Ohio: A Fracking Waste Dumping Ground?

Toxic fracking waste from out of state

Fracking waste generated in the region has increased 540 percent since 2004.

  • Fracking produces enormous amounts of waste contaminated with toxic chemicals, heavy metals, corrosive salts and radioactive material.
  • In 2011, Ohio dumped 12.8 million barrels of toxic, radioactive waste into injection wells—injecting toxic waste into the ground as a means of disposing it.
  • Over half of Ohio’s waste is imported from Pennsylvania and West Virginia, making our state the region’s dumping ground.
  • Hazardous fracking waste can be put into municipal water treatment plants, dumped into landfills, left in open pits, and even spread on roads as de-icer.

A wave of waste from Pennsylvania

From September 2012 to January 2013, Hardrock Excavating LLC dumped at least 252,000 barrels of toxic fracking waste directly into a tributary of Youngstown’s Mahoning River.The incident highlighted the growing threats to our environment as Ohio fracking operations create more and more fracking waste—and as the state imports millions of barrels more from Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

After Pennsylvania moved to strengthen its fracking waste rules in 2010, drillers found it cheaper and easier to dispose of their hazardous waste in Ohio. Industry lobbyists got fracking waste exempt from federal hazardous waste laws, leaving Ohio even more vulnerable. Across the region, fracking waste has increased a staggering 540 percent since 2004, with more being produced each year.

No more fracking waste

There is no good way to dispose of fracking waste. And Ohio should not be the region's dumping ground for this toxic waste. Through our reports and education campaigns, Environment Ohio Research & Policy Center is working to expose the harmful effects of fracking waste in our state.

Issue updates

News Release | Environment Ohio

Children and Elderly at Risk from “Dangerous and Close” Fracking

There are 58 schools and childcare facilities within one mile of a fracked oil or gas well in Ohio, putting children at increased risk of health impacts from dangerous chemicals and air pollution.

> Keep Reading
Report | Environment Ohio Research & Policy Center

Fracking by the Numbers

The combination of two technologies – hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling – has enabled the oil and gas industry to engage in an effort to unlock oil and gas in underground rock formations across the United States. “Fracking,” however, has also led to tremendous environmental harm and put the health and safety of communities across the country at risk.

> Keep Reading
Report | Environment Ohio Research and Policy Center

Shalefield Stories

Across the country, fracking is contaminating drinking water, making nearby families sick with air pollution, and turning forest acres into industrial zones. We believe it is vital for the public to hear directly from people living on the frontlines of fracking, and so Environment America Research & Policy Center is supporting the Shalefield Stories project—a booklet designed and published by local activists where people impacted by fracking tell their stories, in their own words.

> Keep Reading
Report | Environment Ohio Research & Policy Center

Fracking by the Numbers

Over the past decade, the oil and gas industry has fused two technologies—hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling—in a highly polluting effort to unlock oil and gas in underground rock formations across the United States.

> Keep Reading
News Release | Environment Ohio Research & Policy Center

Fracking by the Numbers: New Report from Environment Ohio Research and Policy Center First to Quantify Damage Done by Gas Drilling

Youngstown, OH — As many Ohioans consider community bans on drilling and state officials demand disclosure of fracking chemicals, a new report charges that Ohio drilling operations are  producing 30 million gallons of wastewater each year – enough to flood the Ohio statehouse under 90 feet of toxic waste. The Environment Ohio Research & Policy Center report "Fracking by the Numbers" is the first of its kind to measure the footprint of fracking in Ohio to date.

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