Wicked Problem Project:

Fracking

This project began with the study of the US Fracking industry and its influences. Encountering local stories about the Pennsylvania Marcellus shell fracking, the first approach was Diagramming the system and stakeholders . We discovered the political, corporal and social side-shows involved in the fracking industry. Furthermore, did a research and diagramming on the process and the side effects of fracking.  

Several diagrams system diagrams after, we began to identify areas with possible design intervention. 

I was most intrigued by local residents' livelihoods. Residents living near fracking sites are unprotected by the current and future pollutions caused by fracking. Their livelihood are threatened as soils and water sources are polluted by leaked methane and disposed chemical fluids from the fracking sites. Visible health concerns such as frequent nosebleeds, headaches, and respiratory problems are evident. Yet, hard to medically prove that fracking was the cause of the illness. Thus freeing the gas companies from the responsibility of the ruined lives residents are living. I focused on the physical harms of fracking, the emotional frustrations, and the technical difficulties the residents are living with. And directed my design solution towards projecting the problems in a larger scope and reaching a wide audience to raise awareness.

 

My design solution is an Anti-Expo exhibition. Using World's fair, which exhibits the favorable future of the world, as an antithesis, "Frackalypse," is an exhibition that imagines an apocalyptic world caused by fracking. The exhibition concept displays the physical environmental changes adapting to the methane leaks and chemical pollutions. As well the the catastrophic environmental changes people live with and the methods that they use to survive. Frackalypse exhibition frames the present US fracking phenomenon in a global context and addresses its dangers through a speculative critical design narrative.

 

 


I extended the exploration of future imagined through a Frackalypse into another speculative critical design project:

The Frackalypse Calendar at first sight seems like a mundane digital calendar. But, the detailed content reveals the day-to-day struggles any urban resident experiences when living in a frackalyptic world. Frackalypse occupies one's life with strictly planned schedules and cautionary checkups to maintain a relatively healthy lifestyle. Ironic lifestyle guides such as limiting step tracker illustrates the restrictions caused by the frackalyptic environment.