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Global Climate Change DigestArchives of the
Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999

FROM VOLUME 11, NUMBER 4, APRIL-MAY 1998

NEWS...
OREGON INSTITUTE PETITION


Item #d98may96

A minor uproar among some scientists and environmental groups was sparked by a petition circulated to thousands of U.S. scientists in early March 1998 that urges the government to reject the Kyoto Protocol. Organized in conjunction with the Marshall Institute, the petition was accompanied by an eight-page attack on climate change research authored by Arthur Robinson (a chemist at the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine) and others. The controversy arose because the document has the appearance of a reprint from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and the mailing included a cover letter from Frederick Seitz, a former president of the National Academy of Sciences. A few weeks later, the Academy issued a statement dissociating itself from the petition, making it clear that the paper has never been published in its Proceedings and that the petition runs counter to published positions of the Academy on climate change. (A new academy report on climate change is due soon.) Robinson told Science magazine that the article used the Proceedings as a model to put it in a familiar format for scientists, that he plans to submit it for peer-reviewed publication soon, and that 15,000 scientists have signed the petition.

See Science, p. 195, Apr. 10 and p. 509, Apr. 24, and these Web sites: http://www.oism.org; http://www2.nas.edu/nas/.

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