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League of Women Voters of Washington County, AR

Fayetteville Shale Play/Hydraulic Fracturing Resources

Originally prepared by LWVWC in connection with the 2008 LWVAR Study on the Fayetteville Shale Play and updated for a 2013 LWVWC program on Shale Gas Economics

Index: Primary Natural Gas Companies Operating in Arkansas -- Natural Gas Regulatory Authorities and their Role -- Arkansas Organizations Concerned about Gas Development -- Basics - Drilling 101 -- Landowner Issues -- Water -- Air Pollution -- Waste Disposal and Earthquakes -- Health Impacts on Humans and Animals -- Economics and Severance Taxes -- Methane, Energy, and Global Warming -- Foreign Involvement -- Publications and Updated Archives -- Legislation -- LWV Natural Gas Action -- Blogs -- Documentary Films

Primary Natural Gas Companies Operating in Arkansas
  • Southwestern Energy Company. 886,695 net acres as of 12/31/09.
  • BHP Billiton Energy (leases purchased from Chesapeake Energy). 487,000 net acres as of 2/21/11.
  • XTO Energy. 55,631 net acres as of 4/3/08.
  • Natural Gas Regulatory Authorities and their Roles
  • Arkansas Oil & Gas Commission, Lawrence Bengal, Director.
    AOGC provides regulatory control over most aspects of development of the Fayetteville Shale Play. It is involved with seismic exploration, integration of leases/defining production units, drilling activities and construction standards, gathering lines (well to compressor), disposal of water, well completion and production reports, and well closure (dry hole or end-of-life). A Google map of every Arkansas gas and oil well's location, production, ownership, and status is at http://www.aogc.state.ar.us/Maps.htm. Waste infection wells are also mapped.
  • Arkansas Dept. of Environmental Quality, Teresa Marks, Director.
    ADEQ regulates the construction, use, and closure of reserve pits. Reserve pits are on the drilling site and are used for temporary storage of cutting material removed from the well bore during drilling operations.
    ADEQ is the permitting authority for the land application of drilling fluids. Although the oil and gas industry is exempt from permitting requirements associated with stormwater runoff for sites smaller than five acres, they are still required to prevent sediment runoff and remain subject to state laws regarding degradation of water quality. This is also a requirement in the general permit for reserve pits.
  • Arkansas Natural Resources Commission, Randy Young, Director.
    The ANRC is responsible for wellhead and groundwater protection. It is the permitting agency for construction of dams 25 feet or more in height. Arkansas Law mandates that all water development projects receive certification of compliance with the Arkansas Water Plan from the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission.
    Arkansas Law requires all diverters of surface water (streams, lakes, ponds, etc.) to register their diversion of surface water by quantity, location, type of use and name of user on an annual basis with ARNC. Exceptions to this rule are withdrawals of less than one acre-foot a year, diffused surface water or those natural lakes or ponds in exclusive ownership of one person.
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Enforcer of environmental laws.
       --U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 6
       --Natural Gas Extraction - Hydraulic Fracturing
       --Hydraulic Fracturing Research Study (U.S. EPA Office of Research and Development). This document describes the motivation for this study "to help evaluate potential risks associated with hydraulic fracturing in the Agency’s efforts to protect America’s resources and communities." This document also defines hydraulic fracturing and describes the connection between water and hydraulic fracturing. More information on the study is here.
  • Arkansas Organizations Concerned about Gas Development
  • League of Women Voters of Washington County
        Contact: joycehale43@gmail.com
  • Arkansas Public Policy Panel
  • Arkansas Sierra Club
  • Friends of the North Fork and White Rivers
  • Stop Arkansas Fracking
  • Basics - Drilling 101
  • Arkansas in the Balance: Managing the Risks of Shale Gas Development in the Natural State (Arkansas Public Policy Panel, February 2011)
  • Hydraulic Fracturing 101 (Earthworks)
  • Finding the Balance: The Role of Natural Gas in America's Energy Future (Natural Resources Defense Council, updated January 2010)
  • VIDEO: Animation of Horizontal Drilling (Fracking) (OERB)
  • VIDEO: Investigating the US Gas Drilling Boom (theEcologistTV)
  • How Gas Wells Leak (James Northrup, 2013)
  • Landowner Issues

    Landowner Issues and Community Assistance
  • Oil and Gas at Your Door?: A Landowner’s Guide to Oil and Gas Development, Second Edition (Earthworks, The Oil and Gas Accountability Project, 2005)
  • Homeowners and Gas Drilling Leases: Boon or Bust? (Elizabeth Radow, NY State Bar Ass'n Journal, 2011)
  • NY Landowners Denied Homeowners Insurance Because of Gas Well (Marcellus Effect Blog, August 9, 2013)
  • Nondisclosure Agreements (AlterNet, May 8, 2013)
  • Fracking Informational Toolkit for Communities (Union of Concerned Scientists, 2013)
  • Water
  • Drill for Natural Gas, Pollute Water (Abrahm Lustgarten and ProPublica, Scientific American, November 17, 2008)
  • Concerns about Radioactive Wastewater (Abrahm Lustgarten and ProPublica, Scientific American, November 9, 2009)
  • VIDEO: Discussion of problems using high-volume slick-water horizontal hydraulic fracking (James Northrup)

    Air Pollution
  • Air Pollution and Natural Gas Operations: An Exploratory Study of Air Quality near Natural Gas Operations (Endocrine Disruption Exchange, 2012)
  • Bridge To Nowhere? NOAA Confirms High Methane Leakage Rate Up To 9% from Gas Fields, Gutting Climate Benefit (Joe Romm, ClimateProgress, January 2, 2013)
  • Waste Disposal and Earthquakes
  • Are Fracking Wastewater Wells Poisoning the Ground beneath Our Feet? (Abrahm Lustgarten, Scientific American, June 21, 2012)
  • Injection Wells Spawn Powerful Earthquakes (David Biello, Scientific American, July 12, 2013)
  • Health Impacts on Humans and Animals
  • Natural Gas Operations from a Public Health Perspective (Dr. Theo Colborn, Carol Kwiatkowski, Kim Schultz, and Mary Bachran, Human and International Risk Assessment: An International Journal, 2011).
  • The Fossil Fuel Connection (The Endocrine Disruption Exchange, August 25, 2010)
  • VIDEO: World-Renowned Scientist Dr. Theo Colborn on the Health Effects of Water Contamination from Fracking (Democracynow.org, April 14, 2010). Video, audio, MP3. Interview starts at minute 46:00
  • Natural Gas Flowback: How the Texas Natural Gas Boom Affects Health and Safety (Earthworks, Texas Oil & Gas Accountability Project, April 2011)
  • Fracking Concerns Turn to Worker Health Hazards and Potential Silica Exposure (Claire Wilkinson, Forbes, June 22, 2012)
  • The Dirty Truth Behind Clean Natural Gas (Paul Tolmé, National Wildlife Federation, May 14, 2010)
  • Cornell Study Links Fracking Wastewater with Mortality in Farm Animals (John Messeder, EcoWatch, January 16, 2012)
  • Gas Patch Roulette: How Shale Gas Development Risks Public Health in Pennsylvania (Earthworks, October 18, 2012)
  • Economics and Severance Taxes
  • VIDEO: LWVWC Program on Shale Gas Economics (Deborah Rogers, December 2013)
  • Projecting the Economic Impact of the Fayetteville Shale for 2008-2012: Executive Summary -- Full Report (U. of Ark., Center for Business and Economic Research, March 2008)
  • Estimates Clash for How Much Gas is in the United States (Mason Inman, National Geographic News, February 29, 2012)
  • After the Boom in Natural Gas (Krauss and Liption, N.Y. Times, October 20, 2012)
  • VIDEO: Drilling for Dollars (Deborah Rogers, 2012)
  • VIDEO: Learning from the U.S. Shale Gas Experience (Arthur Berman)
  • VIDEO: Debunking the Financial Myths of Shale Gas (Jannette Barth)
  • Methane, Energy, and Global Warming
  • Drill Baby Drill – Critical analysis on energy abundance (David Hughes, Post Carbon Institute, 2013)
  • Bridge To Nowhere? NOAA Confirms High Methane Leakage Rate Up To 9% From Gas Fields, Gutting Climate Benefit (Joe Romm, ClimateProgress, January 2, 2013)
  • Methane and the Greenhouse Gas Footprint of Natural Gas from Shale Formations: A Letter (Howarth et al., Climatic Change, 2011)
  • Foreign Involvement
  • Secret Trade Pact Between U.S., Europe Could Permit Foreign Ownership of Hazardous Facilities (Ed Brayton, Washington Independent, April 02, 2009)
  • Map of Countries with financial interest in U.S. gas leases and export facilities (Tribune-Review, 2012)
  • Publications with Updated Archives
  • ProPublica Online Natural Gas Articles. ProPublica's investigative reporting has intensively developed the topic over the last couple of years.
  • Truthout Archives on Natural Gas
  • Business Week Articles on Shale Gas
  • New York Times: Drilling Down Series (2011-2012), which examines risks of and efforts to regulate natural-gas drilling, and more articles on natural gas
  • Arkansas Times Archives on Natural Gas
  • Scientific American Archives on Natural Gas
  • Legislation
    STATE
  • Model Oil and Gas Laws: Regulations and Ordinances (Arkansas Public Policy Panel, March 2011)
  • 2013 Landowner Notification Act - Act 1299
  • FEDERAL
  • H.R.2766 Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals Act of 2009 (introduced 6/9/2009).
  • S.1215 Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals (FRAC) Act (introduced 6/9/2009).
  • S.3663 Clean Energy Jobs and Oil Company Accountability Act of 2010 (introduced 7/28/2010).
  • Highlights of 2005 Energy Bill (Summarized by Public Citizen)
  • LWV Natural Gas Action
    League of Women Voters of Arkansas 2008 Study
  • The League of Women Voters of Arkansas Study Concerning The New Phenomenon of Drilling for Natural Gas in our State
  • Materials Compiled for Fayetteville Shale Panel Forum Jan. 23, 2008
  • Fayetteville Shale Forum Q & A Exchange Between Audience and Panelists (LWVWC, Sierra Club, Jan. 23, 2008)
  • Fayetteville Shale Forum--Betty Pickett Responses (LWVWC, Sierra Club, Jan. 23, 2008)
    LWVUS 2010 Convention Resolution
  • Resolution on Safe Drilling and Mining for Energy Resources As Approved by the League of Women Voters 2010 National Convention
  • Blogs
  • TXSharon Bluedaze Drilling Reform
  • DeSmogBlog: Clearing the PR Pollution that Clouds Climate Science
  • Shale Shock
  • Documentary Films
  • Gasland I
  • Gasland II
  • Split Estate
  • Promised Land
  • Haynesville
  • Last updated Oct. 2013