USGS Study: Pike County Water has Methane, Radon – No Drilling

who knew?In the summer of 2012, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) began a groundwater survey in Pike County, PA. Pike, located in northeastern PA, is one of the counties with the dubious distinction of being under the regulatory purview of the Delaware River Basin Commission which has, so far, refused to allow any Marcellus Shale drilling. The survey’s purpose is to provide baseline numbers prior to any Marcellus drilling activity. So, just to be clear, there has been NO drilling thus far in Pike nor anywhere near Pike. And yet, what did the USGS survey, published in July 2014 (full copy below) show? Some 80% of the water wells tested in Pike have “detectable concentrations of methane” and 10% of the wells (2 of the 20 tested) have high levels of methane. Not only that, 85% (!) of the wells tested have (gasp) really high radon levels–over the proposed safe limit of 300 picocuries per liter. One well was as high as 4,500 picocuries! But it gets worse–there’s also measurable quantities of nasty stuff like barium, strontium, and the dreaded chloride (salt). And yet, not a Marcellus Shale well in sight. Now how can that be?…

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