NATIONAL EPA POLICY
As the EPA prepares to write new methane rules, Liveable Arlington has advocated through written comment and spoken testimony at the EPA's 2021 public listening tour for nationwide cuts in methane emissions to the fullest amount allowed through enforcement of the Clean Air Act. However, for urban drilling happening in Barnett Shale cities like Arlington, we ask that many more steps be taken to protect our children who go to school and daycare dangerously close to fracking sites. You can read our full comments to the EPA here and here.
Arlington currently has a setback distance of 600 feet from the drill zone to the main structure of a protected use (ex: home, school, hospital, etc.) or to a preschool playground. However, drillers seek, and always receive, waivers to reduce the setback to 300 feet even though peer reviewed health research has found serious health impacts linked to fracking at distances as far as a mile and beyond. Steps can be taken right now to make Arlington a safer, healthier, better place to live.
We recommend the following policies be adopted as soon as possible by the City of Arlington.
In order to protect Arlington toddlers, no new gas wells should be permitted at drill sites next to daycares.
Stop administrative approval of drilling permits behind closed doors. The public must be allowed to give input on any proposed drilling in our community.
Measure setbacks from the boundary line of a drill site to the boundary line of a protected use property, with no setback waivers permitted.
Follow best practices for air monitoring.
Institute 24-hour air monitoring with community oversight & real-time data reporting at new and existing drill sites within 1/2 mile of protected uses.
Follow Leak Detection & Remediation (LDAR) regulations when emissions are detected. Conduct LDAR operations monthly, otherwise.
Follow the Best Available Control Technology (BACT) standard to reduce emissions and the venting of hazardous air pollutants from drilling.