The Copenhagen Climate conference opened Monday, but leaders and organizers can’t quite shake the email scandal that erupted last week when leaked emails from East Anglia University allegedly show scientists manipulating data on climate change.
Danish Environment Minister, Connie Hedgeaard, said the leaks are just one aspect being used by skeptics. “No matter how we turn and toss it, if we have to become nine billion people on planet earth by the middle of this century, then we better start to find more intelligent ways of creating our growth. And I think that even skeptics must acknowledge that that is tremendous challenge,” she said at a press conference with United Nations representative to the conference, Yvo de Boer.
The conference, which looks to bring together world leaders to discuss all aspects of climate change, has been hit hard by the East Anglia scandal. The idea that scientists went into hard data and changed it in order to make global warming look more destructive, has led many to say scientists and environmentalists have been misleading the world for years.
Shortly after the announcement of the leaked emails, de Boer and the U.N. announced an investigation into the scandal, and environmental experts say the emails should be looked at very closely.
“I think the UN has to take this seriously, especially since the Saudi Arabians are actually seizing upon the “climategate” scandal to question the entire climate change paradigm,” said Ken Green from the American Enterprise Institute in an interview with Fox News.
But other experts say this should be used as an opportunity to step back and look at the big picture and that scientists often have different opinions. “Of course there’s always uncertainty, but as I say, on this issue, less uncertainty than on many other issues we’ve dealt with scientifically,” Ned Helme of the Center for Clean Air Policy told Fox.
The UN is not the only organization looking into the leaked emails, separate investigations have also been launched by East Anglia University as well as a police investigation.