Carl Chapman/Wikimedia

The global glut of fossil fuels is good for consumers; paying less than two bucks a gallon for gasoline is a big benefit. 

But part of the glut traces back to increased oil and gas production in the United States, largely because of fracking. 

Sightline Institute, an environmental and policy think tank, assembled a report on facilities proposed for transporting the products of fracking in Oregon and Washington. 

Those facilities include the planned Jordan Cove gas export terminal near Coos Bay, and the long pipeline proposed to run to it. 

Greystone Books

The price of gasoline is certainly low at the moment, a benefit of the world oil glut caused in part by North American oil wells. 

But what are the external costs of cheap oil and natural gas?  For a Canadian woman named Jessica Ernst, they were intolerably high. 

Her home water supply became undrinkable, with the blame falling on gas wells and fracking activity nearby. 

Journalist Andrew Nikiforuk covers the oil and gas industry and tells Ernst's story in the book Slick Water.


For a guy in the minority party in the Senate, Jeff Merkley knows how to make headlines. 

He certainly did so this week, with a proposal (shared with Sen. Bernie Sanders) to stop leasing federal lands for fossil fuel extraction. 

He makes a rare studio visit to discuss the proposal. 

Sen. Merkley, who came from Southern Oregon, supports the Jordan Cove natural gas export plan, despite his position on the new fossil fuel bill.

Fracking Moratorium Requested

Nov 22, 2013

California U.S. Representative Lois Capps has asked for a moratorium on offshore fracking until there's more study. In a letter to the Interior Department and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency this week, Capps says she wants the federal government to conduct a study of fracking's impacts to the marine environment.

A recent report by the Associated Press documented at least a dozen instances of hydraulic fracturing in the Santa Barbara Channel, site of a disastrous 1969 oil platform blowout that spurred the modern environmental movement.

VENTSday-Filibusters + Fracking

Nov 20, 2013

Republicans in the U.S. Senate just blocked another Obama judicial nominee through the "filibuster" rule (60 votes needed to proceed to a real vote), and California just released proposed rules for "fracking."

Tell us what YOU think on these issues...