Energy

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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StateImpact Oklahoma
7:10 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Study: Climate Change Challenges Oklahoma’s Temperature-Sensitive Economy

Future temperature changes pose serious risks to the climate-sensitive agricultural and energy industries in Oklahoma and other Great Plains states, a new study on the business and economic effects of climate change concludes.

Oklahoma's average summer temperature range is expected to increase from 81.7-83.58°F to 87.0-93.51°F from 2020 to 2099, the report predicts.

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The Two-Way
12:25 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

U.S. Moves Toward Easing A Ban On Exporting Its Oil

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 3:15 pm

A U.S. ban on exporting crude oil that has stood for nearly 40 years could be eased a bit this summer, as the Obama administration is seen clearing a path for American companies to export the first shipments of unrefined oil in decades.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

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Energy
3:58 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

In Wyoming, Going Deep To Draw Energy From Coal

Linc Energy has installed 44 monitoring wells at its proposed test site near Wright, Wyo., to establish baseline water quality.
Stephanie Joyce for NPR

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 8:42 am

The United States is the Saudi Arabia of coal. The only catch is that most coal is buried too deep for conventional mining.

In the tradition of fracking pioneers in the oil and gas industries, an Australian company working in Wyoming wants to use an unconventional technique to access that deep coal: burning it underground.

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StateImpact Texas
1:27 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

Feds Target Oil And Gas Industry For Underpaying Workers

Exhibit from lawsuit: worker's time sheet showing 90 hours in eight consecutive days.
Credit Dave Fehling / StateImpact Texas

In states with the most oil and gas drilling, including Texas, Oklahoma and North Dakota, the U.S. Department of Labor has won back pay for over 4,000 energy industry workers in just the past year.

It totaled $6.7 million dollars, accounting for a third of all such settlements by all types of industries nationwide.

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Here & Now
12:54 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

Oklahoma Experiencing Dramatic Increase In Earthquakes

Chad Devereaux examines bricks that fell from three sides of his in-laws home in Sparks, Okla., Nov, 6, 2011, following two earthquakes that hit the area in less than 24 hours. (Sue Ogrocki/AP)

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 1:47 pm

So far this year, Oklahoma has had more earthquakes of a magnitude 3.0 or greater than any other state in the country — including California. More than 200, just since January.

This is a new and remarkable phenomenon. Just five years ago, Oklahoma was averaging only two 3.0 earthquakes a year. Now, it’s averaging one or two a day.

Scientists are saying that oil and gas-related activity, including fracking and wastewater disposal wells in the state, may be partially to blame.

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