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EPA To Expand Federal Oversight Of Fracking Fluids

frackingThe Environmental Protection Agency announced plans on Wednesday to begin developing rules requiring makers and processors of certain chemical cocktails used in the oil and gas industry to maintain and submit records on those chemicals.

The agency, which said it plans to "initiate a dialogue process to seek public input" on the design and scope of the reporting requirements, would also be ordering the companies to submit health and safety studies related to the various chemical cocktails they produce.


Gas company whistle-blower details spills, errors

Gas company whistle blowerOn a bright fall day in 2008, Scott Ely arrived at the natural gas well a few hundred feet from his home to find work strangely stilled.

His fellow employees of Cabot Oil and Gas Corp.'s drilling subsidiary were watching the only thing moving: a huge plume of gas "like Niagara Falls going upwards" buffeting the drilling rig from below, he remembered. The gas in the air was sickening.


Global warming gases 'hit record high' says UN panel - but CO2 may not be worst

Co2 levelsGlobal warming gases have increased beyond the worst predictions of the UN's climate experts - exceeding the worst of seven emissions predictions laid down by the UN's World Meteorological Organisations.

Weather stations in the Andes, in Alaska and the south Pacific helped to gather the data, which showed surges in various 'greenhouse' gases, including gases used as replacements for the CFCs previously blamed for eroding the ozone layer.


Vote to frack in Delaware River Basin delayed for now

Deleware River Basin fracking vote delayedThe Delaware River Basin Commission on Friday postponed a meeting set for Monday to consider draft rules for natural-gas wells developed using a controversial drilling process.

On Thursday, Gov. Jack Markell told the commission Delaware would cast a vote against the proposals. Commission officials said the delay was intended to give the five-member panel more time to consider the issue.


Report: Climate change worsens extreme weather events

Climate changeHeat waves, floods and other extreme weather worsen with global warming, suggests a major international climate report released today.  The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, obtained in draft form by USA TODAY, stresses that expanding cities and populations worldwide, also raise the odds of severe impacts from weather disasters.

"Unprecedented extreme weather and climate events" look likely in coming decades as a result of a changing climate, says the draft report. The final version was released early today by IPCC chief Rajendra Pachauri at a meeting hosted by report sponsors, the World Meteorological Organization and United Nations Environment Programme, in Kampala, Uganda.


Oil and Gas Industry Is Inflating the Job-Creating Potential of Shale Gas Development by as Much as 900 Percent

Fracking employment highly exaggeratedMajor oil and gas interests are spending millions to convince Americans that they can lift us from our economic slump in part by fracking our nation's shale gas reserves.

But a new set of analyses released today by the national consumer advocacy organization Food & Water Watch finds that the oil and gas industry is exaggerating the job-creating potential of shale gas development, in one case by 900 percent.


IEA: Warming may be irreversible by 2017

Global warming irreversible by 2017Rising energy demands could result in irreversible global warming by 2017 without strict new standards, an energy watchdog group said this week in London.

The International Energy Agency said in its latest World Energy Outlook, released Wednesday, that a "remarkable" 5 percent jump in global primary energy demand last year pushed greenhouse gas emissions to a new high due to the rebound of the world's economies following the 2008 financial crisis.


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