Posted by Oliver Morton on behalf of Alex Witze
It’s not easy being a US state climatologist — reporters call you every time a freak storm happens, the title generally carries more glory than pay, and every once in a while the governor starts paying attention to what you’re doing.
Patrick J. Michaels, the longtime state climatologist for Virginia, has finally thrown in the towel. A noted sceptic on climate change (see our earlier story), Michaels retired this summer after saying the position had become too politicized for him to function.
Nature reporter Jeff Tollefson has a brief update here (Oct. 4 issue, page 521[I’ll post a link when the issue goes live]). A note of warning to the guy who replaces Michaels: you might steer clear of accepting funding from the oil and gas industry while you’re in the job.
— Alex Witze