Today, as hundreds of Ohioans are traveling to Washington DC to participate in Stop the Frack Attack, the No Frack Ohio Coalition delivered a letter signed by 1500 Ohio residents to US EPA, Assistant Administrator Mathy Stanislaus, Office of Solid Waste & Emergency Response, in support of reclassifying wastes associated with the exploration, development, or production of oil and gas (E&P wastes). It calls for standards that would regulate E&P waste as hazardous.
The letter written in support of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) petition to develop standards that would regulate E&P wastes as hazardous waste under Subtitle C of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). The letter outlines that, "The NRDC request is based on overwhelming evidence that E&P waste is hazardous, taking into account its toxicity, corrosiveness, and ignitability; that it is released into the environment where it can cause harm; that state regulations are inadequate; and that there are numerous methods available to manage it as hazardous waste."
This issue is of special concern for Ohioans in general. The practice of high volume horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," is increasing in our state, and most of the E&P wastes generated in Pennsylvania are now being transported across the border for disposal in Ohio's Class II injection wells. Ohio is the "DUMPING GROUND" for hazardous waste in the east.
Teresa Mills, representing the NO FRACK OHIO COALITION stated, " when EPA made the determination to not regulate E&P waste as hazardous oil and gas drilling was a whole different ball game. The E& P waste of today is not the same waste that came from our grandfathers' wells in terms of quantity and quality. To not regulate this waste as hazardous is just irresponsible. If industry cannot find another way to dispose of this waste other than injecting it into the ground, or into waterways they should not be able to produce it."
We have also learned that this same waste will be coming into Ohio from New York, if and when this dangerous practice starts there. Moreover, Ohio's current oil and gas regulations do not afford sufficient protection to Ohio's citizens and the environment. The letters states, "We The People of Ohio must be protected from the destruction of our communities by the oil and gas industry. Water is our most precious natural resource, and regulating E&P wastes as hazardous waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) will help ensure the safety of drinking water throughout our state."
Petition letter found here http://bit.ly/xTTaYL