Gasland: The Unconventional Natural Gas Debate

Gasland is the story of unconventional natural gas extraction across the US and the impact such work is having on residents living close to the natural gas wells. Josh Fox, the director and narrator of Gasland, begins the film in his Pennsylvania back yard and the picturesque stream that flows through it. Fox was born and raised on the property place and is concerned he receives a letter from a natural gas company requesting he sell his property for the purposes of natural gas extraction.

Fox then begins a cross-country tour detailing the hazardous effects fracking (the process by which unconventional natural gas is extracted) is having on local homeowners and the environment. Nominated for a 2011 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature and winner of a 2010 Sundance Film Festival Special Jury Prize, Gasland has been a lightening rod for controversy.

Gasland has won praise for the first of a kind exposition on the unconventional natural gas industry and has also drawn a lot of criticism from the Natural gas industry itself for what it describes as mischaracterizations and misinformation. In fact, Energy in Depth, an industry lobby group, wrote a letter to the Motion Picture Academy trying to get the picture removed from the list of documentary finalists because of factual inaccuracies. You can find a trailer for Gasland here.

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