While considerable attention has been paid by me and others to the cozy UK “inquiries”, Climategate is featuring prominently in another not-so-cozy forum in the US, though the connection has not been articulated to a larger audience.
A June 18 article in the New York Times reports:
Three judges issued an order (pdf) Wednesday that the motions for remand be placed on hold as EPA considers numerous petitions asking it to reconsider the finding.
The order freezes the motions for remand until two weeks after the agency makes a decision, or until Aug. 16, whichever comes first. That was the action sought by EPA, which has said it expects to decide on the petitions for reconsideration in late July.
These various petitions are animated by Climategate documents. Here’s my understanding of the present rollcall of proceedings.
(2) 17 petitions in court that the Endangerment Finding be remanded to EPA for further consideration – see here – consolidated as Coalition for Responsible Regulation Inc., et al., v. EPA. (Individual states appear to be parties to these petitions.);
The decision reported on Friday delays these remand petitions pending EPA’s promised disposition of the Petitions for Reconsideration at the end of July.
The docket here commences with motions by Virginia and Alabama calling on the court to remand the Endangerment Finding to EPA requiring them to take further evidence, citing the Climategate emails. The motion (Apr 15, 2010) says:
Despite the explosive revelations of climate-gate, EPA insouciantly issued its Finding on December 15, 2009 without providing any mechanism for the consideration of this new information. Despite the pendency of motions for reconsideration, the agency has announced its intent to begin rule-making in reliance on the un-re-examined Finding.
Respondent EPA moved (further down same docket here) to hold these motions in abeyance pending the disposition of the Petitions for Reconsideration. Massachusetts intervened here. In its response, EPA stated that it anticipated a decision on the Petitions for Reconsideration by the end of July:
EPA is in the process of carefully reviewing the ten petitions for reconsideration (and seven supplements thereto) submitted to the Agency, and anticipates that it will issue its decision with respect to all the petitions on or about July 30, 2010.
The decision reported on Friday (as I understand it) pushed the petitions asking for the matter to be remanded to EPA back to the earliest of August 16 or two weeks after the EPA rules on the Petitions for Reconsideration.
What makes these motions of particular interest to those interested in Climategate is that some of the petitions for reconsideration here contain detailed summaries and commentaries on the Climategate emails – the detail of which places the negligence of the Oxburgh “inquiry” in clear focus.
Thus in addition to the UK inquiries, the Climategate emails have embroiled the disposition of the EPA Endangerment Finding ( see here for the Endangerment Finding and many volumes of responses.)