Filmmakers wade into fracking controversy as industry focuses on raising efficiency, productivity


Multiple films have addressed the issue of fracking as the practice has come to be used on a growing number of oil and gas wells.

Josh Fox's 2010 release of the documentary "Gasland," which was nominated for an academy award, is often pointed to as one of the events that helped generate the current debate about fracking.

Images of methane-containing water being lit on fire horrified the nation's homeowners and introduced activists to a new cause for which they could fight. However, the film hardly told the whole story, according to another documentary producer named Phelim McAleer.

In fact, Fox has been confronted about factual discrepancies on several occasions by McAleer, who recently screened his film "FrackNation" for a group of lawmakers at an event organized by the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. One of the documentary's main goals seems to have been to discredit Fox's work, although McAleer has said his broader aim is to reveal the truth about fracking, which he says has been clouded by "lies and misinformation."

In a press release promoting the recent screening, the filmmaker asserted it is "important that politicians educate themselves about fracking."

"It's the future of American energy," wrote McAleer.

While these dueling documentarians have continued their feud on- and off-screen, industry stakeholders have remained focused on implementing practical solutions to ensure their oil and gas wells are as safe, efficient and productive as possible.

Modern oil production equipment manufacturers offer a wide range of different options for energy companies that are looking to bolster their bottom line. Artificial lift solutions have become increasingly popular as companies have come to acknowledge their high level of utility. However, this equipment is not appropriate for use in all wells.

Installing jet pumps can help oil and gas producers maintain pumping operations in instances where problems with the well casing preclude the use of artificial lift.