Guest essay by Eric Worrall
A Department of Energy email allegedly sent to biologist Jennifer Bowen, instructing her to remove the word “climate change” from her proposal, is exciting accusations of climate censorship.
Energy Department Tells Scientist to Remove ‘Climate Change’ From Study
By Michael Sainato • 08/25/17 12:00pm
On August 24, the Trump administration’s Department of Energy censored a Facilities Integrating Collaborations for User Science proposal from Dr. Jennifer Bowen, an associate professor of biology at the University of Massachusetts in Boston.
She posted a screenshot of the email on Facebook, writing, “This just happened. I’m just going to leave this here for people to ponder.”
In the email, Dr. Bowen was told, “I have been asked to contact you to update the wording in your proposal abstract to remove words such as ‘global warming’ or ‘climate change.’ This is being asked as we have to meet the president’s budget language restrictions and don’t want to make any changes without your knowledge or consent. Below is the current wording for your abstract—at your next convenience, will you kindly revise the wording and send back to me as soon as you can? That way we can update our website.” The words “climate change” and “global warming” were highlighted for removal in the proposal.
A version of Jennifer’s proposal appeared on the DOE website which doesn’t mention climate, but instead mentions carbon storage as a driver of “global change”.
… Jennifer Bowen of Northeastern University and co-PI Jonathan Sanderman of Woods Hole Research Center will combine high resolution organic matter characterization and microbial meta-omics to assess the effects of nutrient loading on salt marsh carbon sequestration. They will analyze sediment samples from three-meter-deep cores, where the deepest sediments are approximately 3000 years old, that have been collected as part of a multi-investigator project studying the long-term nutrient enrichment of salt marshes at the NSF initiated Plum Island Ecosystem Long Term Ecological Research site. Their goal is to obtain new insights into the forces that control carbon storage in salt marsh sediments and how exposure of those sediments to a critical global change driver, nitrate enrichment, alters carbon storage capacity, a critical ecosystem service. …
What a mess. DOE personnel allegedly helping climate fixated researchers to subvert Presidential policy, to keep the grant gravy flowing. Greens crying foul about the alleged bureaucratic censorship of the wording of grant proposals.
If Jennifer’s email is genuine, frankly I think the whole programme should be shut down.
If the email allegation is true, it is reprehensible that researchers like Jennifer are allegedly being pressured to change the wording of their research proposals for political reasons. But in my opinion, it is far worse that government bureaucrats are allegedly facilitating funding of disguised climate research programmes in defiance of President Trump’s budget priorities.
When you consider critical issues like the pitiful state of US infrastructure and the skyrocketing US national debt, facilitating government grants for research which produces no value for taxpayers is an outrageous waste of money.
I have no problem with scientists like Jennifer Brown conducting their research, and saying whatever they want about their results. But it is about time scientists like Jennifer started raising their own research money.