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fracking

UTSA, Southwest Research find a new way to clean frack water

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The University of Texas at San Antonio and the Southwest Research Institute say they have found an inexpensive way to treat the water that flows back to the surface after hydraulic fracturing. A team of researchers used a plant matter called biochar to remove impurities from the flowback water.
(courtesy photo)

Guest commentary: Offshore is next target for environmentalists

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Guest commentary: There is still time for the industry to take back control of the online narrative before activists chip away at the 68 percent of Americans who currently support offshore oil and gas drilling.
This photo taken on Sunday, Aug. 17, 2014, and provided by Robert A. Franco, shows a billboard in Coshocton, Ohio opposing deep-injection wells . Michael Boals, an Ohio man who uses a biblical reference and a statement against “poisoned waters” on billboards opposing local deep-injection wells is fighting a legal threat from the Texas well owner on grounds he’s exercising his free speech. (AP Photo/Robert A. Franco)

Anti-fracking billboards in Ohio coming down

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An Ohio man who uses a biblical reference and a statement against “poisoned waters” in billboards opposing the disposal of gas-drilling wastewater says the messages will come down Tuesday.
(Source/World Resources Institute)

Water resources a problem for energy extraction worldwide, report finds

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According to the analysis by the World Resources Institute, 38 percent of the earth’s shale gas and tight oil resources are in areas that are either arid or under high levels of water stress already _ a scenario that does not mesh with the high water demands of today’s extraction techniques.
Minsu Cha, research professor, Department of Civil Engineering and Petroleum Engineering at the Colorado School of Mines, works to set up an experiment to test the use of liquid nitrogen for hydraulic fracturing on Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014, in Golden, Colo. ( Brett Coomer / Houston Chronicle )

Researchers at work on using liquid nitrogen instead of water in fracturing

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Petroleum engineers in Colorado are working on a process called cryogenic fracturing, which replaces water with searing cold liquid nitrogen or liquid carbon dioxide.
Rail tank cars are seen on tracks behind new homes under construction in the Cottage Grove area on Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014, in Houston. Transport of crude oil by rail has become increasingly common, raising safety concerns after a series of derailments around the country. ( Smiley N. Pool / Houston Chronicle )

Crude oil rides Texas’ rails with little tracking

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For generations of producers drillers in Texas, where a vast pipeline system has grown with the fits and starts of the oil industry’s notorious business cycle, railroads provided little more than a relatively expensive last resort. But in the boom associated with the hydraulic fracturing, producers increasingly enlist trains to handle the glut.
A natural gas drilling site in the Barnett Shale. (AP file photo/Donna McWilliam)

Study finds more arsenic in north Texas water wells near drilling

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In the study, University of Texas at Arlington biochemists measured 100 wells across the Barnett Shale, believed to hold one of the largest natural gas reserves in the U.S., and compared the results to a similar study undertaken before hydraulic fracturing technology and higher natural gas prices opened the area to drilling.
Pictured is a hydraulic fracturing operation in the Permian Basin that took place on Oct. 1, 2012. Apache is an active driller in the Permian Basin and during the quarter averaged 35 rigs drilling 201 wells of which 26 were horizontal. (Apache)

Feds advance hydraulic fracturing rule

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The Obama administration is on track to impose new mandates governing hydraulic fracturing on public land by the end of the year, a move that threatens to topple the White House’s delicate balancing act assuaging worried environmentalists while still sustaining a domestic drilling boom that is bolstering the U.S. economy.

Illinois state agency issues fracturing rules

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he lengthy report follows months of delays and complaints over the process to draft rules governing hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in Illinois. Industry officials say southern Illinois has rich deposits of natural gas, but a final draft of the rules — initially touted as a national model of both sides working together — has taken months for the agency to produce as industry groups warned the state was losing business.

Feds to resume leasing for fracturing in California

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The move will end a halt that has stood since a federal judge ruled in 2013 that the federal agency failed to follow environmental law in allowing fracking on public land in Monterey County.