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Nature_and_Environment.109

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Gasland

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.1}: ... {wren1111} Mon, 26 Jul 2010 23:39:39 EDT (HTML)

Gasland "http://gaslandthemovie.com/"

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.2}: Colleen Nelson {cole2u} Sat, 25 Sep 2010 23:06:02 EDT (HTML)

"http://gaslandthemovie.com/"

How does hydraulic fracturing work?

Hydraulic fracturing or fracking is a means of natural gas extraction employed in deep natural gas well drilling. Once a well is drilled, millions of gallons of water, sand and proprietary chemicals are injected, under high pressure, into a well. The pressure fractures the shale and props open fissures that enable natural gas to flow more freely out of the well. What is horizontal hydraulic fracturing?

Horizontal hydrofracking is a means of tapping shale deposits containing natural gas that were previously inaccessible by conventional drilling. Vertical hydrofracking is used to extend the life of an existing well once its productivity starts to run out, sort of a last resort. Horizontal fracking differs in that it uses a mixture of 596 chemicals, many of them proprietary, and millions of gallons of water per frack. This water then becomes contaminated and must be cleaned and disposed of. What is the Halliburton Loophole?

In 2005, the Bush/ Cheney Energy Bill exempted natural gas drilling from the Safe Drinking Water Act. It exempts companies from disclosing the chemicals used during hydraulic fracturing. Essentially, the provision took the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) off the job. It is now commonly referred to as the Halliburton Loophole. What is the Safe Drinking Water Act?

In 1974, the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) was passed by Congress to ensure clean drinking water free from both natural and man-made contaminates. What is the FRAC Act?

The FRAC Act (Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness to Chemical Act) is a House bill intended to repeal the Halliburton Loophole and to require the natural gas industry to disclose the chemicals they use. How deep do natural gas wells go?

The average well is up to 8,000 feet deep. The depth of drinking water aquifers is about 1,000 feet. The problems typically stem from poor cement well casings that leak natural gas as well as fracking fluid into water wells. How much water is used during the fracking process?

Generally 1-8 million gallons of water may be used to frack a well. A well may be fracked up to 18 times. What fluids are used in the fracking process?

For each frack, 80-300 tons of chemicals may be used. Presently, the natural gas industry does not have to disclose the chemicals used, but scientists have identified volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene. In what form does the natural gas come out of the well?

The gas comes up wet in produced water and has to be separated from the wastewater on the surface. Only 30-50% of the water is typically recovered from a well. This wastewater can be highly toxic. What is done with the wastewater?

Evaporators evaporate off VOCs and condensate tanks steam off VOCs, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The wastewater is then trucked to water treatment facilities. What is a well's potential to cause air pollution?

As the VOCs are evaporated and come into contact with diesel exhaust from trucks and generators at the well site, ground level ozone is produced. Ozone plumes can travel up to 250 miles.

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.3}: Colleen Nelson {cole2u} Sat, 25 Sep 2010 23:09:39 EDT (HTML)

How it's playing out in my neck of the planet...

"http://www.observer-reporter.com/or/localnews/01-29-2010-Water- Quality-Forum"

Observer-Reporter

Friday, January 29, 2010

1/29/2010 3:32 AM

Forum on water to examine coal, gas production

The Upper Monongahela River Association will hold a water quality forum in February focusing on the impact of coal and natural gas production on water resources and the investigation into the Dunkard Creek fish kill.

The forum will be the 13th sponsored by the organization dealing with water quality issues in the Monongahela River basin.

The 12th forum, which was sponsored jointly by the association and Greene County Conservation District and focused on the September fish kill, was held Dec. 3 in Mt. Morris and drew more than 200 people.

Barry Pallay, forum program director, said one of the issues for next month's meeting again will be Dunkard Creek. State and federal agencies have been invited to attend to share with the public any new data they have obtained since the last meeting, he said.

The discussion also is expected to include an update on the status of other streams with high levels of total dissolved solids. Total dissolved solids have been considered a contributing factor to the growth of the golden algae that is believed to have killed fish and other aquatic life in Dunkard Creek.

The other focus of the forum will be to address the impacts of coal mining and the expected increase in natural gas production on the area's water resources, Pallay said.

"We want to begin examining coal and gas production and the water and waste disposal needs related to it," he said, adding that, if the watershed is going to see an increase in Marcellus gas drilling, it's important to consider what impacts it may have on water resources.

The association began sponsoring its water quality forums in October 2008 in response to reports of problems caused by high levels of total dissolved solids in the Monongahela River, Pallay said.

The forums have helped inform the public on issues surrounding water quality in the Mon River basin and brought together the various state and federal agencies involved in enforcing water quality regulations.

At next month's forum, a speaker is scheduled to attend from the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission, an organization that works to improve water quality in a large portion of the Ohio River basin.

The representative is expected to explain what his organization has done to improve water quality in the Ohio River and the lessons it has learned that could apply to the association's efforts.

"We really need to look at the watershed as an entire system," Pallay said.

This upcoming water quality forum will be held at 6 p.m. Feb. 11 at the Granville, W.Va., Volunteer Fire Department events center, about a mile west of the Star City interchange of Interstate 79.

Agencies invited to attend include the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, Greene County Department of Economic Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, RAIN Network, W.Va. Water Research Institute and W.Va. Geologic and Economic Survey.

In another matter, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Joe Hoeffel will visit the Mt. Morris Community Center at 1 p.m. Saturday to discuss issues related to the Dunkard Creek fish kill.

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.4}: Colleen Nelson {cole2u} Sat, 25 Sep 2010 23:21:39 EDT (HTML)

"Update - thanks to the media attention garnered by Gasland and the fish kill on dunkard creek and NY state's moratorium on drilling in the aquifer that feeds NYC, the public and the government is beginning to wake up to the dangers of unbridled Halliburton Bush Administration corporate carelessness and misconduct per the environment and the People who live where the drilling is happening.

Parts of Colorado are as contaminated in their way as Hiroshima. The deaths and sicknesses and neuropoisoning of entire populations in America where the 'clean energy' gas industry is bullying their way through lax governmental scrutiny and regulation is a story that is beginning to be told.

This is as bad as the thalidomide poisonings, the ddt poisonings, the Union Carbide spills multiplied by how many millions who are affected by the gasses and poisoned waters of drilling. Multiply that by the and reality of the pollution that is being added to our federal clean waters. The water table. The lifeblood of the planet.

I'm so glad the cafe has an environmental forum where these very real issues that in the end affect us all can be discussed.

http://www.observer-reporter.com/or/washnews/09-14-2010-NATURAL-GAS- DRILLING-5"

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.5}: Colleen Nelson {cole2u} Sat, 25 Sep 2010 23:24:58 EDT (HTML)

"http://www.observer-reporter.com/or/washnews/09-14-2010-NATURAL-GAS- DRILLING-5"

Fracking allies, foes face off in N.Y.

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. - Rep. Maurice Hinchey told a federal hearing Monday that the Environmental Protection Agency must regulate hydraulic fracturing, the natural gas extraction process that he said has contaminated water near drilling sites around the country. "There are numerous reports of water contamination related to hydraulic fracturing in states across the country," said Hinchey, D- N.Y. "Despite the fact that EPA is, in many ways, precluded from taking regulatory action in response to these reports, I believe EPA must investigate to understand what is being done - to keep water supplies safe and secure."

The process, also known as fracking, blasts millions of gallons of water mixed with sand and chemicals, some of them carcinogens, deep into the earth to free gas from dense shale deposits. As a gas rush sweeps parts of the vast and lucrative Marcellus Shale region that underlies New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia, environmentalists are concerned for the watershed that provides drinking water for 17 million people from Philadelphia to New York City.

Environmentalists fear the process, which leaves as much as 90 percent of the post-fracking water known as "produced water" deep underground, will irreversibly taint aquifers.

No water supplies have been poisoned by fracking, the petroleum industry says, and the process - which promises lucrative industry profits and thousands of jobs in economically depressed areas - is safe.

"Billions of dollars in economic impact on New York and its citizens is at stake here," said Brad Gill of the Independent Oil and Gas Association, with drilling promising more than 60,000 jobs in New York alone. "The positive impact is staggering, but it doesn't come at the expense of environmental protection."

John Harmon of the New York-New Jersey African American Chamber of Commerce said full development of the Marcellus Shale would create 280,000 jobs over the next 10 years, jobs sorely needed in the black community

"This is not the time to further limit energy job opportunities for those in need," Harmon said

Congress has ordered EPA to conduct a new fracking study, and EPA is considering how broadly to construct it, since the agency's 2004 study that declared the technology safe was widely criticized as flawed. The earlier study had enabled passage of 2005 energy legislation exempting fracking from federal regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act, leaving regulation to individual states.

"The EPA must do all it can to ensure that its scientists and researchers are not influenced by industry or by politics as they were influenced back in 2004," Hinchey said, "so that the public can be assured that this study is being carried out in the public interest."

Hinchey is one of the authors of the so-called FRAC Act in Congress, which would put fracking under EPA regulation.

The petroleum industry is strongly opposed to federal regulation - which it says would be more costly than complying with adequate state rules.

Gill said "strict state regulations" for decades have governed fracking and the industry has "a stellar environmental record" to show for it.

In New York, he said, there are about 14,000 producing natural gas wells, thousands of which were begun by the fracking process. New York has not seen one case of groundwater contamination by fracking fluids, he said.

"A Hollywood actor holding a glass of cloudy water proves nothing except that fear-mongering and emotion will always trump science and logic," he said, taking aim at the recent critical TV documentary "Gasland," by Josh Fox.

The Marcellus rush is barely two years old in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, where thousands of wells have been fracked. Some geologists estimate the Marcellus contains more than 500 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, of which fracking could recover 50 trillion cubic feet - enough to supply the entire East Coast for 50 years. The proximity of the gas stores to the large East Coast energy market makes it particularly valuable.

Hundreds of people on both sides gathered for the last of four public hearings on a pending EPA study of fracking. The Binghamton hearings, twice postponed because of anticipated large crowds, are split into double sessions on Monday and again on Wednesday.

"Kids can't drink gas" and "Protect our water. Stop fracking America," were some of the signs carried by opponents. Supporters, including union workers eager for jobs, carried signs that said "Yes to science, no to paranoia" and chanted "Pass gas now!"

New York's Department of Environmental Conservation has halted issuing drilling permits until it draws regulations to govern the process. Complaints of well water contamination and surface spills of post- fracking water have forced revision of state rules in Pennsylvania, where more than 1,600 wells have already been drilled in the Marcellus Shale and more than 4,000 permits have been granted.

Drilling companies have used fracking to release natural gas from other shale reserves around the country. EPA earlier held hearings in Colorado, Texas and Pennsylvania.

Paul Rush of New York City's Department of Environmental Protection noted that half the state's population, residing in New York City and its environs, depend on unfiltered water from the Catskills-Delaware watershed that is in the Marcellus Shale region. Two DEP studies showed serious risks to the watershed if gas drilling is allowed there. He urged the EPA to read the studies posted on the DEP's website.

"There's no way this can be done safely. It will toxify the air, water and soil," said protester Kathy Shimberg, 73, of Mount Vision, N.Y., wearing a T-shirt that read "Love N.Y.? Don't frack it up."

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.6}: ... {wren1111} Thu, 07 Oct 2010 23:35:21 EDT (HTML)

GE creates device to recycle fracking water "http://fuelfix.com/moreenergynews/2010/10/01/ge-creates-device-to- recycle-fracking-water/"

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.7}: Colleen Nelson {cole2u} Fri, 17 Dec 2010 22:13:11 EST (HTML)

This documentary Gasland the Movie, which won an award at the Sundance Film Festival last year finally came out for public viewing in November -

You can now watch it for free online, or downloaded. Get friends and neighbors to watch it if they're drilling or getting ready to drill in your area.

This is what's happening in America as we speak - in Greene County Pa, where I live and raise my family the drillers are running into a real standoff that is springing up in record time thanks in part to this movie. People are getting organized county commissioners are suddenly activated, the state DEP is being hit from all sides and are being forced to act. The state of NY has a moratorium on drilling in the water table that feeds NYC. This is the big one - human health against blind corporate profit margin.

Watch this documentary. Josh Fox has been to the Pittsburgh area and got enough citizens and local government people alert enough to put a moratorium on drilling in the Pittsburgh area. Something not suspected - since they started fracking the marcellus shale in WVa they've had a number of earthquakes. This is cutting edge weird stuff that's going down. Josh was just awarded the John Lennon Peace prize for his work on this hot button environmental issue.

Josh a very cool normal kind of guy who was put on this quest when the big gas corps came for his parent's land in eastern PA a couple of years ago. It's all very real.

"http://www.freemoviesstreaming.net/watch-gasland-2010-free-streaming- online/"

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.8}: John Wilson {doorman} Sat, 04 Jun 2011 11:00:45 EDT (6 lines)

I am extremely gratified to see Colleen engaged in this topic.  This
is of major concern to us all.  We are rapidly poisoning this planet
so that only those who possess the ability to filter air and water
will be able to survive the degradation we are headed to.

It is so fucking stupid!  And for the most part we all capitulate.

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.9}: Colleen Nelson {cole2u} Sat, 04 Jun 2011 11:30:44 EDT (HTML)

But we're all not only in this boat together but we collectively as a culture that is rapidly becoming global totally addicted to energy consumption.

We can't ignore our own culpablity at every level. There is no us and them any more - if there ever was.

One of the parts I'm doing is to join the Izaak Walton League and be trained to test the waters in head water streams for source point pollution. And to report it and do follw up to make sure the polluters are identified. What the marcellus gas industry was allowed to do legally and sometimes illegally in Colorado only went under the radar because of population scarcity and political pressure that industry can put on the government.

Here on the east coast, any move they make has the potential to be a deadly blight on whole water sheds that feed millions.

They've been working in isolated pockets of PA an WV but the people are becoming savvy to their actions and not giving out information on thier part is no longer possible. The information is out there about the dangers. Every misstep on industry's part is toxic. They have the technology to be clean. But it's cheaper to cut corners.

You can't cut corners when it comes to the air we breathe and the water that sustains us.

This is the battle to produce clean energy that it's worth putting activist energy into.

People can't make a difference individually the way they can collectively but it takes individuals choosing to do something to make it happen.

"http://www.iwla.org/harryenstrom"

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.10}: John Wilson {doorman} Sat, 04 Jun 2011 11:45:27 EDT (1 line)

Agree totally.

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.11}: Nancy Davison {nmdavison} Sat, 04 Jun 2011 19:13:57 EDT (13 lines)

I was listening to an interview concerning fracking (?) the other day,
and there was a lot of interest in it, people calling in telling
stories of how the natural gas companies tell them it doesn't matter
if they sign a release, they're going to just drill on their
neighbor's land and access the noncompliant folk's land that way.
There was lots of talk of the damage to the underground water table
and so on.

When they interviewed the spokesman for the natural gas company, his
excuse was that we need the gas and so that's all there is to it. Duh!
I'd say we need water a lot more than we need natural gas. That show
really sensitized me to the situation, and I will be paying lots more
attention from now on.

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.12}: Colleen Nelson {cole2u} Tue, 07 Jun 2011 19:17:19 EDT (HTML)

"http://gaslandthemovie.com/"

Hydraulic Fracturing FAQs

How does hydraulic fracturing work?

Hydraulic fracturing or fracking is a means of natural gas extraction employed in deep natural gas well drilling. Once a well is drilled, millions of gallons of water, sand and proprietary chemicals are injected, under high pressure, into a well. The pressure fractures the shale and props open fissures that enable natural gas to flow more freely out of the well.

What is horizontal hydraulic fracturing?

Horizontal hydrofracking is a means of tapping shale deposits containing natural gas that were previously inaccessible by conventional drilling. Vertical hydrofracking is used to extend the life of an existing well once its productivity starts to run out, sort of a last resort. Horizontal fracking differs in that it uses a mixture of 596 chemicals, many of them proprietary, and millions of gallons of water per frack. This water then becomes contaminated and must be cleaned and disposed of.

What is the Halliburton Loophole?

In 2005, the Bush/ Cheney Energy Bill exempted natural gas drilling from the Safe Drinking Water Act. It exempts companies from disclosing the chemicals used during hydraulic fracturing. Essentially, the provision took the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) off the job. It is now commonly referred to as the Halliburton Loophole.

What is the Safe Drinking Water Act?

In 1974, the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) was passed by Congress to ensure clean drinking water free from both natural and man-made contaminates.

What is the FRAC Act?

The FRAC Act (Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness to Chemical Act) is a House bill intended to repeal the Halliburton Loophole and to require the natural gas industry to disclose the chemicals they use.

How deep do natural gas wells go?

The average well is up to 8,000 feet deep. The depth of drinking water aquifers is about 1,000 feet. The problems typically stem from poor cement well casings that leak natural gas as well as fracking fluid into water wells.

How much water is used during the fracking process?

Generally 1-8 million gallons of water may be used to frack a well. A well may be fracked up to 18 times.

What fluids are used in the fracking process?

For each frack, 80-300 tons of chemicals may be used. Presently, the natural gas industry does not have to disclose the chemicals used, but scientists have identified volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene.

In what form does the natural gas come out of the well?

The gas comes up wet in produced water and has to be separated from the wastewater on the surface. Only 30-50% of the water is typically recovered from a well. This wastewater can be highly toxic.

What is done with the wastewater?

Evaporators evaporate off VOCs and condensate tanks steam off VOCs, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The wastewater is then trucked to water treatment facilities.

What is a well's potential to cause air pollution?

As the VOCs are evaporated and come into contact with diesel exhaust from trucks and generators at the well site, ground level ozone is produced. Ozone plumes can travel up to 250 miles.

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{Nature_and_Environment.109.13}: We'll be there...... {cole2u} Fri, 10 Jun 2011 23:09:25 EDT (119 lines)

"http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/10/gas-lobby-bribery-public-
meeting_n_874903.html"

Environmental and citizen groups, already concerned about the makeup
of a federal subcommittee formed last month to make recommendations
for improving the safety of natural gas exploration, were buzzing
Friday morning with the disclosure of an email from an industry lobby
that appeared designed to lure supporters of natural gas drilling to a
forthcoming public meeting with promises of hotel rooms and baseball
tickets.

An industry spokesman defended providing for travel and
accommodations, but said the offer of baseball tickets had been
withdrawn.

"No one's getting paid anything, let's start there," said Chris
Tucker, a spokesman for oil and gas lobby group Energy in Depth, in an
email to HuffPost. "What we're trying to do is provide an opportunity
for folks to participate in a federal forum on best practices in shale
development, especially those who might not otherwise have the means
or ability to get to it themselves."

The emailed offer appears to have been sent to undisclosed recipients
by Thomas Shepstone, head of Shepstone Management Company, an
environmental, land use and zoning consultancy based in Honesdale, Pa.

Shepstone is also listed as the campaign manager of something called
the Northeast Marcellus Initiative, a new effort launched in April
that serves, according to the group's website, as "the eyes and ears
(as well as arms, legs and heart)" of Energy in Depth in the Marcellus
Shale. That formation is a vast area of potentially copious natural
gas yields underlying parts of Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and
New York.

Energy in Depth is the broader coalition of oil and gas producers that
has largely spearheaded the campaign to defend and support natural gas
exploration against charges that its practices -- particularly the use
of hydraulic fracturing -- are a risk to public health and the
environment.

The federal panel, and the public meeting in Pennsylvania slated for
next Monday, are part of several ongoing efforts to get to the bottom
of that question.

Shepstone apparently wanted to make sure that supporters of natural
gas drilling in the Marcellus were well represented at the June 13
meeting. His email message follows:

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Department of Energy Meeting on Hydraulic Fracturing
Date:*Thu, 9 Jun 2011 12:11:46 -0400
From:*Thomas Shepstone
To:*Undisclosed-recipients:
There is an extremely important meeting coming up this Monday and we
need folks to attend.
Here is the essential background, folks:
Department of Energy to Host Secretary of Energy Advisory Board
Natural Gas Subcommittee Meeting
Washington, DC – On Monday, June 13, 2011, the U.S. Department of
Energy will host a public meeting of the Secretary of Energy Advisory
Board (SEAB) Natural Gas Subcommittee at Washington & Jefferson
College in Washington, Pa. The meeting will allow subcommittee members
to hear directly from community members interested in the safety and
environmental performance of hydraulic fracturing.
WHAT:
Secretary of Energy Advisory Board Natural Gas Subcommittee Meeting

WHEN:
Monday, June 13, 2011
7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
WHERE: Washington Jefferson College Olin Fine Arts Center East
Wheeling Street Washington, PA
More information about the public meeting and the subcommittee can be
obtained by visiting www.shalegas.energy.gov.
Obviously, even though it's short notice and a long ways off (we just
learned about it ourselves) this is an extremely important event. We
need as many of you from our region there as possible under the
circumstances. Given the short notice and the distance, we are
prepared to help make this happen. We can offer the following
incentives to attend:

1. Bus transportation (we'll try to set something up with pickups in
maybe Binghamton, Scranton and the Williamsport area and provide the
details when you let us know of your interest).

2. A hotel room for the night of June 13th.

3. Your meals.

4. Tickets for the Pittsburgh Pirates game (they’re playing the Mets
that night)

5. Airfare (for older folks, especially..and for heads of landowner
groups)

If you can do this, please let me know by return e-mail ASAP and we'll
get back to you with the details once we know how many are willing to
go.

Natural gas critics found the promise of swag to be scandalous, with
the Delaware Riverkeeper Network going so far as to forward the email
to the Department of Energy with comments.

But Tucker said that the outrage was much ado about nothing.

"It's exactly what the opposition does for every single local township
meeting anytime one's held anywhere across the entire mid-Atlantic
region," the Energy in Depth spokesman wrote. "Difference is, we're
not busing people in for a local township meeting. This is a public
forum sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy. Our folks have the
right to be there, and if we have any say in the matter, they will
be."

A short time later, Tucker reached out again to add that the baseball
game had been nixed.

"After giving it some serious thought," he said, "we came to the
realization that no one should have to watch baseball of that
quality."

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