Wednesday :: Jun 8, 2005

Nearly Two Years Late, The Times Realizes That White House Is Doctoring Global Warming Reports


by Steve

It was reported by the New York Times this morning that a former lobbyist for the oil industry, who was placed as Chief of Staff in the White House Council on Environmental Quality for just this purpose, edited several government reports over a period of years to downplay the science and threat of global warming. In some cases, Phillip A. Cooney took out whole paragraphs of reports that had scientific backing, which had been approved by White House staff, to water down the impact of the report. (sounds like Cheney to me)

We here at the Left Coaster had already reported on this development nearly two years ago, when Londonís Observer newspaper reported that Cooney was working with the Competitive Enterprise Institute to solicit their help in undermining government reports on global warming and to even get Christine Todd Whitman fired as head of the EPA.

In handwritten notes on drafts of several reports issued in 2002 and 2003, the official, Philip A. Cooney, removed or adjusted descriptions of climate research that government scientists and their supervisors, including some senior Bush administration officials, had already approved. In many cases, the changes appeared in the final reports.
The dozens of changes, while sometimes as subtle as the insertion of the phrase "significant and fundamental" before the word "uncertainties," tend to produce an air of doubt about findings that most climate experts say are robust.
Before going to the White House in 2001, he was the "climate team leader" and a lobbyist at the American Petroleum Institute, the largest trade group representing the interests of the oil industry. A lawyer with a bachelor's degree in economics, he has no scientific training.
A White House spokeswoman, Michele St. Martin, said yesterday that Mr. Cooney would not be available to comment. "We don't put Phil Cooney on the record," Ms. St. Martin said. "He's not a cleared spokesman."

Ah, so he is just an industry weasel who is supposed to operate in the dark out of public view, huh?

Perhaps Joe Lieberman will want to dive into this mess, given the fact that he previously wanted to know why it was that Cooney asked a right-wing think tank to sue the Bush Administration so that a global warming report issued by the government would be invalidated. Send Joe an email and ask him if Andy Card ever responded to his request from 2003, and see what Lieberman is going to do about this now.

Steve :: 6:21 AM :: Comments (3) :: TrackBack (2) :: Digg It!