Field Survey of Health Perception and Complaints of Pennsylvania Residents in the Marcellus Shale Region

Abstract Pennsylvania Marcellus Shale region residents have reported medical symptoms they believe are related to nearby Unconventional Natural Gas Development (UNGD). Associations between medical symptoms and UNGD have been minimally explored. The objective of this descriptive study is to explore whether shale region Pennsylvania residents perceive UNGD as a health concern and whether they attribute […]

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Environmental Public Health Dimensions of Shale and Tight Gas Development

Abstract Background: The United States has experienced a boom in natural gas production due to recent technological innovations that have enabled this resource to be produced from shale formations. Objectives: This review discusses the body of evidence that focuses on exposure pathways to evaluate the potential environmental public health impacts of shale gas development. It highlights […]

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Understanding exposure from natural gas drilling puts current air standards to the test

Abstract Case study descriptions of acute onset of respiratory, neurologic, dermal, vascular, abdominal, and gastrointestinal sequelae near natural gas facilities contrast with a subset of emissions research, which suggests that there is limited risk posed by unconventional natural gas development (UNGD). An inspection of the pathophysiological effects of acute toxic actions reveals that current environmental […]

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Planning For Fracking on the Barnett Shale: Urban Air Pollution, Improving Health Based Regulation, and the Role of Local Governments

Abstract In the last decade hydraulic fracturing for natural gas has exploded on the Barnett Shale in Texas. The region is now home to the most intensive hydraulic fracking and gas production activities ever undertaken in densely urbanized areas. Faced with minimal state and federal regulation, Texas cities are on the front line in the […]

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Oil and gas wells and their integrity: Implications for shale and unconventional resource exploitation*

Abstract Data from around the world (Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Brazil, Canada, the Netherlands, Poland, the UK and the USA) show that more than four million onshore hydrocarbon wells have been drilled globally. Here we assess all the reliable datasets (25) on well barrier and integrity failure in the published literature and online. These datasets include […]

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Highly Elevated Atmospheric Levels of Volatile Organic Compounds in the Uintah Basin, Utah

Abstract Oil and natural gas production in the Western United States has grown rapidly in recent years, and with this industrial expansion, growing environmental concerns have arisen regarding impacts on water supplies and air quality. Recent studies have revealed highly enhanced atmospheric levels of volatile organic compounds (VOC) from primary emissions in regions of heavy […]

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PSE Study Citation Database on Shale Gas & Tight Oil Development

This citation database provides bibliographic information, abstracts, and links to many of the vetted scientific papers housed in the PSE Healthy Energy Library, as well as other peer-reviewed journal articles. This database is a near exhaustive and evolving list of the peer-reviewed literature that directly pertains to shale gas and tight oil development. This literature […]

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Potential Public Health Hazards, Exposures and Health Effects from Unconventional Natural Gas Development

Abstract The rapid increase in unconventional natural gas (UNG) development in the United States during the past decade has brought wells and related infrastructure closer to population centers. This review evaluates risks to public health from chemical and nonchemical stressors associated with UNG, describes likely exposure pathways and potential health effects, and identifies major uncertainties […]

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Birth Outcomes and Maternal Residential Proximity to Natural Gas Development in Rural Colorado

Abstract Background: Birth defects are a leading cause of neonatal mortality. Natural gas development (NGD) emits several potential teratogens and US production is expanding. Objectives: We examined associations between maternal residential proximity to NGD and birth outcomes in a retrospective cohort study of 124,842 births between 1996 and 2009 in rural Colorado. Methods: We calculated inverse distance weighted […]

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Estrogen and Androgen Receptor Activities of Hydraulic Fracturing Chemicals and Surface and Ground Water in a Drilling-Dense Region

Abstract The rapid rise in natural gas extraction utilizing hydraulic fracturing increases the potential for contamination of surface and ground water from chemicals used throughout the process. Hundreds of products containing more than 750 chemicals and components are potentially used throughout the extraction process, including over one hundred known or suspected endocrine disrupting chemicals. We […]

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The role of ethics in shale gas policies

Abstract The United States has experienced a boom in natural gas production due to recent technological innovations that have enabled natural gas to be produced from unconventional sources, such as shale. There has been much discussion about the costs and benefits of developing shale gas among scientists, policy makers, and the general public. The debate […]

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Air quality in the Industrial Heartland of Alberta, Canada and potential impacts on human health

Abstract The “Industrial Heartland” of Alberta is Canada’s largest hydrocarbon processing center, with more than 40 major chemical, petrochemical, and oil and gas facilities. Emissions from these industries affect local signair quality and human health. This paper characterizes ambient levels of 77 volatile organic compounds sign(VOCs) in the region using high-precision measurements collected in summer 2010. Remarkably strong enhancements […]

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An Evaluation of Water Quality in Private Drinking Water Wells Near Natural Gas Extraction Sites in the Barnett Shale Formation

Abstract Natural gas has become a leading source of alternative energy with the advent of techniques to economically extract gas reserves from deep shale formations. Here, we present an assessment of private well water quality in aquifers overlying the Barnett Shale formation of North Texas. We evaluated samples from 100 private drinking water wells using […]

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Challenges of Unconventional Shale Gas Development: So What’s the Rush?

Abstract The article discusses unconventional shale gas development (UGD) as of July 2013, focusing on U.S. natural gas production and the impact of UGD on energy utilization in America. Funding by the U.S. Department of Energy for shale gas extraction research and development is mentioned, along with water pollution and the direct health and environmental […]

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Differing Opinions about Natural Gas Drilling in Two Adjacent Counties with Different Levels of Drilling Activity

Abstract The pace of development of shale gas plays varies greatly among US states and globally. Through analysis of telephone survey responses, we explore support for natural gas drilling in residents of Washington County (WC), PA (n=502) vs. residents of Allegheny County (AC), PA (n=799). WC has had intense Marcellus Shale (MS) drilling activity, in […]

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Assessment and longitudinal analysis of health impacts and stressors perceived to result from unconventional shale gas development in the Marcellus Shale region

Abstract Introduction: Concerns for health and social impacts have arisen as a result of Marcellus Shale unconventional natural gas development. Our goal was to document the self-reported health impacts and mental and physical health stressors perceived to result from Marcellus Shale development.Methods: Two sets of interviews were conducted with a convenience sample of community members living proximal […]

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Increased stray gas abundance in a subset of drinking water wells near Marcellus shale gas extraction

Abstract Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing are transforming energy production, but their potential environmental effects remain controversial. We analyzed 141 drinking water wells across the Appalachian Plateaus physiographic province of northeastern Pennsylvania, examining natural gas concentrations and isotopic signatures with proximity to shale gas wells. Methane was detected in 82% of drinking water samples, with […]

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Exposure to Chemicals and Radiation During Childhood and Risk for Cancer Later in Life

Abstract Purpose: Many chemical carcinogens are in food, water, air, household products, and personal care products. Although genetic susceptibility is an important factor in how an individual responds to exposure to a carcinogen, heritable genetic factors alone account for only a minor portion of cancer rates. Methods: We review the evidence that early life exposure […]

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Traffic-Related Air Pollution, Particulate Matter, and Autism

Abstract Context: Autism is a heterogeneous disorder with genetic and environmental factors likely contributing to its origins. Examination of hazardous pollutants has suggested the importance of air toxics in the etiology of autism, yet little research has examined its association with local levels of air pollution using residence-specific exposure assignments. Objective: To examine the relationship […]

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