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NPR Action



GOAL
: Disrupt operations at NPR for an afternoon to call attention to their continued reliance on the fracking industry, and failure to cover extreme energy extraction.

CONTEXT: NPR has been accepting millions of dollars in "sponsorship" from the American natural Gas Alliance for the last several years. In exchange for their support, NPR hosts like Steve Inskeep, Melissa Block and Audie Cornish routinely read messages like this that blatantly misrepresent the dangers of fracking to our planet and people.

We've delivered petitions, met with NPR's ombudsman and CEO, and cajoled their staff on Facebook and twitter. In response, we've been met with literal radio silence from NPR (they've never reported on our campaign, their ombudsman has never written a blog post or article, despite promising to do so) and they decided last week to reduce their climate reporting team to one person saying they don't feel "feel like [the environment] necessarily requires dedicated reporters"

The ANGA sponsorship, and the Climate coverage decision, were made by NPR national staff, not the local affiliates. When we give money to a pledge drive, or hear a local story on the impacts of fracking in PA, NY, CA or other states - that's the local affiliate working for us. But those stories are rarely shared on the NATIONAL shows like All Things Considered and Morning Edition, which in turn are under-written by ANGA. Even when the NPR hosts/shows do cover fracking and extreme energy, the impact is often diluted by a fracking sponsored message. As Josh fox said during an interview with Env Axn last April:

"You have an Exxon spot to start the segment, then an interview with me, and then an ANGA spot at the end of the segment ...That's what I call fracking the media, fracturing the civic debate ... Just as the media decline to accept tobacco money, they need to refuse this money from the fracking industry."

ACTION: We need to shake up and wake up NPR at the same time we demonstrate a better model of climate and fracking reporting - one that acknowledges the basic facts of climate and extreme energy, and tells the stories from the frontlines out: bringing stories of the people, places and communities directly destroyed by extreme energy extraction to a broad audience with compassion, wit and attention to detail. You know ... JOURNALISM!

Nov 6, Beyond Extreme Energy and Environmental Action will do just that by broadcasting our own live radio show from the Courtyard outside NPR. Our show will be a low-power FM radio show - meaning that people looking for NPR within about 12 blocks of our broadcast location will hear OUR show, instead of the NPR programming they are used to. For one hour on one day - we will replace "sponsored by fracking" messages on All Things Considered with "fracking truth" messages from BXE.
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