What would you do if your water that was once healthy, and drinkable, suddenly turns into a toxic health hazard? Well call the lawyers and sue! Yeah, that will help, right? It may help put more focus on the problem, but will it solve anything? Are they going to suddenly stop the hydraulic fracturing process? I think not, whatever these law suits costs big oil, it most certainly won’t stop them.
Let’s go over it again; Hydraulic Fracturing is the process to harvest natural gas from the Earth. The process involves injecting a water/sand/and?? who knows what else into a very deep hole in the ground. During this process, the Earth’s core is literally filled up with holes, letting this toxic soup spew into the cracks. Where does the toxic water go? Well, some soaks into the ground where it will contaminate the soil. some will also end up in the water supply.
There is currently no way of knowing what all is in fracking water, so there is no way to decontaminate it. Water filters will help, but there are many unknowns contained in fracking water.
Law suits will draw more attention to the problem, but it may not solve a thing. The people bringing the suit may get a big payoff, and that might help them some, but by now, not only is their water contaminated, but the people may even be ill from exposure. So the cash they get, may just cover some of the medical bills that will no doubt begin to pile up, if they haven’t already.
Kudos to the plaintiffs, I sincerely do hope they get something. Shame on “Big Oil” for destroying our drinking water, our land, our food supply, and our families.
So really, what are we going to do when hydraulic fracturing as we know it today, destroys all the air and water? Well, we humans can wear masks, filter our water, (hopefully removing contaminants, even thought we don’t know what they are) and attempt to keep ourselves safe. But, what about our food supply? We cannot stop animals from drinking water, we can’t stop them from breathing contaminated air.
There are many instances of animal illness and death that are rightly being blamed on hydraulic fracturing.
Thirty of 200 ewes died or were euthanatized during a 21-day period following a 1-day accidental exposure to natural gas condensate, a complex mixture of hydrocarbons obtained during collection of natural gas from wells. Despite access to potable well water, the poisoned ewes willingly consumed toxic doses of condensate that contaminated surface water. Eight animals died without premonitory signs; the remainder became ill over the course of a few days to 3 weeks. The principal cause of mortality was aspiration pneumonia, but myocardial degeneration and necrosis, renal tubular damage, gastritis, enteritis, and meningeal edema and hyperemia were also observed. Gas chromatographic analysis identified chemical traces of the hydrocarbons in the tissues, and “fingerprinting,” the process of matching chromatographic tracings, provided forensic proof of the contamination source. Atomic absorption spectroscopy and cholinesterase analyses were performed to eliminate the possibility of toxicosis by heavy metal contaminants or other constituents. This appears to be the first reported incidence of natural gas condensate toxicity involving sheep or other ruminants. Although the available literature presents a suggestive pattern of clinical signs and pathologic lesions of petroleum product poisoning, diagnostic investigations should employ detailed analytic examination because each source of petroleum hydrocarbons contains unique sets of components that may produce different toxic effects.
1Departments of Veterinary Pathology (RA, JEM), Pharmacology & Toxicology (HJB), and Medicine (DAM), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA
Dr. R. Adler, Department of Toxicology, Marion Merrell Dow, Inc., PO Box 68470, Indianapolis, IN 46268-0470 (USA).
ChefsForMarcellus.org is posting about livestock being poisoned by the effects of fracking.
Upstate cattle farmer Ken Jaffe has shared the full text of an e-mail sent by Dr. Christopher Portier, head of the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) National Center for Environmental Health and Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). According to Jaffe, this e-mail “represents a major change in mainstream scientific thinking about public health risks of gas drilling.” For the first time, according to Jaffe, a federal official with responsibility for public health has stated openly that he can’t guarantee the safety of fracking, and that he has “data of concern” that makes him worried. READ MORE
How does fracking affect food safety? No one knows
We’ve all heard about efforts to protect New York City’s watershed from the risks of hydraulic fracturing. Now there is a new effort to protect NYC’s foodshed. Chefs for the Marcellus is a group of chefs, restaurateurs, and other food professionals dedicated to protecting the foodshed that supplies much of the produce, dairy and meat products, and beer and wine that they purchase for their establishments. Many of the farms in the New York City area are organic but, even if they aren’t, they depend on clean air, water and soil to produce their fresh food and beverages.
Yesterday I blogged about how more research is needed on the health impacts of living near, working near, or otherwise being exposed to oil and gas exploration and production operations, including fracking. This should include research on the food products that are produced near these activities. Farmers and ranchers around the country have reported various unusual health symptoms in their livestock that they believe may be linked to nearby oil and gas operations, including birth defects, stillbirths, blindness, hair loss, poisoning leading to death, low or no milk production, low fertility, smaller litters, and additional unexplained illnesses. A Pennsylvania farmer growing heirloom tomatoes and wine grapes has reported that his water tests found extremely high levels of arsenic, benzene, mercury, and other toxic contaminants after fracking occurred on his property. What is the risk if someone eats any of these food products?
NRDC believes the USDA and independent experts should be investigating the potential impacts on food safety for livestock and crops located near oil and gas extraction sites, including implications for organic certification.
Testing and more investigation should have been done before fracking was allowed to happen. It seems like everyone wants to “be green” except for “big oil” They just want more “green”.
Got an email from the EPA today. Did you know the EPA has a list of what toxins are found in your area? What a wonderful tool!
Its really easy to use, simply go to Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Program enter your zip code in the space provided. I tried mine, since I live in a very small town, there was no data, so I got the zip code for a larger nearby city, Fort Wayne, Indiana. The results show what facility the toxins are coming from and what they are.
You will get a spread sheet with facilities listed. These are live links and will take you to their specific EPA page. There you will see where the facility is located, and what it is emitting.
On the facility page, there is a list. There are some blue boxed check marks that also click-able and contain even more information.
This database was recently updated, so you can be sure the report is accurate. Why not go on over to the EPA site and see what toxins are in your area? Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Program You might be surprised and maybe even a little enraged!
TRI is a database containing data on disposal or other releases of over 600 toxic chemicals from thousands of U.S. facilities and information about how facilities manage those chemicals through recycling, energy recovery, and treatment. One of TRI’s primary purposes is to inform communities about toxic chemical releases to the environment.
Amy Sancetta/AP With the skyline of Youngstown, Ohio, in the distance, a brine injection well owned by Northstar Disposal Services LLC is seen in Youngstown on Jan. 4. The company has halted operations at the well, which disposes of brine used in gas and oil drilling, after a series of small earthquakes hit the Youngstown area.
January 5, 2012
Small earthquakes in Ohio and Arkansas associated with hydraulic fracturing for natural gas have taken many people by surprise. Gas industry executives say there’s no hard evidence that their activities are causing these quakes. But some scientists say it’s certainly possible; in fact, people have been causing quakes for years.
In the 1960s, geologists realized that gold mines in South Africa had created small earthquakes. Caverns dug into the earth thousands of feet below the surface collapsed. The “pancake” effect caused quakes — in one case a magnitude-5.2 temblor.
Since then, scientists have found that even pumping water away from underground mines (to keep them from flooding) changes the dynamics of stress in rock formations enough to trigger a quake.
Some rock is saturated with water — the water occupies pores between rock particles. This creates what’s called “pore pressure” and keeps the formation in a sort of equilibrium. If you suck the water out, particles tend to collapse in on themselves: the rock compresses. Add water, and you push particles apart. So moving water around underground can affect the stresses on those formations.
Now let’s say there’s a fault in the earth. If the water content around the fault is changed, the fault might slip. If the water gets into the fault itself, it can lubricate the fault and trigger a quake.
Hydraulic fracturing pumps a lot of water underground, where it’s used to crack the rock and liberate gas. This may cause tiny quakes, but fracking goes on for a day or two, and the quakes are small.
One way to avoid creating earthquakes is not to inject fracking wastewater into waste wells, but to recycle it instead. The state of Pennsylvania tried that, but they found that wastewater treatment plants couldn’t get all of the toxic material out of fracking water, and the “cleaned up” water returned to rivers wasn’t clean enough. So well operators in the state decided to ship wastewater to Ohio, where it has been going down into wells.
Today, I was looking around online for some more great fracking information to pass on to you, my loyal readers. Wow! There is a lot of news popping up all over. Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and even Canada, are all suffering the bad side effects caused by raping the Earth for her treasures.
Jessica Ernst, “We were used as test tubes” a post over on Life Essential-Water. Jessica is from Canada, and believe it or not, they are running neck and neck with the USA and hydraulic fracturing wells. I really do not understand how the engineers and other planners of this destruction figure that breaking apart the inner shell of our Mother Earth will not cause any kind of damage. Earthquakes, accidental spills of fracking fluid, intentional dumping of the used fracking fluids, contaminating water and land, killing fish and wild life, and yes, even humans.
This story out of Michigan is just a sample of how far big oil will go to get what they want.
(Reuters) – Late in the summer of 2010, hundreds of farmers in northern Michigan were fuming.
All had signed leases with local brokers permitting drillers to tap natural gas and oil beneath their land. All were demanding thousands of dollars in bonuses they had been promised in exchange. But none knew for certain whom to go after.
That’s because the company rejecting their leases hadn’t signed them to begin with. In fact, the company issuing the rejections wasn’t much of a business at all. It was a shell company – a paper-only firm with no real operations – called Northern Michigan Exploration LLC.
One jilted land owner, Eric Boyer-Lashuay, called to complain to the broker who had handled his lease. Northern, he recalls saying, is “a shell company … a blank door with no one behind it.”
Today, he puts it this way: “It was all a fake, all a scam.”
Northern has voided hundreds of land deals, and was indeed a facade – a shell company created so that one of America’s largest energy companies could conceal its role in the leasing spree, a Reuters investigation has found. Oklahoma-based Chesapeake Energy Corp. (CHK.N), the nation’s second-largest gas driller, was behind the entire operation.
And let us not forget the EPA. They are supposed to protect the environment, right? Well I would like to know just how this helps at all:
EPA report: Pavillion water samples improperly tested
By JEREMY FUGLEBERG Star-Tribune energy reporter | Posted: Tuesday, December 27, 2011
From the moment the Pavillion water samples were bottled by testers with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the clock began to tick.
The testers zipped the bottles tightly in clear plastic bags, surrounded them with ice in two small coolers, and shipped them overnight to the agency’s laboratory in Golden, Colo., for analysis.
There, the samples waited as the deadline neared for them to be accurately tested. By the time the samples were tested, the EPA-mandated hold times had come and gone.
“Maintenance of the laboratory floor” caused the hold, according to the EPA’s lab data report on the April 2011 samples.
The overdue analysis of those samples was part of the data that underpinned the EPA’s eventual conclusions, released in a draft report in early December. The agency’s key conclusion: Natural gas wells in the area, most developed using hydraulic fracturing, might have harmed groundwater.
The report was quickly slammed by the oil and gas industry but trumpeted by environmental groups. Yet the EPA’s own data — including details not mentioned in the draft report — indicates the agency’s conclusions are partially based on improperly analyzed samples from six private drinking-water wells and two EPA-drilled deep monitoring wells in Pavillion.
The EPA also found contamination in pure water control samples, didn’t purge the test wells properly before gathering samples and didn’t mention in its report whether it tested water carried by a truck used in well drilling, say officials with the Wyoming Water Development Commission who, because of their expertise on water wells, reviewed the EPA’s publicly available information.
I am going to end this post with a video. This does a really good job of explaining the whole fracking process and what it does to the environment.