But what about the independence of scientists?
What about it? You see, William Gray (as I have noted before) is the world renowned meteorologist from Colorado State University, famous for his hurricane season predictions. He’s also a global warming skeptic. And one for whom the university tried to curtail funding for recently:
By pioneering the science of seasonal hurricane forecasting, William Gray turned a university far from the stormy seas into a hurricane research mecca.
But last year, the long-term relationship between Gray and Colorado State University, where he has worked for nearly half a century, nearly unraveled in an episode that highlights the politically charged atmosphere that surrounds the global warming debate.
University officials told Gray that handling media inquiries related to his forecasting required too much time and detracted from efforts to promote other professors’ work.
Gray, who has emerged as a leading voice of skepticism about global warming, reacted hotly, firing off a memo to Dick Johnson, head of CSU’s Department of Atmospheric Sciences, and others. He didn’t buy the too-much-media reasoning.
“This is obviously a flimsy excuse and seems to me to be a cover for the Department’s capitulation to the desires of some (in their own interest) who want to reign (sic) in my global warming and global warming-hurricane criticisms,” Gray wrote in the memo obtained by the Chronicle.
Gray initially declined to speak about the issue. But on Tuesday, Gray acknowledged the dispute.
“You see, so many people in our department make a living off the global warming threat,” he said. “So I think that’s part of why they came to me.”
Since last year, he said, the university has “backtracked” on its position.
CSU officials said late last week that they intend to support the release of Gray’s forecasts as long as they continue to be co-authored by Phil Klotzbach, a former student of Gray’s who earned his doctorate last summer, and as long as Klotzbach remains at CSU.
Gray, an emeritus professor at CSU who has taught dozens of graduate students who populate the National Hurricane Center and other research institutions, has become increasingly vocal in his skepticism about climate change, saying the planet is warming due to natural causes.
Other than once again noting the fact that the concept of scientific “consensus” on global warming is pure crap, I have to ask this question; is the row over funding at Colorado State related to his skepticism of global warming. And if it is, would not the global warming believers be crying foul if, say, a scientist who believed in global warming had his fundingcurtailed by a Republican administration?