There has been the most extraordinary breakthrough in the climate change debate. For years sceptical views have been ignored or ridiculed by the media. But in November we saw the first trickle of water through the dam, and during December it became a cascade. On Nov 18th I hosted a major one-day conference on climate in Brussels, following up with a pre-Copenhagen briefing on Dec 2nd (pictures on the web-site at http://www.rogerhelmer.com).
First the BBC (of all people!) published a piece on its web-site “Whatever happened to global warming?”. Days later, the Sunday Times ran a big feature “Everything you thought you knew about Climate Change is Wrong”. A couple of weeks on we had Professor Ian Plimer, the prominent Australian sceptic, interviewed cordially on the BBC’s “Today” flagship news programme, and a fortnight later, Lord (Nigel) Lawson.
The reason for the Lawson interview was the most extraordinary scientific scandal of our era. A hacker had released a huge trove of files and e-mails from the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU). The CRU works closely with the Hadley Centre in the UK and a handful of other meteorological institutes around the world, and is the source of the basic temperature data that underpins the “science” of global warming. And it now appears that a small coterie of scientists, closely associated with each other and with the IPCC, has been fraudulently manipulating the data, applying “adjustments” to create or exaggerate warming trends, blocking the publication of contrary data and analysis, seeking the dismissal of the editor of a scientific journal that gave space to sceptics, and (perhaps a criminal offence) conspiring to delete data and e-mails which they feared could be subject to Freedom of Information requests.
It is now clear that the IPCC at the very least has failed in due diligence, and has not adequately verified the data it is using, if indeed it has not colluded in the fraud. Accordingly, I and several colleagues (Viscount Monckton of Brenchley, US Professor S. Fred Singer, and Dutch Professor Hans Labohm), have written to the Chairman of the Nobel Prize Committee in Norway calling on him to withdraw the 2007 Nobel Prize awarded to the IPCC.
This is a worse fraud than the Piltdown Man. The systematic falsification of data, and the loss or destruction of much of the database, means that we simply can’t know the truth — although independent satellite data have always shown a much smaller warming trend than CRU. I have always taken for granted the relatively rapid warming from the mid-seventies up to 1998, but now even this is in question. It may be merely a construct of the conspiracy.
But the story didn’t stop there. In Australia, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd tried for the second time to get a Cap’n’Trade bill through parliament. He hoped to have the support of the Liberal (Conservative) Party led by Malcolm Turnbull, who supported the bill. But thanks to a strong l lobbying campaign against the bill by Australian scientists, the Senate voted it down — and the Liberal Party, deeply unhappy with Turnbull’s ultra-green stance, sacked him and appointed a sceptic, Tony Abbott, in his place. There is a warning here for leaders of centre-right parties who try to push their green credentials too far.
And right on cue, here in Britain former leadership contender David Davis MP published an article in the Independent, in which he set out his deep concerns at the political and economic implications of CO2 emission reduction programmes, while a poll published in the Times shows the majority of British voters (59%) do not believe that human activity causes climate change. The wheels are well and truly coming off the global warming band-wagon. For years I have ploughed a lonely furrow on this issue, so I hope you’ll forgive me if I say I am enjoying a warm glow of vindication.