Energy

StateImpact Oklahoma
1:04 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Oklahoma Officials May Reconsider Keeping Oil Train Info Secret

Sam Beebe Flickr Creative Commons

In the wake of deadly derailments, fiery explosions and dangerous spills, the federal government in May ordered railroads to share with state authorities more information about some crude oil shipments.

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Energy
9:39 am
Sun July 13, 2014

Corporation Commission Will Ask For Public's Input On Wind And Solar Issues

Oklahoma Corporation Commission Chairman Bob Anthony
Credit Oklahoma Corporation Commission

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission plans to seek the public's input in the placement of wind farms and the regulation of rooftop solar panels.

The commission's public utility division held the second of two meetings last Friday that lay the groundwork for issuing a notice of inquiry on wind and solar issues.

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Here & Now
12:44 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Oil Train Workers Raise Questions About Safety

BNSF Railway, the second largest freight network in the U.S., is at the center of the boom in crude by rail. The railroad touts its commitment to safety. Current and former workers question the safety culture on the ground. (Michael Werner)

Originally published on Thu July 10, 2014 2:00 pm

Crude oil shipments by rail increased by more than 80 percent, nationally, last year. Most of it is coming from the Bakken oil fields of North Dakota. That crude is more flammable than other types of oil, and has been shown to catch fire and explode when trains derail.

More than 15 trains of Bakken oil move through some parts of the Northwest each week, en route to refineries and terminals in Washington and Oregon.

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All Tech Considered
3:54 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

A User-Friendly Gardening System For The Plant-Challenged

SproutsIO Inc. allows people to easily grow fresh produce inside a home or office. The system is a spinoff of research done at the MIT Media Lab.
SproutsIO Inc.

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 9:07 am

Don't have a green thumb but seeking the therapeutic nature of gardening? Want the convenience and satisfaction of growing your own produce at home? Not to worry: All you need is an electrical outlet, a flat surface and some water.

Meet SproutsIO Inc., a "plug-and-play" user-friendly microfarming appliance for people to easily grow fresh fruits and veggies inside their home or office.

Here's how it works:

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StateImpact Oklahoma
1:25 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

Oklahoma Agrees To Keep Oil Train Shipments Secret

Flames and smoke are seen in an May 2014 oil-train derailment along Virginia's James River.
Waterkeeper Alliance Inc. Flickr Creative Commons

Surging oil production in states like North Dakota has outpaced pipeline capacity, and the energy industry has turned to railroads to transport oil from fields to refineries.

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Energy
3:00 pm
Fri July 4, 2014

'Hell Must Look Like This': A Grueling Year For Train-Struck Town

Originally published on Sun July 6, 2014 5:27 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This weekend marks one year since a deadly train derailment in eastern Canada that killed 47 people. A U.S.-owned tanker train filled with oil from North Dakota derailed, sending plumes of fire through a small Quebec town. The explosion destroyed or contaminated much of the business district. North Country Public Radio's Brian Mann reports that residents are still sorting out what parts of their lives and their community can be rebuilt.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
6:36 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

High-Rate Disposal Wells Could Have Triggered Oklahoma Earthquakes, New Study Suggests

The "Chambers" disposal well in southeast Oklahoma City.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

This year, Oklahoma has had more earthquakes than California. There is a growing body of scientific research that suggests oil and gas production is fueling this increase in seismic activity.

new paper published today in the journal Science, suggests a small number of wastewater wells used in drilling operations could be responsible for many of the quakes.

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Environment
3:09 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

Study: Surge In Okla. Quakes Can Be Traced To Drilling Operations

Originally published on Thu July 3, 2014 5:26 pm

StateImpact Oklahoma's Joe Wertz reports on a new study that links a "swarm" of earthquakes to four specific, high-volume oil and gas industry disposal wells. It's one of several reports that show oil and gas activity could be causing a rise in earthquake activity.

Parallels
2:44 am
Mon June 30, 2014

In Shetland, Oil Shapes Debate Over Scottish Independence

Scotland's offshore oil platforms in the North Sea generate significant wealth for the nation — especially for the Shetland Islands, where oil tanker traffic boosts the local economy.
Andy Buchanan - WPA Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 12:32 pm

In September, Scotland will vote on whether to break away from the United Kingdom and declare independence.

So far, the debate has been largely about money: One poll says most voters would switch their vote if it meant an extra 500 pounds, or around $800 dollars.

North Sea oil and gas are central to this economic debate — nowhere more so than in the remote Shetland Islands, many miles from the Scottish mainland, where tankers carrying North Sea oil come ashore. The oil has transformed both the local and national economy.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
7:40 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Town Hall Turns Testy As Oklahomans Seek Action And Answers On Earthquakes

Shaken residents line up inside Edmond's Waterloo Road Baptist Church to voice concerns and ask representatives from the Corporation Commission and the state Geological Survey questions about recent earthquakes.
Joe Wertz StateImpact Oklahoma

Oklahomans rattled by a surge of earthquakes on Thursday packed a contentious town hall meeting in Edmond and demanded answers and action from public officials.

There was booing and shouts for regulators to impose a moratorium on wastewater disposal wells used by the oil and gas industry, which scientists have linked to Oklahoma’s exponential increase in earthquake activity.

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