« | »

Experts Attack NYT Over Natural Gas Story

From CNN’s Money.Com:

Talk of natural gas bubble draws industry ire

By Steve Hargreaves, June 29, 2011

NEW YORK (CNNMoney)  — Big energy company executives and government researchers are firing back at a recent New York Times story suggesting the recent boom in natural gas production from shale rock is unsustainable and perhaps fraudulent.

"You really have to wonder why the New York Times is campaigning against cleaner-burning, domestically produced natural gas," ExxonMobil Vice President Ken Cohen wrote in a blogpost Monday…

We don’t wonder at all. And we suspect Mr. Cohen doesn’t, either. The New York Times is always against anything that might be good for America. Though that is probably just a coincidence.

The multi-part story, run in the Times Sunday and Monday, cited numerous, anonymous emails from government staffers, industry consultants and energy company executives questioning whether natural gas production from shale rock is really living up to the hype or is instead just another bubble.

And goodness knows we should determine our nation’s future energy plans based on anonymous emails sent to the New York Times. (Who have been on a relentless jihad against ‘fracking’ since they first heard the term.)

The emails, which the Times posted online with the names redacted, say the wells may be running dry much faster than anticipated and could actually lose money.

The story suggests that the industry may be aware of this, and could be concealing it to boost their stock price. Emails quoted in the piece refer to the shale gas companies as "Ponzi schemes" and say they are having an "Enron moment."

It sounds like these natural gas companies have grounds for a lawsuit against the New York Times, who are clearly out to hurt their business by publishing anonymous and probably libelous ‘information.’ And it is obvious it is being done with malicious intent.

The story further accuses the government’s Energy Information Administration of relying too heavily on industry data to make its projections. Many of the emails the paper cites are from EIA staffers.

Monday night EIA struck back, issuing a rare statement, saying the agency’s views on shale gas were "different in significant respects from those outlined in the June 27 article."

Nitpickers. Besides, what is more reliable? An agency’s official position or anonymous emails from purported staffers?

EIA posted the letter it sent to the Times in response to questions from the paper online, noting that shale gas production has risen from 4% of all U.S. gas production to 23% in just 5 years.

"It is clear the data shows that shale gas has become a significant source of domestic natural gas supply," Michael Schaal [sic], EIA’s director of petroleum, natural gas and biofuels analysis, wrote in the letter.

A letter from the chief executive of Chesapeake Energy, another big shale gas company, took a similar tone.

"It is absurd to conclude that shale gas wells are underperforming while America is awash in natural gas," said CEO Aubrey McClendon. "The Times story was obviously motivated by an anti-natural gas agenda."

The next thing you know people will be accusing The Times of having a pro-homosexual agenda.

The letter goes on to say that the company’s production numbers and estimates are verified by various third-party organizations, and any recent production declines are more the result of low natural gas prices

Yeah, well where are their anonymous emails to substantiate these claims?

Shale gas production has taken off in the last few years as new technology has allowed the industry to unlock vast quantities of the domestic fuel. Some say the country now has 100 years worth of natural gas. When used to generate electricity, natural gas burns about twice as cleanly as coal.

The boom has caused a surge in investment, both in the towns where it’s located and in the stock price of the companies that produce it.

And we can’t have any of that.

But it’s not without controversy. To produce the gas, the shale rock needs to be cracked by a process called hydraulic fracturing. Known as "fracking" for short, it involves injecting vast amounts of water, sand and some chemicals deep into the ground.

There have been spills of this fracking fluid before it’s injected into wells which have contaminated local streams. There are also concerns about the disposal of the fluid and other tainted water that comes up with the gas, as well as fears that the natural gas itself may be seeping into drinking water wells as a result of the drilling process.

Most of these stories can be sourced back to the New York Times. And never mind that even the state regulators and environmental groups have said there is no evidence of any such contamination.

Many are calling for tighter regulations on the industry, and the Environmental Protection Agency is studying the procedure.

Again, largely because of the propaganda campaign originating at the New York Times.

This idea that a combination of tighter regulations and questionable production numbers is making shale gas unprofitable may not be as absurd as the industry says it is.

One hedge fund manager in New York City recently told CNNMoney he is betting against shale gas companies for this very reason…

One anonymous hedge fund manager. If he even exists outside the imagination of CNN’s reporter.

Meanwhile, the New York Times’ jihad against America’s best source for clean and abundant energy continues unabated.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, June 30th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Experts Attack NYT Over Natural Gas Story”

  1. Right of the People says:

    The Slimes needs to be sued into extinction!

  2. Papa Louie says:

    There are fears that newsprint ink residue may be contaminating local streams and seeping into drinking water wells as a result of discarded copies of the New York Times. This, as well as other concerns, is why the newspaper business is unsustainable and perhaps fraudulent.

    My claims are just as substantiated as those of the New York Times concerning fracking.

  3. P. Aaron says:

    Doesn’t the Times employ a former ENRON employee as one of it’s chief consultants on economics?

« Front Page | To Top
« | »