M A I N   N E W S

IPCC studies robust, says Pachauri
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 2
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) chairman R K Pachauri has dismissed as “unfounded and baseless” allegations that findings of the Nobel prize-winning UN body on disappearing ice from the world's mountain peaks were based on a doctoral student's essay.

“The claims that ice melting from the world's mountain peaks was based on a student's essay are totally unfounded and baseless and I maintain that the IPCC monitoring systems are robust and solid,” said Pachauri, who has lately been in the line of fire for “faults” in the IPCC report.

A question mark has appeared on the credibility of the IPCC for quoting a report that Himalayan glaciers will melt by 2035 from a science magazine without peer-reviewing it. “Yes, there was only this error which we accepted and corrected as well when it was brought to our notice. I still maintain that the IPCC monitoring systems are still robust and solid," Pachauri had later said, admitting and regretting the fault However on allegations over scientific errors regarding Amazon forests and disappearing of ice in world's mountain peaks, he says that “the IPCC is correct on its claim on both issues.”

British newspapers questioned the IPCC's decision to cite a WWF report to support its claim that 40 per cent of the Amazon forests could disappear due to declining rainfall and even be replaced by tropical savannah. The newspaper also accused the IPCC of citing a magazine article by Mark Bowen and, another, a dissertation written by a professional mountain guide and climate change campaigner Dario-Andri Schworer.However, scientific faults in the IPCC report are not the only allegations that Pachauri is currently facing. Questions have also been raised about his lifestyle, “million dollar suits” and preference for fuel-guzzling SUVs. Allegations are also there that he was enjoying profits as the IPCC chairman as well in holding the post of director general of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI).

Pachauri has termed all these allegations a "pack of lies". He recently told a media conference that “every single payment that I receive goes to TERI. The extra money that my organisation generates goes into the 'Lighting a Billion Lights' campaign that TERI has launched. These allegations are nothing but a pack of lies”.

Meanwhile, the Sunita Narian-led Centre for Science and Environment has reacted to the IPCC’s Himalayan blunder.

Associate director of the CSE Chandra Bhushan said: “It is important to recognise that it was a silly mistake on the part of the authors of the IPCC report (those who wrote and reviewed Chapter 10 of the Working Group II: Impacts, adaptation and vulnerabilities) to pick up a non-peer reviewed paper and quote it as a definitive finding. Silly still, they quoted a definitive year - 2035 - for the vanishing of the entire Himalayan glaciers.”

“Considering that the science of climate change is still evolving (that is why the IPCC publishes its reports every six years), giving a definitive year was a blunder. Having said that, it is important to recognise that this faux-pas of the IPCC doesn’t in any way take away the fact that Himalayan glaciers are indeed receding,” he added.



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