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Statehouses introduce ALEC climate skeptic school bill

A new investigation finds three states this year introduced a model bill to spread climate science "mis-education"


Natasha Lennard
January 31, 2013 10:39PM (UTC)

Arizona, Oklahoma and Colorado this year joined the dubious list of states to have this year introduced a bill that would mandate the teaching of climate change skepticism in public school systems, according to an investigation by DeSmogBlog's Steve Horn. Horn reported that the Environmental Literacy Improvement Act, a model bill written by the American Legislative Exchange Council with libertarian, climate-skeptic think tank the Heartland Institute, is already gaining ground in statehouses around the country.

Horn notes:

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In the past five years since 2008, among the hottest years in U.S. history, ALEC has introduced its "Environmental Literacy Improvement Act" in 11 states, or over one-fifth of the statehouses nationwide. The bill has passed in four states, an undeniable form of "big government" this "free market" organization decries in its own literature.

In all three of the latest states to introduce the bills, the identikit legislation is being sponsored by lawmakers who are also dues-paying members of ALEC.

Under the guise of imparting critical thinking through the public school curriculum, the model bill in its various iterations mandates that global warming be presented as "a theory" steeped in "controversy."


Natasha Lennard

Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email nlennard@salon.com.

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