I hope that Ms. Abramoff lands on her feet, and soon. We ignore her warnings at our own peril.

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*sarcasm on*

Official Guidance:

Scientists must at all times remain dispassionate and objective. All data, research, and conclusions will remain in the pages of our 23 peer-reviewed journals that almost nobody reads or cares about.

Scientists may do whatever they please in their free time as long as it is confined to their own home and preferably in a dark closet with their cell phone turned off.

It must be ensured, at all costs, that the public does not have any kind of emotional response to our findings that could affect a chain reaction resulting in public policy.

Going forward we would appreciate that everyone keep their head down and buried in the data.

*sarcasm off*

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"AGU is still reaching a verdict about Abramoff and Kalmus. But in the meantime, the actions of their own officials have sent a clear message that even during a climate emergency, there is still a right time and place to speak."

I wonder what right time and place to vocalize dire warnings will look like once the equatorial band is not habitable by our species.

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thanks for reporting on this. justifying the repression of non violent direct action by conflating it with mass violence seems like...a real fascist place to take it AGU.

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As a general principle, I do not think government should fire employees for speech - that creates a dangerous precedent, as Emily rightly points out. That said, I strongly disagree with what the scientists did (in a personal capacity as a fellow scientist) and support AGU's investigation.

The AGU Fall meeting is the largest gathering of earth scientists from around the world. In particular, with the move to hybrid participation formats in recent years and other accommodations (e.g., zero registration fees), AGU has had some of the highest participation from scientists in the Global South. As one such scientist myself, the sessions I led and attended had significant international participation.

That two white scientists with privileged positions at high profile institutions would choose to appropriate the meeting to lecture a global audience is deeply unfair. The very people in the audience are more likely to have been directly impacted by climate impacts, are more likely to be working on local solutions, and are more likely to be acutely aware of burden of climate crisis on their communities than the two scientists who took the stage. I find it problematic that we are quick to turn the idiosyncratic manifestation of the guilt of rich white people into something more noble while simultaneously belittling everyone else who don't subscribe to such nihilistic philosophy.

That these two scientists knowingly *chose* the first-ever plenary event headlined by a trans scientists discussing, for the first time, the intersection of art and climate shows how little they care about the community they claim to represent. Perhaps as intended, nobody is talking about this ground-breaking session but *about* these two individuals. This isn't climate activism, this is narcissism with a side of moral superiority complex.

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Jan 27·edited Jan 27

Great article. I was taken aback by

"Asked to explain how the protest endangered others, an AGU spokesperson referenced the recent mass shootings in California. “That element of surprise is something that unfortunately these days…we live in a time where we just don't know,” they said."

This suggests that the AGU and other representatives of the establishment have an interest in mass shootings taking place (as it provides them with an excuse to suppress peaceful protest).

Does this shed some light on why politicians cannot agree on laws preventing mass shootings?

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I would have never known the depth of this story without reading the work of Heated. I am thankful for your reporting and the opportunity to support it. This is deeply concerning as to the indirect effects of influencing other scientists to keep quiet about the impacts of what they are seeing unfold in the data.

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"The American Geophysical Union is a powerful organization, with over 60,000 members worldwide and 23 peer-reviewed journals."

This shows that the AGU is run by scientists. If enough of the scientists come together to found their own alternative organziation and journals that could make for some healthy competition. For example, scientists could choose in which journals they publish. If enough famous and prestigious scientists lead the way that could make a real impact. On the way, they could also make sure that all their research is in the public domain and open access.

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Great piece. Also, we need to figure out how Julian Allwood, at Cambridge University, is getting away with being this blunt -- almost impossible to do in the US for a senior academic on the record.


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Not sure where you can go with this, but large organizations don’t like surprises, so I believe their response was to be expected. Please follow this thread and inform us of any changes or backlash from fellow members of AGU. Thanks!

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Fantastic write up! Silence of the lambs

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Good stuff; Thanks!

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