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Fracking and Our Groundwater


by Leslie Gabriel September 01, 2014

Bull Dinky !!! The oil and gas industry would have you believe that fracking is perfectly safe for the environment. Take this quote from Steve Everley at Energy InDepth: “Experts and regulators, meanwhile, have stated time and again that there is little to no evidence of 'fracking” ever contaminating groundwater.”

This isn't just a smokescreen. It's a dangerous fiction – one that is threatening drinking water all over the United States.

Fracking Waste in Our Groundwater ...

“Welcome to Coshocton, OH,” a pair of billboards on State Route 36 reads. “Home to waste injection wells.” The billboards go on to draw Biblical parallels to the fracking industry and their reputation for “poisoning” water.

It's a sentiment echoed all around the United States by both concerned residents and scientists. As early as 2011, researchers from Duke University found that groundwater near hydraulically fractured wells in both New York and Pennsylvania contained 17 time more methane than wells in fracking-free zones. The study also found that many of these groundwater sources had enough methane to be classified as an “immediate action” hazard by the U.S. Department of the Interior.

In Pennsylvania, researchers have found high levels of contaminants in local groundwater that are directly linked to a nearby wastewater impoundment.

New York and Pennsylvania aren't the only examples, either. The Environmental Protection Agency reported finding fracking contaminants in Wyoming back in 2011. Not only did the EPA find high levels of methane, but they also found glycols, alcohols and unsafe levels of benzene.

Illegal Injection of Diesel ...

If leaking storage facilities and undisclosed chemical injections aren't enough, several gas and oil companies are illegally injecting diesel into their wells.

Diesel injection became illegal in 1997, but the Environmental Integrity Project has found at least 351 wells between 2010 and 2014 that have injected diesel despite regulations. Colorado and Texas are the two states that have reported the largest amounts of illegally injected diesel, but researchers found that 32,950 gallons of diesel have been illegally injected all over the United States.

Diesel contains a variety of harmful substances, including benzene, xylene, toluene and ethylbenzene. These chemicals are known to spread quickly through ground water, and they can cause cancer as well as nervous disorders.

The fracking industry wants you to think that groundwater contamination has never been a problem. The facts prove otherwise. Whether you live in an area affected by fracking or not, it's time to take a stand: tell the fracking industry and it's supporters that the pollution of the world's most vital resource needs to end now.




Leslie Gabriel
Leslie Gabriel

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