Fracking Montana and Wyoming’s Beartooth Front

December 20, 2013 • Pete Dronkers

In October, Energy Corporation of America's CEO, John Mork, made a huge mistake.  In a press conference, he declared that he would like to "bring something like the Bakken" to areas surrounding Red Lodge, on the flanks of Beartooth-Absaroka Wilderness, and then added salt to the wound and announced that it would "fundamentally change these areas the way it has changed other areas of the United States."

Mr. Mork is exactly right -- it would fundamentally change these areas.  If his plans succeed, folks can expect to see changes in the scenic landscape, and in crime rates, road conditions, the affordability of rent and food, and perhaps most importantly, changes in the clean water and air currently enjoyed in the area.

Políticas toman antecedente sobre el sentido común en Wyoming

December 17, 2013 • Jhon Arbelaez

Esta es la primera parte en una serie especial explorando el lado personal de los organizadores de Earthworks.

En noviembre del 2013, organizadores de Earthworks tuvieron la oportunidad de visitar Pavillion, Wyoming, el caso mas infame y más conocido por la contaminación de agua que existe en los Estados Unidos. En el año 2011, la EPA emitió un informe preliminar, el cual ataba directamente el fracturamiento hidráulico a la contaminación de las aguas subterráneas en el área. En su informe, la agencia determino que los productos químicos utilizados en el fracturamiento hidráulico alcanzaron los acuíferos a través de vías subterráneas. La agencia dijo: "contaminación del agua subterránea con componentes tales como los que se encuentran en Pavillion son típicamente inviable o demasiado caros para remediar o restaurar".  

Politics over common sense in Wyoming

December 17, 2013 • Jhon Arbelaez

In November, 2013, Earthworks staff had a chance to visit one of the most well known cases of water contamination from fracking – Pavillion, WY. In 2011, the EPA issued a preliminary report, directly tying fracking to groundwater contamination in the area. In its report, the agency found that chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing most likely reached groundwater through subsurface pathways. It went on to state: “Groundwater contamination with constituents such as those found at Pavillion is typically infeasible or too expensive to remediate or restore.” 

Pavillion Area Concerned Citizen Demand Answers on Abandoned EPA Study

June 26, 2013 • John Fenton

Dear Governor Mead,

It was unfortunate you were unable to attend your meeting in Riverton on June 20th; we hope your condition has improved.

After reviewing the State’s plan for addressing the contamination impacts in our community, Pavillion Area Concerned Citizens (PACC) has the following initial comments and questions.

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Pavillion-area citizens, national groups oppose Wyoming’s control of the Pavillion groundwater contamination investigation

June 21, 2013 • Earthworks et. al.

Pavillion, WY & Washington, D.C. -- Pavillion-area citizens, landowners and environmental groups today condemned Wyoming Governor Mead’s announcement that the state is assuming control from the EPA of the investigation into groundwater contamination by fracking-enabled oil and gas development near Pavillion, WY.

In the announcement, the Governor congratulated EPA and Encana – the company operating in the Pavillion area – for working with him to “chart a positive course” for the investigation.

Groups Appeal Fracking Chemical Case to Wyoming Supreme Court

April 17, 2013 • Earthworks, Earthjustice, et al

Public interest organizations are seeking disclosure of chemicals that are injected underground

Cheyenne, Wyo. — Several public interest and government watchdog groups have appealed to Wyoming’s highest court, asking it to compel the state’s oil and gas permitting agency to disclose the chemicals that are injected underground during the oil and gas production process of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

Represented by the public interest environmental law firm Earthjustice, the Powder River Basin Resource Council, Wyoming Outdoor Council, Earthworks and the Center for Effective Government filed the appeal to the Wyoming Supreme Court today.

Groups In Court Today Seeking Fracking Chemical Information

January 22, 2013 • EARTHWORKS et. al.

CASPER, WY – In an effort to help protect the public from exposure to toxic chemicals, the Powder River Basin Resource Council, Wyoming Outdoor Council, Earthworks and Center for Effective Government (formerly OMB Watch) went to court today to ask a judge to require the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (WOGCC) to disclose information about chemicals used during the controversial oil and gas development process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

Under regulations approved in 2010, Wyoming became the first state in the nation to require well operators to disclose the identities of chemicals that are mixed with water and injected into the ground during fracking. But since the regulations were adopted, the Commission has approved some 50 secrecy requests, shielding identifying information about over 190 different chemicals, by Halliburton and other oil and gas service companies.

New Study Supports Water Contamination Due to Fracking

October 3, 2012 • EARTHWORKS

Joint release with Natural Resources Defense Council * Sierra Club

U.S. Geological Survey Verifies EPA Findings in Pavillion, WY

Pavillion, WY -- An independent analysis of new U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) water monitoring data verifies a 2011 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) investigation into whether hydraulic fracturing contaminated the Wind River aquifer near Pavillion, Wyoming - an important groundwater source that provides water to thousands of Wyoming residents and farmers.

The preliminary results of EPA’s study was one of the first to document hydrocarbons consistent with fracking fluid chemicals in drinking water wells and monitoring wells located near natural gas wells.  EPA’s preliminary results have since been attacked by the oil and gas industry, as they seek to continue their dangerous practices and protect their own interests over public health and safety.  USGS’s study was conducted specifically to check EPA’s results.