The Energy Roundup

Procession of men of the Blackfoot Confederacy...

Procession of men of the Blackfoot Confederacy on horseback (Photo credit: Galt Museum & Archives on The Commons)

I’ve managed to collect a few energy stories together for you. That’s about the only connection they have.

First off apparently Fairbanks-Morse got dinged on some engines.

Douglas Stewart over at Ameristroika brings us this good news. By now most know the end of coal production is coming soon if Obama and the EPA have their way.  U.S.Coal Industry-EPA Rule a setback for coal Now we learn, that it is not the only industry. From Doug Stewart:

I guess a small congrats is in order to the Obama administration. The first regulatory shakedown on marine equipment was a success. Fairbanks Morse Engines has been slapped with a $280,000 fine and has willingly “agreed” to spend upwards of half a million dollars “on an environmental project to resolve alleged violations of the Clean Air Act (CAA) and EPA’s marine diesel engine air rules”, according to the EPA’s report.:

Pollutant Impacts

No environmental harm resulted from the propulsion engines. The engines met EPA’s Tier 1 emission standards because they comply with international standards that pre-dated EPA’s Tier 1 emission standards.

Now, this actually gets interesting. Part of their violation comes from installing “32 uncertified FME engines as the main diesel generators on board eight new U.S. Navy’s auxiliary cargo and ammunition ship (T-AKE) class vessels.” Just so we all understand, they were working on government ships. Couldn’t there have been someone overseeing the installation just to make sure the proper engines were installed rather than letting the project proceed and fining them later?

Continue reading the story at Bunkerville.

It’s a pretty shoddy way to do business to let a government contractor go ahead and install a compliant product missing a label and then impose a sizable fine on the manufacturer but, I suppose that’s what we expect from the EPA.

Then there is a study from the University of Texas that indicates strongly that fracking does no harm to groundwater. That’s actually pretty much common sense but, there you go.

A University of Texas study has found no evidence that fracking — hydraulic fracturing of shale to extract natural gas — is contaminating groundwater.

Problems associated with the process have been reported in water, but they appear to occur at ground level or just below the surface, according to the study released Friday. Many are common to any natural-gas extraction process, or are the result of mishandling of wastewater, the researchers said.

“The bottom line was, in the areas we investigated … we found no direct evidence that hydraulic fracturing itself was contaminating groundwater,” said Charles Groat, professor of geology at the University of Texas at Austin.

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, involves injecting water, sand and chemicals at high pressure into shale, which shatters the rock, releasing natural gas. Wells are dug straight down into the ground and then branched off horizontally into the shale, making the gas far more accessible.

Like I said, that’s what common sense would tell us.
Continuing the theme on fracking.
A well in Glacier County undergoes hydraulic fracturing. Sun Times photo by Darryl L. Flowers

Ecosphere Technologies, Inc. a diversified water engineering, technology licensing and environmental services company, today announced that the Company, its majority-owned subsidiary, Ecosphere Energy Services LLC, and its sub-licensee, Hydrozonix LLC (collectively, the “Ecosphere Partners”) have signed a Letter of Commitment with the Blackfeet Nation to provide Ecosphere’s Ozonix water treatment services to oil and gas companies conducting hydraulic fracturing (“fracking” or “fracing”) operations on the 3,000 square mile Blackfeet reservation in Montana. Ecosphere Partners will be the exclusive provider of water treatment services on the Blackfeet reservation.

The Ecosphere-Blackfeet commitment will make available to operators a non-chemical approach for treating and reusing 100% of their flowback and produced waters on the reservation. Use of Ecosphere’s Ozonix technology will not only help preserve the Blackfeet Nation’s water resources, but also eliminate the need to truck wastewater to disposal sites off reservation, thereby improving the economics of shale oil and gas exploration on the reservation. This exclusive services agreement is part of a broad effort by the Blackfeet Nation to sustainably develop their heritage lands, bring jobs to tribal members and improve the economic well-being of the tribe.

Continue reading at The Montana Oil Report.

There are some hidden messages her that you should be aware of:

  1. When I lived up there, close to the Blackfeet, they were quite poor. The best paid members of the tribe were the smoke jumpers. So good for them.
  2. It’s looks like they have developed a method to retreat the fracking water so they don’t have the contamination problem when somebody screws up. and
  3. Glacier county is way over by Great Falls, almost to the Rocky Mountains and this is still the Bakken formation, which would indicate to a layman like me that the formation goes pretty much all across Montana.
Then there is this:

“We’re all in this together.”
-Paul Bellamy, Halliburton.

On Thursday, March 22, 2012, the brainchild of Pacific Steel and Recycling’s Tina Nolevanko and Sun Times owner and publisher Darryl Flowers, A Night in the Oil Patch, drew more than 100 business owners, geologists, drilling consultants, manufacturers, and landowners out to discuss oil activity on the Eastern slope of the Rockies.

Meetings have been taking place in Eastern Montana’s Richland County regularly over the last year as oil business picks up and local officials seek solutions on how best to handle the increased need for teachers, law enforcement, and infrastructure.

Choteau and Great Falls have entertained numerous round tables and listening sessions within the last few months in an effort to get a head start on the predicted boom in the area, educating the public about the lease and drilling processes.

Last Thursday, employees , associates, and spokesmen from companies as diverse as Primary Petroleum, Halliburton, and Anschutz joined representatives from local companies like Cascade Machine in Great Falls and Lewistown’s Wickens Construction at the Hilton Garden Inn to speak about better-business relations at the onset of a new economic boom.

The meeting opened with a statement from Jeff Millhollin, President and CEO of Pacific Steel. Asked after the meeting for his thoughts on how the evening went, Millhollin said, “Pacific Steel & Recycling was very pleased to have this opportunity to work with Darryl Flowers of the Fairfield Sun Times and co-host this event. It was a great opportunity for us to find yet another way to provide better service for our customers by recognizing opportunities coming their direction. We hope they will be able to utilize the information presented to support their businesses in the near future.”…

I like to see them telling the community something about what is likely to happen.

“We’re dealing with some pretty challenging circumstances.  We’ve learned that Porta potties do fly,” said Brent Temmer, “thanks to 80 mile an hour winds.”

In the spirit of social consciousness, attendees concluded the night with an auction to raise money for Lyndsey Tikalsky of Fairfield, who underwent brain surgery last December.  Tikalsky and her young family are without health insurance, and the means to cover Lyndsey’s recent medical expenses.

Fairfield artist and business owner Diane Hausmann donated an oil painting depicting a drilling rig on Halverson Road in Teton County.

Waterjet Extreme Technologies also donated artwork for the auction; a bronze replica of an “old time” oil well and derrick. The oil rig, complete with a Bloodwood base to represent the blood, sweat, and tears of the workers, was cut with highly pressurized water mixed with powdered garnet.  An American flag, reminiscent of tradition, completed the piece.

Read the entire article at The Montana Oil Report.

And look at that: All those terrible oil companies and 1%ers raising money so a young family can pay their medical bills.Sounds kind of like America to me.


About NEO
Lineman, Electrician, Industrial Control technician, Staking Engineer, Inspector, Quality Assurance Manager, Chief Operations Officer

4 Responses to The Energy Roundup

  1. bunkerville says:

    Thanks for the link.


    • No problem, It’s a good one.


  2. Are you sure on this? ‘Gasland’ was quite convincing.


    • Reasonably, let me dig around and get back to you.


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