And The Anti-Fracking Award Goes To…

The 2013 Environmental Media Awards were a fracking good time last Saturday. The green award show, which recognizes the best films or television episodes with an environmental message, honored fracking drama “Promised Land” in the feature film category and recognized ABC’s Last Man Standing for their episode “Mother Fracker.” In the documentary category, HBO film “Gasland 2″—which warns of the environmental impact of the new F word—took home top honors.

Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, is the process of drilling in to the ground in order to fracture shale rocks to release natural gas. Natural gas is a natural resource used for heating, cooking, electricity generation, and fuel, but the environmental impacts of induced fracking have become a contentious issue. According to DangersOfFracking.com, it takes one to eight million gallons of water to complete a single fracking job. Matt Damon, who has long been an activist for water conservation and sanitation, is a major opponent of fracking, and was at the EMA to receive the Ongoing Commitment Award.

Damon told the Hollywood Reporter that the “[EMA] has a really far reach and a loud voice and so much can be mitigated by changing our behavior. To get people conscious and start thinking of resource scarcity and things like that is a pretty big step.”

Other environmentally concerned celebrities like Julie Bowen, Hayden Panettiere, Malin Akerman, and James Van Der Beek were on hand.

To frack, a mixture of water, sand, and hundreds of chemicals is shot 10,000 feet into the earth, possibly contaminating nearby groundwater. Chemicals like methanol, lead, hydrochloric acid, and uranium are used in “franking fluid.” The Dangers of Fracking website claims that “there have been over 1,000 documented cases of water contamination next to areas of gas drilling as well as cases of sensory, respiratory, and neurological damage due to ingested contaminated water.”

Energy companies and websites like EnergyFromShale.org have gone on the offensive to tell their side of the story. According to EnergyFromShale.org, fracking provides abundant and clean burning energy, strengthens local economies, and reduces America’s reliance on foreign fuel. Two months ago Columbia Law School’s Thomas Merrill and David Schizer reported that “there is little evidence so far that subterranean fracturing activity can directly contaminate groundwater, and this risk may never materialize.” The long and short: both sides of the fracking debate are in an all out war filled with university studies and quotes from notable scientists, politicians and celebrities.

Those notable, and notably rich, people gathered at the EMA’s Saturday night to pat themselves on the back for a few hours—much like the Oscars and Golden Globes. However, the self-aggrandizement associated with celebrities and award shows was trotted out for a good cause this time, albeit a profitable one for the stars in attendance.

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45 comments

Carrie-Anne Brown

thanks for sharing :)

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heather g.
heather g3 years ago

It's rare to come across one person that actually supports fracking. Does she own shares?

On the other hand, thank you to all those Care2 readers who are well-informed about the further damage to our world.

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Barbara D.
Past Member 3 years ago

Ros, that's correct if you're only referring to *hydrofracturing* ~ most people's perception of *fracking* ~ which has only been used extensively since 2003-2005.
The majority of our wells now do utilize hydrofracturing technology.

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B J.
BJ J3 years ago

Thanks.

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Dave C.
David C3 years ago

noted...we need to get off all oil, nat gas, coal asap!!!!

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Barbara D.
Past Member 3 years ago

Ravaged???? I'd like to know where. This land is straight off a picture postcard!
The only thing that's ravaged Pennsylvania is coal. Miles and miles of barren black hills of waste products, mine subsidences, tunnel fires, buildings coated with black soot.....
No thank you, we prefer fracking.

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Barbara D.
Past Member 3 years ago

I live in N.E. PA on the Marcellus Shale bed in one of the largest producing areas in the country. We have over 1500 active wells in the Tri-County area, 17 within walking distance of my farm and 2 on my property. Welcome to Dimock, PA, the anti-fracking lobby's poster child.
Surprise!! We are all alive and well, our dairy cows are thriving, our water, air and soil are not contaminated. The only effects natural gas has had on our area are zero unemployment, county services, a refurbished and equipped hospital, 3 renovated and equipped school systems, our defunked family farms are running again, businesses are opening, we have actual roads instead of jeep trails, we have police and fire departments, our taxes have been cut, we were given assistance to convert to gas and pay minimal cost for gas from our hefty little royalty checks all courtesy of the Company.
SB, if you're referring to Promised Land ~ when the film crews arrived (with their trucks of bottled water for us poor residents - HaHa) they discovered they had nothing to film and were laughed out of town. That movie was pure...Hollywood...dadadada.....Hollywood!

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S B.
S B3 years ago

I am from Upstate NY where most people are against fracking. Barabara D., maybe you need to see the film Drill Baby Drill. I don't know who you have talked to in PA, but it has NOT been carefully researched & regulated. I live in NY & the people from PA who were in the film actually came to our showing of the film & brought their "dirty water" with them. I know a lot of people in PA who show up for our NY rallies against fracking in NY & they vehemently tell us to protest & NOT allow fracking into our state. I even know repugs who after seeing how the beautiful PA countryside has been ravaged by fracking, are against fracking.

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Melissa F.
Melissa DogLover3 years ago

thank you.

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Barbara D.
Past Member 3 years ago

Ros, the natural gas companies have been actively and heavily producing in this area of Pennsylvania for well over the last 40yrs.

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