javascript:; Busting Sealant Myths: "Flawed" USGS Studies | Coal Tar Free America
 

That old saying that a lie is halfway around the world before the truth gets its boots on has never been truer than with this myth.  Dozens of times industry representatives and scientists have made this claim.  Some have even begun to add colorful modifiers like "grossly flawed" or "seriously flawed."  Maybe they think the longer and louder it is said will make it come true.

Recently I reread this complaint made by industry against the United States Geological Survey (USGS).  If you're new to this issue, the USGS is an independent research unit of the federal government.  They have led several studies about coal tar pavement sealant pollution.  The complaint was made about a 2004 report by a law firm representing 10 industry-related companies under the Information Quality Act.

The complaint contains about 45 comments or issues made, but none of them are of any real consequence.  Some of them were discussions about rounding numbers and others had to do with terminology.  Most required no revisions; while many included some revisions to clarify certain statements.    One complaint was even against using the term "coal tar" to describe a sealant, which is commonly used by applicators and producers.  The term continues to evolve as the industry looks for a sanitized term for their product.

I would encourage anyone to read it for themselves here.

A news release from the USGS is still on the web that says:
The revisions do not change the scientific results of the study or the data presented.
"No data were changed, and none of the additions or revisions have any effect on the scientific conclusions of the study," explained Dr. Barbara Mahler, lead author of the report
http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=1642&from=rss

Isn't it amazing that the industry continues to describe the reports as "grossly flawed" in light of these statements?

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