You’ve got to be kidding me . . . this from Greenwire:
‘Fracosaurus’ is star of pro-fracking coloring book (06/20/2011)
A Canadian energy company has created a coloring book it hopes will deliver a kid-friendly message about hydraulic fracturing.
The message in the book by Talisman Energy Inc. is overtly pro-drilling, as the leading character, a friendly “fracosaurus” named Talisman Terry, suggests to readers that the process is smart, safe and American.
One page of the book — which is available for free as a PDF on Talisman’s website — compares the height of a rig to the height of the Statue of Liberty and a California Redwood tree.
“There’s an emblem of America, an emblem of technology, an emblem of nature and an emblem of business,” said Lori Campbell, a children’s literature professor at the University of Pittsburgh. “It’s sending the message that we should be free to do whatever.”
Kid-friendly patriotic messaging from oil and gas companies is nothing new. Another friendly animal, Chesapeake Energy Corp.’s orange beagle named Chesapeake Charlie, touts gas from hydraulic fracturing as a “clean-burning, affordable abundant and American fuel.”
But issues surrounding the environmental and economic controversies about accessing gas trapped in the Marcellus Shale are not covered in the pages of “Talisman Terry,” an omission that has led to some concern.
An all-smiles book “undermines any of the negativity by making it all about fun and games,” Campbell said.
Talisman officials said kids cannot grasp the complexities of natural gas drilling.
“Let’s keep in mind our audience. If you’re talking age nine or younger, you can’t get into the questions like, ‘What is in fracking fluid?’” said Natalie Cox, the firm’s head of U.S. communications. “If we were making a presentation to the governor in Harrisburg, we’d get into technical details. But we wouldn’t give him a coloring book, either.”
The book is an effort to “create change in society by targeting children,” which could be dangerous but is far from brainwashing, Campbell said (Erich Schwartzel, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, June 19). — PK