Drilling, fracking, and associated infrastructure cause significant and dangerous air pollution. Throughout the well pad construction, drilling, fracking, and production, many chemicals leak and are released into the air and travel into the homes, playgrounds, schools, medical facilities, and communities of nearby residents. For many years since fracking began in Pennsylvania, residents have voiced concerns and have reported changes in air quality and a range of symptoms that are associated with various of the chemicals used in the drilling and fracking process.

People living near drilling and fracking have to breathe in polluted air all the time, 24/7. Such chronic exposure presents serious risks to people’s well-being, especially at-risk people such as children, the elderly, and those with pre-existing conditions.

Areas in Pennsylvania and across the country where fracking has come in have seen precipitous declines in air quality. Among the many health impacts  reported by nearby residents are serious respiratory issues, chronic nasal and sinus issues, eye irritation, and other effects commonly associated with air pollution. Studies have found high levels of air pollutants and associations with health impacts including increased risk of asthma.

Some recent studies and state data about air pollution from drilling and fracking include:

Find many more studies about drilling and fracking and air pollution here.

In addition to the risks and harms from drilling and fracking, build out of associated infrastructure including pipelines and compressor stations poses serious impacts. Across Pennsylvania and the United States, many pipelines have leaked and exploded, harming people and the environment. Compressor stations emit dangerous pollutants, often in high concentrations, endangering those who live nearby.