Residual Waste from Marcellus Shale Development Contains Brine and Radioactive Elements

by admin on September 1, 2023

Radioactive strontium can bioaccumulate in freshwater mussels, for example


From the Report by Resources For The Future, June 27, 2013

Preliminary Conclusions Regarding Wastewater from Marcellus Shale Gas Development Listed Here:

• High chemical concentrations are observed pre- treatment, emphasizing need for effective treatment.

• When barium is detected (92% of samples), median concentration is > 40 times Pennsylvania’s wastewater effluent standard and > 200 times the SDWA maximum contaminant level for barium.

• Concentrations of chloride, TDS, bromide, radium-228 and strontium in pretreatment wastewater are also far higher than either wastewater effluent standards or drinking water standards.

• Wastewater composition is highly variable over the course of the shale gas extraction process — a challenge for effective treatment and management.

• Form26 filed once/year/waste type/generating location – constituent concentrations could vary even within this temporal/spatial window.

• Produced water has very different composition than flowback, typically having higher chloride, TDS and radium-228 concentrations. Obviously more difficult to recycle, requiring different technology/higher costs.

• Many constituents may be effectively removed by chemical waste treatment facilities currently treating this waste (e.g., metals); others may not (e.g., salts).

• Further research on potential risks from wastewater treatment and release to rivers and streams is warranted.

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