The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is hoarding vast amounts of raw data that independent marine researchers say could help both the public and scientists better understand the extent of the damage being caused by the massive BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
In most cases, NOAA insists on putting the data through a ponderous, many-weeks-long vetting process before making it public.
In other cases, NOAA actually intended to keep the data secret indefinitely. But officials told the Huffington Post on Tuesday that they have now decided to release it -- though when remains unclear.
BP, incidentally, gets to see all this data right away.
NOAA, it needs to be remembered, is already mired in a Climategate scandal in which at least 5 satellites intended to prove global warming have been revealed as over-stating measured temperatures by as much as 10-15 degrees F.