LETTERS: The unscientific life of the Harper government

The clamp-down has also meant a loss for the international science community.

In his latest MP Report, Dan Albas remarks on “allegations” the federal government muzzles federal research scientists, saying scientists at the two federal research facilities in our region have never made similar complaints to him.

I think any scientist would agree that a lack of anecdotal evidence expressed in a limited number of conversations doesn’t mean that no evidence exists.

Across time, numerous government scientists have said they’ve been barred from speaking freely about their research. In one case, scientists at an international polar conference in 2012 were not allowed to speak to the media unless government employees were in attendance to monitor and record what they said.

It’s perhaps understandable why Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz interrupted one scientist and had him swept off stage, again in 2012. George DaPont, president of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, had been speaking about an extensive beef recall when Ritz intervened.

It’s harder to imagine why Scott Dallimore, a Natural Resources geologist, needed government approval to talk to journalists in 2010 about his study of a flood in Northern Canada almost 13,000 years ago.

Late last year, more than 800 scientists from 32 countries called on Harper to end “burdensome restrictions on scientific communication and collaboration faced by Canadian government scientists.” Canada’s leadership in basic research, environmental, health and other public science is in jeopardy, they said.

The clamp-down has also meant a loss for the international science community.

Dianne Varga

Kelowna

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Flooding water at West Kelowna Tim Hortons closes lane on Highway 97

This story has been updated with more accurate information. Water flooding from… Continue reading

Albas to speak at Summerland Chamber luncheon

Event will be held at Summerland Arena Banquet Room on Tuesday, Feb. 11

Local businesses partner to support SOWINS

The Community Spoons invites people to help make soups the first Monday of the month

Kelowna grandmother scammed of $14,000 in phone scam

RCMP warn of Grandparent Scam in the Okanagan after December incident

RDOS budget videos available online

Budget must be completed by March 31

VIDEO: Mass coronavirus quarantines seen in China won’t happen in Canada, authorities say

‘If a case comes here, and it is probably … it will still be business as normal’

Campfires no longer permitted at Kelowna scout camp

City of Kelowna said they rejected Camp Dunlop’s fire permit due to stricter bylaws

Province’s oldest practising lawyer shares advice at her 100th birthday party

Firefighters bring Constance Isherwood a cake with 100 birthday candles

Vernon woman suing McDonald’s for spilled coffee

Woman seeking nearly $10K, says employee failed to put lid on properly

Okanagan team leads animal rescue efforts in Australia

Brad Pattison’s team arrived in Sydney on Monday

Vernon woman suing McDonald’s for spilled coffee

Woman seeking nearly $10K, says employee failed to put lid on properly

Diners’ health tax not catching on in B.C., restaurant group says

Small businesses look for options to cover employer health tax

Avalanche danger closes Highway 1 near Chase

The highway is closed in both directions east of Chase

B.C. comic wins judgment after club owner slaps cellphone out of his hands

Incident happened last summer when Garrett Clark was performing in Abbotsford

Most Read