Environmental Defense Fund: Stop Your Sell-Out to the Gas Industry by Wenonah Hauter, August 28, 2012, Huffingtonpost.com
I have news for the Environmental Defense Fund: the fracking activist community is shocked that you received $6 million from Bloomberg Philanthropies to advocate for fracking regulations. And we aren’t going to stand for it. EDF says that they’ll be working for “responsible” regulation in 14 states. Of course, this is a just double speak that means swooping into states where there is a strong grassroots movement against fracking and shilling for the oil and gas industry. They will claim to represent environmentalists while they promote regulation that is so weak even the gas industry can live with it.
I recently attended an industry conference — the first “summit” of the oil, gas and water industry. … An official from Aquatech BV said that 2.4 trillion gallons of produced water (i.e. polluted water) are generated from oil and gas operations in the U.S. each day, and in the rest of the world, another 5.7 trillion gallons of produced water are generated each day — adding up to a total daily volume of 8.1 trillion gallons of polluted water. This is enough to cover the entire area of the United States 3 feet deep every year. The volume of produced water is increasing at a rate of 8 percent annually according to an official at GE Power.
Further, it seems like almost every week a new study comes out about the dangers of fracking. Stony Brook University published an article in the journal Risk Analysis this month that found substantial water pollution risks to rivers and other waterways from the disposal of fracking wastewater. A University of Texas seismologist tracked earthquakes in the Barnett Shale in Texas and found a correlation between the disposal of fracking wastewater in underground injection wells and small earthquake activity. The research will be published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this month. … Accidents and leaks have polluted rivers, streams and drinking water supplies. Regions peppered with drilling rigs have high levels of smog as well as other airborne pollutants, including potential carcinogens. Rural communities face an onslaught of heavy truck traffic — often laden with dangerous chemicals used in drilling — and declining property values. The “bridge fuel” of fracking could well be a bridge to nowhere. [Emphasis added]