NCTCANorth Central Texas Communities Alliance



January 21, 2010
Contact:    817/495-2260
Gary Hogan
FORT WORTH, TEXAS - The North Central Texas Communities Alliance (NCTCA), a grass roots organization of informed and concerned citizens and community groups in the Barnett Shale region of Texas, released itsposition statement today in response to recently published results of an air quality test conducted December 15-17, 2009 in the City of Fort Worth by Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ).. 
NCTCA believes that this report discounts previous reputable laboratory studies that have shown that the air in two test locations in the Barnett Shale contain toxic contaminants found in the vent emissions from the produced water tanks at every drilling pad and there are known fugitive emissions from gas compression stations all over the United States.
NCTCA questions the appropriateness of the methodology, including the effect of the very cold temperatures at the time the tests were conducted.
NCTCA is aware that Mayor Mike Moncrief and the Fort Worth City Council had information as early as September, 2009 that TCEQ did not have funding, expertise, or equipment to do testing at this time, and based on information presented by Susana Hildebrand of TCEQ at a town meeting at DISH, TX on December 14, 2009, TCEQ has neither the funding nor the expertise to conduct the tests and that TCEQ prefers to have the gas industry fund and administer the tests.  (See Associated Press video
NCTCA has asked Senator Wendy Davis to provide information concerning who funded and implemented the studies reported by the TCEQ to the Fort Worth City Council.
The public has lost confidence in the very agency we look to for protection of our health,” says NCTCA President Esther McElfish.  “We could go to a high School science fair, and find stricter adherence to simple basic scientific procedures than TCEQ has exhibited in conducting this study. Their Disclaimer Statement calls into question their credibility,” according to McElfish. “This report is an insult to our intelligence.” 

The following disclaimer is appended to each page of the TCEQ data reported to the Council.

DISCLAIMER: This data is for screening purposes only and may include samples that did not meet the established quality control criteria. This data was not collected, analyzed. or reviewed using the documented quality assurance/quality control protocols defined in the Laboratory and Mobil Monitoring Quality Manual or those defined by the National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Conference 2003.