Frac Central Alberta: Fox Creek Wall of Wildfire. How many hundreds of thousands of fracs are leaking methane, ethane, propane, butane, pentane, sour gas to surface fuelling wildfires? Do leaking facilities, wells, pipelines start and fuel fires? Who’s checking? AER? Encana/Ovintiv? Chevron? No one.

Photo by Kyle Brittain: Wall of Wildfire, Fox Creek Alberta

May 14, 2023 Mother’s day: Gaia weeps.

John Vaillant@JohnVaillant:

’cause all the [smoke] was being inhaled by the fire . . . ?

Kyle Brittain@KyleBrittainWX:

Yes sir!

Brad In YYC @Brad_In_YYC:

Sounds like it was suckling so much air from behind you and shooting it up, the smoke smell included. That’s crazy. That’s a bloody massive fire.

Michael Hallman@MichaelHallman4:

That is a terrifying fire.


Fox Creek is my hometown. As scary as it is I appreciate having a glimpse of what is going on there while evacuated. Thank you for this photo.

robert t monner@monner92:

I hope they find whoever started these fires and give them life in prison

May 6, 2023: Fox Creek Fire

Snaps above and close ups below from FIRMS, Fire Information for Resource Management;d:2023-05-06;@-116.7,54.5,10z

FIRMS map shows energy wells, pipelines, lease roads etc.

Town of Fox Creek Fire Updates by Town of Fox Creek

May 19, 2023 Update includes fabulous clips of comments of support from many!

Gratitude Messages

May 18, 2023:Watch the campground clip! It’s beyond weird how the fire took out a bridge, but not much else. Rivers on fire in frac fields is nothing new.

8:20am- The Town is Intact.

The fire remains at containment lines near the Trout Pond Road on NW side of town and it is at 4km on the North Road.

It has moved closer to town from all directions.

Although the fire travelled through, our early assessment is that Iosegun Campground is holding its ground.

As of yesterday afternoon we did lose a bridge and the horizon line, we’d all recognize anywhere, has changed.

Crews continue to work on knocking the fire down and holding the fireline to minimize spread.
Evacuation Reception Centre changes location today. You’ll find the same support and familiar faces there.

St Joesph’s Parish Hall
5538 Mink Creek Road
The phone and email support resources are still available: email hidden; JavaScript is required

May 17, 2023:

9:30pm-The RCMP went door to door for a final evacuation check, tonight. …

We are expecting north winds today that will continue to push the fire towards the community, exact distances and fire locations are difficult to monitor because of the smoke in the area, crews on the ground and in the air will be monitoring them as best as possible, the fire still poses a threat to the community.

Fire operations will proceed as they did yesterday, with fire fighters working to extinguish hot-spots using crews on the ground and support from the air.

The Fire has crossed diagonally through the Iosegun Lake Campground and crews are working on constructing a road to gain access to the location to continue to knock down the fire. The damage done to the campground has not been assessed.

The fire is up against our first control lines (dozer guards) that are currently holding.

The crews are out at the lines working hard to knock it down to hold it where it is, Horizon North Camp is still intact.

We continue to receive support from the Province via military and additional crews to help us do so.

Evacuees are encouraged to reach out to our support line at 780-202-4938 or email email hidden; JavaScript is required. Continued support will be offered through both channels.


Industrial frac experiments began in earnest around 1998 with increasingly monstrous shale fracs taking off around 2009 (National Energy Board, now CER, put out their warning report on shale frac’ing that year). Read more about frac’ing in Andrew Nikiforuk’s Slick Water.

Methane, ethane, propane, butane, H2S are flammable gases released from tight formations by hydraulic fracturing that were previously not naturally released.

Slides above and below by Dr. Karlis Muehlenbachs, U of A

Encana/Ovintiv told my community it took the company two years of endless failed frac experiments with their huge crews and machines trying to figure out how to force the tight gases to let go.


From Page 13, City of Calgary Report (does not mention frac’ing)

Why ignore industry forcing mass leakage of flammable gases across the province, country, globally (except where citizens were smart enough to keep it out)?

The Leaks that threaten the clean image of natural gas

After decades of lies to landowners and the public by CAPP, industry & energy regulators, University of Guelph Study Proves Potentially Explosive Methane Leaks from Energy Wells Affects Groundwater, Travels Great Distances, Poses Safety Risks. Will the lies stop now? Not Likely. Will groundwater monitoring begin now? Not Likely.

Above is still leaking, nearly 60 years later. Will industry’s leaks ever be fixed? No, that costs money which companies refuse to spend on cleaning up their pollution. Frac-captured politicians and regulators refuse to compel companies to fix their leaks, with courts mostly useless other than helping companies evade clean up via bankruptcies and ordering settle ‘n gag to keep things nicely secret and covered-up so that companies can change names and drill and frac and leak again and again, “down the street.”

If an increase in water wells causes increasing gas leaks, what does an increase in massive fracs on energy wells do? All fracs cause gas migration and industry still does not know how to control their fracs (or their leaks).

The above map shows hundreds of shallow frac’d (red dots) gas wells and deeper gas wells (black dots) most by Encana/Ovintiv (escaping clean up via dumped onto Lynx) in one small part of intensely frac’d Alberta. How many are leaking gases to surface? How many fracs and refracs leak gases to surface via soil or via groundwater discharging into surface water bodies like the Rosebud River. How many facilitieswells, pipelines in map above are leaking gases?

Rosebud’s cement water reservoir, after Encana illegally frac’d the community’s drinking water aquifers, accumulated so much leaking gases, it ignited, blew up and was destroyed, sending the water manager to hospital, seriously injured.

Fox Creek is as intensely frac’d as Rosebud, if not more so.

Methane, ethane, H2S leaking at an airport, Rome, Italy

Above two photos: Encana’s frac massively leaking gases methane, ethane, H2S, etc. Imagine what’s leaking underground to surface, unseen.

Industry’s brand new shale gas well, leaking.

Inspectors found leaks at shale wells, government report says

Leaks found in shale gas wells: Que. Report, 31 were inspected ‘and more than half have problems,’ says envrionmental expert

How many of industry’s gas leaks start, fuel and refuel wildfires?

How many song bird, owl, raptor, etc. nests and young destroyed in fires started by frac-induced leaks?

Energy wells with known gas leaks, as of 2014!

How many leaking now, ten years later? How many of these leakers start and or fuel wildfires?

Gas leakage in energy wells in Alberta is a significant problem that companies refuse to fix Why? Greed, and AER, industry’s self regulator, looks the other way.

Industry’s relentless gas leakage will be with us, for centuries, causing how many wildfires, lives lost, how much cancer via smoke and frac chemical pollution, how much wildlife lost, livestock, pets burned up?

How many communities destroyed, like Fort McMurray, Fox Lake?

Will the Town of Fox Creek survive?

My well water after Encana/Ovintive illegally frac’d the drinking water aquifers that supply my well and others in my community. Twenty years later, I remain without safe water.

How many $trillions in costs to ordinary Albertans, that industry will never reimburse? No wonder they supply a few doughnuts, library donations and hockey games here and there. Cheap polluting murderers.

A home explosion in Firestone Monday, April 17, 2017 killed two and sent two people to the hospital. Dennis Herrera/ Special to The Denver Post

Industry’s leaking sour gases apparently caused the explosion but no company will be held responsible. Heavens to Betsy, can’t hold a polluting oil and gas company responsible! Instead, they tried blaming a slab rising in the basement of a pub.

Above flaming photos: The Fairfax Dress for Less explosion in LA was caused by industry’s leaking gases but they tried to blame bacteria and a rising water table.

Above image from 2014 PNAS study: 100 to 1000 times more methane leakage during drilling than EPA estimates. It’s a massive global problem.

An Alberta study: The percentage of leaking energy wells ranged from 12 to 80%!

Industry refuses to fix it. Not just because it’s expensive, also because they don’t know how to yet keep drilling, frac’ing and leaking, refracing and leaking more. Much worse, our frac polluted politicians allow it, putting all life at risk.

2014 North Dakota frac’s from above ground view.

Imagine what Fox Creek fracs look like.

Visualize the gases leaking from above fracs

Home explosion caused by industry’s frac’d gases leaking into it.

2004 Manitoba industry’s problem leakers. Then there’s also small leakers, not mapped.

It was later proven industry’s leaking gases travelled nearly 7 miles, causing explosions and fires, killing two people in their home

Fire hazard in Encana’s frac fields at Rosebud.

Imagine the hazards in Canada’s frac’d and refrac’d forests, over heated and dry from humanity’s greed-induced, massive over population, climate extremes and global warming.

Images above and below: Industry’s leaking gases via pipelines, Boston, USA.

Canada’s gas lines also leak, in communities including cities, across prairies and muskeg, under and into lakes and rivers, and in forests.

Industry’s gas leaks are rampant, everywhere.

As if the above isn’t bad enough, think of the cumulative increases in leaking flammable gases caused by industry’s frequent frac-induced earthquakes!

Slides above from Ernst presentations

2022: Fox Creek, Alberta: TC Energy P/L leak, ignition and fire.

Little Orphan Wells on the Prairies *and* in BC *and* in Quebec *and* in the Maritimes *and* souring and blowing up towns in Ontario … And intentional and accidental fracs, spills and leaks (including fake pollution solution Carbon Capture & Storage) leaking gases and toxic chemicals into groundwater …

New study: Canada overlooking (intentionally?) industry’s methane leaks.

Yet another new study: USA Permian Frac Basin leaking massive amounts of methane, “the largest source ever observed in an oil and gas field,” more than double federal estimates. How many decades will the frac fraud go on for and why do NGOs and synergy groups keep enabling the fraud?

Satellites show major new methane leaks: Oil and gas industry responsible for far more methane in atmosphere than previously thought; Undetected methane leaks from energy industry are major global issue

Climate Courts: Let trials proceed without gov’ts if politicians care so little about rights of youth and fail to show up or are too ashamed about giving the rich and corporate polluters everything and nothing to our kids and their future.

Dr. Sandra Steingraber on IPCC AR6 Climate Report: “The science is clear: the fossil fuel industry needs to disappear from the face of the earth as soon as possible. … Promoting any expensive false solutions LIKE CARBON CAPTURE AND STORAGE is treachery.

New study: Frac’ing in U.S. & Canada linked to worldwide atmospheric methane spike. “This recent increase in methane is massive,” Howarth said. “It’s globally significant.”

Scrubbadubbadub! Two earthquakes west of Alberta’s Fox Creek Frac Hub: 4.0M on Dec 25; 4.1M on Dec 30. Like a coronavirus, it spreads. Earthquakes Canada already scrubbed the 4.1M; nothing reported in the media or by AER, again

What the Frac Hell is going on in Canada! 3.9M earthquake west of Frac’d Crazy Fox Creek Alberta reported by Earthquakes Canada, 1 km depth, now scrubbed from their website! I bet our lame authorities and frac’ers wish they could hide the fires.

“Insane” Greed: Fox Creek Shakes as Frackers Drill for Condensate to Dilute Bitumen

Fox Creek, Alberta Frac Quakes start up again; New Study by Standford Scientists: Small earthquakes at frac sites may be early indicators of bigger quakes to come

Fox Creek Mayor Jim Ahn rightfully worried about frac quakes harming sour gas infrastructure in the community. How much damage have the quakes already caused sour gas wellbores and pipelines?

Chevron reported 3.6 magnitude event; Shut down by AER. Is the AER’s Frac Quake Stop Light System Irrelevant? Another 4.4 Magnitude Earthquake at Fox Creek

AER allows Repsol to resume fracking after causing world record 4.8M frac quake (felt 280 km away near Edmonton) in AER’s Fox Creek Blanket Approval Frac Frenzy Free-for-All Experiment. But, Repsol appears too shaken to resume

Why isn’t AER’s Fox Creek Frac Frenzy Regulatory Failure front page news? AER releases evaluation of its Play-Based (Blanket Approval) DeRegulation Pilot

The insanely polluting leaking oil & gas industry! New paper on methane leak detection & repair: More than 1,600 leaks & vents at only 36 sites in NW Alberta. Think of the cumulative pollution, community poisoning and public health harms, notably as more and more companies, enabled by politicians (industry’s maids), regulators and courts, use bankruptcy to avoid clean up.

Ontario 2 years ago: In Norfolk, leaking abandoned industry *sour* gas wells forces exclusion zone for vehicles, vessels, and evacuation of 22 homes. In nearby Town of Jarvis (population 2,300), unusually high methane readings, firefighters test gas levels at every home. Compare to grossly negligent, “No Duty of Care,” Charter-violating, lying, spying, heinous AER covering-up industry’s deadly gas leaks.

New Study: Airborne radioactivity increases downwind of frac’ing; Particles released could damage health of residents nearby. Marco Kaltofen: “This investigation backs up its big conclusions with big data.” Petros Koutrakis, Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in Boston, led the study: “If you asked me to go and live downwind [of fracking sites], I would not go.”

Shale Gas Plagued By Unusual Methane Leaks, Scientists investigate high levels of damaging gas released in fracked areas

High US methane emissions blamed on leaks; Harvard fracking study show industry methane leaks far higher than official estimates, rings methane alarm bells in Australia

2013: Methane Leaks from Fracking are Much Worse than We Thought And nothing but cover-up and more lies was done about it.

Uinta Basin gas leakage far worse than most believe, New study says up to 12% of basin’s methane leaks; EPA estimated on average nationally that 0.8 to 1.6% of natural gas leaks

Methane leaks erode green credentials of natural gas, Losses of up to 9% show need for broader data on US gas industry’s environmental impact

Doctors raise alarm over toxic coal seam gas leaks, Gas Industry Attacks Scientists After Research Finds Triple The Normal Levels Of Methane At Australian Gas Fields Think of the horrific wildfires there.

Independent study finds significant fault line methane leaks near PA natural gas operations

2012: Is natural gas truly a clean source of energy? Industry is booming, but ‘fracking’ and leaks soil its image

The Gas Is Always Greener When It Leaks Less

Alberta declares state of emergency due to fires, more than 24,000 out of homes by The Canadian Press, May 6, 2023, Toronto Star

CALGARY – Alberta declared a state of emergency Saturday due to the growing threat of wildfires that have forced more than 24,000 people from their homes.

Premier Danielle Smith said the safety of Albertans is a priority, and the emergency status gives the government greater power to access emergency funds and mobilize additional support.

“This is not a step that we took lightly,” Smith told a news conference following a meeting of her emergency management cabinet committee. “But it’s one that will allow the quickest and most effective response.”

More than a dozen communities and rural areas have been evacuated in recent days. Officials said there were 110 wildfires burning in the province, with about three dozen considered out of control, as of late Saturday afternoon.

Some buildings have been destroyed, including 20 homes, a police station and a store in Fox Lake in northern Alberta.

The Municipality of Jasper in Jasper National Park also warned that wildfires burning in Yellowhead County could cause a power failure in the town.

Smith said provincial money will be available to help those affected and that Ottawa is ready to help. She said Alberta Public Safety Minister Mike Ellis had spoken with federal Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair and Ottawa is on standby to provide assistance if the province requests it.

“I’m hoping to be able to schedule a call with the prime minister in the next day or so and I’m building a list of things that we’ll be able to ask for. I’ll take them seriously when they say that they’re prepared to give help,” Smith said, while also praising the City of Edmonton for providing an evacuation centre on short notice.

Smith said the province could ask the prime minister for firefighting expertise from national parks, as well as military help. Ottawa would also have to help with the emergency response for First Nations, she said.

Temperatures remained high, humidity stayed low and forecasts continued to call for gusting winds.

But there was a ray of hope.

“We are looking forward to a brief reprieve, possibly in the next few days, as cooler weather comes up through the province, that may give firefighters a chance to catch their breath,” said Christie Tucker, an information unit manager with Alberta Wildfire.

Tucker added that Alberta had welcomed additional firefighters Saturday from Ontario and Quebec.

NDP Leader Rachel Notley said she had extended an offer to the United Conservative Party government to take part in meetings about the wildfire response.

Alberta is currently in the middle of an election campaign, with the vote scheduled for May 29.

“I’m willing to provide any insights from past experiences that might be helpful in this situation,” Notley said.

Notley was premier during the May 2016 wildfires that forced tens of thousands of people from Fort McMurray, Alta., and levelled many parts of the city.

“It’s very rare that you have a former premier running in a campaign. It’s even more rare that that former premier has experience with this kind of public emergency,” said Notley.

“There is an opportunity for us to depoliticize this and to work together on doing everything we can to focus on public safety, ensure the resources are corralled appropriately to the people who need it and make sure it’s not an election issue. And one way to do that is to bring people together.”

Smith said the government is ensuring the leader of the Opposition receives information as the fire situation continues to unfold. She said she’ll be meeting with Notley in the coming days and looks “forward to getting her advice on how she would like to be able to feed into our process.”

The premier also said she had spoken with Elections Alberta for advice and, if it’s required by the end of the month, accommodations for voting could be made for affected areas.

“As of now, people should be anticipating that election day will go ahead as planned on May 29,” Smith said.

Notley said it’s too soon to say whether the election should be delayed. NDP candidates in six constituencies affected by evacuation orders suspended their campaigns Saturday.

Smith said two UCP candidates had also stepped away from campaigning.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 6, 2023.

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