Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Radioactive Water From Fracking Found in Pennsylvania Creek According to Duke Study

Fracking
Radioactive Water From Fracking Found in Pennsylvania Creek According to Duke Study

By Laura Beans

Blacklick Creek, Pennsylvania. Photo credit: Datashed

A Duke University study published Wednesday in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, found dangerously high levels of radiation in a creek near a drilling wastewater treatment facility in Pennsylvania.  

The study, Impacts of Shale Gas Wastewater Disposal on Water Quality in Western Pennsylvania, was conducted over a period of two years from the summer of 2010 to the fall of 2012 and analyzed water samples discharged downstream of the Josephine Brine Treatment Facility into Blacklick Creek in the Allegheny River watershed, according to StateImpact, a project of National Public Radio. Sediment found in the creek contained levels of radium that were 200 times greater than normal levels, along with high levels of salts like chloride and bromide in the surface water.

These elements are naturally occurring and released during the fracking process. Radioactive brine, known as “flowback,” is typically shipped to centers like the Josephine Brine Treatment Facility or injected into wells.

“The recent Duke University study that found increased levels of radiation in a Pennsylvania creek linked to liquid waste from oil and gas drilling should serve as a wakeup call to Governor Kasich," said Food & Water Watch Ohio organizer Alison Auciello. "It should also make him think twice about accepting waste from oil and gas drilling operations in other states."

Last year, more than 14 million barrels of toxic waste from oil and gas drilling were injected into the ground in Ohio’s Class II disposal wells, with more than half of the wastewater coming from out-of-state. These injection wells, essential to the fracking industry, pose a series of threats to groundwater supplies and human health, and have been linked to increased seismic activity.

“What’s particularly alarming about the study’s finding for Ohio is that the waste from Pennsylvania’s oil and gas drillers that isn’t being adequately treated in Pennsylvania is being imported into our state for injection, with little to no testing for radioactivity," continued Auciello.

“The Ban Injection Wells coalition in Ohio has been instrumental in getting legislation introduced in the state House and Senate that would not only ban oil and gas waste injection wells, it would the stop discharge of the waste coming to treatment plants not equipped to treat radioactivity," said Auciello. "The Buckeye State should not be used as a dumping ground for drilling waste from any state. This legislation should be passed immediately to protect current and future generations of Ohioans.”

Visit EcoWatch’s FRACKING and FRACKING WASTEWATER pages for more related news on this topic.

——–

In an ad released by Republican Voters Against Trump, former coronavirus task force member Olivia Troye roasted the president for his response. Republican Voters Against Trump / YouTube

Yet another former Trump administration staffer has come out with an endorsement for former Vice President Joe Biden, this time in response to President Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Climate Group

Every September for the past 11 years, non-profit the Climate Group has hosted Climate Week NYC, a chance for business, government, activist and community leaders to come together and discuss solutions to the climate crisis.

Read More Show Less

Trending

A field of sunflowers near the Mehrum coal-fired power station, wind turbines and high-voltage lines in the Peine district of Germany on Aug. 3, 2020. Julian Stratenschulte / picture alliance via Getty Images

By Elliot Douglas

The coronavirus pandemic has altered economic priorities for governments around the world. But as wildfires tear up the west coast of the United States and Europe reels after one of its hottest summers on record, tackling climate change remains at the forefront of economic policy.

Read More Show Less
Monarch butterflies in Mexico's Oyamel forest in Michoacan, Mexico after migrating from Canada. Luis Acosta / AFP / Getty Images

By D. André Green II

One of nature's epic events is underway: Monarch butterflies' fall migration. Departing from all across the United States and Canada, the butterflies travel up to 2,500 miles to cluster at the same locations in Mexico or along the Pacific Coast where their great-grandparents spent the previous winter.

Read More Show Less
The 30th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony on Sept. 17 introduced ten new Ig Nobel Prize winners, each intended to make people "laugh then think." Improbable Research / YouTube

The annual Ig Nobel prizes were awarded Thursday by the science humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research for scientific experiments that seem somewhat absurd, but are also thought-provoking. This was the 30th year the awards have been presented, but the first time they were not presented at Harvard University. Instead, they were delivered in a 75-minute pre-recorded ceremony.

Read More Show Less

Support Ecowatch