Don’t drink the fracking fluids!

Jul 16th, 2013 | By | Category: General

Millions of gallons of water laced with toxic chemicals from oil and gas drilling rigs are pumped for consumption by wildlife and livestock with formal approval from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, according to public comments filed today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). Contrary to its own regulations, EPA is issuing permits for surface application of drilling wastewater without even identifying the chemicals in hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) fluids, let alone setting effluent limits for the contaminants contained within them.

EPA has just posted proposed new water discharge permits for the nearly dozen oil fields on or abutting the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming (EPA has Clean Water Act jurisdiction on tribal lands). Besides not even listing the array of toxic chemicals being discharged, the proposed permits have monitoring requirements so weak that water can be tested long after fracking events or maintenance flushing. In addition, the permits lack any provisions to protect the health of wildlife or livestock.

“Under the less than watchful eye of EPA, fracking flowback is dumped into rivers, lakes and reservoirs,” stated PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, pointing out that in both the current and the new proposed permits EPA ignores its own rules requiring that it list “the type and quantity of wastes, fluids, or pollutants which are proposed to be or are being treated, stored, disposed of, injected, emitted, or discharged.” “Gushers of putrid, grayish water encrusted with chemical crystals flood through Wind River into nearby streams.”

For more on this story, visit: PEER – DON’T DRINK THE FRACKING FLUIDS!.

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