I was paid to lie about fracking for six months and I can’t take it anymore.
First and foremost, I must digress. It would give me nothing but satisfaction to unmask the culprits who forced me to lie in the name of profit. Alas, confidentiality contracts were signed and thus, my lips are partially sealed. While I cannot reveal where I worked and certain important details, I would like to drop my name into the populous of worriers.
A key part of the training for my new “career” was promoting and marketing a company with a particular financial interest in fracking and its new miracle fuel, compressed natural gas (CNG).
We were taught sharp responses to any number of questions including environmental and health concerns, which deflected but did not actually satisfy curiosity.
My company was run by an egomaniac. While it was funny at first to hear the occasional telephone argument and watch a coffee mug fly by our faces in anger, we soon defaulted to worry and eventually a forced complacency. Our boss had friends in high places and pissing him off meant a simultaneous career-killer and a verbal beating that was sharp and jagged.
The perks were many. Leaving early when we wanted, liquid lunches, celebrities and high-political figures and a promised future backed by a company “at the forefront of technology.” The fact remained that while we profited using CNG, every one of us knew it was our meal ticket and not a “clean energy” one.
For starters, as the fracking process begins, several hundred diesel-powered trucks are required to transport nearly 7 million gallons of water PER fracking job. Then, several hundred chemicals are shot into the earth including mercury and hydrochloric acid. Yes, the acid that dissolves keys is pounded into the dirt and has even resulted in large spills of 20,000 gallons during mishaps. All the while, methane gas is released due to the pressure and spread out, contaminating groundwater.
This “clean” energy simply isn’t so. And worse than that, people are paid every day to lie about these facts or stretch the truth to keep the dollars stacking and create a market share.
Ever wonder why Amazon sells books so cheap? They would rather lose profit to maintain a monopoly. It’s simple business. Now, companies like Clean Energy Fuels are sponsored by politicians for mutual gains. Natural gas is very “in” right now. It’s sexy and new and best of all, it appeals to us because it’s not a pricey fossil fuel.
After a tumultuous six months of smiling for the cameras and hiding in my apartment all weekend, I was lucky the boss wanted to clean house. He had a new direction for the face of the company and most of us were out. I was never mad about the promises of glory and stock options being a lie, but I did felt used. I think we all did.
I am happy to say this particular company is not doing as well as we hoped. Maybe because his vision was muddled by his own God-complex or perhaps his investors wised up to some of the truths behind his inventory. The point is we have stopped questioning what we don’t know.
Words such as “natural” and “clean” are not what they seem to be. There is no legislation to define how we can and cannot refer to such things.
After all, poison ivy is a plant, but that doesn’t make it a healthy source of iron.