Watching politics eat away at climate science
Two stories today today illustrate how the field of climate science is being destroyed by politics.
- UN IPCC climate head Rajendra Pachauri resigns amid sexual harassment allegations
- Smithsonian asks legal watchdog to investigate climate skeptic’s disclosure practices
In the first, a leading climate skeptic chortles over the resignation of Rajendra Pachauri, the man who has headed the IPCC since 2002, who has stepped down because of allegations of sexual harassment by an employee at the institute he heads in New Delhi. In the second, Willie Wei-Hock Soon, a scientist who has published numerous peer-reviewed papers raising questions about global warming science, is attacked for not fully disclosing the sources of his income.
In both cases, the two sides in the global warming debate are using these allegations as ammunition to attack the believability of each side’s stance on the scientific question of global warming. And in both cases, the stories raise literally no questions about the science itself that each man advocated.
I admit that I have attacked Pachauri numerous times in the past, but each time it was because he demonstrated outright ignorance of the field of climate science or had been caught making significant scientific errors. His resignation here however has nothing to do with the science published in IPCC reports, and should not be used as fodder to criticize the theory of human-caused global warming.
Similarly, none of the articles in the mainstream science press about the allegations against Soon have raised a single question about his actual results. All they have done is attack him for not revealing all of his funding sources. His research itself still appears valid. That the largest science journals, Science and Nature, have published articles attacking Soon, with the Smithsonian now piling on as well, without presenting any evidence that he had falsified any of his work, illustrates how corrupt this field has become. The science for these major science journals no longer matters. All that matters is destroying someone who was apparently successful in bursting the balloon on some global warming science.
Until everyone stops playing this game and focuses instead on the data itself and what that data is really telling us, we will get no closer to truly understanding the climate of the Earth. And tragically, I see far too little effort in the climate field to do this.