Active foaming on a farm in Weyburn, Saskatchewan
‘Green’ Pollution OK, regular pollution bad
OK, so what’s with the title? Well like it says, if you pollute under the guise of being green or saving planet Earth from that nasty old CO2 it’s perfectly OK, no one will scream bloody murder. While George W. Bush was always “in the pockets of big oil,” no one will write an article about President Obama being in the pockets of ‘big green.’
See, if your company is an oil company or a coal power plant, than you’re very bad and evil because you spew out pollution. If you’re going to sequester CO2, which now according to EPA edict is a pollutant, then it’s perfectly OK with most of the greentards, regardless what the consequences are, and it appears there may be some, too, possibly big ones.
My question is, that if this is now technically a pollutant (don’t talk to me call the EPA), then why are we allowing this to be injected underground when we don’t know if it’s safe or not, don’t know if it will leak back out or not and have no clue what may happen in the future as far as contamination goes?
The new CO2 storage project in the US
Per Bloomberg Newsweek we now have carbon storage coming to western Illinois……
Developers behind the long-running FutureGen project said Monday carbon dioxide generated by a western Illinois power plant they plan to refit with experimental low-emissions coal technology will be pumped into the ground at a nearby site for underground storage.
OK so what else? Well, to reiterate, it seems we have two sets of rules going. If you want to build an oil pipeline, it’s evil and polluting and the greentards will sue the socks off of anyone who tries to in an effort to delay and stop one from being built. But, if you want to build a pipeline to pump CO2 to the point where it will be sequestered? Well, I don’t see any lawsuits or hear anyone much griping, so it must also be OK with the greentards because it’s related to curing global warming and it’s ‘green.’
The companies working with the Department of Energy on FutureGen said they’d chosen a spot in Morgan County over three competing sites around the state in part because it was by far the closest to the Ameren Corporation-owned plant in Meredosia, Ill. They say that could save up to $250 million in pipeline construction costs on a project now budgeted at $1.3 billion.
What about the place they will be sequestering all this nasty old CO2? Is it safe? Does anyone really have a clue here? Or, are we operating on touchy-feely-making-money feelings and reality be damned?
“We did geophysical surveys there that confirmed that it looks to be well suited for safe CO2 storage,” he said. “Second, it’s in close proximity — in fact in the same county — as the Meredosia power plant.”
Must be, they said so. But if it isn’t? Well, seems they hedged their bets some on that, which doesn’t exactly make me feel all warm and snug about it……
In all, he said, 390 million tons of carbon dioxide would be stored at the site over 30 years. The gas would be pumped into an underground formation known as the Mt. Simon Sandstone, which is about 850-feet thick at the Morgan County site. That lies under another rock formation, the Eau Claire Shale, he said, which is several hundred feet thick and should serve as a “cap rock” to seal the storage site.
Illinois law shields the project from liability to some degree, but U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rules provide for up to 50 more years of monitoring, Humphreys said.
Ahhhh, “should” doesn’t sound very promising to me. What if it doesn’t and all this CO2 starts leaking out? Oh, they have a shield to protect them courtesy of Illinois, my how nice.
It appears I’m not the only one wondering about whether this is safe or not either. From MyJournalCourrier we get this from the locals…..
More than 300 people in the Alexander community, many of them family farmers, have expressed disfavor with a carbon dioxide storage hub in eastern Morgan County.
To many, it’s about more than safety; it’s protection of a way of life that has been shared across generations.
Andy Davenport, who owns land east of the 1,000 carbon dioxide sequestration site planned for Morgan County, believes it is an unproven technology and some of the official literature he read indicates that if the project is a success, the FutureGen Alliance would look to expand the site from 1,000 acres to 10,000 acres, which would essentially swallow his farm.
Again, we read about this company seeking protection from liability from the government, which only increases my doubts about exactly how safe this is…….
The state would release the alliance from liability if the group operated within the state-mandated parameters of injecting carbon dioxide. To add additional buffers, the alliance devised a four-tier plan to ensure that any possible property damage would not be a resident’s responsibility.
The first tier covers minor equipment or pipe break damage, which the FutureGen Alliance would pay for. The second is an industrial insurance policy of at least $10 million to cover larger expenses. The group will also put money into a trust fund for each ton of carbon dioxide injected in the ground to cover costs outside the industrial insurance policy.
Ultimately, if all three of those fell through, the state would back it.
Funny I don’t seem to note anything about who’s going to pay if this ruins land and kills animals or possibly even people. Must be one of those it’s all about making money deals that will swiftly file bankruptcy if the shit hits the fan and/or get some cover from the government.
Problems in Saskatchewan Being Ignored?
The raison d’être for this article is that it appears we already have what looks like it could be a major problem with CO2 sequestration in Canada as it appears to be leaking, has forced at least one family off their land and has farmers in the area worried. What I can’t fathom is that in all the articles I read about this project in Illinois I don’t see any references to this already being diagnosed as potentially dangerous in Canada. Per CBC News in Canada……
A Saskatchewan farm couple says greenhouse gases that were supposed to be stored permanently underground are leaking out, killing animals and sending groundwater foaming to the surface like shaken-up soda pop.
Cameron Kerr says ponds on his land have developed algae blooms, clots of foam and scum, while small animals have been found dead a few metres away.
There is a report on file now that tries to minimize escaping CO2 as having any effect on things, but some aren’t buying it…….
A Petroleum Technology Research Centre (PTRC) report released last week, which attempts to rule out the possibility of a CO2 leak near Weyburn, Saskatchewan, omits critical information and fails to provide concrete answers, Ecojustice said today after reviewing of the document.
Well, that I can remember I have not heard of Ecojustice, but at least they appear to be on top of this one. I have to agree the PTRC report might be a few pages short of a novel……
“The PTRC response is incomplete and ignores important factors such as the presence of abandoned oil wells, the presence of faults and fractures and the high pressures under which CO2 is injected,” said Ecojustice staff lawyer Barry Robinson, who is working with the Kerrs. “Anyone familiar with Calmar, Alberta, knows that abandoned wells are not always properly sealed,” added Robinson. “The PTRC has not conducted any field investigations of the integrity of abandoned wells in the Weyburn area.”
It appears to me that in general things seem to be very one-sided about pollution and it depends on whose doing the polluting as to whether anyone complains or not. Back to ‘green’ pollution is OK but any other pollution is bad. You can damn well bet that if this was an oil company fracking natural gas wells that the greens would be all over it, as would the mainstream media and the press releases and lawsuits would be flying.
However, since it’s injecting CO2 underground to save Gaia, no one seems to be making much noise about it, or even looking into it. Which is yet more CO2 Insanity. We again see that in the rush to be green we have most everyone focusing on those green dollars and seemingly forgetting about common sense. They’re perhaps on their way to creating larger problems than they claim to be solving. It seems that two greens make you rich, but not necessarily right.
I hope this doesn’t cause similar problems in Illinois due to leaping before looking. If it does you can bet that as usual, the buck will be passed around and around and that no one will be held responsible when the pond on your farm starts fizzing like a shaken can of Coke.
Here is a link to the website at the Globe and Mail with 10 photos of what this is allegedly causing.
Sources: thegreenpages.ca, The Globe and Mail, Bloomberg Business Week, Free Republic. myjournalcourrier