James Hansen pre-arrest 2013

Talk about biting the hand that feeds you!

NASA’s James Hansen, director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies and a controversial and highly vocal voice of alarm about the planet’s changing climate, will retire as the director of the space institute, NASA announced Tuesday — and plans to immediately sue his former employer

Hansen will step down from his $180,000 a year position to join a number of lawsuits challenging the federal and state governments for their failure to police industry over man’s effect on the climate, the New York Times reported.

Hansen was clearly aware of the irony.

“As a government employee, you can’t testify against the government,” he told the Times.

Hansen is a central figure in the battle against climate change; on Feb. 13, he was arrested alongside of actress Daryl Hannah, activist Bill McKibben and a small group of activists protesting the planned Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada to the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.