10 February 2010
I have been up to my ears in Climategate. Last week the Guardian published extended extracts from my 28,000-word dossier examining the content and the context of the notorious leaked/hacked emails from the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit. Now the full text is online, and open for comments. Read it here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/hacked-climate-science-emails
It begins like this:
"This story is dark; there are no heroes. Environmentalists will be distressed at what happens in the labs; many may think we should not publish for fear of wrecking the already battered cause of fighting climate change. But some of it, according to the British government's Information Commissioner, may have been illegal.
Remember two other things. First, this was war. The scientists were under intense and prolonged attack, they believed, from politically and commercially motivated people who wanted to prevent them from doing their science and trash their work. And they had, as their most vocal protagonist Professor Michael Mann puts it in one email, "dirty laundry one doesn't want to fall into the hands of those who might potentially try to distort things ..."
Meanwhile, their attackers came to believe that the scientists were fraudsters. In many ways, what follows is a Shakespearean tragedy of misunderstood motives.