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Independent Investigation Finds Concerted Gov't Effort to Silence NASA Climate Scientists
Written by Daniel   
Wednesday, 04 June 2008 12:30
A new investigation finds a consistent pattern of suppression of data by political appointees, though it fails to implicate higher ups
Jason Mick (Blog) - June 4, 2008 9:10 AM

Those following the global warming debate here at DailyTech can likely agree on two things -- first a lot of research remains to be done before definitive conclusions can be drawn. And secondly, many people hold very strong opinions on the topic.

Critics of the prevalent view among the scientific community -- that anthropogenic effects have at least a mild effect on warming -- tend to take two bents in their criticism. Sometimes they point to dissenting opinions on underlying theory presented in various studies or to studies that indicate that perhaps global warming would have beneficial effects in addition to negative ones.

Another common form of criticism is to claim that scientists critical to global warming are actively being suppressed. These criticisms allege that a conspiratorial pattern is keeping the truth from coming out. Somewhat ironically, a new report indicates quite the opposite. The released results of an analysis from NASA's internal investigative office found that between 2004 and 2006 there was a concerted effort by political appointees at the NASA press office to silence the opinions and exposure of scientists who publicly supported anthropogenic global warming theory.

The report concludes that such interference may border on illegality as it is "inconsistent" with the laws that established the space program here in the U.S. The findings were presented in a 48-page report initially requested by the U.S. Senate in 2006. The efforts to suppress the researchers were only linked to the NASA press office. There was no evidence found that NASA or higher Bush administration officials were involved in trying to silence the global warming supporters.

The report lauded Michael Griffin, the agency administrator for making a series of rapid and effective policy changes to put to end the problems. Griffin acted quickly after the story first broke in the New York Times early in 2006.

Kevin H. Winters, assistant inspector general for investigations, signed off on the finished investigation. It found that political appointees withheld or delayed news releases on global warming on what it characterizes as "sustained pattern". Further, it found that the appointees silenced oft-maligned James E. Hansen, the leading climate scientist at NASA by limiting his contact with the press.   [Dailytech...]  [Comments....]

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