Friday Funny – fracktional thinking

In the U.K. there is a big ridiculous row over this well concealed gas well in Balcombe, that the Balcombe Parish Council didn’t even object to when Cuadrilla’s application for planning permission to drill for shale gas went before them.

The noise being made by the anti-frackers in America is equally ridiculous, they can’t even protest the right well sites.  “The protesters do not seem concerned with such details”

Josh writes:

Given the recent protests about Fracking, I thought some cartoons on the subject might be a good idea.

Josh_fract_sheet1

Suggestions for further Fract Sheets are very welcome!

Cartoons by Josh

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133 Responses to Friday Funny – fracktional thinking

  1. Gail Combs says:

    A classic Josh, Thank you.

  2. Bloke down the pub says:

    I am a member of the Co-operative society. I recently became aware that the co-op is sponsoring some of the anti-fracking campaigners. I will soon no longer be a member of the co-operative society.

  3. AleaJactaEst says:

    the eco-loons simply cannot see the irony of the footprint of 300′ turbines all over the land compared to a 3 1/2″ hole in the ground.

  4. pyeatte says:

    Perfect example where a cartoon reflects reality. The left is trying to turn our energy supply system into the world’s biggest “Rube-Goldberg” machine – it costs a fortune, is incredibly complex and accomplishes nothing useful. Of course it does accomplish what the left wants – poverty, misery and loss of freedom.

  5. Great propaganda, well done!

  6. Greg says:

    Gail Combs says:
    A classic Josh, Thank you.

    Exactly. A classic case of deliberate misinterpretation. A brilliant visual straw man.

    The main objection to fracking would seem to be the danger of pollution of the ground water.
    This kind of deliberate twisting the facts is what we’ve come to expect from warmists. Seems that many here are just as happy to applaud the same so long as it goes their way.

  7. Robert W Turner says:

    I really wish the API would file suit on Josh Fox, just to make his life miserable for awhile.

  8. Greg says:

    Kit Carruthers says: Great propaganda, well done!

    Propaganda indeed.

  9. John Mason says:

    Perhaps Josh will give up driving then as the figures WRT the number of birds killed by automobiles every year are not difficult to access!

  10. Greg says:

    AleaJactaEst says: the eco-loons simply cannot see the irony of the footprint of 300′ turbines all over the land compared to a 3 1/2″ hole in the ground.

    If was just a 3 1/2″ hole in the ground, I’m sure no one would object. Do you have any evidence of you eco-loons objecting to a 3 1/2″ hole in the ground?

  11. ANH says:

    They are protesting against fracking for shale gas but at this site in Balcombe the work being undertaken is to drill for oil.

  12. John Mason says:

    I know of mineshafts that are less than 6ft across – you could leap across them I suppose. But if that athletic act somehow went wrong, there’s a second dimension to take into account as some of them are hundreds of feet deep!

  13. Matthew R Marler says:

    It’s funny, but I did notice that the Single Shale Well does not produce electricity. The power plant should be included for a fair comparison.

  14. arthur4563 says:

    Read a piece a few weeks ago that claimed whooping Crane population has had a rapid sudden decline, threatening extinction. The author, a bird enthusiast, suspects wind turbines.

  15. richardscourtney says:

    Greg:

    Josh provides an amusing cartoon which accurately presents facts.

    At August 9, 2013 at 8:20 am you ask

    AleaJactaEst says:

    the eco-loons simply cannot see the irony of the footprint of 300′ turbines all over the land compared to a 3 1/2″ hole in the ground.

    If was just a 3 1/2″ hole in the ground, I’m sure no one would object. Do you have any evidence of you eco-loons objecting to a 3 1/2″ hole in the ground?

    Yes. For example, your above post at August 9, 2013 at 8:16 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385463

    But, like all ‘Green’ objections to anything, your post pretends there are imagined risks in addition to reality.

    Richard

  16. “Matthew R Marler says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:29 am

    It’s funny, but I did notice that the Single Shale Well does not produce electricity. The power plant should be included for a fair comparison.”

    Indeed, as should the multiple horizontal wells extending for kilometres from the main well, the fugitive methane releases, the other wells in the areas, the equipment required to be constantly kept on site for well work-over, and the potentially polluted groundwater over several square km.

    But that’s OK, because shale gas is extracted by cuddly fluffy companies with only our best interests at heart ;-)

    REPLY: hey Kit, how is your home in Edinburgh Scotland (from your avatar link) heated? Peat, wood, coal, oil, gas, or electricity derived from one of the former sources?- Anthony

  17. John Mason says:

    Anthony, not being Kit but also living in the UK – who needs heat right now? It’s 20C plus outside! We don’t generally need heating from May through to late October. Logs for me in winter – cut ‘em myself from fallen trees on neighbouring farms, by arrangement with landowners.

  18. richardscourtney says:

    Kit Carruthers and Matthew R Marler:

    Get real!

    The well-head need be no more than the size of a small cottage and could resemble a barn. It will produce gas which will be piped from the well-head.

    So, what will be seen of the well-head is accurately predicted in the Josh cartoon.

    Fracked gas will fuel an existing power station or add to household gas supplies. This requires no additional infrastructure.

    As the Josh cartoon indicates, windfarms do not reduce need for existing power stations or household gas supplies but add to the need for back-up power stations.

    Oil and gas companies are no more “cuddly fluffy companies with only our best interests at heart” than are windfarm companies.

    Assertions of “fugitive methane releases” and “potentially polluted groundwater” are deplorable and unsubstantiated scare-mongering.

    Richard

  19. Anthony, solar gain and gas central heating. What’s your point?

    REPLY: My point is that your are a hypocrite when you complain about gas extraction, since you make use of it. – Anthony

  20. RACookPE1978 says:

    5 acres = one 600 Megawatt power plant. (2x 200 Megawatt natural gas fired combustion turbines, plus 1x heat-recovery steam generator also about 200 Megawatt )

    Runs 24 hours per day. 365 days per year, needs no backup,

    Let’s see.

    One 2 megawatt wind turbine per 80 acres. See: http://www.aweo.org/windarea.html
    Worldwide, one wind turbine runs only 23% of the time. (Wind turbine capacity factor averages 23%)
    A wind turbine needs a constantly running, greatly inefficient natural gas fired backup.
    The NG backup breaks every 8 months (steel cracking and bearing and generator cracks) due to constant heatup and cooldown rates as load changes, so you actually need TWO NG backup generators to keep ONE running all the time at an inefficient off-peak load rate.

    So you need 300 wind turbines (to theoretically generate that original 600 Meg’s of electricity that you still need)/.23 efficiency rate => 1304 wind turbines x 80 acres per turbine =>104,000 acres. Plus the thousands of miles of NEW high voltage towers and expensive copper cables connecting all of those wind turbines.
    \
    And all of this assumes that the wind is even blowing regularly at this location in the nation: from Louisiana through North Carolina, the Bermuda High prevents ALL wind from being used across 1/4 of the country..

  21. Annie says:

    That cartoon is brilliant.

  22. RockyRoad says:

    Kit Carruthers says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:14 am

    Great propaganda, well done!

    “Propaganda” is defined as:
    noun 1. information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement , institution, nation, etc.

    With that definition in mind, can you explain to the rest of us what there is in Josh’s cartoon that you would consider to be “propaganda”?

    Much appreciated, Kit.

    And if nothing if forthcoming, we’ll consider your comment as “propaganda”.

  23. Crob says:

    Kit Carruthers says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:35 am

    “But that’s OK, because shale gas is extracted by cuddly fluffy companies with only our best interests at heart ;-)”

    Sorry, but the cuddly fluffy bunnies have very sensitive ears and have all left the country due to Wind Turbine Syndrome.

  24. Canman says:

    Suggestions for further Fract Sheets are very welcome!

    Josh might be able to graphically make a comparison of how long the supply of gas will last as opposed to how long the windmills will last.

  25. Peter Miller says:

    There are almost 600,000 fracking holes in the USA. This technology is transforming the American economy and is an enormous strategic positive, not having to rely on the goodwill of those with camels.

    Fracking could be the economic salvation of the UK and Europe.

    Because fracking makes so much sense, it was an obvious target for the serial ecoloons, who are becoming seriously worried that the subject of supposed man made climate change is becoming boring and/or debunked.

    Is there some way this subject could be made into a cartoon?

    The ecoloon arguments against fracking – earthquakes and ground water contamination – have as much credibility as His Manniness’ tree ring interpretations.

  26. “richardscourtney says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:55 am

    The well-head need be no more than the size of a small cottage and could resemble a barn. It will produce gas which will be piped from the well-head.

    So, what will be seen of the well-head is accurately predicted in the Josh cartoon.”

    So you’re saying that the storage of water, sand and chemicals in addition to the drill rig will fit inside the footprint of a small cottage? I see… You know that once the well has been drilled, it requires constant work-over to produce gas. You don’t simply put a hole in the ground and voila! gas comes out of the tap you fit at the top?

    “Fracked gas will fuel an existing power station or add to household gas supplies. This requires no additional infrastructure.”

    Agreed, except for what I’ve noted above, and possible pipelines.

    “As the Josh cartoon indicates, windfarms do not reduce need for existing power stations or household gas supplies but add to the need for back-up power stations.”

    Not necessarily – if you build a smart grid then you can counter intermittency. Not yet done, but apparently achievable, especially if you include other tech such as solar PV, wave, tidal, nuclear, etc.

    “Oil and gas companies are no more “cuddly fluffy companies with only our best interests at heart” than are windfarm companies.”

    Glad we agree!

    “Assertions of “fugitive methane releases” and “potentially polluted groundwater” are deplorable and unsubstantiated scare-mongering.”

    I hope you see the irony in what you wrote.

    “RockyRoad says:
    August 9, 2013 at 9:03 am

    “Propaganda” is defined as:
    noun 1. information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement , institution, nation, etc.

    With that definition in mind, can you explain to the rest of us what there is in Josh’s cartoon that you would consider to be “propaganda”?”

    OK, the cartoon is an idea deliberately used to harm the wind farm group, spread widely through this blog. The cartoon does this by portraying wind farms falsely, or at least, inaccurately and DEFINITELY unfavourably compared with shale gas, which is shown to be all sunshine-and-daffodils. This leads one to the assumption (falsely) that windfarms are BAD and shale gas is GOOD. In fact, there are both strengths and weaknesses with both, which I’m happy to acknowledge by the way. Contrary to what you may think, I am not anti shale gas or fossil fuels, but we need to have take a realistic and pragmatic approach to the issues.

  27. Rick K says:

    Methinks Kit and Co. are members of the Environmental Industrial Complex…

  28. AleaJactaEst says:

    Greg says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:20 am

    yeah Greg.

    I’ve worked on a Southern English oil field just north of Winchester, you probably didn’t even know this existed, and also on Wytch Farm in Dorset, which you can’t see because it’s so carefully land-managed,There are several also around Gainsborough and near Welton in Lincolnshire and again in East Riding near Bridlington. Wytch Farm has 300+ 8 1/2″ – 3 1/4″ holes from 10k – 33k’ long running underneath Poole Harbour. The footprint of a land drill site is one of the most carefully managed sites by DECC and is well smaller than the abscesses we see from the windmill footprints that have raped the countryside.

    Look before you leap next time Muppet.

  29. EternalOptimist says:

    @John Mason
    ‘Perhaps Josh will give up driving then as the figures WRT the number of birds killed by automobiles every year are not difficult to access!’

    Any sane person will compare the cost to the benefit, and very few of the technologies we use come without a cost.
    The problem we have is that there are a section of people who blind themselves to the high cost and low benefit of a particular technology, like wind power, for ideological reasons. Then, for those same reasons, they object to a low cost and high benefit alternative.

  30. Crispin in Waterloo says:

    “The main objection to fracking would seem to be the danger of pollution of the ground water.”

    Well then we should find out whether or not there is any danger of ‘pollution’ from fracking to assess whether or not it ‘poses a threat’ to groundwater, right?

    Arguably a large meteor ‘poses a threat’ to ground water so I guess anything you can imagine also ‘poses a threat’. Now, is that threat credible?

    My boys used to love watching a TV show they called “The Credible Hulk’. They found the green monster quite credible, apparently. So too, the Green Monster finds any and all threats ‘credible’. So creating ‘opposition’ to any non-pet technology is as simple as Imagineering some ‘threats’. Credibility is not required as all threats are to be treated as ‘credible’ at least long enough to suit their purpose.

    Fracking has been going on for decades. I think the protesters didn’t know that which I cannot say surprises me in the least.

    What’s facts got to do with it, got to do with it…
    What’s facts but an overblown emotion…

  31. RACookPE1978 says:

    Ya know Carruthers, you are right: We “do” need more than 1 little building for the NG “hole”.

    But I “can” fit the entire drilling rig and its trucks and work trailers on two acres (less than the size of my elementary school and playground back home).

    Oh. Those 1304 wind turbines we need to replace that ONE 10 acre 600 Meg power plant? Each needs about 1 acre itself. And each wind turbine life span is only 7 years. Assuming you actually DO the required maintenance and rebuilding (requiring cranes and extensive ground support equipment) every 8 months to change bearings, brakes, gears, controllers, motors, breakers, and generator parts and pieces and regulators.

    But your wind turbine extortionists don’t get “maintenance money” and “repair tax breaks and tax incentives” from Obama. They ONLY get their tax breaks and “green energy” subsidies for building the things! Once built, no money!

    So, worldwide and nationwide, maintenance just ain’t happening.

  32. Steve Dove says:

    So if you lived in that cottage by the lake with no obvious grid connection how would you power it? It’s funny because if I lived in that what looks like a peaceful cottage by a lake I would certainly not want fracking taking place next door and I don’t believe any of you would.
    But anyway getting back to that peaceful cottage how you going to power it? I guess if you have billions and can wait 20 years you could have a very pretty Nuclear plant supplying you and the surrounding area, oh as long as you can afford to stick up the pylons to get the lecky to the cottage, though my guess is in 20 years time energy supply will be beyond the financial reach of most people. Or of course you could spend a few thousand pounds get some panels and a windmill and a back up generator.

  33. John Mason says:

    @Eternal Optimist:
    “Any sane person will compare the cost to the benefit, and very few of the technologies we use come without a cost.
    The problem we have is that there are a section of people who blind themselves to the high cost and low benefit of a particular technology, like wind power, for ideological reasons. Then, for those same reasons, they object to a low cost and high benefit alternative.”

    Low cost and high benefit? Simple. Waste less energy! The main impact that has on a person is to save them money. Let’s face it, we are going to have to make the transition to low-carbon solutions to the energy situation eventually, and it will have to involve more efficient equipment and less wastage through carelessness, especially because the EROEI factor in the post-low hanging fruit era is already making itself felt. Technology is catching up to an extent, but behaviour needs to change too. I like many of you grew up in a time where all of a sudden, energy could most of the time be taken for granted and it was unbelievably cheap. We’ve had that party now and even if we disagree on climate change there are other fundamentals to be taken into account: the bottom line being that infinite growth, underpinned by accessible natural resources, on a finite planet, is impossible – that is, unless you’re one of the aliens off Independence Day who “move from planet to planet like locusts, strip out all the natural resources, then move on” (I can’t remember the exact quote but it’s close).

  34. TonG(ologist) says:

    Please spell it correctly. It’s frac’ing. Take it from an industry insider and spell the term like someone who is actually ‘in the know’ rather than the outsiders who are wannabe cogniscenti.

    REPLY: “Induced hydraulic fracturing or hydrofracturing, commonly known as fracking, is a technique in which…”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydraulic_fracturing

  35. alexwade says:

    I’m going to coin a new word: Fractfact. A fractfact is something that is based on emotion, twisted logic, or made-up facts but not on easily verifiable and easily provable facts. Since fractfacts are not based on real facts, a fractfact can contradict itself or another fractfact.

    For example:
    Fractfact — Solar and Wind can easily and cheaply replace our energy needs.
    Fractfact — Cheap energy will kill cute cuddly polar bears and poor, starving, and helpless people in 3rd world countries.
    Fractfact — Fossil fuel energy companies only want to make money whatever the consequences.
    Fractfact — Removing natural gas from the ground causes earthquakes and ground water pollution.
    Fractfact — Birds deaths because of wind turbines aren’t really that bad because automobiles and airplanes kill birds too.
    Fractfact — Environmental groups do not make a lot of money are being suppressed by Big Oil.
    Fractfact — Telling the truth about environmentalist is propaganda.

    [Should that phrased not become FrackturedFact? Mod]

  36. JFD says:

    I drove along I-20 last week where literally thousands of wind mill power generators are located. None of the mills on the north side of the interstate were not turning while about 85 or 90% of the ones on the south side were turning. I asked a friend about this that night and he said that 85 or 90% was a high percentage of mills in operation, that it was usually closer to 80% when the wind was blowing. He said that it took a very tall special built, very expensive mobile crane with a long stinger to remove the blades then lift the generators off of the mills and let them down to the ground where they could be worked on. My friend said that a wrong lubricant had been used on the mills on the north side of I-20 and junked the gear boxes. The operator was waiting on one of the special mobile cranes to replace the gear boxes.

    I was amazed at my reaction to the large number of mills. I normally look at energy producing sites at being necessary for the life that we live in the USA. But I thought the mills were ugly as can be. There were simply too many of them.

    There are three electric transmission governing bodies in the US, one in the east, one in the west and one in Texas called ERCOT. ERCOT has nothing to do with the federal government (FERC) like the other two. ERCOT has hit a record of a short time peak of 22% of power being generated by wind mills while the other two governing systems wind mill peak has been less that half of that. Regulating and controlling electric grids is a complex operation. Lots of base load, lots of load following and lots of load peaking backup is required for wind mill power generators.

    Means of storing electricity is desperately needed to effectively utilize part time electricity production such as wind and solar. Research and Development has failed to come up with feasible storage facilities to date. I studied air compressors and pressure storage vessels one time but could not find insulation good enough to hold the heat in the compressed air vessels. Simply expanding the air back to atmosphere was not even close to being cost effective.

  37. Bruce Cobb says:

    @Kit Carruthers, aside from giving people a completely misguided warm and fuzzy feeling that they in some way will save the earth from climate doom, what else are windmills good for? The energy supplied by them is certainly far costlier, and they certainly despoil vast areas of land, and kill many birds and bats. Help us out here. What good are they?

  38. Stacey says:

    Sorry to be pedantic but they are drilling for oil?
    Great Cartoon.

  39. RockyRoad says:

    Ok, Kit–let’s go “realistic and pragmatic” as you suggest (because I didn’t see any “sunshine and daffodils” in the Shale Well frame as you assert):

    The biggest reason FOR fossil fuels is that CO2 is GOOD for the environment.

    Wind farms produce no such benefit, hence isn’t a long-term solution, unless you’re willing to ignore the cost/benefit analysis that’s definitely in favor of fossil fuels with respect to development and production costs of wind.

    Do you understand the definition of “base load” as opposed to an ephemeral source such as wind?

    Do you understand that when wind is needed most–during regional high pressure systems during the winter and the summer for heat and air conditioning, respectively–there is zero wind for days at a time? And the energy hole is so big no amount of cross-regional grid support is economically feasible?

    So the electric grid needed is the same as if the wind component didn’t even exist–wind is the extra “fluff” you alluded to, and by definition, rightly so.

    There’s nothing worse than having backup redundancy to support wind, the least reliable component, because base load is reliable and more cost effective considering the physical reality of the system we’re analyzing.

    Now, if YOU want to pay extra for the luxury of being Green, go right ahead–add it to your electric bill. Just leave me out of it, by all means.

    Stop the subsidies of wind—it isn’t like we’re running out of fossil fuels now, is it?

    But that’s not all.

    Do you live near a wind farm? I do–and they’re definitely an eyesore. And they kill birds, generate lots of noise, and aren’t even required to have a reclamation plan once their lifespan has ended (which is already a “hot potato” being battled in the courts, by the way).

    This leads me to the calculated conclusion that wind farms are BAD and shale gas is GOOD.

    And after Peak Oil has passed, we can develop wind IF it’s cost effective at that point, but by then I believe LENR/LANR and other nuclear options will be far more cost effective. We can save the rest of our petroleum at that point for plastics and the like.

    In the meantime, let’s not mess up the environment with expensive, wasteful, inefficient wind farms. They don’t contribute anything to the energy pool; indeed, they impair it.

  40. Joe Public says:

    Andrew – I really am confused:-

    Your posting begins “In the U.K. there is a big ridiculous row over this well concealed gas well in Balcombe,”

    The Beeb reports “Energy company Cuadrilla has begun drilling for oil at a site in West Sussex …..”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-23547861

    Yet Cuadrilla, which is actually doing the work states:- “The existing Balcombe oil well was drilled by Conoco in Autumn 1986 and was plugged and abandoned after the evaluation.

    Cuadrilla was granted planning permission by West Sussex County Council to undertake further exploration work at the Balcombe well location in 2010.

    In May 2013, we held a public information event at Bramble Hall to inform local residents about the planned work during summer 2013 will involve.

    For more information on the water well that we are currently drilling ….. ”

    http://www.cuadrillaresources.com/our-sites/balcombe/

  41. Bill says:

    Kit,

    You have some good points. But the biggest reason people here are against wind energy is that is not economically viable. It requires large subsidies to survive and does not produce much power and that it does produce is unreliable. You are correct that “In fact, there are both strengths and weaknesses with both, which I’m happy to acknowledge by the way.” But NG is much better than coal in terms of being “green” which is what it is replacing.

  42. Andrew says:

    While I agree that the dangers of fracking are greatly exaggerated, It seems that the inhabitants of Balcombe have good reason to complain. Apparently the application for planning permission for Cuadrilla’s drilling operation was not even discussed by Balcombe Parish Council, so local residents were presented with a fait accompli when the frackers turned up. Having said that, most of the complainers seem to be the usual Rent-a-Mob crowd.

  43. RockyRoad says:

    Steve Dove says:
    August 9, 2013 at 9:51 am

    So if you lived in that cottage by the lake with no obvious grid connection how would you power it? It’s funny because if I lived in that what looks like a peaceful cottage by a lake I would certainly not want fracking taking place next door and I don’t believe any of you would.

    But would you mind if that fracking took place two miles away from you, Steve?

    Ok, I agree–that would be fine.

    Because in the Williston Basin in N. Dakota, much of the fracking is two miles DEEP.

    In other words, in your well “next door” the fracking would be two miles away from you–just down, towards China.

    No problem, I say. And I say you’d have to agree.

  44. Bernie McCune says:

    For purists frac-ing is good but I have seen it mostly as fracking so I use that now. Usage and grammar tend to blend eventually.

    They don’t call these shale formations “tight” for nothing (thus the need for fracking) and in west Texas most of these formations are at about 10,000 ft beneath the surface. It is absolutely required to put robust casing from the surface to below the water table. In many cases there is very little ground water anyway. Generally the contamination concerns occur during the brief fracking process. Risks are extremely low if proper procedures are closely followed.

    Bernie

  45. Ric Werme says:

    I like the birds. Oh, I like the doorsteps too – great touch, Josh!

  46. JFD says:

    Hydraulic fracturing has been around for a long time with literally hundreds of thousands of oil or gas wells have been fractured. I have yet to see a single incident where hydraulic fracturing has caused environmental damage. We seem to have some anti-fractures in this thread. Would you please post some reliable damage information.

  47. richardscourtney says:

    Kit Carruthers:

    I am replying to your post addressed to me at August 9, 2013 at 9:13 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385507

    Before answering each of your points in turn, I make an overall observation; i.e.
    It would have been better for you to have looked a fool instead of proving the matter by making the points I am answering.

    You say to me

    So you’re saying that the storage of water, sand and chemicals in addition to the drill rig will fit inside the footprint of a small cottage? I see… You know that once the well has been drilled, it requires constant work-over to produce gas. You don’t simply put a hole in the ground and voila! gas comes out of the tap you fit at the top?

    Do NOT put words in my mouth!
    I did not say, suggest or imply any such thing.

    You have constructed a ‘straw man’ by claiming I said other than I did.
    I talked about the well-head and you are making the false assertion that the well-head will be as large as the temporary development site. I wrote

    The well-head need be no more than the size of a small cottage and could resemble a barn. It will produce gas which will be piped from the well-head.

    So, what will be seen of the well-head is accurately predicted in the Josh cartoon.

    That is true.
    Typically, drilling a well takes around 2-3 days and after that the well produces gas for anything from 5 – 40 years. As you admit, many wells can be drilled from one site. Assume 40 wells and a maximum of 120 days fracking is needed. After that there is only the well-head.

    And you exaggerate the infrastructure needed during that initial drilling/fracking phase.

    United Utilities have said they would expect to supply the water required for a frack site in Lancashire using a temporary main. It seems they could also handle the waste water which is mildly contaminated in comparison to some other sources of industrial waste water. So, there would be no “storage of water”. The sand and chemicals could be provided on a demand basis so would be ‘stored’ in the delivery vehicles.

    At present it is only intended to drill for oil at Balcombe (where the protest is planned) so these issues do not arise there.

    I wrote

    As the Josh cartoon indicates, windfarms do not reduce need for existing power stations or household gas supplies but add to the need for back-up power stations.

    And you have replied

    Not necessarily – if you build a smart grid then you can counter intermittency. Not yet done, but apparently achievable, especially if you include other tech such as solar PV, wave, tidal, nuclear, etc.

    That is fanciful and wishful thinking which is on a par with claiming the country could be powered by unicorn farts. I do not have time or space here to fully explain all that is wrong with that so I merely point out that the grid – be it “smart” or not – merely distributes electricity and does not generate it.

    Hence, the grid cannot “counter intermittency” because it has no possibility of distributing electricity from windfarms when the windfarms are not producing electricity.

    And if you have adequate nuclear for when there is no power from windfarms then there is no rational reason for the windfarms.

    For a more detailed explanation of why your suggestion is nonsense see

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/reprint/courtney_2006_lecture.pdf

    I wrote

    Assertions of “fugitive methane releases” and “potentially polluted groundwater” are deplorable and unsubstantiated scare-mongering.

    That is true.
    The US has tens of thousandfs of fracked wells for shale gas and has not experienced problems of “fugitive methane releases” and “potentially polluted groundwater”.

    But you have replied

    I hope you see the irony in what you wrote.

    There is NO irony (intended or otherwise) in what I wrote. I merely wrote the truth.

    And you conclude saying to RockyRoad in response to his post at August 9, 2013 at 9:03 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385500

    OK, the cartoon is an idea deliberately used to harm the wind farm group, spread widely through this blog. The cartoon does this by portraying wind farms falsely, or at least, inaccurately and DEFINITELY unfavourably compared with shale gas, which is shown to be all sunshine-and-daffodils. This leads one to the assumption (falsely) that windfarms are BAD and shale gas is GOOD. In fact, there are both strengths and weaknesses with both, which I’m happy to acknowledge by the way. Contrary to what you may think, I am not anti shale gas or fossil fuels, but we need to have take a realistic and pragmatic approach to the issues.

    That is pure bollocks!
    Windfarms are expensive, polluting, environmentally damaging, bird swatters which only produce electricity when the wind is strong enough but not too strong, and they produce no electricity of use to an electricity grid at any time. This is explained in the article I link to above in this post.

    Any “realistic and pragmatic approach to the issues” shows
    1.
    Windfarms are less “favourable” than a boot up the backside.
    2.
    Fracking provides useful and economic energy supply.

    Richard

  48. SJB says:

    Wind power creates a problem for electric systems operators. As one who is responsible to keep the lights on for an electrical distribution system of approximately 1 million people I am aware of this first hand. We are part of a electrical transmission grid that has about a 10,000 megawatt peak load and there are around 900 megawatts of installed wind generation.

    There are many protocols and procedures in place to deal with power shortages. In July we experienced some very hot weather and we were directed by the transmission operator to shed (turn off) 45 megawatts of firm load as we had insufficient generation to meet demand. I looked at the generation of all of the hydro, coal, gas, and wind. Some of the generators were offline for maintenance or repairs and of the 900 megawatts of installed wind we were generating only 110 megawatts.

    As a distribution system operator it doesn’t really matter to me where the electrons come from, I just want to keep the lights on for my customers. Wind does not give me a reliable source of energy and it is rarely available during the times when it is needed most as the wind is usually calm when its very hot or very cold. Thus we have to turn off the power to some of our customers to protect the integrity of the grid at times of extreme demand. I have seen our wind generators output as low 3% of installed capacity. The most I have seen it is 79%.

    When there is a way to have reliable, consistent output from renewable generation Ill be all for it. In the meantime I would prefer keep my customers happy by keeping their lights on.

  49. taobabe says:

    I kinda like solar power myself. Why not solar power?

  50. richardscourtney says:

    taobabe:

    At August 9, 2013 at 10:40 am you ask

    I kinda like solar power myself. Why not solar power?

    I answer: because some people want to switch their lights on and not off when the Sun goes down.

    Richard

  51. LeastMostWanted says:

    I am no warmest by any measure and am pretty pleased with the amount of oil and maybe even natural gas this country will be able to produce through fracking but… to act like there are not serious problems environmentally with fracking is short sighted and makes me questions your motives Anthony. I don’t want to question your motives; one of the things that attracted me to your arguments was your stance as a conservationist. I believe folks in the environmental movement need to return to the basics of clean air and clean water. Fracking I feel needs more regulation and better oversight. It is a filthy practice that if done correctly could be good for everyone. Images from the Dakota’s fracking fields should be evidence enough to show that wells are not hidden behind trees and the surface water sources close to fracking areas are far from pristine. The trucks coming and going from areas around wells and the machinery used to create and run the wells in of themselves make for unsavory environmental conditions that most Americans would never want to live near unless they were making tons of cash from it. You pride yourself on research and facts how about applying the same here.

  52. Brian H says:

    John Mason says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:49 am

    . Logs for me in winter – cut ‘em myself from fallen trees on neighbouring farms, by arrangement with landowners.

    And how many thousand, or million, others could share in your windfall logging solution? On the same farms? Ijit.

  53. alexwade says:

    [Should that phrased not become FrackturedFact? Mod]

    No. That is harder to say. Fractfact can be easy to say, it just rolls off the tongue when you say it out loud. It is also mean to coincidence with the “Fract Sheet” and it is meant to be a form of satire of double-speak. “Frackturedfact” sounds like some misguided fact, but fractfact does not. But a fractfact is a misguided fact. Which makes it all the more ironic. I believe there is another word for what I am trying to convey, but I cannot think of it.

  54. Robert says:

    Living in West Virginia, USA, I’m right in the middle of the fracking and shale boom. Although the gist of the cartoon is correct a shale well pad is a bit more extensive than a pipe coming out of a ground, you have a retention pond and brine tanks as well plus whatever else is deemed necessary to the long term operation. That said, a producing well site could easily be hidden and, yes, in no way impacts the immediate environs and viewshed as does a wind farm (we have those as well), though it depends upon the individual drilling company as to any remediation beyond a simple cleared area with grass. Some companies actually want the sites to be seen, not only for security concerns but also as advertising for the industry. All of the ones I’ve seen are clean and of no real impact to surrounding properties.

    Add in power density of NG/oil vs wind vs reliability and it’s no contest.

    The bigger problem we have here are “orphan wells” and non-shale wells. The former are an ecological and safety hazard and the later are simply neglected as the money is in the drilling of new wells. I have a 30 year old gas well 300 feet from my home that used to be swabbed twice yearly, the site kept mowed of vegetation and the well maintained as problems arose. Three years ago the shale boom hit and the well is now only visited once a month as someone comes to get the monthly production chart from meter. There are broken parts that have simply been discarded in the weeds. No one cares except me since I get free gas, so I find myself tending it and keeping the above ground operation in good shape, however one day it will simply drown itself out, had it been tended properly it could produce for decades, and become yet another orphaned abandoned well head left for the state to take care of when it becomes a problem.

  55. Gary Hladik says:

    Robert says (August 9, 2013 at 11:38 am): “The bigger problem we have here are “orphan wells” and non-shale wells.”

    Which raises the question of “orphan” wind turbines and farms.

  56. M Courtney says:

    For those who think this might be propaganda… look at the real world.

    Let’s play a game, follow the link below. Can you spot the 11 gas wells in this picture?

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/display/ShowImage?imageUrl=/storage/natural gas production – windmills.jpg?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1374396078042

    Look hard and you actually can.
    Because the picture is taken from the air.
    But even so, I bet you spot the wind turbines first.

  57. M Courtney says:

    OK, link doesn’t work (everything has gone like this today).

    Try this link to the source article on Bishop Hill.

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2013/7/21/energy-impact.html

    And play; it’s fun.

  58. knr says:

    For the eco-loons fracking is a serious threat , that is a threat to the type of energy supply cries they wish to see come about . As although they longer say it in public they still regard energy as ‘to easy ‘ and ‘to cheap ‘ for the people to get and know there is no chance of any return to the ‘pastoral paradise’ they seem to think we should all live in, until this changes .

    In reality if you could come up with completely green and cheap way to create power , with unlimited supply , they still find ‘reasons’ to oppose it becasue the bottom line is they don’t want the people to have such a supply.

  59. WillR says:

    [i]Kit Carruthers says:
    August 9, 2013 at 9:13 am
    “richardscourtney says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:55 am

    Not necessarily – if you build a smart grid then you can counter intermittency. Not yet done, but apparently achievable, especially if you include other tech such as solar PV, wave, tidal, nuclear, etc.[/i]

    I think that the correct answer to this is “pigs fly”.

    Wind and solar require 100% backstopping by conventional and nuclear power. All the wishing in the world will not erase this requirement.

    http://ontariowindperformance.wordpress.com/2010/09/24/chapter-3-1-powering-ontario/

    Please note that there have been times when wind disappears entirely from the power grid. These times are random and not restricted to any season. The only predictable “blackout times” for wind occur after each and every major storm system rolls through Ontario.

    People continue to believe that wind is always producing at least 25-35% of faceplate power — but it’s simply not true. Not even today. At least 31 times this year alone — up to Jun 26, 2013 the Wind dropped to less than 5% of faceplate value — effectively Zero (<18 MWatts). We draw a minimum of 16000 MW and typically 26,000 MW on a hot summer days. Wind often goes to Zero during summer months — or is close to maximum on cool windy summer days — usually weekends when the power is not needed.

    Wind is uncontrollable. All the statistical manipulation in the world can only give the appearance of usefulness.

  60. SadButMadLad says:

    Joe Public @10:18, that water well is for monitoring the groundwater. As for gas, those yanks use funny words for their fuel. We call our liquid fuel petrol, they call the same thing gas even though its not – go figure. ;-)

  61. John Mason says:

    Brian H says:
    August 9, 2013 at 11:21 am
    “And how many thousand, or million, others could share in your windfall logging solution? On the same farms? Ijit.”
    Brian – your impoliteness aside – a heck of a lot more if people don’t waste energy like we westerners do. Large areas of Earth need no heating energy, at least most of the time, and others use it to vast excess, or use transport energy to vast excess. Like it or not we are all going to have to face up to these issues… you can call me whatever you want but that fact still remains, no matter how loud you shout. There is, ultimately, no alternative.

  62. Walt Stone says:

    Horizontal wells drilled in and near Fort Worth Texas

  63. Crispin in Waterloo says:

    @JFD
    “I studied air compressors and pressure storage vessels one time but could not find insulation good enough to hold the heat in the compressed air vessels. Simply expanding the air back to atmosphere was not even close to being cost effective.”

    Is it possible to use something with a phase change like propane but with a more useful liquefaction pressure? The heat could was well be stored chemically. I think Garth Foxcroft came up with a cooking device that worked that way. It was (direct) solar charged, separating two chemicals that floated away from each other. Turning it over caused them to mix and the whole thing got hot enough to cook on. When you want the gas pressure to be released, the chemically stored heat could be applied to the stored liquefied gas regaining the energy.

    Thanks for bring up the subject – I had not considered the system loss by allowing the compressed gas to cool. Time to strap on the Inventing Hat.

  64. Chad Wozniak says:

    @RA Cook –
    Well said – wind is an environmental as well as an economic disaster. But then “green” has never been about the environment – it’s only about totalitarian control and taking of that to which one is not entitled.

  65. philincalifornia says:

    Well, Kit and others – here’s the Keeling curve from yesterday.

    Would anyone care to describe, either qualitatively or quantitatively, what it would look like if we didn’t have any of the bird shredders blighting the environment.

  66. sergeiMK says:

    http://www.sibleyguides.com/conservation/causes-of-bird-mortality/

    No bird death is good but…
    Wind turbines may kill 33,000 birds per year, and, as in the case of electrocutions, these birds tend to be large and scarce (e.g. raptors)
    Domestic and Feral Cats – may kill 500 million birds per year or more.
    Electrocutions kill tens of thousands of birds per year. This occurs mainly when large birds such as raptors make contact between a live electrical wire and a ground such as a pole. The relatively small number of birds affected belies the significance of this threat, since species such as Golden Eagle are more susceptible.
    Window strikes – estimated to kill 97 to 976 million birds/year
    Cars may kill 60 million birds per year.
    Humans are not good for birds!

  67. taobabe says:

    richardscourtney says:
    …because some people want to switch their lights on and not off when the Sun goes down.

    ___________

    Richard, there are such things as solar batteries for home, business, and utility use. You wouldn’t be left energy-less at night.

  68. OssQss says:

    Ya know, the cartoon made me think of a new product, by it appears I was too late…….

    Think about it {°¿°}

  69. Justthinkin says:

    Kit….until you quit wasting energy NOT generated by wind/solar posting your whatever here,then you are a hypocrit.If you lived by what you are trying to shove down our throats here,you would not even have a computer. You wood(pun intended) be out harvesting your garden before the fluffy mammals ate it!
    Like they say,you can’t fix stupid.

  70. NikFromNYC says:

    It’s a textbook illustration, not a cartoon.

  71. Roberto says:

    I wonder about a cartoon of the backup generators. Everybody is familiar with stop and go driving, and how that kills your gas mileage and your engine life and in fact your tailpipe contents. Of course, that’s just what these backup generators are going through. While “backing up” instead of driving forwards??

  72. Roberto says:

    Showing all the windmills as 10% filled in, and 90% outline only?

  73. RockyRoad says:

    taobabe says:
    August 9, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    richardscourtney says:
    …because some people want to switch their lights on and not off when the Sun goes down.

    ___________

    Richard, there are such things as solar batteries for home, business, and utility use. You wouldn’t be left energy-less at night.

    There is nothing preventing you from buying the equipment you list, along with solar cells to power them, and giver ‘er a try.

    Then in a year or two, return and report. Keep track of all costs and tell us how your experiment compares to electricity rates from the grid.

    It should be interesting.

  74. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Found in: alexwade said on August 9, 2013 at 9:56 am:

    [Should that phrased not become FrackturedFact? Mod]

    As opposed to Fractured Fairy Tale?

  75. EternalOptimist says:

    @John Mason. re ideology

    John, I visited Sandwich in England a few months ago. A pleasant village in the south. Near the hotel was a bridge with a 100 year old council ordinance.
    It was a list of tolls for crossing the little bridge
    sixpence for a handcart
    a shilling for a horse drawn cart, one and threepence for oxen and one and six for a team of oxen (I cant remember the exact detail, but you get the idea)

    The world has changed so much since then that it is unrecognizable. Iphones, apps, sattelites, nuclear, cars. motorways, airports, tv, micro surgery, pharmecuticals

    Your ideology is stuck in the past, unchangeable. I think the world of my great grand children will be unrecognisable
    you want your great grandchildren to live in the 1980’s. and thank you for it

  76. RB says:

    Balcombe is within easy reach of all the green loons who live in Brighton, a hotbead of green foolishness – Brighton even has the Greens in control of the city council and a right mess they are making of it.

    Brighton also boasts the UKs only Green MP (voted for by the population of the ward “Brighton Pavilion”, (itself a ghetto of the “right on”, “sandal wearing”, “nanny state”, “big government” brigade), the dreadful and woefully ill informed Caroline Lucas who recently spends all her time all over our airwaves and elsewhere trying to get any tits removed from our newspapers because it is “demeaning to women” – i.e. talking about the stuff that really matters.

    If Caudrilla go within a day’s tofu rations of Brighton they’ll find plenty of eco warriors on their doorstep before they return to their semi-detached with its fossil fueled central heating and electricity (with all mod cons of course) and their job-for-life public sector roles where they spend their days seeking ever new ways to empire build and screw ever more money out of the population of the city.

  77. Mac the Knife says:

    Josh,
    How ’bout something along the lines of DRAGNET – Sgt. Joe Friday. “Just the fracks, ma’am.”?

    Or a NIMBY angle,as Rocky Road (10:16am) suggested above, with the fractured rock 2 miles away from the complaining EcoTwit’s house because it is a vertical well 2 miles deep before horizontal fracking is induced.
    MtK

  78. davidmhoffer says:

    taobabe;
    Richard, there are such things as solar batteries for home, business, and utility use. You wouldn’t be left energy-less at night.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    1. There’s no such thing as a “solar battery”
    2. If you mean you could use solar power to charge conventional re-chargeable batteries, sorry, but since there isn’t enough solar and/or wind power being fed into the grid to serve day time uses as it is, charging batteries for night time use as well would be impossible.
    3. Richard was trying to make the point simple, but it isn’t just about lights. An electric stove for example would drain a whole raft of car batteries in minutes. Not to mention that wind and solar are at a minimum in winter, just try and run your forced air natural gas furnace with nothing to force the air….
    4. If you meant getting your own solar panels and charging your own batteries, then I suggest you price out a system at any major hardware store and see what the cost is for enough solar cells and batteries to run your house for one night. It will be thousands of dollars, enough to pay your electric bill for many many MANY years.
    5. Re your last sentence… yes you would.

  79. Mac the Knife says:

    Josh,
    There used to be a show on TV called Fractured Flickers. Clips from disparate films were spliced together and a ridiculous whole new story line added with ‘voice overs’. Here’s an example:

    That’s kinda like what the anti-fracking folks do with all of the spurious claims of polluted groundwater, methane releases, ‘my water taps burn’, etc. anyway, sooooo why not just make it such a laughable spoof of all of their absurd claims that they would be too embarrassed to even mention them again.

    Frackured Flickers – Just Joshin’ Around, Folks!
    MtK

  80. Les Johnson says:

    Anthony: Let me try and correct some information and posts here.

    As others have pointed out, this is not a gas well, but is an oil exploration well. There are no current plans to fracture the target zone. The well is beside one drilled in 1986, which was vertical. This well will go horizontal.

    A monitoring well was the first thing drilled, to ensure that there is no contamination of the shallow fresh water zones. Nearby water wells had samples taken before drilling the oil well, to get a baseline of the water composition. This is current practice in the US as well.

    To reduce the impact on the locals, Cuadrilla has controlled everything from noise levels (42 dB at night), to when trucks can come and go (no travel on weekends or school hours) .

    There are 3 steel casings cemented in the ground, as barriers between the oil zone and the surface. The upper section of the oil zone will also be cemented in, with another string of casing. Special care has been taken in designing the well barriers (cement and casing). This includes a cement that expands in the presence of hydrocarbons, and forms a hydraulic seal. (think self sealing fuel tanks).

    Lastly, at the risk of being a Pirate of Pendant, the “correct” terms and spelling is the noun “frac” and its verb “fracing”. As another poster pointed out, an apostrophe may be used, which would indicate that syllables have been dropped from “fracturing”. But no rig hand would spell it that way. This is the oilfield vernacular. The “k” was added by an unknowing media, or possibly a fan of Battlestar Galatica.

  81. Les Johnson says:

    Kit Carruthers: your

    You don’t simply put a hole in the ground and voila! gas comes out of the tap you fit at the top?

    In actual fact, that is exactly what is intended. A well will [be] designed to minimize workover. Any well that is continouslly worked over, will likely be abandoned, as workovers are expensive, and there is no production during the workover. I have known wells that produce 10, 20 or more years, without the need for a workover.

    As a resident of Aberdeen, I find it ludicrous that solar power is so popular in Scotland. In Edinburgh, you will average less than 2 hours of sunlight in the winter, and and only 6 in June. The yearly average is only 3:47 per day. I would wager that subsidies only make it worthwhile for you.

    If by solar gain, you mean letting the sunshine in the windows, that means you are getting near to zero heat in the winter when you need it, and only get heat in the summer, when you don’t need it.

  82. Janice Moore says:

    “Images from the Dakotas’ fracking fields should be evidence enough to show that wells are not hidden behind trees and the surface water sources close to fracking areas are far from pristine.” [Least Most Wanted 8/9/13 at 10:59]

    LMW, ahem. Many of the North Dakota frac’ing operations are CURRENTLY UNDER CONSTRUCTION, hence, the mess. The fouled small surface ponds or large puddles are no one’s source of potable water. That is merely a temporary eyesore.

    Your argument is unpersuasive unless you produce current photos of long-established, working, natural gas extraction operations that are an ugly blight on the landscape. I doubt you could find many (in the U.S. or Canada, anyway). Whether there are trees or elaborate landscaping around them is irrelevant to this particular question — the issue is whether they blend in or stand out like, oooh, I dunno, like windmills, perhaps.

    Evidence Wanted (if you please).

  83. Tom in Texas says:

    “We call our liquid fuel petrol, they call the same thing gas even though its not – go figure. ;-)”

    I’d guess petrol is short for petroleum, which it isn’t.
    Gas (liquid fuel in the U.S.) is short for gasoline, which it is.
    Gaseous gas is called natural gas (or NG).

  84. Janice Moore says:

    Mac! THANKS FOR SHARING THAT FUNNY VIDEO! LOL.

    Like watching data while the Fantasy Club Scientists narrate per their script (generated by their models).

    #[:)]

  85. Janice Moore says:

    That’s all well and good (and accurate), Tom, But, lol, ya’ll KNOW you Texans call it o’.

    That’s why so many of the accounting textbooks use “Big O” for one of the companies in their exercises. #[:)]

  86. Les Johnson says:

    Janice: I like Kirsie Alley’s defintion of “Big O”…

  87. Roberto says:

    Panel 1: A wellhead, with the sign something like: “UN Laboratories approved holding tank for unwanted CO2,. Guaranteed leak-proof for thousands of years. Now with improved capacity through modern hydraulic engineering.”

    Panel 2: The identical wellhead. “Danger! This risky hold in the ground could possibly leak methane bubbles into your water supply! Just like every other hole in the ground.”

  88. Roberto says:

    Make that “Hole in the rock,” twice

  89. Janice Moore says:

    Well, well, two holes in the rock. #[:)]

    Witty idea for cartoon, Roberto.

  90. Ric Werme says:

    Tom in Texas says:
    August 9, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    “We call our liquid fuel petrol, they call the same thing gas even though its not – go figure. ;-)”

    I’d guess petrol is short for petroleum, which it isn’t.

    Perhaps it’s short for “petroleum derivitive.” Or maybe “refined petroleum derivitive.”

    Calling a liquid fuel gas seems way stupid to me. At least we spell color right. :-)

  91. Janice Moore says:

    Hey, I just came upon something that MIGHT explain the stubborn tendency of many of us to call “frac’ing” (per industry experts), “fracking.”

    Cracking is the number one process for the commercial production of gasoline. In 1913, thermal cracking was invented by William Meriam Burton, a process that employed heat and high pressures.

    Catalytic Cracking
    Eventually, catalytic cracking replaced thermal cracking in gasoline production. Catalytic cracking is the application of catalysts that create chemical reactions, producing more gasoline. The catalytic cracking process was invented by Eugene Houdry in 1937.

    [Source: http://inventors.about.com/od/gstartinventions/a/gasoline.htm%5D

    (I was TRYING to find out how the term “gasoline” came to be — I’m giving up; it’s nearly 10pm and I’m tired.)

  92. John Mason says:

    @ Eternal Optimist:

    “you want your great grandchildren to live in the 1980′s. and thank you for it”
    Good Lord no! – the music was utterly crap!

  93. Tom Harley says:

    This is what a gas-fired power plant looks like in real life, no visible emissions, quiet, clean and unobtrusive: http://pindanpost.com/2013/08/10/frakked/

  94. Tom Harley says:

    Western Australia’s solar subsidies slashed, causing an outbreak of severe language from someone here in Broome who spent $32,000 on solar panels for his house. http://pindanpost.com/2013/08/09/solars-boondoggle-slashed/
    Pictured are a solar system and batteries for a remote resort, the perfect use for such a system.

  95. Man Bearpig says:

    pyeatte says:
    August 9, 2013 at 7:52 am

    Perfect example where a cartoon reflects reality. The left is trying to turn our energy supply system into the world’s biggest “Rube-Goldberg” machine – it costs a fortune, is incredibly complex and accomplishes nothing useful. Of course it does accomplish what the left wants – poverty, misery and loss of freedom.
    ————–
    Very true and what make good left wing voters ? yep – those in poverty, misery and those that have no freedom.

  96. Man Bearpig says:

    … continued …
    But of course they wouldn’t write ‘Vote for us and get poverty, misery and lose your freedom.’ in their manifestos or hustings placards would they!

  97. Mr Green Genes says:

    Tom in Texas says:
    August 9, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    “We call our liquid fuel petrol, they call the same thing gas even though its not – go figure. ;-)”

    I’d guess petrol is short for petroleum, which it isn’t.
    Gas (liquid fuel in the U.S.) is short for gasoline, which it is.
    Gaseous gas is called natural gas (or NG).

    =========================================================
    Hmm. A case of “”two nations divided by a common language” methinks.

    Ric Werme (” At least we spell color right”) – I nearly rose to the bait but managed to sppress the rge ;-)

  98. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From Janice Moore on August 9, 2013 at 10:01 pm:

    (I was TRYING to find out how the term “gasoline” came to be — I’m giving up; it’s nearly 10pm and I’m tired.)

    *ahem*

    Wikipedia, Gasoline: Etymology and Terminology.

  99. Aelfrith says:

    Just a small point the well they are drilling is looking for oil.

  100. Nial says:

    “Not necessarily – if you build a smart grid then you can counter intermittency. Not yet done, but apparently achievable, especially if you include other tech such as solar PV, wave, tidal, nuclear, etc.”

    Kit, as someone who is apparently doing a PhD in Carbon Capture I’d have thought you’d have had a good enough awareness of power generation and distribution to realise this is b*ll*cks.

    “Apparently achieveable”.
    Have you talked to any power distribution engineers?

    The grid has worked _because_ it’s been a rigidly controlled backbone that consumers can rely on to supply thier electricity on demand.

  101. richardscourtney says:

    taobabe:

    You advocated solar power and asked what was wrong with it. I answered your question and at August 9, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385757

    you have replied

    richardscourtney says:

    …because some people want to switch their lights on and not off when the Sun goes down.

    ___________
    Richard, there are such things as solar batteries for home, business, and utility use. You wouldn’t be left energy-less at night.

    No! There are NOT “such things” for use at significant scale.

    If you could invent a battery that would store sufficient electricity for “utility use” then you would make a fortune. It would reduce the need for power stations by about a third by storing power from times of low demand for use in times of high demand.

    Richard

  102. starzmom says:

    We have been frac’ing successfully in Kansas since the 1940s, with no water well contamination. It’s been a very successful technology. Many wells are in the middle of cultivated fields; no problem with the crops.

  103. Steve Dove says:

    “If you could invent a battery that would store sufficient electricity for “utility use” then you would make a fortune. It would reduce the need for power stations by about a third by storing power from times of low demand for use in times of high demand. ”

    http://www.dvice.com/2013-2-10/texas-switches-worlds-biggest-battery

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-17/japan-to-install-battery-in-hokkaido-to-ease-solar-pressure.html

    http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2012-01/china-builds-worlds-largest-battery-36-megawatt-hour-behemoth

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/jul/29/biggest-battery-energy-technology-trial

  104. richardscourtney says:

    Steve Dove:

    Many thanks for your post at August 10, 2013 at 8:42 am.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1386269

    As the links you provide demonstrate, there is much work in many places attempting to devise large-scale energy storage.

    The essential problem is safety.
    A fuel is a store of energy and it needs to release the stored energy in a controlled manner. Burn a kilo of coal and a kilo of gelignite and the coal releases more energy than the gelignite, but the gelignite releases its energy faster. Few would try to warm their hands with burning gelignite!

    However, a safe and large-scale energy storage system for use to ‘smooth’ the supply of electricity available to a grid would have immense benefits.

    It would be advantageous if a tiny fraction of the money being wasted on subsidising windfarms were expended on research of the kinds your links report. Perhaps WUWT readers could attempt to promote this?

    Again, thanks.

    Richard

  105. Robin Hewitt says:

    I live in Sussex. Balcombe didn’t seem to care who drilled where until the TV cameras arrived.

    Sussex oil wells usually have those “nodding donkey” type pumps things at the well head so they are a bit of a noisy blot on the landscape but the kids think them fun.

    RB: “Brighton even has the Greens in control of the city council and a right mess they are making of it”…

    There is little doubt that the gays, not the greens, have taken over Brighton. Parking has become expensive but apart from that I think they are doing a wonderful job. It’s clean, tidy, well mowed and trimmed. The nightlife is exceptional regardless of your persuasion, almost full employment and the shopping is to die for.

  106. Kevin Kilty says:

    Kit Carruthers says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:35 am

    It’s funny, but I did notice that the Single Shale Well does not produce electricity. The power plant should be included for a fair comparison.”

    Indeed, as should the multiple horizontal wells extending for kilometres from the main well, the fugitive methane releases, the other wells in the areas, the equipment required to be constantly kept on site for well work-over, and the potentially polluted groundwater over several square km.

    But that’s OK, because shale gas is extracted by cuddly fluffy companies with only our best interests at heart ;-)

    The well doesn’t produce electricity. It produces liquid and gas fuels. Yes, you have to add the power plant or refinery or gas processing plant, but these have small footprint per unit of energy.

    Oh, yes. Multiple horizontal wells extending for miles. And at 8,000 or 10,000 feet below ground surface they are truly an eyesore. Contaminated water? Look, if your faucet dispenses water that can catch fire, I’d guess your well intercepts a coal seam and was improperly completed. The only place I know where groundwater is contaminated is Pavillion, Wyoming, and no one can quite figure out how it got contaminated. The investigators did a lousy job of drilling and completing their exploration wells. Maybe there is some contamination from poor disposal methods in places. Not a huge problem in any event. Groundwater at 8,000 feet below ground surface is already contaminated–full of dissolved solids, gas, and oil–this is not drinking water

    Fugitive methane is waste (wasted profit), and all reasonable companies find leaks and stop them.

    While the contentious issue is hydraulic fracturing, it is actually horizontal drilling technology combined with fracturing that has led to our oil boom.

  107. Canman says:

    alexwade@3:56,

    I have a fractfact for you: Rapidly lowering population will be humane.

  108. Canman says:

    Another suggestion for Josh: A bunch of frustrated, swearing workers with a fleet of futuristic construction vehicles, all sporting a micro fusion power pack, trying to dismantle all those windmills, while a single, whistling worker turns a valve in the close direction on the gas wellhead.

  109. dbstealey says:

    Canman says:

    “alexwade@3:56,

    “I have a fractfact for you: Rapidly lowering population will be humane.”

    Yes! Go! Either of you. Doesn’t matter. Show us the way! Show us by your selfless example. Show us how ‘lowering population’ should be done. We are your eager students.

    I just love these frank discussions.

  110. Janice Moore says:

    Mr. D. B. (in your ear),
    I think Alex Wade’s list has been misunderstood by some of us WUWTers. He was, I think, listing facts of which the Fantasy Science Club would approve. Mr. Wade (and Can Man) are being sarcastic, I think. Can Man was just adding another AGW junk fact to the junk fact list of “Fracfacts.”

    A fractfact is something that is based on emotion, twisted logic, or made-up facts…

    [Alex Wade at 9:56AM]

    ************************

    Thank you, Kevin Knoebel, for the “gasoline” etymology (1:18AM). I appreciate your kindness to a tired (and now, here I am again, tired!) ally. I should have, I suppose, tried wiki, — AHEM — #[:)] — but, I really do not trust the accuracy of that riki-tiki thing. It may be right, or it may not… . What I read there sounded great!

    BTW — I tried to tell you this when I first saw you had returned, here goes again — glad you are back! Hope all is well. (I pray for you) (how’s the “goal”? going? — hope God is saying, “Yes” about that prayer!)

  111. mwhite says:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/10233955/The-town-where-fracking-is-already-happening.html

    “It is not a new technology, we have had 200 wells fracked in England and no one has even noticed.”

  112. johnmarshall says:

    Balcombe is not gas but oil exploration and no fracking planned. Hole diameter 6ins. This information from the CEO of the drilling company

  113. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From Janice Moore on August 10, 2013 at 10:45 pm:

    BTW — I tried to tell you this when I first saw you had returned, here goes again — glad you are back! Hope all is well. (I pray for you) (how’s the “goal”? going? — hope God is saying, “Yes” about that prayer!)

    Well, I’d been driving around an old Plymouth Neon, that developed a slow coolant leak. Started fixing, hoped it’s just a hose and not the radiator, as the A/C bolts right to it, and the replacement’s likely more than the vehicle’s worth.

    So I thought hard, looked around, dug deep, and got a good Jeep Grand Cherokee for $3K cash. Working A/C for the mother, 4×4 for the Pennsylvania winters, and all-in-all great driving and spacious. Only 13.5 mpg per the computer display, which is actually better than the old pick-up truck. Just what we needed.

    Tonight, it got rear ended. In town, I’m stopped at a light, and some moron rams me when he should’ve been braking. I’m fine, I think, so far. I heard stuff breaking, Jeep didn’t get pushed too far forward. Look in the mirror, other guy’s moving, looks OK. I’m thinking, fine, now we exchange info.

    Wait, he’s backing up. What the ****, he’s running away down a side street!

    Community happens. Nice locals heard the noise, came out of their homes. While I’m talking to 911 on my cell, they’re saying what they saw and heard, it looked like a Ford Focus, etc. One went down that alley, brought back large plastic pieces that fell off the vehicle. Cop came, the cruiser followed the coolant trail.

    Then 911 calls back, they got called away, they’ll be back. Etc. I was almost an hour hanging out with the nice strangers. Cop came back, they got the guy, didn’t need witnesses, didn’t even need the pieces, community went home.

    In the cruiser’s headlights, I could see the Jeep’s damage. Just imagine rounded hood wedging under plastic-covered bumper, pushing in gas tank somewhat. No broken rear lights, hatch still opens fine.

    It’s presumably drivable, as I drove it home. But it needs work, which his insurance shall pay for if they don’t total it out instead. BTW, it’s one of those Jeep SUV’s that missed the recent recall although it was one of the groups originally fought over, with the gas tank largely behind the rear bumper but the bottom is lower and visible, unobstructed direct hit from behind possible, that allegedly can leak and lead to a quick all-engulfing inferno when the vehicle is rear-ended.

    I keep odd hours. Figuring in the 3-hour difference between PA and WordPress (Pacific) posting times…

    You posted you were hoping all is well, about ten minutes after the collision, around 1:35AM EDT. You were thinking about my wellbeing, prior to writing, right about when I got hit.

    The reply is, all is not well, as it looks like I have to finally put the Neon back together, possibly today. But it could have been much worse, like if I had been hit like that in the Neon. Which I might have except for that slow coolant leak. (Little thing leads to larger thing which goes to something else then…)

    Feel free to keep praying, Janice. Seems to be working.

  114. JohnM says:

    The UK power supply industry has decided to go for diesel for short-term-supply:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2362762/The-dirty-secret-Britains-power-madness-Polluting-diesel-generators-built-secret-foreign-companies-kick-theres-wind-turbines–insane-true-eco-scandals.html

    And is also using battery back-up as well:

    http://spectrum.ieee.org/energywise/energy/the-smarter-grid/uk-launches-europes-largest-energy-storage-trial

    Not much hope of nuclear, as all the major political parties have serious green tints now, and nuclear is expensive…with the government not wanting to pay.

    As for Brightons greens….they also think democracy is a bad idea….if they want to increase the local taxes above a few percent (and they do) they have to hold a local referendum (no choice, it’s law). They think that is a terrible idea and are moaning fit to wear your ears down.

  115. “Bill says:
    August 9, 2013 at 10:08 am”

    Largely agree with you, Bill. For some reason (which I can’t possibly fathom), those replying to my comments believe me to be a fully paid up member of the wind lobbyists. I’m not. But stating that won’t stop the personal attacks (“hypocrite”, “fool”, etc.). Neither will explicitly stating that I am not against gas. To respond to Anthony, it doesn’t make me a hypocrite to recognise the issues which come with a technology – if I had said that I was opposed to gas and that we shouldn’t be using it, then yes you could fairly brand me as hypocritical. My problem, then, is that the issues around shale gas are not fairly represented. Note that I haven’t said “wind turbines don’t kill birds” and neither am I denying that energy companies aren’t exploiting subsidies to build wind farms where they are inappropriate. I also have not said that “shale gas contaminates groundwater”, I said it “possibly” could – a subtle difference which seems to eluded several on here.

    To reply to the chap from Aberdeen who states decades between well work overs – if you are talking about North Sea wells, then yes this is true, since gas accumulations are in sandstones with good permeability and porosity, therefore fracing is not necessary. I will be happy to admit being wrong with respect to shale gas, but having attended talks from various shale gas industry reps and academics, my impression is that each well drilled requires constant or regular work to exploit it. But I will concede if an expert puts me straight. And as for no heat in winter from solar gain, you have not experienced a properly insulated and temperature controlled property! See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passive_house I know several people who live in such houses, and their fuel bill (electricity) is tiny (£20 a quarter) year-round.

    “Nial says:
    August 10, 2013 at 1:52 am”

    “Bollocks” you say? I said “apparently” because that is the view of Andrew Hiorns of the National Grid. I’m not an engineer and I’ve not talked to grid engineers, but I’m sure Andrew has. If you have 15-20 minutes, you can see what he has to say here: http://glocast.com/webcasts/global_energy_systems_conference_2013/2.9_Andrew_Hiorns.html If you don’t have time, you can skip to his last slide. If you disagree with him, you should let him know directly.

  116. Just Steve says:

    @LeastMostWanted talks about the supposed horrors being promulgated in North Dakota because of some pictures.

    Well, how about a first hand account, from someone who works in the dreaded fracking industry. I own a sand hauling rig, and have been going to oil wells for close to two years, in North Dakota and Texas.

    First, the ground water scare tactic. Maybe they have some problems in the Marcellus formation, where the gas is relatively shallow, but I can tell you groundwater contamination in the Bakken is virtually impossible. Most wells are at least two miles deep, well below the water table. The chance of a well casing breaking above water table depth is small, no more chance of that happening than a water well casing breaking.

    While a well is being drilled and then fracked, there is a lot equipment around, and I can tell you from personal experience if ANY foreign substance hits thenground the oil company representative on site will shut everything down right now. True story: guy can’t get to the porta john in time and relieves himself on the well pad. Company rep. gets supervisor from guy’s company on the phone and wants a full environmental report filed, to include approximate amount of urine, as this was, in his eyes a foreign substance and required said report. If any amount of oil or diesel fuel hits the ground the area is immediately remediated, no questions. Safety and environmental education is a staple of the industry, and no one is exempt. (Sand is not considered a contaminant, for obvious reasons. Whatever is left on the ground is incorporated in the final pad cleanup)

    Rather than cringe at some photos, go to a frac site. It’s noisy, there’s a LOT of engines spewing the dreaded CO2 into the air, and a lot of activity is going on. But you’ll see nothing that closely resembles an environmental disaster in the making. What you will see is people doing a job that helps supply us with the cheap energy your favored windmills cannot.

    BTW, LeastMostWanted, have you seen the study that shows in order to supply the entire globe’s electricity needs in 25 years we’d have to use every spare foot of empty space we have now, nd then some? In other words, wind can never supply any significant portion of our electricity needs. Wind may, MAY, be economical on an individual basis (and that is highly debatable), but for mass usage? Not!

  117. richardscourtney says:

    Kit Carruthers:

    In reply to me, at August 9, 2013 at 9:13 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385507

    you made a ridiculous assertion concerning the intermittent supply of electricity from windfarms, saying

    if you build a smart grid then you can counter intermittency. Not yet done, but apparently achievable, especially if you include other tech such as solar PV, wave, tidal, nuclear, etc.

    In my response to that post, at August 9, 2013 at 10:36 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385574

    I replied to that untrue assertion saying

    That is fanciful and wishful thinking which is on a par with claiming the country could be powered by unicorn farts. I do not have time or space here to fully explain all that is wrong with that so I merely point out that the grid – be it “smart” or not – merely distributes electricity and does not generate it.

    Hence, the grid cannot “counter intermittency” because it has no possibility of distributing electricity from windfarms when the windfarms are not producing electricity.

    And if you have adequate nuclear for when there is no power from windfarms then there is no rational reason for the windfarms.

    I notice that you ignored my rebuttal of your silly statement.

    However, your silly statement was described as being

    pigs fly

    by WillR at August 9, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385702

    in his detailed explanation of grid operation in Ontario which he concludes saying

    Wind is uncontrollable. All the statistical manipulation in the world can only give the appearance of usefulness.

    I notice that you also ignored WillR’s rebuttal of your silly statement.

    Then Nial said at August 10, 2013 at 1:52 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1385998

    Kit, as someone who is apparently doing a PhD in Carbon Capture I’d have thought you’d have had a good enough awareness of power generation and distribution to realise this is b*ll*cks.

    “Apparently achieveable”.
    Have you talked to any power distribution engineers?

    The grid has worked _because_ it’s been a rigidly controlled backbone that consumers can rely on to supply thier electricity on demand.

    and you have replied to that at August 11, 2013 at 8:53 am

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/09/friday-funny-fracktional-thinking/#comment-1386965

    Your reply says

    “Bollocks” you say? I said “apparently” because that is the view of Andrew Hiorns of the National Grid. I’m not an engineer and I’ve not talked to grid engineers, but I’m sure Andrew has. If you have 15-20 minutes, you can see what he has to say here: http://glocast.com/webcasts/global_energy_systems_conference_2013/2.9_Andrew_Hiorns.html If you don’t have time, you can skip to his last slide. If you disagree with him, you should let him know directly.

    Aha! The good old tactic of providing evasions together with an appeal to authority fallacy!

    Have “you talked to any power distribution engineers”?
    You don’t say, but you do mention one, so it seems you have not.

    Why should anybody contact Andrew Hiorns?
    You are being asked to justify the silly assertion which you – not Hiorns – made on WUWT.

    What does that slide you mention show?
    You don’t say but you claim it explains how the impossible can be made possible.
    If you can justify that claim in support of your silly assertion then do. But don’t set other people the ‘homework’ of watching the video then finding the slide, studying it, and deciding if it shows what you claim.
    It is your responsibility to justify your silly assertion that the grid can distribute electricity from windfarms at times when the windfarms are not generating electricity so that electricity from windfarms does not exist.

    Arm waving, evasions, and setting homework do not cut it.

    Richard

  118. Jeff Alberts says:

    Les Johnson said:

    Lastly, at the risk of being a Pirate of Pendant, the “correct” terms and spelling is the noun “frac” and its verb “fracing”.

    Is your jewelry really relevant? Oh, maybe you meant “pedant”. In that case. FAIL!

  119. Les Johnson says:

    Jeff: sigh. Guilty as charged.

  120. RACookPE1978 says:

    Jeff Alberts says:
    August 11, 2013 at 4:13 pm (replying to)

    Les Johnson said:

    Lastly, at the risk of being a Pirate of Pendant, the “correct” terms and spelling is the noun “frac” and its verb “fracing”.

    I jest cannot face EVER pronounciating the word “frace” in public.
    Lettuce from hear and forever after, use the common “fracking” simply because – otterwise being pound wise and penny foolish – the term will will make its user sound fracingly foolish.

  121. Les Johnson says:

    Kit carruthers: your

    To reply to the chap from Aberdeen who states decades between well work overs – if you are talking about North Sea wells, then yes this is true, since gas accumulations are in sandstones with good permeability and porosity, therefore fracing is not necessary.

    Whether a well is fractured or not has very little to do if needs workover. What is in the gas or oil is more important. A workover is usually due to plugging by migrating solids, asphaltenes, scale, or water blocks. Corrosion and downhole equipment failures are other causes.

    I will be happy to admit being wrong with respect to shale gas, but having attended talks from various shale gas industry reps and academics, my impression is that each well drilled requires constant or regular work to exploit it. But I will concede if an expert puts me straight

    I am an expert in conventional and shale gas. And yes, you are wrong. All of the workover scenarios I listed can be mitigated by a good completion design..

    And as for no heat in winter from solar gain, you have not experienced a properly insulated and temperature controlled property! See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passive_house I know several people who live in such houses, and their fuel bill (electricity) is tiny (£20 a quarter) year-round.

    You would be wrong here, too. I have owned energy efficient houses in Canada and Texas.
    PV, solar gain, high efficiency heating, on demand hot water, low flow toilets, 12 inch roof insulation, 6 inch wall insulation, all LED, etc.

    My energy bills were tiny, compared to the neighbours. With a smart meter to make the comparison, my bills were usually 50-80% less.

    From your phrasing, you are not one of the people people paying 20 quid a month. Which only reinforces my statement that the 1 1/2 hours of January daylight in Edinburgh is not contributing much heat.

  122. Les Johnson says:

    sigh….1 1/2 hours of sunlight, not daylight.

  123. Jeff Alberts says:

    Les Johnson says:
    August 11, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    Jeff: sigh. Guilty as charged.

    ;)

    It’s all good. We can poke fun at one another once in a while.

  124. Les Johnson says:

    Yeah, but its much more fun to be the ‘poker’ rather than the ‘poked’.

  125. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Les Johnson said on August 11, 2013 at 9:39 pm:

    Yeah, but its much more fun to be the ‘poker’ rather than the ‘poked’.

    Would you two like to get a room?

  126. Kajajuk says:

    Kit Carruthers says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:35 am
    ———————
    It is funny, but could also show the paved road that brings in the many transport trucks a day bring water and other “fluids” to (and from) the site as well as a drained lake (or aquifer) to supply the process. It could also show the “waste ponds” to contain the toxic effluent.
    But then the comedy would admittedly be much darker…

    A delightful Fox hunt, enjoy…

  127. Kajajuk says:

    A lot of times ideas could be exceptionally wonderful; sometimes having the idea is where discover comes from.

  128. Kajajuk says:

    In the spirit of the age of amorphous info i include this funny cartoon…

  129. Kajajuk says:

    This gave me a warm fuzzy that i had to share; that’s my commitment to focusing on integrity!

  130. Chuck Nolan says:

    Matthew R Marler says:
    August 9, 2013 at 8:29 am
    It’s funny, but I did notice that the Single Shale Well does not produce electricity. The power plant should be included for a fair comparison.
    ——————————————
    Absolutely.
    Let’s include all of the land from well to power generation.
    Take one ng well
    estimate the number of electrical power plants it could support
    and calculate watts per acre.

    The we match the power from wind mills.
    calculate all the land needed to generate the same power.
    Just for the fun of it we could include animal kills per acre.
    cn
    Is there any effect from slowing down the wind?

  131. Les Johnson says:

    kadaka: I did not even see that double entendre in my last post. So, I will do the only sensible thing, and beat a hasty and graceless retreat….

  132. Peter Hannan says:

    Dear Bloke down the pub,

    I’m a member of the Co-operative Society too; it’s one of the many institutions that (formal and informal – the local pub is one of the latter) make British democracy what it is. Living in Mexico, I can’t exercise my membership so easily; but, please, don’t abandon it. Democracy and democratic institutions make mistakes, get temporarily hijacked by fads, or simply respond to a perceived ‘consensus’. The Co-operative Society and its associated businesses and bank do many good things, and try to adopt an ethical stance on issues. For me, they get it more or less right on many issues. Don’t bail out, on one issue, get in there if you can and debate it. If the critical and positive thinkers leave an organisation, who’s left? Seriously, a friendly comment.

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