Sunday, 31 August 2014

France - Advance warning - lecture: G d S and geology ( Périgord)

We have received advance notice of a lecture ( in French ) to be given in the village of Bouzac
( Périgord ) entitled 'Gaz de Schiste et géologie du Quercy et Périgord Noir' on Friday 17th October 2014 @ 20h 30 by Jean-Paul Liégeois - Geologist at the Musée Royal de l'Afrique Centrale à Tervuren et Professeur à l' Universiteé Libre de Bruxelles.

Essentially, the talk will highlight the many protential problems associated aith fracking in a limestone are such as this. Full details at www.bouzic-périgord.fr.

If you speak French or can be accompanied by a friend who does, this event promises to provide invaluable background information of immediate relevance to those living in this part of France.


Monday, 25 August 2014

UK - Labour Party seeks to amend Lords fracking bill.

Here we go......................

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/aug/25/labour-regulation-uk-fracking-industry

So, not actually against it then. If elected they might find this to be a suitable subject for one of their first 'U' turns as the evidence appears all around them. Ed.

San Francisco - 6.0 Richter Scale Earthquake

Read more here..................
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/24/california-earthquake-northern-san-francisco-bay-area

Now, one would think that fracking in such a sensitive zone might be generally agreed to be a very bad idea. Oh no. Our friends in the Dirty Industry seem all set to continue.....................
http://sanfranciscobay.sierraclub.org/environment/fracking/

Friday, 22 August 2014

France - 11th October - International Day Against Fracking

Advance warning is given by the Collective Nonauxgazdeschiste of a manifestation contre Gaz de Schiste on Saturday 11th October at a location to be announced nearer the time in the Gers Dept.

Information/renseignements from : nonauxgazdeschiste47@gmail.com


UK - Fracking - the bubble waiting to burst.

The shale boom is a bubble waiting to burst as economics of extraction falter and the trickle of bad environmental news starts to swell

Jeremy Leggett Monday 18 August 2014
theguardian.com
http://www.theguardian.com/business/economics-blog/2014/aug/18/uk-energy-dependence-

THE FIVE HIDDEN COSTS OF FRACKING

The vision of an energy-independent Britain, free of the clear and growing problems of overseas fuel dependency, is deeply alluring. That is one of the reasons I set up a solar energy company 15 years ago. Today, Putin's Russia, Islamic State's Iraq, and a host of other actual and potential fossil-fuel addiction downsides mean we would be well advised to strive hard for that vision. What is becoming clearer with each passing month, however, is that the route to delivering energy independence is not the fracking of domestic gas and oil from shale. Indeed, it could be a route to derailing the vision.
Five sets of problems are emerging with the shale narrative: economic risk; local environmental cost; global environmental cost; social cost, and opportunity cost.

First, the economic risk. The US "shale boom" looks increasingly as though it will turn into one of those bubbles that we humans seem so good at inflating and then bursting. The oil-and-gas industry has been losing cash by the tens of billions, because high drilling costs mean most companies are spending more than they are earning from low-price fracked gas, even when high-price fracked oil is added to the equation. Wider US industry may have benefited from cheap gas in the short term, but production from all shale gas regions – save the Marcellus of Pennsylvania – has peaked already, and many of us reading the detail now see little prospect of the gas industry delivering growing production for many years more. Rather, the reverse.

Second, the local environmental cost. Once Dick Cheney freed fracking from scrutiny under America's Safe Drinking Water Act (the so-called "Halliburton Loophole"), back in the kick-off days for shale in the Bush years, bad news about contamination and health impacts should have been predictable. It has been slow to emerge, in part because of widespread use of gagging orders by the industry as part of compensation payments for wrecked farms and impaired health. But now a regular drip of bad news has started, soon likely to snowball as ever more people realise the reality behind the industry's mantras about all being well.

Third, the global environmental cost. Gas industry operations can and do leak methane, a potent greenhouse gas, from wellhead to hob. The question is, how much? Early research on fracking-related emissions by the rare university teams not cowed by oil-industry funding are worrying. Fracked gas may well prove to be worse than coal in greenhouse terms, over the full-life-cycle. And British shale basins are far more faulted than US shale basins.

Fourth, the social cost. It is likely that few British people as yet fully appreciate the tight well spacings, industrial infrastructure, water profligacy, toxic waste-disposal challenges, and lorry movements that are required for a typical US shale "sweet spot", and what the social cost of that would be if superimposed on rural Britain. Yet already local opposition is severe, even against single vertical unfracked test wells, which entail little waste, and few lorry movements. Planning for the first such was rejected by a council for the first time recently, in Sussex, with objectors "weeping with relief" in the chamber on hearing the decision.
Many such objectors are Conservative voters. The prime minister says he wants to deliver sufficient shale gas to drive down the gas price so far that large-scale manufacturing returns to the UK. He has little or no chance of getting that past his own voter base without committing political suicide, even if much of that gas proves extractable by fracking – which the British Geological Survey clearly has doubts about.

Fifth, the opportunity cost. There is a shovel-ready alternative to gas that can be developed surprisingly quickly, given the collective will: renewable energy and energy efficiency. Among this broad family is a star duo that the energy incumbency increasingly fears as an existential threat: solar and storage. Solar is a power source that is infinite and easy to tap, as opposed to finite and increasingly difficult to tap. Politically, the government's own opinion polls show that solar is outstandingly the most popular energy technology with the British public, year after year, miles ahead of fracking, even now, so early in the game. In the most recent poll, for DECC itself, support for fracking was down at just 24%.
The opportunity cost is that many leaders in the oil and gas industry, and their supporters in government, want actively to suppress this fast-growing global industry, with its fast-falling cost base – along with all the other clean-energy industries – so as to not put investors in gas off.
The fact that the oil-and-gas incumbency views solar as such a threat to their business models should tell us everything we need to know.

Jeremy Leggett is the founding chairman of Solarcentury, the UK's largest solar solutions company, and charity SolarAid. Before that, as an academic and oil industry consultant in the 1980s, he took research funding from Shell, BP, and other companies, for work on such areas as shale energy. He is author of The Carbon War and Half Gone.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Monday, 18 August 2014

Sunday, 17 August 2014

World - Scientific evidence against fracking mounts and mounts.............

The Oil and Gas ( or Dirty Industry as we prefer to call it ) used to be quite adept at trivialising the debate surrounding the entire questioin of hydraulic fracturation pushing notions of 'trivial' or 'insignificanct' earthquakes or suggesting that tap water had always been flammable in certain parts or citing shale gas as a 'clean' or 'transitional' source.  However, the evidence base/bank is now brim full with horror stories of cancers caused, explosions, displacement of populations, tumbling property values and more recently the publication of previously undisclosed toxic chemicals.

Here you may read about the mounting evidence: http://grist.org/climate-energy/why-the-scientific-case-against-fracking-keeps-getting-stronger/

Then ponder for just one moment what our politicians may have to gain personally ( bungs, rising share prices and a promise of future board membership of their favourite O&G concern ) and ask yourself just who you believe. Ed.

UK - 'Trouble at mill'. Residents not at all happy.

New demonstrations in Lancashire ( UK ): https://twitter.com/search?q=%23FrackFreeLancashire

We wonder what this will cost the public purse? Good - whatever it takes. Ed.

Friday, 15 August 2014

5,000 holes in Black(pool) Lancashire? Not if it can be stopped...............

Misquoted John Lennon there but it now seems that Lancashire is going to be the second significant protest location after Balcombe. Balcombe cost over £3.5 million to police and we wonder how local police chiefs and police committees will feel about the prospect here and the more so in the face of spending cuts. never mind, anything 'we' can do to support our 'chums' in the Dirty Industry........

Read more here:http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/aug/14/protest-cuadrilla-fracking-blackpool

N.Carolina Governor decides to ignore all the evidence.

North Carolina's Governor is pushing to frack the State in spite of massive evidence/data showing the fracking process to be unsafe - at best.

Read more here: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-28792721

UK - Scots Minister unhappy about Westminster riding rough shod over people's property rights.

Quite right too: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-28792721

Westminster arrogance from the biggest bunch of mediocrity in the history of democratic government.

Monday, 11 August 2014

France - GASLAND - Check it out if only for revision purposes

If you missed a local screening of Josh Fox's award-winning GASLANDS documentary when it first did the rounds of towns and villages here in France you now have a second chance to watch it on French TV channel ARTE.

Click the link for details ( film will have English dialogue with French sub-titles ) ...................

Here: http://www.arte.tv/guide/fr/048120-000/gasland

Scary the first time around, but now that the pressure is on and so much apalling (validated ) data has emerged from the US and elsewhere it seems so much more relevant and timely. Must see.

France - Institute Montaigne urges exploitation en France....

A recent report by the respected Institute Montaigne has urged that France should move to at least explore the potential for shale gas under it's soil. Not surpisingly industry lobbyists and here notably the Director general of Chemicals ( they don't use those do they? ) Group Solvay are right behind the proposal.

Read more ( in French ) here:http://www.lemaghrebdz.com/?page=detail_actualite&rubrique=Energie&id=65310

UK - Government censors results of house price survey in fracking areas.

They wouldn't do that - would they? Oh yes they have............................

From The Guardian

Environment Shale gas and fracking Fracking campaigners criticise 'censored' report on house prices Government urged to publish sections cut from study into impact of shale gas wells on local communities 

By Rowena Mason, political correspondent The Guardian, Sunday 10 August 2014 15.45 BST  

Caroline Lucas MP criticised cuts in the government's published draft report exploring the impact that drilling for shale gas may have on UK house prices. 

The government has been criticised for censoring a report into the impact of shale gas drilling that examines the effect on house prices and pressure on local services. Campaigners are calling for full publication of the study carried out by Whitehall officials, as the government continues to resist the idea of offering compensation to individual householders near proposed fracking sites. The report, called Shale Gas: Rural Economy Impacts, was written in March and a draft was released under environmental information laws with large portions of the text removed. In particular, the section looking at the effect of drilling on house prices has three missing chunks.

Monday, 4 August 2014

Germany - STOP Exxon fracking in the face of public opposition.


Exxon wants to frack Germany.


NB. What happens in the UK and our close neighbour Germany could have a not insignificant effect on public opinion here in France. It is vital that these initiatives be opposed. Ed.

France - Non-flammable propane stimulation.

Latest whiz-bang idea from those who would have us continue to extract fossil fuels at this crucial point in our history...... (in French. Copy and paste into Google Translator if required ) :-

http://www.actu-environnement.com/ae/news/gaz-schiste-alternative-fracturation-hydraulique-propane-heptafluoropropane-22373.php4