Tag Archives: fracking

New Texas Rule to Unlock Secrets of Hydraulic Fracturing – NYTimes.com

15 Jan

Starting Feb. 1, drilling operators in Texas will have to report many of the chemicals used in the process known as hydraulic fracturing. Environmentalists and landowners are looking forward to learning what acids, hydroxides and other materials have gone into a given well.

But a less-publicized part of the new regulation is what some experts are most interested in: the mandatory disclosure of the amount of water needed to “frack” each well. Experts call this an invaluable tool as they evaluate how fracking affects water supplies in the drought-prone state.

via New Texas Rule to Unlock Secrets of Hydraulic Fracturing – NYTimes.com.

On Shale Gas, Warming and Whiplash – NYTimes.com

7 Jan

Setting aside the fights between environmentalists and industry, the picture emerging in the science is of an initial assertion in an area with inadequate data (largely because of the industry’s proprietary bent) that is — unsurprisingly — being challenged. I encourage you to look back at Gavin Schmidt’s “Fracking Methane” post from last year at Realclimate, which I feel nailed the nuances. I hope he will take a look at the new work, too.

Unfortunately, when research on tough questions sits under the microscope because of its relevancy to policy fights, the impact on the public can be a severe case of whiplash. Journalists and campaigners succumbing to “single-study syndrome” in search of a hot front-page headline or debating point threaten to alienate readers seeking some sense of reality.

via On Shale Gas, Warming and Whiplash – NYTimes.com.

The Fracturing of Pennsylvania – NYTimes.com

21 Nov

The people of Amwell are no strangers to the price of development — the loss of a farm’s spring, the sinking of a family home when the coal mine burrows beneath it — or the price of its absence — shuttered mills and lost jobs. But given our energy needs, the use of fracking and the number of wells are likely to grow. The question is whether regulations to address environmental and health issues can keep pace with a booming industry.

via The Fracturing of Pennsylvania – NYTimes.com.

In Village’s Fight Over Gas Drilling, Civility Is Fading – NYTimes.com

30 Oct

The debate over horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, the injection of huge quantities of chemically treated water underground to free up natural gas, has become increasingly contentious across the Eastern United States, with dozens of communities passing or considering bans. But that ill will often takes its most intimate form in small towns and rural areas like this one, best known as the home of baseball’s Hall of Fame, where fracking has emerged as the defining, non-negotiable political issue.

The dispute has pitted neighbor against neighbor, and has often set people who live in suburbs or villages against the farmers and landowners who live outside them. The discord is compounded by hard times on both sides and by communication online giving everyone instant access to limitless information confirming their point of view.

via In Village’s Fight Over Gas Drilling, Civility Is Fading – NYTimes.com.

NY Attorney General Sues Feds to Force Fracking Study | The EnvironmentaList | Earth Island Journal | Earth Island Institute

31 May

New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman filed a lawsuit against the federal government today for its failure to review the environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in the Delaware River Basin.

The Delaware River Basin includes a portion of the New York City watershed that provides most of the drinking water used by over nine million New York residents.

via NY Attorney General Sues Feds to Force Fracking Study | The EnvironmentaList | Earth Island Journal | Earth Island Institute.

Who knows, maybe fracking in the Delaware Basin is part of a conspiracy by the brothers K to poison all those pesky liberals living in New York City.

How gas drilling contaminates your food – Sustainable food – Salon.com

18 May

Last year, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture quarantined 28 cattle belonging to Don and Carol Johnson, who farm about 175 miles southwest of Jaffe. The animals had come into wastewater that leaked from a nearby well that showed concentrations of chlorine, barium, magnesium, potassium, and radioactive strontium. In Louisiana, 16 cows that drank fluid from a fracked well began bellowing, foaming and bleeding at the mouth, then dropped dead. Homeowners near fracked sites complain about a host of frightening consequences, from poisoned wells to sickened pets to debilitating illnesses.

via How gas drilling contaminates your food – Sustainable food – Salon.com.

Fracking Discussion on Blogging Heads TV

23 Apr

Andrew Revkin and Abrahm Lustgarten discuss fracking (27 minutes). This discussion is going to become more and more intense as fracking itself becomes more intense. Fracking makes more natural gas available than before, but at what cost? Do we even know how to estimate the costs? What about the physician’s oath: Do no harm?

Fracking Fracks Up in Pennsylvania

22 Apr

From The New York Times:

A blowout at a natural gas well in rural northern Pennsylvania spilled thousands of gallons of chemical-laced water on Wednesday, contaminating a stream and forcing the evacuation of seven families who live nearby as crews struggled to stop the gusher.

See Catskill Mountainkeeper for more information and more links.

No Fracking Way!

18 Apr

They’re at it again.

The New York Times informs us that  “Oil and gas companies injected hundreds of millions of gallons of hazardous or carcinogenic chemicals into wells in more than 13 states from 2005 to 2009, according to an investigation by Congressional Democrats.” The wells are being drilled to tap reserves of natural gas contained in deep rock formation. The chemicals are injected along with water and sand to release the gas. The process is known as hydraulic fracturing, aka hydrofracking, aka fracking.

Frankly, this sounds like one of those deals where they don’t really know what they’re doing. So you try this and that and, if it works, it works, and you keep on trying:

Some ingredients mixed into the hydraulic fracturing fluids were common and generally harmless, like salt and citric acid. Others were unexpected, like instant coffee and walnut hulls, the report said. Many ingredients were “extremely toxic,” including benzene, a known human carcinogen, and lead.

Instant coffee and walnut shells! Shall we try a little castor oil? Maybe a little ipecac? How about some eye of newt? Toe of frog? Then comes the wool of bat and tongue of dog.

Maybe dance a little jig while they’re at it.