institute for economic affairs

How Hard-Brexit Thinktank the Institute for Economic Affairs Helps Climate Science Deniers Push a Deregulation Agenda

Read time: 7 mins
IEA director general Mark Littlewood and Michael Gove

A thinktank has been helping climate science deniers push their agenda on government ministers through its lobbying activities for a UK-US free trade deal, which could see the UK import products such as genetically modified (GM) beef and chlorinated chicken, an undercover investigation by Greenpeace’s Unearthed published in the Guardian reveals.

It exposed how the free-market thinktank the Institute for Economic Affairs is playing a pivotal role in enabling behind-the-scene discussions about a US-UK trade deal while advocating for a hard-Brexit with cabinet ministers.

The Unearthed investigation and a response published by the IEA, seen by DeSmog UK, also reveals details of how climate science deniers, including Tory hereditary peer and coal baron Matt Ridley and DUP MP Sammy Wilson, advocate for deregulation — including on food and environmental standards — as part of the IEA’s push for a hard-Brexit and stronger trans-Atlantic commercial links.

Mapped: Whistleblower Accuses Nine Organisations of Colluding over Hard Brexit

Read time: 6 mins
55 Tufton Street network

Nine right-wing organisations including think tanks pushing disinformation about climate change have been accused of mounting a coordinated campaign to push for a hard Brexit, according to court documents.

Whistleblower Shahmir Sanni, formerly of youth campaign group BeLeave, claims that think tanks and campaign groups held regular meeting at 55 Tufton Street — an office close to Westminster and home to the climate science denial group the Global Warming Policy Foundation — to “agree on a single set of right-wing talking points” and “securing more exposure to the public”.

Some of the topics discussed allegedly included “new policy announcement by the Labour Party, developments in the Brexit negotiations, or any other political news story”.

The accusations were made in documents from an employment tribunal setting out Sanni’s case  against pressure group the TaxPayers’ Alliance, which he has accused of unfair dismissal after he spoke out about illegal behaviour at Vote Leave, the official pro-Brexit campaign group.

Matt Hancock

Matthew Hancock

Background

Matt Hancock is a Conservative politician and has served as MP for West Suffolk since 2010. Following the Cabinet reshuffle on 9 July 2018, he was appointed Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.

Previously, Hancock has served as Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and he held the position of Minister of State for Energy and Climate Change between 15 July 2014 and 11 May 2015.  

Read time: 2 mins

Institute of Economic Affairs

Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA)

Background

Read time: 14 mins
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