News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Meaden & Moore

Northeast Ohio Medical University


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Environment


Monroe Co. drilling fire might provide impetus to change fracking rules
Gov. Kasich says the law may need to be changed to give first responders more information
by WKSU's ANDY CHOW


Reporter
Andy Chow
 
The questions revolve around the chemicals used in fracking that are considered proprietary information.
Courtesy of WKSU file photo
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:

Big changes could be coming to Ohio’s fracking regulations in terms of chemical disclosure. It’s a transparency issue environmental groups have been pushing for years. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, another step is in the works following a major chemical spill.

LISTEN: Fracking chemical disclosure

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:07)


Late last month, a large fire broke out at a hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — pad in Monroe County. According to a report from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, fire crews doused the site with more than 300,000 gallons of water. That forced nearly a dozen drilling-related chemicals to run off the site.

Several of those chemicals were then discovered in a nearby creek where the report says more than 70,000 fish were killed along a five-mile stretch of the creek.

Do first responders know enough?
In responding to the fire in Monroe County, Gov. John Kasich says it might be time to change laws again to make sure all first-responders have more access to all the chemical information.

"We do have, I’m told, the most transparent of all the fracking liquid in the country. But if it’s not getting to enough people, then we need to widen it. Because I don’t want to have people walking around saying, ‘Well I don’t know what was there.’”

Companies are already required to provide a list of the chemicals used at drilling sites. The only chemicals not on the list are those protected by trade rights,which are reported to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Trade secrets
Tom Stewart, executive vice president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, says that the drilling companies were compliant and disclosed all of their chemicals — even proprietary information — upon request. He adds that organizations such as the Ohio State Medical Association are satisfied with the current chemical disclosure laws.

“The people that really care about this stuff like doctors believe that they have—through their society—believe that they can get the access that they need. I think that what’s happening here is just another political gamesmanship.”

Stewart adds that creating more access to trade secrets would stifle the industry and company innovation.

The Ohio Environmental Council has been calling for expanded access to chemical information since the fracking industry started to take off in the state. Deputy Director Jack Shaner says the process could still be faster and that firefighters needed to know about the chemicals on the pad while they were rushing to the scene.

“Depending on what the chemicals are, that helps guide the effective suppression of that fire. Whether to use foam, to use water (or) other approaches to that fire. They can predict how it’s going to react, how it may flame up, or how it plumes -- how air emissions will flow. Firefighters desperately need that information.”

'Not swept under the rug'
Kasich has said for years that he’s for strong regulations while still preserving the industry.

“I think it’s absolutely critical that we protect this environment. But we can protect it and still have a good business that’s employing lots of people in our state so these things are not taken lightly. They’re not swept under the rug. They’re things we focus on.”

The governor also said he wants to take a look at ways of improving the internal communication within his administration. Both the Ohio EPA and Department of Natural Resources say they were on the scene to help with the investigation and cleanup.

As the federal EPA releases information about the cleanup—ODNR continues to investigate the fish kill and the cause of the fire.

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Bringing back ballet in Cleveland
I do think Ballet in Cleveland is doing good things, but the fact that director says "When we have flourishing companies like the New York City Ballet and the A...

Report confirms some Vietnam veterans may have been exposed to Agent Orange
was in nam 1969 exposed va stated lost medical records was in lawsuit from 197? till settled 0 $ 2010 ? said all nam vets will get back disability till 198? jus...

Mentorship grant program redefines "faith-based" provision
Can't anyone have values, beliefs, and morals anymore? How is it anymore unconstitutional for a school partner with a "faith-based" organization than any other ...

Exploradio: The challenge of finding a healthy balance with technology
Thank you, Jeff, for another well done Exploradio. I always learn something interesting about what is happening in NE Ohio.

Northeast Ohio's transgender community rallies around restroom issue
A good first step would be for Cleveland to require restaurants to have a public restroom. Cleveland is the only city I've ever been in where restaurants somet...

Vapor shops say tobacco tax hikes could hit them hard
Maybe you should be DOING a study, since every time you've tried to villianize them all that's happened was the opposite. I'm not a fan of alcohol that's flavor...

New law gives access to birth records to Ohio adoptees
Can siblings also look for their missing brother or sister? And how do we go about it?

Ida McKinley's tiara comes home, with the help of "Pawn Stars"
I donated to the fund to keep the tiara at the museum where I believe it belongs. I took my 16 year old granddaughter to the showing I dont think it will be som...

ResponsibleOhio names 10 counties as possible pot-growing locations
Ohio has always made its money off our prison system ,and ohio is so hard nose on us the public that there voicing concerns saying there on our behalf bullcrap ...

Akron's plan to create its own construction company is on hold -- for now
They talk about displacing workers... This is all about the teamster union. The city is allowing RW Sidley out of Canton to haul concrete for one of the CSO pr...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University