Fracking Faces New Public Scrutiny With Movies

Will 'Promised Land' Change Tone of National Conversation?

Controversial: B’nai B’rith’s Perlman Camp in Lake Como, Pa. signed a lease to allow fracking on its land.
courtesy of b'nai b'rith
Controversial: B’nai B’rith’s Perlman Camp in Lake Como, Pa. signed a lease to allow fracking on its land.

By Reuters

Published December 24, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

(page 3 of 4)

Ahead of the release of “Promised Land,” some within the oil industry are already reading the film’s script online.

“Look, I don’t want to whistle past the graveyard. This film is going to be a challenge, and we’ll just have to see how it does on opening weekend,” said Chris Tucker of pro-drilling group Energy In Depth (EID), which is funded by industry. “In terms of popularization of the issue, it will have an effect.”

The oil industry wants to avoid another blow like the one it took from Fox’s 2010 “Gasland” film. Google search data shows online interest in fracking surged immediately afterwards.

For three years, Tucker has been working with other communications experts, “pounding the zone with facts” to counter what he calls false claims in “Gasland” and to promote drilling.

Films like “Promised Land” will get people curious and send them searching online, said Tucker, where he worries the term ‘fracking’ gets a bad rap. “People will go home and Google it, and the other side does really well on Google,” he said.

EID released its own pro-drilling film, “Truthland,” this year, dubbing it “the factual alternative to Gasland.”

LOSING PR BATTLE?

In some ways, the film blitz may be behind the times. Fracking has already come to dominate U.S. drilling over the last half-decade: Onshore rigs doing so-called unconventional drilling account for nearly two-thirds of the total.

Tucker and industry officials are regulars at conferences, in newspaper op-ed articles, and on TV to defend drilling.

On the environmentalist side, Fox travels widely to lead anti-fracking rallies, sometimes rousing crowds by playing a banjo, which is also featured in the Gasland soundtrack. He has enlisted help from artists including Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • Lusia Horowitz left pre-state Israel to fight fascism in Spain — and wound up being captured by the Nazis and sent to die at Auschwitz. Share her remarkable story — told in her letters.
  • Vered Guttman doesn't usually get nervous about cooking for 20 people, even for Passover. But last night was a bit different. She was cooking for the Obamas at the White House Seder.
  • A grumpy Jewish grandfather is wary of his granddaughter's celebrating Easter with the in-laws. But the Seesaw says it might just make her appreciate Judaism more. What do you think?
  • “Twist and Shout.” “Under the Boardwalk.” “Brown-Eyed Girl.” What do these great songs have in common? A forgotten Jewish songwriter. We tracked him down.
  • What can we learn from tragedies like the rampage in suburban Kansas City? For one thing, we must keep our eyes on the real threats that we as Jews face.
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • "Sometime in my childhood, I realized that the Exodus wasn’t as remote or as faceless as I thought it was, because I knew a former slave. His name was Hersh Nemes, and he was my grandfather." Share this moving Passover essay!
  • Getting ready for Seder? Chag Sameach! http://jd.fo/q3LO2
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.