Responding to pressure from the energy industry, the Bush administration is seeking to remove the U.S scientist who heads the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Robert Watson, chief scientist at the World Bank, has been the unpaid chair of the IPCC for nearly six years. In that capacity, he has been outspoken in his belief that human activity is contributing to global warming and must be altered to avert disaster. Now Watson’s term is expiring — and the State Department has decided not to re-nominate him. That decision has been heavily criticized by many influential scientists, who see Watson as all but irreplaceable, but has been welcomed by energy industry lobbyists and some Republican politicians, who claim Watson has an environmental ax to grind.
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