In recent comments to the US Environmental Protection Agency, AWWA detailed its interests in an Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics rulemaking regarding the use of the Toxic Substances Control Act for collecting information on hydraulic fracturing chemicals and their use.
There are numerous questions answered in the comments, but most connect with these central themes:
- Water utilities need to have information about processes ongoing in their watersheds, such as oil and gas operations, to help manage water resources and protect water supplies
- The information currently available (in most cases through FracFocus) is a good start, but ultimately insufficient given a number of limitations in the data and the lack of any way to export or thoroughly analyze the information.
- Information on what chemicals are used (and in what quantities) is useful, but needs to be supplemented with other information such as the physical properties of the chemicals, fate and transport information, detection methods, and clean-up procedures.