Call for a Fair and Transparent Trial for Mongolian Mining Activists

November 27, 2013 • Shreema Mehta

Last month, a group of Mongolian community activists led by Tsetsegee Munkhbayar, recipient of the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize in 2007, were arrested outside the Mongolian Parliament. They were at the Parliament protesting proposals to abolish mining regulations that would protect the country’s waterways from decades of destruction from irresponsible mining companies operating in a regulation-free environment. The activists were arrested after the accidental firing of a gun, according to Mongolian police.

Proposed California fracking regulations friendly to the industry, not the public

November 22, 2013 • Jhon Arbelaez

On November 15, the Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR), released its proposed regulations for fracking and other types of well stimulation, as stipulated by SB4. The regulations are the first in California to regulate fracking and acidizing. Although hailed by regulators and the oil industry as the toughest regulations in the country, they are not. Far from perfect, the regs leave much to be desired in the way of public health and environmental protection.

Just in Time for the Holidays- Three Huge Gifts for the Oil and Gas Industry

November 21, 2013 • Aaron Mintzes

The House of Representatives this week passed three oil and gas development bills. 

HR 2728, the Promoting States’ Rights to Promote American Energy Security Act, prevents the Department of Interior’s (DOI) hydraulic fracturing rule from going in to effect. 
HR 1965, the Federal Lands Jobs and Energy Security Act, forces sales of the people’s lands to the oil and gas industry while charging protesters $5,000 for their input. 
HR 1900, the Natural Gas Permitting Reform Act, undercuts local authorities and fast tracks more miles of pipelines through the parks, playgrounds, and backyards of Americans.

Fracking water and waste: Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Ohio

November 13, 2013 • Meghan Betcher

In recent years, natural gas production from the Marcellus Shale has increased dramatically. Since the very beginning of this shale gas boom, water has been a key concern. The issue of water use and pollution due to hydraulic fracturing has been a hot topic amongst environmentalists, industry, and the media, but a comprehensive analysis of water use and disposal for the Marcellus Shale was lacking. Because of this, we took on the task of using publically available data to perform a life cycle analysis of water used for hydraulic fracturing in West Virginia and Pennsylvania.

This report can be found here and was summarized on this blog previously.

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Romania Votes “No” on Rosia Montana Open-Pit Mine

November 12, 2013 • Payal Sampat

Good news: The Romanian parliament rejected the proposed Rosia Montana open-pit gold mine on Monday, after months of protests on the streets of Bucharest and around the world. As we've blogged about before, this mine proposal epitomizes “dirty gold” for many reasons.

As DOGGR dithers, fracking and acidization threaten Californians’ health

November 12, 2013 • Jhon Arbelaez

On September 20, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law legislation that will require regulations on fracking, acidizing, and other well stimulation techniques.

The law, known as SB4, requires a study of the potential impacts of well stimulation to be completed by January 1, 2015. 

Mientras el fracturamiento hidráulico y la acidificación amenazan la salud de los Californianos, DOGGR oscila en sus labores

November 12, 2013 • Jhon Arbelaez

El 20 de septiembre, el gobernador de California, Jerry Brown, firmó la ley SB4, la cual requiere regulaciones al fracturamiento hidráulico, la acidificación y otras técnicas de estimulación de pozos. La ley también requiere un estudio a los potenciales impactos de todo tipo de estimulación de pozos, a ser completado para el 01 de enero del 2015.

Fracking Causes Democratic Outbreaks Across the US

November 6, 2013 • Bruce Baizel

A funny thing happened on the way to the shale revolution – an outbreak of democracy that will send tremors through the oil and gas industry and its political backers. 

Voters in three elections in three different cities (Boulder, Ft. Collins and Lafayette), located on the voter-rich Front Range of Colorado, followed the city of Longmont’s lead and decisively passed bans or moratoria on fracking or drilling.  A fourth election in Broomfield is still too close to call.