Leading Democratic presidential nominees want to ban fracking “everywhere.” However, the ban may do more harm than good and adversely affect U.S. and global energy security. A U.S. fracking ban will incentivize emerging economies and high carbon emitters like China, India, and other Asian countries to turn even more to coal and heating oil to meet their power generation, heating, and cooking needs. Also, the ban will increase the costs of wind and solar projects since their components come from natural gas liquids and liquid petroleum gas derived from oil and natural gas.
The biggest beneficiaries would be OPEC and Russia who would be free to raise oil and natural gas prices as the U.S. companies leave the market. The biggest losers will be U.S. and global electricity and heating consumers who will pay higher costs without seeing any progress made in fighting climate change. I offer some actionable policy recommendations in lieu of a fracking ban that will accomplish the same goals without endangering U.S. and global energy security. Read the article