The first rule of vindicating climate science is you do not talk about vindicating climate science

UK Government:  “It is a primary concern to the Government that the evidence base for policies is robust. Where this evidence base is questioned, it is right that allegations are properly assessed and scrutinised. After two independent reviews, and two reviews by the Science and Technology Committee, we find no evidence to question the scientific basis of human influence on the climate….

“Evidence from multiple disciplines and sources strongly indicates that climate change, driven by human activities, poses real risks for our future. This evidence is comprehensively captured in the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and in more recent analyses including from the US National Research Council of the National Academies. It is also clear from an almost continuous body of publications in the academic literature that the evidence for human induced climate change continues to grow….”

You won’t find much U.S. media coverage of the official UK “Government Response” to “The Reviews into the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit’s E-mails” by the Science and Technology Committee of the House of Commons.

I think that is because:

  1. It re-re-re-re-vindicates climate scientists, and since the media glossed over the first three vindications, why start now?
  2. It didn’t involve a wedding.

There is a pretty good BBC story, “Climate e-mail reviews ‘leave science sound’.”  Here’s more from the Government Response.  First, their bottom line:

The findings of the Committee give us confidence in our judgement that the conclusions are well thought through and that no events at CRU undermine the scientific consensus on human-induced climate change.

What about the claim that CRU had somehow been trying to undermine the peer review process?  The Science and Technology Committee had said:

The conclusions reached by the Independent Climate Change E-mails Review (ICCER) are in line with our predecessor Committee’s findings that “the evidence they saw did not suggest that Professor Jones was trying to subvert the peer review process and that academics should not be criticised for making informal comments on academic papers”. We stand by this conclusion and are satisfied with the detailed analysis of the allegations by the ICCER.

The UK Government agrees with that conclusion:

The Government notes the Committee’s conclusion that there was no evidence of attempts to subvert the peer review process, and agrees that academics should not be criticised for commenting informally on academic papers, noting that constructive criticism and challenge is fundamental to ensuring a robust scientific approach.

There are various issues surrounding the Oxburgh and Muir-Russell inquiries, which the response deals with and which The Carbon Brief summarizes in its post, “The science is solid, it is time to move on – the UK government view on climategate.”

Last year, the science journal Nature editorialized, “Scientists must now emphasize the science, while acknowledging that they are in a street fight.” Apparently the rules of climate science street fight club only apply to the climate science side of things, since the anti-science disinformers can pretty much  talk about anything they want and get coverage.

If anyone can find any serious U.S. media coverage of this, please post it.

The bottom line is that climate science remains as solid as ever, which is what people ought to be reporting on and worrying about (see “A stunning year in climate science reveals that human civilization is on the precipice,  The first anniversary of ‘Climategate’: The media blows the story of the century”).

Related Posts:

The Reviews into the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit’s E-mails

9 Responses to The first rule of vindicating climate science is you do not talk about vindicating climate science

  1. When a government or organization investigates scientific organizations that have been under attack in the media it only draws attention to the “allegations” at best and makes it appear that there are reasons for questioning the legitimacy of the science. Furthermore it provides fodder for skeptics on their blogs, newspapers, radio and television programs. But when they are vindicated? As you have pointed out on this and other occasions, no coverage. Furthermore, “skeptics” only have to claim or intimate that it is simply part of the conspiracy to extend government power. No one benefits from putting the science and scientists on trial but the “skeptics.”

  2. Mike Roddy says:

    Yup. McIntyre is still obsessing over Jones, and I wish even his readers would read the British Government report. Now I see why they have been unable to so far.

    This constitutes negligence on the part of US media. Ask a person on the street about “Climategate” or Jones, and if he has heard of them he will say it’s a major scientific scandal.

  3. David Smith says:

    So tell me again, why doesn’t any of this blow back into a major investigation into those who are hell-bent on convincing us all that the scientific community has created the mother of all conspiracies? Oh, that’s right, we’re broke, spine-less and have no effective strategy.


  4. David Smith:

    Oh, that’s right, we’re broke, spine-less and have no effective strategy.

    Mostly because “we” are spineless — and the other two problems stem from there.

    “We” don’t have an effective strategy, because “we” don’t seem to want one. Almost whenever someone brings up the problem of how to strategize on climate action, they’re faced with, well, a wall of complete silence.

    Or even worse, we get a lot of useless whining about how ‘we’re just no good at doing PR, we’re just no good at doing PR, we’re just no good at doing PR’ (and please, let us stay that way), or how we should just cave in to the climate criminals and call that some sort of ‘strategic victory’.

    Similarly, “we” are broke because “we” want to be broke. When was the last time there was a huge, frank, public discussion in the open on how to raise funds for climate action?

    * * *

    As for why there’s no loud call to investigate SwiftHack? Beats me. My closest guess is that everyone has his own pet conspiracy theory about who were behind SwiftHack — it’s the Russians, or maybe it’s the Saudis, or folks affiliated with the CIA or NSA, or maybe it’s the think tanks, or whoever — and they prefer to cling to their own conspiracy theories, rather than have someone launch an actual investigation to find out the truth.

    Me, I’d still like to know the truth. I like the idea of being surprised by the truth.


  5. “Climate Science” is rarely used in the news and I recommend we use it more often to continue to spread the education of climate impact.

  6. Hegbad says:

    ‘Climategate’ did have some value. It provided a case where you did not need to understand any science at all. A grasp of the English language was all that was required to come to the exact same conclusion as the public inquiries. So it demonstrated – conclusively – that the people making bogus accusations were really the bad guys all along.

  7. pete best says:

    You have to wonder how long it will be before there is enough support for government action on ACC that is significant enough to start to reduce emissions of CO2. When you consider that presently global Co2 emissions are going up and our culture is to consume in order to fuel our present lifestyles of consumption of good and services in all their forms.

    450 ppmv is still very unrealistic with present legislation and lifestyles. We need WW2 action on CO2 emissions which is so entangled with oru lifestyles that its not easy to see how it will come about. I am sure it can come about but its about how it will and seeing as we operate a cost driven system then presently all forms of power are bweing used to give us what we crave and require.

    fossil fuel usage is not falling nor is there any significant legislation globally to do this or the will yet to do it. Even if the deniers and skeptics keep denying to delay legislation the world is still warming at now decipherable amounts and hence action can only be delayed just so much before it becomes patently obvious it needs to be implemented on a very large global scale. How long is that ?

  8. MapleLeaf says:

    So when do we start investigating the deniers and “skeptics”? Oh right, GMU is still sitting on the Wegman case, more than a year now since the plagiarism was brought o heir attention and nothing, zilch, nada……

  9. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Because of the TOTAL dominance of politics and the media throughout the West by the Right, the denialists can go on spreading lies and disinformation with absolute impunity. Not only do the Dunning-Kruger-Joyce tendency in this country still repeat the imbecility that ‘Climategate’ was a great scandal that exposed ALL climate science as lies and conspiracy, but the top denialists in the MSM, the Murdoch swamp in particular, also continue to dissemble, misinform and flat out lie, with no consequences. It was once a major scandal in politics or the media to be caught out lying, but today it is ubiquitous, inescapable and almost mundane. The basic, the most basic, facts of science have been reduced to matters of ‘opinion’, where the ignorant prejudices of brainwashed dullards, all aflame with ideological certainty and ardour, are accounted equal to those of climate scientists. In fact, in our ‘Through the Looking Glass’ world, the scientists are dismissed as ‘Commos’ or ‘water-melons’, and in any case are, and have always been, despised by the dullards as ‘know-it-alls’ and ‘smart-arses’. Today in Australia there is a fully fledged ‘Idiots’ Crusade’ in full cry, led by the Leader of the Opposition (to Everything) Tony Abbott, and his Holy Mission receives its marching orders and Papal Bull direct from Pope Rupert enthroned in his Vatican, News Ltd, with politicians lining up to kiss his ring.