Archive: 2013

Guest editorial: Montana officials should seek facts on coal exports – Billings Gazette, Dec. 20, 2013

December 20, 2013
http://billingsgazette.com/news/opinion/guest/guest-opinion-montana-officials-should-seek-facts-on-coal-exports/article_3f9e8bb3-c651-5c99-8e32-9441f010440f.html By Steve Charter Just who is Montana Attorney General Tim Fox working for anyway? Recently, he wrote to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the State of Washington urging them NOT to study a proposed coal port’s impacts on Montana. The proposed Millenium Bulk Terminal at Longview, Washington, would ship about 48 million tons of Wyoming and Montana coal to Asia annually. A Dec. 18 guest opinion by state Rep. Austen Knudsen echoes that same notion. Northern Plains Resource Council is...
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On the high plains, an almost invisible coal industry counts on Asia – Marketplace, Dec. 17, 2013

December 18, 2013
http://www.marketplace.org/topics/world/coal-play/high-plains-almost-invisible-coal-industry-counts-asia By Sarah Gardner Not far from the place where Sitting Bull defeated Custer, Cloud Peak Energyoperates one of the biggest coal mines in the U.S. Not that the casual visitor to southeastern Montana would know. The Spring Creek mine is located way off a secondary highway in Decker, a town so small it has a one-room schoolhouse. Travelers can drive miles of rural highway without seeing another car. The mine’s modest sign could easily be missed. A smaller one under it warns “No Trespassing.” But...
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Board: BNSF can require coal-dust suppression – Associated Press, Dec. 17, 2013

December 17, 2013
http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/board-bnsf-can-require-coal-dust-suppression/article_038a952f-c226-56b6-beb3-e98cad21c67d.html SEATTLE — The federal Surface Transportation Board has decided that BNSF Railway can require coal shippers to use certain methods to reduce the amount of coal dust lost from rail cars leaving coal mines in Wyoming and Montana. In a decision last Wednesday, the board said shippers challenging the railway's coal-loading rules had not shown the measures were unreasonable. It did, however, find one provision related to liability unreasonable. BNSF spokeswoman Courtney Wallace said Tuesday the board's decision ensures coal dust...
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Beartooth drilling protest continues – Billings Gazette – 12/12/13

December 12, 2013
Beartooth drilling protest continues  By Jan Falstad Deb Muth of the Carbon County Resource Council speaks at a rally Wednesday to protest oil drilling and possible fracking along the Beartooth Front. Drilling the Belfry well Denver-based Energy Corporation of America will wait until spring to start drilling an oil well three miles east of Belfry. The procedure is: -- Drill a vertical well. -- Insert electrical probes to read the shale rock. -- Determine whether the formation has low water and high hydrocarbons or the reverse. -- Take core...
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Drilling booms, long-term prosperity don’t necessarily go hand in hand — study – E&E, Dec. 12, 2013

December 12, 2013
OIL AND GAS: Scott Streater E&E reporter A new study challenges the long-held assumption that oil and gas drilling booms bring long-term economic prosperity to host communities, instead finding that the longer energy extraction activity is a major component of a local economy, the bigger the negative impacts. The 18-page study released December 11 by Bozeman-based research group Headwaters Economics concludes that "long-term oil and gas specialization" ultimately results in lower per-capita income and higher crime rates, among other things. "Our findings call into question the...
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Beartooth drilling protest continues – Billings Gazette, December 12, 2013

December 12, 2013
http://billingsgazette.com/news/local/beartooth-drilling-protest-continues/article_cddc3af6-876c-53b9-9075-dfe02086ed81.html By Jan Falstad A Denver energy company will begin drilling an oil well near Belfry — and possibly use hydraulic fracking — this spring, despite protests in Billings on Wednesday by about 80 opponents. Members of the Carbon County Resource Council and other local environmental groups held a rally in Billings and handed a petition with 4,693 signatures to Energy Corporation of America’s local office. Opponents also spoke for two hours before the Montana Board of Oil and Gas Conservation. The comments...
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Red Lodge residents express fears of Bakken-like atmosphere – Billings Gazette – 12/11/13

December 12, 2013
Oil well near Belfry approved; Red Lodge residents talk fears of Bakken-like atmosphere at town meeting Buy Now PAUL RUHTER/Gazette Staff Red Lodge attorney Kent Young makes a few comments during a forum Tuesday on drilling along the Beartooth Front. December 10, 2013 9:05 pm  •  By Jan Falstad jfalstad@billingsgazette.com 16 Beartooth drilling protest continues A Denver energy company will begin drilling an oil well near Belfry — and possibly use hydraulic fracking — this spring, despite protests in B… Read more RED LODGE — Even before Red Lodge-area residents...
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Oil well near Belfry approved; Red Lodge residents talk fears of Bakken-like atmosphere at town meeting – Billings Gazette Dec. 11, 2013

December 11, 2013
http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/oil-well-near-belfry-approved-red-lodge-residents-talk-fears/article_8fc0f255-79d6-5e5f-98fe-8096dfc83a03.html Oil well near Belfry approved; Red Lodge residents talk fears of Bakken-like atmosphere at town meeting By Jan Falstad Billings Gazette Dec. 11, 2013 RED LODGE — Even before Red Lodge-area residents started their meeting Tuesday evening about expanded oil-and-gas development in their backyard, one permit to drill a well near Belfry was a done deal. Opponents missed a step while requesting a hearing to protest the drilling permit application by Energy Corporation of America. So they lost their chance to challenge the permit...
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Guest opinion: Seek more facts, not less, on coal port – Great Falls Tribune, Dec. 6, 2013

December 10, 2013
http://www.greatfallstribune.com/article/20131206/OPINION/312060037/Montana-opinion-Seek-more-facts-not-less-coal-port?nclick_check=1 By Steve Charter Just who is Tim Fox working for anyway? Recently, Montana’s attorney general sent a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the state of Washington urging them not to study a proposed coal port’s impacts on Montana. The proposed Millennium Bulk Terminal at Longview, Wash., would ship about 48 million tons of Wyoming and Montana coal to Asia each year. Northern Plains Resource Council is disappointed that our attorney general — who is supposed to represent Montana’s citizens and...
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Residents plan protest over Beartooth fracking plan this week – Billings Gazette, Dec. 9, 2013

December 9, 2013
http://billingsgazette.com/news/local/residents-plan-protest-over-beartooth-fracking-plan-this-week/article_edab6031-aa17-53ef-be8a-6a80b2679df6.html By Jan Falstad Residents concerned with plans by a Denver energy company to drill about 50 oil and natural gas wells near the Beartooth Mountains — and more wells in the Bighorn Basin — are planning a rally in Billings on Wednesday. Red Lodge resident Deb Muth, who chairs the Carbon County Resource Council, said the rally is set for 12:30 p.m. on Dec. 11 at the Yellowstone County Courthouse. She expects people from Carbon, Stillwater and Yellowstone counties to attend. “We just want to...
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Billings, Montana 59101
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