A Weblog monitoring coverage of environmental issues and science in the UK media. By Professor Emeritus Philip Stott. The aim is to assess whether a subject is being fairly covered by press, radio, and television. Above all, the Weblog will focus on science, but not just on poor science. It will also bring to public notice good science that is being ignored because it may be politically inconvenient.

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Small-scale terrorism of a different kind.....

A deeply depressing article in last week's The Times Higher Education Supplement (October 17), entitled 'Scientists quit UK amid GM attacks', records the impact on some very good people of what is little short of ecoterrorism. A small minority of the anti-GM lobby are not nice people. One fine and deeply concerned scientist tells us that over the last five years he has been consistently abused and that he has had to call the bomb squad on one occasion. The head of an equally fine institute has been the victim of personal threats for having had the audacity to take part in the nationwide GM debate. This has forced him into protective measures. In one incident of crop vandalisation, experimental plants were destroyed that were part of an investigation into drought resistence in crops for poverty-stricken sub-Saharan Africa. The mind boggles at the sheer stupidity and self-indulgence. The THES reports a survey showing that between January, 1999 and April, 2003, there have been at least 28 incidents of vandalism against basic crop trials, and 52 against the Farm Scale Evaluations (FSEs). And the outcome is inevitable. A number of our best scientists are leaving, to countries such as Australia, Germany, and the US. We cannot allow this illegal and anti-democratic activity to succeed in this country, and I am waiting for organisations and newspapers that should know much better to disavow publically such activities. Moreover, the government must now show its mettle in the face this crass and dangerous 'campaigning'.

[New counter, June 19, 2006, with loss of some data]

WWW EnviroSpin Watch

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?