Pennsylvania State University today issued its final report thoroughly exonerating climate scientist Dr. Michael Mann of any wrongdoing in the wake of the “Climategate” myth that emerged late last year when thousands of emails and documents were stolen from a computer server at the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia in the UK.
In the days following the posting of the stolen material onto the Internet, right-wing bloggers and media outlets loudly issued allegations of misconduct among climate scientists mentioned in the giant trove of emails. Conspiracy theorists on the right cherry-picked flagrantly out-of-context portions of the email collection in order to gin up a grand tale suggesting that man-made climate change is a fraud concocted by all of the world’s leading climate scientists, the much-despised United Nations IPCC, and, of course, Al Gore.
Despite their success in elevating this nontroversy to the national level via Fox News and other right wing media, every single independent investigation of the climate scientists involved has since cleared them of any misconduct and verified the science underpinning the IPCC’s consensus position that manmade climate change is real.
In February, Penn State officials concluded the first round of inquiry into Professor Mann’s conduct, finding no evidence to support the accusations against him.
That did not stop the right-wing attacks on Professor Mann or Penn State, with some notorious climate skeptics attempting to spin the exoneration as a whitewash. (True to form, skeptics repeated the ridiculous 'whitewash' allegations again today upon hearing of the final report clearing Mann.) …