After a brief debate the NC Senate has passed an energy bill that sets up offshore drilling and fracking for natural gas in NC. The bill, S709, was sold as a jobs bill.
In selling it, supporters managed to bring up 9/11 and somehow spin it as a positive that NC will get the same kind of deal as the Gulf States. Also in the debate it was mentioned that before the BP spill last year there had never been a major spill (huh?). In the zombie lies department, Senator Bob Rucho re-animated the idea that spills are nowhere near the volume as ocean floor seepage.
This oft-used talking point was thoroughly debunked during the Deepwater Horizon spill.
From an article by Dr. Cutler J. Cleveland, a Professor in the Department of Geography and Environment at Boston University, in the Oil Drum:
The Deepwater Horizon site releases 3 to 12 times the oil per day compared to that released by natural seeps across the entire Gulf of Mexico. By May 30, the Deepwater Horizon site had released between 468,000 and 741,000 barrels of oil, compared to 60,000 to 150,000 barrels from natural seeps across the entire Gulf of Mexico over the same 39 day period.
Natural seeps are not constantly active; the volume of oil released can vary considerably throughout the day and from day to day. As a result, only a small area around the source is actually exposed to “fresh” non-degraded oil, which is its most toxic state.
On fracking, the Indy’s Lisa Sorg has a post up on the new Duke University study of areas in Pennsylvania that have been experiencing it first-hand.
“Essentially, the closer you are to a natural gas well, the more likely you are to have methane in your well,” said Rob Jackson, one of the scientists involved in the study. “What surprised me was the consistency of the results.”