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Known carcinogens used in 34% of reported fracking operations in 2011-2012

Amy Mall

Posted June 18, 2013

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A recent analysis from SkyTruth has found that cancer-causing chemicals were used in about a third of fracking operations reported to FracFocus over a 21-month period in 2011 and 2012. The SkyTruth analysis reviewed more than 27,000 reports. The three most common carcinogens used in fracking were formaldehyde, naphthalene, and benzyl chloride. Check out the SkyTruth post for more details.

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Gerald QuindryJun 19 2013 02:18 PM

Only 34 percent? Seems low. Here's a thought experiment for you. Imagine your home was subject to the same type of inventory for carcinogens as those hydraulic fracturing sites. Would the typical home be carcinogen-free? Beer, wine, peanut butter, coffee, tea, soda, many pharmaceuticals, anti-wrinkle creams, and even tap water contain carcinogens in small amounts. Give me a few minutes, and a competent chemist, and I can find carcinogens in virtually any household.

What is missing in this post, and the underlying "report" is a discussion of relative hazard (or lack thereof). Does it matter that hydraulic fracturing uses carcinogenic chemicals? Are people exposed? Does the risk outweigh the benefit? Without those kinds of information, a simple "34 percent" is meaningless.

David WestJun 19 2013 04:45 PM

This article demonstrates the absence of intellectual rigor I often find in those driven by emotion, not rational thought.

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