Climate scientists protest ‘the Trumpocene’ – ‘This is a frightening moment. We have seen in the last few weeks how the reins of the federal government are being handed over to the fossil fuel industry.’Posted by Jim at Thursday, December 15, 2016
By Sarah Kaplan
15 December 2016
SAN FRANCISCO (Washington Post) – Activism wasn't originally on the agenda for Stephen Mullens, a meteorologist at the University of Oklahoma.
He'd come to the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union — the first major gathering of the world's earth and climate scientists since the election of Donald Trump — to do what one usually does at these sorts of conferences: meet with colleagues, browse posters, listen to panel discussions, wait in long lines for free coffee.
But the dawn of what one researcher called “the Trumpocene” has everyone at AGU reckoning with their role in this new era.
For Mullens, that meant attending his first-ever protest Tuesday. Standing in a crowd of fellow researchers, he listened as Beka Economopoulos, the director of the Natural History Museum, a mobile museum based in New York, implored them to get “out of the labs and into the streets” in response to the president-elect's positions on climate change.
The protest, organized by the activist group ClimateTruth.org and the Natural History Museum, drew several hundred people from the massive AGU conference happening a few blocks away. Some of the scientists donned white lab coats distributed by the organizers. Others held up signs that read “Science is not a liberal conspiracy,” “Ice has no agenda — it just melts” and “Protect science.” A few looked nervous when a speaker led the crowd in a chant of “Stand up. Fight back.” But they gamely joined in. [more]
By Randy Showstack
14 December 2016
(Eos) – Hundreds of people, many of them scientists, rallied in support of science yesterday in San Francisco just a few blocks from where the largest annual gathering of Earth and space scientists in the world was taking place.
Rally organizers staged the event in the face of what they said are unprecedented threats to the sciences, particularly climate science. The demonstrators protested some of the likely appointees and potential policies of the incoming administration of U.S. president-elect Donald Trump.
“This is a frightening moment. We have seen in the last few weeks how the reins of the federal government are being handed over to the fossil fuel industry,” rally speaker Naomi Oreskes told the crowd that gathered for the lunchtime rally on a cloudy day. Oreskes is a professor of the history of science and an affiliated professor of Earth and planetary sciences at Harvard University.
As she spoke in a small park on Mission Street in downtown San Francisco, nearby more than 20,000 scientists were attending the annual Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), an international organization of Earth and space scientists and the publisher of Eos.org.
Oreskes and other scientists on an impromptu stage donned lab coats while speaking to the protesters, many of whom wore AGU meeting badges. Some protesters held signs that read, “Thou shalt not make Earth too warm,” “We love science,” and “Climate science not debatable, it’s life or death for civilization.”
Scientists “have to stand up and be counted in whatever ways we can,” Oreskes told Eos. She said that in the past, scientists “have been reluctant to get involved in politics because we’d like science and politics to be separate, but our science has been politicized by the right wing, by the climate deniers, by ExxonMobil, and we have to fight back against that.”
Within the past several days, Trump has announced his intention to nominate Oklahoma attorney general Scott Pruitt, a climate change skeptic, as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as secretary of state. [more]
By Sarah Emerson
13 December 2016
(Motherboard) – With hope, exhaustion, and a fair bit of anger, dozens of scientists and climate experts met to protest the coming Trump Administration.
An estimated 26,000 scientists met today at the American Geophysical Union’s (AGU) annual conference in San Francisco, California. It was the first major gathering of climate experts since the election of Donald Trump, and the findings shared there were appropriately grim: Our planet is changing—for the worse—and nowhere is this more apparent than the Arctic where rising temperatures, disappearing sea ice, and dwindling species populations are evidence of our collective inaction. […]
“We don’t want to be here,” Naomi Oreskes, an earth and planetary science professor at Harvard University, shouted to a crowd of several hundred people in San Francisco’s Jessie Square. “We want to be doing the work we were trained and educated to do, which is science. So don’t get upset, don’t get depressed. Get organized.” [more]