Garrett County and Natural Gas - Risks and Benefits

A selection of categorized links to allow one to assess the risks and benefits of gas development in Garrett Conty.

Garrett County Montage

Health Impacts

Studies and reports on the health effects of short term and long term hazards associated with gas development

- 1020 - [September 10, 2014] - YaleNews, NA - "More health symptoms reported near ‘fracking’ natural gas extraction"
"A Yale-led study has found a greater prevalence of health symptoms reported among residents living close to natural gas wells, including those drilled by hydraulic fracturing.
The researchers conducted a random survey of 492 people in 180 households with ground-fed water wells in southwestern Pennsylvania, where natural gas extraction activity is significant. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, there were 624 active natural gas wells in the survey area. Of those, 95% produce gas via hydraulic fracturing.
paragrapg: he researchers compared proximity of gas wells to the frequency of self-reported skin, respiratory, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and neurological symptoms over the past year. The environmental health survey was general and did not ask specific questions about natural gas extraction, or fracking, in the area."
- 1071 - [July 2014] - Maryland Marcellus Shale Public Health Study, Maryland Institute for Applied Environmental Health - School of Public Health University of Maryland, College Park - "Final Report - Potential Public Health Impacts of Natural gas Development and Production in the Marcellus Shale in Western Maryland"
"The baseline health assessment examined demographics, potential vulnerable populations, a wide range of health indicators, social determinants of health, and healthcare infrastructure in Garrett and Allegany counties. The impact assessment is based on available data from other states with ongoing UNGDP regarding exposure and health outcomes and on epidemiological and toxicologic data from other contexts that are relevant to potential UNGDP related exposures."
- 1074 - [November 17, 2014] - Chesapeake Physicians for Social Responsibility,, Gina Angiola - "RE - Comments on the draft Assessment of Risks from Unconventional Gas Well Development in the"
"We believe that the deep structural flaws in this risk assessment result in a significant underestimation of the risks to Maryland residents from unconventional gas development and production. The risk assessment contains incorrect assumptions and omissions of pertinent information that lead to falsely low risk levels being reported. For example, air emissions are not fully catalogued or analyzed, yet form one of the primary sources of risk to public health and the environment. The regular purging and venting of wells, pipelines and equipment, a major risk leading the adverse health effects from human exposure, is not discussed in this risk assessment. "
- 1102 - [October 30, 2014] - Environmental Health, Gregg P Macey, Ruth Breech, Mark Chernaik, Caroline Cox, Denny Larson, Deb Thomas and David O Carpenter - "Air concentrations of volatile compounds near oil and gas production: a community-based exploratory study."
"Horizontal drilling, hydraulic fracturing, and other drilling and well stimulation technologies are now used widely in the United States and increasingly in other countries. They enable increases in oil and gas production, but there has been inadequate attention to human health impacts. Air quality near oil and gas operations is an under-explored human health concern for five reasons: (1) prior focus on threats to water quality; (2) an evolving understanding of contributions of certain oil and gas production processes to air quality; (3) limited state air quality monitoring networks; (4) significant variability in air emissions and concentrations; and (5) air quality research that misses impacts important to residents. Preliminary research suggests that volatile compounds, including hazardous air pollutants, are of potential concern. This study differs from prior research in its use of a community-based process to identify sampling locations. Through this approach, we determine concentrations of volatile compounds in air near operations that reflect community concerns and point to the need for more fine-grained and frequent monitoring at points along the production life cycle.
Levels of eight volatile chemicals exceeded federal guidelines under several operational circumstances. Benzene, formaldehyde, and hydrogen sulfide were the most common compounds to exceed acute and other health-based risk levels.
Air concentrations of potentially dangerous compounds and chemical mixtures are frequently present near oil and gas production sites. Community-based research can provide an important supplement to state air quality monitoring programs."
- 1103 - [October 2014] - coming clean, coming clean - "Warning Signs: Toxic Air Pollution Identified at Oil and Gas Sites"
"Oil and gas production uses hundreds of toxic chemicals that are emitted directly or escape into the air, exposing residents, workers and animals.
In 2012, twelve community groups in 6 states (Arkansas, Colorado, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wyoming), with support from a team of national organizations and experts, decided to test the air near oil and gas development sites located in their communities.
Although the monitoring data does not conclusively prove a link between specific chemicals and the health symptoms reported by community residents, the stark findings are enough to warrant a precautionary approach to regulation of oil and gas activities. "
- 1104 - [October 2014] - Coming Clean and Global Community Monitor, Ruth Breech, Caroline Cox, Elizabeth Crowe, Jessica Hendricks and Denny Larson - "Warning Signs - Toxic Air Pollution Identified at Oil and Gas Development Sites"
"This report is a joint effort of Coming Clean and Global Community Monitor, in collaboration with local and national nonprofit organizations and community groups.
This report provides results from community air monitoring in six states near oil and gas wells and other sites associated with oil and gas production processes, particularly hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Monitoring results revealed the presence of an array of airborne hazardous chemicals at levels higher than federal health and safety standards—in some cases, in concentrations that pose an immediate health threat to people. "
- 1139 - [March 5, 2014] - ProPublica - Journalism in the Public Interest, Naveena Sadasivam - "Drilling for Certainty: The Latest in Fracking Health Studies"
"For years, environmentalists and the gas drilling industry have been in a pitched battle over the possible health implications of hydro fracking. But to a great extent, the debate — as well as the emerging lawsuits and the various proposed regulations in numerous states — has been hampered by a shortage of science."
- 1142 - [January 4, 2014] - BloombergView, Mark Whitehouse - "Study Shows Fracking Is Bad for Babies"
"The energy industry has long insisted that hydraulic fracking -- the practice of fracturing rock to extract gas and oil deep beneath the earth's surface -- is safe for people who live nearby. New research suggests this is not true for some of the most vulnerable humans: newborn infants.
...the researchers -- Janet Currie of Princeton University, Katherine Meckel of Columbia University, and John Deutch and Michael Greenstone of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology...found that proximity to fracking increased the likelihood of low birth weight by more than half, from about 5.6 percent to more than 9 percent. The chances of a low Apgar score, a summary measure of the health of newborn children, roughly doubled, to more than 5 percent.
Much of the available research has been sponsored either by the energy industry or by its critics. Independent studies have found evidence of well-water contamination in areas close to fracking activity. "
- 1162 - [December 16, 2013] - School of Medicine - University of Missouri Health System, Christopher D. Kassotis, Donald E. Tillitt, J. Wade Davis, Annette M. Hormann, and Susan C. Nagel - "Estrogen and Androgen Receptor Activities of Hydraulic Fracturing Chemicals and Surface and Ground Water in a Drilling-Dense Region"
"The rapid rise in natural gas extraction utilizing hydraulic fracturing increases the potential for contamination of surface and ground water from chemicals used throughout the process. Hundreds of products containing more than 750 chemicals and components are potentially used throughout the extraction process, including over one hundred known or suspected endocrine disrupting chemicals. We hypothesized that a selected subset of chemicals used in natural gas drilling operations and also surface and ground water samples collected in a drilling-dense region of Garfield County, CO would exhibit estrogen and androgen receptor activities. Water samples were collected, solid-phase extracted,and measured for estrogen and androgen receptor activities using reporter gene assays in human cell lines. Of the 39 unique water samples, 89%, 41%, 12%, and46% exhibited estrogenic, anti-estrogenic, androgenic, and anti-androgenic activities, respectively. Testing of a subset of natural gas drilling chemicals revealed novel anti-estrogenic, novel anti-androgenic, and limited estrogenic activities. The Colorado River, the drainage basin for this region, exhibited moderate levels of estrogenic, anti-estrogenic, and anti-androgenic activities, suggesting that higher localized activity at sites with known natural gas related spills surrounding the river might be contributing to the multiple receptor activities observed in this water source. The majority of water samples collected from sites in a drilling-dense region of Colorado exhibited more estrogenic, anti-estrogenic, or anti-androgenic activities than reference sites with limited nearby drilling operations. Our data suggest that natural gas drilling operations may result in elevated EDC activity in surface and ground water."
- 1178 - [January 8, 2015] - Marcellus.com, Danielle Wente | Shale Plays Media - "Round two: Marcellus shale vs. health and health care"
"The Center for Rural Pennsylvania authorized another Marcellus Shale Impacts study that will take a second look at health and health care.
The main concern and purpose of the study is to show the potential health effects that Marcellus Shale drilling and related development activities have on humans. It is believed that the various phases of drilling and development can affect human health differently. An example being some phases may directly impact human health, and other stages may effect human health indirectly."
- 1185 - [March 7, 2012] - CornellChronicle - Cornell University, Krishna Ramanujan - "Study suggests hydrofracking is killing farm animals, pets"
"A new report has found dozens of cases of illness, death and reproductive issues in cows, horses, goats, llamas, chickens, dogs, cats, fish and other wildlife, and humans. It says these conditions could be the result of exposure to gas drilling operations.
According to the study, recently published online and appearing soon in print, in New Solutions: A Journal of Environmental and Occupational Health Policy, making a direct link between death and illness is not possible due to incomplete testing, proprietary secrecy from gas drilling companies regarding the chemicals used in hydrofracking, and non-disclosure agreements that seal testimony and evidence when lawsuits are settled."
- 1187 - [March 2012] - NEW SOLUTIONS, Vol. 22(1) 51-77, 2012, MICHELLE BAMBERGER and ROBERT E. OSWALD - "IMPACTS OF GAS DRILLING ON HUMAN AND ANIMAL HEALTH"
"Environmental concerns surrounding drilling for gas are intense due to expansion of shale gas drilling operations. Controversy surrounding the impact of drilling on air and water quality has pitted industry and lease- holders against individuals and groups concerned with environmental protection and public health. Because animals often are exposed continually to air, soil, and groundwater and have more frequent reproductive cycles, animals can be used as sentinels to monitor impacts to human health. This study involved interviews with animal owners who live near gas drilling operations. The findings illustrate which aspects of the drilling process may lead to health problems and suggest modifications that would lessen but not eliminate impacts. Complete evidence regarding health impacts of gas drilling cannot be obtained due to incomplete testing and disclosure of chemicals, and nondisclosure agreements. Without rigorous scientific studies, the gas drilling boom sweeping the world will remain an uncontrolled health experiment on an enormous scale."
- 1244 - [NA] - Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, University of Maryland Public Health Report - "Marcellus Shale and Public Health"
"The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene contracted with the University of Maryland School of Public Health, Institute for Applied Environmental Health (MIAEH) to study the potential public health impacts of natural gas development and production in the Marcellus Shale in Western Maryland. This project is part of Governor O'Malley's Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative and was funded by the State. The results of this independent study were presented on June 28, 2014 at Garrett Community College, and will be presented to the Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative Advisory Commission at its August 18, 2014 meeting. Representatives of MIAEH will attend the Commission's September 15, 2014 to answer questions."
- 1261 - [NA] - NA, Concerned Health Officials in New York - "Compendiun of Scinetific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking (Unconvential Oil and Gas Extraction)"
"Directional drilling combined with high-volume hydraulic fracturing and clustered multi-well pads are recently combined technologies for extracting oil and natural gas from shale bedrock. As this unconventional extraction method (collectively known as “fracking”) has pushed into more densely populated areas of the United States, and as fracking operations have increased in frequency and intensity, a significant body of evidence has emerged to demonstrate that these activities are inherently dangerous to people and their communities. Risks include adverse impacts on water, air, agriculture, public health and safety, property values, climate stability and economic vitality.
The Compendium is a fully referenced compilation of the significant body of scientific, medical, and journalistic findings demonstrating risks and harms of fracking. Organized to be accessible to public officials, researchers, journalists and the public at large, the Compendium succinctly summarizes key studies and other findings relevant to the ongoing public debate about unconventional methods of oil and gas extraction. "
- 1265 - [February 7, 2015] - Marcellus.com, Danielle Wente | Shale Plays Media - "Marcellus health effects may be monitored"
"A bill that would create an advisory panel to oversee potential public health effects caused by drilling in the Marcellus Shale has been reintroduced to the state Senate.
In 2013, Senate President Pro Tem Joe Scarnati first introduced Senate Bill 375. Today, he reintroduced the bill that would form a nine person advisory panel that would meet with experts twice a year to discuss and analyze the health effects surrounding the removal of natural gas."
- 1290 - [June 3, 2013] - The Marcellus Effect, The Marcellus Effect - "Colorado Doctor Uses Biomonitoring to Show Drilling Impacts"
" Can blood tests show the impacts of gas and oil drilling? That’s a question one Colorado doctor hopes to answer. Dr. John Hughes, of Aspen Integrative Medicine recently tested the blood of several Carbondale residents, according to a recent article in the Aspen Daily News. He tested ten people for a range of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) including benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene – compounds found in air samples in many drilling areas. His preliminary results found low levels of xylene but, as reporter Nelson Harvey puts it, “no VOC concentrations above federal health thresholds”....
Hughes compared the Carbondale samples with blood samples from ten residents in Erie, where close to 17,000 gas wells have already been drilled. He found high levels of ethylbenzene – around 118 parts per billion (ppb) – in the blood of nine Erie test subjects. All of those residents lived between 300 and 1,800 feet from gas wells, and the highest levels ethylbenzene that Hughes detected was found in people living closest to wells.drilling."
- 1295 - [NA] - ehp - Environmental Health Perspectives, Bernard D. Goldstein, Jill Kriesky, and Barbara Pavliakova - "Missing from the Table: Role of the Environmental Public Health Community in Governmental Advisory Commissions Related to Marcellus Shale Drilling"
"Despite recognition of the environmental public health concerns related to drilling in the Marcellus Shale, neither state nor national advisory committees selected to respond to these concerns contained recognizable environmental public health expertise."
- 1307 - [May 16, 2012] - Energy In Depth - Mountain States, Steve Everley - "*UPDATE IV* Eight Worst Inputs Used in Colorado Health Study"
"The Colorado School of Public Health’s paper on hypothetical future health impacts of natural gas development scored an nine-minute profile yesterday on NPR. That’s practically an eternity in broadcast journalism, more than enough time for a detailed discussion on both the CSPH’s conclusions and the many criticisms of their work.
Unfortunately, NPR failed its audience. Reporter Elizabeth Shogren accepted just about everything the CSPH said at face value, and only briefly mentions that its findings have been challenged by local officials and scientists within the industry. The segment conveniently fails to mention why those challenges were made, and what the substance of those challenges were – effectively denying NPR’s listeners a full account of the controversy."
- 1332 - [February 11, 2015] - Penn Live * The Patriot-News, Matt Miller - "Court denies appeal by worker who claimed fracking chemicals blinded him"
"A Commonwealth Court panel has refused to award workers' compensation benefits to a natural gas industry employee who claimed he was partially blinded by accidental exposure to fracking chemicals.
The state judges made that call Wednesday by upholding a workers' compensation judge's decision that James Dershem had not proven his vision problems were related to a mishap at a gas drilling site.
Dershem, a supervisor for a firm that transports water used in the hydraulic fracturing process for the extraction of gas from Marcellus Shale formations, claimed he began losing his vision after being sprayed in both eyes with chemicals from a fracking chemical storage tank "
- 1342 - [NA] - Concerned Health Professionals of NY, Concerned Health Professionals of NY - "Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking (Unconventionel Gas and Oi Extraction)"
"Directional drilling combined with high-volume hydraulic fracturing and clustered multi-well pads are recently combined technologies for extracting oil and natural gas from shale bedrock. As this unconventional extraction method (collectively known as “fracking”) has pushed into more densely populated areas of the United States, and as fracking operations have increased in frequency and intensity, a significant body of evidence has emerged to demonstrate that these activities are inherently dangerous to people and their communities. Risks include adverse impacts on water, air, agriculture, public health and safety, property values, climate stability and economic vitality.
The Compendium is a fully referenced compilation of the significant body of scientific, medical, and journalistic findings demonstrating risks and harms of fracking. Organized to be accessible to public officials, researchers, journalists and the public at large, the Compendium succinctly summarizes key studies and other findings relevant to the ongoing public debate about unconventional methods of oil and gas extraction. ..."
- 1346 - [December 11, 2014] - Concerned Health Professionals of NY, Concerned Health Professionals of NY - "Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking (Unconventional gas and oil Extraction)"
"The Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking (the Compendium) is a fully-referenced compilation of the evidence for the risks and harms of fracking that brings together findings from the scientific and medical literature, government and industry rep orts, and journalistic investigation. It is a public, open-access document that is housed on the website of Concerned Health Professionals of New York ( www.concernedhealthny.org ). Since its release in July 2014, it has been used and referenced all over the world"
- 1357 - [December 2014] - New York State Department of Public Health, New York State Department of Public Health - "A Public Health Review of High Volume Hydrualic Fracturing for Shale Gas Development"
"The New York State Department of Health (DOH) is charged with protecting the public health of New Yorkers. In assessing whether public health would be adequately protected from a complex activity such as high volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF), a guarantee of abso lute safety is not required. However, at a minimum, there must be sufficient information to understand what the likely public health risks will be. Currently, that information is insufficient."
- 1410 - [NA] - eph | Environmental Health Perspectives Volume 122 | Issue 2 | February 2014, Valerie J. Brown - "Radionuclides in Fracking Wastewater: Managing a Toxic Blend"
"To date the drilling industry and regulators have considered the risk posed to workers and the public by radioactive waste to be minor. In Pennsylvania, Lisa Kasianowitz, an information specialist with the state Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP), says there is currently nothing to “indicate the public or workers face any health risk from exposure to radiation from these materials.” But given the wide gaps in the data, this is cold comfort to many in the public health community."
- 1461 - [March 9, 2015] - The nation - Investigates progress Daily, Michael Chen - "Are Fracking Workers Being Poisoned on the Job?"
"Last week's Republican election victories will set the stage for more stagnation in Washington, but might also grease the skids for some of the most controversial energy ventures at ground zero in the climate change debate: the long-stalled Keystone XL Pipeline project, and the booming hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," industry. But one thing that might put the brakes on the dirty fuel rush is the mounting research evidence linking oil and gas extraction to massive health risks for workers and communities."
- 1462 - [November 10, 2014] - Environmental Health, Gregg P Macey, Ruth Breech, Mark Chernaik, Caroline Cox, Denny Larson, Deb Thomas and David O Carpenter - "Air concentrations of volatile compounds near oil and gas production: a community-based exploratory study"
"Horizontal drilling, hydraulic fracturing, and other drilling and well stimulation technologies are now used widely in the United States and increasingly in other countries. They enable increases in oil and gas production, but there has been inadequate attention to human health impacts. Air quality near oil and gas operations is an under-explored human health concern for five reasons: (1) prior focus on threats to water quality; (2) an evolving understanding of contributions of certain oil and gas production processes to air quality; (3) limited state air quality monitoring networks; (4) significant variability in air emissions and concentrations; and (5) air quality research that misses impacts important to residents. Preliminary research suggests that volatile compounds, including hazardous air pollutants, are of potential concern. This study differs from prior research in its use of a community-based process to identify sampling locations. Through this approach, we determine concentrations of volatile compounds in air near operations that reflect community concerns and point to the need for more fine-grained and frequent monitoring at points along the production life cycle."
- 1463 - [October 30, 2014] - The Independent, Steve Connor - "'Dangerously high' levels of airborne carcinogens found at US fracking sites"
"Dangerously high levels of cancer-causing chemicals have been discovered in the air around “fracking” sites in the United States - highlighting the need for tougher regulations to control oil and gas extraction in Britain, scientists said.
Levels of benzene, formaldehyde and hydrogen sulphide were many times above the US’s air pollution limits and were detected within residential areas near to fracking wells drilled across five different states, the researchers said."
- 1464 - [October 30, 2014] - timesunion.com, Brian Nearing - "Study finds toxic carcinogen risk"
"Tests of air around homes near natural gas drilling wells and other production equipment in five states found potentially carcinogenic levels of chemicals, according to a study that involved a researcher from the University at Albany.
The study was published Thursday in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Health. It examined air pollution around gas production sites in Pennsylvania, where hydrofracking has boomed for seven years, as well as Wyoming, Arkansas, Colorado and Ohio."
- 1465 - [October 30, 2014] - Institute for Health and the Environment, University at Albany, David O. Carpenter, MD - "Concerning Zoning and Land Use Request to Allow Hydraulic Fracturing"
"For all of these reasons I conclude that a zoning ordinance that allows unconventional deep shale gas development to occur in over ninety percent (90%) of Middlesex Township, including in close proximity to schools and residences, is at the present time and with current technology not protective of the public health, safety and welfare. Residents and those who regularly visit the Township for work or school will be vulnerable to exposures to chemicals in the air and water. These chemicals will also get in food sources, especially those raised in local farms and gardens, and the exposure will result in increases in rates of cancer, nervous and respiratory system effects, as well as an overall reduction in the quality of life. A similar conclusion was reached after extensive review by the New York State Department of Health (2014), which resulted in a decision to prohibit fracking throughout New York State. Much more research is needed to improve the safety of unconventional deep shale gas extraction and perhaps someday technical advances will allow extraction of shale gas in a fashion that does not cause significant threats to human health. However, that is not the case today. For the sake of the health of the residents of Middlesex Township, especially its children, zoning a community so that unconventional deep shale gas development can occur within less than two miles of schools and close to significant residential development poses a particularly significant public health risk."
- 1466 - [January 14, 2015] - U.S.News & World Report, Alan Neuhauser - "Respiratory, Skin Problems Soar Near Gas Wells, Study Says"
"Residents living near active natural gas wells in Pennsylvania suffer far more allergies, nose bleeds, skin rashes, and other respiratory and skin conditions than people living further away, a new survey has found.
Within 1 kilometer of a gas well, researchers say, residents had up to twice the rate of health problems per person compared to those who lived 2 kilometers away or further."
- 1515 - [May 24, 2014] - University of Maryland, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, School of Public Health - "Public Health Study of Fracking to Inform Md. Policy Decisions"
"A School of Public Health report on the potential public health impacts if fracking is allowed in Maryland, released in August, has been the focus of a series of recent forums to discuss the implications of its findings and to inform state decision-makers.
Commissioned by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the Maryland Department of the Environment, the report was produced by UMD public health and environmental justice experts, with input from residents of Maryland’s Garrett and Allegany counties, which hold the untapped natural gas reserves, and a variety of other stakeholders. It is the first report of its kind to be used in guiding state policy decisions about whether and how unconventional natural gas development (UNGD) should take place."
- 1557 - [February 22, 2015] - Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences, Penn State Extension - "The Impact of Marcellus Shale Development on Health and Health Care"
"The Center for Rural Pennsylvania commissioned a Marcellus Shale Impacts study, the second looking at health and health care.
Little is known about the potential human health effects of Marcellus Shale drilling and related development activities. It is likely that different phases of drilling and development may affect human health differently; some aspects of drilling may impact health directly, and other health effects may be indirect."
- 1558 - [January 4, 2015] - USA Today, Wendy Koch - "People near 'fracking' wells report health woes"
"People living near natural-gas wells were more than twice as likely to report upper-respiratory and skin problems than those farther away, says a major study Wednesday on the potential health effects of fracking.
Nearly two of every five, or 39%, of those living less than a kilometer (or two-thirds of a mile) from a well reported upper respiratory symptoms, compared to 18% living more than 2 kilometers away, according to a Yale University-led random survey of 492 people in 180 households with ground-fed water wells in southwestern Pennsylvania.
The disparity was even greater for skin irritation. While 13% of those within a kilometer of a well said they had rashes and other skin symptoms, only 3% of those beyond 2 kilometers said the same."
- 1568 - [NA] - NewsWeek - RawStory, Zoë Schlanger - "Utah confirms spike in infant deaths in oil and gas boomtown, but the state won’t bother finding out why"
"Donna Young was right. In 2013, more infants died in Vernal, Utah, than was normal for the area.
Last year, Young, who has been delivering babies as a midwife for nearly two decades, noticed several fresh graves for infants in the cemetery in her tiny city. She sensed that something wasn’t right. She didn’t have access to official death records, so she started combing through obituaries online."
- 1577 - [December 8, 2014] - University of maryland | School of Public Health, UofM School of Public Health - "Public Health Study of Fracking to Inform Md. Policy Decisions"
"A School of Public Health report on the potential public health impacts if fracking is allowed in Maryland, released in August, has been the focus of a series of recent forums to discuss the implications of its findings and to inform state decision-makers."
- 1602 - [NA] - Environmental Health, Gregg P Macey, Ruth Breech, Mark Chernaik, Caroline Cox, Denny Larson, Deb Thomas and David O Carpenter - "Air concentrations of volatile compounds near oil and gas production: a community-based exploratory study"
"Levels of eight volatile chemicals exceeded federal guidelines under several operational circumstances. Benzene, formaldehyde, and hydrogen sulfide were the most common compounds to exceed acute and other health-based risk levels.
ir concentrations of potentially dangerous compounds and chemical mixtures are frequently present near oil and gas production sites. Community-based research can provide an important supplement to state air quality monitoring programs. "
- 1623 - [July, 2013] - OEN - OpEnd News.com, Dory Hippauf - "Fracks in the Medical Gag"
"One of more controversial provisions of Pennsylvania's ACT 13 is the inclusion of what has become known as the Medical Gag Rule.
Chemical composition, with the exception of those deemed as "trade secrets" are supposed to be listed on a web site called FracFocus.org. Pennsylvania is 1 of 11 states which require drillers to use FracFocus for report purposes.
In the event of an emergency and/or the need to treat a patient suspected of being exposed to the "fracking" chemicals, Medical Professionals and Emergency Responders need to know what chemicals may be involved, including those deemed as "trade secrets". Act 13 contains language based on Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (CCOGCC) regulations for chemical disclosure. "
- 1627 - [March 30, 2015] - Institute for Health and the Environment, University at Albany, Rensselaer, New York, Gregg P Macey, Ruth Breech, Mark Chernaik, Caroline Cox, Denny Larson, Deb Thomas and David O Carpenter - "Air concentrations of volatile compounds near oil and gas production: a community-based exploratory study"
"Community-based monitoring near unconventional oil and gas operations demonstrates elevations in concentrations of hazardous air pollutants under a range of circumstances. Of special concern are high concentrations of benzene, hydrogen sulfide, and formaldehyde, as well as chemical mixtures linked to operations with observed impacts to resident quality of life."
- 1669 - [April 2014] - The Baltimore Sun, Sharelines - "Study links radon levels in Pennsylvania homes to fracking"
"A new study by Johns Hopkins researchers links elevated levels of radioactive radon in Pennsylvania homes to the flurry of natural gas wells drilled across the state using the controversial technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking."
In a paper published online Thursday in Environmental Health Perspectives, researchers with Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health reported that radon levels in Pennsylvania homes have been on the rise since 2004, with the greatest increases in counties with the most wells drilled."
- 1682 - [April 15, 2015] - University of Maryland, School of Public Health, School of Public Health - "Public Health Study of Fracking to Inform Md. Policy Decisions"
"A School of Public Health report on the potential public health impacts if fracking is allowed in Maryland, released in August, has been the focus of a series of recent forums to discuss the implications of its findings and to inform state decision-makers.
Commissioned by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the Maryland Department of the Environment, the report was produced by UMD public health and environmental justice experts, with input from residents of Maryland’s Garrett and Allegany counties, which hold the untapped natural gas reserves, and a variety of other stakeholders. It is the first report of its kind to be used in guiding state policy decisions about whether and how unconventional natural gas development (UNGD) should take place."
- 1686 - [April 16, 2015] - Earthworks, Earthworks - "Public health and gas development - Where oil and gas development goes, health problems often follow."
" Yet industry representatives and policymakers seeking to expand drilling often dismiss claims of health impacts as “personal anecdotes” and isolated incidents.
The primary reasons that public health risks posed by increasing gas development can be disputed:
- A lack of established science. Widespread scientific investigation has only recently begun to investigate the relationship between gas development and public health impacts.
- State governments, which are largely responsible for protecting the public from irresponsible oil and gas development, have until recently refused to consider the issue.
- Even as they have become widespread, individual reports of health problems in the gas patch have been continually dismissed as anecdotal by industry and government."
- 1696 - [April 20, 2015] - ehp | Environmental health Perspectives, Joan A. Casey, Elizabeth L. Ogburn, Sara G. Rasmussen, Jennifer K. Irving, Jonathan Pollak, Paul A. Locke, and Brian S. Schwartz - "Predictors of Indoor Radon Concentrations in Pennsylvania, 1989–2013"
"Radon is the second - leading cause of lung cancer worldwide . Most indoor exposure occurs by diffusion of soil gas. Radon is also found in well water, natural gas and ambient air. Pennsylvania has high indoor radon concentrations; buildings are often tested during real estate transactions with results reported to the Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP).
Using first floor and basement indoor radon results reported to the PADEP between 1987 - 2013, we evaluated associations of radon concentrations (ln-transformed) with geology, water source, building characteristics, season, weather, community socioeconomic status, community type and unconventional natural gas development measures based on drilled and producing wells."
- 1698 - [NA] - The Atlantic, Nicolas St. Fleur - "The Alarming Research Behind New York's Fracking Ban"
"The battle over untapped natural gas in New York State appears to have reached its end. Following an extensive public health review of hydraulic fracturing, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a complete ban on the oil and natural gas harvesting practice in the state on Wednesday."
- 1716 - [November, 2013] - University of Maryland, School of Public Health, Donald Milton, Amir Sapkota, Sacoby Wilson, Chengsheng Jiang, Laura Dalemarre, Laura Dalemarre and Meleah Boyle. - "Potential Public Health Impacts of Natural Gas Development and Production in the Marcellus Shale in Western Maryland"
"The MOU specified that the “project is designed to provide a baseline assessment of current regional population health, an assessment of potential public health impacts, and possible adaptive and public health mitigation strategies in the event that natural gas extraction takes place within Maryland’s Marcellus Shale resource.” In particular, the project is not designed to make recommendation s about whether or when to allow unconventional natural gas development and production (UNGDP) in Maryland. Rather this study is designed to inform decisions by clearly describing the risks and potential public health responses."
- 1737 - [winter 2012] - Newsweek, Zoë Schlanger - "Utah Confirms Spike in Infant Deaths in Oil and Gas Boomtown After Midwife Sounds Alarm"
"Donna Young was right. In 2013, more infants died in Vernal, Utah, than was normal for the area.
Last year, Young, who has been delivering babies as a midwife for nearly two decades, noticed several fresh graves for infants in the cemetery in her tiny city. She sensed that something wasn’t right. She didn’t have access to official death records, so she started combing through obituaries online."
- 1876 - [January 10, 2015] - NWR, Mark Plummer, Nature World Report - "Fracking Shown to Emit Compounds Implicated In Cancer and Respiratory Conditions"
"According to researchers from Oregon State University and the University of Cincinnati, fracking releases compounds known as Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH’s). These compounds are, according to researchers, released in quantities which far exceed the maximum permissible lifetime limits set down by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)."
- 1924 - [May 19, 2015] - Elite Daily, John Haltiwanger in Wellness - "People Who Appreciate Nature Are Happier, Healthier And More Innovative"
"There’s nothing quite like being deep in a forest, completely separated from the touch of humankind.
It provides an inexplicable sense of tranquil awareness.
The only sounds are those of your own footsteps, the wind, rustling trees and the movements of the creatures who call the wild home.
But the fact of the matter is that too many of us rarely get to experience this. More and more people, particularly Millennials, are moving into cities and away from nature."
- 1928 - [February 21, 2015] - PSE Health Energy, Jake Hays, Seth B.C. Shonkoff - "Toward an understanding of the environmental and public health impacts of shale gas development: an analysis of the peer-reviewed scientific literature, 2009-2014"
"In this analysis, we reviewed the direction of findings among papers that assessed the association between shale and tight gas development and air, water, and public health impacts. In each subject area, we found that the majority of studies indicated negative impacts of shale and/or tight gas development on the outcome of interest...."
- 1978 - [December 2013] - PowerSource - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Don Hopey / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - "American Medical Association blasts secret shale records"
"Group calls for public disclosure, expanded water monitoring.
The American Medical Association, citing growing concerns about monitoring and tracking long-term human health impacts caused by shale gas development, is calling for the public disclosure of all chemicals used in the extraction technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking.”"
- 1980 - [June 12, 2015] - The Baltimore Sun, Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun - "UM study warns of health impacts from fracking"
"A University of Maryland study warns that without adequate safeguards, drilling for natural gas using hydraulic fracturing could harm the health of residents, workers and communities in Western Maryland."
- 1981 - [June 12, 2015] - Frack Free Colorado, Frack Free Colorado - "Colorado's Affected People"
"The Colorado Oil and Gas Association (COGA), the oil and gas industry and our Govorner John Hickenlooper assert that drilling for natural gas is safe and the methods used and current regulations in Colorado are sufficient.
The testimonies demonstrate an industry that is careless and whose costs are the greatest imaginable.
A list of stories of people with ailments."
- 1982 - [August 18, 2014] - Rodale's OrganicLife, Sue Smith-Heavenrich - "Caught in the Drill Zone"
"A growing natural-gas industry poses toxic challenges for organic farmers and anyone else living near a fracking operation.
Before Carolyn Knapp signed a gas lease, she questioned the industry representatives as to its effect on her organic dairy certification. That was 7 years ago. Now, nine wells have been drilled within 2 miles of her Bradford County, Pennsylvania, farm and the water tastes so bad at times that her cows won’t drink it.
Neither will her husband."
- 1983 - [NA] - Protecting Our Waters, Iris Marie Bloom - "Shale Gas Drilling Makes People Sick in More Ways Than One"
"Pain is escalating in shale drilling areas across Pennsylvania, from southwest to northeast, but at least one reporter is revealing the symptoms Pennsylvania doctors are finding themselves unable to treat in shale country. Susan Phillips’ report, “A Link Between Heavy Drilling and Illness? Doctors Search for Solid Answers,” is powerful and disturbing. Phillips reports on both the symptoms — face lesions, headaches, nausea — residents in heavy drilling areas are suffering, and on the lab results showing residents may be exposed to benzene, toluene, or other substances."
- 1994 - [November 9, 2011] - 90.5 WESA - Pittsburgh's NPR News Station, Erica Beras - "Study Links Proximity To Fracking Sites With Low Birth Weight"
"Pregnant women who live close to fracking sites are more likely to have babies with lower birth weights, according to a study conducted by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.
Researchers used public records to cross-reference the proximity of gas wells to health information for 15,451 newborns in Washington, Westmoreland and Butler counties born between 2007 and 2010. "
- 1999 - [May 21, 2015] - The Center for Healthy Environments and Communities, Bernard D. Goldstein - "Potential Health Effects of Marcellus Shale Activities: The Need for Public Health Surveillance"
"Every location where natural gas is extracted is different. Pennsylvania differs from other heavily extracted regions in its geology; surface and subsurface water flows; past subsurface perturbations; weather; ecosystems; population density and demography, etc. Extraction procedures are evolving; and the sensitivity of analytical techniques to detect contaminants is increasing.
We can be certain that unforeseen threats to human health will be detected."
- 2001 - [June 2015] - TXsharon's Bluedaze, TXsharon - "Physicians find increase in lesions that won’t heal near gas drilling and fracking"
"Amy Paré is a plastic surgeon in Washington County, south of Pittsburgh, where over 500 wells have been drilled thus far. Paré specializes in cosmetic procedures — lifts and tucks, and breast implants. Two years ago, Paré started seeing patients with an unusual condition.
“We started to have more patients that would have open areas or recalcitrant lesions, that bled, ulcerated, didn’t quite heal. And usually they’re on your face,” she said."
- 2003 - [March 29, 2012] - Pittsburgh Business Times, Kris B. Mamula - Pittsburgh Business Times - "Marcellus Shale Coalition criticizes Pitt study on low birth-weights"
"A Robinson Township-based natural gas industry trade group sharply criticized a University of Pittsburgh study released Wednesday, which linked low birth weight babies to the mothers’ proximity to gas well clusters.
The study “fails by virtually every measure to demonstrate basic and sound research principles,” according to a website response to the study by the Marcellus Shale Coalition. The findings were faulted as “funded by a deep-pocketed group with a long and clear record of financially supporting anti-shale activism.”"
- 2005 - [June 4, 2015] - PRWatch, Sara Jerving - "The Fracking Frenzy's Impact on Women"
"Hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," has generated widespread media attention this year. The process, which injects water and chemicals into the ground to release "natural" gas and oil from shale bedrock, has been shown to contribute significantly to air and water pollution and has even been linked to earthquakes. But little has been reported on the ways in which fracking may have unique impacts on women. Chemicals used in fracking have been linked to breast cancer and reproductive health problems and there have been reports of rises in crimes against women in some fracking "boom" towns, which have attracted itinerant workers with few ties to the community."
- 2011 - [April 26, 2009] - Montana State University, Joe Hoffman - "Potential Health and Environmental Effects of Hydrofracking in the Williston Basin, Montana"
"Hydrofracking is a controversial oil and gas extraction technique developed in the late 1940s to gain access to fossil energy deposits previously inaccessible to drilling operations. The process, "hydraulic fracturing", literally involves the smashing of rock with millions of gallons of water–along with sand and a undisclosed assortment of chemicals in order to bring gas to the surface."
- 2012 - [April 4, 2011] - NRDC - Natural Resources Defense Council, NRDC - "Unchecked FrackingThreatens Health, Water Supplies"
"Weak safeguards and inadequate oversight have allowed oil and gas producers to run roughshod over communities across the country with their extraction and production activities for too long, resulting in contaminated water supplies, dangerous air pollution, destroyed streams, and devastated landscapes. Our state and federal leaders have failed to hold them to account, leaving the American people unprotected. Many companies don't play by the few rules that do exist; and industry has used its political power at every turn to gain exemptions from environmental laws designed to protect our air and water."
- 2017 - [June 2015] - amednews.com, Alicia Gallegos - "Doctors fight "gag orders" over fracking chemicals"
"A physician's lawsuit over a Pennsylvania statute concerning chemicals used in natural gas drilling is the latest battle involving industrial disclosure laws.
When several unrelated patients visited McMurray, Pa.-based plastic surgeon Amy Paré, MD, she initially was unsure what to make of the bleeding, oozing legions covering their faces.
...Some doctors say the agreements amount to gag orders that interfere with their ability to treat patients and to share information freely with colleagues and medical researchers...."
- 2024 - [NA] - Zero Hedge, Tyler Durden - "Why Are Oil & Gas Workers Mysteriously Dying Across America?"
"In July of 2012, the mother of 21-year old Dustin Bergsing filed a wrongful-death suit in Yellowstone County District Court. Bergsing died on January 7 of that year — his first child was born just six weeks prior. The cause of death was hydrocarbon poisoning. More specifically, Bergsing died from inhaling fatal amounts of petroleum vapors after gauging a crude oil tank on a Marathon Oil site in Mandaree, North Dakota. Here is what happened (from a North Dakota Supreme Court apellee brief):"
- 2027 - [November 12, 2014] - PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center, Erika Staaf, John Rumpler, Elizabeth Ridlington and Travis Madsen - "The Spreading Shadow of the Shale Gas Boom. Fracking's Growing Proximity to Day Cares, Schools and Hospitals"
"The gas industry has projected drilling more than 60,000 new fracking wells into the Marcellus and Utica shales over the next two decades. Should this occur, gas extraction activity will move into even greater proximity to more vulnerable populations across the region. As there is currently no proof that drilling companies will operate without contaminating our drinking water, threatening our safety, damaging our forests and parks, and polluting our air, state and local governments should stop further fracking operations."