Here, finally, are some solid facts about the Oregon state climatologist position that supposedly is occupied by George Taylor, who minimizes both global warming and the impact humans are having on global climate change.
For well over a week I’ve been waiting for answers from the Oregon State University (OSU) News and Communication Office to my questions about Taylor and the “state climatologist” title that he holds.
Patience pays off. I just got a couple of emails from Mark Floyd. At the end of this post you’ll find, verbatim, the first message he sent me. After I read it, I wrote back to Mark, asking him to correct me if I was wrong about any of five assumptions. His reply concerning each is shown in italics.
(1) There is no position called “state climatologist” authorized by the State of Oregon.
As far as I know, you are correct on No. 1.
(2) The title of “state climatologist” has been given to the head of the Oregon Climate Service by OSU.
No. 2 also is correct, though it is stated simply, which ignores the context of history.
(3) Within Oregon state government, there is no description of what the job of state climatologist entails, nor a list of duties, because the person who has this title doesn’t occupy an actual position with that name.
No. 3: OSU is, in fact, a state agency of sorts. If your intent is to ask if there is a governor-appointed state climatologist, I assume the answer is no, though that is a question for the governor.
(4) Because Taylor does something similar to what the person who truly was the state climatologist did previously, he’s called the “state climatologist,” even though this position doesn’t exist.
No. 4: That sounds right. You should know that the origin, funding, duties, and history of state climatologists vary from state to state.
(5) The American Association of State Climatologists recognizes Taylor as the state climatologist because OSU has given him this title, even though the position doesn’t exist in state statute.
No. 5: I can’t assume the reasons the AASC recognizes Taylor as state climatologist. It may or may not be because of his OSU-given title. There may be several reasons. I can’t speak for the group.
Well, this vindicates what I’ve been saying here and here, along with Kari Chisholm, the governor, state Sen. Brad Avakian, and others who recognize (even without the OSU News and Communication Office clarification) that Taylor isn’t really the state climatologist, because the title he wears so proudly has no actual position attached to it.
Hopefully this will stop such right-wing claptrap as “Tucker Carlson’s Hot Air on Kulongoski and Climate Change.” And World Net Daily’s putting George Taylor in the same censored scientist category as Galileo. Give me a break.
Indeed, there’s been a lot of conservative hot air expended on Taylor and the state climatologist position. Now that it’s been confirmed that such a position doesn’t exist, so there’s no way he can be fired from it, maybe they’ll turn their attention to a real problem: global warming.
Here’s Mark Floyd’s message:
The history of the climate service and state climatologist go back to 1978, when OSU and NOAA signed a memorandum of understanding to establish the Office of the State Climatologist at Oregon State University. The first person to serve in that position, I believe, was Allan Murphy. In 1982, Kelly Redmond joined the OSU Department of Atmospheric Sciences and served as assistant state climatologist in the Center for Climatic Research. He took over as state climatologist in 1984, funded by a combination of state funds and external grants.
The Office of the State Climatologist was eliminated in 1989 because of budget cuts and Redmond left the university. George Taylor was hired on a part-time basis in 1989 in the Department of Atmospheric Sciences as a meteorologist. Two years later (1991), Oregon Senate Bill 661 passed, establishing the Oregon Climate Service at OSU. Taylor was hired on a full-time basis, and the department head in atmospheric science at that time requested to OSU that Taylor’s title be changed from meteorologist to state climatologist because his role was so similar to that which Redmond held.
By the way, George Taylor is past president of the American Association of State Climatologists, and the Oregon Climate Service is a recognized state climate office, as certified by that association…
OSU News and Communication