Quantcast

BREAKING: Ohio Residents Blockade Fracking Wastewater Injection Well Site

Energy

Ohio Fracktion

An Ohio resident is locked to the gate of a fracking wastewater injection well site in Trumbull County, Ohio protesting the failure of Ohio regulators to adequately test and monitor the dumping of toxic fracking wastewater in the state.

Ohio residents are blocking access to an injection well in Trumbull County this morning, protesting the failure of Ohio regulators to adequately test and monitor the dumping of toxic fracking wastewater in the state.

Trumbull County residents, along with supporters from Frack Free Mahoning and Ohio Fracktion, are gathered at the well site on Sodom Hutchings Road in Vienna Township, to express concerns about the contents of the 1,000 gallons of fracking wastewater that spilled along five miles of road in Fowler Township, a nearby residential area, on July 7.

They are demanding that the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) begin testing out-of-state frack wastewater that is being injected into more than 170 wells throughout Ohio. One protester has locked himself to the gate to prevent trucks carrying fracking wastewater from entering the site.

According to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA) spokesperson Mike Settles, emergency responders conducted only a simple pH test of the fracking wastewater that spilled along the roads of Fowler Township. As far as further testing for radiation, heavy metals and other chemicals that could be present in the spilled fracking wastewater, Settles explained that the OEPA doesn’t “have the resources" to perform testing unless there is a "legitimate concern” of environmental damage. However, thick, rust colored residue was still visible on the road one week after the spill.

Liberal Township Trustee Jodi Stoyak expressed her frustration with OEPA’s response in a July 12 letter to Mr. Settles, noting “many of the chemicals used in [fracking] and contained in the waste are officially classified individually as hazardous….  This, in my opinion, is a huge environmental concern.”

ODNR officials have ignored numerous written and oral requests from Ohio residents to order testing of the countless gallons of out-of-state fracking wastewater injected underground into Ohio each year. In response to a recent public records request asking ODNR to release all testing relevant to fracking waste, ODNR geologist Tom Tomastik provided no results taken after 1989.

A 2011 New York Times report revealed a widespread, massive presence of radioactive materials in fracking wastewater, including levels over 1,000 times federal drinking water standards.

Ohio residents are blocking access to an injection well in Trumbull County this morning, protesting the failure of Ohio regulators to adequately test and monitor the dumping of toxic fracking wastewater in the state.

A recent independently tested sample of fracking wastewater from Athens County revealed elevated levels of barium, arsenic, toluene, alpha particles and diesel particles nearly 300,000 times the federal standard for drinking water. State Representative Bob Hagan contacted the ODNR with a copy of these results on June 27 and requested that the ODNR begin testing fracking wastewater, citing his “serious concern that the safety and health of Ohio citizens is in jeopardy from the chemical contents of fracking wastewater.” As of July 16, he has received no reply.

This blockade comes just weeks after Madeline ffitch of Athens County chained herself to two barrels, blocking access to an injection well in west of Athens, Ohio. A statewide call-in day to demand that ODNR initiate a statewide brine-testing program is scheduled for Tuesday.

“How can the ODNR possibly allow fracking companies to dump untold volumes of fracking waste in our communities if they won’t even test it? How can they reassure us that a 1,000 gallon spill of waste is safe if they don’t even know what was in the fluid that was spilled?” asks Reverend Monica Beasley-Martin from Trumbull County. “We have been asking too long, and we have had enough. We need safe water and clean air. Ohio is not a sacrifice zone, and Ohio is not a dumping ground. ODNR: test the fracking waste now!”

Visit EcoWatch’s FRACKING page for more related news on this topic.

 

 

 

 

 

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Logging state in the U.S. is seen representing some of the consequences humans will face in the absence of concrete action to stop deforestation, pollution and the climate crisis. Mark Newman / Lonely Planet Images / Getty Images

Talk is cheap, says the acting executive secretary of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, who begged governments around the world to make sure that 2020 is not another year of conferences and empty promises, but instead is the year to take decisive action to stop the mass extinction of wildlife and the destruction of habitat-sustaining ecosystems, as The Guardian reported.

Read More
The people of Kiribati have been under pressure to relocate due to sea level rise. A young woman wades through the salty sea water that flooded her way home on Sept. 29, 2015. Jonas Gratzer / LightRocket via Getty Images

Refugees fleeing the impending effects of the climate crisis cannot be forced to return home, according to a new decision by the United Nations Human Rights Committee, as CNN reported. The new decision could open up a massive wave of legal claims by displaced people around the world.

Read More
Sponsored
The first day of the Strike WEF march on Davos on Jan. 18, 2020 near Davos, Switzerland. The activists want climate justice and think the WEF is for the world's richest and political elite only. Kristian Buus / In Pictures via Getty Images

By Ashutosh Pandey

Teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg is returning to the Swiss ski resort of Davos for the 2020 World Economic Forum with a strong and clear message: put an end to the fossil fuel "madness."

Read More
Protesters attend a rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court held by the group Our Children's Trust Oct. 29, 2018 in Washington, DC. The group and the plaintiffs have vowed to keep fighting and to ask the full Ninth Circuit to review Friday's decision to toss the lawsuit. Win McNamee / Getty Images

An appeals court tossed out the landmark youth climate lawsuit Juliana v. United States Friday, arguing that the courts are not the place to resolve the climate crisis.

Read More
The land around Red Knoll near Kanab, UT that could have been razed for a frac sand mine. Tara Lohan

By Tara Lohan

A sign at the north end of Kanab, Utah, proclaims the town of 4,300 to be "The Greatest Earth on Show."

Read More