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Area towns targeted for EPA study

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The Environmental Protection Agency recently released a draft plan to study the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing on water resources that identifies the towns of Flower Mound and Bartonville as possible study sites.

The EPA report indicates that areas to be investigated in the Barnett Shale include the potential for water well contamination and the likelihood of spills, leaks, and runoff transporting contaminants.

In order to research these issues, the EPA will establish a baseline water quality data report and will then conduct comprehensive monitoring and modeling of water resources during all stages of the hydraulic fracturing process.

“I am so excited that our efforts with the EPA have paid off,” said Flower Mound Mayor Melissa Northern. “We felt Flower Mound met the criteria with the current drilling in our community. Our staff and many residents continued to pursue the EPA to select Flower Mound.  Thanks to everyone who worked to have our town selected.”

Flower Mound does not utilize local groundwater wells as a source of drinking water, and while continual testing has identified no concerns with the town’s water, town officials said that they welcome the additional EPA analysis as an added level of protection.

Mayor Northern testified in front of an EPA committee in 2010 and requested that the community be added to their list of testing sites.

“We were lucky to be chosen to participate in this process. We want the EPA to conduct studies here because we take the stewardship of our natural resources seriously. Even though local drilling has not contaminated our drinking water, it could impact our groundwater resources,” said Mayor Northern. “If any industry in Denton County is impacting our natural resources, we want to know about it and be able to address it. This will help us ensure that the industries conducting business here do it correctly.” 

The EPA report indicates that Flower Mound would be earmarked for Prospective Case Studies, which are conducted at locations where no contamination has been reported. Retrospective Case Studies are conducted at locations where possible contamination has already occurred.

See the draft EPA plan to study hydraulic fracturing here: http://yosemite.epa.gov/sab/sabproduct.nsf/02ad90b136fc21ef85256eba00436459/d3483ab445ae61418525775900603e79!OpenDocument&TableRow=2.0#2

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