Groundswell Rising, a documentary on citizen opposition to fracking, will be presented at the Krehbiel Auditorium in Bethel College’s Luyken Fine Arts Center February 21 at 3:00PM. The filmmaker, Renard Cohen, will be present for the screening. This film is part of a series by the Kansas Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (KIPCOR).
Hydraulic fracturing, commonly referred to a fracking, is the process of shooting highly pressurized liquid into underground rock and shale formations to release trapped oil and gas. The large quantity of liquid left over from the fracking process is then injected into underground wells, an action that multiple studies say has been triggering long-dormant fault lines.
While fracking has not been proven to be directly responsible for the dramatic upsurge in earthquakes in Oklahoma and southern Kansas, those quakes have brought up questions about the effects of fracking.
Renard Cohen’s 71-minute film Groundswell Rising further illustrates the myriad environmental and health concerns associated with growing use of fracking over the past 10 years and concentrates particularly on citizen opposition.
The film introduces viewers to various “fractivists,” from a group of concerned Colorado mothers who formed “Erie Rising” to a woman who has posted more than 400 YouTube videos documenting the effects of fracking to the organization “Fleased,” New York landowners who leased mineral rights before becoming aware of the harmful effects of shale gas exploitation.
Featuring commentary from an array of science and environmental experts and frequently anguished accounts by ordinary citizens whose drinking water and general health has been negatively affected by expansion of fracking into their communities, Groundswell Rising delivers its arguments with a mixture of facts and emotion.
Renard Cohen will be part of a panel to lead a talk-back session after the film. Joining Cohen on the panel will be Joe Spease, chair of the Kansas Sierra Club’s Fracking Committee, with others yet to be determined.
The Kansas Sierra Club and the Peace and Social Justice Center of South Central Kansas are co-sponsoring a reception, including showing clips of the film, February 20 at 3:00PM at Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church in Wichita.
There will be another reception in the KIPCOR office, 2515 College Avenue in North Newton, after the showing of Groundswell Rising at Bethel.
Cohen co-founded the Emmy Award-winning Resolution Pictures, whose clients include PBS, the Food Network and the Fine Living Network. He is also a composer and singer-songwriter who wrote and recorded the theme song for Groundswell Rising. He will be performing at both receptions.