Butler County's great daily newspaper

7 incidents at 3 pads

January 26, 2013 Letters to the Editor

I would like to thank Butler Eagle reporters for their informative articles on the serious and continuing water problems in the Woodlands area. This local story highlights the damages that creep up whenever and wherever the controversial new technique of toxic fracking is used — namely, water and air contamination, illness, falling property values, divisions in the community, and indifference or inaction by local officials.

There was, however, an aspect of fracking that was left out of the scope of the recent articles: the frequent negligent and illegal activity of operators in the shalefields.

According to state Department of Environmental Protection data and Rex Energy’s third-quarter 2010 stockholders’ report, there have been at least seven reported incidents at three of the well pads closest to the affected homes, including violations involving a wastewater pond, failure to properly handle residual waste, an illegal stream discharge of industrial waste, and at least two failed well casings.

Coincidentally, the occurrence of the latter coincided with reports of problems with drinking water in the area.

Could it all be just happenstance that drinking water once considered safe turned bad the same time fracking started in the area?

For more information on these or other wells in Pennsylvania, Butler Eagle readers should visit http://stateimpact.npr.org/pennsylvania/drilling.

Readers might be surprised how frequently these problems occur.