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Video 1 – ARD Munich Report – Cancer clusters around RWE Frack sites (English Sub)

Whilst shale gas exploration is a relatively new phenomena in the UK, it seems that the oil and gas industry has been busy fracking up Europe for some time. I saw a link to the film below only last week on twitter. Rural communities in the north of Germany have been living in blissful ignorance in close proximity to fracking sites. They have suddenly been hit by an increased rate of new and rare cancers, with as many as 10 families affected in a community of only 27 households. This is due to the greed of RWE who have been busy hiding the evidence… sorry, pumping away produced water through a network of plastic pipes. Pipes that allow benzene to accumulate and eventually leach through them into the soil. They should have used more expensive pipes with aluminium linings to prevent this, but they claim ignorance and I’m guessing that would have cut the profit margin. Oh well, a few cases of cancer in locals. A price worth paying for the shareholders.

Video 2 – ARD Monitor – Excon Mobile multiple reinjection of produced water. Manfred Scholle of Gelsenwasser furious that he only found out through the press (German)

A “furious” chief executive of a water company, responsible for the safe drinking water of 1,000,000 residents discovers to his horror that¬† fracking been taking place in his area. He is not notified, advised or even asked, but has to learn of this information through the local press! After conferring with other water comapnies it appears this is widespread and has involved the use of a number of chemicals that are known to be toxic. Manfred Sholles greatest concern is that nobody can predict where the fractures caused by fracking will extendto and that are are no guarantees that it will not contaminate groundwater and therefore drinking water. A local town councillor makes the point that Exxon-Mobil were granted their first exploratory licences in 2008 but that local town councillors have only just discovered that chemicals were injected into the ground. Apparently no mandatory disclosure is required! Negligence or ignorance on the part of the council…. seemingly a pattern that is being repeated globally.

Video 3 – ARD Munich Report – 2010, thousands of tonnes of toxic benzene laden soil removed from established Fracking sites. (German)

This third film terrifies me. it shows a frack site in operation. It doesnt fill me with confidence about health and safety. It looks extremely industrial, messy, dirty and this from one of the largest power companies in the world who also operate nuclear power stations. The report goes on to state that the German government confirm in a written reply to questions by the program that there are indeed risks to groundwater from fracking,¬† contamination by chemicals and danger caused by radio active produced water storage sites. More specifically there is concern over the practise of re- injecting produced water into multiple frack jobs thus increasing the concentration of chemicals and materials leached from the shale… To date there have been hundreds of fracks across Germany. Each one involving millions of gallons of water and tonnes of chemicals.

Video 4 – Anti Fracking campaigners made this video in April 2010 (German)

Lastly a fluffy anti fracking film made by German activists. Each person or group citing the reasons why they want to stop fracking. But, its dated April 2011! At that time I don’t think I was alone in my relative ignorance of fracking or the other extreme energy techniques that have appeared. Quietly and almost unobtrusively the big corporations and governments are pushing through with their plans to extract every last drop of fossil fuels regardless of the cost to human health and the environment. A last ditch attempt to keep up the facade of capitalism and ignore our dependancy on energy.

 

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