UK's Sunday Times Retracts, Apologizes for Smear of IPCC Science

"In 2007, the top United Nations climate body, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, said the Amazon was vulnerable to drought as a result of trends linked to climate change.

The panel backed its conclusion with a report prepared for the W.W.F., an environmental group, demonstrating that around 40 percent of the Amazon rain forest could be sensitive to future changes in rainfall.

That the United Nations climate body cited evidence using environmental activists as a source, rather than independent scientists, added to a storm of criticism among bloggers and in the mainstream media about the credibility of climate science.

The London newspaper The Sunday Times described the authors of the W.W.F. report as 'green campaigners' with 'little scientific expertise' in an article that appeared in January. The article also stated that the authors’ research had been based on a scientific paper that dealt with the effect of human activity rather than with climate change.

This weekend, The Sunday Times published a correction of crucial elements of its article from January.

Ever since the article appeared, scientists involved in Amazon research and in the reporting of that article have sought to correct misunderstandings they said the article had created."

James Kanter reports for the Green blog in the New York Times June 20, 2010.

Monday, June 21, 2010