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Jun 23, 2016
'It just ruined everything — the whole life' Feeling abandoned by state regulators, hundreds of rural Pennsylvanians endure contaminated well water they blame on fracking
Center for Public Integrity
Maryam Jameel

That maxim has been tested by a low-grade but persistent threat far different than the kind Eakin encountered in Korea: well water that’s too dangerous to drink. It gives off a strange odor and bears a yellow tint. It carries sand that clogs faucets in the home Eakin shares with his wife, Shirley, here in southwestern Pennsylvania.   [Full Story]

Jun 23, 2016
German government agrees fracking ban as environmental groups vow to fight on As part of the compromise agreement, the ban will be revisited by parliament in 2021
Independent
Holger Hansen

Germany's coalition government has agreed to ban fracking for shale gas after years of fractious talks over the issue--but environmental groups claim the ban does not go far enought and have vowed to fight the deal.  [Full Story]

Jun 23, 2016
Environmental group fights oil explorer’s Cook Inlet fracking plans
Alaska Dispatch News
Alex DeMarban

A prominent environmental group is asking the federal government to stop an independent oil explorer from fracking wells in Cook Inlet, saying it "poses a grave and imminent threat to critically endangered" Cook Inlet beluga whales.   [Full Story]

Jun 23, 2016
Fracking, Earthquakes and Visual Storytelling Animated and interactive graphics describe the connection between oil and gas production and human-caused earthquakes
Scientific American


The idea that human activities can cause earthquakes, or so-called induced seismicity, has been around for some time, but demonstrating its role and pinpointing exactly how it happens can be difficult. The July issue of Scientific American features a story by Anna Kuchment on how wastewater injection from oil and gas operations has been triggering earthquakes in the central United States over the past several years.   [Full Story]

Jun 23, 2016
The Fracking Circus in the UK--And The Activist Caught in the Crossfire
Food and Water Watch
Wenonah Hauter

Just like the U.S. and elsewhere in Europe, activists in the UK are in the midst of a fight to protect their communities and our climate—and are facing powerful and in some cases, undemocratic forces. As I tour the U.S. discussing my book Frackopoly, which looks at this growing global movement, I want to take a moment to acknowledge an activist, Tina Rothery, who faces jail time for her peaceful activism against fracking in Lancashire.  [Full Story]

Jun 23, 2016
Federal judge blocks enforcement of fracking regulations
Jurist


[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the District of Wyoming [official website] ruled [order, PDF] Tuesday that the Department of the Interior and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) "lacked Congressional authority to promulgate" regulations concerning fracking on federal and Indian lands. The court came to this conclusion by applying the test, as formulated in Chevron USA Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc. [opinion], which asks whether Congress has "directly spoken to the precise question at issue." Upon a negative answer "a reviewing court must respect the agency's construction of the statute so long as it is permissible." In this case, the court found that the BLM's attempt to regulate fracking was "in excess of its statutory authority and contrary to law." It is expected that the government will appeal the ruling.   [Full Story]

Jun 23, 2016
Feds Ban Treatment Of Fracking Waste At Public Treatment Plants
Water Online
Sara Jerome

Public sewage plants will not treat waste from fracking operations under a new ban imposed by the federal government. The practice was already curtailed by voluntary codes in the oil and gas industry, but the new regulatory ban by the U.S. EPA makes those standards enforceable.   [Full Story]

Jun 23, 2016
Obama Fracking Rule Struck Down by Federal Judge
EcoWatch


A federal judge struck down an Interior Department rule on fracking on public lands, ruling that the agency lacked authority to issue the regulations. The rule would impose tougher restrictions on gas extraction operations on public lands.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Bill McKibben: The AG’s noble fight vs. Exxon
NY Daily News
Bill McKibben--Opinion

Let’s mash up the world’s great cliches: If all the world’s a stage, then our crowded global theater is on fire. It sets new temperature records with each passing month; record droughts, floods and blazes wreck lives on an hourly basis. And so the question is: If you’re a manager of that global theater, is it OK to walk up and down the aisles telling the patrons not to worry, to stay in their seats, to keep watching the movie? Can you shout “special effects” in a crowded inferno?   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Obama signs pipeline safety bill
the Hill
Timothy Cama

President Obama signed a bill Wednesday to renew the federal government’s pipeline safety program, giving regulators new emergency authorities. The Protecting our Infrastructure of Pipelines and Enhancing Safety Act of 2016, or PIPES Act, reauthorizes the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration’s (PHMSA) oil and gas pipeline programs through 2019, with a few new mandates for the agency.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Exxon Loses Bid to Fight Virgin Islands Climate Subpoena in State Court
Inside Climate News
David Hasemyer

Judge's motion sets the stage for the company's legal challenge to proceed in federal court. A court ruling in Texas has set the stage for ExxonMobil's legal challenge to a climate change investigation by the U. S. Virgin Islands to proceed in federal court.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
White House Fracking Regulations Blocked by Wyoming Judge The judge's ruling provides a "comfortable precedent" as the proposed regulations would have been costly for the oil industry.
The Street
Michael Sheetz

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- A Wyoming federal judge blocked a White House ruling for higher regulations for fracking on public land. David Deckelbaum, oil and gas equity research director at KeyBanc Capital Markets, believes that today's ruling was expected by the oil industry.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
BLM’s fracking rule struck down; McCarthy’s science: unsound or secret?
Bloomberg Government
Mark Drajem

President Obama’s environmental legacy is now largely a matter for the courts to decide. And after yesterday’s court ruling striking down Interior’s fracking rules, it is looking especially precarious. Judge Scott W. Skavdahl, a U.S. District Judge in Wyoming, ruled that the department had no congressional authority to issue those rules. Skavadahl wrote that Congress had “directly spoken to the issue and precluded federal agency authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing not involving the use of diesel fuels.”   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Germany bans fracking until at least 2021
Petro Global News


On Tuesday the German coalition government agreed to ban fracking for shale gas indefinitely. According to Thomas Oppermann, head of the Social Democrats parliamentary group, the German parliament must reassess the legislation in 2021 to determine if the decision if still valid.  [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
White House Plans to Contest Federal Ruling of Fracking on Public Lands
Washington Free Beacon
Alyssa Canobbio

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Wednesday that the Obama administration has plans to contest the federal ruling that made permanent a block on a rule setting stricter standards for hydraulic fracking on public lands. “We obviously believe that we’ve got a strong argument to make about the important role the federal government can play in that ensuring hydraulic fracturing done on public lands doesn’t threaten the drinking water of people who live in the area,” Earnest said. “It’s a pretty simple proposition and it is indicative of the common sense approach the Obama administration has pursued.”   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Economic report calls Monterey County anti-fracking measure "negative"
News 5 KION
Matt Sizemore

MONTEREY COUNTY, Calif. - An economic report released by a group supporting the oil industry in Monterey County has both sides of the argument up in arms.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Federal judge strikes down Obama’s effort to regulate fracking
FuelFix
James Osborne

A Wyoming federal judge has struck down the Obama administration’s attempt to regulate how oil and natural gas drillers conduct hydraulic fracturing on federal lands.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Proposed rules to govern fracking in Maryland draw criticism from environmentalists and energy industry
Baltimore Sun
Scott Dance

The Hogan administration is proposing rules that would limit the hurdles that energy companies must overcome before they could start the gas-drilling process known as fracking, while also requiring more protections against groundwater contamination.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Judge blocks rules to restrict fracking Decision is latest setback for Obama
Durango Herald
Brady Dennis

federal judge late Tuesday dealt a blow to the Obama administration’s key effort to limit hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on public lands, saying that regulators lack authority to set new restrictions on the practice.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Maryland to hold series of public meetings on future of fracking
Baltimore Sun
Scott Dance

Maryland environmental officials are holding a series of public meetings starting Wednesday to discuss the future here of the gas-drilling process known as fracking.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
People Near Wyoming Fracking Town Show Elevated Levels of Toxic Chemicals
Inside Climate News
Zahra Hirjii

Researchers tested air pollution in Pavillion, Wyo., along with local residents, suggesting a link between the toxic chemicals released and biological impacts. A new study brings researchers and environmental advocates closer than ever to tracing whether toxic chemicals spewing out of natural gas production sites are making their way into the bodies of people who live and work nearby.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Fracking, the Failure of Mainstream Greens and the Corporate Control of U.S. Energy Policy
Counter Punch
Mark Hand

The name of her new book is Frackopoly, but author Wenonah Hauter tackles issues beyond hydraulic fracturing, more commonly known as fracking. She writes about energy spats past and present, explaining why she believes the energy industry won most of these fights and succeeded in monopolizing U.S. energy policy-making over the past 100 years. But momentum, she notes, has shifted slightly toward the people over the past half-dozen years.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
White House says to defend fracking rules in the courts
Thomson Reuters Foundation
Reuters

WASHINGTON, June 22 (Reuters) - The White House said on Wednesday it would continue to defend in the courts its legal authority to set rules governing hydraulic fracturing on public lands.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Maryland releases suggested revisions to gas drilling plan
Washington Times
Brian White

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland will consider revising its proposed regulations for the natural gas drilling known as hydraulic fracturing in an effort to add safeguards for public health and the environment, a state agency announced Wednesday.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Maryland Releases Proposed Revisions to Gas Drilling Plan
CBS Baltimore


ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The state of Maryland has released some proposed revisions to regulations for hydraulic fracturing for natural gas. The Maryland Department of the Environment released them Wednesday, after an 18-month review of proposed regulations.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Utica shale yields higher output with fewer wells for drillers
TribLive
David Conti

One deep Utica shale well has the potential to produce as much natural gas as three wells drilled into the Marcellus layer above it.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
White House Plans to Contest Federal Ruling of Fracking on Public Lands
The Washington Free Beacon
Alyssa Canobbio

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Wednesday that the Obama administration has plans to contest the federal ruling that made permanent a block on a rule setting stricter standards for hydraulic fracking on public lands. “We obviously believe that we’ve got a strong argument to make about the important role the federal government can play in that ensuring hydraulic fracturing done on public lands doesn’t threaten the drinking water of people who live in the area,” Earnest said. “It’s a pretty simple proposition and it is indicative of the common sense approach the Obama administration has pursued.”  [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Say What? Judge Says Feds Lack Authority to Regulate Fracking on Public Lands
Common Dreams
Deirdre Fulton

In a blow to environmentalists calling on the Obama administration to keep fossil fuels in the ground, a judge on Tuesday struck down as unlawful the new rule meant to regulate fracking on federal lands. The decision from Judge Scott Skavdahl of the District Court of Wyoming "is a major loss for the administration, which worked for years to update its oil and natural gas drilling regulations to account for dramatic increases and innovations in fracking," The Hill reports.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Obama Fracking Rules Are Struck Down by Court
The New York Times
CORAL DAVENPORTR

WASHINGTON — A federal judge on Tuesday night struck down an Obama administration regulation on the use of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for oil and gas on public lands, a blow to President Obama’s muscular stand on the extraction of fossil fuels on government lands. The rule, released by the Interior Department in March of last year and scheduled to take effect this Friday, was designed to increase the safety of fracking. It would have required companies to comply with federal safety standards in the construction of fracking wells, and to disclose the use of some chemicals in the fracking process.  [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
PSC documents explain state reliance on natural gas
Politico
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — Even as it sets ambitious goals for renewable energy, Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration still views natural gas as an essential part of the state’s energy mix, according to recent filings with the Public Service Commission. In the last 18 months, the governor has banned fracking and shut down the Constitution pipeline, citing environmental effects and the dangers of natural gas. At the same time, Cuomo has laid out one of the nation’s most aggressive climate policies, with a focus on doubling the amount of renewable energy powering the grid by 2030.   [Full Story]

Jun 22, 2016
Federal Judge Strikes Down Obama Administration's Fracking Rules
NPR
Camila Domonoske

A federal judge in Wyoming has struck down the Obama administration's regulations on hydraulic fracturing, ruling that the U.S. Bureau of Land Management doesn't have the authority to establish rules over fracking on federal and Indian lands. In the ruling on Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl said Congress had not granted the BLM that power, and had instead chosen to specifically exclude fracking from federal oversight.   [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
Obama-appointed judge strikes down federal fracking rule
The Hill
Timothy Cama

A federal judge appointed by President Obama struck down the administration’s regulation on hydraulic fracturing on federal lands on Tuesday, ruling that the Interior Department does not have congressional authority to regulate fracking. The decision is a major loss for the administration, which worked for years to update its oil and natural gas drilling regulations to account for dramatic increases and innovations in fracking.  [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
One Way to Solve Fracking’s Water Problem: Don’t Use Water
Bloomberg
Eric Roston

An Australian researcher and two scientists from France, which has banned fracking, now suggest there may be a better way. And it's a twofer, at least. Their germ of an idea, published today in the journal Nature Communications, would simultaneously reduce or eliminate drilling's water footprint, make wells more productive, and trap carbon dioxide underground. How? Substitute high-pressure CO2 for water.  [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
Pending fracking rules to tighten for N. Neck
The Journal News


While fracking is taking place in other areas of Virginia, the state’s pending regulations would tighten the rules for this area, called the “Tidewater.” Tidewater includes King George under its definition in state law.   [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
Scientist: Fossil fuels’ two-way assault on children’s health needs to stop
Environmental Health News
Brian Bienkowski

In a commentary released today summarizing the key science around fossil fuels and children’s health, Frederica Perera, a professor and researcher at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health, argues the science clearly shows that both toxic air emission and climate change as a result of fossil fuel emissions pose grave dangers to children.  [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
Methane Emissions From Onshore Oil and Gas Equivalent to 14 Coal Plants Powered for One Year
EcoWatch
Andy Rowell

When we talk about climate change all too often we focus on carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas. But there is a much more potent greenhouse gas, methane, which is much more efficient at trapping radiation than CO2. Some estimates put it at 87 percent more potent over a 20 year lifetime than carbon dioxide.   [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
Belmont, Monroe counties are Ohio's natural gas hot spots
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

Natural gas production in Ohio’s Utica Shale remains centered in Belmont and Monroe counties. Belmont County is No. 1 with 99.2 billion cubic feet, according to Ohio Department of Natural Resources records for the first quarter 2016. Monroe is No. 2 with 63.3 billion cubic feet of natural gas.   [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
Fracking-earthquake connection makes insuring Southcentral US tough
Insurance Business
Caitlin Bronson

Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner John Doak made headlines in early June, calling the earthquake insurance market in the state “uncompetitive” as carriers continue to raise rates and limit coverage in response to increased seismic activity.  [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
LAW: BLM says fracking rule freeze 'ignores a century of precedent'
E & E Publishing
Ellen M. Gilmer

The Obama administration's new rules for hydraulic fracturing on public and tribal lands are not only legal -- they're overdue, government lawyers told a federal court yesterday. In a brief to the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, lawyers for the Bureau of Land Management pushed to reverse a lower court's decision to freeze the fracking rule while it's being debated in that court.   [Full Story]

Jun 21, 2016
German Government Agrees To Ban Gas Fracking Indefinitely
E & P Magazine
Reuters

Germany's coalition government agreed to ban fracking for shale gas indefinitely on June 21 after years of fractious talks over the issue, but environmental groups said the ban did not go far enough and vowed to fight the deal. Test drilling will be allowed but only with the permission of the respective state government, officials said.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Exxon, ConocoPhillips Top List of Methane Polluters
Fortune
Katie Fehrenbacher

This is how much methane pollution that eleven oil and gas companies emit annually. Eleven oil and gas giants in the U.S. leak so much of a potent green house gas into the atmosphere every year that the emissions would be the equivalent of running seven coal-fired power plants for a year.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Without Emissions Cuts, Summer Heat Will Get Even Deadlier
Inside Climate News
Bob Berwyn

New study shows dangerously hot summers will become the norm across much of the globe unless greenhouse gas emissions are significantly reduced.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
EPA: GOP panel to question McCarthy on scientific basis for rules
E & E Publishing
Amanda Reilly

In what's likely to be a contentious matchup, U.S. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy this week will face congressional critics over her agency's use of science. The hearing Wednesday in the House Science, Space and Technology Committee could cover a broad range of topics, as GOP critics on the committee have expressed concerns about the scientific underpinning of a number of agency rules.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Trudeau moves to strengthen environmental reviews of pipelines
Calgary Herald
JOSH WINGROVE

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will overhaul the country’s pipeline regulator as part of an effort to rewrite and strengthen environmental laws. The federal review of environmental assessment rules unveiled Monday will include a strategy for how to “modernize” the National Energy Board regulatory agency in a bid to restore confidence. Trudeau campaigned in last year’s election on toughening environmental laws, cutting emissions and expanding consultation with the country’s indigenous communities. “We will strengthen Canadians’ trust in the regulatory process,” Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr said in Ottawa, adding the review would “restore credibility” to the system.  [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Vancouver takes legal action to block Kinder Morgan pipeline plan
The Globe and Mail
LAURA KANE

The City of Vancouver is the latest group to launch a court challenge aimed at quashing the National Energy Board’s recommended approval of the $6.8-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. The city said in its court application that the energy board’s recommendation to approve the expansion of the oil pipeline, subject to 157 conditions, is invalid and unlawful. The board excluded oral cross-examination, provided inadequate information sharing and failed to properly consult communities along the pipeline and tanker route, the city contends.  [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Exclusive: Shell puts revamped shale arm at heart of future growth
Reuters
Ron Bousso

Having turned round its North American shale business, Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) is putting so-called unconventional energy at the heart of its long-term growth plans, and believes lessons from the revamp can be applied across the company. Greg Guidry, head of the Anglo-Dutch group's unconventionals business, told Reuters a drive to slash costs and streamline decision-making had put his division largely on a par with leading rivals in terms of productivity and efficiency. And now the rest of Shell could reap the benefits too.  [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Hot Mess: States Struggle to Deal with Radioactive Fracking Waste Potentially dangerous drilling byproducts are being dumped in landfills throughout the Marcellus Shale with few controls
Common Dreams
Jie Jenny Zou

The Marcellus Shale has transformed the Appalachian Basin into an energy juggernaut. Even amid a recent drilling slowdown, regional daily production averages enough natural gas to power more than 200,000 U.S. homes for a year. But the rise of hydraulic fracturing over the past decade has created another boom: tons of radioactive materials experts call an “orphan” waste stream. No federal agency fully regulates oil and gas drilling byproducts — which include brine, sludge, rock and soiled equipment — leaving tracking and handling to states that may be reluctant to alienate energy interests.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Louisiana Supreme Court Smacks Down Fracking Ban Photo of Andrew Follett
Daily Caller
Andrew Follett

The Louisiana Supreme Court ruled only the state government has the legal authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, and refused to even hear legal objections from environmentalists.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Injecting Some Sense Into Fracking Regulation
PDDNET
Karl Stephan

The July issue of Scientific American carried the best summary of the fracking-earthquake controversy I have seen so far. "Drilling For Earthquakes" by Anna Kuchment reviews the fracking (hydraulic fracturing), the associated water injection, the earthquakes, the science, and government reactions to the problem. In particular, the article shows the very different approaches the states of Texas and Oklahoma have taken to the problem. And I regret to say it doesn't make my native state of Texas look good by comparison. But first, the basics.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
In the Birthplace of U.S. Oil, Methane Gas Is Leaking Everywhere
Rig Zone
Bloomberg

In Pennsylvania, birthplace of the U.S. oil industry, century-old abandoned oil wells have long been part of the landscape. Nobody gave much thought to it when many were left unplugged or filled haphazardly with dirt, lumber and cannon balls that slipped or rotted away. But the holes -- hundreds of thousands of them pockmark the state -- are the focus of growing alarm, especially those in close proximity to new wells fracked in the Marcellus shale formation, the nation’s largest natural-gas field. They leak methane, which contaminates water, adds to global warming and occasionally explodes; four people have been killed in the past dozen years.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
New Josh Fox film at the Tusten Theater on June 25 'How to Let Go' acknowledges it may be too late to save the earth
The Pike County Courier


NARROWSBURG — In the film "How to Let Go of the World and Love All the Things Climate Can't Change," Josh Fox continues in his deeply personal style in investigating climate change. The film will be show at the Tusten Theatre in Narrowsburg at 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 25, followed by a panel discussion with Fox and others.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
Louisiana High Court Upholds Exploration Ruling
Oil Price


Fracking, which has garnered a great deal of controversy over the years, was the subject of a lawsuit in Louisiana, when the Louisiana Supreme Court decided not to hear an appeal from the citizens group, Concerned Citizens of St. Tammany and St. Tammany Parish.   [Full Story]

Jun 20, 2016
'Virtually unregulated': Radioactive fracking-waste rules in the US slammed in report
RT News


States involved in the fracking boom employ a patchwork of laws to deal with radioactive drilling waste, according to a new report. The US government does not fully regulate disposal, and industry is largely left to self-regulate. The Marcellus Shale in the Appalachian Basin is the center of heightened hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, activity in the US. States along the Marcellus include Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and New York. These four states handle many tons of radioactive fracking byproduct in a variety of ways, according to a new report by the Center for Public Integrity (CPI), and there is no federal agency that fully regulates drilling waste. Thus, energy companies and their interests end up taking control in the race to attract more drilling business in the region, experts told CPI.  [Full Story]

Jun 19, 2016
Natural Gas: Don’t Get Too Comfortable
The Wall Street Journal
SPENCER JAKAB

Companies that lost billions on natural-gas bets may be making the same mistake with LNG The best laid plans often go awry for natural-gas companies. A testament to that is billions of dollars of infrastructure around the world that is rusting or draining owners’ finances because someone extrapolated the status quo. Why should this time be different? The latest big shift in natural gas has been a swing from a seller’s to a buyer’s market for seaborne liquefied natural gas. The 2011 Fukushima disaster that hobbled Japan’s nuclear industry and breakneck growth in demand from countries such as China and India eager to wean themselves off coal had created a tight market.  [Full Story]

Jun 19, 2016
Texas facing massive well cleanup costs after oil bust
The Dallas Morning News
PAUL J. WEBER

The worst oil bust since the 1980s is putting Texas and other oil producing states on the hook for thousands of newly abandoned drilling sites at a time when they have little money to plug wells and seal off environmental hazards. In Texas alone, the roughly $165 million price tag of plugging nearly 10,000 abandoned wells is double the entire budget of the agency that regulates the industry.  [Full Story]

Jun 19, 2016
Texas agency declines to say if it has oil spills records
Star-Telegram
Associated Press

EL PASO, TEXAS The agency charged with protecting the Texas environment has declined to say whether it has any record of oil slicks and inundated fracking sites shown in photographs of flooding on several rivers in 2015 and 2016. The photos, which were taken by the Civil Air Patrol, were posted on a University of Texas website before the Department of Public Safety removed them from public view, citing safety concerns. The El Paso Times reports (http://bit.ly/1W7ykaL ) that the photos were removed shortly after it began reporting on the images in May.   [Full Story]

Jun 19, 2016
State supreme court won’t hear St. Tammany fracking appeal
Washington Times
Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A sharply divided Louisiana Supreme Court has refused to hear a challenge to the state Department of Natural Resources’ decision to award a permit to a company that wants to drill an oil well in St. Tammany Parish.  [Full Story]

Jun 18, 2016
Texas Democrats approve, and disapprove, moratoriums on fracking
My Statesman
Jonathan Tilove

SAN ANTONIO — The Texas Democratic Party approved a platform Saturday that scrapped language calling for a moratorium on new hydraulic fracturing in Texas. A little while later, the same state convention approved a tough climate change resolution calling for “an end to the ecologically destructive extraction method known as fracking.”  [Full Story]

Jun 18, 2016
Breaking Americans’ Addiction to ‘Meth’ (Methane Gas, That Is)
Truthdig
Stanley Heller

On June 12, I listened to Dr. Robert Howarth tell a meeting of 350CT, a Connecticut-based group promoting grass-roots environmental organization, about a briefing he had given last month to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Howarth is professor of ecology and environmental biology at Cornell University and an associate of former top NASA climate scientist James Hansen. In 2011 he was in the running for Time magazine’s “Person of the Year.” His message this summer is that we know what to do to solve our climate worries, but we’re on the wrong path and have only a very short time to change direction.   [Full Story]

Jun 18, 2016
Ohio’s Utica oil production drops for first time, natural gas production still growing
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

Ohio’s oil production from the Utica Shale dropped for the first time while natural gas production continued to grow in new quarterly data released by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.  [Full Story]

Jun 18, 2016
Bankruptcies, foreclosures up in areas where gas, coal employees lost jobs
TribLive
David Conti & Chris Fleisher

A year after being laid off by oilfield services giant Halliburton, Sean McGrath says he is in “survival mode.” “We're struggling to pay every bill we have,” said McGrath, 50, of West Wheatfield in Indiana County, who is trying to support his wife and four children on about $600 per month in Social Security benefits he gets for an autistic son.  [Full Story]

Jun 17, 2016
Can the Hulk convince the DNC to call for a fracking ban?
Grist
Katie Herzog

Environmentalists had a chance to make their case for the Democratic party’s official stance on climate change on Friday, in front of the Democratic National Committee’s platform planning commission. Green groups have been largely split on the Democratic presidential nomination, with larger, mainstream organizations endorsing Hillary Clinton and smaller, leftist groups going for Sanders. The League of Conservation Voters and Sierra Club, which endorsed Clinton, sent representatives, while the pro-Sanders crowd included Mark Ruffalo, Gasland director Josh Fox, and Friends of the Earth President Erich Pica.  [Full Story]

Jun 17, 2016
Amid Phoenix Heat Wave, DNC Committee Hears Anti-Fracking Arguments
Common Dreams
Deirdre Fulton

As "rare, dangerous, and deadly" heat moves into Arizona this weekend, environmentalists are calling for the Democratic Party to take a firm stance against fossil fuel extraction in its 2016 platform—starting with a national ban on fracking. The 2016 Democratic Platform Drafting Committee is holding the second in a series of regional hearings this Friday and Saturday in Phoenix, Arizona. This round of testimony is expected to focus on energy and the environment as well as health and safety.  [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
Range Resources, TestAmerica accused of fraud in suit
Observer-Reporter
David Singer

A lab company Range Resources hired to test water in 2011 that federal authorities later found to be contaminated in Amwell Township is being accused in Washington County Court of altering test results. Attorney Kendra Smith, representing John, Beth and Ashley Voyles, argued Thursday before Senior Judge William Nalitz that TestAmerica conspired with Range Resources employees to prevent data of nitrates and other specific contaminants from appearing in a final report given to the Voyles family and Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. DEP found the water not to be contaminated based on TestAmerica results, but federal Environmental Protection Agency officials ruled the property’s water on McAdams Road was not safe to drink. The Voyleses are also parties in a lawuit, along with the Haney and Kiskadden famiies, claiming Range’s operations at the nearby Yeager well site and impoundment contaminated their water supplies and caused bodily harm. The problems at the Yeager site were included in a $4.1 million fine levied by DEP against Range.  [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
'Threat Map' Aims to Highlight the Worst of Oil and Gas Air Pollution
Inside Climate News
Zahra Hirji

Environmentalists have launched a new mapping tool that allows people in the U.S. to see whether they live and work in areas at risk of harmful air pollution from nearby oil and gas activities. According to the map, which was published online Wednesday by the advocacy groups Earthworks and the Clean Air Task Force, a lot of people do: about 12.4 million people live within a half-mile of active oil and gas wells and related facilities that could release harmful pollutants such as benzene and formaldehyde into the air. The map also details the 238 counties in 21 states that potentially face a high cancer risk because of that pollution.   [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
EPA Bans Fracking Wastewater from Sewage Treatment Plants
Common Dreams
Elizabeth Ouzts

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has banned fracking wastewater from public sewage plants, citing the inability of these plants to handle toxic and radioactive pollutants. Clean water and public health advocates, along with more than 30,000 Americans, had submitted comments in favor of the EPA rule, finalized earlier this week. "Allowing toxic, radioactive wastewater to be treated at the same place as dirty bathwater defies all logic," said Rachel Richardson, Stop Drilling Program director for Environment America. "This is a commonsense step to help protect our water and our health from the dangers of fracking."  [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
NASA: Porter Ranch Gas Leak Was So Big It Could Be Seen From Space
EcoWatch
Katie Pohlman

Aliso Canyon‘s methane leak in Porter Ranch in October 2015 marked the first time an orbiting spacecraft measured a leak from a single facility on Earth. The leak was spotted by the Hyperion spectrometer on NASA’s Earth Observing-1, according to a study by David R. Thompson, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, recently published in the Geophysical Research Letters journal. NASA’s statement explained: “The observation … is an important breakthrough in our ability to eventually measure and monitor emissions of this potent greenhouse gas from space.”  [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
Toxic Chemicals Found in Residents Living Near Oil and Gas Operations in Pavillion, Wyoming
EcoWatch
Coming Clean

A coalition of community and environmental health groups released Thursday a first-of-its-kind research combining air monitoring methods with new biomonitoring techniques to determine if toxic air emissions from natural gas operations could be detected in the bodies of nearby residents.   [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
Canada lent billions to oil, gas and mining companies. Then it made a profit
National Observer
Mike De Souza

On the same day that President Barack Obama rejected TransCanada Corp’s proposed Keystone XL pipeline, a Canadian crown corporation threw the company a lifeline. Export Development Canada, a taxpayer-owned organization that operates as a commercial investment bank, signed two deals on that day, Nov. 6, 2015, offering between $150 million to $350 million in loans to TransCanada, a Calgary-based company.  [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
Gas drilling impact fees fall to $188 million
State Impact PA
Marie Cusick

As expected Pennsylvania’s gas drilling impact fees fell to the lowest amount ever last year, according to figures released by the state Public Utility Commission Wednesday.   [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
Exxon Sues Massachusetts Attorney General to Block Climate Fraud Investigation
EcoWatch
Lorraine Chow

ExxonMobil filed a lawsuit against Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey in an effort to block a subpoena that would require the oil and gas giant to hand over 40 years of internal communications relating to whether the company misrepresented its knowledge of climate change to investors.   [Full Story]

Jun 16, 2016
TransCanada Wins Bid for Underwater Gas Pipeline Across Gulf of Mexico
EcoWatch
Steve Horn

TransCanada, owner of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline currently being contested in federal court and in front of a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) legal panel, has won a $2.1 billion joint venture bid with Sempra Energy for a pipeline to shuttle gas obtained from fracking in Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale basin across the Gulf of Mexico and into Mexico.  [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
UPDATE 1-Exxon asks U.S. court to throw out subpoena in climate change inquiry
CNBC
Terry Wade

HOUSTON, June 15 (Reuters) - Exxon Mobil Corp asked a federal court on Wednesday to throw out a subpoena that would force the oil company to hand over decades of documents as part of a wide-ranging inquiry into whether it misled investors about climate change risks.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
UK fracking company proposes to dump wastewater into the sea
Inhabitat
Lacy Cooke

As public concern continues over the environmental costs of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, one United Kingdom company said they would toss wastewater from their operations into the sea. Fracking demands huge quantities of water, up to six million gallons per well, but anywhere from 20 to 40 percent comes back to the surface as “flowback” filled with metals, salts, and naturally occurring radioactive materials. While they said the wastewater would be treated, some experts have expressed unease over how effective treatment would be.  [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
Fracking waste ruling blow to local control
Register-Herald
Letter to Editor Korinna Garfield

Saturday’s article “Judge rules Fayette fracking ban invalid” told a familiar story about the federal government denying local communities the right to regulate fracking, as a judge overturned Fayette County’s ban on fracking wastewater disposal. West Virginia now joins the growing list of states that have limited local control of fracking which also includes Ohio, Colorado, Texas, North Carolina and Oklahoma.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
County commissioners say absolutely no to fracking
Huron Daily Tribune
Bradley Massman

In a 7-0 vote of support, commissioners passed a resolution at this week’s board meeting to officially state its opposition to fracking technology.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
Maryland readies to make fracking rules by October 1
Morgan Messenger


Maryland Department of the Environment (“the Department”) will be holding three public meetings to discuss the development of new regulations for oil and gas exploration and production. The Department is required by State law to adopt new regulations to provide for the hydraulic fracturing of a well for the exploration or production of natural gas by October 1.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
Coalition Calls on NY to Stop Fossil-Fuel Development
Public News Service


Calling itself "United Against Fossil Fuels," the group spoke out about the harmful effects of fracked oil and gas development on New York residents and the environment. Even though fracking has been banned in New York, said Becky Meier, co-founder of Stop New York Fracked Gas Pipeline, building pipelines just perpetuates that damage.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
TransMexico? Keystone XL Owner TransCanada Wins Bid For Underwater Gas Pipeline Across Gulf of Mexico
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

TransCanada, owner of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline currently being contested in federal court and in front of a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) legal panel, has won a $2.1 billion joint venture bid with Sempra Energy for a pipeline to shuttle gas obtained from hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) in Texas' Eagle Ford Shale basin across the Gulf of Mexico and into Mexico. The 500-mile long Sur de Texas-Tuxpan pipeline, as reported on previously by DeSmog, is part of an extensive pipeline empire TransCanada is building from the U.S. to Mexico. The pipeline network is longer than the currently operating southern leg of the Keystone pipeline (now dubbed the Gulf Coast Pipeline). Unlike Keystone XL, though, these piecemeal pipeline section bid wins have garnered little media attention or scrutiny beyond the business and financial press.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
This gas leak was so massive that NASA saw it from space
Washington Post
Chris Mooney & Brady Dennis

Recent research suggests that the Los Angeles-area leak poured 97,100 metric tons of the powerful greenhouse gas into the atmosphere between late October 2015 and February. The study also found that the leak, if translated into automotive tailpipe emissions, would be equivalent to the effect of the yearly greenhouse gas emissions from 572,000 cars. Now, new research from NASA and its partners has underscored in a different way how big it was: A satellite-based instrument was able to identify and isolate the leak from space, the first time this has ever been accomplished for a single-source emission of methane.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
Pennsylvania counties see less money from gas drilling fee
The Island Packet
Associated Press

HARRISBURG, PA. Pennsylvania counties and municipal governments will see less money from a state fee on Marcellus Shale gas wells, as expected. The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission said Wednesday that impact fee revenue from Marcellus Shale wells dropped by $36 million to about $188 million.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
Oil, Gas Drillers Said Facing $2 Trillion Funding Gap
Bloomberg
Meenal Vamburkar

Drillers forced to slash spending during the oil slump may soon be facing another hurdle: a funding shortfall to the tune of $2 trillion over the next five years.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
New Mexico wrestles with cleanup costs at oil wells
News & Observer
Morgan Lee

SANTA FE, N.M. New Mexico regulators overseeing oil leases on state trust lands are seeking to set aside more funding as they grapple with repairing damage in the wake of spills of oily salt water by a Texas-based company. State Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn unveiled proposed legislation Wednesday to create a fund that could accumulate up to $5 million to help restore state trust lands after unforeseen damage from oil-industry spills along with illegal dumping, wildfires and even invasive plant species.   [Full Story]

Jun 15, 2016
Interactive Map Shows Where Toxic Air Pollution From Oil and Gas Industry Is Threatening 12.4 Million Americans
EcoWatch
Earthworks

Two leading national environmental groups—Clean Air Task Force (CATF) and Earthworks—unveiled a suite of tools Wednesday designed to inform and mobilize Americans about the health risks from toxic air pollution from the oil and gas industry.   [Full Story]

Jun 14, 2016
Air pollution shows up more during ‘flowback’ on natural gas wells
Aspen Public Radio
Elise Thatcher

Fracking can produce air pollution, but many more emissions likely happen during the next stage at a natural gas well. Researchers with Colorado State University collected air quality data at approximately ten well pads in Garfield County between 2013 and 2015. The idea was to closely review methane and other emissions during the stages before and after a well produces natural gas. CSU professor Jeff Collett led the study and presented results to Garfield County commissioners on Tuesday.   [Full Story]

Jun 14, 2016
Warren man charged, allegedly dumped fracking waste into Mahoning River
News Net 5
Cynthia Holmberg

A Warren man was charged for directing a former employee of a Youngstown-based company to dump fracking waste into a tributary of the Mahoning River, which is a source of public drinking water for several Ohio cities. Though hazardous pollutants were dumped into a drain that flowed into the tributary, it ultimately flowed into the Mahoning River itself, according to the Northern Ohio U.S. Attorney's Office in a news release Monday. The discharge from one of the waste disposals was black in color according to the USAO.  [Full Story]

Jun 14, 2016
New data will help Colorado study health effects of fracking
US News
Dan Elliott

New data on air pollution from fracking wells in Colorado will be a big help in assessing whether the emissions are harmful to human health, state officials say.   [Full Story]

Jun 14, 2016
EPA bans disposal of fracking waste water at public treatment plants
State Impact PA
Jon Hurdle

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has banned the disposal of hydraulic fracturing waste water at public sewage plants, formalizing a voluntary practice that removed most fracking waste from Pennsylvania plants starting in 2011.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Gov. Wolf, House GOP Agree To Make DEP Start Over On Conventional Drilling Regs
PA Environment Digest


The House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee Wednesday voted 18 to 5 to amend Senate Bill 279 (Hutchinson-R-Venango), which establishes the PA Grade Crude Development Advisory Council, with language abrogating DEP’s Chapter 78 conventional drilling regulations and forcing the agency to start the rulemaking process over.  [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
PA Environmental Council: Much Work To Do To Modernize Conventional Drilling Regs
PA Environment Digest


Davitt Woodwell, President of the PA Environmental Council, Wednesday issued this statement in reaction to House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee action on DEP’s updated drilling regulations— “The Pennsylvania General Assembly today allowed an important step forward in managing unconventional shale gas development in the Commonwealth.  [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Clean Power Coalition Denounces Action To Stall Climate Change, Gut DEP Drilling Regs
PA Environment Digest


The Clean Power PA Coalition, representing many of Pennsylvania’s environmental, clean energy business, public health and conservation community, Wednesday denounced the Senate’s passage of Senate Bill 1195 (White-R-Indiana), which would delay much-needed and publicly-supported action to tackle climate change.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
POLITICO New York Energy: NY Dems back AG on Exxon case; solar flight lands in NYC
Politico New York
David Giambusso & Scott Waldman

New York’s Democratic Congressional delegation is backing state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman as he takes on the fossil fuel industry over its role in researching, and allegedly obscuring, the effects of climate change. On Friday, the 16 members sent a letter to U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas backing Schneiderman’s investigation into ExxonMobil for allegedly defrauding investors. Last month, Smith, chairman of the House Science Committee and climate change skeptic, inserted himself into the investigation which Schneiderman launched. Smith, who hails from the epicenter of the nation’s energy output, demanded all communications between Schneiderman’s office and environmental groups in the last four years.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
MSNBC’s fracking push revealed in new documents
RT


New documents reveal how the supposedly ‘liberal’ cable news network MSNBC pushed the polluting gas extraction method known as fracking to its audience, in a calculated example of the mainstream media shilling for its corporate interests. Documents obtained from Oklahoma State University (OSU) through the state’s Open Records Act reveal a clear decision by MSNBC to promote fracking along with natural gas as "solutions" to America's energy problems.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Fayette County Commissioner and Oil & Gas Exec Spar Over Fracking Waste
WAJR
Alex Wiederspiel

FAYETTEVILLE, W.Va. — WV Oil & Natural Gas Association Executive Director Corky Demarco and Fayette County Commission President Matthew Wender debated the merits of Friday’s federal court ruling that invalidated the Fayette County frack waste ordinance.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Sen. Lewis helps pass fracking moratorium
Daily times Chronicle


BOSTON – This week, the Massachusetts Senate passed legislation to place a 10-year moratorium on fracking and the disposal of fracking wastewater in the Commonwealth.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Internal Documents Reveal How MSNBC Show Worked To Promote Fracking
DeSmog Blog


Cable TV network MSNBC has made headlines in recent days for apparently moving away from its “Lean Forward” progressive brand, catering instead to a more center-to-right-leaning crowd.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Flaring, fracking safety questions abound
Daily Times
Casey Junkins

WHEELING - As natural gas industry leaders tout use of their fuel as a means to curb carbon dioxide pollution, operators and processors continue flaring off some of their products throughout the Marcellus and Utica shale region.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
IN PHOTOS: THE FACES AND PLACES OF THE FRACKING BOOM
Allegheny Front
Kara Holsopple

The story of the fracking boom in Pennsylvania and nearby states runs as an almost continuous narrative in the region’s press. But covering the blow-by-blow of new drilling sites, protests, lawsuits and regulations is just one way to look at how fracking has changed the region.  [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
LISTEN - Study suggests fracking could affect global warming
Minster FM News


An international team of scientists, including academics from the University of York, have identified an increase in the concentrations of ethane and propane gas over much of the Northern Hemisphere since around 2009, probably due to increasing North American oil and natural gas production.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Diana Nelson Jones' Walkabout: Marcellus Shale documentary brings photographers together at Pittsburgh Center for the Arts
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Diana Nelson Jones Opinion

On one wall of an exhibit at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, projected maps of Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia show a running tally of gas well sites or drilling permits — a dot representing each. The counter goes so fast you can’t read it, like the National Debt Clock in Times Square in New York City.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Energy bill sails through House to Senate
Sentinel & Enterprise
Bob Katzen

ENERGY (H 4377): House, 154-1, approved and sent to the Senate a bill requiring utilities to solicit and agree to 15-to-20-year contracts for large amounts of hydroelectric and offshore wind power. Provisions include: requiring all contract proposals to go through a competitive bidding process; requiring contracts to be cost-effective for ratepayers; and requiring that eligible offshore wind developers build projects in federally leased waters.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Activists Tell Feds to "Keep It In The Ground"
Public News Service


RENO, Nev. - Several hundred anti-fracking advocates are planning a big rally in Reno tomorrow to protest the auction of oil and gas leases. The Bureau of Land Management plans to sell contracts to extract natural resources from 115 square miles of federal land in the Smoky Valley.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Federal Court Rules WV County Injection Well Ban Violates State Law
NGI Shale Daily
Jeremiah Shelor

A federal judge last week ruled that an ordinance passed by a Southern West Virginia county banning the disposal of oil and natural gas wastewater in underground injection wells violates state laws and is preempted by the state's regulatory primacy over the practice.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
NC WARN alleges criminal fraud in methane studies at fracking sites
News & Observer
John Murawski

NC WARN, a Durham environmental advocacy group, and a Fayetteville engineer have teamed up to lodge federal allegations of scientific fraud against a Texas engineering professor who led key studies into methane leakage at shale gas drilling sites around the country. NC WARN filed the charges with the Environmental Protection Agency, asking the agency’s Office of Inspector General to investigate what the Durham group describes as misleading science that gives the fossil fuel industry political cover to continue spewing methane into the atmosphere.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Colorado Holds Second-Largest Natural Gas Formation Despite find, another natural gas boom not forthcoming
Compressor Tech 2


The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) states that western Colorado, specifically the Mancos Shale formation in the state’s Piceance Basin, holds about 66.3 Tcf (1.87 X 1012 m3) of natural gas. That amount is 40 times higher than previously expected, and up from the 2003 number, which was 1.6 Tcf (45.3 X 109 m3). The data comes from new research and commercial drilling companies, USGS said. The data also revealed that the formation also holds 74 million barrels of shale oil and 45 million barrels of natural gas liquids.   [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
Sen. Lewis helps pass fracking moratorium
Daily Times Chronicle


BOSTON – This week, the Massachusetts Senate passed legislation to place a 10-year moratorium on fracking and the disposal of fracking wastewater in the Commonwealth.  [Full Story]

Jun 13, 2016
How Joseph Percoco, Cuomo’s Problem-Solver, Became a Problem
The New York Times
JESSE McKINLEY and VIVIAN YEE

At an event in Ithaca during Mr. Cuomo’s 2010 campaign for governor, an anti-fracking protester handed one of Mr. Cuomo’s daughters a CD with information about the controversial drilling technique. It was not long before Walter Hang, an anti-fracking advocate, received a phone call, Mr. Hang recalled. Mr. Percoco was on the line. “They saw this as an affront,” recalled Mr. Hang, who had been expecting to meet with Mr. Cuomo that afternoon. “He barks at me, ‘They’re your people.’” The meeting was permanently off.   [Full Story]

Jun 12, 2016
Federal Judge Strikes Down West Virginia Fracking Ban
Daily Caller
Andrew Follett

A federal judge ruled Friday a West Virginia local government ordinance effectively banning hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, violates state and federal law. Federal Judge John T. Copenhaver struck down an ordinance of Fayette County, W.V., saying aspects of it weren’t enforceable and were pre-empted by state and federal law.   [Full Story]

Jun 11, 2016
Initiative’s setbacks ?would cap ?drilling
Daily Sentinel
Dennis Webb

If a certain state ballot initiative passes this fall, “1 percent” in Garfield and Rio Blanco counties could come to mean something far more local than the well-worn political reference to the nation’s wealthiest class.   [Full Story]

Jun 11, 2016
Massachusetts Senate wants moratorium on fracking The bill calling for a 10-year ban aims to head off drilling in the Connecticut River Valley.
Portland Press Herald
Associated Press

BOSTON — The Massachusetts Senate is backing a 10-year moratorium on fracking in the state. The bill was approved unanimously Thursday. It would also bar disposal in Massachusetts of wastewater from fracking.   [Full Story]

Jun 11, 2016
Radioactive Ranchers? Elements Found Downwind of Intensive Fracking
The Tyee
Andrew Nikiforuk

At first, Nielle and Howard Hawkwood, who have ranched in Alberta's foothills for 40 years, couldn't believe the 'in-your-face industrialization' that accompanied the horizontal drilling and fracking of tight oil wells around Cochrane, Alberta. It began in 2009 when the so-called Cardium oil boom abruptly dotted the rolling landscape with scores of well pads, oil batteries, and new access roads. The companies were drilling lateral wells, which turn 90 degrees and travel for kilometres underground, extending under people's barns and homes. (Tight oil costs more to extract and produces lower quantities of oil.)  [Full Story]

Jun 10, 2016
Where to, Hillary? How Clinton Is Relying on President Obama’s Help
The New York Times
MICHAEL D. SHEAR and PATRICK HEALY

“There is not a battleground state on the map where President Obama is not an asset,” said Brian Fallon, a spokesman for the Clinton campaign. Mr. Obama’s advocacy for free-trade agreements and his administration’s rules allowing hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, are unpopular with liberals, among others. And it is unclear how effective the president can be in transferring his popularity to Mrs. Clinton. During the midterm elections of 2010 and 2014, Mr. Obama campaigned on behalf of Democratic lawmakers but his party was routed by Republicans both times.  [Full Story]

Jun 10, 2016
Yorkshire fracking approval may be unlawful, campaigners say
The Guardian
Nazia Parveen

Anti-fracking campaigners have claimed that a decision to allow energy companies to drill for shale gas in Yorkshire could be challenged in court. The fracking firm Third Energy was given permission last month to carry out test drilling at a site in Kirby Misperton in Rydale, North Yorkshire, even after locals opposed the application. Friends of the Earth and a local campaign group, Frack Free Ryedale, have written to North Yorkshire county council claiming the decision could be illegal. They have warned their letter could be followed by an application to the courts to have the decision overturned.  [Full Story]

Jun 10, 2016
Can Bernie Sanders Help Rewrite Democratic Platform to Ban Fracking & Keep Oil in the Soil?
Democracy Now!


As the Democratic platform committee meets in Washington, we speak to Michelle Chan, spokesperson for Friends of the Earth Action. She is working on recommendations for environmentalist and 350.org co-founder Bill McKibben, one of Sanders’ selections on the Democratic platform drafting committee. Climate activists have delivered more than 90,000 petitions to the DNC demanding the party’s platform for the 2016 race include a nationwide ban on fracking, which Sanders has backed, while Clinton has focused on the need for regulating the industry.  [Full Story]

Jun 10, 2016
Whistleblower Says EPA Officials Covered Up Toxic Fracking Methane Emissions for Years
EcoWatch
Nika Knight

An environmental watchdog alleges that the answer may be a years-long, systematic cover-up of the true data surrounding these toxic emissions. That cover-up, the group says, was at the hands of at least one EPA researcher who accepted payments from the oil and gas industry.   [Full Story]

Jun 10, 2016
Mass. Senate Passes 10-Year Fracking Moratorium
Common Dreams
Press Release

Boston, MA. - The Massachusetts Senate approved a bill yesterday to place a ten-year moratorium on fracking and the disposal of fracking wastewater in the Commonwealth. “Across the country, fracking is polluting drinking water and making families sick,” said Ben Hellerstein, State Director for Environment Massachusetts. “We applaud Senate leaders for taking steps to ensure this dirty drilling and its toxic waste never come to Massachusetts.”   [Full Story]

Jun 10, 2016
SUPREME COURT: Term went from 'sleepy' to stunning
E&E Publishing
Robin Bravender

A Supreme Court term that started off as lackluster for environmental law enthusiasts has turned out to be one for the history books.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Mark Ruffalo on New York State's Environmental Leadership
You Tube


Actor and environmentalist Mark Ruffalo shares how New York has led the way in protecting the environment for future generations.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Whistleblower: EPA Official Covered Up Methane Leakage Problems across US Natural Gas Industry — News Release from NC WARN
Common Dreams


Inspector General called to investigate scientific fraud that wasted crucial years in slowing climate crisis while risking safety of workers, communities DURHAM, NC - A watchdog group today charged that a high-ranking federal official connected to the fossil fuel industry committed scientific fraud and possibly criminal misconduct in a case with sweeping ramifications for global climate change and the safety of workers and neighbors of natural gas sites across much of the United States. The group called for an expedited investigation due to the urgent climate and safety implications of the EPA’s failure to curb widespread methane emissions. NC WARN, a 28 year-old climate and energy justice nonprofit, filed a 68-page complaint today with the Inspector General of the US Environmental Protection Agency based on written evidence and testimony provided by the engineer who invented the primary technology used to measure leakage and deliberate venting of natural gas. The complaint says the device’s severe underreporting of emissions during two high-profile studies has ramifications for releases of methane at hundreds of thousands of tanks, drilling sites and other gas equipment around the world.  [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
After Keystone XL: TransCanada Building North American Fracked Gas Pipeline Empire
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

Though President Barack Obama and his State Department nixed the northern leg of TransCanada's Keystone XL tar sands pipeline in November, the Canadian pipeline company giant has continued the fight in a federal lawsuit in Houston, claiming the Obama Administration has violated the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). As the NAFTA lawsuit works its way through pre-trial hearings and motions — and as Keystone XL has become a campaign talking point for Republican Party presidential candidate Donald Trump — TransCanada has quietly consolidated an ambitious North America-wide fracked gas-carrying pipeline network over the past half year. Since Keystone XL North got the boot, TransCanada has either won permits or announced business moves in Canada, the United States and Mexico which will vastly expand its pipeline footprint and ability to move gas obtained via hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) to market.  [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Climate Activists Call for Fracking Ban in DNC Platform
Democracy Now


Climate activists have delivered more than 90,000 petitions to the Democratic National Committee demanding the party’s platform for the 2016 race include a nationwide ban on fracking. This comes as voters in Butte County, California, have approved a local ban on fracking, the oil and gas drilling technique critics say threatens health and the climate.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Texas Green Activist Plans “Guerilla Manuever” Against Fracking
Independent Women's Forum
Jillian Kay Melchior

An environmental activist has launched a “guerilla maneuver” plan to force the Texas Democratic Party to work toward fracking bans in the energy-rich state, the Austin American-Statesman reports.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Green Party call for total ban on fracking in Ireland
Donegal Now


The Green Party has published a motion calling for an all-island ban on fracking. The motion calls for the Government to recognise the concern over exploratory drilling in Co. Antrim, to raise the issue on an intergovernmental level with the Northern Ireland Executive, and seek an all-island ban on fracking. The Green Party will be seeking cross-party support for the motion.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
State Suing Business Owner Convicted In Fracking Waste Dumping Case
WCBE
Associated Press

Republican Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is suing the owner of a Youngstown company sentenced to prison for dumping fracking waste into a storm sewer in 2012 and 2013.  [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Pinellas County Commission passes fracking ban
Tampa Bay Weekly
Suzette Porter

CLEARWATER – More than a dozen people spoke in support of an ordinance that bans fracking in Pinellas County during a June 7 public hearing. The Commission gave its unanimous approval. There was no opposition.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
After Keystone XL: TransCanada Building North American Fracked Gas Pipeline Empire
DeSmog Blog
Steve Horn

Though President Barack Obama and his State Department nixed the northern leg of TransCanada's Keystone XL tar sands pipeline in November, the Canadian pipeline company giant has continued the fight in a federal lawsuit in Houston, claiming the Obama Administration has violated the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Unlikely casualty in California's renewable energy boom: natural gas
Reuters
Nichola Groom

In February of 2001, then California Governor Gray Davis stood at the site of Calpine Corp's new Sutter natural gas power plant and unveiled his plan to fast-track construction of similar stations to add 20,000 megawatts of modern, efficient generation to the state in three years. Today, the plants inaugurated that day are among the casualties of a monumental shift in the U.S. energy landscape.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Methane emissions are extremely harmful, and the government might not know how much there is.
Washington Post
Darryl Fears

Methane is colorless and odorless. But it’s a powerhouse in the way it contributes to global warming. In the atmosphere, it’s more than 100 times more potent than carbon dioxide.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Anti-Fracking Momentum Grows with Another People's Victory in California Measure E passed with an overwhelming 71 percent, making Butte County the fourth in the state to ban fracking
Common Dreams
Lauren McCauley

Notching another victory for the growing national anti-fracking movement, voters in Butte County, California on Tuesday overwhelmingly passed a measure that bans the controversial oil and gas drilling process in their communities. Measure E won with 71 percent of the vote, making Butte the fourth California county to pass such a measure, following Mendocino, San Benito, and Santa Cruz counties, and adding to the growing list of states and municipalities across the nation that have come out against fracking.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Challenge could open door to drilling
Wayne Independent
Kevin Kearney

Curt Coccodrilli, owner of Lake Ariel-based Wayne Land and Mineral Group, is challenging the years-long drilling moratorium imposed by the New Jersey-based Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC), saying the regulatory organization is overstepping its bounds in making certain restrictions.  [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Federal Report Appears to Undercut EPA Assurances on Water Safety In Pennsylvania Dimock, one of many places where gas drilling boomed in Pennsylvania, gets a sobering take on the quality of its drinking water.
ProPublica
Abrhm Lustgarten

But the last word about the quality of Dimock’s water came from assurances in a 2012 statement from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — the federal department charged with safeguarding the Americans’ drinking water. The agency declared that the water coming out of Dimock’s taps did not require emergency action, such as a federal cleanup. The agency’s stance was widely interpreted to mean the water was safe. Now another federal agency charged with protecting public health has analyzed the same set of water samples, and determined that is not the case.   [Full Story]

Jun 9, 2016
Whistleblower: EPA Officials Covered Up Toxic Fracking Emissions for Years 'The cover-up has allowed the industry to dig in for years of delay in cutting emissions—at the worst possible time'
Common Dreams
Nika Knight

Why has the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) failed to take adequate action against disastrous, climate-warming methane emissions from the fracking industry? An environmental watchdog alleges that the answer may be a years-long, systematic cover-up of the true data surrounding these toxic emissions. That cover-up, the group says, was at the hands of at least one EPA researcher who accepted payments from the oil and gas industry.   [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Shell 'fracked' well in field that spilled oil into Gulf
WWLTV
David Hammer

NEW ORLEANS -- Fracking chemicals were used on at least one of the four Shell oil wells in an offshore field that leaked nearly 90,000 gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico last month, but those chemicals were likely long gone before the spill, federal regulators tell WWL-TV.   [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Anti-fracking protesters disrupt Hickenlooper's book event in Boulder Colorado Community Rights Network upset at Colorado governor
Daily Camera
Carah Wertheimer

A book talk by Gov. John Hickenlooper at the First Congregational Church in Boulder turned unexpectedly chaotic Wednesday night when it was disrupted by anti-fracking protesters from a group called the Colorado Community Rights Network. The Colorado governor was forced to abandon his initial effort to speak. Smiling, Hickenlooper appeared to take it in stride, eventually jumping on the church piano and playing a lively tune  [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Methane leak in Calif. up to 100 times worse than EPA reported, complaint says
Press of Atlantic City
Ivan Penn

An environmental organization filed a federal complaint Wednesday, alleging that key reports by a top U.S. Environmental Protection Agency official wrongfully stated the severity of methane leaks across the nation’s natural gas industry.   [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Toxic Landslides Polluting Peace River Raise Alarms About Fracking, Site C
DeSmog Canada
Ben Parfitt

Toxic heavy metals, including arsenic, barium, cadmium, lithium and lead, are flowing unchecked into the Peace River following a series of unusual landslides that may be linked to natural gas industry fracking operations.   [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
How Bernie Sanders Made Hillary Clinton Into a Greener Candidate If Clinton keeps her promise to restrict fracking, Sanders will deserve a share of the credit.
Mother Jones
Ben Adler

But if ever there were a losing campaign that achieved some major wins, it's Sanders'. Not only did he force Clinton to talk more about economic inequality, he pushed her to promise stronger action to fight climate change and rein in fossil fuel companies. If Clinton becomes president and keeps some of her more recent promises to restrict oil drilling and fracking, Sanders will deserve a share of the credit.  [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Western Colorado has 40 times more natural gas than thought State might have second-largest formation in country, according to U.S. Geological Survey
Denver Post
Associated Press

Western Colorado has 40 times more natural gas than previously thought, but an immediate boom is unlikely because of low gas prices, government and industry experts said Wednesday.  [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Scotland Bans Fracking Forever
Mint Press
Claire Bernish

Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse claimed the government remains “deeply sceptical” of fracking and none would be allowed to proceed unless distinct evidence proved the practice ‘causes no harm. In one fell swoop, Scotland banned fracking — permanently — when parliament narrowly voted in favor of cementing the country’s temporary moratorium on the controversial practice.  [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Pinellas County Commission bans fracking
Saint Peters Blog
Anne Lindberg

County commissioners voted Tuesday unanimously to ban fracking in Pinellas. “After listening carefully to the latest science and the voices of local residents, Pinellas County Commissioners decided to permanently protect the water, health, and environment of our county from the documented damage of fracking and fracking wastewater,” said Jennifer Rubiello, state director of Environment Florida.   [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Voters Celebrate Landslide Passage of Fracking Ban in Butte County
YubaNet
Food & Water Watch

Chico, CA June 8, 2016 - Voters in Butte County approved a fracking ban by an overwhelming 71 percent Tuesday night making it the fourth California county to ban the dangerous method of oil extraction. San Benito, Santa Cruz and Mendocino counties have also passed fracking bans, as have the cities of Beverly Hills and Carson.   [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Shareholders Urge Freeport-McMoran to Reduce Impacts of Urban Fracking Over 18% of Freeport Shareholders Support Newground Social Investment and As You Sow Proposal on the Risks of Urban Oil Recovery
PR Newswire
Press Release

OAKLAND, Calif., June 8, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Socially responsible investment firm Newground Social Investment, in partnership with shareholder advocacy group As You Sow (AYS), filed a shareholder proposal with Freeport-McMoRan asking the Company to report on steps it is taking to reduce the risks of its urban oil extraction operations, which primarily occur in Los Angeles County.   [Full Story]

Jun 8, 2016
Tens of Thousands Demand DNC Add National Fracking Ban to Party Platform "The Democratic Party has been complicit in the U.S. fracking boom. Any serious plan to combat climate change must include a ban on fracking."
Common Dreams
Nadia Prupis

Climate activists on Wednesday delivered more than 90,000 petitions to the Democratic National Committee (DNC) demanding that the party's 2016 platform include a nationwide ban on fracking. As the DNC convened in Washington, D.C. for its open forum on shaping the platform, activists with Food & Water Watch, 350.org, Honor the Earth, and other groups handed over the appeals and said officials must acknowledge the harm that fracking has caused the environment.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Bernie Sanders debunks ‘local control’ talking points of anti-fracking activists
The Complete Colorado
Simon Lomax

Listen closely and you can hear the sound of anti-fracking talking points going through the shredder. It started less than two weeks ago, when Colorado state officials released a report on a ballot measure banning oil and natural gas drilling within 2,500 feet of buildings or “areas of special concern,” such as rivers, creeks, parks and open space. The report showed the proposed “setback” measure, still in the signature-gathering phase, would prohibit drilling across 90 percent of the state – an effective statewide ban.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Unemployed oil workers find new home in solar industry
MarketPlace
Brenda Salinas

Eighty thousand workers have been laid off across the country as the price of oil has plummeted. In Texas, some out-of-work rig hands, pipe fitters and engineers are finding employment in solar energy. David Webster has been managing the Mission Solar warehouse in San Antonio since February. Before finding work in the solar sector, Webster spent 10 years shipping oil out of rigs all over the world. Now, he makes sure that the solar panels are packaged and distributed to customers across the U.S. Transitioning to solar energy was an adjustment.  [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Is the Texas Democratic Party platform too rosy on fracking?
My Statesman
Asher Price

Determined to press the Texas Democratic Party to adopt a more aggressive stance on climate change and fracking, an Austin environmental activist is gearing up for a guerrilla maneuver on the floor of the party’s state convention next week in San Antonio.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Groups gather to protest fracking in Belmont County
WTOV
Kendall Forward

Activists from all over Belmont County came to Martins Ferry holding signs targeted at fracking and energy industry laws in Ohio. Scott Whitaker organized the group. He's a member of the groups Ohio Valley Peace and Concerned Barnesville Area Residents, two of the many being represented Tuesday.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Chamber beats back anti-fracking policies
Washington Examiner
John Siciliano

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is targeting the anti-fossil fuel policies of Democratic presidential candidates and environmental groups by releasing a report Tuesday that shows the U.S. is more secure due to fracking.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Calhoun residents protest possible fracking
My Panhandle
Taylor Smith

Concern is growing about fracking in Calhoun County. About 30 people attended a rally Tuesday afternoon at Highway 20 boat landing on the Chipola River. They were showing their support for a fracking ban.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Environmentalists hold Toxic Tea Party to protest fracking Group leaders said their focus is getting the ODNR to close down the injection well in Vienna
WKBN


VIENNA TWP., Ohio (WKBN) – Environmentalists made several stops Tuesday to protest natural gas fracking in Ohio. Frack-Free Mahoning Valley held an anti-fracking “Toxic Tea Party” in Vienna Township.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Parts of the Valley rally in national protest against fracking
WFMJ


YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - Protesters in the Valley joined 16 states and the District of Columbia in a national rally against fracking. Groups rallied at fracking sites in Niles, New Castle and Vienna. They also gathered at Federal Square in downtown Youngstown.   [Full Story]

Jun 7, 2016
Most natural gas production growth is expected to come from shale gas and tight oil plays
Oil Voice


The growth in total U.S. dry natural gas production projected in the Annual Energy Outlook 2016 (AEO2016) Reference case results mostly from increased development of shale gas and tight oil plays. Natural gas resources in tight sandstone and carbonate formations (often referred to as tight gas) also contribute to the growth to a lesser extent, while production from other sources of natural gas such as offshore, Alaska, and coalbed methane remains relatively steady or declines.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
Energy bill prospects dim in dispute over drilling, drought
Seattle Times
Matthew Daly

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional efforts to approve the first major energy bill in nearly a decade are in jeopardy amid a partisan dispute over oil drilling, water for drought-stricken California and potential rollback of protections for the gray wolf and other wildlife.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
Don’t frack the rich? Comment puts focus on environmental justice
State Impact PA
Marie Cusick

At a recent legal forum in Harrisburg, a prominent natural gas industry executive suggested his company tries to avoid drilling near rich people. “I was infuriated when I heard it,” says Patrick Grenter, of the environmental advocacy group, the Center for Coalfield Justice. ”I was sitting with some colleagues and I said to them, ‘Did he really just say that?’”   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
Will Norway Ban Sales of Gas-Powered Cars by 2025?
EcoWatch
Climate Nexus

Norway’s four leading political parties have reportedly reached an agreement to ban the sale of all gasoline-powered cars by 2025, according to Norwegian Liberal Party MP Ola Elverstuen. “After 2025 new private cars, buses and light commercial vehicles will be zero-emission vehicles. By 2030, new heavier vans, 75 percent of new long-distance buses, 50 percent of new trucks will be zero emission vehicles,” he said.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
FAA rules not likely to impact Pittsburgh airport drilling
Pittsburgh Business Times
Paul J. Gough

New guidance from the Federal Aviation Administration on drilling for oil and natural gas at airports nationwide isn’t expected to alter the course at Pittsburgh International Airport property.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
ANOTHER FRACKING MELODRAMA
Spiked
James Woudhuysen

or the first time, American scientists have published a paper showing that wastewater from a shale-gas well and a coalbed methane site, disposed of by injecting it into a deep well, has reached a surface stream. This has led the UK group Frack Off to claim that the ‘favoured method of frack-waste disposal [is] causing environmental harm’.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
I Wrote a Book the Fracking Industry Doesn't Want You to Read Wenonah Hauter reflects on her new book, Frackopoly.
Food and Water Watch
Wenonah Hauter

My new book, Frackopoly: The Battle for the Future of Energy and the Environment will be released this week and I want to tell you why I wrote it. In the 1990s, I worked on a project to promote renewable energy. Even then, renewables were ready. They were cost-effective and along with energy efficiency technologies, we were poised to make the transition.  [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
Fracking Health Study Warns of Exploding Showerheads
Earthworks
Aaron Mintzes

If you have ever seen the film Psycho, you understand vulnerability in the shower. Imagine waking up in the morning, still groggy from last night’s sleep, you waddle over to the shower, remove your clothes and turn on the faucet. Suddenly, an explosion!   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
Trek Actors Arrested In Fracking Protest
Trek Today
T'Bonz

James Cromwell and J.G. Hertzler were part of a small group protesting salt cavern gas storage. They blocked traffic from entering or leaving the Crestwood compressor station.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
139-square-mile Fracking Plan in Wyoming Prompts Legal Protest Groups Call on BLM to Cancel Massive Fossil Fuel Development That Threatens Climate, Water, Greater Sage Grouse
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

JACKSON, Wyo.— Conservation groups filed a formal administrative protest on Friday challenging a massive Bureau of Land Management plan to auction off 139 square miles of publicly owned fossil fuels in Wyoming on Aug. 2. Most of the area, about 100 square miles, is located in habitat for imperiled greater sage grouse. The protest calls for canceling the auction entirely.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
Anti-fracking group plans protest event
News and Sentinel


COOLVILLE - Torch CAN DO is hosting a "Toxic Tea Party" near the large rest area on U.S. 50 just past Coolville at noon Tuesday. Many of the group members, who are opposed to the dumping of fracking waste in Athens County injection wells, are dressing in "Alice in Wonderland" attire. The group is trying to raise awareness about the fracking issues.   [Full Story]

Jun 6, 2016
House Could Vote At Any Time To Kill Entire Drilling Reg Package Thru June 13
PA Environment Digest


The House has through June 13 to vote on House Concurrent Regulatory Review Resolution #1 to kill DEP’s final conventional Chapter 78 and unconventional (Marcellus Shale) Chapter 78a drilling regulations (assuming it does not add any additional session days, voting or non-voting).   [Full Story]

Jun 5, 2016
Oil Train Derails in Columbia River Gorge, Rally Calls for Ban on ‘Bomb Trains’
EcoWatch
Columbia Riverkeeper

A unit train carrying crude oil derailed near Mosier, Oregon, Friday. Mosier schools were evacuated and a large black plume of smoke filled the sky with visible flames.   [Full Story]

Jun 5, 2016
Fear of climate change leads Scottish Parliament to vote for fracking ban
The Rebel
Holly Nicholas

The Scottish parliament has voted in favour of a ban on fracking. It’s not binding, but it’s a step further in the direction of keeping fossil fuels in the ground and implementing a green energy strategy.   [Full Story]

Jun 5, 2016
Sanders Trumps Clinton on the Environment and Climate Change
TeleSurTV
Adriana Maestas Opinion

Will Californians vote their conscience at the Democratic primary Tuesday when it comes to the environment? The League of Conservation Voters, an organization that works to turn environmental values into national, state, and local priorities, issues an environmental scorecard that provides factual information about the environmental legislation considered by members of Congress. The National Environmental Scorecard represents the consensus of experts from about 20 environmental and conservation organizations that have examined key votes taken by congressional representatives. Bernie Sanders received a perfect score from the League of Conservation Voters for his environmental voting record in 2015, and his lifetime score is 95 percent. Hillary Clinton was not in office in 2015, so she doesn’t have a score for last year, but her lifetime score from the League of Conservation Voters is 82%.  [Full Story]

Jun 4, 2016
Agricultural Soil Impacted by Fracking Chemical Spills
Green Optimistic
Courtney Lepping

Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) chemicals sometimes end up where they’re not supposed to be: in agricultural soil. Toxic biocides, surfactants, corrosion inhibitors, and slicking agents are some of many types of chemicals used to extract oil and gas from shale and rock. The chemicals aid in extraction, but what happens after a spill?   [Full Story]

Jun 4, 2016
Sanders, Clinton fight for green vote in tight Calif. race
The Hill


Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton are both hoping green voters will put them over the top as they near the end of a tight California primary fight. Clinton this week locked up two key endorsements — from an environmental group and Gov. Jerry Brown (D) — both thanks to her positions on environmental issues. Sanders, meanwhile, is taking his environmental message directly to California voters. He's endorsed local efforts to block new fracking operations, an issue where he argues Clinton is weak, and pushed her on other initiatives dear to greens.  [Full Story]

Jun 4, 2016
The science on fracking isn’t junk
Caller Times
Luke Metzger Opinion

The head of the Texas Oil & Gas Association thinks that any study pointing out the health effects and dangers of fracking and oil refining is "junk science" ("Let real facts govern energy," Caller-Times, May 29). Surprised? Neither are we.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Arkansas River pipeline blowout occurred on Sunday morning, cause still unknown
Arkansas Times
Benjamin Hardy

Based on eyewitness accounts, it appears the rupture of the auxiliary Texas Eastern Pipeline used to transport natural gas across the Arkansas River occurred around 9:40 a.m. on the morning of Sunday, May 31. However, neither the owner of the pipeline — Houston-based Spectra Energy — nor the U.S. Coast Guard became aware of the incident until sometime Monday, June 1, when Jeffrey Sand Company in North Little Rock called the energy company to complain about damage to a towboat it owns, the Chris M.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Pinellas County Commission to consider fracking ban Tuesday
Tampa Bay Times
Tracey McManus

On the heels of a failed state bill that would have authorized fracking in Florida and prevented local governments from regulating it, the Pinellas County Commission on Tuesday will consider banning the practice countywide.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Chile environmental watchdog probes GeoPark for illegal fracking
Reuters


Chile's SMA environmental regulator said on Friday it was investigating Latin America-focused oil and gas explorer GeoPark Ltd for alleged violations, including fracking activities without having the necessary permits.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Activists target fracking waste on Tuesday's action day
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

Ohio, June 2, 2016 – Even though unconventional fracking currently appears to be experiencing a shale bust, the toxic fracking waste problem is still here and getting worse as millions of gallons and tons of fracking waste is constantly being created, according to groups organizing a National Day of Action to be held on June 7, 2016.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Pennsylvania group challenges fracking permit process
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

HICKORY, Pa. (June 2, 2016) – PennFuture has filed a legal challenge to the zoning ordinance in Mount Pleasant Township, Washington County arguing that it is constitutionally invalid because it allows industrial gas drilling across all zoned districts.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Bomb Train Hits Oregon Community as Feared Derailment Comes to Pass
Common Dreams
Jon Queally

This story is developing and may be updated... A fire is burning and large plume of smoke is rising after a train carrying oil derailed not far from the Columbia River in the town of Mosier, Oregon on Friday. OregonLive.com reports: A multi-car oil train derailment Friday in the Columbia River Gorge near Mosier sent up a massive plume of black smoke and stoked long-standing fears about the risks of hauling crude oil through one of the Pacific Northwest's most renowned landmarks.  [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
As California Goes, So Goes the Planet
EcoWatch
Josh Fox

We need democracy like we need water. California primary voters must choose Bernie Sanders or the state will continue to experience a serious drought of both. Despite California’s claims to be an environmental leader, its government has been co-opted by the oil and gas industry and its citizens and climate are suffering. Gov. Brown has turned a blind eye to poor and Latino communities living next to polluting fracking wells and fracking wastewater being used to irrigate crops.  [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Monterey County: Anti-fracking measure qualifies for November ballot
Mercury News
Paul Rogers

The move to ban fracking in California is picking up new momentum, as a measure to prohibit not only the controversial oil-extraction technique but all new oil drilling in Monterey County has qualified for the November ballot. The Board of Supervisors in Monterey County -- California's fourth-largest oil-producing county -- voted late Wednesday to place the measure on the ballot after elections officials verified that environmentalists had turned in 12,187 valid signatures, easily exceeding the required 7,391.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
New Federal Report Shows Dimock Water Was Unsafe to Drink After All
EcoWatch
Sharon Kelly

Back in 2012, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) made a startling announcement, shaking up the battle over fracking in one of the nation’s highest-profile cases where drillers were suspected to have caused water contamination. Now, a newly published report by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), part of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), puts EPA’s testing results into an entirely new light. The water was not safe to drink after all, the ATSDR concluded, after a lengthy review of the same water testing results that EPA used back in 2012.   [Full Story]

Jun 3, 2016
Bomb Train Hits Oregon Community as Feared Derailment Comes to Pass
Common Dreams
by Jon Queally, staff writer

This story is developing and may be updated... A fire is burning and large plume of smoke is rising after a train carrying oil derailed not far from the Columbia River in the town of Mosier, Oregon on Friday. OregonLive.com reports: A multi-car oil train derailment Friday in the Columbia River Gorge near Mosier sent up a massive plume of black smoke and stoked long-standing fears about the risks of hauling crude oil through one of the Pacific Northwest's most renowned landmarks. One to two cars were on fire -- part of a train hauling eight cars, authorities said. It's not clear how many cars derailed. Photos showed at least seven cars off the tracks. There were no immediate reports of injuries.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Fracking ban, solid waste bills scheduled for senate debate
WWLP
Katie Lannan

BOSTON (STATE HOUSE) – Two recycling bills and legislation calling for a 10-year ban on hydraulic fracturing in Massachusetts are on tap for Senate consideration next week.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
IOGCC Representatives Spout Climate Denial at ExxonMobil-Funded Meeting
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

At the opening session of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC)'s recent annual business meeting held in Denver, Colorado, the commission's Nebraska state representative Bill Sydow was closing up at the horseshoe-shaped roundtable by making a few heads turn. “I spent Thanksgiving in Chicago with my daughter and her two friends and I'm talking about climate change and global warming and I'm not a skeptic, I'm a denier” stated Sydow, the director of Nebraska's Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, flanked by dozens of IOGCC state representatives at the mid-May meeting. “And so I'm talking to these two kids and they're like 'What are you talking about?' They have never heard another side to the issue.”  [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
AG won’t yield climate change documents
Ithaca Journal
MICHAEL VIRTANEN

ALBANY — New York’s attorney general has refused to send requested documents about his investigation into Exxon Mobil to a congressional committee, saying Congress lacks jurisdiction over state law enforcement. Attorney General Eric Schneiderman told Republican U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith, a Texan who chairs the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, that his letter request May 18 was based on “incorrect statements” about what he’s doing and “raises serious constitutional concerns.”  [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Tactical Escalation at FERC Brings Response
Future Hope
Ted Glick

In the 1970’s I was active with an Anti-Displacement Committee group in downtown Brooklyn, NY. We worked with tenants who were facing pressures, some of them very intense, from unscrupulous landlords trying to force the tenants out so they could jack up the rents or go coop in the gentrifying area where I lived. Several times we successfully used a particular tactic to fight them: demonstrating at the home or public office of the landlord, alerting his neighbors to what he was doing. Once we picketed in sub-freezing weather outside the storefront office of a landlord who was not providing heat or hot water to one of his buildings. Another time we took a busload of people from Brooklyn to Stamford, Ct. to the estate of a very rich landlord who was brutally forcing tenants out of a large apartment building. When we arrived, 40 of us walked down the driveway to his home, rang his bell, and when no one answered we plastered his house and his personal tennis court with leaflets and signs. And once we called the home phone number of a landlord not providing heat and hot water, telling him that if he didn’t provide those services within 24 hours, we would distribute leaflets up and down his block. In all three cases the tactic worked. Heat and hot water was provided, and the remaining tenants in the building being emptied were offered reasonable financial settlements in return for agreeing to move. Though not exactly a victory, it was pretty much the best that could be hoped for given the particular situation.  [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Regulator beefing up efforts to monitor fracking related earthquakes
inews880
Shelby Thorn

B.C.’s oil and gas regulator is ramping up efforts to monitor earthquakes related to hydraulic fracturing.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Groningen calls for parliamentary inquiry into gas drilling crisis
Dutch News


Groningen’s provincial government has called on parliament to launch an inquiry into natural gas extraction from under the province. ... The Dutch safety board said in a report last year that the economic affairs ministry, drilling company NAM and the Dutch mining body ignored safety concerns in their pursuit of profit.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
FERC accepts gas-electric reliability measures in California
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) today accepted interim measures to address the limited operability of the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility that could affect reliability and market operations in the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) grid this summer.  [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Anti-fracking ballot measure would ban drilling across Colorado, state maps confirm
Complete Colorado
Simon Lomax

Now, state officials have released a report and a series of maps confirming the devastating impact of the anti-fracking agenda in Colorado if it ever becomes law. Just one of these ballot measures, which would prohibit oil and natural gas development within 2,500 feet of any occupied buildings or “areas of special concern,” effectively bans drilling across the state.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Feds Find Offshore Fracking in the Pacific Would Have No ‘Significant’ Environmental Impact
EcoWatch
Climate Nexus

Reactions are growing after a recent joint study by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. It found hydraulic fracking off the coast of California poses no “significant” environmental impact. The decision lifts a moratorium triggered earlier this year by a lawsuit from the Center for Biological Diversity. The group said it is considering other legal options to challenge the decision.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Scottish Parliament Passes Motion in Support of Outright Fracking Ban
EcoWatch
Deirdre Fulton

The Scottish Parliament on Wednesday narrowly passed a motion in support of an outright fracking ban, setting up a potential showdown over the controversial fossil fuels extraction method.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Sanders Touts Fracking Ban as Clinton Pushes Renewables Plan Just Days Before California Primary
EcoWatch
Lorraine Chow

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are ramping up their green bona fides before the Golden State’s crucial Democratic primary Tuesday. The Democratic presidential candidates recently elaborated their national energy plans, with Sanders calling for a nationwide ban on fracking and Clinton pledging to use federal lands to enable the nation’s transition to more renewable energy.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Fracking ban makes fall ballot, supervisors bypass impact studies
Monterey Herald
Jim Johnson

Salinas >> Reversing course on conducting a series of impact studies, the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday agreed to place a proposed ban on hydraulic fracturing and other oil and gas well stimulation techniques on the fall ballot.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Portland Joins Towns Banning Fracking Waste
Harford Courant
Gregory B Hladky

Portland is now the fourth Connecticut community to ban any use of the chemical wastes from hydraulic fracturing – also known as fracking – within its borders. Fracking is a controversial method of extracting natural gas.  [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Planning Panel Sends Anti-Fracking Ordinance to Board of Supervisors
The Independent


The Alameda County Planning Commission has sent a recommendation to the Board of Supervisors to adopt the text of a proposed anti-fracking ordinance. The county has been working on the ordinance for two years. The supervisors are expected to consider the draft ordinance in July.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Fracking advocates weigh suing EPA over climate regs
Washington Examiner
John Siciliano

The latest piece in President Obama's climate agenda soon could become the next target for major legal action, said a senior official with a trade group representing oil and gas producers in the West. The Western Energy Alliance is "exploring litigation" over the Environmental Protection Agency's methane reduction rules for new oil and gas fracking wells, said Kathleen Sgemma, vice president for federal affairs and communications for the group.   [Full Story]

Jun 2, 2016
Scottish Parliament votes for total fracking ban
Independent
Jon Stone

The Scottish Parliament has voted to support a ban on fracking north of the border. Labour, the Green Party and the Liberal Democrats joined forces to vote for the ban, with the Conservatives voting against it. The Scottish National Party, which currently runs a minority government in Scotland abstained on the issue.  [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
What happens to hydraulic fracturing wastewater on cropland
Science Daily


The use of hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," has grown rapidly in the U.S. over the past 15 years -- but concerns persist that the oil and gas extraction method could harm the environment and people's health. To better understand its potential effects, scientists simulated what would happen to the wastewater produced by the technique after a spill. They published their findings in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology. This spring, the U.S. Energy Information Administration estimated that hydraulic fracturing accounts for two-thirds of the country's natural gas production. Customers have benefited from lower gas bills, but the technique's growth comes with some risks. The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission received reports of 838 spills that released a total of more than 660,000 gallons of fluids associated with fracking in 2014. Since hydraulic fracturing and, potentially, any associated spills often occur near agricultural land, Jens Blotevogel, Thomas Borch and colleagues wanted to find out whether compounds in the wastewater biodegrade or stick around in the soil where they might be taken up by crops.  [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Millennium not stopping progress; Compressor station will not await health study
River Reporter
Fritz Mayer

ELDRED, NY — Millennium Pipeline Company is not doing any physical preparation work for its proposed compressor station in Eldred just now. But that’s not because it’s waiting for the completion of a health study proposed by activists and local government officials, according to Millennium representative Michelle Hook. It’s because the company first needs to finish filing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and has not received the necessary permits to begin work. Millennium has agreed to pay for the health study, which is being initiated by the Sullivan County Legislature, but does not plan to alter its schedule in relation to it. Hook wrote in an email, “While the study is being done we will continue to submit paperwork to the FERC and pursue all necessary certificates. Halting this process at this juncture isn’t possible. Once we pre-filed for this project the clock started, and we have a timeline we have to adhere to. In addition, the compressor is one piece of a four-part project that is necessary, and those other pieces cannot be put on hold and the entire project must be submitted to FERC as one.  [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
CSU team calls for more study of fracking spills
Coloradoan
Jacy Marmaduke

A team of CSU researchers wanted to find out how long chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing remain in soil after being spilled and whether certain chemical combinations have different effects. Their findings, they say, underscore the need for more research on fracking and other chemical spills, especially those on or near agricultural land.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Fracking 2016: Obama Administration Approves Drilling Off The Coast Of California
International Business Times
Clark Mindock

Fracking companies operating off the coast of California cleared a major hurdle Tuesday when two federal agencies determined that the practice has no significant impact on the human environment. The decision lifts a moratorium that had been placed on hydraulic fracturing this year after an environmental group filed a lawsuit questioning the drilling practice.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Group asks court for more time to put fracking ban on Michigan ballot
Michigan Radio
Steve Carmody

Activists trying to ban fracking in Michigan are asking a court to give them more time to put the issue on the ballot.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Bernie Sanders vows to ban fracking in Monterey County
KION
Matt Sizemore and Barry Brown

Making a third stop on his Central Coast tour in Spreckels, presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders wasn't in rally-mode on Wednesday. But he did have a clear message to voters when it comes to protecting Monterey County. "And I hope very much that Monterey County will continue the momentum that makes it clear that fracking is not safe, and is not what we need for our kids," Sanders said.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Oil and Gas Industry Building War Chest to Fight Ballot Initiatives
Public News Service


DENVER - The oil and gas industry is gearing up to defeat several initiatives headed toward the November ballot that would allow restrictions on fracking. A coalition of industry, business groups and elected officials called Protecting Colorado's Environment, Economy and Energy Independence has formed to block efforts such as Initiative 40, which would allow local control over drilling. Lafayette city councilwoman Merrily Mazza supports the measure.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
What happens to hydraulic fracturing wastewater on cropland
EurekaAlert!
American Chemical Society

The use of hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," has grown rapidly in the U.S. over the past 15 years -- but concerns persist that the oil and gas extraction method could harm the environment and people's health. To better understand its potential effects, scientists simulated what would happen to the wastewater produced by the technique after a spill. They published their findings in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Sanders challenges White House and DNC over fracking
Washington Post
David Weigel

SPRECKELS, Calif. -- Just days after two federal agencies seemed to clear the way for offshore fracking in the Pacific Ocean, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) called on it to stop.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Ohio.com News Local News Munroe Falls trying to limit oil and gas drilling based on city’s zoning ordinance in new court fight
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

The city has filed a new lawsuit against Beck Energy Corp. and South Carolina-based Sonoco Products Co. for a proposed oil and gas well that the city says is illegal because of Munroe Falls zoning.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
When It Comes To Money, Colorado's Possible Ballot Fight Over Fracking Is Lopsided
KUNC
Dan Boyce

The state's oil and gas industry is preparing for a potential battle at the ballot box against a much less well-funded foe. Supporters of four different ballot measures that seek to restrict drilling are gathering signatures and have raised just tens of thousands of dollars, compared to the more than $6 million that one opposition group has amassed for the fight.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Renewable Energy Surges to Record-Breaking Levels Around the World
EcoWatch
Andy Rowell

The renewable revolution is gathering apace according to new research. Last year was an “extraordinary” record year for the sector, with “the largest global capacity additions seen to date.” An estimated 147 gigawatts of renewable power capacity was added in 2015, according to the annual report of REN21, the renewables policy organization made up of energy experts, NGOs and governments, which is based in Paris. In total, new installations of renewable power generation capacity rose to 1,848.5 GW globally in 2015, underlying the fact I made in yesterday’s blog that Big Oil’s demise might come sooner rather than later, in part due to the renewable revolution. Most importantly, slowly but surely every year, renewables are becoming more cost competitive with fossil fuels. “I’ve been working in this sector for 20 years and the economic case is now fully there,” said Christine Lins, the executive secretary of REN21: “The fact that we had 147GW of capacity, mainly of wind and solar is a clear indication that these technologies are cost competitive (with fossil fuels).” Lins also points out that this record renewable growth has been achieved despite huge subsidies to fossil fuels. “What is truly remarkable about these results is that they were achieved at a time when fossil fuel prices were at historic lows and renewables remained at a significant disadvantage in terms of government subsidies,” she said in a statement. Lins continued: “For every dollar spent boosting renewables, nearly four dollars were spent to maintain our dependence on fossil fuels.” Most worrying for Big Oil is that this is the largest ever annual increase in installed clean capacity ever. As if to emphazise the point the amount spent on renewables was double that spent on new coal and gas-fired power plants. In total, including large hydro projects, new investment was an estimated $328.9 billion, echoing research by Bloomberg New Energy Finance from earlier in the year which put clean energy investment a fraction higher at $329.3 billion. More than 8 million people are now employed in the sector.  [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
1.1 GW Of New Solar Capacity Being Developed In Pakistan
Clean Technica
Saurabh Mahapatra

Pakistan is expected to see a sharp jump in operational solar PV capacity over the next few years, as several project developers have signed pacts to set up projects. The Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) has reported that as many as 35 solar PV power projects are currently at various stages of development. These projects will have a cumulative installed capacity of 1,111 MW. The largest of these projects will come up at the Quaid-e-Azam solar power park. The project currently has 100 MW of operational capacity. Apollo Solar Pakistan, Crest Energy Pakistan, and Best Green Energy Pakistan are working on 100 MW of solar capacity each. These projects are expected to be commissioned by the end of this year. The total capacity of the Quaid-e-Azam solar park will thus increase to 400 MW against a planned capacity of 1,000 MW. Six other developers have been issued letters of support for the development of projects with a cumulative capacity of 47.84 MW. The ADEB has also issued letters of intent for the development of 25 projects with a combined generation capacity of 663 MW. These projects are expected to be operational by 2018. Additionally, the government of Punjab province has also issued letters of intent for projects with 600 MW of capacity, of which 300 MW of capacity has already secured financing. Several European and Chinese companies have already invested in Pakistan’s renewable energy market. Foreign investors poured over $3 billion into the renewable energy sector in Pakistan over the last year.  [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Sanders hits Clinton on fracking in California
The Hill
Devin Henryy

Bernie Sanders on Wednesday promised to enact a national ban on fracking if he is president, hitting Hillary Clinton as weak on the issue just days before California's critical primary.  [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Judge strikes down suit against fracking opponents
State Impact PA
Jon Hurdle

A Pennsylvania judge has dismissed an attempt by a group of natural gas leaseholders seeking to block environmentalists’ objections to a township’s plans to open itself up to gas drilling.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Federal Agencies Find That Fracking In The Pacific Would Have No ‘Significant’ Environmental Impacts
Think Progress
Natasha Geiling

On Friday, both the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) jointly released an environmental study that looked at the impact of hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — on marine ecosystems. The report analyzed 23 offshore fracking operations that operated in California between 1982 and 2014, and found that the operations have a minimal impact on the quality of water and ocean health. To the fossil fuel industry, this signals a return to normalcy, as both the BOEM and BSEE will resume approval of offshore fracking permits that they had temporarily suspended while the environmental study was being conducted.   [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
METHANE: A flash fire, third-degree burns and an investigation without end
E & E Newswire
Mike Soraghan

PERRIN, Texas -- On a sunny Saturday afternoon, Cody Murray's water well exploded in flames. Natural gas unexpectedly flowed up with the water and ignited when a switch flipped in the pump house where he stood. It turned the air to fire. Murray, a sturdy middle-aged rancher, oil worker and father of two, suffered second- and third-degree burns over nearly a quarter of his body. His father and 4-year-old daughter were also burned in the August 2014 flash fire.  [Full Story]

Jun 1, 2016
Environmentalists Consider Lawsuit After Feds Approve Fracking Off California Coast
Daily Caller
Andrew Follett

An environmental group is considering legal action after a pair of federal agencies concluded hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, off the coast of California doesn’t harm the environment. The Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) is considering more lawsuits to block offshore fracking in California and directly blames the Obama administration for the analysis.   [Full Story]

May 31, 2016
Environmentalists Call Fracking Assessment Flawed Offshore fracking to resume in Federal waters
KEYT
Tracy Lehr

An assessment by the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Management (BOEM) and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), ended a court-ordered settlement and paved the way for the Obama administration to allow oil companies to resume fracking in Federal waters.... Attorney Maggie Hall, with the Environmental Defense Center, calls the government analysis flawed "We fundamentally disagree with the analysis. There are significant impacts we are concerned about, impacts to the marine environment, air quality and water quality when using practices out in the marine environment. At this point they should go back to the drawing board and do a comprehensive review of the impacts," said Hall.   [Full Story]

May 31, 2016
Newfoundland Fracking Report Says There Are Too Many Unknowns
Huffington Post
Sue Bailey

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. — There are too many science, technology and risk-assessment gaps to green-light fracking in western Newfoundland, says a panel that studied the contentious oil-extraction process.  [Full Story]

May 31, 2016
Anti-fracking initiative qualifies for November ballot
KION
Erika Mahoney

The Monterey County anti-fracking initiative received enough validated signatures to qualify for the November 2016 ballot. The Monterey County Registrar of Voters will deliver the news to the Monterey County Board of Supervisors on June 1. Supervisors will then decide whether to put the initiative on the ballot or adopt it themselves.  [Full Story]

May 31, 2016
Editorial: Fracking ban makes more sense than the alternative
Chicoer
Editorial

We’re not sure a ban on hydraulic fracturing is necessary in Butte County. A lot of political capital could be spent trying to outlaw every boogeyman that’s out there. That said, a citizen initiative has resulted in the question going to county voters on June 7, so we all have to answer a straightforward question: Should fracking be banned in Butte County?   [Full Story]

May 31, 2016
Who Bears the Most Risk From Fracking?
New York Times
Editorial

Say this for John Quigley, until a few days ago the state of Pennsylvania’s top environmental officer. With a profanity-laced email that played a role in his resignation he put the dangers of hydraulic fracturing front and center in the public consciousness. Mr. Quigley had backed tough new updates in state rules governing drilling for natural gas. But after legislators voted them down, he blistered environmentalists for failing to support the cause.   [Full Story]

May 31, 2016
Judge dismisses lawsuit filed by developer, landowners against Middlesex fracking opponents
TribLive
Mathew Santoni

A Butler County judge has dismissed the second lawsuit a developer and 13 landowners had filed against Middlesex residents and non-profits opposed to fracking, the defendants announced Tuesday.   [Full Story]

May 30, 2016
Clinton Actively Promoted Fracking as Secretary of State
The Real News
Sharmini Peries

9 Minute Audio Report  [Full Story]

May 29, 2016
How fracking can contribute to climate change Leakage of natural gas from drilling and pipework means more methane is entering the atmosphere
The Guardian
Gary Fuller

One of the justifications for fracking is the use of natural gas as a bridging fuel between coal and a low-carbon future. However natural gas is mostly methane, which has strong global warming impacts in its own right. Natural gas therefore only provides climate benefits over coal if the leakage is no more than 2-3%.   [Full Story]

May 29, 2016
Obama Administration Approves Resumption of CA Offshore Fracking
Indy Bay
Dan Bacher

Miyoko Sakashita, director of the Center for Biological Diversity’s Oceans program, vigorously disagreed with the agencies’ finding of “no significant impact” — and warned they may file new litigation to halt offshore fracking.   [Full Story]

May 29, 2016
Sanders visits Delano home of UFW, calls for fracking ban to improve local water quality
Bakersfield.com
John Cox

Asked what he would do to address poor water quality in local cases not associated with pesticide contamination, Sanders reiterated his support for a nationwide ban on fracking, the controversial oil well stimulation technique also known as hydraulic fracturing. He additionally called for more work to slow climate change and conserve water during the drought as ways to improve local drinking water.   [Full Story]

May 29, 2016
2 federal agencies open fracking door for California
RT


Fracking is getting a new lease on life in oil-rich California, much to the dismay of environmental campaigners. Two federal agencies just released reports on offshore drilling there, and found “no significant risk to the environment.”  [Full Story]

May 29, 2016
Women lead the call to arms as anti-fracking fight intensifies Female opposition to drilling soars as mothers unite in desire to safeguard children’s future
The Guardian
John Vidal

“We are ready for them,” said Tina Louise Rothery. “It has been a long battle but we have been ready for a confrontation for a long time.” Rothery is one of a growing group of women at the forefront of opposition to fracking. Of the 250 anti-fracking community groups that have sprung up in Britain in the past few years, very many are led, or strongly backed, by women, who say they have been outraged at plans to risk people’s health by exploiting the countryside for shale gas.   [Full Story]

May 28, 2016
Agency: Measure would put most of state off-limits to wells Passage of ballot measure would devastate economy, report says
Durango Herald
Dan Elliott

DENVER – A proposal to require new oil and gas wells to be at least 2,500 feet from homes and schools in Colorado would leave 90 percent of the state off-limits to future drilling, regulators said Friday.   [Full Story]

May 28, 2016
Marcellus gas drillers challenge Kathleen Kane's antitrust tactics
PennLive
John Beauge

Two major players in Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling have accused Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane of attempting to litigate federal antitrust claims in state court.   [Full Story]

May 28, 2016
Feds open door to Pacific coast fracking
Bend Bulletin
Rob Nikolewski

SAN DIEGO — An environmental assessment from two federal agencies released Friday determined that fracking off the coast of California causes no significant impact, thus lifting a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing that was instituted earlier this year.   [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
Obama Administration OKs Offshore Fracking in California
Common Dreams


LOS ANGELES - The Obama administration today finalized plans to allow oil companies to resume offshore fracking and dumping fracking chemicals mixed with wastewater in California’s wildlife-rich Santa Barbara Channel. Today’s announcement from the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement ends a court-ordered settlement that placed a moratorium on offshore fracking and acidizing in federal waters off California. “The Obama administration is once again putting California’s beautiful coast in the oil industry’s crosshairs,” said Miyoko Sakashita, director of the Center for Biological Diversity’s Oceans program. “Our beaches and wildlife face a renewed threat from fracking chemicals and oil spills. New legal action may be the only way to get federal officials to do their jobs and protect our ocean from offshore fracking.”  [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
Crestwood to wait for state on natural gas storage
Press & Sun Bulletin
Tom Wilber

Even with a renewed federal permit in hand, the fate of Crestwood Midstream Partner’s bid to store natural gas in salt caverns by Seneca Lake rests largely with state officials. And the outlook is as murky as ever. With a two-year federal permit for the project on the verge of expiration, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission granted Crestwood a two-year extension on May 16.  [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
A Challenge to Donald Trump’s Energy Claims: Economic Reality
The New York Times
CORAL DAVENPORT

WASHINGTON — In his pledge to aggressively expand American oil and gas production, and his framing of that push as a salvation for the nation’s economic and fiscal health, Donald J. Trump is following in the footsteps of decades of Republican politicians. But in a market where domestic oil production is already higher than it has been in 40 years, and natural gas production is at a historic high, those proposals have run up against a major problem: the global economy.  [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
Donald Trump’s Energy Plan: More Fossil Fuels and Fewer Rules
The New York Times
ASHLEY PARKER and CORAL DAVENPORT

BISMARCK, N.D. — Donald J. Trump traveled Thursday to the heart of America’s oil and gas boom, where he called for more fossil fuel drilling and fewer environmental regulations while vowing to “cancel the Paris climate agreement,” the 2015 accord committing nearly every nation to taking action to curb climate change. Laying out his positions on energy and the environment at an oil industry conference in North Dakota, he vowed to rescind President Obama’s signature climate change rules and revive construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, which would bring petroleum from Canada’s oil sands to Gulf Coast refineries.  [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
The biggest exaggerations in Trump’s energy plans
Politico
ANDREW RESTUCCIA

Donald Trump's energy speech in Bismarck, N.D. on Thursday was brimming with big promises — and big exaggerations. Amid pledges to eliminate a slew of environmental regulations and dramatically expand fossil fuel development, Trump tossed out a few inaccurate statistics, falsely accused President Barack Obama of wanting to end oil and gas development in the U.S. and showed an overly simplistic understanding of world oil markets.   [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
Donald Trump's energy plan: Regulate less, drill more
CNN
Matt Egan

Donald Trump has a simple formula to get America's energy industry back on its feet: regulate less and start drilling a lot more for oil and gas. In his first in-depth speech about energy policy, Trump on Thursday promised to make American energy "dominance" a strategic economic and foreign policy goal of the U.S.   [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
Feds clear California offshore fracking
The Hill
Timothy Cama

Federal regulators ruled Friday that offshore hydraulic fracturing has no “significant” environmental impact off California’s coast. The two agencies responsible for offshore drilling, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), finalized a pair of environmental study documents Friday regarding the impact findings.   [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
Fracking go-ahead: What happens next?
BBC News
John Moylan

Plans for fracking in England are being prepared in the wake of the decision made in North Yorkshire earlier this week. Brownfield sites and areas near motorway junctions could be used for future shale gas production. On Monday North Yorkshire County Council approved an application by Third Energy to frack a well near the village of Kirby Misperton in Ryedale.  [Full Story]

May 27, 2016
Anti-fracking protesters celebrate indefinite moratorium
CBC News
Bobbi-Jean MacKinnon

Anti-fracking protesters across New Brunswick are celebrating after Friday's announcement the provincial government has extended a hydraulic fracturing moratorium indefinitely. They say they would prefer to see it be permanent, rather than indefinite. Still, they are pleased their fight paid off. "It's a big relief that I don't have to worry about my water," said Willi Nowlan, who was a prominent figure in the anti-fracking campaign in Rexton, where protesters and the RCMP clashed in 2013.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
6 things we learned from Donald Trump's first big energy speech (Spoiler: He really likes fossil fuels.)
VOX
Brad Plumer

When it comes to energy policy, the 2016 presidential election really isn't all that complicated. Hillary Clinton plans to continue President Obama's strategy of pushing down carbon dioxide emissions via regulations. That means using less coal and oil and more wind and solar. Donald Trump, by contrast, doesn't much care about global warming and plans to greatly expand US oil drilling and coal mining — largely by repealing various environmental rules.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
Revealed: Contractors Hired by FERC to Review a New Spectra Energy Pipeline Work for Spectra on a Related Project
DeSmogBlog
Itai Vardi

A contractor hired last year by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to review a proposed gas pipeline by Spectra Energy, had already been working for the company on a related project, a DeSmog investigation has found. Such an alleged conflict of interest suggests that the contractor had a financial stake in approving the project it was hired to review. As part of a formal Pre-Filing Review Process for Spectra Energy’s Atlantic Bridge project, FERC hired in early 2015 a third-party contractor to review the pipeline. A proposed expansion of the company’s existing Algonquin Pipeline carrying fracked gas from Pennsylvania to the Northeast US and Canada, the project involves the construction of several new pipeline segments in New York and New England and a new compressor station in the town of Weymouth, Massachusetts.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
Protesters Blockade Planned Pipeline Site Near Nuclear Plant Outside NYC
EcoWatch
Democracy Now

In Peekskill, New York, just about an hour north of New York City, residents have launched a blockade in efforts to stop the construction of a gas pipeline slated to run only hundreds of feet from the aging Indian Point nuclear power plant.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
Clinton Chasing Votes With Fracking U-Turn
Oil Price
Irina Slav

Leaked emails obtained by The Intercept reveal Hillary Clinton’s multiple stances on fracking—which apparently differ depending on whether we’re talking about fracking on U.S. soil or abroad. At a debate with Bernie Sanders in New York in early April, Hillary Clinton said she doesn’t support fracking, unless certain conditions are met, such as acceptance from the community and full disclosure of the chemicals that will be used in the process of releasing oil and gas from shale rock.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
How Enhanced Technology Is Changing The Oil Industry Part 2: Fracking
Seeking Alpha
Jesse Morre

Part one of this series, found here, covered how technological advancements have altered the world of drilling for oil (NYSEARCA:USO). Reviewing the accelerating efficiency of drilling rigs in the U.S., the article argued why we can expect exploration and development costs for shale oil to continue to decline, and discussed why this has forced Saudi Arabia to alter its oil market strategy. In this, the second part, we will take a look at how fracking and stimulate drilled wells is allowing higher production rates, more ultimately recoverable reserves, and reduced costs through progressively larger and better designed Fracture techniques.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
At Least 19 Arrested During Anti-Fracking Protest in US State of New York
Sputnik News


NEW YORK (Sputnik) — At least 19 people were arrested while protesting a proposal to build additional underground natural gas storage facilities in the US state of New York, a spokesperson for Schuyler County Sheriff’s Office told Sputnik on Thursday.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
Fracking report set for release to public Tuesday
The Western Star
TC Media

As members of the Port au Port/Bay St. George Fracking Awareness Group await the release of a report from the provincial hydraulic fracturing review panel, the group insists there should be a ban on the practice.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
PA GOP Picks Fight with Shapiro over Fracking
Politics PA
Nick Field

After much attention on the Senate contest, the PA GOP has now momentarily shifted their focus to the Attorney General race. Specifically, the Republicans are attacking Democratic nominee Josh Shapiro for comments he made in his speech to the PA Press Club.... The GOP believes that Shapiro’s desire for a “bully pulpit”, along with his past advocacy for fracking accountability, will cause harm to the natural gas industry.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
Oil and Gas Fracking “Toxic Mess”: Lawsuit against US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Global Research
Steve Horn

On May 4, several environmental organizations filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), calling for an end to the regulatory exemption it carved out in the late 1980s for the oil and gas industry with regards to how it handles industrial waste.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
CO Oil and Gas Industry Raises $6 Million To Fight Ballot Measures
Inside Energy
Dan Boyce

A political organization created to fight anti-oil and gas ballot measures in Colorado has raised more than $6 million dollars in the first quarter of 2016.   [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
Trump takes aim at U.S. environmental regulations to boost oil sector
Reuters
Valerie Volcovici

Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, promised on Thursday to roll back some of America's most ambitious environmental policies if elected, actions that he said would revive the ailing U.S. oil and coal industries and bolster national security.  [Full Story]

May 26, 2016
WATER POLLUTION: Federal agency contradicts EPA on contamination in Dimock
E&E Publishing
Mike Soraghan

When U.S. EPA ended its investigation of drilling and drinking water contamination in Dimock, Pa., the agency said the water was safe to drink. Now, another federal agency looking at the same data says it wasn't safe.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Mountaineer NGL Storage to proceed with Ohio facility
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

DENVER, May 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Mountaineer NGL Storage, LLC, announced the conclusion of a successful non-binding open season for its natural gas storage project near Clarington, Ohio. The open season resulted in requests for more than three times the amount of initial planned capacity.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Westchester County protestors arrested after extraction from locked shipping container blocking gas pipeline route
Albany Times Union
Brian Nearing

Two people have been arrested for trespassing after locking themselves into a solar-powered, 20-foot metal shipping container to block the construction of the Spectra Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) pipeline in Peekskill, Westchester County.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Clean-Energy Jobs Surpass Oil Drilling for First Time in U.S.
Bloomberg
Anna Hirtenstein

The number of U.S. jobs in solar energy overtook those in oil and natural gas extraction for the first time last year, helping drive a global surge in employment in the clean-energy business as fossil-fuel companies faltered.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Power plant proposals for Southern California spark an energy debate
Los Angeles Times
Joshua Emerson Smith

A new wave of natural gas power plants planned for Southern California has stoked a high-stakes debate about how best to keep the lights on throughout the region.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Is Fracking for Natural Gas Coming to Erie County?
Erie Reader
Sam Miller

Gov. Tom Wolf says that fracking is coming, and that it can be done safely. Environmental groups say that it is not safe for people, animals, or the environment, and fear its arrival. World leaders say that it must stop, because the future of life on our planet depends on it. Just what is fracking, anyway? It comes from the word “fracturing,” as used in drilling for natural gas in shale layers. Fracturing has been used by drillers for about 80 years now, in vertically drilled wells, to increase the amount of gas released. When the drilling tube reaches the shale layer, a mixture of sand and water is hydraulically pumped into the shale under very high pressure, breaking up the shale. When the pumps are turned off, the sand helps to hold the cracks in the shale open, releasing the gas to flow back up the well pipe. For vertical wells, only a few hundred gallons of water is needed, because the shale layer is usually only about 40 feet thick.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Hire another Quigley at DEP The Pennsylvania oil and gas industry must be reined in and properly regulated
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Nadia Steinzor

Late last week, John Quigley, secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, abruptly resigned. News reports pointed to a controversial email in which Mr. Quigley angrily demanded that environmental groups more boldly defend proposed oil and gas regulations. It didn’t take long for some legislators to accuse Mr. Quigley of governmental impropriety. In the meantime, the email controversy continues to generate media stories.  [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Westchester County protestors arrested after extraction from locked shipping container blocking gas pipeline route
Times Union
Brian Nearing

Two people have been arrested for trespassing after locking themselves into a solar-powered, 20-foot metal shipping container to block the construction of the Spectra Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) pipeline in Peekskill, Westchester County. The two had food and water to last for two weeks, some books and were vowing not to come out. Arrested were Jane Kendall, 65, of New York, and Lee Stewart, a 29-year-old organizer with Beyond Extreme Energy. The AIM project involved about 37 miles of pipeline and related facilities in New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. Most of the pipeline installation will replace existing pipeline with larger diameter pipeline. In New York, the route runs through Rockland, Westchester and Putnam counties.  [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Fracked Gas Isn’t Green or Clean
Eco Watch
Wenonah Hauter

When Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo signed on to the Governors’ Accord for a New Energy Future in February, she touted the state’s investment in renewable energy and green jobs. And, she made clear this was just a start: “More work remains and this accord acknowledges the challenges we face and our commitment to addressing them.” Indeed, more work remains for the governor to provide climate leadership for Rhode Island and the nation. At the very top of the list should be rescinding her support for a controversial fracked gas project in the town of Burrillville. The community has been fighting the euphemistically-named Invenergy “Clear River” power plant facility and now national advocacy groups have joined the call.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
The True Cost of Fracking
Eco Watch
Reynard Loki, AlterNet

Arsenic. Cadmium. Chromium. Radon. Lead. These are just a few of the toxins used in hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking, a controversial drilling process to retrieve oil and natural gas from shale deposits under the surface of the Earth. Concerns about the process have been mounting, as studies have linked it to a host of environmental and public health problems, from increased infant mortality and low birth weight babies to the release of cancer-causing radioactive gas, contamination of drinking water and earthquakes. Fracking also releases methane, which is a far more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide.  [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Exxon "Chose to Mislead": Granddaughter of Former Exxon Climate Scientist
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

Anna Kalinsky, the granddaughter of former Exxon climate scientist James Black, has berated the company for bankrolling climate change denial despite her grandfather's attempts to inform the company of the risks of burning fossil fuels for the global climate. “In 1977 my grandfather was a senior scientist at Exxon. He warned Exxon executives that the world was just a few years away from needing to rethink our energy strategy to prevent destructive climate change,” Kalinsky says. “Instead, Exxon chose to mislead people about the risks of climate change – and continues to mislead people today. The company says they value their scientists and all the work they do, but that’s pretty hard to believe when they continue to fund organizations – both publicly and anonymously – that spread misinformation about the science.”  [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
5 Reasons the New Methane Standards Matter
Huffington Post
Rosaly Byrd

With the new methane standards announced by President Obama in the middle of May, the U.S. moves further towards regulating the largely unchecked natural gas industry. The standards will cut methane emissions from new and modified extraction sites from the oil and gas sector— in particular from hydraulic fracturing or fracking sites that extract natural gas. The standards are a part of President Obama’s strategy to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, specifically reducing methane emissions from this industry by 40 - 45% from 2012 levels by 2025. The new methane standards are expected to reduce 510,000 short tons of methane in 2025, the equivalent of reducing 11 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Bill Shorten says NT Labor's fracking moratorium 'based on best science'
ABC News
Xavier La Canna

Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has offered support for Northern Territory Labor's controversial policy to put a moratorium on gas fracking, saying it is based on "the best science available".   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Federal health review calls compounds in Dimock water a concern
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Laura Legere

Levels of contaminants found in more than two dozen water wells in Dimock Township, Susquehanna County, in 2012 were high enough to affect residents’ health, create a physical hazard or otherwise “make the water unsuitable for drinking” in its raw state, a federal health agency reported Tuesday.   [Full Story]

May 25, 2016
Analysis stage begins at latest Golan drilling site
Jerusalem Post
Michelle Malka Grossman

Afek oil and gas hopes to find out what lies beneath the Golan Heights, as they announced the beginning of the analysis phase for the Ness-2 drilling site, also known as “Deborah’s Well.”   [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Documents: IOGCC-Spawned Loophole Creating Frackquake Crisis Faces Federal Lawsuit
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

On May 4, several environmental organizations filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), calling for an end to the regulatory exemption it carved out in the late 1980s for the oil and gas industry with regards to how it handles industrial waste. That exemption to the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) of 1976, a recent DeSmog investigation showed, was pushed in the forefront almost from day one of RCRA's passage by the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC). IOGCC is a U.S. Congress-chartered interstate compact consisting of U.S. oil and gas producing states, with a membership roll that includes state-level regulators, industry lobbyists and executives.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Burning All Fossil Fuels Would Lead to a 17 C Rise in Arctic Temperatures
EcoWatch
Roz Pidcock

Burning all the fossil fuels we know to exist on Earth could push global temperature an average of 8 C above preindustrial levels, according to new research. The Arctic would bear the brunt of the warming, with temperatures potentially rising 17 C, said the authors.   [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Clinton tried to push fracking on foreign countries, new emails reveal
RT


Though Hillary Clinton is a vocal opponent of fracking in her 2016 presidential campaign, newly leaked emails reveal that she tried to export the practice to other countries during her time as secretary of state. Emails uncovered by The Intercept on Monday show that during Clinton’s tenure at the head of the State Department, she and her close aides worked with private oil and gas companies to promote fracking abroad as a way to drill for oil and gas.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Emails: Clinton tried to export fracking at State
Washington Examiner
KYLE FELDSCHER

Emails from Hillary Clinton's time as secretary of state show she tried to spread the practice of fracking to other countries, although now she is making campaign promises to allow communities to ban the practice. Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is the process of injecting water and other chemicals into layers of shale rock to release oil and natural gas trapped within and is widely credited with sparking a boom in U.S. energy production in the last decade. Clinton was the nation's top diplomat at the time, and emails uncovered by The Intercept show she tried to get other countries to use the same method. The emails show Clinton's State Department touted fracking to foreign diplomats during a trip to Pennsylvania and attempted to pressure Poland into letting U.S. oil companies begin fracking in that country. The push backfired and Poland banned the practice.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
370 Groups Oppose Federal Energy Bill That Would Increase Fracking, Harm Climate
Center for Biological Diversity


WASHINGTON— As the U.S. House this week takes up an amended version of the Senate’s Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2016 (S. 2012), more than 370 organizations urged the Senate to reject provisions in the bill that would encourage oil and gas fracking. The groups delivered a letter today to Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chair Lisa Murkowski and ranking member Maria Cantwell demanding an energy bill that transitions the country to a truly clean, safe, renewable energy future. The groups’ letter criticizes provisions expediting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s approval of liquefied natural gas export terminals. Requiring the commission to undertake expedited reviews of these terminals “undermines the very transparency and prudence that federal actions should be premised on to protect our communities and environment,” the letter states. The groups also opposed the bill because it would require all state and other federal agencies conducting authorizations for these facilities to give deference to FERC. For years, pollution-affected communities across the country have struggled against FERC's rubber-stamping of fracked gas infrastructure projects like pipelines and compressor stations that pose serious health, safety and climate threats to surrounding areas. The Senate’s pending energy bill would further increase FERC’s autonomy.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Plug pulled on pipeline
Daily News
Michael P. Norton STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE

BOSTON — After suspending work in April, Kinder Morgan yesterday fully pulled the plug on its controversial Northeast Energy Direct natural gas pipeline project. In a letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, J. Curtis Moffatt, deputy general counsel at the Kinder Morgan subsidiary Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, notified the agency that the pipeline application was being withdrawn.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Portland schools ditch textbooks that question climate change
The Gurdian
Alison Flood

Schools in Portland, Oregon, have voted to abandon textbooks that “express doubt about the severity of the climate crisis or its root in human activities”. The resolution follows a proposal by environmental groups put to the Portland public schools board, which argued that “it is time for school districts to redefine what it means to educate students for a future of certain climate change”. Stating that “there is overwhelming consensus in the scientific community that the climate crisis is created by human beings”, the proposal said that it was “essential that in their classes and other school activities students probe the causes and consequences of the climate crisis – as well as possible solutions – in developmentally appropriate ways”. In testimony to the board reported by the Portland Tribune, Bill Bigelow, editor of Rethinking Schools magazine, criticised science textbooks’ use of words such as “might”, “may” and “could” when referring to climate change. He quoted the textbook Physical Science as saying that “carbon dioxide emissions from motor vehicles, power plants and other sources, may contribute to global warming”.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
For Trump, denying risks of climate change is a losing stance
The Hill
Bob Ward

Donald Trump and the rest of the Republican Party are in danger of ignoring an important global trend: Politicians who deny the risks of climate change are losing power to those who adopt a less reckless approach to greenhouse gas pollution. The presumptive Republican nominee has taken an extreme and unscientific position on global warming. In March, he told The Washington Post that he is "not a great believer in man-made climate change." And earlier this month, he showed his ignorance of the great determination across the world to cut greenhouse gas emissions when he claimed in an interview with Reuters that "at a minimum" he would, as president, renegotiate the landmark Paris agreement on climate change that was reached between more than 190 countries at a United Nations summit last December.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
NY lawmakers propose codifying renewable energy goals
Washington Times
AP

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - A dozen New York lawmakers have introduced legislation to codify Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s goal of eliminating human-produced greenhouse gas emissions statewide by 2050, replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy. The bill would direct the Department of Environmental Conservation within a year to issue regulations requiring reporting of annual emissions from major sources and establish a registry and reporting system measured in tons of carbon dioxide equivalents. The department would determine the 1990s emissions levels, then require statewide reductions to that same level by 2020, followed by deeper periodic reductions over the next 30 years.  [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Exxon Mobil faces 'change or die' moment on climate
BBC News
Matt McGrath

A significant group of shareholders are seeking to force Exxon Mobil to acknowledge the growing threat from climate change at the company's AGM on Wednesday. These investors want the world's biggest publicly traded oil company to support the goal of a 2C global temperature limit.   [Full Story]

May 24, 2016
Fossil Fuel Investments Growing Riskier for Insurers, Report Warns
Inside Climate News
Zahra Hirjii

With nearly $500 billion invested, a new analysis recommends insurance companies take a harder look at the consequences of climate change and a lower-carbon future.   [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
FERC Called "Biased Against Local Concerns"
Public News Service


CHARLESTON, W. Va. - The federal agency that approves or denies gas pipelines is oriented against the concerns of landowners and communities, according to people working on the issues. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) will decide on the huge pipelines competing to bring natural gas through West Virginia and Virginia to eastern markets. - See more at: http://www.publicnewsservice.org/2016-05-23/energy-policy/ferc-called-biased-against-local-concerns/a52073-1#sthash.jsRc9dNv.dpuf  [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Sioux County landowners argue fracking case in district court
Scottsbluff Star Herald
Irene North

SIDNEY — An appeal to a 2015 decision by the Nebraska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (NOGCC) granting a Colorado company permission to use of an abandoned oil well in Sioux County as a wastewater disposal site was heard Monday in the Cheyenne County District Court.  [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Northern Territory Labor holds back from supporting legislation amendments that propose to regulate fracking
ABC Rural
Carl Curtain

The Northern Territory Opposition says it will not support amendments to the Petroleum Act that are before Parliament this week. The NT Government is introducing reforms to the legalisation that it said would regulate the onshore oil and gas industry, specifically hydraulic fracturing.  [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
The Sand Mines That Ruin Farmland
New York Times
Nancy C. Loeb Opinion

Chicago — WHILE the shale gas industry has been depressed in recent years by low oil and gas prices, analysts are predicting that it will soon rebound. Many of the environmental hazards of the gas extraction process, called hydraulic fracturing or fracking, are by now familiar: contaminated drinking water, oil spills and methane gas leaks, exploding rail cars and earthquakes.   [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Activists want extended comment, hearing on Wayne drilling
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

Organized by Athens County Fracking Action Network (ACFAN), representatives of eight grassroots environmental groups held press conferences on Wednesday, first at Wayne National Forest Headquarters and later in downtown Marietta. Speakers from Torch Can Do, Buckeye Forest Council, Ohio Sierra Club, Mid-Ohio Valley Climate Action, Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, Green Sanctuary of the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Marietta, Wayne Oil and Gas Organizing Group, andACFAN called for an extension of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) comment period and a public hearing on BLM/Wayne plans to open the Wayne to deep-shale, high pressure horizontal drilling and fracturing (“fracking”).   [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
New blow to homeowners in massive Porter Ranch gas leak in L.A.
CBS News


LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health issued a stop work order Sunday evening to Southern California Gas over its cleaning efforts following the months-long Porter Ranch gas leak, reports CBS Los Angeles. SoCal Gas had begun cleaning the homes of relocated Porter Ranch residents, but the county found they weren't cleaning to specified court order, the health agency announced Sunday.  [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Study: Fracking Pollution Disproportionately Impacts Children
Public News Service


CHEYENNE, Wyo. - Children and infants are especially at risk for health problems due to fracking, according to a new study by the Center for Environmental Health. Ellen Webb, health energy sciences and advocacy manager for the Center and the report's lead author, says it's the first comprehensive literature review on respiratory risks associated with unconventional oil and gas operations. "Air pollution is basically routine in fracking," says Webb. "So many people living near fracking have reported health problems, but the actual literature being able to show cause and effect is really just starting to emerge."  [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Israel's Government Approves Leviathan Natural Gas Deal
E&P
Reuters

Israel has approved a deal it hopes will fast-track development of the huge Leviathan offshore natural gas field and end years of regulatory uncertainty that has stifled the country's nascent oil and gas industry.   [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
DEP official’s private email had urged groups for ‘pushback’
Washington Times
Mzrc Levy

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - In an email that precipitated his resignation, Gov. Tom Wolf’s environmental protection secretary criticized environmental advocates for a lack of “pushback” against certain bills and said they were “without influence.”   [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Florida Supreme Court strikes down FPL's gas drilling investments
Utility Drive
Robert Walton

The Florida Supreme Court ruled 6-1 last week that the Public Service Commission overstepped its authority when it allowed the state's largest utility to invest in natural gas production and use ratepayer money to cover the cost, the Miami Herald reports.   [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
US Remained Top Petroleum, Natural Gas Producer In The World In 2015
IBT
Maria Gallucci

The United States produced more petroleum liquids and natural gas than any other nation in 2015, federal energy data show. Even as low oil prices forced companies to delay drilling and postpone projects, U.S. producers still churned up more total hydrocarbons than Russia or Saudi Arabia last year.  [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Opponents cheer as energy firm withdraws application for northeast gas pipeline
Times Union
Brian Nearing

Nassau Developers of the Northeast Energy Direct gas pipeline project, which would have passed through southern Albany and Rensselaer counties to bring fracked gas from northern Pennsylvania to metropolitan Boston, withdrew their application Monday to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, effectively killing the project. J. Curtis Moffatt, a vice president and counsel with Houston-based developer Kinder Morgan, wrote FERC to say the planned 188-mile, $3.1-billion project, which the company suspended last month due to a lack of potential customers, was now being withdrawn. Moffat's three-paragraph letter offered no further rationale for the company's decision.  [Full Story]

May 23, 2016
Hillary Clinton’s Energy Initiative Pressed Countries to Embrace Fracking, New Emails Reveal
The Intercept
Lee Fang and Steve Horn

BACK IN APRIL, just before the New York primary, Hillary Clinton’s campaign aired a commercial on upstate television stations touting her work as secretary of state forcing “China, India, some of the world’s worst polluters” to make “real change.” She promised to “stand firm with New Yorkers opposing fracking, giving communities the right to say ‘no’.” The television spot, which was not announced and does not appear on the official campaign YouTube page with most of Clinton’s other ads, implied a history of opposition to fracking, here and abroad. But emails obtained by The Intercept from the Department of State reveal new details of behind-the-scenes efforts by Clinton and her close aides to export American-style hydraulic fracturing — the horizontal drilling technique best known as fracking — to countries all over the world.  [Full Story]

May 22, 2016
Oil regulators increasing risk of earthquakes in California
The Sacramento Bee
Shaye Wolf

Californians got another sobering reminder recently that we’re overdue for a massive earthquake. The San Andreas Fault, one expert said, is “locked, loaded and ready to roll.” This looming temblor could be big enough to kill or injure thousands of people. Shaye Wolf So why are California regulators letting oil companies increase quake risks by drilling injection wells near faults across the state?   [Full Story]

May 22, 2016
Colorado residents push to protect homes, river from fracking
The Denver Post
Bruce Finley

PARACHUTE — Colorado residents fighting new oil and gas development — 53 wells and a fracking waste facility on the banks of the Colorado River — have turned to an untested state rule in a last-ditch push for protection.   [Full Story]

May 21, 2016
Schumer, Gillibrand urge feds to freeze planned pipeline expansion near Indian Point
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Denis Slattery

Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand want the federal government to halt the expansion of a gas pipeline project that runs past the Indian Point nuclear power plant. The New York Democrats are asking the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to halt the Algonquin pipeline until independent health and safety reviews are completed.  [Full Story]

May 21, 2016
Environmental Groups Suing EPA Over Fractured Fracking Policies
Alternative Daily
Ian Carey

Last week, the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), along with several other environmental groups, filed a lawsuit against the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for failing to develop federal regulations regarding the disposal of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing operations (fracking).   [Full Story]

May 21, 2016
NT Chief Minister's desperate bid to push gas fracking
Green Left
Kerry Smith

Northern Territory Chief Minister Adam Giles announced a new policy on Facebookfor the Territory election in August on May 14. The policy, called “Knowledge Territory”, promises $500 education vouchers if the Territory receives royalty payments from onshore gas fracking.   [Full Story]

May 21, 2016
Wolf's environmental protection secretary resigns
WTAE


HARRISBURG, Pa. —Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf's environmental protection secretary resigned Friday after Wolf's office began looking into an email the official sent to environmental advocacy groups from a private email address.   [Full Story]

May 21, 2016
Pinellas County moves to ban fracking
Saint Peters Blog
Anne Lindberg

Pinellas County Commissioners are poised not only to prohibit fracking in the county but also to penalize drilling companies that violate the ban. If commissioners give the proposal tentative approval at Tuesday’s meeting, the ban would likely come before them at a June 7 public hearing.   [Full Story]

May 21, 2016
Fife Council sets out strong stance against fracking
DC Thomson
Craig Smith

The local authority has voted 56-3 to formally stress its resistance to all forms of fracking and any unconventional gas extraction (UGE) in the region, sending out a clear signal to others that Fife will be a frack-free zone. However, The Courier understands that there is unease at a senior level at how the decision was reached after several councillors chose to ignore advice given to them prior to the debate on the issue.   [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
Kathleen Peters' fracking vote draws protests
Tampa Bay Times
Mary Ellen Klas

Rep. Kathleen Peters, the former Republican mayor of the tiny seaside town of South Pasadena in Pinellas County, has found what it's like to be hit by the anti-fracking wave.   [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
Q&A: What is fracking and why are people anxious about it? All you need to know about the gas & oil extraction process, and why it’s controversial.
BT


Efforts by energy companies and the Government to get fracking off the ground in the UK are being fought every step of the way by protesters. Here is the low-down on the process.   [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
Fracking boom in Portage County raises concerns about drinking water
Cleveland19
Sara Goldenberg

PORTAGE COUNTY, OH (WOIO) - Fracking for oil and gas in Ohio is on the rise. More fracking is bringing fears of water contamination for some residents who live nearby. Hydraulic fracking injects large amounts of water mixed with sand and chemicals underground to force open shale rock, releasing oil or gas. It's what comes up next that worries some residents in Portage County.   [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
Exposed: Spectra-Funded Group Lobbied for FERC Commissioner's Reappointment, Then FERC Approved Spectra’s Gas Pipelines
DeSmogBlog
Itai Vardi

A business advocacy group lobbied for the reappointment of a federal energy commissioner while one of its own members sought approval for several projects from the same federal regulator, a DeSmog investigation has found. In the past three years, natural gas infrastructure giant Spectra Energy has asked the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) approval for a number of projects in the US Northeast. During this time, regional pro-business lobbying group the New England Council, of which Houston-based Spectra Energy is a member, lobbied President Barack Obama and the US Senate for the reappointment of FERC Commissioner Cheryl LaFleur to a second term.  [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
Strong opposition to Hawaiian Electric's LNG contract with Canada firm
Pacific Business News
Duane Shimogawa

Some opponents of Hawaiian Electric Co.’s agreement with a subsidiary of Canada’s Fortis Inc. for the bulk shipments of liquefied natural gas to the Islands as a replacement for oil want the Honolulu utility to first get approval for its new energy plan. Others oppose the contract because it involves “fracking,” which some say is destructive to the environment.   [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
Canada's aboriginals tell Trudeau they can block pipelines
Reuters
Julie Gordon

Canadian aboriginal groups and their allies said on Friday they have the power to block proposed oil pipelines on land where they have proven title, dismissing comments by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who said no community has a veto.   [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
Spectra tells Schumer and Gillibrand: Pipeline ‘will continue’
The Peekskill Post
BRYAN FUMAGALLI

Not long after Sen. Chuck Schumer and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand called for a halt in the construction of Spectra Energy’s natural gas pipeline until independent health and safety studies are conducted, the energy company shot back at the New York Democrats Friday afternoon, telling them that construction will continue. “Algonquin Gas Transmission resumed construction on the Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) project in April and will continue with its construction, in accordance with the FERC certificate, to meet the project’s critical construction timeframes and safely transport additional supplies of clean, reliable, domestic natural gas to heat the region’s homes and businesses beginning in November of this year,” Spectra’s Director of Stakeholder Outreach Marylee Hanley told The Peekskill Post when asked about the senators’ comments.   [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
NY Senators want Algonquin pipeline shut down
The Journal News
Thomas C. Zambito

New York’s two U.S. senators on Friday called on federal regulators to halt construction of a controversial natural gas pipeline that runs beside the Indian Point nuclear power plant. The state’s two Democratic senators, Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles E. Schumer, want the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to suspend construction on the Algonquin Incremental Pipeline (AIM) Project until independent health and safety reviews are finished.  [Full Story]

May 20, 2016
FPL’s fracking charge on customer bills is blasted by Florida Supreme Court
Miami Herald
MARY ELLEN KLAS

In a rebuke to Florida Power & Light, the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that state regulators exceeded their authority when they allowed the company to charge customers for its speculative investment in an Oklahoma-based fracking company. In June of last year, the Public Service Commission rejected its staff recommendation and unanimously approved guidelines that gave FPL the right to charge its customers up to $750 million a year for speculative natural-gas fracking activities without oversight from regulators for the next five years. In a 6-1 opinion written by Justice Ricky Polston, the court concluded that the PSC did not have statutory authority to authorize the charge and called its decision “overreach.”   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Massachusetts High Court Faults State Department's Actions on GHG Emissions
Renewable Energy World
Barry Cassell

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on May 17 ruled that the state Department of Environmental Protection failed a statutory mandate that requires it to "promulgate regulations establishing a desired level of declining annual aggregate emission limits for sources or categories of sources that emit greenhouse gas emissions."   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Far From Turning a Corner, Global CO2 Emissions Still Accelerating
Inside Climate News
BOB BERWYN

The level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is not just rising, it's accelerating, and another potent greenhouse gas, methane showed a big spike last year, according to the latest annual greenhouse gas index released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. CO2 emissions totaled between 35 and 40 billion tons in 2015, according to several agencies. Some of that is absorbed by forests and oceans, but those natural systems are being overwhelmed by the sheer volume of new CO2. As a result, the inventory shows, the average global concentration increased to 399 parts per million in 2015, a record jump of almost 3 ppm from the year before.  [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
FPL’s fracking charge on customer bills is blasted by Florida Supreme Court The state’s high court said regulators ‘overreached’ when they allowed the utility to charge customers for a risky investment
Bradenton Herald
Mary Ellen Klas

In a rebuke to Florida Power & Light, the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that state regulators exceeded their authority when they allowed the company to charge customers for its speculative investment in an Oklahoma-based fracking company. In June of last year, the Public Service Commission rejected its staff recommendation and unanimously approved guidelines that gave FPL the right to charge its customers up to $750 million a year for speculative natural-gas fracking activities without oversight from regulators for the next five years.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
How Ending Offshore Oil Drilling Would Help Fight Climate Change
Greenpeace
Tim Donaghy

The government has downplayed the climate impacts of oil drilling, but a new study shows that keeping oil in the ground will help fight climate change.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
The Fracking Process Is Now The Leading Cause Of Earthquakes In Texas
Think Progress
Alejandro Davila Fragoso

In the last 40 years, oil and gas activity has caused some 60 percent of Texas earthquakes higher than magnitude 3 in the Richter scale, a new study led by researchers from the University of Texas at Austin found.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Fracking investors losing patience with planning delays, says industry boss Head of Cuadrilla’s warning to UK energy minister over ‘unnecessary delays’ comes ahead of Yorkshire shale gas planning decision
The Guardian
Damian Carrington

The backers of fracking in the UK do not have “limitless patience” for planning delays, according to a leading industry boss. Francis Egan, chief executive of Cuadrilla, warned that despite the government’s promise to fast track fracking, the planning process remains a slow lane. The comments come just ahead of a planning decision in Yorkshire on Third Energy’s application for shale gas exploration.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Fracking continues to scare local leaders
Huron Daily Tribune
Chris Aldridge

BAD AXE — Fracking isn’t going over well with Huron County officials. “The more you look into it, the scarier it gets,” said Scott Boshart, Bad Axe’s director of public works.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Anti-fracking coalition delivers petition to Parliament
Times Live


An anti-fracking alliance group comprising the civil rights organisation AfriForum and Treasure the Karoo Action Group (TKAG) on Thursday submitted a petition to both the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces in Cape Town.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
South African NGOs Deliver Anti-Fracking Petition to Country's Parliament
Sputnik News


MOSCOW (Sputnik) — An alliance of South Africa's non-governmental organizations on Thursday delivered a petition to the national parliament to thoroughly monitor issues related to hydraulic fracturing in the country's natural region of Karoo, one of the alliance's members said.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Harvard’s Investments in Oil and Gas Fracking
Harvard Crimson
Benjamin A Franta

This semester, Divest Harvard and Democracy Matters teamed up to investigate Harvard’s fossil fuel investments. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates that around $100 billion dollars need to be divested from fossil fuel extraction each year for the next twenty years to meet climate goals. Yet Harvard refuses to draw down its fossil fuel investments and is even making new private equity investments in oil and gas exploration and extraction. This led us to wonder: Exactly what is Harvard investing in?   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Court says FPL can't charge customers for out-of-state fracking project
Sun Sentinel
Associated Press

The Florida Supreme Court says that the state's largest utility can't make customers pay for the costs associated with a natural gas drilling project in another state.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Sierra Club to hold gas forum in Bridgeport
CT Post
Jim Shay

BRIDGEPORT - The Connecticut Chapter Sierra Club will present a Gas Pipeline Educational Forum at 6:30 p.m. on June 8 at the Bridgeport Public Library, 925 Broad St.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Denton activist shared story of fracking fight Tuesday
Daily Progress
Michelle Charles

A group of about 25 people gathered at the Stillwater Public Library Tuesday night to hear a tale of two cities: Denton, Texas, and Stillwater. Stop Fracking Payne County hosted Adam Briggle, a University of North Texas philosophy professor who helped lead the charge to get hydraulic fracturing, commonly called fracking, of oil and gas wells banned within the city limits of Denton, Texas in November 2014.  [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
Evolution of a movement: story and photo essay Anti-fracking, community-rights activists turn to civil disobedience following Colorado Supreme Court ruling
Boulder Weekly
Joel Dyer

On May 2, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled that Longmont’s fracking ban and Fort Collins’ fracking moratorium were in conflict with state regulations and therefore invalid. It wasn’t because communities have no right to apply their own land-use and zoning ordinances to oil and gas extraction within city limits, the court upheld that right. The high court’s ruling was based on it’s claim that the “state’s goals,” when it comes to oil and gas, are to maximize production and prevent wasting any oil and gas by leaving it in the ground, and that communities can only use their own regulations if they support that goal.   [Full Story]

May 19, 2016
WC group challenges drilling moratorium
Wayne Independent
Kevin Kearney

SCRANTON – A Lake Ariel company seeking to drill for natural gas in Wayne County is challenging the years-long drilling moratorium imposed by the Delaware River Basin Commission, saying the regulatory organization is overstepping its bounds by not allowing drilling.   [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
EDF, Google map, measure natural gas leaks in Dallas area
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

(DALLAS – May 18, 2016) Environmental Defense Fund and Google Earth Outreach have teamed up to create interactive online maps using Google Street View mapping cars specially equipped with sensors and software that allow researchers not only to locate but also measure dozens of natural gas leaks beneath the streets in select areas of greater Dallas served by the Mid-Tex division of Atmos Energy, which has cooperated with researchers on the project.  [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Israel, Egypt Said Nearing Compromise on Natural Gas Dispute
Bloomberg
David Wainer, Yaacov Benmelch and Jonathan Ferziger

Israel and Egypt are close to a compromise that would sweep away a major obstacle to a multibillion-dollar natural gas deal. Israel may agree to settle for half of the $1.73 billion fine Egypt was ordered to pay it so talks on exporting Israeli offshore gas there can go ahead, two people familiar with the negotiations said, requesting anonymity because the talks are private. Payments would be spread over 14 years, one of the people said.  [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
France Is Trying To Ban Imports Of U.S. Shale Gas: What It Means For You
Seeking Alpha


Summary French senate is trying to pass a ban on imports of shale gas from the United States. Conventional natural gas and fracked shale natural gas are homogeneously mixed during transport via pipeline and in liquefaction tanks... the two cannot be separated. If this ban were to go through, it could hurt companies such as Cheniere Energy and Total S.A.  [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Wayne County landowners sue over fracking ban
The Times-Tribune
TERRIE MORGAN-BESECKER

Frustrated by a six-year moratorium on natural gas drilling imposed by the Delaware River Basin Commission, the owners of 180 acres in Wayne County filed a federal lawsuit against the agency. Attorneys for the Wayne Land and Mineral Group LLC contend the commission is overstepping its authority in requiring them to seek its approval before a gas well can be drilled on their land. They ask a judge to declare that construction of a well pad does not constitute a “project” under commission rules, which would free them to lease their land to companies interested in trying to extract natural gas from the Marcellus shale.  [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Wayne County landowners sue DRBC to allow gas drilling along the Delaware
State Impact PA
Susan Phillips

A new lawsuit seeks to jump start natural gas drilling in Northeast Pennsylvania along the Delaware River where a defacto moratorium on Marcellus Shale gas production has been in place for six years. The federal suit filed by the Wayne Land and Mineral Group challenges the authority of the Delaware River Basin Commission to regulate natural gas drilling. The DRBC, a four-state agency that includes a federal representative, oversees water quality for the Delaware River based on a compact signed back in 1961. The lawsuit argues the DRBC has overreached its authority.   [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
ND Health Department Responds to Duke Fracking Study
KX News


The head of the North Dakota Department of Health says the Duke University study has merit -- but he also thinks it doesn't tell the whole story about fracking and saltwater contamination. Dave Glatt says a more comprehensive look at the state would have shown different results.   [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Appellate court backs North Royalton's fight against mandatory pooling in driller's plan to frack for new well
Cleveland .com
Robert Higgs

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A state appellate court on Tuesday sided with North Royalton in a three-year fight to thwart an oil and gas driller who wants to frack for a new gas well in the city.   [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Special Report: In North Dakota's oil patch, a humbling comedown
Business Insider
Ernest Scheyder

That future has evaporated. Those who haven't packed up and left the Bakken are facing a new reality of smaller budgets, fewer residents and the physical detritus of a building boom that left behind hundreds of empty apartments.   [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Anti-fracking activists: Give us back local control
Colorado Independent
Kelsey Ray

Hundreds of activists and families from across Colorado gathered in Thornton Saturday to protest hydraulic fracturing near schools and neighborhoods.   [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Feds take steps to block anti-fracking activists
Washington Examiner
John Siciliano

Federal regulators unanimously approved a plan Wednesday to use the Internet to block anti-fracking activists from disrupting their Thursday public meeting in Washington.   [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
Oil Company To Face Felony Charges Over Massive California Spill
ThinkProgress
Samantha Page

The company responsible for spilling 140,000 gallons of oil on the Pacific coastline near Santa Barbara, California, has been indicted on 46 charges, including four felony charges. One employee of Plains All American Pipeline was also indicted. The company faces up to $2.8 million in fines plus additional costs and penalties, which would be split between the state and Santa Barbara County. The employee, 41-year-old environmental and regulatory compliance specialist James Buchanan, faces up to three years in jail.  [Full Story]

May 18, 2016
FERC: Virtually all new electric capacity added in Q1 2016 was renewable
Utility Dive
Robert Walton

A Q1 infrastructure update from FERC shows renewable energy made up almost all new capacity added in the United States so far this year: 1,291 MW, compared to 18 MW of new gas capacity and no nuclear or coal. More than 700 MW of wind and 500 MW of solar were added in the first quarter, from a combined 53 new generating facilities. Old-school fuel generation still dominates overall, however: Natural gas holds the largest generation share, with 500 GW or about 43% of U.S. capacity, followed by coal (26%) and nuclear (9%).   [Full Story]

May 17, 2016
Massachusetts Court Sides with Teenagers in 'Historic' Climate Victory
Common Dreams
Deirdre Fulton

Siding with four teenage plaintiffs and the environmental groups that backed them, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on Tuesday ruled that the state has failed to fulfill its legal obligation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The unanimous decision from the state's highest court reverses a lower court ruling and requires the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) issue regulations "that address multiple sources of categories of sources of greenhouse gas emissions, impose a limit on emissions that may be released, limit the aggregate emissions released from each group of regulated sources or categories of sources, set emission limits for each year, and set limits that decline on an annual basis."  [Full Story]

May 17, 2016
"End the Circus": Big Oil Group Plots to Exclude Public from Public Lands Bidding at IOGCC Meeting
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

At the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC)'s 2016 meeting in Denver, Colorado this week, a representative from a prominent oil and gas lobbying group advocated that auctions of federal lands should happen online “eBay”-style — a clear attempt to shut the public out of the bidding process for fossil fuel leases on public lands. Speaking on public lands issues in front of IOGCC's public lands committee, Kathleen Sgamma — Western Energy Alliance's (WEA) vice president of governmental affairs — compared environmental groups' Keep It In The Ground campaign actions at U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) bids to a “circus.” Sgamma said WEA was in contact with both BLM and Congressional members to push the auctions out of the public sphere and onto the internet.  [Full Story]

May 17, 2016
Our Crime Against the Planet, and Ourselves
The New York Times
Natasha Lennard and Adrian Parr

Natasha Lennard: In your work, you raise the idea of framing climate degradation as a form of violence, and potentially as a crime against humanity. What does it mean to speak of the human destruction of the climate in terms of criminal justice? Is there a distinct guilty party that can be held responsible for this crime? Adrian Parr: There are three components to the claim that environmental degradation is a crime against humanity. First, it is an appeal to a universal, common humanity that stretches across space and time, and that is oblivious to geographic and historical differences. Second, the crime in question is an existential one that is committed against the very experience of being human, the human élan. Third, it is a crime that calls the established legal order into question, because everyone, and yet no one specifically, can be held responsible.  [Full Story]

May 17, 2016
Albany council votes against oil pipeline
Times Union
Jordan Carleo-Evangelist

Albany City lawmakers voted late Monday night to join more than two-dozen other New York communities in opposing a controversial oil pipeline linking the Port of Albany to northern New Jersey. The resolution condemning the Pilgrim Pipeline project as an environmental risk and public health hazard carries no legal weight. But advocates called the vote a warning shot for the project's financiers that should send the message that the planned 178-mile pipeline faces stiff local resistance that will make it a bad investment.  [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Constitution Pipeline Challenges Decision by New York State to Block Federally Approved Pipeline
Constitution Pipeline
Press Release

Constitution Pipeline Challenges Decision by New York State to Block Federally Approved Pipeline NYSDEC decision blocks millions of New York and New England consumers from lower cost energy Thousands of New York jobs delayed and threatened by the decision State and regional leaders say decision impacts economic development, school funding Decision slows U.S. transition from coal to natural gas; Slows carbon reductions and adoption of more renewable resources  [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Train Hauling Fracking Sand Derails In Northern Colorado
CBS Denver


TIMNATH, Colo. (AP) — Firefighters say nine train cars that derailed near an elementary school in northern Colorado were carrying sand used in fracking but no hazardous materials.   [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Public blasts Fla. for new water toxics limits. Fracking planned?
13 WMAZ
Jeff Burlew

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida wants to weaken its restrictions on roughly two dozen cancer-causing chemicals that can be discharged into its rivers, lakes, streams and coastal waters.   [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Earthquake surge rattles Oklahoma’s fracking industry
FT.com
Anna Nicolaou

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/2/78dac9b8-fffc-11e5-99cb-83242733f755.html#ixzz48rBuAABD Oklahomans are no strangers to natural disasters. The Midwestern state stretches across Tornado Alley — one of the most tornado-prone places in the world — and residents grapple with hail, thunderstorms and severe weather. In the past few years, however, homeowners, property developers and insurers in Oklahoma have faced an unfamiliar challenge: earthquakes.   [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Tens of Thousands Take Part in Global Actions Targeting World’s Most Dangerous Fossil Fuel Projects
EcoWatch
350.org

Twelve days of unprecedented worldwide action against fossil fuels concluded Sunday showing that the climate movement will not rest until all coal, oil and gas is kept in the ground. The combined global efforts of activists on six continents now pose a serious threat to the future of the fossil fuel industry, already weakened by financial and political uncertainty.   [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Appalachian Basin becoming U.S. natural gas stronghold
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

The growth of drilling in the Marcellus-Utica shales and the resulting natural gas boom are changing the American energy picture, even though shale drilling is slowing down across the United States due to low commodity prices. Since 2012, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia have accounted for 85 percent of U.S. shale gas growth, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Shale gas today represents two thirds of U.S. natural gas production, the agency reported recently.   [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Florida Proposes Tripling Amount Of Benzene That Can Be Polluted Into State Waters
Think Progress
Natasha Geiling

For the first time in over 25 years, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is proposing to revise its restrictions on what toxic chemicals can be discharged into surface water — but environmentalists worry that the proposed standards, which would triple the amount of a toxic chemical called benzene allowed to be discharged into surface waters like rivers and lakes, are meant more to entice fracking companies than keep Floridians safe.  [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
EPA Announces Historic Plan to Regulate Methane Emissions
Care2
Llowell Williams

In an historic announcement, the Environmental Protection Agency says it will be implementing restrictions on methane gas emissions — the first time the greenhouse gas has ever been regulated in the United States.   [Full Story]

May 16, 2016
Wildlife group sues US over Enbridge pipeline in Michigan
Bakken.com
Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) — An environmental group is accusing the federal government of misjudging an emergency response plan for a major oil pipeline that runs through Michigan. The National Wildlife Federation filed a lawsuit Monday against a pipeline safety agency, saying the government in 2013 failed to account for impacts on wildlife, plants, and Great Lakes shore if Line 5 ruptures.  [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
Protesters stage sit-in at Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility
LA Times
Kim Christensen

About 20 environmental activists staged a sit-in Sunday afternoon at the entrance to the troubled Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility in the San Fernando Valley, calling on Gov. Jerry Brown to keep it closed permanently.  [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
Phil Doe: Colorado court's fracking decision trampled on citizens' rights
Times-Call
Phil Doe Opinion

Recently, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled for fracking and against the rights of the people in Longmont and in Fort Collins, citing pre-emption by state law. Due to health and safety concerns, both Colorado cities had decided by popular vote to ban oil and gas drilling within their city limits.  [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
Fracking: Oklahoma’s New F-Word
UK Finance
Irina Slav

Fracking in Oklahoma, as well as elsewhere, has been on the decline, thanks to the oil price slump. Quakes, however, are continuing at alarming rates. A CBC report on the situation notes anecdotal evidence that capping wells could possibly reduce seismic activity, but anecdotal evidence is insufficient.   [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
Public blasts DEP over new water toxics limits
Tallahassee Democrat
Jeff Burlew

The state of Florida wants to weaken its restrictions on roughly two dozen cancer-causing chemicals that can be discharged into its rivers, lakes, streams and coastal waters.   [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
Tex Hawkins: Citizens are fed up with the 'self-regulating' frac sand industry
Winona Daily News
Tex Hawkins Opinion

This week, the Koch-funded Heartland Institute sponsored an industrial “insiders” conference in La Crosse, Wis., to promote frac sand mining across the uniquely beautiful and welcoming Driftless area, which covers large parts of several Midwestern states. I participated in a rally organized by the Alliance to Ban Frac Sand Mining and Address Climate Change, held in front of the La Crosse Center on Tuesday afternoon. We citizens were on the sidewalk in the rain, while the insiders enjoyed whatever benefits a $400 price of admission brings.  [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
Client Alert: Law Firms Tell Fossil Fuel Companies They Could Be Next in "ExxonKnew" Probe
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

Some of the country's biggest law firms have recently penned “client alert” memoranda, suggesting to their clients that they closely monitor the ongoing Attorneys General investigations occurring in states nationwide on the potentially fraudulent behavior of ExxonMobil. DeSmog tracked down alerts written by three different firms: Crowell & Moring, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, as well as King & Spalding. All of them have maintained fossil fuel industry clients as well as tobacco industry clients, a DeSmog review has revealed. A previous DeSmog investigation pointed out that Exxon has hired Ted Wells, who represented Philip Morris in Big Tobacco's racketeering lawsuit filed against it by the U.S. Department of Justice, to its legal defense team for the ongoing state AGs' probe.  [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
Feds might deny oil, gas leases to climate activist
The Desert Sun
Sammy Roth

The Bureau of Land Management has been auctioning off public land for oil and gas drilling for decades. But nothing could have prepared the agency for what's happening now in Utah. Nearly 100 climate activists disrupted a lease auction in Salt Lake City earlier this year, saying the United States needs to stop extracting oil and gas if it hopes to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. The fireworks continued after the auction, when the environmental writer Terry Tempest Williams submitted bids for two oil and gas leases — covering more than 1,100 acres — that hadn't drawn any interest during the auction.  [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
'Heat & Light': Jennifer Haigh returns to Bakerton, Pa., where fracking fractures families
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Jeffrey Condran

In her new novel, “Heat & Light,” Jennifer Haigh returns to the landscape of Western Pennsylvania and the fictional town of Bakerton, the setting for her two previous books “Baker Towers” and “News From Heaven.” Once booming with oil and coal money, Bakerton has collapsed. It is now a place where “every worthwhile thing has already happened.” Until a SUNY geologist determines there are natural gas deposits beneath Bakerton, and that the land may have one more “gift” to give. Ms. Haigh’s novel, however, is keen to remind readers that prosperity rarely comes without a price, especially in the case of hydraulic fracking.   [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
USGS study shows fracking contamination in Wolf Creek watershed
Register-Herald
Sarah Plummer

A new study led by the U.S. Geological Survey indicates waste from oil and gas disposal was found in surface waters and sediments near a controversial underground injection well in Lochgelly, just outside Oak Hill.   [Full Story]

May 15, 2016
People Before Profit TD calls for Irish ban on fracking
Irish Mirror
James Ward

A fracking operation in the North will open the door for drilling here, it has been warned. Large numbers of protesters showed up at a drill in Woodburn, Co Antrim, last week. Critics say it is just yards from a reservoir which supplies water to parts of Belfast.   [Full Story]

May 14, 2016
In the timeless Yorkshire moors of my childhood, the frackers are poised to start drilling
The Guardian
Madeleine Buntin

Villages in Ryedale, North Yorkshire, hope a landmark ruling this week will save them from the disruption of the shale revolution   [Full Story]

May 14, 2016
Two Years Frack-Free in the Sespe!
Indy Bay


Members of “Save the Sespe,” a network of 2,500 environmental advocates throughout California, are celebrating the two-year anniversary of a successful petition drive to block a controversial fracking proposal in the Los Padres National Forest. The group’s efforts helped bring an end to 20 years of unchecked, unregulated fracking in the Sespe wilderness area.   [Full Story]

May 14, 2016
At Break Free Protests Around the World, Climate Activists Put Bodies on the Line
Common Dreams
Deirdre Fulton

Fossil fuel projects were blockaded simultaneously on three continents on Saturday—the "crest" of a wave of global actions responding to the growing threat of climate change. Through rallies, civil disobedience, and kayaktivism, people around the world stood up to oil and gas interests to say: enough. Additional actions are planned for Sunday.   [Full Story]

May 14, 2016
Hill: Reasons to oppose Spectra pipeline
Wicked Local Franklin
James F Hill Letter to Editor

Here are a few reasons why the Franklin Town Council should join Sharon and Walpole in passing resolutions against the proposed Spectra Energy natural gas pipeline that would run dangerously close to homes and the existing old pipeline.   [Full Story]

May 14, 2016
Florida fracking fightback: St Petersburg joins push against controversial drilling
RT


Fracking faces strong opposition in the US city St Petersburg, which is on the verge of joining the more than 80 cities and counties in Florida that ban the controversial drilling method. Rallying on the steps of their city hall, council members and environmental activists promoted a new ordinance, which will be heard by the public service and infrastructure committee within the next three weeks, according to WMNF.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Colorado Supreme Court Says, No Fracking Bans Allowed
Sustainable Business


During the fracking industry's short history, it has increased methane emissions, earthquakes, and pollution of air, water and soil, spurring many towns and cities to ban the practice altogether.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Lawsuit Filed Against EPA on Fracking's Other Big Problem
Sustainable Business


As EPA prepared to release regulations on methane emissions from fracking, a lawsuit was filed to get the agency to address the industry's other big problem - waste.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Donald Trump's new energy adviser Kevin Cramer loves fracking, doubts climate change
Inquisitr
Mike Bessler

Donald Trump seems to be shaking off vestiges of the “Never Trump” movement and intra-party squabbles as he surrounds himself with seasoned political advisers as he heads towards the next phase of his run for the White House. But while his recent choice of political insider Kevin Cramer as a key energy adviser will likely appeal to Trump’s far right-leaning base of supporters, some of Cramer’s key positions may not appeal to a broader swath of the electorate.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Sanders calls for fracking ban, then talks economic inequality
Bismarck Tribune
Nick Smith

A call for a ban on hydraulic fracking Friday evening by Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont drew a cheer during a rally in the nation's second largest oil-producing state. The brief comment drew a round of cheers as Sanders, 74, fired up a crowd of more than 500 in the Bismarck Depot parking lot following rallies in Fargo and Grand Forks earlier in the day. “We’ve got to ban fracking,” Sanders said while discussing energy policy.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Wentworth temporarily prohibits fracking
Greensboro Rockingham Now
Justyn Melrose

WENTWORTH — As of May 3, the Town of Wentworth has joined some of its neighbors in unanimously approving a temporary ban on fracking. The ordinance comes as a result of previous council conversations and will impose a hold on any potential fracking activity until Nov. 16, 2017.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Ky. found 'hot' fracking waste at W.Va. source
Courier-Journal
James Bruggers

Follow-up tests at a West Virginia company that prepared radioactive fracking waste to be sent to Kentucky revealed material so "hot" that it would need to go to a special landfill for disposal – not the Kentucky municipal dump where earlier shipments were sent, a Kentucky official has revealed.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Ohio’s proposed regulations seek to reduce methane leaks
The Blade
Tom Henry

With Ohio becoming a bigger player in the global fracking surge, environmental activists, oil and gas lobbyists, union representatives, fishing and outdoor enthusiasts, and public health officials across the state were weighing in on the Obama Administration’s final rules for methane releases that were announced Thursday.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Protesters Target Albany Oil Trains
WAMC
Dave Lucas

Climate activists from near and from as far as Maine, Quebec and central Pennsylvania are converging on downtown Albany for a day of protests against fossil fuels.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Ruffalo documentary speaks out against fracking
Herald Tribune
Shelby Webb

SARASOTA — Florida residents may associate fracking with states such as Oklahoma or Pennsylvania. Some may picture wells in areas surrounded by nothing but barren fields — land that would be otherwise useless if not for oil and gas companies.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Faced With a Fracking Giant, This Small Town Just Legalized Civil Disobedience A new first-in-the-nation law will shield residents from arrest as they use direct action to stop fracking-wastewater injection wells.
Yes
Kate Stringer

A tiny community sitting on a 27-square-mile piece of Western Pennsylvania wanted to send a big message to the energy company planning to deposit toxic fracking wastewater under its neighborhoods. And its 700 residents wanted it to be perfectly legal for them to loudly object.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Fractivists call for prohibiting all forms of fracking
Binghamton Homepage


Local fractivists are calling on Governor Cuomo to prohibit all forms of fracking, not just methods that involve water. Walter Hang, President of the environmental firm Toxics Targeting, held a news conference today to discuss the latest developments involving waterless fracking.   [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Trump taps climate change skeptic, fracking advocate as key energy advisor
Reuters
VALERIE VOLCOVICI

Republican presidential contender Donald Trump has asked one of America's most ardent drilling advocates and climate change skeptics to help him draft his energy policy. U.S. Republican Congressman Kevin Cramer of North Dakota - a major oil drilling state - is writing a white paper on energy policy for the New York billionaire, Cramer and sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.  [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Ky. found 'hot' fracking waste at W.Va. source
Courier-Journal
James Bruggers

Follow-up tests at a West Virginia company that prepared radioactive fracking waste to be sent to Kentucky revealed material so "hot" that it would need to go to a special landfill for disposal – not the Kentucky municipal dump where earlier shipments were sent, a Kentucky official has revealed. The disclosure casts some doubt on prior assurances about the radioactive intensity of waste sent to Kentucky, said Louisville attorney Tom FitzGerald, director of the Kentucky Resources Council.  [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
State asks for more information on potentially allowable fracking plan
PoliticoNewYork
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — The state Department of Environmental Conservation is requesting more information about a proposal to frack for natural gas in the Southern Tier using propane and sand rather than water. The energy industry and environmentalists agree the proposal has the potential to bypass the ban on fracking that Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered in December 2014. The ban applied to high-volume hydraulic fracturing, which uses large volumes of water mixed with sand and chemicals to create fractures in rock that release gas.  [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
AG wants feds to probe Constitution Pipeline
Press & Sun Bulletin
Jon Campbell

ALBANY -- Attorney General Eric Schneiderman wants the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to investigate alleged illegal construction of the Constitution Pipeline, a stalled natural gas line that had been slated for the Southern Tier and Catskills. Schneiderman said Friday he petitioned FERC to look into allegations that the Constitution Pipeline Company may have authorized "widespread" tree cutting and other construction along the pipeline's right-of-way corridor in New York before the project's permits were in place.  [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Residents debate expansion of troubled Iowa sand mine
The Des Moines Register
Haley Henschel and Bridgit Bowden

ELKADER, Ia. — A controversial frac sand mining company is facing opposition to plans for a sevenfold expansion of its underground mine in Clayton County in northeast Iowa. Pattison Sand Co. has requested rezoning of 746 acres of land from agricultural to heavy industrial for eventual expansion of its underground mine from its current size of about 100 acres. The site includes surface mining on some of its 1,600 acres.  [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
AG adds to legal woes for Constitution pipeline
Times Union
Brian Nearing

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on Friday raised another potential legal obstacle to the proposed Constitution natural gas pipeline, already wounded this month when the state denied it necessary environmental permits. Schneiderman’s office asked the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to delay action on its December 2014 order that approved the 125-mile pipeline, which would bring natural gas to Schoharie County from the hydrofrack fields of northern Pennsylvania.  [Full Story]

May 13, 2016
Faced With a Fracking Giant, This Small Town Just Legalized Civil Disobedience
Yes! Magazine
Kate Stringer

A tiny community sitting on a 27-square-mile piece of Western Pennsylvania wanted to send a big message to the energy company planning to deposit toxic fracking wastewater under its neighborhoods. And its 700 residents wanted it to be perfectly legal for them to loudly object. Grant Township had seen what happens when people nationwide take to the streets to protest bullying corporations: Arrests. Lots of them.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Waste Water Treatment in Hydraulic Fracturing Expands Even as Fracking Gains a Foothold
Environmental Leader


Hydraulic fracturing (commonly referred to as fracking) has faced increasing scrutiny from the public and regulators alike. On May 2nd, Colorado’s high court repealed a charter that banned fracking in the city of Longmont and also voted down a 5-year moratorium on fracking in Fort Collins. These are the latest developments in a long string of proposed regulatory actions to ban, or at least hinder, fracking. Groups like Keep Tap Water Safe keep an up-to-date list of regulatory actions against the practice. It seems like everyone who is anyone has something bad to say about fracking.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Fracking issues are back on the table
The County Record
Kelli Peacock Dunn

Representatives from Rethink Florida Energy were at the Blountstown Public Library Thursday night to host a workshop on the impact Hydraulic and Acidic Fracturing could have on Calhoun County. As previously reported, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection has issued a permit to Cholla Petroleum to begin seismic testing in Calhoun and Gulf counties. Based in Texas, Cholla Petroleum will be performing testing in the Dead Lakes area in southern Calhoun County and northern Gulf County.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Peace River district softens stance on fracking in regional park Peace River Regional District directors voted to reverse a previous resolution asking the province not to lease oil and gas rights beneath a parcel that ...
Business Vancouver
Jonny Wakefield

At its April 28 meeting, PRRD directors voted to reverse a previous resolution asking the province not to lease oil and gas rights beneath a parcel that includes Blackfoot Regional Park.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
McKibben to join Colorado activists at Saturday rally
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

DENVER, CO – On May 14th, protestors and community members will converge in Thornton to call for an end to fracking developments that threaten local neighborhoods and schools, and accelerate dangerous climate change. They will be joined by renowned environmentalist, author, and journalist Bill McKibben, and Jonny 5 of the band Flobots. This protest is part of the global platform to Break Free from fossil fuels, a coordination of independently-organized actions in over two dozen countries across six continents to keep fossil fuels in the ground and promote clean renewable energy.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Local action, global movement Climate activist, filmmaker stops in Chico to support county ban on fracking
News Review
Howard Hardee

Within the climate change movement, Josh Fox is a rock star. A preeminent figure in the opposition to fracking and horizontal drilling, he directed the acclaimed 2010 documentary Gasland, which famously starts with a man turning on his faucet and igniting water that’s reportedly contaminated with fracking chemicals.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Sanders speaks frankly about Montana issues
Billings Gazette
Tom Lutey

Sen. Bernie Sanders spoke frankly with The Gazette about a number of Montana issues before taking the stage in Billings on Wednesday. On the future of coal, Sanders said America needs to stop burning coal and other fossil fuels in order to reverse climate change.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Blackmail or Protection? Why France Mulls Banning US Gas Supplies
Sputnik News


Paris does not want to buy US-produced liquefied natural gas, citing it contains much shale gas which is produced using technologies banned in France. The situation plays in the hand of other gas suppliers, first of all Russia.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Livingston County residents protest against gas company projects at Seneca Lake
Livingston County News
Julia Depillo

We Are Seneca Lake, Gas Free Seneca and Frack Free Genesee are local grassroots organizations working to prevent the revamping of salt caverns under the Seneca Lake hillside. More than 500 residents, including some from Livingston County, have been arrested for protesting at the gates of Crestwood.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
E.P.A. Methane Leak Rules Take Aim at Climate Change
The New York Times
CORAL DAVENPORT

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Thursday unveiled the first federal regulations to control emissions of potent planet-warming methane gas that could leach from new oil and gas wells, the next step in President Obama’s effort to combat climate change. The methane rules, the final version of draft regulations put forth last year by the Environmental Protection Agency, require oil and gas companies to plug and capture leaks of methane from new and modified drilling wells and storage tanks, not older, existing wells.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
EPA Begins Crackdown on Methane Emissions
Inside Climate News
Phil McKenna

The Environmental Protection Agency announced new rules on Thursday to significantly reduce methane emissions from new oil and gas facilities as well as those undergoing modifications. The regulations are the first federal standards aimed at curbing methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, emitted by oil and gas production. The rules, which were first proposed last year, will require oil and gas companies to monitor and limit the release of methane into the atmosphere at production, processing and transmission facilities. The new standards are part of an Obama administration goal to reduce methane emissions from the industry by 40-45 percent by 2025.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Obama administration announces historic new regulations for methane emissions from oil and gas
Washington Post
Chris Mooney & Brady Dennis

The Obama administration on Thursday announced a set of much-anticipated — and first ever — steps to regulate oil and gas industry emissions of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas second only to carbon dioxide in its role in the climate debate.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Linn Energy files for bankruptcy protection
Casper Star Tribune
Benjamin Storrow

Linn Energy, one of Wyoming’s largest natural gas producers, on Wednesday joined the growing ranks of exploration and production firms to file for bankruptcy protection. The move was long expected and followed months of negotiations with the company’s creditors and investors. In a release Wednesday, Linn said the bankruptcy filing was part of an agreement with the company’s creditors.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Scientists say chemicals from fracking wastewater can taint fresh water nearby
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Darryl Fears

The boom in the unconventional natural-gas drilling method known as fracking hit so fast that scientists have had to scramble to determine whether it is safe for humans and the environment. Mostly they are still trying to catch up. But a study by the U.S. Geological Survey appears to have answered a critical question about the millions of gallons of chemical-laced water that are injected into the wells to fracture rocks and release trapped gas: Is there any cause for concern when that water is stored later, whether in treatment facilities or special underground wells?   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
New Fracking Study Finds Children at Greater Risk of Respiratory Health Problems
EcoWatch
Lorraine Chow

Unconventional oil and gas (UOG) operations such as fracking might allow for cheaper prices to heat your home, but a growing number of scientists are becoming concerned about its unacceptable health implications.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Obama’s new oil & gas air pollution rule is a step forward for climate & communities Statement of Earthworks Policy Director Lauren Pagel on the publication of the final EPA rule governing methane pollution from new and modified oil and gas facilities
Earthworks
Press Release

Today, the Obama administration finalized the first national standard to cut methane pollution from new and modified sources of oil and gas production. The rule will also cut associated pollution emitted with methane: volatile organic compounds like benzene, a carcinogen.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Why Is L.A. Toxic?
Huffington Post
Mark Ruffalo

With 840 miles of beautiful coastline and palm trees swaying in the breeze, “toxic” is not the first word that comes to mind when one thinks of California. Yet, in spite of its reputation as a progressive environmental state, California’s toxic affair with oil and gas has been hiding in plain sight. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Los Angeles, the nation’s largest urban oil field. Though it is the second most populous city in the country, L.A. is still the wild, wild west when it comes to oil development. Active oil wells dot the cityscape, connected by a spider web of pipelines carrying oil, explosive fumes, and corrosive acids directly under homes. Worst of all, these oil wells have a devastating impact on Angelenos’ long-term health.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Obama Just Cracked Down on Pollution From Fracking For the first time ever, the EPA will regulate methane emissions.
Mother Jones
Tim McDonnell

The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday released the final version of new federal rules intended to curb emissions of a powerful greenhouse gas. Methane, which is the main component of natural gas, had previously been unregulated. There's a mounting pile of evidence suggesting that as the United States relies increasingly on gas to produce electricity, methane emissions are much higher than most people expected them to be.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Fracking's Air Pollution Puts Infants and Children at Risk of Developing Heart, Lung Problems: New Study
DeSmog Blog
Sharon Kelly

A newly published peer-reviewed study concludes that air pollution from fracking puts people's lungs, hearts, and immune systems at risk – and that the health risk are particularly pointed for young children and infants.   [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Fracking-related quakes have made earthquake insurance almost impossible to buy in Oklahoma
Raw Story
Reuters

As the number of earthquakes in Oklahoma exploded into the hundreds in the last few years, nearly a dozen insurance companies moved to limit their exposure, often at the expense of homeowners, a Reuters examination has found.  [Full Story]

May 12, 2016
Porter Ranch: Barium and other metals found to be the culprit behind gas leak symptoms
KPCC
Sharon McNary

Los Angeles County Public Health Department officials say its test of dust in Porter Ranch homes turned up the presence of metals, including barium, that could have caused the kinds of health symptoms some residents have reported experiencing even after the big gas leak was plugged. The county tested dust in 100 Porter Ranch homes and 11 homes outside the area, finding a pattern of several metals in the Porter Ranch homes. Further testing of mud near the well that ruptured last year also turned up the barium.  [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Colorado Supreme Court overturns city's fracking ban
The Bakken
Patrick C. Miller

The Colorado Supreme Court earlier this month overturned the city of Fort Collins’ five-year moratorium on fracking, ruling that it is preempted by state law and therefore invalid and unenforceable.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Locals battle fracking company drilling near drinking water reservoir
Ecologist
Oliver Tickell

Local people are furiously trying to stop a fracking company from drilling near a drinking water reservoir serving tens of thousands of homes, after Northern Ireland planners failed to block Infrastrata's claim for 'permitted development' rights.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Texas drilling permits down 20 percent No. 1 oil producer in the nation still posting discoveries, though sector remains under pressure.
UPI
Daniel J. Graeber

AUSTIN, Texas, May 11 (UPI) -- The number of oil and natural gas drilling permits issued by Texas regulators in April was lower year-on-year by 20 percent, state data show. The Railroad Commission of Texas said it issued 683 original drilling permits in April, compared with 848 from the same month one year ago. Most of the permits were for oil-related activities.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Lawmakers want to cut well tax rebate in exchange for horizontal drilling laterals Lawmakers plan to cap rebate and OK extended laterals.
Tulsa World
Adam Wilmoth & Paul Monies

A state incentive for economically distressed oil and gas leases that has ballooned amid low prices could be cut in a deal that would extend horizontal-well development in Oklahoma.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Book takes on the entanglements of oil
National Catholic Reporter
Melissa Jones

Book takes on the entanglements of oil   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
PRRD will accept gas drilling near Blackfoot Park parcel, with caveats
Aaska Highway News
Jonny Wakefield

The Peace River Regional District is softening its tone on fracking for gas near one of its regional parks. At its April 28 meeting, PRRD directors voted to reverse a previous resolution asking the province not to lease oil and gas rights beneath a parcel that includes Blackfoot Regional Park.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Scientists Just Pinpointed Another Example Of Fracking’s Environmental Impact
Think Progress
Alejandro Davila Fragoso

The “study demonstrates definitively that the stream is being impacted by [unconventional oil and gas extraction] wastewaters,” Denise Akob, USGS scientist and lead author of the study, told ThinkProgress. Unconventional oil and gas extraction refers to the many processes that involve hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Fracking By The Numbers — The Damage To Our Water, Land, & Climate From A Decade Of Dirty Drilling
Clean Technica
Cynthia Shahan

Proof of the hazardous, risky, severe results from fracking grows. Local communities are at serious risk from the process of fracking. A new report, Fracking by the Numbers, states: “The combination of two technologies—hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling—has enabled the oil and gas industry to engage to unlock oil and gas in underground rock formations across the United States.” But that’s just the beginning of the horror story: “Fracking,” however, has also led to tremendous environmental harm and put the health and safety of communities across the country at risk.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
California Regulators Are Approving Fracking Permits Near Fault Lines
DeSmog Blog
Mike Gaworecki

New research indicates that nearly 40 percent of new wastewater injection wells approved over the past year in California are perilously close to fault lines, increasing the risk of man-made earthquakes in the already seismically active Golden State.  [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Justice Department defends FERC against allegations of 'structural bias'
SNL
Sean Sullivan

The U.S. Justice Department stepped in to defend FERC against an environmental group's charges that the commission has been corrupted by a link between its funding and natural gas industry fees. "The United States respectfully expresses its view that plaintiffs' general allegations of structural bias fail to demonstrate that FERC's funding mechanism offers a possible temptation to favor natural gas pipeline applicants because the number of pipeline applications FERC approves does not increase FERC's revenues above Congress's annual appropriation," the Justice Department wrote in a May 10 statement of interest.---------------------------------------------------------------------- The Delaware Riverkeeper Network used strong words in announcing its March 2 lawsuit against FERC, calling the commission "a corrupt, rogue agency" that is "infected by structural bias" in favor of gas infrastructure because of the financial link between the agency and the industry. The case is unfolding against a background of regulatory delays and blocks against gas pipeline projects in the U.S. Northeast.  [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
This mystery was solved: Scientists say chemicals from fracking wastewater can taint fresh water nearby
The Washington Post
Darryl Fears

The boom in unconventional drilling for natural gas known as fracking hit so fast that scientists have had to scramble to determine whether it’s safe for humans and the environment. Mostly they’re still trying to catch up. But a study by the U.S. Geological Survey appears to have answered a critical question about the millions of gallons of chemical-laced water that are injected into the wells to fracture rocks and release trapped gas. Is there any cause for concern when that water is stored later, whether in treatment facilities or special underground wells? The short answer is yes, said the study’s lead author, Denise Akob, a USGS microbiologist.  [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
California Regulators Are Approving Fracking Permits Near Fault Lines
DeSmogBlog
Mike Gaworecki

New research indicates that nearly 40 percent of new wastewater injection wells approved over the past year in California are perilously close to fault lines, increasing the risk of man-made earthquakes in the already seismically active Golden State. The Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) found that 13 out of 33, or 39 percent, of new drill permits for wastewater disposal wells issued by regulators with California’s Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) between April 2015 and March 2016 were for drill sites within 5 miles of a fault.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
This mystery was solved: Scientists say chemicals from fracking wastewater can taint fresh water nearby
Washington Post
Darryl Fears

But a study by the U.S. Geological Survey appears to have answered a critical question about the millions of gallons of chemical-laced water that are injected into the wells to fracture rocks and release trapped gas. Is there any cause for concern when that water is stored later, whether in treatment facilities or special underground wells? The short answer is yes, said the study’s lead author, Denise Akob, a USGS microbiologist.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
Rancor, protests greet top energy official
Times Union
Brian Nearing

Colonie Climate protesters drove the head of federal energy policy from the stage Wednesday during a conference of power plant owners. Near the end of a speech to the Independent Power Producers of New York, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chairman Norman Bay was interrupted and confronted by about a half-dozen protesters at the Desmond Hotel and Conference Center. As the protesters shouted about the risks of man-made climate change and demanded that he answer, Bay tried to leave the podium, and appeared uncertain of where to go before IPPNY President Gavin Donohue quickly whisked him away through a side door.  [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
French minister eyes shale import ban as US LNG exports build
Energy & Commodities


PARIS] France's energy minister is considering closing the door to US shale gas just as American LNG exports to Europe and other ports ramp up. Energy and Environment Minister Segolene Royal said Tuesday in comments to France's parliament that she will "examine from a legal standpoint" ways to ban imports of shale gas. France barred fracking in 2011 because of environmental risks. Houston- based Cheniere Energy Inc has contracts to deliver liquefied natural gas to Engie SA, Electricite de France SA and Total SA.   [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
EPA Ready to Issue Methane Limits for New Oil and Gas Wells
The Wall Street Journal
AMY HARDER

WASHINGTON—The Environmental Protection Agency is set to issue on Thursday the first federal standards aimed at curbing methane emissions from the oil and natural gas industry, according to multiple people familiar with the plan. The final regulations, which EPA proposed last year, are the latest in a series of rules the Obama administration is pursuing in a broad agenda clamping down on greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels. The rules are one piece of an administration goal to cut methane emissions from the oil and gas industry by as much as 45% from their 2012 levels over the next decade.  [Full Story]

May 11, 2016
New Paltz Village Board upset with state investment in Pilgrim Pipeline
The Daily Freeman
WILLIAM J. KEMBLE

Posted: 05/12/16, 6:08 AM EDT | Updated: 4 secs ago 0 Comments NEW PALTZ, N.Y. >> Village Board members want state officials to divest pension funds invested in Pilgrim Pipeline. At a Village Board meeting Wednesday, Mayor Tim Rogers said a divestment request is expected to come from communities along the proposed, 182-mile route from Albany to Linden, N.J. “The New York state pension fund has investment holdings across a variety of different investment managers and several different funds under the Ares umbrella,” he said. “One of their funds, in particular, has Pilgrim as a portfolio.” Rogers said a letter would be sent to the state Comptroller’s Office to sell off or replace the account.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
ROCHESTER HILLS RESIDENTS FIGHT TO PREVENT OIL AND GAS DRILLING IN TOWN
Medill Reports
Danielle Prieur

“Don’t Drill the Hills,” a Rochester Hills citizens’ group, lost a lawsuit that pitted them against their city, Jordan Bay Development, and Sunoco Pipeline in March. That means, now that the weather is warm again, a spike in natural gas and oil prices could bring drilling to the wooded park near the walking path. That is, unless “Don’t Drill the Hills” submits an appeal to the Michigan Supreme Court.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Judge paves way for pipeline construction in Western Mass.
The Boston Globe
Travis Andersen

A Berkshire Superior Court judge on Tuesday paved the way for a subsidiary of a Houston-based energy company to begin clearing trees on several acres of the Otis State Forest in Western Massachusetts for a natural gas pipeline that will service three utility companies in Connecticut and their customers. However, Judge John A. Agostini stayed his 21-page order until July 29 to allow time for the Massachusetts Legislature to consider the pipeline, which is being proposed by Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company LLC, a subsidiary of energy giant Kinder Morgan.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Exxon's Lawyer in Climate Science Probe Has History Helping Big Tobacco and NFL Defend Against Health Claims
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

Ted Wells, an attorney hired by ExxonMobil to represent the company against accusations it lied about the climate risks of burning fossil fuels, also represented the tobacco industry in the lawsuit brought by the U.S. Department of Justice in 1999 under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, DeSmog has found. Wells also defended the National Football League (NFL) in the infamous “Deflategate” matter as well as in litigation over the far more serious issue of concussions. Wells has represented ExxonMobil since at least December 2015, following New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's announcement that his office would probe Exxon's role in funding climate change denial despite its long-held understanding and pioneering research into climate change.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Pa. pipeline opponents file suit, threatening project's momentum
The Patriot News
Colin Deppen

After overcoming a series of regulatory hurdles, the Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline Project has been issued a potential setback in the form of a new lawsuit challenging its legality and that of newly inked permits in a Philadelphia federal court. In the lawsuit filed with Philadelphia's Third Circuit Court of Appeals, The Delaware Riverkeeper Network of Bristol, Pa. is challenging state water quality permits issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for the 200-mile, 10-county, $2.6 billion natural gas pipeline project. The group claims the project and water quality plan would violate the federal Clean Water Act.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Is There A Difference In The Permitting Process For Oil Pipelines Vs. Natural Gas Pipelines?
Seeking Alpha
Karyl Patredis

Growing up, my sister, Lynea [1], always seemed to have things a little easier than me. She was my mom's favorite [2] child and I loved crying foul whenever Lynea got her way. In the world of the interstate pipeline permitting process, some argue that natural gas pipelines are easier to get approved than oil pipelines. However, similar to sibling rivalries [3], it all depends on your perspective. Let's first talk about the process for receiving approval of an interstate natural gas pipeline. According to the Natural Gas Act, companies that would like to build a pipeline must obtain a "Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity" from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) before beginning a project. This is a multi-step process.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
The Oil Industry Just Backed Out Of A Multi-Billion Dollar Investment
Think Progress
Samantha Page

t seems that the rent really is too high, at least for the major oil and gas firms that have now cancelled their exploration leases in the Arctic. ConocoPhillips, ENI, and Iona have relinquished all their leases in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas off the coast of Alaska, according to new documents obtained in a Freedom of Information Act request filed by advocacy group Oceana. “The decisions to give up leases reflect both environmental and economic realities of operating in a remote and unforgiving environment like the Arctic,” Michael LeVine, senior counsel for Oceana, told ThinkProgress. Statoil, which also had leases in the region, had previously relinquished all its leases, and Shell has relinquished all but one block, where it has already done exploratory drilling, he said.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Canada Gas Price Plunges as Wildfires Shut Oil-Sands Output
Bloomberg


A bad start to the year for Canadian natural gas producers is getting worse after wildfires in northern Alberta knocked out oil-sands operations that represent a key source of demand. Spot gas prices in Western Canada have been cut by more than half after oil-sands developers curtailed about 40 percent of their supply, reducing the amount of gas used to generate power for drilling and upgrading projects. Canada’s AECO spot gas fell to 53 cents U.S. per gigajoule on Monday, the lowest closing price since 1997, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Appeals Court upholds denial of frack sand mine permit
WQOW.com


MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A Wisconsin appeals court has upheld a Trempealeau County decision denying a permit to open a new sand mine for use in hydraulic fracking. The 3rd District Court of Appeals on Tuesday ruled against Iowa-based AllEnergy Sand. It had argued that a Trempealeau County environmental and land use committee in 2013 wrongly denied its permit to open the 550-acre sand mine and processing plant. A circuit court had affirmed the county committee's action in January 2015 and the appeals court upheld that ruling Tuesday, saying the "decision was supported by substantial evidence."  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
North Dakota contaminated with radioactive materials from fracking – study
RT
Lucy Nicholson / Reuters

A new study has revealed significant contamination of soil and water in North Dakota from radioactive materials, heavy metals and corrosive salts as a result of oil and gas wastewater spills. The Duke University research, published in Environmental Science and Technology, highlights the possible health implications for humans and wildlife from the 3,900 reported brine spills in the region since the rise of fracking in 2007.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
France may ban US fracked gas imports
The Hill
Timothy Cama

France is examining how it could legally ban the import of shale natural gas from the United States. Ségolène Royal, France’s minister of energy, told lawmakers in the National Assembly Tuesday that because France has banned hydraulic fracturing within its own borders, it should also prohibit fracked gas imports, according to AFP. The issue has arisen because two companies, Électricité de France and Engie, have signed contracts to buy liquefied natural gas from the United States, where most of it comes from fracked wells. “I’m going to examine legally how we can prohibit the import of shale gas, and in any case, these businesses will have to shift towards other markets to import only conventional gas,” Royal said.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Newfield Stream Water Testing to Resume
Ithaca.com
Jaime Cone

At a meeting of the Newfield Town Board April 28, the board heard a presentation by Stephen Penningroth, Executive Director of the Community Science Institute in Ithaca, and agreed to resume participation in the institute’s water testing program. CSI is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to protecting communities’ water resources. It’s comprised of about 40 individuals and four educational groups that collect water from 10 streams within the Cayuga Lake, Seneca Lake and Susquehanna River Watersheds. They collect from 15 sites on each stream and test the samples for phosphorus, coliform bacteria and E.coli. Penningroth explained that CSI has three branches: it has a certified water testing lab, a network of volunteer water monitoring partnerships, and a public online database of the water testing results.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
In Novel Tactic on Climate Change, Citizens Sue Their Governments
NY Times
John Schwartz

Global warming is already disrupting the planet’s weather. Now it is having an impact on the courts, as well, as adults and children around the world try to enlist the judiciary in their efforts to blunt climate change. In the United States, an environmental law nonprofit is suing the federal government on behalf of 21 young plaintiffs. Individuals in Pakistan and New Zealand have sued to force their governments to take stronger action to fight climate change. A farmer in Peru has sued a giant German energy utility over its part in causing global warming. And while the arguments can be unconventional and surprising, some of the suits are making progress. Last month, a federal magistrate judge in Oregon startled many legal experts by allowing the lawsuit filed on behalf of 21 teenagers and children to go forward, despite motions from the Obama administration and fossil fuel companies to dismiss it; the suit would force the government to take more aggressive action against climate change. The ruling by the magistrate judge, Thomas M. Coffin, now goes to Federal District Court to be accepted or rejected.  [Full Story]

May 10, 2016
Suzanne Almeida: Protect public from environmental hazards of gas, oil drilling
The Morning Call
Suzanne Almeida Opinion

Over the last five years, the Department of Environmental Protection has worked with environmental groups, gas and oil industry leaders, and Pennsylvanians from across the commonwealth to develop much needed updates to our oil and gas drilling regulations. But many lawmakers in Harrisburg are determined to stymie the implementation of these much-needed regulations, seemingly at the bidding of the oil and gas industry.   [Full Story]

May 9, 2016
Riverkeeper petitions DRBC to implement decades-old rule
New Jersey Herald
Bruce A. Scruton

The Delaware Riverkeeper is asking the Delaware River Basin Commission to fully implement a program established 25 years ago but not yet fully implemented. The commission was established to oversee the Delaware River watershed, which includes parts of five states and provides the drinking water for 15 million people. The petition, filed last week, calls on the commission to finally put in place its Special Protection Waters Program, first established in 1990, and which saw the Middle and Upper Delaware River designated as Special Protection Waters in 1992.  [Full Story]

May 9, 2016
Evidence of Unconventional Oil and Gas Wastewater Found in Surface Waters near Underground Injection Site
USGS
Press Release

These are the first published studies to demonstrate water-quality impacts to a surface stream due to activities at an unconventional oil and gas wastewater deep well injection disposal site. Evidence indicating the presence of wastewaters from unconventional oil and gas production was found in surface waters and sediments near an underground injection well near Fayetteville, West Virginia, according to two recent studies by the U.S. Geological Survey, University of Missouri, and Duke University. These are the first published studies to demonstrate water-quality impacts to a surface stream due to activities at an unconventional oil and gas wastewater deep well injection disposal site. The studies did not assess how the wastewaters were able to migrate from the disposal site to the surface stream. The unconventional oil and gas wastewater that was injected in the site came from coalbed methane and shale gas wells.  [Full Story]

May 9, 2016
US Oil Rig Count Falls for the Seventh Week to All-Time Low
Nasdaq


In its weekly release, Houston-based oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. BHI reported another record fall in the U.S. rig count (number of rigs searching for oil and gas in the country) from the previous week. The decline stemmed mainly from a lower number of oil-directed rigs. The West Texas Intermediate (WTI) oil futures are currently trading at around $44 per barrel.   [Full Story]

May 9, 2016
Duke Study: Rivers Contaminated With Radium and Lead From Thousands of Fracking Wastewater Spills
EcoWatch
Sharon Kelly

Thousands of oil and gas industry wastewater spills in North Dakota have caused “widespread” contamination from radioactive materials, heavy metals and corrosive salts, putting the health of people and wildlife at risk, researchers from Duke University concluded in a newly released peer-reviewed study.   [Full Story]

May 9, 2016
NJ COULD ASK FEDS TO RETHINK POLICIES ON SITING INTERSTATE PIPELINES
NJ Spotlight
Tom Johnson

Laws governing Federal Energy Regulatory Commission date back to 1938, too old to deal with aggressive pipeline expansion, critics claim A pipeline construction site in Northeast Pennsylvania. Amid a growing outcry against the expansion of natural-gas pipelines, a New Jersey legislator wants to press the federal government to revamp the laws governing approval of interstate energy projects.  [Full Story]

May 8, 2016
Silent sandbox: Once booming frac sand industry continues major downturn
Leader-Telegram


This should be the time of year when the frac sand mines that dot western Wisconsin are buzzing with activity after a seasonal winter slowdown. Instead, most of the facilities in the once-booming sand mining sector sit dormant, with skeleton crews occasionally stopping by to ensure the lights are still working and groundwater runoff is properly contained.  [Full Story]

May 8, 2016
Fracking fallout continues in Denton
Watchdog
Mark Lisheron

Denton voters sent a mixed message to its city government Saturday, returning one city council member who had been the object of a recall and replacing another council veteran.  [Full Story]

May 8, 2016
When everything starts to shake, rattle and roll 60 Minutes correspondent Bill Whitaker and producer David Schneider, a former and current Californian, respectively, are no strangers to earthquakes
CBS News


For his story on 60 Minutes this week, Schneider had a chance to investigate earthquakes in another part of the country: Oklahoma, where oil and gas companies are pumping billions of gallons of wastewater into the ground, which scientists say is prompting a growing spate of earthquakes. "What makes the earthquakes in Oklahoma so shocking is that they are man-made," says correspondent Bill Whitaker.   [Full Story]

May 8, 2016
Groundwater Contamination from Fracking Changes over Time: Study
The Tyee
Andrew Nikiforuk

A new Texas study has found that horizontal oil wells fractured by the injection of high volumes of chemicals, sand, and water contaminate nearby water wells with a variety of heavy metals and toxic chemicals that fluctuate over time. In the last decade, North America's $40-billion fracking industry has punctured uneconomic or 'unconventional' rock formations from British Columbia to Texas with long lateral wells that extend for miles underground.  [Full Story]

May 7, 2016
Wave of Fossil Fuel Project Cancellations Follows Keystone XL Rejection
Inside Climate News
Zahra Hirjii

Grassroots climate activists have been effective in stirring public opposition; industry mostly sees market forces at play. Six months after the Obama administration rejected the Keystone XL pipeline, at least 20 other proposed energy projects—mines, pipelines, plants, related rail projects and export terminals—have been canceled, rejected or delayed, according to research compiled and mapped by InsideClimate News.   [Full Story]

May 7, 2016
Environmentalists flood FERC with motions to intervene, comments against Texas LNG project
San Antonio Business Journal
Zahra Hirji

Environmentalists and their allies have flooded federal regulators with motions to intervene and comments opposing the proposed Texas LNG project in the Port of Brownsville. Texas LNG filed their official application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on March 31 asking regulators for permission to export natural gas extracted from the Eagle Ford Shale region south of San Antonio to overseas customers. The Houston-based company's filing triggered a three-week barrage of comments and motions to intervene that started in mid-April and had a Thursday afternoon deadline. The motions can be used to set up the filer as a party in future legal action.   [Full Story]

May 6, 2016
Earthquake capital of continental U.S.: Oklahoma
CBS News


Oklahomans are getting tired of the ground shaking under their feet. Last year, the state set a record for earthquakes with 907 registering a magnitude of 3 or more. It's causing anxiety, damage and residents to rethink one of the state's biggest industries -- oil and gas production -- which scientists say is causing nearly all the quakes. Bill Whitaker goes to Oklahoma, now the capital of earthquake activity in the continental U.S., to report the story for the next edition of 60 Minutes, Sunday, May 8 at 7 p.m. ET/PT. "I woke up scared to death, praying that the house wouldn't fall down. I couldn't believe that the windows didn't shatter," says Melinda Olbert of a 4.3 quake in Edmund, Oklahoma, in December. She and Kathy Matthews, a friend and Edmund resident, are using smartphone apps to monitor the size and location of quakes around the state. "Cherokee, Enid, Fairview, Medford, Stillwater. All in one 24-hour period; one hour ago, one hour ago, two," Matthews tells Whitaker, who asks whether she is nervous. "It's no way to live. It's no way to live," she says.  [Full Story]

May 6, 2016
Stop the Fracking Lies: Public and Workers Deserve Truth and Solutions About Energy
Huffington Post
Maya K. van Rossum, the Delaware Riverkeeper

The future of the coal and fracking industries and jobs in these industries has been in the news a lot these past days. While we must be mindful of the people who currently depend on these industries for their livelihoods, the fact remains that this work is harmful. People are losing their health, the quality of their lives, the safety of their children, the value and sanctity of their homes, the clean water they need to drink and the healthy air they need to breathe. The cost of continued dependence on fossil fuels is far too great to support any longer. While we must support new jobs for fossil fuel workers, these jobs cannot be in the continued use or expansion of fossil fuels and its infrastructure. The research on this issue is clear.  [Full Story]

May 6, 2016
Cuomo Loyalist With Troubled Finances Is at Center of U.S. Inquiry
The New York Times
VIVIAN YEE and JESSE McKINLEY

ALBANY — As a former aide to both Andrew M. Cuomo and his father, Todd R. Howe built a reputation as a prominent lobbyist in Albany and Washington, with top clients like the Metropolitan Museum of Art and major developers in upstate New York. Trading on his connections as a Cuomo loyalist, Mr. Howe was seen by many as a reliable conduit to the governor’s office. Now, amid a sprawling federal investigation into the Cuomo administration’s marquee economic development projects, he has emerged as one of its top focal points. The allegations against Mr. Howe, who has not been charged with a crime, are not clear. But a review of court documents and public records found that his professional persona masked a history of chaotic and slipshod financial dealings, including a 2003 bankruptcy and nearly $400,000 in federal tax liens and other judgments against him.   [Full Story]

May 6, 2016
Wind and Solar Outpaced Fossil Fuels Again Even in Republican-Led States Fighting Climate Action
EcoWatch
Climate Nexus

A new analysis from the U.S Department of Energy reveals that despite GOP opposition to wind and solar incentives, many of their home states, such as Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas, have benefited the most from the shift to renewables.  [Full Story]

May 6, 2016
Fracking From Bakken Oilfield Single-Handedly Responsible for Global Rise in Ethane
EcoWatch
Sharon Kelly

The Bakken shale oilfield is single-handedly responsible for most of a mysterious global rise in atmospheric ethane—a pollutant that can harm human health and heat the atmosphere further—peer-reviewed research published last week reveals.  [Full Story]

May 6, 2016
Connection to federal probe adds fuel to NY power plant opposition
North Country Public Radio
Karen DeWitt

Opponents of a planned fracked gas power plant in the Hudson Valley hope the U.S. Attorney will investigate decisions made in the permitting process for the plant now that it was revealed the wife of a former top aide to Cuomo took payments from the lead engineering firm in the project and her husband is the subject of a federal probe.  [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Pennsylvania Township First To Legalize Civil Disobedience & ‘Bad Boy’ Tim DeChristopher Has Their Back
Public Herald


A bold move by a community Public Herald has been following for years – Grant Township – just made historic news [again] by legalizing civil disobedience. Last night [May 3], Grant Township in Indiana County, Pennsylvania made a bit of history. The municipality passed a local law legalizing civil disobedience. According to the new law, anyone who commits a nonviolent act of civil disobedience in order to protect the community’s rights under its Home Rule Charter has the legal right to do so – but not only that – the law also prohibits “any private or public actor from bringing criminal charges or filing any civil or other criminal action against those participating in nonviolent direct action.”  [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Annals of the ‘Methane Age': Gas from Fracked Wells No Longer ‘Unconventional’
The New York Times
ANDREW C. REVKIN

The Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration has posted a short update on trends in natural gas production in the United States that’s worth noting simply because it illustrates the profound nature of the energy transitions that are being propelled by the exploitation of shale deposits using hydraulic fracturing, known best as fracking, along with horizontal drilling. There are, of course a host of issues accompanying the dawn of what Cesare Marchetti and others, as far back as 1986, called “The Methane Age” (natural gas being primarily methane).   [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Oil Giants Would Be Worth More by Drilling Less in a Low-Carbon World, Analysts Say
Inside Climate News
Phil McKenna

Seven major oil and gas companies could increase their collective value by roughly $100 billion if they bring their future investments in oil and gas fields in line with plans to limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius, according to a new assessment. Investors "may be surprised at just how much value can be created by oil and gas companies in a carbon-constrained scenario," said the report, published Wednesday by the Carbon Tracker Initiative, a think tank based in London. At current oil prices, the group estimated that the portfolio of the combined majors' oil and gas projects would be worth about $140 billion more if they left enough fuels in the ground to keep the world within the carbon budget for 2 degrees. Even if oil prices rebounded to $100 per barrel, sticking to the 2-degree target would produce $55 billion higher valuations than a business-as-usual approach.  [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Drilling company details safety protocols for Upper Burrell residents
TribLive
Liz Hayes

Amid an ongoing debate in Upper Burrell over the safest distance between homes and natural gas wells, a drilling company detailed to residents its safety protocols. Mike Hillebrand of Murrysville, Huntley & Huntley's chief operating officer, spoke for nearly two hours Wednesday night on the process and equipment used by the Monroeville-based drilling company to tap natural gas in deep shale formations.   [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Columnist bemoans the anti-climate change energy bill
Post Independent
Randy Fricke

Congress will soon send a new energy bill to President Obama. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, chairwoman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, announced on April 20 the 85-12 passage of the Senate’s bill, the “Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2016.” Even though the bill contains provisions to boost renewable energy such as solar, wind, hydropower and geothermal, it is largely designed to push America to energy independence through oil and natural gas production.   [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
New Analysis: In 2015, Oil and Gas Companies Reported Four Spills a Day in New Mexico
KRWG


Commentary: Oil and gas companies in New Mexico were responsible for 1,477 reported oil, gas, and other chemical spills in 2015, according to the New Mexico Toxic Release Tracker released today by the Center for Western Priorities. The new analysis, which summarizes public spills data from theNew Mexico Oil Conservation Division, finds that oil and gas companies reported an average of four spills per day in 2015.   [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Offshore Seismic Blasting Remains A Serious Concern
The Dispatch


OCEAN CITY — While the Obama administration announced in March it was abandoning plans to open a vast swath of ocean off the mid-Atlantic coast as close as 20 miles from the resort for offshore drilling for oil and natural gas, the threat of seismic air gun blasting to find those very reserves remains a real threat.  [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Newfield buys 42,000 acres in Oklahoma from Chesapeake
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

From a press release today: Newfield to acquire an additional 42,000 net acres in STACK Post transaction, Newfield to have more than 350,000 net acres in core STACK and SCOOP THE WOODLANDS, Texas, May 5, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Newfield Exploration Company (NYSE: NFX) today signed a definitive purchase and sale agreement with a subsidiary of Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE: CHK) to acquire approximately 42,000 net acres in the Anadarko Basin STACK play for $470 million. The transaction will have an effective date of April 1, 2016 and closing is subject to customary adjustments. Newfield expects to fund the transaction with cash on hand and closing is planned for the second quarter of 2016.   [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Is Fracking For Gas Dirty Enough For A Coal Resurgence?
Forbes
James Conca

Coal and natural gas together produce two-thirds of our electricity, almost equally split between them. Nuclear produces 19%, hydro produces 7%, and renewables about 7%. Oil produces even more energy than either coal or gas, but it is used almost entirely for transportation. So if coal is still producing a third of our electricity, why is the coal industry going bankrupt? Sure, coal used to produce about 50% of our electricity just ten years ago, but 33% is still the largest share of this market, tied with natural gas.  [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Groups Sue EPA Demanding Stricter Fracking Waste Rules
EcoWatch
NRDC

A coalition of community and environmental organizations filed a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Wednesday calling for regulations to stop oil and gas companies from disposing and handling drilling and fracking wastes in ways that threaten public health and the environment.   [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Should Florida ‘frack’ its limestone for oil and gas? Two geophysicists weigh in
Raw Story
Robert McNamara

Florida is on the front lines of a debate over the spread of the controversial drilling technique hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which raises a crucial question: are the state’s unique geology and hydrology safe for expanded oil and gas drilling?   [Full Story]

May 5, 2016
Letter: Cuomo counsel declares energy company off-limits
Times Union
Casey Seiler

Letter: Cuomo counsel declares energy company off-limits By Casey Seiler, Capitol bureau chief on May 5, 2016 at 3:45 PM 20 In response to Thursday’s news conference by opponents of the Competitive Power Ventures’ natural-gas-fueled plant in Orange County, the Cuomo administration released a letter sent Monday by Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Counsel Alphonso David to the leaders of the New York Power Authority, the chair of the state Public Service Commission and the commissioners of the state Department of Environmental Conservation. The message of the letter, boiled down: Until further notice, New York State is not doing business with CPV. The company has been connected to salary paid to the wife of Cuomo’s former executive deputy secretary, Joe Percoco. It has said it is cooperating with the investigation by U.S. Attorney for the Southern District Preet Bharara.  [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
New hydraulic fracturing regulations blocked by Wyoming Judge
The Branding Iron
Alexx Sanchez

New regulations for hydraulic fracking implemented by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management have been blocked by a U.S. District Judge from Wyoming. According to the case file, a preliminary injunction was ordered last year by U.S. District Judge Scott W. Skavdahl. It was ordered after the BLM issued its final version of its regulations applying to hydraulic fracturing on federal and Native American lands. The regulations would focus on three aspects related to fracking including, wellbore construction, chemical disclosures and water management. The court case states in order for the petitioners to obtain a preliminary injunction, they must show “a likelihood of success on the merits, that they will likely suffer irreparable harm, that the balance of equities tips in their favor and that the injunction is in the public interest.” In this particular case, the petitioners are the states of Wyoming, Colorado, North Dakota and Utah, along with the Ute Indian Tribe.  [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Cost estimate of Los Angeles-area gas leak hits $665 million
Washington Post
Brian Melley

LOS ANGELES — The estimated cost of a massive gas well blowout that spewed methane uncontrollably for nearly four months and uprooted 8,000 Los Angeles families has more than doubled to $665 million, Sempra Energy announced Wednesday.   [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
EQT announces intent to expand natural gas exploration in North Central West Virginia
MetroNews


PITTSBURGH, Pa. — An energy company has made an agreement to acquire land in West Virginia to expand its natural gas exploration.   [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
PA House panel torches natural gas rules
The Morning Call
Laura Legere

HARRISBURG — A House committee moved to block updated state rules for oil and gas operations, with opponents of the regulations saying the process of drafting the updates was so flawed that it has to be restarted.   [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Environmental groups sue EPA, seek stricter rules over fracking waste linked to earthquakes
The Washington Post
Brady Dennis

A collection of environmental advocacy groups on Wednesday sued the Environmental Protection Agency, saying the government has failed to adequately regulate the disposal of waste generated by oil and gas drilling. In particular, the lawsuit seeks to force the agency to impose stricter rules on the disposal of wastewater, including that from hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The wastewater is typically pumped into underground wells — a practice that has been linked to a growing number of earthquakes in Oklahoma, Colorado, Ohio and other states. The groups argue that the EPA has neglected to revise its existing rules for nearly three decades, despite acknowledging in the late 1980s that stricter requirements were needed for the handling of oil and gas drilling waste.   [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Foundations poured, but Cuomo says plant in probe still needs approvals
PoliticoNewYork
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — Gov. Andrew Cuomo said a power plant that is at the center of a federal corruption probe still needs more approvals from the state, even though construction crews are now pouring its foundation. Competitive Power Ventures already is at work on a proposed $1 billion 650-megawatt natural gas-fired power plant in Wawayanda, Orange County. U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is looking into ties between the plant and Cuomo administration figures. The governor's office has now cut off contact with CPV.  [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Groups Sue EPA Over Dangerous Drilling and Fracking Waste
EARTHWORKS
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A coalition of community and environmental organizations filed a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today calling for regulations to stop oil and gas companies from disposing and handling drilling and fracking wastes in ways that threaten public health and the environment. The organizations are pushing EPA to issue rules that address problems including the disposal of fracking wastewater in underground injection wells, which accept hundreds of millions of gallons of oil and gas wastewater and have been linked to numerous earthquakes in Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas.  [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Greens sue EPA over fracking waste
The Hill
Timothy Cama

Environmental groups are suing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to try to compel better regulation of waste fluids from hydraulic fracturing. The groups, led by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the Environmental Integrity Project, said regulations are about 30 years overdue to address potential groundwater contamination, earthquakes and other problems associated with fracking waste.   [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Climate change is corroding our values, says Naomi Klein
The Guardian
John Vidal

Climate change is spawning injustice, racism, intolerance and wars, according to author and political activist Naomi Klein. “It is not about things getting hotter and wetter but things getting meaner and uglier, unless we change the corrosive values that are pitting people against each other,” she said in a lecture held in memory of Palestinian literary critic and political activist Edward Said at the Royal Festival Hall in London’s Southbank Centre on Wednesday. “Fossil fuels, which are the principal driver of climate change, require the sacrifice of whole regions and people. Sacrificial zones like the Niger delta and the tar sands in Alberta, Canada, dot the world.  [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Petition to put anti-fracking measure on ballot delivered to Elections Department
Montere Herald
James Herrera

Salinas >> The group Protect Monterey County delivered 16,108 signatures Wednesday to the Monterey County Elections Department in support of putting an initiative on the November ballot to ban fracking and dangerous oil production practices in the county.   [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Possible Flaw In Weld Coating Cited In Salem Twp. Pipeline Blast
CBS Pittsburgh


SALEM TOWNSHIP (KDKA/AP) — Investigators have found evidence of corrosion on a natural gas pipeline that exploded in a massive fireball in Westmoreland County last week, scorching trees a quarter-mile away, damaging homes and burning a fleeing homeowner, the federal pipeline safety agency said Wednesday. The cause of Friday’s blast remains unknown, but the corrosion indicates a “possible flaw” in the coating material applied to a pair of welded joints, one at the point of failure and another excavated after the explosion, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration said in a corrective order issued to the pipeline operator.  [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Filmmaker, citizens group challenge National Fuel’s proposed pipeline project
Buffalo News
T J Pignataro

Josh Fox traveled the world seeking answers about climate change for his new documentary. Fox ground his way through jungles in Peru and Ecuador, rode a homemade pontoon boat by South Pacific islands, interviewed asthmatic children in the smog of hyper-industrialized Beijing and waded through Superstorm Sandy’s rubble on Rockaway Beach.   [Full Story]

May 4, 2016
Pipeline owner told to correct issues after blast
Pittsburgh Business Times
Paul J. Gough

The federal agency that regulates pipelines on Wednesday ordered the owner of the line that blew up and caught fire last Friday in Salem Township to take corrective action to ensure safety.   [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Group urges Cuomo to halt CPV project Protect Orange County also wants feds to expand investigation
Times Herald Record
James Nani

WAWAYANDA — Opponents of a $900 million natural-gas fired energy plant want Gov. Andrew Cuomo to yank its state permits and order work to be halted in light of an ongoing federal probe targeting Cuomo's former aides and their alleged ties to the company. The group, called Protect Orange County, has also called on U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara to expand his office's probe into the process that approved Competitive Power Ventures' plant, which is being built off Route 6. Opponents argue the power plant will have health and safety impacts on local residents and that the Town of Wawayanda should not have led the environmental review. "We urge U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara to cast as wide a net as possible and scrutinize every approval issued and every decision maker involved at every layer of government," the group said in a news release.   [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Group to Submit Petitions for Anti-Fracking Initiative to Monterey County Elections Office
Indy Bay


Relying on the power of over 250 volunteers, the grassroots group, Protect Monterey County, has collected over 15,000 signatures for their initiative, Protect Our Water: Ban Fracking and Limit Risky Oil Operations. This is more than double the number of signatures required to qualify the initiative for the November 2016 ballot (7,391 signatures). No paid signature gatherers were employed in this seven week effort. This historic petition drive has engaged more volunteers than any other countywide initiative in recent memory. Photo: Luana of Protect Monterey County stacking petitions.   [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Bloomberg Law: Colorado Fracking Bans Thrown Out (Audio)
Bloomberg Law


Charles Warren, a partner at Kramer, Levin, Naftalis and Frankel, and Stpehen Miller, a professor at the University of Idaho College of Law, discuss a Colorado Supreme Court decision, which ruled that some municipalities’ bans on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, were "invalid and unenforceable." The decisions in uphold lower court rulings and are a blow to cities along Colorado’s shale-rich Front Range, which have sought to limit fracking for environmental and safety reasons over the last few years. They speak with Bloomberg Law host June Grasso on Bloomberg Radio’s "Bloomberg Law."  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Fossil Fuels on Federal Lands: Phase-Out Needed for Climate Goals, Study Says
Inside Climate News
John H. Cushman, Jr.

Ending federal leasing program could reduce global emissions of carbon dioxide by 100 million tons, researchers find. Phasing out fossil fuel leases on public lands would be one of the most significant new policies the United States could adopt to help meet international climate goals, according to a new report.   [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
NY denial 'potentially fatal' for Constitution gas line, analyst says
SNL
Sean Sullivan

New York's refusal to issue a key water permit for Constitution Pipeline Co. LLC could signal the end for the proposed interstate natural gas pipeline, according to an energy analyst who follows such projects. "From our perspective, Constitution is significant because it's such a rare thing for a pipeline to be denied a water quality certification," Rob Rains, an analyst with the policy and financial research firm Washington Analysis LLC, said in a recent interview. "This is potentially fatal for the project." Rains observed that the Constitution developers can appeal the decision, as they have indicated they will, but "that is probably a fruitless effort." Even if the developers are successful, the federal appeals court would likely send the case back for a second determination by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and Rains said he does not see the agency changing its finding. He noted that in the April 22 decision denying a Clean Water Act Section 401 certificate for the 124-mile pipeline project, the agency did not appear to want to help Constitution strengthen its application.   [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
NIEHS helps write landmark report on climate change and human health
NIH
Press Release

A first of its kind report, “ The Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States: A Scientific Assessment,” was unveiled April 4 at the White House, and NIEHS played a vital role in its development. John Balbus, M.D., NIEHS senior advisor for public health, represented the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as one of 16 lead authors, contributing to the introduction and the chapter on populations of concern. He joined several other authors in a panel discussion at the White House event. Health impacts numerous and varied “The health impacts of climate change are numerous and touch on almost all aspects of public health,” said Balbus (see sidebar). “This report makes it clear that we need to do a better job of identifying those impacts and incorporating them into the mainstream of public health.”  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
To Increase Use of Renewables, Owners Need to Understand Energy Use in Their Buildings
NY Times
Andrew Chen

Renewable energy is undoubtedly our future, but getting there isn’t as easy as flicking a light switch. One big impediment is that building owners often don’t know just how much energy and water is consumed in their buildings, how much should be consumed, and how much is wasted. Most building owners and managers pay their utility bills as a matter of routine, with little understanding of how much energy is being used and why. Absent such an understanding, they fail to see how making different energy choices will be relevant to them. But these building owners are a critical population to persuade in the shift toward renewables. About 40 percent of total U.S. energy consumption last year came from residential and commercial buildings, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Shifting to renewable energies like solar and wind requires a willingness to do business differently. And the first step to embrace these new energy sources is to have a clear understanding of how energy is currently used and identify those buildings where efficiency upgrades and investments in renewables can generate the highest returns.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
What’s Holding Back Renewable Energy?
NY Times
Opinion

Oxford researchers recently predicted precipitous growth in green energy over the next 10 to 15 years, decreasing global need for fossil fuels. Yet, the largest renewable energy company in the world, SunEdison, just filed for bankruptcy on the heels of the fall of another clean energy giant, Abengoa. Is the renewable energy sector in trouble? What is holding back more immediate success in the industry?  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Subsidies in the Wrong Places Skew Renewable Energy’s Power
NY Times
Joseph Aldy

Renewable power has experienced tremendous growth: Wind and solar’s share of total U.S. power generation increased to 5 percent in 2015 from less than 0.5 percent in 2005. This growth reflects both innovation driving down costs and an array of subsidies, including tax credits and grants (about 30 percent of investment costs), accelerated depreciation (15 percent of investment costs), loan guarantees (7 percent of investment costs), and state renewable power mandates, which create valuable credits – worth as much as 50 cents per kilowatt hour for solar in Massachusetts and New Jersey – that complement the revenue stream from power sales. Continued investment in renewable power, however, must confront investment challenges in the power sector. Innovation has driven lower costs for wind, solar and their competitors. The fracking revolution has drastically lowered the cost of U.S. natural gas, with the price of natural gas delivered to the power sector in 2015 equal to one-third the price in 2008. As the costs of producing power have fallen, so has the demand for electricity. Since 2010, the U.S. economy has grown 11 percent, but electricity consumption has fallen by 1 percent in part because of subsidies and standards targeting energy efficiency. The absence of a growing power market reduces the need for utilities to invest in new power generation. In some parts of the country, the costs of new wind and solar may appear competitive with new coal or natural gas facilities, but new renewable investment effectively competes with existing, lower-cost power plants.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
House committee votes to block updated drilling rules
Pittsburgh Post Gazette
Laura Legere

HARRISBURG — A House committee moved to block updated state rules for oil and gas operations today, with opponents of the regulations saying the process of drafting the updates was so flawed that it has to be restarted. The House Environmental Resources and Energy committee voted largely along party lines, with three Democrats from the southwest joining the Republican majority, to advance a resolution that would bar the diverse package of updates from taking effect. State environmental regulators have been developing the revised rules for both Marcellus Shale and conventional oil and gas operations for five years, including two phases of public review. The state’s Independent Regulatory Review Commission voted on April 21 that the proposed rules are in the public interest, but the state’s regulatory process allows legislators to try to override that endorsement. The committee’s resolution says the proposed regulations violate laws that require separate treatment and special consideration for the small businesses that operate traditional, shallow oil and gas wells compared to large-scale shale operations.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Offshore drilling regulator warns of bolt failures in Gulf of Mexico
Fuel Fix
James Osborne

The federal government’s top offshore drilling regulator warned Tuesday that metal bolts used to hold together drilling equipment under the surface of the ocean were failing faster than anticipated. Brian Salerno, director of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, said so far the failures had not resulted in any major oil leaks or other incidents but the rapid corrosion concerned inspectors. “They’re very simple and design and concept but they’re critical,” he said during a press conference at the Offshore Technology Conference in Houston. “If a vital connection point fails, the entire system is compromised.”  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
House panel votes to block drilling regulations
State Impact PA
Marie Cusick

For the second time in less than a month, a House committee has voted to block tougher regulations aimed at Pennsylvania’s oil and gas industry. It’s the latest move in the ongoing battle over the rules between the Republican-led legislature and Governor Tom Wolf’s Democratic administration. The state Department of Environmental Protection has been working to modernize the regulations for five years. Last month, a state commission gave its approval. On Tuesday the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee voted to disapprove of the regulations. Rep. John Maher (R- Allegheny) chairs the committee, and says he has had trouble getting the Wolf administration to listen to his concerns, which include everything from correcting typos in the text of the regulations to questions about the legality of DEP’s procedure.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Significant contamination at 3,900 fracking spill sites in North Dakota alone
treehugger
Sami Grover

There's no doubt that fracking has provided a boost to the North Dakota economy in recent years, but at what cost? New research from Duke University scientists has mapped 3,900 fracking spill sites in North Dakota, analyzing both water and soil around these locations and finding significant, persistent pollution levels that could have serious implications for human and environmental health alike. Researchers found high levels of ammonium, selenium, lead and other toxic contaminants as well as high salt levels and radium, a naturally occurring radioactive element. And the problem appears to be persistent—pollutant levels regularly exceeded federal safety limits for safe drinking water or aquatic health, and at one site at least, the researchers were still able to detect high levels of contaminants in spill water four years after the spill occurred. This problem is apparently exacerbated by the fact that, unlike oil, many of the inorganic chemicals found in the wastewater are resistant to biodegradation, creating a long-term legacy of contamination.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Colorado’s battle over regulating fracking shifts to ballot
Seattle Times
Dan Elliot AP

DENVER (AP) — Colorado’s battle over who should regulate fracking — and how much — now shifts to the November election after the state Supreme Court overturned attempts by local governments to impose their own rules. The court ruled Monday that a ban on fracking in Longmont and a five-year moratorium in Fort Collins are invalid because they conflict with state law. State officials and the industry argued the state has the primary authority to regulate energy, not local governments. It wasn’t the end of the debate, however. Coloradans face a loud and fierce campaign over fracking this fall if activists succeed in getting any constitutional amendments on the ballot to restrict oil and gas drilling or give local governments the authority to do so.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
How Fracking Funds the Radical Right
The New Republic
AUDREA LIM

Harold Hamm, as Gary Sernovitz describes him in The Green and the Black, is a quintessential rags-to-riches American success story. The “shack-raised Hamm ‘talked like a hick’” and also repaired cars and pumped gas before becoming an Oklahoma oilman, with decades of successes and failures that amounted to a fairly unextraordinary career. Then horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing—“fracking”—technology arrived. This could unlock the vast oil and gas reserves throughout America that were trapped beneath impermeable shale rocks—in the Bakken, Eagle Ford, Permian, and Marcellus regions—and that had long ago been written off by industry as inaccessible, second-rate. In fact, by the twenty-first century, all the onshore reserves in the lower 48 were thought to be near tapped out. But within less than a decade, the “shale revolution”—or fracking boom—transformed the U.S. into the world’s leading producer of oil and gas.   [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Fed Survey Finds Banks Tightening Lending to Energy Firms
Bloomberg BNA
Jeff Bater

May 2 — Banks are tightening lending policies on companies in the energy sector and restructuring loans, the Federal Reserve found in a survey released May 2. In its quarterly report on bank lending practices, the Fed included responses by lenders to special questions about credit to firms in the oil and natural gas drilling or extraction sector. Regulators are closely watching banks' exposure to falling oil prices . Most U.S. banks that made loans to energy firms indicated that such lending accounts for less than 5 percent of their outstanding commercial and industrial (C&I) loans, according to the Fed's April 2016 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
New York State Refuses Permit for Constitution Pipeline in Major Victory for Anti-Fracking Organizers
DeSmogBlog
Sharon Kelly

In a striking victory for grassroots environmental and community groups, New York state's Department of Environmental Conservation announced on April 22 that it had denied a key permit for a pipeline that would have carried fracked gas from Pennsylvania to planned natural gas export facilities in New York state. The Constitution Pipeline, planned to stretch 125 feet wide and 124 miles long starting near Dimock, PA and crossing over 275 streams and waterways, would have required the cutting of as many as 700,000 trees in Pennsylvania and New York, part of a build-out project estimated to cost investors as much as $1 billion. But in recent months, the project faced escalating opposition, not only from larger environmental nonprofits, but also from a coalition of local landowners and activists who adopted tactics ranging from collecting over 15,000 public comments for New York state's review of the project to civil disobedience at federal hearings.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
NYS Residents Demand Halting Spectra Energy’s AIM Gas Pipeline Construction After Spectra’s Massive Explosion
Yonkers Tribune
SUZANNAH GLIDDEN

NORTH SALEM, NY — May 3, 2016 — Frightened New York residents reacted to Spectra Energy’s massive methane gas explosion April 29, 2016, on its nearby Texas Eastern pipeline in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, by calling on Governor Cuomo and President Obama to immediately halt construction of Spectra Energy’s Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) pipeline and complete the NYS risk assessment.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Exxon ‘Knew Earlier, They Knew With Certainty and They Knew Globally’
FAIR


Janine Jackson: One hundred and seventy-four countries and the European Union signed a multilateral deal on climate change recently at UN headquarters in New York. We’re told that’s the largest number of first-day signatures ever to an international agreement. The Paris Agreement set several long-term climate goals, including holding average temperatures below a two-degree Celsius rise from pre-industrial levels. At the same time, David Powell of the New Economics Foundation notes that BP’s annual energy outlook confidently predicts fossil fuels will account for 80 percent of global energy usage in 2035. Powell’s conclusion is that given the speed and depth of the shift required, political will on climate is a prerequisite, and the fossil-fuel industry is banking on politicians not having the chutzpah to do what it takes to keep it in the ground.  [Full Story]

May 3, 2016
Pavillion fracking study seeps into court battle
WyoFile
Ellen M. Gilmer, E&E reporter

A controversial new study on water contamination from oil and gas development has made its way to a high-stakes legal battle over hydraulic fracturing. The question now is whether the court should consider it. The research, released last month, ties water pollution to oil and gas activity in Pavillion, Wyo. — the site of a yearslong investigation that was abandoned by U.S. EPA in 2013. A former EPA scientist now at Stanford University followed up on the agency’s work and determined that water wells in the small town were likely contaminated with fracking wastes stored in unlined pits (ClimateWire, April 4).   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Half of leading investors ignoring climate change: study
Reuters
Aly Song

Almost half of the world's top 500 investors are doing nothing to address climate change through their investments, a study showed on Monday. A report by the Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP), a not-for-profit organization aimed at improving the management of climate change, found that just under a fifth of the top investors - or 97 managing a total of $9.4 trillion in assets - were taking tangible steps to mitigate global warming   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Hilcorp Energy responds responsibly to 5 quakes
Vindy.com


The Greater Youngstown area certainly is no stranger to adversity tied to hydraulic fracturing for oil and natural gas. Who, after all, could ever forget the rocking New Year’s Eve in 2011 when Youngstown and its environs were jolted by the most powerful of a series of 12 earthquakes that the Ohio Department of Natural Resources later attributed to injection-well operations at D&L Energy?   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
EIA produces new maps of the Utica Shale play
Your Oil and Gas News


The U.S. Energy Information Administration has produced new maps that show the structure, thickness, and geologic setting of the Utica Shale play and the location of production wells. Production of oil and natural gas from the Utica play has increased since 2011, with more than 1,700 wells drilled as of January 2016. The Utica play includes both the Utica formation and the deeper Point Pleasant formation, each with its own characteristics.   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
NELSON JOINS OTHER SENATORS IN CALLING FOR SEISMIC TESTING TO END
WMFE
Amy Green

Bill Nelson is among more than a dozen U.S. senators calling on President Barack Obama to stop oil and natural gas exploration in the Atlantic Ocean. The central Florida democrat and other senators are speaking out against seismic testing.   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Colorado Supreme Court strikes down local fracking bans
Fox News
Associated Press

The Colorado Supreme Court struck down attempts by two cities to ban or delay fracking on Monday, a major victory for the oil and gas industry. ADVERTISEMENT The court ruled that a ban on fracking in Longmont and a five-year moratorium in Fort Collins are invalid because they conflict with state law. State officials and the industry argued the state has the primary authority to regulate energy, not local governments.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
How Fracking Funds the Radical Right The same fracking bosses are the heroes of one book and the villains of another.
New Republic
Audrea Lim

Harold Hamm, as Gary Sernovitz describes him in The Green and the Black, is a quintessential rags-to-riches American success story. The “shack-raised Hamm ‘talked like a hick’” and also repaired cars and pumped gas before becoming an Oklahoma oilman, with decades of successes and failures that amounted to a fairly unextraordinary career. Then horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing—“fracking”—technology arrived. This could unlock the vast oil and gas reserves throughout America that were trapped beneath impermeable shale rocks—in the Bakken, Eagle Ford, Permian, and Marcellus regions—and that had long ago been written off by industry as inaccessible, second-rate. In fact, by the twenty-first century, all the onshore reserves in the lower 48 were thought to be near tapped out. But within less than a decade, the “shale revolution”—or fracking boom—transformed the U.S. into the world’s leading producer of oil and gas.   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
LAW: Wyo. pollution study seeps into fracking rule battle
E & E Publishing
Ellen M. Gilmer

A controversial new study on water contamination from oil and gas development has made its way to a high-stakes legal battle over hydraulic fracturing. The question now is whether the court should consider it. The research, released last month, ties water pollution to oil and gas activity in Pavillion, Wyo. -- the site of a yearslong investigation that was abandoned by U.S. EPA in 2013.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Fracking foes won’t let go in Denton
Watchdog
Mark Lisheron

The moment of reckoning has come at different times for the people of Denton, Texas, as they wait in fear for the outcome of an election May 7.   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Energy report finds more people oppose fracking
Lancashire Evening Post


NTI-fracking campaigners have hailed a Government report which they say shows public support for fracking has fallen. Residents say that the latest in a series of wide-ranging reports on energy by the Department of Energy and Climate Change shows 19 per cent of people support shale gas energy, with 31 per cent opposing fracking outright. They say it is the highest level of opposition yet since the Government starting surveying public opinions on energy in its Public Attitudes Tracker in 2012.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Local anti-fracking movement continues to grow
Athens News
Bob Sheak

The local people and groups who continue to oppose fracking and injection wells have had mixed success against powerful fossil-fuel interests, federal and state government that are gung-ho about the expansion of fracking wherever there is natural gas.   [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
A Setback in Longmont Will Only Lead to More Victories We must keep up the pressure on decision-makers to keep fossil fuels in the ground.
Food & Water Watch
Wenonah Hauter

Colorado’s high court today struck down the rights of Coloradans to enact local fracking bans. It’s no surprise, given the massive sway of the oil and gas industry in the state. The suit was brought against Longmont (which passed a popular fracking ban in 2012) by Governor John Hickenlooper and his industry cronies. While it’s easy to be discouraged by this decision, the fact is, it will help activate citizens to pass statewide ballot measures to ban fracking in November. And let’s not forget: the movement to stop fossil fuel development just keeps winning.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
SUBPOENAS SENT TO GOVERNOR ANDREW CUOMO'S OFFICE IN HOPES OF STOPPING CONSTRUCTION OF GAS PLANT
ABC News
Dave Evans

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Construction on the CPV Power Plant in Orange County is well underway, but on Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered his staff to have no connection with the company, because of the possibility of improper lobbying, and undisclosed conflicts of interest. On Friday, sources told Eyewitness News one of the governor's closest friends and top assistance, Joe Percoco, who is now with MSG, is being investigated by Federal prosecutors and the FBI. 'Protect Orange County' has fought the plant for years.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Power company at center of probe backed Cuomo, sought contract
PoliticoNewYork
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — The company that proposed a power plant now at the center of U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara’s probe of the Cuomo administration has received a series of beneficial state approvals in recent years and was a generous donor to Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Competitive Power Ventures is now at work on a proposed $1 billion natural gas-fired power plant in Wawayanda, Orange County. As a result of Bharara’s probe, the administration has cut off contact with CPV, the Daily News has reported. Bharara is examining whether top Cuomo aide Joe Percoco received tens of thousands of dollars from CPV, the Wall Street Journal reported. Todd Howe, a lobbyist close to Cuomo who is also at the center of the investigation, has done work for CPV.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Halliburton and Baker Hughes scrap $28 billion merger
Reuters
Mike Stone

Oilfield services provider Halliburton Co (HAL.N) and smaller rival Baker Hughes Inc (BHI.N) announced the termination of their $28 billion merger deal on Sunday after opposition from U.S. and European antitrust regulators. The tie-up would have brought together the world's No. 2 and No. 3 oil services companies, raising concerns it would result in higher prices in the sector. It is the latest example of a large merger deal failing to make it to the finish line because of antitrust hurdles. "Challenges in obtaining remaining regulatory approvals and general industry conditions that severely damaged deal economics led to the conclusion that termination is the best course of action," said Dave Lesar, chief executive of Halliburton.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Leaked TTIP documents cast doubt on EU-US trade deal
The Guardian
Arthur Neslen

Talks for a free trade deal between Europe and the US face a serious impasse with “irreconcilable” differences in some areas, according to leaked negotiating texts. The two sides are also at odds over US demands that would require the EU to break promises it has made on environmental protection. President Obama said last week he was confident a deal could be reached. But the leaked negotiating drafts and internal positions, which were obtained by Greenpeace and seen by the Guardian, paint a very different picture.  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Colorado Supreme Court Rules Against Cities' Fracking Limits
Colorado Public Radio
GRACE HOOD

The Colorado Supreme Court on Monday struck down two cities' limits on fracking. The industry group Colorado Oil and Gas Association (COGA) challenged the cities of Longmont and Fort Collins after voters passed rules suspending or outlawing that method of extracting natural gas and oil. In two separate rulings on Monday, the Supreme Court called the cities' limits "invalid and unenforceable" because state law trumps the local ordinances. - See more at: http://www.cpr.org/news/story/colorado-supreme-court-rules-against-cities-fracking-limits#sthash.CWozfaAa.dpuf  [Full Story]

May 2, 2016
Colorado Supreme Court Upholds State Power, Says Cities Can’t Impose Fracking Bans
EcoWatch
Earthworks

Today, the Colorado Supreme Court struck down the rights of Coloradans to protect their health, safety and wellbeing from fracking through the use of local bans. The justices denied residents their “right of enjoying and defending their lives and liberties; and of seeking and obtaining their safety and happiness” as outlined in the Colorado Constitution, by determining that oil and gas development is pre-empted by the state.   [Full Story]

May 1, 2016
Nadia Steinzor: Air pollution from gas drilling requires action in Pennsylvania
Times Leader
Nadia Steinzor-Columnist

With summer around the corner, it’s time to start getting outdoors. Key to enjoying the season is clean air – knowing that when you walk, play or work in the garden and yard, the breaths you take won’t harm your health. Many Pennsylvanians live without this assurance – and not just in cities or industrial centers anymore. State data show increasing levels of pollution from natural gas wells, storage equipment, compressor stations and processing plants.   [Full Story]

May 1, 2016
Pennsylvania probes possible link between earthquakes, fracking
Eagle Ford Texas
Michael Rubinkam

Pennsylvania environmental regulators want to determine whether a series of minor earthquakes in the state this week were caused by nearby fracking operations by an oil and gas company. Five tiny temblors, all too weak to be felt by humans, took place in a 22-hour span in Lawrence County, about 50 miles north of Pittsburgh and three-quarters of a mile from a natural gas well owned by Houston-based Hilcorp Energy Co. No damage was reported.   [Full Story]

May 1, 2016
Baaken, Eagle Ford fracking leading to surge in dangerous gas - study
Seeking Alpha
Eli Hoffmann

A new study finds that fracking of U.S. shale fields is causing a global surge in ethane emissions. Ethane is known to contribute to global warming and dangerous air pollution.  [Full Story]

May 1, 2016
DEP investigates 5 quakes, 1 close to Lowellville
Vindy.com
Kalea Hall

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection is investigating five micro earthquakes in Lawrence County that occurred last Monday.   [Full Story]

May 1, 2016
An artifact of Marcellus drilling's disruptive glory days
Philly.com
Andrew Maykuth

JERSEY SHORE, Pa. - Blake and Gerlinde Trimble lived for nearly 30 years in the Riverdale Mobile Home Park outside this curiously named borough. But four years after they were evicted to make way for the shale-gas boom, they hardly recognize the place.   [Full Story]

Apr 30, 2016
Regulators probing possible link between fracking and quakes
Newsplex


Pennsylvania environmental regulators want to determine whether a series of minor earthquakes in the state this week were caused by nearby fracking operations by an oil and gas company.   [Full Story]

Apr 30, 2016
Federal Prosecutors Investigate People Close to Governor Over Buffalo Project
The Wall Street Journal


The companies in question, these people said, are Competitive Power Ventures Holdings LLC and COR Development Co. LLC. A spokesman for CPV couldn’t be reached for comment Friday; a spokeswoman for COR didn’t provide a comment. Mr. Percoco’s work with CPV was related in particular to the company’s plans to build a power plant in the Hudson Valley, one person said, a matter that required layers of approvals from the state. Mr. Percoco earned tens of thousands of dollars from CPV as a consultant, this person said. CPV has announced plans to build a natural gas-powered electrical generating facility in the Lower Hudson Valley.  [Full Story]

Apr 30, 2016
Flooding sweeps oil, chemicals into rivers
El Paso Times
Marty Schladen

REGULATORS AND ENVIRONMENTALISTS DISAGREE OVER THE RISK FROM FLOOD-RELATED OIL AND CHEMICAL SPILLS IN TEXAS. AUSTIN — Scores of photographs taken by state emergency-management officials show that when floodwaters rise in Texas, they inundate oil wells and fracking sites, sweeping crude and noxious chemicals into rivers throughout the Lone Star State. Most recently, rainbow sheens and caramel plumes can be seen radiating from tipped tanks and flooded production pads during the March flood of the Sabine River, which forms much of the state’s boundary with Louisiana. Similar scenes are visible in photos from last year’s floods of the Trinity, Red, and Colorado rivers.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Bakken oil field is causing a rise in air pollution, study says
Billings Gazette
MICHAEL BIESECKER and MATTHEW BROWN

WASHINGTON — An oil and natural gas field in the western United States is largely responsible for a global uptick of the air pollutant ethane, according to a new study. The team led by researchers at the University of Michigan found that fossil fuel production at the Bakken Formation in North Dakota and Montana is emitting roughly 2 percent of the ethane detected in the Earth's atmosphere. Along with its chemical cousin methane, ethane is a hydrocarbon that is a significant component of natural gas. Once in the atmosphere, ethane reacts with sunlight to form ozone, which can trigger asthma attacks and other respiratory problems, especially in children and the elderly. Ethane pollution can also harm agricultural crops. Ozone also ranks as the third-largest contributor to human-caused global warming after carbon dioxide and methane.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
State studying link between fracking, Lawrence County earthquakes
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Laura Legere

The U.S. Geological Survey says five minor earthquakes originated in an area just west of New Castle in a 22-hour period on Monday, all small tremors between magnitude 1.7 and 1.9, which is below what humans can feel. The timing and proximity of the Lawrence County earthquakes — originally the geological survey had identified just two — suggest a link to a nearby natural gas fracking operation, but seismologists were being cautious Thursday, saying it is too early to tell definitively if fracking triggered the quakes.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Economic Gravity in the Oil Industry: What Goes Up Comes Down
The New York Times
Paul Sullivan

IT’S not rocket science. What shoots up quickly usually comes back to earth. But a lot of people who hold leases to drill for oil on their land forgot that. Clarke and Sally Keeshan, whose income from leases on their Texas ranches fell by 60 percent in the last two years, are an exception. So is John Baen, a college professor who moonlights as a negotiator of drilling leases. When oil prices were at their peak, he said, the 150 wells that were on his land or land where he had negotiated the prices were bringing in about $100,000 a month. Now, he said, the amount has fallen by 80 to 90 percent.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Man burned in Salem Twp. gas line explosion; homes, businesses evacuated
Tribune-Review


Federal and state authorities are investigating the cause of a natural gas pipeline explosion in Salem Township Friday morning that seriously burned a nearby resident, destroyed one home and damaged others, and prompted a half-mile evacuation zone. The explosion and fire were in a 36-inch natural gas pipeline operated by Texas Eastern Transmission near the intersection of routes 22 and 819, said John Poister, spokesman for the Department of Environmental Protection. The explosion was reported at 8:17 a.m. Texas Eastern workers were able to shut off gas feeding the fire about an hour later, Poister said.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Pennsylvania Probes Possible Link Between Quakes,
ABC News
Michael Rubinkam

Pennsylvania environmental regulators want to determine whether a series of minor earthquakes in the state this week were caused by nearby fracking operations by an oil and gas company. Five tiny temblors, all too weak to be felt by humans, took place in a 22-hour span in Lawrence County, about 50 miles north of Pittsburgh and three-quarters of a mile from a natural gas well owned by Houston-based Hilcorp Energy Co. No damage was reported. Hydraulic fracking, a method to extract gas or oil from underground shale, has been tied to earthquakes in neighboring Ohio and other states, but never in Pennsylvania, the nation's No. 2 natural gas-producing state.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
How 10 Years of Fracking Has Been a Disaster for Our Water, Land and Climate
Huffington Post
Margie Alt

In the last decade, the combination of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing—the process known as ‘fracking’—has unlocked vast reserves of shale gas across the country, and unleashed a torrent of chemical pollution and environmental harm in its wake. Plenty of unknowns remain about the environmental impacts of fracking, due in large part to a lack of baseline testing before drilling began, and industry secrecy abetted by lack of sufficient government regulations. But what we do know, compiled in a new report by Environment America Research & Policy Center and Frontier Group, is cause for alarm. The study, Fracking By the Numbers, quantifies the environmental harm caused by more than 137,000 fracking wells permitted since 2005. Because it relies largely on industry-reported data, modest estimates of the average toll each well takes on the environment, and a patchwork of information from state and federal regulators, the report paints a conservative — but still frightening — picture of fracking’s devastation.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
'It was like looking into hell:' Natural gas explosion sparks large fire in Salem Township
WTAE Pittsburgh
Ashlie Hardway

SALEM TOWNSHIP, Pa. —A natural gas explosion sparked a fire with huge flames Friday in Salem Township, Westmoreland County, leaving one person badly burned, causing damage to nearby utilities and prompting evacuations in the immediate area.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Pittsburgh's Action Weather RADAR picks up gas pipeline fire
WTAE Pittsburgh
Steve MacLaughlin

Video  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
BOMB TRAINS: The Scariest Thing You Didn’t Know About
Chicago Magazine
TED C. FISHMAN

They could not look more ominous. The long coal-black tubes announce themselves by their distinctive shape and color, their markings too small to read from the street. The 30,000-gallon tank cars roll, sometimes 100 at a time, in trains of up to one mile in length. Their cargo? Crude oil—as much as three million gallons per train. Nearly all of it is light sweet Bakken crude, a type that is particularly explosive. In whole, these trains constitute likely the biggest, heaviest, and longest combustibles to ever traverse America, and they do so routinely. More pass through Chicago than any other big metro area. Their blast potential has earned them a terrifying nickname: bomb trains.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Spectra Gas Pipeline Explosion Cuts Flows to Eastern U.S.
Bloomberg
Tim Loh

An explosion and fire on a major Spectra Energy Corp. pipeline that crosses half the U.S. is disrupting natural gas shipments from western Pennsylvania to the Northeast. Crews shut off the gas feeding the flames, which burst out of Spectra’s 36-inch Texas Eastern pipeline in Salem Township at about 8:30 a.m., John Poister, a spokesman for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, said in an e-mail. While repairs will start as soon as possible, it’s unclear when service will be restored, Spectra said in a notice. The company declared force majeure at midday, sending natural gas futures surging as much as 5.6 percent on the New York Mercantile Exchange on speculation that the outage will limit supplies to the Northeast.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Supreme Court to rule on suits over local fracking regulations
Denver Business Journal
Cathy Proctor

The Colorado Supreme Court on Monday will issue decisions in a pair of closely watched, hard-fought legal battles over whether local governments can ban fracking within their borders. In the two cases, the Colorado Oil & Gas Association (COGA) sued the cities of Fort Collins and Longmont over voter-approved efforts to halt the use of hydraulic fracturing there.  [Full Story]

Apr 29, 2016
Fracking in the US causing global surge in dangerous gas, study finds
The Independent UK
Ian Johnston

Fracking of shale oil fields in the US is causing a global surge of a gas that causes climate change and creates dangerous air pollution, according to new research. Levels of ethane in the atmosphere had been falling since the 1980s, but in 2010 a sensor in Europe picked up a surprise increase.  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Cracked walls, crumbling brickwork: The legacy of fracking in Oklahoma
CBC News
Terry Reith, Briar Stewart

When Jon Sinon left California in 2002 for a new life in Oklahoma he thought he was trading earthquakes for tornados. "Now I got both." he says. He purchased one of the historic brick buildings on the main street of Guthrie, Okla. and opened a shop on the main floor. After a succession of earthquakes there are gaping cracks in the brickwork, and a broken granite arch hangs perilously. There is also a crack through the building's granite nameplate "Oklahoma.?"  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Public support for fracking falls yet again
Business Green


The latest round of DECC's Public Attitudes Tracker survey is here and as ever it reveals some intriguing shifts in the public's stance on a host of energy issues, with the most eye-catching development being yet another fall in public backing for fracking, taking support to its lowest point since at least 2012.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
DEP investigating 2 quakes near Pennsylvania fracking site
Bristol Herald Courier
Associated Press

NEW CASTLE, Pa. (AP) — The state Department of Environmental Protection is investigation whether fracking contributed to two small earthquakes near a western Pennsylvania drilling operation.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Latest: Peer-reviewed study undermines fracking’s claims of safety Researchers in Pavillion, Wyoming, traced the chemical footprint of the drilling.
High Country News
Elizabeth Shogren

BACKSTORY In 2005, a Pavillion, Wyoming, landowner suspected that his drinking water well had been contaminated by nearby natural gas drilling. An Environmental Protection Agency investigation found chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing in the aquifer but couldn’t rule out other sources of the pollution, such as waste pits from past drilling (“Hydrofracked: One man’s quest for answers about natural gas drilling,” HCN, 6/27/11). In 2013, the EPA dropped its study following criticism from industry, regulators and congressional Republicans.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Emma Thompson in fracking-free bake-off
Energy Voice
Joanne Warnock

British actress Emma Thompson has joined forces with her sister to protest against fracking in England.  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
State installing air monitors in drilling areas
The Times-Tribune
JON O'CONNELL

Years of community effort to improve air quality monitoring in areas surrounding natural gas operations is getting a big boost. The state Department of Environmental Protection on Wednesday announced it is spending $1.56 million on 10 installations that will continually monitor fine particulate matter, or particles in the air about one-thirtieth the width of a human hair. DEP Secretary John Quigley called the new monitoring sites an “unprecedented expansion” of air quality monitoring prompted by ongoing community concerns in areas around natural gas development. Monitors are to be installed in Wyoming and Susquehanna counties, as well as Fayette, Indiana and Lycoming counties by the end of the year. The DEP also will install monitors in Clarion, Jefferson and McKean counties by fall 2017. Installations in Towanda Twp., Bradford County, and Holbrook Twp., Greene County, were completed in March.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
New Report Shows ‘Natural Gas Increasingly Becoming an Unnecessary Bridge to Nowhere’
EcoWatch


Setting a new lopsided quarterly record, renewable sources (i.e., wind, solar, biomass and hydropower) outpaced—in fact, swamped—natural gas by a factor of more than 70:1 for new electrical generating capacity placed in-service during the first three months of calendar year 2016.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Do fracking activities cause earthquakes? Seismologists and the state of Oklahoma say yes
CBC News
Terry Reith and Briar Stewart

In the heartland of Oklahoma sits a pretty town dotted with American flags and a quaint main street of century-old brick buildings. But in Guthrie, the devastating impact of oil-industry-induced earthquakes is being felt hard. Look closely and you see cracks in the historic buildings, where the old masonry is giving way to a shifting ground. Guthrie has seen a wave of earthquakes since hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — picked up in the area.  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Pennsylvania investigates earthquakes near fracking operations
FuelFix
Associated Press

NEW CASTLE, Pa. — The state Department of Environmental Protection is investigating whether fracking contributed to two small earthquakes near a western Pennsylvania drilling operation. DEP spokeswoman Melanie Williams says Hilcorp Energy Co. stopped fracking at the Mahoning Township site at about noon Monday. That was about 12 hours after the U.S. Geological Survey recorded a magnitude-1.9 earthquake and about 10 hours before another quake of the same size was recorded. A woman who answered the company’s phone in New Castle on Thursday referred The Associated Press to a spokesman at the company’s Houston headquarters who wasn’t immediately available.  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Is It 1987 Yet? The Fracking Bust Keeps Rolling On
Forbes
Bill Gilmer

The 1982-87 oil bust is the industry standard for tough times. Complaints about falling oil prices and rig counts can always be countered with “At least it isn’t as bad as the 1980s.” But there is no question that times are very tough now. The last seven quarters have been a brutal setback for American oil, with the price of crude falling by $64 per barrel, the rig count down 70.2 percent and capital spending off by nearly 60 percent. This downward spiral showed no signs of slowing in the first quarter of this year, as the 698 rigs working at year’s end dropped by a third to 464 in late March. When the number of U.S. working rigs hit 488 on March 11, it set the low mark for the 67 years that Baker Hughes BHI +0.94% has conducted its weekly survey.  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
UK support for fracking hits new low Just 19% of people back fracking while public support for renewables has surged to 81%, government poll shows
The Guardian
Adam Vaughan

Public support for fracking in the UK has fallen to a new low, according to government polling, at the same time as backing for renewable energy has hit a record high. The survey, which is repeated every few months, shows that public enthusiasm for the controversial energy extraction method has fallen steadily in the past two years while opposition to it has risen dramatically.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
State Investigating 2 Quakes Near Pennsylvania Fracking Site
CBS Pittsburgh


NEW CASTLE, Pa. (AP) – The state Department of Environmental Protection is investigating whether fracking contributed to two small earthquakes near a western Pennsylvania drilling operation.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Fracking debate: Environmentalists question independence of CSIRO researcher
ABC.net
Tom Maddocks & Xavier La Canna

Environmentalists in Central Australia have questioned the independence of the man leading CSIRO's research into fracking, as debate about the controversial topic starts to heat up ahead of the Northern Territory election in August.   [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Do fracking activities cause earthquakes? Seismologists and the state of Oklahoma say yes Earthquakes increasing in volume and intensity around fracking and waste disposal sites
CBC News
Terry Reith & Briar Stewart

In the heartland of Oklahoma sits a pretty town dotted with American flags and a quaint main street of century-old brick buildings. But in Guthrie, the devastating impact of oil-industry-induced earthquakes is being felt hard.  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
SENECA GAS STORAGE: Pipeline rejection bodes ill for lake project
Press Connects
Tom Wilber

Nearly a year after a decision was expected, the Cuomo administration is remaining silent on the fate of a controversial plan to warehouse propane and natural gas in salt caverns under the shores of Seneca Lake. Yet the administration’s denial of other major shale gas projects — most recently the Constitution Pipeline — may speak volumes on whether Houston-based Crestwood Equity Partners LLC will get approval anytime soon.  [Full Story]

Apr 28, 2016
Green Activists Push Colorado To Consider Fracking Ban Photo of Andrew Follett
Daily Caller
Andrew Follett

Environmental activists in Colorado managed to get the state’s Senate to consider a pair of bills Wednesday that would make hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, a lot harder to carry out in the state.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
10 Fracking Infrastructure Projects Canceled or Delayed in the Last 24 Months
EcoWatch
Ted Glick

Since April 2014, 10 fracking infrastructure projects have been canceled or delayed. Here’s the list:   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
TTIP: Chevron lobbied for controversial legal right as 'environmental deterrent'
The Guardian
Arthur Neslen

Chevron lobbied the EU to give foreign investors the legal right to challenge government decisions in a major US-EU trade deal because it would act as a deterrent against laws such as fracking bans, the Guardian can reveal. Environmentalists have long-warned that the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership’s (TTIP) investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) commercial courts risk a regulatory chill, with governments backing away from measures limiting fossil fuel extraction for fear of lawsuits. But this is the first time that a major oil firm has corroborated their fears.  [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Study indicates lingering saltwater contamination in oil patch
Bismarck Tribune
Lauren Donovan

A published and peer-reviewed Duke University study finds that thousands of saltwater and frack flowback spills throughout the oil patch have left a legacy of toxic contamination, including radioactive soils and polluted streams unsafe for human consumption and aquatic health.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Fracking Wastewater Treatment Technologies: Which Will Emerge as the Most Popular?
Environmental Leader
Jessica Lyons Hardcastle

While fracking has produced cheap natural gas in the US, it has also increased competition for water, which is in short supply across many parts of the country.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Mark Ruffalo to Obama: You’re Making a Huge Mistake on Fracking (Guest Column)
Yahoo News
Mark Ruffalo

While I have been a supporter of President Obama on his leadership in addressing climate change and other social issues, I have been gravely disappointed by his cheerleading for the oil and gas industry over his two terms in office. Unlike leaders such as Cuomo, who stood up to corporations to protect the health of Americans, Obama has wrongfully continued the toxic legacy of the Bush Administration’s energy policy, paving the way for fracking’s expansion.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Hilcorp halts fracking at Lawrence County shale site near earthquake
TribLive
David Conti & Tory N. Parrish

A natural gas company voluntarily halted fracking activity on a Marcellus shale well in Lawrence County this week while state officials investigate a minor, nearby earthquake.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Contamination in North Dakota linked to fracking spills Metals, salts and radioactivity in brine-laden wastewater years later
EurekAlert


DURHAM, N.C. -- Accidental wastewater spills from unconventional oil production in North Dakota have caused widespread water and soil contamination, a new Duke University study finds. Researchers found high levels of ammonium, selenium, lead and other toxic contaminants as well as high salts in the brine-laden wastewater, which primarily comes from hydraulically fractured oil wells in the Bakken region of western North Dakota.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Energy company shuts down fracking operation in Lawrence County
Vindy


NEW CASTLE, Pa. — A Houston-based energy company has stopped its fracking operation after a small earthquake occurred in Lawrence County Monday. Hilcorp Energy Co. stopped fracking at about noon Monday after a small earthquake hit in Mahoning Township, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection confirmed Wednesday.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
10 Fracking Infrastructure Projects Canceled or Delayed in the Last 24 Months
EcoWatch
Ted Glick

Since April 2014, 10 fracking infrastructure projects have been canceled or delayed. Here’s the list: April 2014: The Bluegrass Pipeline in Kentucky was stopped by a court decision upholding landowners’ rights against the use of eminent domain to take their land for private profit. November 2015: The Port Ambrose liquified natural gas (LNG) project was vetoed by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. The project was proposed by Liberty Natural Gas off the shores of New York and New Jersey.  [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Contamination in North Dakota linked to fracking spills Metals, salts and radioactivity in brine-laden wastewater years later
Science Daily


Accidental wastewater spills from unconventional oil production in North Dakota have caused widespread water and soil contamination, a new study finds. Researchers found high levels of contaminants and salt in surface waters polluted by the brine-laden wastewater, which primarily comes from fracked wells. Soil at spill sites was contaminated with radium. At one site, high levels of contaminants were detected in residual waters four years after the spill occurred.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
CONTAMINATION IN NORTH DAKOTA LINKED TO FRACKING SPILLS
Duke University
Avner Vengosh, Nancy Lauer, & Jennifer Harkness

DURHAM, N.C. -- Accidental wastewater spills from unconventional oil production in North Dakota have caused widespread water and soil contamination, a new Duke University study finds.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Sensors to aid air monitoring near natural gas compressors in Pa.'s rural areas
TribLive
Elizabeth Behrman

With the help of a federal grant, the state Department of Environmental Protection plans to ramp up its efforts to monitor air quality near natural gas compressors in rural parts of the state.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
NATURAL GAS: Court battle looms over N.Y.'s denial of Constitution pipeline
E & E Newswire
Mike Lee

A pipeline company has said it will fight New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's decision to block a natural gas line that federal regulators already approved across the state, setting up a potential battle about the limits of federal and state authority. Cuomo's administration turned down permits under the federal Clean Water Act for the 125-mile Constitution pipeline to cross streams in New York, saying it would damage trout habitat and old-growth forests and that the sponsors had declined to co-locate the line on an existing highway right of way. The pipeline, being developed by Williams Cos., Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. and two other partners, would carry gas from the Marcellus Shale field in northeastern Pennsylvania across New York and connect with existing pipelines near Wright, N.Y.  [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Cuomo’s pipeline decision may have ripple effects for energy policy
Politico New York
Scott Waldman

ALBANY— Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration chose Earth Day, April 22, to reject the proposed Constitution pipeline, which would have carried natural gas from Pennsylvania through portions of upstate. The move came as the governor has been trying to burnish his green credentials, and environmentalists were indeed as delighted with the administration's decision as the pipeline’s developers were disappointed. The state’s savvy anti-fracking coalition, which effectively hounded Cuomo until he announced a fracking ban after his re-election in 2014, led the cheers. “Governor Cuomo and the DEC stood up to the oil and gas industry and effectively shut down the Constitution Pipeline project,” said Wes Gillingham, Catskill Mountainkeeper’s program director.  [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Texas, Oklahoma, Wyoming: Oil Woes Start to Hit Hard
Wall Street Journal
Maria Andriotis

The slump in crude prices is starting to show up as missed payments by consumers in the oil patch.  [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Viral Video of River Catching on Fire Prompts Call for Ban on Fracking
EcoWatch
Max Phillips

The Greens New South Wales mining spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham called on governments today to stop the spread of coal seam gas (CSG) and for the true impact of fugitive emissions to be independently assessed after the video of methane gas burning through the Condamine River in Queensland, Australia went viral with millions of views and global media coverage.   [Full Story]

Apr 27, 2016
Emma Thompson breaks injunction to stage fracking protest
Telegraph
Emily Gosden

Emma Thompson, the actress and environmental activist, has broken a court injunction to stage a protest against fracking in Lancashire. Ms Thompson and her sister, Sophie, baked cupcakes in a field near Preston belonging to a farmer on whose land energy company Cuadrilla is planning to frack for shale gas. An injunction has been in place banning protesters from the site since 2014. Officers from Lancashire Police attended the site and spoke to the sisters but took no action and made no arrests. Breaking the injunction is a civil matter.  [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
MoveOn.Org Petitions To Ban Fracking In Democratic Party Platform
The Daily Caller
Chris White

A petition recently filed by environmentalist Brad Johnson on MoveOn.org seeks to “ban fracking in the Democratic platform.” The petition suggests scientific evidence now shows the benefits of switching from traditional fuels like coal to natural gas “were a total mirage” and only accelerate global warming.   [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
“There is no doubt”: Exxon Knew CO2 Pollution Was A Global Threat By Late 1970s
DeSmogBlog
Brendan DeMelle and Kevin Grandia

Throughout Exxon’s global operations, the company knew that CO2 was a harmful pollutant in the atmosphere years earlier than previously reported. DeSmog has uncovered Exxon corporate documents from the late 1970s stating unequivocally “there is no doubt” that CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels was a growing “problem” well understood within the company. “It is assumed that the major contributors of CO2 are the burning of fossil fuels… There is no doubt that increases in fossil fuel usage and decreases of forest cover are aggravating the potential problem of increased CO2 in the atmosphere. Technology exists to remove CO2 from stack gases but removal of only 50% of the CO2 would double the cost of power generation.” [emphasis added]  [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
Barnett Shale rig count hits a new low: zero
Star-Telegram
Max B. Baker

FORT WORTH It finally happened. After reporting only a handful of rigs working in the Barnett Shale for some time, industry publication RigData last week reported that it could not find any active rigs in the natural gas field that underlies about two dozen counties in North Texas. It was shocking news for an area that supported nearly 200 rigs a week less than a decade ago. “Sorry to inform you but there are no rigs currently working in the Barnett Shale,” said an email Friday from LuAnn Zellner, RigData editorial director. “The report produced zero results.” Read more here: http://www.star-telegram.com/news/business/article73822362.html#storylink=cpy  [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
Hillary Clinton Surpasses $5 Million in Bundled Lobbyist Contributions
Washington Free Beacon
Joe Schoffstall

Raises millions from lobbyists connected to oil and gas, health insurance companies Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has now collected more than $5 million in bundled lobbyist contributions, many of which come from lobbyists who represents industries that she opposes on the campaign trail, recent campaign finance filings show. Clinton added another $1.5 million in special interest cash from a handful of bundlers during the first quarter of 2016, which spans the period Jan. 1 to March 31, 2016. Lobbyists had already raised $4.1 million for Hillary for America before these bundled donations were reported.  [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
Methane Sleuths Monitor Seeping Gases From Oil and Gas Drilling
Dallas Observer
Julie Ryan

Along the green, tree-lined country road, four large metal tanks tower on a gravel field, clean and tan-colored against a cloudless blue sky. But the breeze brings an odd metallic tang to the back of one’s throat, and the view changes through an infrared camera’s viewfinder. When the lens zooms in on a hatch atop one tank, the sky turns black and white fumes are pouring into the wind. A click, and the camera’s high sensitivity setting turns everything high-contrast and jittery. A whole array of gases appears, boiling out in black, gray and white. Enervest operating company’s Cole gas well-site on Masch Branch Road northwest of Denton is leaking. What other gas wells and storage tanks are leaking, or purposely venting, around North Texas? It’s Sharon Wilson’s mission to find out. The Earthworks investigator seeks the fumes that escape from hydraulic fracture gas wells and storage sites that pepper the Barnett Shale of North Texas by the thousands. There are tens of thousands more such facilities in other areas rich in shale around the state and the nation.  [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
This River Near a Fracking Site Is Alarmingly Flammable
Popular Mechanics
Eric Limer

Fracking is the process of drilling into the earth and then pummeling rocks with a high-pressure mixture of water and other ingredients to released gas trapped inside, and while it's certainly an effective way to tap natural gas deposits that may have otherwise been unreachable, it's got its downsides, like how it could cause earthquakes, or lead to runaway leaks of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere. Of the many potential dangers, this is one of the most spectacular. Jeremy Buckingham, a member of the Australian political party known as the Greens, filmed this inflammatory video near a fracking site in Queensland, Australia, where errant methane was bubbling up through a nearby river. When attempting to see if the gas coming up through the river was in fact flammable, the video team was surprised by an exceptionally resounding yes, and flames that kept the river on fire in a way that is as mesmerizing as it is unnatural. Jeremy Buckingham, a member of the Australian political party known as the Greens, filmed this inflammatory video near a fracking site in Queensland, Australia, where errant methane was bubbling up through a nearby river. When attempting to see if the gas coming up through the river was in fact flammable, the video team was surprised by an exceptionally resounding yes, and flames that kept the river on fire in a way that is as mesmerizing as it is unnatural.   [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
84% of public health studies find hazards in fracking: research
Times LIve
Bruce Gorton

A new meta-study, published by the online journal PloS One, has found that 84% of public health studies between 2009 and 2015 have findings which indicate public health risks. This is of concern to us in South Africa, because our government announced in March that exploration for shale gas would begin in the next financial year. Now how Fracking works is by digging wells of about four kilometres, and then pumping a cocktail of water and chemicals into the well to crack the shale and release the gas it holds. There is believed to be about 147.828 trillion cubic metres of shale gas in the Karo  [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
MoveOn.Org Petitions To Ban Fracking In Democratic Party Platform
Daily Caller
Chris White

A petition recently filed by environmentalist Brad Johnson on MoveOn.org seeks to “ban fracking in the Democratic platform.” The petition suggests scientific evidence now shows the benefits of switching from traditional fuels like coal to natural gas “were a total mirage” and only accelerate global warming. It went on to say the massive Porter Ranch methane blowout, which started in October and was capped in February, was a result of the supposedly ill-conceived natural gas policies pushed by Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama.   [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
NY Comptroller Urges More Insurance For Rail Oil Spills
WAMC
Dave Lucas

New York state's comptroller is urging federal authorities to strengthen safety measures against oil spills and require trains to carry sufficient insurance to cover cleanup costs from major accidents. Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli is administrator of New York's Oil Spill Fund. He cites a U.S. Transportation Department finding that oil shippers and rail companies carry insurance that may be insufficient to cover a serious accident involving tankers carrying crude oil or other hazardous materials. In a letter to the department and the Federal Railroad Administration, DiNapoli says a review of Securities and Exchange Commission filings shows CSX Corp. is self-insured for $25 million for "non-catastrophic" property damage and $50 million for natural catastrophes.   [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
Consol expects to make decision on new drilling within months
Pittsburgh Business Times
Paul J. Gough

Consol Energy Inc. said it expects to make a decision within the next three to six months about when it could resume natural gas drilling, although the area south of Pittsburgh likely won't be the first place where Consol will place rigs.   [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
Obama’s Controversial Offshore Drilling Proposal Rests On Research Funded By Fossil Fuel Industry
IBT
David Sirota

To make its case for a new proposal that could expand offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and near Alaska, the Obama administration recently released a report touting what it indicated would be the significant economic benefits of the plan. The apparently impartial, 279-page analysis said the initiative was a key component of President Barack Obama's effort to support “safe and responsible domestic oil and natural gas production as a means to support economic growth and job creation.”... Buried in the BOEM report’s fine print, though, were footnotes shedding light on how the bureau came to its conclusions: it used studies from the same fossil fuel industry that could benefit from the expansion. Eight of the nine economic analyses cited by government regulators in their report were produced by authors or organizations with links to the fossil fuel industry — which has been lobbying the federal government on drilling issues in the lead-up to a decision.   [Full Story]

Apr 26, 2016
Blair Horner: Fracking Economic Crash Underscores Wisdom Of NY’s Ban
WAMC
Blair Horner

Last week, the world’s leaders gathered on Earth Day to formally agree to the climate change deal hammered out last December. While there are still lots of questions about how effective the global agreement will be in limiting the damage from planetary warming, one message is clear; the world has got to move away from relying on fossil fuels – coal, oil and gas – to generate energy. That international policy conclusion strongly bolsters New York State’s decision to ban hydraulic fracturing. Last year, the Cuomo Administration took the unprecedented step of banning the use of horizontal hydraulic fracturing – aka fracking – due to the potential environmental and public health damage that could result from the practice. At that time, New York State was the first state with significant natural gas reserves to ban fracking. Since then, there has been a growing body of evidence that fracking does pose environmental and public health risks. And what has become clearer still is that the world needs to keep fossil fuels in the ground – not burn them so the resulting gases rise into the lower atmosphere and become a heat-trapping blanket.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Pennsylvania Attorney General Candidate Says He’d Look Closely At Fossil Fuel Companies Like Exxon
Think Progress
Natasha Geiling

The day before Pennsylvania voters cast their votes in the primary election, the leading Democratic candidate for attorney general has confirmed to ThinkProgress that, if elected, he would join a growing coalition of state attorneys general in examining whether fossil fuel companies like ExxonMobil have purposefully misled the public on climate change. “Climate change is one of our world’s most pressing issues and and I’ve made addressing it a top priority in my campaign and have pledged to hold the fracking industry accountable for violating Pennsylvania’s environmental laws,” Josh Shapiro, who according to the most recent polling from Harper Poll leads the current Democratic attorney general race by almost 20 points, told ThinkProgress via an emailed statement. “I applaud [New York Attorney General Eric] Schneiderman and the 16 other state Attorneys General who are investigating Exxon Mobil for misleading investors about climate change. As Attorney General, I will join them in looking closely at whether fossil fuel companies like Exxon Mobil have violated Pennsylvania’s laws.”  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
‘We did not expect it to explode’: Australian politician blames fracking after setting river ablaze with a lighter
National Post
Ben Guarino Washington Post

Some people want to watch the world burn. Others — like Jeremy Buckingham, a member of the Australian Parliament — will settle for rivers. In an act of protest against coal seam fracking, the Greens Party member recently took an aluminum boat down the Condamine River in Queensland, Australia. This was no lazy afternoon cruise. The surface of the river fizzed with bubbles of methane gas. Methane is colourless and odourless — but it’s also quite flammable. Buckingham leaned over the side of the boat, and, as though lighting a barbecue, set the methane ablaze.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Groups Call On Obama To End Crude Oil Exports In Wake Of Paris Climate Agreement Signing
DeSmog Blog
Mike Gaworecki

175 nations signed the Paris Climate Agreement last Friday, setting a record for the most countries to sign a U.N. agreement on opening day. Earlier in the week, even before Secretary of State John Kerry officially signed on behalf of the U.S. with his granddaughter in his lap, more than 300 environmental, faith, health and social justice organizations filed a legal petition calling on the Obama Administration to declare a national emergency and end all U.S. crude oil exports as a means of meeting its commitments under the Paris Agreement. According to the groups, led by the Center for Biological Diversity and Food & Water Watch, President Obama could immediately halt the export of crude oil under executive legal authority granted to him by the 2016 Appropriations Act and the National Emergencies Act.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
After nearly 200 active rigs a decade ago, no one is drilling North Texas’ Barnett Shale
Dallas Morning News


After reporting only a handful of rigs working in the Barnett Shale for some time, industry publication RigData last week reported that it could not find any active rigs in the natural gas field that underlies about two dozen counties in North Texas.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
NY pipeline opponents flex muscle
The Journal News
Jon Campbell

ALBANY – With one natural-gas pipeline effectively rejected and another pulled off the table last week, anti-pipeline activists are flexing their political muscle in New York. The activists, many of them opponents of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, are pointing to the state Department of Environmental Conservation’s Friday rejection of a key permit for the proposed Constitution Pipeline as a symbol of their collective might.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Pipeline developers vow to fight New York permit rejection
AP
Mary Esch

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Developers of a 124-mile pipeline designed to transport natural gas to the Northeast from Pennsylvania's shale fields said Monday they'll challenge New York's rejection of a critical permit. The Constitution Pipeline Company said the denial letter from the New York Department of Environmental Conservation includes "flagrant misstatements and inaccurate allegations" and is driven by politics rather than science. The DEC on Friday denied a water quality permit, saying the project fails to meet standards that protect hundreds of streams, wetlands and other water resources in its path. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved the project in December 2014, conditioned on the state permit. The company, a partnership formed by Cabot Oil & Gas, Williams Partners and Piedmont Natural Gas Company, can appeal the state decision to the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Spokesman Christopher Stockton said the company is considering that option   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Constitution Pipeline pushes on, despite N.Y. permit denial
Akron Beacon Journal
Bob Downing

ALBANY, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Constitution Pipeline Company, LLC announced today that it remains steadfastly committed to pursuing the federally-approved energy infrastructure project, despite the recent decision by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) to deny the Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the Constitution Pipeline Project.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Another fracking pipeline is rejected
CNN Money
Matt Egan

Score one for the fracktivists. New York State has rejected a planned 125-mile long natural gas pipeline that was strongly opposed by environmentalists. Governor Andrew Cuomo's administration ruled late Friday the Constitution Pipeline project failed to meet the state's water quality standards.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Fracking referendum? Pennsylvania primary offers choice for Democratic voters.
RT
Anna Driver

The Pennsylvania primary election this week will pit national and statewide Democrats who have various viewpoints on the future of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in the nation's second-most prominent fracking state.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Hundreds join anti-fracking protest
The Scarborough News
Carl Gavaghan

Several hundred people gathered to oppose a onshore oil and gas conference being held at Scarborough Spa this morning. The lively protest drew locals and campaigners From as far north as Durham and as far West as Blackpool.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Sea Change in Gasland? PA Primary Shaping into Fracking Referendum
eNews Park Forest
Nika Knight

Pennsylvania Democrats will have the opportunity to choose a host of anti-fracking candidates on the states’ primary ballot on Tuesday—representing a potential sea change against the industry at the heart of the Marcellus Shale, one of the country’s largest fracking plays.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
DRBC drops request for joint PennEast hearings with federal regulator
Buck County Courier Times
Kyle Bagenstose

All you need is love. And also maybe 6,000 signatures, dozens of nonprofits and countless pleas for your significant other to change ways. That’s what environmental organizers have thrown at the Delaware River Basin Commission in the past year, ever since the agency filed a request to hold joint hearings with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission as it reviewed the merits of the proposed PennEast natural gas pipeline. The efforts appeared to pay off Monday, as the DRBC posted a message on its website announcing it has dropped the request and will instead hold independent hearings.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
A Former PR Worker Whose Job Was To Defend Fracking Online Describes How They Mislead The Public
Ring Of Fire


With the news that a pro-Clinton SuperPAC has invested millions in paying for online shills to go around infiltrating anti-Clinton conversations and attempt to misinform and sway opinions anonymously, a discussion on Reddit prompted individuals who have been a part of these shilling campaigns to speak out, sharing how effective and calculated this sort of online infiltration is. One such user posted anonymously, but then shortly after deleted their comment, no doubt in fear that his/her former employer would see and punish the person for their valuable insight. The Reddit user said that they were a former employee of a PR firm who defended fracking online. What follows is an eye-opening description of what the fracking industry is willing to do to remove scrutiny and criticism of the industry. Without doubt, this is done by the oil and gas industry nationwide as well as the drug and tobacco industry and any other industry which receives a healthy amount of scrutiny online.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Constitution Pipeline: Laying Down a Dismal Future
Skidmore News
Jen Cristiano and Dan Casarella

On April 11th, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders praised the people of New York for “standing up to Governor Cuomo and demanding that New York State ban fracking.” Senator Sanders credits the grassroots organizations and activists who have worked against fracking for achieving this ban. It is a progressive first step to fundamentally change the world in which we live in. However, New York cannot ban fracking for health concerns while simultaneously importing fracked natural gas at the cost of its neighbors’ health and the environment. More fights lie ahead for New Yorkers in taking on the Constitution Pipeline proposed by the Constitution Pipeline Company. The proposed pipeline would be 124 miles long, connecting fracked natural gas from Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania to the Iroquois Gas Transmission and Tennessee Gas Pipeline systems in Schoharie County, New York. Although the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has already approved the project, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has not.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Residents question company on proposed natural gas power plant near Nemacolin
Observer-Reporter
Bob Niedbala

NEMACOLIN – An informational public meeting held Monday on plans to build a 536-megawatt natural gas power plant near Nemacolin brought questions from residents about noise, emissions and increased truck traffic. About 50 people attended the meeting at the Nemacolin union hall to hear about the project proposed by Hill Top Energy Center LLC for a 41.7-acre site off Thomas Road. Only a few had questions. No one directly opposed it. Hilltop Energy applied for both an air quality permit and water discharge permit from the state Department of Environmental Protection, representatives of which were also on hand to answer questions.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Constitution Pipeline Joins Keystone On The Regulatory Casualty List
Seeking Alpha


Summary In 2010, the New York State legislature passed a temporary moratorium on fracking in the state. The ban became permanent in 2015. In another landmark decision, the state's environmental regulator just denied the permit to Williams Companies’ Constitution Pipeline, which was designed to bring Marcellus gas to New York and New England. The same week, Kinder Morgan abruptly cancelled its similar north-bound pipeline expansion project.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
IRRC Votes To OK Final DEP Drilling Regs., But House & Senate Will Have Their Say
PA Environment Digest


The Independent Regulatory Review Commission voted 3 to 2 to approve DEP’s final Chapter 78 (conventional) and 78a (unconventional, Marcellus Shale) drilling regulations at its meeting Thursday after 7 hours of hearing from DEP and those opposing and supporting the rulemaking.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Sen. Yaw Calls For Senate/House Disapproval Resolution On DEP Drilling Regulations
PA Environment Digest


Sen. Gene Yaw (R-Lycoming), Majority Chair of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, issued this statement Friday on the approval of DEP’s drilling regulations by the Independent Regulatory Review Commission Thursday— “I recognize that strong regulations are needed to allow for safe development of our natural resources. However, the objections raised by both standing committees and two IRRC Commissioners to this rulemaking are warranted given the fact that the Department has circumvented state laws and a Supreme Court opinion in an effort to justify expanded provisions of the rulemaking that they are not authorized to enact.   [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Australian politician blames fracking after he sets river ablaze with a lighter
The Washington Post
Ben Guarino

Some people want to watch the world burn. Others — like Jeremy Buckingham, a member of the Australian Parliament — will settle for rivers. In an act of protest against coal seam fracking, the Greens Party member recently took an aluminium boat down the Condamine River in Queensland, Australia. This was no lazy afternoon cruise. The surface of the river fizzed with bubbles of methane gas. Methane is colorless and odorless — but it’s also quite flammable. Buckingham leaned over the side of the boat, and, as though lighting a barbecue, set the methane ablaze.  [Full Story]

Apr 25, 2016
Budget bill gives natural gas projects $12 million boost
NPR State Impact PA
Marie Cusick

Natural gas infrastructure projects are getting a $12 million boost in a budget bill Governor Tom Wolf has allowed to become law without his signature. The money shifts from the state’s Alternative Energy Investment Act and will be used as grants to hospitals, businesses, schools and local governments to expand access to natural gas. The language is part of a broader bill known as the fiscal code–a companion piece of legislation to the state budget, which Wolf also allowed to become law last month. With this latest move, the state’s unprecedented budget impasse is finally over, two months before next year’s budget is due on July 1st.  [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
Federal fracking rule in hands of federal judge in Wyoming
Casper Star Tribune
BEN NEARY

CHEYENNE — The future of federal rules aimed at protecting land, water and wildlife from energy-production practices including hydraulic fracturing now rests with a judge in Wyoming. U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl last year blocked implementation of rules drafted by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. He acted in response to a legal challenge from the states of Colorado, North Dakota and Utah and Wyoming. The states claim the BLM lacks authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing. Commonly called “fracking,” the procedure involves injecting substances including water, sand and chemicals underground to increase production from oil and gas wells.  [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
Why New York blocked a major natural gas pipeline
Christian Science Monitor
Ben Thompson

New York environmental regulators on Friday denied a permit needed for the 124-mile Constitution Pipeline project to move forward.   [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
Pennsylvania voters torn over calls for a fracking ban
Reuters
Valerie Volcovici

WASHINGTON, Pennsylvania, April 24 (Reuters) - For some Democratic voters in Pennsylvania, Tuesday's primary election will be more than just a chance to pick preferred candidates for public office - it will be a mini-referendum on the future of the state's downtrodden fracking industry.   [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
A Big Win for the Anti-Fracking Movement as Another Major Pipeline Proposal Bites the Dust
truthdig
Jon Queally

Following energized grassroots campaign, state of New York rejects permit for controversial Constitution Pipeline For the second time in less than a week, climate activists and fracking opponents in the northeast find themselves celebrating. The latest applause comes after a state regulatory agency on Friday—which happened to be Earth Day—announced it was denying a permit for a major fracked-gas pipeline in the state. Just days earlier, another similar project was halted in New England.   [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
A Pipeline Defeated: How a Small Town Saved Itself
Truth-Out
William Rivers Pitt, Op-Ed

In the dungeon that was the winter of 2014 here in my New Hampshire home, a pair of representatives from the natural gas pipeline company Kinder Morgan/Tennessee Gas arrived in the town of Rindge, just down the road. They were there to meet with the town administrator about a proposed natural gas pipeline route that would cut the town in half, along with several other towns, as it made its way to the sea.   [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
Australian politician sets river on fire to protest fracking dangers
Mashable
Ariel Bogle

An Australian politician has captured the world's attention after setting a river on fire in an effort to highlight the dangers of fracking. New South Wales Greens Member of Parliament Jeremy Buckingham was taken by locals to the Condamine River in Queensland, Australia, where mysterious bubbling has been taking place since at least 2012.  [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
Another fracking pipeline is rejected
CNN Money
Matt Egan

Score one for the fracktivists. New York State has rejected a planned 125-mile long natural gas pipeline that was strongly opposed by environmentalists. Governor Andrew Cuomo's administration ruled late Friday the Constitution Pipeline project failed to meet the state's water quality standards. The decision is a major blow to the pipeline, which was dreamt up four years ago as a way to transport natural gas fracked in Northeast Pennsylvania to Boston, New York City and other markets in the region.  [Full Story]

Apr 24, 2016
NORTH DAKOTA: Bakken boomtown 'man camps' enter their final days
E & E Newswire
Pamela King

WILLISTON, N.D. -- Around the Wal-Mart in this once-booming oil town stands a cluster of new hotels and apartments. Since 2010, Williston has morphed its patchwork of campsites and RV parks -- one of which was famously located in the supercenter's lot -- into new housing developments with enough capacity for a growing population of laborers seeking jobs in the Bakken Shale. But as the price of a barrel of oil has settled near $45, down from about $100 two years ago, Williston's oil workers are returning home, leaving those new houses and apartments empty. Roughly 80 percent of Williston's housing units were occupied in 2015, according to data from the city's economic development group. That's down from an estimated 99 percent in 2013, a profile from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development shows.  [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
Third Pipeline Project Under Scrutiny
WAMC
Dave Lucas

Two pipeline projects that would have crossed the northeast have been scrubbed: activists are now calling for a third pipeline to be stopped. Politicians and activists have stepped up their efforts to halt Spectra energy’s proposed AIM pipeline that would be routed through the lower Hudson Valley. It’s already been green-lighted by the Federal energy Regulatory Commission, despite Governor Andrew Cuomo’s concerns that it runs very close to the Indian Point nuclear power plant. Downstate leaders including Westchester Assemblywoman Sandy Galef sent FERC a letter demanding the agency respect the state’s authority and jurisdiction in determining AIM’s future.  [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
SoCalGas Offers Free Home Cleaning to Relocated Porter Ranch Residents; Some Express Skepticism
KTLA
Steve Kuzj

Some Porter Ranch residents expressed skepticism over the Southern California Gas Co.'s offer of free home interior cleaning in the aftermath of a massive gas leak. Steve Kuzj reports from the KTLA 5 Newsroom at 6 p.m. on April 23, 2016.  [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
Gender-bending chemical risk to humans from fracking, warn scientists
Herald Scotland
Rob Edwards

there are fresh fears about fracking in Scotland's central belt after scientists in America discovered dangerous levels of toxic 'gender-bender' chemicals downstream from a fracking site.  [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
Report offers advice for fracking states
The D Post
David Beard

MORGANTOWN — Severance tax trust funds are a good way for fracking states to turn a finite revenue source into long-term stability to ride out inevitable boom-bust cycles. That’s the essence of a report issued this past week by the Brookings Institute, an esteemed nonpartisan D.C. think tank.   [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
ENERGY: Rancher challenges energy industry
The Daily Times
James Fenton

FARMINGTON — A Gobernador rancher who appears in a new television ad that promotes stronger federal methane rules related to leaks and the practices of venting and flaring by the oil and gas industry has found himself straddling the line between environmental activists and the industry.   [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
“Bloody crazy”: River near fracking site bursts into flames in Australia (VIDEO)
RT


A Queensland river near a fracking site exploded into flames after a coal seam gas (CSG) protester sparked a kitchen lighter above the water surface.   [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
Is Fracking Causing the Epidemic of Horse Birth Defects at Breeding Farm?
EcoWatch
LORRAINE BERRY

In New York’s Southern Tier, local newspapers are investigating the connection between a local racetrack owner’s sick foals and the fracking fluids present on his farmland. The Ithaca Journal featured a report by Tom Wilber in which he investigated the ongoing issue with foals being born without the ability to swallow—17 of them so far—on the breeding farm of Jeff Gural, owner of the Tioga Downs, Meadowlands Racetrack and Vernon Downs.   [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
‘People should be terrified fracking is spreading’ – Australian MP who set river on fire to RT
RT News


Fracking should be banned as a “global threat” as it causes methane leaks contaminating water in the communities near gas wells, says an Australian MP who literally set a river ablaze to draw attention to the adverse effects of the practice. The companies that extract coal seam gas via fracking are duping people into believing that their technology is safe, while in reality it has contributed greatly to the pollution of sites like Condamine river located in the Australian state of Queensland just near the fracking site, Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham said in an interview to RT.  [Full Story]

Apr 23, 2016
What President Obama Can Do to Combat Environmental Racism
vice
Sarah Harvard

In his 2012 State of the Union Address, President Barack Obama called the United States "the Saudi Arabia of natural gas," pushing a proposal to provide tax breaks and subsidies to increase the use of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The plan, he said, could create an estimated 600,000 new jobs by the end of 2022, and give America "energy independence" from the rest of the world.   [Full Story]

Apr 22, 2016
Cuomo administration rejects Constitution pipeline
Capital New York
Scott Waldman

ALBANY—The Cuomo administration has denied the water quality permits for a controversial pipeline in what has become another political test of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s environmental legacy.   [Full Story]

Apr 22, 2016
Scientists Who Are Questioning Fracking’s Impact Have Oil Industry Ties, Groups Say
ThinkProgress
ALEJANDRO DAVILA FRAGOSO

n the summer of 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency said in a much-anticipated draft report that hydraulic fracturing has not led to “widespread, systemic impacts” on drinking water. That statement was for many as divisive as it was bold, for it invigorated the industry’s position that fracking is safe while angering critics who say it actually creates a long list of environmental problems, including an increase in greenhouse gas emissions. Since that draft report was released, the EPA’s independent Science Advisory Board panel has questioned it twice, most recently saying the panel is “concerned” that major findings “are ambiguous and appear inconsistent with the observations, data, and levels of uncertainty presented and discussed in the body of the draft assessment report.” As the SAB’s final peer review nears, a draft dissent from at least four board members with ties to the oil and gas industry is being challenged by the Americans Against Fracking Coalition. In a letter sent Wednesday to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, the advocacy group, which includes Food and Water Watch along with hundreds of other organizations, said dissenting members’ connections with the fracking industry mean they “have clear conflicts of interest.” While urging the EPA to reject the dissent, the coalition claimed members “do not have any scientific basis for their dissent.”  [Full Story]

Apr 22, 2016
New York Denies Critical Permit for Natural Gas Pipeline
The New York Review of Books
Associated Press

ALBANY, N.Y. — New York environmental regulators have rejected a critical permit needed for a major natural gas pipeline project, saying the project fails to meet standards that protect hundreds of streams, wetlands and other water resources in its path. The Department of Environmental Conservation said Friday it won't issue a water quality permit for the 124-mile Constitution Pipeline from Pennsylvania's shale gas fields to eastern New York. The agency said the project's construction would affect 251 streams and 500 acres of valuable forest as well as extensive wetlands.  [Full Story]

Apr 22, 2016
New York State Department of Environment Conservation Denies Water Quality Certificate Required for Constitution Pipeline
NYS DEC
Press Release

Today, officials from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation announced the denial of the Clean Water Act Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the proposed Constitution Pipeline. Although DEC has granted certificates for other projects, the application by Constitution for these certificates fails to meet New York State's water quality standards. The full decision is outlined in a letter (PDF, 819 KB) by John Ferguson, Chief Permit Administrator with DEC's Division of Environmental Permits and Pollution Prevention.   [Full Story]

Apr 22, 2016
Scientists Who Are Questioning Fracking’s Impact Have Oil Industry Ties, Groups Say
Think Progress
Alejandro Davila Fragoso

As the SAB’s final peer review nears, a draft dissent from at least four board members with ties to the oil and gas industry is being challenged by the Americans Against Fracking Coalition. In a letter sent Wednesday to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, the advocacy group, which includes Food and Water Watch along with hundreds of other organizations, said dissenting members’ connections with the fracking industry mean they “have clear conflicts of interest.” While urging the EPA to reject the dissent, the coalition claimed members “do not have any scientific basis for their dissent.”   [Full Story]

Apr 22, 2016
Watch: River Explodes Into Flames From Methane Coming From Nearby Fracking Sites
EcoWatch
Max Phillips

So much methane gas is now bubbling up through the Condamine River in Queensland, Australia that it exploded with fire and held a large flame. Gas seeping into the river began shortly after coal seam gas operations started nearby and is growing in volume and the stretch of river affected is expanding in length.  [Full Story]

Apr 22, 2016
Gov. Cuomo Rejects the Constitution Pipeline, Huge Win for the Anti-Fracking Movement
EcoWatch
Earthjustice

In a win for climate activists and the anti-fracking movement, and a blow to fossil fuel polluters and the federal regulatory agencies that enable them, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) denied a key permit to companies seeking to build a 124-mile fracked gas pipeline.  [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Horses are being born without the ability to swallow — and fracking could be to blame
Raw Story
LORRAINE BERRY

In New York’s Southern Tier, local newspapers are investigating the connection between a local racetrack owner’s sick foals and the fracking fluids present on his farmland. The Ithaca Journal featured a report by Tom Wilber in which he investigated the ongoing issue with foals being born without the ability to swallow — seventeen of them so far — on the breeding farm of Jeff Gural, owner of the Tioga Downs, Meadowlands Racetrack, and Vernon Downs. The foals have survived, although all of them have had to be transported to Cornell’s School of Veterinary Medicine, located fifty miles north in Ithaca, New York. An earlier study by Cornell professor Robert Oswald and Cornell veterinarian Michelle Bamberger linked the presence of the byproducts of hydraulic fracturing to numerous animal deaths and stillbirths. Their research included twenty-four case studies of multiple farm animals who had either been killed outright by the cocktail of chemicals or later proved unable to successfully reproduce after exposure.  [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Cuomo’s Next Step Against Fracking: Reject the Constitution Pipeline
EcoWatch
Wenonah Hauter

It’s been over a year since New York banned fracking and we find ourselves at a crossroads. We can take the next logical step and reject the dangerous fracked gas infrastructure that increasingly threatens our wellbeing. Or we can continue to rely on fracked gas and accept the myriad risks that come with that choice. Like fracking itself, a maze of proposed gas pipelines, compressor stations and subterranean storage caves pose grave threats to New York’s most precious resource—our abundant supply of clean water.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Celebrated Water Program That Examined Fracking, Oil Sands Is Abruptly Shut Down
Inside Climate News
Andrew Nikiforuk

The Program on Water Issues was not in the back pocket of industry, government or environmental organizations, an expert angered by the closure said.  [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
MYSTERY OF SICK FOALS: Was fracking to blame on PA farm?
Press Connects
Tom Wilber

Yet for all its beauty, Gural's horse-breeding farm holds a disturbing mystery health experts and the federal government are working hard to solve. For three years, the mares have been bearing foals with dysphagia — a rare, life-threatening condition preventing them from swallowing properly.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
SNP campaign group predicts a full fracking ban post-election
Commonspace.scot


SNP MEMBERS organised to oppose unconventional oil and gas extraction - known as fracking - have claimed the party’s manifesto makes a full ban inevitable after any evidence based investigation.  [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Signature time for anti-fracking initiatives
Boulder Weekly
Angela K. Evans

Colorado voters could see two constitutional amendment initiatives on the November ballot that, if passed, would limit oil and gas development near populated areas and would give local governments more authority over such developments. The initiatives are sponsored by Coloradans Resisting Extreme Energy Development (CREED), a Boulder-based grass-roots organization with board members from Boulder, Denver and Durango.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
State fracking inspectors proposed
Standard Speaker


U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta on Wednesday succeeded in amending pipeline safety legislation to protect the interests of states in using their own pipeline inspectors when dealing with federal agencies.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Sanders slams Clinton’s fracking ties in op-ed
Talk Media News
Nick Salazar

Washington (Talk Media News) — Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.) didn’t pull punches over the issue of fracking and Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton’s ties to it in an op-ed published earlier this week. In an op-ed, Sanders denounced the practice of fracking, saying that the toxic chemicals used in fracking are known to cause lung cancer and birth defects as well as a contaminated water supply.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Foes cheer Kinder Morgan decision to suspend pipeline plans Company: Not enough natural gas contracts in New England market
Albany Times Union
Lindsay Ellis

In a decision cheered by local opponents, Kinder Morgan suspended plans for a 419-mile natural gas pipeline connecting Pennsylvania's fracking fields to Boston by winding through local counties.  [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Federal fracking rule in hands of federal judge in Wyoming
Las Vegas Sun
Ben Neary

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — The future of federal rules aimed at protecting land, water and wildlife from energy-production practices including hydraulic fracturing now rests with a judge in Wyoming. U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl last year blocked implementation of rules drafted by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. He acted in response to a legal challenge from the states of Colorado, North Dakota and Utah and Wyoming.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Top Shale Fracking Executive: We Won't Frack the Rich
DeSmog Blog
Sharon Kelly

Fracking companies deliberately keep their wells away from the “big houses” of wealthy and potentially influential people, a top executive from one of the country's most prominent shale drilling companies told a gathering of attorneys at a seminar on oil and gas environmental law earlier this month, according the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
As Oil Jobs Dry Up, Workers Turn to Solar Sector
The Wall Street Journal
Lynn Cook

A few years ago, Sean and Stormy Fravel were riding the oil and gas boom like so many others in West Texas. But when their jobs disappeared along with $100-a-barrel oil prices, they turned to a new type of energy occupation: solar power. Instead of driving an 18-wheeler to haul drilling equipment in and out of the oil patch, the Fravels now install solar panel racking systems and perform quality checks on Alamo 6, a solar farm under construction in McCamey, about 300 miles northwest of San Antonio.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Shale War's Collateral Damage: Europe's Gas Prices
Bloomberg
Anna Shiryaevskaya

Utilities from EON SE to Centrica Plc are beneficiaries as Europe’s two biggest gas suppliers provided a record amount of the fuel in the first quarter, according to Societe Generale SA. The glut discouraged cargoes of U.S. liquefied natural gas and contained growth of imports from Qatar.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Group sues over 'fast track' deep-sea drilling permits
Eagle Tribune


NEW ORLEANS (AP) — An environmental group sued the Interior Department on Wednesday for what it called the "fast track" permitting of potentially dangerous oil and natural gas wells in offshore waters. The action came on the sixth anniversary of the nation's largest offshore oil spill.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Kinder Morgan suspends NED project
The Daily Star
Joe Mahoney

Energy giant Kinder Morgan announced Wednesday that it has suspended its spending on the controversial Northeast Energy Direct pipeline project.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
12 Arrested in Earth Day-Themed Protest Against Gas Storage in Seneca Lake’s Salt Caverns
EcoWatch
Sandra Steingraber

Five feet in diameter and swirling with clouds, a blue and green replica of Planet Earth helped a dozen human inhabitants block three trucks this morning at the main entrance of Crestwood Midstream. The Earth Day-themed civil disobedience action was part of an ongoing campaign against proposed gas storage in Seneca Lake’s abandoned salt caverns.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Celebrated Water Program That Examined Fracking, Oil Sands Is Abruptly Shut Down
Inside Climate Newss
ANDREW NIKIFORUK

Water experts across Canada have reacted with anger and surprise to the closure of one of the nation's most celebrated and effective water study programs at the University of Toronto's Munk School of Global Affairs. For 15 years, the Program on Water Issues (POWI), directed by Adele Hurley, brought together the nation's best scientists and policymakers to debate and report on the nation's hot button water issues in an independent, non-partisan forum.   [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Foes cheer Kinder Morgan decision to suspend pipeline plans
Times Union
Lindsay Ellis

In a decision cheered by local opponents, Kinder Morgan suspended plans for a 419-mile natural gas pipeline connecting Pennsylvania's fracking fields to Boston by winding through local counties. Kinder Morgan's Northeast Energy Direct Pipeline had planned to traverse Schoharie County and Albany County before passing through southern Rensselaer County en route to Massachusetts.  [Full Story]

Apr 21, 2016
Fury Over Fracking
The New York Review of Books
Tim Flannery

What should we think of a corporation that undertakes research on one of its products only to discover that its use could be damaging—and then tries to conceal the potential dangers of that product’s use? An investigation underway by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman promises to shed light on one such alleged case—concerning ExxonMobil, the world’s largest oil company, and the possibility that it misled investors and the public about the dangers of climate change. The story begins in mid-1977, when ExxonMobil’s powerful Management Committee was briefed by James Black, a company scientist, on the potential dangers of climate change. Two years earlier, Syukuro Manabe of the US Weather Bureau and his collaborator Richard Wetherald had published the first computer model that estimated how a doubling of atmospheric concentrations of CO2 would affect Earth’s surface temperature. Their results revealed a “somewhat larger” warming of the lower atmosphere—around 4.3 degrees Fahrenheit—than had been anticipated. It also revealed that the polar regions were likely to warm two to three times faster than lower latitudes, and that worrisome disruptions to the global water cycle might result. The impetus for this landmark study came from the activities of the fossil fuels industry itself: in their introduction Manabe and Wetherald quoted a 1971 estimate by Lester Machta, director of the Air Resources Laboratory, that owing to the burning of fossil fuels, CO2 concentrations would rise by 20 percent by the end of the century.  [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
U.S. Senate passes energy bill to bolster power grid, speed LNG exports
Reuters
Timothy Gardner

WASHINGTON, April 20 (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate passed the first major energy bill in nine years on Wednesday, legislation containing modest measures popular with both Republicans and Democrats to modernize the power grid and speed the permitting process for liquefied natural gas exports. The bill, which passed 85-12, attempts to protect the power grid from extreme weather events such as ice storms and hurricanes, and from cyber attacks. It also aims to spur innovations in storage of power from wind and solar energy. The House of Representatives passed a similar bill last year.  [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
New Analysis Reveals that Majority of Peer-Reviewed Science Shows Health and Environmental Concerns from Fracking
PSE Healthy Energy
Press Release

Oakland, California (April 20, 2016) – A new analysis from PSE Healthy Energy shows that a clearer scientific understanding of the public health and environmental impacts of modern natural gas development is beginning to emerge from the hundreds of scientific studies conducted in recent years.  [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
This Federal Agency Is Facing A Bunch Of Lawsuits For Permitting Natural Gas Terminals
Climate Progress
Samantha Page

Environmentalists are mounting a charge against the agency that permits natural gas infrastructure in an attempt to mitigate the damages caused by fracking and burning fossil fuels. A panel of judges for the D.C. Circuit Court heard arguments Tuesday over whether the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) properly considered the total environmental impacts of Dominion Resources’ Cove Point natural gas liquefaction and export terminal, under construction now in Southern Maryland, or whether its analysis was too narrow. “They have to analyze the impacts of the project as a whole,” Earthjustice attorney Deborah Goldberg told ThinkProgress after the hearing. Earthjustice is representing the plaintiffs — which include the Sierra Club, the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, and a local river protection group — who argue that regulators failed to consider how the export terminal plays a role in the greater environmental degradation caused by the entire natural gas supply chain. The facility will have a liquefaction component, where natural gas is condensed and turned into liquid for shipping. It will add this and export capabilities to a terminal previously used only for LNG imports.  [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
The Senate Just Passed An Energy Bill That Would Make Forests A ‘Carbon Neutral’ Energy Source
Climate Progress
Alejandro Davila Fragoso

The first major update to the nation’s energy policy in eight years passed the Senate Wednesday with bipartisan support, as it concentrates on common ground topics like infrastructure improvements, cyber security, and energy efficiency. Yet an amendment in the bill — dubbed the Energy Policy Modernization Act — that would classify biomass as carbon neutral has angered dozens of environmental organizations, who say it puts forests at risk. Environmentalists had for months questioned an amendment from senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) instructing agencies to develop policies that “reflect the carbon neutrality” of biomass, a source of energy that includes trees and other plants. On Tuesday, more than 75 organizations sent a letter to the bill co-sponsors, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), voicing their opposition to the bill because of its “dangerous” biomass provisions. “This is a really horrible precedent,” said Friends of the Earth Climate and Energy Program Director Benjamin Schreiber, in an email to ThinkProgress. “What is next, will they pass a bill telling government scientists that they must deem coal carbon free?”  [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
Best guess: Natural gas production seen returning in 18 months
Observer-Reporter
Michael Bradwell

Two professionals close to the oil and gas industry predicted Tuesday normal natural gas production in the Marcellus and Utica shales will return in about 18 months.  [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
Pipeline task force was frustrating process, say industry reps
State Impact PA
Marie Cusick

Two members of Governor Tom Wolf’s Pipeline Infrastructure Task Force say it was a frustrating experience. “It was a difficult thing for me personally and professionally,” says Cindy Ivey of the pipeline company, Williams. “I was probably the only task force member called out by name in a very unflattering way. It was a very toxic environment.”   [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
Federal Fracking Rule in Hands of Federal Judge in Wyoming
ABC News
Ben Neary

The future of federal rules aimed at protecting land, water and wildlife from energy-production practices including hydraulic fracturing now rests with a judge in Wyoming. U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl last year blocked implementation of rules drafted by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. He acted in response to a legal challenge from the states of Colorado, North Dakota and Utah and Wyoming.   [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
Ray Rodrigues hasn’t decided whether he’ll bring back fracking legislation in 2017
Saint Peters Blog
Jenna Buzzacco-Foerster

The fifth year might not be the charm when it comes to legislation dealing with hydraulic fracturing. Rep. Ray Rodrigues said he wasn’t sure he will sponsor legislation during the 2017 legislative session to regulate fracking. If he decides against filing a bill next year, it will mark the first time since 2013 the Estero Republican has not carried the fracking issue forward.  [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
FRENZY TO FIZZLE: Fracking fall-off foils some PA businesses
Press Connects
Michael Rubinkam

TOWANDA, Pa. — Jami Patel spends long hours behind the front desk of a nearly empty motel, desperate for someone, anyone, to check in. Hardly anyone ever does, not since the once-booming natural gas industry pulled up stakes amid a prolonged, severe slump in energy prices. "I don't know how much longer I can hold on," lamented Patel, 43. "If it continues like this, the business is going to be dead."   [Full Story]

Apr 20, 2016
Toward an understanding of the environmental and public health impacts of shale gas development: an analysis of the peer reviewed scientific literature, 2009-2015
PSE Healthy Energy


Introduction The body of science evaluating the potential impacts of unconventional natural gas development (UNGD) has grown significantly in recent years, although many data gaps remain. Still, a broad empirical understanding of the impacts is beginning to emerge amidst a swell of research. The present categorical assessment provides an overview of the peer-reviewed scientific literature from 2009–2015 as it relates to the potential impacts of UNGD on public health, water quality, and air quality. We have categorized all available original research during this time period in an attempt to understand the weight and direction of the scientific literature.   [Full Story]

Apr 19, 2016
Federal appeals court hears arguments over LNG exports
NPR State Impact PA
Susan Phillips

The battle over Dominion Energy’s Cove Point liquefied natural gas export terminal in Lusby, MD, is now in the hands of a federal appeals court, even as construction on the facility continues. The D.C. circuit court of appeals heard oral arguments from attorneys representing environmentalists, industry and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on Thursday over whether or not FERC violated the National Environmental Policy Act by approving construction of the export terminal without conducting an environmental impact statement. FERC granted approval to the $3.8 billion project in 2014, and construction on expanding the idled import terminal into an export terminal began in October, 2014. Cabot Oil and Gas has a contract with a Japanese power company to sell 350,000 MMBtu of Marcellus Shale gas per day for 20 years once the Cove Point plant is completed.  [Full Story]

Apr 19, 2016
Exxon Tries To Bury Climate Documents By Claiming First Amendment Rights
Huffington Post
Kate Sheppard and Sane Ferro

ExxonMobil is fighting a subpoena seeking its internal documents on climate change, arguing that the order violates the company’s constitutional rights. It’s an argument that legal experts say is unusual but not unprecedented. Earlier this month, U.S. Virgin Islands Attorney General Claude Walker initiated an investigation into whether Exxon misled the public on climate science. His office is also requesting records from the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based libertarian think tank to which Exxon has previously provided funding. In that subpoena, the AG’s office accuses Exxon of defrauding the government and consumers, and “misrepresenting its knowledge of the likelihood that its products and activities have contributed and are contributing to climate change.”  [Full Story]

Apr 19, 2016
Fracking Exec Reportedly Admits Targeting the Poor, Because They Don’t Have ‘The Money To Fight’
In These Times
JESSICA KOZIK

On Monday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported accounts of unusually candid comments by an oil and natural gas industry executive, Terry Bossert, at a Pennsylvania Bar Institute gathering in Harrisburg this April. “We heard Range Resources say it sites its shale gas wells away from large homes where wealthy people live and who might have the money to fight such drilling and fracking operations,” stated an attendee. Terry Bossert is vice president for legislative and regulatory affairs at Range Resources, a natural gas exploration and production company. Range Resources was the first to tap into Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale, in 2004, kicking off the state's current fracking boom. Some scientists and environmentalists warn that chemicals used in fracking may contaminate the groundwater in surrounding areas, potentially harming residents.   [Full Story]

Apr 19, 2016
Review: ‘How to Let Go of the World’ Ups the Ante on Climate Change
The New York Times
KEN JAWOROWSKI

The film’s title will use up many of the allotted words for this review, so it’s best to be terse when critiquing “How to Let Go of the World and Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change.” Hence, a one-word assessment of this documentary: Tough. As in, tough to watch. Tough to consider. Tough to ignore. Josh Fox, the director, begins in a short-lived state of serenity, relaxing at his rural Pennsylvania home after his community won a battle against fracking companies that wanted to drill in the area. (The possibility of fracking there spurred him to make “Gasland,” an Oscar-nominated documentary from 2010.)  [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
California governor, agencies face legal claims in gas blowout
Reuters
STEVE GORMAN

Hundreds of Los Angeles homeowners who live near the site of the worst U.S. methane leak have filed claims against state regulators and the governor, seeking $3.5 million each in damages for government failures they blame for the gas blowout. Those cases marked the first batch of more than 3,000 such claims expected by the end of this week, opening a new front in litigation stemming from the accident at the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage field, said an attorney for the claimants on Monday.  [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
Bernie Sanders: Fracking presents profound danger
USA TODAY
Bernie Sanders

A growing body of evidence tells us that fracking is a danger to our water supply — our most precious resource. It’s a danger to the air we breathe. It has resulted in more earthquakes. It’s highly explosive. And it’s contributing to climate change. The toxic chemicals used in fracking are known to cause lung cancer and birth defects. Both the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Academy of Sciences have shown clear evidence that hydraulic fracturing can lead to a contaminated water supply.  [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
Polluted Groundwater. Fracking to Blame?
Chromatography Today


But what about polluted groundwater? So far there has been no conclusive evidence of fracking affecting groundwater — and subsequently our water supplies. But a recent paper titled ‘Impact to Underground Sources of Drinking Water and Domestic Wells from Production Well Stimulation and Completion Practices in the Pavillion, Wyoming, Field’ and published in Environmental Science & Technology could change that.   [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
Pa. Attorney General candidates weigh in on fracking
State Impact PA
Katie Colaneri

Democratic candidate for attorney general Josh Shapiro is taking a hard line on gas drillers in a TV ad that began airing more than a week ago. “In the last eight years, the fracking industry has spent over $40 million dollars on lobbying in Pennsylvania,” Shapiro says in the ad, referring to a 2014 report by the watchdog group Common Cause Pennsylvania. The report found the industry spent nearly $50 million lobbying state lawmakers and donating to political candidates between 2007 and 2014.  [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
The Case Against Fracking
Opposing Views
Nicholas Roberts

The energy needs of the United States and elsewhere are only growing each year, but this needs often directly conflict with Americans' desire to live in clean, safe environments. This has led to the controversy surrounding the practice of hydraulic fracturing or "fracking."  [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
Rep. Phillips introduces law to tighten injection-well regulation
Athens News
David DeWitt

Legislation introduced last week by state Rep. Debbie Phillips, D-Albany, seeks to tighten regulations on fracking-waste injection wells in Ohio. “Our state and our region have become a dumping ground for waste produced in other states, exposing our citizens to toxins and carcinogens,” Phillips said announcing the legislation.   [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
It’s Time for Coastal Cities to Wake Up
Truth Out
Josh Fox

The climate science is uncompromising. We’ve already warmed the earth 1 degree Celsius. And we have enough carbon and methane and other greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere and enough heat in the oceans to warm the earth another half a degree Celsius already. So if we stop all greenhouse gas emissions right now, we’ve already reached the 1.5 degree threshold. The current 1 degree rise has already increased extreme weather, caused mammoth floods and unprecedented drought, it has gotten the ice caps to start a menacing thaw. The consequences of 1 degree have been far more severe than we ever imagined and we are on our way to 1.5 no matter what we do.   [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
Energy And The 2016 Presidential Candidates
Forbes
James Conca

Of the five presidential candidates, two believe in some form of “all-of-the-above” strategy as we ramp down fossil fuels, particularly coal. The other three candidates don’t have a well-reasoned energy policy and rely more on the ideology of their base voters.  [Full Story]

Apr 18, 2016
Legal Protest Challenges Fossil Fuels Auction on 75,000 Acres in Nevada Fracking, Drilling Threaten Climate, Sensitive Wildlife, Public Lands
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

RENO, Nev.— Conservation groups filed a formal administrative protest Friday against a Bureau of Land Management plan to auction off nearly 75,000 acres of publicly owned fossil fuels in Lander and Nye counties in Nevada. The oil and gas on these parcels, administered by the Battle Mountain District Office, contain an estimated 419,983 tons of potential greenhouse gas pollution.   [Full Story]

Apr 17, 2016
Gulf, Calhoun counties set to begin oil, gas testing
News Herald
Katie Landeck

As of March 31, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has issued the permits necessary for a Texas-based company to begin exploratory testing, which involves detonating explosive charges underground, in Gulf and Calhoun counties.  [Full Story]

Apr 17, 2016
Water Contamination Found Downstream of West Virginia Injection Well Industry Leaders Say Well Failure Not Cause
Intelligencer
Casey Junkins

WHEELING -Researchers from the University of Missouri and Duke University say they found high levels of chemicals downstream from a West Virginia fracking wastewater disposal site, but industry leaders said this contamination is likely due to a surface spill rather than an injection well failure.  [Full Story]

Apr 16, 2016
40 Students Arrested Demanding Their Schools Divest From Fossil Fuels
EcoWatch
350.0rg

As students across the country engage in nonviolent direct action calling on their administrators to divest from fossil fuels, calling out conflicts of interest embedded within their decision makers over the last two weeks.   [Full Story]

Apr 16, 2016
Fracking debate looms over New York primary as Trump complains about ban
Raw Story
Lucia Graves, The Guardian

In 2014, the state announced a ban, but that faultline still runs through local and national politics, and even through the Democratic presidential primary. Activists fear Hillary Clinton’s pragmatic approach is too soft on fracking, and support her rival Bernie Sanders’ call for a national ban. Clinton supporters, meanwhile, have begun to worry that opposition to fracking would weaken her in a general election.   [Full Story]

Apr 16, 2016
Our green and pleasant land is blighted. And it will get worse A foolhardy government combined with avaricious business equals a bleak future
The Guardian


Tobias Jones paints a bleak picture of life in the countryside (“The British countryside has never had it so bad”, In Focus). Sadly, here in George Osborne’s northern poorhouse, it’s likely to get a lot worse. The government has sold the land beneath our feet to fracking companies such as IGas without either our knowledge or our consent and these companies are now secretly snapping up fields in this area. These purchases allow fracking companies to exploit not only their own land, but everyone else’s within a 2km radius. Fracking is being forced down our throats and those of every other living creature in the forms of air, water and food contamination.  [Full Story]

Apr 16, 2016
On the faultline: New York fracking ban leaves state divided as primary looms
The Guardian
Lucia Graves

For seven years, fracking roiled New York. Back in the summer of 2007, when the gas industry started knocking on doors in Delaware County, a faultline ran right through the home of Mark Dunau and Lisa Wujnovich. Scientists find fracking contaminated Wyoming water after EPA halted study Read more In 2014, the state announced a ban, but that faultline still runs through local and national politics, and even through the Democratic presidential primary. Activists fear Hillary Clinton’s pragmatic approach is too soft on fracking, and support her rival Bernie Sanders’ call for a national ban. Clinton supporters, meanwhile, have begun to worry that opposition to fracking would weaken her in a general election.   [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
Federal official compares pipeline blunders to mistakes that led to railway disaster
National Observer
Mike De Souza

For almost three years, managers and executives at Canadian pipeline companies have been under a microscope. Their industry watchdog has been examining whether they make it easy enough for employees to report and fix anything that might lead to spills, explosions or other serious incidents.   [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
Oregon LNG withdraws Warrenton project
The Daily Astorian


WARRENTON — Oregon LNG informed city officials on Friday that the company will withdraw a proposed $6 billion terminal and pipeline project on the Skipanon Peninsula. Mayor Mark Kujala said he was told by a company representative that Leucadia National Corp., the New York-based holding company behind the project, was no longer willing to bankroll the effort. “That is exactly what I heard from Oregon LNG, is that they would be withdrawing the project,” Kujala said. The mayor said he was told “the holding company — Leucadia — was no longer going to fund the project. So it sounds as though it was a funding or a financing decision that was made.”  [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
This was the climate debate we’ve been waiting for
Grist
Rebecca Leber

Savor it, climate hawks. Global warming had its short and sweet 15 minutes of fame in the ninth — and likely final — Democratic primary debate on Thursday night. Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton had an intense exchange at the CNN/NY1 debate that got to the heart of the two candidates’ different philosophies on climate action. Not only did they scuffle over a topic that has been in the headlines recently — Clinton’s donations from fossil fuel interests — but they also got into it over Clinton’s support for fracking as secretary of state, the merits of a carbon tax, the Paris climate agreement, and the role of nuclear energy.  [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
Democratic Debate Brings Fiercest Exchange Yet on Climate Change, Fracking
EcoWatch


During last night’s Democratic debate at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, a site that was flooded by Hurricane Sandy, presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton displayed the fiercest exchange around climate change yet.  [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
EPA underestimates methane emissions
Science News


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has a methane problem — and that could misinform the country’s carbon-cutting plans. Recent studies suggest that the agency’s reports fail to capture the full scope of U.S. methane emissions, including “super emitters” that contribute a disproportionate share of methane release. Those EPA reports influence the country’s actions to combat climate change and the regulation of methane-producing industries such as agriculture and natural gas production. With EPA’s next annual methane report due to be published by April 15, early signs suggest that the agency is taking steps to fix the methane mismatch. A preliminary draft of the report revises the agency’s methane calculations for 2013 — the most recent year reported — upward by about 27 percent for the natural gas and petroleum sectors, a difference of about 2 million metric tons.   [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
MassDEP: Kinder Morgan misled FERC in bid to cut state forest trees for Berkshire County pipeline
The Republican
Mary Serreze

Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. submitted misleading information to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in its bid to immediately begin cutting trees in the Otis State Forest for a pipeline loop, Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protect staffers stated in April 14 affidavits sworn before the federal agency. The Kinder Morgan subsidiary on April 11 assured the federal pipeline regulators in writing that MassDEP would not require a so-called 401 Water Quality Certificate for Tennessee to cut trees and vegetation along the proposed route of the Connecticut Expansion pipeline in Sandisfield, wrote David Foulis, an analyst for the department's Bureau of Water Resources, and Brian D. Harrington, the bureau's deputy regional director, in their separate statements.  [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
Stop a Pipeline for Fracked Gas
The New York Times
KARENNA GORE

GENERATIONS of the Holleran family have harvested sap from trees on their land in New Milford, Pa. In early March, their small maple syrup business was nearly destroyed when armed federal marshals accompanied men with chain saws onto the family farm and used the power of eminent domain to cut down most of their maple trees. The Hollerans are in the way of the Constitution Pipeline, the 124-mile structure that would carry fracked gas from the Marcellus Shale fields of Pennsylvania to a compressor station in Wright, N.Y. From there, it would connect with the Iroquois and Tennessee pipelines to take the gas to New England, and potentially to Canada. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission almost always approves such pipelines, despite growing evidence of the harm they are doing.  [Full Story]

Apr 15, 2016
Documents: How IOGCC Created Loophole Ushering in Frackquakes and Allowing Methane Leakage
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

Earthquakes caused by injection of shale oil and gas production wastes — and methane leakage from shale gas pipelines — have proliferated in recent years, with both issues well-studied in the scientific literature and grabbing headlines in newspapers nationwide. Lesser-mentioned, though perhaps at the root of both problems, is a key exemption won by the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact (IOGCC) via a concerted lobbying effort in the 1980's. That is, classifying oil and gas wastes as something other than “hazardous” or “solid wastes” under Subtitles C and D of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), thus exempting the industry from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) enforcement.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Will LNG Exports Save the Shale Gas Drilling Industry's Profitability? Not So Fast
DeSmog Blog
Sharon Kelly

In February, the first ever export of LNG from shale gas reached Brazil, leaving from Cheniere Energy's Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana. Last month, a second shipment of American shale gas reached India — but that gas sold for just roughly $5/mcf at the Dabhol LNG import terminal there. In other words, unfortunately for the shale drilling industry, those new shale exports are entering a world market that is also suffering from its own sudden collapse in prices.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
After Bankruptcies, Coal’s Dirty Legacy Lives On
The New York Times
TOM SANZILLO and DAVID SCHLISSEL

THE bankruptcy filing on Wednesday by Peabody Energy, the world’s largest private- sector producer of coal, is the latest in a series of major coal company collapses that threaten to leave behind a costly legacy that will haunt taxpayers and consumers for years. The abandonment of hundreds of mines over the years led Congress in 1977 to pass a law that requires coal companies to clean up after mining. Left untreated, these sites are more than eyesores: They create long-lingering problems including polluted drinking water.  [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
New Documents Show Oil Industry Even More Evil Than We Thought
Huffington Post
Chris D’Angelo

In 1968, a pair of scientists from Stanford Research Institute wrote a report for the American Petroleum Institute, a trade association for America’s oil and natural gas industry. They warned that “man is now engaged in a vast geophysical experiment with his environment, the earth” — one that “may be the cause of serious world-wide environmental changes.” The scientists went on: “If the Earth’s temperature increases significantly, a number of events might be expected to occur including the melting of the Antarctic ice cap, a rise in sea levels, warming of the oceans and an increase in photosynthesis.”  [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders Square Off On Fracking In Key New York, Pennsylvania Primaries
IB Times
Maria Gallucci

The Democratic presidential candidates this month are battling over their green credentials in two delegate-rich states that have starkly different policies on hydraulic fracturing: New York, where the practice is banned, and Pennsylvania, where a fracking boom is fueling the local economy.  [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Fracking’s Total Environmental Impact Is Staggering, Report Finds
Think Progress
Samantha Page

The body of evidence is growing that fracking is not only bad for the global climate, it is also dangerous for local communities. And affected communities are growing in number. A new report, released Thursday, details the sheer amount of water contamination, air pollution, climate impacts, and chemical use in fracking in the United States.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Trump knocks NY's lack of fracking
LoHud
Joseph Spector

That was the message Thursday from Donald Trump, who lamented New York's decision to ban hydraulic fracturing in late 2014. He said while Pennsylvania had an economic boom from gas drilling, New York was left out. New York agreed to a fracking ban in late 2014 after six years of deliberations, with Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his administration deciding that the risks outweighed any economic benefits.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
UK government's fracking definition 'could allow drilling without safeguards'
Business Green
Damian Carrington

Leading geologist warns loophole in government's legal definition of fracking could enable companies to bypass safety precautions The UK government has been accused of including a large loophole in its legal definition of fracking which could enable companies to bypass safety regulations, according to a leading geologist.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Anti-fracking measure supporters get signatures, and arrest threats.
Monterey County Weekly
David Schmalz

For supporters of the proposed ballot measure that would ban fracking and new oil development in Monterey County, there is some good news: Over the last month, petitioners gathered more than 8,000 signatures, eclipsing the approximately 7,500 signatures needed to get the measure on the ballot. The bad news for the petitioners—who have a goal of reaching 15,000 signatures by May 3—is that they are sometimes being threatened with arrest.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Fracking Produces Billions of Gallons in Toxins, Wastewater
TelesurTV


A new report found that fracking in the U.S. produces 250 billion gallons of wastewater and 2 billion chemicals that could contaminate drinking water. The rapid expansion of fracking in the United States is posing major threats to nearby communities by contaminating drinking water and spreading diseases, according to a new report by the Environment America released Thursday.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Anti-Fracking Activists Continue Push for Ban DEP approves seismic testing on Dead Lakes
The County Record
Kelli Peacock Dunn

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection has issued a permit to Cholla Petroleum to begin seismic testing in Calhoun and Gulf counties.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Fracking Bill fails
WCBC Radio


A bill that would have provided protection from fracking operations through liability and chemical disclosure died in Maryland's House of Delegates despite passing the Senate. The Cumberland Times News reports legislation also garnered 450 signatures in support and the backing of 90 Western Maryland businesses, according to Engage Mountain Maryland, a volunteer group with the goal of bringing awareness to the Appalachian region of Maryland.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Uproar in Colombia over fracking plans near one of country’s most unique ecosystems
Columbria Reports
Adriaan Alsema

Locals and Colombia tourism operators are furious after finding out the subsidiary of a US oil company is allowed to explore fracking possibilities near the springs of the Caño Cristales river, one of the country’s most unique ecosystems.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Substantial support for fracking within Lib Dem membership, says election candidate
Holyrood
Liam Kirkaldy

There is still substantial support for fracking within the Scottish Liberal Democrats, according to one of the party’s candidates for the 2016 Scottish Parliament election. Lib Dem members voted in favour of fracking at conference, before the party leadership intervened to reverse the position and insist the party was opposed to the technique.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Controversy on Impacts of Fracking on Groundwater in Wyoming
HazMat
Nicholson

A peer-reviewed study in Environmental Science and Technology (ES&T), has shown that fracking contaminated the groundwater near . The study, written by researchers at Stanford University, suggests that the entire groundwater resource in the Wind River Basin is contaminated with chemicals linked to hydraulic fracturing, also referred to as fracking.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Commission Postpones Action on Fracking Ordinance
Independent News


Alameda County planning commissioners postponed action on a county anti-fracking ordinance, after receiving an 11th hour letter from the only oil driller in the county. The commission was set to act at its meeting April 4. However, a letter dated the previous day from E&B Natural Resources, which has wells in the Altamont, prompted the commission to delay a decision until May 2.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Our last moment to act New documentary calls on elected officials to abandon fracking and turn to renewables
Boulder Weekly
Angela K. Evans

In late 2012, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced he was considering opening New York to fracking, allowing the oil and gas industry to develop the state’s portion of the Marcellus Shale. But local activists, nonprofits, concerned citizens and people like filmmaker Jon Bowermaster and actor/activist Mark Ruffalo banded together in protest. And what began as a fight for their own state turned into a national movement for a full transition to renewables and away from the burning of fossil fuels.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
10 Years of Fracking: Its Impact on Our Water, Land and Climate
EcoWatch


In a single year, fracking wells across the country released at least 5.3 billion pounds of the potent greenhouse gas methane, as much global warming pollution as 22 coal-fired power plants. The statistic is one of many in a new study by Environment America Research & Policy Center that quantifies the environmental harm caused by more 137,000 fracking wells permitted since 2005.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
The Clinton-Sanders New York Primary Debate: Energy In Focus
The Wall Street Journal
JOHN CARNEY

While Brooklyn may be far-removed from the forces controlling energy prices and the fates of energy companies, investors should pay close attention to what happens when Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders debate in Brooklyn ahead of the April 19th New York primary. Energy policy is likely to be a big topic during the debate. Fracking, nuclear power, the Constitution Pipeline and the coal industry will likely come under attack. Solar and wind power are likely to be praised by both candidates.  [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
Clinton-Sanders fracking fracas heats up
Politico
ELANA SCHOR

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are feuding over fracking as they head toward primaries in gas-rich New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland — exposing a rift among Democrats that could haunt her at the party’s convention in July and beyond. The presidential hopefuls’ positions don’t seem vastly different on the surface: Sanders vows to ban the controversial oil- and gas-production technology outright, while Clinton has said she would regulate it so thoroughly that “I do not think there will be many places in America where fracking will continue to take place.” But Sanders’ pledge is the one that has caught fire with grass-roots green activists, who feel emboldened in their crusade against fossil fuels after pushing President Barack Obama to kill the Keystone XL oil pipeline and block drilling off the East Coast.   [Full Story]

Apr 14, 2016
NEWS NOW Bird strike causes Delta NYC-to-Nashville flight to make emergency landing ... Kingston PD arrests NYC man for forgery, parole violation ... NYPD: Bronx man arrested in shooting death of man last week ... Bird strike causes Delta NYC-to-Nashville flight to make emergency landing ... Kingston PD arrests NYC man for forgery, parole violation ... NYPD: Bronx man arrested in shooting death of man last week ... Bill opposes plans for Pilgrim Pipeline
Times Herald Record
James Nani

Assemblyman Frank Skartados introduced a bill Thursday that would put the kibosh on plans to build the Pilgrim Pipeline, a 178-mile crude oil pipeline that would largely run along the Thruway. Skartados, D-Milton, said the pipeline would put communities it would cross at risk. Developers want to build the pipeline from Linden, N.J., to Albany. “The Pilgrim Pipeline poses a serious threat to our community, with the potential to affect our drinking water, farmlands and even the tourism industry that drives our economy,” Skartados said. “For our families, there is no reward that could outweigh these risks, and that’s why I’ll keep fighting to put an end to this proposal.”  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Oil industry knew of 'serious' climate concerns more than 45 years ago
The Guardian
Oliver Milman

The oil industry’s knowledge of dangerous climate change stretches back to the 1960s, with unearthed documents showing that it was warned of “serious worldwide environmental changes” more than 45 years ago. The Stanford Research Institute presented a report to the American Petroleum Institute (API) in 1968 that warned the release of carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels could carry an array of harmful consequences for the planet. The emergence of this stark advice follows a series of revelations that the fossil fuel industry was aware of climate change for decades, only to publicly deny its scientific basis.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Texas faces significant threat of earthquake activity resulting from both natural processes, fracking
The Daily Texan
Forrest Milburn

Texas is one of six states facing the most significant threat from earthquakes as a result of both natural earth shaking and energy extraction processes, according to a recent report. On March 28, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) released maps identifying areas around the country with heightened earthquake activity from both natural earthquakes and those resulting from human activity. USGS seismologist George Choy said the maps are a one-year forecast on natural earthquakes and the effects of wastewater disposal from energy extraction, providing research and data to educate the public and to help governmental officials make more informed environmental and energy decisions. “In the past few years, the increase in oil and gas extraction and the need to dispose of the wastewater has caused a tremendous amount of activity,” Choy said. “The problem is, this activity is short term and it could be controlled by external factors.”  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
State of Waste
Santa Fe Reporter
Elizabeth Miller

Advocates say curbing flares and leaks from natural gas development could boost the state’s bottom line by millions Driving the roads through oil and gas country at night, two kinds of illumination stand out on the desert horizon: the towers of halogen lights that shine on drill rigs while they run 24 hours a day, and the several-foot-tall flames of methane being burned off rather than captured. In the name of millions in lost royalties and reduced environmental impacts, the federal government has taken several stabs at recouping this wasted natural gas—lost through industry practices called flaring and venting, as well as through leaks. An analysis of the methane emissions in New Mexico indicates the state missed out on $50 million in royalties since 2010, according to a report released in March by the Western Values Project, which campaigns for balancing energy development and conservation. “Fixing these leaks will stop the waste of the federal natural gas resource that’s supposed to be produced to the benefit of the taxpayers. Keeping that in the pipeline and not in the air means more revenue for states like New Mexico that rely on that as a big source of budget revenue for state services,” says Jon Goldstein, senior policy manager for the Environmental Defense Fund.   [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
Erie Reader
Melissa A Troutman

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf will speak at Edinboro University on Thursday, April 14 at 7 p.m. after the Communication Studies Annual Spring Banquet. Just a guess, Wolf probably won’t be communicating about the health threats of fracking. According to the news, he’ll cover “key policy initiatives and the state budget” in his Edinboro address, which is expected to last 15 - 20 minutes. After that, he’s taking questions from the audience, and that’s when I hope to finally get a chance to ask Gov. Wolf about fracking in person. It will be 493 days since I started an online petition to get an interview with Gov. Wolf about fracking by the time he speaks Thursday in Edinboro. I’ve sent emails, made phone calls, mailed certified letters, and even re-sent a letter to Governor Wolf written by Dorene Dougherty, a very ill woman who had to evacuate her home to save her own life as fracking encroached. Neither Dorene nor I ever heard back. For six years, I’ve investigated and published about the rights abuses, water contamination, and health problems caused by fracking – problems that were actually studied in New York state, where fracking was banned in order to protect people and the environment. Pennsylvania, on the other hand, still has not conducted a health or environmental impact study, even though high-volume slickwater fracking began here over a decade ago, around the same time the Bush/Cheney Energy Bill of 2005 created the “Halliburton Loophole,” which makes it legal for oil and gas companies to use chemicals in ways that is illegal for you, me, or another industry to use them. The result – people get sick and groundwater used for drinking, cooking, growing food, feeding families, and raising farm animals is contaminated – many times “off the books.”   [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Lead Isn’t the Only Threat to Drinking Water
The Nation
Zoe Carpenter

? The EPA abandoned a study of fracking pollution in Wyoming. Then one of the agency’s scientists kept investigating. ? For about a decade, residents in Pavillion, Wyoming, have wanted to know what’s wrong with their water. The tiny town is surrounded by more than 1,000 gas wells drilled into sandstone, which has been fractured with a high-pressure mix of water and chemicals to release the gas trapped inside. Pavillion was something of a fracking frontier: In the mid-2000s, when residents started to complain of foul-looking water that smelled like gasoline, the American shale-gas revolution was about to explode. The EPA agreed to investigate the Pavillion case, and in 2011 released a draft report that found high levels of carcinogens and at least one chemical linked to fracking in two test wells. Then, in 2013, the agency abruptly passed the inquiry off to state regulators, whose industry-funded reviews have been inconclusive.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
New York and Fracking: Clinton vs Sanders
Insittute for Public Accuracy
Press Release

USA Today reports Bernie Sanders “may have his best chance of challenging [Hillary] Clinton upstate, where he’s pushing an offensive on fracking and trade deals that have hurt manufacturing jobs, an issue that helped him pull off a surprise victory over Clinton last month in Michigan. On Tuesday, the Vermont senator opened a Rochester rally blasting Clinton for promoting fracking in other countries while Secretary of State.” See from Huffington Post: “Bernie Sanders Calls For Total Ban On Fracking In New Ad.” KATE BARTHOLOMEW, ecogreenwolf at gmail.com A member of the Coalition to Protect New York, Bartholomew said today: “There’s only one candidate who has spoken clearly against shale gas extraction — and the other candidate favors and has promoted it. This is significant for anyone involved in fighting climate change or fighting for renewables. “It’s also important when accessing environmental policy to note where the candidate stands on the TPP [Trans-Pacific Partnership] since that deal threatens any environmental protections that are in place. Similarly, Sanders is the reliable candidate on that issue, others seem to shift with the political wind.” Bartholomew noted that many environmentalists are participating in the “Democracy Spring” protests this week. See from Reuters: “Police arrest 400 at U.S. Capitol in protest of money in politics.” See continuing live coverage by TheRealNews.com. She added: “In New York State, thanks to an unprecedented negative response to the DEC’s [Department of Environmental Conservation] process of preparing the Final Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement on fracking, as well as a separate health impact study by the Department of Health, the Governor deferred to the conclusions of those two departments and all high-volume horizontal fracking activity in New York is banned, essentially, for the foreseeable future. “Pennsylvania, on the other hand, is feeling the negative effects of fracking — both environmental and economic, since natural gas prices are plummeting and the promised windfall — both for individuals and localities — rarely materialized.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Sanders injects fracking into battle for NY
The Hill
Devin Henry

Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders has a new line of attack against Hillary Clinton tailor-made for New York voters: that she is too soft on hydraulic fracturing. Sanders has taken a firmer line against the drilling practice than the Democratic front-runner, calling for it to be banned nationwide. He highlighted his fracking stance in an ad released this week, putting the issue front and center as he seeks to make up ground ahead of the crucial New York primary next week, which will award 247 delegates. Green advocates say the anti-fracking message could resonate in the state, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has banned fracking and polls show most voters oppose the practice. “There’s a significant infrastructure of people [in New York] that care about the environment, that understand hydraulic fracturing is extremely bad for the planet,” said Tara Houska, the national campaign director of Honor the Earth and a national adviser to the Sanders campaign on Native American affairs.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Bernie Sanders’ climate consistency: Why he, not Hillary Clinton, should be the choice of people who care about global warming
Daily News
Bill McKibben Opinion

Hillary Clinton’s struggle is with time, and on so many fronts: She’s haunted by her support for the Iraq War when it was popular, by her support for jailing “superpredators” when that was popular, by her support for free-trade agreements or her opposition to gay marriage when that polled well. No small share of her campaign has been devoted to explaining her “evolutions.” But in recent days, the problem has been clearest in regard to energy and climate, thrown into sharp relief by young people who have questioned her about the fossil fuel money that’s always lubricated her campaigns. She’s reacted harshly, telling a young Greenpeace campaigner that she’s “sick” of the “lying,” and then laughing at a college student in Philadelphia who questioned her about ties to fracking lobbyists, telling her to “go read the articles.” In more-sorrowful-than-angry mode she told “Meet the Press” that, “I feel sorry sometimes for the young people who believe this; they don’t do their own research.” Let’s excuse the patronizing tone: Presidential campaigns are long and tiring, and it must be galling to be losing young voters, primary after primary, by record numbers. Because Clinton’s real problem is precisely that young people have done their research. For months now, they’ve been bird-dogging all the presidential campaigns, lining up along the rope lines with those gosh-darned smartphones, and trying to move the conversation.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Here's Why TransCanada's Keystone Pipeline Leaked Again
Vice News
Hilary Beaumont

On April 2, a neighbor spotted oil along the side of a rural road surrounded by green farmland near Freeman, South Dakota, and told landowner Loren Schultz. Schultz took one look at the leaked oil and, according to a local TV station, called TransCanada. A section of the company's buried Keystone pipeline, which pumps crude oil from Alberta to refineries in Illinois and Texas, had been leaking for an unknown amount of time, and TransCanada had no idea. After it was shut down more than a week ago due to the major oil spill, the pipeline is now back up and running. According to a preliminary report, Keystone leaked that day because of a "weld anomaly." VICE News has found the section of pipe that leaked was manufactured overseas in India by a company known in the past to make leaky, substandard pipe. TransCanada installed the section of pipeline in 2009 — the same year the US agency that monitors national pipelines warned there could be failures in that exact same type of pipe. Initially, TransCanada reported a small leak this month of 187 gallons. Then it excavated the buried pipeline and updated that estimate to a whopping 16,800 gallons of oil — nearly 90 times what it first reported.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Bernie Sanders Proposes National Ban on Fracking
MyCentralOregon
ABC News

Sanders has a new addition to his campaign speech. Speaking to crowds around New York state and Pennsylvania in the last week, the progressive Democratic candidate has ratcheted up his focus on environmental issues, specifically talking at length about his opposition to fracking. Last fall, Sanders introduced during sweeping legislation to ban the extract of any fossil fuels on federal lands, but in Binghamton, New York on Monday, the Vermont senator went even further, proposing a national ban on the controversial natural shale gas extraction technology. “In my view, if we are serious about safe and clean drinking water, if we are serious about clean air,” he said. “If we are serious about combating climate change, we need to put an end to fracking not only in New York and Vermont, but all over this country.” Last year, after a significant activist movement, New York prohibited fracking despite the state’s large shale gas resources. The issue works in Sanders favors in two ways, as both a way to contrast his record with his primary opponent as well as highlight recent successes of grassroots organization.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Arabia sees record oil and gas drilling as rest of world slumps: Kemp
Reuters
John Kemp

A record number of rigs are drilling for oil and gas on the Arabian peninsula even as drilling in the rest of the world tumbles in response to low prices. There were almost 290 rigs active in Saudi Arabia and the neighboring states of Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and Oman in March, according to oilfield services company Baker Hughes.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Overnight Energy: Obama offshore drilling rule imminent
The Hill
Timohy Cama

OFFSHORE RULE ON ITS WAY: The Obama administration is planning Thursday to unveil the final version of its well control rule, the biggest offshore drilling rule since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster.   [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Obama administration to issue new oil and gas drilling regulations
Washington Times
Dave Boyer

The Obama administration will issue sweeping new regulations Thursday for offshore oil and natural gas drillers, potentially costly requirements to prevent environmental disasters such as the BP accident and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico six years ago.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Update to Penn Township zoning ordinance moves slowly
TribLive
Tom McGee

An update to Penn Township's zoning ordinance is on hold for at least another month, awaiting action by the township planning and zoning commission.   [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
Study: Oil Activity May Be Cause of East Texas Quakes
The Texas Tribune
Jim Malewitz

Oil and gas activity may have triggered a 4.8 magnitude earthquake that shook East Texas in 2012, new research says. In a peer-reviewed study made public Wednesday, University of Texas at Austin researchers call it “plausible” that underground injections of oil and gas waste triggered a series of temblors — including one of the strongest ever recorded in the area at 4.8 — that rattled Timpson residents in 2012. The study, published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, adds to the growing body of research linking wastewater disposal wells to earthquakes in drilling communities nationwide. Texas, home to thousands of such wells, is the third-most at-risk state for man-made earthquakes, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, behind only Oklahoma and Kansas.  [Full Story]

Apr 13, 2016
What's Fueling the Clinton Campaign?
Truthout
Nicole Colson

Hillary Clinton couldn't help but be spitting mad at the Greenpeace activist who confronted her about the money her campaign has taken from the fossil fuel industry, asking the candidate if she would pledge to reject such money in the future. "I don't have -- I have money from people who work for fossil fuel companies," the Democratic frontrunner snapped, pointing her finger at activist Eva Resnick-Day. "I am so sick. I am so sick of the Sanders campaign lying about me!" But who's doing the lying?  [Full Story]

Apr 12, 2016
Researchers find hundreds of methane leaks at well pads in nation-wide thermal imaging study
Vision Syst ems design


Environmental Defense Fund’s Oil and Gas program has released a new nation-wide report of the most common sites of methane leaks at oil and gas pads. Surprisingly, most of the leaks were traced back to faulty piping, vents or doors on gas tanks in newer, not older, wells. Methane is a much more powerful greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide.  [Full Story]

Apr 12, 2016
Maryland county becomes first in state to say ‘no’ to fracking
Arelis Hernandez
Washington Post

Search Home Page Politics Opinions Sports Local National World Business Tech Lifestyle Entertainment Crosswords Video Photography Washington Post Live Live Chats Real Estate Cars Jobs WP BrandConnect Classifieds Partners washingtonpost.com 1996-2016 The Washington Post Terms of Service Privacy Policy Submissions and Discussion Policy RSS Terms of Service Ad Choices Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google Plus Share via Email More Options Maryland Politics Maryland county becomes first in state to say ‘no’ to fracking Resize Text Print Article Comments 21 Book mark article Read later list Saved to Reading List Protesters gather outside the Maryland Statehouse to express concerns about fracking. (Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post) By Arelis R. Hernández April 12 at 3:32 PM Lawmakers in Prince George’s County voted unanimously on Tuesday to ban hydraulic fracking, becoming the first local jurisdiction in Maryland to prohibit the extraction of natural gas within its borders since the state’s moratorium on the practice went into effect. Council member Mary A. Lehman (D-Laurel) sponsored the legislation that would amend the zoning ordinance to forbid natural-gas drilling across the county and particularly in the rural southern Prince George’s communities sitting on top of the Taylorsville Basin. The basin — which runs through southern Maryland under the Potomac River and into Virginia — is a potentially untapped natural-gas reserve, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. But it spans an ecologically sensitive area that residents and activists have long fought to protect from excessive development, industry and power plants.  [Full Story]

Apr 12, 2016
Bernie Sanders Calls for Nationwide Ban on Fracking
EcoWatch


Bernie Sanders doubled down on his stance on fracking ahead of the New York primary this week, advocating for a nationwide ban with a new campaign advertisement and a speech in upstate New York.  [Full Story]

Apr 12, 2016
Calls For Permanent Closure of Aliso Canyon NatGas Storage Facility As Californians Face Blackouts
DeSmogBlog
Mike Gaworecki

Last week, California regulators and Southern California Gas Company, which operates the Aliso Canyon Storage Facility, issued a report warning that a continued shutdown of the facility, the site of the worst methane leak in state history, would lead to blackouts throughout the summer. The regulators and the company have proposed restarting gas injections into the Aliso Canyon facility in the coming weeks, but Porter Ranch area residents — 1,800 of whom had to be evacuated due to health impacts of the methane leak — are challenging the report’s findings and calling for permanent closure of Aliso Canyon, one of the largest gas storage facilities in the US. Aliso Canyon has been shut down since January. The leak started in October of last year. Two and a half months later, Governor Jerry Brown finally declared a state of emergency, but it would take SoCalGas, as the company is known, another month and a half to finally stop the leak.  [Full Story]

Apr 12, 2016
Bernie Sanders Calls for National Fracking Ban, Addresses Fracking Related Methane Pollution
DeSmogBlog
JUSTIN MIKULKA

As Bernie Sanders attempts an upset in New York’s April 19th primary, he has begun to increase his focus on the issues of fracking and climate change. And since the state of New York banned fracking in 2015 and a recent Gallup poll reports only 25% of Democrats nationwide support fracking this would appear to be smart politics. In his first of three rallies across New York on April 11th Sanders took the time to address the issue and highlight the major differences on the issue between himself and Secretary Clinton for the audience in Albany. With the number of anti-fracking signs in the building, the strong response to the message was not surprising.   [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Sanders brings anti-fracking, anti-Wall Street message to Albany
Capital NY
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — In front of a crowd that included environmentalists, college students, mothers with young children, and tie-dyed Woodstock types, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Monday celebrated the state's fracking ban and its decision to raise the minimum wage to $15 in many places. About 4,000 people jammed into a former National Guard armory in the Arbor Hill section of the capital's downtown to hear the Brooklyn native, who is challenging Hillary Clinton in New York's April 19 presidential primary. Sanders took the stage just hours after his campaign released an ad featuring actress Susan Sarandon and promising that he would ban fracking “everywhere.” It’s an issue on which Sanders and Clinton differ dramatically. The former U.S. senator from New York has characterized natural gas as a bridge fuel. In New York, Sanders’ base clearly aligns with the environmental movement, and he has criticized Clinton for accepting campaign money from fossil fuel interests and Wall Street.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Shale Gas Headed for Biggest Drop in 3 Years, Sharing Oil's Pain
Bloomberg
Naureen Malik

Natural gas production from America’s biggest shale formations is poised to slide by the most in three years as tumbling crude oil prices force the nation’s energy explorers to cut back on drilling for both fuels. Gas output from the top seven shale deposits will fall by 1.1 percent to 45.93 billion cubic feet a day from April, the biggest percentage decline since March 2013, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its Drilling Productivity Report Monday. The retreat is led by the oil-rich Eagle Ford deposit in Texas and the Niobrara shale in Colorado and neighboring states, where gas is pumped as a byproduct of crude extraction.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Sanders applauds NY's fracking ban
Poughkeepsie Journal
Joseph Spector

ALBANY -- Bernie Sanders praised supporters Monday in the Southern Tier for beating back hydraulic fracturing in New York, saying the state's ban is important to protect the environment and fight climate change. New York agreed to a fracking ban in late 2014 after six years of deliberations, with Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his administration deciding that the risks outweighed any economic benefits. "I want to applaud you for standing up to Governor Cuomo and demanding that New York state ban fracking," Sanders said in a speech in Binghamton.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Sanders calls for national fracking ban, with eye on Clinton
The Washington Post
David Weigel

“Hillary Clinton just said, ‘I support the New York fracking ban,’ ” Fox said. "But Hillary Clinton, as secretary of state, developed the global shale gas initiative, which sold fracking to 30 countries worldwide. And she is advocating for a ‘natural gas bridge to the future.’ What does that mean? It means frack gas pipelines crisscrossing everywhere. It means 300 new pipelines that will last for decades.” When he took the stage, the brown water replaced by something drinkable, Sanders repeatedly promised to ban fracking and compared the anti-fracking movement to other great bottom-up causes. “It didn’t happen because the governor woke up one day and said: 'Oh, why didn’t I think of that?'” said Sanders. “He did it because he’s a good politician, and that’s fair enough. He responded to the people.”  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Bernie Sanders calls for nationwide fracking ban in new TV ad
Times Union
Matthew Hamilton

After applauding at a Monday morning rally the people of the Binghamton area for “standing up to Gov. Cuomo” and demanding a state ban on hydraulic fracturing — which Cuomo obliged — Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’ campaign announced it would air a new television ad calling for a nationwide ban on the practice. “No Fracking Anywhere” highlights Sanders as “the only candidate for president who opposes fracking everywhere.” “Bernie, he can’t be bought by them,” a narrator states, referring to companies that would engage in fracking, “because he’s funded by you.”   [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Bernie Sanders Proposes Fracking Ban and Attacks Hillary Clinton on the Environment
The New York Review of Books
Yamiche Alcindor

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. — Bernie Sanders, campaigning across New York State on Monday, called for a nationwide ban on fracking and pointedly criticized Hillary Clinton for her record and stances on environmental issues. The Vermont senator began his day speaking to an estimated 5,000 people in Binghamton and by releasing a new television ad that called for the end of fracking across the country. Mr. Sanders said Mrs. Clinton has advocated for natural gas pipelines that will hurt the environment, and that as secretary of state she had rewarded companies through fracking expansions. He also expressed support for climate change activists who rallied to get fracking banned in New York.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Bernie Sanders Talks Fracking, Free Tuition and Wealth Inequality During Packed Binghamton Town Hall
TWC News
Alexa Green

The loudest applause by far came when Sanders addressed an issue that hits close to home in the Southern Tier -- fracking. He applauded the region for standing up to Governor Andrew Cuomo and banning fracking, but says more work needs to be done. "In my view, if we are serious about safe and clean drinking water, if we are serious about clean air. If we are serious about protecting the health of our children and our families, if we are serious about combating climate change, we need to put an end to fracking, not only in New York and Vermont, but all over this country," said Sanders.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Introducing IOGCC: The Most Powerful Oil and Gas Lobby You’ve Never Heard Of
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

The Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC) is far from a household name, but a new investigation published by InsideClimate News' Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Lisa Song may have just put what is likely the most powerful oil and gas lobbying node you've never heard of on the map. Titled, “Is the IOGCC, Created by Congress in 1935, Now a Secret Oil and Gas Lobby?,” the article's origins lay in the hundreds of documents obtained from open records requests and historical archives by me and Jesse Coleman, a researcher at Greenpeace USA, that are part of an ongoing investigation into IOGCC. Song's article for the award-winning InsideClimate News reveals documents that show for the first time that it was IOGCC at the front and center, and not just Halliburton, which created what many now know as the Halliburton Loophole.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Oil Giants Spend $115 Million A Year To Oppose Climate Policy
Huffington Post
Casey Williams

Major fossil fuel companies and trade groups shell out nearly $115 million a year to oppose efforts to reduce carbon emissions, according to a new report from the British research organization Influence Map. The largest share of the money comes from the American Petroleum Institute, the country’s largest trade organization for oil and gas producers. It reportedly spends $65 million annually in efforts to block climate policy. API is followed by Exxon Mobil, which spends $27 million, and Shell, which spends $22 million a year on anti-climate advocacy. The rest of the money comes from smaller fossil fuel companies and trade organizations.   [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Chesapeake Pledges Almost Entire Company as Debt Collateral
Bloomberg
Joe Carroll

Chesapeake Energy Corp. pledged almost all of its natural gas fields, real estate and derivatives contracts to maintain access to a $4 billion line of credit as the shale gas producer grapples with falling energy prices. The stock was the top performer in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index. Chesapeake amended a secured revolving credit agreement that matures in 2019 with lenders, who agreed to postpone the next evaluation until June 2017, the Oklahoma City-based company said in a statement Monday. Such reassessments normally occur twice a year. In exchange, Chesapeake pledged “substantially all of the company’s assets, including mortgages encumbering 90 percent of all the company’s proved oil and gas properties” as collateral, according to a regulatory filing on Monday.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Sanders applauds fracking ban in Southern Tier
LoHud
Joseph Spector

ALBANY -- Bernie Sanders praised supporters Monday in the Southern Tier for beating back hydraulic fracturing in New York, saying the state's ban is important to protect the environment and fight climate change.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Report: Potentially Dangerous Fracking Chemicals Used in California
Public News Service


SACRAMENTO, Calif. – California has almost 50,000 oil wells and more than 4,100 gas wells – and a new report says federal law allows companies to use chemicals for drilling and fracking with virtually no health testing and then use confidentiality claims to hide basic information on what's being injected. The report, by the nonprofit advocacy group the Partnership for Policy Integrity, reviewed EPA records and found that health information was made public in only two of 99 cases.   [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Report: Federal Law Lets Oil and Gas Companies Hide Data on Chemicals
Public News Service


HELENA, Mont. – Montana has about 4,400 oil wells and 6,700 gas wells – and a >new report says companies are hiding basic data on the chemicals they use – under the guise of confidentiality – and it's completely legal.   [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Fracking inquiry comes to town
NT News
Christopher Walsh

A SENATE Inquiry into Unconventional Gas Mining will roll into Darwin this morning and is expected to attract a large crowd of concerned Territorians. Naomi Hogan, with NT Lock the Gate Alliance, said the inquiry would help get to the bottom of an issue that has “caused an uproar” in rural areas across the NT.   [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Video: Sanders answers our questions on jobs, fracking
Press Connects
John R. roby

We asked Sen. Bernie Sanders how his policies on jobs, economic opportunity and environmental protection would affect the Southern Tier. Here's how he answered.   [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Supporters cleared to gather signatures for anti-oil and gas ballot proposal
Denver Business Journal
Cathy Proctor

Supporters of a ballot proposal to expand Colorado’s existing buffer zones surrounding oil and gas operations from 500 feet to 2,500 feet, a move that if approved by voters would ban drilling across a wide area of the state, can start gathering the 98,492 valid signatures needed to be on the 2016 ballot.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Big Oil Is a Major Booster for Clinton’s Campaign
AlterNet
Jim Naureckas

FAIR.org readers took action in response to “Did Sanders Lie About Clinton’s Oil Money? NPR Factchecker Can’t Be Bothered to Check” (4/1/16). They got a response from NPR ombud Elizabeth Jensen (4/5/16) and a do-over from NPR factchecker Peter Overby (4/6/16)—but NPR’s coverage still leaves a lot to be desired in terms of forthrightly addressing the issue of fossil-fuel funding in the Democratic presidential race. In a column that addressed complaints about NPR’s Trump coverage, Jensen wrote:  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Harness only wind, water and sun to energize New York
Times Union
Pramilla Malick and James Cromwell

Many activists gathered in Albany last week to call on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to "Save New York from FERC," the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. But the real question is: Who will save New York from itself? Despite the ban on fracking, New York is now faced with an unprecedented proliferation of gas infrastructure such as pipelines and compressor stations, which also carry inherent health and safety risks. While activists and impacted residents ask that Cuomo reject state permits to stop these projects, so far they have channeled most of their fury against FERC, the agency that grants the project's ultimate approval.  [Full Story]

Apr 11, 2016
Fort Worth school district settled with Chesapeake for $1 million
Star-Telegram
Max B. Baker

FORT WORTH The Fort Worth school district settled its lawsuit with Chesapeake Energy over natural gas royalties for $1 million, according to documents released Monday after the Texas attorney general decided that the information is public. The attorney general’s office ordered the district to release details of the out-of-court settlement despite efforts by Chesapeake to keep it private through a confidentiality agreement signed by both parties in December. The Star-Telegram, along with the city of Fort Worth, sought to have the settlement agreement, approved by the Fort Worth school board in January, released under the Texas Public Information Act.   [Full Story]

Apr 10, 2016
The human face of fracking in North Dakota – in pictures
The Guardian


In 2006, Eli Reichman began photographing a ranching community in the fracking fields of western North Dakota. For the last decade, he has documented the cultural and social breakdown of an agricultural community being pressured to compromise in order to stay on land originally homesteaded by their ancestors in the early 1900s.   [Full Story]

Apr 10, 2016
Our self-destructive gas industry Natural-gas executives are their own worst enemy
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
John Hanger Opinion

For the gas industry to lose so much support so quickly, even as its huge production delivers energy bargains to heating and electricity consumers, is astonishing, but the gas industry keeps damaging itself every day, ignoring louder and louder alarm bells.   [Full Story]

Apr 10, 2016
Climate Rally for Bernie Sanders Draws 1,000 Anti-Fracking Activists in Upstate New York
EcoWatch
Sandra Steingraber

Yesterday afternoon, in an old vaudeville music hall in downtown Kingston, New York, Bernie Sanders’ campaign held a rally “for clean energy and safe climate” to build support for the presidential candidate and mobilize the Hudson Valley, Catskills and Southern Tier to fight climate change in advance of New York’s Democratic primary election on April 19. Sanders himself was not on hand—nor was he part of the billing. Nevertheless, more than 1,000 people packed the damp, chilly hall to standing room only capacity to hear from anti-fracking leaders, as well as organizers from the campaign itself, who instructed the audience members in the art of door-to-door canvassing, signed them up for tours of duty, and, when the rally ended, sent them out into the community to knock on doors, phone bank and turn out the vote.  [Full Story]

Apr 10, 2016
Wind and solar are crushing fossil fuels worldwide
The Denver Post
Tom Randall

U.K., the original coal superpower, now produces less power from coal than it has since at least 1850 Wind and solar have grown seemingly unstoppable. While two years of crashing prices for oil, natural gas and coal triggered dramatic downsizing in those industries, renewables have been thriving. Clean energy investment broke new records in 2015 and is now seeing twice as much global funding as fossil fuels. One reason is that renewable energy is becoming ever cheaper to produce. Recent solar and wind auctions in Mexico and Morocco ended with winning bids from companies that promised to produce electricity at the cheapest rate, from any source, anywhere in the world, said Michael Liebreich, chairman of the advisory board for Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).   [Full Story]

Apr 10, 2016
Study: Harmful chemicals found in creek near fracking wastewater well site
Columbia Tribune
Alan Burdziak

Researchers from the University of Missouri and Duke University soon will publish a study showing activity related to high levels of chemicals that cause hormonal problems in humans and wildlife in a creek near a well that stores wastewater from hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking.   [Full Story]

Apr 10, 2016
Climate Rally for Bernie Sanders Draws 1,000 Anti-Fracking Activists in Upstate New York
EcoWatch
Sandra Steingraber

Yesterday afternoon, in an old vaudeville music hall in downtown Kingston, New York, Bernie Sanders’ campaign held a rally “for clean energy and safe climate” to build support for the presidential candidate and mobilize the Hudson Valley, Catskills and Southern Tier to fight climate change in advance of New York’s Democratic primary election on April 19.   [Full Story]

Apr 9, 2016
Pennsylvania AG candidate Shapiro calls for fracking accountability Democratic candidate vows to hold oil and gas drillers criminally liable for violations
Philly Voice
Michael Tanenbaum

“In the last eight years, the fracking industry has spent over $40 million on lobbying in Pennsylvania,” Shapiro says in the 30-second spot. “So it’s no surprise that although they’ve had over 4,000 violations, all they’ve gotten is just a slap on the wrist.”  [Full Story]

Apr 9, 2016
'Unprecedented' Youth Climate Case Against Government Moves Forward
Common Dreams
Nadia Prupis

A federal judge in Oregon on Friday ruled that the lawsuit brought against the U.S. government by a group of youths last August can go to trial—a huge victory for the case climate activists are calling "the most important lawsuit on the planet right now." The lawsuit, filed by 21 plaintiffs ages 8-19, and climate scientist Dr. James Hansen, states that the federal government is violating their right to life, liberty, and property, as well as their right to public trust resources, by enabling continued fossil fuel extraction and use. U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas Coffin in Eugene, who called the case "unprecedented," rejected motions by federal lawyers and representatives of fossil fuel groups to dismiss the lawsuit. He stated in his decision (pdf) that the plaintiffs "give this debate justiciability by asserting harms that befall or will befall them personally and to a greater extent than older segments of society."   [Full Story]

Apr 9, 2016
Issues to watch in New York primary
Press Connects
Jon Campbell

ALBANY — For the first time in decades, New York matters. It’s a surprising statement about a state that, as home to the nation’s most-populous city and media capital, isn’t starved for attention.  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
New York energy policy now an issue in Clinton-Sanders contest
Politico New York
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — Hillary on fracking. Bernie on Indian Point. Energy policy in New York has entered the national conversation as the media focuses on the state's April 19 presidential primary, one of the most competitive in years.   [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Researchers Find No Shortcuts for Spotting Wells That Leak the Most Methane
Inside Climate Newss
Phil McKenna

It is difficult, if not impossible, to predict which oil and gas wells will emit large amounts of methane, a comprehensive study of more than 8,000 active facilities across the U.S. finds. Researchers were looking for ways to predict which wells leak the most, following prior studies that showed "superemitters" contribute the vast majority of oil and gas fields' emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. If researchers could uncover a pattern, it would make predicting those superemitters and reducing their emissions easier. "It makes things a little more challenging," said lead author David Lyon, a scientist with the Environmental Defense Fund. "You are going to have to look at all the sites to find the high emissions."   [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Rope-Line Questions Push Hillary Clinton to Address Climate, Energy Issues
Inside Climate Newss
SHEILA V KUMAR

When Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton erupted in anger at a question along a rope line about campaign contributions from fossil fuel donors last week, it made news because of the previously placid nature of the Democratic presidential nomination race between Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders. But it also highlighted a new strategy by activists to get their issues addressed by the candidates. The video clip from a Greenpeace activist captured Clinton snapping, "I'm so sick of the Sanders campaign lying about me. I'm sick of it," and the exchange was instantly swept into the major media coverage of the campaign.   [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Think Tank With Fossil-Fuel Ties Subpoenaed in AG's Climate Inquiry
Inside Climate Newss
JOHN H. CUSHMAN JR.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute, a conservative Washington, D.C., think tank and one of the fossil fuel industry's most steadfast allies, disclosed on Thursday that the attorney general of the U.S. Virgin Islands is demanding to see records of the group's donors and activities involving climate policy. The subpoena represents a broadening of a multifaceted legal inquiry into whether fossil fuel companies broke any laws as they sought for decades to undermine the scientific consensus and head off forceful action to address the climate crisis.  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
The Scariest Part Of California’s Gas Leak Wasn’t Rashes And Bloody Noses. It’s What Happens Next.
Think Progress
Samantha Page

But the scariest part might not be the headaches, dizziness, difficulty breathing, and irritated eyes. It’s that these illnesses are signs that the system failed to protect this small neighborhood in Los Angeles. In a state that uses 2.34 trillion cubic feet of natural gas every year, the system is everywhere — and nowhere more so than Porter Ranch.  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Everything you need to know about ‘fractivism 2.0’ for New York’s primary
Fusion
Ari Phillips

On April 19, when New Yorkers get their turn to vote on the country’s next leader, the future of natural gas—specifically gas that comes from hydraulic fracturing—will be on many people’s minds. Clean energy and climate activists are hoping to build on the attention a highly public skirmish between Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders about the role of fossil fuel money in campaigns has already brought to the New York race. At the same time, illustrating the success of the multi-year, multi-pronged anti-fracking movement in the state, which has now evolved into ‘fractivism 2.0’—a broader endeavor pushing for change across the energy and climate platforms—could give a boost of momentum to these issues at the national level.  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
New York energy policy now an issue in Clinton-Sanders contest
PoliticoNewYork
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — Hillary on fracking. Bernie on Indian Point. Energy policy in New York has entered the national conversation as the media focuses on the state's April 19 presidential primary, one of the most competitive in years. In recent days, the candidates have weighed in on the closure of Indian Point and Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s fracking ban, and advocates are now making an aggressive push to get the campaigns of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former secretary of state Hillary Clinton to come out against the proposed Constitution pipeline.   [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Veresen and ITOCHU Agree Key Terms for Jordan Cove Liquefaction Capacity
Market Wired


CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - April 8, 2016) - Veresen Inc. ("Veresen") (TSX:VSN) is pleased to announce that it has reached preliminary agreement with respect to certain key commercial terms with ITOCHU Corporation ("ITOCHU") for the long-term sale of natural gas liquefaction capacity at the Jordan Cove LNG facility. Veresen is developing the Jordan Cove LNG facility in the International Port of Coos Bay in Oregon, USA. The preliminary agreement signed today contemplates the purchase by ITOCHU of 1.5 million tonnes per annum of natural gas liquefaction capacity for an initial term of 20 years. This agreement is subject to the negotiation of a mutually acceptable, definitive liquefaction tolling agreement, which Veresen and ITOCHU will continue to work together to conclude.  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
The Scariest Part Of California’s Gas Leak Wasn’t Rashes And Bloody Noses. It’s What Happens Next.
ThinkProgress
Samantha Page

Tatiana Khanlian is 2 years old. Over four months this winter, she had rashes along her arms, spontaneous bloody noses, mood swings, and a decreased appetite, her father says. Tatiana’s older brothers, ages 5 and 8, are old enough to know they couldn’t go outside, but not old enough to understand why. “Imagine keeping kids away from playing outside,” their father, Gabriel, said. It started in October. A pungent, sulfury smell, not unlike rotten eggs, hung over the neighborhood. By January, even when just whiffs of the stuff were floating through the neighborhood, it was still enough to cause headaches and watery eyes in newcomers. People who had been exposed for months were even more sensitive.  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Veresen files appeal of Jordan Cove LNG denial, signs second Japanese customer
Calgary Herald
DAN HEALING

Veresen Inc. has filed a request for a re-hearing with the U.S. energy regulator, hoping to overturn its denial of permission to build the $5.3-billion Jordan Cove LNG facility in Oregon. Spokeswoman Dorreen Miller said the filing to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission was expected to be made Friday, the same day the Calgary-based firm announced it has signed a second Japanese customer to a preliminary take-away agreement for 1.5 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas per year for 20 years. “We understand the FERC has 30 days to respond to our request for re-hearing,” Miller said. If granted, “they will be looking at all the evidence that we’re submitting.”  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Gas driller wants judge to set aside $4.24M jury verdict
WBNG
Nicky Hickling

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) -- One of the largest natural gas producers in Pennsylvania is asking a U.S. magistrate judge to set aside a $4.24 million jury verdict that found the company polluted the well water of two families. Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. has maintained its drilling wasn't responsible for elevated methane levels in water wells in the northeastern Pennsylvania village of Dimock.  [Full Story]

Apr 8, 2016
Think Tank With Fossil-Fuel Ties Subpoenaed in AG's Climate Inquiry
Inside Climate News
John H. Cushman, Jr.

The subpoena of the Competitive Enterprise Institute by the Virgin Islands AG represents a widening of the investigations into Exxon and other companies. The Competitive Enterprise Institute, a conservative Washington, D.C., think tank and one of the fossil fuel industry's most steadfast allies, disclosed on Thursday that the attorney general of the U.S. Virgin Islands is demanding to see records of the group's donors and activities involving climate policy.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Scientists find fracking contaminated Wyoming water after EPA halted study Dangerous levels of chemicals found in underground water, while waste was dumped in unlined pits and barriers to protect groundwater were inadequate
The Guardian
Oliver Milman

Two scientists have highlighted dangerous water contamination from a fracking operation in Wyoming, three years after the US Environmental Protection Agency decided to abandon its investigation into the matter. The report found there were dangerous levels of chemicals in the underground water supply used by the 230 residents of Pavillion, a small town in central Wyoming. Levels of benzine, a flammable liquid used in fuel, were 50 times above the allowable limit, while chemicals were dumped in unlined pits and cement barriers to protect groundwater were inadequate, the research found.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Keystone pipeline leak estimate grows to 16,800 gallons of oil
CNN Money
Matt Egan

TransCanada now believes the Keystone pipeline has leaked about 16,800 gallons in South Dakota, a dramatic increase from initial estimates. The leak was discovered on Saturday and forced a key section of the controversial pipeline to be shut down. TransCanada (TRP) initially told regulators the spill totaled about 187 gallons of oil. TransCanada told CNNMoney that while the company has "made progress" in trying to find the source of the leak, it has "yet to pinpoint the source."  [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
New water concerns bubble up in Barnett Shale
WFAA
Brett Shipp

WISE COUNTY, TX – Several residents of a North Texas community say their well water is making them so sick they have stopped drinking it. They also say their pleas for help have gone unheeded. They live in an unincorporated residential development called Chisholm Springs, just north of Fort Worth in southern Wise County. All 200 homes in the community are on a common water well system. From street level, Chisholm Springs seems like an isolated slice of the American Dream. But a satellite view reveals that residents are not so alone. They are, in fact, surrounded by dozens of drilling pad sites in the heart of the Barnett Shale. one of the world's largest natural gas fields. Some say that's a concern.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Scientists find fracking contaminated Wyoming water after EPA halted study
The Guardian
Oliver Milman

Two scientists have highlighted dangerous water contamination from a fracking operation in Wyoming, three years after the US Environmental Protection Agency decided to abandon its investigation into the matter. The report found there were dangerous levels of chemicals in the underground water supply used by the 230 residents of Pavillion, a small town in central Wyoming. Levels of benzine, a flammable liquid used in fuel, were 50 times above the allowable limit, while chemicals were dumped in unlined pits and cement barriers to protect groundwater were inadequate, the research found.  [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Middle America has become an epicenter for earthquakes — and scientists now know why
Tech Insider


A new report from the US Geological Survey has revealed that the oil and gas industry is causing earthquakes in the Central and Eastern United States at an alarming rate. Fracking is part of the problem, but the report states that most human-induced quakes are caused by the oil and gas industry's use of injection wells to dispose of wastewater – the contaminated liquid that gets pumped out of the well during oil and gas extraction.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Oil and gas wastewater disposal may harm West Virginia waterways Scientists draw conclusions after study at natural gas and oil extraction wastewater disposal facility
EurekAlert


COLUMBIA, Mo. - Unconventional oil and gas (UOG) operations combine directional drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," to release natural gas and oil from underground rock. Recent studies have centered on potential water pollution from this process that may increase endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in surface and ground water and whether populations living near these operations have an increased risk of disease. Now, researchers from the University of Missouri (MU) report high levels of EDC activity in the surface water near a hydraulic fracturing wastewater disposal facility in West Virginia. Scientists warn that this level of activity may be associated with negative health effects in aquatic organisms, other animals and humans.  [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Clinton laughs off activist's fracking fundraising request
The Hill
Devin Henry

Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton on Wednesday laughed off concerns from an anti-fracking activist who asked her to reject future donations from the hydraulic fracturing industry. While shaking hands with supporters at a campaign rally, a University of Pittsburgh student asked Clinton, “Will you reject money from registered fracking lobbyists?” according to a video released by climate group 350 Action. Clinton laughed and told the student, “Go read the articles. I’ve debunked all of that.”   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Another reason to ban fracking Science finds groundwater contamination due to hydraulic fracturing
News Review
Opinion

A recent study published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Science & Technology suggests for the first time that hydraulic fracturing—that controversial oil-extraction method known as fracking—can, indeed, contaminate groundwater. In fact, the study reveals, it already has.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Toxic biocides may not be needed routinely at fracking sites, study shows Tests find that some fracking sites don’t contain pipeline-fouling microbes
Cen.acs.org
Elizabeth K Wilson

When oil and gas companies extract fuel from the earth via fracking, they routinely add biocides such as glutaraldehyde to the high-pressure water they use to fracture rock formations deep underground. These compounds are a preemptive strike against microbes that produce hydrogen sulfide, which can corrode pipelines.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Democratic Senate Candidates Spar Over Fracking
WESA 90.5
Reid Frazier, THE ALLEGHENY FRONT

The Democratic primary race for the U.S. Senate is heating up, and sparks are flying on a topic that’s always hot in Pennsylvania—fracking. At a debate this week, Braddock Mayor John Fetterman and former congressman and Navy Vice Admiral Joe Sestak both tried to brand their opponent, Katie McGinty, as a friend of fracking.  [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Down on fracking Most Americans don’t approve of hydraulic fracturing
News Review


More than ever, the American public is opposed to hydraulic fracturing—the method of oil extraction also known as fracking—which now accounts for half of U.S. oil production. A recent Gallup poll asked a random sample of about 1,000 adults whether they favor or oppose fracking as a means of increasing the production of natural gas and oil in the U.S., finding that 51 percent of respondents opposed it, 36 percent approved and 13 percent had no opinion. Last year, Gallup found that only 40 percent of Americans opposed fracking. The dip in approval is likely due to increased media coverage of environmental concerns, such as fracking’s connection to manmade earthquakes.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
EPA approves fracking chemicals despite lack of health tests
Ohio.com
Bob Downing

From a press release today: New Report: Fracking, Drilling Chemicals Approved by EPA Despite Lack of Health Tests Companies exploit Toxic Substances Control Act to hide information on chemical identities, risks; Congressional reform effort would not fix problems   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Everything you need to know about ‘fractivism 2.0’ for New York’s primary
Fusion
Ari Phillips

On April 19, when New Yorkers get their turn to vote on the country’s next leader, the future of natural gas—specifically gas that comes from hydraulic fracturing—will be on many people’s minds. Clean energy and climate activists are hoping to build on the attention a highly public skirmish between Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders about the role of fossil fuel money in campaigns has already brought to the New York race. At the same time, illustrating the success of the multi-year, multi-pronged anti-fracking movement in the state, which has now evolved into ‘fractivism 2.0’—a broader endeavor pushing for change across the energy and climate platforms—could give a boost of momentum to these issues at the national level.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Half of World Heritage Sites at Risk From Fossil Fuel Development and Other Industries
EcoWatch
Climate Nexus

Nearly half the world’s natural heritage sites are threatened by various forms of industrial development, according to a new report. The World Wildlife Fund says extractive industries and other large projects pose a clear risk to at least 114 of 229 global sites identified by the organization.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Carson City Bans Fracking
EcoWatch
Food & Water Watch

On Tuesday night, the Carson City Council voted unanimously to ban fracking, acidizing and other environmentally hazardous well stimulation techniques. The move comes after a five-year fight against a proposal for 200 new fracking wells. The efforts of the Carson Coalition and concerned residents, joined by Food & Water Watch, resulted in the California Resources Corporation (formerly Occidental Petroleum) withdrawing the project last year. Residents continued to fight to ensure fracking would never come to Carson, California, resulting in the ban by city council.  [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Several earthquakes recorded in Oklahoma on Thursday
Washington Post
Associated Press

LUTHER, Okla. — The U.S. Geological Survey has recorded several small to moderate earthquakes in Oklahoma, including a magnitude 4.0 quake.   [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Utica shale drilling still stalled as prices and rig counts drop
Crain's Cleveland Business
Dan Shingler

In case you were wondering, there’s still a Utica shale boom going on – and Canton is still staking its claim as its capital. “I’m very reluctant to say we are in a bust – we are in a pause,” Cleveland State University economist and shale oil and gas expert Iryna Lendel told a sold-out crowd at the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Utica Upstream conference April 6. The crowd was made up mostly of drillers, service companies and other business people who rely on the drilling and production of shale gas to make their living.  [Full Story]

Apr 7, 2016
Researchers fly over 8,000 well pads and find hundreds of methane leaks
Public Source
Elizabeth Lepro

A new study from scientists in the Environmental Defense Fund’s Oil and Gas program examined the most common sites for methane leaks at oil and gas pads nationwide. A team of researchers partnered with Gas Leaks Inc., a company that uses infrared technology to inspect well pads, to fly a helicopter over thousands of pads in seven regions in the United States.  [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
How Fracking Threatens Our Health
Huffington Post
Margie Alt

Clean water is essential to human health. That’s why we’re marking National Public Health Week in part by calling on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to revise its widely panned conclusion from last year: that fracking poses no ‘widespread, systemic’ risks to our drinking water.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
California Porter Ranch Gas Leak Killing Local Housing Market Sales
World Property Journal
Michael Gerrity

According to a new study by RealtyTrac, the recent and unprecedented gas leak in Porter Ranch California is now having a devastating effect on the local housing market. The Porter Ranch analysis shows that in the three months following the discovery of the gas leak in late October 2015, home sales in the Porter Ranch zip code (91326) plunged 44 percent while the share of all-cash sales spiked 50 percent during the same time period. Meanwhile, the median home sales price in Porter Ranch in the three months following the discovery of the gas leak dropped 1 percent. "Such a spike in the percentage of cash sales in an area in such a short period of time certainly indicates a market disruption," said Dr. Clifford A. Lipscomb, Director of Economic Research at Greenfield Advisors. "Market disruption is further signified by the number of families that requested relocation out of the Porter Ranch area as well as the number of health effects reported by area residents. Also, with further research, you might find that lenders are less willing to lend on a property located in the Porter Ranch area."   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Keystone I Leak Raises More Doubts About Pipeline Safety
Inisde Climate News
Phil McKenna

A leak and shutdown in South Dakota comes as TransCanada seeks to build another large, cross-country pipeline touting its leak detection technology.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Wind and Solar Are Crushing Fossil Fuels
Bloomberg
Tom Randall

Wind and solar have grown seemingly unstoppable. While two years of crashing prices for oil, natural gas, and coal triggered dramatic downsizing in those industries, renewables have been thriving. Clean energy investment broke new records in 2015 and is now seeing twice as much global funding as fossil fuels.  [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
US and Canada continue climate alliance with move to curb methane emissions
The Guardian
Suzanne Goldenberg

Meeting represents one of the last chances to grow on climate partnership agreed on by Justin Trudeau and Barack Obama before US president leaves office The US and Canada will take their newfound climate alliance to the next level on Thursday, advancing efforts to curb emissions of methane, a powerful warming agent produced at fracking sites and tar sands, ageing oil installations and pipelines.  [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
CLEAN POWER PLAN: Dominion defends rule's goals as 'feasible'
E & E Newswire
Rod Kuckro and Elizabeth Harbal

Energy giant Dominion Resources Inc. is making a strong business case in favor of U.S. EPA's Clean Power Plan, telling a federal appeals court that compliance with the rule to curb carbon emission from power plants is "feasible" and that "effects on power plants and customers can be successfully managed" with market-based tools. And in a rebuke to opponents of the EPA rule, led by West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, Dominion said their "overly narrow interpretation of the Clean Air Act would be more disruptive to the power sector, and result in higher compliance costs for power plant owners and electricity customers." Richmond, Va.-based Dominion is the dominant utility in the state. Even with its diverse generation fleet, Dominion produced the lion's share of its electricity -- 32 percent -- from coal-fired power plants in 2015. But in its amicus brief filed Friday with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Dominion emphasized that the EPA rule "is compatible with current trends toward additional renewable and natural gas generation in the power sector based on market condition and customer demands."  [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Ex-EPA scientist publishes Wyoming fracking study that agency abandoned Study stands by initial finding of contamination.
Ars Technica
Scott K. Johnson

In late 2011, the Environmental Protection Agency published a draft report on an investigation of groundwater contamination near Pavillion, Wyoming, where fracking had jump-started an oil and natural gas field that includes the Wind River Reservation. It's an unusual geologic setting, with little separation between the drinking water aquifer and the rocks being fracked for gas. Add poorly sealed gas wells, the draft report concluded, and you get fracking contamination that appeared to have reached the drinking water aquifer.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Public health campaigners renew call for fracking health registry
StateImpact Pa
Jon Hurdle

Pennsylvania public health campaigners have issued a new call for the establishment of a statewide registry of health complaints that could be related to oil and gas development. Such a registry would help doctors and nurses identify patterns of health complaints by people living near sites such as well pads or compressor stations, and determine any link between those complaints and local air and water conditions.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Natural Gas Production Is Slipping
Seeking Alpha


Summary Bentek Energy is reporting this morning that natural gas production has fallen to its lowest level of the year. The EIA Drilling Productivity Report is predicting natural gas production may start to fall monthly by 1/2 Bcf per day. The Baker Hughes Rig Count has fallen to 88 rigs drilling for natural gas in the lower 48 United States. The 12-month NYMEX strip indicates further declines are possible.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Natural Gas Prices Should Double
Oil Voice
Art Berman

Natural gas prices should double over the next year. Over-supply plus a warm 2015-2016 winter have resulted in low gas prices. That is about to change because supply is decreasing (Figure 1).   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Drillers Go Rigless as Gas Price Collapse Heralds Austerity Era
Bloomberg
Chrstine Buurma

Natural gas producers are finally realizing that the age-old adage is true: If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Public health campaigners renew call for fracking health registry
State Impact PA
Jon Hurdle

Pennsylvania public health campaigners have issued a new call for the establishment of a statewide registry of health complaints that could be related to oil and gas development. Such a registry would help doctors and nurses identify patterns of health complaints by people living near sites such as well pads or compressor stations, and determine any link between those complaints and local air and water conditions.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Keystone Pipeline Shut Down After Oil Spill in South Dakota
EcoWatch
Julie Dermansky

“Landowners’ worst fears came true,” Jane Kleeb, the head of Bold Nebraska, told DeSmog after news broke about the latest Keystone pipeline oil spill. “When you have a pipe running through your farm or ranch-land all you think about is: it could break today.”   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
In W. Virginia, frack wastewater may be messing with hormones
Environmental Health News
Brian Bienkowski

Waste leaching from frack disposal wells are the likely source of a spike in endocrine-disrupting compounds in downstream waterway—a troubling sign given the roughly 36,000 disposal sites across the U.S.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Westbury and Warminster anti-fracking groups step up their efforts
Wiltshire Times
Robin Murray

ANTI-fracking groups in Westbury and Warminster are stepping up their campaigning efforts in a bid to prevent fracking in the area. Last year, both towns were earmarked by a company as locations in Wiltshire in which they plan to carry out fracking, and will begin to do so if they are granted permission.  [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Alberta regulator allows fracking to resume after quake near Fox Creek
Edmonton Journal
Gordon Kent

The Alberta Energy Regulator has allowed Calgary-based Repsol Oil & Gas Canada to resume work on a well near Fox Creek almost three months after the area was shaken by a minor earthquake. A “seismic event” that registered 4.8 on the Richter scale was recorded Jan. 12 near where Repsol was doing hydraulic fracking, the regulator wrote in an April 4 letter to the company.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Environmentalist concerned about Sabal Trail pipeline in Florida
WMNF
Sean Kinane

Two of Florida’s largest energy companies want to build a pipeline for natural gas through the center of the state – but environmentalists say it could negatively impact wetlands and the state’s aquifer. The Gulf Restoration Network is one of the groups opposing what’s called the Sabal Trail pipeline. WMNF News spoke with their coastal campaign organizer, Johanna de Graffenreid on the waterfront in downtown St. Petersburg.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Carson strikes out at oil industry, adopts toughest regulations in the state
Daily Breeze
Sandy Mazza

Carson has adopted the most stringent regulations on oil and gas production in the state on top of its ban on aggressive well-stimulation practices known as fracking and acidizing. The soon-to-be new laws, which have been introduced but not yet finalized, stem from a resident protest two years ago in response to Occidental Petroleum Corp.’s now-abandoned plan to drill 200 new oil and gas wells. The city, they argued, has too many industrial operations causing environmental and health problems.   [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
High Levels of Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals Found Near Fracking Wastewater Site
EcoWatch
Lorraine Chow

A new study from the University of Missouri (MU) has reported high levels of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in the surface water near a fracking wastewater disposal facility in West Virginia, raising concerns if similar cases are occurring nationwide given the country’s 36,000 fracking disposal sites.  [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
A Fracking Well In West Virginia Is Leaking Chemicals That Can Affect Fertility
BuzzFeed News
Dan Vergano

Dangerous levels of chemicals that can harm fertility flow downstream from a West Virginia fracking wastewater disposal facility, federal and academic researchers reported on Wednesday. The finding raises questions about safety of similar deep disposal sites nationwide, several independent scientists said. The contamination near Fayetteville, West Virginia, flows from a brook called Wolf Creek a few miles upstream of a drinking water treatment facility for 11,300 people. The disposal site, which includes a deep waste well, several holding ponds, and storage tanks, sits on a hillside above the creek, and has been the site of a fight over its permit, revoked in 2014 and then renewed by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection in August.  [Full Story]

Apr 6, 2016
Keystone Pipeline Mishap Has TransCanada Scrambling Again
DeSmogBlog
Julie Dermansky

“Landowners’ worst fears came true,” Jane Kleeb, the head of Bold Nebraska, told DeSmog after news broke about the latest Keystone pipeline oil spill. “When you have a pipe running through your farm or ranch-land all you think about is: it could break today.” On Saturday afternoon that fear was realized by a Hutchinson County, South Dakota land owner. Loern Schulz found oil in surface water near the Keystone pipeline’s right-of-way and reported the spill. By Sunday, TransCanada had shut down the Keystone Pipeline, which originates in Alberta, Canada, and goes to Steele City, Nebraska. But the rest of its U.S. pipeline network is operational.   [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
Justice Department moves to block Halliburton, Baker Hughes merger
FuelFix
Robert Grattan

HOUSTON — Regulators are preparing to file a lawsuit blocking the merger between Baker Hughes and Halliburton, according to a person familiar with the matter. The antitrust lawsuit is the latest and most serious challenge to the marriage of the two oil field service companies, which was valued at $35 billion when it was announced just when prices began to fall in 2014. Since then, oil has slid lower and oilfield services companies have been among the hardest hit.  [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
Signs Are Promising That Economies Can Rise as Carbon Emissions Decline
NY Times
Coral Davenport

Throughout the 20th century, the global economy was fueled by burning coal to run factories and power plants, and burning oil to move planes, trains and automobiles. The more coal and oil countries burned — and the more planet-warming carbon dioxide they emitted — the higher the economic growth. And so it seemed logical that any policy to reduce emissions would also push countries into economic decline. Now there are signs that G.D.P. growth and carbon emissions need not rise in tandem, and that the era of decoupling could be starting. Last year, for the first time in the 40 years since both metrics have been recorded, global G.D.P. grew but global carbon emissions leveled off. Economists got excited, but they also acknowledged that it could have been an anomalous blip. But a study released by the International Energy Agency last month found that the trend continued in 2015. In another study published on Tuesday, Nathaniel Aden, a research fellow at the World Resources Institute, a Washington think tank, found that since the start of the 21st century, 21 countries, including the United States, have already fully decoupled their economic growth from carbon emissions. In those countries, while G.D.P. went up over the past 15 years, carbon pollution went down.   [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
Oil Companies Donated To Clinton Foundation While Lobbying State Department
International Business Times
DAVID SIROTA AND NED RESNIKOFF

Faced with new questions last week about her cash haul from the oil and gas industry, Hillary Clinton and her campaign fended off the queries with a flat rejoinder: There is no explicit quid pro quo between major donations and public policies pushed by Clinton. The Clinton team also noted that the millions of dollars that flowed to her campaign and a super PAC supporting her White House bid came from the industry’s individual employees and lobbyists, not from the oil companies themselves. But Clinton’s family foundation has accepted millions of dollars directly from major fossil fuel companies — including from those that lobbied her State Department just before the agency approved a controversial pipeline delivering what environmentalists call one of the world’s dirtiest sources of energy. The Clinton Foundation did not respond to International Business Times’ request for comment.  [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
Hundreds Rally Asking Gov. Cuomo to Deny the Constitution Pipeline
EcoWatch
Stefanie Spear

Nearly 400 people from across the state of New York and beyond rallied in Albany today asking Gov. Cuomo to stand up to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and use the state’s authority under the Clean Water Act to deny the 401 water quality certificate for the Constitution Pipeline.  [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
Hillary’s fracking flip-flops another obstacle in New York
New York Post
Marisa Schultz

WASHINGTON — Hillary Clinton’s past support of fracking has bubbled up as an issue in New York, which banned the underground natural-gas extraction in 2015 and where activists have pushed Clinton to abandon her previous position. As secretary of state, Clinton promoted fracking in developing countries and touted natural gas as a clean alternative to coal. “The United States will promote the use of shale gas,” Clinton said in 2010. “Now I know that in some places it’s controversial. But natural gas is the cleanest fossil fuel available.”  [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
Groups call for more transparency in sharing Utica shale benefits and risks
Midwest Energy News
Douglas J. Guth

Since 2011, shale gas drilling has been a way of life for some eastern Ohio communities, with residents acutely aware of both the benefits and drawbacks. But as production declines, are those perceptions changing?   [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
RFK Jr. among Constitution Pipeline protesters
Press Connects
Nick Muscavage

ALBANY — Robert F. Kennedy Jr. joined environmental activists Tuesday to call on the state to block construction of the Constitution Pipeline in New York. A few hundred protesters held a rally Tuesday morning on the state Capitol's east stairs before marching to the state Department of Environmental Conservation. They urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the agency to deny the water-quality certificate the pipeline needs to proceed with construction in the state.  [Full Story]

Apr 5, 2016
Gov. Andrew Cuomo urged to block Constitution gas pipeline project
Times Union
Brian Nearing

lbany Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and other opponents of the Constitution natural gas pipeline gathered outside the Capitol Tuesday to urge Gov. Andrew Cuomo to deliver a death blow to the project by denying it state water protection permits. Kennedy, president of the Waterkeeper Alliance, fired up a crowd of about 400 people when he said the project, which would bring hydrofracked natural gas from Pennsylvania into central New York, would "make a few billionaires richer, while our children would pay for their joyride" through environmental damage and ongoing man-made climate change. And Kennedy also took aim at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which has already approved the project, as have Pennsylvania officials. But the project cannot begin work in New York until the state Department of Environmental Conservation issues so-called 401 water quality permits.  [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Fracking site shut down in Taranaki
Scoop Politics
Press Release

Todd Energy have shut down one of their large multi-welled fracking sites in Taranaki. After nearly two years of construction, drilling, fracking and flaring at the Mangahewa-E site in Taranaki, they have closed it down and walked away.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Planned gas pipeline alongside Indian Point nuclear plant stirs meltdown fears
The Guardian
Sam Thielman

Across a narrow swath cut by bulldozers and chainsaws through the woods of Westchester County, New York, triangular yellow flags are clotheslined between pairs of trees. The flags trace the eventual path of the gas pipeline that the energy giant Spectra is building through the area, escorted at times by police and harried by local residents worried by its proximity to a decaying nuclear power plant. If that pipeline leaks or breaks, say experts, its contents could detonate and destroy the switchyard that sits 400ft from the gas line. Entergy, which runs the Indian Point power station, said the plant could be quickly shut down in such an event. Nuclear engineer Paul Blanch is not so sure. Blanch, who has previously consulted for Entergy and now assists an organization calling for the pipeline to be stopped, said that assertion is a best-case scenario. In the worst case, he said, the reactors could melt down. And he believes Entergy and Spectra have not fully considered that worst-case scenario.  [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
When the Boom Goes Bust: Natural Gas Drilling in Pennsylvania
WV Public Broadcasting
Beth Vorhees

southern West Virginia businessman who moved to Pennsylvania to take advantage of the natural gas drilling boom is closing his clothing store because the boom is now a bust.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Fracking Can Contaminate Drinking Water It took nearly a decade, but former EPA scientist Dominic DiGiulio has proved that fracking has polluted groundwater in Wyoming
Scientific American
Gayathri Vaidyanathan

Former EPA scientist Dominic DiGiulio never gave up. Eight years ago, people in Pavillion, Wyo., living in the middle of a natural gas basin, complained of a bad taste and smell in their drinking water. U.S. EPA launched an inquiry, helmed by DiGiulio, and preliminary testing suggested that the groundwater contained toxic chemicals.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Experts Sound ‘Wake Up Call’ on Fracking
Care2
Llowell Williams

In recent weeks two groups of experts have come forward to confirm some of the worst fears critics have held regarding fracking. One is a new study from researchers at Stanford University that provides some of the most conclusive evidence yet that fracking methods have a severe and wide-reaching impact on water systems. Another comes in the form of a U.S. Geological Survey report that says people living in Oklahoma, a hot spot for rapidly expanding fracking operations, are at greater risk from earthquakes than Californians.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Bill to give local governments more control over fracking dies in Colorado House Bill was amended to cover only traffic, noise, lighting
Denver Post
Joey Bunch

A Democratic bill to give local governments more authority over fracking failed to make it out of the Democrat-controlled state House of Representatives Monday.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Fracking collection tells seismic story about people and land
MinnPost
Amy Goetzman

Taylor Brorby comes from a place a lot of people think was full of nothing, until it became full of money, trucks and sex workers, and suddenly became interesting. But the North Dakota native knows that the northern prairie has always been quietly spectacular. He sees a place on the edge of the Rocky Mountains that is thick with rowdy legends and history, and is home to a complex interplay of rare species. He wants people to know about these things because they are being destroyed, and they can’t be replicated anywhere else.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Alameda County Residents to Urge Planning Commission to Support Fracking Ban Ordinance Recent Livermore Oil Field Spill Highlights Risks to County Water Supplies
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

HAYWARD, Calif.— Members of Alameda County Against Fracking, Food & Water Watch and the Center for Biological Diversity will attend a county planning commission meeting tonight to urge commissioners to support an ordinance that would ban fracking and other extreme oil and gas extraction techniques.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
‘Fractivists’ Increase Pressure on Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders in New York
The New York Times
TRIP GABRIEL and CORAL DAVENPORT

A nasty row that erupted between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders over oil and gas industry donors last week is catapulting the issue of climate change into the race for the Democratic presidential nomination as it moves to New York, where an army of activists upstate is driven by opposition to drilling. Mrs. Clinton has moved steadily left on the issue, under pressure from Mr. Sanders and his progressive allies, but she continues to come under assault, posing new challenges for her as the race moves to more liberal Northeastern states. Last week, her mask of composure slipped when she angrily replied to a Greenpeace activist in Purchase, N.Y., “I am so sick of the Sanders campaign lying about me.”   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Did Fracking Lead to Water Contamination in Wyoming?
HPPR
Jonathan Baker

Oklahoma isn’t the only state where the controversial process known as “fracking” has resulted in fights between state and federal officials, and the oil and gas industry.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Fracking threatens Indigenous culture Documentary premiere and discussion highlights structural injustice
McGill Daily
Grace Macewan

On March 21, Cinema Politica Concordia, a group whose mission is “to promote, disseminate, exhibit, and promote the discussion of political cinema by independent artists,” premiered a documentary called Fractured Land. The film follows the path of Caleb Behn, a young Indigenous lawyer, as he fights for the land rights of his people in Northern British Columbia against the rapid expansion of liquid natural gas (LNG) extraction through fracking.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
DIGGING DEEPER INTO THE OHIO VALLEY SHALE: EPA Is Moving on Methane, Fracking Opposition Mounts Feds say gas is harmful to environment
The Intelligencer
Casey Junkins

ST. CLAIRSVILLE - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency believes methane - the main component of natural gas - can be 25 times more harmful to the environment than carbon dioxide when it leaks into the atmosphere, while a new Gallup poll shows more than half of Americans now oppose fracking.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Fracking threatens Indigenous culture Documentary premiere and discussion highlights structural injustice
McGill Daily
Grace Macewan

On March 21, Cinema Politica Concordia, a group whose mission is “to promote, disseminate, exhibit, and promote the discussion of political cinema by independent artists,” premiered a documentary called Fractured Land. The film follows the path of Caleb Behn, a young Indigenous lawyer, as he fights for the land rights of his people in Northern British Columbia against the rapid expansion of liquid natural gas (LNG) extraction through fracking.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
AIM Pipeline protestors rally in Peekskill
MidHudson News


PEEKSKILL – Opponents of gas fracking infrastructure, specifically the AIM Pipeline, from the Hudson Valley and across the state, came together, Sunday afternoon at the Riverfront Green in Peekskill, to protest the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and pressurized gas pipelines transporting fracked gas underground throughout the state.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Oil and Gas Companies Stiff 29,000 Workers Out of $40 Million America's fracking boom promised big paychecks, but thousands of workers were exploited, the Labor Department says.
U.S. News
Alan Neuhauser

More than 29,000 oil and gas employees have been stiffed over $40 million in back wages, according to findings from more than 1,100 investigations launched since 2012 by the Labor Department.   [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
A pipeline's being expanded 400ft from my home – wouldn't you be worried?
The Guardian
Courtney M Williams

he Keystone XL pipeline was vetoed by President Obama last year as being antithetical to the nation’s climate goals. Yet fights against pipelines continue to rage across the country – including 400 feet from my home in New York state, where a proposed pipeline next to the troubled Indian Point nuclear plant has spurred fears of a Fukushima-like scenario, with New York City lying squarely in an evacuation zone. Spectra Energy, a Texas-based gas company, owns a 9,000-plus-mile pipeline network that stretches from Texas across the midwest and through the north-east, all the way to Canada and the coast. The company is in the process of expanding the north-east section from a 26in pipeline to a 42in high-pressure pipeline in a project called the Algonquin Incremental Market (Aim) Expansion.  [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Did $200,000 Bail Keep Pipeline Activist Out of Sunoco’s Way?
DC Media Group
Anne Meador

The Sheriff, District Attorney and a judge in Huntingdon County, PA may have stretched the law and infringed on individual civil rights in assisting a gas transmission company to get a wildlife sanctuary cleared for pipeline construction. Sunoco Logistics Partners is in the midst of eminent domain proceedings in Central Pennsylvania to construct the Mariner East 2 pipeline. A court order favorable to the company, punitive bail set for activists resisting the clear-cut for the pipeline, plus allegations of endangerment and arbitrary arrests–one allegedly ordered by the District Attorney–point to local courts and law enforcement looking out for Sunoco’s interests.  [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
SCIENCE: Meet the man who showed fracking contaminates water
E & E Newswire
Gayathri Vaidyanathan

Former EPA scientist Dominic DiGiulio never gave up. Eight years ago, people in Pavillion, Wyo., living in the middle of a natural gas basin, complained of a bad taste and smell in their drinking water. U.S. EPA launched an inquiry, helmed by DiGiulio, and preliminary testing suggested that the groundwater contained toxic chemicals. Then, in 2013, the agency suddenly transferred the investigation to state regulators without publishing a final report. Now, DiGiulio has done it for them.  [Full Story]

Apr 4, 2016
Global Warming Linked to Public Health Risks, White House Says
The New York Times
CORAL DAVENPORT

WASHINGTON — Global warming could lead to an increase in allergies and asthma, deaths by extreme heat and the proliferation of insect-borne diseases, such as West Nile virus, according to a scientific report released Monday by the White House. The conclusions of the report on the health effects of climate change in the United States are not new. But Obama administration health officials, including Dr. Vivek H. Murthy, the surgeon general, said the study, which was reviewed by the National Academies of Science, offered the strongest evidence to date that links climate change to health risks. A number of scientific reports have suggested that a warming planet may exacerbate certain health problems. Even so, scientists have cautioned that no connections had been proved, given the multitude of variables that influence health.  [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
Solar farm developers target New York with lease offers
Times-Post
Mary Esch

ALBANY, New York — Less than a year after New York banned fracking, dashing the hopes of farmers who had hoped to reap royalties from natural gas leases, the commercial solar industry is courting landowners for energy production.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
Maryland International Film Festival-Hagerstown logs 3,000 ‘segment visits’
Herald Mail Media
Dave McMillion

Among the films shown Sunday afternoon during the final day of the Maryland International Film Festival-Hagerstown was a documentary about fracking for natural gas in Western Maryland.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
EPA aims to cut methane emissions through program Poll shows opposition to fracking grows
Times Leader
Casey Junkins

ST. CLAIRSVILLE - The Obama administration believes methane - the main component of natural gas - can be 25 times more harmful to the environment than carbon dioxide when it leaks into the atmosphere, while a new Gallup poll shows more than half of Americans now oppose fracking.  [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
COMMENTARY: LNG is a doomed industry
The Monitor
STEFANIE HERWEK

Skim the business headlines about U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports, and you’ll see the words “perfect storm” and “bloodbath.” You’ll read about how proposed LNG export terminals are “dying on the vine” and find a list of cancelled and postponed LNG projects all around the world. It’s a sharp contrast to the rosy economic picture that the LNG industry is painting for the residents of the Rio Grande Valley, where they want to develop an LNG export terminal at the Port of Brownsville.  [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
WA Conservation Council campaigns for fracking to become election issue
ABC
David Weber

The WA Conservation Council has launched a new anti-fracking campaign to highlight the issue in the lead up to next year's election, but its comments have angered the industry.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
Fracking set to be WA election issue
Yahoo News


The Conservation Council of Western Australia has launched a new anti-fracking campaign for next year's state election, but the premier has dismissed its concerns.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
Brasch book eyes effect of fracking in America
Allied News


You can live 100 miles away from the nearest gas or oil pump and you will be affected, says Dr. Walter Brasch, author of “Fracking America: Sacrificing Health and the Environment for Short-Term Economic Benefit.”   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
LNG exports set sail But environmental complaints and falling natural prices present problems
San Diego Union-Tribune
Rob Niklewski

Perhaps no industry changes as quickly as the energy business, where technology, economics and even geopolitics can upend markets that have been in place for decades. Look no further than the emerging liquefied natural gas (LNG) export market.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
TICKING TIME BOMB Ticking time bomb: Despite past mishaps, Brockway may see another well on its watershed
The Courier Express
Katie Weidenboerner

BROCKWAY — With a population of about 2,000, Brockway Borough wasn’t often mentioned in statewide or national dialogue – that is, until the drillers came. As companies began to target much of Pennsylvania with possible Marcellus Shale gas plays, the small community’s watershed became an attractive destination for several developers, including Colorado-based Flatirons Development LLC.  [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
Fracking: No WAYne! Anti-frackers take their message right to the feds
Athens News
David DeWitt

Local anti-fracking activists are renting space on a billboard across from the Wayne National Forest headquarters on U.S. Rt. 33 southeast of Nelsonville encouraging federal officials not to open public lands to fracking and other deep-shale oil and gas activities.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
Opposition leader Michael Gunner not backing down on fracking moratorium policy
NT News


TERRITORY Opposition Leader Michael Gunner has stuck by his moratorium on fracking. Deputy Chief Minister Peter Styles yesterday said Mr Gunner (pictured) should “abandon his reckless policy position” to provide bipartisan support to the onshore gas industry, in the wake of Jemena announcing it would reduce the planned Tennant Creek to Mt Isa gas pipeline from 14 to 12 inches.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
New Pilgrim Oil Pipeline Proposed for New York and New Jersey Raises Many Questions
DeSmogBlog
JUSTIN MIKULKA

It isn’t hard to find news these days about how the crash in oil prices is impacting investment in new oil infrastructure and development. Headlines like “Big oil to cut investment again in 2016” and “Big Banks Brace for Oil Loans to Implode” appear regularly. So why is a group fronted by two former Koch Industries executives moving forward with plans to build a new oil pipeline from Albany, NY to Linden, NJ? That is a good question. And the lack of answers as the permitting process moves forward is troubling.   [Full Story]

Apr 3, 2016
Editorial Ignoring its promises, SoCal Gas intends to offset Porter Ranch leak on its own terms
Los Angeles Times
Editorial

Even before Southern California Gas Co. plugged the damaged storage well blamed for the worst methane leak in U.S. history, its executives promised to fully offset the emissions released during the break. It was a big commitment that the utility's leaders said proved the company was a good neighbor and responsible corporate citizen. Gov. Jerry Brown attempted to hold SoCal Gas to its word with an emergency proclamation in January. He directed regulators to develop a program, to be funded by the utility, that would cut greenhouse gas emissions in the state. Now that the California Air Resources Board has prepared that program, however, the utility has balked.  [Full Story]

Apr 2, 2016
Land Owners Block Pipeline Condemnation
NO FRACKING WAY
Chip Northrup

Privately owned pipelines are not public utilities or common carriers. As such, they have no legal right to eminent domain – the power to condemn land for a right of way. That’s what the courts have held in Texas, Nebraska and Georgia.  [Full Story]

Apr 2, 2016
U of A project tackles hydraulic fracturing practices
iNews880
Tyler Loutan

A research program at the University of Alberta will try to find the most environmentally friendly and efficient procedure for hydraulic fracturing.   [Full Story]

Apr 2, 2016
Groundbreaking fracking effort, plus first new oil production in years, on tap in Cook Inlet
Alaska Dispatch News
Alex DeMarban

BlueCrest Energy expects to begin producing oil from Cook Inlet in the coming weeks, marking the first time in more than a decade that oil has flowed from a new field in the basin.   [Full Story]

Apr 2, 2016
Poll: Republicans Boost Opposition To Fracking
Townhall
Matt Vespa

Fracking and natural gas exploration has employed Americans, kept oil prices low, and has left us with a vast reserve of energy that could help in our country’s push towards energy independence. Yet, disapproval of the process of hydraulic fracturing in releasing that natural gas has spiked over environmental concerns and the creation of earthquakes. According to Gallup, the increased numbers of Republicans disapproving of the process has help dampen support:   [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
New Stanford Study Links Fracking to Drinking Water Contamination in Pavillion, WY (Again)
Enviro News


Pavillion, Wyoming — A new study published on March 29, 2016, by authors from Stanford University, has linked the practice of hydraulic fracturing, a.k.a. “fracking,” to pollution of underground sources of drinking water (USDW) in Pavillion, Wyoming — a connection those same researchers say is solid. - http://environews.tv/040116-new-stanford-study-links-fracking-to-drinking-water-contamination-in-pavilion-wyoming/  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
We’ve Had Enough With Failed Trade Policies
Huffington Post
Mark Ruffalo

Many pundits were caught off-guard by the transpartisan fury over America’s trade policy rocking the presidential primary season. But it’s no surprise to me. I grew up in a working class family in Kenosha, Wisconsin. So I know why Americans have had enough of shiny promises, job-killing trade deals, and Wall Street bailouts that propel ordinary people into an economic nose dive. Hard working Americans of all political stripes recognize when the rules have been rigged against them, because they live day-to-day with the results. No doubt revolutionary change is an appealing alternative. Since the North American Free Trade (NAFTA) and World Trade Organization agreements in the mid-1990s, America has lost more than five million manufacturing jobs net. Millions of service sector jobs also have been offshored.  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders Spar Over Fossil Fuel Donations
The New York Times
Yamiche Alcindor

A day after Hillary Clinton said she was “sick of the Sanders campaign lying” about her taking money from the fossil fuel industry, Senator Bernie Sanders and his campaign manager are pushing back against the accusation. Mr. Sanders told ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Friday that Mrs. Clinton has taken large amounts of money from the fossil fuel industry, repeating an attack that he regularly makes at campaign events. Mr. Sanders’s campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, also issued a statement doubling down on the criticism. However, Mrs. Clinton and her campaign insist that while she has received donations from individuals who work in the oil and gas industry, she has not taken them from the fossil fuel industry.  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
Property Rights Outcry Stops Billion-Dollar Pipeline Project in Georgia Construction is suspended after landowners protest seizure of property, a judge weighs in, and the state legislature passes legislation to block it.
Inside Climate News
Phil McKenna

Kinder Morgan, the largest energy infrastructure company in North America, announced this week that it has suspended construction of a $1 billion pipeline project that would pump gasoline and diesel fuel across the Southeastern United States. The decision is being hailed as a victory by an unlikely coalition of Republican legislators, private property owners and environmental organizations.   [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
Stanford Scientists Find Fracking Linked to Groundwater Contamination in Pavillion, Wyoming
EcoWatch
Andy Rowell

As the fracking industry tries to expand internationally, being promoted as a so-called clean bridge fuel, it is increasingly clear the industry has not one, but two, Achilles heels. The first is the release of the potent greenhouse gas, methane. The second is water pollution and the threat the controversial technique poses to drinking water.  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
Property Rights Outcry Stops Billion-Dollar Pipeline Project in Georgia
Inside Climate Newss
Phil McKenna

Kinder Morgan, the largest energy infrastructure company in North America, announced this week that it has suspended construction of a $1 billion pipeline project that would pump gasoline and diesel fuel across the Southeastern United States. The decision is being hailed as a victory by an unlikely coalition of Republican legislators, private property owners and environmental organizations. The announcement came the same day Georgia state lawmakers sent a bill to the state's governor that would place a moratorium on the 360-mile pipeline's construction until 2017, after they voted overwhelmingly in support of the legislation.  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
Millennium holds outreach meeting; protesters turn out in force
River Reporter
Fritz Mayer

As part of the permitting process to construct a compressor station near Eldred, Millennium Pipeline Company, LLC held a community outreach meeting at the Sullivan in Rock Hill on March 31. Before the meeting officially started, many protesters gathered across the street from the motel to speak out against the project. Members of Sullivan Area Citizens for Responsible Energy Development (SACRED), Sullivan County Residents Against Millenium (SCRAM), Delaware Riverkeeper Network (DRN) and various families and supporters held up signs and handed out literature asking various questions they believe Millennium has not answered. Maya van Rossum, who as Delaware Riverkeeper leads the DRN, accused Millennium of disseminating false information about the compressor station, and the larger Eastern System Upgrade Project, which will include the Eldred compressor in Town of Highland, a second compressor at Hancock and a new 7.8 mile section of pipeline loop in Orange County.  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
Hillary flips over fracking, oil & gas money question
News Record


At a rally in New York, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton lost her patience with a Greenpeace activist who thanked her for her commitment to climate change then asked her whether she’ll reject fossil fuel money moving forward. Pointing her finger at activist Eva Resnick-Day, Clinton claimed she only takes money from people who work for fossil fuel companies and called the accusations lies.  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
Gibson: Federal natural gas air pollution safety standards may be obsolete
Times Union
Brian Nearing

Nassau U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, eyeing a run for governor, is raising alarm bells with federal energy officials over potential public health risks from natural gas pipeline compressor stations. In a letter last month to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the congressman asked for a review of decades-old health standards for the stations, which can release high levels of potential carcinogenic gas like benzene. The Kinderhook Republican came out late last year against the proposed Northeast Energy Direct (NED) pipeline, which wants to build a compressor station in southern Rensselaer County that has drawn vocal local opposition.  [Full Story]

Apr 1, 2016
FERC postpones decisions on two gas pipeline projects
Citizens Voice
ELIZABETH SKRAPITS

Two natural gas pipeline companies will have to wait longer than they wanted for potential approval by the federal agency that authorizes and regulates pipeline projects. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission postponed a decision on the PennEast pipeline to January 2017, seven months later than the company requested. FERC’s decision on another proposed project, Williams Companies’ Transcontinental Pipeline Co., LLC’s $2.59 billion Atlantic Sunrise expansion of the Transco interstate pipeline, is also delayed, by 10 months.  [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
The Invisible Catastrophe
NY Times
Nathaniel Rich

Over the course of four months, 97,100 metric tons of methane quietly leaked out of a single well into California’s sky. Scientists and residents are still trying to figure out just how much damage was done.  [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Sunoco Gets Assist from Sheriff, Judge in Clear-Cut for Pipeline
DC Media Group
Anne Meador

Born in Budapest, 85-year-old Steven Gerhart fled to the United States in 1957 after surviving Europe’s most brutal regimes. His adopted country was undoubtedly a refuge from injustices and cruelties suffered under the Nazi occupation of Hungary, the Communist takeover and the Soviet crackdown on rebellion. In turn, Gerhart with his wife Ellen created a sanctuary for wildlife with the purchase of land in Pennsylvania in 1982. Now their property—a heavily forested hillside of century-old trees—is in the way of a gas company’s profitable enterprise. Without negotiating a settlement, Sunoco Logistics Partners this week clear-cut the land on three acres of the Gerhart property for the Mariner East 2 pipeline.  [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Tomgram: Cantarow and Levy, Could Nuclear Disaster Come to America?
Tom Dispatch
Ellen Cantarow and Alison Rose Levy

On March 11, 2011, following a massive earthquake and a devastating tsunami, the cores of three of the reactors at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant melted down with horrific results. Radioactive cesium, with a half-life of 30 years, contaminated almost 12,000 square miles of the country, an area about the size of the state of Connecticut. The government considered 12.5 square miles around the plant so poisoned that its population was evacuated and it was declared a permanent “exclusion” zone. (At Chernobyl in Ukraine, three decades after the other great nuclear disaster of our era, a 1,000 square mile exclusion zone is still in place.) One hundred and twenty thousand evacuees, some from areas outside the exclusion zone, have still not gone home and some undoubtedly never will, despite a vast decontamination program run by the government. (Sixteen to twenty-two million bags of contaminated soil and debris will someday be buried in a vast landfill near the plant, but it may take decades to get them there and that’s only the beginning of the problems to come.) And let’s not forget that, according to a report from the French Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety, the ocean waters around Fukushima received "the largest single contribution of radionuclides to the marine environment ever observed."  [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Kinder Morgan halts work on $1B Georgia pipeline project
Seeking Alpha


Kinder Morgan (NYSE:KMI) says it is halting work on the $1B Palmetto Pipeline in Georgia, citing the state legislature's passage of a one-year moratorium on the use of eminent domain in pipeline construction.The moratorium was in response to stiff opposition from environmental groups and landowners whose property KMI hoped to build upon using eminent domain laws; it provides time for a study commission of elected officials and industry experts to review the eminent domain issue and make recommendations.The proposed pipeline would have carried gasoline, diesel and ethanol across 360 miles from South Carolina through Georgia and into Florida.  [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Israel’s giant gas field is on hold again, just as the world tries to move away from coal
Hellenic Shipping News


For five years, a giant natural gas field called Leviathan has been touted as a way for Israel to join the leagues of petro-exporters, obtaining energy security and a much-needed flow of dollars. But a court decision has again postponed drilling, probably holding back big Israeli natural gas exports into the 2020s.   [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
United States Geological Survey confirms it: Fracking causes earthquakes
Extreme Tech
Jessica Hall

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) are not known for being controversial folks. They’re a collaborative, interdisciplinary organization that studies “the health of our ecosystems and environment, [and] the natural resources we rely on.” They’ve been studying the effects of fracking on the underground since we started doing it, and they conduct their studies with an eye to increasing the American GDP. Entities all around the world, from cities to whole countries, have issued moratoria on fracking pending conclusive evidence of its risks. Well, some of that evidence (full text, PDF) is in: fracking causes earthquakes.  [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Colorado GOP Senate candidates attack EPA, defend fracking at forum Peg Littleton says God causes earthquakes, not fracking
Denver Post
John Frank

The Republican candidates for U.S. Senate took aim at the EPA and touted the benefits of fracking at a campaign forum Wednesday evening in Weld County, a drilling epicenter in Colorado. Peg Littleton said she supports eliminating the federal Environmental Protection Agency, while Tim Neville said he would defund the EPA regulators and Robert Blaha said he wanted to reduce its reach. Jerry Natividad attacked the agency for "killing hundreds of jobs" but didn't explicitly endorse its elimination.  [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Oil and gas: Eagle Ford fracking, as seen from space
CNBC
Robert Ferris

The so-called "shale revolution" has changed the landscape of Texas, and that's plain to see from the sky above.   [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Majority of Americans oppose fracking – poll
RT


More than half of Americans are opposed to fracking in pursuit of oil and gas, according to a new Gallup poll. The results come amid mounting concerns about the links between fracking and earthquakes and groundwater pollution.   [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Fracking in Wyoming Forces Residents to Find Water Elsewhere
Sputnik News


WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The US state of Wyoming has provided cisterns for residents of an area where hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in oil and gas wells has poisoned well water, Powder River Basin Resource Council organizer Shannon Anderson told Sputnik on Thursday.   [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Federal offshore fracking plan threatens California coast: Guest commentary
Los Angeles Daily News
Commentary: Kristen Monsell

Should toxic fracking chemicals be dumped into the wildlife-rich waters off the California coast? Most Californians would say no — and state law rightly forbids the discharge of waste from offshore oil drilling near our shores. Yet the Obama administration is preparing to give oil companies a green light to pollute our ocean with these dangerous substances.   [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Science Panel Questions EPA Report on Fracking
k2 Radio
Roger Gray

Last year the EPA published a study that essentially cleared the oil and gas industry, and particularly the practice of “hydraulic fracturing” or “fracking,” of any responsibility for the contamination of underground water systems. But the findings used language that was hardly definitive.   [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Scottish Green Party Pledges to Introduce Bill to Ban Fracking
Sputnik News


EDINBURGH (Sputnik) – The Scottish Government controlled by the Scottish National Party (SNP) currently has a moratorium in place, halting the controversial process until more is learned about its risks and benefits. However, environmental activists, including members of the Green Party have been accusing the SNP of skirting around the issue.   [Full Story]

Mar 31, 2016
Political dissent on the EPA fracking study review panel
LittleSis


First, EPA's top-line spin was a gift to the fracking industry and Wall Street In June 2015 the EPA issued a much anticipated draft study on fracking's impacts to drinking water. In its top-line, the agency dismissed the impacts as not "widespread, systemic." The EPA did this without a clear basis of support, in terms of what "widespread" or "systemic" impacts would actually look like, or what fracking’s ongoing impacts to drinking water resources actually are. The EPA crossed a line, and injected politics into the report. Ultimately, this fractured the independent panel reviewing the study. It led four industry representatives on the panel to break with the rest of the panel and embrace the agency's controversial top-line dismissing the impacts.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Texas tremors Fracking-induced earthquakes in Texas are not exactly the shake of success.
Houston Chronicle


It used to be that Texans and other Americans east of, say, the Sierra Nevada sneered at residents of the Golden State for blithely going about their business while living along fault lines likely someday to crumble like fresh-baked cornbread into the cold waters of the Pacific. Now, Texans and their neighbors don't have to head West for potential temblor thrills. We're creating our own.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
New school next to proposed drilling site approved in Erie
Coloradoan
Associated Press

BOULDER — A new public school is being considered next to a site that has been approved for oil and gas drilling. The Boulder Valley school board has cleared the way for construction to start next month on a new school for K-8 classrooms in Erie  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Public health professionals seek more protections from fracking
Observer-Reporter
Michael Bradwell

Health care professionals want to create a statewide registry to record risks they said are associated with hydraulic fracturing. The registry would document symptoms from those living near natural gas well pads and compressor stations.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Fracking protections a key consideration in ordinance revision
Smoky Mountain News
Holly Kays

When the state opened the doors for hydraulic fracturing — called “fracking” — in 2014, a flood of public opinion from the mountains told Raleigh that drilling would not be welcome in the western part of the state.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Fracking support fractures
Castanet


Fewer British Columbians are supportive of the provincial government’s push for liquefied natural gas, a new Insights West poll has found.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Stanford Researchers: Fracking & Its Impact On Drinking Water Sources
Clean Technica
Glenn Meyers

Many have long speculated about fracking and its possible negative impact on drinking water. Recent research released today from Stanford scientists finds for the first time that fracking operations near Pavillion, Wyoming have had a clear impact on underground sources of drinking water.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
EARTHQUAKES: Quakes from fracking on the rise in Canada
EE News
Mike Soraghan

While man-made earthquakes in the central United States have been linked to disposal of drilling wastewater, a new paper links a growing pattern of quakes in western Canada to the specific practice of hydraulic fracturing.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Atlantic drilling off table but survey permits pending
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Bruce Smith

CHARLESTON, S.C. — While drilling for oil and natural gas in the Atlantic is off the table for now, permits are still pending that could allow seismic surveys to map just how much might be out there.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
States' top lawyers taking aim at fossil fuel climate change claims Gore, Schneiderman join coalition seeking more accountability
Albany Times Union
Brian Nearing

Likening ongoing climate change with rising seas, melting ice caps, droughts and killer storms to "a nature walk through the Book of Revelation," former Vice President Al Gore stood Tuesday with state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to unveil a sweeping national legal coalition formed to hold the fossil fuel industry responsible for misleading the public and investors.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Fracking heats up global warming
Times Union
Jay Jochnowitz

Our growing reliance on fracked natural gas may be doing more to accelerate climate change than carbon emissions from coal-powered plants, given that methane – the main component of natural gas – is “much more efficient at trapping heat than carbon dioxide” and is bleeding into the earth’s atmosphere from leaks at fracking sites, writes Bill McKibben in The Nation. By becoming “the planet’s salesman for natural gas,” we are undercutting the market for clean energy alternatives and misrepresenting our progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, he writes.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Fracking Contaminates Groundwater: Stanford Study
The Tyee
Andrew Nikiforuk

Another scientific study has confirmed that fracking, the controversial technology that blasts apart low-grade rocks containing molecules of hydrocarbons, can contaminate groundwater. "We have, for the first time, demonstrated impact to Underground Sources of Drinking Water (USDW) as a result of hydraulic fracturing," says the study published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology. Researchers from Stanford University published their findings after combing through publicly available data on the drilling, fracking and cementing of scores of tight gas wells in Pavillion, Wyoming.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Duke hosts climate roundtable on fracking
daily tarheel
Sam Killenberg

Environmental experts universally condemned Duke Energy’s movement towards the use of fracking in a climate roundtable Tuesday. The event was co-sponsored by the Duke University Environmental Law and Policy Clinic and climate advocacy groups NC WARN and the Climate Times. Robert Howarth, a Cornell University professor of ecology and an expert on methane emissions from fracking, warned that fracking emissions are twice as harmful as emissions from coal. “We need to stop this idea of natural gas as a bridge fuel; it’s a false promise, and we need to move to renewable energy as quickly as we can,” Howarth said. “I’m very pleased to deliver that message in North Carolina because Duke Energy really needs to get that message, and your community needs to help them see that.” David Hughes works for the Geological Survey of Canada and is president of Global Sustainability Research, a sustainable energy consultancy. He believes the sustainability of hydraulic fracturing has been misrepresented by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
EPA Aims to Cut Methane Leaks From Natural Gas Companies
ABC news via AP
MICHAEL BIESECKER, ASSOCIATED PRESS

The Obama administration on Wednesday announced a new partnership with 41 energy companies that have agreed to voluntarily reduce methane emissions from natural gas operations to help combat climate change. The Environmental Protection Agency unveiled the Natural Gas STAR Methane Challenge Program at this week's Global Methane Forum held in Washington. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, capable of trapping 25 times more heat in the atmosphere than an equivalent amount of carbon dioxide. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said the voluntary program is meant to protect public health and combat climate change while providing a platform for companies to report actions taken to reduce methane emissions.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
NASA’S METHANE SENSING DRONE WAS SUCCESSFULLY TESTED
The Monitor Daily
Joe Hennessey

Generally, we expect NASA to design technology related to space travel. And that is exactly what they do. But occasionally, because of the intense work and testing that goes into designing a NASA piece of technology, it tends to be often implemented in other technological fields. Otherwise, a lot of good, efficient work would go to waste. So, other important pieces of technology are often developed using the same principles, if not some of the same hardware that NASA themselves use. And the Agency, in desperate need of funding, is often involved in the production of those as well. Developed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, NASA’s methane sensing drone was successfully tested. Called the sUAS, or the Vertical Take-off and Landing small unmanned aerial system, the drone carrying the methane sensor was especially picked for the increased maneuverability and access offered to the sensor.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
NY finds 5 critical defects in latest rail inspections
Times Herald Record
AP

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Transportation officials say teams have examined another 341 oil tank cars, 132 miles of track and 69 switches, finding five critical defects needing an immediate fix and 42 others. In the most recent effort to reduce potential dangers from crude oil transports across New York, federal and state inspectors report examining tankers at the CSX Corp.'s Frontier Rail Yard in Buffalo and at Canadian Pacific's Kenwood Yard in Albany. They also examined CSX mainline track between Batavia and Depew, between Ripley and Blasdell, in Syracuse, between Fonda and Rotterdam and in Orangeburg. Two critical defects were found along the mile of Syracuse track and three on the 28 miles of track between Fonda and Rotterdam.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Fracking Found Guilty of Contaminating Water Supply !
NO FRACKING WAY
Chip Northrup

Some background – these studies confirm that my pal John Fenton’s water was contaminated by fracking. I met John at a conference in Colorado. We talked about his situation and it was apparent that his deep water well had been directly contaminated by rather shallow fracking operations – because there was not enough distance between the water strata and the frack target. Subsequent studies by the DOE confirmed that a frack can travel up to 2,000 feet vertically – far less than the separation between Fenton’s water well and the frack zone.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Pipeline protestor takes to the trees to stop construction
StateImpact PA
REID FRAZIER, THE ALLEGHENY FRONT

As the chain saws revved nearby, Elise Gerhart was literally up a tree Tuesday protesting a pipeline slated to course through her family’s wooded property. Gerhart, 29, of Huntingdon, and about 20 protesters coalesced around the Gerhart property as a work crew—chaperoned by local sheriff’s officers—took down trees along the property. Two protesters were arrested as the work crews cleared land for Sunoco Logistics’ Mariner East 2 pipeline, which will carry natural gas liquids from Ohio, West Virginia and western Pennsylvania to the Philadelphia area. The company was granted a right-of-way on the Gerhart’s land by a judge through eminent domain in January. Though they are appealing that decision, the Gerharts were ordered by Huntingdon County Common Pleas Court Judge George Zanik Monday to stay clear of the chain saw crews.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
New Study Confirms Fracking Contamination That The EPA Walked Back On In 2011
Think Progress
Natasha Geiling

A new study out of Stanford University offers residents of Pavillion, Wyoming a little more clarity on an issue that has been plaguing them for nearly a decade: is hydraulic fracturing to blame for years of contamination in their drinking water? The town initially made headlines in 2008, when residents began complaining of strange odors and tastes in their drinking water. In 2011 the EPA got involved, first issuing a draft report that connected fracking to the contamination. The agency later walked back on the report, however, and refused to issue a finalized version and instead handing the matter over to state officials. Years later, the state has yet to move forward with the report.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
More Than Half of Americans Oppose Fracking: Gallup
24/7 Wall St
Paul Ausick

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has been the single biggest driver of increased U.S. crude oil and natural gas production in the past several years. But not only have horizontal drilling and fracking led to increased production, Americans’ opinion of fracking has taken a decided negative turn. In the latest poll by Gallup, 51% of Americans now oppose fracking as a means of increasing U.S. production of oil and natural gas. A year ago opposition totaled 40%. Gallup included the fracking question in its 2016 environment survey.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
States expand probes into whether Exxon Mobil hid climate change risks
LA Times
Michael Phillis

Attorneys general from Massachusetts and the Virgin Islands announced Tuesday that they will follow the lead of California Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris and New York Atty. Gen. Eric Schneiderman and launch their own independent investigations into whether Exxon Mobil Corp. misled investors and the public about climate change risks. Massachusetts Atty. Gen. Maura Healey said at a news conference in New York that her office had a moral obligation to act.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Watch: Josh Fox Gets Arrested in Exclusive New Short from the Anti-Fracking Documentarian Crusader
Indie Wire
Kate Erbland

Documentarian and anti-fracking pioneer Josh Fox was arrested last week in Washington, D.C. while doing two of the things he does best: Protesting fracking and filming the entire thing. Fox was on hand to protest the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for its role in continuing to permit fossil fuel projects that will greatly accelerate climate change. More specifically, Fox and a group of like-minded individuals were protesting FERC’s role in using eminent domain to condemn and clear-cut a wide swath of maple trees across the Holleran family maple syrup farm in New Milford, Pennsylvania in order to make room for the Constitution pipeline (which has still not been formally approved by New York state). Fox and his cohorts took their complaints directly to the commission and put a clever spin on their protest, branding it as "Pancakes Not Pipelines," and setting up camp in front of the FERC office, where they cooked pancakes (using a solar-powered griddle) and topped them with maple syrup from the Hollerans' devastated farm. Despite the peaceful nature of the protest, Fox and others (including Megan Holleran) were arrested for "blocking passage" during the course of their demonstration.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
EPA aims to cut methane leaks from natural gas companies
Associated Press
Michael Biesecker

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration on Wednesday announced a new partnership with 41 energy companies that have agreed to voluntarily reduce methane emissions from natural gas operations to help combat climate change.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Fracking contaminated underground water in Wyoming The EPA walked away from the investigation three years ago
The Verge
Lindsey J. Smith

For the first time ever, a study demonstrated that fracking has contaminated underground water reservoirs, BuzzFeed reported. The polluted aquifer is near the small town of Pavillion, Wyoming.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
More Than Half of Americans Oppose Fracking: Gallup
247 Wall St
Paul Ausick

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has been the single biggest driver of increased U.S. crude oil and natural gas production in the past several years. But not only have horizontal drilling and fracking led to increased production, Americans’ opinion of fracking has taken a decided negative turn. In the latest poll by Gallup, 51% of Americans now oppose fracking as a means of increasing U.S. production of oil and natural gas. A year ago opposition totaled 40%.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
County looks to ramp-up fracking regulations for oil, gas companies
The Sylva Herald
Tanner Hall

County leaders say requiring mining or fracking companies to review potential impacts on the environment before beginning work is an important step in protecting area resources.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Americans’ opposition to fracking is still growing
Fusion


But a new Gallup poll shows that some still appear to be weighing the costs and benefits: since last March, there has been an 11-percentage point increase in those opposing the practice, which involves shooting large volumes of water into rock to free up hydrocarbons.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
New Brunswick government won't lift fracking moratorium until conditions met
Metro News


FREDERICTON — New Brunswick's energy and mines minister says the province won't lift a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing until all the government's conditions are met. Donald Arseneault says the government is reviewing the report of a shale gas review committee that took almost a year to study the issue.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Opposition to Fracking in US Rises to 51% From 40% Year-On-Year
Sputnik News


MOSCOW(Sputnik) – The share of US citizens who oppose drilling for shale gas and oil in a process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has risen from 40 percent in 2015 to over 50 percent this year, a poll by the US-based research company Gallup revealed Wednesday.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Spain's Lower House of Parliament Approves Ban on Fracking
Sputnik


Spain’s lower house of parliament, the Congress of Deputies, on Tuesday adopted a draft law that would ban the oil and gas companies from production with the help of hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking.   [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
Groundbreaking Study Confirms Link Between Fracking and Earthquakes
EcoWatch
Steve Horn

A groundbreaking study published Tuesday in Seismological Research Letters has demonstrated a link, for the first time, between hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) for oil and gas and earthquakes.  [Full Story]

Mar 30, 2016
COLUMN: Democrats Should Check Their Fracking Facts
Rigzone
Deon Daugherty

For the U.S. oil and gas industry – long skeptical of Democrats’ influence on their business dealings – this year’s duo of presidential contenders offers little in the way of surprising positions. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders have engaged in actual policy debate that, even though it doesn’t veer in the direction of fossil fuel promotion, sticks to the issue in a remarkable contrast to the Republicans’ contest.   [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Watch: Josh Fox Gets Arrested in Exclusive New Short from the Anti-Fracking Documentarian Crusader
Indie Wire
Kate Erbland

The "Gasland" filmmaker was arrested last week, and he's already made a new film about it.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
This new map shows where investors face greatest risk of fracking earthquakes USGS: 7 million live in areas with elevated risk of 'human-induced' earthquakes
Housing Wire
Ben Lane

For those of us that live in areas where fracking takes place, a relatively new phenomenon has sprung up in the last few years – earthquakes.   [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Green MLA calls for fracking ban in B.C. Andrew Weaver calls for moratorium after study links fracking to earthquakes in B.C. and Alberta.
Metro News
Tereza Verenca

The leader of the B.C. Green Party is calling for a moratorium on horizontal fracking in the province, the same day a study published by Canadian researchers suggests hydraulic fracking of oil and gas wells causes earthquakes in Western Canada.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Fracking behind Alberta quakes, study suggests
CBC News
Bob Weber

New research suggests that hydraulic fracking of oil and gas wells is behind earthquakes caused by humans in Western Canada.   [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
States top lawyers taking aim at fossil fuel climate change claims
Times Union
Brian Nearing

New York City Likening ongoing climate change with rising seas, melting ice caps, droughts and killer storms to "a nature walk through the Book of Revelation," former Vice President Al Gore stood Tuesday with state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to unveil a sweeping national legal coalition formed to hold the fossil fuel industry responsible for misleading the public and investors. Including 20 attorneys general, Gore called the coalition "the most hopeful step that I can remember in a long time" and predicted it would "hold to account the powerful interests that have been deceiving the American people and committing fraud in their communications."  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Audit: Pipeline monitoring agency needs better spill notification process
Times Herald Record
Hema Easley

An audit of the state agency that monitors New York’s pipelines found that it failed to verify the qualification of employees hired by operators and to set up a process to identify instances when operators do not notify it of spills and leaks. The report released Tuesday by the state Comptroller’s Office also found that the Department of Public Service did not analyze all available data to better identify potential high-risk areas. And it determined that though pipeline operators are given deadlines by which they must fix violations, neither the DPS nor federal agencies followed through to ensure work was done until it was time for the next inspection. “We determined that Operators did not notify DPS of six gas-related incidents in 2015 that should otherwise have been reported,” the audit says. The audit covers April 1, 2013, through Oct. 21, 2015. As of 2014, New York had 91,181 miles of natural gas pipelines and 1,153 miles of hazardous materials pipelines. According to DPS records, between 1995 and 2014, the state had 194 pipeline incidents resulting in 23 deaths, 123 injuries and $77 million in property damage. Two pipelines are planned for the mid-Hudson Valley that could add to DPS’s responsibilities.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Weaver Calls for B.C. Moratorium After Study Links Fracking, Earthquakes
desmog Canada
Carol Linnitt

The results of a new study linking hydraulic fracturing or fracking to induced earthquakes in B.C. and Alberta is reason to immediately halt the controversial extraction technique from being used in gas fields in B.C. according to Andrew Weaver, leader of the B.C. Green Party and MLA for Oak Bay-Gordon Head. “I am calling on both the government and the official opposition to join me in supporting a moratorium on horizontal fracking in British Columbia,” Weaver said in a statement released Tuesday. “Other jurisdictions, like Quebec, New York, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, have already suspended the practice and B.C. should follow suit.” The study found a direct link between fracking and earthquakes in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin over the last 25 years. The group studied more than 12,000 wells and seismic events larger than magnitude 3.0.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Former EPA lead investigator in Pavillion releases study linking fracking to water contamination
Casper Star Tribune
Benjamin Storrow

More than four years after he penned the explosive report linking fracking to contaminated drinking water outside of Pavillion, Domenic DiGiulio is releasing the study he always hoped the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would: A rebuttal to the years of criticism levied against federal investigators. The study by DiGulio and fellow Stanford University researcher Robert Jackson concludes much of the alarm over EPA's 2011 draft report was warranted. Poor well construction, the proximity of fracked wells to drinking water sources and the prevalence of unlined disposal pits, where diesel-oil based drilling muds and other production fluids were stored for decades, bolsters EPA's initial contention that natural gas operations were responsible for a polluted aquifer east of Pavillion, they say.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Despite the Porter Ranch disaster, the top executive at SoCal Gas is getting an enormous bonus
Los Angeles Daily News
Michael Hiltzik

Given that the Porter Ranch gas leak ranks as the worst such leak in U.S. history, with the potential to measurably damage the climate, and forcing thousands of families out of their homes, you'll be glad to know that Debra L. Reed, chairman and CEO of the gas company's parent firm, Sempra Energy, has been docked part of her pay because of the episode. But you may be appalled to hear that her penalty comes to all of $130,000, and that she's still getting a $3.17-million bonus. That's the largest bonus she's received since becoming CEO of Sempra in 2011 and adding the title of chairman in 2012, according to the company's proxy statement, dated last Friday. It brings her total compensation for 2015 to $16.1 million, meaning that her executive penalty for presiding over an elemental corporate fiasco comes to about eight tenths of 1% of her pay.   [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Even Fracking Fans Wonder Why the Feds Would Allow Drilling Under This Lake
MotherBoard
AMY MARTYN

While students work in the lab, geologist Jerry Bartz, a lab coordinator at a North Texas community college, sits at a messy desk in the back office, surrounded by piles of papers, reading reports on his computer about the risk that natural gas drilling poses on dams. He’s not one to criticize his friends in the oil industry. “I’m not anti-fracking,” he asks me several times to make clear about him. He used to work for the industry as a senior staff exploration geologist—"that’s a very high position," he says—and as environmental risk assessor. Several years ago, when a homeowner in Parker County, Texas said that the natural gas drilling near his home had turned his water flammable, Bartz says he testified as an expert witness for the state of Texas, which argued that the man’s water was already flammable. Bartz also has four oil-related patents, including one that helps oil companies detect faults deep in the ground.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Keeping My Fossil Fuel in the Ground
The New York Times
TERRY TEMPEST WILLIAMS

Castle Valley, Utah — MY husband, Brooke Williams, and I recently bought leasing rights to 1,120 acres of federal public lands near our home in Utah. The lease gives us the right to drill for oil or natural gas. We paid $1,680 for it, plus a $820 processing fee. We put it on our credit card.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Algae Blooms and Gas Wells Drive Lake Erie Methane Emissions
Earth & Space Science News
Rebecca Heisman

Despite growing recognition of the role of inland waters in the global carbon cycle, scientists have paid scant attention to the movement of carbon in and out of the Great Lakes. Seeking to fill in some of the blanks about these lakes, which rank among the world’s largest, researchers have now made initial efforts to quantify methane emissions from Lake Erie. The methane trackers report that the lake is pumping out as much as 130,000 kilograms of methane each day in late summer—nearly a third of which might be the result of underwater natural gas drilling. The lake is pumping out as much as 130,000 kilograms of methane each day in late summer.Amy Townsend-Small, a geochemist from Ohio’s University of Cincinnati, and her colleagues measured the flow of methane from Lake Erie’s surface into the air in late summer of 2012 and 2013 and took water samples at various depths and in various seasons. Researchers from Environment and Climate Change Canada collaborated on the study, which was published this month in the journal Limnology and Oceanography.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Holy Gas: Donald Trump's Foreign Policy Team Member Pushed Offshore Drilling in Israel
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

When Republican Party presidential campaign front-runner Donald Trump named 2009 DePaul University graduate George Papadoupolous as a member of his foreign policy advisory team, some in the media raised eyebrows, while others jested that his wunderkind status makes him more likely to serve as office coffee fetcher than in a position of such prestige. But you aren't named to sit on such a team without serious connections, few of which the media made with regards to Papadoupolous, who has spent most of his professional career working as a research assistant at the Hudson Institute and now works as director of the Center for International Energy and Natural Resources Law & Security at the London Center of International Law Practice. The story of who Papadoupolous is begins and ends with the Hudson Institute, a think-tank with a long history of climate change denial and anti-science advocacy.   [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Study: Fracking, Not Just Fracking Wastewater Injection, Causing Earthquakes in Western Canada
DeSmogBlog
Steve Horn

A groundbreaking study published today in Seismological Research Letters has demonstrated a link, for the first time, between hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) for oil and gas, and earthquakes. “Hydraulic Fracturing and Seismicity in the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin” confirms the horizontal drilling technique (which in essence creates an underground mini-earthquake to open up fissures for oil and gas extraction) is responsible, above and beyond what is already canonized in the scientific literature: that injecting fracking waste into underground wells can cause quakes. Now, it's not just the injections wells, but the fracking procedure itself that can be linked to seismicity. The study focuses on an area in Canada known as the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin, one of Canada's biggest shale basins and tight oil and gas producing regions.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Fracking Study Finds Toxins in Wyoming Town's Groundwater and Raises Broader Concerns
Inside Climate News
Neela Banerjee

Hydraulic fracturing and other oil and gas operations contaminated the groundwater in Pavillion, Wyoming, according to a new study by Stanford University scientists. The findings raise concerns about possible water pollution in other heavily fracked and geologically similar communities in the U.S. West. Pavillion has long been a flashpoint in the national debate over the potential impact of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on drinking water. Town residents began complaining of tainted drinking water in the 1990s, as oil and gas development boomed in the area. The Environmental Protection Agency released a draft study in 2011 indicating that oil and gas activities contaminated the town's water. But after blistering criticism from industry and Wyoming politicians, the EPA shut down its probe in 2013 and turned over sampling to state regulators. The state's studies have so far found no proof of contamination.  [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Study finds that fracking contaminated a water supply
Market Place
Scott Tong

The Energy Department found half of all U.S. continental oil production now comes from fracking, bringing enhanced energy self-sufficiency. But injecting wastewater from fracking underground has boosted the risk of earthquakes in parts of Oklahoma and Kansas to the same level as California, according to the U.S. Geology Survey. Now, a new study focuses on alleged contamination of drinking water in one of the highest-profile, longstanding cases. The location is the small town of Pavillion, Wyoming, population 231.   [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Parts of Oklahoma and Kansas now face earthquake risk on par with California Federal map of earthquake vulnerability finds threat to seven million people in central and eastern US amid increasing oil and gas production
The Guardian
Oliver Milman

People in parts of Oklahoma and Kansas now face the same threat of destructive earthquakes as Californians, with human-induced tremors from oil and gas production helping spread earthquake vulnerability across much of the US.   [Full Story]

Mar 29, 2016
Algonquin Pipeline Foes File Appeal
Peekskill-Cortlandt Patch
LANNING TALIAFERRO

A coalition of 10 groups from four states filed a petition with the District of Columbia Court of Appeals asking the court to review the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s approval of Spectra Energy’s Algonquin Incremental Market gas pipeline expansion project. The group includes Riverkeeper, Inc., Food & Water Watch, Reynolds Hill, Inc., Stop the Algonquin Pipeline Expansion and a dozen individuals. Yesterday was the last day they could file an appeal under federal rules. On Jan. 28, FERC denied eight separate rehearing requests from groups, individuals and municipalities, including the City of Boston and coalition members. Those who were denied a rehearing had 60 days to file a federal appeal.  [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Surveying begins at Ramapo Valley Reservation for controversial 2-way oil pipeline
The Record
Scott Fallon

MAHWAH — Contractors have begun surveying land in Bergen County’s largest park to determine a route for a key part of a proposed interstate oil pipeline that has received considerable public opposition. Pilgrim Pipeline’s consultants will continue ecological surveys at Ramapo Valley Reservation over the next several weeks to determine if there are any endangered animal habitats that would affect the company’s application to New Jersey environmental regulators, a company spokesman said Monday.   [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
FERC to Tennessee Gas: no immediate tree cutting for Berkshire County pipeline
The Republican
Mary Serreze

As Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. battles for immediate access to private and public lands in southern Berkshire County to begin tree cutting for its Connecticut Expansion project, federal regulators are asking for more information while making reference to Article 97 of the Massachusetts Constitution, which requires legislative approval to change the use of conservation land. Tennessee wrote to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on March 22 seeking permission to proceed with tree felling along "all portions of the project" in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New York — including within the hotly-contested Otis State Forest, where it has so far failed to procure access rights to a two-mile expanded corridor.  [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Induced Earthquakes Increase Chances of Damaging Shaking, Wastewater Disposal From Fracking Primary Cause
EcoWatch
U. S. Geological Survey

For the first time, new U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) maps identify potential ground-shaking hazards from both human-induced and natural earthquakes. In the past, USGS maps only identified natural earthquake hazards.   [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Business groups to urge New Brunswick government to end fracking moratorium
Metro News
Kevin Bissett

FREDERICTON — A collection of business groups is calling on the New Brunswick government to lift its fracking moratorium, but opponents say it's a last ditch effort to save a failing industry.   [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Community Builds Walden Pond Cabin in Thoreau-Inspired Fracking Pipeline Protest
EcoWatch
Erik Hoffner

You wouldn’t suspect that a guy who builds things for a living would become the architect of a hugely popular symbol against the building of something else, but Will Elwell and his community of Ashfield, Massachusetts, have stumbled on just such a symbol. They are against the building of the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline, which energy company Kinder Morgan subsidiary Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company wants to trench through New York and Massachusetts to carry gas from the fracking fields of Pennsylvania to the coast.  [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Scottish Conservatives call on fracking moratorium lift to boost North Sea business
Energy Voice
Niamh Forrest

The Scottish Conservatives have called for a moratorium on fracking to be lifted to help boost work for the North Sea oil and gas industry amid the decline in oil price.   [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Earthquakes caused by fracking, mapped; future of pipeline safety
Bloomberg Government
Laura Curtis

Energy Week Ahead: PHMSA Chief Talks Future of Pipeline SafetyThe massive gas leak at Sempra’s Aliso Canyon facility cast a national spotlight on PHMSA’s regulation of natural gas transmission and storage and gave new momentum to pipeline safety legislation being considered in Congress.   [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Gas Export Decision Stirs Debate Over Mass. Pipeline Need
WBUR
BRUCE GELLERMAN

BOSTON Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Energy approved plans permitting companies to export gas from Massachusetts to Canada and beyond. Opponents of the construction of two new natural gas pipelines in Massachusetts claim the DOE’s decision demonstrates that the state already has enough natural gas and doesn’t need new pipelines. But proponents say building the new pipelines — costing $8 billion — will actually save ratepayers money and secure the region’s energy future.   [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
OSHA releases new silica guidelines for workplace
Casper Star Tribune
Benjamin Storrow

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration released a controversial rule Thursday aimed at limiting the amount of silica laborers inhale on the job. Some 2.3 million people are estimated to be exposed to silica at work, primarily in the construction industry but also in the oilfield, where it is used as a component in fracking.   [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Man-made earthquakes put millions at risk, report says
USA Today
Doyle Rice

If you live in Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico and Arkansas beware: You are nearly as likely to experience an earthquake as high-hazard areas such as California, but the risk is man-made.  [Full Story]

Mar 28, 2016
Death of a Shale Gas Salesman Aubrey McClendon was fracking's greatest advocate -- until he drove his car into a concrete wall.
The Tyee
Andrew Nikiforuk Opinion

On Wednesday, March 2, Aubrey McClendon, the American face of hydraulic fracking, drove his natural-gas powered Chevy Tahoe into a concrete overpass just outside Oklahoma City. He was 56.  [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Will This Enviro Convince Colorado She’s Cool On Fossil Fuel Divestments?
Daily Caller
Chris White

As Colorado University students battle the Board of Regents over fossil fuel divestment, an environmentalist Democrat running for an open seat on the 5-4 Republican majority board is walking a political tightrope.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
LNG support is dropping in B.C.: poll Concerns over fracking have increased with only 23 per cent of British Columbians in favour.
Metro News
Tereza Verenca

A new poll suggests fewer people support the province’s plans to expand the development and export of liquefied natural gas (LNG), with fracking being a major concern. The online survey, conducted by Insights West, suggests 43 per cent of British Columbians are in favour of LNG, while 41 per cent are opposed. In August 2013, 50 per cent of residents welcomed the proclaimed expansion project and 32 per cent opposed it.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Court Strikes Down Netanyahu's Contentious Deal With Gas Drilling Firms The panel of judges nixed a clause that would commit the government not to impose any regulatory changes on the gas industry for at least 10 years.
Haaretz
Avi Bar-Eli

In a blow to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s energy policy, the High Court of Justice ruled on Sunday against the government’s controversial framework deal with companies that own and operate Israel’s offshore natural gas fields.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
FERC seeks answers from TGP on tree-cutting plans in Connecticut
The Recorder
Richie Davis

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is asking for assurances from Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. as it considers allowing the company to begin clearing trees for the Connecticut Expansion Project. Federal regulators, who certified the project two weeks ago, wrote to TGP on Friday with a request for additional information before allowing it to begin tree felling along the project’s 13.4 mile-path in order to beat a March 31 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service deadline.  [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Where Do The Remaining Presidential Candidates Stand On Climate Issues?
DeSmogBlog
Farron Cousins

We are now officially through half of the United States Presidential election primary and caucus season, and there are currently 5 contenders left in the Republican and Democratic parties vying for their party’s respective nomination. Delegate math shows that Governor John Kasich has no chance to become the Republican nominee, so we’re left with four real candidates to examine. The differences between the candidates of the two major parties could not be greater. On the Democratic side, there are two candidates who proudly embrace science and agree that action on climate issues is sorely needed. On the Republican side, both of the remaining candidates reject the scientific consensus and instead argue that climate change is nothing more than a series of unfortunate weather events.  [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
New Wolf veto to have impact
Citizens Voice
Robert Swift

Gov. Tom Wolf will let a $6.6 billion supplemental budget bill written by Republican lawmakers become law without his signature so schools and publicly supported universities get needed state aid to stay open. But Wolf plans to veto an accompanying fiscal code bill that spells out how some of the money in the budget is spent.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Gas Export Decision Stirs Debate Over Mass. Pipeline Need
WBUR
Bruce Gellerman

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Energy approved plans permitting companies to export gas from Massachusetts to Canada and beyond. Opponents of the construction of two new natural gas pipelines in Massachusetts claim the DOE’s decision demonstrates that the state already has enough natural gas and doesn’t need new pipelines.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
New Study Finds Fracking Would Exacerbate Local Air Pollution
Pollution Solutions


According to a new report from the Newcastle University, the process of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) would increase local air pollution levels by up to 30%. The study, which was published in the journal Environment International, also predicted that the industry could cause permanent damage to rural roadways and cause nearby residents distress in the form of excessive noise pollution.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Upton anti-fracking eviction: energy firm makes no offer to pay £200K policing costs
Chester Chroinicle


An energy company boss has rejected angry claims by the Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) that a ‘costly’ eviction of a protest camp near Chester could have been avoided.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Texas oil and gas regulators keep close ties to industry
LMT online
Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The cozy relationship between state oil and gas regulators and the industry they monitor is typified by a revolving door of officials who leave the Texas Railroad Commission to lobby for energy companies, including several who recently departed and made six-figure salaries working the Capitol hallways last year.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Infrared cameras reveal hidden air pollution from oil and gas drilling Opponents say infrared tech isn't reliable, affordable
Houston Chronicle
James Osborne

A pair of state and federal government inspectors spent two weeks traveling around northern Colorado's oil and gas fields in early 2012, filming with an infrared camera.  [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Marginal wells a tipping point for industry
Farmington Daily Times
James Fenton

FARMINGTON — Hampered by low natural gas and crude oil prices and leery of pending revisions of federal regulations intended to tighten oil and gas industry regulations, San Juan County operators are making payroll cuts and closing wells as they struggle to keep running.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Activist: Back Mountain Chamber members should have their own say in pipeline project
Citizens Voice
Elizabeth Skrapits

The president of the Back Mountain’s Chamber of Commerce stands behind the organization’s support of a controversial natural gas pipeline. But a local activist thinks the individual members should have had their say.   [Full Story]

Mar 27, 2016
Passing of fracking bill changes NOGCC's responsibilities The Nebraska legislature approved LB 1082 by a vote of 48-0-1
KOTA
Cearron Bagenda

LINCOLN - The passing of a bill that changes the responsibilities of the Nebraska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has been “a lot of work” according to Senator John Stinner.   [Full Story]

Mar 26, 2016
EPA criticizes state fracking study
Casper Star Tribune
Benjamin Storrow

Wyoming regulators downplayed health concerns, glossed over ambiguities and made unsubstantiated claims about the source of contamination in their study of the polluted drinking water east of Pavillion, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency review shows. Those findings, delivered in comments to the state earlier this month, raised questions over state officials’ contention that natural gas operations are not responsible for pollution found in some water wells outside this central Wyoming community of roughly 230 people.   [Full Story]

Mar 25, 2016
Millennium planning pipeline in Orange
Times Herald Record
James Nani

MIDDLETOWN - The $63 million natural gas compressor station planned for the Town of Highland in Sullivan County is part of a larger, $275 million project by Millennium Pipeline Company that would also lay down 7.8 miles of pipeline in western Orange County. Millennium submitted its preliminary plans for its "Eastern System Upgrade" project to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in January. The Rockland County-based company owns and operates pipelines but not the natural gas that flows through them. The project includes a new compressor station at the company's existing station in Hancock and a new, 22,400-horsepower compressor station in Highland. It also calls for about 7.8 miles of pipe, most of it 36 inches in diameter, to run parallel to an existing pipeline.  [Full Story]

Mar 25, 2016
New Mexico reviews water injection wells for damages
The Eagle
Associated Press

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's state land commissioner is ordering a broad examination of easements for injection wells used by the oil and natural gas industry to dispose of waste saltwater, in response to environmental damage at a site in the southeast of the state.   [Full Story]

Mar 25, 2016
Exxon Must Hold Shareholder Vote on Climate Change Resolutions, SEC Says
Inside Climate News
David Hasemyer

ExxonMobil must allow shareholders to vote on at least two prominent resolutions on climate change, the Securities and Exchange Commission ruled. One measure calls on Exxon to take moral responsibility for climate change and adopt a policy to limit average global temperature increases. A second would compel the oil giant to explain how its business would be affected by the worldwide commitment to slowing climate change. They are among seven resolutions on global warming proposed for Exxon's May 25 annual meeting. "The SEC has rejected Exxon's attempt to silence investors' concerns about growing financial risks associated with climate change trends, including escalating global demand for low-carbon energy," said Shanna Cleveland, a senior manager at Ceres, a Boston nonprofit that coordinates action on issues important to many of the nation's largest institutional investors.  [Full Story]

Mar 25, 2016
Texas oil and gas regulator dashes Army Corps’ drilling rule
FuelFix
Associated Press

GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas — Texas’ oil and gas regulator has challenged the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ authority to ban hydraulic fracturing and limit injection wells near a North Texas dam. In a letter sent to the corps on Thursday, Texas Railroad Commission Executive Director Kimberly Corley questioned restrictions the corps announced last week that would ban fracking within 4,000 feet and limit injection wells within five miles of the Joe Pool Lake dam.  [Full Story]

Mar 25, 2016
Renewable Energy Investments Set New Record, Twice That of Coal and Gas
EcoWatch
Climate Nexus

Global investment in renewable energy was more than twice that of coal and gas last year, according to a new report, despite plummeting fossil fuel prices.   [Full Story]

Mar 25, 2016
FERC Answers Cuomo's Request to Halt Pipeline Expansion during Indian Point Review
Peekskill Daily Voice
LANNING TALIAFERRO

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has denied New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's request that FERC temporarily halt the AIM pipeline expansion project while his administration does a safety analysis of the pipeline past the Indian Point Nuclear Plant. The governor, who wants the nuclear power plant closed, had ordered his health and environmental agencies to look into a series of outages at the plant and also a recently disclosed leak of radioactive tritium into the groundwater at the plant in Cortlandt.  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
MarkWest under federal investigation
Observer-Reporter
David Singer

The Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Justice are leading an investigation into natural gas drilling practices conducted by MarkWest Liberty Midstream, LLC. The investigation began July 6, 2015, following a site inspection at an undisclosed location in Washington County, according to public records. The investigation is centered on “pigging,” or line cleaning and maintenance, according to Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection spokesman John Poister. State and federal officials have been otherwise mum on the probe since a Freedom of Information Act request filed by the Observer-Reporter on Feb. 4 seeking emails between the government agencies and MarkWest was denied March 9. The denial letter from the EPA said the request for records was exempt from mandatory disclosure because their release “could reasonably be expected to interfere with (law) enforcement proceedings.”  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Too Soon to Celebrate the Demise of Jordan Cove
Blue Oregon
Nick Abraham

Earlier this month in a decision that caught everyone from activists to the Governor’s office by surprise, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rejected plans to build a massive liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal, known as Jordan Cove, in Coos Bay, Oregon. The project also would build a pipeline cutting across more than half the state. "Because the record does not support a finding that the public benefits of the Pacific Connector Pipeline outweigh the adverse effects on landowners, we deny Pacific Connector's request...to construct and operate the pipeline," said the FERC order.  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Global coal and gas investment falls to less than half that in clean energy
The Guardianu
Fiona Harvey

Global investment in coal and gas-fired power generation plants fell to less than half that in renewable energy generation last year, in a record year for clean energy. It was the first time that renewable energy made up a majority of all the new electricity generation capacity under construction around the world, and the first year in which the financial investment by developing countries in renewables outstripped that of the developed world.  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Study Documents Climate Threats Imposed by Trade Deals Like the TPP
Food & Water Watch
Patrick Woodall

A new Sierra Club report shows how the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) could undermine efforts to ban fracking and fight climate change. To date, over 500 communities in the U.S. have passed measures against the controversial form of oil and gas extraction known as fracking. But a comprehensive new study by our allies at the Sierra Club shows that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) could undermine momentum to ban fracking nationwide and block climate-destroying pipelines.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
New Rules Aim to Reduce Silica Exposure at Work Sites
New York Times
Barry Meier

New Rules Aim to Reduce Silica Exposure at Work Sites The Labor Department plans to announce on Thursday new rules that sharply reduce workplace exposure to silica, a potentially deadly mineral found in materials commonly used in construction and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
7 Arrested at ‘Pancakes Not Pipelines’ Protest at FERC
EcoWatch


Gasland filmmaker Josh Fox, Megan Holleran and five others were arrested in the driveway of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) today while waiting for commissioners to join them for pancakes topped with the last drops of maple syrup from the Holleran family farm in New Milford, Pennsylvania. They and about two dozen other activists were protesting FERC’s approval for the clear-cutting of a wide swath of maple trees at the Holleran farm for the construction of the Constitution Pipeline.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
New Rules Aim to Reduce Silica Exposure at Work Sites
The New York Times
BARRY MEIER

The Labor Department plans to announce on Thursday new rules that sharply reduce workplace exposure to silica, a potentially deadly mineral found in materials commonly used in construction and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Safety experts have urged a tightening of silica exposure standards since the 1970s because research shows that particles of the mineral, when inhaled, can cause silicosis, a disabling and sometimes fatal lung disease. However, progress was stymied for decades by resistance from affected companies and regulatory inaction.  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Fracking-linked earthquakes open sociopolitical rifts in Oklahoma
Free Speech Radio News


In the past year, Oklahoma had more than 900 earthquakes. That’s up from only three quakes in 2007, before the dramatic increase in fracking. The Oklahoma Geological Survey says that it now “considers it very likely” that many of the earthquakes in Oklahoma were caused “by the injection of produced water in disposal wells” as a byproduct of fracking. Last month, the Sierra Club and Public Justice filed a lawsuit against three energy companies, saying they have contributed to the huge upsurge in earthquakes in Oklahoma.  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Michigan Republicans Are Trying To Change Election Law To Stop Liberal Ballot Initiatives
Think Progress
Emily Atkin

Grassroots groups in Michigan say they’re about to achieve something big. This year, if they get enough petition signatures, voters might get to decide at the ballot box whether to ban fracking and legalize marijuana.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
How Fracking Fuels Republican Congressional Clout
Wharton University


“Since the beginning of the shale boom, 17 Democratic seats have shifted to Republicans … that’s half of the current Republican majority in Congress.”  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
'Fracture' raises alarm about dangers of fracking in prose, verse
Chicago Tribune
Thomas Fate

The same night I first started reading "Fracture," a new literary anthology about hydraulic fracturing (or "fracking"), I happened to hear Sen. Al Franken (D.-Minn.) on CNN, endorsing the practice as a "viable part of our energy policy." "Fracking isn't all bad," Franken claimed, because, he argued, the production of natural gas through fracking is less harmful to the environment and climate change than coal production, which it might replace.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Legislative Pulse: Texas State Rep. Phil King Fights for Fracking and Against Federal Overreach
Heartland
H. Sterling Burnett

Burnett: In 2015, you co-authored a bill preventing municipalities from banning fracking. Why did you feel this bill was needed? King: Oil and gas deposits don’t stop at city limits.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Govt misses fracking safeguard chance
Farm Weekly
Mal Gill

AN opportunity for the State Government to engender public confidence in its administration of so-called fracking for gas in the Midwest, has been lost. That is the view of the government's coalition partners The Nationals WA MPs and particularly Moore MP Shane Love.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Bill McKibben: Fracking Has Turned Out to Be a Costly Detour
EcoWatch
Deidre Fulton

With a new piece in The Nation, environmental leader Bill McKibben upends widely held assumptions not just about President Barack Obama’s climate legacy, but about the so-called “natural gas revolution” that was once considered a “savior” in the fight against global warming.  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Oil milestone: Fracking fuels half of U.S. output
WPTZ
Matt Egan

The rise of fracking has reshaped the global energy landscape. It recently hit a new milestone in the U.S. Fracking now accounts for more than half of all U.S. oil output, according to the Energy Information Administration. It's a stunning feat considering fracking made up less than 2% of American oil production in 2000.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Aboriginal Groups Fight Fracking, State's Destruction of Land
TelesurTV


The Australian government claims fracking does not pose environmental risks that cannot be managed.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
FERC deference to pipeline operators seen contributing to overbuild
SNL
Tom Pawlicki

Discoveries of oil and gas in new regions in the U.S. typically bring the need for additional pipelines to take the resources to market. But with natural gas production booming in the past 10 years, industry experts believe that increased use of gas for power generation and deference by regulators may result in a potential overbuild of pipeline infrastructure. Signs of pipeline overbuild The number of interstate natural gas pipelines and compressor stations that have been proposed and approved in recent years is growing. "In 2014, there were 26 pipelines that were approved and then an additional 20 that were proposed," Carolyn Elefant, a private attorney that represents impacted communities during the pipeline conception process, said at a conference held by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis on March 15. "In 2015, there were 54 pipelines proposed and 30 that were approved. There are definitely many more cases."  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
After 146 years, Rockefeller family is exiting the oil business
CBS News


Heirs to the oil fortune created by John D. Rockefeller, who founded Standard Oil in 1870, are exiting the family business. The Rockefeller Family Fund, a charity that supports causes related to the environment, economic justice and other issues, is liquidating its investments in fossil fuel companies, including Exxon Mobil (XOM). "While the global community works to eliminate the use of fossil fuels, it makes little sense -- financially or ethically -- to continue holding investments in these companies," the fund said on Wednesday in a statement. "There is no sane rationale for companies to continue to explore for new sources of hydrocarbons."  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
'Gasland' Director Josh Fox Arrested at 'Pancakes Not Pipelines' Protest
Alternet
Lee Ziesche

The director and activist was arrested while serving pancakes during an anti-pipeline protest at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Washington, D.C. Academy-award nominated filmmaker Josh Fox (GASLAND) and others from the activist group Beyond Extreme Energy were arrested today protesting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for its role in continuing to permit fossil fuel projects that will greatly accelerate climate change.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Why this new solar market could be set to explode
Washington Post
Chris Mooney

Solar has been growing extremely fast in these existing markets. But more and more, analysts say, there’s a middle-range market whose large potential is just becoming clear. It’s bigger than individual rooftop installations but smaller than vast solar farms. And it’s for a much broader and diverse range of people than fairly wealthy, suburban homeowners.   [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
7 Arrested at ‘Pancakes Not Pipelines’ Protest at FERC
EcoWatch


Gasland filmmaker Josh Fox, Megan Holleran and five others were arrested in the driveway of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) today while waiting for commissioners to join them for pancakes topped with the last drops of maple syrup from the Holleran family farm in New Milford, Pennsylvania. They and about two dozen other activists were protesting FERC’s approval for the clear-cutting of a wide swath of maple trees at the Holleran farm for the construction of the Constitution Pipeline.  [Full Story]

Mar 24, 2016
Help Shine a Light on FERC
Rodale
Maya K. van Rossum, the Delaware Riverkeeper

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has been “captured” by the very industries it is supposed to regulate—particularly pipeline companies. It’s an agency that has become so entangled with industry that it’s now violating the constitutional rights of communities and families across the nation. Sound unfairly harsh? Well, remember that the United States Constitution requires that federal government agencies like FERC be neutral in the decisions they make. In fact, James Madison’s sacred document declares that they must be free not just from actual bias, but even from the mere appearance of bias. FERC fails both tests. Here’s why: Alone among independent executive agencies of government with this level of adjudicatory authority, FERC receives full funding from the companies it regulates. That’s like having a basketball referee be paid his salary by one of the teams in the game. No wonder FERC keeps giving slam-dunks to pipeline companies.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Climate Activists Disrupt Gulf Oil and Gas Auction in New Orleans
Inside Climate News
Zahra Hirji

More than 300 climate activists swarmed the Louisiana Superdome Wednesday morning to protest a federal auction of oil and gas drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico. The action was part of the larger "Keep It in the Ground" movement aimed at stopping new fossil fuel production on publicly owned lands and waterways. The protesters—environmental justice and climate leaders, college students, community organizers, tribal members and pastors—massed in the morning outside the Superdome in New Orleans, waving signs and banners and erecting climate-related art displays. About 100 demonstrators then marched in the stadium and into the auction room, chanting: "Don't auction our climate. The people won't be quiet!"  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Madison County Commission Meets to Combat Fracking
WTXL
Alex Cordero

MADISON, Fl. (WTXL) -- The Madison County Commission met this evening to discuss new items on the agenda including the review of a planned ordinance that would prevent fracking in the county. The ordinance did not get passed during the meeting, but the agenda did call for the discussion of the pending ordinance, making sure it would be ready for approval.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
City frames guidelines for fracking
C & G News
Terry Oparka

A divided Troy City Council approved guidelines for oil and gas extraction that are stricter than state guidelines.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Adams County Commissioners lift ban on fracking Six-week moratorium comes to an end with commissioners approving additional fees, regulations
the Westminster Window
Gene Sears

Adams County commissioners drew the ire of both fracking activists and oil and gas producers March 22 when they allowed a six-week moratorium on new drilling to expire while approving additional fees and regulations on new oil and gas activity.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
As New York Gov. Cuomo’s Energy Policy Went Greener, Natural Gas Industry Spent More On Lobbying
International Business Times
NED RESNIKOFF

The natural gas industry has dramatically stepped up its efforts to lobby the New York state government since Gov. Andrew Cuomo took office in 2011, according to a new report from the nonprofit Public Accountability Initiative. Based on an analysis of data from the state’s public disclosure database, the group found that five major natural gas firms have collectively more than doubled their annual lobbying expenditures in the past five years. In 2011, two firms spent $578,454 on lobbying; by 2015, three other companies were also lobbying the state, and together all five spent nearly $1.3 million that year.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Obama Administration’s Plan To Expand Oil And Gas Drilling In Gulf of Mexico Draws Protests In New Orleans
IB Times
Maria Gallucci

The Obama administration Wednesday opened millions of acres in the Gulf of Mexico for oil and gas drilling at a lease sale in New Orleans, drawing hundreds of protestors from across the Gulf region, who rallied outside and within the event at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Want a bigger gas drilling buffer zone around Joe Pool Lake Dam? Fat chance
Dallas Morning News
Jim Mitchell

When the state Legislature big-footed the desire of citizens in Denton to control gas drilling in their city, I knew it was only a matter of time before that would cause problems elsewhere.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Intense seismic sound blasts are next big concern for anti-drilling advocates
The Virginian-Pilot
Dave Mayfield

Opponents of oil and gas drilling along the East Coast breathed sighs of relief last week when federal officials announced that the Atlantic had been dropped from the next offshore leasing plan.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Scientists Urge Feds to Continue Fracking Moratorium off CA Coast
Indy Bay
Dan Bacher

The opposition to environmentally destructive fracking in California's marine waters is building rapidly. On March 22, over 30 prominent scientists urged the federal government to continue the moratorium on fracking in federal waters off the California coast and to prepare a comprehensive environmental impact statement for the controversial oil-industry technique.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Fracking talk draws crowds; County officials to form study committee to check laws
Northwest Georgia News
Blake Doss

Initiative’s advocacy coordinator asked the Floyd County Commission on Tuesday to create a committee to determine if the county’s fracking laws need to be strengthened or shored up.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Fracking bill dies in FL Senate
FSU News
Aryanna Duhl

Hydraulic and acidic fracturing "fracking" bill 318 has been highly controversial in Florida, with opponents fierce in their efforts to stop its passing in the Senate.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Inconvenient Truths: Gasland Director Josh Fox Says It May Be Too Late for Planet Earth
INDY Week
David Hudnall

nvironmentalists lose a lot. But Josh Fox's 2010 documentary Gasland, which examined the dangers of the natural-gas drilling technique known as fracking, was a winner. In addition to a host of awards, Fox won the environmental battle in his own backyard: in 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo banned fracking in New York. The film—particularly the scene in which a homeowner sets fire to the water coming out of his tap—arguably mobilized the antifracking movement more than any newspaper article or nonprofit's study.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Porter Ranch homes to be tested for gas-leak chemicals that may linger indoors
Los Angeles Daily News
Susan Abram

Los Angeles County health officials will begin air tests inside more than 120 Porter Ranch homes, to look for residual chemicals as a result of the massive natural gas leak that spewed methane into neighborhoods for almost four months. • RELATED STORY: Oil company Termco showed ‘total lack of regard’ in venting gas near Porter Ranch, should be prosecuted, says councilman “We will be looking at a variety of chemicals in the indoor environment,” said Angelo Bellomo, deputy director for health protection at the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. “We will be examining both the gaseous and potentially vapor based chemicals as well as fine particulate matter in the homes.”  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
We had all better hope these scientists are wrong about the planet’s future
The Washington Post
Chris Mooney

An influential group of scientists led by James Hansen, the former NASA scientist often credited with having drawn the first major attention to climate change in 1988 congressional testimony, has published a dire climate study that suggests the impact of global warming will be quicker and more catastrophic than generally envisioned. The research invokes collapsing ice sheets, violent megastorms and even the hurling of boulders by giant waves in its quest to suggest that even 2 degrees Celsius of global warming above pre-industrial levels would be far too much. Hansen has called it the most important work he has ever done. The sweeping paper, 52 pages in length and with 19 authors, draws on evidence from ancient climate change or “paleo-climatology,” as well as climate experiments using computer models and some modern observations. Calling it a “paper” really isn’t quite right — it’s actually a synthesis of a wide range of old, and new, evidence.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Wyo Supreme Court awards Arvada rancher $1.1 million for CBM cleanup
Casper Star Tribune
Benjamin Storrow

The Wyoming Supreme Court has ruled in favor of an Arvada-area rancher who had sought $1.1 million from Pennaco Energy in an attempt to clean up 10 abandoned coal-bed methane wells on his property. Justice Michael Davis, writing for the court earlier this month, said Pennaco’s sale of the wells to a now-bankrupt operator did not relieve the company of its reclamation obligations on Brett Sorenson’s ranch. The company was bound by the terms of the surface use agreement it signed, which required the coal-bed methane operator to remove its equipment and restore the land to its original state.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Flaws in Government’s Analysis of Offshore Fracking and Acidizing Exposed by Environmental Groups
Independet


SANTA BARBARA—Today the Environmental Defense Center (“EDC”) and Surfrider Foundation (“Surfrider”) submitted comments illustrating numerous fundamental flaws in the federal government’s first ever environmental analysis of fracking and acidizing from offshore oil platforms in southern California, including the Santa Barbara Channel.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Support for B.C. LNG industry slipping: poll
The Vancouver Sun
Gordon Hoekstra

Support for the B.C. Liberal government’s plan to create a liquefied natural gas (LNG) export industry has slipped since just after the 2013 election, an Insights West poll has found. In an online survey of 802 adults conducted this month, 43 per cent of British Columbians said they supported the provincial government’s push to expand the development and export of LNG, while 41 per cent were opposed.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
EDC Points Out Offshore Fracking Flaws
Edhat
Environmental Defense Center

Today the Environmental Defense Center (“EDC”) and Surfrider Foundation (“Surfrider”) submitted comments illustrating numerous fundamental flaws in the federal government’s first ever environmental analysis of fracking and acidizing from offshore oil platforms in southern California, including the Santa Barbara Channel. In response to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (“BOEM”) and Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement’s (“BSEE”) draft programmatic environmental assessment (“draft PEA”), the comment letter states the federal agencies’ analysis overlooks potentially significant impacts, such as harmful impacts of toxic discharges of frac flowback fluid on the marine environment or extending the life of oil platforms, and requests that the agencies conduct more comprehensive environmental review.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Protesters crash federal oil and gas lease sale in New Orleans
The Times-Picayune
Jennifer Larino

Yudith Nieto caught her second wind as she watched her fellow activists swarm the Mercedes-Benz Superdome to protest the Wednesday morning (March 23) sale of federal oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico. Nieto, a community activist and artist in Houston, drove to New Orleans on Tuesday and stayed up all night painting long banners for the rally. Sleep can wait, Nieto said, straining to speak over the chanting crowd. That morning Nieto was focused on putting an end to the offshore oil drilling she says threatens the future of the Gulf Coast, its environment and the health of its people.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
From Flint to fracking, EPA can learn from its mistakes
The Hill
Barbara Gottlieb

As most of us have heard by now, an emergency manager in Flint, Michigan switched water sources from Lake Huron to the Flint River in April 2014 to cut costs without adding required corrosion controls. The EPA was aware of dangerously high levels of lead in the water supply the following year, but chose to remain silent for months. The result? Hundreds of Flint children are thought to now have elevated blood-lead levels, which can lead to serious, irreversible damage to the nervous system.  [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Four scary new things about global warming we've just learned
Catholic Online
Marshall Connolly

LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - There are four points worth nothing today: -Carbon dioxide levels are rising at a faster rate than at any time in the past 66 million years. -Methane emissions are also much higher than anticipated. -Global warming is coming faster, in correlation with spikes in methane and CO2. -The impacts will be more severe than originally thought and will occur within the next human lifetime.   [Full Story]

Mar 23, 2016
Global Warming’s Terrifying New Chemistry
The Nation
Bill McKibben

Global warming is, in the end, not about the noisy political battles here on the planet’s surface. It actually happens in constant, silent interactions in the atmosphere, where the molecular structure of certain gases traps heat that would otherwise radiate back out to space. If you get the chemistry wrong, it doesn’t matter how many landmark climate agreements you sign or how many speeches you give. And it appears the United States may have gotten the chemistry wrong. Really wrong. There’s one greenhouse gas everyone knows about: carbon dioxide, which is what you get when you burn fossil fuels. We talk about a “price on carbon” or argue about a carbon tax; our leaders boast about modest “carbon reductions.” But in the last few weeks, CO2’s nasty little brother has gotten some serious press. Meet methane, otherwise known as CH4.  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Purchase agreements in place for Atlantic Coast Pipeline
The Washington Post
Steve Szkotak?

RICHMOND, Va. — Purchase agreements have been signed for virtually all of the natural gas that would be delivered to the Southeast by the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, the lead energy company behind the $5 billion project said Tuesday. Diane Leopold, president of Dominion Energy Inc., said the utility agreements reflect the need for the nearly 600-mile energy project delivering fracked natural gas along a route from West Virginia, through Virginia and into North Carolina.  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Feds defend fracking rule against judicial hold
The Hill
Timothy Cama

The Obama administration is fighting in federal court to defend its hydraulic fracturing (fracking) rule, saying a lower court committed a “legal error” when it put the regulation on hold. Lawyers representing the Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) are asking the Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver to overturn a Wyoming-based court’s decision last year to halt the rule and allow regulators to enforce it. That judicial injunction stemmed from the arguments from various states and the oil and natural gas industry that Congress has expressly prohibited the federal government from regulating fracking, even on federal and American Indian land, as the BLM did early last year.  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Monitoring greenhouse gas emissions independently
phys.org


Mistakes can happen when estimating emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane. Researchers funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation have developed a method to independently validate national statistics. he signatory countries of the Kyoto Protocol and the new Paris Agreement have committed to reduce global warming. The countries themselves use estimates and projections to verify whether they are actually achieving the necessary reduction in greenhouse gases. The uncertainties are considerable and mistakes do happen. Researchers funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) have developed a method to independently monitor these statistics by making direct measurements of the gases in the atmosphere.   [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Ky. Senators want radioactive waste study
Courier Journal
James Bruggers

Kentucky state senators on Tuesday rallied around a bill that seeks to make sure the state is protected from radioactive waste produced during oil and gas drilling. The Senate's Natural Resources and Energy Committee unanimously approved its version of House Bill 563, sending it to the floor for a vote. "There is a distrust of government out there by some citizens," said Rep. Cluster Howard, a Democrat whose district includes an Estill County landfill where state officials say dangerous radioactive waste was dumped last year.  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Feds defend fracking rule against judicial hold
The Hill
Timothy Cama

The Obama administration is fighting in federal court to defend its hydraulic fracturing (fracking) rule, saying a lower court committed a “legal error” when it put the regulation on hold. Lawyers representing the Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) are asking the Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver to overturn a Wyoming-based court’s decision last year to halt the rule and allow regulators to enforce it. That judicial injunction stemmed from the arguments from various states and the oil and natural gas industry that Congress has expressly prohibited the federal government from regulating fracking, even on federal and American Indian land, as the BLM did early last year. “The district court held that Congress has ‘directly spoken to the issue and precluded federal agency authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing not involving the use of diesel fuels.’ That was legal error,” lawyers wrote late Monday in their opening brief in their appeal of the injunction. “Congress has never directly spoken to BLM’s authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian lands,” they said. “Congress instead delegated BLM broad authority to regulate all oil and gas operations on federal and Indian lands. Congress has not carved hydraulic fracturing out of that express delegation of authority.”  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
PHMSA Announces Proposed Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Rules
JDSupra
Paul Forshay, Allison Speaker, Michael Stosser

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has issued a proposal to implement regulations that would add new safety measures designed to raise existing safety standards applicable to pipelines currently regulated by PHMSA. The Administration also proposes to make those safety regulations applicable to pipelines that previously had been exempt, because they had been placed in service before 1970 or because they were gathering systems. The 549-page Pipeline Safety: Safety of Gas Transmission and Gathering Pipelines (Proposed Rule) proposes new rules aimed at strengthening the way gas pipeline systems are operated, inspected and maintained. PHMSA's Proposed Rule follows up on the agency's earlier Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANOPR), which was issued on October 18, 2010. In its ANOPR, PHMSA sought public input on proposed revisions to its pipeline safety regulations, applicable to gas transmission and gas gathering pipelines. The Proposed Rule now issues against a backdrop of continuing significant Congressional action regarding pipeline safety, and represents the latest step in PHMSA's efforts to respond to pipeline incidents like the San Bruno, California pipeline explosion.  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Fire Chiefs Want More Answers to Plan for Pipeline
Emergency Management
Meghan Foley, The Keene Sentinel, N.H

The Rindge Fire Department has four of them, Fitzwilliam has two, and Temple and Winchester each have one. The devices — known as multi-gas detectors or meters — measure levels of combustible gas so firefighters can determine if an area affected by a natural gas or propane leak is safe. The equipment also scans for potentially deadly chemicals, such as carbon monoxide. In these small, rural southwestern New Hampshire towns that don’t have natural gas distribution systems, the fire departments — some on call, others volunteer — can get by with the gas detectors they already have, their fire chiefs say. But if the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline is built, that may change. The fire chiefs are concerned they may need more to protect their residents, particularly if a problem with the high-pressure, natural gas transmission line were to arise. And with that, the question becomes who will pay for additional gas meters: the fire departments, whose annually operating budgets can be blown by repairs to a broken down fire truck or a hazardous waste event, or the North American energy company proposing the approximately $5.2 billion controversial project? Gas meters are just one of other wider concerns area fire chiefs have about the pipeline. At a meeting in Keene last month, fire chiefs and officers asked Kinder Morgan representatives a slew of questions, including who they should contact at the company in the event of a pipeline incident, how long it would take for that person to respond, the company’s plan for addressing various emergency scenarios, and what chemicals from the fracking process would be mixed with the natural gas? “Basically, the answer is if something happens you report it, and someone from the company will be there within the hour,” Fitzwilliam Fire Chief Nancy W. Carney said. “That’s OK, but what happens until then? What do I tell residents living on the other side of the pipeline?” Houston-based Kinder Morgan is the parent company of Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. LLC, which is developing the 419-mile interstate line slated to carry fracked natural gas from the shale fields in northern Pennsylvania to Dracut, Mass. Along the way, it’s proposed to pass through 18 communities in southern New Hampshire, including the Cheshire County towns of Fitzwilliam, Richmond, Rindge, Troy and Winchester. “In reality, if we have a pipeline incident where there is an odor or someone sees discoloration in the ground from a leak, our main job will be to isolate the area, contain what we can contain and evacuate,” Rindge Fire Chief Rickard J. Donovan said Sunday. But to do so, firefighters must know how much natural gas they’re dealing with and over how large an area, he said. His understanding, he said, is that the pipeline will have valves every five to seven miles that can be closed if there is a problem. But that would still leave a lot of area, households and businesses to cover with the department’s gas meters, he said. He’d like to see Rindge get a couple more detectors if the pipeline goes through, but he doesn’t know if Kinder Morgan will provide them, he said. There’s precedent for such a donation in Rindge. Following a suspected Freon leak at the town’s Market Basket in 2013, which sent nine employees to the hospital, the Massachusetts-based company bought the fire department equipment necessary to handle such a leak, Donovan said. Company officials viewed it as a way of protecting their interests and the community’s should such a leak happen again, he said. “I hope Kinder Morgan feels the same way,” he said. The gas meter the Winchester Fire Department uses must be calibrated annually, and that costs about $300 to $400, and puts the device out of service for about a month because it has to be sent out for the work, according to Winchester Fire Chief Barry Kellom. If Kinder Morgan does purchase gas detectors for the fire departments, he’d like to see everyone get the same models, he said. That way, a firefighter from Winchester could operate the Richmond Fire Department’s gas meter if need be, he said. But will Kinder Morgan provide the meters? The question was asked during the meeting in Keene last month with other area fire chiefs, three company representatives and N.H. State Fire Marshal J. William Degnan. Carney, who attended the Feb. 3 meeting, said that the response the Kinder Morgan representatives provided indicated they’d have to find out the answer and get back to them. Temple Deputy Fire Chief Matt L. Bruneau and Kellom, who also attended the meeting, agreed with Carney’s recollection. “They definitely weren’t forthcoming in putting their name on the dotted line to support that,” Bruneau said. He added that New Ipswich Fire Chief Meredith Lund asked the question. Besides the pipeline, New Ipswich is slated to host a 41,000-horsepower compressor station, which would help transport natural gas and keep it properly pressurized. Temple isn’t one of the pipeline towns, but it abuts New Ipswich. Temple Elementary School is roughly a quarter mile from the proposed compressor station. Efforts to reach Lund over the weekend were unsuccessful. When asked by email Thursday if the answer Kinder Morgan representatives provided at the meeting remained the company’s response, Northeast Energy Direct project spokesman Richard N. Wheatley didn’t reply directly to the question. He said Tennessee Gas Pipeline has, and continues to address public and agency concerns. “In addition to assessing future emergency responder training needs, Tennessee Gas has begun and will continue to discuss concerns such as manpower, equipment, security measures, and increase of presence patrols with local fire and police departments along the proposed Project route,” he said in the email. Seeking answers In October 2015, Carney submitted two, page-and-a-half lists of questions and comments to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about public safety concerns she and other area fire chiefs have about the pipeline. At the time, the project was in the pre-filing process with the agency. It’s now in the filing process, with Tennessee Gas Pipeline officials asking the commission to approve their application by the fourth quarter of this year so they can begin construction in January 2017. FERC is the sole agency that has the power to approve or deny the project. In her letter, Carney asked about Kinder Morgan’s emergency response plan, both during and after the pipeline’s construction, when her fire department would receive a copy of those plans, and how would emergency responders be able to access roads crossed by the pipeline that only have one way in and out. She also asked if the company would provide and pay for training and equipment for all first responders to handle potential pipeline emergencies, and what security monitoring would be done along the pipeline, according to the letter. “There are still definitely more questions than answers,” Carney said last week. As a fire chief, she needs to be prepared, and that includes identifying hazards and pre-planning for pipeline incidents, she said. “It’s not my position to say whether I’m for or against the pipeline, but I have some concerns,” she said. “The hardest thing for me as fire chief is I want to pre-plan, but I’m not getting the information, or they keep changing it.” Through the FERC process, some of the questions posed by area fire chiefs have gotten the attention of Tennessee Gas Pipeline officials, who responded to them and others in a filing with the federal agency on March 17. In the document, FERC officials asked company representatives to address certain public safety concerns including local public services, such as police and fire departments, not having the manpower or equipment to respond to pipeline or compressor station emergencies. In response, Project Management Specialist Samuel L. Johnson 2nd wrote that company officials had addressed the concerns throughout the pre-filing process, and would continue to discuss them during the application process. “In the unlikely event of an incident, local emergency officials will be responsible for managing and protecting people (i.e. traffic control, handling injuries),” he wrote. Wheatley said in his email Friday that Tennessee Gas Pipeline officials have begun to coordinate with first responders on how to handle a construction or gas pipeline emergency. “Tennessee Gas has established and maintains liaison with fire, police, and public officials in areas where it currently operates and will establish liaison in those areas where it currently does not have facilities,” he said. He added that company officials have participated in a collaborative effort with the N.H. State Fire Marshal “to proactively address questions by stakeholders” affected by the pipeline. Degnan said last week that the Feb. 3 meeting was held because his office saw gaps in responses from communities outside of Keene during that city’s gas emergency in December 2015. A power outage caused a propane-air distribution system owned by Liberty Utilities in Keene to malfunction, sending pure propane to customers with the potential for carbon monoxide to be release when burned. The fire marshal’s office also used the meeting as an opportunity to provide some preliminary training to those departments about the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline, Degnan said, and he intends for there to be additional meetings and training that will go into more detail. As for getting Kinder Morgan to pay for equipment such as gas meters, and getting the necessary information to pre-plan, it would be up to the communities to talk directly with the company, he said. “We don’t have any role; if a fire chief calls us, we would assist them,” he said. “We don’t have the staffing to sufficiently get involved with every town on that side of it.” The meeting in Keene, and another one that happened the next day in Hudson, focused on topics including how the pipeline and related infrastructure works, planning for emergencies, mutual aid response to a pipeline community, and future pipeline emergency and safety training should the project be approved, Wheatley said. Officials from the New Hampshire towns along the proposed pipeline route and those that provide mutual aid to those communities were invited to attend the meetings, he said. “Tennessee Gas will continue this communication effort with all towns along the Project route,” he said. “Safety is always paramount to Tennessee Gas and its parent company Kinder Morgan.” Rindge Fire Chief Rick Donovan said he and other town officials have enough information to begin planning for the pipeline, but there are still some questions he doesn’t have answers to — including the exact location of the route — and he doesn’t expect he’ll have them until FERC approves the project. “To be honest, I’d like to see the information as soon as possible like everybody else,” he said. He’d especially like to see that information before construction starts, if the project is approved, he said. “I don’t think that is unreasonable to ask.” Kellom agreed, saying there hasn’t been a lot of opportunity yet to pre-plan for the pipeline, and he’d like to be prepared before the pipeline goes through, if it’s approved. “We’ve never seen anything to this scale,” he said, noting that the biggest project his department has had to plan for to-date is an asphalt plan in town that runs on compressed natural gas brought in by truck. Carney said access to training, the frequency of that training, and having the proper equipment, including the gas meters, are her top concerns. Both she, one of her officers, and Donovan attended some pipeline incident training put on by the state last spring, and she expects more training for herself and other firefighters to follow, she said. If there were a pipeline emergency in Fitzwilliam, there is no doubt her fire department would call in the surrounding communities to help, but she wonders how far out she would have to go, especially if she needed more gas meters, she said. And if another town along the route is facing a pipeline emergency at the same time, it would be worse in a situation where time is of the essence, she said. There is rationale for her concern. Her department was one of 64 fire and emergency medical services agencies to respond to Keene to deal with a city-wide gas problem in December 2015. Part of the reason why so many communities were called in, Carney said, was the city needed more gas meters. ——— ©2016 The Keene Sentinel (Keene, N.H.) Visit The Keene Sentinel (Keene, N.H.) at www.sentinelsource.com Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC. The Rindge Fire Department has four of them, Fitzwilliam has two, and Temple and Winchester each have one. The devices — known as multi-gas detectors or meters — measure levels of combustible gas so firefighters can determine if an area affected by a natural gas or propane leak is safe. The equipment also scans for potentially deadly chemicals, such as carbon monoxide. In these small, rural southwestern New Hampshire towns that don’t have natural gas distribution systems, the fire departments — some on call, others volunteer — can get by with the gas detectors they already have, their fire chiefs say. But if the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline is built, that may change. The fire chiefs are concerned they may need more to protect their residents, particularly if a problem with the high-pressure, natural gas transmission line were to arise. And with that, the question becomes who will pay for additional gas meters: the fire departments, whose annually operating budgets can be blown by repairs to a broken down fire truck or a hazardous waste event, or the North American energy company proposing the approximately $5.2 billion controversial project? Gas meters are just one of other wider concerns area fire chiefs have about the pipeline. At a meeting in Keene last month, fire chiefs and officers asked Kinder Morgan representatives a slew of questions, including who they should contact at the company in the event of a pipeline incident, how long it would take for that person to respond, the company’s plan for addressing various emergency scenarios, and what chemicals from the fracking process would be mixed with the natural gas? “Basically, the answer is if something happens you report it, and someone from the company will be there within the hour,” Fitzwilliam Fire Chief Nancy W. Carney said. “That’s OK, but what happens until then? What do I tell residents living on the other side of the pipeline?” Houston-based Kinder Morgan is the parent company of Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. LLC, which is developing the 419-mile interstate line slated to carry fracked natural gas from the shale fields in northern Pennsylvania to Dracut, Mass. Along the way, it’s proposed to pass through 18 communities in southern New Hampshire, including the Cheshire County towns of Fitzwilliam, Richmond, Rindge, Troy and Winchester. “In reality, if we have a pipeline incident where there is an odor or someone sees discoloration in the ground from a leak, our main job will be to isolate the area, contain what we can contain and evacuate,” Rindge Fire Chief Rickard J. Donovan said Sunday. But to do so, firefighters must know how much natural gas they’re dealing with and over how large an area, he said. His understanding, he said, is that the pipeline will have valves every five to seven miles that can be closed if there is a problem. But that would still leave a lot of area, households and businesses to cover with the department’s gas meters, he said. He’d like to see Rindge get a couple more detectors if the pipeline goes through, but he doesn’t know if Kinder Morgan will provide them, he said. There’s precedent for such a donation in Rindge. Following a suspected Freon leak at the town’s Market Basket in 2013, which sent nine employees to the hospital, the Massachusetts-based company bought the fire department equipment necessary to handle such a leak, Donovan said. Company officials viewed it as a way of protecting their interests and the community’s should such a leak happen again, he said. “I hope Kinder Morgan feels the same way,” he said. The gas meter the Winchester Fire Department uses must be calibrated annually, and that costs about $300 to $400, and puts the device out of service for about a month because it has to be sent out for the work, according to Winchester Fire Chief Barry Kellom. If Kinder Morgan does purchase gas detectors for the fire departments, he’d like to see everyone get the same models, he said. That way, a firefighter from Winchester could operate the Richmond Fire Department’s gas meter if need be, he said. But will Kinder Morgan provide the meters? The question was asked during the meeting in Keene last month with other area fire chiefs, three company representatives and N.H. State Fire Marshal J. William Degnan. Carney, who attended the Feb. 3 meeting, said that the response the Kinder Morgan representatives provided indicated they’d have to find out the answer and get back to them. Temple Deputy Fire Chief Matt L. Bruneau and Kellom, who also attended the meeting, agreed with Carney’s recollection. “They definitely weren’t forthcoming in putting their name on the dotted line to support that,” Bruneau said. He added that New Ipswich Fire Chief Meredith Lund asked the question. Besides the pipeline, New Ipswich is slated to host a 41,000-horsepower compressor station, which would help transport natural gas and keep it properly pressurized. Temple isn’t one of the pipeline towns, but it abuts New Ipswich. Temple Elementary School is roughly a quarter mile from the proposed compressor station. Efforts to reach Lund over the weekend were unsuccessful. When asked by email Thursday if the answer Kinder Morgan representatives provided at the meeting remained the company’s response, Northeast Energy Direct project spokesman Richard N. Wheatley didn’t reply directly to the question. He said Tennessee Gas Pipeline has, and continues to address public and agency concerns. “In addition to assessing future emergency responder training needs, Tennessee Gas has begun and will continue to discuss concerns such as manpower, equipment, security measures, and increase of presence patrols with local fire and police departments along the proposed Project route,” he said in the email. Seeking answers In October 2015, Carney submitted two, page-and-a-half lists of questions and comments to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about public safety concerns she and other area fire chiefs have about the pipeline. At the time, the project was in the pre-filing process with the agency. It’s now in the filing process, with Tennessee Gas Pipeline officials asking the commission to approve their application by the fourth quarter of this year so they can begin construction in January 2017. FERC is the sole agency that has the power to approve or deny the project. In her letter, Carney asked about Kinder Morgan’s emergency response plan, both during and after the pipeline’s construction, when her fire department would receive a copy of those plans, and how would emergency responders be able to access roads crossed by the pipeline that only have one way in and out. She also asked if the company would provide and pay for training and equipment for all first responders to handle potential pipeline emergencies, and what security monitoring would be done along the pipeline, according to the letter. “There are still definitely more questions than answers,” Carney said last week. As a fire chief, she needs to be prepared, and that includes identifying hazards and pre-planning for pipeline incidents, she said. “It’s not my position to say whether I’m for or against the pipeline, but I have some concerns,” she said. “The hardest thing for me as fire chief is I want to pre-plan, but I’m not getting the information, or they keep changing it.” Through the FERC process, some of the questions posed by area fire chiefs have gotten the attention of Tennessee Gas Pipeline officials, who responded to them and others in a filing with the federal agency on March 17. In the document, FERC officials asked company representatives to address certain public safety concerns including local public services, such as police and fire departments, not having the manpower or equipment to respond to pipeline or compressor station emergencies. In response, Project Management Specialist Samuel L. Johnson 2nd wrote that company officials had addressed the concerns throughout the pre-filing process, and would continue to discuss them during the application process. “In the unlikely event of an incident, local emergency officials will be responsible for managing and protecting people (i.e. traffic control, handling injuries),” he wrote. Wheatley said in his email Friday that Tennessee Gas Pipeline officials have begun to coordinate with first responders on how to handle a construction or gas pipeline emergency. “Tennessee Gas has established and maintains liaison with fire, police, and public officials in areas where it currently operates and will establish liaison in those areas where it currently does not have facilities,” he said. He added that company officials have participated in a collaborative effort with the N.H. State Fire Marshal “to proactively address questions by stakeholders” affected by the pipeline. Degnan said last week that the Feb. 3 meeting was held because his office saw gaps in responses from communities outside of Keene during that city’s gas emergency in December 2015. A power outage caused a propane-air distribution system owned by Liberty Utilities in Keene to malfunction, sending pure propane to customers with the potential for carbon monoxide to be release when burned. The fire marshal’s office also used the meeting as an opportunity to provide some preliminary training to those departments about the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline, Degnan said, and he intends for there to be additional meetings and training that will go into more detail. As for getting Kinder Morgan to pay for equipment such as gas meters, and getting the necessary information to pre-plan, it would be up to the communities to talk directly with the company, he said. “We don’t have any role; if a fire chief calls us, we would assist them,” he said. “We don’t have the staffing to sufficiently get involved with every town on that side of it.” The meeting in Keene, and another one that happened the next day in Hudson, focused on topics including how the pipeline and related infrastructure works, planning for emergencies, mutual aid response to a pipeline community, and future pipeline emergency and safety training should the project be approved, Wheatley said. Officials from the New Hampshire towns along the proposed pipeline route and those that provide mutual aid to those communities were invited to attend the meetings, he said. “Tennessee Gas will continue this communication effort with all towns along the Project route,” he said. “Safety is always paramount to Tennessee Gas and its parent company Kinder Morgan.” Rindge Fire Chief Rick Donovan said he and other town officials have enough information to begin planning for the pipeline, but there are still some questions he doesn’t have answers to — including the exact location of the route — and he doesn’t expect he’ll have them until FERC approves the project. “To be honest, I’d like to see the information as soon as possible like everybody else,” he said. He’d especially like to see that information before construction starts, if the project is approved, he said. “I don’t think that is unreasonable to ask.” Kellom agreed, saying there hasn’t been a lot of opportunity yet to pre-plan for the pipeline, and he’d like to be prepared before the pipeline goes through, if it’s approved. “We’ve never seen anything to this scale,” he said, noting that the biggest project his department has had to plan for to-date is an asphalt plan in town that runs on compressed natural gas brought in by truck. Carney said access to training, the frequency of that training, and having the proper equipment, including the gas meters, are her top concerns. Both she, one of her officers, and Donovan attended some pipeline incident training put on by the state last spring, and she expects more training for herself and other firefighters to follow, she said. If there were a pipeline emergency in Fitzwilliam, there is no doubt her fire department would call in the surrounding communities to help, but she wonders how far out she would have to go, especially if she needed more gas meters, she said. And if another town along the route is facing a pipeline emergency at the same time, it would be worse in a situation where time is of the essence, she said. There is rationale for her concern. Her department was one of 64 fire and emergency medical services agencies to respond to Keene to deal with a city-wide gas problem in December 2015. Part of the reason why so many communities were called in, Carney said, was the city needed more gas meters. ——— ©2016 The Keene Sentinel (Keene, N.H.) Visit The Keene Sentinel (Keene, N.H.) at www.sentinelsource.com Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC. The Rindge Fire Department has four of them, Fitzwilliam has two, and Temple and Winchester each have one. The devices — known as multi-gas detectors or meters — measure levels of combustible gas so firefighters can determine if an area affected by a natural gas or propane leak is safe. The equipment also scans for potentially deadly chemicals, such as carbon monoxide. In these small, rural southwestern New Hampshire towns that don’t have natural gas distribution systems, the fire departments — some on call, others volunteer — can get by with the gas detectors they already have, their fire chiefs say. But if the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline is built, that may change. The fire chiefs are concerned they may need more to protect their residents, particularly if a problem with the high-pressure, natural gas transmission line were to arise. And with that, the question becomes who will pay for additional gas meters: the fire departments, whose annually operating budgets can be blown by repairs to a broken down fire truck or a hazardous waste event, or the North American energy company proposing the approximately $5.2 billion controversial project?   [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Feds: Climate change to impact Western water trends
The Hill
Devin Henry

Climate change will hasten existing water supply concerns in the Western United States, the Interior Department concluded in a report released Tuesday. A warming climate is excepted to bring higher temperatures and changes to precipitation, snowpack and water flow throughout the West, the report found. Officials said the threat highlights the need for “collaborative strategies acres each river basin” in the west to protect water supplies there. “One of the greatest challenges we face is dealing with the impacts of climate change on our nation’s water, which is really the lifeblood of our economy,” Interior Deputy Secretary Michael Connor said in a statement. Climate change’s impact on water will vary across regions, the report predicts. Southern California, for example, will see increased water demand and heighten the need for imported or recycled water. Reduced snowpacks in the Colorado River Basin and points south will mean a smaller supply of water for irrigation and hydropower operations.   [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Climate Change: 10 Billion Tons Of Carbon Are Now Being Released Every Year, The Fastest In 66 Million Years
IBT
AVANEESH PANDEY

In another indication of the profound, and perhaps irreversible, change humans are having on the planet, new research has shown that our species is pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere 10 times faster than at any time during the past 66 million years. This means that the last time the rate of carbon emissions was this high, dinosaurs were still walking on the face of Earth. “In studying one of the most dramatic episodes of global change since the end of the age of the dinosaurs, these scientists show that we are currently in uncharted territory in the rate carbon is being released into the atmosphere and oceans,” Candace Major, program director in the National Science Foundation (NSF)’s Division of Ocean Sciences, which funded the research, said in a statement.   [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
The scientist who first warned of climate change says it’s much worse than we thought
Grist
Ameila Urry

The rewards of being right about climate change are bittersweet. James Hansen should know this better than most — he warned of this whole thing before Congress in 1988, when he was director of NASA’s Institute for Space Studies. At the time, the world was experiencing its warmest five-month run since we started recording temperatures 130 years earlier. Hansen said, “It is time to stop waffling so much and say that the evidence is pretty strong that the greenhouse effect is here.” Fast forward 28 years and, while we’re hardly out of the Waffle House yet, we know much more about climate change science. Hansen is still worried that the rest of us aren’t worried enough. Last summer, prior to countries’ United Nations negotiations in Paris, Hansen and 16 collaborators authored a draft paper that suggested we could see at least 10 feet of sea-level rise in as few as 50 years.   [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Sabal Pipeline project files 160 eminent domain lawsuits
Orlando Sentinel
Paul Brinkmann

natural-gas pipeline project for Duke, FPL and Spectra has filed 160 eminent-domain lawsuits in Alabama, Georgia and Florida. The lawsuits seek to seize hundreds of acres from landowners, and more lawsuits may follow. The project, called the Sabal Trail Transmission pipeline, is targeting 25 properties in Central Florida, mostly in Osceola County. The pipeline company began filing the suits in federal court last week.  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
229 leaks found in state's underground gas storage facilities, most considered minor
Los Angeles Times
Paige St. John

Only one of the dozen underground gas storage facilities in California had no leaking gas wells or fixtures, according to tests required by state regulators in the wake of a well blowout in Southern California. The leak reports were filed in mid-February but not released by the California Public Utilities Commission until Tuesday, after most of the identified problems could be fixed. A public statement accompanying the report characterized most of the 229 leaks found as minor, requiring no more action than tightening a valve. Only one was found below ground.   [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
Kinder Morgan pipeline project scorns state constitution, could set precedent
The Berkshire Edge
Heather Bellow

Sandisfield — Deep in the woods in this town of 800 people near the Connecticut border, an energy giant has already made a chess move that might wipe out a large swath of state-protected forest so it can add a 3.8 mile natural gas storage extension loop to a preexisting pipeline route for use in Kinder Morgan’s larger Northeast Extension Direct (NED) project. To accommodate the new pipeline extension this pipeline corridor would be expanded, taking 60 to 100 feet of forest on the left side the cleared path. Photo: Heather Bellow Two pipelines already exist on this path — one was built in 1951, the other in 1980. The problem with this one is that it will require an easement to cut through forest next to the existing route. And not just any forest, but some of Otis State Forest’s 900 acres, protected by the state’s constitution through Article 97, which legislates the powerful notion that citizens have the right to “a clean environment,” and gives the state the ability to buy land to protect it. The state bought these acres for $5.5 million about 10 years ago, the largest land sale in state history, according to Rep. William “Smitty” Pignatelli (D-Lenox).  [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
30 Scientists, 100+ Environmental, Health Groups Urge Federal Government to Maintain Moratorium on Offshore Fracking in California
Yuba Net
Center for Biological Diversity

SAN FRANCISCO, March 22, 2016 - In a letter sent today, more than 30 prominent scientists urged the federal government to continue the moratorium on fracking in federal waters off the California coast and to prepare a comprehensive environmental impact statement for the controversial oil-industry technique.   [Full Story]

Mar 22, 2016
US NATURAL GAS PIPELINE DEVELOPERS FACING CHALLENGING FUTURE
Platts


Developers of US pipeline projects face a host of challenges, many more than in past years, in getting their projects certified and built, Don Santa, the president of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America said Tuesday. The pipeline certificate process, by which the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves new interstate pipelines "is under a lot of pressure," both in the form of legal challenges and from activists who show up at FERC meetings to protest the proceedings, Santa said at the annual Pipeline Opportunity Conference, presented by the Pipeline & Gas Journal. "Activist groups have become very active in these certificate proceedings, in part to set them up to them for an appeal in the courts," he said.  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
How can gas company offset emissions from the Aliso Canyon leak? Regulators offer a plan
Los Angeles Times
Tony Barboza

offset greenhouse gas emissions from the massive Porter Ranch leak, Southern California Gas Co. could pay to plug abandoned wells, install methane-gobbling digesters at dairy farms and help people buy more efficient furnaces and water heaters, state regulators say. Those are the kinds of projects the gas company will be required to fund to make up for the damage to the climate from releasing nearly 100,000 tons of methane from its Aliso Canyon storage facility, according to a plan by the California Air Resources Board.  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
PEC Opposes Killing Conventional Drilling Regs, Clean Power Plan Delay In Fiscal Code
PA Environment Digest


The PA Environmental Council Wednesday sent a letter to all members of the Senate expressing its opposition to provisions House Bill 1327 (Peifer-R-Pike) amends the Fiscal Code to among other things, kill DEP Chapter 78 conventional drilling regulations and make DEP start over, reduce Growing Greener watershed restoration funding by $15 million this fiscal year and to slow consideration of any state plan to comply with the EPA Clean Power Climate Plan.   [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
House Environmental Committee Meets March 23, Possibly To Discuss Drilling Regs
PA Environment Digest


The House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee is scheduled to meet on March 23, however no agenda has yet been posted. At the Committee meeting last Wednesday, Rep. John Maher (R-Allegheny), Majority Chair of the Committee, said the Committee will be reviewing the final DEP Chapter 78 and 78a oil and gas drilling regulations “at its next meeting.”  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Local task force members hope group can bring positive change to gas drilling industry
Citizens Voice
Elizabeth Skrapits

Participating in Gov. Tom Wolf’s Pipeline Infrastructure Task Force taught a local college professor new things, and gave a local residents’ advocate a chance to spotlight safety in Northeastern Pennsylvania’s rural regions.   [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Our View: Halting offshore drilling plan a wise move
Fayette Observer
Opinion

The Obama administration decision to drop plans for oil and gas drilling off our coast is neither a major setback nor a dramatic victory. For both sides of the contentious issue, it's a bump in the road, one more twist in a decades-long tale.   [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Global Shale Gas Market Poised to Surge from USD 63.0 Billion in 2014 to USD 105.0 Billion by 2020 – MarketResearchStore.Com
Econo Times


Deerfield Beach, FL, March 21, 2016 -- Zion Research has released a new report titled “Shale Gas Market by Technology (Horizontal Drilling, Hydraulic Fracturing, and Water Usage Issue) for Power Generation, Residential, Industrial, Commercial, Transportation and Other Applications: Global Industry Perspective, Comprehensive Analysis, and Forecast, 2014-2020.” According to the report, the global demand for shale gas was valued at USD 63 billion in 2014 is expected to reach USD 105 billion in 2020, growing at a CAGR of around 9% between 2015 and 2020. In terms of volume, the global shale gas market stood at around 10.0 trillion cubic feet in 2014.   [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Thousands to Gather in New Orleans to Stop New Oil and Gas Leases in the Gulf
EcoWatch
Janet MacGillivray & Lee Ziesche

While the community is still recovering from this state of emergency, Obama’s BLM is sticking to plans to auction off 43 million acres of federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico for offshore drilling leases on March 23. These oil and gas leases contain the eighth largest source of carbon pollution on our planet.   [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
County Commission to review fracking laws for area
Northest Georgia News
Blake Doss

Manager Jamie McCord plans to clarify the county’s fracking laws during Tuesday’s County Commission meeting, following a barrage of emails to county officials from concerned residents. Buckeye Exploration is seeking to acquire mineral rights from property owners in northern Floyd County in the hopes of finding gas or oil.   [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Frontera plans key Georgia fracking campaign
Energy Voice
Phil allan

Oil and gas exploration company Frontera Resources is set to carry out a crucial frack campaign ahead of the large scale exploitation of Georgia’s South Kakheti gas complex’s Oil Window initiative.  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Schlumberger chief: Oil services crisis isn’t just oil prices
FuelFix
Robert Grattan

HOUSTON — The oil service industry needs a fundamental shift in the way it approaches working with exploration and production companies if it’s to thrive again, the CEO of Schlumberger warned Monday. Both services companies and their clients are being held back by an outdated business model that has disconnected service companies from their producer, stifled technological innovation and done little to hold down costs, said Paal Kibsgaard, who holds the top job at Schlumberger. “Our industry has simply not progressed sufficiently in terms of total system performance to enable cost-effective development of increasingly complex hydrocarbon resources,” Kibsgaard said. Kibsgaard spoke at the Scotia Howard Weil conference in New Orleans, and a transcript was provided to Fuelfix.com.  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Oil Company Taps IBM's Watson To Fend Off Anti-Fracking Attacks On Twitter
Forbes
Christopher Helman

Leave it to IBM to use artificial intelligence to reverse-engineer authenticity. Last year a big American oil company felt bad because it was getting picked on by anti-fracking activists who were hurling insults on Twitter TWTR +0.24%. The oil company wanted to do something, anything, to stop those misguided fracktivists who were only propagating long disproven fracking propaganda. But first the oil company had to figure out how to work this Twitter thing. They noticed that some tweets spread virally, get retweeted all over the place. While other tweets saying pretty much the same thing just fall flat. ¯\_(?)_/¯ The oil company wanted to fight back at fracking detractors by interacting with them on Twitter, by pointing out the error of their anti-fracking screeds, by trying to find ways to convince them that fracking is a safe and reliable part of standard oil and gas drilling and has been in use across America for more than 50 years. But that was kind of a bad idea.  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
The Air Around Aliso Canyon Is Declared Safe. So Why Are Families Still Suffering?
InsideClimate News
Phil McKenna

Residents returning home a month after gas leak ends report lingering illnesses as SoCal Gas prepares to cut off relocation housing payments this week  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
Momentum Builds Against Obama Admin Plans To Auction Oil and Gas Drilling Rights In Gulf of Mexico
DeSmogBlog
Julie Dermansky

Hundreds of Gulf Coast residents are expected to join a coalition of environmental and social justice groups on Wednesday to protest outside the Superdome, where the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) intends to auction off leases for offshore oil and gas drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. Forty-seven organizations sent a letter to President Obama last week calling for him to cancel the planned lease auctions that would release millions of acres in the Gulf of Mexico for oil and gas drilling. The sales include 43 million acres set to be auctioned on Wednesday, and another 47 million acres proposed for auction in 2017. Only two people spoke at BOEM’s public hearing in New Orleans on March 17 on the bureau's proposed plan to offer 47.41 million acres to the oil and gas industry to lease in the Central Planning Area of the Gulf of Mexico in 2017.  [Full Story]

Mar 21, 2016
The Air Around Aliso Canyon Is Declared Safe. So Why Are Families Still Suffering?
Inside Climate News
Phil McKenna

Residents returning home a month after gas leak ends report lingering illnesses as SoCal Gas prepares to cut off relocation housing payments this week.   [Full Story]

Mar 20, 2016
Pro-fracking writer ignored essential dangers of drilling: Tish O'Dell, Mothers Against Drilling in Our Neighborhoods
Cleveland.com
Tish O'Dell Opinion

Industry lobbyists representing one of the wealthiest industries on the planet use every form of media available to propagandize: millions of dollars spent on TV and radio advertising, the purchase of elected officials through campaign contributions who speak on their behalf, full color glossy mailers and print advertisements – and, of course, print media. All to convince us – we, the people – that shale gas drilling and fracking is environmentally safe and an economic benefit for all.   [Full Story]

Mar 20, 2016
Bill sets firm 6-month window to collect ballot signatures
Elkhart Truth
David Eggert

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan lawmakers are pushing to require that all signatures for a statewide ballot initiative be collected within a six-month period, a move that would stymie marijuana and anti-fracking activists from potentially receiving more time thanks to improved technology.   [Full Story]

Mar 20, 2016
Fractured Land Review Documentary Takes A Close Look Into Fracking And Its Effect On First Nations Communities
Link
Amy Halloran

Tomorrow, students will have the opportunity to peer into the devastating world of fracking from a unique and telling perspective.   [Full Story]

Mar 19, 2016
Environmental Activists Take to Local Protests for Global Results
The New York Times
John Schwartz

READING, N.Y. — They came here to get arrested. Nearly 60 protesters blocked the driveway of a storage plant for natural gas on March 7. Its owners want to expand the facility, which the opponents say would endanger nearby Seneca Lake. But their concerns were global, as well. “There’s a climate emergency happening,” one of the protesters, Coby Schultz, said. “It’s a life-or-death struggle.”  [Full Story]

Mar 19, 2016
Can the U.S. really go frack-free? Sanders, Clinton take aim at hydraulic fracturing
San Diego Union-Tribune
Rob Nikolewski

Earlier this month, both candidates for the Democratic Party nomination for president took shots at "fracking" — hydraulic fracturing, the process that extracts oil and natural gas by using high-pressure liquids to break through shale rock formations.   [Full Story]

Mar 19, 2016
SUE THE FRACKERS ! $4.2 Million Fracking Verdict Sparks More Suits
NO FRACKING WAY
Peter Hayes

From Toxics Law Reporter March 14 — A recent jury verdict and $4.2 million award in favor of two Pennsylvania families who alleged fracking operations contaminated their well water is likely to trigger the filing of more suits, sources tell Bloomberg BNA. A jury March 10 found Cabot Oil & Gas acted negligently in drilling fracking wells in Dimock, Pa., which created a private nuisance and significantly harmed the plaintiffs in their use and enjoyment of the property. A number of other families involved in the litigation settled before trial for a total amount less than what was awarded here.   [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
Activist group plans 'rebellion against FERC' for fossil fuel work
SNL
Sean Sullivan

When it comes to stopping the permitting of natural gas pipelines and LNG terminals, some groups feel driven to drastic action. "The rebellion against FERC is one aimed at radically transforming how energy is produced, transported and used in this country," Beyond Extreme Energy organizer Lee Stewart said. Many groups that oppose fossil fuels in the U.S. to protect the environment and communities conduct their fight under rules laid down by FERC and federal law, challenging gas infrastructure in the commission's review process for energy projects and afterward in federal court. But Beyond Extreme Energy and allied groups have said the rules do not work for opposition groups. Turning to other methods, they have shouted at FERC meetings and organized a February campaign that delivered anti-gas messages to the homes of FERC commissioners. And they plan to increase such activities. Beyond Extreme Energy sees no penalty for breaking the rules if it is done without violence.  [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
During Porter Ranch, stealthy oil workers hid another methane gas leak
SCPR


In the midst of the much bigger Porter Ranch gas leak, another natural gas leak was spewing methane into the air. The oil company responsible for the second leak has been fined $75,000 by state oil regulators. The Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal called the methane leak brazen and intentional violations of state law. Workers for The Termo Company had snaked a 2.5-inch pipe away from oil pumping equipment to hide its opening under a tree some distance away. The pipe was used to vent natural gas that was produced along with oil.  [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
Peekskill’s Nancy Vann needed wheelchair after being dragged out of FERC meeting
The Peekskill Post
BRYAN FUMAGALLI

Peekskill resident Nancy Vann left the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Building in Washington, D.C. in a wheelchair on Thursday after she was knocked down and forcibly removed by security personnel while attempting to speak at a public meeting of the FERC Board of Commissioners. Vann was in Washington with a group of area residents trying to get answers as to why the government agency has not granted Gov. Cuomo’s request to temporarily halt construction of Spectra Energy’s Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) pipeline project while state agencies conduct an independent safety assessment of the pipeline and its proximity to Indian Point Energy Center.  [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
Morning Agenda: TransCanada to Buy Columbia Pipeline Group
New York Times
Amie Tsang

TRANSCANADA TO BUY COLUMBIA PIPELINE GROUP | TransCanada will buy the Columbia Pipeline Group for $10.2 billion after failing to obtain approval for its Keystone XL oil sands pipeline, Ian Austen reports in DealBook.  [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
Landmark Acidization Study Finds Oil Companies Using Dozens of Hazardous Chemicals in California Wells
Center for Biological Diversity
Press Release

LOS ANGELES— Oil companies use dozens of extremely hazardous chemicals to acidize wells in California, raising water contamination and public-safety concerns, according to a new study in the Journal of Toxicological and Environmental Chemistry. San Ardo oil field The University of California-Los Angeles study, which has national significance because it seems to be the first ever to examine the toxicity of acidization chemicals, finds that almost 200 different chemicals have been used in the process, which is frequently employed in urban areas of Los Angeles County.  [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
Pipeline lawsuit called ‘aggressive,’ precedent-setting
The Recorder
Richie Davis

With the state attorney general expected to weigh in on a pipeline lawsuit challenging the Massachusetts Constitution’s protection of conservation lands, area officials are calling for a vigorous defense of open space. Pointing to Tennessee Gas. Pipeline Co.’s suit against the state over a proposed natural gas pipeline through state-protected forest in Sandisfield, state Rep. Stephen Kulik said Friday he plans to call for the Massachusetts House to file a “friend of the court” brief in the case. He said the constitutional provision, called Article 97, will also likely come into play in the controversial Northeast Energy Direct pipeline through eight Franklin County towns. The pipeline company asserts that its Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approval for its Berkshire County route supercedes the state’s constitutional protection of conservation land there.  [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
Teachout Calls For Economic Impact Study Of Pipeline
State of Politics


Democratic congressional candidate Zephyr Teachout on Friday released a letter to state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli calling for a review of the economic impact of the proposed Constitution pipeline. “Given the high stakes for the State and its residents, the Office of the State Comptroller should review the project with an eye toward assessing the net economic impact of the project,” she wrote in the letter. The pipeline, 100 miles of which will cut through New York and the Hudson Valley, has raised concerns from residents and environmental groups.  [Full Story]

Mar 18, 2016
A Tale of Two Leaks: Fixed in California, Ignored in Alabama
InsideClimate News
Neela Banerjee

EIGHT MILE, Ala.—Willa Vassar brought a small purple box into her living room and emptied it onto her coffee table. She set out a series of ointments, a white tube of Soolantra, one of Tazorac, a tube of Elidel, and an assortment of pills, all to treat an angry rash that has spread across her face. Lithe and dressed in a black warmup suit, the retiree said she never had rashes before moving to the High Point apartments.  [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Sandisfield spur: TNG wants court's OK to start cutting trees for pipeline Rep. Pignatelli assails Kinder Morgan's 'total disrespect,' FERC's 'total disregard' for Sandisfield
The Berkshire Eagle
Clarence Fanto

As a court confrontation looms between a Kinder Morgan affiliate and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, a state lawmaker has issued a sharp denunciation of the energy infrastructure company's actions and the federal regulators who approved the 3.8-mile Tennessee Gas Co. pipeline spur through Otis State Forest in Sandisfield this week. Several rapid-fire developments on Thursday included Kinder Morgan's Tennessee Gas Co. filing an injunction in Berkshire Superior Court seeking to grant the company immediate access to the state-protected land so tree-cutting can begin promptly. In connection with the Endangered Species Act, federal guidelines limit tree-clearing to a period between Oct. 1 and March 31. The company aims to put the pipeline into service next winter.  [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Explosive history prompts pipeline safety proposal to address gaps in oversight
The Patriot News
Associated Press

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — U.S. officials moved Thursday to strengthen safety rules for the nation's 300,000-mile network of natural gas transmission pipelines in response to numerous fiery accidents, including a 2010 California explosion that killed eight people and injured more than 50. The Department of Transportation proposal would expand inspection and repair rules to include lines in some rural areas and newly installed lines in burgeoning gas drilling fields. Pressure-testing for leaks would be required on older lines that were previously exempt, such as the Pacific Gas and Electric Company pipe constructed in 1956 that broke and torched a residential neighborhood in San Bruno, California, six years ago.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Canaport Conversion to LNG Exports Scuttled by Market
Natural Gas Intelligence
Gordon Jaremko

Deterioration of hopes for liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports from Canada on a large scale has spread from the Pacific to the Atlantic coast. Repsol Energy Canada and Irving Oil have put on hold their plan -- called Saint John LNG -- to convert their Canaport import site in New Brunswick into an export terminal. Saint John LNG is the third Canadian casualty of global gas price deterioration this year. The first two were export projects on the Pacific Coast.  [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
US LNG exports unlikely to compete in Europe
Interfax Energy
Peter Stewart

Europe has often been touted as a natural home for American LNG given the EU’s concerns about energy security and its dependence on pipeline flows from Russia. However, the fall in oil and gas prices has made US LNG unattractive to European buyers. Significantly, the first cargo from Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass plant was sold to Brazil, and future shipments look set to head to Turkey, South America, the Middle East and Asia. When global oil and gas prices were high, Henry Hub-based pricing had a clear competitive edge over oil-indexed LNG in Europe and Asia – hence the push from large consumers such as Japan and South Korea to diversify their purchasing strategies away from oil indexation towards gas-on-gas pricing.  [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Methane Emissions Are Spiking, But It Might Be More Cow Than Car
Think Progress
Natasha Geiing

Since 2006, atmospheric levels of methane — a greenhouse gas 86 times more potent than carbon dioxide over a 20-year period — have steadily been on the rise. For years, scientists weren’t sure what was behind the rising levels of methane, but they had a few ideas: namely an increase in fossil fuel-related emissions. Now, a new study is pointing to a different culprit: agriculture-related methane emissions, especially from livestock and rice production.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
TransCanada to Buy Columbia Pipeline Group in $10.2 Billion Deal
New York Times
Ian Austen

TORONTO — After failing to obtain approval for its Keystone XL oil sands pipeline, TransCanada said on Thursday that it would buy the Columbia Pipeline Group for $10.2 billion. The all-cash deal will make the Canadian company a major force in the distribution of natural gas produced in the northeastern United States through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Fracking review: Companies not required to negotiate land access under WA Government reform
ABC
Sarah Tallier

Oil and gas companies that want to carry out fracking on West Australian land will not be obliged to negotiate with landowners, despite recommendations to Government to make it mandatory.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Colorado House Advances Fracking-Quake Bill
CBS Denver
Joseph Salazar

DENVER (AP) – A bill enabling Coloradans to sue oil and gas drilling firms whose operations damage property or harm people has advanced in the Democrat-led state House. Specifically, the bill would hold energy companies liable if their operations cause damaging earthquakes.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Fracking ballot initiative gets state OK for petition drive
News & Observer
Associated Press

DENVER Backers of a proposal that would let local governments regulate or ban fracking have won approval to circulate petitions to put it before voters.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Fayette alters fracking ban ordinance to strengthen its legality
Register-Herald
Sarah Plummer

FAYETTEVILLE — Fayette County Commission moved forward Monday with its countywide ban on the storage, disposal or use of oil and natural gas waste to strengthen the ordinance from legal scrutiny.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Photograph by Bryan Schutmaat for Bloomberg Businessweek Boom Times for Fracking's Toxic Wastewater Come to a Shaky End
Newsweek
Matthew Phillips

In 2010, as fracking was taking off in Oklahoma, Jeff Andrews, a former oil rig manager and drilling consultant, had an idea for how to cash in on the boom. Rather than drill a well that would produce oil, Andrews decided to drill one that could be used to dispose of all the salty, toxic waste?water that comes up with it. At the time, it seemed like a sure bet. For every barrel of oil produced in Oklahoma, drillers produce an average of about 10 barrels of wastewater. While other states tend to treat and recycle their oil and gas wastewater, Oklahoma has a long history of shooting it back down a hole in the ground—and forgetting about it. By mid-2014, oil production in Oklahoma had jumped to 300,000 barrels a day. That summer, Andrews was injecting about 9,000 barrels of wastewater down his disposal well daily—and charging about 75¢ a barrel. He and his partners were on their way to recouping the $3.2?million they’d invested in the business. But there was one rather large problem looming on the horizon: Oklahoma was fast becoming the earthquake capital of the U.S., and scientists were starting to connect wastewater wells to the state’s sharp rise in seismic activity.  [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Dear President Obama: The Clean Energy Revolution is Now
Huffington Post
Mark Ruffalo & Jon Bowermaster

A few short blocks from the White House, our new film Dear President Obama: The Clean Energy Revolution is Now (directed by Jon Bowermaster, narrated and produced by Mark Ruffalo) will premiere this week at National Geographic’s headquarters as part of the 24th Annual Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital. At issue: President Obama’s environmental tenure and legacy, which has included both substantial steps forward and backward. He enacted the automobile fuel efficiency standard, has invested in renewable energy like solar and wind, has taken a strong stance against climate deniers and saw through the Paris climate agreement. At the same time, he oversaw a massive expansion of oil and natural gas drilling, much of it by more and more dangerous and extreme methods, chiefly fracking.  [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Idaho oil and gas industry advocacy group blows up
Idaho Statesman
ROCKY BARKER

The Idaho Petroleum Council. an independent voice for Idaho's infant oil and gas industry, disintegrated this month after the representative of Alta Mesa Idaho, the sole producer of natural gas in the state, demanded its respected executive director step down. Suzanne Budge, executive director of the organization she’s led for five years, resigned March 4, a day after Alta Mesa chief counsel John Pieserich e-mailed members of the council’s executive committee demanding her dismissal. At the same time Petroleum Council President Scott Madison, executive vice president and general manager of Intermountain Gas, and Petroleum Council Vice President Paul Powell, president of Utah oil- and gas-drilling company Petrogyth Energy, also resigned. Other local companies have left since.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Anti-fracking campaigners celebrate small victory
The Press
Alex ross

ANTI-FRACKING campaigners have secured a small victory in their bid to stop controversial drilling in Ryedale. Ryedale District Council's planning committee met on Tuesday evening to discuss an application to frack in Kirby Misperton and voted against Third Energy's application.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Company that carried out shale gas exploration closes New Brunswick office
The Province


MONCTON, N.B. - The company that carried out shale gas exploration in New Brunswick has closed its office in the province. In an emailed statement, SWN Resources says the move comes amid uncertainty about the timetable for developing the shale gas industry in the province.   [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Fracking Now Responsible For Half Of US Oil Output
Manufacturing.net
Andy Szal

U.S. energy officials estimate that fracking accounts for a majority of the nation's crude oil output for the first time.  [Full Story]

Mar 17, 2016
Boom Times for Fracking's Toxic Wastewater Come to a Shaky End Regulations to reduce fracking-related earthquakes in Oklahoma are wrecking disposal businesses.
Bloomberg Businesss
Matthew Philips

In 2010, as fracking was taking off in Oklahoma, Jeff Andrews, a former oil rig manager and drilling consultant, had an idea for how to cash in on the boom. Rather than drill a well that would produce oil, Andrews decided to drill one that could be used to dispose of all the salty, toxic waste?water that comes up with it.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Environmentalists Say Fracking Fight Isn’t Over
Capitol News Service
Matt Galka

Environmentalists fought tooth and nail this year against the controversial procedure known as Fracking, and as Matt Galka tells us, they won, for now. Anti-fracking groups became a familiar site at Florida’s Capitol for the past two months. Armed with what they said was contaminated water from other states – the advocates against the controversial practice railed against proposals to regulate it statewide.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Dimock Water Contamination Verdict Prompts Calls for Federal Action on Fracking
DeSmog Blog
Sharon Kelly

Last week, in a historic verdict, a Pennsylvania jury awarded $4.24 million to two families in Dimock, PA who sued a shale gas driller, Cabot Oil and Gas Corp., over negligent drilling that contaminated their drinking water supplies.  [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Carson introduces a ban on fracking, acidizing of oil wells
Daily Breeze
Sandy Mazza

Two years after first considering a ban on aggressive oil well-stimulation methods, Carson has introduced a prohibition on fracking, acidizing and similar operations and will add further oil industry restrictions next month.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Brevard County approves controversial ban on fracking Brevard County approves ban on fracking
Click Orlando
Veronica Brezina

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. - Brevard County commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to ban fracking in the county, News 6 partner Florida Today reported.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Fracking 'would ruin tranquil fields', inquiry hears
BBC News


Shale gas extraction would turn "tranquil fields"' into "industrial installations", anti-fracking campaigners have told a hearing. Energy firm Cuadrilla is appealing against Lancashire County Council's decision to refuse permission to extract shale gas at sites in Roseacre Wood and Little Plumpton.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Fracking Out to Pasture
Munchies
Alex Swerdloff

If you think the United States government protects the food supply raised and harvested near sites of hydraulic fracking—the fracturing process through which oil and natural gas is extracted from deep within shale rock deposits—think again. In 2009, Michelle Bamberger, a veterinarian, and Professor Robert Oswald, of Cornell’s College of Veterinary Medicine, became worried about this lack of oversight, and their 2012 report confirmed that their concern was warranted.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
$4.2 Million Fracking Verdict Likely to Spark More Suits
Bloomberg BNA
Peter Hayes

March 14 — A recent jury verdict and $4.2 million award in favor of two Pennsylvania families who alleged fracking operations contaminated their well water is likely to trigger the filing of more suits, sources tell Bloomberg BNA.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Obama Administration Cancels Plans For Atlantic Oil & Gas Drilling
Clean Technica
Joshua S Hill

The Obama administration announced this week that the United States would abandon its plans for oil and gas drilling in Atlantic waters, due to strong opposition.  [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Environmentalists continue fighting fracking
News 4 Jax
Matt Galka

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Environmentalists fought tooth and nail this year against the controversial procedure known as fracking. Environmentalists said fracking is too risky for the state because of the possibility that chemicals can get into Florida’s drinking water.  [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
World’s Largest Mangrove Forest In Danger As Huge Coal Plant Comes To Bangladesh
Climate Progress
Katie Valentine

The Sundarbans, as the world’s largest mangrove forest, is home to more than 300 species of plants, 200 species of fish, 315 species of birds and 49 species of mammals. And soon, the World Heritage site will sit just over eight miles south from two huge coal plants — planned developments that many worry will damage the air and water quality of the forest and destroy the livelihoods of the thousands in Bangladesh and India. If environmental and human rights protesters have anything to do with it, however, that won’t happen. Last week, hundreds of activists marched more than 150 miles from the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka to the southwestern Bagerhat District, a four-day protest that ended over the weekend. The protesters called on the government to halt plans for the 1,320-megawatt Rampal coal plant and the 565-megawatt Orion coal plant, both planned for Bangladesh. The larger Rampal plant, which would take up more than 1,800 acres of land, is scheduled to go online in 2021.   [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Environment In North Dakota’s Booming Oil Patch, One Tribe Beat Back Fracking
Alternet
Sarah van Gelder

The Turtle Mountain Band was among the first tribes to ban the drilling process. Here’s the difference it made. Drive the long, straight roads of north-central North Dakota, and you pass lake after lake amid hayfields and forests. Migratory birds, attracted by the abundance of water and grain, pause here. Farmers, boaters, and fishermen orient their lives around the pure water. The water, more than anything, explains why members of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians acted so quickly when they learned their region was next in line for fracking. Within just a few weeks of tribal women meeting on the topic in late 2011, the council banned fracking on the 77,000-acre reservation. Their ban was one of the first in North America. The process started in November 2011 when a tribal elder, Carol Davis, called the women of the tribe together. Fracking was booming on the Fort Berthold reservation just 190 miles away in the heart of the Bakken oil fields. Davis had heard that the Turtle Mountain reservation could be next. In the tribe’s tradition, women are responsible for protecting the water, so she invited the women to discuss fracking over a meal. After Davis explained her concerns to the group of women, Monette and her half-sister, Cedar Gillette, decided they needed to learn more about the process behind hydraulic fracturing or fracking.When she first heard about fracking in Fort Berthold, Christa Monnette, a member of the Turtle Mountain Tribe, thought that an oil and gas boom on her remote reservation would be a good thing. “I remember thinking, ‘Wow, how lucky they are! How come we can’t strike oil here?’”  [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
World Water Day Reminds Us Not to Take Clean Water for Granted
EcoWatch
Dr David Suzuki

dsuzukiEarth’s oceans, lakes, rivers and streams are its circulatory system, providing life’s essentials for people, animals and ecosystems. Canada has one-fifth of the world’s freshwater, a quarter of its remaining wetlands and its longest coastline. With this abundance, it’s easy to take water for granted. Many of our daily rituals require its life-giving force. Yet do we recognize our good fortune in having clean, safe water at the turn of a tap? Not everyone in Canada is so lucky. On any given day, more than 1,000 boil-water advisories are in place across the country. Imagine having to walk to your local church every morning to fill plastic jugs with clean drinking water for your family. Or having to drive to your town’s fire station or community center to collect bottled water. Imagine having to boil water for everything you do at home—cooking, cleaning, washing. This is the sad reality for people who live in communities with boil-water advisories, some for decades at a time.  [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
Renewables surge helps suppress CO2 emissions growth for second year - IEA
PV Tech
Ben Willis

The global surge in renewable energy deployment has been credited for greenhouse gas emissions remaining flat for the second year running, according to the International Energy Agency. The organisation said the figures suggested that the decoupling of global emissions and economic growth – a key objective in efforts to tackle climate change – was beginning to become a discernable trend. “The new figures confirm last year’s surprising but welcome news: we now have seen two straight years of greenhouse gas emissions decoupling from economic growth,” said IEA executive director Fatih Birol. “Coming just a few months after the landmark COP21 agreement in Paris, this is yet another boost to the global fight against climate change.” According to IEA data, global emissions of carbon dioxide stood at 32.1 billion tonnes in 2015, having remained essentially flat since 2013. The agency said that electricity generated by renewables played a “critical” role, having accounted for around 90% of new electricity generation in 2015. Alongside the stalled rise in greenhouse gas emissions, the global economy continued to grow by more than 3%, offering further evidence that the link between economic growth and emissions growth is weakening, the IEA claimed.  [Full Story]

Mar 16, 2016
FLINT CRISIS: Panel issues emails showing EPA reluctance to confront state
E&E Publishing
Tiffany Stecker

U.S. EPA's Region 5 office tiptoed around Michigan's environmental agency to avoid conflict on the lead contamination issue in Flint, Mich., even questioning whether to issue a violation for failing to prevent corrosion to the city's lead pipes, emails show. Documents released by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee yesterday show an agency that seemed more intent on maintaining a relationship with the state than enforcing environmental law. As EPA employees began to realize in the summer of 2015 that Flint's public drinking water was not treated to reduce corrosion before coursing through the city's network of pipes and into homes, they discussed in an email chain how to address "this situation in Flint." "I'll bet that the State will take this personally since they are responsible for the City of Flint's actions; which isn't a bad thing, but they may get VERY defensive," wrote Jennifer Crooks, Michigan program manager in Region 5's groundwater and drinking water division, in a July 9 email. "We need to move forward and work with the State as our partner ... I don't see the benefit in rubbing their nose in the fact that we're right, and they're wrong." Crooks added that she saw little use in requiring the state to issue a "Treatment Technique" -- or TT -- violation, which occurs when a water system fails to treat its water in the way that EPA prescribes. "If the State/City agree to issue public education on how citizens must properly flush their taps, I'm wondering what the benefit would be to force the State to issue a TT violation to Flint," wrote Crooks. Janet Kuefler, program leader for the drinking water division, agreed. "I think focusing on what the system and local health department ... or [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] can do in the short term to assess the extent of the issue and offer remediation options that can be quickly implemented, if needed, is a sound approach," she wrote. The sore thumb in the conversation was Region 5 regulations manager Miguel Del Toral, who wrote a well-publicized memo last year to alert his supervisor of alarmingly high lead levels in Flint residents' tap water. "I very much disagree with not issuing a TT violation here," wrote Del Toral. "If you open this door for Flint ... other systems elsewhere inside/outside [Region 5] are going to want the same treatment."  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
In Shift, Obama Won’t Open Southeast Atlantic Coast to Drilling
New York Times
Coral Davenport

When the Obama administration unveiled a proposal in January 2015 to open the southeastern Atlantic coast to oil and gas drilling for the first time, environmental advocates were shocked and enraged — and the oil industry was delighted.   [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Obama’s offshore drilling plan, mostly a win for environmentalists with a caveat
Grist
Rebecca Leber

The administration released a new version of its five-year plan for offshore drilling on Tuesday, and the most significant change is its reversal on its plan from a year ago to open the mid-Atlantic to offshore development. The Arctic, meanwhile, is still open for business: The new proposal solicits comments on whether to drop Arctic leases entirely or whether to limit them in some areas. But it also still has an option that includes leases in the Chuckhi Sea, Beaufort Sea, and Cook Inlet — much criticized by environmentalists who say a spill anywhere in the Arctic will have devastating effects for the rest of the region. The Gulf will be open for 10 leases. The Interior Department’s plan for offshore drilling essentially sets the course for oil and gas development long after Obama leaves office. Technically it covers a period from 2017 to 2022, but oil and gas exploration offshore can take years to get off the ground, even decades before paying off the cost. Any delay is promising: While presidential candidates could promise to reverse course, in practice, they are unlikely to do so, explained Natural Resources Defense Council’s Beyond Oil Director Franz Matzner. “This administration sets the five-year plan for the next administration,” Matzner said in an email. “The next administration could, in theory, try to undo that, but we have not seen that precedent in the past. Far and away the most secure route for the Obama administration would be to permanently withdraw the Arctic and Atlantic from all future leasing, using his executive authority under [the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act].”  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Florida Republicans Demand Climate Change Solutions Democratic and Republican mayors in the Sunshine State realize something must be done about global warming
Scientific American
Erika Bolstad

Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado's phone started ringing. CNN's Jake Tapper had just used the Republican city leader's question about climate change and sea-level rise in a GOP presidential debate, and the candidates for president were being asked about what might be the greatest threat to jobs, housing and the wider economy of the Sunshine State. "I started answering the phone," Regalado said. "People kept me awake until midnight." Regalado may not have gotten the exact answer he was looking for from fellow Republicans. But on the eve of an election that will shape who goes on to the White House, Regalado was more than pleased that the polarizing topic made it into the national conversation, especially during a debate in his hard-hit state.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Renewable energy jobs fall by 27% in four years
The Guardian
Michael Slezak

More than a quarter of the jobs in the renewable energy industry have disappeared since 2011, with a continued decline in the latest figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The clean energy industry, consumer groups and conservationists all blamed federal government actions, like reviewing the renewable energy target and maintaining the policy of axing the Australian Renewable Energy Agency and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, despite the bills axing them being blocked by the Senate. Dismantling Australian climate policy: a case study in disagreement Ketan Joshi Read more In the most recent data from the 2014-2015 financial year, 5,100 full-time equivalent jobs had gone from the sector since the 2011-2012 financial year, a drop of 27%, leaving 14,020 people working in the industry.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Comptroller: State must improve gas safety oversight
Capital New York
Scott Waldman

ALBANY — The state Department of Public Service must tighten its oversight of gas safety, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli has found in a new audit. The Cuomo administration is too reliant on gas-line operators to self-report mishaps or incidents, and as a result, the state DPS was not properly notified of six gas-related pipeline incidents in 2015 alone, the audit found.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Marcellus downturn causes Baker Hughes to close $40 million Clinton County facility
Penn Live
John Beauge

MACKEYVILLE — The slowdown in Marcellus Shale activity has caused a major supplier of services to the natural gas industry to close the $40 million facility in Clinton County it opened in 2012. The Clinton County Economic Partnership learned late last week Baker Hughes has closed its pressure pumping facility in Lamar Twp., Executive Director Michael Flanagan said Monday. Lack of activity in the Marcellus region, the result of low natural gas prices was among the factors given for the decision to close the facility that has 90,000 square feet under roof and 20 acres of parking, he said. Baker Hughes vehicles fill most of the parking but Flanagan expects them to be moved out. Baker Hughes, a source for years of the number of drilling rigs operating in the United States, bought the 32 acres from the partnership in late 2011 for $2 million. It then spent $40 million the following year to develop the site.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Feds want two-person crews on rail lines Federal agency wants two workers on all trains; industry group objects
Times Union
Dan Freedman

Washington Railroads would be required to deploy two-person crews on all trains to guard against crashes and derailments, according to a proposed rule put out Monday by the Federal Railroad Administration. In promulgating the rule, the FRA cited two accidents in 2013 that the agency said illustrated how crew size affects accident outcome. In one that occurred in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, near the U.S. border with Maine, a lone crew member improperly secured train cars that then rolled down a hill. The ensuing crash and explosion of cars containing oil from North Dakota killed 47, decimated major portions of the town and forced evacuation of 2,000.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Obama to kill off Arctic oil drilling
The Guardianu
Suzanne Goldenberg

The Obama administration is expected to put virtually all of the Arctic and much of the Atlantic off limits for oil and gas drilling until 2022 in a decision that could be announced as early as Tuesday. The decision reverses Barack Obama’s move just last year to open up a vast swathe of the Atlantic coast to drilling – and consolidates the president’s efforts to protect the Arctic and fight climate change during his final months in the White House. The five-year drilling plan, which will be formally announced by the interior department, was expected to block immediate prospects of hunting for oil in the Arctic, according to those familiar with the proposals.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Mark Ruffalo and Colin Firth lead celebrity open letter telling David Cameron to stand up against fracking
Mirror
HAMISH MACKAY

Mark Ruffalo, Colin Firth and Vivienne Westwood are among celebrities to have written an open letter to David Cameron urging him not to allow his government to impose fracking on communities that have already rejected it. Lancashire residents and councillors voted overwhelmingly against planning applications by energy company Cuadrilla to drill for shale gas at two sites last year. But the decision was then taken out of their hands, with Secretary of State for the Department for Communities and Local Government Greg Clark now making the final call following a public inquiry, which ends tomorrow.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Obama rescinds Atlantic coast drilling plan
The Hill
Timothy Cama

President Obama is rescinding his proposal to open the Atlantic Coast to offshore drilling after encountering strong opposition. The Interior Department announced the decision Tuesday, reversing Obama’s previous proposal for 2017–2022 of organizing a single lease sale on the outer continental shelf in the area from Virginia to Georgia. In abandoning the proposal, the department cited the current oil market, with its weak demand and historically low prices, along with local opposition and potential conflicts with commercial and military activity on the East Coast.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
FERC Approves TGP's Northeast-Focused Connecticut Expansion
Natural Gas Intelligence
Joe Fisher

FERC has approved Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. LLC's (TGP) Connecticut Expansion Project, which would expand delivery capability to the Northeast, accessing supply from the Marcellus Shale. The project [CP14-529] would augment the pipeline's existing system in three states (New York, Massachusetts and Connecticut) to expand delivery capability to the northeast by up to 72.1 MMcf/d. Three pipeline loops would be constructed totaling about 13 miles on the pipeline's existing 200 and 300 Lines. Modifications would also be made to an existing compressor station in Hampden County, MA. Appurtenant facilities would also be installed along the mainline loops.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Midstream Investment Continues in the Utica
WKSU
Tim Rudell

Despite the stall in the Utica Shale boom, the nation’s biggest pipeline company is set to begin construction on a half-a-billion dollar transmission system across northern Ohio. Kinder Morgan’s ‘Utopia East’ pipeline would be for ethane, a secondary product of natural gas drilling vital to chemical plants. The 12- inch line is planned to run from Harrison County to a system near Toledo; that would send the ethane on to Canada  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Can federal regulators keep up with the pipeline boom?
WITF
Marie Cusick

(Lebanon) -- As Pennsylvania's natural gas pipeline building boom continues to grow, so does concern among people who live near the lines. Some are skeptical that federal regulators can keep up. Groups opposed to the pipelines hosted a public forum in Lebanon County Monday night. It's an area where two new major lines are proposed to carry gas and natural gas liquids across the state. Eric Friedman drove in from his home near Philadelphia, which is also along the route of a liquids pipeline and was one of about 40 people at the gathering. He's concerned the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (known as PHMSA) is under-staffed. "My understanding of the way PHMSA does their business is they rely almost completely on the operators to self-report data on the number of incidents and about failure investigations and about the damage about the leaks caused by hazardous liquids," he says. A PHMSA spokeswoman at the forum says the agency does perform its own inspections and audits, but does not verify every incident report it receives from pipeline companies.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Hydraulic fracturing accounts for about half of current U.S. crude oil production
EIA


Even though hydraulic fracturing has been in use for more than six decades, it has only recently been used to produce a significant portion of crude oil in the United States. This technique, often used in combination with horizontal drilling, has allowed the United States to increase its oil production faster than at any time in its history. Based on the most recent available data from states, EIA estimates that oil production from hydraulically fractured wells now makes up about half of total U.S. crude oil production. Hydraulic fracturing involves forcing a liquid (primarily water) under high pressure from a wellbore against a rock formation until it fractures. The fracture lengthens as the high-pressure liquid in the wellbore flows into the formation. This injected liquid contains a proppant, or small, solid particles (usually sand or a manmade granular solid of similar size) that fills the expanding fracture. When the injection is stopped and the high pressure is reduced, the formation attempts to settle back into its original configuration, but the proppant keeps the fracture open. This allows hydrocarbons such as crude oil and natural gas to flow from the rock formation back to the wellbore and then to the surface. Using well completion and production data from DrillingInfo and IHS Global Insight, EIA created a profile of oil production in the United States. In 2000, approximately 23,000 hydraulically fractured wells produced 102,000 barrels per day (b/d) of oil in the United States, making up less than 2% of the national total. By 2015, the number of hydraulically fractured wells grew to an estimated 300,000, and production from those wells had grown to more than 4.3 million b/d, making up about 50% of the total oil output of the United States. These results may vary from other sources because of the types of wells included in the analysis and update schedules of source databases.  [Full Story]

Mar 15, 2016
Meet the Koch-affiliated fracker behind Marco Rubio's energy policy
The Ecologist
Zachary Davies Boren

Barring a miracle Marco Rubio is set to be Trumped in the Republican primary tomorrow in Florida, his home state, putting an effective end to his campaign. But it's not for want of support from one of the US's biggest frackers, Devon energy, and its politically active CEO Larry Nichols. And with or without Rubio, Nichols's influence on the red states' energy policy is only going to get bigger.  [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
As NASA releases climate “bombshell”, more questions raised over fracking’s climatic impact
Oil Change International
Andy Rowell

Last week, I blogged about how “nearly every day another record is smashed regarding climate change.” Well another record has just been smashed and we should all sit up and take notice. According to data released by NASA, the temperature record for February has been broken by an “unprecedented” amount. The scientists have found that February was 1.35C warmer than average.  [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Obama Reverses Course on Drilling Off Southeast Coast
The New York Times
CORAL DAVENPORT

The Obama administration is expected to withdraw its plan to permit oil and gas drilling off the southeast Atlantic coast, yielding to an outpouring of opposition from coastal communities from Virginia to Georgia but dashing the hopes and expectations of many of those states’ top leaders. The announcement by the Interior Department, which is seen as surprising, could come as soon as Tuesday, according to a person familiar with the decision who was not authorized to speak on the record because the plan had not been publicly disclosed. The decision represents a reversal of President Obama’s previous offshore drilling plans, and comes as he is trying to build an ambitious environmental legacy. It could also inject the issue into the 2016 presidential campaigns, as Republican candidates vow to expand drilling.  [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Scranton Times: Jury Awards Dimock Couples $4.24M, Finds Cabot Responsible
PA Environment Digest


The Scranton Times reported Thursday a federal jury has awarded two Dimock Township couples just under $4.24 million after finding Cabot Oil & Gas responsible for contaminating their well water.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Susquehanna River Basin Commission Fines Cabot Oil & Gas $11,000
PA Environment Digest


The Susquehanna River Basin Commission Thursday approved a compliance settlement agreement with Cabot Oil & Gas fining the company $11,000 for undertaking projects subject to SRBC approval without that approval. SRBC also approved settlement agreements with the King Valley Golf Course for $10,000 for consumptively using water in excess of SRBC’s regulatory threshold and Aqua Pennsylvania, Inc. for $9,000 for failing to notify SRBC of the change in ownership of the Beech Mountain System.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Auditor General Launches Audit Of PUC’s Administration Of Gas Well Impact Fees
PA Environment Digest


Auditor General Eugene DePasquale Wednesday announced the start of a performance audit of the Public Utility Commission’s administration of the collection and disbursement of the unconventional shale gas well impact fees provided for in Act 13 of 2012.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Offshore drilling proposal expected soon
The Hill
Timothy Cama

The Obama administration is likely to release a new proposal this week to govern offshore oil and natural gas drilling lease sales through 2022. People familiar with the plan said the proposal could be released by the Interior Department as early as Tuesday.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Landowners question need for NEXUS pipeline
Times Reporter
Shane Hoover

The Coalition to Reroute NEXUS has long opposed the plan to build a high-pressure natural gas pipeline through the city of Green and other communities in northern Ohio. Now, the landowner group is contesting the need to build a pipeline at all.  [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
No revenue sharing, no expansion of US offshore drilling: Fuel for Thought
Platts


The clearest indication yet that the Obama administration has little intention of allowing oil and gas exploration off the coast of Virginia is contained in the president’s proposed 2017 budget.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Virginia, Ground Zero in Drilling Debate, to Learn Its Fate Soon
Bloomberg Politics
Jennifer A Dlouhy

From the shores of Savannah, Georgia, to the Beaufort, North Carolina beachfront, coastal communities in conservative southern states have locked arms in opposition to oil and gas drilling in the Atlantic waters lapping their shores.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Apache with Shell eye Egypt for unconventional gas in June Apache and Shell will start drilling the North African country’s first unconventional gas well in a pilot project by the end of March
Gulf News
Bloomberg

CAIRO: Apache Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc plan to start producing unconventional gas from their joint venture in Egypt’s Western Desert by the end of June even as Apache is cutting investment in the nation because of falling oil prices.  [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Pacific coast natural gas pipeline rejection by feds likely little impact on NYS proposals
Times Union
Brian Nearing

Albany A surprise federal rejection of a $7.5 billion natural gas pipeline and export project in the Pacific Northwest gives pipeline opponents in New York little sense that the federal government is moving from its history of routinely approving such energy projects. Friday's decision by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to reject the Jordan Cove project in Oregon is "not a signal" that the commission might take a more critical stance on pipeline proposals in New York, said Maya van Rossum, head of the environmental group Delaware Riverkeeper Network.  [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Group seeks ethics review of top aide to California governor
The News & Observer
JULIET WILLIAMS

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. A former executive of Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. signed an agreement to protect the reputation of the utility as part of a $1 million settlement she reached with PG&E when she left to work as a top aide for the California governor, a consumer group alleged in a complaint filed with the state's political watchdog. The advocacy group Consumer Watchdog said Monday that it has asked the Fair Political Practices Commission to investigate whether Nancy McFadden had a conflict of interest because of her stock holdings in PG&E and the settlement while working as executive secretary to Gov. Jerry Brown. The group says McFadden took the lead for Brown on matters dealing with the Public Utilities Commission while she owned more than $100,000 in PG&E stock. McFadden reported owning stock in PG&E in 2011, 2012 and 2013.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Obama’s Atlantic oil drilling plan takes friendly fire — from the Pentagon
Washingto Post
Darryl Fears

The Obama administration is reworking its plan to open the southern Atlantic Coast to offshore oil exploration because of strong opposition from the Pentagon, which says the activity could hurt military maneuvers and interfere with missile tests the Navy relies on to protect the coast.   [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016
Gov't proposes requiring at least 2-member train crews
AP The Big Story
Joan Lowy

WASHINGTON (AP) — Trains would have to have a minimum of two crew members under rules proposed Monday by federal regulators. The move is partly in response to a deadly 2013 crash in which an unattended oil train caught fire and destroyed much of a town in Canada.  [Full Story]

Mar 14, 2016