Turns out that “America’s clean burning abundant 100 year supply natural gas” is also a great way to gas people with carcinogenic benzene. Which provides work. For oncologists.
Benzene is a “byproduct” of oil and gas production. Like other “byproducts” such as radon, it is normally vented at the drilling site with the raw gas or vented at the gas processing plant – after it is separated from the methane, propane, butane and ethane. It’s invisible, but the venting can be seen with an infrared camera. Once in the air, it’s inhaled and shows up in people’s blood. Gassed with gas.
Data Shows High Carcinogen Levels In Fracked Air
DENTON (CBSDFW.COM) – Air samples taken near a gas well in Denton showed increased levels of benzene, along with other chemicals, according to data released by the Denton Drilling Awareness Group on Thursday. The data, and infrared video of vapor releases from energy company facilities, comes days before the group is expected to officially file a petition to ban the fracking process in the city.
The air testing was done in a backyard in the Vintage neighborhood on the city’s south end. The neighborhood has been a focal point for the fracking fight in Denton, with gas wells within just a few hundred feet of homes.
A California lab showed benzene readings at 6.5 micrograms per cubic meter of air. That is two points higher than the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s limits for long-term exposure risks.
CBS 11 News has asked city officials for any of their own air monitoring data from the area. A TCEQ monitoring network that the city refers visitors to on its website does not have equipment in that immediate neighborhood.
DAG also released video, using an infrared camera, of vapor releases from three facilities in the city.
The lab data showed the presence of at least eight other compounds, but none except benzene appeared to be over the limits used as a standard by the TCEQ. Benzene is an irritant to the skin, eyes and throat. It is also a known carcinogen over time.
DAG already has enough signatures on a petition to ban fracking in the city, to force it to a city referendum. It is expected to be formally submitted next week.
A press release from Denton Drilling Awareness Group has a series of FLIR GasFindIR videos taken over a period of several weeks and results of air sampling done in a backyard during flowback.
The videos show that emissions of volatile organic compounds are an ongoing problem in Denton. No wonder the air quality is the worst in Texas. The press release says the city broke promises to monitor air around these sites to make sure no air pollution occurred.
Flowback emissions from EagleRidge operations in the Vintage and Meadows neighborhoods trespassed onto their property. At the very tail-end of the flowback process when the emissions had subsided, testing in a resident’s backyard still showed 7 chemical compounds including acetone, and benzene was detected over the state long term limit.
To read the whole press release, and watch the videos see: Videos, air sampling reveal Denton City’s broken promises to monitor fracking pollution
Here is a video I took during the EagleRidge flowback.
So, what’s the big deal about flowback?
It can be lethal. Deadly flowback vapors killed 21-year-old Montana man
It can make you sick.