NY Women’s Pro-Drilling Group Rallies in Albany Today

In what is sure to rankle the anti-drilling movement, a new group of women have formed a pro-drilling group called “The Women’s Energy Leadership Coalition.” The new Coalition is holding a rally in Albany today to bring legislators the message that natural gas drilling can be done responsibly and safely, and New York desperately needs it—now.

The Coalition’s leader is Uni Blake, an environmental toxicologist and mother of five. Other leaders in the new coalition group are women of distinction with degrees in engineering and environmental sciences. One of the highlights of today’s meeting? A showing of Truthland, a movie made refuting Josh Fox’s fiction Gasland.

From the press release:

The Women’s Energy Leadership Coalition, a newly-formed organization of women community activists and business and industry leaders who have been advocating for safe and responsible natural gas development in New York, is convening in Albany on Tuesday, June 12th, to bring its message of safe and responsible natural gas development to the Legislature and Governor.

The day will feature an exhibit on the Wall of the Well of the Legislative Office Building where coalition members will be available to provide information to the public from 10:30 am to 11:30 am.

“The continued economic crisis in most communities in the Marcellus and Utica shale plays of upstate NY has severely impacted families and communities,” said Coalition leader Uni Blake, an environmental toxicologist and mother of five from Otsego County, New York. “The ultimate goal is to change the conversation from the bottom up; to reach into the lives directly impacted by energy development and to look at the positive possibilities available that are rooted in energy development that can give local communities the vitality that is currently lacking. ”

The group will also assemble at the Women’s Rights Exhibit on the second floor of the Capitol for a press conference at 12:00 p.m.

"From the suffragettes whose efforts won women the right to vote in 1919 to the iconic images of Rosie the Riveter doing it all on the home front in World War II, women have used their strength and determination to change society for their families," said Karen Moreau, Executive Director of the NYS Petroleum Council in Albany, NY and a mother of five. "The Women’s Energy Leadership Coalition is made up of women from all walks of life throughout our state who believe that further developing NY’s natural gas resources is environmentally safe, economically viable and the linchpin for keeping families together in New York state by providing good paying jobs and opportunity."

Coalition member Nancy Schmitt, President of Taum Sauk Capital Management in NYC and an environmental engineer, states "I’m trained in science and engineering, and I’m also a mother of three who wants her children to live in a vibrant New York state."

The event will feature a showing of the film “Truthland” – a direct rejoinder to the movie “Gasland”.  The film features a mother and farmer from Pennsylvania, who, shortly after watching “Gasland,” sets out on a cross-country tour in search of answers to questions she had regarding the safety of natural gas development– meeting a number of colorful characters along the way (and also some pretty knowledgeable experts). This is the first public screening of the 30-minute film before it embarks on a summer tour touching communities in over 12 states. The public is invited to view the film at 1:15 p.m. in Empire State Plaza Meeting Rooms 3 and 4.*

For information about the new group, contact: Anna Marie Lusins-Mclachlan, 607-287-4982, [email protected].

*Women’s Energy Leadership Coalition (Jun 11, 2012) – Women’s Energy Leadership Coalition Brings Message to Albany in Support of Natural Gas Development in NY