The Government Accountability Project (GAP) launched Climate Science Watch (CSW) in 2005 as a public interest education and advocacy project dedicated to holding public officials accountable for using climate research effectively and with integrity in dealing with the challenge of global climate disruption. CSW was developed and spearheaded by Rick Piltz, who joined GAP when he resigned after 10 years in the U.S. Global Change Research Program Coordination Office to blow the whistle on the George W. Bush White House for political interference with the integrity of climate change communication. At the time, CSW became an important opposition voice in a hostile environment with the naysayers on climate change in charge of a “know-nothing” policy of denial. Today, GAP promotes, defends and advises experts inside U.S. policy centers who know about the political manipulation of science to suit a bureaucratic landscape that is hostile to what society is increasingly realizing are inconvenient truths. Although the fossil-fuel industry is now less able to obscure scientific findings, its pressure remains within federal agencies and some state governments responsible for climate science research and state and local policy. By challenging similar efforts to compromise these climate policies, we believe we are helping to confront a global crisis.
GAP intends to honor the legacy of Rick Piltz by carrying forward what he had envisioned just before his passing in the fall of 2014. Drawing on Rick’s extensive network and decades of experience, and building off of his successes and increasing impact on these critical issues, the next phase of GAP’s Climate Science Watch program – now renamed: Climate Science & Policy Watch (CSPW) – is to assess the actual implementation of the administration’s stated support for a strong climate policy and critique its contradictory behind-the-scenes actions that support accelerated fossil fuel development. This website is a vehicle for our commentary, documentation, and reform advocacy.
“You have to have the leadership – listen to what federal climate scientists are saying – and embrace it and accept it and promote it and act on it.…But it’s really for the rest of us to take the responsibility to hold public officials accountable to enable society to get the global warming problem dealt with effectively. And that’s something I think that we all have a role in.
I’ll leave you with that thought.”
– RICK S. PILTZ
Accepting the 2006 Ridenhour Award for Truth-telling
National Press Club
April 4, 2006