Founder of NC science panel resigns, cites political actions


RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The coastal and marine geologist who helped found a science panel to advise the state on coastal issues has resigned, saying political actions have rendered the once respected group ineffective.

In a letter dated Monday, Stan Riggs of East Carolina University says he’s resigning from the N.C. Coastal Resources Commission’s science panel partially because of controversy over a report on sea-level rise. Instead of projecting for 90 years, as the panel had done previously, it was told to project for 30 years.

Riggs writes that such political actions threaten the viability of North Carolina’s coast.

The chairman of the commission said Tuesday that he appreciates Riggs’ passion and hard work. Chairman Frank Gorham says he will always respect Riggs.

Riggs helped found the panel in 1996.

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