# News How true/accurate is Gasland

1. Jun 23, 2010

### CAC1001

Was wondering if anyone knows how true/accurate this is or not? Documentaries like this can reveal some very important things I know, however they also can present blatant lies and distortions depending on the agenda of the filmmaker.

I figured I would post this in this forum since an issue like this obviously relates to policymaking.

2. Jul 19, 2011

### Pengwuino

Re: Gasland

I know I'm kinda necroposting this but it's only been a year and I'm interested!

Has anyone seen this film? Is it factual or mainly nonsense? A friend of mine is interested and says he wants to know if it's true that a large majority of Colorado's drinking water is now contaminated and undrinkable. So does anyone know anything about this documtnary?

3. Jul 19, 2011

### SixNein

Re: Gasland

I don't know, but I do know I love your signature.

4. Jul 20, 2011

### ThomasT

Re: Gasland

Your query piqued my interest so I watched as much of the documentary as I had time to do. I don't know if all it's claims are true, or if a large majority of Colorado's drinking water is contaminated and undrinkable, and, if so, what caused that.

It does seem logical to assume that underground water would mix somewhat with both the fracking fluids and the natural gas that's released as a result of fracking. But this is a question for geologists.

I'm not really concerned about it because virtually all of my time is spent either in Florida or Connecticut, neither of which are affected by fracking, as far as I know. However, if you're in Pennsylvania, then it might be an issue since there are apparently about 35K natural gas wells in that state. And there are quite a few other states with wells numbering in the thousands.

Below are some links (I Googled, "gasland debunked"), pro and con regarding the documentary:

http://www.kioga.org/communications/reports/GasLandDebunked.pdf/view [Broken]

http://www.damascuscitizens.org/Affirming-GASLAND.pdf

http://www.bseec.org/content/debunking-gasland [Broken]

http://txsharon.blogspot.com/2010/06/gasland-debunking-debunked.html

http://gaslandthemovie.com/

Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
5. Jul 23, 2011

### mheslep

Re: Gasland

This source seems authoritative, the State Of Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission: the film is error ridden and fraudulent.

http://cogcc.state.co.us/library/GASLAND%20DOC.pdf [Broken]
This one is unforgivable for a documentary on natural gas drilling:
In particular the guy shown in the trailer at ~2:20 lighting off his tap water was shown to be burning naturally leaking shallow (biogenic) gas, not fract. gas.

I thought there was some kind of civil law prevention of this kind of garbage? For instance, if I 'grabbed my camera' and 'traveled across the country' making up bogus claims about (say) meat w/ mad cow disease or the dangers of air travel I assumed I could be deservedly sued.

Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
6. Jul 25, 2011

### apeiron

Re: Gasland

The subject is a matter for study....
http://water.epa.gov/type/groundwater/uic/class2/hydraulicfracturing/index.cfm

There are plenty of people worried...
http://www.skynews.com.au/national/article.aspx?id=639652&vId=

The French have banned fracking...
http://www.scientificamerican.com/blog/post.cfm?id=france-bans-fracking-2011-06-30

But probably most conclusive is Halliburton thinks there's no problem.

7. Jul 25, 2011

### Pengwuino

Re: Gasland

The public's opinion and government opinions pretty much have as much weight for me as the people trying to profit off of it. I need to take some time to read the sources posted here.

8. Jul 25, 2011

### ThomasT

Re: Gasland

Isn't the documentary maker, Josh Fox, being sued by drillers and frackers and Halliburton and the sorts of authoritative governmental agencies that you cited?

Well, definitely compelling at least.

9. Jul 25, 2011

### apeiron

Re: Gasland

Googling did not produce any evidence that Fox is being sued.

There is an industry put-up lobby group as you might expect...
http://www.energyindepth.org/

And Josh Fox has answered his critics thus...
http://1trickpony.cachefly.net/gas/pdf/Affirming_Gasland_Sept_2010.pdf

10. Aug 18, 2011

### Pengwuino

Re: Gasland

Wow my friend is totally convinced there's a worldwide conspiracy to cover up entire states water supplies being contaminated and they can't drink the water anymore. He tells me it's not his job to show proof this is happening, it's my job to show it's not happening, and he's getting more and more annoying about it. And I really don't have time to learn about a whole subject just to teach him about it.... sigh.

11. Aug 18, 2011

### mheslep

Re: Gasland

Uh oh. Your friend's not a in charge of SAC base I hope?

Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2017
12. Jan 31, 2012

### Greg Bernhardt

Re: Gasland

Power necro'd! Just finished watching this. Junk or truth?

13. Jan 31, 2012

### Oltz

Re: Gasland

Mostly Junk and Hype.

Disclosure I work in the marcellus my degree is environmental geology.

14. Jan 31, 2012

### ThomasT

Re: Gasland

Well, one has to skeptical about the veracity of any documentary. There are dangers involved in fracking. But, apparently, those dangers can be adequately addressed with existing technology. Whether they will, always, be adequately addressed is another question. Whether fracking will prove to be a net positive or negative remains to be determined and any assessment will depend on what factors are accentuated.

15. Jan 31, 2012

### mheslep

16. Feb 1, 2012

### mheslep

Re: Gasland

I see the author / filmmaker of Gasland was arrested in a Congressional meeting room. He was apparently trying to set up and film, but couldn't be bothered with getting press credentials and refused to turn his camera off when asked.

17. Feb 1, 2012

### ThomasT

Re: Gasland

So who's the culprit there? A citizen for attempting to film what, imho, should be a public discussion, or the government for preventing him from doing so?

Whether large scale fracking can be entirely safely done is an unanswered question. What I don't like is what I see as industry and government attempts to bypass necessary safety requirements in the interest of projected monetary profits.

This is a scenario that's been repeated ad nauseum in America.

Last edited: Feb 1, 2012
18. Feb 1, 2012

### mheslep

Re: Gasland

Fox, the filmmaker.
It is a public discussion, open the public, but apparently there is simple rule that says if you want to enter the limited space of a conference room with a camera tripod and microphones and an HBO film crew you have get permission in advance. Fox did not. Why do you think that is?

What makes you think anything has been bypassed?

EPA[/PLAIN] [Broken] Proposes New Rules on Emissions Released by Fracking
EPA Revisiting, Announces Gaps in Dimock, PA Water Data‎
http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/277869/20120106/epa-revisiting-announces-gaps-dimock-pa-water.htm
Pennsylvania's Fracking Program Gets Mostly High Marks in Independent Review
http://www.reuters.com/article/2010/09/28/idUS266094130120100928
EPA takes new look at gas drilling, water issues
http://www.usatoday.com/tech/science/environment/2010-07-21-fracking_N.htm
Colorado oil and gas rules score high in outside review

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19. Feb 2, 2012

### ThomasT

Re: Gasland

Then we can respectfully disagree on that.
I suspect it's because he anticipated not getting permission. Why would he not get permission? Did the people involved in the proceedings have something to hide from the public? That would be my guess. Anyway, for all we know, he did ask for permission in advance and was denied.

Are you suggesting that the following are in any way comprehensive? I'm still reading them, but so far they don't seem too positive in favor of fracking.

Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
20. Feb 2, 2012

### ThomasT

Re: Gasland

Ok, I've read all that stuff and I'll stick with my statement that whether large scale fracking can, and will, be entirely safely done is an unanswered question. And it's my personal opinion, which might well be wrong, that the natural gas industry and the governments involved have a vested interest in bypassing necessary safety requirements in the interest of projected monetary profits.

21. Feb 2, 2012

### feathermoon

Re: Gasland

Employed by whom?

22. Feb 2, 2012

### feathermoon

Re: Gasland

He asked for permission the day before from what I read. From the CSPAN video I saw he wasn't really being belligerent either, but eh. It is a first amendment right, so if he did respectfully decline to turn off his camera then more power to him. Also, its standard procedure to allow people to film even without press passes.

23. Feb 2, 2012

### feathermoon

Re: Gasland

I'm posting news articles mostly here. But here's how I see it:

I know underground temperatures don't fluctuate much, but I don't see how some cement casings can be expected not to leak, whether through contraction and expansion, or stress. Because that's all that's between the sediment layer they're fracking, and the water table.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/04/us/04natgas.html?_r=1

So, while were discussing whether the actual drilling method is unsafe, should we discuss the human element as well?

This site tracks accidents, but this is generally blowouts and spills. Reported ones, anyway.
http://earthjustice.org/features/campaigns/fracking-across-the-united-states

I live in Ohio. A city sorta nearby was fined 400,000 dollars (reduced to 60k) for accepting fracking waste water for disposal into the Ohio river for excess sodium chloride levels. The water dumped into the Ohio was probably radioactive, but there hasn't been testing for that afaik.

http://www.news-register.net/page/content.detail/id/560640/Wheeling-Fined-For-Taking-Frack-Water.html?nav=515 [Broken]

This was of course, before the earthquakes most likely caused by injection wells in another city reasonably close by.

The radioactive drill cuttings are just buried on site in some cases if they aren't sent to the dump.
http://www.frackcheckwv.net/2011/05...short-creek-landfill-in-ohio-county-wheeling/
http://ohioepa.custhelp.com/app/ans...g-in-the-marcellus-and-utica-shale-formations

Frankly, I see current lawmakers with a glaring conflict of interests, mainly on the Republican side, as opensecrets points out they receive the majority of donations from Oil & Gas.

I am vehemently opposed to drilling in state parks and other public lands. I think that it should be illegal. Parks and public lands are there for the enjoyment of everyone, not so select groups can profit.

Small farm and parcel landowners here have a huge disadvantage. Even if they own their mineral rights and don't want to lease, horizontal wells can go laterally for a mile. They may have literally no choice but to have their land fracked, under current lack of regulation.

Also, while burning natural gas may produced less carbon than burning coal, current production methods nearly make up for it in their release of carbon, says an NRDC study.

Anyway, Gasland? I'd say myth confirmed, regardless of what specific evidence the documentary in question presented.

Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
24. Feb 2, 2012

### TheStatutoryApe

Re: Gasland

Apparently the rules state that if you are to run a camera in the committee meeting you are required to have press credentials. Some staffers have apparently stated that this rule has mostly been ignored in the past, I am unsure if that is really true. As for "hiding something" this is the meeting he was attempting to film as filmed and streamed online for the public by C-Span. At worst the chair person just didn't like they guy because of his work and decided to use the rules to give him a hard time about his camera.

25. Feb 2, 2012

### Oltz

Re: Gasland

Couple things,

1) Anything from that deep in the earth has trace levels of NORM (Naturally occuring radioactive material) . When you pull a core sample directly from the Marcellus or drill cuttings the Activity level is LESS then you will find in a Real Granite countertop.

2) Not all radioative material is soluble in water Ra-226 happens to be so Trace levels are dissolved in the Millions of gallons of Brine already present in the Marcellus (~25% Water Sat)

3) This brine that is present in the formation already comes to dominate the chemical analysis of the returning water with in a day of initial flow. (as in you can test the water all you want and the chmical additives are never at a detectable level.

4) the Marcellus is between 5000' and 7500' Feet down so any actual contamination would need to travel UP that distance.

5) Water wells are less then 1500 feet down and Immediatly below them there are still water bearing levbels but these are Brine and thus salty.

6) Coal bed methane and shallow gas. is it more likely that the $20,000 water well that was put in 40 years ago has bad casing and cementing or the$6,000,000 one put in last year? We in Pa have been drilling "shallow" gas wells for well way longer then I have been alive these wells aer still within the water table. IF it was economic to remove the gas then obviously there is enough present and has always been present.

Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017