Oil and Gas

1:26pm

Fri May 18, 2012
Energy

Pipeline Flip Turns U.S. Oil World 'Upside Down'

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 4:34 pm

The U.S. oil boom has created a glut of crude in Cushing, Okla., a major oil storage hub. This sign dubs the city the "Pipeline Crossroads of the World."
Jeff Brady NPR

For years, Cushing, Okla., has been on the receiving end of a 500-mile pipeline funneling oil from the Gulf of Mexico to the American heartland.

Starting this weekend, that pipeline will start moving crude in the other direction. That flow reversal could soon have implications at gas pumps around the country.

"For 40 years, crude oil flowed north," says Philip Verleger, a visiting fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. "Today, oil flows south. It's as if we turned the world upside down."

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3:55pm

Thu May 17, 2012
The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers

Pennsylvania Doctors Worry Over Fracking 'Gag Rule'

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 5:30 pm

Plastic surgeon Amy Pare says it's important for doctors to know what kind of substances patients she's treating might have been exposed to.
Susan Philips WHYY

From WHYY

A new law in Pennsylvania has doctors nervous.

The law grants physicians access to information about trade-secret chemicals used in natural gas drilling. Doctors say they need to know what's in those formulas in order to treat patients who may have been exposed to the chemicals.

But the new law also says that doctors can't tell anyone else — not even other doctors — what's in those formulas. It's being called the "doctor gag rule."

'I Don't Know If It's Due To Exposure'

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1:24am

Thu May 17, 2012
The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers

Fracking's Methane Trail: A Detective Story

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 7:36 am

A natural gas drilling rig's lights shimmer in the evening light near Silt, Colo.
David Gilkey NPR

Gaby Petron didn't set out to challenge industry and government assumptions about how much pollution comes from natural gas drilling.

She was just doing what she always does as an air pollution data sleuth for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

"I look for a story in the data," says Petron. "You give me a data set, I will study it back and forth and left and right for weeks, and I will find something to tell about it."

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12:41pm

Wed May 16, 2012
The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers

Town's Effort To Link Fracking And Illness Falls Short

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 9:35 am

NPR

Quite a few of the 225 people who live in Dish, Texas, think the nation's natural gas boom is making them sick.

They blame the chemicals used in gas production for health problems ranging from nosebleeds to cancer.

And the mayor of Dish, Bill Sciscoe, has a message for people who live in places where gas drilling is about to start: "Run. Run as fast as you can. Grab up your family and your belongings, and get out."

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1:04am

Wed May 16, 2012
The Fracking Boom: Missing Answers

Medical Records Could Yield Answers On Fracking

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 8:50 am

William Reigle has fibrosis, a disease that may be aggravated by nearby fracking. He's one of more than 2 million Pennsylvanians who get their health care from Geisinger Health System. The system wants to use its extensive database of patient records to study the health impact of natural gas production.
Maggie Starbard NPR

A proposed study of people in northern Pennsylvania could help resolve a national debate about whether the natural gas boom is making people sick.

The study would look at detailed health histories on hundreds of thousands of people who live near the Marcellus Shale, a rock formation in which energy companies have already drilled about 5,000 natural gas wells.

If the study goes forward, it would be the first large-scale, scientifically rigorous assessment of the health effects of gas production.

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