Review Of Controversial Fracking Study Finds Conflict Of Interest


Is or isn’t fracking bad for the environment and for people? That is a question that has become central to many communities where fracking has become commonplace. One of the most controversial fracking studies has now come under fire after a peer review revealed that the author sat on the board of a drilling company, and had collected over $1.5 million in compensation.

The original report was authored by Dr. Charles “Chip” Groat, who was employed by UT Austin’s Energy Institute. The report, entitled “Fact-Based Regulation for Environmental Protection in the Shale Gas Development”, claimed that there was no evidence linking fracking with water contamination.

But the Public Accountability Initivative revealed Dr. Groat was sitting on the board of directors for the Plains Exploration & Production company, which is heavily invested in fracking, at the time he authored the study. He has been compensated $1.5 million for his work, and failed to disclose that he sat on the board in the report. While Groat claims his role in writing the report is small, the scandal was enough to seriously damage the reports credibility.

While Groat claims his position did not influence the report, it is a small wonder why the disclosure wasn’t included in the report. The dishonesty of this report had put a big dent into pro-fracking politics, which commissioned this report specifically to counter other reports that showed fracking not only contaminates ground water, but has been linked to earthquakes and flammable tap water as well.

It’s getting harder and harder to figure out who to trust these days, eh?

Source: State Impact

About the Author

A writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs, can be found wrenching or writing- or else, he’s running, because he’s one of those crazy people who gets enjoyment from running insane distances.

  • dztrucktion

    I hope that this isn’t a surprise to anyone…

    The US is set to become the Saudi Arabia of Natural Gas – there is a ton of money to be made here folks. Why wouldn’t they set the table with “Fracking is Safe”

  • No surprise to me, either, dz. America is chock full of “think tanks” – organizations which are paid huge amounts of money to issue reports, position papers and studies that support the political and/or economic positions of those paying the bills.

    Their job is to provide fodder for the main stream media – whether it’s FauxNews or the New York Times – so that the people who read this garbage have their opinions shaped accordingly. There is an old joke: Q – How do you tell if a politician is lying? A – His lips are moving. The same can be said for every spokesperson for every special interest group. All of them depend on their benefactors for their pay checks and none is going to do anything to stop the flow of dollars into his or her bank account.

    The people who wrote the Constitution assumed an independent and often adversarial press would keep government honest. What a quaint notion that seems, in light of today’s experience.

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