Late last month the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) released a list of frac fluid chemicals to the Associated Press that started somewhat of a media frenzy. The PA DEP then announced, a couple of days later, that the list contained ALL of the chemicals stored on well sites not just in frac fluid. These additional chemicals include such things as fuel used for vehicles, brake fluid, and other chemicals that are NOT pumped into the ground during the process of fracing. The release of the list was rather irresponsible on the part of the DEP considering the title was “Chemicals Used in the Hydraulic Fracturing Process in Pennsylvania” (see below) and anti-drilling activists are always looking for reasons to attack the industry. This padded list was compiled from the Material Safety Data Sheets that are required by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) for all types of industries. These sheets are kept on well sites to be available in case of an emergency.
Earlier in June the Marcellus Shale Coalition also put out a fact sheet regarding frac fluid. For those that do not know, the Marcellus Shale Coalition is an organization that was formed in 2008 to promote responsible development of the Marcellus Shale. Some of the members include Anadarko, Atlas, Chesapeake, EOG, Range, Talisman, and many more big names in the industry. The fact sheet helps explain the truths about frac fluid and has a great chart that lists the chemicals and describes the common application of each chemical.
To learn more visit the Marcellus Regulatory, Environmental Info Folder in the Marcellus Unconventional Update in DI’s DNA.