Despite all the economic boom that fracking has brought to the state of Pennsylvania, residents have quickly seen the consequences the practice has had on the quality of living in the state. Residents of the state have learned this all too well after learning that most of the local well water in the area is unfit to drink as it has been found be contaminated by a number of toxic metals and other chemicals linked to both fracking and mining. In a radio interview with one local activist, host of the program Living on Earth, Steve Curwood spoke to local activist Reid Frazier of the Allegheny Front about the situation on the ground.
“The boxes are loaded with gallon jugs of spring water. This is his drinking water for the week. You’ve heard of a food drive? This is a water drive. It was organized a couple of years ago after neighbors in Fair’s community, called the Woodlands, say their water quality deteriorated. They blamed nearby drilling rigs for the water problems. Fair says he drilled a water well three years ago at his home. The water was perfect, he said. Then it started smelling bad like rotten eggs, and it looked like mud.”
“The company drilling the nearby gas wells, Rex Energy, initially provided Fair [John Fair of the Woodlands, Connoquenessing Township] and his neighbors with drinking water, but that ended in 2012, when the state said gas activities were not the cause of the water problems. The state’s Department of Environmental Protection found water had high levels of iron and manganese before drilling began, and the EPA agreed. Some in the Woodlands say they’ve had problems with their well water in the past: that it smelled bad, or that after rainstorms it became dirty. But they say it got worse when drilling commenced, and some of them, including Fair, are suing Rex because of it.”
The entire transcript for the program can be found here.