Same song, different verse from Lisa McKenzie,
fractivist assistant research professor at the Colorado School of Public Health, who published yet another study yesterday featuring her anti-fracking rhetoric irrational conclusions. Her work has been discredited here and here. The study used previously-panned data to reach the conclusion that people who live within 500 feet of oil and gas production were at increased risk of cancer.
There’s just one catch – Colorado regulations already require oil and gas production to be more than 500 feet from homes and 1,000 feet from other “high-occupancy” structures like apartments and hospitals. In other words, this study shows that the current regulations are appropriate, which Dr. Larry Wolk from the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment confirmed yesterday, telling the Denver Business Journal:
“This report underscores the potential public health importance of the 500-foot setback and the need to collect more comprehensive air quality data in communities in close proximity to oil and gas operations.”
That’s not good enough for Ms. McKenzie. Her press release notes that:
“The findings indicate that state and federal regulatory policies may not protect the health of populations living near oil and gas facilities. In particular, the risk of negative health effects is significant even at the 500-foot setback between newly-drilled oil and gas wells and existing homes, as required by Colorado’s current regulations.”
That’s simply false. McKenzie actually showed that current regulation is appropriate. Further, McKenzie’s press release also notes that “the study acknowledged substantial uncertainties and the need for more research.” In other words, no conclusions can be drawn from this study. Well, no conclusions, unless you’re Lisa McKenzie, that is.
Just how many lives does McKenzie get before someone pulls the plug on her research?