ELURU: Speakers at a meeting organised by the CPI in Bhimavaram on Sunday, expressed concern over exploration of shale gas in Krishna-Godavari basin as it would pose a grave threat to the ecology in Krishna, East and West Godavari districts.
CPI State assistant secretary JV Satyanarayana Murthy said the party would strongly oppose exploration of shale gas as it would destroy the fragile ecosystem in the region. He called upon people of the three districts to wage a united fight against exploration of shale gas to better safeguard their interests.
Geologist G Krishna Rao said: “ONGC is exploring natural gas in the delta area now. As a result, the extent of land under agriculture is on the decline. If shale gas is explored, water sources will get contaminated. It will also have an adverse effect on flora and fauna. The gases released by shale gas exploration will destroy the ozone layer. There is no proven technology to treat the effluents released by shale gas and it will put the human health in peril.“
Environmentalist Babu Rao Kalapala said: “The shale gas exploration will pose a grave threat by 2022 as it may lead to earthquakes and other natural disasters. The report submitted by ONGC on shale gas exploration is not comprehensive. The shale gas reserves in the coastal districts will dry up within seven to eight years. Later, the delta will become a cemetery as the air, water and land will get contaminated.”
Progressive Forum national secretary Marla Vijaya Kumar said: “About 3 crore gallons of water is needed for each well for exploration of shale gas. Drinking water in coastal districts will become scarce, if shale gas exploration is taken up in a big way in the Krishna Godavari basin. The shale gas exploration may cause severe air pollution, besides contaminating the groundwater sources.”
The speakers demanded that the move to explore shale gas in Krishna Godavari basin be given up in the larger interests of people and to protect the fragile ecology. CPI leaders from Krishna, East and West Godavari districts and activists of other people’s organisations attended the meeting.