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Eagle Ridge Response

Eagle Ridge Response

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Published by CBS11
Eagle Ridge Energy released a lengthy additional response to CBS 11's story from Thursday, May 1.
Eagle Ridge Energy released a lengthy additional response to CBS 11's story from Thursday, May 1.

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Published by: CBS11 on May 05, 2014
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07/23/2014

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For Immediate Release May 5, 2014 EagleRidge Energy Complies with State Health and Safety Requirements for Emissions
On May 1, 2014, the Denton Drilling Awareness Group (“DAG”) published the results of an air
sampling taken on February 9, 2014, at a residence located in the Meadows at Hickory Creek neighborhood in Denton. This residence is located approximately 800 feet to the southeast of a gas production padsite owned and operated by EagleRidge Energy. DAG asserted that the results show that residents in the neighborhood were exposed to levels of benzene exceeding state long-term exposure limits and that videos it obtained show toxic emissions coming from
EagleRidge Energy’s gas well
sites. Nevertheless,
DAG’s
claims are not supported by the information released by DAG and are in direct contrast to independent air sampling tests conducted by the Texas Commission for Environmental Quality (TCEQ). The air sample report released by DAG shows that at the time of the sampling, the measured concentration of benzene was 2.0 ppbV
(“parts per billion value”)
. TCEQ has established short-term and long-term Air Monitoring Comparison Values (AMCVs), which are guidelines used to evaluate ambient concentrations of a chemical in air. AMCVs are also used to determine a
chemical’s potential to result in adverse health effects, adverse vegetative effects, or odors.
AMCVs are set to provide a margin of safety and are set below levels at which adverse health effects are reported in the scientific literature. If a chemical concentration in ambient air is less than its comparison value, no adverse health effects are expected to occur. If a chemical concentration exceeds its comparison value it does not necessarily mean that adverse effects will occur, but rather that further testing and evaluation is warranted. As a result, those measured ambient concentrations which are below AMCV values are not of concern per TCEQ guidelines. TCEQ has established a short-term health AMCV of 180 ppbv and a long-term health AMCV of 1.4 ppbv for benzene. The measured concentration reported by DAG, 2.0 ppbv, is representative
of a “short
-
term” emission and should be compared to the short
-term health AMCV of 180 ppbv of benzene. The 180 ppbv is the concentration at which TCEQ identifies that exposure at this level in the short-term has the potential to adversely impact health or welfare. The measured concentration of 2.0 ppbv is much less than the short-term health AMCV of 180 ppbv. As a result, the residents of the neighborhood were not exposed to harmful concentrations of benzene as alleged by DAG. While a concentration of 2.0 ppbv exceeds the long-term health AMCV for benzene, the long-term health AMCV is based on a life-time of exposures, or approximately 70 years. DAG has not presented additional air sampling results indicating that the concentration is reoccurring.
According to TCEQ’s investigation procedures,
when a concentration exceeds the long-term health AMCV, further investigation may be appropriate and a single measurement cannot be used without multiple test samples to assess whether health concerns exist. In other words,
 
several samples over a long period of time would need to be taken in order to confirm that the long-term AMCV is being exceeded in order to assess whether the public is being exposed to  benzene at concentrations which would adversely impact human health or welfare. Because the report released by DAG is a single short term sample, and includes no other subsequent sampling, that one report does not indicate that the long-term health AMCV for benzene has  been exceeded, or provides a basis for concern. EagleRidge Energy also points out that DAG did not disclose the results of other contemporaneous air sampling done by the State of Texas that show that benzene concentrations in the neighborhood have not exceeded either
the state’s
 short-term or long-term health AMCVs. Links to those reports are at the end of this press release. TCEQ collected air samples in the immediate area of Ea
gleRidge’s gas production sites on 2/7/2014, 2/9/2014 shortly after the sample cited by DAG, and on 2/10/2014. According to TCEQ’s published sampling reports,
the location of all of the
TCEQ’s samples were in closer proximity to EagleRidge’s gas productio
n sites, and therefore would reflect the highest concentrations of benzene in the tests taken by either DAG or the TCEQ., The air samplings from the TCEQ tests measured benzene concentrations of (0.46, 0.72, and 0.46 ppbv) that are most importantly substantially below the concentration levels released by DAG and well below short-term and long-term AMCVs guidelines established by the TCEQ.
Based upon TCEQ’s published results, and in accordance with TCEQ’s guidelines, the
residents of the neighborhood are not being exposed to benzene at concentrations which would adversely impact human health or welfare in the short-term or the long-term. EagleRidge Energy is providing this information because DAG chose to report only one air sample, while ignoring other air samples that demonstrate no dangerous levels of benzene
in the area of EagleRidge Energy’s gas production operations.
EagleRidge also noted that the sample released by DAG was not accompanied by a
“background” sample, or a sample which measures the ambient concentration of contaminants in
the air upwind of the padsite to assess other sources of benzene in the area. Without sampling
alleged “clean” air upwind of EagleRidge’s
 padsite, one cannot scientifically deduce that
EagleRidge’s operation contribut
ed to the benzene concentration detected in the air sample released by DAG. A sample immediately upw
ind of EagleRidge’s
 padsite would assist in excluding other sources of benzene located in the neighborhood. The samples taken by the TCEQ by comparison, were taken closer to the padsite and provide a more reliable basis for assessing the presence of benzene in the neighborhood. EagleRidge would also point out that TCEQ has actively sampled the air in the Barnett Shale area in North Texas and
concluded that the air monitors are showing “no signs of concern for any chemicals” and that there are “no immediate health concerns for air quality in the area.” A link to TCEQ’s report on its air sampling in the Barnett Shale area is at the end of this press
release. And, t
he results of the TCEQ’s air sampling
 
According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, benzene “
can originate from outdoor air and also from sources indoors such as building materials and furniture, attached  garages, heating and cooking systems, stored solvents and various human activities. Indoor concentrations are also affected by climatic conditions and the air exchange rate due to forced or natural ventilation. Indoor concentrations are affected by outdoor levels owing to the exchange of indoor and outdoor air. Outdoor benzene concentrations are mainly due to traffic  sources and are affected by season and meteorology. Other outdoor sources of benzene are  petrol stations and certain industries such as those concerned with coal, oil, natural gas, chemicals and steel. Materials used in construction, remodeling and decorating are major contributors to indoor benzene concentrations. Certain furnishing materials and polymeric materials such as vinyl, PVC and rubber floorings, as well as nylon carpets and SBR-latex-backed carpets, may contain trace levels of benzene. Benzene is also present in particleboard  furniture, plywood, fiberglass, flooring adhesives, paints, wood paneling, caulking and paint remover. Therefore, new buildings or recently redecorated indoor environments have been associated with high concentrations of benzene from materials and furniture. The rate of emission of benzene from materials and furniture will decay and eventually these sources will reach a quasi-
 steady emission rate in new buildings within weeks or months or up to a year”
 
Without conducting the proper ambient air sampling to screen other potential sources of benzene and simultaneously measuring the background air quality, the residents of Denton and the Vintage neighborhood should not conclude that the measured concentration was caused by
EagleRidge’s operations at the time of the sample.
DAG has asserted that videos taken of an EagleRidge Energy padsite show toxic emissions. The  public should not interpret these videos as evidence of air contamination since the videos and DAG do not explain how the video shows the emission of toxic chemicals. As discussed above,
TCEQ’s air sampling has shown that EagleRidge Energy’s g
as drilling and production operations  pose no threat to the community with results consistently well below prescribed levels. EagleRidge embraces the standards for air quality that have been established by the TCEQ and is committed to protecting the health, safety and welfare of the communities in which it operates. The Company further engages environmental specialists to ensure compliance to established health standards and regularly investigates the newest technologies that will result in reduced air emissions in the immediate future.
TCEQ Reports
Two Days Before; (February 7
th
th
)

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