Monday, May 19, 2014

'The Extreme Hydrocarbon Survey', Will Make Toxic Invisible Oil and Gas Emissions Visible.

There are a lot of ways at looking at the world. There’s the obvious realm of light and shadow. The basic shapes that the naked eye perceives, but there’s also an entirely different perspective; a dynamically alternate reality lurking just below the surface. Hidden patterns, unseen infrastructures, an invisible universe, governed not by light and dark, but by cold and hot. This is infrared thermal imaging and it gives us the power to see the invisible. - FLIR


Extreme Hydrocarbon Survey

Making the invisible, visible…

Background: Colorado is currently home to over 51,000 active oil and gas wells with the industry prepared to drill an additional 50,000 more wells over the next two decades. While enjoying a range of specific exemption carve-outs from the Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act and particularly the Clean Air Act regarding hydrocarbon emission releases each fracked well and unit is deemed a ‘minor non-point source’ of pollution. Not evaluated cumulatively, oil and gas production is federally exempt from the emission standards that every other industry has to follow. Due to these unique exemptions, each well-pad can release hundreds of tons of harmful hydrocarbon emissions per year. Spread over more than 50,000 wells, this equates to billions of tons of noxious often endocrine disrupting chemicals such as methane, benzene, butane, hexane and dozens of others that are legally allowed to be released into and harm Colorado’s environment every day. The trespass of these generally unmonitored emissions affect fish and wildlife including many ostensibly protected habitats and endangered species--as well as cattle, agricultural crops and all living things that now have no choice but to respire these toxins. The Extreme Hydrocarbon Survey will also be conducted in Pennsylvania, California, New York and other affected states.

Objective: To visually record and capture hydrocarbon emissions data on specific oil and gas well sites located throughout the recent flood zones along the swollen Platte River and tributaries in Weld County as well as throughout the western slope of Colorado Rocky Mountains in Garfield and Mesa Counties. This survey will focus on areas of special concern such as but not limited to Colorado rivers and riparian systems; state and federal lands parks and wildlife refuges; public schools and universities; retirement communities and hospitals; and other sensitive areas in the regions being impacted by encroaching oil and gas development. We will utilize the data to help alert and inform citizens living throughout these areas about both the legal and fugitive hydrocarbon emissions they are being subject to regularly. By assembling and presenting this data across several media platforms, we will be able to clearly illustrate the danger caused by these cumulative emissions and their adverse impacts to the environment and human health.

Education & Outreach: Once the data is assembled, we will initiate a secondary educational and public outreach campaign designed to explain the data in public forums. Our presentations will have a primary focus on Colorado, but will expand through repeated visits to regions in New York, California and Pennsylvania that are or could be affected by oil and gas development as well. Collectively the data showing the cumulative affects of government sanctioned extreme hydrocarbon development will be publicly shared to inform impacted communities. Once empowered with information, communities will better be able to organize around the data we acquire to protect their environment through the use of EHS’s protocols and programs. EHS will collect information from all events and continue the educational process by building a nationwide membership and resource base. Natural gas and oil producing communities throughout the U.S. will be further empowered through multi-faceted, comparative educational materials, a series of public speaking events and community forums, on-line resources and databases and through a network of informed and empowered individuals who together will be better able to enact positive change.

Thank you Patagonia for your generous donation!


Independent laboratory (third party) testing confirms that the GasFindIR cameras can see the following gases at the minimum detected leak rate (MDLR):

1-Pentene - 5.6g/hr
Benzene - 3.5g/hr
Butane -0.4g/hr
Ethane - 0.6g/hr
Ethanol - 0.7g/hr
Ethylbenzene - 1.5g/hr
Ethylene - 4.4g/hr
Heptane - 1.8g/hr
Hexane - 1.7g/hr
Isoprene - 8.1g/hr
MEK - 3.5g/hr
Methane - 0.8g/hr
Methanol - 3.8g/hr
MIBK - 2.1g/hr
Octane - 1.2g/hr
Pentane - 3.0g/hr
Propane - 0.4g/hr
Propylene - 2.9g/hr
Toluene - 3.8g/hr 
Xylene - 1.9g/hr

Help us protect the environment and communities all across America!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

**NEW COLORADO ANTI-FRACKING FILM** 'Dear Governor Hickenlooper' Premiers at Mountain Film Festival this May!

Dear Governor Hickenlooper

Inspired by the 2013 Mountainfilm selection Dear Governor Cuomo, this compiling by Colorado creatives follows Shane Davis (a.k.a. The Fractivist) as he guides us through a series of vignettes. These stories were collected from the state’s filmmakers, farmers, skiers, activists and concerned citizens and use both science and emotional appeal to explain why fracking is problematic in Colorado.

This confident and brash film incorporates work from some previous Mountainfilm contributors, including Suzan Beraza (Bag It and Uranium Drive-In, Mountainfilm 2009 and 2013), Alexandria Bombach (“MoveShake” series and Common Ground), Pete McBride (Chasing Water and The Water Tower, Mountainfilm 2011 and 2013), Jeff Orlowski (Chasing Ice, Mountainfilm 2012) and Scott Upshur (The Local’s Bite, Mountainfilm 2012).


See you there!

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