Just Released by Concerned Health Professionals of NY: Updated Compendium of Risks and Harms Of Fracking (Unconventional Gas And Oil)

Concerned Health Professionals of New York, released a second edition of their invaluable resource the Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings of Risks and Harms of Fracking. This includes an important section documenting threats to agriculture and soil quality. The compendium is free and intentionally “organized to be accessible to public officials, researchers, journalists and the public at large“. It contains the full references for the scientific and medical literature, government and industry reports, and journalistic investigations that document fracking’s harmful impacts. Each article is clearly summarized and organized by topic:

  • Air pollution
  • Water contamination
  • Inherent engineering problems that worsen with time
  • Radioactive releases
  • Occupational health and safety hazards
  • Public Health Effects, Measured Directly
  • Noise pollution, light pollution and stress
  • Earthquakes and seismic activity
  • Abandoned and active oil and natural gas wells (as pathways for gas and fluid migration)
  • Flood risks
  • Threats to agriculture and soil quality
  • Threats to the climate system
  • Inaccurate jobs claims, increased crime rates, threats to property value and mortgages and local government burden

The authors of the compendium highlight several worrisome trends they observe in the data:

“First, growing evidence shows that regulations are simply not capable of preventing harm.”
“Second, drinking water is at risk from drilling and fracking activities and associated waste disposal practices.”
“Third, drilling and fracking emissions often contain strikingly high levels of benzene [a potent carcinogen].”
“Fourth, public health problems associated with drilling and fracking are becoming increasingly apparent.”
“Fifth, natural gas is a bigger threat to the climate than previously supposed. Methane is not only a more potent greenhouse gas than formerly appreciated, real-world leakage rates are higher than predicted.”

More about the authors:
“Concerned Health Professionals of New York (CHPNY) is an initiative by health professionals, scientists and medical organizations for raising science-based concerns about the impacts of fracking on public health and safety. CHPNY provides educational resources and works to ensure that careful consideration of the science and health impacts are at the forefront of the fracking debate. http://concernedhealthny.org.”