Contains the keyword press

Homeland Security in Cahoots with Fracking Gas Corporations, Piette, Betsey , Workers World, (2010)


Evidence that Pennsylvania’s Department of Homeland Security is working on behalf of the natural gas industry came to light in early September when internal department bulletins were leaked to an anti-drilling listserve. The department had contracted an Israeli-linked agency to spy on anti-drilling activists.

The story was later leaked to reporters at Pro Publica and the City Paper. These papers’ articles suggested a direct connection between the state agency and the natural gas industry. The exposure fueled outrage from targeted groups.

Gov. Ed Rendell had to retreat. On Sept. 14, he held a press conference to apologize to groups who had been monitored. “Protesting is not a threat, it’s an American right,” said Rendell. He said he was “appalled” and announced that the state would not renew its $125,000 no-bid contract with the Institute of Terrorism Research and Response, set to expire in October.

See: Pa. Governor Apologizes for Tracking Enviro Extremists, but Questions Remain - ProPublica

See: Know Your Enemy | John Cole Cartoons

Land Board approves Otter Creek coal lease, Dennison, Mike , Billings Gazette, (2010)


Mike Dennison. March 18, 2010. Billings Gazette.

"The state Land Board, undeterred by anti-mining protesters who disrupted the board’s Helena meeting for 45 minutes until they were arrested, voted 3-2 Thursday to approve leasing 570 million tons of state-owned coal for development of a mine in southeastern Montana’s Otter Creek Valley.

The vote by the five-member Land Board approved an $85.8 million up-front bid on the coal by Arch Coal Inc., giving the St. Louis-based mining giant a 10-year window to develop a mine in the pristine valley 150 miles east of Billings.

Gov. Brian Schweitzer, who voted for leasing the coal, extolled the long-term economic benefits of a new coal mine in the valley, saying it would bring $5 billion in tax revenue and royalties over the life of a mine and approximately $250 million a year once the mine is operating...

...The vote came after five protesters disrupted the meeting by chanting “Hands off Otter Creek — you’re not listening!” as McCulloch made a motion to vote to approve the lease.

The protesters, who had been sitting in the front row of chairs in the packed meeting room, stood and then linked arms as they sat on the floor, chanting, about 20 feet from the board members.

Schweitzer recessed the meeting and Helena Police officers ordered the room cleared, as they waited for other officers to arrive and assist with arresting the protesters. About 45 minutes later, police had handcuffed and arrested the protesters and taken them to the Lewis and Clark County jail to book them on misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct."


Genevieve Schroder is removed from the State Land Board meeting Thursday in the Capitol. Schroder and four other Missoula residents were arrested after protesting the leasing of the state-owned Otter Creek coal. (Courtesy photo)
Natural Gas Industry Shills Use the Media to Mislead the Public - Here's How to Spot Them, Stephens, Maura , t r u t h o u t, (2010)


Truthout is a source of independent journalism focusing on under-covered issues and uncoventional thinking.

In papers everywhere we hear arguments such as the one that appeared recently in the Rochester (NY) Business Journal, in an article by economist Raymond J. Keating, under the heading "N.Y. is missing out on economic opportunity."

Keating wrote, "Environmentalists are claiming that hydraulic fracturing threatens groundwater supplies and are using anecdotal evidence to support their claims. Yet years of evidence have demonstrated that the fracking process is safe."

This is not just misleading; it's artful misuse of the language. Or, as my mother would have put it in her habitually blunt way, it's a lie...

...If they have nothing to hide, and there is no danger, why do they keep the ingredients of their toxic fracking stews a secret? Why does the public not know what's in them? How can Keating or anyone else claim it's "safe" if we don't know what they're using? Do we want New York to be the next Gulf? Do we want to just trust the drilling companies to do the right thing, as we seemed to trust BP to manage a spill without adverse consequences?

Furthermore, do New Yorkers want their beautiful state turned into an industrial zone, a la eastern Colorado, huge swaths of Wyoming, much of Texas and Louisiana, and West Virginia? Take a drive to Northeastern Pennsylvania and see what the countryside looks like just a few years after horizontal fracking began there.

Well over half of these United States are in peril from fracking. This is simply nuts. It's not a local or regional, but a national issue (international now, as big gas deposits have been located, and in some cases are already being developed, in Poland, Austria, Hungary, Sweden, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, in Canada, China, and India. (Japan and other countries are buying into gas-drilling rights in the USA and elsewhere.)

See: Global Gas Flaring Identification in Google Earth

See: World of Shale

See: France to Unlock “Dirty” Oil Under Paris With Texan Help

See: Worlds Collide at Cancun Climate Talks

New WVU-Va Tech study links water quality and cancer deaths in West Virginia coalfields, Ward, Jr., Ken , The Charleston Gazette | Coal Tattoo, Charleston, WV, (2010)



West Virginians who live near streams polluted by coal mining are more likely to die of cancer, according to a first-of-its kind study published by researchers at West Virginia University and Virginia Tech.

The study provides the first peer-reviewed look at the relationship between the biological health of Appalachian streams and public health of coalfield residents.

See: Ken Ward Jr. "Breaking news: EPA vetoes Spruce Mine permit." Coal Tattoo. Jan. 13, 2011.

See: Mixplex | EPA in the Crosshairs.

See: Lisa P. Jackson, EPA (lisapjackson) on Twitter.

See: Nathaniel P Hitt. U.S. Geological Survey, Eastern Region, Northeast Area, Biology Discipline.

Newsweek Greenwashes the Oil Lobby for Real, O'Grady, Candice , FAIR (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting), (2010)


February 2010 issue concentrates on major media environmental journalism.

In a memo leaked this summer from the Institute to its members, which its website boasts range from “the largest major oil company to the smallest of independents,” the trade organization’s CEO urged “oil companies to recruit their employees for events that will ‘put a human face on the impacts of unsound energy policy,’

...At the same time as they talk big about going green, the oil barons have waged highly organized disinformation campaigns going back decades to prevent legislative efforts to combat climate change (Mother Jones, 5–6/05). This fall, blogger Zachary Roth (TPMMuckraker, 11/4/09) noted that the American Petroleum Institute “has been a key opponent of serious efforts to address climate change, spending over $3 million lobbying on the Waxman-Markey climate change bill this year.” [The bill was approved by the House of Representatives on June 26, 2009 by a vote of 219-212]

According to the Sourcewatch article on the Bill, Brent Blackwelder, president of Friends of the Earth, praised the efforts by Waxman, Markey, and others to develop global warming legislation, but added that the bill had been "corrupted by members of Congress backed by oil and coal interests."

See: Ken Ward Jr., "Waxman-Markey update: A global warming crossroads?" Coal Tattoo, May 18, 2009.

Onshore Drilling Disasters Waiting to Happen: An Interview With 'Gasland' Director Josh Fox | The Nation, Eisenberg, Nora , The Nation, (2010)



Photo: WBAI | Law and Disorder Radio. March 16, 2009.

Theater and film director Josh Fox's documentary Gasland explores the new generation of natural gas drilling, which for a decade has been blasting its way east across the country, tapping shale formations from the Rockies to Pennsylvania, and is now expanding in New York.

Fox is only 37, but he is a veteran explorer of complex themes from militarism to war to globalization and torture who skillfully blends artistry and social message. Gasland is more straightforward than Fox's earlier experimental mixes of theater, dance, music and film, but no less striking.

Nora Eisenberg holds a PhD from Columbia University in English and Comparative Literature and directs the City University of New York's Faculty Fellowship Publication Program for emerging scholars.

Ozone raises its ugly head in rural Utah, Fahys, Judy , The Salt Lake Tribune, (2010)


People who visited eastern Utah’s vast open spaces last winter might have thought they were doing their lungs a big favor by taking a deep breath of fresh, country air. But it turns out, they would have been better off going to Los Angeles or most other major cities.

According to new air-pollution data, breathing air around the oil and gas fields of the remote Uinta Basin was “unhealthy” on 40 days this past winter.

The problem was on par with the worst summertime ozone tracked by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the nation’s most polluted place, San Bernardino County, Calif. In addition, Uintah County’s ozone topped the worst high-ozone days in Salt Lake City and even industrial hubs such as Houston and Los Angeles.

See: The Case for a Truth and Reconciliation Commission on Toxic Hazards

See: Fracking: Implications for Human and Environmental Health

See: Our Stolen Future: Are We Threatening Our Fertility, Intelligence, and Survival?--A Scientific Detective Story

See: Living Downstream: An Ecologist's Personal Investigation of Cancer and the Environment

PBS | Need to Know, Leonard, Abby, and Kennedy Lucy ,, (2010)


Some say the controversial method of extracting natural gas known hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is polluting their water. Regulators said they had no jurisdiction on the Fento Land.

Watch the individual segments:

The Price of Gas


In collaboration with ProPublica, Need to Know correspondent John Larson investigated the practice of fracking, which some Wyoming residents said, was polluting their water.

PBS Editor’s note: This video was temporarily taken off the site to reconfirm past and current energy industry affiliations of members of an EPA peer review panel. We determined that our original reporting and statements were accurate, but to avoid confusion about the members’ current affiliations, a graphic listing their names was removed with accompanying narration.

Pennsylvania Gas Drillers Dumping Radioactive Waste in New York, Mantius, Peter , DC Bureau | Bulldog Blog, (2010)



Trucks hauling rock cuttings from drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Shale formation in Pennsylvania regularly cross the New York State border these days to dump in the Chemung County Landfill seven miles east of Elmira.

The Marcellus formation is characterized by unusually high readings of naturally occurring radioactive material, or NORM, so most of the cuttings are probably radioactive. The Chemung Landfill, a former gravel pit, has never been licensed to handle low-level radioactive waste.

So how can the landfill’s private operators get clearance from the county and state environmental regulators to bethcome a regional dump for radioactive drilling wastes?

The short answer: Provide the revenue-hungry county a rich payout, exploit a legal loophole, and presto, it’s a done deal.

The longer answer: Regulations haven’t kept pace with the recent widespread use of an invasive new drilling technology used to tap the Marcellus.

“There are many aspects of this new industrial activity that outpace existing regs. Radiological regulation is just one of them,” said Anthony Ingraffea, a Cornell University geology professor who has tracked the evolution of natural gas drilling for decades.