Category: energy

Earth to Nick

Oblivious to toxic waste pollution and the devastation from climate change, Pennsylvania politicians continue to put frackers first! Washington County commissioners have never been shy about their diehard, all-in support of the oil and gas industry, even in the face of an endless stream… Continue Reading “Earth to Nick”

Natural Gas Widowmaker

With an increasing dependence on natural gas for electricity generation, one has to ask what this will mean to future consumer prices. Simon Casey of Bloomberg posted a story and chart yesterday, ‘Widowmaker’ Natural Gas Spread Doubles as Traders Eye Winter – “Natural gas… Continue Reading “Natural Gas Widowmaker”

One Step Forward

In a hard-fought bid to make Pennsylvania the first major fossil fuel state to adopt a carbon pricing policy, Governor Tom Wolf’s plan to fight climate change passed its last regulatory hurdle yesterday with the IRRC (Independent Regulatory Review Commission). The 3-2 party-line vote… Continue Reading “One Step Forward”

Smart Choice In Ohio

Good news out of Columbus, Ohio on Monday, concerning the decision to quit using radioactive de-icer on state roads The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) is finally acting, following lab tests that were done by the ODNR just over 4 years ago, that included… Continue Reading “Smart Choice In Ohio”

Five Dollar Electric Bill

While that sounds good, especially with heavy air conditioning use during humid 90-degree weather, it’s even better than that! We were finally able to do a full 12-month “look back” at our cost savings with solar energy, since upping our game to 29 solar… Continue Reading “Five Dollar Electric Bill”

Barium, Chloride and Strontium, Oh My!

A study published in SCIENCE (PDF) last week is said to be the first linking surface water contamination to fracking, the layman’s term for hydraulic fracturing, which is used to produce oil and gas from shale, like the Marcellus Shale which underlies a large… Continue Reading “Barium, Chloride and Strontium, Oh My!”

America’s Radioactive Secret

Justin Nobel, Science Journalist for ROLLING STONE, DeSmog, and other US magazines and investigative sites, presents his findings on the radioactivity found in oil and gas development during a Delaware Riverkeeper webinar. Begins at the 11:20 mark of video: More: TENORM: Stories on Fracking’s… Continue Reading “America’s Radioactive Secret”

Death by a Thousand Spills

Reading the weekly news of the oil and gas fracking industry in the United States reminds one of an old expression, “Death by a thousand cuts,” with the similarity being the cumulative effect of multiple smaller events. With the oil and gas industry, another… Continue Reading “Death by a Thousand Spills”

Poisoning Pennsylvania

We had yet another ‘Stuck on Stupid’ moment this week when news emerged about the use of ‘Forever Chemicals’ in hydraulic fracturing of shale oil and gas wells. Approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency! This comes on the heels of past revelations about… Continue Reading “Poisoning Pennsylvania”

Household Battery Backup

When we added the first eleven solar panels to our roof three years ago, we also added a Tesla Powerwall 2 (lithium- ion) backup battery (rated at 14 kWh) to the mix. The greatest advantage to me, is the ability of our house to… Continue Reading “Household Battery Backup”

More Frac Fluid Fears

While the oil and gas industry is attempting to rebrand some of its fracked gas as being more ‘green,’ and to spin ‘unnatural gas’ in a more positive light, yesterday’s newspaper stories reminded those of us who follow fracking of their long- running, and… Continue Reading “More Frac Fluid Fears”

Solar Energy In The Rain

It’s hard to believe that you can get a sunburn on a cloudy day, even though it’s true. Even harder to believe, is that you can produce solar energy on a rainy morning, but that’s also true! That’s right, even though it rained all… Continue Reading “Solar Energy In The Rain”

Going Solar With Large Trees

When we first landscaped our house, nearly 40 years ago, we made sure to plant a large growing Maple on the west side. That planting location came very close to the concept of planting a large deciduous tree on the southwest side of a… Continue Reading “Going Solar With Large Trees”

Extreme Heat

The dark red colors on yesterday’s weather map of the Pacific Northwest exemplified the harrowing tale of climate change, with several states and part of Canada, setting new records for extreme heat under what is called a ‘heat dome.’ One recent tweet included this… Continue Reading “Extreme Heat”

Compressor Stations

The progression of Marcellus Shale oil and gas development, processing, and export in western Pennsylvania has gone like this: 1. Seismic Surveys – Widespread exploration began with seismic surveys, that used “thumper trucks” and shot holes with explosive charges, to determine what the underground… Continue Reading “Compressor Stations”

Fracking Setbacks

As more peer- reviewed health studies are completed around unconventional gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing across the United States, more mothers, doctors, and local citizens are calling for greater setbacks from these industrial- grade activities that are used to drill and frac Marcellus Shale… Continue Reading “Fracking Setbacks”

4 Million Reasons

Our Washington County, Pennsylvania has a long, disturbing history when it comes to football field sized impoundments, 15 to 20 feet deep, which are used by the oil and gas industry to ‘hold’ their liquid waste, or should we say, are supposed to hold… Continue Reading “4 Million Reasons”

Big Solar Denied

The banner on the Mount Joy Township website, describes the township as “A Community with Rural Character and a Rich History.” Rich history refers to the Battle of Gettysburg, a famous Pennsylvania battle, 158 years ago next month, in the ‘War between the States,’… Continue Reading “Big Solar Denied”

Canada’s Best

Andrew Nikiforuk’s headline says it best, “The Brutal Legal Odyssey of Jessica Ernst Comes to an End. The Alberta landowner fought an epic battle against fracking interests.” Jessica shares her amazing story on her blog: Ernst v. EnCana Corporation. Andrew Nikiforuk knows her story… Continue Reading “Canada’s Best”

Pennsylvania Fracking Reform

Pennsylvania legislators and our Attorney General are promoting new, overdue legislation, to help protect Pennsylvanians from the drilling and fracking of the unconventional oil and gas industry. PUBLIC HERALD has been head and shoulders above the rest of the media outlets, in reporting the… Continue Reading “Pennsylvania Fracking Reform”

The Fracking Sandbox – Part 2

In my Saturday May 22 blog ‘THE FRACKING SANDBOX’ we looked at frac sand, from cradle to grave, so to speak. And on that second point, I’m not even sure I pointed out how much of this sand, contaminated by hydraulic fracturing, ends up… Continue Reading “The Fracking Sandbox – Part 2”

Returning The Favor

There was a lively debate going on in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, eight years ago, regarding the potential leasing of the DEER LAKES PARK gas rights. Concerned citizens filled the chambers of multiple Allegheny County Council meetings, in an attempt to get a ‘No’ vote… Continue Reading “Returning The Favor”

Republicans Love Fracking

A group of environmental reporters, recently polled Pennsylvania legislators, for their reactions on the results of some disturbing health studies, both past and present, regarding those citizens who live in close proximity to unconventional oil and gas well drilling and fracking, primarily in southwestern… Continue Reading “Republicans Love Fracking”

Crypto Climate Change

Who knew that the next wave of destructive mining would gobble up huge amounts of electricity, further delaying our transition from fossil fuels? Yup, Bitcoin mining. The new energy hog. For those who don’t understand how this 21st Century “mining” works, and why it… Continue Reading “Crypto Climate Change”

Fracked By Zoning

Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court will hear arguments on an important case on fracking, as it relates to residential zoning, this Monday. Those who have followed fracking closely in Pennsylvania, over the past decade, recall alarming legislation that was passed by our state legislature, known as… Continue Reading “Fracked By Zoning”

March Gladness

After two terrible months for rooftop solar energy production, it was great to see a $7.29 electric bill for March. On top of frequent and persistent snowfalls keeping our front 18 solar panels covered with snow for the first two months of 2021, solar… Continue Reading “March Gladness”

Environmental Destruction

Cut down all the trees, which helps to promote climate change, eliminate wildlife habitat, increase runoff making flooding worse, toxify millions of gallons of water while making some radioactive, pollute the air with methane and diesel truck fumes to haul-in strip mined frac sand… Continue Reading “Environmental Destruction”

Backwards Pennsylvania

Backward thinking state senators in Pennsylvania are NOT thinking about a cleaner future for Pennsylvanians… you, your kids, your grandkids. State senators like Gene Yaw(n) are working hard, to keep those of us who live in the Commonwealth, stuck in a ‘fossil-fool past.’ Yaw… Continue Reading “Backwards Pennsylvania”

Flower Power

This solar energy “flower” fascinated me the first time I saw it! It gives true meaning to the term “flower power!” The first time we saw it was on the way into a Christmas concert at Trinity High School in Washington, Pennsylvania. The solar… Continue Reading “Flower Power”

‘Free Energy’ from the Sun Keeps Getting Cheaper

99.99% Price Drop! From $76 per watt in 1977, the cost of silicon solar cells has fallen to $0.20 per watt in 2020 (full story) With the recent 2-year extension of the US Investment Tax Credit (ITC) for installing residential solar systems, your reasons… Continue Reading “‘Free Energy’ from the Sun Keeps Getting Cheaper”

Good News for Solar!

The investment tax credit (ITC) for residential solar installations has been extended 2 years! COVID-19 Stimulus Bill Includes Key Renewable Energy Tax Credits Dec. 28, 2020 -The US stimulus bill passed into law yesterday includes several key extensions and additions to the tax credits… Continue Reading “Good News for Solar!”

Ignoring Gas Patch Kids

School children are ‘Danger Close’ in Burgettstown, Pa. (Republished blog from November 5, 2019) It’s jaw-dropping to see how much infrastructure has been built by the natural gas industry over the past 15 years, all since the first Marcellus Shale well was fracked in… Continue Reading “Ignoring Gas Patch Kids”

Unsustainable Energy Waste

EarthWorks just released a new report summarizing the massive volumes of waste generated by fracking in Pennsylvania. (Republished blog from September 12, 2019) The report focuses on 8 years – 2011 through 2018. Unconventional Marcellus shale gas drilling (using high volume, slick water, hydraulic… Continue Reading “Unsustainable Energy Waste”

Solar Power with Battery Backup

Since installing our TESLA solar system and Powerwall 2, we’ve avoided 19 power outages! Most recently, our battery backup kept the power on three hours on September 30th, and fifty-five minutes on November 11th. Our past five electric bills have only been $7 to… Continue Reading “Solar Power with Battery Backup”

Fracking is Elevating Radioactivity in the Air, Land and Water

“Government Failed You” (Updated blog from December 14, 2019) The team at Public Herald, headed by Joshua B. Pribanic, has done an extraordinary job of shining a spotlight on most of the regulatory “fracking faults” in Pennsylvania, especially ones related to the Pa. Department… Continue Reading “Fracking is Elevating Radioactivity in the Air, Land and Water”

Radioactive Dumps in Pennsylvania From Fracking

Pennsylvania has become a dump for radioactive waste in landfills never designed to hold any toxic waste. Fossil Fuel Polluters and Friends Ramp Up New Attack on Solar Energy in Pa. In 2019, Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency issued its recommendation to exempt oil and gas waste… Continue Reading “Radioactive Dumps in Pennsylvania From Fracking”

Woods to Well Pad

How close is 500 feet to drilling and fracking in Pennsylvania? This close! Hard to imagine having a nicely forested area close to your home suddenly destroyed for a huge gravel well pad for industrial activities. So what’s the rub? After all, Pennsylvania requires… Continue Reading “Woods to Well Pad”

Shale Gas Drilling and Public Health

Videos of the 2019 “SHALE AND PUBLIC HEALTH” conference have been posted online here for those who weren’t able to attend. (Republished blog from December 5, 2019) The annual conference was presented by the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania with funding from the… Continue Reading “Shale Gas Drilling and Public Health”

Health Jury: Ban Fracking

“If these health effects are not due to fracking, what has changed, we couldn’t think of anything else.” Dr. Brian Schwartz (Republished blog from November 24, 2019) Over the course of several years, I’ve heard Dr. Schwartz speak at the Shale and Public Health… Continue Reading “Health Jury: Ban Fracking”

Risky Rail Shipments of LPG and LNG

A series of train wrecks has citizens concerned about public safety when it comes to increased rail shipments of LPG and LNG.