Posts Tagged fracking
Sharon Wilson gives us the scoop at Earth island Journal:
…authorities either lack the resources to deal with the air pollution, water contamination and other problems that accompany natural gas production; are limited in their response by inadequate laws and regulations; or continue in the long Texas tradition of favoring the oil and gas industry at the expense of citizens. Texas is just one of the places across the country where OGAP is working with communities impacted by the nation’s natural gas boom. Our new report gives voice to the families and communities on the front lines of a public health crisis that is spreading from the Barnett Shale to other parts of the state. It pulls together for the first time detailed results of air and water testing as well as health effects data linking residents’ symptoms to toxic chemicals used in drilling and hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”).
What’s most urgently needed is a new attitude: “Regulators and elected officials must protect residents whose health and safety are threatened, rather than industry profits.”
Andrew Revkin and Abrahm Lustgarten discuss fracking (27 minutes). This discussion is going to become more and more intense as fracking itself becomes more intense. Fracking makes more natural gas available than before, but at what cost? Do we even know how to estimate the costs? What about the physician’s oath: Do no harm?
From The New York Times:
A blowout at a natural gas well in rural northern Pennsylvania spilled thousands of gallons of chemical-laced water on Wednesday, contaminating a stream and forcing the evacuation of seven families who live nearby as crews struggled to stop the gusher.
See Catskill Mountainkeeper for more information and more links.
They’re at it again.
The New York Times informs us that “Oil and gas companies injected hundreds of millions of gallons of hazardous or carcinogenic chemicals into wells in more than 13 states from 2005 to 2009, according to an investigation by Congressional Democrats.” The wells are being drilled to tap reserves of natural gas contained in deep rock formation. The chemicals are injected along with water and sand to release the gas. The process is known as hydraulic fracturing, aka hydrofracking, aka fracking.
Frankly, this sounds like one of those deals where they don’t really know what they’re doing. So you try this and that and, if it works, it works, and you keep on trying:
Some ingredients mixed into the hydraulic fracturing fluids were common and generally harmless, like salt and citric acid. Others were unexpected, like instant coffee and walnut hulls, the report said. Many ingredients were “extremely toxic,” including benzene, a known human carcinogen, and lead.
Instant coffee and walnut shells! Shall we try a little castor oil? Maybe a little ipecac? How about some eye of newt? Toe of frog? Then comes the wool of bat and tongue of dog.
Maybe dance a little jig while they’re at it.