The Columbus Community Bill of Rights

Columbus Residents are working to ensure safe drinking water, clean air, and safe soil in the City of Columbus.


Columbus, Ohio Area Watersheds and Class II Injection Wells

There are 13 active frack waste water injection wells in the Columbus Scioto River watershed.

  • Frack waste water is radioactive: radium 266 up to 3,000x EPA safe drinking water limit.
  • Frack waste water contains carcinogens, neurotoxins, and hormone disrupters.
  • Frack waste water injection wells cause earthquakes: -8 states including Ohio.
  • Ohio alone does not regulate radioactive frack waste drill cuttings.
  • Ohio imports frack waste from PA and WV to dump in Ohio injection wells and landfills.

According to Teresa Mills of Center for Health and Environmental Justice (CHEJ), in 2015 alone, Morrow County injection wells recieved 419,064 gallons of frack "brine" waste.

Mosher Well, Class II injection well

Our Injection Well Tours really let Ohio residents understand how inadequate our state regulatory system is. The United States EPA long ago relegated its authority over the regulatory process of injecting oil/gas waste in the state of Ohio to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). This aspect of oil/gas regulation through the ODNR has us very concerned that industry profit concerns are top priority, where the long-term safety of Franklin County drinking water's watershed suffers a lower priority. This is a crucial reason that citizens in Columbus must create a means to protect our childrens' childrens' health, and our natural resources.

In the specific instance of the Mosher Unit well shown here, when this Class II injection well was permitted in 1981, it was stipulated that "upon discontinuance of injection operations, the owner shall apply for a permit to plug and abandon the well. Such well shall be plugged and abandoned within sixty (60) days following discontinuance of operations." As of August 12, 2017, there is no indication that this well has been plugged, 16 months after the 4/7/2016 date of the plug order.

This is why people like Teresa Mills are so adamant that the US EPA must take over Ohio's UIC (Underground Injection Control) program from Ohio Department of Natural Resources Oil & Gas Division. The state agency has an extremely poor record of enforcing orders such as this plug order. In the case of the Ginsberg well in Athens County, OH, an original order to plug was created in 1986. Since then, it has not only continued to operate, but has been owned by four operators being cited multiple times for violations, and reports of continued soil contaminations around the well. Veterenarian reports of fish in streams near the well had cancerous tumors, and horses drinking out of a creek near the well were getting sick. Area resident Madeline Ffitch was arrested in 2012, for blocking the entrance of the well to bring attention to the situation, and more generally to the amount of toxic waste Ohio accepts from fracked wells.


On-going media coverage in Morrow County, Ohio, following our August 12th, 2017 injection well tour:

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