International Review Panel Releases Recommended Reforms to UN Climate Change Body

[img_assist|nid=190798|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=300|height=225]August 30 – The international review panel tasked with reviewing the UN climate change body, the IPCC, announced on Monday its suggested reforms in response to the so-called “Climategate” scandal.

The InterAcademy Council, comprised of 15 leading science academies, carried out the review of the IPCC after it was discovered that the IPCC’s 2007 conclusions regarding the rate of melt in the Himalayan glaciers was sourced to a single magazine article. The IPCC had originally warned that the Himalayan glaciers could melt by 2035.

While the review panel concluded that the IPCC has been “successful overall,” it called for the replacement of current IPCC head Rajendra Pachauri,  stricter rules on the use of sources, and a systemic check on conflicts of interest.

In response to the report, Pachauri responded that he would allow the conference of member-states to decide his fate. The 194 country IPCC is set to hold a general meeting in Busan, South Korea in October.

With climate change legislation stalled in the United States, and weather driven disasters ravaging regions such as Pakistan and Russia, the importance of restoring the IPCC’s credibility was an important goal.

“I think the errors made did dent the credibility of the process — there’s no question about it,” said Harold Shapiro, a former president of Princeton University and head of the review. “Trust is something you have to earn every year. We think what we recommended will help.”

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