Carl Safina exposed as Enviro Bully

CFOOD, a network of fisheries scientists, responded this week to an article in Medium titled, Environmental Bullies, how conservation ideologues attack scientists who don’t agree with them.

CFOOD summarizes the article well:

“Dr. Lutcavage felt [Carl] Safina and other NGOs like Pew Oceans have maligned her and her peers for their research because it would, ‘get in the way of fund-raising campaigns, messages to the media, book sales, rich donors, and perhaps the most insidious – attempts to influence US fisheries and ocean policies.'”

CFOOD contributor John Sibert of the University of Hawaii says that pressure for scientists to change or “spin” research results occurs more often than it should. He shares his most recent experience with pressure that came from a stringer who writes for Science magazine. The reporter’s approach was to play word games with Sibert’s replies in order to make it seem that Sibert’s research supported MPAs; it did not. Sibert repeatedly explained that the research showed that closing high-seas pockets had no effect whatsoever on the viability of tuna populations and that empirical evidence showed that the closure of the western high seas pockets in 2008 had in fact increased tuna catches. 

Sibert summarizes with great advice:

“Instead of attacking the messenger and implying that Lutcavage and her colleagues are industry tools, Safina should have embraced the science, supported tuna conservation, and applied pressure in ICCAT to change its antiquated management. By attempting to smear Lutcavage and her NOAA colleagues, he demeans science in general and those of us who try to apply scientific approaches to resource management in particular.”