Barnett Shale: Study Finds More Arsenic in Wells Near Drilling

North Texas water wells within two miles of active gas drilling sites contain higher concentrations of arsenic and other carcinogens, according to a study published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. In the study, University of Texas at Arlington biochemists measured 100 wells across the Barnett Shale and compared the results to a similar study undertaken before hydraulic fracturing technology and higher natural gas prices opened the area to drilling. Some 30 percent of the wells within 1.8 miles of gas drilling sites showed an increased amount of arsenic and other heavy metals, the study said, and 29 wells exceeded the Environmental Protection Agency’s maximum arsenic limits of 10 parts per billion. One of the researchers, UTA biochemist Zacariah Hildenbrand, told The Denton Record-Chronicle that “to find that high of arsenic concentrations was alarming.”
Associated Press, Click2Houston 09/02/2014

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