WSJ: Bakken shale oil carries high combustion risk

Following a string of explosive accidents on railcars carrying crude oil, a WSJ analysis finds that crude from North Dakota’s Bakken Shale formation contains several times more combustible gases than oil from elsewhere.

Nearly 1M bbl/day are being produced in North Dakota but with pipeline capacity unable to keep up with growth, railroads are the prime method of transporting the crude to refineries; the volatility of the crude, however, raises concerns that the cargo moving through the U.S. is more dangerous than previously believed.

Tanker cars full of oil pass through several major U.S. cities, and a repeat of what happened in last July's fatal derailment in Quebec in a densely populated area is a huge safety concern.

Among top Bakken producers: CLR, EOG, WLL, HES, KOG, OAS, XOM, MRO, STO.

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Comments (46)
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    The Shale Oil Hoax continues...
    24 Feb 2014, 10:25 AM Reply Like
  • Dan Jordet
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
    And, sending gasoline through pipelines is safe, and shipping gasoline by rail is safe, and shipping gasoline by tanker trucks is safe, and flying in a 757 loaded with umpteen thousands of gallons of jet fuel is what is the big deal other than to try shut down US production of US oil.
    24 Feb 2014, 10:46 AM Reply Like
  • Brian Bobbitt
    , contributor
    Comments (2084) | Send Message
    If the shale oil does pose a risk of explosions, then fine. A new industry of discovering how to transport it, and use it efficiently, will produce methods of handling it. A need for more jobs is born.Not all new energy sources will be as easy as digging out a lump of coal or a bucket of nice safe oil and throwing it in the fire.This is called progress gentlemen and ladies. Welcome problems, they keep us thinking.That's why I like being married. I keep finding new excuses to head for the coffee shop on Saturday morning. (Known in some circles as 'chore day'.)Capt. BrianThe Lost Navigator
    24 Feb 2014, 10:48 AM Reply Like
  • cajuncarguy
    , contributor
    Comments (20) | Send Message
    Pipelines, people, pipelines. They are already everywhere. Google a pipeline map of the USA. Safe and efficient.
    24 Feb 2014, 10:50 AM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2535) | Send Message
    cajun, most of us have natural gas lines coming directly into our homes for space heating and cooking. Pipelines are ubiquitous and generally very safe. The Manhattan Institute has analyzed petroleum product transport safety and you can see from that report that pipelines based on ton-miles of product moved are by far the safest. Your comments are very well taken.

    24 Feb 2014, 11:18 AM Reply Like
    , contributor
    Comments (60) | Send Message
    How does Flash Point of Bakken Crude compare to that of Ethanol as both are loaded into railroad tank cars?
    24 Feb 2014, 11:35 AM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message
    Contrary to the media comments


    Most people understand that the more "explosive" the oil the better and therefore will be in high demand. Out of respects for the power of gasoline and natural gas NYC restricts gasoline tankers to 3000 gallons and natural gas from tall buildings.
    24 Feb 2014, 11:47 AM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2535) | Send Message
    Here's a couple of MSDSs


    Encana for an Alberta crude


    Cenovus for a Bakken crude


    here's a Valero ethanol/gasoline blend


    Pensky Martens Closed Cup test method --


    Hard to see why anyone has an issue with flammability and flash. The railroads and pipelines have handled this type of stuff for decades. Nothing new in this so-called revelation. A good tank car is equipped with vapor recapture equipment and many tank cars can be blanketed with inert gases to remove oxygen from inside the car.
    24 Feb 2014, 12:03 PM Reply Like
  • maxiedog
    , contributor
    Comments (148) | Send Message
    It's a relatively volatile hydrocarbon. It is not tar. If a railcar crashes it will rupture and probably burn. Deal with it by instituting the correct car design standards and rail safety culture. If not... railcars will crash and burn. If close at hand then people and property will burn. The kneejerks will then commence like a Busby Berkeley musical - with attorneys as the orchestra.
    24 Feb 2014, 12:18 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message
    loved your comment
    24 Feb 2014, 12:26 PM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2535) | Send Message
    Here's a best practices manual for hauling ethanol fuels.



    ASTM method 56 Tag Closed Cup


    Fed Railroad Agency comments on proper classification of the crude;sk=
    24 Feb 2014, 12:26 PM Reply Like
  • Hendershott
    , contributor
    Comments (1784) | Send Message
    Permian/Eagle Ford has a real transportation advantage and a better price realization.
    24 Feb 2014, 12:37 PM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2535) | Send Message
    Hendershott, not for transport of Bakken to NTI or Coffeyville, or CLMT, or Chicago. That price advantage is still there for the Bakken crudes. Any refiner south of the Cushing push point is another matter however.
    24 Feb 2014, 12:57 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    Fracking is safe, they say...
    24 Feb 2014, 01:02 PM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2535) | Send Message
    mitrado he filed to stop construction of a water tower. Not the same thing.
    24 Feb 2014, 01:04 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    "Specifically, he wants to block the construction of a 160-foot water tower next to his home in Bartonville, Texas, which would provide water for nearby fracking operations."


    How easy it is to twist the whole meaning of a sentence by removing a tiny bit of it, eh!?
    24 Feb 2014, 01:25 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message


    try reading what he said versus a bias line under his picture.


    Only to illiterate's is a picture worth a thousand words.
    24 Feb 2014, 01:28 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    What bias line? I see you are all in denial:


    I have no bias 'cause I'm not invested in the sector. Can you say the same?
    24 Feb 2014, 01:34 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message
    the line under the picture states
    files law suit to stop fracking near his 100 acre horse ranch


    As he is suing about a water tower the line is bias and possibly untrue.
    I own over three hundred different securities I have no particular bias.
    As a citizen until it can be PROVEN to cause a problem, I welcome new jobs and our money staying in country.
    24 Feb 2014, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    Oh... he is just suing only over the water tower? Is he? Really? Nothing to do about fracking? Really...?


    Twist the story as you like. Deny it if you want but that doesn't change the facts:


    "Specifically, he wants to block the construction of a 160-foot water tower next to his home in Bartonville, Texas, which would provide water for nearby fracking operations."


    "As a citizen until it can be PROVEN to cause a problem, I welcome new jobs and our money staying in country." --- and there we go again. Exactly like the Tobacco industry lobby in the 70's: "It's not been proven to be harmful so it's all a sea of roses. Lets just gamble on our health and the environment over a hunch. I'm sure it will be fine."


    And yet you say you're not biased. Of course not. After all, it makes perfect sense to experiment with the environment and risk the health of billions of inhabitants without making enough studies about it. What can possibly go wrong?


    John was walking home until he saw something: "Oh, look at this beautiful mushroom! And there's no studies about it...? It must be edible, then. I'll just eat it." ... then John died.
    24 Feb 2014, 04:03 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message


    AS they say facts not in evidence neither you nor I know his real reasons.


    your doing the ASSUMING and Twisting. Maybe he doesn't care and just wants to keep his neighbors happy.


    If your speaking of tobacco use in the first hand basis every person
    you know who has died committed long term suicide. People have KNOWN of smoking problems since the early 1900's.


    You could say the same for alcohol for a certain group of the population.


    Do you think they did enough studies on nuclear power or do you think the scientists just wanted to stop Germany in the early 40's


    I love your story about John think about real life.
    a thousand years ago john was hungry and he ate the mushroom.
    Ed and Bill watched and wrote down Mushroom A killed John.


    Today ed and bill and possibly John's ancestors go in a lab feed the mushrooms to several animal species and try to see if the animals can tolerate the mushrooms.
    Main problem PETA member now sends death threats to the scientists for testing on animals


    any questions
    24 Feb 2014, 04:57 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    No questions. The difference between us is:


    - I believe some things should go through extensive studies to prove they are not harmful (to people's health and the environment) before being put in motion;
    - You believe things should be put in motion without sufficient studies and pray that nothing ever goes wrong.


    I wonder where would we all be if the FDA thought exactly like you?
    Gladly, there is still some sanity left in this world:
    24 Feb 2014, 05:08 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message


    you assume to much I do believe in testing on many level and things.
    By the way your knowledge of the FDA must be limited.
    the FDA has allowed more drugs than you can count that have had to be recalled.
    trivia question what simple drug is allowed on the market which we know will kill couple of thousand kids a year and you can get it at cvs right now.


    lets take fracking you feel that it should go through extensive studies to prove they are not harmful
    Two questions
    What would be a reasonable time for such tests and who would you trust to administer the tests?


    I await you reply.
    24 Feb 2014, 05:29 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    "What would be a reasonable time for such tests and who would you trust to administer the tests?"


    That's not up to me to decide. I'm not playing god. I'm willing to wait as long as it takes, be it 5 months, 5 years or 50 years... As long as the studies are credible and conclusive, I don't really care.


    Studies by the scientific community are currently in progress. If you cannot trust science, who can you trust?
    24 Feb 2014, 07:38 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message


    We need energy one way or the other and by the way fracking
    is from the 1860's. Yeah over 150 years ago. hydraulic fracking which is what is done today started in the late 1940's in PA.


    Credible and conclusive are you kidding me?
    Think of how many times in the last 50 years that Coffee has been studied by "scientist" and we get 100's of reports both positive and negative


    I see you choose to not answer my trivia question.
    the answer is aspirin.


    When I was in Army medic school 1969 I learned two funny things.
    1] The Doctors in the early 1900 advocate removal of the spleen as a useless organ and we now know it in charge of immune properties.
    2] the Red Cross taught stop the bleeding as the number one to do while we were taught to open the air way as the first to do.


    Next time you speak to the global warming set. ask them what percentage of co2 in man made and how much co2 comes from mother nature. Not that we are not the problem but by percentage
    mother nature produces 4 times as much as man.
    I trust science buy not paid scientist.
    I also trust history to a certain extent but as my Russian History teacher in 1964 said. You can't always trust history because it's written by the winners the losers aren't around some times to give their version.
    24 Feb 2014, 08:23 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    It's pointless to argue with you, isn't it? Due to your prejudices and clear biases, you just can't admit how wrong you are.


    If studies are that conclusive, how can you explain all of this?


    Countries with a Ban or Moratorium:


    France .
    June 30 2011: The French parliament voted to ban the controversial technique for extracting natural gas from shale rock deposits known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Oct. 4 2012: France will maintain a ban on fracking until there is proof that shale gas exploration won’t harm the environment or “massacre” the landscape, President Nicolas Sarkozy said.
    The new Minister of Ecology in Mr Hollande’s Socialist government , Ms Brick, is fiercely against fracking and the opponents of fracking are asking that Parliamentary Bill 377 be put on the top of the stack for action. .


    13th Nov 2012: The Luxembourg Parliament voted against a motion to extract underground shale gas due to concerns over the environmental impact of the process. Fracking, also known as induced hydraulic fracturing, uses fluid pressure to break open rock formations, in order to release gas or fuel trapped underground. *


    18 January 2012: Bulgaria has become the second European country after France to ban exploratory drilling for shale gas using the extraction method called “fracking”.
    Bulgarian MPs voted overwhelmingly for a ban on Wednesday, following big street protests by environmentalists.


    Bulgaria has revoked a shale gas permit granted to US energy giant Chevron.


    17th May 2012: Temporary Parliamentary Commission for study, analysis and discussion of best practices and regulatory solutions for exploration and mining has decided at its meeting today that the moratorium on exploration and extraction of shale gas has to drop some of the provisions. Environmentalists have threatened new protests.
    The Bulgarian minister of economy, Delyan Dobrev, commented on the adopted changes in the shale gas moratorium stating that ‘the moratorium shall remain, as long as the people are not properly assured that shale gas production does not pose a threat to them or the environment’.
    14th June 2012 Bulgaria’s 41st National assembly passed an Act to ban fracking in all its forms in all its territory including testing and exploration and has absolutely banned any kind of extraction using the pumping of water or gel or anything into the ground. The partial bans, and condititional moratorium was not enough for activists who succeeded in persuading the Assembly that an absolute ban was neccessary.


    May 16, 2012: In response to a petition that garnered the support of 50,000 residents concerned about the environmental impact of drilling, along with the criticism of several regional governors, Environment Minister Rovana Plumb (Social-liberal Union) has said she will propose a moratorium on shale gas exploration for up to two years until clear rules for the sector are established.


    South Africa
    South Africa’s Mining Minister Susan Shabangu has decided to extend the ban on the practice of hydraulic fracturing used to break through shale rock formations underground to tap once inaccessible gas reserves. The moratorium will last another six months, while the nation’s appointed team to investigate the safety of hydraulic ‘fracking’ continues its research.




    May 8th 2012: Germany has apparently halted plans to use fracking (hydraulic fracturing), a controversial method used to extract natural gas in difficult places to reach. According to Spiegal, Environment Minister Norbert Rottgen and Economy Minster Philipp Rosler have been sceptical of the process and have decided to oppose it for the time being. Germany


    The Czech Republic


    May 11, 2012: The Czech Republic is considering a moratorium on fracking. The moratorium would last two years ad would give the Czech environmental ministry time to determine what regulations should be in place for gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing.


    3rd September 2012 PRAGUE – The Czech government has proposed a temporary ban on shale gas exploration until a new law is passed that would address extracting the new energy source.


    Environment Minister Tomas Chalupa said Monday the current law is insufficient and a moratorium till the middle of 2014 would give authorities time to propose legislation that would “take into account the current technologies and their environmental impact.”


    The government is expected to discuss the proposal next month.


    Fracking banned by the Cinco Saltos community local government, Patagonia, Argentina….


    20/12/2012 The Five City Breaks (province of Black River) became the first municipality to ban the exploration and development of unconventional oil through the fracking technique. The ordinance was introduced by Councilman Jose Chandía Communist Party and approved unanimously.”


    VALLADOLID, July 5 (EUROPE PRESS) - Valle de Mena (Burgos) has declared the municipality “fracking free” because of the absence of “informaion and transparency” This was passed by the autonomous government against the possible exploitation and extraction of gas in the area of Great Enara, which includes the town.




    CANTABRIA – Oct 2012 - “President of Cantabria, Ignacio Diego, presented to the Governing Council a first draft of the bill to ban the use of the technique of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in the Autonomous Region for both gas extraction as in investigations which is used in practice. (….) According to Diego, Cantabria needed economic activity, “but not at any price.” In this sense, has stressed that the conclusion reached by the Cantabrian Government is the result of a study conducted “with great interest” and various technical analysis.


    The Canton of of Fribourg has banned fracking.


    August 16th 2012: The Governor of Lower Austria has called for legislative changes to be introduce to preclude the drilling for shale gas due to concerns over the potential impact of hydraulic fracturing.


    Bomba, a tiny city in the south of Italy has refused a drilling project – drilling in Pantelleria Island, between Sicily and Tunisia, has also been stopped by a governement’s decision


    Northern Ireland
    7 December 2011: Northern Ireland’s Assembly has voted for a moratorium on “fracking”, a method of extracting natural gas from shale, pending an environmental assessment. The Minster has still failed to enact the moratorium.


    May 12, 2012: Minister For Energy Pat Rabbitte has reiterated that no hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” for gas would take place in Ireland pending further “detailed scientific analysis and advice”.
    Roscommon County Council unanimously support aban on fracking
    Leitrim County Council voted for a moratorium on fracking
    Clare County Council unanimously support a ban on fracking and unanimously voted to amend the county development plan
    Donegal and Sligo: Ban on fracking
    (16-01-2012) Sligo Borough Council supports the proposal from Clare County Council and Sligo County Council calling on the Government and the Minister for Communications, Energy and natural Resources to BAN the practice of fracking/hydraulic fracturing.
    Fermanagh District Council have also voted for a moratorium on fracking.
    The United Kingdom
    The British Government has rejected shale gas technology as a solution to Britain’s energy crisis, conceding it will do little to cut bills or keep the lights on.
    Supporters of the fracking technology – which blasts water, sand and chemicals at extreme pressures to release gas trapped deep in rock – argue it could be the single greatest factor in transforming Britain’s energy market, reducing our reliance on foreign imports and dramatically reducing costs.
    But The Independent on Sunday has learned that industry experts made clear at a meeting attended by senior ministers, including David Cameron and Ed Davey, the Lib Dem energy secretary, that the UK’s reserves were smaller than first thought and could be uneconomical to extract.
    Now senior coalition figures have agreed that shale gas has the potential to be deeply controversial without securing major benefits in lowering carbon emissions or reducing energy costs.
    Keynsham Town Council have unanimously voted NO! to UK Methane’s planning application, which is a fantastic success and a big part of the puzzle.The next stage is now for B&NES Planning Committee to vote on the planning application at their Development Control Committee Meeting. Currently it is on the agenda for the 21st Nov but may be pushed back to December or maybe even January.


    The Netherlands
    A court in the southern Dutch city of Boxtel recently ruled that a temporary planning for an exploratory borehole was invalid. THe judge ruled that exploratory wells are by definition not temporary – if gas is discovered the intention is to extract it. This landmark ruling against UK fracker Cuadrilla sent shivers up the fracking industry’s spine – without the ability to secure temporary plannings it’s difficult to see how frackers can perform the exploratory testing required.




    New South Wales - Moratorium on fracking extended from Dec 2011 until July 2012, subject to ‘satisfacory’ national regulations. Ban has expired now and job adverts and notices of proposed drilling have started to be seen.


    24th August 2012 State of Victoria on Friday put a hold on hydraulic fracturing, a technique used to produce hard-to-reach gas deposits, and a halt on new coal seam gas exploration licenses.
    The moratorium would remain until a national regulatory framework for regulating coal seam gas and hydraulic fracturing was put in place by Australia’s federal government, state energy and resources minister Michael O’Brien said in a statement.


    Dunoon 11th June 2012 12:00 PM
    DUNOON is the latest Northern Rivers community to declare itself CSG- free. Dunoon is now one of several communities that have declared themselves or are in the process of declaring themselves CSG-free. Others include The Channon, Modanville, Whian Whian, Rosebank and Numulgi.


    Marrick Council in Sydney, unanimously voted on Tuesday 9/5/2012 to impose a condition prohibiting CSG mining from going ahead at the site as part of the development application.


    23rd May 2012: CANADA Bay Council has joined other inner-west Sydney councils in opposing coal seam gas mining in the area.Greens Cr Pauline Tyrrell said Dart Energy’s coal seam gas (CSG) exploration licence covered the whole of the Sydney metropolitan area, including the Canada Bay Council area. Cr Tyrrell raised a motion against CSG mining which was passed at the council meeting last week.


    June 30, 2012 at 4:55 pm The small town of Tyalgum made history today, as the first community in the Tweed Valley in NSW, to declare itself CSG free. It’s hoped other towns in the region will follow suit.


    17/02/2012 – Poowong, Victoria declared itself CSG-FREE after a poll returned 95% in favour of a ban.


    Aotearoa (New Zealand) *


    14 April 2012: “The Christchurch City Council has declared their city a ‘fracking-free zone’ in a unanimous vote this afternoon. “It is a very strong sign from the Council that we do not want fracking taking place in this city. “We hope that the strong stand we are taking is picked up by councils in other areas,” he says.”
    18 April 2012: Kaikoura District Council voted 6 to 2 to declare itself a frack-free zone ( It will be revisited after the independent investigation by Dr Jan Wright of the Parliamentary Commission for the Environment (PCE) due out at the end of the year. This resolution followed a request in February for a moratorium from Central Government until the study but that was denied.






    British Columbia
    First Nations people in NW British Columbia enacted a four year moratorium against drilling for natural gas by Royal Dutch Shell in the Sacred Headwaters. Members of the Tahltan First Nation are blockading Shell’s coal bed methane project in the Sacred Headwaters, the birthplace of the Skeena, Nass and Stikine Rivers.


    Nova Scotia
    Nova Scotia citizens call for ban on Nova Scotia fracking. Graham Hutchinson says the province should impose a moratorium on the controversial practice. The group recently presented a petition to Energy Minister Charlie Parker calling for a ban.


    March 17, 2011: Nathalie Normandeau, Quebec’s natural resources minister, announced Wednesday that the province would no longer authorize hydraulic fracturing operations in the province in the hunt for oil and gas.


    The USA


    The State of Vermont
    May 17, 2012: Vermont became the first state to ban the controversial natural gas drilling practice known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Governor Peter Shumlin signed the ban into law Wednesday afternoon.


    New Jersey, NJ
    May 17, 2012: TRENTON, N.J. - The New Jersey Legislature has accepted Gov. Chris Christie’s recommendation for a one-year ban on a natural gas drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, rather than continue to pursue a permanent ban.


    June 30, 2012 New Jersey Legislature Bans All Fracking Waste Mindful of a court ruling in 1978 striking down a law they passed banning waste disposal from other states, New Jersey legislators this week passed a new law banning all disposal of fracking wastewater within its borders, even if the waste water is produced within New Jersey. The new law is aimed at prohibiting shipment of 1.3 billion gallons of fracking waste water already generated in neighboring Pennsylvania from being shipped into New Jersey for deep well injection.
    July 15, 2012 Secaucus, NJ - bans ‘fracking’ (Local officials also call for statewide and national ban.) The mayor and Town Council banned fracking and fracking waste water in Secaucus at the June 26 council meeting in a resolution that states that the drilling process causes environmental hazards.


    Pittsburgh, Pa
    November 16, 2010: In a historic vote, the City of Pittsburgh today adopted a first-in-the-nation ordinance banning corporations from natural gas drilling in the city (Pittsburgh is finding it difficult to enact the ban because of ‘variances’ issued by the State’s Public Utilities Commission overruling their decisions)


    Morgantown, WV
    June 6th 2011: Morgantown City Council went ahead on Tuesday evening with its proposed ban on fracking concerning the drilling of Marcellus Shale. The council approved the first reading of the ordinance which would prohibit fracking in the city and within one mile of the city limits as well.
    15th August 2011: On Friday, Monongalia County Judge Susan Tucker ruled Morgantown’s ordinance to be invalid, clearing the way for Northeast to resume drilling. In the court’s opinion, Tucker said the state had exclusive control of regulation. Tucker also noted strides made by the state to implement comprehensive rules for drilling.


    North Carolina, RALEIGH 1st July 2012-- Governor Bev Perdue vetoed the controversial fracking bill Sunday, the last day she had to act before it would have become law.The governor said she supports hydraulic fracturing, also known as “fracking,” but believes additional safeguards are needed in the bill. Without those safeguards in place to protect drinking water and the health of North Carolina families, Perdue said she was forced to veto the bill.


    New York State
    New NEW YORK town bans are being passed regularly. The latest is Red Hook, NY.
    Syracuse, N.Y.


    October 24, 2011: SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse common councilors ban hydrofracking in the city.


    Woodstock enacts ban on hydrofracking - Jul 22, 2012
    The Town Board on July 17 delivered the first blow of a proposed two-punch combination aimed at banning hydrofracking in Woodstock, unanimously adopting a zoning amendment that prohibits the controversial natural-gas extraction method and related activities within the town’s borders.


    By a vote of 5-1-1, Village of Owego passed a 1-year moratorium – 31st July 2012


    20th Dec 2012 - WAWARSING, New York State – The Wawarsing Town Board is the latest to adopt a ban on hydro-fracking to extract natural gas from shale formations.
    The unanimous vote came Thursday night. A public hearing was held prior to the vote with no one supporting the process.


    Animated film of bans, moratoriums and groups in New York State





    • Two legislative bills on hydrofrack drilling were considered by the legislature. The Assembly passed an extension of the current moratorium through June of 2012. The Senate did not act on a parallel bill and the issue is closed for the present.


    • NYS Executive Order calling for a drilling moratorium by former Governor Paterson has been affirmed by Governor Cuomo.


    • Yates County resolution unanimously passed calls for similar protection treatment of their watershed as that in NYC and Syracuse watersheds.


    • The Town of Jerusalem (Yates) enacted a moratorium ordinance for their entire township. The one-year moratorium begins when the Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS) relating to the extraction of natural gas by the process of high-volume hydraulic fracturing now under review by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is finalized.


    • The Town of Milo is drawing up a moratorium statement for board action.


    • Dewitt, Tully, Marcellus and Skaneateles have enacted moratoria laws.


    • Highland, (Sullivan Co) is developing a moratorium statement.


    • Buffalo has banned hydrofrack drilling and wastewater disposal in their city.


    • Sullivan County is the first county in New York State to enact a moratorium.


    • Lumberland (Sullivan Co) is considering a moratorium statement.


    • Town of Ulysses is establishing “industrial zones” attempting to restrict the negative impact of drilling in their water supply.


    • Tompkins County has enacted a ban on fracking on county land.


    • Broome County: Ban on hydrofracking on county lands. Waste restrictions for fracking cuttings and flow back water established.


    • Ontario, Sullivan and Onondaga Counties have enacted bans on fracking on county owned land.


    • Ulster County has banned hydrofrack drilling on county owned lands.


    • Gorham in Ontario County enacted a moratorium ordinance.


    • The towns that ring Cooperstown’s reservoir, Otsego Lake — Middlefield, Otsego, Butternuts, and Cherry Valley — are moving to ban or restrict natural gas drilling and high-volume hydraulic fracturing.


    • Springfield has adopted local laws prohibiting heavy industry, including gas drilling.


    • The Medical Society of the State of New York has gone on record supporting a moratorium on gas drilling using high volume hydraulic fracturing.


    • Cooperstown’s Chamber of Commerce has issued a position statement supporting a total ban on fracking due to the impact it will make on their watershed, farming and tourism.


    • A group of residents have launched a petition drive designed to ban the use of high-volume, slick water hydraulic fracturing in the Town of Caroline, Tompkins County.


    • The Village of Penn Yan will not accept any hydrofracking wastewater for processing at the village wastewater treatment plant.


    • New York City has called on the US Congress to remove hydrofrack drilling’s exemption from the Safe Water Drinking Act.


    • The Skaneateles Town Board has initiated plans for a ban in their township.


    • The Otsego County Planning Board approved changes to Middlefield’s master plan and zoning law that would specifically prohibit heavy industry, including gas and oil drilling.


    • The Board of Trustees of Bassett Medical Center, based in Cooperstown, New York, views the issue of hydrofracking as a public health issue of the highest priorityand resolves that the hydrofracking method of gas drilling constitutes an unacceptable threat to the health of patients, and should be prohibited until such time as it is proven to be safe.


    • A consortium of interested citizens is planning for a unified moratorium and eventual ban of hydrofrack drilling in the entire Keuka Lake watershed region. To date the towns of Barrington, Milo and Jerusalem have adopted ordinances on a moratorium. Wayne has prepared a resolution for consideration.


    • Lebanon town board members adopted a memorializing resolution that calls on the New York State Legislature and Governor Andrew Cuomo to repeal and reform compulsory integration laws in the State of New York that currently govern natural gas development.


    • A petition drive has resulted in the Dryden Town Board unanimously passing a resolution to move forward with an ordinance to ban fracking.


    • The Croton Watershed Clean Water Coalition, Inc. has sued the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) in New York State Supreme Court to declare High Volume Horizontal Hydraulic Fracturing in New York State Forests contrary to the New York State Constitution and applicable environmental laws.


    • The Otsego Town Board clarified a long-standing prohibition against heavy industry, including fracking for natural gas, in the town’s land use law. By this vote the town, which includes most of the Village of Cooperstown, reaffirmed its home rule right to prohibit drilling through local ordinance. They also approved revisions to its land-use law that strengthen a ban on gas drilling and hydrofracking within the town. The law now specifies that while the removal of gravel, rock, stone, sand, fill, topsoil or “unconsolidated” minerals has been allowed, extraction of natural gas and petroleum is not permitted.


    • The Common Council of Oneonta voted to ban all forms of natural gas drilling in city limits.


    • The Town of Wales adopted a community rights ordinance that bans “fracking.” The ordinance establishes a Bill of Rights for Wales residents and “recognizes and secures certain civil and political rights of the residents to govern themselves and protect themselves from harm to their persons, property and environment.”


    • The exploration of land for natural gas by horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing is prohibited in the Town of Camillus.


    • Brighton became the first municipality in Monroe County to take a position on hydrofrack drilling calling for a state-wide moratorium.


    • Kirkland has adopted a one-year moratorium on hydrofracking.


    • New Hartford has adopted a six-month moratorium on hydrofrack drilling for natural gas


    • October 24, 2011: SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse common councilors ban hydrofracking in the city.




    August 14th 2012 Saint Johnsville Village, NY, USA unanimously passed a one year moratorium on hydrofracking and its related activities.


    Buffalo, NY
    Feb 8, 2011 6: The City of Buffalo, New York, banned the natural gas drilling technique of hydraulic fracturing on Tuesday, a largely symbolic vote that demonstrates concern about potential harm to groundwater from mining an abundant energy source.The city council voted 9-0 to prohibit natural gas extraction including the process known as “fracking” in which chemicals, sand and water are blasted deep into the earth.
    Albany, NY (Capitol of NYS) banned hydraulic fracturing within the city limits of the City of Albany in May, 2012. Mayor Jennings didn’t veto it.
    Sept 2012 The Rochester Town Board voted to ban hydraulic fracturing at its August 30 meeting, to the applause of a town hall packed with residents eager for the decision. Although passing the ban was one of the first things the board did that evening, celebrants were still toasting with champagne in the town hall parking lot when the meeting adjourned over an hour later.
    The town joins an estimated 35 that have passed an outright ban on the controversial gas-mining practice in the state. A hundred other municipalities have moratoria in place while they study the issue, and 60 more have passed resolutions either in support of the practice, or opposing a statewide ban. Governor Cuomo is expected to announce a decision on whether it will be permitted in New York State or not in the very near future.




    In February, the legislature passed Act 13, which eliminated local zoning for natural gas operations, which include drilling, compressor stations and pipelines. Passed with support of Republican lawmakers from the Southeast, Act 13 was hailed by the governor, lawmakers and the natural gas industry as crucial because it provided uniformity and consistency for developing shale gas drilling policy.


    Effectively, this has deprived all the communities from having any power to protect themeselves from the rape of their land, posioning of their water, and harm to people, animals and crops.


    Pittsburgh adopts the first-in-the-nation community rights ordinance which elevates the right of the community to decide, and the rights of nature over the “rights” associated with corporate personhood. The City Council unanimously adopted this ordinance banning corporations from conducting natural gas drilling in the city.
    •Lehman Township in Luzerne County PA NEVER passed a moratorium or ban, the township supervisors voted down CELDF ordinance to protect and preserve township land and water.
    The Board of Supervisors for Licking Township, Clarion County, PA, voted unanimously on Wednesday to adopt an ordinance banning corporations from dumping “fracking” waste water in the township. The Licking Township Community Water Rights and Self-Government Ordinance is the first ordinance of its kind adopted in Pennsylvania to confront the threat of Marcellus Shale drilling.
    Cresson has enacted legislation banning fracking.
    Washington Township has banned fracking.
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania City Council unanimously passed the pro-moratorium Resolution on Marcellus Shale Drilling Environmental and Economic Impacts.
    The Borough Council of West Homestead, Pennsylvania, unanimously adopted an ordinance that enacts a Local Bill of Rights, along with a prohibition on natural gas extraction to protect those rights. The bill, titled “West Homestead Borough’s Community Protection from Natural Gas Extraction Ordinance; establishes specific rights of West Homestead residents, including the Right to Water, the Rights of Natural Communities, the Right to a Sustainable Energy Future, and the Right to Community Self-Government.
    Philadelphia refuses to purchase Marcellus Shale gas as the dumping of flow back waters is polluting their water supply.
    Collier Township upgraded its natural gas drilling ordinance to enhance their Marcellus Shale ordinance that would push drillers farther away from schools and provide baseline measurements for noise levels at drilling sites.
    United Methodists representing 950 churches across central and Northeast Pennsylvania passed a resolution calling for a temporary halt in gas well drilling in the Marcellus Shale as well as an impact tax on those places where drilling already has taken hold.
    Religious groups such as the Sisters of Saint Francis of Philadelphia have advocated against fracking and in April, 2011, America, the national magazine of the Jesuits editorialized very critically about the process.


    Baldwin Borough Council adopted a community rights ordinance that bans the corporate extraction of natural gas.


    30th June 2012 Legislators Pass Moratorium on Gas Drilling in Bucks, MontCo The provision was attached to a state budget measure which lawmakers approved late Saturday night. Companies that want to drill for natural gas in Bucks or Montgomery counties will have to wait. State lawmakers on Saturday night approved a moratorium on gas drilling in Bucks, MontCo and parts of Lehigh, Berks and Chester counties. The moratorium will affect any oil or gas operations in the South Newark Basin, which underlies a swath of territory extending from Bucks through MontCo and into Berks County.




    • A class-action lawsuit has been filed against companies that drill for natural gas in central Arkansas. The suit is asking for millions of dollars in relation to the earthquakes associated with the fracking process the companies use. The damages enumerated in the suit are property damage, loss of fair market value in real estate, emotional distress, and damages related to the purchase of earthquake insurance.


    Arkansas has a ban on 4 out of more than 500 frack fluid waste-water injection wells because of their 4.7/9 earthquake.




    • The first community in Maryland, Mountain Lake Park, adopted an ordinance banning corporations from natural gas drilling.


    • Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler has sent a letter to Chesapeake Energy Corporation and its affiliates, notifying the companies of the State of Maryland’s intent to sue for violating the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and the Clean Water Act (CWA).


    • Governor Martin O’Malleyhas signed an executive order for a three year moratorium on drilling in MD while studies continue.


    New Jersey


    • The New Jersey Assembly voted to ban hydraulic fracturing in NJ in a bipartisan overwhelming vote (58 to 11, 8 abstained), following the landslide vote 32-1 earlier in the day by the NJ Senate. New Jersey is the first state legislature to ban fracking.




    • 22nd August 2012: Wellsburg City Council approved an ordinance prohibiting natural gas drilling in or within one mile of the city as concerns mounted about the city’s water being contaminated by procedures in hydrofrack drilling. A reservoir serving the city is beside property that Chesapeake Energy is leasing for drilling.


    A pair of proposed deep brine injection wells in Weathersfield Township got the attention of residents and trustees. Now, opposition is growing next door in Niles. “The property’s adjacent right to Niles, also it’s five blocks from downtown so we’re very concerned,” Niles Mayor Ralph Infante said. Niles joined Weathersfield Township trustees on Wednesday, passing a resolution to ban all injection wells in the city and township. That includes the proposed site off state Route 169 next to Niles Commerce Park.


    28th August 2012 - Jefferson twp in Crawford county passed an extraction and injection well resolution banning fracking activity in the township


    On Oct. 1, 2012, the Yellow Springs Village Council voted 3-2 to adopt a Community Bill of Rights ordinance banning corporations from conducting shale gas drilling and related activities in the village.
    The ordinance was drafted by the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) at the invitation of the community group Gas and Oil Drilling Awareness and Education (GODAE), a group of citizens concerned about the potential effects of gas and oil drilling on the environment.


    Yellow Springs is the first municipality in the state of Ohio to enact a local Bill of Rights and protect those rights by prohibiting shale gas drilling and fracking and the ensuing injection wells. The first of its kind in Ohio local law asserts the fundamental rights of residents to clean air and water, and to protect the rights of nature.




    • George Washington National Forest has disallowed horizontal drilling for natural gas within its 1.1 million acres of territory while opening up segments of the forest to the potential for wind energy construction.




    • Texas Gov. Rick Perry has signed a bill requiring drillers to publicly disclose the chemicals they use when extracting oil and gas from dense rock formations, the first state to pass such a law.


    Moratorium in the city of Grand Prairie, TX (a suburb of Dallas) until January 2013 on drilling activities within 3,000 feet of water retention structures. It’s been called potentially catastrophic by the United States Army Corps of Engineers. Chesapeake and XTO placed the community in jeopardy by already drilling and fracking in very close proximity to the local Joe Pool Dam. Right hand did not know what the left was doing….it’s a mess.


    West Virginia


    • Wellsville has banned fracking.


    • Lewisburg has banned fracking within their city limits.


    • Morgantown banned fracking in the city and within one mile of the city limits as well.


    8 April 2012: Kaikoura District Council voted 6 to 2 to declare itself a frack-free zone ( It will be revisited after the independent investigation by Dr Jan Wright of the Parliamentary Commission for the Environment (PCE) due out at the end of the year. This resolution followed a request in February for a moratorium from Central Government until the study but that was denied.




    WAUKON, Iowa (WXOW) – There will be no frac sand mining in Allamakee County. The county passed an 18-month moratorium Monday 4th February 2013. Frac sand is becoming a hot commodity because it’s being widely used in a process called hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” to extract natural gas in other parts of the country.
    24 Feb 2014, 08:41 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message
    I guess you nickname in Spanish is prelate so you decided to pontificate


    It was wonderful to see so many want to test after 60 years of being used. Gee the EPA said it contaminated water only to be proven wrong and had to amend it findings(like FDA DOES all the time) Half of your sources who passed rules on fracking do not have
    the statutory authority one example from my old home state
    August 14th 2012 Saint Johnsville Village, NY, USA unanimously passed a one year moratorium on hydrofracking and its related activities. Also Cuomo is now scared of what he did because its has been brought to his attention the state may be liable under the Scouts decision of corp of engineers vs the landowners in Georgia.
    He's hoping they can prove the fracking claims because without proof you can't ban anything on assuptions just like you can't stop a book before publication.
    24 Feb 2014, 09:01 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message
    • The New Jersey Assembly voted to ban hydraulic fracturing in NJ in a bipartisan overwhelming vote (58 to 11, 8 abstained), following the landslide vote 32-1 earlier in the day by the NJ Senate. New Jersey is the first state legislature to ban fracking.


    24 Feb 2014, 10:25 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (2033) | Send Message
    You're still trying to defend your undefendable position?


    I guess we have to agree to disagree. It's impossible to argue with someone like you, who keeps denying the obvious, who refuses to think with logic and reason and prefers to make decisions based on nothing but hunches.


    Good luck with your gambling. Yes, you've read it right: gambling. Why? Because someone who reasons with his gut and not his brain will never be able to invest, but only gamble.


    I'll stop wasting my time with someone who thinks he already knows everything and is totally incapable of admitting when he's dead wrong. Goodbye.
    25 Feb 2014, 03:17 AM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message






    The first community recycling center in Queens(a Borough in NYC)
    in 1971 was the Newtown association of which I was a member.


    I must be one of the best gamblers in the world as I have become a multimillionaire and because of being drafted out of college in 1968 I have only a HS diploma
    25 Feb 2014, 09:05 AM Reply Like
  • Kim Feil
    , contributor
    Comments (9) | Send Message
    if co2 is out of natural balance due to man...then man must cut the same co2 amt of that in nature...or not mess with that balance
    15 May 2014, 12:30 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message


    YOU SHOULD send your post to China and Brazil. here in the states we compensate with trees and greens.
    15 May 2014, 06:34 PM Reply Like
  • schhtick
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
    Seems to me that we should be looking at the rail-car manufacturers as a potential derivative play.
    24 Feb 2014, 01:18 PM Reply Like
  • pbundy
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    Why not build a refinery in the Bakken region so you don't have to transport it anywhere, might even lower the price of gas down alittle.
    24 Feb 2014, 01:18 PM Reply Like
  • Holthusen
    , contributor
    Comments (701) | Send Message
    If you look at the problems TransCanada has had with a simple Pipeline, imagine the problems building a Greenfield Refinery! A large new refinery has not been built in the USA in over 30 yrs because of all the new regulations. I think you also need Robert Redfords personal approval.


    CLMT is about to open a small new diesel refinery in ND (50,000 bbls/day) but that is the only new one I've heard of.


    24 Feb 2014, 02:12 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message


    Marathon oil built a new refinery on property next to their old refinery that went on line in 2010. Old reports called it new then it was changed to be an expansion. it more than doubled the sites output.
    24 Feb 2014, 02:18 PM Reply Like
  • Holthusen
    , contributor
    Comments (701) | Send Message
    I remember the announcement of the "addition." You are right it was NEW, but Marathon got all permits waived by claiming it was just an "Addition" to an existing plant. I should have backed up the truck on that years ago but at that time we were importing refined products cheaper than "home-made." Marathon was smart, they saw the future of the barges of Bakken Oil comin down de river!
    16 May 2014, 10:22 AM Reply Like
  • Diggerdugit
    , contributor
    Comments (79) | Send Message
    The environmental folks would never allow for another refinery to be built. In the Bakken or anywhere else, but I have got to admit it is a good idea worth looking into. But, bet the farm--that BO won't approve it.
    24 Feb 2014, 01:34 PM Reply Like
  • outofhere
    , contributor
    Comments (3694) | Send Message
    CLMT is building a refinery to open next year in ND.
    24 Feb 2014, 02:04 PM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2535) | Send Message
    You can see all the US refiners here.

    24 Feb 2014, 01:46 PM Reply Like
  • Cliff Hilton
    , contributor
    Comments (2823) | Send Message
    Ok. So you build a refinery there in the Bakken. You now transport something that contains 21,000 BTU per pounds.


    Let the rail and pipeline bring it to us southeast Texans to refine, we have plenty of capacity.
    24 Feb 2014, 01:53 PM Reply Like
  • evan.prospect
    , contributor
    Comments (704) | Send Message
    I saw an article the other day that Buffett is going to be buying the most reinforced rail cars to deal with the negative publicity. Since the Junior Senator from Illinois eats out of his hand, Buffett must know that he won't sign off on the Keystone pipeline so his investment should be safe until at least February 2017 when the new prez takes over?
    24 Feb 2014, 02:00 PM Reply Like
  • saratogahawk
    , contributor
    Comments (2535) | Send Message
    Buffet is buying more than 5000 state of the art tanker cars. I believe this is the largest ever investment by a railroad in tanker cars. Most tankers are owned by leasing companies and the individual product owner. Sure suggests that Buffet thinks rail will be handling a significant % of crude shipment.
    24 Feb 2014, 02:14 PM Reply Like
  • kodiak cowboy
    , contributor
    Comments (84) | Send Message
    Old news. It's not the tanker car, it's the railroads for lack of safety. How can they have 2 trains in opposite directions scheduled on the same track? It's not the arrow it's the indian. Nobody ever wants to admit blame.
    24 Feb 2014, 04:41 PM Reply Like
  • solojif
    , contributor
    Comments (133) | Send Message
    The gasoline hauled to your local gas station is 10x's more flamable then Bakken Crude. Most people don't even properly store fuel or chemicals in there garage.
    25 Feb 2014, 05:42 AM Reply Like
  • comsense8
    , contributor
    Comments (25) | Send Message
    Energy drives industry. Hydrocarbons are the core of everything we do and we will be a long time finding a substitute for them. Our economy thrives on over 20 mbl per day. Politicians do not produce anything.
    2 Mar 2014, 09:28 PM Reply Like
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