The San Jose Mercury News has run a rather remarkable piece by Ed Maibach, director of the Center for Climate Change Communication at George Mason University, and Amanda Millstein, co-founder of Climate Health Now, titled “Demanding moral clarity from Stanford on fossil fuels.”
There may have been better moments to appeal to the authority of The Lancet to justify one’s claim to shame over others not heeding demands to, as the phrase goes in so many settings these days, “follow the science.” But of course no one can predict the future, even days in advance.
Some may find the item preachy. For some helpful context, dare we say clarity, to this latest push by Mr. Maibach, CLW readers might remember his emergence in the climate litigation movement in 2015. In those heady days, he was urging law enforcement to use anti-mobster racketeering laws to pursue political opponents of climate policies.
Mr. Maibach floated the idea, unsuccessfully, past Union of Concerned Scientists’ Peter Frumhoff — of “secret meeting at Harvard” fame. That appeal was the first hint to slip out of UCS’s work behind the scenes with state attorneys general to go after their “climate” opponents.
Toward that end, months later came what, in climate circles, was at the time the apex of moral clarity: that “secret meeting” co-hosted by UCS, for AG offices and “prospective funders”, “about going after climate denialism–along with a bunch of state and local prosecutors nationwide.”
Mr. Maibach did affirm his view that, if climate litigation produced a big settlement like the one that employed him earlier in his PR career, “a good portion of that money should be spent on a national campaign to educate people on the risks of climate change, and build their resolve to work towards solutions.” With the assistance and moral guidance of, for example, GMU’s Center, where, “As director, I suppose my chief job is raising the money we need to do the research”.