By way of preamble, let me remind you where I stand on climate change. I think climate science points to a risk that the world needs to take seriously. I think energy policy should be intelligently directed towards mitigating this risk. I am for a carbon tax. I also believe that the Climategate emails revealed, to an extent that surprised even me (and I am not new to this milieu), an ethos of suffocating groupthink and resistance to dissent. The scandal attracted enormous attention in the US, and support for a new energy policy has fallen. In sum, the scientists concerned brought their own discipline into disrepute, and set back the prospects for a better energy policy.
I had hoped, not very confidently, that the various Climategate inquiries would be thorough. This would have been a first step towards restoring confidence in the scientific consensus. But no, the reports make things worse, by failing to take seriously the charges that competent critics were actually making, and by failing to rule on the quality of the science, as opposed to the integrity of the scientists. The climate-science establishment, of which these inquiries have chosen to make themselves a part, seems entirely incapable of understanding, let alone repairing, the harm it has done to its own cause.