Former UVA climate scientist paints Ken Cuccinelli as ‘anti-science’

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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Former University of Virginia climate scientist Michael Mann decried Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli as “anti-science” during an appearance on MSNBC’s “All In” with Chris Hayes.

“Virginians have a very stark choice before them. On the one hand you have Terry McAuliffe who embraces science and technology, who recognizes that technological innovation is what’s going to help Virginia compete in a world economy in the 21st Century,” Mann told Hayes on Wednesday.

“On the other hand, you have Ken Cuccinelli. Somebody who views science as something to attack if it doesn’t comport with his ideological views, or the views of the special interests that fund his campaigns,” Mann added.

Mann has been actively campaigning with the Democratic candidate all across Virginia in a tight gubernatorial race, accompanying McAuliffe on a tour of a health-care startup company in Charlottesville in earlier last month.

On Monday, Mann spoke with Ari Rabin-Havt on Sirius XM Progress to paint McAuliffe as someone who is “pro-science” and “pro-technology” while painting Cuccinelli as an “anti-science zealot.”

However, Mann has a history with Cuccinelli, who is Virginia’s attorney general. In 2010, Cuccinelli began looking into alleged fraud by Mann in obtaining grants to conduct global warming research. Mann also became the subject of controversy when emails were leaked from the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit, which referred to a statistical “trick” he used in his research to show catastrophic global warming.

The Virginia Supreme Court threw out the case in 2012.

“I published 15 years ago this graph called the ‘hockey stick’ that shows how unprecedented recent global warming is, and it became an icon in the climate change debate,” Mann said. “Over the past 15 years my co-authors and I have been subject to a crescendo of by politicians, typically aligned closely with fossil fuel interests or front groups advocating for the fossil fuel industry, that see the need to discredit this iconic graphic.”

The “hockey stick” graph was touted by global warming alarmists as evidence of rapidly rising temperatures and as justification for government action to curb carbon dioxide emissions. However, the graph was met with criticism.

One 2003 study published in Energy and Environment found that the “particular ‘hockey stick’ shape derived in the MBH98 proxy construction — a temperature index that decreases slightly between the early 15th century and early 20th century and then increases dramatically up to 1980 — is primarily an artifact of poor data handling, obsolete data and incorrect calculation of principal components.”

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