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The Facts Behind the Frack - Scientists weigh in on the hydraulic fracturing debate
Science News ^ | September 8th, 2012 | Rachel Ehrenberg

Posted on 08/30/2012 12:46:46 AM PDT by neverdem

To call it a fractious debate is an understatement.

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, wrenches open rock deep beneath the Earth's surface, freeing the natural gas that's trapped inside. Proponents argue that fracking-related gas recovery is a game changer, a bridge to the renewable energy landscape of the future. The gas, primarily methane, is cheap and relatively clean. Because America is brimful of the stuff, harvesting the fuel via fracking could provide the country jobs and reduce its dependence on foreign sources of energy.

But along with these promises have come alarming local incidents and national reports of blowouts, contamination and earthquakes. Fracking opponents contend that the process poisons air and drinking water and may make people sick. What's more, they argue, fracking leaks methane, a potent greenhouse gas that can blow up homes, worries highlighted in the controversial 2010 documentary Gasland.

Fears that fracking companies are operating in a Wild West environment with little regulation have prompted political action. In June, the group Don't Frack Ohio led thousands of protesters on a march to the statehouse, where they declared their commitment to halting hydraulic fracturing in the state. Legislation banning the process has been considered but is now on hold in California. New York — which sits atop a giant natural gas reserve — has a statewide fracking moratorium; pending policies would allow the process only where local officials support it.

Despite all this activity, not much of the fracking debate has brought scientific evidence into the fold. Yet scientists have been studying the risks posed by fracking operations. Research suggests methane leaks do happen. The millions of gallons of chemical-laden water used to fracture shale deep in the ground has spoiled land and waterways. There's also evidence linking natural gas recovery to earthquakes, but this problem seems to stem...

(Excerpt) Read more at sciencenews.org ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Extended News; Politics/Elections; Technical; US: New York; US: Pennsylvania
KEYWORDS: energy; fracking; naturalgas; shalegas
The right sidebar at the Science News' essay has suggested reading, citations and references.
1 posted on 08/30/2012 12:46:53 AM PDT by neverdem
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To: neverdem
and reduce its dependence on foreign sources of energy.

That's putting it extremely mildly. America is set to become a major oil and LNG exporter within the next ten years.

2 posted on 08/30/2012 12:56:14 AM PDT by agere_contra (Vote ABO. Don't choose the Greater Evil and then boast about how principled you are)
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To: neverdem

My family owns property in Kings County, California, that sits atop the Monterey Shale. There exists a strata of chert, very hard crystalized quartz, that is nearly impenetrable by drills. It can be fractured to release oil and gas. Where our property is located primarily has natural gas.

The oil under the Monterey Shale is thick, viscous, and with little pressure under it. It’s hard to extract though the estimate is that there is one-trillion barrels of petroleum in that formation.


3 posted on 08/30/2012 1:19:19 AM PDT by SatinDoll (NATURAL BORN CITZEN: BORN IN THE USA OF CITIZEN PARENTS.)
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To: neverdem
"What's more, they argue, fracking leaks methane, a potent greenhouse gas that can blow up homes, worries highlighted in the controversial 2010 documentary Gasland."

What?
No RADON deaths to use?

I wonder why

4 posted on 08/30/2012 2:28:00 AM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: knarf

Then there’s this as well...
http://www.gizmag.com/dry-extraction-fracking/23513/

Perhaps this has the the potential to become the standard for fracking?


5 posted on 08/30/2012 4:12:04 AM PDT by CTyank
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To: agere_contra
That's putting it extremely mildly. America is set to become a major oil and LNG exporter within the next ten years.

Before we export it, lets burn it in our cars...

The Eco-Greenies / EPA have shot themselves in the foot.

* They demanded lower emissions, the auto manufacturers eventually went with Direct Injection
* Their are LPG Direct Injectors.
* If you run LPG as a liquid all the way to the Injector, it can be really beneficial.
* You see you get a change of state from liquid to gas in the cylinder when injected, and it reduces the combustion chamber Temperature.
That allows you can increase the Turbocharger Boost or increase the compression ratio even more for smaller more powerful engines.
* not to mention as a fuel it has an octane up the wazzoo...
* It becomes a win-win-win in so many ways.

The image below is a Vialle LPG-DI schematic of a conversion system that is available now for Volkswagon Golf's with the FSI engine which is DI. Their are other converters as well in Europe, the point is, LPG-DI is here....

It would be fun to tell the Saudi's to stuff it with our own fuel and a system such as this that I am sure American Ingenuity can make even better...

6 posted on 08/30/2012 4:30:25 AM PDT by taildragger (( Palin / Mulally 2012 ))
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To: neverdem

Oh great, here come the “scientists” who are 100% funded by grants, 100% run by pointy headed leftist entrenched deep in the Federal beauacracy. I am sure they will all transfer from the discredited global warming scam, to the “dangers of fracking” scam.


7 posted on 08/30/2012 5:05:53 AM PDT by BRK
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To: agere_contra
America is set to become a major oil and LNG exporter within the next ten years.

LNG, yes.

Oil exporter in ten years? Absolutely no way possible at all.

We still import more crude oil than we produce ourselves. That is why OPEC nations sell us as much oil as we produce in Texas, North Dakota, Alaska, California, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Colorado combined.

US Crude Oil Production by State:
http://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/pet_crd_crpdn_adc_mbblpd_m.htm

U.S. Crude Oil Imports by Country of Origin
http://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/pet_move_impcus_a2_nus_epc0_im0_mbblpd_m.htm

8 posted on 08/30/2012 5:13:30 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: taildragger

LPG is not LNG.

Propane is not methane of Natural Gas. It is a Natural Gas liquid. But the Propane supply has not grown near as much Methane Supply, some, but not all, of the new shale gas fields are fairly dry with little liquid content.

That is why we have not seen the price of propane fall like the natural gas price has fallen in the past 4 years.


9 posted on 08/30/2012 5:17:09 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: neverdem

The article intentionally confuses methane with natural gas.

Methane is a component of natural gas.

Natural gas is not methane.

They key to most of the water well contaminations has been that the methane found does not resemble the natural gas coming from the fractured well. In other words, a different source.

But it is these types of confusions that keep people thinking fracturing causes your water to become flammable.

The benefit of gas drilling is that today, more and more water wells are being tested prior to drilling, revealing the hazards that existed without fracturing.


10 posted on 08/30/2012 5:29:45 AM PDT by Erik Latranyi (When religions have to beg the gov't for a waiver, we are already under socialism.)
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To: BRK
Yep. I said, "This is science? Reads more like an opinion column."

What none of these pundits (won't call them scientists) mention is that fracking has been going on since the 40s and is just recently a cause du jour.

11 posted on 08/30/2012 5:54:06 AM PDT by wbill
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To: neverdem

I suggest the website “www.nogreenslime.com”. It has a link to a site with the details if you want to dig deeper (pun intended). This is NOT my site or a blog that I am pimping.


12 posted on 08/30/2012 5:55:34 AM PDT by jdsteel (Give me freedom, not more government.)
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To: neverdem

The economics of this is amazing. I am directly involved with safety issues in the production of these shale sites.
Shell amazes me of not only their safety standards but also their true concern for the enviroment. In Pennsylvania the money to the local ecomonies is HUGE. Farmers who were going broke but had land with shale formations are getting rich. If they drill on their land they get even richer.
New York allows no drilling for this. Funny thing is it wouldn’t help their farmers in the least as unlike Pennyslvania (where land owners generally hold mineral rights) NY the state itself hold something like 90% of the mineral rights.
Whenever something is good for the economy there are people who hate it. The supply of natural gas is so high right now it has created a shortage of storage. The supply is also reflected in the low cost of natural gas.
We need to convert our cars, trucks etc. to natural gas.
We can overnight be independant of OIL ..at least for ground transportation.


13 posted on 08/30/2012 6:22:35 AM PDT by IC Ken
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To: IC Ken

“NY the state itself hold something like 90% of the mineral rights.” WHAT? This isn’t correct.


14 posted on 08/30/2012 6:44:42 AM PDT by faucetman ( Just the facts, ma'am, Just the facts)
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To: neverdem

The article details all the POSSIBLE problems with fracking.

Fracking has been going on for a long time. There is real world data out there. You’d think with all the POSSIBLE problems the article could detail a lot of ACTUAL and PROVEN disasters or maybe just a few major incidents.


15 posted on 08/30/2012 6:58:01 AM PDT by wildbill (You're just jealous because the Voices talk oMnly to me.)
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To: neverdem

Well, if you have had any doubts about fracking , this article just muddys the waters fuirther.

Its a “ Frack You one and all!” responce to supporters of fracking.

I would support fracking, as long as the state governments and the industry set up a land /water damage insurance fund, accessable by insurance adjusters. But they will not establish such a fund, which is bothersome, giving false weightto many of the greenie concerns.


16 posted on 08/30/2012 9:48:35 AM PDT by Candor7 (Obama fascism article: http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/05/barack_obama_the_quintessentia_1.html)
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To: Born Conservative; airborne; smoothsailing; Dr. Scarpetta; martin_fierro; Coop; Tribune7; ...

It’s not perfect, but it’s an otherwise decent review of fracking, IMHO.


17 posted on 08/30/2012 10:19:02 AM PDT by neverdem (Xin loi minh oi)
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To: neverdem

Good news from Harrison County, OH:

Gulfport Energy Corp drilled a gusher that is putting out the equivalent of 4,650 barrels per day, the biggest output from one well in the company’s history.

http://businessjournaldaily.com/drilling-down/gulfport-well-outperforms-chesapeakes-buell-well-2012-8-29


18 posted on 08/30/2012 10:26:11 AM PDT by Rebelbase (The most transparent administration ever is clear as mud.)
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To: thackney
Thank God for TX!

My friend who grew up in Lima, Peru, tells me they've been converting their cars quickly to nat gas (NGV or CNG) and everyone's happy as can be. They're self sufficient, don't have to import nat gas.

19 posted on 08/30/2012 4:31:02 PM PDT by uncommonsense (Conservatives believe what they see; Liberals see what they believe.)
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To: Candor7

I am not sure who I distrust the most... insurance companies or the government. If indeed they are truly separate entities anymore.


20 posted on 08/31/2012 2:40:39 AM PDT by momincombatboots (Back to West by G-d Virginia. 2016 starts today! Walker, Issa, Rubio,)
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To: Erik Latranyi
Natural gas is not methane.

Pipeline quality Natural Gas, the type delivered to customers, is almost pure methane.

Natural gas, as it is used by consumers, is much different from the natural gas that is brought from underground up to the wellhead. Although the processing of natural gas is in many respects less complicated than the processing and refining of crude oil, it is equally as necessary before its use by end users.

The natural gas used by consumers is composed almost entirely of methane. However, natural gas found at the wellhead, although still composed primarily of methane, is by no means as pure.

http://www.naturalgas.org/naturalgas/processing_ng.asp

21 posted on 08/31/2012 4:58:23 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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