Is Big Oil & Gas Just Like Big Tobacco?

MDN has observed that for weeks now news outlets have recycled the same story with variations on a common theme: Some university studies that have produced reports “favorable” to the drilling industry were partially funded by the drilling industry, or at some point a researcher worked for the industry, and that calls into question the findings of said studies. The latest example is on display in the left-leaning Buffalo News.

MDN is disturbed. Not because the energy industry—which by the way keeps your lights on, keeps your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer, keeps relatively cheap gas in your automobile’s tank, and has helped create the most prosperous country on earth—helps fund some of these scientific studies (who else will pay to defend them?). No, we’re disturbed because the same media so wholly devoted to picking apart anything to do with fossil fuels, willfully and (we would say) criminally ignores the other side of this debate.

Let us explain with a few examples from the latest Bloomberg article:

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PA DEP Sec. Michael Krancer Takes the Gloves Off

When you’re effective at your job and your enemies don’t like it, they call you mean. Case in point: Michael Krancer, Secretary of the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP). He’s very effective in his job as the state’s top regulator of oil and gas drilling. And anti-drillers just hate him.

The Philadelphia Inquirer published a story yesterday outlining just how mean he is (no doubt a badge of honor for Mr. Krancer). The story starts this way:

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NYT Columnist Says NatGas OK for Now, But Not for Long-Term

Thomas L. Friedman, columnist for The New York Times, penned a column for Sunday’s edition titled, “Get it Right on Gas.” It is an instructive column and is perhaps the best example yet of the things MDN has been saying (yelling, screaming) for the past two years: Those who oppose drilling do so because of their opposition to all fossil fuels and their embrace of a mythical alternative energy nirvana future.

Here’s a sampling:

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