About CommForge2

CommForge2 is the course website for LAIS423/523, Advanced Science Communication, at the Colorado School of Mines. From here, you can link to student sci-tech blogs, read about the course, and comment on current events and stories. Welcome!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Street Science, Meet Fracking

Andy Revkin has a good post up today over at the fabulous Dot Earth blog about how citizens are creating tools to gather data about hydrofracturing efforts across the nation.  In my mind, this is something akin to the "street science" efforts Corburn talks about in his book Street Science:  Community Knowledge and Environmental Health Justice (though the focus is not always on public health, and the "community" is writ large in this case).  Regardless of how you feel about shale gas exploration and extraction, I think we can agree that, in a democracy, it's pretty neat to see citizens involved in the production of scientific and technical data, engaged in important debates about environmental health and safety, and raising the stakes in terms of improving discourse on this controversial subject.  This can only be good for democracy.

Such efforts, argues Revkin, are proving increasingly important:

"Given that government resources for environmental regulation (and just about everything else) will be constrained for a long time to come, I’ve been enthusiastic about efforts by the public to take a D.I.Y. (do it yourself) role in tracking pollution or resource issues, whether on the ground or online."

1 comment:

  1. Another cool street science project is USGS's "Did you feel it?" If you feel an earthquake you can go online and report how severe the shaking and damage was in your area. This assists the USGS by having more information for their hazard maps. http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/dyfi/