James Delingpole

How the UK's Climate Science Deniers Turned Their Attention to COVID-19

Read time: 16 mins
COVID and climate deniers

On December 31, 2019 many of us were reflecting on the past year and thinking about what opportunities lay ahead. Few were paying close attention to early reports of unexplained cases of pneumonia thousands of miles away in Wuhan, the large capital city of China’s Hubei Province.

But less than three months later, on March 23, Boris Johnson was ordering a national lockdown to try and stop that virus, by then known worldwide as COVID-19, from raging across the UK. This came 52 days after the chief medical officer of England had confirmed the nation’s first two cases.

The coronavirus crisis once again saw the UK divided — between those putting their trust in public health experts and their recommendations, and those quick to question the science on which the government claimed to base its decisions for controlling the pandemic. For those who have watched the decades-long efforts to slow climate action, this was a familiar phenomenon. And the coronavirus pandemic seemed to give fresh ammunition to some familiar faces.

Fossil Fuel-Backed Climate Deniers Rush to Promote Michael Moore Documentary 'Planet of The Humans'

Read time: 11 mins
Michael Moore

Climate science deniers and long-time opponents of renewable energy, many with ties to oil and gas companies, have seized on Michael Moore’s latest documentary to argue the case for continued fossil fuel dependence.

Planet of the Humans investigates the environmental footprint of renewable technologies such as wind, solar and biomass, and argues that the green movement has sold out to corporate interests. The documentary has been viewed over five million times on YouTube since its release last week to coincide with the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day.

But the film, produced by Moore and written and directed by his long-time collaborator Jeff Gibbs, has been widely criticised by energy and climate experts, who say it fails to provide context on the benefits of renewable energy and the negative impacts of fossil fuels, and is based on out-of-date information.

Where Are the Ring-Leaders of the Manufactured Climategate Scandal Now?

Read time: 12 mins
I don't believe in global warming

Ten years ago, leading climate scientists at the University of East Anglia had a mass of email correspondence stolen from their computers and broadcast around the world, in what became known as ‘Climategate’.

Climate science deniers pounced on the leaked emails as supposed proof that scientists were manipulating data and creating panic about climate change out of nothing.

Brexit Party Backtracks on Climate Action Statement, Blaming 'Keen Young Staffer'

Read time: 2 mins
Nigel Farage

The Brexit Party is tying itself in knots over its position on climate change, after a mailout from the party appeared to suggest it was set to acknowledge the climate emergency – a move that would put it at odds with many high-profile climate science deniers in Nigel Farage’s organisation.

Comment: Why was the Blackout Used to Attack Renewables? Because Some Media Still Have an Anti-Climate Action Agenda

Read time: 5 mins

England recently experienced its most severe blackout in more than a decade, leading to a cacophony of calls from the usual suspects to scrap windfarms and abandon plans to turn the country’s electricity supply from brown to green.

The blackout was caused by two power plant outages last Friday – at the Little Barford gas-fired power plant and the Hornsea offshore wind farm. While National Grid was quick to explain that this was a “rare and unusual event”, the breakdown was used to push an anti-climate action agenda under the auspices of debate over energy policy.

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.

Revealed: US Oil Billionaire Charles Koch Funds UK Anti-Environment Spiked Network

Read time: 17 mins
Charles Koch and Spiked

For years, people have speculated about who is behind a shadowy group of well-connected ‘free speech advocates’ spreading far-right ideologies and climate science denial.

Climate Science Deniers Respond to IPCC 1.5C Report with Anger, Fear, and Distortion

Read time: 10 mins
I don't believe in global warming

A big UN report arrived on Monday, saying in no uncertain terms that the world has up to two decades to massively cut emissions by transforming the global economy if we want to avoid terrible climate impacts.

Given the implications of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) findings — government intervention, progressive social policies, more international aid — it’s perhaps not surprising that those who deny climate change is real or a problem pushed back. It took a few days, but the climate science deniers’ response to the IPCC report is now in full flow.

What we see is three distinct layers of climate science denial at play here:

There’s the ‘this isn’t happening’ sun-spot brigade. There’s the ‘this is happening but it’s all a Communist ruse’ zealots. And then there’s the team who reluctantly admit they’ve lost the debate but shoehorn in a number of caveats and excuses to justify why nothing should happen.

Sea Level Science Agency Publishes Response to 'Completely Unwarranted' Attacks from Climate Deniers

Read time: 4 mins
Signs on an Australian beach showing future sea levels under certain climate change scenarios

Scientists at a British government-backed agency have formally responded to “completely unwarranted” claims from climate science deniers that they were engaged in a conspiracy to arbitrarily adjust data from tide gauges around the world and misrepresent sea level rise.

A research paper by two Australian climate science deniers claimed the Permanent Service for Mean Sea Level (PSMSL), based at the UK’s National Oceanography Center, had “arbitrarily” altered sea level data from Aden, in Yemen.

The research, from Australia-based pair Albert Parker and Cliff Ollier, was published in December 2017 in the new journal, Earth Systems and Environment and reported uncritically by the UK’s MailOnline.

Exclusive: Global Sea Level Data Agency Hits Back After Unfounded Attacks from Breitbart and Climate Science Deniers

Read time: 6 mins
Australian beach with signs showing potential levels of sea rise in 2030 and 2050

A British government-backed research project that coordinates data from tide gauges around the world has hit back at climate science deniers who wrongly accused their scientists of faking findings.

The Permanent Service for Mean Sea Level, based in Liverpool, UK, at the National Oceanography Center, dismissed the claims made by two Australia-based scientists who both reject the well-established links between greenhouse gas emissions from human activity and global warming.

The claims gained wider attention after Breitbart’s James Delingpole, a climate science denier, screamed it was certain evidence PSMSL had been “caught red-handed tampering with raw data in order to exaggerate sea level rise.”

PSMSL said despite the claims, tide gauges and satellites showed that sea levels around the globe were rising and the rate of rise had increased in recent decades. Recent adjustments to the tide gauge data under scrutiny, in Yemen, had actually resulted in a decrease in the rate of sea level change, a spokesperson said.

Pages

Subscribe to James Delingpole