The reputation of the IPCC is melting away faster than a Himalayan glacier. The repercussions rumble on after the discovery that the claim that the Himalayan glaciers would disappear by 2035 was pure speculation backed by zero science.
In an interview with The Mail on Sunday, Dr Lal, the co-ordinating lead author of the report’s chapter on Asia, said: "It related to several countries in this region and their water sources. We thought that if we can highlight it, it will impact policy-makers and politicians and encourage them to take some concrete action. [...] It had importance for the region, so we thought we should put it in."
In other words, this was a political statement masquerading as science. Dr Lal then tries to spread the blame thinly by saying that none of the 500 external reviewers picked up on this bogus claim at the time. This too, appears to be very far from the truth.
Professor Georg Kaser, a glacier expert from Austria, who was lead author of a different chapter in the IPCC report, said when he became aware of the 2035 claim a few months before the report was published, he wrote to Dr Lal, urging him to withdraw it as patently untrue. Dr Lal claimed he never received this letter.
Having been forced to apologise over the 2035 claim, Dr Raj Pachauri, the IPCC chairman, blamed Dr Lal, saying his team had failed to apply IPCC procedures. The mud-slinging has started and everyone is running for cover.
The UN report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) won a Nobel Prize - but it wasn't for Literature. Good to see that science has not yet been totally destroyed and become a mere tool to fool the world. The bad news is that nobody has been sacked, and nobody will be as at heart they are political not scientific appointments.
The Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), a new body founded by former British Chancellor Nigel Lawson is also entering the fray. Benny Peiser, the GWPF’s director, said the affair suggested the IPCC review process was ‘skewed by a bias towards alarmist assessments’. More on that coming soon.