“What do you mean, you’re fracking here! In the valley? Why?” I asked.

I was horrified. Ever since “fracking” became the latest, greatest trend in assaulting the earth, I have been sure it was going to do serious harm. How can anyone believe drilling through earth’s bedrock is okay? Could be safe or sane?

What about hidden, previously dormant fault lines? Or not so dormant fault lines. The aquifer and who knows what else? And about those nukes?


The utility companies are telling the government they can’t supply enough power if they aren’t allowed to drill and drill deep into the earth. Drill down to and through the supporting stone, the spine of the planet. And … oh, by the way, they also said: “We’ll pass the costs on to consumers.”

Naturally. You are going to destroy my world and make me pay for it.

The valley already has the highest number per capita of nuclear generating plants of any region in the country. You don’t see the nukes because they hide behind trees and fences. Big fences with barbed wire on top. Not the kind of fencing you expect to see in a park. So when you do see it, you know. There’s a nuke back there. One of many. When the mills moved south, the nukes moved in. Can’t leave that river idle, can you?


Now, they’re going to do a little “harmless fracking.” Right next door to all those nuclear plants. What could possibly go wrong?

This would be the first time, but it wouldn’t be the last. Well, on second thought, maybe it will be the last. Some mistakes are final. Irrevocable.

From some disasters, there’s no coming back. 


Categories: Blackstone River, Blackstone Valley, Photography

Tags: , , , , , , ,

37 replies

  1. I am devastated by Shell trying to come into the Karoo (South Africa); and am fighting so hard to have our voices heard – but they seem so muted over the “drilling”. The Karoo is one of the most pristine lands in the world – no exaggeration. Being a semi-desert means that the farmers, locals and animals depend almost entirely upon ground water, which fracking could easily contaminate.


    • Especially since there is more and more proof of the damage fracking does. I really DO share you pain. If they drill here, I’m pretty sure it will be mass destruction of everything … the water, the earth, everything. It makes me feel angry and helpless. And no one is listening.


  2. Nasty world, self-serving politicians! I focused on the bright side in this post which is your fantastic second capture.


  3. When I first came back to New Zealand there was a power shortage (we run on water generated energy) and the lakes were very low. There was a discussion about nuclear energy – that faded away when it started to rain again and the power crises was over. South of where I live there is a wind farm to help out with the energy as well. Then the dreaded term fracking came up – that has faded into the background – maybe because we are an earthquake prone country and it might not really be a good idea to do any fracking near a fault line.


  4. Fracking was used many years ago and they found it bad for the environment then. Nothing’s changed. It will destroy your watershed. Fight it with all your might.


  5. Harmless fracking? Whoever coined that term? Scary thoughts, Marilyn.


  6. I would think that a concerted campaign could resist fracking. There have been many successful struggles. And the evidence about earthquakes in Oklahoma and elsewhere seems to be becoming more widely accepted. But your reporting about governance in and around Uxbridge isn’t encouraging. Can’t count on your local government to lead the way. I guess.

    Maybe an argument can and should be made about potential geological instability and the collection of local nuclear plants? As you say, “What could possibly go wrong?”


    • The local governments aren’t even putting this up for public referendum. They are dealing with it as a private business matter between state government regulators and power utility providers. NO notification, no place for citizens to say much of anything. They’ll decide, we’ll get the bills, and then, the world will blow up.


  7. Unfortunately it is happening everywhere, sucking Earth dry.


  8. The earth explodes when it is over exploited. God feed some sanity into humans!


  9. I can immediately point to two Dr Who adventures (one “new”, one “classic”) which explain why drilling into the Earth is not a good idea. Plus numerous dodgy B movies, of course!


    • Dr. Who was, is, and will be the Prophet of the end times. As for those B movies, those people running through the streets screaming were probably right. It was the calm, sensible people who didn’t get it.


  10. Oh Marilyn that is dreadful. More and more fracking seems to be going on everywhere despite the danger and destruction. My first thought was for your well knowing how many water issues you have had. I did not realise you had such a lot of nuclear power plants nearby. How stupid are these people?


  11. Terrifying news! Are there action groups and protesters out there? Just this past Saturday, my husband and I went out to the city of Boston (West Roxbury) to protest a new pipeline that will go right through the neighborhood. It’s dangerous and terrifying to think of everything that could possibly go wrong with that.
    We need more Climate Activists.


    • I doubt most people are even aware of it. They are sneaking this in via the power regulatory people … without any kind of notification to residents. And it isn’t “official” and no one seems to be “in charge” … so I’m not sure what to do. This is such a densely settled part of the country. Such a BAD BAD BAD idea.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Perhaps, you could start a vigil.
        Spread the word via social media. People will show up. There are those who know how to organize these things (I don’t). Try sending a message to the people who are behind the “top the Pipeline in West Roxbury” movement.
        Let me think of what else can be done. I’ll get back to you (if you would like to hear from me).


        • I would like to hear from you. I’m not sure whether I’m physically up to organizing, but I am worried that they are going to sneak this past everyone. It would be catastrophic. It would destroy the watershed if it doesn’t blow up the whole region. I have trouble believing they could be that stupid … but apparently stupidity is the next big thing.


  12. CA is finally closing its last nuclear power plant, Diablo Canyon — not so much because of fracking as because of earthquake faults. We are apparently looking towards solar, which takes immense amounts of land, and wind, which is ugly and also takes a lot of land. We are actually having to pay for dismantling the San Onofre nuclear plant, too!


    • Nationally, we have NO PLACE to dispose of nuclear waste. No place at all. I learned a lot about this as part of a project I worked on and was horrified to discover that most nuclear waste lives on trucks that never go anywhere but to another truck because there IS no place to put the stuff. No one wants it in their back yard and who can blame them?

      Garry got two of his three Emmys for a very long protest against a nuclear plant in New Hampshire and that was one of the issues. It remains unsolved. If they ever have to dismantle all of OUR nukes, well … I can’t imagine how they could do it.


      • And the plant operators are rather blasé about the whole situation. I live about 15 miles from San Onofre and cannot hear alarm sirens — they say the safe zone is to miles around the plant. In case of emergency, I ‘d never know!


        • In case of emergency, we’d be dead before we heard the siren. There are nukes virtually in our backyard. We don’t see them, but they are all over the valley. I’m surprise we don’t all glow in the dark.


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