Saturday, May 26, 2012



You might think that Halliburton and Blackwater are old news, but they are still messing around trying to get a big piece of military contracts and private policing in America and Europe. If you don't know much about either of them, the info below will fill you in and get you up to date as well.

In his farewell speech, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned us against the current connection that exists between the government, big business and the military. ''This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence - economic, political, even spiritual - is felt in every city, every State House, every office of the federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.''

This union has been called “The Iron Triangle.” Eisenhower also said, ''In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes.''

But he also told us the weopon we can use to thwart this conspiracy, ''Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry'' .

Dick Cheney was quoted during the 2000 presidential debate, when asked about how financially successful he had been during his time as Halliburton's CEO, “I can tell you, Joe[Lieberman], the government had absolutely nothing to do with it.”

But when he helped to write a corporate biography for the company in 1996, and in it he stated, “But no matter how well we position ourselves in the market, I am struck by the extent to which the success or failure of project is as much of a political decision as it is an engineering decision. Many times the engineering and technical aspects of a project can be relatively easy, but the project may be thwarted by unresolved political issues.”

Dick Cheney was made CEO of Haliburton, because he had political connections on Washington and at the Pentagon. During the next five years after his appointment, he was instrumental in getting the company $1.5 billion in government backed loans. Previously, they only had $100 million in loans. Halliburton's government contracts doubled from $1.2 billion to $2.3 billion. They moved up on the Pentagon's list of top contractors from 73rd to 18th. The other members of the company must have been rubbing their hands together and smiling with glee, when Cheney became Vice President of the United States.

During the 2000 Presidential campaing investigations into the company began, partly by anti-war groups. And the more people investigated the more they found.

The Securities and Exchange Commission investigated them for fixing their books to show higher profits, that shareholders were unaware of. They were also investigated by the U.S. Attorney's office because they overcharged the government for word at Fort Ord, California in 1997. They dropped the investigation, but KBR settled a Civil Case for $2 million dollars. They were investigated
by the Nigerian government because they bribed one of it's tax official and they admitted to doing so.
This investigation was dropped, but a Civil Case was settled by Kellogg Brown & Root for $2 million. KBR is a subsidiary of Halliburton. KBR received a $2 billion contract to rebuild Iraq's oil infrastructure.

If you belief the company's image as a patriotic company, you would still have to agree that it does not excuse it's business practices.

“The biggest problem I faced as Secretary of Defense was the United States Congress.” “Now that I'm chairman and CEO of Halliburton, the biggest problem I face is the United States Congress.”

During his time with the company, Dick Cheney, hired several people from the Pentagon's staff to work for Halliburton.

Joe Lopez—retired four-star admiral and former aide to Defense Secretary Cheney, went to work for Halliburton in 1999, becoming senior vice president of government operations at KBR.

Dave Gribbin—former assistant to Congressman Cheney and Cheney's Chief of Staff at the Pentagon, became Halliburton's vice president for government relations and its chief lobbyist between 1996 and 2000. Then he went back to the White House with Cheney.

Charles Dominy—retired three-star general and former commander at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, went to work for Halliburton in 1995 and became chief lobbyist in 2001 after Gribbin went bact to the White House.

Lawrence Eagleburger—former president of Kissinger Associates, George H.W. Bush's secretary of state, and a former board member of Dresser Industries, served on Halliburton's board 1998-2003(Halliburton purchased Dresser in 1998 and in addition Prescott Bush, G.W.'s grandfather served on Dresser's board from 1930-1952 and George Sr. worked there)

Ray Hunt—Dallas based Hunt Oil Company. Provided financial support to both Bush presidents candidacies. He was appointed by George W. Bush Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. He began to serve on Halliburton's board 1998.

C.J. “Pete” Silas—served on the Transition Energy Advisory Team of George W. Bush. He became a member of Halliburton's board in 1993 and served until 2005.

Kenneth Derr, former Chevron CEO , joined the board in 2001

Kirk Van Tine—registered lobbyist for Halliburton, He was general counsel and later Deputy Secretary of the Department of Transportation


The Speaker pro tempore--
Under a previous order of the House, the gentlewoman from Ohio (Ms. Kaptur) is recognized for 5 minutes.

Ms. Kaptur--
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to support an effort by the gentleman from California (Mr. Waxman), one of the most distinguished Members of this House. He has called for full disclosure of the massive unbid $7 billion contract, that is 7,000 millions of dollars, that Halliburton Corporation has just received from the Department of Defense for the reconstruction of the demolished nation of Iraq. The emergency no-bid contract for Halliburton, again not competitively bid, is supposed to fight oil fires.

Vice President DICK CHENEY just happened to head up Halliburton Corporation after he left the first Bush administration and before rejoining this Bush administration. Reports indicate he currently receives $180,000 per year in payments from Halliburton Corporation in the form of deferred compensation.

The company apparently will be able to expand this no-bid $7 billion contract, first, to operate the oil fields themselves and, second, to distribute the oil to which our Nation is so hopelessley addicted.

In a letter to Lieutenant General Robert Flowers, commander of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the gentleman from California (Mr. Waxman) said he did not mean to suggest that the Corps has intentionally misled anyone about Halliburton's contract. However, the gentleman from California (Mr. Waxman) is concerned s all of us should be, about the reluctance of the Bush administration to provide complete informantion about the Halliburton contract and other contracts for the reconstruction of Iraq.

The gentleman from California, (Mr. Waxman) questioned how the long-term contracts for Halliburton could be reconciled with the administration's stated intent to give the Iraqi people control of the oil in Iraq.

The gentleman from California (Mr. Waxman) said, “Only now, over 5 weeks after the contract was first disclosed, are Members of Congres and the putlic learning that Halliburton Corporation may be asked to pump and distribute Iraqi oil under contract.”

The gentleman from California (Mr. Waxman) repeated the Corps' statement that the contract could be worth up to $7 billion for up to 2 years, Mr. Speaker, as the United States begins the long and expensive process of rebuilding in the wreckage of Iraq, perhaps we should reflect on the process of massive unbid contracts, using taxpayer dollars, to the company that was formerly headed by the Vice President. If the press were awake in America, they would persue this story to the very ends of the Earth.

If the Congress were more responsible in fulfilling its responsibility as a co-equal branch of government to our taxpayers, we would have hearings into this connection. If the death of Vince Foster is worthy of congressional investigations, then certainly unbid billions of dollars of contracts to
Halliburton and others close to this administration deserve at least the same level of scrutiny.

This Member of Congress intends to offer a bill to assure competitive bidding in any contracts related to rebuilding in Iraq or Afghanistan. It is amazing that I even have to do this, and it will be interesting to see who opposes me.

The Atlanta Journal Constitution said in a recent editorial that the secret Halliburton deal endangers U.S. Credibility. The Constitution questioned why a Halliburton subsidiary was the only company invited to bid on the Iraqi contract, why the contract was kept secret from the public until 2 weeks after it was signed this March, and why the true scope of the contract was not disclosed until last week. All are legitimate questions, particularly in a Nation that is trying to inculcate the rule of law and transparency as part of the nation-building process in Iraq.

The Journal Constitution also raised questions about a previous contract between the Halliburton subsidiary and the U.S. Army during Mr. CHENEY'S reign at Halliburton. The GAO determined in 1997 that Halliburton charged the Army more that $85 per sheet of plywood for building projects in Bosnia. A follow-up report in 2000 said the subsidiary's crews were being paid to clean offices as often as four times a day, and the company receives more than $2 billion for work being done in the Balkans.

Even if the Halliburton subsidiary were the only company capable of doing work in Iraq, which most oil industry people contradict, then why all the secrecy about the no-bid contract?

Mr. Speaker, Reuters Nes Service reported Halliburton has disclosed that it made approximately $2.4 million in improper payments to Nigeria, another oil regime getting favorable tax treatment.

The gentleman from California (Mr. Waxman) should be commended for his dogged pursuit of the truth. The American public should wish him well.

Fracking for Natural Gas

How did Halliburton and KBR get to be so powerful?
Between 1900 and 1912 the number or automobiles registered, jumped from 8,000 to 902,000.
More cars being purchased meant more gasoline was needed and more wells needed to be found and drilled. The early wells in the eastern states used steam powered rigs. They pounded through the rock and earth with a chisel on the end shaped like a see-saw. In the southwestern states the ground is unstable and the holes that they drilled would cave in faster than they could dig them. To drill there, took lots of labor and lots of money.

A rotary drill which was attached to a long hollow pipe was the method used in the late 1920's. This method worked the dirt up as the drill went down. While it is working it's way down, more pipes are added. Pressurized liquid called drilling mud, was forced down the hollow pipe and out of the drill bit, this forced the debris back up to the surface, and cooled down and lubricated the drill bit. Sometimes underground water and gases leaked into the oil and ruined it.

Almond A. Perkins owned a company that had a method of forcing cement down the hollow pipe of the drill. As it was forced back up the walls of the hole, it would seal out the groundwater and gases to keep the oil uncontaminated. Earl Haliburton workde for Perkin's company.

Earl Halliburton moved around the Southwest trying to find people to hire his company to drill using the method he had learned from Almond Perkins. At one point he and Perkins fought over the patent. But Halliburton had added some of his own ideas to Perking original design.

It took a while for Haliburton's company to become successful, because he didn't get paid if the wells he dug didn't produce oil.

In 1924, Erle Halliburton issued 3,500 shares of stock at $100 a share and named his company, Halliburton Oil Well Cementing Company, or Howco for short. Some of the biggest oil producers in the area like Duncan, Oklahoma bought into his company. His salary jumped to $15,000 a year. He also received $130,000 to use his patents and reinvested this money in his company.

While Halliburton was building his company, Brown and Root were getting their start in building roads.The company owned by George and Herman Brown and their brother in law, Dan Root, grated roads and graveled them. They eventually, branched out into building bridges and laying asphalt. He
Brown and Root knew that they needed government contracts and in order to get them, they needed to get the support of politicians. Texas' Highway Department was known to be corrupt at that time and so was the Texas Highway Commission. Brown and Root did not have the money to pay bribes because their company was too small. In their biography on the Brown brothers, Joseph Pratt and Christopher Castanada wrote, “They had to become more adept at playing the game of political influence. This was a natural part of doing business in the world of public works contracts. They accepted this reality.”

One of these important political connections was with former Texas senator and eventually U.S. President, Lyndon Johnson.

Eventually, KBR became part of Halliburton's company because the services that both companies provided often crossed over.

What is Halliburton now? It is the largest oil and gas services company in the world. It provides almost every service possible to the energy industry. It has over 100,000 employees in more than 120 countries and it has more than 7,000 clients. Kellogg Brown and Root was split off from the main company in 2002. As previously outlined, KBR is the engineering and construction part of the company. Halliburton still provides most of the operating income.

While working for Haliburton, Dick Cheney bought Dresser Industries. It had claims against it from 400,000 people for asbestos related injuries. Haliburton had to settle for $4.7 billion dollars. In order to protect the companies assets from this settlement, Haliburton split in Halliburton Energy Services Group and KBR, and placed KBR under bankruptcy protection.

While giving his State of the Union Address in 2005, George W. Bush referred to the asbestos claims as, “frivolous asbestos claims” and “irresponsible class actions”. It is obvious where his interests lay. This company had old ties to his families oil business.

Halliburton is an international company. They have offices in Nigeria and oil and gas projects there too. They are often hired by Chevron to build facilities in Nigeria. KBR was hired to build Chevron's Agbami offshore drilling facility in 2005.

Gidikumo Sule was killed in Opuama village in the Niger Delta in 1997. It has been reported that he was killed by the Nigerian Mobile Police. Supposedly, he was part of a group that took over a Halliburton barge because they were protesting the fact that the company failed to keep an agreement to hire local workers. He was reportedly unarmed. The Mobile police are funded by the oil companies. They then carry out the orders that come from the oil companies. They are referred to as "Kill and Go" squads. This is because they can go into an area, kill with impunity and leave. It has been reported that they were ordered to kill Gidikumo Sule, along with suppressing protestors all over Nigeria.

The 1996 Iran-Libyan Sanctions Act, prohibits American companies from doing business with Iran. But there is a loop-hole. A companies subsidiaries can do business there as long as the employess are not U.S. citizens and are not acting as a front for the the larger company that owns. them.

The money from pension funds is often invested on behalf of the members of the funds. New York City's pension fund in heavily invested in Halliburton. This pension fund is worth over $82 Billion dollars. The firefighters and policemen of New York discovered that their pensions were being used to support Iran.

CBS News reported in 2004, that Halliburton Products and Services, Ltd. sold nearly $40 million dollars a year in oil field services to the government of Iran. They were able to do this because it is a subsidiary of the larger Halliburton Corporation and is registered in the Cayman Islands. CBS's reporter, Lesley Stahl, went to the Cayman Islands and only found a mailbox. The mail is rerouted from the Cayman's to Halliburton in Houston, TX.

Reporters from 60 Minutes were told that the company was run from Dubai. The reporters went there and found that the subsidiary had phone and fax lines that were shared with the main company. Then a Federal Grand Jury in Texas opened a criminal investigation.

Under pressure from Congress, the general public, media and it's shareholders, Halliburton agreed not to take any new contracts in Iran. It however kept the ones it already had there.

Their business in the United Kingdom serves as an example of how they do business. They received contracts to build access roads and ramps at Heathrow Airport from the British Airport Authority. They are also designing submarine refueling and refitting areas for the Ministry of Defence, and they have contracts to handle the logistics of rapid deployment from the British military.

In Russia, they have contracts to dismantle and destroy 350 intercontinental ballistic missiles as well as the launch silos.

Despite the Libyan sanctions prohibiting doing business there, they are overseeing the construction of Libya's Great Man-made River Project.

Halliburton is helping the Malasians to upgrade their natural gas facilities. They are also building a railroad link between Darwin and Alice Springs in Australia. In South America, they are building waste-water treatment plants and a pipeline for Bolivian and Brazilian oil companies.

The companies contracts in Iraq are in the billions of dollars. And they have contracts to provide support for American Peacekeeping forces in the Balkans.

The company has a subsidiary called Halliburton NUS Environmental Corp. It has a $25 million dollar contract to remove both above ground and underground storage tanks and the contaminated soil around them for the U.S. Air Force..

KBR was also involved in building Guantánamo Bay. And it was still part of Halliburton at the time it received contracts to build the military bases in Iraq.

Halliburton has been proven to be corrupt. They have contracts with the Air Force and several other governmen agencies. They collaborate with the EPA to decide how to clean up environmental disasters.
If the idea of such a corrupt company contracting with the Air Force and other agencies like the EPA to decide how to go about cleaning up environmental disasters isn't scary to you, I have no idea what would be. Some of the stuff they are involved with is nuclear. I will be writing a separate article on Natural Gas drilling and the contamination of ground water. Guess who has their fingers in that pie?

Much has been reported in Europe and the U.S. about the privitization of police forces. Halliburton has it's feet right square in the middle of that too. I will also be writing a post on that..

The Halliburton agenda: the politics of oil and money, Dan Briody – 2004
Congressional Record, V. 149, Pt. 9, May 14, 2003 to May 21, 2003 - Page 11964
Congressional Record, V. 149, Pt. 10, May 22, 2003 to June 9, 2003 - Page 12783
The Bush agenda: invading the world, one economy at a time - Page 119, Antonia Juhasz – 2006

Natural Gas and Ground Water Contamination/Halliburton

Most likely you are like me and you don't know very much about how natural gas is acquired and what impact it has on our environment. You have probably heard that it is the new way to go in order to lessen our dependence on foreign oil.

I recently learned that the process is called “fracking” or fracture stimulation. I have already written an article about the corruption of Halliburton and it's connection to the Bush Sr. and Jr. administrations. In 2004 Bush's E.P.A. Came to the conclusion that there was no evidence that hydraulic fracturing caused any contamination of groundwater. But it never did any water tests to find out. In 2005 fracking was exempted from the Safe Drinking Water Act.

I watched a documentary called Gasland and was greatly disturbed by what I saw. People were actually able to set their tapwater on fire by holding a lighter up to the faucet. I watched it on HBO but you can get it on DVD or from Netflix.

The people Josh Fox interviewed were being told that they had to prove that the natural gas industry had contaminated their water. Shouldn't it be the gas industry proving that it didn't contaminate the water

In response to this an industry group released a debunking website called Energy In Depth, www. They are a lobbying group and PR firm for the American Petroleum Institute.

For everything they disagreed with they admitted something that was still not good.

Besides admitting that their industry had not been being regulated by the Safe Drinking Water Act, they say that the fracking fluid with chemicals in it is only 1% of the fluid. But this one percent has been accused of containing, arsenic, asbestos, barium, cadmium, chromium, cyanide, lead, mercury, chlorobenzene, dichlorobenzene, dioxin, polychlorinated biphenyls, toluene, trichloroethylene, xylene, radium 226-228, uranium, among other chemicals and they admitted it. This 1% is also millions of gallons of water, and they can't recover all of it to treat it.

Besides that they put a lot of this water into pits that are not even always lined so there are standing bodies of this contaminated water.

The industry has been putting out the falsehood that HF had never been regulated under the SDWA. But that is not true. The following spreadsheet shows just how it was regulated, up until 2005 when it was exempted from this regulation as a result of Bush policy.

It shows the original law and the exemptions regarding them.

Josh Fox asserted that the Bush/Cheney administration pushed these exemptions through and EID says that is inaccurate because a bunch of other senators voted for it too. One they call attention to is Ken Salazar, from Colorado and Barack Obama as senator from Illinois is also pointed out. This just proves to me that it doesn't matter whether or not you are Republican or Democrat when it comes to money and also that when a president wants something bad enough, sometimes it is better to appear to vote with him than against him.  

George Bush created an Energy task force within 2 weeks of being in office. There doesn't need to be much else proof that he was behind it.

EID and Halliburton refer to the 60 year history of hydraulic fracturing. But this is misleading as well. The practice is not the same now as it was in it's early days. Modern HF uses 13,500 pounds of pressure but it used to be less than 10,000 pounds of pressure per square inch.

Modern HF uses up to seven million gallons of water per frack. In Multi Stage Fracks, which last 3-4 days, about 1000 gallons per minute of water is used. That adds up to 5,760,000 of water.

Originally HF was not used in combination with horizontal drilling. And the chemical mixture that is used is new. Is this a new innovative procedure or is it a 60 year old practice? You can't have it both ways.

If you could believe that the drilling process was entirely clean, what about the fact that the shale formations themselves hold, heavy metals, like lead, arsenic, strontium and chromium. There are also radioactive substances such as uranium, thorium and radium in the Marcellus shale. How can you believe that these wouldn't be released in the process?

This muck is classified as general industrial waste, which keeps the wastewater from having to be handled as carefully as it otherwise might be. The Department of Environment Conservation has conducted tests which show this water to naturally have 250 times the EPA allowable amount of radioactive material and it is thousands of times higher than what is allowed in drinking water.

What about the air pollution created by the industry? One report I read said that they cause ground level ozone.

In response to Josh Fox's documentary, EID claimed that the flammable gas in the water occurred naturally and called it biogenic. Basically they are stating that the gas was natural, but they didn't say where it came from. I do not believe that all of these people had flammable water before the drilling started and that nobody noticed it or that it mysteriously appeared in multiple households at exactly the same time but totally unrelated to the drilling.

What about the waste-water produced by the drilling? Chesapeake Energy reported on it's website that the water cannot be recycled because after a few days and sometimes a few hours it has a salt content as high as 70,000 parts per million. That is more than twice the salt content of seawater. Just this one statement would make you wonder about the environmental impact of this drilling. Freshwater fish can't live in an environment that is that salty and I can't drink it, can you?

The following is taken from Halliburton's own website:

Fracture Stimulation Position Statement

Fracture stimulation creates a crack – or a fracture – in a rock that allows natural gas and/or crude oil trapped in underground formations to move more freely through isolated production tubing so that it may rise to the surface at faster rates and, in turn, increase hydrocarbon production from reservoirs. Basic elements – sand, water and pressure – are used to create fractures. In fact, sand and water make up more than 99 percent of the fracturing fluids used today. While the majority of fracturing fluids are of sand and water, the remaining portion involves complex chemistry, much of which has been created through Halliburton's research and development efforts, and which is managed in accordance with proper industry and governmental procedures.
This technology – also known as hydraulic fracturing – has been used for 60 years in more than one million wells in the United States, and has been studied and reviewed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and state governmental organizations to ensure it is a safe means to enhance the production of needed fuel resources.
In light of the global demand for natural gas, formation stimulation is critical to the responsible production of hydrocarbons. While alternative fuels have promise, the need for traditional fuels – including natural gas and oil – is likely to remain substantial for decades into the future. According to the International Energy Association's World Energy Outlook in 2008, fossil fuels –natural gas, oil and coal – will account for 80 percent of the world's primary energy mix in 2030.
Our goal is to provide products and services that have the smallest environmental impact, are safe in their intended use, consume energy and natural resources efficiently and can be recycled, reused or disposed of safely. We seek to develop services and technologies for maximizing the recovery of oil and gas in existing reservoirs, and for pursuing clean energy sources for the future.
Halliburton views Health, Safety, Environment (HSE) & Operational Excellence as critical to our success and long-term sustainability and we are committed to continuously improving our performance. Our Corporate HSE Policy is overseen by the Health, Safety and Environmental Committee of the board of directors, which provides direction for the management of HSE and input on current and emerging health, safety and environmental issues.
As the cleanest fossil fuel, natural gas meets a variety of energy needs – from generating electricity and heating homes to powering vehicles. More and more, however, natural gas resources are produced from unconventional plays (e.g., gas shales, tight sands and coalbed methane) and cannot be adequately secured and delivered to the customer economically without the use of fracture stimulation technology.
The U.S. Congress has recognized that fracture stimulation has been regulated for decades by the states and is essential for future development of America's energy supplies. When passing the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) in 1974, and then amending it in 1980, Congress created a program to monitor disposal of wastes injected underground. Congress made clear it never intended to regulate well stimulation activities under the SDWA. Congress reaffirmed this position in 2005 when it clarified that fracturing stimulation is exempted from the SDWA, except where diesel is used in the fracturing fluids.
That same year (2005), Halliburton was the first to introduce an industry-leading advancement – continuing to improve a technology it first commercialized in 1949 – by introducing diesel-free liquid gel concentrates into its suite of well stimulations fluid systems and helping operators move to higher levels of environmental performance.
Halliburton has always embraced the job of ensuring that all of our technologies meet the highest environmental standards. We continue to take a leadership position in developing systems to rank the HSE risks of chemical products used in oilfield services.
This system, once completed, will enable us to rank our chemical products and compare the risks of products that perform the same function. When the highest risk chemicals are identified, we will work to eliminate materials and change formulations to lower these risks.
Chemicals used in fracture stimulation products are the first to be ranked using this system. Halliburton expects to categorize most of our fracture stimulation chemical product portfolio in 2009 using this process. We continue to make publicly available all the Material Safety Data Sheets for our chemical products on our Web  site.
There have been questions asked and allegations made about the perceived risks of groundwater contamination from fracture stimulation. Halliburton remains confident that fracture stimulation is a safe and environmentally sound practice based on the industry's decades-long track record, as well as the conclusions of government and industry studies and surveys.
The natural gas and oil industry protects shallow aquifers by taking steps to prevent the escape of fracture stimulation fluids from wells and formations. Operators use a steel casing or liner which is then cemented in-place to isolate the surrounding rock from the reservoir. These zonal isolation techniques seal off and protect drinking water from fluids used in wells. In addition, fracture stimulation activities take place at depths that are typically thousands of feet deeper than any groundwater aquifers that could reasonably be considered a source of drinking water.
These industry practices are consistent with state regulatory programs and have effectively prevented drinking water contamination in more than one million fracture stimulation jobs across the United States. Studies conducted by the EPA, state agencies, and industry organizations have found no substantiated evidence that fracture stimulation has ever contaminated underground sources of drinking water. Even so, Halliburton continues to improve our fracture stimulation fluids and processes to further improve their overall environmental performance.

There is a lot ot tech speak in this statement, but basically they are saying that they use cement around the drilling pipes to keep groundwater from mixing with the gas or with the chemicals they use in the drilling process. They say that they mostly use water and sand, and that they are doing research to make sure that the other chemicals are as safe as possible. They say that they are also exempt from the GWSA as long as there is no diesel being used in the process. They say that their chemicals are diesel free and meet government and industry regulations. “When passing the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) in 1974, and then amending it in 1980, Congress created a program to monitor disposal of wastes injected underground.”

This method has been evaluated by state agencies and the EPA and deemed safe by them. Their goal is to use methods that have little environmental empact and that the byproducts can be recycled, reused and safely disposed of.

But this is obviously a bunch of smoke and mirrors. The Associated Press reported in late 2010 that the EPA asked for records showing what is used to frack new gas reserves. Eight other companies complied, but Halliburton refused. A Halliburton spokesperson said the EPA's request is too vague and would result in a mountain of paper, but the company is making efforts to honor the request.

Why is this important? Because in states all over the country fracking has caused, groundwater contamination, and in Pennsylvania, there have been spills and explosions.

New York sits on the largest fresh water reserve in the country. But in direct conflict with that is the fact that the combined natural gas and oil reserves in New York and Pennsylvania could meet all of America's energy needs for years.

There has been a massive amount of drilling going on along the Marcellas Shale, which is the size of Greece. It lies along an area that is 6,000 feet below New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Ohio. There are companies from all over the world either drilling or financing drilling here.

Halliburton was one of the companies involved in the BP oil spill in Louisianna. Their cement work was faulty on that well, so who is to say that none of their other drilling sites is faulty?

When it began to come out that there was an environmental disaster here, Gov. Ed Rendell of PA banned any further drilling in state forest lands. What in the world possessed them to allow that in forests to start with. But they have been doing it on public lands for years now.

Kathryn Klaber, president of the Marcellus Shale Coalition, an industry group, said the natural gas industry has safely and responsibly operated on public lands for years.
"This responsible production of clean-burning, homegrown natural gas is creating tens of thousands of local jobs and hundreds of millions in tax revenues for the commonwealth," Klaber said."
But as good as stopping the drilling on PA's public land sounds, such drilling only accounts for about 10 percent of all the drilling in PA.

Pennsylvania has already leased about one-third of its 2.2 million acres of state forest for gas drilling. The leased area represents about half of the public land covering the shale gas deposits.

It is predicted that the land that has already been leased could end up with as much as 12,000 wells on it.

Eventually, Halliburton released some information on the chemicals they used. But they won't say how much, where, or the exact concentration of the chemicals they use.

Some of them are: hydrochloric acid, methanol and acetic acid. FR-66 (friction reducer),FE-1A (acid additive), BE-9 (biocide to prevent bacteria that cause hydrogen sulfide to grow and plug up pipes)

According to informantion on their website, Halliburton says that HAI-OS is an acid-inhibitor and the UK classes it as (O)CNS Group C Chemical. And for health and safety labeling it should be considered toxic and flammable.

One of just 4 states to require the disclosure of chemicals used in hydaulic fracturing is Colorado. Their state legislature passed regulations in 2009. And now Colorado representatives, Diana DeGette and Jared Polis and 46 others are pressuring former Senator Ken Salazar, who is now Interior Secretary to change and toughen regulations compelling companies to disclose the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing.

Yesterday, January 20, 2011, the EPA stated that it is finding that diesel has been being used in this fracturing process. They issued a statement, because the companies drilling for natural gas are saying that the EPA is trying to enforce new rules without having in public hearings or giving anyone a chance to protest. The EPA says they are just restating that they have the right to regulate the use of diesel in the hydraulic fracturing policy.

They are basically going to have to go to court to prove that the law under the 2005 Energy Policy Act gave the E.P.A. The right to regulate hydraulic fracturing when diesel is used. It will become a bunch of legal semantics over the fact that the Energy Policy Act excluded hydraulic fracturing from it's definition of 'underground injection' under the Safe Drinking Water Act, it did give the EPA the right to regulate the use of diesel fuel.

Halliburton was one of the companies that admitted using diesel, but they say that it didn't violate anything because they only did it where there wasn't any drinking water.

Pretty interesting, considering they said on their website that they don't use diesel, since they have a diesel-free gel that they invented. And their own website states that the EPA has the right to regulate the use of diesel.

We need this regulation in place, because it has been alleged that among other admitted chemicals, thse companies are using highly toxic chemicals like benzene, toluene, xylene and formaldehyde. Landowners have reported severe land, water and air contamination that has greatly affected their health and their livelihoods.

I have seen the map, and half of my state (Ohio) and all of West Virginia, half of Kentucky and most of Pennsylvania are being drilled. If you live in one of the places on this map, you should be concerned, unless you figure on not ever drinking anything again.

Until attention was brought to this issue, there had not been any proven contamination of water, because it had not been investigated. If these chemicals have shown up in tapwater, which had previously been clean, something caused it to be there. They are only mentioning the HF part of the process, and not to the whole process, when they say that there has never been a case of contamination proven.

If HF does not inject chemicals into drinking water, then why did they need an exemption that said they could to be passed by Congress?

Now it has begun to be investigated. If the light does not continue to be shone onto this matter, it will fade away.

In the European Union you don't have to prove that the company caused the contamination, the burden of proof is on these companies and not their victims.

If these companies come to your town, you may end up in a position where you can't stay on your land because you have no water, but your property has no re-sale value because it has no water. And if you try to settle a case with them, they will make you sign a non-disclosure agreement in order to get them to provide you with replacement water. And even then you won't know if you are still somehow being exposed to these chemicals through the air or environment. For instance the methane that makes their water flammable can escape from the water and leak into their homes and you can suffocate if you breathe it. At lower levels it can cause headaches and brain damage.

Only 25 to 50 percent of the water that is injected into the ground is recovered. The rest of what was injected is still there contaminating the groundwater. Once it has been contaminated, how much will it cost us to clean it, and is it even possible to clean it up?

Many of the lands being drilled in our country are Bureau of Land Management lands. Some of these lands are in the Yellowstone Ecosystem. In our Appalachian region, there are so many beautiful places that still exist, I would hate to see them destroyed by contaminated water. In these other states, like Wyoming, there have been studies conducted which show that the big game, fish and other wildlife are being adversely affected by the HF drilling.

The Philadelphia Inquirer published an article on March 14, 2010, written by Andrew Maykuth. It was called “Gas Drilling Going Deep”. He wrote that the 18 top gas companies held leases in the Marcellus Shale are which amounted to 13,717 square miles. That is a huge amount of our beautiful land to have under their control.

Chesapeake Energy Corporation has stated that eight horizontal wells on one pad per square mile is what it consideres to be optimal.

The county I live in only has 14 people to cover all of the things the E.P.A. Has to do. With reference to water, there are only four. But I have to give my state government some credit.

In 2007 a house near Cleveland exploded. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources issued a 153 page report that blamed the explosin on a nearby gas well, that had faulty cement casing and was drilled with hydraulic fracturing. It had allowed gas to seep into the homeowners well water.

Most of the lists of counties in Ohio I found did not include Lawrence County, where I live, but the following report says that Ohio has finalized reports on Lawrence and Meigs county. These reports give geologic cross sections and well locations, and maps.

In addition to my county which lies along the Ohio River, on the other side of the river in West Virginia there are about five counties working on reports and and in Kentucky there were
three counties in the process of compiling reports. But this is an old report, which means the drilling has probably already started and a done deal.

I have city water, but my water company obtains this water from wells along the Ohio river. I also found another map but out by the DNR which shows where the oil and gas lies at in Ohio.

The ODNR is the department that would give permits to drill these wells. I can't find any information on oil or natural gas drilling here, but I have no doubt that it has at least been well researched. The county has been thoroughly mined in the past for both iron and coal.

Here are a few videos you can watch to see some of this stuff in action.


Friday, May 4, 2012

Is Masonry Compatible With Christianity?

I found this blog posts by some former Masons and thought I would share it here. It has some very interesting points.