The extraction of oil shale is a tedious and difficult process. To get the oil from oil shale, it must first go through a process called retorting. In this process, the oil shale is heated up so the hydrocarbons can liquefy and give the oil. There are two ways in which oil shale can be processed; it goes through either surface retorting or in-situ retorting. Surface retorting requires extensive mining, which will affect the local population and environment. In contrast, in-situ resorting, removes mining from the process. Instead, it heats up the oil shale underground and the outcomes are collected above ground.
The Green River Formation has one of the highest amounts of oil shale in the United States. It covers parts of Wyoming, Utah, and Colorado. The towns nearby are Vernal, Utah, Rock Springs, Wyoming, and Rifle, Colorado. Most of these cities have a population less than thirty thousand people. Although these towns have small populations, they will be affected ...
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...n the United States, whether it is foreign or domestic. Oil shale has may negative effects and few positive effects. Renewable energy sources are the best alternative to fossil fuels, but there is not enough emphasis on alternative forms of energy. Oil shale will only contribute to the problem rather than solve it. It is an expensive process that can cause irreversible damage to the environment and to the people. The Green River Formation has the potential to create an economic boom, but at the cost of irreversible damage. The future of the United States is dependent not on shale oil, but renewable energy sources. The small percentage of renewable energy sources used in the United States emphasizes the nation’s dependency on oil. Reformation of the current system is necessary in order for change to happen; the United States needs to rely solely on renewable energy.
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