On the Record

As a vital component of our mission to make science useful to society, our researchers publish in peer-reviewed journals, participate in news conferences and interviews, and respond to requests by Congress for information about their findings.

While professional journalists strive for accuracy in their reporting, the limited space allotted to news stories often results in statements appearing out of context. Such isolated comments may sometimes skew the author's or speaker's intention.

On the Record presents source material from NCAR and UCAR researchers to provide context and accuracy, as well as official statements in response to issues affecting the research community.


AMS and UCAR urge U.Va. to support climate scientist, defend academic freedom

Letter to the president of the University of Virginia (news release, May 2010)

The letter, from the American Meteorological Society and the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, expresses concern following the actions of Virginia Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli, II. Cuccinelli has placed a Civil Investigative Demand on documentation of former University of Virginia scientist Michael Mann’s research. [Read the letter here.]

Response to Hacking of University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit (CRU)

UCAR statement (news release, December 2009)

"The selective publication of some stolen emails and other papers taken out of context is not a responsible way to engage on the issue of climate change. . . . The core science of climate change is based on exhaustive peer review involving hundreds of scientists at many independent institutions in the United States and around the world, and it is in no way changed by the content of the stolen files of East Anglia." [Read the full statement.]

Statement by Kevin Trenberth, NCAR Senior Scientist (December 2009)

Trenberth responds to quotes within the stolen email messages that were taken out of context and widely circulated, including this one: "The fact is that we can't account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can't." In response, Trenberth writes: "It is amazing to see this particular quote lambasted so often. It stems from a paper I published [in 2009] bemoaning our inability to effectively monitor the energy flows associated with short-term climate variability. It is quite clear from the paper that I was not questioning the link between anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and warming, or even suggesting that recent temperatures are unusual in the context of short-term natural variability." [Read Trenberth's full statement here. A related news release, "Missing" heat may affect future climate change, is here.]

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The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research manages the National Center for Atmospheric Research under sponsorship by the National Science Foundation. Any opinions, findings and conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.