"Regent Defends Intervening With U. Iowa On Ethanol"

"IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Regent Bruce Rastetter intervened on behalf of ethanol industry leaders who were upset with a prominent University of Iowa researcher for warning that water-intensive ethanol production was threatening Iowa's water supply, records show."

"Critics called the intervention of Rastetter, an ethanol executive and top donor to Gov. Terry Branstad, another example of his meddling in university affairs in ways that affect his personal interests and threaten academic freedom.

'Sally, the industry would appreciate being able to provide factual information so this professor isn't uninformed,' Rastetter wrote to University President Sally Mason Jan. 30, asking whether 'there is a way to accomplish that.'

Rastetter said he was trying to foster dialogue between industry officials and engineering professor Jerald Schnoor, director of the university's Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research."

Ryan J. Foley reports for the Associated Press February 19, 2013.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013