Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality http://wyomingpublicmedia.org en Underground Coal Gasification: A Potential Energy Frontier? http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/underground-coal-gasification-potential-energy-frontier <p>Millions of railcars leave the Powder River Basin every year, carrying hundreds of millions of tons of coal. Those are big numbers, but the coal we mine is just a small fraction of what’s underground. Most of the basin’s coal reserves are buried too deep for conventional mining.<br /><br />An Australian company called Linc Energy wants to use a technology known as underground coal gasification to tap those deep coal reserves and turn them into fuel. But as Wyoming Public Radio’s Stephanie Joyce reports, that might come at the peril of another valuable resource: water.<br /> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 21:14:16 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 57403 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Underground Coal Gasification: A Potential Energy Frontier? State Looks Into Allegations Of Environmental Harm By Linc Energy http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/state-looks-allegations-environmental-harm-linc-energy <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: normal;">The state has requested information from Australian regulators about&nbsp;</span><a href="http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/linc-energy-charged-causing-environmental-harm-australia" style="font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: normal; color: rgb(17, 85, 204);" target="_blank">alleged environmental crimes</a><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: normal;">&nbsp;by </span>Linc<span style="color: rgb(34, Thu, 24 Apr 2014 17:50:28 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 57318 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org State Looks Into Allegations Of Environmental Harm By Linc Energy Linc Energy Charged With Causing Environmental Harm In Australia http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/linc-energy-charged-causing-environmental-harm-australia <p>A company proposing to open an underground coal gasification demonstration site in Wright has been charged with environmental violations in Australia. &nbsp;The charges could cost the company over two million dollars per violation.</p><p>Underground coal gasification involves igniting coal seams deep underground to produce syngas, which can then be processed into various liquid fuels or other chemicals. &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>What exactly the environmental harm is has not yet been revealed.</p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 23:37:32 +0000 Irina Zhorov 56828 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Linc Energy Charged With Causing Environmental Harm In Australia Pinedale Air Improves As State Toughens Industry Regs http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/pinedale-air-improves-state-toughens-industry-regs <p></p><p></p> Fri, 11 Apr 2014 22:10:36 +0000 Willow Belden 56713 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Pinedale Air Improves As State Toughens Industry Regs Orphaned Well Meeting Draws Crowd http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/orphaned-well-meeting-draws-crowd <p></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">The state held its first-ever public meeting about the issue of orphaned and idle gas wells Wednesday in Gillette.&nbsp;</span></p> Thu, 03 Apr 2014 23:58:13 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 56318 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Orphaned Well Meeting Draws Crowd Wyoming Doesn’t Often Fine Industry For Spills http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/wyoming-doesn-t-often-fine-industry-spills <p>Wyoming regulators recorded hundreds of spills by the oil and gas industry last year, but issued just a handful of fines. As Wyoming Public Radio’s Stephanie Joyce reports, that’s actually not unusual.<br /><br />STEPHANIE JOYCE: ‘Genie McMullan knows when there’s been an oil spill from the production wells on her goat farm in the Big Horn Basin.<br /><br />'GENIE McMULLAN: When there’s a spill there’s a sharp smell, it’s a burning smell to my senses, my nose, my eyes, my lungs.<br /> Sat, 18 Jan 2014 00:02:23 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 52771 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Wyoming Doesn’t Often Fine Industry For Spills Pollution spikes in Converse County spark concerns over oil and gas expansion http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/pollution-spikes-converse-county-spark-concerns-over-oil-and-gas-expansion <p>Converse County is seeing an increasing amount of energy development, and some residents worry that air quality could suffer as a result. The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality and researchers from the University of Wyoming are now monitoring air quality in the area.</p><p>On the whole, they’ve found that the air is pretty clean. But they’ve also documented times when pollution levels have spiked. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.</p> Fri, 15 Nov 2013 22:36:08 +0000 Willow Belden 49990 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Pollution spikes in Converse County spark concerns over oil and gas expansion Converse County wrestles with development planning http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/converse-county-wrestles-development-planning <p>Converse County is one of six counties in Wyoming with no land use regulations. When a proposal to develop zoning came up a decade ago, it went nowhere. But as development associated with the oil and gas boom in the Niobrara explodes, the county is struggling with questions of how to make sure it happens responsibly. And as Wyoming Public Radio’s Stephanie Joyce reports, some residents are starting to question the costs of not planning.<br /> Fri, 08 Nov 2013 23:01:50 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 49642 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Converse County wrestles with development planning Gov. Mead speaks about state takeover of the Pavillion water study and potential investments http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/gov-mead-speaks-about-state-takeover-pavillion-water-study-and-potential-investments <p>Governor Matt Mead says he trusts the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality to deliver trustworthy results when it takes over the Pavillion water contamination study from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. A draft of the study initiated by the EPA was released in 2011 and tentatively linked groundwater contamination with fracking, something industry expressed skepticism about.</p><p></p><p></p><p>Mead says he’s not sure yet whether the state study will be peer reviewed once it’s completed.</p><p></p> Mon, 22 Jul 2013 22:54:10 +0000 Irina Zhorov 44157 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Gov. Mead speaks about state takeover of the Pavillion water study and potential investments Rail transport opens new markets for oil, but draws criticism from some local communities http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/rail-transport-opens-new-markets-oil-draws-criticism-some-local-communities <p>A facility is slated to be built in the town of Fort Laramie that would load oil onto rail cars. Assuming the project gets the necessary permits from the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality, it’s expected to be completed by the end of the year. Transporting oil by train is becoming increasingly popular, and experts say this facility and others like it will help the energy industry thrive. But local residents fear that a new industrial site could bring problems to their community. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.</p> Fri, 12 Jul 2013 21:00:33 +0000 Willow Belden 43644 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Rail transport opens new markets for oil, but draws criticism from some local communities DEQ’s engine emissions study shows mixed compliance in oil and gas fields http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/deq-s-engine-emissions-study-shows-mixed-compliance-oil-and-gas-fields <p>The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality has been running an Engine Emissions Study for almost two years now. For the most part, Wyoming oil and gas fields are not connected to the grid and so they end up running on engines, which emit pollutants into the air. The study set out to evaluate emissions from these generators around the state. Results from the study show that a large percentage of the engines fail the tests. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov spoke with the DEQ Air Quality Engineer in charge of the study, Jon Walker, about why that is.</p> Fri, 19 Apr 2013 21:50:18 +0000 Irina Zhorov 39575 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org DEQ’s engine emissions study shows mixed compliance in oil and gas fields Surface discharge of water used in oil recovery common throughout Wyoming http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/surface-discharge-water-used-oil-recovery-common-throughout-wyoming <p>The EPA issues water discharge permits on the Wind River Indian Reservation to oil and gas companies bringing up water with their oil.&nbsp;</p><p>That water, called produced water, is dirty and often warm even in winter. The permits are issued through an EPA waiver that allows such water to be discharged in the arid West if it’s being used beneficially.&nbsp; In the drier parts of Wyoming it is sometimes the only source of water for livestock and wildlife.</p> Wed, 21 Nov 2012 16:11:47 +0000 Irina Zhorov 33120 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Surface discharge of water used in oil recovery common throughout Wyoming New DEQ director shares his plans for Wyoming http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/new-deq-director-shares-his-plans-wyoming <p>The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality has a new director, Todd Parfitt, the agency’s former deputy director. He took over after former director John Corra retired. Parfitt has spent about 20 years with DEQ, and he has also worked for an environmental consulting company in Ohio. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden spoke with Parfitt about his plans for tackling some of the environmental issues facing the state.</p> Fri, 16 Nov 2012 23:32:02 +0000 Willow Belden 32932 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org New DEQ director shares his plans for Wyoming