Shale gas deposits
There was an article this morning about the shale gas deposits where I currently live. It is talking about the deposits in BC, but they also extend into the North West Territories where I currently live.
Jayhawk Resources is putting in a frack sand mine very close to where I live. They are supposed to be starting work on 16 km of road to the site this summer and there is a 2 year construction plan. I forget the name of the actual sand crystals they are looking for, but they are very strong and aren't crushed in the process. The frack sand gets between the fractured shale and just holds those fractures open enough to allow the gas to escape. They can't use any sand, but need sand with the crystals and I believe there is also a separation process to mine those crystals from the rock.
One of the things I have to say about teaching where I do is the integration of the school into real life is substantial. We've had numerous businesses come to our school and do presentations on what they are doing in and around our community, and Jayhawk is one of the companies. And the companies are also extremely open to me taking students to them for field trips, so my students have been through SpectraEnergy's plant just south of Ft Nelson, and they have been to gas wells and base camps. I certainly never saw anything like this in the city. Although I think students like wearing the hard hats and protective equipment more then learning about the businesses and what kinds of job opportunities they present...