Bloomberg: Public Universities Sell Out to Frackers
by Buck Quigley - posted 3:27 pm, July 23, 2012
The State University of New York at Buffalo is not alone when it comes to spitting out phony research supportive of high-volume horizontal fracking, Bloomberg.com reports today. This time, our local economic engine (formerly known as a legitimate public institution of higher learning) joins current media darlings Penn State and the University of Texas as yet another “school” whose imprimatur is for sale to the highest, er, lowest, er, just about any, bidder. How much longer before these once-respected universities are viewed somewhere along the lines of JD Power & Associates? (No offense to JD Power & Associates—they never claimed to be anything more than a marketing information services firm).
The Bloomberg article references this report, hot off the presses from the Public Accountability Initiative (PAI). You’ll recall PAI unmasked the first study floated out there by UB’s Shale Resources and Society Institute (SRSI) as being inaccurate and falsely promoted as “peer reviewed” when in fact it wasn’t. It’s remarkable the speed with which PAI can spear these hokey studies, but then, it’s kind of like shooting fish in a barrel. Big, slow, blind fish that lay dying in about two inches of water. Using a shotgun.
There is no longer any doubt that the natural gas industry has been and continues working behind the scenes to co-opt public universities and major media outlets in order to gain intellectual credibility before an uninformed public—because industry shills have bragged about doing just that.
The industry’s next local dog and pony show takes place at the Burchfield-Penney Art Center this Thursday (7/26) at 7pm, according to this press release from the Independent Oil and Gas Association of NY (IOGA). There will be a screening of the short propaganda film “Truthland,” which LittleSis showed to have been the brainchild of an astroturf lobbying group and political ad agency. Can you get much truthier than that?
Among the panelists scheduled to attend is Dennis Holbrook (EVP Norse Energy). Holbrook is only now beginning to gain fame as the bigmouth who inadvertently proved that the gas industry works to intentionally mislead politicians and the public about the truth by fooling universities and editorial boards—thanks to a bootleg recording of the pep talk he delivered to industry insiders at a conference last Halloween.
When Norse Energy moved him down to Texas recently after closing the local office, Holbrook had this to say: “What’s bad news for Buffalo is good news for Houston.”
Given recent revelations, it will be interesting to see what kind of welcome this prodigal son receives.