UPDATE (7:00 pm ET, 2/29/2016): Following calls by the US Chamber of Commerce and Ohio State Rep. Andy Thompson for the University of Cincinnati (UC) to release its full findings from its groundwater study finding no water contamination from fracking, the Ohio Chamber of Commerce has now weighed in explaining,
“Taxpayers also helped fund the U.C. study. State law, and common sense, says that if tax dollars were used to conduct this type of research, the results must be made public. Several legislators, businesses, and groups that support safe and economic oil and gas drilling are calling out U.C. to release the full report. We hope they listen. This way residents in these areas of Ohio can feel safe knowing their water is not being harmed and can continue to freely enjoy the benefits of shale development in their communities.”
—Original post, February 26, 2016—
This week, the US Chamber of Commerce and Ohio State Representative Andy Thompson called on the University of Cincinnati (UC) Department of Geology to release the full findings of its groundwater study, which found no contamination from hydraulic fracturing. This call comes after EID published a video, which highlights comments by the lead author of the study explaining, “There was no significant change in methane concentration over time, even as more and more natural gas wells were drilled in the area.”
The study was funded by taxpayers as well as activists groups, who were left “disappointed” that the researchers found – after three years and 191 water samples – that the water contamination in Ohio wells “clearly did not have a natural gas source.”
To date, the study’s findings have only been made available at a public meeting hosted by an anti-fracking group, Carroll County Concerned Citizens, despite the fact that UC has been very forthcoming with the public about the fact that they’ve been studying fracking over the past few years.
As the US Chamber said this week,
“The University of Cincinnati should hold up its end and add to the public’s knowledge of hydraulic fracturing’s safety. With so much misinformation being pushed by hydraulic fracturing opponents, a short presentation in front of a few people in southeast of Canton, Ohio doesn’t cut it.” (emphasis added)
State Representative Any Thompson pointed out in a recent interview:
“It is unacceptable that taxpayers have funded this important groundwater study and the findings are now being kept from the public. UC has still not produced a full report of their findings, nor has the university issued a press release of their results. Yet, during the course of the past few years, the university has released countless advisories on the multi-year Groundwater Research of Ohio study. I am calling on the University of Cincinnati Department of Geology to release their full findings surrounding this study immediately. The people of Ohio have funded and deserve to know that private water wells in shale counties have not been impacted.” (emphasis added)
Elected officials and the US Chamber are not the only ones calling for its release. Since EID published its video of the findings, some articles have produced headlines like this: “Shame on the University of Cincinnati.”
The public deserves to know the positive results of the study so why aren’t the researchers making their findings available?