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Investigation: Clorox Selling Pool Salt Made From ...

You might be shocked to learn that a Clorox product used to treat swimming pools came from fracking wastewater. Public Herald has discovered that Eureka Resources, a company based in Pennsylvania, has been treating wastewater from shale gas development — a.k.a. “fracking” — and packaging the crystal byproduct as “Clorox Pool Salt” for distribution since 2017. The way it works is fracking wastewater gets trucked to Eureka...

Economics professor discovers concerning effects f...

Oil and gas “boomtowns,” such as Ohio’s Belmont County, may be bearing the costs of drilling without reaping all of its benefits, according to a newly published paper by Dr. Amanda Weinstein, assistant professor of economics at The University of Akron. Weinstein, along with coauthors Mark Partridge and Alexandra Tsvetkova from The Ohio State University, researched the flow of money in energy boomtowns...

New Ohio law would allow the sale of drilling brin...

A new Ohio House bill would allow the sale of commercialized brine produced during fracking and oil drilling for use on roadways — something Athens’ city officials plan to oppose. Ohio House Bill 393, introduced by Ohio State Representatives Anthony Devitis, R, and Michael J. O’Brien, D, would allow the “sale of brine as a commodity for surface applications.” That would mean that brine, a byproduct of oil and gas drilling,...

EPA criminal action against polluters hits 30-year...

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency hit a 30-year low in 2018 in the number of pollution cases it referred for criminal prosecution, Justice Department data show. EPA said in a statement that it is directing “its resources to the most significant and impactful cases.” But the 166 cases referred for prosecution in the last fiscal year is the lowest number since 1988, when Ronald Reagan was president and 151...

A Disturbing Tale of Diminishing Returns in Ohio

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently announced that Ohio’s recoverable shale gas reserves have magically increased by 11,076 billion cubic feet (BCF). This increase ranks the Buckeye State in the top 5 for changes in recoverable shale natural gas reserves between 2016 and 2017 (pages 31- 32 here). After reading the predictable and superficial media coverage, we thought it was time to revisit the data to...

EPA Bows to Coal Industry, Moves to Weaken Mercury...

In its latest attack on clean air protections, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its new proposal to weaken the Obama-era Mercury & Air Toxics Standards (MATS), putting public health at risk from more than 80 dangerous pollutants, some of which are known to cause brain damage in children. “This is an unconscionable rollback to serve the coal industry at the expense of all Americans, especially...

Study Finds Health Threats Posed By Oil And Gas Wa...

Unpaved roads are large sources of dust in the U.S., which can contribute to heart and lung disease. Photo: Center for Dirt and Gravel Road Studies STATE IMPACT PENNSYLVANIA – Spreading oil and gas wastewater has been a common and cheap way for municipalities to suppress dust on unpaved roads in parts of Pennsylvania for years. But a new study found the practice — which the state recently ended — could threaten environmental...

More solar panels mean more waste and there’s no e...

Solar panels might be the energy source of the future, but they also create a problem without an easy solution: what do we do with millions of panels when they stop working? In November 2016, the Environment Ministry of Japan warned that the country will produce 800,000 tons of solar waste by 2040, and it can’t yet handle those volumes. That same year, the International Renewable Energy Agency estimated that there were...

It’s Official: Injection of Fracking Wastewa...

The largest earthquake ever recorded in Kansas—a 4.9 magnitude temblor that struck northeast of Milan on Nov. 12, 2014—has been officially linked to wastewater injection into deep underground wells, according to new research from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The epicenter of that extremely rare earthquake struck near a known fracking operation. LINK to video: https://youtu.be/0p1sTZ0MpU0 The Wichita Eagle noted from...

Ohio Residents Fed Up With Fracking Wastewater

Much of the wastewater from Pennsylvania’s fracking industry is trucked across the border to Ohio.  Last year, Pennsylvania and West Virginia contributed nearly half of the more than a billion gallons of frack waste that were  injected into underground wells in Ohio. Residents in at least one county say they’ve had enough. State representative Glenn Holmes (third from right) has introduced two bills in the Ohio House of...

How slick water and black shale in fracking combin...

Radioactivity in fracking wastewater comes from the interaction between a chemical slurry and ancient shale during the hydraulic fracturing process, according to Dartmouth College research. The study, detailed in twin papers appearing in Chemical Geology, is the first research that characterizes the phenomenon of radium transfer in the widely-used method to extract oil and gas. The findings add to what is already generally...

Solar Energy Largely Unscathed by Hurricane Floren...

In North Carolina, the #2 solar state, Florence was the first extreme weather test for much of its renewable energy. Nuclear and coal ash had flood problems. North Carolina gets nearly 5 percent of its electricity from solar panels. The state’s solar farms survived Hurricane Florence with little damage. Credit: Duke Energy Faced with Hurricane Florence’s powerful winds and record rainfall, North Carolina’s...

EPA Exodus: Nearly 1,600 Workers Have Left Since T...

Since President Donald Trump took office, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has seen an exodus of nearly 1,600 former federal employees, including some who say they “did not want to any longer be any part of this administration’s nonsense” and believed they “could do better work” elsewhere, according to a new report from the Washington Post. “I felt it was time to leave given...

Trump to Roll Back Obama-Era Methane Rules

The Trump administration is planning to roll back Obama-era rules on methane emissions from oil and gas production, the New York Times reported Monday. Documents reviewed by the Times show that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is planning as early as this week to significantly relax two-year-old regulations on how often drillers must monitor and repair methane leaks, and let producers in states with lax methane...

New Study Links Fracking To Unsustainable Water Us...

Everybody is talking about a new report that credits the US oil and gas fracking boom with a 770% increase in water consumption over the past few years. The sharp increase is certainly eye-catching but it’s not exactly a surprise. The force of the water-energy nexus is strong within the fossil fuel industry, especially when the idea is to force massive volumes of water into underground rock formations. So, what’s really the...