Debating the Royal Society's Public Intervention

Sun, 2006-10-15 07:47Richard Littlemore
Richard Littlemore's picture

Debating the Royal Society's Public Intervention

Here's a great string on the Prometheus blog in which Bob Ward (the former communications director for the Royal Society) defends the case for the RS letter calling ExxonMobil to task for helping to misrepresent climate science.

Ward's most trenchant interlocutor is Roger Pielke, Jr., one of the more scientifically accomplished and articulate industry-friendly experts on this file. The to-and-for is excellent, but if you aren't otherwise inclined to get all the way to the bottom of the string, Bob Ward currently has the last word - a word worth reading:

As I think I mentioned in a previous posting, the sole aim of writing to ExxonMobil was to register with them, for a second time, the complaint about misrepresentations of the scientific evidence. Of course, the Society's concern was about the potential impact of misleading statements, by anybody, on the public and policy-makers. If this falls within the working definition that you employ for political actions, then so be it. However, I think some of the other postings have suggested that my motive was partisan in some way eg anti-ExxonMobil. That I strongly refute, and as I said, I have similarly criticised Greenpeace for misleading statements that it has made on climate change (specifically citing individual weather events, such as the 2003 European heatwave, as evidence of climate change).

If this seems an unreasonable activity for a Royal Society to undertake, then I'm not sure what you are suggesting as an alternative. Do companies and lobby groups have a right to misrepresent scientific evidence, for whatever reason, unchallenged by science academies? Or do you think that such challenges are allowable, but should only be made by organisations other than the Royal Society?


Comments

Hi,

  
Hi,

Thank you for the valuable information provided by you.I appreciat the team work done by your team. It is of great use.

Austin.

Drug Intervention

 

"If this seems an unreasonable activity for a Royal Society to undertake, then I'm not sure what you are suggesting as an alternative. Do companies and lobby groups have a right to misrepresent scientific evidence, for whatever reason, unchallenged by science academies? Or do you think that such challenges are allowable, but should only be made by organisations other than the Royal Society?"

While I agree with the Royal Society's stand on global climate change they are as guilty as Exxon and other large carbon emitters in their public statements in other areas. A good example is their attitude and misrepresentation of the science in their (and Tony Blair's) promotion of genetically modified food. It is increasingly being shown that there is good scientific evidence that all is not well in the world of GMO's. However, the Royal Scociety is at the forefront of pushing the agenda of the Multinational Agrichemical companies.

Ian Forrester

<b>. It is increasingly being shown that there is good scientific evidence that all is not well in the world of GMO's.</b>

 

Link?  Proof?

Here is a good link to the role that the Royal Society has played in the GMO debate: http://www.gmwatch.org/profile1.asp?PrId=113 The web site gmwatch.org is a very good site. I put it as the GM equivalent to realclimate.org. They identify a number of astroturf groups who are active in the GM debate. They also have a very good profile section on these groups and individuals who are promulgating misinformation on the “benefits” of GM technology. There are very strong parallels on the MO’s of the climate change deniers and the GM promoters There is an interesting UN conference coming up next month in Nairobi, Kenya entitled the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Kenya is a leader in trying to force GM technology on Africa. There is a strong belief that the GMO companies will be trying to get some mileage at this conference. More information on this conference can be found at: http://www.gmwatch.org/archive2.asp?arcid=7128 Ian Forrester

As of right now the National Academies of the US says there is "no adverse side effects".

http://www.nap.edu/openbook/0309092094/html/1.html 

That doesn't mean there can't be, but as of right now there is no proof that they are bad.  I have a hard time believing the national academies of both countries are in on a conspiracy.   Biotech is what I do for a living.  Although I don't specialize in how dietary stuff affects your health I will try and look this website over.

So far I don't recognize anyone on the about page:

http://www.gmwatch.org/p1temp.asp?pid=2&page=1

 

 

There are numerous adverse effects attributable to the introduction of GMO's. I do not wish to highjack this thread so i will send you supporting infomation via e-mail.

 

Ian Forrester