Investigation ends with letter of reprimand for leaking emails
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY —A Kafka-esque federal probe of a polar biologist ended inconclusively this week, as biologist Charles Monnett got a mild slap on the wrist for an alleged breach of policy that was unrelated to the focus of the 2.5-year investigation.
No charges will be brought against the Monnett regarding his high-profile research on polar bears, according to documents released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, but according to the Alaska Dispatch, the federal government still maintains that Monnett and a co-researcher may have used incomplete and perhaps even false data in writing a report about polar bear drownings.
According to the Alaska Dispatch, the Inspector General report also suggested that Monnett “intended to manipulate data to meet a personal agenda, including influencing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s decision to list the polar bear under the Endangered Species Act.”
To this point, Monnett has received a letter of reprimand for allegedly improper disclosures back in 2007 and 2008 which helped reveal that Bush administration suppressed scientific information about oil drilling impacts.
Investigation of federal scientists takes a strange turn during latest round of interviews
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — If Franz Kafka were still alive, he’d no doubt be closely following the curious case of the ongoing investigation swirling around a pair of federal scientists who helped raise public awareness about environmental issues in the Arctic.
The report concluded that the EPA met existing legal requirements for making its finding, as well as guidance aimed at ensuring the quality of the supporting technical information. Nothing in the IG report challenges the fundamental science used as a basis for the endangerment finding.
U.S. has spent $70 billion on reconstruction, but there’s a risk that some of the money may be funding insurgents
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — U.S. aid to Afghanistan is under scrutiny once again after an Inspector General report last week showed that little accountability for where the funds are going.
Sen. Mark Udall said the report suggests that some of the funds are at risk of being diverted for fraudulent purposes or to insurgent networks, potentially helping the enemy.
“We absolutely need strong measures in place to ensure that the billions of dollars we send through Afghanistan’s banks and financial sector are used in the way they were intended,” Udall said in a press release. “I read the IG’s report with dismay. It appears that there isn’t sufficient coordination among U.S. agencies or sufficient controls over how U.S. funds are used. The stakes here are enormous, since the inadvertent diversion of aid dollars to insurgents could result in funding the very forces who oppose our goals in Afghanistan. Continue reading “Udall says Afghanistan aid dollars subject to fraud”→