The Boom Book Summary By Russell Gold

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The Boom is a book that examines the exciting advances and potential pitfalls of fracking technology.

By this, we mean the controversial drilling of shale gas and oil.

Through in-depth research and investigative journalism, author Russell Gold paints an honest portrait of the industry's impact on economic, environmental and social issues worldwide.

From its origins to its place in leading energy strategies today, The Boom looks at the risks associated with fracking and provides the reader with valuable insights into what it would take for us all to move forward responsibly.

It's essential reading for anyone interested in understanding this debatable extraction process and its consequences.

The Boom Book

Book Name: The Boom (How Fracking Ignited the American Energy Revolution and Changed the World)

Author(s): Russell Gold

Rating: 4/5

Reading Time: 15 Minutes

Categories: Economics

Author Bio

Russell Gold is an acclaimed writer and energy policy expert who turned his expertise into a best-selling book called The Boom.

Gold gained recognition for his work by earning a Pulitzer Prize nomination due to his coverage of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

He currently serves as a journalist writing for the Wall Street Journal where he has been focusing on issues related to energy policy, making him a go-to source when it comes to information on this topic.

Exploring The Controversial Pros And Cons Of Fracking: A Speedy History Of A Divisive Energy Source


Fracking has become one of the most important energy sources in the US within the last 30 years.

Despite this development, however, there is still a lot of confusion and debate surrounding it.

It’s important to learn about fracking – its history, the reasons for its popularity, and its potential consequences.

In sections of The Boom Book, you can learn why people are so divided over fracking; why supporters call it a different “F” word; how it got started with just one company; why people used to search for oil by digging holes in the ground; why fracking progresses too quickly without knowing the risks; and how some believe that it could lead us to a cleaner and greener environment.

With these facts under your belt, you can make an informed decision about what role fracking should play in our future energy needs.

The Frustrating Quest To Harness Domestic Shale Gas Through Fracking

It was no secret that natural gas was trapped in rocks, but it wasn’t until recently that we learned how to get it out.

Initially, the process of extracting oil from oil wells meant that access to natural gas was not needed.

However, as the flow of oil from these wells started to slow down, other energy sources had to be explored.

Enter fracking – a process for releasing gas and petroleum from rocks.

After attempts during the American Civil War using a device called the “petroleum torpedo” proved too costly and dangerous for widespread use, hydrofrac treatment was used as a more efficient approach.

This method involved pressing water and sand into rock in order to create an opening for gas extraction, although most of the resource still remained trapped inside.

There then followed further experiments thereafter including the US Atomic Energy Commission’s attempt at atom bombs for fracking which were met with protest due to radiation concerns.

The Unconventional Gas Research Program did receive some funding throughout this time but overall domestic efforts failed due to heavy reliance on foreign oil and gas resources instead.

It is only in recent years that effective forms of fracking have been developed – so while we’ve known about shale gas reserves being underground all this time, only recently has technology enabled us to extract it successfully.

Fracking: A Small Company’S Bold Technology That Changed The Oil Drilling Industry

It’s remarkable how far modern fracking technology has come, compared to the imprecise and random drilling that was used before.

In the past, wildcatters would attempt to predict the location of oil reserves through reports or by trial and error — success was far from guaranteed.

The development of prediction technology eventually improved drastically, but new drilling techniques had still yet to be developed, since they were quite risky and expensive.

With traditional methods in place, there was also little investment in technological development.

Luckily, modern fracking solves this dilemma by pushing pressurized water mixed with sand and chemicals down a well.

This means that shale stone could now be extracted with greater efficiency.

Fracking is mainly made possible by small companies that have limited sites where they can drill and need a way to extract as much gas as possible when they find it — which has proved successful since 1998.

Overall, it’s amazing how much progress has been made in the field of fracking over time, from relying on random drilling beforehand to having a viable alternative available today thanks to fresh technology.

The Risks And Rewards Of Fracking: How A Risk-Taking Energy Ceo Helped Revolutionize Domestic Energy Sources

 Domestic Energy Sources

Fracking was developed at an accelerated rate due to personal risks taken, promotion of the technology, and speedy capitalism.

Chesapeake Energy became a major player in the new field of shale gas and fracking by taking chances on acquiring vasts amounts of land, drilling more and more wells even though it posed a great deal of risk to both the company and its CEO, Aubrey McClendon.

Wall Street investors provided them with the loans necessary for funding their operations which led to McClendon becoming one of the wealthiest energy CEOs ever.

At the same time, engineers shared knowledge about fracking across different companies to increase efficiency, leading to improvements in techniques like horizontal drilling which is still used today.

With their main goal being to help secure domestic energy sources for the US they worked swiftly and were motivated by profits as well.

Overall, these elements greatly contributed to upgrading fracking technology within a short amount of time.

The U.S. Oil And Gas Drilling Business: A Unique System Of Private Land Ownership And Landmen Negotiations

Land ownership is integral to the fracking industry as a whole.

In many countries, surface and mineral rights are not separated; thus ownership of land generally implies ownership of all resources beneath it.

In the US, however, the situation is much different – surface and mineral rights can be split up and sold separately.

This makes it easier for companies to acquire land for oil and gas drilling with relative ease.

What’s more, the US has a highly pro-drilling legal framework when it comes to obtaining resources from private property.

Companies such as Chesapeake Energy have sent out workers called landmen to research and attain land from numerous individuals rather than negotiating directly with governments like large oil companies do in many other countries.

This method was pioneered by McClendon, who helped further develop shale gas drilling on a massive scale by using a constant flow of cash through foreign investors who believed in his business model.

It’s clear that land ownership plays an essential role in the fracking industry, particularly in the United States where large companies have perfected their methods of acquiring private property for resource extraction purposes.

The Economic Recession Led To A Surprising Shale Gas Boom In The Us, But How Long Will This Last?

The use of fracking technology in the US has certainly been a blessing, creating many new well-paying jobs, reducing domestic prices for natural gas and allowing for some industry to be brought back from overseas.

It has also lessened the country’s dependence on volatile foreign sources.

However, while these are tremendous opportunities presented by fracking, it is not an ultimate solution to the energy crisis.

The number of wells that can be drilled is limited because shale gas is itself a finite resource.

Not to mention, American oil production peaked in 1970 as predicted by peak-oil theories – and today, it’s still increasing – though its uncertain when it will peak again.

In conclusion, shale gas extraction has provided remarkable benefits for Americans but unfortunately cannot solve all energy problems we face.

Fracking may buy us a little bit more time until we discover another source of energy but in the meantime, even so, we should make sure that our alternatives are well-developed and efficient sources of sustainable energy.

The Truth About Fracking: Both Benefits And Harms For The Environment, With Local Tensions Too


Fracking is one of the most controversial topics out there, and it’s not hard to see why.

On the one hand, fracking has the potential to bridge us from fossil fuel energy sources to renewable energy, while on the other, it can have potentially damaging effects on both the environment and local communities.

To start with, there are some advantages – fossil fuels are currently very dense, which makes them easy to transport around areas that need energy quickly; they are also much more consistent than renewable sources such as solar or wind power since they don’t rely on favorable weather conditions.

Additionally, gas plants can be turned off and on faster than nuclear or coal plants.

On the downside though, fracking still emits greenhouse gases into our atmosphere which contributes further to global warming.

It also often causes tension between fracking companies and local residents whose land is being used for work – farmers who allow fracking want their best fields spared as well as water protection from any contamination and minimal tree cutting.

Local citizens may feel uneasy about noise levels in their rural area or changes to their water source due to actions taken by fracking companies.

Overall, it’s safe to say that there are both pros and cons when it comes to fracking – that fact alone is what makes it such a heated topic of discussion among people across the globe!

The Debate Over Whether Shale Gas Is More Environmentally Friendly Than Coal Remains Unresolved

Environmental activists are divided on how to handle and judge fracking and gas.

Some argue that gas is a much better alternative to coal, believing that it can be used as a bridge towards more renewable forms of energy.

Others argue that while gas may emit fewer carbon dioxide molecules than coal or oil, ultimately it may cause other environmental issues.

The Sierra Club was one of the earliest groups to discuss fracking prospectively in 2006, and had a favorable view of its use.

Later on, however, it became clear that the organization had received some private donations from McClendon which conflicted with its public stance—undermining its credibility on this issue.

Today, most environmental activists are opposed to fracking and view it as an ineffective solution for transitioning away from coal energy usage.

Low natural gas prices reduce the incentive to develop more expensive forms of renewable energies, potentially making them less viable options overall.

Ultimately, opinions have changed over time about the benefits versus drawbacks of shale-gas usage, making further research ongoing and necessary for determining greener solutions pertaining to our sources of energy production.

The Dangers Of Unregulated Fracking: The Need For Robust Research And Stricter Protocols

Unregulated Fracking

The fracking industry has rapidly advanced, with little time being given to creating safer techniques or properly researching its effects.

Many know of the risks, but view them as manageable and simply compensate any individuals affected and move on.

The biggest potential problem is cementing – a process meant to protect water sources from contamination.

However, this process needs to be tightly controlled and can be expensive.

Unfortunately, companies often choose not to invest in research beforehand and instead opt for paying compensation if any issues arise after the fact.

This strategy is cheaper, but it also poses great risk to both people and the environment.

As such, the fracking industry needs to slow down in order for it to find better ways of managing its risks and ensuring proper environmental remediation protocol which will in turn help protect its public image.

Without doing so, they risk further trouble down the line – both legally and financially.

Wrap Up

The final conclusion of The Boom Book is to take an informed opinion on fracking.

Recognize that it could be the key to providing energy in a crisis, but that the industry is still too reckless and needs to slow down and properly consider its plans and potential consequences.

Consider where fracking falls in your wheelhouse, and remember that caution should always be taken when dealing with this complex industry, yet don’t forget that it could also buy us time to develop renewable energy technology.

These are the actionable tips from The Boom book –take them it into consideration when forming your opinion of fracking.

Arturo Miller

Hi, I am Arturo Miller, the Chief Editor of this blog. I'm a passionate reader, learner and blogger. Motivated by the desire to help others reach their fullest potential, I draw from my own experiences and insights to curate blogs.

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