Texas Sharon's Bluedaze http://www.texassharon.com Fracking News Thu, 30 Jul 2015 14:28:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.3 Recent fracking news roundup http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/30/recent-fracking-news-roundup/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/30/recent-fracking-news-roundup/#respond Thu, 30 Jul 2015 14:01:02 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15316 Recent fracking news roundup all in one place. I can’t stay on top of the news like I did in the past because there is too much and I’m way busy. So sometimes I have gather it up and dump it in all at once. This news ain’t pretty. Frackquakes When I first started blogging […]

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Recent fracking news roundup all in one place.

I can’t stay on top of the news like I did in the past because there is too much and I’m way busy. So sometimes I have gather it up and dump it in all at once. This news ain’t pretty.

Frackquakes

When I first started blogging about fracking, the industry would go nuts because I didn’t misspell fracking as fracing or frac’cing like they did. Fracking has a “k” because Lisa Sumi put it there. Now everyone spells it correctly, even the industry. Thanks Lisa.

Therefore: frackquakes. They hate that even more than the “k” but it’s too late to stop it. That’s kind of like the frackquakes fracking causes.

Frackquakes are getting bigger and more frequent.

Three of Monday’s quakes measured above a magnitude 4.0, with a 4.5 earthquake centered just north of Crescent, roughly 45 miles (72 km) north of Oklahoma City, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said.

The largest tremor, logged a “significant earthquake” by the USGS, could be felt as far away as Wichita, Kansas, about 160 miles north, broadcaster KOTV reported. Reuters via Yahoo

The people who live in the area feel terrorized by fracking. One lady said it was like being assaulted. Watch these heartbreaking videos of them talking about what it’s like to live with frackquakes.

!!!

The Fracking Industry Has Changed Earthquake Patterns in Northeast BC

Yikes! There have been more than 1000 frackquakes in Northern BC ranging from in magnitude from 1.0 to 4.3. These frackquakes have changed the the flow of groundwater in the region and caused “migration of gases such as methane, radon and carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.” But due to limited monitoring the industry and government lack understanding of how.

The article discusses frackquakes caused by waste injection and frackquakes caused by fracking injection. The article is packed with information that won’t make you sleep easier if you live in a fracking zone.

U.S. frackquakes are mentioned and how the fracking put sdams at risk.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has expressed a number of concerns with hydraulic fracturing. The agency says industry-triggered earthquakes could crack a dam, and that the transmission of frack fluids through natural faults could erode a dam’s embankment.

Industry-made fractures in rock cannot always be controlled and tend to find the path of least resistance. Since 2010, hydraulic fractures have “communicated” with neighbouring well sites and drilling pads in northern B.C. more than 107 times.

!!!

More studies about how fracking hurts babies.

Pennsylvania Study Links Fracking to Health Hazards in Fetuses, Infants, and Young Children

The study found that heavily-fracked counties have

  • 13.9% greater infant mortality,
  • 23.6% greater perinatal mortality,
  • 3.4% more low-weight births,
  • 12.4% more premature births,
  • 35.1% more cancer in children ages zero to four.

Dirty Air Correlates with Lower Grades in Texas Schoolchildren

“This is an interesting paper that deals with a serious problem affecting millions of children around the world,” said Dr. Lilian Calderón-Garcidueñas, a researcher who studies air pollution and health effects at the University of Montana in an email.

These exposures start in utero, so the detrimental effects upon the developing brain are affecting the embryo and the fetus and continue once the child is exposed to the outside environment,” said Calderón-Garcidueñas, who was not involved in the study.

The toxins they measured are the same ones we see associated with fracking.

  • benzene
  • arsenic
  • lead
  • mercury
  • hydrochloric acid
  • toluene
  • vinyl bromide
  • xylenes
  • diesel particulate matter

Fracking has contaminated water

DeSmogBlog has a great analysis of what’s hidden in the EPA’s fracking water study. I haven’t finished reading it yet because it is dense with great tweetable nuggets like this:

EPA couldn’t say with certainty how many fracked wells there are in the US, nor could it say how much wastewater was produced from fracking. They could say that overall, the oil and gas industry is producing billions of gallons of wastewater a day – hundreds of billions of gallons per year – but couldn’t say how much of that was tied to fracking.

You know how industry is always saying that fracking couldn’t possibly contaminate water because it happens thousands of feet below where our groundwater is? Well, that’s not exactly true, especially in certain states like Texas, where they have shallow frack jobs. Since fractures ofter go astray for 2000′ or more, this is another bad idea from the frackers.

A new study about fracking and water contamination:Depth Matters: Fracking and Drinking Water Contamination.

And that’s it for this installment of the Fracking News Roundup.

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What is the true intent of HB40? http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/29/what-is-the-true-intent-of-hb40/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/29/what-is-the-true-intent-of-hb40/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 19:18:03 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15306   What is the true intent of HB40?   Dear, Dear Readers, Please pay attention because there will be a test at the end over the true intent of HB40. Industry spent $21.3 million to buy Texas politicians during the 2014 election. These legal bribes were necessary to get legislators on board with stripping away […]

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What is the true intent of HB40?

 

Dear, Dear Readers,

Please pay attention because there will be a test at the end over the true intent of HB40.

Industry spent $21.3 million to buy Texas politicians during the 2014 election. These legal bribes were necessary to get legislators on board with stripping away from their constituents a 100-year Texas tradition of concurrent regulation of oil and gas by cities and state. Industry said HB40 was necessary because they needed statewide regulatory consistency and no patchwork quilt regulations. There is a record of legislative intent of HB40 in abundant quotes:

However, the parties contend that recently adopted municipal regulations create a patchwork of inconsistent regulation that undermines the safe and efficient production of oil and gas. H.B. 40 seeks to ensure consistent statewide regulation of the oil and gas industry. HB40 AUTHOR’S / SPONSOR’S STATEMENT OF INTENT of HB40

Darby said his bill would do away with the “patchwork of inconsistent regulation that undermines” the future economic potential of the state’s most valuable natural resource.

“In the absence of this bill, a statewide patchwork of oil and gas regulation is likely,” Darby said. Source

HB 40 promotes consistency, fairness and lawful use of local ordinances by clarifying the responsibilities of cities and the state for regulating the oil and gas industry.  Todd Staples, TXOGA

“I think that it’s going to provide more certainty and consistent behavior by operators,” said Burleson, managing partner in Burleson in Houston. “We think it’s a very good bill.” Texas Lawyer

This law ensures that Texas avoids a patchwork quilt of regulations that differ from region to region, differ from county to county or city to city,” said Governor Abbott. Source

The Texas Oil and Gas Association praised the bill, saying it would prevent cities from adopting a patchwork of local regulations that could slow down the state’s drilling boom and threaten its energy-reliant economy. EnergyWire

However, the parties contend that recently adopted municipal regulations create a patchwork of inconsistent regulation that undermines the safe and efficient production of oil and gas. C.S.H.B. 40 seeks to ensure consistent statewide regulation of the oil and gas industry. HB40 Bill Analysis

Through hours of hearings, Drew Darby (the author of HB 40) and other legislators honed a message about the purpose of HB 40: We need regulatory certainty! Oh, how horribly the industry would suffer if it were subjected to a patchwork quilt of local laws! Frack Free Denton

Recent social media exchanges between Steve Everley and me hinted that consistency is not what industry is after in HB40. When asked for an acceptable setback distance, he said that it depends on geology. When pressed further for a specific setback distance in the Barnett Shale geology, he said it would depend on where in the Barnett Shale. And so the conversation continued.

Therefore last night’s testimony at the Denton City Council meeting by Ed Ireland was not a total surprise to me.

The video is here. Ed Ireland starts at  7:35:17. But you don’t have to watch it because I transcribed the pertinent part.

Gregory: Is it accurate that commercially reasonable might change based on what your able to sell it [oil and gas] for?

Ireland: I think that’s one component but there are a lot of components of that calculation and it’s going to vary, not only by that but, by municipality. So what might be commercially reasonable in one municipality may be totally different from another. So there is not going to be a statewide standard about commercially reasonable.

Gregory: Wha, explain that please.

Ireland: Well, for example, a setback requirement in one city might, in a court, be deemed to be commercially reasonable but that same setback could be different in another municipality, or a commercially reasonable setback could be different in another municipality.

Gregory: …Simply because of the opinion of the court? Or because of the…

Ireland: …Because of the entire situation. I mean, everything that will be considered to go into that calculation for that particular area. That’s why HB40 did not specify any kind of a statewide standard because it can vary.

Gregory: One of the other things imposed upon us by the state … that it’s commercially reasonable by a reputable and prudent operator. Is that an acknowledgement that all operators aren’t necessarily prudent and good players?

Ireland: (Defers answer to attorneys. Note: he is paid by operators regardless of their standard for operating.)

joking about deflection and laughter

Hawkins: I’m trying to understand what you just said. If it’s found that Fort Worth’s [ordinance] is commercially viable, and let’s say Denton had the exact same ordinance, are you saying that it could possibly be found that it wouldn’t be found commercially viable here just because it’s in a different place?

Ireland: Well there again, I would defer to the attorneys on that because, but that’s my understanding, is that it’s not necessarily one standard that would apply in south Texas or in Denton or anywhere else. It’s the total circumstance of a situation is going to have to be considered and that’s going to be litigated or adjudicated or whatever the proper term is.

Hawkins: I don’t know how that makes sense to me. Thank you though.

Briggs: My sentiments, exactly. I don’t really understand that too much. So you’re saying that most of these definitions are more than likely going to have to be determined in court. And that could mean something different for each city. Is that what I’m hearing?

Ireland: That’s my understanding but, again, I think that entire argument is the legal side of it and [Uh oh! I think I’ve really stepped in it here!] I’m really not qualified to …

This is a multiple choice test on the intent of HB40:

What is the true intent of HB40?

  1. HB40 because patchwork quilt fracking ordinances are too hard.
  2. HB40 because we demand patchwork quilt fracking ordinances.
  3. HB40 because we will frack where and how we want.
  4. HB40 because we will sue you for everything.
  5. HB40 because trial attorneys need more work.
  6. HB40 because all of the above.

 

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URGENT: Fracking violates human rights, goes on trial http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/26/fracking-violates-human-rights-goes-on-trial/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/26/fracking-violates-human-rights-goes-on-trial/#comments Sun, 26 Jul 2015 18:59:09 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15299 There is no doubt that fracking violates human rights. Don’t miss this opportunity to provide testimony on how your human rights have been violated by fracking. An internationally-recognised tribunal is to examine whether some countries have breached basic human rights by allowing fracking. “This PPT is hugely significant because it will make important decisions on […]

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There is no doubt that fracking violates human rights. Don’t miss this opportunity to provide testimony on how your human rights have been violated by fracking.

An internationally-recognised tribunal is to examine whether some countries have breached basic human rights by allowing fracking.

“This PPT is hugely significant because it will make important decisions on a key international issue: the uncontrolled spread of unconventional resource extraction.

“Fracking has taken place around the world in spite of serious public opposition and with large numbers of people alleging that their human rights have been ignored by those who supposedly represent them. This PPT aims to consider those allegations in an even-handed and judicial way.”

A coalition of human rights lawyers and academics has been granted an opportunity to put fracking on trial at hearings to be held in the UK and the United States. Other countries are encouraged to hold preliminary mini tribunals.

This is your opportunity to submit testimony on how fracking violates human rights. Are you tired of having your rights violated and trampled on for the rights of the minority?

The hearings on fracking are scheduled for 2017 and evidence will be invited from across the world. It will include:

  • Personal witness statement
  • Expert testimony on the practices and impacts of fracking
  • Findings from preliminary hearings in other countries
  • Peer-reviewed research
  • Academic reports
  • Human Rights Impact Assessments

******

SUBMIT YOUR WITNESS STATEMENT HERE.

******

Resources for preliminary human rights work on fracking.

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Stop letting the 2% Texas mineral owners bully the 98% surface owners http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/23/stop-letting-the-2-texas-mineral-owners-bully-the-98-surface-owners/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/23/stop-letting-the-2-texas-mineral-owners-bully-the-98-surface-owners/#comments Fri, 24 Jul 2015 04:28:59 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15266 Imagine my surprise to learn that only 2% of Texans own minerals rights. The rights of 2% of Texans override the rights of 98% of Texans. Tricia Davis who is the president of the Texas Royalty Council wrote an essay supporting HB40, the bill written by former Exxon attorney, Shannon Ratliff, that stripped away a […]

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Imagine my surprise to learn that only 2% of Texans own minerals rights.

The rights of 2% of Texans override the rights of 98% of Texans.

Tricia Davis who is the president of the Texas Royalty Council wrote an essay supporting HB40, the bill written by former Exxon attorney, Shannon Ratliff, that stripped away a 100 year tradition of concurrent regulation of the oil and gas industry by state and cities. You need to read it all but here is an excerpt:

Carefully constructed policy is also important to protect property rights associated with oil and gas development.  More than 570,000 Texans are mineral owners with a Constitutional right to develop their minerals. Source

The U.S. Census Bureau puts Texas population at almost 30 million. To make the math easy, let’s round up the mineral owners to 600,000 mineral owners in Texas. That’s 2% of the population.

Davis is quick to point out that many of the 2% are not wealthy but are regular Texans who depend on their royalties to make ends meet, send children to college and pay for medical bills. In public testimony, I’ve heard her include financing retirement in the benefits of mineral ownership.

Gosh, that sounds a lot like what regular Texans in the 98% do with their private property. A home is normally the largest investment a person makes. Many people make home improvements hoping to sell for a profit so they can use it to make ends meet, send children to college and pay for medical bills and finance retirement.

Mineral owners threaten families’ health and their property value.

Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy found that the value of homes near compressor stations decline by as much as 50 percent.

This video shows a compressor station release of methane and volatile organic compounds into the air in a Mansfield, Texas neighborhood. This release caused complaints of health impacts and foul odors.

Fracking in close proximity to homes declines property values, causes problems with mortgages and insurance.

The mere existence of a signed gas lease can affect the home‘s appraised value and the homeowner‘s ability to obtain a mortgage loan, homeowner‘s insurance, and sell the residence. The cumulative effect of unconventional gas drilling on residences in the thirty to thirty-five states where operations occur, or are planned, poses a potential threat to the nation‘s $6.7 trillion secondary mortgage market, since the secondary mortgage market is supported by an unknown number of mortgages affected by residential fracking.

AT THE INTERSECTION OF WALL STREET AND MAIN: IMPACTS OF HYDRAULIC FRACTURING ON RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY INTERESTS, RISK ALLOCATION, AND IMPLICATIONS FOR THE SECONDARY MORTGAGE MARKET

Tim and Christine Ruggiero’s home was devalued 75% because a mineral owner decided to develop his minerals 200’ from their backdoor. See page 16.

People who live near oil and gas development have more hospitalizations.

Hospitalizations for heart conditions, neurological illness, and other conditions were higher among people who live near unconventional gas and oil drilling (hydraulic fracturing), according to new research from the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University published this week in PLOS ONE.

High levels of volatile organic compounds and formaldehyde have been detected a half-mile from the facilities and in one Eagle Ford Shale case the air pollution traveled 20 miles impacting all in its wake.

…high levels of pollutants were detected at distances exceeding legal setback distances from wellheads to homes. Highly elevated levels of formaldehyde, for example, were found up to a half-mile from a wellhead. In Arkansas, seven air samples contained formaldehyde at levels up to 60 times the level known to raise the risk for cancer. “This is a significant public health risk,” said lead author David O. Carpenter, MD, in an accompanying interview, “Cancer has a long latency, so you’re not seeing an elevation in cancer in these communities. But five, 10, 15 years from now, elevation in cancer is almost certain to happen.” Source

In Denton, residents where evacuated in a 1000’ radius during a blowout.

Arlington residents were evacuated in a 650’ radius during a blowout.

When lightning struck a well in a Denton neighborhood, terrified residents self-evacuated.

Then there is the flaming and contaminated water. Most often you don’t learn much about these cases because they are kept secret in non disclosure agreements.

Even if the percentage of Texas mineral owners is higher than 2%, they are still in the vast minority. Something has to give.

Are you going to continue to let them push you around?

UPDATE:  This letter by Tricia Davis appeared in the Star-Telegram

Anti-fracking groups like to think they’re campaigning against Big Oil, but they’re really attacking millions of property owners across Texas. (See July 9 commentary, “Oil and gas industry may one day reap a fracking whirlwind.”)

The fracking ban in Denton was not a victory for democracy. It stripped Texans of their constitutionally protected rights to develop energy on their own property.

Any government — be it federal, state, or local — that takes rights away is the very definition of Big Government. Texas lawmakers deserve credit for standing up against that with House Bill 40, which protects taxpayers and property owners from the kind of illegal, costly, activist-driven bans that Denton is still paying for.

Don’t be fooled by their rhetoric on “local control.” Frack Free Denton wants to expand its campaign statewide to tell all Texans what they can and cannot do with their own land.

Cities in Texas haven’t been fooled thus far, and many have actually spoken in favor of HB 40. Speaking for those of us who still cherish individual rights, let’s hope it stays that way.

— Tricia Davis, president, Texas Royalty Council, Austin

So now Davis inflates the numbers by saying it’s millions of property owners instead of what she said previously: “570,000 Texans are mineral owners.”

Davis likes to throw out the terms “property rights” and “constitutional,” but constitutional rights apply to all Texans not just an elite 2%. The rhetoric Davis uses comes straight from the playbook used throughout history to convince the majority to make sacrifices that only benefit a minority.

Paris-Hilton-with-her-chihuahuaPlease recall when this same rhetoric was used to convince regular Texans to vote against an estate tax they would never have to pay by calling it a death tax.

The wealthiest 2% of Americans tried to convince regular, hard working Americans that their assets would be taxed after death. The estate tax only applied to estates valued at over $1million dollars. In other words, Paris Hilton and her ilk, don’t what to pay taxes on the millions or billions they inherit. That’s free money that they did not work to earn. Of course they are entitled to their inheritance but it is income that should be taxed like any income.

All Texans have the right to enjoy their private property. Private property owners should not be considered squatters by the 2% mineral owners. Constitutional property rights extend to all Texans.

Mineral owners do not have the right to destroy surface owner’s private property subjecting their families to health and safety risks. These are not family values!

FatalVaporsSign

Help me think of other examples where the minority used rhetoric to convince the majority to act against their best interest.

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Did Devon Energy representative lie to Denton P&Z commissioners? http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/22/did-devon-energy-representative-lie-to-denton-pz-commissioners/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/22/did-devon-energy-representative-lie-to-denton-pz-commissioners/#comments Thu, 23 Jul 2015 02:45:12 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15268 Did Devon Energy representative lie? I’ve been watching the Denton Planning & Zoning hearing on Denton’s proposed drilling ordinance. I wrote a blog yesterday to let the city know that a 1000′ setback has been proven commercially reasonable by the HB40 safe harbor clause. Dish, Texas passed their ordinance in March 2006. It has a […]

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Did Devon Energy representative lie?

I’ve been watching the Denton Planning & Zoning hearing on Denton’s proposed drilling ordinance. I wrote a blog yesterday to let the city know that a 1000′ setback has been proven commercially reasonable by the HB40 safe harbor clause.

Dish, Texas passed their ordinance in March 2006. It has a 1000’ setback and operators have complied with the ordinance, making the Dish ordinance commercially reasonable under HB40.

I think Gilbert Horton the representative for Devon might have told a lie at the hearing when he said that Dish did have a 1000′ setback but that Devon was given a waiver for that setback.

I immediately sent a text to Calvin Tillman, former mayor of Dish, and asked him to verify that. He said that Dish absolutely did not give Devon any variance and that he can prove it.

Color me not shocked because I’ve been watching Gilbert Horton for years.

Stand by…

Addition: Another interesting thing Horton said is that Devon wants the setback and reverse setback to match. He didn’t offer a figure for what it should be but just said it should match to be fair.

I completely agree with that. And, since Devon has successfully drilled complying with a 1000′ setback, I think that the reverse setback should be matchy matchy at 1000′. As I mentioned before, 1000′ is not a protective setback by any stretch. But if these yahoos are going to be building assisted living facilities, day care centers and playgrounds (as Horton mentioned) right up next to industrial mining sites, then we need a matching setback of at least 1000′.

Other things from the hearing:

NONE of the property issues discussed at Denton’s P&Z hearing would exist with the fracking ban in place.
Thanks Myra Crownover, Todd Staples and the Texas Legislature for creating all these new problems. HB40 stripped away a 100 year tradition of concurrent regulation of the oil and gas industry by state and cities.

Ed Ireland wants pad sites to be bigger than the proposed 2 acres. Correct me if I’m wrong, Dear Readers, but doesn’t industry brag about a small footprint because of horizontal hydraulic fracturing? Ed doesn’t like masonry fences either because they are ugly. He thinks pits should be left up to the Railroad Commission because, as you can see in this video, they have done a great job of regulating pits.

One landowner wants to build an assisted living facility closer to the wellsite than the setback allows. One friend suggested new lyrics to “Grandma got run over by a reindeer.” But I have to wonder what happens to the residents in this facility in the likely event there is an emergency at the gas well. The blowout in Arlington caused evacuations in an area exceeding 650′. Denton’s blowout was evacuated over 1000′. When lightning struck the well in a Denton neighborhood, residents self evacuated. Who comes up with the evacuation plan for elderly people in assisted living?

Another landowner leased her mineral rights, got a no drill clause to protect her property and is now upset because a setback will keep her from making even more money on her property by developing close to the wells. :/

Update: Horton just backed off when commissioners questioned him. He said it’s been 6 years so maybe he is not remembering it correctly.

Of course, there was this:

I have Calvin’s phone number so I know exactly what he said. Then later there was this:

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Hoist frackers on their own petard with HB40 safe harbor. http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/21/hoist-frackers-on-their-own-petard-with-hb40-safe-harbor/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/21/hoist-frackers-on-their-own-petard-with-hb40-safe-harbor/#comments Tue, 21 Jul 2015 20:57:57 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15251 Texan communities statewide are planning how to restore local democratic control over fracking. They have to because the oil and gas industry, aided and abetted by the state legislature and Governor Abbott with the passage of HB40, stripped communities’ century old rights to govern oil and gas development concurrently with the state. In the meantime, […]

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Texan communities statewide are planning how to restore local democratic control over fracking. They have to because the oil and gas industry, aided and abetted by the state legislature and Governor Abbott with the passage of HB40, stripped communities’ century old rights to govern oil and gas development concurrently with the state.

LocalControl

In the meantime, cities should consider using the “safe harbor” clause of HB40 to hoist frackers on their own petard.

Cities interested in updating their drilling ordinances should think about the HB40 safe harbor clause.

An ordinance or other measure is considered prima facie to be commercially reasonable if the ordinance or other measure has been in effect for at least five years and has allowed the oil and gas operations at issue to continue during that period.

Drew Darby established legislative intent with some vehement statements about the HB40 safe harbor clause. Those statements are public record. Below are two news reports about the intent of the safe harbor clause.

  1. Darby also added what he calls a “safe harbor” provision, protecting cities from legal challenges if their ordinances have not triggered litigation in the past five years – another change that the Municipal League found more palatable. Texas Tribune
  2. To provide some comfort to cities with long-standing ordinances, the bill contains a “safe harbor” provision that says any ordinance or other measure in effect for five years that has allowed drilling to take place should be considered commercially reasonable on its face. Star-Telegram

The industry, through our legislators, made it obvious that they desire a setback of 600’ or less. But there is at least one ordinance with a 1000’ setback that meets the HB40 safe harbor clause.

Dish, Texas passed their ordinance in March 2006. It has a 1000’ setback and operators have complied with the ordinance, making the Dish ordinance commercially reasonable under HB40.

The Town of Dish has amended the ordinance several times to strengthen parts of it including noise and noxious odors. They added a vapor recovery unit requirement ordinance 5 years ago this past May.

There may be other five year old ordinances that have allowed drilling in the city limits with specific ordinances parts from which cities can pick and choose.

Adopting pieces of ordinances that comply with the HB40 safe harbor clause, puts cities in a good position to defend industry challenges against the new ordinance under HB40.

While 1000’ isn’t perfect, hell, it’s not even protective, it’s better than the 600’ feet embraced by industry.

Meanwhile, the fight to restore real local control continues.

Update from Calvin Tillman, former mayor of Dish:

The original ordinance with the 1000 ft setback  was adopted in 2006.  In 2008 or 2009 Devon drilled 3 wells in compliance with the ordinance, and the 1,000 ft setback.  There was another revision to the ordinance in 2008, but I can’t remember what the change was.  In 2010 we updated the ordinance requiring vapor recovery, but I don’t believe any drilling has taken place in the town limits since then.

Calvin Tillman

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Webinar: The most dangerous oil field in the U.S. http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/20/webinar-the-most-dangerous-oil-field-in-the-u-s/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/20/webinar-the-most-dangerous-oil-field-in-the-u-s/#comments Tue, 21 Jul 2015 01:06:10 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15246 Inside the Bakken: National Impacts and How You Can Help Thu, Jul 23, 2015 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM CDT Register here Show in My Time Zone North Dakota’s Bakken Shale is one of the two biggest fracking oil fields in the U.S. Most people will never visit the Bakken. But Bakken oil trains will […]

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Inside the Bakken: National Impacts and How You Can Help

Thu, Jul 23, 2015 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM CDT

Register here


Inside the Bakken: National Impacts and How You Can Help North Dakota’s Bakken Shale is one of the two biggest fracking oil fields in the U.S.

Most people will never visit the Bakken. But Bakken oil trains will “visit” communities throughout North America on their way to refineries. And because Bakken oil is highly volatile, each one of these trains puts at risk the communities they travel through.

Inside the Bakken, a constant stream of social issues impact the region including housing booms and busts, migration of national and international workers, childhood homelessness, crime and violence.

Join us for an online discussion to learn about the challenges of living in the Bakken, the national impacts of the North Dakota fracking oil boom and what you can do to help.

The webinar will consist of short presentations by the panelists, followed by a Q&A period where attendees can submit questions.

PANELISTS/PRESENTERS:
Don Morrison – Executive Director, Dakota Resource Council
Wayde Schafer – Sierra Club, North Dakota
Theodora Bird Bear – Fort Berthold Indian Reservation, North Dakota
Pastor Martin Mock – Senior Pastor, First Lutheran Church, Williston, North Dakota

MODERATORS:
Deborah Thomas – Shaletest.org for Earthworks
Jennifer Goldman – Earthworks

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Frackquake lawsuits and other fracking news roundup. http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/02/frackquake-lawsuits-and-other-fracking-news-roundup/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/07/02/frackquake-lawsuits-and-other-fracking-news-roundup/#comments Thu, 02 Jul 2015 23:37:14 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15231 I’m too busy for my blog so this is a fracking news round up of recent fracking news. Coming soon: Face-off between fracking and insurance companies The Oklahoma Supreme Court has ruled that homeowners can sue industry for frackquake damage. The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that homeowners who have sustained injuries or property damage […]

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I’m too busy for my blog so this is a fracking news round up of recent fracking news.

Coming soon: Face-off between fracking and insurance companies

The Oklahoma Supreme Court has ruled that homeowners can sue industry for frackquake damage.

The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that homeowners who have sustained injuries or property damage from rampant earthquakes they say are caused by oil and gas operations can sue for damages in state trial courts, rejecting efforts by the industry to block such lawsuits from being decided by juries and judges.  NY Times

I’ve mentioned before that insurance companies and mortgage companies may become our new allies against fracking.

Public health and fracking.

The PA health Department is not following up on fracking health complaints partially because health workers are too intimidated by industry. StateImpact

Another study showing that fracking hurts babies and other people. This one from Pennsylvania.

A new study has linked fracking to a higher incidence in infant mortality, perinatal mortality, low-weight births, premature births and cancer in infants and children.

Funded by the Pittsburgh Foundation and written by Joe Mangano, co-founder and president of the Radiation and Public Health Project, a nonprofit educational and scientific organization that studies the relationship between low-level, nuclear radiation and public health, the study used data from state agencies to examine eight heavily fracked counties in Pennsylvania — four in the northeast and four in the southwest region of the state, counties that account for the majority of the state’s natural gas drill wells and gas production. In all categories but child cancer, increases were greater in the northeast counties than they were in the four southwest counties.

The nose knows: “Anytime you can smell it, you are in a regime that is very polluted,” he says. “In many ways your nose is a better mass spectrometer than any device on the market.” MotherJones

 Water

A USGS study says fracking is using more water.

Oil and natural gas fracking, on average, uses more than 28 times the water it did 15 years ago, gulping up to 9.6 million gallons of water per well and putting farming and drinking sources at risk in arid states, especially during drought.  Scientific American

Eagle Ford Shale wells use the most water–“between 3.9 million and 5.1 million gallons of water for oil and gas wells, respectively.” (Includes a cool map showing water usage nationally.)  San Antonio Express Remember these are voluntarily supplied numbers.

The bad news is a study has identified “15 fracking contaminants based on their toxicity, mobility, persistence and frequency of use.”

Using a fast groundwater transport scenario, the team predicted that 41 of the 659 organic compounds screened would have 10 percent or more of their initial concentrations remaining at a transport distance of roughly 300 feet. That is the average state “setback” distance in the United States between a fracking well and a drinking water well, said CU-Boulder Professor Joseph Ryan, the principal investigator on the study. From University of Colorado

But the good news is there is a list of popular Eagle Ford Shale bars where you can drink alcohol instead of water. San Antonio Business Journal

The additional bad news is Shiner Bock has been fracked.

And the really bad news is that Texas is suing the EPA over federal water law because Texans love polluted water.

Joined by Louisiana and Mississippi, Texas is challenging the “Waters of the U.S.” rule, which the EPA finalized Monday. That rule is aimed at better defining the scope of bodies of water protected under the Clean Water Act. Members of the farm lobby and Republican leaders say the rule will lead to more regulation and a takeover of private property. Texas Tribune

Scary realities of what to do with drilling waste water. In an effort to stop frackquakes, we may end up drinking it. EPA has left it up to states to decide about discharging drilling waste into water. Much more in this Energywire article.

According to information self-reported by industry, there are hundreds of chemicals that can be present in wastewater. But EPA has drinking water standards for only 94 chemicals and standard test methods for only a few dozen more. For many of the chemicals that industry lists on its FracFocus database, there are no scientifically agreed-upon toxicity limits or even methods for testing.

 HB40

This article gets it right about HB40, many articles have missed the mark. KERA

HB40 Oklahoma style. StateImpactListen to:  McAlester Mayor Steve Harrison’s sarcastic “Requiem for an Ordinance”

Climate Change

Prince Charles wants to avert climate catastrophe by making “profound changes” to the economic system.

The heir to the throne – often criticised for his meddling in political affairs – argued that ending the taxpayer subsidies enjoyed by coal, oil and gas companies could reduce the carbon emissions driving climate change by an estimated 13%. The Guardian

Naomi Klein’s monumental speech at People and Planet First starts at 39:25.

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Fracking KILLS BABIES http://www.texassharon.com/2015/06/22/fracking-kills-babies/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/06/22/fracking-kills-babies/#comments Mon, 22 Jun 2015 23:18:00 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15224 Fracking kills babies. There are no mythical economic benefits worth killing our babies. What’s Killing the Babies of Vernal, Utah? A fracking boomtown, a spike in stillborn deaths and a gusher of unanswered questions By Paul Solotaroff June 22, 2015 New evidence comes out everyday condemning fracking and Texas lawmakers, with HB40, have made it […]

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Fracking kills babies.

There are no mythical economic benefits worth killing our babies.

What’s Killing the Babies of Vernal, Utah?
A fracking boomtown, a spike in stillborn deaths and a gusher of unanswered questions
By Paul Solotaroff June 22, 2015

New evidence comes out everyday condemning fracking and Texas lawmakers, with HB40, have made it impossible for us to protect ourselves from fracking.

In the Rolling Stone article, the TCEQ admits that they refused to investigate this incident that impacted people for 20 miles with dangerous fracking air pollution:

TCEQ REFUSED TO RESPOND WHILE THIS AIR POLLUTION TRAVELED 20 MILES

TCEQ

They admitted it. The TCEQ will not protect you. Fracking kills babies.
n some of these communities, leaders came forward to seek help and information from county officials. What came back, over and over, though, was ringing silence, as health-department representatives shrugged and hung up. “In Karnes County alone, we had two blowouts last week, one that covered everything in a coat of oil and methane, including people’s homes and livestock,” says Sharon Wilson, the state organizer in Texas for a national nonprofit called Earthworks, which helps small communities, like Karnes City in southeast Texas, fight back against billionaire drillers. In another disaster, a well leaked methane for days, but when Wilson called the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, she was told that they wouldn’t send an inspector because she didn’t “live in the area.” “I told him I was only calling because the residents there tried to, but couldn’t get a response from him.” (A spokeswoman for TCEQ told Rolling Stone that since “Ms. Wilson is not a resident [of Karnes County], she has limited ability to document nuisance conditions,”

I had a FLIR camera and I have the same certification TCEQ investigators have.

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Industry should pay for frackquake damage http://www.texassharon.com/2015/06/21/industry-should-pay-for-frackquake-damage/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/06/21/industry-should-pay-for-frackquake-damage/#comments Sun, 21 Jun 2015 15:00:59 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15217 It is time for industry to pay for frackquake damage. Three papers  dealing with frackquakes came out this week, one from University of Colorado Boulder and the United States Geological Survey, another from Stanford University and another from Caltech. From the University of Colorado Boulder and the United States Geological Survey: “the entire increase in […]

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It is time for industry to pay for frackquake damage.

Three papers  dealing with frackquakes came out this week, one from University of Colorado Boulder and the United States Geological Survey, another from Stanford University and another from Caltech.

From the University of Colorado Boulder and the United States Geological Survey:

“the entire increase in the number of earthquakes in the U.S. midcontinent is associated with injection wells…” Inside Climate News, Yes, Those Earthquakes Are Caused by Fracking Boom, Studies Confirm

This study links Fracking Waste Injection Wells to 60% of Earthquakes in Central and Eastern U.S.

Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder found that of the underground wells associated with earthquakes, 66% were used for oil recovery, a type of injection well. Other wells, those involving saltwater disposal, were 1.5 times as likely as oil recovery wells to be associated with earthquakes. Source

From two geologists at Stanford University:

greater seismicity in certain counties in Oklahoma was often preceded by 5- to 10-fold increases in the volume of wastewater injected. Inside Climate News

From CalTech, where they injected only 250 gallons of fluid into a fault where sensors had been installed:

Now, for the first time, researchers at Caltech and other institutions in the United States and France have observed how fluid injection sets off microearthquakes on a sizable, subterranean fault.
Fluid Injection’s Role in Man-Made Earthquakes Revealed

Science is finally catching up to what people who live near fracking have known for years. Fracking causes earthquakes. While science is catching up and industry is denying any responsibility while raking in profit, people are getting hurt.

It’s time for industry to pay for frackquake damage.

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“RAISE HELL: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins.” http://www.texassharon.com/2015/06/18/raise-hell-the-life-times-of-molly-ivins/ http://www.texassharon.com/2015/06/18/raise-hell-the-life-times-of-molly-ivins/#comments Thu, 18 Jun 2015 22:51:25 +0000 http://www.texassharon.com/?p=15214 Taking a fracking break to let you know about an exciting documentary that is in the works. This is from Letters From Texas: Please visit the film’s Kickstarter page and watch the footage so far, then consider helping them reach their financial goal so that they can complete this work. Molly was an essential voice […]

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Taking a fracking break to let you know about an exciting documentary that is in the works.

This is from Letters From Texas:

Please visit the film’s Kickstarter page and watch the footage so far, then consider helping them reach their financial goal so that they can complete this work. Molly was an essential voice in progressive politics, and we owe it to her to make sure her voice continues through this important documentary.
I visited. I kickstarted. I hope you will too.
Now, back to kicking fracking’s ass.

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