Monday, April 27, 2009

You can't drink natural gas!

Here is another great article on water and natural gas drilling. Most of us in high-density neighborhoods do not have our own water wells but this does affect aquifers too. With gas drilling all over North Texas it could threaten our drinking water supply someday.

Gas companies want to argue that contamination is a natural occurrence but everyone knows better.

It challenges the view that natural gas, and the suite of hydrocarbons that exist around it, is isolated from water supplies by its extreme depth," said Judith Jordan, the oil and gas liaison for Garfield County who has worked as a hydrogeologist with DuPont and as a lawyer with Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection. "It is highly unlikely that methane would have migrated through natural faults and fractures and coincidentally arrived in domestic wells at the same time oil and gas development started, after having been down there ...for over 65 million years."

Is it worth the money? Even those with large pieces of property are wondering the same thing. Pay extra attention to the word "few". (Webster's definition of few: not many persons or things)

The wealth has begun trickling down to the residents of Dimock. A few will earn more than a half-million dollars this year, and bimonthly checks for $6,000 are not uncommon. Cabot and its contractors also support the local economy by hiring local labor and patronizing hotels and restaurants in nearby towns.

But the water contamination is forcing the people who live there to accept a difficult compromise.

"You have to evaluate which is more important, the money or the water," said a Dimock resident who declined to be named because he doesn't want to antagonize Cabot, which he says will pay him more than $600,000 this year for the wells on his property. "The economy is so tough. Suppose you could stop drilling -- no one wants Cabot to go away."

As for the rest of us with our little lots in our high density neighborhoods, hopefully we never have to relate to those below.

For some, though, the benefits can be easily erased.
Norma Fiorentino, whose well exploded on New Year's morning, got just $97 in royalties in February. Now a part of her monthly $646 Social Security check goes to buy water. "You can't buy a good well," she said.
Down the road, Pat Farnelli spends more than $100 of her monthly food stamp allotment to buy plastic jugs of drinking water. Next door, Ronald Carter paid $7,000 to install two water treatment systems for his family, then learned they won't remove the gas.


Anonymous said...

It was late in the evening and I was just lighting my gas grill with my butane lighter and just couldn’t get your latest fear inciting article off my mind, so I thought I’d give you my thoughts.
I have to agree with the people in the article that the gas well company that allowed gas to flow into their water table was at fault. Obviously they knew before fracturing that they had a serious problem and didn’t act accordingly. For that, they should be punished and harshly.
My problem with your posting, however, is that you are damning the whole industry and specifically pointing out drillers in Flower Mound for something that happened in relatively shallow wells with a driller that obviously knew they were negligent.
I notice that every time these type of articles appear, they are never from the Barnett Shale (Penn. or coal seams in Colo/Wy.), or they’re early century technology. Flower Mound has the tightest strictest drilling regulations in the state and from what I’ve researched about Titan, they have the latest in technology rigs available. I just don’t see them making an error like the one you link us to.
(Heck, that one guy is making $600,000 a year from that driller. That’s a lot more than most of us make, and he’s complaining! MOVE SUCKER, you can afford it!!!)
Now let’s talk about the water issue. Guess what? It takes 1,120 liters of water to produce a single liter of your Starbucks coffee, once growing the beans, packaging and so on are measured. It takes 4 liters of water to produce 1 liter of bottled water. It takes about 16,000 liters of water to make 1kg of each of the following: shoes, hamburgers, and the microchips you use to write this blog, and we haven’t even talked about what is used to make perfume or industrial runoff into our rivers.
Yet we love companies like Starbucks and their volunteer work in Africa, or Tom’s shoes who donate a pair for each one sold. But you’ll never mention that the local gas companies are providing huge amounts of revenue for the local businesses, or the thousands of jobs they provide, or even that Cherokee Horn is giving out 3 scholarships to your precious children you like to fear monger about. The Barnett is one of the reasons your little lot is holding its value better than most of the country right now.
Used to be, Flower Mound had more horses than people per capita, but now we have more SUV’s than people per capita and I’d accuse you of driving one, but you sound like the manufacturing industry just doesn’t belong close to you and so you probably drive a German or Japanese car – industries that we tried to bomb into submission 60 years ago. Industries make mistakes, but people don’t clamor for their downfall like you do. American Airlines may fail to find a crack in an engine or the auto industry may have to make a safety recall, yet nobody is asking for their head – yet.
So please climb in your Ford Pinto, go to Starbucks, make sure you have an Ozarka and hit a tree. You may need to burn it for warmth once this new bubble burst we’re financing, and remember the Devil wears Prada.

Anonymous said...

I think my first issue is your how sarcastic you have to be. This is an anti urban drilling blog. A place to share information from others who have experienced urban drilling first hand. Second the scholarships are just a sign of desparation on Cherokee Horn's part. Many people are not buying into the gas drilling in urban areas and with the House Bills that the Oil and Gas drillers are trying to pass, our ordinance will not protect us anymore. When those pass, there will be fear mongering.

This is about clean drinking water. Something we need to sustain life. Water contamination is happening right here in the Metroplex. Check out some of the gas drilling water issues up in Parker County and Tarrant County.

Why is it when someone cares about the air we breath and the water we drink pro drillers have to accuse people of tree huggers. "pinto, bottle Ozark etc"? I am a conservative Republican but that doesn't mean I can't try to preserve our natural resources that we need to live.

If gas drilling was so good for the air and water, why did they need exemptions from the Clean Air and Water Acts?
If you are doing the right thing, with the right technology, then you wouldn't need exemtions. Period.
The problem is no one in the gas and oil industry want to address this issue. They continue to find what they think is a valid reason. Shallow wells, that company was doing it incorrectly blah blah.
Go ahead and be in denial but someday clean water will be worth more than natural gas and those that still have it will be millionaires. The those that don't will be dead.

Anonymous said...

can someone tell me what the City Council is considering during Monday's meeting. Are they caving in and going with the states recommendation to allow drilling?

Anonymous said...

The Town has drafted a letter to be sent to Austin. I believe that letter will be read at the Council Meeting Monday night. If you want more info and want to track the bills, go to the Texas State Legislature website and do a bill look up. Make sure you put HB in front a the numbers.
HB2110, 4144, 4441, and 4654.

Anonymous said...

Election day is tommorrow (May 9th) and I was wondering who everyone is voting for? Last year was easier than this year.

tammi said...

I am supporting Lyda, Hayden, and Butler. I think it will add a nice balance to the council. They fully support Smartgrowth and the O & G Ordinance. Also, they are not tight with developers. Just look at sign placement and you can tell who the developers are promoting and supporting.