Central Ohio water supply threatened by fracking

Thirteen Class II injection wells in Central Ohio sit in the headwaters of the Olentangy River and threaten to contaminate Ohio’s drinking water, warned Dr. Julie Weatherington-Rice, hydrogeologist and soil scientist. The key 2004 and 2010 laws that have allowed deregulated fracking injection wells in Ohio came from the secretive American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) bankrolled by the controversial Koch brothers.

The Koch brothers, cited as the third and fourth wealthiest individuals in the United States, have made Ohio the worst state in the northeast for protecting the environment against the oil and gas industry.

“We’re the worst by far in our area of the country,” said Weatherington-Rice. “We’ve become the dumping ground, more than 60% of the fracking waste in Ohio is coming in from Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Ohio is doing virtually nothing” in regards to regulating fracking.

“If you’ve got an old oil or gas well you can easily turn it into an injection well to take fracking waste,” she explained.

Weatherington-Rice spoke at a forum at the Main Library in Columbus on January 26 under the sponsorship of the Columbus Community Bill of Rights organization. The group is seeking to enact a charter amendment for the City of Columbus “to protect our community from radioactive and toxic oil and gas industry fracking waste.”

Carolyn Harding, spokesperson for the Community Bill of Rights group told the audience at the forum that “local people need to have local control to secure pure water, clean air and safe soil.”

Weatherington-Rice agreed, saying that “All of our environmental problems come down to protecting our water, air and soil.”

For more information you can go to: