The credibility of the IPCC, the reputation and the job security of its chairman, the consensus among key (and rather skeptical) countries that global warming is man made and needs to be fixed: it’s all melting away, to judge from the latest news from New Delhi. The only thing that isn’t melting is the Himalayan icepack, parts of which, a British scientist points out, may actually be growing.
IPCC chairman Rajendra Pachauri is gamely defending his job in the midst of a growing global press firestorm, arguing that the late, reluctant of admission by the IPCC that its Nobel prize-winning report on climate change contained significant errors has somehow increased the panel’s credibility. But while Parchauri fights his critics, movement toward a global agreement to stop climate change is collapsing. According to The Financial Times, a senior Chinese official has said that China wants to keep an open mind about the causes of global warming. The FT reports that following a meeting with representatives of the other ‘BASIC’ countries (Brazil, South Africa, India, China) to follow up on the international climate conference in Copenhagen, China’s Xie Zhenhua told a press conference in New Delhi that “There is a view that climate change is caused by cyclical trends in nature itself… We have to keep an open attitude.”