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‘Climate Change’ Scientists Broke The Law

From the UK’s Times:

Scientists in stolen e-mail scandal hid climate data

Ben Webster, Environment Editor, and Jonathan Leake
January 28, 2010

The university at the centre of the climate change row over stolen e-mails broke the law by refusing to hand over its raw data for public scrutiny.

The University of East Anglia breached the Freedom of Information Act by refusing to comply with requests for data concerning claims by its scientists that man-made emissions were causing global warming.

The Information Commissioner’s Office decided that UEA failed in its duties under the Act but said that it could not prosecute those involved because the complaint was made too late, The Times has learnt. The ICO is now seeking to change the law to allow prosecutions if a complaint is made more than six months after a breach.

The stolen e-mails , revealed on the eve of the Copenhagen summit, showed how the university’s Climatic Research Unit attempted to thwart requests for scientific data and other information, and suggest that senior figures at the university were involved in decisions to refuse the requests. It is not known who stole the e-mails.

Professor Phil Jones, the unit’s director, stood down while an inquiry took place. The ICO’s decision could make it difficult for him to resume his post

In one e-mail, Professor Jones asked a colleague to delete e-mails relating to the 2007 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

He also told a colleague that he had persuaded the university authorities to ignore information requests under the act from people linked to a website run by climate sceptics.

A spokesman for the ICO said: “The legislation prevents us from taking any action but from looking at the emails it’s clear to us a breach has occurred.” Breaches of the act are punishable by an unlimited fine.

The complaint to the ICO was made by David Holland, a retired engineer from Northampton. He had been seeking information to support his theory that the unit broke the IPCC’s rules to discredit sceptic scientists.

In a statement, Graham Smith, Deputy Commissioner at the ICO, said: “The e-mails which are now public reveal that Mr Holland’s requests under the Freedom of Information Act were not dealt with as they should have been under the legislation. Section 77 of the Act makes it an offence for public authorities to act so as to prevent intentionally the disclosure of requested information.”

He added: “The ICO is gathering evidence from this and other time-barred cases to support the case for a change in the law. We will be advising the university about the importance of effective records management and their legal obligations in respect of future requests for information.”

Mr Holland said: “There is an apparent Catch-22 here. The prosecution has to be initiated within six months but you have to exhaust the university’s complaints procedure before the commission will look at your complaint. That process can take longer than six months.”

We suspect that this ‘Catch-22’ here was no accident.

But the whole ‘global warming’ exercise has made us a little cynical.

Still, we thought that the ‘public’s right to know’ was sacrosanct?

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, January 27th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

2 Responses to “‘Climate Change’ Scientists Broke The Law”

  1. proreason says:

    Wait just a minute there.

    Our moral superiors ought to be able to make their own laws, should they not?

    How can only people brilliant enough and dedicated enough to save the planet be criminals?

    To the contrary, they should be lifted up and be sanctified for their selflessness.

    Perhaps they should even be showered with riches and prestige for having the courage to defy mortal law and rational thought to save us from ourselves.

    Like Al Gore.


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