Fracking, already controversial for its potential environmental impact, could spell disaster for poor and corrupt municipalities, bringing further harm to areas already poorly governed.
This is one of the possibilities sketched out in an as-yet-unreleased assessment of the possible impact of hydraulic fracturing to recover shale gas in South Africa.
This week, an assessment team of scientists and experts released the first chapter of a highly anticipated report on fracking, and its likely impact, to help guide government policy.
While exploiting the natural gas could provide a much-needed new energy source for electricity-hungry South Africa, the team says it could also inadvertently entrench historical inequality, and disrupt the social fabric of the region where the gas can be exploited.
For more, you can find the story — first published in the Cape Times — here.
Also, this chapter of the report is available for the public. Here is a my breakdown of the four different fracking scenarios.