|Dead corn in south Texas-- mile after mile after mile|
At first they seemed "out of touch." But then I realized, these people are living lives close to the land-- they are not tied every minute to Facebook or the internet. They probably watch little to no TV. They are not aware of which new documentaries have just been released on fracking. They are a different generation of people who don't have time to sit back and ponder the meaning of life or draw conclusions about environmental degradation. They are busy living and working. Hopefully after our meeting yesterday, they have been awakened to the reality of what is happening around them. This reality is not the stuff of dreams-- neither their own dreams or the dreams of their children.
|Condensate tank farm in Cuero, TX|
|Fracking wastewater pond just beyond the trees|
One resident has complained to TRC and TCEQ about his well water. One sniff of it will tell you all you need to know about the dangers of injecting chemicals and diesel fluid underground. His well was contaminated nearly a year ago with benzene (a known carcinogen used in the fracking process). The diesel is used as a lubricant during the drilling process, similar to the way we use WD-40 to "loosen sticky mechanisms." Time after time, the TRC, TCEQ, and the EPA have guaranteed that there is NO WAY these chemicals can get into someone's well water. But they can't explain how after decades of perfectly clean water, a relatively shallow water well suddenly has benzene and diesel in it and that this problem emerged in direct correlation to the drilling going on in the area. All they know is that it's not from the drilling. No way, they say. They have told the resident repeatedly that there is nothing wrong with his water. I smelled the water sample and I can tell you unequivocally THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH THE WATER! The jug of water in the picture below is brownish, gritty and smells heavily of diesel fuel.
|Contaminated water from a well in DeWitt County, TX|
|Gas flaring near Yorktown, TX|