I do NOT want to live next door to coalbed methane
Via Deep Audit, a truly horrific report about coalbed methane
The coalbed methane boom that is spreading across parts of the Powder River Basin of Wyoming and Montana is in its infancy and is out of control. There are about 1,000 wells on stream now with as many as 15,000 pending permits. Already 20,000 acre feet of water has been pumped out of the coal aquifer and with a life of 12 to 15 years for the project, hundreds of millions of barrels of water will be removed and either dumped into an existing drainage system or stored in newly created ponds or reservoirs.
Ducks, fish and plants will flourish until industry turns off the water and the pseudo-environments return to pre-existing conditions. Recently, another rancher friend of mine attended a coalbed methane fair where industry suggested the ranchers affected by this new surplus of water should take advantage of it. “Try growing cranberries, try hydroponic tomatoes; how about beer?” they offered. “What about ranching?” was her reply.
Coalbed methane extraction represents a new technology. The 10-year track record of coalbed methane development in the San Juan Basin has caused explosive levels of methane to be vented to the surface, killed 100-year-old trees, lowered groundwater levels, ruined water sources, killed wildlife and recently has been linked to underground coal fires that belch carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulfide and methane to the surface, where temperatures reach 500 degrees F.