Fracking Fact or Fiction at Saint Olaf College

frack-diagramFracking is a touchy subject on many college campuses. Many students face anti-fossil fuel bias as they work through the education system. Fracking, which has led to a massive boom in domestic oil and natural gas production, isn’t immune to this bias. CFACT students at Saint Olaf College in Minnesota wanted to combat this anti-fracking bias, so they played a game of Fracking Fact or Fiction on campus.

The collegians had a bunch of statements like, “Fracking has cut our dependence on foreign oil in half since 2005.” If a student correctly guessed whether a statement was fact or fiction (fact in this case) they won a prize. Many students played, and the results were interesting.

A few students even had heard the truth about fracking, like that it doesn’t pollute ground water. “I read the story about the EPA’s study on fracking and ground water,” said one student, “turns out fracking isn’t as bad as a lot of people think.” But these students were unfortunately the minority.

Other students had already made up their minds and didn’t care what the fracking facts were. “Fracking is bad,” said another student, “I don’t care what you say.” A few students took a more moderate tone and had an open mind. While they didn’t like fracking they decided to take a careful look at the facts before jumping to a conclusion.

Fighting bias can be a hard thing, but collegians will never back away from a challenge. CFACT will continue to share the facts about fracking with college students around the country.