Right now, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is considering lifting a temporary ban on fracking in New York, threatening communities' health, polluting vital water sources and opening up peoples' lands to gas exploration. You can help.
From Lady Gaga to Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon, Artists Against Fracking have got the backing of more than 200 artists in the fight to end fracking. See the full list of artists here.
Digital Journal reported recently on the visit by Artists Against Fracking to Pennsylvania, where Yoko Ono, Sean Lennon, Susan Sarandon and Mahatma Ghandi's grandson, Arun Ghandi visited families living in the area. These families have been severely impacted by fracking, which has robbed them of clean ground water.
Fracking, or to give it its full name, hydraulic fracturing, is a method of extracting natural gas and oil from rocks, at depths from 2,000 to 10,000 feet. What they do first is to drill deep wells straight down through the aquifer. The drilling then curves horizontally below the earth's surface and into its shale rock formations.
Once this is done, millions of gallons of water, laced with chemicals, is injected at extremely high pressure into the rock formations. This breaks apart the rock and frees trapped methane, along with other dangerous materials.
There are currently more than 27,000 wells in the US, each of which uses 1-8 million gallons of water and 80-300 tons of chemicals each time it is fracked. Wells can be fracked up to 8 times.
However, the danger is that only 4 of the 31 states that have major fracking projects have robust drilling rules in place. The fracking industry remains exempt from Clean Water, Safe Drinking Water and Clean Air Acts, hazardous waste disposal and other federal regulations.
In the video above you can hear and see what has happened in Pennsylvania through the whole fracking industry.
While fracking was previously banned in New York State, Governor Andrew Cuomo is currently considering a temporary lift to this ban, and this could happen within the next three weeks.
Award-winning filmmaker Josh Fox has made the short film about the visit by Artists Against Fracking to Pennsylvania, where people can hear from residents living with fracking, and explaining the problems resulting from the industry.
Artists Against Fracking are asking everyone to watch the film, and then prepare for a coordinated day of action on Twitter.
What they say is:
"Groups and communities across the country are organizing a "tweetstorm" targeting Governor Cuomo on Wednesday February 6th from 1pm ET until 4pm ET."
"What's a tweetstorm? A tweetstorm is when people agree to use twitter.com to tweet a message at a decision maker, pressuring him or her to make a decision. Think of it as a virtual protest at the Governor's office."
"Together we'll flood Governor Cuomo's Twitter inbox with thousands of tweets calling for a ban on fracking in New York."
If readers would like to get involved, here is what you should tweet:
Tell @NYGovCuomo #dontfrackny! Click to sign the petition @causes to protect clean & healthy communities: http://links.causes.com/s/clIHwX?r=gUBO
If readers prefer, they can go straight to the petition page and leave their mark.
Artists against Fracking
Sean Lennon, Yoko Ono, and Arun Ghandi visit with families impacted by dirty fracking operations in PA.