U.S. Govt. May Be Squelching Scientist Over Arctic Oil

Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

Why is this all too believable? Bob Berwyn reports on the latest skirmish in the battle over Alaska offshore oil drilling for Summit County Citizens Voice:

Last summer’s Deepwater Horizon oil-drilling disaster in the Gulf of Mexico clearly showed the conflict between science, energy policy and politics, and the looming battle over drilling in Arctic waters will be no different, as a watchdog group claims that federal scientists are being muzzled and harassed over their efforts to disclose potential impacts of energy development in the fragile Arctic marine environment.

Dr. Charles Monnet, a senior federal scientist working the Arctic has been placed on administrative leave and is being investigated by the Interior Department’s Inspector General. Such inspections are not uncommon, but what’s unusual in this case is that the researcher says he has no idea what the investigators are looking for.

But a Washington, D.C.-based watchdog and whistle-blower protection group, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, says the investigation is designed to interfere with scientific research that points out the dangers of Arctic drilling. In a scientific misconduct complaint filed last week, the group charged that Monnet is “being hounded in a political attempt to impugn his observations on polar bears’ vulnerability to retreating sea ice.”

“We think they’re nervous about his portfolio of science in the Arctic,” said PEER director Jeff Ruch, explaining that there’s enormous pressure to move ahead with offshore drilling in the region…

[continues at Summit County Citizens Voice]

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  • Jin The Ninja

    no surprise here. in the face of profits, capitalism leaves no room for science. no room for the environment. they will bleed the earth dry in the endless quest for black and green.  leaving us plebs with a desert wasteland.

    i am okay with that, AS LONG AS we get the mad max hairstyles….because you know, being cool is a top priority.

    • Anarchy Pony

      Well, if I get to tool around the wasteland with a mohawk and a blue heeler, that’s fine by me.

    • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

      You said it…shit…I’m only shocked and surprised that the guy hasn’t been found after a “suicide” or homeinvasion gone wrong, dead as a doornail in a way that seems perfectly innocent enough.

    • Simiantongue

      I’d make a kick ass Dr Dealgood. “Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls… Dyin’ time’s here.” You’re right it’s the hair. I got it pegged.

    • jasonpaulhayes

      Oil Reserves do fall under the category of National Security .. being that our entire Transportation System and our Military depend upon it. Not everything is a Capitalist Conspiracy, but it is true that a lot of scenarios are. Look at the bigger picture … Bush filled up and expanded our Domestic Strategic Oil Reserves while in office and it was for National Security. If for some reason during a War the OPEC supply lines were to be cut off we would depend upon the Strategic Oil Reserve for our defense and to keep our infrastructure going, its quite simple really.

      • Jin The Ninja

        Military-Industrial Complex- explicitly and implicitly infers a capitalist conspiracy.

        not to mention how the drilling will affect fragile arctic ecosystems, indigenous arctic peoples, and arctic sovereignty issues.

    • Redacted

      I’m former Army I got dibs on Brotherhood of Steel.

  • Anonymous

    no surprise here. in the face of profits, capitalism leaves no room for science. no room for the environment. they will bleed the earth dry in the endless quest for black and green.  leaving us plebs with a desert to wasteland.

    i am okay with that, AS LONG AS we get the mad max hairstyles….because you know, being cool is a top priority.

  • Old Soul

    Well, if I get to tool around the wasteland with a mohawk and a blue heeler, that’s fine by me.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    You said it…shit…I’m only shocked and surprised that the guy hasn’t been found after a “suicide” or homeinvasion gone wrong, dead as a doornail in a way that seems perfectly innocent enough.

  • Simiantongue

    I’d make a kick ass Dr Dealgood. “Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls… Dyin’ time’s here.” You’re right it’s the hair. I got it pegged.

  • Mamagriff50

    The oil companies have our government in their pocket..[nothing new], and what they want they get. Big oil always gets what it wants.

  • Mamagriff50

    The oil companies have our government in their pocket..[nothing new], and what they want they get. Big oil always gets what it wants.

  • http://twitter.com/jasonpaulhayes jasonpaulhayes

    Oil Reserves do fall under the category of National Security .. being that our entire Transportation System and our Military depend upon it. Not everything is a Capitalist Conspiracy, but it is true that a lot of scenarios are. Look at the bigger picture … Bush filled up and expanded our Domestic Strategic Oil Reserves while in office and it was for National Security. If for some reason during a War the OPEC supply lines were to be cut off we would depend upon the Strategic Oil Reserve for our defense and to keep our infrastructure going, its quite simple really.

  • Penguins4life

    Well if we start getting our oil from the arctic then how are we going to keep this war going? On top of that Im starting to think the BP oil spill was a big scam to get people scared of off shore drilling. I dunno but thats just me.

  • Penguins4life

    Well if we start getting our oil from the arctic then how are we going to keep this war going? On top of that Im starting to think the BP oil spill was a big scam to get people scared of off shore drilling. I dunno but thats just me.

  • Anonymous

    Military-Industrial Complex- explicitly and implicitly infers a capitalist conspiracy.

    not to mention how the drilling will affect fragile arctic ecosystems, indigenous arctic peoples, and arctic sovereignty issues.

  • Anon

    that’s the problem of not believing in conspiracy, the only time it is real is until someone becomes a victim of one

  • Anon

    that’s the problem of not believing in conspiracy, the only time it is real is until someone becomes a victim of one

  • jelyfish

    I’m calling bs on this story.  If you ever care to … pull up google maps and check the southern end of the Hudson Bay.  There you will find Polar Bear Provincial Park.  The nearby towns offer Polar Bear tours.

    If polar bears are that far south then hype that some polar bears my be displaced thousands of miles north seems disingenous.  This is and has been a bogus environmental ‘line in the sand’.  You should care more about your own water than this arctic oil crap.

    • Jin The Ninja

      it’s obvious you have no idea how far north hudson bay is.

  • jelyfish

    I’m calling bs on this story.  If you ever care to … pull up google maps and check the southern end of the Hudson Bay.  There you will find Polar Bear Provincial Park.  The nearby towns offer Polar Bear tours.

    If polar bears are that far south then hype that some polar bears my be displaced thousands of miles north seems disingenous.  This is and has been a bogus environmental ‘line in the sand’.  You should care more about your own water than this arctic oil crap.

  • Anonymous

    I’m former Army I got dibs on Brotherhood of Steel.

  • Anonymous

    it’s obvious you have no idea how far north hudson bay is.

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