Despite all those videos out there showing a North Texas man lighting his water on fire as it flowed right out of the tap — a development that many blamed on hydraulic fracturing in the Barnett Shale — last year the Environmental Protection Agency concluded that fracking doesn’t pose any serious risk to groundwater.
So it’s really no surprise the EPA’s report on fracking has come under, you know, fire. However, it is a bit of a shock that the most pointed criticism is coming from an arm of the federal regulatory agency itself.
DENVER – When an oil and gas task force meets this week, members are likely to discuss a proposal that would create an independent office aimed at easing tensions between the local communities and energy industry.
Williamsport is a town of 29,000 in Pennsylvania’s upper Susquehanna Valley. When I decided to stop there in the spring of 2012 on the way to upstate New York, I figured it for a place lost in time—a sleepy burg still guided by small-town values (Williamsport hosts the Little League World Series every summer) but with the sad and deserted appearance you’d expect in an area where the main industry, steelmaking, receded from sight in the 1970s.
Colorado has one of the most stringent sets of rules in the country for testing groundwater in and around oil and gas drilling, but that doesn’t mean every question has been settled. That’s why we were pleased to hear details of a pilot program for real-time water-quality monitoring that will provide concerned citizens with more information than ever before. Colorado State University’s effort is being conducted with Noble Energy and several government agencies. It ultimately will have a website that will allow citizens to view the results.
DENVER — Colorado State University water engineers have come up with deep-well sensors, which are inserted in gas and oil wells to monitor any impact hydraulic fracturing may have on water quality. “We know 63 percent of the state’s 2,200 new gas and oil wells drilled in Colorado were drilled in Weld County, which is why we have ten test sites here,” said Dr. Ken Carlson with CSU. “The hope is to give realtime data to anyone with a computer, on any type of impact fracking might have in their community.”
A website that provides real-time information about water quality around oil and natural gas sites in the Denver-Julesburg Basin launched Wednesday, giving regulators, residents and others access to how water may be affected by energy operations. Colorado Water Watch, created by Colorado State University researchers, is a monitoring tool that collects groundwater quality data from oil and natural gas sites. The information then uploads every hour to the CSU-operated website.
Watch the video as our Center’s Director Dr. Ken Carlson joins the debate for the Real News Network.
“You know, slavery had a lot of economic benefits, but it had an ethical problem.” That was anti-fracking activist Weston Wilson on Monday pushing a ban on hydraulic fracturing in Colorado by asserting that oil and gas development is equivalent to slavery.
Colorado State University’s Powerhouse Energy Campus in north Fort Collins celebrated its grand-opening Thursday with an event that drew hundreds of community members, academics, energy experts and Gov. John Hickenlooper.
A lot of people are watching how Colorado balances its history as a center of oil and gas production with the current push at the ballot box to make it harder for energy companies to operate in the state, according to former Gov. Bill Ritter.
A Longmont fracking ban violates state law and should be struck down without trial, attorneys for the oil and gas industry argued in motions filed Friday with the Boulder County District Court.
In the coming months, Coloradans will have the power to vote on the future role of fracking in the state. As a result, Colorado has become a focal point for environmental groups seeking moratoriums and bans on hydraulic fracturing, a.k.a. “fracking,” an oil and gas technology they claim is new, untested, unproven, and a significant risk to health and safety. Contrary to the anti-fracking narrative, fracking has been safely conducted in the state not for years but for decades.
Colorado is preparing to set a new US precedent by becoming the first state to implement strict fracking rules with leak detection requirements to cut down on greenhouse gas methane emissions from the oil and gas industry.
Water is the lifeblood of Colorado’s Weld and Garfield counties, and lately it’s been in short supply. Both of these counties face extremely high stress in terms of water scarcity, and both have seen an intense concentration of the water-intensive hydraulic fracturing (fracking) process.
Is there methane in Weld County’s water?A new study by CSU researchers indicates there is, but it’s not the same methane for which companies are drilling.
Natural gas production is growing faster in Pennsylvania than anywhere else in the country, and its rate of growth far outpaces any other state, according to new government data.
The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission had nine teams on the ground inspecting the flood plains, and assessed 157 wells and 71 tank batteries on Monday. The agency is now tracking 11 notable releases or spills from operations that have been inspected in the last several days, reaching a total of 822 barrels, with amounts for two of the releases unknown.
No president in modern American history has bashed the oil and gas industry more than Barack Obama. And none has benefited from that industry more.
Proving that last sentence is easy. It requires only that we imagine what world oil prices — and the U.S. economy — would look like in the absence of the shale gale, the multi-state surge in domestic oil and gas production of the past few years, as drillers have figured out how to produce vast quantities of methane and liquids from shale deposits.
Too much success is becoming a problem for Marcellus shale drillers.
Shale formations such as the Marcellus are producing so much natural gas that the nation’s gas supply will exceed its demand by 2017, according to research released on Tuesday by Bentek Energy LLC.
In 1988, a song written by the Minneapolis band Information Society, that featured the voice of Leonard Nimoy from Star Trek, reached the # 3 spot on the Billboard Pop charts. The title of the song was “What’s On Your Mind (Pure Energy)”. Appropriately, while this popular dance song was energizing the public, an energy revolution of a different sort was forming, in Texas.
The U.S. Energy Information Agency estimates that there are 750 trillion cubic feet of natural gas reserves under American soil, which could be enough energy for the next 100 years. Having access to this much energy on our own soil creates opportunities that will impact just about everything in our economy. In the not too distant future, we could be considered a major energy exporter, which could mean independence from foreign oil and gas. In addition to being energy independent, this opportunity could be an enormous creator of wealth for our country and could go down in history as a major economic expansion similar to the industrial revolution.
Two teams of researchers will soon begin testing water throughout Weld County to determine what effects or changes, if any, come from oil and gas industry activities. In the end, there may be no question left as to the industry’s effects on water. “I think people really are just concerned about their drinking water and, hopefully, will gain some confidence and reassurance by monitoring,” said Reagan Waskom, director of the Colorado Water Institute at CSU.
Two teams of researchers will soon begin testing water throughout Weld County to determine what effects or changes, if any, come from oil and gas industry activities.
In the end, there may be no question left as to the industry’s effects on water.
“I think people really are just concerned about their drinking water and, hopefully, will gain some confidence and reassurance by monitoring,” said Reagan Waskom, director of the Colorado Water Institute at CSU. “The message here is that there are several comprehensive efforts to determine whether or not we need to be worried about our drinking water.”
Sometimes it seems as if the environmental movement has been left behind by the sheer speed of America’s shale energy revolution. That may be because a resource—natural gas—that environmental groups once saw as part of the solution has become part of the problem, at least as they see it.