Category Archives: Government, Academic and Industry Studies and Reports

Top Developments Beginning The Week of July 16

  • Duke study providing ammunition to both sides of the water contamination debate.  (Timesleader.com)
  • Insurer announces it will not underwrite fracking.  (Wall Stret Journal)
  • New 1,230 underground natural gas pipeline being constructed to run from Pennsylvania to the Gulf Coast.  (Dayton Daily News)
  • Tennessee to consider fracking regulations this week.  (Knoxvillebiz.com)

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EPA to Utilize “Tracing Test” To Verify No Water Pollution From Fracking

According to reports, the EPA has been permitted access to a Pennsylvania fracking site to conduct testing with tracing elements  added to fracking fluids which should should let scientists determine whether drilling fluids move upwards or sideways from 8,000 feet beneath the surface. “Conceptually, it sounds like a really great idea,” said P. Lee Ferguson, a Duke University civil and environmental engineering professor who is not involved with the project. “I have wondered about this since I started thinking about fracking. Which compounds are…

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Duke Peer Reviewed Study Only Increases Debate About Groundwater Contamination

A peer reviewed study out of Duke University concerning potential migration of Marcellus brine to aquifers in Pennsylvania will intensify the already red-hot debate over whether hydraulic fracturing can (or has) led to groundwater contamination in the Marcellus Shale.  The study examined the potential for salinated water to migrate into shalow aquifers.  The study primarily found (a) no salinated water near shale-gas wells and (b) the current salination is naturally occurring and was identified decades ago by the US Geological Survey.   At the same time,…

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Pennsylvania DEP Secretary Criticizes NRDC Fracking Report

On Monday, Michael Krancer, Secretary of Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection, responded by letter to a May 2012 Natural Resources Defense Council report entitled In Fracking’s Wake.  Krancer criticized the report and defendedPennsylvania’s record with regard to wastewater recycling.  Krancer called the report “incorrect and inapplicable toPennsylvania” and noted that NRDC’s “math seems to be off” with respect to the report’s assertion that only 30 % of wastewater from fracking operations inPennsylvaniawas recycled.   The NRDC erred in making this calculation, wrote Krancer, by failing…

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OSHA/NIOSH Issue Joint Fracking Hazard Alert

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), reacting to recent field studies and sampling of fracking wells, issued a joint Hazard Alert which outlines potential risks to fracking workers associated with respirable crystalline silica, the portion of crystalline silica that is small enough to enter the gas-exchange regions of the lungs if inhaled.  Respirable crystalline silica, the alert states, has shown an association with lung disease called silicosis.
 
The NIOSH/OSHA alert relates to fracking workers…

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