Thursday, April 28, 2016

Public university admits to burying study finding no damage to water quality from fracking because funders ‘disappointed’ - By Thomas Lifson

A three-year study undertaken by the state-funded University of Cincinnati will not be released to the public, because it found no damage at all.  This direct contradiction of the goals of many environmentalist groups had to be suppressed.  As the lead researcher said:

I am really sad to say this, but some of our funders, the groups that had given us funding in the past, were a little disappointed in our results. They feel that fracking is scary and so they were hoping this data could to a reason to ban it[.]

This is a scandal that goes to the heart of the relationship between science and public policy and the reliability of global warming doomsayers.  The scandal was broken in a small town newspaper, the Free Press-Standard of Carroll County, Ohio and only gradually made its way to the national media via Jeff Stier of the National Center for Public Policy ResearchNewsweek, and Jazz Shaw of Hot Air.

As Stier wrote at Newsweek:
 Geologists at the University of Cincinnati just wrapped up a three-year investigation of hydraulic fracturing and its impact on local water supplies.

As Russell Cook, a citizen-journalist, has detailed, the global warming fraudsters inevitably revert to the charge that scientists who question their theory are in the pocket of the “fossil fuel industry,” a charge based on no substance at all and is actually 180 degrees different from reality.  With billions of dollars annually spent of “global warming research” that hands to governments enormous power to tax and regulate all economic activity (that depends on energy), the gravy train is on the warmist side.  Develop a computer program to explain away the embarrassing failure of data to conform to theiry, and you will be lavished research funds, invited to conferences in exotic locales, and put up at five-star hotels.

We have in Ohio a smoking gun on the repression of one side of the controversy.  I hope that the Ohio State Legislature will conduct an investigation:

Rep. Andy Thompson, R-Marrietta, whose district includes Carroll, Harrison and Belmont counties, is calling for the university to release its findings. Thompson noted the study received state funding in the form of an $85,714 grant from the Ohio Board or Regents and federal funding from the national Science Foundation for an isotope ratio mass spectrometer.

“It is unacceptable that taxpayers have funded this important groundwater study and the findings are being kept from the public,” said Thompson. “UC still has not produced a full report of their findings, nor has the university issued a press release of their results. Yet, during the course of the past few years, the university has released countless advisories on the multi-year Groundwater Research of Ohio study. I am calling on the University of Cincinnati Department of Geology to release their full findings surrounding this study immediately. The people of Ohio have funded and deserve to know that private water wells in shale counties have not been impacted.”
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