By Michelle Bamberger

A pharmacologist and a veterinarian pull again the curtain at the human and animal wellbeing and fitness results of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”
Across the rustic, fracking—the extraction of common fuel by way of hydraulic fracturing—is being touted because the nation’s resolution to strength independence and a repair for a flagging economic climate. Drilling businesses guarantee us that the method is secure, politicians push via drilling laws with no severe public-health debate, and people who communicate out are marginalized, their silence bought through gasoline businesses and their warnings in regards to the risks of fracking stifled.
The genuine price of Fracking pulls again the curtain on how this poisonous technique endangers the surroundings and harms humans, pets, and cattle. Michelle Bamberger, a veterinarian, and Robert Oswald, a pharmacologist, mix their services to teach how infection at drilling websites interprets into unwell future health and heartbreak for households and their animals. through giving voice to the folks at floor 0 of the fracking debate, the authors vividly illustrate the results of fracking and factor an pressing caution to we all: fracking poses a dire hazard to the air we breathe, the water we drink, or even our nutrients supply.
Bamberger and Oswald display the harrowing studies of small farmers who've misplaced their animals, their livelihoods, and their peace of brain, and of rural households whose estate values have plummeted as their cities were invaded by means of drillers. even as, those tales provide us wish, as humans band jointly to aid each other and courageously struggle to reclaim their communities.
the talk over fracking speaks to a center quandary of latest existence: we require power to stay with smooth conveniences, yet what measure of environmental degradation, healthiness dangers, and threats to our foodstuff offer are we prepared to just accept to acquire that strength? As those tales exhibit, the stakes couldn’t be larger, and this can be a subject that none people can come up with the money for to disregard.

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Additional resources for The Real Cost of Fracking: How America's Shale Gas Boom Is Threatening Our Families, Pets, and Food

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So how do we obtain proof? The typical approach in environmental toxicology is to show that a toxic substance exists in the environment, then show the pathway that the substance enters the body, and finally correlate the symptoms with exposure to the toxic chemical. In a case associated with gas distribution, Erin Brockovich and Edward Masry settled a lawsuit in 1996 demonstrating that hexavalent chromium, a known carcinogen used to fight corrosion in the cooling tower of the Hinkley Compressor Station near San Francisco, leaked into wastewater that was put into unlined ponds near the station.

But was this an isolated instance? Could all of the woes that we heard from him be exaggerations? To look into this further, we visited a neighbor who keeps goats and fish as pets and had lived in the same house for forty years, a rented property with the mineral rights leased to the drilling company. Around the time that the would-be farmer’s fishpond was allegedly contaminated, the neighbor found that his goats were experiencing severe neurological symptoms, and five of eight suddenly died. At about the same time, he had replaced the water in a small pond where he kept koi with his well water.

When the wastewater dries on a dirt road, the substances become part of the dust that people breathe while walking, biking, or driving on the road. It is no surprise that health issues have been noted, given all of the potential problems associated with normal operations, accidental spills, and air and water contamination. ” The problem we face is that the symptoms of shale gas syndrome, while fairly consistent among those that have been heavily exposed to shale gas extraction, are not unique. Headache, GI upset, nosebleeds, rash, and burning of the eyes, nose, and throat have multiple causes, and proving without a doubt that the symptoms are caused by proximity to gas and oil wells is difficult at best.

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