Fracking Impacts - Climate Chaos

Fugitive emission of methane, a potent greenhouse gas leaking out of gas wells, pipelines and compressor stations, may total over 10 percent of production making fracking worse than burning coal in terms of climate change, over a 20 year time scale. Continue reading

Concentration Of Methane Upwind (Blue) And Downwind (Red) Of The Unita Basin Gasfields In Utah Showing That The Field Is Leaking Large Amounts Of Gas (Click To Enlarge)

U.S. Methane Study Says Emissions 50 Percent Higher Than EPA Estimates (Huffington Post, November 2013) US is spewing 50 percent more methane — a potent heat-trapping gas — than the federal government estimates, a new comprehensive scientific study says, much of it is coming from oil and gas drilling areas

New Study Finds High Methane Emissions from Gas Drilling (Allegheny Front, August 2013) A new study has found “alarmingly high” levels of methane – between 6.2 and 11.7 percent – leaking out of tight gas wells, pipelines and compressor stations in Utah, making it worse than coal in terms of global warming over a 20-year time span

Methane leaks erode green credentials of natural gas (Nature, January 2013) Results from a field study in the Uinta Basin, Utah, suggest an eye-popping 9% of the total methane production, a potent greenhouse gas, is leaking, double the cumulative loss rates estimated from industry data

Australian scientists find excess greenhouse gas near fracking (LA Times, November 2012) Researchers from Southern Cross University have detected excess greenhouse gas levels near the site of Australia’s biggest coal seam gas field, even higher than in Russia’s massive Siberian gas fields, where environmental protection has been minimal

US Shale Gas Drives Up Coal Exports (Science Daily, October 2012) A report by researchers at the University of Manchester has concluded that whilst the US is burning less coal, often attributed to shale gas production, millions of tonnes of unused coal are being exported to the UK, Europe and Asia

Shale gas ‘worse than coal’ for climate (BBC News, April 2011) The first comprehensive analysis of the greenhouse gas footprint of shale gas, from Cornell University, shows it is at least 20% greater and perhaps more than twice as great as coal on a 20-year horizon, and is comparable over 100 years

Climate Benefits of Natural Gas May Be Overstated (Pro Publica, January 2011) Environmental Protection Agency estimates methane gas leaks from the hydraulic fracturing of shale gas are 9,000 times higher than previously reported, making shale as bad for the climate as coal over a 20 year time scale

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