The embattled chairman of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Rajendra Pachauri, is refusing to relinquish a post he no longer has any business holding. Pachauri was told on multiple occasions late last year by a science reporter that the IPCC’s prior claim of total Himalayan glacier disappearance by 2035 had been refuted. But Pachauri refused to amend a 2007 IPCC report to say so because the Copenhagen climate change conference was right around the corner—and he didn’t want his agency looking foolish. Pachauri reportedly said the matter would have to wait until the next report was issued in 2013 or 2014, a negligible four or five years.
But now that even Pachauri’s former ally John Sauven, director of Greenpeace UK, is calling for his resignation, the chances that the data denier will be able to cling to his title are looking slim. Perhaps in a last-ditch attempt at regaining credibility, Pachauri engaged in a little conspiracy theorizing last weekend. He told Indian television the puppeteers behind the personal “attacks” on him were probably companies facing narrower profit margins as the result of climate change action that had been advised by the IPCC.
“My credibility has been established because I was re-elected chairman in 2008 by all the countries of the world,” Pachauri maintained.
Maybe, Mr. Pachauri—but that was 2008. You botched things up in 2009, and we hope you leave the ICPP in 2010.