Inhofe Calls for EPA Probe of Scientists' Climate Change E-Mails

The Senate's top global warming skeptic on Tuesday said he will ask the Environmental Protection Agency's inspector general to probe the use of climate change data now at the center of an international inquiry for an endangerment finding that gives the EPA authority to regulate greenhouse gases.

Sen James Inhofe, R-Okla., said EPA administrator Lisa Jackson's decision to rely on information from the U.N.'s International Panel on Climate Change to institute the endangerment finding is

"The EPA accepted the IPCC's erroneous claims wholesale, without doing its own independent review," Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., said about

"So EPA's endangerment finding rests on bad science," Inhofe said at a Tuesday morning hearing.

But appearing before Inhofe at the Senate Environment and Public Works hearing on the EPA's proposed 2011 budget, Jackson said the information under question "doesn't undermine our endangerment finding."

She also rebuffed Inhofe's call to ask the agency's inspector general to investigate the data, saying the Supreme Court ruled that greenhouse gasses are pollutants.

"They said the EPA must make a determination on whether or not greenhouse gases endanger welfare. Rather than ignore that obligation, I believe I had no choice but to follow the law of the land.

In a letter to Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., sent Monday Jackson wrote that new greenhouse gas emission rules for "large stationary sources" will be delayed a year.

Inhofe is also considering a request to the Department of Justice for a probe of scientists who he claims deliberately falsified data used by climate change advocates.

House Environment and Public Works Committee Republicans released a 40-page report that was used by GOPers to ask Jackson how she can continue to advocate for new global warming regulations even as the findings by the IPCC and the work of the East Anglia Climate Research Unit in Britain create doubt about climate science.

"The CRU controversy features e-mails from the world's leading climate scientists -- e-mails that show disturbing practices contrary to the practice of objective science and potentially federal law," the report reads.

"The released CRU e-mails and documents display potentially unethical, and illegal, behavior," it continues. "Moreover, there are e-mails discussing unjustified changes to data by federal employees and federal grantees. These and other issues raise questions about the lawful use of federal funds and potential ethical misconduct."

Inhofe, whose family mocked Al Gore by building a snowman of the climate change advocate on the Capitol grounds earlier this month, said in a statement ahead of the hearing on the EPA's 2011 proposed budget that the minority staff's report covers e-mails and documents from 1996 through November 2009.

He said the research shows the world's leading climate scientists discussing obstruction of contrary data, manipulation of data, threats of journalists who questioned "consensus" on the data and activism to influence the political process.

"We knew they were cooking the science to support the flawed UN IPCC agenda," he said. "I suspect Climate-gate is only the beginning."

At the hearing, Inhofe also pressed Jackson to explain how her agency can press ahead with what he calls a "jobs-killing agenda" when Congress has not passed cap-and-trade legislation.

"How in the world can we justify doing something administratively that the Congress overwhelming rejected, saying defiantly we don't care what you do, Congress?"