When It Comes to the Environmental Impact of Hydrofracking vs. Conventional Gas/Oil Drilling, Research Shows the Differences May Be Minimal

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Original news: Syracuse University News

Excerpt: Crude oil production and natural gas withdrawals in the United States have lessened the country’s dependence on foreign oil and provided financial relief to U.S. consumers, but have also raised longstanding concerns about environmental damage, such as groundwater contamination. A researcher in the College of Arts and Sciences and a team of scientists from Penn State have developed a new machine learning technique to holistically assess water quality data in order to detect groundwater samples likely impacted by recent methane leakage during oil and gas production. Using that model, the team concluded that unconventional drilling methods like hydraulic fracturing—or hydrofracking—do not necessarily incur more environmental problems than conventional oil and gas drilling.