USGS releases raw data, but no analysis, about Pavillion groundwater

Sep 26, 2012

The U.S. Geological Survey has released new data about groundwater testing near Pavillion. The testing was meant to provide additional information about whether hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, caused water contamination there.

Keith Guille with the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality says no one quite knows what the results mean yet, because the USGS only provided raw numbers, not analysis.

“There were no conclusions that they drew from these test results,” Guille said. “And so it is going to take some time to look at these, analyze them and really try to grasp what these data points say.”

In December, the Environmental Protection Agency issued a draft report tentatively linking groundwater contamination to fracking near Pavillion. But the state of Wyoming and various other entities questioned the EPA’s science and conclusions. The new data, as well as the EPA draft report, will go to a peer review panel.

The Pavillion working group will also discuss the USGS results at its next meeting on October 10th.