Future Fracking Practices Will Require Far More Water Than Previously Estimated

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DURHAM, United States

A dramatic increase in fracking's water footprint in the United States from 2011 to 2016 indicates that future hydraulic fracturing practices will require far more water than previously estimated. A new report from Duke University has found that the water use per fracking well increased up to 770 Percent over the period and, importantly, that the toxic wastewater produced in the first year of a well's production jumped to 1440 Percent.

If this rapid intensification continues, fracking’s water footprint could grow by up to 50-fold in some regions by the year 2030 -- raising concerns about its sustainability, particularly in arid or semi-arid regions in western states, or other areas where groundwater supplies are stressed or limited.