On Shale Gas, Warming and Whiplash – NYTimes.com

7 Jan

Setting aside the fights between environmentalists and industry, the picture emerging in the science is of an initial assertion in an area with inadequate data (largely because of the industry’s proprietary bent) that is — unsurprisingly — being challenged. I encourage you to look back at Gavin Schmidt’s “Fracking Methane” post from last year at Realclimate, which I feel nailed the nuances. I hope he will take a look at the new work, too.

Unfortunately, when research on tough questions sits under the microscope because of its relevancy to policy fights, the impact on the public can be a severe case of whiplash. Journalists and campaigners succumbing to “single-study syndrome” in search of a hot front-page headline or debating point threaten to alienate readers seeking some sense of reality.

via On Shale Gas, Warming and Whiplash – NYTimes.com.

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