Climategate Anniversary

It’s been nearly two years since the “Climategate” scandal, an episode I have analyzed in-depth with Raghu Garud.

On the heels of the controversy, Richard Muller, a Berkeley physicist and self-proclaimed climate skeptic, launched the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature (BEST) project to review for himself the temperature data underpinning climate change concerns. A major sponsor of Muller’s study was the Charles G. Koch Foundation (of California Prop 23 fame).

This week Muller announced the results of his project in an op-ed in a Wall Street Journal article entitled: “The Case Against Global-Warming Skepticism.” The piece is subtitled: “There were good reasons to doubt, until now.” As part of the announcement, Muller’s research group released four papers, which collectively corroborate the climate consensus:

The group estimates that over the past 50 years the land surface warmed by 0.911°C: a mere 2% less than NOAA’s estimate.

Although Muller’s study is one more vindication of the science, it is hardly good news for humanity. Moreover, as Jon Stewart points out, Muller’s study isn’t getting nearly the coverage that Climategate did. Perhaps it’s because when it comes to policy decisions facts are so, well, unnecessary.

For further coverage, see the Economist.