“Chevron recycles 21 million gallons of oil field wastewater each day and sells it to California farmers. No one knows whether crops have been contaminated. Farmers rely on oversight by water authorities.
Samples contain acetone and methylene chloride, solvents used to degrease equipment or soften thick crude oil, at concentrations higher than seen at oil spill disaster sites.One sample registered methylene chloride, a potential carcinogen, at nearly four times the amount found in the oil-fouled river at the ExxonMobil tar sands pipeline spill, a federal disaster that spurred evacuations.
“As long as they’re treating the water to the point where it’s allowed by whatever agency governs the quality of water, I think it would be OK,” said Glenn Fankhauser, assistant director of the Kern County Department of Agriculture and Measurement Standards.
Blake Sanden, a water expert with UC Davis, said “everyone smells the petrochemicals in the irrigation water” but local farmers trust that organisms in the soil remove toxins or impurities. “When they smell the oil field crap in that water, they assume the soil is taking care of this,” Sanden said, but it’s not clear whether the waste is making its way into the food chain. It’s possible. A lot of this stuff has not been studied.”
“It’s difficult to say because we don’t know what chemicals are in the water.” Chevron would not disclose the fluids used in drilling or well maintenance.
“As an environmental health scientist, this is one of the things that keeps me up at night,” said Seth Shonkoff, a researcher analyzing hydraulic fracturing for the state Legislature. “You can’t find what you don’t look for.”
LA Times –
Acetone apple strudel topped with methylene chloride softened almonds in a contaminated raspberry sauce, paired with a nice Paso Robles Arsenic Chardonnay makes a sumptuous repast for cyborgs and degreases their internal organs quite nicely. Just don’t serve it to the humans.