Way back in 1971, when there was still a Soviet Union, in the Soviet Republic of Turkmenistan, the Soviets were drilling for natural gas when the drilling zone collapsed and natural gas started to spew forth. Not wanting those vapors in the air, the Soviets set it on fire. It has been burning ever since, like a window into a mythical hell. I don't know why a way has not been found to harness this wasted energy.
Meanwhile, here in Texas, holes continue to be punched through the earth to reach Barnett Shale so that some water process, called fracturing, can release the natural gas.
This pleases many here in Texas. And greatly upsets others. Mostly those who have had their lives made miserable by having drillers suddenly show up on their property.
Last week Fort Worth Weekly had a sad story about a couple in the Fort Worth suburb of Azle who'd moved here from California to their dream ranch in a formerly bucolic setting. The distance from a residence rules that exist in Fort Worth don't exist in Azle. So, Devon Energy put up a drilling site 213 feet from Mike and Annette Daniel's house.
The drillers cut down a line of trees that gave the Daniel's privacy in their backyard and pool. And then the noise and light show began. And the dust. I've been through this myself. From over a 1000 foot distance. After a few months the worst was over.
You can read the entire story, "Paradise Lost" in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's nemesis known as FW Weekly.
Go to my Texas website for more about the Barnett Shale or what I call Fort Worth Flatulence.
And below you can watch a video of the ongoing glimpse into Hell in Turkmenistan.