Despite regular attempts by head in the sand AGW cheerleaders to make it go away, Climategate continues to affect the path of climate science. This endorsement of the Climategate effect comes from a most unlikely source, The Guardian’s Fred Pearce, who also writes for The New Scientist. Most telling about all of the investigations so far is that they have not interviewed any of the primary investigators that question the methods and data, such as Steve McIntyre.
The investigations thus far are much like having a trial with judge, jury, reporters, spectators, and defendant, but no plaintiff. The plaintiff is locked outside the courtroom sitting in the hall hollering and hoping the jury hears some of what he has to say. Is it any wonder the verdicts keep coming up “not guilty”?
To summarize: it’s a whitewash in the purest sense of the word. I don’t expect career team player Sir Muir Russell’s report to be any different. He’s too much of an familial insider to have the courage to ask the plaintiff to get involved, and he didn’t. But Steve McIntyre is going anyway. Hopefully they’ll have the courage to hear what he has to say and not lock him out in the hallway. – Anthony
‘Climategate’ was ‘a game-changer’ in science reporting, say climatologists
After the hacked emails scandal scientists became ‘more upfront, open and explicit about their uncertainties’
Sir Muir Russell’s findings will be published on Wednesday. Photograph: University of Glasgow
Excerpts from the Guardian article:
Science has been changed forever by the so-called “climategate” saga, leading researchers have said ahead of publication of an inquiry into the affair – and mostly it has been changed for the better.
This Wednesday sees the publication of the Muir Russell report into the conduct of scientists from the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU), whose emails caused a furore in November after they were hacked into and published online.
Critics say the emails reveal evasion of freedom of information law, secret deals done during the writing of reports for the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a cover-up of uncertainties in key research findings and the misuse of scientific peer review to silence critics.
But whatever Sir Muir Russell, the chairman of the Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland, concludes on these charges, senior climate scientists say their world has been dramatically changed by the affair.
“The release of the emails was a turning point, a game-changer,” said Mike Hulme, professor of climate change at the University of East Anglia. “The community has been brought up short by the row over their science. Already there is a new tone. Researchers are more upfront, open and explicit about their uncertainties, for instance.”
And there will be other changes, said Hulme. The emails made him reflect how “astonishing” it was that it had been left to individual researchers to police access to the archive of global temperature data collected over the past 160 years. “The primary data should have been properly curated as an archive open to all.” He believes that will now happen.
“Trust has been damaged,” said Hans von Storch of the KGSS Research Centre in Geesthacht, Germany. “People now find it conceivable that scientists cheat and manipulate, and understand that scientists need societal supervision as any other societal institution.”
The climate scientist most associated with efforts to reconciling warring factions, Judith Curry of the Georgia Institute of Technology, said the idea of IPCC scientists as “self-appointed oracles, enhanced by the Nobel Prize, is now in tatters”. The outside world now sees that “the science of climate is more complex and uncertain than they have been led to believe”.
Roger Pielke Jr of the University of Colorado agreed that “the climate science community, or at least its most visible and activist wing, appeared to want to go back to waging an all-out war on its perceived political opponents”.
He added: “Such a strategy will simply exacerbate the pathological politicisation of the climate science community.” In reality, he said, “There is no going back to the pre-November 2009 era.”
But greater openness and engagement with their critics will not ensure that climate scientists have an easier time in future, warns Hulme. Back in the lab, a new generation of more sophisticated computer models is failing to reduce the uncertainties in predicting future climate, he says – rather, the reverse. “This is not what the public and politicians expect, so handling and explaining this will be difficult.”
Full story at the Guardian h/t to Tallbloke and WUWT reader Pat