A key driving force initiating Unearthed in January 2011 was the need to address the paucity of information surrounding the proposed plans to explore the Karoo and broader regions for natural gas. Generally speaking, a lack of transparency from those pursuing gas development; poor communication from Government and limited research in the media left the public poorly informed, if, at all. As a result, interested and affected parties have been unable to access the necessary facts to stimulate and participate in productive discussion about the risks and benefits in exploring and, possibly producing, the country’s potential shale gas resources.
In seeking to remedy this, Unearthed has worked tirelessly over the past eight months to uncover the facts and examine all the various angles. The project is dedicated to an accurate, comprehensive study into the matter and, in doing so, providing a level-headed, informed voice in the various debates on natural gas, its development and potential use in South Africa’s energy future. During this investigation, Unearthed was privileged to spend five weeks on an intense fact-finding itinerary in the states of Colorado, Texas, Pennsylvania and New York.
On returning from the United States, armed with fresh, fine-tuned information and firsthand experience of gas development and the procedure of hydraulic fracturing, Unearthed is in an advanced position to further its commitment to empower the citizens of South Africa – whether residents in the Karoo, industry members or decision makers in government – with the results of a thorough, impartial investigation.
Unearthed is currently in its closing stages; one or two final interviews and trips to areas outlined for gas exploration followed by an intense round of editing and post-production. During the interim prior to release, as part of our commitment to disseminate information, please feel free to contact Unearthed if you have any queries – firstly, on the project itself but also, on the matter of shale gas development at large. Unearthed director, Jolynn Minnaar, has presented her findings at various meetings in South Africa and has aided numerous journalists, academic researchers and interested persons in investigating the array of complex issues surrounding the production of natural gas, both abroad and locally. Please address any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
An update to this article available here