WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. scientists felt pressured to tailor their writings on global warming to fit the Bush administration's skepticism, in some cases at the behest of an ex-oil industry lobbyist, a congressional committee heard on Tuesday.
"Our investigations found high-quality science struggling to get out," Francesca Grifo of the watchdog group Union of Concerned Scientists told members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
A survey by the group found that 150 climate scientists personally experienced political interference in the past five years, for a total of at least 435 incidents.
"Nearly half of all respondents perceived or personally experienced pressure to eliminate the words 'climate change,' 'global warming' or other similar terms from a variety of communications," Grifo said.
Rick Piltz, a former U.S. government scientist who said he resigned in 2005 after pressure to soft-pedal findings on global warming, told the committee in prepared testimony that former White House official Phil Cooney took an active role in casting doubt on the consequences of global climate change.