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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Howdy, Boots Smith

Boots Smith Oilfield Services, LLC is currently boring under our city streets installing miles of gas gathering pipelines which transport  UNodorized natural gas through our communities.   Notice how the shale gas industry has turned our middle-class suburbia into war-torn looking zones.   After these contractors leave, most people won't see or perceive the danger flowing just beneath the surface past  homes, schools, and parks.

This tanker truck driver seems to have taken water from a black-bagged fire hydrant yesterday on Harwood Road near Sublett Avenue in Arlington, Texas.   Thankfully, one of our concerned citizens had a camera handy to snap this photo.  Our City's Utilities Dispatcher did confirm with our Public Works Inspector that this hydrant was not allowed to be used.   Seems these guys don't know how to follow rules.  Notice that his tanker truck is on the wrong side of the road. 

Let's hope he used a meter with a city approved backflow protector device according to ordinance 11-018 section 2.08.   God help us.

Monday, January 14, 2013


What's wrong with this picture?  

This child care facility sits 359 feet from the Rocking Horse Drill Site in Arlington, Texas.  Our City ordinance requires drill zones to be set back 600 feet.   ALL equipment - produced water tanks, separators, compressors, etc. should be included in this measurement, but they are not because when industry helps write the very ordinances which are intended to protect the public, many exemptions and loopholes  get created.  

Look  how close these UNodorized gas gathering pipelines are to this child care facility:

Childcare Network
1400 Caplin Drive, Arlington, Texas 
359 feet from the Rocking Horse Drill Site  

This is why it is so important to remember history:

Rumor has it that gas drilling is not good for business either.  There used to be another day care facility directly across the street from this one.  It closed around six months ago.  That building is vacant now, a common trend around the gas patch.  

We've spoken with lots of parents who say they are fearful of their children being near gas drill sites.  Many fracking chemicals contain  known carcinogens and many are endocrine system disrupters.  Children are more vulnerable than adults to these environmental toxins because they eat, drink, and breathe more than adults on a pound for pound basis. 

We don't think gas drilling  should be anywhere near children.  

Some things are just IMMORAL.  

To read more history about the Rocking Horse Drill Site, click Here.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Hear No Evil, See No Evil, Speak No Evil

We are all familiar with those three chimpanzees that hear no evil, see no evil, and speak no evil.  That's how another gas drilling item got approved last night at the Arlington, Texas Planning and Zoning Public Hearing.
First, the Assistant City Attorney, Mack Reinwand, told us we had to remove the poster board off the table in the back of the room.  It displayed photos of the Monster Frac Pond that Chesapeake placed TEN FEET from homeowners' fence lines at the Corn Valley Gas Drill Site in Grand Prairie, TX.  We do not appreciate the City's attempt to suppress this information from the public during a public hearing.  This is concerning because we have to wonder if his action may have in some way hinted of compromising our first amendment rights.   Those pictures must have been speaking louder than words.

To our dismay, the commissioners approved the zoning change for the Rocking Horse Drill Site 7-0 with 2 abstaining.  Chesapeake wants to establish the drill zone, expand the boundary of the drill site, and add a frac pond.  They should have postponed this vote because Chesapeake appears to have fallen woefully short on following proper procedure and providing important specific details - such as how far the frac pond will be from homes. 

For starters, we wonder if Chesapeake selectively invited neighbors to this town hall meeting that apparently took place on November 26th.  We really wanted an invitation to that party.  Neighborhood groups are also on that list.  Fish Creek happens to be one of them.  We never received notice of that meeting.  In the future, Chesapeake, would you kindly send us the invitation.  We will make sure to spread the word to our community.

It was quite interesting to watch how Cliff Mycoskie skirted around the commissioners' questions.  They performed a wonderful dance.   Mr. Mycoskie has a long history with Planning and Zoning issues.  He previously served as Chairman on the P & Z Commission.  Perhaps that is why he is so good at what he does week after week in our City presenting all those gas drilling items. 

However, we don't think he understands how town hall announcements are handled.  Perhaps we can help with that.  Click Here for the definition of a town hall meeting.   A town hall meeting means that the town is invited - not just a select few.  He talked in circles and looked pretty wiped out by the end of the evening.  In fact, he looked like he took a cat nap during the earlier work session.  This hearing was definitely scheduled too close to the New Years' holiday for everyone.

What we don't understand is why a City would approve such a critical zoning change for a company that has an unfavorable reputation.  There is no transparency, and they are not  providing the City or residents with specific details.   For instance, Mr. Mycoskie was simply pulling a number out of thin air when asked how close in proximity will this frac pond be placed to homes.  He clearly did not know, and because Arlington's gas drilling ordinance does not specify setback requirements for frac ponds, it is  guaranteed that the homeowners on Redwater Drive will get a frac pond VERY close to their fence lines too.  

After the meeting we grabbed a bite to eat at a neighborhood  bar and grill.  The place was bustling with activity and we finally found a small table available in the corner and sat down.  The waitress told us that this room was reserved for the Atheists, but the group welcomed us to stay.  We didn't even have to fill out a visitor's card!  The events of  the evening transitioned quite smoothly as we left one set of individuals who refused to recognize God's ways to those who do not believe in God.  Funny, the group who says there is no God seems to have a better grasp on morality than the people making crucial decisions in our City.  Hmmm...

It was good to meet new people in the community and discuss the suburban gas drilling issue.  It is affirming to know that the majority of people feel the same way we do about the issue.

Time to gear up for the City Council Meeting on Tuesday, January 22, 2013 where our elected officials will vote on whether or not Arlington homeowners will get a frac pond on the other side of their fence line.  Be prepared to speak or forever hold your peace.

For those who haven't been following the history of the Rocking Horse drill site, click:

To watch that January 2nd public hearing and see some classic good ol boy style of government, click Here for that direct link.