On Thursday, MoveOn members joined Americans Against Fracking—and actress and activist Daryl Hannah—at the White House to deliver 650,000 public comments to the Bureau of Land Management demanding a ban on fracking on public and Native American lands. All told, concerned Americans submitted more than 1 million comments—the largest unified outpouring ever from Americans calling for a change in course on fracking:
While that was going on in D.C., the president met boisterous crowds in Buffalo and Syracuse, New York, all calling on him to say no to fracking. Activists in New York have succeeded in keeping fracking out of the Empire State, and they’re following Governor Cuomo—who joined President Obama in Syracuse—everywhere he goes, to make sure he keeps New York frack-free:
Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is the dangerous practice of injecting cancer-causing chemicals, sand, and massive amounts of water at high pressure deep underground to release hard-to-reach oil and gas deposits.
President Obama says he is serious about curbing climate change. But he’s also overseen the near-doubling of natural gas production, using fracking, from 2010 to 2012.1 Methane, which is released in fracking for natural gas, is at least 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas over the critical 100-year period, and scientists have called fracking a “gangplank to a warm future.”2 That’s why MoveOn members have joined our allies to take the message directly to President Obama: “Yes we can ban fracking!”
But not just President Obama! We’re fighting back on multiple fronts. Earlier this month, twenty-two-year-old community college student and MoveOn leader Ashley Williams delivered more than 16,000 petition signatures to Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, demanding that he block a mining project near Illinois’ most popular state park—Starved Rock State Park—for the special silica sand used in fracking that threatens the park, Ashley’s hometown of Ottawa, Illinois, and workers’ health. Here’s Ashley, right before she met with the Governor’s chief of staff for legislative affairs:
Last week, MoveOn members and our friends at CREDO rallied in Ventura County, California—where fracking is happening now—calling for a statewide ban on fracking, and earning headlines in the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Ventura County Star. California has 15 billion barrels of heavy crude oil buried underground—that if fracked and burned, would create nearly as much global warming pollution as the Keystone XL pipeline:3
That’s not all. Also this month, Kentucky MoveOn member Corlia Logsdon made headlines and got Governor Steve Beshear’s attention when she and 200 supporters delivered thousands of petition signatures to Governor Beshear, calling on him to stop the construction of the Bluegrass Pipeline that would carry fracked gas from Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia, and destroy her community’s land:
I could go on and on. MoveOn members in 37 states have launched local campaigns to protect our climate and our communities from fracking, and hundreds of thousands from across every state submitted comments to President Obama. I wanted to make sure you got a glimpse of the amazing leadership among our ranks.