Talk about a breath of fresh air! After reading Judith Curry’s post at Climate Audit on the need for more transparency with regard to climate data, I feel like a refreshing, balmy breeze is blowing over me and my laptop. I urge you all to read it, because it is without question one of the most important things that have been written about this unfortunate episode so far. You can find it here (but beware that Climate Audit’s servers appear to be swamped, so it may take you awhile to get in).
Curry speaks with authority: She is chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology. And she has been doing climate research for many years. In her post at Climate Audit, she identifies a problem she calls “climate tribalism” — the tendency, sparked by politically motivated assaults on climate scientists, to “circle the wagons and point the guns outward in an attempt to discredit misinformation from politicized advocacy groups.”
Here’s the heart of her post:
. . . it is difficult to understand the continued circling of the wagons by some climate researchers with guns pointed at skeptical researchers by apparently trying to withhold data and other information of relevance to published research, thwart the peer review process, and keep papers out of assessment reports. Scientists are of course human, and short-term emotional responses to attacks and adversity are to be expected, but I am particularly concerned by this apparent systematic and continuing behavior from scientists that hold editorial positions, serve on important boards and committees and participate in the major assessment reports. It is these issues revealed in the HADCRU emails that concern me the most, and it seems difficult to spin many of the emails related to FOIA, peer review, and the assessment process. I sincerely hope that these emails do not in actuality reflect what they appear to, and I encourage Gavin Schmidt et al. to continue explaining the individual emails and the broader issues of concern.
I would also urge readers to see what Schmidt and his colleagues are saying at RealClimate.