cost of fracking

June 15, 2012


Towanda Creek in Pennsylvania.//
2009 photo by Labenedict via WikiCommons and appearing
on Earth Institute’s state of the planet blog.

Chesapeake Energy has agreed to pay $500,000 for monitoring water quality in the Susquehanna River,  Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler said today. In May 2011, Gansler filed an intent to sue Chesapeake after an April 19, 2011, blowout at one of the company’s natural gas drilling sites in Bradford County, PA. Thousands of gallons of fracking fluid escaped the “inadequate containment,” Gansler said in a press release, and for two days poured over farmland and into the Towanda Creek, a tributary of the Susquehanna River. The river provides drinking water for 6.2 million people and about half of the fresh water that enters the Chesapeake Bay. The company also paid $190,000 in fines in Pennsylvania for the incident.

In May 2011, American Rivers put the Susquehanna at the top of its annual list of 10 most endangered rivers in the country because of the threats from fracking. The group said the “rush to develop natural gas has come without consideration of the impacts to clean water, rivers, and the health of these communities.” (This year’s list doesn’t include the Susquehanna, although two rivers, the Grand River in Ohio and Hoback River in Wyoming, are included because of threats from fracking, and the Coal River in West Virginia is included because of threats from mountaintop removal for coal mining.)


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