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Fracking Waste: Is It Safe To Ship Pure Fuel Drilling Byproduct By Barge

Should a Texas company be allowed to ship fracking wastewater by barge up the Ohio River prior to disposal The corporate says sure. Environmental teams say no. The U.S. Coast Guard, which has last authority over river cargo, says it is investigating.

The proposal to ship fracking wastewater, also called brine, on the Ohio River has been in the works since final June, in accordance with the Columbus Dispatch. An organization referred to as GreenHunter Water, primarily based in Texas, just lately acquired three large liquid-storage tanks alongside the Ohio River that may very well be used as a switch station between fracking websites and disposal wells. In line with the Dispatch, there’s a fracking increase in Ohio right now.

Fracking, short for “hydraulic fracturing,” is a course of for extracting natural gas from shale rock by pumping tens of millions of gallons of pressurized water, sand and proprietary chemicals — together with toxic substances corresponding to benzene — down a well. All of that liquid needs to go someplace, and most of the time it is extracted from the pure gasoline properly after which locked again underground in disposal wells. Based on the Dispatch, Ohio is already home to many tons of of millions of gallons of fracking wastewater. “State information show that 12.2 million barrels of fracking waste and brine have been injected in the primary half of 2012, 56 % of which got here from Pennsylvania and West Virginia,” the newspaper wrote. There are 179 disposal wells in Ohio, many greater than in neighboring states.

River shipment is a sexy option for companies, since a tanker barge is able to carrying as much as 10,000 barrels of waste. By comparison, a tanker truck could only carry 80 to 150 barrels. In line with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, more than 150 million tons of cargo — together with coal and crude oil — are shipped by barge on the Ohio River every year.

The scale and weight of these barges makes navigation limited, as they don’t turn simply and may take up to 2 miles to come to a whole cease. The potential threat of these vessels was demonstrated last week when three barges loaded with coal broke free from a tugboat on the Ohio River. oil gas production sale All three barges were quickly recaptured. Things didn’t go as easily on the Mississippi River when a barge carrying eighty,000 gallons of crude oil struck a bridge on Jan. 26 and spilled a few of its cargo into the water. Because of the accident the river was closed to visitors for a number of days.

GreenHunter Water is a water-administration subsidiary of GreenHunter Vitality, which was founded in 2005 to “develop projects and function assets in the renewable energy sectors of biomass, biodiesel, wind, photo voltaic, geothermal and clean water,” in keeping with its oil gas production sale website. It exited the biodiesel business in 2010 and refocused its effort into “clean water administration” the next yr. Water seems to be GreenHunter Vitality’s only business presently. It is at the moment offering water management providers to oil and fuel operators within the Marcellus, Eagle Ford and Bakken shale formations.

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