No Fracking Way

Energy-in-Depth (EID) “GAS”roots – 1

by Dory Hippauf on August 20, 2012

Note: This is a series focusing on Energy-in-Depth (EID) and will be presented over the next few days.  The topic of EID and its “dots” is quite a tangled picture.  I hope, by presenting this in parts, it will avoid sending you, the reader, screaming from the room. 

 

Truthland
Truthland is a 34-minute movie created by the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA).  The Truthland website promo states:

  “In the HBO movie “Gasland,” New York City filmmaker Josh Fox tried to scare people into thinking that natural gas development and hydraulic fracturing are new, unregulated and dangerous. It made one Pennsylvania mom living atop the Marcellus Shale wonder what she was getting into. She asked environmentalists, academics and everyday people what they think. Nobody got paid to talk — all they were asked was to tell the truth.”

In general, Truthland is a 34-minute infomercial for the gas industry and is being caravanned around the various shale plays by Energy-In-Depth (EID).  Attendance at the showings has been small or mostly attended by “fractivists”.

I am not going to go into the anatomy of Truthland’s accuracy, there has been plenty written on that topic:  see: Truthland Lies – by Energy In Depth, Truthland Bombs in Buffalo, and Fracking Industry’s Answer to “Gasland”: Devised by Astroturf Lobbying Group and Political Ad Agency.

I will be looking at connections, or if you will – “the DOTS”.

Truthland – the DOTS

Figure 1: Bottom of Truthlandmovie.com website

As previously stated the movie was created by IAPP and EID.   EID is a project of the IAPP.

It appears the actual professionals filming, editing etc. of Truthland may have been done by Strategic Perceptions, Inc. (SPI).   (SPI was also involved with the Dirty Faces campaign (anti coal burning), a joint project by Chesapeake Energy and the American Lung Association.)  Truthland’s website was originally registered to Chesapeake Energy.     

Later it was changed to MFL Holdings, ATTN TRUTHLANDMOVIE.COM.

I have been unable to track down information regarding MFL Holdings, Inc. but will continue my search.

At some point, the Truthland website registration was changed again.  This time it is listed as being registered to the IPAA.

 

 

Strategic Perceptions, Inc., is not what you would characterize as non-partisan.   Perusing it the website, you will soon notice a pronounced tilt towards conservative and Republican positions.   CEO of SPI is Fred Davis.  Bloomberg BusinessWeek describes him as:

   Republican media strategist Fred Davis has made some of the most attention-grabbing political ads ever aired on television.” 

SPI writes:  “Unusual History of Fred Davis”.   Of special note here’s a short excerpt: (Emphasis added)

Davis was drawn into the world of politics in 1994 when, after having moved his business to Los Angeles in the mid 80′s and rechristening it as Strategic Perception Inc., he received a call from his uncle, then Oklahoma Congressman James M. Inhofe, to help rescue his campaign for the U.S. Senate.”

Senator Inhofe:
James Inhofe is a Senator and a Representative from Oklahoma. He served in the Oklahoma State house of representatives 1967-1969; State senate 1969-1977; unsuccessful candidate for Governor of Oklahoma 1974, and for the U. S. House of Representatives 1976; mayor of Tulsa 1978-1984; elected as a Republican to the One Hundredth and to the three succeeding Congresses and served from January 3, 1987, to November 15, 1994, when he resigned, having been elected to the United States Senate in the November 8, 1994, special election to the unexpired portion of the term ending January 3, 1997, left vacant by the resignation of David L. Boren; took the oath of office on November 17, 1994; elected for a full term in 1996; reelected in 2002, and again 2008 for the term ending January 3, 2015

Inhofe sits on the following Committees:

  • Ranking Member, Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works
  • Senate Committee on Armed Services
  • Member, Subcommittee on Airland
  • Member, Subcommittee on Strategic Forces
  • Member, Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support
  • Senate Committee on Foreign Relations
  • Ranking Member, Subcommittee on East Asian and Pacific Affairs
  • Member, Subcommittee on International Operations and Organizations, Human Rights, Democracy and Global Women’s Issues
  • Member, Subcommittee on International Development and Foreign Assistance, Economic Affairs and International Environmental Protection
  • Member, Subcommittee on African Affairs

Inhofe Campaign Finance per Opensecrets.com:

Energy-in-Depth has devoted an entire page to Inhofe, notably focusing on the “crucify” comment made by then EPA official Al Armendariz.

 Inhofe is also featured on IPAA, and in a press release “IPAA Expresses Support for Legislation Reaffirming States Are Best-Suited to Regulate Hydraulic Fracturing”.

“Today, Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK), ranking member of the Senate Energy and Public Works Committee, introduced the FRESH Act which clarifies that states have primary jurisdiction over regulation, permitting, and developing guidance of hydraulic fracturing technology. President and CEO Barry Russell expressed the Independent Petroleum Association of America’s (IPAA) support:

 “America’s oil and natural gas producers have safely utilized hydraulic fracturing technology since 1947. Recently, independent producers have combined horizontal drilling with hydraulic fracturing to unlock vast reserves of oil and natural gas from shale, the development of which is creating millions of jobs and securing our energy future.

 “This legislation clearly defines the states’ expertise in regulating hydraulic fracturing. After all, state governments have carefully and successfully regulated hydraulic fracturing for decades. Recently, they have taken initiative to upgrade their regulatory regimes through the innovative programs of State Review of Oil and Natural Gas Environmental Regulations (STRONGER) and FracFocus.”

Energy-in-Depth (EID) “GAS”roots will continue with Part 2: The Birth of Energy-In-Depth

——————————————————————-

Of somewhat related Interest:
FrackFocus and Fig Leaves

Personal Finance Disclosures filed by Inhofe may be seen on Opensecrets.com.

For those of you in Oklahoma, I thought you might want to know what Sen. Inhofe has been working on this year:  INHOFE’S PILOT’S BILL OF RIGHTS BECOMES LAW    

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), a member of the Senate General Aviation Caucus and certified flight instructor with more than 10,000 flight hours, today announced that his Pilot’s Bill of Rights (S.1335) has been officially signed into law. Inhofe has worked to pass the legislation for the past year. In the Senate where the bill enjoyed co-sponsorship by 65 other Senators, the measure passed by unanimous consent in June. The House passed the measure by a voice vote.   

Last October, the bill garnered the endorsement of pilot and actor Harrison Ford. The next month, the bill crossed an important milestone gaining its 60thco-sponsor in the Senate.

 

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Chip Northrup August 20, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Jimbo Inhofe – that fracking pinhead –

http://www.care2.com/causes/sen-inhofe-the-bible-proves-global-warming-is-a-hoax.html

Is the founder of Energy In Depth’s uncle ?

That’s pretty fracking funny

Reply

Dory Hippauf August 20, 2012 at 3:45 pm

EID was created by IPAA.

SPI (Strategic Perceptions Inc) CEO is Fred Davis, SPI appears to be the one with many fingers in the making of “truth”land. Inhofe is Fred Davis’s uncle.

Reply

Dan Tomkinson December 30, 2012 at 12:53 pm

In re . STRONGER and the argument that the individual states are best suited to regulate mineral and resource extraction industries:

PA’s regulation of mining over the course of it’s history turned the entire state into a Superfund site as well as the creation of a permanent furnace in Centralia.

STRONGER recommendations to PA were ignored as they pertain to the mitigation of well known hazards new Shale Drilling development presents to the environment when done in the proximity to the hundreds of thousands of legacy wells drilled (and fracked) in PA since the late 1800s. STRONGER recommended mandatory plugging of abandoned wells in proximity to new development. The PA government happily ignored that recommendation in their draft of regulatory updates, suggesting a “voluntary” effort of the industry to plug it’s legacy wells. We all know how well that works….

Every single incidence of methane migration the state has ever documented, they have tied, in one way or another, to drilling in proximity to existing abandoned wells.

PA itself has no clue how many legacy wells actually exist. We’re digging into the old records here at SaveourstreamsPA and doing what we can to document these wells electronically by sifting thru historical society records, library books and Geological Survey maps and translating these records into Google maps. Our hope is to publicly shame PA into acting responsibly. (Wish us luck)

Maybe in Oklahoma the state has the necessary tools to regulate this industry (I’m highly skeptical), but here in PA, we have a 150 year history of failing miserably at regulating extraction industries.

Reply

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