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Environment

Neighbors bicker in Pa. over forced gas drilling

Bruce & Jody Clingan

NEW BEDFORD, PA. — An energy company is dusting off an old, unused state law that can force property owners to accept oil and gas drilling under their land, pitting neighbor against neighbor in a Pennsylvania community and raising the possibility that lawmakers will have to take sides. Houston-based Hilcorp seeks to use a 1961 Pennsylvania law to drill under the ...

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City to build $3.8M desalination plant to ease shortage

water droplet

RAYMONDVILLE — The city will build a reverse osmosis plant to treat brackish groundwater to reduce the amount of water it would buy for residents during the regional water shortage, officials said Friday. The reverse osmosis plant will generate 2 million gallons of water a day for the city that uses about 1.5 million gallons a day, City Manager Eleazar ...

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Railroad Commission hires seismologist to study earthquakes

seismometer

The Texas Railroad Commission said Friday that it has hired its first staff seismologist, a position created in response to citizen concerns following a swarm of small earthquakes in the Azle area beginning last November. David Craig Pearson, a Ph.D. geophysicist whose professional experience includes a stint with Los Alamos National Laboratory from 1993 to 2006, starts April 1. The ...

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Editorial: Two positive steps for Railroad Commission

Texas Railroad Commission logo

It’s been two months since the last recorded earthquake in Parker County. The reprieve from seismic activity is welcome, but concerns about recent quakes’ possible cause — wastewater disposal wells tied to hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” — still loom large for the Azle residents, who would prefer that shaking, rattling and rolling be reserved for the dance floor. The state’s ...

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Pipeline that leaked, causing evacuations was not legally required to be checked

community meeting

The leaking, 40-year-old gas pipeline that sickened three dozen Arvin residents and ultimately forced their evacuation last week was never inspected by state or federal authorities because, at just 3 inches in diameter, the pipe isn’t big enough to require such testing, officials said this week. The field-gas pipeline is not covered under federal regulations by the U.S. Department of ...

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As family of 6 recovers from house blast, investigators trace illegal gas hookup

home explosion

Five of the six family members — including two toddlers — injured in a house explosion on Detroit’s east side Thursday night are still recovering after suffering severe burns from the fire that leveled the house. Meanwhile Friday, investigators were puzzling out who may have illegally hooked up the stove to a gas line, with suspicions pointing not to the ...

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Oil sector withholds information about rail cargoes, says U.S. Regulator

Close up of old rusted large train engine Train Coupling Rods

By Reuters Media  WASHINGTON – U.S. transport regulators on Friday criticized the oil industry for not sharing important information about the kinds of rail shipments that were involved in a number of recent fiery derailments. In letters with regulators and testimony to lawmakers, leaders of trade groups like the American Petroleum Institute have said since January that they will share results ...

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White House Announces Methane Regulations Overhaul

cattle

John Bestoloffe , Shale Plays Media The Obama administration announced today it would implement new strategies targeted at reducing methane emissions from sources such as landfills, ranches and oil and natural gas extraction. The announcement is the latest in a series of recent plans by the executive branch to begin addressing concerns over climate change without relying on Congress for ...

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Town passes comprehensive plan, fracking ban

oneonta armory

The town of Oneonta this week adopted a comprehensive plan and an anti-fracking law, officials said Thursday. The Oneonta Town Board continued public hearings Wednesday night on the measures because of a snow storm that hindered attendance at a meeting earlier this month. During the continued hearing, three speakers addressed the comprehensive plan and four spoke about the ban on ...

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