In anticipation of Steven Hayward's Weekly Standard article on the impact of hacked e-mails from East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit, I suggest Ronald Bailey's article this week in Reason. Bailey is sympathetic to man-made climate change, and offers a concise overview of the consequences and potential recovery paths from this "tragedy."
It seems, perhaps for the first time, that self-respecting global warming alarmists and skeptics are publically pursuing a common goal: transparency. This could mark a watershed moment on several fronts. A wide-spread, fully-transparent re-evaluation of climate-change evidence which results in findings adverse to previous conclusions would instigate a terrible public outcry. Public opinion would continue to swing (Europeans cling to global warming with dogmatic piety, but American belief dropped 8% in the last year - and that occurred before climategate).
Further, as global leaders have always been hesitant to actually implement policies to confront warming - a tribute to their lingering self-preservation instincts - scientific doubt could provide cover for an indefinite pause. Paul Rahe suggests precisely this path for the Copenhagen climate summit, advising that Pres. Obama assert his devotion to principled science while divesting himself of unpopular cap-and-trade legislation.
I expect that the scandal surrounding doctored reports, suppressed dissents and hidden data in the environmental community has only begun. This revelation, perhaps coupled with a subsequent revolt at Copenhagen, could prove to be global warming's Waterloo.