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Thursday, July 4, 2013

The Arlington Summer Splash: Frac Pools

Fracing requires the use of tremendous amounts of water ~ typically around five million gallons per well.  Selling water to the gas industry is one of Arlington's cash cows.   

Unlike water used for showering or watering a lawn, water used for fracing is a one-time use.  Frac water is permanently removed from the hydrologic cycle because much of it remains down in the earth and the fluid which does return to the surface gets trucked off and disposed of in injection wells.

There are several ways to hold this water:  Frac Ponds, Frac Tanks, and now, Frac Pools.

Some of you may recall the Epic Monster Frac Pond that Chesapeake excavated 12 feet from Grand Prairie resident's backyards during the summer of 2010.  If not, click HERE.  

One of these frac ponds may be coming soon to Arlington residents who live near the Rocking Horse Drill Site.  Click HERE for that story.  Our flawed gas drilling ordinance fails to specify setback distances of  a frac pond to a protected use.  Since industry provided input with the writing of the ordinance, we wonder if this omission was deliberate.   

When frac ponds are not feasible, industry uses frac tanks.  Frac tanks hold 500 barrels, or the equivalent of 21,000 gallons of water.  This method is frowned upon in our City limits because each tank means one trailer load in and one trailer load out.  That's a lot of truck traffic to handle on our deteriorating streets.

We just learned that XTO Energy now uses Frac Pools.  Here is a short video which shows how a frac pool, aka Redneck Swimming Pool is constructed:

Next is a recent picture of a frac pool taken by one of our area resident photographers.  This is  XTO Energy's Rose Drill Site located at 8101 U.S. Highway 287 in Arlington, Texas:

Notice the color of that fluid in the pool.  Since many residents expressed concerns,  we inquired about this.  XTO assured us that only clean, potable water is in that pool.  They don't want tainted water.  Whew!  We're so glad they cleared that up!!  For a minute there we wondered if  fracing chemicals are mixed in that water.  But, as Walter Dueease, Regulatory Affairs Manager of XTO explained, the fracing process is not like baking cakes or cookies where all the ingredients get mixed in one bowl before they're put in the oven.

Perhaps they should leave this pool up after they complete fracing operations.  Neighbors would love to have a community pool, and we feel  this would be a positive contribution from the Oil & Gas Industry to the residents of Arlington who have to live next door to this stuff day in and day out.  Just think of all the happy children splashing around in there!!

For more reading enjoyment, click HERE for the story, "Pennsylvania High to Host Bizarre Swim Meet - In Fracking Fluid."


  1. Hope that last story there in this post was an April Fools joke. Unbelievable if not.

  2. Oh just saw this...

    [...]Some of you may recall the Epic Monster Frac Pond that Chesapeake excavated 12 feet from Grand Prairie resident's backyards during the summer of 2010...[...]

    It was 10 feet when we measured it back then. But what's a couple of feet when there's a Monster FRAC Pond with millions of gallons of water right below your bedroom window?

    Thanks for the memories of that on behalf of our neighbors who lived through the disaster. Actually 2 died within a few months of this monster being built. Both already had compromised immune systems. Some things just don't help when you are already struggling with your health.

    1. Thank you for mentioning those two deaths which occurred shortly after the construction of that Monster frac pond. This is truly a prime example of a "sacrifice zone." Curious how we don't recall the media reporting about this tragedy. The loss of human life is believed to have been caused from exposure to high benzene levels, and we understand the City of Grand Prairie has official documentation on the soil testing.

    2. Well, there is no hard evidence that the deaths were because of the benzene. But we do know the levels were high after the pond was dug out.

      We actually do have the documentation. And we do know that it was psychologically very upsetting to those who had to experience the thing being constructed immediately behind their homes.

      It's all too much for the peaceful suburban lifestyle that may, in fact, be a thing of the past in North Central Texas.

  3. That looks more like a sludge pool than a frack pool.... just sayin'.