Carnivore Coexistence Collaborative
Public scientists have a duty to advocate for the broad public including future generations, for good governance, for fulfilling the duties of public trustees, and for the best available science. The Carnivore Coexistence Collaborative (CCC) reports on advocacy by its members listed below.
A note about advocacy and science
Sometimes scientists criticize each other for advocacy. All scientists advocate for our science including the process, methods, interpretations, and communication of it. Even if they don't realize they are doing it, each scientific communication we make is advocating for our science. It seems the activist part of that advocacy is what scientists most are actually shying away from - the idea of being vocal and out there in advocacy for science. The other misconception might be the idea that ANY advocacy is biasing. But that myth has been debunked by several fields of scholarship proving that we scientists all approach questions (and how we answer them) with some viewpoint that shapes the questions we ask and don't ask, as much as the answers we get and emphasize. So, subjectivity enters into science and may create bias. The trick lies in reducing bias and making it transparent if some remains. That trick is a work in progress for most (all?) scientists and we here have chosen transparency about our value judgments andor starting assumptions. See our transparent statement of value judgments here.. Beware of the scientists who do not make their value judgments transparent.
Adrian TrevesExpert testimony:Dr. Treves served as an expert witness not he following cases:
Other advocacy: Endangered Species Day 2016: 968 scientists and scholars petition the federal government to make determinations under the Endangered Species Act based solely on the best scientific and commercial data available (16 USC § 1531). See the scientific petition sent to Secretaries Jewell and Pritzker (of the U.S. Departments of Interior and Commerce).
Working with the Union of Concerned Scientists: Scientists Push for Independent Science at the Fish and Wildlife Service.
Scientists working together to advocate for better use of science in species listing and delisting decisions can lead to real change in ESA implementation.
In 2015, a group of scientists, working with the Union of Concerned Scientists and Project Coyote, launched a petition asking the Department of the Interior (DOI) and the Department of Commerce (DOC) to follow a process for obtaining independent scientific advice on listing and delisting decisions under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) See the scientific petition sent to Secretaries Jewell and Pritzker (of the U.S. Departments of Interior and Commerce).. Led by UCS Science Network member and associate professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Adrian Treves and attracting nearly a thousand signatories, the scientists’ letter outlines how the ESA mandate for best available science could be improved by relying on external, independent scientific input, without interference from non-scientists. The scientists asked the DOI and DOC to entrust the scientific evaluation of species listing and de-listing determinations to an external committee of scientists who are best suited to assess the scientific evidence and make a public recommendation to the agency, based solely on the best scientific and commercial data available, as the ESA requires.
Following the petition launch, the FWS issued a new and improved peer review policy for the agency. The new policy is a step forward in safeguarding the science that informs endangered species listing; it provides a clear and consistent, agency-wide framework that improves the separation between scientific status assessments and policy decisions, provides more clarity around agency procedures when decisions are controversial, and increases transparency (Goldman et al. 2016). While the provisions could be stronger in a few areas, the new policy takes strong steps toward more robust and transparent peer-review at the agency.
Research funding won by Adrian Treves as of 14 May 2016, which we provide for transparency and full disclosure.
2016: Letter to the Michigan government on wolf management.
November 30, 2015 : 70+ scientists, legal experts, and scholars recommended that wolves be kept under ESA protection.
October 28, 2015 : Dr. Adrian Treves commented on the Oregon state wolf delisting proposal. He found (1) Oregon’s delisting criteria have not been met, and (2) The main threat to wolf population viability is not adequately understood by any state or federal agency yet, therefore the expected benefits of delisting are unlikely to manifest and the likely costs are not well addressed by current regulatory mechanisms..
February 2016 Multiple scientists weigh in on Oregon's wolf delisting process.
June 13, 2014 and October 17, 2014: We opposed proposed predator killing derbies and wildlife killing contests as serving no value for management or science, and contrary to the government agency policies responsible for land and wildlife management.
Petition to USFWS to list the Florida black bear hunt as federally threatened or endangered.
Affidavit for an amicus brief filed by plaintiffs charging the Florida black bear hunt was not science-based.
Letter to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service from scientists concerned about Wisconsin wolf policy and management. (updated October 15th, 2014).