Tell the Major Networks to Stop Airing API’s Fracking Lies
By Kate Fried
When we watch the news, we would like to see credible, honest information about critical issues like our energy future — especially during election season. But the American Petroleum Industry (API) has other designs this year, shelling out untold amounts of cash on a misinformation campaign to sell the American public on the so-called wonders of natural gas. We aren’t buying it.
Large companies have always supported TV programming through their advertising dollars. There’s no getting around the fact that networks rely on advertisements to bring us our favorite shows. Yet there’s a distinct difference between a company trying to sell us a new car, and one that gobbles up the airwaves to seduce the public towards its thinly veiled political agenda.
API’s Vote 4 Energy campaign has flooded the airwaves and social media channels over recent months, trying to sell us on the notion that natural gas is clean and abundant, and that supporting its development is as patriotic as civic participation. According to the New York Times, the industry has spent more than $153 million this election year on ads promoting fossil fuels and knocking clean energy.
Why such an expense for an industry bent on making money? Because the oil and gas industry is in trouble. Even its darling, natural gas, is being debunked as just another dirty fossil fuel, and citizens around the world are fighting fracking.
It’s throwing money at its image problem—lots and lots of money, to wage its increasingly difficult public relations campaign. That’s the thing about powerful special interests; when they can’t get their way they try to spend their way out of their problems.
Many Americans are uninformed about the dangers of natural gas extraction, and with television ads on major networks costing a hefty sum, most of the groups seeking to educate the public with these facts can’t afford equal airtime.
That’s why we’re asking ABC, NBC and CBS to stop airing the oil and gas industry’s propaganda during national news broadcasts. We may not be able to match them in dollars, but we have two things on our side: the truth…and you. Are you just as tired of seeing oil and gas industry misinformation on your screen when you tune in to get the news of the day? If so, take action today, and ask the major networks to stop airing API’s fracking lies.