The FRAC Act
SUPPORT THE FRAC AND BREATHE ACTS!
WRITE YOUR FEDERAL REPRESENTATIVE TODAY TO DEMAND NATURAL GAS DRILLERS FOLLOW CLEAN WATER LAWS!
Natural Gas drillers want to begin hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” for natural gas in the Delaware River Watershed. Unfortunately, the 2005 Energy Policy Act exempted gas and oil extraction from portions of federal environmental laws, exposing us all to a greater risk of pollution. One of these exemptions is for fracking, which is exempt from the Safe Drinking Water Act. Another exemption is from federal air quality regulations. Fracking involves the injection of a cocktail of water and toxic chemicals into a gas well bore at very high pressure. These pressurized fluids crack open the underground formation to release the gas. Studies show that, while some of the injected chemical-laden fluids are returned to the surface, most remains underground. This practice is dangerous and needs to be regulated, not given a “waiver” from the laws that protect our precious water resources. More than 15 million people get their water from the Delaware River Watershed; all are at risk of losing clean drinking water.
The Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals Act (FRAC Act–HR 1084) has been introduced in the House and in the Senate (S. 587) to undo the Safe Drinking Water Act exemption. Maurice Hinchey of New York and Jared Polis and Diana DeGette, both from Colorado, are the primary sponsors.
Airborne Toxic Health Effects Act (BREATHE Act–H.R 1204) would require drillers to adhere to best available technology standards in the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants to reduce pollution and emissions from gas and oil drilling. Gas extraction is a large and diffuse source of harmful methane gas and other harmful vapors that are making communities sick and our air unhealthy. This act would also close the hydrogen sulfide (H2S) exemption under the Clean Air Act; hydrogen sulfide is a hazardous air pollutant but is exempt when emitted from oil and gas operations. Congressmen Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), Rush Holt (D-NJ), and Jared Polis (D-CO) are cosponsoring the BREATHE Act.
Please take a moment to write your elected representative to tell them to stand up for clean water by supporting the FRAC Act and the BREATHE Act. (Sample letter below.)
For more information on natural gas drilling: http://www.delawareriverkeeper.org Delaware Riverkeeper Network, 300 Pond St., Bristol, PA 19007 215-369-1188
The FRAC Act – FULL TEXT
1ST SESSION S. 1215
To amend the Safe Drinking Water Act to repeal a certain exemption for
hydraulic fracturing, and for other purposes.
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
JUNE 9, 2009
Mr. CASEY (for himself and Mr. SCHUMER) introduced the following bill;
which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Environment and
To amend the Safe Drinking Water Act to repeal a certain
exemption for hydraulic fracturing, and for other purposes.
1 Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representa2
tives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
3 SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
4 This Act may be cited as the ‘‘Fracturing Responsi5
bility and Awareness of Chemicals (FRAC) Act’’.
6 SEC. 2. REGULATION OF HYDRAULIC FRACTURING.
7 (a) UNDERGROUND INJECTION.—Section 1421(d) of
8 the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300h(d)) is
9 amended by striking paragraph (1) and inserting the fol10
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•S 1215 IS
1 ‘‘(1) UNDERGROUND INJECTION.—
2 ‘‘(A) IN GENERAL.—The term ‘under3
ground injection’ means the subsurface em4
placement of fluids by well injection.
5 ‘‘(B) INCLUSION.—The term ‘underground
6 injection’ includes the underground injection of
7 fluids or propping agents pursuant to hydraulic
8 fracturing operations relating to oil or gas pro9
10 ‘‘(C) EXCLUSION.—The term ‘underground
11 injection’ does not include the underground in12
jection of natural gas for the purpose of stor13
14 (b) DISCLOSURE.—Section 1421(b) of the Safe
15 Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300h(b)) is amended—
16 (1) in paragraph (1)(C), by inserting before the
17 semicolon the following: ‘‘, including a requirement
18 that any person using hydraulic fracturing disclose
19 to the State (or to the Administrator in any case in
20 which the Administrator has primary enforcement
21 responsibility in a State) the chemical constituents
22 (but not the proprietary chemical formulas) used in
23 the fracturing process’’; and
24 (2) by adding at the end the following:
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•S 1215 IS
1 ‘‘(4) DISCLOSURES OF CHEMICAL CONSTITU2
3 ‘‘(A) IN GENERAL.—The State (or the Ad4
ministrator, as applicable) shall make available
5 to the public the information contained in each
6 disclosure of chemical constituents under para7
graph (1)(C), including by posting the informa8
tion on an appropriate Internet website.
9 ‘‘(B) IMMEDIATE DISCLOSURE IN CASE OF
11 ‘‘(i) IN GENERAL.—Subject to clause
12 (ii), the regulations promulgated pursuant
13 to subsection (a) shall require that, in any
14 case in which the State (or the Adminis15
trator, as applicable) or an appropriate
16 treating physician or nurse determines that
17 a medical emergency exists and the propri18
etary chemical formula or specific chemical
19 identity of a trade-secret chemical used in
20 hydraulic fracturing is necessary for emer21
gency or first-aid treatment, the applicable
22 person using hydraulic fracturing shall im23
mediately disclose to the State (or the Ad24
ministrator) or the treating physician or
25 nurse the proprietary chemical formula or
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•S 1215 IS
1 specific chemical identity of a trade-secret
2 chemical, regardless of the existence of—
3 ‘‘(I) a written statement of need;
5 ‘‘(II) a confidentiality agreement.
6 ‘‘(ii) REQUIREMENT.—A person using
7 hydraulic fracturing that makes a disclo8
sure required under clause (i) may require
9 the execution of a written statement of
10 need and a confidentiality agreement as
11 soon as practicable after the determination
12 by the State (or the Administrator) or the
13 treating physician or nurse under that
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#1. Support the FRAC Act [H.R. 2766; S. 1215]
If enacted, the laws drafted in the Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals Act will close the 2005 loophole inserted into the Safe Drinking Water Act [SWDA] and require gas drillers to disclose the chemicals they use in the hydraulic fracturing process. The House bill was introduced by representatives Diana DeGette (D-Colo.), Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) and Jared Polis (D-Colo.). The Senate version was introduced by Bob Casey (D-PA) and Chuck Schummer (D-NY). On March 24, 2011, the FRAC Act was re-introduced in the 112th United States Congress. The Gas Industry currently opposes the legislation.
# 2. Support the BREATHE Act [H.R. 1204]
Considered a sister bill to the “FRAC Act”, the Bringing Reductions to Energy’s Airborne Toxic Health Effects Act would close exemptions in the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) and the hydrogen sulfide (H2S) exemption, and it would prompt industry to deploy the best available emissions control technology. This bill was introduced by Reps. Jared Polis (D-CO), Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) and Rush Holt (D-NJ).
SOURCE: environmentallawresource.com, written by Jennifer Smokelin of Reed Smith.
#3. In Montgomery County, PA, support bills SB245 & SB246 proposed by State Senator Daylin Leach (D). These pieces of common sense legislation would define increased protection for natural resources such as drinking water and create a moratorium on gas drilling in PA State Forest Lands. Leach sponsored the Growing Greener Act II and the Renewable Portfolio Standards.
SOURCE: Daylin Leach
Dear U.S. Congressman or Senator:
As a constituent who has many concerns about pollution from hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” I am writing to ask you to support the Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals Act (FRAC Act) of 2011 (HR 1084) in the House and the Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals Act of 2011 (S. 587) in the Senate to remove the Safe Drinking Water Act exemption granted in 2005 to this dangerous practice that threatens our clean drinking water. More than 15 million people get their drinking water from the Delaware River Watershed and we simply cannot sacrifice our water for gas. I also ask you to support the airborne Toxic Health Effects (BREATHE Act) of 2011 (H.R 1204). We cannot tolerate our air being fouled by gas extraction; communities are suffering throughout gas drilling regions, including west of us in Pennsylvania.
The FRAC Act would lift the 2005 Energy Policy Act exemption of fracking from the Safe Drinking Water Act. In addition, it would require oil and gas mining companies to disclose the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing operations. H.R 1204) would require drillers to adhere to the best available technology standards in the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants to reduce pollution and emissions from gas and oil drilling. Gas extraction is a large and diffuse source of harmful methane gas and other harmful vapors that are making communities sick and our air unhealthy. This act would also close the hydrogen sulfide (H2S) exemption under the Clean Air Act; hydrogen sulfide is a hazardous air pollutant but is exempt when emitted from oil and gas operations. In order to protect our rivers, communities and air from the toxic effects of drilling, please support these Bills so gas drilling will have to follow clean water and air laws instead of being given a free pass at the expense of the public and the environment. THANK YOU FOR STANDING UP FOR CLEAN WATER!
Name & Address