Oil & Gas Waste
Why is Oil and Gas Waste a Big Issue?
Unconventional oil and gas development (fracking) produces vast amounts of waste. This waste comes in the form of brine and drill cuttings, both brought up from deep shale layers that can contain high amounts of uranium. Despite the potential presence of radioactivity, this waste is classified as residual waste and permitted to be disposed of in landfills and injection wells. This waste is often transported by trucks or barged. Oil and gas waste creates serious health concerns for residents living near sites that accept this waste as well as potential contamination from spills and accidents during transportation.
What is leachate?
Leachate is the result of rainwater and moisture seeping through waste at a landfill and leaching chemicals, organic matter, and other particles from the waste. When landfills accept oil and gas waste, radioactive constituents can contaminate the leachate. However, the leachate is classified as residual waste at the landfill and sewage treatment plants. It is not treated for potential radioactive materials, leaving concerns that discharged treated water could be polluting rivers and streams.
Learn more about the hazards of leachate and how Protect PT is advocating for residents who have been impacted more than 10 years on our leachate page.