Top Ten Most Ridiculous Stunts Pulled by “Ban Fracking” Activists

Anti-fracking activists are preparing to descend on Oakland this weekend for what they have claimed will be the “the largest demonstration against fracking in U.S. history.”  Of course, as EID had noted on many occasions, those who are determined to shut down oil and gas development have often turned to stunts like tomorrow’s rally to push their ideology because they don’t have science on their side.  Saturday’s “March for Real Climate Leadership,” to the extent that it is an anti-fracking event, certainly qualifies, considering that it’s thanks to fracking and the increased use of natural gas that U.S. carbon emissions have dropped to their lowest levels in decades.

So, ahead of the rally, we thought we’d highlight ten of the most outrageous “ban fracking” stunts and distractions for your enjoyment.

  1. “‘Bed-in’ against Fracking”

Apparently Bez, a dancer and percussionist, is planning a week-long anti-fracking “bed-in” with his girlfriend at an upscale London hotel (the least expensive room at the Montcalm Hotel at The Brewery – which by the way, burns plenty of fossil fuels to pamper its 5-star guests – costs $344.93, or 226.80 GBP per night).

bed in

Photo: NME News

Here’s the reasoning behind the stunt according to Bez:

“Where John Lennon and Yoko Ono holed up for a week in the Presidential Suite at the Hilton Hotel Amsterdam for their ‘Bed-in for Peace’ on March 25, 1969, Firouzeh and I are compelled to do our ‘Bed-in against Fracking’ which has been thrust upon us all undemocratically. No one in Britain wants Fracking. But the government is, against the will of the people, trying to force it upon us all. And we’re not having it,” says Bez.

That ought to do the trick.

  1. Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon perform “Don’t Frack My Mother”

Speaking of Yoko Ono….

So that happened.

  1. Anti-Fracking activists glue themselves to the wrong gas station

Manchester “ban fracking” activists glued and locked themselves to gas pumps to protest Total’s announcement that it was investigating investments in the UK’s shale gas industry.  It seemed to be going just as planned: they managed to shut down the gas station for six hours causing it to lose a lot of revenue.  The only problem?  It was the wrong gas station.


Photo: The Blaze

  1. Food and Water Watch delivers 44 empty ‘petition’ boxes to Governor’s office

Food and Water Watch is known for its deceptive practices, which were on display last year in North Carolina as the group and its allies delivered “50 boxes” of anti-fracking petitions to Governor Pat McCrory’s office – the only problem was that 44 of them were empty!


Photo: WNCN News

 Not only did this “environmental” group deliver empty boxes, but it left a huge mess that state employees had to clean up. According to the Governor’s spokesperson:

Today’s petition drop-off is nothing more than the 44 empty boxes that this left wing group showed up with — a stunt trying to deceive the media and public,” Ellis said in a statement from the governor’s office. “Unlike this extreme political group, the governor’s office cares about the environment and we will devote our time to cleaning up and recycling the mess of empty political props that were left behind.

  1. Ban fracking activist says we “absolutely” need to go back to the Stone Age

We certainly give this gentleman points for honesty, as he recognizes, as many “ban fracking” activists do not, the real-world ramifications of his ideology.

  1. The Fracking Monster

Anti-fracking activists in Preston, UK have used their “fracking monster” in quite a few stunts.  As the Lancashire Evening Post reported, the monster says such thing as: “My name is Mr. Frackhead and I will be raping and pillaging your lands.”


 Photo: Lancashire Evening Post

  1. Alice Waters forgets a key ingredient in her restaurant: natural gas

“Ban fracking” activist group Food and Water Watch was able to enlist the support of legendary California chef Alice Waters (Berkeley’s Chez Panisse) in its “Chefs Against Fracking” campaign. The only trouble is, affordable natural gas is a crucial ingredient in the preparation of the once-Michelin-starred eatery’s food!


Alice Waters

Photo: Financial Times

  1. Coffee: Fractivist Blend

One Ithaca, NY roaster thought it would be clever to devise a “Fracktivist Blend,” of South American-sourced coffee. The label says that $2 off every 12 oz bag sold supports anti-hydraulic fracturing activities in New York State. South America, by the way, develops a lot of oil and natural gas.

So…when this company talks about “acting globally,” it means it’s OK to buy its coffee beans from a place where natural gas is developed, but “acting locally” means it is also OK to stunt the growth of natural gas development at home?


 Photo: Energy in Depth

  1. Anti-Fracking poetry

Dear Governor Cuomo: Sandra Steingraber and the Horseflies from Oceans 8 Films on Vimeo.

Anti-fracking activist Sandra Steingraber performs “A Poem For The Marcellus” at a 2012 anti-fracking benefit concert at the Egg.

10. Activists fly plane over pro-fracking rally to tell folks to stop using oil and gas

With no hint of irony at all, an anti-fracking group called United Shale Awareness flew a plane with a banner reading: “Shale Gas = Dirty Energy” over a pro-fracking rally in Pennsylvania, which the Sierra Club was happy to promote:

In lieu of the facts

It’s no surprise that activists have had to use gimmicks and extreme rhetoric in their crusade against fracking, given the long list of regulators and energy experts who have repeatedly backed the safety of the process and given that it’s thanks to fracking that carbon emissions are at twenty-year lows. There are certainly serious discussions to be had regarding environmental stewardship, but fringe activists choose instead to build monsters, brew coffee and glue themselves to gas stations. Actions like these are a far cry from genuine, solutions-oriented environmentalism of years past and, and they speak to the desperation of the anti-fracking enterprise.


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