david rose

Chief of Government Climate Advisor Cleared of Wrongdoing by House of Lords

Read time: 3 mins

Tory peer John Gummer, chair of the government’s official climate advisors, was this week cleared of accusations of misconduct by a House of Lords independent watchdog.

Gummer, also known as Lord Deben and head the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), was accused of failing to properly register the commercial activities of environmental consultancy Sancroft, which he chairs. The claims also said he had failed to declare the company’s clients when talking in debates in the Lords.

But the House of Lords Commissioner for Standards, Lucy Scott-Moncrieff, on Monday dismissed the claims.

Comment: Climate Deniers are Threatened by Extinction Rebellion Because It Challenges the Ideology on Which Their Luxurious Lifestyles are Built

Read time: 7 mins
Extinction Rebellion London protest

The Extinction Rebellion protest movement has grown in scale and impact in recent weeks, bringing energy and chaos to the streets as people wake up to grim climate realities. Alongside the School Strikes, the new movement has been a massive, joyful, peaceful wake-up call to conservative environmentalists and compromised politicians alike. 

But not everyone is taking it well. Several prominent climate science deniers are not pleased at this mass show of concern, and they're using the platform the UK’s mainstream press continues to give them to express their ire.

Comment: Climate Science Deniers Throw Stones at Climate Chief from Their Greenhouse

Read time: 5 mins
Lord Deben John Gummer

A row has broken out over the apparent lack of disclosure of a conflict of interest by Tory politician John Gummer, also known as Lord Deben, who heads government scientific advisory body, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC).

The Mail on Sunday fulminates: “Tory peer John Selwyn Gummer's private company has been paid more than £600,000 from 'green' businesses that stand to make millions from his advice to Ministers.” It then lists a number of alleged payments received by Gummer’s consultancy, Sancroft, by green-tinged companies. This is a huge conflict of interest, the article roars.

The issue will no doubt be investigated – and it's not up to anyone other than Gummer (who denies the allegations) to defend himself – but what’s behind this story is a climate science denial media network in action, and that’s the bigger story not being told.

Mail on Sunday Forced into Another Climate Climbdown as David Rose Errors Exposed Again

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Mail on Sunday correction

The Mail on Sunday newspaper has again been forced to correct the record after continuing to publish  misinformation about climate change by its reporter David Rose.

Yesterday the newspaper was forced to publish an apology about a story from over a year ago that repeated false claims about a study by American scientists suggesting that the so-called ‘hiatus’ in global warming never occurred. The newspaper wrongly stated that the study was based on “faulty data” and had “duped world leaders”.

The Mail on Sunday published a correction that admitted the paper had been forced to admit it broke the Editors' Code of Practice.

Looking Back Over the Year: 11 Faces of 2017

Read time: 9 mins
Trump and Theresa May

1. Theresa May

What a year the prime minister has had. An election she won but also basically lost, Brexit negotiations that she’s pretty much losing but claims she’ll ultimately win, and a climate action agenda that despite her recent strong words still seems pretty uncertain at best.

As May is keen to point out, on her watch the UK has reaffirmed a pledge to phase-out coal by 2025, the UK had a coal free day for the first time since the industrial revolution, and the government has made some positive noises about electric vehicles.

But at the same time, members of her party having been busy meeting with climate science deniers in the US, and continue to push disinformation about climate change in the national media. And that’s not to mention what Brexit could do to the UK’s environmental regulations.

Fake News: Mail on Sunday Forced to Correct ‘Significantly Misleading’ Article on Global Warming ‘Pause’

Read time: 4 mins
Mail on Sunday headline and IPSO complaint confirmation

The Mail on Sunday has been forced to publish a 659-word correction to an article alleging a scientific study exaggerated the extent of global warming and was rushed in an attempt to influence the Paris Agreement negotiations.  

Mail on Sunday Corrects Warming ‘Pause’ Error, Deflects Blame

Read time: 3 mins
Mail on Sunday headline and correction

It’s not always easy to own up to mistakes. So the Mail on Sunday deserves some credit for correcting an error it made reporting average global surface temperatures.

But it’s still unclear how the error came about.

In an article on February 19, Mail on Sunday journalist David Rose wrote that “the world average temperature in January 2017 was about the same as January 1998”. The article implied this was evidence for a global warming ‘pause’ — an argument of which climate science deniers are fond, no matter how many times scientists point out its failings.

The statement appeared in a follow up article to an ‘investigation’ that was widely criticised for trying to unfairly stir up scientific controversy.

Climate Scientists Dismiss Mail on Sunday’s ‘Revelations’ About Global Warming Pause Research

Read time: 6 mins
Mail on Sunday headline on climate change

Thank goodness for the Mail on Sunday and journalist David Rose. Without the endeavours of these serial climate science deniers, the world may never have known that the landmark Paris Agreement was informed by robust scientific evidence.

That’s not exactly how they put it, obviously.

Instead, they claimed to have found “astonishing evidence” that a scientific paper based on “flawed” evidence that was never shared was “rushed” in order to influence the landmark Paris climate change negotiations.

That somewhat ignores the fact the data in the paper has been independently verified, the data was immediately archived, and the authors never discussed the Paris meeting.

The Mail on Sunday article was quickly dismissed by climate scientists as “pathetic”, an “hilarious screw up”, and “an alternative reality”.

David Rose

David Rose

Credentials

  • BA, University of Oxford, Modern History (1978 - 1981). [1]

Background

Read time: 39 mins

Tory Leadership Race: The UKIP-ers and Climate Deniers Backing Gove and Leadsom

Read time: 5 mins
Andrea Leadsom speaking at a KPMG panel discussion

Whoever becomes Britain’s next prime minister will be tasked with many critical energy and climate policy decisions – from ratifying the Paris Agreement to phasing out coal.

Currently, in a surprise to many, Energy Minister Andrea Leadsom is among the top three contenders along with Home Secretary Theresa May and Justice Secretary Michael Gove.

And perhaps one interesting indicator for how each candidate might approach energy and climate decisions as prime minister is to look at the those declaring their support for each of these individuals.

So, from Lord Lawson and Owen Paterson to Boris Johnson and Amber Rudd, who’s backing the top Tory leadership contenders?

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