Archives for posts with tag: water pollution

From Scientific American:

The French parliament voted on June 30 to ban the controversial technique for extracting natural gas from shale rock deposits known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, the web sites of Le Monde and other French media reported.

The bill had already passed the National Assembly, the country’s lower chamber, on June 21, and on June 30 a Senate vote of 176 to 151 made France the first country to enact such a ban, just as New York State is preparing to lift a moratorium on the same method.

The vote was divided along party lines, with the majority conservative party voting in favor and the opposition voting against the bill, according to Le Monde. The Socialist Party, in particular, opposed the bill because it did not go far enough. The bill’s critics said that it left open possible loopholes and that in particular it does not prevent the exploitation of oil shale deposits by techniques other than fracking. An earlier version of the bill, which the Socialists had supported, would have banned any kind of development of the deposits, Le Monde reported.

Companies that currently own permits for drilling in oil shale deposits on French land will have two months to notify the state what extraction technique they use. If they declare to be using fracking, or if they fail to respond, their permits will be automatically revoked.

Fracking requires the injection of vast quantities of water and potentially hazardous chemicals into the ground to force the release of natural gas. The U.S. government is investigating the environmental impact of the technique, which critics say produces toxic waste and pollutes water wells.

From Auburn University:

The Living Downstream video was first produced over a decade ago in VHS format. Recently, the video was reformatted in digital form and updated to reflect the growth and evolution of the AWW Program over the past 18 years, since its inception in 1992. Under the leadership of Dr. Bill Deutsch, AWW Program Director, thousands of Alabamians have been trained and certified in water quality monitoring, from the Tennessee Valley to the Gulf of Mexico. AWW-trained citizen volunteers monitor their local waters, educate communities on how to better utilize and preserve water resources, and actively take part in shaping water-management policy throughout Alabama. For more information on the AWW Program, visit http://www.alabamawaterwatch.org.


Columbia State:
Drinking water poisoned near sewage disposal site.

Folks in Pelion complained bitterly 21 years ago about human waste and grease that would be dumped on fields in their community. But state regulators approved plans for a sewage disposal site anyway — publicly assuring residents the waste wouldn’t stink up the countryside or hurt the environment. Now, the same agency that approved the sewage dump site is scrambling to stop dangerously high levels of toxic pollutants from spreading in groundwater. More . . .

Associated Press: New USGS study finds mercury widespread in Indiana.

One in eight fish taken from Indiana waterways and analyzed over a five-year period was tainted with the toxic metal mercury, according to federal scientists who last year reported that precipitation that falls near southeastern Indiana’s coal-fired power plants harbors some of the nation’s highest concentrations of atmospheric mercury. The study led by U.S. Geological Survey hydrologist Martin Risch also showed that mercury contamination in both surface waters and fish across Indiana routinely exceeds levels recommended to protect humans and animals. Risch said the front cover of the mercury report includes photographs of an eagle and a boy holding a big fish. More . . .

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