Final Recommendations regarding Fracking in the Karoo.docx - Final Recommendations Fracking in the Karoo With a harsh climate common droughts

Final Recommendations regarding Fracking in the Karoo.docx...

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Final RecommendationsFracking in the KarooWith a harsh climate, common droughts, temperatures that fluctuate 25between day and night. Maximum temperatures above 30° and minimumbelow freezing. Rainfall sparse between 100mm to 500mm. The Karoo isa semi-arid desert environment that is rather unique throughout theworld with a unique and varied ecosystem.Shallow, lime-rich soils cover a large region(Watkeys 1999), which support the mainlyscrub and grassy flora with occasional treesand taller woody shrubs mostly found alongthe watercourses (Palmer and Hoffman1977), underlain by sediments of DwykaFormation (Lloyd 1999). Karoo doleritesdykes and sills formed when molten rockintruded into pre-existing shale rocks. The dolerites form the koppies andmountainous regions.The fascinating fossil record to befound in the Karoo go back more than3 billion years. Rocks and fossils oftheareaindicatediverseenvironmental changes that werepresent in the region over hundreds ofmillions of years (Dean and Milton1999). Greenstones of Kaapvaalcraton in northeast contain unicellularand biogenic filamentous structures, signs of some of the earliest formsof life (Engel et al. 1968, Meadows and Watkeys 1999). Dinosaur andmammal-like fossils of the region are well-known worldwide and haveprovided evidence regarding the origin of mammals (Lloyd 1999). The main drainage of the Karoo comprises the Orange River basin,getting water seasonally (Lloyd 1999). There are several water pans
(Small pond-like bodies of water), the largest of which is the Grootvloer-Verneukpan. These play an important part in the fish migrations. Certainspecies need to reach their breeding grounds. When there is sufficientrainfall the system provides a link between the Orange and Sak rivers,enabling an interchange of indigenous fish and other aquatic organisms.

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