Target: Wyoming Governor Matthew H. Mead
Goal: Support legislation that improves the safety and accountability of oil and gas companies’ operations.
Wyoming recently adopted regulations that will require oil and gas companies to test well and spring water before and after drilling, within half a mile of all drilling sites. The new regulations are largely inspired by environmental and health issues brought on by the increased use of fracking, a technique for extracting oil or gas by using high-pressure injections of water, sand, and unknown blends of carcinogenic and toxic chemicals. Please voice your support for this common-sense regulation, which helps protect the citizens of Wyoming from contaminated drinking water.
With around half a million active gas wells in the U.S., each being injected with around 72 trillion gallons of water and 360 billion gallons of chemicals, it is not surprising that groundwater has become contaminated. The secret blends of chemicals the oil and gas companies use are known to include carcinogens and toxins including lead, mercury, and uranium. More than half of this non-biodegradable, toxic blend is left in the ground, and most of the remainder is removed and placed in open-air pits to evaporate and contaminate the atmosphere.
In spite of the tremendous political, financial, and lobbying efforts of the oil and gas companies, investigators have documented thousands of cases of contaminated water next to drilling sites and related cases of sensory, respiratory, and neurological damage due to drinking this water. Clearly, water testing will not prevent all of the ill effects of fracking; however, Wyoming’s new water testing rule is the strongest in the country and a model for other states. Texas and North Dakota have no water testing requirements, despite being the top two oil-drilling states. Other large oil-drilling states such as Colorado and Ohio have paltry requirements. Pathetically, many states only encourage water testing.
By signing the petition below you are supporting the ongoing effort to limit the harmful effects of dangerous and uncontrolled drilling.
Dear Governor Matthew H. Mead,
I wish to commend you and your state of Wyoming for your efforts to improve the safety and accountability of energy production. The new water testing regulation for fracking has been hailed as a model for the country. Regulations requiring oil and gas companies to disclose some of their fracking chemicals, monitor for certain air pollutants, and reduce emissions during drilling are also important victories in fulfilling your responsibility to protect the health and safety of your citizens.
As an advocate for not sacrificing a clean environment to energy company profit, you are no doubt well aware that the struggle is not over. The water contamination disputes in Pavillion, Wyoming remain unresolved. The case before the Wyoming Supreme Court regarding mandatory disclosure of all fracking ingredients is being watched closely across the nation. A recent explosion in a gas field in Western Wyoming has injured five workers and raised new safety concerns.
You and Wyoming are thus uniquely and opportunely positioned to lead the country on this important issue. Please continue to advocate for safe and accountable drilling practices and for the immediate and long-term safety and health of the citizens of Wyoming.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: The Pinedale Field office of the BLM via Wikimedia Commons