Category Archives: Uncategorized

Michigan Court Dismisses Anti-Fracking Lawsuit Against State

  Unknown   A Michigan Circuit Court decision dismissed a fracking-related lawsuit that was commenced by environmental groups, including the Michigan Land Air Water Defense and others.  The lawsuit sought a declaratory judgment stopping Michigan from awarding mineral rights within certain state lands.   The Court found that the state’s issuance of a lease does not present an imminent threat to the environment and, as a consequence, the State of Michigan did not violate the public trust. According to the Court, it was “not able to consider…

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ABA’s Blawg 100 – Nominations Due August 9th

The ABA Journal is putting together its annual list of the 100 best legal blogs, based on reader votes. As publishers of the Shale Watch, we are proud to be considered for this prestigious list — and we would be honored if you would help. If you enjoy visiting the Shale Watch, and believe it is worthy of industry recognition, please click here to visit the ABA Blawg 100 Amici page and nominate us before the August 9th deadline. Thank you!  …

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New Case Study Focuses On Potential Occupational Exposure to Silica At Fracturing Sites

frac-sand-2A new study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene concludes that silica from frac sand presents a potential occupational hazard to fracking workers and consequently recommends respiratory protection greater than commonly used half mask respirators commonly used by workers.   Given the use of frac sand in fracking operations, the study focused potential silica exposure near sand transfer belts, from trucks leaving fracking sites, and near other areas where the sand is heavily used. The first of its kind study was predicated on…

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Leaked EPA PowerPoint Concerning Dimock Methane In Groundwater

LEakThe latest media leak of internal government documents (in what generally appears to be a growing national trend) comes from the LA Times, where, reportedly, an Environmental Protection Agency employee, notably without permission, disclosed an internal PowerPoint presentation which included information related to the EPA testing of certain wells in the Dimock, Pennsylvania area. According to the LA Times, the document included statements noting methane levels that were found to be significantly higher in groundwater post-drilling. Of course, many are familiar with the high-profile…

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US DOE Initial Findings: No Groundwater Contamination

Department of EnergyAs reported by many outlets, initial results from a year-long United States Department of Energy Study of a hydraulic fracturing well in the Marcellus Shale region indicate no groundwater contamination associated with the practice.    Notably, the industry voluntarily cooperated with the DOE study.  This  cooperation between industry and government may be a sign of the future.  Notably also, the DOE used tracers in the fracking fluid which allowed the DOE to closely track fluid migration.  Specifically, the fluids were injected deep beneath the surface, but…

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