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Fracking could contaminate drinking water: U.S. EPA

fracking

Fracking for shale oil and gas has not led to widespread pollution of drinking water, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency draft report said on Thursday, although it warned some drilling activities could potentially cause health risks.

The study, requested by Congress and five years in the making, said fracking could contaminate drinking water under certain conditions, such as when fluids used in the process leaked into the water table.

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Mount Everest's Glaciers Could Lose Up To 99 Percent Of Ice By 2100 Due To Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Glaciers meltingResearchers estimated that if greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise at the current rate, the glaciers in the Everest mountain region could lose over 70 percent of their volume by the year 2100.

The study warns the famous mountains are extremely sensitive to climate warming, and major ice loss should be anticipated throughout the 21st century, the European Geosciences Union reported.

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Statoil: North Sea pipeline breach 'significant'

North sea pipeline spillA February leak from the Gudrun platform in the North Sea had the potential to be a significant and fatal incident, an investigation from Statoil found.

Gudrun was Statoil's first new operation on the Norwegian continental shelf in nearly a decade when it came online in early 2014. The facility was shut down briefly in February after a leak was detected. In its investigation, Statoil said the leak of about 140 cubic feet of material was the result of a crack extending nearly the entire circumference of a two-inch pipeline.

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Broken Pipeline Spills Oil on Coastline Near Santa Barbara

santa barbara oil spillAn emergency cleanup is underway Tuesday afternoon along the coastline near Santa Barbara after an oil pipeline leaked 21,000 gallons, some of which made it into the ocean.

Coast Guard crews responded after reports of an oil slick in the ocean, also seen on the sand at Refugio State Beach, around noon. The slick was initially estimated to be about a half-mile long but was reported to have spread to 4 miles wide by 3:30 p.m.

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‘Disaster after disaster’ hits Marshall Islands as climate change kicks in

Marshall Islands climate changeThe atolls of the Marshall Islands are narrow and practically level with the sea, leaving their 68,000 residents nowhere to move to as a rising sea and increasingly frequent floods threatens to swamp the country. Unlike in many parts of the world where climate change often seems a distant threat, for the Marshallese it is already a daily reality.

Keslynna’s grandmother, Rusina Rusin, said the land has been in her family for too many generations to count, passed down from mother to daughter in the country’s matrilineal social system. She said she has noticed the increasing unpredictability of the weather.

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Antarctic Ice Shelf Is A Few Years From Disintegration: NASA

Antarctic ice shelf near disappearingThe last intact section of one of Antarctica's mammoth ice shelves is weakening fast and will likely disintegrate completely in the next few years, contributing further to rising sea levels, according to a NASA study released on Thursday.

The research focused on a remnant of the so-called Larsen B Ice Shelf, which has existed for at least 10,000 years but partially collapsed in 2002. What is left covers about 625 square miles (1,600 square km), about half the size of Rhode Island.

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What's causing Texas earthquakes? Fracking 'most likely,' report says

Texas earthquakes caused by frackingAccording to the U.S. Geological Survey, the Dallas area has suffered almost 40 small earthquakes (magnitude 2.0 or higher) since the beginning of this year, the latest a magnitude-2.7 quake near Farmers Branch on Monday. Many of the epicenters were recorded in Farmers Branch and Irving, with a couple to the south in Venus.

"The quakes don't sound like much to somebody from California," Jim Wells told CNN. "But when you are sitting right on top of them, they are more than noticeable. They will shake the entire house, and you have no doubt about it when you have gone through it. We have in my home perhaps 100 or more wall hangings, pieces of art -- prints, etchings, oil originals -- and none of them are hanging straight."

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