NEB to ask producers to use FracFocus website, Only one company authorized to frack wells in federal territory so far by Dan Healing, November 27, 2013, Calgary Herald
The National Energy Board is jumping on the FracFocus.ca bandwagon and will soon be asking companies who drill under its jurisdiction to post online their hydraulic fracturing plans. [Drilling, servicing and perforating chemicals are not disclosed; some are more harmful than frac chemicals. Drilling muds, containing toxic additives are dumped on a agricultural lands, roads and wetlands, without disclosing the toxics to communities harmed by the dumping.] The national agency won’t push its agenda until after the end of the year, said spokeswoman Tara O’Donovan, because the site must be made available in French as well as English. But tracking down participants to ask them to sign a voluntary waiver of their two-year information withholding privileges shouldn’t be difficult, she added. “We’ve actually only currently authorized one hydraulic fracturing operation in the North and that was recently, to ConocoPhillips,” she said. The American producer won approval Oct. 30 to employ “fracking” — where large volumes of water, sand and chemicals are injected under pressure deep underground to break up tight rock and allow oil and gas to flow — at its Canol oil shale discovery near Norman Wells in the Northwest Territories. More applications could be forthcoming, however, as other companies with assets in the region include Husky Energy, Shell, ExxonMobil, Imperial Oil and MGM Energy Corp.
The FracFocus.org website originated in the United States in 2011. A Canadian version was adopted by British Columbia in early 2012 and then, at the end of 2012, by Alberta provincial regulators. Alberta had previously required disclosure [An ERCB (now AER) lawyer claimed otherwise, in writing] but not public disclosure. The site offers well-by-well information on hydraulic fracturing practices and [incomplete information, blanks and trade secrets abound] fluids producers use in their operations, posted within 30 days after the operation has been completed [some are non-compliant, e.g., posted months late]. The NEB said it has signed an agreement with the B.C. Oil and Gas Commission and the U.S.-based Ground Water Protection Council and Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission to participate in the site. “We understand that Canadians demand that hydraulic fracturing be done safely, responsibly and transparently,” NEB chair and CEO Gaetan Caron said in a statement.
[Fracfocus does not make fracing safe, responsible, or transparent, either in Canada or the USA]
In Alberta, companies are required to report the start and finish dates of fracking operations, fluid system components, the purpose of the components, additive ingredients and the maximum concentrations of each ingredient in the system. Alberta Energy Regulator spokesman Bob Curran said a total of 2,555 fracking operations in Alberta had been registered on the website as of Nov. 25. [Numerous postings are non-compliant, contain blanks, trade secrets and list product names instead of chemicals] The site does not give prior notification of fracking. [Emphasis added]
[Refer also to:
The Tip of BC’s Fracking Iceberg, Frac-Focus Toxic Chemical Data, Water Volumes, Fracking Locations, and operators in the Altares Gas Field, North of Hudson’s Hope, BC, Near and Within the Farrell Creek Watershed Area. Appendix B, Altares Gas Field/Operator Map
FracFocus has ‘serious flaws,’ Harvard study says by Mike Soraghan, April 23, 2013, E&E News
Alberta to start using FracFocus as of December 31, 2012 but not for any of the 171,000 previously frac’d wells
ERCB Lawyer to Ernst, April 24, 2012: However, the ERCB does not currently require licensees to provide detailed disclosure of the chemical composition of fracturing fluids.
FracFocus is just a fig leaf for the industry to be able to say they’re doing something in terms of disclosure Voluntary Fracking Reporting? Bloomberg: Chemicals Not Reported, Half of All Wells “Obscured”
Legal loophole keeps fracturing mixes murky by Jennifer Hiller, February 3, 2013, Fuelfix ]