Should Fracking Be Met With Fright or Admiration?

From Freakonomics:
It took less than an hour for Apple to sell out the initial supply of its new iPhone 5. It’sthinner, lighter, faster, brighter, tallerthan its predecessors, and yet it costs the same. That’s called progress.
Elsewhere, progress is met by protest rather than praise.
suite of technologies has brought vast supplies of previously unrecoverable shale gas within reach of humans, dramatically expanding natural gas reserves in the U.S. and around the world. Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have produced a fuel that can at once promote a cooler planet and an expanded economy, essentially eliminating the tradeoff between climate change mitigation and the pursuit of other public projects and, perhaps, economic growth. But unlike the iPhone, the productivity gain embodied in shale gas technologies doesn’t attract a cult following and its benefits get obscured. 
Among some of the most ardent advocates of climate policy, the growth of shale gas extraction is lamented because, in addition to being 30-50% cleaner than coal (even accounting for escaped methane), it is also (gasp) cheaper than coal. And cheaper than wind. And cheaper than solar.
Read the rest of the article here.

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