Posted 5 years ago on Jan. 15, 2012, 6:26 a.m. EST by GirlFriday
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The energy industry sees no problem perpetuating our love affair with burning hydrocarbons. And they reassure us that, putting concerns re global warming aside, fracking is totally safe. "There is not one -- not one -- reported case of a freshwater aquifer having ever been contaminated," according to Rex Tillerson, CEO of ExxonMobil at congressional hearings last year.
Tell that to the residents of Pavillion, Wyoming. The EPA has found petroleum contaminants in 17 of 19 wells tested, and nearby shallow groundwater had benzene at 50 times the permitted levels, with a pH equivalent to household bleach. The sad prognosis is that the incidence of cancer will rise dramatically over the next generation, but already four out of five residents surveyed have complaints linked to the gas drilling operation.
The list of complaints is long, including headaches, respiratory problems, dizziness, hair loss, skin rashes, severe itching, nausea, mood disorders and other neurological symptoms. A group of doctors, nurses and environmentalists in New York have sent a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo citing growing evidence of health risks associated with gas drilling, and asking for the issue to be properly studied before granting more gas drilling permits.
Just as scary is methane leaking into drinking water near fracking sites. This has resulted in some homeowners witnessing their wells exploding, as well as setting their tap water on fire. http://www.dailycamera.com/ci_19738026