The next petro boom
‘Onshore liquids-rich opportunity’ lures Gulf oil players into South Texas
By Greg Harman
While the hydrogen-sulfide odor may be familiar, mining of the deep oil- and gas-bearing shale has never been done in South Texas on this scale, and it’s a practice that’s proven disastrous at sites across the country.
Eagle Ford Shale residents don’t yet know what’s coming their way. They’re still in the honeymoon, first blush stage. High on promises of free money they give little thought to the realities of life in the gas patch.
But, at least one rancher is having buyer’s remorse. He stumbled upon a film on HBO called GASLAND and soon after sought me out. Worried about spoiling his water that comes from the Carrizo Aquifer, his ranch land and his fresh air, he asked what steps he can take now to protect his way of life.
Protecting your environment after the fact is more challenging then having protections written into the lease but there are steps you can take to build in some protection.
- Get baseline water testing BEFORE drilling starts so you will have proof if your water changes.
- Have your property appraised so you can prove loss of value.
- It’s also smart to do some soil testing.
- Test the water in any creeks and ponds on your property. It seems drilling waste often ends up in places where it shouldn’t
- Read Oil and Gas At Your Door
Some contact information you will need:
- EPA “Eyes on Drilling” Tipline – 877-919-4372
- Texas Railroad Commission District 1 & 2 – (210) 227-1313
- Texas Commission on Environmental Quality 1-888-777-3186
- National Response Center
You will need to join forces with us to fight for better drilling practices.
And find out when and how you can make your voice heard with the officials that decide how responsibly the drilling industry will operate in Texas.
We are gearing up for the next legislative session and we need all hands on deck. Eagle Ford Shale residents have an opportunity to learn from the mistakes made in the Barnett Shale.
“There’s certainly the potential from what I’ve seen,” said David Sterling, a professor at the University of North Texas Health Science Center School of Public Health. “If some of the higher numbers I’ve seen are real, then these are chronic exposures that could be occurring at levels that might have health impacts.”
Gather up your neighbors and organize into groups. When you have a group of people interested, contact me and I’ll come show you a presentation that reflects reality more than the ones the landmen show.
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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