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Environment

Hey NYT: What the Frak?

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This NYT exposé on lax regulation of the booming natural gas industry is a must read, but the paper of record is very late to the party. And the author of the piece, Ian Urbina, is fairly ungenerous in his acknowledgment of that fact when he notes, one quarter of the way into his story, that "some of the [environmental] problems" associated with a new form of gas drilling has been

documented by ProPublica, The Associated Press and other news organizations, especially out West.

For some reason, Urbina and his editors didn't see fit to offer any links to the in-depth reportage produced by these news outlets (even though links to other primary sources are sprinkled throughout the story). That's a disservice to Times readers, who, perhaps interested in seeing more of this prior coverage, might want to click on this recent AP story, or this treasure trove of sustained reporting by ProPublica, or any of these stories and dispatches in High Country News. (Self-promotion alert: while living in Colorado in 2008, I reported on an air pollution angle of natural gas drilling for High Country News.) For all the vaunted cross collaboration between publications these days, it's unfortunate that some are still so grudging when it comes to giving credit to one's peers.

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