NASA officials, under fire from several former astronauts for its work on global warming issues, on Wednesday denied that it endorses climate change theories and is instead fostering “cutting-edge” investigation into the controversial topic.
“NASA sponsors research into many areas of cutting-edge scientific inquiry, including the relationship between carbon dioxide and climate. As an agency, NASA does not draw conclusions and issue ‘claims’ about research findings. We support open scientific inquiry and discussion,” said NASA Chief Scientist Waleed Abdalati in a statement to Secrets.
On Tuesday, Secrets reported that nearly 50 former NASA officials wrote the Administrator Charles Bolden to demand that the world’s premier space agency stop backing global warming in the media.
But Abdalati said that the critics are wrong. Worse, he added, they want to shut down further study into the issue.
“Our Earth science programs provide many unique space-based observations and research capabilities to the scientific community to inform investigations into climate change, and many NASA scientists are actively involved in these investigations, bringing their expertise to bear on the interpretation of this information. We encourage our scientists to subject these results and interpretations to scrutiny by the scientific community through the peer-review process. After these studies have met the appropriate standards of scientific peer-review, we strongly encourage scientists to communicate these results to the public,” he said in a statement.
“If the authors of this letter disagree with specific scientific conclusions made public by NASA scientists, we encourage them to join the debate in the scientific literature or public forums rather than restrict any discourse,” added Abdalati.