The Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia keeps some of the most accurate climate records which are key to many climate change debates. Its email archives were hacked, and now it’s the centre of another conspiracy claim.
As soon as the email archives’ contents were made publicly available, arguments broke out. Was there proof of data manipulation that could flip the entire climate debate topsy-turvy? Were scientists at the university working to keep works by climate skeptics out of journals? Answers to either question are unclear. According to New Scientist, there was no evidence of actual data manipulation, but some of the email exchanges could be construed as attempts to suppress some research.
No matter how those questions wind up being resolved, in the end the trouble doesn’t seem to be in the contents of the emails or in the data, but in the fact that the Climate Research Unit restricted access to the climate data to those it deemed “bona fide researchers.” Maybe some of the accusations the unit faced could’ve been avoided had the data been more freely shared in the first place. [New Scientist]
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