Hickenlooper on Frakin’ Frack Fluid

I was surprised to learn from my governor here in Colorado that he believes ANY fracking fluid would be safe. It’s not just what goes down the hole, it’s the quality of water coming back up that will be contaminated, just like any other “produced water.” It’s important industry wants to minimize what goes down the well.

Despite what you might have heard, I much prefer drinking beer to frack fluid.

For the uninitiated, “frack fluid” is the liquid product oil and gas developers use in deep underground drilling operations. It is mostly water, but includes other ingredients and chemicals that are designed to open up oil and gas deposits and be recovered in the drilling process.

Knowing what’s in the fluid and making sure the ingredients are known to the public is what prompted us to pass the most rigorous and transparent frack fluid disclosure rule in the country about a year ago. We negotiated that rule with industry and the environmental community (including the Environmental Defense Fund).

Our goal has been to encourage industry to use ingredients that are safe for the environment. So when an industry executive came to my office over a year ago touting the safety of their product – a new form of frack fluid based on food additives – we put him to the test by asking whether it was safe to drink. He said yes. So I challenged him to take a sip. He did, and so did I.

I can’t say it tasted good, but it was, as advertised, a completely safe product for human consumption. (This is not to imply that anyone would drink the frack fluid being used today).

As we move forward in developing energy, we ought to insist on the strictest and most effective environmental safeguards.

Although tasting frack fluid might seem newsworthy to some, it was not really the point of testimony we recently gave to the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources in Washington, D.C. We were drawing attention to the fact that Colorado has created the most comprehensive and stringent set of regulations around oil and gas production in the country.

If you are interested in what went on there, please take a moment to click on this link (and go to 48:45) and let me know what you think.

Thanks,
John Hickenlooper

Colorado Ranked 4th Nationwide in Clean Energy Jobs

Colorado ranked fourth in new clean energy and clean transportation jobs during the third quarter, according to a new report from Environmental Entrepreneurs, a nonpartisan business group based in Washington, D.C.

The group looked at job announcements across the nation and counted more than 18,000 new clean energy jobs announced during the quarter, up from the previous quarter as well as a year ago. It issued its “Clean Energy Works for Us” jobs report on Thursday. The report is available here.

During the second quarter of 2014, the group counted more than 12,000 job announcements. During the third quarter of 2013, nearly 15,000 jobs were announced, the group said.

Denver Business Journal

Findings on Fukushima Radioactivity: No Risk to Health

The Fukushima Dai-ichi NPP accident contaminated the soil of densely populated regions in Fukushima Prefecture with radioactive cesium, which poses significant risks of internal and external exposure to the residents. If we apply the knowledge of post-Chernobyl accident studies, internal exposures in excess of a few mSv/y would be expected to be frequent in Fukushima.

Extensive whole-body-counter surveys (n F 32,811) carried out at the Hirata Central Hospital between October 2011 and November 2012, however show that the internal exposure levels of residents are much lower than estimated. In particular, the first sampling-bias-free assessment of the internal exposure of children in the town of Miharu, Fukushima, shows that the 137Cs body burdens of all children (n F 1,383, ages 6–15, covering 95% of children enrolled in town-operated schools) were below the detection limit of 300 Bq/body in the fall of 2012. These results are not conclusive for the prefecture as a whole, but are consistent with results obtained from other municipalities in the prefecture, and with prefectural data.

Read the Full Report Here
Keywords: Fukushima Dai-ichi NPP accident, radioactive cesium, whole-body counting,
committed effective dose

Die Bundesregierung handelt dumm

For a culture so steeped in logic and science, it’s surprising Germany has made the most expensive and silly decision concerning its energy independence. Not only will retiring their nuclear power fleet cost them ~$1.5 TRILLION, they will be forced to purchase electricity from neighboring countries such as France, which will continue to generate almost all of its baseload via safe, clean, affordable nuclear power.

Dummkopfs!

NUCLEAR POLICIES: Trillion-euro cost of German energy transition
Germany’s plan to transform its energy system to one reliant on renewable power as it phases out nuclear energy could cost up to €1 trillion, German energy and environment minister Peter Altmaier has publicly admitted.