Thursday, May 22, 2014

North Carolina Wants To Nominate Climate Change Deniers To Study Sea Level Rise

Morally, these people are like a parent who chooses not to believe the doctor when they say their child needs medical care, because they want to use the money to buy new furniture.


Climate deniers could soon overtake a North Carolina commission created to study the effects of sea level rise. The nominations are only the latest blow from conservatives that have done their best to make climate change seem inconsequential to the coastal state. In the process, the Republican-controlled legislature managed to bury a key projection of the North Carolina Coastal Resources Commission panel: The state’s shores will face more than three feet of sea level rise within the next century.


Once considered a scientific panel, the commission has moved in a more conservative and industry-friendly direction ever since the North Carolina legislature removed many of the actual scientists. In 2013, Gov. Pat McCrory appointed Frank Gorham, a man whose day job is overseeing his oil and gas investment company and who thinks no scientist “is smart enough to say [sea level] is going to rise 39 inches.”

The panel’s three-foot-rise projection offended the Republican legislature enough in 2012 that it voted officially to ignore it. Hoping to avoid a repeat, the panel will now only look at sea level 30 years into the future. North Carolina’s war on science hasn’t ended there, either. There was another incident where the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources was caught deleting public resources about climate change.


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