Once a bustling and productive steel manufacturing town, Youngstown, Ohio, took the decline of the steel industry hard. The shale gas boom in neighboring Pennsylvania has lifted hopes for new jobs and plants in Youngstown, but also threatens to pollute the region. Image by Dimiter Kenarov. United States, 2012. Add this image to a lesson

In the last few years, no other energy topic has managed to garner as much attention and controversy as shale gas. Some have called it “a game changer” and a path to energy independence and economic revival. Others have focused more on the environmental dangers of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking (the technique of extraction), and continued dependence on fossil fuels. The debate over shale gas has now gone global, as Poland considers extraction its hope for breaking its dependency on Russian energy supplies.

On February 12, Middlebury alumnus Dimiter Kenarov ’03, a freelance journalist who recently traveled to both Pennsylvania and Poland, will speak at the Franklin Environmental Center at Middlebury College about the political, environmental, and social costs of shale gas development, as well as the rising global opposition against it. The reporting project was jointly funded by the Pulitzer Center and Calkins Media.

Tuesday, February 12
12:30-1:20 pm

"Shale Gas: From Poland to Pennsylvania"
Middlebury College
The Orchard – Franklin Environmental Center
531 College Street
Middlebury, VT

This event is sponsored by the Pulitzer Center, Middlebury College's Franklin Environmental Center, the Rohatyn Center for Global Affairs, and the Program in Environmental Studies.


Shale gas is an energy phenomenon not just in a broad swath of the United States but in places like eastern Europe, too. In both regions there is a tangled mix of hopes, hype, and concern.


November 24, 2014 /
Steve Sapienza, Jina Moore
More people than ever before are confronting environmental challenges, including climate change. How do journalists explore new angles on these issues?
December 2, 2013 / Untold Stories
Dimiter Kenarov
A year on, Dimiter Kenarov re-examines the shale gas bubble that fueled his investigation into hydraulic fracturing and sustainable energy resources, from Poland to Pennsylvania.