Indian officials say that their nation "cannot rely" on the UN's biased climate research. They have formed an independent research panel that will monitor the health of Himalayan glaciers and conduct climate studies.  (Source: NASA)
Indian climate panel looks to offer independent insight

India, the world's second most populous nation and an emerging research powerhouse, announced last week that it was establishing its own independent climate panel to investigate climate change.  Indian government officials said that they "cannot rely" on the the United Nation's International Panel on Climate Change in light of recent errors.

India's Environment Minister, Jairam Ramesh, announced the new panel on Wednesday evening.  The new panel will be named the National Institute of Himalayan Glaciology.  Its chief goal will be to monitor the health of the world’s "third ice cap", and form an "Indian IPCC" to use "climate science" to offer analysis more solidly founded in unbiased observation.

Describes Mr. Ramesh, "There is a fine line between climate science and climate evangelism. I am for climate science. I think people misused [the] IPCC report, [the] IPCC doesn’t do the original research which is one of the weaknesses… they just take published literature and then they derive assessments, so we had goof-ups on Amazon forest, glaciers, snow peaks."

He continues, "I respect the IPCC but India is a very large country and cannot depend only on [the] IPCC and so we have launched the Indian Network on Comprehensive Climate Change Assessment (INCCA)."

The move marks a major snub for the IPCC and its Indian chief, Rajendra Pachauri.  As is alluded to in Mr. Ramesh's remarks, over the last month Mr. Pachauri has been under fire for a retracted study that claimed the Himalayan Glaciers would melt by 2035.  

Mr. Pachauri, who holds a doctorate in economics but no formal climate training, has been a controversial figure, suggesting that people worldwide give up luxuries such as meat to fight climate change despite reportedly living an affluent lifestyle personally.  Nonetheless, Mr. Pachauri does have powerful supporters -- as evidenced by the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, which he received along with fellow amateur researcher Al Gore.

Mr. Ramesh was critical of Mr. Pachauri's recently retracted report, stating that it "was clearly out of place and didn’t have any scientific basis."  

The new National Institute of Himalayan Glaciology will be based in Dehradun, Uttarakhand and will publish its first climate survey in November.  The survey will track glaciers in India, Pakistan, Nepal and Bhutan.

More scientific analysis on as significant a topic as understanding our planet is certainly a great idea and India's desire to avoid reliance on biased climate research sources is commendable.  One can only hope that they thoroughly examine past historical and geological evidence, which heavily points to cyclic climate changes independent of human influence.  Recent studies have shown that the Earth may balance out what minimal atmospheric effects humans have, leaving solar activity as the primary driving factor of any changes in our planet's climate.

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