Quantcast

New Jersey Legislature Moves Bill to Ban Fracking Wastewater

Fracking

Food & Water Watch

Fueled by massive opposition to fracking, demonstrated by a recent 1,000 person rally outside of the New Jersey State House, the Assembly Environment Committee passed A-4231 [Connie Wagner (D-Bergen), Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer)], a bill that would ban the importation of fracking wastewater into New Jersey for transport or processing. This legislation aims to protect New Jersey residents from the residual impacts of fracking in Pennsylvania and other states.

Pennsylvania resident Shannon Pendelton testified about contamination of Neshaminy Creek as a result of approximately 40,0000 gallons of fracking wastewater being discharged into a local waterway after it was processed at a treatment facility. Neshaminy Creek provides drinking water to 17 municipalities with more than 300,000 residents.

“Our home in Pennsylvania is 3-plus hours away from the nearest fracking wells, yet our municipal water was exposed repeatedly to contaminated fracking wastewater that was being trucked into our community without any public knowledge," said Pendleton. We hope our misfortune will help other states and communities prohibit fracking to prevent contaminated wastewater from entering their drinking water. Please don’t expose New Jersey to this threat.”

It is difficult if not impossible to know which chemicals are present in fracking wastewater because federal law allows fracking companies to withhold the chemical composition as trade secrets. There are also concerns that radioactive elements in the Earth's crust such as radium, radon and barium are picked up by the fracking fluid underground and are present in the wastewater, increasing the risk of serious contamination. Beyond these toxins, fracking waste also contains high amounts of salts, which can be costly to remove, can adversely impact wildlife and harm public health.

“Every load of fracking wastewater contains a different toxic mix, making it nearly impossible for treatment facilities to verify that adequate treatment has taken place before being discharged into waterways,” said Jim Walsh of Food & Water Watch. “If a fracking wastewater truck has an accident, hazmat teams will not know how to handle waste that could be spilling onto our roads and into New Jersey waterways.”

In December, the New Jersey Legislature will have an opportunity to vote on this bill and other legislation that was vetoed by Gov. Chris Christie that would have banned the practice of fracking in New Jersey.

“In the face of massive public opposition, Gov. Christie has been stonewalling efforts to protect the public from the very real dangers of fracking. By overriding the Governor’s veto and passing this wastewater legislation, the legislature can show leadership where the Governor has failed to do so,” said Walsh.

For more information, click here.

—————

Food & Water Watch works to ensure the food, water and fish we consume is safe, accessible and sustainable. So we can all enjoy and trust in what we eat and drink, we help people take charge of where their food comes from, keep clean, affordable, public tap water flowing freely to our homes, protect the environmental quality of oceans, force government to do its job protecting citizens, and educate about the importance of keeping shared resources under public control.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

"It would be great to see all the candidates join Elizabeth Warren in taking the No Big Ag Money Pledge," said Citizens Regeneration Lobby's Alexis Baden-Mayer. Peter Blanchard / Flickr / ric (CC BY 2.0)

By Andrea Germanos

Food system justice and environmental advocates on Wednesday urged all Democratic presidential hopefuls to follow in the footsteps of Sen. Elizabeth Warren in signing a pledge rejecting campaign cash from food and agribusiness corporations.

Read More
A new study shows the impact Native Americans had on landscapes was "small" compared to what followed by Europeans. The findings provide important takeaway for conservation in New England today, seen above in a view of areas surrounding Rangeley Lakes in Maine. Cappi Thompson / Moment / Getty Images

There's a theory going around that Native Americans actively managed the land the lived on, using controlled burns to clear forests. It turns out that theory is wrong. New research shows that Native Americans barely altered the landscape at all. It was the Europeans who did that, as ZME Science reported.

Read More
Sponsored
Loggers operate in an area of lodgepole pine trees killed by the mountain pine beetle in the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest on Sept. 13, 2019 in Montana. As climate change makes summers hotter and drier in the Northern Rockies, forests are threatened with increasing wildfire activity, deadly pathogens and insect infestations, including the mountain pine beetle outbreak. The insects have killed more than six million acres of forest across Montana since 2000. Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

President Donald Trump told a crowd at the Davos World Economic Forum Tuesday that the U.S. will join the Forum's 1t.org initiative to restore and conserve one trillion trees around the world, according to The Hill.

Read More
Wild rice flatbread is one of many Native recipes found in Indigikitchen. Indigikitchen

The online cooking show Indigikitchen is providing a platform to help disseminate Indigenous food recipes — while helping eaters recognize their impact on the planet and Native communities.

Read More

On the Solomon Islands, rats and poachers are the two major threats to critically endangered sea turtles. A group of local women have joined forces to help save the animals from extinction.

Read More