Saturday, August 07, 2010

Memory Hole Recovery

Do the truth a service and help me find the now lost news articles that spread a lie in 1992. The lie was disclosed after Congress and the President enacted a bad law. The efforts to pass that law had been stalled for years, but due to the lie and the air of panic that the press eagerly waged enabled the supporters of the law to impose it upon us. Key people involved in that are up to their necks in the AGW scam, so there is good reason to recover this story.

About two years ago I attempted to locate the news stories and later disclosure of the truth. The reason was due to the participation of Al Gore and NASA in both that 1992 story and the Cap N Tax push. Last night I remembered that effort and tried again. I had better luck this time. I have no idea why.

Here is what I remember.
The law: the ban on Freon; mainly CFC 12.
The lie: An ozone hole had been spotted over New England during a Shuttle fly over.

The lie was released to the press by one of three NASA scientists [name to be discovered] while the contrary opinions of the other two scientists were ignored.
Newt Gingrich rushed a GOP (minority!) bill to the house floor within days, and both houses of Congress and GHWB signed the ban, all accomplished in maybe days.

The facts: By mid April 1992, NASA revealed that there was no hole. No lie was admitted, but a retraction from NASA was announced along the lines of what the other two scientists had said but which had been largely suppressed earlier.
The law remained in place and now new ones based on even worse science are coming to restrict refrigerants. And of course, there is the EPA and its backdoor impositions based on the Post-Normal Science of AGW.

Here is the recent set of keywords I used to search for the news accounts of the day: freon banned 1992 "new england"

So far I've scanned a dozen or so of the top-most stories and links. What I've found are scattered accounts, some of them totally at odds with what happened, the rest are only partially correct. None of the ones I've looked at seem to be in agreement. I remember what happened pretty well, and none of the links give an accurate recounting.

The very fact that the story of the 3 NASA scientists and their disagreement can't be found is very troubling. I suspect that were I able to find a few stories on that, the complete story would emerge.

Dear readers: Please help me recover this one story from what looks too much like an Orwellian memory hole.

Here's an accounting similar to mine. But where are the facts?

This was never more clearly demonstrated than in 1992 when a team of three NASA scientists were monitoring conditions over North America to determine if the ozone layer was in danger. Inconclusive data indicated that conditions might be right for ozone damage over North America—if certain things happened.

Of this three-member NASA team, two could not be sure of what they had found and wanted to do more research. But one took the data and rushed to the microphones with all of the drama of a Hollywood movie and announced in hushed tones that NASA had discovered an ozone hole over North America.

Then Senator Al Gore rushed to the floor of the Senate with the news, and drove a stampede to immediately ban Freon—five years before Congress had intended—and without a suitable substitute. He then bullied President George H.W. Bush to sign the legislation by saying the ozone hole was over Kennebunkport, Maine—Bush’s favorite vacation spot.

Two months later NASA announced—on the back pages of the newspapers—that further research had shown there was no such damage. But it was too late. The valuable comodity known as Freon was gone forever.

By Tom DeWeese December 16, 2004


  1. Not sure whether or not this is helpful...

    It does provide the name (Michael J. Kurylo) of one of the folks from NASA so at the very least it might help you locate more informative articles.

    Interestingly enough, I also stumbled across this article which suggests that freon-free foam may have been a contributing factor in the Columbia space shuttle disaster...

    It also references another article (possibly not available online) about the dissenting opinions in the freon-ozone debate.

    Hope that helps!
    - z

  2. Bizarre.

    I have not found what you seek, but rather something in a near neighborhood, from a surprising source.

    "You may recall that in 1992, there was a report that got a lot of media attention about an ozone hole that might be opening up over the
    North Pole for the first time. It was suggested that it might extend as far south as Kennebunkport, Maine, where the Bush family has a summer home. There was no hole over the North Pole and Kennebunkport was never in danger of getting hit with heavy ultra-violet radiation. That and other scare stories were an essential part of the drive to get freon and other CFC’s banned on the ground that they were responsible for the depletion of the ozone in the stratosphere."

    Outside of this, I've found that most people referencing this event tie it directly to DuPont's patent on Freon expiring. Interesting.

  3. Hey thanks Deb for the heads up.

    Since I've published this request, I've come up with two names from NASA who are likely candidates for the panicky news release later proven false. Michael J. Kurylo and James Anderson. None of the bits I've been able to find are clear which one it is. The former seems to have gone on to have made a career out of atmospheric hysterics.


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