Carr warns of a “new cold war’ against researchers

Kim Carr speaks up for scientists working with China

The long-serving research minister in Labor Governments spoke out in the Senate yesterday, criticising “hawks intent on fighting a new cold war” who are critical of academic cooperation with China, and “their eager acolytes in sections of the Australian media.”

Senator Carr singled out The Australian newspaper for coverage of Chinese-Australian university research connections in particular, of a CSIRO-Chinese university ocean research centre.

CSIRO chair Larry Marshall also defends that project, saying the Centre for Southern Hemisphere Oceans Research, is, “governed by independent science leaders and is contributing to Australian, Chinese and global efforts to effectively anticipate and adapt to climate change.”

Senator Carr added that there had been no breaches of the Defence Trade Controls Act since it was adopted in 2012 and no evidence of researchers, “have actually acted as cats paws of a foreign power.”