Friday, March 05, 2010

IOP Statement Authors Still Anonymous

So where we left this story was: the U.K.'s Institute of Physics wrote an extremely critical statement in regards to the University of East Anglia's handling of FOI requests from climate change sceptics, and submitted it to the U.K. Science and Technology Committee, who have been investigating various issues behind the CRU hack. Later they issued a "clarification" of the statement designed to make it sound a little less nutty. But when asked who the actual authors of the original piece were, the IOP clammed up, other than to say they were part of the IOP's energy sub-group...whose members they refused to identify!

As W. Connolley wrote, what had mostly likely happened was that the energy sub-group was "hijacked" by deniers, who then composed their statement and managed to steer it through the larger administrative structure of the IOP and land it on the desk of the committee.

And then it was was discovered by me (I think), here on this blog, that the identity of one of the sub-group's members was one Peter Gill, who had more than a sniff of denialism about him.

Cue the U.K. Gaurdian's David Adam: yeah, it turns out Peter Gill is a Warmocaust Collusionist and, yeah, he was "involved" in the preparation of the IOP document, but the IOP won't get more specific, and still won't say who the other sub-group members are. Their reasoning is, to put it mildly, bizarre:

The institute supplied a statement from an anonymous member of its science board, which said: "The institute should feel relaxed about the process by which it generated what is, anyway, a statement of the obvious." It added: "The points [the submission] makes are ones which we continue to support, that science should be practised openly and in an unbiased way. However much we sympathise with the way in which CRU researchers have been confronted with hostile requests for information, we believe the case for openness remains just as strong."

...which is to say that the the IOP feels comfortable issuing anonymous demands for scientific openness.

More coverage here.


The Mound of Sound said...

It's curious that, having been caught with denialist Gill penning the IOP's diatribe, the Institute insists on 'preserving the anonymity' of the other contributors. Gill considers the global warming movement a 'religion' but then again what energy industry consultant wouldn't? Love to know how much Britain's energy industry funnels into the IoP via Gill.

dizzy said...

From your "More coverage here" --

Evan Harris, a member of the science and technology select committee, said: "Members of the Institute of Physics : may be concerned that the IOP is not as transparent as those it wishes to criticise."