December 14, 2016

Trump Transition Team Disavows DOE Questionnaire—Must Go Further to Signal Respect for Science

Statement from Andrew Rosenberg, Union of Concerned Scientists

WASHINGTON (December 14, 2016)—President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team has disavowed a questionnaire asking for names of Department of Energy employees working on climate change, calling it unauthorized. This disavowal, while welcome, doesn’t go far enough to protect public servants and the important work of climate science, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).

Below is a statement by Andrew Rosenberg, director of the Center for Science and Democracy at UCS.

“It’s great to see that the Trump transition team is admitting that demanding a list of employees was a mistake. This action was clearly inappropriate, and could intimidate Department of Energy employees and dissuade them from the important work they do. But the transition needs to do more than just distance itself from this tactic. Governor Perry and President-Elect Trump must clearly commit to respect the independence of government scientists, refrain from targeting civil servants for working on climate issues, and continue to collect and publish data that is essential to protecting public health and the environment. Everyone on the transition team needs to know that this kind of action is unacceptable.

“The swift and strong negative response to this incident should signal to the Trump administration that the scientific community is organized, engaged and watching closely to make sure that independent science is respected and protected.” 

The Union of Concerned Scientists puts rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet's most pressing problems. Joining with people across the country, we combine technical analysis and effective advocacy to create innovative, practical solutions for a healthy, safe, and sustainable future.