Attack on European Commission chief scientific adviser’s position cause for alarm

Anne Glover speaking at the Friends of Europe - EU 2050: Europe's Tech Revolution. (Credit: OB-Pic 043/Flickr via EurActiv)

Political ecologists like science… when it confirms their views. When it contradicts them, rather than changing their minds they often attempt to change the science.

As a typical example of such an attitude towards science, nine prominent political green organizations, including Greenpeace, recently wrote an open letter to the new European Commission (EC) President Jean-Claude Juncker asking him to “scrap” the post of EC Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA), alleging that this post “is fundamentally problematic as it concentrates too much influence in one person, and undermines in-depth scientific research.”

The post is actually held by Professor Anne Glover who is unafraid to speak out in defense of scientific facts. Obviously the green organizations do not appreciate scientists who speak the truth. In contrast the UK government website on scientific advisors begins with the phrase “every government department has a chief scientific adviser (CSA).” Why then should the EC be deprived of scientific advice?

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In reply to this letter, Sir Paul Nurse, the president of the Royal Society, said, “there will always be those who attack the messenger because they do not like the message but when that message is backed up by the scientific evidence, politicians should be smart enough to listen to the independent scientific experts.”

The organization Sense about science, and the European Plant Science Organisation which represents plant scientists at 227 publicly funded research institutes and universities, and a consortium of medical research organizations also wrote to ask Juncker to keep and strengthen the CSA role.

Read the full, original article: Mr. Juncker, do not scrap science!

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