Skip to main content

Natural Awakenings Bucks and Montgomery Counties PA

WellExplorer App Can Warn of Toxic Drinking Water

Drinking Water

kobu agency/

The University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine has created WellExplorer, a new, interactive tool that allows residents and scientists to find out what toxins have been deposited in their drinking water as a result of hydraulic fracturing (fracking). Exposure to fracking fluid in drinking water has been shown to increase the risk of respiratory problems, premature births, congenital heart defects and other health problems. 

Different fracking sites use a diverse mix of chemical ingredients, and individuals and researchers are often uninformed about the exact health consequences of living near a particular well. People can view the closest fracking sites in their state, learn which chemicals are used at those sites and view their levels of toxicity by entering their zip code. WellExplorer can be obtained for free at or downloaded on Appleā€™s App store.

A recent study published in the journal Database found that operators of wells in Alabama use a disproportionately high number of chemicals that target estrogen pathways, as do those in Illinois, Ohio and Pennsylvania in impacting testosterone pathways. The information found through WellExplorer might be particularly relevant for those that use private water wells.