Aussie CSIRO boss Larry Marshall: Politics of climate ‘more like religion than science’

CSIRO chief Larry Marshall has apologised for describing the emotion of the climate debate as almost “more religion than science”.

Key points:The CSIRO boss apologises for referencing religion in climate debateHe said he was referring to the ‘passionate zeal around the issue’Dr Marshall defended this CSIRO shake-up, despite international backlash

Dr Marshall had told the ABC the backlash from his decision to restructure the organisation made him feel like an “early climate scientist in the ’70s fighting against the oil lobby” and that there was so much emotion in the debate it almost “sounded more like religion than science”.

He also said he would not be backing down on his controversial shakeup of the organisation’s climate divisions, telling the ABC he was yet to be persuaded.

At Senate estimates Thursday afternoon he backed away from those comments.

“I’d like to apologise for any offence I may have caused to anyone with respect to my reference to religion,” Dr Marshall said.

“I was merely referring to the passionate zeal around this issue, not any other reference, and I deeply apologise.”