SWAT Environmental

Radon is a naturally produced radioactive gas that can enter your home at any time. It increases the risk of developing lung cancer when people are exposed to high concentrations over the course of months or years. Fortunately, SWAT Environmental specializes in radon mitigation and testing for residential and commercial properties. They can use advanced tools and techniques to lower radioactive gas levels. You need to know how SWAT Environmental can handle radon problems in your home or business. Radon testing is the first step your home inspector SWAT Environmental will take. This process can be done quickly at first to determine if you have an immediate problem and require radon remediation. A longer radon testing process will provide results that are more accurate, if time permits. Testing will show just how serious the problem is in your home. When results above 2.7pCi/L, you should strongly consider a radon mitigation system from S.W.A.T. Results below a specific threshold show that radon abatement might not be required at the moment. However, many citizens choose to have the radon mitigation system installed even when the readings are marginal since the units not only reduce radon levels, but also improve overall air quality within the dwelling.


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The Radioactive Contamination Epidemic Fracking Has Caused

Natural Gas Drilling Rigs

Introduction to Natural Gas and Radon


The process of fracking, or Hydraulic fracturing, is a way of releasing natural gas or oil from inside the Earth by drilling and then injecting very high pressure fluid into the well, deep underground to fracture shale rock, releasing the natural gas or oil. Fracking can also be used to recover crude oil petroleum, and even to release geothermal energy from very deep sources. Currently, the United States, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United Kingdom have energy companies that practice fracking as part of their energy production strategies.

History


The first operational and economically successful natural gas fracking well was drilled in 1950. The fracking process was experimented with as early as 1947. Over 2.5 million fracking sites had been created, worldwide, for natural gas and oil wells by the year 2012, at least a million sites in the U.S. alone.

Process


The fracking process is complex and requires some fairly advanced science to be applied carefully in order to succeed with desired results. The fracking liquid is a specific mix of water, sand, and some proprietary chemicals. It is injected into the bore of a well, usually at least a few hundred feet down, creating overwhelming pressure that causes shale rock layers to shatter. Once the shale rock is broken, it releases natural gas or petroleum back to the surface. When the high-pressure fluid is removed from the well opening, tiny clusters of the fracturing components, usually sand or aluminum oxide stays to keep the network of subterranean fractures open in the shale.

Fracking engineers study the well bore's sides to determine many characteristics particular to each fracking site. The depth level, rock density, and orientation of stress fractures are used to infer the dimensions of shale-holding natural gas sources. Seismology is employed to study micro seismic events, or tiny earthquakes, caused by the hydraulic pressure to map the height and width of a fracturing site. These micro-earthquakes have a very small magnitude level, too small to be detected at the surface, but are crucial to charting accurate maps of each site.

Controversy


Fracking is a controversial practice that proponents claim benefits the economy too significantly to be stopped by its many negative side effects. They say fracking produces the extremely valuable natural gas and oil needed to make our industries strong. Opponents to fracking disagree, claiming that the impacts on the environment counter any benefits. These impacts include contaminated ground water, radon air pollution, ground surface pollution, and over-depletion of fresh water. They say all these hazards to the environment combined with threats to public health are reasons enough to ban fracking for natural gas. They also claim damaging seismic activity has taken place because of fracking's effects on once unknown tectonic fault lines.

Another related issue in fracking, is the brine solution recovered at the surface of fracking wells, sometimes contains the radioactive minerals radon, radium, uranium, and thorium. Animals and humans exposed to the radiation experience long-term effects on health. Radon in particular is well known to cause lung cancer in humans. The issue of radon is exacerbated because it is somewhat soluble in water, thus spreading the areas of contamination at the surface.

4 comments:

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