Fracking Compounds Found in Wyoming Aquifer

Category:  BloggERy
Tuesday, November 15th, 2011 at 8:26 PM
Fracking Compounds Found in Wyoming Aquifer by Jay Stevens
Vanity Fair

A ProPublica report reveals that the EPA found chemical compounds associated with fracking in the aquifer below Pavillion, Wyoming, an area that "has been drilled extensively for natural gas over the last two decades and is home to hundreds of gas wells."

Apparently residents have been long complaining about their water -- the EPA tested their tap water, found chemical contamination, and drilled monitoring wells into the aquifer to "get a more precise picture of the extent of the contamination."

The energy companies drilling the area denied their work caused the contamination. Still...

...the chemical compounds the EPA detected are consistent with those produced from drilling processes, including one -- a solvent called 2-Butoxyethanol (2-BE) -- widely used in the process of hydraulic fracturing. The agency said it had not found contaminants such as nitrates and fertilizers that would have signaled that agricultural activities were to blame.

The wells also contained benzene at 50 times the level that is considered safe for people, as well as phenols -- another dangerous human carcinogen -- acetone, toluene, naphthalene and traces of diesel fuel.

The EPA said the water samples were saturated with methane gas that matched the deep layers of natural gas being drilled for energy. The gas did not match the shallower methane that the gas industry says is naturally occurring in water, a signal that the contamination was related to drilling and was less likely to have come from drilling waste spilled above ground.

Here's what you should take away from this report: Fracking is a danger to the water supply wherever it occurs. Anyone who tells you otherwise is a f*cking liar.

Erie Reader: Vol. 6, No. 15
Now Available — Pick It Up Today

CURRENT

Antisemitic Comments Lead to Closure of Live Chat Feed

Ted Cruz delivers speech at RNC, minus the endorsement.

The streets are, um, somewhat alive in downtown Cleveland. 

Tom Taylor took life’s knocks and turned nothing into something. 

This reimagined landscape has been installed at the Erie Art Museum. 

IN THIS ISSUE

Tom Taylor took life’s knocks and turned nothing into something. 

This reimagined landscape has been installed at the Erie Art Museum. 

Outlining the vibrant arts industry success story.

John Nemeth and Samantha Fish take the first August slot of the 8 Great Tuesdays concert series.

ORBS is a band formed from the creative overflow of musicians whose muses could not be contained into one project. 

Schickalay’s is serving up an American roots-music jamboree with long-revered jam masters Donna the Buffalo and Eric Brewer & Friends.

Hannah Georgas’ third full-length album casts a dark, indie-pop shadow. 

Agriculture is this year’s theme and North East is the destination.

Tyler Smilo: troubadour

It’ll be a night of folky, acoustic melodies and beautiful harmonies.