Political weaponizing of uncertainty at the Interior Dept.

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Political weaponizing of uncertainty at the Interior Dept.

Postby TheVat on March 2nd, 2020, 2:32 pm 

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/02/clim ... nvironment

(some clips, for those with paywall issues)

An official at the Interior Department embarked on a campaign that has inserted misleading language about climate change — including debunked claims that increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is beneficial — into the agency’s scientific reports, according to documents reviewed by The New York Times.

The misleading language appears in at least nine reports, including environmental studies and impact statements on major watersheds in the American West that could be used to justify allocating increasingly scarce water to farmers at the expense of wildlife conservation and fisheries....

The wording, known internally as the “Goks uncertainty language” based on Mr. Goklany’s nickname, inaccurately claims that there is a lack of consensus among scientists that the earth is warming. In Interior Department emails to scientists, Mr. Goklany pushed misleading interpretations of climate science, saying it “may be overestimating the rate of global warming, for whatever reason;” climate modeling has largely predicted global warming accurately. The final language states inaccurately that some studies have found the earth to be warming, while others have not.

He also instructed department scientists to add that rising carbon dioxide — the main force driving global warming — is beneficial because it “may increase plant water use efficiency” and “lengthen the agricultural growing season.” Both assertions misrepresent the scientific consensus that, overall, climate change will result in severe disruptions to global agriculture and significant reductions in crop yields.

Scientists and policy experts say that, by embedding an inaccurate sense of uncertainty about scientific findings in its documents, the Trump administration is advancing its policy of weakening environmental rules and reallocating vast quantities of water to farming and irrigation, even though climate change projections show that use to be unsustainable. Last month, President Trump signed a memo in California relaxing regulations that have limited the flow of water to irrigate the Central Valley’s big farms.

“Highlighting uncertainty is consistent with the biggest attacks on the climate science community,” said Jacquelyn Gill, an associate professor of paleoecology and plant ecology at the University of Maine. “They’re emphasizing discussions of uncertainty to the point where people feel as though we can’t actually make decisions” based on the research.

But one example. Hundreds more available...
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Re: Political weaponizing of uncertainty at the Interior Dep

Postby Serpent on March 2nd, 2020, 4:37 pm 

I don't suppose there is any aspect of public life and communication that's free of the AR propaganda machine.
It makes Goebbels' operation look rinky-dink.
I wonder what comes next....
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