Category Archives: OIL/GAS exploration

Some things that will happen when Sethusundarum is busy with OIL/GAS exploration.

Some things that will happen when Sethusundarum is busy with OIL/GAS exploration.
Little Unknown Facts about Petroleum.
1. I am bit proactive and when the next budget of ours comes boomeranging to us there is nothing exciting to declare but I am sure they will say they hit the biggest ( but how big they won’t say) deposit of GAS/OIL to divert the attention of the voter.
2. Extract and refining takes a big toll on water.
That is what I am focusing below.
It will be in little doses since I have 12 months to explore.
Fossil-fuel extraction and processing can lead to contamination of sources of drinking water with a wide variety of contaminants that threaten human health. When drinking water is contaminated, communities have three basic choices:
(1) find an alternative source of water,
(2) treat water before drinking it, or
(3) drink contaminated water and risk adverse health outcomes.
Often, alternative water sources can be much more expensive; for example, in the United States bottled water can be thousands of times more expensive than tap water or may require traveling long distances at a high energy cost (Gleick and Cooley 2009).
In addition to being costly, using bottled water also requires being able to lift and transport the bottles, resulting in disproportionate hardship for the elderly, disabled, and poor.
The major human community impacts associated with fossil-fuel refining, processing, and use are related to air quality.
However, all of these processes can also contaminate drinking water sources with a variety of toxins.
In the state of São Paulo, Brazil, for example, improper disposal of toxics at a petrochemical facility caused contamination of nearby drinking water wells (Harden et al. 2002). In the U.S., one estimate puts releases of petroleum by-products by oil refineries at 50,000 barrels per day; about a quarter of total petroleum refining toxic releases in the U.S. are to water systems (O’Rourke and Connolly 2003).
A growing concern is the link between hydraulic fracturing, a process that injects water mixed with a complex and often proprietary blend of chemicals to enhance methane recovery, and contamination of drinking water supplies with benzene, methane, radiation, and other chemicals. Although practitioners claim there is no conclusive evidence to link fracking to contamination of surface-water and groundwater supplies, critics claim that more than 1,000 cases of such contamination can be traced to fracking, as well as to incidental surface spills and leaks of fracking chemicals (Lustgarten 2008, Urbina 2011).
Fracking also can create links between natural gas itself and groundwater, in some instances increasing methane concentrations in drinking water to such an extent that tap water can be ignited. From the limited information on chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing that is available, either through voluntary disclosure or in states that require disclosure, we know that chemicals that can potentially cause respiratory problems or harm to the nervous and reproductive systems are used (Berkowitz 2009).
Recent U.S. Geological Survey research has found evidence for a link between Balkan Endemic Neuropathy (BEN) and coal mining. BEN is a degenerative kidney disease that occurs in clusters in rural villages in the Balkan Peninsula and eventually leads to complete kidney failure. An estimated 25,000 people currently suffer from this disease, which was first described medically in 1956 (USGS 2001). However, the cause of the disease is still not known for certain. Patients with BEN also have a high occurrence of normally rare upper urinary tract cancers.
Acid precipitation causes a host of ecological impacts, especially to aquatic resources.
Acid precipitation—primarily generated by coal combustion—can increase the mobility of aluminum and other metals in aquatic systems, leading to mortality of fish and Coal mining has been linked to severe drinking water contamination in many coal mining regions. For example, in the state of Orissa, India, communities’ drinking water was contaminated as a result of coal mining and processing activities. Women are particularly at risk for adverse health effects resulting from exposure to this contaminated water, as they are responsible for many household activities that involve contact with water, such as collecting the water, washing clothes and utensils, and bathing children(Murthy and Patra 2006). Some villages were even forced to relocate after groundwater was contaminated due to coal mining activities (Murthy and Patra 2006).
In the U.S.,coal mining in the Appalachian region has led to contamination of groundwater drinking supplies.