New NASA Admin – From Denial to Science?

June 7, 2018



The Hill:

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine says he changed his mind on the existence of man-made climate change because he “read a lot.”

“I heard a lot of experts, and I read a lot,” Bridenstine told The Washington Post on Tuesday. “I came to the conclusion myself that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that we’ve put a lot of it into the atmosphere and therefore we have contributed to the global warming that we’ve seen. And we’ve done it in really significant ways.”


The former congressman from Oklahoma had long denied the scientific consensus on climate change and said in a 2013 speech on the House floor that “global temperatures stopped rising 10 years ago.”

In May, Bridenstine first announced publicly that he now believes human activity is the main cause of climate change.

“The National Climate Assessment that includes NASA, and it includes the Department of Energy and it includes NOAA, has clearly stated it is extremely likely — is the language they use — that human activity is the dominant cause of global warming,” he said at a Senate Appropriations Committee subpanel’s hearing last month.

President Trump and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt have not made similar pronouncements, however.

Washington Post:

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, who previously questioned whether humans are primarily responsible for climate change, left no doubt Wednesday that his position has changed. Signifying a striking conversion, he confirmed that he now accepts that humans are, in fact, the leading cause.

During testimony before the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on commerce, justice, science and related agencies, Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) asked Bridenstine whether he believes greenhouse gases are the primary cause of climate change. Bridenstine quickly replied in the affirmative.

“The National Climate Assessment, that includes NASA, and it includes the Department of Energy, and it includes NOAA, has clearly stated it is extremely likely, [that] is the language they use, that human activity is the dominant cause of global warming, and I have no reason to doubt the science that comes from that,” Bridenstine said.

Schatz followed up by asking, “Is it fair to call this an evolution of your views?”

Bridenstine replied: “Yes.”

On further questioning from Schatz, Bridenstine also committed to defending the independence and integrity of climate science at NASA.

Schatz thanked Bridenstine for his evolved stance. “I have come to the conclusion that this is a true evolution. That you respect people with whom you work, you respect the science, you want their respect. And there is no way to move forward if you’re going to be undermining the science. So I’m really pleased to see this change,” the senator said.



10 Responses to “New NASA Admin – From Denial to Science?”

  1. Sir Charles Says:

    This Jim Bridenstine looks rather like a first grader than like an administrator of a science agency. But well. Every little helps.

  2. Sir Charles Says:

    Hear, hear…

    The head of Canada’s largest oil company says climate change is backed by science, and deniers, including politicians, need to do a U-turn and accept it.

    => Suncor CEO slams climate change deniers, politicians who cater to them

    ‘I hope some of those politicians get brave enough to stand up and take some different positions,’ CEO says

  3. andrewfez Says:

    Sounds like he’s retiring from politics shortly and isn’t going to look for an oil lobby job afterwards.

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