Agency: Local Govt.

Silencing Science Tracker

Agency: Local Govt.

2018-05 Engineering Positions in Virginia Beach’s Stormwater Division Eliminated Local Govt., State, VA Budget Cuts, Personnel Changes Climate

The Virginia Beach city council announced that it would suspend a storm water fee increase, which was intended to pay for additional staff to work on issues relating to sea level rise. As a result of the suspension, nine staff positions will be left unfilled.

2018-04-06 Research Findings Questioned by New Hampshire Cities Local Govt., NH, State Bias and Misrepresentation Other

The cities of Dover, Portsmouth, and Rochester in New Hampshire questioned the accuracy of scientific research finding that municipal wastewater is contributing to high nitrogen levels in the Great Bay estuary.

2018-02-07 Science on Vaccine Safety Misrepresented by Milwaukee Health Department Official Local Govt., State, WI Bias and Misrepresentation Other

During a radio interview, the newly appointed head of Milwaukee’s Health Department, Patricia McManus, stated that “the science is still out” on whether vaccines cause autism. Any link between vaccines and autism has, however, been disproved in numerous scientific studies.

2018-01-31 Milwaukee Health Department Employees Prevented from Discussing Lead Contamination Local Govt., State, WI Government Censorship Other

Former Milwaukee Health Commissioner Bevan Baker ordered Health Department employees not to discuss concerns about lead contamination with members of the city council.

2018-01 Water Testing Blocked by South Carolina Mayor Local Govt., SC, State Research Hindrance Other

The mayor of Denmark in South Carolina, Gerald Wright, refused to allow a Virginia Tech professor, Marc Edwards, to test the city’s drinking water supplies for possible contamination. Mayor Wright asserted that the testing was unnecessary because the city’s water had already been assessed by the state Department of Health and Environmental Control and found to be safe.

2017-10-25 Humans’ Role in Climate Change Questioned by Virginia Mayor Local Govt., State, VA Bias and Misrepresentation Climate

The Mayor of Tangier Island in Virginia, James Eskridge, told reporters that he does not believe human activities are the main cause of climate change.

2017-08-01 Climate Science Misrepresented by Virginia Mayor Local Govt., State, VA Bias and Misrepresentation Climate

In a televised Town Hall, the Mayor of Tangier Island in Virginia questioned whether sea level rise is actually occurring, stating: “I’m a keen observer . . . why am I not seeing sings of it?”

2017-06 Climate Science Misrepresented by North Dakota Mayor Local Govt., ND, State Bias and Misrepresentation Climate

During a radio interview, Howard Klug, the Mayor of Williston, North Dakota, questioned whether climate change is real. Mayor Klug then asserted that human activities, including the development and use of fossil fuels, have little impact on the climate. He argued that there is no need to restrict fossil fuel development as the “world . . . can heal itself.”

2017-02 Climate Science Misrepresented by Kentucky Mayor KY, Local Govt., State Bias and Misrepresentation Climate

Todd Pollock, the mayor of Bedford in Kentucky, told reporters that the science of climate change is not “settled” and that its causes have yet to be determined.