Gasland director and MoveOn.org encourage “FrackingFighter” activism
Liberal activism group MoveOn.org recently sent out an email, in conjunction with Gasland director and Pennsylvania native Josh Fox, encouraging Pennsylvania members to promote a moratorium on fracking practices by natural gas drillers and energy companies.
To do this, Fox and MoveOn have put together a project called MoveOn FrackingFighters, in which anyone can apply for a $500 grant through MoveOn, as well as “a toolkit of materials like banners and clipboards, and training from experienced organizers“ to travel across the U.S., joining anti-fracking activists to pursue a moratorium on drilling.
“My two documentaries, Gasland and later Gasland 2, became award-winning films precisely because they called out the fracking industry for its lies and put a face on the millions of Americans at risk,” writes Fox, “along with our environment and global community—because of the largest domestic fracking campaign in history.”
The application asks questions like, “What motivates you to organize to stop fracking?”, “How do your background and life experience influence your values?” and to finish pre-written half-sentences, like “The goal of my campaign is to…” and “The decision-maker(s) [e.g., the mayor, the county commissioners, the governor, etc.] are…”
Fox’s first documentary, Gasland, explored the health and environmental effects of hydraulic fracturing in Pennsylvania and elsewhere. His second, Gasland 2, largely deals with the politics of the issue. While Fox and MoveOn are looking for a Pennsylvania member, the movement they’re attempting to build will take place all over the country, attacking both natural gas and oil drilling.
So-called FrackingFighters will “participate in a five-part training series with experienced organizers that will equip participants with core organizing skills, including: developing a strategy, building a core team, earning media coverage, and using online tools to grow their campaign. Trainings will be webinar-style, and will take place every two weeks at a day and time to be determined by the cohort,” according to MoveOn.
Pennsylvania allows natural gas drilling in the parts of the state which are above the Marcellus Shale and does not have a severance tax. The Democratic Party’s official platform calls for a moratorium on drilling, though none of their eight potential candidates for the 2014 Pennsylvania governor’s race say they would ban the practice in the commonwealth.
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