News Round-Up: September 9, 2011


Today’s Essential Reads


Speaking Out on Fracking

An issue that can drastically affect all residents of Santa Barbara County is the hydraulic fracturing — fracking — that began recently near Los Alamos.

Concerns Over “Fracking” in Natural Gas Exploration

A series of legislative hearings has started on the future of natural gas in Michigan. One of the main controversies about capturing natural gas is the practice of hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking.

Don’t Drink The Water

When Halliburton CEO Dave Lesar addressed public concerns regarding hydraulic fracturing by calling in a fellow executive to drink a new fracking fluid with ingredients commonly found in the food industry, a rare PR win for Halliburton quickly became another setback when the king had his right-hand man taste the beverage before he quenched his thirst.

Water Reuse Project Agreement Signed for Marcellus Shale

Wastewater from controversial hydraulic fracturing processes in the Marcellus Shale will soon be treated by an onsite semi-portable water treatment facility.


New Offshore Drilling Rules Hinge on Deepwater Horizon Probe

The government is about to kick-start a long process for setting new offshore drilling safety standards — but only after a joint federal investigation into the Deepwater Horizon disaster is complete, a top Obama administration official told the Houston Chronicle.

Another North Sea Disaster

With some 50 serious injuries a year (up by 20) and over 400 reported dangerous occurrences 85 of which were losses of containment of hydrocarbons into the atmosphere (1) it seems an inappropriate time to reduce regulation. Apart from the recent oil spill on Gannet where Shell accept a causal factor may have been lack of maintenance and inspection, with the HSE stating publicly that lack of maintenance offshore could have severe consequences generally across the oilfield, it seems that better and more proactive oversight of this industry is needed rather than less.

Canada Must Be Ready before Arctic Drilling

Canada should strengthen its capability to handle Arctic oil spills before it allows deepwater drilling in its Arctic waters and it should continue to insist on stringent relief-well requirements, a study released on Friday said.

Big Oil Lobbying Hard To Drill In Alaska, Gulf of Mexico

Exxon Mobil and Chevron are increasing their lobbying efforts to push the U.S. government to grant drilling permits for exploration.


Tokyo Underestimated Radiation After Disasters, New Report Says

The Japanese government initially underestimated radiation releases from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, in part because of untimely rain, and so exposed people unnecessarily, a report released this week by a government research institute says.

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Stuart H. Smith is an attorney based in New Orleans fighting major oil companies and other polluters.
Cooper Law Firm

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