Routt County Road and Bridge Department Director Paul Draper walks past equipment with Brad Benton, a supervisor with GasFrac Energy Services, during a tour of an oil platform on Wolf Mountain.

Photo by John F. Russell

Routt County Road and Bridge Department Director Paul Draper walks past equipment with Brad Benton, a supervisor with GasFrac Energy Services, during a tour of an oil platform on Wolf Mountain.

Quicksilver fracking without water on Wolf Mountain

Advertisement

Adobe Flash player 9 is required to view this video
Get Adobe Flash player

Fracking for oil on Wolf Mountain

Crews from Quicksilver Resources and the Canadian firm GasFrac Energy Services were preparing the fourth and final phase Wednesday of fracking an oil well on a sagebrush-covered hillside overlooking Morgan Bottoms along the Yampa River east of Hayden. And no water was being used in the process.

Fracking information

Read a point/counterpoint on the relative merits of fracking for natural gas (not oil) sponsored by Yale University

Chemicals in gelled butane

What about chemical additives in the gelled butane being used to frack the Pirtlaw well on Wolf Mountain Ranch?

GasFrac personnel on site at the Quicksilver well being fracked this week in Routt County said they add three chemical compounds they purchase from a chemical supply outlet. Chemicals on the pad are stored within containment barriers.

According to material safety data sheets kept in records at the well pad, the compounds include:

• Activator XL-46D

Contains 30 to 40 percent ferric sulfate and smaller amounts of isopropanolamine, ammonium citrate and sodium xylene sulfonate.

Data sheet cautions that it can be “very toxic to aquatic organisms.” A section on first-aid indicates that inhalation of high amounts of vapor leads to cardiac arrest

• GELLP-10

Contains 70 to 90 percent mixed alkyl phosphate ester with smaller amounts of hexyl and amyl alcohol, N-butanol and phosphoric acid. Hazards include risk of serious damage to eyes if contacted, and wearing a full face shield while handling is required. Data sheet cautions to never pour water into the chemical.

• BRKLP-10

A slurry of magnesium oxide. Data sheet indicates it can be irritating to skin.

— Crews from Quicksilver Resources and the Canadian firm GasFrac Energy Services were preparing the fourth and final phase Wednesday of fracking an oil well on a sagebrush-covered hillside overlooking Morgan Bottoms along the Yampa River east of Hayden. And no water was being used in the process.

The fracking operations are intended to stimulate the Niobrara shale more than 8,000 feet beneath the surface and coax out the oil it is thought to contain.

“You have to liberate the hydrocarbons from the rocks,” Quicksilver Senior Director of Government and Community Affairs Stephen Lindsey said. The fracking fluid is made slippery to reduce friction and allow the oil to flow out of the rock.

Lindsey, who traveled to Colorado from Fort Worth, Texas, this week, led a tour of the oil pad for Routt County officials Wednesday.

The end of fracking signifies a milestone in the course of developing the Pirtlaw well on the 20,000-acre Wolf Mountain Ranch, Quicksilver Completions Superintendent Carl Bowers said.

As fracking winds down, the date when the energy companies know if the well will produce oil is perhaps two to four weeks away. If the news is affirmative, Pirtlaw will represent the first piece of a complicated mosaic that will guide petroleum engineers on how best to extract oil from this part of western Routt County.

“If this turns out to be the best well ever, the question becomes, ‘How many wells can we drill from this single pad?’” Bowers said. That would allow his company to realize efficiencies and reduce impact on the landscape.

But production from Pirtlaw, which is by no means guaranteed, also could allow Quicksilver to refine its best guess about how far away to build a second well.

Fracking with gelled butane

The fracking being undertaken at Pirtlaw is notably different from the most common form of the practice in that it is not relying on large amounts of water to create the tiny fissures in the shale that allow the oil to seep out of the rock.

“We used some water in the first 1,200 feet of drilling,” Bowers said. “But this well is using zero water in fracking.”

Instead, GasFrac is using gelled butane containing resin-coated sand to frack the well.

Choosing not to rely on water-based fracking reduces his company’s impact on Routt County in terms of eliminating the heavy truck traffic needed to haul water as well as reducing the amount of sand needed in the process, Bowers said. But it’s also the case that water is not well-suited to fracking operations in the Niobrara shale on the Western Slope, he added.

The butane injected into the well bore under high pressure will leave through pores extending about 15 inches into the shale and fracture it. When the butane retreats during the flow-back process, which is about to begin at Pirtlaw, the sand lubricated by the resin will remain in place to hold the fissures open.

Another advantage to butane, Bowers said, is that a good portion of it can be recovered during flow-back, the precursor to the beginning of oil production. A portion of it will be flared off, and flaring will continue around the clock during that period of several weeks. Motorists traveling east on U.S. Highway 40 will be able to see the flare from the hill above the Carpenter Ranch.

Preparing to frack

The act of fracking an oil well takes just 45 minutes and consumes about 1,500 gallons of diesel fuel to run the big pumps that pressurize the bore hole, Bowers estimated.

But the setup and safety procedures for each of the four fracking procedures being used at the Pirtlaw well on Wolf Mountain take three hours.

Among any downsides to the use of gelled butane at Pirtlaw is the fact that it is a volatile and flammable compound. Bowers and his crew spoke often about their safety procedures during the two-hour tour Wednesday.

The crew from Quicksilver and GasFrac wear flame-retardant suits during the procedure, but thanks to a high-tech command post, all of them are behind safety lines during the actual process. That’s thanks in large part to a command trailer where workers control all of the equipment, from hydraulic rams to vents and butane tanks.

The trailer has more flat screens than a small sports bar, allowing data bin operator Anthony Ferrara to monitor the location of all personnel on the pad at all times while manipulating the controls either through a data cable or wirelessly.

In case of emergency, “I can shut everything except the pickup trucks down with this one switch,” Ferrara said.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205 or email tross@SteamboatToday.com

Comments

sedgemo 2 years, 5 months ago

Tom, do you have any information available on the atmospheric affects of flaring off Butane?

0

kathy foos 2 years, 5 months ago

Whats in the fracking fluid?The EPA has new rules .I guess that they are in effect for this well?Im so sorry for you ranchers and wheat farmers that live in the area,Is there a reasonable priced place available for them to take water samples to have the well waters checked for this fluid?Its hard enough to make a profit in these industry's,now they have a new" wildcard",gas and oil,to deal with.Who can fight the oil companys when they have all of the money.Gas has not dropped for 3 years and has wiped out our extra money all along.Held hostage by our dependency and they will only raise it,not ever lower it.Its killing our economy now,I don't forget that ever...

0

Kerrie Cooper 2 years, 5 months ago

Along the Yampa River? And none of these chemicals will find their way into the water ways??? Rrrrrriiiggghhhtttt? And to hek with the people downstream who drink this water or play or fish in it?? Like I said, this is an unconscionable industry.

0

TorpedoOfTruth 2 years, 5 months ago

They're using Butane...there is literally no way it can make its way to the water ways because it will turn into vapor at ambient conditions. It's what's inside your Bic lighter. Plus they're placing it 1 and 1/2 miles underground.

0

Webby 2 years, 5 months ago

OK. I'm in on the fray now.
I find it ironic that this well is being fraced near the river basin that in this very newspaper shows as being on the national list of "high-value heritage sites".
That said, anyone (TorpedoOfTruth) who thinks that only one chemical is being used in fracing isn't very educated on the facts. Heck look at the sidebar to the article and you see the "other" chemicals being pumped into the ground. Not to mention the chemicals that end up coming out of well from 1.5 miles down. These are the chems to really be worried about. They will end up in the water and especially the air during the "burn off" process.
The thing that really caught my attention is the diesel fuel used in the process....1500 gallons in 45 minutes. That is burning the fuel at 1.8 gallons per SECOND!!!!! These companies do not care one bit about the quality of life we have. They will lie, cheat, and steal to make money any way possible. They are just getting started here, and if we don't pay any attention to it, in we will end up just like Garfield County. Look into it.

0

TorpedoOfTruth 2 years, 5 months ago

I wish I could agree with you but due to the fact that continued development in the Barnett Shale in Urban DFW has showed a continued decrease in BTEX and VOC levels in the air (this is from AutoGC monitoring stations set up all over DFW by the TCEQ which is a division of the EPA). I find it hard to believe this will have any impact compared to the massive amount of sulfur dioxide the coal-fired power plant releases on the other side of 40 from this location. I just applaud companies for trying to develop new untapped properties and stimulate local economies which could lessen our dependence on foreign oil and only hope for the day that we no longer have to rely on fossil fuels. And I hate to be "that guy" but that would actually come out to ~0.6gal/sec of diesel used.

0

Webby 2 years, 5 months ago

Believe it when they drill all the well permits that are being issued these days. I'm not talking about just this well. This is the tip of the iceberg (melting) so to speak. There is not going to be 1800 coal-fired power plants in the county. There very well could be that many gas/oil rigs however.
Drive down the I-70 corridor and you lose count of all the wells out there. (If the air is getting CLEANER down there, then I am seriously misinformed.) The coal plant across 40 is very highly regulated and brings hundreds of local jobs. You cannot believe that these out of state oil and gas companies are hiring local drillers? Maybe a handful, but I would bet the majority of these guys are from out of state and all the money is going out of state. I know the gas and oil is. I am sorry. I suck at math. You are right, >1 gallon every 2 seconds. So much better.

0

sedgemo 2 years, 5 months ago

My understanding is the coal exhausts are scrubbed and monitored. Will any of that happen with the butane flaring?

If butane simply vaporizes in ambient conditions, why do they need to burn it?

And... I can't do the math since production figures are an unknown, but these wells would have to be extremely productive to justify 1500 gals. of diesel fuel in 45 minutes... for ONE drill hole. That is about twice what it takes to run my truck for 12 months.

0

Webby 2 years, 5 months ago

Extremely productive? They don't even know if this well will produce anything. The unknowns of these projects is the scariest part. Non of us can really provide any information to each other because nobody knows what is going on. Not us. Not the gov't. And not even the drillers themselves.
If they don't know if they will get any gas or oil out of this well, how can they know what they will be getting at all? There are no tests for the stuff that will come out of this well.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Well just listen to all you hand-wringers sorting out the potential unknowns! Unknowns? Are you men or mice?

Your forebears had no guarantees when they conquered this continent, sent men to the moon, rushed headlong into the nazi machine-guns, built an unknown device in their garage called a computer. My God, what a bunch of cupcakes.

The funny thing is hearing that fracking is possible without water. Just about the time local, state or federal (or international when the time comes) government thinks it's gonna put the squeeze on free men, American ingenuity spits in their face! Good!!!

0

trump_suit 2 years, 5 months ago

Facking also uses diesel fule which is specifically forbidden by a signed mutual consent agreement. However, they keep finding companies that are using diesel. What other chemicals are they injecting to then be burned off into our atmosphere?

I do not have a problem with local drilling and resource extraction, and I will continue to use plastics and drive my gasoline vehicles. However, I do want to know just EXACTLY what chemicals they are injecting so that if/when the turn up in the aquifer we will know who to blame, and who will be paying for the cleanup.

The oil companies do not have the right do inject anything they want because it works. We have the right to know what is being put into our local environment.

Nice semantics there sled, but try to stay on topic here. we are not discussing WWII, or the heroics of our ancestors, we are talking about what is being done right now in Routt county. I think it is clear that without regulation the oil companies will not give so much as a rats a$$ for our air and water but will rather do things in such a way to increase their profit margin without regard to the risks.

0

sedgemo 2 years, 5 months ago

Sled, with all due respect, it takes more courage to ask questions in the beginning rather than turn away presuming all is well. You need only look to the origins of WWII to understand this.

For the record, I am not anti-development and know there are no guarantees in the extractives industry for anyone. That said, I think it matters to control the side effects and the process in our community. To do that we need information. Asking questions is far from hand-wringing in my world view.

So what does happens when butane is burned in the presence of the other chemicals Tom listed? What would be released unscrubbed, and why would it need to be burned if it simply "vaporizes"... and would the amount and duration of those vapors bring any consequences downwind. Sled?

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Semantics: The study of meaning used by humans to express themselves through language. Like "...what the meaning of 'is' is." Has nothing to do with "topic". The headline mentioned fracking without water. I mentioned how funny it was to me that the county thought they had the company cornered on the water issue only to find out the company was one step ahead of them. I think that IS on topic. But I suppose that depends on the meaning of "is".

0

sedgemo 2 years, 5 months ago

http://www.epa.gov/ttnchie1/ap42/ch13/final/c13s05.pdf

Old info here but from the EPA, seems to indicate the primary result of flaring butane is CO2.

I agree Sled, the county got outmaneuvered here, that was my first response to this "topic" as well.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Sedge, I am all for the public knowing whats going on; for having reasonable controls over things getting injected into the ground; for making sure companies follow reasonable guidelines and best practices. We agree on that. I do not think that's the motivation behind much of this discussion. I think much of this is an attempt to shut down energy production, not just in Routt but state and nationwide. And one needn't look farther than the words of some of the commentators to know that their arguments are not about doing it right but NOT doing it at all. And they play on people's fears to make their otherwise weak case.

0

Glenn Little II 2 years, 5 months ago

So this is still not a green energy resource and will cause plenty of pollution for us all to choke on and kill off the living things on this planet. How come we are not providing solar and wind energy for people? There are plenty of ways to create energy and other oil such as hemp oil which is environmentally friendly... Wake up and smell the truth people!

1 Acre hemp = 4 Acres of trees Hemp takes 3 months to grow and Trees take a lifetime. 1 Acre of Corn or Maize = 2,500 litres of ethanol. 1 Acre of Hemp = 10,000 litres of ethanol.

0

Webby 2 years, 5 months ago

The only way they are not using as much water is by using more chemicals. I think that is pretty easy to understand. Not only more chemicals, but according to this article, very toxic and volitale chemicals. It sounds like a disaster waiting to happen over there. Anyone ever heard of the "Halliburton loophole"? Google it. If anybody thinks these guys are being regulated by the EPA or others, they are very misguided. The only regulation here in CO is the Colorado Oil and Gas Commision. Check the list of members and you will see this is like the fox guarding the hen house. Local gov't s are the only one with any control on what is going on.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

So, as a substitute to fossil fuel you guys support alternative energy like wind, solar and biofuels? Let's see...

"A 130 turbine wind farm off Cape Cod would impoverish the experiance of millions of tourists..." --R. F. Kennedy Jr

Mr Martin O'Malley, green governor of Maryland banned windmills from public land stating "windmills would reduce the lands recreational value, spoil the landscape and lower property values."

A proposed wind farm off the coast of Georgia was delayed by greens who wanted a multi-year study of whale impacts.

Ditto for a wind farm off the coast of British Columbia.

In 2008 the BLM halted solar project applications at the behest of greens who claimed it negatively impacted squirrels and turtles.

Friends of Earth Europe said in 2008 "Politicians are waking up to the fact that using crops to feed cars is a disaster in the making."

The Sierra Clubs Global Warming and Energy Program went on public radio in 2007 and complained that "biofuels contribute to glabal warming."

In 2008 the Nature Conservancy said that "Almost all biofuels cause more greenhouse emmissions than conventional fuels if the full emmissions costs are taken into account." I could continue this list for 20 pages.

You people don't want alternative energy any more than you want conventional energy. You believe that growth is bad and limiting the availability if energy is the way to squelch growth.

If someone found a way to make infinite amounts of zero-emmission energy Exxon-Mobile wouldnt have to assassinate 'em; the Sierra Club or Greenpeace would beat them to it!

0

Kristopher Hammond 2 years, 5 months ago

Experienced and savvy Texan and Canadian oil companies have done an end run around the dream-killing regulations of an unprepared rural county government. Awesome! They quell the county's concerns about water by pumping diesel fuel into the ground instead! Brilliant! This may not be so good for the people of the little county, but let's keep our eyes on the big picture, the fight of good vs. evil.

After all, conquering this continent, sending men to the moon, rushing headlong into the nazi machine-guns were all accomplished by corporations just like Quicksilver and GasFrac, right? Can't the gopvernment just get out of the way of greatness and let the good guys win?

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

You are correct Shawant, Winning WWII and putting men on the moon and conquering this continent was accomplished ONLY due to the aid of corporations like quicksilver and gasfrac. Without corporations it would never have happened.

Could have used water in the well instead, except for our brilliant county government, right???

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

This well full of chemicals instead of water is a textbook example of what happens when people "make the perfect into the enemy of the good." a very typical elitist utopian thought process

0

trump_suit 2 years, 5 months ago

I think sled would let them drill at the bottom of his water well if there was oil to be found..

Lets be clear about the chemicals. Whatever technology they choose for any given well. It WILL be full of chemicals. That is part of the process and pumping the fluid back to the surface releases even more metals and toxins from the subsurface rock itself.

Let us also be clear that the industry has been fracking wells for a very long time in many, many places that have not experience any environmental problems. However, where problems exist, the industry has employed the strategy of defend, deflect and deny. When all else fails, payoffs also work.

I support the energy industry in the US and think that we should do everything possible to develop our resources including those in Routt County. There is however a small matter of environmental safety and regulation. We should know every single chemical being used in the process and there should be extensive independent monitoring of the chemicals released in any burnoff or emissions. We simply cannot accept that it is safe just because they say so. Remember, the companies primary motivation is profit and if it is cheaper to burn it off than admit it, guess what.

Remember BP. The bottom line was more important that making sure it was safe.

0

heboprotagonist 2 years, 5 months ago

Funny that a conservative would be touting putting men on the moon as an example of corporate good.

The Space Race was a liberal project (JFK, anyone?) that cost a lot of money with very few benefits. Sure, you could couch it in a "we beat the Russians" argument but that would be like Oregon bragging that they beat Colorado. If anything, getting to the moon was exactly the type of "feel good project" that conservatives usually rail against. And when Bush II suggested we go back to the moon it was conservatives who insisted such a project was a waste of time and money.

I'd love to voice an argument about fracking, but I know when I don't know enough about the subject to get involved. Though on a very surface level I would never condone creating jobs at the expense of the planet, and I never support gaming the system (also known as capitalism).

0

Jeff Kibler 2 years, 5 months ago

I'll take the liberal space race over the liberal war on poverty any day.

Favorite liberal slogans:

"Look in the toilet and what do you see? Goldwater!"

"Don't change dicks in the middle of a screw, vote for Nixon '72!"

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Speaking of Nixon, wasn't it Nixon who gave you greenies the EPA?

Someone puts electricity in Hebo's wires. Someone puts gas in his tank. Someone trucks groceries to his store. Someone grows his food and wine. Someone makes his ski lift go up the hill. But it is not the capitalist enterprises who bring these things to him, for, unlike Hebo, they are "gamers of the system". Hebo has ascended to those sublime heights where there is no want, only enlightenment. Hey Hebo, should you ever again return to our mortal realm, would you be so kind as to bring us a little of whatever that is your smokin, please

0

heboprotagonist 2 years, 5 months ago

There is reality and there is idealism.

My idealism is limited only by the reality that is capitalism.

And while you are correct on two (electricity and groceries) the others I have cut out of my life in an attempt to remove myself from the oppressive thumb of capitalism.

I walk everywhere.

I grow a lot of my own food, but have been programmed to crave a fast-food burger occasionally. Not to mention the elongated winters here put a time limit on what I can grow.

I do not ski. (Capitalism has it's dirty fingerprints all over that industry and I will not take part).

And to be sure, I'll share anything of mine with you. I might not like you, but my ideals are stronger than my passions.

And Sled, I have refrained from speaking to your limited intelligence, self-absorbed politics, etc. etc. I have limited my comments to rebuttal of stated philosophy and argument (previous sentence excluded). I encourage you to do the same. You don't have to like or accept my point of view and I welcome a spirited debate, but the moment you attack me as a person only belittles your own station. I submit that you are better than that and hope that you do not actively seek to prove me wrong.

0

Kristopher Hammond 2 years, 5 months ago

I forget which corporation funded Lewis and Clark. Was it GasFrac or Microsoft?

0

Kristopher Hammond 2 years, 5 months ago

And which corporation was it that decided to help Europe in WWII? Hebo has covered the moon.

There is a place where corporations operate according to pure capitalist principles with almost no cupcake government regulation. Mexico.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Hebo, I understand I have limited intelligence but thanks for pointing that out without "attacking me as a person". At least you admited you participate in capitalism. Thats a good start. Baby steps... But you cant be "a little bit pregnant". You do participate in capitalism to the degree you wish, just like me! Oh, and since you brought it up... Why was it that "we beat the Russians", anyway?? Do you think it might have had something to do with that capitalism thing?

Shawant, Seriously, you really know that little history? You are honestly trying to say that american companies had no part in the moon landing, WWII or the westward expansion??? Really?

0

Kristopher Hammond 2 years, 5 months ago

The corporations didn't conceive the great ideas and goals you admire, sled. Our government did. That is called making policy. Making policy is part of the government's job.

Then our government spent taxpayer money paying huge government contracts to corporations to build the products to carry out its policy.

The corporations made excellent products and procedures (and profits) to get the job done, but they weren't making policy. And they had no skin in the game. They got paid for the gun/tank/body armor/rocket/etc., even if it blew up.

The slave drivers didn't come up with the idea of building pyramids in Egypt, but the pyramids couldn't have been built without them. Give credit where it is due.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Our government has also concieved of some real duds, Shawant. Federal highway system was a good program, for example, but the war on drugs, poverty and Iraq were disasters concieved by government.

My belief is simply that, as government strays farther and farther from its rightful purposes, it becomes less and less effective. Government has no business loaning money to solar companies like Solyndra, giving away "cash for clunkers", letting arms fall into the hands of mexican drug lords, etc.

I think the original point I tried to make was that about the time government thinks it has cornered the private sector the private sector finds a way around it. I find that humorous, not because I think corporations should be allowed to screw-up communities with impunity, but because I think governement screws them up ALL THE TIME and never owns their mistakes. In fact the de-facto method of handling failed government programs is not to get rid of them, but make them bigger.

So, if we are going to give credit where it is due, let us also assign blame for abject failures and stop going back to the same fools and con-men for help.

0

Kristopher Hammond 2 years, 5 months ago

I agree with you on the duds you cited. The cat and mouse game is played out everywhere between the regulators and the regulated---blood doping, anyone?

0

Webby 2 years, 5 months ago

Sled, we all understand that your snowmobile will never run on clean energy to tear up the landscape, but that is beside your point. You say the gov't wants to corner the private sector and the private sector has found a way "around it".
You couldn't be more accurate on this topic because this well was never approved for fracking and surely not the "kind" of fracking they are doing now. Pretty hard to find ANY info on gelled butane.

And PS...they started burning off the butane/other chems sometime over the weekend. It is an absolute shame to see that thing burning off unknown chemicals into the air for all to breathe. It already stinks in the valley.

Wake up people!!!

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

You are right Webby, my sled will "never run on clean energy"... at least not if I have anything to say about it! Cause I love to toke that 2-stroke smoke! But it WILL "tear up the landscape" nonetheless! So watch out.

And thank you for acknowledging that I was right about the inability of county government to control the free flow of fossil fuel from the peoples republic of steamboat.

(free flow of fossil fuel) try saying that 3 times fast

Now, let's get crackin with the frackin...

0

canyonwind 2 years, 5 months ago

skifreelivelove Where are you getting your information or do you just make it up?
1 Acre hemp = 4 Acres of trees Hemp takes 3 months to grow and Trees take a lifetime. 1 Acre of Corn or Maize = 2,500 litres of ethanol. 1 Acre of Hemp = 10,000 litres of ethanol First of all I have always surported new energy sorces and have always hated the fact that we buy so much crude from the middle east. But lets face it, if that WAR PIG OBAMA did not shut down drilling in the Gulf of Mexico there probably be alot less on shore drilling today. But that fool will be out of office in a 14 months our only hope is that the DUMB A$$ REPUBLICANS pick Ron Paul and not Perry or Romney who are just like Obama who is just like Bush. 1 Acre of Hemp = 4 Acres of trees What kind of trees? there are different kinds or trees but since you most likely grew up in Kansas or Nebraska judgeing by your strong surport of ethanol. Is daddy sending your some of that Corporate Welfare money that ethonol corn farmers get? Or is it the ultra GREEN GMO loving Monsanto? Is that how you SKIFREE live love? Are you aware it takes 1.1 gallion of Gasoline energy to produce 1 gallion of Ethonol that is far from green.

Hemp takes 3 months to grow and Trees take a lifetime. You are correct about hemp taking 3 months to grow, but trees take a lifetime??? just what the hell do you mean by LIFETIME the planet is 4,000,000.000 years old. So I gather its ok for daddy back in KANSAS to have his GMO CORN CROP but its not alright for Hard working Families in the Pacific Northwest to have there tree farms and what that has to do with frackin is lost in the Bong Smoke. 1 Acre of Corn or Maize = 2,500 litres of ethanol. 1 Acre of Hemp = 10,000 litres of ethanol These two statements sound like a bunch of Monsato propaganda, I'm sure that ULTRA GREEN corporation already has a GMO Hemp plant ready to grow but they have not payed off enough Congressmen to have exclusive growing rights on their new pest resistant GMO HEMP plant. You seem to be someone that wants GREEN ENERGY like Solar a good way to lower your electric bill or great for off the grid living, but no substitute for our Coal fired power plant out at Hayden and BTW where is all this pollution from this power plant you say you are chocking on. And wind power is a good way to kill alot of birds but it only works when its windy Also Hemp is a great source for a variaty of fiber products but as a energy it is no replacement for oil and Natural Gas and the thing that is so funny Natural Gas is by far the cleanest and cheepest source of energy and if one frack well on Wolf Mountain is gonna make you so sick to where you can't breath maybe you should move out of Northwest Colorado and maybe invest is a vaporizer or quit smoking cigs

0

Webby 2 years, 5 months ago

I just hope we all look into the truth about fracking and the impacts it has on the air, water, and landscape. Don't let your personal FEELINGS get in the way of the TRUTH.

Never argue will a fool. Those from a distance cannot tell who is who.

0

steamboatsconscience 2 years, 5 months ago

U.S. Government Confirms Link Between Earthquakes and Hydraulic Fracturing http://oilprice.com/Energy/Natural-Gas/U.S.-Government-Confirms-Link-Between-Earthquakes-and-Hydraulic-Fracturing.html On 5 November an earthquake measuring 5.6 rattled Oklahoma and was felt as far away as Illinois.

Until two years ago Oklahoma typically had about 50 earthquakes a year, but in 2010, 1,047 quakes shook the state. Why? In Lincoln County, where most of this past weekend's seismic incidents were centered, there are 181 injection wells, according to Matt Skinner, an official from the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, the agency which oversees oil and gas production in the state. Cause and effect? The practice of injecting water into deep rock formations causes earthquakes, both the U.S. Army and the U.S. Geological Survey have concluded. The U.S. natural gas industry pumps a mixture of water and assorted chemicals deep underground to shatter sediment layers containing natural gas, a process called hydraulic fracturing, known more informally as “fracking.” While environmental groups have primarily focused on fracking’s capacity to pollute underground water, a more ominous byproduct emerges from U.S. government studies – that forcing fluids under high pressure deep underground produces increased regional seismic activity. As the U.S. natural gas industry mounts an unprecedented and expensive advertising campaign to convince the public that such practices are environmentally benign, U.S. government agencies have determined otherwise.

0

steamboatsconscience 2 years, 5 months ago

According to the U.S. Army’s Rocky Mountain Arsenal website, the RMA drilled a deep well for disposing of the site’s liquid waste after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency “concluded that this procedure is effective and protective of the environment.” According to the RMA, “The Rocky Mountain Arsenal deep injection well was constructed in 1961, and was drilled to a depth of 12,045 feet” and 165 million gallons of Basin F liquid waste, consisting of “very salty water that includes some metals, chlorides, wastewater and toxic organics” was injected into the well during 1962-1966.

Why was the process halted? “The Army discontinued use of the well in February 1966 because of the possibility that the fluid injection was “triggering earthquakes in the area,” according to the RMA. In 1990, the “Earthquake Hazard Associated with Deep Well Injection--A Report to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency” study of RMA events by Craig Nicholson, and R.I. Wesson stated simply, “Injection had been discontinued at the site in the previous year once the link between the fluid injection and the earlier series of earthquakes was established.”

Twenty-five years later, “possibility” and ‘established” changed in the Environmental Protection Agency’s July 2001 87 page study, “Technical Program Overview: Underground Injection Control Regulations EPA 816-r-02-025,” which reported, “In 1967, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) determined that a deep, hazardous waste disposal well at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal was causing significant seismic events in the vicinity of Denver, Colorado.”

There is a significant divergence between “possibility,” “established” and “was causing,” and the most recent report was a decade ago. Much hydraulic fracturing to liberate shale oil gas in the Marcellus shale has occurred since.

According to the USGS website, under the undated heading, “Can we cause earthquakes? Is there any way to prevent earthquakes?” the agency notes, “Earthquakes induced by human activity have been documented in a few locations in the United States, Japan, and Canada.

The cause was injection of fluids into deep wells for waste disposal and secondary recovery of oil, and the use of reservoirs for water supplies. Most of these earthquakes were minor. The largest and most widely known resulted from fluid injection at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal near Denver, Colorado. In 1967, an earthquake of magnitude 5.5 followed a series of smaller earthquakes. Injection had been discontinued at the site in the previous year once the link between the fluid injection and the earlier series of earthquakes was established.”

0

steamboatsconscience 2 years, 5 months ago

Note the phrase, “Once the link between the fluid injection and the earlier series of earthquakes was established.”

So both the U.S Army and the U.S. Geological Survey over fifty years of research confirm on a federal level that that “fluid injection” introduces subterranean instability and is a contributory factor in inducing increased seismic activity.” How about “causing significant seismic events?”

Fast forward to the present.

Overseas, last month Britain’s Cuadrilla Resources announced that it has discovered huge underground deposits of natural gas in Lancashire, up to 200 trillion cubic feet of gas in all.

On 2 November a report commissioned by Cuadrilla Resources acknowledged that hydraulic fracturing was responsible for two tremors which hit Lancashire and possibly as many as fifty separate earth tremors overall. The British Geological Survey also linked smaller quakes in the Blackpool area to fracking. BGS Dr. Brian Baptie said, “It seems quite likely that they are related,” noting, “We had a couple of instruments close to the site and they show that both events occurred near the site and at a shallow depth.”

But, back to Oklahoma. Austin Holland’s August 2011 report, “Examination of Possibly Induced Seismicity from Hydraulic Fracturing in the Eola Field, Garvin County, Oklahoma” Oklahoma Geological Survey OF1-2011, studied 43 earthquakes that occurred on 18 January, ranging in intensity from 1.0 to 2.8 Md (milliDarcies.) While the report’s conclusions are understandably cautious, it does state, “Our analysis showed that shortly after hydraulic fracturing began small earthquakes started occurring, and more than 50 were identified, of which 43 were large enough to be located.”

Sensitized to the issue, the oil and natural gas industry has been quick to dismiss the charges and deluge the public with a plethora of televisions advertisements about how natural gas from shale deposits is not only America’s future, but provides jobs and energy companies are responsible custodians of the environment.

It seems likely that Washington will eventually be forced to address the issue, as the U.S. Army and the USGS have noted a causal link between the forced injection of liquids underground and increased seismic activity. While the Oklahoma quake caused a deal of property damage, had lives been lost, the policy would most certainly have come under increased scrutiny from the legal community.

While polluting a local community’s water supply is a local tragedy barely heard inside the Beltway, an earthquake ranging from Oklahoma to Illinois, Kansas, Arkansas, Tennessee and Texas is an issue that might yet shake voters out of their torpor, and national elections are slightly less than a year away.

By. John C.K. Daly of Oilprice.com

0

sedgemo 2 years, 5 months ago

I attended the screening last night of "Split Estate" at the library, and (among other things) it made mention that private oil/gas companies fracking underground are exempt from the Federal Clean Water Act, the Federal Clean Air Act, and a list of others I couldn't write down fast enough. Can anyone tell me how they can be exempt from these Federal laws, if true? Example after example was provided in the film of tainted/poluted ground and well water, with no recourse to the surface owners and residents.

0

grundy 2 years, 5 months ago

This just in. Apparently it may not be unpossible for fracking to contaminate drinking water supplies:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/45246260/ns/us_news-environment/

sedgemo,

You can thank Congress for exempting fracking from the scope of SDWA, CWA, & CAA as part of the 2005 energy act. This was basically a successful lobbying effort by the gas industry and supported by the white house administration, Cheney being a notable player. Of course, all the uproar over foreign oil dependency provided some nice political capital.

Just to be clear, fracking is not totally absolved from CWA regulations. What comes back out of the ground (flowback) would be regulated under the NPDES program if they discharge the waste into navigable water.

If you look at the history of environmental regulations, there is a consistent pattern - a catastrophe must occur before the government will oppose industrial interests.

0

grundy 2 years, 5 months ago

I might add that the EPA is very rigorous about conclusively proving a causal relationship between industrial activity and pollution. As you might imagine, the energy industry gets pretty litigious if the evidence is not bulletproof. This creates quite a burden in the case of fracking because you either have to prove the migratory path of contaminants through the earth (more or less impossible) or prove that the contaminant could not possibly have originated from another source. Since, the chemical makeups of fracking fluids have been shrouded in mystery under the pretext of proprietary status, establishing a causal link has been even more difficult. Fortunately CO now requires disclosure of the chemical composition of fracking fluids. Unfortunately, not all states do.

0

sedgemo 2 years, 5 months ago

What about testing wells pre-and-post fracking? One person at the film screening mentioned there were people employed by the oil industry walking her neighborhood seeking permission to test their wells... but would keep the information proprietary. It seems ludicrous to me to expect groundwater and wells NOT to be contaminated. The hydrologic cycle quite literally shows what goes around comes around.

0

sedgemo 2 years, 5 months ago

Grundy, I just reviewed the link you provided, and wanted to pass along something else from the Split Estate film which made it pretty clear that if you can't or shouldn't drink the water, you certainly should not bathe in it either. You can ingest more toxins through your skin (the largest human organ) than through drinking.

0

grundy 2 years, 5 months ago

Pre- and post- frac testing might prove contamination from fracking activities, if the contaminants do not exist naturally or as a result of other human activities that could concievably be the source. If there's any chance they could have come from another source, you would have to prove they did not. A signature chemical of fracking fluid is the best chance of making a defendable link. That, in part, is why the news out of Pavillioncould be quite meaningful.

Yes, bathing in contaminated water could be dangerous. The risk would be dependent on the toxins but then that's probably a mystery...

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

I hope you guys get fracking totaly shut down. I'm long Nat gas and can't wait till it goes ten-bag.

0

kathy foos 2 years, 5 months ago

This will never be the Oil waste that you want Sledneck.Itching to get rich are ya?Or just want to see our beautiful Valley fouled?You call me and others lunatics for protecting lands water,you seem like the joker from BATMAN to me.It will never be like YOU want with polluting this area.You love natural gas so much ,what about how they just burn it off in Jackson County,?Wasting your precious Natural Gas?Any children reading this,just know that there are only a few oil hogs like this in the community,we out vote them by a mile. Quicksilvers name says it all,just concerned with a Quik buck.I hope you dont find a thing you want and just wasted some money for nothing,get sued for ruining our area,and never come back.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Oh, forgot the 20,000 jobs that this "shovel ready" project would have created. So who is obstructing job creation here, Sun? Hmmm? Greenies, that's who!

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

And even if the pipeline carried rainbows and unicorns the greenies would STILL oppose it.

0

grundy 2 years, 5 months ago

In regards to sled's 11/11/11 10am post...

Pilot, I ask you again - how many times does someone get to violate the user agreement before being banned?

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Thin skin, eh Grundy? Don't hear you complaining about the posts on YVB's wall.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Hey Grundy, I took a little trip dowm memory lane just now. Are these your past comments?:

"...we sure as hell don't need more turons..." April 3 2008 "... a bunch of greedy corporate scumbags..." April 3 2008 "... idiots like..." May 6 2010 "... the fools who hold..." May 6 2010 " F' ing brilliant." May 6 2010 "Our park sux too." Oct 8 2010

What was it you said? "Way to keep it Klassy, I think it was...
Glass houses, I say. Why not lighten up a bit and see the humor rather than taking things so personally? A lot of people obviously enjoy trading barbs on this blog and no one gets hurt. Relax, man.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

Pilot, You have left posts up with people saying how cute it would be to see me doin falatio on my tailpipe. I never complained. You have left post on YVB's wall calling him a "pussy" and calling him and his family "losers". You left these posts up that I cited above, one of which uses a word that is INTERCHANGEABLE with the word I used this morning.

I have never complained about being name-called. I have never asked you to remove anything.

Removing my earlier post was Very Weak. Nevertheless, I will try to use more "grown-up" language in the future.

BTW, how do I find a copy of the user agreement? I can't find it.

0

grundy 2 years, 5 months ago

Sled, you are mistaken as usual. I am not offended by your highly creative names for liberals and environmentalists. That comment was removed because of your use of racist slurs, which is where the line gets drawn. I don't expect you to get that anymore than you get anything else that contradicts your entrenched point of views. You are clearly someone who thinks you can behave like a racist but not actually be a racist. I try not to read your posts and I try not to read YVB's either, but you happened to inject your vitriol into a place that caught my eye. Sorry, dude, but I think you are the one who needs to relax, man.

0

sledneck 2 years, 5 months ago

You know, I really love chumming for dingbats. Sometimes, no sooner than you start, you find they were right under the boat the whole time. Hee hee hee... Oops, is "dingbats" on the list?

Grundy, Racist slurs??? What race did I slur? It seems quite "stereotypical" of you to assume that all muslims are of a particular race. Tisk tisk

So those WERE your past posts? The ones about scumbags, idiots, turons and fools??? Funny; my statements are " injected vitriol" while yours, I suppose, are nectar from the gods. Pot...kettle, methinks.

0

Requires free registration

Posting comments requires a free account and verification.