Report: Texas Not Protecting Residents From Gas Drilling Dangers

By Jason Allen, CBS 11 News

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – A scathing new report accuses Texas of not protecting its residents from possible dangers of gas drilling. The report comes from the Texas Oil and Gas Accountability Project, part of the Washington-based group Earthworks.

The report recommends restrictions on emissions, new rules to contain drilling fluids and an evaluation on the amount of groundwater being pulled out of the aquifier for drilling.

“There’s things they can do and should do to protect our welfare and health, and they’re not doing it,” said Kelly Gant, a Denton resident active in pursuing restrictions on exploration in residential areas.

Gant claims that she and her family have suffered from severe asthma attacks and skin problems since moving into a home near several wells two years ago.

She said it has led to emergency room visits for she and her son. “All five doctors asked me the same question, ‘What have you been exposed to?’ And I just looked at them and said, I don’t know what I’ve been exposed to.”

The report comes just days after the drilling industry started its own website to report some of the chemicals used during the process known as fracking. A water, sand and chemical cocktail is injected into shale, creating fractures that allow gas to escape to the surface.

Since the website went online Monday, more than 50 wells in the North Texas region have been listed, including 12 in Tarrant County, 13 in Denton, 20 in Wise and 6 in Johnson.

“Most companies haven’t had a problem with the concept of transparency. “Its just maybe the mechanism, internal and external, to get that information out,” said Ed Ireland, with the Barnett Shale Energy Education Council.

According to Ireland, five state air monitors around the region have not turned up unhealthy air near wells.

Any attempt to place a moratorium on drilling he said, to wait for more data about health effects, just isn’t needed. “There’s a lot of experience with how to drill these wills and how to operate these wells and you don’t have to wait for anything,” he said. “It’s there. That information exists.”

More than 15,000 wells have been drilled, but only those that started since January are going up on the website.


One Comment

  1. Christopher says:

    This is of course better than the prospect of a lake Tsunami taking out a nuclear power plant here in Texas. Woo hoo! Go clean energy!!

    1. Inventor Jack Hansen says:

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      This is the only machine shown to be so-enivronmentally safe, that it has been allowed to process old tire rubber turning it into; fuel gases & fuel oil ~> set-up without need of any vents “INSIDE OF THE CAPITAL BUILDING” as seen on PBS-TV News
      One road block stopping this New Zero-Emissions, Clean-Up, Energy Recovery Process from moving forward has been found… now; Shut down in the USA.
      Federal Court found the offending Corporation guilty of collusion, then, ordered then ordered the closed-down of that multi-billion corp,
      NOW: on a scale level; The Inventor has started R&D on Drilling-Mud.
      Another, Newly Invented Process is extracting; Oil, Gas, & Carbon from DRILLING Mud; the normal toxic Drilling~Mud:
      And has been perviously shown in all university test reports… on waste rubber; ZERO Gas, Zero Oil ~toxins are released into the Air or onto the Ground… as the mud/dirt/clay is cleaned by recovering the gas & oil.

      This process inventor is looking to start working with a “REAL” GAS / Oil / Drilling company.

      All international, and US Patents, University-studies & written test study books, Front Pages Newspaper Stories “showing” making high explosives safely while inside of the Capital Building for US Sen. Rockefeller, Sen Byrd, Gov. Underwood, PBS-TV Shows and TV NEWS Stories … etc. etc. are available…

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  2. g.j. says:

    I wonder how close Mr. Ireland lives to one of these fracking sites? I’m going to go out on a limb here and say not very close.

  3. Mike in Texas says:

    This all well and good but as near as I can tell there is not one single technical person on the advisory board or board of directors:

    Mostly lawyers and politicians and a few environmental professors. Heck there is a gas well I can see out my front door. It is across from Grapevine Mills Mall .. one of the largest in Texas. They do not seem worried nor am I.

  4. Mad in Montague County says:

    If you make a complaint to the state of Texas about an injection well you are ignored. I know I have tried, the best you will get is lip service and NO followup. If they say the air is not affected, drive next to one of these rigs, smells like rotten eggs 24/7 and the tank trucks that haul off the injection water have drivers that care little for the safety of others. Bottom line-Oil and Gas companies own Texas and care little about the people near their faciilites.

  5. Nolan says:

    There is always people who will complain about everything they don,t know anything about. I have lived for 72 years with oil and gas wells nearly in my back yard and have had no problem with anyone in a very large family. Why start fighting something you don’t know anything about.

  6. Steve F says:

    Ever since several wells popped up near downtown Ft Worth – some 1 mile from my house, my eyes have been red & irritated, even becoming blood & painful at times, along w/ irritated sinuses & lungs. The haze around downtown makes it apparent that the air is NOT clean. Sometimes it smells odd in the direction of the wells.

    Try finding a jb when your eyes are red – you look like a druggie.

  7. David Mcfatridge says:

    YOU THINK gas is clean energy THINK AGAIN!

  8. gb says:

    The web site referred to in the article is, and it is not an industry site. The site is operated by state oil and gas regulatory organizations. In the future, the site should be referred to as a state-based initiative by the Ground Water Protection Council and the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission.

  9. Rick McDaniel says:

    Almost no one, is holding up this exploration, until the questions of safety, especially the safety of ground water, is properly examined.

    All local governments, and / or the state care about, is economic development, and to heck with the environment.

  10. FedUpTxn says:

    Face it people, our government isn’t protecting anything any more except for their OWN excessive income! We are all just sheep led to the slaughter for the benefit of a few.

Comments are closed.

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