Just as with other great words, the word environment means different things. You might say that a cave woman twenty thousand years ago sweeping out the cave was improving the environment. Many people improving the environment think only in terms of the air they breathe in their hometown and the water in the aquifer under their hometown. My guess is very few are thinking centuries ahead or thousand of years ahead, but that's what we have to do.
I look at it this way... For centuries now, man has done everything he can to destroy, defile, and interfere with nature: clear-cutting forests, strip-mining mountains, poisoning the atmosphere, over-fishing the oceans, polluting the rivers and lakes, destroying wetlands and aquifers... so when nature strikes back, and smacks him on the head and kicks him in the nuts, I enjoy that. I have absolutely no sympathy for human beings whatsoever. None. And no matter what kind of problem humans are facing, whether it's natural or man-made, I always hope it gets worse.
Today, our incentives aren't set up well - you can make a lot of money burning fossil fuels, digging up wetlands, pumping fossil water out of aquifers that will take 10,000 years to recharge, overfishing species in international waters that are close to collapse, and so on.
Capitalism rules worldwide, and a society whose economic fabric depends on constant growth requires that its citizens have ever-expanding needs and wants... In the West, it will take one with soul force equal to Gandhi's to change the prevailing dogma of ever increasing GNP. We may be forced to change our profligate ways some day, when the soil is depleted, the aquifers drained, the icecaps melted, and all the oil wells pumped dry. But the crisis will wait another fifty years or so; we'll leave those problems to a generation yet unborn.
There have been over a million wells hydraulically fractured in the history of the industry, and there is not one, not one, reported case of a freshwater aquifer having ever been contaminated from hydraulic fracturing. Not one.
The aquifer [is] the water table people need to keep secure. Nature has this incredible system of water purification under the ground. Ground water is much better to drink than surface water because it filters out the bacteria that can cause all sorts of problems.