This is my final response to Council’s plans to rescind the gas ban dated Aug. 3, 2011.
The Chronicle article states the water table is at the 1,300-foot level, and they are drilling down to 7,000 feet where the fracturing occurs and thus could not contaminate the water table. Using the fracture pressure of 10,000 PSI would push a column of water upward to 23,070 feet or 4.37 miles. If there are cracks in the earth’s formation between the water table and the 7,000-foot level, one can see how easy it would be to force the fracturing liquids into the water table and thus contaminate our water supply. After fracture, not all of the contaminated liquids are removed and thus future contamination of the water table is a possibility.
I am sure most of us have seen on the news and/or 60 Minutes where people who have had wells drilled and fractured near their homes could turn on the kitchen faucet and stick a lighted match to the water and watch it light up like a blow torch. The only way gas could get into the water supply would be through cracks created from fracturing the shale.
The article also leads one to believe that if the drillers are not appeased by council or local business, and the game is not played by their rules, then they will take their bat and ball and go home and/or it’s the highway. Beyond local contractors, food and lodging businesses, there has been little boom to the area compared to the destruction of our roadways.
The article stated the drillers go four-fold in what they do. I would like to see the figures on how this was arrived to, as the drillers in our area cannot do one-fold and control the dust or permanently fix our roadways; and yet, they continue their operations.
Also, Tim Morris, in his Letter to the Editor, indicated well drilling has been going on since the 1800s with no problems; but until recent years, they did not fracture with high pressure and millions of gallons of toxic and hazardous water.
In closing, to place the drillers atop a pedestal or look to them as God’s gift to West Virginians as depicted in the article, is wrong and only one side of the story.
David K. Kimble