Hundreds of complaints have been made about well-water contamination from oil or gas drilling in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, and Texas. Four states making key contributions to the nation’s energy boom.
The Associated Press has released some figures on these complaints.
Pennsylvania received 398 complaints in 2013 alleging that oil or natural gas drilling polluted or otherwise affected private water wells, compared with 499 in 2012.
More than 100 cases of pollution were confirmed in Pennsylvania over the past five years.
Ohio had 59 complaints in 2012 and two confirmed contaminations; and 40 complaints for the first 11 months of 2013, with two confirmed contaminations and 14 still under investigation.
None of the six confirmed cases of contamination were related to fracking, said Department of Natural Resources spokesman Mark Bruce.
West Virginia had around 122 complaints that drilling contaminated water wells over the past four years.
In four cases the evidence was strong enough that the driller agreed to take corrective action, Wes Virginia officials said.
In Texas, more than 2,000 complaints have been reported, and 62 of those allege possible well-water contamination from oil and gas activity, said Ramona Nye, a spokeswoman for the Railroad Commission of Texas.
Texas regulators haven’t confirmed a single case of drilling-related water-well contamination in the past 10 years, she said.