Monday, March 12, 2012

Utahns’ views on oil shale plan reflect alternate realities

Utahns speaking out for and against oil shale development on federal lands at public meetings this week will describe starkly different future realities. Western Resource Advocates oil shale adviser David Abelson released a new report critical of the "speculative" industry that he warned could soak up scarce water and scar lands better used to support recreation jobs.

Some companies, which say they’re ready to mine and heat the rock to generate oil, say their processes use little water. But the Western Resource Advocates’ report, "Oil Shale 2050," taps BLM estimates to calculate that full-field development would need more water than used by the 1.3 million customers currently relying on Denver’s water system. Salt Lake Tribune