February 11, 2010
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INHOFE ‘CRISIS OF CONFIDENCE' IN THE IPCC
Link to Video of Speech (More Clips Will be Added Shortly)
WASHINGTON, DC - Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, delivered a Senate Floor speech today on several recent media reports uncovering serious errors and possible fraud by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC. Below are highlights of the speech. For the complete speech, click here.
"I rise today to highlight several recent media reports uncovering serious errors and possible fraud by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC. I can already hear the question: just what is the IPCC? Many in this body may not be familiar with it. But I hope the Senate becomes more acquainted with it very soon, if only because of its sheer importance to the debate we're having on global warming and cap-and-trade legislation. For now, you need to know just three things about the IPCC: (1) the Obama Administration calls it "the gold standard" of climate change science; (2) some say its reports on climate change represent the so-called "consensus" of scientific opinion about global warming; and (3) the IPCC and Al Gore were awarded the Nobel Prize in 2007 for "their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change..." Put simply, what this means is that, in elite circles, the IPCC is a big deal. So when ABC News, the Economist, Time Magazine, and the Times of London-among many others-report that the IPCC's research contains embarrassing flaws, and that the IPCC chairman and scientists knew of the flaws, but published them anyway-well, you have the makings of a major scientific scandal.
"So again, here we have the ‘gold standard' of climate research; here we have a body that was awarded the Nobel Prize in 2007. How can the world's preeminent climate body fall victim to such inaccuracy, and, it must be said, outright fraud? I'm sure that, for many in this body, this information is shocking. But for me, I'm not very surprised. Five years ago, I sent a letter to Dr. Pachauri, specifically raising the many weaknesses in the IPCC's peer-review process. But Dr. Pachauri dismissed my concerns. Here's how Reuters reported his response: ‘In the one-page letter, [Pachauri] denies the IPCC has an alarmist bias and says ‘I have a deep commitment to the integrity and objectivity of the IPCC process.' Pachauri's main argument is that the IPCC comprises both scientists and more than 130 governments who approve IPCC reports line by line. That helps ensure fairness, he says.' Given the significance of the reports, Dr. Pachauri should come clean and respond directly to the numerous charges made against himself and the IPCC. And given that Dr. Pachauri's has testified before Congress, including the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, we should hear directly from him as soon as possible as to how he can salvage the IPCC's vanishing credibility...
"How did we get to this point? I've been documenting deceit of this kind for several years now. But I must say that a great turning point occurred just a few months ago, when thousands of emails from the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit, or CRU, were leaked to the media. The CRU is one of the world's most prestigious climate research centers. The emails appear to show some of the world's preeminent climate scientists manipulating data, violating information disclosure laws by deleting emails, and blocking publication of research contrary to their own...
"Mr. President, there is a crisis of confidence in the IPCC. The challenges to the integrity and credibility of the IPCC merit a closer examination by the US Congress. The ramifications of the IPCC spread far and wide, most notably to the Environmental Protection Agency's finding that greenhouse gases from mobile sources endanger public health and welfare. EPA's finding rests in large measure on the IPCC's conclusions-and EPA has accepted them wholesale, without an independent assessment. At this pivotal time, as the Obama EPA is preparing to enact policies potentially costing trillions of dollars and thousands of jobs, the IPCC's errors make plain that we need openness, transparency, and accountability in the scientific research financed by U.S. taxpayers."