In just the last couple of years, environmental agencies, foundations, bloggers, and filmmakers have thrust the natural gas extraction method of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, into the public’s consciousness. Arguing that fracking poses serious environmental concerns such as water contamination, flammable water (scientifically linked now), methane emissions, and even earthquakes (linked by U.S. Army and U.S. Geological Society, as well), activists hope to raise awareness about the dangers of fracking. On the other side of the debate are those who argue for the value of fracking. Not only can extensive natural gas reserves be accessed through this process, but also the extracted gas burns cleaner than coal.
This heated debate over fracking will continue to consume national media pages into the future; however, the SnagFilms documentary Battle For Wetzel County, examines the issue on a more localized level. Following the lives of rural West Virginians, National Geographic reporter Roshini Thinakaran brings to light the struggles locals face as a result of a recent boom in fracking activity. From polluted creeks to property disputes, Battle for Wetzel County gives its viewers a brief yet striking glimpse of the transformation currently taking place in Wetzel County, West Virginia.
The film may be watched here for free, at snagfilms.com, or embedded into websites, blogs, and social media outlets.