An update on the giant Daisetta sinkhole, 2 years later.
Daisetta fears unstable future after sinkhole
Nearly 2 years later, concerns linger about land values and safety of town’s water supply
By CINDY HORSWELL
Whoa! At the same time the sinkhole was forming, “something potent gushed like a geyser from an abandoned well” on the town mayor’s property. Two years later, everything touched by the geyser fluid is dead, including 100 trees. The sinkhole is now a 6 acre toxic lake.
In the first published report providing any explanation for the phenomenon, a Texas Commission on Environmental Quality adviser theorized injection disposal wells may be primarily responsible for destabilizing the area and creating a kind of quicksand 1,000 feet below that led to the collapse. These wells are used to dispose of saltwater and other nonhazardous oil field waste by pumping them into geological formations deep below the surface.
The owner of the injection well had been dumping toxic drilling waste down the well since 1983. The operator wouldn’t comment but his former manager sure did.
Lonnie Baines, told city attorneys that DeLoach employees seldom verified what trucks were hauling there.
I’m not one bit surprised, are you?
Now, I know you’re going to laugh but The Texas Railroad Commission said operators are “required to inspect a driver’s paperwork.”
If you give a fox the key to the hen house, do you think he will fill out paperwork each time he eats a chicken? Industry in Texas is on the honor system and IT DOES NOT WORK!!!
Lonnie Baines, who worked for the operator said
“very rarely” was the paperwork checked even though the waste often burned his eyes and many of the trucks were marked “flammable.”
Of course, after checking the injection well records, the TRC tests
The operation shut down after the collapse and ended Baines’ employment. Railroad Commission officials say they have since reviewed paperwork of what was reportedly dumped there and found nothing improper.
The paperwork did show that the operator was injecting too much–over twice the permitted amount.
The TRC says everything is A-OK but Toluene was found in the town’s drinking water.
There is a VIDEO
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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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Mike H. says
There's also a bunch of liquid & gas pipelines in Liberty County. I bet those pipeline companies will be so thrilled when they loose their pipelines to the sinkhole!
And, it sounds like their friends at the TRRC have a hand in this by not regulating the amount injected in that disposal well.