Salting the Earth: The Environmental Impact of Oil and Gas Wastewater Spills

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For five days in July 2014, a broken pipe spilled more than one million gallons of wastewater produced by unconventional oil drilling into a steep ravine filled with natural springs and beaver dams on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation.

Researchers, including members of the Reston Biogeochemical Processes in Groundwater Laboratory, assessed the potential impacts of this and other similar releases on the health of humans and the environment.

Read the full article here.

USGS scientist drills through the ice covering a river using a motorized auger

Even in the winter, USGS scientists collect water-quality samples which are made possible by power ice augers. USGS scientists are investigating effects of a large unconventional oil and gas (UOF) brine wastewater spill into tributaries of the Missouri River, in North Dakota.