New Cache of Emails Leaked In Advance of Durban Climate Talks

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An anonymous source has released a new cache of private emails from some of the world’s leading climate scientists, a leak apparently timed to disrupt international climate talks beginning next week in Durban, South Africa.

While it remains unclear who shared the 5,000 emails — which are available for download on a Russian server — the unauthorized release echoes the online posting of hundreds of similar emails in the days leading up to Copenhagen climate talks in 2009.

Those emails, which purported to show climate scientists attempting to silence dissenting views in the climate debate, were a setback to climate talks; however, a later series of U.S. and UK inquiries into the controversy largely vindicated the scientists.

The emails released this week seem to be from the same period as the emails released in 2009. They include a list of selected excerpts that apparently suggest disagreements between the scientists and efforts to block the release of documents in response to freedom of information requests.

Michael Mann, a Penn State University scientist whose messages are included in the leak, called the release “truly pathetic,” adding, “I guess they had very little left to work with, having culled in the first round the emails that could most easily be taken out of context to try to make me look bad.”

Article appearing courtesy Yale Environment 360.

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Yale Environment 360 is an online magazine offering opinion, analysis, reporting and debate on global environmental issues. We feature original articles by scientists, journalists, environmentalists, academics, policy makers, and business people, as well as multimedia content and a daily digest of major environmental news. Yale Environment 360 is published by the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Yale University. We are funded in part by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. The opinions and views expressed in Yale Environment 360 are those of the authors and not of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies or of Yale University.