The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Letters to the Editor

November 8, 2013

DEC records show frack contamination

Kimberly Moore’s Oct. 31 letter in The Daily Star asserts that there are no “documented cases of contamination to water by hydrofracking,”

Indeed, in its 2008 PowerPoint presentation, the DEC’s Division of Mineral Resources made the same claim that in “all oil and gas states surveyed ... not one instance of drinking water contamination in over one million frac (sic) jobs.” Furthermore, Division Director Bradley J. Field Field repeatedly said that New York’s 75,000 existing oil and gas wells had been drilled without incident. At a public meeting in Liberty, he casually dismissed a drilling accident in Brookfield, Madison County, as where “a bit got stuck and muddied up a bunch of water wells.”

But records show the drilling accident completely destroyed some water wells and left others unusable for months. Walter Hang of Toxics Targeting, an Ithaca firm that offers information on contaminated sites in the state, used the Freedom of Information Act to check the DEC’s own records, and he found “more than 270 incidents involving drill rig fires, explosions, homes evacuated due to gas drilling hazards, polluted water supply wells, gas drilling wastewater spills and various other oil/gas releases that had not been cleaned up.”

Robert H. Boyle


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