Monthly Archives: September 2008

Inspectors General Reform Act strengthens federal agency watchdogs

The Inspectors General Reform Act of 2008, passed unanimously by Congress last week, will give federal scientists a safe place to report political interference, on independent Web sites set up to receive anonymous reports about misconduct at federal agencies.

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Sierra: On staffing to restore integrity to the environmental and public lands agencies

“Profiles in Courage,” an article in the September/October issue of Sierra, the magazine of the Sierra Club, says “When it comes time to staff the environmental agencies, the next president could do worse than pick from those who stood up … Continue reading

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Notes on Conrad Lautenbacher’s troubled legacy on science and politics at NOAA (Part 2)

Any assessment of the tenure of Conrad Lautenbacher, who has resigned as NOAA Administrator effective October 31, will have to consider the problems of political interference with climate science communication and the mismanagement of the NPOESS satellite global climate monitoring … Continue reading

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Center for Capacity Building is resurrected by Rockefeller Foundation to create new Consortium

Shortly after Andrew Revkin reported in his New York Times’ DotEarth blog that the National Center for Atmospheric Research would be shutting down its Center for Capacity Building, CCB’s director Michael “Mickey” Glantz was approached by the Rockefeller Foundation whose … Continue reading

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NOAA head Lautenbacher resigns, leaving troubled legacy on science and politics (Part 1)

Vice Adm. Conrad Lautenbacher, administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration throughout the Bush administration, announced his resignation on Sept. 23.  While he has accomplishments to his credit, Lautenbacher’s view of himself as part of a chain of command … Continue reading

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National Academy of Sciences issues advice to 44th President for filling key science posts

A new National Academy of Sciences report gives good guidance on filling top federal science and technology positions with the best possible candidates. The report lists climate change as a high-priority challenge. We recommend that individuals with a strong understanding … Continue reading

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Phil Clapp, R.I.P.

We are saddened by the untimely death of Philip Clapp, 54, deputy managing director of the Pew Environmental Group in Washington, DC.  Phil Clapp was a force for good in the battle to get US policymakers to come to grips … Continue reading

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CREW: “Those Who Dared: 30 Officials Who Stood Up for Our Country”

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington released its report, Those Who Dared: 30 Officials Who Stood Up for Our Country, on July 16, “recognizing the brave individuals who have acted and spoken out against unethical and dishonorable conduct in … Continue reading

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As Hurricane Ike careens toward Texas, we are reminded of a warning the White House silenced

On March 12, 2008 the US government quietly released a report, Impacts of Climate Variability and Change on Transportation and Infrastructure—Gulf Coast Study.  The study, one of 21 being produced by the US Climate Change Science Program, was silenced by … Continue reading

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California creates a “water bank” to handle chronic drought: Will it be temporary, or permanent?

After several years of chronic drought, facing the most significant water crisis in its history, the State of California formally declared a drought emergency in June and last week resurrected a mechanism last used in 1992 for delivering “surplus” water … Continue reading

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