Climate Dogma and the Firing of a Skeptic
Dr. Nickolas Drapela used to work at Oregon State University, but no more. This well-loved senior instructor in the department of chemistry, author of textbooks, and award winning teacher was fired without explanation, apparently without reason.
But, a quick search soon reveals that Dr. Drapela was guilty of a science sin–he questioned the politically correct consensus on global climate change. The story is eerily similar to what is detailed in Free to Think, the book about what happened after AITSE president Dr. Crocker dared to give a lecture where she outlined the evidence for and, dare we say it, against evolution. Academic awards were overlooked. Administrators were evasive. Supportive students were ignored. There was no warning–both Dr. Drapela and Dr. Crocker were just shut down. But, like Dr. Crocker, they can’t shut Dr. Drapela up. He will doubtless continue to give public talks, be heard on the radio, and write about the subject.
So, what are the administrators at OSU so afraid of? Objective science? Academic freedom? Open minds? Or could it be loss of the income stream they receive for conducting research in climate science (~90 million/yr)? After all, alarmism brings in cash; realism might not. As Cambridge professor Michael Kelly said, “The interpretation of the observational science has been consistently over-egged to produce alarm.” Perhaps the idea is that the best motivator for change is fear. Unfortunately, experience is showing it is more likely to produce skepticism. Especially now in the digital age when those who dare publicly doubt the politically correct consensus cannot be silenced by merely depriving them of their jobs.
Please note, AITSE does not take a position on climate change, only on the silencing of scientists. Next month we will feature an excellent essay contributed by Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, a climate scientist who subscribes to the view that global warming is real and requires drastic action on our parts. Dr. Hayhoe is a scientist of integrity who has been at the receiving end of threats and intimidation as a result of her views. We look forward to her article.