Secular Right | Reality & Reason

Feb/10

21

The Church of Climate Change (Again)

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Here’s the Sunday Telegraph’s Christopher Booker:

As the roof continues to fall in on them, in an endless succession of scandals, the beleaguered defenders of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have at last managed to mount a riposte by coming up with a “scandal” of their own. Under the headline “fabricated quote used to discredit climate scientist”, The Independent recently trumpeted that a quotation attributed by “climate sceptics” to Sir John Houghton – one of the IPCC’s founders and long a key figure in the production of its increasingly alarmist reports as chairman of its scientific Working Group I – was an invention. Sir John was now insisting, as he again did in a letter to last week’s Observer, that he never said it or anything like it.

The sentence the former head of the UK Met Office now denies ever using – although in the past four years it has been cited unchallenged more than 100,000 times on the internet – was “unless we announce disasters, no one will listen”. In what looked like a concerted operation, Sir John’s disclaimer was circulated to sympathetic journalists across the world, along with demands for corrections and apologies issued to various prominent “climate sceptics” who had publicly quoted the remark…

…But what also came to light, thanks to that admirable expert on “risk”, Professor John Adams, and Professor Philip Stott, who for years was almost the only voice critical of climate hysteria in the British press, is an interview Sir John gave to The Sunday Telegraph in its “Me and My God” slot on September 10, 1995. As a fervent evangelical Christian, Sir John claimed that global warming might well be one of those disasters sent by God to warn man to mend his ways (“God tries to coax and woo but he also uses disasters”). He went on: “If we are to have a good environmental policy in the future, we will have to have a disaster”.

You can see a PDF of the quote here.
To repeat again, none of this ‘disproves’ climate change. What it does do, however, is shed a most interesting light on the nature (for some) of their belief in it.

2 comments

  • Cephus · February 22, 2010 at 3:59 pm

    Certainly it doesn’t discredit global warming, we know the planet goes through warming and cooling cycles and have established it goes back probably to the origin of the planet itself. What we haven’t established is that human involvement is causing it and certainly, the evidence doesn’t seem to support that claim. That’s not good for the leftists, they want to blame people for it, evidence or no. It’s interesting that the only people who are making these crackpot claims are the ones who stand to make money from it, either with research grant money, selling books or by selling those idiotic carbon credits and the like.

    Human-caused global warming simply isn’t credible. Just don’t tell the crazies on the left that.

  • TTT · March 1, 2010 at 9:13 am

    On the contrary: what isn’t the least bit credible would be that the human activity of digging up buried petrocarbons and turning them into greenhouse gases by the billions of tons could somehow NOT be related to the incontrovertible fact that atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations are now higher than at any point in the last 650,000 years–all intervening ice age cycles having come nowhere near such levels.

    This is the “Big Lie” of eco-denialists. They focus on petty, personality-driven arguments–“some guy at East Anglia wants to punch his critics! I am shocked–SHOCKED!”–but at the end of the day they’re really trying to say that all of mainstream chemistry is a lie. It sounded better in the original 9/11Truther.

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