Category Archives: Hydrofracking

One dead, two injured in fracking blast

Three Halliburton employees were injured in a blast that occurred as they tried to thaw out a water pipe at an oil well site, the Denver Post reported on 13 November 2014. Two of the workers are being treated for serious injuries, but the third, however, died during the accident.

Fracking uses water pressure mixed with chemicals to break deep into rock to release energy reserves, such as natural gas and brine. The workers were warming the pipe when the rupture occurred.

The Halliburton fracking site where one person was killed and two others were injured Thursday, Nov. 13, 2014. Photo: Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

The Halliburton fracking site where one person was killed and two others were injured Thursday, Nov. 13, 2014. Photo: Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

Fracking blast kills one Halliburton worker, injures 2 in Weld County
by By Jesse Paul and Mark Jaffe, The Denver Post, 13 Nov. 2014

MEAD — One worker was killed and two were seriously injured Thursday when a frozen, high pressure water line ruptured at a Weld County oil well site.

The workers were trying to thaw the line when the accident occurred, officials said.

The Anadarko Petroleum Corp. well was being hydraulically fractured, or fracked, by the Halliburton Co. and the workers were Halliburton employees.

Get the full story here.

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Filed under Climate Justice, Energy, Fracking, Hydrofracking

Beyond Extreme Energy Protests End in Over 100 Arrests

Protestors gathered in DC outside FERC headquarters for the final day of protests this week via Ecowatch article below.

Protestors gathered in DC outside FERC headquarters for the final day of protests this week via Ecowatch article below.

Perhaps with the new “red” Congress coming into power, people will cease to think that politicians will fix the climate mess for us. They may be responsible, but that doesn’t mean they will clean up their mess. Time for communities to come together and create new and innovative–not to mention good old fashioned–ways to tackle the climate crisis that are socially just and ecologically responsible.

100+ Arrested at Beyond Extreme Energy’s Week-Long Protests at FERC

By Anastasia Pantsios | November 7, 2014  Source: EcoWatch

As the participants in the Great March for Climate Action ended up in Washington, DC, on Nov. 1 after a six-month trek across the country, they joined with other environmental groups to launch a week of action under the banner Beyond Extreme Energy. The actions revolved around a series of blockades at the DC headquarters of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) with more than 100 people arrested.

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Bioenergy / Agrofuels, Coal, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Fracking, Hydrofracking, Oil, Politics, Pollution, Victory!

More Arrests at Seneca Lake Blockade

As part of our continuing coverage of the Seneca Lake protests and arrests, Climate Connections is giving a little well deserved love to Stefanie Spear and EcoWatch. Spear, founder and CEO of Ecowatch, provides excellent coverage of environment, energy, and anti-fracking news.

The hard news today is that our friends at Seneca Lake continue to face arrest and prosecution for blockading the gates to the Crestwood Midstream gas storage facility, which was recently authorized to store natural gas under Seneca Lake by the FERC. Protests and arrests are also occurring at the DC headquarters of FERC. Yesterday, 15 protesters were arrested at the Seneca Lake Blockade.

We are proud of these people!  Fifteen people were arrested this morning blockading the gates of Texas-based Crestwood Midstream’s gas storage facility, including Martha Ferger, age 90, of Dryden, Tompkins County and Kenneth Fogarty, age 75, of Chenango County. Photo credit: Ross Horowitz

We are proud of these people! Fifteen people were arrested this morning blockading the gates of Texas-based Crestwood Midstream’s gas storage facility, including Martha Ferger, age 90, of Dryden, Tompkins County and Kenneth Fogarty, age 75, of Chenango County. Photo credit: Ross Horowitz

15 Arrested Protesting Gas Storage Facility in NY’s Finger Lakes Region

Stefanie Spear. EcoWatch. 3 November 2014

Fifteen people were arrested this morning blockading the gates of Texas-based Crestwood Midstream’s gas storage facility on the shore of New York’s Seneca Lake. This action marks the beginning of the third week of protests trying to stop major new construction on the gas storage facility authorized by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

“We’re standing on what used to be a part of my legislative district in Schuyler County. I am embarrassed and saddened to see what is going on here, I’m sad to see that some of the people in this district are actually supporting this endeavor to store gas in a very unstable salt formation,” said Ruth Young of Horseheads, a former member of the Schuyler County legislature and among those arrested today.

Read the whole EcoWatch article here.

Read the We are Seneca Lake Press Release here.

More information at We Are Seneca Lake.

Donate to the Jail Fund: Go to the Paypal Link on the right

 

 

 

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Justice, Corporate Globalization, Fracking, Human made disasters, Hydrofracking, Land Grabs, Political Repression

New York faces new fracking deadline

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo turned more than a few heads last night at a televised election debate held in Buffalo, New York, when he said that the state’s long awaited public release of its scientific and health analysis of fracking would be done by the end of the year. This, the only planned debate of the campaign, included Republican Candidate Rob Astorino, Green Candidate Howie Hawkins, and Libertarian Candidate Michael McDermott.

Astorino, the Westchester County Executive, aggressively supports fracking in New York because of what he characterizes as a “positive impact” on jobs and “economic development” in the state. He completely dismisses the environmental consequences. Astorino said that one of the “first acts of his administration” would be to kick down the regulatory doors so that fracking and extraction can begin immediately. Both Green candidate Hawkins and Libertarian Candidate McDermott would ban fracking because, they both agree, the science is in and the health consequences are clear.

NYS Governors Election Debate in Buffalo. Empty Chairs, Empty Heads. Empty Ideas - photo by Jay Burney

NYS Governors Election Debate in Buffalo. Empty chairs, mostly empty heads and empty ideas – photo by Jay Burney

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NYS White Man’s gubernatorial election debate in Buffalo, 23 October, 2014. Left to right–Republican Candidate Rob Astorino, NYS incumbent Governor Andrew Cuomo, Green Party Candidate Howie Hawkins, Libertarian Party Candidate Michael McDermott

The analysis that Cuomo spoke about has been at the center of attention and controversy since the state issued a series of Draft Environmental Impact Statements starting in 2011, and received a tidal wave of public comments focusing on the idiocy of opening up the state to the dangerous fracking industry. Initially Cuomo had promised that the analysis would be completed and released before the initial public comment period but backed down. It has been widely speculated that several generations of both reports indicate that fracking is not a scientifically provable safe technology.  The educated public knows that fracking is not safe to water supplies and human health. Subsequently Cuomo promised the release of the reports prior to this election. The reports have not been released and 10’s of thousands of New York citizens have bitterly criticized the lack of transparency involved in the creation of the health and science analyses.

“I am not a scientist” Cuomo, who is a lawyer, stated at the debate, “We have to let the scientists decide this issue.”  This may be an entirely disingenuous position, as the fracking debate in New York has been characterized by industry and state government viewpoints that include scientists for hire, academic investments by state funded institutions of higher learning, and well funded disinformation campaigns. We have known that the state decision would not be made until after this election.  We have been waiting for the release of the reports. Now we know that if Cuomo wins the election, he says that they will be released by the end of the year.

After that?

 

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Filed under Energy, Fracking, Great Lakes, Hydrofracking

Pinkwashed Fracking

Great image by James Wengler with article in Grist.

Great image by James Wengler with article in Grist.

It’s hard to be surprised by the absurdity of what companies latch on to ‘pinkwashing’ and team up with the Susan B. Komen foundation, especially after the documentary Pink Ribbon, Inc.

However, here’s one: a fracking company will be painting 1,000 drill bits pink to end breast cancer. At first, it just seemed absurd, but then I found an article by Steve Horn of DeSmogBlog, first published in Counterpunch and then picked up by Truth Out. Pinkwashed fracking actually has deep and developed roots it seems.

To be clear, “pinkwashing” only refers to the Komen foundation and how corporations–especially those hawking dubious products–buy in to it, not to legitimate work on breast cancer, or support of that work.

This fracking company wants to end breast cancer — wait, what?

By Liz Core, Grist, 8 Oct 8, 2014

October is “Breast Cancer Awareness Month,” which means we’re going to be seeing a lot of pink ribbons and graphic tees shouting “save the ta-tas!” at us for the next three weeks or so.

Lucky for the ta-tas, there’s a fracking company ready to join the fight! On Oct. 2, Baker Hughes announced that they’d contribute $100,000 to the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the largest breast cancer charity in the nation. In a press release, the company stated that it wanted to help “end breast cancer forever.”

Read the whole article here!

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Filed under Fracking, Hydrofracking, Media

Air emissions from open pit oil and gas waste threatens our health and well being

Four airborne and highly toxic chemicals associated with oil and gas wells and fracking sludge, (Benzene, Ethylbenzene, Toluene, and Xylene) are amongst those dumped in cheap and relatively unregulated waste disposal pits. Years ago the oil and gas industry lobbied Congress to exempt their waste from federal hazardous waste regulation.  The story below, “Pits of Despair” comes from the Center for Public Integrity and shared to us by New York State anti-fracking activist Sandra Steingraber. This story focuses on Nordheim, Texas and the exposure of that communities residents and children at a nearby school, to a 240 acre open pit dump that will receive millions of gallons of toxic sludge. But it could be your community.

A protest placard hangs on a fence a few hundred feet from where a 204-acre commercial waste facility is being developed. Signs voicing the discontent of the community pepper the landscape around the site and in the town of Nordheim. Eleanor Bell/Center for Public Integrity

A protest placard hangs on a fence a few hundred feet from where a 204-acre commercial waste facility is being developed. Signs voicing the discontent of the community pepper the landscape around the site and in the town of Nordheim. Eleanor Bell/Center for Public Integrity

 

Pits of Despair – Open Pits offer cheap disposal for fracking sludge, but health worries mount

Center for Public Integrity  David Hasemyer,  Zahra Hirji  October 2, 2014

NORDHEIM, Texas — School Superintendent Kevin Wilson tugged at his oversized belt buckle and gestured toward a field less than a mile from Nordheim School, where 180 children attend kindergarten through 12th grade.

A commercial waste facility that will receive millions of barrels of toxic sludge from oil and gas production for disposal in enormous open-air pits is taking shape there, and Wilson worries that the ever-present Texas wind will carry traces of dangerous chemicals, including benzene, to the school.

Read the whole story here

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Energy, Fracking, Human made disasters, Hydrofracking, Uncategorized

White House Council on Environmental Quality buries its head in sand on climate change ruling – DeSmog Blog

Over the past weekend Steve Horn published an important analysis of the recent federal decisions by the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) to not offer guidance to the federal agencies that it coordinates regarding energy policy and climate change. Industry pushback is given as a primary reason that the CEQ has dropped the ball.

Maybe organizers and participants at the September 17-24  Week of Action surrounding the People’s Climate March in New York can find a way to fit an objection into their busy “demands” list!

Photo from FOEI

Photo from FOEI

 Legal Case: White House Argues Against Considering Climate Change on Energy Projects
By Steve Horn, DeSmog Blog. August 31, 2014.

Just over a month before the United Nations convenes on September 23 in New York City to discuss climate change and activists gather for a week of action, the Obama White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) argued it does not have to offer guidance to federal agencies it coordinates with to consider climate change impacts for energy decisions.

It came just a few weeks before a leaked draft copy of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) latest assessment said climate disruption could cause “severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems.”

 

Read the whole article here

Demand System Change!

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Biodiversity, Bioenergy / Agrofuels, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Coal, Commodification of Life, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Events, False Solutions to Climate Change, Greenwashing, Hydrofracking, Keystone XL, Media, Oil, Political Repression, Politics, Pollution, Tar Sands, Uncategorized, War, Waste, Water, World Bank, WTO

Fracking study finds new gas wells leak more

By Seth Borenstein, June 30, 2014. Source: AP

Photo from AP

Photo from AP

In Pennsylvania’s gas drilling boom, newer and unconventional wells leak far more often than older and traditional ones, according to a study of state inspection reports for 41,000 wells.

The results suggest that leaks of methane could be a problem for drilling across the nation, said study lead author Cornell University engineering professor Anthony Ingraffea, who heads an environmental activist group that helped pay for the study.

The research was criticized by the energy industry. Marcellus Shale Coalition spokesman Travis Windle said it reflects Ingraffea’s “clear pattern of playing fast and loose with the facts.” Continue reading

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Filed under Hydrofracking, Water