Questionable Motives

December 4, 2009

How worried should we be: the leaked ‘Climategate’ emails and what they mean

AGW means anthropogenic global warming as the theory that best describes how human activity drives climate change. But is the theory sound? There seems to be scientific consensus that it is sound, and this the central platform from the United Nation’s International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that will be presented to the heads of states in Copenhagen.

So how do these ‘leaked’ emails affect the IPCC position?

The emails suggest the authors co-operated covertly to ensure that only papers favorable to CO2-forced AGW were published, and that editors and journals publishing contrary papers were punished. They also attempted to “discipline” scientists and journalists who published skeptical information.

The emails suggest that the authors manipulated and “massaged” the data to strengthen the case in favor of unprecedented CO2-forced AGW, and to suppress their own data if it called AGW into question.

The emails suggest that the authors co-operated (perhaps the word is “conspired”) to prevent data from being made available to other researchers through either data archiving requests or through the Freedom of Information Acts of both the U.S. and the UK.

A good summary here.

I don’t think the high risk to affecting climate by greenhouse gas emissions has been undermined; I think these emails draws into question whether the AGW theory is sound enough science to conclude that human activity drives climate change. Dissenting evidence may have been purposefully ignored and buried, which has changed the data upon which the IPCC depends for its conclusions. Check out what the fudged numbers look like on the right side of the graph. That kind of misrepresentation is serious.

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