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Upper New York watershed - a battleground with nature and human health vs the gas extraction companies[Editor's note: always looking for the implications in any story, I take the below information, which affects my local area, and I apply it globally; those who claim that oil shelf drilling, or gas extraction, or coal mountaintop removal are "friendly" processes, are in three words, full of it]

The New York City Council is demanding a BAN on gas drilling in its Watershed - and we are working very hard to prevent the same dire effects of gas drilling - in our township and in the Upper Delaware Watershed [Wayne & Pike County, PA & Sullivan County, NY] because Chesapeake has begun deployment within the Watershed Region . . . see maps.

Overwhelming evidence and much science now exists showing that the type of gas drilling proposed for this region - made possible by total federal deregulation - is a danger to the public health and causes contaminated drinking water, carcinogens in the farmland and food chain, torn-up roads, air pollution, plummeting home values, and noise pollution.

DIMOCK, PA WATER CONTAMINATION
Scranton Times, "DEP probes blast in gas-drilling region."
Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin, "DEP zeros in on gas tainting water."
Scranton Times, "Gas taints wells."
The River Reporter, "Dimock's dilemma - Methane found in water wells."

RECENT PRESS
...more important press reports
Newsweek, "Officials Worry About the Impact of Fracking."
ABC News, "Sex for Oil & Gas, Reports Blast Interior Department."
NY Daily News, "Natural Gas Rush Will Come at Expense of NYC's Water."
NBC Nightly News, "Will Gas Drilling Spoil Our Water."
New York Times, "Where Water Trumps Energy."
The Citizen Telegram, "No to Gas Well Drilling in Watershed."
BusinessWeek, "Does Natural-Gas Drilling Endanger Water Supplies?"
Scientific American, "Drill for Natural Gas, Pollute Water."
Washington Post, "Hunt for gas leads drillers to NYC watershed."
New York Times, "Proposed Gas Drilling Upstate Raises Concerns About Water Supply."
New York Times, "11th-Hour Ruling Blocks Utah Oil and Gas Leases."
Christian Science Monitor, "Boom in gas drilling fuels contamination concerns in Colorado."



Each deep gas well uses millions of gallons of water, sand, 171 products, and 245 chemicals (some secret & toxic). Halliburton's gas well drilling process, "hydraulic-fracturing", is now exempt from the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the Right-to-Know-Act, and other important protections.

The NRDC has released a comprehensive report about this issue . . . read more




GAS DRILLING IS NOT A BENIGN ACTIVITY. Besides temporary disruptions there are many possible irreversible damages to water, land, wildlife, quality of life, human health, and property values. It took only five years for Fort Worth, Texas – sitting on the same geologic strata as discussed here and dealing with the same gas companies – to be transformed from one of the most livable cities in the country into a beleaguered industrial zone. Residents have suffered from gas fumes, piercing noise pollution and tainted water wells. The gas companies have left behind unsightly and dangerous sites that the municipality can ill-afford to correct. Such problems can result in tax increases.

For the last two years, companies such as Equitable Productions, Noble Energy, Cabot Oil and Gas, Chief Oil and Gas, Southwestern Energy, Exco/North Coast, and Chesapeake Appalachia have sent free-lance contractors to approach landowners in the Upper Delaware River Watershed Basin - the source of pure-water for 25 million people. These contractors have asked landowners to sign leases that will allow for gas well drilling on their land.



After meetings with the PA Department of Environmental Protection (PA-DEP) and NY Department of Environmental Conservation (NY-DEC) - experts have calculated that over 10,000 wells will be drilled in the Upper Delaware River Watershed Basin. ONE well requires 3 to 5 million gallons of water in the initial drilling, and up to that much each time the well undergoes the hydraulic-fracturing process used to access the gas. This water is allowed to be taken from our streams, lakes, rivers, and aquifers. It is left polluted by the chemicals used in the drilling and fracturing. Some of this water leaches into the drinking water aquifers and surface waters. Some of this water is brought up and discarded, resulting in huge trucks damaging our roads or, as allowed by the PA-DEP & NY-DEC, put into the topsoil with the waste from the drilling. The PA-DEP & NY-DEC do not have sufficient staff to provide oversight on such drilling activity, and communities will be left to their own devices and budgets to deal with the problems that will inevitably arise.


THE RIVER REPORTER
"New hazard of gas drilling: flow-back water."
"Water Expert: Public Health is top drilling issue."
"DRBC to find out: What's in frack fluid?."
"Gas drilling opponents hold mass meeting."
"Congress investigates possible water contamination caused by gas well drilling."
"Western PA landowners regret deep gas wells deals."
"Local agencies allow gas drilling exemption."
"Their money or your life."
"…Nor any drop to drink."


Compensation for this from the private companies is at most minimal. We know that farmers in our areas are hurting financially. But we also know that they love their land. There has been a great deal of misinformation distributed about gas well drilling. Please help us to protect your drinking water and land and properties. Read the facts; talk to your neighbors; donate.

See original news item: DamascusCitizens.org, Feb-2009  
Related PlanetThoughts.org reading:
  FOREWORD: Will Natural Gas Fuel America In The 2... (May-14-2011)
  Catastrophic Incident That Endangered Life And P... (Jul-12-2010)
  Gasland -- The Not-So-Clean, Not-So-Natural Gas ... (Jun-21-2010)
  It's the Same Old Story: the Business / Energy /... (Jun-10-2009)
  Toilet to Tap: Orange County Turning Sewage Wate... (Mar-15-2009)
  Epic Environmental Disaster in Tennessee: Coal A... (Jan-2-2009)
  Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble: Marcellus Shal... (Dec-8-2008)

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Member: TheTeam (PlanetThoughts Team) The volunteers of PlanetThoughts.org are happy to give you their best selection of news, opinion, reviews, stories, quotes, tips, and more. We hope you enjoy the reading... and thinking. Thanks!

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