- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A British investigative panel has largely exonerated a group of scientists accused of fudging data and belittling critics in a series of private e-mails that critics say called into question research backing the case for man-made global warming.

In what has been dubbed the “Climategate” scandal, the review led by Muir Russell, a top British civil servant, concluded there was little reason to question the research and findings of the scientists whose e-mails had been leaked and posted on the Internet.

As a result of the report, climatologist Phil Jones was immediately reinstated and given a comparable post at his former employer, the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia.

“On the specific allegation made against the behavior of C.R.U scientists, we find that their rigor and honesty as scientists are not in doubt,” the review said.

The East Anglia unit is considered one of the leading academic centers on climate change, and many of its findings have been cited in the United Nations scientific survey that has concluded global warming was real and that human actions were in part to blame.

The report, which was commissioned by the university after the Climategate scandal broke, did criticize researchers at East Anglia for failing to show the “proper degree of openness” to critics and skeptics of global warming studies.