As The Post’s Joby Warrick reported earlier this week, Rep. Raul Grijalva (D- Ariz.), the ranking member of the House Committee on Natural Resources, asked seven universities for detailed records on the funding sources for seven scientists, many of whom are unconvinced that humans are the driving force behind recent climate change.
In a letter to Grijalva released this afternoon, the American Meteorological Society (AMS) — a scientific and professional society representing atmospheric and oceanic scientists — expressed strong opposition to the inquiry.
“Publicly singling out specific researchers based on perspectives they have expressed and implying a failure to appropriately disclose funding sources — and thereby questioning their scientific integrity — sends a chilling message to all academic researchers,” the AMS wrote.One the scientists, Roger Pielke, Jr., writes:
...I have no funding, declared or undeclared, with any fossil fuel company or interest. I never have. Representative Grijalva knows this too, because when I have testified before the US Congress, I have disclosed my funding and possible conflicts of interest. So I know with complete certainty that this investigation is a politically-motivated “witch hunt” designed to intimidate me (and others) and to smear my name.Steve Hayward is another target. He writes:
Pepperdine’s administration will produce their own proper response since the letter is addressed to them rather than to me, but Rep. Grijalva and his McCarthyite witch hunters are in for a disappointment: there are no undisclosed financial supporters of my writing. I’ve received—and am receiving—no grants, honoraria, consulting fees, good karma baubles, or even Christmas cards from any fossil fuel interest, though I’d be proud and open about it if I did. And I didn’t consult anyone for the content of my congressional testimony over the years, though so what if I had? Is the good congressman really telling us that he is incapable of assessing factual claims and judgments about the wisdom of policy on the merits alone? That doesn’t speak well of his probity.
I do hope the House Committee on Natural Resources will hold a hearing on this topic, because I’d love to ask Rep. Grijava some questions in return, such as which contacts at Greenpeace ginned up the particulars of his complaint (since I doubt the worthy Rep. or his staff actually read Power Line, which is cited in his letter). Further, it will be fun to ask a series of questions about the incentives of government-funded scientists, such as what might happen to their government research grants if they didn’t report a result congenial to Rep. Grijalva. More to the point: why pick on the seven of us at universities? Does he really just say “how high?” every time Greenpeace asks him to jump?