Groups Involved in Advocacy

Before large-scale groups emerged, anti-fracking advocacy started with like-minded individuals joining together to fight locally. These grassroots movements-- “movement[s] that develop[ed] organically at a local level before spreading throughout the state and even the country-- helped spread the anti-fracking message across the country” (Manuel, 2015). In New York, for example, grassroots groups such as “United for Action” based in New York City and citizens of Dryden, NY, rallied their neighbors and friends to fight for the cause in their hometowns (Weltman, 2015). All of these groups had the same goal, to stop fracking in New York.

When small grassroots organizations gain traction, the next step is to merge these groups into coalitions. In New York, for example, grassroots groups such as the “Hispanic Community of Great Neck” and “Concerned Citizens of Montauk” joined more than 250 other organizations to form “New Yorkers Against Fracking” (New Yorkers Against Fracking, 2012). On June 29, 2015, with the help of these coalitions, the New York Department of Environmental Conservation officially banned fracking in the state after the announcement in 2014 from Governor Andrew Cuomo (NY Department of Environmental Conservation, 2015).

Coalitions against fracking aren’t just prevalent in New York. As the fight against fracking continues throughout the country, more coalitions are forming. “Americans against Fracking” is a national coalition that encompasses 250 environmental groups ranging from well- known organizations such as Greenpeace to small groups like “Alameda County Against Fracking” in California (Americans Against Fracking). Coalitions such as these transform small factions into a unified front to combat fracking. As a result, these groups create a massive movement and can influence government and society overall.

Advocacy groups aren’t just made up of regular citizens. Celebrities have also joined the fight against fracking. A coalition called “Artists Against Fracking” was formed with countless famous members such as Yoko Ono, Mark Ruffalo, and Gwyneth Paltrow (Artists Against Fracking). When celebrities get behind a cause, it makes a huge difference due to their influence in society. Having celebrities support an issue raises public awareness. Just one fracking tweet from Mark Ruffalo will instantaneously reach his 2.01 million followers. Instead of just talking about fracking issues, some organizations boast which famous names back them. These organizations believe celebrities will raise more public support than just using fracking statistics.