There is a strong need for innovation and the development of viable renewable energy sources. Recent technological advances now allow natural gas supplies-previously believed inaccessible or nonexistent-to be discovered, mined, and processed for both industrial and consumer use. The technology, a controversial process that is alternatively called hydraulic fracturing, fracking, fracing, or hydrofracking, has greatly expanded natural gas production in the United States. Presenting a balanced discussion, Environmental Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing is a comprehensive guide to all aspects of hydraulic fracturing used to extract natural gas, along with gas exploration and production in various shale fields.As the use of hydraulic fracturing has grown, concerns about its environmental and public health impacts have also increased-one of the most significant concerns being the fluids that are injected into rock formations to cause the fracturing contain potentially hazardous chemical additives. The book covers all facets of the issue, including ongoing controversies about the environmental and operator safety issues arising from possible water pollution, drinking water contamination, on-the-job safety hazards, and harmful chemical exposure to workers and residents near well areas.The author discusses both the pros and cons of hydraulic fracturing, explaining the process in great detail. He describes the benefits of hydraulic fracturing and its importance in making the United States energy independent by drilling for its own resources, as well as the potential impacts to the surrounding environment. The text also includes suggestions and recommendations on how to mitigate environmental damage. Arguably the first book of its kind, this is the go-to text on the use and impacts of hydraulic fracturing.