The Fire Next Time

Article excerpt

It's not hard to rage at BP, what with CEO Tony Hayward reminding us almost daily about how the company has bungled the gulf oil spill. What's difficult is to point the finger at ourselves, to look at our own energy-consumption practices and think about how each of us could make tough choices in the short term that would benefit our environment and security in the long term. More difficult still is breaking this tired cycle. We blame Big Oil when energy exploration leads to disaster, then sheepishly go back to our old habits, like Sisyphus towing his boulder with a gas-guzzling pickup only to watch it roll down again.

Some folks think that natural gas, which is plentiful in the United States, is the solution. They might want to take a look at a shabby yet sobering documentary called GasLand (HBO, June 21). Filmmaker Josh Fox is personally vested in the subject: the film begins after he's received a letter from an energy company offering nearly $100,000 for his land in the Delaware River Basin. …