From Fort Worth resident, Jim Ashford.
I have filed a complaint with TCEQ against Chesapeake Energy/Mid-Stream pipeline for excessive pollution and contamination of the air at my residence.
On or about January 21, 2010 Wolf Eagle Environmental tested the air emissions at my home at 6209 Riverview Circle, Fort Worth, Texas 76112. The findings indicated levels of benzene at 1.77 parts per billion by volume. Concentrations of benzene found in this test exceed TCEQ Long Term ESLs on an annualized averaging basis, and according to TCEQ, exceed Fort Worth background ambient levels of benzene of 0.2ppbv. Also, the presence of specific compounds (benzene, chloromethane, toluene, and m&p xylenes) found in this test, and in the concentrations detected, is considered out of range for normal ambient conditions.
Wolf Eagle Environmental believes compounds present in this test are the result of gas mining and exploration, based on reasonable scientific probability. A copy of their report has been sent to TCEQ.
In addition to the scientific air quality test by Wolf Eagle Environmental, TCEQ reported earlier in ‘Document Number BS0912-FR the following information.
The location and image described is ½ mile or less from my residence. This documented image from TCEQ was taken approximately 5 months before the air testing by Wolf Eagle Environmental in my backyard.
The gas drilling industry downplays the TCEQ reports that indicate the levels of benzene exceeding the long-term health concern levels as being of serious concern. Doing so is a reckless and negligent act for which they should be admonished.
The long-term health concern levels indicate an issue for exposure of over one year according to TCEQ. In the situation that I have described above, my concern is I have lived at this location over 5 years or well beyond the one-year concern level established by TCEQ. Additionally, many of the health issues from these chemicals may not develop until years later.
When the gas drilling industry, TCEQ or the City of Fort Worth officials state the air is safe to breath in Fort Worth, the truth is they are ignorant of the facts, they are lying or they don’t care. I have had the air tested and it contains dangerous levels of benzene at my home in East Fort Worth.
The air quality problem has been known for a number of months and nothing is being done to correct this known dangerous situation. Until I had the air tested, no one thought it was important enough to tell me or even wanted me to know the truth.
If the air in my neighborhood contains dangerous levels of chemicals from drilling in the atmosphere, how many other neighborhoods in Fort Worth have the same problem?
In a densely populated area where hazardous toxins are being emitted primarily by one industry, the government we citizens rely on, has ignored, sidestepped and continually denied the existence as being a problem.
About Sharon Wilson
Sharon Wilson is considered a leading citizen expert on the impacts of shale oil and gas extraction. She is the go-to person whether it’s top EPA officials from D.C., national and international news networks, or residents facing the shock of eminent domain and the devastating environmental effects of natural gas development in their backyards.
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Good for you, Jim Ashford. It's citizens like you that will be required to clean up our community, politically and otherwise. Like Mayor Tillman, "Dish" it to 'em, Citizen Ashford.
Yes, if enough people sued-it would make a big difference!
Of course all of the mentioned chemicals are toxic and can be found here….
ATSDR – Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
Interaction Profiles for Toxic Substances: Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene, and Xylenes (BTEX)
Below is a case study on oil and natural gas drilling in Colorado…
Public Health Implications of Ambient Air Exposures to Volatile Organic
Compounds as Measured in Rural, Urban, and Oil & Gas Development
GARFIELD COUNTY, COLORADO
CHK is putting a compressor station about 1/4 mile from my home in Big Booger!! Can't wait for the benzene, etc. and the NOISE, especially the Low Frequency Noise (LFN). It'll be a killer.
Jovan Gonzales says
Anon 2: it's very hard to sue for something like O&G pollution. The best bet is to get laws enacted that regulate the industry. The problem is that gas emissions are a slow killer. It's easy to pass off the deaths as being caused by other things. Thankfully, there are people like Jim Ashford and our own Sharon that aren't just sitting around doing nothing.
It's so great to hear stories like this. Seems to happen more and more. Times are gonna change!
DISH is fighting, Haltom City is fighting, Flower Mound is fighting, various neighborhood groups in Forth Worth, Denton, and Colleyville-Southlake are. There are numerous independent suits and more are coming. The winds of change, they are a blowin'.
Thanks Anonymous (2:04). But, be careful, the court system in Texas is crooked and bought-off by Big Gas also. I know it well.
Then American is dead.
Keep on fighting Jim!
One property in Wise County will see your 1.77 parts per billion by volume and will raise you to 59 parts per billion by volume. That's what a TCEQ air sample found on that property in January 2010, of all months. Of course the TCEQ sample result report doesn't indicate the long-term TCEQ ESL (You have to ask for it and even then it is still confusing getting an actual number) and apparently 59 ppbv isn't outside of the short-term criteria for benzene. I think the short-term exposure time limit is 1hour for most compounds according to the TCEQ website, but they haven't been out every hour to test it to make sure it went away.
Let's all move to the country!