Investigation 10

November 5, 2016

SMC B206

Mr. Caswell

Investigation 10

          According to research conducted by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public

Health, asthmatic people who are living close to natural gas wells used for fracking are

more likely to have asthma attacks than those who don’t live as close to them. In fact, a

study reported by Alternet expressed that fracking endangers people, particularly young

ones, as it negatively affects the health of the lungs, heart, and immune system. In

“Potential Hazards of Air Pollutant Emissions from Unconventional Oil and Natural Gas

Operations on the Respiratory Health of Children and Infants,” a study from “Reviews on

Environmental Health,” it is explained that the negative health effects can also affect

children in the womb, as well as name the elements which contribute towards these

effects. It names benzene, formaldehyde, and silica dust, which have all been connected to

health effects in regards to respiration.

          It is recommended that, at the least, fracking should be done one mile away from

populated areas, such as houses, child care facilities, and educational facilities.

Researchers in Pennsylvania expressed that as many as 53,000 people who are less then 10

years old were regularly less than a mile from fracking sites. In fact, it had also been

expressed that over 17 million people in America lived in residences that were less than a

mile from fracking sites.

          A fracking-related map made by Healthy Schools Pennsylvania revealed that dozens

of pipeline compression stations, which have been known to contribute towards air

pollution, were located about a mile from various schools in Pennsylvania. The state has

also had hundreds of violations in regards to its environment-related laws, all of which

happened close to either a school or day care. Also, about a dozen violations happened

close to a hospital. In the western part United States, Western Resource Advocates

researchers discovered in 2012 that dozens of schools were within 1,000 of fracking wells.

          Dr. Marsha Haley of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute went on to explain

that the setback distances where are made to keep fracking wells and heavily populated

areas is too insufficient to maintain public health. There’s the notion of the long-term

health of children being put at risk, along with the risk of explosions and other dangerous

incidents. Bernie Sanders went as so far as to say that in the case people are serious about

sanitation, health, and climate, then fracking should be gone from the nation.


Benham, B. (2016, July 18). Study links fracking industry wells to increased risk of asthma attacks. Retrieved from

Kelly, S. (2016, May 23). Fracking’s Air Pollution Puts Infants and Children at Risk of Developing Heart, Lung Problems: New Study. Retrieved from developing-heart-lung-problems

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