I’m a busy woman! I interrupted my day to dress up (sort of) and drive to Dallas City Hall to deliver some vitally important information to the Dallas City Plan Commission about the Luna South Gas Processing Facility that is under your consideration. I have some vitally important information for you, information that you have not yet heard. You refused to listen.
Thankfully Susan Sullivan got to speak.
Here is what I would have said to you Commissioners:
An earlier speaker mentioned a peer-reviewed study that links gas drilling to human and animal health affects. There are actually FIVE peer-reviewed studies linking shale oil & gas production to health impacts.
I lived in the gas patch for sixteen years. Now I am an organizer for Earthworks Oil & Gas Accountability Project helping people who are affected by these kind of facilities.
Natural-gas compressors, pipelines and plants released more than 70,000 tons of pollutants in Texas over the past three years due to accidents or other “abnormal” events. These events are a necessary part of operations. Releases of toxins into the air are required operations.
These facilities are allowed to release emissions into the air for many reasons. A blowdown is an allowed emission event that purges or empties the system of all the contents including VOC’s and chemicals.
In Argyle, where Susan Sullivan lived, the Argyle Central Facility TCEQ issued permit estimated 144 blowdowns a year from the four compressors. In 2011, there were 501 blowdowns, or about 1.37 on average each day. The Argyle Central Facility exceeded their permit on February 3, 2011!
Many of the residents sued the operator, reached a settlement and can no longer tell their stories. But I can tell their stories.
During releases from ACF many pollutants where released into the air. Residents documented the pollutants and tracked their health affects, which included headaches, nausea, nosebleeds, rashes, dizziness, and optical hallucinations.
New research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association has found a strong link between the kind of air pollution from natural gas facilities and heart attacks. Researchers suspect the pollutants enlarge heart tissue.
Four Argyle residents had heart attacks that coincided with releases. All four had enlarged heart tissue. Two people died. One was a thirteen-year-old boy. One of the survivors is here today. Please stand up Jana.
The TCEQ has taken no action to improve the situation for residents near ACF. The facility was issued a violation to the Clean Air Act by the EPA for “a release of an extremely hazardous substance…”
This story is echoed in areas of shale production throughout the United States.
That’s what I tried to say before a very nice, and handsome Dallas police officer helped me find my way out of the chambers. I hear I made the news.