Right Hooks

What's NOAA Hiding? Agency Leaves Congress in the Dark

Internal communications remain under wraps.

Jordan Candler · Oct. 29, 2015

First there was ClimateGate, the scandal that broke in 2009 when a hacker exposed extensive data belonging to the UK’s University of East Anglia. That data, which unveiled scandalous email correspondence and a fallacious methodology dubbed the “fudge factor,” revealed a concerted effort by some of the world’s most influential climate scientists to keep evidence of global cooling in a shroud of secrecy. As we noted at the time, it was the biggest scandal to rock the scientific world in quite some time. After all, environmental policy is based on what the measurements depict — that’s the claim, at least — but those measurements were manipulated and exploited by the purveyors of climate alarmism. That malfeasance, however, appears to be just the tip of the iceberg.

Skeptical scientists have long rejected climate hyperbole. One reason is that satellite temperature measurements continue to depict a warming hiatus, which now stands at 18 years 8 months. Faced with growing pressure to address the chatter, a group of warmists tried to quash those claims in a study published in June. According to the authors, NOAA’s own findings “do not support the notion of a ‘slowdown’ in the increase of global surface temperature.” The researchers even rejected the IPCC’s recent conclusion that a slowdown indeed did happen. Fine, so let’s see all the evidence. Oh, wait, we can’t, because the authors would rather keep some of it a secret.

According to the journal Nature, “Representative Lamar Smith, the Texas Republican who leads the House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, asked NOAA in July for the data used in the study and for any internal communications related to it. NOAA has provided the committee with the publicly available data and has briefed committee staff on the research, but the agency has not turned over the communications.” Nor does it plan to. “Although NOAA’s latest response to the committee skirted the issue, the agency suggests in a 27 October statement to Nature that it has no intention of handing over documents that reveal its internal deliberations.” Nothing to see here, right?

Smith contends, “NOAA needs to come clean about why they altered the data to get the results they needed to advance this administration’s extreme climate change agenda.” The Investor’s Business Daily editorial board observed, “What’s strange is that major temperature revisions by NOAA and others in recent years have always been up — never down — a clear sign of possible bias.” The agency can put these allegations to rest with a little transparency. But it won’t, which leads us to just one conclusion: The ClimateGate fraud is bigger and more malicious than anyone realizes.

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