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On Why We Need a Fracking Moratorium on Public Lands

Thanks for commenting, Ed Dodge. The post states that NRDC has been working hard to strengthen the BLM rules but, since the rules are too weak, we are left with no choice but to urge the administration to put a fracking moratorium--not a ban--in place on all public lands. We can reduce a lot of our fossil fuel use through maximizing energy efficiency. While we have saved a lot of energy in recent years, much more can be done. We need to maximize efficiency and renewables to make sure we are heading in the direction of a clean energy future.

November 18, 2013    View Comment    

On Why We Need a Fracking Moratorium on Public Lands

Thanks for commenting, Ed Dodge. The post states that NRDC has been working hard to strengthen the BLM rules but, since the rules are too weak, we are left with no choice but to urge the administration to put a fracking moratorium--not a ban--in place on all public lands. We can reduce a lot of our fossil fuel use through maximizing energy efficiency. While we have saved a lot of energy in recent years, much more can be done. We need to maximize efficiency and renewables to make sure we are heading in the direction of a clean energy future.

November 18, 2013    View Comment    

On Why We Need a Fracking Moratorium on Public Lands

Dear Bobbi O: Thank you for your comment. NRDC has been working tirelessly to reduce the risks of fracking. We have submitted very detailed technical comments to the agency to document why the agency needs to strengthen its rules and how best to do that by requiring practices that are available to industry. Unfortunately, we have seen four drafts from the agency and each one has gotten weaker, ignoring our efforts. We will continue to work to reduce the risks as much as possible.

November 17, 2013    View Comment    

On Colorado: Put Clean Air and Health Before Oil and Gas Profits [INFOGRAPHIC]

Dear Mr. Miller: Thanks for the comment.

APCD is the Colorado Air Pollution Control Division, part of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

As of July 31, 2013, nine counties in Colorado were in ozone non-attainment status according to the U.S. EPA. They are all north of Colorado Springs in the Denver metro area and north to Weld and Larimer counties. Also according to EPA, ozone precursors can travel large distances and therefore create regional pollution problems, not only local ones. Here is the non-attainment information:

http://www.epa.gov/oaqps001/greenbk/ancl.html

 

August 30, 2013    View Comment    

On Flaring is Hell For Those Living in an Oil and Gas Patch

Dear Rick: Thank you for the comment. I was so sad to read about the deaths of the firefighters in Arizona who selflessly devoted their lives to protect others. In the past, my work focused on forestry policy. Several years ago I co-authored a report ago about the need to shift the focus of our wildfire policies to increase community and wildfire safety: http://www.nrdc.org/land/forests/safe/safe.pdf. While some things have changed, the overall principles and recommendations are still valid, and the concerns about wildfire risks are only growing with increasing drought and a warming planet.

July 2, 2013    View Comment    

On Flaring is Hell For Those Living in an Oil and Gas Patch

Dear IK: Thank you for your comment. There are other "easy problems to fix" in the oil and gas patch but without strong regulations and equally strong enforcement, these fixes will not be required and the public will not be protected.

July 1, 2013    View Comment    

On The BLM Makes the Case for Banning Waste Pits, but Doesn't Ban Them

Dear Paul O: These are excellent questions. The contaminants in oil and gas wastes include carcinogens, radioactive materials, heavy metals, and more. There are substantial risks associated with pits to air, groundwater, surface waters, soil, wildlife, and human health. NRDC provided details about the contaminants and the risks in a petition to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The petition can be found here: http://docs.nrdc.org/energy/files/ene_10091301a.pdf

These wastes can be very toxic and cause dangerous air and water pollution. Whether the problems will resolve over time will depend on the extent and type of contamination. Groundwater pollution in particular  can remain harmful for centuries. Soil contamination can also be very long lasting.

December 31, 2012    View Comment    

On The BLM Makes the Case for Banning Waste Pits, but Doesn't Ban Them

Concerned Scientist:

Here is NRDC's latest statement on the role of natural gas in America's energy mix: http://www.nrdc.org/energy/files/energymixII.pdf

We work on a wide range of issues and our priority issue areas can be seen here: http://www.nrdc.org/issues/

 

 

December 28, 2012    View Comment    

On The BLM Makes the Case for Banning Waste Pits, but Doesn't Ban Them

Dear Concerned Scientist: All of the polluting industries you mention present very serious threats to human and animal health and the planet and need to be addressed. Let me know if you would like information on our work on harmful activities other than fracking. We don't rank them. While burning natural gas at power plants can be an improvement when compared to burning coal, that doesn't mean that natural gas producers shouldn't be required to clean up their act. They have the technology and economic ability to capture toxic air emissions, store waste in tanks instead of pits that leak and spill, install safer casing, stay away from schools, and more. Why should they get a free pass?

December 28, 2012    View Comment    

On More Fracking Tragedies for Farmers and Ranchers in North Dakota

Dear Concerned Scientist: You ask why I called these fracking tragedies and state that these problems would occur if the wells were not being fracked. While I agree that some problems would occur even if the wells were not fracked, I do not agree that all would occur. Take truck traffic. A conventional well does not come close to requiring the hundreds or thousands of truck trips required to haul fracking water and chemicals and then haul the wastewater. And while open pits might be required for conventional wells, there would not be nearly as many pits, pits as large as these are, or as much toxic waste without fracking. Fumes come from the flaring, as well as from pits. Fracking leads to emissions of hundreds of times the amount of toxic air pollutants when compared to wells that are not fracked during completion.

While North Dakota law provides for payments to a surface owner if there are damages, the amount of damages have to be agreed upon by the oil company. As you might imagine, surface owners are rarely if ever truly fully compensated for the harms they endure and cannot control on their own property.

December 12, 2012    View Comment    

On The latest science from Europe on fracking

Thanks for the comments. PublicEnvHealth Advocate: these are some of my recent posts, I have also posted a lot of other information from the last few years at: switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/amall

November 7, 2012    View Comment    

On Natural Gas Extraction Is Destroying Forests in Pennsylvania

NRDC agrees that renewable energy sources come with their own impacts and must be carefully sited and designed to minimize any harms to the environment. For more on NRDC's work on this topic, you can go to: http://www.nrdc.org/energy/renewables/default.asp

October 21, 2012    View Comment