Scientists who saw drowned polar bears reprimanded
BY AP Wire Service
Saturday, September 29, 2012
9/29/12 at 7:34 AM
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - An Alaska scientist whose observations of drowned polar bears helped galvanize the global warming movement has been reprimanded for improper release of government documents.
An Interior Department official said emails released by Charles Monnett were cited by a federal appeals court in decisions to vacate approval by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management of an oil and gas company's Arctic exploration plan.
The official, Walter Cruickshank, deputy director of BOEM, said in a memo that an inspector general's investigation contained findings that Monnett had improperly disclosed internal government documents, which he said were later used against the agency in court.
Cruickshank called Monnett's "misconduct very serious" and said any future misconduct may lead to more severe discipline, including removal from federal service.
Jeff Ruch, executive director of the advocacy group Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, which has been involved in the matter on Monnett's behalf, said Friday that the outcome was "completely unexpected" and that Monnett is confused by it.
Monnett's reprimand could be removed from his record in two years or less.
Original Print Headline: Scientist who saw drowned polar bears reprimanded