EARTHblog » Nadia Steinzor
January 3, 2014
During a recent low-energy session of channel surfing, my mood was lifted by the broadcast of the original Wizard of Oz. As the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Lion sang of the need for a brain, a heart, and courage, the tale seemed serendipitous.
As reported earlier in Earthblog, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court exhibited all those qualities in striking down parts of Act 13 and upholding municipal zoning as a way to stem drilling damage, as well as the constitutional right of citizens to a clean environment. So did the Dallas City Council, which the week before enacted a restrictive zoning ordinance that puts health and property before industry convenience. Then the Environmental Protection Agency’s Inspector General determined that the EPA was justified in its efforts to protect Texas residents from water contamination related to drilling.
October 31, 2013
From the very beginning of the shale gas and oil boom, water use and pollution rose to the top of key concerns. Maybe it’s because it takes millions of gallons just to frack a well. Or the special exemptions industry enjoys from the Safe Drinking Water and Clean Water Acts. The era of climate change, when long droughts and intense floods highlight drilling’s impact. And the tens of thousands of rivers and streams nationwide that are already impaired.
So it’s no wonder that questions are being asked—by advocates, communities, researchers, and even industry analysts—about the “energy-water nexus.” This week, we got some answers with the release of a new report by researchers at Downstream Strategies and San Jose State University. Developed in collaboration with Earthworks, the report provides the most comprehensive investigation to date of water used and waste generated by Marcellus Shale gas operations in West Virginia and Pennsylvania, as well as where it all ends up.