UPDATE: Gov. Corbett said today that a DCNR official's comparison of "Gasland" to Nazi propaganda was an "inappropriate analogy." Speaking to reporters at an event in York, Corbett said Ted Borawski's superiors were taking "disciplinary action" against him. Corbett spokesman Kevin Harley did not say what kind of action was being taken, but added that they did so prior to Shapiro's email.
A public comment by a Corbett administration official comparing a documentary on shale drilling to Nazi propaganda has touched off criticism by a member of the state House.
Ted Borawski, chief oil and gas geologist with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, told a group of insurance underwriters in Lancaster County last week that "Joseph Goebbels would be proud" of the Oscar-nominated film "Gasland," which explores the environmental impacts of natural gas drilling.
Borawski went on to say the filmmaker Josh Fox would have received the "Nazi Award" for his "beautiful piece of propaganda," according to the Lancaster Intelligencer Journal.
The remarks stunned Rep. Josh Shapiro (D., Montgomery), who fired off an email yesterday to Gov. Corbett's policy chief Annmarie Kaiser seeking an apology.
"While I recognize there may be differing opinions of that documentary, there is absolutely no place in society--let alone in the Corbett Administration--for such insensitive and ignorant rhetoric," Shapiro wrote. "I don't know Mr. Borawski or his relationship to the new Governor, but as a member of the state House, I ask that the Governor immediately condemn Mr. Borawski's comment and take appropriate action against him. There is plently of room in the public discourse for people to disagree, but there is no room for a senior government official to compare someone to a Nazi just because they have different views."