Pachauri won't quit over glacier meltdown blunder
Climate change panel's chief again admits mistake in report.
New Delhi: Rajendra Pachauri, president of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), on Saturday said he would not quit over the IPCC blunder of saying that Himalayan glaciers would disappear by 2035.
While admitting the mistake once again at a press conference in New Delhi, Pachauri said it did not take away from the report's overall conclusion that glaciers in the Himalayas were receding.
"I have no intention of resigning from my position as its president. I was elected by all the countries and will complete the fifth IPCC assessment report on climate change," he said. The fifth report is scheduled in 2013.
Asked about IPCC's credibility being affected due to the blunder, Pachauri said: "Rational people see the larger picture. And I am confident world leaders would continue to repose their faith in IPCC and there will be no deviation from that."
On a query regarding the need to review the whole of the IPCC's 2007 fourth assessment report, he said: "You can't generalise based on the mistake done over the melting of Himalayan glaciers. Our procedure is robust and adheres to the IPCC procedure."
"There is absolutely no information available on the rate at which Himalayan glaciers are melting. It is unfortunate that there is no research on glacier melting in India or the SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Corporation) nations. We should make a plan for proper evaluation and calculation of melting of glaciers," he added.
While preparing the fifth report, the IPCC would convene a meeting of the "lead authors" of its chapters "to ensure nothing like this happens again", Pachauri said.
He reacted sharply to a suggestion that The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI)--the think tank he also heads--had benefitted from the alarmist statement that Himalayan glaciers may disappear by 2035.
"TERI is not involved in this mistake," Pachauri said.
When it was pointed out that Syed Iqbal Hasnain, the scientists whose 1999 statement had given rise to the goof-up, was now a "senior fellow" at TERI, Pachauri shot back: "He was in JNU (Jawaharlal Nehru University) then. He has been a senior fellow here for the last two years."