The following is Texas OGAP’s public comment submitted to the TCEQ regarding their enforcement action against Aruba Petroleum. Anyone can make a public comment. I urge all those who are impacted by Aruba Petroleum’s irresponsible Barnett Shale extraction practices to make their own comment.
Fax your comments to Jennifer Cook, 512-239-3434, by September 5th
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Attn. Jennifer Cook
P.O. Box 13087
Austin, TX 78711-3087
Sharon Wilson, organizer
Texas Oil and Gas Accountability Project
Public Comment Docket #2010-0365-AIR-E; TCEQ ID NUMBER: RN105845135
To Whom it May Concern,
The Texas Oil and Gas Accountability Project thanks TCEQ for the enforcement action taken against Aruba Petroleum for their irresponsible operations on the Ruggiero property in Wise County Texas.
As the Texas OGAP organizer in the Barnett Shale area, I am the go to person for citizens impacted by natural gas extraction activities. Aruba Petroleum is a small operator in the Barnett Shale yet the number of complaints I receive naming Aruba surpasses those from the major operators. Health complaints attributed to Aruba operations range from skin rashes and headaches to bloody noses, neurological problems and seizures.
Aruba has a pattern of irresponsible operations in the Allison, Texas community where the Ruggiero family lives and in other areas of the Barnett Shale including the LBJ Grasslands area where I live. There are currently 38 complaints against Aruba operations. Their disregard for property owners and human health and safety continues despite this enforcement. This indicates that the enforcement action and $35,000 fine assessed is not sufficient to motivate them to operate in a more responsible manner. Rather than rolling the four violations that occurred on January 17, 2010; February 3, 2010; February 27, 2010; and February 28, 2010, into one enforcement with a fine totaling $35,000, a more appropriate deterrent would be a separate $35,000 fine for each violation.
Texas OGAP believes this enforcement and fine are insufficient as a deterrent to prevent Aruba from continuing their pattern of irresponsible behavior that harms human health.