What The Frack - Part 3

frack_baby_frackIn Part 1 of this series we looked at the overall process of Hydraulic Fracturing and how it can be used to successfully recover natural gas and oil from shale deposits.  In Part 2 the actual process of Hydraulic Fracturing or as some refer to it as “Fracking, was looked at in detail.  In this part of the series we will look at the chemicals involved in the process.

When I started this series I planned on combining the “negatives” that the “do nothing”, “know nothing” liberal left have been using and explain just why these negatives are not quite what they seem to be.  My plan changed when I realized that they are trying to scare normal people by playing on their fears of the unknown.  This part of their plan is evident when you look at the list of “harmful” chemicals they have told you are used in fracking.  Because almost all of those chemicals have other uses that I think you will find are not sinister like the “tree huggers” would like you to believe, this part of the series will deal with the chemical side of fracking only.

In part 2 of this series I showed you a list of the chemicals that are used in fracking as compiled by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.  The following is that list, with the supplier trade names removed.  In place of the trade names you will find other “uses” for those same chemicals along with a source so you can learn even more about them.  I think you will find it very enlightening.

Chemical Home and other uses
2,2-Dibromo-3-Nitrilopropionamide Used in household cleaning products
2-methyl-4-isothiazolin-3-one Cosmetic formulas
5-chloro-2-methyl-4-isothiazolin-3-one Household products like detergents
Acetic Acid Vinegar
Acetic Anhydride Used in making aspirin, acetaminophen and other pharmaceuticals
Acetylene Welding Gas
Alcohol Ethoxylated Shampoo
Alkyl benzene sulfonic acid Laundry powders, laundry liquids, dishwashing liquids
Ammonia (aqueous) Household
Ammonium Bifluoride Cleaning and sterilizing brewing and dairy equipment
Ammonium Persulfate Hair Bleach
Ammonium Bisulfite Water treatment to remove excess chlorine
Ammonium chloride Treat low chlorides in blood
Ammonium Salt (alkylpolyether sulfate) Disinfectant (Hospital / Healthcare Facilities)
Amorphous silica That little packet in your drug bottle
Benzoic Acid Food Additive, one of the safest
Boric Acid Food preservatives, baby powder
Boric Oxide Detergent (Borax)
Calcium Chloride Cardiac resuscitation
Calcium Oxide Facial Cleanser/Hair Remover
Carboxymethylhydroxypropyl guar blend Inert ingredient cosmetics
Choline Chloride The human body produces choline
Cinnamaldehyde The smell and flavour of cinnamon
Citric Acid Lemons, Food Additive
Complex polyamine salt Organic compounds found in every living cell
Crystalline Silica: Crystalline silica is a basic component of soil
Crystalline Silica: Quartz Crystalline silica is a basic component of soil
Cupric chloride dihydrate Intravenous solutions for total parenteral nutrition
Cured resin Hydrocarbon secretion of many plants that is hard
Cyclohexanes Furniture polishes
Dazomet Soil fumigant - More fresh fruits and vegetables (EPA)
Diethylene Glycol Hair Coloring
d-Limonene Oil in citrus peels, dill, fennel, celery and other plants
Enzyme Enzymes are needed for all bodily functions
EO-C7-9-iso-, C8 rich-alcohols Control Essential Tremor neurological tremors
EO-C9-11-iso-, C10-rich alcohols Hand lotion
Ethoxylated Alcohol Biodegradable surfactants for household cleaning
Ethyl Acetate New Skin Liquid Bandage
Ethyl Alcohol whiskey, gin, rum, vodka, tequila, and brandy
Ethylbenzene vegetables may contain very small amounts of it
Ethylene Glycol Latex Paints, anti-freeze
720/ Sceletrol 7208/ CC 300/ Clachek A/ Clachek See Diethylene Glycol
LP/ Ironsta II B/ NCL-100/ BC 140/ NCL-100/ See Diethylene Glycol
Flomax 50/ NCL/ Scalehib 100/ Unihib O/ Unilink 8.5 See Isopropyl Alcohol
Formic Acid Liquid Hand Soap
Gluconic Acid Occurs naturally in fruit, honey, kombucha tea, and wine
Glutaraldehyde Preservative in cosmetics
Glycerol Toothpaste
Glycol Ethers liquid soaps, and cosmetics
Guar Gum Laxative
Hydrochloric Acid Stomach Acid
Hydrochloric Acid 3% - 35% Stomach Acid
Isopropanol See Isopropyl Alcohol
FMW25 Foamer/ CS-2 Isopropanol
Isopropyl Alcohol Rubbing Alcohol
Methanol See Methyl Alcohol
Methyl Alcohol Liquid Hand Soap
Methyl Salicylate Over-the-counter products, muscle ache creams
n-butanol Nail polish
Nitrilotriacetamide Prevents scaling by salts
Phenolic Resin A plastic
Polyethylene Glycol Laxative
Polyethylene Glycol Mixture Laxative
Polyoxylalkylene sulfate Detergent
Polysaccharide Blend Carbohydrates, such as starch and cellulose
Potassium Carbonate Leavening agents available to a baker
Potassium Chloride Treat low blood levels of potassium
Potassium Hydroxide Liquid soaps
Propargyl Alcohol Corrosion inhibitor
Propylene Glycol Skin-Conditioning Agent
Silica      Sand Silicon stimulates cell metabolism and cell formation
Sodium Bicarbonate Antacid
Sodium Bromide Sedative, headaches, anti seizure medication
Sodium Hydroxide              Hair strengtheners
Sodium Persulphate Hair bleaches and hair lighteners
Sodium Xylene Sulfonate Thicken a mixture like shampoo
Sulfuric Acid Antibacterial Hand Soap
Surfactants Reduce the surface tension of water
Talc Baby (talcum) powder
Tetrakis(hydroxymethyl)phosphonium sulfate Flame retardants in cotton fabrics
Tetramethyl ammonium Chloride Detergent Sanitizers
Trimethyloctadecylammonium chloride “Green” Surfactant

Once you get beyond the “scary” chemical name and take a real look at other uses for these chemicals they are not quite as scary.  Now I want to make one thing perfectly clear, all of these chemicals can be hazardous if used in an inappropriate manner, but without them many of things we take for granted in life would not be possible.

Now I want you to take a look at another list of chemicals.


Contaminants Maximum Contaminant Level MCL[µg/l or ppb]
Antimony 6
Arsenic 5*#
Asbestos 7x 10E6 fibers/l > 10µm
Barium 2000
Beryllium 4
Cadmium 5
Chromium 100
Copper 1300**[AL
Cyanide 200
Fluoride 4000
Lead 15**[AL
Mercury 2
Nitrate[as nitrogen] 10000
Nitrite 1000
[combined nitrate/nitrite 10000]
Selenium 50
Thallium 2
Nickel +
* NJ MCL (A 280).
** An action level [AL] is not an MCL. It is a trigger point at which remedial action is to take place.
+ No MCL-Monitoring Required.
# Effective January 23, 2006.

Synthetic Organic Compounds

Contaminants MCL [µg/l or ppb]
Alachlor 2
Aldicarb +
Aldicarb Sulfore +
Aldicarb Sulfoxide +
Atrazine 3
Benzo[a]pyrene 0.2
Carbofuran 40
Chlordane 0.5*
Dalapon 200
Dibromochloropropane [DBCP] 0.2
Di[2-ethylhexyl]adipate 400
Di[2-ethylhexyl]phthalate 6
Dinoseb 7
Diquat 20
Endothall 100
Endrin 2
Ethylene dibromide [EDB] 0.05
Glyphosate 700
Heptachlor 0.4
Heptachlor Epoxide 0.2
Hexachlorobenzene 1
Hexachlorocyclopentadiene 50
Lindane 0.2
Methoxychlor 40
Oxamyl 200
PCBs 0.5
Pentachlorophenol 1
Picloram 500
Simazine 4
Toxaphene 3
2,3,7,8-TCDD [Dioxin] 3 X 10E-5
2,4-D 70
2,4,5-TP [Silvex] 50
* N.J. MCL [A-280]
+ No MCL-Monitoring Required

Volatile Organic Compounds

Contaminants MCL [µg/l or ppb]
Benzene 1*
Carbon Tetrachloride 2*
meta-Dichlorobenzene 600*
ortho-Dichlorobenzene 600
para-Dichlorobenzene 75
1,1-Dichloroethane 50*
1,2-Dichloroethane 2*
1,1-Dichloroethylene 2*
cis-1,2-Dichloroethylene 70
trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene 100
1,2-Dichloropropane 5
Ethylbenzene 700
Methyl tertiary Butyl Ether 70*
Methylene Chloride 3*
Monochlorobenzene 50*
Naphthalene 300*
Styrene 100
1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane 1*
Tetrachloroethylene 1*
Toluene 1000
1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene 9*
1,1,1-Trichloroethane 30*
1,1,2-Trichloroethane 3*
Trichloroethylene 1*
Vinyl Chloride 2
Xylenes [total] 1000*
* N.J. MCL [A-280]

Secondary Standards [primarily aesthetic]

Physical Characteristics Recommended Upper Limit or Optimum Range
Color 10 color units (standard cobalt scale)
pH 6.5 to 8.5 (optimum range)
Odor 3 Threshold odor number
Taste No objectional taste
Chemical Characteristics Recommended Upper Limit (mg/l or ppm)
ABS/L.A.S. 0.5
Aluminum 0.2
Chloride 250
Fluoride 2
Hardness (as CaCO3) 250
Iron 0.3
Manganese 0.05
Silver 0.1
Sodium 50
Sulfate 250
Total dissolved solids 500
Zinc 5

Now that is a pretty scary list too, isn’t it?  Well this list and the concentration limits are the chemicals that can be present in your drinking water as determined by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the United States Department of Health.  If you would like to see that list, you can find it here:

Federal and New Jersey State Primary and Secondary Drinking Water Standards as of February, 2005

Now should you worry about your drinking water?  Absolutely not.  At the same time should you worry about the chemicals used in fracking?  Absolutely not.

In part 4 of this series we will take a look at some of the other “scary” things and ideas that the loonies on the left are using to convince you that fracking is bad.  Again, I think you will find it informative.

What the Frack - Part 1

What the Frack - Part 2

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  1. John Swanson says:

    You debuke nothing in this post! These so called “household” chemicals will kill you if you INGEST them…..ANTI-FREEZE…c’mon man, have a glass of that! As for the other chemicals in our drinking water that you list, they all are at safe levels as determined by our government, and we drink them every day. The oil and gas companies are leaving TOXIC chemicals in the ground and aquifers that exceed safe levels by hundreds of times. If your so damn sure that fracking is safe, then go out to Dimock, PA. and drink down a big glass of that crap from the tap, then maybe we won’t have to deal with your convoluted opinions any more. What’s the matter, no guts? You may not have any guts after drinking that so called “clean” water. This isn’t about the left or the right, it’s about common sense. If the democrats AND the republicans used more of that, we’d all be better off. That gas isn’t going anywhere, it’s been there for millions of years. Figure out a safe way to extract it, and I’m all for it. The gas and oil companies are in a big rush to tap as many wells as fast as they can because they know they’re unsafe, and they want to make as much money as possible before they get shut down. The people in Dimock PA got scammed by big oil and gas dangling a few dollars in their faces so they could drill wells on their land, and I’d bet my paycheck if they had to do it all over again, they wouldn’t, and you say they’re trying to scam the government! For what, trucked in drinking water??? Their properties are near worthless now. Hey Richard, bet you could get a good deal on some farmland in Dimock…..and go retire there.

  2. John Swanson

    Your comment is just what one would expect from the loony liberal left. I debunk the myth that most of these chemicals are the hazardous ones that you and the other morons say they are. Is sand “hazardous”? How about “talcum”? Plus, all they list are the chemicals used, not what is in anyone’s drinking water. On the other hand, the list I showed of the drinking water standards are chemicals that you WILL find in your drinking water, depending where you live. And these chemicals are accepted by the liberal lefties in the NJDEP!

    As far as Dimock, PA has the word “SUE’ ever entered your mind? What a great way to hit the lottery; make everyone believe that somehow a fracking operation contaminated your water. Haul them into court, in front of a bunch of libs and collect a couple of hundreds of millions of dollars. And that would be on top of the gas royalties, which are quite large. Not bad work if you can get it.

    In part 4 of the series I will show other tactics that you and your liberal loony friends are using in the hope of further scaring the population. I will try to use small words so you will understand, but I am not holding out hope. On the other hand, anyone with an IQ above that of a brick should have no problem seeing the light.

    By the way, if a person has ingested Ethylene Glycol (anti-freeze to the unknowing - John) the first aid treatment is to give them as much drinking alcohol as possible. The Ethyl Alcohol prevents the formation of Oxalic Acid, which is the real poison to the body.

  3. Healthy says:

    These may all be in household cleaning products, but perhaps that is another problem. We want to get these horrific chemicals OUT of our homes as well.

  4. Healthy:

    Take look at all of the applications of the chemicals listed. Some are used in foods others in medicines. So are produced by you and every other creature on earth. They are not horrific, but neccessary for the life we live.

  5. John Swanson says:


    I’m a republican, I’m no looney, I’m not left, I’m not a brick, and I’m certainly not a moron. You can retort to my comments with any words you choose, if I don’t understand them, I’ll look them up. I’m civically minded and a member of several local republican organizations, and I’ll guarantee I wouldn’t tolerate being disrepected as you have done, in person. Your use of such tactics proves your ignorance and disproves your argument.

    I’ve learned a few things in fifty years, and one of them is that any time you have discourse betweeen two people on a subject they disagree about, and one of those persons resorts to insults and name calling, that person has just lost the argument because he/she is too ignorant to prove his point without personally attacking his/her opponent. I’d like to see you do that at a Christie Town Hall Meeting. He’d teach you about courtesy and public discourse. I’ve been to four of them, and there is usually some ignorant opinionated person that has to be straightened out, and he does it. You should go to one. You have evidenced your inability to prove a point in the above comment several times. I actually ticked you off so much that you had to personally attack me…thats funny, and proves your ignorance.

    Do you really believe all the residents of Dimock PA devised a plan to let gas companies drill wells on their beautiful farm land, destroy their well water and property values,endanger themselves and their families, and have water trucked in to their properties so that they could sue? You want to talk about looney, thats like conspiracy theory looney. The people of Love Canal NY, and Centralia PA had the same idea I’m sure. If you don’t know where or what they are, I suggest you look them up. The government displaced two towns and didn’t give them the funds to be properly relocated in a similar home to the one they had to move out of.

    As far as the “liberal loonies” at NJDEP that you refer to, and the city water that comes out of my tap that American Water supplies, and is approved as safe, I have never gotten sick from it, I’ve never broke out in hives from it, it’s never caught on fire, and yes there are chemicals added or existing in it but at safe levels for human consumption, and they certainly didn’t get there because of a “fracking” well head. So whats your point?

    But again I’m waisting my time, because you obviously are so entrenched in the belief that the oil and gas companies really do care about you and your well being, that they would never cause harm to anything or anyone to make profit, that would be looney. Keep drinking the Cool-Aid from Dimock.

    Theres a saying my dad taught me when I was a young boy: “Where ignorance predominates vulgarity invariably exerts itself.” I have never had anyone prove that more so than you.
    Does Conservative New Jersey have a committee or board, or is it just your soap box? Because if you do have a committee or board, they should seriously consider having someone else write commentary and deal with the public and inherent issues. You have anger issues that really doesn’t allow Conservative New Jersey the credence or respect it deserves.

    Oh, and thanks for the cure for ingesting ethylene glycol, but I would suggest the next time you do that to just seek medical attention.

  6. The comments you make are the same ones that are spouted by the Looney liberals all of the time. All bluster, no facts. Before going any further, send me an actual analysis of the Dimock drinking water. Until then anything you are based on conjecture not facts. You have a bunch of morons holding up a jug of “Dimock well water” but none of them can present an actual water analysis, which would take less than a day to be done. The whole Dimock issue is a joke.

    You mention Love Canal, New York. Do you know the history of Love Canal? If not, I would be more than happy to educate you on that issue. Do you know anything about mine fires at all, since I do believe that is what you are refereeing to when you mention Centralia, Pa. Once again, if you want an education get back to me.

    As far as your own drinking water, every chemical on that list from the NJDEP can be present in your drinking water. Since you say that American Water is your supplier want not check out just what they are putting into your home. I have made is easy for you, just follow this link:

    You claim to you are a Republican, but you sound like a liberal lefty in your condemnation of big oil and gas companies with no facts at all. Republicans deal in knowledge, Democrats deal in irrational emotions.

    My grandfather had a quote he like used in situations like this, “Talk sense to a fool and he calls you foolish”. I do believe he had you mind.

  7. Bill Wolfe says:

    This site does not provide credible information.

    If you want toxicity information on chemicals, go here:


  8. Bill Wolfe:

    It is all correct. Once again put up or shut up. Show me the cancer causing chemicals that are used in Fracking. The reason you can’t is because there are none!

  9. Bill Wolfe says:


    One of many.

  10. Benzene has only been found in trace amounts from the fracking water and has never been directly injected. It comes from the organic layer that is being tapped by the fracking. And it is not many and the levels are trace, in the parts per billion and trillion range. If you read the series you would learn that NJDEP allows levels of chemicals much more dangerous than Benzene in your water with no problem at all.

  11. Tom Gardiner says:


    Bill will find a way for the Robert Rules Republican rinos to tax the frack out of fracking.