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Your Health and Our Water

A timeline for contamination

New York City's is among the best urban water supplies in the world, and will remain so through summer 2011. After that, hydraulic fracturing ("hydrofracking") beneath the New York City aquifer may begin causing contamination of our City's water supply.

If, beginning in September 2011, you suspect your drinking water to be contaminated with chemicals involved in the hydraulic fracturing process, there are simple, economical tests you may perform to lay your concerns to rest.

(high-resolution download available here)

One such test involves bringing a lighted match or lighter into close proximity to the water of concern. Water contaminated as a result of the hydraulic fracturing process is prone to burst into flames.

More precisely, water with chemical additives, injected into deep cracks in the earth as part of the hydraulic fracturing extraction process, may enter aquifers overlaying the drill site and, along with natural gas, emerge from your faucet; upon contact with flame, this mixture can combust in spectacular fashion. (This phenomenon has been observed widely in areas subject to hydraulic fracturing extraction processes, and may soon begin appearing in areas served by the aquifer above and adjacent to the Marcellus Shale—including all five boroughs of New York City.)

If Governor Cuomo issues a ban on hydraulic fracturing before June 1, 2011, contamination of the City's water supply will not occur. If you wish to take action on this, please visit:

Please also consider helping us to spread the word about the dangers of hydraulic fracturing by posting notices near water spigots throughout the City, and please send a link to this page to any friends or loved ones you consider at risk of hydraulic fracturing contamination today or in the near future.

Disclaimer: Although hydraulic fracturing contamination is linked to symptoms such as headaches, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, hair loss, itching, and kidney failure, these symptoms are also correlated with exposure to radiation, coal fumes, common chemicals, and even some natural causes. Presence of these symptoms is thus in no way proof positive of exposure to chemicals used in the hydraulic fracturing process.

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