Pro-fracking members of the Nebraska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission were silent when a farmer and former pipeline worker invited them to drink water contaminated with chemicals used in the petroleum and natural gas extraction process.

During the public comment portion of the commission hearing, James Osborne referred to previous testimony by members, saying, “So you told me this morning … that you would drink it, this water, right? So, would you drink it? Yes or no?”

When a commission member told Osborne they would not comment, he replied, “Oh, you can’t answer any questions? So, my answer would be no. I would not drink this.

“There is no doubt there will be contamination,” he added during a brief lecture on how contaminated water flows through the state according to fluid dynamics. “There will be spills.”

When Osborne’s three minutes were up, he left the water glasses on the table, thanked the commission members and left to applause from the audience.

Below, a similar encounter plays out when an interviewer asks a lobbyist for Monsanto whether the lobbyist would drink glyphosate, a key ingredient in the corporation’s herbicide product Roundup. The clip is from an upcoming French documentary.

According to the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer, glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic” to humans. The chemical is used in more than 750 products made by Monsanto and other companies and has been found in water, air and food in areas where it is sprayed.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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