Modern Natural Gas Development and Harm to Health: The Need for Proactive Public Health Policies
ISRN Public Health
17 May 2013
Madelon L. Finkel PhD, Jake Hays MA, and Adam Law MD
The Shale Gas Boom and the Need for Rational Policy
American Journal of Public Health
16 May 2013
Madelon Finkel PhD, Jake Hays MA, and Adam Law MD
A commentary calling for precautionary policy measures in the absence of methodologically sound data on potential harms to the environment and human health from shale gas development.
Potentially induced earthquakes in Oklahoma, USA: Links between wastewater injection and the 2011 Mw 5.7 earthquake sequence
Keranen KM, Savage HM, Abers GA, Cochran ES
Significant earthquakes are increasingly occurring within the continental interior of the United States, including five of moment magnitude (Mw) 5.0 in 2011 alone. Concurrently, the volume of fluid injected into the subsurface related to the production of unconventional resources continues to rise. Here we identify the largest earthquake potentially related to injection, an Mw 5.7 earthquake in November 2011 in Oklahoma.
Examining the Feasibility of Converting New York State’s All-Purpose Energy Infrastructure to One Using Wind, Water and Sunlight
12 Mar 2013
Jacobson MZ, RW Howarth, MA Delucchi, SR Scobie, JM Barth, MJ. Dvorak, M Klevze, H Katkhuda, B Miranda, NA Chowdhury, R Jones, L Plano, AR Ingraffea
This study analyzes a plan to convert New York State's (NYS's) all-purpose (for electricity, transportation, heating/cooling, industry) energy infrastructure to one derived entirely from wind, water, and sunlight (WWS) generating electricity and electrolytic hydrogen.
Marcellus Shale Drilling's Impact on the Dairy Industry in Pennsylvania: A Descriptive Report
Madelon L. Finkel, Jane Selegean, Jake Hays, Nitin Kondamudi
Fluid Migration Mechanisms Due to Faulty Well Design and/or Construction: An Overview and Recent Experiences in the Pennsylvania Marcellus Play
Anthony R. Ingraffea. Ph.D. P.E.
This PSE brief introduces the mechanisms leading to loss of well structural integrity and examines the prevalence of fluid migration from faulty wells in the natural gas industry and potential impacts for the Marcellus region.
Estimation of regional air-quality damages from Marcellus Shale natural gas extraction in Pennsylvania
Environmental Research Letters
31 January 2013
Aviva Litovitz, Aimee Curtright, Shmuel Abramzon, Nicholas Burger and Constantine Samaras
This study gives an estimate of the conventional air pollutant emissions (VOC, NOx PM2.5, PM10 and SOx) from shale gas development in Pennsylvania and the monetary value of the associated environmental and health damages. Region-wide damages were estimated between $7.2 to $32 million dollars for 2011. While emissions and damage estimates are relatively small compared to other major sources of air pollution in the state overall, they are a concern in regions of significant extraction activities, which tend to be concentrated in a few counties. In counties with concentrated activity NOx emissions from the shale gas industry were 20-40 times higher than allowable for a single minor source. The authors also note that the industry and regulatory agencies need to account for air emissions from ongoing, long-term activities and not only those associated with development since more than 80% of damages occur in the years after the well is developed. For instance, compressor station activities alone account for 60-75% of all extraction-associated damages. It is important to consider county-level damage given site-specific variability such as the concentration of shale gas activities, population, and areas where air quality is already a concern. The authors conclude that shale gas extraction will be associated with non-trivial air pollution emissions and that more detailed analyses (e.g. regional data acquisition and consideration of site-specific variabilit
Hydraulic Fracturing and Brook Trout Habitat in the Marcellus Shale Region: Potential Impacts and Research Needs
Weltman-Fahs M & JM Taylor
The expansion of hydraulic fracturing poses multiple threats to surface waters, which can be tied to key ecological attributes that limit brook trout populations. Here, we expand current conceptual models to identify three potential
pathways of risk between surface water threats associated with increased natural gas development and life history attributes of brook trout: hydrological, physical, and chemical.
Analysis of BTEX groundwater concentration from surface spills associated with hydraulic fracturing operations
Journal of the Air & Waste Management Association
14 Jan 2013
Gross SA, Avens HJ , Banducci AM, Sahmel J, Panko JM, Tvermoes BE
Concerns have arisen among the public regarding the potential for drinking water contamination from the migration of methane gas and hazardous chemicals associated with hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling. However, little attention has been paid to the potential for groundwater contamination resulting from surface spills from storage and production facilities at active well sites
PSE Sign On Letter to President Obama re: LNG Export Facilities
PSE facilitated a petition signed by over one hundred medical and public health professionals that urges the Obama Administration to delay any decisions regarding the construction of new liquified natural gas (LNG) terminals for the large scale exportation of shale gas to foreign nations. New LNG export facilities will accelerate shale gas development in the United States and the potential for harm to health and the environment from this novel energy production method has not been fully examined. More rigorous scientific and epidemiologic studies are needed before the Administration makes any significant policy decisions related to shale gas production and exportation.