NASA Unzips No-Talking Policy on its Scientists

NASA Administrator Michael D. Griffin issued a policy on “commitment to openness.” after two of its top climate scientist complained of being gagged by political operatives in the agency’s press. The policy ensures NASA scientists and engineers are free to discuss their work in public as long as they make clear they are speaking for themselves and not for the agency.

The agency came under fire when James E. Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies said the Bush administration had tried to stop him from speaking out after he gave a lecture in December calling for prompt reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases linked to global warming. Other scientists also expressed concern when political appointees altered news releases and Internet presentations without their consent.
NASA Administrator Michael D. Griffin issued a policy on “commitment to openness.” after two of its top climate scientist complained of being gagged by political operatives in the agency’s press. The policy ensures NASA scientists and engineers are free to discuss their work in public as long as they make clear they are speaking for themselves and not for the agency.

The agency came under fire when James E. Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies said the Bush administration had tried to stop him from speaking out after he gave a lecture in December calling for prompt reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases linked to global warming. Other scientists also expressed concern when political appointees altered news releases and Internet presentations without their consent.

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