EARTHblog » Bruce Baizel
By Bruce Baizel
December 16, 2011
If you felt the earth tremble beneath your feet this past week, it may not have been because of an earthquake caused by a nearby injection well, or a shale gas well being fracked on your neighbor’s property.
It was more likely because of two things, one good and one bad.
First, the bad news: the EPA confirmed that the presence of contamination in water wells near Pavillion, Wyoming could be due to hydraulic fracturing.
Second, the good news: two states – Texas and Colorado - approved chemical disclosure rules for hydraulic fracturing chemicals on the same day.
The larger victory here: the Colorado rule for the first time elevates the community right to know principle (disclosure) above the narrow economic principle of protecting corporate property.
The door has now been opened for other states and the U.S. Department of Interior to step through. Maybe a federal standard on disclosure would be a good next step.
By Bruce Baizel
September 28, 2011
NOTE: these comments were submitted before the EPA public hearing on hydraulic fracturing air pollution regulation in Denver on September 28th
My name is Bruce Baizel. I am Staff Attorney for Earthworks, a nonprofit organization that works with communities to reduce the impacts from mining and energy extraction. Our organization has worked on oil and gas issues for more than two decades and specifically on the issue of hydraulic fracturing for more than a decade.
I appreciate the opportunity to provide oral comment to you this morning. We have thousands of members throughout the Rocky Mountain states, in Texas and in the Marcellus shale region.
Many of our members are impacted by the currently unregulated emissions from oil and gas operations throughout those states.
So this proposed regulation providing a new source performance standard for Volatile Organic Compounds; a new source performance standard for sulfur dioxide; an air toxics standard for oil and natural gas production; and an air toxics standard for natural gas transmission and storage is of great importance to our members.
Overall, we strongly support the draft rule as a significant first step in addressing emissions from upstream oil and gas operations.