Pachauri attacks climategate as the issue rocks the Summit


Attacking the so-called 'climategate' affair as a bid to undermine the capability of his organisation, Rajendra Pachauri said at the opening ceremony that those who had hacked into the emails of top climate scientists were out to discredit the scientific assessment made of threats to the climate. But the climategate affair rocked the conference with some countries calling for an international probe into the affair, especially accusations that scientists had distorted data to dramatise the threat of global warming.

The Saudi Arabian negotiator Mohammed al-Sabban said that climate science had been "shaken" by the leaked emails. "The level of trust is definitely shaken, now that we are about to conclude an agreement that is going to mean sacrifices for our economies." However, Pachauri stoutly defended his organisation, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, saying, "Giving the wide-ranging nature of change of that is likely to be taken in hand, some naturally find it inconvenient to accept its inevitability."

"The recent incident of stealing the emails of scientists at the University of East Anglia shows that some would go to the extent of carrying out illegal acts perhaps in the attempt to discredit the IPCC," the scientist said. He said that the stealing of emails exchanged between scientists from a UK university indicated the extreme measures some people would adopt to deny the existence of Climate Change. Pachauri defended the scientific integrity of the body as well as its contributors including the scientists caught up in the email controversy.

Hackers gained access to the data of the climate research center of the UK-based University and leaked confidential data including thousands of emails and documents between UK and US scientists over the past ten years that have led to accusations that scientists amplified the nature and scope of the manmade climate crisis. Some of the excerpts of the emails posted read, "I’ve just completed Mike's Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (i.e. from 1981 onwards) and from 1961 for Keith's to hide the decline.

Another email reads- "The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t." Skeptics of Climate Change have used these emails to back their case that the dangers of Climate Change have been wildly exaggerated on several websites and blogs. 

Top UN climate change official Yvo de Boer speaking before the conference said that several parties attending the summit have expressed concern about the leaked emails. Pachauri stressed here that years of dedicated work by the scientific community showed that "the evidence is now overwhelming that the world would benefit greatly from early action and that delay would only lead to costs in economic and human terms that would become progressively high. "The Panel has a record of transparent and objective assessment stretching over 21 years performs by tens of thousands of dedicated scientists from all corners of the globe," he said.

Referring to the scientists who had been named in the emails, Pachauri noted that their work in the IPCC had been substantiated through multiple lines of evidence. "The internal consistency from multiple lines of evidence strongly supports the work of the scientific community including those individuals singled out in these email exchanges many of whom have dedicated their time and effort to develop these findings in teams of lead authors in the series of IPCC assessment reports during the past 21 years," he said.

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