Saturday, November 28, 2009

Climategate: The video and some thoughts

With the revelations of massive scientific fraud within the global warming community, dubbed "climategate," I have moved from the column of "Global warming believer" to "undecided." I do not make this move lightly. I am not uninformed. I have read extensively on the topic. I was not always a believer; I was once a sceptic. I did not let my political views guide my decision on whether or not to believe the theory of Global Warming. I tried to honestly evaluate the available information and be guided by the facts. Over a period of time, I gradually moved from sceptic to believer and I have been in the "believer" column for at least the last five or six years. I have been convinced that the preponderance of the evidence indicates that global warming is a fact. (See, My Conversion on Global Warming.) Now, I am not so sure.

I am not in the "sceptic" column, yet. There is still a massive body of scholarship that supports the theory. However, this revelation of widespread scientific fraud makes me call into question the whole body of science on this subject. The revelations in the released data puts the burden of proof on those who advocate the theory. The whole topic is again an open question as far as I am concerned.

The main stream media has failed to cover this story and has downplayed it when they have reported it. This can not be allowed to be swept under the rug. This is a smoking gun. Those who believe global warming is a reality need to address this scandal and remake their case for the science supporting the theory.

Below is some of what is revealed from the hacked documents from Britain’s Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia:

The participants in the climategate scandal were a who’s who of climate scientist.

They reveal the destroying of evidence of fraud.

They show the using of “tricks” to modify data that shows the earth is cooling.

They reveal the corrupting of the peer review process.

They reveal the withholding of data.

They reveal the conspiring to pressure and punish skeptical scientist.

They acknowledge the urban effect.

This is serious stuff.

I was with some relatives over the holidays who are true believers who have never doubted global warming. They had not heard of the climategate scandal and were not interested in leaning anything about it. Just as the scientist involved in this scandal had a conclusion and then developed their data to support their conclusion, many people, both sceptics and believers, are locked into a position and don't want any new facts that may make them question their assumptions. To get to the the truth, one needs to be open to considering new data.

I am not asking anyone to accept my opinion of the importance of the climategate scandal, but please be open to evaluating this new revelation and learning more about it and demand answers.

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  1. I'm with you. I don't know if this episode constitutes enough fraud to invalidate the entire global warming theory--probably not. However, good scientists go wherever the data lead--they don't lead the data! And the media should ferret out the story--whatever it is.

  2. This type of thing is fascinating to me, because it leads me to wonder if the same level of corruption is going on in other branches of science, like pharmaceutical sciences or even evolutionary sciences - namely, pressure to mock, castigate (and punish) the skeptical scientists.