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Posts Tagged ‘Transparency’

Clearing the Air on Fracking: Reflections from our Recent Webinar

When citizens have questions about hydraulic fracturing, where do they turn? In our recent webinar, Fracking: Advancing a Science-Informed Debate, myself and my colleague Andrew Rosenberg, the director of the Center for Science and Democracy at UCS, did our best to convey as much information as possible from our recent report, Toward an Evidence-based Fracking Debate. Read More

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Companies, Climate, and Trade Groups: The Saga Continues with New Data Released

Some companies just don’t like sharing.

At least that’s my first takeaway from viewing the newly released reports from CDP (formerly, the Carbon Disclosure Project) that we’ve been waiting for. The international not-for-profit organization officially released this year’s data last night at the New York Stock Exchange. Every year, CDP collects climate reporting data it obtains by annually surveying companies worldwide, but this year, the organization asked companies something new. And the results (and lack thereof) are quite revealing. Read More

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Transparency Advances at the Consumer Product Safety Commission

It is fitting that the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has recently released solid, informative policies advising agency staff, including scientists, on the appropriate use of social media to both do the work of the agency and as citizens with their own opinions. Read More

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Science, Democracy and Fracking: People Have Questions and They Deserve Answers

In late July, the Center for Science and Democracy at the Union of Concerned Scientists, in collaboration with UCLA, held a workshop and public forum on “Science, Democracy and Community Decisions on Fracking”. We organized the forum in response to the exponential growth of hydraulic fracturing for unconventional oil and natural gas that is transforming our energy economy. Read More

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Playing a Shell Game with a Power Plant: Ratepayers Lose

Ever wonder how your utility company sets your electricity price? Most of us don’t think much about our electric bills; we just pay them and figure there isn’t much we can do about it if the rates increase. However, once in a while there’s an opportunity for ordinary citizens to speak up and make their voices heard. At the moment, that’s especially true if you get electricity from Mon Power or Potomac Edison, which together serve a large part of West Virginia. Read More

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Cautiously Open to Open Science

Last week I was asked to peer-review a manuscript for a top academic journal in my field of study. I accepted the invitation and spent several hours of my weekend reading and critiquing 30 pages of dry technical writing. Did I get paid to do this? Nope. Did I get credit for it? Not really (reviewers are typically anonymous). So why would I waste a precious Saturday for this? Read More

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Towards Open Access to Government Science: The Obama Administration Takes Some Important Steps

This week, the National Research Council is holding public comment meetings on increasing public access to federally funded research—both access to the data and publications. We encouraged the UCS Science Network to weigh in with their own ideas on how the government can increase public access to its science. After all, this is the science that we all pay for through our tax dollars. Read More

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#ScioDC: A Conversation on Scientists, Government, and Social Media This Week

This Wednesday, I’ll be speaking at the inaugural event of ScienceOnlineDC about the recent UCS report I co-authored, Grading Government Transparency: Scientists’ Freedom to Speak (and Tweet) at Federal Agencies. ScienceOnlineDC is a newly formed Washington, DC satellite of ScienceOnline, a nonprofit organization that facilitates conversations, community, and collaborations at the intersection of science and the Web. Read More

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Death, Taxes, and Trade Groups: Holding Corporations Accountable on Climate Change

Today is April 15, a day that many Americans dread: Tax Day. And it’s not just you and I who need to file our taxes. American corporations have to do their taxes too. (The Supreme Court ruled that they are people now, after all.) And while I definitely don’t look forward to doing my own taxes, I am interested in seeing what information comes back on corporate foundation tax forms. Read More

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Four Hours after UCS Report Release, United States Geological Survey Takes a Step Forward

UPDATE Monday March 18 3:00PM (see below):

Who ever said the federal government can’t work fast?

This morning, UCS released a report analyzing how federal government agencies and departments allow their scientists to communicate with the public. We found that while many agencies have better policies since 2008, there are still improvements to be made. Read More

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