Saturday, January 05, 2013

Conflict of interest, anyone?

(AP Photo/Focus Features, Sam Jones)

Matt Damon's new movie "Promised Land,"

was made in part by a production company owned by the government of Arab oil emirate Abu Dhabi – a state in direct competition with American oil and gas producers.

The film is financed in part by Image Nation Abu Dhabi, a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi Media which is owned by the government of Abu Dhabi, one of 13 Arab emirates that makes up the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and serves as that country’s capitol.

That the UAE is a major natural gas and oil producer puts it in direct competition with U.S. natural gas producers, who have seen a revolution in production with the increased use of fracking – an old process that has found new uses as technology has made it possible to drill new wells and open up gas reserves that were once thought inaccessible.

As fracking has found wider use, especially in the U.S., natural gas production has soared, bringing new jobs and economic opportunity to many American communities and weakening the hold that states such as the UAE once had on oil and gas production and global prices.

Krasinski’s character presents a host of supposed environmental consequences the town will be faced with if it allows fracking to occur, including so-called flaming water, contaminated ground water, and sick livestock.

Those supposed consequences have all been debunked as either lacking in evidence or not resulting from fracking.

Colorado Department of Natural Resources scientists found that the methane in the wells was a natural occurrence, not a byproduct of fracking.

In another scene from the film, town supervisor Gerry Richards states that fracking can cause natural gas to seep into groundwater – a claim that has been debunked by EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, who has said publicly that there is no evidence of groundwater contamination from fracking.

“In no case have we made a definitive determination that the fracking process has caused chemicals to enter groundwater,” Jackson told Fox News in April 2012.

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