TEARS….


Richard Black here chillingly relates – without an ounce of balancing comment – how our lunatic leaders in Cancun are hatching a plot to deprive us of £100bn a year (of which the UK’s share will be at least £1.5bn a year, enough to pay for legions of university students to avoid going into debt)by ludicrously jacking up “carbon” taxes. Christopher Monckton spells out here what Mr Black doesn’t – that the cash will actually be used by the UN to construct a massive new, unaccountable world government that will spend the billions on self-aggrandisement and delusion. As usual, the bilge is illustrated with alarmist pictures. I surmise in this case that the water is made up of not of melting glaciers but of the tears of the Statue of Liberty as she realises what crimes are being committed in her name. Shame on the BBC for reporting this outrage in such partisan terms.

CANCUN HOT AIR

As we miserable lot in Blighty shiver and freeze, Richard Black is there at Cancun in the nice 79 degrees heat (no doubt in a luxury hotel) at our expense, complaining plaintively that the talks may be to no avail , but at the same time warning that – because CO2 levels are going to start rising again – we are all in dire danger because of our complacency. He (and/or the story sub)are also concerned to warn us that climate change has already done for the mangroves on the Cancun coast, though how they know that with certainty escapes me.

What Mr Black wilfully ignores is the rather more negative reports about Cancun that are impossible to avoid everywhere on the internet. This editorial, for example, from the Washington Times which says the talks are doomed quite simply because AGW was built on a tissue of lies and scientific twisting. I also spotted this, which nails the central Cancun-IPCC alarmist porkie that sea levels are rising faster than in the past. And finally, it escapes Mr Black that one of the core alarmist prediction of warmists/Met Office/UEA – that snow would become a thing of the past in the UK within a few years – has also rather convincingly been found to be hot air. One of my favourite ladies, Jo Nova nails the UK snow lie admirably.

Enjoy the Cancun sun, Richard, and never let inconvenient truth get in the way of your worldview.

CARBON PUFF

What turns my stomach completely about BBC reporting of so-called climate change is that reporters systematically ignore the key issues such as that the rise in fuel prices demanded by eco freaks is causing massive hardship. Meanwhile Richard Black goes on reporting the frenzied but trivial outpourings of the world global warming industry scam – those thousands of “scientists” engaged in alarmist frenzy that are paid by governments, multi-nationals and tranzis to jack up hysteria and pump out lies. Today he is focusing on the fears of the Global Carbon Project that even thought we have had a recession, CO2 emissions have only gone down by “peanuts” (such is the eloquence of these brilliant minds). And as Cancun approaches, he naturally ramps up the solemn GCP prediction on that the “carbon” rise is about to start again (according to the models) condemining us all to certain and imminent blistering, heat exhaustion and, of course, death. Mr Black also blatantly misreports the main point of his story; India and China do not give a stuff about CO2 emissions (which rose by an average of a healthy 7% or so) and are getting on with their main tasks of generating wealth and economic expansion. The horror of Black’s reporting is that he wilfully ignores the elephant in the room: the only way out of poverty is through cheap electricity and power. What the greenies want is the reverse.

BRUTAL BLACK

I have just spent two days at a conference about “ethical” investment. The reason is that I am trying to raise money for a charity that is aiming to improve services for deprived children. Thus the aim of the Good Deals event seemed laudable enough – to bring those with funds (banks, trusts, etc)in contact with humble supplicants like myself. There were many senior figures there such as the head of Deutsche Bank in the UK, the government’s minister for social responsibility, and his equivalent at Marks and Spencer. But what I didn’t bargain for was the extent that the agenda of the conference would be totally hijacked and infected by greenies. Every participant semed to be a rabid supporter of AGW. It felt as though I had woken up in the middle of a strange horror movie and I think if I had mentioned any opposition to their crusade, I would have been lynched. One guy, for example, wanted to raise about £1m for a “community energy” (ie useless windfarms)in Cornwall. The contempt with which he dismissed his “opponents” – those hapless individuals who did not want the beautiful Cornish landscape to be despoiled – was blood-curdling.

And so it is in the BBC’s reporting. Here is our friend Richard Black in full flow about the importance of an Anglo-Indian agreement – announced a couple of days back when I was being indoctrinated – to work together to on the path of a “low-carbon co-operation”. What’s chilling is that it seems that everyone – Marks and Spencer, government lackeys, the CBI, and no doubt a whole army of financial advisers – now agree with Mr Black that such econut zealotry is essential for progress. Not only that, they also seem to believe in cult-like fashion that farting cows are the answer to India’s energy problems. Strange however,isn’t it, that India is building coal fired power stations at a rate of knots while Chris Huhne and call me Dave are busy dismantling our capacity to generate cheap electricity? And note how Mr Black’s true sentiments about the crusade he’s engaged in are expressed. The Copenhagen negotiations last year were “brutally ended”. What can he mean? And how does that square with balanced journalism?

FORCES OF REPRESSION

Richard Black is cranking up the pressure on biodiversity, today repeating from Japan the killer line that a fifth of the world’s species are under the threat. And on Today, James Naughtie simperingly accepted the Cleggeron line from Caroline Spelman that another £100m needs tipping down the aid chute to assist with the biodiversity nonsense. His only concern was whether it was enough.

Meanwhile his business BBC colleague Richard Anderson has filed a trio of reports here, here and here which are plainly part of the same concerted indoctrination effort. They are key statement of the BBC’s creed on this topic, So I have been looking into them.

The first point to note is that they are a parrot-like regurgitation of a report compiled by the accountants Price Waterhouse Cooper for the World Economic Forum. This purports to be “independent”, but is anything but; a moment’s reading shows that it is a one-sided homily in favour of the UN’s alarmist stance on both biodiversity and climate change that includes claims that (for example)because of climate change, no coral will be left in the world by 2050. When accountants take up a topic so seriously, hang on to your wallets! And as PWC say themselves in this report, they see this whole areas an an “opportunity”, that is, a new chance to extract as much money as possible. The fact that Mr Anderson accepts this report’s findings so sweepingly is an indication of the bankuptcy of so much of the BBC’s journalism.

For the sake of brevity, I have focused in the next section on the detailed claims by Mr Anderson in the second report of his trilogy. First, he suggests that Scottish fisheries have declined and fishermen are being forced to retire because of biodiversity loss. Oh yes? Actually, the crisis in North Sea fishing to which he refers has another, simpler cause. It’s called the Common Fisheries Policy, enforced with jackboot ruthlessness by our masters in Brussels. Richard North chronicles its horrendous effects here. Mr Anderson moves on with his scattergun to say that the Malaysian island of Sabah is also similarly being mindlessly despoiled. Well actually, Sabah is one of the poorer areas of Asia, and its inhabitants need better ways of making money. Strong conservationist policies are in place, but the idea that it can remain as an unspoiled, pristine back-to-nature idyll would I suspect be somewhat challenged by its natives.

Moving on, Mr Anderson then asserts:

Another sector that has been hit by damage to the natural world – often referred to as biodiversity loss – is tourism. For example, lions across Africa have disappeared from 80% of their former habitat, hitting game reserves and associated businesses.
Rising temperatures caused in part by greenhouse gases have also seen glaciers and snow coverage shrinking, hitting winter sports resorts that are seeing ski seasons cut short.Rising sea temperatures and water levels are also affecting coastal regions and small islands such as the Maldives, and particularly those businesses dependent on coral reefs, 20% of which have disappeared in the past few decades alone.

There is so much wrong with this that it is difficult to know where to start. Climate alarmist models have been predicting the end of ski-ing for 20 years. FACT is that 2009-10 was one of the best ski-ing seasons ever with so much snow that resorts could not cope. FACT two is that, much as greenies might want wild lions wondering around everywhere, lions and people do not go together in lots of areas of Africa. Wiki suggests that there are between 20,000 and 47,000 pairs, and in the Masai Mara and elsewhere, excellent conservationist policies are in place. I accept that more needs doing in this respect, but that is not a reasion to end industrial production as we know it. FACT three is that rising sea temperatures and water levels are not affecting the Maldives despite claims to the contrary. And FACT four, corals reefs – another perennial greenie yelp point – are sensitive organisms. They suffer bleaching for a variety of reasons, but then usually recover. But every bleaching incident is recorded by greenies as a calamity, and each (just like Arctic melting) provides constant cod “evidence” for them to parrot their claims.

On such ludicrous, slender foundations, Mr Anderson moves on to his main claim, that big nasty multi-nationals are causing trillions of pounds of damage to the environment and therefore endless new regulation is required to quantify, measure and hamper what they do. His “assessment” of alleged damage is, of course, conducted on a kangaroo court basis. The reality is, as he grudgingly points out, that many companies do have conservationist policies and are pursuing them with sensible vigour. As Matt Ridley so brilliantly pointed out in The Rational Optimist, those multi-nationals that Mr Anderson so reviles have worked pretty effectively over the years to provide the needs of most of the world’s burgeoning population, and in doing so they have affected miracles of matching supply with demand. And we and they don’t need new layers of biodiversity politicians and police to bedevil our lives. The outrage is – as the interview with Caroline Spelman today underlined – that the BBC is working hand in glove with government to create those new forces of repression.

VEGGIE BLACK…

Richard Black’s at it again, this time claiming to discuss objectively whether meat rearing is sustainable. His agenda of course, is that he is a greenie and greenies such as IPCC boss Patchy Pachauri and his acolytes make no secret of their contempt for human carnivores. They want the world to become vegan in the name of “sustainability”. Mr Black sticks closely to this script and uses as the main fulcrum of his bleatings a paper by two eco-nuts from Canada, who have done what such people always do, created a snappy model of “earth boundaries” and then said that by 2050, we will all be dying because of our nasty meat-lust.

As usual, Mr Black chooses to ignore alternative viewpoints, such as this admirable discussion by Willis Eschenbach, in which he shows that if meat production stopped tomorrow, more, not less, land would be needed to grow replacement vegetable protein, and we would also lose the ancilliary products from animal husbandry such as leather and feathers – all of which would take extra resources to produce. In other words, the Canadian model, along with the greenie obsession with vegetarianism, is a load of cobblers (of course you might not want to eat meat for other reasons, but that is a separate debate). Yet again, Mr Black ignores the key facts.

BLACK WATER….

Today’s a bit of a red-letter day in that the Royal Society – the BBC’s favourite bunch of warmist zealots – has been forced by its members to modify its predictions about climate change so that it now says, according to today’s Times:

“The size of future temperature increases and other aspects of climate change, especially at the regional scale, are still subject to uncertainty.”

Nothing so far on the BBC website about this, but Richard Black ploughs on relentlessly in his warmist furrow. This morning, he reports another of the endless stream of alarmist features in Nature, this one about “water security”, another greenie obsession. From my reading, the article itself does not mention much about climate change, concentrating instead on pollution. But have no fear, our non-scientist Richard is determined to put his own spin on things, so he turns to the world’s most alarmist organisation, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, despite the fact that – as he himself acknowledges – they had nothing to do with the report or the research it is allegedly based upon. This is what they say, with wearying predictability:

“Climate change is going to affect the amount of water that comes in as precipitation; and if you overlay that on an already stressed population, we’re rolling the dice.”

With Alice in Wonderland erudition and sophistication like that, you can really tell where the BBC’s £1bn a year expenditure on broadcast journalism is going.

THINGS YOU WON’T SEE ON THE BBC

Richard Black, discussing windfarms, gives unmoderated almost endless space to a nutter who wants to get rid of Britain’s planning laws so that millions of acres of our countryside can be blighted by these unnecessary monstrosities. He fails to mention anything about the huge cost or the level of subsidy required – facts easily available to him via Christopher Booker’s column.

This BBC article tells us that Wembley stadium is selling halal meat to its customers whether they like it or not. But don’t worry, friends. It has a quote from a Muslim saying that slitting an unstunned and fully conscious animal’s throat – as is required in this barbaric ritual – is not cruel. Missing from the BBC is any mention that to their eternal shame, Waitrose, Tesco’s and M and S have all, like Wembley, been lying through their teeth about their alleged commitment to animal welfare. All of them think it’s OK to sell us without telling us meat that has been slaughtered in this vile way. For the BBC, of course, it’s not an issue; anything Muslims do in the name of their religion must be condoned – or brushed under the carpet.

WARMING AND COOLING

My Biased BBC colleague Robin Horbury is much better at AGW posts than me but I wanted to bring Richard Black’s latest salvo to your attention. Note how poor Richard feels oppressed by those who dare question AGW. He seems to now saying that “ideological purity” (or what we simply call balance) is impossible because he is under attack from pro-warmers as well as   “deniers”. Please be gentle with your feedback, I fear Richard is feeling hot under the collar!

BIG OIL

So-called charities like Oxfam and WWF are without doubt the leaders of climate change hysteria. They demonstrated this at the recent formal UN climate change talks by smashing the Saudia Arabia nameplate in pieces and despositing it in a hotel lavatory bowl, sparking a diplomatic incident. Their grievance was apparently that the Saudi desire to keep selling oil so that our cars can run and we can keep warm was blocking their desire for new, more extreme climate change measures. The behaviour of the WWF and Oxfam delegates offended even the climate change loonies who attend such events and now the offenders have been ‘disciplined’ and suspended from future talks for a limited period.

In his report of the furore, Richard Black, that continually objective BBC doyen of climate change reporting, makes no bones that he is displeased. But not with with the nutters at Oxfam and WWF – in his book it seems that they have every right to be frustrated. No, his real worry seems to be that despite the wonderful Obama, the US is unlikely to pass anti-emissions legislation any time soon. His attitude is illustrated graphically by the picture chosen to accompany the story: of a giant Saudi oil tanker. It’s big oil stopping progress on climate change, don’t ya know? And against that, any yobbery is fine.

BLACK IS WHITE (AGAIN)

Richard Black plumbs ever-lower depths in his distortions. Here, in his latest Earth Watch posting, he claims – without an ounce of qualification – that most Americans want climate change measures to be introduced, and that Obama has disappointed them. He’s being disingenuous in the extreme. Pew, as Mr Black should well know, is one of the main polling organisations in the US, and their latest findings on climate change – available with two seconds’ effort on Watt’s Up with That? – found that only 28% of voters thought it was a priority, and it was bottom of 20 topics of urgent concern, behind even the esoterics of trade policy. A recent Gallup poll asked slightly different questions and found that 48% of Americans think that claims about climate change are exaggerated. This was the highest total for this belief in a decade, and it came despite the torrent of climate change scare stories emanating from the pens of doomsayers like Mr Black.

Our friend Richard also claims that the reason Oz PM Kevin Rudd was booted out in April was because voters were unhappy that he had diluted plans to tax CO2 producers. This, even by Mr Black’s standards, is utter tosh. Rudd went because his eco-freak CO2 trading plans had so enraged the opposition and voters that even his lefty Labour colleagues realised the game was up. It takes Herculean efforts to throw away a landslide victory in less than a full term, but Rudd did it. Don’t take my word for it, Richard – have a look at analysis in the Australian. It makes it pretty damn clear that you are talking a load of limey cobblers.

SANGATTE INSECTS…

Richard Black’s relentless search to attribute every event in the universe to climate change continues unabated. Today, he’s reported the lunatic findings by the British Dragonfly Society (no less) that the rather charming and beautiful dainty damselfly – a relative of the dragonfly – has returned, after an absence of almost 60 years, to a habitat in England, in Kent. The reason, Mr Black predictably reports, is global warming; Britain is getting alarmingly warmer, and the creatures have therefore been able to hop across the English channel. He adds that other cousins of the damselfly – also encouraged by “climate change” – are ready to join the Sangatte-style insect throng.

Even by his own standards of ecofreakery and flawed science, though, this story is full of holes. First, because he tells us that this same dainty damselfly used to be found in Essex, but its habitat was washed away in 1952 in the disastrous east-coast floods. Prior to that, it presumably existed in the UK for centuries. But,er, Richard, it was a lot, lot colder in the past (according to you and your warmist fanatic chums who worship the hockey stick) and our insect friend was already here, so why is its return the result of warming? Second, I thought one of Richard’s main concerns (a topic he returns to time and time again) was the worship word “biodiversity”. Surely, Mr Black (on your own logic), if warming is triggering the return of more species to Britain that’s a good thing?

Personally, I’d put the whole thing down to the ebb and flow of nature. But then, I’m not a BBC environment correspondent with a major political agenda.

BLACK ICE

The BBC in general, and Richard Black in particular, have been warning us for years, in typical alarmist fashion, that Greenland’s ice is melting and we are all going to drown. This is what Mr Black wrote in 2009:

The Greenland ice sheet is losing its mass faster than in previous years and making an increasing contribution to sea level rise, a study has confirmed…The team used weather data, satellite readings and models of ice sheet behaviour to analyse the annual loss of 273 thousand million tonnes of ice…Melting of the entire sheet would raise sea levels globally by about 7m (20ft).

There are dozens more references to this Doomsday picture over the years; the tone throughout is that we are in serious danger; the sort of scenario that gives our kids nightmares. I searched in vain for any mention on the BBC wenbsite that such fears might be doubtful, that other scientists thought differently. Steve Goddard, though, on Watt’s Up With That? is more rigorous in his approach. He’s actually checked the Greenland ice records (unlike, it seems, Richard Black et al – never let the facts get in the way of good climate change scare), and found that not only were the stories based on cherry-picked data, but also that even those scientists who were predicting Armageddon some time back have now retracted:

Ice loss in Greenland has had some climatologists speculating that global warming might have brought on a scary new regime of wildly heightened ice loss and an ever-faster rise in sea level. But glaciologists reported at the American Geophysical Union meeting that Greenland ice’s Armageddon has come to an end.

Chances of Black and co reporting this? And of noting that Greenland, despite their scare stories, remains as cold and icy as ever? Zero.

EGG ON FACE…

I don’t know how much Richard Black is paid by the BBC. They spend almost a billion a year on their newsgathering and news programmes, but don’t reveal individual salaries. I do know, however, that a friend of mine who is a BBC presenter is paid north of £150,000 a year; on that basis Mr Black, as a specialist correspondent, probably gets at least £70K and probably substantially more.

He is presumably asked as part of his responsibilities to be reasonably thorough in his assessment of material.

But is he thorough enough? On July 5, he filed an analysis of three reports into aspects of climate change, by Oxburgh, the UK House of Commons Science and Technology Committee and the Dutch Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL). Yesterday, I wrote about severe reservations about the first two. Mr Black,however, was convinced of their rectitude, and wrote that:

…none is judged….to undermine the central tenets of man-made climate change.

He singled out from the Dutch report these paragraphs:

Our findings do not contradict the main conclusions of the IPCC on impacts, adaptation and vulnerability related to climate change… The negative impacts under unmitigated climate change in the future pose substantial risks to most parts of the world, with risks increasing at higher global average temperatures.

This, he clearly believed, particularly supported his conclusion. In other words, he took the PBL report as a massive vindication of the BBC’s stance in support of AGW.

But was he correct? Indur M Goklany, by contrast, is a scientist, and has been writing about these issues for decades. There isn’t space to summarise here all his arguments, and I urge you to read the piece, which was filed on the What’s Up With That? website a few hours ago. But his conclusion about PBL?

To summarize, the PBL gave the IPCC’s summary statements on regional impacts a relatively clean bill of health because it only looked for errors of commission in a limited number of chapters while deeming errors of omission to be an acceptable part of a “risk-oriented approach.” Under the latter approach, it would be acceptable for executive summaries to emphasize costs and, moreover, highlight the upper end of these costs, even as they eschew information on benefits. And providing policy makers with the broader context might be nice, but optional.

PBL may label this a “risk-oriented approach”, but most rational people would label it “biased and unbalanced”.

So where does that leave Mr Black? I contend with egg all over his professional, highly-paid face. He was eager to rush into print in support of the climate science conclusions of PBL (and the other two reports), but unlike Dr Goklany, seemingly did not sufficiently analyse the core issues, or whether the extravagant press-released claims of the authors were properly supported.

WHITEWASH!

As expected, the Muir Russell report into Climategate is a complete, farcical whitewash. People who know far more about the issues involved are still digesting the horror of it all, but it’s already clear, here, here and here, that Sir Muir and his cronies from the scientific establishment grotesquely misrepresented or ignored the key points made by sceptics. The BBC of course, is in a completely different groove. To Richard Black, the headline is straightforward – vinidcation. The sceptics are nutters.

I will post more when the dust settles, but prepare for an evening of the sounds of BBC reporters applying that white paint. Meanwhile, James Delingpole carries on reporting the full horror of what Black and his cohorts are supporting: the spending of £50bn a year of our money on lunatic climate change schemes. I weep.