Radioactive Drill Cuttings and WV Landfills

Drill cuttings at a well pad in north-central West Virginia, awaiting transport to a landfill. Photo by Bill Hughes

Drill cuttings at a well pad in north-central West Virginia, awaiting transport to a landfill. Photo by Bill Hughes

Trucks with drill cuttings line up at a WV landfill. Photo by Bill Hughes

Trucks with drill cuttings line up at a WV landfill. Photo by Bill Hughes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the end of June, WV DEP released a report prepared for the agency by researchers at Marshall and Glenville State universities titled: Examination of Leachate, Drill Cuttings and Related Environmental, Economic and Technical Aspects Associated with Solid Waste Facilities in West Virginia

The report is 195 pages long, with more than 2300 pages of supporting data and graphs. Fortunately, Bill Hughes, chairman of the Wetzel County Solid Waste Authority has provided some analysis of certain aspects of the report, which you can read below. Hughes notes that it would be useful to have independent analyses from scientists, such as those with specialties in biology and chemistry.

In his commentary of the report, Hughes writes, “Wetzel County has had active Marcellus black shale exploration and drilling for at least eight years now. And finally we now have a public report that clearly, unambiguously states that Marcellus shale is radioactive. Of course, geologists have known that for many decades. But, also for decades, there has been great reluctance by the natural gas exploration and production companies to acknowledge that fact in public.”

Read Hughes’ full commentary:

WJH-Comments-Rev-E-WJH-on-Marshall-landfill-report

News on the report:
July 1: WVa study: Drill waste in landfills unlikely to get in water, but could exceed drinking limits
July 2: WV DEP: Untreated gas drilling waste in landfills doesn’t likely affect water sources (but it could…)
July 10, 2015: Parkersburg landfill used in DEP tests on gas drill cuttings

Earlier news on Marcellus Shale drill cuttings and WV landfills:
April 12, 2015: Fracking Waste Study Says States Aren’t Doing Enough to Protect Public
August 4, 2014: Concerns Over Radioactive Waste Going Into WV Landfills
June 20, 2014: WV Landfill Chair: State Too Eager For Shale Waste
January 28, 2014: Fracking Waste: What Is It & What Do We Do About It

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