Wince of the Week, September 30-October 6, 2012: Our EHRP team winced when we read this, from our writer Evelyn Nieves, published first on Alternet, “The North Dakota Oil Fracking Boom Creates Clash of Money and Devastation”
Tribal police were getting so many calls from people spotting trucks dumping toxic fluids– several each week, Dennis Fox said– that in August 2011 it imposed fines of up to $1 million for a third deliberate offense.
Then there are the gas fires.
All over the Bakken lands, startling fires rise above the hayfields, spewing natural gas into the atmosphere. The fires, or flares, are a byproduct of oil production. When fracked gas is released, so is natural gas, but since natural gas is going begging on the worldwide market, and building the infrastructure to capture the gas would be expensive, companies just burn it. The fires spew over two million tons of carbon dioxide into the air each year, the equivalent of nearly 400,000 cars.
The World Bank, which has been campaigning for 10 years to get nations such as Russia, Nigeria, Iran and Iraq to stop flaring, now ranks the United States as the fifth worst offender thanks to North Dakota’s oil boom.–excerpted from “The North Dakota Oil Fracking Boom Creates Clash of Money and Devastation” by Evelyn Nieves.