How will #fracking affect Elko County?

  • Larry Hyslop/Correspondent Elko Daily Free Press

cross-posted for educational purposes

Let me start by saying I have no answer to the above question. If Noble Energy does indeed develop wells using hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, what will that mean to Elko County residents?

Noble Energy has held informative meetings and told us everything will be fine, that fracking will be good for the county. They said there is not a single proven case of fracking chemicals contaminating drinking water aquifers, and other problems either will not occur here or have been overblown.

However, it is difficult to accept these facts with so many other states having problems. What worries me most is we will not know the problems we face until operations are well underway and it is too late to change things.

A quick Internet search using “fracking problems” followed by various state names brought up long lists of articles, including these below.

• NBC News reported fracking wastewater appears to be linked to earthquakes in an Ohio town that has not seen past quakes. The state has ordered an indefinite moratorium on fracking within three miles of the earthquake epicenters. Not only am I alarmed at the thought of fracking causing seismic activity, but Elko lies in an area of high seismic activity. In 2008, if fracking operations had been in place near Wells, what would have happened because of that earthquake?

• The Washington Post reported Pennsylvania drilling for natural gas caused “significant damage” to drinking-water aquifers. The Texas Tribune reported that due to the recent drought, oil and gas companies may run short of needed water for operations in South Texas.

• Time magazine reported the House Energy and Commerce Committee found that 14 of the country’s most active hydraulic fracturing companies used 866 million gallons of fracking chemicals between 2005 and 2009. This does not include water, which makes up 99 percent of the fluid injected into wells.

• The Herald-Standard newspaper reported Williston, N.D. has a large methamphetamine drug problem brought in by a gang selling drugs among the oil workers.

• Governing the States and Localities website reports North Dakota roads, designed for farm-to-market travel, are not holding up under the big trucks accessing rigs and wells. On the Jiggs Highway, what effect will heavy truck traffic have on this small highway?

So help me out. Help me find an answer by telling me what you think. Will fracking be good or bad for Elko County? Are the possible problems overblown? If you believe fracking will cause problems, which ones do you worry about the most? Email me at hyslop.nv@gmail.com and put “fracking” in the subject line.

In two weeks I will report the results. I will not be able to quote your complete comments, but will report the consensus of responses.

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(6) comments

freewillie

The USGS says all industrial uses of water, including mining, use about 20 billion gallons per day. According to Mr. Hyslop the top 14 (IOW most all) companies engaged in hydraulic fracturing operations use (derived from the quoted 866 million gallons per 5 years x 100 to one water ratio) about 50 million gallons of water per day – 1/400 of industrial usage. When the same math is done for the 270 billion per day for all water usage in the US it’s 2/10,000. I’m not real worried.

freewillie

Before someone points out the obvious, Mr. Hyslop did not make this assertion, the article he quoted did.

Bland

Search the Net for anything + problems and you will get thousands of hits leading to articles that, unsurprisingly, detail problems. Which of these are worth consideration then becomes the issue. Since the level of bizarre claims by people looking for and, again unsurprisingly, finding “problems” seems to runs around a 100% it’s naive to give most the time of day. Try Googling “obama birth certificate” or “truth 911” for a taste of what I mean. The examples you site aren’t much better.

Bland

As an example of how misleading a search for problems can be, a full reading of The Washington Post story referenced shows one guy at the USEPA issued a report about methane in water in Penn. – a report that not only contradicts the final report that settled this matter by his own EPA but one that details gas in water that occurs naturally in that area anyway, is completely non-toxic in water anyway and has also long ago been ruled inconsequential by the Penn. State EPA.

powwowgirl

You need to do the research yourself
What is the Halliburton loop hole
What is horizontal drilling
What is in fracking fluid
How much water does it take to drill a well
Why is regulations on private land wells different than public land
How far back from the well is the water tested
How long do fracking jobs last
finally why did a family in Aruba Texas recently awarded 3 million dollars in a fracking poisoning case

powwowgirl

A family in Aruba Texas just was awarded 3 million for poisoning them. Headwated for the Humbolt river is the Mary’s River Valley. Ground water always follows surface water. Good luck with that North Texas!

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