Jan 152015
 

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is the process of using pressurized liquid to crack rock deep underground so previously inaccessible hydrocarbons, such as natural gas, can be extracted. This technique calls for several million gallons of water mixed with sand and toxic chemicals to be injected at high pressure into a well to create fractures deep underground. These cracks form conduits along which natural gas, petroleum and fracking fluids migrate into the well for extraction. More than a million U.S. fracking operations have already been undertaken. Proponents point to the benefits of home-produced energy such as jobs, improved national security and reduced air pollution from this cleaner-burning fuel. Opponents point to the adverse environmental impacts of fracking including contamination of ground water, depletion of fresh water, and toxic waste water disposal. It is estimated that our fracking operations produced 280 billion gallons of wastewater in 2012 –or enough to flood all of Washington, D.C. in a 22-foot deep toxic lagoon. Health advocates warn of the likelihood of carcinogenic chemicals being used in the fracking process, but this industry has refused to disclose which chemicals it pumps into fracking wells. This refusal goes unchallenged because the Bush administration granted exceptions for fracking chemicals in the protections provided by the 1974 Safe Drinking Water Act. Fracking opponents also warn of the risks to air quality and climate change due to significant methane releases during the fracking process. Advocates claim natural gas is not a bridge to a clean energy future because methane, the main component of natural gas, is 72 times more potent than carbon dioxide in causing climate change. Methane leakage from fracking wells could negate the benefits of lower carbon emissions that come from burning natural gas. Advocates caution that fracking will increase overall emissions since cheap natural gas encourages more energy use and slows the development of renewable fuel technology. New research also suggests these oil and gas drilling operations may cause small on-site earthquakes as well as make local fault zones sensitive to shock waves from large distant quakes. A recent study found that a strong earthquake which occurs halfway around the world can set off small to moderate quakes near fracking operations.

Pending Legislations:

S.1135 & H.R.1921 – FRAC Act To amend the Safe Drinking Water Act to repeal a certain exemption for hydraulic fracturing, and for other purposes

S.1234 & H.R.2513 – Fracturing Regulations are Effective in State Hands Act

I oppose reforming current fracking policy and wish to defeat H.R.1135 & H.R.1921 and S.1234 & H.R.2513

I support amending the Safe Drinking Water Act to repeal the exemption from restrictions on underground injection of fluids or propping agents granted to hydraulic fracturing operations relating to oil and natural gas production activities under such Act; requiring disclosure of the chemicals and proppants intended for use in underground injections before the commencement of such operations and the chemicals used after the end of such operations, and wish to identify a legislator who will either reintroduce S.1135 or H.R.1921 – FRAC Act To amend the Safe Drinking Water Act to repeal a certain exemption for hydraulic fracturing, and for other purposes (113th Congress 2013-2014), or a similar version thereof

I support removing federal jurisdiction over fracking operations and allowing states to have the sole authority to promulgate or enforce any regulation, guidance or permit requirement regarding the treatment of a well by the application of fluids under pressure to which propping agents may be added for the expressly designed purpose of initiating or propagating fractures in a target geologic formation in order to enhance production of oil, natural gas, or geothermal production activities, and wish to identify a legislator who will either reintroduce S.1234 or H.R.2513 – Fracturing Regulations are Effective in State Hands Act (113th Congress 2013-2014), or a similar version thereof

 Posted by at 12:00 am
Jan 152015
 

Until a 30-year moratorium expired in 2012, oil exploration and drilling off our Atlantic and Pacific coasts had been prohibited. However, by recently approving the use of sonic cannons to locate energy deposits deep beneath the ocean floor, our current administration has recently decided to allow oil exploration and drilling off our Atlantic coast. It has estimated that about 5 billion barrels of recoverable oil and 38 trillion cubic feet of recoverable natural gas lie beneath federal waters from Florida to Maine. Even so, past court decisions have upheld the right of a state to ban drilling if it threatens its coast or fisheries. Unhappy environmentalists are worried about the use of sonic cannons, which shoot sound waves 100 times louder than a jet engine, into waters shared by whales and turtles. They, along with fishing and tourism advocates, fear an oil spill or accident could irreparably damage coastal ecosystems along with the industries they support. The memory of the ecosystem damage resulting from BP’s 210 million gallon Gulf oil spill in 2010 is still fresh in the minds of many. They claim these ecosystems have still not recovered, and say there remain many risks in the business of deepwater drilling which oil companies are not prepared for.

Pending Legislation:

H.R.2231 – Offshore Energy and Jobs Act

I oppose offshore oil drilling and wish to identify a legislator who will sponsor a bill to renew the 30-year drilling moratorium which prohibits oil extraction off our coastlines

I support developing a five-year oil and gas leasing program, to determine a specified domestic strategic production goal for the development of oil and natural gas as a result of that program; implementing a leasing program that includes at least 50% of the available unleased acreage within each outer Continental Shelf planning area considered to have the largest undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources, and wish to pass H.R.2231

 Posted by at 12:00 am
Jan 152015
 

The uncompleted Keystone Pipeline System is intended to transport Canadian tar sands oil through our northern states to refineries in Texas. Tar sands oil is not like the typical petroleum pumped from Saudi Arabia or Texas. Extracting and refining this type of oil requires vast amounts of heat, water and chemicals. Three barrels of water are required to extract a single barrel of tar sands oil. This water comes from rivers and underground aquifers. Nearly all of the 2.4 million gallons of toxic waste water generated from this process each day must be held in large tailing pools where it can migrate into surface and ground water supplies. Keystone would cross six states and several major rivers including the Yellowstone, Missouri and Red Rivers. It is also located near the Ogallala Aquifer which supplies water to 25% of America’s irrigated land and drinking water for two million Americans. When tar sands oil spills into a waterway, it is much more difficult to clean up than conventional oil since it sinks rather than floats. In fact, there is currently no proven method for cleaning up this type of spill. In 2010, a million gallons of tar sands oil spilled from a pipeline into Michigan’s Kalamazoo River. After spending more than 4 years and a billion dollars in cleanup efforts, nearly 40 miles of the Kalamazoo is still contaminated. Keystone supporters say this project will create jobs and reduce our dependence on imported oil. Opponents say dirty tar sands oil is an example of the type of material which must be left in the ground if climate change is to be controlled. However, a State Department report downplayed the impact Keystone would have on climate change, or containing the expansion of Canada’s vast oil sands, saying that if Keystone is cancelled, this oil will instead be shipped by rail. The Obama administration has repeatedly delayed its decision on whether to proceed with building the Keystone pipeline.

Pending Legislation:

H.R.3 – Northern Route Approval Act

I oppose reforming current Keystone pipeline policy and wish to defeat H.R.3

I support declaring that a presidential permit shall not be required for the Keystone Pipeline, including the Nebraska reroute evaluated in the Final Evaluation Report approved by the Nebraska governor; and deeming the final environmental impact statement issued on August 26, 2011, coupled with such Final Evaluation Report, to satisfy all requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 and of the National Historic Preservation Act, and wish to pass H.R.3

 Posted by at 12:00 am