Celebrity 'fractivists': True advocates or NIMBYs?

Staff Writer
Columbus Monthly

NEW YORK (AP) — A celebrity-driven campaign against gas drilling has galvanized followers, but the facts can get drowned out by the glitz.

Some experts wonder whether the celebrities are enlightened or simply crying "Not in my backyard," even as their privileged lives remain entwined with fossil fuels.

Much of the activism is centered in New York City, where concerts, movies and plays use huge amounts of energy, gourmet chefs cook with gas, and most people — the glitterati included — heat with gas.

There's no doubt that critics have some legitimate environmental concerns. But experts say those are far from the whole story.

They note that in many cases, drilling is credited with cleaner air and large payments to landowners, and say claims that the nation can easily switch to renewables are oversimplified.