NASA internal investigation finds press-office climate distortion
An investigation by NASA’s inspector general has found that the agency’s press office repeatedly distorted climate-change research findings and limited its scientists’ access to the media between 2004 and 2006. NASA scientist James Hansen first spoke out about the press-office distortion to major news outlets two years ago, leading the agency to eventually alter its press policy. Before the change, however, NASA’s press office “managed the topic of climate change in a manner that reduced, marginalized, or mischaracterized climate change science made available to the general public,” the IG’s report said. The report also found that “news releases in the areas of climate change suffered from inaccuracy, factual insufficiency, and scientific dilution.” In one instance, press office folks canceled a press conference on a mission monitoring ozone pollution and climate change because it was too close to the 2004 presidential election. The report also said that the climate-info tinkering appeared to be limited to the agency’s press office and likely wasn’t linked to the agency’s top officials or the White House.