Posts Tagged With: natural gas

Oregon’s Next Huge Earthquake: Not If, But When….


The clock is ticking on the next big earthquake in the Pacific Northwest, and experts fear it will be a monster

 

Following the deadly magnitude-9.0 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan in March 2011, Oregon legislators commissioned a study of the impact a similar quake could have on the state, according to the Associated Press.
The report, “Oregon Resilience Plan: Reducing Risk and Improving Recovery for the Next Cascadia Earthquake and Tsunami,” was presented to legislators Thursday (March 14).
Within its pages is a chilling picture of death and destruction that would cripple the entire Pacific Northwest, from Northern California to British Columbia.
More than 10,000 people led. Bridges, dams, roadways and buildings — including Oregon’s State Capitol in Eugene — in a state of utter collapse. No water, electricity, natural gas, heat, telephokilne service or gasoline — in some cases, for months. Economic losses in excess of $30 billion.

The seismically active region has felt temblors before, most notably a massive earthquake and tsunami in January 1700 that wiped out entire forests in what is now Oregon and Washington and caused a deadly tsunami in Japan, thousands of miles across the Pacific Ocean. [Waves of Destruction: History’s Biggest Tsunamis]
“This earthquake will hit us again,” Kent Yu, chair of the commission that developed the report, told Oregon legislators, according to the Daily Mail. “It’s just a matter of how soon.”
That titanic 1700 shaker was a megathrust earthquake on the Cascadia Fault, a seismic zone that stretches for almost 700 miles (1,100 kilometers) just off the Pacific Northwest coast. Based on current understanding of the fault’s seismic history, scientists estimate quakes occur along the line roughly every 240 years.
In other words, another big Cascadia Fault earthquake is “long overdue,” the International Science Times reports.
The report also noted that, geologically speaking, Japan and Oregon are mirror images of each other. There is, however, one important difference: Japan is much more prepared for earthquakes.
And Oregon is hardly the only region of North America overdue for a large earthquake: The Lake Tahoe region on the California-Nevada border is home to the West Tahoe Fault, which generally sees a quake every 3,000 to 4,000 years, and the most recent temblor occurred 4,500 years ago.
Elsewhere in California, the southern San Andreas Fault last produced a big temblor in 1690, and has been relatively quiet ever since. That isn’t good news, since a major earthquake usually occurs there every 180 years, according to recent research, and the fault line now has more than 300 years of pressure built up.
Whereas the West Coast is usually considered the most seismically active region of North America, the East Coast also has earthquakes, just not as often. Fault lines have recently been discovered near New York City, and the Indian Point nuclear power plant, about 24 miles (39 km) north of the city, straddles the previously unidentified intersection of two active seismic zones.
In virtually all of these regions, preparation for earthquakes has been woefully inadequate, say many experts. Maree Wacker, chief executive officer of the American Red Cross of Oregon, laments the state of readiness: “Oregonians as individuals are underprepared,” Wacker told the Daily Mail.

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Success of U.S. Fracking Could Neuter OPEC……


WASHINGTON — The success of American drillers in coaxing fossil fuels from shale rock has the potential to boost production so much that it may deny OPEC the power to set global oil and gasoline prices, an intelligence advisory panel concluded.

Rising domestic production from hydraulic fracturing is expanding U.S. supplies, which would shift the balance of power in global energy markets, according to the report by the National Intelligence Council released Monday. The council, an adviser to the director of national intelligence, publishes a report every four years to aid policymakers’ long-term planning.

As the United States adds supply, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ influence over prices would wane, according to the report that echoes previous studies that project benefits from a drill process also known as fracking.

“In a tectonic shift, energy independence is not unrealistic for the U.S. in as short a period as 10-20 years,” the report states.

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Obama ‘Punting’ on New EPA Rules Until Post-Election……


The report from the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works’ Minority Staff, “A Look Ahead to EPA Regulations for 2013,” points to a “slew of job-killing EPA regulations that the Obama-EPA has put on hold until after the election but will be on the ‘to-do’ list for 2013.”
“As the economy has continued to falter over the past year, team Obama has been delaying rule after rule that will eliminate American jobs, drive up the price of gas at the pump even more, impose construction bans on local communities, and essentially shut down American oil, natural gas, and coal production. They don’t want this economic pain to hit American families just before the election because it would cost President Obama votes.”
The report goes on to state: “It’s pretty clear that if President Obama secures a second term, the Obama-EPA will have a very busy next four years, moving full speed ahead to implement numerous major rules and regulations that he has delayed or punted due to the upcoming election.
“The radical environmental left may not need to worry, but what about American families, who are working hard in tough economic times, trying to make ends meet?
“As the nation struggles to recover from a lagging economy in the coming year, Americans could also be grappling with a regulatory onslaught from the Obama-EPA that will strangle economic growth, destroy millions of jobs, and dramatically raise the price of goods, the cost of electricity, and the price of gas at the pump.”
The “punted” regulations include:
Greenhouse gas rules that will “virtually eliminate coal as a fuel option for future electric power generation,” and inflict new permitting costs on more than 37,000 farms. New ozone standards that would cost $90 billion a year. Regulations on hydraulic fracturing that will have “serious impacts on domestic energy production.” Expansion of federal control “over virtually every body of water in the United States, no matter how small.” Storm water regulations that could include “mandates on cities to change existing buildings, storm water sewers, and streets.” Reductions in the sulfur content in gasoline that could boost prices by 9 cents a gallon. Clean Water Act rules that “could require expensive new construction at power plants to lower fish deaths.” Other regulations would affect coal ash, farm dust, oil and gasoline spill prevention, and more.
“This report is a wake-up call on the economic pain that the ‘abusive’ Obama-EPA plans to inflict next year,” said Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma, ranking member on the committee.
“It reveals a president who is more concerned about saving his own job than the millions of Americans who are looking for one today.”

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