Inside Extreme Scale Tech|Friday, October 31, 2014
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Fracking: The Harbinger of a US Economic Golden Age 

During this past election, the topic that continually arose was the economy. Now, faced with falling off the Fiscal Cliff, matters seem even bleaker. But according to Harvard history professor, Niall Ferguson, we may be on the verge of a new economic “golden age” – and energy will get us there.

Ferguson believes that natural gas and oil production will be the source of the tailwind. Specifically, he is referring to “fracking,” a process by which oil and gas are extracted from shale formations split open through liquid injections. (This definition, of course, replaces the Battlestar Galactica expletive of the same name.)

According to the International Energy Agency, this isn’t just the tentative beginning of an emerging era for US energy production. In a recent forecast, the agency predicted the US would topple Saudi Arabia from on the oil-production throne within the decade. Not only would this boom help us move toward energy independence, it would bring jobs Americans have been asking for since the 2008 economic downturn.

But Ferguson says this isn’t the only good tidings that fracking will bring. As the US moves past Saudi Arabia on the oil totem pole, “the dollar can only benefit.”

Also, despite his alignment with the Republican party, Ferguson states that this economic upswing will be a boon to Obama, who would, according to Ferguson, be credited with the oversight of the changing tide. Energy independence through fracking would also mean cleaner energy as we lessen dependence on coal, in line with Obama’s goals.

But Obama’s possible victory is still contingent upon the accuracy of Ferguson’s forecast. Even if Ferguson, a Romney supporter in this past election, is less than thrilled at the potential victory for the Democratic Party, he, and millions of other Americans, may have less to complain about if his predictions hold true.

Full story at CNN

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