Texas Board of Ed Neuters Science Textbooks' Global Warming Language

texas state flag photo

photo: Alexander Steffler via flickr

Much of the discussion around the Texas Board of Education's textbook requirements has focused on the teaching of evolution, creationism, intelligent design, et cetera. But one thing which the Environmental Defense Fund is pointing out and which has fallen though the cracks is the revised wording on how textbooks are going to present global climate change:"Different View on the Existence..."
Last Wednesday the Texas State Board of Ed changed the language in a school textbook chapter on Environmental Systems to include the follow phrase regarding the teaching of climate change,

analyze and evaluate different views on the existence of global warming.

Which I suppose would be fine if the intent was simply to mention that though there are some people who deny that global climate change is happening, the IPCC (as well as numerous other august scientific organizations including the National Academy of Sciences), says that the changes we are witnessing to the global climate are not part of natural cycles and that human activity is the most likely cause of these change.

But it doesn't seem like that's the intent. Dr Ramon Alvarez, senior scientist at EDF said that not only is the Board of Education ignoring its own science advisors, but,

In a last-minute assault on science and sensibility, the board appears to be supporting its own ideological views rather than those of proven science. Experts around the country, including the tenured faculty of Texas A&M;'s Department of Atmospheric Sciences, agree that our climate is warming and that humans are responsible.

More on the Texas textbook science standards: Chron.com
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