Let’s be gas free – letter to the Editor

Dear Editor,

One of the things I’ve noticed over the years is the propensity to base campaigns, usually negative, on poor information or misinformation. The anti-nuclear proponents cite the utter devastation and high death toll of Chernobyl and Fukushima  as examples of the perils of nuclear energy, an emission free, pollution free and reliable power source. The World Health Organisation, hardly a right wing outfit, verified that 60 people died at Chernobyl, most of whom were workers in the plant when it started melting down. No one died at Fukushima and no one suffered from radiation poisoning when Helen Caldicott, a long term anti-nuclear alarmist, warned of deaths in the tens of thousands. That leads me to the anti-gas campaigns being run locally.

I was fortunate enough to spend some weeks in Southern Alberta, Canada recently, an area rich in agriculture and oil and gas wells. There were canola and wheat fields as far as the eye can see and right in the crops adjacent to the roads were oil pump jacks pushing oil into storage tanks or pipelines. Farmers ploughed around the wells and cattle grazed up to them. Likewise the numerous gas wells. I had the chance to speak with the drillers and have them explain how a well is constructed. The first  400 metres is a 375 mm hole into which is inserted a 300 mm pipe. A cement slurry is pumped into the gap to seal the well from water acquifers. The gas pipe is then dropped down the sealing pipe and extends up to 6000 metres where it could then go horizontally for up to eight kilometres. Farmers do not seem concerned and profit from hosting wells and production. There are no dams full of chemically charged water and little topside evidence of construction. Now whether the local gas wells would follow that design is something for the proponents to disclose but it was apparent that it can be done with minimum disruption.

An added bonus were the absolutely beautiful roads and highways. Not a pothole to be seen and every winter there is some damage from the ground freezing that is repaired to perfection. You might also be interested in the household power prices; 8.5 cents per kWh. All courtesy of gas and oil.

Yours faithfully

Lawrie Ayres


Editors  note: These opinions are those of the contributor and not of the Manning Community News. We welcome letters from our community provided they are not defamatory or litigious.

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