Journalism in the Public Interest

Fracking: The Music Video

A great video explaining fracking.

Have you been curious what all the hubbub on "fracking" is about? Here is a fabulous music video explaining it:


Here's more about the video, which was done by David Holmes and other talented journalism students at Jay Rosen's NYU's Studio 20. It was part of their collaboration with us to build better explanations for stories. For more on fracking, its lack of regulation, and the potential for drinking water contamination, check out our now nearly three-year running investigation.

This video is pure Genius. I loved it! Anybody can understand what “Fracking” is, now. Good job, Guys!

Eat the Babies

May 12, 2011, 11:37 a.m.

I… I… love it so much.
and I’m really glad that they didn’t just make it all words but got some good graphics in there. There’s a YouTube trend of all words videos lately and it kinda leaves me cold.

Really catchy, too… Man, I am spreading this around.
Fracking Earth Day Comic

Nathan Kohlmeier

May 12, 2011, 12:22 p.m.

Brilliant! Good job!

Terry Latschar

May 12, 2011, 3:30 p.m.

Amazingly creative and sadly exactly right.  Everybody needs to spread this everywhere! I’ll do my part. Thanks for caring!

William Burke

May 12, 2011, 4:23 p.m.

It’s very creative and informative, but unless you have already seen video of the kitchen tap water on fire, you don’t quite get it.  One of those instances should be IN THIS VIDEO to bring the message home.  Otherwise, great.  Thanks.

Fabulous. What a great way to present info!!

Charlie PA TPk

May 13, 2011, 6:41 a.m.

Um, except the whole theory of global warming has been utterly disproved.


@Charlie PA - even is global warming isn’t an issue for you, the outcomes of fracking out to be.

Clever but still full of all the same old false hyperbole.  First, fracing is NOT a form of drilling.  Second, fracing didn’t just magically start in 2005 when the Energy Policy Act was signed - the practice has been used for 50+ years.  Third, Bush did not exempt fracing from the SDWA, it was never regulated under the SDWA as was reaffirmed numerous times by congress, often by the Democratic majority.  I could go on and on.  Time for both sides of this argument to deal in facts.

Well done video.

Milt does have some points—such as that Fracking isn’t brand new, even though it is going from a rare to (VERY) commonplace practice.

Now, by the way, do you have the lyrics posted somewhere?

PS ... sigh ...  your first link has the lyrics.  Thanks/sorry.

FrackTrack releases an Interactive Marcellus Shale Mapping Application and Social Networking website at

Our users can search for permit data, violations, waste and gas production information on our easy to use interface.  Website developers can also embed our maps into their applications by visiting

Landowner groups can also organize and keep one another informed about gas development activity in their areas at  So sign up today and stay informed.

They don’t mention the most important thing—Fracking will put out the fires in Hell and when I get there it will be cold and damp!

Milt thinks he’s on top of the issue, but let me respond…First, high volume, slickwater, multistage, hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling into shale IS a new technology and process that has only been around since 2002, when multistage hydraulic fracturing was first introduced.  This is the frac’ing process that we are talking about, not your grandpappy, 60 year old shallow, vertical drilling and frac’ing that only used up to 75,000 gallons of fluid, as opposed to at least 5 million gallons plus anywhere from 25,000 to 100,000 gallons of toxic chemicals, plus proppant that is often coated with acrylonitrile.  These are the proportions used to frac a 5,000 foot lateral in shale (the chemical components are a proportion of between 1/2 of 1 % to 2% of the fluid).  If you think these are the same processes, then, I’ll give you $75,000, you give me $5 million, ok?

Second, Congress and Bush did exempt frac’ing from a number of Federal laws, the SDWA and Clean Air act among them.  The fact that the EPA never actively regulated frac’ing prior to the 2005 Energy Bill shaped by Bush, Cheney and the oil industry, is not the point.  The EPA had the authority to do so prior to the 2005 Bill, and the 2005 Bill removed most of that authority from the EPA. 

If the EPA had the authority, it would regulate every such multistage, horizontally drilled well as an “injection well”, for just starters.  After all, in the Marcellus Shale, only between 10% and 20% of the toxic fluid injected at up to 15,000 psi is returning to the surface.  Therefore, on a 5,000 foot lateral, between 4 million and 4.5 million gallons are remaining underground to migrate in ways that have not been studied.  That, my friends, is an injection well by any other name, and if the authority had not been removed, the EPA would be regulating it.

Thank goodness, things seem to be changing, and the EPA is beginning to get back on the job.

LOVE IT…....great animation and art work well done! Although the are not being regulated I believe the reason is because they would definitely fail. I would love to see another one just like the other one only using a BAN ON FRACKING THEME!!! Good job people…very well done! (no pun intended)

Neat video, but sort of a rip-off of Flight of the Conchords, doncha think?

It would behoove everyone to take a look at the research done by Dr. Theo Colburn and the Endocrine Disruption Exchange to see what chemicals comprise the fluids used in fracking.  The potential dangers to our water supplies and the health of all who are exposed to these chemicals is not something to ignore in favor of “energy independence”, which will never happen in this country.  Why else would we be at war in all the high energy producing countries?

Terry Latschar

May 14, 2011, 11:44 p.m.

James Barth - Thanks for that great research and information! That helps me feel like I know what I’m talking about when I try to explain it to uninformed friends.

I would add that in 1985, I lived in a house whose well was drilled through a coal seam filled with methane (Coal bed methane) and when I lit the kitchen faucet had a three foot flame….constant, not flashing.  Full disclosure is that this did not have to do with fracking although this sort of gas migration is known to happen as a result of fracking.  Another point of interest no one mentions is the fact that the US is now exporting natural gas…........why? if we want to be “energy independent”?

This is the dumbest thing I have ever seen!

Maura Youngman

May 16, 2011, 5:08 p.m.

I think this is just so cool. Talk about making a potentially abstruse, faraway investigative chunk of work more digestable. And embedddable. And catchy. So neat!

Just have to compliment them on a great job!  Excellent!

frackin mcmackin

May 17, 2011, 10:56 p.m.

far out keep up the fight save the water save the future thanks great job

no frackin mcmackin

May 17, 2011, 11 p.m.

sorry thats no frackin mcmackin again thanks great job

@Babs   ~you’re still asleep then.

Amylou Wilson

May 24, 2011, 10:14 a.m.

GREAT video. GREAT explanation of fracking!

The video will do much justice to raise the awareness in the dangers of fracking.  Underground disturbances in this process are the next “Erin Brockovich” movie expose for effects fracking negligence has caused to the populations and devastation in our precious waterways.

I liken the lax in regulatory policies to all those who place wealth and power above the value and worth of people.  For it will be this open door that greed will beset those economically depressed towns under the guise that oil drilling will find reason as the answer to employment woes and economic stimulus.

At this time there is no ‘safety in fracking” to convince me otherwise.

This article is part of an ongoing investigation:

Fracking: Gas Drilling’s Environmental Threat

The promise of abundant natural gas is colliding with fears about water contamination.

The Story So Far

The country’s push to find clean domestic energy has zeroed in on natural gas, but cases of water contamination have raised serious questions about the primary drilling method being used. Vast deposits of natural gas, large enough to supply the country for decades, have brought a drilling boom stretching across 31 states. The drilling technique being used, called hydraulic fracturing, shoots water, sand and toxic chemicals into the ground to break up rock and release the gas.

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