A brand new Fracking Impact Study (August 2015) should be required reading for all of the residents who live in and around the Delaware River in the shadow of the shale gas boom. The report was commissioned and published by the Delaware RiverKeeper Network, an advocacy group aimed at preserving the health of the Delaware River. The Fracking Impact Study quantifies the potential harm to the environment and residents along the Delaware River Basin if the current moratorium imposed by the Delaware River Basin Commission were to be lifted. This ban has kept gas companies out of the Delaware River Basin to date but without a permanent ban, the basin could be opened.
The RiverKeeper Network commissioned a comprehensive study by CNA Analysis and Solutions, an independent, non-partisan, non-profit research firm, of what could happen to the region if the Delaware River Basin is opened up to fracking.
The Delaware River, the 400 mile long free flowing river that forms the western border for our community, is perpetually at risk from natural gas extraction companies because it sits on top of the Marcellus Shale, the second largest gas field in the country.
The Potential Environmental Impact from Fracking in the Delaware River Basin comprehensively details the potential environmental impacts broken into categories of land, water, and air.
- Land use required by the extraction process would cause a reduction in core forest areas, significant in a densely populated area that cannot afford more habitat destruction and loss of carbon storage.
- Local watersheds would also be degraded due to the amount of water used in the extraction process.
- Wastewater discharges of some key contaminants posed significant risks and increased erosion rates would contaminate the river headwaters.
- Billions of cubic feet of methane gas would be added to the atmosphere annually and nitrous oxide creating smog would dangerously decrease air quality in a region that now has clean, high air quality.
This report adds needed weight to the growing body of scientific studies on the potential detrimental impacts of fracking. Read the report and then add your voices to those opposing hydraulic fracturing along our western boundary and tell the Delaware River Basin Commission to make the fracking ban permanent.