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Aug. 20 US: Fracking Hazards Obscured In Failure To Disclose Wells

This article was from Bloomberg, and describes the oil and gas industries failure to completely volunteer chemical and other information on a substantial portion of their wells in the US.

Seeking to quell environmental concerns about the chemicals it shoots underground to extract oil and natural gas, Apache Corp. (APA) told shareholders in April that it disclosed information about “all the company’s U.S. hydraulic fracturing jobs” on a website last year.

Energy companies failed to list more than two out of every five fracked wells in eight U.S. states from April 11, 2011, when FracFocus began operating, through the end of last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The gaps reveal shortcomings in the voluntary approach to transparency on the site, which has received funding from oil and gas trade groups and $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy.

Bloomberg’s analysis, covering states that accounted for 64 percent of U.S. gas production in 2010, shows the difficulty of getting a full picture of the industry’s transparency. Because there’s no official national database of fracked wells, Bloomberg chose states that had reliable records on when gas and oil wells started producing or were completed — that is, made ready to flow — and thus were candidates for posting on FracFocus.

Homeowners in Pennsylvania, Texas and Wyoming have complained that their well water was contaminated with chemicals or methane gas from nearby frack jobs. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last year linked the method to contaminated drinking water in Pavillion, Wyoming; the agency is now retesting some of those findings. The EPA has little authority to regulate fracking; Congress in 2005 stripped it of most such power.

To read the full article and find more information please click the link “Bloomberg” at the beginning of this post.

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