The Narragansett Bay Estuary Program is funded through the E.P.A.’s approximately $26 million National Estuary Program. Photo: Erik Jacobs / The New York Times

By Lisa Friedman
22 October 2017

WASHINGTON (The New York Times) – The Environmental Protection Agency has canceled the speaking appearance of three agency scientists who were scheduled to discuss climate change at a conference on Monday in Rhode Island, according to the agency and several people involved.

John Konkus, an E.P.A. spokesman and a former Trump campaign operative in Florida, confirmed that agency scientists would not speak at the State of the Narragansett Bay and Watershed program in Providence. He provided no further explanation.

Scientists involved in the program said that much of the discussion at the event centers on climate change. Many said they were surprised by the E.P.A.’s last-minute cancellation, particularly since the agency helps to fund the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program, which is hosting the conference. The scientists who have been barred from speaking contributed substantial material to a 400-page report to be issued on Monday.

The move highlights widespread concern that the E.P.A. will silence government scientists from speaking publicly or conducting work on climate change. Scott Pruitt, the agency administrator, has said that he does not believe human-caused greenhouse gas emissions are primarily responsible for the warming of the planet.

“It’s definitely a blatant example of the scientific censorship we all suspected was going to start being enforced at E.P.A.,” said John King, a professor of oceanography at the University of Rhode Island who chairs the science advisory committee of the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program. “They don’t believe in climate change, so I think what they’re trying to do is stifle discussions of the impacts of climate change.”

Monday’s conference is designed to draw attention to the health of Narragansett Bay, the largest estuary in New England and a key to the region’s tourism and fishing industries. Rhode Island’s entire congressional delegation, all Democrats, will attend a morning news conference. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, an outspoken critic of Mr. Pruitt, will be among the speakers.

Scientists there will unveil the report on the state of the bay, which E.P.A. scientists helped research and write. Among the findings will be that climate change is affecting air and water temperatures, precipitation, sea level and fish in and around the estuary. [more]

E.P.A. Cancels Talk on Climate Change by Agency Scientists

2 comments :

  1. Anonymous said...

    IF scientists are free to work on their own time and give out real science talks to the public - while still employed by the Federal Government, this is what they are going to have to start doing. As far as I know (I worked for the government) they can do this. What you do on your own time is your business.

    Of course, they will risk their jobs and careers, but put that into the perspective and proper context that they are already risking jobs and careers if they support real climate science.

    They should also find public ways to directly counter-act the bad science and bad reporting that is now emanating from the federal agencies Trump has polluted with anti-science deniers. On their own time of course.

    We should financially support these brave scientists too and give them a hand wherever possible. There are many businesses that both benefit and support real science, they need to setup funding to ensure real science continues despite that idiot toxic Cheetos in the White House.

    The risk to humanity is too great for scientists to NOT find a way to do science and to reveal to the non-scientific public what is actually happening with climate change, and the existential risks that this poses to humanity and the dire need to make a massive course correction with our policies and practices. The fate of human civilization really is at stake here.  

  2. Anonymous said...

    "The risk to humanity is too great for scientists to NOT find a way to do science and to reveal to the non-scientific public what is actually happening with climate change, and the existential risks that this poses to humanity and the dire need to make a massive course correction with our policies and practices. The fate of human civilization really is at stake here." Yes, humans must never go extinct, they must exist as long as possible.  

 

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