ShareThis Page

Fracking fluid dangerous

| Monday, April 22, 2013, 5:27 p.m.

Re. the article “Township expects $332K influx from gas lease,” (April 12) about drilling in Clinton: The article fails to fully disclose the environmental health hazards associated with hydrofracturing, even though those hazards were clearly and thoroughly presented to your reporter during her 25-minute phone interview with me.

Harvesting natural gas causes significant water and air pollution known to be poisonous to people and animals:

• Toxic fracking fluid commonly contaminates groundwater through defects in well casings, wastewater spills and illegal dumping into waterways and abandoned mines.

• Pressure-relief valves on gas condensate tanks and dehydrators at the well site and compressor stations release natural gas, volatile organic compounds and hydrogen sulfide directly into the atmosphere. These releases are exempt from federal and state air quality regulations, but are extremely toxic and explosive. Also, the flaring process releases these compounds and a host of other by-products.

Your reporter cherry-picked the one concern I had about the nondisclosure of the fracking-fluid chemicals going down the wellbore and juxtaposed it to an assertion from the CEO of PennEnergy, who said what is going on 6,500 feet below ground couldn't possibly have any impact on the surface. He failed to say 20 to 30 percent of what goes down also comes up, laden with elements and compounds from the Marcellus shale itself — toxic heavy metals, radioactivity and volatile organic compounds.

What is in the fracking fluid to start with contributes to the toxicity of this flowback.

Sam Edwards

Clinton Township

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.