First Choice Energy

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

New Bloomberg Article Does Little to Dispel Notion That They Are Anti-Drilling

From Bloomberg:
Seeking to quell environmental concerns about the chemicals it shoots underground to extract oil and natural gas, Apache Corp. (APA) told shareholders in April that it disclosed information about “all the company’s U.S. hydraulic fracturing jobs” on a website last year.
Actually, Apache’s transparency was shot through with cracks. In Texas and Oklahoma, the company reported chemicals it used on only about half its fracked wells via FracFocus.org, a voluntary website that oil and gas companies helped design amid calls for mandatory disclosure.
Energy companies failed to list more than two out of every five fracked wells in eight U.S. states from April 11, 2011, when FracFocus began operating, through the end of last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The gaps reveal shortcomings in the voluntary approach to transparency on the site, which has received funding from oil and gas trade groups and $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy.
“FracFocus is just a fig leaf for the industry to be able to say they’re doing something in terms of disclosure,” said U.S. Representative Diana DeGette, a Colorado Democrat. DeGette, along with Pennsylvania Senator Robert Casey, introduced legislation in March 2011 that would require companies to disclose fracking chemicals. The bills haven’t advanced in either the House or Senate.
With FracFocus, “companies that want to disclose can do it but the other ones don’t have to,” DeGette said.
Read the rest of this article by clicking here.

No doubt there are still some valid concerns about fracking disclosures, but it would be hard to argue that there isn't a clear anti-drilling bias in this article.  Especially in view of inaccurate paragraphs like this one:
Homeowners in Pennsylvania, Texas and Wyoming have complained that their well water was contaminated with chemicals or methane gas from nearby frack jobs. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last year linked the method to contaminated drinking water in Pavillion, Wyoming; the agency is now retesting some of those findings. The EPA has little authority to regulate fracking; Congress in 2005 stripped it of most such power.
The EPA was never stripped of power to regulate fracking, because it never was granted such power.  Because of repeated efforts by the agency to try and claim regulatory power over fracking, Congress did take action in 2005 to make it harder for the EPA to try and seize authority that it had no right to (or, as Marcellus Drilling News said it: "Congress had to erect a legal fence").

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