Mining and Fracking

Tanya M. Rivera Flores


Mining is the process or industry of obtaining coal or other minerals from a mine.

Types of mining:

Surface is used to extract minerals and metals near to the surface of the Earth. Some examples are:

  • Strip, the practice of mining a seam of mineral.
  • Open pit, extracts rocks or minerals from the Earth.
  • Mountain top removal, form of coal mining that uses explosives to blast off the top of some Appalachian mountains.

Subsurface consists of digging tunnels or shafts into the Earth to reach buried ore deposits. Some examples are:

  • Slope, a method of accessing valuable geological material.
  • Drift, accesses the desired material by making an approximate horizontal cut into a side of the Earth.
  • Shaft, involves drilling a mine shaft that is a vertical passageway to an underground mine.


Fracking is the process of extracting natural gas from shale rock layers deep within the Earth.

  • It's done by creating horizontal veins off a vertical well, then pumping that horizontal well full of water at an exremely high pressure.
  • It causes fissures in the rock that branch off, releasing gas, oil or water into the cracks created.