The Daily brief: July 19, 2010

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July 19, 2010, 8:07 p.m.

Stephen Schneider | The Stanford biology professor and climate scientist Stephen Schneider died Monday at age 65 of an apparent heart attack, said his wife, Terry Root, another Stanford biologist. Tributes poured in from around the Web, an early one coming from Andrew Revkin at The New York Times, where the occasion was marked as “the passing of a climate warrior.”

Former Vice President Al Gore, with whom Schneider shared a 2007 Nobel Prize as part of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, called the scientist “a wonderful communicator” whose contributions “will be sorely missed.” At The Bay Citizen, Gerry Shih ’09 reported on the personal security measures Schneider and his wife took in the past year under increasing threats from extremists who rejected evidence for human-driven climate change. “He certainly never shied away from the fight with climate deniers,” said Dan Lashof of the Natural Resources Defense Council in the Mercury News. “I don’t know if he relished it, but he wasn’t willing to cede any ground.” Matt Petersen of Global Green USA said at The Huffington Post that he last saw Schneider with students at the Copenhagen talks this winter. Paul Erlich, the Stanford population biologist, spoke of Schneider working through “absolute misery” during his bout with cancer. John Holdren, science adviser to President Obama, spoke to NPR about Schneider.

Stanford Magazine published an interview with Schneider in its July-August 2010 issue. The University said later Monday memorial service details are pending.

Restraining order | Stanford is seeking a restraining order against a former employee for his alleged attempts to intimidate a current employee involved in his firing.

Smoking | A Stanford researcher urges the federal government to consider a ban on point-of-sale tobacco advertising, which she says puts teens at risk.

Family planning | Stanford participates in the Family Planning Fellowship, a program to train doctors in contraception and abortion that is quietly funded by the foundation of Warren Buffett’s late wife, Susan Thompson Buffett. — New York Times Magazine, “The New Abortion Providers.”

Commentary | At The Washington Post, Stanford economics professor and Hoover senior fellow Michael Boskin calls the Obama administration’s stimulus measures “a tragic wasted opportunity.”

Overheard | “There is no way to know in advance what the value of [personal] information is.” — M. Ryan Calo of the Stanford Center for Internet and Society on the economics of “privacy pricing.”

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