Fracking “Show Don’t Tell” on This American Life


19 July 2011

If you listen to This American Life on NPR, you know that the show’s excellence lies in its storytelling, and its humanizing of complex issues.  Well, they’ve done it again – here is a painfully accurate portrait of the natural gas drilling conflicts (“fracking”), from the perspective of several key stakeholders, in Pennsylvania.  In the stories highlighted here, we see corporate profit vs public health, the ties between academic research and political power (i.e. funding), short-term vs long-term views on community wellness, and class conflict between local farmers and newcomers (usually urbanite transplants).

Despite all of the investigative pieces out there in the mainstream that question the health, environmental, financial, and social costs of hydrofracking, drilling goes forth with full force – somewhere in the realm of 100,000 wells to be drilled in the NY/PA region. (Governor Cuomo intends to lift the moratorium on fracking in NY state.)

My other posts on fracking here.


One Response to “Fracking “Show Don’t Tell” on This American Life”

  1. dannypeters Says:

    HEY! I heard this on the radio sometime while driving from NYC to Oklahoma. I was fascinated. Great, great stuff.

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