Lamar Smith, one of the most vocal critics of climate science in Congress, led a secret trip to the Arctic in May 2017. The CODEL visited or learned about these research facilities in Alaska, according to the NSF. Graphic: BuzzFeed News

By Zahra Hirji
14 July 2017

(BuzzFeed News) – Lamar Smith, one of the most vocal critics of climate science in Congress, led a secret trip to the Arctic in May, BuzzFeed News has learned.

He and at least eight other US representatives, mostly members of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, met with scientists working on the front lines of climate change.

It had the potential to be an awkward or even hostile visit. As chair of the science committee for the past four years, Rep. Smith of Texas has waged a public war with federal climate scientists, or “so-called self-professed climate scientists,” as he called them in March. He’s challenged their research and integrity, repeatedly subpoenaed their emails, and voted to gut their funding.

Billed as an oversight visit for the science committee, the May 8–14 trip included a series of closed-door sessions for the politicians to inspect facilities and learn about federally funded science conducted at research hot spots in the Arctic Circle, as well as social events for the lawmakers and their families. No one publicized the visit, and some scientists told BuzzFeed News they were instructed not to talk about it.

In this part of the world, the realities of climate change are hard to ignore. On an aerial tour of Greenland, for example, the lawmakers saw the retreating “sugar top” ice cap and connecting glaciers. Scientists told them about how warmer temperatures had even changed the local insect populations.

“They were pretty clear that 10 years ago they didn’t have mosquitoes in the summer and now they do,” said Rep. Jerry McNerney, a Democrat who joined the committee because he wanted to take action on climate, and who accompanied Smith to the Arctic. “There was some real direct, you know, concrete evidence that things are changing.”

Smith's team canceled a call with BuzzFeed News two minutes before it was scheduled, and subsequently did not respond to questions about the purpose of the trip or his impressions of Arctic research. But McNerney said he had productive discussions with Smith about climate issues.

“It really gave me the opportunity to go over this stuff with him and see how he felt and find that, hey, there really is some common interest here,” McNerney said. [more]

This Congressman Doesn’t Think Climate Science Is Real. He Just Went On A Secret Tour Of The Melting Arctic.

1 comments :

  1. Anonymous said...

    "Smith's team canceled a call with BuzzFeed News two minutes before it was scheduled, and subsequently did not respond to questions about the purpose of the trip or his impressions of Arctic research."

    Lamar Smith is a coward - and a bully (now getting instructions from Trump). He won't admit to what he's seen. That would require integrity. And honesty. And admission of guilt. His witch hunts would end. And so would much of his support (what little there is). Cancelling a scheduled call is embarrassing, but desperate fools often do desperate things.

    So let's recap the real story here - back in May, Smith gets a first-hand look of the effects of climate change. It's now July. No admission from Smith or his chrony's that they have always been wrong on this topic.

    Well, nothing new from the liars in the Republican party. I've always said that in-your-face-evidence is still insufficient to persuade these idiots to accept reality. They're simply too vested in embracing distortions and fantasy.

    "McNerney said that he and Smith discussed the economic obstacles to curbing global warming. “He believes you can’t do anything if it’s going to hurt the economy," McNerney said, referring to Smith.

    Smith was reportedly no less inquisitive in the Arctic than he is when presiding over his infamous congressional hearings, though the scientists said there were no tense moments.

    “It was positive, I can say that,” said a researcher on the trip who requested anonymity for fearing of getting in trouble. “We were asked not to publicize the tour. I want to be careful not to overstep.”

    It's been obvious for years that secrecy is part of the denial campaign on global warming. There is simply NO WAY these legislatures could not know what the science has been saying about a warming planet. Muzzling scientists is part of their play book, along with muzzling their own secret "research" (this was probably a feel-good book tour in reality). I'm glad some of the researchers thought it was positive, but Lamar is still a stupid fool and will go right back to his denial campaign.

    Read the article. Lamar is only interested in the economic potential of melting ice and how it will unlock more money and opportunities for humans to exploit. This was even noticed by the researchers. He does not care at all about what this means for habitability or temperature tolerance or how this might effect future human survival.

    Republicans see the world as something that must be over-exploited, to enrich themselves and their associates. This is why they are so hated by so many - they perceive the world through monetized glasses - about everything. There is no humanity, no compassion, no concern about the welfare of people, places, animals, planet. If its not about profitability and exploitation, they're not interested. They're sub-human, having grossly distorted their own beliefs (Christianity) into a profit-model for subjugation of the world. ~SA~  

 

Blog Template by Adam Every . Sponsored by Business Web Hosting Reviews