Fracking Impacts - Water Contamination

Thousands of cases of water contamination with toxic and carcinogenic substances caused by unconventional oil and gas extraction have been documented including in Pennsylvania, Wyoming, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Alabama, Ohio, Alberta and Queensland. Continue reading

Chemical Contaminants Detected In Two Different Water Wells (Purple And Orange) In Pavilion, Wyoming Which Sits In The Middle Of A Gas Field (Click To Enlarge)

EPA report on fracking in Texas raises new concerns (LA Times, December 2013) Over three years, the EPA has sampled water in Dimock, Pa., Pavillion, Wyo., and Parker County after residents complained that their water had turned foul once natural gas drilling began nearby and in each case the EPA found evidence of contamination but declined to pursue further water sampling or disciplinary action against the energy companies

Study: High Levels of Arsenic in Water Near Gas Wells (Texas Tribune, July 2013) Study of 100 water wells in the Barnett Shale, Texas found dangerously high levels of arsenic in third of wells that are closer to natural gas extraction sites

Sunday Times review of DEP drilling records reveals water damage, murky testing methods (Scranton Times-Tribune, May 2013) State environmental regulators determined that oil and gas development contaminated the water supplies for at least 161 Pennsylvania homes, farms, churches and businesses between 2008 and the fall of 2012

Drilling spills reaching Colorado groundwater; state mulls test rules (Denver Post, December 2012) Oil and gas in Colorado have contaminated groundwater, including with cancer-causing benzene, in 17 percent of the 2,078 spills and slow releases that companies reported to state regulators over the past five years, state data show

Canadian authorities: Fracking operation contaminated groundwater (Natural Resources Defense Council, December 2012) Canadian Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) investigation into a September, 2011 groundwater contamination incident caused by gelled propane fracking of a gas well in Alberta, finds elevated levels of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX) remain a year later

Pennsylvania Report Left Out Data on Poisons in Water Near Gas Site (New York Times, November 2012) Pennsylvania officials reported incomplete test results that omitted data on some toxic metals that were found in drinking water taken from a private well near a natural gas drilling site

Diesel in Water Near Fracking Confirms EPA Tests Wyoming Disputes (Bloomberg, September 2012) A retest of water in Pavillion, Wyoming by the US Geological Survey, confirms evidence of contamination by methane, ethane, diesel compounds and phenol, which the EPA had also identified in its report last year

Carcinogens found in CSG project (Sydney Morning Herald, August 2011) The Queensland government is investigating a Arrow Energy coal seam gas (CSG) field west of Brisbane after the discovery of cancer-causing chemicals benzene, toluene and xylene in five boresholes during routine tests

Environmental Working Group Reveals EPA Knowledge of Water Contamination From Fracking (DeSmog Blog, August 2011) Fracking has been known by the US Environmental Protection Agency to contaminate underground sources of drinking water since 1987

EPA Finds Compound Used in Fracking in Wyoming Aquifer (Pro Publica, November 2010) A pair of environmental monitoring wells drilled into an aquifer in Pavillion, Wyo., found high levels of cancer-causing compounds and at least one chemical commonly used in hydraulic fracturing, consistent with samples collected from at least 42 homes in the area since 2008

Buried Secrets: Is Natural Gas Drilling Endangering U.S. Water Supplies? (Pro Publica, November 2008) More than 1,000 other cases of contamination have been documented by courts and state and local governments in Colorado, New Mexico, Alabama, Ohio and Pennsylvania

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