Flashback to June 26, 2011: The New York Times published an article written by Ian Urbana, that was supposed to reveal professional opinions about fracking by anonymous experts or officials at the Energy Information Agency or the EIA that were in opposition to public statements made by the government agency. In his article, Urbana cited anonymous senior officials in the EIA who discredited the shale oil industry. The problem is, those senior officials never existed, the anonymous “senior officials” ended up being an intern at the EIA, who Urbana used in his article to push an anti-shale agenda.
Here is a portion of the article published by the New York Times (The red print indicates the portions of the article where Urbana used quotes from anonymous sources that turned out to be an intern at the EIA):
One official says the shale industry may be “set up for failure.” “It is quite likely that many of these companies will go bankrupt,” a senior adviser to the Energy Information Administration administrator predicts. Several officials echo concerns raised during previous bubbles, in housing and in technology stocks , for example, that ended in a bust.
Energy Information Administration employees also explain in e-mails and documents, copies of which were obtained by The New York Times , that industry estimates might overstate the amount of gas that companies can affordably get out of the ground.