Shale Gas and Water Resources

Sunday, February 14, 2016: 10:00 AM-11:30 AM
Marshall Ballroom South (Marriott Wardman Park)
Robert Jackson, Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA
For more than five years our research group has studied the question, “Is water quality different for homeowners living near natural gas and oil wells compared to people living farther away?” In this talk I will answer that question for different chemical components, including stray gases, salts, metals, and organic compounds, presenting new research results and the work of others as evidence. The answer to the question is usually “no”, but there are exceptions.  What factors, such as industry best practices and local geology, make the exceptions more likely? What can high-profile and controversial cases, such as Parker County, TX, Pavillion, WY, and Dimock, PA tells us, now that years have passed since the initial complaints occurred?  I will examine these and other issues associated with hydraulic fracturing and the extraction of unconventional natural gas and oil.