When Amy met NOAA (and JPMorgan Chase and WWF and …)

After being prompted by Willis E’s recent Open Letter to Google thread on WUWT to blog on the topic of Do Google Do Evil?, I thought I might as well do some further ‘digging in the clay’.

To follow up on Willis’s concerns about Google’s bias towards CAGW, I thought I might as well investigate this topic further by using Google Search to find out more about Amy Luers, in particular about her past and her role within Google.org. I love ‘googling’ as it’s surprising what it turns up from time to time. I found that if you really want to find some ‘golden nuggets’ though, you really have to dig a lot further down (into the clay) and not just settle for the first couple of pages of links that Google serves up for you in answer to your search.

Thanks to Google Search, here is an interesting link straight-off for Amy Luers’  short bio.


“Amy Luers is program manager of environment and vulnerability mapping for Google.org’s Predict and Prevent Emerging Threats Initiative. Prior to joining Google.org, Amy managed the Climate Program for the Union of Concerned Scientists California’s office and spent 10 years working on international development and global change in Latin America. She is co-founder and former executive director of a small NGO dedicated to supporting rural water supply in Latin America. Her research and publications have focused on issues of vulnerability and adaptive capacity to global environmental changes and on climate policy. Amy holds a Ph.D. in environmental science and an M.A. in international policy studies, both from Stanford University, and a M.S. and B.S. in environmental resources engineering from Humboldt State University. ”

Notice my bold (and see later). So it seems the person responsible for selecting Google.org’s 21 ‘climate research fellows’ is a former Union of Concerned Scientists Climate Program manager and a Stanford University alumni. Now remind me, how many of those Google.org ‘climate research fellows’ are from Stanford University? Why not check for yourself by clicking the following link.


Here are the one’s I’ve spotted.

Noah Diffenbaugh, Assistant Professor, Environmental Earth System Science, Stanford University
Jonathan Koomey, Consulting Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University
David Lobell, Assistant Professor, Environmental Earth System Science, Stanford University

So two of 21 Google.org ‘fellows’ are actually from the very same department from which she gained her Ph.D at Stanford University. Interesting! More digging needed there I think?

Even better, here is the web page from where this bio link comes from.


Quite a list of who’s who in the CAGW world isn’t it, including such notables as Kevin “It’s a Travesty…” Trenberth, Judith “Road to Damascus” Curry, WWF’s Richard “Sponsor a leopard and help save the Amazon” Moss, Climate Central’s Heidi “Dis-bar all skeptical meteorologists” Cullen, to name a few and a postive ‘bouquet’ of NOAA Directors/Department heads’ of which “Uncle” Tom Karl (Matt, Imke and Tamara’s boss) is but one (of the less important ones)!

The full list of the participants in this Climate Change ‘love fest’ retreat in Veil, Colorado in June 2008 can be seen in the following link

June 2008 CWG retreat at Veil, Colorado

Now what on earth is Amy Luers doing with all these people? Well they are all ‘reviewing’ NOAA’s ‘Draft Strategic Plan for a National Climate Service’. Many of them are NOAA staff/management and members of the NOAA Climate Working Group (CWG), but why on earth have Amy Luers (Google.org), Heidi Cullen (Climate Central), Marc Levinson (JPMorgan Chase), Richard Moss (WWF) and Chris West (UK CIG) been invited? Well presumably to present and discuss their ideas on ‘Framing Emerging Demands’ of course! You can see their presentations by clicking on the links on the following link (http://www.joss.ucar.edu/cwg/jun08/presentations.html).

Hmmm! So here we have bonefide (arguably somewhat disturbing?) evidence of several ardent CAGW advocates and pretty much all the NOAA senior management being involved at the same meeting as the “Program Manager of Environment and Vulnerability Mapping for Google.org’s Predict and Prevent Emerging Threats Initiative”. Could the cause of Google.org’s bias on CAGW originate with Amy Luers, ex-UCS program manager? On the basis of this initial ‘digging’ it would certainly seem as though she is playing some part in influencing Google.org’s policy on climate change at least. It’s also interesting to note that NOAA’s Climate Working Group lists a certain Jonathan “I never said ‘We must get rid of the MWP’” Overpeck as a member. I wonder if Susan Solomon, or Ben Santer ever attends?

Now who chaired this Climage Change ‘love fest’ retreat? Eric Barron, of course. But who is Eric Barron you might ask? Well here is his short bio – http://www.joss.ucar.edu/cwg/jun08/bios/barron.html.

“Barron went to Pennsylvania State University (PSU) in 1986 to direct the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences’ newly formed Earth System Science Center (ESSC). In 1989, he was promoted to professor of Geosciences. Under Barron’s leadership, the growth of ESSC resulted in the establishment of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences’ Environment Institute, which included ESSC and a group of other research centers. Barron became the Director of this new Institute in 1998. He earned the title of distinguished professor in 1999. In 2002, he was named Dean of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences at Penn State. ”

PSU – that sounds familiar? ESSC – that does as well! I wonder who is the current Director of PSU ESSC (founded by Eric Barron). Here’s a clue This Mann! but make sure your kids aren’t looking over your shoulder when you click that link. Could PSC ESSU’s latest director be the next Eric Barron i.e. could he go on to be a ‘leading light’ on the NAS/NRC and rub shoulders with the likes of Ralph Cicerone and Gerry North (http://www8.nationalacademies.org/onpinews/newsitem.aspx?RecordID=10139)? Could this be a case of the student following in the footsteps of his mentor/master? I wonder if Eric has ever been asked to baby sit? For those non-ClimateAudit ‘lifers’ (like myself and Willis E) wondering about the relevance of that last question, it’s an insider joke and I’ll leave it for someone else to  explain it – hopefully. If not then eventually I will.


About KevinUK (DITC)

Ex-nuclear physicist now self employed software developer searching for plausible evidence as to whether or not mankind is responsible for the late 20th century's (non-)global warming trend.
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11 Responses to When Amy met NOAA (and JPMorgan Chase and WWF and …)

  1. j ferguson says:

    No-one who would consider themselves literate in a musical sense should be unaware of Ray Bolger and Amy:

  2. BT Harley says:

    Wow, looks like a fabulous mob of ‘climastrologists’…

  3. gallopingcamel says:

    Google seems to have much in common with Wikipedia. Until recently William Connolley was busy editing everything that refuted the climate change “consensus”. Connolley has worked with several scientists at NOAA and Gavin Schmidt (Realclimate).

  4. pascvaks says:

    Unless you use a Cattle-Prod not much is going to go your way in life.

  5. j ferguson says:

    I might add to the comment with the Ray Bolger “Amy” bit, that it includes an actual “tree hugging” for those who have never seen one.

  6. John F. Hultquist says:

    As Arte Johnson often said, “Verrrry interesting.”

  7. John F. Hultquist says:

    So, here’s the link:

  8. Pingback: Fruits of a tangled web | Digging in the Clay

  9. Wow, you really have got the old ad hominem argumentation off to a fine art. Let me just get this straight – you’re arguing that because various scientists have worked in the same universities, they shouldn’t be trusted? Would it be better if scientists work in isolated silos and never actually talk to each other?

    • Verity Jones says:

      One of the concerns many sceptics have is that ‘group think’ is responsible for a reduction of objectivity in climate science. Further than that, academic scientists like to assert that their career and research are driven by higher motives and untainted by political or monetary connections. The relationships above reinforce the ‘group think’ concern and point out an example of active influence.

      So actually this is a case of Ad hominem circumstantial – an attack on the bias of the people rather than on them per se – bias that is towards climate change being primarily man made, likely to be catastrophic, and something we can and should do something about, whatever the cost.

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