If you’ve been around the shale gas drilling debate for long, you know that most of the opposition to drilling focuses on a little-understood, decades-old technology called hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking” for short. If you’re a science fiction fan, you may also recognize the word fracking from the Battlestar Galactica television series. The word is used as a curse word substitute for another “f” word to avoid being censored.
Fracking’s closeness in spelling, and sound, to the other “f” word has not gone unnoticed by those who oppose drilling. They’ve used the word fracking in all sorts of double entendres with signs like like “Don’t Frack Me” and hundreds of other variations. Just attend a protest meeting and you’ll see what we mean.
In a very serious debate, sometimes a little levity is a good thing. Poke fun at yourself, and at the same time, tweak the other side. Chesapeake CEO Aubrey McClendon recently did just that with this statement about Chesapeake’s use of fracking technology:
"I’m the biggest fracker in the world. I’ve done it 16,000 times since 1989 and I’m proud of it," he said.*
*The Intelligencer/Wheeling News-Register (Oct 2, 2011) – Ethane Cracker May Come to Ohio