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Monday, March 16, 2015

Climate skeptic’s fossil fuel funding puts spotlight on journal conflict policies

By David Malakoff
Science Magazine
Originally published February 22, 2015

Here is an excerpt:

“We’re concerned about the lack of transparency in science… and a possible ethical breach in not disclosing potential conflicts of interest in an area with important public policy implications,” says Kert Davies, Executive Director of the CIC in Alexandria, Virginia. (Soon’s work, he notes, is routinely cited by politicians opposed to government action on climate, and widely disputed by mainstream climate researchers.)

Davies, a former Greenpeace staffer, helped spur the effort to use the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain the documents that detail Soon’s funding sources. The law applies to the Smithsonian because it is a quasi-government entity (it operates the CfA in cooperation with the Harvard College Observatory). Greenpeace has been using such FOIA requests to document Soon’s sources of funding for years. Last week, Davies began providing recently-obtained documents to media outlets, including ScienceInsider,  leading to stories in the New York Times, Nature, The Guardian, the Boston Globe, and Inside Climate News.

The entire article is here.