There's no question Europe is more anti-science than North America; it's the home of the 'vaccines cause autism' craze, anti-biology fanaticism, anti-energy fanaticism and the belief that cell phones cause cancer and scientists should go to jail if they can't predict an earthquake.

Like America, as government has taken more control of science research, science research has become more politicized. 

The latest victim are German researchers in Canada. Environmental activism in Germany has caused the Helmholtz Association, Germany's largest scientific organization, to pull out of joint research with Alberta on better ways to upgrade oilsands bitumen.

What were they working on with Canadian scientists? Waste-water management, carbon capture, geothermal power, land reclamation and improved ways to upgrade bitumen. German activists want all fossil fuels gone, not improved so that we have a cleaner environment while we bridge to cleaner sources.

"There is an ongoing campaign here in Germany with regard to oilsands, but also with regard to climate protection," said Bernd Schneider, lead scientific co-ordinator. "We have this energy transition discussion here in Germany, which is quite intensive."

Upside: It dispels the notion for German scientists that they are 18 "independent" research organizations and squarely shows that they are politically controlled.

Progressive anti-science activists feel like this is a victory. And it is, for them. It's just another loss for science.

German scientists quit oilsands research program - The Canadian Press