This Fracking Map: Activists Plot More Than 100 Drilling Leases on City-Owned Property

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The densest corner. The map in its entirety is at the end of the post.
This afternoon, Dallas Residents at Risk, a coalition of of anti-fracking activists, will unveiling their map featuring what they say are more than 100 drilling leases on city-owned land totaling some 1,400 acres. The colorful visual shows that the extent of gas drilling leases in Dallas goes well beyond the eight with pending zoning cases, including five on private property and three on city property -- so far the only locations that have been directly addressed by the city's gas drilling task force, which began the process of updating the city's drilling ordinance in June.

The activist group -- which includes representatives from Dallas Area Residents for Responsible Drilling, Dallas Sierra Club, Downwiders at Risk, Earthworks' Oil and Gas Accountability Project, Mountain Creek Neighborhood Alliance and Texas Campaign for the Environment -- will put their map on display in about 30 minutes in the Flag Room at City Hall, shortly before the start of what's scheduled to be the task force's penultimate meeting.

The citizens plotted the map based on information received in response to an open records request filed with the city. "I was surprised," says Ed Meyer, who worked on compiling the data for months. "I had no idea how many there were and where they were located."

The group will also address the five protections they believe are most important, which, if you'll recall, are:

1) Minimum 3,000 foot setback to protect Dallas homeowners and residents where they live, work, worship and play.
2) Full disclose of all chemicals used for Dallas's first responders, no "trade secrets" that could endanger police, fire and medical professionals.
3) Disallow exporting water for drilling operations outside Dallas, and charge gas companies more for the hundreds of millions of gallons of water they permanently contaminate.
4) Require companies to off-set their climate change gas emissions so drilling will not cripple the Dallas Climate Protection Plan.
5) Establish an industry-funded office of gas drilling oversight to respond to any drilling problems that might arise.
Task force member Cherelle Blazer tells Unfair Park this afternoon the map shows that despite assertions that drilling would only affect locations in the far western portion of the city, drilling can potentially affect a far wider swath of the city -- and the city's updated ordinance will, in turn, affect dozens of current leases. "Definitely whatever recommendations we come up with will affect those leases," she says. "The set-back might make it so that you can't drill at each individual lease point."

It could also mean a windfall of lawsuits against the city for leasing land for the purpose of fracking, then tightening rules to prohibit the practice.

Unfair Park called David Cossum, assistant director of Sustainable Development and Construction, for further information on how much skin the city has in the drilling game; we'll update accordingly.

"[Drilling] could be a very big production in Dallas," Blazer says. And the map of leases on city-owned land, "that's only the tip of the iceberg," she says. That doesn't account for the private leases, which are more difficult to track.

Blazer will also speak at the press conference before today's task force meeting. "I really feel like the residents should have more of a say as to what's going on. I feel for some of them who know there's going to be a site right next to their neighborhood. They shouldn't be shut out of the process," she says.

After the press conference, the task force will address a list of about 20 items that they've individually decided they would like to revisit. Expect set-back distances to fill most of the afternoon.Gas Leases in Dallas


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21 comments
Sidewalkastronomer
Sidewalkastronomer

Oh goody, soon we will have our own frack induced earthquakes. 

Guesto
Guesto

""that's only the tip of the iceberg... That doesn't account for the private leases, which are more difficult to track."

You can see those gas drill sites all over South Fort Worth in google maps.  Map "Huguley Memorial Medical Center" and zoom out to about 500-1000 ft on the distance meter and see three of them next to the hospital.  The chalky white squares with long roads leading to them are very distinguishable and you can see shitload of them littering the landscape.  If you zoom on the white squares and it has a row of cylindrical tanks with some pipework around it, then that's a sure sign of a gas drilling site.  Some of them are parked right up to residential areas.  That's some real careless greed at work there.

Juan Valdez
Juan Valdez

Where do I collect my royalties? Since I live close to one of those dots.

Darrd2010
Darrd2010

 You get nothing, It's not about you as it's about the city. And they most likely are to gain 0 as well.

claytonauger
claytonauger

What this map doesn't tell you is that each dot could hold more than one gas drilling well pad. Each pad can have up to 24 wells on it. So every one of these dots is potentially the site of multiple wells. It also doesn't show you where the giant compressors ( that emit thousands of tons of emissions a year) will be going, or the pipelines that will be criss-crossing the city beween sites, or the batteries of tanks that will be needed as well. Wake up  Dallas, you're about to get fracked.

Max from the Sandspit
Max from the Sandspit

Nice that the Rockefeller Brothers are gettin' some bang for the 100 million they've poored into this whitch hunt. Just wonder how much Media Matters is paying this rag to run this crap.

Edgar
Edgar

I love it when activists get all giddy about their visuals.  Like Crawford's "Scroll of Doom" or whatever he called it, signed by tens, or possibly fifteens, of people opposed to drilling, each of whom signed their names in 3-inch block letters with a big fat marker.  They're so proud of those visuals that they just can't help but show them off, like a 5 year old who drew a picture of a fire twuck.

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

I'm not an activist but I, too, love visuals. This map, for example. First glance I realized the drillers have targeted property two blocks from my house. Right next to a school. First time anyone in the neighborhood knew a thing. Keep those visuals coming.  

claytonauger
claytonauger

Actually, it' a product of research that neither the city nor industry was willing to do, despite the fact that it shows the potential for a lot more of Dallas to be affected by fracking than most believe now - 130 vs. 5.  It's not the map itself that's important, it's the information it represents, and the fact citizens had to do it themselves. 

Edgar
Edgar

Why would it be the city's or industry's job to make a map for you?  Lease it to you guys to complain that others haven't done your homework for you.

WCGasette
WCGasette

Sorry, but for something this important, and for something being presented in public, it's better to talk directly and/or confirm it with the city staff as well.  ROAM should be a resource...not the "only" source for this kind of research.  Hope that helps.

Edgar
Edgar

If they open up a pig farm behind my house, I'll stop by to introduce myself to your wife.

Edgar
Edgar

I guess you're very entitled, just not very resourceful.  You can get the legal descriptions for free from the web.  Go to the Dallas County Clerk's website and use the ROAM system.  Want me to give you a link or can you find that yourself?

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

Of course you're right, Edgar.  I wonder, by the way, if in your "homework" you've discovered the plans for the pig farm they're putting up right behind your house? You knew about it, of course?    

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

Edgar,If you have no idea the drillers have aimed at your neighborhood, then of course you wouldn't know to go looking for a map, much less where to find one. That way they can slip in pretty much unannounced.But tell us, Edgar, when are they planning to dill near your house? I'm sure you've done your homework.

Darrd2010
Darrd2010

 Yeah, they are public record, but you have to pay $20 and go pick it up down on Jefferson.Most folks don't know that nor have the time to do it. That's how most under the table business is conducted at City Hall.  No one would know what is none today if it were not up to our few involved citizens who continue to 'shine the light' on what is known.

There is more information out there that has not been revealed. There's an additional 1200 acres that were leased in Central and Northwest Dallas back in August of 2011 but still not revealed.Maybe you could lend a hand and help us uncover it.

Edgar
Edgar

The leases are public record...that's the definition of transparency.  It's not the city's job to map the property descriptions for you according to your specifications.

Darrd2010
Darrd2010

 Obviously, you don't think that it's incumbent on the city to divulge where they have decided to lease land (upwards of 2800 acres)to the gas industry. We tend to think that it is the city's responsibility to be open and transparent about how they transact money on our behalf along with the consequences it brings.

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