By Dan Gainor
It never rains but it pours. You would think climate experts would know that. Clearly, they don’t. Instead, supposed climate scientists have been caught in a storm of their own making over documents released onto the Web raising huge questions about how global warming “science” has been done.
At issue is an enormous dump of data from the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit that was leaked or hacked and placed online. The data included more than 1,000 e-mails – many of them back-and-forth communications among prominent scientists. The private e-mails showed potentially unethical or illegal behavior and a possible conspiracy to distort science for political gain. That scary list includes plans to avoid freedom of information requests, efforts to delete data and discussions of ways to intimidate the peer review process of scientific publications.
But the broadcast networks haven’t bothered with the story.
Phil Jones, head of the climate unit, stepped aside temporarily for an investigation. Climate scientist Michael Mann, one of the originators of the famous “hockey stick graph,” is being investigated by Penn State as well. Republicans on Capitol Hill are calling for an overall investigation into the scandal.
And the network news media have been hiding in the storm cellar, hoping this one blows over. Only it isn’t going away. It’s now been 13 days since the story hit the news and despite network censors, the Climate-gate scandal is turning up the heat on global warming advocates. What started as a drizzle of stories in The New York Times and Washington Post is growing into an Internet flood that is sweeping along traditional news outlets from CNN to NPR.