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America’s Fracking Boom Spreads

With the President’s push for clean energy, fracking is about get a whole lot bigger in America. We’ll look at the mega-build-up coming in fracking.

In this March 25, 2014 photo, workers keep an eye on well heads during a hydraulic fracturing operation at an Encana Corp. oil well, near Mead, Colo. The first experimental use of hydraulic fracturing was in 1947, and more than 1 million U.S. oil and oil wells have been fracked since, according to the American Petroleum Institute. (AP)

In this March 25, 2014 photo, workers keep an eye on well heads during a hydraulic fracturing operation at an Encana Corp. oil well, near Mead, Colo. The first experimental use of hydraulic fracturing was in 1947, and more than 1 million U.S. oil and oil wells have been fracked since, according to the American Petroleum Institute. (AP)

The meltdown in Iraq right now hardly makes the Middle East look like a calm energy source.  And the President’s big push for lower emissions at home will not be met by solar and wind alone.  Far from it.  This country is poised to go after a lot more domestic natural gas.  And for better or worse, that means a lot more fracking.  Call it mega-fracking.  Many Americans have not taken onboard just how mightily this industry is gearing up for further vast growth, from well-head to transport to processing and pipelines.  This hour On Point:  future projection – fracking in overdrive.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Dennis Berman, business editor at The Wall Street Journal. (@dkberman)

Mark Zoback, professor in earth sciences and senior fellow at the Precourt Institute for Energy at Stanford University’s School of Earth Sciences.

Kate Sinding, director of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s Community Fracking Defense Project. (@KateSinding)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal: Are We Underestimating America’s Fracking Boom? — “Start with exotic Nazi technology, take a detour with South African apartheidists, and add a bit role for Iranian imams. What you have is—what else? —one of the most improbable and important American business stories of the past decade.”

News & Observer: Fracking? NC’s geology doesn’t support it –”Both the pro-fracking and the anti-fracking people ignore the geology of North Carolina. Petroleum (oil and gas) experts, however, do not ignore it. The Energy Information Agency of the U.S government shows large areas that fracking opens to oil and gas production. The largest is the Marcellus-Utica complex of western New York, western Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio and West Virginia. Numerous other areas are scattered to the west. None of them is east of the southern Appalachians, and the EIA shows nothing in North Carolina.

New Orleans Times-Picayune: St. Tammany Parish Council will wage court fight against fracking — “In front of a large sign-carrying, anti-fracking crowd, the St. Tammany Parish Council decided Thursday night to go to court to fight a proposed oil drilling project near Mandeville. By unanimous vote, the council adopted a resolution to hire outside attorneys to seek a court judgment and injunction to block the state Department of Natural Resources’ Office of Conservation from issuing drilling permits in St. Tammany.”

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  • FrankensteinDragon

    How can you say clean energy and fracking in the same breath? A bit dishonest don’t you think. Disgusting. Of course we know that the fracking industry was sponsoring this station.

    • Coastghost

      So do you support the fracking industry in supporting this station?

      • jefe68

        Did he say he supported the station?

        • Coastghost

          Wow, I managed an equivocation even before breakfast and without one drop of coffee!
          In one sense, jefe, you ask the very question I asked.
          In another sense, of course, I do in fact impute support of this station to FD insofar as he troubles to post here in the station’s sponsored forum. (Sadly, I cannot exempt myself, either.)
          Every one of us making any use of any of the electric-powered applied technologies offered to us is contributing ever so gently to the advent of Technogenic Climate Change. Without exception.

          • jefe68

            This is true. We are all consuming energy produced by fossil fuels.

            I’m not sure about fracking and I do think it’s being developed way to fast and that there are bound to be toxic waste and contaminated water problems. I do not trust the Oil/Gas industry and think fracking needs to be regulated. They are lobbying to keep unregulated. The extreme of this can be scene in NC’s new laws regarding fracking.

            These industries should be held accountable for any pollution or contamination that is caused by it.

            For instance, parts of New York sit above the Marcellus Shale, a rock formation that the Energy Information Administration estimates may hold enough natural gas to meet U.S. consumption for almost six years. Six years? That’s not a long time in terms of energy supplies. One of the problems is that the area Marcellus Shale is where New York’s aquifers are.
            Kind of a problem if they are contaminated. Is it worth six years of natural gas production for generations of water usage?

            http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2012/jan/05/fracking-new-york-poison-claim

          • Arkuy The Great

            So you are saying that the risks, however remote and ethereal, are too great to allow any fracking at all unless it promises to be the silver bullet that brings the messianic age.

          • jefe68

            No. However 6 years of gas supplies do not seem to me to be worth contaminating a the drinking water for millions of people.
            What part of that do you not get?

          • Arkuy The Great

            I do not get why you are playing up an unproven risk as a far greater menace than it really is and using that as an excuse to block any progress.

          • jefe68

            It’s not unproven. It’s based on the type of shale and rock in the region and how the chemical infused water used will disperse into the aquifers. Again, it’s about six years worth of natural gas. Hardly worth the risk.

          • Arkuy The Great

            It is not proven. There have been lots of anecdotes and wild theorizing, however. “Scare tactics” is not a synonym for evidence.

          • jefe68

            They are not scare tactics. There is plenty of proof that water moves through limestone and shale. Pumping millions of gallons into the ground and hoping for the best seems to be to great a risk for this area in relation to amount of potential gas there might be in the shale.

            This is the last time I will repeat this, it is not worth the potential contamination of water for six years of natural gas. If it’s done in New York one would hope it’s done so it does not effect any drinking water.

            New York City’s water should be protected, there are 20 million people in this area that should be considered.

          • TFRX

            Jefe, you really think these folks care about NYC?

            It’s too “urban”, unionized, and left-leaning. If something bad happens to the 20 million people in its metro area, do righties care, or does that just make more Foxfodder?

          • jefe68

            I know, and the mayor’s a socialist as well…

          • manganbr

            Why are you so dismissive of the risks and so unsuspicious of industry PR? You really think the documentary Gasland provides no compelling evidence for concerns here?
            It’s always odd to me when people dismiss the notion that PR generated by the companies might be biased, but somehow the non-industry scientists and doubters must be biased because they have something to gain–like there is some profit motive behind global warming theories (but not behind global warming denial)–I could see being radically suspicious of both sides–but the compartmentalized skepticism just makes one seem inconsistent and unpersuasive.

            And what about the methane released by natural gas fracking which, in terms of green house effect is something like 10 times as heat trapping. Now I don’t know how it stacks up per unit of energy, but I’d like to see more of an explained consensus from non-industry scientist about whether fracking is actually greener than oil. At the very least I think it’s fine to raise questions about these things, and not pretend to have more answers than we do.

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            Methane has ~34X the greenhouse effect as carbon dioxide. Which “only” lasts for about 8 years – but then it breaks down to … carbon dioxide. Which lasts much longer.

          • Don_B1

            Here is some support for your thoughts about the dangerous amounts of methane that do leak from fracking and even pipeline transmission:

            http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/06/04/3443211/energy-department-lng-no-climate-benefits/

            Note that it has been estimated that the current transmission lines (and a lot of them are under city streets — Boston and San Francisco have had their streets sampled for leaking methane) leak an amount of gas that the companies could sell and which would add some $2 billion to their bottom line after deducting the costs of sealing the pipelines.

          • FrankensteinDragon

            Absolutely well said. 1. Obama is a puppet sell-out and a fraud. 2. These manpipe lovers are paid hacks.

          • nj_v2

            How much are they paying you for shilling?

          • TFRX

            More than he’s worth.

          • Arkuy The Great

            I see your fusillade of ad hominem, which means you have nothing more of substance to say on this matter. You lose. Have a nice day.

          • FrankensteinDragon

            nothing to say–have you read any of these posts. have you ever read anything than your glen beck pr? Have you read a book? Have you ever stepped out your front door? You have had nothing to say except NO. no, i dont believe it. whaaaa! typical republican tea party nonsense. Willfully ignorant and contemptuous of education,learning, critical thinking… because its not cool. its cooler to be dumb. Its cooler to pursue wealth at any costs because i need others gratification to fill the emptiness inside of me. When you have nothing to say–nothing–nothing of intelligence or honesty there is nothing left to do except attack you. Reason, logic, compassion, honesty, truth–none of it works on your kind. Because you have none of it and understand none of it. The only thing to do with you is lock you up–becuase you are a danger to society.

          • FrankensteinDragon

            There is a wonderful article on alternet about people like you. Check it out. Why Republicans embrace willful ignorance and reject all forms of science or common sense. This is not the name of the article but it is the essence. You are being manipulated. And most likely, you’re getting paid 10cents either to post nonsense and evil or you work in the industry. It is criminal either way.

            It’s real easy logic son: if you pump massive quantities of hazardous chemicals into our earth and aquifers, we will be drinking your hazardous chemicals. People are dying now because of it. And when jerks lease their land, neighbors suffer. That is a fact, and you are responsible–either directly or indirectly by supporting this abomination. Just because you like to get sweaty and oily with your big man friends and play with big pipes and equipment doesn’t mean its right. A real man would not be so willfully ignorant and so bent on the destruction of our ecosystems and our communities. Your man complex is not worth it. It is a criminal act. There is nothing reasonable about it. Come to my town and I got one word for ya–sabotage!

          • Don_B1

            But it is not only the chemicals in the water used for injection; the release of the natural gas, and in the case of oil even more so, there are many toxic chemicals contained in that layer that are released which then travel up to contaminate levels of the earth above the layer being fracked.

          • nj_v2

            The risk of jumping off a tall building isn’t proven until one hits the ground.

            Go try it and let us know how it works out.

          • FrankensteinDragon

            hack. the risk is proven and to say otherwise is monstrous. Is your job worth contaminating our water–stay the f out!

          • FrankensteinDragon

            I am saying NO. never. You cant compromise with this. There is no safe circumstance. it is wrong unequivocally.

          • Don_B1

            It is you that are belittling the risks of fracking, not those that are asking to hold off until safety is proven.

            There is a new area of probability and risk analysis that is being developed to help evaluate the policy approaches for risks which are low but have huge impacts if they occur. You might want to explore that area and then you might take a different attitude on this. Or maybe you are one of the ideologues here who will hear no criticism of their thoughts.

          • Arkuy The Great

            Thanks for bringing that up. I actually work in an industry where impact vs. frequency risk analysis plays a major role so I am familiar with what you speak. Mentioning that such a field of analysis exists is not the same as actually doing it, I should point out. Given the prevalence of frivolous, exaggerated claims of harm masquerading as “facts” I suspect that the former applies more strongly to hydraulic fracturing rather than the latter.

          • FrankensteinDragon

            hacking fracking troll

          • FrankensteinDragon

            that’s exactly what he is. the tactic is to infuriate. Say no, until they are blue in the face, crying like spoiled idiot babies–saying dont i know you are but what am I–its republican and bag strategy. Its effective because it shuts down all discussion. That’s why you have to smack the little brats, put them in time out, or put up for adoption.

          • FrankensteinDragon

            That a foolish thing to say–the risks are not remote and ethereal. You are a dishonorable hack. Fracking is and always will be devastating to the earth, to our water, and to human health. It is an abomination, and a waste of time. (to say otherwise, is monstrous). We have hydro, wind, solar, geothermal, tidal, tidal, tidal… and the oil/gas/coal industry will do everything in its power not lose power thus all the retarded controversy.

            Yes, I am saying NO fracking EVER ever EVER! Stop fracking with my water! It is a crime!!!!!

          • nj_v2

            Yet some energy technologies don’t contribute to climate change, so there goes that straw man.

          • Coastghost

            Sorry: solar power and wind technology components HAVE to be manufactured, assembled, transported, installed: they don’t grow on trees or in fields, on housetops or in yards.

          • nj_v2

            Well, even the wood for my ax handle has to be grown, harvested, machined, transported, etc.

            Food which grows on trees needs to be tended, harvested, transported, etc.

            Take technology completely out of the picture, and we’re back to wandering naked in herds, hunting and gathering.

            What’s your point?

          • Coastghost

            Generally, that our unattenuated enthusiasm for “making the world safe for humanity” equips us for undertaking species-wide suicide.
            The irony is cosmic in scope, but our technologists seem never to detect the reverberations.

          • TFRX

            Ya wanna take another crack at that, champ?

          • Coastghost

            No, I think I did it right the first time, but thanks.

    • Don_B1

      Here is part of the documentation for your statement:

      http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/06/04/3443211/energy-department-lng-no-climate-benefits/

      at least as it shows the results for the further steps of making the natural gas (methane) from fracked wells into LNG. But much of that analysis applies to the first steps of extraction and pushing through pipelines to other NG customers.

      And Tom Ashbrook owes the listeners an apology for his introduction, which showed some profound ignorance, not his usual performance. But the fossil fuel industry, particularly the natural gas industry, has been advertising a lot lately and apparently effectively, spreading false information widely.

  • jefe68

    Fracking is not clean energy, period. Neither is natural gas.

    • William

      This type of drilling has been around for more than fifty years and the EPA can’t find anything wrong with it.

      • margbi

        Really? Nothing wrong? What about the flaming water from faucets? The pools of chemicals, about which nobody knows much, contaminating ground water? We need to get to renewable sources, though it may be too late, already.

        • HonestDebate1

          Nah, that’s just a viral fake video.

          • jefe68

            Nah, I wont go there.

          • nj_v2

            And DisHonestMisDebator Greggg is just a fake, shill hack.

            http://www.khou.com/news/texas-news/Scientists-Tests-prove-fracking-to-blame-for-flaming-Texas-wells-262115241.html

            Scientists: Tests prove fracking to blame for flaming Texas wells

            “The methane and ethane numbers from the Butler and Teal production are essentially exactly the same as from Lipsky’s water well,” said earth scientist Geoffrey Thyne of Wyoming, who reviewed the data. “It tells me that the gas is the same, and that the gas in Lipsky’s water well was derived from the Barnett formation.”

            We also asked soil scientist Bryce Payne of Pennsylvania to review the data. He agrees, saying the gas in Lipsky’s water (referred to in the report as well number 8) is clearly the result of fracking operations.

            “The gas from well number 8 is coming from the Barnett and it’s coming nearly straight from the Barnett,” Payne said.

            (excerpt)

          • HonestDebate1
          • TFRX

            Freebeacon?

            Ha.

            Oh, wait, you’re serious? Let me laugh louder and harder!

            HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

            (h/t Bender)

          • hennorama
          • nj_v2

            He’s wearing his fancy, super-special clown suit today.

          • jefe68

            The one with the honking nose that lights up. It’s the Bozo the Clown deluxe model.

          • nj_v2

            He’s ecologically conscientious, so i’m sure the nose is the LED model.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            There is a good reason it is called ‘natural’ gas.

          • TFRX

            You used to care enough to try with your crap. Don’t you like being a creative troll anymore?

          • hennorama

            TFRX — it’s all part of the “YouTube video” meme, which also requires neither thought nor effort.

          • Don_B1

            Proof that the schools they went to failed them. Will we be liable for restitution?

        • Don_B1

          The EPA has been finding a lot of toxic chemicals in the fracking water and the return water, as well as the ground water in layers above the fracked layer, but it has to have really strong proof before it says anything, what with the Neanderthals in the current Congress.

          Consider this paragraph from its December 2012 Progress Report:

          Toxicity Assessments

          The EPA has identified chemicals reportedly used in hydraulic fracturing fluids from 2005 to 2011 and chemicals found in flowback and produced water. Appendix A contains tables with over 1,000 of these chemicals identified. Chemical, physical, and toxicological properties are being compiled for chemicals with known chemical structures. Existing models are being used to estimate properties in cases where information is lacking. At this time, the EPA has not made any judgment about the extent of exposure to these chemicals when used in hydraulic fracturing fluids or found in hydraulic fracturing wastewater, or their potential impacts on drinking water resources.

          This is definitely NOT finding nothing wrong, it is holding back on saying that it has proof that something is wrong, and it is publishing its data so that others can do further investigations which could show what is wrong.

          The lack of a statement of wrong is not a statement that everything is “OK.”

        • keltcrusader

          and earthquakes

      • jefe68

        That’s not entirely true. Some of the chemicals used in fracking are indeed quite toxic.
        Methanol, benzene, toluene, xylene, and ethylbenzene are a few of the chemicals known to be used in fracking.

        There’s more.

        http://www.businessinsider.com/scary-chemicals-used-in-hydraulic-fracking-2012-3?op=1

      • nj_v2

        Ha ha!

        Nothing wrong except for earthquakes, methane showing up in people’s tap water, water shortages, water contamination with fracking chemicals, and dumping more CO2 into the atmosphere.

        Other than that, it’s all good.

        • Arkuy The Great

          Indeed. And if hydraulic fracturing can be definitively shown to be the cause of all of the evils you list you might have a point. It has not and you do not.

          • jefe68

            A tad hyperbolic pal.

          • Arkuy The Great

            No more so than most of the anti-frack rhetoric I see flying around here today.

          • nj_v2

            Did you get a memo from your Shill-Alert Network?

          • jefe68

            I see, so that makes it OK…
            Well, not really, it’s still a hyperbolic meme.

          • nj_v2

            RIght, like the way we waited to “definitively” proved that cigarettes caused cancer.

      • creaker

        Because the regulations for fracking have been designed specifically to not allow the EPA to find anything wrong with it.

      • TFRX

        Hey, where does the frackschiess get stored in WilliamWorld?

      • FrankensteinDragon

        that’s just a dumb thing to say and dishonest

      • andic_epipedon

        The EPA is finishing a report on fracking that is expected to be released this year. They have not said anything yet. It DOES NOT mean they can’t find anything wrong with it.

        http://www2.epa.gov/hfstudy

    • FrankensteinDragon

      the only criminal here are the frackers, the media hacks pushing it, and the government allowing it and encouraging it. criminals all. Tom Ashbrook included. its time for ashbrook to hit the road. I haven’t heard a good question from him in ages. he is an expert at playing pr for industry.

  • Michiganjf

    Water will be worth more than oil in another hundred years (already is in bottled form), and once climate change and over use has made surface water even more scarce, we’ll turn around to find that we’ve fouled every available source of groundwater… all for a few extra years of natural gas and oil.

    This will be one more thing future humanity can point to when claiming we were “the worst couple of generations the world has ever seen… the absolute filth of human existence.”

    Good luck kids!

    • Coastghost

      A bit late in the day for such optimism, no? The anomalocaridids sleep soundly in the Burgess Shale, we’ll all soon sleep soundly elsewhere.
      With out deathless commitments to our sciences and applied technologies, we won’t last as long as the dinosaurs. Begins to look as if we won’t much outlast the dodo.

  • John Cedar

    I had a well drilled at my new vacation property which produced less than a gallon of water per minute. My well driller knew if he went much deeper he would hit salt and so he came back and fracked the well.

    When he fracked it he did not inject any chemical into my well but dihydrogen monoxide. He used an ancient machine he bought from the oil fields, which he said injected at up to 10,000 psi. The well now produces plenty of clean potable water.

    • jefe68

      Great. That’s drilling a well for water, not natural gas.
      Also if I’m not mistaken dihydrogen monoxide is water.

      • nj_v2

        He was just trying to be clever with the DHMO thing. So cute.

        • jefe68

          Yeah, and so banal.

        • Arkuy The Great

          The whole DHMO thing never gets old!

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    There is no opportunity to Frack here in New England. We have to rely on nuclear or natural gas pipelines.

    Oh wait, the activists blocked building power plants. That is why we have the most expensive electricity in the country.

    • creaker

      Why would power companies ever want to sell us cheap power?

    • nj_v2

      Which plants did “activists” block?

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        There are numerous examples. The biggest is probably Seabrook station #2 (they were almost successful w/ SB #1). When natural gas was scarce they blocked a LNG offloading facility.

        The loons are particularly effective here in NE. The were able to shut down Vermont Yankee well before it’s useful life. And they are indiscriminate. The will block almost anything that represents progress– including natural gas plants and wind farms.

        • Acnestes

          So leave. Plenty of room in Mississippi.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Another voice of “tolerance” heard from.

        • nj_v2

          Cost overruns and regulatory restrictions were far more important than any activist actions. Nukes aren’t currently being built primarily because of economics.

          But that doesn’t fit your agenda.

    • TFRX

      Your idea of “useful life” and nuclear plants is…funny.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        It was licensed by the NRC for another 30 years of operation.

        • TFRX

          It had a bunch of fun stuff going on which you might have cared about if you lived next to it.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            No.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joanie-Gentian/610374005 Joanie Gentian

      Kinder Morgan wants to build a fracked-gas pipeline across northern and western Massachusetts, duplicating existing but leaky pipeline (est 20-40% loss rate) across central Mass. Seems gas headed for Nova Scotia terminal, then to Europe where prices just that much higher. Who pays for this pipeline…other than the conservation lands it is currently mapped to go thru? Electricity customers will pay via tariff tacked onto our bills.

      No lowering of our energy bills in New England, that’s for sure.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        20-40% loss rate?

        No one could afford to operate a pipeline with those losses.

  • OnPointComments

    Another program that is sure to bring out the environuts who are certain that all of our electricity needs can come from the wind generated by the flapping of butterfly wings and that we can run our cars on unicorn urine. Even though fracking has been around for more than half a century, and the scientific consensus is that fracking is safe, the Chicken Littles who believe anything the latest dilettante Hollywood filmmaker tells them will wail against this safe technology and say that we’re saving the planet wrong.

    Nearly 100% of fracking fluid is sand and water. Going to the beach must render the environuts apoplectic.

    The U.S. Department of Energy and the Ground Water Protection Council have concluded that fracking is safe and effective. The EPA has concluded that fracking is not a threat to underground sources of drinking water. The scientific consensus is that fracking is safe.

    • Arkuy The Great

      When scientific consensus agrees with our preconceived notions then it is the indelible word of God (so to speak) and must be obeyed.

      When scientific consensus runs afoul then the scientists must have been bought off by Big Oil and Big Corporate America.

  • creaker

    While the coal industry likes to blame its current woes on Obama, the primary reason has been due to a glut of natural gas.

    • hennorama

      creaker — AKA: The Free Market.

      Curious how some seem to ignore their worship of the above, in their efforts to, as you wrote, “blame … current woes on Obama.”

  • nj_v2

    The collective “we” continues to be remarkably short sighted and just plain dumb about energy policy. Or, is it simply that the political system is so controlled and corrupted by large, powerful, monied, corporate interests that “public” policy will always favor those interests, no matter the detrimental consequences to people or the environment.

    Frack gas is, at best, a few decades worth of bought time. Individual wells become dramatically less productive after only a few years, and, cumulatively, the amount of accessible gas is only going to last a few decades at current (and likely increasing) consumption rates.

    All this investment, effort, capital, etc. will have been spent on yet another fossil fuel bubble. Not only will the gas be gone and unavailable to potential uses more valuable than burning, but the expenditures also represent a lost opportunity cost to invest in reordering infrastructure, improving efficiency, and developing more sustainable energy resources.

    And energy is but one of the problems, or, really, symptom of the root problem; namely there are just too many people. Unless population growth is controlled and reversed, supplies of all essential resources will become ever more challenged.

    http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/ockhamsrazor/there-are-not-enough-resources-to-support-the-worlds-population/5511900

    There are not enough resources to support the world’s population

    The world’s population is now well over seven billion and growing. We have reached a stage where the amount of resources needed to sustain our population exceeds what is available, argues Professor John Guillebaud from University College London.

    “None of us in those days was worried specifically about climate change. As we’ve just been reminded by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, that environmental problem is terrifying enough, especially given the risk of runaway positive feedbacks, caused, for example, by methane release from permafrost. Even so, that is far from being the only life-threatening global problem. The UK government’s chief scientist and the last president of the Royal Society have highlighted the imminence of a ‘perfect storm’: water, food and fossil fuel scarcity. Reliable reports on the planet’s health such as The United Nations’ Global Environment Outlook have found water, land, plants, animals and fish stocks are all ‘in inexorable decline’. Already by 2002 it was calculated that 97 per cent of all vertebrate flesh on land was human flesh plus that of our food animals (cows, pigs, sheep etc), leaving just three per cent for all wild vertebrate species on land. Not to mention the obliteration of wild life in the oceans through acidification, pollution and massive over-fishing.”

    (excerpt)

    • OnPointComments

      The predictions of Professor John Guillebaud are wrong, and so were these predictions.

      • In 1865, Stanley Jevons (one of the most recognized 19th century economists) predicted that England would run out of coal by 1900, and that England’s factories would grind to a standstill.
      • In 1885, the US Geological Survey announced that there was “little or no chance” of oil being discovered in California.
      • In 1891, it said the same thing about Kansas and Texas.
      • In 1939 the US Department of the Interior said that American oil supplies would last only another 13 years.
      • 1944 federal government review predicted that by now the US would have exhausted its reserves of 21 of 41 commodities it examined. Among them were tin, nickel, zinc, lead and manganese.
      • In 1949 the Secretary of the Interior announced that the end of US oil was in sight.
      http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/01/19/great-moments-in-failed-predictions/

      • nj_v2

        Right-wing, denialist logic: Some predictions are wrong, so all predictions are wrong.

        Fossil fuels are unlimited and burning them is without consequence. Got it.

  • creaker

    We really need to dig into the longer term effects of fracking – if we are looking at problems down the road, those fracking companies are going to be long gone or just file for bankruptcy and tax payers will again be left with the bill for dealing with the aftermath.

    • Michiganjf

      Right-winger welfare on steroids.

  • BlueNH

    The WSJ article is behind a paywall but I found part of it posted online. $90 Billion for 66 proposed fossil-fuel projects over the next 5 years in Louisiana. All of them extremely harmful to the natural environment. How much longer can the Earth put up with humans’ indifference to the air, soil and water of this fragile planet?

    If all dirty, polluting energy project money (trillions of $$$$$ in tar sands, fracking, deep ocean drilling, mountain top removal, methane hydrate mining, etc.) were invested in clean energy research and currently available technology such as algae fuel, concentrated solar, tidal and wind, the earth could heal for little while and maybe, just maybe, we would not fry and boil future generations.

    But there is too much money in fracking, and too much greed, and not enough awareness of the natural world.

  • Jeff

    Merica, F’yeah!

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard
    • WorriedfortheCountry

      This analysis “assumes” current technology. Technology does advance in areas other than “solar”.

    • BlueNH

      Fracking along the San Andreas fault seems a bit foolish.

      • Coastghost

        On another hand: what an invitation!

  • AC

    i’m ok with fracking as it’s been around forever & is used for so many other reasons, including geothermal..
    - however – the containment of the spoils and waste needs much tighter regulations, & those need to be enforced – what’s the point otherwise? it drives me crazy when people don’t follow procedures!!
    also, it’s really not the larger operations who will be skirting the regulations, it’s the lone contractor w/only a couple of rigs under his belt – that will be who will risk not following through…

    • TFRX

      “Tighter regulations” is just another word for “destroying some extractive project’s economic productivity”.

      And I don’t trust the larger operators on this as you do. Massey Energy is pretty damn large, for example.

      • AC

        that’s true – it’s the local mindset as well. a lot of mining seems to take place in areas that are a little bit less informed….it’s easy to ‘look’ the other way – one eye open, one eye closed as the Chinese say…
        but the regulations do need to be tighter, and not for the reason you think – i don’t stand to profit from any of it, but i know there is some hysteria around the very concept of fracking too that’s not necessarily true…

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    I have never fracked down this street before;
    And the pavement always stayed beneath my feet before.
    All at once am I several stories high.
    And the house next to you is on fire.

    Is there sulfur smell in the heart of town?
    Can you hear a blast in any other part of town?
    Does toxic waste pour out, out of ev’ry door?
    No, it’s just on the street where I’ve fracked!

    {apologies to Freddie Eynsford-Hill}

  • pwparsons

    Lafayette, Colorado, Residents File Class Action Lawsuit Against State, Governor, and Colorado Oil and Gas Association:
    Asks Court to Overturn State Oil and Gas Act and
    Dismiss Industry Lawsuit Against Lafayette

    First-of-its-kind Lawsuit Seeks to Stop State and Industry Challenges
    to Lafayette Community Bill of Rights Which Bans Fracking

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    June 10, 2014

    Contact:
    Thomas Linzey, Esq.
    Community Environmental Legal
    Defense Fund
    tal@pa.net
    (617) 965-5074
    http://www.celdf.org

    LAFAYETTE, CO: Today, residents of Lafayette, CO, filed a first-of-its-kind class action lawsuit against the State of Colorado, Governor John Hickenlooper, and the Colorado Oil and Gas Association. The lawsuit was filed to protect the rights of the people of Lafayette to self-governance, including their right to ban fracking.

    In November 2013, residents of Lafayette overwhelmingly adopted a Home Rule Charter Amendment banning all new commercial extraction of natural gas and oil within the City limits. The Amendment establishes a Community Bill of Rights – including the right of human and natural communities to water and a healthy environment. The Bill of Rights bans fracking and other extraction as a violation of those rights.

    In December, the Colorado Oil and Gas Association filed a lawsuit against the City of Lafayette to overturn the Community Bill of Rights. The association is contending that the community does not have the legal authority to protect itself from fracking, and that corporate members of the association have the constitutional “right” to frack.

    In filing the class action lawsuit, the residents of Lafayette are arguing that the Colorado Oil and Gas Act, and the industry’s enforcement of the Act, violate the constitutional right of residents of the community to local self-government.

    The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) assisted Lafayette residents to draft the Community Bill of Rights. CELDF is providing its support and expertise to the residents of Lafayette with the filing of the class action lawsuit.

    Regarding today’s action, CELDF Executive Director, Thomas Linzey, Esq., stated, “This class action lawsuit is merely the first of many by people across the United States whose constitutional rights to govern their own communities are routinely violated by state governments working in concert with the corporations that they ostensibly regulate. The people of Lafayette will not stand idly by as their rights are negotiated away by oil and gas corporations, their state government, and their own municipal government.”

    Through grassroots organizing and public interest law, CELDF works with communities across the country to establish Community Rights to democratic, local self-governance and sustainability. CELDF has assisted more than 150 communities to ban shale gas drilling and fracking, factory farming, and water privatization, and eliminate corporate “rights” when they violate community and nature’s rights. This includes assisting the first communities in the U.S. to establish Rights of Nature in law, as well as the first communities to eliminate corporate constitutional “rights.”

  • hennorama

    Off-topic:

    Happy 90th Birthday to Pres. George H. W. Bush, who announced his intent to celebrate with another parachute jump today.

    • TFRX

      It’s a dual-jump, isn’t it?

      (For safety’s sake I hope so. Sorta remember him on what, his 80th?, doing the same thing.)

      • hennorama

        TFRX — yes, since Pres. Bush I can no longer use his legs, sadly.

        • TFRX

          (Oops. I wasn’t aware. He was always pretty hale, I thought. But he is 90 now.)

        • TFRX

          Ah…here we are:

          In the summer of 1984 former baseball greats Warren Spahn and Whitey
          Ford talked GHW Bush into playing in an old-timers’ game in Denver. When the
          Vice President was introduced, the crowd booed–who wanted a politician
          to ruin the fun? But Bush started to win them over when he rapped a
          single into left-center field off of Milt Pappas. Bush later took the
          field at first base. At the plate Hall of Famer Orlando Cepeda hit a
          bullet down the first-base line. “I thought it was going to kill the
          VP,” says Sean Coffey, then the military aide to Bush…But the 60-year-old
          Bush reflexively dove to his left and knocked the ball down, scooped it
          up and threw Cepeda out. The crowd went wild.

          That was GHWB at 60, while a sitting vice-president.

          • jimino

            He was on the Yale baseball team that made it to the College World Series in 1947, so he must have had game.

    • JGC

      That is amazing!

      • hennorama

        JGC — I’ve always been impressed by Pres. Bush I’s personal fortitude.

    • nj_v2

      Papa Bush in 2016!

      • hennorama

        nj_v2 — Pres. George H. W. Bush has probably forgotten more than any of his offspring have ever known, and there is precedent for a President who can’t use his legs.

  • skelly74

    Hahaha. I love the new attack on fracking to come: “Fracking…it’s a tool of the Nazis”.

    • TFRX

      What are you doing, some sorta “precog” Minority Report crap?

      Not nearly as clever as you think you are.

      • skelly74

        Sorry. Where you in the middle of coloring a poster with a swastika and fracking drill on it? No problem, people in general are not that clever. They’ll eat it up.

        • TFRX

          Too bad this isn’t a place for “people in general”. If you want to play to suckers, go elsewhere.

          • skelly74

            Yes. I see you are paying great attention to the show, with your big write up on Bush and baseball. Yes, this “isn’t the place for suckers”. You just go ahead and dance to the beat of the drum…fool.

          • TFRX

            Big writeup? Let’s see–a memory, three seconds of searching the internet for confirmation, and thirty seconds of editing.

            Not such an incredible demand of my attention in one hour.

            Go away, troll

          • skelly74

            So, who introduced the topic of Nazism to the show?

          • jefe68

            I think Bozo wants his clown shoes back as well.

          • skelly74

            Brilliant!

          • hennorama

            skelly74 — dear me, scolding TFRX for the horror of multitasking?

            WTF? (Wherefore Thy Folderol?)

          • skelly74

            Pardon my ignorance…

  • BlueNH

    Cheap energy……sure, it’s cheap, but every future living being will pay with their lives. For 150 years, no business, no investor has paid for the dumping of the pollution into our air, water, soil.

    I am sickened to hear Jindal crow about the coming investments in cancer-causing industries in his state. I am sickened to know these industries are ignoring the IPCC and IEA’s warnings that if we continue on the “Business As Usual” path, climate change will damage our atmosphere and create climate disruption.

    Do rich people think they won’t feel the effects of climate catastrophe? Do they think they live in a bubble?

  • mountainbikerz

    I ride my mountain bike on the section roads around Stillwater, OK, every weekend year round. Usually I encounter one new drilling site on every ride. The section roads have rubber and metal pipes running in the ditches that carry ground water to drilling sites. We now have hundreds of small earthquakes a year and a few larger ones. Previously we had no earthquakes. The oil boom is on.

    Checking data, I find that the US oil output has increased only 10% but that proves enough to stop imports of oil?? Oil independence does not mean that we will withdraw our control of world oil supplies. We will still argue for war with Iran and control of their huge oil reserves. Oil has too much power in our zeitgeist.

  • Scott B

    The sadly ironic part will be when the people with the 3rd lowest household income in the nation are needing medical treatment for the known myriad of health issues (cancer, asthma, reproductive problems, just for a few) fracking causes, can’t get that treatment because Jindal and company refused to expand Medicaid.

    • hennorama

      Scott B — that’s not a problem, because they will still “have access to” medical care.

      Via Emergency Rooms.

      • Scott B

        Yes, all that “free” medical care Mitt Romney said is out there.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Human beings are carbon logs. When they die and rot they release methane, water vapor, and other “benefits” to the surrounding atmosphere.

    Calculate the impact of 8 billion carbon sticks living then dying — on Global Heating, sea level rise, and the other happy effects of too many humans chasing too little planet.

    • James

      …not sure if serious

      • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

        I’m a registered electrical engineer (power and controls). Deadly serious. HD

        • Guest

          You do realize that your contention applies to every animal on the planet, including creatures like ants who collectively have a greater body mass then all humans and thus stands to reason would be a bigger carbon log then humans?

    • Scott B

      Actually, we’re a lot like trees. Besides sharing some 70% of identical DNA, we take in some elements, like oxygen,that we need to live, and give off CO2 that the trees breathe in and give off oxygen. We live, we take in, then we die and give it back. Trees, however, don’t run rampant over nature, to get what it needs, nor do they leave waste and byproducts that nature can’t handle.

  • Art Toegemann

    The crime of fracking is compounded by the production of energy by solar panels. There is no need to frack, drill, or burn in general. Go solar!

    • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

      Except for the “dirty” energy consumed to design, build, ship, install, operate, and maintain the solar industry. No free lunch, ‘eh? Hoober Doober

      • Art Toegemann

        We are in a transition period. Remember the light bulb shining on the solar panel powering the light bulb shining on…

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      No need if you are a Luddite.

    • streetglide

      Turn on your lights right now, today, using solar. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

      • Art Toegemann

        They’re not visible from the ground, but we may infer that there are, once again, solar panels on the roof of the White House, in spite of Ronald Reagan.

        • streetglide

          I would suggest you stop calling fracing a “crime”. It is not. It is a procedure for freeing trapped hydrocarbons from the earth. Yes, the same hydorcarbons that power your vehicles and provide fuel to produce energy for lighting your home. And, although I’ve never been there, I would guess solar is NOT the only power source for the white house…no matter who lives there at the time.

          • Art Toegemann

            What a petty, spiteful gesture, a certain, total loss, of Reagan’s to remove the panels Carter had installed. That had nothing to do with technology, that was our President as an oil pig puppet, politics at its worst.
            You sound like you are located safe from the infamous side effects of fracking, side effects that, for all practical purposes, are criminal.

          • streetglide

            I am located in safe area Art, Texas. Yup right in the heart of the fracing boom. I can tell you from personal experience there have been NO infamous side effects from fracing and the only criminal acts I have seen are acts of criminal stupidity by folks like yourself who damn a practice that has done nothing but benefit people in this country.

    • Coastghost

      But if all energy production (including fracking) is “criminal”, then all energy consumption is “criminal”, regardless of source of generation. (Even solar panels have to be manufactured, transported, assembled, installed, marketed.)

    • Art Toegemann

      If solar energy were not the viable method of energy production that it is (internationally, including the US), then we would be stuck with the very primitive age of Quest for Fire. Fire is now pyromaniacal.
      We have solar energy and it is only getting better, there is only more of it.
      I know the law. By “criminal”, I meant like “Cheney”.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        “Cheney”
        Lon?

  • Scott B

    Jindal complained about the damage the oil from the Deepwater Horizon did to the environment and the fishing and tourism industry, but he’s allowing something that they know cause problems for the environment. More doublethink by government leaders, all in the name of a quick dollar.

  • Coastghost

    If geothermal venting continues to melt Antarctic ice sheets with gleeful abandon, Louisiana will have fresh expanses of wetlands in appreciably short order.

    • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

      And we get to retire the congressional delegations of the states under water. Everybody wins! HD

  • AC

    if that caller is correct, that frightens me – why do people think the EPA is so unimportant? i don’t want to live in a country with no EPA, i’ve traveled to a few and it’s depressing….

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      It’s about the overreach. No one wants a dirty environment. (CO2 is not dirty).

      You can read an excellent analysis on how the EPA has regulated coal here:

      http://judithcurry.com/2014/06/11/clean-coal-2/#more-15810

    • warryer

      You realize that you naturally exhale CO2 right, as do all animals? You are a polluter under the EPA and they have given themselves the authority to regulate CO2 emissions.

      • AC

        what does vegetation breathe? their focus is about keeping natural balance – don’t be hysterical for pete’s sake…..

        • warryer

          Indeed. With an abundance of food populations tend to explode. With more CO2, we are going to see more plant growth with higher CO2 levels.

          Hysterical? Is what I said valid in the court of law or not? Humans exhale CO2 and the EPA has authority to regulate CO2. Where am I wrong?

          • AC

            i misunderstood, i assumed you were trying to infer that the EPA is so powerful that they over-reach.
            which is not true – not true at all…..

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            Breathing does not change the level of carbon dioxide in the air over the long term.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    What regulations saved the folks on the Titanic?

    • Scott B

      That’s the point: There weren’t many, and the few that did exist were ignored.

  • John Roberts

    1. Exactly how ‘cleaner’ is natural gas (per MBTU) – compared to coal or (Brent, Texas or tar sands) oil?
    2. In the conversation about obtaining energy independence, hy do the numerous ways of reducing consumption always get drowned-out by discussions about other sources of fossil fuels ?

  • James

    Private property owners should be able to sue frackers for property damage, assuming they haven’t waived that right via a signed contract.

    • jefe68

      Never sign anything without consulting a good oil and gas lease lawyer, never.

  • J__o__h__n

    Maybe I should rethink my skepticism of fracking. The benefits of natural gas are national/global and the environmental damage is local. The “job creating” anti environmental regulation states can then deal with the mess they created while the country as a whole is better off than if we created the energy by burning coal which is bad for everywhere.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Cost of electricity UP.
    Average sea level rise UP.
    Average ambient air temperatures UP.
    Growth in the economy UP.
    Population of the planet UP.
    Number of other species lost forever UP.
    Great jobs available for all folks on planet earth UP.
    Overfishing by China, Japan, and the rest UP.
    Chemicals dumped into agriculture UP.
    Fresh water disappearing from SW USA UP.
    Peace on earth goodwill to mankind UP.

    What is it that Herb Stein used to say? “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop.” That’s a bright future for humanity, ‘eh?

    * Herb Stein, economist — the father of Ben.

  • nj_v2

    The whole thing strikes me as madness.

    Here we are desperately fracking, drilling, digging every last bit of ancient sunlight to power a horridly inefficient, sprawling, wasteful, energy-gobbling infrastructure which could only have been built using the previously plentiful, previously easily accessible fuels whose supplies are now nearing their end.

    Using a purportedly “cleaner” fossil fuel to attempt to keep the giant, creaky monster going only delays the day of reckoning. So-called renewables are not going to be energy-dense enough to power the existing infrastructure in its current form. So, the proffered “bridge” eventually leads off a cliff. unless we commit to re-engineering the way we’ve organized nearly everything about how an industriallized society operates.

    Why are there never any truly Big Picture thinkers/commenters on programs like this? James Kunstler? Chris Martenson? Richard Heinberg?

    • streetglide

      They are all out driving to their next speaking engagement in their Hummers.

    • OnPointComments

      I’m all for delaying the day of reckoning.

  • AC

    that’s true, there are tons of natural methane pockets all over the middle of the country. people thought it was ‘the end of days’ during the new madrid earthquake because the ground was exploding in fireballs (+ the mississippi flowed backwards) that was 1811. personally i think this contributed to the whole ‘bible belt’ mentallity….

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    No mention of nuclear in this conversation?

    They aren’t serious since it is the only scalable baseload technology available today. They are avoiding the “inconvenient truth” like the plague.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Congress could pass a law mandating that solar radiant energy density outside of the atmosphere increase by.. 30%? Oh, let’s be generous, let’s make it 50%. Problem solved?

    Now all that has to happen is the sun has to get off its lazy posterior. After Congress gets off its, of course.

    • Arkuy The Great

      See the experience that Germany is having with Energiewende. They have been so successful in building out renewable energy (wind and solar) that they are building 22 brand new coal-fired power plants as we write.

    • warryer

      Damn lazy sun.

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      Right after they pass a law to not allow it to rise each morning!

  • AC

    i think it will be up to the people, we’ll have to take the initiative to change our energy consumption. aren’t you covering a story developing in Hawaii about the energy companies getting worried because everyone’s switching to their own solar powered systems? as the tech gets cheaper, it will be easier. i can’t do wind because of my local geography, but my husband and i are getting ready to put solar on the garage and roof.
    of course, individual usuage will never fulfill say a whole cities need, but it will make a dent….

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Do you have a solar “payback” estimate time? With and without subsidies?

      The last time I priced it out here in NE the payback time was about 18 years and the panels were only warrantied for 20 years.

      • AC

        it’s much less than that – one of his colleagues just did it and he’s been bragging about it, so now the hubby is all gung ho to try it – i’m sure there will be another show, by then i should know my specs

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          My issue is IF it requires massive subsidies then it isn’t scalable. And net metering IS a subsidy too. But I’m still routing for success of solar.

          • JGC

            Wait- are you in favor of routing the success of solar, or are you rooting for the success of solar? : )

      • BlueNH

        We live in New Hampshire. Our 6kw system powers our household electric, hot water and plug-in automobile, with excess going to the grid. Payback 8 years. What a great investment.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          I assume that is with a subsidy?

          • BlueNH

            There are rebates available in most states, and federal tax benefits to most.

            For decades, fossil fuel companies have received subsidies but have not had to pay for dumping their poisons in our atmosphere and water. And, yes, CO2 is a proven greenhouse gas.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            A 50-70% subsidy payed for mostly by your less well off fellow citizens is not a scalable solution and is nothing like subsidies received by fossil fuel companies.

            Yes CO2 is greenhouse gas, but CO2 is not a poison. It is necessary for plant life. CO2 gave us some unknown percentage of the .84C warming we’ve seen since 1880. Not much to be concerned about.

          • TFRX

            And more scheiss about “solarissubsidizedbutextractivesarent”…Quel surprise.

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            New Hampshire does not have SREC’s, I don’t think.

        • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

          My brother and his wife have a 6.37kW system, and they each drive an EV, they have A/C and it covers everything except their heat; which is wood pellets.

          It will pay off in under 10 years (maybe as low as 8) without the SREC’s, and 5-6 years with them. And SREC’s are good because they begin to apply the actual cost of carbon to our electricity.

          Remember, they have no regular gasoline use, and almost no regular maintenance costs on their EV’s.

          In the first year, their system is going to produce over 7.2MWh.

      • tbphkm33

        The “problem” with solar right now is not that the current products are not good, they have around a 10 year payback – problem is that there is an impending technological leap. The system you can install in 5 years will cost less and be more efficient. Lowering your payback time even further. Right now, I would not jump on the bandwagon. Hold off a few years.

    • Art Toegemann

      New panels going into production have an increased efficiency of 43%. Yours are 16%.
      But, I wish you the best.

  • TFRX

    “State by state flexibility”?

    What happens to the states downstream? I mean, if I’m dumping crap into the Ohio river at the edge of Pennsylvania, where I live, can I get my state lege to say “suck it, Ohio, it’s you’re problem now”?

    (Metaphorical for all state borders.)

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    The bridge to our bright energy future ends at the pipeline to the past. Well said, that guest.

  • AC

    leaking pipes are a HUGE problem and waste of resources. who was that that was just talking? omg – he gets it!

    • Coastghost

      Terry Gilliam’s “Brazil” with its dire warnings about defective ductwork is almost thirty years old now: it’s not as if we were never warned . . . .

      • streetglide

        So true. Ignore the warnings of Monty Python troupe members at your own peril.

        • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

          Give me ONE example when a comedian was wrong about anything???

          • JGC

            From the Daily Mail, “Hitler the Comedian: The Nazi Leader’s Bodyguard Reveals a Different Side of the Dictator”:

            http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1028813/Hitler-comedian-The Nazi-leaders-bodyguard-reveals-different-dictator.html

          • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

            Not a professional comedian. Professional dictator.

          • JGC

            Gotcha! ; )

          • streetglide

            Richard Pryor when he believed that free basing Cocaine was fireproof.

          • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

            Damn! Ya got me!

      • Arkuy The Great

        Yeah, but make sure your forms are in order before attempting any repairs.

  • James Hayes-Bohanan

    Thanks for your thoughtful coverage of this important issue. If we had rational environmental policies, people would be getting locked up — or at least fined — for most of the fracking that goes on.
    You were right, Tom, to press your guests on the question of whether natural gas can be seen as a bridge. With the huge money going into it, we will not get rid of it any easier than coal. It is not a bridge — it is a plank.
    http://environmentalgeography.blogspot.com/2013/08/natural-gas-plank-to-future.html

  • http://www.SonCav.com Ron Swanson

    Are there any studies showing fracking is NOT a positive economic boom for the local towns? More jobs, more people spending money locally, increased taxes. etc.? If we can take the positive economic effects as a given, my vote goes to studying ways to solve the problems, rather than simply saying ban / stop fracking. Ours is a technology that purifies frack wastewater on site. That means pure H2O instead of the really nasty frack water that must be disposed. That means less water needed for future frack jobs because the water can be reused. That means less danger to the environment as the holding ponds now have distilled water in them, rather than the crap water. That means less earthquakes, as there is no loner a need to dispose the bad water into the disposal wells. And we’re but one solution. Let’s put collective minds together to solve the problems. #FrackResponsibly.

    • AC

      i believe if you google ‘man camps’ you’ll get part of the answer. suddenly, thousands more mouths to feed and waste to manage in what was once the middle of no where….
      also, what is happening to states roads – there are some heavy loads getting put on roads originally only designed for agricultural equipment and minimal traffic…
      i’m ok with fracking, but i’m not blind that there aren’t negative impacts from the suddenness of it all

    • carmen

      What you propose sounds fabulous in theory, but the reality today is that there are a multitude of studies showing that fracking is harmful to both those employed by and those living nearby fracking operations, and is also detrimental to the whole earth affecting EVERYONE. Why is natural gas the answer? Why halt the spread of renewable energies that are not toxic and damaging to our earth? Natural gas lobbyists have too much power over our politicians and our media’s information is so bias that it’s making it so difficult to trust that fracking practices will ever be as safe as you say.

      Many more people will be roaming the earth after us…. We absolutely have to STOP Fracking practices until it’s 100% proven to be safe to humans and earth.

      It’s time for the media to take responsibility to their audience by providing a thorough factual and unbiased analysis of this issue.

      Hawaii has an interesting story of fighting the established energy system. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/a-solar-boom-so-successfull-its-been-halted/

    • Art Toegemann

      Here’s a solution: solar energy.

      • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

        I would say the solution is renewable energy; including solar, wind, biomass, tidal, wave, small scale hydro, and geothermal. Which can be stated as solar, tidal, and geothermal; because wind, wave . hydro and biomass are all a form of solar energy.

        The sun: the Great Fusion Reactor In The Sky.

    • tbphkm33

      You sound a little bit like WalMart arriving in a small town – new jobs, more choice, etc., etc. A few years later, less jobs as everything on Main Street has gone out of business. Less of a tax base to run the local government, school system, fire and police services.

      Fracking is great at first – but once the party is over, its the local people who are left to deal with the negative impacts.

  • Bonnie Blue Crouse

    So does anyone still think that we can go a mile or more underground, drill horizontally and bust up the rock formations that have been there for a billion or more years, inject highly poisonous chemicals in order to loosen and extract the oil and gas found there, and none of those toxic, lighter-than-water substances will percolate up into the water table directly above the drilling? Ever? Seriously, folks, the companies profiting – and by profiting I mean reaping obscene profits – those companies will not benefit by your paying attention to their poisoning of our aquifers, so be prepared for them to hold out something sparkly for you to look at instead. “Jobs! Money! We’ll give you an amount equal to .00001% of one day’s profits to permanently sign away use of your land! Such a deal!”

    I say be prepared, because they definitely do not want you thinking about the consequences when they pollute the water that every living thing will rely on for the next – oh, million years or so – and then walk away with no responsibility whatsoever for the damage they do. Quite a racket if you can get away with it. We had the good sense to ban fracking in North Carolina and that is what the people overwhelming want, but a few weeks ago the rats in our state legislature pulled a fast one literally in the middle of the night – I am not making this up – and reversed themselves with no public hearings and no opportunity for the public to comment before they slammed the gavel down and voted to open the entire state to fracking. Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you ALEC at its best. Things do not go better with Koch.

    • northeaster17

      I’ve a friend. A builder. One of his mantra’s is “water always finds a way.” No matter how far down water is it will move. Fracking only hastens this. It will probably take awhile, the frackers will be gone, but that poisoned water will pop up some where. That will be the legacy.

    • tbphkm33

      Don’t worry, in geological time, a million years is nothing. The Earth will go on, life will evolve… just not with us dumb humans.

  • Bruce94

    The caller from Gretna got it right. I am skeptical when the
    governors of two states who have prevented millions of their constituents from benefiting from Medicaid expansion under the ACA, hold out the false promise of how once again rewarding Big Oil & Gas with windfall profits and various favors, would be such a boon to the economic and physical well-being of the people who reside there.

    When I hear the voices of those governors touting all the blessings of Fracking, I’m reminded that their electoral success was based largely on their embrace of and support from radical, right-wing populists who
    promote anti-govt. paranoia, hyper individualism, rabid consumerism, and an unregulated, rapacious form of capitalism.

    As the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina approaches and remembering the devastation from the BP Oil Spill that ended four years ago this July, perhaps there are lessons to relearn from our schizoid attachment to cheap oil and gas:

    –the residents of once pristine wetland and coastal communities
    (i.e. Louisiana) and their political leaders ready and willing to embrace an industry that engages in one of the riskiest and dirtiest extractive
    enterprises known to man–an industry that reaps enormous profits while at the same time threatening to destroy not only the property values and entire way of life for coastal residents, but also other engines of the region’s economy including commercial and recreational fishing, tourism and hospitality.

    –states like LA and NC so blinded by the short-term gains of promoting the interests of Big Oil & Gas, that they are willing to ignore the history of the industry’s failed safety and environmental protection record and
    to defend the obscene profits of multi-national corporations at the expense of their own people.

    –a nation so mesmerized by the ideology of unregulated,
    rapacious capitalism, that for many the conservative mantra “Drill, Baby,
    Drill” offers the only hope in spite of the fact that every map showing world oil reserves indicates the U.S has less than 3% of all reserves and, hence, no expansion of domestic exploration could begin to reduce our dependence on foreign oil or bring down its price given the current level of our consumption.

    –a nation so addicted to cheap oil and gas that it, aided and abetted by the Neo-con wing of the GOP, was willing to engage in a war that imposed a cost in terms of Blood and Treasure far exceeding any benefit and that has destabilized an already volatile area in the world enabling Iran’s ascendancy as a strategic power.

    • notafeminista

      Well and there ya have it. They don’t think like you do, so therefore they MUST be deluded. Even Orwell only had a “2 minutes’ hate”.

    • jefe68

      One of the links above points to NC not having the right geology for enough natural gas to be worth the investment.

      • Bruce94

        Yep. The right-wing Gov. and legislature there will no doubt make the investment in fracking without implementing a rigorous cost-benefit analysis much less an environmental impact study so that they can enrich their corporate masters and secure their wealthy donor base. On the other hand, it may be (as your comment implies) because these politicians don’t understand the geology of their state…just too many rocks in their heads :)

  • Christopher Maxwell

    HELIUM, also keep in mind that on “Science Friday” it was pointed out that Helium is generally most often collected as part of Natural Gas collection! This is hard to get anyway else and cannot be recovered once it escapes into the atmosphwere and out into orbit and away from our planet. We should be careful to collect as much helium as possible when fracking!

    • tbphkm33

      … explains why the frackers sound so funny when they are talking…

  • harverdphd

    Fracking is here to stay and the President knows it. His buddies on Wall Street have privately told him that he needs to put together a reasonable and stable environmental regulatory plan locked in for decades. Otherwise those trillions in cash waiting for investment are going to stay put.

    • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

      WRONG. Not this time. This time, someone has to pay the piper.

      • http://themichmashcenter.blogspot.com/ Shawn Wooster

        Nobody will pay. Environmental degradation will continue apace. The vast majority of Americans could care less. They’re too busy worrying about how to get by.

  • BDSpin

    One thing we never discuss: energy conservation. Use less heat/AC, buy less stuff (a LOT less), travel less or not at all, eat less meat and more local or home-grown foods, reuse what you have, share things, and realize that you cannot have infinite growth on a finite planet. This is the simplest thing to do, and the best for the environment, for natural beauty, and, some think, for the soul. Yes, it will upset the economy, but the economy is a mess anyway and there are things that matter more than money and business. Really, has intense industrialization and profligate energy use made us happy…or just crazy?

    • tbphkm33

      Might have thought gas prices tripling over the past 20 years might have woken people up, but it does not seem so. Who knows, maybe paying $6 or $7 per gallon with no increase in take home pay will wake people up.

      • http://themichmashcenter.blogspot.com/ Shawn Wooster

        High fuel prices won’t matter. Europeans routinely pay as much as $9/gal., but everyone still wants a car, the universal symbol of freedom. Hell, look at the Chinese. They’d rather exist in a smog-filled nightmare than give up their cars or dream of owning a car.

    • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

      I feel this is a pointless argument (But I hope I’m wrong.)

      On the one side you have “the choir” of those of us who are already champions of sustainability or at least do what we can.

      On the other side you have those, like my father, who truly DO NOT CARE.

      So, you’re either preaching to the choir or to those who don’t care.

  • tbphkm33

    Hmm… ever heard of a fracking operation close to a private golf course or a gated neighborhood? Funny how all these greatly abundant natural resources are never geologically available close to where the well off live and play.

  • JGC

    Here, from voxdotcom, is “11 maps that explain the US energy system”:

    http://vox.com/2014/6/12/5803998/the-us-energy-system-in-11-maps

    I love maps.

    • hennorama

      JGC — putting the cartography before the horse, eh?

      • 1Brett1

        A proverbial tip-o’-the-hat to you this evening.

        • hennorama

          1Brett1 — putting the heart before the coarse, eh?

          Thanks for the nod.

        • Godzilla the Intellectual

          From what proverb does that saying originate? How is that saying – in any way, proverbial?????

    • 1Brett1

      Thanks for the link! And a thumbs up for the “I love maps” sentiment!

  • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

    Geothermal Power. Problem Solved

    • StilllHere

      We’re already doing it. The low hanging fruit has been picked.

      • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

        Hawaii isn’t doing it. Therefore, it’s not being done. It does not seem like fracking can be considered “low hanging fruit.” Therefore, why should geothermal be judged on that basis?

        • Andrew Page

          Why aren’t YOU doing it? If you can produce Geothermal power at $0.15 per kWH and sell it for $0.25 you can find SOMEONE to finance you.

          Go forth! Get your financing, get your engineers, get your permits and build…
          and while you’re doing that…
          SHUT UP!

          • Godzilla the Intellectual

            I clearly stated in another post above that no one wants to make the investment. The reason fracking and coal are so popular is because there is a hundred years of oil and coal infrastructure, and many universities that push out petroleum engineers and mining engineers. AND many lists of highest paid undergrad degrees saying petroleum engineering and oil and coal oriented geology programs rank at the top.

            The ONLY reason geothermal can’t be competitively scaled is because these other technologies have more than a hundred years head start! It’s unreasonable to think any technology can compete with that.

            Even the MIT report said it would take at least 10 years and a 750 million dollar investment to get to be competitive.

            Obviously, you’ve never tried to get financing for such a massive undertaking and long term investment. I have.

            Truly, if you have nothing to contribute to the conversation, stop bothering me. My superior intellect has better things to do than babysit you.

  • StilllHere

    Fracturing is great for the economy and eventual energy independence.

    • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

      You are a pathetic loser.

    • ExcellentNews

      Good – yes. Great – no. What would be GREAT is a long-term, well-funded economic policy towards high-tech renewables, storage, and nuclear. In the meantime, it’s better indeed for the dollars to go to Oklahoma City rather than Ryadh. And to make sure taxes on these dollars are invested in something that’s indeed great.

  • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

    A large reason for fracking is because there is already “petroleum” infrastructure in place. Petroleum engineering experts etc.

    Geothermal power isn’t being done in Hawaii – therefore, as far as I’m concerned, it’s not being done in ANY serious manner.

    Talk about the REAL issue. The fact that companies are mandated to act ONLY in the interest of shareholders. This means, they are mandated to only make the big investment into a new arena when they absolutely MUST, because the returns from “low hanging fruit” require less investment, = more money in the hands of shareholders.

    This is NOT rocket science. Geothermal Power IS a solution. But no one wants to make the investment! They would rather Frack everyone’s drinking water up than make an investment in Geothermal.

  • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

    Viable renewable energies exist in abundance but no one wants to make the investment. PERIOD.

    What good is the collective battle cry of 50 million scientists and 80 million environmentalists if NO ONE is willing to make the investment into infrastructure necessary to grab the bull by the horns???

    I don’t see the environmentalists, environmental organizations, or climate scientists sacrificing a portion of their personal salaries and revenues to invest in renewable infrastructure!

    All they do is collect and analyze data, make reports, and lobby.

    • ExcellentNews

      Well said, Sir. However, the voices of 100+ million educated, forward-looking people does not count as much as the voices of King Abdullah, the Koch Brothers, or Mr. Massie. So there goes our democracy and our world…

  • LucySinclairsyk

    my buddy’s sister makes $87 every hour on the internet
    . She has been unemployed for 6 months but last month her payment was $19402
    just working on the internet for a few hours. go right here M­o­n­e­y­d­u­t­i­e­s­.­C­O­M­

  • Varenik

    We ARE a nation of morons for allowing them to do this to us. Corlia, I was also getting an impression, listening to Tom, that reminded me of the “grilling” Jamie Dimon was recieving in Congress – “forgive us for pretending to be outraged for you guys screwing the whole country if not the world, please advise us on what kind of laws we can pass to cement your right to do more of it to your hearts’ content” a la Senator Barton apologizing to BP before an equally “tough” grilling. What a fracking shame. (Intended). Tom needs to be replaced by Larry Flynts of this world.

  • andic_epipedon

    The culture of the fracking industry is the enemy when it comes to the problems associated with fracking. There has been available technology for years to capture methane gas yet it is just recently they have been willing to come to the table to discuss implementing this best available technology. Before public momentum caught up with them, they declared there was no problem with methane and then after that there was no solution to trapping methane. The desire to push forward while denying the truth is the biggest problem with the fracking industry.

    I have sat at the table representing the federal government as a scientist on other issues unrelated to fracking. If the companies are big enough and you tell them to do something they don’t want to do, they will call their congressman and have you silenced. It is imperative that the public discourse continues. You cannot trust your government to do the right thing.

  • Generalissimus

    Drudge Report has been covering the earthquakes in OK. It has been the story on the top of the page at least twice this year. Unfortunately when Drudge links to an article about the quakes the comments are flooded with pro industry goons that only know how to regurgitate talking points. It is impossible to frack a well and not cause the earth to shake even a little. Geologists would have to agree.

    I am in SW Pennsylvania, and this issue has brought folks together from all sides of the political spectrum. I have been to protests where Occupy activists (protesting industry overreach) and TEA Party activists (protesting the egregious private property rights violations) stood side by side.

  • ExcellentNews

    Because there is no concentrated wealth around solar and renewables. Many people will make hundreds of $K, or few millions from it – but few billionaires will make hundreds of billions. On the other hand, fossil fuels are hugely profitable venture for a handful of asset owners.

  • Godzilla the Intellectual

    Viable renewable energies exist in abundance but no one wants to make the investment. The government could give tax breaks for geothermal development.

    A 2006 report by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), that included the potential of enhanced geothermal systems, estimated that investing 1 billion US dollars in research and development over 15 years would allow the creation of 100 GW of electrical generating capacity by 2050 in the United States alone.[12] The MIT report estimated that over 200 zettajoules (ZJ) would be extractable, with the potential to increase this to over 2,000 ZJ with technology improvements – sufficient to provide all the world’s present energy needs for several millennia.[12]

    • George Gipson

      Methane from fracking is far worse than carbon. Touting this as clean is disgusting and dangerous.

      • Godzilla the Intellectual

        I didn’t say fracking, dumbass.

        I said Geothermal.

        • George Gipson

          The article was on fracking I didnt want my comment to go to the bottom where nobody would see it. Im surprised at how little I hear on the very serious methane leakage problems with fracking. Dick

          • Godzilla the Intellectual

            You created a thread that makes no sense because your ego is so desperate to be seen and heard it won’t let your comment go to the bottom.

            I’ve done that, so I can’t be too harsh. Reign it in.

          • George Gipson

            No its because all I see or hear is that fracking is a clean alternative to coal and it isnt when taking into consideration the amount of methane that escapes from the process. Its actually much worse because methane is much worse than carbon. Its really scary that we are pretty much all in on this as a country.

          • Godzilla the Intellectual

            Okay. You are awesome. I’m kind of glad you hijacked this thread.

  • Godzilla the Intellectual

    Why does everyone keep saying wind and solar.

    Geothermal is proven to be exponentially more viable.

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