Environmental labs raising money to monitor water quality in Balmorhea springs

Environmental labs raising money to monitor water quality in Balmorhea springs

BALMORHEA, TX (KWES) - A petition against oil drilling in Balmorhea has continued to gain more signatures as residents hope to keep the natural beauty of the Oasis of West Texas.

That's why an environmental center is looking for funding to make sure the drilling doesn't disturb nature or the local water supply.

The petition has been circling around for months. more than 4,000 signatures against Apache Oil Corporation drilling and fracking in Balmorhea.

Many residents have signed away their mineral rights, along with the Reeves County Water District, but some are concerned there could be damage to water quality due to fracking and horizontal drilling.

"Pumping millions of gallons of water which is going to include a certain percentage of chemical additives, below the surface. There is a risk that some of those compounds could get into the ground water and into the surface water," said Zacariah Hildenbrand, a scientific contributor at C.L.E.A.R.

C.L.E.A.R., an environmental conservation center, started a GoFundMe campaign to help with costs in testing the water for harmful chemicals that may have been transferred during the hydraulic fracturing process.

The GoFundMe account has raised more than $1,700 of the $54,400 goal.

The Reeves County Water District has tested the water monthly and say they have not seen changes in it's quality, but CLEAR said the testing they want to provide is more comprehensive and looks at metals, minerals and a wide range of chemical species.

"Do I think people should be concerned? I think generally everyone should be concerned about their water quality, but what I can tell them. We are working as quickly as we possibly can to get out there and do that monitoring to provide people with information that can be useful to them," said Hildenbrand.
More information about the environmental project can be found here: https://www.gofundme.com/27hgyr3f.

Copyright 2016 KWES. All rights reserved.