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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

IPCC Credits Fracking For Reducing U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions

From Energy in Depth:
Just days after the Sierra Club released a report rehashing its thoroughly debunked argument that natural gas development is “releasing billions of tons of new climate-disrupting carbon pollution into the air,” the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has released its latest assessment, which should finally put this claim to rest.  As the IPCC makes clear, it’s largely because of hydraulic fracturing and natural gas that the United States has been able to reduce its GHG emissions dramatically:
“A key development since AR4 is the rapid deployment of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling technologies, which has increased and diversified the gas supply… this is an important reason for a reduction of GHG emissions in the United States.” (Ch. 7,p. 18)
Before we go any further, let’s take a moment to remember what Sierra Club Director Michael Brune said about the IPCC when it released its latest, fifth assessment report  (AR5).  He said:
“First, the scientific work reported by the IPCC in the AR5 is the gold standard for getting a big-picture understanding of what’s happening to the climate.” (emphasis added)
Bill McKibben, the head of another activist group, 350.org, has also been calling the IPCC the “gold standard” for years.  Frances Beinecke of the anti-fracking NRDC put it this way: “The IPCC is the most authoritative group in the business.”
What’s also interesting is how these groups have long leveraged the IPCC’s findings to support a ban on fracking.  Take, for instance, a letter from Americans Against Fracking to Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz, which quotes the IPCC heavily.  From the letter:
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