Climate research has been under attack for decades in the United States, but the current political environment poses an even greater threat to climate scientists.
Politicians who deny the scientific consensus on climate change, and those who have a history of harassing climate scientists, lead numerous departments and agencies in the current administration.
They use their positions to advance their political agenda, stifling climate research and intimidating scientists inside and outside of the government. Among their actions: censoring scientific information, proposing to defund climate research, reducing access to climate data, and demoting and reassigning climate scientists to prevent them from working on climate issues.
Anti-science individuals and organizations are empowered by the administration’s actions. As a result, they’re stepping up their attacks on climate researchers, both personally and through the legal system.
What’s at Stake
An administration so focused on undermining science and attacking researchers who don’t agree with their political views is dangerous and hugely detrimental to the scientific endeavor. Researchers now fear talking about their work with the media and the public, and they don’t speak out on climate change out of fear of retaliation or being harassed.
When scientists are unable to do or discuss their research it limits what we know about the planet, and puts humans and the environment at risk.
How We’re Taking Action
We protect the scientific endeavor by defending climate scientists against legal harassment. We also provide basic legal education to scientists, so they know their rights and how to respond to an attack. And we call out actions against science and scientists — because knowledge is power.
Essential Reading & Resources
In the new “post-truth” political environment, scientists must be prepared for politically-motivated attacks. We produced this pocket guide to educate scientists on the legal risks they may face so they can prepare and protect themselves.
This guide concerns only U.S. laws, and should not be taken as individual legal advice. If you are facing any of the situations described in this guide, or one not covered here, email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us using our web form to set up a free consultation with an attorney who can discuss the specific laws and options that pertain to your case.
Please check back; this program will launch in early 2018.