Public Notice of the Author’s Rejection of the Retraction of the Peer-Reviewed and Published Scientific Article “Evidence of Coal-Fly-Ash Toxic Chemical Geoengineering in the Troposphere: Consequences for Public Health” by the MDPI journal, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (IJERPH)
September 24, 2015
In the instant matter, singly and/or the collectively, IJERPH Editor Dr. Paul B. Tchunwou, MDPI Chief Science Officer Dr. Franck Vazquez, and MDPI Principal Dr. Shu-Kun Lin (hereafter MDPI AG) the author alleges:
- Acted in blatant disregard of long standing scientific and ethical principles based upon an appeal to truth
- Acted in blatant disregard of MDPI’s published “strict ethical policies and standards”
- Allowed MDPI AG to be deceived and/or coerced and/or co-opted into acting in such a manner as to deceive the public about evidence of a grave, pervasive, and widespread public health threat
- Required the author to sign a statement of no conflict of interest, but did not require same for individual(s) making critical statements upon which said retraction was based
- Required the author to submit to peer-review but did not submit to peer-review said critical comments upon which retraction was based
- Failed to provide verbatim critical comments to the author for written response and publication
- Based said retraction upon false critical statements
- Published false, misleading and/or pejorative statements as the basis for said retraction
- Published false, misleading and/or pejorative statements libelous to the author and failed to remove same even after being advised on September 5, 2015 of the false nature of same
- Aided and abetted an organized disinformation campaign whose actions are aimed at deceiving the public about an on-going program of spraying of toxic substances into the air over inhabited areas
As described in detail below, there is no demonstrated legitimate basis for MDPI AG to have retracted said article; MDPI AG should promptly republish it with the author’s corrections as presented here.
- Retracted Article http://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/12/8/9375/pdf
- Editor’s Basis for Retraction Statements http://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/12/9/10941/htm
- Retracted Article as Originally Published http://www.nuclearplanet.com/ijerph-original.pdf
- Author’s Revision to Retracted Article http://www.nuclearplanet.com/ijerph-error_corrected.pdf
- Author’s Letter Dated September 5, 2015 http://www.nuclearplanet.com/email-Sept5.pdf
- Author’s Letter Dated September 21, 2015 http://www.nuclearplanet.com/email-Sept21.pdf
- Author’s Record of Important Scientific Advances http://www.nuclearplanet.com/advances.html
Immediately after the author published the first article in Current Science providing evidence that the particulate matter being sprayed into the air over inhabited areas is most likely toxic coal combustion ash, the Editor received a lengthy list of complaints about the article and a demand for retraction. The Current Science Editor responded by sending verbatim comments to the author and requested point-by-point responses in writing. The comments were false, misleading and/or pejorative. The following example from the author’s response to Current Science includes a few of the comments made and is revealing as to their origin:
“The attack on my scientific ethics, capability, and intent is inexplicable from the standpoint of academic debate, but may be understandable in light of a 1967 United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) dispatch marked ‘psych’ for ‘psychological operations’ or disinformation and ‘CS’ for the CIA’s ‘Clandestine Services’. The dispatch employed the term ‘conspiracy theorist’ and stated in part: ‘The aim of this dispatch is to provide material countering and discrediting the claims of the conspiracy theorists, so as to inhibit the circulation of such claims … To employ propaganda assets to and refute the attacks of the critics…. Our ploy should point out, as applicable, that the critics are (I) wedded to theories adopted before the evidence was in, (II) politically interested, (III) financially interested, (IV) hasty and inaccurate in their research, or (V) infatuated with their own theories.’ The criticisms made by the individual to which this response is addressed appear to be crafted in accordance with that CIA dispatch, including but not limited to the following remarks: ‘The general tone of the article is just strange, and inadequate in a scientific journal….The article uses very low quality, unscientific references such as various conspiracy theorist web sites and their unreliable data…. Reading the entire paper, it is clear that Dr. Herndon’s goal is to spread a known conspiracy theory called the ‘chemtrail conspiracy theory’, while providing completely invalid and unscientific evidence for it. This conspiracy theory has no scientific basis, and it is pure fabrication’.”
The fact that criticism of both papers, Current Science and IJERPH, is posted on the well-known disinformation website http://metabunk.org is evidence that the source of the criticisms comes from an organization that consistently misleads the public with false information about a covert program involved in spraying toxic substances into the air over inhabited areas.
MDPI AG erred by failing to provide the author with verbatim comments for his response and possible publication. The journal website http://mdpi.com publically states: “MDPI is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). MDPI takes the responsibility to enforce a rigorous peer-review together with strict ethical policies and standards to ensure to add high quality scientific works to the field of scholarly publication”. Retracting a peer-reviewed paper written by a senior, internationally recognized scientist, without full disclosure and independent adjudication, on the basis of false, misleading and/or pejorative remarks by one or more persons allegedly associated with an organization that misleads the public about serious health related matters stands in stark contradiction to said “strict ethical policies and standards”. Such behavior is an abomination, a perversion of long-established scientific principles.
MDPI AG published three bulleted “concerns” as justification for said retraction: http://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/12/9/10941/htm It is obvious that those remarks were parroted from statements made by one or more experts at deception whose aim was to have said paper retracted. In the following, the author proceeds line by line to demonstrate the distortions and misrepresentations. Red are MDPI AG quotes under Editor Tchunwou’s name; blue are the author’s responses to same.
The value for average leachate concentration of Aluminum mentioned in Table 1 and used by the author to normalize the data presented in Figures 2, 3, 4 and 5 is incorrect.
Not true. The incorrect data was not for the average leachate concentration, but for the average un-leached coal fly ash composition. The incorrect data was only used to normalize the data presented in Figures 4 and 5, not in Figures 2 and 3.
The author uses 70,000 μg/kg, while the correct value resulting from the un-leached European coal fly ash samples measurements published by Moreno et al. ) is 140,000,000 μg/kg.
Those criticizing my paper make it look like a huge error, and the half-truth makes it seem so. What should have been stated is that the un-leached column heading was mistyped as μg/kg, but should have read μg/g; the data were tabulated as μg/g. The error was in listing the aluminum value as 70,000 μg/g when it should have been 140,000 μg/g, a factor of two. In scientific literature, this is the kind of error that is usually allowed to be corrected as it should have been in the present instance.
This error invalidates the conclusions of the article.
No, it does not. In the worst case, if uncorrected, it might invalidate the data shown in Figures 4 and 5, but the conclusions of the article are derived from Figures 2 and 3 which are not affected by the error. Moreover, Figures 4 and 5, when normalized to another element, for example, barium are not invalidated.
The chemical compositions obtained for rainwater and HEPA air filter dust are only compared to chemical compositions obtained for coal-fly-ash leaching experiments . The author did not attempt to compare his results to chemical compositions of other potential sources.
Not true. I stated that there were no sources of industrial pollution in the area, and provided reason why coal fly ash from China was unlikely.
Thus, at this stage, the work is preliminary since it is not clear what the source of these chemicals is.
In the absence of viable other sources, the evidence is that the coal fly ash is likely the substance being placed in the atmosphere by tanker-jets. That is consistent with the nature of the material, and its availability from existing production facilities. Yes, this needs to be proven conclusively. But it is a misrepresentation to state “is not clear what the source of these chemicals is”. Science involves the progressive replacing of less-precise understanding with more-precise understanding. Indeed, much of the current underlying understanding in the natural physical sciences is in a sense “preliminary” and subject to revision by subsequent more-precise understanding, but that is no reason or basis to prevent publication of relevant evidence.
The language of the paper is often not sufficiently scientifically objective for a research article.
Not true. Reviewers, especially the particularly meticulous Reviewer 1, would never have approved the paper if this was the case. He/she was especially meticulous to make sure that every statement was precise. This criticism has no merit. A similar criticism as made in an effort to cause retraction of the author’s Current Science paper, namely the statement “The general tone of the article is just strange, and inadequate in a scientific journal”. The author has a lengthy track record of publishing important advances in world-class scientific journals and knows how to write scientific papers: http://www.nuclearplanet.com/advances.htm
In his September 5, 2015 letter, the author substantially conveyed these responses to MDPI AG, but to date those published misrepresentations have been allowed by MDPI AG to stand, thereby aiding and abetting those who intentionally deceive the public about the on-going toxic spraying and its adverse public health consequences: http://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/12/9/10941/htm
As a basis for retracting said paper, MDPI AG quoted the above statements, shown here in red, that allegedly are intended to deceive for the purpose of causing the retraction of the author’s article by an entity with an allegedly malevolent agenda. The remarks made are libelous, causing harm to the author’s reputation; those who systematically deceive the public in this matter have widely propagandized said retraction. That is fundamentally wrong scientifically and ethically. Moreover, it allegedly makes MDPI AG complicit in deceiving the public about evidence of a grave, pervasive, and widespread public health threat. By retracting said paper, based upon false and misleading statements by an entity that allegedly wishes unwarrantedly to discredit and hide the author’s work from public view, MDPI AG emboldens said entity to do the same thing to other publishers. MDPI AH by its action demonstrates that false and misleading statements, perpetrated by those with a conflict of interest, or purposeful malevolent agenda, carry more weight with MDPI AG than scientific reason based upon an appeal to fact. MDPI AG therefore allegedly prolongs the period of time during which the most vulnerable among us, pregnant women, children, those with compromised respiratory/immune systems and the elderly, will suffer the consequences of unrelenting toxic particulate matter sprayed into the air people breathe.
The author has requested the following from MDPI AG: (1) To be allowed allowed make revisions to said published paper, as is the normal process when errors occur; and, (2) For MDPI AG to request the full credentials (including position and organization) of those making complaints, and their permission to publish their remarks so that the author might respond in print. To date, those requests have not been fulfilled.
With the anticipation and expectation that eventually MDPI AG will correct allegedly blatant failings in their response to the attack by those individuals who allegedly seek to deceive the public and wish to hide and discredit the author’s published scientific article, the author has made a few changes to correct the consequences of the error in Table 1, as well as to debilitate accusations made by those who allegedly act to systematically deceive the public and the scientific community: http://www.nuclearplanet.com/ijerph-error_corrected.pdf
The following principal changes were made:
- Although Figures 2 and 3 are correct as published, these Figures are renormalized to barium so as to include previously published rainwater data and to make these Figures consistent with the revised Figure 4. Figure 3 is presented in a different format to show additionally the ranges of experimental European coal fly ash leachate values.
- Figure 4 was renormalized to barium and put into a different format to show measured ranges of coal fly ash compositions, both from Europe and the United States, thereby obviating Figure 5. Three additional sets of HEPA air filter data are included.
The author herewith requests and indeed demands that MDPI AG rescind retraction of said scientific article and publish said article with corrections as shown here: http://www.nuclearplanet.com/ijerph-error_corrected.pdf
J. Marvin Herndon, Ph.D.