3 Billion Gallons of Highly-Toxic Fracking Waste Dumped Into California Drinking Water Supply

California Has Been Fracked

We’ve warned for years that fracking pollutes our scarce drinking water. As the Emmy-winning documentary Gasland demonstrates,  fracking is polluting water all over the country.

A study published in the journal Ground Water predicts that the highly-toxic fluids used in fracking can migrate to aquifers within a few short years.

NBC Bay Area news reported last week that 3 billion gallons of highly-toxic fracking waste was injected into California’s aquifers:

In a time when California faces an historic drought, the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit has uncovered that state officials allowed oil and gas companies to pump billions of gallons of waste water into protected aquifers.

***

State officials allowed oil and gas companies to pump nearly three billion gallons of waste water into underground aquifers that could have been used for drinking water or irrigation.

Those aquifers are supposed to be off-limits to that kind of activity, protected by the EPA.

***

California’s Department of Conservation’s Chief Deputy Director, Jason Marshall, told NBC Bay Area, “In multiple different places of the permitting process an error could have been made.”California’s Department of Conservation’s Chief Deputy Director, Jason Marshall, told NBC Bay Area, “In multiple different places of the permitting process an error could have been made.”

***

“This is something that is going to slowly contaminate everything we know around here,” said fourth- generation Kern County almond grower Tom Frantz, who lives down the road from several of the injection wells in question.

According to state records, as many as 40 water supply wells, including domestic drinking wells, are located within one mile of a single well that’s been injecting into non-exempt aquifers.

***

“That’s a huge concern and communities who rely on water supply wells near these injection wells have a lot of reason to be concerned that they’re finding high levels of arsenic and thallium and other chemicals nearby where these injection wells have been allowed to operate,” said Kretzmann.

Fracking Pumps Out Huge Quantities of Methane

Scientists found that fracking pumps out a lot of methane … into both our drinking water and the environment. Indeed, a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences finds that fracking puts between 100 and 1,000 times more methane into the atmosphere than the EPA assumed.

For those worried about global warming, you should note that methane is a powerful greenhouse gas: 72 times more potent as a warming source than CO2.  As such, fracking won’t decrease global warming … if anything, it will increase it.

Fracking Causes Earthquakes

Scientists have concluded that fracking actually causes earthquakes.  Some fracking companies now admit this fact.

And yet is allowed within 500 feet of nuclear power plants. That’s a recipe for disaster.

Fracking Is a Ponzi Scheme

Economically, fracking is a ponzi scheme, which has a lot in common with the subprime mortgage scam.

Fracking Our Liberties

A law passed in Pennsylvania allows doctors to access information about chemicals used in fracking, but will restrict them from sharing that information with their patients. See the writeups by Mother Jones and Truthout.

The director of the Emmy-award winning documentary on fracking – Gasland – was arrested for attempting to film a Congressional hearing on fracking.

Actor Mark Ruffalo was put on a terror watch list after he organized showings of Gasland.

The Washington Post reported in 2012 that the FBI is investigating anti-fracking activists as potential terrorists.

The state of Pennsylvania hired an Israeli-American company with extensive military and intelligence ties to put out “terror” alerts. The company – ITRR – describes itself as:

The preeminent Israeli/American security firm providing training, intelligence and education to clients across the globe.

ITRR explains:

The Institute of Terrorism Research and Response’s research and analysis center, known as the Targeted Actionable Monitoring Center (TAM-C), is located in Israel. The Targeted Actionable Monitoring Center is staffed with former law enforcement, military, and intelligence professionals experienced in the production and utilization of intelligence products.

ITRR considered opponents of fracking to be potential terrorists.

Fracking companies are also using military psychological operations techniques to discredit opponents (and see this).

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  • jadan

    The power of government that supposedly represents the public interest, is hijacked by a special interest that uses government and military police power to promote itself. The corporate mandate to create profits, even at the expense of the pubic interest is a feature of fascism where an elite suppresses the majority will. But this isn’t new. Mining interests have always had special government support as have the rail roads and other big money industries. All the large corporate players, steel, oil, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, etc, get special attention under capitalism: special access to natural resources as well as capital investment. The fracking story is a story of good old fashioned capitalism. Corporate fascism is the American way. Corporate fascism is the character of latter day capitalism which has found the ultimate ally in the national security state. This is the end game. It’s all down hill from here.

  • Southern

    What options become available where there’s no more potable water — crops fail and life stocks will suffer — scarcity creates demand — will drinking water be imported from that large property that the Bush family owns in Paraguay ?

    Desalination will also push up the price of drinking water.

    • Veri1138

      What do you make of the Conservative argument that the water problem is simply a matter of improper allocation of current resources?

      Quite frankly, the matter has a hole in it regarding resources that are no longer there, i.e. groundwater.

      • Southern

        The problem with conservatives is that they’re so bloody obedient to their corporate masters. Conservatives are lacking good moral standards & will do anything for money and a step up the corporate ladder.

        As per usual, the conservative argument is severely lacking in logic — their argument essentially comes down to — anything goes provided it creates a profit — no matter the consequences — the consequence of hydraulic fracturing are of no benefit to the health of the planet and all the creatures that live on it — hydraulic fracturing is all about creating corporate profits – energy can be harvested from a variety of new and innovative ideas that do the environment little to no harm.

        The problem with corporations* is that they have a different set of priorities to human needs. Corporations need to create profits or they’ll go out of business — so thats what they’ll set out to do — never mind that it ultimately kills the shareholders — it means so much more profits for the corporation.

        Ultimately it all goes back to the Lewis Powell memo A blue print how corporations can remain unaccountable for everything that they do.

        * Not including charitable organisations registered as corporations.

    • Joan Tvedt

      exactly

      • Southernfink

        Thank you, the current batch of deceptively termed free trade agreements are all about empowering corporations in order to make governments accountable to their financial agenda – at a significant cost to civil rights and the environment.

        • Gina

          A descrition of the free trade agreements avant la lettre:

          Internet Archive,
          Protocol of the Learned Elders of Zion

          https://archive.org/details/TheProtocolsOfTheLearnedEldersOfZion

          Link to the protocol:

          https://archive.org/stream/TheProtocolsOfTheLearnedEldersOfZion/ProtocolsOfTheEldersOfZion#page/n5/mode/1up

          Protocol No. 2

          1. It is indispensable for our purpose that wars, so far as possible, should
          not result in territorial gains: war will thus be brought on to the economic ground, where
          the nations will not fail
          to perceive in the assistance we give the strength of our predominance, and this
          state of things will put both sides at the mercy of our international AGENTUR;
          which possesses millions
          of eyes ever on the watch and unhampered by any limitations whatsoever.
          Our international rights will then wipe out national rights, in the proper
          sense of right, and will rule the nations precisely as the civil law of States
          rules the relations of their subjects among themselves. (p.14)

          • Southernfink

            That further confirms the conspiracy led by the international bankers.

          • Gina

            The document was first published in 1905 !!! I think it wasn’t then possible to recognize that it is reality, but I think with the assassination of JFK things were getting apparent.

            As to the protocols they are not about religion or ethnic groups, they are as you say about the international bankers & the rest of us. The protocols describe very well the mindset. I’m surprised by the simple language & thoughts, …

          • Southernfink

            Thought is was important to keep religion and politics separated – that does not excuse those that have sunken so low and deceptively use religion and whatever means to further their political agenda and thus personal gains.

            Social media trolls included !

          • Gina

            If all religions were taken away, things would be apparent. Religion is really opium for the people, & peoply jump & stay so diligently on that bandwagon. During christmas time the mighty ones were in talks about the free trade agreements, & the torture report was published, & …

  • TessaC

    EPA, indeed. More like a means by the Federal Reserve Banks to pocket our revenue and throw us a few crumbs (token cases for public display). Industrial waste is put in the water supply all over the country…fluoride aint just fluoride anymore. Mega farms use industrial waste in fertilizers…and top it off with ‘Round Up’.

  • Kenton Sallee

    I’m going to play devil’s-advocate here. Sorry not trolling it just bugged me. I don’t like the idea of breaking-up shale/rock using toxic fluids, but the burden is on us to stop it because there is money to be made and many people don’t care about long term costs if there’s money involved. We can’t fall into the “tree hugger” stereotype though. Articles written need to be carefully edited because mistakes give fodder to the industry that people worried about the consequences of fracking are lunatics. Last line of this article/blog is a link to “military psychological operations techniques to discredit opponents”->sounds like conspiracy from a paranoid schizophrenic. Tack on a lot of other links/references/mistakes and it becomes apparent that this is not objectivity, it is alarmist. That’s fine, but keep in mind you do not need to point this out to people that are already against it; You need to convince people who support it that it’s not a good idea. The following paragraph from this article is an example of why we should be more careful before hitting “submit” (ctrl->v too many times?):

    California’s Department of Conservation’s Chief Deputy Director, Jason Marshall, told NBC Bay Area, “In multiple different places of the permitting process an error could have been made.”California’s Department of Conservation’s Chief Deputy Director, Jason Marshall, told NBC Bay Area, “In multiple different places of the permitting process an error could have been made.”

  • Richard

    URGENT! Take My word readers the radiation will increase in the pacific ocean and on the coastline and beaches of CA and the entire west coast of the United States and Canada! People swimming and eating fish and seafood from the Pacific should think hard about DETOXING THEMSELVES with the natural mineral called ZEOLITE! TEPCO the Japanese nuclear power company continues to lie to the people of Japan and to the world about the true levels of radiation released into the atmosphere, ground and into the Pacific Ocean! TEPCO also continues to dump millions of gallons of radioactive waste into the Pacific Ocean nonstop every single day to contaminate the plant life, insects, fish, ocean life and animals. We are now being told not to eat anyTuna and large fish at all because the radiation levels are unsafe to put into our body’s and Fukushima radiation is now verified to be moving into the coast of California and the beaches will soon be polluted with this radiation! There is now verified proof of DNA damage and mutations throughout the food chain and we humans are next to suffer! and if we don’t detox our bodies suffer we will! Experts recommend to commence detoxing with the natural mineral called zeolite that is proven to safely remove both radiation and heavy metals from the human body.This detox is VERY important to help prevent DNA damage that will cause disease and future ongoing mutations! For more quality information do an online search for the website with the single word Zeolite.

    • Kenton Sallee

      A timely example. If half the sentences end in exclamation marks and many words are in capital letters, chances are it’s an alarmist message. CALM DOWN! I’m sure Zeolite appreciates the exposure.

      • Richard

        Its for the people so they can know that they have a choice if they need or want to remove the radiation and toxic heavy metals from their bodies.

        • Kenton Sallee

          I think that’s great, we should all be aware of toxins/radiation and do what’s needed to fix it, especially if it’s being hidden by governments/companies. Words in all capital letters and exclamation marks should be avoided. Present the evidence in a calm manner or you will be dismissed as paranoid. Presenting a specific product to alleviate supposed symptoms will also cause speculation. The internet is a hive of false-information, so to be taken seriously it’s best to stay away from the typical signs of “astro-turf” or similar Nigerian Prince-style posts. Just saying…peace be upon you!

      • Richard

        The chemicals used for fracking are toxic and should be outlawed. Why not use the vast coastline of CA to build ocean wave hydro generators! They are proven to work well. They could help a lot!

        • Kenton Sallee

          I agree, I’ve heard the tidal force has been used to generate electricity (using large underwater “wings” that take the force of water moving). Solar in other regions is great too, they’re getting pretty close to Photo-voltaic solar cells that are on-par with traditional energy (coal/gas/oil). Getting the old industry to let go and accept a new clean energy will be tough though.

    • Charles Fourie

      You are right about the radiation. The Pacific ocean is dead. TEPCO is an AMERICAN company.You cannot blame the Japanese. Time WE THE PEOPLE take action against ALL American companies destroying the planet. They also fund GREEN PEACE.

  • What total bullcrap by the EnviroNazis!

  • Norbert

    Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. A government big enough to give you everything you want is also big enough to take everything you have.

  • Woody

    Bunch of tree hugging, liberal sissies. Give me a break. The fracking going on is thousands and thousands of feet below and water table. This is ridiculous. I work in the oilfield. Thank God Texas is still a conservative state. Yall complain when there is high gas prices and we have to import all our oil and gas, but when America starts becoming a leader in the world for oil production and gas prices fall, you can hear the crickets chirp. We will always need fossil fuels. Whether you like it or not. And before you talk about all these dangerous chemicals, maybe read up on what is pumped down there. Mostly water and sand. And most of it is recovered anyways.