What is Hilary Clinton’s stance on fracking? Clinton has said that if elected President of the United States, that she would consider closing the Haliburton Loophole. A few weeks ago, she hired pro-fracking stalwart Ken Salazar to come on board her ‘transition team’ for when she becomes President. Politics can often be a game of conflicting statements.
Below, we present some findings on Hilary Clinton’s track record in relation to Unconventional Shale Gas Extraction.
- As Secretary of State, Clinton supported Unconventional Shale Gas Extraction in her Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA) Ministerial comments where she stated that: “Now, I know that in some places is controversial. But natural gas is the cleanest fossil fuel available for power generation today, and a number of countries in the Americas may have shale gas resources. If developed, shale gas could make an important contribution to our region’s energy supply, just as it does now for the United States. And the geologists at the U.S. Geological Survey are ready to work with partners to explore this potential.”
- Clinton supported the practice as secretary of state. Her special envoy for international energy affairs launched the Global Shale Gas Initiative which encouraged other countries such as China, India, Poland, Jordan, Chile, and South Africa to explore shale as an energy source.
- On August 18th 2012, Clinton addressed George Town University and stated: “Countries that used to depend on others for their energy are now producers. How will this shape world events? Who will benefit, and who will not?…The answers to these questions are being written right now, and we intend to play a major role.”
- Clinton supported fracking at the National Clean Energy Summit in 2014, where she stated: “we have to face head-on the legitimate, pressing environmental concerns about some new extraction practices and their impacts on local water, soil, and air supplies. Methane leaks in the production and transportation of natural gas are particularly troubling. So it’s crucial that we put in place smart regulations and enforce them, including deciding not to drill when the risks are too high.”
Recently however, in the run up to the 2016 U.S. Presidential Race, Hilary Clinton changed her tune somewhat in relation to Unconventional Shale Gas Extraction.
During live debate with Bernie Sanders, candidates were asked if they supported fracking. And Bernie Sanders had a simple answer: “No, I do not support fracking.”
In response, Hillary Clinton outlined three conditions that would set her against fracking:
- “when any locality or any state is against it.”
- “when the release of methane or contamination of water is present.”
- And “unless we can require that anybody who fracks has to tell us exactly what chemicals they are using.”
Clinton stated that until those conditions are met, “we’ve got to regulate everything that is currently underway, and we have to have a system in place that prevents further fracking.” She added: “By the time we get through all of my conditions, I do not think there will be many places in America where fracking will continue to take place.”
Judging whether or not Hilary Clinton is pro or anti fracking will depend on how you balance words against track record.
What are your thoughts? Please leave your comments below.