In an unannounced climate-change ad running in upstate New York, the Hillary Clinton campaign declares allegiance with the anti-fracking movement, despite the candidate’s support for fracking. With images of dirty rigs and anti-fracking protest signs, the narrator promises that a President Clinton will “stand firm with New Yorkers opposing fracking, giving communities the right to say no.”
The ad’s characterization of Clinton’s stance on fracking is technically accurate, though misleading, as Clinton will cede localities control over fracking, while supporting natural gas as a ‘bridge fuel’. One could say that Clinton will “stand firm” with other states supporting fracking, such as Wyoming, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania. Clinton has not taken a position on the Constitution Pipeline, a controversial fracked-gas pipeline being constructed through upstate New York from Pennsylvania. Clinton is on record supporting “new natural gas pipeline investment.”
Her opponent, Bernie Sanders, unequivocally opposes fracking nationally.
The television ad also credits Clinton’s work at the failed Copenhagen climate talks for “laying the groundwork” for the Paris climate agreement. The ad confusingly displays a photo of Clinton at Copenhagen under a Washington Post headline about the Paris talks six years later.
The ad began running in upstate New York communities on Wednesday, April 13, six days before the April 19th primary. It has aired over 200 times cumulatively on Albany, Rochester, Syracuse, Watertown, Elmira, Binghamton, and Utica stations.
The ad was not announced to the press by the campaign, allowing it to avoid scrutiny by fact-checkers or the public. Following New York, the election heads to Pennsylvania, where fracking is allowed.
NARRATOR: China. India. Some of the world’s worst polluters. As secretary of state, Hillary Clinton forced them to the table, making real change by laying the groundwork for the historic global agreement to combat climate change.
As president, she’ll invest in a clean energy future, and the jobs that go with it. And stand firm with New Yorkers opposing fracking, giving communities the right to say no. Because our future depends on getting this right.
CLINTON: I’m Hillary Clinton, and I approve this message.
Clinton has avoided taking any clear stand on fracking. While she has embraced the Clean Power Plan, which assumes a strong increase in natural-gas power plants, she also supports a much deeper investment in solar electricity than the baseline plan. The pro-Clinton Super PAC Correct the Record, run by David Brock, touts Clinton’s aggressive pro-fracking record.
Numerous grassroots groups have risen to oppose the toxic fracking of Pennsylvania and its labor abuses, including Marcellus Protest, No Fracking Way, Pennsylvanians Against Fracking, Keep Tap Water Safe, Stop Fracking Now, and Stop the Frack Attack.
As reported by the Intercept’s Lee Fang, “One of Franklin Square Capital’s investment funds, the FS Energy & Power Fund” the Intercept’s Lee Fang reports, “is heavily invested in fossil fuel companies, including offshore oil drilling and fracking.” The company cautions that “changes to laws and increased regulation or restrictions on the use of hydraulic fracturing may adversely impact” the fund’s performance.
Through its fund, Franklin Square invests in private fracking and oil drilling companies across the nation, as well as Canada and the Gulf of Mexico. This includes heavy investment in Pennsylvania frackers.
Franklin Square companies in the Pennsylvania fracking industry
- Ameriforge Group
- Atlas Resource Partners
- Cactus Wellhead
- Chief Oil & Gas
- Cimarron Energy
- Eclipse Resources
- EV Energy Partners
- Exterran Partners
- Gardner Denver
- Global Partners
- Gruden Acquisition
- Kenan Advantage Group
- Moxie Liberty
- Murray Energy Corp
- Vantage Energy
- Warren Resources
- Zachry Holdings
Bold indicates a company that runs fracking wells in Pennsylvania (Eclipse Resources is a Pennsylvania-based company with fracking operations in Ohio). The other companies listed are industry service companies with business in Pennsylvania, including pipelines, trucking, chemicals, and power plants. Murray Energy runs coal mining operations in Pennsylvania.
Tickets to the event ranged from $1,000 to $27,000. Contributors at the $2,700 level got a photo taken with Clinton, and the $27,000 contributors were afforded the opportunity to meet and hear Jon Bon Jovi perform an acoustic set.
Speaking at a town-hall event in Iowa, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton announced her opposition to the approval of the Keystone XL tar-sands pipeline.
“I oppose it because I don’t think it’s in the best interest of what we need to do to combat climate change,” Clinton told the crowd.
This marks a dramatic turnaround for the Democratic frontrunner.
During Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State, her department recommended the pipeline be approved. Clinton let contractors for the pipeline’s owner, the Candian company TransCanada, control the approval process. A single State Department staffer assigned in the Bush administration to oversee the contractors remained in that position until October 2010. Public hearings on the State Department’s draft approval for the pipeline were run by a TransCanada contractor. As public outcry against the pipeline grew, TransCanada hired former staffers for Hillary Clinton to lobby on its behalf.
In March 2012, her husband and former president Bill Clinton announced his support of the pipeline’s construction, saying, “I think we should embrace it.”Samantha-Jo Roth:
.@HillaryClinton – “I oppose Keystone XL pipeline” #IAcaucus
Presidential spouse and contender Hillary Clinton has a busy agenda at the Clinton Global Initiative this year. She will open the conference on Monday and close it on Wednesday, with several appearances in between. Below is her public agenda:Sunday, September 21
- 6-8 PM Clinton Global Citizen Awards
- 12 PM Opening Plenary: opening conversation with Jim Yong Kim, President, World Bank Group and Ginni Rometty, Chairman, President, and CEO, IBM
- 5 PM Plenary on job training: remarks on the commitment announcements
- 8:45 AM Plenary on equality for girls on women: opening conversation with Bill Gates’ wife Melinda Gates
- 1:30 PM Breakout session: Filmed conversation with Sanjay Gupta on “investing in babies’ minds” with John McCain’s wife Cindy McCain, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, Children Television Workshop’s Rosemarie T. Truglio, Harlem Children’s Zone’s Geoffrey Canada
- 3:30 PM Closing Plenary: with Bill Clinton, astronauts Cady Coleman and Reid Wiseman, X PRIZE billionaire Peter H. Diamandis, Nelson Mandela widow Graça Machel
(President Barack Obama is scheduled to deliver brief remarks at approximately 2 PM on Tuesday, the day of the UN Climate Summit.)