Trump NOAA pick questions ties between climate change and extreme weather

By Rebecca Beitsch

The White House is appointing Ryan Maue, a meteorologist who has been vocal in questioning the science connecting climate change to extreme weather events, as the new chief scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), according to reporting from The Washington Post.

Maue, currently a meteorologist and developer at weathermodels.com, has amassed a significant twitter following by sharing maps and forecasts tracking the weather.

But his social media presence also shows he’s been critical of Democrats and claims that climate change is exacerbating natural disasters.

In a now-deleted tweet from earlier this month, Maue said it “seems the Democrats have coordinated their efforts to use the devastating California fires as an opportunity to score political points in the upcoming election by blaming them solely on climate change (and Trump).”

The White House and the NOAA did not respond to request for comment.

Maue’s reported appointment comes just a week after the Trump administration appointed David Legates, an academic with a history of questioning humans’ influence on global warming, as NOAA’s deputy assistant secretary of commerce for observation and prediction.

Maue previously was a scholar at the libertarian Cato Institute, which shut down its Charles Koch-funded Center for the Study of Science, which also questioned man’s influence on climate change.

“The Climate Feedback clique isn’t going to like this at all,” Maue wrote on twitter in July in response to an opinion piece questioning the validity of “attribution” studies connecting weather events and climate change.

“If you question the efficacy of attribution science, then you risk being smeared and censored,” he wrote.

If he joins the agency, he would be among those responsible for enforcing the NOAA’s scientific integrity policy designed to protect government scientists from censorship or other blowback tied to their work.

Maue has criticized the NOAA in the past, including during the “Sharpiegate” scandal, where NOAA officials covered for President Trump after he incorrectly said Hurricane Dorian was headed toward Alabama.

“Whoa! Nothing like throwing your ‘Alabama’ NWS office under the bus,” Maue said on Twitter.

“There is nothing wrong with this Tweet from NWS Birmingham issued on Sept 1 after the President’s erroneous information,” he added. 

This article appeared on The Hill website at https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/517554-trump-noaa-hire-has-long-questioned-ties-between-climate-change-and