Climate scientist calls for abolishing UN climate bureaucracy

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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Has the United Nation’s climate bureaucracy become too political to function? At least one climate scientists thinks so, and argues that the institution should be shut down for good.

Climatologist Dr. Judith Curry is calling for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to be shut down with all due haste as governments and scientists have invested too much time, money and credibility for the institution to be anything but a hindrance to scientific progress.

“The IPCC needs to get out of the way so that scientists and policy makers can better do their jobs,” Curry writes in her blog. “We need to put down the IPCC as soon as possible.”

“After several decades and expenditures in the bazillions, the IPCC still has not provided a convincing argument for how much warming in the 20th century has been caused by humans,” Curry added. “The politically charged rhetoric has contaminated academic climate research and the institutions that support climate research, so that individuals and institutions have become advocates; scientists with a perspective that is not consistent with the consensus are at best marginalized … or at worst ostracized by labels of ‘denier’ or ‘heretic.'”

Curry is a professor and chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

The issue of global warming was oversimplified, according to Curry, by alarmists during the 1990s who said that there was only one answer to the problem — radically reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“The vast amount of scientific and political capital invested in the IPCC has become self-reinforcing, so it is not clear how [to] move past this paralysis as long as the IPCC remains in existence,” Curry said.

The science and the policies behind tackling global warming aren’t making much progress. Australia and Germany have been forced to reconsider their greenhouse gas reduction efforts in the face of intense political opposition.

“In any event, there is a growing realization of that neither the science or policy efforts are making much progress, and particularly in view of the failure climate models to predict the stagnation in warming, and that perhaps it is time to step back and see if we can do a better job of understanding and predicting climate variability and change and reducing societal and ecosystem vulnerabilities,” she said.

The IPCC recently released its latest assessment of global warming and says it is 95 percent sure that human activities that put greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere are the main drivers behind global warming.

One of the major controversies in the report was how the U.N.’s climate arm would address the 15 year hiatus in global warming. The Obama administration and some European governments urged U.N. scientists to downplay the data showing no warming so it couldn’t be used by global warming skeptics to derail international climate negotiations in 2015.

The IPCC whitewashed the data, saying that short-term records “are very sensitive to the beginning and end dates and do not in general reflect long-term climate trends.”

“As temperatures have declined and climate models have failed to predict this decline, the IPCC has gained confidence in catastrophic warming and dismisses the pause as unpredictable climate variability,” Curry said.

Curry said that ignoring such important data has harmed the IPCC’s credibility as “substantial criticisms are already being made of the [climate report] as well as of the IPCC process itself.”

She added that UN climate scientists are “bemoaning their loss of their scientific and political influence” and that the mainstream media has paid little attention to the U.N.’s latest climate report.

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