White House Pushes to Place Career Climate Deniers at NOAA

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is the federal agency that helps us understand climate science. It’s satellites, models, outlooks, and teams of scientists are what help us make sense of the world around us and also prepare for storms and the effects of climate change.

That’s why it was startling to learn that the White House appointed Ryan Maue to serve as NOAA’s head scientist– a meteorologist who has challenged connections between extreme weather and climate change. And as the DeSmog Blog added, Maue’s appointment follows the White House’s appointment last week of climate science denier David Legates as NOAA’s deputy assistant secretary of commerce for observation and prediction.

It Gets Worse: The White House has been actively working to recruit known climate critics to work at NOAA.

Why This Matters: As E&E News explained, these shakeups at NOAA “symbolize a coordinated effort to reshape NOAA’s senior leadership in the dusk of President Trump’s first term. Until now, the agency has remained relatively unscathed by the president’s embrace of conspiracy theories about climate change.” This is a move to instate climate deniers into the ranks of NOAA as career scientists, where they can maximize their damage to the agency. 

The Stakes: We’ve seen after a summer of wildfires, hurricanes, and a devastating derecho, we’re entirely unprepared for the escalating effects of climate change.

And we’re seeing new types of weather that we don’t yet understand, like “zombie storms” that suddenly pick up speed and destructive power after seemingly losing energy.

As it related to wildfires, we need more robust technology to help predict where fires might erupt. Just as we have a National Weather Service, we need a National Climate Service to better forecast and prepare the American people for climate disasters. However, if climate deniers are allowed to become career scientists at NOAA, it will hamper the ability of the agency to best serve the public.

Up Next

One Kiwi Thing: Prime Minister Ardern Wins Big on Progressive Platform

One Kiwi Thing: Prime Minister Ardern Wins Big on Progressive Platform

In New Zealand, the votes from their election over the weekend are tallied and Labour Party Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern notched a huge victory — the biggest for her Party since 1996.  She received a mandate with the support of a majority in Parliament, and delivered the first 30 seconds of her victory address was […]

Continue Reading 126 words
Coney Barrett’s Climate Controversy

Coney Barrett’s Climate Controversy

President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, created a bit of controversy during her nomination hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee last week when she called climate change itself “controversial.” 

Why This Matters:  Judge Barrett many questions with the same refrain — she refused to discuss her “policy” views on questions as obvious as do “poll watchers” who are armed intimidate voters, whether birth control should be decriminalized, or if same-sex marriage should be allowed.

Continue Reading 410 words
Heroine of the Week: Betty Reid Soskin, the Oldest Park Ranger in the U.S.

Heroine of the Week: Betty Reid Soskin, the Oldest Park Ranger in the U.S.

  This week we salute Betty Reid Soskin, who at 99 is the nation’s oldest park ranger.  She works at the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park in Richmond, California, and has since her mid-80s. She began her involvement while the park was still being planned.  Betty is Black and worked […]

Continue Reading 167 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.