FrackNation - Sparks sure to fly at McAleer/Tillman debate

Los Angeles 10-22-2014

SPARKS are set to fly with a debate about fracking between a veteran filmmaker and journalist and a vocal anti-fracking activist in Dallas.

The no doubt heated debate between Phelim McAleer and Calvin Tillman comes after McAleer has released a documentary and a video questioning key facts behind Tillman's activism.

The debate is set to start at 7pm at the Brookhaven College Geotechnology Institute in Dallas on Monday Oct 27th. It comes at a crucial time, as the nearby town of Denton prepares to vote on whether to ban fracking - the first such vote in the state.

Phelim McAleer – a veteran journalist who directed and produced FrackNation, a documentary investigating many anti-fracking claims– said he was looking forward to exposing the truth about fracking and exposing those who are now making a lucrative living peddling misinformation that a number of courts have found to be fraudulent.

“After we exposed Calvin Tillman, he issued the challenge for a debate (rather than address the serious matters raised about the fraudulent findings). Then he tried to back out – breaking promises to pay for return airfares, changing venues etc – hoping I would walk away - but I'm not going to let him get away with peddling misinformation. I'm really looking forward to bringing the truth to Dallas and to those who still believe the frauds being promoted by Tillman.”

Calvin Tillman is the former Mayor of Dish, Texas who featured in the anti-fracking documentaries Gasland and Gasland II claiming that fracking had polluted his town, had made his children ill and could lead to cancer.

Phelim McAleer's investigations have revealed that the “evidence” touted by Tillman to push his anti-fracking campaign was gathered by a fraudster who had made up her qualifications.

Several courts found Tillman based all his very dramatic claims on one air study carried by Alisa Rich. Rich, the sole proprietor of Wolf Eagle Environmental Engineers and Consultants LLC.

However, these judges found that Alisa Rich:

1) fraudulently claimed to have a PhD

2) fraudulently claimed to be a qualified engineer

3) and in a separate case, she has arranged and filmed a fraudulent video to try and extort a company to settle a damages claim

McAleer – who has worked as a crime reporter and investigative journalist in several countries including Ireland, Romania, Vietnam, Madagascar and Indonesia – said he is looking forward to revealing the truth behind much of the anti-fracking activism.

“These are well-funded campaigns based on fraud, exaggerations and lucrative lawsuits. Mostly they scare people and often children, but have no basis in reality. I want to expose these people who think nothing of scaring children to push an agenda. It's despicable and I look forward to exposing it to the world.”

“I urge everyone to join me in Dallas on Monday to add their questions to a growing list that Calvin Tillman refuses to address.”

The debate which is open to the public will take place between 7pm-8:30pm at

Brookhaven College Geotechnology Institute

Building H, Room H114

3939 Valley View Lane

Farmers Branch, Dallas, TX 75244-4997


Phelim McAleer is a filmmaker and investigative journalist. He most recently produced and directed FrackNation - a documentary to uncover the truth about Fracking. He has produced documentaries for CBC (Canada) and RTE (Ireland) and two independent feature length documentaries. Before becoming a filmmaker, Phelim was a foreign correspondent for the Financial Times in Eastern Europe. He also covered Romania and Bulgaria for The Economist. Before that he covered Ireland for the UK Sunday Times. He has worked as a filmmaker and journalist in many countries including Romania, Uganda, Madagascar, Bulgaria, Chile, Indonesia, Canada and China. McAleer has appeared on or is a regular contributor to an array of international media organizations including Fox News, CNN and the BBC. He has been interviewed on over 100 US and international radio shows.

FrackNation was acquired by and premiered on AXS TV, owned by a maverick billionaire Mark Cuban. It was subsequently picked up for distribution by Magnolia Pictures and is now available on Netflix, Amazon, iTunes and VOD. The movie was financed through the crowdfunding website Kickstarter. It raised $212,000 in 60 days and was one of the most successful documentary campaigns ever funded through Kickstarter.
The New York Times described FrackNation as "provocative and meticulously researched."