Required reading: shale gas document dump

Nova Scotians could be forgiven for feeling confused about prospects for shale gas fracking in the province. Is shale gas a sensible short-term approach to reduced carbon emissions? Or an environmental calamity waiting to happen?

Those who stand to profit from shale gas, and governments desperate for energy solutions that won’t cripple the economy, are predictably bullish on our shale gas reserves. Many environmentalists oppose fracking with the unreassuring obduracy they bring to every issue (see: the nonsensical flap over biosolids).

I have no idea who’s right about shale gas, but today’s New York Times offers a massive dump of insider documents purporting to show promoters have wildly exaggerated shale gas reserves, while regulators and venture capital companies have averted their eyes. The candid assessments range from “bubble” to “Ponzi scheme.”

[Note: The Times document reader is hard to use, but easier if you click the text tab at the top of the page. See also here and here.]