This is an important finding.   Although we do not understand the process by which waste water buried deep within the ground migrates into aquifers,  evidence suggests that it happens.  Read here.

Views: 2415

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Robin-- I hear you about Fox and other environmental advocates. Some may be sincere and others not, but their passion has never been in doubt. I've been concerned for some time that Marcellus shale development could fall victim to shifting legal standards that place greater emphasis on a precautionary principle in law. This principle has already been widely adopted in the European Union. According to the Wingspread Statement:
"When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically."
In other words, even if there is no scientific proof that an activity is damaging, restrictions can proactively be placed on it. Most damning of all, it shifts the legal burden of proof to whomsoever proposes an activity to establish that it is very unlikely to cause harm. In other words, all that is required to invoke a precautionary principle is a widespread perception that drilling and hydro-fracturing are harmful to health and the environment; there is no need for scientific proof.

Therefore, environmental advocates such as Fox, as extreme and unfounded as they may be in their beliefs, should be taken quite seriously, even if the purpose is merely to knock down the falacies they sometimes are accused of spreading.

Remember that cigarette-smoking was once marketed as "good for the health" and many believed that, so perceptions don't have to match scientific reality. All they need to do is take up residence in the consciousness of a significant percentage of the population. --Tom
'There are no disposal wells to take contaminated waste water in NY or Pa.

Closest are in Ohio at 20 cents a gallon

There are no wastewater treatment plants in NYS. About a dozen in Pa.

Without a plan for final disposition of the contaminated flowback, no permit should be issued.

Since re-cycling simply increases the level of radioactive contamination with each pass.

It's not a solution, it just delays having to deal with what's left.
My two cents- I think the most critical component is the management of surface and near surface spills and the construction and properly sealing of the upper strings (s). Yes strings - we should not be using single strings but multiple strings that are properly cemented.

The key is to re-create the confining layers that we violate when we drill and limit mixing between formations. Other major problem in PA is the lack of private well construction standards and the fact that homeowners mostly know nothing about their well.

Brian, PG
WIlkes University
Brian-- Great to hear from Wilkes--it used to be called College when I taught there one year back in the 1970s. You sound like you know your drilling stuff. Does Wilkes have any special programs focusing on the gas industry? --Tom
No special degree program - just training quality environmental engineers, geologists, and earth scientists. My new website at Wilkes is
I do offer some training courses on alternative energy and natural gas / petrochemical engineering through a separate portal.
You seem to have hit the nail on the head.
Dimock was caused by improper cementing according to reports.
And so far most of the people who are complaining know nothing about their water before drilling started.
Dear Shalers,
My apologies for not being computer literate enough to get the pictures to appear here.

Dear Shalers,
• With special thanks to Angel, below you’ll find a good reporting site ( ) should you become aware of a site contamination. This contamination was spotted in Shaffer creek in clearville, Pa.
• IMGA0265.JPG
• IMGA0266.JPG
• IMGA0270.JPG
• IMGA0263.JP
• IMGA0439.JPG
• IMGA0444.JPG
• IMGA0445.JP

When you see this stuff , you can call your regions e.p.a. but the best thing that you can do is to fill out a reporting form on the web.

If you prefer to use a phone, then report any problems by calling 1-800-424-8802 You can send any pictures you take to senators and elected officials.

Bottom line folks-we need to help the Oil/Gas folks to be good neighbors. We need to be vigilant, and to hold them to good practices and proper working responsibilities. They are not evil, just business folks willing to cut corners if permitted.

Dear Shalers,
With special thanks to Angel, here's the kind of thing that happened to Joe A. & Sandra K. McDaniel which we all need to be aware of and to seek to avoid:

Docket CP08-15

Property Owners Complaint
Joe A & Sandra K McDaniel
2727 Jay Road
Clearville, PA 15535

Monday, November 16, 2009


Naturally gas drilling activities using drilling chemicals other than air, mud and water, polluted our water! See the prewater tests and post water tests. See changes which occurred after drilling commenced?
Other lab tests also confirm chemistry changes took place with visible suds known as MBAS. The pond also has an algae bloom from fracking chemicals which are exempt from water testing.

FERC should not approve any future natural gas storage wells closer than 1,000 feet on ridge tops above ponds and other water supplies.
Toxic drilling chemicals which can be hazardous to humans, wildlife and aquatic life should be included in all pre and post water testing.
Chemical brews, trade secrets of Halliburton and Schlumberger, should be tested for in pre or post water tests.

For the public record at FERC Elibrary, as a result of this gas storage project which FERC approved for Steckman Ridge LP; our spring fed fish pond is polluted from natural gas drilling chemicals and activities performed at those two gas storage wells located on the two ridge tops! We are certain pollution is not naturally occurring as was stated by many times by Steckman Ridge landsman, Kevin McCrary.

We requested FERC not to place gas storage wells on both ridge tops less than 1,000 away from our spring fed fish pond. FERC told us our pond would be safe because this company would use air, mud and water to drill the wells and this is environmentally friendly but the man made chemicals were not factored for the location. We know casings around wellbores have been known to fail in the past and likely failed at this site since pre and post water tests show chemicals escaped and found their way into the spring fed fish pond which was protected by silt fencing and other erosion controls. There was no other path than subsurface entry for man made surfactants!

Click here for our website to see some pictures of chemicals:
See a few of the bags, gallon jugs and drums of chemicals along with five frac tanks were located at the drilling sites. Trailer loads of chemicals were trucked in for Halliburton. The water boy was on site with tankers of water daily. Residual wastes were trucked off. The water boy "Dively's Trucking" also helped load or unload frac tanks and proved to be very handy loading the tanker with water, fluids and pit water.
(More videos in upcoming posts will show coiled tubing operations with the liquid nitrogen bulk tanker units and other operations consisting of high pressure techniques).

Steckman Ridge did a prewater test on water quality prior to natural gas drilling. There were zero man made surfactants and pollution in the water. The pond was healthy, had a good water level and had no algae or chemicals in the muds.

Steckman Ridge did a postwater test which showed there is man made suds or a surfactant known as MBAS in our spring fed fish pond. Steckman Ridge did not test our water for the other chemicals used in drilling fluids but we know the other chemicals they used are linked to the algae growth in our pond. Those drilling fluids are harmful to aquatic life with long term chronic disease affects which could show up next summer as the water warms or the water table rises again if ever. The low depth of the water is a perfect breeding area for algae blended with chemicals in the muds.

Suds were seen and reported to Kevin McCrary, landsman April 2009, May, 2009, June 2009 and July 2009. Kevin McCrary assured us they were naturally occurring in the county. Steckman's post water report in August 2009 proved the suds are not naturally occurring. We were misinformed. We have studied and now worry about the effects MBAS detergent will have on the fish as it is known to remove the protective layer from the fish then they will eventually become diseased and die. We want the algae gone in the pond forever, it will come back year after year now that it is in the pond; we want the muds in the bottom of the pond cleaned as perfect as they were prior to natural gas drilling, this would mean draining the pond and losing everything but everything is already polluted; we don't want to lose our fish but now we would be afraid to let anyone eat them since they have been exposed to chemicals not tested for lurking in the muds; if a new pond were built and restocked we yet face the factor of those subsurface chemicals which yet will work their way out into the spring which fed the pond. The pond has been polluted by natural gas drilling activities and chemicals, there is no solution for this catrastrophe.

Kevin McCrary knew in April 2009 that white foam was seen outside the waste pit at the drilling site so did PADep but they weren't there to catch them in the act but the video got it.
Kevin McCrary was informed in May 2009 about foam outside the pit and again we were assured it would be o.k. that the foam is harmless but he left the factor out about the effect of soap on fish and the other chemicals which accompanied the surfactant into the pond via subsurface release.
Kevin McCrary had acted to show he was doing his part which would take care of the foam. Mr. McCrary had a silt fence put up along the pond to stop any runoff from the pad so the foam couldn't get into the pond or streams outside the pond.
McCrary made us believe he had taken appropriate action but we kept seeing suds and he kept saying they were naturally occurring, now we know what we saw is harmful to aquatic life.
The suds are a man made chemical surfactant known as MBAS. After studies of these chemicals we saw being used, we now know the algae bloom which appeared after drilling commenced are linked to the drilling chemicals.
We now know those chemicals did not roll off of the pad into the pond because there was a silt fence and sandbags along with other erosion control devices next to the pond and this leaves nothing left except subsurface pollution which surfaced into the spring fed fish pond. Something went wrong around the wellbore casing.

FERC can ask this company if they used a frac tank for diesel; or light, medium, heavy brines; or bara defoam 300 (kerosene); aldecide; ucaracide; aqua gel; clay seal plus; duo squeeze; bara carb 150; denise soda ash, dextrid LD, baro seal; diamond seal polymer for lost circulation; EZmud; corrosive inhibiters; methanol; formaldehyde, Glutaraldehyde, etc...etc... in drilling fluid brews with common proppants...etc.
Ask if Halliburton came into the well sites after the fluids were injected and used coiled tubing and liquid nitrogen tankers to finish off the wells. We only care about the pond which they destroyed.

If FERC has a biologist in the agency, they will know aquatic toxicity levels for chemicals mentioned herein to see what they do to aquatic life which are known as chronic showing up as time goes by!
Check for any water tests for the chemicals used in the drilling process which went in the wrong place via subsurface transport, there are none but they were used and got into the pond.

Ask Steckman Ridge if the second pit turned black and ask them why it turned black?
Tell them it is o.k. to answer these questions, they are safe and protected, we only care about the pond which they polluted which was the central heart of all activities on our property.

The last time we read the law, Spectra Energy along with other drilling companies are totally exempt from water tests for fracking chemicals and hydraulic fracturing!

Paragraph (1) of section 1421(d) of the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300h(d)) is amended to read as follows:
‘‘(1) UNDERGROUND INJECTION.—The term ‘underground injection’—
‘‘(A) means the subsurface emplacement of fluids by well injection; and
‘‘(B) excludes—
‘‘(i) the underground injection of natural gas for purposes of storage; and
‘‘(ii) the underground injection of fluids or propping agents (other than diesel fuels) pursuant to hydraulic fracturing operations related to oil, gas, or geothermal production activities.’’.

Section 502 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1362) is amended by adding at the end the following:
‘‘(24) OIL AND GAS EXPLORATION AND PRODUCTION.—The term ‘oil and gas exploration, production, processing, or treatment operations or transmission facilities’ means all field activities or operations associated with exploration, production, processing, or treatment operations, or transmission facilities, including activities necessary to prepare a site for drilling and for the movement and placement of drilling equipment, whether or not such field activities or operations may be considered to be construction activities.’’.

Others are exempt and reap profits while the environment will never recover from the damages.
Landowners are not exempt from humiliation and stressful pollution factors which affect human health and enjoyment of life.

We wish FERC could put our pond water back to the way it was before natural gas drilling took place.
We wish FERC could ensure us we will not experience terror and fears in the future, from toxic chemicals trapped in the subsurface formation, which may creep into and onto our property?

We remain fearful of chemicals used in the drilling fluids, injected into the subsurface which lurk in the subsurface and may work their way out. We will never again enjoy the polluted property which was once pure and a clean sanctuary of peace and tranquility.

We have learned not to ask Steckman Ridge for a solution: "Kevin McCrary, landsman may tell us again it is "Naturally Occurring."

"Others now enjoy what they have destroyed on earth".

Joe A. & Sandra K. McDaniel
Is Hydraulic Fracturing Safe?
In 2004, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency completed a study of the environmental risks associated with the hydraulic fracturing of coal bed methane wells. The EPA concluded that the injection of hydraulic fracturing fluids poses little or no threat to underground sources of drinking water.
Although thousands of wells are fractured annually, the EPA did not find a single incident of the contamination of drinking water wells by hydraulic fracturing fluid injection. Additionally, states where fracing and drilling occur have all stated that there have been no cases where hydraulic fracturing has been verified to have contaminated drinking water.
The EPA's track record between 2000 and 2008 was pretty anemic. Government and industry were practically indistinguishable during those years.


© 2021   Created by Keith Mauck (Site Publisher).   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service