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Article published June 24, 2013
List of the harmed
Nancy Neel Butler
From time to time, I run across people who say they haven’t heard about the contaminated water wells in Connoquenessing Township, water wells that became unfit to use after Marcellus Shale gas wells were drilled and fracked near them. I also know of some people who say fracking is safe. I believe this lack of knowledge is due primarily to the heavy advertising and misinformation of the gas industry. Another cause is a lack of news coverage about the real dangers of fracking. I just finished reading the List of the Harmed on the Internet. This is a record of Americans who have been negatively impacted by the natural gas drilling industry. The list tells of one person in Colorado who, stricken with a near- lethal dose of hydrogen sulfide from gas wells, said his right eye felt like it was about to explode from the pain, that he had a migraine for a week and a half, and that he lost his voice for three days. In Texas, one person has to breathe in air which has 10 toxins in it from a gas processing plant. This individual gets repeated rashes and is always ill and is “sick and tired of being sick and tired.” A brine tanker struck and killed two young boys, seven and eight years old, in West Virginia. A myriad of other incidents can be found by doing a search on the Internet for the List of the Harmed. I challenge people to read the entire list. Then, as you read the list, pay attention to how you feel. Not to what you think — but how you feel. Then think about it. How can we end this very awful list?