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  1. #1
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Default Shale oil and gas development news and views

    I had started a thread many moons ago about tracking various issues related to the new Marcellus Shale development that a lot of folks in Philadelphia seem quite unaware of. Don't know what happened to that thread but I figured I should start a new one and have it as a news resource for various things, not just in PA or Marcellus Shale related but overall shale oil/gas development and allied industries.

    So to start off, here are a few newsworthy items:

    Study suggests shale-gas development causing rapid landscape change | Farm and Dairy - The Auction Guide and Rural Marketplace
    The concentration of existing core forest in the northern part of the state — and the focus of drilling in this area, largely on private land — led the researchers to conclude that remaining areas of public land are key refuges for the protection of wildlife, ecosystems and associated ecosystem services.

    “These areas should receive further protection,” Drohan said. “An organized effort across government and private entities may be a way to manage development.”

    Role of methane in new oil and gas air pollution rule questioned - Business, Government Legal News from throughout WV

    The new federal rules limiting air pollution from oil and gas operations are aimed at smog precursors and air toxics — but it's the role of methane in the rules that bothers industry and environmentalists alike.

    And as the effective date for the rules approaches, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency faces possible challenge from both sides.
    (this is going to get really interesting...; and I think this article was very well written and captures the main points in a simple language)



    Commission seeks extension on Md. drilling study - BusinessWeek
    Members of a commission scrutinizing natural gas extraction in western Maryland are asking the governor for more time to complete a study on the controversial drilling method known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

    The Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission is asking for more time to complete a best practices study that would examine technical issues of drilling, environmental impacts and infrastructure needs.
    It's interesting to note that while PA has dove headlong into fracking while not even collecting appropriate severance taxes, two neighboring states are watching the issues unfold here and make more cautious and aware decisions. NY has a huge swath of Marcellus Shale deposits it can tap, and MD has a small sliver, but both are taking measured approaches to development.


    No EPA action after 16 more Dimock well tests - Philly.com
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Friday it would not take any action in response to tests of 16 more drinking-water wells in the embattled natural gas-drilling town of Dimock, Pa., and one resident whose well showed elevated levels of carcinogenic arsenic declined the agency’s offer for alternative water.

    The test results largely reinforced findings the EPA released recently on its tests of 31 other residential water wells in the Susquehanna County township, where opponents and supporters of Marcellus Shale natural gas development have clashed. The EPA intervened in Dimock in January after some residents expressed doubt about a state finding of improved water quality in the town.

    With North Carolina

    North Carolina is not traditionally thought of as an oil and gas state. However, recent geological research regarding shale gas deposits and the potential authorization of shale gas extraction technologies in North Carolina could change that. Legislation enacted last year set in motion a process that could result in the legalization of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing – game-changing technologies that have turned shale deposits in other parts of the country into top resource plays. The North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (“DENR”) has preliminarily concluded that hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling could properly be authorized if an adequate regulatory program is established and implemented. As a result of DENR’s comprehensive study, enabling legislation is expected to go forward in the 2012 legislative session that begins in May.

    (if i had extra money burning my pockets, i'd buy up a few hundred acres in rural North Carolina inclusive of mineral and oil/gas rights before the oil and gas company landmen start showing up... )
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
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  2. #2
    seand is offline Senior Member
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    Actually you would buy lots and lots of water trucks. Water to pump into the ground, trucks to carry salt and heavy metal laden water that comes back up off to be pumped back under the ground in Ohio, water to replace farmer's wells when the aquifer is no longer drinkable. You make money coming and going.
    Are Fracking Wastewater Wells Causing Ohio’s Earthquakes? - Popular Mechanics

  3. #3
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by seand View Post
    Actually you would buy lots and lots of water trucks. Water to pump into the ground, trucks to carry salt and heavy metal laden water that comes back up off to be pumped back under the ground in Ohio, water to replace farmer's wells when the aquifer is no longer drinkable. You make money coming and going.
    Are Fracking Wastewater Wells Causing Ohio’s Earthquakes? - Popular Mechanics
    that too, although oil and gas companies are wise to this problem and some have developed technologies to reuse/recycle as much water as possible in their fracking operations so that they don't have to deal with additional costs.

    there are companies that are focusing on addressing this issue though, Hekmann Co being one of the big ones...they are even converting all their truck fleet from diesel to nat gas while they're at it.
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
    - Ralph Nader

  4. #4
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    I started a thread here about Chesapeake and Aubrey McClendon. No idea why no one is interested in this industry considering it's responsible for putting our governor in office and cutting state funding to our schools.

    It's going to get insanely interesting in the coming months/years as these guys desperately try to export our natural gas to Europe and Asia to artificially drive up the price Pennsylvania consumers pay for natural gas.
    "People who don't punch their ponies make me sick!"

  5. #5
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future (Penn Future) just released a plain language analysis and guide to the new Act 13 (Marcellus Impact Fee law that Corbett signed).

    http://www.pennfuture.org/UserFiles/...llusreport.pdf


    Check out the two-page summary here:

    http://www.pennfuture.org/UserFiles/...10_summary.pdf

    The full report is available here:

    Penn Future - - Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future: Working to Protect Pennsylvania's Environment and Economy
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
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  6. #6
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    mixiboi is offline Philly Remixed
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    I think a lot of people are still burned by the casino wars that they are shy to be bitten twice.

    Especially over something that isn't NIMBY.
    Graphic Designer, Social Media Consultant. Twitter: @Sdlaugh

  7. #7
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Abundant oil doesn't mean energy independence, SAFE report warns - Oil & Gas Journal

    Abundant oil doesn't mean energy independence, SAFE report warns

    Abundant US oil resources made possible by new technology potentially will provide significant economic benefits to the nation, but won’t make the country energy independent by itself, a new report from Securing America’s Future Energy’s Energy Security Leadership Council concluded. “This can only be accomplished by reducing the role of oil in our economy,” it said.

    “‘Energy independence’ for the United States is an admirable goal, but even if the US were to produce enough oil to meet our demand, the domestic price is still set on the global market, meaning a potential supply disruption anywhere can impact the price of oil everywhere,” said Herb Kelleher, cofounder and chairman emeritus of Southwest Airlines and a member of the ESLC, as the report was released at the Bush Institute at Southern Methodist University in Dallas on May 8.





    In short, "Drill Baby Drill" doesn't lead to "energy independence" no matter how much some people wish it to.
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
    - Ralph Nader

  8. #8
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Fracking Sand Threatens Gas Well Workers, Researcher Says

    Sand dust created from the hydraulic fracturing to extract natural gas from rock is one of the most dangerous threats to workers at wells blossoming across the U.S., a government safety researcher said.

    About four out of five air samples from well sites in five states in the past two years exceeded recommended limits for silica particles, said Eric Esswein, an industrial hygienist at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. The particles in sand dust created during the so-called fracking process can lodge in the lungs and cause potentially fatal silicosis, he said today at a conference sponsored by the Institute of Medicine.

    Drilling companies and their workers do a better job handling potentially toxic chemicals than they do sand dust, for which “there’s really no inherent protection” at well sites, Esswein said.


    Full article at link below:
    Fracking Sand Threatens Gas Well Workers, Researcher Says - Businessweek
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
    - Ralph Nader

  9. #9
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    The "associated gas" that is found along with oil in places like the Bakken Shale in North Dakota is simply burnt off. This flaring is a sight to behold in the night skies of Montana, North Dakota, and elsewhere. I have heard of airline pilots gets scared and reporting "flames" as they fly overhead.


    U.S. shale causes rise in waste gas pollution
    (Reuters) - The U.S. shale energy boom is fuelling a rise in the burning of waste gas after years of decline, a World Bank source told Reuters ahead of the release of new data, giving environmentalists more ammunition against the industry.

    Global gas flaring crept up by 4.5 percent in 2011, the first rise since 2008 and equivalent to the annual gas use of Denmark, preliminary data from the World Bank shows.


    Britain's annual gas consumption is just under 100 bcm, and Norway's yearly production just above that - which makes the 140 bcm flared globally over a third more than Europe's top consumer and producer, respectively.

    In current market terms, 140 bcm of gas would be worth over $100 billion (61 billion pounds) in barrels of oil equivalent.


    more at the link below:
    Exclusive - U.S. shale causes rise in waste gas pollution | Reuters
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
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  10. #10
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Drought Conditions Stall Water Withdrawals for Fracking

    Record low water levels in the Susquehanna River Basin have forced a halt to water removal by natural gas drilling companies.

    Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, uses a mixture of water and chemicals shot deep into the ground with massive force to fracture rock shale and release the natural gas contained inside. According to a report from the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC), the drought conditions of this spring have temporarily suspended 17 different water withdrawals, impacting 10 drilling companies in Bradford, Luzerne, Lycoming, Susquehanna and Tioga Counties.

    Susan Obleski, director of communications for the SRBC, said the water withdrawal suspensions shouldn’t impact drilling operations at this point.

    “The companies have known all along that they really needed to diversify their water supply sources, so these individual withdraws at this point are not having an impact on production and we don’t anticipate that they would because they have diversified,” she said.

    Obleski said most companies attempt to pull water from many different sources to prevent low water levels from inhibiting extraction. She said the most common sources apart from rivers and streams in other areas of the state include permission to draw from public water supply systems or recycling acid mine drainage.

    She admitted it’s an abnormal time of the year to be concerned about water levels, but little snowfall this winter and rain this spring have dropped the main branch of the Susquehanna River to some of the lowest levels it has had since record-keeping started at the beginning of the last century.

    “April obviously is normally the wettest time of the year. We haven’t been getting the rainfall, so we are concerned about not only the stream flow levels but groundwater levels in many parts of the state, especially northeast Pennsylvania,” Obleski said.

    She said it’s not too early for the general public to consider water conservation practices, because predicting a consistent rainfall period is not guaranteed and drought levels could continue into the summer.

    Drought Conditions Stall Water Withdrawals for Fracking | Essential Public Radio
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
    - Ralph Nader

  11. #11
    billy ross is online now Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by phillyaggie View Post
    Abundant oil doesn't mean energy independence, SAFE report warns - Oil & Gas Journal

    Abundant oil doesn't mean energy independence, SAFE report warns

    Abundant US oil resources made possible by new technology potentially will provide significant economic benefits to the nation, but won’t make the country energy independent by itself, a new report from Securing America’s Future Energy’s Energy Security Leadership Council concluded. “This can only be accomplished by reducing the role of oil in our economy,” it said.

    “‘Energy independence’ for the United States is an admirable goal, but even if the US were to produce enough oil to meet our demand, the domestic price is still set on the global market, meaning a potential supply disruption anywhere can impact the price of oil everywhere,” said Herb Kelleher, cofounder and chairman emeritus of Southwest Airlines and a member of the ESLC, as the report was released at the Bush Institute at Southern Methodist University in Dallas on May 8.





    In short, "Drill Baby Drill" doesn't lead to "energy independence" no matter how much some people wish it to.
    You're reading too much into that. What if we change the headline from 'oil' to 'grains'? Grow, baby, grow doesn't lead to food independence? Of course it does - don't be a fool. Yes, when there is a drought in Russia or Australia American consumers will see higher prices for grains and products derived from grains, but the money is staying in the US, since we're a net exporter of grains, and it's not such a shock to our economy. The USA is pretty much self-sufficient in grains, meats, food in general, natural gas, coal, electricity, and nuclear energy. While some of those products are traded internationally on a grand scale and thus the domestic price is determined by world demand and supply factors, we are still largely buffered from the international markets in those products I listed. If the US becomes a net exporter of petroleum products (and I'd love to see that day), the story will become largely the same in that industry also.

  12. #12
    Zigster is offline Senior Member
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    Did We Find Too Much Natural Gas? - MarketWatch Video

    ‎"[I told Mayor Nutter] each [Philadelphia] household is saving $2200 a year"

    Please chime in if you have seen gas bill decreases of this magnitude (not due to warm weather).

  13. #13
    billy ross is online now Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zigster View Post
    Did We Find Too Much Natural Gas? - MarketWatch Video

    ‎"[I told Mayor Nutter] each [Philadelphia] household is saving $2200 a year"

    Please chime in if you have seen gas bill decreases of this magnitude (not due to warm weather).
    It's not just your PGW bill. It's your electric bill. It's also your bill for gasoline, diesel, manufactured goods, etc. Wherever natural gas can displace oil in the US, it's doing it. For years many operations had dual fuel burners. Now they run entirely on gas. Petrochemicals use gas as a feedstock.
    Last edited by billy ross; 05-11-2012 at 07:27 PM.

  14. #14
    Jayfar's Avatar
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    Default Marcellus Shale Coalition Hires State Senator's Wife

    Last edited by Jayfar; 08-15-2012 at 04:31 PM.
    “Guys like you I would dispatch with my roofing axe.” -- BootsywannabeACretin

  15. #15
    eldondre is online now Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy ross View Post
    You're reading too much into that. What if we change the headline from 'oil' to 'grains'? Grow, baby, grow doesn't lead to food independence? Of course it does - don't be a fool. Yes, when there is a drought in Russia or Australia American consumers will see higher prices for grains and products derived from grains, but the money is staying in the US, since we're a net exporter of grains, and it's not such a shock to our economy. The USA is pretty much self-sufficient in grains, meats, food in general, natural gas, coal, electricity, and nuclear energy. While some of those products are traded internationally on a grand scale and thus the domestic price is determined by world demand and supply factors, we are still largely buffered from the international markets in those products I listed. If the US becomes a net exporter of petroleum products (and I'd love to see that day), the story will become largely the same in that industry also.
    the us is usually the one mucking up the markets with overproduction and other distortionary policies that have generally degraded food quality and destroyed family farms. Then when we overproduce corn we started putting it in cars as a back door farm subsidy.
    Food - philly.com
    Last edited by eldondre; 08-16-2012 at 02:30 PM.
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  16. #16
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy ross View Post
    You're reading too much into that. What if we change the headline from 'oil' to 'grains'? Grow, baby, grow doesn't lead to food independence? Of course it does - don't be a fool. Yes, when there is a drought in Russia or Australia American consumers will see higher prices for grains and products derived from grains, but the money is staying in the US, since we're a net exporter of grains, and it's not such a shock to our economy. The USA is pretty much self-sufficient in grains, meats, food in general, natural gas, coal, electricity, and nuclear energy. While some of those products are traded internationally on a grand scale and thus the domestic price is determined by world demand and supply factors, we are still largely buffered from the international markets in those products I listed. If the US becomes a net exporter of petroleum products (and I'd love to see that day), the story will become largely the same in that industry also.
    So you don't put much weight in the words of Herb Kelleher, the guy who founded and ran one of the most long-term profitable airlines in the country?

    Worse, "grow baby grow" is indeed what the U.S. has been up to for the last 50 years, and it is draining the world's largest fresh water aquifer to nothingness... meaning, at the rate we do agriculture is not going to be sustaining past the next 30-50 years, depending on how much more water we suck up for growing corn...to feed our energy industry and almost every other industry. In short, "grow baby grow" isn't the solution, just as "drill baby drill" isn't either.

    The price rise seen in America due to drought isn't much-- a recent study has shown that to be the case. But those we subsidize our grain export to (Africa, Asia) will certainly suffer a great deal when that tap runs down to a trickle.

    Food is too cheap in America so we are profligate with it-- the underground water is free of charge and land is cheap, and we have socialized the environmental impact while privatizing the benefits, as usual. We may be self-sufficient for now, but another dust bowl is coming, and we have many more millions of mouths to feed... if you think American industrial farming is sustainable and just fine the way it is, you might get a rude wake up call...or your children certainly may.
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by phillyaggie View Post
    I had started a thread many moons ago about tracking various issues related to the new Marcellus Shale development that a lot of folks in Philadelphia seem quite unaware of. Don't know what happened to that thread but I figured I should start a new one and have it as a news resource for various things, not just in PA or Marcellus Shale related but overall shale oil/gas development and allied industries.

    So to start off, here are a few newsworthy items:

    Study suggests shale-gas development causing rapid landscape change | Farm and Dairy - The Auction Guide and Rural Marketplace



    Role of methane in new oil and gas air pollution rule questioned - Business, Government Legal News from throughout WV



    (this is going to get really interesting...; and I think this article was very well written and captures the main points in a simple language)



    Commission seeks extension on Md. drilling study - BusinessWeek


    It's interesting to note that while PA has dove headlong into fracking while not even collecting appropriate severance taxes, two neighboring states are watching the issues unfold here and make more cautious and aware decisions. NY has a huge swath of Marcellus Shale deposits it can tap, and MD has a small sliver, but both are taking measured approaches to development.


    No EPA action after 16 more Dimock well tests - Philly.com



    With North Carolina




    (if i had extra money burning my pockets, i'd buy up a few hundred acres in rural North Carolina inclusive of mineral and oil/gas rights before the oil and gas company landmen start showing up... )

    ____________________
    The problems with fracking and deep pocket gas drilling plays has been in the news for a couple years.
    You do not want to invest in high pressure gas wells.
    If you look around you will read a lot of bad news.
    Earthquakes, pollution, poisons the water wells.
    Global warming equals less demand for coal and natty.
    I am a pissed off Old Dinosaur.

  18. #18
    eldondre is online now Moderator
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    "It has shown me that everything is illuminated in the light of the past"
    Jonathan Safran Foer

  19. #19
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    PA. Supreme Court jolts shale industry | Philadelphia Inquirer

    ANDREW MAYKUTH, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
    Published Thursday, December 19, 2013, 11:31 PM

    The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Thursday struck down provisions of the state's Oil and Gas Act that stripped municipalities of the power to determine where natural gas drilling activity could occur within their boundaries.

    The long-awaited decision is a blow to a 2012 law known as Act 13 that was promoted by Gov. Corbett and the Marcellus Shale natural gas industry as a means to create a uniform statewide standard for gas development.

    By a 4-2 vote, the court ruled that the zoning provisions in the law were unconstitutional, though the court disagreed on the grounds for striking down the law.

    "The bottom line is that the majority of the court agreed that Act 13 is unconstitutional, and that local governments can zone oil and gas drilling like they do other activities," said Jordan B. Yeager, a Doylestown environmental lawyer who argued the case on behalf of several municipalities.

    Corbett, Republican legislative leaders, and the Marcellus Shale Coalition, the industry trade group, called the 162-page ruling a "disappointment" in separate statements.

    [snip]
    “Guys like you I would dispatch with my roofing axe.” -- BootsywannabeACretin

  20. #20
    phillyaggie is offline Senior Member
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    Be careful what you wish for...

    coal country is seriously hurting now, and their political leaders keep pointing the blame at EPA for having anti-coal regulations. that's not so much the case, and anyway do these bozos want their electorate to die of choking or mercury poisoning, or want to continue to scar their mountains forever?

    This editorial says it all. Energy companies swoop down to pick the richest and easiest resources and will try their damn best to get to it with the least amount of money or care for long term sustainability of human life and environment in a given area. The only way around is to have very high standards of practice for everyone... Coal companies ruined whole swathes of mountain areas in WV and KY, and PA.

    And we are well on our way to allowing gas companies to do the same with tens of thousands of drill pads pock marked on Penns Woods and farms and thousands of miles of new access roads paving over even more green space, tearing up natural habitats of species, etc. And for what? We don't even have much of an employment boom with the gas industry, unlike with earlier coal. These companies will suck our milkshake from their straws, and then be off to someone else's backyard...


    Shrinking: Appalachian decline* - Editorials - The Charleston Gazette - West Virginia News and Sports -

    The business newspaper said that "two counties in Wyoming account for 40 percent of U.S. coal production." However, "coal companies say Appalachian coal has become too expensive to mine." It quoted Peabody Energy chief Greg Boyce:

    "It all comes down to geology. You've got a district [in the East] that's been mined for 100, 120 years" and inexpensive, easy-to-reach seams are depleted.

    A Washington Post analysis asked:

    "Why have Kentucky and West Virginia lost 38,000 coal jobs since 1983? For one, coal mining has become increasingly automated in recent decades, particularly as companies have shifted to techniques such as mountaintop-removal mining, which are less labor-intensive."

    Coal executives replace miners with ever-better machines, wiping out jobs and leaving families helpless. The Post added that "companies file for bankruptcy and try to shed pension and health obligations for retirees."

    Regarding the West Virginia-Kentucky field, the Appalachian Transition Initiative says:

    "Coal employment has declined from approximately 475,000 jobs at the end of World War II to only around 38,000 today. From 1973 to 2003, the region lost 62 percent of its coal jobs. Even in a significant coal producer like Harlan County, Ky., coal now makes up only 1,200 jobs in a county of 30,000 people. For Central Appalachia as a whole, coal mining is only 2 percent of direct employment."

    Cheap Marcellus Shale gas and low-sulfur Wyoming coal are grabbing energy markets, especially for power generation. While federal forecasts have varied, the Post reports that the U.S. Energy Information Agency predicts "that coal production in eastern Kentucky and West Virginia will soon be just half of what it was in 2008, plunging from 234 million tons down to 112 million tons in 2015."

    Despite all these negative market factors, most West Virginia politicians still blame coal's problems on federal pollution controls. That's misleading.
    "The only difference between the Republican and Democratic parties is the velocities with which their knees hit the floor when corporations knock on their door. That's the only difference."
    - Ralph Nader

 

 

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