Cochrane Eagle Frack Poll & ACORRDS (Albertans Concerned Over Responsible Resource Development Society) looking for public awareness on frack impacts to human & animal health

Snap of stats taken July 5, 2017:

Cochrane Eagle Frack Poll:

Results as of July 1, 2017, just past midnight

ACORRDS (Albertans Concerned Over Responsible Resource Development Society) looking for public awareness by Lindsay Seewalt, Jun 29, 2017, Cochrane Eagle

A small army of rural Cochranites say they are tired of being ignored and having their voices overshadowed by the oil and gas industry.

Following several years of trying to create awareness around what they believe are critical human and animal health concerns stemming from the extraction process of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing – better known as “fracking” – some residents in the Lochend area northwest of Cochrane have put together a society to add weight to their voices.

The group – ACORRDS (Albertans Concerned Over Responsible Resource Development Society), which met Wednesday night at RockPointe Church in Bearspaw – is comprised of individuals who are frustrated with the province’s regulation (or lack thereof) of industry fracking of tight oil wells and their proximity to human habitation.

Fracking is the process of drilling lateral wells, using high-pressure liquid chemicals to penetrate tight rock formations to extract shale gas. Much of the controversy around the process is due to the open air flaring that occurs, emitting chemicals into the air.
“I think the oil and gas industry has had too much power in this province and I hope this government and future governments will take steps to move beyond fossil fuels,” said Nielle Hawkwood, who has lived and ranched in the Lochend area for some 40 years with her husband, Howard.

The couple is among the founding members of ACORRDS – which was registered as a non-profit Alberta society in late 2016. The intent of the society is to promote education and public awareness.

Nicknamed the “radioactive ranchers” by Canadian journalist Andrew Nikiforuk, the pair has been featured in the media for their journey – which began not long after fracking practices ramped up in the Lochend region in 2009.

According to the Hawkwoods, when fracking increased, their well water pressures rose, algae stopped production in their animal troughs and they began to lose some of their cattle unexpectedly.

After the loss of an alarming percentage of their herd in 2013 – around 10 per cent – the Hawkwoods had their soil tested and discovered it was testing high for radioactive materials. Soil samples were taken from the centres of dead spots and from areas of normal growth about 18 inches away. “Dead” samples contained more than three times as much chlorine as “healthy” samples. Significantly higher levels of uranium and strontium were also found.

Simultaneously, Nielle began to experience significant health problems herself – kidney malfunction and hair loss. While doctors told her it was due to aging, her symptoms drastically subsided by late 2015 – when fracking subsided in response to a declining market.

Nielle learned early on her health concerns were shared by many of her neighbours – like Daniel and Elaine Thomas.

“The oil and gas industry in Alberta is absolutely out of control due to the lack of regulation by the provincial government,” said Daniel Thomas, a Lochend area resident who has also worked in the oil and gas industry as an engineer for some 30 years.
Thomas said at its height in 2011 to 2014, with dozens of operational oil wells in the region, he and his wife, Elaine, experienced similar health concerns to what the Hawkwoods did: hair loss, headaches, dizziness and muscle pain.

He likens how the industry operates to a “great Ponzi scheme” – where wells are fracked, sold to “unsuspecting investors” and then when the market, tanks the wells are abandoned, leaving behind a mess for residents and taxpayers to foot the clean-up bill.
“From the broader and historical perspective, there are some long-time industry players who should or would be considered as criminals given their actions and inactions that have caused some unconscionable levels of hurt to many rural Albertans.”
Thomas said he has seen better, safer practices in developing and third world nations, but concerns are silenced in a province where so many feed their families as a result of the industry.

The Lochend Industry Producers Group (LIPG) is comprised of the main operators in the region: Ridgeback Resources Inc., Pengrowth Energy Corporation, Tamarack Valley Energy and ORLEN Upstream Canada.

According to Larry Stewart, chair of the LIPG, post-2008 (when LIPG began operations in the region) there were “approximately 170 wells drilled … of these 140 are in production.”
Stewart said the current market points to minimal predicted activity over the coming year and maintains the LIPG adheres to the “high standards and regulations by the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER)” including “numerous onsite inspections.”

Stewart said the LIPG takes all community concerns related to health seriously and that a regional health study conducted by the AER, with the help of member companies and area residents did not reveal significant health concerns.

“The AER put out that report and we, as a group, objected to it,” explained Nielle, emphasizing the report did not account for the health claims made by her and her neighbours.

According to the AER’s website, fracking rules since 2012 “require licensees to comply with enhanced requirements to report amounts and sources of water and chemicals used in every hydraulic fracturing job.”

It also states the operator must reveals contents of fracturing fluids used to the AER upon request and that all “fracturing fluids used above the base of groundwater protection be nontoxic.”

Patricia Pearsall-Pickup shakes her head.

The Cochranite reflects on her own experiences of taking on the industry after she and husband, Brian Pickup, found themselves landowners in the Lochend region following the passing of his mother.

With plans to honour her late mother-in-law by building a cottage for underprivileged children on their 18 acres of land near Westbrook School, the couple quickly learned what fracking was all about when an oil well was to be drilled 300-metres from where they had planned to build the cottage.

Initially motivated to take the oil company to task for drilling on wetland sharing their property, the couple said they battled with the AER on the basis that the drilling posed risks to the threatened northern leopard frog species.

After attending a Rocky View County council meeting, Pearsall-Pickup connected with another area resident who introduced her to the process of fracking and her own research began.

“I couldn’t believe what I was reading,” remembers Pearsall-Pickup, pointing to countless alternative scientific reports linking fracking to various health ailments – including impacts on endocrinology systems of children and rare cancers.

This prompted Pearsall-Pickup to form POWERS (Protecting Our Water and Ecological Resources Society). The society held a forum in the fall of 2011, calling for a moratorium on fracking; there have been other anti-fracking groups in the region over the last few years.

But taking on big oil was no small undertaking, according to Pearsall-Pickup.

Neighbours were pitting against one another –some were on board with the intention of POWERS while others wanted nothing to do with speaking out against an industry that was the source of their livelihoods or bringing negative attention that could impact property values in the area.

Without concrete scientific evidence to back claims made by herself and fellow community members, the society’s undertaking to spread awareness became onerous.

“It was like pulling teeth … this is Alberta and (people) are afraid of the industry.”
Pearsall-Pickup began to experience hair loss around 2011. By 2014, she learned she had vaginal cancer.

Following extensive chemotherapy and radiation, Pearsall-Pickup lives to tell her story and said she wants people to read up on recent health reports coming out linking vaginal cancers, other rare cancers and other health ailments to those living near frack wells.
She said she does not have the energy to get involved directly with ACORRDS but commends the Hawkwoods for their continued efforts.

Regan Boychuk is another ACORRDS board member with years of experience steeped in opposition to fracking, government royalty reviews and the status of orphan wells.
The former research manager with the University of Alberta’s Parkland Institute, Boychuk is now an independent researcher. He served on the oil sands expert group to advise the NDP’s royalty review panel last year.

Known for his critique of the Progressive Conservatives’ historical handling of the oil and gas sector, Boychuck said he has tried to work with NDP Premier Rachel Notley’s government – only to uncover that the current government has pandered to the industry’s lobbyists.

“There’s a great deal of science behind fracking and the dangers it imposes … hundreds of Albertans have learned the hard way.”

All parties interviewed by the Cochrane Eagle reiterated the overwhelming concern that there is very little scientific research available for Albertans on fracking and that alternative research reveals troubling news about fracking and the links to animal and human health.

Four out of 10 Canadian provinces currently have bans on fracking: New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Quebec.

American states of Maryland, New York and Vermont have also banned fracking either permanently or temporarily in recent years.

Members of ACORRDS are welcoming new members to reach out through the group’s Facebook page.


  • I’d just like to take this opportunity to thank people from Canada like Howard and Nielle. We’ve been listening to personal testimony from affected community’s since 2011 when fracking was proposed in Ireland. Jessica Ernest came here and told us her story.
    Foretold is forearmed. We engaged in the debate, educated ourselves about the public health risks and successfully brought forward legislation to ban fracking. What we have done should give affected community’s accross Canada some hope. Keep telling your story. The world is noticing and we thank you for your courage.


      Jessica Ernst knows little about fraccing, was affected by a coal well. Ireland is the lesser for having swallowed her guff, & has banned Ireland’s only chance at hydrocarbon energy – silly, swallowing all that alarmist misinformation.


        Personal testimony is the first and most important warning. Jessica’s credibility comes not only from her own case and her knowledge but from her courage and her honesty. I can’t imagine that the industry you represent could understand that. When Jessicia came to Ireland I remember the way the company interested in exploring here reacted. They’re contempt for their own people was exposed. We aren’t silly. We have a democracy in which we assert our rights to live in a safe place. As a sovereign state we legislated to protect our people so that communities like Jessicia’s like mine wouldn’t be negatively affected by activity which you for whatever reason condone. Canadians should be proud of her and of all the good people that raise the alarm about the negative impacts of petroleum exploitation.
        We send you all our love and we thank you all for your courage a hundred thousand times


          Just so long as Ireland doesn’t import any diesel, petrol or gas, or electricity generated from the same …

          Nimby hypocrisy otherwise.


            Maybe instead of making yourself look like just another mindless senior you should be looking at the facts. First off those of us who had ties to the oil industry 25 years ago don’t support it, there is no need for. There is nothing smart about creating a nightmare for the people when we have huge surpluses of oil and gas and there is no need for it. Secondly you had better start reading about what it’s doing in North America. start by pulling up “More Frequent , Stronger Earthquakes Linked to Fracking Alberta Study Finds”. Then there the horror stories in the U.S. where it’s brought salt to the surface destroying thousands of acres of land. Maybe you need to get into the real world. Jessica and Eddieymitchell are right and you aren’t.
            It’s no different than Ralph Klein telling you fools that deregulation would make your power bills a lot cheaper and you believed him.


        “Jessica Ernst knows little about fraccing, was affected by a coal well.”

        Not only does Jessica Ernst know a lot about frac’ing – and the resulting contamination – but she’s been kind enough to share with communities the information, and data, she’s personally uncovered and amassed, on the corruption and cover-ups by the government, industry, and regulators – that inevitably follow.

        The devil is in the dirty details, so read Andrew Nikiforuk’s killer-researched and award-winning book Slick Water, until your head explodes.

        ps. Wise and healthy communities say NO to contamination, corruption and cover-ups. Yay Ireland!


        There are approximately 1000 wells discovered in the Ernst v. Encana case. One coal well. Bullsh!t. Encana fracced 200 within the Base of Groundwater Protection. Ernst knows a thing or two, or a thousand about fracking, that is for certain. I think you should change your anonymous handle to Yetyputz;)

        How incredibly hilarious, you upvote your own posts!!!

  • quote: “Fracking is the process of drilling lateral wells, using high-pressure liquid chemicals to penetrate tight rock formations to extract shale gas. Much of the controversy around the process is due to the open air flaring that occurs, emitting chemicals into the air.”

    Not really. Hydraulic fracturing, as its name implies, is no more nor less than the application of fluid pressure to create small cracks in {oil or gas bearing} rock & propping the crack open to ease the flow of the oil or gas into the well. All the rest is common well drilling practice. As to open air flaring – that can be avoided.

    If people wish to set up groups against things bringing income to their fellow citizens, it behooves them to know what they are about.


      “Application of fluid pressure to create small cracks”. Wow! Talk about over simplification! the fluid you speak of contains dangerous chemicals which change to even more dangerous combinations when burned and flared, which is allowed by our government.


        Not many dangerous chemicals, & they don’t become more dangerous by being flared – daft idea.


          Not many, how about all dangerous. All six well bores by our home (and thousands in Alberta) were fracced entirely with hydrocarbons, no water used at all. Chemicals included kerosene, benzene, xylene, naptha, isopropanol and gelled propane.

          Combustion of flow back emissions can create far more dangerous compounds than what is in the fracture slurries, as formation products are co-mingled with the flow-back. For instance, the combustion of H2S, creates S02, known to be far more damaging to health at lower ppm than H2S.

          Flaring and incineration create a minimum of 150 distinct hydrocarbons, as per Strosher 1992.

          Fracking isn’t just for lateral wells. Fracking is done on vertical, horizontal, directional and deviated wells, as well as in shallow, intermediate and deep plays. It’s not done using just liquids, there are gas fracs. Prior to fracturing, the target formation is perforated using perf guns, generally fitted with gamma ray neutron logging equipment, so those cracks are actually initiated by a preceding process and tracked at the surface.

          The fracturing stage, is used to increase the length and fissures of the propagations in the target formation. After fracking the well needs to be tested, via flaring or incineration of the flow back, then produced. Since formation pressures are generally so low, complex systems of compressors, pump jacks and or lift systems must be installed to produce the well. In line well testing is an option via Directive 60, but one industry very, very rarely uses. Processing plants do not want fracture chemicals in their pipelines.

          If you want to play the industries pet, it behooves you to know what the process is about as well.


            You certainly have no idea.

            Look up the flash points of benzene & xylene – no one is going to pump them except as trace impurities within a hydrocarbon fluid.

            SO2 is used in farming, H2S will kill you. It might not be ‘per Strosher’, but coffee has between 400 & 1,000 chemical compounds in it.

            I think you have confused my quoting the journalist, with thinking I am making a claim. Maybe you could practice comprehension.

            Gamma ray & neutron tools are different tools. Perforations are carrot shaped, fractures are planar.

            You certainly have no idea.



              16-16 by our home was the only well to fall under the inadequate Frac Focus disclosure. The other five, the tour reports list Gibsons Frac Oil as their fluid of choice. As all can see at the link, benzene et. al are not trace impurities, but additives.

              Hydrocarbon fracs are common in plays where waxing and hydrate formation occur, industry/lobby has been full of it, when dishing out that all fractures are 99% water.

              Sulphur dioxide is a gas and please explain how and where it’s used in farming. It will also kill you, at lower ppm than H2S, as per OHS guidelines.

              Perforating guns, are fitted with gamma ray neutron charges, which assist logging the casing perforations at surface. They are different tools, used at the same time. But you knew that, along with knowing somehow, with your incredible gamma ray vision, the shapes of perfs, fracs and fissures! Even industry is honest on this point, they are imparting chaos to these formations.

              You gave such a dumbed down frac explanation, then got testy about the shape and trajectory of induced fractures, that made me laugh;)


              Sulphur dioxide is used in drying apricots & preserving wine, among other uses.

              “gamma ray neutron charges” is not one but three concepts. Of course I know the shape of perforations, everyone with technical knowledge does.

              I didn’t “give such a dumbed down frac explanation”, the journalist did. Can you actually read?


                Food preservation is not farming.

                I can read, can you?

                “Not really. Hydraulic fracturing, as its name implies, is no more nor less than the application of fluid pressure to create small cracks in {oil or gas bearing} rock & propping the crack open to ease the flow of the oil or gas into the well.”

                Your words, yes? Read from your comment above.

                Yup, you really need to adopt the alias I suggested.

                Happy Canada Day!


                  The apricots were shucked & packed on the farm, the wine bottled there.

                  “Hydraulic fracturing, as its name implies, is no more nor less than the application of fluid pressure to create small cracks in {oil or gas bearing} rock & propping the crack open to ease the flow of the oil or gas into the well.” – precise & accurate.

                  Neither 1,2,4-Trimethyl benzene nor 1,3,5-Trimethyl benzene are “benzene”, nor are concentrations of 0.003859% & 0.000772% additive concentrations, they are trace concentrations.

                  God save us from the (wilfully) ignorant. Happy 150th.


                    What a quaint view of commercial farming and processing. Sulphured apricots, picked, pitted and packed on the farm. Sure.

                    Not accurate and precise, as previously discussed, but I did fail to mention, small cracks, not true. The AER hosts a list of “communication events” in which the fracture propagations go out of zone. Bellatrix Exploration had one such event in which the fracture went over a kilometer.

                    Angle Energy (amalgamated with Bellatrix, now assets bought by Transglobe) left 831,050 litres of frac oil in the formation at 9-15 (16-16) and 554,940 in well 13-22, exact amounts of frac fluid left to recover from wells 14-15, 6-22 and 05-15 are not known as the company failed to document these amounts in completion reports. The additive concentrations, when calculated using the volumes of fracture fluid used and loads left to recover, represent thousands, to millions of litres for each component, trace amounts my tookus. This does not include the millions of litres that were incinerated in flow back events, or the lost circulation events. Also does not include the tonnes of VOC’s emitted from the compressors, routine venting, SCVF and fugitive emissions from these 5 wells.

                    Health Canada states there is no safe exposure to benzene and the compound is considered a ‘non-threshold toxicant’, where adverse health effects may occur at any exposure level. Medical Officers of Health from AHS, upon reviewing these frac reports categorized the 1,3,5 and 1,2,4 as benzene (so does the National Institute of Standards and Technology, PubChem et al) and were very concerned (yet did nothing) about the use of these additives in fracture fluids.

                    I suppose the good Lord needs to save you from yourself;)


      “If people wish to set up groups against things bringing income to their fellow citizens, it behooves them to know what they are about.”

      I wouldn’t worry your shilly little head over it. It wasn’t that long ago that residents of Canada’s oil and gas capital found themselves in the crosshairs of their own income-providing industry. So they mobilized, and ran the frac’ers out of their community. Seems Calgary residents that include oil and gas execs and employees who unexpectedly find themselves on the wrong end of a frac, aren’t that keen to crap where they sleep. Clearly they know all about it, and Cochrane’s only about 10 mins away.


        Didn’t seem like the Cochrane journalist who wrote ATL had the faintest idea.


          At the end of the day, the industry sums it up best …

          Feb 22, 2010 – “I don’t think that the actual optimum technology set for producing shale gas has yet been defined — at the moment, we are doing it by brute force and ignorance.”

          Andrew Gould – Former CEO Schlumberger

  • It’s just one more wonderful thing the Ralph Klein government did for us. Removing regulations that provided protection for the people. A friend now has gas in her water well when it was done in her area. It’s just a small amount in her well that she uses for her livestock, but now she has to get it tested more often than normal to make certain it doesn’t increase. It’s a well known fact that it created seven earthquakes in the Fox creek area. Don’t forget how the Klein government removed the regulations established by Lougheed that required oil corporations to pay companies to clean up well sites that were no longer in production, now Albertans are stuck with a $300 billion bill to do so. Not surprising Klein was all about looking after his rich friends. Then there is the Fort McMurray disaster. People tell us the Klein government eliminated the funding that had been in place to create a large fire break between the city and the forest. During the Klein, Stelmach and Redford administrations this fire break disappeared and it’s now costing Albertans $10 billions for this disaster. Yet we still hear some of our fellow seniors going around singing Ralph Klein’s praises while they shell out more and more of their money to pay for what he did to us. I had known the guy personally since 1964 and I can assure you I didn’t support this guy who always bragged about being a Liberal.,


      Fox Creek is the pilot for play based regulations, one play, one application, spanning the lifetime of exploration and production, in which the application under the PBR directive, is “less prescriptive” than what is currently submitted for a single well site. Insane.

      Just to clarify, since Jan 2015, there have been over 640 induced seismic events attributed to fracking operations in the MD. These can be viewed on an excel spreadsheet, on the AER website, within the Spotlight on Seismicity.


          Yep. Stuff as much “brute force and ignorance” into one application as they can, and rubber stamp it. Just what Albertans need; more health and financial risks.

          From the Mayor of Fox Creek:

          2016 – “The Town of Fox Creek is again in the media spotlight, claiming the record for the largest seismic event in Alberta. This is definitely not the publicity that Fox Creek is looking for as we try to attract families and businesses to our Town.

          We have been working with various government departments such as the AER to ensure that events such as this one do not happen in this area. We have been told by these government bodies that they have safe guards in place such as the traffic light system, but this does not seem to be working for us.

          We have had water shortages due to the water levels in our aquifers. In 2015, we had to haul potable [water] from surrounding communities just to supply drinking water to our residents at a cost in excess of $300,000.00 dollars, of which we were not assisted by industry or the provincial government.

          Recently we had a huge well blow out, again it made the news, but Fox Creek residents were the last ones to be notified by AER. A year and a half ago, we had a whistle blower inform us that a drilling rig had completed an improper cement job on well and that may affect the drinking water of Fox Creek.

          When we questioned those involved again the town was first told that it didnt happen as reported to us; and then that it did indeed happen but all was ok and they were sending inspectors out to investigate in a few days.

          We have been working closely with Industry asking for information on their planned work activities in this area so that we are aware of what is happening and are able to respond to inquiries and keep our residents informed.

          Fox Creek Town Council is very concerned, as it seems that Industry and the Provincial Government have been turning a blind eye as to what has been going on in our area. As mentioned earlier, we have met with AER and various Ministers to state our concerns.

          We have industry pulling water from our rivers, streams and lakes at rates we feel far exceed their capabilities to replenish themselves, and we do not want to be left with swamps that were once prize trophy lakes, or have good flowing rivers become just a trickle.

          … Our final project for 2016 will be to upgrade our water system at a cost of $15,000,000.00 dollars. This is to ensure we will have enough safe drinking water for our current residents and businesses and to supply the new ones that we are hoping will call Fox Creek home.

          Having said this, as we read the paper we see yet another world record set for Fox Creek for the largest earth quake in Alberta, then only to be told by some of the people we have been working with, calling to say they are unsure if Fox Creek is the place for them.”


          It makes Diana look rather stupid doesn’t it. As I said there is no need for it, so why do it? The oilmen I talk to certainly don’t agree with it.


          I think you misunderstand Fedup. My comment was in support of Diana’s, who I might add, is an extremely brilliant and courageous woman – with much integrity. And like Jessica Ernst, the Hawkwoods, the Campbells, and many other industry impacted families in this province who are graciously standing up and assisting us all – she shows us through her personal experience, and a tremendous amount of research – how the government and regulator-aided industry devastation will continue to metastisize and make our communities sicker – if we don’t wake the hell up and cut it out.

          Diana pointed out the AER’s government-blessed one play, one application, one-size-fracs-all blanket approval industry experiment happening in the Fox Creek area. My reply to her was just to expand on that and show some of the resulting, reported chaos – including the disgusting, habitual response and abandonment by industry, the government, and regulators. Communities continue to be devastated and hung out to dry.


            Thanks so much my Annie. I also believe we have a misunderstanding as to the nature of my comment. I am horrified by play based regulations and the impacts to Fox Creek, as we know those impacts intimately, much like many families, residents and landowners in Alberta.

            It should be noted, the AER released two Recurring Health Complaints Technical Synthesis, as mentioned in the article. One was prepared for the Lochend Region, the other Didsbury; the later is almost exclusively about our family. The AER used these “reports” to discredit resident claims of health harms, resulting from the exploration and production of unconventional well sites.

            It would be nearly impossible to express in short order all the misleading, inaccurate and omitted information that was presented by the AER in these two reports. In fact, the AER should be facing a review by numerous bodies, for releasing, distributing and publishing these reports as they did.

            For instance, the AER prepared the Didsbury report and then sent it to Synergy Alberta, (CMAG, SPOG) PAMZ, (industry funded air-shed group) two of our local councillors, Bruce Beattie and Al Kemmere (Pres of AAMDC) and also forwarded the report to BD&P, the law firm for Bellatrix Exploration (our legal action), without our knowledge, consent or involvement. The AER violated privacy, ethics and codes of conduct across many professional designations-engineers, doctors, and geoscientists-but they refused to remove these reports from the public domain at the request of all parties that were the target of these disgusting and scientifically absurd reports.

            Be forewarned fellow Albertans, if you submit a health concern regarding oil and gas operations by your home with the AER, they will use their bullying, almighty power to shame and discredit you, in a most horrific and untruthful manner. First they will just lie to you about the impacts, if you refuse to swallow their falsities, then you get a public shaming.

            Thanks Dr. Monique Dube, you sure are a special one!


              Isn’t it a wonder how certain “reports” are written, and released far and wide … like a tsunami of propaganda, lies and spam. And yet others, containing information on known life-threatening conditions to Albertans … are not released anywhere, or are “lost.”

              Do you think they’ll try and shame and discredit affected city residents before, or after, those residents suffer “neurological damage” and/or blow up in a spectacular explosion from industry’s known gas migration? I’m going to go with after … since the danger is already clear and present – but residents likely don’t know about it.

              June 28, 2017 – “Tyee obtains unreleased report that shows leaks pose threats to health, explosion risk.

              About 10 per cent of Alberta’s 1,500 abandoned oil and gas wells in urban areas are leaking methane, in some cases at levels that create the risk of health damage and explosions, according to an unreleased 2016 report.

              The unpublished study by the Alberta Energy Regulator, obtained by The Tyee, identified 335 urban wells that were ‘believed to be in close proximity to surface developments (houses, airports, business, etc.).’

              The 33-page study found that 36 of the abandoned wells were leaking methane. Nine of those wells were leaking at a level that Alberta Health says poses a risk of neurological damage to nearby residents.

              Six of them were leaking methane at more than 10,000 parts per million (ppm), a level deemed ‘life threatening’ by Alberta Health.

              … Approximately 1,100 abandoned wells in cities like Edmonton, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Airdrie and Calgary ‘still need to be located and tested for leakage,’ added the AER report.

              … According to a 2015 Alberta Health document titled ‘Methane from Leaking Abandoned Wells: Health and Safety Concerns’ also obtained by The Tyee, leaks of 1,000 ppm could result in neurological effects.

              Leaks above 10,000 ppm pose explosion risks and should prompt ’emergency evacuation,’ the Alberta Health report said.

              The Alberta government has not released the health and safety methane document. When The Tyee asked for a copy two months ago, ministry press secretary Laura Ehrkamp said officials couldn’t find it.

              The methane leakage study was prompted by new regulations in 2014 that directed industry to locate and test abandoned wells that may pose a risk to communities.

              It found that six wells that exceeded the emergency evacuation threshold of 10,000 ppm were outside buildings. Three other hazardous wells had ‘methane leakage inside buildings.’

              In addition the report noted another 53 abandoned wells out of the 1,500 that had been identified as ‘higher risk’ because of sour gas or acid content. ‘Licensees were directed to locate and test these wells,’ the report says. There was no information on the results.

              Although leaking methane from wells often travels with well-known public health hazards such as benzene, toluene, xylene and hydrogen sulfide (a potent neurotoxin), the AER study only measured methane.

              The methane toxicity study, never released to the public, was completed in November 2016.”


          ACORRDS May 13, 2017 Frack Conference Presentations:

June 1, 2017

As Andrew N. said in his talk quoting from a book (On Purity by Timothy Snyder):

“…somebody has to, it is easy to follow along; it can feel strange to say or do

something different but without that unease there is no freedom.

Remember Rosa Parks. The moment you set an example, the spell of the

status quo is broken.”

Andrew’s quote: And that is what Jessica has done for this province.

Marion’s quote: And that is what Jessica has done for every country, province and territory she is invited to speak in.

I’m so proud of you. I hope you are well, happy and active today and, at peace with yourself.


Marion Sampson

Port au Port/Bay St. George Fracking Awareness Group

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