Mr. Ricardo Fuentes, representative of the company responsible for fracking operations in Mendoza province (Argentina) – PETROLERA EL TREBOL S.A.- and coordinator at Argentina’s most prominent fracking lobby group IAPG (INSTITUTO ARGENTINO DEL PETROLEO Y DEL GAS), is at the same time the vice dean at UTN Mendoza Regional Campus (UNIVERSIDAD TECNOLOGICA NACIONAL- one of the most important universities in the country), where water samples from his own company are sent to be analyzed for contamination by fracking operations in Malargüe.
While water samples have been mostly sent for analysis to UNIVERSIDAD NACIONAL DE CUYO and only few used to be sent to UTN, following EcoLeaks’ publication of the secret government report revealing contamination of aquifers in Malargüe by fracking, Mendoza’s government has ordered for all samples to be analyzed at Mr. Fuentes’ UTN.
The Irrigation Department, the independent government agency responsible for protecting and administering Mendoza’s water, signed a contract with UTN to place its own water testing laboratory at the UTN campus and delegate the testing services to Mr. Fuentes’ university.
This demonstrates a clear conflict of interests and oil companies corrupting regulatory and government agencies.
Mr. Fuentes as Vice Dean at UTN Mendoza Regional Campus:
Mr. Fuentes as representative of fracking company PETROLERA EL TREBOL S.A.:
Mr. Fuentes as coordinator at IAPG fracking lobby group: