Posts Tagged ‘fracking’

Monday Moaning

The Fracking Truth

Hydraulic Fracturing, or Fracking, has raised hopes, promised riches and seen as the highly needed source of new fossil fuels.

America has been blinded to the truths of fracking. England’s David Cameron is pushing the cart as Britain’s solution.

Billions of barrels, just waiting to be plundered.

But wait, check out this story.

Write-down of two-thirds of US shale oil explodes fracking myth

Industry’s over-inflated reserve estimates are unravelling, and with it the ‘American dream’ of oil independence
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Next month, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) will publish a new estimate of US shale deposits set to deal a death-blow to industry hype about a new golden era of US energy independence by fracking unconventional oil and gas.

EIA officials told the Los Angeles Times that previous estimates of recoverable oil in the Monterey shale reserves in California of about 15.4 billion barrels were vastly overstated. The revised estimate, they said, will slash this amount by 96% to a puny 600 million barrels of oil.

Wow, so that’s one myth about to be busted.

UK looks to boost fracking with new land access rules

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The UK government has proposed new rules regarding rights to access land in a bid to speed up the introduction of fracking.

It proposes that shale oil and gas companies are granted access to land below 300m from the surface.

David Cameron’s myopic views as he pushes fracking as the solution to Britain’s woes.

The majority in Britain are opposed to fracking. There have been strong anti-fracking protests at Balcombe, West Sussex, against test-drilling which opened the eyes of the British people.

The effects of fracking include, polluting underground water supplies, mini (at the moment) earthquakes and methane in local water supplies. But the politicians are turning a blind eye to all this as they see riches dancing before their eyes.

Honestly, the verve with which politicians are pursuing this fracking is pathetic.

The people’s voices must be heard.

 

Make you Fink on Friday

Is this a wake up call?

 

Balcombe’s close encounter with fracking has a silver lining

Being the village at the centre of a national debate on energy production has made us think about our own responsibility

An anti-fracking sign in a window at Balcombe, West Sussex. Photograph: Graham Turner for the Guardian

Last summer the village of Balcombe inadvertently became the byword for something none of us would have chosen: public hostility to fracking.

A recent parliamentary briefing on public attitudes towards shale gas talks about “before Balcombe” and “after Balcombe”, as if our village was an event, not a place. Since then, our community has served as a lightning conductor for anti-anti-fracking flak put out by shale gas cheerleaders in government and the onshore oil and gas exploration industry. We have been accused of being irresponsible, unpatriotic, selfish and called Nimbys.

We didn’t ask for any of this. The threat of fracking took us by surprise, and so did our sudden celebrity as the poster child of the anti-fracking movement. This whole experience has been one of finding ourselves at the centre of events that are completely outside of our control. It has been a bewildering and divisive time that has opened up deep rifts in our once harmonious community.

Caroline Lucas’ arrest for her protest in Balcombe last summer – charges for which she was today acquitted – epitomised the polarisation of local opinion on this issue, with some villagers as alienated by the tactics used by protesters as others had been by the fracking plans.

But Balcombe’s close encounter with energy production has had one crucial silver lining. It has forced us to engage with energy issues to an unprecedented degree – making us think about the energy we use, where it comes from, the politics of energy provision in the UK, the pros and cons of different generation technologies and more.

This collective awakening has started us on a journey we might never have considered if fracking had never been on the cards – a journey towards a 100% renewably powered future. Our ticket to that future is a new community power company called REPOWERBalcombe. Its mission is to match our village’s domestic electricity consumption kilowatt for kilowatt with community-owned, locally generated renewable energy – and to re-unite our community behind this ambitious goal.

We’re not Nimbys. We recognise that we all need energy and that that energy has to come from somewhere, and we want to play our part in ensuring Britain’s energy security too. But we want the right to choose how we meet that challenge, and community-scale renewable technology gives us the chance to make that choice for ourselves.

Through REPOWERBalcombe, our community is choosing solar power and demand reduction to meet our energy needs. Our mission is all about taking responsibility for our energy supply, but in a way doesn’t harm the prospects of future generations or damage quality of life for our community.

We know there’s an energy crisis coming, and we’re trying to do something about it. But fossil fuels are so last century. The future of energy is renewable, and the patriots of REPOWERBalcombe believe that Britain should be leading the world in the switch away from fossil fuels – not giving out mixed messages and dragging its feet.

Something very strange is happening when on the one hand ministers single out onshore wind turbines and solar farms for attack because they are so “unpopular”, while on the other hand they go “all-out for shale gas” – when polling consistently shows the unpopularity of shale gas.

Repowering Balcombe is as much about self-determination, choice and community power as it is about generating electricity. This is a newly possible model of energy provision that is being done by us and for us – instead of being done to us. If a group of local volunteer residents can do this for our village in our spare time, imagine what whole towns and cities could do to repower themselves if they try.

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Opinion:

Yes, this is a wake up call. We need to wake up and face our responsibilities as a community. If we want power, then we have to make it.

We have become too reliant on the big companies and their ruthless practices. We have to empower ourselves, take back our control and send these bastards packing.

Yes, I see this as a wake up call. If a small place like Balcombe can do it, so can the rest of us.

Satireday on Eco-Crap

sound_of_fracking

Make you Fink on Friday

stop frackingWhy oil companies and governments should frack off!

There has been much said over this fracking issue, oil companies telling us that it’s safe, despite triggering earthquakes (which bought experts say is nothing related to the fracking), flammable gases cropping up in kitchens in such quantities that the kitchen tap can be ignited (once again, bought experts say this is not a result of fracking). The governments are rubbing their hands with glee at the prospect of endless oil, then lying through their teeth telling us that it is safe and we need it.

But a report yesterday tells the horrible truth.

California has run out of water. In Texas many areas are also out of water. Areas of these states have become desserts, farmers can’t irrigate crops.

Why?

Because they have wasted 97 billion gallons of water fracking.

The aquifers that keep the water running have dropped 300 metres, that is nothing short of disastrous.

When a river or a lake  is depleted, it is replenished after the next good rain. Not so with aquifers, they take years to replenish, some even centuries.

What is an aquifer? Image:

What is an aquifer? Image: Source

The aquifers are the delicate balance of nature between drought and plenty; you destroy them and you’ve got nothing left.

The truth about fracking is that it is to see how many ways you can f**k over Mother Nature.

Further, fracking involves injecting chemicals along with the vast quantities of water, Where does that contaminated water go? What chemicals are involved? How do these chemicals affect life?

Countries across the globe are getting into this bullshit, Cameron is fighting tooth and nail to get fracking going in Britain. The man is an IDIOT! As are all politicians who support fracking. New Zealand is doing it, New Zealand? It’s on a major tectonic plate line, are they going to trigger more earthquakes?

Who gives a shit, drill baby drill!

Monday Moaning

A Texan tragedy: ample oil, no water

Fracking boom sucks away precious water from beneath the ground, leaving cattle dead, farms bone-dry and people thirsty

Fracking boom sucks away water from underground, leaving cattle dead, farms bone-dry and people thirsty


Beverly McGuire saw the warning signs before the town well went dry: sand in the toilet bowl, the sputter of air in the tap, a pump working overtime to no effect. But it still did not prepare her for the night last month when she turned on the tap and discovered the tiny town where she had made her home for 35 years was out of water.

“The day that we ran out of water I turned on my faucet and nothing was there and at that moment I knew the whole of Barnhart was down the tubes,” she said, blinking back tears. “I went: ‘dear God help us. That was the first thought that came to mind.”

Across the south-west, residents of small communities like Barnhart are confronting the reality that something as basic as running water, as unthinking as turning on a tap, can no longer be taken for granted.

Three years of drought, decades of overuse and now the oil industry’s outsize demands on water for fracking are running down reservoirs and underground aquifers. And climate change is making things worse.

In Texas alone, about 30 communities could run out of water by the end of the year, according to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

Nearly 15 million people are living under some form of water rationing, barred from freely sprinkling their lawns or refilling their swimming pools. In Barnhart’s case, the well appears to have run dry because the water was being extracted for shale gas fracking.

The town — a gas station, a community hall and a taco truck – sits in the midst of the great Texan oil rush, on the eastern edge of the Permian basin.

A few years ago, it seemed like a place on the way out. Now McGuire said she can see nine oil wells from her back porch, and there are dozens of RVs parked outside town, full of oil workers.

But soon after the first frack trucks pulled up two years ago, the well on McGuire’s property ran dry.

No-one in Barnhart paid much attention at the time, and McGuire hooked up to the town’s central water supply. “Everyone just said: ‘too bad’. Well now it’s all going dry,” McGuire said.

Ranchers dumped most of their herds. Cotton farmers lost up to half their crops. The extra draw down, coupled with drought, made it impossible for local ranchers to feed and water their herds, said Buck Owens. In a good year, Owens used to run 500 cattle and up to 8,000 goats on his 7,689 leased hectares (19,000 acres). Now he’s down to a few hundred goats.

Source: The Guardian Read more and see the video

Opinion:

There’s not a lot to say really, other than fracking and shale oil are the death of an already raped planet.

Change the World Wednesday – 13th Feb

Last week’s CTWW on fracking was an important one. I visited many of the blogs who had fracking posts and the surprise to me was that so many people had written of the complacency surrounding this practice.

I read this story:

The Promised Land: A Small Town’s Struggle With Hydrofracking

OXFORD, N.Y. — The remains of abandoned farm houses mark the rolling hills and woodlands of the Town of Oxford in the southern tier of upstate New York.

It is here, and in other rural communities in the state, that the most hard-fought regional environmental battle of this generation is playing out — whether to allow the contentious form of natural gas drilling, known as hydraulic fracturing or fracking.

Hydraulic fracturing entails the pressurized injection of hundreds of thousands of gallons of fresh water mixed with sand, lubricants and other chemicals deep below the surface of the earth, in order to “fracture” shale formations and release gas.

Because the shale is located below underground water sources, some scientists —including those affiliated with the City of New York — have questioned whether methane or drilling fluid could be inadvertently released and cause water contamination. Drilling proponents maintain that drilling technology and well construction continue to advance; they also say that fracked natural gas could help the U.S. obtain energy independence.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signaled that southern tier communities like Oxford may be able to decide whether to allow the practice, even as the state continues a multi-year review of the impacts of hydraulic fracturing in the gas-rich Marcellus Shale and other formations upon which much of New York sits.

This past Tuesday, the small village of Oxford — located within the town of Oxford and alongside the Chenango River between Binghamton and Utica — became the first community in Chenango County to effectively ban activities related to high-volume hydraulic fracturing. But along the way to making the decision, divisions were brought to the fore over the promise that natural gas drilling holds for reinvigorating the tepid local economy and the potential environmental hazards.

Those divisions — between residents, residents and farmers, farmers and other landowners, and even between the village and the town itself — threaten to tear apart the community.

Source: Gotham Gazette Read more

These people are talking about the water supply of 9 million New Yorkers, half the state.

You can win!

Click for the full post

On with this week’s CTWW.

  1. 1. Take a look through your fruit, vegetables and fresh items in the fridge to see what needs using up. Write it all down – it’s easier to keep track that way.
  2. Plan some of your favorite meals around the foods that need using up.
  3. If you need inspiration, write your food list on Mrs. Green’s post (you’ll find it HERE) and her community will help or … check out the recipes section at Love Food Hate Waste.
  4. Enjoy some great meals, knowing you are saving money and protecting resources.

Well, I did this yesterday, before knew about this week’s challenge.

Last piece of pork in the first round, you'll note the BBQ is made of a recycled wheel rim

Last piece of pork in the first round, you’ll note the BBQ is made of a recycled wheel rim. My house is just to the left of this shot.

My fridge is almost empty. We had a BBQ, ex and the kids came over and all the regulars at the botequim participated, some even went home and got meat from their fridges to add to the pot. BBQ started at 2pm and finished at 11pm.

We had the BBQ on the footpath that surrounds our little park. In front of the house and botequim. You’d never get away with this type of neighbourly fraternisation in the US, or other developed countries; that’s why I love it here in Brazil.

As a result, this is my stock take:

1kg frozen Alaskan pollock (two meals),

2 x inch thick pork chops, frozen,

500g mincemeat (ground beef) that gets metered out daily as cat food, got to look after Lixo.

1 jar of smoked cream cheese spread,

2 x potatoes,

2 x onions,

6 x bread rolls

So I don’t have much to play with as far as planning a menu for the next three days, in fact I have to buy to complete my menu.

Yes, these are green lemons, they are not limes

Yesterday we used all the garlic to make garlic butter, some of which is left and will get used over the next couple of days. All the meat that was bought for the BBQ was eaten, only the bread rolls above remained from the 30 bought. I used up the four lemons yesterday too, add a wonderful taste when squeezed over pork.

I don’t buy extra stuff at the supermarket; only what I will use during the week, so there is little left over, and certainly no waste. Really, the only waste I have is like when one of the potatoes goes off prematurely, that sort of thing. Tomatoes also have that habit, but they are off the menu at the moment, because they are 5x their regular price, and I refuse to buy at extortionate prices.

So, this challenge is an on going thing for me, it’s part of my routine.

See you for CTWW next week…

Now, I have to clean up. My kitchen looks like the aftermath of a hurricane, dishes and cutting boards everwhere. There was no way I was even going to consider the dishes at 11pm.

Change the World Wednesday – 6th Feb

This week has been rough so far. Sunday night I received that most dreaded of all phone calls from my brother in New Zealand; our mother had died two hours earlier (Monday morning NZT). There is a brief post on my Life blog.

bright-green-tick-mdThe first big green tick on my list.

Finally, after many false starts, I managed to get my ‘new’ fridge.

The old is relegated to the garage where, should it be needed, it will serve as a beer fridge.

The new fridge is installed, and today received its first load from the supermarket.

The Fridge, the final in the saga.

The truck

Looks terrible, but the dirt is not a lack of cleanliness, rather the remains of adhesive. The previous owners had covered it.

The limousine

The limousine

There, isn’t that a beauty? Economic power usage, frost free, no more polar bears lurking in the kitchen at night.

Reinstalled

From last week’s CTWW, I took my own advice and reinstalled Thunderbird to seriously get over the problem of ‘the cloud’.

While there are some who would call me a ‘conspiracy theorist’ I do seriously believe that cloud computing is a threat to us all and among the steps necessary for global control; while most just see it as a dandy innovation. So a new item on my list, and another green tick.

Update

My List:

#1 :: A new fridge to reduce the electricity gobbling monster I have currently. –

#2 :: Change the element in the shower head. The current one only works on Low and Off, which is good for saving energy, but the with winter only a few months away, when the water is intolerably cold, I do like a Hot shower in the winter. I have the element, it’s in the little white plastic bag in the ‘tooly’ section of my junk drawer. It’s been there for a few months now… procrastination.

#3 :: Reinstall Thunderbird and take control of my correspondence again. – 

#4 :: I haven’t got a four yet.

Click on the banner to go to the full CTWW page

Okay, on with this week’s CTWW.

This week’s challenge is taking some overt action over a very important issue – FRACKING

While fracking appears to be a wonderful solution to our/the world’s fossil fuel problem, or so the corporations and governments would have us believe, it is one of the most dire threats to us and the environment that exist.

This week, sign NRDC’s letter to President Obama asking him to protect us from dangerous fracking. You’ll find it HERE. This letter is appropriate for everyone and can be signed by people worldwide. However, if fracking takes place in your country and you’d rather contact your officials, the following information may help:

Fracking by Country
Fracking in the UK
Fracking in Canada
Fracking in Denmark
Fracking in Ireland

 

Or …

If you’d rather not sign an online letter/petition, please contact your local officials about fracking and let them know how you feel. If fracking isn’t an issue in your area, consider contacting your officials regarding an issue which concerns you about the environment.

Petitions don’t work for me, because most of the ‘log-in’ pages for petitions will not accept Brazilian the address system and my entries are rejected.

But as my part of the challenge, I urge you to take part; and the links below are to posts that I have written/posted on the subject. If you are unsure about fracking, or undecided on the issue, then have a look to get an idea of the disasterous consequences of this process from hell.

Oh you don’t know about the infernal implications, then watch this video clip of the very devil in your kitchen.

Links

Fracking Good News

We must act… NOW!

Monday Moaning

Make you Fink on Friday

Frackin’ Republicans

I haven’t written/mentioned fracking because it’s a fun thing to do. If I consider that it’s worth spending the time to open the debate, then you should too; because it’s your future, and the future of the generations to come, if the generations to come are to have a future.

 

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