The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration provided documents to the House science committee Wednesday after months of fighting with the committee's chairman.
Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, has been battling NOAA over a study published earlier this year that showed historic ocean temperatures refuting the long-held belief that there was a pause in global warming during recent years.
Smith, a climate change doubter, believes NOAA scientists bent the data to fit President Obama's climate change agenda. Smith has subpoenaed NOAA employees to dredge up communications that show a political slant, but NOAA resisted to the point that Smith agreed to back down on asking for scientists' emails.
On Wednesday, Smith said he was pleased that NOAA turned over documents to the House Science, Space and Technology Committee.
"I am encouraged by NOAA's acknowledgment of its obligation to produce documents and communications in response to the committee's lawfully issued subpoena," he said. "I am also glad to see that NOAA has committed to produce additional items as they are identified. We will carefully review these documents and look forward to additional productions from NOAA."
The study reported that the rate of global warming in the last 15 years has been as fast, if not faster than, the rate of global warming during the latter half of the 20th century.
As part of the study, researcher Thomas Karl used temperatures from 30,000 surface stations, as compared to the 7,000 stations used in older studies. The data also included temperatures from 2014, the hottest year on record.
Democrats, as well as many scientists, have pilloried Smith for seeking the scientists' communications.
Many scientist groups have warned of a chilling effect on future research on climate change by government scientists who could worry about political influence on their studies.
Smith said he believes the study was rushed to publication and the science was not properly reviewed. The journal Science, which published the study, hit back at those claims last month.