Oil & Gas Drilling

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Oil & Gas Drilling

#1

Post by Addie » Wed Apr 17, 2019 12:54 pm

NPR
Colorado's Oil And Gas Regulators Must Now Consider Public Health And Safety

After years of tension over expanded oil and gas drilling, including a deadly explosion that galvanized critics, Colorado is moving to tighten regulations on the booming industry. In a sweeping overhaul the governor is expected to sign, regulators will now have to consider public health, safety and the environment in decisions about permitting and local land use.

The state must still hammer out the details of how to implement the new law over the next year. But the impending changes are already fueling hope for some, and fear for others. ...

Greeley is the epicenter of Colorado's oil and gas development. Weld County is where 90 percent of Colorado's oil is pumped, and the region hosts oil companies, secondary companies that truck water and supplies to well pads, and companies like Smith's that depend on business from the oil fields. Many who live in Greeley oppose the changes. ...

The new law would give cities and counties more control over where oil wells go. It would also shift the state's mandate from fostering oil and gas development to regulating it, with a focus on the environment and people's safety. The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission will get new members with environmental and public health expertise.

The legislation also launches rule-makings in half a dozen areas, including flow lines, and limiting potent methane leaks from oil and gas infrastructure.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#2

Post by Addie » Sat Apr 20, 2019 3:19 pm

CNN
Report finds 'alarming unaddressed deficiencies' in US offshore oil drilling

(CNN) Even as the Trump administration has taken steps to expand offshore oil drilling, a new report shows that thousands of oil spills are still happening and that workers in the oil and gas industry are still dying on the job.

The report comes from Oceana, a nonpartisan nonprofit dedicated to protecting and restoring the oceans, which has sued the federal government to stop seismic airgun blasting in the Atlantic Ocean. The blasting is the first step needed to allow offshore drilling, when seismic airguns are used to find oil and gas deep under the ocean.

Every state along the Atlantic coast has opposed the blasting, worried that spills could hurt tourism and local fisheries. Some scientists say the testing could also hurt marine life, including the highly endangered North Atlantic right whale.

The group tied its report, released Thursday, to the ninth anniversary of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill to show what has been happening since the government promised to hold the industry accountable to higher safety standards. ...

Using public records and interviews with people in the field, Oceana found that although there hasn't been another big blowout like the Deepwater accident, oil spills continue, and so do fatalities, though they're not often front-page news.

There were at least 6,500 oil spills in US waters between 2007 and 2017, according to the report, which said that's probably an undercount. Despite a decrease in fatality rates overall as an industry, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the fatality rate of oil and gas industry workers, onshore and off-, was an average of seven times higher than that of other US workers in general between 2003 and 2013.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#3

Post by Addie » Thu Apr 25, 2019 5:54 pm

New York Times
Interior Dept. Delays Its Plan to Open U.S. Coastline to Drilling

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration on Thursday confirmed that it will likely delay the release of a long-awaited plan that had been expected to open most of the nation’s coastline for offshore oil drilling, pending the final outcome of a recent court decision that blocks drilling off the Alaskan coast.

The delay appears to be an acknowledgment that the court decision is a significant setback for what President Trump has called his policy of “energy dominance” — an effort to rapidly expand oil and gas drilling across the country.

The reason given for the delay was a March decision by a federal judge in Alaska to reinstate an Obama-era ban on Arctic drilling. “Given the recent court decision, the Department is simply evaluating all of its options to determine the best pathway to accomplish the mission entrusted to it by the President,” a spokeswoman for the Interior Department, Molly Block, wrote in an email.

The delay was reported by The Wall Street Journal, quoting the Interior Department’s new secretary, David Bernhardt, as saying, “By the time the court rules, that may be discombobulating to our plan,” adding, “What if you guess wrong?” in reference to the uncertain outcome of the legal appeals process.

The delay is the latest legal stumble in Mr. Trump’s effort to roll back environmental protections and increase fossil fuel production. Experts in environmental law estimate that, in its quest to quickly undo existing environmental protections, the administration has now lost about 40 cases in federal courts.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#4

Post by Addie » Fri Apr 26, 2019 12:55 pm

DESMOG
EPA Decides Not to Regulate Fracking Wastewater as Pennsylvania Study Reveals Recent Spike

On April 23, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) told two environmental groups that it had decided it was “not necessary” to update the federal standards handling toxic waste from oil and gas wells, including the waste produced by fracking.

State regulators have repeatedly proved unable to prevent the industry’s toxic waste from entering America’s drinking water supplies, including both private wells and the rivers from which public drinking water supplies are drawn, the Environmental Protection Agency concluded in a 2017 national study.

The corrosive salt-laden wastewater from fracked wells has been spread on roads as a de-icer. It’s been sprayed into the air in the hopes of evaporating the water — a practice that spreads its blend of volatile chemicals into the air instead. Oil industry wastewater has even been used to irrigate crops — in California, where state regulators haven't set rules to keep dangerous chemicals like the carcinogen benzene out of irrigation water.

If equally contaminated waste came from other industries, it would usually be designated hazardous waste and subject to strict tracking and disposal rules designed to keep the public safe from industrial pollution. But in July 1988, after burying clear warnings from its own scientists about the hazards of oilfield waste, the EPA offered the oil and gas industry a broad exemption from hazardous waste handling laws.

The EPA's decision this week echoes that.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#5

Post by Addie » Sat Apr 27, 2019 12:21 pm

Seismological Society of America
Studies Link Earthquakes to Fracking in the Central and Eastern United States

25 April 2019–Small earthquakes in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Oklahoma and Texas can be linked to hydraulic fracturing wells in those regions, according to researchers speaking at the SSA 2019 Annual Meeting.

While relatively rare compared to earthquakes caused by wastewater disposal in oil and gas fields in the central United States, Michael Brudzinski of Miami University in Ohio and his colleagues have identified more than 600 small earthquakes (between magnitude 2.0 and 3.8) in these states.

Brudzinski said these earthquakes may be “underappreciated” compared to seismicity related to wastewater disposal since they appear to happen less frequently. He and his colleagues are studying the trends related to the likelihood of induced seismicity from hydraulic fracturing or fracking, which could help industry and state regulators better manage drilling practices.

Unconventional U.S. oil production, which extracts oil from shales and tight rocks using a variety of drilling techniques, has been linked to an increase in human-induced earthquakes across the mid-continent of the United States for nearly a decade. Researchers studying the increase in places such as Oklahoma think that the main driver of this increase in seismicity is the injection of wastewater produced by extraction back into rock layers, which increases pore pressure within rocks and can affect stress along faults in layers selected for disposal.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#6

Post by Addie » Thu May 16, 2019 10:48 am

Associated Press
NY denies natural gas pipeline expansion permit

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — State environmental regulators on Wednesday denied a water quality permit for a 24-mile (39-kilometer) underwater pipeline from New Jersey to Queens that backers say is crucial for meeting rising demand for natural gas in New York City and Long Island.

The Northeast Supply Enhancement project would expand the Transco pipeline, which extends from Texas to the Northeast coast. It would allow National Grid to bring natural gas from Pennsylvania’s shale gas fields to the metropolitan region.

The pipeline is opposed by environmental groups who say it threatens marine life and extends reliance on fossil fuels rather than renewable energy sources.

In denying the permit, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation said the project “fails to meet New York State’s rigorous water quality standards” and “would cause impacts to habitats due to the disturbance of shellfish beds and other benthic resources.”

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#7

Post by Addie » Sat May 18, 2019 8:49 am

Inside Climate News
Midwest Flooding Exposes Another Oil Pipeline Risk — on Keystone XL’s Route

Rushing rivers have exposed once-buried pipelines before, leading to oil spills. With climate change exacerbating flood risks, Keystone XL critics see dangers ahead.


NAPER, Nebraska — Standing on the banks of the Keya Paha River where it cuts through his farm, Bob Allpress points across a flat expanse of sand to where a critical shut-off valve is supposed to rise from the Keystone XL pipeline once it's buried in his land. The Keya Paha flooded several weeks ago, and when it did, the rush of newly melted water drove debris, sand and huge chunks of ice deep inland, mowing down trees and depositing a long wall of ice 6 feet high and 30 feet wide across Allpress's property. ...

Opponents of Keystone XL have successfully stymied the project's completion for years with legal challenges over threats to regional drinking-water aquifers, streams, wildlife habitat and the global climate. The pipeline would carry tar sands crude 1,200 miles from Hardisty, Canada, to Steele City, Nebraska, where it would connect to other pipelines to Gulf Coast refineries.

After extensive environmental reviews, the Obama administration refused to grant the project a presidential permit, finding that it was not in the national interest. President Trump reversed that decision, but environmentalists claimed the project needed a new environmental impact statement before it could proceed, in part because of a new route through Nebraska, and so far the courts have agreed. ...

Without adequate environmental review, grave risks such as flooding and erosion "haven't been analyzed and the pipeline is going to go forward without agencies fully understanding risks and threats to the project," said Doug Hayes, a lawyer for the Sierra Club, which is a plaintiff in the suits.

The threat to pipelines from erosion prompted the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the federal regulator responsible for the safe operation of the country's energy pipelines, to issue an advisory two weeks ago to pipeline owners. It urged them to institute safeguards after a recent spate of accidents from soil shifting around pipelines. In the last decade, fast currents and high floodwaters exposed two pipelines in the Yellowstone River in Montana that both ruptured, leaking a total of about 93,000 gallons of oil.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#8

Post by Addie » Thu May 30, 2019 10:32 am

Ars Technica
US Department of Energy is now referring to fossil fuels as “freedom gas”

The Department of Energy is on its path to "energy dominance" with bizarre re-branding. ...


The press release was fairly standard, announcing the expansion of a Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) terminal at the Freeport facility on Quintana Island, Texas. It would have gone unnoticed had an E&E News reporter not noted the unique metonymy "molecules of US freedom."

DOE Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Steven Winberg is quoted as saying, "With the US in another year of record-setting natural gas production, I am pleased that the Department of Energy is doing what it can to promote an efficient regulatory system that allows for molecules of US freedom to be exported to the world.”

Also in the press release, US Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes refers to natural gas as "freedom gas" in his quote: “Increasing export capacity from the Freeport LNG project is critical to spreading freedom gas throughout the world by giving America’s allies a diverse and affordable source of clean energy."

Slate notes that the term "freedom gas" seems to have originated from an event with DOE Secretary Rick Perry. Earlier this year, the secretary signed an order to double the amount of LNG exports to Europe, saying, “The United States is again delivering a form of freedom to the European continent. And rather than in the form of young American soldiers, it’s in the form of liquefied natural gas.”
Adding:
The Hill: Trump energy officials label natural gas 'freedom gas'

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#9

Post by Foggy » Thu May 30, 2019 12:35 pm

Of course, only natural gas from the USA is freedom gas. Natural gas from any other country is treason gas.
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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#10

Post by ZekeB » Thu May 30, 2019 12:41 pm

Foggy wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 12:35 pm
Of course, only natural gas from the USA is freedom gas. Natural gas from any other country is treason gas.
Canada's gas too, also. What would John Candy say?
Trump: Er hat eine größere Ente als ich.

Putin: Du bist kleiner als ich.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#11

Post by RTH10260 » Thu May 30, 2019 12:43 pm

crossposting
The Department of Energy Is Now Referring to Natural Gas as ‘Freedom Gas’
By Matt Stieb

On May 7, Energy Secretary Rick Perry — the dark-horse pick for Trump’s most competent Cabinet member — announced in Brussels that the U.S. intends to double liquefied natural gas exports to Europe by 2020. Comparing energy diversification to the American effort to liberate occupied Europe in World War II, Perry said that “the United States is again delivering a form of freedom to the European continent.” The Energy secretary added, “Rather than in the form of young American soldiers, it’s in the form of liquefied natural gas.”

Hoping to clarify the bizarre analogy, a European reporter asked if “freedom gas” would accurately describe American natural gas shipments to Europe. “I think you may be correct in your observation,” Perry replied. With this frighteningly dumb exchange, the term “freedom gas” was born, and less than a month later, it is appearing in official DOE press releases.

On Tuesday, the DOE sent out an official letter announcing the expansion of a liquid natural gas depot in Texas, in which Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes borrowed the term coined in Europe: “Increasing export capacity from the Freeport LNG project is critical to spreading freedom gas throughout the world by giving America’s allies a diverse and affordable source of clean energy.” Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Steven Winberg assured fans of liquefied natural gas that, even on a molecular level, the stuff is dripping with patriotism. “I am pleased that the Department of Energy is doing what it can to promote an efficient regulatory system that allows for molecules of U.S. freedom to be exported to the world,” Winberg said.

The last decade of skyrocketing natural gas output in the United States has transformed the American energy portfolio to the point that the U.S. Energy Information Administration expects the country to be a net exporter of energy as soon as 2020. For those like Secretary Perry, relatively unconcerned with the wholesale collapse of the environment, the boom in liquid natural gas has granted a sense of freedom from America’s postwar reliance on foreign energy. But for advocates demanding a revolution in clean energy, the country’s shift to natural gas means that another fossil fuel is dominating the U.S. electricity mix.


http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/05/ ... m-gas.html

Comment: sounds to me as the adminsitration is apearing to start a new "war" that on the European Nord Stream pipeline project with gas delivered from Russia.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#12

Post by Jim » Thu May 30, 2019 1:44 pm

RTH10260 wrote:
Thu May 30, 2019 12:43 pm
Comment: sounds to me as the adminsitration is apearing to start a new "war" that on the European Nord Stream pipeline project with gas delivered from Russia.
Well, that will be until Putin complains to Trump...then "Freedom gas" will be killed and Perry will be blamed. This administration is so predictable.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#13

Post by vic » Thu May 30, 2019 2:15 pm

Freedom gas is the natural byproduct of eating too many freedom fries

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#14

Post by RoadScholar » Thu May 30, 2019 2:20 pm

:like:
The bitterest truth is healthier than the sweetest lie.
X3

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#15

Post by Addie » Wed Jun 05, 2019 9:13 am

Denver Post
Communities around Rocky Flats unite against oil and gas drilling near former nuclear weapons plant

Rocky Flats Stewardship Council’s resolution comes 7 months after controversy over proposed drilling on border of refuge


BROOMFIELD — Leaders from nearly a dozen cities and counties surrounding Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge spoke with one voice Monday, formalizing their opposition to future oil and gas drilling on or under the land where plutonium triggers for the nation’s nuclear arsenal were manufactured for decades.

The resolution, passed unanimously by the Rocky Flats Stewardship Council with Jefferson County abstaining, comes seven months after residents in nearby Superior rose up in fierce opposition to a plan by an energy company to drill up to 31 wells underneath the refuge. The company, Highlands Natural Resources Corp., backed off its plan following the public outcry.

But the company’s proposal late last year, and the ensuing fight against it, spawned an effort by Superior to get the stewardship council — tasked with providing ongoing oversight of the post-closure management of Rocky Flats — to take a hard stand on mineral extraction near the site of a former industrial facility long criticized for the environmental damage it wrought on the land and the potential hazards residual contaminants, like deadly plutonium, still pose today.

Representatives from Boulder, Arvada, Golden, Broomfield, Superior, Thornton, Northglenn and Westminster, as well as Jefferson and Boulder counties, serve on the council. They met Monday at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport in Broomfield.

“This is a special property with special environmental considerations that needs heightened scrutiny before anything goes forward,” said Mark Lacis, a town trustee in Superior who sits on the stewardship council. “I think it’s important to raise awareness.”

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#16

Post by Jim » Tue Jul 09, 2019 2:08 pm

Exxon’s Pro-Fracking CEO Is Suing to Stop Fracking Near His Mansion
Fancy a side of irony with your corporate hypocrisy? Last night on MSNBC, Nation Editor-at-Large Chris Hayes profiled ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, a vocal proponent of hydraulic fracking, who is suing to prevent the construction of a water tower near his eighty-three-acre, $5 million horse ranch in Bartonville, Texas. The purpose of the tower? Storing water for fracking. Tillerson and his super-wealthy neighbors are concerned, the lawsuit states, that the fracking tower might “devalue their properties and adversely impact the rural lifestyle they sought to enjoy.” As Hayes put it, “Rex Tillerson is leading the fracking revolution, just not in his backyard.”
But if it's OUR backyard, it's OK for him to screw us, as long as he makes his millions.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#17

Post by Addie » Mon Jul 22, 2019 6:59 am

Newsweek
Live Near an Oil or Gas Well? Mothers in Areas of Intense Production More Likely to Have Children With Heart Defects, Study Claims

Mothers living near oil and natural gas wells in Colorado have a higher chance of giving birth to children with heart defects, research suggests.

A team of scientists from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus found an increased prevalence of vascular problems in "oil and gas activity areas," including defects affecting the pulmonary artery and valve; and the aortic artery and valve, according to a study published in the Journal Environment International.

Overall, the team found that mothers in these areas were between 40 and 70 percent more likely to have children with congenital heart defects (CHDs).

"This may be something people may want to consider in the decisions they are making," Lisa McKenzie, senior author of the study, told FOX31 Denver.

According to the scientists, the latest study was conducted to address the limitations of previous preliminary studies that indicated the offspring of mothers living near oil and gas wells were at higher risk of CHDs.

For the study, the team examined data on 3,324 infants born in Colorado between 2005 and 2011, estimating the monthly intensities of oil and gas activity near the homes of the respective mothers from three months prior to conception through to the second month of pregnancy.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#18

Post by Addie » Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:59 am

Associated Press
Trump to promote turning natural gas into plastics in Pa.

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, N.J. (AP) — Trying to hold support in the manufacturing towns that helped him win the White House in 2016, President Donald Trump is showcasing growing efforts to capitalize on western Pennsylvania’s natural gas deposits by turning gas into plastics.

Trump will be in Monaca, about 40 minutes north of Pittsburgh, on Tuesday to tour Shell’s soon-to-be completed Pennsylvania Petrochemicals Complex. The facility, which critics claim will become the largest air polluter in western Pennsylvania, is being built in an area hungry for investment.

The focus is part of a continued push by the Trump administration to increase the economy’s dependence on fossil fuels in defiance of increasingly urgent warnings about climate change. And it’s an embrace of plastic at a time when the world is sounding alarms over its ubiquity and impact.

Trump’s appeals to blue-collar workers helped him win Beaver County, where the plant is located, by more than 18 percentage points in 2016, only to have voters turn to Democrats in 2018′s midterm elections. In one of a series of defeats that led to Republicans’ loss of the House, voters sent Democrat Conor Lamb to Congress after the prosperity promised by Trump’s tax cuts failed to materialize.

Today, Beaver County is still struggling to recover from the shuttering of steel plants in the 1980s that surged the unemployment rate to nearly 30%. Former mill towns like Aliquippa have seen their populations shrink, while Pittsburgh has lured major tech companies like Google and Uber, fueling an economic renaissance in a city that reliably votes Democratic.

The region’s natural gas deposits had been seen, for a time, as its new road to prosperity, with drilling in the Marcellus Shale reservoir transforming Pennsylvania into the nation’s No. 2 natural gas state. But drops in the price of oil and gas caused the initial jobs boom from fracking to fizzle, leading companies like Shell to turn instead to plastics and so-called cracker plants — named after the process in which molecules are broken down at high heat, turning fracked ethane gas into one of the precursors for plastic.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#19

Post by AndyinPA » Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:17 pm

At the same time, there are other power plants right there that are shutting down. The new plant will not do anything good for air quality here. :x

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#20

Post by TexasFilly » Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:45 pm

Because Shell has such a good safety and environmental record. :roll:
I love the poorly educated!!!

I believe Anita Hill! I believe Dr. Ford!

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#21

Post by Addie » Thu Aug 22, 2019 10:08 am

Associated Press
Spill revelation raises questions about North Dakota system

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The North Dakota Health Department’s acknowledgment this week that a 2015 pipeline leak of liquid natural gas is hundreds of thousands of gallons larger than reported raises questions about how many other spills and leaks are underreported — and state officials were not immediately able to answer Wednesday.

State Environmental Quality Chief Dave Glatt said the agency does not update initial public reports on spills but is considering doing so in the future.

“I get it — people want more information,” Glatt said.

The agency said Tuesday that a 2015 pipeline spill of gas liquids, or “condensate,” at a western North Dakota natural gas plant that was first reported as just 10 gallons (8 imperial gallons) is at least hundreds of thousands of gallons larger and may take an additional decade to clean up.

The initial state report on the spill at Oneok Partners LP’s Garden Creek I gas processing plant was never updated, even as Oneok updated the state on cleanup. In October, Oneok told the state it had recovered 240,000 gallons (nearly 200,000 imperial gallons) of the liquid gas and cleanup continued.

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#22

Post by RTH10260 » Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:20 pm

Question.
Does spilled liquid gas not dissipate into the air? Or was the recovered amount what was left over in damaged containments?

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#23

Post by Volkonski » Thu Aug 22, 2019 2:43 pm

RTH10260 wrote:
Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:20 pm
Question.
Does spilled liquid gas not dissipate into the air? Or was the recovered amount what was left over in damaged containments?
Natural gas condensate (not to be confused with liquified natural gas) is a liquid at ambient conditions because it consists mostly of heavier compounds like pentane, butane, pentane, etc. Condensate is removed from raw natural gas before it is put in pipelines or liquified.

In the early 20th century condensate was used as a fuel in internal combustion engines.
Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
― Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#24

Post by RTH10260 » Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:30 pm

Volkonski wrote:
Thu Aug 22, 2019 2:43 pm
RTH10260 wrote:
Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:20 pm
Question.
Does spilled liquid gas not dissipate into the air? Or was the recovered amount what was left over in damaged containments?
Natural gas condensate (not to be confused with liquified natural gas) is a liquid at ambient conditions because it consists mostly of heavier compounds like pentane, butane, pentane, etc. Condensate is removed from raw natural gas before it is put in pipelines or liquified.

In the early 20th century condensate was used as a fuel in internal combustion engines.
Thanks!

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Re: Oil & Gas Drilling

#25

Post by Addie » Sun Aug 25, 2019 10:12 am

Rolling Stone
Strip Mining Could Come to Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

The final draft plan by the Trump administration opens parts of formerly protected lands to oil, gas and mining companies


Under President Donald Trump, the United States has seen the largest reduction of nationally protected lands in the country’s history. One of the victims of the administration is Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, which will soon be open to strip mining and gas extraction, according to a Bureau of Land Management document released on Friday.

This version of the plan is the final draft environmental impact statement that outlines the administration’s plans for the land and potential drawbacks. ...

But environmentalists disagree with the administration’s characterization of the plan, and many have filed lawsuits to stop the reclassification of these lands. “These management plans seek to cement the Trump administration legacy of destroying the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument,” said Steve Bloch, legal director for the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance. “That seems to be the objective certainly for excluded lands, which are going to be in large part available for mineral leasing and extractive development. To make matters worse, the BLM is going to prioritize motorized recreation across a large swath of the original 1.9 million acres.”

The plan identifies up to 700,000 acres that used to be federally protected that will be available to mining as well as oil and gas companies. Since the monument was reduced, 19 companies have already filed to begin work there. The plan also proposes allowing cattle to graze on the land, which the administration acknowledges could also lead to adverse environmental effects.

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