A decade into North America's fracking boom, the impact on wildlife and the environment remains largely unknown, according to a new study.
"We're conducting a giant experiment without even collecting the important data on the water, air, land or wildlife impacts," said Sara Souther, an ecologist at the University of Wisconsin, one of the co-authors of the peer-reviewed research examining the environmental impacts of shale gas development in the U.S. and Canada.
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On his Facebook page, Van Jones lists among his interests "Slaying dragons. Rescuing imperiled planets. Playing basketball with my four-year-old son."
Jones is better known as a champion of green jobs, human rights and innovative economic solutions designed to lift up the next generation of workers.
Few people deny that humans are releasing immense amounts of so-called "greenhouse gases" -- notably, carbon dioxide -- by burning fossil fuels. Nor is there dispute about the physical process by which these gases trap some of the infrared radiation (also known as "heat") reflected into the atmosphere from the Earth's surface, preventing this radiation from escaping into space.
The simple version of the climate change story is that increasing amounts of greenhouse gases mean that more outgoing infrared radiation is trapped, and more can be re-radiated back to the Earth's surface, increasing its average temperature.