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Making media work for your agenda: an example

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posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 01:28 PM

Fracking not to blame for shale gas pollution

Interesting thing we can find here....

Don't blame fracking for environmental problems associated with extracting gas from shale. That's the message of a new report from the Energy Institute at the University of Texas at Austin, released on the opening day of the AAAS meeting in Vancouver, Canada.

So we are told of this 'message' by the bureau editor of New Scientist.

Third paragraph:

Reviewing existing studies, Groat's team could find no evidence linking groundwater contamination to fracking operations many hundreds of metres below.

Yet if you visit the The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) website.....

The Problem

The recent discovery of more than 200 years of secure, domestic natural gas sources bodes well for our Nation’s energy future. These reserves, now accessible because of hydraulic fracturing shale, are predominantly found in Texas, New York, Pennsylvania – in the Barnett, Haynesville and Marcellus shale plays, respectively. The problem is that the development of these vast shale gas resources through “fracing” has been accompanied by claims of damage to groundwater and surface water. To date, however, no credible, independent research has been conducted to support or rebut these environmental concerns.


In late 2010, the Energy Institute discussed its proposal with a major trade association representing the natural gas industry. After extensive negotiations, the organization declined to support both modules of the research in an acceptable manner, and the Institute formally withdrew its proposal.

Today, the need for an independent, peer-reviewed analysis of the environmental impacts of fracing remains as strong as ever. The stakes are even higher when one considers that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency plans to issue regulations on fracing early as next Spring, though no independent review of literature or analysis of environmental concerns regarding fracing has been conducted.

A consortium of companies involved with production of natural gas from hydraulic fracturing of shale could provide the funding required for this initiative.

Now ... from looking at this... it is clear THEY DON'T KNOW one way or the other.....

Does that equate to the title of this article:
"Fracking not to blame for shale gas pollution" ????

You can almost bet that the title of this article will figure prominently as a citation by the industry to show the 'support' the scientific community has for "fracing."

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 01:31 PM

off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 02:25 PM
Trying for brevity this time.

Many people are saying that fracking does a whole bunch of bad things.

This study says there is no good evidence showing this claim to be true.

Am I missing anything of substance

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 02:52 PM
reply to post by charles1952

I believe that the material supporting their claim that there's no supporting information for the claim includes the admission that there is no supporting information that it doesn't either.

Kind makes a difference when you include both sides of the story.
edit on 17-2-2012 by Maxmars because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 03:35 PM
reply to post by Maxmars

Dear Maxmars,

Fine, I can accept that, you're quite right. This leads me to two conclusions:

1.) The report writers or their publicity staff made a real botch of the way the information was presented.

2.) There's no reason yet for a ban on fracking. (I'm making the very risky assumption that the government won't make a scientific decision without scientific evidence.
Sometimes, I crack myself up.)

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 03:59 PM
reply to post by charles1952

I'm seeing this kind of thing more and more often. I suppose I could make a hobby of collecting it.... if it weren't for the fact that few care.

It just irritates me that we are treated to this 'substitute' for journalism all to frequently. And their method of obscuring reality is so subtle that most wouldn't have the time to chase down the specifics; accepting rather, the title of the article as an accurate reflection of the report.

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 04:13 PM
reply to post by Maxmars

Dear Maxmars,

I have to agree with you completely, again. (It's not that hard to do, you're absolutely right.)

As a Mod, and long time member, you've probably seen dozens (hundreds?) of threads where either the thread headline or the article lead is misleading or false. What's going on? I think several things.

People are not objective, they want their side to win. Sometimes, so badly they "see" what they need to see for victory over their enemies on the other side of the discussion. I can readily believe that that could easily have happened with this report and with the way it was covered. That also applies to a news "consumer" who skims through an article looking for just the right sentence to beat their opponents with, ignoring the rest.

When the news "producer" knows what is audience wants, and slants that way himself, they feed on each other getting more and more extreme. This can be seen in sovereign citizen blogs, or man-made global warming blogs, or any source that puts wanting to win above reporting and interpreting the news.

And let's face it, it's difficult for either the producer or consumer to find the time or mental objectivity to look for the truth among the competing claims. My hope is that ATS will facilitate that.

With respect,

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 04:44 PM
reply to post by charles1952

Thank you. I must admit the cumulative exposure to this sort of thing can make me terribly cynical at times... especially when people around me discuss "news" items they have read or been exposed to... I often find myself desperate to get away from the stream of inane drivel that the media injects into our culture... and I weep for the children who aren't being taught the critical thinking skills they need to circumvent the nonsense; or at least cope with the resulting confusion....

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 05:39 PM
A study has concluded that shooting yourself in the head with a high calibre gun, will not in fact kill you. It is however very likely to improve cognitive thinking and make you better in bed.

posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 06:24 PM
It's like those guys in charge of the fracking sat down to think how to call what they're doing.
One of the guys was like: ''We should call it fracking, because we're #ing the earth!''

You won't get that if you've never seen BSG.

posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 06:29 AM
reply to post by Maxmars

Well, might I suggest going to their website ( Just read the bios under "Who we are" - which include the cited Mr. Groat. It's a who's who of former Washington "insiders" so to speak. One worked for the US Geological Survey, the other was awarded undersecretary of such and such under Bush, several have Dept. of Energy on their resumes and one that read was "involved in legislation" which to me is just semantic gymnastics to mean "lobbyist for the energy sector".

posted on Mar, 4 2012 @ 09:13 PM
I saw a documentary on PBS a couple of years ago called 'Gasland' by Josh Fox, specifically addressing issues related to fracking. Here is his website:

Gasland Website

America's Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA) responded in kind:

ANGA - The Truth About Gasland

I think the documentary may be on You Tube in two parts. I would post the videos, but not only am I unsure as to how to post them, I really don't know if they comprise the actual documentary. And as 'Charles' pointed out, I am one of those folks who just doesn't have the time to properly engage. It's not a lack of desire, I just struggle to get by day-to-day.

I haven't really investigated the issue to the degree that I should in order to truly evaluate the evidence. However, I have lived long enough to come to believe that very few things are done by corporations that do not negatively impact either people or the environment - so at first blush, I am always cynical.

As far as your observation of these announcemnts regarding fracking, I have come to believe that the MSM has been coopted and is now being used ... not for the best of intentions. You have to sift through every damn thing that is presented to find the truth. This is time consuming and tiring. I pine for the days of Walter Cronkite and wish Reagan would have remained in films. From my perspective, 1980 was the year when the end began.

Please do not start with me, as I am neither a Democrat or Republican. I have come to believe that both parties have been coopted as well as the MSM. They are both tools being used in quite an adept manner. I just see 1980 as the point in time when the hoodwinking of America began in earnest, and Reagan was very polished. Not very intelligent, but polished. I know, it coincides with the proliferation of computers and the information revolution as well. It's just what I have come to believe ... and maybe it's some form of distorted nostalgia.

Back to the thread, it just amazes me that we keep coming back to these types of fuels as an answer to our energy problems. Even if (and I think it's a big if) fracking is ecologically sound, why would we want to do it? As much money is being spent for exploration, development, creating new methods of extraction and delivery, creating new markets (such as natural gas vehicles), and extending our reliance on this stuff ... couldn't we just spend that money on some other, renewable energy source and develop new markets for that new source? It just doesn't make sense.

Did you intentionally engage in two subjects? Fracking and Media as a tool? Or did I do that myself? LOL

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