The small town of Dimock, Pennsylvania has caused a national debate about the role of the EPA and hydraulic fracturing.   Dimock residences, a community of about 1,368 with one blinking traffic light, are left confused and with questions – Is our water safe and is hydraulic fracking the cause?  At first, the EPA said that the drinking water is safe. Then, the EPA turned around said that water wasn’t safe, finding methane in the ground water and ordering residence not to drink local water. Now, the EPA hasn’t decided whether or not to provide safe drinking water to the Dimock residence. 

 At this point, hydraulic fracturing is not to blame for the methane in the water.  Cabot Oil & Gas Corp, the fracking company located in Dimock, indicates that the water is safe according to on-site data analysis.  Although Cabot doesn’t admit blame for the methane in the water, Cabot decided to provide safe drinking water for Dimock families, installing water filters, and paying each affected family twice the value of their home.  The company put aside $4.1 million to for pay claims made by Dimock residence; 1.9 million claims have been made so far.

The EPA has already started efforts to build tighter regulations which will force disclosure of chemicals used in the fracking process, create regulations for air pollution from drilling, and develop a standard water treatment process.

More about methane migration – It’s difficult to tie a relationship between methane migration and hydraulic fracturing of Marcellus Shall because it’s difficult to determine where the methane originated from.  Methane is located deep underground, but can rise up close to the surface and make its way into groundwater supplies.  In order to prevent methane from rising up, three layers of steel casings are required on Marcellus wells.