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October 24th, 2013 Uncategorized

The recent increase in fracking as a method to get natural gas out of the ground has generated a controversy as to whether such approach is warranted.   Its supporters claim that it offers a great opportunity to secure a cheap source of domestic energy production and creates good jobs in the natural gas sector.  Its detractors claim that it has various adverse environmental consequences.   The method used to get to the natural gas allegedly increases the chances of earthquakes in the vicinity and the chemicals and water that are pumped in to the wells may contaminate local drinking water supplies.

Much of the territory that Oklahoma comprises is part of the Carey and Woodford Shales.   These are sites for drilling and fracking.  In 2012, there were 11,000 drilling sites in the state.   According to the Oklahoma Geological Survey, the state has seen a sharp rise in the number of earthquakes since this type of drilling started.  Most of these are difficult to detect.   However, the journal Geology recently reported that an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.7 on the Richter scale resulted from long-term injection of wastewater into these wells.

According to the International Journal of Human and Ecological Risk Assessment: Wastewater from fracking contains potentially toxic chemicals used in fracking fluid, as well as natural contaminants from deep underground, including total dissolved solids (e.g., salts, barium, strontium), organic pollutants (e.g., benzene, toluene) and normally occurring radioactive material (NORM) such as Radium 226.

An estimated 30% to 70% of the fluid used in fracking will resurface, requiring treatment. Fracking also releases “produced water” from underground that also rises to the surface, and can be anywhere from two to 200 times as much water, depending on the oil/gas/water concentrations in the shale formation.

There is still much that is not known about the process of fracking.  States, such as Oklahoma, have imposed new disclosure requirements about where these wells are located and if particular wells have certain problems.  If you have reason to believe that your drinking water has been contaminated or your own real estate has been damaged from the consequences of fracking, you may have a case against the parties responsible for that drilling.

At NOLAN CADDELL REYNOLDS, we represent individuals who have been the victims of toxic tort cases.  Call us now toll free at 1-800-709-5297 or locally at 479-782-5297.  We can also be reached online at www.nolancaddellreynolds.com.  Our attorneys welcome the opportunity to discuss your particular problem with you.lab-tech

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