Garrett County and Natural Gas - Risks and Benefits

A selection of categorized links to allow one to assess the risks and benefits of gas development in Garrett Conty.

Garrett County Montage

Fracking in Foreign Countries

The links given here are articles discussing fracking in countries other than the US.

- 1088 - [January 21, 2015] - BBC News Lancashire, BBC News Lancashire - "Cuadrilla Lancashire fracking application 'should be refused'"
"A key report has said fracking should not go ahead at two Lancashire sites.
The council's report recommended the Little Plumpton application, for a site north of Preston New Road, should be turned down due to concerns over noise, which would "unnecessarily and unacceptably" affect neighboring properties.
"On the issues of public health - other than noise - on the issues of air quality, seismicity or earth tremors, the council has concluded that none of those are reasons to refuse this application."
- 1089 - [June 27, 2013] - BBC News UK, BBC News UK - "What is fracking and why is it controversial?"
"Fracking is the process of drilling down into the earth before a high-pressure water mixture is directed at the rock to release the gas inside. Water, sand and chemicals are injected into the rock at high pressure which allows the gas to flow out to the head of the well.
The process is carried out vertically or, more commonly, by drilling horizontally to the rock layer. The process can create new pathways to release gas or can be used to extend existing channels.
The first is that fracking uses huge amounts of water that must be transported to the fracking site, at significant environmental cost. The second is the worry that potentially carcinogenic chemicals used may escape and contaminate groundwater around the fracking site. The industry suggests pollution incidents are the results of bad practice, rather than an inherently risky technique.
There are also worries that the fracking process can cause small earth tremors. Two small earthquakes of 1.5 and 2.2 magnitude hit the Blackpool area in 2011 following fracking.
Finally, environmental campaigners say that fracking is simply distracting energy firms and governments from investing in renewable sources of energy, and encouraging continued reliance on fossil fuels.
Fracking allows drilling firms to access difficult-to-reach resources of oil and gas. In the US it has significantly boosted domestic oil production and driven down gas prices. It is estimated to have offered gas security to the US and Canada for about 100 years, and has presented an opportunity to generate electricity at half the CO2 emissions of coal."
- 1091 - [October 23, 2014] - RT Question More., RT Question More. - "Massive gas pipeline inferno shakes German town (VIDEOS)"
"A gas pipeline blast in Germany has killed one person and injured 11 others. The conflagration resulted in 200-meter tall flames that were captured from all angles by local residents who were lucky enough to escape the inferno.
...At least 25 buildings were also damaged in the blast. The fire left a crater 10 meters in diameter and 5 to 6 meters deep."
- 1092 - [January 21, 2015] -, Jim Dunton - "Doubts raised over fracking jobs boom"
"The number of jobs that proponents of shale-gas extraction say the industry will create in the North West are twice as high as practical evidence from the US indicates, according to a new report.
Environmental group Friends of the Earth said research showed that job booms sparked by the process, also known as ‘fracking’, tended to be short-lived and that investing in the renewables sector and energy efficiency provided more employment.
But a peer-reviewed analysis of job creation from shale gas production in the US found that 18.5 jobs were created per billion cubic feet of gas production. Based on this, each well pad would create around 400 jobs at peak.
Such overstatement reflects the US experience where actual job creation from the Marcellus Shale, one of the largest US shale fields, has been less than one-seventh of that claimed in one industry-funded study."
- 1182 - [January 27, 2015] - BBC News - UK Politics, BBC News - "Lib Dem Tessa Munt quits as Vince Cable aide over fracking"
"Lib Dem MP Tessa Munt has resigned as a parliamentary aide to Business Secretary Vince Cable after voting against the government on fracking.
Ms Munt defied the party whip to support a rebel amendment calling for a moratorium on the extraction technique.
The Wells MP initially said she intended to remain in her role despite breaching the principle of collective ministerial responsibility."
- 1190 - [January 28, 2015] - BBC News Scotland Politics, BBC News - "Block on fracking in Scotland announced by minister"
"Ministers will carry out new work on the environmental and health implications of the controversial gas drilling technique.
Full control over fracking is due to be devolved to Scotland after May's general election.
In the meantime, consent for unconventional oil and gas developments will be rejected on planning grounds."
- 1311 - [February 4, 2015] - NoTricksZone, Fred F. Mueller - "The coming age of power cannibalism…Germany on the verge of committing energy suicide"
"German politicians see themselves as the saviors of our climate. In the early 1990s German politicians started the policies that ultimately culminated in the “Energiewende”, which aims to eliminate nuclear power generation and some 76% of the fossil fuel power generation. By 2050 some 80% of power generation should come from “renewable” green sources such as wind, solar, biomass, waste incineration and hydro. Since the volatile sources of wind and solar power will have to contribute the lion’s share, politicians reluctantly concede 20% of the energy coming from reliable fossil power sources."
- 1312 - [December 16, 2014] - Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT), Marita Noon - "Germany’s “energy transformation:” unsustainable subsidies and an unstable system. Is avoiding shame worth the high cost of renewable energy?"
"Perhaps when Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel was a child, she attended a party and was the only one who came without a present, or she was wearing inappropriate attire—and the embarrassment she felt haunts her to this day. That’s how psychodynamic psychology (Freud) might explain her December 3 decision to spend more money on Germany’s failing energy experiment to avoid, as Reuters puts it: “the embarrassment of missing her government’s goal of a 40% reduction of emissions by 2020.”"
- 1313 - [July 7, 2013] - Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT), Larry Bell - "Subsidies to wind and solar dwarf those to “big oil” — but wait! There’s more!"
"One of the big applause lines in President Obama’s recent Georgetown “climate action plan” pitch declaring an all-out EPA war on coal and it’s fossil cousins said: “And because billions of your tax dollars continue to still subsidize some of the most profitable corporations in the history of the world, my budget once again calls for Congress to end the tax breaks for big oil companies, and invest in the clean-energy companies that will fuel our future.”
This is hardly a new strategy theme. The familiar take-away line is that even more regulation is essential to bludgeon energy producers and consumers to abandon climate-ravaging fossil fuels in favor of heavily taxpayer-subsidized “alternatives”… and eliminate that Big Oil tax break subsidy advantage."
- 1316 - [FEBRUARY 3, 2015] - National Review Online, Tom Rogan - Daily Telegraph - "Russia’s War on Fracking"
"Threatened by low oil prices, Putin is covertly supporting anti-frackers and spreading propaganda.
As a senior archivist for the KGB’s foreign-intelligence directorate, Vasili Mitrokhin had access to a treasure trove of information. He unveiled those secrets after defecting to Britain in 1992.
Today, Russia is waging another active-measures campaign. But this time Russia’s target is fracking. The facts are clear. Fracking, which is revolutionizing energy politics, offers a cheap, new source of global power. But that’s not all. In offering Europe independence from Russian energy exports, fracking poses a direct challenge to Russia. Because Putin depends for revenue on his oil and natural gas-exports, fracking’s cheaper alternative presents him with a big problem. Indeed, lower oil prices are already driving Russia’s economy into recession."
- 1317 - [February 5, 2015] - Bishop Hill, Bishop Hill - "The sheep in Wales"
"With the Scottish Government having made its absurd - if understandable - decision to put a moratorium on shale gas developments, lawmakers in Cardiff have noted the benefits to their own careers and have followed suit."
- 1359 - [NA] - Southampton University, Ian West - "Petroleum Geology of the South of England"
"Introduction - Geology of the Wessex Coast of Southern England.A very interesting site that gives lots of information about the interpretation of the local geology. "
- 1360 - [2015] - CCPA - Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Ben Parfitt - "Fracking for shale gas in BC"
"Today we released a report on "fracking" In northeastern BC: a controversial process that gas companies are using to extract natural gas from deeply buried shale formations. The provincial government supports the industry with millions of dollars in subsidies, in spite of the health and environmental risks of fracking — and while the companies profit, British Columbians aren't getting much in return."
- 1361 - [November 2011] - CCPA - Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Ben Parfitt - "Fracking Up Our Water, Hydro Power and Climate - BC's Reckless Pursuit of Shale Gas"
"The BC government has focused on the oil and gas industry as a key source of employment and prosperity, which may leave the impression that significant economic benefits outweigh environmental concerns. However, in 2007, oil, gas and mining accounted for less than one per cent of provincial employment, but nearly one third of industrial GHG emissions.
As natural gas prices have dropped, so have public revenues from royalties. Yet in the face of persistently low gas prices (due in part to a glut of available gas in North America due to upward revisions in estimates of available shale gas) the government continues to offer royalty breaks and infrastructure credits to the industry, which actually serve to lower public returns. The province and industry are both banking on that changing, should gas exports proceed, because the prices paid for gas in Asian markets are substantially higher than in North America.
The short-term gains in future revenues and jobs, however, ought to be weighed against the considerable environmental costs, begging the question: Why is BC subsidizing a polluting industry instead of developing a true green jobs plan?"
- 1362 - [December 2013] - Department of Energy and Climate Change, Department of Energy and Climate Change - "Developing Onshore Shale Gas and Oil – Facts about ‘Fracking’"
"Shale gas and oil could provide the UK with greater energy security, growth, jobs and tax revenue. The Government is encouraging safe and environmentally sound exploration to determine our shale potential. The UK has a strong regulatory regime for exploratory activities but we continuously look to improve it."
- 1365 - [February 2014] - Department of Energy and Climate Change, Department of Energy and Climate Change - "Fracking UK shaelcO water"
"Hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, is a technique used in the extraction of gas and oil from ‘shale’ rock formation s by injecting water at high pressure. This guide explains why some people worry this technique may use too much water or pollute it , and what government and others will do to manage the risks."
- 1366 - [June 22, 2012] - The Royal Society, The Royal Society and the Royal Academy of Engineering - "Final report - Shale gas extraction"
"The UK Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Sir John Beddington FRS, asked the Royal Society and the Royal Academy of Engineering to review the scientific and engineering evidence and consider whether the risks associated with hydraulic fracturing (often termed ‘fracking’) as a means to extract shale gas could be managed effectively in the UK."
- 1368 - [November 18, 2013] - The CommonSenseCanadian, Damien Gillis and Will Koop - "Talisman frackwater pit leaked for months, kept from public"
"A pit storing contaminated fracking water in northeast BC was leaking into the surrounding soil and groundwater for up to six months before owner Talisman formally notified the Oil and Gas Commission and undertook clean-up efforts, The Common Sense Canadian has learned.
One of five lined pits connected to Talisman’s Farrell Creek operations north of Hudson’s Hope, referred to as Pond A, suffered a puncture through both of its protective layers, causing toxic fluids to begin escaping into the environment. The pits are used to store “produced water” from previous fracks to be reused later as part of a program to cut back on freshwater use. Ironically, this practice has now threatened local groundwater due to the ruptured liners.
It has proven difficult to obtain straight answers from the regulator or company, but through a series of recent communications, we have been able to piece together a rough timeline of the incident."
- 1370 - [NA] - IFP Energie Novelles, IFP Energie Novelles - "NA"
"An animation of the whole gas development process."
- 1396 - [October 22, 2014] - RT Question More., Peter Andrews | Reuters - "Shale gas: boom or bubble?"
"Countries are apparently eager to inflate the size of their shale gas reserves to attract investment, but the actual figures are spectacularly off.
Millions of dollars are being shelled out for shale exploration by countries across Europe, often to confirm what they knew all along- there is no shale gas.
Romania has been forced to face the facts when it comes to the fracking, or lack thereof. It had hoped to seal a lucrative deal to extract 1.4 trillion cubic meters of gas, which has now turned to out to be zero. "
- 1463 - [October 30, 2014] - The Independent, Steve Connor - "'Dangerously high' levels of airborne carcinogens found at US fracking sites"
"Dangerously high levels of cancer-causing chemicals have been discovered in the air around “fracking” sites in the United States - highlighting the need for tougher regulations to control oil and gas extraction in Britain, scientists said.
Levels of benzene, formaldehyde and hydrogen sulphide were many times above the US’s air pollution limits and were detected within residential areas near to fracking wells drilled across five different states, the researchers said."
- 1512 - [March 19, 2015] -, Nicole Sagener translated from German Erika Körner - "Fracking costs outweigh benefits for Germany and Europe, study says"
"For only a ten year supply of energy, fracking in Europe would contaminate drinking water, cause severe environmental damage and create vast industrial landscapes, says a study on fracking, as the German government pushes to legalize the controversial extraction method.
The environmental impact of shale gas extraction in Germany and Europe are in no way proportionate to the raw materials gained using this method of drilling, a new study argues."
- 1513 - [March 20, 2015] - Farmers Guardian, Ben Briggs - "NFU Mutual clarifies its position on fracking insurance"
"NFU Mutual has sought to clarify its stance on insurance related to fracking after accusations on social media it would not pay out for incidents related to the controversial gas extraction process.
A flurry of activity on Twitter claimed the insurer had removed coverage for fracking-related damage from its policies.
A Tweet from Jamie Kelsey-Fry said: “New exclusion added to farmers’ insurance policies @NFU mutual will not cover #fracking.”
But the insurer hit back.
It said a farm not involved in fracking but which suffered damage as a result of the process, for example shale gas extraction on a neighbouring property caused building subsidence, would be covered. So too would other rural properties in the area who insured with it.
However, any farmer who had chosen to make a commercial decision to be involved in fracking would not be covered for damage incurred as a result of the process."
- 1582 - [March 2, 2015] - Quartz, Liam Herringshaw - "Whatever happened to the great European fracking boom?"
"The European shale gas boom has not materialized in the way that some were predicting. We are a far cry from the situation a few years ago, where interest in fracking in Europe was gathering pace on the back of the successes in North America.
The UK appeared to be leading the way, with drilling activities in northwest and southeast England. Companies started snapping up exploration licenses right across the continent, and prospects from Scandinavia to the Urals found themselves being eagerly appraised.
So what’s happened, and what do the prospects for Europe look like now?"
- 1808 - [NA] - Mortgage Finance Gazette, Joanne Atkin - "Fracking will hit house values, warn estate agents"
"Estate agents in areas targeted by fracking companies are reporting concerns from prospective buyers over looming shale developments, with some sales already falling through as a result.
According to a survey of 60 estate agents operating close to potential fracking sites in West Sussex, Manchester, and Lancashire, the controversial technique is likely to wipe tens of thousands of pounds off the values of nearby properties and make homes harder to sell."