An Open Letter to Governor Cuomo: Ban Fracking Now


Dear Governor Cuomo:

First, let me say I am grateful to you for your service to New York both as governor and especially as attorney general, where you accomplished a lot of good.

As attorney general, you defended property owners across New York State from land-grab tactics of the shale gas industry, which you rightly characterized as misleading, bullying, and deceptive. As you said in 2009, “Many of these companies used their size and extensive resources to manipulate individual property owners. This land grab must stop.” [1]

I would just ask you now, What has happened to change your opinion of the shale gas industry in three short years, during which the industry itself has not changed in the least?

Please, Governor Cuomo, honor the good work of Attorney General Cuomo by coming to our defense now, and banning hydraulic fracturing throughout New York State.

Do not forsake the most vulnerable of New York landowners by turning their counties into “sacrifice zones” to be exploited for an uncontrolled experiment in fracking. As a former attorney general in a state with a pre-eminent health care sector, you know that the ethics of informed consent prohibit taking advantage of people driven by desperate circumstances to become subjects in experiments that entail significant risk to their safety and well-being.

Do not abandon our beautiful state, so blessed with truly valuable resources of pristine water, fertile agricultural land, and smart, enterprising, hard-working people.

We do not need shale gas – which, contrary to industry claims, is increasingly recognized as the dirtiest fossil fuel of all in terms of climate change [2] – as a bridge to sustainable energy.

Governor Cuomo, show true leadership. New Yorkers have the will and the wherewithal to support sustainable industry, agriculture, and tourism throughout our state without dirty money from a dirty industry. Just use your bully pulpit to ask us. Let New York be a beacon for the future, not another casualty of the past.

Governor Cuomo, Ban Fracking Now!

William Avery Hudson


1. Wilber T. Under the Surface: Fracking, Fortunes, and the Fate of the Marcellus Shale. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 2012.

2. Humes E. Fractured Lives: Detritus of Pennsylvania’s Shale Gas Boom. Sierra. July/August 2012.

Donoma – New Directors/New Films 2012


Writer/Director: Djinn Carrénard
Cast: Emilia Derou-Bernal, Laura Kpegli, Salomé Blechmans, Sekouba Doukoure, Vicent Perez, Matthieu Longatte, Delphine II, Laetitia Lopez, Marine Judeaux
France, 2011

29 March 2012, Walter Reade Theater, NYC

Famously shot with no producer, no budget, and one borrowed camera, Donoma (an Omaha name meaning “Sight of the Sun”) reflects on three different kinds of love – passionate, cerebral, and saintly – from the perspective of one who knows that most of us are looking for all three kinds of love in one person.

A high-school Spanish teacher, Analia (Emilia Derou-Bernal) transgressively molests her defiant student, Dacio (Vincent Perez), precipitating a breakup with his girlfriend Salma (a transcendent Salomé Blechmans). A solitary Ghanese immigrant (Laura Kpegli) surmounts her sexual inexperience by picking up a handsome stranger (Sékouba Doucoure) on a subway platform, on the condition that they not speak to each other except by hand-written notes, for an idyllic month-long cohabitation. Meanwhile, Salma is inexplicably wounded by Christ-like stigmata, leading her to a fateful, apocalyptic confrontation with a born-again Christian skinhead (Matthieu Longatte).

Buy a ticket so these guerilla artists can get paid and make more movies!

Film website:

Z Daleka Widok Jest Piekny | It Looks Pretty From A Distance – New Directors/New Films


Z Daleka Widok Jest Piekny | It Looks Pretty From A Distance
Writer/Directors: Anka and Wilhelm Sasnal
Cast: Marlin Czarnik, Agnieszka Podsiadlik, Piotr Nowak, Elzbieta Okupska
Poland, 2011

28 March 2012, Walter Reade Theater, NYC

A woman walks on a road, with blood on her hands, away from a car with an open door.

“This is a difficult, irritating and unsettling film, which is exactly how it was supposed to be. It should not be ignored.” – Zdzisław Pietrasik

Paweł, a scrap metal guy, wants to live with his girlfriend but there’s bad blood between him and the community. When he leaves unexpectedly after carting off a demented mother who has peed the rug too often, everybody in the village loots his house of valuables and burns the rest in a bonfire.

Sit close to this film, full of beautifully composed images of rich farmland occupied by miserable people.

Film website: