Youngstown, Ohio, October 11, 2015 – Five organizations are coordinating a National Day of Action to take place on November 17, 2015 to raise public awareness of the serious threats to public health and safety from toxic and radioactive waste from hydraulic fracturing operations in the United States. This will be a timely event especially in light of increasing numbers of incidents associated with hydraulic fracturing (frack) waste.
The title of the November 17th nationwide event is: “Freedom from Toxic Fracking Waste and Earthquakes: A National Day of Action.” On that day, a national coalition of local coordinators and groups in communities across America will hold various events and actions throughout the day to shine light on the numerous problems associated with toxic fracking waste and its disposal, including its links to earthquakes, spills, and leaks.
Toxic and/or radioactive waste injected into disposal wells has been linked by scientists as causing earthquakes in Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas and other states, including in a number of areas which were previously seismically inactive. Waste transported and injected into wells also has been associated with contamination of water.
Since the federal classification of the waste from the oil/gas industry is listed as a “solid waste,” many states allow this waste to be dumped into our landfills. This practice threatens our drinking water. Some states allow the waste to be used as daily cover on landfills, causing further concerns for air emissions. In addition, some states allow desiccated oil and gas waste “brine” (dried saline toxic and radioactive waste) to be spread on roadways to melt ice and snow. Much of this material eventually is picked up by wind and spread into the air, threatening the health of those who might inhale it. This practice also threatens both surface and ground water.
The Center for Health, Environment and Justice (CHEJ www.chej.org ), Faith Communities Together for a Sustainable Future (FaCT www.factohio.org ), Frackfree America National Coalition (www.frackfreeamerica.org ) , Network for Oil & Gas Accountability & Protection, (NEOGAP www.NEOGAP.org ) and the Buckeye Forest Council (www.buckeyeforestcouncil.org) and Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA http://www.oeffa.org/) are coordinating the National Day of Action.
According to the coalition, permitted shale development wells will result in tons of radioactive drill cuttings and millions of gallons of toxic fracking wastewater being created, transported, and disposed of somewhere. Although the liquid fracking waste is frequently referred to by the industry or others as “brine,” “saltwater,” or “produced water,” the groups say that these euphemistic terms are highly misleading and give the public a false sense of reassurance about the alleged safety of the fracking waste.
Ron Prosek of FaCT – Faith Communities Together for a Sustainable Future said, “Fracking waste is the kind of thing Pope Francis was referring to when he said that we humans are turning our beautiful Creation into ‘filth.’ And this filth is more than just a defacing. It is a killing poison. As people of faith, we appeal to the consciences of all persons of goodwill and ask them to participate in a local action on November 17 to call attention to this moral outrage and to demand that fracking waste be banned.”
The groups cite a recent incident in Vienna, Ohio that demonstrates dangers associated with injection wells (WKBN-TV, April 5, 2015). In Vienna, a release of fluid near an injection well operation destroyed two wetlands and killed fish, turtles, and small mammals. As reported in the WKBN news story, one Vienna resident said regarding her water source: “It is my only source of water, drinking water, food source, bathing water. And if that is contaminated, I don’t know what we are going to do….”
[ Please see the following news video and article titled, “Hundreds attend public meeting on Vienna oil spill,” by Derrick Lewis, 4/5/15, WKBN TV 27: ]
For media inquiries or for more information on fracking and related processes, injection or disposal wells, toxic and radioactive fracking waste, or how to coordinate or participate in a local rally, please sign up for free e-mail updates on the Frackfree America National Coalition website and/ or contact us by phone, website, Facebook, twitter, or e-mail:
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