你好, 访客 | 登录 | 免费注册

The EPA Wants A Piece Of Your Fracking Mind

作者: Emily Gertz
   
收藏


Illustration of the hydraulic fracturing process
What Is Fracking?
Hydraulic fracturing, used in 9 out of 10 natural gas wells in the United States, involves pumping millions of gallons of water, sand and chemicals underground to break apart the rock and release the gas. Concern is growing that the chemicals used can harm human health and the environment.

Under the banner of “trade secrets,” many oil and gas companies have refused to reveal all the chemicals they are injecting deep underground, at high pressure, to reach and extract deposits of natural gas and shale oil.

This has increased worries that chemicals from fracking fluids could contaminate underground aquifers and wells used for drinking water, while staying hidden because no one would know what to test for.

That could change in the coming year, however. The Environmental Protection Agency is opening a 90-day public comment period“on what information could be reported and disclosed” about fracking chemicals, “and the approaches for obtaining this information.” EPA apparently wants to consider carrots like “incentives and recognition programs” that might encourage companies to create improved (less toxic) fracking chemicals, as well as regulatory sticks that would force them to reveal their ingredients.

Some states already require firms to reveal cloaked ingredients to state officials or doctors if contamination is suspected, but still leave the general public in the dark, according to Climate Central.

EPA's call for comments comes in part thanks to a 2011 petition by an environmental group, made under the Toxic Subtances Control Act. Earthjustice asked the agency to "require chemical manufacturers and processors to publish detailed information about the content of fluids used in fracking," as well as "that those companies submit all health and safety studies available on those fluid mixtures," according to Reuters.

Two related developments made big fracking news in April:

Houston-based Baker Hughes, one of the world's largest oil field services companies, announced that it would disclose all the chemicals in its fracking fluids, whille keeping their chemical formulae proprietary.

A Texas family won $2.925 million in damages from Aruba Petroleum, when a jury found that fracking operations near the family's 40-acre ranch had harmed their health, water supply, and property value. 

mf.gif


rc.img
rc.img
rc.img

a2.imga2t.img

课本信息
作者: Emily Gertz
发布者: yibei
 
创建时间: 2014-05-10
更新时间: 2014-05-13
版本:
1
 
编辑评分:
用户评分:
 
课本条目:
 
发布状态: 已发布
访问权限: 未知
 
书集: Popular Science
分类: 英文RSS精选