Wyoming environmentalists went to court to make public the pollutants that might be leaking in to public water supplies as a result of fracking. Unsurprisingly, the court denied the lawsuit on the grounds that corporations have a right to hide such lists from the public because they are trade secrets.

It is the heart of socialism to base decisions on human need. It is the heart of capitalism to base decisions on rights of possession. Ideally these two systems can be put in balance, but other times we must choose. If corporations are persons, then humans are not.


A judge in Wyoming has denied a lawsuit by environmental groups against the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission demanding that the list of chemicals in fracking fluids be made public, ruling such lists are trade secrets that may be withheld under Wyoming’s open records law. Soooo: Never mind that fracking wastewater, shown to conain benzene, xylene, methane, radioactive materials and other deadly toxins, has already appeared in Wyoming water; that EPA officials say an accident in Wyoming last year contaminated groundwater with toxins “well above” Safe Drinking Water Act standards; that a recent fracking accident in Pennsylvania spewed a quarter million gallons of possibly radioactive wastewater before being capped, requiring residents to be evacuated and use bottled water for weeks, after which officials helpfully told them that “most” of the fluid was contained; that a fracking blowout in South Texas, where groundwater contamination, lung disease from toxic dust, oil spills, buckling roads and truck accidents are already concerns, miraculously failed to kill anyone but caused injuries, impaled a truck and virtually trashed the site, with catastrophic photos to show for it; etc etc etc. But yeah, let’s trust for-profit gas and oil companies to keep their secrets and do right by us. What could go wrong? Abby Zimmet, Common Dreams