There is too much going on for a real post and that is a bit regrettable. Some interesting things have come up including the EPA study on hydraulic fracturing done in Wyoming. this has been the type of study that has been needed, but it's only a start. There are other types of studies and approaches that should be taken. If the industry is smart, it will involve itself in the process and learn how to address all concerns that have been raised. If it wishes to do otherwise, which has been the reaction thus far, then it will fight the study and claim bad science. If you don't have time to read the entire 121-age paper, you should at least know that the meat of the paper is only 42 pages and the rest is citations and data. In fact, the conclusion is only seven pages so have a gander if you're interested.
On to my semi-adopted homeland-for-tax-purposes-that-lead-me-to-claim-residency here! Transparency International recently released their latest survey results. I mentioned this last week, but finally found their actual website with their actual results. I poked around their study methodology a little and it is a bit arbitrary, but it is a Corruptions Perception Index, not a quantitative measure of actual corruption. From the bottom up, Turkmenistan is tied for fifth behind such luminaries as Somalia (which arguably doesn't even have a functioning government), North Korea, Myanmar, and Afghanistan. In recent years, the ranking has consistently moved one direction:
2010 - T5 (same countries as 2011 but add in Iraq and remove North Korea which was not assessed)
2009 - T8 (same as 2010 and add Sudan, Chad, and Uzbekistan)
2008 - T11
2007 - T14
I feel like one could make the argument that things can only get better, but much like the stock market, it is very difficult to call a bottom.