A new University of Texas-Austin study shows that producing electricity from natural gas saves much more water than producing power from coal, even accounting for water lost in fracking for shale gas.
In other words, fracking for natural gas used to produce electricity may make Texas more drought-resistant as the state shifts from coal power generation to natural gas power generation.
The study, funded by the state of Texas, looks at how Texas’devastating 2011 drought affected electricity demand and power plant water consumption as compared to 2010. Texas is unique among states because its power grid is entirely isolated from the rest of the country. It also produces more electricity than any other state, about half of which is produced using natural gas, according to the study.
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