Water use per fracking stage is minor

Water, water, everywhere and still a lot to drink


It has apparently emerged that Cuadrilla plans to drill and then subsequently test frack at least one of its planned horizontal wells in 45 stages using 765 m3 of fracking fluid in each stage.

This figure has been seized upon by opponents to try and suggest that it is an excessive use of water. 

But is it?

On average, we use 150 litres (0.15 m3) of water a day in the UK, per person. 

This means that Lancashire's 1.4 million residents can be expected to consume 210,000 m3 of water between them every day of the week.

At 765 m3, a single frack stage will therefore use the equivalent of just 0.36% of Lancashire's estimated daily domestic water use. and that's before you add all the commercial, industrial and agricultural uses of water.

Like everything else, when put into proper context, it's clear that fracking's water demand is actually very minor.

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