01/18/2012 12:05 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

After the Gas Rush (Part 2)

The natural gas industry uses millions of gallons of fresh water for its hydraulic fracturing process, water that becomes contaminated with a witches brew of assorted toxins, carcinogens and low-level radioactive materials. This rising tide of toxic waste water is sometimes disposed of in deep underground wells and is suspected of triggering minor earthquakes in places like Ohio, as NRDC geologist Briana Mordick has blogged.    

NRDC Journey OnEarth producer Roshini Thinakaran and cameraman/editor Zak Wenning got rare footage of this waste water during a behind-the-scenes tour of a Pennsylvania  gas drilling recycling plant, where waste water from fracking operations is processed and toxic contaminants are carted off to landfills for disposal.


NRDC Journey OnEarth

As new shale gas wells have mushroomed across the country, state officials are increasingly worried about what to do with the growing streams of toxic-laden waste--called flowback water--that are by-products of fracking operations. Watch this video and ask yourself; is this the best way to use of our precious fresh water resources?