Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
The Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP) was set up in 1990 with the help of the Washington Institute for Values in Public Policy which provided it with free office space. (SEPP is no longer affiliated with Moon and receives its funding from various foundations.)
SEPP has argued that global warming, ozone depletion and acid rain are not real but rather are scare tactics used by environmentalists.
SEPP was the source of misinformation about glaciers widely cited by global warming deniers, including David Bellamy in a letter in New Scientist magazine. The claim, which turned out to be false, was that the majority of glaciers were growing. It was originally published on the SEPP website. Singer eventually conceded the information 'appears to be incorrect'.
The SEPP website claims:
carbon dioxide (CO2) levels are rising, but the climate seems not to be warming as a result. It did warm greatly between 1880 and 1940--long before CO2 increased significantly. But since 1940, weather satellites, tree ring data, and corrected thermometer readings all agree that climate has not warmed as much--even though CO2 levels rose... climate warming does indeed seem far away and a minor problem at that. There is a sure threat to human existence, however, and that is the near-certainty of a coming ice age. Geologists tell us that the present interglacial warm period will soon come to an end. Perhaps greenhouse warming can save us from an icy fate.
S. Fred Singer (pictured) is SEPP's founder executive director. He has a phd in physics and speaks and writes prolifically, particularly opinion pieces newspapers, as a global warming denier. He was on the advisory board of front group The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition (TASSC) and is currently a scientific advisor to the American Council on Science and Health (ACSH). He is also Research Professor at the Koch Industries-funded Institute for Humane Studies (IHS).
Singer travels the world giving speeches. For example he toured Austria in November 1997, prior to the Kyoto Conference, and presented a speech to the Austrian Parliament in which he disputed the need to act to prevent global warming. In November 2009 he toured Europe. Two of the leading Australian conservative think tanks have sponsored him to tour Australia, putting his views on global warming. He has worked for companies such as Exxon, Shell, and Arco.
Singer argues that “scientific experts still strongly disagree on the evidence” and to confirm this he circulated the Liepzig Declaration on Global Climate Change in the US. This was supposedly signed by over 80 scientists in the US and Europe but the credentials of those scientists have been questioned. Singer sent the Declaration to members of the American Meteorological Society and the American Geophysical Union and as a result some of the American signatories are media weather reporters; some don’t even have a science degree; and many names are unheard of in the US climate research community. Others denied having signed it.
Singer's 2009 book, Unstoppable Global Warming, co-written with Dennis Avery, argues that "global temperatures have been rising mostly or entirely because of a natural cycle".
Singer has also been a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation, a fellow at the Hoover Institution and advisory editor for the Cato magazine, Regulation. He is currently funded by the Heartland Institute to recruit climate deniers for their Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), host its meetings and write for its publications.
Singer has done consulting work for companies such as Exxon, Shell, and Arco and SEPP has received funds from ExxonMobil. According to the Environmental Research Foundation:
“For years, Singer was a professor at the University of Virginia where he was funded by energy companies to pump out glossy pamphlets pooh-poohing climate change. Singer hasn’t published original research on climate change in 20 years and is now an ‘independent’ consultant, who spends his time writing letters to the editor, and testifying before Congress, claiming that ozone-depletion and global warming aren’t real problems.”
In 1998 people from SEPP, oil company Exxon, and others attended a meeting at the American Petroleum Institute, to plan a $5 million campaign:
to train up to 20 "respected climate scientists" on media—and public—outreach with the aim of "raising questions about and undercutting the 'prevailing scientific wisdom' " and, in particular, "the Kyoto treaty's scientific underpinnings" so that elected officials "will seek to prevent progress toward implementation." The plan, once exposed in the press, "was never implemented as policy," says Marshall's William O'Keefe, who was then at API.
- 'Science and Environmental Policy Project', SourceWatch
- 'S. Fred Singer', SourceWatch
- 'FACTSHEET: Science and Environmental Policy Project, SEPP', ExxonSecrets
- 'Science and Environmental Policy Project', PowerBase
- 'Science & Environmental Policy Project', Wikipedia
- 'Fred Singer', Wikipedia
- 'S. Fred Singer', Desmogblog