There is a letter signed by top scientists demanding that science museums cut all their ties to Big Fossil, and where appropriate, kick the Koch Brothers off their boards.
The letter says, in part,
As members of the scientific community we devote our lives to understanding the world, and sharing this understanding with the public. We are deeply concerned by the links between museums of science and natural history with those who profit from fossil fuels or fund lobby groups that misrepresent climate science.
Museums are trusted sources of scientific information, some of our most important resources for educating children and shaping public understanding.
We are concerned that the integrity of these institutions is compromised by association with special interests who obfuscate climate science, fight environmental regulation, oppose clean energy legislation, and seek to ease limits on industrial pollution.
For example, Big Fossilman David Koch is a major donor to the Smithsonian and sits on its board Board. That’s the same Smithsonian who harbors science denialist Willie Soon and at least one other denier.
“It is one thing for David Koch to give money to Lincoln Center or Carnegie Hall, but it is quite another to support a science/natural history museum that has a role to play in doing research on, and helping educate the public about, climate change, the greatest threat ever to confront humanity”, said signer and Nobel laureate Eric Chivian. “The philanthropy serves to silence any criticism of the practices of the donor, and even, possibly, any critical discussion of the issue.”
“Energy companies and the Koch brothers gain social license from their association with these scientific institutions. It gives them cultural capital and credibility as supporters of science, yet they fund scientists and lobby groups that spread climate science disinformation and block action on climate change.” says Beka Economopoulos, director of The Natural History Museum, which organized the letter.
Climate scientist Michael Mann, who also signed, noted that “corporate polluters are embedding themselves in these spaces that communicate science to the public. Cloaked in the garb of civic-mindedness, they launder their image while simultaneously and covertly influencing the content offered by those institutions. It’s a public relations move of the highest order. David Koch sits on the board of our nation’s largest and most respected natural history museums, while he bankrolls groups that deny climate science. There is a clear contradiction between the mission of these museums and the politics of their patron.”
There is a petition that goes along with the letter that you might want to sign. It is HERE.