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9th Court Enables Ruby Pipeline Construction

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals denied the emergency request by Center for Biological Diversity to temporarily halt construction on the 670 mile Ruby Pipeline being constructed by El Paso corporation through four western states. Some of the Ruby Pipeline's future customers include BP, in a rush to regain their losses from the Gulf Oil Spill. This could be some of the reasons for skipping critical components of the public review process and purchasing verbal consent from two prominent environmental organizations, WWP and ONDA.
Here's the latest from the 9th CC regarding the Ruby Pipeline;

from NPR;

Posted: Wednesday, September 1, 2010

"The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has denied a request to halt construction of a 670 mile natural gas pipeline being built between Malin Oregon and Opal Wyoming. As Oregon Public Broadcasting's David Nogueras reports, construction of the Ruby Pipeline will continue, but the project still faces other challenges.

The Center for Biological Diversity filed the motion to stop construction while the court considers a lawsuit it filed just weeks earlier. The group argued letting the project go forward could result in irreparable harm to certain endangered fish species. But in a concise ruling, the court denied that request.

Noah Greenwald is the endangered species program director with the Center for Biological Diversity.

Noah Greenwald: "The case still moves forward and we're still go into briefing and arguing the merits of our case in front of the 9th Circuit, just not with an injunction in place."

Greenwald says the suit challenges rights of way granted on federal lands as well as a federal review of the project's effect on endangered species.

A spokesman for the El Paso Corporation says the permitting process adequately protects wildlife and adds that the lawsuit is "without merit".

Copyright 2010 OPB

article here;

from Associated Press

Updated Sep 2, 2010 02:54PM

ELKO, Nev.

"A federal appeals court has denied an environmental group's request for an emergency injunction to block construction of a gas pipeline across four Western states.

The Center for Biological Diversity filed the motion Aug. 18 with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco to halt construction of the Ruby Pipeline.

The same group filed suit July 30, saying the pipeline will cross more than 1,000 rivers and streams and harm a number of endangered fish species.

El Paso Corp.'s pipeline will export gas from Opal in western Wyoming, crossing northern Utah and northern Nevada, before ending at Malin, Ore.

Noah Greenwald of the Center for Biological Diversity says the court didn't address the merits of the case in its Tuesday order."

article here;
 link to www.sltrib.com

What is the next step for protecting the endangered sage grouse habitat from intrusive pipelines most likely to rupture at some uncertain time in the future from either seismic events or other accidental mishaps along a 670 mile corridor?

We could begin with the source of the problem, hydraulic fracturing (aka "fracking") process used to obtain natural gas from below ground in Southwestern Wyoming where the pipeline originates.

background on fracking;



additional fracking news;

EPA Officials Find Petrol Hydrocarbons in WYo Wells.

Following Hydraulic Fracking in Nearby Shale

More evidence continues to accumulate indicating that hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is having severe detrimental effects on the regions groundwater;

Here's the latest from Frac Tracker website;

"(Reuters) - U.S. government officials urged residents of a Wyoming farming community near natural gas drilling sites not to use private well water for drinking or cooking because of chemical contamination.

"Sample results indicate that the presence of petroleum hydrocarbons and other chemical compounds in groundwater represents a drinking water concern," the Environmental Protection Agency said in a statement about tests of 19 water wells around the town of Pavillion.

The Wyoming investigation precedes a national study by the EPA into the safety of the drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing or "fracking", in response to concern in Congress and in some communities near gas rigs in many states that human health is threatened by the process.

The tests in Pavillion found that 17 of the 19 wells tested contained petroleum hydrocarbons as well as napthalene, phenols and benzene, the Environmental Protection Agency said in a report issued late on Tuesday.

The tests are part of the agency's first investigation into claims that toxic chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing are contaminating ground water.

But officials expressed no views about the source of the contamination.

"EPA has not reached any conclusions about how constituents of concern are occurring in domestic wells," the report said.

Concerns about the safety of fracking threaten to slow the development of vast shale gas reserves that may be sufficient to meet U.S. natural gas demand for a century or more, experts believe.

The EPA's latest results were analyzed by federal toxicologists who recommended that Pavillion residents find alternative sources of water for drinking and cooking.

For residents whose wells contain organic hydrocarbons, the new water supplies will be paid for by EnCana, the Canadian energy company that owns Pavillion's approximately 250 gas wells, said Richard Mylott, an EPA spokesman.

Some wells were found contain to methane, and their owners were advised to ensure proper ventilation while showering.

The new samples were collected in January and follow a less-detailed round of testing in March 2009 during which 11 of 39 wells were found to contain "contaminants of concern."

The latest tests revisited 19 of the 39 initial wells as well as four irrigation wells, two municipal wells, and some surface water.

The samples were analyzed for more than 300 substances by four laboratories, the EPA.

In coming months, scientists will continue testing, and will focus on possible sources of the contamination, Mylott said."

above article link here;