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02 August 2011

Scientist concerned by water demand for fracking

A scientist who has just returned from the United States where he observed fracking operations said he is concerned about the huge amounts of water needed for such operations.

Government is yet to take a decision on Shell’s application to undertake hydraulic fracturing for shale gas in the Karoo.

Dr Danie Vermeulen from the University of the Free State's Institute for Groundwater Studies said he observed more environmentally sound ways of fracking for gas.

But he said the Karoo simply does not have the water needed for operations.

He said a pipeline could be built from the sea to be used for fracking.