UEA on Climate Hack Sequel: Same Old Same Old

November 22, 2011

Statement from University of East Anglia in regard to newly released emails:

While we have had only a limited opportunity to look at this latest post of 5,000 emails, we have no evidence of a recent breach of our systems. If genuine, (the sheer volume of material makes it impossible to confirm at present that they are all genuine) these emails have the appearance of having been held back after the theft of data and emails in 2009 to be released at a time designed to cause maximum disruption to the imminent international climate talks.

This appears to be a carefully-timed attempt to reignite controversy over the science behind climate change when that science has been vindicated by three separate independent inquiries and number of studies – including, most recently, the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature group.

As in 2009, extracts from emails have been taken completely out of context.  Following the previous release of emails scientists highlighted by the controversy have been vindicated by independent review, and claims that their science cannot or should not be trusted are entirely unsupported. They, the University and the wider research community have stood by the science throughout, and continue to do so.

UPDATE – new summaries of tired old tactic:
Media Matters
Climate Progress 
Washington Post
Desmogblog
Best quote attributed to a climategate-jaded journalist comes via Gavin Schmidt:

“Even my “climategate” obsessed editors are cool on this. Lets hope it doesn’t become thanksgiving tradition…if they really do have 220 thousand more we could be eating the leftovers for another 80 years at this rate”

 Guardian:

The unauthorised publication is an apparent attempt to repeat the impact of a similar release of emails on the eve of theCopenhagen climate summit in late 2009.

The initial email dump was apparently timed to disrupt the Copenhagen climate talks. It prompted three official inquiries in the UK and two in the US into the working practices of climate scientists. Although these were critical of the scientists’ handling of Freedom of Information Act requests and lack of openness they did not find fault with the climate change science they had produced.
Norfolk police have said the new set of emails is “of interest” to their investigation to find the perpetrator of the initial email release who has not yet been identified.  
Where’s Sherlock Holmes when you need him?
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19 Responses to “UEA on Climate Hack Sequel: Same Old Same Old”

  1. Martin_Lack Says:

    I cannot believe this. What unbelievable cheek these criminals hackers have. I do hope that they will be caught this time.

    Peter – To avoid litigation eminating from the United Arab Emirates – you may wish to edit the title of this post.

  2. Martin_Lack Says:

    Having looked at Wattsupwiththat, it is clear Anthony Watts was taken by surprise by this new release (of old data); or at least that is how he wants it to look. :-) Seriously though, the Guardian newspaper has much more detail – which includes detail on the potential geographical location and openly-declared motives of the hackers. The police in Norfolk (East Anglia, UK) are – not surprisingly – very interested in the repeat offence.

    I think this story is going to run and run but, clearly, we must hope that this stunt will backfire on those that want to de-rail COP17 in Durban. However, the ironic aspect to all of this is that 19 years of UNFCCC talks about emission reductions have achieved absolutely nothing; and nothing will be achieved next week either… As James Hansen says, much more radical action is required but will not happen until the fossil fuel lobby influence on politicians around the world can be terminated.

    Therefore, this new release of data is pointless but we can but hope that it will indeed backfire on those whose motives are now out in the open…

    • BlueRock Says:

      > Having looked at Wattsupwiththat, it is clear Anthony Watts was taken by surprise by this…

      You *still* believe anything Watts says?! “You can fool some of the people all of the time….”

      > I think this story is going to run and run…

      Only in the wingnut press, confirming to deniers what the deniers have always believed and always will believe.

      The original release had no effect on Copenhagen. This will have even less effect on Durban.

      • Martin_Lack Says:

        I agree that this stunt had little effect on the UNFCCC process (which has been entirely ineffectual anyway). The problem is that it undermined public confidence in – and/or respect for – climate science and scientists; and it would appear – almost unbelievably – that large parts of the media are falling for it second-time-around; so it is likely to do so again (within the minds of those incapable of independent thought)…

        With regard to Anthony Watts, it is clear that, although his is one of 4 websites chosen by the hackers to spread their stupid non-story, he is just a puppet in a much wider game: He has been duped like all the rest of the so-called “sceptics“…

        • BlueRock Says:

          No, the stolen CRU emails had little effect on “public confidence”. You’ve fallen for the denier narrative again.

          * Experts Debunk Polls that Claim Sharp Drop in Number of Americans Who Believe in Global Warming. http://thinkprogress.org/romm/2011/11/15/360335/experts-debunk-polls-americans-believe-in-global-warming/

          * http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/01/12/did-public-opinion-changed-after-climategate/

          You think Watts’ behaviour is due to him being “duped”? Are you new to this ‘debate’?!

          Watts is mendacious. He sets out to dupe others and feeds off the attention and adulation his disinformation brings. The fact that there are deniers further up the food chain does not mean Watts is not very conscious of what he is doing.

          You seem to be as misinformed on this as you are on energy….

          • Martin_Lack Says:

            Have you considered anger management therapy?

          • BlueRock Says:

            At least you’re consistent in how you respond to evidence and arguments that prove you wrong. ;)

          • Martin_Lack Says:

            I am about as wrong as you are mature ;-)

          • BlueRock Says:

            I’m happy to be judged on the evidence I provided and for you to be judged on your little tantrum that was delivered in response. :)

          • Martin_Lack Says:

            You are a very tiresome irritating person who seems to have a pathological need to argue with everybody just in order to make yourself feel more intelligent. Whereas, the only people I want to argue with are those that stand in the way of decisive action being taken that might yet avert climate catastrophe.

          • BlueRock Says:

            I appreciate that you’re upset, but you need to respond to evidence in order to have a grown-up debate – otherwise you will remain as confused as you are on nukes, radiation, etc.

          • Martin_Lack Says:

            I’m not upset, I am disappointed in you; and bored. What does attacking me achieve (other than making you feel better)?

            I have had a look at the climateprogress article and I would accept that Boykoff makes a good attempt at minimising the impact of the original Climategate stunt. Irrespective of its affect on the public perception of the reality, scale and urgency of the problem we face, however, I think it is pointless trying to deny that the stunt had a withering effect upon the collective political will to tackle the problem: Politicians need a mandate to act and they were never going to take decisive action with such a controversy raging around whether or not climate scientists were deceiving us. Thus 2 more crucial years have been wasted.

            So, I ask you again, what is the point in you arguing with me over such matters? Agree to disagree over nuclear energy if necessary. Move on and grow-up (definitely necessary). But, most of all, know your enemy (i.e. not me). Your enemy is – or should be – the fossil fuel lobby that are exercising mind control over our politicians.

          • BlueRock Says:

            What you perceive as people “attacking” you is actually evidence and arguments showing that your beliefs are wrong – which you don’t respond to other than with pathetic, juvenile retorts. You’re a bit like an evangelical Xian who perceives any science that conflicts with their beliefs as being a personal attack.

            I don’t really care who is talking drivel or what they claim their motives to be, I’m interested in ACC mitigation – which nuke cultists like you stand in the way of. Why do you think the Kochs support nukes but relentlessly attack renewables? Think about it.

            Take your own advice: grow up and respond to evidence and arguments. Don’t throw a tantrum because your beliefs are shown to be false.

          • Martin_Lack Says:

            Blue rock – I REPEAT – I am not your enemy: What the F*CK is your problem?

            If you would bother to read what I have posted on my blog this week, you would see that I am no more dogmatically pro-nuclear than I am pro-fossil fuels. This is like being in the Monty Python “Is this the right room for an argument” sketch. I don’t care what you say next, this debate is pointless and is now over.

          • BlueRock Says:

            Instead of expending paragraphs on pompous sanctimony, you’d achieve far more by responding to the evidence and arguments presented to you that refute your beliefs.

            P.S. I skimmed your latest ramble – “What’s wrong with Renewables?” – in which you assert that we will need to get “most of our energy from nuclear fission (i.e. Fast Breeder Reactors)” which is a failed technology and “nuclear fusion”. Keep dreaming the dream!

            * IEA Global Electricity Statistics, August 2011: nuclear down 10%, combustible fuels down 3%, renewables up 24%. http://www.iea.org/stats/surveys/mes.pdf


  3. The thing people should be asking is: why now?

    It’s been two years since the original release, not a single peep from them in those two years. Yet they choose this moment to publish these emails. Which is yet again before important climate talks.

    So it is obvious this was timed to be released now. With the goal to delay efforts to actually do something about our contributions to climate change. It’s not to show actual fraud or misconduct, something that has already been shown not to be the case. And considering these emails come from the same batch that was originally acquired from the universities servers, it’s unlikely these emails will contain anything new and shocking.

    So the most important question we should ask is: who would be behind such an effort?

    I also wrote a more comprehensive “two cents” on this whole thing: http://www.realsceptic.com/2011/11/22/climategate-2-0-not-really/

  4. hengistmcstone Says:

    A question I’ve asked on a “skeptic” blog is ‘could somebody please tell me what these emails have got to do with me ?’ I’ve gone on to argue that the emails have fallen into our hands by foul means thus how we deal with them says a great deal about our judgment.

    I’m afraid our advocates positioned as skeptic friends haven’t quite latched on to my point yet. This whole thing kind of has the feel of a sequel too far , or one of Liz Taylor’s later weddings (for those of us who can remember that far back) ;-)


  5. [...] egg off its face for the embarrassing performance last time around, is taking a much more measured, even bored, approach with this new scam. “Climategate” has become the “WMD” of the [...]


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