Climategate was a bubble

A review by the U.S. Department of Commerce commissioned by Senator and outspoken climate skeptic Inhofe also found no evidence of data manipulation

One of the leading climate warming deniers in the U.S. is Republican Senator James Inhofe, who also sits on the Environment Committee, where he has been campaigning against climate scientists who believe that the climate is warming due to human activity. For Inhofe, this has simply been the grossest hoax ever for years (Climate warming: Is there a consensus of scientists?; Revolt against Climate Policy and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change).

No wonder that the right-wing senator, who equates environmentalists with Nazis, was delighted with the leak or hack of the emails of climate scientists stored on the server of the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia and, like others, immediately spoke of Climagate, because it allegedly revealed the global conspiracy of climate warming, i.e. that data were manipulated or critics marginalized in order to harm the American economy and/or to promote their own interests. The by "Climategate" allegedly truncated suspicions of a global conspiracy of politicians and scientists may also have contributed to the fact that U.S. President Obama has not yet been able to get a bill to reduce emissions through Congress. 2009 climate bill still stuck in Senate (US Senate overturns climate bill).

In fact, some laxity and misrepresentation was discovered in the course of Climategate, fittingly done just before the UN Climate Summit (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change continues credibility crisis), but no fundamental errors or mistakes suggesting that there is no climate warming and that it cannot be attributed to human activity in the anthropocene. There have been a number of investigations into the data and the conduct of individual scientists, for example by Pennsylvania State University, the National Research Council and the UK House of Commons, which have concluded that there has been no manipulation.

A true conspiracy theorist, of course, cannot be shaken by this, not even Senator Inhofe, at whose request the Inspector General of the Department of Commerce also conducted a review of the emails written by employees of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Inhofe expected to uncover the hoax he alleged, but to review the 289 emails involving NOAA employees and Jane Lubchenco, the director, out of a total of 1.073 revealed no evidence of data manipulation, according to the Inspector General: "We found no evidence that NOAA improperly manipulated data", according to the report.

The same conclusion was reached in the previous investigations as well. Only a few emails required further inquiries, according to the Inspector General’s report. NOAA is being chastised primarily for failing to comply with a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to provide access to CRU emails, even though it is required to do so. NOAA argues that the data asked for was not in the agency’s possession, but belonged to the IPCC. Inspector general charges that agency should have released at least some of the emails discussing the research.

Inhofe does not want to admit defeat with the report, but is of the opinion that NOAA employees had probably violated the Freedom of Information Act after all and manipulated data. He quotes passages from the report at length to support his suspicions without being specific. Climagate has vanished into thin air. But that was not allowed to make climate skeptics like Inhofe rethink their position.