Smoke cleared: James Engstrom vindicated

By Michael Greer

TruthLiesI met Dr. Enstrom last year at a Conference on Climate Change in Las Vegas.  We speak on the phone and email each other and are both members of the American Freedom Alliance. He is a Board member and I am an Associate Fellow.  But I was unaware of the valiant fight he was fighting.

He has been fighting to restore his reputation and his work.  In 2010 Dr. Enstrom was fired after over 30 years as a professor/researcher at UCLA.  UCLA’s justification for his firing was that his research was not “aligned with the department’s mission”. Really? What is UCLA’s “mission”? To support truthful science or push a political agenda?

Dr. Enstrom received a PhD. in Physics from Stanford and a M.P.H. in epidemiology from UCLA. His work had been careful, dosage through, health peer-reviewed and respected until the Green Agenda became the cause celeb.

In 2003 Dr. Enstrom published his peer-reviewed research showing second hand smoke didn’t kill people. He was criticized for doing such a study but his research wasn’t disputed. This wasn’t well received by those who want a reason to ban smoking from everywhere.  I don’t smoke but I think those who want to, cure should be able to. I also believe laws should be based on the truth not a political agenda.

He offended the PC police again in 2005 by publishing his peer-reviewed research that showed fine diesel particulate matter isn’t killing people either.  Since CARB’s (California Air Resources Board) banning of diesel engines from California was based on the claim that diesel particulates kill thousands a year, his study didn’t go over well.

Dr. Enstrom questioned the study CARB used to justify their diesel regulations.  He knew the particulate matter wasn’t as high as Hien Tran’s study said it was.  He investigated Tran’s credentials and learned Tran’s PhD. from UC Davis was purchased for $1000 from a diploma mill.  It is my understanding that Tran’s “study” was also fraudulent. That he used a study done in a different state.   But what is more disturbing is that Mary Nichols, chairwoman of CARB, knew of Mr. Tran’s fraudulent diplomas before the vote on diesel emissions and kept the information from most of the members of the board.

This fraudulent study was the basis on CARB’s onerous regulations on diesel trucks and buses. It caused business owners tens of thousands of dollars to refit or replace their trucks.   This was an outrageous, expensive and completely unnecessary regulation imposed on California businesses.  And, of course, ultimately, the costs get passed on to you and me in higher prices.


Dr. James Engstrom

Dr. Enstrom’s investigation into CARB also resulted in the removal of scientist John Froines.  He had served 25 years on the board when there is a three year term limit. Froines being on the board that long prevented other more objective scientists from serving on the board.  Coincidentally, Froines was also a voting member of UCLA’s Environmental Sciences Department that terminated Dr. Enstrom.

The American Center for Law and Justice represented Dr. Enstom in a wrongful termination suit and last week UCLA agreed to settle. They reinstated him with the title of “retired researcher” and restored his access to UCLA’s research resources.  It’s not the vindication he deserves, but we’ll take it.  Dr. Enstrom was right but he was fired, Hien Tran was a fraud but he is still employed by CARB.

Remember, the results of Dr. Enstrom’s research were peer-reviewed and not proven wrong.  UCLA was upset that he did the research because it disagreed with their “Green” agenda.  They didn’t want to risk losing grants and funding that come from the government and environmental groups.  Professor Stephen Schneider said in the documentary, “Cool It”, that they had to give scary scenarios to get funding.

These days if you want a grant to study Three Toed Tree Frogs, you better study the effects of Climate Change on Three Toed Tree Frogs…..and it’s doubtful you’ll get more funding if your study doesn’t find a negative effect from Climate Change.

You can tell when the Left thinks it’s narrative is losing.  They go from push to shove.  The public’s interest in Global Warming isn’t even in the top 20 issues they are concerned with.  As time passes and NONE of scary prediction have come to fruition, the scientists (and there are tens of thousands of them) who disagree with anthropogenic climate change are being heard, in spite of our government, our universities and our media doing their best to silence them.  Now the Left is in shoving mode. They are trying to discredit and slander the scientists who disagree with them.  Scientists whose work has been highly respected for decades are being called “flat-earthers”.

In the last few weeks both our President and our Secretary of State have told the public Climate Change is more of a threat to us than ISIS.  And Al Gore said last week Climate Change deniers should be punished.

We need more James Enstrom’s who are willing to do the honest research and stand up to the criticism.  Congratulations to him for winning his fight and protecting scientific integrity.


More On Dr. Engstrom

Michael Greer

Michael Greer


Michael Greer retired from the film/television industry and is the co-organizer of the Santa Monica Tea Party and the Los Angeles Tea Party, on the board of directors of the Citizens’ Alliance for Property Rights and was a member of the Republican Central Committee for the 41st Assembly District.  Her website is:

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