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The oil and gas industry have been drilling for oil using fresh water, carbonated, fresh water---to pressurize their wells, since the mid 1800’s; they also use phosphoric acid, the ingredient needed for RNA and DNA formation. They only use fresh water. Salt water will not do; if you see it mentioned it is the rare case of desalinization. As a consequence, they have used up as much fresh water from our planet as they have produced oil since the beginning, which is now a little over 150 years ago. Unlike other industrial uses of H2O, the depth they put the water means it is never coming back to the water table, and it is polluted, because the acid brew has been dissolving the crust of the earth slowly---but surely, chewing up metals dissolving them into their sulfides and forming methane gas, a simple chemical reaction when you have CO2 and a lot of fully decayed carbon. We are a closed system. We are not making any new water at this point in our planet's history.
Our shortage of water on Earth today, and it is getting critical, is primarily due to the oil and gas drilling, not only because it removes water, but because when you remove water from rivers, lakes and streams, and their depths get lower and narrower, it evaporates faster, and soon you have drought. Removing water directly from the water table has even worse results. Rain for the most part stays in place; what goes up comes back down. The only new fresh water comes from rain storms in coastal areas where water evaporates from the ocean and comes back down on the land. Now you know what caused the dust bowl in the 30's; it was the first round of oil exploration in Texas, Oklahoma, California etc. all the water they used from the immediate area to pressurize their wells.
Methane gas likes water; with fresh water, and fresh water only, it can form its hydrate in salt water. It does this by compressing itself about 170 times into an ice lattice. Methane in all but one case on Earth needs low temperature and high pressure to form as it does deep in the earth where the industry finds oil and gas.
The one exception to the rule is the
Now you would think that it would have made the cover of Time magazine, something new- never seen on earth before, and you would think that the oil and gas industry might have figured out, or at least had a passing thought that what they were doing in the Arctic, This new discovery went unheralded and the consequence of this forced silence is that the oil industry began the long term draining of all of the summer permafrost lakes, ponds and puddles and the Mackenzie river for pressurization of their wells. They also created billions of tons of methane hydrates just under the surface of the permafrost.
Methane gas likes its hydrate better than anything else and when it gets threatened by something say the Arctic summer heat, and thinks it is going to have to return to its gaseous form (destabilize), it counters this with a cleaver little attribute; It takes up heat into its methane molecule, it can hold up to 400 degree F- in every molecule of methane without melting the ice that encircles it. At full saturation it cannot hold on to water any longer, and it destabilizes, first fizzling and then exploding, and it releases the gas and the heat. That is why for the first time, in 1941, after two years of geared up production for the war you had a 101 degree F day in the Sub