Fire Earth

Earth is fighting to stay alive. Mass dieoffs, triggered by anthropogenic assault and fallout of planetary defense systems offsetting the impact, could begin anytime!

Posts Tagged ‘hydraulic fracturing’

Australian River on Fire in Mining Area

Posted by feww on April 23, 2016

Massive fracking fires in the river burn for over an hour: Australian MP

Massive flames erupt from methane gas bubbling to the surface of the Condamine River in Quessland, Australia due to ongoing coal seam gas mining [fracking] in the region, according to locals.

[Hydraulic Fracturing of Coalbed Methane Reservoirs, also known as coal seam gas mining releases coalbed methane, or coal seam gas (CSG), a method of gas production popular in Australia, Canada, United States, and several other countries.]

River on Fire in Queensland, Ausralia!

“Large bubbles of the gas gurgle along the surface of the river before [Australia] Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham waves a kitchen lighter over the side of a tinny boat,” said a report.

“I was shocked by the force of the explosion when I tested whether gas boiling through the Condamine River, Qld was flammable,” Buckingham said.

“So much gas is bubbling through the river that it held a huge flame for over an hour.”

“Over the last few years there more and more patches of bubbles have appeared on the river and the pressure of the gas has increased to the point where it is like an over-sized spa bath. It’s a river, it shouldn’t be doing that,” said local resident John Jenkyn, who lives next to the gas field.

Read more…

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Statement on Oklahoma Seismicity: OGS

Posted by feww on April 24, 2015

Seismic shift: Oklahoma earthquakes caused by wastewater injection

Oklahoma geologists say they now believe the majority of the state’s earthquakes are triggered by the oil and gas industry’s disposal of massive amounts of water underground.

They have measured the seismicity rate which is now more than 600 times greater than the background seismicity rate, and therefore highly unlikely to be the result of a natural process.

[They have missed a number of key details, including the “signature depth” at which the majority of the quakes are occurring. FEWW Scientific Team]

The government scientists at Oklahoma Geological Survey have issued the following statement:

Statement on Oklahoma Seismicity

Based on observed seismicity rates and geographical trends following major oil and gas plays with large amounts of produced water, the rates and trends in seismicity are very unlikely to represent a naturally occurring process. Historically, the Oklahoma Geological Survey (OGS) recorded on average about 1 ½, magnitude three or greater (M3+) earthquakes each year, within Oklahoma. During 2013, the OGS observed on average about 2, M3+ earthquakes each week on average, and this rate continued to increase during 2014. Currently, the OGS is reporting on average about 2 ½, M3+ earthquakes each day. The OGS considers it very likely that the majority of recent earthquakes, particularly those in central and north-­‐central Oklahoma, are triggered by the injection of produced water in disposal wells.

The primary suspected source of triggered seismicity is not from hydraulic fracturing, but from the injection/disposal of water associated with oil and gas production. Produced water is naturally occurring water within the Earth that is often high in salinity and co-­‐ exists with oil and gas in the subsurface. As the oil and gas is extracted/produced, so is the water. This water is then separated from the oil and gas and re-­‐injected into disposal wells, often at greater depth from which it was produced. However, it is often stated that disposed water is wastewater from hydraulic fracturing. While there are large amounts of wastewater generated from hydraulic fracturing, this volume represents a small percentage of the total volume of wastewater injected in disposal wells in Oklahoma.

The observed seismicity of greatest concentration, namely in central and north-­‐central Oklahoma, can be observed to follow the oil and gas plays characterized by large amounts of produced water. Seismicity rates are observed to increase after a time-­‐delay as injection volumes increase within these plays. In central and north-­‐central Oklahoma, this time-­‐delay can be weeks to a year or more.

The OGS can document the following geological and geophysical characteristics related to the recent earthquake activity within Oklahoma.

  • The seismicity rate in 2013 was 70 times greater than the background seismicity rate observed in Oklahoma prior to 2008. While unlikely, this rate could have been potentially explained by natural variations in earthquake rates from naturally occurring swarms. The seismicity rate is now about 600 times greater than the background seismicity rate, and is very unlikely the result of a natural process.
  • The majority of earthquakes in central and north-­‐central Oklahoma occur as earthquake swarms and not in the typical foreshock-­‐mainshock-­‐aftershock sequences that are characteristic of naturally occurring earthquake sequences throughout the world in a variety of tectonic settings. However, it is recognized that naturally occurring earthquake swarms do occur and have occurred within the region.
  •  These earthquakes swarms are occurring over a large area, about 15% of the area of Oklahoma, that has experienced significant increase in wastewater disposal volumes over the last several years.
  • The earthquakes are primarily occurring on faults that are optimally and sub-­‐ optimally oriented within Oklahoma’s tectonic stress regime.
  • Both triggered and naturally occurring earthquakes release accumulated tectonic stress on these faults.
  • Most of the earthquakes in Oklahoma are occurring within crystalline basement, deeper than most oil and gas operations. However, reactivation of deeper basement faults from water injection/disposal at shallower depths is often observed in cases of triggered seismicity.
  • The majority of wastewater disposal is targeted for injection in the Arbuckle formations, which closely overlie the crystalline basement.
  • As a result of high bulk permeability within sections of the Arbuckle, pressure from water injection/disposal may be transmitted several miles from an injection site.
  • The high density of injection wells in central and north-­‐central Oklahoma combined with the high permeabilites within the Arbuckle makes identifying relationships between specific wells and seismic activity difficult.

The OGS endeavors to accurately document seismicity within Oklahoma, and is increasing its capability to improve earthquake monitoring and data products. This includes the addition of staff, as well as updating and adding seismic equipment to improve seismic monitoring coverage throughout the state. In addition, the OGS is compiling a database of known fault locations within Oklahoma from published scientific literature and voluntarily fault data contributions from the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association (OIPA). The OGS also participates in projects with the United States Geological Survey (USGS) and other researchers worldwide in the ongoing investigation of Oklahoma seismicity.

The OGS also works closely with the Oklahoma Corporation Commission (OCC) to provide information on Oklahoma seismicity and research publications on triggered and induced seismicity. The OGS collaborates with the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission and Ground Water Protection Council States First Initiative Workgroup on Induced Seismicity in multi-­‐state efforts to better understand the problem and develop a regulatory framework.

The OGS continues to make its data and data products publicly available in a timely manner, and to contribute to research and the public discussion of earthquakes in Oklahoma. As communicated in the joint USGS/OGS statement dated May 2, 2014, the earthquake hazard in Oklahoma has increased due to the increased rate of seismicity. It is important for Oklahomans to learn what to do during a significant earthquake, and be prepared. The OGS and the Oklahoma Office Emergency Management provide such information on their respective websites.

Oklahoma Geological Survey
Richard D. Andrews, Interim Director and State Geologist
Dr. Austin Holland, State Seismologist
April 21, 2015

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Two More Significant Quakes Strike Near OK City

Posted by feww on June 2, 2014

SEISMIC HAZARD
HEIGHTENED GLOBAL SEISMICITY
SCENARIO 08
.

Earthquakes Continue to Rattle Oklahomans

At least 11 quakes measuring magnitude 2.5 or greater have struck Oklahoma since May 27, 2014.  See below for a list of the reported quakes.

Ok quakes 2jun14
Oklahoma Earthquakes, 7 Days, Magnitude 2.5 or greater. Source: USGS/EHP

12 earthquakes in map area

M3.7 2km E of Choctaw, Oklahoma 2014-06-01 19:54:18 UTC at a depth of 10.3 km
M2.7 2km E of Choctaw, Oklahoma 2014-06-01 15:17:02 UTC at a depth of 6.4 km
M3.0 7km SSW of Boley, Oklahoma 2014-06-01 05:50:09 UTC at a depth of 5.0 km
M2.7 9km NNW of Caldwell, Kansas 2014-06-01 00:38:37 UTC at a depth of 6.2 km
M2.8 16km WSW of Pawnee, Oklahoma 2014-05-31 15:45:46 UTC at a depth of 5.0 km
M3.9 2km ESE of Choctaw, Oklahoma 2014-05-31 10:18:06 UTC at a depth of 5.0 km
M3.2 9km NNW of Enid, Oklahoma 2014-05-30 22:44:56 UTC at a depth of 2.3 km
M2.8 8km NNW of Caldwell, Kansas 2014-05-30 22:00:49 UTC at a depth of 3.6 km
M3.5 6km NW of Helena, Oklahoma 2014-05-30 21:42:02 UTC at a depth of 3.7 km
M3.3 3km WSW of Medford, Oklahoma 2014-05-30 14:32:16 UTC at a depth of 2.4 km
M2.8 6km NNE of Medford, Oklahoma 2014-05-27 17:56:32 UTC at a depth of 1.3 km
M2.7 16km W of Stillwater, Oklahoma 2014-05-27 02:49:32 UTC at a depth of 6.5 km

[NOTE: Some of the recent earthquakes that have occurred in Oklahoma may have been downgraded/ omitted. Editor]

Related Links

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Another Swarm of Earthquakes Strikes Oklahoma

Posted by feww on May 9, 2014

SEISMIC HAZARD
HEIGHTENED GLOBAL SEISMICITY
SCENARIO 08
.

19 Quakes Strike OK in 6 Days

The events include at least 6 earthquakes measuring 2.5Mw or greater in the last 24 hours with the largest quake measuring 3.5Mw.

Centered at  36.566°N, 97.616°W the M3.5 quake struck at a depth of about 4.3km (2.6mi) on May 8, at 20:40:32 UTC.

  • 6 earthquakes measuring 2.5Mw or greater have struck OK since yesterday
  • The largest quake measured 3.5Mw
  • 50 Percent of the quakes measured 3.0 or greater.
  • At least 19 quakes measuring M2.5 or greater have struck the state of Oklahoma in the past 6 days.
  • More than 108 quakes have occurred in the state during the past 30 days.

USGS Acknowledges Heightened Seismicity in OK!!

“The rate of earthquakes in Oklahoma has increased by about 50 percent since October 2013, significantly increasing the chance for a damaging quake in central Oklahoma,” a report quoted USGS as saying earlier this week.

However, there was no mention of WHAT, WHY, HOW, WHERE, or WHEN!

  • WHY would the smaller quakes lead to a major quake?
  • HOW, WHERE, or WHEN would a major quake occur?
  • WHAT would be the magnitude of the forecast earthquake?

USGS has correctly identified what is NOT the cause of hundreds of quakes that have rattled Oklahomans in the last year or so.

“The recent earthquake rate changes [in Oklahoma] are not due to typical, random fluctuations in natural seismicity rates,” said USGS.

OK quakes 7-Days
Earthquake Location map. At least 9 quakes measuring M2.5 or greater have struck the state of Oklahoma in the past 6 days. Map sourced from USGS/EHP.

FIRE-EARTH EQ Forecast

The next detailed FIRE-EARTH Earthquake Forecast will be released together with Bulletin NO. 96 on May 11, 2014.


FIRE-EARTH Earthquake Forecasts for California and Japan

Due to the reasons explained previously on this blog, FIRE-EARTH Science Team has suspended its research on California and Japan seismicity.


Related Links

Drilling Related Earthquakes

Fracking-Related

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Fracking Methane Emissions Hugely Underestimated by EPA: Study

Posted by feww on April 17, 2014

ENVIRONMENTAL HOLOCAUST
CRIMES AGAINST NATURE
.

Methane emissions 1,000 higher than EPA estimates

Using an airborne laboratory for atmospheric research, researchers identified and quantified large sources of methane emissions over southwestern Pennsylvania in June 2012. They discovered that emissions rates were up to 1,000 times higher than those estimated by the EPA during the same time period.

“We identified a significant regional flux of methane over a large area of shale gas wells in southwestern Pennsylvania in the Marcellus formation and further identified several pads with high methane emissions,” said the study others. “These shale gas pads were identified as in the drilling process, a preproduction stage not previously associated with high methane emissions.”

The original sampling area (OSA) encompasses all of Green County, PA, most of Washington County, PA, and parts of Fayette County, PA, Marshall County, WV, and Ohio County, WV, for a total area of 2,844 km², the authors reported.

The authors identified 57,673 wells (see gray dots in below diagram) across the counties of interest.

“It is particularly noteworthy that large emissions were measured for wells in the drilling phase, in some cases 100 to 1,000 times greater than the inventory estimates,” said one of the report authors. “This indicates that there are processes occurring—e.g. emissions from coal seams during the drilling process—that are not captured in the inventory development process. This is another example pointing to the idea that a large fraction of the total emissions is coming from a small fraction of shale gas production components that are in an anomalous condition.”

The comparative impact of methane on climate change is more than 20 times greater than carbon dioxide over a 100-year period, according to EPA.

Toward a better understanding and quantification of methane emissions from shale gas development

Dana R. Caulton, doi: 10.1073/pnas.131654611

Significance

We identified a significant regional flux of methane over a large area of shale gas wells in southwestern Pennsylvania in the Marcellus formation and further identified several pads with high methane emissions. These shale gas pads were identified as in the drilling process, a preproduction stage not previously associated with high methane emissions. This work emphasizes the need for top-down identification and component level and event driven measurements of methane leaks to properly inventory the combined methane emissions of natural gas extraction and combustion to better define the impacts of our nation’s increasing reliance on natural gas to meet our energy needs.

ch4 ppm
Regional enhancement of methane at ∼240 m above ground level (AGL) on the morning of June 21. The dashed orange box represents the original sampling area (OSA), and the gray dots show well locations. Credit: Caulton et al. http://www.pnas.org/cgi/content/short/1316546111

Abstract

The identification and quantification of methane emissions from natural gas production has become increasingly important owing to the increase in the natural gas component of the energy sector. An instrumented aircraft platform was used to identify large sources of methane and quantify emission rates in southwestern PA in June 2012. A large regional flux, 2.0–14 g CH4 s−1 km−2, was quantified for a ∼2,800-km2 area, which did not differ statistically from a bottom-up inventory, 2.3–4.6 g CH4 s−1 km−2. Large emissions averaging 34 g CH4/s per well were observed from seven well pads determined to be in the drilling phase, 2 to 3 orders of magnitude greater than US Environmental Protection Agency estimates for this operational phase. The emissions from these well pads, representing ∼1% of the total number of wells, account for 4–30% of the observed regional flux. More work is needed to determine all of the sources of methane emissions from natural gas production, to ascertain why these emissions occur and to evaluate their climate and atmospheric chemistry impacts.

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Heightened Seismicity Continues in Oklahoma

Posted by feww on April 8, 2014

ENVIRONMENTAL HOLOCAUST
FRACKING-RELATED SEISMIC HAZARD
HEIGHTENED SEISMICITY IN OKLAHOMA
.

148 Temblors measuring 2.5Mw or greater strike Oklahoma in 4 weeks

An average of 5 earthquakes, measuring magnitude 2.5 or greater, striking Oklahoma each day.

The events include at least 5 shocks measuring magnitude 4.0 or greater since March 10, 2014.

In Another Shallow Quake Strikes Oklahoma posted on April 6, 2014 the blog said: FIRE-EARTH Models show Oklahoma seismicity WILL continue intensifying

That post and all other FIRE-EARTH blog entries concerning disasters or ‘impending’ disasters in the U.S. continue to be heavily censored, blocked or buried by Google, WordPress and others. [Since when did the people have a right to know?]

M4.2 Strikes Near Langston

The latest significant quake to strike Oklahoma was a magnitude 4.2Mw shock centered at 35.890°N 97.273°W striking at a depth of 5.2km.

Earthquake details

Magnitude: 4.2Mw
Event Time:  2014-04-07 16:03:03 UTC
Location: 35.890°N 97.273°W depth=5.2km (3.2mi)
Nearby Cities: 6km (4mi) SSW of Langston, Oklahoma

Earthquake Location Map

30-day oklahoma quakes
30-Day Magnitude 2.5 or greater earthquakes occurring in Oklahoma. Updated: 2014-04-08 at 04:40UTC. Source: USGS/EHP

Related Links

 

Posted in Earthquake Hazard, earthquake report, Global Disaster watch, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Another Shallow Quake Strikes Oklahoma

Posted by feww on April 6, 2014

ENVIRONMENTAL HOLOCAUST
FRACKING-RELATED SEISMIC HAZARD
CONTINUED SEISMICITY IN OKLAHOMA
.

FIRE-EARTH Models show Oklahoma seismicity WILL continue intensifying

Magnitude 4.0Mw quake strikes 3km S of Langston, Oklahoma, followed by at least one other shock measuring 2.7Mw.

Earthquake details

Magnitude: 4.0Mw
Event Time: 2014-04-06 14:58:54 UTC
Location: 35.917°N 97.260°W depth=5.8km (3.6mi)
Nearby Cities:

  • 3km (2mi) S of Langston, Oklahoma
  • 15km (9mi) ENE of Guthrie, Oklahoma
  • 28km (17mi) SW of Stillwater, Oklahoma
  • 35km (22mi) NE of Edmond, Oklahoma
  • 54km (34mi) NNE of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Earthquake Location Map

OK quake 6apr14
Source: USGS/EHP.

Related Links

Fracking Oklahoma

[Mirrored from sourcewatch ] Oil output has doubled in the state since the start of 2010, from 160,000 to 320,000 barrels per day, primarily due to fracking for tight oil (also sometimes referred to as shale oil).
Oklahoma is part of the Caney and Woodford Shales, which are sites of drilling and fracking. The state also has thousands of injection and disposal wells, which have been linked to a 5.7 earthquake in the state in 2011.

Oklahoma Earthquakes

Oklahoma has seen a sharp rise in the number of earthquakes in the last few years. In August 2011, the Oklahoma Geological Survey examined a cluster of earthquakes in Oklahoma and found “that shortly after hydraulic fracturing began small earthquakes started occurring, and more than 50 were identified, of which 43 were large enough to be located. Most of these earthquakes occurred within a 24 hour period after hydraulic fracturing operations had ceased.”

On April 18, 2012, University of Memphis scientist Stephen Horton released his findings that a 5.7 quake in November 2011 was “possibly triggered” by injection wells near the fault that ruptured. Horton found that 63 percent of earthquakes have occurred within 10 kilometers (about 6 miles) of a deep injection well, compared to a 31 percent chance of a random, natural earthquake happening within 10 kilometers of a deep injection well. He did note that the correlation between the location of the quake centers and the wells was complicated by the fact that some of the nearby injection wells had been in operation for 10 years, and the amount of fluid being injected has reportedly been on the decline for the last five years.

In July 2012 it was reported that Oklahoma officials ignored advice about injecting water into faults, to maintain production of oil and natural gas.

A 2013 study published in Geology linked Oklahoma’s 5.7 earthquake to underground injection of wastewater, saying a decades-long time lag between injection and tremors is possible. Geologists placed seismometers in the area after the initial quake and were able to track fault rupture areas, which showed close proximity to disposal wells. According to the researchers: “we interpret that a net fluid volume increase after 18 yr of injection lowered effective stress on reservoir-bounding faults. Significantly, this case indicates that decades-long lags between the commencement of fluid injection and the onset of induced earthquakes are possible.”

In October 2013 a drilling wastewater operator ceased injections at Oklahoma’s Love County Disposal Well after a series of earthquakes. Injection began Sept. 3 and the earthquakes started Sept. 17 in the area near the Texas border, about 100 miles north of Dallas. The strongest was magnitude 3.4.]

Posted in Global Disaster watch, global disasters, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Tap Water Catches Fire in North Dakota

Posted by feww on January 1, 2014

FRACKED IN NORTH DAKOTA
.

N.D. resident sets tap water on fire

Jacob Haughney, who works in North Dakota oil fields, has made a video in which he sets his tap water on fire with a lighter.

There’s “nothing like a refreshing glass of fire…  First time I did it, it was a huge fireball [and] took up the entire sink—so that’s why I’m a little jumpy doing it. I don’t want to blow up the bathroom here,” he explains, laughing during the demonstration.

tap water on fire
How to set tap water on fire in two steps, as shown by the N.D. resident Jacob Haughney.

High concentration of methane in the water may be responsible  for the flammable water, according to the experts.

North Dakota has experienced a fracking boom over the past few years. It’s currently the second largest oil-producing state in the US, with about 912,000 barrels of shale gas per day.

Gasland 2010

In the 2010 award winning documentary “Gasland 2010,”  filmmaker Josh Fox travel across 32 states meeting other rural residents on the front lines of fracking. “He discovers toxic streams, ruined aquifers, dying livestock, brutal illnesses, and kitchen sinks that burst into flame.”

GASLAND Trailer 2010

Posted in Global Disaster watch, News Alert, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Fracking Releases 750+ Chemicals

Posted by feww on December 18, 2013

Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) releases endocrine-disruptors to the environment: Report

Endocrine disruptors (endocrine disrupting chemicals, EDCs) are chemicals that can interfere with the endocrine (or hormone system) in mammals, causing cancerous tumors, birth defects, and other developmental disorders.

“Hundreds of products containing more than 750 chemicals and components are potentially used throughout the extraction process, including over one hundred known or suspected endocrine disrupting chemicals,” says a new study on fracking.

HF6 - cooper-edu
Hydraulic fracturing (hydro-fracking) is credited as being first employed by Halliburton in 1948. The process injects a mixture of chemical additives, proppants (particles, like sand or ceramic), and water under high pressure into a target oil or gas zone in order to facilitate the flow of the gas or oil back to the surface for recovery. From 1999 to 2007, the Hydraulic Fracturing market expanded from just under $3 billion to 12.8 billion USD. [Global hydraulic fracturing market is forecast to grow from an estimated $31 billion in 2011, and  $40 billion in 2012 to $64 billion by 2017.] In 2009, the EPA and internal studies from natural gas companies themselves found that wastewater from this process contains levels of radioactivity and carcinogenic properties that are above the level that treatment plants are currently equipped to handle. Source: http://www.cooper.edu

To determine the extent of the risks involved, researchers conducted tests on 12 suspected or known EDCs used throughout the extraction process and measured their ability to influence the body’s reproductive hormones.

The researchers then collected surface and ground water samples from various sites in Colorado, including the “drilling-dense” region of Garfield County with more than 10,000 active natural gas wells and compared them to samples taken from other sites in the state where heavy fracking is absent.

Samples from the areas near heavy-drilling sites showed higher levels of EDC activity, according to the Endocrine Society, including a greater presence of chemicals that disrupt both testosterone and estrogen.

Some of the samples showing high traces of EDCs weren’t necessarily taken from fracking sites, but from areas of Colorado where known spills had been reported.

“In comparison,” the report says, “little activity was measured in the water samples from the sites with little drilling.”

These harmful chemicals “could raise the risk of reproductive, metabolic, neurological and other diseases, especially in children who are exposed to EDCs,” says the report co-author Susan Nagel of the University of Missouri’s School of Medicine.

“The rapid expansion in drilling operations utilizing hydraulic fracturing increases the potential for environmental contamination with the hundreds of hazardous chemicals used,” says the report .

“With fracking on the rise, populations may face greater health risks from increased endocrine-disrupting chemical exposure.”

“Fracking is exempt from federal regulations to protect water quality, but spills associated with natural gas drilling can contaminate surface, ground and drinking water,” Nagel added. “We found more endocrine-disrupting activity in the water close to drilling locations that had experienced spills than at control sites.”

  • Subject: Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals
  • Report Title: Estrogen and Androgen Receptor Activities of Hydraulic Fracturing Chemicals and Surface and Ground Water in a Drilling-Dense Region
  • Authors: Christopher D. Kassotis, Donald E. Tillitt, J. Wade Davis, Annette M. Hormann and Susan C. Nagel
  • Abstract: The rapid rise in natural gas extraction utilizing hydraulic fracturing increases the potential for contamination of surface and ground water from chemicals used throughout the process. Hundreds of products containing more than 750 chemicals and components are potentially used throughout the extraction process, including over one hundred known or suspected endocrine disrupting chemicals. We hypothesized that a selected subset of chemicals used in natural gas drilling operations and also surface and ground water samples collected in a drilling-dense region of Garfield County, CO would exhibit estrogen and androgen receptor activities. Water samples were collected, solid-phase extracted, and measured for estrogen and androgen receptor activities using reporter gene assays in human cell lines. Of the 39 unique water samples, 89%, 41%, 12%, and 46% exhibited estrogenic, anti-estrogenic, androgenic, and anti-androgenic activities, respectively. Testing of a subset of natural gas drilling chemicals revealed novel anti-estrogenic, novel anti-androgenic, and limited estrogenic activities. The Colorado River, the drainage basin for this region, exhibited moderate levels of estrogenic, anti-estrogenic, and anti-androgenic activities, suggesting that higher localized activity at sites with known natural gas related spills surrounding the river might be contributing to the multiple receptor activities observed in this water source. The majority of water samples collected from sites in a drilling-dense region of Colorado exhibited more estrogenic, anti-estrogenic, or anti-androgenic activities than reference sites with limited nearby drilling operations. Our data suggest that natural gas drilling operations may result in elevated EDC activity in surface and ground water.  Copyright © 2013 by The Endocrine Society

Contact: Susan C. Nagel, PhD, University of Missouri, Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health, M659 Medical Sciences Building, 1 Hospital Drive, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, MO 65211, Phone: 573–884-3028, Fax: 573–882-9010, Email: nagels@health.missouri.edu

U.S. Production of Natural Gas

U.S. production of natural gas increased exponentially, from a small amount in 2005 to about to 8 trillion cubic feet in 2011. Global hydraulic fracturing market is forecast to grow from an estimated $31 billion in 2011, and  $40 billion in 2012 to $64 billion by 2017, analysts say.

Leading Players in Hydraulic Fracturing

The leading players in Hydraulic Fracturing industry in North America are (in A to Z order) Baker Hughes, Calfrac Well Services, Cudd Energy services, FTS International, Superior Well Services, Halliburton, Schlumberger, Tacrom Services SRL (Romania), Trican Well Services Limited, United Oilfield Services, and Weatherford International Inc. Source: http://www.marketsandmarkets.com

See also

Total number of victims being diagnosed with cancer globally each year has jumped from 12.7 million in 2008 to more than 14 million last year, said the World Health Organization (WHO). [ December 13, 2013]

Posted in Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Never Mind the Frigging Environment, Fracking Must GO ON!

Posted by feww on December 4, 2013

Don’t “short-circuit America’s absolute explosion in energy opportunity” —USCC President Donohue

An Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study on fracking, due to be released in 2014, could be used to justify clamping down on the environmentally disastrous technique, which has caused a surge in U.S. oil and natural gas production, said the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (USCC) President Thomas Donohue.

“This could short-circuit America’s absolute explosion in energy opportunity that is creating millions of jobs,” he told business leaders, warning the rules were hurting the economy and “undermining freedom.”

The counter argument offered by critics of fracking, including numerous environmentalists, is that a major shift to alternative energy sources would create at least twice as many permanent jobs as the fickle fracking industry could ever offer.


Water Contamination from Shale Gas Drilling. Source. Image may be subject to copyright.
The major concern with shale gas drilling is the chemicals used in the process. Because the federal Energy Policy Act of 2005 exempted hydraulic fracturing from regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act, shale gas drillers don’t have to disclose what chemicals they use.”  Gas drilling companies maintain that the gas drilling technique they use, called hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” is safe. However, based on observation of the drinking water in numerous drilling areas, and the fate of many people who live near the drilling rigs, who are afflicted with serious health conditions, we know that fracking contaminates groundwater with dangerous chemicals.

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is a messy technique that involves forcing large volumes of pressurized chemical fluids and sand deep underground to crack rocks and free trapped oil and natural gas.

“Many believe it will be the rationalization of new federal fracking regulations before the end of this administration,” said Donohue, reported Reuters.

don
Thomas J. Donohue, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, talks to [retired] Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the kickoff of the Military Spouse Employment Partnership at the chamber in Washington, D.C., June 29, 2011. Public Domain Photo.

The United States Chamber of Commerce (USCC) is the largest business lobbying group in the U.S., and a major force in the national politics.

Related Links

[Search blog contents, where it hasn’t been fracked (hacked), for other links on fracking.]

Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Earthquake No. 19 Strikes N. Texas

Posted by feww on November 29, 2013

STAY TUNED for Important Announcements Concerning the State of Texas Starting Late 2014

M3.1 Strikes near Reno, Texas

Earthquakes in the Stable Continental Region

A magnitude 3.1 earthquake, the 19 to strike northern Texas in the past 24 days,  occurred at 06:39 UTC November 29, 2013 .

  • Magnitude: 3.1Mw
  • Event Time: 2013-11-29 06:14:10 UTC [2013-11-29 00:14:10 UTC-06:00 at epicenter]
  • Location: 32.899°N 97.626°W
  • Depth: 5.0km (3.1mi)
  • Nearby Cities
    • 6km (4mi) SW of Reno, Texas
    • 7km (4mi) W of Azle, Texas
    • 22km (14mi) NE of Weatherford, Texas
    • 22km (14mi) NW of White Settlement, Texas
    • 285km (177mi) S of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Texas and Oklahoma quakes
Texas and Oklahoma Earthquakes Location Map. Source: USGS/EHP

EQ 19 northern TexasTexas Earthquakes Location Map. Source: USGS/EHP

n-texas quakes nov 2013
List of Texas Earthquakes measuring 2.5Mw or greater since November 6, 2013 [Excludes No. 19, listed above.]  Source: USGS/EHP – Prepared by FIRE-EARTH Blog – Nov. 29, 2013.

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Induced Seismicity

As is the case elsewhere in the world, there is evidence that some central and eastern North America earthquakes have been triggered or caused by human activities that have altered the stress conditions in earth’s crust sufficiently to induce faulting. Activities that have induced felt earthquakes in some geologic environments have included

    • Impoundment of water behind dams
    • Injection of fluid into the earth’s crust,
    • Extraction of fluid or gas, and
    • Removal of rock in mining or quarrying operations.

In much of eastern and central North America, the number of earthquakes suspected of having been induced is much smaller than the number of natural earthquakes, but in some regions, such as the south-central states of the U.S., a significant majority of recent earthquakes are thought by many seismologists to have been human-induced. Even within areas with many human-induced earthquakes, however, the activity that seems to induce seismicity at one location may be taking place at many other locations without inducing felt earthquakes. In addition, regions with frequent induced earthquakes may also be subject to damaging earthquakes that would have occurred independently of human activity. […] —USGS

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Two More Quakes Strike North Texas

Posted by feww on November 29, 2013

STAY TUNED for Important Announcements Concerning the State of Texas Starting Late 2014

18 Earthquakes strike North Texas in 23 Days

16 of the quakes measure greater than M2.5 with the largest two recorded as magnitude 3.6Mw.

More than 80 minor shocks have occurred in the built-up areas of Johnson, Ellis and Parker counties in the last five years.

In May 2001, after a 3.3Mw shock occurred in Northern Texas, FIRE-EARTH Blog said: Texas quake likely caused by oil and natural gas drilling activities

n-texas quakes locmap
Map of N. Texas Earthquakes – 30 day shocks measuring 2.5 or greater as of November 29, 2013. Source: USGS/EHP

Details of the Latest Events

Event near Jacksboro, Texas

  • Magnitude: 2.8Mw
  • Event Time: 2013-11-28 08:41:07 UTC
  • Location: 33.020°N 98.209°W
  • Depth: 5.0km (3.1mi)
  • Nearby Cities
    • 22km (14mi) SSW of Jacksboro, Texas
    • 25km (16mi) NNW of Mineral Wells, Texas
    • 48km (30mi) NW of Weatherford, Texas
    • 63km (39mi) WNW of Azle, Texas
    • 278km (173mi) SSW of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Event N of Mineral Wells, Texas

  • Event Time: 2013-11-28 07:58:36 UTC
  • Location: 32.955°N 98.131°W
  • Depth: 5.0km (3.1mi)
  • Nearby Cities
    • 16km (10mi) N of Mineral Wells, Texas
    • 38km (24mi) NW of Weatherford, Texas
    • 55km (34mi) W of Azle, Texas
    • 66km (41mi) WNW of White Settlement, Texas
    • 284km (176mi) SSW of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

north texas quakes list - 29nov2013
List of Texas Earthquakes measuring 2.5Mw or greater since November 6, 2013.  Source: USGS/EHP – Prepared by FIRE-EARTH Blog – Nov. 29, 2013.

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Texas and Fracking

Oil and gas drilling rigs are moving ever closer to populated areas in Texas, causing air quality problems for the residents. “Today there are over 12,000 gas wells in the Barnett Shale surrounding the Dallas-Fort Worth area. In addition to the wells, infrastructure such as compressor stations are springing up near the drill sites, adding to air quality problems. In towns like DISH, TX – where 11 high-pressure gas pipelines and their associated compressor stations all converge – residents have reported serious health impacts and severely degraded air quality.” —EarthJustice

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Significant Radioactivity, Salts, Metals Detected at Pennsylvania Fracking Site

Posted by feww on October 3, 2013

Fracking Wastewater Irradiated and Contaminated Pennsylvania River

Duke University researchers have detected elevated levels of radioactivity, heavy metals and salts  in the western Pennsylvanian Blacklick Creek that the Josephine Brine Treatment Facility uses to discharge treated wastewater from hydrolic fracking.

“Years of disposal of oil and gas wastewater with high radioactivity has created potential environmental risks for thousands of years to come.”  —Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment.

A glass of water taken from  a residential well after the start of natural gas drilling in Dimock, Pennsylvania
A glass of water taken from a residential well after the start of natural gas drilling in Dimock, Pennsylvania, March 7, 2009. Dimock is one of hundreds of sites in Pennsylvania where energy companies are now racing to tap the massive Marcellus Shale natural gas formation. But some residents say the drilling has clouded their drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable. REUTERS/Tim Shaffer. Image may be subject to copyright.

The following is mirrored from The Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University website.

Radioactive Shale Gas Contaminants Found at Wastewater Discharge Site

DURHAM, N.C. [October 02, 2013] — Elevated levels of radioactivity, salts and metals have been found in river water and sediments at a site where treated water from oil and gas operations is discharged into a western Pennsylvania creek.

“Radium levels were about 200 times greater in sediment samples collected where the Josephine Brine Treatment Facility discharges its treated wastewater into Blacklick Creek than in sediment samples collected just upstream of the plant,” said Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment.

The new Duke study examined the quality of shale gas wastewater from hydraulic fracturing and the stream water above and below the disposal site. The study found that some of the discharged effluent is derived from the Marcellus shale gas flowback water, which is naturally high in salinity and radioactivity.

High concentrations of some salts and metals were also observed in the stream water. “The treatment removes a substantial portion of the radioactivity, but it does not remove many of the other salts, including bromide,” Vengosh said. “When the high-bromide effluents are discharged to the stream, it increases the concentrations of bromide above the original background levels. This is significant because bromide increases the risks for formation of highly toxic disinfection byproducts in drinking water treatment facilities that are located downstream.”

“The radioactivity levels we found in sediments near the outflow are above management regulations in the U.S. and would only be accepted at a licensed radioactive disposal facility,” said Robert B. Jackson, professor of environmental science at Duke. “The facility is quite effective in removing metals such as barium from the water but concentrates sulfates, chlorides and bromides. In fact this single facility contributes four-fifths of the total downstream chloride flow at this point.”

The Duke team also analyzed stream-bottom sediments for radium isotopes that are typically found in Marcellus wastewater. “Although the facility’s treatment process significantly reduced radium and barium levels in the wastewater, the amount of radioactivity that has accumulated in the river sediments still exceeds thresholds for safe disposal of radioactive materials,” Vengosh said. “Years of disposal of oil and gas wastewater with high radioactivity has created potential environmental risks for thousands of years to come.”

“While water contamination can be mitigated by treatment to a certain degree, our findings indicate that disposal of wastewater from both conventional and unconventional oil and gas operations has degraded the surface water and sediments,” said Nathaniel R. Warner, a recent Ph.D. graduate of Duke who is now a postdoctoral researcher at Dartmouth College. “This could be a long-term legacy of radioactivity.”

Industry has made efforts to reuse or to transport shale gas wastewater to deep injection wells, but wastewater is still discharged to the environment in some states. “It is clear that this practice of releasing wastewater without adequate treatment should be stopped in order to protect freshwater resources in areas of oil and gas development,” Vengosh said.

The Duke team published their findings Oct. 2 in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Science & Technology.

The Josephine Brine Treatment Facility is located in Indiana County, about an hour east of Pittsburgh. Blacklick Creek is a tributary of the Conemaugh River, which flows into the Allegheny River, a water source for numerous western Pennsylvania cities, including Pittsburgh.

Cidney A. Christie, who graduated from Duke’s Nicholas School in 2013 with a Master of Environment Management degree, coauthored the new study, which was funded by the Nicholas School and the Park Foundation.

“Impacts of Shale Gas Wastewater Disposal on Water Quality in Western Pennsylvania”
Nathaniel R. Warner, Cidney A. Christie, Robert B. Jackson, Avner Vengosh
Published Oct. 3 in Environmental Science & Technology – DOI: 10.1021/es402165b

shale_gas1-fire-earth download
Map Of Shale Gas Basins In The United States. Click image to enlarge.

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Fracking Fluid Likely Killed Threatened Kentucky Fish: USGS

Posted by feww on August 30, 2013

Hydraulic fracturing fluids probably caused widespread death of aquatic species in Acorn Fork, KY

Hydraulic fracturing fluids were probably responsible for the “widespread death or distress of aquatic species” in Kentucky’s Acorn Fork creek. The spilling occurred in the nearby natural gas well sites, according to a joint study by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The Acorn Fork, a small Appalachian creek, is habitat for the federally threatened Blackside dace, a small colorful minnow. The Acorn Fork is designated by Kentucky as an Outstanding State Resource Waters.

“Our study is a precautionary tale of how entire populations could be put at risk even with small-scale fluid spills,” said USGS scientist Diana Papoulias, the study’s lead author. “This is especially the case if the species is threatened or is only found in limited areas, like the Blackside dace is in the Cumberland.”

The Blackside dace typically lives in small, semi-isolated groups, so harmful events run the risk of completely eliminating a local population. The species is primarily threatened with loss of habitat.

After the spill of hydraulic fracturing fluid, state and federal scientists observed a significant die-off of aquatic life in Acorn Fork including the Blackside dace as well as several more common species like the Creek chub and Green sunfish. They had been alerted by a local resident who witnessed the fish die-off. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Commonwealth of Kentucky are currently working towards restoration of the natural resources that were injured by the release.

Water and fish samples collected immediately following the chemical spill in 2007 clearly showed that the hydraulic fracturing fluids significantly degraded water quality in Acorn Fork causing the fish to grow gill lesions, and suffer liver and spleen damage.

“This is an example of how the smallest creatures can act as a canary in a coal mine,” said Tony Velasco, Ecologist for the Fish and Wildlife office in Kentucky, who coauthored the study, and initiated a multi-agency response when it occurred in 2007. “These species use the same water as we do, so it is just as important to keep our waters clean for people and for wildlife.”

The gill lesions were consistent with exposure to acidic water and toxic concentrations of heavy metals. These results matched water quality samples from Acorn Fork that were taken after the spill.

After the fracturing fluids entered Acorn Fork Creek, the water’s pH dropped from 7.5 to 5.6, and stream conductivity increased from 200 to 35,000 microsiemens per centimeter. A low pH number indicates that the creek had become more acidic, and the stream conductivity indicated that there were higher levels of dissolved elements including iron and aluminum.

Blackside dace are found only in the Cumberland River basin of Kentucky and Tennessee and the Powell River basin of Virginia, and are listed as a federally-threatened species since 1987.

Hydraulic fracturing is the most common method for extracting natural gas in Kentucky.

The report is entitled “Histopathological Analysis of Fish from Acorn Fork Creek, Kentucky Exposed to Hydraulic Fracturing Fluid Releases,” and is published in the scientific journal Southeastern Naturalist, in a special edition devoted to the Blackside dace.

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Texas is Fracked !

Posted by feww on August 19, 2013

Who Needs Water in Texas?

More than 30 Texas Towns Will Soon Run Out of Water due to Fracking

At least 30 towns in West Texas are running out of water because they are diverting their precious underground supplies to cope with their oil addiction.

Highlight from the video report posted below:

  • Some 8 million gallons of water is used per day for fracking a single well.
  • Thousands of wells are drilled by hundreds of rigs every day.
  • Fracking accounts for about a quarter of the water used in some communities.
  • About 30 communities could run out of water by the end of 2013, said Texas Commission on Environmental Quality .

========

“More than 30 towns in West Texas will soon be out of water as a direct result of diverting their underground water supplies for use in hydraulic fracking. Largely unregulated fracking, it should be said. Largely unregulated fracking that is definitely putting arsenic into the ground it happens to be drying out. Before you start acting horrified, though, consider: this is exactly what Texas’ mental-midget teabillies voted for” said a report.

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Fracking Pollutes Drinking Water

Posted by feww on May 10, 2011

Hydraulic-fracturing is poisoning ground water: Report

Methane levels 17 times higher near active fracking cites

Researchers at Duke University have analyzed methane levels in 68 drinking water samples collected across 5 counties in New York and Pennsylvania and found “evidence for methane contamination of drinking water associated with shale-gas extraction.”

The potentially harmful levels of methane gas were found in the samples near drilling sites, where natural gas is extracted from shale formation using a process called  hydraulic-fracturing, or fracking.


Map Of Shale Gas Basins In The United States. Click image to enlarge.

“We found no evidence for contamination of drinking-water samples with deep saline brines or fracturing fluids,” researcher said. “We conclude that greater stewardship, data, and possibly regulation are needed to ensure the sustainable future of shale-gas extraction and to improve public confidence in its use.”

[NOTE: FIRE-EARTH Moderators find the above statement unusual and suspect that Duke University may be receiving funds from one or more of the energy companies, or their lobbyists, involved in fracking.]

“But residents near drilling wells have complained fracking has polluted ground water supplies enough that they can light their drinking water on fire. In addition, accidents at wells have led to fires and floods of fracking fluids have reached streams.” Said a report.

“At least some of the homeowners who claim that their wells were contaminated by shale-gas extraction appear to be right,” said Robert Jackson, lead author of the study.

“It comes as no surprise that natural gas is not as clean as the industry pretends,” said an attorney with Earthjustice environmental group. “The gas industry has made it virtually impossible to do base-line testing because in order to do that, researchers need to know what they’re testing for – not just methane, but the variety of other contaminants being injected into the ground.”

One reason why poisons chemicals used in fracking were not detected/reported in the study samples  might be because it would take “decades from now” for them to appear “as they work their way up from deeper levels,” a report said.

EPA scientists have already revealed that drinking water wells near natural gas [and oil] drilling operations contain chemical contaminants. They found dangerous chemicals in the water from 11 of 39 wells tested near the Wyoming town of Pavillion in March and May 2009.  They admitted that the gas drilling was a potential source.

Researchers say these chemicals may cause cancer, kidney failure, anemia and low fertility problems, and pose serious health risks to people who live close to the drilling sites, a report said.

Currently 32 states are using fracking to release  natural gas from shale formations, according to an Earthjustice.

The report was released by the National Academy of Sciences said on May 9.

Chesapeake Energy

In April, Chesapeake Energy suspended fracking in Pennsylvania after blowout spilled toxic fluid into river.

The Chesapeake well spewed thousands of gallons of toxic fracking fluid into a nearby waterway immediately after the blowout on Wednesday, said the Bradford County emergency management officials.

In March,  Philadelphia officials asked the Delaware River Basin Commission on Thursday to stop prospectors using the hydraulic fracture  shale gas extractions in the City’s watershed, until a full environmental impact assessment is conducted.


A glass of water taken from a residential well after the start of natural gas drilling in Dimock, Pennsylvania, March 7, 2009. Dimock is one of hundreds of sites in Pennsylvania where energy companies are now racing to tap the massive Marcellus Shale natural gas formation. But some residents say the drilling has clouded their drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable. Credit: Reuters/Tim Shaffer. Image may be subject to copyright.

Philadelphia City Council

The City Council, in a unanimous resolution, has formally asked the Commission to stop all fracking operations in the watershed and deny a drilling permit to Stone Energy Corp, a Louisiana-based energy company prospecting for natural gas, and all others that propose to use fracking to extract shale gas in the Basin which  supplies drinking water to more than 15 million people, including 2 million plus in the Philadelphia metro area.

Stone Energy

In march 2010,  Stone Energy spokesperson, Tim O’Leary, reportedly said that fracking posed no danger to the drinking water in the region.

Truth and Financial Profits are Mutually Exclusive

FIRE-EARTH has always maintained that the energy companies cannot be telling the truth AND making a profit both at the same time!

‘Diarrhea water’

Fire Earth has earlier noted that

In Dimock, Pennsylvania, drilling for natural gas has clouded the drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable.

EPA admits water contaminated near gas-drilling sites

Now, for the first time ever, EPA scientists have revealed that drinking water wells  near natural gas [and oil] drilling operations contain chemical contaminants. They found dangerous chemicals in the water from 11 of 39 wells tested near the Wyoming town of Pavillion in March and May 2009.  Unfortunately, their report  falls shy of concluding what causes the contamination, though it admits the gas drilling is a potential source.

Kudos to Residents of Dimock, Pennsylvania

Residents of Dimock, a small rural Pennsylvania town, have sued Cabot Oil & Gas Corp, claiming the company’s natural-gas drilling has contaminated their wells with deadly chemicals, causing sickness and reducing their property values

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Big Oil Hires Top Environmental Assassins

Posted by feww on March 26, 2010

John Kerry, Lindsey Graham and Joe Lieberman Hired by Drillers

Oil companies and industry groups have summoned the three Senators to instruct them on how to re-write the long-awaited climate and energy bill.

ConocoPhillips, BP and Shell Oil Co are demanding that states, rather than federal government, regulate shale gas drilling methods because they know it’s cheaper to buy state officials. States are known to be more lenient on allowing hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” which pollutes the water.

The big oil want a bill their way and they want it now.

“Within a couple weeks after the Easter break we hope to unveil a bill,” said the ever-complying Graham.

Lieberman, on the other hand, wants to dress the bill as even more environmental-friendly as the Big Oil have you believe.  He is aiming to have the bill introduced on the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, April 22. He gets a kick out of that sort of things!

“The longer we’ve talked about it, the more momentum we’ve gotten, but that won’t last forever, so we need to bring this thing to a conclusion,” Graham said.


Water Contamination from Shale Gas Drilling. Source. Image may be subject to copyright.
The major concern with shale gas drilling is the chemicals used in the process. Because the federal Energy Policy Act of 2005 exempted hydraulic fracturing from regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act, shale gas drillers don’t have to disclose what chemicals they use.”  Gas drilling companies maintain that the gas drilling technique they use, called hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” is safe. However, based on observation of the drinking water in numerous drilling areas, and the fate of many people who live near the drilling rigs, who are afflicted with serious health conditions, we know that fracking contaminates groundwater with dangerous chemicals.

Meanwhile, ten Senators from coastal states issued a statement Thursday saying they won’t support a climate and energy bill if it permits a large expansion of offshore oil and natural gas drilling. [How large is a little expansion?]

“Kerry, the lead proponent of the bill, needs every vote he can get as it will likely face opposition from lawmakers in states whose economies depend heavily on fossil fuels.” Reuters said.

The oil companies are demanding that information concerning the chemical composition of fracking fluids should be kept secret and  revealed  to doctors or health officials only when necessary to save human life.

Further, the oil industry is pushing for large scale expansions in offshore drilling in the bill.

“Bruce Josten, a vice president at the Chamber of Commerce, told reporters he understood that the offshore oil part of the bill would set up two levels for states to say whether they want to participate in expanded oil drilling.” Reuters reported.

“The first would give states the opportunity to say whether they wanted to have new offshore oil drilling from their coasts up to 35 miles out.”

“A second level would let them veto drilling from 35 to 75 miles out, but Josten said this was still in discussion stages and he has not seen specific legislative language on any proposals.”

The House of Representatives passed a climate bill in June 2009, which heavily relies on the doomed carbon emissions trade system, however the bill has little support to pass in the Senate.

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NY sanity questioned as state plan shale gas drilling

Posted by feww on January 2, 2010

The Test of Sanity: Clean Water or Shale Gas?

Never mind their door steps, 9,000,000 New Yorkers could have their drinking water fouled

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  warns New Yorkers about the real threat to their drinking water if they drill for shale Gas.


‘Diarrhea water’
. A glass of water taken from a residential well after the start of natural gas drilling in Dimock, Pennsylvania, March 7, 2009. Dimock is one of hundreds of sites in Pennsylvania where energy companies are now racing to tap the massive Marcellus Shale natural gas formation. But some residents say the drilling has clouded their drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable. REUTERS/Tim Shaffer. Image may be subject to copyright.

EPA is temporarily halting the drive by energy companies to drill for gas in the state’s Marcellus Shale formation, said to contain enough natural gas to satisfy U.S. demand for at least 10 years, Reuters reported.

“We have concerns regarding potential impacts to human health and the environment that we believe warrant further scientific and regulatory analysis,” reported John Filippelli, chief of the agency’s Strategic Planning and Programs Branch on Wednesday.

“EPA has serious reservations about whether gas drilling in the New York City watershed is consistent with the vision of high-quality unfiltered water supply,” he wrote in .

New York City asked the state to ban shale gas drilling in the city’s watershed last week.

You can’t have your clean water and drill for gas near it, too!

Shale gas extraction known as hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” uses toxic chemicals that are known to pollute drinking water wells near the drill sites. AMAZINGLY, fracking is NOT covered by the U.S. Clean Water Act.

Despite the natural gas industry’s denials that drilling poses no risk to drinking water, EPA has previously admitted that  fracking chemicals are in fact contaminating drinking water. According to many reports “private wells near gas installations having water that is discolored, foul tasting, or even flammable because of methane that has escaped from drilling operations.”

“Theo Colborn, a researcher with the Endocrine Disruption Exchange who has drawn links between fracturing chemicals and a range of illnesses including cancer, said the EPA report indicates the agency was taking a new look at fracturing in light of growing public concern and media coverage.” Reuters said.

“The natural gas industry can’t keep saying it’s clean,” she said.

An environmental impact statement issued in September by the New York state Department of Environmental Conservation recommended  that energy companies be permitted to drill in New York’s Marcellus Shale formation.

“We’re pleased to see that the EPA recognizes what the state so far has not, that gas drilling is entirely inappropriate with in the drinking supply for 9 million people,” said James Simpson, a staff attorney for Riverkeeper, a New York environmental group.

New York City officials have warned the city could be forced to build a $10 billion filtration system if shale gas drilling is allowed.

Background:

EPA admits water contaminated near gas-drilling sites

FEWW wrote:

Now, for the first time ever, EPA scientists have revealed that drinking water wells  near natural gas [and oil] drilling operations contain chemical contaminants. They found dangerous chemicals in the water from 11 of 39 wells tested near the Wyoming town of Pavillion in March and May 2009.  Unfortunately, their report  falls shy of concluding what causes the contamination, though it admits the gas drilling is a potential source.

‘Diarrhea water’

In Dimock, Pennsylvania, drilling for natural gas has clouded the drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable.

Isn’t it remarkable that two distant communities, one in Dimock, Pennsylvania, and the other in Pavillion, Wyoming, some 2,668 km (1,658 miles) apart, share a common fate by way of their contaminated drinking water, where the only common denominator between them is gas-drilling activities.

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Posted in Dimock, fracking, Marcellus Shale formation, NY state, U.S. Clean Water Act | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »