Cumbria Trust is now appealing to its supporters to join it in backing Emeritus Professor David Smythe in his legal action against Glasgow University (GU) to restore his right of access to the scientific database. This access was halted in January 2016 within days of Professor Smythe publishing a discussion paper which was critical of UK fracking operations.
Most academic institutions including GU are under significant financial pressure and many are seeking out commercial partnerships as a source of funding. However this desire for funding must not be allowed to obstruct or control scientific debate. By seeking to silence Professor Smythe rather than attempting to rebut his arguments, GU appear to be allowing commercial interests to take precedence over scientific debate, and that cannot go unchallenged.
Professor Smythe has done a huge amount of work for the people of Cumbria during the recent MRWS process to find a site to bury nuclear waste, all of which was unpaid. Without his efforts, and those of Professor Stuart Haszeldine, the debate would have been almost one-sided. Cumbria Trust depends on experts such as Professor Smythe to advise us. Without his access to the scientific database, that will no longer be possible, and our position will be significantly weakened.
Cumbria Trust is contributing £1,000 towards the costs of bringing this legal action, we would encourage our members and supporters to join us in supporting this crowdfunded action as well. You may make a donation HERE.