Texas is Fracked

Beverly McGuire has lived in Barnhart, TX for more than thirty years. Like many Texans, she probably didn’t give fracking much thought before her town ran out of water. “The day that we ran out of water I turned on my faucet and nothing was there and at that moment I knew the whole of Barnhart was down the tubes,” she said in a Guardian interview last month, blinking back tears. “I went, ‘Dear God, help us.’ That was the first thought that came to mind.”

Despite those prayers, however, Texas has suffered years of sustained drought. On top of that, the oil and gas industry’s demand for water used in fracking are running down reservoirs and aquifers, and contaminating whatever’s left. Rapidly-increasing climate change is working against Texas’ cattle industry, as well, making things even worse for the people of West Texas towns like Barnhart, and any other towns in Briscoe, Burnet, or Comal counties.

As we reported last month, about 30 communities across West Texas could be out of water before the end of this year, according to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality‘s September 4th update to their drought report. As a nod to the commenters who doubted the veracity of that article because the facts came from “some chick expert” and I didn’t “name the towns”, here are a few of the towns listed as running out of water in “180 days”, “90 days”, and “45 days”. It’s not a complete list, nor does it tell the whole story, but the message is clear: fracking is killing Texas.

Here’s the list …

Tesxa Towns Running Out of Water

… and the key to the chart breaks down something like this …

  • E – Emergency – Could be out of water in 45 days or less.
  • P – Priority – Could be out of water in 90 days or less.
  • C – Concern – Could be out of water in 180 days or less.
  • W – Watch – Has greater than a 180 day supply of water remaining.


… here’s hoping the people of Texas wake up quickly enough to save part of their state, at least. If I know anything about Texans, though, the people of these towns are too busy burning science books and clutching their shotguns while praying for rain and blaming the black guy. Possibly also the Mexicans. Texas kind of has it coming, is my point. Glenda Kuykendall, I think, may be the best example of Texan cluelessness so far, saying “We are in the United States, in American, where this should not happen.”

Sorry, Glenda. You seem to misunderstand the notion of “consequences”. We reap what we sow.

You can watch the Guardian’s interview of Glenda and Beverly and the rest of the Beverly Hillbillies West Texas gang start to turn on each other and start blaming the problem on the farmers that have private wells in the video, below. Enjoy!


Sources: the Guardian, NPR.