These stories are an important contribution to the historical record of the ‘fracking’ controversy. Kirsi Jansa is a brilliant example of what one person can do with the technology so many of us now have at our fingertips. Truly an inspiration.

-Professor Bill Gentile, The Backpack Journalist LLC, Washington DC

Your work is profound, hitting home the controversial issues in a direct way that resonates through personal – human interest stories and fact-based presentation.  Our region’s civic discourse will benefit from increasing numbers of people having access to your videos and being able to draw their own more informed conclusions.

– Court Gould, Executive Director, Sustainable Pittsburgh

Gas Rush Stories document the impacts of the Pennsylvania shale gas extraction boom with a rare level of fairness and detail. If we want to have a civil, informed public dialogue about meeting our energy needs, we need more journalism like this.

  1. -Joe Osborne, Legal Director, Group Against Smog and Pollution (GRS, part 15: A Neighbor)

I admit to going into this with some serious reservations, as you never know how things will be edited. I think you did a commendable job in presenting our position in a straight-forward and accurate manner. Thank you.

– Jim Bonner, Executive Director of Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania (GRS, part 12: Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania)

I was honored to be asked to participate in Gas Rush Stories.  Kirsi Jansa and the Gas Rush series provided me with the opportunity to inform a wider audience of the risks associated with the natural gas industry and to let those who may be experiencing the same issues as my family know that they are not alone.  Gas Rush Stories takes a personal in-depth look at the role the gas industry plays in our everyday lives.

– Pam Judy, Carmichaels, PA (GRS, part 5: A Neighbor)

Gas Rush Stories provide first-hand reports and powerful images of energy development. The personal experiences and on-the ground facts presented by Gash Rush Stories are invaluable; they communicate the impacts of energy production and the questions that need to be answered by our society and our elected officials and regulators like nothing else can.

– Amy Mall,  senior policy analyst, Natural Resources Defense Council

As gas harvesting increases continue to sweep through the region, documentary such as

Gas Rush Stories provide a gathering place for dialogue and thoughtful consideration.

Current changes in the industry are producing outcomes that will far exceed our lifetimes. I

would urge a continuance of Gas Rush Stories and its efforts to keep the dialogue open, and

with an eye for both the path at our feet, and what may lay in the hills beyond our view.

  1. -Monica Colberg, director, WE Hands-On Education, green arts and


The Gas Rush Stories series, with its intimate portraits of rural Pennsylvania landowners, provides a valuable insight into the way fracking affects the land and the lifestyle of our citizens.  While fracking is often portrayed in the media as an economic boon, Kirsi Jansa’s series serves to remind us of the long term environmental and cultural costs of a resource extraction industry that will inevitably leave as quickly as it came.

It has been my pleasure to work with her as an editor for some of her text, and I greatly valued the opportunity to contribute to this project.

– Dr. Sarah Flanders, Pittsburgh

It was great to have you in to speak to my documentary students at Point Park a few weeks back. The students learned a few tricks of the trade as you related your experiences in backpack journalism to the class. The Gas Rush Stories episodes that you screened made a big impression. I am not sure what level of awareness some of these twenty somethings have on certain topics, but I heard afterward that An Accidental Fractivist was an eye opener.

I feel it is important for young filmmakers to see an example of the impact that can be made on a local level though an honest exploration of a topic that is affecting our community. You are a skilled storyteller and that is apparent in the work. Thanks for sharing this with my class.

– John Rice, Senior Teaching Artist, Point Park University

GRS’s voice is calm and measured. On a topic that constantly raises temperatures,  GRS

allows me to understand the perspectives of real people who have real experiences with gas


– Brian Cohen, Photographer, Pittsburgh

I was very lucky to work with Kirsi Jansa on Gas Rush Stories episodes 6, 7 and 11 as a second camera operator, editor & sound mixer. While working with Kirsi, I was able to learn about some of her research methods and observe her highly developed skills in interviewing people. I was continually impressed by her persistence in pursuing her subjects and her striving to maintain a unbiased perspective on a very controversial subject.

-Tanya Stadelmann, Filmmaker, Buffalo, NY

One of the more compelling aspects of the Marcellus drilling controversy is how it has forced so many small town southwestern Pennsylvanians to face some of the same difficult choices that their ancestors encountered. Namely, whether, and to what degree, to embrace technology and industrialization–coal mining and oil drilling in the old days, fracking now. The best of Kirsi Jansa’s Gas Rush Stories opens a sympathetic window onto an often overlooked rural culture at the fringes of Pittsburgh’s metropolitan area, and tells the stories of people engaged in a universal struggle to coexist with the outside world and inevitable change.

– Chris Zurawsky, Board Member, Squirrel Hill Urban Coalition, Pittsburgh

Jansa’s video series is a timely and important addition to Shale Reporter, which shares with this filmmaker a journalistic mission to report the human impact of Marcellus gas drilling.

– Keith Briscoe, a senior editor, Shale Reporter / Calkins Media

Kirsi Jansa’s Gas Rush Stories have provided me with perspective. The European approach to energy solutions when compared to the American approach is so much more enlightened, democratic and consistent with the pursuit of the “Common Good”.  I commend Kirsi for caring enough to share with America, “The whole truth and nothing but the Truth”.

– Reverend William C. Thwing,  Johnstown, PA

Gas Rush Stories  are great, short investigative films providing a window into realities of fracking. I love watching these and feeling like I am *there* with the filmmaker.

– J.J. Brown, Author

“So this is nothing new to students of America’s energy dilemma, although fiction and non-fiction films – most notably GaslandPromised Land, and Frack Nation – reinforce themes of bad guys and good guys in the industry or the movement that is trying to stop it. And then there’s the work of Kirsi Jansa, an independent journalist with a neutral eye and even hand who has created Gas Rush Stories, a series of short films highlighting the perspectives of different stakeholders in Pennsylvania shale gas development.

I find Jansa’s work to be a fair attempt to get answers without building a case for or against the industry, and very different from partisan films such as Gasland and Frack Nation that have gained far more publicity.  Jansa asks relevant questions and faithfully documents the answers. —  Jansa’s minimalist style lets her sources do the talking while offering viewers little in the way of rhetorical lines with which to connect the informational dots. But her work does raise provoking questions, at least in my mind. “

“As I have stated in previous posts, I take no side on the merits and risks of shale gas development. But I am all for transparency and full disclosure and I approach the concentration of wealth and power with healthy skepticism. That’s an old-school journalistic ambition that is well served by the work of people like Jansa.”

– Journalist and Author Tom Wilber in his blog Why the fracking waste problem defies a simple answer Recycling sounds good, but what does it really mean?