New Yorkers Against Fracking
Just a few days after Vermont’s governor banned fracking in his state, we went to Albany to suggest to Gov. Andrew Cuomo that he follow his neighbor’s lead. Given the potential for the governor lifting the four-year moratorium on hydraulic-fracturing in New York at any moment — despite recent rumors that he will soon ask for more “cumulative impact” statements regarding the health and environmental risks related to the drilling process — the timing seemed appropriate to make an appeal at his front door.
The rally and concert were led by several Academy Award caliber actors and filmmakers — including actors Mark Ruffalo and Melissa Leo and documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney — and thirty-plus New York musicians, led by Natalie Merchant, Medeski-Martin-and-Wood and John Sebastian. Speakers during the unique night of spoken word and music included Sandra Steingraber and ‘Gasland’ producer Trish Adlesic; photos, videos, graphics and maps illustrated precise reasons fracking should not be allowed in the state.
The event grabbed the media’s attention, ranging from Rolling Stone to the Wall Street Journal, but my favorite review was posted within 90 minutes of the stage emptying, by a critic from the Albany Times-Union, who understood the night perfectly when he summed up that it was about “the message more than the music.”