Tags: Climate Change | Global Warming | climate change | skeptics | funding | Willie Soon | Raul Grijalva

Scientists Angry at Inquiry Into Climate Change Skeptics' Funding

By    |   Tuesday, 03 Mar 2015 06:46 AM

Democratic lawmakers are politically intimidating scientists who are climate change skeptics by demanding their academic institutions reveal who is funding their work, according to The Daily Caller.

The American Meteorological Society's director, Keith Seitter, wrote Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva, the top Democrat on the House Committee on Natural Resources to complain: "Publicly singling out specific researchers based on perspectives they have expressed and implying a failure to appropriately disclose funding sources — and thereby questioning their scientific integrity — sends a chilling message to all academic researchers."

Grijalva kicked off a controversy when he contacted seven universities requesting information on who was funding climate research, The Washington Post reported.

Democratic Sens. Ed Markey of Massachusetts, Barbara Boxer of California, and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island have also questioned the soundness of research paid for by trade groups connected to coal and oil companies, according to the Caller.

Grijalva's letter was prompted by the disclosure that climate skeptic Wei-Hock (Willie) Soon had not revealed his research was supported by $409,000 from an electric utility that uses coal power.

The disclosure requirements of scientific journals vary. Scientists say it is best to disclose funding sources, but criticize lawmakers for going after researchers who hold minority viewpoints.

Judith Curry, a professor of atmospheric science at the Georgia Institute of Technology, one of the scientists targeted by Grijalva, wrote in her blog, "Unlike research related to food and drug safety and environmental contaminants, most climate science is easily replicable using publicly available data sets and models. So all this is, frankly, a red herring in the field of climate science research."

She added, "It looks like it is 'open season' on anyone who deviates even slightly from the consensus. The political motivations of all this are apparent."

University of Colorado scientist Roger Pielke was also on Grijalva's list. He is part of the scientific mainstream on global warming and backs the Obama administration's regulatory policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"I have no funding, declared or undeclared, with any fossil fuel company or interest. I never have," he wrote on his blog.

Pielke has, however, questioned the connection between climate change and natural disasters. He has provided congressional testimony at the request of Republicans.

GOP lawmakers wrote to the seven universities contacted by Grijalva and urged them to "continue to support scientific inquiry and discovery, and protect academic freedom despite efforts to chill free speech."

Climate skeptics tend to challenge the prevailing view that greenhouse gases pose a risk to humanity. Some question altogether whether global warming is real.

Government scientists say that the release of carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and fluorinated gases make it harder for the planet to cool naturally, thereby contributing to global warming.

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Democratic lawmakers are politically intimidating scientists who are climate change skeptics by demanding their academic institutions reveal who is funding their work, according to The Daily Caller.
climate change, skeptics, funding, Willie Soon, Raul Grijalva
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2015-46-03
Tuesday, 03 Mar 2015 06:46 AM
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