Viewpoint: How ‘lazy journalists’ helped anti-pesticide biologist Tyrone Hayes needlessly scare the public

U.C. Berkeley biologist Tyrone Hayes remains controversial for his claim that atrazine harms frogs. Image: New Yorker

What do you do when….someone asks to see the raw data that your dubious claims are based on? This was one of many problems facing the American biologist….Tyrone Hayes, in the early 2000s. At the time, Hayes was a member of a panel of experts conducting studies for a company called Novartis (later Syngenta) on the safety of one of their herbicides, atrazine.

He claimed to have found that the herbicide was negatively affecting amphibian development and hypothesized it may also be affecting humans in a similar way….Hayes’ resisted doing a duplicate study or answering questions about his data….which put the EPA in a difficult situation….They took it upon themselves to contract two independent labs in two countries to determine what impact atrazine had on amphibian reproductive health and found….nothing!

Related article:  EPA re-approves controversial weed killer atrazine, arguing benefits outweigh potential ecological risks

In 2014, Hayes was interviewed on “Democracy Now” following the publication of an article, which I can only describe as a puff piece in The New Yorker. The show was titled “Silencing the Scientist: Tyrone Hayes on Being Targeted By Herbicide Firm Syngenta,” and is another example of biased, poorly-schooled, lazy journalists helping charlatans to become victims so they can circumvent the scientific method and directly scare the public.

Read full, original article: Is Atrazine Turning The Freakin’ Frogs Gay!? – #3

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