Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Journalist documenting dangers of hydraulic fracturing wins prestigious George Polk Award for Environmental Reporting

The 2009 George Polk Awards for journalism were announced today and the award for Environmental Reporting will go to Abrahm Lustgarten of ProPublica. Mr. Lustgarten "documented the deadly side effects of hydraulic fracturing, a natural gas-drilling process involving water — laden with carcinogenic contaminants — being shot underground to blast away at gas-bearing rock. His articles turned hydraulic fracturing into a national story and shifted the focus of the coverage from local business issues to safety concerns.

He traveled to five states where hydraulic fracturing is taking place and interviewed affected residents, doctors, scientists and rig workers. Mr. Lustgarten also pored over scientific papers and massive government reports, identifying a pattern of water contamination and raising questions about the science and safety of such drilling. Finding that pollution-reducing measures often are ignored and are not even required by many states, his series shed light on a new topic that could become a major issue as the country strives to develop more efficient ways to produce energy." [Press release]

View an interview on Democracy Now by clicking 
Read Mr. Lustgarten's extensive reporting @ ProPublica by clicking HERE. 

Congratulations to Mr. Lustgarten for bringing much deserved attention to this issue!

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