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The judge has ordered that all drilling be suspended until a plan of action is submitted and accepted

The Obama administration is in a bit of hot water for failing to conduct an environmental impact report before allowing permits for fracking in central California. 

U.S. District Judge Paul Grewal in San Jose ruled that the federal government violated U.S. environmental law by declining to perform an environmental impact study on fracking in the Monterey Formation. 

Fracking is the injection of pressurized sand, water, and chemicals into shale formations, triggering the release of oil and natural gas. It's not a new method of extraction, but combining it with horizontal drilling has taken onshore U.S. energy to a new level.

The problem is, fracking could have a negative impact on the environment -- especially fracking on groundwater. Environmentalists also say that fracking doesn't help the greenhouse gas situation, which scientists say is responsible for global warming.

The Obama administration is interested in two tracts of land on the Monterey Shale Formation (a huge bed of sedimentary rock in Monterey County, California). The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that there are over 15 billion barrels of oil in the 2,500 acres designated for drilling in the Monterey Formation.

While a combination of fracking and horizontal drilling is the best way to retrieve the oil, the Obama administration leased the land without conducting the proper environmental impact study. Hence, the judge has ordered that all drilling be suspended until a plan of action is submitted and accepted.

"The potential risk for contamination from fracking, while unknown, is not so remote or speculative to be completely ignored," Grewal wrote.

Just last month, a team of scientists said oil waste caused a record Oklahoma earthquake (5.7 magnitude) that occurred in 2011. The team said this was uncharacteristic of this area, and that fracking creates seismic instability and may contaminate local water supplies.

However, paid-off politicians are working to keep fracking alive in the area because it generates a load of cash. 

Another study in 2012 said the same thing. The U.S. Geological Survey reports that for the three decades until the year 2000, seismic events across the middle of the nation averaged only 21 per year. Then in 2009, events increased to 50 per year. They then jumped to 87 per year in 2010 and then 134 in 2011. Some are pointing to fracking as the reason for the increase in seismic events across the middle of the United States.

Source: Yahoo News

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By Argon18 on 4/9/2013 3:49:01 PM , Rating: 5
It's funny how Obama can drill for oil, and skip the environmental impact assessment, yet the story goes completely unreported in the mainstream news. You won't see it on the evening news when you go home tonight, since Big-O is the media darling.

W, on the other hand, would have been blasted on every news station, with "expert" guest speakers and talking heads all lambasting the evil Bush administration for their environmental neglect, and wanton and illegal destruction of the environment.

Oh American Media, how hypocritical thou art.

RE: Funny
By Spuke on 4/9/2013 4:02:03 PM , Rating: 5
Don't know why you got rated down. It's true.

RE: Funny
By RedemptionAD on 4/10/2013 10:54:51 AM , Rating: 2
An inconvenient truth?

RE: Funny
By superflex on 4/9/2013 4:17:16 PM , Rating: 4
There's an unnamed few around here who do nothing but down rate posts that speak ill of the Messiah.

RE: Funny
By Ammohunt on 4/9/2013 5:40:08 PM , Rating: 3
I will name them Mao, Stalin, Castro, Che and Marx.

RE: Funny
By espaghetti on 4/9/2013 9:20:15 PM , Rating: 2
Marx realized he was wrong at the end of his life.
The rest were evil for using his ideas on their masses.

RE: Funny
By MadMan007 on 4/10/2013 12:44:40 AM , Rating: 3

There's an unnamed few around here who do nothing but down rate posts that speak well of the Messiah.

RE: Funny
By KCjoker on 4/9/2013 6:04:27 PM , Rating: 3
It would be funny if it weren't true...sadly it is. Oh and before anyone else tells're clearly a racist for saying anything bad about Obama and his cronies.

RE: Funny
By mikeyD95125 on 4/9/2013 6:23:55 PM , Rating: 2
What's the problem?

The administration was just trying to ignore California's strict environmental regulations to quickly and efficiently open up economic opportunities for private industry.

Sounds like what you conservatives have clamoring about for years. I applaud to Obama administration for clearing a path through the bureaucracy in order to get this country back on its way energy independence, and ultimately freedom.

God bless America!

RE: Funny
By MadMan007 on 4/9/13, Rating: 0
RE: Funny
By Nfarce on 4/9/2013 9:37:07 PM , Rating: 2
Well that's the irony of it. Kind of like how Republicans get caught with their pants down, literally, in mischievous sexual affairs...while touting to speak for the conservative "family values" masses. Democrats don't run on such a platform so it's okay for them to be cheats and sex maniacs, from Clinton on down.

We have Obama essentially doing the same thing from a conservative/Republican side now. He is doing things against what he ran as and stood for in the liberal masses. And the media isn't calling him out on it, nor are his followers.

That's the problem.

RE: Funny
By Nfarce on 4/9/2013 9:39:32 PM , Rating: 2
Oh and one other thing: the "Obama hate" whining is getting rather old. Just because we disagree with the man does not mean we "hate" him any more than it means we are a "racist" against him. Grow up, liberals.

RE: Funny
By MadMan007 on 4/10/2013 12:47:24 AM , Rating: 2
Obama may have spoken more about alternative energy during the campaign, but his position has really always been one of utilizing all energy sources. The reason he seems so 'far left' to so many people is because they are so far right that even moderate positions are far left to them.

RE: Funny
By BRB29 on 4/10/2013 7:54:26 AM , Rating: 2
In the other fracking article, people comments fracking is not a big deal and has no environmental impact. In this article, with the word obama in it, fracking sounds like it's our doomsday.

RE: Funny
By Dug on 4/9/2013 7:48:28 PM , Rating: 4
True, but the real problem is putting Obama or Bush's name in this at all, when in reality it probably didn't even show up as a blip on what either of them had to deal with each day.

Instead of saying Obama or Bush's administration, why don't they call out the actual people making the decisions or mistakes instead of making it a political thread.

RE: Funny
By BRB29 on 4/10/2013 8:04:21 AM , Rating: 3
It spun to sound like a political blunder. The Obama administration did not approve this. This was approved by the Department of the Interior and the president probably did not even see it or hear about it.

If anything, out of every president, obama is the most pro-environment and anti-fracking. The USGS national research program will actually receive funding for the first time to research fracking. Obama actually specifically asked for this. This is going to be a big project for the USGS NRP in FY 2014.
How do I know? I work here at the DOI USGS NRP EB in Reston VA

RE: Funny
By R!TTER on 4/10/2013 11:36:38 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah funny isn't it, fracking is a man made disaster & yet here in America there is no such thing as global warming! I guess loads of sheeple don't like to crack their head watching hours of documentary besides the fact that it portrays their favorite gas guzzlers as modern abomination aka "Teufel in Menschengestalt" /end rant.

RE: Funny
By room200 on 4/10/2013 11:47:50 PM , Rating: 2
Wait a minute; I thought Obama was an anti-business, tree-hugging, socialist who was holding back drilling for oil and other "plentiful" resources here in the US? Make up your minds.

wth is Obama drilling for?
By TheEinstein on 4/9/13, Rating: 0
RE: wth is Obama drilling for?
By Manch on 4/9/2013 3:09:20 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe he plans on opening a chain of gas stations when he gtfo of office? Yeah, this is a bit puzzling. It just could be her writing too.

By spamreader1 on 4/9/2013 3:22:39 PM , Rating: 2
The government doesn't drill for oil, companies get clearances from the government (usually several federal, state, etc.) before they can drill and/or extract oil (any underground material).

RE: wth is Obama drilling for?
By MadMan007 on 4/9/2013 3:53:47 PM , Rating: 4
Reading comprehension fail. The federal government leases mineral and drilling rights to companies, it doesn't drill for resources itself. It clearly says that in the article a few times even if you didn't know that before.

RE: wth is Obama drilling for?
By Manch on 4/9/2013 5:26:20 PM , Rating: 1
The article does not read in the same context as before. This is the second article she has posted today where she's made changes and altered the context after somebody commented. Also like the other article an @$$hat like you came in and made some jack@$$ remarks having only read the revised article.

RE: wth is Obama drilling for?
By BRB29 on 4/10/2013 8:30:22 AM , Rating: 2
Calm down. We should all know that federal government doesn't actually drill for oil.
If you read the original article from yahoonews, it says DOI approved this in 2011. The DOI doesn't have to ask obama to hand out drilling rights.
Regardless of how bad the translation and how many errors were corrected, I hope people would do a little research before they jump the gun and get on the anti-obama bandwagon.

RE: wth is Obama drilling for?
By Manch on 4/10/2013 8:59:05 AM , Rating: 2
I didn't jump on a band wagon and I even acknowledge it was probably her writing. The guy I replied to is just being an @$$.

RE: wth is Obama drilling for?
By MadMan007 on 4/10/2013 9:14:25 AM , Rating: 2
I might have been being an ass, but you were being completely stupid. If something sounds so outrageous to make you wonder 'wth is the GOVERNMENT drilling for?' maybe it's best to do a wee bit of research before posting about it. Chances are the outrageous sounding thing isn't true, or is more nuanced than what you presume or the way it's presented.

RE: wth is Obama drilling for?
By Manch on 4/11/2013 1:50:45 AM , Rating: 1
I didn't write that dumb fuck. At least we agree you're being an ass.

Tiffany, try to be objective
By Dorkyman on 4/9/2013 7:00:45 PM , Rating: 2
Fracking does not hurt groundwater. Numerous studies have shown this. All the action occurs far, far, below the water tables, separated by great distance and impermeable rock. Those that claim otherwise are doing so in the name of their religion--they cannot and will not be swayed by facts.

The movie that showed how one could light tap water conveniently forgot to mention that one could light tap water at that location years before any drilling took place. It's because there was/is a lot of dissolved methane in the water.

Please don't allow zealots to influence your writing.

RE: Tiffany, try to be objective
By Noonecares on 4/9/13, Rating: 0
RE: Tiffany, try to be objective
By superflex on 4/10/2013 4:03:09 PM , Rating: 1
You've obviously never seen the working end of a drill rig have you? Probably never worked a day in your life out in the field.
You read a wiki entry about fracking fluid and immediately assume the same fracking fluid is used to lubricate the borehole. Drilling mud is not fracking fluid. Drilling mud is a water based mixture of sodium bentonite and a polymer and is non toxic.
Please educate yourself before running your verbal diarrhea again.
Your internet degree in environmental studies just got revoked

RE: Tiffany, try to be objective
By mike66 on 4/9/13, Rating: 0
By StevoLincolnite on 4/10/2013 12:14:17 AM , Rating: 2
Don't forget about the mining companies who are ruining our land by dumping all their rubbish and toxic substances in serene area's then simply burying them.

RE: Tiffany, try to be objective
By MadMan007 on 4/10/2013 12:52:41 AM , Rating: 2
It's far too early in the development of fracking to make conclusive statements yet. The long-term effects on the environment are also unpredictable. It's best to keep an open mind and be rational about information as it comes out rather than take a predetermined stance that won't change.

RE: Tiffany, try to be objective
By BRB29 on 4/10/2013 8:38:20 AM , Rating: 2
Fracking theoretically sounds fantastic. But so far, all the people telling you that works for these companies. There has not been an independent study on fracking yet. Don't worry, you will see results by the end of 2014 because the USGS will field scientists and collect water and soil samples on fracking sites and surrounding areas. They will also research about fracking and earthquakes.

So far, the only thing we know about fracking is that it has a high correlation with earthquakes in the area such as Oklahoma. That is done by statistics because well....because it's impossible to find exact reason why an earthquake go off. Else, we'd be able to predict it already.

RE: Tiffany, try to be objective
By MadMan007 on 4/10/2013 9:17:39 AM , Rating: 2
I also understand that companies will be required to disclose the chemical makeup of their fracking solution. I understand the competitive reasons to want to keep the formulas proprietary, although I seriously doubt the ability to truly do so, but when we're talking about adding stuff that is potentially harmful to deep groundwater the benefits of disclosure take precedence.

RE: Tiffany, try to be objective
By BRB29 on 4/10/2013 9:54:51 AM , Rating: 2
i agree with you. I do believe fracking leads to harmful effects to the environment. Pretty much anything we do does. The question is how much. All this BS about impermeable sediment layers blahblahblah is just wrong. We all know nothing is impermeable. Have we not learned anything from all the containment problems of radioactive wastes?

Anyways, I am looking forward to the results of my coworkers.

Is that a fact?
By jrpros on 4/9/2013 3:09:02 PM , Rating: 4
However, paid-off politicians are working to keep fracking alive in the area because it generates a load of cash.

This might be true, but I think I missed your references.

RE: Is that a fact?
By Flunk on 4/9/2013 3:19:56 PM , Rating: 4
You haven't been reading this site for long have you?

RE: Is that a fact?
By Manch on 4/9/13, Rating: 0
RE: Is that a fact?
By Decom on 4/10/2013 9:51:09 AM , Rating: 2
My God man, did you actually read the article properly :-

In March 2011, a 9.0-magnitude earthquake shook Japan and crippled the reactor at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. The earthquake led to the release of radioactive water, contamination of crops and of course, the thousands of lives lost.

RE: Is that a fact?
By MadMan007 on 4/10/2013 12:50:07 AM , Rating: 2
See those underlined words? They are called 'hyperlinks' and you can click on them to go to another webpage. You should try it, you'll be amazed!

"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay

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