The Spectacle Blog

CEI Suing NASA Over Climate Stonewall

By on 5.27.10 | 10:57AM

This morning in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the Competitive Enterprise Institute is filing suit against NASA, calling the erstwhile space agency to account for its nearly three-year stonewall of access to internal documents exposing an abuse of taxpayer funds to advance the global warming agenda.

Along the way to this point, we have begun revealing how NASA is running a third-party advocacy website out of NASA facilities, at taxpayer expense, to assail "skeptics" and promote the highly suspect basis for a specific policy agenda. This campaign also helped to elevate the particular fiefdom in question (James Hansen's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, or GISS) in terms of budget and stature. It has also elevated the scientists involved, professionally, at the expense of the taxpayer they are working to stick with the biggest economic intervention in our history (one I detail in my new book "Power Grab").

In this process, if only thanks to pressure on NASA after a December 2009 news story about their games, we have already obtained important emails among 2,000 or so pages released. These include an admission to USA Today's weather editor that NASA GISS is just a modeling office, using the temperature record of ...CRU, the ClimateGate outfit. That means their "independent temperature record" is actually a recapitulation of one that ...doesn't exist, but was withdrawn as a result of ClimateGate when the custodians admitted they actually lost all original data.

So whether the CRU claims were actually made up, as seems entirely plausible reading that crowd's own nasty anti-scientific campaign in their own words, it is as good as made up, meaning non-existent, for any legal or scientific purpose. So we already know that two of the four supposed "independent temperature records" are down the drain. And they're the only two subjected to anything resembling scrutiny.

Also along the way, in recent months we won on administrative appeal after NASA denied that documents created and held on NASA assets were really agency records, if editing and managing a third-party activist and advocacy site, RealClimate.org. NASA originally denied access to the records (which they are still withholding) on the grounds that taxpayer-funded scientists were actually moonlighting and so the documents were not really the government's property.

Our suit seeks to finally compel production of these records, among other documents the public paid for, are owed access to, but for years have been denied.

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