Man Documents Changes In His Drinking Water As Fracking Begins

Vera Scroggins, accompanied by The Environment TV, interviewed Ray, who has documented the changes in his well water since the gas industry began drilling in his hometown of Dimock, PA.

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On May 12, 2013, Vera Scroggins, accompanied by The Environment TV, interviewed Ray, who has documented the changes in his well water since the gas industry began drilling in his hometown of Dimock, PA. This is the Frack zone, this is frack country.

Imagine having your drinking water tested and discover that you've got weapons grade uranium in your well, among other things.

ProPublica reported on the drinking water in Dimock in 2012:

"The water in Dimock first became the focus of international attention after residents there alleged in 2009 that natural gas drilling, and fracking, had led to widespread contamination. That April, ProPublica reported that a woman’s drinking water well blew up. Pennsylvania officials eventually determined that underground methane gas leaks had been caused by Cabot Oil and Gas, which was drilling wells nearby. Pennsylvania sanctioned Cabot, and for a short time the company provided drinking water to households in the Dimock area."
...

"As the agency has elsewhere, the EPA began the testing in Dimock in search of methane and found it.

Methane is not considered poisonous to drink, and therefore is not a health threat in the same way as other pollutants. But the gas can collect in confined spaces and cause deadly explosions, or smother people if they breathe too much of it. Four of the five residential water results obtained by ProPublica show methane levels exceeding Pennsylvania standards; one as high as seven times the threshold and nearly twice the EPA’s less stringent standard.

The methane detections were accompanied by ethane, another type of natural gas that experts say often signifies the methane came from deeply buried gas deposits similar to those being drilled for energy and not from natural sources near the surface.

Among the other substances detected at low levels in Dimock’s water are a suite of chemicals known to come from some sort of hydrocarbon substance, such as diesel fuel or roofing tar. They include anthracene, fluoranthene, pyrene and benzo(a)pyrene– all substances described by a branch of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as cancer-causing even in very small amounts. Chromium, aluminum, lead and other metals were also detected, as were chlorides, salts, bromide and strontium, minerals that can occur naturally but are often associated with natural gas drilling."

About Diane Sweet

Diane Sweet's picture
Senior Editor, Lives in a gerrymandered district in Michigan.

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