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Monday, April 25, 2011

EPA investigating Marcellus fracking spill in Bradford County

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is investigating the spill of drilling fluids at a Chesapeake Energy site in Bradford County last week.

Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection is investigating the spill, but the EPA wants information too.

According to a press release Monday afternoon, the EPA issued an “information request,” authorized under three federal statutes, to Chesapeake Energy officials on Friday.

“We want a complete accounting of operations at the site to determine our next steps in this incident and to help prevent future releases of this kind,” said EPA Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin.

The New York Times has reported an internal battle within the federal EPA over whether or not to intercede in Pennsylvania.

Among the things the EPA wants to know: substances placed into or returned to the surface from the wells at the site, whether radiological compounds are or were present in the fluids, effects on any drinking water supplies and a listing of each chemical brought to the site, including type and quantities and storage, management and handling practices.

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