Two arrested protesting Niles injection well site - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Two arrested protesting Niles injection well site

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NILES, Ohio - Two people were arrested during a protest outside an injection well in Trumbull County.
 
The protest was meant to call attention to the site and storage pits that will soon store waste water from the gas drilling process.
 
Protesters say the evaporation pits are too close to schools and homes in Niles and Weathersfield.
 
The site is located on North Main Street in Niles.
 
A chemical engineer who was at the protest says people don't realize what can happen with the fracking water, the byproduct of oil and gas drilling after it is stored in an evaporation pit.
 
Ray Veshrum says the air will eventually evaporate and a lot of toxic chemicals will go down wind where the wind blows. He says this means there should not be any open pits with the kind of chemicals that are found in fracking water, such as benzenes which are known carcinogens or cancer causing agents.
 
He says there are also substances that are endocrine disrupters, which can impact development in children.
 
Lynn Anderson believes the air pollution can drift down toward the center for the mentally disabled and a grade school in Niles depending on the direction of the wind.
 
Police arrested two protesters who blocked trucks entering the site. The protesters say the men have the conviction to stand up for the environment and others in the community.
 
Valerie Dearing tells us the men wanted to bring attention to what is going on here.
 
She also says Niles voted not to have injection wells, yet the state granted the company a permit to put an injection well at that site anyway.
 
The groups also questioned unions that have come out in favor of fracking or drilling for oil and gas, and against local control or bills of rights.
 
Protesters say the unions can still have jobs but emphasize companies don't have to drill and dump frack water into populated areas. They say people in Niles and Weathersfield are being used in an experiment so big oil and gas can profit at the community's expense.
 
Protesters say Ohio's laws and lack of local control are a major problem.
 
The company is in compliance with state laws and has permits to operate. No one from the company returned our call for a comment.
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