Is it just me, or does this indemnification language blow holes in industry’s mantra about how safe hydraulic fracturing is?
C. RELEASE AND INDEMNITY Customer [(Texas Keystone)] agrees to RELEASE Halliburton Group from any and all liability for any and all damages whatsoever to property of any kind owned by, in the possession of, or leased by Customer and those persons and entities Customer has the ability to bind by contract or which are co-interest owners or joint venturers with Customer. Customer also agrees to DEFEND, INDEMNIFY AND HOLD Halliburton Group HARMLESS from and against any and all liability, claims, costs, expenses, attorney fees and damages whatsoever for personal injury, illness, death, property damages and loss resulting from: loss of well control, services to control a wild well, whether underground or above the surface, reservoir or underground damage, including loss of oil, gas, other mineral substances or water, surface damage arising from underground damage, damage to or loss of the well bore; subsurface trespass or any action in the nature thereof; fire; explosion; subsurface pressure; radioactivity; and pollution and contamination and its cleanup and control.
I’m not a lawyer but here’s how I translate this language:
- Shit happens.
- We admit shit happens and that we loose control of shit.
- When shit happens
- You could die
- Your property could be damaged
- Your mineral property could be damaged
- Other people’s property could be damaged from a shit happening trespass
- There could be fire, explosions, radioactivity, etc.
- It can cause pollution and contamination.
- When shit happens, you’re fracked because you can’t do shit about it.
I’ve asked this before but it bears repeating:
If hydraulic fracturing is so damn safe, then why does industry need exemptions/loopholes from our federal environmental laws and why do they need all this indemnification?
Remember that Halliburton was fracking the BP well that is now a river of oil flowing into the ocean. They screwed up on their cementing job, which, according to this white paper, happens often. I’ve posted before about the cementing jobs. There too, industry admits that shit happens.
Note to sensitive readers: Sorry for the use of a potentially offensive term but I tried stuff and it just doesn’t seem to get the message across.
Indemnify me part 2
Or shit happens with pipelines too. =(
About Sharon Wilson
Sharon Wilson is considered a leading citizen expert on the impacts of shale oil and gas extraction. She is the go-to person whether it’s top EPA officials from D.C., national and international news networks, or residents facing the shock of eminent domain and the devastating environmental effects of natural gas development in their backyards.
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Maybe to not offend you could just say…."Halliburton happens". In this case it happened all over the Gulf. It's a good thing fracking creates all of those jobs, because all of those poor fishers are worried about having a job, not to mention all of the other downstream industries that rely on the Gulf for their income. I guess they should be happy they "took one for the team". Maybe next time they can return the favor and all of those angry shrimp will invade and cause BP/Halliburton to lose a bunch of money, oh yeah, that never happens.
The problem with Halliburton happens is that it's not just Halliburton. There is Schlumberger, BJ Frackers and about 4 or 5 other companies that frack.
Also, it's not just the fracking so frack happens doesn't really encompass it either.
Good info on this posting. Lot can go wrong with drilling and production of O&G! In all my years in the oil patch, I have never seen an equipment specification (which includes failure modes) that includes the event of the rig sinking!!
Tim Ruggiero says
When a police officer is involved in a shooting, he is placed on administrative leave until an inquiry can be conducted.
If an airline pilot has a accident, he is suspended from flying until an investigation intot he cause is conducted.
If I have too much to drink and wreck my car into another car, my license is going to be suspended for a length of time. If I repeat my act in the future, my license to drive will be revoked.
If a patient dies in surgery because the surgeon made a mistake, he will be suspended from doing any more surgery until a review board determines what went wrong.
If a gas company 'unintentionally' dumps thousands of gallons of drilling mud, spills thousands of gallons of condensate, thousands of gallons of produced water, fails to correct leaks and emissions, they get fined-but don;t have to pay the fine until after a lengthy appeal process. Int he meantime, they are issued more permits, drill more wells, and spill more shit all over the place.
If British Petroleum fails a number of safety inspections on their oil rig, they get to keep operating while they 'address' their safety issues. They defend their catastrophe by stupidly cliaming that their operations are so safe, the thought of an emergency contingency plan never occurred to them, so they don't have one. As the old saying goes, "Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail." All the while the Federal Govt and the respective states try to best control the 210,000 gallons of leaking oil, BP continues to operate the remainder of their rigs.
The fines, if any, are years away for BP, and so are the reimbursements to the tax payers who are having to foot the bill for their negligence.
The only remedy (I pray) is for multiple class action lawsuits against BP by the thousands of fishermen, businesses, affected cities and states along the coast lines.
Great post…AMEN. And, let me add, it all goes back to the govt which basically says, "You want energy? Then accept that s_ _ _
And the govt is the pronoun US-our power, our vote, and our clean up tax money! What do citizens want to do about this?
I'll bet BP will be very happy to have the lawsuits filed in Texas Courts. All they have to do is buy off a few judges and it's settled. Cheapest way out for them!!
Christine Heinrichs says
How did we ever convince ourselves that the danger of this kind of catastrophe was remote? It's lear that far from remote, it was inevitable. Oil company executives, corrupt government regulators, anyone else involved, if they don't have the decency to beg for forgiveness, need to be held accountable and sent to jail.
I am in no way trying to be a jerk here. I just wanted to give my thoughts. I'm in this industry that you discuss here daily. I supervise both drilling and completion operations for a large oil company. The reason i don't think people in the industry take your thoughts seriously is because when i read your thoughts they don't make sense from an operational stand point. Haliburton was not fracing the BP well they were cementing. Two completly seperate opeations. And the reason for all the indemnitifaction is due to the oil company designing the frac and they want no responsibly for the out come if the well does not produce as much o&g as expected. Other wise i would just sue the frac company to recoup money. All the fracing, cementing, drilling, and any other service provided follows strict guide lines from the oil company. All those companies provide suggestions/opinions on best procedures based on previous work, but don't make guaruntees due to the liability. Gross neglegence is not covered by this as you well know and lawsuits are still filed if the guide lines are not followed. Every well is different no matter how many you drill. No two react in the exact same manner. It's obvious that you care about this tremendously and have brought to light some valid points. I agree with frac water recycling, but it is not feasible. Your blog is similar to the reporting on the bp oil spill, alot of people discussing things they have no idea about and if took the time to listen instead of talking would be able to report soundly. I don't know what you do for a living but i find it hard to believe you would not be offended if i started a critque of your line of work without know how to perform the job or any kind of understanding. There are bad operators in this industry same as every other. Shortcuts have been taken. I don't take them and it raises the hair on my neck to be painted with a wide brush. There are areas of this industry that require immediate attention but people can't see them becuase that drilling rig or frac job is something they can see and blame for everything. Just the same as after the oil spill in the gulf everyone started finding tar balls they all had to be from the rig that sank, but they weren't. I think i need to start a blog of my own.
Hydraulic fracturing needs to be regulated by the EPA under the SWDA. PERIOD.
I realize that cementing and fracking are different operations. Halliburton has had issues with both operations.
Here is the reason people in industry don't what to take me seriously: It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his job depends on not understanding it.
Flow back and produced water is injected in to the ellenberger, what more is it that you want? The SWDA would make it impossible to profit from work in the Barnett Shale. It is a marginal play at best right now. Everyone quotes the amount of money oil companies make, i never see how much was spent to make it. Halliburton will follow designed plans from the oil company so you may want to look at their employer on both operations. Here is the reason industry has a problem listening to comments from you- "If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur." – Red Adair
I want full disclosure and EPA regulation under the SDWA.
Oh, so you can't afford to drill and protect water? If operators can't afford to drill in the Barnett Shale and follow regulations to protect water, then maybe they shouldn't drill. When the company profit is listed that means it is the PROFIT or the Gross minus the expenses.
If the professionals were more professional and conscientious, I would gladly retire.
What regulations to protect water are being violated? The bi product is being disposed of in approved manners. Adding this to the SWDA would just add more EPA bureaucrats to fully disclose nothing. What would you like to see in the full disclosure? I know what PROFIT is but you never see the amount RISKED to make the profit. It takes alot of money to make alot of money. Thank You Sharon, We are professional.
Not everyone is an conscientious as you appear to be. If you read my blog, you should know that.
"I believe in fray water recycling, but it is not feasible" Why not? And why not suspend all hydraulic fracturing until it is?
Jake @ Subsurface Water says
I feel like you were very accurate stuff happens they lost control and worse stuff happens. I just wish that the companies that are doing this kind of stuff would figure out how to reduce the risk or just stop and come up with another solution.