“We are dealing with an insurgency” – Matt Carmichael, the manager of external affairs for Anadarko Petroleum referring to negative publicity [November, 2011, oil industry conference at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Houston]

Is the Chris Watts case a PR boon or bust for the fracking industry in Colorado? How about Watts’ co-worker at Anadarko Petroleum Corp., Nichol Kessinger?

We’ve made some passing references to the Firestone Incident, Proposition 112 at TCRS thus far, and the surprising speed at which this criminal case was investigated, concluded and the legal detritus swept away.

It may be worth taking a closer look at how the fracking industry deal with negative publicity in general, and Anadarko’s approach in particular. The source for this story is CNBC:

Fullscreen capture 20190309 014230Fullscreen capture 20190309 014837

Fullscreen capture 20190309 014827

How this information came about is that an environmental activist [an anti-fracking campaigner] managed to attend to conference and recorded Carmichael’s comments during a session titled “Designing a Media Relations Strategy To Overcome Concerns Surrounding Hydraulic Fracturing,” which she flagged as the most contentious and militant, and passed along her audio files to CNBC.

The activist, Sharon Wilson, is the director of the Oil & Gas Accountability Project for the nonprofit environmental group Earthworks. She said she paid full price to attend the two day event, and wore a nametag identifying her organization as she recorded the conference.

In the audio, Carmichael can also be heard recommending a course at Harvard and MIT called “Dealing with an Angry Public,” and recommending this as a companion study guide to the US Army and Marine Corps counterinsurgency manual. The CBI references in the MIT guide isn’t the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, but a group known as the Consensus Building Institute.

s-l1600

When asked for comment on Carmichael’s insurgency remarks, a spokesman  for industry group Energy in Depth dismissed them as “a joke”.

For additional background on the status of fracking at Anadarko in 2011, when the above comments were made, read this report with Carmichael’s name on it.

Fullscreen capture 20190309 021053

1155968404_1265348017001_vs-1265332840001

More: Meet the Insurgents on the Front Line of America’s Fracking War – Vice

11 thoughts on ““We are dealing with an insurgency” – Matt Carmichael, the manager of external affairs for Anadarko Petroleum referring to negative publicity [November, 2011, oil industry conference at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Houston]

  1. On the Town of Frederick FB page the day they were looking for the bodies, a couple of retired Weld County oil workers speculated that if the bodies were disposed of in something they called the “rat hole” they would be impossible to find. They said they’re old abandoned drill sites and the openings are significantly bigger, maybe 2 feet in diameter. He said all the field workers are aware of where they’re located, and the sludge in the bottom of these deep holes in the ground are filled with toxic waste that eventually dissolves anything they would throw in there. He said the guys all used to throw anything in they didn’t want to carry out of the field, tools, trash, etc. and it simply disappears. I think this is something Anadarko doesn’t want the “insurgents” to know.

    Like

    • “if the bodies were disposed of in something they called the “rat hole” they would be impossible to find. They said they’re old abandoned drill sites and the openings are significantly bigger, maybe 2 feet in diameter. He said all the field workers are aware of where they’re located, and the sludge in the bottom of these deep holes in the ground are filled with toxic waste that eventually dissolves anything they would throw in there.”

      Ew – gross!! Could CW have planned to return and stuff SW’s body down one of these?

      We really need more funding for the EPA!

      Like

      • ikr? Those 2 old men bantering back and forth was kinda entertaining. Sounded like it could be a real possibility before the bodies were recovered. I don’t think there was any mention of “rat holes” around the Cervi site though, but it must have crossed his mind if he knew where they were located.

        Also, note to self, never drink well water or tap water in eastern CO.

        Like

        • “Also, note to self, never drink well water or tap water in eastern CO.”

          It’s terrifying to think about, isn’t it? The oil companies do these things so blithely, for their own convenience, to make as much money as possible, without the slightest thought about the destruction they’re leaving in their wake, and how long the effects of their greed and selfishness are going to last or how many people will be affected. But yay capitalism and profits, right?

          Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.