"A climate scientist ignited controversy Tuesday when he claimed that he withheld key details of his wildfire research to fit “preapproved narratives” on climate risks in order to be published in one of the world’s most esteemed science publications.
The researcher, Patrick Brown, said he omitted “the full truth” about nonclimate causes of wildfire, such as insufficient forest management, from a peer-reviewed study that showed how rising temperatures are increasing the risk of wildfire, because he suspected editors of the journal Nature would have rejected his research if it failed to exclusively blame human-caused greenhouse gases for intensifying blazes. Nature said his claims were untrue.
“I knew not to try to quantify key aspects other than climate change in my research because it would dilute the story that prestigious journals like Nature and its rival, Science, want to tell,” Brown wrote in an opinion piece published by the Free Press.
Brown was hailed as a whistleblower by some conservative media outlets that sometimes promote falsehoods around climate change. His accusations were covered by FoxNews.com and the New York Post with headlines that indicated Brown’s claims were evidence of corruption in climate science.
But the editor-in-chief of Nature, Magdalena Skipper, said Brown’s assertions were demonstrably false."