The below needs no comment from me so I’ll simply provide some background:
Subject: Powell Shale Digest “Peer Review”
Dear President Dickerson and Trustees,
I was forwarded the following email earlier. As you can see, Mr. Powell has published a “peer review” by someone whom he refers to as an environmental scientist. In actual fact, this “scientist’s” name is Jeff Bowman and he has neither a doctorate degree nor an undergraduate degree in Engineering. He is a blogger with an obscure blog called the “Wacky World of Waste.”
Mr. Bowman’s “peer review” of our document consists of various blog posts over the past few weeks, the first of which (post #20) begins with the admission “let me be clear on this upfront. I don’t know nothin’ about air dispersion modeling. Math makes my head hurt.” It is curious that this beginning did not alert industry to possible credibility problems but apparently it did not. Mr. Bowman goes on(post #24) to offer us equally credible statements such as “Holy poor science, Batman. The data for carbon disulfide is invalid” and “Holy bias, Batman. Plot 1 values are statistically invalid!”
I think we can all agree that references to Batman coupled with the admission “I don’t know nothin” about air dispersion modeling” are enough to end this conversation. Certainly they do not give one a sense of professionalism or a high degree of confidence in such a “peer review.” Nor is Mr. Bowman truly a peer; his qualifications are much too pedestrian.
If this is the finest that industry can offer in rebuttal to our report, then I believe that this discussion is over.
It is curious, however, that neither Mr. Powell nor his “environmental scientist” address the fact that the second of our two models is based on carbonyl sulfide data collected in an industry study. The absence of any mention of this is conspicuous to a fault. And yet based on industry’s own data, the plume traveled out in excess of a mile. Either industry stands behind its data or they do not.
In addition, I have included the response to me from Ms. Taylor of TCEQ together with the entire email thread. As you will see I was correct in the number of inspectors. Please note that inspections are based on risk which is based on whether they have received complaints.
Here’s a little video of Gene.