Scientists are applauding the academic journal Frontiers in Energy Research for launching an investigation after the Boston Globe revealed the authors of a study it published failed to disclose funding they received from the methane gas industry. The study endorsed the adoption of so-called “green hydrogen” for heating buildings — a position the American Gas Association promotes and that many scientists caution is not feasible and delays the adoption of effective climate solutions.
The Globe investigation revealed several authors listed on the study failed to acknowledge a gas industry-aligned lobbyist helped draft the study’s conclusions and recommendations. They also failed to acknowledge that funding for the study was directly solicited from methane gas and pipeline industry members of the Associated Industries of Massachusetts. “This is the appropriate action for the journal to take,” said Robert Howarth, a Cornell professor who has published research on hydrogen and who has been editor in chief of three scientific journals. “They need to see if things were done incorrectly or wrongly.” (Boston Globe $)