New York Times Posts a Correction

In a front page story in the Sunday, April 26th New York Times, environmental reporter John Cushman portrayed a proposal by the American Petroleum Institute to put the views of the thousands of scientists before the public as a covert and sinister plot. (Unlike the action taken by 13 "virtuous" corporations, including several oil companies with solar/wind subsidiaries, when they lined up behind former State Dept. official Eileen Claussen and $5 million from Pew Charitable Trusts to secure the profitable goodies promised in the Clinton Administration's global warming package.)

The Science & Environmental Policy Project does not participate in industry-organized communications proposals on global warming; to be frank, dissenting scientists are beginning to raise enough Hell on their own. Nevertheless Mr. Cushman tossed SEPP into his story anyway, along with other individuals and groups that also work independently.

We complained. It took five e-mail messages to John Cushman and, finally, a fax yesterday to NYT Assistant Managing Editor Allan M. Siegal to get the following "correction" published--19 days after Cushman's story appeared and 11 days after he confirmed that his information was wrong.

Mr. Siegal said he could offer no reasonable explanation for the delay, and that Mr. Cushman was terribly "embarrassed."

Cushman's April 26th story ran above-the-fold on page A-1; the correction, of course, when it finally appeared, was at the bottom of page A-2:

An article on April 26 about a proposal to promote skeptical scientific views of the theory of global warming included an organization incorrectly among the proposal's advocates. The Science and Environmental Policy Project was invited to participate but declined, according to its spokeswoman, Candace Crandall. A spokesman for the American Petroleum Institute confirms that a memorandum by an employee, on which the article was based, identified Crandall incorrectly as a member of the committee that drafted the proposal.

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