Thursday, December 29, 2011

Canada trails USA in risk awareness

Canadian media doesn't provide much detail but ProPublica, the American non-profit doing fine investigative reporting, is examining dangers of gas and oil production through hydraulic fracturing. In an earlier article here, we linked to ProPublica's report on unregulated fracking in BC and Alberta.

Today, Abrahm Lustgarten, the reporter with an admirable portfolio on energy subjects, updates one of ProPublica's major investigations:
"This was the year that "fracking" became a household word.

"It wasn't just that environmental concerns about the underground drilling process finally struck a mainstream chord -- after three years of reporting and more than 125 stories. For the first time, independent scientific investigations linked the drilling technique with water pollution, and a variety of federal and state agencies responded to the growing apprehension about water contamination with more studies and more regulation.

"The most important development -- and perhaps a crucial turning point -- was in December. In a landmark finding, the Environmental Protection Agency concluded that hydraulic fracturing was the likely culprit in a spate of groundwater contamination that had forced residents to stop using their water in dozens of homes in central Wyoming. The agency had been investigating since 2008.

"Earlier in the year, a study published through the National Academy of Sciences determined that in Pennsylvania, private water wells in close proximity to fracked gas wells were 17 times more likely to be contaminated with methane gas.

"Those studies are separate from a national research project the EPA has undertaken to assess the risks fracking poses to water resources..."

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  1. There is a remarkable difference between best and worst practices in energy production but we cannot trust industry to choose best practices unless the public exercises stringent oversight.

    BC government doesn't seem to care about industry using best practices.

  2. The BC Liberal government just doesn't care period. At least it seems that way - environmental issues are of no consequence to the challenged ministers that "in charge " !!!!

    Greed, greed and more greed - the BC Liberal creed !!!! Fat corporate pigs at the public feeding trough - whining for more and snorting when people complain !

    What a crazy world we live in where crime goes unpunished and lies get government backing - truth, honesty and integrity gone.




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