SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION No. 150
STATE OF NEW JERSEY
INTRODUCED NOVEMBER 26, 2018
Senator CHRISTOPHER "KIP" BATEMAN
District 16 (Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex and Somerset)
Senator LINDA R. GREENSTEIN
District 14 (Mercer and Middlesex)
Urges Governor to block proposed rules permitting import of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing into Delaware River Basin and export of water from basin for hydraulic fracturing; urges Governor to ban hydraulic fracturing in basin.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
As reported by the Senate Environment and Energy Committee on December 3, 2018, with amendments.
A Concurrent Resolution urging the Governor to block a proposed rule that would permit the storage, treatment, disposal, and discharge of wastewater generated from hydraulic fracturing within the Delaware River Basin 1and the export of water from the basin to be used in hydraulic fracturing; and urging the Governor to support rules that would permanently prohibit hydraulic fracturing in the basin1.
Whereas, Hydraulic fracturing, also known as “fracking,” is the process of injecting water, sand, and other chemicals at high pressure into a bedrock formation in order to stimulate the flow of natural gas or oil, increasing the volumes of those materials that can be recovered; and
Whereas, Drilling companies have been less than forthcoming in revealing the cocktail of chemicals they use in the hydraulic fracturing process, and the volumes of those chemicals, often claiming that this information is a trade secret; and
Whereas, Records released by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in response to a Freedom of Information Act request indicate that these chemicals could have serious health effects on humans, including irritation to skin and lungs, liver toxicity, developmental toxicity, and neurotoxicity; and
Whereas, The EPA has also found that more than 1,400 chemicals found in hydraulic fracturing fluid or wastewater lack high quality toxicity information, making it impossible to know the true effects of hydraulic fracturing on human health and the environment; and
Whereas, During the process of hydraulic fracturing, millions of gallons of contaminated water, as well as wastewater solids, sludge, drill cuttings, and other byproducts, flow back out of the well, and must be stored, treated, disposed of, and discharged; and
Whereas, High concentrations of solids present in hydraulic fracturing wastewater may include calcium, magnesium, phosphates, nitrates, sulfates, chloride, barium, cadmium, strontium, dissolved organics such as benzene and toluene, and copper; and
Whereas, No 1[federal or]1 State standards have been adopted governing the treatment and disposal of hydraulic fracturing waste; and
Whereas, The EPA has noted that radioactive materials have been found in “fairly high concentrations” in hydraulic fracturing wastewater, posing a risk to public drinking water supplies since wastewater treatment plants are not designed to treat for radioactivity; and
1Whereas, Hydraulic fracturing also releases large amounts of methane, a greenhouse gas 86 times more potent than carbon dioxide on a 20-year timescale, into the atmosphere, contributing to climate change; and1
Whereas, The Delaware River Basin, which includes parts of four 1[States] states1, 42 counties, and 838 municipalities, supplies drinking water to 15 million people, including 1[seven million people in New York City and northern New Jersey who live outside the basin] 2.9 million people in New Jersey1; and
Whereas, The Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) is the interstate agency responsible for the oversight and management of all water resources within the geographical boundaries of the Delaware River Basin; and
Whereas, The DRBC consists of five members, which include the governors of the four basin states (Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania) and a representative from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; and
1Whereas, The DRBC manages the waters of the basin to ensure that the water supply, aquatic ecosystems, and recreational resources of the region are protected according to adopted standards; and1
Whereas, The DRBC currently has in place a moratorium on natural gas development in the basin, including hydraulic fracturing 1[and the treatment and discharge of hydraulic fracturing wastewater] , and it has not allowed the import of high volumes of hydraulic fracturing wastewater to the basin or the export of high volumes of water to be used in hydraulic fracturing from the basin since 20111 ; and
Whereas, The DRBC is now considering the adoption of regulations that would allow for the “storage, treatment, disposal and/or discharge of wastewater within the basin associated with horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing for the production of natural gas where permitted”; and
Whereas, Permitting the storage, treatment, disposal, and discharge of hydraulic fracturing wastewater in the Delaware River Basin poses serious health risks to the 15 million people who rely on the Delaware for drinking water, and to the environment; 1[now, therefore,] and
Whereas, The DRBC is also considering the adoption of regulations that would allow for the export of water from the Delaware River Basin to be used in hydraulic fracturing elsewhere; and
Whereas, Hydraulic fracturing consumes millions
of gallons of water per oil or gas well, and permitting this water loss from
the Delaware River Basin may diminish the available supply of drinking water,
degrade water quality, and disrupt aquatic ecosystems; now, therefore,1
Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of New Jersey (the General Assembly concurring):
1. The Legislature urges the Governor, as a member of the Delaware River Basin Commission, to block the commission’s proposed rule that would permit the storage, treatment, disposal, and discharge of hydraulic fracturing wastewater in the basin 1and the export of water from the basin to be used in hydraulic fracturing1.
12. The Legislature urges the Governor, as a member of the Delaware River Basin Commission, to support the adoption of rules that would permanently ban hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas in the Delaware River Basin.1
1[2.] 3.1 Copies of this resolution, as filed with the Secretary of State, shall be transmitted by the Clerk of the General Assembly or the Secretary of the Senate to the Governor.