The New York Times has a story on the front page of its business section headlined, “Natural Gas Now Viewed as Safer Bet.” Politico’s Morning Energy reports that Van Jones tweeted a response: “At least until the public learns that fracking poisons H2O.”
Van Jones appears to be a serious person. He is certainly highly respected in the liberal academic and political establishment. He earned a law degree at Yale University, founded three leftist activist organizations, and wrote a book, the Green Collar Economy. Time magazine named him a Hero of the Environment.
President Barack Obama appointed Jones in March 2009 to the new position of Special Advisor for Green Jobs, Enterprise, and Innovation at the White House Council on Environmental Quality. Jones resigned in September 2009 after controversies arose about several of his past statements and associations.
Van Jones is now a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and a distinguished visiting fellow at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson Center.
Van Jones feels comfortable broadcasting his opinion that fracking (that is, hydraulic fracturing of shale formations to produce natural gas) poisons the water. He feels comfortable because it has been repeated over and over again by environmental pressure groups, in the film Gasland, and recently in a silly front page article in the New York Times.
That’s how the left operates. Keep repeating some claim, no matter how poorly substantiated, over and over again, and then get the establishment media to amplify it.
It’s rubbish, of course. Hydraulic fracturing has been used 2.5 million times since 1949 to extract oil and gas. There have been some minor problems reported over the years. In most cases, these have been investigated and the causes determined. Learning from experience, monitoring, and technological improvements should make fracking even safer and cleaner in the future than it has been in the past.
But Van Jones is not interested in improving a well-established technology. He’s part of a crowd that wants to create a public stampede against fracking.
Appearances can be deceiving. Despite his establishment credentials, Van Jones is not a serious person.