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Articles by Kyle Rabin

Kyle Rabin serves as Director of The GRACE Communication Foundation’s Water and Energy Programs. Prior to GRACE, Kyle served as Executive Director at Friends of the Bay (Oyster Bay, NY) and worked as a senior policy analyst and campaign director at Riverkeeper, Inc. He began his work in the environmental arena in 1998 as an air and energy program associate at Environmental Advocates of New York.

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On a weekend trip near Monticello, N.Y., during the summer of 2010, my family and I visited some friends of ours, a married couple we’ve known for years. Over lunch, I mentioned that we had passed by several anti-fracking signs on our way to their home. Gasland had recently aired on HBO and I was curious what our friends thought about fracking (aka high-volume, horizontal hydraulic fracturing), so I asked them. There was a pause; our friends looked at each other uneasily. Long story short, in 2009, they had leased some land they own in Pennsylvania to a gas drilling company.

To their credit, our friends, both of whom are environmentally conscious, considered the potential impacts to the community and environment before they signed. Of course at that time, the gas industry’s greenwashing campaign had successfully convinced many people that this domestically produced fuel would help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, since natural gas burns more cleanly than coal. (A claim that has increasingly been called into question.)

Before fracking had become as controversial... Read more