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Fracking causing earthquakes

Science has determined that fracking causes earthquakes — now it’s trying to figure out what to do next

Business Insider Australia by Shane Ferro  Mar 5 2015,

Researchers are pretty sure at this point that the increase in earthquakes in the middle of the US in recent years have been caused by fracking.

The USGS put out a news release in February that starts with this:

Large areas of the United States that used to experience few or no earthquakes have, in recent years, experienced a remarkable increase in earthquake activity that has caused considerable public concern as well as damage to structures. This rise in seismic activity, especially in the central United States, is not the result of natural processes.

You can see in the chart at right that California, the light blue line, has a noisy but relatively stable number of earthquakes every year. Nothing about the dark blue line, earthquakes detected in Oklahoma, looks stable.

The question now is what to do about it.  Read more at http://www.businessinsider.com.au/fracking-earthquake-detection-2015-3

Earthquakes from deep fluid injection in wells increasing

U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey

Coping with Earthquakes Induced by Fluid Injection. Released: 19th Feb 2015

MENLO PARK, Calif.— A paper published in Science provides a case for increasing transparency and data collection to enable strategies for mitigating the effects of human-induced earthquakes caused by wastewater injection associated with oil and gas production in the United States.  The paper is the result of a series of workshops led by scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey in collaboration with the University of Colorado, Oklahoma Geological Survey and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, suggests that it is possible to reduce the hazard of induced seismicity through management of injection activities.

Large areas of the United States that used to experience few or no earthquakes have, in recent years, experienced a remarkable increase in earthquake activity that has caused considerable public concern as well as damage to structures. This rise in seismic activity, especially in the central United States, is not the result of natural processes.

Instead, the increased seismicity is due to fluid injection associated with new technologies that enable the extraction of oil and gas from previously unproductive reservoirs. These modern extraction techniques result in large quantities of wastewater produced along with the oil and gas. The disposal of this wastewater by deep injection occasionally results in earthquakes that are large enough to be felt, and sometimes damaging. Deep injection of wastewater is the primary cause of the dramatic rise in detected earthquakes and the corresponding increase in seismic hazard in the central U.S.  Read more at http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=4132#.VSRCQWc5DX6

Obama administration unveils new fracking rules.

by David Jackson, March 20, 2015

The Obama administration said Friday it is tightening rules on fracking with regulations that it says will preserve the oil and gas extraction method while protecting water supplies and the environment.

The new rules, which take effect in June, require oil and gas companies to disclose the chemicals they use in hydraulic fracturing and to build large barriers to shield nearby water sources.

Environmental groups complimented the new rules on fracking, though some said the administration should simply ban the practice.

Members and supporters of the oil and gas industries denounced the new regulations and said they will damage a booming energy industry. Some immediately filed suit against the administration.

In announcing the new rules, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said current well-drilling regulations are more than 30 years old, “and they simply have not kept pace with the technical complexities of today’s hydraulic fracturing operations.”  Read more at http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/03/20/obama-interior-department-fracking-rules-sally-jewell/25101133/

UK Chief Scientist New Report Released – warns against fracking

The Guardian UK

Fracking risk compared to thalidomide and asbestos in Walport report

Historic innovations that have been adopted too hastily with grave unforeseen impacts provide cautionary examples for potential side effects of fracking, says report by government’s chief scientist Mark Walport.

Fracking carries potential risks on a par with those from thalidomide, tobacco and asbestos, warns a report produced by the government’s chief scientific adviser.

Read more at http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/nov/28/fracking-risk-compared-to-thalidomide-and-asbestos-in-walport-report?CMP=share_btn_fb

GasField Free Communities

Wattle Range Council Road declared Gasfield and Mining Free

Wattle Range Council Road declared Gasfield and Mining Free

Communities have begun to stand up – and are Locking The Gate in the hundreds! Through a comprehensive and truly democratic survey process, communities are declaring themselves ‘Gasfield Free’.

Local roads throughout the Limestone Coast are now displaying “Gasfield Free” road signs sending a clear message of “Lock the Gate”, “Lock the Road” & ”Protect the Region” from industrial gasfield activities. Communities simply do not want this in their backyard.

Faced with the extraordinary capture of our governments by the mining industry, the region is witnessing a historic alliance of our local councils, mayors, farmers, conservationists, lawyers, doctors, teachers, parents, students and retirees who are saying no and locking their gates. Together, they are saying it’s time to protect existing agricultural industries, our land, water and health from the destructive force of the proposed open cut mining and gasfield projects in the Limestone Coast.

Local communities who are locking their gate, locking their road and protecting their region are the building blocks of a strong community campaign. Knowing what is at stake, the “Lock the Gate” strategy is providing pathways for more people to join in the movement and is now spreading across the country and the world, inspiring communities everywhere.

The District Council of Robe was the first council in the Limestone Coast to call on our State Government to halt unconventional gas mining in our region and since then all seven local councils have banded together to ask the State Government for a moratorium on unconventional gas mining, buffer zones and landholder approval prior to mining. So it is only appropriate that communities in the District Council of Robe will be the first to present their “Gasfield Free” declarations to the Mayor of Robe at a ceremony on Saturday 11th October.

All are welcome to this historic event.

A Rational Fear: you’ll fracking love it (comedy video)

Need a bit of a laugh with all this worrying fracking talk going on?

Watch this video for a lighthearted look at what is going on in our country

comedyvideo

Dubious claims don’t fool LCPA

MINING companies like to tar everyone objecting to proposed unconventional gas developments in the Lower and Mid South East as “greenies and professional activists”, according to chairman of the Limestone Coast Protection Alliance Will Legoe.

But the sheep and cattle producer and grapegrower says the membership of his organisation – which held its first meeting in November with 11 members – tells a different story.

“We now have 270 members, with 50 per cent of them farmers,” he said.

“And it’s growing every day, mainly through word-of-mouth, although we did attend the (SE) field days.”

Legoe says when people ring him, all he can do is point them to the relevant websites and documentaries.

“People in the region are mostly very conservative – but not on this issue,” he said.

“And they come from all walks of life – a big cross-section.

“They become more educated about the issues and build their knowledge, and this has added to the groundswell of support (for LCPA).”

Legoe had attended Beach Energy information sessions and others organised independently to discuss the possible impacts of unconventional gas mining.

He became concerned and decided to become active in the debate after assessing the ‘evidence’ presented and possible ramifications of developments.

“I have to shake my head when Beach Energy says we are ignoring the science – there is plenty of science saying the opposite (to the company),” Legoe said.

“The possibility of water contamination is a primary cause of concern, but there would be huge lifestyle and social pressures.”

If the March state election had been 12 to 18 months later, Legoe believes the notice of motions carried by SELGA calling for a moratorium on unconventional gas mining would have had more sway on politicians.

“I certainly hope we can still have some influence (on SE politicians) as our numbers grow,” he said.

* Full report in Stock Journal, July 3, 2014 issue.

State Mining Tax ‘holiday’ Alarm

Anne Daw – who serves on the Rountable for Unconventional Gas Projects – described the inclusion of a ‘royalty holiday’ in Thursday’s state budget announcement as appalling.

Under the announcement, companies would be given a FIVE YEAR ‘holiday’ from royalty payments to stimulate developments, but they would still need to be paid following the grace period.

“It’s now not only the community that doesn’t want this activity here, it’s the councils who represent the community as well”, Ms Daw said.

“This should not be happening in the South East.”

Ms Daw said while she applauded SELGA for taking a stand, Thursday’s announcement was proof it was not being heard.

“SELGA has sent a clear message to the government” she said.

“What a log of people don’t realise is the whole of the Lower South East is already mapped out for unconventional gas exploration..”

Click here to read the full article in the Penola Pennant

Overwhelming proof that fracking contaminates water

We’ve seen it before (like in Gasland Part II), scientific evidence proves that drilling and fracking contaminated ground water, but then the industry swoops in with their misinformation campaigns and pressure on regulatory agencies, and suddenly there’s a new set of “facts” to debate.

Our video of the week shows that the Lispky family is still living deep in Gasland, where fracking science denial déjà vu has unfortunately become the way of life.

Watch our Video – Scientists: Tests prove fracking to blame for flaming Parker County wells by News 8’s Brett Shipp

We reported on Steve and Shyla Lipsky’s case in Gasland Part II, and the industry responded with vicious and personal attacks against the facts and the Lipsky family.

In our Video, Brett Shipp reports that the science proves not only do the Lipsky’s have dangerous levels of methane in their water, but also that an isotopic analysis proves the gas in Lipsky’s well is an almost identical match to the gas being drilled for in the area.

The scientists interviewed say these tests prove that fracking is to blame for the contamination of the Lipsky’s water.

But the Texas Railroad Commission is refusing to look at the scientific evidence, rather claiming that it is inconclusive as to where the gas is coming from.

The industry is also desperately trying to deny the facts, claiming the Lipsky case is a fraud.

But as Julie Dermansky reports in this great piece on DeSmog Blog, the industry doesn’t have a leg to stand on.

Help us share the science that proves fracking contaminates ground water

P.S. If you haven’t seen the Lipsky’s story yet, get your copy of Gasland Part II.

And if you haven’t seen Gasland Part I yet, click here

Protecting our Foodbowl, water and tourism from mining – Rally 2nd August 2014

Meet 9:45am at Parliament House and then 10am march to Victoria Square.

StepsofParliament

South Australia has only 4.6% agricultural land outside of pastoral areas. Our farming production areas are being invaded by shale gas exploration in the South East of SA, mineral exploration and proposed mining for iron ore, copper and other minerals on Eyre Peninsula and Yorke Peninsula. Plus oil and gas exploration licences are off shore near Kangaroo Island, only around 10 km off our SA coastline.

These exploration and proposed projects are a major threat to our groundwater aquifers, surface water, soil and air. We want to maintain our clean, green food bowl, water and tourism which should be held in trust for generations to come. Currently, land owners in South Australia have virtually NO rights to say NO to mining and petroleum exploration on their properties, even if they don’t want it. This is unfair! We want the laws changed to protect our food bowl.

On Saturday, 2nd August, a rally and march will be held in Adelaide to help support and protect our agricultural, viticultural and ocean communities. We strongly urge everyone in rural areas as well as city areas to come and join us.

9.45 a.m. we will be meeting on the steps of Parliament House. Some short speeches will commence at 10 a.m. followed by a march to Victoria Square. Some short speeches will take place also at Victoria Square.   People are encouraged to stay for a picnic lunch or purchase food from nearby.

Please Note: Adelaide City Council CAN NOT park farm vehicles over 8 tonnes.  Please bring placards instead.

There are buses organised to take people from the South East up to Adelaide for the day.
 
 

Find out more about the Rally by clicking here to go to facebook

Contact Anne Daw for more information annedaw@bigpond.com

saveourfoodbowlrally

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