Category Archives: Research

I’ve long predicted that California will be the place where the rubber hits the road for the fracking boom in America. The rewards in a resource-rich state are too great for Big Oil and Gas to ignore, but the risks — of wasting millions upon millions of gallons of water in a drought-stricken state, of causing earthquakes in a region criss-crossed by fault lines, of polluting the already smoggy air [...]

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Posted in Causes, Fracking, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Politics, Regulation, Research, Safety, Testing Tagged , , , , , , ,

There has been a wave of scientific research lately on fracking and its environmental risks. Some of that work has emerged from the governmental agencies that regulate unconventional drilling for oil and gas, including the recent, highly publicized report by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on the effects of fracking on drinking-water safety. The problem, of course, with government regulatory agencies is that they’re prone to political pressure — from [...]

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Posted in Fracking, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Politics, Regulation, Research, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

Everybody needs to vent sometimes, right? That’s certainly true for someone like me, a veteran environmental attorney who’s had more than my share of frustrations in dealing with Big Oil, their high-priced lawyers, and the politicians who receive huge wads of campaign cash. It helps to have a blog to get things off my chest. But I’ll tell you one thing that doesn’t need to vent! Fracking rigs. There’s yet [...]

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Posted in Causes, Fracking, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Research, Safety Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

My recent book — Crude Justice: How I Fought Big Oil and Won, and What You Should Know About the New Environmental Attack on America — is mostly a chronicle of what I’ve learned during a quarter century of taking on the oil giants and their environmental abuse of communities and workers across the American South. In the end, I note that — while it’s been a fulfilling career for [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Fracking, Human Interest, Important Articles, Main, Research Tagged , , , , , , , ,

One of the biggest questions that’s hovered out there since the fracking boom first entered the public’s consciousness about five years ago is this: Is unconventional oil-and-gas drilling safe for the water supply. The industry’s position is that fracking can’t affect people’s drinking water because the extraction process takes place too far below that groundwater level to have an impact. But that’s been contradicted by scores of complaints from actual [...]

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Posted in Fracking, Illnesses, Important Articles, Main, Regulation, Research, Safety Tagged , , , ,

The relentless spin doctors at BP headquarters apparently don’t agree with me, but I think it’s time to close the book on the supposed debate over whether the massive 2010 BP oil spill was lethal to large numbers of dolphins. The evidence — first merely anecdotal, later more scientific — that dolphins in the Gulf of Mexico were getting sick and dying prematurely because of exposure to crude oil started [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Illnesses, Important Articles, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Research, Wildlife Tagged , , , , ,

It seemed like we’d run out of new environmental and public health problems caused by the fracking boom. Since folks started paying attention to the surge in unconventional gas drilling across the United States, we’ve seen neighbors lighting their tap water on fire with a match, tainted well water, leaks and spills into once-pristine streams, foul-smelling air pollution, increasing emissions of methane (a critical greenhouse gas), dumping of radioactive wastewater [...]

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Posted in Causes, Fracking, Important Articles, Main, Radiation, Research, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

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Posted in BP Spill, Human Interest, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Research, Response, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

Thank God for the National Wildlife Federation. Few non-governmental agencies have worked as hard at staying on the case of the 2010 BP oil spill, and documenting that severe harm that has been done to the various creatures of the Gulf of Mexico. With the 5th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon accident less than a month away, the researchers at the NWF continue to perform yeoman’s work in counteracting the [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Human Interest, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Recovery, Research, Wildlife Tagged , , , , , , , ,

BP just keeps stepping in it — this time I mean almost literally. The British oil giant is desperately trying to get out front of the 5th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon tragedy with a series of exculpatory moves, includes a website that tries weakly to contradict the damning flood of scientific research about the ongoing environmental problems in the Gulf of Mexico. This week, BP took that a step [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Recovery, Research, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , , , , , ,