Fracking was invented way back around World War II, as a means of getting oil to come out of the ground more easily. Back then they used napalm. The process was invented by Halliburton, the company Dick Cheney headed before becoming vice-president.
Halliburton didn't want you to know what chemicals are used in fracking-- besides the millions of gallons of water. Could be benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene, diesel fuel, sand. But there was this contentious little law-- something about drinking water-- that made it illegal for them to inject these deadly chemicals into the ground near anybody's sources of drinking water. No problem. With former oil executive Bush in charge, Dick Cheney was appointed to meet with oil industry executives-- in secrecy-- to draft some new laws, one of which gave the oil industry an exemption to the Safe Drinking Water Act. This is how it works.
Did you know that in Alberta and British Columbia, you only own the top layer of the ground beneath your house? What's below that-- including any natural gas or oil-- belongs to the government. Now, you might think your government would at least make sure that any money to be made from the deposits under your home would benefit you directly. And you might also believe in the tooth fairy. In fact, you are not entitled to one red cent for any oil or gas beneath your house. And the government's share of the profits from this mineral wealth guarantee that the government is going to support these industries if you try to fight them.
And do you think the cost of the water used, and the damage to the environment, is an expense to the oil industry? Are you mad?
In the U.S., you might own the mineral rights. You might not. It depends on state law and previous agreements with previous owners. You might very well purchase a property only to discover that you own nothing beneath the surface In principle, though, mineral rights to anything below the surface are owned by the property owner. How can you own part of an oil deposit if it encompasses several properties? Under the "rule of capture", whoever pumps out the oil first gets it. You snooze, you lose.
Some oil companies have, in fact, been caught digging their wells on an angle in order to pump out the oil below somebody else's property.
So once again, it's socialism for the investors-- they get to share the property below your house-- and free enterprise for the working classes-- you have to go out and work for a living. And then you have to pay them for the oil. And then you might find out that your drinking water has been contaminated by the toxins they inject into the ground to free up that oil and gas. And then you find out that you won't be compensated because Dick Cheney and George Bush saw to it that the oil industry will not be liable for any damage done to your drinking water.