On Tuesday, a paper signed by more than 11,000 scientists declaring a climate emergency was published in the journal BioScience.
The signatories included climate scientists and researchers from other fields, such as microbiology, glaciology and oceanography.
However, at least one name on the list is raising questions: Micky (sic) Mouse from the Micky Mouse Institute for the Blind in Namibia.
When asked how Micky made it on the list, William Ripple, one of the authors of the paper, said in an email that he and his colleagues used a four-step process to check the signatures but that this one seems to have “slipped through our checks.”
He said the vetting process involved:
- Removing duplicate signatures;
- Scanning the list for invalid (fake) names and removing them;
- Removing signatures of individuals who are non-scientists;
- Removing signatures with no associated professional position or institution.
The website hosting the climate declaration was down most of Tuesday and Wednesday because of high traffic and was updated with a message that read: “Viewing signatures is currently unavailable. We are correcting the list of scientist signatories on our website based on an additional validation process.”
On Thursday morning, the site was updated and said it had “removed 34 names from the original list, most of which were duplicates.”