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RuPaul Has a Fracking Empire on His Wyoming Ranch

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Picture: Getty

As if we wanted any extra proof that the world is a psychedelic hellscape, RuPaul—yeah, that RuPaul— and his husband are being profitable off the fracking trade. Sure, sure, this appears like a wild conspiracy concept. However we’ve bought the receipts.

RuPaul’s a giant fan of getting that coin. In 30 years, they went from struggling artist to a family title. Now, because the host of the wildly in style TV drag competitors RuPaul’s Drag Race, he’s a family title and has amassed a web value of $60 million. Followers know that RuPaul and his companion Georges LeBar have a large ranch in Wyoming. And in an interview with Terry Gross on NPR’s Contemporary Air, they tell us somewhat extra about what goes on at that ranch.

“Do you have, like, horses or cattle or a farm or…?” Gross asks.

“A modern ranch, 21st century ranch, is really land management,” Charles explains. “You lease the mineral rights to oil companies. And you sell water to oil companies. And you then lease the grazing rights to different ranchers. So it’s land management. Yeah.”

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A little fucking vague, no? Rory Solomon, a PhD candidate at NYU, looked into it after hearing the interview.

“The unfortunate thing is that I was actually really enjoying the segment,” Solomon told Earther in a Twitter direct message. “I was doing dishes while learning about RuPaul’s punk past and was like, ‘wow, RuPaul has had such a cool and interesting path. But then it got to the last 5 minutes, and he dropped that line about selling mineral rights and Terry Gross didn’t follow up! So I had to do a little research.”

Solomon found Ru’s ranch was a fracking hot spot, according to the nonprofit group FracTracker. Earther dug additional, checking public information of the couple’s ranch.

We discovered that Ru’s companion, Australian rancher Georges LeBar, owns seven parcels of land in Wyoming totaling some 66,000 acres. LeBar’s firm, Le Bar Ranch, leases that land to at the least three oil corporations: Anadarko E&P Onshore, Chesapeake Working, and Anschutz Oil Firm. Utilizing FracTracker, we checked out simply 10,000 of these acres and located greater than 35 active oil and gas wells.

All oil and fuel drilling is unhealthy, nevertheless it’s value mentioning that each one three of those corporations are main gamers within the fracking industry. Chesapeake Vitality was a pioneer of the drilling methodology, and it’s the second most energetic drilling company in the nation. It’s carefully adopted by Anadarko. And Anschutz isn’t any mom-and-pop store both—its proprietor, Philip Frederick Anschutz, made billions from fossil gas extraction that earned him the 41st spot on the Forbes 400.

“I do know RuPaul has been a very inspirational determine for lots of queer folks, and has impressed many to interact in transgressive gender efficiency, however past enhancing the illustration of marginalized people in popular culture, it’s essential to acknowledge that these celebrities hardly ever embody our broader political aspirations,” Solomon mentioned.

Actually, does RuPaul not know in regards to the years-long marketing campaign to finish fracking, a follow of drilling for oil and fuel that’s well-known that emits methane, a greenhouse fuel that’s 84 occasions extra climate-warming than carbon? Does he not know that the method emits poisonous air pollution which may trigger cardiovascular and respiratory disease? Analysis additionally shows that poor folks and folks of shade usually tend to be compelled to take care of hydraulic fracturing of their group, and due to this fact disproportionately undergo the well being downside it causes.

I’m going to be trustworthy: I don’t watch DragRace, however mad persons are dropping their minds over this.

And actually, people ought to be dropping it. RuPaul hosted a climate crisis-themed ball in 2018. Inexperienced New Deal queen Consultant Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez—who, as a result of life isn’t bizarre sufficient, simply launched federal legislation to ban fracking final month—is set to be a guest host on his present this season. That makes this entire profiting-from-oil-companies factor worse and means weirder.

We’ve reached out to RuPaul and LeBar for remark and can replace this in the event that they reply.

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