RealClearScience has a column on their web site that deals with controversial scientific topics which it believes should not be considered controversial, stating that:
Many Americans are being misled on serious scientific issues, and science journalists have to spend an inordinate amount of time debunking myths which seemingly never die.
The article goes on to list 10 topics it considers to be settled science; topics include evolution, global warming, genetically modified foods — and cold fusion.
They make the familiar case that cold fusion cannot happen in a low temperature environment because temperatures like that of the sun are needed for fusion to take place. They then go on to say that Andrea Rossi has claimed to have achieved it with his E-Cat, and therefore should be dismissed — not realizing that Rossi is not claiming that his effect is produced primarily by fusion, and that he has released no theory to explain what is causing the reaction. They state further:
We here at RCS would love nothing more than for Rossi’s E-Cat to work. You can’t dislike the idea of limitless, clean, and affordable energy! But the old maxim still applies: “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” Far from extraordinary, the evidence has been almost nonexistent.
They don’t mention the Levi-Essen 3rd party E-Cat report, which I find to be very substantial evidence in favor of the reality of the Rossi effect.
In the case of cold fusion / LENR, I would say that science journalists really need to do some more careful research and examinations of the topic before they come to conclusions that mislead the public that there is nothing going on here. If they don’t, it’s going require we bloggers to spend an inordinate amount of time trying to debunk the debunking.