When the Pachauri messages came out, they read like the sex-crazed ravings of a octogenarian. Much of the initial excitement and focus has been on the sleazy aspect. But a 14-page list of electronic- and hand-written messages from the police report, filed following a complaint by the TERI employee who was their recipient, paints a damaging picture.
Pachauri and his lawyers have claimed his computers and phone were ‘hacked’, generating the text messages and emails that are on public display.
At the end, comes an email from the TERI employee, addressing Pachauri:
Dear Dr. Pachauri,
You began passing on my work to others without checking with/informing me and this time simply marked me a copy over email without actually having to tell me in person and or without a reason. … It is leaving me with no other thought but that how my request to sit in economy was received in personal distaste and just how you react to all this. Pretty unfortunate and sadly, very disappointing.
I would have preferred not to respond to your email. But what I will say is that you should reflect on the massive insult you heaped on me by indicating that I was so toxic that you would prefer not to sit next to me on the plane. If that be the case there is no room for any interaction between us. … To me that act of yours represented the ultimate in haughtiness, arrogance and insulting behaviour. …
You are welcome to remain a paid guest of TERI. I really would not burden you with any work in future. […]
About 15 days later, comes the next:
Since I really cannot assign any productive work to you in my office, I am thinking of moving you to your former Division, B and B. However, I will have to discuss that with Dr. Alok Adholeya. […]
The responding email gives the employee’s reluctance to sit next to Pachauri on a flight as direct reason for not assigning further work. This is followed by suggestion of a move to a different division.
According to the Economic Times, Pachauri’s lawyers say the woman filed the harassment complaint ‘only after the [she] was told she might have to move due to her “poor performance”.
These messages are far removed from the ‘Return to Almora’-style outpourings. If true they show a boss ready to damage the career of an underling for not complying with sexual demands. I wonder how, and whether Pachauri’s lawyers will show these emails and messages to be a ‘hacker’s and not his. If they are his they are indefensible – they show the full face of sexual harassment. Time will tell.
Defending the indefensible
One of the rules of climate propaganda is nothing bad ever happens to ‘the cause’. Now that the climate world has lost Pachauri, there is a sudden need to reconcile the blow with the required plastic cheerful front.
Wikipedia’s William Connolley has stepped up with the narrative. Here’s the short version: ‘Pachauri can be safely pushed under the bus’
The Pachauri situation is a problem for the global warming establishment. It can’t go pretending nothing bad happened — an IPCC chair resigned abruptly over revelations that spilled out one fateful weekend. It cannot defend him – that could potentially mean defending sexual harassment. But defending comes naturally especially to climate activists who believe in not ceding an inch of ground.
This is Connolley’s lead:
But [Pachauri] was clearly a creation of Bush1; which needs to be remembered, lest anyone feel themselves trapped or pressured into defending RKP.
That’s right: the guy who was the face of the organization, darling of the green media contingent, Nature magazine’s ‘Newsmaker of the Year 2007‘, two-time head of the IPCC, put back in his post a second time by its members, and ‘Nobel Laureate’ in countless ill-researched gushing editorials and news items, is suddenly a Bush appointee who ‘wasn’t a successful head’ and only a bone thrown to the ‘Third world and India’.
Sorry WC. Would have been more convincing if you had thrown Bush stooge ‘Patchy’ to the wolves, before charges of sexual harassment and criminal intimidation were filed.
“After all, most people spend their lives making decisions under uncertainty, and that’s what dealing effectively with climate change demands – the same kind of decisions you make when you decide to buckle your seatbelt…”
-Chris Field, IPCC Working Group II Co-Chair, speaking to reporters at Busan
Evidently, such advice does not apply to the IPCC itself.
Richard Black, BBC, thinks that ” Rajendra Pachauri will be here to usher” the AR5 in,” barring some major mishap”. In the rough-and-tumble world of climate change polity, the events of the last one year are not major mishaps then.
So when the IPCC decided to keep RK Pachauri along for the rest of his term, it was widely reported in the news and blogs. Examining the reaction, Tol apparently thinks that all skeptics are absolutely thrilled and overjoyed by what the IPCC has done.
Reuters reports here from the UN conference in Korea. Here are three facts presented in order, reflecting some hard facts about the IPCC on the ground.
“Among the council recommendations [IAC] were that the chair of the IPCC, which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with U.S. climate campaigner Al Gore, should serve only one six-year term.”
“India has affirmed backing for Pachauri, making it hard for others to object to one of the few high-level climate posts held by a developing nation.”
“At Monday’s session, no nations called for Pachauri to quit.”
(This post originally appeared at Bishop Hill. This is a slightly longer version)
The Guardian recently published an article about a “limited-review” of the IPCC chairman RK Pachauri’s personal accounts by KPMG, a firm of accountants. This report had widespread play as it followed closely behind the Telegraph’s apology to RK Pachauri over its article about his business interests. For example, using conclusions and language from the report, George Monbiot went on to claim that the IPCC chairman had “no conflicts of interest“.
(Cross-posted at Bishop Hill)
Last November things began to go seriously wrong for the IPCC version of science. In all this, it is easy to forget how recently it was that green science, and the IPCC in particular, had a good reputation with the public for honesty and integrity. It started after a leading Indian glaciologist called VK Raina public pointed out that he disagreed with the IPCC conclusion that the Himalayan glaciers would melt away within 30 years. Raina said studies showed that at the present rate of melting, the glaciers would take hundreds of years to do so. The Indian public had previously been told that the waters from the Himalayas would dry up within their lifetimes, so this good news was published on the front pages of the newspapers.
We have already seen North track down the trail that leads from Suzlon’s Tulsi Tanti to RK Pachauri . While the meteoric rise and somewhat less spectacular fall of Suzlon is known, new readers might be interested in a fresh perspective on certain parts of the whole story. Details that are not widely known emerge — of movie superstars willing to campaign against climate change and put their money where their mouth is. Actors and actresses strive to bail out floundering windmill sellers and keep their own interests afloat in the process.
Even after the Kyoto protocol, many Indian states were unwilling to support wind-power as a reliable addition to the power grid. In their bid to create conditions conducive for ‘alternative energy sources’, the centre and state governments created a heady mix. These included depreciation benefits, tax benefits, money from the ‘clean development mechanism’ and easy environmental clearance. Tracking the trajectory of the company, one sees how each of these rungs Suzlon planted its feet on became slippery or came undone, leaving the company hanging where it is today.