Quantcast

Sick Residents Demand Truth from Chesapeake Energy

Energy

Earthworks

On March 12, Arlington, Texas residents and Earthworks’ Oil & Gas Accountability Project challenged Chesapeake Energy (NYSE:CHK) to provide independent verification of the company’s claim that fumes released from Chesapeake facilities in the Fish Creek, Norwood, and Oaks and Interlochen residential neighborhoods were simply steam—and therefore could not have caused harm to area residents. 

“Chesapeake tells us to disbelieve our lying eyes, burning noses and heart palpitations, and trust them when they claim the company is not releasing anything but steam,” said Fish Creek resident Jane Lynn. “Well, I don’t believe them. If Chesapeake’s assurances are worth anything, they’ll stand up to independent testing.”

Since December, Arlington residents have complained of negative health effects following strong chemical odors from Chesapeake Energy’s gas wells—all of which are hydraulic fractured. In response to public inquiries about the odors, Chesapeake’s Vice President for Urban Development, Julie Wilson, replied via email:

The “vapor” you see from the tanks on this site is steam from hot water. […] Despite the alarming stories that are unfortunately sometimes circulated, we can assure you there are no harmful emissions to worry about.

In March, Ranjana Bhandari reported to TCEQ a plume from the Lynn-Smith drill site dispersing towards homes in the Norwood, and Oaks and Interlochen residential neighborhoods. The plume was in an area that included both homes and schools.

“We were stuck at a traffic light with no way to escape the fumes! I experienced pain in my face and sinuses, and my son complained of a headache,” said Bhandari. “If Chesapeake is so confident the fumes from their operations are just steam, they should agree to independent testing to reassure the residents of the area.”

Requests to Arlington officials from residents and Earthworks’ organizer Sharon Wilson produced no response. TCEQ reported “no detectable odors” in response to requests. 

“The public has lost all confidence in our regulators and elected officials, and it’s because of behavior like this,” said Wilson. She continued, “Burying your head in the sand and wishing the problem away is not responsible oversight. That’s why we need independent, third-party testing and appropriate setbacks from homes and schools to protect public health and safety from these industrial facilities.”

For more information, click here.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

The staircase to a subway station in SOHO with a temporary closure, flood control installation sign. Jeffrey Greenberg / Universal Images Group / Getty Images

The Metropolitan Transit Authority in New York City tested out a new system designed to protect its subways stations from flooding when another super storm hits, creating a bizarre sight on Wednesday, as The Verge reported.

Read More Show Less
Flat-lay of friends eating vegan and vegetarian Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving dinner with pumpkin pie, roasted vegetables, fruit and rose wine. Foxys_forest_manufacture / Royalty-free / iStock / Getty Images

Thanksgiving can be a tricky holiday if you're trying to avoid animal products — after all, its unofficial name is Turkey Day. But, as more and more studies show the impact of meat and dairy consumption on the Earth, preparing a vegan Thanksgiving is one way to show gratitude for this planet and all its biodiversity.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Residents wear masks for protection as smoke billows from stacks in a neighborhood next to a coal fired power plant on Nov. 26, 2015 in Shanxi, China. Kevin Frayer / Getty Images

While most of the world is reducing its dependence on coal-fired power because of the enormous amount of greenhouse gases associated with it, China raised its coal fired capacity over 2018 and half of 2019, according to a new study.

Read More Show Less
Children run on the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail in California. Bureau of Land Management

By Matt Berger

It's not just kids in the United States.

Children worldwide aren't getting enough physical activity.

That's the main conclusion of a new World Health Organization (WHO) study released Wednesday.

Read More Show Less

By Tim Ruben Weimer

Tanja Diederen lives near Maastricht in the Netherlands. She has been suffering from Hidradenitis suppurativa for 30 years. Its a chronic skin disease in which the hair roots are inflamed under pain — often around the armpits and on the chest.

Read More Show Less