Did the Feds Open up 400,000 California Acres to Fracking in a Water Crisis? By REBEKAH KEARN

The federal and state governments illegally opened up 400,000 acres for fracking in Southern California, which already has thousands of such dangerous oil and gas wells, environmentalists claim in court. The Center for Biological Diversity and Los Padres Forestwatch sued the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, the Secretary of the Interior and the director of California’s Bureau of Land Management …

Drilling & Nuclear Power in the Arctic by ROBERT HUNZIKER

In the farthest regions of the north, the Russians have already drilled, but the Americans are coming. Shell makes preparation to drill. So it is, the most distant Northern Hemisphere will never be the same. Not only that, but astonishingly, Russia is doubling down on its risky energy play with grandiose plans to power Arctic drill rigs with floating nuclear …

Obama

Obama’s Catastrophic Climate-Change Denial – BILL McKIBBEN

THE Obama administration’s decision to give Shell Oil the go-ahead to drill in the Arctic shows why we may never win the fight against climate change. Even in this most extreme circumstance, no one seems able to stand up to the power of the fossil fuel industry. No one ever says no. By “extreme” I don’t just mean that Shell …

Dust Bowl

Could Fracking Spark a Modern-Day Dust Bowl? – Tim Radford

Oil wells and natural gas may have made individual Americans rich, but they have impoverished the great plains of North America, according to new research. Fossil fuel prospectors have sunk 50,000 new wells a year since 2000 in three Canadian provinces and 11 U.S. states, and have damaged the foundation of all economic growth: net primary production—otherwise known as biomass, or …

Fracking-Induced Earthquakes Highlighted in New USGS Map – Lauren McCauley

The U.S. Geological Survey on Thursday released a landmark new study and map highlighting the location and frequency of earthquakes thought to be caused by human activities such as drilling or hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. In a statement, the USGS said that the sharp increase in earthquake activity in the central and eastern United States since 2009 “is linked to industrial operations …

texas quakes

Study links swarm of quakes in Texas to natural gas drilling – Seth Borenstein

With real-time monitors, scientists have linked a swarm of small earthquakes west of Fort Worth, Texas, to nearby natural gas wells and wastewater injection. In 84 days from November 2013 to January 2014, the area around Azle, Texas, shook with 27 magnitude 2 or greater earthquakes, while scientists at Southern Methodist University and the U.S. Geological Survey monitored the shaking. …

offshore drilling

US Plans New Offshore Drilling Rules, But Questions Remain

The U.S. is set to announce new regulations on offshore oil and gas drilling as an increased safeguard against disasters like the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico, according to reports from Obama administration officials who spoke to the New York Times on Friday. The announcement, which could come as soon as Monday, is set to be timed with the five-year …

Dry California

In Dry California, Thirsty Oil and Big-Ag Industries Exempt from Water Regulations

As California Governor Jerry Brown this week instituted the state’s first-ever mandatory restrictions on water usage to combat its historic four-year drought, environmental activists are pointing out two glaring exemptions from the order: the fossil fuel and agriculture industries. Brown’s mandate, announced Wednesday, directs cities and communities to cut down their water consumption by 25 percent, but does not make …

fracking-infographic

Fracking Town’s Desperate Laid-off Workers: ‘They Don’t Tell You It’s All a Lie’

From the looks of it, the nation’s boomtown is still booming. Big rigs, cement mixers and oil tankers still clog streets built for lighter loads. The air still smells like diesel fuel and looks like a dust bowl— all that traffic — and natural gas flares, wasted byproducts of the oil wells, still glare out at the night sky like …

organic-farm-go-organic

11% of organic farms near drilling in US, potentially 31% in future

Currently, 11% (2,140 of 19,515 total) of all U.S. organic farms share a watershed with active O&G drilling. Additionally, this percentage could rise up to 31% if unconventional O&G drilling continues to grow. Organic farms represent something pure for citizens around the world. They produce food that gives people more certainty about consuming chemical-free nutrients in a culture that is …