Common Tragedies

Thoughts on Environmental Economics

Apparently, e-mails can’t change physical reality

Posted by Danny Morris on December 8, 2009

This post originally appeared on Weathervane, RFF’s climate policy blog.

COPENHAGEN — While Climategate has been taking some of the wind out of the already luffing sails of the build up to Copenhagen (at least in the U.S. and Britain), scientists at the conference claim the science remains airtight. In a side event meant to highlight the findings of the Fourth Assessment Report conducted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Chairman Rajendra Pachauri said the only thing that deserves serious attention in relation to this issue is finding who is responsible for the hacking of files from the University of East Anglia. He also reinforced the robustness of IPCC standards and procedures, mentioning that the IPCC will conduct reviews to ensure this remains the case in light of the controversy.

In response to questions from the press, Pachauri emphasized there is no question about the science in the AR4, noting that governments must sign off on the findings of the IPCC before they are released. As much as members of the American and British press continue to harp on the scandal, Pachauri continues to stand by the work of the IPCC. The issue is certainly an attention-getter, as the room is overflowing with observers. Whether Pachauri’s confidence will do anything to quell the naysayers, my guess would be probably not.


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