Earthquakes? What Earthquakes?

January 19, 2012

Read: Fracking Did Cause Eleven Earthquakes in Ohio Last Year


Reasons against Fracking Gas Drilling – Can You Add to this List?

July 20, 2011

There will be tens of thousands of gas wells drilled and fracked over the next two decades using slick water horizontal hydrofracking

This Massive-Scale Gas Drilling Will Bring You:

Lower Property Values
Higher Taxes
Polluted and Unusable Water
The loss of rivers  of water to the earth deep below.
Toxic Waste (heavy metals, carcinogens, brine and radioactive materials) (10 to 30 tons of chemicals per well)
Open Waste Pits
Undisclosed Chemicals
Endocrine Disruption
Carcinogens Left Underground
Spills
Industrial Zones
Air Pollution
Earth Pollution
Water Pollution
Asthma
Depleted Water Habitat
Noise Pollution
Eminent Domain
Forced Pooling
Loss of Farmland
Loss of Tourism
Disrupted Wildlife Habitat
Higher Crime Rate
Choking Truck Traffic
Truck accidents
Workers Dying
Citizens Dying
Broken Roads
Increased Accidents
Lower Quality of Life (why do you love this place?)
Deforestation
Loss of habitat
Earthquakes
Fractured Bedrock
Dubious Farm Products
Bubbling Rivers
Animal Kills
Increased Health Costs
Increased Infrastructure Costs

Educate yourself and take action!

Don’t be fooled by the propaganda you see on television and billboards.

All this is happening within the context of:

Machine-like Corporate values (IE the maximization of profit)
Political values (IE re-election is the god)
Mismanagement and disregard for the community (see Accidents and Violations Section here and elsewhere).

Then mix in weakened laws,  a depleted DEP, and rapid expansion.

Isn’t this a case for MORATORIUM!?


Landman’s Sleazy Handbook Found – a repost and explanation

April 15, 2011

Dear Readers,

I initially posted this story and its related document two days ago and then pulled it after several hours. Here is why I originally yanked it, and eventually re-posted it.

Upon originally skimming the Talking Points document, I felt it gave concrete proof of what the anti frack/ pro change movement has been charging all along. I thought the handbook was so chillingly manipulative and deliberate, it would contribute to the growing awareness and discontent. So I posted it

But after a second read, I began to wonder if it was legitimate. It seemed too blatant. Too contrived. How could someone be so naive and/or arrogant to print this? Perhaps it was a fabrication of some sort. I wondered. So I suspended the post and did a bit more searching and reasoning.

First, I thought back on how blatant and sophomoric the industry’s style has been thus far.

I recalled the first zoning meeting at the Luzerne County Courthouse. EnCana’s presenters were not their usual people like Joel Fox and Wendy Wiedenbeck. Rather, it was two young attractive women sporting cleavage and long legs. They were marketing lightweights, there for eye candy purposes only. How blatant! (Audrey Simpson has the whole thing on tape.)

Then I thought of Dimock. How violating!  The community was occupied and transformed by a soulless corporate entity with the full backing of an equally soulless state. And when people spoke up, they were spied upon and marginalized. Some day their survivors will win big law suits.

And then I considered the buying of Corbett, the lobbyists, billboards, commercials, sponsorships (compromising the likes of WVIA and Penn State), flag waving, “clean gas” propaganda, and “jobs, jobs, jobs,”… All the while: the violations, spills, accidents, explosions, deaths, injuries, dumping, diving land values, foreign investment, water depletion, well spoilage, lack of oversight, expedited permitting, and on and on…

Why these heartless bastards even put drill pads next to schools! Blatant!

So I came to the conclusion that these companies are capable of anything immoral, sophomoric, and stupid.

Secondly, the document is consistent with reports on landman tactics that I have heard and read.

And finally, larger web resources are reporting it: treehugger.com and AlterNet.

So, here it is again:

A post by John Trallo in the Susquehanna County Gas Forum:

For immediate release to all media outlets:
This document (see attached) marked: ” Proprietary – Do Not Distribute ” was ‘dropped’ by a land man and ‘fell’ into my hands.

This is a section of a ‘land man’s handbook’ on how to acquire oil/gas/mineral leases using false claims, misinformation, careful wording, half-truths, lies, and lying by omission. It clearly demonstrates that the oil and gas industry know exactly what they’re doing, and are completely aware of the ground water contamination, radiation, loss of property, loss of property value, and loss of quality of life. They know exactly how this industrialization will ruin a community.

This may be the most damaging evidence we have .

Pass this on to each and every investigative reporter, journalist, newspaper, environmental advocacy group, and legal defense group. Pass it on to all citizens who are concerned about the dangers of natural gas drilling, too.
John Trallo

See the document HERE: Talking Points for Selling Oil and Gas Lease Rights


Consider Harveys Lake for “exceptional value” watershed designation

December 10, 2010

We must try every possible (and impossible) avenue, strategy, tactic, and maneuver we can think of to stop the ruination of Pennsylvania by the gas drilling industry. Whether it is a protected species or place. Whether it is super inflated performance bonding. Or, perhaps, the discovery of forgotten laws. Moratoriums, and rights ordinances. Political and populist activism. Consciousness raising, demonstrating, civil disobedience … There is no one way. When you are in a fight, you don’t use just one hand. You use your whole body and spirit to defeat the invader.

Here is a letter to a state representative, asking that Harveys Lake be considered “exceptional”. While it can be argued that all bodies of water are exceptional, the state does have that designation to consider as a solution for this particular body of water. Why not try it?

It has come to our attention that DEP issued a drilling permit on Dec. 3rd for a gas well on Sterling Farms in Wyoming County. This is about a mile from our lake. It is inconceivable that an agency charged with protecting our environment could issue a permit for drilling within such close proximity to the lake.

I see in today’s Citizens’ Voice that the state is nearing a decision on making Silver Lake (also a glacial lake) a designated “exceptional value” watershed, which will prohibit gas drilling activities in that area. For the life of me, I can’t understand why the citizens need to be pointing out to the DEP where these exceptional water sheds exist! Do they do any research before handing out these drilling permits?

A single accident like the one in Clearfiled County in June can potentially destroy Harveys Lake. This would be a crime of significant proportions.

Throughout the years, DEP has had a great deal of influence on protecting our lake. Our public sewer system was state mandated, as is the current moratorium on any new connections to this system. Residents are experiencing difficulty in obtaining permits from DEP to build docks on their shoreline property because of the potential to harm plankton. We have our own ordinance banning the use of port-a-potties/job johnnies because of the potential leakage into the lake. It is ludicrous to allow gas drilling so close to this lake!

I am asking for your immediate attention as I consider this a matter of urgency! Please do whatever you can to stop this madness. Harveys Lake is the state’s largest natural freshwater lake and is pristine. If that doesn’t qualify it for “:exceptional value” status, I don’t know what does! Michell’e Boice (letter to Representative Karen Boback)


NoCana! “Dry Baby Dry!”

November 19, 2010

Wendy Wiedenbeck of EnCana

“Dry Baby dry!” has been Audrey Simpson’s battle cry (and prayer) since she first heard of EnCana’s plans to drill three experimental horizontal gas wells in the Back Mountain region of Northeast Penn’s Woods.

We first met Audrey on January 14, 2010. She was video taping a presentation by EnCana to the Back Mountain Community Partnership. I recall how simplistic and benign EnCana’s presentation was. They did not mention trainloads of chemicals, just some water and sand. When we publicly questioned them, they became defensive and contentious.

After the meeting, Audrey approached Karen, Leanne and I,  “We have to organize!”.  Then she introduced herself.   She had been following this Marcellus “play” for a while and she knew  it was bad mojo.

That was the beginning of NoDrillNEPA which eventually merged with Tom Jiunta’s group (Luzerne County Citizens for Clean Water) to become GDAC – Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition.

I called Simpson tonight to discuss the news that EnCana was pulling out of Luzerne and Columbia Counties. We recalled that back in January, we saw this outcome as a remote possibility. Here it was nine months later, and the dream was now reality.

This may be good news for the Back Mountain, but EnCana’s departure is totally fortuitous. Like being spared of small pox while others around you are wasting away.

The Susquehanna, Delaware, Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio remain threatened and suffering. Thousands of fellow citizens continue to be treated as guinea pigs, The Pennsylvania State Constitution continues to be usurped. Citizens will have their properties seized by private entities. Our governor will pay back the gas industry for its contributions to his campaign.

Ours was a chance victory in a large war. This won’t be won without a constitutional battle. For the time being we must do everything we can to help slow, stall, challenge, and ban this supposed juggernaut. Place by place. Day by day.

Otherwise, they will be back.

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I would think this EnCana announcement will not effect the continuing attempts to traverse the area with pipeline.

Always remember, the landmen were there when we were not. We must find a way to help struggling family farms. They are the backbone of rural Pennsylvania.

We need to re-think and re-tool for a green humanscale future. It is the only sane path.


Organized Crime

November 16, 2010

it is time for the state to act to protect the health and the rights of the citizens of Pennsylvania rather than looking out for big business and their bottom lines.

Doug Shields who represents the 5th Council District in the City of Pittsburgh

image: Adbusters


The Kidnapping of a River and the Truth

November 16, 2010

The kidnapping of a river, wherein it is murdered and buried – gallon by gallon:

In Don William’s most recent blog post, 600,000 natural gas wells!, his sources report the industry is expecting to drill from 200,000 to 600,000 wells in Pennsylvania.

In my recent post, Fracked Dry, I reported that the 200,000 figure was one which was put forth by Penn State as the “high end”. As I related at the time, I thought their figures low. While 200,000 is a devastating amount, 600,000 is homicidal.

It represents 1.5 TRILLION gallons of water profoudly polluted and permanently removed from our water cycle.

Only a small percentage of the water shot down during the fracking process comes back up. The rest is left below – abandoned in the form of a radioactified toxified super salty slurry.

1.5 Trillion gallons is equivalent to 204 Harvey’s Lakes or 1,341 Huntsville Reservoirs left beneath the earth’s surface.

1.5 Trillion gallons represents 57 days worth of water flow throughout the entire Susquehanna watershed.

Can we afford to loose 16% of our water cycle?

Also, 600,000 wells means 360 billion pounds of chemicals shot into the innocent earth. That’s 7.5 million tractor trailer loads of chemicals. That’s a convoy which would wrap around the earth over four times!

And what amount of air pollution will this pervasive drilling bring to our children’s and mother’s lungs?

Again, this is homicide, suicide, filicide, matricide, populicide, and ecocide.

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The Kidnapping of truth:

And how about that CBS corporation. Their 60 Minutes episode on fracking, titled Shaleionaires, was laughable. “Cleaner” gas was assumed, wealth was assumed, water was forgotten. In the conclusion there was hope of a bright solution and prosperous future, if we just eliminate those pesky human errors, reign in cost cutting, and don’t drink the frack fluid.

I thought it was counterproductive.

The blog, Fracked, has much to say about the 60 Minutes piece. See Sixty Fracking Lame Minutes and Shale Gas Drilling: Pros and Cons.

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Here is a poignant comment on Shaleionaires from the CBS website:

I was relieved to see SOMETHING about the gas drilling on 60 Minutes, but the piece does not begin to cover the issues and the fear and anger we experience living in the midst of the new “gold rush.” I live in southwestern PA near Waynesburg, PA and there is a well being drilled on nearly every hill top, dividing communities, pitting neighbor against neighbor and providing very little comfort/peace/environmental protection. A public forum was held in Pittsburgh recently and the representative from the DEP was very rude to the angry citizens who only want their questions answered. We were told we now live in a heavy industry area and no longer in the agriculture area. I already have had breast cancer from living in a heavy industry polluted town in WV and now face this invasion, because that is what it feels like, an invasion. As the farmers gather their thousands and reportedly millions, sell their cattle and either move or ride around in their caddys the rest of us try to come up with Plan B, sell now? wait? See what happens? Endure the filth, the smell, the noise and wait for more cancer?
Why can’t we commit to solar and wind power with such fervor????????

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Covert Fracking Cheerleaders: WVIA, the Kirby Theatre, WILK, Time Leader, Citizen’s Voice, CBS,… and many more. Some are transparent, others avoidant, others play both sides. It all has to do with donors and advertisers. Income is the game.