Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Mr T. Boone's Gas Truck has hauled it away 

The T. Boone Pickens has a plan... and it might very well poison your drinking water and destroy your land. Especially if you are one of those people currently being approached by the oil and gas companies with lusty offers of fabulous royalties from the natural gas reserves that may be hiding around under your back porch.

The Larry King Show (CNN) August 4, 2008:
T. BOONE PICKENS: ...my plan, The Pickens Plan, is a -- it's non-nonpartisan. And I said that at the first. I'm not -- I usually am, you know, helping Republicans. I'm not in this case. I'm not helping John McCain. I wanted it nonpartisan. I think it's so important to this country. And this is American. It's not political. And I do have a plan and the plan will work.

LARRY KING: All right, give me the essence of it.

PICKENS: OK. It's pretty simple, that we only have one natural resource in America that will replace foreign oil, and that's natural gas. We have an abundance of natural gas. It's cleaner, it's cheaper and it's domestic. And it will replace foreign oil.

"It's not political" - "it's non-nonpartisan" (yeah, it's non-nonpartisan alright). Wall Street Journal, October 2004:
On October 14, the Times followed up with a report on apparent Bush administration favoritism towards Halliburton in the regulatory field, through a series of actions that boosted a drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing, devised by Halliburton, despite environmental concerns. The technique involves the injection of liquid chemicals, including gasoline, napalm, crude oil and other toxic substances, into oil wells, to force out greater quantities of petroleum than can be recovered by ordinary drilling.

The Bush administration has intervened to oppose efforts to regulate hydraulic fracturing under the Safe Drinking Water Act, authorizing an EPA study declaring that the technique poses no threat to drinking water. At least one EPA career civil servant has sought whistleblower protection and filed a complaint with the agency’s inspector general and Congress over that decision. Weston Wilson, an environmental engineer with 30 years experience, charged that the finding was not supported by science and that a current Halliburton employee sat in on the review panel that approved it.

A lawsuit brought by a group of Alabama residents living near a Halliburton well challenged hydraulic fracturing and won a 1997 Appeals Court decision ordering the EPA to regulate the practice under the drinking water law. Action on this decision has been repeatedly stalled, and the issue was ultimately referred to the Bush administration’s energy task force—headed by former Halliburton CEO Cheney. Not surprisingly, the panel sided with the energy industry and overruled the EPA. The US Department of Energy issued a statement declaring hydraulic fracturing vital to the US economy and proposing its exemption from regulation.

Your assignment, if you should choose to accept it, is to go read about Hydraulic Fracturing:
Hydraulic fracturing is a common technique used to stimulate the production of oil and natural gas. Typically, fluids are injected underground at high pressures, the formations fracture, and the oil or gas flows more freely out of the formation. Some of the injected fluids remain trapped underground. A number of these fluids, such as diesel fuel, qualify as hazardous materials and carcinogens, and are toxic enough to contaminate groundwater resources. Read more details in OGAP's basic primer on hydraulic fracturing.

Once the fracturing process is accomplished - often using fluids such as diesel fuel (which contains benzene) - a proppant such as sand is injected into the well (into the fractures, to hold them open and therefore allow the oil and gas to more easily and freely flow to the well). The proppant (sand) is most likely resin-coated (with Teflon or other materials) to reduce friction and promote an easier flow of gas or oil to the well. Likewise, radioactive treated proppant is sometimes introduced into the well in order to map the fractures along the wellbore. All of this poisonous material remains in the ground (along the fractures) and can leech into underground drinking water aquafiers (not to mention the flowback from the wells which collects in toxic surface pits).

If you live on a farm or in a home that draws its drinking water from a natural well located on your property, as i do, (and don't get your water from a municipal water system etc.) then whatever poisons are being introduced into that ground water environment may end up in your water table, your coffee cup, and ultimately in you.
Very small quantities of chemicals such as benzene, which causes cancer, are capable of contaminating millions of gallons of water. [See: Hydraulic Fracturing 101

T. Boone Pickens and his pals didn't mention any of this during their little boy-howdy happy talk energy task force revival meeting with Lightweight Larry the other night. No, not a peep.

So go read that page about Hydraulic Fracturing as well as Hydraulic Fracturing 101. It's all part of the T. Boone Pickens Plan. That's just the beginning of this mess (and it's going to be - it already is! - a big mess. And it will get bigger unless strict legislation is passed and strict regulatory action is taken, and unmercifully enforced).

Also see: Shale Gas

For more details, information and news article links see:
Catskill Citizens dot org

Then the gas company came with the world's largest wellbore
And they tortured the timber and stripped all the land
Well, they drilled for their gas till the land was forsaken
Then they wrote it all down as the progress of man.

video: John Prine, Paradise (Muhlenberg County).


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