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Oct 21, 2014
E.P.A. faults state on funding of pollution program
Capital New York
Scott Waldman

The state Department of Environmental Conservation's “Title V” air pollution permitting program incurred debt that grew to $16 million by 2012, the Environmental Protection Agency's Inspector General found. The underfunding, if it still affects the program, could harm public health because it leaves inadequate monitoring of polluting facilities, according to the report.   [Full Story]

Oct 21, 2014
Grandmother Charged with Harassment After Trying to Speak About Fracking at Public Meeting for Another Grandmother
Public Herald
Joshua B. Pribanic

Rose Marie Grzinzic is neighbor to the “Lamb’s Farm Storage Facility,” a fracking wastewater site known locally as the “tank farm.” It’s one of 28 WMGR123 permits issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) allowing roughly 40 yellow trailers to hold up to 756,000 gallons of wastewater produced by Chesapeake Appalachian on the surface for the next six years. Directly downhill hill from the storage facility, Rose Marie has a pond where she and her sister have stocked fish. It’s where her grandchildren and great-grandchildren swim. “Shear the top of the hill off, that dump site is parallel with my pond,” Grzinzic says. “There is a possibility of a leak somewhere — I don’t like it. My daughter already moved out with her two children because she worked for Chesapeake and she drove a freshwater truck. She told me, regardless of how careful you are, you deposit or pick up anything off that truck, it leaks.”  [Full Story]

Oct 21, 2014
'That stuff can get you so fast' -- deadly gas on the rise in oil fields
E & E Newswire
Mike Lee

Temperatures below 20 degrees Fahrenheit froze the valve on the back of Greg Bish's frack truck. To thaw it, he fetched a blowtorch and put the 4-inch flame to the metal. The explosion blew him 75 feet, over a 7-foot-tall barbed-wire fence, and killed him. It might seem dangerous to apply a propane torch to the back of a large metal tank holding natural gas production waste, as Bish did that morning in 2010 just outside Elderton, Pa. But in the oil and gas industry, it's not unusual.  [Full Story]

Oct 21, 2014
Pennsylvania fines company $306,570 for pipeline violations
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

From the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection today: WILLIAMSPORT -- The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today announced it has fined Regency Marcellus Gas Gathering LLC of San Antonio, Texas, $306,570 for multiple violations of the Clean Streams Law, Dam Safety and Encroachment Act and state regulations during the construction of two natural gas pipelines in 2012 and 2013. The pipeline construction was performed by PVR Marcellus Gas Gathering LLC of Williamsport, Lycoming County, which was later acquired by Regency.  [Full Story]

Oct 21, 2014
Infrared videos show Denton oil and gas air pollution still unaddressed by regulators
EARTHWORKS
Press Release

Denton, TX -- Newly released infrared videos taken over the past three months show that oil and gas air pollution is ongoing, chronic, and unaddressed in Denton, Texas despite assurances of safety by industry. The videos make visible normally invisible volatile organic compounds emissions (VOCs) -- such as carcinogens like benzene. “These videos prove to Denton residents that, even as they go to the polls bombarded with industry promises of ‘responsible drilling’, those promises are empty.” said Earthworks’ Texas organizer Sharon Wilson. She continued, “Instead, we’re getting polluted with ongoing, long-term exposure to poisonous volatile organic compounds.”   [Full Story]

Oct 21, 2014
In Key Midterm Races, Democrats Sound Like Republicans on Climate Issue
InsideClimate News
Katherine Bagley

Democrats are justifiably worried about holding onto control of the United States Senate in the midterm elections Nov. 4. Most forecasts have Republicans winning seven seats for a 52-48 advantage, which would almost certainly spell doom for any action on climate change. But here's the real catch: Even if Democrats win the Senate by a slim margin, climate action could still be foiled for the next few years by members of their own party.   [Full Story]

Oct 21, 2014
Natural Gas as 'Bridge Fuel' Is Excellent Political Solution But Fails As Climate Solution
DeSmogBlog
JUSTIN MIKULKA

“We cannot solely rely on abundant gas to solve the climate change problem. The climate change problem requires a climate change solution. Abundant gas could be great for any number of things, but it is not going to solve the climate change problem.” This statement was made by Haewon McJeon, the lead author on a new study published last week by Nature magazine, which concluded that cheap abundant natural gas will actually delay any efforts to reduce carbon emissions.  [Full Story]

Oct 21, 2014
EPA to Senator Inhofe: Sorry, yes, we will be looking into fracking and water safety
The Colorado Independent
John Tomasic

Oklahoma’s U.S. Senator James Inhofe, one of the oil-and-gas industry’s top champions on Capitol Hill and one of the country’s most high-profile deniers of the science of climate change, has been handed a predictable defeat by the Environmental Protection Agency. Inhofe had hoped to prevent the EPA from evaluating potential threats to water sources posed by oil-and-gas hydraulic fracturing and looking into how states can manage those risks. He wrote a series of letters to the agency demanding it turn away from the plan. But in a letter to Inhofe Monday, EPA Inspector General Arthur Elkins Jr. reminded the senator that the Inspector General’s office is designed to function independently from Congress — partly to isolate it from politics and special interest pressure — and that he respectfully rejects the senator’s request to drop the fracking research.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
California looks to curb methane emissions
McClatchyDC
SEAN COCKERHAM

WASHINGTON — Pressure is growing on regulators in California and Washington, D.C., to crack down on methane, a greenhouse gas that’s 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide and is accelerating the warming of the planet. Methane, the main component of natural gas, escapes into the atmosphere through leaks in drilling operations and pipeline delivery. Sometimes the gas is vented or intentionally burned as waste by oil companies, particularly in the Bakken fields of North Dakota. The Environmental Protection Agency is considering new rules to target methane emissions from oil and gas, which account for a quarter of the methane emissions in the United States, according to the agency.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Berkeley Earthquake Expert Links Fracking To Quakes On The ‘Tectonic Timebomb’
CBS SanFrancisco


SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — As the Bay Area marked the 25th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake on Friday, there was no shortage of reminders of the power of Mother Nature and the promise of other big quakes to come. But along with trying to predict Mother Nature’s timing of quakes, researchers are also looking into how hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, can impact geological events. KCBS In Depth cohosts Jane McMillan and Ed Cavagnaro spoke with Dr. Richard Allen, director of the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory, who is working on an earthquake warning system.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
State promises to provide fracking documents by Nov. 3
Finger Lake Times
David L. Shaw

GENEVA — The latest promise from the state Department of Health is to provide all requested documents on a hydrofracking health impact assessment to the Seneca Lake Pure Waters Association by Nov. 3. That’s the latest development in a two-year battle between SLPWA and the DOH over a Freedom of Information Law request for documentation on the controversial issue.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Natural Gas Is Leaking And Warming The Climate
FiveThirtyEight Science
BROOKS MINER

The way U.S. cities move around natural gas may be contributing more to climate change than anyone appreciated: The pipes are leaking, and some are leaking a lot. About a third of the natural gas we consume is delivered to homes and businesses, where it fires appliances like furnaces, boilers, ovens and cooking stoves. To transport this gas, most urban areas have extensive networks of underground pipelines, many of which were built decades ago. Although big leaks are hard to miss (they smell), small leaks can go undetected. How much natural gas leaks out before it gets to the furnace in your basement? Until recently, no one had thought much about this.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Fracktivists Split on Supporting Hickenlooper
Aspen Public Radio
Elise Thatcher

Many fractivists across Colorado felt deeply betrayed by Governor John Hickenlooper this summer, when he announced a grand bargain over fracking. After meeting with members of the oil and gas industry and environmental groups, everyone agreed to drop ballot measures for and against drilling… instead agreeing to a statewide task force. Now fractivists are faced with a tough choice in the upcoming election. The gubernatorial race has turned razor thin, and they must decide whether to vote for Hickenlooper, or accept a more drilling friendly Republican administration.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
U.S. Oil Exports Would Worsen Global Warming, Government Auditors Say
InsideClimate News
John H. Cushman Jr.

Allowing United States oil producers to export crude would not only sway markets at home and abroad, it would also worsen global warming and present other environmental risks, the Government Accountability Office said in a new survey of experts. "Additional crude oil production may pose risks to the quality and quantity of surface groundwater sources; increase greenhouse gas and other emissions; and increase the risk of spills," said the report.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Regulations Could Douse North Dakota Gas Flares
Climate Central
Bobby Magill

Burning crude oil as gasoline in vehicles is already one of the world’s biggest sources of carbon dioxide emissions, and one of the United States’ largest sources of crude oil is the Bakken shale in North Dakota. NASA satellite images showing bright lights in the Bakken fields illustrate a side effect of crude oil production there that is also problematic for the climate. All the light coming from those fields are thousands of flames burning off, or flaring, natural gas.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Energy Department: U.S. must act now on methane emissions
Fuel Fix
Jennifer A. Dlouhy

WASHINGTON — The United States can’t afford to wait until it understands the amount of methane escaping from oil and gas wells, pipelines and infrastructure before plugging those leaks, officials said Monday. “We know enough to act,” said Judi Greenwald, a deputy director for climate, environment and efficiency at the Energy Department, during a panel discussion Monday. “There are uncertainties about methane emissions — and part of the administration’s strategy is to improve our numbers — but we know enough to take some action, and this problem may be easier to solve than many characterize.”  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Renewables not shale biggest driver in US emissions cuts, study finds
BusinessGreen


Renewable energy, not shale gas, has played the biggest role in reducing US emissions, according to new analysis from Greenpeace's Energydesk site. Many energy and political commentators have argued that a surge in US shale gas production has help replace dirty coal-fired power stations, helping the world's former largest emissions cut emissions 16 per cent since 2007.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Duke professor finds fracking footprint
News & Record
Taft Wireback

DURHAM — A prominent Duke University researcher contributed to a recent discovery that makes it easier to say what role the controversial technology of hydraulic fracturing plays in water pollution. Duke geochemist Avner Vengosh worked with other American and French scientists in identifying what they believe is the unique, chemical “fingerprint” left behind by the relatively new process of extracting natural gas from shale. “So if there is contamination, we can tell the source,” Vengosh said. “Once you see this kind of water in the environment, you will be able to say, ‘Yes, this is fracking.’ ”  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Berkeley Earthquake Expert Links Fracking To Quakes On The ‘Tectonic Timebomb’
CBS SF Bay Area


But along with trying to predict Mother Nature’s timing of quakes, researchers are also looking into how hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, can impact geological events.... Allen told KCBS that a great earthquake is imminent in an area that’s been referred to as a “tectonic timebomb” and that danger lies in how close the epicenter is to populated areas and pointed to the Loma Prieta as an example.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
SA Liberals defend vote to block 'fracking' inquiry despite election pledge
ABC News
Malcolm Sutton & Tom Fedorowytsch

The South Australian Opposition says it voted against a Greens inquiry into unconventional gas despite its election pledge to support one because the terms were too broad. It sided with the government on Friday to vote down the Greens' motion for a parliamentary inquiry into unconventional gas.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Texas voters to Denton to vote on municipal fracking ban
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

It's a Nov. 4 election vote that is getting lots of attention in Texas and beyond. The city of Denton, Texas, is voting on a municipal ban of hydraulic fracturing or fracking. Such a vote in the college town near Dallas is unheard of in Texas.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Following his fracking tour, Hawkins outlines energy plan
Legislative Gazette
Roger Hannigan Gilson

Green Party gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins wants New York to transition to 100 percent clean renewable energy by 2030, part of a larger plan he outlined to The Legislative Gazette after returning from a tour of one of Pennsylvania's most heavily hydrofracked counties.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
What does fracking smell like?
News 24
Andreas Wilson-Spath

With fracking for shale gas likely to become a reality in many parts of South Africa, it’s a perfectly reasonable thing to ask. Does fracking have an odour? Supporters will tell you that their pet technology is properly housetrained and does not give off any disagreeable scents. While that may be true for the most part, if you happen to live in an area targeted by the fracking industry, expect a significant increase of dust and diesel fumes in the air as hundreds of trucks will be shipping equipment and fracking fluid back and forth 24/7.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Was decision over Lancashire’s fracking plans right?
Lancashire Evening Post


A small majority of people say a decision to reject fracking plans in Lancashire was the wrong one. Following the decision by Fylde Council to reject plans submitted by Cuadrilla Resources, the Evening Post asked readers online if they supported the decision.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Divestment campaign urges customers to boycott banks which support fracking and fossil-fuel industry
The Independent
Tom Bawden

Customers of Britain’s biggest banks are threatening to close their accounts unless the institutions cut all ties with coal, tar sands, fracking and other fossil-fuel industries as part of a new campaign launched today.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Lawmakers Study Possible Link Between Earthquakes and Fracking
KOSU Tulsa
Kate Strum

A week from Tuesday, an interim study conducted by state representatives Cory Williams and Jason Murphey examines the correlation between wastewater disposal wells and the rise in earthquakes.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Anti-fracking camp on Wrexham drilling site
News North Wales


ANTI-fracking campaigners have set up camp on land in Wrexham. A ‘community protection camp’ has settled in at the proposed site for test drilling for coal bed methane at Commonwood Farm, Borras.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Renewables better than fracking in slashing US emissions
Click Green


Wind power, not shale gas, was the biggest single cause of the fall in US carbon emissions from coal use, according to new Greenpeace analysis published today. The findings, based on figures by the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), contradict the established narrative that touted shale gas as the biggest single factor in bringing down US emissions in recent years.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Metgasco says the NSW Government did not have the right to suspend a controversial gas drilling licence at Bentley
ABC News
Jamelle Wells

Mining company Metgasco has argued that the New South Wales Government did not have the right to suspend a controversial drilling licence. Metgasco has taken the NSW Government to court over the cancellation of the gas drilling licence at the Rosella well at Bentley near Lismore, in northern NSW.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Wasted energy
News Gazette


Lethargy has turned to litigation in what has become a battle to get state bureaucrats moving on the fracking issue. It's been nearly two years since a bipartisan legislative majority passed and Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation authorizing a new means of energy exploration in Illinois.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
GAO: Allowing Oil Exports Could Drive Gas Prices Down Even Further
Daily Caller
Michael Bastasch

Removing restrictions on the export of crude oil would boost the economy, increase U.S. oil production and lower gasoline prices, according to a report by the Government Accountability Office.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Pa. studies on shale-site air emissions incomplete, according to court documents
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Don Hopey

Three widely cited state studies of air emissions at Marcellus Shale gas development sites in Pennsylvania omit measurements of key air toxics and calculate the health risks of just two of more than two dozen pollutants.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
State studies on shale-site air emissions incomplete, according to court documents
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Don Hopey

Three widely cited state studies of air emissions at Marcellus Shale gas development sites in Pennsylvania omit measurements of key air toxics and calculate the health risks of just two of more than two dozen pollutants. State regulators and the shale gas drilling industry over the past four years have repeatedly used the regional studies to support their positions that air emissions from drilling, fracking wastewater impoundments and compressor stations don’t pose a public health risk. The revelations about the shortcomings of the state Department of Environmental Protection’s short-term air sampling reports are contained in sworn depositions by two DEP air program employees who worked on them.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
To Stop a Pipeline, Citizens Deploy Hundreds of Letters, and a Shotgun 'My brother in law told [the pipeline survey team] to leave and they did. He had a
InsideClimate News
David Hasemyer

'My brother in law told [the pipeline survey team] to leave and they did. He had a shotgun with him so they left quickly.' People living along the proposed route of a natural gas pipeline through Michigan have been bombarding federal regulators with letters opposing the project planned by ET Rover Pipeline Company LLC. In the face of mounting opposition in one county, ET Rover, a subsidiary of Houston-based Energy Transfer Partners, quietly revised its plan and rerouted the pipeline north though two counties that were surprised to suddenly be dealing with the project. The letter-writing campaign was directed at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the federal agency that will decide the project's fate. FERC is the lead agency responsible for conducting environmental reviews of proposed interstate pipelines, and as part of the process it allows time for the public to weigh in with comments.   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Red wines on the rise in New York
Messenger Post News
Julie Sherwood

NAPLES — The credit for popular red wines — think Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, among others — often goes to California. But a combination of climate change, expertise in New York’s wine industry and awareness are beginning to change that. “With varieties that 30 or 40 years ago we never would have thought of growing here, now I scratch my head and say, ‘Well, that can be done,’” said Tim Moore, winemaker and co-owner of Inspire Moore Winery and Vineyard in Naples. Moore, originally a winemaker from California and former director of grower relations at Constellation Brands, said the rise in the reds locally is something he relishes. “Our winery focuses on a lot of red,” said Moore. Consumers are surprised when they taste reds made from grapes in the Finger Lakes, he said: “They can’t believe it’s a New York red.”  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
North Dakota working to reduce natural gas flaring
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

About one-third of the natural gas North Dakota has produced in recent years has been flared rather than sold to customers or consumed on-site. The rapid growth in North Dakota oil production, which rose from more than 230,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) in January 2010 to more than 1,130,000 bbl/d in August 2014, has led to increased volumes of associated gas, or natural gas that comes from oil reservoirs. These increased volumes require additional infrastructure to gather, process, and transport gas volumes instead of flaring them.  [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
First Wind, Now Gas: Tax Breaks Face Scrutiny
Texas Tribune
Jim Malewitz & Neena Satija

Susan Combs, the state comptroller, stirred controversy last month when she said Texas’ growing wind energy industry should “stand on its own two feet.” “Billions of dollars of tax credits and property tax limitations on new generation helped grow the industry, but today they give it an unfair market advantage over other power sources,” said Combs, a Republican, upon the release of a study meant to illustrate how energy policy affects Texans’   [Full Story]

Oct 20, 2014
Duke researchers identify tracking tool for fracking fluids
News Observer
John Murawski

Duke University researchers said they have identified a new method to trace leaks and spills of fracking fluids by using a novel geochemical fingerprinting technology. In a study published Monday, the six scientists write that they are the first to describe the tracer method, which can pinpoint highly diluted remnants of the industrial fluids in waterways and other drinking water sources   [Full Story]

Oct 19, 2014
Their View | Finding ways to limit methane leaks
Centre Daily Times
Opinion/Editorial

The Obama administration spent all summer mulling new measures to cut air pollution from the booming natural gas industry. Now federal officials are nearing a decision on whether and how to limit emissions from wells, storage tanks and other places from which gas can leak. Whether you believe that the country’s fracking boom is an economic godsend or an environmental disaster — or both — you should favor measures to limit the industry’s effects on the atmosphere. Unlocking vast natural gas reserves trapped in U.S. shale rock formations has drastically cut the cost and price volatility of the fuel in the United States. That has kept energy costs down, encouraged domestic and foreign manufacturers to invest here and reduced the burning of coal, a much dirtier fuel. On the other hand, natural gas produces some carbon dioxide emissions when burned — about half those of coal — and is a potent greenhouse gas in its own right when it escapes into the air unburned. That’s because it contains a lot of methane, which, when allowed to escape uncombusted, is dozens of times more potent a warming agent than carbon dioxide. Methane from various sources now accounts for 9 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, and that number is rising with the expansion of domestic drilling.   [Full Story]

Oct 19, 2014
North Dakota health official: Methane could be next environmental issue for oil industry
Daily Reporter
Josh Wood

WILLISTON, North Dakota — Methane emissions will likely be the next big environmental issue to face North Dakota's booming oil industry according to a top official at the state's Department of Health. Dave Glatt, chief of the Department of Health's environmental health section, said federal regulations could be on the horizon due to the increased attention to emissions of the greenhouse gas from the Environmental Protection Agency and environmental groups.   [Full Story]

Oct 19, 2014
Oldest Horizontally Fracked Wells Are World's Biggest Leakers.
NO FRACKING WAY
Chip Northrup

The frackers are spinning the news about the methane hot spot in the coal bed methane fields saying that it “predates’ the shale fracking boom. It certainly predates fracking shale gas, but does not predate fracking. It fact, it is the birthplace of horizontal fracking for gas. Therefore it is the most likely place to be leaking methane. And it is. Leaking. Big time. Thanks frackers. “Methane hotspot seen from space predates shale gas fracking boom. NASA and University of Michigan scientists analyzed satellite data from 2003 to 2009, and a map of their results shows a bright red spot at the Four Corners, which is most likely related to coal bed methane extraction there, as it predates the boom in shale gas fracking. Living On Earth. 19 October 2014.” Those coal bed methane wells are the granddaddies of the fracking boom, they were the first commercial horizontally fracked wells in the world. The source rock just isn’t shale. Big fracking deal. Two major corrections to the report of the methane leaks seen from space – the coal bed methane wells are by no means “conventional” wells. In fact, they are the oldest “unconventional” commercially horizontally fracked gas wells in the world.   [Full Story]

Oct 19, 2014
Can Climate Change Unite The Left?
Popular Resistance
Naomi Klein

To avoid catastrophe, we must seize corporate polluters’ wealth. And to do that, we must change everything. In December 2012, Brad Werner—a complex systems researcher with pink hair and a serious expression—made his way through the throng of 24,000 earth and space scientists at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco. But it was Werner’s session that was attracting much of the buzz. It was titled “Is Earth F**ked?” (Full title: “Is Earth F**ked? Dynamical Futility of Global Environmental Management and Possibilities for Sustainability via Direct Action Activism”). Standing at the front of the conference room, the University of California, San Diego professor took the crowd through the advanced computer model he was using to answer that rather direct question. He talked about a whole bunch of other stuff largely incomprehensible to those of us uninitiated in complex systems theory. But the bottom line was clear enough: Global capitalism has made the depletion of resources so rapid, convenient and barrier-free that “earth-human systems” are becoming dangerously unstable in response. When a journalist pressed Werner for a clear answer on the “Is earth fucked?” question, he set the jargon aside and replied, “More or less.”   [Full Story]

Oct 19, 2014
Land records show many state parks could see mining, drilling
Columbus Dispatch
Randy Ludlow

About 40 percent of Ohio’s natural treasures — its state parks, forests and wildlife and nature preserves — could be undermined in the quest to remove valuable coal, oil, natural gas and other minerals.   [Full Story]

Oct 19, 2014
Fracking ban on the ballot in tiny San Benito County has big statewide implications
San Jose Mercury News
Paul Rogers

SAN JUAN BAUTISTA -- When President Ronald Reagan was pushing for offshore oil drilling on the edges of Monterey Bay in the mid-1980s, Santa Cruz voters fought back, approving a ballot measure that banned construction of all storage tanks, pipelines and other oil equipment in the city.... Now, nearly 30 years later, the same David vs. Goliath tactic is being used farther from shore. Activists in San Benito County have placed a closely watched measure on the Nov. 4 ballot to outlaw hydraulic fracturing, the controversial oil-extraction technique known as fracking.   [Full Story]

Oct 19, 2014
Tompkins postured to oppose Seneca hydrocarbon storage
Ithaca Journal
Andrew Casler

The Tompkins County Legislature's Planning, Energy, and Environmental Quality Committee unanimously recommended that lawmakers formally oppose a planned hydrocarbon storage site adjacent to Seneca Lake.  [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Future Investments in Fossil Fuels Look Dim
EcoWatch
Kieran Cooke

Like most central bank governors, Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England, chooses his words carefully. So the financial community—and government policy makers—sat up and took notice earlier this month when Carney, addressing a World Bank seminar on corporate reporting standards, said he was concerned about investments in fossil fuels.   [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Tax Credits for Energy Industry Are Under Scrutiny
New York Times
Jim Malewitz & Neena Satija

AUSTIN — Susan Combs, the state comptroller, stirred controversy last month when she said Texas’ growing wind energy industry should “stand on its own two feet.” “Billions of dollars of tax credits and property tax limitations on new generation helped grow the industry, but today they give it an unfair market advantage over other power sources,” said Ms. Combs, a Republican, upon the release of a study meant to illustrate how energy policy affects Texans’ wallets.   [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Placement of Butler Township well pad questioned
TribLive
Rick Wills

Opponents and even some township officials who voted for Rex Energy's plans to drill for natural gas at Butler Township's Krendale Golf Course are unhappy. The proposed well pad is barely outside the state-mandated set-back from residential areas, and opponents and officials like Joseph Hasychak, chairman of the township's board of commissioners, say they are even less happy because they realize the drilling might have been prevented.   [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Southern Illinois Land Owners File Lawsuit Over Fracking
Tristate Homepage


Fracking in the tristate remains a hot topic after southern Illinois land owners file a lawsuit against governemnt officials earlier this week. People in downstate Illinois say they've waited long enough. They believe the Department of Natural resources is intentionally slowing down their ability to frack and Illinois Congressman John Shimkus agrees. He says it's a political calculation and after election season, he expects the chokehold on fracking in southern Illinois to loosen. Shimkus says the industry has the ability to revitalize local economies.   [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Earthquake data underscore fracking risk
Rocky Mount Telegram


It was either an ironic coincidence or a portent of things to come that nearly 200,000 North Carolinians last week participated in Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drills just a few days after a geological study linked hydraulic fracking to more than 400 tremors last year in Ohio.   [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Fossil Fuel Lobby Spent $213 Million Last Year to Influence US, EU Politicians
DeSmogBlog
Chris Rose

Fossil fuel industries spent an estimated $213 million lobbying U.S. and European Union decision makers last year, according to a new report published by Oxfam International on Friday. In the U.S. alone, the estimated 2013 bill for lobbying activities by fossil fuel interests amounted to $160 million, said the report called Food, Fossil Fuels and Filthy Finance. In addition, the 40-page report said, the global fossil fuel sector receives approximately $1.9 trillion in subsidies each year.   [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
New rules could limit methane emissions’ effects on the atmosphere
The Washington Post
Editorial

THE OBAMA administration spent all summer mulling new measures to cut air pollution from the booming natural gas industry . Now federal officials are nearing a decision on whether and how to limit emissions from wells, storage tanks and other places from which gas can leak. Whether you believe that the country’s fracking boom is an economic godsend or an environmental disaster — or both — you should favor measures to limit the industry’s effects on the atmosphere.   [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Construction authorized at Freeport LNG
Fuel Fix
Jennifer A. Dlouhy

WASHINGTON — Federal regulators on Friday cleared the way for construction at a planned natural gas exporting facility at Quintana Island, Texas. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission authorized Freeport LNG to start initial site preparation and begin building liquefaction and pre-treating facilities at its planned export terminal. But the agency told Freeport LNG it cannot work on an electric line to the pretreatment plant, another pipeline to deliver gas and other equipment at the site until it satisfies environmental mitigation requirements. It is another step forward for the multi-billion-dollar project, designed to take advantage of soaring U.S. production of natural gas and Asian demand for the fossil fuel.  [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
$100 Million in Taxpayer Subsidies to Big Oil Promote Fracking in California
BuzzFlash
JACKIE MARCUS

At a time when California is literally on fire from a global warming drought, when the state is running out of water in several regions, as reported in the New York Times: With Dry Taps and Toilets, California Drought Turns Desperate, the last thing we (I am a resident of the Golden State) need is for the oil industry to contaminate our limited fresh water with dozens of toxic chemicals to use for the development of thousands of new fracking wells that would defile and poison our beautiful landscape along the central coast of California. That’s why organizers from Santa Barbara Water Guardians, Food & Water Watch, and San Luis Obispo Clean Water campaigned to establish an initiative to ban new fracking – Measure P - development starting from Santa Maria through Santa Barbara to Carpinteria for the November 4th ballot. Three weeks of hard work paid off. Three hundred volunteers and 20,000 signatures later—they successfully got the initiative off the ground.  [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
View: Conservation, Pope Francis and fracking
The Journal News
Carol De Angelo

In an argument against fracking in New York, ROAR cites the pope's exhortation that 'This is our sin, exploiting the Earth and not allowing her to give us what she has within her.'  [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Now the UN is intervening in Detroit's water conflict. Could thirsty cities riot?
The Guardian
Rebecca Burns

Angry protests over water provision have shaken cities around the world, and may determine whether access to clean drinking water is a taxable municipal service – or a basic human right t is not only privatisation that concerns people: so does exporting water. In Marfa, Texas this summer, residents protested against the city’s decision to sell water to fracking companies. They mobilised in the streets and parked cars and trucks in front of fire hydrants as a symbol.  [Full Story]

Oct 18, 2014
Senators speak out against Kinder Morgan’s natural gas pipeline project
The Berkshire Eagle
Clarence Fanto

LENOX -- U.S. Sen. Edward Markey has put the Kinder Morgan energy giant and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on notice -- he plans to closely scrutinize the company’s controversial proposal for a Tennessee Gas Co. high-pressure pipeline through more than 40 Massachusetts communities, including eight in Berkshire County. "I will make sure that Kinder Morgan and our federal regulators are using the most up-to-date information and are completely transparent about whether this pipeline will be used to export the natural gas to foreign markets and that the interests of the people are put before the interests of the oil and gas industry," the Massachusetts Democrat told The Eagle in an e-mail message this week. Markey’s statement came in response to a written appeal from the Lenox Select Board last week seeking intervention by federal lawmakers to block Kinder Morgan from using a proposed pipeline route that would cut through the town’s watershed and reservoir system as well as the heavily used, town-owned Kennedy Park.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
North Dakota well leaking oil, gas and water
WHEC
Associated Press

WILLISTON, N.D. (AP) — Workers are attempting to contain an out-of-control oil well in North Dakota, authorities said Friday. North Dakota regulators said a well near Watford City in the western part of the state has been leaking oil, gas and water since Thursday. The Oil and Gas Division said 300 barrels of oil and water have been contained and recovered at the well location. They described the incident as a mechanical failure at a wellhead. An unknown amount of mist also moved off of the well location. Regulators said they are trying to figure out where the mist settled.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Gas pipeline expansion should alarm homeowners
The Washington Post
Marcia Greenberg

Homeowners and communities are unprepared for an invasion of their cherished private yards and public spaces. The Mid-Atlantic region is facing an expansion of natural gas transport infrastructure that threatens communities’ health, safety and homes. With increased hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) and plans to export liquefied natural gas (LNG), the gas industry needs supporting infrastructure. Beyond drilling wells, energy companies are building compressor stations and laying thousands of miles of pipelines. The Interstate Natural Gas Association of America has estimated that from 2011 to 2035 the industry must build nearly 15,000 miles of subsidiary lines — each year.   [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Army corps eyes impact of [Constitution] pipeline on environment
The Daily Star
Joe Mahoney

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has raised new concerns about the potential environmental impacts of the proposed Constitution Pipeline, and is directing the project’s planners to complete provide more data. The federal agency listed its concerns in a letter to the Constitution Pipeline Co. LLC that was released this week by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the panel of White House-appointed regulators that will decide whether the proposed $700-million project is licensed. FERC is expected to determine next Friday if it will issue a final environmental impact statement for the 124-mile subterranean pipeline, which would send natural gas extracted from northeastern Pennsylvania to two existing pipelines in the Schoharie County town of Wright. The pipeline is projected to carry enough gas to power some 3 million homes.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
The Great March for Climate Action
EcoWatch
Ki Coulson

Uncharacteristic Los Angeles rains weren’t enough to dampen the spirits of The Great March for Climate Action at the launch of this epic journey. Luckily, there was a break in the rains long enough for a dry and inspiring rally at Wilmington Waterfront Park. Behind the stage, stretched across the horizon, towered an oil refinery and the Port of Los Angeles. More than 1,000 people were in attendance at the launch, and the group departed with the marchers to walk the first 2.5 miles. The power of hundreds marching in the streets brought local residents to their windows and yards in support.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Energy companies, environmentalists fund Denton fracking fight
The Dallas Morning News
MARISSA BARNETT

AUSTIN — The battle over Denton’s proposed ban on hydraulic fracturing is the latest showdown between environmentalists and oil and gas companies. The companies have been pumping big money into the campaign against the November ballot measure, collecting five times as much as the group that called for the measure. According to the latest reports filed with the state, more than half of the donations to the ban-supporting group came as in-kind contributions from Earthworks, an environmental group based in Washington. An Earthworks spokesman said that the money used for the contributions was raised through an online fundraiser and that nearly all of it came from Denton residents.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Small Texas Fracking Company Earns Title of Worst Energy Sector Polluter
AllGov


t’s not Chevron, ExxonMobil or Shell whose wells were found to leak the most methane in 2012. Instead it was a small company, Halcón Resources, which won the title for allowing the highest percentage of the gas to escape into the atmosphere. Halcón’s wells sent 6.5 metric tons of methane into the air for each million cubic feet of natural gas produced at its fracking wells in 2012. Second and third on the list were two other small producers, Bill Barrett Corp., emitting 4.4 metric tons; and Unit Corp., emitting 4.3 metric tons. It’s not until you get to fourth place until you hit one of the major oil companies, ConocoPhillips, which spewed out 3.5 metric tons of methane per million cubic feet of natural gas. Methane is among the worst greenhouse gases, 86 times as bad as carbon dioxide. So much of it is emitted during the fracking process that it can make the total environmental impact of using natural gas approach that of coal in its effect on the atmosphere.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Austin Plan for Renewable Energy at Odds With Utility
The New York Times
NEENA SATIJA

AUSTIN — Late this summer, Austin’s City Council trumpeted its commitment to a progressive energy policy by calling for a dramatic expansion in solar power generation, earning accolades from environmental advocates across the country. But the city-owned utility, Austin Energy, has balked at the council’s proposal and said it would be too expensive for ratepayers. And since then, a debate has ensued over how to be politically progressive and economically practical at the same time. Resolution 157, which council members passed in August amid controversy, directed Austin Energy to make sure that 65 percent of the city’s energy needs are met with renewable resources in just over a decade. In less than three years, the resolution adds, the utility should strive to completely replace power generation from an old natural gas-fired plant with solar power.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Join Beyond Extreme Energy Actions in DC
EcoWatch
Tim DeChristopher and Rev. Lennox Yearwood

After the historic and inspiring People’s Climate March and Flood Wall Street actions showed the potential of our growing movement, discussion is taking place about how to put that power into action. The power demonstrated on the streets of New York was a signal that we are big enough and strong enough to take our government out of the grip of the fossil fuel industry. Without question we need to step it up and organize campaigns and actions that are at the scale and boldness needed, including multi-day direct action at specific targets.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
NASA Confirms A 2,500-Square-Mile Cloud Of Methane Floating Over US Southwest
DeSmogBlog
Mike G

When NASA researchers first saw data indicating a massive cloud of methane floating over the American Southwest, they found it so incredible that they dismissed it as an instrument error. But as they continued analyzing data from the European Space Agency’s Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography instrument from 2002 to 2012, the “atmospheric hot spot” kept appearing.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Fracking: the explosive truth
The Telegraph
Geoffrey Lean

The Government's Infrastructure Bill, allowing firms to frack deep under homes without their owners' permission, will further inflame protestors No one would accuse David Cameron or George Osborne – in the decades-old jibe – of being watermelons, green on the outside, but red on the inside. But could they possibly be, shall we say, grapes, concealing militantly verdant souls under deep blue façades? Ridiculous? Well let’s remember that both took strong environmentalist positions before the last election. And now reflect that no one – despite stiff competition from protesters, regulators, and the industry itself – has done more to create public antipathy to fracking than them. Then, this week, the Government took action to make its most disliked initiative even more unpopular. Perhaps the preposterous proposition has some fleeting attraction after all.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Fish and Game Cop Tries to Gag Fracking Activists and is Shut Down by Boise PD
EnviroNews Idaho
Blair Koch

Boise, ID — An oil and gas lease auction on Oct. 15, 2014 by the Idaho Department of Lands (IDL) was delayed for about 30 minutes as protesters went back and forth with state officials concerning their right to silently protest the event. Reporters at local EnviroNews Idaho have witnessed similar silent protests in the past conducted by Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) and Idaho Residents Against Gas Extraction (IRAGE) during IDL’s oil and gas tract auctions without incident. Previous auctions have been held at the IDL’s office in Boise but this oil and gas tract sale was hosted by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, due to it’s larger conference room.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
WAFarmers seek more fracking safeguards
Farm Weekly
Rachael Andrews

http://www.farmweekly.com.au/news/agriculture/agribusiness/general-news/wafarmers-seek-more-fracking-safeguards/2714942.aspx  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
DiNapoli considers the divestment question
Capital New York
David Giambusso

State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli entertained the idea of fuel-based divestment during Wednesday night's debate with Republican challenger Bob Antonacci. Environmental advocates throughout New York state have been lobbying DiNapoli to dump fossil fuels from the state's $176 billion pension fund, part of a small but growing national trend among public pensions, universities and churches.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
First responders in Philadelphia prepare for oil train accidents
State Impact PA
Katie Colaneri

Officials from at least seven government agencies, the railroad CSX and the refinery in South Philadelphia responded to a faux fiery train accident on a rail bridge in the city’s downtown Friday morning. While there was no real emergency, the scenario was based on a minor derailment that happened in January that left six tanker cars intact, but leaning across the Schuylkill Arsenal Bridge.   [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
In our opinion: Cuomo must answer for fudged report
The Daily Star
Editorial--Donovan Richards

This whole hydrofracking controversy has been roiling our local — not to mention state and national — politics for quite some time now, and the last thing we need is for the administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo to muck things up even more. But that is precisely what has happened in the wake of some good reporting by the Capital New York website that revealed serious shenanigans by the administration.  [Full Story]

Oct 17, 2014
Energy East Pipeline: TransCanada’s Keystone XL on Steroids
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Thwarted so far in its attempts to build the Keystone XL pipeline to carry its Alberta tar sands bitumen oil south across the U.S. to the Gulf of Mexico, the TransCanada Corporation has announced that it will submit an application “within weeks” to construct its proposed, even more massive, pipeline east across the Canada continent, according to the Vancouver Observer.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
A political guide to Cuomo’s appellate court options
Capital
Colby Hamilton

When Governor Andrew Cuomo delayed a decision on whether to renominate Victoria Graffeo to the state's Court of Appeals two weeks ago, he dismissed the idea that party politics might influence his choice. "That’s just not a factor when it comes to making these selections," Cuomo said. Yet the choice Cuomo faces is, unavoidably, one with major partisan implications.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Chesapeake Energy selling 435 wells to Southwestern Energy for $5.4 billion
Market Watch
Chelsey Dulaney

Chesapeake Energy Corp. has agreed to sell a portfolio of 435 wells on the Marcellus and Utica shale formations to rival Southwestern Energy Co. for about $5.38 billion, a move that could help the struggling natural gas company reduce its mammoth debt.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Solar Shares Slide on ‘Psychological’ Link With Oil Price
Bloomberg
Christopher Martin

Plunging oil prices are shifting investor sentiment away from renewable energy and helping drag down shares in solar energy, said Gordon Johnson, an analyst at Axiom Capital Management in New York.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Anti-fracking activist faces fines and jail time in ongoing feud with gas firm Company claims the Pennsylvania woman showed ‘blatant disregard’ for injunction banning her from being near well sites
The Guardian
Suzanne Goldenberg

An oil and gas company is seeking fines and jail time for a peaceful anti-fracking activist in Pennsylvania, according to court documents. In a motion filed this week, lawyers for Cabot Oil and Gas Corporation, one of the biggest operators in Pennsylvania, asked the Susquehanna County court to find longtime activist Vera Scroggins in contempt of an injunction barring her from areas near its well sites.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Gas boom from unrestrained fracking linked to emissions rise
Business Green
Damian Carrington

New analysis shows abundant gas would cut energy prices but squeeze out renewable energy, and would likely increase overall carbon emissions An unrestrained global fracking boom that unleashes plentiful and cheap gas will not tackle global warming by replacing coal and cutting carbon emissions, according to a comprehensive analysis that takes into account the impact on the rest of the energy supply.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
NC regulators agree to hear case for fracking air pollution rules
Facing South
Sue Sturgis

The North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission, the group charged with crafting state regulations for oil and gas drilling, has agreed to consider an environmental advocacy group's petition for protections from toxic air pollution emitted by fracking operations.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Haber grilled on fracking position
The Island Now
Bill San Antonio

Democratic state Senate hopeful Adam Haber on Tuesday said that despite his support of a statewide moratorium on hydrofracking, he approves the use of the gas extraction method “in states that have more sheep than people.”  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Colorado fracking ban sparking nationwide conversation
Eagle For Texas
Ross Torgerson

A hot-button issue garnering nationwide appeal is currently taking place in the state of Colorado. According to an article by the Denver Business Journal in 2012 and 2013, voters in five Front Range cities approved bans on fracking within their jurisdictions. That ruling came as a result of resident’s concerns over oil and gas companies conducting operations within close proximity of homes, schools and neighborhoods.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Delay in Illinois fracking permitting spurs suit
WAND TV
Jim Suhr

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Landowners in southern Illinois' Wayne County are suing the state, saying its lengthy process before issuing permits for high-volume oil and gas extraction is costing them money. The lawsuit filed Wednesday on behalf of seven households names Gov. Pat Quinn and Illinois Department of Natural Resources Director Marc Miller.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Helis’ fracking proposal now open for public comment
Eagle Ford Texas
Marissa Hall

The long-debated hydraulic fracturing project proposed by Helis Oil & Gas aimed for St. Tammany Parish is now officially open for a period of public comment, according to Robert Rhoden for the Times-Picayune.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
West Leechburg revises proposed amendment to zoning ordinance for oil, gas operations
Trib Live
Braden Ashe

West Leechburg officials are proposing a set of rules for oil and natural gas operations while a tentative agreement for drilling beneath borough property is revisited. A public hearing was held Wednesday for the proposed amendment to the borough's zoning ordinance.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Natural Gas Offers Little Benefit in Fight against Global Warming Natural gas's impact as a bridge fuel to a cleaner energy future has been oversold, new research suggests
Scientific American


Natural gas will not be a bridge fuel to a post-carbon future in the absence of an overarching climate change policy, according to a study published yesterday in the journal Nature. That's because the fuel is likely to displace low-carbon renewable energy sources as well as coal from the energy mix, the study finds.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Pilgrim Pipeline project criticized in West Milford
North Jersey.com
Ann Genader

West Milford Environmentalist Renee Allessio said she and others will oppose the construction of the proposed Pilgrim Pipeline Holdings LLC across northern New Jersey when the company holds an Oct. 21 public hearing at the Kinnelon Municipal Courthouse, 130 Kinnelon Road, Kinnelon, at 7:30 p.m.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
DOMINION ADMITS THE TRUTH: COVE POINT PLANT COULD EXPLODE, TRAPPING NEIGHBORS
Chesapeake Climate Action Network
Mike Tidwell

Finally, Dominion Resources is admitting the truth: Its massive gas export facility in southern Maryland could indeed blow up and threaten innocent nearby neighbors. In fact, Dominion is now planning to build an emergency evacuation road to help some – but not all – of the potentially trapped victims. For the last couple years, Dominion has sworn up and down on its stack of documents that its Cove Point fracked-gas export plant in southern Maryland would pose zero threat to families nearby. In fact, in a brazen open letter to the community, Dominion wrote: “As the federal safety review found, in the unlikely event of an emergency at the terminal, it would pose no threat to those outside the facility’s boundaries.”   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
NY court rejects bid to revive fracking ban case
CBS6- ALBANY


ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) -- New York's highest court has rejected an attempt by the oil and gas industry to revive its fight against local fracking bans. In a precedent-setting decision last June, the Court of Appeals ruled that communities have the right to use local land-use authority to prohibit oil and gas operations within their borders. On Thursday, the court denied a motion by the trustee for bankrupt Norse Energy to reargue its case against the town of Dryden.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
IN FIRST STEP OF LEGAL BATTLE, GROUPS CHALLENGE COVE POINT LNG EXPORT PROJECT’S FEDERAL APPROVAL
Earthjustice


Washington, D.C. — Environmental and community groups took the first step late yesterday in a likely legal battle against a controversial liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility. On behalf of Chesapeake Climate Action Network, Sierra Club, Lower Susquehanna Riverkeeper, Patuxent Riverkeeper, and Potomac Riverkeeper the environmental law organization Earthjustice filed a motion for rehearing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), demanding the agency withdraw its approval of an LNG export facility proposed at Cove Point in southern Maryland. The filing positions the groups to sue the agency to challenge FERC’s inadequate environmental review of the project. Groups also filed a motion for a stay, urging FERC to halt further construction on the $3.8 billion project. The agency approved the project on September 29 over the objections of opponents who argued the massive facility, proposed by Dominion Resources, will spur air and water pollution from fracking across the mid-Atlantic region and, according to federal data, could contribute more to global warming over the next two decades than if the Asian countries importing the facility’s LNG exports burned regionally-sourced coal.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Rumbles of New Scrutiny as Quakes Continue to Surge in Oklahoma
NPR State Impact OK
JOE WERTZ

Oklahoma’s earthquake surge and possible links to oil and gas activity have been studied in scientific papers, discussed at heated town-hall meetings and explored regulatory hearings. The quakes are now triggering some rumblings at the state Capitol. About 4,000 earthquakes have shaken Oklahoma this year, data from the Oklahoma Geological Survey show. Most of the quakes have been small — roughly 10 percent were 3.0-magnitude or greater, the threshold at which seismologists say the temblors are likely perceivable.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Landowners sue over fracking delay
Chicago Tribune
Julie Wernau

But on Tuesday, Marc Miller, the head of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, testified that the agency would not issue fracking permits until rules governing fracking are codified. On Wednesday, Pollard and a dozen other landowners filed suit against Miller and Gov. Pat Quinn in Wayne County circuit court, claiming the state's delay in issuing fracking permits is akin to an illegal land grab.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
In search of safety, utilities bring in experts: each other
Fuel Fix
Robert Grattan

HOUSTON — The American Gas Association is taking a page from the nuclear and airline industries in a new push to make pipelines and utilities safer. The Washington, D.C.-based association announced yesterday that it would launch a peer-review program designed to have natural gas companies critique each other’s safety policies and practices. The goal, AGA officials said, is honest feedback from those who share a deep knowledge of safety issues, because they deal with the same problems. Peer review safety programs have been used for some time in other industries. The nuclear industry, for example, uses a particularly in-depth review program conducted by the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Oil, Gas Companies Lobby White House To Block Hydraulic Fracturing Rule
Bloomberg
Ari Natter

Oct. 15 — Representatives of Exxon Mobil Corp., Halliburton, Chesapeake Energy Corp. and other oil and gas producers met with White House officials and urged them to not to proceed with a final rule to regulate hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian lands, online meeting records show. The rule, which was proposed by the Interior Department's Bureau of Land Management and is being vetted by the White House Office of Management and Budget, will have a significant impacts on the industry, and its effects have not been adequately analyzed, according to an American Petroleum Institute handout distributed at the meeting.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Court Files: Coal CEO Robert Murray Unearths Lease from Aubrey McClendon's New Fracking Company
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

DeSmogBlog has obtained a copy of a sample hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) lease distributed to Ohio landowners by embattled former CEO and founder of Chesapeake Energy, Aubrey McClendon, now CEO of American Energy Partners. Elisabeth Radow, a New York-based attorney who examined a copy of the lease, told DeSmogBlog she believes the lease “has the effect of granting American Energy Partners the right to use the surface and subsurface to such a great extent that it takes away substantially all of the rights attributable to homeownership.”  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Calls for extended moratorium on fracking
WBNG
Rebecca Bowyer

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) The Concerned Health Professionals of New York and Citizen Action called on the state to extend moratorium on fracking. The Concerned Health Professionals are a broad coalition of medical organizations and experts. In July, the group released a public compendium of the scientific, medical and media findings that came out of recent studies into hydraulic fracturing. The compendium is a 70-page detailed document and is considered by the group to be a living document, which means that, in theory, it will be revised and updated every six months.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Hawkins tours area, hits Cuomo on fracking
Daily Star
Joe Mahoney

COOPERSTOWN — Taking his campaign for governor to the heartland of New York’s home-rule movement, Howie Hawkins on Wednesday eagerly pointed out that he is the only candidate in the race to favor a statewide ban on natural gas drilling.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
NY court rejects bid to revive fracking ban case
Washington Times
Associated Press

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York’s highest court has rejected an attempt by the oil and gas industry to revive its fight against local fracking bans. In a precedent-setting decision last June, the Court of Appeals ruled that communities have the right to use local land-use authority to prohibit oil and gas operations within their borders. On Thursday, the court denied a motion by the trustee for bankrupt Norse Energy to reargue its case against the town of Dryden.   [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Residents complain political ad lists their names without permission
Denton Record-Chronicle
Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe

Residents have complained about a full-page color ad on the back page of Wednesday’s Denton Record-Chronicle, saying they did not give permission for their names to be used in a political ad. The ad claimed that 8,000 Denton residents do not support the proposed ban on hydraulic fracturing, a reference to the plebiscite petition Denton County Taxpayers for a Strong Economy submitted to the Denton City Council on July 15. The ad listed 350 names of people urging residents to vote no in the upcoming election.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Southwestern Energy signs $5.375 billion deal for Chesapeake Marcellus acreage, wells
Pittsburgh Business Times
Sam Kusic

Southwestern Energy Co. has signed a deal to acquire 413,000 net acres in West Virginia and Pennsylvania from Chesapeake Energy Corp. for $5.375 billion, Southwestern announced Thursday morning. Included in the deal are 256 producing Marcellus and Utica wells and 179 unoperated or nonproducing wells that tap those shales. The wells yielded a net production of 336 million equivalent cubic feet of gas per day in September, the company said.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Study finds natural gas no cleaner than coal
Al Jazeera America
Tarek Bazley

A new study published in the journal Nature has concluded that the growing use of natural gas will result in an overall increase in global carbon dioxide emissions - rather than the decrease claimed by some analysts. The recent boom in the use of natural gas has been driven by the development of new technologies, in particular fracking and horizontal drilling.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
Cuomo book-signing draws protesters and some fans
Capital New York
Laura Nahmias

At Governor Andrew Cuomo’s book signing Wednesday evening at the Barnes & Noble in Union Square, there were more anti-fracking protesters outside the store than customers inside buying his memoir, All Things Possible: Setbacks and Success in Politics and Life. At 5:45 p.m., more than an hour before the Manhattan event began, nearly a dozen police officers, a dozen anti-fracking protesters (their numbers would grow significantly) and a half-dozen reporters had gathered along the sidewalk outside the store. Reporters and protesters were kept behind a metal police barricade before eventually being escorted to the store’s fourth floor, where the signing would take place. There, guests were divided along two rope lines. First in line were 35 to 40 “V.I.P.s,” including some with close ties to the governor’s office, such as SUNY trustee and former Clinton administration official Richard Socarides, ABNY chairman and real estate mogul Bill Rudin, and former New York City Republican mayoral candidate George McDonald.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT AGAINST FRACKING IN S.AFRICA
CNBC Africa
Jay Caboz

Fracking could be the 100 billion US dollar energy game changer that Africa needs at the risk of destroying the Karoo. It’s has sparked conflict before a drill has touched the earth. Like his fellow 3,000 farmers, Dickie Ogilvie won’t let fracking vie without a fight. Ogilvie gave up teaching to help his wife, Colleen, take over her brother’s farm, Doorndraai, 100 kilometers south west of Graaff Reinet. His fears have led him to pledge 3 rand for every hectare on his 14,000 hectare farm to fight fracking in court. Most farmers across the Karoo are as trenchant as him.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
FRACKING: ONE MAN’S MEAT IS ANOTHER MAN’S POISON
CNBC Africa
Jay Caboz

Every day, they fight cutting winds and soaring temperatures in bone-dry valleys to nurture their stock. To the visitor, the Karoo is a barren place between Cape Town and Johannesburg. Here the communities are small, Twitter is scarce and there are more goats than people. Soon there could be more rumbling trucks than goats. This is all because of a mining method called hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. It’s been hailed a savior of the United States (US) economy, during the 2008 recession, making it one of the largest producers of natural gas in the world. It is now on its way to South Africa, because the government and oil and gas companies believe, beneath the Karoo, lies an estimated 30 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of natural gas; enough to fuel the country’s economy for up to 20-30 years. It could also bring 100 billion US dollars and thousands of jobs.  [Full Story]

Oct 16, 2014
FORTY-FIVE YEARS AGO, THE GOVERNMENT USED SUBTERRANEAN NUKES TO DIG FOR NATURAL GAS
Vice
Josiah M. Hesse

On the afternoon of September 10, 1969, Chester McQueary laid his belly onto the dirt of rural Rulison, Colorado. A few seconds later, a nuclear bomb two and a half times the size of the one that dropped on Hiroshima exploded less than two miles below him. As a 33-year-old anti-nuke hippie, McQueary was protesting the blast, an experimental operation attempting to retrieve natural gas from deep below the earth. A five-mile quarantine zone had been set up around the site with the understanding that the blast would not go off if humans remained within the boundary. But the project had experienced repeated delays already, and despite McQueary and his crew setting off smoke flares to announce their presence, the 40-kiloton nuclear device was, in fact, detonated.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Booming Natural Gas Won't Slow Global Warming Natural gas burns more cleanly than coal, but that's not enough to reduce global carbon emissions, researchers say.
US News
Alan Neuhauser

Natural gas won’t save us. Despite the lofty claims of industry groups and President Barack Obama, the so-called natural gas revolution will not discernibly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, putting the globe no closer to averting catastrophic climate change, according to five independently developed models conducted by teams of researchers around the world and summarized in a new paper Wednesday.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Fracking boom could mean up to 12% more carbon emissions
The Conversation
Erik Bichard

The consistent message from those who would seek to exploit shale gas is that it has three distinct advantages over existing forms of fossil fuel energy: it is cheap, it has a lower influence on global warming, and it reduces the reliance in foreign imports. In the UK the ability of shale gas to replace substantial amounts of other energy sources is unproven. The International Energy Agency (IEA) says even high levels of shale gas extraction by the middle of the century would still only leave shale on an equal footing with gas, coal and oil.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
How breast cancer research benefits from fracking and other abominations
The Guardian


Baker Hughes, a maker of fracking drill bits, has produced them in bright pink to support breast cancer research. Here’s how to tell if your company is a philanthropic hypocrite  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Waynesburg officials investigate dumping of fracking wastewater
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Don Hopey

Waynesburg officials and the state Department of Environmental Protection are investigating the dumping of up to 4,000 gallons of what is believed to be fracking wastewater into the Greene County borough’s sewer system. The fluid dump was discovered on the morning of Sept. 30 by workers at the Waynesburg Sewage Treatment Plant who noticed a spike on sewage flow meters and a gray, milky substance flowing through the plant, according to Bryan Cumberledge, assistant borough manager.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Fracking firm lodging appeal after council rejects its planning application West Sussex county council refused application by Celtique Energie for oil and gas exploration near South Downs national park
The Guardian
Press Association

West Sussex county council’s planning committee refused the application by Celtique Energie for oil and gas exploration near Wisborough Green, a conservation area just outside the South Downs national park, in July. The refusal, thought to be the first time a council had rejected a planning application by a fracking company, was welcomed by local campaigners and environmentalists.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Series of small quakes linked to fracking
Columbus Dispatch
Julie Carr Smyth

A new study says fracking triggered hundreds of small, unnoticeable earthquakes in eastern Ohio late last year, months before the state first linked seismic activity to the much-debated oil-and-gas extraction technique. The report, which appears in the November issue of the journal Seismological Research Letters, identified nearly 400 tremors on a previously unmapped fault in Harrison County between Oct. 1 and Dec. 13, 2013.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Sole Debate in Race for New York State Comptroller Is Gentlemanly
The New York Times
JESSE McKINLEY

There were a few moments of feisty discussion, particularly on issues that the comptroller has little say over — like fracking, which Mr. Antonacci supports and Mr. DiNapoli does not — and a central responsibility of the job: deciding where the state invests its money.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
NEIL YOUNG: IMPEACH OBAMA – FOR FRACKING
Breitbart


On Tuesday’s broadcast of Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report,” rock legend Neil Young was asked, based on his views of the Iraq war under President George W. Bush, which at the time Young deemed to be an impeachable offense, if President Barack Obama’s military actions in Iraq and Syria against ISIS warrant impeachment as well. Instead Young said Obama should be impeached for another offense – for allowing fracking in the United States. Partial transcript as follow:  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Yates County Opposes Gas Storage in Reading
Finger Lakes Daily News


The Yates County Legislature passed a resolution Tuesday in opposition of gas storage in salt caverns along Seneca Lake in neighboring Schuyler County. The vote was 12-2. Following over 45 minutes of public comment from residents of the county and others within the region, legislators had a short discussion and voted against Crestwood Midstream's proposed gas storage facilities in the town of Reading. Following the vote, the legislature received a standing ovation.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Natural gas boom will not slow climate change – study
RTTC
Megan Darby

Natural gas burns more cleanly than coal and advocates say it can provide part of the answer to climate change. In the US, a glut of cheap shale gas has driven a switch away from coal, helping to cut its carbon emissions. New techniques such as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, to get gas out of the ground have opened up new areas of exploration. But researchers across five countries have found a global dash for gas will not, on its own, slow global warming.f  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
The Risks of Cheap Water
NY Times
Eduardo Porter

This summer, California’s water authority declared that wasting water — hosing a sidewalk, for example — was a crime. Next door, in Nevada, Las Vegas has paid out $200 million over the last decade for homes and businesses to pull out their lawns. It will get worse. As climate change and population growth further stress the water supply from the drought-plagued West to the seemingly bottomless Great Lakes, states and municipalities are likely to impose increasingly draconian restrictions on water use. Such efforts may be more effective than simply exhorting people to conserve. In August, for example, cities and towns in California consumed much less water — 27 billion gallons less —than in August last year. But the proliferation of limits on water use will not solve the problem because regulations do nothing to address the main driver of the nation’s wanton consumption of water: its price. “Most water problems are readily addressed with innovation,” said David G. Victor of the University of California, San Diego. “Getting the water price right to signal scarcity is crucially important.”  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Marcellus Shale production may surpass 16B cubic feet daily in November
Pittsburgh Business Times
Sam Kusic

he U.S. Energy Information Administration projects that Marcellus Shale gas production will exceed 16 billion cubic per day in November, revising a previous estimate that production might surpass the mark this month. In September, the administration forecasted production would reach 16.06 billion cubic feet per day this month. But in the more recent estimate, issued on Tuesday, it said production might actually be around 15.8 billion cubic feet per day. It projected that production would reach 16.04 billion cubic feet per day next month. The estimates are based on rig counts and production.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Lawmakers urge truck-safety summit for Marcellus Shale industry
Pittsburgh Business Times
Paul J. Gough

Two state lawmakers want a summit on truck safety in the wake of recent accidents and incidents involving Marcellus Shale vehicles. State Sen. Tim Solobay, D-Canonsburg, and state Rep. Pam Snyder, D-Waynesburg, said they've heard plenty of complaints about trucks going to and from natural gas drilling sites. "It looks like we have a lot of incidents involving individual drivers and independent contractors, but there is a bigger picture developing, and that’s what we want to look at," said Solobay in a prepared statement Tuesday. "We’re asking everyone with vehicles on the road in the region to examine their procedures and help us find a solution that preserves both economic growth and public safety."  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Sixteen for '16 - Number 16: No Tar Sands, No Offshore Drilling, No Hydraulic Fracturing and Definitely No More Coal
EIN Newsdesk
Salvatore Babones, Truthout

In this series, sociologist Salvatore Babones previews 16 topics that should be on every progressive's agenda for 2016. Global warming is caused by the burning of fossil fuels. (1) It's very simple, really. Digging things up and burning them takes carbon out of the ground and puts it into the atmosphere. Carbon dioxide and other gases in the atmosphere trap warmth through a well-understood and universally accepted mechanism called the greenhouse effect. (2) Human beings really are on course to extract all fossil fuels, wherever they are, anywhere in the world. No deposit of oil, coal or natural gas is too deep, too remote or too diffuse to keep us from getting it out of the ground and burning it. Anything existing in or on the surface of the earth that can be burned, will be burned. Case in point: the Canadian tar sands. Tar sands are "a combination of clay, sand, water, and bitumen, a heavy black viscous oil." (3) They are mined in giant, open-pit mines or by pumping hot water into the ground to scald the oil out of the solid rock. The Athabasca tar sands are at the heart of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline project, which former NASA scientist James Hansen famously called "game over" for the earth's climate. (4) Tar sands may be about as bad as things get for the environment, but conventional sources of fossil fuels aren't that much better. Who could forget the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that 4.9 million barrels of oil were released into the ocean as a result of this single accident. (5) As if this weren't extreme enough, along came fracking. Hydraulic fracturing - "fracking" - involves the pumping of millions of gallons of chemical-laced water into the ground in order to crack open rocks so that tiny bubbles of natural gas trapped inside them can be liberated and brought up to the surface. Does this sound like a good idea? Thousands of fracking-induced earthquakes say no. (6) Sensible or not, fracking is economical for two reasons only. First, in the 1990s, the development of directional drilling made it possible to drill a gas well that follows the contours of the narrow shale formations in which shale gas is trapped. (7) Second, in 2005, Congress specifically exempted "hydraulic fracturing operations" from regulation by the EPA. (8) Frackers can poison your water and you have no right to know about it, never mind do anything about it. Josh Fox's 2010 documentary Gasland made flammable drinking water and exploding kitchen taps a staple of internet video entertainment. But 2010 was just the beginning of the fracking boom. Natural gas extraction from the Marcellus shale formation (on which Fox's land sits) expanded by more than 650 percent between 2010 and 2014 - and is still growing rapidly. (9) And then there's coal. It is hard to believe that such a thing as "mountaintop removal mining" actually exists, but there it is. Mountaintop removal mines approved between 1992 and 2002 were projected to destroy at least 1,200 miles of streams, and the EPA estimates that mines approved between 2002 and 2012 will have roughly the same impact. (10) Mountaintop removal started before 1992 and continued after 2012, so well over 2,400 miles of streams have presumably been written off. They won't be coming back. Neither will the mountains. That's the thing about mountains: No one is building new ones, at least not in our lifetimes. Entire mountains the size of small cities are being destroyed forever in return for a maximum of 10 to 15 years of mining productivity. (11) That is nothing short of madness - unless, of course, you like to hunt elk or play golf on the newly flattened land. (12) At least three golf courses have been built on former mountaintop removal mining sites across Appalachia. (13) Tar sands, offshore oil, shale gas and coal mining: All this means carbon, and carbon of the worst kind. Forget about 2 degrees Celsius and forget about mere "climate change"; the way things are going, the earth will be a Venus-like hell planet before we're through with it. If Hollywood is right, whenever aliens invade the earth, the USA comes to the rescue. The United States made the world safe for democracy in World War I, defeated fascism in World War II and undermined communism while avoiding World War III. President George W. Bush launched a global war on terror that President Obama is still fighting today. Maybe it is time for a different kind of war, or better yet, a plan. We need a plan to stop global warming, if not now, then soon. We need to get out of our cars, and to do that we need to relearn how to live together in ways that don't require cars. We need to keep the earth's remaining fossil fuels firmly in the ground. We need to burn less and plant more. It is almost certainly too late to prevent catastrophic global warming. It is perhaps not too late to save the earth itself. If government of the people, by the people and for the people is not to perish from the earth, then there must be an earth. It is our responsibility to work together to ensure that there is.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
This New Study Explains Why Fracking Won't Solve Climate Change
Mother Jones
Tim McDonnell

For President Obama, fracking is a key weapon against global warming. Abundant natural gas, he said in his State of the Union address this year, is a "bridge fuel" to ubiquitous renewable energy—the key to securing economic growth "with less of the carbon pollution that causes climate change." Not everyone agrees. In fact, the debate over whether natural gas is the antidote to our deadly addiction to coal, or a faux climate change solution that will stall the clean energy revolution, is one of the most hotly contested environmental questions of the day. It has produced a host of recent studies examining complex questions about global energy markets and the specific chemistry of various greenhouse gases. The latest volley in that debate is out today in a new paper in Nature.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Scientists Say Fracking Will Not Lead to Lower Greenhouse Gas Emissions
EcoWatch
Alex Kirby

The argument that fracking can help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is misguided, according to an international scientific study, because the amount of extra fossil fuel it will produce will cancel out the benefits of its lower pollution content.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Maloney, Hayworth find common ground on environment
Pughkeepsie Journal


BEDFORD – Former Republican Rep. Nan Hayworth said Tuesday she would be an environmental advocate within the Republican majority in the House if she's elected in November. Freshman Democratic Rep. Sean Maloney, whom Hayworth is seeking to unseat, agrees Hayworth's environmental stances rank her high among House Republicans. But he said that means little given that Republicans have made the House "one of the most radical" in history and have made repeated efforts to roll back the Environmental Protection Agency's authority to regulate for air and water quality  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Study: Natural gas surge won’t slow global warming
Washingtonn Post
Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Cheap and plentiful natural gas isn’t quite a bridge to a brighter energy future as claimed and won’t slow global warming, a new study projects. Abundant natural gas in the United States has been displacing coal, which produces more of the chief global warming gas carbon dioxide.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
We Can Do Better: The Unintended Consequences of EPA’s “Clean Power Plan”
Renewable EnergyWorld
Steven Corneli

Most people agree that it is time to seriously reduce global emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG). EPA is actually required by law to reduce power and industrial GHG emissions in the U.S., and they certainly deserve an “E” for effort so far. But effort without good outcomes doesn’t really count. Sadly, the EPA’s rule as proposed would create unintended consequences that will prevent essential long-term carbon reductions in the U.S. power sector. Here’s why: the rule’s main approach to reducing emissions is — not renewables, not energy efficiency, not even carbon capture or nuclear, but — switching practically overnight from coal to natural gas-fired electricity. This is like a binge diet to lose weight in two weeks (a really bad idea) by switching from donuts to bagels (an even worse one).  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Udall drilled on fracking in new Colorado Senate ads Republicans attack record on energy boom
Washington Times
Valerie Richardson

DENVER — Democratic Sen. Mark Udall’s stance on hydraulic fracturing is coming under fire in the latest wave of ads in the razor-close Colorado Senate race. The National Republican Senatorial Committee released Wednesday the second video in its cheeky “Mark Udall Dynasty” series, blasting the Democrat for apparently telling a constituent that fracking “keeps us locked into the old system.”   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Fracking Boom Has Had Devastating Consequences For Motorists
DeSmog Blog


With several shale fields in play—including Eagle Ford and Permian Basin, which together are pumping out over 3.2 million barrels per day—Texas has contributed heavily to the fracked oil boom. Apparently, motorists have paid a heavy price for that oil.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Scientists refute lower emissions claim for fracking
Climate News Network
Alex Kirby

LONDON, 15 October 2014 - The argument that fracking can help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is misguided, according to an international scientific study, because the amount of extra fossil fuel it will produce will cancel out the benefits of its lower pollution content. The study, published today in the journal Nature, recognises that technologies such as fracking have triggered a boom in natural gas. But the authors say this will not lead to a reduction of overall greenhouse gas emissions.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Fracking Poisons California's Water
Huffington Post
Dr. Reese Halter

Nearly 3 billion gallons (or the equivalent of 454 Olympic swimming pools) of oil industry wastewater were illegally dumped into central California's aquifer supplying drinking water and irrigation to farmers.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Study links hundreds of eastern Ohio quakes to fracking
Vindy.com


A new study suggests that fracking triggered hundreds of too-small-to-be-felt earthquakes in eastern Ohio late last year, months before the state first linked seismic activity to the oil-and-gas extraction technique in Poland Township. The report, which appears in the November issue of the journal Seismological Research Letters, identified nearly 400 tremors on a previously unmapped fault in Harrison County between Oct. 1 and Dec. 13, 2013.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Patrick administration launches review of state's natural gas needs
Boston Business Journal
Jon chesto

There’s at least one big question that he hasn’t answered yet: Should we have a new natural gas pipeline into the state, possibly subsidized by an electricity tax? His administration took an important step toward an answer today. Synapse Energy Economics gathered its first meeting of stakeholders, such as energy industry types and environmentalists, as the Cambridge consultancy attempts to address this issue after being hired by state officials earlier this month, to the tune of $250,000.   [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
Patrick administration launches review of state's natural gas needs
Boston Business Journal
Jon Chesto

With just a few months left in the corner office, it’s a natural time for Gov. Deval Patrick to think about his legacy. There’s at least one big question that he hasn’t answered yet: Should we have a new natural gas pipeline into the state, possibly subsidized by an electricity tax? His administration took an important step toward an answer today. Synapse Energy Economics gathered its first meeting of stakeholders, such as energy industry types and environmentalists, as the Cambridge consultancy attempts to address this issue after being hired by state officials earlier this month, to the tune of $250,000.  [Full Story]

Oct 15, 2014
HOW PUTIN BECAME A CENTRAL FIGURE IN THE FIRST EVER VOTE TO BAN FRACKING IN TEXAS
ThisChangesEverything
Steve Horn

On September 8, a Texas state regulatory agency sent a letter to United States Secretary of State John Kerry, suggesting that U.S. anti-fracking activists are receiving funding from Russian President Vladimir Putin. “It is reasonable to assume,” Texas Railroad Commissioner David Porter wrote, “that their intention is to increase their market share of natural gas production and distribution as Russia is the second largest producer of natural gas in the world.” This move by Texas coincides with the lead up to an Election Day referendum on the state’s first proposed city-wide fracking ban, to be held in the city of Denton on November 4. But this particular move by Texas to discredit activists is not a new one. In fact, it highlights one way climate campaigners have previously been tracked and monitored by intelligence agencies, public relations firms, and their powerful clients to create “actionable intelligence.” That is, information that could help undermine and eventually defeat social movements. The letter was publicized in a press release headlined, “Porter Exposes Putin Plot to Hurt Texas Economy.” It offers no direct proof to back up the Putin claims, only citing “multiple reports” linking Russia’s massive state-owned natural gas company Gazprom to public relations and lobbying firms, such as industry giant Ketchum. Porter also wrote that Russia’s strategy includes bankrolling anti-fracking environmental groups and pushing propaganda by distributing the Academy Award-nominated documentary Gasland, which Porter called “an incredibly deceitful film.” Kerry has not yet responded publicly to the letter. And Carlos Espinosa, the Texas Railroad Commission’s director of special projects, admitted in emails obtained under the Texas Public Information Act that there was no actual paper trail corroborating the Putin story, only claims from others in the news.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
A Pennsylvania Mom Explains Why She Doesn’t Want Fracking Near Her Daughters’ School
ThinkProgress
EMILY ATKIN

A group of concerned Pennsylvania parents have launched a legal challenge against their town council’s recent decision to allow five horizontal gas wells about a half mile from the Mars School District, a campus of 3,200 children. The four parents, joined by the environmental groups Delaware Riverkeeper Network and Clean Air Council, contend that the Middlesex Township Board of Supervisors violated Pennsylvania’s state Constitution when it voted to change the township’s zoning laws back in August. Those changes legally opened up Middlesex’s residential and agricultural lands for potential drilling, despite the protests of parents and residents concerned about air pollution, water contamination, and noise.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Climate Change Deemed Growing Security Threat by Military Researchers
The New York Times
CORAL DAVENPORT

WASHINGTON — The accelerating rate of climate change poses a severe risk to national security and acts as a catalyst for global political conflict, a report published Tuesday by a leading government-funded military research organization concluded. The CNA Corporation Military Advisory Board found that climate change-induced drought in the Middle East and Africa is leading to conflicts over food and water and escalating longstanding regional and ethnic tensions into violent clashes. The report also found that rising sea levels are putting people and food supplies in vulnerable coastal regions like eastern India, Bangladesh and the Mekong Delta in Vietnam at risk and could lead to a new wave of refugees.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Branstad won't stop Bakken oil pipeline through Iowa
DesMoines Register
William Petroski

Gov. Terry Branstad is rejecting pleas from a coalition of Iowa community and environmental activists who asked have him to block plans for a North Dakota crude oil pipeline that would cut diagonally through 18 Iowa counties. The activists gave Branstad's aides petitions Tuesday with 2,300 signatures that request the Republican governor to sign a state executive order to stop the proposed Bakken oil pipeline, officially known as the "Dakota Access" pipeline.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Fracking Linked to More Ohio Earthquakes
Live Science
Becky Oskin

Another rare case of fracking-caused earthquakes has jolted Ohio. A new study connects some 400 micro-earthquakes in Harrison County, near the town of Canton, to hydraulic fracturing wells. The three wells operated from September through October 2013 in the Utica Shale. Ten of the quakes registered between magnitude 1.7 and magnitude 2.2, but the tremors were too deep to cause damage or to be easily felt by people, according to the study, published today (Oct. 14) in the journal Seismological Research Letters.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Has OPEC Check Mated US Shale Producers?
Energy Policy Forum
Deborah Lawrence

Crude prices have been tumbling lately. Brent crude, the global barometer, fell below $90/ bbl while WTI has tumbled lower to about $85/bbl. Pundits who extol conventional wisdom have been in a froth. As giddiness about US shale production emerged over the past few years, these pundits proclaimed that the shale revolution would make the world awash in oil but prices would not come down due to geopolitical events. This is a typically narcissistic view. They recently began boasting that the U.S. had now passed Saudi Arabia and Russia to become the world’s largest producer. What they neglected to brag about are the underlying fundamentals of this shale revolution: the junk debt, the deteriorating financials, the rapid depletion of wells and the difficulty of raising capital as large sophisticated investors quietly exit the back door. But perhaps most damning is the comparison of costs with Saudi and Russian projects. This is truly the Achilles heel of US tight oil. An aspect which typical conventional wisdom pundits in the US rarely address. And this has more to do with the decline in crude prices than they care to admit.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Exxon, Shell Carbon Emissions Rise Though Pumping Drops
The Wall Street Journal
DANIEL GILBERT

Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell PLC are emitting more carbon dioxide despite tapping less oil and natural gas. Greenhouse-Gas Increase Reflects Difficulty in Tapping New Sources of Energy  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
States Can Produce Twice as Much Renewable Electricity as EPA Calculated, Science Group Finds
Union of Concerned Scientists


WASHINGTON (October 14, 2014) – States can cost-effectively produce nearly twice as much renewable electricity as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) calculated they could under its Clean Power Plan, according to a proposal from the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). The science group found that increased renewable electricity growth could allow states to collectively cut heat-trapping carbon emissions from power plants 40 percent below 2005 levels by 2030 rather than the 30 percent reduction EPA included in its draft rule. Overall, the EPA calculated that renewables could comprise 12 percent of U.S. electricity sales in 2030, marginally more than business-as-usual projections from the Energy Information Administration. If fully implemented, UCS’s proposed modified approach for setting state targets would result in renewables supplying at least 23 percent of national power sales by 2030.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Rachel Maddow: Chevron Spends Big Bucks to Buy Local Election
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

In August 2012, a rusted pipe inside a massive Chevron refinery in Richmond, California caused an explosion and fire that spewed toxic chemicals into the air, sending 15,000 people to the hospital for treatment. Since then, the city of Richmond has been eager to impose new safety regulations on Chevron. A year after the fire, it filed a lawsuit against the company, citing its record of safety violations and disregard for public welfare going back to 1989. Chevron’s response? As Rachel Maddow reported, they’re trying to buy the city government of Richmond.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Congressman Issa Accuses EPA of Conspiring With Environmentalists
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

First it was the Internal Revenue Service supposedly selectively targeting conservative groups for audits, only it didn’t. Then it was Benghazi, and good luck figuring what that was about. Now self-styled congressional watchdog Darrell Issa (R-CA), chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, along with Louisiana Senator David Vitter, the ranking Republican on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, has unearthed a baffling new “scandal” to bludgeon the Obama administration with. It seems that the U.S. Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) communicated extensively with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) while coming up with its new carbon rule to address climate change, announced this past June.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Long After Fracking Stops, The Noise Lives On
NPR
MARIE CUSICK

Most of the noise created by natural gas development is temporary. After drilling and fracking, the workers and equipment are gone. But compressor stations can stay noisy for years — even decades. Copyright © 2014 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required. AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: We're going to explore the noisy side of natural gas development. After the drilling and fracking, the workers and equipment are gone on. But compressor stations which are needed to push the gas through the pipelines can run for years, even decades. Marie Cusick of member station WITF reports. MARIE CUSICK, BYLINE: Compressor station engines hum constantly, pulling and pushing gas out of wells. They're needed every 50 to 100 miles along pipelines to keep gas flowing. There are legitimate issues with how they affect air quality, but noise from the sites can also create problems.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Fracking Ruining California’s Already Depleted Water Supply
Care2
Kevin Mathews

Water is hard to come by in California currently thanks to a devastating drought. As the government tries to determine how to get by, the last thing the state needs is to have its already limited water supply contaminated, yet that’s precisely what has occurred thanks to our friends in the fracking industry.   [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Mora County fracking ban stays, for now
Albuquerque Journal
Mark Oswald

SANTA FE – Mora County still has its first-in-the-country ban on oil and gas drilling, for now. The County Commission voted 2-to-1 Tuesday to maintain the anti-drilling “community rights ordinance” which has attracted national attention – as well as two lawsuits from drilling interests.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
COGA drops lawsuit over Longmont drilling regs Boulder judge says fracking ban may stay in place during appeal
Times-Call
Karen Antonacci

The Colorado Oil and Gas Association on Tuesday said it is dropping its lawsuit against the city of Longmont over oil and gas regulations the city council approved in 2012. Also Tuesday, a Boulder County District Court judge ordered there would be no hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — as the city works its way through the appeals process in a lawsuit over the fracking ban passed by voters in 2012.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
In Wisconsin, Dark Money Got a Mining Company What It Wanted
ProPublica
Theodoric Meyer

When billionaire Chris Cline's company bought an option to mine a swath of northern Wisconsin in 2010, the company touted the project's potential to bring up to 700 well-paid jobs to a hard-pressed part of the state. But the Florida-based company wanted something in return for its estimated $1.5 billion investment — a change to Wisconsin law to speed up the iron mining permit process. So, Cline officials courted state legislators and hired lobbyists. And, unbeknownst to Wisconsin voters and lawmakers, the company waged a more covert campaign, secretly funding a nonprofit advocacy group that battered opponents of the legislation online and on the airwaves. Since the Supreme Court's 2010 Citizens United ruling, which allowed corporations and unions to spend unlimited amounts on politics, hundreds of millions of dollars have flooded into the political system — much of it through nonprofit groups that have no legal obligation to identify their donors.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Public Misperception Complicates Discussion About Fracking Regulations, Panelists Say
Bloombergbna
Andrew Childers

Oct. 10 — Public confusion over the practices involved in hydraulic fracturing has complicated efforts to study and regulate aspects of the process, according to environmental and industry advocates. “Hydraulic fracturing has evolved to mean a lot more things than fracturing open a rock,” Jason Hutt, a partner at Bracewell & Giuliani, said during a panel discussion at the American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy and Resources fall conference in Miami Oct. 10. Bloomberg BNA was a sponsor of the conference. Dan Grossman, regional director of the Environmental Defense Fund's Rocky Mountain Office, said the term has become a “surrogate for oil and gas development writ large,” which can complicate efforts to ensure that fracked wells are developed responsibly.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Methane Manufacturing Gets $1. 2 Billion Boost in Louisiana
Industry Week
Adrienne Selko

Castleton Commodities International LLC (CCI) announced last week it will invest $1.2 billion investment to develop a new methanol manufacturing plant along the Mississippi River in Plaquemines Parish, south of New Orleans. The plant will produce an estimated 5,000 metric tons of methanol per day, using natural gas as the key feedstock for production.   [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
DEP still investigating gas migration two years later
Citizen's Voice
Brendan Gibbons

A state Department of Environmental Protection investigation of methane in a private water supply in Bradford County has lasted almost two years, records show. In late October 2012, the DEP received a complaint about a private water supply in Springfield Township. The complaint sparked an investigation that is still ongoing. In correspondence with the gas company, EOG Resources Inc., the DEP stated the problem has affected at least three water supplies.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Why Pennsylvania's pipeline system could face challenges for growth
Pittsburgh Business Times
Sam Kusic

Pennsylvania has some large-scale challenges when it comes to building its pipeline infrastructure, according to Jeremy Zeman, Pennsylvania and New York commercial development manager for The Williams Cos. Inc. Speaking at the 2014 Penn State Gas Utilization Conference on Tuesday at Southpointe, Zeman saidover the next 15 years, the Northeast will be the winner in terms of natural gas production growth. However, pipe capacity is constrained, and northeastern and southwestern Pennsylvania can be difficult and expensive places to build, in part because of topography.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Mind ‘the gap’: why more gas means more pipelines
State Impact PA
Marie Cusick

Pennsylvania is producing more gas than it knows what to do with. Amid a push to export gas to foreign markets, there’s also a shift away from coal toward gas at electric power plants. Right now the state gets about 20 percent of its electricity from gas, but that’s expected to increase significantly. All these changes are leading to an ongoing expansion of gas-related infrastructure– primarily pipelines  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Michigan Citizens Rise Up and Force a Gas Pipeline to Skirt Their County
Inside Climate News
David Hasemyer

People in Michigan's Oakland County were ready this time. When a Texas-based company announced plans for a natural gas pipeline that would bisect the county, township boards in Oakland County passed resolutions against it. Rallies stirred locals to action. Federal regulators were bombarded with letters against the project. With resistance gaining momentum, ET Rover Pipeline Company LLC, a subsidiary of Houston-based Energy Transfer Partners, quietly reversed its plans. Now people in neighboring Genesee and Lapeer counties—the new path of the pipeline—are reeling, and asking the winners for help.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Report: Pinckney Village Council voices opposition to ET Rover natural gas pipeline
MLive
Ben Freed

Despite acknowledged futility of the action, the Pinckney Village Council voted Monday to approve a resolution opposing a natural gas pipeline. According to a Livingston Daily report, the village’s opposition echoed resolutions from Mundy and Fenton Townships in Genesee County.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Environmental disasters lurk in energy pipelines
Bakken.com
Keith Matheny Detroit Free Press

Michigan’s increasing role in petroleum products transport doesn’t just pose potential risk; it’s already causing problems. An oil pipeline operated by Canadian oil transport giant Enbridge burst near Marshall in July 2010, resulting in the largest inland oil spill in U.S. history. The spill decimated Talmadge Creek, a tributary to the Kalamazoo River, and about 40 miles of the river. It prompted a more than $1-billion cleanup that, more than four years later, is still not complete.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Feds approve gas pipeline in Ky., Tenn.
WMcaction News


CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A federal agency has approved plans for a natural gas pipeline across Todd County, Kentucky, that would mostly serve Clarksville, Tennessee. The (Clarksville) Leaf-Chronicle (http://leafne.ws/1r1klz1) reports that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission recently issued a certificate for the Clarksville Natural Gas Interconnect Pipeline Project. The certificate includes conditions and stipulations that would allow others access to the pipeline.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Parents File Lawsuit Over Pennsylvania Town’s Decision To Allow Fracking Near Public School
Think Progress
Emily Atkin

A group of concerned Pennsylvania parents have launched a legal challenge against their town council’s recent decision to allow five horizontal gas wells about a half mile from the Mars School District, a campus of 3,200 children. The four parents, joined by the environmental groups Delaware Riverkeeper Network and Clean Air Council, contend that the Middlesex Township Board of Supervisors violated Pennsylvania’s state Constitution when it voted to change the township’s zoning laws back in August. Those changes legally opened up Middlesex’s residential and agricultural lands for potential drilling, despite the protests of parents and residents concerned about air pollution, water contamination, and noise.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Maryland Resort Owners Oppose Vertical Drilling, But Drillers Could Access Marcellus Horizontally
Natural Gas Intelligence
Charlie Passut

A property owners' association in a popular western Maryland lake resort area said it opposes surface structures for vertical drilling for Marcellus Shale gas within a local watershed, but it appears amenable to horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing (fracking) that accesses the property from a distance. In a position paper and an accompanying letter to the Garrett County Board of Commissioners, the Deep Creek Lake Property Owners' Association Inc. (POA) said it is against "shale gas recovery operations," on the grounds that drilling would impact the rural character of the area, possibly impact water resources and damage property values. The POA added that it depended on the Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative Advisory Commission (MSSDIAC), which "has been addressing the broad range of risks/adverse impacts potentially associated with deep shale gas recovery if drilling/fracking were to proceed” to come up with an overall regulatory regime. However, there are a number of local considerations which have led to the position that “vertical drilling, and the associated surface infrastructure, should not be a 'permitted by right use' nor permitted at all." The landowners focused on “areas of risk/impact which are of particular concern to POA members and others within the watershed: “Preserving the rural character, scenic beauty, recreational opportunities, and theresulting quality of life in the face of significant ‘industrialization.’ “Sustaining the supportive natural environment, especially water resources and drinking water quality, in the face of significant scientific uncertainty and controversy about the risk mitigation effectiveness…” But POA added that by its calculation, if vertical drilling were prohibited the county would only lose 2.8% of the "projected economic benefits of shale gas recovery," assuming horizontal laterals coming from outside the area were about 8,000 feet in length. That would be offset by the economic benefits derived from severance tax revenues and jobs created. MSSDIAC was launched by Gov. Martin O'Malley in 2011 to help policymakers decide whether to allow shale development and decide how to proceed. In 2012, the 14-member panel recommended that the state impose both a fee and a tax on shale gas development, as well as shift more costs to industry (see Shale Daily, Jan. 12, 2012). The POA cited research by the Garrett County Board of Realtors that asserted property located within 0.9 mile of a wellhead declined in value by 5-22%. "Such declines, noting an indicative average of 13%, would obviously be of concern to property owners," the POA said. "The supporting studies often cite perception of risks to drinking water and/or concerns about 'industrialization' as the cause of decline -- the so-called 'stigma effect.'" Only two counties in Maryland -- Garrett and Allegany, which are in the western ?anhandle -- overlie the Marcellus Shale, which the U.S. Geological Survey estimates could contain as much as 2.383 Tcf of technically recoverable natural gas. Last August, researchers from the University of Maryland said Marcellus Shale development would likely have negative impacts on air quality in the region, while fracking would present a moderately high risk of public health consequences (see Shale Daily, Aug. 19).   [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
DEP continues investigation into Doddridge County drilling accident
Metro News


WEST UNION, W. Va. – The state DEP continues to investigate the impact a drilling accident in Doddridge County had on the drinking water in 16 personal wells. According to DEP Spokesperson Kelly Gillenwater, initial reports based on water samples sent in by Antero resources from 12 properties near the Primm Pad near West Union indicate five out of the 16 wells have possibly been contaminated.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Fracking companies could bury ‘any substance’ under homes
RT


A proposed UK amendment to existing European shale gas regulation would allow fracking firms to put “any substance” under people’s properties and leave it there, prompting anger among environmental groups. The proposed changes to remove the ability of landowners to block fracking will be debated by the House of Lords on Tuesday as part of the Infrastructure Bill, The Guardian reports. The government said the changes were “vital to kick starting” shale gas exploration.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
HAYNESVILLE SHALE: How do you survive a gas boom and bust? For starters, pay in cash
E&E Publishing
Pamela King

MANSFIELD, La. -- Local officials in the Haynesville Shale believe they've unlocked the secret for successful spending of gas boom wealth. The approach? Invest quickly in health, safety and education, and squirrel away the rest for a rainy day. "Just because we have it don't mean we have to spend it," DeSoto Parish Sheriff Rodney Arbuckle likes to say. The Haynesville story is a lesson for community leaders in places like North Dakota and Texas, where fuel extraction continues to drive local growth.   [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
NC groups deliver anti-fracking message to McCrory
WNCN
AP

RALEIGH, N.C. - People unhappy with North Carolina's path toward inland natural gas exploration through permits for fracking want Gov. Pat McCrory to know about their continued opposition. Representatives of several environmental groups say they'll deliver names of more than 50,000 people who don't want drilling to occur to McCrory's Capitol building office Tuesday morning. The groups are part of the "Frack Free NC Alliance." The state Energy and Mining Commission wrapped up last month the public comment period for proposed fracking rules its members have developed over the last couple of years.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
UK to allow fracking companies to use 'any substance' under homes
The Guardian
Damian Carrington

The UK government plans to allow fracking companies to put “any substance” under people’s homes and property and leave it there, as part of the Infrastructure Bill which will be debated by the House of Lords on Tuesday. The legal change makes a “mockery” of ministers’ claims that the UK has the best shale gas regulation in the world, according to green campaigners, who said it is so loosely worded it could also enable the burial of nuclear waste. The government said the changes were “vital to kickstarting shale” gas exploration.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Court OKs Horizontal Drilling for Oil, Gas Under Game Land
The Legal Intelligencer
Max Mitchell

A 1920s land deed reserving oil and gas rights on state game lands by using "ordinary means now in use" will not bar an energy company from accessing those resources by horizontal drilling from an adjacent property, the Commonwealth Court has ruled. The Oct. 6 ruling in Pennsylvania Game Commission v. Seneca Resources did not make a determination on whether the driller will be barred from accessing the resources through hydraulic fracturing on the surface of the land owned by the state Game Commission, and called for a hearing on the specific issue of whether surface access should be limited to methods in use when the deed was written.   [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Suspected frac water dump under investigation in Greene
Observer Reporter
Tara Kinsell

WAYNESBURG – An investigation was launched into the dumping of 3,000 to 4,000 gallons of suspected hydraulic fracturing water into Waynesburg Borough’s sewer system between 8 and 9 a.m. Sept. 30. When personnel at the Waynesburg Sewage Treatment Plant in Meadowlark Park noticed a spike in the flow coming through the system, borough officials were contacted.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Krum, Vantage Energy strike deal for water
Denton RC.com
Christian McPhate

The Krum City Council has agreed to sell Vantage Energy more than 36 million gallons of water for its drilling and hydraulic fracturing operations in the unincorporated parts of western Denton County. The water sale, approved during the council’s Oct. 6 meeting, comes at a time when residents are using less water, according to Mark Patterson, the city’s public works director. It also comes at a time when the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality warned that, according to its calculations, the system is not producing enough water to meet residents’ demand.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Fracking Wastewater Spoils California Drinking, Farm Supplies
Clean Technica
Sandy Dechert

Central California, already painfully stressed by the worst drought in 50 years (which the US Drought Monitor designates as “extreme or exceptional drought,” the most serious category on the agency’s five-level scale), has another problem with its water supply. Aquifers that supply drinking and irrigation water have recently had to swallow almost 3 billion gallons of tainted wastewater from nearby hydraulic fracturing.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Other voices: Political agendas should not trump science in studying fracking, quakes
News Journal
Houston Chronicle

Dishes rattle; walls crack. In earthquake-prone Japan people know what is happening. In Texas, these tremors are something new, and people are trying to understand their relationship to hydraulic fracturing, commonly called “fracking.” Fracking requires vast quantities of wastewater to be injected underground. Residents, scientists, oil and gas executives and environmentalists across the state are entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts. Thankfully, Texas — a global leader in oil and gas know-how — is looking into the facts. The Texas Railroad Commission has requested industry data on the frequency and intensity of wastewater injections into disposal wells. It has also hired a seismologist to interpret the data. That scientist, David Craig Pearson, appears to be well-qualified and free of any preconceived agenda. Pearson has vowed to determine the cause of the earthquakes, “be they natural or man-made.”  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Illinois legislative committee puts off voting on fracturing rules until November
Daily Journal via AP


CHICAGO — An Illinois legislative panel has put off voting on rules for high-volume oil and gas extraction until next month, as it grapples with how to ensure regulations are fair to industry while protecting the environment. The Joint Committee on Administrative Rules has the last word on whether the rules for hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," can take effect.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Borough investigates frack water dumped into sewer Read more at
Philly.com via AP


WAYNESBURG, Pa. (AP) - A southwestern Pennsylvania borough is trying to figure out who dumped 3,000 to 4,000 of hydraulic fracturing water into its sewer system. Waynesburg officials tell the (Washington) Observer-Reporter (http://bit.ly/1sC9xg0 ) the water was dumped between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. on Sept. 30. Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is a process in which chemically-laced water is injected into underground shale formations to break them up and free natural gas for drillers. The water can include briny, or salty, substances, and traces of chemicals used in the process.   [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Branstad won't stop Bakken oil pipeline through Iowa
Des Moines Register
William Petroski

Gov. Terry Branstad is rejecting pleas from a coalition of Iowa community and environmental activists who asked have him to block plans for a North Dakota crude oil pipeline that would cut diagonally through 18 Iowa counties. The activists gave Branstad's aides petitions Tuesday with 2,300 signatures that request the Republican governor to sign a state executive order to stop the proposed Bakken oil pipeline, officially known as the "Dakota Access" pipeline.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
No fracking without court order: DNR boss
Chicago Tribune
Julie Wernau

he director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources testified Tuesday that if state legislators do not act to set rules governing horizontal hydraulic fracturing the agency will not issue fracking permits “absent a court order to the contrary.” The rules were on the agenda Tuesday of the 12-member Joint Committee on Administrative Rules, but the committee defered action until Nov. 6. The committee has until Nov. 15 to adopt the rules or the process of formulating fracking regulations would start over again.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Hawkins: fracking industry is "winging it"
WRVO
Ryan Delaney

Green Party gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins says the natural gas industry’s short-sighted attitude is not what New York needs. Hawkins recently visited a northern Pennsylvania region that’s experienced an energy rush using the drilling method known as fracking. Part of New York state sits on the same shale formation, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been hesitant to open the state up to extraction, over pressure from environmental advocates.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
O'Brien drafting bill to ban Pennsylvania shale drill cuttings
Legislative Gazette
Jessica Piccinini

Sen. Ted O'Brien, D-Irondequoit, is drafting a new bill that would ban the disposal of hydrofracking drill cuttings from Pennsylvania in New York landfills. The announcement was made during a meeting with members of the New York League of Conservation Voters at Durand Eastman Beach in Rochester, as the group announced their endorsement for the first-term senator.  [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
Germans Line Up Against Fracking, Spurred by Fears of a U.S.-Style Boom
Inside Climate News
Catherine Stupp

German activist protests in favor of the Energiewende, renewable energy transition, and against natural gas fracking. Reports of water and air contamination from fracking in the United States and concerns about climate change are driving German opposition to the natural gas drilling method. A recent government proposal would ban fracking for shale gas, but allow fracking for tight gas. Credit: Michaela, flicker, March 2014 48Share2 BERLIN—In Germany debate is raging over whether to allow fracking, and America's example is serving as the cautionary tale for both supporters and critics. Germany's biggest energy companies and some politicians are using the U.S. drilling boom to argue the country would benefit from tapping shale gas buried under two of its 16 states. Supporters say Germany must greenlight fracking—especially as calls intensify to end dependency on Russia, which supplies a third of Germany's oil and gas.   [Full Story]

Oct 14, 2014
NASA: Methane hot spot in U.S. is triple the size of previous estimates
Daily Kos
Jen Hayden

One small “hot spot” in the U.S. Southwest is responsible for producing the largest concentration of the greenhouse gas methane seen over the United States – more than triple the standard ground-based estimate -- according to a new study of satellite data by scientists at NASA and the University of Michigan.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Alama Hasse Update
580 KIDO
Kevin Millar

This is not a movie or a work of fiction. Perhaps one day John Grisham will write a story of the case of Alma the Anti-fracker. Alma Hasse is still being held in jail in Payette County. Her crime? Speaking out during a public meeting. She continues her hunger strike. Alma has gained two powerful allies in her quest for freedom, John Bujak and the ACLU of Idaho. Mr. Bujak heard of Alma’s detainment while listening to my show this morning of 580 KIDO. The ACLU is updating everyone on her condition through several twitter feeds. Expect a full court media press Tuesday Morning from the ACLU of Idaho   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Billions of gallons of fracking fluid dumped into California drinking water
EagleFord Texas.com
Zachary Toliver

Last week, the California State Water Resources Board sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) confirming that roughly 3 billion gallons of hydraulic fracturing wastewater was illegally dumped into central California aquifers. Last July, the state of California closed 11 wastewater injection wells in fear that the fracking wastewater was contaminating surrounding aquifers. The EPA demanded a report within 60 days of the closures.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Poll shows more New Yorkers oppose fracking
EagleFordTexas.com
Sach Koppang

As New York State’s moratorium on fracking comes closer to its expiration date, residents’ opposition to the hydraulic fracturing process continues to grow, reports the Epoch Times. A poll organized by the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a non-profit environmental advocacy group, has shown that 56 percent of New York citizens oppose fracking. The survey was conducted by third-party researchers in September and documented the opinions of 802 New Yorkers. A similar survey conducted in August by Quinnipiac University found 48 percent of voters polled were opposed to fracking.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Dropping oil prices could threaten U.S. fracking boom
Mcclatchy DC
Sean Cockerham

WASHINGTON — Oil prices continued to collapse Monday and are getting closer to levels that could dampen the U.S. energy boom. West Texas Intermediate crude, the U.S. benchmark, traded below $85 a barrel on Monday and has plummeted by more than 20 percent from this summer. Raymond James energy analyst Pavel Molchanov said he thinks a drop into the $70 to $80 range could start triggering meaningful cutbacks in investment in U.S. production. -  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Fracking drives growth in sand mining, raises new health-risk questions
McClatchy News
Sean Cockerham

WASHINGTON — Demand is exploding for the massive amounts of sand used in fracking, creating a windfall for mines from Texas to Wisconsin but leading to worries about the health impacts of breathing silica dust. Drillers are expected to use nearly 95 billion pounds of “frac sand” this year. That’s up 30 percent from last year, according to energy specialists at PacWest Consulting Partners, who expect the market to keep growing as drillers increasingly accept that using more sand increases the oil and gas production from each well.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
POA opposes vertical drilling for Marcellus shale
Bakken.com


DEEP CREEK LAKE — The Garrett County Property Owners’ Association has voted to oppose vertical drilling for Marcellus shale gas within the boundaries of the Deep Creek Watershed as defined by the map included in the Deep Creek Watershed Zoning Ordinance. In a position letter, the POA encourages the Garrett County Commissioners to amend the ordinance to prohibit vertical drilling and associated surface infrastructure within the watershed.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Pipeline company announces plan to fund environmental projects in Lancaster County; opponents critical
Lancaster Online
Ad Crable

Saying it wants to exceed expectations, the company seeking to build a natural gas pipeline in Lancaster County has announced it will fund worthwhile environmental projects here. Williams Partners has launched an Atlantic Sunrise Environmental Stewardship Program to help out an unspecified number of “wish list” projects here and seven other counties along the proposed 193-mile gas pipeline.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Farm Bureau cautions landowners to be wary of pipeline deals
Canton Rep
Jon Baker

NEW PHILADELPHIA Land-owners should ask themselves numerous questions before signing an easement to allow an oil or natural-gas pipeline to be built across their property, a representative of the Ohio Farm Bureau said Monday. Among those questions are these: What is the type and purpose of the pipeline? What is its diameter? And what is its distance? Above all, Dale Arnold encouraged landowners to consult with an attorney first. Residents should not sign anything without legal review or seeing a map showing where a proposed pipeline will go.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
CNPC's Gas Pipeline Approval Gets Russia New Export Market - Analyst Blog
NASDAQ
zacks.com

Russia has found a new export market in the world's largest energy consumer, China. The nations had signed a natural gas supply deal in May and the recent approval by the government to PetroChina Co Ltd. 's ( PTR ) parent company, China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC), to move ahead with the designing and construction of Chinese end of the China-Russia natural gas pipeline has given momentum to the deal. CNPC will be designing the Chinese end of the massive 4,000 kilometers pipeline that is anticipated to transport gas worth $400 billion. The Chinese section of the pipeline will start from northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, span across several intermediate provinces and finally end at Shanghai. The pipeline construction is likely to commence in the first half of 2015 and expected to complete in 2018.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Anti Pipeline group plans to submit petition to McAuliffe
Daily Progress
Bob Stuart

WAYNESBORO — The Augusta County Alliance plans to take its efforts to stop the Atlantic Coast Pipeline directly to Gov. Terry McAuliffe. The alliance is a grassroots group that opposes the natural gas pipeline proposed by Richmond-based Dominion Resources and its partners. The alliance has begun a petition drive with the help of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, an organization that fights climate change and seeks to mitigate global warming, said Emily Heffling, Virginia lead organizer for the climate action network.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Senate panel to consider Pinelands Commission nominations
Burlington County Times
David Levinsky

TRENTON — New Jersey senators are moving forward to consider Gov. Chris Christie’s two nominees to the state Pinelands Commission. New Hanover Mayor Dennis Roohr and Ocean City resident Robert Barr are scheduled to be interviewed by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday afternoon. Following the interview, the panel could vote to release their nominations for the full Senate to consider. The nominations have drawn the ire of environmental groups because Roohr and Barr would replace two commissioners who voted earlier this year against permitting construction of a natural gas pipeline through a protected area of the Pinelands.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Major Investor Coalition Pushes EPA To Adopt ‘Robust` Methane Regulations
Bloomberg BNA


A coalition of investors with more than $300 billion in assets asked the Environmental Protection Agency in an Oct. 9 letter to develop “robust” methane emissions regulations for the oil and gas industry. National standards will build investor confidence that natural gas is appropriately regulated and will prevent methane emissions that contribute to climate change, the letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said. Voluntary methane emissions reduction measures are helpful but insufficient due to the diverse nature of the oil and gas sector, the investors said.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
State Shale Industry Faces Pressure to Clean Up Methane Emissions
WOSU


The Environmental Defense Fund says the state’s growing shale industry is a major source of methane emissions. It estimates 6,000 tons of the natural gas entered the atmosphere in 2013 from Ohio drill sites. Methane, like carbon dioxide, traps heat in the atmosphere. Environmental Defense Fund spokesman Andrew Miller says Ohio could benefit economically from tighter regulations on methane emissions at shale drilling sites.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Like New Yorkers, Californians Can Say No to Fracking
NO FRACKING WAY
Helen Slottje and Andy Hsia-Coron

Great movements — from women’s suffrage to civil rights — begin with a small group of people standing up and saying no to injustice. Such a movement is currently emerging around our most basic human rights: access to clean air, clean water, and a stable climate. This new movement aims to halt aggressive oil and gas extraction techniques like fracking, which destroy water, pollute air, and leak climate-killing methane into the atmosphere. It’s a grassroots effort that is spreading on both coasts of our great nation, and its momentum is growing as communities learn from the success of their neighbors and far-flung allies.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Opposition mounts to Pilgrim oil pipeline
Times Herald Record
James Walsh

A proposed pipeline to service Bakken crude oil shipments rolling by train into the Port of Albany faces growing opposition in the Hudson Valley and New Jersey, which would provide the oil with a route to refineries. Pilgrim Pipeline Holdings LLC plans a route of nearly 180 miles between Albany and Linden, N.J. It plans on installing two pipes, one carrying crude for refining and the other returning upstate with gasoline, diesel, heating oil and aviation fuel. Company spokesman Paul Nathanson said last week that no route had been selected, but that Pilgrim preferred running the pipeline along the New York State Thruway. “The focus is on that,” Nathanson said. Utilities and pipelines cross the Thruway, but none runs along it. Thruway officials have met with Pilgrim representatives, but no decision has been made on a route. “Any decision to proceed with a project requires a thorough analysis by the Thruway Authority, compliance with all applicable laws and regulations and approval by the (Thruway) board of directors,” Thruway Executive Director Tom Madison said in a statement. Environmentalists point to a July 26, 2010, rupture of an oil pipeline in Michigan run by Enbridge, a Canadian company. The break released nearly 845,000 gallons, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, polluting about 35 miles of the Kalamazoo River. Pilgrim has been surveying properties, some far afield from the Thruway, for what it calls archeological and environmental issues. It intends to file its plans by the end of the year with the state Department of Environmental Conservation, which could have jurisdiction under the federal Clean Water Act. The company recently sought permission to survey property off Route 17K in the Town of Newburgh, and in the spring asked to survey a site in Plattekill and the Town of Newburgh, several miles from the Thruway. Nora Gallardo, who owns the Plattekill/Newburgh property, said she turned down survey requests in May. She said she was told by the would-be surveyors that Pilgrim wanted to install the pipeline under electrical power lines that cross the property. Gallardo is worried about pollution and reduced property value.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Traffic Deaths Climb Amid Fracking Boom
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

While there’s been anecdotal evidence before, a new in-depth study undertaken jointly by the Houston Chronicle and Houston Public Media News 88.7 draws a strong circumstantial link between the fracking boom in Texas and the greatly increased number of highway deaths in the state. It’s based on an analysis of statistics as well as numerous interviews with people involved with trucking and traffic safety.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Bill would eliminate buffer requirement for Pennsylvania’s cleanest streams
NPR State Impact PA
KATIE COLANERI

Yet another battle of the economy versus the environment is taking place in Harrisburg. This time, conservationists say Pennsylvania’s cleanest streams are at stake. A bill (HB1565) working its way through the state legislature would eliminate a requirement for 150-foot buffer zones between new developments and specially protected watersheds. Thick rows of trees and shrubs help keep pollution from washing off buildings and pavement into waterways. However, developers say waterfront property is valuable and 150 feet can be too much to ask for certain projects.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Saudis prepared for $80 oil in bid to retain market share: sources
Globe and Mail
Ron Bousso & Joshua Schneyer

Saudi Arabia is quietly telling the oil market it would be comfortable with much lower oil prices for an extended period, a sharp shift in policy that may be aimed at slowing the expansion of rival producers including those in the U.S. shale patch.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
'Fracking' for natural gas is damaging the planet and endangering residents' health and should be stopped The available data and the increased frequency of extreme weather prove that our dependence on fossil fuels is detrimental to the environment and continues to pose dangers to human health
Daily News
Editorial--Donovan Richards

As a society, we are at a pivotal moment we can choose to work to reduce our consumption of carbon-based energy and prevent further damage or simply ignore the wealth of evidence that compels us to do otherwise. Recently, I introduced Resolution 356, a historic piece of legislation recognizing climate change and the dangers it will continue to pose to human health. Mahatma Gandhi said, “Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed.” I will continue to stand in solidarity with the broad coalition of labor, activists, community leaders, legislators and ordinary citizens to build and sustain this movement, stop fracking and to preserve the earth for this and subsequent generations.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Global Frackdown Unites Thousands Calling for Worldwide Ban on Fracking
EcoWatch
Stefanie Spear

Thousands of people participated in Saturday’s Global Frackdown calling for a worldwide ban on fracking. With more than 250 events in more than a dozen countries, anti-fracking activists united with the message: no to fossil fuels, yes to clean, renewable energy.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Oil Tankers Leaking into Seattle’s Water
The Daily Beast


A highly flammable byproduct flowed from oil tankers into an area stormwater system for at least a year before state regulators inspected the problem. Seventy miles north of Seattle, the Tesoro Anacortes rail facility—which daily offloads some 50,000 barrels of Bakken crude from tanker cars—was releasing a highly flammable oil byproduct into a stormwater system that lacked “required controls” for at least a year before state regulators were made aware of the potential hazard.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Michigan Truth Squad: Gov. Snyder gets a warning and fracking foul in town hall event
MLive
Center for Michigan

Fracking “In Michigan, we do fracking right...10,000 wells and we never had a problem.” Some environmentals and anglers might dispute that. The call: Regular Foul   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
On the Bright Side: Food, fun and fracking highlighted at Taste of the Catskills
Daily Star
Cheryl Petersen

Advocating for the region, vendor Catskill Mountainkeeper presented a lineup of footage showing the detriments of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, but at the same time acknowledged that the issue boils down to changing the American culture, heady with non-renewable energy consumption. On Saturday, Catskill Mountainkeeper Executive Director Ramsey Adams presented Natalie Merchant and Jon Bowermaster, of Ulster County, with the honor of “Keeper of the Catskills Award.”  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Fracking drives growth in sand mining, raises new health-risk questions
Ft Worth Star-Telegram
Sean Cockerham

WASHINGTON — Demand is exploding for the massive amounts of sand used in fracking, creating a windfall for mines from Texas to Wisconsin but leading to worries about the health impacts of breathing silica dust. Drillers are expected to use nearly 95 billion pounds of “frac sand” this year. That’s up 30 percent from last year, according to energy specialists at PacWest Consulting Partners, who expect the market to keep growing as drillers increasingly accept that using more sand increases the oil and gas production from each well.... “The rapidly expanding growth of frac sand mining is a hidden and little understood danger of the fracking boom in the United States,” Grant Smith, an author of the report, told reporters in a conference call. Many local governments in Wisconsin have passed zoning laws keeping new mines out, which is concentrating the mining growth in two counties, PacWest Consulting’s Samir Nangia said in a call last week. Minnesota can also be tough for permits, he said.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Video: Idaho Anti-Fracking Activist Jailed in Payette County
Boise Weekly
George Prentice

Alma Hasse, who has been a vocal and engaged opponent of gas and oil exploration in and around her Payette County home, is behind bars at the Payette County Jail, after being arrested Oct. 9 during a public hearing. The incident occurred at the Payette County County Courthouse, where the county's Planning and Zoning Commission was considering a proposed expansion of a gas treatment facility by Alta Mesa, one of the leading players in burgeoning gas exploration operations in Southwest Idaho.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
The fight to end fracking
Eagle Ford Texas
Samantha Malott

Once people know the truth, they are bound to step up and stop fracking. At least that’s the hope of Pat Rathmann, a member of the Palouse Environmental Sustainability Coalition, which is making an effort to bring awareness to the practice.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Group Urges Md. To Ban Fracking Near Savage River
WBAL
Associated Press

A national conservation group is urging the state of Maryland to prohibit hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in the Savage River watershed. The group, Trout Unlimited, added the watershed to its list of 10 places in eight Eastern states that it says are threatened by fracking. The Savage River watershed comprises about 18 percent of Garrett County.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Happy Mondays' Bez backs anti-fracking protest near Walkington
Hull Daily Mail


A DANCER and percussionist from the band Happy Mondays has praised anti-fracking protesters who have been camped near Walkington for several month. Celebrity Big Brother winner Bez has become a vociferous campaigner against fracking with his newly formed political group The Reality Party.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Does Fracking Threaten Future of Ohio Organic Farms?
Public News Service


COLUMBUS, Ohio - Certified organic farming is a growing business in Ohio, but some farmers warn that the threat of contamination from hydraulic fracturing could dampen its future. Some of the chemicals used in fracking have been identified as naturally-occurring toxic substances, metals, and radioactive materials.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
9 Good Reasons to Ban Fracking Immediately
OpEd News
Opinion/Editorial

The natural gas extraction method known as hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, has simultaneously become a cash cow for unimaginably wealthy energy companies, a brutally efficient destroyer of limited natural resources depended upon by the rest of us, and a disturbing new trend that will lead to massive social instability. Until we come together and put a stop to fracking by direct action, banning fracking in our cities and states and using clean energy, fracking will continue to deplete every everything we have until it's too late.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
The Global War for Oil Supremacy Has Just Begun
The Desert Sun
Morris Beschloss

While the usually energy-wise pundits blame the current oil price air pocket on global oversupply in the face of recession-tainted global demand, intensified by a “muscular” dollar, the current 20% price slump within less than two weeks by both U.S. domestic West Texas Intermediate (WTI) and international Brent crude actually represents Saudi Arabia’s opening shot at America’s amazing “fracking” growth of millions of barrels of oil per day, with much more to come. They’re hoping to bring the price down low enough to make “fracking” cost-ineffective.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Drs. Roizen and Oz: It's helpful to learn stressors in helping mentally ill relatives Q: I keep hearing that hydraulic fracturing (or fracking) is polluting our air and ground water and causing serious health problems. Is that true? — Richard F., Dayton, Ohio
News-Sentinel
Michael Roizen & Mehmet Oz

A: We wonder how eager the leaders of the natural gas industry would be to drink well water from a farm next to one of their drilling sites. It's a fact that hydraulic fracturing pumps a lot of toxic chemicals (we know of about 24 off hand) deep underground at high enough pressure to fracture shale and release trapped gas and oil. And in Pennsylvania, there are multiple reports of air and water contamination, possibly from hydraulic fracturing sites, causing folks breathing problems, rashes, headaches, nosebleeds, numbness, nausea and vomiting. That's why we suggest that everyone would be best served by the policy adopted in New York state: No fracking until results of a state department of health study become available. Better safe than irreversibly sorry.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Party lines and pipelines: Candidates talk energy
Miami Herald
Holly Ramer

CONCORD, N.H. There are pipelines and there are party lines, and what New Hampshire candidates say about the former appears largely influenced by the latter.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Senate Puts Anti-Stream Buffer Bill In Position For A Final Vote, Not Over Yet
PA Environment Digest


The Senate Wednesday put House Bill 1565 (Hahn-R-Northampton), that environmental groups say weakens DEP requirements for stream buffers in Special Protection Watersheds, in position for a final vote next week, the final two days of session.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
CBF-PA Urges Senators To Oppose Anti-Stream Buffer Bill Ahead Of Final Vote
PA Environment Digest


Harry Campbell, Pennsylvania Director of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, sent a letter to all members of the Senate Wednesday urging them to oppose House Bill 1565 (Hahn-R-Northampton) they say weakens DEP requirements for stream buffers in Special Protection Watersheds. The bill is in position for a final vote during the final two days of voting session next week.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
DEP Seeks $4.5 Million Penalty From EQT For Drilling-Related Pollution In Tioga County
PA Environment Digest


The Department of Environmental Protection Tuesday announced it has filed a complaint with the Environmental Hearing Board requesting a $4.5 million civil penalty from EQT Production Company of Washington, Pa., for a major pollution incident in 2012 at the company’s Phoenix Pad S location in Duncan Township, Tioga County.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
StateImpact, Post-Gazette: State Court Hears Arguments On State Forest Drilling
PA Environment Digest


StateImpact and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Wednesday reported Commonwealth Court heard arguments in the case of PEDF v. Commonwealth challenging withdrawals from the DCNR Oil and Gas Fund to balance the state budget using revenues from State Forest Marcellus Shale drilling leases.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Mansfield Creates Environment Institute On Shale, Other Issues, Speaker Series Starts
PA Environment Digest


Mansfield University President Fran Hendricks Wednesday announced the creation of The Institute of Science and the Environment at Mansfield University, Tioga County. The new Institute will replace the Marcellus Institute, which was established in 2012, continuing its work with responsible industry representatives while broadening its focus to all aspects of land use and natural resources. The Institute of Science and the Environment at Mansfield University will be part of the Department of Geosciences.  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Washington County drilling hearing raises conflicts over contamination Evidence said to be lacking for tainted water on property
Pittsbrugh Post-Gazette
Don Hopey

Loren “Buzz” Kiskadden first noticed a water problem at his house trailer in rural Amwell Township, Washington County, while using a hose to fill a wading pool for his grandchildren in June 2011. “A gray sludge was filing up the bottom of the pool. It was just nasty,” said Mr. Kiskadden, 55, in testimony before the state Environmental Hearing Board last week in Pittsburgh. “I shut the water off and told the kids not to get in it.”  [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Does Fracking Threaten Future of Ohio Organic Farms?
Public News Service
Mary Kuhlman

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Certified organic farming is a growing business in Ohio, but some farmers warn that the threat of contamination from hydraulic fracturing could dampen its future. Some of the chemicals used in fracking have been identified as naturally-occurring toxic substances, metals, and radioactive materials. In eastern Ohio, Mick Luber is a certified organic grower and owner of Bluebird Farm in Cadiz. He says several well pads and a compressor station are located near his land. He is worried about contamination of soil, water, and air, and what it could mean for his organic certification.   [Full Story]

Oct 13, 2014
Suspected frac water dump under investigation in Greene
Observer-Reporter
Tara Kinsell

WAYNESBURG – An investigation was launched into the dumping of 3,000 to 4,000 gallons of suspected hydraulic fracturing water into Waynesburg Borough’s sewer system between 8 and 9 a.m. Sept. 30. When personnel at the Waynesburg Sewage Treatment Plant in Meadowlark Park noticed a spike in the flow coming through the system, borough officials were contacted.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
What My Time in America's New Oil Boomtown Taught Me About Our Climate Madness
AlterNet
Laura Gottesdiener

At 9 p.m. on that August night, when I arrived for my first shift as a cocktail waitress at Whispers, one of the two strip clubs in downtown Williston, I didn’t expect a 25-year-old man to get beaten to death outside the joint. Then again, I didn’t really expect most of the things I encountered reporting on the oil boom in western North Dakota this past summer. “Can you cover the floor?” the other waitress yelled around 11 p.m. as she and her crop-top sweater sidled behind the bar to take over for the bouncers and bartenders. They had rushed outside to deal with a commotion. I resolved to shuttle Miller Lites and Fireball shots with extra vigor. I didn’t know who was fighting, but assumed it involved my least favorite customers of the night: two young brothers who had been jumping up and down in front of the stage, their hands cupping their crotches the way white boys, whose role models are Eminem, often do when they drink too much. One sported a buzz cut, the other had hair like soft lamb’s wool.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Alma Hasse, Idaho Fractivist, Arrested in Public Meeting
Epoch Times
Jerry elson

Residents Against Gas Extraction was arrested Thursday during an open meeting about potential expansion of Alta Mesa’s, a Texas-based gas company, lease for land to build a gas treatment unit.   [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Southern Miss College of Business Receives Grant to Study Impact of Fracking on Transportation
WDAM
Whitney Argenbright

The Department of Economic Development and Tourism within the College of Business at The University of Southern Mississippi has received a federal grant to study the impact of the increased use of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) on freight transportation distribution patterns.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Gov. Cuomo’s tough casino, fracking decisions delayed until after Election Day
Daily Freeman
David Klepper

ALBANY >> A hotly anticipated decision on fracking won’t come before New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo stands for re-election. Same for an announcement of higher tolls on the new Tappan Zee Bridge. Thanks to either serendipity or Cuomo’s dexterity, each decision is off the table, pushed back until after the election.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Geology of fracking remains unclear in the Valley
Vindy.com
Brandon Klein

There’s not enough geological data to say definitively that Mahoning and Trumbull counties are susceptible to earthquakes, a seismologist said. There are about 25 shale wells in Mahoning and Trumbull counties along with 19 active injection wells. Earthquakes have been attributed to two injection wells and one hydraulic- fracturing site.   [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
In Texas, Traffic Deaths Climb Amid Fracking Boom
NPR
ANDREW SCHNEIDER

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has unlocked huge reserves of oil and gas in shale formations in many states. The biggest winner, in terms of new jobs, has been Texas. But an investigation by Houston Public Media and the Houston Chronicle shows Texas highways have become the nation's deadliest amid a fracking boom. Flatbed trucks bearing loads of steel pipe often barrel down these roads. Truck drivers often run into problems when they have to make wide turns onto narrow side streets. Vilma Marenco was hit by one of those trucks on April 22. She was driving home when she stopped at an intersection along Old Beaumont Highway, linking East Houston to refineries on the Texas Gulf Coast. She entered the intersection, less than a mile from her house, when an 18-wheeler ran the red light on Old Beaumont, crushing her Chevy Cavalier. Marenco's husband, Guillermo Gomez, tried desperately to reach her by phone.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Fracktivist residents see red, not black gold
Orange County Register
Aaron Orlowski

In greater numbers by the month, residents across north Orange County are calling for an end to fracking, joining a growing chorus of Californians demanding a stop to the controversial oil drilling practice. “Once one city bans or finds a moratorium, it will continue on to the next,” said Susan Fujioka, a Brea resident who is spearheading an anti-fracking campaign.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
GreenSpace: Firm's drill-bit stunt stirs up all-out pink stink
Philadelphia Inquirer
Sandy Bauers

Just when you were sure the world couldn't possibly get any pinker during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, here's the latest: a Texas company that is a leading provider of gas and oil-field services is painting 1,000 of its drill bits that signature shade of pink and sending them worldwide. The bits - bigger than a gallon paint bucket - will arrive in pink boxes with informational pamphlets. The company, Baker Hughes Inc., also will give the Susan G. Komen breast cancer foundation a $100,000 check at the NFL's final "pink-out" game Oct. 26 in Pittsburgh. Jeanne Rizzo, president of the nonprofit Breast Cancer Fund, is all but reaching for the pink Pepto Bismol.   [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Mountain Valley Pipeline project creates controversy
Go Dan river
John R. Crane

The director of the Virginia Sierra Club said the proposed natural-gas Mountain Valley Pipeline — which will end in Chatham — will bring more fracking to the region and harm the environment.   [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
More New Yorkers Oppose Fracking: Poll
Epoch times
Jonathan Zhou

New Yorkers’ opposition to the natural gas extraction method known as fracking has continued to rise in recent weeks, as the expiration of the state’s fracking moratorium looms closer. A new poll conducted by the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), an environmental activist group, shows 56 percent of New Yorkers oppose fracking in the state. The survey of 802 New Yorkers was conducted by a third-party research firm in late September.   [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
NASA finds methane hot spot over Four Corners The culprit is the extensive fossil fuel industry infrastructure, not just fracking or coal mines.
High Country News
Jonathan Thompson

Several years ago, scientists with NASA and the University of Michigan, looking at images made by a satellite spectrometer, noticed a glaring orange and red orb over the Four Corners region, near where Colorado, Utah, New Mexico and Arizona meet. The colors indicated methane, a greenhouse gas far more potent than carbon dioxide, and the concentration there was so much more intense than in other areas that the researchers thought their instruments must be on the fritz.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Shelby Twp. drilling operation hits close to home
Detroit Free Press
Keith Matheny

How oil and gas drilling can impact nearby residents came joltingly into focus last July, when a 109-foot well went in Macomb County's Shelby Township less than 500 feet from homes. "They drilled for three weeks, 24-7," said Gail Hammill, a resident of neighboring Rochester Hills and a member of the grassroots Don't Drill the Hills group, opposing drilling on city property planned in Rochester Hills.  [Full Story]

Oct 12, 2014
Dilemma in the Marcellus Shale: How to dispose of radioactive oil and gas waste?
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Anya Litvak

A few months ago, a Marcellus Shale operator approached Leong Ying, business development manager at the radiation measurement division of Thermo Fisher Scientific, with a problem. The driller, whom Mr. Ying declined to name, was trying to dispose of oil and gas waste at area landfills but the trucks kept tripping radiation alarms. Rejected trucks had to be sent back to well pads or taken out of state, both costly options. It was happening enough that it started nudging the company’s bottom line, Mr. Ying said. “Once you hit them in the pocket, then they stand up and take notice,” he said.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
When it comes to fracking, fracktivist residents see red, not black gold
Orange County Register
AARON ORLOWSKI

In greater numbers by the month, residents across north Orange County are calling for an end to fracking, joining a growing chorus of Californians demanding a stop to the controversial oil drilling practice. “Once one city bans or finds a moratorium, it will continue on to the next,” said Susan Fujioka, a Brea resident who is spearheading an anti-fracking campaign. Fujioka’s neighbors gather information and attend city council meetings. Brea residents picket. And a recent meeting at Cal State Fullerton was standing room only.   [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Ted Turner among opponents of Sabal Trail
The Moultrie Observer
Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) — A proposal to build a $3.7 billion pipeline system carrying natural gas into Florida is raising complaints from Georgia residents — including media mogul Ted Turner — who say they'd face environmental costs while others get the benefits. Spectra Energy Partners LP and NextEra Energy Inc. are seeking federal permission to build the Sabal Trail and the Florida Southeast Connection, about 600 miles of pipeline bringing natural gas from a hub in Alabama, across southwest Georgia and to power plants in Florida. If approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the system would start operating in mid-2017.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Where Wolf and Corbett stand on the issues
Miami Herald
Associated Press

Both Corbett and Wolf oppose a broad moratorium on natural gas drilling and oppose the leasing of more state parks and state forest for drilling. As governor, Corbett authorized leasing of gas rights beneath state park and forest land, with the condition that drilling occur on adjacent, privately owned lands or from areas already leased for drilling in the state forests. Corbett opposes a moratorium on drilling in the Delaware River Basin, while Wolf supports it. Corbett signed legislation to reduce local governments' zoning authority over drilling activity (it was struck down by Pennsylvania courts). Wolf opposes reducing local authority.   [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Landowners state their case on fracking
Fredericksburg.com
Cathy Dyson

In all the discussions about hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, the voices of residents who have leased land for gas drilling are about the only ones who have not been heard publicly.   [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
'Global Frackdown' Aims to Slay Myths and Force End to Fracking Bonanza
Common Dreams
Jon Queally

Anti-fracking activists all over the world turned up their megaphones and took to the streets of their communities on Saturday to partipate in the "Global Frackdown" as they demanded an end to the destructive practice of hydraulic-fracture drilling that the oil and gas industries are aggressively trying to expand in regions across the planet. “Across the globe a powerful movement is emerging that rejects policies incentivizing fracked natural gas as a bridge fuel to as sustainable future. Any initiative claiming to promote sustainable energy for all must stimulate energy efficiency and renewable energy programs, not foster fracking for oil and gas,” said Wenonah Hauter, the executive director of U.S.-based Food & Water Watch, which spear-headed the day of action.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Protest over fracking, offshore gas terminal in Long Beach
Newsday
Joan Gralla

Opponents of fracking and a planned natural gas terminal 19 miles offshore rallied in Long Beach Saturday, calling the proposals threats to public safety and the environment. Karen Miller of Woodbury, one of about 200 protesters who gathered on the boardwalk, said she doesn't want her generation to fail the next by increasing use of fossil fuel. "We want our Earth to be as beautiful for them as it for us," she said. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has postponed his decision on whether fracking -- using a drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing to extract natural gas -- should be approved, saying more health and environment studies should be done. Protest leaders, joined by a dozen surfers who braved the waves to show their support, rejected assertions that the proposed port would only handle imports of gas, not exports.   [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Chevron CEO favors exporting natural gas
San Jose Mercury News
Adam Belz

John Watson, CEO of one of the world's largest energy companies, recently spoke in Minneapolis about rising U.S. oil and gas production, the need for new pipelines and the case for allowing U.S. crude oil exports. Chevron's top executive also took questions from the audience after his speech to the Economic Club of Minnesota, and from reporters in a separate session. Here are some of the questions and answers: Q A question on infrastructure. What do we need to do to continue to build out to where we should be?  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Police watchdog to reinvestigate Barton Moss anti-fracking arrest after GMP clears officers of wrongdoing
Manchester Evening News
Dan Thompson

The police watchdog is to re-investigate the arrest of a man in the Barton Moss anti-fracking protests – after an internal GMP investigation cleared officers of wrongdoing. Steven Peers lodged a complaint against Greater Manchester Police in February, claiming video footage showed an officer lying to detain him on ‘trumped up’ charges. He was filming the protest in Eccles, Salford, when he was arrested for refusing a breath test after a policeman accused him of driving to the site drunk.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Low-Carbon Energy World ‘Feasible’ by 2050
EcoWatch
Tim Radford

A global low-carbon energy economy is not only feasible, it could double electricity supply by 2050 while actually reducing air and water pollution, according to new research. Even though photovoltaic power requires up to 40 times more copper than conventional power plants, and wind power uses up to 14 times more iron, the world wins on a switch to low-carbon energy. These positive findings are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Edgar Hertwich and Thomas Gibon, of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology Department of Energy and Process Engineering.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Pink Drill Bits Bring Complaints of Komen Tie to Fracking
NBC NEWS
Bill Briggs

The Susan G. Komen Foundation has, once more, riled some of its base — breast-cancer activists, survivors and their families — this time by accepting $100,000 from an oil and fracking company that, in turn, produced 1,000 pink drill bits.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Fracking-Harmed Residents Demand EPA Administrator McCarthy Drink Pennsylvania Frack Water from Their Homes After Telling Them Its Safe to Drink
Park Forest News


Affected Residents Issue McCarthy #FrackWaterChallenge and Ask EPA to Reopen Investigation of Contamination of Drinking Water By Fracking WASHINGTON--(ENEWSPF)--October 10, 2014. Affected community members from Dimock, Pennsylvania, along with advocacy organizations, rallied outside of EPA Headquarters to demand that EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy either re-open investigations into fracking’s impact on people and the environment, or drink frack water from Pennsylvania that her agency has told residents is safe.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Citizen Action Members Recognize International Day of Action Against Fracking
WICZ


Members of Citizen Action in Binghamton are speaking to residents from Pennsylvania who have been directly affected by hydro-fracking in their communities. It's all part of a rally -- and an effort to recognize today's International Day of action against fracking. Along with Citizen Action, health experts were also present at today's rally, displaying what they say fracking can do to the health of those who are around it.   [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Forum on fracking ban draws crowd
Denton Record-Chronicle
Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe

About 100 people filled the tables and bar stools at Dan’s Silverleaf on Saturday afternoon to get help sorting through the facts and the rhetoric surrounding the proposed ban on hydraulic fracturing. The League of Women Voters sponsored the forum to discuss the proposition brought by a citizen initiative to ban hydraulic fracturing inside the Denton city limits. It was the group’s second such forum this fall and third this year in support of local elections, and one of its best-attended events ever, according to league member Amber Briggle.  [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
More than 100,000 public comments urge changes in N.C.'s proposed fracking rules
Winston-Salem Journal
McClatchy Tribune

The N.C. Mining and Energy Commission is plowing through a mountain of public comments on its proposed fracking standards with less than a month left to fine-tune the safety rules for shale gas drilling. State officials estimate that more than 100,000 comments flooded in by the Sept. 30 deadline and the finally tally could approach 200,000, said Jamie Kritzer, spokesman for the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources.   [Full Story]

Oct 11, 2014
Green Party gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins working to woo Democrats unhappy with Cuomo
Daily News
Kenneth Lovett & Glenn Blain

ALBANY — The only thing standing between Gov. Cuomo and his hopes for a resounding victory on Election Day might be a 61-year-old United Parcel Service worker from Syracuse. Howie Hawkins has taken a leave of absence from his job unloading UPS trucks to run as the Green Party candidate for governor.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Frackers are dumping toxic waste into California’s groundwater
Grist
Madeleine Thomas

California can officially add one more disaster to its rapidly growing list of water woes: The EPA just found that at least nine fracking sites throughout the state have been dumping billions of gallons of contaminated wastewater into its protected aquifers.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
China's Great Frack Forward
Living On Earth


Facing an unprecedented air pollution crisis caused largely by coal, China is looking to its massive natural gas reserves for cleaner burning energy. But as Mother Jones reporter James West tells host Steve Curwood, fracking is bringing new environmental problems to rural Chinese communities. Transcript CURWOOD: Well, as Dabo Guan says, air pollution in many Chinese cities is a public health crisis, with dangerous smog and particulates way beyond safe levels. The Chinese government has begun moving power plants away from population centers, and making massive investments in solar and wind power. And now, as co-authors Jaeah Lee and James West detail in the current issue of Mother Jones Magazine, China has put a lot of cleaner-burning natural gas in its five-year plan, and is looking to the U.S. for fracking technology. James West joined us on a line from his office in San Francisco.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
You Thought California's Drought Couldn't Get Any Worse? Enter Fracking.
Mother Jones
Tom Philpott

I have a great idea. Let's take one of the globe's most important agricultural regions, one with severe water constraints and a fast-dropping water table. And let's set up shop there with a highly water-intensive form of fossil fuel extraction, one that throws off copious amounts of toxic wastewater. Nothing could possibly go wrong ... right? Well... Almost 3 billion gallons of oil industry wastewater have been illegally dumped into central California aquifers that supply drinking water and farming irrigation, according to state documents obtained by the Center for Biological Diversity. The wastewater entered the aquifers through at least nine injection disposal wells used by the oil industry to dispose of waste contaminated with fracking fluids and other pollutants. The documents also reveal that Central Valley Water Board testing found high levels of arsenic, thallium and nitrates—contaminants sometimes found in oil industry wastewater—in water-supply wells near these waste-disposal operations.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Americans Can Save More Money by Not Burning It: Study
Bloomberg
Mark Drajem

Climate change policy is often assumed to be a lose-lose proposition. Nations can pay now for expensive carbon-reduction policies, or they can pay later -- potentially a lot more -- through destructive climate-related events like storms, droughts and flooding. In the U.S., however, that take may not be correct, according to a new study by the environmental group World Resources Institute. It says that improving buildings' energy efficiency, boosting the fuel-economy of automobiles and cutting leaks from the production and transport of natural gas can save money now and cut climate change later.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
How scientists overlooked a 2,500-square-mile cloud of methane over the Southwest (+video)
Christian Science Monitor
Henry Gass

Scientists first noticed the largest methane hotspot in the US years ago, but the readings were so extreme they thought it might be instrument error. Emissions are 80 percent higher than previous Environmental Protection Agency estimates. Scientists have identified the largest hotspot of methane gas in the United States hovering over the Four Corners region of the Southwest, and the find could have big implications for how the country tracks its emissions in the future. Scientists first noticed the data years ago amid satellite measurements collected by the European Space Agency's Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography (SCIAMACHY) instrument. The SCIAMACHY instrument collected atmospheric data over the US from 2002 to 2012. The bright red patch over the Four Corners persisted throughout the study period, but the readings were so extreme scientists still waited several more years before investigating the region in detail.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Climate Action = Economic Gains
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Evidence continues to pour in that policies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions not only aren’t detrimental to economic growth but in fact can fuel it. A new study by World Resources Institute, Seeing Is Believing: Creating a New Climate Economy in the United States, adds compelling evidence by providing examples of areas where government policies and technological progress are already offering the chance to reduce emissions and address climate change while also producing economic benefits. And it shows how new technologies can produce still more reductions with the right policies in place.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
More than 100,000 public comments urge changes in NC's proposed fracking rules
News & Observer
JOHN MURAWSKI

The N.C. Mining and Energy Commission is plowing through a mountain of public comments on its proposed fracking standards with less than a month left to fine-tune the safety rules for shale gas drilling. State officials estimate that more than 100,000 comments flooded in by the Sept. 30 deadline and the finally tally could approach 200,000, said Jamie Kritzer, spokesman for the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources.   [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Exxon, Chevron meet with White House over fracking regs
The Hill
Laura Barron-Lopez

Oil giants ExxonMobil, Chevron and Halliburton met with White House staffers last week to talk about an upcoming federal fracking regulation for operations on public lands. Lobbyists for the companies met with White House officials from the Council on Environmental Quality and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on Monday, according to a record of the meeting recently posted on the OMB's website.   [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Calif. revises proposed fracking rules
E & E Newswire
Debra Kahn

California officials yesterday released a new version of proposed regulations covering hydraulic fracturing and other well stimulation activities that may be the final language when it takes effect next year. The California Department of Conservation's Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) is proposing to require oil companies to notify neighbors of fracking operations and pressure-test wells in advance and disclose to state officials the chemicals that are used. The regulations are the third version to come out since last year's passage of S.B. 4, a bill that required the state to create guidelines for "well stimulation" operations, including hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.   [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
This Methane ‘Hot Spot’ Is Huge, But It’s Nothing Compared To Our Other Methane Sources
ThinkProgress
EMILY ATKIN

A massive amount of the greenhouse gas methane is being released into the atmosphere from underground leaks of natural gas, producing a major U.S. “hot spot” that was previously unknown, according to satellite data released by scientists at NASA and the University of Michigan on Thursday. The 2,500 square mile hot spot — located near the Four Corners border of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah — is spewing methane, a powerful greenhouse gas that is 20 times more effective at causing global warming than carbon dioxide. The methane is likely not from fracking, NASA said, since the data analyzed is from 2003 to 2008, before the fracking boom. Instead, the scientists hypothesize that the leaks are coming from coalbed methane extraction, a process of getting natural gas from underground coal beds.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
40% Drop in Solar PV Cost is Brightest Spot of Global Energy Picture
InsideClimate News
Elizabeth Douglass

In a world wrestling with climate change and the need to phase out fossil fuels, nothing is more critical than making sure there are reliable and cost-effective clean energy technologies ready to fill the void. Keeping track of the pitfalls and possibilities is the Paris-based International Energy Agency, an autonomous organization that has been analyzing energy for 40 years. In 2006, the influential agency began publishing Energy Technology Perspectives, a report that examines energy technologies and their potential for transforming the way the world uses power.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Democrats tell feds to crack down on illegal drilling
Fuel Fix
Jennifer A. Dlouhy

WASHINGTON — Federal land managers need to work harder to prevent oil companies from illegally burrowing into federal mineral estate, four House Democrats say. In a letter to Bureau of Land Management Director Neil Kornze, the Democrats note that the potential economic and environmental costs of a practice known as “drilling without approval” can be substantial — as much as $530,000 annually in lost royalties to North Dakota alone.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Idaho Fractivist Arrested Requesting Public Information
Wild Idaho Rising Tide


At the Payette County Courthouse in Payette, Idaho, police arrested Alma Hasse of Idaho Residents Against Gas Extraction after the 7 pm Thursday, October 9, Payette County Planning and Zoning Commission public hearing about the proposed expansion of the first of two natural gas processing plants and bomb train loading facilities still under construction. Ms. Hasse was within her rights as a Payette County and Idaho citizen to insist on obtaining public official contact information before departing after the meeting. Denied such access and allegedly refusing to leave, she may be charged with trespassing and possibly disorderly conduct or resisting arrest, according to the Payette County Detention Facility where she is being held.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
Small Study May Have Big Answers on Health Risks of Fracking's Open Waste Ponds
InsideClimate News
Zahra Hirji, Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

A first of a kind study from West Virginia will help Americans inside the fracking boom understand the dangers of exposure to VOCs. When Mary Rahall discovered that oil and gas waste was being stored in open-air ponds less than a mile from a daycare center outside Fayetteville, W. Va., she started digging for information about the facility's air emissions and protections for a nearby stream. She wasn't satisfied with the answers she got from state regulators and politicians, so the mother of two set out to find a scientist who could help. Eventually her questions found their way to William Orem, a chemist at the U.S. Geological Survey office in Reston, Va., and he began collecting air and water data at the site last fall. Orem's small study could have implications far beyond Fayetteville, because it's among the first scientific efforts directed at how air emissions from oil and gas waste could be affecting human health. He suspects waste disposal might turn out to be "the weakest link of all" in the oil and gas extraction and production cycle.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
State to first responders: Stay back from burning oil trains
Capital New York
SCOTT WALDMAN

ALBANY—The state is urging first responders to stay away from burning oil trains if more than three cars are on fire and no human lives are at risk, according to documents obtained by Capital. The state Office of Fire Prevention and Control recently revised its guidance for firefighters battling oil train fires. New York responders are now being advised by the state to stay back if an oil train derails and explodes, as trains have done in Virginia, North Dakota and Canada, where 47 people died. “If NO life hazard and more than 3 tank cars are involved in fire, OFPC recommends LETTING THE FIRE BURN unless the foam and water supply required to control is available,” the document says. “Withdraw and protect exposures, including cooling exposed tank cars with unmanned monitors if possible.”  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
How scientists overlooked a 2,500-square-mile cloud of methane over the Southwest
Christian Science Monitor
Henry Gass

Scientists have identified the largest hotspot of methane gas in the United States hovering over the Four Corners region of the Southwest, and the find could have big implications for how the country tracks its emissions in the future. Scientists first noticed the data years ago amid satellite measurements collected by the European Space Agency's Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography (SCIAMACHY) instrument. The SCIAMACHY instrument collected atmospheric data over the US from 2002 to 2012. The bright red patch over the Four Corners persisted throughout the study period, but the readings were so extreme scientists still waited several more years before investigating the region in detail.  [Full Story]

Oct 10, 2014
United States: New York Community Risk And Resiliency Act
MONDAQ


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed into law the Community Risk and Resiliency Act (the Resiliency Act or Act) on September 22, 2014 in conjunction with Manhattan's Climate Week 2014. The Resiliency Act reflects a serious effort to increase New York's preparedness and ability to bounce back after suffering a climate change-related event, by establishing the requirement that State agencies first consider future physical climate risks from storm surges, sea level rise, and flooding, before making permitting or funding decisions. While under the State's Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA), state and local agencies have already begun considering the impacts of their funding and permitting decisions on climate change (e.g., the extent to which a future project will increase greenhouse gases), the Resiliency Act begins from the other end, requiring that agencies consider the future impacts of climate risks on the projects they may fund or permit. Thus, the Resiliency Act conditions approvals, support, and financing of public infrastructure projects on conduct of such analyses by all State infrastructure agencies (such as the Department of Transportation, the Housing Finance Agency, Empire State Development, and some public benefit corporations). The Act also conditions all of the following on state agencies' prior consideration of future climate risks: siting of hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facilities; storage of hazardous wastes; design and construction of petroleum and chemical bulk storage facilities; acquisition of open space through eminent domain; state contracting for maintenance of parkland; state assistance to municipalities closing landfills; state assistance to municipalities revitalizing waterfronts; state provision of assistance to municipalities and not-for-profit corporations conducting coastal restoration projects; state assistance for locally led agricultural and farmland protection activities; issuance of oil, gas, and solutions mining permits; and issuance of all major environmental permits (including Clean Water Act discharge permits, Clean Air Act emissions permits, mining reclamation permits, and wetlands permits). The Act also directs the State's planning agency (the Department of State, or NYSDOS) to work with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) to develop model climate change adaptation zoning laws for use by municipalities. Additionally, the Act requires NYSDEC to adopt regulations by January 1, 2016 establishing science-based state sea level rise projections, and to update such regulations every five years. Finally, the Act directs NYSDEC and NYSDOS to develop additional guidance on the use of resiliency measures that utilize natural resources and natural processes to reduce risk. The Act becomes effective on March 21, 2015, and applies to all permit applications received after the adoption of guidance on implementation of the Act, but no later than January 1, 2017.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Renewables Not Enough: World Needs Democratic, Decentralized Energy, says Report
Common Dreams
Jon Queally

'A timely and equitable energy transition can occur only with greater energy democracy, which requires that workers, communities, and the public at large have a real voice in decision making.'  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Buchanan station new concern in Algonquin pipeline expansion
Westchester County Business Journal
Mark Lungariello

The plan to rebuild and expand a pipeline that pumps natural gas through the Hudson Valley region includes a receiving station in the village of Buchanan. Spectra Energy Partners LP plans to increase the capacity of its Algonquin pipeline to ease an energy bottleneck in the New England region, but the larger amounts of flammable gas that would go through Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties have some residents opposing the plan. The agency responsible for approving the project, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, or FERC, held a public hearing in Cortlandt Manor last month, but few of those following the review process were aware of the receiving station at that time.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
NY1 Online: Experts Weigh In on Upcoming 'Global Frackdown'
NY1 News
Inside City Hall

NY1 VIDEO: Inside City Hall's Josh Robin talked about the upcoming "Global Frackdown" with Dr. Kathy Nolan of Concerned Health Professionals of New York; Alex Beauchamp of Food and Water Watch; and Al Appleton, former commissioner of the city's Department of Environmental Protection.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Health Professionals Object to Governor Cuomo's Characterization of the Science on Fracking
Concerned Health Professionals of New York
Press Release

On behalf of Concerned Health Professionals of New York, Larysa Dyrszka, MD and Sandra Steingraber, PhD released the following statement in response to Governor Cuomo’s comments on Wednesday about the emerging science on fracking: “As scientists and health professionals who have closely followed the science on drilling and fracking for many years, we respectfully take issue with Governor Cuomo’s assertion that some academic reports indicate that fracking is dangerous while others conclude that it is ‘totally safe.’ No recent independent research finds that drilling and fracking is entirely safe. Indeed, nearly every week, new academic publications reveal that the risks created by drilling and fracking are complex, serious, and widespread and include both acute and chronic health problems.” “Claims by the oil and gas industry to the contrary are not science, and they, along with a handful of reports funded by industry, do not belong on equal footing with rigorous, academic, independent studies. The disingenuous effort on the part of the gas industry to create a false debate and so distract attention from the evidence for harm is part of a sophisticated, coordinated propaganda strategy. In this, the gas industry has taken a page out of the playbook of the lead paint and tobacco industries of years ago when they cast aspersions on public health research findings even as Americans suffered rising rates of lead poisoning and lung cancer. Governor Cuomo should not fall for cigarette science.”  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Fracking lawsuit dismissed, appeal in the works
Petoskey News
Mark Johnson

NORTHERN MICHIGAN — A recent injunction order called for the diversion of fresh water used during the hydraulic fracturing process to stop, but was recently dismissed from tribal court.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
PA State Police and Private Security Firms Keeping Close Tabs on Fracking Opponents
Earth Island Journal
Adam Federman

Anti-fracking activists protesting a natural-gas conference in Philadelphia last fall were being monitored by a private security company that sent a photo of a demonstrator to the Pennsylvania State Police, according to an email obtained by Earth Island Journal.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Group pushes for more chemical disclosure at fracking sites
Columbus Dispatch
Danielle Keeton-Olsen

Disclosure of complete chemical information before oil and gas companies break ground on a fracking site could better prepare emergency-response teams for the worst fires, a Cleveland-based environmental and consumer organization said yesterday.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
The Desert Southwest Is Burping Methane Like Nobody’s Business
Slate
Eric Holthaus

Over the next decade or so, our collective climatic future will be won or lost based on how aggressively the world decides to limit greenhouse gas emissions. Increasingly, the greenhouse gas that could provide humanity’s biggest bang for its climate change tackling buck isn’t carbon dioxide—it’s methane. For the first time, a team of scientists have observed the effects of natural gas extraction—which is 95-98 percent methane—from space. Using satellite data, a study published Thursday finds a surprising methane hotspot: New Mexico’s San Juan Basin, an area that some believe is primed for its own oil and gas boom just like the one a few years ago in the Bakken formation of western North Dakota.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Huge Methane Emissions ‘Hot Spot’ Found in U.S.
Climate Central
Bobby Magill

The largest concentration of methane emissions seen in the U.S. over the past decade has been detected by satellite over the the most active coal-bed methane production area in the country — the Four Corners area of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah and Arizona, according to a new study published Thursday. The hotspot, which predates the current hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, boom in the region, is over the San Juan Basin, where energy companies have been drilling and producing natural gas from methane deposits found in underground coal seams for many years. The natural gas is composed of more than 95 percent methane.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
We're Sitting on 10 Billion Barrels of Oil! OK, Two
Bloomberg
Asjylyn Loder and Isaac Arnsdorf

Lee Tillman, chief executive officer of Marathon Oil Corp., told investors last month that the company was potentially sitting on the equivalent of 4.3 billion barrels in its U.S. shale acreage. That number was 5.5 times higher than the proved reserves Marathon reported to federal regulators. Such discrepancies are rife in the U.S. shale industry. Drillers use bigger forecasts to sell the hydraulic fracturing boom to investors and to persuade lawmakers to lift the 39-year-old ban on crude exports. Sixty-two of 73 U.S. shale drillers reported one estimate in mandatory filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission while citing higher potential figures to the public, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Pioneer Natural Resources (PXD) Co.’s estimate was 13 times higher. Goodrich Petroleum Corp.’s was 19 times. For Rice Energy Inc., it was almost 27-fold.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
NYC comptroller calls for more methane regulations
Star-Telegram


NEW YORK — The New York City comptroller is leading a group of investors asking for more methane regulations. Comptroller Scott Stringer asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday to initiate national regulations on methane emissions in the gas and oil industry. Stringer said the federal government "must take action now" because natural gas protection is increasing dramatically throughout the U.S. But he warned the methane it produces can be harmful to the environment. The group controls more than $300 billion in assets, of which $160 billion is from the New York City Pension Funds. Some of that money is invested in oil and natural gas companies.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer and Trillium Asset Management Lead Investor Group Calling on EPA to Propose Strong Methane Regulations
NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer
Press Release

A group of investors with more than $300 billion in assets under management has sent a letter urging U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy to initiate a comprehensive national regulation addressing major sources of methane emissions in the oil and gas industry. In the letter, investors detailed four reasons why comprehensive rulemaking on methane emissions from existing and future oil and gas facilities must be an urgent priority: Methane emissions are a serious climate problem. There are proven, cost-effective solutions that will dramatically cut emissions now. It is insufficient to rely solely on voluntary initiatives and state-level action. Methane policy can reduce risk and create long-term value for investors and the economy.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Fracking: The Media’s New Climate Denial
Bill Moyers & Co
Peter Hart

Over 300,000 people filled the streets of New York City in September as part of the worldwide People’s Climate March, a stirring call for action on global warming. But if you watched TV news that day, you may not have known it happened at all.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Glasgow University to sell its fossil fuel investments
BBC
Roger Harrabin

Glasgow University has become the first in the UK to announce that it will sell off the shares it holds in companies that produce fossil fuels. A spokesman said the university recognised the "devastating impact" that climate change could have and the "need to reduce the world's dependence on fossil fuels".  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Leechburg Area directors urge action on gas lease
Pittsburgh TribLive
Jodi Weigand

A presentation from an oil and gas training specialist Wednesday helped Leechburg Area School Board members agree on one thing: it's time to take meaningful steps toward deciding whether to enter into a lease agreement with EQT Production Co. EQT wants to drill beneath an 8.3-acre tract in West Leechburg at Main and Giron streets, where West Leechburg Elementary School once stood.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Vitali wants Corbett to spell out drilling plans
Daily Times
John Kopp

State Rep. Greg Vitali again urged Gov. Tom Corbett Friday to detail the state’s plan to permit drilling in state parks and forests, a request Vitali repeatedly has made since Corbett proposed the plan during his February budget address. Vitali, D-166, of Haverford, has sought the identities of the state parks and forests slated to be leased by natural gas drillers. He also seeks specific acreage amounts, the identities of the drilling companies involved and revenue calculations.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Satellite Data Shows U.S. Methane ‘Hot Spot’ Bigger than Expected
NASA
Press Release

One small “hot spot” in the U.S. Southwest is responsible for producing the largest concentration of the greenhouse gas methane seen over the United States – more than triple the standard ground-based estimate -- according to a new study of satellite data by scientists at NASA and the University of Michigan. Methane is very efficient at trapping heat in the atmosphere and, like carbon dioxide, it contributes to global warming. The hot spot, near the Four Corners intersection of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah, covers only about 2,500 square miles (6,500 square kilometers), or half the size of Connecticut. In each of the seven years studied from 2003-2009, the area released about 0.59 million metric tons of methane into the atmosphere. This is almost 3.5 times the estimate for the same area in the European Union’s widely used Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research. In the study published online today in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, researchers used observations made by the European Space Agency’s Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography (SCIAMACHY) instrument. SCIAMACHY measured greenhouse gases from 2002 to 2012. The atmospheric hot spot persisted throughout the study period. A ground station in the Total Carbon Column Observing Network, operated by the Department of Energy’s Los Alamos National Laboratory, provided independent validation of the measurement.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Marcellus Life: One Greene County man’s encounter with a landman
Observer-Reporter
Natasha Khan

Leigh Shields refused to allow seismic testing for natural gas on his 88 acres in Spraggs. He thought if he said no to the company asking, that would be the end of it. Along with his wife, Lillian, and 27-year-old son, Alex, the family runs Shields Nursery and Shields Demesne Winery, just south of Waynesburg off Route 218. They grow grapes in their vineyard, which get crushed and stored in old Kentucky bourbon barrels to create Hungarian-style wine called Melomel. To pay homage to their nursery business, their wines have plant names: Bloodroot, Irish Moss and Rosa Rugosa. They live and run businesses in the heart of Southwestern Pennsylvania that’s part of the Marcellus Shale gas boom. But Shields, who opened his nursery in 1982, said he tries to stay away from the industry.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Alone Among the Desperate Souls
The New York Times
ERIC HYNES

While much of the rest of the country suffered through a recession, Williston, N.D., was booming. Fracking had exploited a huge oil reserve, attracting thousands of itinerant workers eager for employment. Among the riggers and laborers flooding into town was a filmmaker searching for work of his own. That would be Jesse Moss, a documentarian in the observational, longitudinal mold. Forget voice-overs or talking-head interviews; what you see is whatever he shot on the fly, almost always alone. With “Speedo” (2003), he monitored the entertaining exploits of a Long Island demolition-derby driver over several years, encompassing victories and defeats, divorce and remarriage.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Fracking Chemicals, Brought to You by Susan G. Komen
Mother Jones
Julia Lurie

Here's some news that frankly, I initially thought was a spoof: for the second year in a row, breast cancer charity Susan G. Komen for the Cure—which caused massive outrage when it defunded Planned Parenthood in 2012—has partnered with Baker Hughes, a leader in the fracking industry. The Houston-based oilfield services company will donate $100,000 to Komen over the year and sell 1,000 pink-painted drill bits used for fracking.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
California aquifers contaminated with billions of gallons of fracking wastewater
RT


Industry illegally injected about 3 billion gallons of fracking wastewater into central California drinking-water and farm-irrigation aquifers, the state found after the US Environmental Protection Agency ordered a review of possible contamination. According to documents obtained by the Center for Biological Diversity, the California State Water Resources Board found that at least nine of the 11 hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, wastewater injection sites that were shut down in July upon suspicion of contamination were in fact riddled with toxic fluids used to unleash energy reserves deep underground. The aquifers, protected by state law and the federal Safe Water Drinking Act, supply quality water in a state currently suffering unprecedented drought.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Martins camp rips Haber on fracking
The Island Now
Bill San Antonio

A campaign advisor for state Sen. Jack Martins (R-Mineola) accused Democratic state Senate candidate Adam Haber on Monday of trying to deceive voters by stating publicly that he would not support hydrofracking in New York while maintaining interests in companies that practice the gas extraction method in other states.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
The Movement to Ban Fracking Has Momentum
Care2


Of course, a big part of our mission on climate change is our fight to ban fracking, and while 2014 has seen some major milestones for our efforts, perhaps the most important of these is the evidence that our movement is growing. In order to get you inspired for the 2014 Global Frackdown, we created a video to show you some of the faces that are out there working hard around the country to ban fracking. As our video demonstrates, we are building on this momentum, and we need you to join us on October 11 to show just how strong we are.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Fracking protesters' banned from Lancashire drill sites
BBC


An energy firm has won a court order to stop campaigners trespassing on land near two sites where it plans to drill for shale gas. Manchester High Court granted Cuadrilla and local farmers an extension to an interim trespass injunction.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Coal, Not Fracking Blamed for U.S. Methane Hot Spot
Bloomberg
Alex Nussbaum

The hot spot near the intersection of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah accounts for almost 10 percent of all methane from natural gas in the U.S., researchers said in a paper published today by the journal Geophysical Research Letters. The area, about half the size of Connecticut, is a major source of gas harvested from coal mines, according to a National Aeronautics and Space Administration statement announcing the study.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Our view: State meddles in fracking report
The Citizen
Editorial

A news report published Monday raises troubling questions about the influence New York state had in a draft report on water and hydrofracking by the U.S. Geological Survey. Capital New York obtained a copy of a report commissioned by the state in 2011 as well as emails between the federal agency and the state Department of Environmental Conservation in which the DEC offers edits to some of the language in the report. Some back and forth can be expected with this type of report, but the large number of requests for changes from the state gives the appearance that the state was meddling more than it should have been.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Walton Family Undermining Rooftop Solar, ILSR Report Finds
Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR)
Stacy Mitchell

The Walton family — majority owners of Walmart — are impeding America’s transition to a clean energy future, a new study by ILSR finds. At a time when more than 500,000 households and businesses are generating their own solar electricity, and the U.S. solar industry is employing 143,000 people, the Waltons are funding nearly two dozen organizations working to roll back renewable energy policies, while a Walton-owned company is pushing for regulations aimed at hindering the growth of rooftop solar power. Download: Full Report | Press Release image: report coverRooftop solar — which is spreading rapidly thanks to favorable economics and strong state policies — offers a tremendous opportunity to accelerate the transition to renewable power, save money for households, and create tens of thousands of new jobs.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Heinberg: Localize Economy or Face the Consequences
San Francisco Public Press
Paul Lorgerie

As climate change continues to threaten California in myriad ways, policymakers face a tough dilemma: promote economic growth or protect the planet. At first, these priorities seem incompatible, but some experts on the topic say the environment and the economy are intimately linked, and are calling for a radical restructuring of communities to make them more local and self-sufficient. Richard Heinberg, an author and environmental activist, says that reimagining communities to function on a smaller scale might be the best way to limit fossil fuel use and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Without doing so, global temperatures could rise 2 degrees Celsius, causing irreversible changes in rainfall, heat, sea-level rise and weather events in the next few decades, such as repeats of Hurricane Katrina.   [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Fracking puppet monster visits Scottish Parliament
The Scotsman


A 10FT ‘pro-fracking’ puppet monster, Mr Frackhead, visited Holyrood today on a tour of the UK looking for places to frack for shale gas. Mr Frackhead posed for photos at the Scottish Parliament, Arthur’s Seat and Holyrood Palace, where ‘the Queen’ tried to stop him from fracking under her official residence in Scotland.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
As Energy Boom Ends, a Political Identity Crisis in Alaska
New York Times
Kirk Johnson

Economic anxiety amid a dwindling oil and gas industry is raising difficult questions about the future. It is also shaping a Senate race in which a Democrat is seeking re-election in a state long dominated by Republicans. FAIRBANKS, Alaska — A gleaming $23 million complex of office buildings, dormitories and workshops has risen from the boreal forest just outside town over the last decade, aimed at training workers for a natural gas pipeline that was supposed to snake from the Arctic to serve energy markets around the world and make Alaska rich all over again. But the pipeline was never built, the victim of a worldwide glut of natural gas that has reduced demand for Alaska’s supply. On a recent weekday afternoon, the meeting rooms and dorms were empty, with just one welding class breaking the silence on the Fairbanks Pipeline Training Center Trust’s sprawling 63-acre campus.  [Full Story]

Oct 9, 2014
Will Andrew Cuomo oppose fracking after getting a scare from Zephyr Teachout?
Grist
Ben Adler

Everyone knows the caricature of New York liberals: out-of-touch fashion designers and media executives in Manhattan. Think of Vogue Editor Anna Wintour hosting high-dollar Democratic fundraisers at her Greenwich Village townhouse. But it was voters outside of New York City who recently came out in droves for the more progressive candidate in the Democratic gubernatorial primary. The reason? Fracking. Gov. Andrew Cuomo was expected to sail through the primary in September. We in the New York media assumed that his progressive challenger in the race, Fordham law professor Zephyr Teachout, would be lucky to break 20 percent, and that her support would come heavily from New York City and its suburbs. Upstate, a largely rural and relatively conservative area, seldom backs the more progressive candidate.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Harms of gas compressor emissions
The River Reporter
Linda Reik

In August, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) published an Environmental Assessment (EA) about potential environmental effects of the natural gas East Side Expansion Project by Columbia Gas Transmission LLC, a subsidiary of NiSource, in accordance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act. This FERC EA concludes that the project would not significantly affect the quality of the human environment and recommends the commission find “no significant impact” and require certain mitigation measures. The project includes demolition of the existing Milford compressor station and construction of a replacement 13 times the existing capacity. A NiSource report lists the expected emissions per year of volatile organic compounds, hazardous air pollutants, greenhouse gases, nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide and particulate matter (see www.NoMilfordCompressor.org). From the EA, it is expected that polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) will be encountered during demolition.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Find Out Which State Contributes Most to Climate Change
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released the 2013 figures for its Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program, now in its fourth year. These figures show which states, as well as which industry sectors and which individual businesses, produce the most climate change-inducing greenhouse gas emissions. The undisputed winner—or loser, if you prefer—is Texas, with its well-established oil drilling industry and its rapidly growing fracked gas sector.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Federal Agencies Can't Shake Enviros' Ozark Drilling Suit
LAW360
Emily Field

Law360, New York (October 08, 2014, 4:24 PM ET) -- An Arkansas federal judge has kept alive environmental groups' suit against three federal agencies that seeks to stop oil and gas drilling in the Ozark National Forest, ruling the groups sufficiently alleged the government had failed to conduct an environmental analysis. U.S. District Judge Kristine G. Baker on Monday denied the agencies’ motion to dismiss claims from the Ouachita Watch League and the Ozark Society that they violated the National Environmental Policy Act and the National Forest Management Act, but she dismissed claims alleging violations of...   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Keystone Be Darned: Canada Finds Oil Route Around Obam
Bloomberg
Rebecca Penty, Hugo Miller, Andrew Mayeda & Edward Greenspon

So you’re the Canadian oil industry and you do what you think is a great thing by developing a mother lode of heavy crude beneath the forests and muskeg of northern Alberta. The plan is to send it clear to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast via a pipeline called Keystone XL. Just a few years back, America desperately wanted that oil.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Will Fracking Fizzle? The future of the 'shale revolution' hinges on the adoption of best practices as industry norms.
US News
Robert A Manning Opinion

For all its enormous impact on global energy markets, the U.S. economy and global geopolitics, its sustainability and wider acceptance of the "shale revolution" – production of gas and tight oil from hydraulic fracturing – fracking remains an open question. Could it fizzle? What is the scenario for the future of shale?   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
County OKs resolution that doesn’t mention fracking
The Sylva Herald
Guintin Ellison

Commissioner Vicki Greene asked her board colleagues for an anti-fracking resolution twice. Commissioners debated a resolution Monday that didn’t mention the word once. Somewhat bizarrely, fracking has emerged as one of the defining issues of the Nov. 4 general election. There is little reason to believe companies would spend money looking for natural gas in the mountains given geologists’ skepticism it exists here. But possible environmental damage from fracking resonates with the Democratic base, at home and across the state. The party leadership is working to turn out the vote; tying fracking around the necks of local Republicans might help them do that.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Fracking Study Shows Consequences Are Uncertain
WUIS
Rachel Otwell & Jamey Dunn

Hydraulic fracturing, commonly called "fracking" - is an extraction method of natural gas that has many environmentalists concerned. It also has energy business booming in towns across the nation, and those towns will soon include ones in southern Illinois. But in states where fracking is already underway, some say public health is at risk and pollution is happening. A recent study in Texas has looked at the liquid byproduct left over from fracking - and how it could be safely handled.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
As Energy Boom Ends, a Political Identity Crisis in Alaska
The New York Times
KIRK JOHNSON

Economic anxiety amid a dwindling oil and gas industry is raising difficult questions about the future. It is also shaping a Senate race in which a Democrat is seeking re-election in a state long dominated by Republicans. FAIRBANKS, Alaska — A gleaming $23 million complex of office buildings, dormitories and workshops has risen from the boreal forest just outside town over the last decade, aimed at training workers for a natural gas pipeline that was supposed to snake from the Arctic to serve energy markets around the world and make Alaska rich all over again. But the pipeline was never built, the victim of a worldwide glut of natural gas that has reduced demand for Alaska’s supply. On a recent weekday afternoon, the meeting rooms and dorms were empty, with just one welding class breaking the silence on the Fairbanks Pipeline Training Center Trust’s sprawling 63-acre campus.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Don’t call it a fracking resolution
Smoky Mountain News
Jeremy Morrison

Following multiple anti-fracking resolutions passed by local governments around the region, Jackson County commissioners have now taken an action of their own. While their resolution never specifically mentions “fracking” or “hydraulic fracturing,” the board — or at least three of its members — seemed satisfied that it afforded them protection against the natural gas exploration method green-lighted for North Carolina by state legislators this year. “The resolution was prepared under the auspice that we are protecting our natural resources,” explained County Manager Chuck Wooten when placing the resolution on the table for consideration Monday afternoon. “It does not reference or distinguish any particular item.”  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Protestors Urge Federal Action Against Offshore Fracking in California Newport Beach Demonstration Highlights Fracking Pollution Threat to Air, Water
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.— As the California Coastal Commission meets in Newport Beach today, Center for Biological Diversity protesters in gas masks and hazmat suits are delivering a letter urging commissioners to press the federal government for greater oversight of fracking in federal waters off California’s coast. The protest starts at 10 a.m. today at Newport Beach Civic Center, 100 Civic Center Drive, Newport Beach. Protesters want the Coastal Commission to stop oil companies from fracking offshore wells and dumping fracking chemicals into California’s ocean. They also want commissioners to demand “consistency review” of fracking in federal waters, which would require public notice and oversight of fracks in the Santa Barbara Channel. The Coastal Commission has already taken steps to demand more information from federal agencies that permit offshore drilling, but the agencies have been largely unresponsive.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Dutchess County considers banning fracking brine on local roads
Legislative Gazette
Richard Moody

The Democratic Caucus of the Dutchess County Legislature will propose a bill in an open committee meeting Wednesday to ban the use of fraking brine on county roads. The bill, drafted by county legislator Joel Tyner, who ran for Congress in 2012 and hosts a radio show on WVKR 91.3 FM, would follow in the footsteps of several other counties across the state in banning the use of brine or salts resulting from the controversial natural gas drilling process know as high volume hydraulic fracturing, to de-ice county roads.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Farmers concerned over effects of fracking on rural land
Blue & Green Tomorrow
Llaria Bertini

The National Farmers’ Union (NFU) has accused the government of ignoring the impact fracking could have on the value of farmers’ land, as it plans to go ahead with proposed measure to drill for shale gas beneath private properties without offering compensation.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
ADVOCACY GROUP PUSHES OHIO OFFICIALS FOR MORE DISCLOSURE OF FRACKING CHEMICALS
Nordonia Hills News Leader
Marc Kovac

Columbus -- An environmental and consumer advocacy group wants lawmakers and Gov. John Kasich to change state law to require more disclosure of chemicals used in horizontal hydraulic fracturing. The Ohio Citizen Action Education Fund cited a well fire in Monroe County earlier this year as evidence for increased disclosure, saying emergency responders did not know the types or locations of chemicals in the incident.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
New fracking rights backed by Government
LocalGov
Kristian Scholfield

The Government’s response to a recent Department of Energy and Climate Change consultation signals the introduction of legislation to provide energy extraction companies with new underground access rights...It intends to supplement current laws by giving operators statutory access rights to land lying 300 metres or more below the surface. There would be a disapplication of the law of trespass in relation to fracking activities carried out at this depth.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Cuomo says conflicting studies make it hard to draw conclusion on fracking
Innovation Trail
Karen DeWitt

Governor Cuomo made some of his most extensive comments on the controversial topic of hydro fracking to date. For the past two years, ever since the Governor asked his health department to conduct a health review, Cuomo has had little to say about the review or even what was being studied. He would only say that the work was continuing.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Fracking isn’t liked by New Yorkers according to new survey
Hudrogen Fuel News


Nearly 80% of poll participants were against hydraulic fracturing. A statewide survey that was commissioned by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) found that almost 8 out of 10 New Yorkers who took part in the poll were in favor of the state’s fracking moratorium, making it quite evident that concerns regarding the safety of the drilling practice are widespread.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Results of EKOS Research poll, October 2014
The Council of Canadians
Press Release

Media release: GLOBAL FRACKDOWN STARTS: Majority of Canadians want fracking moratorium, says EKOS poll, October 8, 2014 Poll questions As you may know, hydraulic fracturing or "fracking" is a process where sand, water and chemicals are injected into the ground to break apart rock formations to extract natural gas or oil. How would you rate your awareness of fracking? Would you say you are very aware, somewhat aware, not very aware, or not at all aware of fracking? The federal government recently commissioned an independent review of fracking, which found a lack of scientific research on fracking well leaks, the safety of fracking chemicals, and the long-term impacts of fracking. Do you strongly support, somewhat support, somewhat oppose, or strongly oppose a national moratorium on fracking until it is scientifically proven to be safe?  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Pinkwashing: Fracking Company Teams Up With Susan G. Komen to ‘End Breast Cancer Forever’
EcoWatch
Sandra Steingraber

What do you get when you cross a breast cancer charity with a frack job? The answer is the image below, which, as I am writing, is going epidemically viral.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
UPDATE 1-Cheniere's Corpus Christi LNG export project clears environmental hurdle
Reuters
Ayesha Rascoe

Oct 8 (Reuters) - Cheniere's liquefied natural gas export project in Texas will not cause significant damage to the environment, federal regulators said on Wednesday, keeping the project on track to potentially receive a construction license by year-end. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's final environmental review concluded that with proper mitigation measures, the construction and operation of the Corpus Christi project would result in "mostly temporary and short-term" impacts. With a favorable environmental study in hand, the project is expected to get FERC's approval to begin construction around November or December.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Group pushes for more chemical disclosure at fracking sites
The Columbus Dispatch
Danielle Keeton-Olsen

Disclosing chemical information before oil and gas companies break ground on a fracking site could better prepare emergency response teams for the worst fires, a Cleveland-based environmental and consumer organization contended today. Based on their study of a Monroe County well pad fire in June, the nonprofit Ohio Citizen Action Education Fund came up with recommendations for state government to clarify chemical disclosure laws for oil and gas companies working in Ohio.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Is anti-fracking protest in the Marcellus Shale being criminalized?
Philadelphia City Paper
Adam Federman

Anti-fracking activists protesting a natural-gas conference in Philadelphia last fall were being monitored by a private security company that sent a photo of a demonstrator to the Pennsylvania State Police, according to an email obtained by Philadelphia City Paper. A few months earlier, at another industry-led conference, state Trooper Michael Hutson delivered a presentation on environmental extremism and acts of vandalism across Pennsylvania's booming Marcellus Shale natural-gas reserves. He showed photographs of several anti-fracking groups in Pennsylvania, including Shadbush Environmental Justice Collective protesters demonstrating at an active gas well site in Lawrence County in western Pennsylvania. That same Pennsylvania state trooper visited the home of anti-fracking activist Wendy Lee, a Bloomsburg University philosophy professor, to question her about photos she took of a natural gas compressor station in Lycoming County. Remarkably, the trooper earlier had crossed state lines and traveled to New York to visit Jeremy Alderson, publisher of the No Frack Almanac, at his home outside Ithaca, to accuse him of trespassing to obtain photos of the same compressor station.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Riverkeeper Raises Concern Over Fracking Waste As De-Icer For NY Roads
WAMC
Allison Dunne

A New York environmental group says the use of fracking waste on some of the state’s roads is occurring more than initially thought. The state agency that regulates the use of fracking brine says it ensures the waste does not have high concentrations of pollutants. Kate Hudson is watershed program director for environmental group Riverkeeper. She says she found information about the use of fracking waste to de-ice some of New York’s roads while working with local groups in Westchester, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, and Albany Counties to ban the use and disposal of fracking waste. She says while advocating for county-level bans:  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Cuomo: ‘I don’t know’ why state edited fracking study
Capital New York
SCOTT WALDMAN

ALBANY—Governor Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday said he was not sure why his administration helped shape a federal study on water quality in the gas-rich Southern Tier. On Monday, Capital reported that officials from the Department of Environmental Conservation and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority weighed in on a federal water quality study that is a necessary first step to prepare for fracking. State officials have claimed that their frequent communications with the U.S. Geological Survey were a normal back-and-forth between federal and state agencies. But in emails obtained by Capital, federal officials occasionally bristled at the editing and the delays from the state, and some fracking risks were downplayed in the final version of the report, compared to the original draft.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Anti-Cancer Susan G. Komen Foundation Accused of 'Pinkwashing' The Fracking Industry
International Business Times
David Sirota

Helping find a cure for cancer or “pinkwashing” carcinogenic pollution? That is the question being raised upon the news that one of the world’s largest fossil fuel services firms is partnering with the Susan G. Komen Foundation on a breast cancer awareness campaign, despite possible links between fracking and cancer.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
In Texas, a Fight Over Fracking
The New York Times
Clifford Kraus

DENTON, Tex. — Many Texans have long held the oil and gas industry as dear to their hearts as a prairie range full of feeding cattle. Now suddenly that love is being tested here in a local election, where a grass-roots campaign against gas producers has pushed the industry into a corner. The battle is over a proposed city ban on hydraulic fracturing — the technique of blasting shale rock with water, sand and chemicals to dislodge oil and gas, often called fracking — in a referendum on Nov. 4. No city in Texas has ever come close to passing such a measure. But in this college town of 130,000 outside Dallas, the producers find themselves in an uphill battle against a diverse band of doorbell ringers and lawn-sign distributors who are working day and night.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Pinkwashing Fracking? How the Komen Board Is Cashing in on Shale Gas
Truthout
Steve Horn

The Wizard of Oz was spot on when he said to “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.” That’s good life advice if you fall into the “Ignorance is bliss” camp. For a journalist though, it’s doing the exact opposite that’s a sin qua non for the job.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Tell Susan G. Komen Don’t Frack With Our Health
EcoWatch
Breat Cancer Action

Breast cancer organization Susan G. Komen and fracking giant Baker Hughes have partnered to distribute 1,000 specially painted pink drill bits around the world.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Anti-Cancer Susan G. Komen Foundation Accused of 'Pinkwashing' The Fracking Industry
International Business Times
David Sirota

Helping find a cure for cancer or “pinkwashing” carcinogenic pollution? That is the question being raised upon the news that one of the world’s largest fossil fuel services firms is partnering with the Susan G. Komen Foundation on a breast cancer awareness campaign, despite possible links between fracking and cancer. According to the website of energy services firm Baker Hughes, “the company will paint and distribute a total of 1,000 pink drill bits worldwide” as a “reminder of the importance of supporting research, treatment, screening and education to help find the cures” for breast cancer. The firm, which is involved in hydraulic fracturing, is also donating $100,000 to the Komen Foundation in what it calls a “yearlong partnership.”   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
GAO Report Confirms: States Better Fracking Regulators than EPA
Hearland.org
Isaac Orr

A new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) confirms what many small-government environmentalists have been saying for years: States are more effective at regulating the disposal of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing operations than is the Environmental Protection Agency.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Fracking Moratorium Backed By 70% Of Canadians: Poll
Huffington Post
Daniel Tencer

A large majority of Canadians would support a moratorium on fracking until there is conclusive evidence that it’s safe, according to a new poll. Seventy per cent of respondents said they would back “a national moratorium on fracking until it is scientifically proven to be safe,” according to the survey carried out by EKOS for the Council of Canadians, a group that has been critical of fracking operations.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Group protests fracking operations off coast
Daily Pilot


Members of the national nonprofit group Center for Biological Diversity, donning gas masks and hazmat suits, protested outside a California Coastal Commission meeting Wednesday to urge the federal government to stop oil companies from performing hydraulic fracking off the coast.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Oil companies’ fracking fines go to Visalia-based water center
The Fresno Bee
Mark Grossi

State authorities have fined two oil companies a total of $476,784 for illegally sending salty fluids and drilling wastes into unlined pits, including fluids from controversial hydraulic fracturing.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Report: police sharing intelligence on activists with gas industry
NPR State Impact PA
MARIE CUSICK

According to the Pittsburgh City Paper, state and federal law enforcement have joined in an intelligence-sharing network with the oil and gas industry to follow the activities of environmental activists. The paper cites documents it obtained showing a state trooper giving a presentation to industry representatives with photographs of several anti-fracking groups. According to the article, the same trooper visited the homes of activist Wendy Lee, a Bloomsburg University professor, and crossed state lines to visit the home of Jeremy Alderson, publisher of the No Frack Almanac, at his home outside Ithaca, New York.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
The Media's New Climate Denial
OpEd News
Peter Hart

When journalists cover fracking, they often fail to mention its contribution to global warming. What planet does Big Media think it's living on? Over 300,000 people filled the streets of New York City in September as part of the worldwide People's Climate March, a stirring call for action on global warming. But if you watched TV news that day, you may not have known it happened at all. The Sunday chat shows totally skipped this historic climate march. Instead, one program on the supposedly liberal MSNBC produced a sad segment about how voters are loyal to either Starbucks or Chick-fil-A. Who cares about a dynamic and broad-based social movement when you can reduce the country's population to two corporate chains? Sensible people know there's no more arguing about climate change: The planet is warming due to human activity. The only important question now is whether we plan to do anything about it. It will require, among other things, a massive shift away from burning oil, gas, and coal, as Naomi Klein argues in her brilliant new book, This Changes Everything.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Additional St. Marys drilling setback increase proposed
Bradford Era
Colin Deppen

ST. MARYS — The City of St. Marys is upping the ante on a new set of oil and gas drilling restrictions, meant to ensure greater oversight over a burgeoning local Marcellus Shale presence. The city’s Planning Commission on Tuesday voted to increase a key restriction found in proposed changes to the city’s oil and gas zoning ordinance drafted by city solicitor Tom Wagner and presented by him in a city council meeting on Monday night.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Nova Scotia Wants Offshore Drilling Liability Raised to C$1B
NGI Daily Gas Price Index
Charles Passut

One week after introducing legislation to continue a moratorium on high-volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF), Nova Scotia’s provincial leaders announced plans to amend rules for offshore drilling, including raising the liability for operators to C$1 billion from C$30 million.  [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Pro-Fracking Camp Outspending Opponents in Denton, TX
NGI Shale Daily
Joe Fisher

Supporters of Barnett Shale drilling and hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in Denton, TX, have far outraised and outspent their anti-fracking opponents one month before the town's citizens are to vote on a measure that would ban fracking within the city limits.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Commonwealth Court takes up issue of drilling in state parks and forests
State Impact PA
Susan Phillips

The fate of expanded natural gas drilling in Pennsylvania’s parks and forests is now in the hands of seven Commonwealth Court Judges. Governor Tom Corbett wants to lease 25,000 acres of additional state land to drillers in order to raise $95 million to plug a hole in the 2014-2015 fiscal year’s $29.1 billion budget. The Commonwealth’s seven judge panel heard arguments Wednesday from an environmental attorney challenging the Governor’s authority to lease that land, and to use the proceeds for the general fund.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Teach-in on fracking planned Saturday, during Global Frackdown
Portland Tribune
Steve Law

Opponents of an oil and gas drilling method known as hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” will hold events around the world on Oct. 11, including one in downtown Portland, at the third-annual Global Frackdown.   [Full Story]

Oct 8, 2014
Better get an attorney, community leaders advise property owners after meeting with ET Rover pipeline officials
The Ann Arbor News
Jiquanda Johnson

GENESEE COUNTY, MI - Property owners whose land may involve a controversial, proposed natural gas pipeline better get attorneys, some community leaders. That's their advice following their meeting Tuesday, Oct. 7, with ET Rover company officials about the proposed project.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Under Pressure, Texas to Install Air Monitor in Heavily Fracked County
InsideClimate News
Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

Investigation by ICN and the Center for Public Integrity helped spur Karnes County commissioners to think seriously about fracking's toxic air emissions.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Edited fracking study shows Cuomo’s style
Capital New York
Jimmy Vielkind

ALBANY—To people embroiled in the debate over natural gas hydrofracking, Monday's revelation that the Cuomo administration edited and delated a federal geological study on fracking was further evidence of the administration putting politics before science. More broadly, it was the latest example of Andrew Cuomo being Andrew Cuomo.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Fracking still worrisome [Editorial]
Baltimore Sun


The development of natural gas supplies located deep in the rocky landscape of Western Maryland carries significant environmental risks, but there are regulations the state can impose that would reduce those dangers. The latest study of this issue — a draft report released last Friday by Maryland's Department of the Environment and Department of Natural Resources — takes a somewhat optimistic view of that circumstance, but isn't exactly a game-changer. The assessment looked at the various phases of the fracking process, from site preparation and drilling to production and finally, reclamation, and rated the potential risks involved from low to high. Most surprising was that the authors regarded the risk of water contamination as being "low" and at worst, "moderate." That would seem to contradict a University of Maryland study released just two months ago that concluded there was a "moderately high" likelihood of pollution from fracking, which involves the injection of pressurized water, sand and chemicals into wells to break up underground rock and release natural gas that is trapped within it. But that study, too, recommended ways the state could reduce that risk through regulations such as keeping fracking wells a healthy distance away from drinking water wells.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Report: Fracking study changed after intervention by NY State officials
Al Jazeera America
Amel Ahmed

A 2013 federal water study was edited to play down the negative effects of hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” following a flurry of email exchanges between the authors and New York state officials, according to a report published this week by local political news website Capital New York. The study, conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), had examined naturally occurring methane in water wells across the gas-rich Southern Tier, a group of counties located on New York’s border with Pennsylvania.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
EQT faces charges in 2012 spill at Tioga County drilling site
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Stephanie Ritenbaugh

The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office has filed a criminal complaint against Downtown-based EQT Corp. regarding an incident in 2012 in which flowback water leaked from a shale drilling site in Tioga County. Flowback is water containing sediment, metals and salt that returns to the surface after hydraulic fracturing. The attorney general’s office launched a criminal investigation on Sept. 22 based on a referral from the state Fish and Boat Commission, alleging that EQT allowed flowback water from a 6-million gallon impoundment at a well site in Tioga County to enter three waterways, according to the complaint. One of those waterways is an unnamed tributary of Rock Run, which is designated as a high quality, cold water fishery by the state Department of Environmental Protection and a Class A wild brook trout stream by the Fish and Boat Commission.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Will they drill Rolling Hills? Residents worry about plans in their Wyoming town
Billings Gazette
Benjamin Storrow

ROLLING HILLS — Orvie Stoneking was 65, retired from the railroad after 38 years, when the letter arrived. It bore the letterhead of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and informed Stoneking the land beneath his home was to be auctioned off in an oil and gas lease. Development could result in physical alterations to his property, the letter said, though it noted that land leased to oil companies is not always drilled. At first, Stoneking and his wife, Marcella, were confused. They wondered what anyone would want with their 5-acre plot. The couple live on a dirt drive in the community of Rolling Hills, which occupies a windswept plateau overlooking the North Platte River just north of Glenrock. They keep 20 chickens, six horses and two cows.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
New route for gas pipeline avoids Floyd County, passes through Roanoke County
Roanoke.com
Duncan Adams

EQT Corp. confirmed on Tuesday that a revised route for a proposed interstate natural gas transmission pipeline will exclude Floyd County, where stiff opposition to the project emerged months ago. Instead, as envisioned, a portion of the revised route will pass through Roanoke County on its way from West Virginia to another natural gas pipeline in Pittsylvania County.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Emergency Responders Train in Use of Foam
Observer Reporter
Kathie Warco

Fighting fires using foam is certainly nothing new. But with the increasing number of wells, tanks and compressor stations associated with the Marcellus Shale industry, learning how to use it is even more crucial for emergency responders. Firefighters and public safety personnel from Washington and Greene counties underwent a six-hour training course last month through the Region 13 Task Force, which includes counties as far north as Mercer and as far east as Somerset.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
‘Wild West’ Approach to Regulation in Bakken Shale Means Bomb Trains Continue to Roll
DeSmogBlog
JUSTIN MIKULKA

Prepare yourself for a rare moment of honesty from the oil industry. It happened on Sept. 23 at a hearing of the North Dakota Industrial Commission during a discussion on ways to make Bakken crude oil less flammable for transportation. “The flammable characteristics of our product are actually a big piece of why this product is so valuable. That is why we can make these very valuable products like gasoline and jet fuel,” said Tony Lucero of oil producer Enerplus.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
DEP seeks record fine against gas driller as AG files criminal charges
NPR State Impact PA
KATIE COLANERI

Pennsylvania regulators are seeking a record $4.5 million fine against EQT Corp. for a major leak from an impoundment pond in Tioga County, the Department of Environmental Protection said Tuesday in a news release. The announcement comes one week after the state Attorney General’s office filed criminal charges against the company for the same incident. In May 2012, between 300 and 500 gallons of “flowback fluid” – the liquid the comes back out of the ground after a well has been fracked – seeped out of an impoundment pond at a well site in Duncan Township. Flowback contains high levels of salts, heavy metals and some naturally occurring radioactive materials.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Oil by rail or pipelines? A false choice.
The Hill
Lorne Stockman

As the debate around the Keystone pipeline and crude by rail in North America grows, perhaps you have gotten the impression that whether by rail or pipe, tar sands oil will make it to market. Nothing could be further from the truth. Tar sands crude-by-rail will not make up for missing pipeline capacity, and that is why stopping pipelines matters for keeping tar sands in the ground. Even industry and their allies face the facts when asked about crude by rail;  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Most back drill ban Poll finds wide support for state moratorium on hydraulic fracturing
Times Union
Brian Nearing

Albany Most New Yorkers support the state's ongoing moratorium on natural gas hydrofracking, with people worried about potential damage to air and water widely outnumbering those who see added jobs and taxes as an economic boost, according to a poll released Monday by a prominent environmental group. Support for the moratorium, which will remain in place unless and until the state completes its six-year review of a potential environmental plan that could allow hydrofracking, was favored by a 79 to 17 percent margin, according to the poll done for the Natural Resources Defense Council. Opposition to ever opening up the state to hydrofracking ran 56 to 35 percent, nearly the identical findings for those who were not confident that the technique — which injects a high-pressure blend of water, chemicals and sand into underground gas-bearing rock — could be done safely.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Edited fracking study shows Cuomo’s style
Capital New York
Jimmy Vielkind

ALBANY—To people embroiled in the debate over natural gas hydrofracking, Monday's revelation that the Cuomo administration edited and delayed a federal geological study on fracking was further evidence of the administration putting politics before science. More broadly, it was the latest example of Andrew Cuomo being Andrew Cuomo.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Fracking still worrisome [Editorial]
The Baltimore Sun
Editorial

The development of natural gas supplies located deep in the rocky landscape of Western Maryland carries significant environmental risks, but there are regulations the state can impose that would reduce those dangers. The latest study of this issue — a draft report released last Friday by Maryland's Department of the Environment and Department of Natural Resources — takes a somewhat optimistic view of that circumstance, but isn't exactly a game-changer. The assessment looked at the various phases of the fracking process, from site preparation and drilling to production and finally, reclamation, and rated the potential risks involved from low to high. Most surprising was that the authors regarded the risk of water contamination as being "low" and at worst, "moderate." That would seem to contradict a University of Maryland study released just two months ago that concluded there was a "moderately high" likelihood of pollution from fracking, which involves the injection of pressurized water, sand and chemicals into wells to break up underground rock and release natural gas that is trapped within it. But that study, too, recommended ways the state could reduce that risk through regulations such as keeping fracking wells a healthy distance away from drinking water wells.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Naomi Klein: UK fracking trespass law flouts democratic rights
The Guardian
Adam Vaughan

Ministers’ rewriting of the law to allow fracking to happen beneath people’s homes without their permission flouts basic democratic rights, according to Naomi Klein. The author and activist said that the UK government’s changes to trespass laws, to speed up the ability for shale gas companies to frack beneath landowners’ property, was energising resistance to fracking in Britain. “What is animating the anti-fracking movement? Yes, it’s water. It’s also a defence of democracy. The fact the government is colluding with energy companies to force the right to frack underneath people’s homes without their permission flies in the face of the most common-sense definition of democracy and self-definition,” she told an audience at a Guardian event in London on Monday.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Approval of Methane Storage Expansion near Seneca Lake Causes Concern
WETM
Kelly Hall

SENECA LAKE, N.Y (18 NEWS) -- Last week, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission gave Crestwood Midstream approval to begin construction of a methane gas storage facility expansion in salt caverns next to Seneca Lake. However, the approval has one local organization, Gas Free Seneca, in uproar. Co-founder of Gas Free Seneca, Joseph Campbell, said Crestwood Midstream's salt caverns are not meant for methane gas. "These caverns were never intended for pressurized gas storage. They were created as solution mining for salt,” said Campbell.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Fracking Development Pushing Farmer Out
wboy.com
Alex Hines

As you drive up to La Paix Herb Farm, the first thing you'd usually see is a sign that reads "peace" in several languages. Nowadays though, you'll first see a sign reading "for sale." Bonhage-Hale said she can't run an organic herb farm with fracking pads all around her, so she's decided it's time to leave. "Yes, it's not an easy decision, but I think it is a wise one if they're going to put all these fracking pads in Lewis County and elsewhere, and pipelines. I mean, it just goes on and on," said Bonhage-Hale. Other county residents are looking forward to the growth. Lewis County Economic Development Director Mike Herron said the oil and gas exploration in the county has the potential to add thousands of jobs in many different areas. "In the building of the pipelines, in the compressor facilities, and in the longer term, you're going to need people to continue to maintain and operate these facilities," Herron said. While that may make life better for many in the county, Bonhage-Hale said it will destroy her way of life at La Paix.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Connections: Cuomo's Fracking Water Study; History of Ithaca Radio
WXXI
Evan Dawson

In the first part of the show, we talk with Scott Waldman of Capital about his story on a fracking study commissioned by the Cuomo Administration. The study was meant to find the impact fracking had on the state's drinking water, but the spotlight is now on how administration officials had a hand in editing and delaying the study.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Ban federal fracking
The Hill
Wenonah Hauter Opinion

The request from Senate Democrats to the Office of Budget and Management (OMB) for the "strongest possible" fracking regulations (“Senate Dems call for ‘strongest possible’ fracking regs,” Sept. 20) is indeed disappointing. Public disclosure of chemicals, many of which are carcinogenic or toxic, will not prevent the poisoning of water resources. Nor does a “transparent and permanent database to document the chemicals” address the risks inherent in fracking on our precious public lands. While the rhetoric in the letter advocating for strong rules on “well constructions and integrity and wastewater management” sounds good, the impacts of fracking cannot be regulated. Beyond the fact that well casings often fail immediately, it is well documented that, over time, casings leak as the concrete degrades. Further, managing the millions of gallons of wastewater is a daunting and almost impossible task that is impossible to regulate effectively.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Senator ‘concerned’ about edited fracking report
Capital NY
Scott Waldman

ALBANY—State Senator Tony Avella says he's concerned about the Cuomo administration's handling of a key fracking study. Reacting to a Capital report on the administration's efforts to edit a federal study in a way that downplayed its characterization of potential environmental and health risks from fracking, Avella said that "science will determine the state's decision" on whether to lift a moratorium on the practice or institute a formal ban. Avella, a member of the Senate's Cuomo-backed Independent Democratic Conference, is one of the state's leading opponents of fracking.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
How Will Fracking Affect Your Homeowners Insurance?
Nerd Wallet
Alice Holbrook

The method of natural gas drilling known as hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” has caused controversy across the U.S. Advocates argue that it promises increased energy independence. For others, it means environmental catastrophe. In the ongoing debate, two things are for sure. The practice is responsible for much of the recent spike in natural gas production in the United States, and homeowners are often caught in the middle. Those who lease their land for drilling can see huge profits, but some reports suggest that these profits come with risk for both lessors and their neighbors – and who pays for these risks can be a complicated question.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Pennsylvania seeks record $4.5m fine on 'leaking' fracking waste site
The Guardian via AP


Pennsylvania environmental regulators are pursuing a record $4.5m fine against a gas driller over what they describe as a major case of pollution from a leaking waste pit. The Department of Environmental Protection announced on Tuesday that it is seeking the penalty against EQT Corp. The acting DEP secretary, Dana Aunkst, said EQT has been uncooperative during the investigation and “fails to recognise the ongoing environmental harm” from its leaking impoundment in Duncan Township, Tioga County. The Pittsburgh-based company says it dealt promptly with the leak and accuses state regulators of trying to grab headlines. EQT is suing the agency over its interpretation of Pennsylvania’s Clean Streams Law.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
NEW POLL: 8 in 10 New Yorkers Support State’s Fracking Moratorium
NRDC
Press Release

NEW YORK (October 7, 2014) – A new statewide poll of New Yorkers found that nearly eight in 10 support the state’s moratorium on fracking, amidst widespread concern over the safety of the practice. At the same time, the overwhelming majority support more renewable energy development. “Across party lines—from the city to the country—New Yorkers have made it clear that they want a better future for this state than those that have been ravaged by the oil and gas industry,” said Kate Sinding, Director of the Community Defense Project. “People here know that fracking is a snake oil cure for economic woes, one that comes with steep costs—in the form of water pollution, air contamination, health issues and destroyed communities. Instead, we want to harness clean energy from the sun and the wind to power our homes, create more jobs and revive our economies for years to come.” The results come while there is already a de facto moratorium on fracking in New York, in order to give the state time to evaluate the environmental and public health risks the practice poses. This polling suggests New Yorkers are supportive of this approach, which has come under attack from the oil and gas industry and its political allies.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Scarred Landscapes: Striking Aerial Photos of Fracking in North Dakota
The Weather Channel
Michele Berger

North Dakota’s holds nearly four billion barrels of "undiscovered, technically recoverable oil," according to the most recent estimates from the U.S. Geological Survey. When combined with nearby Three Forks Formation, that number almost doubles. Attempts to frack this untapped resource have change the land — maybe forever — and 35-year-old photographer Tristan Spinski aimed to capture that transformation in his series, "." "What struck me particularly was the scarring of the landscape," he told weather.com. "You’re looking at the ecological or environmental toll but you’re also looking at the cultural toll. It’s complicated." Spinski, a former newspaper photojournalist, had the chance to see this marred acreage from a unique vantage: thousands of feet in the air. The resulting aerial series reveals what happens when North Dakota land once used for agriculture becomes North Dakota land used in pursuit of oil. For Spinski, an assignment for a national magazine became much more.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Most back drill ban
Times Union
Brian Nearing

Most New Yorkers support the state's ongoing moratorium on natural gas hydrofracking, with people worried about potential damage to air and water widely outnumbering those who see added jobs and taxes as an economic boost, according to a poll released Monday by a prominent environmental group. Support for the moratorium, which will remain in place unless and until the state completes its six-year review of a potential environmental plan that could allow hydrofracking, was favored by a 79 to 17 percent margin, according to the poll done for the Natural Resources Defense Council.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Naomi Klein: UK fracking trespass law flouts democratic rights
The Guardian
Adam Vaughan

Ministers’ rewriting of the law to allow fracking to happen beneath people’s homes without their permission flouts basic democratic rights, according to Naomi Klein. The author and activist said that the UK government’s changes to trespass laws, to speed up the ability for shale gas companies to frack beneath landowners’ property, was energising resistance to fracking in Britain. “What is animating the anti-fracking movement? Yes, it’s water. It’s also a defence of democracy. The fact the government is colluding with energy companies to force the right to frack underneath people’s homes without their permission flies in the face of the most common-sense definition of democracy and self-definition,” she told an audience at a Guardian event in London on Monday.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Study: Sand mining for fracking operations could impact region's water, air quality
Ellwood City Ledger
Suzanne Elliot

Sand mining operations hundreds of miles away in Minnesota and Wisconsin could affect water and air quality in western Pennsylvania, according to a recent report by the Civil Society Institute’s Boston Action Research, a Boston human rights advocacy group. What makes the findings of the report significant to the western Pennsylvania region is the sand itself. Frac sand, used in oil and natural gas drilling, is a high-purity quartz sand with very durable and very round grains, according to geology.com. It cannot be crushed.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Plan would limit fracking near western Md. lake
SF Gate via AP


OAKLAND, Md. (AP) — A proposed management plan for the Deep Creek watershed seeks to limit hydraulic fracturing for natural gas near Maryland's largest freshwater lake. The plan presented Tuesday to the Garrett County Commissioners would prohibit wellheads in more than 41,000 acres around Deep Creek Lake. The watershed comprises about 10 percent of the county. The commissioners accepted the plan but took no action on any of its proposals.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
More fracking means more sand
AAP


The white sand beaches in Pennsylvania are a mile underground, where salt water and fine mesh sand luxuriate in the fracks of the Marcellus Shale. The volume of frack sand used at each well to prop open newly created fissures and allow gas to flow to the wellbore has been on the rise over the past year. By some estimates, the increase has been dramatic. "Most customers are pumping as much as they can," said Iain McIntosh, vice president at Baker Hughes, a Texas-based oil and gas service firm that's contracted to hydraulically fracture wells for operators in shale plays, including the Marcellus that underlies much of Pennsylvania. Baker Hughes had seen the use of sand, or proppant, double, McIntosh said.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Groups on both sides raise $280,000 in city’s most expensive election
Denton Record-Chronicle
Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe

The first round of campaign finance reports show the proposition against hydraulic fracturing inside the city is already the most expensive campaign in Denton’s history, with both sides vying for the right to call themselves “grass roots.”  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Fracking and the moment of truth on methane emissions
News Observer
Joe Nocera Opinion

the word is that the EPA and the White House are in the process of deciding what tack to take in reducing methane emissions (although any announcement will probably have to wait until after the November elections). If the administration takes the right course, methane emissions could likely be reduced by 40 percent or 50 percent over the next five years – enough to make natural gas a genuinely cleaner alternative to coal and a critical component in reducing greenhouse gasses. But if it doesn’t – if the government decides to back away from regulation, or allow industry to reduce emissions voluntarily – then the promise of natural gas as a cleaner fuel could well go unrealized.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Study: Renewables As Green As You’d Expect
Climate Central
Bobby Magill

A lot of metals go into making solar cells and wind turbines, raw materials such as copper, iron, rare earth metals such as indium and others and that involve a lot of greenhouse gases and other pollution when they’re mined and processed to make parts for renewable power generators. So just how green are these sources of low-carbon renewable electricity? Pretty green, it turns out.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Confirmed: California Aquifers Contaminated With Billions Of Gallons of Fracking Wastewater
DeSmogBlog
Mike G

After California state regulators shut down 11 fracking wastewater injection wells last July over concerns that the wastewater might have contaminated aquifers used for drinking water and farm irrigation, the EPA ordered a report within 60 days. It was revealed yesterday that the California State Water Resources Board has sent a letter to the EPA confirming that at least nine of those sites were in fact dumping wastewater contaminated with fracking fluids and other pollutants into aquifers protected by state law and the federal Safe Drinking Water Act.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
DEP seeks $4.5 million record fine against EQT for impoundment leak
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Katelyn Ferral

State regulators are aiming to levy a record fine against another shale gas company for leaks in its wastewater ponds. Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection announced Tuesday that it has filed a civil complaint, seeking to fine Pittsburgh-based EQT Production Co. a record $4.5 million for a 2012 impoundment leak in Tioga County. If the state Environmental Hearing Board approves the fine, it would be the largest given to a shale gas driller in the state.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Wisconsin county shuts down frac-sand operation 'running wild'
Star Tribune
Tony Kennedy

A Wisconsin frac-sand mine that was “running wild” and dumping polluted wastewater into an unlined pond against regulations has been shut down by Trempealeau County. The Guza Pit, four miles south of Independence, Wis., had been operating without a permit and was shut down Monday with a “stop-work” order from county regulators. It could face fines when the situation is sorted out, said Kevin Lien, who heads the county’s zoning office.   [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
One Key to Exports: Liquid Gas
The New York Times
CONRAD DE AENLLE

New methods of producing natural gas are expected to turn the United States from an importer into a large exporter in less than a decade, assuming that the gas can be exported in sufficient quantities cheaply enough to compete on world markets. That is likely to happen, industry authorities say, because the technology for liquefying gas — essential for taking it across oceans — also continues to improve, making the process more economically efficient and environmentally safer. With exports virtually nil now, the Energy Department forecasts shipments abroad of liquefied natural gas equivalent to two trillion cubic feet by 2020, roughly 7 percent of expected domestic production. Target markets would be Western Europe and Asia, where gas costs more to produce.  [Full Story]

Oct 7, 2014
Fracking Development Pushing Farmer Out
WBOY
Alex Hines

As you drive up to La Paix Herb Farm, the first thing you'd usually see is a sign that reads "peace" in several languages. Nowadays though, you'll first see a sign reading "for sale." Bonhage-Hale said she can't run an organic herb farm with fracking pads all around her, so she's decided it's time to leave.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Documents reveal Halliburton fracking proposal at Collier-Hogan oil well, shed new light on drilling
Naples News
June Fletcher

NAPLES, Fla. - Although the company has long denied it fracked the controversial Collier-Hogan well, newly released documents show the Dan A. Hughes Co. received a “hydraulic fracture” proposal last October from the Halliburton Co. The proposal is very similar to a controversial “acid stimulation” technique that a different company, Baker Hughes, proposed in December and eventually performed for Hughes at year’s end. The Dan A. Hughes Co. confirmed Monday that Baker Hughes, an unrelated oil field services company, also used a different acid technique to increase production at the well in October.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Methane emissions rise 135 percent on federal lands: Report
Washington Examiner
Zack Colman

Methane emissions from fracking on federal lands more than doubled between 2008 and 2013, according to a report by left-leaning think tank Center for American Progress. The report drew from Interior Department data to show that emissions of the potent but short-lived greenhouse gas rose 135 percent over the period. Much of the emissions were attributed to "venting" and "flaring" — meaning igniting excess natural gas produced at hydraulic fracturing sites. Methane is believed to trap heat at a rate 25 times greater than carbon dioxide. Scientists say such greenhouse gases exacerbate climate change.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Reports on crude oil shipments in Pennsylvania to be made public
Pittsburgh Business Times
Patty Tascarella

The Pennsylvania Office of Open Records has ordered the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency to release disclosures from railroads about crude oil shipments but it’s not clear when the public will see the reports, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. PEMA, which signed confidentiality agreements with Norfolk Southern Railway Co. and CSX Transportation, said it wouldn’t appeal the order but hasn’t determined when the reports will be released to the public and both railroads said they were reviewing the decision, according to the article.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Endangered species in Eagle Ford Shale gets help from UT group
fuel fix
Jennifer HIller

Few people have heard of the spot-tailed earless lizard, once common in South Texas. But the rare lizard’s likely habitat includes large swaths of the Eagle Ford Shale, the prolific oil and gas field south of San Antonio. A 2010 petition by an environmental group to list the spot-tailed earless lizard as a federally protected species is hanging in limbo. “Basically the proverbial you-know-what is going to hit the fan if they propose to list it,” said Melinda Taylor, executive director of the Center for Global Energy, International Arbitration and Environmental Law at the University of Texas at Austin School of Law. U.S. Fish and Wildlife in 2011 said there was substantial information that listing the spot-tailed earless lizard as endangered or threatened may be warranted. It’s the first step in what can be a years-long process to list a species – but it doesn’t mean that the lizard ultimately will receive any kind of listing to try to ensure it’s survival.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
New York’s Carbon Cutting Plan Is Ambitious, but the Devil’s in the Details - See more at:
Politics
Peter Rugh

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has outlined what many consider an ambitious plan to reduce the city’s greenhouse gas output, raising hopes that New York could lead the way for other cities to take significant steps to cut emissions. Reviews for the plan, which entails cutting emissions by 80 percent from 2005 levels by the year 2050, have been mostly positive from environmentalists and real-estate magnates alike. But, observers say, its success or failure largely rests on how it is implemented.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Environmental groups call for BLM to create comprehensive leasing plan
Daily Times
Erny Zah

CHACO CANYO — A group of environmentalists are calling for the Bureau of Land Management to compose a comprehensive leasing plan for the lower San Juan Basin in areas near Chaco Canyon National Historic Park. "We're not against oil and gas drilling, but it has to be done properly," said Bruce Gordon, president of EcoFLight, during a flight over the park and its surroundings on Monday morning. The Partnership for Responsible Business and the New Mexico Green Chamber of Commerce organized the flyover tour that included one tribal leader and a handful of journalists.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Billion-dollar windfall or job-killer? Candidates for governor still at odds over gas tax
Watchdog.org
Rachel Martin

PITTSBURGH — The gubernatorial election finally could help settle a longstanding question about natural gas drilling and taxes in Pennsylvania. The debate over whether the state should levy a severance tax has dogged Gov. Tom Corbett throughout his term. During his 2010 campaign, he had pledged not to raise taxes, but managed a workaround through a per-well impact-fee system that went into effect in 2012. Now, Democratic challenger Tom Wolf prominently features a severance tax in his “Fresh Start” campaign, pledging to spend the potential billion dollars a year on perceived education budget shortfalls, among other things.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
High Court Won't Revive $17M Award In Houston Land Case
LAW360
Jeremy Heallen

Law360, Houston (October 06, 2014, 5:32 PM ET) -- The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday refused to reinstate a landowner group's $17 million judgment against the city of Houston that was tossed after a state appeals court found that environmental concerns justified restrictions against oil and gas development near Lake Houston. The high court refused to hear Trail Enterprises Inc.'s complaint that the Fourteenth District Court of Appeals ignored constitutional protections against governmental "takings" of private property when it ruled that the need to protect the lake as a source of drinking water insulated the...  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
‘Moment of Truth’ on Emissions
New York Times
Joe Nocera Opinion

In March, the Obama administration issued a white paper as part of its Climate Action Plan entitled “Strategy to Reduce Methane Emissions.” A big part of the strategy was built around cutting down on the methane emissions that result from oil and gas production, particularly the hydraulic fracturing method of extracting natural gas from the ground — a.k.a., fracking. In the white paper, the administration said that the Environmental Protection Agency would decide by the fall how best to go about it.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
One Further Step Towards UK Shale: Government Provides Underground Drilling Access for Developers
National law Review


The existing UK legal framework dictates that mineral rights to petroleum belong to the Crown, with the Government issuing licences to operators to permit them to exploit those petroleum rights. However, subject to those mineral rights in favour of the Crown, owners of freehold land have rights over their land both at surface level and down to the centre of the earth. This means that after receiving a licence from the Government, an operator must also obtain the landowner’s permission in order to have access to and operate under privately owned land. If an operator fails to obtain such permission it will be committing a trespass. Operators must therefore negotiate with individual landowners to secure underground access (usually in return for a payment). These negotiations can be protracted and there is currently no standardised approach.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Senate Committee Puts Two Bad Environmental Bills On Agenda For Monday
PA Environment Digest


The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee is scheduled to meet Monday, October 6 to consider two bad environmental bills-- House Bill 1565 (Hahn-R-Northampton) eliminating the nearly 4 year old requirement for stream buffers in High Quality and Exceptional Value streams and House Bill 2354 (Snyder-D-Fayette) which authorizes one House of the General Assembly to veto any greenhouse gas emission reduction plan required by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Former DEP Secretary Urges Senators To Oppose Anti-Stream Buffer Bill
PA Environment Digest


David E. Hess, Department of Environmental Protection Secretary under Governors Ridge and Schweiker, wrote to all members of the Senate Tuesday urging them to oppose House Bill 1565 (Hahn-R- Northampton) eliminating the nearly 4 year old requirement for stream buffers in High Quality and Exceptional Value streams if it comes up for a vote in the five remaining days of legislative session.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
DEP Citizens Advisory Council Urges Senate To Pass Water Well Standards Bill
PA Environment Digest


The DEP Citizens Advisory Council wrote to members of the Senate Friday urging them to pass House Bill 343 (Miller-R-York) which would set standards for the construction and abandonment of private water wells. The Council has a diverse membership of 18 individuals appointed by the Governor, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
DEP Proposes Changes To Oil & Gas Program Enforcement Policy, Spill Reporting
PA Environment Digest


The Department of Environmental Protection published notice of draft technical guidance for public comment in the October 4 PA Bulletin changing the policy for identifying, tracking and resolving oil and gas violations and for coordinating immediate responses and final remediation of spills and releases of substances into soils. Comments are due on the proposed changes by November 3.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Senate Democratic Policy Committee Hearing On Fracking-Related Health Complaints
PA Environment Digest


The Senate Democratic Policy Committee Wednesday held a hearing in Wilkes-Barre on ways state government can improve how it tracks, monitors and responds to public health complaints related to gas drilling. The discussion was held at Kings College at the request of Sen. John Yudichak (D-Luzerne), Minority Chair of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee. It featured senate lawmakers and a panel of officials representing government, academic and environmental/health advocates.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Cuomo administration edited and delayed key fracking study
Capital New York
Scott Waldman

ALBANY—A federal water study commissioned by the Cuomo administration as it weighed a key decision on fracking was edited and delayed by state officials before it was published, a Capital review has found. The study, originally commissioned by the state in 2011, when the administration was reportedly considering approving fracking on a limited basis, was going to result in a number of politically inconvenient conclusions for Governor Andrew Cuomo, according to an early draft of the report by the U.S. Geological Survey obtained by Capital through a Freedom of Information Act request.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Government fracking consultation was a ‘sham’
Midhurst and Petworth Observer


ANTI-FRACKING campaigners have branded government consultation on its plans to change the trespass law so companies can drill under people’s land as ‘a sham’. The announcement was made by the department for energy and climate change on Friday. It said despite the overwhelming response to its consultation – more than 40,000 replies – it was going ahead with proposals to remove people’s rights to object to fracking beneath their properties.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Methane pollution from federal lands rising, oil boom to blame
Fuel Fix
Jennifer A. Diouhy

WASHINGTON — Methane emissions from oil and gas wells on federal lands and waters jumped 135 percent between 2008 and 2013, a new analysis shows, driven by a drilling boom in New Mexico and North Dakota that has outpaced the buildout of new pipelines and processing centers. The study, completed by Stratus Consulting for The Wilderness Society and the Center for American Progress, documented the uptick in methane being vented or burned as waste from wells on public lands and waters using data from the Interior Department’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
DEP to DePasquale: Problems are already addressed
Scranton Times-Tribune
Elizabeth Skrapits

WILKES-BARRE — State Auditor General Eugene DePasquale is outspoken in his belief that when it comes to dealing with water contamination issues, the state Department of Environmental Protection needs to get its act together. During a public hearing on tracking and reporting natural gas drilling-related health complaints in front of the state Senate Democratic Policy Committee at King’s College on Wednesday, Mr. DePasquale criticized DEP for what he said was its inability to efficiently respond to residents’ reporting of potential impacts from natural gas development.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Duke researchers explore potential dangers of fracking
Duke Chronicle
Neelesh Moorthy

With North Carolina's ban on fracking set to expire next year, Duke researchers are looking into the potential dangers of the technique.What do you think? Over the last several years, hydraulic fracturing—better known as fracking—has increased the potential to produce domestic oil and gas. The process uses high pressure water and horizontal drilling to break up shale beneath the ground and bring up natural gas. But Duke researchers have explored potential risks of the process, with their work becoming increasingly important as North Carolina holds public hearings on fracking and seeks to begin fracking tests in the fall. What do you think?   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
How California Can Kick Fossil Fuels by 2050
Next City
Rachel Dovey

From Berkeley in the ‘60s to Silicon Valley today, California has long been known for its blissful utopians. Stanford professor Mark Jacobson’s recent study — outlining how the state can become completely renewable by 2050 — could easily be dismissed as just another California dream. After all, with car-centric infrastructure, a lobby-powered Sacramento and oceans of oil hidden deep in the Monterey Shale, the Golden State’s nickname often seems far too literal.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
With the Boom in Oil and Gas, Pipelines Proliferate in the U.S.
Environment 360
Peter Moskowitz

The rise of U.S. oil and gas production has spurred a dramatic expansion of the nation's pipeline infrastructure. As the lines reach into new communities and affect more property owners, concerns over the environmental impacts are growing.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Testimony: Obsolete tests tainted shale analysis
Power Source
Don Hopey

State regulators did not consider available water chemistry test results and had limited knowledge of past spills and leaks at Range Resources’ Yeager Farm shale gas development site in Washington County before deciding the operation did not contaminate the nearby private water supply of Loren Kiskadden, according to testimony last week in the ongoing case before the state Environmental Hearing Board in Pittsburgh.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Fracking figures into WNC Senate race
Citizen-Times
Jon Ostendorff

WAYNESVILLE – A controversial natural gas extraction process that might never be used in Western North Carolina is becoming a big part of a mountain Senate race. Democrat Jane Hipps of Waynesville has blasted incumbent Republican Sen. Jim Davis of Franklin for his support of hydraulic fracturing, also called fracking.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Report: New York Governor’s Office Altered And Delayed Fracking Study
Climate Progress
Katie Valentine

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration edited and delayed a fracking study commissioned by the state, according to a review by Capital New York. The New York news outlet reported Monday that the Cuomo administration had altered a report on the natural gas extraction technique commonly referred to as fracking. The report was commissioned in 2011 and was “going to result in a number of politically inconvenient conclusions” for the governor. A comparison of the original draft of the report, which was put together by the U.S. Geological Survey, and the final version, showed that some of the original descriptions and mentions of fracking-related health and environmental risks were “played down or removed.”   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Climate change, Obama, and methane
The Hill
Robert W. Howarth

President Obama’s carbon plan announced this summer finally moves the United States to take much needed steps toward reducing emissions of carbon dioxide, but unfortunately the plan largely ignores the low-hanging fruit to slow the rate of global warming: reducing emissions of methane, another type of carbon. The president’s focus on carbon dioxide is perhaps no surprise, given the environmental community’s decades-long emphasis on this as the most important greenhouse gas. But rapid advancements in the scientific understanding of the role of methane as a driver of global warming strongly show the danger of tunnel vision on carbon dioxide.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
How Fracking Just Got Worse for Your Health
EcoWatch
Jennifer Sass

And, cumene isn’t the only health hazard associated with fracking. Diesel particulate matter, nitrogen oxides (NOx), road dust, BTEX chemicals (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene) are all potential pollutants associated with fracking that pose health risks. Benzene is also a known carcinogen listed by the Report on Carcinogens (you can search the RoC for chemicals linked to cancer here), VOCs and NOx contribute to the formation of regional ozone which causes smog and is very harmful to the respiratory system. Particulate matter can cause respiratory problems including coughing, airway inflammation and worsening of existing respiratory illnesses such as asthma and COPD, and premature death.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Gov. Cuomo’s Office Tilts Study to Downplay Fracking Risks
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

A federal study by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), commissioned by New York state to assess the impact of fracking on well water, was edited and delayed by state officials when they found some of its conclusions apparently not to their liking, according to Capital New York, which covers state politics.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Rob Astorino to tour gas fields amid fracking debate
New York Post
Fredric U. Dicker

Republican gubernatorial contender Rob Astorino, who has vowed to approve fracking in upstate New York state’s gas-rich Southern Tier, yesterday accepted an offer of a pre-election tour of the gas fields of Pennsylvania — and challenged Gov. Cuomo to do the same.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
City council works to reinstate fracking ban in Fort Collins
Collegian Central
Danny Bishop

The issue of hydraulic fracturing continues to cause legal tension between Fort Collins, the state of Colorado and the Colorado Oil and Gas Association. Fort Collins City Council recently voted to appeal a District Court decision that allowed fracking in Fort Collins and work to reinstate the fracking ban.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Fracking ban bill is badly flawed, environmental coalition says
CTV
Canadian Press

HALIFAX -- A coalition of environmental groups opposed to hydraulic fracturing in Nova Scotia says legislation that would ban the practice is seriously flawed. The group had initially applauded the province's Liberal government when it announced a renewed moratorium last month through amendments to the Petroleum Resources Act.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
British Farmers Fear Financial Loss From Fracking Beneath Their Land: Reports
Ria Novosti


MOSCOW, October 6 (RIA Novosti) – British farmers fear that hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, that is occurring beneath their land could bring them financial loss, as land values could fall and stores could stop buying produce grown above fracking sites, The Telegraph reported Monday. British farmers, who initially saw fracking as an opportunity to make money, are now "broadly concerned," Dr. Jonathan Scurlock, National Farmers Union (NFU) chief renewable energy and climate change adviser, said Monday, The Telegraph reported.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Colorado State University researchers study nanoparticles that could trace fracking chemicals and advance oil recovery
Collegian Central
Jessica Golden

Colorado State University researchers are studying the movement of underground nanoparticles that have the potential to reveal fracking chemicals in the ground and help find reservoirs of untapped oil. Assistant Professor in the Department of Design and Merchandising Vivian Li and Associate Professor in the Department of Geosciences William Sanford research the movement of these nanoparticles in an effort to follow the flow of fracking fluids.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Two most controversial groundwater issues – fracking, Kern Water Bank
The Fresno Bee
Mark Grossi

If you follow water lawsuits in the southern San Joaquin Valley, you will find the two biggest controversies in California’s groundwater world – hydraulic fracturing and the Kern Water Bank.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Anglican Church divests from fossil fuels, calls for fracking scrutiny in WA
ABC News
Jacob Kagi & Katrina Alarkon

The Anglican Diocese of Perth has decided to divest itself of fossil fuel investments over what it says is a responsibility to act on climate change. The diocese made the decision at its annual synod over the weekend and now plans to put funds into renewable energy investments.   [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
ExxonMobil Comes Clean On Fracking Risks — Not
Clean Technica
Tina Casey

For whatever reason, lately it looks like drilling companies have been stumbling all over each other in a rush to disclose fracking risks and other formerly secretive aspects of the drilling industry. ExxonMobil issued a major new report to its shareholders on September 30, Andarko and EOG hopped on the bandwagon with a financial risk commitment to their shareholders last Friday, and Baker Hughes earlier pledged to disclose the secret sauce in its fracking fluid.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
In Fracking's Wake: Vast Open Pits of Chemical Sludge - MULTIMEDIA
Inside Climate News
David Hasemyer & Zahra Hirji

Big Oil + Bad Air is an 18-month investigation by InsideClimate News and the Center for Public Integrity. The latest installment tackles a little-covered issue: air emissions from the waste that America's drilling boom has created.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Farmers fear fracking could spell financial ruin
Telgraph
Emily Gosden

Farmers fear they could face financial ruin from government plans to allow fracking beneath their land without compensation, the National Farmers' Union has warned. Ministers pushing for shale gas exploration cannot take the support of rural communities for granted and are turning farmers against the process by appearing to brush side their concerns, it warned.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
Western Australian council concerned about water contamination by fracking
Shale energy
Saleha Riaz

The Conservation Council of Western Australia has released a map produced by the WA Water Corporation revealing that gas fracking titles and acreage releases have been issued over a quarter of the state’s drinking water reserves. Conservation Council Director Piers Verstegen said “Gas fracking is one of the most toxic and polluting industries on the planet, and certainly not something we should be allowing anywhere near our precious drinking water reserves.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
How Oil & Gas Waste Became Exempt From Federal Regulation: A Timeline
InsideClimate News
Zahra Hirji and Paul Horn

In the small town of Nordheim, Texas, residents are trying to stop a commercial oil and gas waste facility proposed for a large plot of land less than a mile away. They worry that the Texas wind will carry toxic air emissions into the town and across the campus of the local school. The residents' effort is hampered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's decision in 1988 to classify most oil and gas waste as "non hazardous," even though it contains chemicals, including benzene, that are known to cause health problems. The industry lobbied hard for the non-hazardous classification, arguing that the cost of treating the waste as hazardous would be exorbitant.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
How Oil & Gas Waste Became Exempt From Federal Regulation: A Timeline
InsideClimate News
Zahra Hirji and Paul Horn

In the small town of Nordheim, Texas, residents are trying to stop a commercial oil and gas waste facility proposed for a large plot of land less than a mile away. They worry that the Texas wind will carry toxic air emissions into the town and across the campus of the local school. The residents' effort is hampered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's decision in 1988 to classify most oil and gas waste as "non hazardous," even though it contains chemicals, including benzene, that are known to cause health problems. The industry lobbied hard for the non-hazardous classification, arguing that the cost of treating the waste as hazardous would be exorbitant.  [Full Story]

Oct 6, 2014
U of I researcher informs supervisors about frac-sand impact
Decorah Newspapers
Sarah Strandberg

Scientists have known for centuries crystalline silica is a carcinogen, according to Dr. Peter Thorne. The head of the University of Iowa’s Department of Occupational and Environmental Health was in Decorah making a presentation at the Winneshiek County Board of Supervisors’ meeting last week. The University is currently conducting an Environmental Health Sciences Research Center (EHSRC) project on the impacts of proppant sand mining. Crystalline silica “proppant” sand is used to extract natural gas from deep shale deposits. Fissures are held open by the sand injected with fracking fluid. While there are currently no hydraulic fracturing operations in Iowa, mining operations are moving to the Upper Mississippi River Valley where frac-sand mines have “exploded,” Thorne said.  [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
Utica Boosts U.S. Natural Gas Production To Record Levels
Oil Price
Chris Pedersen

The Utica shale formation has consistently been overshadowed by the Marcellus shale formation, which lies above it. But it is time the Utica started receiving some real attention for the incredible growth that has taken place over the last two to three years.   [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
Energy Quote of the Day: 'Supply is not the Problem, We Need Good Infrastructure'
Energy Collective
Jared Anderson

The dramatic shift in US energy supply-demand dynamics over the past several years is impacting markets and physical commodity flows in what seems like unlimited ways, with misaligned infrastructure being one of the most pronounced. LNG import terminals retooled for liquefaction; millions of barrels of oil transported via rail; refineries configured to process heavy, sour imported crude overwhelmed by domestic light hydrocarbons and directional changes along many pipelines are just a few examples.  [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
Oil-field health studies continue but answers are still lacking
Denver Post
Nancy Lofholm

Dozens of studies have looked for a link between those problems and drilling. One of those studies, done partly in the Mobaldis' old neighborhood nearly five years ago, found enough emissions in the air to potentially cause illnesses. But, before that link could be strengthened by researchers at the Colorado School of Public Health, the oil and gas industry complained about the quality of the research. County commissioners dropped the study contract.   [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
What Could the West Virginia Plan to Frack Under the Ohio River Mean for Kentucky?
WFPL
Erica Peterson

West Virginia is accepting bids on a plan to allow hydraulic fracturing for natural gas (or “fracking”) beneath the Ohio River. The move would provide the state with much-needed revenue, but environmental and citizen groups are concerned about the possible contamination of drinking water for millions of people. Louisville is one of the communities downriver that uses the river for drinking water.   [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
A Fracking Good Letter
Scoop
Walter Brasch

The oil and gas industry has retreated from its entrenched position to have the public delete the “k” in “fracking,” and write it as “frac’ing” or “fracing.” Those who have been the strongest advocates for fracking scorned and mocked those who place the “k” in the word. The problem is that without the “k,” the word sounds like “frasing.” However, the first use of the word “fracking” can be traced to an oil and gas journal article in 1953.  [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
Fracking exploration permits over WA groundwater reserves concern Conservation Council
ABC News
Kathryn Diss

Conservationists say they are alarmed by the number of onshore gas exploration permits which have been granted over water reserves in Western Australia. The Conservation Council has obtained a Water Corporation map which reveals a quarter of WA's water reserves are now covered by exploration permits for unconventional gases.  [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
FERC Approves Methane Storage Project in Finger Lakes Region of New York
EcoWatch
Peter Mantius

Brushing aside warnings of dangerous geological risk, federal regulators say construction can start immediately on a methane gas storage project next to Seneca Lake that has galvanized opposition from wine and tourism businesses across the Finger Lakes in upstate New York.   [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
N.Y. governor's race turns on view of economy
The Journal News
Joseph Spector

ALBANY – Gov. Andrew Cuomo sees a New York economy on the rise. New York has gained 500,000 jobs since he took office in 2011, the unemployment rate is the lowest in five years and upstate unemployment had its sharpest one-year drop in state history earlier this year.   [Full Story]

Oct 5, 2014
Water is the new oil: How corporations took over a basic human right
Salon
Lindsay Abrams

When you talk about human rights, not to mention human necessities, there’s not much more fundamental than water. The United Nations has even put it in writing: it formally “recognizes the right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation as a human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights.” That’s the theory, at least. In practice? Well, on Monday, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes arrived at a different conclusion from that of the U.N., in a ruling on Detroit’s hotly contested practice of cutting off water access to tens of thousands of residents who can’t pay their bills. “It cannot be doubted that water is a necessary ingredient to sustaining life,” Rhodes conceded. Yet there is not, he continued, “an enforceable right to free and affordable water.” Water, in the eyes of the court, is apparently a luxury. While it’s shocking to watch a city deny the rights of its own citizens, that’s nothing compared to what could happen if private water companies are allowed to take over. In “The Price of Thirst: Global Water Inequality and the Coming Chaos,” Karen Piper details the litany of examples worldwide of this very thing happening. In a classic example of the shock doctrine, Piper argues, water shortages are being seen as a business opportunity for multinational corporations. Their mantra: “No money, no water.” By 2025, it’s predicted they’ll be serving 21 percent of the world’s population.  [Full Story]

Oct 4, 2014
Proposed 105-mile PennEast pipeline rattles residents
The Morning Call
Scott Kraus and Jacqueline Palochko

Ned and Linda Heindel moved into their stone farmhouse in Williams Township 47 years ago. They have no children, but over the decades the two college professors have lovingly acquired and preserved 128 acres of forest, bogs and meadows surrounding their Hexenkopf Road homestead. Those hilly acres are sacred to the Heindels and are home to wild azalea, vernal freshwater springs and even the occasional black bear. They include Hexenkopf Rock, a ridge of exposed Precambrian stone whose name means witch's head and is the subject of spooky local legend.  [Full Story]

Oct 4, 2014
A Fracking Good Letter
Daily Kos
Walter Brasch

The oil and gas industry has retreated from its entrenched position to have the public delete the “k” in “fracking,” and write it as “frac’ing” or “fracing.” Those who have been the strongest advocates for fracking scorned and mocked those who place the “k” in the word. The problem is that without the “k,” the word sounds like “frasing.” However, the first use of the word “fracking” can be traced to an oil and gas journal article in 1953. As hydraulic horizontal fracturing became a standard to extract gas and oil about 2008, anti-fracking activists began using the word—with the “k”—in advertising, social media, and public protest campaigns that slyly bordered on the obscene—“Frack off!” and “No Fracking Way!” The oil and gas industry, faced with being the brunt of a series of near-obscene jokes, dug in and demanded that “unconventional drilling” or just “horizontal fracturing” were the “proper” terms. But, if “fracking” had to be used in print, the preference was for “frac’ing” or “fracing.” Most dictionaries—including the Oxford English Dictionary and Merriam-Webster—use the word “fracking”–with the “k”—as the preferred and acceptable term. In September, the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC), a front group for the oil and gas industry became proactive with a series of newspaper, radio, TV, and YouTube ads. The ads, scheduled to run through the beginning of 2015, were revealed at the annual Shale Insight conference, sponsored by the MSC in Pittsburgh.   [Full Story]

Oct 4, 2014
The Most Ambitious Environmental Lawsuit Ever
NY Times
Nathaniel Rich

n Louisiana, the most common way to visualize the state’s existential crisis is through the metaphor of football fields. The formulation, repeated in nearly every local newspaper article about the subject, goes like this: Each hour, Louisiana loses about a football field’s worth of land. Each day, the state loses nearly the accumulated acreage of every football stadium in the N.F.L. Were this rate of land loss applied to New York, Central Park would disappear in a month. Manhattan would vanish within a year and a half. The last of Brooklyn would dissolve four years later. New Yorkers would notice this kind of land loss. The world would notice this kind of land loss. But the hemorrhaging of Louisiana’s coastal wetlands has gone largely unremarked upon beyond state borders. This is surprising, because the wetlands, apart from their unique ecological significance and astounding beauty, buffer the impact of hurricanes that threaten not just New Orleans but also the port of South Louisiana, the nation’s largest; just under 10 percent of the country’s oil reserves; a quarter of its natural-gas supply; a fifth of its oil-refining capacity; and the gateway to its internal waterway system.  [Full Story]

Oct 4, 2014
An Industry You’ve Never Heard Of Is Trying To Cut Over $1.8 Billion In Wasted Natural Gas
ThinkProgress
Ryan Koronowski

Can a little-known, fledgling industry make the oil and gas industry more efficient and a little less dangerous to the climate by tackling methane leakage? A new report offers a close look at the “methane mitigation industry.” The fracking boom has allowed natural gas to seriously threaten — and in many cases supplant — the dominance coal-fired power generation has held over America’s electric grid. Many people who care about climate change and air pollution have cheered this development because when burned, natural gas gives off less pollution, including carbon dioxide, than coal does. There are two problems with this narrative. The first is that burning more natural gas does not help the climate picture if it replaces low-carbon, renewable energy that would otherwise be deployed. The second is that methane, the principal component of natural gas, is 86 times better at trapping heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide is. And not all extracted methane arrives at its intended destination on the consumer end. A not-insignificant amount is emitted at the wellhead, or while being stored and distributed — seeping past inadequate valves, leaking out of pipelines. The natural gas system is the largest industrial source of methane emissions in the U.S., and those emissions are expected to grow. That’s bad news for a livable climate. So what can the industry do right now to stop it? The new report, prepared for the Environmental Defense Fund by Datu Research, takes a deep look at the “new and rapidly emerging methane mitigation industry.”  [Full Story]

Oct 4, 2014
Natural gas pipeline capacity seen as factor in rising energy costs
Taunton Gazette
Gerry Tuoti

As New England has become increasingly dependent on natural gas, pipeline capacity hasn’t kept pace, according to industry analysts. When the pipes aren’t big enough to carry enough gas to meet the demand, the price of energy can spike, as it did last winter.  [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Colchester County man blames natural gas storage development for his dry well
Nova News Now
Harry Sullivan

TC MEDIA - Living on his “paradise,” rural retirement property in Colchester County, John Veres says he could barely wait to greet each new day. Now, however, because of water issues he is experiencing for the first time in 32 years, Veres said it’s all he can do each morning just to crawl out of bed. “This was my dream home, my retirement home. I retired from the navy 32 years ago and this was my paradise,” Veres said Oct. 2, while discussing his concerns over problems he said he is having with Alton Natural Gas Storage (ANGS), a company that is planning to create underground storage caverns for natural gas.  [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Ebola outbreak stops ExxonMobil drilling in Liberia
Natural Gas Daily


The ebola outbreak has affected ExxonMobil’s oil and gas operations in West Africa, the company’s Chief Executive Rex Tillerson told a news conference in Houston on Thursday. The US supermajor has halted drilling in oil blocks offshore Liberia – the country worst affected by the spread of the disease – and has stopped all but essential travel to Nigeria, Reuters reported.   [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
2 Reasons China's Surging Natural Gas Industry Could Be Worse Than Burning Coal
The Motley Fool
Reuben Brewer

On the surface, China making a shift from coal to natural gas makes complete sense. The U.S Environmental Protection Agency explains why: "Compared to the average air emissions from coal-fired generation, natural gas produces half as much carbon dioxide, less than a third as much nitrogen oxides, and one percent as much sulfur oxides at the power plant." The benefits of shifting industrial customers to gas would be similar. (Source: SeaWiFS Project, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, and ORBIMAGE, via Wikimedia Commons) That sounds like a big win all around. Coal makes up around 70% of China's energy pie, providing cheap power to a growing nation. But the side effect that burning this dirty fossil fuel has had on the environment is, literally, suffocating. China is now the largest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world.  [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Poll: Voter Familiarity With Fracking
The Morning Call
MICHAEL RAMLET

Morning Consult’s energy poll finds that a majority of voters are familiar with fracking and believe it should be regulated by a government body. Further, a plurality of voters believe fracking is unsafe for the environment. This poll was conducted from September 21-23, 2014, among a national sample of 1,673 registered voters. The margin of error is plus or minus 2.4 percentage points. You can see the full results here.  [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Who Killed the Vote on Fracking and Squashed Democracy?
EcoWatch
Joel Dyer, Matt Cortina & Elizabeth Miller

At first glance, determining who to blame for the fact that Colorado voters will not get their chance to decide for themselves who controls oil and gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing in their neighborhoods seems simple enough. On Monday, Aug. 4, as the result of a political compromise with Colorado’s Democratic Governor, John Hickenlooper, U.S. Rep. Jared Polis (D-Boulder) agreed to withdraw his support for the citizen initiative process that could have placed two anti-drilling/fracking initiatives (Amendments 88 and 89) on the November ballot. The initiatives, which had each garnered well in excess of the 86,105 signatures needed to be placed on the ballot (provided the signatures held up), would have amended the state constitution to give more control over drilling and fracking to local communities and/or establish a 2,000-foot setback from occupied structures for oil and gas drilling operations.   [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
FERC Approves NY Methane Storage Project
DC Bureau
Peter Mantius

Brushing aside warnings of dangerous geological risk, federal regulators say construction can start immediately on a methane gas storage project next to Seneca Lake that has galvanized opposition from wine and tourism businesses across the Finger Lakes in upstate New York.   [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Why the oil majors are backing away from renewable energy
E & E Newswire
David Ferris and Nathanial Gronewold

Chevron Corp.'s new solar and geothermal business seemed to be having a great year. In January, after just one year in operation, it had established projects with returns of 15 to 20 percent and had plans to build several geothermal plants in Europe. Then Chevron changed its mind. In a series of transactions, it sold off the unit, as well as others that do smaller solar installations and energy efficiency upgrades, and canceled a pair of giant solar farms in Hawaii, according to reports from Bloomberg Businessweek. With that, the oil majors have beaten a near-final retreat from solar power.  [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Industry's Appalachian woes go beyond gas, EPA rules
E & E Newswire
Manuel Quiñones

Last week Alpha Natural Resources Inc., one of the largest coal mining companies in the United States, announced it was laying off roughly 250 workers. The company had telegraphed most of the cuts in previous weeks and said hundreds more could be on the horizon. Such announcements have become commonplace in the nation's coal-producing communities, particularly within the Central Appalachian Basin, which has felt the brunt of the fuel's U.S. downturn in recent years. Coal mining has shed more than 7,000 workers since mid-2011 in eastern Kentucky alone.   [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Fighting denial: All just a little bit of history repeating Opinion: Activists crow that they're chipping away at corporate support of climate science denial. But it's all happened before.
The Daily Climate


People who follow climate change issues closely know the story, and know the players: Activists, led by groups like Forecast the Facts and stoked with rage over industry-backed groups pushing climate denial, launch a successful pressure campaign to drive the industry donors away. We've been here before. In the late 1990's, the Global Climate Coalition catalyzed widespread resistance to action on climate change. This is the scenario playing out today, as titans of Silicon Valley part ways with the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC. Within a 24-hour period last month, Facebook, Google, and Yahoo all announced they would quit their memberships in the controversial group, which tees up model state-level legislation favoring a spectrum of libertarian/conservative causes.   [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Proposed Registry to Track, Respond to Fracking-Related Health Complaints
WESA NPR Pittsburgh
Kevin Gavin

In 2011 the Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission recommended a registry to collect health data from people living nearing fracking operations. Three years later that registry has yet to be created, and a state Senate panel says such a database is an important step toward tracking and responding to public health complaints related to gas drilling. State Sen. John Yudichak (D-Luzerne) says individual health studies are fine, but the state needs to develop data that covers all parts of the commonwealth.  [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Anadarko, EOG Strike Deal With New York AG on Fracking
Bloomberg
Sophia Pearson and Christie Smythe

Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (APC) and EOG Resources Inc. (EOG) agreed to disclose to investors the financial and environmental risks of fracking under an accord with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, as the state contemplates lifting a moratorium on gas drilling. The companies will provide publicly accessible information about the regulation and litigation risks on their operations, Schneiderman said in a statement today. The companies will release the information in filings with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission.   [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
Maryland sees little risk to water from fracking
Washington Post
Associated Press

HAGERSTOWN, Md. — Maryland’s environmental regulators released a report Friday suggesting there is little risk of drinking water contamination from hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in the far western part of the state.   [Full Story]

Oct 3, 2014
A.G.: Energy companies to disclose risks of fracking investment
Capital New York
Scott Waldman

ALBANY—Two energy companies will be required to disclose the financial risks of fracking to investors, under a deal with state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. Under the deal to be announced later Friday, according to the attorney general's office, Anadarko Petroleum Corp. and EOG Resources Inc. will provide investors with warnings about the financial risk posed by the environmental impacts of their fracking operations. They have agreed to acknowledge the potential cost litigation and regulation of fracking could have on investments.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Alaska platform fire raging
Upstream
Noah Brenner

The US Coast Guard is responding to a fire raging on a natural gas platform in the Cook Inlet off Alaska. All four people who were on the Baker platform near Nikiski were evacuated safely.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Open pits offer cheap disposal for fracking sludge, but health worries mount
Center for Public Integrity
David Hasemyer, Zahra Hirji

NORDHEIM, Texas – School Superintendent Kevin Wilson tugged at his oversized belt buckle and gestured toward a field less than a mile from Nordheim School, where 180 children attend kindergarten through 12th grade. A commercial waste facility that will receive millions of barrels of toxic sludge from oil and gas production for disposal in enormous open-air pits is taking shape there, and Wilson worries that the ever-present Texas wind will carry traces of dangerous chemicals, including benzene, to the school. “Many of these students live outside of where they could be exposed,” said Wilson, a contemplative man with a soft Texas accent. “But we are busing them to the school, putting them in the direct path of something that could be harmful to them. It makes you think: Are we doing what’s best for the students?”  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Major Drilling Services Company Will Now Disclose All Fracking Chemicals
ThinkProgress
KATIE VALENTINE

Drilling services company Baker Hughes will from now on disclose all the chemicals they use in fracking, under a new policy announced Tuesday. Baker Hughes, which is one of the world’s largest companies providing drilling and other services to oil companies, pledged Tuesday that it would disclose 100 percent of the chemical makeup in the fluid it uses for fracking, “without the use of any trade secret designations.” The company said in a statement that it hopes its decision to disclose its chemical mix will help instill more public trust in the fracking process.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
DEP chief resigns over porn emails
Philadelphia Inquirer


HARRISBURG - State Department of Environmental Protection Secretary E. Christopher Abruzzo resigned Thursday in the wake of revelations that he was among state officials who sent or received pornographic emails over state computers. In a letter to Gov. Corbett, Abruzzo said he has not been able to review the explicit messages he allegedly sent or received but said he accepted responsibility for "any lack of judgment" he may have exhibited. He also added: "It is my concern that these assertions have become a distraction from the great record of this administration." In a statement, Corbett said only that "Abruzzo made his decision based on the best interest of the important mission of the Department of Environmental Protection."   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
PUC rejects judges’ decision, orders hearings on Sunoco Logistics pipeline
NPR State Impact PA
KATIE COLANERI

The Public Utility Commission has ordered more hearings on Sunoco Logistics’ request to bypass local zoning to build pump and valve control stations along its 300-mile natural gas liquids pipeline. In a 4-1 vote Thursday, the PUC rejected a recommendation from its administrative law judges to dismiss the petition because the company is not a public utility. The commission argues Sunoco Logistics is the product of a merger between two pipeline companies that had public utility status since the 1930s.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Tensions mount between homeowners, ET Rover natural gas pipeline survey crews
The Ann Arbor News
Eric Dresden

GENESEE COUNTY, MI – As representatives from a proposed natural gas pipeline begin surveying properties in Genesee County, tensions have been mounting for some residents who don't want the crews on their land. Among the recent incidents stemming from the ET Rover pipeline, police said a man with a shotgun confronted a survey crew on his neighbor's property on Monday, while another couple said they have repeatedly refused to allow the workers on their land.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Poisoned Fracking Playgrounds a Threat to Texas Kids
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

The air at Texas playgrounds could be hazardous to children’s health. That’s what nonprofit environmental testing group ShaleTest, which tracks the impact of shale oil and gas extraction for communities which can’t afford such tests, found as part of its Project Playground: Cleaner Air for Active Kids funded by Patagonia. The group ran air quality tests at five recreational parks and playgrounds in the north Texas, located near natural gas processing plants in the Barnett shale fracking area. It found harmful chemicals, including carcinogens, at all five.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Cracks seen in fracking-disclosure report process
San Francisco Chronicle
David R. Baker

A recent California law that requires oil companies to disclose key details of fracking operations has so far failed to ensure that all the required information reaches the public. Under the law, an oil company that fracks a well in California must tell state regulators within 60 days the amount of water used and the chemicals involved. Fracking involves pumping pressurized water, sand and chemicals underground to crack rocks, and many environmentalists fear it could taint precious water supplies. Officials post the reports on a state website, accessible to anyone who wants to read them. Some oil companies, however, have submitted incomplete reports to the state. Others mistakenly assumed they could post the reports to a nationwide fracking information website until California regulators told them otherwise.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Study: More gas wells in area leads to more hospitalizations
Citizens Voice
ELIZABETH SKRAPITS

WILKES-BARRE — The more natural gas wells in an area, the more of its residents end up in the hospital. So indicate the results of an unreleased study that was revealed at a state Senate Democratic Policy Committee hearing at King’s College on Wednesday on the subject of tracking, reporting and acting on public health concerns related to natural gas drilling. State lawmakers believe there needs to be better collection and sharing of health data in Marcellus Shale drilling areas, and state Sen. John Yudichak, D-Plymouth Township, has sponsored a bill that would dedicate $3 million in drilling impact fees to the state Department of Health to conduct the needed research. However, there needs to be “consistent, constant communication” between the Department of Health and the state Department of Environmental Protection, which state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale says does not have the resources and technology to effectively do its job.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
President Obama’s Ode to Fracking
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

In a speech today at Northwestern University in the Chicago suburb of Evanston, President Obama addressed the economy, touching on job creation, immigration, health care and raising the minimum wage. He also spoke briefly about energy, reiterating the “all of the above” policy he’s previously expressed that has frustrated advocates of renewable energy and immediate action on climate change.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Oil shipment rules come under fire
Times Herald Record
James Walsh

Environmental groups have criticized proposed regulations for rail cars carrying volatile crude oil through the Hudson Valley as too little and too slow to address the potential dangers. Riverkeeper and Scenic Hudson issued joint comments Tuesday night to the U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, which is formulating new rules regulating shipments of products including Bakken crude oil. The criticisms include not requiring "the most protective braking improvements or speed restrictions," and not considering limits on the length of trains. Oil trains traversing the Hudson Valley regularly haul 100 or more tank cars holding as much as 30,000 gallons each  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
LNG boom fuels Australia export ambitions
Financial Times
Jamie Smyth

High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others using the link below, do not cut & paste the article. See our Ts&Cs and Copyright Policy for more detail. Email ftsales.support@ft.com to buy additional rights. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/2c4cfbe4-4481-11e4-ab0c-00144feabdc0.html#ixzz3EzRm28H8 The flame flickering on top of a gas flare tower on Curtis Island in Gladstone is a symbol of a rising power in the liquefied natural gas market as three huge coal seam gas plants prepare for switch on. In Asia, where governments are seeking cleaner energy sources to complement coal and oil, LNG is highly prized. For Australia, it has changed the country’s energy landscape.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Coast Guard responds to natural gas platform fire in Cook Inlet
KTVA
Hope Miller

ANCHORAGE – A fire at a natural gas drilling platform in Cook Inlet near Nikiski Thursday morning forced an evacuation with no reports of injuries or fuel spills, authorities say. Four people were on the Alaska Hilcorp-owned Baker platform when the fire was reported to the U.S. Coast Guard around 8:30 a.m., said Petty Officer 1st Class Shawn Eggert. All four were airlifted out and were uninjured.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
South Texas Drilling Country Saying No to Waste
The New York Times
JIM MALEWITZ

NORDHEIM, Tex. — Paul Baumann proudly listed his hometown’s features as he drove his Ford truck down its empty Main Street: “One grocery store, two bars, one cafe, one beauty salon and one shooting club.” He pointed to the local school that houses students from kindergarten through 12th grade — which recently underwent a major remodel thanks to a $3 million bond vote. But Mr. Baumann’s tone turned somber when he addressed what he and his neighbors are fighting to keep out: a 143-acre oil and gas waste plant that developers hope to build just outside of this village of about 300. “This is going to affect the whole area with the smell,” said Mr. Baumann, who retired from the DuPont chemical company and owns ranchland. The proposed facility would border Mr. Baumann’s hayfield and a rental property. “After they put in the pits, I won’t be able to rent it out,” he added. The proposed site — about half the size of Nordheim — would accept truckloads of solid waste from the surrounding Eagle Ford Shale and hold millions of gallons of toxic sludge from drilling and hydraulic fracturing.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
The sleeper issue of the 2016 Democratic primary
MSNBC
Alex Seitz-Wald

Fracking is quickly emerging as an under-the-radar issue likely to influence the Democratic presidential primary in 2016, inflaming passionate opposition among the party’s base. The use of hydraulic fracturing to extract oil and gas has created thousands of new jobs and drastically increased domestic energy production, but it has also raised major environmental and health concerns. Not unlike the issue of Common Core educational standards among conservatives, fracking touches a nerve with rank-and-file progressives, especially in rural areas, even as it gets less attention from cosmopolitan Democrats, who will likely never encounter a fracking well in their backyard.  [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Study links natural gas wells with hospital visits
Scranton Times-Tribune
Elizabeth Skrapits

WILKES-BARRE — The more natural gas wells in an area, the more of its residents end up in the hospital. So indicate the results of an unreleased study revealed at a state Senate Democratic Policy Committee hearing at King’s College on Wednesday on the subject of tracking, reporting and acting on public health concerns related to natural gas drilling.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Fracked Oil Bomb Trains at Center of Federal Rules Debate
EcoWatch
anastasia Pantsios

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has just closed comments on its proposed new rules for tanker cars carrying explosive fracked oil. And while environmental and citizen groups say they don’t go far enough in protecting communities from potential disaster, the oil industry wants many more years to comply.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
VIDEO - In Fracking's Wake: Vast Open Pits of Chemical Sludge
Inside Climate News
Eleanor Bell

'A lot of people are worried about the water, and about the smell, and of course what's going up into the air.' As oil and gas drilling spreads across the United States, scant attention has been paid to air emissions from the waste the boom has created. InsideClimate News reporters David Hasemyer and Zahra Hirji examine these emissions in the latest installment in an 18-month investigation, Big Oil & Bad Air on the Texas Prairie conducted by InsideClimate News and The Center for Public Integrity.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Ebberston Moor deadline extension is granted
Gazette & Herald
Hannah Bryan

CAMPAIGNERS against fracking are continuing to fight hard to ensure the controversial gas extraction process does not happen in Ryedale. Members of Frack Free Ryedale met last week to look at the latest planning applications and discuss the issues which could arise from these if fracking licenses are granted over Ryedale.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
GRAPHIC - Fracking's Waste Pit Emissions: The Big Unknown
InsideClimate News
Paul Horn and Zahra Hirji

As oil and gas drilling spreads across the United States, scant attention has been paid to air emissions from the waste the boom has created. InsideClimate News and The Center for Public Integrity examine these emissions in the latest installment in their 18-month investigation, Big Oil and Bad Air on the Texas Prairie. InsideClimate News reporters David Hasemyer and Zahra Hirji found that because of a 1988 exemption from federal hazardous-waste laws sought by the oil and gas industry, the waste is classified as non-hazardous.   [Full Story]

Oct 2, 2014
Dilemma in the Marcellus Shale: How to dispose of radioactive oil and gas waste?
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Anya Litvak

The driller, whom Mr. Ying declined to name, was trying to dispose of oil and gas waste at area landfills but the trucks kept tripping radiation alarms. Rejected trucks had to be sent back to well pads or taken out of state, both costly options. It was happening enough that it started nudging the company’s bottom line, Mr. Ying said.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Fracking Emissions Fall; Texas Still King of GHGs
Inside Climate News


Just like last year, Texas is king of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S., while Vermont remains the greenest state in terms of pollution that causes climate change. New U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program data released Tuesday show that nationwide, greenhouse gas emissions from industrial sources in 2013 rose 0.6 percent over 2012, an increase of about 20 million metric tons of greenhouse gases, totaling 3.18 billion metric tons overall.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Anti-Fracking Forces in Santa Barbara County Outspent 20-1 on Ballot Measure
AllGov California


Opponents of a measure on the November 4 ballot to rein in enhanced oil and gas extraction techniques, like fracking, in San Barbara County are outspending supporters 20-1, according to Keith Carls at KCOY.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
San Luis Obispo supervisors pass on new fracking regulations
Benito Link


Saying hydraulic fracturing isn't a threat in San Luis Obispo County, that county's Board of Supervisors unanimously agreed recently to not pursue new regulations that would ban the practice used by the oil and gas industry, according to a recent article in the Santa Maria Times.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Call for stricter controls over NSW fracking
SBS News
Greg Navarro

Opponents of coal seam gas exploration in Australia say there are a serious a lack of controls over how the industry operates.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Truth and Illusion in the Fracking Debate
JD Supra Business Advisor
Charles Sartain

And so it is from certain quarters in the hydraulic fracking debate who continue to insist, hysterically and despite the evidence, that the process is a threat to Civilization As We Know It. This post is a summary of several discussions. Read the articles themselves for details.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Fracking in wintry areas linked to high ozone pollution Study targets mountain basins with oil and gas developments and cold weather
Edmonton Journal
Margaret Munro

Emissions wafting out of oil and gas operations can trigger “extreme” ozone pollution events that rival those seen in congested cities such as Los Angeles, according to an international study. Extraordinary levels of ozone, which can exacerbate asthma and other respiratory problems, have been seen in rural areas of Utah and Wyoming where oil extraction and fracking have taken off.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Senators Wyden, Markey Press Administration to Ensure Public Safety in Fracking Rule
eNews Park Forest
Press Release

Washington, D.C.—(ENEWSPF)—October 1, 2014. U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Ed Markey, D- Mass., and 10 other senators yesterday pressed for greater transparency and strong safety standards while the administration considers a new rule for hydraulic fracturing methods on public lands, in a letter to the Office of Management and Budget today.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Mining for sand in fracking process holds risks for communities, study says
The Viewpoint
Neela Banerjee

WASHINGTON—As a domestic energy boom driven by hydraulic fracturing spreads, so could strip-mining for sand needed for the controversial production process, introducing risks to water, air, public health and property values, according to a report issued Thursday.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
US Set to Pass Saudi Arabia as World’s Largest Liquid Petroleum Producer
Vice News
Robert S. Eshelman

Sometime this month, the United States will likely overtake Saudi Arabia as the world's leading producer of liquid petroleum — a looming milestone that brings into sharp focus the seemingly contradictory objectives of the Obama Administration to address climate change, on one hand, while promoting an all-of-the-above approach to domestic energy production, on the other.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Well Water Contamination Possible After Drilling Mishap
West Virginia Public Radio
Glynis Board

Drilling for shale gas went wrong last week when operators accidentally drilled into one of their own wells that was engaged in production. The result is possibly contaminated drinking water from at least 12 homes. The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection issued citations to Antero Resources for breaching of their own wells. The incident occurred at Anteors five-well Primm Pad in Doddridge County, WV near West Union last week. The DEPs citation indicates that the rupture happened at a drilling depth of 641 feet, and that several water wells, an existing gas well, and an abandoned well in the area appear to be affected. Antero was given until October 1st to get the situation under control.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
McAuliffe energy plan for Va. makes debut
The Washington Post
Associated Press

RICHMOND, Va. — Gov. Terry McAuliffe released his energy blueprint for Virginia on Wednesday, stressing a familiar “all of the above” strategy that promotes greater use of renewable generation such as solar and wind, efficiency and traditional sources of energy. The thick document, which goes to the General Assembly, was filed with the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy. McAuliffe will formally debut the four-year Virginia Energy Plan at an Oct. 14 event on the state’s energy future.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Another Tennessee pipeline project on the horizon
The Times-Tribune
BRENDAN GIBBONS

Kinder Morgan is in early stages of another project to add capacity to its Tennessee Gas Pipeline, including work in Susquehanna and Bradford counties. The project, dubbed the Northeast Energy Direct Project, would deliver more gas from the Tennessee line to customers in New England, according to a request the Houston-based company submitted to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Sept. 15. After an open season bidding period in February and March, the Berkshire Gas Co., Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, Connecticut Natural Gas Corp., Liberty Utilities Corp., National Grid, Southern Connecticut Gas Corp. and three other unidentified gas utilities signed up, though Kinder Morgan is still seeking agreements with gas production companies to ship their product. Its early plan includes 135 miles of brand-new, 30-inch-diameter pipeline not to run along an existing right of way, according to a map the company submitted to FERC. It would start at the existing pipeline in southwestern Susquehanna County, run diagonally northeast across most of the county and cross into New York. From there, it would cut through Broome, Delaware, Ostego and Schoharie counties and meet the northern branch of the Tennessee line.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Move on fracking
News-Gazette
Opinion/Editorial

Supporters of "fracking" greeted recent news that the state had completed the rule-making process for this new means of energy exploration, with a combination of dismay and relief. It was dismay because it took the Illinois Department of Natural Resources nearly two years to write the rules. But there was relief as well because they finally were complete, presumably clearing the way for work to begin.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Q. and A.: Scott Moore on Moving China’s Water from South to North
The New York Times
CHRIS BUCKLEY

Q. What’s your general view of what will happen to the water situation in China, especially with strained supplies in the north? A. It’s a huge problem. But to be somewhat contrarian, I’m not that worried about water scarcity in China relative to some other regions. The economic cost imposed by water scarcity in northern China will be greater than in most regions of the world. But unlike parts of the Middle East, Africa and even South Asia, China has the money, it has the technical capacity and the state capacity to deal with these problems. That’s not to say that some people aren’t going to feel the pinch, and I think a lot of smallholder farmers are going to be forced off the land. There is certainly going to be pain as a result. And it is unclear, for example, whether China is going to be able to develop its unconventional gas reserves. Hydraulic fracking, the most common means of exploiting these reserves in the United States, is highly water-intensive, and in many regions in China it looks like there just isn’t enough water in local aquifers and waterways to support large-scale fracking as the technique is currently practiced elsewhere. But necessity is the mother of invention, and China has a pretty capable research and development infrastructure.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Fracking Emission Carcinogens Found in Denton Playgrounds
Dallas Observer
Emily Mathis

A new report published by ShaleTest, an independent environmental research agency in Denton, found levels of benzene in several Denton parks that exceed the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality's long-term exposure limitations. Benzene is a carcinogen found in cigarettes, gasoline and is a common byproduct of oil and gas drilling sites.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Bad Air Day: Around North Texas parks and playgrounds, children are breathing dangerous doses of toxic fumes from gas industry sites.
Fort Worth Weekly
Peter Gorman

On a crisp Saturday morning, Delga Park, just north of downtown Fort Worth, was beautiful. The deep blue sky was spattered with cumulus clouds, and birds flitted among shade trees at one end of the park, sandwiched between I-35W and the Trinity River. The grass was neatly trimmed and trash-free; the ball field sparkled. The only thing missing from the scene was anyone to enjoy it. Over the course of nearly two hours not a single parent with a stroller walked the footpath. No kids played ball or swung on the swings or used the slide. No one except this reporter was enjoying a cup of coffee at the picnic tables.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Commission sorts public comments on fracking for recommendations
Triangle Business Journal
Dawn Wallace

The North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission is sorting thousands of comments from the public about fracking, which will determine the board’s next move. The public comment window closed last night at midnight.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
SEE IT: Fracking water tanker wrecks historic Pennsylvania bridge
Daily News
Jason Molinet

The driver of a loaded 35-ton truck did not see Pollacks Mill Bridge's four-ton limit and failed make it halfway over the span when the roadway collapsed. Officials don't know if they can repair the 138-year-old truss bridge.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Jackson candidates drill down on fracking
Smoky Mountain News
Becky Johnson

The three Democratic challengers in the Jackson County commissioners race took the sitting commissioners to task for their inaction on fracking at a candidate forum last week. “If elected one of the first items on the agenda will be a resolution to oppose fracking in Jackson County and I will push for its adoption,” said Brian McMahan, a challenger for commissioner chairman. “Common sense tells you when you pump chemicals into the ground and contaminate well water that is not good for Jackson County.”  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Baker Hughes to start disclosing fracking chemicals
The Hill
Timothy Cama

Oilfield service provider Baker Hughes Inc. said it will start disclosing the chemicals it uses for every hydraulic fracturing operation. The Wednesday announcement outlines how the company will implement a policy it unveiled in April to provide more public detail about how it extracts gas and oil trapped underground. For every well it fracks starting Wednesday, Baker Hughes will put out a complete list of the chemicals and their maximum concentrations, it said.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
In FERC's Approval of Gas Exports, Climate Effects Get Glossed Over
InsideClimate News
Elizabeth Douglass

Environmental and community groups on Tuesday assailed federal approval of the Cove Point liquefied natural gas export project, arguing that regulators glossed over the climate change consequences. They vowed to challenge the decision through a regulatory appeal or in the courts.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Fracking Emission Carcinogens Found in Denton Playgrounds
Dallas Observer
Emily Mathis

A new report published by ShaleTest, an independent environmental research agency in Denton, found levels of benzene in several Denton parks that exceed the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality's long-term exposure limitations. Benzene is a carcinogen found in cigarettes, gasoline and is a common byproduct of oil and gas drilling sites. McKenna Park is one of the playgrounds where unsafe levels of the chemical were found. The playground is located next to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital of Denton, within a neighborhood, next to several churches and across the street from one of Denton's many Rayzor Ranch gas wells.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Why was a 2012 Health Canada Report, admitting significant health hazards and risks to groundwater and air from hydraulic fracturing, kept from the public?
Ernst v. EnCana Corporation


Potential Health Hazards from Shale Gas Exploration and Exploitation by Severine Louis, M.Sc., Toxicologist Project Manager- Risk Analysis and Marie-Odile Fouchecourt, Ph.D. Toxicologist Project Director-Risk Analysis, May 4, 2012, for Health Canada, 0/Ref.: RA 11-410, Y/Ref.: SO No. 4600000047  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Busy N.J. power plants less able to curb greenhouse gases
NorthJersey.com
James M O'Neill

Greenhouse gas emissions from power plants in New Jersey remained largely unchanged from 2012 to 2013 after several years of double-digit declines, according to data from the federal government.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
GOP Assemblywoman Malliotakis, Dem rival Melendez battle over hydrofracking, DREAM Act
Staten Island Advance
Tom Wrobleski

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. - GOP Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis and her Democratic rival, Marybeth Melendez, battled over hydrofracking, Ms. Malliotakis' past employment with Consolidated Edison and the DREAM Act during a debate in Brooklyn on Wednesday.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Gas industry nervously awaits outcome of governor’s race
State Impact PA
Marie Cusick

When members of Pennsylvania’s largest gas industry trade group got together for their annual conference last week they were a bit worried. Why? Anyone paying attention to voter polls or listening to the rhetoric coming out of Harrisburg knows there is the very real possibility of two major changes for the gas industry— a new Democrat in the governor’s mansion and a new tax on gas production.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Another Tennessee pipeline project on the horizon
Times-Tribune
Brendan Gibbons

Kinder Morgan is in early stages of another project to add capacity to its Tennessee Gas Pipeline, including work in Susquehanna and Bradford counties. The project, dubbed the Northeast Energy Direct Project, would deliver more gas from the Tennessee line to customers in New England, according to a request the Houston-based company submitted to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Sept. 15.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Cracks seen in fracking-disclosure report process
SF Gate
David R. Baker

A recent California law that requires oil companies to disclose key details of fracking operations has so far failed to ensure that all the required information reaches the public. Under the law, an oil company that fracks a well in California must tell state regulators within 60 days the amount of water used and the chemicals involved. Fracking involves pumping pressurized water, sand and chemicals underground to crack rocks, and many environmentalists fear it could taint precious water supplies.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Warring camps seem to agree: It's the economy, stupid
E&E Publishing
Jean Chemnick

The fight over global warming in Washington, D.C., has shifted from climate science to the dismal science. It's all economy, all the time. Senior administration officials have played up economics with coordinated talking points in recent weeks. U.S. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, and White House Office of Management and Budget chief Shaun Donovan have talked up President Obama's Climate Action Plan as a bulwark against the rising costs of extreme-weather threats and declining agricultural productivity.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Legume Used in Fracking Causes Problems for Investor, Farmers
The Wall Street Journal
Ryan Dezember

In the Race to Oil Patch Riches, One Wall Street Firm and Hundreds of Farmers Have Slipped on a Skinny Green Legume Known as Guar In the race to the new riches of the oil patch, one Wall Street firm has slipped on a skinny green legume. When the price of guar soared to record heights in 2012, investors took notice. Guar—a legume used to thicken products from toothpaste to peanut butter—is also a key ingredient in the rock-shattering hydraulic-fracturing process. With the U.S. shale-drilling boom in full swing, New York hedge fund Scopia Capital Management LLC paid $4 million for a 45% stake in the only U.S. facility capable of extracting the starchy part of the legume's seed that is ground up to make its valuable thickening powder. But things soured quickly after the 2012 deal, landing the processing facility in bankruptcy court while tens of millions of pounds of guar that farmers grew for it last year sits in silos. The guar debacle shows how investing in the shale boom—which took hold as drillers unlocked oil and gas reserves trapped deep in layers of rock known as shale—isn't without complexities and risks. The processing facility, West Texas Guar Inc., had a deal to sell guar powder to a drilling company and last year offered farmers big prices for the legume, used to thicken oil-drilling fluids.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Fracking prohibited in Fair Lawn for three years
NorthJersey.com
Tom Nobile

Fair Lawn - The borough has become the third Bergen County town to confront hydraulic fracking and its potential environmental consequences. On Sept. 23, the council unanimously adopted a resolution that prohibits fracking and the disposal of fracking waste in Fair Lawn for three years. In June, Hillsdale became the first Bergen County town to ban fracking. Paramus also voted to support statewide and national fracking bans in 2012.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Renewable Gas from Wastewater Treatment Plant Fueling UK Homes
Renewable Energy World
Louise Downing, Bloomberg

LONDON -- Extracting energy from “processed poo” to help power homes in the Birmingham area is what Severn Trent Plc, Britain’s second-largest publicly traded water company, is now doing to generate a cost-saving renewable gas.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Senators ask how to address fracking-related health issues
Times Leader
Jon O'Connell

Lawmakers believe industry caught state health department by surprise During a senate hearing Wednesday on the King’s College campus, DePasquale asked why state agencies are not so efficient in tracking and reporting data on natural gas production as the courier who takes flowers to his mother. The Pennsylvania Health Department has been under scrutiny since reports surfaced in June that department employees had been instructed in a memo to forward inquiries referencing gas production in the Marcellus Shale to a bureau within the department.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
WEST VIRGINIA IS SELLING OUT TO FRACKING COMPANIES
Ring of Fire radio
Joshua De Leon

West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray decided that he’s ready to let fracking companies ravage the landscape and drill beneath 14 miles of the Ohio River, reported the Akron Beacon Journal. Several environmental groups are now urging Ray to reconsider citing past incidents and future projections.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
'Virtual pipeline' to deliver natural gas connection to Orbost, Lakes Entrance
abc.net.au


Two Gippsland towns will be connected to natural gas, as part of a long-awaited pre-election promise. Before the last election, the Government promised to connect 14 priority towns to natural gas, including Orbost and Lakes Entrance. Many of the towns on the list have had a long wait for news of a connection, because a traditional gas pipeline would not work. Instead, the Deputy Premier Peter Ryan says they are using a 'virtual pipeline'.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
How politics complicated Cuomo’s energy plan
Capital New York
David Giambusso

It can seem, at times, like the Cuomo administration is doing battle with itself as it seeks to move New York State toward reliance on cleaner sources of energy. In April, the Cuomo administration’s Public Service Commission rolled out its “Reforming Energy Vision,” promising to ramp up renewable energy, smart grid technology, microgrids and energy storage. The administration dedicated $1 billion for solar investment. And it established a $1 billion Green Bank to finance renewable energy projects. These initiatives were among the most ambitious in the country. But even as Governor Andrew Cuomo was touting the proposed reform of the state’s power grid, his administration shepherded deals to rescue two aging coal-fired plants from the scrap heap and turn them into gas-burning facilities, despite the fact that utility companies said they weren’t needed at all.  [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
State makes case on oil train shipments
Times Herald Record
James Walsh

New York state on Tuesday submitted its concerns about oil trains that traverse the Hudson Valley to a federal agency developing rules for the transport of hazardous materials including volatile Bakken crude oil. Emergency orders were issued in May by the U.S. Department of Transportation to railroads hauling the Bakken crude to immediately notify state emergency officials of the shipments. Shippers were also asked to stop using old DOT-111 tank cars, which have a history of rupturing and exploding in derailments. The cars were originally designed to carry nonhazardous materials such as corn syrup and fruit juice. New York's suggestions include enhanced braking systems for oil trains, speed controls for trains hauling hazardous cargo and degasifying crude oil before shipment to reduce its volatility,   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Fracking Companies Fight EPA's Proposed Chemical Disclosure Rules
Scientific American
Rebecca Trager

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is considering introducing new regulations that would require companies to disclose the composition of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing (fracking), but the Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Affiliates (SOCMA) is warning that such a rule could jeopardise the trade secrets of its members, which include small businesses that manufacture chemicals used in oil and gas exploration.   [Full Story]

Oct 1, 2014
Moyne mayor says fracking not just a 'fringe group' issue
The Standard
Anthony Brady

THE fight to put an end to coal seam gas exploration and extraction in Victoria is being led at a local level. Moyne Shire councillors will take a strongly-worded motion to the Municipal Association of Victoria state congress this month. The motion will call on delegates to oppose coal seam gas exploration and extraction across the state. Mayor James Purcell generated the motion, drawing unanimous support from councillors at their monthly meeting.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Who picks up pieces if fracking causes damage?’, asks CLA
SmallHolder


The CLA said the consultation response from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) on fracking fails to properly tackle the issue of long-term liability leaving landowners at risk long after drilling has stopped. The organisation said DECC’s response to the Underground Drilling Access Consultation makes clear that the Government plans to progress with changes that allow the shale gas and geothermal industries to drill deep underneath property without the owner’s permission, but it does not make clear who is liable if things go wrong.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
N.C. Mining and Energy Commission taking last public comments about fracking
Triangle Business Journal
Dawn Wallace

The North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission will close the public comment period regarding fracking at midnight, and expects to sift through thousands of comments in the coming days. By the time the public comment period ends, the commission expects to have around 50,000 comments to review, some of which have resonated with some of the commissioners.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Steady Oil Prices Prompt More Fracking Activity In Ohio
WOSU
Tom borgerding

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources says it has permitted 17 more horizontally-fracked wells in five eastern counties. The state permits allow for more oil and gas development in an area known as the Utica shale. Youngstown State University geologist Jeffrey Dick says oil and gas reserves in the region are plentiful. He expects drilling activity in Ohio to last decades. “Given the amount of reserves that are down there and the acreage that’s left to be drilled, I think you’re easily looking at 20 to 40 years easily,” says Dick.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Nova Scotia introduces bill to ban fracking
Financial Post
Canadian Press

The Nova Scotia government introduced legislation Tuesday that would place an indefinite moratorium on high-volume hydraulic fracturing for onshore oil and gas from shale deposits. But the legislation would provide an exemption for fracking used for testing and research purposes. Energy Minister Andrew Younger says the amendments to the Petroleum Resources Act will not provide a loophole for the shale gas industry.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
State halts production at Antero pad in Doddridge
Daily Mail


WEST UNION, W.Va. (AP) — Production at an Antero Resources well pad in Doddridge County has been halted after a drill collided with a well. The Department of Environmental Protection issued a cease operations order to Antero following the accident last week at the Primm Pad near West Union. The department’s Office of Oil and Gas also issued a notice of violation and a pollution violation. The drill collided with the well as Antero was drilling another well. The collision caused methane to be released from the existing well, DEP representatives told media outlets.   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Feds clear Maryland natural gas export proposal
The Hill
Tomothy Cama

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on Monday approved a proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal in Maryland, the first one on the East Coast. Dominion Resources Inc. will be allowed to liquefy and export up to 5.75 million metric tons of natural gas per year from its existing Cove Point compressor station on the Chesapeake Bay.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Harrison Co. woman blames fracking for damages
West Virginia Record
KELLY HOLLERAN

CHARLESTON – A Harrison County resident has filed suit against the oil and gas companies that she alleges harmed her land when they drilled horizontally into it in an attempt to retrieve the resource.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Nova Scotia Moves to Continue Fracking Moratorium
NGI
Charlie Passut

The Liberal government of Nova Scotia followed through on a promise to continue a moratorium on high-volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF) on Tuesday, after introducing an amendment to the province's Petroleum Resources Act. "We've heard from many Nova Scotians that we are not yet ready for HVHF to be a part of developing our onshore oil and gas resources in shale," Energy Minister Andrew Younger said in a statement. "This legislation provides assurance to Nova Scotians that this technique will not be permitted without a public, open and transparent debate in the legislature."   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Robert McCartney: Nation's embrace of fracking ignores environmental risks
Morning Call
Opinion Robert McCartney

rginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe's attitude toward natural-gas fracking seems to depend on whether it occurs somewhere that would be politically inconvenient for him. McAuliffe, a Democrat, said recently he's determined to prevent the controversial drilling method from intruding on the rugged Appalachian beauty of the George Washington National Forest, where opposition has been strong. His spokesman said the governor also thinks the potential threat to water supplies creates "a high hurdle" for fracking to win approval at proposed drilling sites east of Fredericksburg and within a two-hour drive from downtown Washington.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Frac Sand Rush Threatens American Towns, Advocates Warn
Huffington Post
Lynne Peeples

Victoria Trinko hasn't opened the windows of her Wisconsin home in two years -- for fear of the dust clouds billowing from a frac sand mine a half-mile away. "This blowing of silica sand has not abated since the inception of the mine in 2011," Trinko, a farmer and the town clerk for Cooks Valley, Wisconsin, said during a media call on Thursday highlighting an industry proliferating alongside horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Frac sand is an essential ingredient in the process of natural gas drilling. Trinko is among residents, advocates and scientists warning of risks posed by the frac sand boom -- from heavy truck traffic and sleep-stymying lights and noise. At least one truck hauling silica sand travels a road by Trinko's home every three minutes. When HuffPost spoke with Trinko in 2012, she had just been diagnosed with asthma -- and her doctor suggested the condition was pollution-related.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Oil, Rail Industries Want 7 Years To Fix Risky Crude Oil Tank Cars
AP via Huffington Post
Joan Lowy

WASHINGTON (AP) — The oil and railroad industries are urging federal regulators to allow them as long as seven years to upgrade existing tank cars that transport highly volatile crude oil, a top oil industry official said Tuesday. The cars have ruptured and spilled oil during collisions, leading to intense fires. Jack Gerard, president of the American Petroleum Institute, told reporters that his group and the Association of American Railroads are jointly asking the Transportation Department for six months to 12 months for rail tank car manufacturers to gear up to overhaul tens of thousands of cars and another three years to retrofit older cars.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Senate Dems call for 'strongest possible' fracking regs
The Hill
Laura Barron-Lopez

A group of Senate Democrats called for the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on Friday to issue the "strongest possible" safety standards for fracking operations on public lands. The Interior Department recently sent its rule on fracking, a horizontal drilling method for oil and gas that pumps chemicals and water into the ground to break up deposits, to the OMB for final review.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Mamakating fracking ban applies to byproducts, too
Times Herald Record
Steve Israel

There may not be any natural gas worth drilling beneath the Town of Mamakating in eastern Sullivan County — if there's any gas located there at all. And Gov. Andrew Cuomo may have put the natural-gas extraction method of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on indefinite hold while the state studies its impact on health — and waits for the November election to be over. But that didn't stop Mamakating from banning fracking — and related fracking activities — at a Town Board meeting a few weeks ago. That makes it the sixth Sullivan County town — along with Tusten, Lumberland, Bethel, Highland and Forestburgh — to do so.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Corbett's Pa.: Leaders from other states come here to see how bad it smells
Philadelphia Inquirer
Editorial

This is a new one: Activists in New York are pleading with their leaders to cross the border to see what we've accomplished under (mostly) Gov. Corbett. They also want the visitors to smell it. ALBANY – Opponents of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas are calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to make good on a promise to visit fracking sites in other states, sending him a letter last week urging him to travel to Pennsylvania.   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
MARCHING ON: A Q&A WITH JOSH FOX
City & State
Jon Lentz

C&S: You just protested outside a speech by President Obama. JF: We’re trying to get the attention of Cuomo and Clinton and Obama and our Democratic leadership, who thus far is saying great things about climate, but they’re not paying attention to the science on fracking and the science on methane leakage. This is a disastrous policy. So these rallies are calling on President Obama to do something that he’s called upon us to do, which is change and act. The grassroots is saying to President Obama, “You must act on fracking, you must act on climate change, and the only way you can have a coherent policy on the climate is to make sure that you’re not endorsing, promoting or spreading fracking.” We can run our whole world and our country on renewables. That is the only way to counter climate change, the only way to truly reduce all greenhouse gases. Carbon, of course, is most important greenhouse gas. Methane, however, is the second-most important greenhouse gas. The policy currently is to switch from coal to gas en masse—that’s a disastrous policy when it comes to talking about the climate.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Oil-by-Rail Safety Rule Seen Adding Costs: Railroads, API
Bloomberg
Jim Snyder

Proposed federal rules to make hauling crude oil by rail safer and avoid fiery wrecks would drive up costs and put the U.S. energy revival at risk, the head of an oil industry trade group said today. The American Petroleum Institute joined by the Association of American Railroads today proposed keeping older tank cars, which investigators say are vulnerable to puncture, in service for twice as long as envisioned by regulators drafting rules for carrying flammable liquids like oil on trains. The Transportation Department proposal to phase out older cars known as DOT-111s in two years is “not feasible,” said Jack Gerard, executive director of the Washington-based API, which represents companies including Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and Chevron Corp. (CVX)  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Evacuation route eyed for Cove Point gas plant
The Baltimore Sun
Timothy B. Wheeler

The energy company Dominion said Tuesday that it is exploring developing an alternate evacuation route for some residentialneighbors of its proposed Cove Point liquefied natural gas plant, prompting opponents to question anew assertions by the company and federal regulators that the facility poses no significant safety or environmental risks.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Fracking Emissions Fall; Texas Still King of GHGs
Climate Central
Bobby Magill

Just like last year, Texas is king of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S., while Vermont remains the greenest state in terms of pollution that causes climate change. New U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program data released Tuesday show that nationwide, greenhouse gas emissions from industrial sources in 2013 rose 0.6 percent over 2012, an increase of about 20 million metric tons of greenhouse gases, totaling 3.18 billion metric tons overall.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
German Anti-Fracking Campaigners Petition to Outlaw Technology
Bloomberg
Stefan Nicola

German groups campaigning against hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for natural gas handed a petition of 660,000 signatures to Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks seeking to outlaw use of the technology. “There are no good reasons for fracking but large risks for the environment and people’s health,” Ann-Kathrin Schneider of environmental group BUND said today in a statement as the petition was passed to Hendricks in Berlin. Campaigners are seeking changes to the federal mining law.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Corbett's Pa.: Leaders from other states come here to see how bad it smells
Philly.com


This is new one: Activists in New York are pleading with their leaders to cross the border to see what we've accomplished under (mostly) Gov. Corbett. They also want the visitors to smell it. ALBANY – Opponents of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas are calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to make good on a promise to visit fracking sites in other states, sending him a letter last week urging him to travel to Pennsylvania.   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Democrats to Obama: Get tough on oil companies drilling on public land
Fuel Fix
Jennifer Dloughy

WASHINGTON — A dozen Senate Democrats on Tuesday implored the Obama administration to impose tough new rules for oil companies drilling on public lands across the United States. At issue is the Interior Department’s proposed rule to tighten standards for wells on federal and Indian lands, including new mandates for the hydraulic fracturing process used to coax oil and gas out of dense rock formations. “We urge you to issue the strongest possible safeguards to ensure that public health, safety and our environment are protected,” said Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., and 11 of his colleagues, in a letter to Office of Management and Budget Director Shaun Donovan. They called it “critical that the final rule for hydraulic fracturing on public lands offers stringent protections for the safety of workers, our water, air, lands and public health.”  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Fracking companies in UK allowed to drill without public consent
Hydrogen Fuel News


The United Kingdom plans to grant underground access to gas and oil companies. In spite of public opposition, it is the intention of the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to allow fracking drilling to occur under people’s land without their consent, which would give companies permission to drill at depths of 300 meters or lower under private land, without them having to ask for the right to access the area. Nearly 100% of respondents objected the proposal.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Pa. Official Admits Errors In Investigation Of Whether Fracking Waste Spoiled Drinking Water
Climate Progress
Emily Atkin

A Pennsylvania official has admitted that he may have used faulty information to determine that fracking waste was not poisoning the drinking water supply at a man’s property in Washington County, according to a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette report. During his sworn testimony at a trial before the Pennsylvania Environmental Hearing Board, Department of Environmental Protection water quality specialist Vincent Yantko said that his 2011 investigation of landowner Loren Kiskadden’s contaminated drinking water “did not follow its regulations to determine whether [chemical] leaks had occurred” at a nearby fracking site, the Post reported. Kiskadden is one of three landowners who say they have experienced health problems due to water pollution from the waste pit at the Yeager drilling site, owned by Range Resources Corporation.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Proposed Fracking Rules in North Carolina Put People, Water, Wildlife at Risk
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

RALEIGH, N.C.— In response to proposed rules for oil and gas extraction in North Carolina, the Center for Biological Diversity today filed comments that call for stricter regulations to protect people, the state’s waterways and imperiled species from proposed gas fracking. According to the comments, the draft rules do not provide sufficient protections for habitat and water resources and fail to ensure that the state will protect endangered species during gas operations. “These rules allow fracking adjacent to extremely sensitive areas, including streams and wetlands,” said Jared Margolis, an attorney with the Center who focuses on the impacts of energy development on endangered species. “Fracking under these rules would pose an immediate threat to several North Carolina endangered species, including several species of freshwater mussels — animals like the Appalachian elktoe and Carolina heelsplitter that would be at risk from habitat fragmentation, reduced stream flows, and pollution caused by fracking.” The proposed rules require a setback of gas wells and waste pits from surface waters of only 200 feet. Given that fractures have been documented to extend as much as 2,000 feet, this buffer would do little to ensure that the state’s waters are not polluted by toxic fracking fluids or gas. Without greater buffers, the draft rules pose a clear hazard to North Carolina’s waterways and the many species that depend on them, such as the eastern hellbender salamanders, which were petitioned for Endangered Species Act protection by the Center in 2010.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
N.S. introduces legislation for indefinite moratorium on fracking
CTVNews.ca


HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia is moving ahead with legislation that would ban high-volume hydraulic fracturing for onshore oil and gas, but the proposed law also includes an exemption that would allow fracking for testing and research purposes. Energy Minister Andrew Younger insists the exemption in the Petroleum Resources Act does not provide a loophole for the shale gas industry. "Anybody could come to the door and ask for whatever they want," Younger said. "What this allows is for cabinet to consider a research project only."   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Ohio activists picket Kasich, Christie at Akron fund-raising dinner
Ohio.com
Bob Downing

Statement from protestors at Monday appearance by Ohio Gov. John Kasich and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in Fairlawn, an Akron suburb: Akron, Ohio – Governor Kasich faced protesters today as he attended today’s Summit County GOP fundraising dinner, featuring a keynote speech from Governor Chris Christie. Both Governor Kasich and Governor Christie have opposed efforts to enact a ban on toxic, radioactive fracking waste dumping in their respective states, a move that has upset many of those concerned that this puts profit motives of oil and gas interests above the health and well being of residents, drinking water and the environment. Food & Water Watch, the Network for Oil and Gas Accountability and Protection (NEOGAP) and FaCT (Faith Communities Together for fracking awareness) backed the protest.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Exxon Fracking Report Responds to Shareholders
AP via ABC News
Jonathan Fahey

Exxon Mobil issued a report Tuesday that acknowledges the environmental risks of hydraulic fracturing but also defends the practice as being better for the environment than other types of energy production and generation. Under pressure from the corporate responsibility group As You Sow, as well as New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer and other shareholders, Exxon agreed earlier this year to reveal more about how it manages the risks involved with the drilling technique, known as fracking. The report acknowledges that drilling wells and producing oil and gas from shale formations and other so-called unconventional sources do carry risks, including the possibility of water contamination and leaks of natural gas into the atmosphere that contribute to climate change.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Denton Sued over Fracking Moratorium
nbcdfw.com


A group of mineral royalty owners has sued the city of Denton over its temporary ban on hydraulic fracturing, claiming the ban violates property rights. City leaders halted fracking as they consider making their city the first in the state to permanently ban the practice.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Feds Approve Cove Point Fracked Gas Export Facility
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Despite ongoing opposition from area residents, the Federal Energy Regulation Commission (FERC) has approved the conversion of the Dominion Cove Point liquified natural gas (LNG) facility in southern Maryland from an import to an export facility. The decision also authorizes the installation of additional compression at Dominion’s Pleasant Valley Compressor Station and related facilities in Northern Virginia.   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Environmental fines levied on NFG for pipeline work
Buffalo News
David Robinson

Environmental regulators in Pennsylvania have fined National Fuel Gas Co. $250,000 for more than a dozen violations that took place during a seven-month period while the Amherst energy company was building a pipeline in the Marcellus Shale region in the central part of the state. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection levied the fine against National Fuel’s pipeline business for a series of violations of the state’s Clean Streams Law and other regulations during the construction of its Trout Run Gathering System across five municipalities in Lycoming County.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
EnLink Midstream purchases Gulf Coast pipeline systems
ohio.com
Bob Downing

DALLAS,September 29, 2014 — The EnLink Midstream companies, EnLink Midstream Partners, LP (NYSE:ENLK) (the Partnership) and EnLink Midstream, LLC (NYSE:ENLC) (the General Partner) (together “EnLink”), today announced that a subsidiary of the Partnership has signed a definitive agreement with Chevron Pipe Line Company and Chevron Midstream Pipelines LLC to acquire Gulf Coast natural gas pipeline assets including the Bridgeline system (“the natural gas assets”) predominantly located in Southern Louisiana for $235 million, subject to certain adjustments.   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Russia-China new gas pipeline draws near
World Bulletin


The proposed Altai natural gas pipeline project could ease the effects of western sanctions on the Russian economy, while China could gain from cheaper gas prices to meet its energy demand, experts said. The Altai gas pipeline has been the subject of intergovernmental talks between Russia and China since 2006. When the two countries could not agree on the price of gas in 2008, the project was indefinitely postponed. However, when the $400 billion agreement for the 'Power of Siberia' gas pipeline project was signed between Russia and China in May 2014, the Altai project came back onto the agenda once again and an agreement is expected to be signed this November.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
New player joins European gas pipeline consortium
UPI
Daniel J. Graeber

BAAR, Switzerland, Sept. 30 (UPI) -- Spanish energy company Enagas said Tuesday it signed up as a partner for the Trans Adriatic Pipeline for European natural gas needs, project developers said. The TAP project consortium said Enagas signed on for a 16 percent share, bringing the number of consortium members to six.   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
N.H. Energy Summit takeaway: expect natural gas spikes again this winter
NHBR
Bob Sanders

Be afraid, be very afraid, when it comes to spot market energy prices this winter. Last fall, futures contracts for peak electricity for January 2014 were $95 to $100 per megawatt-hour, said Taff Tschamler, senior vice president of business development at North American Power, an alternative electricity provider for some 35,000 New Hampshire residents and businesses. This fall, Tschamler said, such contracts have been trading between $170 and $190 per mWh.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Delaware official: Don't vote for me; I'm fighting the pipeline
NJ.com
Rick Epstein

Township Committeewoman Kristin McCarthy does not want to be re-elected; she wants to devote all her energy to fighting the PennEast natural-gas pipeline. This announcement was made in a letter to the editor of the Hunterdon County Democrat, which was emailed this morning. It comes the morning after a Township Committee meeting in the township school gym in which residents posed questions to PennEast representatives and expressed frustration and anger about its plan to run the pipeline across the township. Having served nine years on the committee, McCarthy had been seeking another term in the November election. "Unfortunately, recent events have caused me to reconsider. In August, PennEast LLC announced plans to build a 107-mile pipeline that will cut right through the heart of Delaware Township – through our beautiful and preserved farms and woodlands, through our wetlands and fragile ecosystems, through our historic homesteads and farms, and destroying our dense forest lands.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
The Explosive Debate Over A New Natural Gas Pipeline Through The Northeast
Climate Progress
Katie Valentine

New York resident Bruce Shenker didn’t used to be concerned about the three underground natural gas pipelines running through his property. He’s grown to appreciate the path created by their construction as a running and cross-country skiing route, and besides, two of them were there before he moved in, a fixture of the landscape just like the trees and eight-acre field. But after learning about Kinder Morgan’s Northeast Energy Direct, a natural gas pipeline that’s proposed to run through his land, Shenker started getting worried. The pipeline would be under more pressure than the ones already running through his land and would carry more gas — 800 million to 2.2 billion cubic feet per day — prompting concern about explosions.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Easements Made Easier: Building Pipelines with the Power of Eminent Domain Under the Natural Gas Act
JDSupra
Richard Herold

Any person or entity seeking to construct a natural gas pipeline and successful in obtaining a certificate of convenience and necessity from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission may exercise the power of eminent domain to obtain easements across private property when those easements are necessary and cannot be obtained consensually (by contract) from the landowners. Columbia Gas Transmission, L.L.C. v. 76 Acres More or Less, 2014 WL 2960836 (D. Md. June 27, 2014). the Columbia Gas Court recently held that (1) the property’s legal description need not be attached to sufficiently identify the property to be condemned, and (2) even in the absence of a federal condemnation statute authorizing immediate possession of the property, the condemning plaintiff may obtain an order to take immediate possession of the property since it would be wasteful and inefficient to skip over one or more parcels in the construction process – only if the condemning plaintiff is capable of satisfying the requirements for preliminary injunctive relief under Fed.R.Civ.P. 65, including posting a bond sufficient to cover the landowners’ costs and damages if it is determined that the landowner was wrongfully enjoined.   [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
PennEast wants to build pipeline in 2017; Delaware Township promises a fight
NJ.com
Rick Epstein

The PennEast Pipeline Co. would like to start construction in 2017, but the Delaware Township Committee has promised a fight to prevent it. The anti-pipeline resolution was passed at 11 p.m. yesterday after a long meeting in the township school’s gym attended by an estimated 400 residents. Many lined up at a microphone for their turn to question PennEast representatives, and for the chance to express fear, outrage or suspicion. The spectators applauded their fellows when they felt a telling blow had been struck and they jeered the PennEast panelists' responses.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Feds let states decide on pipeline expansion
Burlington Free Press
Dan D'Ambrosio

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has deferred to state regulatory agencies in Vermont and New York to decide whether the Vermont Gas expansion of its natural gas pipeline should be approved. Vermont Gas Spokesman Steve Wark said on Tuesday that the commission's decision streamlines the approval process for Phase 2, which would extend gas service from Middlebury to the International Paper plant in Ticonderoga, N.Y.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Upper Delaware one of 10 'special places'
Trout Unlimited
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Trout Unlimited is featuring the Upper Delaware River watershed in a new report highlighting outstanding public fishing and hunting areas in the Central Appalachian region that are at risk from shale gas drilling and hydrofracking. The organization’s 10 Special Places report focuses on areas that are rich in fish, game and natural beauty, and that have for generations provided abundant opportunities for hunters and anglers. It covers threats to the specific regions and offers recommendations for the best approaches sportsmen and women can use to protect these areas from potential risks.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
San Benito County Divided Over Fracking Measure On November Ballot
CBS SF Bay Area


HOLLISTER (KPIX 5) — Voters in San Benito County will become the first in California to decide on a measure about fracking in November. Measure J would ban the practice, and that vote has a county divided.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Energy issues seen as unifying force in North America
The Dallas Morning News
ALFREDO CORCHADO

Energy reform in Mexico and increased oil and natural gas production in Canada and the U.S. are paving the way for deeper integration and cooperation across North America, according to a new report. If these developments are combined with stronger economic, security and community ties — especially promoting the free movement of business professionals across the region — North America could position itself as the world’s most dynamic region. Texas, which accounts for much of the $500 billion in annual U.S.-Mexico trade, is front and center.  [Full Story]

Sep 30, 2014
Mundy Township residents have legal right to keep survey crews off their property
ABC 12
Randy Conat

MUNDY TOWNSHIP (WJRT) - (09/30/14) - Property owners in one Mid-Michigan community have been tangling with survey crews working with a pipeline company. Now, the residents learning they have some legal authority to keep them off their property. Many property owners in southern Genesee County have been upset when crews working for ET Rover have shown up to survey a path for a gas pipeline. The survey crews say the law is on their side, but one township supervisor says property owners have rights, too. A letter sent to homeowners from ET Rover reads in part: "If you obstruct or deny ET Rover entry upon your property...we will pursue our legal remedies to obtain entry." "It's even more intimidating for residents when these folks are accompanied by a security guard," said David Guigear, Mundy Township supervisor. Guigear checked with the township attorney, who says property owners can refuse the crews access to their land. "The Constitution's pretty clear that we have a right to protect our home and property," Guigear said.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Europe Seeks To Undermine Russian Energy Influence
OilPrice.com
Global Risk Insights

The fragile ceasefire and negotiations between Ukraine and Russia have revived hopes that the months-long violent conflict in Eastern Europe is nearing its end. However, many questions remain unanswered, as hostilities and distrust between the confronted parties continues to plague a potential peaceful solution. With the Ukrainian conflict unresolved and winter in sight, the EU will not only have the grand task of preparing the continent for the possibility of energy shortages, but also to define its long-term energy goals  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Researchers: U.S. LNG exports won’t solve 'Russia problem'
Wyoming Business Report
Mark Wilcox

Natural gas producers are encouraging liquid natural gas, or LNG exports, partially under the auspices of harming the natural-gas rich Russian government in the throes of political unrest and armed conflict. However, a new study said exporting U.S. liquid natural gas would do little to divert Russia from its course of using its natural resources as a power grab in Europe. Researchers from Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy concluded in a 60-page report released last week that while LNG exports could cause pain in Russia, the people feeling the pain might not be the intended targets.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
SENATOR TED O’BRIEN, LEAGUE OF CONSERVATION VOTERS ANNOUNCE LEGISLATION TO PROTECT NEW YORK FROM FRACKING WASTE
Long Island Exchange
Press Release

(Long Island, NY) Today, State Senator Ted O’Brien and the New York League of Conservation Voters announced a series of measures to address concerns about how horizontal high-volume hydraulic fracturing products produced in Pennsylvania are handled in New York State landfills, roads and treatment facilities. Senator O’Brien, who serves as Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Environmental Conservation, was joined by representatives from the New York League of Conservation Voters at the Durand Eastman Beach, across from the Van Lear Wastewater Treatment Plant. Senator O’Brien and the NYLCV announced several initiatives to protect New York from negative effects caused by the waste products from hydraulic fracturing, or hydrofracking, which is currently allowed in nearby Pennsylvania, but not New York State. The legislative package includes a bill Senator O’Brien will introduce shortly to ban hydrofracking drill cuttings from being accepted at New York landfills; Senator O’Brien’s bill to prohibit wastewater treatment facilities from accepting fracking waste unless they meet certain performance standards; legislation to classify fracking waste as a hazardous material; and a bill to ban Pennsylvania fracking waste from being transported into New York.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
NY bills to curb fracking waste suggested
Democrat & Chronicle
Steve Orr

The New York League of Conservation Voters and state Sen. Ted O'Brien, D-Irondequoit, announced a series of proposals Monday to rein in the handling and disposal of gas and oil drilling waste in New York. At a news conference, O'Brien and the league president, Marcia Bystryn, said legislation would be introduced in Albany that would bar the disposal of drilling wastes in New York landfills and restrict the treatment of liquid wastes from drilling in municipal wastewater plants. Another bill would require that drilling waste be treated as hazardous wastes, requiring a more robust response if the waste is spilled.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Finger Lakes residents ask U.S. senators to intervene in ongoing propane storage fight
Legislative Gazette
Michael Burke

Residents and business owners in the Finger Lakes region are calling for U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand along with President Barack Obama to intervene and halt a natural gas storage expansion plan on Seneca Lake.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
WV DEP issues notice of violation to Antero over Doddridge County drilling incident
wboy.com
09/29/2014

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has issued a notice of violation to Antero Resources for a well drilling incident that could have released methane gas into 12 personal water wells. The DEP was contacted by Antero Resources at approximately 9:23 p.m. Sept. 24 after Antero drilled a well and came in contact with an adjacent well on Antero's Primm Pad. The well and pad are located on Oxford Road, in the West Union area of Doddridge County  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
West Virginia Plans to Frack Beneath Ohio River, Which Supplies Drinking Water to Millions
Climate Progress
Emily Atkin

Nine citizen and environmental groups are urging West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to reconsider his plans to let companies drill for oil and natural gas underneath the Ohio River, citing concerns that drilling and fracking could contaminate the drinking water supply and increase the risk of earthquakes in the region. In a letter sent to the governor this month, the coalition of Ohio- and West Virginia-based groups said Tomblin’s Department of Environmental Protection has not proved that it can adequately protect the Ohio River, which supplies drinking water to more than 3 million people. The groups cited drilling currently taking place in a state-designated wildlife area, which some have complained is unacceptably disrupting the nature preserve, and a chemical spill in January that tainted the drinking water supply for 300,000 people.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Journalist speaks out against LNG
Squamish Chief
Drew Copeland

There is no question of which side of the LNG discussion Andrew Nikiforuk stands. On Thursday, Sept. 25 he spoke for an hour and a half in the Quest University library about hydraulic fracturing — a process called fracking — and liquid natural gas (LNG) in Western Canada. He let it be known he’s clearly displeased with the way things are proceeding in this industry. In front of a crowd of more than 150 people, Nikiforuk explained the history of fracking, current industry techniques, uncertainties of the practice, costs, foreign ownership, profitability, and how the provincial government is approaching LNG.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Woman says fracking damaged her property
The West Virginia Record
KELLY HOLLERAN

CHARLESTON – A Ritchie County resident has filed suit against the oil and gas companies she alleges harmed her land when they drilled horizontally into it in an attempt to retrieve the resource. OilGasVickie Nutter says she owns a home at 4404 Oxford Road in Pullman, which is close to the oil and natural gas drilling activities of defendants Antero, based in Denver, and Hall Drilling of Ellenboro. The defendant companies utilize a process known as fracking to retrieve the oil and natural gas from the ground. Fracking is a controversial process that releases chemicals into the ground under extreme pressure in an effort to dislodge the gas, according to the complaint filed Aug. 25 in Kanawha Circuit Court. There are many dangerous environmental concerns that accompany the fracking process, the suit states. For instance, natural gas is often burned during the process, which results in excessive emissions of hydrogen sulfide and other chemicals, the complaint says. “[The] defendants’ natural gas activities, acts, omissions, and instrumentalities that are within defendants’ exclusive control, are dangerous, and have caused grave harm to plaintiff,” the suit states.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Dominion Natural Gas Exports Plan Gets Federal OK
ABC NEWS
FREDERIC J. FROMMER

Dominion Energy received federal approval late Monday to export liquefied natural gas from its Cove Point terminal on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. In its decision, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission concluded that the project, as approved with conditions, would minimize potential adverse impacts on landowners and the environment. FERC has approved three other LNG export projects, but this is the first one on the East Coast. The others are in the Gulf of Mexico.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Dealing with the threat beneath our feet
Observer-Reporter
Editorial

Imagine if, over the last decade, 135 people were killed and 600 were injured around the country as a result of bombings linked to terrorist groups. You can rest assured immediate actions would be taken within the halls of government and yet more steps would be instituted to beef up security at schools, airports, shopping malls and any other places where large numbers of people congregate. That, however, was the toll from fires and explosions sparked by leaking natural gas lines. These distribution lines allow us to heat our homes and fire our ovens and stoves. Most of the time, we can turn up our thermostats or start roasting a turkey without undue concern. But the infrastructure that carries gas to our homes is becoming increasingly decrepit and the response to it has, for the most part, been dilatory.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Naomi Klein: Fossil Fuels Threaten Our Ability to Have Healthy Children Why oil spills, fracking, and climate change pose a special danger to the youngest members of all species.
Mother Jones
Indre Viskontas

It's self-evident that embryos, fetuses, and babies are vulnerable. We have strict laws protecting children because they cannot fend for themselves. And yet, too often, we ignore the impact that environmental disasters have on the very earliest stages of life. In her new book, This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate, Naomi Klein examines the effect that our reliance on fossil fuels has on the most helpless members of the animal kingdom—as well as on our own children.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
California Oil and Gas Update: In-depth look at the California BLM's fracking decision
JD Supra Business Advisor
Scott Castro

Oil and gas lease sales on public lands set to resume in 2015 based upon independent fracking report On August 28, 2014 the California State Office of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) signaled its intent to resume oil and gas lease sales on Federal lands in the state beginning next year with its announcement of a "comprehensive strategy for the federal oil and gas program in California." This announcement was issued after an independent study commissioned by the BLM found limited environmental effects from hydraulic fracturing (i.e., "fracking") and other enhanced drilling techniques.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Wastewater Tremors Weaker than Natural Earthquakes, USGS Reports
Heartland
James M. Taylor

Small earthquakes linked to underground wastewater injection are substantially weaker in their effects than natural earthquakes of the same magnitude, according to a new study conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey . Natural earthquakes are approximately 16 times as strong as human-induced tremors of the same magnitude.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
FERC Authorizes Construction of Cove Point LNG Export Project
FERC
Press Release

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) today authorized Dominion Cove Point LNG, LP to build the Cove Point Liquefaction Project in Calvert County, Maryland, and related facilities at an existing compressor station and at metering and regulating sites in Virginia. Today’s action came after more than two years of consideration of Dominion’s proposal during which FERC heard from more than 140 speakers at three public meetings related to the Environmental Assessment and received more than 650 comments from the public and federal, state and local agencies on the application. The project will enable Dominion to transport up to 860,000 dekatherms per day of natural gas form existing pipeline interconnects near the west end of the Cove Point Pipeline to the Cove Point terminal for the export of up to 5.75 metric tons of liquefied natural gas per year. The Commission found that the proposal, as mitigated with 79 conditions found in Appendix B of today’s order, is in the public interest.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Residents in shock as Texas Eastern begins clearing 35-mile gas line right of way in Lancaster County
Lancaster Online
AD CRABLE

Seventy-one homeowners and businesses in heavily populated Manheim Township are the first to get the shock. Beginning as early as next week, Texas Eastern Transmission Corp. will begin cutting down all trees and shrubs higher than 4 feet in a 75-foot-wide natural gas pipeline corridor that runs through yards in two sections of the township. The first areas to be shorn of existing vegetation are from Fruitville Pike to Lititz Pike and from Stoner Park to New Holland Pike.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
A U-Turn for a Terminal Built in Texas to Import Natural Gas
New York Times
Clifford Krauss

Qatar Petroleum, the state oil company, is now requesting permission to export American gas, proposing with its partner Exxon Mobil an audacious conversion of the facility to export from import. The additional estimated cost: $10 billion, if not more.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Israel's natural gas bonanza is an illusion, warns British energy expert Says export costs will be higher than those of competitors for all-important Far East market; suggests LNG be used mainly for domestic consumption.
Haaretz


The national consensus holds that the discoveries of huge offshore natural gas fields in recent years amount to an economic revolution, one that will put the economy on easy street for generations to come. A leading British energy expert, however, says it's an illusion. "Exporting gas as LNG [liquefied natural gas] is very expensive. Israeli gas isn't competitive enough to compete with LNG from other countries," says Nick Butler, one-time senior energy adviser to former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, and former vice president for strategy and policy development at British Petroleum Group, in an interview with Globes' Hedy Cohen.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Tanker Truck Causes Bridge To Partially Collapse In Greene County
CBS Pittsburgh


GREENE COUNTY (KDKA) – A water tanker truck trying to cross a historic Greene County bridge caused part of the bridge to collapse. The Observer-Reporter reports that the Pollocks Mill Bridge is closed after the truck tried to cross Sunday afternoon. The truss bridge was built in 1878 and spans the Ten Mile Creek near Clarksville.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Students Unite to Stop Natural Gas Power Plant on Campus
EcoWatch
Emily Behnke

At first, my freshman year of college was a breeze. Gen Ed classes? Easy. Homework? Doable. A brand-new living space with unfamiliar people? You get used to it. But once I decided to contribute to a full-scale environmental campaign against the university over its decision to build a natural gas power plant on campus, my year got a lot more complicated. I was ready to do the same things everyone does freshman year. I went to tons of club meetings, tried new things and met new people. But then came the power plant. Second semester wasn’t even in full swing when I learned that the University of Delaware had, under the binds of a 75-year lease, offered a plot of land to an independent company, The Data Centers LLC, for the construction of a data center and the natural gas power plant needed to power it. It was a billion dollar deal. That certainly sounded like a lot of money to me.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
A U-Turn for a Terminal Built in Texas to Import Natural Gas
The New York Times
Clifford Kraus

SABINE PASS, Tex. — The giant Golden Pass natural gas import terminal here, meant to bring Middle Eastern gas to energy-hungry Americans, sits eerily quiet these days, a sleepy museum to a bygone era. Its 5,000 valves, 50 million pounds of steel and ship berth as big as 77 football fields — representing a $2 billion investment by Qatar Petroleum, Exxon Mobil and Conoco Phillips — have been dormant for nearly three years. The unexpected American shale fracking frenzy produced such a glut of domestic gas that the United States does not need Qatari gas anymore. But the Golden Pass story is only beginning.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Chemical Makers, Energy Companies Tell EPA Not to Mandate Fracking Fluid Disclosure
BNA
Chemical Regulation Reporter

Sept. 25 — Chemical makers and energy companies have told the Environmental Protection Agency there is no need for it to require them to report information about the chemicals used for hydraulic fracturing fluids. “The American Petroleum Institute does not think that this Toxic Substances Control Act rulemaking is necessary in light of the extensive information already available to EPA and the public, and the scope and purpose of TSCA,” API said in comments submitted to the agency Sept. 18.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
NY bills to curb fracking waste suggested
Democrat & Chronicle
Steve Orr

The New York League of Conservation Voters and state Sen. Ted O'Brien, D-Irondequoit, announced a series of proposals Monday to rein in the handling and disposal of gas and oil drilling waste in New York. At a news conference, O'Brien and the league president, Marcia Bystryn, said legislation would be introduced in Albany that would bar the disposal of drilling wastes in New York landfills and restrict the treatment of liquid wastes from drilling in municipal wastewater plants. Another bill would require that drilling waste be treated as hazardous wastes, requiring a more robust response if the waste is spilled.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Losses Announced In The Permian
Energy Policy Forum
Deborah Lawrence

Japan’s Sumitomo Corporation, one of the largest trading houses in Asia, announced a considerable impairment charge of its US tight oil assets in the Permian Basin. It was the largest loss for the company since 1998 and wiped out ~96% of its profit for the year. Although there were two other impairments, they paled in comparison to the loss on tight oil. According to the Financial Times, a company spokesman said: “It is difficult to extract the oil and gas efficiently,” adding that [the company] could not “expect as much production to recover the investment.”  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
U.K. Fracking Trespass Law Changes Move Forward Despite Huge Public Opposition
Inside Climate News
Guardian

Fracking will take place below Britons' homes without their permission after ministers rejected 40,000 objections to controversial changes to trespass laws. The U.K. government argued that the current ability for people to block shale gas development under their property would lead to significant delays and that the legal process by which companies can force fracking plans through was costly, time-consuming and disproportionate.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
SOCMA Comments on EPA’s Proposed Fracking Disclosure Rule
Powder & Bulk Solids


The Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Affiliates (SOCMA) submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in response to its proposed rulemaking requiring companies to disclose the composition of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”). Some SOCMA members, the majority of which are small businesses, manufacture chemicals used in oil and gas exploration, including fracking. The comments, penned by SOCMA’s William E. Allmond, vice president, government and public relations, and Dan Newton, senior manager, government relations, emphasize why protecting trade secrets is important to SOCMA members, specifically in an industry where it is difficult to launch a product into commerce.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Third firm courts Maine regulators for cash to back natural gas pipeline expansion
Bangor Daily News
Darren Fishell

PORTLAND, Maine — Three companies have formally offered natural gas pipeline capacity to state regulators, who are considering whether they should charge a new fee to all of Maine’s electricity customers to help pay for projects designed to bring more natural gas into the Northeast. On Monday, Houston-based Spectra Energy presented a plan for expanding existing pipelines spanning the Northeast, a shot back at the Houston-based Kinder Morgan, which delivered details of its proposal for a new pipeline to regulators last week. “We wanted the state to understand that we have real tangible proposals for them to consider,” said Greg Crisp, Spectra’s director of business development.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Maine Candidates for Governor Spar Over Natural Gas Pipeline
MPBN
Tom Porter

Republican Gov. Paul LePage is defending his support of legislation that could make it easier for private businesses to use eminent domain to seize property for natural gas pipeline expansion. The governor says the legislation is necessary to alleviate what he calls the New England energy crisis. But the governor's two opponents oppose the move.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Transcanada reduces flow on ANR gas pipeline after rupture
Reuters Africa


Sept 29 (Reuters) - Transcanada has declared force majeure on its ANR natural gas pipeline after a rupture in Michigan last week caused a loss in pressure and reduced supplies to customers, it said in a notice on Monday. The cause of the leak in Benton Harbor in southwest Michigan on Sept. 16 is unknown and Transcanada is investigating, a company spokeswoman said. It is not clear when the pipeline will return to full service. The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued a corrective action order last week ordering Transcanada to restrict flows following the incident. "We will continue to operate at a reduced pipeline capacity and we are working on ways to minimize any potential impact to customers," she said.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
PA Environmental Council Calls For Opposition To Buffer Rollback Bill
PA Environment Digest


The PA Environmental Council Monday wrote to members of the House Monday opposing House Bill 1565 (Hahn-R-Northampton) eliminating the nearly 4 year old requirement for stream buffers in High Quality and Exceptional Value streams. The Council joins the Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, the PA Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, Fish and Boat Commission, PA Council of Trout Unlimited and the PA League of Women Voters in opposing the bill.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
PA League Of Women Voters Opposes Anti-Buffer House Bill
PA Environment Digest


The PA League of Women Voters wrote to members of the House Sunday opposing House Bill 1565 (Hahn-R-Northampton) eliminating the nearly 4 year old requirement for stream buffers in High Quality and Exceptional Value streams.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
DEP Fines NFG Midstream $250,000 For Pipeline Construction Violations in Lycoming
PA Environment Digest


The Department of Environmental Protection Wednesday announced it has fined NFG Midstream Trout Run LLC of Erie $250,000 for multiple violations of the Clean Streams Law and department regulations during construction of the Trout Run Gathering System pipeline in five Lycoming County municipalities during 2011 and 2012.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Chemical Makers, Energy Companies Tell EPA Not to Mandate Fracking Fluid Disclosure
Bloomberg
Pat Rizzuto

Sept. 25 — Chemical makers and energy companies have told the Environmental Protection Agency there is no need for it to require them to report information about the chemicals used for hydraulic fracturing fluids. “The American Petroleum Institute does not think that this Toxic Substances Control Act rulemaking is necessary in light of the extensive information already available to EPA and the public, and the scope and purpose of TSCA,” API said in comments submitted to the agency Sept. 18. State agencies and water authorities voiced a range of views on that question. Public health laboratories and environmental advocates told the EPA mandating disclosure will help protect the public and environment.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Pennsylvania DEP admits drilling probe error Tainted-water hearing targets Range inquiry
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Don Hopey

The state Department of Environmental Protection might have used incomplete and inaccurate test information to decide whether chemicals leaking from a Marcellus Shale wastewater impoundment and a drill cuttings pit contaminated a water well and springs in Washington County. The disclosures came last week during sworn testimony by Vincent Yantko, a DEP water quality specialist and supervisor of the department’s investigation at Range Resources’ Yeager farm drill site in rural Amwell Township, as part of a case before the state Environmental Hearing Board in Pittsburgh.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Fracking opponents to Cuomo: Come to Pennsylvania!
The Journal News
Jon Campbell

Opponents of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas are calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to make good on a promise to visit fracking sites in other states, sending him a letter last week urging him to travel south to Pennsylvania. frackingAP-620x360In a letter dated Sept. 25, advocacy group New Yorkers Against Fracking offered to organize a tour of gas country in the neighboring state, asking him to “see, hear and smell what it is like to live with fracking.”  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
WV DEP issues notice of violation to Antero over Doddridge County drilling incident
WBOY
Kim Freda

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has issued a notice of violation to Antero Resources for a well drilling incident that could have released methane gas into 12 personal water wells. The DEP was contacted by Antero Resources at approximately 9:23 p.m. Sept. 24 after Antero drilled a well and came in contact with an adjacent well on Antero's Primm Pad. The well and pad are located on Oxford Road, in the West Union area of Doddridge County.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Students Unite to Stop Natural Gas Power Plant on Campus
EcoWatch
Emily Behnke

At first, my freshman year of college was a breeze. Gen Ed classes? Easy. Homework? Doable. A brand-new living space with unfamiliar people? You get used to it. But once I decided to contribute to a full-scale environmental campaign against the university over its decision to build a natural gas power plant on campus, my year got a lot more complicated.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Zeal for fracking ignores risk
Bowling Green Daily News
Robert McCartney

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s attitude toward natural gas “fracking” seems to depend on whether it occurs somewhere that would be politically inconvenient for him. McAuliffe, a Democrat, said recently he’s determined to prevent the controversial drilling method from intruding on the rugged Appalachian beauty of the George Washington National Forest, where opposition has been strong.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Polarization in New York state over fracking
Phys.org


On Sept. 18, The Earth Institute hosted Tanya Heikkila and Chris Weible of the University of Colorado Denver for a seminar on "The Political Landscape of Shale Gas Development and Hydraulic Fracturing in New York." The seminar was attended by students, faculty and staff from across Columbia, and members of the local community. Professors Heikkila and Weible presented the results of their study, funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, looking at fracking perceptions in three study sites: New York, Texas and Colorado. The following is an overview of the results.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
What Will it Take for the EPA to Act on Fracking?
Food & Water Watch
Emily Wurth

It is well known that drilling and fracking contaminate water and it’s happening all across the United States. Yet President Obama and his administration, including the Environmental Protection Agency, are not only letting this happen unchecked, they’re actively promoting and expanding fracking. That’s why we’ve long been blowing the whistle and demanding answers.  [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Water Use for Fracking Oil Resembles Use for Conventional Production
University of Texas


AUSTIN, Texas — Producing oil through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, uses similar amounts of water on average as producing oil by conventional means, according to a new study by The University of Texas at Austin’s Bureau of Economic Geology. Bridget Scanlon, a senior research scientist at the bureau and lead researcher on the study, said the findings are important because of the current debate about the amount of water used to produce energy.   [Full Story]

Sep 29, 2014
Woman says fracking damaged her property
West Virginia Record
Kelly Hlleran

CHARLESTON – A Ritchie County resident has filed suit against the oil and gas companies she alleges harmed her land when they drilled horizontally into it in an attempt to retrieve the resource.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Dark side of the boom
The Washington Post
Sari Horwitz

North Dakota’s oil rush brings cash and promise to reservation, along with drug-fueled crime FORT BERTHOLD INDIAN RESERVATION, N.D. — Tribal police Sgt. Dawn White is racing down a dusty two-lane road — siren blaring, police radio crackling — as she attempts to get to the latest 911 call on a reservation that is a blur of oil rigs and bright-orange gas flares. “Move! C’mon, get out of the fricking way!” White yells as she hits 102 mph and weaves in and out of a line of slow-moving tractor-trailers that stretches for miles.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Professor co-authors study on fracking concerns
News Record
Courtney Stanley

Community residents raised concerns about potential health impacts of unconventional natural gas-drilling methods in a study co-authored by a University of Cincinnati assistant professor at the College of Medicine. Erin Haynes, an assistant professor in the environmental health department, has spent over 10 years working with rural Ohio communities to better understand their health concerns,  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Fracking boss bribes locals with promise to share of natural gas income if they agree to drilling under their homes
The Mail
Rosie Taylor

A fracking company has been accused of offering local people bribes of 6 per cent of its revenues if they agree to drilling under their homes. Jim Ratcliffe, the chairman of the chemicals firm Ineos, said that the offer meant landowners and communities could get £2.5billion over the next twenty years.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Fracking: government ignores 99% opposition to change trespass law
Blue and Green Tomorrow
llaria Bertini

After a government consultation resulted in 40,000 objections to changes to trespass laws that would allow energy companies to drill on private land, the government has decided to go on with the reform and ignore the public’s concerns.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Fracking could leave property owners liable - CLA
Farmers Guardian
Olivia Midgley

LANDOWNERS could feel the long term effects if the Government presses ahead with controversial plans which would allow drilling under properties without permission. The CLA said a consultation response from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) on fracking failed to properly tackle the issue of long-term liability leaving landowners at risk long after drilling has stopped.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Officials decline to take stance on Algonquin pipeline
Lewisboro Ledger
Jane K Dove

Despite a spirited and well-informed request from a group of Lewisboro women asking the Town Board to pass a resolution that would require much more stringent environmental assessment of plans by Algonquin Gas Transmission LLC to expand compressor stations and a gas pipeline and infrastructure operations around the tri-state region, including Rockland, Westchester, and Putnam counties, officials gave a thumbs down. After hearing from Lewisboro residents Lisa Silver, Jennifer Lahey and Elizabeth Meyer-Gross on Monday night, Town Board members said the activities were not within the town of Lewisboro and therefore not a matter for a Town Board resolution.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Fracking in the US: The story of one man's oil well
Christian Science Monitor
William Sargent

GALVESTON, TEXAS — East Texas between Houston and Galveston is a low flat land of cayenne-pepper heat coming off the tepid waters of Galveston Bay. The cries of laughing gulls and great-tailed grackles fill the salty air, and the silhouettes of vultures circle overhead. Donkey-head oil wells and offshore rigs moored opposite shrimp boats in the bay remind me that, despite a scattering of wind turbines and solar panels, the United States still remains firmly anchored in the Petroleum Age. That may be fortuitous for me, since I’m here to check out an oil well I’ve owned since I was in college. The site lies in a landscape of former horse farms and pear orchards on the Gulf Freeway, which runs between the two cities.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Green movement embracing more radical tactics as desperation grows
Al Jazeera America
Peter Moskowitz

Hundreds of thousands of people marched recently in the biggest climate-related demonstration ever. The slogan of the march: “To change everything, we need everyone.” A day later hundreds of people were arrested in downtown Manhattan for blocking traffic as part of the Flood Wall Street demonstration. The protesters' slogan: “Stop capitalism. End the climate crisis.” The two events, within 24 hours of each other and just a few miles apart, juxtaposed what have been two factions in the larger climate movement. The climate march highlighted the big-tent approach to organizing. Groups with widely differing and often conflicting ideals came together to broadcast a message that climate change is important — which they accomplished — but offered few solutions. On Wall Street, the protest was a tiny fraction of the march’s size and garnered much less attention, but the demands were much clearer: Hold the financial industry and the politicians who support it accountable for propping up the energy industry.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Dubious data: DEP’s flawed records stir mistrust on drilling
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Editorial

Drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale using the method known as fracking has been arguably both the greatest economic opportunity for Pennsylvania in recent years and its residents’ biggest concern. The Post-Gazette believes drilling can bring great benefits if it is properly regulated to protect the environment. To establish public trust in this process, the Corbett administration must inspect drill sites competently and disseminate the information efficiently. That challenge is being met only partly. While inspectors appear to be doing the best they can, despite claims that there are not enough of them, the information the state keeps on companies is incomplete and inaccurate, as the Post-Gazette’s Sean Hamill reported in a series of stories. His time-consuming investigation, which included filing requests for data under the state’s Right to Know law, went beyond the scope of most citizens’ ability to seek useful information on spills and driller performance. Unfortunately, the information assembled by the state is too flawed to be useful to anyone.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Caudrilla withdraws applications to frack in Lancashire after encountering problems with radioactive waste disposal
THE INDEPENDENT UK
TOM BAWDEN

Cuadrilla, the fracking company responsible for a series of earth tremors around Blackpool in 2011, has withdrawn applications for permits to frack in Lancashire after problems surfaced relating to the disposal of radioactive waste.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Fracking in the US: The story of one man's oil well A writer from liberal Massachusetts goes to Texas to deal with a family oil well. What he learned about fracking, salt domes, and America's energy future.
Christian Science Monitor
William Sargent

GALVESTON, TEXAS — East Texas between Houston and Galveston is a low flat land of cayenne-pepper heat coming off the tepid waters of Galveston Bay. The cries of laughing gulls and great-tailed grackles fill the salty air, and the silhouettes of vultures circle overhead. Donkey-head oil wells and offshore rigs moored opposite shrimp boats in the bay remind me that, despite a scattering of wind turbines and solar panels, the United States still remains firmly anchored in the Petroleum Age.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Gas industry aims to reclaim word ‘fracking’
Eagle Ford Texas
Joe Mahoney

COOPERSTOWN — The shale gas industry is making a new gambit to reclaim the word “fracking.” Fracking is short-hand for the extraction process technically known as horizontal hydraulic fracturing. The technique involves injecting fluid into shale beds at high pressure to free natural gas and petroleum trapped thousands of feet below the surface of the earth. The word fracking only this year made its debut in the Merriam-Webster dictionary. Some involved in the gas industry have been openly critical of the term, arguing it was intentionally demonized by anti-drilling activists who added the letter “k” to the slang term “frac’ing” that was initially used by drillers.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Fracking rule-makers sort comments in N.C.
Pilot Online
Jonathan Drew

A member of the North Carolina commission that’s developing fracking regulations says the panel has received dozens of public comments that have caused them “to really go back and do our homework,” but thousands of others offer unusable input such as: “Don’t Frack NC.”  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Oil company getting out of fracking ... for now
CBC News


An oil and gas company with a presence on the west coast of Newfoundland says it will finalize its exploration plans this fall. But David Murray, president and CEO of Black Spruce Exploration, said those plans will not include hydraulic fracturing, which is the controversial process of pumping fluid into a well to create enough pressure to crack, or fracture, the rock layer.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
GOP divided over oil export ban
Politico
Elana Schor

Republicans may be the party of free markets and “drill, baby, drill,” but the party’s presidential hopefuls and congressional leaders are seriously divided on whether the U.S. should start exporting its gusher of domestic oil. The petroleum industry’s crusade to lift the four-decade-old ban on crude oil exports is shaping up as next year’s hottest energy debate, and potential White House contenders like Gov. Chris Christie and Sens. Rand Paul and Marco Rubio are already on board. But some of the Hill’s most powerful Republicans are conspicuously steering clear of the issue, including Speaker John Boehner, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and would-be Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.   [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Study Finds Treated Fracking Wastewater Still Too Toxic
Oil Price
Andy Tully

One of the biggest concerns about hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is that the vast amount of wastewater produced by the process of extracting oil and gas from shale rock deep underground is incredibly toxic. Most often, the wastewater is injected into disposal wells deep underground. But a process does exist to convert contaminated water into drinking water that involves running it through wastewater treatment plants and into rivers. Now a new report says that treated wastewater could be fouling drinking water supplies.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Thai-Japanese duo angling for another Marcellus ethane cracker
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Anya Litvak

A partnership between Thailand’s largest chemical company and a Japanese trading and investment house is shopping the region for an ethane cracker site. Allenport’s Mon River Industrial Park in Washington County is one of three locations being evaluated by the group, which joins Bangkok-based PTT Global Chemical and Tokyo-based Marubeni Corp. This is the third potential cracker project seriously considering the Appalachian region to capitalize on the supply of natural gas liquids, specifically ethane, that are abundant in parts of the Marcellus and Utica shale formations.  [Full Story]

Sep 28, 2014
Ohio Singled Out for Worst Fracking Waste Disposal Practices
Care2
EcoWatch

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a new report this week showing that Ohio was the only state among eight studied that allows waste fluids from oil and gas wells to be disposed of without disclosure of the chemicals it contains.   [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
John Jenkyn welcomed CSG, now he wishes he'd locked the gate
Northern Star
Luke Mortimer

WHEN a few coal seam gas wells began springing up around John Jenkyn's property, he welcomed what he believed was a progressive and necessary industry. Now, four years and hundreds of wells later, the 47-year-old and his family of four, from Wieambilla, Queensland, say they are physically, mentally and financially shattered.   [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
Gas industry aims to reclaim word 'fracking'
The Daily Star
Joe Mahoney

Fracking is short-hand for the extraction process technically known as horizontal hydraulic fracturing. The technique involves injecting fluid into shale beds at high pressure to free natural gas and petroleum trapped thousands of feet below the surface of the earth. The word fracking only this year made its debut in the Merriam-Webster dictionary. Some involved in the gas industry have been openly critical of the term, arguing it was intentionally demonized by anti-drilling activists who added the letter “k” to the slang term “frac’ing” that was initially used by drillers.  [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
“The roads were cracking, the crime rate was rising”: What happens when fracking takes over your town
Salon
Lindsay Abrams

North Dakota is sitting on gold. The oil-rich Bakken formation, thanks to the advent of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, produces hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil each day; in one month this year, it produced as much oil as it had in all of 2004. And that means easy money, not just for North Dakotans, but for people all over the country in search of work. Welcome to the 21st-century boomtown. Change this drastic doesn’t come without its conflicts and complications, as director Jesse Moss found in Williston, a city in the western part of the state. Since 2008, workers have been streaming into the city, overwhelming its capacity to house them and testing the locals’ ability to be welcoming. The stand-out exception to the prevailing “us versus them” attitude is Pastor Jay Reinke, who fills his church — its pews, its hallways, its parking lot — with migrants.  [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
Duke University Study on Fracking Questions Water Contamination Source
NCNN
Bruce Ferrell

DURHAM -- A new Duke University study on fracking blames the water contamination around drilling sites on leaky well shafts, rather than the actual fracking process. Luis Martinez, with the Natural Resources Defense Council, says, even after reviewing the study, hydraulic fracturing cannot be considered safe.  [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
Nation rushes to embrace natural gas and fracking despite risks to environment
The Washington Post
Robert McCartney

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s attitude toward natural-gas “fracking” seems to depend on whether it occurs somewhere that would be politically inconvenient for him. McAuliffe (D) said recently he’s determined to prevent the controversial drilling method from intruding on the rugged Appalachian beauty of the George Washington National Forest, where opposition has been strong.  [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
U.S. judge refuses to halt fracking in Nevada
USA TODAY
Scott Sonner

RENO, Nev. (AP) — A federal judge has refused to block the release of oil and gas leases in Nevada that critics say will be used for hydraulic fracturing that could harm sage grouse and cause more environmental damage than the Bureau of Land Management admits. U.S. District Judge Miranda Du ruled she has no authority to grant opponents' request for an emergency order that would prevent the BLM from formally issuing the leases in an area stretching across about 270 square miles of central Nevada. Glade Hall, a lawyer representing the Reese River Basin Citizens Against Fracking, said this week they are considering refiling their complaint.  [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
Water scarcity concerns grow from use of fracking
The Des Moines Register
Carolyn Heising

With all the recent news about the use of new technological innovations in hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, you’d think that methods have been introduced to use less water for fracking. But the opposite is the case. For each new gas well, more than four times as much water, compared to a decade ago, is now being pumped deep beneath the ground, along with a mixture of sand and chemicals, to get gas out of shale formations.  [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
Greenhouse gas emissions up, despite Obama plans
The Hill
Julian Hattem

The U.S. is releasing more of the heat-trapping gas carbon dioxide, even as the Obama administration is embarking on new plans to control the pollutant. Data from the Energy Department released on Friday showed that U.S. emissions of carbon dioxide — the primary greenhouse gas caused by humans — had ticked up in the first six months of 2014, compared to previous years.  [Full Story]

Sep 27, 2014
Water scarcity concerns grow from use of fracking
Des Moines Register
Carolyn Heising Opinion

For each new gas well, more than four times as much water, compared to a decade ago, is now being pumped deep beneath the ground, along with a mixture of sand and chemicals, to get gas out of shale formations.   [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Report: Rapidly Expanding Frac Sand Miners Eye NY, MA, VT, PA
WAMC
Dave Lucas

Hydraulic fracturing is responsible for a surge in domestic production of natural gas. Although the contentious process is in political limbo in New York, several upstate counties may be virgin ground for the mining of what's called "frac sand."  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Here's Why Marcellus Shale Play Is So Important For Chesapeake
Forbes


The Marcellus shale is the largest natural gas producing region in the United States, accounting for close to one-fifth of the country’s total gas production. The shale is also emerging as one of the most economical gas plays, given the high production rates of wells in addition to improving drilling efficiencies being brought about by the adoption of technologies such as pad drilling. In this note, we take a look at Chesapeake Energy’s operations in the Marcellus shale as well as some of the broader trends driving production growth in the region.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Senator: General compared oil patch to war zone
Bismarck Tribune
Josh Wood Associated Press

DICKINSON, N.D. — The rapid growth of North Dakota's oil patch communities has so overwhelmed the infrastructure that the former commander of coalition forces in Iraq and Afghanistan compared the area to a battle field, a state legislator said Thursday. Senate Majority Leader Rich Wardner said he met with retired Gen. David Petraeus after the former CIA director visited oil patch communities in April. “He (Petraeus) said, ‘You know, this kind of looks like a war zone,’” Wardner said at the annual meeting of the North Dakota Petroleum Council in Dickinson.   [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Fracking - gas industry wants final word
Philadelphia Inquirer
Andrew Maykuth

PITTSBURGH - The Marcellus Shale industry is trying to reclaim a word that has become one of the most effective weapons of natural gas foes: Fracking.... "Fracking's a good word," the narrators say in the industry's radio and television spots, which will roll out Thursday in Pennsylvania. The advertisements extol the energy security, job growth, lower heating costs, and tax revenue generated by the natural gas boom.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Oil terminal comment period extended again
Times Union
Rick Karlin

The state Department of Environmental Conservation has already extended the comment period once and now they are allowing more time for input on a heating plant at the Port of Albany sought by Global Partners. The plant would allow heavier crude, such as that from Alberta, Canada’s tar sands region, to be put on tankers. Environmentalists particularly dislike that variety of oil due to the emissions: Here are the details:   [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
FEMA reverses ‘anti-fracking’ policy affecting NEPA flood victims
The Times Leader
Jon O'Connell

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has backpedaled on a policy that banned hydraulic fracturing or fracturing beneath land purchased with federal flood buyout money. In a letter provided by U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, R-Hazleton, FEMA regional administrator MaryAnn Tierney said the department will make an exception for eight flood-stricken properties affected by policy, which was enacted on May 5. Five of those properties are in Wyoming County in and around Mehoopany that were submerged during flooding in 2011; the other three are in Williamsport.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Study: Treated fracking wastewater could still threaten drinking water
NPR State Impact PA
Susan Phillips

A new study shows how treated wastewater from oil and gas operations, when discharged into rivers and streams that travel toward drinking water intakes, can produce dangerous toxins. The research confirms what scientists have been warning about for some time. The high concentrations of salty brine, which flows up from deep underground once a well is fracked, are difficult to remove from the wastewater without the aid of an expensive technique called reverse osmosis or a cheaper method known as thermal distillation. If the wastewater is treated conventionally, which does not remove the bromides, chlorides or iodides, then it can be combined with chlorine at a drinking water facility, and create carcinogens such as bromines and iodines.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Colorado’s Perceived Left Turn Puts Governor in Tight Race
The New York Times
Jack Healy

JULESBURG, Colo. — When a Democratic mayor and former brewpub owner named John W. Hickenlooper was elected governor four years ago, he did it with support from voters like Mark Turner. Mr. Turner is a gun dealer, a small-town politician in eastern Colorado and an avowed enemy of partisan labels — “Just call me an American,” he says. He liked Mr. Hickenlooper’s wonky centrism and positive campaigning style............................................................................. In addition to the death penalty and gun control, Republicans are focusing on the drilling process called fracking and energy regulations, water and other issues that underscore the fissures between urban and rural Colorado. At a recent meeting with leaders from northeastern Colorado, Mr. Beauprez said that government was “tying a knot in our belly.” The countryside would be a key to undoing it, he said.   [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Energy litigation concerns growing in Texas shale
Houston Business Journal
Jordan Blum

As oil production continues to boom in southern Texas' Eagle Ford shale, more litigation continues to grow from land disputes and more people wanting to claim royalties. Tom Ciarlone, a partner in the Burleson LLP law firm's San Antonio office, said more energy companies from Houston and elsewhere should consider being more "proactive" in order to ward off growing lawsuit trends. "Deep pockets are targets in the Eagle Ford," Ciarlone said.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Fracking trespass law changes move forward despite huge public opposition
The Guardian
Damian Carrington

Fracking will take place below Britons’ homes without their permission after ministers rejected 40,000 objections to controversial changes to trespass laws. The UK government argued that the current ability for people to block shale gas development under their property would lead to significant delays and that the legal process by which companies can force fracking plans through was costly, time-consuming and disproportionate. There were a total of 40,647 responses to a consultation on the move to give oil and gas companies underground access without needing to seek landowners’ permission, with 99% opposing the legal changes. Setting aside the 28,821 responses submitted via two NGO campaigns, 92% of the remaining responses objected to the proposals.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Pa. Auditor General: Don’t rely on DEP for good information
NPR State Impact PA
Susan Phillips

Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection is having a rough week. On Thursday, the Attorney General’s office showed reporters evidence of how DEP Secretary Chris Abruzzo exchanged pornographic emails with his pals on taxpayer time. And now, another state agency, the Auditor General’s office, has released a “citizens guide” to shale gas water complaints warning Pennsylvanians not to trust information on the DEP’s website. In an audit released back in July, the Auditor General described DEP’s ineptitude when it comes to investigating and acting upon shale gas related water complaints from citizens. Sloppy record-keeping, lax oversight, and poor communication with citizens topped the list of findings. So perhaps it’s not surprising that “Shale Gas Development and Water Quality Complaints — A Citizen’s Guide” urges caution when relying on DEP for accurate information.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Oil field worker dies in mishap
Amarillo Globe News
VANESSA GARCIA

An oil company worker was killed in a drilling accident about 11:30 a.m. Friday north of Amarillo. Potter County sheriff’s deputies responded to a call of an occupational accident on the Crawford Ranch on North U.S. Highway 287. Sheriff Brian Thomas said a man’s leg got caught in a ditch-digging machine. Responders provided emergency medical services on the man, but he died at the scene as a result of the injuries.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Fatal accidents spike during fracturing boom
Midland Reporter-Telegram
Lise Olsen

HOUSTON — Vilma Marenco called her husband after she finished the lunch shift at Pappasito's restaurant on April 22, promising to return before he had to catch a flight to a job in New Orleans. "Wait," she said. "Because I want to see you and kiss you before you leave." Marenco was less than a mile from home in Houston when the driver of an oilfield hauling truck, without a motor carrier license or any insurance, ran a red light on Old Beaumont Highway. The tractor-trailer, laden with metal pipe, struck and crushed the driver's side of Marenco's 15-year-old Chevy Cavalier, police reports and photos show.   [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Sean Hannity And Dana Perino: "Sponsored By" Fracking Companies
Media Matters
ERIC HANANOKI

Fox News hosts Sean Hannity and Dana Perino are giving speeches "sponsored by" major fracking companies while pushing for fracking on Fox. The conservative commentators spoke at the Shale Insight 2014 conference on September 24-25. The two-day event was organized by the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC), an industry lobbying group that advocates for the "development of natural gas from the Marcellus and Utica Shale geological formations." MSC members include Chevron, Shell, and ExxonMobil subsidiary XTO Energy. The group spent over $900,000 on lobbying in Pennsylvania during the first quarter of this year.   [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
UK Government Says Never Mind What People Want, Let’s Frack
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Following a nearly three-month public comment period in which more than 90 percent of the comments were opposed, the UK government announced it will go ahead with a plan to allow fracking beneath homes without the owners’ permission. Current rules allow homeowners to block shale gas projects. The government says the legal process to force them to allow them so is too time-consuming and expensive.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
The Natural Gas Boom Could Accelerate Climate Change
FiveThirtyEight Science
BROOKS MINER

Natural gas production in the United States is booming: Since 2005, it has increased by 35 percent,1 and with each passing year the country burns more gas, and less coal and oil. Natural gas emits far less carbon dioxide than coal or oil, and the gas boom has driven a decline in U.S. carbon dioxide emissions over the past decade. The boom stems largely from the shale gas revolution, in which hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling (“fracking”) allows recovery of natural gas and petroleum trapped in underground shale formations. Policymakers have hailed this revolution as beneficial in the fight against climate change, but natural gas does have a dark side: It is composed primarily of methane, which has a much stronger climate-warming effect than carbon dioxide. Unburned methane that leaks into the air from anywhere in our natural gas infrastructure has a potent climate-warming effect, and global methane levels have been steadily increasing since 2007.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Fracking And Chemicals Used In Drilling: A Supply Chain In Need Of Improvement
Forbes
Steve Banker

In producing oil through fracking, and other types of oil production as well, chemicals are injected into the ground to increase flow. The industry argues these chemicals are safe, environmental activists the opposite. Regardless of which position you take, there is a supply chain associated with delivering these chemicals to oil fields. A better supply chain means lower costs and better safety. Dave Lafferty wrote about this supply chain in a recent article which I have summarized below. Dave Lafferty was formerly a Technology Advisor in the Chief Technology Office at BP. He is now an ARC Associate assisting with research on Oil & Gas technologies.  [Full Story]

Sep 26, 2014
Judge: Sovereign exempt from Broomfield fracking moratorium
Broomfield Enterprise
Megan Quinn

Ruling finds oil and gas company can drill because of memorandum of understanding Sovereign is not subject to Broomfield's five-year moratorium on fracking, meaning the oil and gas company can move forward with plans to drill, a judge ruled on Thursday. Sovereign sued Broomfield, claiming it should be exempt from Broomfield's fracking restriction because of an agreement it had in place before the moratorium was approved by voters. Sovereign in 2013 planned to drill new wells in Broomfield, but was not able to because of the passage of the moratorium in November.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Mining for sand for fracking holds risks for communities, study says
Los Angeles Times
NEELA BANERJEE

As a domestic energy boom driven by hydraulic fracturing spreads, so could strip-mining for sand needed for the controversial production process, introducing risks to water, air, public health and property values, according to a report issued Thursday.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
For Oil and Gas Companies, Rigging Seems to Involve Wages, Too
ProPublica
Naveena Sadasivam

A ProPublica review of U.S. Department of Labor investigations shows that oil and gas workers – men and women often performing high-risk jobs – are routinely being underpaid, and the companies hiring them often are using accounting techniques to deny workers benefits such as medical leave or unemployment insurance. The DOL investigations have centered on what is known as worker "misclassification," an accounting gambit whereby companies treat full time employees as independent contractors paid hourly wages, and then fail to make good on their obligations. The technique, investigators and experts say, has become ever more common as small companies seek to gain contracts in an intensely competitive market by holding labor costs down.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
US Oil & Gas Fracking Boom Could Drive Silica Sand Mining Operations In 12 More States, Environmental Groups Say
International Business Times
Maria Gallucci

Victoria Trinko says she hasn’t opened the windows to her home in Bloomer, Wisconsin, in more than two years. That’s around the time a mining company began churning up silica sand a half-mile from her family farm, filling the air with tiny particles and making it harder for her to breathe. “I could feel dust clinging to my face and gritty particles on my teeth,” Trinko recalls.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Living Death: The Real Costs of Fracking
Truthout
Ellen Cantarow

The Real Cost of Fracking by Michelle Bamberger and Robert Oswald paves the way for the high-volume hydraulic fracturing industry to be put on trial for its role in endangering the health of American families, animals, food and water systems. In 1997, my husband and I got three Siamese kittens. Two were a brother-sister pair born into the same litter. The third was a kitten so tiny that she fit easily into the palm of my hand and, when she reached our house, into the cut-glass fruit bowl where, for half a day, she retreated in bereavement. It turned out that she should have stayed with her mother longer; she wasn't quite weaned. So I became her mother: part of the time I carried her around with me in a sack as if she were a baby. I'll admit that the cats have been like children in our family - especially Zoe, as bold, cheerful and fearless as she was small, with huge foxlike ears, large sapphire eyes, a slender muzzle and subtle, tan stripes. For the rest of her life, Zoe was with me when she wasn't sleeping - following me around the house, perched on the back of my chair while I wrote, lying next to me when I slept. On December 27, 2013, she died of kidney failure. The other two cats, now 17, live on.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
BREAKING NEWS: Burnaby wins ruling against Kinder Morgan
Vancouver Observer
Mychaylo Prystupa

In what's considered a huge win for the City of Burnaby's legal battle to stop the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, the National Energy Board struck down the company's application to forbid Burnaby city staff from blocking the pipeline company's test drilling on Burnaby Mountain. “Kinder Morgan is this arrogant company who assumed they could just go in and take direct action [to remove trees], based on their legal interpretation," said Burnaby's lawyer, Gregory McDade, Q.C. Thursday evening. "They thumbed their nose at the law." "It turns out they were wrong," added the lawyer.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Cuomo must ban fracking to protect the environment
Queens Chronicle
Nicole Caparelli Opinion

As you may know, fracking is a method of extracting fossil fuels — predominantly natural gas — from the shale formations deep underground. Fracking involves drilling a well, first far downward and then laterally along the rock formation, and then forcing an ultra-pressurized mix of liquid and sand into the well, creating cracks in the shale that release gas. If you’re an energy company executive, the technology that makes fracking possible is a miracle. If you’re a citizen who cares about the air you breathe, the water you drink, and the troubling prospect of a changing climate — it is an outright disaster. The list of calamitous impacts of fracking is continuously growing. New studies are confirming the long-held suspicions that fracking is linked to methane contamination of ground water — despite the drillers’ claims to the contrary.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Ohio is cited in GAO report for fracking waste disposal
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

COLUMBUS, OHIO: The federal Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) released a new report (http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-857R) disclosing that Ohio alone of eight states studied allows contaminated waste fluids from oil and gas wells to be disposed without advance disclosure of the contaminants it contains. The report had been requested by members of U.S. Senate and House environment committees to disclose the level of disclosure on the nature and toxicity of such wastes since “fracking” of deep shale rock layers to unlock oil and natural gas deposits has become common.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Cherokees join growing list of governments to ban fracking
NC Policy Watch


The Smoky Mountain News reports that the latest such body to weigh in to keep their community fracking-free is the Eastern Band of Cherokees Tribe: The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has joined a growing number of local governments opposing the state legislature’s decision to allow hydraulic fracturing, called fracking, in North Carolina. Earlier this month, tribal council passed a resolution outlawing the practice on tribal lands, a force of authority stronger than what county and municipal governments possess.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Couple claims fracking is destroying their land
West Virginia Record
Kelly Holleran

CHARLESTON – Two Harrison County residents have filed suit against the oil and gas companies they allege harmed their land when they drilled horizontally into it in an attempt to retrieve the resources. Bobby Lee Woodard and Zoe A. Woodard say they own a home at 3620 Isaacs Creek Road in Lost Creek, which is close to the natural gas drilling activities of the defendants Antero Appalachian and Hall Drilling.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Fracking Documentary Breaking Free at 30th Annual Boston Film Festival World Premiere Screening 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 28, at the Revere Hotel September 25, 2014
Herald Online


NEW YORK — A premiere of Breaking Free: The Shale Rock Revolution, a new documentary about the American energy renaissance directed by independent filmmaker Robin Bossert, will be featured in the closing day showcase “Call to Action on the Environment” at the 30th Annual Boston Film Festival at 2 p.m. September 28 at the Revere Hotel. The director will be on hand to answer audience questions after the film viewing. “Breaking Free seeks to bridge the information gap between public perception and an industry that fuels our daily lives, our national economy, and our future,” said filmmaker Bossert, who brings more than 30 years of experience to the documentary. “In making this documentary, we hope to lower the temperature on the conversation about fracking so we can make the right decisions for the future of our country.”   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Fracking in Fermanagh could unleash health disaster for locals, says doctor
Irish Mirror
Maurice Fitzmaurice

GP to warn politicians that nosebleeds headaches, rashes, breathing difficulties and nausea could affect people living near sites   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Government to introduce fracking drilling law despite 99% opposition
Click Green


The Government has confirmed it is to introduce proposed legislation to allow fracking companies to drill under homes without the property owner’s permission despite 99% of respondents to the consultation opposing the plans. Following a three-month public consultation, Energy Minister Matt Hancock today confirmed the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) will press ahead with the controversial law change.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Poll: UK perception of fracking improves, but public prefers renewables
Blue and Green Tomorrow
Tom Revell

The UK public has warmed slightly to fracking, according to a new poll, though approval rates for shale gas exploration remain low when compared to renewable energy. The survey, conducted by researchers from the University of Nottingham, reveals that approval for shale gas has risen from a low of 18.4%, after high profile anti-fracking protests last year, up to 21% as of September 2014.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Report: Rapidly Expanding Frac Sand Mining Is Hidden Danger Of Fracking Boom In U.S.
Sys-Con Media
PR Newswire

Major Harms Already Seen to Human Health, Water Quality and Property Values in WI and MN; Rapid Growth of Fracking Could Lead to Similar Mining in IL, ME, MA, MI, MO, NY, NC, SC, PA, TN, VT and VA. BOSTON, Sept. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Frac sand mining – the extraction of the fine-particle sand needed for hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") of wells -- is expanding rapidly in the United States and poses a little-understood threat to human health, the environment, and local economies, according to a major report issued today by the Civil Society Institute's Boston Action Research (BAR) and released in cooperation with Environmental Working Group (EWG) and Midwest Environmental Advocates (MEA).  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Earthquake Prompts Fracking Site Shutdown
Water Online
Sara Jerome

Ohio regulators froze operations at two injection wells for fracking sites after an earthquake hit the state this month. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources cited "possible evidence that the operation caused a 2.1-magnitude earthquake," the Associated Press paraphrased. An agency spokeswoman said that the department issued the order to American Water Management Services, according to the AP.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
5 Must-See Videos Inspired by the People’s Climate March
EcoWatch
Stefanie Spear

It was great to be in New York City and one of the 400,000 taking part in the People’s Climate March. What an incredible moment in time. It truly feels like the tipping point we’ve all been waiting for.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Danger in the Air Silica Particles from Frac Sand Mining Put Tens of Thousands at Risk
Environmental Working Group
Soren Rundquist, EWG GIS/Landscape Analyst, and Bill Walker, EWG Consultant

The boom in natural gas and oil exploration using hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, commonly called fracking, has created a huge demand for the sand that drilling companies mix with water and toxic chemicals and inject underground to free gas and oil trapped in deep rock formations. A 33-county area that spans southeastern and south-central Minnesota, southwestern Wisconsin and northeastern Iowa has become a major source for this now-valuable sand. As of March 2014, according to data compiled and mapped by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), the tri-state area was home to 71 operating silica sand mines and 27 sites for solely processing, transporting or loading sand onto trucks or rail cars. Another 82 mines or associated sites have been proposed or granted permits.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Pennsylvania Releases Official File Detailing 250 Water Supplies Directly Polluted by Fracking
Reader Supported News
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection

  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Confessions of a reluctant climate-change marcher
The Villager
Sarah Ferguson

What was the impact of Sunday’s massive People’s Climate March? Was it, as 350.org founder and march instigator Bill McKibben claimed, “the most important day” in the history of the climate movement? I confess when I first heard about the march, it seemed like another big protest parade to nowhere through the canyons of N.Y.C. With slick subway ads pledging to unite “hipsters and bankers” and even a glossy promo video celebrating the organizers and their mission to “make history,” the march sounded more like Live Aid for the planet — with no central demands on world leaders or threats to corporate power to give it teeth. Having walked through the soles of my boots at marches to stop Bush’s Iraq War, I’ve experienced the limits of simply putting our bodies in the streets.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
If Democrats take majority, Senate would take up fracking bills
Capital New York
Scott Waldman

ALBANY—A number of bills to restrict fracking in New York State could make their way to the Senate floor if Democrats win control of the upper chamber in November.... In the Senate, where the breakaway Independent Democratic Conference and Republicans control the chamber, a number of anti-fracking bills have died in committee in recent years. But Democrats, particularly those in New York City whose constituents would not directly benefit from fracking-related jobs, have been waiting for years to get those bills to the floor.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Fracking - gas industry wants final word on word
Philadelphia Inquirer
ANDREW MAYKUTH

PITTSBURGH - The Marcellus Shale industry is trying to reclaim a word that has become one of the most effective weapons of natural gas foes: Fracking. The Marcellus Shale Coalition, which opened its annual conference Wednesday in Pittsburgh, is launching a campaign aimed at countering the negative connotations associated with fracking, the term derived from the gas-extraction technique of hydraulic fracturing, which has become a catchall pejorative among activists for all aspects of drilling.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Switch to Natural Gas Won't Reduce Carbon Emissions Much, Study Finds
National Geographic
Christina Nunez

Switching from coal to natural gas for power generation won't do much to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and might even raise them slightly, in part because it will discourage the use of carbon-free renewable energy, according to a study released Wednesday. Increased use of natural gas has been widely credited with having reduced U.S. carbon dioxide emissions in recent years. But the new study, published in the journal Environmental Research Letters, finds that between 2013 and 2055 the use of natural gas could reduce cumulative emissions from the electricity sector by no more than 9 percent, a reduction the authors say will have an insignificant impact on climate. The power sector accounts for around a third of U.S. emissions.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Living Death: The Real Costs of Fracking
EIN Newsdesk
Ellen Cantarow

The Real Cost of Fracking by Michelle Bamberger and Robert Oswald paves the way for the high-volume hydraulic fracturing industry to be put on trial for its role in endangering the health of American families, animals, food and water systems. In 1997, my husband and I got three Siamese kittens. Two were a brother-sister pair born into the same litter. The third was a kitten so tiny that she fit easily into the palm of my hand and, when she reached our house, into the cut-glass fruit bowl where, for half a day, she retreated in bereavement. It turned out that she should have stayed with her mother longer; she wasn't quite weaned. So I became her mother: part of the time I carried her around with me in a sack as if she were a baby. I'll admit that the cats have been like children in our family - especially Zoe, as bold, cheerful and fearless as she was small, with huge foxlike ears, large sapphire eyes, a slender muzzle and subtle, tan stripes. For the rest of her life, Zoe was with me when she wasn't sleeping - following me around the house, perched on the back of my chair while I wrote, lying next to me when I slept. On December 27, 2013, she died of kidney failure. The other two cats, now 17, live on. It is hard to imagine how I would feel if a corporation invaded my neighborhood, drilled for gas, spread fracking waste on our driveway, and contaminated the water our animals and we drink. To think of Zoe or either of the other two being poisoned by the drilling chemicals, and by the heavy metals, radium and fracking fluid chemicals that spew up in millions of gallons after the drilling, is terrible. But this is exactly what has happened to companion animals and livestock owned by rural residents of Pennsylvania, site of the nation's most frenzied and protracted high-volume hydraulic fracturing. (By now you probably know what "fracking" of the high-volume variety means: "high-volume" involves millions of gallons of water laced with chemicals and sand, which are propelled down drill bores to blast methane up and out of shale. The flowback I've just described follows the actual drilling.) Sarah and Josie are neighbors in countryside south of Pittsburgh, a quiet rural landscape undergoing massive industrialization by the fracking industry. Josie's dream was to raise purebred boxers and bulldogs, her life revolving around the animals. Sarah lived in a farmhouse more than a century old, together with her two children. A neighbor leased several acres of his farmland to a fracking company and Josie, who already knew about the links between fracking and water contamination, began keeping precise records charting the drilling and completion of wells and also the completion of a wastewater impoundment. It was after the impoundment was completed in spring 2010 that Josie lost her well water and her spring water dropped to a trickle. With her husband she began hauling water from a nearby creek for the family needs - they couldn't manage physically to haul water for their horses. The first animal to die wasn't a horse, but a young, beloved boxer named Mr. Higgins. A veterinarian diagnosed kidney failure. One of Mr. Higgins' lymph nodes was enlarged; a New York State veterinarian named Michelle Bamberger, who was interviewing Pennsylvania residents for a book she was writing with Cornell University molecular medicine professor Robert Oswald, advised a needle biopsy to rule out lymphoma (common in this breed, she notes in the book that has finally appeared, The Real Cost of Fracking: How America's Shale Gas Boom Is Threatening Our Families, Pets And Food, published by Beacon Press in August). The needle biopsy was never done - even though Josie brought Mr. Higgins to a specialty clinic, she "declined further diagnostics and opted for euthanasia," not being able to bear watching him suffer any longer. "A young dog," observes Bamberger, "less than two years old, progressed from healthy to incapacitated in a few days, with lab work indicating the possibility of cancer, but also liver and kidney toxicity." Josie told Bamberger that two days before Mr. Higgins became ill, a truck had spread wastewater on her road (a common industry practice), and Mr. Higgins lapped up a puddle near the driveway. "Josie will never know for sure," says Bamberger, "but very likely Mr. Higgins drank a cocktail of heavy metals and radioactive and organic compounds that tasted salty and made him want to consume more." Next in the death march was a horse named Amy, pronounced healthy by a veterinarian several months after Mr. Higgins died, but who, a few weeks after that, stopped eating, lost weight and appeared to lose her balance and coordination. A vet came to treat Amy for what he assumed was a neurological disease (equine protozoal myeloencephalitis) and took blood for testing. Two days later Amy's back legs became so weak she couldn't stand. She sank in her stall and began convulsing. Again distraught, Josie had Amy euthanized. The blood results indicated liver failure due to toxicity - the vet suspected poisoning from heavy metals (these are present in fracking wastewater) - but the illness was never diagnosed. Josie couldn't afford the necropsy and further testing that might have concluded the diagnosis. Moreover, representatives of the drilling company came soon after the euthanasia and offered a "neighborly thing": carting Amy's body off to be incinerated. Both Sarah and Josie experienced the entry of fracking crews in their area as an invasion that started with "dust . . . dirt, and . . . noise caused by . . . constant drilling traffic." Earlier, the view from Sarah's farmhouse had been gorgeous, with vistas across the valley to the next ridge of hills, and a feeling of seclusion and privacy. But a large well pad (a "pad" is the area where wells are located) was built with seven wellheads and attendant tanks (one of the signal characteristics of high-volume fracking is multiple wellheads occupying a single pad). From these issued poisons (my word rather than the euphemism "contaminants") that thickened the atmosphere, finally driving Sarah, a single mother and a nurse, to take her children and leave. "There were times . . . in the morning - the air would feel dewy. You could just feel the chemicals on you," she told Bamberger. "It was so thick. It's almost like a bug that is caught in a fogger . . . I felt like I couldn't breathe - I would get so short of breath." The animals were sentinels for Sarah's symptoms. Besides shortness of breath, she lost her sense of smell. After abandoning the house, whenever she returned, she'd get a metallic taste in her mouth and a recurrence of headaches. She still feels guilty that she waited to leave this house, one that commanded her love and loyalty because her great-grandfather had lived in it. With what the authors describe as "a mother's guilt" Sarah said, "We didn't even know [the impoundment] was up there until we figured out what was going on. We just thought it was a well pad." Both women are left to live with uncertainty about the consequences of living where they have: cancers, for instance, take many years to develop, and by the time they do, it is even harder to establish causes. The book's frontispiece has the simple legend, "For the animals," and the way animals and children become sentinels for adults living amidst fracking infrastructures. Children's metabolic rates are higher than adults'; their immune systems, immature. But animals suffer greater exposures than children do. "While children are sentinels," write the authors, "for many reasons, animals are even more so. When families leave for work and school, their animals are often left at home either in the house, barn, or yard, increasing exposure times. Whereas children can be given bottled water to drink, few people can afford to buy bottled water for a horse  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Earthquake Prompts Fracking Site Shutdown
Water Online
Sara Jerome

Ohio regulators froze operations at two injection wells for fracking sites after an earthquake hit the state this month. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources cited "possible evidence that the operation caused a 2.1-magnitude earthquake," the Associated Press paraphrased. An agency spokeswoman said that the department issued the order to American Water Management Services, according to the AP. Frackfree Mahoning Valley, an advocacy group, had pushed for regulators to step in after the quake. "In the interest of protecting the public health, safety, and well-being, concerned citizens of Frackfree Mahoning Valley are calling for an immediate halt of all waste injection at two, new Weathersfield injection wells that are, reportedly, near the epicenter of the 2.1 magnitude earthquake that occurred on August 31, 2014 in the Weathersfield/Niles, Ohio area. FFM wants to know if waste injection is still ongoing at the wells, or not," the group said in a press release. Ohio regulators have studied the link between earthquakes and injection wells in the past. "All of the conditions associated with induced seismic activity can be addressed in the well permitting and construction process by utilizing additional geologic data and prohibiting injection into Precambrian basement rock. Future earthquakes can be avoided," according to previous Ohio Department of Natural Resources documents. Various researchers are studying the connection between earthquakes and fracking sites. According to a study released in July, "the massive increase in earthquakes in central Oklahoma is likely being caused by the injection of vast amounts of wastewater from oil and gas operations into underground layers of rock," an announcement from the University of Colorado reported.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Fort Collins appealing to keep fracking ban
starherald.com


City councilors in Fort Collins voted Tuesday to appeal a court ruling last month overturning a 5-year ban on hydraulic fracturing passed by voters. The Coloradoan reports that the city's attorney will file an action in the Colorado Court of Appeals and also ask a lower court to keep the ban in place while the appeal proceeds. Last month, Longmont leaders also decided to appeal a ruling against its ban on fracking. The technique pumps water, fine sand and chemicals into wells to fracture open oil- and gas-bearing rock deposits. A judge has also overturned Lafayette's fracking ban. The Colorado Oil & Gas Association says the appeal is a waste of taxpayers’ money.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Gas drilling public health risks get an airing
WTOP


OAKLAND, Md. (AP) -- Garrett County residents are getting a chance to hear about the potential public health risks of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in their region. The local health department is hosting a presentation Thursday night on a study conducted by the University of Maryland School of Public Health.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Ohio Singled Out for Worst Fracking Waste Disposal Practices
EcoNews
Anastasia Pantsios

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a new report this week showing that Ohio was the only state among eight studied that allows waste fluids from oil and gas wells to be disposed of without disclosure of the chemicals it contains.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Natural Gas a Bridge to Nowhere, Study Finds
EcoNews
Anastasia Pantsios

A study published today in the journal Environmental Research Letters found that switching from coal to natural gas would not significantly lower the greenhouse gas emissions that drive climate change.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
For Oil and Gas Companies, Rigging Seems to Involve Wages, Too U.S. Department of Labor investigations have uncovered hundreds of cases in which oil and gas workers, many involved in dangerous jobs, are being cheated of earnings.
ProPublica
Naveena Sadasivam

A ProPublica review of U.S. Department of Labor investigations shows that oil and gas workers – men and women often performing high-risk jobs – are routinely being underpaid, and the companies hiring them often are using accounting techniques to deny workers benefits such as medical leave or unemployment insurance.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Colorado Fracking Panel Meets For First Time
CBS Denver


DENVER (AP) — Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper on Thursday told a group he assembled to study land-use clashes between Colorado’s energy industry and homeowners that he’s hopeful the suggestions they give state lawmakers can be a model for other places grappling with the issue.   [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
VIDEO Carcross, Yukon, residents speak out against fracking Hearings in Whitehorse Thursday night and Saturday
CBC News


More than 100 people in Carcross, Yukon, came out to a meeting last night to talk about fracking, and speakers were overwhelmingly against the practice. An all-party legislative committee has been gathering opinion at public hearings on the risks and benefits of hydraulic fracturing since June.  [Full Story]

Sep 25, 2014
Couple claims fracking is destroying their land
The West Virginia Record
KELLY HOLLERAN

CHARLESTON – Two Harrison County residents have filed suit against the oil and gas companies they allege harmed their land when they drilled horizontally into it in an attempt to retrieve the resources. OilGasBobby Lee Woodard and Zoe A. Woodard say they own a home at 3620 Isaacs Creek Road in Lost Creek, which is close to the natural gas drilling activities of the defendants Antero Appalachian and Hall Drilling. The defendant companies utilize a process known as fracking to retrieve the oil and natural gas from the ground. Fracking is a controversial process that releases chemicals into the ground under extreme pressure in an effort to dislodge the gas, according to the complaint.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Brian Gallant's hydro-fracking promise concerns oil industry Oil and gas industry would like to sit down with Gallant to discuss 'fact-based information'
CBC News


New Brunswick Premier-designate Brian Gallant says he will follow through on his party’s plan to institute a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, but that has people in the oil and gas industry concerned. Nova Scotia and Quebec have already instituted fracking bans.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Treating fracking wastewater results in new unsafe compounds Researchers with the American Chemical Society found that even extremely diluted wastewater can still produce toxic byproducts when treated.
UPI
Brooks Hays

WASHINGTON, Sept. 24 (UPI) -- A new study suggests fracking wastewater can endanger drinking water even after it has passed through treatment plants and been diluted.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Lawsuit threatens 'ban' on fracking
Petoskey News
Mark Johnson

MICHIGAN — After reviewing a number of state and tribal laws, two men believe a specific type of drilling in Michigan has been executed illegally. Phil Bellfy, democratic candidate for the 37th State Senate District and Tim LaCroix, candidate for the Charlevoix County Commissioner District 3, filed a lawsuit asking for an injunctive order which would stop the use of fresh water injected into the ground during hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking," until Tribal or Federal court has an opportunity to review the situation.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Fracking Bans Start to Upset Colorado Land Owners
Townhall.com
thomas Miller

Some mineral owners in Colorado are ticked off. Facing several looming local initiatives to ban fracking in some of the most oil-rich parts of the state, those who would benefit most, the royalty owners, are out right upset.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Fracking waste ban discussed in Albany County
WNYT


Fracking takes center stage once again in Albany County. The legislature held a public hearing on the waste created by the controversial gas drilling method. Even though fracking isn't happening in New York, the waste has been dumped in New York landfills for decades.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Study: People Who Live Near Fracking Sites More Likely to Report Health Problems
Lawyers and Settlements.com
Heidi Turner

Pittsburgh, PA: While many people have discussed the possibility that hydraulic fracturing and fracking contamination are linked to health problems in people who live near the sites, not a lot of research has been done into the issue. Water contamination and other lawsuits have been filed alleging people who lived near the sites suffered injury or illness as a result, but still not a lot is known about the potential link between fracking and health problems.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
New York State Steps Up On Clean Energy--10 years, $5 billion
NRDC Switchboard
Jackson Morris Blog

Here’s the news, hot off the press: New York’s Governor Cuomo has proposed committing $5 billion—that’s right—a walloping $5 billion, over the next 10 years, to make New York state a clean-power powerhouse. The proposal, submitted yesterday afternoon as a part of a regulatory filing, would put the Empire State on a clear glide path toward meeting its existing commitments to cut carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2030, and 80 percent by 2050. That’s pretty impressive.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Burned up by self-righteous environmentalists
AM New York
William F. B. O'Reilly

These crisp autumn days are sublime, but I'm burning up inside. Ever since the People's Climate March Sunday, beads of perspiration have been running down my neck. I can't figure out why.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
CSU develops website to monitor well water
Coloradoan
Ryan Maye Handy

Colorado State University researchers unveiled a website that monitors well water quality near oil and gas development sites on Tuesday, Sept. 24. The website, Colorado Water Watch, is the first of its kind in the nation, researchers said. It takes data from wells near oil and natural gas sites and uploads them every hour. Ken Carlson, a CSU professor of civil engineering, led the project and with other researchers spent the last 18 months selecting wells for testing and building a the back end of the system.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
National Grid begins work on Newtown Creek project
Capital New York
David Giambusso

National Grid and New York City have begun the design and construction phase of a plan to convert solid waste into pipeline quality natural gas, the utility and city will announce Thursday. As Capital reported last month, the Newtown Creek wastewater treatment facility in Brooklyn is expanding a pilot program that examined turning food and solid waste into gas.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Finger Lakes residents ask Schumer and Gillibrand to intervene in propane storage pl
Legislative Gazette
Michael Burke

Residents and business owners in the Finger Lakes region are calling for U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand along with President Barack Obama to intervene and halt a natural gas storage expansion plan on Seneca Lake. A coalition consisting of hundreds of businesses and residents in the Finger Lakes region sent letters to the elected officials citing residents' health and the health of Seneca Lake, which is a drinking water source for 100,000 people and critical to the local economy.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Obama’s Bridge Energy Hampers Renewables, Researchers Say
Bloomberg
Isaac Arnsdorf

Growing use of natural gas fails to benefit the environment because it slows the spread of renewable energy sources, according to a study released today. While natural gas releases less carbon dioxide than coal when burned to produce electricity, it hampers growth of cleaner energy such as wind and solar, according to a paper in the journal Environmental Research Letters. Without a climate policy, inexpensive gas will increase power consumption, researchers from the University of California at Irvine, Stanford University and the Stanford, California-based non-profit organization Near Zero found using an economic model.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Obama's Pitiful Pledge Epitomizes Failure of UN Summit: Climate Campaigners
Common Dreams
Sarah Lazare

Historic crowds gathered in New York City this week to demand drastic action in the face of the ever worsening climate crisis. But at Tuesday's Climate Summit at the United Nations headquarters, heads of state—most notably President Obama—did not come close to heeding the urgent calls for concrete action, say climate justice campaigners. The summit was convened by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to showcase "government, finance, business, and civil society" solutions to the climate crisis, according to a UN announcement. Politicians, corporations, and token civil society groups were invited to participate, while social movement organizations were excluded from the summit. Perhaps the most notable thing about this year's meeting, which follows a similar gathering in Copenhagen in 2009, was the large role played by corporations in the day's events and plenaries. Justin Gillis pointing out in the New York Times that "companies are playing a larger role than at any such gathering in the past."  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Strictly Business: Why $50 Billion Divestment of Oil Stocks Makes Sense
Energy Policy Forum
Deborah Lawrence

Various philanthropies and high wealth individuals controlling ~ $50 billion in assets announced that they intend to divest their portfolios of all fossil fuel stocks over the next five years. The most interesting comment to come out of this announcement came from Stephen Heintz, an heir of John D. Rockefeller who, of course, made his fortune in the oil business. Heintz stated: “We are quite convinced that if he [John D. Rockefeller] were alive today, as an astute businessman looking out to the future, he would be moving out of fossil fuels and investing in clean, renewable energy.” Strictly from a business perspective, he is almost certainly right.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Tribe bans fracking
Smokey Mountian News
Holly Kays

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has joined a growing number of local governments opposing the state legislature’s decision to allow hydraulic fracturing, called fracking, in North Carolina. Earlier this month, tribal council passed a resolution outlawing the practice on tribal lands, a force of authority stronger than what county and municipal governments possess. The June legislation that lifted the state’s moratorium on fracking included a clause keeping local governments from outlawing the practice in their jurisdiction, so their resolutions are an expression of opinion rather than an act of law. But the Eastern Band is a sovereign nation, so the tribal council is able to completely prevent drilling on Cherokee land. “The State of North Carolina is without legal authority to permit hydraulic fracturing on Tribal Trust lands,” the resolution reads, later continuing, “The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians will not permit or authorize any person, corporation or other legal entity to engage in hydraulic fracturing on Tribal Trust lands.”   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Recycle 'Fracking' Wastewater For Fracking, Don't Drink It
Science 2.0`


Natural gas hydraulic fracturing - fracking - has been wonderful for CO2 emissions while keeping energy costs for poor people manageable but a few sites have been treating fracking wastewater and returning it to rivers. A new study finds that this is just as risky as dumping any municipal treated wastewater back into rivers. As runoff, it is safe but it shouldn't be done in volume. In the case of fracking wastewater, existing facilities are not equipped to thoroughly deal with halides so until they are ready, it's simply better to use fracking wastewater for fracking.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Tribe bans fracking
Smoky Mountain News
Holly Kays

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has joined a growing number of local governments opposing the state legislature’s decision to allow hydraulic fracturing, called fracking, in North Carolina. Earlier this month, tribal council passed a resolution outlawing the practice on tribal lands, a force of authority stronger than what county and municipal governments possess.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
‘Crippling penalties’ urged for drillers hiding fracking chemical lists
Bolumbus Business First
Tom Knox Blog

Some big, diverse names are speaking out on proposed EPA rules that could require oil and gas drillers to disclose the chemicals they use in fracking. Comments from the New York Attorney General and commissioners in Portage County, Ohio, plea for federal regulation, while oilfield services giant Halliburton Co. and the governor of Wyoming want the EPA to butt out. The commenting deadline was Sept. 18.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Could fracking harm drinking water?
Rock River Times
Jim Hagerty

An advocacy organization is launching a research effort to determine whether the practice of fracking could harm drinking water. Environment America wants answers it claims the fracking industry has failed to provide, specifically whether the controversial drilling technique will seep toxic chemicals into drinking water supplies.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
We Can Transition to 100% Renewable Energy Starting Today
EcoNews
Mark Ruffalo

Across the nation, American businesses, families and communities are embracing clean, renewable energy that is homegrown, healthy, and can never run out. By finding alternatives to fossil fuels that pollute our air and disrupt our climate, they are showcasing the single most practical way to tackle climate change, starting now. Companies including General Motors, Walmart, Apple, Johnson & Johnson, Crayola and Google are putting in solar and wind farms to run operations, and finding that clean energy is good for business.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Finger Lakes residents ask Schumer and Gillibrand to intervene in propane storage plan
Legislative Gazette
Michael Burke

Residents and business owners in the Finger Lakes region are calling for U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand along with President Barack Obama to intervene and halt a natural gas storage expansion plan on Seneca Lake. A coalition consisting of hundreds of businesses and residents in the Finger Lakes region sent letters to the elected officials citing residents' health and the health of Seneca Lake, which is a drinking water source for 100,000 people and critical to the local economy.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
City to appeal judge's fracking decision
Coloradoan
Erin Udell

Fort Collins City Council voted Tuesday to appeal last month's overturning of the city's five-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Fracking: What is it and why you should care
Orange County Register
Phoolendra Mishra

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines fracking or hydraulic fracturing as a “well stimulation process used to maximize the extraction of underground resources; including oil, natural gas, geothermal energy, and even water.” In a general sense, fracking requires injection of high-pressure fluid (generally water) mixed with chemicals to create cracks in the geologic layers deep below the surface. These cracks, or new channels, enable extraction of underground resources, which otherwise would stay there intact.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
World Leaders, Listen to the People Not the Polluters
EcoWatch
Kumi Naidoo

The world has changed since our leaders discussed climate change in 2009. It has become even more evident; ravaging crops in Africa, melting ice in the Arctic, drowning the Philippines and drying-up California. The poor are paying the highest price. But ever since super storm Sandy hit New York, even the rich in industrialized countries know that they can´t hide from devastating climate change in their gated communities.   [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Switch to Natural Gas Won't Reduce Carbon Emissions Much, Study Finds Will burning cheap gas just make us use more energy and delay the rise of renewables?
National Geographic
Christina Nunez

Switching from coal to natural gas for power generation won't do much to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and might even raise them slightly, in part because it will discourage the use of carbon-free renewable energy, according to a study released Wednesday.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
New alliances being formed outside governments to fight climate change As activists bemoan a lack of political will among world leaders, what can the rest of society do about global warming?
Aljazeera America
Renee Lewis

In the absence of strong action by political leaders, many have wondered what can be done outside of governments to stave off the worst effects of global warming. Participants at the Empire State Building event said new alliances between the private sector and civil society are increasingly taking on that challenge.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Trace Isotope Analysis Reveals Fracking Is Contaminating Well-Water In 3 Ways
Neomatica
Editor

New research by scientists at Ohio State University using trace isotope analysis shows that increasing contamination over time of well water near 8 fracking sites in Texas and Pennsylvania is linked to fracking. The researchers extended their analysis and identified 3 mechanisms by which fracking was causing the contamination: 1) leaks through the “annulus”, or the space around a pipe in a well bore, 2) leaks through cracks in the production casing of pipes, and 3) leaks in a “failed well”, specifically through the failure of a well “packer” that usually acts a sealing device that blocks a well bore. Surprisngly, the researcher’s isotope analysis rules out direct-to-surface gas percolation induced by hydraulic fracturing deep underground. Instead, all of the inferred routes are via failures of engineering in man-made well structures designed to bring gas to the surface. The researchers considered two other routes to contamination, including 1) shallow microbial sources of natural gas (biogenic gas), 2) escape of hydrocarbon gas already present in shallow depths in the aquifier water. Both of these were also ruled out. In total the researchers had considered 7 modes of contamination.  [Full Story]

Sep 24, 2014
Bloomberg presents city-centric climate report to U.N.
Capital New York
David Giambusso

Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg released a report Tuesday at the U.N. climate summit detailing how 228 cities around the world could cut 13 gigatons of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. "This report marks the first time that the collective potential of cities to reduce emissions has really been fully measured," Bloomberg told delegates at the United Nations, where he serves as the secretary general's special envoy for cities and climate change. "But that impact is an achievable goal, not a given. And to reach it, cities have to act boldly, and quickly. So to help them do that, the report we released today also provides guidance to cities on where the biggest opportunities for reductions lie."   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Injuries reported in blast at Wyoming tank owned by Houston company
Fuel Fix
Associated Press

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Authorities say an explosion at a gas storage tank in a western Wyoming gas field has caused an unknown number of injuries. Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Stephen Malik says the blast happened just before 2 p.m. Tuesday about 30 miles northwest of Green River. Malik says the blast happened when a maintenance crew was cleaning out a gas storage tank owned by Houston-based EOG Resources.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
View: On fracking, earthquakes and Indian Point
The Journal News
Ray Beiersdorfer

Growing up in downstate New York, I never felt an earthquake. I think that's true of most New Yorkers, upstate and down. But after I moved to California for graduate studies in Geology, I experienced several temblors. Frankly, they were a bit scary. I had driven many times on the highway and bridge that collapsed, killing 43 people, during the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake in Northern California. When I moved to Northeast Ohio to begin my career as a professor, I expected life to be earthquake-free. Like New York, the area is generally free from earthquakes.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
California Farmers File Suit Alleging Oil Companies' Faulty Wastewater Injection Caused Crop Loss
DeSmog Blog
Mike G

A farming company in Kern County, California, has sued four oil producers over claims that their faulty wastewater injection methods led to the contamination of groundwater it uses for irrigation. Palla Farms LLC, a ninety-two-year-old family farm operation, says it had to tear out hundreds of cherry trees due to high levels of salt and boron in the groundwater it has used to irrigate its crops for the past 25 years. The company claims its almond orchard has also experienced production declines.   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Climate Science is Clear: LNG Export is NOT a Climate Solution!
Oregon Sierra Club Blog
Ted Gleichman

National and Oregon Sierra Club teams, as members of a vibrant coalition of many of Oregon’s most important environmental groups, have now assembled the latest climate science studies to answer one of the most important questions about liquefied natural gas (LNG): We know that the proposed LNG terminals and pipelines in Oregon, and the fracking fields needed to serve them, would cause monumental environmental and economic damage.   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Anti-fracking activists protest Obama (and Clinton)
Capital New York
Clifford Michael

On Tuesday afternoon, about 40 activists rallied outside the Clinton Global Initiative's annual meeting to protest President Obama's support for hydraulic fracturing. “While we give him credit for starting the conversation, the President’s message about climate change holds no real hope because he’s in favor of natural gas," said Sandra Steingraber, co-founder of New Yorkers Against Fracking. “That’s the unholy trinity: coal, oil, and natural gas. We need to tap into clean and renewable energy.”  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Dangerous gas pipelines in MN: A special report
KARE11


GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. - Most people never think about the gas pipelines that run through our cities and neighborhoods – until something catastrophic happens. But nationwide there are tens of thousands of miles of aging pipe in the ground. A joint USA Today - KARE 11 News investigation finds that despite years of warnings, some utilities are not moving fast enough to replace them. In March of this year, a natural gas explosion rocked an entire block of New York City. Eight people were killed and 48 others injured in the blast. The preliminary cause was listed as corrosion in a cast-iron pipe carrying natural gas. Explosions like this are not rare.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Secret lists hide natural gas high risk service areas
wusa9
Russ Ptacek and Erin Van der Bellen

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- A WUSA9/USA TODAY investigation has identified a secret list of risky natural gas pipelines all over the Washington area. WUSA9 is battling to get it, but gas companies and state regulators are fighting releasing the list to the public. redacted list List of addresses showing addresses identifiying high risk underground natural gas pipelines redacted by government officials. (Photo: WUSA9) Our review uncovered the list while researching tens of thousands of miles of aging cast iron and metal pipeline in America's natural gas infrastructure. About 2,000 miles of the cast iron pipelines are in our area.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Hollis selectmen confirm: They don’t want a gas pipeline in town
The Telegraph
David Brooks

HOLLIS – Just in case there was any doubt, the Board of Selectmen has unanimously passed a resolution that they will “take any and all action they deem appropriate to oppose the grant of regulatory approval, before any federal, state, or other regulatory agencies, for the construction, operation and maintenance” of a natural gas pipeline through town.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Pipeline company makes offers, up to $65,000, to property owners along proposed route
Lancaster Online
JOE HAINTHALER |

The company seeking to put a natural gas pipeline through Lancaster County is offering easement payments to property owners before it has even formally applied for federal approval. At least five Lancaster County homeowners were offered payments up to $65,000 for use of their property and one as much as $3,500 upfront if he or she signed an easement agreement with Williams Partners within 60 days.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Natural Gas: Injections Soon To Turn Into Withdrawals
Seeking Alpha
Andrew Hecht

Summary The price of natural gas is volatile. Last year's cold winter depleted inventories. This summer inventories were rebuilt, but remain below last year's level and the five-year average. A cold winter this year will cause natural gas prices to explode.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Judge delays ruling on court order against Ala. paper
USA Today
Kala Kachmar,

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — A Jefferson County judge said he would decide Tuesday whether to remove a temporary restraining order preventing the Montgomery (Ala.) Advertiser from publishing content in a document about the safety of Alabama Gas Corp.'s pipelines. Advertiser and Alagasco attorneys argued their positions at a hearing in Jefferson County District Court on Monday.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Reports: David Cameron to tout fracking role in tackling climate change
Business Green
Will Nichols and Jessica Shankelman

Shale gas can help tackle climate change and should not be restricted by "green tape", David Cameron is expected to tell the UN Climate Summit in New York today. The Prime Minister is among 100 leaders attending the one day event hosted by UN chief Ban Ki-Moon, each of which is expected to deliver a four minute speech outlining how the world can take steps towards agreeing a binding emissions reduction deal at climate talks in Paris next year.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
US oil, gas pipeline companies seek new markets, sources of financing
Platts


The dramatic ramp-up in North American natural gas and oil production, combined with shifting gas flow patterns, such as from LNG exports, signals the need for new investments in pipeline infrastructure, speakers at the Platts Pipeline Development and Expansion conference said Tuesday. Along with the need for new infrastructure comes the need to tap traditional sources of financing as well as develop new ones, panelists at the Houston conference said. Potential investors must weigh the inherent risk that the construction of new pipelines inevitably carries, said Lucien Pugliaresi, president of Energy Policy Research Foundation.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Opponents, Union Workers Clash Over Pipeline Project
The Examiner
Sue Guzman

Proponents and opponents of a controversial natural gas pipeline project mobbed the Muriel Morabito Community Center in Cortlandt last Monday night to weigh in on the controversial Algonquin Pipeline Project being considered by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The public hearing was held to allow comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Spectra Energy Corporation’s proposed project that would run from Stony Point, under the Hudson River, through Peekskill, Cortlandt, portions of Yorktown and into Southeast, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. The proposal, which is being reviewed by FERC, would remove an existing 26-inch gas pipeline and replace it with a 42-inch one.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Vancouver Sun: Concerns over LNG taxation raised by cabinet ministers
Energetic City.ca


The Vancouver Sun is reporting that Northwest BC communities, which stand to reap major economic benefits from the billions invested in the liquefied natural gas industry, are now raising impact concerns. Reporter Jeff Lee said even before any of the 18 filed applications has reached a “final investment decision”, local governments are concerned about being ready for the impact. This story said from rent evictions, to outdated infrastructure, to pressure to provide new facilities and programs, communities like Kitimat, Prince Rupert and Terrace are already feeling the LNG development pressure.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Climate Science is Clear: LNG Export is NOT a Climate Solution!
OR Sierra Club
Ted Gleichman

National and Oregon Sierra Club teams, as members of a vibrant coalition of many of Oregon’s most important environmental groups, have now assembled the latest climate science studies to answer one of the most important questions about liquefied natural gas (LNG): We know that the proposed LNG terminals and pipelines in Oregon, and the fracking fields needed to serve them, would cause monumental environmental and economic damage. But could burning North American natural gas in Asia actually be good for the global climate? NO! Climate science now shows that both LNG export and natural gas production are climate killers – just like every other fossil fuel.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Galveston port reservevs 185 acres for proposed LNG project
Petro Global News


Officials from the Port of Galveston agreed Monday to reserve 185 acres at the port’s Pelican Island site for a proposed $6 billion liquefied natural gas export facility being planned by Texas-based NextDecade Energy. The port’s board of trustees signed an option to lease agreement for the site with a NextDecade subsidiary Tuesday.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
State Sen. and challenger exchange barbs on gun control, fracking
Daily Freeman
William J. Kemble

KINGSTON >> Incumbent state Sen. Ceclia Tkaczyk, D-Daunesburg, and returning Republican challenger George Amedore on Tuesday exchanged campaign barbs that demonstrated a contrast in views. The positions were laid out during an Ulster County Regional Chamber of Commerce breakfast, where the sharpest exchanges came over hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, women’s equality legislation, and whether partisan political interference has prevented local shared services from moving forward.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Drillers using more sand, water for W.Va. wells
Houston Chronicle


MOUNDSVILLE, W.Va. (AP) — Energy companies are using more water and sand to extract natural gas from the Marcellus shale in Marshall and Ohio counties, a new report by a research firm said. Companies working in what's called the "wet gas window" of the two counties are using up to 10 million gallons of water for each project, along with 13 million pounds of sand. That's up from about 4 million gallons of water and 1 million pounds of sand a few years ago, according to the report by Wood Mackenzie. The use of sand for wells in the two counties increased 58 percent between 2012 and 2013 alone, the report shows.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Cuomo says he won’t rush state health officials for fracking study
The Buffalo News
TJ Pignataro

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he’s not in contact with the state Department of Health about its study on the community impacts of hydraulic fracturing and doesn’t plan to be. “When it’s ready, it’s ready,” Cuomo said Tuesday afternoon in a meeting with reporters and editors at The Buffalo News. “I’m not going to rush them.” The process extracts natural gas by pushing large volumes of water, chemicals and sand under pressure deep within the earth. New York has had a moratorium on fracking since an environmental review was launched in 2008.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Fracking opponents hopeful of pause on shale gas development in New Brunswick
680 News
The Canadian Press

FREDERICTON – The Liberal victory in New Brunswick will provide a needed break in the development of the shale gas industry, say opponents of hydraulic fracturing who vowed to hold the party to its promise to impose a moratorium on the disputed practice. Lois Corbett of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick said Liberal Leader Brian Gallant’s win in Monday’s provincial election will give politicians and experts time to study fracking while slowing growth of the shale gas sector. “This pause for the right debate is exactly what we need at this time,” she said.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Texas oil field work proving deadly for employees
San Antonio Express News


On a cold January morning, Daniel Zambrano drove a company van with six co-workers from an isolated fracking site along Texas 72 in the Eagle Ford Shale, blasting the heat as he headed for a nearby hotel. The close-knit crew, family men from all across Texas, had just completed a 24-hour shift at a natural gas site near the tiny town of Tilden.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Six Major Oil & Gas Firms Agree To Cut Potent Methane Emissions Ahead Of UN Climate Change Summit
International Business Times
Maria Gallucci

Six international oil and gas companies have agreed to slash their emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. The energy firms will partner with more than a dozen countries on the United Nations-led initiative, which was announced Tuesday at the U.N. climate change summit in New York City.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Oil company, Windsor at odds over planned drilling site
Coloradoan
Adrian D. Garcia,

Great Western Oil and Gas Co. no longer wants to comply with Windsor’s regulations for drilling operations, Mayor John Vazquez said Monday, Sept. 22. The Town of Windsor is working to annex the property west of Larimer County Road 13 before Great Western gets approval from the state to begin oil and gas operations on the land. The Denver-based company previously said it would voluntarily accept the town’s restrictions for the project, but on Monday Vazquez told residents that Great Western has changed its mind.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Oil permits in Fort Berthold to increase
Bakken.com
Lydia Gilbertson

Last week the United States Senate passed legislation with the goal of accelerating the process used to approve North Dakota oil and gas drilling permits. The legislation is called the BLM Management Permit Processing Improvement Act. This act is in place over concerns about federal lands on mainly the Fort Berthold Reservation. As a result the Bureau of Land Management will increase its offices in the Bakken as well as extending its residence by 10 years in its Sydney, Montana office. Prior to the BLM Management Permit Processing Improvement Act it took three to nine months for a drilling permit to be approved on federally owned land. One third of oil production in North Dakota is located on the Fort Berthold Reservation. This bill theoretically will not only make it easier to develop land in North Dakota, but will also speed up approvals for natural gas capture systems and pipelines in order to decrease flaring.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Fracking in North Dakota: Women in the drilling boomtowns
Washington Post
Nicole Crowder

North Dakota’s oil industry currently employs more than 40,000 people. Williston, formerly a sleepy town in the northwestern part of the state, has rocketed on the scene as the sixth largest city in the 48th most populous state primarily because of the controversial oil and gas drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing technology or “fracking.” The recent ability to tap into the Bakken formation—a thin but wide shale layer that sits two miles along the Williston Basin—opened an opportunity for the town to take a seat at the head of the oil-drilling table. It’s now poised to be the biggest boomtown in the country, with a population estimated to soar from 10,000 to just fewer than 50,000 by 2025. Fracking has brought in an influx of oil workers—many of them women—from across the country attracted to the high salaries and burgeoning housing market created to accommodate the surge in residents. The result is the town’s population has nearly doubled in the past 10 years. The city commission passed a record $250 million budget for 2015 on September 9th of this year, up from $53 million in 2012. Photographer Maud Delaflotte spent three weeks photographing women who were either from Williston or migrated there alone or with families to find the jobs. Her essay asks What if this newly discovered, magic answer is flawed? What if the new El Dorado is only a passing mirage?   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
ALEC Is Lying About Climate Change Google Chairman Tells Diane Rehm
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Google got in a lot of hot water with climate activists for its membership in the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the lobbying organization that writes “model legislation” favoring corporate interests. Chairman Eric Schmidt told National Public Radio’s Diane Rehm Monday that Google’s support of the group was a “mistake,” and that ALEC was spreading lies about climate change, “making the world a much worse place.”   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Solar and Wind Outshine Fossil Fuels
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

A major U.S. investment bank’s latest analysis shows that even without subsidies, wind and solar energy are on track to be competitive with fossil-fuel and nuclear power sources in the U.S.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
SHELBY TOWNSHIP: Township amends moratorium on residential drilling operations
Source Newspapers
Sean Delaney

At its Sept. 16 meeting, the Shelby Township Board of Trustees unanimously passed an amended six-month moratorium on oil, gas and other hydrocarbon exploration and related extraction activities within the township. "Residents may recall that last month our township passed a moratorium regarding some drilling activities," said Shelby Township Supervisor Richard Stathakis. "Tonight I'm asking the Board of Trustees to approve a moratorium that will now prohibit, during a six-month period, additional activities associated with drilling operations."  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Study Finds Fracking Workers Exposed to Dangerous Benzene Levels: Should You Be Concerned?
Frackinginjurylaw.com


A recent study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has found that workers at hydraulic fracturing or fracking sites may be routinely exposed to dangerous levels of the cancer-causing chemical benzene. Benzene is a clear or light yellow liquid that is a component in fracking fluid. NIOSH and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have set the safe level for workplace benzene exposure at 0.1 of a part per million. However, NIOSH’s measurements of benzene levels above open tanks at fracking sites found levels that were well over this amount. NIOSH researchers visited six oil and gas sites in Colorado and Wyoming in the spring and summer of 2013. The study specifically surveyed exposure risks for oil and gas workers during the phase of extraction called flowback. This phase occurs after the well is drilled and hydraulically fractured to start the flow of oil and gas. Flowback fluid which contains wastewater, sand, oil, gas, fracking fluid chemicals and water is recovered through the well bore and separated into component parts. Oil and gas are removed and stored in production tanks. Fracking chemicals that can be reused are also removed the fluid. Waste fluids are stored in flowback tanks until they can be disposed of.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Fort Collins, CO., Considers Filing Appeal to Uphold Fracking Moratorium
forexminute.com
Jonathan Millet

A month after Larimer County judge declared Fort Collins City Council’s five-year ban on hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, invalid, the council is debating whether to file an appeal against the ruling. The council was scheduled to vote on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, on a resolution directing the city attorney to appeal against the decision, which reversed the ordinance that was approved by voters in November 2013, reports the Coloradoan. Colorado Oil and Gas Association (COGA) sued the council at Larimer County District Court, resulting in the reversal of the decision, on grounds that a 1951 act declared oil and gas exploitation a key state objective in Colorado.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Frustrated Denton Councilman sees fracking ban as the only option
Dallas Business Journal
Nicholas Sakelaris

Denton City Councilman Kevin Roden hears plenty of criticism of the Denton frack ban, but very few solutions. That includes from the Denton Chamber of Commerce, the Texas Railroad Commission and the oil and gas industry itself, Roden wrote in a blog on his website. The problem is that Denton has old abandoned oil wells all over the city, including near established neighborhoods, that could be redrilled as horizontal Barnett Shale wells, which require hydraulic fracking. The city’s ordinance, including its 1,200-foot setback requirement, is powerless to stop companies from drilling and fracking these wells -- no matter how close they are to homes -- because they are vested.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
N. Carolina county weighing in on proposed fracking regs
Eaglefordtexas.com
Shane Thielges

DURHAM — County officials will tell the state its draft regulations for the fracking industry aren’t tough enough, especially when it comes to allowing local governments a place at the table. “The bottom line, we feel, is the proposed rules do not adequately protect human health and the environment, nor do they adequately allow local government to participate in the siting, regulatory or emergency management aspects of fracking,” said Tobin Freid, Durham’s sustainability manager.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Santa Barbara County anti-fracking activists wildly outspent
CalCoastNews


The proponents of a ballot measure calling for a ban on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in Santa Barbara County are being outspent on the campaign trail by a ratio of more than 20 to 1. [KEYT] If passed, Measure P would prohibit high intensity oil and gas production in unincorporated Santa Barbara County. Such practices, which include fracking, typically involve injecting steam into oil wells. No fracking has been reported to be occurring in Santa Barbara County, but opponents of the measure have raised nearly $2 million fighting it. In the latest campaign finance report, the No on P campaign has raised $1,950,000, while the Yes on P campaign has brought in a meager $95,000. The opponents of the ballot measure say their funds come largely from county taxpayers, landowners and the oil and gas industry. Supporters of the initiative say they receive small, individual donations.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
A climate change answer in the wind
New York Daily News
JOHN DURSO

I n the wake of the People’s Climate March — and with world leaders descending on the UN to make pledges to reduce greenhouse gas emissions — the city is abuzz with talk about how to move toward cleaner, sustainable energy. On Monday, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund announced plans to divest its millions from fossil fuels. New York has a precious opportunity to move decisively toward environmentally sound power generation — while producing thousands of well-paying jobs in a region that needs them desperately. It’s called Deepwater One, and it would be one of the first offshore wind farms in the United States. Located roughly 30 miles east of Montauk, L.I., the turbines would capture the strong winds in the deep Atlantic Ocean waters. They would not be visible from shore and could provide 200 megawatts of renewable energy to the Long Island Power Authority. All those who descended on the streets of Manhattan this past weekend to sound the climate alarm should be foursquare behind this project. And so should those for whom producing high-quality jobs is a bigger priority than safeguarding the environment. To envision the potential of offshore wind power, all one needs to do is look to Europe. Today, roughly 60,000 people are employed by Europe’s still-growing, multibillion-dollar offshore wind industry, with dozens of wind farms off the coasts of the United Kingdom and elsewhere. Entire cities have been transformed into industrial hubs for these green jobs. By 2020, some 191,000 people are expected to be working in the industry. No offshore wind farms have yet been built here, but the potential is exciting: The U.S. Energy Department estimates that nearly 40,000 workers could be employed in the industry on the East Coast by 2030. Deepwater One is an ideal place to start. Tuesday, the Long Island Power Authority is scheduled to meet for the first time to consider the project. For a region damaged so severely by Hurricane Sandy, the environmental reasons for embracing zero-emissions energy production should be obvious. Our union members were on the front lines of the devastation and cleanup from that disaster; many are still repairing their homes and recovering financially. The economic reasons are equally apparent. As unionists, we maintain a strong commitment to representing members employed by utilities currently powered by traditional fuels. Unionized jobs associated with power plants, electrical and gas transmission and the maintenance of these facilities are part of the foundation of communities across New York State. Nevertheless, we cannot forgo the economic and environmental opportunities associated with sustainable energy, a growing economic engine worldwide. If our state and region lead in the green economy, we will help create countless jobs of the future with the resilience to withstand economic shocks. New York State — and in particular, Long Island — have the potential to be at the forefront of a new homegrown industry. We begin with a large pool of skilled workers. From welding to construction, fabrication to assembly, these are jobs that are our members are ready, willing and able to handle. Long Island should be a hub of offshore wind development. With our strategic location centered on the East Coast and an advanced supply chain from the aerospace industry, the region is poised to lead. Gov. Cuomo declared this “Climate Week” in New York State. He can take a huge step forward himself by becoming the chief champion of Deepwater One. Let’s put our men and women back to work — on a project that could propel a new American energy industry. Durso is the president of the Long Island Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, and the president of Local 338, RWDSU/UFCW.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
As protesters rally to 'stop capitalism,' corporate leaders plot a path to a low-carbon future.
The Daily Climate
Marianne Lavelle

NEW YORK – Two views of multinational corporations and their role in the climate crisis clashed in the world's financial capital Monday. Thousands of protesters converged on lower Manhattan in a "flood Wall Street" action, with a rallying cry to "stop capitalism" – described by organizers as "the root cause" of the crisis. At the same time in midtown Manhattan, a 90-year-old museum and library dedicated to the memory of financier J.P. Morgan played host as executives from some of the most successful companies on Earth pledged to lead the way to a low-carbon future.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
The meager sum total of Obama's environmental policies
Deutsche Welle


Activists hope for clear words from US President Obama when the climate summit begins Tuesday in New York. To date, his environmental policies have been a disappointment for many US citizens. Fracking and solar energy Pleased as many of the protesters at Sunday's New York march were at the planned carbon emissions regulations, they still worry about plenty of other issues, including fracking, which involves injecting water, sand and chemicals to break apart underground rocks to release oil and gas. "Hey, Obama, we need no fracking drama," they chanted. The level of support for solar energy was another contentious issue.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Ads lash out at bus trip to fracking hearing
News Observer
Craig Jarvis

A coalition of environmental groups formed to launch an ad campaign against fracking is out with a new radio spot about the busing of people to a public hearing 200 miles away, including one man who said he came from a homeless shelter and several who didn’t seem to know why they were there. “They’re at it again,” a male narrator says in the ad. “Looks like the oil and gas guys are so morally bankrupt they’re busing homeless people to public hearings on fracking, hoodwinking them into wearing pro-fracking T-shirts because they’re so desperate for supporters.”   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Cuomo says he won’t rush state health officials for fracking study
Buffalo News
TJ Pignataro

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he’s not in contact with the state Department of Health about its study on the community impacts of hydraulic fracturing and doesn’t plan to be. “When it’s ready, it’s ready,” Cuomo said Tuesday afternoon in a meeting with reporters and editors at The Buffalo News. “I’m not going to rush them.”   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Fracking Wastewater Could Encourage Formation Of Toxic Compounds During Drinking Water Disinfection
Chemical & Engineering News
Melissae Fellet

Some natural gas extraction operations have sent the highly saline water left over from hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, to wastewater treatment plants for disposal. These plants then discharge their treated water into rivers that may feed drinking water plants downstream. A new study finds a possible problem with this process: Even when made 10,000 times more dilute, fracking wastewater can increase levels of troubling compounds formed under conditions similar to those during drinking water disinfection (Environ. Sci. Technol. 2014, DOI: 10.102/es50281841). Halides in the wastewater lead to toxic disinfection by-products, some at levels that exceed allowed discharge limits for drinking water treatment plants, the researchers say.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Exclusive: Bakken producers to push for status quo at crude oil hearing
Reuters
ERNEST SCHEYDER

(Reuters) - Hess Corp and other major North Dakota oil producers will tell the state's top energy regulators on Tuesday that existing field practices used to prepare Bakken crude for rail transport are safe and that tighter standards could actually do more harm than good. The comments, to be delivered at a special hearing of the North Dakota Industrial Commission (NDIC), come as federal, state and local officials grapple with how best to ensure the safe transport of the state's crude oil, which has been linked to a string of fiery crude-by-rail explosions, including one last year in Quebec that killed 47 people.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Look out below: Danger lurks underground from aging gas pipes EVEN SMALL CRACKS OR ACCIDENTS CAN TRIGGER A DESTRUCTIVE EXPLOSION.
USA TODAY
John Kelley

About every other day over the past decade, a gas leak in the United States has destroyed property, hurt someone or killed someone, a USA TODAY Network investigation finds. The most destructive blasts have killed at least 135 people, injured 600 and caused $2 billion in damages since 2004. The death toll includes: • The explosion that leveled part of a New York City block in East Harlem in March, killing eight and injuring 48 more.  [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
News & Notes: Town council votes to ban fracking
Daily Princetonian


The Princeton town council passed an ordinance banning fracking throughout the town at a council meeting on Monday. The ordinance, which was passed by a vote of 5-1, makes Princeton the first town in Mercer County and the second town in New Jersey to ban fracking, which critics say causes significant damage to the environment.   [Full Story]

Sep 23, 2014
Finding value in mine water
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Laura Legere

SCRANTON — The nuns who founded Marywood University in 1915 paid the mining company that sold them the land to leave pillars of coal untouched beneath their campus to ensure that the ground wouldn't give way. A century later, the school drilled two wells into the abandoned, flooded mine to draw water. The water circulates through a system that cools the studios in its environmentally sustainable School of Architecture building.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Derailed: Railroad delays first responders on riverside oil spill
FOX 31 Denver
CHRIS HALSNE

DENVER — FOX31 Denver has confirmed a May 9 crude oil train car derailment near LaSalle, Colorado polluted area groundwater with toxic levels of benzene. Environmental Protection Agency records from July show benzene measurements as high as 144 parts per billion near the crash site. Five parts per billion is considered the safe limit. Federal accident records also show six Union Pacific tankers ripped apart from the train and flipped into a ditch due to a “track misalignment caused by a soft roadbed.” One of the tankers cracked and spilled approximately7,000 gallons of Niobrara crude, according to the EPA.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
It's time for real eminent domain reform
The Texas Tribune
Calvin Tillman

Many Texans may remember me, the former mayor of the small town of DISH in the Barnett Shale, for bringing attention to the health and environmental impacts of fracking a few years ago. But those concerns weren’t the only menace that DISH residents faced when I was mayor. As natural gas companies laid miles of pipeline throughout town, the threat of eminent domain loomed large. Maybe I was naïve, but as mayor I was shocked to learn that private, for-profit companies could so easily acquire land through eminent domain, especially in a supposedly pro-property-rights state like Texas. It seemed un-American to me to see private property transferred from one private entity to another merely to benefit shareholders, not the general public. One DISH resident, for instance, had three large pipeline easements taken across his property, destroying any future land use.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Fossil Fuels Get Huge Master Limited Partnership Tax Breaks – “Green” Energy Shut Out
DC Bureau
Peter Mantius

Since 2008, investors have poured several hundred billion dollars into fossil fuel-related master limited partnerships that shield income from virtually all corporate taxation. The MLP tax loophole — a sort of reverse carbon tax — has heavily subsidized the nation’s ongoing oil and natural gas fracking boom. Solar, wind and other renewable energy companies are not eligible for the MLP tax dodge. Although bipartisan support is building in Congress to extend the tax deductions to them, insiders say legislation to do so will most likely have to wait for and be a part of a comprehensive tax reform package, which has proven elusive. Until then, existing incentives will serve as a drag on the U.S. economy’s transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources. As long as Congress fails to act, fossil fuels will continue to exploit their government-approved competitive advantage even as mounting evidence shows their use accelerates global warming and prompts calls to tax carbon.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
LIVE coverage: Princeton votes to ban fracking throughout town
Times of Trenton
Nicole Mulvaney

RINCETON—Council will vote on whether to become the first Mercer County town to ban fracking. The process of hydraulic fracturing extracts natural gas by pumping water and chemicals into underground shale formations, fracturing the rock and releasing the natural gas. Supporters say it produces cheaper, cleaner gas while critics say it poses a host of environmental dangers.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Rockefellers and others annouce $50 billion divestment from fossil fuels
Al Jazeera America
Rene Lewis

A philanthropic organization of the Rockefeller family, along with a coalition of hundreds of other institutions and individuals, have announced a total of $50 billion in divestments from the fossil fuel industry amid efforts to fight climate change, according to a report released Monday. Stephen Heintz, head of the foundation started by John D. Rockefeller — who made his fortune in oil in the early 20th century — said he believed the divestment would be in line with the oil tycoon’s business sense. “We are quite convinced that if he were alive today, as an astute businessman looking out to the future, he would be moving out of fossil fuels and investing in clean, renewable energy,” said Heintz. The divestment announcement by the Global Divest-Invest Coalition came a day before world leaders gather at the United Nations Climate Summit in New York City to pledge actions meant to avoid the worst effects of global warming. It followed a global climate protest by hundreds of thousands of people around the world Sunday, with demonstrators calling on their governments to take action.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
‘Flood Wall Street’ Protesters Say Root Cause Of Climate Change Is Unchecked Capitalism
ThinkProgress
ARI PHILLIPS

NEW YORK, NEW YORK — On Monday, a day after nearly 400,000 marchers gathered for the largest climate march in history, activists and protesters turned their attention to the many links between capitalism and climate change by flooding Wall Street with supporters. By early afternoon Monday, several thousand people were gathered just down the street from Wall Street around the iconic Charging Bull statue. They waved flags, chanted, and sat down on the street to draw attention to what they consider to be the primary cause of climate change. The scene was far more tense than that of the previous day; two people were reportedly arrested for trying to cross a police barricade and several journalists and activists reported on Twitter that the NYPD used pepper spray on protesters rushing a barricade.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Global Warming Concerns Grow
New York Times
Marjorie Connelly

While few Americans regard the environment as the nation’s foremost challenge, most say it should be a priority, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. And more than half say global warming is caused by human behavior, the highest level ever recorded by the national poll.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
The media’s shameful climate omission: Sunday shows completely ignore historic march
Salon
JOANNA ROTHKOPF

On Sunday, celebrities, politicians and scores of civilians took to the streets of Manhattan as part of the People’s Climate March, a massive demonstration meant to raise awareness about the immediate concerns of climate change. While organizers expected 100,000 demonstrators to show, the streets of the Upper West Side were flooded with approximately 400,000 concerned citizens, waving banners, chanting and banging drums. Among the star-studded list of attendees were Jane Goodall, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Leonardo DiCaprio, Al Gore and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. But the Sunday news shows didn’t even mention that it was happening. Media Matters reports:  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Drill down on hydrofracking
Rochester Democrat & Chronicle
Editorial

One of the benefits of political campaigns is that they focus attention — both voters’ and candidates’ — on specific issues. So New York’s gubernatorial race might be just the thing to finally fix Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s gaze on an issue he has long ignored: hydrofracking. It is surprising enough that the characteristically decisive governor has gone his entire term without taking a stand on the fiercely debated natural gas-drilling method. It would be a disservice to voters for him to continue to play possum on the issue while seeking reelection.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Indigenous groups call for drilling limits to fight climate change
Al Jazeera America
Kaelyn Forde

Patricia Gualinga stood on Pier 25 next to the Hudson River, her face painted in fine geometric designs, her long black hair hanging past her waist, looking out at the shadows cast by the skyscrapers of lower Manhattan over the water. An indigenous Kichwa woman from the Sarayaku community deep in the Ecuadorean Amazon, Gualinga traveled more than 3,000 miles to push the world’s leaders to take an active stance on climate change. Hundreds of indigenous leaders from communities around the globe have converged on New York for the first high-level World Conference on Indigenous Peoples, being held Monday and Tuesday during the United Nations General Assembly. Gualinga said she went both to represent Saryaku and to share the community’s victory; through a decades-long court battle in the Costa Rica–based Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the approximately 1,200 residents of Sarayaku succeeded in 2012 in blocking oil exploration in there. Now Gualinga and her community want to help other groups prevent similar drilling initiatives in a bid to prevent climate change. “We have a proposal that’s based on scientists’ reports that say that 50 percent of known petroleum reserves around the world need to stay underground to avoid raising the earth’s temperature even more,” she said, referring to a figure from the International Energy Agency’s 2012 World Energy Investment Outlook. “So what are we waiting for? You can begin with us. We have been resisting for years, we don’t want petroleum exploration, and we don’t want more contamination of our lands.”  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Desmond Tutu: It’s Time to ‘Move Beyond the Fossil Fuel Era’
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

This weekend, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a long-time advocate for the environment, released a powerful video urging the world leaders in New York City for the UN Climate Summit to “move beyond the fossil fuel era.”  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Siemens Makes $7.6 Billion Bet on Fracking in U.S.
Dealbook
Jack Ewing & Stanley Reed

FRANKFURT — The German engineering conglomerate Siemens already makes a range of products for the American energy sector, including gas turbines and equipment for generating electricity from wind. But in acquiring the Dresser-Rand Group, a Houston-based oil services company, in a $7.6 billion deal announced Sunday night, Siemens signaled an even bigger push into the booming American sector. The deal also demonstrated how much big corporate suitors are willing to pay for companies with a strong market niche.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Fracking is safe if...
Columbus Dispatch
Editorial

A study led by an Ohio State University scientist and published in a national journal last Monday has good news for Ohio’s economy: If done correctly, the method of drilling for oil and gas known as horizontal fracking, which is fueling a jobs-and-energy boom, doesn’t pose a danger to drinking-water supplies. But the study’s findings also imply a serious responsibility: Because poorly constructed wells can allow groundwater contamination after fracking, Ohio must be vigilant in enforcing up-to-date regulations on how wells are constructed.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
MacArthur Delves Deeper into Climate and Fracking
Inside Philantrhropy
Tate Williams

MacArthur has traditionally been a conservation-focused environment funder, with support for climate change work peppered (liberally) throughout its other programs. But two huge grants to the Environmental Defense Fund related to clean energy and fracking signal something bigger might be on the way. Is MacArthur the next big climate and energy funder? Two recent "exploratory" grants totaling $6 million suggest it’s entirely possible.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Public hearings are over, so now what for fracking in NC?
Carolina Public Press
Paul Clark

So now that the last public hearing on the rules governing possible fracking in North Carolina has taken place, what’s next? Two things are top of the list – what the Mining and Energy Commission must do, as laid out by law, and what some speakers at the recent hearing held in Cullowhee hope the commission will do. First, the former.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Researchers Say More Scientific Study Needed On Fracking
The Bakken


Scientists studying fracking compounds say their research raises concerns about several commonly used ingredients. According to results released in August during the 248th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), little is known about the potential health risks on one-third of the compounds used for fracking.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Councillors vote to retain fracking ban
Leitrim Observer


Leitrim’s County Councillors have unanimously voted to maintain a ban on fracking in Leitrim’s new County Development Plan for 2015 to 2021. A number of councillors, working with anti-fracking campaigners, scientific and legal experts, drafted an updated wording to replace the existing ban in the new Development Plan.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Local environmentalists raise climate concerns in rally
Daily Tarheel
Holly West

On the eve of a United Nations summit on climate change in New York City, about 200 people gathered in Chapel Hill’s Peace and Justice Plaza Sunday afternoon to raise awareness for environmental issues. The demonstration drew a diverse crowd — grannies, rabbis, pastors, vegans and students.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
State to hold public hearing on oil drilling permit application in St. Tammany
Times-Picayune
Robert Rhoden

In an unusual move, the state Office of Conservation has agreed to hold a public hearing in St. Tammany Parish to gather public comment on Helis Oil & Gas Co.'s application for a permit to drill a well near Mandeville. The hearing was requested by the town of Abita Springs and the group Concerned Citizens of St. Tammany, which is fighting the oil company's proposal to drill a well northeast of Mandeville and use the controversial fracking method to extract oil.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Fracktivists urge President Obama to change his thinking on drilling
Legislative Gazette
Roger Hannigan Gilson

Americans Against Fracking, a coalition of more than 200 organizations opposed to the controversial drilling technique, called on President Barack Obama to change the course of his energy policy ahead of the People's Climate March in New York City on Sept. 21. In a conference call with media last Tuesday morning, a panel addressed new research on hydrofracking's release of methane gas and took a hard stance against using fracked natural gas as a "bridge fuel" to clean energy  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
The Rockefellers’ huge climate announcement
MSNBC


The Rockefellers, a family whose fortune was built on oil, has announced that its major charity will divest from fossil fuels. Chris Hayes and guests discuss this major climate news.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
More than 100 arrested at Flood Wall Street rally
Capital
Azi Paybarah & Conor Skelding

More than 100 people were arrested tonight, and others were pepper-sprayed, at the end of a daylong demonstration in the city's financial district to protest what they say is Wall Street's role in driving climate change. The protests, dubbed Flood Wall Street, echoed the Occupy Wall Street movement, only with a direct focus on climate change and divestment from the fossil fuel industry.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Protesters flood Wall Street to protest climate change
Capital
David Giamusso

Thousands of activists marched through the Financial District Monday morning, gathering around the Wall Street Bull and along Broadway to protest Wall Street's investment in fossil fuels. The demonstration came one day after more than 310,000 people marched in New York City for climate change.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Mayor de Blasio Takes On Climate Change
New York Times
Opinion/Editorial

“Mayor de Blasio Commits to 80 Percent Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 2050,” said the Sunday news release, outlining what would be a truly impressive feat if he actually were able to make good on that promise. But there is not going to be any 89-year-old, 10-term mayor named de Blasio declaring a local victory in the battle to save the planet. This is a long march to a distant goal. The commitment Mr. de Blasio made over the weekend — an excellent and necessary one — was to do his part now to keep the city moving in the right direction: Promised Land, that way.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Heirs to Rockefeller oil fortune divest from fossil fuels over climate change
The Guardian


The heirs to the fabled Rockefeller oil fortune withdrew their funds from fossil fuel investments on Monday, lending a symbolic boost to a $50bn divestment campaign ahead of a United Nations summit on climate change. The former vice-president, Al Gore, will present the divestment commitments to world leaders, making the case that investments in oil and coal have an uncertain future. With Monday’s announcement, more than 800 global investors – including foundations such as the Rockefeller Brothers, religious groups, healthcare organisations, cities and universities – have pledged to withdraw a total of $50bn from fossil fuel investments over the next five years.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
New $6B LNG export facility could be built in Galveston
Houston Business Journal
Olivia Pulsinelli

A local company reportedly is considering building a $6 billion liquefied natural gas export facility on Pelican Island, north of Galveston Island. The Woodlands-based NextDecade is in the “final stages” of securing financing for the project, which would be on 185 acres on the northeast corner of Pelican Island, the Houston Chronicle reports. The Galveson Wharves trustees are expected to consider on Sept. 22 whether to lease the land to NextDecade.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
County weighing in on proposed fracking regs
The Herald Sun
Ray Gronberg

DURHAM - County officials will tell the state its draft regulations for the fracking industry aren’t tough enough, especially when it comes to allowing local governments a place at the table. “The bottom line, we feel, is the proposed rules do not adequately protect human health and the environment, nor do they adequately allow local government to participate in the siting, regulatory or emergency management aspects of fracking,” said Tobin Freid, Durham’s sustainability manager. Freid and other administrators were seeking, and got, a County Commissioners go-ahead on Monday to submit comments on the draft rules to N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The submission deadline is Sept. 30, the comments ultimately to go to the N.C. Mining and Energy Commission, the panel that’s writing the rules that will govern natural-gas drilling in North Carolina. Fracking refers to a specific drilling technology called “hydraulic fracturing.” In it, drillers inject water and chemicals into wells at high pressure to break up deep-under-the-surface rock and release the gas trapped there.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Sunoco: W. Pa. creek cleanup of drilling sludge ongoing
Daily Local News


FINLEYVILLE, Pa. (AP) — Sunoco Pipeline says it is making progress in cleaning up gray sludge that spilled into a southwestern Pennsylvania creek. The spill was reported Thursday into the Little Mingo Creek and was contained by Saturday. Sunoco spokesman Jeffrey Shields tells the (Washington) Observer-Reporter of Washington (http://bit.ly/1qZRGA4 ) that the nontoxic bentonite clay doesn’t appear to have harmed wildlife in the area.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Maine LNG Terminal Flipping for Exports
Roll Call
Randy Leonard

Attracting little notice, Downeast LNG submitted a request this summer to build a $2 billion bi-directional LNG terminal at Mill Cove in Robbinston, Maine, on Passamaquoddy Bay. Downeast had proposed an import terminal at the location in 2005 and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in May issued a final environmental impact statement for the import portion of the project, concluding that “most impacts in the project area would be avoided or reduced to less than significant levels.”  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
$1M jury award to western ND ranch for oil drilling impacts could cost industry in future
Prairie Business
Mike Nowatzki

BISMARCK – A jury verdict awarding $1 million to the owners of a western North Dakota hunting ranch who claimed that oil drilling turned their pristine landscape into “an industrial zone” could set a costly precedent for the state’s booming oil industry.Deadwood Canyon Ranch LLP sued Fidelity Exploration & Production Co., an affiliate of Bismarck-based MDU Resources Group Inc., in October 2010, claiming $3 million in damages for breach of contract and damages to its property as a result of two wells drilled on the ranch between Stanley and New Town in Mountrail County.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
What the Climate Change Protests Mean for Chefs
Yahoo News
Rachel Tepper

Hundreds of thousands of environmental demonstrators thronged the streets of New York City for the People’s Climate March Sunday, timed to precede a United Nations summit on climate change. Among them—and celebrities such as Leonardo Dicaprio, Mark Ruffalo, Sting, and Edward Norton—were a number of people from the food industry. "I’m marching because everything that affects the weather and the earth affects food," chef Heather Carlucci, who co-founded the anti-fracking group Chefs for the Marcellus, wrote us in an email prior to the event. “As food professionals, I think we have a certain responsibility to take a stand and fight for what affects what we do and how it changes our work, our health, and our lives.”  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Environmentalists hope Obama will take stronger stance at climate summit
Al Jazeera America
Peter Moskowitz

Ahead of a day-long climate summit scheduled to take place on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, a portrait of a conflicted Obama administration has emerged. While President Obama and his advisors have spoken more about climate change than any other administration, and pushed for new limits on the amount of carbon dioxide cars and power plants can emit, Obama has also presided over one of the biggest increases in oil and gas production in the United States in decades. And some environmentalists say the administration has set its goals too low, not putting enough effort into passing significant climate legislation.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
Schneiderman to call for new steps on climate change
Capital New York
SCOTT WALDMAN

ALBANY—Attorney General Eric Schneiderman wants the state to formalize a more aggressive, sustained local reaction climate change. At an event this morning at the New York City Bar Association, Schneiderman will call for more laws to address climate change, according to an advanced copy of his remarks obtained by Capital. He will say it is largely up to state and local governments to shape legislation that helps communities address the extreme weather changes that are already here, such as record rainfalls and flooding. Schneiderman, whose remarks come a day after a major climate march, expects to increasing the focus of his office on combatting climate change. Earlier this month, he released a report showing an increasing frequency of extreme rainfall amounts.  [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
DEP Fines Range Resources $4.15 Million For Violating Environmental Regulations
PA Environment Digest


The Department of Environmental Protection Thursday announced it has signed a wide-ranging consent order and agreement with Range Resources for violations at six of its Washington County impoundments. The consent order requires the company to pay a $4.15 million fine, the largest against an oil and gas operator in the state’s shale drilling era, close five impoundments and upgrade two other impoundments to meet heightened “next generation” standards currently under development at DEP.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
House Resolution Requires Study Of Wind, Natural Gas, Energy Impacts In PA
PA Environment Digest


House Resolution 925 (Rapp-R-Forest) directing the Joint State Government Commission to study the impact of wind turbines, as compared to coal, natural gas, oil and nuclear power, in Pennsylvania, in particular on migratory birds and of forest removal was adopted by the House 181 to 11 Wednesday.   [Full Story]

Sep 22, 2014
DEP Citizens Advisory Council Receives Update On Oil And Gas Program
PA Environment Digest


Scott Perry, DEP Deputy Secretary For Oil and Gas Management, gave DEP’s Citizens Advisory Council an update on the Oil and Gas Regulatory Program. Auditor General Eugene DePasquale was scheduled to make a presentation to Council on his agency’s audit of the Marcellus Shale Water Protection Programs, but canceled at the last minute. Perry pointed to dramatic increases in field inspections made by DEP which since 2008 increased from 1,262 to nearly 13,400 in 2013. As a result, he said, the number of violations has dropped significantly from 25 percent of operations to 4 percent as drilling operators became more familiar with DEP oil and gas regulations.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Shale gas extraction issues go beyond fracking
Power Source
Anya Litvak

Ask oil and gas industry advocates, environmentalists and regulators about the biggest issues facing shale gas development, and none are likely to cite the possibility of fracking fluids traveling up thousands of feet of rock into groundwater aquifers as their top concern. There’s surface spills, transportation accidents, leaks in holding tanks and impoundments — all of these have much more potential to pollute groundwater. Yet blaming — or exonerating — fracking for this method of groundwater pollution seems to lead reports of new shale studies, even if those studies say little about actual fracking.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Primary results a referendum on fracking
Poughkeepsie Journal
Jimmy Buff

A couple of weeks ago, this column didn’t run. In keeping with the newspaper’s policy, it was deemed an endorsement of Zephyr Teachout in the democratic primary against Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Unlike some newspapers, the Poughkeepsie Journal doesn’t endorse primary candidates. The gist of the column was that if you were anti-fracking, you had only one real choice when it came to casting your ballot in the primary: Teachout. The challenger went on to lose to the incumbent that day, but it wasn’t a walk in the park for Cuomo.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Worried About Climate Change? Ban Fracking on Federal Lands
Truth-Out
Wenonah Hauter--Opinion

As world leaders get ready to gather in New York City for the United Nations Climate Summit, it’s time to take stock of how the United States is meeting its own climate challenges. While the UN has the power to help forge a world with good jobs, clean air and water, and healthy communities, there’s one step that federal officials here in the United States can take on their own to curb climate change: They can ban fracking on federal lands.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Thirsty wells: Fracking consumes billions of gallons of water
Times Reporter
Shane Hoover

Drillers in Ohio have used more than 4 billion gallons of water to frack horizontal shale wells since 2011. That's a lot of water. Enough to fill one two-liter soda bottle for every person on the planet; or in terms that motorists in shale country can relate to, 800,000 tanker-loads of water.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
300,000+ Demand Climate Action Now at Largest Climate March in World History
EcoWatch
Stefanie Spear

Today in New York City more than 300,000 people attended what is now known as the largest climate action in world history. The march in New York City was by far the largest of the 2,808 People’s Climate rallies that took place today in 166 countries from around the world. From the crowded streets of New Delhi to Melbourne to Johannesburg, hundreds of thousands of people took part in the weekend’s global events.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Hundreds of thousands turn out for People’s Climate March
Capital
David Giambusso

Organizers of the People's Climate March estimate 310,000 people showed up to the Sunday protest as marchers sought to grab the attention of world leaders two days before a U.N. climate summit called by Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who himself joined the march. By noon, the crowd stretched for miles uptown from Columbus Circle along Central Park West. Officials said the line went as far uptown as 96th street and while the first marchers set out shortly after 11:30, the back of the line did not move until after 1:30 p.m.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Siemens Agrees to Buy Dresser-Rand, an Oil Services Company, for $7.6 Billion
The New York Times
DAVID GELLES

Siemens, the German engineering conglomerate, announced late Sunday a deal for the Dresser-Rand Group, an oil products and services company. The deal, worth about $7.6 billion, including the assumption of debt, gives Siemens prominence in the American energy sector, which is booming as new reserves of oil and natural gas are tapped through unconventional drilling techniques.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Rockefellers, Heirs to an Oil Fortune, Will Divest Charity From Fossil Fuels
New York Times
John Schwartz

John D. Rockefeller built a vast fortune on oil. Now his heirs are abandoning fossil fuels. The family whose legendary wealth flowed from Standard Oil is planning to announce on Monday that its $860 million philanthropic organization, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, is joining the divestment movement that began a couple years ago on college campuses.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Why not use recycled water for fracking? Recycling wastewater and reusing it for fracking makes sense, but the cost will need to become competitive with injection-well disposal.
Inde Online
Shane Hoover

Some of the water used in fracking stays underground. Some of it returns to the surface. Shale wells have generated 5.9 million barrels — nearly 250 million gallons — of brine since drilling began, according to production reports from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The wastewater includes naturally occurring salt water and flowback from fracking.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Thirsty wells: Fracking consumes billions of gallons of water
Inde Online
Shane Hoover

Drillers in Ohio have used more than 4 billion gallons of water to frack horizontal shale wells since 2011. That's a lot of water. Enough to fill one two-liter soda bottle for every person on the planet; or in terms that motorists in shale country can relate to, 800,000 tanker-loads of water.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Major Fracking Forum to Be Held in Fullerton
Voice of OC
Nick Gerda

After months of public concern about oil well fracking – and industry assurances that proper safeguards are in place – experts on the oil extraction method are scheduled Tuesday to answer questions from the public about its impact on water quality, earthquakes and other issues. Several hundred people are expected to attend the fracking symposium organized by Cal State Fullerton that features industry representatives and experts on the science and regulatory rules of fracking and other oil extraction methods.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Hawkins: stop fracking, promote clean energy, adjust the state tax rates
Watertown Daily Times
Maury Thompson

GLENS FALLS — In 2010, Howie Hawkins succeeded in getting 50,000 votes in the governor’s race, which qualified the Green Party for official ballot status in New York for four years. This year, making a repeat run, his goal is not just to qualify for ballot status, but to get 250,000 votes, about 5 percent of the total vote. Achieving that would establish the Green Party as a “third major party” that would be the voice of liberal voters in New York, he said Thursday in a meeting with The Post-Star editorial board.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Fracking’s environmental impacts scrutinised
Manchester U


Greenhouse gas emissions from the production and use of shale gas would be comparable to conventional natural gas, but the controversial energy source actually faired better than renewables on some environmental impacts, according to new research.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Climate change: Thousands march across the UK
BBC


Thousands of people have taken part in a march for climate action in London - one of more than 2,000 marches which took place around the world. Campaigners, including actress Emma Thompson and singer Peter Gabriel, marched along Embankment to a rally in Parliament Square. Other marches in the UK took place in Manchester, Edinburgh, Sheffield, Stroud and Dudley.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
OVER TWO THOUSAND ON PEOPLE’S CLIMATE MARCH TO LABOUR PARTY CONFERENCE
Salford Star


GREATER MANCHESTER JOINS THE WORLD IN DEMANDING ACTION ON CLIMATE CHANGE Over two thousand people marched to the Labour Party Conference in Manchester today to demand that its leaders, and political leaders around the world, do something about the threat of climate change.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Shale gas extraction issues go beyond fracking
Pittsburgh Post Gazette
Anya Litvak

Ask oil and gas industry advocates, environmentalists and regulators about the biggest issues facing shale gas development, and none are likely to cite the possibility of fracking fluids traveling up thousands of feet of rock into groundwater aquifers as their top concern. There’s surface spills, transportation accidents, leaks in holding tanks and impoundments — all of these have much more potential to pollute groundwater. Yet blaming — or exonerating — fracking for this method of groundwater pollution seems to lead reports of new shale studies, even if those studies say little about actual fracking. “Faulty well integrity, not hydraulic fracturing deep underground, is the primary cause of drinking water contamination from shale gas extraction in parts of Pennsylvania and Texas, according to a new study by researchers from five universities,” began a press release last week from Duke University, former home of Rob Jackson, one of the scientists involved in the study.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Pa. system for tracking compliance at Marcellus Shale well sites in disrepair
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Sean Hamill

A Post-Gazette analysis of DEP records provides a detailed look at the Marcellus Shale industry and its regulation, showing the serious problems in spotting well-site incidents, record keeping, and hiring adequate numbers of inspectors; it also shows how the industry has responded to accidents and surrounding publicity. This is the first of three parts. *** Six years into the Marcellus Shale natural gas boom, the state Department of Environmental Protection’s online data on Pennsylvania well sites is a study in incomplete data and inaccurate information. The DEP acknowledges that the online Compliance Report, which was supposed to provide clear and accessible information on everything from spills to driller performance, is so error-ridden that it is virtually impossible to get an accurate picture of how drilling is being regulated. The Post-Gazette analyzed every paper record for every Marcellus well incident that resulted in fines through June 1, 2014, and compared those to the information on the online Compliance Report. It found vast discrepancies between the field reports of the incidents and the electronic accounting of them. Among the findings:  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Climate activists not ready for Hillary
MSNBC
Alex Seitz-Wald

NEW YORK – Some of the prominent environmental activists who gathered Sunday in New York City for a massive climate change march are not ready to support Hillary Clinton if she decides to run for president. “I think Hillary Clinton has an awful lot to demonstrate to environmentalists and people who care about climate change,” Bill McKibben, the founder of 350.org, who helped organize the march, told msnbc. “She oversaw the complete fiasco that was the Copenhagen Conference as secretary of state. That was the biggest foreign policy failure since Munich. It’s not a proud record.”   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Study Backs Environmentalist Worries About Natural Gas
Forbes
Jeff McMahon

Natural gas is often touted as a “bridge” fuel to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions during a transition from coal-fired power plants to renewable sources of energy. But natural gas offers few short-term benefits over coal, according to a study released last week by Energy Innovation, as long as the natural-gas infrastructure continues to leak methane. “For short time frames and if natural gas leakage rates are high, natural gas may offer little benefit compared to coal or could even exacerbate warming,” according to economist Chris Busch and physicist Eric Gimon, publishing in the most recent issue of The Electricity Journal. ”Over a longer period, such as 100 years or more, natural gas from electricity provides greenhouse gas reductions compared to coal even if leakage rates are relatively high.” The advantage of natural gas can best be seen over the long-term, in which gas offers about a 50 percent reduction in emissions over coal. Unfortunately, a 50 percent improvement over 100 years is too little, too late. “By this time, emissions reductions must be much more ambitious than this if we are to power civilization in a way that enables a safe and stable climate,” according to an issue brief released in conjunction with the study.  [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Butler Township OKs gas-drilling plan
Reading Eagle


A plan to drill for natural gas at a Butler Township golf course has angered some nearby residents and opponents of hydraulic fracturing. Yet there was little recourse for township commissioners but to approve zoning changes to allow Rex Energy to construct a Marcellus shale well pad to drill for natural gas on the Krendale Golf Course, said chairman Joe Hasychak.   [Full Story]

Sep 21, 2014
Thirsty wells: Fracking consumes billions of gallons of water
Canton Rep


Drillers in Ohio have used more than 4 billion gallons of water to frack horizontal shale wells since 2011. That's a lot of water. Enough to fill one two-liter soda bottle for every person on the planet; or in terms that motorists in shale country can relate to, 800,000 tanker-loads of water.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Oil industry on borrowed time as switch to gas and solar accelerates
The Telegraph
Ambrose Evans-Pritchard

The props beneath the global oil industry are slowly decaying. The big traded energy companies resemble the telecom giants of the late 1990s, heavily leveraged to a business model already threatened by fast-moving technology. Citigroup warns - or cheerfully acclaims, depending on your point of view - that world energy markets are entering a period of "extreme flux", with oil caught in triple encirclement by cheap natural gas, much more efficient vehicles and breathtaking advances in solar power as scientists crack the secrets.  [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
SkyTruth maps impoundments using aerial photos
Observer-Reporter
Emily Petsko

Attempting to identify every Marcellus Shale impoundment in Washington and Greene counties is an arduous – perhaps impossible – task for the average citizen to undertake. The Department of Environmental Protection keeps no map or comprehensive list of every pond used to store fresh or wastewater for fracking operations in Pennsylvania. Even township officials sometimes are unsure of the exact location of impoundments within their borders; they're typically hidden from plain view in wooded and rural areas. But some independent groups have been filling in the gaps. One of those is SkyTruth, a nonprofit organization established in 2002 that uses aerial imagery and crowdsourcing to identify impoundments.  [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
The deepest cuts Our guide to the actions that have done the most to slow global warming
The Economist


ON SEPTEMBER 23rd 120-odd presidents and prime ministers will gather in New York for a UN meeting on climate change. It is the first time the subject has brought so many leaders together since the ill-fated Copenhagen summit of 2009. Now, as then, they will assert that reining in global warming is a political priority. Some may commit their governments to policies aimed at reducing greenhouse-gas emissions. What few will say is how many tonnes of carbon dioxide these will save—because they almost never do. According to scientists, cutting carbon-dioxide emissions is an essential part of reducing catastrophic risks from climate change. Yet governments are persistently averse to providing estimates of how much carbon a policy saves. That may be because, in countries where climate change is controversial, it makes more sense to talk about the other benefits a scheme offers rather than its effect on carbon. Or it may be that, in countries which are enthusiastic about renewable energy, pointing out that it may not save that much carbon is seen as unhelpful. Or perhaps governments think climate change is so serious that all measures must be taken, regardless of cost (though their overall lacklustre record suggests this is not the case).  [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Local leaders from Pennsylvania head south to offer advice on shale gas drilling
SNL
Mark Hand

Towns and counties in the Tidewater region of Virginia are doing their homework in preparation for the possibility of shale gas drilling moving into their region in the next few years. As part of that preparation, they invited three local officials from Washington County in southwestern Pennsylvania to share their experiences with shale gas drilling. "As we've been working through this process, it became eminently clear that we needed to ask … other communities that experienced oil and gas exploration already," Lewie Lawrence, director of the Middle Peninsula Planning District Commission said in introductory remarks at a Sept. 19 forum in Tappahannock, Va.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Butler Township OKs gas-drilling plan
Trib Live
Rick Wills

A plan to drill for natural gas at a Butler Township golf course has angered some nearby residents and opponents of hydraulic fracturing. Yet there was little recourse for township commissioners but to approve zoning changes to allow Rex Energy to construct a Marcellus shale well pad to drill for natural gas on the Krendale Golf Course, said chairman Joe Hasychak.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
US shale oil drillers flaring and venting billions of dollars in natural gas
Ecologist
Sharon Kelly

Gas flaring of natural at shale oil wells is carried out on such a scale in North Dakota and Texas that 'phantom cities' show up at night in satellite photos, writes Sharon Kelly. Billions of dollars worth of gas are going up in smoke, adding to CO2 emissions - but far worse for the climate is when the gas is 'vented'. Regulators are doing too little, too late.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Fracking's threat to health, environment raises alarm
Star Advertiser
Ira Zunin

Fracking has rapidly begun to move the United States toward energy independence, but at what price? Given the current state of affairs, in which the Middle East is in tatters, the Cold War with Russia looks to have returned and both India and China boast an accelerating appetite for fuel, this technological breakthrough could not have come at a better time. Yet the wealth promised by fracking comes at great expense: risks to the health of Mother Earth and her human population.  [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Pros and Cons of Measure P Debated
Santa Barbara Independent
Lyz Hoffman

The opposing camps behind Measure P agreed at a debate this week that the drilling ban would mean “substantial change” for Santa Barbara County — but how each side envisions “change” remains a divisive matter. Dave Davis, president of the initiative-backing Community Environmental Council, played for the “Yes” side against former School Board president and Libertarian Lanny Ebenstein, who swung for the “No” team.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
‘Don’t frack the Ohio River!’, W. Virginia citizens urge Tomblin
Eaglefordtexas.com
Shane Thielges

West Virginia residents sent a letter to Governor Earl Ray Tomblin this week with a simple message: don’t frack under the Ohio River! The concerned citizens groups hope to convince Tomblin to reconsider a proposal by the state Department of Environmental Protection to drill for natural gas underneath the Ohio River. The Department announced it would begin accepting bids from interested energy companies on August 13.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Cuomo foes pounce on fracking indecision
Poughkeepsie Journal
Jon Campbell

With Cuomo facing re-election for the first time this November, his political opponents are trying to use his uncharacteristic indecision on the issue against him. But with public-opinion polls still showing New York voters consistently split on fracking, it's unclear whether Cuomo's foes — including Republican candidate Rob Astorino, a gas-drilling supporter — can capitalize on it.  [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Complaint filed over anti-fracking ad
Charlotte Observer


The free-market Civitas Institute has filed a complaint with the N.C. Board of Elections and the Secretary of State’s office alleging environmental organizations broke the law with a series of TV ads they ran attacking a handful of state legislators for supporting fracking this year. Fracking involves pumping a mixture of sand, water and chemicals into deep shale formations, then fracturing the rock to release the gas.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Art plays bit part in drilling debate
Centre Daily
Sherry Coven

Now, a group of six photographers has put together an exhibition that tells the story of the drilling debate through visual imagery. Starting Sept. 23, the Palmer Museum of Art will host the “Marcellus Shale Documentary Project,” a collection of photographs that the artists hope will shed some light and encourage debate through personal stories about the impact of drilling. While Marcellus Shale drilling is found in several neighboring states, the exhibit focuses on Pennsylvania. Photographer Brian Cohen, who first proposed the idea of doing this project, was aware that, because of its volatility, the project had to be approached with balance rather than the political agenda that’s already widespread in the media.   [Full Story]

Sep 20, 2014
Excellent decision to stop fracking
The Argus
Opinion/Editorial

NATIONAL park Friends group, the South Downs Society, is still celebrating the outcome of the meeting of the park’s planning committee, writes Steve Ankers, South Downs Society policy officer. At the end of a meeting members voted unanimously to refuse an application from Celtique Energie for “exploratory drilling for hydrocarbons”.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Fracking sessions stress measures local officials can take
Fredericksburg.com
Cathy Dyson

Officials from two states talked at two meetings this week about what localities can do in the face of fracking, or hydraulic fracturing. Last night in Dahlgren, New York lawyer Helen Slottje told people at a town-hall meeting that Virginia gives local governments the power to decide its own zoning ordinances and in effect, prohibit fracking if that’s what counties what.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Local anti-fracking advocates to rally in NYC
Binghamton Homepage


New York City (WIVT) - Activists opposed to fracking plan to lend their voices to the chorus of people demanding a plan to address climate change this weekend in New York City. The local chapter of the Sierra Club has filled two buses with over 100 people who will take part in Sunday's People's Climate March.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Fracking waste water in Kennetcook still awaits disposal
The Chronicle Herald
Michael Gorman

The future of millions of litres of fracking waste water remains uncertain as the province waits for test results of a pilot project and other disposal proposals. Waste water from several test wells drilled in the Kennetcook, Hants County, area has sat in two holding ponds since the drilling in 2007-08.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Louisiana Judge Refuses to Expedite St. Tammany’s Fracking Ban Lawsuit
Fore X Minute


A Louisiana state judge at Baton Rouge threw out a request by St. Tammany Parish expedite the scheduled Oct. 27 hearing for its case that wants fracking in the parish blocked. An online filing at the 19th Judicial District Clerk of Court showed that Judge William Morvant refused to expedite the case on Tuesday, Sept. 16 and reiterated the lawsuit will be heard on Oct. 27 as set. The judge’s ruling was confirmed by a state Department of Natural Resources spokesman, reported The Times-Picayune.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Judge to decide within a week whether Sovereign is subject to Broomfield fracking moratorium Company said it is exempt because of memorandum of understanding
Broomfield Enterprise
Megan Quinn

A judge on Friday said he will issue an order within a week to decide whether oil and gas company Sovereign is subject to Broomfield's controversial, voter-approved five-year moratorium on fracking. Sovereign is suing, claiming it should be exempt from the restriction because of an agreement it had in place before the moratorium was approved by voters. Sovereign in 2013 planned to drill new wells in Broomfield, but was not able to because of the passage of the moratorium in November.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Council says Ohio EPA is giving gas, coal a pass
The News-Messenger
Kristina Smith

An environmental advocacy group says the state wants to loosen permit requirements for several project types that affect waterways, a move the group says would give fracking and coal industries a pass to destroy wetlands. But the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency says it’s simply streamlining the process companies are required to follow for certain types of projects.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Faces of Faith: Energy and ethics in era of change
Albany Times Union
Floyd Barwig

Energy and efficiency are twin towers in talk about the environment and climate change. How do you connect them all to another concept: ethics?  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Mich. Pipeline Leak Is Political Fodder in Heated House Race
InsideClimate News
Katherine Bagley

If opponents of incumbent Congressman Fred Upton (R-Mich) have their way, a natural gas pipeline leak that displaced 500 people earlier this week could take center stage in one of the nation's most heated Congressional races. The contest for Michigan's 6th congressional district pins fossil fuel champion Upton, a 14-term U.S. Representative and chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, against Democratic newcomer Paul Clements, a political science professor at Western Michigan University and an advocate for climate action.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Pennsylvania Struggles With Gas Drilling Pollution
Chem.Info
Associated Press

DONEGAL, Pa. (AP) — An elderly western Pennsylvania couple is struggling to cope after state officials say a natural gas drilling company's wastewater pond contaminated their drinking water. The state Department of Environmental Protection has ruled that Ken and Mildred Geary's water was tainted by a leak from the WPX Energy Appalachia LLC site, the Pittsburgh Tribune Review (http://bit.ly/1yina8t ) reports. The drilling site is about 60 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
SR 41 in Adams County reopens after natural gas explosion; man injured
WCPO


WEST UNION, Ohio -- SR 41 in Adams County has reopened between Kimberly Drive and SR 136 after a natural gas explosion, authorities said. A worker who was drilling near a home was injured in the blast, just south of West Union, officials said.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Pennsylvania Natural Resources Agency Ordered To Delete Climate Change Info From Website
ThinkProgress
EMILY ATKIN

he Pennsylvania state agency that regulates gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing was explicitly ordered by members of Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration to remove several references to “climate change” from the agency’s website, a former agency employee told the Allegheny Front on Friday. Adrian Stouffer, a former Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) marketing manager, told the paper that she and other agency employees were told to delete the references to climate change during a meeting at Corbett’s offices in 2012. The administration officials reportedly didn’t want all mentions of climate change taken off the website, but did want references taken off “in cases where we looked like we were giving a position” on whether or not humans cause global warming.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
What Can Texas Do About Roads Damaged by Drilling?
State Impact Texas
Kyle Ver

During a Texas Senate Transportation Committee on Transportation hearing, TxDOT highlighted a $500-million solution enacted by the state to rehabilitate damaged roads linked to heavy oil and gas related traffic in the natural gas hot spot.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Power To the People? Not If Utilities Have a Say
Energy Policy Forum
Deborah Lawrence

Solar capacity is growing. Rapidly. EIA, the Energy Information Administration, recently released figures on the growth of solar vs. natural gas power plant capacity additions for the first half of 2014. While natural gas appeared the winner at first glance, outperforming solar installations, it turns out that it was actually the silver medalist. EIA only compared large scale solar capacity additions. What they did not compare was the small scale, roof top solar installations commonly referred to as distributed generation. And this made all the difference. Small scale roof top solar together with larger scale projects actually added 2478 megawatts of total capacity in the first half of 2014 whereas EIA’s data showed only ~1000 megawatts of solar capacity added. This is a significant difference. Total gas fired capacity was ~159 megawatts below the total solar figure making solar the clear winner.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Proposal for natural gas drilling under Ohio River sparks citizen concerns
The State Journal
Sarah Tincher

Citizen groups on both sides of the Ohio River sent a letter Sept. 17 to West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin expressing their concerns and opposition with the pending proposal that would allow natural gas drilling under the Ohio River. The state Division of Natural Resources, under the West Virginia Department of Commerce, began taking bids for natural gas drilling under the Ohio River in Pleasants, Marshall and Wetzel counties on Aug. 13. The bidding deadline is Sept. 25.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Monday’s New Brunswick election a litmus test for the rest of Canada on shale gas
Rabble.ca
Maude Barlow

New Brunswickers head to the polls in what seems to be another PC versus Liberal tête-à-tête this Monday. But this province’s election could also be key to determining Canada’s future and the future of fracking. Liberal Premier Shawn Graham’s wrong-headed decision to sell off NB Power cost him the last election; this time, PC Premier David Alward will lose from putting all of his eggs in the shale gas fracking basket.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
County Supervisors could adopt temporary fracking ban
Californian
Dennis L. Taylor

Monterey County is working toward its own regulations governing hydraulic fracturing, even inviting the Department of Conservation to Salinas to brief Supervisors. But, in the meantime, they will recommend on Tuesday that the Board of Supervisors pass a moratorium on the practice until updated ordinances are in place. In a board report slated for the Supervisors’ Tuesday meeting, Monterey County Planning Department staff is recommending that Supervisors adopt recommendations previously adopted by the Planning Commission in April of this year.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Earthquakes Linked to Fracking
Free Speech


Ever since the highly controversial process of fracking first arrived on the scene - numerous studies have shown just how dangerous it can be for the environment and for human lives. But now - a new study released by scientists with the US Geological Survey reveals a near certain connection between fracking and earthquakes. The scientists found evidence "directly linking" earthquakes in Colorado and New Mexico since 2001 with increases in wastewater injection - a process used in fracking.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Merriam Webster adds 'Fracking' to its Dictionary
KQCD-ABC
Mary Cate Mannion

As the English language continues to change and evolve, dictionaries must keep up with additional words and meanings. This past week Merriam Webster announced several additions to the collegiate dictionary, such as hashtag and selfie. Also on that list is one that has a long history in North Dakota's oil fields. It goes on every day in North Dakota's oil fields, now Miriam Webster dictionary has added the word fracking, which is an abbreviation of the term hydraulic fracturing, to its latest edition.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Fracking an Arid Landscape: New Report Examines Freshwater Availability near Gas Reserves
Center for Effective Government
Amanda Frank

As governments around the world consider tapping into their shale gas reserves through fracking, a new report cautions them to consider a key factor: available freshwater. The World Resources Institute (WRI) found that 38 percent of shale resources lie beneath arid or water-stressed regions. These areas may face water shortages and disputes when fracking’s enormous thirst for water competes with other local uses.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Pro/Con: Fracking in New York
Lohud
Opinion/Editorial

Hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," is on hold in the state; New Yorkers remain split on whether the natural gas-mining practice should be permitted. Health risks tied to toxic fallout I am not going to allow my family, friends and people I care about to get ill, much less die, due to this project called "fracking." I personally urge Gov. Andrew Cuomo to ban fracking in New York state. Fracking produces toxic chemicals, which in turn have shown to cause cancer, birth defects and death.  [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Fracking’s woes told at forums
Fredericksburg.com
Cathy Dyson

Officials from two states talked at two meetings this week about what localities can do in the face of fracking, or hydraulic fracturing. Three elected representatives from Pennsylvania told an audience in Tappahannock on Friday to know what they’re getting into, if their local governments sign up for natural gas drilling.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Guest Viewpoint: Curb climate change with fracking ban
Press Connects
Matt Lemke

Everyone in Binghamton remembers it well: In September 2011, torrential rains from Tropical Storm Lee brought what experts called a 500-year flood to our city, destroying or damaging more than 7,300 buildings in the area and causing hundreds of millions of dollars of damage. But it wasn't a 500-year flood. As bad it was, the flood from Lee was actually the second historically rare flood in just a five-year span, thanks to climate change.   [Full Story]

Sep 19, 2014
Shale Fracking is a “Ponzi Scheme” … “This Decade’s Version of the Dotcom Bubble”
Global Research


It has “a lot in Common with the Subprime Mortgage Market Just Before it Melted Down” A Losing Bet In 2011, the New York Times wrote: “Money is pouring in” from investors even though shale gas is “inherently unprofitable,” an analyst from PNC Wealth Management, an investment company, wrote to a contractor in a February e-mail. “Reminds you of dot-coms.” “The word in the world of independents is that the shale plays are just giant Ponzi schemes and the economics just do not work,” an analyst from IHS Drilling Data, an energy research company, wrote in an e-mail on Aug. 28, 2009. *** “And now these corporate giants are having an Enron moment,” a retired geologist from a major oil and gas company wrote in a February e-mail about other companies invested in shale gas.   [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Analysis: Existing cracks a cause in Kentucky pipeline blast
WDRB
Marcus Green

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The Adair County natural gas pipeline that ruptured earlier this year, triggering a massive explosion that leveled nearby homes, had “pre-existing” cracks in a weld where the pipe broke, an analysis found. Those cracks and stresses on the pipeline – such as shifting soil – contributed to its failure in the early morning of Feb. 13 near Knifley, Ky., about 100 miles south of Louisville, according to the metallurgical report filed with federal regulators. The report, obtained under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act, found no evidence that the cracks grew over time. Instead, a consultant for pipeline operator Columbia Gulf Transmission concluded they likely occurred as hydrogen lodged in the weld when the pipeline was installed in 1965.   [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
US to train veterans to install solar panels
The Washington Post
Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The U.S. is planning to train veterans to become solar panel installers in the next six years, the White House said Thursday. The jobs training program is among a host of initiatives the White House says will cut carbon dioxide emissions by more than 300 million tons through 2030, plus save billions of dollars on energy bills for homeowners and businesses. It will launch this fall at one or more military bases and train a total of at least 50,000, including veterans.   [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
The Great Frack Forward
Mother Jones
Jaeah Lee and James West

N A HAZY MORNING LAST SEPTEMBER, 144 American and Chinese government officials and high-ranking oil executives filed into a vaulted meeting room in a cloistered campus in south Xi'an, a city famous for its terra-cotta warriors and lethal smog. The Communist Party built this compound, called the Shaanxi Guesthouse, in 1958. It was part of the lead-up to Chairman Mao's Great Leap Forward, in which, to surpass the industrial achievements of the West, the government built steelworks, coal mines, power stations, and cement factories—displacing hundreds of thousands and clearcutting a tenth of China's forests in the process. Despite its quaint name, the guesthouse is a cluster of immense concrete structures jutting out of expansive, manicured lawns and man-made lakes dotted with stone bridges and pagodas. It also features a karaoke lounge, spa, tennis stadium, shopping center, and beauty salon.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Citizens Speak Out Against Proposed Cove Point LNG Export Facility at FERC Meeting
EcoNews
Anastasia Pantsios

Today, citizens from Calvert County, Maryland, angry that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) commissioners sent stand-ins to a meeting in their area on the controversial proposal to allow the Dominion Cove Point facility to convert from an import to an export terminal for liquified natural gas (LNG), took their case to FERC’s monthly meeting in Washington D.C.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Cuomo, Hochul issue ‘women’s equality pledge’
Capital


In front of the hotel were about a dozen anti-fracking protesters. A reporter asked Cuomo whether there would be a decision on fracking before the election. "No, there will not," Cuomo said.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Workers at Fracked Wells Exposed to Benzene, CDC Warns Amid Mounting Evidence of Shale Jobs' Dangers
DeSmogBlog
Sharon Kelly

For years, the oil and gas industry has worked to convince Americans that the rush to drill shale wells across the country will not only provide large corporations with lavish profits, but will also create enormous numbers of attractive and high-paid jobs, transforming the economies of small towns and cities that greenlight drilling. The industry's numbers are often picked up by policy-makers and politicians who back drilling, in part because talk of job growth is an especially alluring idea in the wake of the 2008 financial collapse.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Pa. families struggle with gas drilling pollution
ABC 27 WHTM


DONEGAL, Pa. (AP) - An elderly western Pennsylvania couple is struggling to cope after a natural gas drilling company's wastewater pond contaminated their drinking water. The state Department of Environmental Protection has ruled that Ken and Mildred Geary's water was contaminated by a leak from the WPX Energy Appalachia LLC site, the Pittsburgh Tribune Review (http://bit.ly/1yina8t ) reports.   [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Gore: Fracking Won't Solve Our Climate Crisis Natural gas can't be a "bridge fuel" unless we crack down on methane leaks, he tells Climate Desk.
Mother Jones
Tim McDonnell

Few figures in the climate change debate are as polarizing as former Vice President Al Gore. His fans and his enemies are equally rabid, and his 2006 film An Inconvenient Truth is still probably the most-referenced document on climate change in history. In the last few years, Gore's global warming work has mostly been channeled into a nonprofit he oversees called the Climate Reality Project, which organizes rallies and educational events.... Gore expressed skepticism about the fracking boom. He said he opposed the use of natural gas as a bridge fuel—something the Obama administration has supported—"until and unless they demonstrate the ability to stop the methane leaks at every stage of the process, particularly during fracking."  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Shale Oil Drillers Deliberately Wasted Nearly $1 Billion in Gas, Harming Climate
DeSmog Blog
Sharon Kelly

While their shale wells extract valuable oil, natural gas also rises from the wells alongside that oil. That gas could be sold for use for electrical power plants or to heat homes, but it is harder to transport from the well to customers than oil. Oil can be shipped via truck, rail or pipe, but the only practical way to ship gas is by pipeline, and new pipelines are expensive, often costing more to construct than the gas itself can be sold for. So, instead of losing money on pipeline construction, many shale oil drillers have decided to simply burn the gas from their wells off, a process known in the industry as “flaring.”  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Pennsylvania DEP orders Range Resources to pay $4 million fine
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Don Hopey

Range Resources will pay penalties totaling more than $4 million to settle violations related to six Marcellus Shale gas drilling and fracking wastewater impoundments in Washington County, under an agreement with the state Department of Environmental Resources. State DEP officials announced the broad consent order today, touting the fine as the largest assessed against an oil and gas operator working in the Marcellus Shale gas era. The consent order will result in the closing of five of the football-field-sized impoundments and require Range Resources to upgrade two others to standards now being developed by the state.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
U.S. green groups urge methane rules for oil and gas industry
Reuters
Ayesha Rascoe

(Reuters) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency must act to rein in methane pollution from the oil and gas industry, environmental groups said on Thursday, warning that failure to set federal standards would undermine other Obama administration efforts to address climate change. The EPA is expected to lay out a plan within months to reduce methane emissions from oil and gas drilling as a part of President Barack Obama's broad climate action plan. A coalition of major green groups, including the Environmental Defense Fund and the Natural Resources Defense Council, urged Obama in a letter to "swiftly" issue binding emission regulations on oil and gas production, the largest industrial source of methane. Voluntary measures would not be enough to contain methane pollution, said Mark Brownstein, chief counsel of the U.S. climate and energy program at the EDF.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
The hidden leaks of Pennsylvania's abandoned oil and gas wells
The Guardian
Peter Moskowitz

Laurie Barr spent a recent Saturday like she spends a lot of her weekends: trodding through the thorny and damp woodlands of rural north-western Pennsylvania, juggling a point-and-shoot camera, a GPS navigator, a cell phone, and, most importantly for the mission at hand, a methane detector. “I found one!” Barr yelled from deep in the woods to her two friends – fellow abandoned oil and gas well enthusiasts who were decidedly more hesitant to walk off the pre-cut path. “Here’s the spot they killed the last abandoned well hunter,” Barr joked from somewhere deep in the woods. Then Barr did something she’s done hundreds of times in the last three years – she leaned over a foot-wide hole in the ground and waved around the gas detector until it began beeping. First the beeps were slow, then rapid.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Beauchamp: How fracking contributes to climate change
Newsday
Alex Beauchamp

New York will host the People's Climate March on Sunday -- a globally coordinated effort to demand action to confront climate change. It is fitting that it will happen in New York, a state that understands the threats of climate change better than most. Just a couple years removed from superstorm Sandy, New Yorkers -- particularly Long Islanders -- know all too well that we're already seeing the effects of climate disruption. Weeks without electricity. Homes flooded or washed away. Lives lost. And many scientists and experts insist that without immediate action, the worst is yet to come.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Deep Inside the Wild World of China's Fracking Boom
Mother Jones


N A HAZY MORNING LAST SEPTEMBER, 144 American and Chinese government officials and high-ranking oil executives filed into a vaulted meeting room in a cloistered campus in south Xi'an, a city famous for its terra-cotta warriors and lethal smog. The Communist Party built this compound, called the Shaanxi Guesthouse, in 1958. It was part of the lead-up to Chairman Mao's Great Leap Forward, in which, to surpass the industrial achievements of the West, the government built steelworks, coal mines, power stations, and cement factories—displacing hundreds of thousands and clearcutting a tenth of China's forests in the process.  [Full Story]

Sep 18, 2014
Candidate Tom Wolf Promises Shale Fracking Tax Revenue For Pa. Schools
CBS Philly
Mike Dougherty

CHESTER, Pa. (CBS) — Tom Wolf, the Democratic candidate for governor of Pennsylvania, today visited the STEM Academy in Chester, to speak with students and teachers about the state of education in cash-strapped school districts.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Fracking opponents question show of fracking support at hearing
Smoky Mountain News
Holly Kays

Attendees at Cullowhee’s hearing on the proposed oil and gas rules Sept. 12 were overwhelmingly anti-fracking, but a small contingent of men showed up on a bus from Winstom-Salem — provided by the N.C. Energy Forum — wearing sky blue t-shirts bearing the words “Shale Yes.” Except, fracking opponents are saying, the men weren’t exactly informed proponents of the fossil fuel extraction practice. “It was really clear that these people they brought in had no knowledge of fracking at all. They just put them in blue T-shirts and blue hats to make it look like they had support, and they didn’t,” said Bettie Ashby of the Jackson County Coalition Against Fracking.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Future of fracking will influence November election for governor
NY Now
Karen Dewitt

The issue of hydrofracking played a role in the recent Democratic primary for governor in New York, and those who oppose the gas drilling process hope it will influence the general election, as well. Governor Cuomo, once on a fast track to begin the natural gas drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing in New York, has put his decision on hold while his administration is conducting a health review that began two years ago. Cuomo, asked about the future of fracking in the state one day after the Democratic primary, said he’s still reserving judgment.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Fracking Protesters Greet Governor Cuomo In Webster Before Private Fundraiser
TWC Rochester


WEBSTER, N.Y. -- Governor Andrew Cuomo was in Webster on Wednesday evening for a private fundraiser. He had no public appearances in the area. People Protesting hydraulic fracturing met the governor's motorcade as it pulled up to a private home.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Oil and gas bounty from fracking leads to debate over exports, conference told
Denver Business Journal
Cathy Proctor

Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have changed the nation’s energy supplies so dramatically that now people are pushing to export domestic oil and natural gas internationally, Gale Norton, a former U.S. Secretary of the Interior, said at an oil and gas conference Wednesday.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
High Intensity Surrounds Heated Debate Over ‘Anti-Fracking’ Initiative on November Ballot Both sides spar over what Measure P will and will not ban if approved, and the extent of its impacts on Santa Barbara County water, jobs, tax revenue and litigation
Noozhawk
Mike Mattingly

Liars, manipulators and outsiders are lined up on either side of Santa Barbara County’s “anti-fracking” ballot initiative, if local voters are to believe the rhetoric leading up to the November election. Officially known as Measure P, “The Healthy Air and Water Initiative to Ban Fracking” has reignited a long-running debate pitting priorities of environmentalists and oil opponents against those of industry supporters — limiting oil production versus jobs, energy independence and county tax dollars.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Despite Fracking Tie, Ohioans Largely Pass On Earthquake Insurance
Idea Stream


Despite a number of recent cases where earthquakes have been linked to fracking activity, Ohioans so far mostly have passed on earthquake insurance.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Oil and gas bounty from fracking leads to debate over exports, conference told
Denver Business Journal
Cathy Proctor

Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have changed the nation’s energy supplies so dramatically that now people are pushing to export domestic oil and natural gas internationally, Gale Norton, a former U.S. Secretary of the Interior, said at an oil and gas conference Wednesday.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Watch: Anti-fracking protesters turn out in force for Liverpool council meeting amid Mayor's pledge for committee
Liverpool Echo
Marc Waddington

Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson pledged the city’s regeneration team would meet to discuss fears over fracking after protestors gathered outside the town hall. A petition of around 3000 names was handed up at tonight’s meeting, with the chamber addressed by campaigners who said there were serious dangers for the ecology of Merseyside if the controversial fracking and underground coal gasification, which firms have been granted licences to conduct in the region.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Opinion/Editorial: No fracking here?
Daily Progress
Opinion/Editorial

Kudos to Gov. Terry McAuliffe for opposing fracking in the George Washington National Forest. Fracking is a controversial practice for extracting natural gas by fracturing rock strata and injecting water, sand and/or chemicals, forcing the gas into accessible pockets.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Ellesmere Port: Anti-fracking camp set up
Chester Chronicle
David Norbury

Anti-frackers have set up a community protection camp in Ellesmere Port. The protesters are battling against what they believe is a potential future fracking site off Merseyton Road.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Call For Fracking Moratorium
News 13 ABC


Haywood County calls for a moratorium on fracking. Commissioners say they want more research on natural gas mining. The board voted 5-0 this week urging North Carolina officials to stop fracking in the state until environmental policies are adopted into law.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Haywood leaders weigh in on fracking fray
Smoky Mountain News
Becky Johnson

Commissioners unanimously passed a resolution this week calling on the state to reinstate a fracking ban until the environmental consequences could be adequately studied. The resolution claims the state has moved too swiftly to open the door to fracking without first ensuring rules and policies are in place to protect the environment and public health.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Jackson dodges fracking, sans resolution
Smoky Mountain News
Jeremy Morrison

But when Greene got a look at the board’s Sept. 15 agenda there were no items related to fracking listed. “Chuck, help me with that,” Greene asked County Manager Chuck Wooten, referring to the absence as the board settled into its afternoon work session. Wooten told the commissioner that he didn’t think such a conversation was needed in light of the recent decision by the N.C. Department of Energy and Natural Resources to scuttle the geological testing that would serve as a precursor to any hydraulic fracturing activity in Western North Carolina.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Anti-fracking protesters demonstrate outside Cuomo fundraiser
Democrat & Chronicle
Gary McLendon

WEBSTER - About a dozen anti-fracking protesters tried to send a message to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and local democratic party leaders at a big-bucks fundraiser on Wednesday hosted by prominent area developer Wayne LeChase.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Marcellus Shale Drillers Underreported Waste
Construction Equipment Guide


PITTSBURGH (AP) - EQT Corp. told the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection that it sent 21 tons of drill cuttings from Marcellus Shale wells to area landfills in 2013. But landfills in southwestern Pennsylvania told a different story. Six facilities in this part of the state reported receiving nearly 95,000 tons of drill cuttings and fracking fluid from the Pittsburgh-based oil and gas operator in 2013.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
If Natural Gas Wells Used In Fracking Are Contaminating Water, Why Isn’t Fracking To Blame?
WUNC
Rebecca Martinez

Big news came out this week about fracking: Duke scientists have found that natural gas wells used in fracking caused contamination in eight drinking water wells in Texas and Pennsylvania. Many of you might have seen the videos of people living near gas exploration sites who can light their tap water on fire, because there’s so much methane in it. But the energy industry has solidly defended its position that the gas could be naturally occurring. There’s no evidence fracking caused the contamination. This Duke study is a big deal, because it traced the methane in contaminated water wells to nearby natural gas wells. Thousands of feet beneath those wells, hydraulic fracturing is being used to get the methane from deep underground. You might say that links the drinking water contamination to fracking, but... It technically doesn’t.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
The People’s Climate March: A Time Where ‘We’ Can Make a Difference
EcoWatch
Amy Smart & Carter Oosterhouse

Protecting the planet from the worst consequences of climate change is not an “I” issue, it’s a “We” issue, and notice we are using a capital “W.” That’s why it’s important for as many people as possible to take part in the People’s Climate March in New York, the various other marches around the world, and the social media actions associated with them over the next week. The People’s Climate March on the 21st in New York is a chance for hundreds of thousands of people of all walks of life—from the business community to hundreds of youth groups, and everyone in between—to show that “We,” as citizens of this planet, want a future that isn’t limited by the inaction we are seeing on climate change now.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Billboards Attack Anti-Fracking Celebrities
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

A head-scratching set of billboards has popped up along major highways in Pennsylvania. There’s a photo of Lady Gaga sporting a jeweled choker and a slab of meat on her head. “Would you take energy advice from a woman wearing a meat dress?” it says. Another features Robert Redford with the caption: “Demands green living. Flies on private jets.”  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Rail delays shut down Midwestern power plants
Marketplace
Dan Weissmann

The electric utility that serves the Duluth region is mothballing four coal-powered generators, and not because the Environmental Protection Agency told it to. No, Minnesota Power is idling these generators for three months because the railroad isn’t delivering enough coal. Railroads are crazy busy— carrying oil from North Dakota for one thing— and the delays are driving their customers nuts.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
How Fossil Fuels Make Inequality Worse
ThinkProgress
Andrew Breiner

There’s a whole line of thinking, popular with the fossil fuel industry and its allies in politics and business, that though climate change is real, the costs of addressing it are too high, especially for the world’s poor. In June, Bill Gates, billionaire philanthropist, took to his blog to promote that argument, saying the poor “can’t afford today’s expensive clean energy solutions, and we can’t expect them [to] wait for the technology to get cheaper.” Fossil fuels aren’t actually the secret to bringing energy to the world’s poor, though. Responding to Gates’ post, Jigar Shah, the founder of SunEdison, pointed to actual energy economics in the developing world. Entrepreneurs are turning to distributed sources of clean energy to spread electricity in poor countries, he wrote, “overwhelmingly out of the desire to power the poor — not to solve climate change.” Extending the grid to connect more people to fossil fuel power has progressed slowly. Meanwhile, home solar is providing cheap, renewable, off-grid power to a growing number of the rural poor in India and across the world. And a policy like a carbon tax would actually give money to poor people to make sure they don’t have to pay the price for the switch to renewable energy. Still, as the climate impacts, pollution, and environmental devastation that stem from fossil fuel consumption became undeniable, proponents of oil, gas, and coal have sought a human face to justify their continued use. The plight of the poor provided a good opportunity.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Wolf, Corbett surrogates trade barbs in Pennsylvania governor's race
The Morning Call
Scott Kraus and Steve Esack,

Surrogates for Republican Gov. Tom Corbett and Democratic challenger Tom Wolf skirmished Tuesday, trading familiar shots in dueling attacks. Former Wolf primary election opponent Katie McGinty appeared in Bethlehem with Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli and state House candidate Michael Beyer to hit Corbett on his management of state finances and his refusal to impose a severance tax on natural gas drilling operations.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Guest Column: 'Need' and 'convenience' of pipeline is non-existent
Lowell Sun
Kathryn R Eiseman OPINION

What have we learned since January, when Kinder Morgan's land agents started knocking on doors, seeking permission to survey land? We learned, early on, that the company seeks information it can use to convince federal regulators that its proposed Northeast Energy Direct project deserves a "certificate of public convenience and necessity." As it turns out, such a certificate would allow Kinder Morgan to take property by eminent domain from hundreds of landowners so that it can connect Marcellus shale gas to the existing Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline, which runs to Canada, where export projects are under way.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Marcellus Shale Drillers Underreported Waste
Construction Equipment Guide


ITTSBURGH (AP) - EQT Corp. told the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection that it sent 21 tons of drill cuttings from Marcellus Shale wells to area landfills in 2013. But landfills in southwestern Pennsylvania told a different story. Six facilities in this part of the state reported receiving nearly 95,000 tons of drill cuttings and fracking fluid from the Pittsburgh-based oil and gas operator in 2013.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Fracking debate in Illinois
Vindy.com
Tammy Webber AP

CHICAGO Environmentalists want to lift a cap on fines for violations, while industry officials want to limit who can ask for a public hearing as each side prepares for its last shot at changing proposed rules governing high-volume oil and gas drilling in Illinois. As Illinois moves closer to allowing hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” within the state’s borders, proponents and critics are poring over extensive rules developed by the state Department of Natural Resources to see if they address concerns or add any unexpected twists. A law passed last year was seen as a national model of compromise on how to regulate the controversial practice, but both advocates and opponents since have been critical of the rule-making process. Industry officials have complained bitterly of what they consider the slow pace, warning that it could cost the state jobs.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Rochester approves moratorium on oil drilling
CandGNews.com
Mary Beth Almond

ROCHESTER — The city of Rochester has joined neighboring Rochester Hills and Shelby Township in putting a temporary halt on oil and gas drilling. On Sept. 8, the Rochester City Council unanimously voted to enact a 90-day moratorium on oil and gas drilling, a motion that was prompted by opposition from residents and recently introduced state Senate Bill 1026, which would ban oil and gas drilling in cities and townships of 70,000 residents or more. City Manager Jaymes Vettraino said the city started following the issue in July, after West Bay Exploration Co. drilled an exploratory oil well near 25 Mile and Dequindre roads in Shelby Township — about 1,000 feet of the municipal border and a residential district of Rochester. In August, West Bay voluntarily discontinued its operation in the township in the wake of residents’ objections.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
OPINION: Fracking equals climate change
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Eric Weltman

On Sept. 21, thousands will converge on New York City for the People’s Climate March. The event coincides with an important United Nations climate change summit featuring leaders from across the world. Among those taking to the streets will be many New York State residents calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to be a leader on global warming by banning fracking. Fracking is a dangerous method of extracting natural gas that threatens our water, health and environment. Fracking also spells disaster for our climate. That’s because the production, transportation and combustion of fracked gas releases and generates massive amounts of pollution that causes global warming.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Josh Fox: It’s Easy to Switch to Renewable Energy
EcoNews
Stefanie Spear

I love documentaries. They are so informative, engaging and inspiring. But I find it’s hard to keep those emotions alive days and weeks after watching a film. It would be great if everyone remained as energized by a film months later, as they felt walking out of the theatre. But fortunately there are films like GASLAND that have an everlasting effect and ability to grow an entire movement. Josh Fox’s GASLAND and GASLAND PART II revolutionized the anti-fracking movement and gave people the tools to get educated and fight back. Now, with the tipping point of the People’s Climate March and Fox’s Solutions Grassroots Tour, I thought it a perfect time to feature a Q&A with the the NY Yankee hat-wearing-playwright-turned activist.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Elizabeth mayor says state won't ban fracking so towns, counties should
NJ.com
Tom Haydon

ELIZABETH — Mayor Christian Bollwage is recommending that municipal and county governments move to block fracking and the disposal of fracking waste, saying the state government will not act on the controversial practice.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
How Residents of a Rural New Mexico County Fought the Fracking Barons and Won - for Now
Truth-Out
Nina Bunker Ruiz

My parents live in Chacon, New Mexico, in a wind-chapped finger of high-mountain Mora Valley. My grandparents were determined to spend their last days there and are buried in Chacon’s campo santo. Every delicious summer of my childhood, I played in and along the Mora River, and now my children splash in the same cold mountain stream. Energy companies are seeking permits to explore natural gas extraction through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in Mora County. But the area’s traditional livelihoods, farming and ranching, rely on clean, healthy rivers and streams. New Mexico has recently suffered several years of severe drought. Millions of gallons of water are used to frack, and water contamination and earthquakes are increasingly paired with this technology.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Fracking Bans Enrage Coloradans Sitting on Energy Riches
Bloomberg
Jennifer Oldham

Mineral owners left out of the energy boom in Colorado and other states are mobilizing to fight local fracking bans they say are depriving them of billions of dollars in oil and natural-gas royalties.   [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Busy Days Precede a March Focusing on Climate Change
The New York Times
LISA W. FODERARO

In a three-story warehouse in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn, hundreds of people are working to turn the People’s Climate March planned for Sunday into a visual spectacle. There were victims of Hurricane Sandy from the Rockaways toiling with artists on a 30-foot inflatable life preserver, and immigrant artists constructing a papier-mâché tree embedded with axes. Elsewhere, religious leaders were building an ark and scientists were constructing a chalkboard covered with calculations about carbon. The run-up to what organizers say will be the largest protest about climate change in the history of the United States has transformed New York City into a beehive of planning and creativity, drawing graying local activists and young artists from as far away as Germany.  [Full Story]

Sep 17, 2014
Anti-fracking protesters demonstrate outside Cuomo fundraiser
Democrat and Chronicle
Gary McLendon

WEBSTER - About a dozen anti-fracking protesters tried to send a message to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and local democratic party leaders at a big-bucks fundraiser on Wednesday hosted by prominent area developer Wayne LeChase. But, party leaders didn't stop to talk, and protesters couldn't get by blazer-wearing event organizers and Webster police to attend the $5,000-to-$20,000-a-ticket fundraising event because they weren't on the guest list. LeChase and about 50 prominent business and labor leaders were expected to attend the event, which is estimated to have raised nearly $200,000 for Cuomo's re-election bid in November.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Transcanada has third catastrophic pipeline leak in 9 months.
The Council of Canadians


Early this morning a natural gas pipeline owned by TransCanada ruptured in Benton Harbor, Michigan causing the evacuation of over 500 people. This is the third catastrophic failure for TransCanada since January of this year. The Berrien County Sheriff's Office issued this release around 6 a.m.: "At approximately 2am on Tuesday, September 16, 2014 a natural gas line affiliated with TransCanada, leaked at/near the 100 block of North Blue Creek Rd, in Benton Twp. Cause of the leak is currently unknown. Emergency responders, consisting of local police (Benton Twp), County Deputies and Benton Twp Fire Personnel assisted with evacuating residents within one (1) mile radius of the gas line leak. Vehicular traffic was also re-routed away from this area. No known injuries have been reported at the time of this release and authorities are conducting air monitoring. TransCanada pipeline representatives were working on shutting off and/or re-routing the natural gas flow from this leaking gas line." TransCanada’s other two catastrophic failures were in Rocky Mountain House, Alberta in February and in Otterburne, Manitoba in January. TransCanada is seeking permission to convert parts of the same pipeline that failed in Otterburne to carry diluted bitumen as part of their Energy East pipeline project from Alberta to New Brunswick where up to 90% of its 1.1 million barrel per day capacity will be exported unrefined. Watch our 4 minute video handimation about the project here: www.canadians.org/energyeast101  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Fracking boom increases 'triple tragedies' on Texas highways
Houston Chronicle
Lise Olsen

Drilling crew fatigue major factor in number of multi-fatality wrecks on roads across state  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
New York Panel Tackles "Fighting Fracking to Save the Climate" Ahead of Historic People's Climate March
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

NEW YORK— As thousands of Americans concerned about global warming converge on New York City for the historic People’s Climate March this weekend, a diverse panel of experts, including Dr. Sandra Steingraber and an activist confronting fracking in her own community, will take part in a panel discussion called “Fighting Fracking to Save the Climate.”   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Kinder Morgan Applies For Pipeline Pre-Filing Approval From FERC
The Groton Line
Art Campbell

Pretty much right on its announced schedule, Kinder Morgan subsidiary Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company (TGP) filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on September 15, requesting permission to use FERC’s pre-filing procedure on its proposed Northeast Energy Direct Project. The Northeast Energy Direct natural gas pipeline would run from a pipeline distribution center in Wright, New York through 45 northern Massachusetts towns, including Groton and its neighboring towns, to anther pipeline terminal in Dracut, Massachusetts.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Town enacts moratorium on fracking-related activities
Paststar
Amanda May Metzger

LAKE GEORGE -- The statewide moratorium placed on fracking in 2008 so officials could study its health effects remains, but in the meantime the town of Lake George will do its own research after enacting a three-year moratorium on any activities related to high-volume hydraulic fracturing.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Fair Lawn to consider 3-year moratorium on fracking
NorthJersey.com
Mary Diduch

FAIR LAWN – The borough council will consider a three-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing and related activities at its meeting next week. The resolution was unanimously approved Tuesday night after the council’s Republican majority shut down a plan to look into an ordinance that would ban fracking in the borough indefinitely.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Farmer lawsuit blames crop loss on oil companies' waste injections
The Bakersfield Californian
John Cox

A local farming company has sued four Kern County oil producers, claiming their waste disposal injections contaminated groundwater it uses for irrigation. The lawsuit filed Monday in Kern County Superior Court says plaintiff Palla Farms LLC had to uproot a large number -- possibly hundreds -- of cherry trees because of alleged negligence by Crimson Resource Management Corp., Dole Enterprises Inc., E&B Natural Resources Management Corp. and San Joaquin Facilities Management Inc.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Committee taking 45 more days to review fracking rules
Chicago Tribune
Julie Wernau

The Illinois legislature's Joint Committee on Administrative Rules will take an additional 45 days to review rules that would govern horizontal hydraulic fracturing in the state, saying they would like time to review the complicated regulations. The 12-member committee met Tuesday in Chicago to review the rules — one of 52 items on its agenda — which attempt to incorporate more than 30,000 comments the Illinois Department of Natural Resources received about its first draft from all sides of the issue into a final set of regulations.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Study: Leaky natural gas wells, not fracking, taint water
Times Call
Seth Borenstein

WASHINGTON — The drilling procedure called fracking didn't cause much-publicized cases of tainted groundwater in areas of Pennsylvania and Texas, a new study finds. Instead, it blames the contamination on problems in pipes and seals in natural gas wells. After looking at dozens of cases of suspected contamination, the scientists focused on eight hydraulically fractured wells in those states, where they chemically linked the tainted water to the gas wells. They then used chemical analysis to figure out when in the process of gas extraction methane leaked into groundwater.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
NYC Climate Convergence: The Warm Up to People’s Climate March
EcoNews
Anastasia Pantsios

As environmental activists pour into New York City for Sunday’s People’s Climate March, expected to be the largest climate action in history, some climate advocates will already be there participating in the NYC Climate Convergence, a conference advocating for “people, planet and peace over profit,” Sept. 19-21. EcoWatch will be live streaming many parts of the event courtesy of @StopMotionsolo, so if you can’t get to NYC, be sure to stay-tuned to EcoWatch. Subscribing to EcoWatch’s Top News of the Day is the best way to stay connected.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Hearing on pipeline expansion draws labor, opposition groups
Westchester County Business Journal
Mark Lungariello

The crowd at the Cortlandt Manor community center Monday night was reminiscent of the audience of a wedding that neither side approves of – two very different families only separated by the aisle down the middle. On one side were residents opposed to the planned expansion of a natural gas pipeline that runs near nuclear power plant Indian Point – many of them wearing red T-shirts with white lettering on their backs that said “Our lives are on the line.” On the other side were loud, sign-waving union members with orange T-shirts and blue lettering. On their backs were the words “Our jobs are on the line.” Peekskill Mayor Frank Catalina, a Republican, was among a procession of elected officials who stepped to the podium to discuss the pipeline. Catalina said he took offense to the notion that opposing the expansion meant critics were “anti-union.”  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Obama delays key power plant rule of signature climate change plan
The Guardian
Suzanne Goldenberg

Barack Obama applied the brakes to the most critical component of his climate change plan on Tuesday, slowing the process of setting new rules cutting carbon pollution from power plants, and casting a shadow over a landmark United Nations’ summit on global warming. The proposed power plant rules were meant to be the signature environmental accomplishment of Obama’s second term. The threat of a delay in their implementation comes just one week before a heavily anticipated UN summit where officials had been looking to Obama to show leadership on climate change.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Need a fracking supporter? Hire a homeless person.
Grist
Eve Andrews

In bizarre energy industry news of the day, the North Carolina Energy Coalition seems to have brought in some homeless men to stand in as fracking supporters at a state hearing on developing fracking operations in the state. The men were bussed 200 miles from Winston-Salem to Cullowhee, N.C., where the hearing took place, for the day. From Asheville’s Citizen-Times: “They were clueless,” said Bettie “Betsy” Ashby, a member of the Jackson County Coalition Against Fracking. “At least two of them I met definitely came from a homeless shelter. One of them even apologized to me and said, ‘I didn’t know they were trying to do this to me.’ One said, ‘I did it for the…’ and then he rubbed his fingers together like ‘for the money.'”  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Let’s Reject the ‘Inevitable’
The New York Times
Mark Bittman

This Sunday’s “People’s Climate March” in New York City could be the biggest demonstration yet for action on climate change. The march is scheduled to coincide with the United Nations Climate Summit, which begins two days later. Despite the advance billing and the official nature of the summit, the march is what matters. The U.N. Summit will a clubby gathering of world leaders and their representatives who will try to figure out ways to reward polluters for pretending to fix a problem for which they’re responsible in the first place; a fiasco. That’s not hyperbole, either. The summit is a little like a professional wrestling match: There appears to be action but it’s fake, and the winner is predetermined. The loser will be anyone who expects serious government movement dictating industry reductions in emissions. We can change what seems inevitable; it will just take sacrifice and hard work, what Klein calls “Marshall Plan levels of response.” We are nowhere near that now, though we can point to thus-far successful opposition to destructive projects like the Keystone XL pipeline and the ongoing moratorium on fracking in New York State, or support for the success of the divestment movement. These are important, but compared to the scope of the threat they are not nearly enough. We have to think bigger, and we have that opportunity. The same things that can fix climate can fix many other problems — agriculture, health care, inequality, campaign finance — because to be successful the climate movement must be a pro-democracy movement. That would change everything.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Beaver County farm challenges compressor station permit
Post Gazette
Don Hopey

The owners of one of the region’s oldest and most successful organic farms in New Sewickley Township, Beaver County, are challenging the validity of township land use ordinances that allowed a Marcellus Shale gas compressor station next to their farm. Don and Rebecca Kretschmann, who have operated their 80-acre organic farm since 1979, filed the appeal in Beaver County Common Pleas Court Friday. The appeal alleges that the township’s zoning and oil and gas ordinances fail to preserve and protect existing agricultural uses in the rural community 25 miles north of Pittsburgh, and rely on portions of state Act 13 -- the amendment to Pennsylvania’s oil and gas law -- that have been declared unconstitutional by the state Supreme Court.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Panel Wants More Time For Fracking Rules
WICS.com


A panel of lawmakers says it now wants more time to decide whether rules written to govern fracking in Illinois can take effect. The panel received the ruled from the Department of Natural Resources back on August 29. That means it originally had 45 days, until mid-October, to act on them. But the panel has now exercised a 45 day extension. It's asking DNR to make sure the rules following the fracking law lawmakers approved last year.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
The Harvesting Of Coal Methane Has Caused A Dramatic Rise In Quakes In Parts Of The US
Business Insider
Chris Pash

The deep injection of wastewater underground is responsible for the dramatic rise in the number of earthquakes in Colorado and New Mexico since 2001, according to a study by experts from the US Geological Survey. The Raton Basin, which stretches from southern Colorado into northern New Mexico, was seismically quiet until shortly after major fluid injection began in 1999. Since 2001, there have been 16 magnitude earthquakes greater than 3.8 (including 5 and 5.3) compared to only one the previous 30 years. The increase in earthquakes is limited to the area of industrial activity and within 5 kms of wastewater injection wells.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Little done since 2011 fracking decision
delaware online
Jeff Montgomery

Three years ago in November, Delaware plugged up hopes for a multi-billion dollar well-drilling boom across natural gas-rich areas of the Delaware River Basin. Gov. Jack Markell announced that he would oppose a Delaware River Basin Commission plan permitting drilling and underground hydrofracturing, or "fracking," in the 13,000 square-mile watershed without clearer environmental safeguards and full public review of proposed regulations.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Essential Resources for Fighting Fracking
Bill Huston's Blog
Bill Huston

Friends, if you want a series of booklets to give to legislators or anyone to help them understand the reason and necessity for a ban, Our criteria are that these sources should be Compelling stories, good science, good journalism Peer reviewed (if appropriate) and sourced/footnoted, mainstream sources Any one of these could stand-alone as the ONE source you could give someone. Extra credit for beautiful presentation. Available free online in PDF form.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Little done since 2011 fracking decision
News Journal
Jeff Montgomery

Three years ago in November, Delaware plugged up hopes for a multi-billion dollar well-drilling boom across natural gas-rich areas of the Delaware River Basin.... Today, little has changed, although drilling supporters have talked of lawsuits and urged the commission's new director to follow through with agency claims that it is working on the regulation issue. Environmental groups have meanwhile counted the impasse as a partial win.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Broken gas wells fuel support for electronic monitors
New Castle News
John Finnerty

A former environmental official said it’s time for the state to again update rules for gas well construction, less than four years after the last sweeping set of standards was implemented. “Time marches on,” said John Hanger, former secretary of environmental protection. “This is a dynamic industry and there are changes in technology and changes in practices.” Hanger oversaw a dramatic rewrite of well standards that took effect in February 2011. Those were prompted by a surge in drilling activity in the Marcellus shale region in northeastern Pennsylvania, which led to revelations that gas from wells was seeping into drinking water supplies.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
New Report on Water Impacts of Shale Gas Development
Breaking Energy
Edward Dodge

On September 12 World Resources Institute had an event to unveil their new report on the fresh water impacts of shale gas development. The WRI report examines the availability of freshwater across shale plays globally. Shale resources of natural gas, natural gas liquids and tight oil are extracted using hydrofracking techniques that require substantial quantities of water for every well drilled. The report offers the first global overview that cross references fresh water availability against shale gas resources. The report highlights the need to be aware that many of the world’s shale plays are in water constrained regions and that water constraints can potentially limit the ability to develop the resources.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Council votes against fracking despite warning Minister may overturn clause
Irish Times
Marese McDonagh

Leitrim county councillors yesterday voted, for a second time, for an effective ban on fracking in their development plan – despite a warning that the clause was illegal and could be overturned by Minister for Environment Alan Kelly. Next Monday, Minister for Energy Alex White will meet a joint delegation from Leitrim and Cavan county councils to discuss the issue of hydraulic fracturing for gas.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Environmental group calls for fracking ban
Philly.com


Food & Water Watch, the national environmental group, has released a report calling for a ban on hydraulic fracturing, the extraction technique responsible for the resurgence in U.S. oil and gas production. The report argues the health harms and air, water and climate pollution caused by fracking offset any environmental gains from switching fuels to cleaner-burning natural gas.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Retail Horizons: Will fracking constrain business growth?
Green Biz.com
Jacob Park

How we produce the energy we need, how much it costs and how we use it will all have profound consequences for the future of retail business growth and the transition to a sustainable economy. Among other things, these factors strongly will affect supply chains, manufacturing and consumer confidence. Although the energy system is too vast and complex to quickly summarize, a peek at one aspect of it — fracking for oil and gas — hints at the myriad ways in which changes underway could affect the future of retail and sustainability.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Challenging the economics of climate solutions
The Daily Climate
Marianne Lavelle

Nations don't have to choose between promoting prosperity and tackling climate change, according to a report released today by an international panel of government and business leaders. In an effort to shape next week's United Nations Climate Summit, the group of high-ranking executives and officials detailed how countries can grow their economies at the same time they act to halt global warming.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Did energy group bus homeless in to support fracking?
Citizens-Times
John Boyle

CULLOWHEE – Homeless men unfamiliar with fracking were bused from Winston-Salem to a state hearing Friday on the controversial technique for extracting natural gas, an effort to bolster a pro-fracking turnout, according to an environmental group and a published report. "They were clueless," said Bettie "Betsy" Ashby, a member of the Jackson County Coalition Against Fracking. "At least two of them I met definitely came from a homeless shelter. One of them even apologized to me and said, 'I didn't know they were trying to do this to me.' One said, 'I did it for the...' and then he rubbed his fingers together like 'for the money.'" Several of the men were wearing turquoise shirts or hats that said "Shale Yes" on the front and "Energy Creates Jobs" and "N.C. Energy Coalition.com" on the back.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Fixing Climate Change May Add No Costs, Report Says
The New York Times
JUSTIN GILLIS

In decades of public debate about global warming, one assumption has been accepted by virtually all factions: that tackling it would necessarily be costly. But a new report casts doubt on that idea, declaring that the necessary fixes could wind up being effectively free. A global commission will announce its finding on Tuesday that an ambitious series of measures to limit emissions would cost $4 trillion or so over the next 15 years, an increase of roughly 5 percent over the amount that would likely be spent anyway on new power plants, transit systems and other infrastructure.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Experts Call on Obama to Ban Fracking in Lead Up to People’s Climate March
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Americans Against Fracking, a coalition of more than 270 national and local groups opposed to hydraulic fracturing, held a media teleconference today to call on President Obama to ban fracking in the lead up to the People’s Climate March.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Mark Ruffalo calls on Obama to ban fracking ahead of UN climate summit
The Guardian
Amanda Holpuch

Actor and activist Mark Ruffalo called on US president Barack Obama to ban fracking and make the US the renewable energy capital of the world on Tuesday. Ruffalo made the plea in a press call hosted by Food & Water Watch, which released a report on Tuesday tying the controversial practice of fracking to climate change. The report comes days ahead of next week’s UN climate summit in New York. “By stopping this fracking, it doesn’t mean that we have to go backwards – we don’t have to take an economic hit or lose jobs,” Ruffalo said. “It means moving forward with clean energy, the power of the 21st century.”  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
$2.9 Million Fracking Verdict Against Texas Oil Company Survives Another Challenge
InsideClimate News
David Hasemyer

The stage has been set for an appeal of a high profile verdict against a Texas oil and gas company after a judge refused to grant a new trial in the case of a family sickened by noxious air emissions. Judge Mark Greenberg has denied a motion by Aruba Petroleum for a new trial, letting stand the $2.9 million jury award to Lisa and Bob Parr who sued the company after gas and oil wells surrounded their once rural ranch south of Dallas. Greenberg's one sentence order didn't offer a reason for his decision. It simply said: "Aruba Petroleum's motion for new trial is ... denied."   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Future of Fracking Will Influence November Election for Governor
WXXI News
Karen DeWitt

The issue of hydro fracking played a role in the recent Democratic primary for governor in New York, and those who oppose the gas drilling process hope it will influence the general election, as well. Governor Cuomo, once on a fast track to begin the natural gas drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing in New York, has put his decision on hold while his admisntration is conducting a health review that began two years ago. Cuomo, asked about the future of fracking in the state one day after the Democratic primary, said he’s still reserving judgment.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Fracktivists urge Obama to change his thinking on what is 'climate friendly'
Legislative Gazette
Roger Hannigan Gilson

Americans Against Fracking, a coalition of more than 200 organizations opposed to the controversial drilling technique, called on President Barack Obama to change the course of his energy policy ahead of the People's Climate March in New York City on Sept. 21. In a conference call with media on Tuesday morning, a panel addressed new research on hydrofracking's release of methane gas and took a hard stance against using hydrofracking-extracted natural gas as a "bridge fuel" to clean energy.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Last Stop for High Profile Fracking Suit: Supreme Court
The Tyee
Andrew Nikiforuk

The Alberta Court of Appeal has effectively ruled that one of the nation's most powerful regulators can violate the nation's Charter of Rights and Freedoms by banishing citizens and falsely branding them as a security threats. That's exactly what happened to oil patch consultant Jessica Ernst. She is now suing the regulator, the Alberta government and Encana Corporation over the alleged contamination of her groundwater by the shallow fracking of coal seams in central Alberta nearly a decade ago. But the Court of Appeal, which has the power to make law or correct errors in law, argues in a densely worded 11-page decision that Energy Resources Conservation Board (now the Alberta Energy Regulator) owes no duty of care to individual landowners harmed by industrial activity. Furthermore the decision states that an immunity clause in the Energy Resources Conservation Act (Section 43) protects the powerful regulator from any lawsuit or Charter claim regardless of how the regulator has treated individual citizens.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Scientists Find "Direct Link" Between Earthquakes and Process Used For Oil and Gas Drilling
Climate Progress
Emily Atkin

A team of scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey have found evidence “directly linking” the uptick in Colorado and New Mexico earthquakes since 2001 to wastewater injection, a process widely used in the controversial technique of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, and conventional drilling. In a study to be published in the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America on Tuesday, the scientists presented “several lines of evidence [that] suggest the earthquakes in the area are directly related to the disposal of wastewater” deep underground, according to a BSSA press release. Fracking and conventional natural gas companies routinely dispose of large amounts of wastewater underground after drilling. During fracking, the water is mixed with chemicals and sand, to “fracture” underground shale rock formations and make gas easier to extract.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Panel Delays Decision on ILL hydraulic fracturing rules amid industry, environmental concerns
AP via The Republic


CHICAGO — A legislative panel said Tuesday that it wants more time to decide whether rules written by the Department of Natural Resources to govern hydraulic fracturing in Illinois can take effect. The legislature's Joint Committee on Administrative Rules received proposed rules for high-volume oil and gas extraction from the DNR on Aug. 29, after the agency reworded some rules based on more than 30,000 comments on it original draft. But industry and environmental groups said they would ask JCAR to seek dozens of changes. The panel originally had 45 days —until mid-October — to act on the rules, but exercised a 45-day extension, asking the DNR to ensure the rules comply with the intent of a law passed last year after intense negotiations that included industry and environmental groups.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
How Residents of a Rural New Mexico County Fought the Fracking Barons and Won—For Now
Resilience
Nina Bunker Ruiz

My parents live in Chacon, New Mexico, in a wind-chapped finger of high-mountain Mora Valley. My grandparents were determined to spend their last days there and are buried in Chacon’s campo santo. Every delicious summer of my childhood, I played in and along the Mora River, and now my children splash in the same cold mountain stream. Energy companies are seeking permits to explore natural gas extraction through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in Mora County. But the area’s traditional livelihoods, farming and ranching, rely on clean, healthy rivers and streams. New Mexico has recently suffered several years of severe drought. Millions of gallons of water are used to frack, and water contamination and earthquakes are increasingly paired with this technology.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Free speech case springs from fracking dispute
Ohio Citizen Action


WEATHERFORD, TX — “Steve Lipsky’s tainted water well had already stirred national debate about the impacts of oil and gas production. Now it stars in a free speech dispute that has landed in Texas’ highest court – the biggest test of a state law meant to curb attempts to stifle public protest. So much methane has migrated into the well on Lipsky’s Parker County estate that he can ignite the stream that flows from it with the flick of a barbeque lighter. The Wisconsin transplant blames the phenomenon on nearby gas drilling in the Barnett Shale. In the past three years, he has shared those suspicions in Youtube videos, the film Gasland Part II and in news reports.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
PUSH TO OVERRIDE CHRISTIE'S VETO OF FRACKING WASTE BAN
wbgo.org
Julie Daurio

Environmentalists and state lawmakers are pushing to override Governor Christie’s veto of a bill that would ban fracking waste from New Jersey. There’s currently no fracking going on in New Jersey, but some of the waste from Pennsylvania gas drilling operations has been ending up across the state line. Jim Walsh is regional director of Food and Water Watch. He says despite the Governor’s veto, there’s strong public support for banning the toxic wastewater.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Fracking raises concerns among community leaders, study indicates
phys.org


(Phys.org) —Community leaders in areas that are considering hydraulic fracturing express a number of concerns about the practice's potential impact on public health, according to a new study co-authored by the University of Cincinnati (UC) College of Medicine researcher.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Natural gas company seeks federal OK for pipeline
Modesto Bee
Philip Marcelo AP

BOSTON — An energy company is seeking federal approval for a natural gas pipeline through northern Massachusetts that has already garnered significant local opposition. Houston-based Kinder Morgan Inc. filed a request with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Monday. The company is seeking to use the agency's "pre-filing procedures," a voluntary process that will help the firm identify and resolve environmental issues before a formal application is filed, Kinder Morgan spokesman Richard Wheatley said. He said the company, through its subsidiary Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., would file detailed draft environmental reports that the public would be able to comment on.   [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
NATURAL GAS: 'Virtual pipelines' are connecting consumers to gas in absence of infrastructure
E&E Publishing
Saquib Rahim

Entrepreneurs have fashioned a way to get natural gas to consumers awaiting a proper pipeline: Build them a "virtual pipeline" instead. Around the country, a few small businesses have found gas-hungry consumers who can't get what they need from the grid, either because their local pipelines are too small or because they don't have any at all.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
McAuliffe dismays foes of Mountain Valley Pipeline
Roanoke.com
Duncan Adams

That was the reaction among many Floyd County residents organizing opposition to the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline when, during a Sept. 2 news conference, Gov. Terry McAuliffe touted the economic benefits of a separate interstate natural gas pipeline envisioned for a different region of the state. A news release that day from McAuliffe’s office described the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline as “an energy superhighway” that would create thousands of jobs during construction, yield about $1.42 billion in economic activity and generate hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in state tax revenue.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Evacuation order over after pipeline rupture in Berrien County
WSBT


BENTON CHARTER Twp., Mich. - After a long day of waiting, just moments ago people started allowing 500 people from rural Berrien County, evacuated after a gas pipeline ruptured, back into their homes.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
California Pipeline Disaster Brings More Scandal for PG&E
Bloomberg
Mark Chediak

A deadly pipeline explosion that shattered a California town four years ago continues to rip through the state agency weighing a record penalty for the disaster. The president of the California Public Utilities Commission asked his chief of staff to resign and recused himself from the case after “inappropriate e-mail exchanges” with PG&E Corp. (PCG:US) raised questions about bias, according to a statement from the commission yesterday. The CPUC may decide within weeks whether to levy a proposed $1.4 billion penalty -- the biggest safety fine in the state’s history -- against PG&E for the 2010 explosion of a natural gas pipeline that killed eight people in San Bruno.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Audit: National Grid shut off gas to homes in winter months
Capital NY
Scott Waldman

ALBANY—National Grid has repeatedly shut off gas to homes during cold winter months without notifying local social service agencies, a new state audit shows. The audit by the state Department of Public Services also lists dozens of gas leaks across a swath of National Grid's upstate territory in the Capital Region and Central New York. The state found 179 “high risk” violations as well as an additional 263 violations considered “other risk” after April 2013, according to records recently filed with the Public Service Commission.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Fight Against Climate Change Seen Driving Economic Growth
Bloomberg
Stefan Nicola

Government and industry leaders need not choose between fighting climate change or growing the world’s economy. They can do both, according to a new study. Countries can expand their economies through emissions reductions in cities, land use and energy, according to a report released today by the Global Commission on the Economy & Climate, a panel set up by seven nations including the U.K. to advise on the best ways to tackle global warming. The report, which found that about $90 trillion will be invested in city infrastructure over the next 15 years, comes a week before world leaders head to New York for a climate summit hosted by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Albany area opposition to natural gas pipeline grows
Albany Herald
Carlton Fletcher

ALBANY — As the deadline draws nearer for a federal ruling on a proposed $3 billion natural gas pipeline expected to run through a portion of Dougherty County — a pipeline and compressor station called a “monstrosity” by one Albany resident Monday — a growing coalition of area residents is mounting a concerted effort to stop construction of the 465-mile project that will deliver natural gas from central Alabama to central Florida. ##Local anti-pipeline activists joined the Radium Springs Neighborhood Association Monday in asking the Dougherty County Commission to facilitate a meeting with state and federal officials and agencies to discuss local concerns about the pipeline. The group also asked the commission during a work session to enact a noise ordinance that would impact a proposed compressor station that would be built in the county.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
To Save the Climate, We Need a Ban on Fracking
Food & Water Watch
Wenonah Hauter Blog

Fracking is an issue that touches on every aspect of our lives — the water we drink, the air we breathe, the health of our communities — and it is also impacting the global climate on which we all depend. With the upcoming People’s Climate March and United Nations Climate Summit in New York City, it is more important than ever that the climate effects of fracking are addressed. This is why today, Food & Water Watch released The Urgent Case for a Ban on Fracking. With mounting evidence about the dangerous impacts of fracking and the immediacy of the impending climate crisis, this report lays out the urgent case for a ban.  [Full Story]

Sep 16, 2014
Landmark fracking study finds no water pollution
Washington Post
Associated Press

PITTSBURGH — The final report from a landmark federal study on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, found no evidence that chemicals or brine water from the gas drilling process moved upward to contaminate drinking water at a site in western Pennsylvania.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
'Flawed' oil spill drill offers lessons to state, feds
Poughkeepsie Journal
John Ferro

In the aftermath of a high-profile, multi-agency oil spill drill in New Windsor last year, officials were pleased by the mostly positive news coverage.... The concerns are reflected in reports and emails obtained by the Journal through more than a dozen state and federal open-records requests, and through interviews with industry experts and officials from local, state and federal agencies.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Study: Water contamination in frack-happy Texas and Pennslyvania is anything but natural
Salon
Lindsay Abrams

Natural gas drilling is responsible for contaminating drinking water in Pennsylvania and Texas, a new study finds. The direct cause is methane leaking from natural gas wells. But make no mistake: This is a fracking problem. A team of scientists from Duke, Ohio State, Stanford, Dartmouth and the University of Rochester used a new process, involving noble gas and hydrocarbon tracers, to analyze the gas content of 130 water wells in the two states. Their findings, published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, show that methane found in drinking water wells usually comes from natural sources. But in eight cases — seven in Pennsylvania, one in Texas — they proved that the methane had escaped from flawed natural gas wells, meaning drilling was responsible.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Research Links Drilling Activities to Water Contamination in North Texas
State Impact PA
Mose Buchele

For years, some residents of Parker County in North Texas have believed that nearby gas drilling was responsible for high levels of methane in neighborhood water wells. Research published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences appears to back that up. The study looked at water contamination in Texas and Pennsylvania. It suggests that faulty cement jobs on drilling wells could be at fault in North Texas. Cement is poured between the rock wall and the steel tubing of oil and gas wells to block contaminants.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
UN Climate Summit Approaches, as Evidence Against UNnatural Gas Rises
Huffington Post
Belinda Waymouth

The United States has its foot hard on the natural gas pedal, as we careen towards United Nations Climate Summit Program 2014. Next week world leaders will gather at U.N headquarters in New York, and once again doggedly attempt to limit global temperature increase to only 2 degrees Celsius. The U.S is hedging its bets with the lesser of fossil fuel evils -- natural gas -- as a way to avoid the calamity of climate change. But is this gas really the answer to run away carbon emissions, polar ice caps disappearing and extreme weather woes?  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Study: Bad fracking techniques let methane flow into drinking water
Washington Post
Steven Mufson

Ever since the boom in hydraulic fracturing of shale gas formations picked up pace about five years ago, foes of "fracking" have argued that the cracking of shale formations was causing the migration of methane, or natural gas, into drinking water wells and aquifers. But a new study has cast doubt on that explanation and points to different culprits: faulty drilling and well completion techniques.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Pennsylvania Plant Agrees to Stop Dumping Partially-Treated Fracking Wastewater in River After Lengthy Lawsuit
DeSmogBlog
Sharon Kelly

A Pennsylvania wastewater treatment plant alleged to have dumped toxic and radioactive materials into the Allegheny River has agreed to construct a new treatment facility, under a settlement announced Thursday with an environmental organization that had filed suit against the plant. Back in 2011, Pennsylvania made national headlines because the state's treatment plants – including municipal sewage plants and industrial wastewater treatment plants like Waste Treatment Corporation – were accepting drilling and fracking wastewater laden with pollutants that they could not remove.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Sentinels and Skeptics of the Shale
Slate
Adam Briggle

What can we learn from those who live closest to fracking? In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, back when scientists used to experiment on themselves, the Scottish physiologist John Scott Haldane would sit in sealed chambers huffing toxic gasses and recording the effects on his body. This earned him something of a reputation, so he was asked by the British secretary of state to identify the gases being used by the Germans in World War I. His research on the frontlines led to the invention of the gas mask. But before this, Haldane figured out that lethal component of the “afterdamp” responsible for so many coal miner deaths was actually carbon monoxide, which he (naturally) tested on his own lungs. In the 1890s, he introduced the use of small animals like canaries to act as detectors of carbon monoxide in coal mines. Their small size and fast metabolism cause them to show symptoms of toxic exposure in time to give advance warning for the miners. There is now widespread use of animals as sentinels of environmental health hazards, which is the basic idea behind Michelle Bamberger and Robert Oswald’s new book The Real Costs of Fracking: How America’s Shale Gas Boom Is Threatening Our Families, Pets, and Food. What they report is enough to make you think that the state ought to distribute some of Haldane’s gas masks to those living in heavily fracked areas—or maybe we just need more research.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Weak wells not fracking caused US gas leaks into water
BBC News
Mat McGrath

A new study suggests that the contamination of drinking water by shale gas is due to faulty wells and not hydraulic fracturing. Researchers in the US analysed the gas content in 130 water wells in Pennsylvania and Texas. They were able to trace the methane found in the water to problems with the casing or lining of wells drilled to extract the gas. The report appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In many parts of the US, the migration of gas into drinking water has raised questions about the fracking process.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Gas production blamed for rise in Colorado, New Mexico quakes
Yahoo News
Daniel Wallis

DENVER (Reuters) - The deep injection of wastewater underground by energy companies during methane gas extraction has caused a dramatic rise in the number of earthquakes in Colorado and New Mexico since 2001, U.S. government scientists said in a study released on Monday. The study by U.S. Geological Survey researchers is the latest to link energy production methods to an increase in quakes in regions where those techniques are used.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Town enacts moratorium on fracking-related activities
Post Star.com
Amanda May Metzger

LAKE GEORGE -- The statewide moratorium placed on fracking in 2008 so officials could study its health effects remains, but in the meantime the town of Lake George will do its own research after enacting a three-year moratorium on any activities related to high-volume hydraulic fracturing. There are no known shale formations rich in natural gas in Lake George , but its most notable resource, the lake, could carry its own appeal to drilling companies, activists said. Concerns about accepting waste from the drilling process allowed in neighboring states also prompted the town action. The moratorium unanimously passed by the Town Board at the regular monthly meeting Sept. 8 prohibits all “support activities” related to the drilling process for three years while the town studies and assesses the process and whether to address the practice in the town’s Comprehensive Plan and its zoning ordinance  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Homes Near Gas Wells in Texas Face Worsening Water Issues
Bloomberg
Mark Drajem

Homes in a Texas community face worsening water contamination caused by nearby gas production, according to a study released today. The findings from an analysis by independent academics counter statements by driller Range Resources Corp. (RRC) and state regulators, who have said their evidence shows gas drilling wasn’t responsible for the presence of explosive methane in the homeowners’ water wells. Separate testing that found evidence of contamination from drilling at seven areas in Pennsylvania also was included in the study.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Scientists find Parker County water wells contaminated by drilling
Weatherford Democrat
Cristin Coyne

Using a new method of analysis, a team of researchers from five U.S. universities has determined that oil and gas activity, specifically faulty well integrity, led to the contamination of several water wells in the southern Parker County area. Scientists have tied poor casing and cementing of oil and gas production wells to methane found in well water in Parker County, as well as seven areas in Pennsylvania, contradicting statements from state regulators and the industry, who claim their research shows oil and gas industry activity has not caused the issue.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
‘This Changes Everything’ Including the Anti-Fracking Movement
EcoNews
Sandra Steingraber

Among its many demonstrations, This Changes Everything, reveals how the grassroots anti-fracking movement is right where it should be—except for decades-old backroom deals between Big Green groups and the oil and gas industry that hold the movement down like a cartoon ball and chain. But I’m getting ahead of myself. So, let me start again: You need to read Naomi Klein’s new book, This Changes Everything, which delivers a message so big that the title alone pushes both the author’s name and the subtitle (“Capitalism vs. the Climate”) right off the front cover.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Texas drinking water tainted by natural gas operations, scientists find
The Dallas Morning News
RANDY LEE LOFTIS

The shale-gas boom of recent years has contaminated drinking-water wells in North Texas’ Barnett Shale and the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania, a study published Monday concludes. The study, by researchers from five universities, concludes that neither drilling itself nor the hydraulic fracturing that follows it is directly to blame. Instead, gas found in water wells appeared to have leaked from defective casing and cementing in gas wells, meant to protect groundwater; or from gas formations not linked to zones where fracking took place. “Our data do not suggest that horizontal drilling or hydraulic fracturing has provided a conduit to connect deep Marcellus or Barnett formations directly to surface aquifers,” the authors wrote.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Drinking water contaminated by shale gas boom in Texas and Pennslyvania Faulty natural gas well casings blamed in study for methane leakage in Barnett Shale and the Marcellus formation
The Guardian
Suzanne Goldenberg

The natural gas boom resulting from fracking has contaminated drinking water in Texas and Pennsylvania, a new study said on Monday. However, the researchers said the gas leaks were due to defective gas well production – and were not a direct result of horizontal drilling, or fracking. The study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences validated some of the concerns raised by homeowners in the Barnett Shale of Texas and the Marcellus formation in Pennsylvania about natural gas leaking into their water supply.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
President Obama has a huge gas problem
Aljazeera America
Peter Moskowitz

Ahead of the People's Climate March, activists say Obama must address fracking if he wants to leave a meaningful legacy Later this month, hundreds of delegates will gather inside the U.N. to talk about climate change. President Barack Obama plans to attend the climate summit, and reportedly wants work on a deal with other world leaders to “name and shame” countries that aren’t actively pursuing serious climate action.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Gas leaks from faulty wells linked to contamination in some groundwater
Phys.org
Pam Frost Gorder

A study has pinpointed the likely source of most natural gas contamination in drinking-water wells associated with hydraulic fracturing, and it's not the source many people may have feared. What's more, the problem may be fixable: improved construction standards for cement well linings and casings at hydraulic fracturing sites.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Contaminated Water Caused By Leaky Wells, Not Fracking Process, Study Says
Huffington Post
Seth Borenstein

WASHINGTON (AP) — The drilling procedure called fracking didn't cause much-publicized cases of tainted groundwater in areas of Pennsylvania and Texas, a new study finds. Instead, it blames the contamination on problems in pipes and seals in natural gas wells. After looking at dozens of cases of suspected contamination, the scientists focused on eight hydraulically fractured wells in those states, where they chemically linked the tainted water to the gas wells. They then used chemical analysis to figure out when in the process of gas extraction methane leaked into groundwater.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Alberta woman loses fracking case appeal
CTV


EDMONTON -- An Alberta woman has lost her appeal to sue the province's energy regulator over hydraulic fracturing on her property. Jessica Ernst launched a $33-million lawsuit against the Alberta government, the province's energy regulator and energy company Encana (TSX:ECA). She claims gas wells fracked around her land northeast of Calgary unleashed hazardous amounts of methane and ethane gas and other chemicals into her water well.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Fracking Techniques Deemed Corporate Secret
Arkansas Business
George Waldon

The refinements of directional drilling have enhanced shale plays with increased opportunities afforded by lateral boring. But when it comes to the below-ground magic of fracking, innovative techniques sometimes are buried in corporate secrecy.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Academic studies clash on fracking health consequences
Akron Beacon Journal
Jim Mackinnon

The (Wall Street) Cheat Sheet news site looks at conflicting academic studies on the health consequences of fracking. Cheat Sheet: "Two academic studies of the health dangers of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, have produced different conclusions. "One, conducted by Yale University, said people living near fracking sites report increased health problems. "The other, by Penn State University, says fracking water stays underground, far below the groundwater supplies that people use for drinking, and poses no threat.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Frustration Over Fracking Could Play Role In November Elections
Here & Now


Communities in Colorado have been engaged in a political fight with the state to get more local control over oil and gas drilling. It’s a battle many thought was heading to the ballot box this November, until a last minute compromise stopped the initiative in its tracks.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
New anti-fracking committee meets Tuesday in Penn Yan
Brighton-Pittsford Post
Gatehouse Media

PENN YAN — The newly formed Committee of Towns — designed as a resource for the anti-hydrofracking efforts in the region — will hold its first meeting from 7 to 9:15 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 16 in the auditorium of the Yates County Office Building, 417 Liberty St. Read more: http://www.brightonpittsfordpost.com/article/20140915/News/140919784#ixzz3DRdQfkgp  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Communities Contemplating Fracking Grapple with Long List of Concerns
URMC


A new report has examined the host of potential health-related issues that communities in areas of the country suitable for natural gas extraction may face. The goal of the study was to determine how future research can best address communities’ health questions and inform their decision-making.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Yoko Ono tweets support for Liverpool anti-fracking demo
Liverpool Echo
Chloe Gaughan

Peace campaigner Yoko Ono has shown her support for an anti-fracking demonstration set to take place in Liverpool. The artist and widow of John Lennon today tweeted a picture of a poster for the demo, set to take place near the city’s town hall on Wednesday.   [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Well Leaks, Not Fracking, Are Linked to Fouled Water
New York Times
Henry Fountain

A study of tainted drinking water in areas where natural gas is produced from shale shows that the contamination is most likely caused by leaky wells rather than the process of hydraulic fracturing used to release the gas from the rock.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Appeals court hears arguments on New York capacity zone Utilities say a FERC decision is creating artificially high prices
Generation Hub
Barry Cassell

Central Hudson Gas & Electric and Iberdrola USA subsidiaries New York State Electric & Gas and Rochester Gas and Electric provided oral argument Sept. 12 in the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals over the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's decision to assess "unnecessarily high prices" in a new capacity zone in the lower Hudson Valley. Also joining the three utilities in the oral argument were the New York Power Authority and New York State Public Service Commission.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Natural gas production contaminated drinking water in Texas, study finds
Los Angeles Times
NEELA BANERJEE

Natural gas production contaminated the well water of two homes in a Texas subdivision, according to a study published Monday. The discovery came two years after the Environmental Protection Agency halted its investigation in the Parker County community over concern about costs and legal risks. In the new study, scientists were trying to determine the origins of high methane levels in drinking water aquifers near gas wells in Pennsylvania and Texas. They found that water in the two homes had changed over nine months, going from containing trace amounts of methane to containing high levels.  [Full Story]

Sep 15, 2014
Fracking vs. Water
EcoWatch
Paul Brown

The vast quantities of water needed to release oil and gas by fracturing rock formations are not available in large areas with the richest deposits—posing major challenges to the future viability of fracking. According to a report by the World Resources Institute (WRI), 38 percent of the areas where shale gas and oil is most abundant is arid or already under severe water stress—and the 386 million people living in these areas need all the spare water they can get.   [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
People’s Climate March = Marching for the Future
EcoWatch
Bill McKibben

On Sunday, Sept. 21, a huge crowd will march through the middle of Manhattan. It will almost certainly be the largest rally about climate change in human history, and one of the largest political protests in many years in New York. More than 1,000 groups are coordinating the march—environmental justice groups, faith groups, labor groups—which means there’s no one policy ask. Instead, it’s designed to serve as a loud and pointed reminder to our leaders, gathering that week at the United Nations to discuss global warming, that the next great movement of the planet’s citizens centers on our survival and their pathetic inaction.   [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
Opponents dominate WCU fracking hearing
Sylva Herald
Quintin Ellison

Anti-fracking foes punctuated the state’s fourth and final public hearing on hydraulic fracturing regulations with an exclamation point. About 550 people showed up Friday in Cullowhee to wave anti-fracking signs, tender anti-fracking speeches and cheer anti-fracking speakers. This final hearing means the 15-member N.C. Mining and Energy Commission has hit the homestretch after two years of developing regulations for hydraulic fracturing. Members now review their work in light of the comments and send the General Assembly their recommended rules.   [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
Action needed on abandoned wells, group says
Montreal Gazette
Karen Seidman

MONTREAL — Activists are demanding the Quebec government move quickly to set up an action plan to address what they say is an urgent problem with abandoned wells that are leaking methane gas. At a news conference on Sunday, members of the Collectif Moratoire Alternatives Vigilance Intervention invited media to an abandoned well in Ste-Françoise to show methane gas is leaking and stressed hundreds of these wells throughout the province must be made secure.   [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
Scio Township, other communities continue struggle with oil drilling, gas production
Dexter Leader
Ben Baird & Charles Crumm

Although oil wells are operated quietly in the background without major opposition in many locations throughout the state, in others places citizen groups have formed in opposition to this activity. There has been a strong response from the Scio Township community, including members of a grassroots organization called Citizens for Oil-Free Backyards, opposed to oil wells in the area. The township board voted Aug. 20 to impose a six-month moratorium on oil and natural gas operations, giving the township time to review its ordinances.  [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
Fracking And Drilling Increase Texas Traffic Deaths
NBC DFW


The Houston Chronicle reports that deaths rose more than 50 percent in the West Texas counties located on the Permian Basin. Deaths also went up about 11 percent in counties associated with the Eagle Ford and Barnett shales, according to Texas Department of Transportation records. They are wind turbines, standing as far as 60 miles from the mainland, stretching as high as 60-story buildings and costing up to $30 million apiece. On some of these giant machines, a single blade roughly equals the wingspan of the largest airliner in the sky, the Airbus A380. By year’s end, scores of new turbines will be sending low-emission electricity to German cities hundreds of miles to the south.  [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
Fracking or Drinking Water? That May Become the Choice
NBC NEWS
Mark Koba

Fracking for oil and natural gas—or having enough water to drink. That's the possible dilemma facing a number of countries including the United States, according to a new report released by the World Resources Institute last week—though experts disagree on the real implications of the report and what should be done about it. Forty percent of countries with shale-rich deposits—the types where hydraulic fracturing or "fracking" is used to extract natural gas and oil—face water scarcity in and around the shale deposits, according to the WRI report.  [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
1 Surprising State Turning to Fracking to Create Jobs
Motley Fool
Matt Dilallo

When we think of fracking in America, North Carolina is far from the first state that comes to mind. However, after Gov. Pat McCrory signed legislation this year to terminate the state's 2012 moratorium on fracking as well as its decade-old ban on the process, North Carolina is now gearing up to start fracking its first natural gas wells next year. It's a move that could create a whole new sector of employment in the state.   [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
Time Is Running Out for Activists to Halt Fracked Gas Pipeline Into New York City, Connecticut, Rhode Island
Truthout
Ellen Cantarow

Unless an extension is granted, concerned citizens have only until September 29 to comment to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about the Algonquin Pipeline Extension pushing fracked gas through sensitive regions in New York, Connecticut and Rhode Island - creating environmental and nuclear hazards. I am moving to New York City next year, a life change friends are congratulating me about but one that means fracking will be invading my kitchen in the form of the radon that will soon issue from gas jets on Manhattan's stoves. The Marcellus Shale, site of the United State's most frenzied fracking spree, is full of Radium 226 and 228, one of the decay products of which is radon, the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. It used to be that you wouldn't buy a house if radon was discovered in it. Now here I am, moving into New York City, where "natural gas" - if Marcellus Shale development continues its course - will increasingly come from the Marcellus, ferrying carcinogens into New York City. (Radon decays over longer distances, but the travel time to Manhattan isn't long enough for that.) Yes, you can get an electric stove to eliminate the problem, but some buildings (like the one I'm moving to) aren't wired for such conversions, so I'm stuck with a gas stove and the poorer option of venting the radon.  [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
Pricing Pollution, Cutting Carbon
Future Hope
Ted Glick

“We the undersigned call upon the United States Senate, House of Representatives, and President Obama to work together to introduce, promote, and pass legislation that puts a price on carbon pollution and returns revenues to the American people, either directly or by reducing taxes.” From http://act.pricingcarbon.org/petition There are many things which need to be done if we are to break the hold of the oil, gas and coal industries over government so that we can make a rapid transition to a jobs-creating, just and much-less-polluting renewable energy-based economy. We need: -local and state-based campaigns fighting specific dirty energy projects: tar sands, fracking and the pipelines, compressors and export terminals the oil and gas industry needs to keep it going, offshore oil/gas drilling in new areas like the Atlantic coast, drilling for oil in the Arctic and mountaintop removal;   [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
At Least Some Unions Step Up for Big Climate March!
Truthout
Abby Scher

New York City and key national unions like the Service Employees International Union and Communication Workers of America are stepping up to support the People's Climate March in NYC September 21, in a broad coalition. But some green radicals from labor groups say unions need to create their own climate protection strategy that democratizes the energy sector. There is a grinding nature to labor solidarity. Having never been active in a union before, I never experienced it until becoming the National Writers Union rep to organizing meetings for the Sept 21 Climate March happening in New York City right before a UN summit. Now I'm feeling it. It's not enough to get your union on board; has your president signed a statement? It's not enough to get your local; how about your international? And of course, words are cheap, so how many members are you mobilizing, and how are you doing it? Everyone in the room knows that grunt work feeds whatever power labor has. Astonishing for people who haven't been watching the labor movement in the last few years, New York's unions are digging deep to support the march that calls on world leaders to take action to avert catastrophic climate change. The march takes place just two days before President Obama and world leaders gather for an emergency Climate Summit at the United Nations called by UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon. Moon wants to ensure they sign a new international climate treaty when they gather again in Paris in December 2015.  [Full Story]

Sep 14, 2014
In Vermont, a milestone in green-energy efforts
Washington Post
Associated Press

BURLINGTON, Vt. — Vermont’s largest city has a new success to add to its list of socially conscious achievements: 100 percent of its electricity now comes from renewable sources such as wind, water and biomass. With little fanfare, the Burlington Electric Department crossed the threshold this month with the purchase of the 7.4-megawatt Winooski 1 hydroelectric project on the Winooski River at the city’s edge.   [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Fracking fluid spill backs up Greeley traffic for hours
Bakken.com
Tyler Silvy

Traffic was backed up for hours Friday afternoon on U.S. 34 Bypass after a truck spilled fracking fluid near 65th Avenue. “They slammed on their brakes as they were coming up, and the barrel came free of their trailer and started leaking,” Greeley firefighter Doug Gilliland said. Fluid spilled from about a quarter mile east of 65th Avenue all the way into the intersection of U.S. 34 Bypass and 65th Avenue. It was not immediately known how much of the fluid spilled.  [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Earthly Idea: Fracking and natural gas a dangerous addiction
Summit Daily
Howard Brown Opinion

Pro-fracking ads on TV now rival in frequency the ones for expensive pharmaceuticals we’ll never need. My gut reaction is that anyone who needs to advertise that heavily — or can afford to — must be ripping us off royally somehow. So, though fracking and natural gas drilling are not Summit County issues, per se, they are highly important for Colorado and the country. Even if political maneuvering will keep them off the ballot this year, we need to learn as much as we can about them.   [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Fracking fluid spill backs up Greeley traffic for hours
Bakken.com
Lydia Gilbertson

Traffic was backed up for hours Friday afternoon on U.S. 34 Bypass after a truck spilled fracking fluid near 65th Avenue. “They slammed on their brakes as they were coming up, and the barrel came free of their trailer and started leaking,” Greeley firefighter Doug Gilliland said. Fluid spilled from about a quarter mile east of 65th Avenue all the way into the intersection of U.S. 34 Bypass and 65th Avenue. It was not immediately known how much of the fluid spilled.   [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Britain must be convinced on fracking, says energy boss Angela Knight
This is Money
Jon Rees

The energy industry has failed to convince the public that the controversial process of fracking is vital for Britain, the industry’s leader Angela Knight has admitted as she prepares to step down from the high profile job.   [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Let Gov. Rick Snyder know 'fracking' is a problem
Livingston Daily
Opinion

With many people frustrated by gridlock in Washington, we can all agree on one thing —we need to protect our water supply. Hydraulic fracturing, known as "fracking," is a method that is used by the oil and natural gas industry to access the gas and oil below shale.  [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Federal Report: EPA Fracking Oversight Not Enough
Water Online
Sara Jerome

The federal Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently called out the EPA for not doing enough to protect drinking water from risks posed by oil and gas companies. "Congress’ watchdog agency faulted the [EPA] for its oversight of hydraulic fracturing wastewater injected into the ground, saying the agency doesn’t adequately work to mitigate emerging risks to drinking water," The Hill reported.  [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
State House candidates square off in 2nd debate
Vail Daily
Randy Wyrick

EAGLE — Chuck McConnell and Diane Mitsch Bush appear to prove that you can disagree, but you don’t have to be disagreeable about it. And, oh my, how they disagree on almost every issue.   [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Lawyer seeks thousands of clients for case against Chesapeake
Star-Telegram
MAX B. BAKER

Dan McDonald stands in front of the pulpit of the Genesis United Methodist Church in southwest Fort Worth sporting gray slacks, a short-sleeved white shirt and his best Texas drawl. Holding a microphone, he paces within the sanctuary, where usually the pastoral message speaks of love and hope and compassion. Tonight, McDonald growls about an “embezzler” and a “thief.” And while McDonald is not a preacher, the 58-year-old attorney speaks with a missionary zeal for his latest crusade: small landowners who are upset about the dwindling size of their royalty checks and suspect that they are being cheated by Chesapeake Energy.   [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Sun and Wind Alter Global Landscape, Leaving Utilities Behind
New York Times
Justin Gillis

It will be another milestone in Germany’s costly attempt to remake its electricity system, an ambitious project that has already produced striking results: Germans will soon be getting 30 percent of their power from renewable energy sources. Many smaller countries are beating that, but Germany is by far the largest industrial power to reach that level in the modern era. It is more than twice the percentage in the United States.  [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Despite past woes, 'wildcatters' could return to county
Daily News Journal


With the advent of "fracking," some environmental groups predict that "the relatively untapped Chattanooga shale field…will soon see a long awaited incursion of major gas and oil companies." See EcoWatch (June 10, 2013). Today, according to the Tennessee Department of Environment & Conservation, the number of permits issued for drilling is the highest since the 1980s.   [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Hundreds cram last NC fracking hearing in west
WNCN
Associated Press

CULLOWHEE, N.C. - North Carolina officials hear more worries that opening the state to drilling for natural gas will leave water wells polluted by toxic chemicals. Local media report about 600 people attended a lengthy public hearing Friday at Western Carolina University. Most speakers complained regulations on hydraulic fracturing won't protect the public health.  [Full Story]

Sep 13, 2014
Exxon to Shareholders: No Carbon Bubble Risk Here. Carbon Tracker to Exxon: Really?
DeSmogBlog
Ben Jervey

Still own some Exxon Mobil stock and been dithering about divestment? You’re leaving money on the table, and exposing your portfolio to severe risks that the company itself is underestimating. That’s according to a new report published by the Carbon Tracker Initiative, which finds that the stock’s recently sub-par performance can partially be explained by the company’s increasing dependence on tar sands. Carbon Tracker says that Exxon is “significantly underestimating the risks to its business model from investments in higher cost, higher carbon reserves; increasing national and subnational climate regulation; competition from renewables; and demand stagnation.”  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
It’s Time You Get Up to Speed on Hydraulic Fracturing
University of Texas
Sheril Kirshenbaum

More than half of Americans are unfamiliar with the words “hydraulic fracturing” or “fracking,” according to the most recent University of Texas at Austin Energy Poll. Among the 40 percent who recognize these terms, just 42 percent say they support the use of this technology to extract fossil fuels.   [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
McAuliffe: No fracking in George Washington National Forest
The Roanoke Times
Steve Szkotak

?RICHMOND — Citing assurances from federal officials, Gov. Terry McAuliffe said Wednesday fracking for natural gas will not be allowed in the George Washington National Forest. “I won’t allow it as long as I’m governor,” McAuliffe told the inaugural meeting of a climate change panel he created this summer. “We made it clear to everyone we will not allow fracking in our national forest. I’m not going to allow it.” U.S. Forest Service officials, who are considering fracking among other uses in the forest as part of a new management plan for the 1.1 million-acre preserve, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The decision rests with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which oversees the Forest Service. Environmental and conservation groups have rallied against any fracking in the forest, which lies primarily in Virginia but also includes a sliver of West Virginia. They are fearful of polluting the headwaters of a primary water source for the region and the industrial footprint drilling would bring. Outside of the meeting, McAuliffe said he based his assertion on discussions he has had with federal officials he did not identify.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Research Shows Frightening Correlation Between Fracking and Rates of Illness Respiratory and skin issues likely caused by air or groundwater contamination as a result of natural gas drilling, says new study
Global Research
Lauren McCauley

Despite being heralded as a “bridge” to cleaner energy, new reports reveal the grave risks to human health posed by natural gas drilling operations. People who live in close proximity to natural gas drilling sites are significantly more likely to report skin and respiratory problems than those who live further away, according to the largest survey to-date of the reported health effects of people exposed to fracking.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Study assesses the environmental costs and benefits of fracking
Phys.org
Mark Golden

A strange thing happened on the way to dealing with climate change: Advances in hydraulic fracturing put trillions of dollars' worth of previously unreachable oil and natural gas within humanity's grasp.   [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Anti-Fracking Message Fueled the Teachout Challenge
PR Watch
Jessica Mason

An unexpectedly strong primary challenge from the left is forcing New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to reckon with public opposition to fracking. Zephyr Teachout won over 34% of the Democratic primary vote, or 182,000 of the 330,000 votes cast in the New York gubernatorial primary.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
John Hickenlooper's Fracking Panel Snubs the Fractivists
Denver Westword Blogs
Alan Prendergast

Earlier this week, when Governor John Hickenlooper announced the names of the nineteen people selected for a special oil and gas task force intended to address fracking-related land use and health issues across the state, he boasted of the group's "balanced and informed representation." It was as if he was introducing one of those ethnically diverse platoons from old War War II movies: the Italian from the Bronx, the Polish kid from Chicago, the hillbilly from Georgia, the farm boy from Ohio, the Navajo scout, the cigar-chomping noncom from Anytown, USA.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Economist says objectivity crucial for fracking review
The Telegram
Gary Kean

The provincial government has ordered an independent external review of fracking, particularly as it pertains to western Newfoundland, with the hope its results will help settle the debate. Locke said no one knows with certainty whether the direct and spinoff economic potential would trump environmental concerns or vice versa. Locke said people should be open-minded when debating the issues.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
EPA Power Plant Proposal Could Fast-Track Natural Gas Pipeline Projects, S&P Says
Bloomberg
Andrea Vittorio

The Environmental Protection Agency's recently proposed regulations for cutting carbon dioxide emissions from the nation's existing power plants could help fast-track construction of new natural gas pipelines, according to Standard & Poor's Ratings Services. The sharp increase in domestic natural gas production in recent years is already driving more demand for new pipeline infrastructure. The EPA proposal could provide additional motivation—and potentially a new funding option—to build new assets sooner, Nora Pickens, an S&P analyst, said Sept. 11.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
How Obama Became the Oil President
Mother Jones
Michael Klare

Considering all the talk about global warming, peak oil, carbon divestment, and renewable energy, you'd think that oil consumption in the United States would be on a downward path. By now, we should certainly be witnessing real progress toward a post-petroleum economy. As it happens, the opposite is occurring. US oil consumption is on an upward trajectory, climbing by 400,000 barrels per day in 2013 alone—and, if current trends persist, it should rise again both this year and next. In other words, oil is back. Big time. Signs of its resurgence abound. Despite what you may think, Americans, on average, are driving more miles every day, not fewer, filling ever more fuel tanks with ever more gasoline, and evidently feeling ever less bad about it. The stigma of buying new gas-guzzling SUVs, for instance, seems to have vanished; according to CNN Money, nearly one out of three vehicles sold today is an SUV. As a result of all this, America's demand for oil grew more than China's in 2013, the first time that's happened since 1999.   [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Teachout Says She Hasn’t Ruled Out Endorsing Cuomo In General Election
CBS New York


Law professorZephyr Teachout said Friday that she is considering her next steps after a surprisingly strong primary challenge to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, but wouldn’t rule out endorsing him in the November election. Teachout, a Fordham University law professor, told The Associated Press that she hasn’t made a decision on whether she’ll make an endorsement. She said Cuomo would need to express opposition to hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, or “fracking,” before he could earn her support.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
How much more evidence do we need that fracking is harmful?
Stuart Smith Blog
Stuart H. Smith

They held a Democratic primary election in New York State this Tuesday, and an upstart candidate for governor with the unlikely name of Zephyr Teachout — who was outspent about 50-to-1 by the incumbent Andrew Cuomo — did surprisingly well given the obstacles. She got about 34 percent of the vote overall, but she actually defeated the powerful, well-known Cuomo in about 20 counties in the central part of the state. The biggest reason for that? Her forceful, passionate opposition to allowing fracking in upstate New York. The people are smart. Most citizens have come to understand that while the gains of the natural-gas drilling boom are fairly ephemeral — some jobs that often go to folks mostly from out-of-state anyway, a few years of royalties for some landowners, maybe a bit lower heating bills — the environmental scars are deep and long-lasting. Many citizens have figured out that no royalty check is worth more than your family’s good health.   [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Study: Fracking workers exposed to dangerous amounts of benzene
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
NEELA BANERJEE

Some workers at oil and gas sites where fracking occurs are routinely exposed to high levels of benzene, a colorless gas that can cause cancer, according to a study by the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety. The agency, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommends that people limit their benzene exposure to an average of 0.1 of a part per million during their shift. But when NIOSH researchers measured the amount of airborne benzene that oil and gas workers were exposed to when they opened hatches atop tanks at well sites, 15 out of 17 samples were more than that amount.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
GOP candidate a natural gas advocate
China Daily
Amy He

Former Wall Street employee says environment and renewable energy motivate him to get into politics Doug Lee is a Republican candidate for the New York State Assembly District 16 in Nassau County and he will try to unseat Democratic incumbent Michelle Schimel in November on a platform that backs natural gas drilling and questions the viability of renewable energy development in the Empire State.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
DEP approves controversial Middlesex gas drilling permit
Trib Live
Bill Vidonic

The state Department of Environmental Protection on Friday granted approval for Rex Energy to conduct Marcellus shale drilling for natural gas on a controversial site in Middlesex less than a mile from Mars Area School District property. “We have to get together with other groups and discuss our strategy from here,” said Amy Nassif, a member of the Mars Parents Group that has been fighting against the drilling site, on property off Denny Road owned by Bob and Kim Geyer, who live in Adams. “We have to protect our children because the DEP is not interested in protecting our local community.”   [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Stanford-led study assesses the environmental costs and benefits of fracking
Stanford News
MARK GOLDEN

A strange thing happened on the way to dealing with climate change: Advances in hydraulic fracturing put trillions of dollars' worth of previously unreachable oil and natural gas within humanity's grasp. The environmental costs – and benefits – from "fracking," which requires blasting huge amounts of water, sand and chemicals deep into underground rock formations, are the subject of new research that synthesizes 165 academic studies and government databases. The survey covers not only greenhouse gas impacts but also fracking's influence on local air pollution, earthquakes and, especially, supplies of clean water.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Illinois Green Groups Push to Stop Fracking With All Eyes on JCAR
Huffington Post
Will Reynolds

The second draft of Illinois' controversial fracking regulation has been presented to JCAR, the state legislature's Joint Committee for Administrative Rules. The powerful group of twelve legislators will give final approval, or rejection, of the updated rules. If JCAR takes no vote then the rules won't be finalized and fracking will be further delayed. It might be nice to see the legislature do nothing, for once, They can also prohibit the rules as a "threat to the public interest, safety or welfare." What all environmental leaders agree on is that letting fracking come to Illinois is a major threat to public health and safety.   [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Environmental Groups Sue Government Over Use Of Dangerous Rail Cars For Shipping Oil
ThinkProgress
KATIE VALENTINE

Three environmental groups are suing the U.S. Department of Transportation for continuing to allow crude oil shipments in older, more puncture-prone rail cars. The Sierra Club, Earthjustice and ForestEthics filed a lawsuit against the DOT Thursday after the department didn’t respond to a to a legal petition on the rail cars that the groups filed in July. The petition called on the DOT to ban shipments of crude oil in DOT-111 tank cars, which the groups say were “put into service decades ago” and lack “safeguards added to improve crashworthiness.”  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
How The New York Times Overhyped The Benefits Of Fracking
Huffington Post
Mark Gongloff

If America's fracking boom is creating a job boom, it's hard to tell. Maybe you've heard of the miraculous job-creating powers of fracking. President Barack Obama has claimed fracking could create 600,000 jobs. The Chamber of Commerce has declared that fracking creates "millions of jobs." This week, The New York Times gave fracking credit for "a transformation spreading across the heartland of the nation," one "changing the economic calculus for old industries and downtrodden cities alike."  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Fracking or drinking water? That may become the choice
CNBC
Mark Koba

Fracking for oil and natural gas—or having enough water to drink. That's the possible dilemma facing a number of countries including the United States, according to a new report released by the World Resources Institute last week—though experts disagree on the real implications of the report and what should be done about it.  [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Illinois Green Groups Push to Stop Fracking With All Eyes on JCAR
Huffington Post
Wll Reynolds

The second draft of Illinois' controversial fracking regulation has been presented to JCAR, the state legislature's Joint Committee for Administrative Rules. The powerful group of twelve legislators will give final approval, or rejection, of the updated rules. If JCAR takes no vote then the rules won't be finalized and fracking will be further delayed. It might be nice to see the legislature do nothing, for once, They can also prohibit the rules as a "threat to the public interest, safety or welfare." What all environmental leaders agree on is that letting fracking come to Illinois is a major threat to public health and safety.   [Full Story]

Sep 12, 2014
Longmont, Colorado, other groups appeal judge’s order that tossed fracking ban
Dallas business Journal
Cathy Proctor

The city of Longmont, Colorado, and environmental groups have appealed a Boulder district judge’s ruling overturning the city’s voter-approved ban on fracking, moving the issue to the Colorado Court of Appeals.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
New Report: Offshore Fracking Threatens California's Ocean, Air, Seismic Safety 10 Widely Used Fracking Chemicals Endanger Marine Life, Analysis Finds
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

SAN FRANCISCO— As the California Coastal Commission meets in Smith River this week, scientists with the Center for Biological Diversity today released a new report outlining the serious dangers posed by toxic chemicals, air pollution and increased earthquake risk linked to offshore fracking near Santa Barbara and Los Angeles.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Anti-pipeline groups form coalition
Daily Progress
Brian Carlton

Opposition continues to grow in the Shenandoah Valley, against the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline project. This week, 22 different groups from across the area announced plans to form a larger coalition, called the Alleghany-Blue Ridge Alliance. “It’s a way to use everyone’s time wisely,” said former Augusta County supervisor Nancy Sorrells, who serves as co-chairman of the Augusta County Alliance. “I think we’re all coming at the pipeline from different angles. You’ve got Highland County, you’ve got Nelson, you’ve got people from Augusta, all doing research and in some ways, we were duplicating efforts. Now we can share strategic resources.”  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking hasn’t restored the Rust Belt’s lost jobs
Wshington Post
Jim Tankersley

The Times is correct that fracking has boosted economies in Ohio and other oil-and-gas-rich states and helped drive increased industrial production in America. In some areas, such as Youngstown, capital investment has rained down from the energy industry and companies that support it. It’s also true, as Schwartz writes, that “the new factories that have gone up … employ only a fraction of the workers who once labored at Youngstown’s mills.”  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking in Scotland Is One Solution to Higher Gas Costs
Bloomberg
Isis Almeida

The world’s fourth-biggest petrochemical manufacturer bought a license last month to look for fuel around its refinery in Grangemouth, Scotland. That complements a deal by Ineos to import gas from the U.S., a step followed by other chemical companies in Europe such as Borealis AG and Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC) Scotland will next week vote on whether to stay in the U.K.   [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Locally, Teachout outpolled Cuomo
Record online
James Nani

KINGSTON — While Gov. Andrew Cuomo won the Democratic primary Tuesday night, Democrats in our region strongly supported defeated challenger Zephyr Teachout. Jen Fuentes, a Working Families Party member from Kingston, attributed the strong support for Teachout by Democrats in Ulster County to frustration over Cuomo's inaction on issues like hydrofracturing as well as Teachout's strong campaign.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
How The New York Times Overhyped The Benefits Of Fracking
Huffington Post
Mark Gongloff

If America's fracking boom is creating a job boom, it's hard to tell. Maybe you've heard of the miraculous job-creating powers of fracking. President Barack Obama has claimed fracking could create 600,000 jobs. The Chamber of Commerce has declared that fracking creates "millions of jobs." This week, The New York Times gave fracking credit for "a transformation spreading across the heartland of the nation," one "changing the economic calculus for old industries and downtrodden cities alike."  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Warren County firm agrees to stop discharging Marcellus Shale wastewater
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Don Hopey

A Warren County waste treatment firm has agreed to build a state-of-the-art treatment facility to settle a federal lawsuit alleging it had illegally and repeatedly discharged Marcellus Shale gas drilling wastewater containing high concentrations of salts, heavy metals and radioactive compounds into the Allegheny River.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking Literally Makes People Sick, New Study Finds
EcoNews
Anastasia Pantsios

A new study provided more ammunition for what public health experts and environmental activists have been saying since fracking became widespread in the last half decade: chemicals used in the natural gas drilling process can be hazardous to health.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking rules needed
Chicago Tribune
Opinion

Draft rules recently released by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources are designed to protect the state from horizontal hydraulic fracturing. The rules are tough for very good reasons. Less stringent regulation would mean denying or ignoring the potential social cost of so-called fracking to produce oil and gas.   [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking is adverse to American values
The Stokes News
Opinion

No one would deny that clean water, air, and soil are important to existence and survival. The manufactured quest for affordable and adequate energy in North Carolina has presented Stokes County with a challenge. We are in the Dan River Danville Basin that is being considered for hydraulic fracturing. Not as difficult as it seems, it all comes down to responsibility. The first responsibility lies in the present. Stokes County has rivers and streams that are beautiful and provide us with unique economic advantages. Tourism is alive and well in this county. Subjecting natural beauty to huge water withdrawals, increased truck traffic, and fracking towers is irresponsible.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Cuomo’s no-decision approach to energy and the environment
Capital
Scott Waldman

ALBANY—Andrew Cuomo has routinely stalled politically difficult decisions relating to energy and the environment, producing a political bottleneck that has frustrated both industry boosters and environmental activists. The best-known example of Cuomo's application of the stall tactic concerns whether to permit or ban fracking, which the governor has avoided making a decision on by citing an ongoing impact study by the state health department.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
You Tube Video: Dear Gov Cuomo
You Tube
Jesse Edward Hamilton

Jesse Edward Hamilton IV is 11 years old, and has a couple questions for New York's Gov. Cuomo about fracking. Help Jesse get the governor's attention by liking, sharing, and commenting with your questions for the governor! Published as a You Tube on Sept 4, 2014  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking's Financial Losers: Local Governments
GOVERNING
FRANK SHAFROTH

The shale gas market is an economic boon for the 30-odd states that permit fracking. The severance tax states impose on the process adds up. In 2010, it generated more than $11 billion. The flow of that revenue goes straight into state and federal piggy banks, as does increased corporate income tax revenue from energy companies profiting from fracking. Localities, however, enjoy no such benefits. Instead, they get stuck with all the fracking problems: noise from blasting, storage of toxic chemicals, degraded water sources and heavy truck traffic, as well as the rising costs of cleaning up the detritus fracking leaves behind. North Dakota counties affected by hydraulic fracturing have reported to the state Department of Mineral Resources’ Oil and Gas Division that traffic, air pollution, jobsite and highway accidents, sexual assaults, bar fights, prostitution and drunk driving have all increased.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Yeb Saño from the Arctic: Burning Fossil Fuels Chief Cause of Climate Change
EcoWatch
Anastasia Pantsios

Saño is representing the Philippines at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Last November, during typhoon Haiyan which devastated the Philippines, Saño delivered a powerful speech at the UN’s Warsaw climate meeting which attracted widespread attention. “What I am seeing here in the Arctic is something that is in danger of being lost forever,” said Yeb Saño. “It is quite clear that burning fossil fuels is the chief cause of climate change, and the Arctic is at the very center of this man-made crisis. If the world wishes to avert the most catastrophic impacts of climate change, we must rapidly transition to a clean energy future and abandon crazy projects like oil drilling in the Arctic,” said Yeb Saño.   [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
How Green Infrastructure Minimizes the Impacts of Climate Change
EcoWatch


With support from The Earth Institute, writers Caswell Holloway, Carter Strickland, Michael Gerrard and Daniel Firger recently published “Solving the CSO Conundrum: Green Infrastructure and the Unfulfilled Promise of Federal-Municipal Cooperation” in Harvard Environmental Law Review. Collectively, the authors represent expertise in climate change, urban sustainability planning, environmental protection, and environmental policy and law. In this article, the authors propose regulatory and policy reform to develop comprehensive, locally led infrastructure and sustainability initiatives that improve public health and the environment.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Blue and red states going green on energy policy
USA Today
Wendy Koch

Politically "red" and "blue" states are increasingly turning green as they push energy efficiency and renewable power to save money and protect the planet, says a report today with prominent bi-partisan support. In the last two years alone, GOP-dominant red states have adopted policies that could serve as models for others seeking to meet proposed federal targets for reducing heat-trapping carbon dioxide emissions, according to the "State Clean Energy Cookbook" by Stanford University and the Hoover Institution.  [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking workers exposed to dangerous amounts of benzene, study says
Los AngelesTimes


Some workers at oil and gas sites where fracking occurs are routinely exposed to high levels of benzene, a colorless gas that can cause cancer, according to a study by the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety. The agency, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommends that people limit their benzene exposure to an average of 0.1 of a part per million during their shift. But when NIOSH researchers measured the amount of airborne benzene that oil and gas workers were exposed to when they opened hatches atop tanks at well sites, 15 out of 17 samples were over that amount.   [Full Story]

Sep 11, 2014
Fracking company: We turned your drinking water into fire so we will be suing you for saying so
Daily Kos


Steve Lipsky has a problem. His potable water is flammable. On-fire flammable. In 2009, Range drilled and fracked two gas wells approximately 2,000 feet from Lipsky’s home. Later that year, Lipsky says he started noticing that the water from his well was slimy and fizzy. The next year he began trucking in his family’s water for about $1,000 a month. The methane levels in his well have risen to concentrations nearly three times higher than what’s considered explosive, according to recent test Lipsky helped pay for. He created a video about it, which you can see below.  [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
Cuomo hurt in primary by lack of fracking position
Plitics on the Hudson


Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s resistance to taking a position on hydraulic fracturing for natural gas appears to have boosted his opponent in the primary election Tuesday.  [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
Natural gas exports set to take off as Energy Department approves two new projects
Fortune
Michael Casey

Liquified natural gas export terminals will be in Louisiana and Florida. U.S. regulators have approved construction of two plants for exporting natural gas, potentially to lucrative markets in Europe, Japan, Taiwan and other parts of Asia.   [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
A call to action against fracking
Great Lakes Advocate


The Manning Clean Water Action Group and the Lock the Gate Alliance are urging residents to attend a meeting next Tuesday to discuss the situation at Gloucester and the flow on effects for other regions such as the Great Lakes. The groups say there is grave concern that drinking water in the Great Lakes and Manning Valley will be contaminated with heavy metal and chemicals as a result of AGL’S plans to frack in the Manning River Catchment in the next couple of months.   [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
Fracking subject of Oklahoma legislative interim study
The Oklahoman
Rick Green

Concerns over water pollution in and around the Salt Fork River in north-central Oklahoma took center stage Tuesday in an interim legislative study about the oil and gas industry practice of hydraulic fracturing. Fish kills have been reported on the river in Kay County, and some residents say their water has become polluted, said Rep. Steve Vaughan, R-Ponca City, who led the study.  [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
Fracking opponents prepare for battle
Smoky Mountain News
Holly Kays

It was back to school for a group of staunch fracking opponents on Friday, Sept. 5. The corner conference room in the Jackson County Public Library was a bit small for the 20 people crammed in to it, but they were ready to learn. “It’s all coming down now to the Mining and Energy Commission hearing, and I wanted to be here to make sure that I had all the knowledge that I needed,” said Donna Dupree, leader of the Jackson County Coalition Against Fracking.   [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
Scio Township, other communities continue struggle with oil drilling, gas production
Heritage.com
Ben Baird & Charles Crumm

There has been a strong response from the Scio Township community, including members of a grassroots organization called Citizens for Oil-Free Backyards, opposed to oil wells in the area. The township board voted Aug. 20 to impose a six-month moratorium on oil and natural gas operations, giving the township time to review its ordinances.  [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
How Hillary Clinton's State Department sold fracking to the world A trove of secret documents details the US government’s global push for shale gas, reports Mother Jones
The Guardian
Mariah Blake

Clinton urged Bulgarian officials to give fracking another chance. According to Borissov, she agreed to help fly in the “best specialists on these new technologies to present the benefits to the Bulgarian people.” But resistance only grew. The following month in neighbouring Romania, thousands of people gathered to protest another Chevron fracking project, and Romania’s parliament began weighing its own shale gas moratorium. Again Clinton intervened, dispatching her special envoy for energy in Eurasia, Richard Morningstar, to push back against the fracking bans.   [Full Story]

Sep 10, 2014
Groups appeal ruling to scrap Longmont fracking ban
Coloradoan


A coalition of environmental groups filed an appeal in Boulder County District Court Wednesday, asking that Longmont's ban on hydraulic fracturing be upheld after a judge declared it contrary to state interest in July.  [