fracking

How Did Alaska Avoid the Resource Curse? Can Anyone Else Do So?

Dan made a useful point the other day about the possibility that increased energy production could yield a resource curse, i.e. an increase in unproductive and oligarchical rent-seeking when an economy becomes based upon resource extraction.  One might add that this rent-seeking also tends to underdevelop a country’s human capital, as it has in Saudi …

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Fracking Lawsuit Filed in California Against State Agency

Earthjustice filed a lawsuit two days ago in Alameda County Superior Court on behalf of four environmental plaintiffs charging that the California Department of Conservation, Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) has failed to consider or evaluate the risks of fracking, as required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Plaintiffs — the …

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Fracking, Methane, and Moving Toward Better Data Through Collaboration

Is using natural gas produced through fracking better for the environment than using coal?  The answer is an unqualified maybe .  That’s because we don’t have good enough data to  know definitively.  But a  new collaboration between academics, the fracking industry and environmentalists aims to fill the data gap. First, some background. The boom in …

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Golden Rules for Fracking

Well, this is embarrassing.  Kevin Drum, one of the best bloggers out there, posted a few days ago on the issue of whether hydraulic fracturing is good or bad for the environment.  Kevin covers the ground that we have here before, namely: Yes, natural gas is better than coal or other fossil fuels in terms …

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What Is the Future Role of Fossil Fuels in the Electricity System?

If you put aside their environmental impacts, fossil fuels are wonderful for generating electricity.  They are cheap, reliable, and currently in abundant supply.  But the environmental drawbacks are considerable, and the most serious one is their contribution to climate change. To deal with climate change, do we need to adopt an attitude of unremitting hostility …

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The Economist on Natural Gas: Slouching Toward Mediocrity

I was quite interested in finding last week that The Economist’s most recent major survey is about natural gas.  Given the explosion of natural gas resources (uh…so to speak) and the world’s growing reliance on it, I needed to get up to speed. Besides, from a climate perspective, getting the fracking issue right is crucial.  …

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Senator Santorum and the Environmental Chalice of Evil

Here is what  Santorum said yesterday (from Politico): “You hear all the time, the left: ‘Oh, the conservatives are the anti-science party.’ No we’re not. We’re the truth party,” the former Pennsylvania senator said at a campaign event in Oklahoma City. “Because the left is always looking for a way to control you. They’re always …

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Environmentalism Versus Science

  The French National Assembly yesterday voted to ban “fracking,” which extracts shale gas and oil by injecting water, chemicals, and sand into rock formations, and has received strong criticism from the environmental community.  So you would think that the action, taken by a conservative government, would have pleased environmentalists. Apparently not: Far from claiming …

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