Sunday 23rd of January 2022

mysterious high methane emissions from cities like new york in the atmosphere...


Atmospheric methane is a powerful greenhouse gas and an important component of tropospheric ozone production. It is essential to understand its emissions in order to estimate its impact on climate and air quality and to formulate strategies to control it. Plant et al. report aircraft observations of six major cities on the East Coast of the United States, which show that their methane emissions are about twice as large as those reported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. They determine that these emissions are predominantly due to losses associated with natural gas transmission and distribution, or from currently unknown sources.

Geophys. Res. Lett.10.1029/2019GL082635 (2019).


Picture at top New York. Gus Leonisky

a warning from wayne swan

Labor’s federal president, Wayne Swan, has warned climate change will “completely reshape global, national and local politics” over the next five to 10 years in the way that other seismic external events such as mass-casualty terror attacks have changed the global conversation.

In an interview with Guardian Australia, Swan predicted just as the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington DC upended global politics, “somewhere not far down the track there will be a dreadful climate event that will similarly reshape global and national politics, and it could well be on our own doorstep”.

Swan acknowledged the May election was a setback for climate action in Australia, “particularly in Queensland”. But he said the Labor party has to stick the course while also safeguarding the interests of workers in the transition to low emissions “because we are realists, because we trust experts and the science, because we take our responsibilities for this great country and for our planet seriously”.


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using gas to extract gas?...

Four years after New York announced the state was banning hydraulic fracturing (fracking), Tioga Energy Partners, LLC has filed an application with the state to frack for natural gas, but there's a catch. The company is proposing to swap propane into the industry standard mix that usually calls for water.

Environmental advocates consider this application to use liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), and specifically a propane gel, an attempt to circumvent New York's 2015 ban on fracking for fossil fuels.

This idea was first proposed the same year the state banned high volume hydraulic fracturing. At the time, pro-fracking industry news site Marcellus Drilling News described it as “a brilliant move by the landowners in Tioga County.”

But New York’s activist community, which led the years-long effort to secure the prohibition on fracking in the first place, doesn’t agree, according to Yvonne Taylor of the nonprofit Seneca Lake Guardian.

“New York is a front runner in the charge to wean ourselves off of fossil fuels while we stare down a Global Climate Emergency,” Taylor told DeSmog via email. “Governor Cuomo's Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) was recently signed into law and is designed to transition New York off of fossil fuels in the next 30 years. Approval of using propane to extract fracked gas flies in the face of this initiative, and must be flatly denied.”

A broad coalition of groups is opposing the potential propane fracking project. Sixteen organizations, including Earthjustice, Catskill Mountainkeeper, Riverkeeper, and the Sierra Club, signed an August 2 letter voicing concerns over the proposal to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). The letter describes the risks of LPG fracking, such as “…groundwater contamination, radioactive wastes, dangers in transport of LPG, harmful air emissions, and direct and indirect impacts upon public health.”

The list doesn't sound all that different than the rash of issues faced by New York’s neighboring state of Pennsylvania, which has welcomed fracking and now grapples with radioactive contaminationair pollution, water pollution, and cancer clusters.

Propane Fracking: Better for the Environment?

Tioga Energy Partners, LLC, which was formed by a group of landowners in Tioga County, New York, is pushing to use propane gel as a fracking fluid and hired the firm Couch White LLP to prepare a draft scoping document as part of New York's environmental review process. In the document, Couch White makes the case for propane fracking by arguing that the process presents far fewer environmental issues — from sourcing and trucking large volumes of freshwater to flaring and dust — than simply fracking with water.

This “lesser of two” evils approach is apparently all Couch White has to work with. Yet the table representing this case makes some questionable claims.

For starters, the firm claims that, unlike with banned hydraulic fracking, fracking with propane would not require significant flaring, or burning of natural gas. However, the plans for this propane fracking project include flaring for 15 days, which is a typical length of time for natural gas wells. Texas allows 10 days of unlimited flaring for new wells and Wyoming allows 15 days. Despite those stated limits, in many oil-producing states, including Texas, flaring happens for much longer and is essentially unregulated.  

While fracking with propane does not require the large amounts of freshwater currently used by the fracking industry, water does have the advantage that — unlike propane — it doesn’t explode.

Even though propane fracking has not been used on any scale comparable to hydraulic fracking, its dangers are already apparent. When propane leaks, it can explode and cause fires, and it already has during early attempts to use the technology in Canada. One 2011 explosion burned about a dozen workers in Alberta, with three others injured while using the technique already that year.

The DEC noted this worker safety risk in its April 2019 letter to Tioga Energy Partners as part of the state environmental review process. The state agency concluded its letter by pointing out that “…Tioga Energy's proposed actions could have potentially important and significant adverse impacts on human health and safety. This includes public health and safety of onsite workers.”

Fracking With Water Is a Bad Investment. Fracking With Propane Is Worse

DeSmog has documented the failing economics of fracking for oil and gas in the U.S. A combination of the process's high costs and low oil and gas prices has resulted in the industry spending approximately a quarter trillion dollars more than it has made in the past decade. And this trend continued in the first quarter of 2019.


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Note: flaring creates a lot of CO2... Gas flaring emits 400 million metric tons of CO2 annually, the same as 77 million automobiles, without producing useful heat or electricity

what's a gas leak between friends?...

E.P.A. to Roll Back Regulations on Methane, a Potent Greenhouse Gas

If the proposal is adopted, the government would no longer require oil and gas companies to inspect for and repair methane leaks from wells and pipelines.

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration laid out on Thursday a far-reaching plan to cut back on the regulation of methane emissions, a major contributor to climate change.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule aims to eliminate federal requirements that oil and gas companies install technology to detect and fix methane leaks from wells, pipelines and storage facilities. It would also reopen the question of whether the E.P.A. had the legal authority to regulate methane as a pollutant.

new york new york...

How Adams Built a Diverse Coalition That Put Him Ahead in the Mayor’s Race

Eric Adams has a significant lead in the New York City mayor’s race thanks to his support from a traditional Democratic coalition of unions and Black and Latino voters.


And says The New York Times about  the possible next mayor of the city in sharp decline... He will have a mighty job... The New York Times continues...:


Eric Adams’s strong showing in New York City’s Democratic primary for mayor reflected his ability to build an old-school political coalition that united Black and Latino voters with unions.

He was able to persuade working-class people, largely outside Manhattan, that he was the best candidate to make the city safe from crime and return it to economic health. But even as he held a 75,000-vote lead on Wednesday night over his closest rival, Maya Wiley, his victory was not assured.

Nearly 70 percent of voters did not choose Mr. Adams, the Brooklyn borough president, as their first choice, and the final outcome will depend on how many of those voters listed him lower on their ballots.

Under the city’s new system of ranked-choice voting, where voters select as many as five candidates in order of preference, thousands of votes will be shifted among the candidates before a final winner is declared. Tens of thousands of absentee ballots must also be counted, and the entire process may take until July 12.


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meanwhile, the text of the NYT ignores the main (weird and work it out — if you don't understand why, ask a friend) incentive: