At first glance this sticker I spotted on a water fountain appears to be from the New York City Department of Environmental Protection, telling citizens that they’ve checked out the water and it’s probably safe. If you have any doubts about there being chemicals in there that seeped in because of hydraulic fracturing, don’t worry, just turn on the spigot and do the ‘ol match test and see if it bursts into flame. Wait, what?
Actually, it’s a cheeky piece of guerilla activist marketing trying to raise awareness about “hydraulic fracturing” aka “hydrofracking” aka “fracking” aka “wtf did they do to our water?” As used here, hydraulic fracturing when you try to get natural gas out of the ground by drilling a big hole in the earth and then pumping it full of a liquid chemical. The pressure of driving the fluid into the rock creates cracks in the target area and lets the gas down below seep up faster so it can be harvested.
Clever monkeys! But the problem is that some of these liquids can seep into the areas natural groundwater. Sometimes so much that the water becomes undrinkable for local residents, and even flammable. Here’s a video to demonstrate:
And for the record, New York City has some of the cleanest and tastiest tapwater in America. The only time you would light a flame next to it would be to wave your lighter back and forth over how much it rocks.