Michigan Live is reporting that residents within a several mile radius
of fracking in Hart, Michigan are having to deal with the rotten egg odor
of hydrogen sulfide on their property. The gas escaped when workers with
Alta Resources, LLC switched pipes and gathered flowback fluid from the well.
As we have blogged in the past, hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is a process where water, mixed with sand and chemicals, is injected into a well to break up the porous shale, and allow the natural gas to be caught. There are some oil and gas companies that insist this is the only way to collect natural gas. One problem with this procedure is that we do not know what chemicals are used in the process, and as the laws currently stand, companies can call the information about the chemicals used "proprietary" and not disclose them. There is a possibility that the chemicals could get into the water table, harming the water supply. This process is currently regulated by states, many under railroad legislation! Federal Legislatures are pushing to bring regulation of fracking under the EPA's Safe Drinking Water Act.
We have also previously blogged that a recent study on the effects of homeowner property values located near a shale gas well where fracking was occurring showed that property owners who use local groundwater for drinking lost up to 24% of their property value if they lived within a mile and a quarter of a shale gas well.