Upcoming Climate-Change Disaster Movie Provokes Silliness

“The Day After Tomorrow,” a big-budget climate-change disaster flick directed by Roland Emmerich (creator of such visionary fare as “Independence Day” and the 1998 “Godzilla” remake), is due for release on May 28, and it’s got folks on both sides of the global-warming debate all atwitter. Fearing that the scenario in the movie — wherein climate change, to the dismay of some Cheney-esque politicians, all of a sudden causes blizzards, tsunamis, and much bad acting — might provoke a panicked public to question why the Bush administration isn’t doing more to address climate change, the top press officer at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center sent an email on April 1 to several agency scientists and officers forbidding them to discuss the movie with the press. A scientist offended at being muzzled promptly leaked the email to The New York Times, making the agency look silly. NASA backpedaled last week, saying its scientists are free to discuss the film if asked to do so. Meanwhile, some enviros are fretting that the movie’s absurd premise will discredit climate-change science altogether.