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Posts Tagged ‘fracking’

Colorado Towns Pass Fracking Moratoria, Bans Despite Big Spending by the Oil and Gas Industry

Does money in politics matter? Many (including UCS) would say yes. It can sway elections, influence what should be fact-based decision making, and determine who can run for office in the first place. But yesterday when it came to questions of whether or not three Colorado communities wanted to allow hydraulic fracturing within their borders, money did not win the day. Read More

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Congress Wants to Keep the Feds Out of Fracking: Bad Idea

In July, before our Science and Democracy forum on fracking, I wrote about the important role the federal government has to play, working with state and local government, to address the risks of hydraulic fracturing and the associated development of unconventional oil and gas resources. Apparently, members of the U.S. House of Representatives didn’t read my blog. Read More

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Clearing the Air on Fracking: Reflections from our Recent Webinar

When citizens have questions about hydraulic fracturing, where do they turn? In our recent webinar, Fracking: Advancing a Science-Informed Debate, myself and my colleague Andrew Rosenberg, the director of the Center for Science and Democracy at UCS, did our best to convey as much information as possible from our recent report, Toward an Evidence-based Fracking Debate. Read More

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Editorial Writers Consider the Water Crisis, Informed by UCS Experts

I was in Newport, Rhode Island for a conference of the Association of Opinion Journalists October 13 through 16. It was wonderful to escape the fog of Capitol Hill and be in the company of rational, thoughtful people who did not dispute the reality of human-caused climate change. Read More

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Fracking and Community Action: Make Your Voice Heard!

with Kate Konschnik, Policy Director, Environmental Law and Policy Program, Harvard Law School

Hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) is unlocking unconventional oil and gas resources and transforming our energy profile. Within the last decade, we have seen a steady uptick in domestic oil and gas production, a dramatic drop in American natural gas prices, and the retirement of old coal plants forced out of the market by more efficient gas-fired energy. We’ve seen oil and gas production in places where it never before existed, and a remarkable scale and intensity of development. Read More

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Fracking and My Community’s Socioeconomic Stability: Will My Boomtown Go Bust?

with Susan Christopherson, Ph.D. Professor, Cornell University, Department of City and Regional Planning

The U.S. conversation surrounding recent oil and gas development through hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) and newer technologies like horizontal drilling frequently centers around risks to the environment—to water and air—and to public health. At the national level, these risks are juxtaposed against the promise of jobs and energy independence. Read More

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Fracking and My Community’s Air Quality: Is There Something in the Air?

with Daniel Tormey, Ph.D., P.G.; Technical Director, Cardno ENTRIX

Los Angeles, California

If you’ve been following the discussion of pollution risks around the unconventional oil and gas development that has been enabled by hydraulic fracturing and other technologies, then you’ve probably heard a lot about water contamination risks. These risks are certainly worth discussing, but discussion of air pollution risks also deserves some attention. We want to take the time to talk about air quality concerns—not just because this is where Gretchen’s past interests lie—but also because current research suggests there may be real risks from air pollution near oil and gas activities. Read More

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Is Fracking Safe? What Science Can and Cannot Tell Us About Risk

Citizens around the country are concerned—with good reasons—about how unconventional oil and gas development (commonly the entire development process is referred to as “fracking”) will affect them and their families. As we learned at the recent UCS Center for Science and Democracy’s Branscomb forum, Science, Democracy, and Community Decisions on Fracking, people want to know the facts. What are the benefits of development? What are the risks? How will my community change? But for many, the concerns ultimately boil down to the most pressing of the questions:

Is fracking safe? Read More

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Survey Says? Forum Attendees Shed Light on the Public’s Discussion on Hydraulic Fracturing

Following the Center for Science and Democracy’s second successful Branscomb forum this past July, Science, Democracy, and Community Decisions on Fracking, we released a toolkit to help communities become more actively engaged on this important issue: Science, Democracy, and Fracking: A Guide for Community Residents and Policy Makers Facing Decisions over Hydraulic Fracturing. Read More

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A Change We Didn’t See Coming: Hydraulic Fracturing and Sand Mining in Wisconsin

Guest Bogger

Marcia Bjornerud, professor of geology
Dept. of Geology, Lawrence University

Appleton, WI

If someone had told me 10 years ago that the rural landscape just west of my home in Appleton would be stripped down and shipped to states throughout the country, I never would have believed it. In fact, no one here in Wisconsin could have imagined that there would ever be much industrial demand for the honey-colored Cambrian sandstones that crop out in a wide swath across the middle of the state. There were a few quarries that supplied sand for foundry molds, but since foundries can reuse sand many times, these local operations had little effect on the landscape. Wisconsin’s sandstones had only two major ‘uses’: acting as groundwater aquifers and defining the shape of the distinctive chimney rocks and castellated mounds of the state’s scenic, never-glaciated Driftless Area. Read More

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