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EPA's Study of Hydraulic Fracturing and Its Potential Impact on Drinking Water Resources

Review of Well Operator Files for Hydraulically Fractured Oil and Gas Production Wells: Hydraulic Fracturing Operations

Boyd et al. EPA Report. July 2016. 

Summary

EPA conducted a survey of oil and gas production wells hydraulically fractured by nine oil and gas service companies in the United States during 2009 and 2010. The objective of this report was to explore, for the wells represented in the study, the role of the following factors in subsurface fluid movement during hydraulic fracturing:

  1. the ability of the hydraulically fractured production well to transport fluids through the well to and from the targeted rock formation without leaking and to prevent fluid movement along the outside of the well (i.e., the mechanical integrity of the well), and
  2. the potential intersection of newly-created fractures with underground drinking water resources or nearby existing pathways (e.g., faults or nearby production wells).
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