Digital News Report – The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced two more locations, Las Animas County, Colorado, and Dunn and Kildeer Counties, North Dakota, for their case study on the impacts of hydraulic fracturing effects on drinking water. There are now seven locations the EPA will investigate to determine if drinking water is being contaminated from hydraulic fracturing.
In the ‘Gasland’ documentary, the grassroots style film shows of people suffering from water contamination that live nearby hydraulic fracturing sites. In six states, the documentary said, there was over 1,000 ground water contamination cases reported. In the documentary, some of the people’s contaminated water would catch on fire, while others would report illnesses in humans and in animals. The animals would lose their hair, while the humans often had nervous system problems.
The EPA hydraulic fracturing study was mandated by Congress. Hydraulic fracturing forces water along with specially added chemicals deep in the Earth’s crust to cause the rocks below to break apart. By cracking or “fracturing” the bedrock, it becomes easier to gain access to oil and natural gas stores.
Two of the seven sites were selected as prospective case studies. These locations are: Haynesville Shale – DeSoto Parish, Louisiana; and Marcellus Shale – Washington County, Pennsylvania. At these locations, the EPA will examine the main phases of the hydraulic fracturing process throughout the lifecycle of a well.
The other five of the seven locations will have the EPA investigate where hydraulic fracturing has already occurred to determine what kinds contamination may have happened to drinking water in nearby areas. These locations are: Bakken Shale – Kildeer, and Dunn Counties, North Dakota; Barnett Shale – Wise and Denton Counties, Texas; Marcellus Shale – Bradford and Susquehanna Counties, Pennsylvania; Marcellus Shale – Washington County, Pennsylvania; and Raton Basin – Las Animas County, Colorado.
For more information about EPA’s study on hydraulic fracturing visit http://www.epa.gov/hydraulicfracturing.
By: Victoria Brown
Gasland Documentary 2010 Trailer on YouTube