Frackers Got Special Chemicals – Anytime they want proprietory secrets imposed the industry is dirty

Invariably it is to hide things that hurt people or hurt the planet. Usually both.


Day 38   12/22/13    

Today’s Topic:  Determining if water pollution has occurred


Section 1-80 of the Act governing Water Quality Monitoring provides a list of indicator chemicals that would suggest water contamination has occurred but doesn’t limit what may be tested for.  In fact, this section of the law states that “Sampling shall, at a minimum, be consistent with the work plan and allow for a determination of whether any hydraulic fracturing additive or other contaminant has caused pollution or diminution for purposes of Sections 1-83 and 1-85 of this Act.”

Section 1-85 of the Act governing the presumption of pollution or diminution does not limit the sources of sampling data that may be used to prove the pollution or diminution has occurred.

And yet, the IDNR Rules in Section 245.620 have narrowed the statutory basis for the presumption, treating Section 1-80’s list of “indicator chemicals” as a comprehensive list of what should be tested for.  The 1-80 parameters are intended to be INDICATORS of the presence of contamination from hydraulic fracturing, not an exclusive list of the possible contaminating constituents.  There are over 700 chemicals used in fracking.  1-80 lists only a handful of them.  A reasonable person would conclude that if a chemical other than those on the list of indicator chemicals was found and that chemical was part of the list of chemicals in the fracking operator’s work plan, then the operator would be presumed to be responsible for that contamination.

Revisions Needed:  Section 245.620 must reflect the intent of the law that the operator will be responsible for any pollution or diminution caused by fracking.  This responsibility will not be limited to a list of indicator chemicals but will include all chemicals used in the fracturing process.

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