(MintPress) – “No Frack Waste By Truck, No Frack Waste By Boat, No Greenhunter Waste Down Ohio’s Throat” read a sign at a protest this week opposing the transport of toxic fracking fluid through Ohio. Anti-fracking activists successfully shut down a fracking wastewater storage facility Tuesday after one protester climbed a 30-foot pole attached to […]
(MintPress) – “No Frack Waste By Truck, No Frack Waste By Boat, No Greenhunter Waste Down Ohio’s Throat” read a sign at a protest this week opposing the transport of toxic fracking fluid through Ohio. Anti-fracking activists successfully shut down a fracking wastewater storage facility Tuesday after one protester climbed a 30-foot pole attached to a truck.
The presence of demonstrators on the closed site prevented trucks from entering and removing fracking wastewater, a mixture of more than 500 chemicals including 29 known carcinogens. Ten were arrested for breaking and entering the company grounds.
More than 100 protesters took part in the action, gathering at the base of Greenhunter Water hydraulic fracturing waste storage facility in the town of Matamoros, protesting the company’s plans to increase capacity for toxic frack wastewater dumping and transport in Ohio.
One of the more objectionable proposals includes Greenwater’s desire to ship wastewater across the Ohio River via barge. Any accidental spill of toxic frack waste water could endanger the safety of the Ohio River and the millions who depend on it as a source of drinking water. Greenwater is awaiting permission from the U.S. Coast Guard to begin the transport of wastewater.
Large companies like Halliburton have been able to begin drilling natural gas wells in Wyoming, Colorado and several other states in the western United States by securing an exemption to the Clean Air Act of 1963 and the Clean Water Act of 1972. Halliburton and other oil and natural gas companies obtained an exemption to these key environmental protections in 2005, known as the “Halliburton loophole” — this has allowed natural gas companies to use fracking fluid with dozens of known cancer-causing substances despite federal regulations prohibiting their use.
This point is confirmed by a scientific investigation published April 2011 by the U.S. House of Representatives Committee On Energy and Commerce, stating:
“The oil and gas service companies used hydraulic fracturing products containing 29 chemicals that are (1) known or possible human carcinogens, (2) regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act for their risks to human health or (3) listed as hazardous air pollutants under the Clean Air Act. These 29 chemicals were components of 652 different products used in hydraulic fracturing.”
The battle in Ohio happens at the same time as anti-fracking demonstrations in New York heat up. Sustained grassroots protests have persuaded New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to delay any concrete decision on fracking until a comprehensive health study is completed.
The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has become a sounding board for public opposition to fracking in the Empire State, holding public comment sessions to gauge public opinions of hydraulic fracturing.
After the latest 30-day public comment period concluded last month, the DEC had more than 200,000 public comments, the majority of which were in opposition to fracking.
The New York Department of Health charged with determining fracking risks to public safety could miss the Feb. 27 deadline to submit findings due to the “complexity of the issues.” If the Department of Health misses the deadline a final decision on fracking could be delayed for months.