Heartland Institute Research Fellow Isaac Orr and Jessica Sena discuss a new Sierra Club video “Fracking 101,” which by many accounts is one of the most deceptive videos ever made on the topic.
Author: Isaac Orr
Smoking, obesity, exposure to toxic chemicals: Which of these factors do you think plays the biggest role in determining how deadly prostate cancer will be in a given situation? The correct answer is none of them. The most life-threatening factor in prostate cancer is poverty, coupled with a lack of access to electricity. This condition, called “energy poverty” by the World Bank, is the reason all illnesses – including prostate cancer – are far more devastating to people in poor nations than in the developed world.
Research Fellow Isaac Orr and Jessica Sena from the Montana Petroleum Association discuss some of the challenges associated with the “growing pains” of increasing oil and natural gas production in the United States, and some of the potential solutions, including building more pipelines.
On Nov. 2, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its “2014 Summary for Policymakers.” This report has been described as the starkest warning yet about the need to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions or face “the chaos of runaway climate change,” despite the scientific fact there has been no significant increase in the average global temperature since 1998.
The North Dakota oil boom is over. At least that was one of the recurring talking points at the North Dakota Petroleum Council’s (NDPC) annual meeting in Dickinson, North Dakota about a month ago. As the oil field has matured, life in the Bakken has started to become “more normal.” This shift has caused policymakers and local residents to change the way they talk about economic growth; as the boom has turned to bustle, the term “boom” has been replaced by “sustained growth.”
Make no mistake, everything we do has an environmental impact, and frac sand mining is no exception. But to exaggerate the costs and ignore the benefits is dishonest. Wisconsin can take reasonable precautions to develop frac sand resources in an environmentally responsible way and continue to enjoy the benefits of creating thousands of high-paying jobs throughout the state.
Halloween is upon us, and once again opponents of frac sand mining are trying to scare people in Wisconsin and other parts of the Upper Midwest by producing one-sided studies based on unscientific, anecdotal evidence (which is subject to cherry-picking and other biases) to back their claims. Fortunately, the scariest claims these organizations have made about the potential public health impacts of frac sand mining are not supported by the scientific data, and in many cases the data suggest just the opposite.
Champagne wishes and caviar dreams are coming true thanks to a government policy called net metering, which allows wealthy environmentalists who have installed solar panels on their roofs to profit unfairly at the expense of economically-disadvantaged people who can’t afford the technology themselves.
A new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) confirms what many small-government environmentalists have been saying for years: States are more effective at regulating the disposal of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing operations than is the Environmental Protection Agency.
To ensure the quality of the education provided to students, the Texas State Board of Education has begun the process of updating its textbooks to reflect the latest information and advancements in history and science, because part of giving kids the best education possible means giving them access to the best resources available.
In rural areas, there is often a heated debate over economic development that essentially boils down to a choice between industrial jobs and tourism jobs. Both come with advantages and disadvantages, but to pit these two sectors against each other in an either-or discussion is a false dichotomy. My hometown provides a good example of how industry and tourism can coexist.
Hydraulic fracturing, also known as “fracking,” is a technique for recovering oil and natural gas from shale rock formations once too costly to develop. The use of fracking is sweeping the nation, resulting in a surge in production that has made the U.S. the single-largest producer of both oil and natural gas in the world, a feat that was unthinkable just a decade ago.
Ohio sits above the Utica and Marcellus shales, two geologic formations that have rich energy potential waiting to be unlocked by the process of hydraulic fracturing, commonly referred to as “fracking.” Increased energy production has the potential to be a powerful economic engine for unemployed Ohioans, but the debate over hydraulic fracturing has served to highlight the natural and political fault lines running through the state.
Almost every day we hear about severe weather events—wildfires in Colorado, droughts in California, polar vortexes in Wisconsin. Often we are told it’s all our fault, that the carbon dioxide we release into the atmosphere by driving our cars, having a summer campfire, even when we exhale, is causing dangerous climate change. And regardless of whether the evidence supports these claims or not—we must change our ways, we are told.
Have you ever been shopping for a computer and felt like the salesman used “tech-talk” and a lot of words you didn’t understand just to confuse you so he could “up-sell” you on the “latest” and most expensive features? The Obama Administration and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are employing this tactic and other sorts of “used-car-salesman” tricks in an attempt to sell the public on expensive and unpopular regulations that would require existing electricity power plants to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions by 30 percent of 2005 base-levels by the year 2030. It’s a smog-and-mirrors trick, nothing more.
In our world of laptops, iPads, flat-screen TVs, microwaves, and jet-skis, it is easy to forget that 1.3 billion people on this planet, nearly one in five overall, do not have access to electricity. Even fewer people have access to clean cooking areas, as 2.6 billion people (38 percent of the world’s population) use traditional biomass—such as wood and animal dung—or coal indoors to cook their meals. As a result, indoor air pollution prematurely claims 3.5 million lives every year, more than double the lives claimed by either malaria or HIV/AIDS. These people are victims of energy poverty.
U.S. oil and natural gas production has skyrocketed in recent years thanks to hydraulic fracturing, a technology that allows engineers to access deep-underground resources from rock formations once too expensive to develop. This technology has made the United States the largest producer of natural gas in the world and on track to surpass Saudi Arabia as the leading producer of oil by 2015. The entire U.S. public benefits from this inexpensive domestic source of fuel.
Although many people, spurred by the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, think “going green” means using less carbon dioxide, plants prefer just the opposite.
We all know plants need carbon dioxide to breathe, but many don’t know plants turn that carbon dioxide into carbon in the form of the roots, stems, trunks, branches, leaves, and fruit with which we are more familiar. And according to a new study by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, the more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the greener the planet gets.
Relationships fascinate us. Americans are always picking up the latest issue of their favorite magazine or clicking on that random pop-up website that promises five easy secrets to a satisfying[…]