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Ohio Utica Shale

California shuts down 11 injection wells, looking at 95 others

By Bob Downing Published: July 18, 2014

From ProPublica today:

CA Halts Injection of Fracking Waste, Warning It May Be Contaminating Aquifers

California officials have ordered an emergency shutdown of 11 oil and gas waste injection sites and a review of 95 others in the state's drought-wracked Central Valley out of fear that companies may have been pumping fracking fluids and other toxic waste into drinking water aquifers there, ProPublica's Abrahm Lustgarten reports.

The action comes as California's agriculture industry copes with a drought crisis that has emptied reservoirs and cost the state $2.2 billion this year alone. The lack of water has forced farmers to supplement their water supply from underground aquifers.

 

 

Key takeaways from Lustgarten's report:

  • At least 100 of the state's aquifers were presumed to be useless for drinking and farming because the water was either of poor quality, or too deep underground to easily access, so the state exempted them from environmental protection years ago -- allowing the oil and gas industry to intentionally pollute them.
  • However, not all aquifers were exempted, creating a patchwork system of protected and unprotected water resources deep underground. These exempted aquifers were also often identified by hand-drawn lines on a map, making it difficult to know today exactly which bodies of water were supposed to be protected, and by which aspects of the governing laws.
  • Experts say the aquifers the states and the EPA once thought would never be needed may soon become important sources of water as the climate changes and technology reduces the cost of pumping it from deep underground and treating it for consumption. It's already a reality in Wyoming and Texas.


You can read more in the full story here - http://www.propublica.org/article/ca-halts-injection-fracking-waste-warning-may-be-contaminating-aquifers/. It's free to link to or republish.
 

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Marcellus and Utica Shale Resource Center by Ohio law firm Bricker & Eckler.

Utica Shale, a compilation of Utica shale activities.

Landman Report Card, a site that looks at companies involved in gas and oil leases.FracFocus, a compilation of chemicals used in fracking individual wells as reported voluntarily by some drillers.

Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.

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Stop Fracking Ohio.

People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.

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No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.

Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.

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Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.