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« Another underqualified environmental correspondent | Main | Get voting »
Thursday
Nov082007

Peter Horrocks and the truth

Some weeks ago I mentioned a posting on the BBC editors blog by Peter Horrocks, the head of BBC news in which he claimed that the BBC did not have a line on "climate change".

BBC News certainly does not have a line on climate change, however the weight of our coverage reflects the fact that there is an increasingly strong (although not overwhelming) weight of scientific opinion in favour of the proposition that climate change is happening and is being largely caused by man.

He also said this:

It is not the BBC's job to lead opinion or proselytise on this or any other subject. However we can make informed judgements and that is what we will continue to do.

This was all said in the context of a proposed "Planet Relief" special - a weekend in which the whole network would be devoted to programmes on global warming. Eventually Planet Relief was pulled from the schedules, as even the BBC thought it would be unable to brush off questions about its partiality.

Now, however, it seems that the corporation are trying to do exactly what Horrocks said they wouldn't do. According to Rifait Jawaid, again on the BBC editors blog, there is to be a new special about the impact of climate change in Bangladesh.

I think James Sales, who I know from my World Service days, has done a great job by single-handedly taking this project to fruition. I'm told that it was James who first mooted the idea of this [...] show to create awareness on climate change amongst the poverty stricken Bangladeshis.

 [My emphasis]

So here we have a programme which seeks to lead opinion among its audience, something which directly contradicts the claims of Peter Horrocks from just a few months ago. Could someone be telling fibs, we wonder?

I've left a comment on Jawaid's blog post, pointing out this apparent anomoly. I wonder if it will be published? 

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Reader Comments (2)

In their fourth assessment report the IPCC predict a sea level rise of between 0.18-0.59m over the next century. The third assessment report predicted a maximum rise of only 0.88m.

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/03/the-ipcc-sea-level-numbers/

I therefore expect that during his trip to Bangladesh, he will take the opportunity to explain that a "rise in sea level at the Bay of Bengal by a metre" is outside the IPCC projection range and therefore extremely unlikely to occur during the lifetime of anyone who contributes to, or watches the program.

Do you think I'll be disappointed?
Nov 11, 2007 at 8:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterTDK
I usually refrain from holding my breath in these cases...
Nov 11, 2007 at 9:28 PM | Registered CommenterBishop Hill

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