Friday, March 21, 2008

PM, Conservatives & Langley MP Warawa Provoke UCFV Scientists "concerned about the apparent anti-science stance of the Canadian government"

LFP EDITOR: The following "Open letter" to the Editor was sent to PM Harper, Conservative MPs and news media like the Chilliwack Times . Does this mean scientists and Phd's and professors may re-consider voting Conservative?

An open letter to: The Right Hon. Stephen Harper Prime Minister of Canada, The Hon. Chuck Strahl MP, Chilliwack-Fraser Canyon, Ed Fast MP, Abbotsford, Russ Hiebert MP, South Surrey-White Rock-Cloverdale, Randy Kamp MP, Pitt Meadows-Maple Ridge-Mission, Mark Warawa MP, Langley.

As scientists within the Faculty of Science at the University College of the Fraser Valley, we (the undersigned) are increasingly concerned about the apparent anti-science stance of the Canadian government.

Over the past year, a number of events have transpired that have provoked our collective unease:

- May 2007: In a pamphlet sent to every home in Chilliwack, what appears to be an official government statement on the science of global warming notes that "Baird's plan is also notable for its focus on reducing air pollution, which arguably has a bigger negative impact on Canadians today than global warming ever will."

This is exactly the opposite of the consensus of climate scientists whose research shows how global warming, of our own making, represents the biggest danger yet to face humanity. Scientists are predicting that failure to act on global warming would probably lead to the ultimate extinction of most species on Earth, with the survival of our own species not assured.

- Jan 2008: Although Canadian scientists involved in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) share in the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore, Canadian government representatives refuse to meet with them.

- Jan 2008: Canada's nuclear watchdog, Linda Keen, is fired for shutting down a reactor she finds to be in clear breach of safety requirements.

- Jan 2008: When scientists at Environment Canada try to communicate the science of global warming to tax-paying Canadians, they are "muzzled."

- Feb 2008: The position of Science Advisor is eliminated completely, indicating that there is no interest in Ottawa in hearing any additional research results related to climate change or other science issues.
While we understand that some of you may--at a very personal level--not accept or respect the scientific process or our nation's scientists, we believe that Canadians at large do. On behalf of your constituents, we urge you to reconsider some of your more extreme decisions and allow science to have a voice in our nation's government.
(Signed by:)
Chris Bertram (PhD), Kinesiology and Physical Education, Jason Brandenburg (PhD), Kinesiology and Physical Education, Diane Burton (BSc), Biology, Tim Cooper (PhD), Physics, Christine Dalton (MSc), Biology, Nigel Dance (PhD), Chemistry, David Fenske (PhD), Chemistry, Graham Fletcher (PhD), Kinesiology and Physical Education, Michael Gaetz (PhD), Kinesiology and Physical Education, Beth Gillespie (MSc), Biology, Derek Harnett (PhD), Physics, Carmen Herman (BSc), Physics, Barbara Moon (PhD), Biology, Rose Morrison (MSc P.Ag.), Agriculture, Alison Pritchard Orr (MSc), Kinesiology and Physical Education, Greg Schlitt (PhD), Mathematics, Lesley Spier (PhD), Chemistry, Tony Stea (PhD), Biology, Erik Talvila (PhD), Mathematics, Norm Taylor (BSc), Physics, Steve Thomas (PhD), Biology , Jane Webb (BSc), Chemistry, Debbie Wheeler (PhD), Biology, Ron Wilen (PhD), Biology, Leslie Wood (MSc), Biology, Rob Woodside (PhD), Physics

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