“Gas Pipelinestan War is All About Gas Pipelines !”

Shazaam. What a fracking surprise. Thousands of men, women and children killed, bombs dropped, beheadings on YouTube, millions displaced – over some competing natural gas pipeline routes. The Shia Gas Line vs the Sunni Gas Line – to Europe. Who the frack would have ever fracking guessed that ? 

Two years after energy analysts were writing about this  – the popular press has figured out what the Syrian Gas Pipeline War is about . . . gas pipelines – including lines that would go through Turkey. Imagine that.

The Syrian war often seems like a big confusing mess but one factor that is not often mentioned could be the key to unlocking the conflict.

Some experts have pointed out that many of the key players have one thing in common:  competing multi billion dollar gas pipelines routes.

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Western firms primed to cash in on Syria’s oil and gas ‘frontier’

This exclusive is published by INSURGE INTELLIGENCE, a crowd-funded investigative journalism project. by Nafeez Ahmed

US, British, French, Israeli and other energy interests could be prime beneficiaries of military operations in Iraq and Syria designed to rollback the power of the ‘Islamic State’ (ISIS) and, potentially, the Bashar al-Assad regime.

A study for a global oil services company backed by the French government and linked to Britain’s Tory-led administration, published during the height of the Arab Spring, hailed the significant “hydrocarbon potential” of Syria’s offshore resources.

The 2011 study was printed in GeoArabia, a petroleum industry journal published by a Bahrain-based consultancy, GulfPetroLink, which is sponsored by some of the world’s biggest oil companies, including Chevron, ExxonMobil, Saudi Aramco, Shell, Total, and BP.

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Dr James Hansen: UK is ‘screwing its children’ with fracking policy

Speaking to Carbon Brief at the COP21 climate conference in Paris, Dr James Hansen, one of the world’s most prominent climate scientists, has strongly criticised the UK government’s pursuit of fracking for shale gas.

Asked what he thought of the UK government’s policy of seeking to copy the US’s fracking revolution, Hansen said:

Well, that’s screwing your children and grandchildren. Because if you do that, then there’s no way to avoid the consequences [of] multi-metre sea-level rise. But we can’t do that. And that’s what the science says crystal clear. And yet politicians pretend not to hear it, or not to understand it.

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How Big Are Fossil Fuel Subsidies? Let’s Make it Clear

Every year, the world spends billions of dollars subsidizing the production, exploration and use of oil, coal and natural gas. By all accounts, these subsidies don’t make sense for the economy or for the environment. They impose significant burdens on government budgets, in many cases more than is spent on health or education, encourage wasteful use of scarce resources and tend to benefit the rich more than the poor. For example, IMF analysis has shown that on average only 3 percent of gasoline and 7 percent of diesel fuel subsidies reach the poorest 20 percent of households. And arecent GSI study found that removing fossil fuel subsidies in 20 countries between now and 2020 could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 11 percent.

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Cuadrilla are to abandon the Becconsall site

REAF press release.

 
It comes as no surprise to members of REAF, Ribble Estuary Against Fracking, that exploratory drilling company Cuadrilla are to abandon the Becconsall site and remove over 150 monitoring stations in the local area. Their failure to comply with time frames and mitigation measures imposed on them by Lancashire County Council  has shown their disregard for the planning process and has left locals with many unanswered questions.
The first application to drill at the site in 2010 slipped through quietly without the need for a committee decision by LCC. Alarm bells soon rang as the  0.99 Hectare site avoided the 1 hectare rule for which an Environmental Impact Assessment would have been compulsory.
 
A time extension and fracking application at the Becconsall site followed in 2012 by which time Cuadrilla had been found responsible for causing 50 seismic events through fracking at their Preese Hall Site near Blackpool.
 
The River Ribble Estuary is designated as a RAMSAR wetland site of international importance as it is home to tens of thousands of European protected geese and swans who spend the winter feeding on the mudflats of the Estuary and in the surrounding fields.
Situated only 700 metres from the Estuary and within a Biological Heritage Site, the Becconsall well posed a threat to the ongoing success of some of our most important wetland migratory species. Concerns were raised by Natural England, Friends of the Earth, Lancs County Council Ecologist  and a REAF commissioned ecology consultant who conducted an extended phase 1 habitat survey.
 
Referencing reports on the failings at Preese Hall and peer reviewed scientific data on the effects of fracking to human health and the environment REAF raised objections to the development of the Becconsall Site.
 
Lancs County Council Development Control Committee gave permission for REAF to present their findings. Immediately after the presentation by REAF members, the applicant withdrew an application which involved hydraulic fracturing of the well. A subsequent application to perforate the well and monitor was passed but the applicant failed to meet conditions and now intends to restore the site next spring back to prime agricultural land.
 
REAF would like to thank all those who have supported us as we continue our work with other communities faced with the dangers of unconventional onshore oil and gas extraction.  
 
ENDS.