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PennEnvironment Research and Policy Center
Metro Philadelphia

Penn. fracking is too close to children, environmentalists warn

An environmental research group said hundreds of children's facilities are in close proximity to fracking operations, potentially exposing them to environmental hazards.
Sam Newhouse

From the Metro Philadelphia article:

An environmental research group's latest report said ongoing fracking operations may be causing health risks for children who live and play nearby.

The report found 45 schools and 54 child care providers were located within half a mile of fracking wells. If the radius were expanded to two miles, that number would go up to 476 schools and 467 child care providers. PennEnvironment estimated that statewide more than 53,000 children under age 10 lived within a mile of a permitted fracking well site.


David Masur, executive director of PennEnvironment, said while there are no specific cases of children sickened by proximity to fracking in the report, scientific evidence strongly suggests fracking puts these children at risk 

"It is often hard to connect any one environmental factor with health problems... it's a little like asking which is the one cigarette that gives someone lung cancer," he said.

PennEnvironment and health experts who reviewed and signed the report recommend policies including a one-mile border between fracking operations and schools, hospitals, nursing care facilities or child care providers, creating a public health registry for individuals to report issues associated with fracking, and banning open-air waste pits used to store flowback water used in fracking.