Monday, September 21, 2009

Frack Fluid Spill in Dimock Contaminates Stream, Killing Fish

by Abrahm Lustgarten, ProPublica - September 21, 2009 4:09 pm EDT

Pennsylvania environment officials are racing to clean up as much as 8,000 gallons of dangerous drilling fluids after a series of spills at a natural gas production site near the town of Dimock late last week.

The spills, which occurred at a well site run by Cabot Oil and Gas, involve a compound manufactured by Halliburton that is described as a "potential carcinogen" and is used in the drilling process of hydraulic fracturing, according to state officials. The contaminants have seeped into a nearby creek, where a fish kill was reported by the state Department of Environmental Protection. The DEP also reported fish "swimming erratically".

...

Neither Cabot Oil and Gas nor Halliburton immediately returned calls for comment on Monday. A Halliburton spokesperson sent an email referring any questions to information on the company’s website.

DEP officials were also unavailable for interviews, but said through e-mail that faulty piping is suspected and that they have not confirmed the exact cause of the spill. A press spokesperson said to expect an announcement and actions towards Cabot by Tuesday.

ProPublica interviewed state officials several months ago about drilling problems in Dimock [1]. "Cabot has definitely had their share of problems out there," Craig Lobins, a regional oil and gas division director, said then. "Some of them is just being a little bit careless… or sloppy, or maybe a little bit of bad luck too."

The drilling fluid spill Wednesday may be the most serious yet, because it involves chemicals that are known to pose a risk to human health and has spread into the area’s surface water system.

According to a Material Safety Data Sheet provided to the state this week by Halliburton, the spilled drilling fluid contained a liquid gel concentrate consisting of a Paraffinic solvent and Polysaccharide, chemicals listed as possible carcinogens for people. The MSDS form – for Halliburton’s proprietary product called LGC-35 CBM – does not list the entire makeup of the gel or the quantity of its constituents, but it warns that the substances have led to skin cancer in animals and "may cause headache, dizziness and other central nervous system effects" to anyone who breathes or swallows the fluids.

...

It is not yet clear exactly what led to or caused the spill. State officials report that at least 1,000 gallons of fluid were spilled Wednesday afternoon, and another 5,900 gallons about 10 that night. The substance was reportedly a clay-like mixture, with the Halliburton gel mixed at about five gallons per 1,000 gallons of water. A DEP spokesperson said in an e-mail that the spills appear to be the result of supply pipe failures. In one case a pressurized line may have broken, and in another a seal may have given way. State officials said the fluids had spilled into Stevens Creek.

The contamination incident comes as the state faces increasing scrutiny for its handling of a natural gas drilling boom and dozens of instances of spills and water contamination related to it across the state. Earlier investigations by ProPublica found that methane had leaked into drinking water supplies from gas wells in at least seven Pennsylvania counties. And earlier this month the DEP began investigating a suspected chemical spill in the northwestern part of the state, hundreds of miles from Dimock, which decimated aquatic life along a 30-mile stretch of pristine river. (see below) No determination has been made in that case either, but waste fluids from drilling are among the possibilities being investigated.

For the complete report from ProPublica, CLICK HERE.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sudden death of ecosystem ravages long creek
'Everything is being killed': 161 aquatic species have died along Dunkard Creek
Sunday, September 20, 2009

DEMAND ACCOUNTABILITY!

9 comments:

  1. I love it when people get together and share ideas.

    Great sіte, sticκ wіth it!

    Feel free to suгf to mу webѕite ..
    . www.escueladeescritores.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm really loving the theme/design of your web site. Do you ever run into any web browser compatibility problems? A number of my blog readers have complained about my blog not operating correctly in Explorer but looks great in Opera. Do you have any ideas to help fix this issue?

    My blog post - cordoba

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hello, all the time i used to check website posts here in the early hours
    in the morning, since i like to find out
    more and more.

    my page: www.tedxyse.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. wonderful issues altogether, you just gained a logo new reader.
    What could you recommend about your publish that you simply
    made some days ago? Any positive?

    Look at my blog post Louis Vuitton Bags

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hello, after reading this remarkable article
    i am too delighted to share my familiarity here with friends.


    Review my weblog Abercrombie Et Fitch

    ReplyDelete
  6. Web Site - You have a highly professional image.
    Software, for many years, student loans people in
    aplicatii, Editura Econsulting, Galati, 2000, 178
    pag. Be Prepared to Face the RejectionsEveryone has different interests
    and it's not getting people to do things that we get criticized for was being late.

    my web site; Student Loans for People with Bad Credit

    ReplyDelete
  7. At this time I am going to do my breakfast, after having my breakfast coming yet again to read other
    news.

    my homepage; additional info

    ReplyDelete
  8. Appreciate the recommendation. Let me try it out.


    Take a look at my webpage :: Christian Louboutin

    ReplyDelete
  9. Nice post. I was checking constantly this blog and I'm impressed! Very helpful info specially the last part :) I care for such information much. I was seeking this certain info for a very long time. Thank you and best of luck.

    my website ... Boutique Air Jordan

    ReplyDelete

RURAL IMPACT VIDEOS, 6 parts

Natural gas development in Colorado, the impacts on communities, environment and public health. A primer for public servants and residents of counties that care for their lifestyles.

Drilling for Gas in Bradford County, PA ... Listen!

Cattle Drinking Drilling Waste!

EPA... FDA... Hello? How many different ways are we going to have to eat this? ... Thank you TXSharon for all you do! ... Stay tuned in at http://txsharon.blogspot.com

Landfarms

A film by Txsharon. Thank you Sharon for all you do. Click HERE to read the complete article on Bluedaze: Landfarms: Spreading Toxic Drilling Waste on Farmland

SkyTruth: Upper Green River Valley - A View From Above