Strewth! Olivia Newton-John spits the dummy on shale.

To most of us in the Northern Hemisphere,  Olivia Newton-John is a star of yesterday, hardly known to anyone under 50.  But in Australia, she still has a status equal to her position as one of Australia’s first international recording artists, and a very successful one by any nation’s standards. But why would that make her an expert on shale gas? Me neither, but it doesn’t stop her trying, in one of Australia’s premiere newspapers The Age:

AS A long-time advocate for the environment, I am greatly concerned about the continued health of Australia and its people. That is why I am horrified to learn of the extensive plans for coal seam gas and shale gas exploration here. Until recently, I was unaware of the hidden dangers lurking in this so-called clean natural gas exploration.

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Shale doubts in France swing both ways

Doubts over shale in France are about one of the few straws shale opponents world-wide can still grasp on, as  government and academic reports give shale a green light in New York State, the UK and shortly we predict South Africa.

But doubts can go both ways. Unlike the UK and much of the US,  France still has international steel companies, such as Vallourec. Vallourec is doing very well from shale in North America

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The Inevitable International Impact of Shale Oil

With most Europeans still in actual, or willful denial on the coming impact of shale gas, it is no wonder that the concept of shale oil completely escapes them.  But using North American analogues,  shale oil will as inevitable as shale gas. 

In the US we see that there are a number of prospective oil shales: The Bakken is well known, and readers here, and sometimes even elsewhere,  are no strangers to the Eagle Ford and other Perman Basin Texan plays. Chesapeake’s bullishness on the Utica Shale in Ohio is only one more North American Frontier, with shale oil potential in  California, Colorado, Wyoming, Alberta and Saskatchewan.

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Ohio’s Utica Shale beats the Eagle Ford says Chesapeake

Could it be that Texas’s  Eagle Ford Shale, much heralded here and elsewhere over the past two years, is this year’s big story but not next year’s?  We’ve seen the Chesapeake landmen (and women) fanning out westwards in the Utica Shale from Pennsylvania through Ohio and where Chesapeake goes, fortune follows. Big News in the latest  CHK results:

Chesapeake Announces a Major New Liquids-Rich Discovery
in the Utica Shale in Eastern Ohio

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Cuadrilla makes the Wall Street Journal

Mark Miller of Cuadrilla makes an interesting comment towards the end of this WSJ  story

Meanwhile, Mr. Miller began a series of public meetings to try to calm local jitters. The Cuadrilla CEO says he didn’t expect to be quite so much in the public eye. “I thought it would all be about well design and raising finance,” he says. “Sometimes you feel you’re a spokesman for the global oil and gas industry.”

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More Cash for Oz shale

The money is following Oz shale plays.  The three main areas are Cooper Basin in Queensland and South Australia,  the Beetaloo in Northern Territories and the emerging interest in Western Australia Canning Basin where ConocoPhillips have potential $109million farm in project.

Conventional off-shore LNG has been where it’s at in Australia, followed by another really big project in Queensland CBM to LNG.  Interestingly one of the big investors in that project are now looking at shale:

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US Federal Energy Secretary on shale

Here’s another target for those like Caroline Lucas of the UK Green Party who see proponents of shale as misguided victims of a massive gas industry lobbying scheme.  If so, in the UK the Cheneyite right wing plotting to poison the earth includes unlikely characters such as Liberal Democrat Chris Huhne. As the anti-shales eat themselves, not exactly right wing Obama’s Secretary for Energy Steven Chu isn’t exactly stupid either, having won the 1997 Nobel Prize for Physics. So isn’t he smart enough to see that shale is a poisonous, polluting Ponzi scheme?  Or is he smart enough to see beyond the rhetoric?

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UK Government on Shale Gas: Hypothetical and Unproven Risk to Water

The UK Government Response to the Energy and Climate Change Committee report on shale gas has a little bit of something for everyone, but it has much more for the nascent shale gas industry. One reason is that everyone put their views into the response:

In the light of the wide ranging nature of the Committee’s report, this is a joint response which includes contributions from the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC), the Treasury, the Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (Defra), the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), and the environment agencies of England, Wales and Scotland: The Environment Agency (EA), and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA).

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Shale Gas Flaring is Burning Money

Remember this next time someone says shale is a flash in the pan that won’t deliver much gas:

Flaring of natural gas from wells is on the upswing in Texas and North Dakota as oil and gas producers rush to develop new shale plays, and critics are not happy about it.

Flaring, once a common practice, involves burning off natural gas that cannot be captured and sold in order to produce more valuable oil. It is frowned upon because it causes air pollution, boosts global warming and wastes natural resources.

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More on Pennsylvania Water

The  Pennsylvania Study on Well Water Quality can be found here:  From Page 11

Contamination rates in raw well water were similar between MWON volunteer wells and homeowner wells so they have been lumped together for reporting here. Overall, approximately 41 percent of the wells tested failed to meet at least one of the health-based drinking water standards. Of these wells, most (89 percent) failed only one of the drinking water standards.

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