01 March, 2012


See the first clip.

UPDATE (3 March):  see Frack nation”, by Phelim McAleer, in The New York Post:
Thanks to the Oscar-nominated documentary “Gasland,” many people believe fracking—a process of getting natural gas out of rock—pollutes water and creates wastelands wherever it is used.
But like so many documentaries nowadays, Gasland is high on anecdote and emotion but low on science and fact.

One of the most dramatic images in “Gasland” is footage of a resident lighting his tap water with flames shooting out of the faucet.
As a journalist, I wanted to learn more, so I went to a Q&A with Gasland director Josh Fox.  As I questioned him, Fox eventually admitted that he knew people could light their tap water in these areas decades before fracking came on the scene.
But he did not include the fact in his documentary because, he said, “It was not relevant.” That was quite an admission, so I quickly threw a recording of the Q&A up on YouTube, and, to my shock, Fox got a Manhattan law firm to write to YouTube threatening it unless the video was removed immediately.

Quicker than I could say “fair use,” Fox and his lawyers pursued my little clip across the Internet, and using threats, shut it down wherever it appeared.  [...]
I decided to make my own documentary, called “FrackNation,” dedicated to telling the kind of stories Josh Fox seems to want to suppress.  But, unlike Josh Fox and “Gasland,” I couldn’t rely on corporate financing from HBO—or wealthy Hollywood actors.
So we decided to use KickStarter, a crowd-funding Web site.  We put our FrackNation pitch up just three weeks ago, and already we have raised more than $140,000 in small donations from ordinary members of the public.
We’ve interviewed farmers in New York and Pennsylvania who are angry.  One elderly farmer cried as he told me how it upset him that urban elites, such as Josh Fox and the actors Marc Ruffallo and Robert Redford, said they didn’t care about their own land.  [...]
Most of all, the farmers know that in some areas there has always been methane in the water—it occurs naturally and not as a result of fracking.  Lighting your tap water has long been a party trick in some of these rural areas.
We want to tell the truth about fracking, but we need the public’s help.  The Hollywood/enviro establishment only wants to tell one (untrue) side of the story.
If you want to help tell the truth about fracking and restore some balance to the documentary world, go to FrackNation.com.  I and the ordinary people of New York and Pennsylvania really need your help.
As I say elsewhere:
It’s simple:  when you
have to lie, then your claims must
be perforce untrue.
DISCLOSURE:  I have donated to the FrackNation fund.

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