A longtime green advocate, things got personal for Mark Ruffalo when hydraulic fracturing or “hydrofracturing” began to disrupt his hometown in upstate New York’s Sullivan County. Ruffalo educated himself on the complex practice and has been using his fame to call attention to this destructive method of natural gas extraction. The A-list activist, who recently founded Water Defense, even landed himself on a U.S. terror watch list for organizing screenings of a documentary about natural gas drilling.
Ruffalo, who recently dialogued with Deepak Chopra, specifically seeks to fight gas companies’ positive spin about the destructive practice. Last November, he hosted a fracking awareness forum at the University of Albany, where he challenged their claim that the extraction method would bring much-needed work to low-income communities. “You don’t put everyone else in jeopardy just because its going to bring jobs,” he said on the local news, “you don’t bring your daughter to the red light district because you’re having hard times.”