Fracking Election News Mostly Good

Fracking Election News  - Tom Shepstone reportsTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW


Tuesday revealed a lot of very good fracking election news, despite some high-profile losses. The war is over and we’re seeing the last skirmishes.

The political advertisements, after barraging us with increasing intensity leading up to Tuesday have now mercifully ended, giving us a respite until maneuvering for the next elections resumes after the holidays. There’s a lot of crowing going on among our fractivist friends about a couple of results, but, overall, the fractivist cause made little progress.

The Bad Fracking Election News

Here’s the bad news from the election, which isn’t that bad at all, really, when one examines things closely:

The Good Fracking Election News

There’s a whole lot more good fracking elections news, however:

  • fracking election newsThe super-freaky radical group know as the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) lost for the fourth time in a row (and by the biggest margin ever) trying to get a fracking ban adopted in the City of Youngstown, Ohio, which doesn’t take its fracking success for granted (like Denton?). This story is worth quoting:

    “Meanwhile, city voters again rejected the anti-fracking Community Bill of Rights charter amendment — the fourth time since May 2013. Supporters of the proposal said they’ll have it back on the ballot until it passes.

    This was the largest margin of defeat — 15.7 percentage points — for the measure first put on the May 2013 ballot by the Community Bill of Rights Committee.

    “That is a very loud and clear message,” said Mike Chadsey, spokesman for the Ohio Oil and Gas Association. “People are not buying the bait and switch, the fear tactics, the scare tactics. Any credibility [the Bill of Rights Committee] had is gone. It’s embarrassing for them…”

    “This is a great margin of victory, and after the fourth time the message should be clear,” said Butch Taylor, business manager for the Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396, which opposed the proposal. “Hopefully we can move on and work together for the positive things — safety, a clean environment and the opportunities for job creation.”

  • There was also news of sanity in New England, where some fractivists would rather they and their neighbors sit in the dark and freeze than have a pipeline built to supply them with needed gas. Tuesday, however, Paul LePage, a proponent of more pipelines, was re-elected in Maine. Massachusetts also flipped to a Republican governor making it less likely opponents will be successful in delaying building of the Tennessee Gas Pipeline across their state. This should help alleviate gas supply bottlenecks in New England that drive the prices up in winter.
  • Then, there was Jesse White, whose name needs no explanation to readers. The fractivists loved the guy and went to the wall for him but he lost big. May his name now be forgotten as the embarrassment he was to Pennsylvania. The success of the street fighter is always short-lived and even more quickly dispensed with once he reveals who he really is.
  • There was also State Representative Rick Mirabito from the Williamsport area, a guy who tried to say he was  pro-gas at times, for obvious reasons, but repeatedly played ball with fractivists on issues such as the Marc-1 Pipeline and supported a severance tax in an area benefitted tremendously by natural gas development. He was defeated by very pro-gas Lycoming County Commissioner Jeff Wheeland.
  • The CELDF also lost another battle in Gates Mills, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, by a huge margin (68% opposed).
  • Maryland elected a very pro-gas governor in Larry Hogan. The current Democrat governor O’Malley had let it move slowly forward, but Hogan is a clear advocate.

There is other news, but the reader will get the drift. Fractivists only win in the short-term and by means of outrageous demagoguery when they do win. Moreover, their victories tend to be short-lived in the face of economic realities, a point made yesterday with regard to New Brunswick, Canada, politics as well. The war is really over, given how much of our natural gas and oil supply is now attributable to fracking. More than half of our oil and gas supply will, before too long, come from fracking. What we are seeing are the last skirmishes being fought here and there.

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6 thoughts on “Fracking Election News Mostly Good

  1. A clear sign that the frackivist war is drawing to close is indeed not in North America. The Saudis dropping their pricing of their oil seems to be a last desperate attempt to kill the shale oil business in America . Perhaps the cheque writing to the ecologists is not being effective to OPECS goals ?


    Tom– your comment on the crowing versus the actual results resonated with me. I think there is more fallout from this issue than you have even covered. If you notice in that Village Voice article Port Ambrose was referred to as an LNG delivery project and not the opposite, which is how the antifracking activist world has referred to it for nearly a year now. I happen to believe this issue needs resolution in NY state. The level of misinformation that is coming from the activists is alarming. The pattern has been that the longer the issue is dragged out the more incoherent the arguments and activism has gotten. The increasingly hysterical and upside down messaging from these activists does nothing for citizens who are not activists which is most of the population. If you want an example of increasingly bad information there is probably nothing more instructive than the websites of the Coalition against the Rockaway Pipeline and the Sane Energy Project. Not only did these folks basically convey completely nonfactual information, they also buried the only real controversy about the Rockaway project which had nothing to do with fracking but with the leasing of historical property in Floyd Bennett Field as part of this project. As background Tom, these historical structures were in disrepair and for those who believe a good deal was made, restoring those structures on the companies dime was seen as a benefit for the park. No matter where one stands on that lease and whether an appropriate or beneficial deal was negotiated by NPS and politicians, the fact is that their were differing opinions about this lease by people other than antifracking activists including NPS employees. My interest in this project has to do with my being a user of the park which has nothing to do with the fracking issue. It was this issue as well as the fact that citizens and park users learned about the bill necessary for this project and the lease after all the congressional testimony on it had already occurred that were and are my primary concerns and this is true for others as well. This particular gentleman likes to bill his photography as photojournalism. It is much more like advertising for his network of friends. This video and the radon bill is also enlightening. My reading of the bill itself is that it doesn’t apppear to even be designed to do what it purports to do at all and this hearing seems completely lopsided . Both industry and agencies with working knowledge on the topic for example are absent. I think the bill and the time spent at the hearing look like a gigantic waste of public servant’s time–which actually has a cost. Not resolving this issue has a cost.


    Tom–I can name too many of the people in this picture and specific myth or misinformation they have personally been responsible for. When I say that activists have done almost nothing but spread misinformation on the rockaway project I mean this from beginning to end and in every way possible at ever step of the way. When I say this is a small world, I mean it. .

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  6. Hey Karen, this is the debris from the Solyndra debacle. Their rational is to broadcast a lie long enough and loud enough and maybe, just maybe, someone will believe it. Wait to you see them choke on this one.

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