A similar paper by the same author was retracted last year by another journal.
Both papers focused on the “chemtrails” emitted from jet planes, which conspiracy theorists have long believed contain toxic coal fly ash rather than harmless ice crystals, as the government claims. According to a press release about the 2016 paper, released by author J. Marvin Herndon, a geophysicist and “independent researcher” at the Transdyne Corporation in San Diego, California, the paper presents evidence the chemtrails contain coal fly ash, linked to a number of health problems.
Here’s the EOC, published today by Frontiers in Public Health:
An expression of concern on
Human and Environmental Dangers Posed by Ongoing Global Tropospheric Aerosolized Particulates for Weather Modification
by Herndon, J.M. (2016). Front. Public Health 4:139. doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2016.00139
With this notice, Frontiers states its awareness of several complaints and serious allegations surrounding the article “Human and Environmental Dangers Posed by Ongoing Global Tropospheric Aerosolized Particulates for Weather Modification” published on 30 June 2016. Our Chief Editors, Joav Merrick and Anwar Huq, will direct an investigation in full accordance with our complaints procedures. The situation will be updated as soon as the investigation is complete.
In the paper, published June 30, the author writes:
The ability of coal fly ash to release heavy metals and radioactive elements upon exposure to body moisture has potentially grave human health implications including cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory diseases, reduced male fertility, and stroke.
The time has come for the scientific community and especially the environmental science and public health communities to understand that a multiplicity of toxic substances is being sprayed into the air breathed by people in many parts of the world and that it will adversely affect virtually all life on Earth.
On his blog, Beall points out that the new study is a similar to the one retracted by the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (a journal published by MDPI) in 2015. The retraction notice for that paper cites some errors with the science, and notes that the “language of the paper is often not sufficiently scientifically objective:”
A Frontiers spokesperson referred us to the EOC.
Herndon rejected his previous retraction, writing in 2015:
…there is no demonstrated legitimate basis for MDPI AG to have retracted said article; MDPI AG should promptly republish it with the author’s corrections…
We’ve reached out to Herndon, and will update the post with anything else we learn.
Update 7/18/16 11:50 a.m. ET: Please see an update on this post.
Like Retraction Watch? Consider making a tax-deductible contribution to support our growth. You can also follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, add us to your RSS reader, sign up on our homepage for an email every time there’s a new post, or subscribe to our new daily digest. Click here to review our Comments Policy. For a sneak peek at what we’re working on, click here.