Thursday, November 3, 2011

EPA and Fracking Update -- Frack and Trade -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA


March 13, 2012: Faulty wells, not fracking, causing problems -- WSJ

September 13, 2012: basics of fracking -- RBN Energy.

February 17, 2012: no evidence of groundwater contamination from fracking -- University of Texas. 

February 16, 2012: the 10 legal issues facing oil and gas industry in 2012 -- mostly involving fracking.

February 3, 2012: how to spell it.

February 1, 2012: fracking fluids must be posted on the net, Texas Railroad Commission.

January 30, 2012: Fracking 101. A great review of fracking. Unfortunately, like "global warming," facts and science no longer manner. It's all about how you vote, and how loud you can yell ... and to whom Obama listens last.

January 22, 2012: Fracking concerns overblown. Overblown? Actually, no merit whatsoever.
Two concerns: water table contamination and earthquakes.  Unless fracking chemicals defy gravity and seep upwards from two miles below the surface to water tables 500 feet below the surface..... earthquakes are the inconsequential tremors that can be picked up by highly sensitive instruments, similar to those caused by coal mining, and dissipate before they get to the surface. Unfortunately, the issue is no longer in the science arena, but in the political arena. It all depends to whom Obama listens to last, and who gives him the most money. Period. Dot.

January 9, 2012: Colorado adopts rules for release of fracking component information; praised by industry and faux-environmentalists. 

January 7, 2012: Fidel Castro opines on fracking. He agrees with the EPA: fracking is very, very dangerous. 
He said he had only recently heard about the shale gas phenomenon, which has created a drilling boom in some parts of the United States, and when he asked several acquaintances both inside and outside of Cuba about the topic, "none of them had heard a word about it."
But his opinion is worthy of an article on .... drum roll .... A few more expert opinions from Fidel and MSNBC will have another talk show host.  Fidel would be a nice lead-in to Al Sharpton.

November 27, 2011: One of the better press articles on fracking with a bit of history and a bit of science. Lots of information. The biggest takeaway: diesel is no longer used/necessary for fracking except in cold weather. That's why diesel is still a big issue for North Dakota, and for that matter, all norther tier oil basins.

History of fracking, December, 2010.

Representative Berg doesn't trust the EPA, even after the Hoeven press release.

Senator Hoeven reassures us the EPA is not pursuing to shut down fracking.

Miscellaneous Comments
Received as a comment from a reader, February 6, 2012: Law requires that steel casing extend below all known acquifers and cemented in place. Additionally, an intermediate casing string is run into the curve and cemented in place. Finally, production tubing extends to total depth. I would think it unlikely that any contamination could get through 3 layes of steel and 2 layers of cement. As Lisa Jackson told Congress, there is no evidence that fracing contaminates drinking water.

Original Post

Link here.  And this article, same subject, Bismarck Tribune.

There is nothing new in this article; it's what we were told some months ago.
Nominated by stakeholders nationwide, the EPA narrowed down the selection to seven cities to be included in the study: five retrospective studies and two prospective studies.

The retrospective case study will focus on areas in which reported drinking water contaminations have occurred due to fracking while the EPA will monitor vital aspects of the process at prospective sites.

The five retrospective case studies are located in the Raton Basin for coalbed methane, and the Bakken, Barnett and Marcellus formations for shale.
Bottom lines:
  • EPA will study fracking
  • EPA will release trial balloon in 2012; wait for blow-back, and, then
  • EPA will release final report in 2014. 
And if one parses the words, the final product in 2014 will be a "report," not new regulations.

I wonder if oil lawyers can successfully argue the difference between "fracking" and "re-fracking" if necessary? Smile.
  • Scene: courtroom
  • Date: 2015
  • EPA lawyer: So, did you frac that well when you had no permit to frack?
  • Clinton Oil and Gas Exploration executive: It all depends on what you mean by fracking?
  • EPA lawyer: Answer the question, did you frac that well without a permit?
  • Clinton O & G Exploration executive: At what point in time are you talking about? 
  • EPA lawyer: We're talking about allegations that you fracked a well without a permit.
  • Clinton O & G Exploration executive: We did not have fracking relations with that well.
  • EPA lawyer: But you don't deny that the well was fracked?
  • CO&G: We don't deny the well was fracked. But we did not have fracking relations with that well. Someone else fracked that well in 2011 at which time they had a permit. We recently re-fracked the well, and there is no permit required for re-fracking a well based on the 2014 EPA rules.The 2014 EPA report only talks about fracking.
If that's the 2015 scenario, there's going to be a lot of fracking between now and when the EPA reports in 2014.

By the way, back to the second linked article above:
This is the risk:

The new EPA study will look at the entire water lifecycle of hydraulic fracturing in shale deposits, beginning with the industry's withdrawal of huge volumes of water from rivers and streams and ending with the treatment and disposal of the tainted wastewater that comes back out of the wells after fracking. Researchers will also study well design and the impact of surface spills of fracking fluids on groundwater.

There is no way that all those trucks on the road don't affect the environment; fracking itself will be fine, but they've moved the goalposts, lowered the bar. It will be very, very easy to say that fracking industry has impact on the environment. Of course, it does. So does whooping crane killers.

They need the two to four years to complete the study, not to halt fracking, but how best to maximize "frack and trade." --- transferring oil wealth to ObamaCare and other govt programs.


  1. Now that's funny right there. haha

  2. As interesting as it is scary as it is funny.

  3. Bruce: Thought you'd enjoy this, if you haven't seen it already: Fidel Castro is now an expert on fracking!

  4. I see that it was MSNBC that posted the story; I assume "The Dickinson Press" will pick up this story.

    The question is whether Fidel will be invited to be the graduation speaker at Dickinson State University this year.

  5. Bruce- - there is a possible movie being made with a focus on the truth about fracking (not the usual fear and panic) that I hope will be made. Yes, this is a site looking for money for the production of it but none the less it looks interesting to me (I have no association with them)

    1. Posted as a stand-alone post, also, so it is easier to reach the website.