An Accident That Was Waiting to Happen

You’ve all heard, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. That is bad but now we have something even worse. That is the rich getting richer at the cost of the poor being put at health risk, and even death. The rich have always gotten richer from war and the poor were the ones who were maimed and killed in those wars. Now we have corporations that pollute jeopardizing the health of people and the planet. The richest family in my community has put our whole township in danger. They are Kleese Development Associates (KDA) a family run and operated oil and gas company.  They now have waste water injection wells on the site of their former family farm. They are located about a mile from my house. Some of the neighbors have complained about the semi trucks that bring waste water to the site. The trucks are destroying the roads and causing potholes. Potholes are the least of my worries compared to spills and leaks that could contaminate our community. Many people in the area have private wells for their water supply; they are worried about contaminated wells.

The worst of my fears has happened: Chemical spill in Vienna.

This from WKBN TV News, “Sources with the Ohio EPA said at least 2,000 gallons were spilled into a tributary of Little Yankee Run on Thursday. State officials said oil traveled 3,000 feet downstream. The state says the problem might have been going on for some time, but winter ice and snow hid the issues.”

Here are some photos taken by a member of Frackfree Mahoning Valley of the spill from the Protect Youngstown Facebook page.

When this waste water fracking injection started some people in my community of Vienna, Ohio had concerns. Many people think the EPA and other such agencies have lots of oversight and won’t let anything harmful happen. A Youngstown fracktivist called me today because this spill happened in my neighborhood. I went to the site of the spill to join several fracktivists and meet John the homeowner whose pond was polluted. John said he called the Ohio Environmental Agency Hotline in Columbus on Monday about the spill (in the link above). He informed them he was concerned because he lived across from an injection well. He was also worried because he has a well instead of city water and feared contaminated water. The Columbus EPA seemed in no hurry to help John so a few days later he called local Ohio EPA officials. They claimed they were powerless to do anything as these kinds of problems are handled by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. On Thursday John finally had officials come and see the problem. While these agencies were slow to react I want to thank some local activist that came to give John and his family advice and support. I want to thank; Susie Biersdorfer, John Williams, Doug Fowler and other members of Frackfree Mahoning Valley for doing that.

Valley residents were told that fracking was going to be a big boom to our area. It seems now wells in our valley are being capped off and not developed on the land that was purchased to drill on. Vallourec that makes pipe used in the fracking process has had major layoffs.

Under the layoff link is a comment by oldstown. He says, “Beginning of the end…thanks so much to the war on fracking. I swear the environazis in this country won’t be happy until every last job is gone.” I note when I went to John’s polluted property today I didn’t see oldstown. I did see “environazis” Susie, Doug, John and other members of Frackfre Mahoning Valley. Oldstown has made 239 comments on (the Youngstown Vindicator webpage). I note all of the comments are negative about our area. Oldstown and his conservative ilk are what is holding back progress in our area. We have had earthquakes and spills from fracking and oldstown thinks anti-frackers are the problem? Folks like oldstown have all kinds of time to complain but not one second to lend a hand. Can I steal the conservative banter and say, “Love it or leave it oldstown?”

The boom seems over and here in Vienna we are stuck with the bust. By that I mean the busted pipe that has polluted a pond owned by John the neighbor of the waste water injection site.

My son who lives in Texas sent me some interesting info on fracking. He noted, “On Huston radio, they had a longtime oil man saying a lot of these Fracking companies were running more debt than revenue, even before oil prices dropped.” He added, “Fracking is ridiculously unprofitable, especially if you subtract the government subsidies they get. A barrel of oil, worth $35 now, costs $88 to produce.” That means we taxpayers are shelling out $53 to let the oil company make $35. This makes no economic sense and at the same time is destroying our planet. I say fracking is a war on the people for the greed of the corporations. We taxpayers are subsidizing fracking while it is destroying our health.

I want to thank all of the fracktivists that came out in June of 2012 to protest the dangers of the wells at Kleese’s farm in Vienna. I did not know of the event at the time or I would have attended. After the demonstration KDA put up no trespassing signs. It is Easter and I am reminded Jesus gave up his life for our sins. I am not willing to give up my life or my families so that wealthy families like; the Walton’s, Koch Brothers or the Kleese family can get wealthier. We shouldn’t have to pay for their sins of greed.

I’m left wondering what the Vienna Township officials are planning on doing to keep our community safe. Their monthly meetings are held the first Monday of every month at 7:00 pm at the Vienna Town Hall. This Monday the meeting will instead be held at Mathews High School. It will begin at 6pm with the first hour being a talk about the spill. The regular 7pm meeting will begin after that.

I’ll be there this Monday and I hope I see some of you there also.

Happy Easter!

The economics of fracking.

The fracking bubble is over.

Nebraska farmer silences oil and gas committee.

Keiser Report: “Fracking Flop”

“Fracking Song”

Leo Sayers: “No Fracking Way”

“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together … all things connect.” —Chief Seattle



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2 responses to “An Accident That Was Waiting to Happen

  1. Bonnie

    Jim you are so right about this. Never wanted fracking,never thought it was good for the environment. All people care about is money,then 20 years down the road it will be like the asbestos problem.

  2. elecpencil

    Couldn’t agree more but I think that 20 years is already starting to show.

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