Resource for journalists reporting on fracking and its health ramifications

Image: David BrownPlease consider as a resource Fairfield University faculty member David R. Brown, a pioneering environmental scientist and public health toxicologist who is a founding member of the Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project (SWPA-EHP) that is addressing the health effects of natural gas drilling, also known as fracking.

Dr. Brown says gas drilling can pollute the air, water and soil in nearby homes, and can even harm food. The SWPA-EHP tends to vulnerable populations who think their health may be compromised by gas drilling activities (including compressor stations, wastewater pits, and truck traffic). It is the only institution in the country studying the health effects of natural gas fracking on families and farmers in Pennsylvania. In addition to providing information and assistance, Dr. Brown is also providing a model of public health justice that is being emulated by leading institutions such as Harvard and Yale. The endeavor involves over a dozen health scientists and is funded by three foundations. Dr. Brown currently directs the science portion of the project.

A former member of the National Academy of Sciences, he earned a Sc.D. from the Harvard School of Public Health. Brown teaches in Fairfield's Program for Applied Ethics and Environmental Studies Program. For more information about Fairfield University, visit

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726,

Posted on July 2, 2013

Vol. 45, No. 308

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