“What’s that smell?”
I asked that question when I caught a whiff of metallic gas while standing in Lyndia’s front yard. Her house is four hours west of Baltimore in West Union, a town in Doddridge County, West Virginia. Ten active fracking wells sit within one mile of her home.
Doddridge County is a hot spot in our country’s fracking boom. I visited the fracking fields there last June to learn first-hand what it’s like to be a “fracking neighbor.” I define fracking neighbor as someone who lives near a natural gas hydrofracturing, a.k.a. fracking, well. According to the Wall Street Journal, 15.3 million people live within one mile of a fracking well. In only nine years, five percent of Americans are now fracking neighbors, and that’s because 100,000 fracking wells have been drilled across 31 states.