John Fenton Tour
John Fenton is a farmer from Pavillion Wyoming who has been living with pollution of ground water and air pollution, land use and other effects of the gas industry. John and his wife Catherine have 24 gas wells on their farm. John Fenton featured in the Gasland film.
In 2008 the US EPA investigated discoloured ground water in Pavillion. In 2010 the EPA warned Pavillion residents not to drink the water and use a fan when bathing or washing clothes to avoid the risk of explosion, after it found the water contaminated with dangerous chemicals and methane caused by fracking for gas. Later the EPA was pressured to end their investigation.
The gas company now trucks in drinking water for local farmers. Some eat from paper plates because they cannot wash dishes without contamination, and they must open their windows when they have a shower. The water flowing out of the bores and taps smells like diesel and can be lit if contained in a jar. Several people in the district have developed neuropathy or other health ailments. Animals have also become sick.
John Fenton has a gas well situated only 100 metres from his house and the snow melt irrigation district has 200 gas wells dotted over the farm land.
Local farmers also suffer from gas land use clashing with agriculture with well pads, access roads, pipelines, truck visits and compressor stations all affecting farm operations.
John Fenton has become a leading activist in the US against unconventional gas. He has a great story to tell and is an effective and authentic communicator.
He can sound a warning to Australian media, decision-makers and audiences as to the consequences of fracking for unconventional gas and the long-term effects of a mature unconventional gas industry.