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Andrew Rosenberg

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About the author: Andrew Rosenberg is the director of the UCS Center for Science and Democracy. He leads UCS's efforts to advance the essential role that science, evidence-based decision making, and constructive debate play in American policy making. See Andrew's full bio.

Fracking and Community Action: Make Your Voice Heard!

with Kate Konschnik, Policy Director, Environmental Law and Policy Program, Harvard Law School

Hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) is unlocking unconventional oil and gas resources and transforming our energy profile. Within the last decade, we have seen a steady uptick in domestic oil and gas production, a dramatic drop in American natural gas prices, and the retirement of old coal plants forced out of the market by more efficient gas-fired energy. We’ve seen oil and gas production in places where it never before existed, and a remarkable scale and intensity of development. Read More

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Fracking and My Community’s Water: What Do We Know or When Will We Know It?

Monika Freyman Manager, Water Program

Ceres, Boston, MA

Controversy concerning the practice of hydraulic fracturing and unconventional oil and gas development is about more than just breaking up underground rock deposits to release gas and oil. The policy discussion is also about the overall risks and benefits of the entire industrial process of development, from exploration and drilling to build-out of infrastructure, land use changes, production, transportation, and the cumulative impacts on communities of the business of extracting fossil fuels from shale deposits. The injection of water, sand, and chemicals deep below ground is clearly part of issue, but so is the fact that drilling is occurring in dense patterns across the landscape in many regions unaccustomed to energy development. Read More

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The House Science Committee and the EPA Fighting Over Data: Is That the Same as Secret Science?

Rep. Lamar Smith, Chairman of the House Science Committee seems to be implying that unless the raw data from two major studies are made available to him and his colleagues, that the science used by the EPA in crafting some air quality regulations is secret.  The Center for Science and Democracy at UCS was formed to advance the role of science and scientific evidence in public policy.  So should we be supporting Chairman Smith’s demand, which he has backed up by a subpoena? Read More

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Wolves, the Endangered Species Act, and Why Scientific Integrity Matters

Shark week has come and gone, and as a marine scientist I feel most at home with these top predators, but it is another, equally charismatic predator species that is in the news.  You can guess that because I said “charismatic” I wasn’t referring to Congress. Read More

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Science, Democracy and Fracking: Not All Is As it Seems – a Correction

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the importance of obtaining better information in order to make better choices concerning the impacts of hydraulic fracturing or “fracking.” In fact, the role of science in informing the public, the media, and policy-makers as we make societal choices in our democracy is of enormous importance—not because science is the sole determinant of what choice we should make, but because it must help ground our decisions in what we know about the world we live in. Read More

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Science, Democracy and Fracking: People Have Questions and They Deserve Answers

In late July, the Center for Science and Democracy at the Union of Concerned Scientists, in collaboration with UCLA, held a workshop and public forum on “Science, Democracy and Community Decisions on Fracking”. We organized the forum in response to the exponential growth of hydraulic fracturing for unconventional oil and natural gas that is transforming our energy economy. Read More

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The Science and Democracy Connections of Chemical Safety, Trade Agreements and Money in Politics

Leading the Center for Science and Democracy at UCS gives me a great opportunity to look for connections between events that sometimes may seem separate. Over the past few months I have watched with dismay and sadness as two explosions at large industrial plants tragically took lives and injured workers, nearby residents and first responders. I had an opportunity to visit the west Louisville, KY community of Rubbertown, where industrial facilities are located surrounded by residences. There too, tragedy has struck, as accidents and chronic impacts from the plants have impacted generations of residents. Read More

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In Search of the Federal Role on Fracking

I have been reading and thinking a lot about hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) for oil and gas lately as, here at UCS, we plan for a Science and Democracy Forum to be held this month in Los Angeles. Our forum will explore what we know—and need to know—to inform decisions on fracking. But given that fracking is now a major source of oil and gas production domestically and internationally, as we prepare for the forum, I find myself continually asking, “where is the federal government in all of this?” Read More

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Senator Heinrich, We Couldn’t Have Said It Better—Science and Democracy are Indivisible

Just over a year ago, the Union of Concerned Scientists formed a new Center for Science and Democracy and last summer I was appointed its inaugural director. It is both an honor and a challenge for me, as the Center has the mission of advancing the role of science in public policy and democratic dialogue. Read More

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Corporate Counterfeit Science – Both Wrong and Dangerous

Asbestos can kill you. We’ve all been warned about the dangers of breathing it in. That is why we test buildings for it and have rules to protect construction workers from exposure to it.  But how do we know asbestos is harmful? Because scientists have done studies of the dangers it poses to our health. And I’m glad they have so we can avoid these threats. Read More

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