Benny Peiser

Membership Income Triples for UK’s Main Climate Science Denial Campaign Group

Read time: 3 mins

In its latest end of year accounts, the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), the UK’s most prominent climate science denial group, has reported that its total income has increased by around £75,000 over the last year – an increase of almost 20 percent.

The thinktank was founded by Conservative peer Nigel Lawson in 2009, due to his concerns about “extremely damaging and harmful policies” to deal with global warming.

GWPF accounts, published last Friday on Companies House, show a rise in total income from £351,642 in 2018 to £426,244 in 2019 – an increase of £74,602.

Feature | Seeking Solace in 40 Slides of Climate Science Denial

Read time: 5 mins
Benny Peiser presentation in Totnes

It was an evening plagued by powerpoint problems and empty seats for the director of the UK’s leading climate science denial campaign group, the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), who had for one night ventured far from the organisation's offices in Westminster's Tufton Street to the small Devon town of Totnes.

For a group that boasts numerous high-profile Westminster connections — including its founder Lord Nigel Lawson, hereditary peer Matt Ridley, and multiple major Conservative party donors — its real-world impact seemed distinctly underwhelming. 

How the Climategate Email Hack Laid the Foundations for the Fake News Era

Read time: 8 mins
I wish this were fake news poster

DeSmog UK’s first editor, Brendan Montague, shares his personal experience of investigating climate science deniers at the time of Climategate.

Lord Lawson stepped to the curb hailing a taxi. We had both been at an event in a swish Fleet Street hotel discussing illegal phone hacking by journalists. I had followed him out onto the pavement and asked whether the hacking of scientists' emails from the servers of the British university had been unethical — as well as criminal. “It was a whistleblower,” he scowled. The black taxi took off, leaving me in a cloud of diesel.

US Donors Gave $177k to UK Climate Science Denying Global Warming Policy Foundation

Read time: 3 mins
Nigel Lawson

The UK’s premier climate science denial campaign group, the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), received hundreds of thousands of dollars of US donations in 2017, recently published tax returns show.

The money was received at a time when the GWPF was allegedly coordinating with eight other right-wing thinktanks based in and around offices at 55 Tufton Street to push for a hard Brexit.

Another of the groups, the Taxpayers’ Alliance, received at least $286,000 (£223,300) from US-based donors in the last five years, the Guardian recently revealed — raising concerns about the influence of foreign money at a time when lobby groups are pushing to cut regulation to secure trade deals with major polluters such as India, China and the US.

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.

Climate Science Deniers’ Favourite Journal Just got ‘Overhauled’ — And it Could Lead to a Skeptic Shutout

Read time: 2 mins
Library shelves

The publisher of an academic journal beloved by climate science deniers has been revamped to ensure it meets industry standards of peer-review and editorial practice. Its climate science denier editor has also stepped down.

Long a home for papers that cast doubt on climate science and the seriousness of climate change, Energy and Environment was recently bought by publishing behemoth SAGE. As part of the acquisition process, the publisher “over-hauled its peer review practices to bring it into line with SAGE standards”, a spokesperson told DeSmog UK.

Australian Climate Science Denier Ian Plimer Follows Tony Abbott in Pushing Dodgy Science to London Think-Tank

Read time: 9 mins
Ian Plimer

Australians have been keeping the London-based climate science denial group the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) busy in recent weeks.

After former Prime Minister Tony Abbott gave the group’s annual lecture in October, it was the turn of one of Australia’s longest-serving deniers to empty another bucket of bunkum.

Professor Ian Plimer, an Australian director of multiple mining companies, is featured in a new interview with the GWPF to promote his latest subtly titled denial tome: Climate Change Delusion and the Great Energy Rip-off.

When it comes to climate change science, Plimer can be placed very firmly in the file marked “denial.”

Mapped: The Brexiteer Climate Science Denial Network Beneath the Tory-DUP Coalition Pact

Read time: 3 mins
Simplified version of the Tory-DUP network map

Prime Minister Theresa May has announced a deal with Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) that she hopes will keep her in the job.

But while the Tory-DUP “supply and confidence” pact should give May the votes needed to govern, it also strengthens the bonds between the government and a group of climate science deniers that pushed for Brexit.

Climate Science Denier Feels 'A Bit Stupid' After Losing £1K Bet That World Would Be Cooling in 2015

Read time: 2 mins

After 2015 was revealed as the hottest year on record, climate science denier Sir Alan Rudge now admits that he feels “a bit stupid” about betting a climate expert that the world would be cooling by now.

Rudge, a member of Lord Lawson’s climate denial think tank the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), accepts that he must pay up the £1,000 he lost when he bet Chris Hope, a Cambridge University researcher, in 2011 that 2015 would be more than 0.1C cooler than 2008.

But new data released last week shows that 2015 was the hottest year on record and was 0.35C warmer than 2008. As DeSmog UK covered at the time, this cost two members of the GWPF a total £2,000.

Two Members of Lord Lawson's Climate Denial Think Tank Lose £2K In Climate Science Bet

Read time: 2 mins

Want to lose £2,000? Then make a bet with a climate change expert that the world isn’t warming.

That’s what two members of Lord Lawson’s climate change science denying Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) did when they bet Chris Hope, a Cambridge University researcher, that 2015 wouldn’t be the hottest year ever recorded.

You win some, you lose some,” Benny Peiser, director of the GWPF, told Reuters, adding that the pace of warming “is not something that people… need to be greatly concerned about”.

Pages

Subscribe to Benny Peiser