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[mass noun] The process of injecting liquid at high pressure into subterranean rocks, boreholes, etc. so as to force open existing fissures and extract oil or gas:‘fracking has created a shale gas boom in the United States’Also called hydraulic fracturing
- ‘This whole concept of fracking is all new for New York State.’
- ‘But when the infrastructure for pumping natural gas out of the Catskills has finally been put in place, there will be no mistaking its impact, no missing the gaping holes in the forest canopy, the artificial ponds full of "fracking" fluid, the industrial damage done.’
- ‘Residents in states where fracking has been practised for years have charged that gas production has contaminated air and drinking water.’
- ‘Then comes a week or so of "fracking," the hydraulic fracturing process that breaks through the dense, black rock and unlocks the natural gas within.’
- ‘Companies that practice fracking have not disclosed the names of chemicals they use in the past because they say they are "trade secrets."’
- ‘Even then the water only trickled until they used a technique called "fracking," short for hydro-fracturing.’
- ‘At issue is a drilling practice called 'fracking', in which water is injected into the ground at high pressure to fracture the layers of shale and release natural gas trapped in the rock.’
1950s: representing an abbreviated form of fracturing.
adverb & adjectiveUS
Used for emphasis or to express annoyance, frustration, impatience, or surprise:‘are you out of your fracking mind?’
1970s: euphemism for fucking, from frack.
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