A new report released by the London-based Carbon Tracker...
On Thursday, July 3 on the eve of a long Fourth of July holiday weekend, Canadian pipeline company giant Enbridge landed a sweetheart deal: a provision in the 2015 Wisconsin Budget that will serve to expedite permitting for its controversial proposed Line 61 tar sands pipeline expansion project.
Line 61 cuts diagonally across Wisconsin and goes into north-central Illinois, beginning in Superior, Wisconsin and terminating in Flanagan, Illinois. The Wisconsin Gazette refers to the pipeline as the “XXL” pipeline because it is bigger in size and has higher carrying capacity than the more well known tar sands pipeline cousin, TransCanada's Keystone XL, and is “buried beneath every major waterway” in the state.
Revelations that shale gas extraction could lower property values, increase insurance costs, and damage the environment – according to the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ (Defra) report – have served to reinforce the Lancashire County Council’s decision to reject Cuadrilla’s planning application at Preston New Road.
The fracking report was released this week following a lengthy battle and appeal by Greenpeace to the Information Commissioner which ruled at the end of June that Defra must release the report in full. On Wednesday evening ministers complied with the order and quietly sneaked the report out, two days after the Lancashire vote refusing fracking in the area.
“This report gives the lie to the shale lobby and ministers’ claim that there’s no evidence of negative impacts for fracking whilst questioning many of the arguments made in favour of it,” said Daisy Sands, Greenpeace UK energy and climate campaigner. “It’s a complete vindication of Lancashire County Council’s decision to reject Cuadrilla’s bid to frack in the region, and provides other councils with compelling reasons to do the same.”
California regulators released a final environmental review yesterday that found fracking has “significant and unavoidable impacts” — less than a week after they approved nine new offshore frack jobs.
The state’s Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) released its final report on the environmental impacts of extreme oil extraction techniques like fracking and acidization, and found multiple impacts to air quality, public safety and the climate that “cannot be mitigated.”
The U.S. State Department released a batch of 3,000 searchable documents formerly stored on the private hard drive and in a private email account of Democratic Party presidential candidate and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Among them: a fully redacted job description for State Department International Energy Coordinator/Diplomat-At-Large.
David Goldwyn — now a fellow at the Atlantic Council, fellow at the Brookings Institution and head of Goldwyn Global Strategies — would eventually come to assume that role as head of the State Department's Bureau of Energy Resources, a Bureau that premiered under the watch of then-Secretary Clinton.
“Who is the danger here?” Vera Scroggins, an anti-fracking activist based in Susquehanna County asked after reaching an agreement to resolve a case in which she faced criminal charges at the Montrose, Pennsylvania courthouse. “Me or an industry that is contaminating the air and water?”
Scroggins, 64, exited the Montrose courtroom, greeting her supporters after signing an Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (A.R.D.) agreement, a Pennsylvania deal usually offered to first time offenders, covering her six wire-tapping charges.
Those felony charges were leveled against her for an incident that occurred in 2013, when she videotaped an interaction between herself and a lawyer and his secretary denying her anti-fracking group a permit to participate in a local Fourth of July Parade. Although Scroggins believes the charges against her are bogus since she was openly filming, she said she cannot afford the cost of a trial.
The deal will require Scroggins to do community service, pay a fine estimated to be $1500, and to spend a period on probation. A county judge will decide the amount of the fine, the type of service and how long a probation time Scroggins will be on.
“After years of exhaustive research and examination of the science and facts, prohibiting high-volume hydraulic fracturing is the only reasonable alternative.”
Those were the words many activists in New York never expected to hear from Joe Martens, head of the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation, but they were included in a statement released today as New York made the state’s ban on fracking official.
The boomtown has always loomed large in the American imagination, but as it makes a comeback in this age of overabundant US oil and gas production, it’s more timely than ever to examine the real impacts on people and communities of the new oil boom — and the inevitable bust.
Filmmaker Jesse Moss has done just that in his new documentary The Overnighters, which captures the human consequences of the oil boom in Williston, North Dakota.
When EPA’s long-awaited draft assessment on fracking and drinking water supplies was released, the oil and gas industry triumphantly focused on a headline-making sentence: “We did not find evidence of widespread, systemic impacts on drinking water resources in the United States.”
But for fracking’s backers, a sense of victory may prove to be fleeting.
EPA’s draft assessment made one thing clear: fracking has repeatedly contaminated drinking water supplies (a fact that the industry has long aggressively denied).
The evidence establishing that the oil and gas industry is causing earthquakes grew much stronger last week, as two scientific papers clarified exactly how human activity is driving the swarm of quakes that has afflicted Oklahoma for the past six years.
For decades, earthquakes were rare in the central US. Since the 1970’s, two dozen quakes over magnitude 3.0 shook the region in an average year and larger quakes were even more rare.
But since 2009, right when the drilling industry’s wastewater production started spiking, the number of earthquakes has been skyrocketing, with 688 quakes that size hitting the region in 2014 — and 2015 is on track to be even more seismically active.
This means, Oklahoma has been hit by more quakes in the past year and a half than were felt in the entire 36 year-span from 1973 through 2008.