To remove words such as “climate change”

This happened.

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.

So Trump gets to control the wording used by independent scientists who don’t work for the government but do contribute research to government agencies. That’s pretty stunning.

The Guardian reported earlier this month that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) has been censored from using the term “climate change.” They have been directed to use the phrase “weather extremes” instead.

Scientists have feared the Trump administration’s efforts to scale back and undermine climate change initiatives. On August 7, The New York Times reported that scientists from 13 federal agencies leaked a climate change report for fear it would be censored or its findings would be prevented from release. The Trump administration is politicizing and manipulating scientists’ work and research to better fit its own political agenda, which favors industries that profit from suppressing climate change science.

Good plan. By the same token the Trump administration should suppress information about approaching hurricanes for the sake of industries that profit from selling hot dogs on the beach.

13 Responses to “To remove words such as “climate change””