The authors of two environmental papers, including one about the effects of fracking on human health, have retracted them after discovering crucial mistakes.
One of the studies reported an increased level of air pollution near gas extraction sites, and the other suggested that 2010’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico contributed to air contamination.
According to the corresponding author of both papers, Kim Anderson at Oregon State University, the journal plans to publish new versions of both papers in the next few days. In the case of the fracking paper, the conclusions have been reversed — the original paper stated pollution levels exceeded limits set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for lifetime cancer risk, but the corrected data set the risks below EPA levels.
The fracking paper received some media attention when it was released, as it tapped into long-standing concerns about the environmental dangers of hydraulic fracturing (fracking), which extracts natural gas from the earth. A press release that accompanied the paper quoted Anderson as warning: Continue reading Authors retract study that found pollution near fracking sites
Note: We are reprinting below an article originally published at InsideClimate News.
The inspector general of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has been asked to examine whether a significant recent study of greenhouse gas emissions from oil and gas fields was technically flawed—and whether researchers brushed aside concerns that methane pollution was being understated.
The emission of methane, a much more potent greenhouse gas in the short term than carbon dioxide, has proven difficult to measure. The latest complaint is a volley in a long-running skirmish among academics, advocacy groups and regulators over how tightly methane should be regulated.
On Wednesday, a North Carolina environmental advocacy group, NC Warn, alleged that this dispute has risen to the level of fraud. Continue reading Environmental group alleges scientific fraud in disputed methane studies
Environmental Science & Technology has issued a correction for a March 2015 paper on methane contamination from gas wells after learning that the authors failed to disclose funding from Chesapeake Energy Corp., a major U.S. energy producer.
The paper, “Methane Concentrations in Water Wells Unrelated to Proximity to Existing Oil and Gas Wells in Northeastern Pennsylvania,” came from a group led by Donald Siegel, of Syracuse University. In the correction, Siegel acknowledges having received “funding privately” from Chesapeake for the study, which found: Continue reading Undisclosed industry funding prompts correction of fracking paper