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(Business Insider)   Penn Dept of Environmental Protection: "So we found high levels of benzene and arsenic in the bodies of residents near your fracking sites." Natural Gas companies: "We didn't ask you to look for that." PDEP: "Oh yeah, sounds good. Nevermind"   (businessinsider.com) divider line 123
    More: Scary, Radical Environmentalism, Western Pennsylvania, toxic metal, toxicology testing, petroleum industry, drinking water, Pennsylvania, NYSE Composite  
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3464 clicks; posted to Politics » on 04 Nov 2012 at 3:56 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-04 07:13:42 AM

chuggernaught: chuggernaught: Wait. Wait. Wait. Pumping poison into the ground can lead to poison being in the enviroment? The Hell you say!

Do any of the oil men who endorse fracking tolerate fracking anywhere near their* homes?

FTFM

/it's early


Meh, for all intensive purposes, its the same dam thing.
 
2012-11-04 07:16:29 AM
Regulation is soshalism!
 
2012-11-04 07:19:42 AM

cirby: "Toxicology tests on the plaintiffs found the presence of toluene, benzene and arsenic in their bodies, according to the complaint."

...and how much did they find in the drinking water around the site?

How much was naturally occurring?

What level of "contamination" was found? Parts per million? Billion? Trillion? 

The first rule of biased science writing: toss out a list of chemicals "found" somewhere, but not the amounts, and never tell anyone that they've been found in the water there since well before humans moved onto the continent...


So if I dig through fark history to the beginning of fracking I should find your posts arguing against all fracking until we get a solid baseline for the residents and water supply of any given, right?

/or will I see you on the 'let's try it and see?' bandwagon?
 
2012-11-04 07:37:57 AM

EnviroDude: If the frack wells are shallow and near the water producing sands, then they might interconnect. But my experience shows most residential water wells are shallow (
Anyway, the easiest way to remove Arsenic (naturally occurring), and BTEX is to install carbon filtration systems at each of the drinking water well heads.


You know why nobody asked your opinion?

Because at exactly no point in the past has anything you ever said suggested it's worth anything.
 
2012-11-04 07:39:17 AM

EnviroDude: Ed Finnerty: EnviroDude:

Now, if you dispute that arsenic is naturally occurring, or that a carbon filtration system would remove it and BTEX from drinking water, then you simply demonstrate to all that you would have done better not to reply to the post as it works wonderfully.

Or do you dispute that?


I'll dispute half of it. Carbon filtration will remove BTEX from drinking water, that much is correct. However, activated carbon, by itself, will not remove any significant amounts of arsenic from water. There have been some studies showing that iron-impregnated carbon will do so, but as far as I know, that is not an approved arsenic removal method and I doubt anyone is even selling any such filters. The activated carbon filters people buy at Home Depot will do next to nothing for people looking to remove arsenic from potable water.
 
vpb [TotalFark]
2012-11-04 07:41:45 AM

EnviroDude: If the frack wells are shallow and near the water producing sands, then they might interconnect. But my experience shows most residential water wells are shallow (
Anyway, the easiest way to remove Arsenic (naturally occurring), and BTEX is to install carbon filtration systems at each of the drinking water well heads.


Except that they didn't know that they needed to do that since the contamination was covered up?

Besides, activated carbon often adds arsenic to water rather than removing it. Link 

But what they hell, people should be glad to sacrifice their health to help the job creators meet Wall Streets expectations, right?
 
2012-11-04 08:03:52 AM

starsrift: chuggernaught: chuggernaught: Wait. Wait. Wait. Pumping poison into the ground can lead to poison being in the enviroment? The Hell you say!

Do any of the oil men who endorse fracking tolerate fracking anywhere near their* homes?

FTFM

/it's early

Meh, for all intensive purposes, its the same dam thing.


i.chzbgr.com


/if you're going for the obvious pun, might as well go hole hog
 
2012-11-04 08:17:22 AM

More_Like_A_Stain: [i.chzbgr.com image 500x500]

/if you're going for the obvious pun, might as well go hole hog


Dam, mist that one.
 
2012-11-04 08:33:42 AM

starsrift: More_Like_A_Stain: [i.chzbgr.com image 500x500]

/if you're going for the obvious pun, might as well go hole hog

Dam, mist that one.


3.bp.blogspot.com
 
2012-11-04 08:34:24 AM

cirby: "Toxicology tests on the plaintiffs found the presence of toluene, benzene and arsenic in their bodies, according to the complaint."

...and how much did they find in the drinking water around the site?

How much was naturally occurring?

What level of "contamination" was found? Parts per million? Billion? Trillion? 

The first rule of biased science writing: toss out a list of chemicals "found" somewhere, but not the amounts, and never tell anyone that they've been found in the water there since well before humans moved onto the continent...


Right here, in the deposition by the DEP scientist.

It's a SCRIBD upload of the letter from the law office to Sec Krancer with ALL the juicy scientific details details and includes that scientists sworn under oath testimony

The real concern is the heavy metals that are in the water. Metals that are wholly associated and known to be associated with drilling activities.
Heavy Metals which the PA DEP has specifically chosen NOT to include in their public and private reports, in spite of the fact that the lab tested for them 

It is only biased to people who are too intellectually lazy and or stupidly gullible to do their own research

But hey, it's FARK, you're expected to live DOWN to our expectations...so, Have at it.
 
2012-11-04 08:58:52 AM

chuggernaught: Do any of the oil men who endorse fracking tolerate fracking anywhere near there homes?


No, but I do require people near my home to be able to distinguish "their" from "there".
 
2012-11-04 09:24:35 AM
Wait a second subby,

Are you telling me that the PA Commonwealth Government is bought and paid for by the oil and gas lobby?

Someone grab me my fainting chair.
 
2012-11-04 09:25:13 AM
So, there is a post that lists all the metals, and the exact amounts. I wonder how the conservitives are going to move the goalposts? A little hint: If you are going to repeal the healthcare act, it's probably not a good idea to threaten our health with greed.
 
2012-11-04 09:25:48 AM
If you have a well why wouldnt you be testing it every year for your own safety?

Why wait till you get sick to see if that horse farm uphill has been leaching coliform into your well.....or e coli from your own sand mound?

Supposedly even that faucet being lit on fire in gasland was a hoax.....the reason they started drilling in that area was because there was so much gas you could set your faucet on fire....
 
2012-11-04 09:26:43 AM

Girl From The North Country: I think the best course of action is to remove as many regulations from business as possible because the free market will ensure they do the right thing.


I wish there was a Sad but True tag, or even just a Sad tag.
 
2012-11-04 09:28:04 AM
I meant that as right wingers and free marketers will probably make this argument, not as we should actually trust businesses to do the right thing.

/need more coffee
 
2012-11-04 09:29:44 AM
Why can't they test the well water *before* they drill, so they have a baseline for comparison? Or did I miss that part in the story?
 
2012-11-04 09:32:05 AM

moothemagiccow: Terrified Asexual Forcemeat: EnviroDude: spigot

In America, which is where this site is, we call them faucets.

It's called a tap, Alistair


I'm sorry, we call them mysterious water tubes around here.
 
2012-11-04 09:35:43 AM

Mrtraveler01: Wait a second subby,

Are you telling me that the PA Commonwealth Government is bought and paid for by the oil and gas lobby?

Someone grab me my fainting chair.


You ever notice that all these complex conspiracies against the people of the us involve hundreds of people who are able to keep their lips sealed about an ongoing conspiracy and it only happens when the dumb republican party that cant tie thier own shoe laces are in power?

Either they are smarter than you think or there is no conspiracy...

I wish i drew the look the other way republicans instead of the libby mcenviroweenie when they inspect my dams for seepage after a 3 day rainstorm

/its rainwater saturating the ground... Come back when its been sunshine for 3 days
 
2012-11-04 09:35:59 AM

doglover: Terrified Asexual Forcemeat: EnviroDude: spigot

In America, which is where this site is, we call them faucets.

Actually in Pittsburgh they're called "spickets"


"Spickets" sounds racist. Call them "wet-taps."
 
2012-11-04 09:42:02 AM

Giltric: Mrtraveler01: Wait a second subby,

Are you telling me that the PA Commonwealth Government is bought and paid for by the oil and gas lobby?

Someone grab me my fainting chair.

You ever notice that all these complex conspiracies against the people of the us involve hundreds of people who are able to keep their lips sealed about an ongoing conspiracy and it only happens when the dumb republican party that cant tie thier own shoe laces are in power?

Either they are smarter than you think or there is no conspiracy...

I wish i drew the look the other way republicans instead of the libby mcenviroweenie when they inspect my dams for seepage after a 3 day rainstorm

/its rainwater saturating the ground... Come back when its been sunshine for 3 days


I was exaggerating.

But the fact is that PA does very little to regulate this and local governments as well because the oil and gas lobby balk and make a living hell any time a local/state government even suggests that fracking be regulated a little more.

But it's not like PA would do anything anyways, Corbett is a kiss-ass for the oil and gas lobby as it is.
 
2012-11-04 09:44:00 AM

doglover: Terrified Asexual Forcemeat: EnviroDude: spigot

In America, which is where this site is, we call them faucets.

Actually in Pittsburgh they're called "spickets"


Yinz goin' dahntahn to watch the Stillers play?

(Yes I know they're in NY today)
 
2012-11-04 09:47:34 AM

Giltric: Either they are smarter than you think or there is no conspiracy...


Or maybe nobody said it's a conspiracy and merely pointed out that it's painfully obvious and the voters of PA just don't give a shiat. More than $1.2m in donations from Oil & Gas interests to the governor alone during his election campaign in 2010, many from out of state. oil & gas was his fourth biggest donor category and second biggest industry donor.

There's no conspiracy. There's no secret. It's perfectly out in the open. The PA government takes a huge amount of money from oil & gas interests and oil & gas operators get huge friendly perks from the PA state government. The people of Pennsylvania could have known all of it if they wanted. Clearly they didn't care. Now they can wallow and die in their own ignorance.
 
2012-11-04 09:58:57 AM

Vegan Meat Popsicle: Giltric: Either they are smarter than you think or there is no conspiracy...

Or maybe nobody said it's a conspiracy and merely pointed out that it's painfully obvious and the voters of PA just don't give a shiat. More than $1.2m in donations from Oil & Gas interests to the governor alone during his election campaign in 2010, many from out of state. oil & gas was his fourth biggest donor category and second biggest industry donor.

There's no conspiracy. There's no secret. It's perfectly out in the open. The PA government takes a huge amount of money from oil & gas interests and oil & gas operators get huge friendly perks from the PA state government. The people of Pennsylvania could have known all of it if they wanted. Clearly they didn't care. Now they can wallow and die in their own ignorance.


So how does the govenor (one person) get everyone who didnt recieve all that money from the oil and gas industry to look the other way? Whats in it for them? Would you abandon your principles or fall in lockstep with Corbett for free?

Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?
 
2012-11-04 10:03:51 AM

Giltric: Vegan Meat Popsicle: Giltric: Either they are smarter than you think or there is no conspiracy...

Or maybe nobody said it's a conspiracy and merely pointed out that it's painfully obvious and the voters of PA just don't give a shiat. More than $1.2m in donations from Oil & Gas interests to the governor alone during his election campaign in 2010, many from out of state. oil & gas was his fourth biggest donor category and second biggest industry donor.

There's no conspiracy. There's no secret. It's perfectly out in the open. The PA government takes a huge amount of money from oil & gas interests and oil & gas operators get huge friendly perks from the PA state government. The people of Pennsylvania could have known all of it if they wanted. Clearly they didn't care. Now they can wallow and die in their own ignorance.

So how does the govenor (one person) get everyone who didnt recieve all that money from the oil and gas industry to look the other way? Whats in it for them? Would you abandon your principles or fall in lockstep with Corbett for free?

Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?


Because any time the Commonwealth or any local government tries to regulate the practice in some way, the oil and gas lobby does it's best to thwart it in any way possible. Regardless of whether it's the Commonwealth or some local township government.

NPR had a great piece on this before.
 
2012-11-04 10:06:25 AM
Having been to PA recently, many Pennsylvanians could use a good dose of benzene and arsenic.
 
2012-11-04 10:11:01 AM

Giltric: libby mcenviroweenie


Ya, no bias from you.

I'll give you a hint about why big energy is allowed to get away with what they get away with. It is one part being able to take nationwide money and toss it in a laser focus at any level of the government working to regulate them, and its a second part people who say and believe stupid bullshiat like that phrase there.

So ya, there is no conspiracy. There is just a nation that is partially corrupt, plenty greedy, and has just enough idiots that seem to enjoy the wool being pulled over their eyes.

And this is coming from someone who isn't convinced fracking is all that bad (all energy sources have significant downsides, and those from fracking may well be better than those from coal - something natural gas could take over for in many ways).

Giltric: Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?


Oh look, a disingenuous deflection. What a surprise.
 
2012-11-04 10:19:41 AM

Smackledorfer: Giltric: libby mcenviroweenie

Ya, no bias from you.

I'll give you a hint about why big energy is allowed to get away with what they get away with. It is one part being able to take nationwide money and toss it in a laser focus at any level of the government working to regulate them, and its a second part people who say and believe stupid bullshiat like that phrase there.

So ya, there is no conspiracy. There is just a nation that is partially corrupt, plenty greedy, and has just enough idiots that seem to enjoy the wool being pulled over their eyes.

And this is coming from someone who isn't convinced fracking is all that bad (all energy sources have significant downsides, and those from fracking may well be better than those from coal - something natural gas could take over for in many ways).

Giltric: Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?

Oh look, a disingenuous deflection. What a surprise.


So it is different...... Thanks

Bsabsvd
 
2012-11-04 10:29:52 AM

Giltric: Smackledorfer: Giltric: libby mcenviroweenie

Ya, no bias from you.

I'll give you a hint about why big energy is allowed to get away with what they get away with. It is one part being able to take nationwide money and toss it in a laser focus at any level of the government working to regulate them, and its a second part people who say and believe stupid bullshiat like that phrase there.

So ya, there is no conspiracy. There is just a nation that is partially corrupt, plenty greedy, and has just enough idiots that seem to enjoy the wool being pulled over their eyes.

And this is coming from someone who isn't convinced fracking is all that bad (all energy sources have significant downsides, and those from fracking may well be better than those from coal - something natural gas could take over for in many ways).

Giltric: Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?

Oh look, a disingenuous deflection. What a surprise.

So it is different...... Thanks

Bsabsvd


Dude, you've earned the scorn you get in this thread.

The PA DEP tested this water and EXPLICITLY chose not to release the full results of that test, contrary to PA Law..

All you concern trolling and deflectionary responses do is show what a colossal douchebag you are.
 
2012-11-04 10:47:29 AM
But benzene is organic!

(I've always been irked by the misappropriation of the word "organic" with reference to food given that all petrochemicals are organic by definition).
 
2012-11-04 11:00:25 AM

washburn777: Natural Gas has the potential to change american energy, and thus we are at a crossroads. Will we slow down this race to frack just long enough to ensure these industry practices that will soon become standard are safe and optimally effective? Or will we rush in guns blazing and just cross our fingers, hoping no innocent families suffer cancer or children born with birth defects due to our all-consuming thirst for profit.


Not to mention Natural Gas prices are pretty damn low. In Alberta, we're shutting in, and storing it underground, waiting for prices to go up. Oh, and sending it to China, where the price is higher.
 
2012-11-04 11:07:17 AM

EnviroDude: If the frack wells are shallow and near the water producing sands, then they might interconnect. But my experience shows most residential water wells are shallow (
Anyway, the easiest way to remove Arsenic (naturally occurring), and BTEX is to install carbon filtration systems at each of the drinking water well heads.


It's unlikely that the contamination is connected to fracking per se. Drinking water and oil sands are generally entirely separate geological strata iirc.

Connected to poor containment procedure of the fracking materials at the surface, i.e. the same kinds of release that you can get if you fark up any chemical procedure? Somewhat more likely. Lack of mixing during the actual procedure doesn't mean that you can fix stupid in related parts of the procedure.

ruta: But benzene is organic!

(I've always been irked by the misappropriation of the word "organic" with reference to food given that all petrochemicals are organic by definition).


Benzene's organic in both senses, typically. It's not usually made synthetically, just purified out of stuff you can pick up off the (well, under the) ground in nature. Hell, it's more organic in the agricultural sense than organic crops, because you don't have the highly unnatural step of growing it in a concentrated field to keep pests away to make it, it's produced by pressure entirely without human interference.

Basically, we should start sticking the "certified FDA Organic" sticker on bottles of benzene and pressure tanks of methane.

//You _can_ make it synthetically, of course, though that's more expensive than just distilling it from crude.
 
2012-11-04 11:13:23 AM

Hebalo: washburn777: Natural Gas has the potential to change american energy, and thus we are at a crossroads. Will we slow down this race to frack just long enough to ensure these industry practices that will soon become standard are safe and optimally effective? Or will we rush in guns blazing and just cross our fingers, hoping no innocent families suffer cancer or children born with birth defects due to our all-consuming thirst for profit.

Not to mention Natural Gas prices are pretty damn low. In Alberta, we're shutting in, and storing it underground, waiting for prices to go up. Oh, and sending it to China, where the price is higher.


And there in, lies the rub.

Even when it's done right,unconventional natural gas development has significant local environmental impact.

Acres and acres of forest, wetlands and farmland are consumed by the wellpads, service roads, pipelines and various storage facilities the industry uses.
If you happen to own a home near this development, you are guaranteed a loss in property value and an increase in insurance costs.
The vast majority of earnings from local development, royalties, salaries and materials, are exported to absentee mineral rights owners, out of state drilling and fracking crews and even some foreign manufacturing of steel casings and machinery.

As well, there is ample evidence of water contamination from this development. You can't drill through an aquifer without putting that aquifer at risk.

And every single one of these companies developing unconventional shale gas wells is begging to be allowed to sell their product overseas.

This was sold to the people pf PA as the bridge fuel that would carry us past oil and gasoline and into renewables.

Now we know that was a lie. Gas storage facilities are full. Wells are flaring across the state, burning off methane and waste, and overseas sale is their next move.

Tell me again why we had to rush this in and develop it willy nilly under a national energy security claim, when all they plan to do is sell it on international markets?
 
2012-11-04 11:16:17 AM

X-boxershorts: Now we know that was a lie. Gas storage facilities are full. Wells are flaring across the state, burning off methane and waste, and overseas sale is their next move.

Tell me again why we had to rush this in and develop it willy nilly under a national energy security claim, when all they plan to do is sell it on international markets?


Because Socialism (and being "job-friendly")
 
2012-11-04 11:20:03 AM

liam76: Fracking can be done safely, but it won't be in the us.


Pretty much, this.
 
2012-11-04 11:20:36 AM

Mrtraveler01: X-boxershorts: Now we know that was a lie. Gas storage facilities are full. Wells are flaring across the state, burning off methane and waste, and overseas sale is their next move.

Tell me again why we had to rush this in and develop it willy nilly under a national energy security claim, when all they plan to do is sell it on international markets?

Because Socialism (and being "job-friendly")


Here in PA, the only jobs you can get are the menial ones, Well Tender, truck driver. The pay is nominal and the hours suck.
But if you have a business, say, a restaurant or a general store or a small motel/trailer park, you made some money off this.

The president's 2 jobs bills that congress refused to hear were more job friendly than this crap.
 
2012-11-04 11:22:34 AM
I wouldn't care if this were Texas or Alabama, but there are reasonably intelligent people living in Pennsylvania. This is really unfortunate. Repeated exposure to benzene causes pancytopenia and can result in leukemia. Arsenic is linked to cancer of the bladder, lungs, skin, kidney, nasal passages, liver, and prostate.
 
2012-11-04 11:23:09 AM

Giltric: Smackledorfer: Giltric: libby mcenviroweenie

Ya, no bias from you.

I'll give you a hint about why big energy is allowed to get away with what they get away with. It is one part being able to take nationwide money and toss it in a laser focus at any level of the government working to regulate them, and its a second part people who say and believe stupid bullshiat like that phrase there.

So ya, there is no conspiracy. There is just a nation that is partially corrupt, plenty greedy, and has just enough idiots that seem to enjoy the wool being pulled over their eyes.

And this is coming from someone who isn't convinced fracking is all that bad (all energy sources have significant downsides, and those from fracking may well be better than those from coal - something natural gas could take over for in many ways).

Giltric: Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?

Oh look, a disingenuous deflection. What a surprise.

So it is different...... Thanks

Bsabsvd


Thats all youve got then. sad.
 
2012-11-04 11:34:34 AM
I know I'm going to catch hell for this but I am an EH&S professional for a large Nat Gas operator in the Marcellus (they also operate across the company)

The PADEP requires all home/water wells be tested at the cost of the company with 2000 ft of the vertical well bore before any drill bit touches the earth.

Some companies test further out to be safe.

The aquifers and mercellus zones are separated by THOUSANDS o feet of rock.

PA was the birthplace of the oil industry in the United States and has had continuous, albeit small, oil and gas presence ever since. There are shallow gas zones (some as Low as 500 feet) all over the state. Shallow gas pockets will find the path of least resistance to the surface. Also, what do you think makes coal burn? Methane evolves off of coal seams and can leach into the ground/water with no human interaction.

The geological makeup of PA is unique. To get an idea of how complex the fracture structure is take a pane of glass, spider web it and repeat that several hundred million times on top of each other.

Speaking to landowners a majority of whom have no interest or leases you find out the history of the areas and routinely hear that they could see methane vents in springs and they're water wells well before the industry as a whole showed up.

Someone asked who would pay for the carbon filtration systems, that would be the leasing company. In PA if there is a registered complaint and the DEP finds methane where it shouldn't be the leasing gas company is legally required to do whatever the DEP states, at a cost to the company, and provide drinking water (bottled or filtration system) at their cost until the water returns to normal. At which point the homeowner gets to keep the system for piece of mind.

And for an article stating the DEP has no authority or is in the industry's back pocket, I'd like to disagree given how much they talk to us and can shut down jobs if their not completely satisfied with (which I am perfectly fine with, I've personally kicked off contractors for failing to heed my companies requirements for environmental protection).

As for the makeup of frac fluids: most major players in the Marcellus use fracfocus.org to disclose fluid compositions to the public. Additionally, fluid compositions are disclosed to regulating bodies.

Lastly, you want this low gas price environment and high regulation to continue. This pushes out the mom and pop shops (who are more apt to cut corners and can't afford to meet the basic requirements of environmental protection) and leaves the companies well versed in this environment to develop the needed infrastructure and best practices to do this safely and effectively.

/dons flame retardant suit
//here we go.
 
2012-11-04 11:41:15 AM

Urbn: I meant that as right wingers and free marketers will probably make this argument, not as we should actually trust businesses to do the right thing.

/need more coffee


I meant that too.
 
2012-11-04 11:43:10 AM
Glad to hear things are going so well with the fracking there! Down here in NC ol' Bev Perdue, our governor, recently went on a trip to find out more about fracking. She came back claiming it to be the best thing since sliced bread, and then our state government rushed through legislation allowing fracking here. They claimed it had to be done RIGHT MEOW! and that "We're running out of time!".

Nobody's exactly sure why it had to be done right now or how we're running out of time. My best guess is those in various positions in state government might not be there in a few years to receive those awesome kickbacks for pushing this through. The whole time Perdue was being wined and dined out of state, the News & Observer was running scary stories about all the bad things that could be related to fracking.

Confirmation bias be damned, everybody around here either doesn't want it at all, or those who would be okay with it at least want to wait and come up with some strong regulations and oversight. But no, we have to pass this right now (which it did), and we'll add in the regulations later when more information is available.

Yay! North Carolina state government. The finest representation money can buy.
 
2012-11-04 11:52:19 AM
OK, Dougie, the only thing I have to ask: Will you drink a glass of water from the tap of a well within the 2000ft mark of one of your operations? How about your kids? Wife? Other loved ones? I am guessing, if you can do this in a reliable or provable way, the questions would probably come down quite a bit.
 
2012-11-04 11:58:16 AM

Dougie AXP: I know I'm going to catch hell for this but I am an EH&S professional for a large Nat Gas operator in the Marcellus (they also operate across the company)

The PADEP requires all home/water wells be tested at the cost of the company with 2000 ft of the vertical well bore before any drill bit touches the earth.

Some companies test further out to be safe.

The aquifers and mercellus zones are separated by THOUSANDS o feet of rock.

PA was the birthplace of the oil industry in the United States and has had continuous, albeit small, oil and gas presence ever since. There are shallow gas zones (some as Low as 500 feet) all over the state. Shallow gas pockets will find the path of least resistance to the surface. Also, what do you think makes coal burn? Methane evolves off of coal seams and can leach into the ground/water with no human interaction.

The geological makeup of PA is unique. To get an idea of how complex the fracture structure is take a pane of glass, spider web it and repeat that several hundred million times on top of each other.

Speaking to landowners a majority of whom have no interest or leases you find out the history of the areas and routinely hear that they could see methane vents in springs and they're water wells well before the industry as a whole showed up.

Someone asked who would pay for the carbon filtration systems, that would be the leasing company. In PA if there is a registered complaint and the DEP finds methane where it shouldn't be the leasing gas company is legally required to do whatever the DEP states, at a cost to the company, and provide drinking water (bottled or filtration system) at their cost until the water returns to normal. At which point the homeowner gets to keep the system for piece of mind.

And for an article stating the DEP has no authority or is in the industry's back pocket, I'd like to disagree given how much they talk to us and can shut down jobs if their not completely satisfied with (which I am perfectly fine with, I've personally kicked off contractors for failing to heed my companies requirements for environmental protection).

As for the makeup of frac fluids: most major players in the Marcellus use fracfocus.org to disclose fluid compositions to the public. Additionally, fluid compositions are disclosed to regulating bodies.

Lastly, you want this low gas price environment and high regulation to continue. This pushes out the mom and pop shops (who are more apt to cut corners and can't afford to meet the basic requirements of environmental protection) and leaves the companies well versed in this environment to develop the needed infrastructure and best practices to do this safely and effectively.

/dons flame retardant suit
//here we go.



That hole in the planet will be there for the life of the planet. What's the long term maintenance plan?

Also, this...PA has between 180,000 and 350,000 orphaned and abandoned wells of all ages and all types.
Each orphaned and abandoned well a potential conduit between the frack zone and the surface.

How many more houses need to blow up when new development creates additional methane migration?
www.cardcreek.com
This one is in McKean County, just outside Bradford, PA.

You say PA is well regulated and on paper you are right. But PA has layed off over half their DEP field staff.
Regulations are worthless without staff to enforce them. Basically, you're expected to self regulate by filling out forms, reports and documentation and submitting them.
Every once in a while you get a visit and a check mark on the appearance of the well pad. But this is smoke and mirrors...

State Game lands 59, Fisk Hollow, PA. On a single well pad, truckers we are friendly with reported a major leak. Nothing in the news.
We went up to investigate and there was a huge wet spot on the well pad and a bunch of straw all over..and a T-shirt or a towel wrapped around the well at the surface.

Reported this to the DEP, they went up and investigated, 2 weeks later....Nothing wrong, they said.

Another truck driver reported another leak. Another DEP investigation at Fisk Hollow....nothing in the news.

We had to drive to Harrisburg and in person request the DEP investigation report for FISK Hollow...and here's the summary:
3 wells were drilled on one pad.
The drilling contractor used a drilling mud compound that included the biocide ANHIB2 but was missing additional Ph balancers that would reduce the acidity of the fluids in the well bore.
Hydrochloric acid formed during drilling and it ate through the casing. on all 3 wells. Resulting in the spill of thousands of gallons of drilling mud and well cuttings.

PA DEP had no intention of releasing this information.

AND TAHT..my good man, is the most serious argument against the state of PA and how they're managing this. Negative news, even if fact based and of relevance to PA Citizen's health, is intentionally buried under near impenetrable layers of bureaucratic rock.

Also this:
Methane migrating into water wells HAS been a major issue for PA for ever. Water well construction has been very lightly regulated throughout PA's history....
So, knowing this was an issue, and knowing the Marcellus rush was coming, why then would the state encourage a major rush without taking steps to help it's private water well owners fix a known issue?

I'm not flaming you. And as a member of the industry I'm not even blaming you.

But I got no problem telling you that PA is being negligently reckless in how the state is managing this.

PA's been drilled more times than a 5 dollar crack whore....and yeah, all kinds of nasty things are leaking out now.
 
2012-11-04 12:06:23 PM
Here's a photo of a DEP regulated waste hauler dumping his load in a creek in PA that feeds directly into the Allegheny River:

www.cardcreek.com


he's not pumping...he's dumping:

www.cardcreek.com

This too, was reported to the DEP....

(crickets)
 
2012-11-04 12:13:07 PM

MurphyMurphy: starsrift: MurphyMurphy: ...One situation where an impartial state government would be nice. But the industry saw to it we wouldn't have that.

The first sentence of TFA notes this is a private well. While giving shale fracking permits, contaminated groundwater and such is the purview of the state, the cleanliness of the well's water and monitoring of it also bears private responsibility as well.

Without trying to sound Republican... government isn't the only answer here.

Nothing partisan about expecting responsibility from all parties.

I think there is room for responsibility to be shared. I think it should be the land owners responsibility to have the tests done before/during/after ...also in my little ideal world, the government would insist and verify that it happened to a more than satisfactory level of quality and impartiality.

Sounds easy... but we sure screwed it up here.


Why should the property owner have any responsibility? Why should a private property owner have to take on the cost of testing because big oil wants to make millions by fraking near his land?

It should be a cost of the fraking business period. You want a permit to frak you need to do a proper environmental impact study that includes testing all wells in the area prior to fraking. Don't wanna do that tough shiat. You want to make millions fraking its your farking responsibility to ensure you do not harm nearby property owners that are getting nothing from the fraking operation.
 
2012-11-04 12:15:49 PM

Giltric: So how does the govenor (one person) get everyone who didnt recieve all that money from the oil and gas industry to look the other way?


WHO IS LOOKING THE OTHER WAY?

This isn't a freaking conspiracy no matter how many times you try to construct that strawman. The PA republicans, currently in control, are transparently pro-industry and they pass sweetheart deals for the oil and gas industries while taking huge donations from them. None of this is some giant shadowy secret. It's all out in the open and obvious. Apparently PA voters just don't seem to give a shiat about it.

Giltric: Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?


Where in TFA does any of that appear? Is that what we're talking about, or are we talking about fracking in PA?

Knock it off with the farking strawmen you dishonest prick.
 
2012-11-04 12:19:20 PM

Vegan Meat Popsicle: Giltric: So how does the govenor (one person) get everyone who didnt recieve all that money from the oil and gas industry to look the other way?

WHO IS LOOKING THE OTHER WAY?

This isn't a freaking conspiracy no matter how many times you try to construct that strawman. The PA republicans, currently in control, are transparently pro-industry and they pass sweetheart deals for the oil and gas industries while taking huge donations from them. None of this is some giant shadowy secret. It's all out in the open and obvious. Apparently PA voters just don't seem to give a shiat about it.

Giltric: Has obama not reformed wall street due to all that wall street campaign funding.... Or is that different?

Where in TFA does any of that appear? Is that what we're talking about, or are we talking about fracking in PA?

Knock it off with the farking strawmen you dishonest prick.


A foreign owned company, Royal Dutch Shell, just got a 1.2 BILLION dollar tax break to build a gas cracking facility north of Pittsburgh.
 
2012-11-04 12:21:35 PM

SilentStrider: welp. looks like bottled water time.


How bad does it have to get before it's "up against the wall" time?

/Just curious
 
2012-11-04 01:07:07 PM

Took me a minute to find this again, but this is a paper about groundwater--conveniently, I found the one for Pennsylvania. The Geology of Pennsylvania's Groundwater

It doesn't address fracking, since it was written in 1999. So I expect it's pretty unbiased about how it talks about the geology and state of the groundwater in PA. Most of the fracking is done in areas categorized as having "sandstone, shale, or coal" sediments. Well, duh, since it's called shale fracking. The report is full of charts and graphs and stuff and pretty easy reading, if you'd like to wade through it and find out about groundwater, particularly in PA.

Poor water quality is not always the result of degradation from human
activities. Depending on what minerals are dissolved from the rocks and
sediments, natural groundwater quality may be unacceptable in some
areas. Probably the most common problem is hardness, which results
from high concentrations of calcium. High amounts of dissolved solids,
iron, and hydrogen sulfide (which has a rotten-egg odor) are examples
of other water-quality problems that occur naturally.

The quantity of dissolved solids in groundwater is lowest in northcentral
Pennsylvania. Because of the rugged landscape, little groundwater
penetrates to deep levels in that area, resulting in a short residence time.
The main rock types are sandstone and shale, which are made of rela-
tively insoluble minerals. Other areas of Pennsylvania have more rock that
is soluble and/or more of the groundwater penetrates to deeper levels,
increasing residence time.

Activities of humans can cause changes to the chemistry
of groundwater in a variety of ways. .... Nitrates and
bacteria from sewage, as well as household chemicals that are dumped
into septic systems, can contaminate groundwater. This is probably more
of a problem in Pennsylvania than elsewhere in the United States because
Mineralization of Water and Water.


I don't find any mentions of naturally-occurring benzene or arsenic in PA groundwater, but they do mention iron, nitrates, salt water, and acid mine drainage--which can have arsenic in it. We have arsenic in some of our groundwater around here, but it is usually related to old mining.

Does groundwater flow
through all rocks?


Groundwater flows through almost all
rocks and sediments below the water table.
Because some are less permeable than others,
water flows through different rocks and sediments
at different speeds.


I imagine it flows a little faster through "almost all rocks" after you put some explosive charges under the ground, blow up those rocks, and then put a bunch of chemicals into the ground that are specifically designed to make those rocks more permeable. And this is not even counting the "flowback fluid"--the water that is kept in waste ponds on the surface and treated to make it "safe" again. From another source:

Though this is modified during and after well stimulation by chemical interactions among the constituents of the fracture fluid itself and among the fracture fluid and the chemicals present in the target formation, flowback fluid will contain many of the same compounds found in the fracture fluid that was pumped down the well. These include acid, gels, cross-linkers, breakers, friction reducers, surfactants, corrosion inhibitors, boosters, biocides, clay stabilizers, and pH adjusters.

Formation Water (the fracking fluid) contains

Heavy Metals
(Like lead, arsenic, and chromium)
Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials
(Like radium, uranium, and strontium)
Volatile Organic Compounds
(Like benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene)
 
Oh well, I'll keep reading some more. It all sounds perfectly *choke, gag, retch* safe.
 
2012-11-04 01:27:19 PM

X-boxershorts: A foreign owned company, Royal Dutch Shell, just got a 1.2 BILLION dollar tax break to build a gas cracking facility north of Pittsburgh.


Yup. And, again, PA residents don't seem to mind.

I lived in PA in 2010. All of this was obvious back then. Nobody really cared. Apparently, voters in PA have little or no problem with a governor and legislators who take a ton of donations from special interests and then hand out sweetheart deals to the same groups giving them donations while demanding almost nothing in return for the benefit of the state's citizens for the privilege of exploiting the states natural resources.

None of it appears to be illegal, just a matter to be left up to voters. And they decided it was fine because they elected a rabidly anti-education, pro-business governor who is doing in his term exactly what he promised he'd do when he ran.

So, whatever. Representative government doesn't mean good government. Especially not if the people being represented are complete fools with no sense of self-interest. 

The people of Pennsylvania are getting exactly what they asked for what they deserve. The only really aggravating thing is that once the gas is gone or too costly to extract or, as is already starting to happen, gas just becomes too cheap to be very profitable, these same fools who supported this bullshiat agenda in the first place will cry and scream to the federal government for help as the jobs dry up and they're left back in poverty with nothing to show for the ecological damage and strain on the infrastructure. Damaged roads, no jobs and generations of kids with weird cancers and they'll blame everyone but themselves just like Texans did after their boom and bust cycle.
 
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