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See, hear, say no evil: #Climate #science disappearing from USG websites

January 11th, 2018 · 5 Comments

Within seconds of the outrageous nightmare scenario being announced as reality, scientists around the world started to mobilize to capture key science information and data from US government websites to maintain knowledge in what some suspected would be a Dark Ages period. Some thought this is absurd, that the Trump-istas just wouldn’t go there.

They’ve been going there. By mid 2017, thousands of climate references had disappeared from US government websites.

In the intervening months, the climate zombies have extended their reach and extended the darkness.

The Environmental Data & Governance Initiative has just released a report Changing the Digital Climate documenting “how climate change web content is being censored under the Trump Administration”. As Vice put it, Trump is hiding climate change.

Anyone looking at the official websites of the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Energy, or the White House might be under the impression that climate change isn’t a threat.

That’s because the Trump Administration has been systematically scrubbing its online references to climate change,

This isn’t an issue of ‘just’ Polluting Pruitt at EPA or Zinke at EPA, but is one of the few things that Team Trump looks to be effective at across the board.

the words “climate change” and “carbon” have been stripped from government websites across a wide range of agencies, including the departments of Health and Human Services, Transportation, the Interior, Energy and State, the report found. They have been replaced with vaguer terms like “sustainability” and “emissions.”

The group also found a wide swath of alterations to climate change webpages.

  • The White House no longer lists climate change as a priority.
  • EPA, along with the departments of State and Energy, removed language related to U.S. international obligations to address climate change.
  • Hundreds of pages at the EPA site that were designed to help local and state governments mitigate the effects of climate change have been removed.
  • The Interior Department scrubbed a website for tribal climate programs of the word “climate change.”
  • The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences dropped a link to an educational fact sheet about climate change and human health.
  • the Bureau of Land Management altered and removed language and links about climate change, renewable energy and the overall mission of the agency and took down its climate change webpage without replacing it.

When it comes to climate science:
“We’re sorry, that page can’t be found.”

Every day is pretty good until we remember that these destructive fossil fools are in control of the U.S. government. And, from promoting polluting fuels to damaging the development of science to reducing data collection to disappearing basic science from government websites, Team Trump is choosing to #ActOnClimate: to act to make the climate situation worse.


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5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 John Egan // Jan 12, 2018 at 12:49 am

    Although I am not pleased with the censorship of climate change data by the Trump administration, I am not surprised. You should not be either.

    Any hint of ‘surprise’. Disgust that these anti-science, anti-humanity kakistocrats have such power.

    One of the reasons that I became an out-and-out climate skeptic was the repeated refrain, “The debate is over.” Such a chorus was, for me, in complete contradiction of the corpus of western inquiry and, specifically, the scientific method.

    You really play so many games … “debate is over” is true, in some senses, even as within science almost everything is fought over. However, if you wish to challenge basic knowledge, the burden of evidence is higher. When it comes to climate change, ‘the debate is over’ in terms of the basics:
    – Climate is changing — warming
    – This is outside the spectrum of past million years/so of change
    – There is link between GHG and warming
    – Humanity is driving the warming
    The above is pretty much ‘debate is over’ territory in terms of basic facts. Want to argue about speed/nature of warming with science. That debate is open for evidence-based arguments.
    Want to fight about how much outside the spectrum, that debate is (or seems to be) open for evidence-based arguments.
    Want to debate nature of GHG and warming, sensitivity factors, that debate is open for evidence-based arguments.
    Want to debate whether humanity is responsible for more than warming (e.g., natural would be cooling without human impacts) or just the majority of warming, that debate is open for evidence-based arguments.
    “Debate is over” is that you want to ‘debate’, come to the table with an incredibly serious hypothesis supported by pretty serious evidence or, well, debate is over when it comes to denialist propaganda. (For difference between skepticism and denialism.)

    The overwhelming politicization of climate research – with no better example than the repeated attacks on Dr. Judith Curry –

    Pretty impressive that you wish to argue that “politicization of climate research” is somehow totally from the “science” side rather than dealing with minor little things like Exxon-Mobil and others’ decades-long efforts to undermine, confuse, distort, defund, attack, etc … climate science research. Not, the ‘Politicization’ is “repeated attacks on Curry”.

    Oh, poor Judith … this seems to be based on the (false) assertion that she is some innocent who (a) hasn’t gone after others, (b) hasn’t promoted distorted / outright incorrect material, and (c) has engaged honestly in science (which includes recognizes/engaging/learning when wrong).

    As to attacks, you mean vicious things like this trying to hold her to account for errors and misrepresentations? Or, this ‘vicious’ engagement on Twitter: Or …

    allowed for no possibility of dissent. It played out most viciously in the near-strangulation of publication and presentation by academics with views outside of the accepted mainstream.

    How about that material that plays fast and lose with evidence and/or has errors (in calculations/such) have a hard time getting published in reputable publications in any field.

    The litany of those who have repeated the mantra, “The debate is over” include Barack Obama, Al Gore, Bernie Sanders, David Suzuki, Bill McKibben, The Guardian, The Los Angeles Times, etc., etc.

    And this website –

    The Consensus Project? What an oxymoron!

    Yet again, climate activists have shown absolute political ineptitude. When you try to silence those who express opinions differing from yours – even to the point of arguing that climate “denial” should be criminalized – you shouldn’t be surprised when the tables get turned.

    Yet again, you blame the scientists and those fighting for truthful engagement and action — even if you are right about ineptly or poorly — for the problems rather than the people creating/causing the problem.

  • 2 John Egan // Jan 16, 2018 at 9:43 am

    Adam –

    You really – – really – – do not get it.

    Doubling down on all your positions – as you have done above – is like American tourists in Guatemala shouting English louder.

    Although it may not be for you, for most of the electorate in the U.S. and Europe, climate change is a second-tier issue. (Meteor Blades really seethes when I say this.)

    The past decade of election results in multi-part systems seems to confirm this. Although Green parties surged in the 1990s, since 2010 they have stalled and even lost ground. Not everywhere, every election – but overall.

    In Austria, the Green Party was voted out in the recent election that produced a government with far-right ministers. In Sweden the Green Party is on the cusp of missing the 4% threshold in the 2018 election. Meanwhile, the far-right Sweden Democrats poll around 18%. In the Netherlands, the Green Party did expand its vote share, but via the mass exodus from the Dutch Labour Party. The net was a significant shrinkage of the left vote with gains accruing to Geert Wilders’ PVV.

    Here’s where you and most climate activists really do not get it. You lack the ability to compromise and to form coalitions. For you it is either all or nothing. Which means you will likely get nothing. Your boo-hooing of Dr. Curry is a perfect example. Not to mention your antipathy towards me.

    In the U.S. two-party system, for better or worse you have to win over the middle. The climate left has not only been pathetic in doing so, but they act almost identically as the WCTU did a century ago. A holy, moral crusade that is off-putting to all but the true believers.

    But it is more than just the political failures of the climate left, per se. The climate left has fractured the left in the U.S. and throughout Europe – in the face of the far-right onslaught. Sorry, but for most Americans, jobs, housing costs, quality schools, and access to medical care take precedence over climate – even if they tell pollsters they consider climate change a serious problem.

    Yes, that is why I blame you and other climate activists for the very problem you bring up in this post. It is YOUR actions that have gotten us to this point. Sad thing is – you are totally unable to see it.

  • 3 John Egan // Jan 16, 2018 at 9:44 am

    PS – Your use of Dr. Curry’s first name is classic sexism.

    Lovely. Yet another one of your attacks.

    Actually, it is like saying Donald Trump without the title … I think that she has disgraced her academic title(s) through deception which, a la Trump comment, has nothing to do with sexism but about how to engage.. Here is just a small taste from an acquaintance more engaged with her.

    * Swears she isn’t political, but signs off on an intro to a CEI paper, says she didn’t know it was CEI at the time, but has no problem with that:
    * Says she’s agnostic on how to alter science policy processes to her liking, but has specifically called on the Trump administration to red team the national climate assessment, crack open endangerment finding and revisit social costs of carbon:
    * She has no idea how the policies she’s seeking to change actually work or how agency scientists do their jobs:
    * She thinks her ridiculous Tucker Carlson interview involved fair questions:
    * She started listing other fields of science that have been “corrupted” through policy relevancy.
    * she warned scientists who said the Trump administration would start censoring climate science that they were conspiracy theorists:

    Consider that last in terms of the post that you are commenting on …
    and the very start of your comments to it.

  • 4 John Egan // Jan 16, 2018 at 10:29 am

    No! It is not another attack.

    If you disagree with Dr. Curry – – fine.
    But don’t go around calling her Judith when she has the highest academic credentials and was former chair of her department at Georgia Tech.

    Should I remind you that use of first name was also a form of diminution of African Americans in the Jim Crow South? A white child would call a 50-year old African American woman “Martha” – but would have never used a first name for a middle-aged white woman. In fact, the child would have been severely punished for doing so.

    So, perhaps you should check your prejudices at the door. Your language is sexist – regardless of the level of disagreement. And, no, she has not disgraced her degrees. I would shudder to live in a world where there was complete and total academic agreement.

  • 5 John Egan // Jan 16, 2018 at 10:43 am

    And –
    You might consider Googling Dutch politician Thierry Baudet. He is the leader of the upstart Forum for Democracy party.

    Baudet is younger, more photogenic and less toxic than Wilders. He is highly educated, cultured, multilingual, and extremely right-wing. The Forum has gone from getting 1.8% and two seats in last year’s election to 15 seats in recent polls – a massive surge. Nor has his support come exclusively from siphoning off Wilders’ votes. The PVV has dropped only 5 – so the net gain in less than a year for the far right has been 8. For a cumulative two-party total of 29! Meanwhile, the parties of the left – including the Green Party – have been stagnant.

    Yessiree! You relish torching all who don’t fall completely in line – forgetting that when push comes to shove, you will ultimately need their support. Might I suggest that you seek areas of agreement with people like Dr. Curry if you wish to have any chance of moving forward with climate initiatives?

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