Category Archives: Energy

Breaking Action Alert: Enbridge Blockaded

17 July 2014.  Source: Swamp Line 9 via Earth First! newswire

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Individuals from Six Nations and their allies have interrupted work on a section of Enbridge’s Line 9 pipeline. The work stoppage began around 10am this morning. Individuals involved asked workers to leave, asserting that the land is Haudenosaunee territory guaranteed under the Haldimand deed, and that Enbridge’s workers were present without consent or consultation.

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Indigenous Peoples, Oil, Tar Sands, Uncategorized

Vermont Gas seeks waiver to begin construction staging for pipeline

By John Herrick, June 17, 2014. Source: VT Diggers

Photo by Rising Tide Vermont

Photo by Rising Tide Vermont

Vermont Gas Systems has asked state regulators for permission to begin preparing for the construction of its Addison County pipeline extension before it secures a federal wetlands permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

This is the final permit needed by Vermont Gas Systems, which is a subsidiary of Gaz Metro with a Vermont headquarters in South Burlington, before it begins construction of the 41-mile pipeline extension from Chittenden County to Middlebury. The pipeline will temporarily impact about 23 acres of wetlands, the largest area of Vermont wetlands ever reviewed by the Corps.

The company is required to obtain all necessary permits before beginning construction or site preparation as a condition of its certificate of public good granted last December. Continue reading

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Filed under Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Fracking

Frack waste trucks blocked from entering injection well site in Athens County

June 5, 2014. Source: EarthFirst Newswire

Photo from EarthFirst NewsWire

Photo from EarthFirst NewsWire

An Athens County resident has barricaded the gates of a frack-waste transfer station near the rest area off of HWY 50. No trucks can enter or leave the site, and K&H injection well operations are effectively stopped for the business day. Crissa Cummings, age 42 of Millfield has locked herself to the gate, charging that the recently drilled K&H 2 injection well is operating unsafely. Cummings noted that ODNR reports show that more than 12 tons of contaminated soil and water have been removed from the site since January, and that 410 feet of cement casing has been lost down the injection well shaft, signifying a potentially dangerous situation. “In light of the recent studies that have linked fracking chemicals to birth defects, I feel sick when I think about all the babies and the pregnant friends that were protesting at this site in February, a couple of weeks after the brine spill,” says Cummings.

A banner has been placed over the gates that reads “12 TONS OF SOIL AND WATER CONTAMINATED. K&H2 NOT SAFE”. Supporters wearing white hazmat style suits and ventilator masks are gathering, holding signs and chanting. Cummings herself is wearing a ventilator, noting that at least 4 workers have died since 2010 from exposure to frack waste, which contains high rates of benzene and other chemicals that can sicken people and be fatal when inhaled. Cummings says, “When a community says it does not want injection wells because we don’t believe they are safe, and our public servants ignore the desires of the public and our locally elected officials, the only recourse left to us is to use our bodies to stop the toxic frack waste from being injected into these dangerous wells.”

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Obama climate plan: too little, too late

By Bill Weinberg, June 5, 2014. Source: WW4 Report

Photo by ssppjournal.blogspot.com

Photo by ssppjournal.blogspot.com

For the first time, the US Environmental Protection Agency has proposed to limit emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from existing power plants, the single largest source of carbon pollution in the United States. The response has been predictable. Environment News Service notes: “Democrats and public health and environmental groups rejoiced in the proposal of a measure they have advocated for years to fight climate change, but Republicans cried doom, warning that the rule would destroy the American economy.” The New York Times writes: “[E]nvironmental advocates praised the proposed rule for its breadth and reach while the coal industry attacked it as a symbol of executive overreach that could wreak economic havoc.” The Daily Beast‘s Jason Mark dubbed the program “Obamacare for the Air” because both plans are “numbingly complex,” “based on a market system,” “likely to transform a key sector of the economy,” and “guaranteed to be intensely polarizing.” In other words, a market-based plan is being attacked by the right as green totalitarianism. This would be perverse enough if the plan’s goals were anywhere close to sufficient to actually address the climate crisis—which, again predictably, they are not.

Power plants that burn fossil fuels account for roughly one-third of all greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. There are currently no national limits on carbon dioxide emissions, although limits are in place for levels of arsenic, mercury, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particle pollution emitted by power plants. The Clean Power Plan, as it is being called, allows states various ways to meet its proposed carbon dioxide emissions cuts, including market-based carbon-trading programs such as those already in place in 10 states. The target for the cuts is 30% nationwide below 2005 levels by 2030. Continue reading

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Filed under Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Politics

Colorado faces oil boom “death sentence” for soil, eyes microbe fix

By Bruce Finley, May 4, 2014. Source: The Denver Post

A pair of nesting bald eagles watch night fall last month within sight of an oil pump in Weld County, the heart of Colorado's oil and gas boom. (Karl Gehring, The Denver Post)

A pair of nesting bald eagles watch night fall last month within sight of an oil pump in Weld County, the heart of Colorado’s oil and gas boom. (Karl Gehring, The Denver Post)

Colorado’s intensifying oil and gas boom is taking a toll on soil — 200 gallons spilled per day seeping into once-fertile ground — that experts say could be ruinous.

 

The state’s approach has been to try to compel companies to excavate and haul the worst muck to landfills.

But with support from state regulators, oil companies increasingly are proposing to clean contaminated soil on site using mixing machinery and microbes. This may be cheaper for the industry — and could save and restore soil.

But it is not proven.

“I’m comfortable with it. It is another example of innovation and opportunity by the oil and gas and service industries,” Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission director Matt Lepore said. “The whole point is that it is safe, that the harm to the environment has been minimized.” Continue reading

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Filed under Biodiversity, Energy, Fracking, Pollution

“Bomb train” carrying crude oil explodes in Lynchburg, Virginia

Note: Click here for a video of the derailment/explosion: http://instagram.com/p/nbHqexhD4e

-The GJEP Team

By Steve Horn, April 30, 2014. Source: DeSmogBlog

Photo: BRANDON TASSONE

Photo: BRANDON TASSONE

A freight train owned by CSXCorporation has erupted in downtown Lynchburg, Virginia, which sent “flames stories high” into the air, creating a large black cloud.

ABC‘s WSET has reported four of its cars were “labeled crude oil” and one witness interviewed on WSET who is an employee at Lynchburg’s Market at Main restaurant, Randy Taylor, told show hosts it “sounded like a jet” when it exploded.

“The train that derailed and caught fire in Lynchburg, Virginia, belongs toCSX Corp. and was carrying crude oil,” explained a Reuters breaking story. “The accident occurred near the waterfront and some crude oil is leaking into the James River, which feeds into the Chesapeake Bay.”

Around 300 people were evacuated following the accident because of the black, billowing smoke. Though the incident happened in the heart of downtown, no injuries or deaths have been reported.  Continue reading

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Filed under Energy, Oil

Sinopec fracking in China turns deadly

By Fatima Hansia, April 24, 2014. Source: CorpWatch

A worker performs a routine check to the valves at a natural gas appraisal well of Sinopec in Langzhong county, Sichuan province, March 1, 2011. Photograph: Stringer /Reuters

A worker performs a routine check to the valves at a natural gas appraisal well of Sinopec in Langzhong county, Sichuan province, March 1, 2011. Photograph: Stringer /Reuters

A deadly explosion in Jiaoshizhen, Sichuan province, has raised concerns about the risks involved in hydraulic fracking in China. The explosion occurred at a facility operated by Sinopec – one of China’s biggest oil and gas companies – that is being advised by Breitling Energy, a Dallas-based company.

China, which recently became the world’s largest producer of greenhouse gases, is trying to diversify into natural gas production as a new source of energy, especially as much of its energy is produced from burning low-grade coal, which has also exacerbated urban pollution. The latest technology that China is experimenting with to extract natural gas ishorizontal fracking – the process of drilling and injecting water and chemicals into the ground at high pressure in order to shatter underground rock formations to help release trapped oil and gas. First invented in the U.S., horizontal fracking has sparked a boom in energy production, helping boost U.S. output by over 50 percent in the last five years to 7.4 million barrels a day.  Continue reading

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Why US fracking companies are licking their lips over Ukraine

By Naomi Klein, April 10, 2014. Source: The Guardian

A large field of fracking sites in a Colorado valley. 'The industry’s singular solution to the climate crisis is to dramatically expand an extraction process that releases massive amounts of climate-destabilising methane.' Photograph: Ted Wood/Aurora Photos/Corbis

A large field of fracking sites in a Colorado valley. ‘The industry’s singular solution to the climate crisis is to dramatically expand an extraction process that releases massive amounts of climate-destabilising methane.’ Photograph: Ted Wood/Aurora Photos/Corbis

The way to beat Vladimir Putin is to flood the European market with fracked-in-the-USA natural gas, or so the industry would have us believe. As part of escalating anti-Russian hysteria, two bills have been introduced into the US Congress – one in the House of Representatives (H.R. 6), one in the Senate (S. 2083) – that attempt to fast-track liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports, all in the name of helping Europe to wean itself from Putin’s fossil fuels, and enhancing US national security.

According to Cory Gardner, the Republican congressman who introduced the House bill, “opposing this legislation is like hanging up on a 911 call from our friends and allies”. And that might be true – as long as your friends and allies work at Chevron and Shell, and the emergency is the need to keep profits up amid dwindling supplies of conventional oil and gas.

For this ploy to work, it’s important not to look too closely at details. Like the fact that much of the gas probably won’t make it to Europe – because what the bills allow is for gas to be sold on the world market to any country belonging to the World Trade Organisation. Continue reading

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Filed under Climate Change, Corporate Globalization, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Fracking

Two log jail time to stop logging, strip mine expansion in Illinois

By James Anderson, April 2, 2014. Source: TruthOut

Police escort to their cars, two Ohio activists under arrest for a blockade intended to stop logging along Rocky Branch Road, a precursor to Peabody Energy's strip mining expansion and the closure of the road planned by the company. (Photo: James Anderson)

Police escort to their cars, two Ohio activists under arrest for a blockade intended to stop logging along Rocky Branch Road, a precursor to Peabody Energy’s strip mining expansion and the closure of the road planned by the company. (Photo: James Anderson)

Activists courted arrest recently in Harrisburg, Illinois, to stop Peabody Energy from continuing logging operations related to strip mine expansion.

Police arrested two activists at a blockade set up on Rocky Branch Road in Harrisburg, Illinois, early on March 28, 2014, to stop Peabody Energy from continuing logging operations as part of the company’s strip mine expansion.

Daniel Goering, 20, and Alice Fine, 19, laid down a tarp on the road to block the route to be used for logging that day. Along with other environmental activists and with the support of community residents directly impacted by Peabody’s operations, the two tried to forestall and possibly prevent further strip mining and the proposed closure of Rocky Branch Road.

Goering and Fine – a self-identifying “radical power couple” – are students at Oberlin College in Ohio who joined with other activists intent on stopping Peabody, the largest private-sector coal company in the world. It has been active in mining operations around Harrisburg since 1999. Continue reading

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Coal, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Mining

US energy consumption, CO2 emissions up in 2013, new analysis shows

Note: More renewable energy.  More fossil fuels.  More CO2 emissions.  In America (sic), we just want more of everything, planet be damned!

-The GJEP Team

April 2, 2014. Source: ScienceDaily

Natural Gas, frackingAmericans used more renewable, fossil and even nuclear energy in 2013, according to the most recent energy flow charts released by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

Each year, the Laboratory releases energy flow charts that illustrate the nation’s consumption and use of energy.Overall, Americans used 2.3 quadrillion thermal units more in 2013 than the previous year.

The Laboratory also has released a companion chart illustrating the nation’s energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. Americans’ carbon dioxide emissions increased to 5,390 million metric tons, the first annual increase since 2010.
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Filed under Climate Change, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Hydroelectric dams, Hydrofracking, Nuclear power, Oil