Red tape puts chill on Siberian research


Siberian Sampling

Siberian Sampling - D. Schulze

Is this where we’re headed for environmental research in Canada, cutting jobs from Environment Canada and hiring for Corrections Canada?

Nature: Red tape puts chill on Siberian research

High-profile carbon project to proceed, but with a proviso.

One of Russia‘s most prominent inter­national science projects has fallen foul of cold-war-era concerns. An expedition to study carbon transport around Siberia’s Yenisey River has been postponed for a year after officials blocked the use of sampling equipment and put some sites off-limits. The episode highlights the tension between Russia’s bureaucracy and its growing ambition to develop wider research collaborations — part of a strategy to revitalize domestic science.

In July, Ernst-Detlef Schulze, a carbon-cycle researcher and founding director of the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Jena, Germany, and 35 scientists from Germany, the Netherlands, France and Russia, had their bags packed for the journey to Siberia.

Then they received a letter from the Russian Federal Security Service prohibiting them from using any Western equipment on the trip. Schulze, who last year received a 150-million-rouble (US$5-million) grant from the Russian government to do research in Siberia, was aghast. “When I first saw the letter I just couldn’t believe what I read,” he says. “I was so disappointed and furious I went to my own forest and lumbered trees until I was exhausted.”

More … Nature, Quirin Schiermeier (Click here)

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2 Responses to Red tape puts chill on Siberian research

  1. George Ennis says:

    I expect in 2025 to be reading headlines like :

    “American and Russian leaders were stunned by news that the earth is experiencing rapid climate change. Leaders in both countries condemned the failure of climatologists to warn them of the dangers and promised to launch an investigation into the conspiracy to cover up the link between CO2 gas emissions and climate change. In an unrelated news item both countries promised to expand the exploitation of coal and oil in order to create jobs.”

    I agree with Lovelock that we are simply too stupid a species to survive much beyond the next 200 years.

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