C & EN has reported (Methane Fouls Well Water, May 16, 2011) the results of a study linking the hydraulic fracturing of organic-rich shale deposits to the contamination of residential well water supplies.
Although unrelated to the current controversy over fracking, some of the issues raised brought to mind the decades-long series of studies that have been conducted with respect to the treatment of methane-bearing ground water supplies in Illinois. A review of this work was presented in Water Engineering and Management in 1999.
Control of Water Quality Deterioration in Water Distribution Systems:
Part 1. Presence of Methane in Illinois Well Water Supplies
Part 2. Removal of Methane at Normal, Illinois
Part 3. Studies of Methane Removal by Aeration
Part 4. Alternatives for Removal of Microbial Nutrients
Water Engineering and Management, Vol. 146, Nos. 3-6, March-June, 1999.