The “Climategate” Conspiracy Theories

December 14, 2009

The global conspiracy to cover up the “real” scientific evidence about climate change has reached a fever pitch. First it was the climate scientists whose e-mails were hacked a few weeks ago. Now the alleged co-conspirators include the Associated Press. An exhaustive investigation into the e-mails was conducted by the AP, and their findings were released recently:

"E-mails stolen from climate scientists show they stonewalled skeptics and discussed hiding data-- but the messages don't support claims that the science of global warming was faked, according to an exhaustive review by The Associated Press. The 1,073 e-mails examined by the AP show that scientists harbored private doubts, however slight and fleeting, even as they told the world they were certain about climate change. However, the exchanges don't undercut the vast body of evidence showing the world is warming because of man-made greenhouse gas emissions...."

Apparently uncomfortable with the idea that an independent journalistic investigation might actually fail to find evidence of falsified data, one prominent climate “controversy” blog ( ) claims that one of the coauthors of the AP report (Seth Borenstein) has a conflict of interest because he was one of many reporters who corresponded with the East Anglia scientists.

The accusation is nothing less than bizarre. The fact is that the source material, the notorious hacked e-mails, are there for all to see. It makes perfect sense that an AP science reporter who is familiar with the subject of climate change would be one of the several journalists assigned to analyze hacked e-mails about climate change. This is not a “conflict of interest,” this is called good journalism.

Even if one of the AP reporters was somehow biased, anyone and everyone can look for themselves to see if the AP investigation’s conclusions are valid or not. If one of the world's largest and most respected news organizations is actually part of a huge global conspiracy, that story is itself far more interesting and significant than the original hacked e-mails between climate scientists.

Of course, that's the great thing about conspiracy theories: they are unscientific and illogical because they can't be disproven. All evidence is suspect, and any evidence that refutes the conspiracy believer’s claims is of course part of the conspiracy.