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« Counting the cost | Main | One extreme to another »
Thursday
Nov282013

A right royal showdown

The long-awaited meeting between representatives of GWPF and the Royal Society has at last taken place. Nigel Lawson has a brief report on the meeting at the Spectator, revealing little about the content, except for the fact that he is prevented from telling more by a demand for secrecy imposed by the Royal Society fellows themselves.

This is, to say the least, monumentally pathetic of them. Lawson sounds as though he found the experience slightly frustrating:

But what did emerge was that, if anyone needed educating, it was them. Despite the fact that they were headed by Professor Sir Brian Hoskins, the Director of the Grantham Institute, which has pronounced views on climate policy, and a member of the Climate Change Committee, which is concerned with the implementation of the Climate Change Act, they were very reluctant to engage on the crucial issue of climate change policy at all.

I have heard a few other details on the grapevine and I gather that the Royal Society fellows are more inclined to believe computer models than empirical data. So I wonder if some revision on that whole "scientific method" thingy might be in order too.

 

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Reader Comments (168)

graphicconception

The secrecy protects the GWPF from embarrassment while they are schooled in the science.
The GWPF can now understand the science as well as paid scientists.
The science is settled by satellites and bigger computers and more climate researchers.
The public have missed their chance to understand so they must be taxed.
The taxes will pay the countries who are damaged by the cold caused by warming.

Nov 28, 2013 at 1:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Reed

SteveW - snide and off topic? The Bishop explicitly mentioned models in his snide swipe at the RS, so not really.

Why should they want it kept secret? They have no desire to feed the denial machine that would inevitably misreport and misrepresent anything that was said by those present and that would publicly pillory any fellows attending. Even without having attended and without being privy to the details of the meeting, the Bishop see fit to berate Royal Society fellows (all of them presumably) as being "more inclined to believe computer models than empirical data" and to suggest he knows better than the "scientific method" thingy.

Nov 28, 2013 at 1:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterChandra

Could Richard Tol clear up the exact terms of the discussion? Lawson doesn’t actually say he’s not allowed to reveal the proceedings of the meeting, does he? Just that the meeting was held behind closed doors, with no press present. You can hardly imagine Professor Lindzen promising never to reveal what he said to the RS or what they said to him.

Nov 28, 2013 at 2:00 PM | Registered Commentergeoffchambers

DNFTT

Nov 28, 2013 at 2:04 PM | Registered Commenterjohanna

They like their well played blinders.

Nov 28, 2013 at 2:05 PM | Registered CommenterPharos

Perhaps all of the people present at the meeting do contribute their expertise to blogs like this using names like Matt Ridley, Richard Tol, nlawson, ZedsDeadBed, Chandra, Entropic Man and bhoskins. If so, would that be good enough? Please note this is not a criticism of anyone not using their real name, here or anywhere else, but an honest and relevant question. Would such disclosure be enough? How would we know if it was true? Would it be an invasion of privacy to ask?

Nov 28, 2013 at 2:43 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Drake

According to allegations arising from gossip in the market, relayed to a "journalist" by someone whose hairdresser's cousin knew the circumstances, models prove that a tree fell in the forest.

The refusal of "the authorities" to take this seriously was trenchantly condemned by crusading activist and long time critic of most things, Brewarrina Cruise, as ..."

Welcome to the Royal Society.

Nov 28, 2013 at 2:46 PM | Registered Commenterjohanna

The shrillness has gone up a few decibels in certain quarters as they try to defend the indefensible. I see the claim that secrecy was imposed in order not to feed the denial machine has been made, how predictable.
The anti-science and anti-open debate stance of the RS is appalling and irresponsible. Read the RS's description of itself, its aims and priorities, to see hypocrisy in action.

Nov 28, 2013 at 3:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterSteve Jones

@ Chandra

I think you are a bit confused about what a model is and is not for, and also about the relative complexity of the Poyry work versus that attempted by climate psyentists.

Poyry set out a range of assumptions for various shale gas scenarios, and then processed the results to see what emerged. This is a standard strategic planning approach, intended to illuminate what might become of D if A and / or B and / or C eventuate.

None of the scenarios is a prediction of what will happen. None is any better than the assumptions, which you always list to be clear about what you do and do not know. When an oil company develops investment scenarios based around oil being $50, $100 or $250 a barrel, none of these is a prediction or a forecast. They are just what-ifs.

A model of the climate in 100 years' time is more complex than this by several orders of magnitude. Firstly, it has itself to model energy price more reliably than any energy company would attempt, i.e. it has to do or assume its own Poyry study but over a period twice as long as Poyry has considered and ten times longer than any commercial enterprise would consider. I think you are saying you agree that this is not possible? If so, the entire energy industry agrees with you - nobody does it.

A climate model must also depict accurately at least two further variables, however, i.e. human population and technology advances. It must then draw all these together, and it must also get all the other basic assumptions correct.

For an idea of how easy this is to do, imagine you're the 1913 equivalent of a latter-day climate psyentist. You are, perhaps, a geography lecturer at a mediocre provincial university (this would be the direct equivalent of someone like UEA's Phil Jones). Now, ask yourself how accurate an estimate of 2013 population, technology, and energy consumption you could produce. How much nuclear power would a 1913 third-rate university hack anticipate to be in use in 2013? What would he estimate the world's 2013 population to be? Would his model assume Malthusian starvation, or not? Would it assume eugenics as universal policy, or not? Would he insist on immediate action based on his model?

Poyry's model is not intended to be accurate. It's merely intended to be indicative should various things occur; if shale gas develops there might be X jobs. What it does not purport to be is a reliable forecast on whose basis follies like the Climate Change Act should be enacted.

The contrast with hubristic ecofascist post-normal science could not really be greater. These do claim to be reliable and they do insist, with fascist shrillness, that people must die now because, well, just because.

Hope that helps.

Nov 28, 2013 at 3:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka

eSpliff: Any of those you mention I'd prefer to represent me than yourself. Though we might agree on one or two things, the dramatic incompetence you display in so many crucial areas of judgment would make Wayne Rooney a 'safe pair of hands' by comparison. Others though are free to nominate you for next time and put in a good word to Lord Lawson himself, who I'm sure in any case will have been bowled over by your charm offensive on so many pages here.

Nov 28, 2013 at 3:23 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Drake

While “science” relies more on obfuscation and lies, backed up by journalists supporting politicians with nefarious intent upon global control, rather than evidence and logic in spite of self-appointed authority then we are surely doomed.

While the main public broadcaster espouses a policy of refusing to allow revelation of evidence opposing the corporate opinion – indeed, of actively publishing known untruths as truth – merely emphasises our fate.

Nov 28, 2013 at 3:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

Could anybody please remind me when was the last time the Royal Society did actually anything positive for the progress of science?

Nov 28, 2013 at 4:22 PM | Registered Commenteromnologos

I admit great disappointment that the meeting took place secretly. I would have preferred for the meeting not to have taken place at all until the RS accepted an open and transparent process. Acceding to their demand should have been inconceivable rather than merely reluctant. The meeting should have been open, first and foremost, because it should have been open.

Nov 28, 2013 at 4:55 PM | Registered CommenterSimon Hopkinson

Justice4Rinka, so Poyrys did a set of "what ifs". Not predictions or forecasts, but "what ifs". WTF is the difference? Anyway, you're saying they put some initial conditions into their terribly accurate economic model and asked it not to predict the outcome but to tell them "what if" ... and it said household gas prices would be 8% cheaper in 2050. 8% mind you, not 10% or 5%! And you credulous folks believe them (except presumably those who think prices will collapse). If they had said gas prices "might be slightly cheaper" they would have had more credibility. The idea that a group who proclaim loudly that models are rubbish could embrace the results of an economic model 30 years out is ludicrous - for anyone who doesn't fall for your "nothing but fossil fuels" mantra.

You characterization of climate models as if they take any notice of energy prices and the like is risible. I guess you have never heard of Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP4.5 etc) because you are so busy with you fingers in your ears chanting "climate models are rubbish".

Nov 28, 2013 at 4:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterChandra

To all those who have criticised the RS for the exclusion of the press - I can think of one excellent reason for so doing. Here in the States (at least), when the press is in attendance, there is a strong tendency to speak in "sound bites" rather than in coherent threads, and certainly that does not advance communication. A request not to discuss the proceeding after the fact, however, does not seem defensible.

I suspect that in the event, the parties were soliloquising alternately, and imagining that they were conversing. I would appreciate an assessment from an attendee as to whether there was actually any dialogue.

Nov 28, 2013 at 5:12 PM | Registered CommenterHaroldW

Harold, I don't think that anyone wanted it to be turned into a dog and pony show. But, no-one has mentioned the (apparently magical) Chatham House Rules, no-one has said what the terms were, no-one has said nuffink.

What's going on?

Nov 28, 2013 at 5:20 PM | Registered Commenterjohanna

Certainly the claim that the Royal Society, one of the great historic institutions of science, demanded a secret conference at which to discuss one of the most momentous science issues of our, is a bit of humor?

Nov 28, 2013 at 5:22 PM | Unregistered Commenterhunter

I can't attest to the Science of the Royal Society, but their politics are top notch.

Nov 28, 2013 at 5:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterCurious George

There was a Society led by Sir Paul Nurse
who thought Lord Lawson and sceptics a curse
to keep them at bay
he agreed to meet them for one day
but in secret, so he just came off looking much worse.

Nov 28, 2013 at 5:42 PM | Registered Commenterlapogus

Them snot noses will have to confess or explain in the not too distant future. Tricky that will be, look forward to it.

Nov 28, 2013 at 6:05 PM | Unregistered Commentermikeworst

"Please note this is not a criticism of anyone not using their real name, here or anywhere else,"

Yes it it.

Will you just eff-off with your obsession with posters real names.

How do we know you're Richard Drake?
It could be a sock puppet persona you've invented to infiltrate us Realists while you feed important intelligence back to Warmist Central. Turning up to a meeting and calling yourself Richard doesn't prove anything.
Lets see a scanned copy of your passport for proof (although that could be fraudulently applied for).

Nov 28, 2013 at 6:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterNial

Lest we forget ...this is the RS of ubiquitous Tv-experienced Nurse. The only reason to have a secret meeting (not even announced) is if the esteemed scientists are perfectly aware of their ignorance, inability to understand and general lack of anything that would make them look good in public, for all the climate change matters.

You tell me one single damned scientific endeavour where scientists are afraid of any former Chancellor of the Exchequer.

This is the Gallipoli of Nurse et al. Or shall we say the Hidden Charge of the no-Lights-upstairs Brigade.

Nov 28, 2013 at 6:46 PM | Registered Commenteromnologos

"Take nobody's word for it"................


It has to be said, that, I am a tad flummoxed, why all the cloak and daggers?


Yet hide they do.


Can it be true, nay surely not!


Heralded.

The prominent ranked, famous, the learned, the great and the eminent of the Royal Society are running scared no less, flying from a disparate though profoundly sage and determined knot of men.

The result never in question thought they,
"they are no match for the calibre of our egghead genius, we will conquer!"

Now, guns spiked and silenced by the raggedy usurpers!
Who came armed, only with their intellection but protected from the forces of the scientific Mafia establishment - by the shield of truth............................... and a single sling.

Is Nigel's middle name David?

Nov 28, 2013 at 6:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

I find it profoundly sad that an institution where, in the past, any scientist would aspire to membership has now reached a point where any scientist worth his salt would be embarrassed to be associated with it.

The very essence of science is forgotten and politics are dominant.

I am sure that there are many FRSs who are deeply embarrassed by their Institution’s stance on human caused global warming. Perhaps now is the time for them to make their voices heard?

Nov 28, 2013 at 6:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterDrJohnGalan

The Royal Society Fellows insisted that the meeting be held under the Chatham House Rule.

The Chatham House Rule reads as follows:

When a meeting, or part thereof, is held under the Chatham House Rule, participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed.

Nov 28, 2013 at 6:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterBruce

Of course they knew that silence would be in their interest. they might be bad climate scientists but they are not fools. I am surprised that Nigel Lawson accepted that requirement. He could have refused and the Royal Society would have gone against their own rules and would have had very bad publicity.

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:02 PM | Unregistered Commenterferdinand

Dr John, utter tosh.

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterChandra

What's going on?
Nov 28, 2013 at 5:20 PM | Registered Commenterjohanna

Yes indeed. What is going on?

Very strange GWPF evidently agreeing to secrecy.

So what was and what was not secret?

Not the fact that the meeting took place.
Not the identity of the GWPF representatives present.
Not the fact that the RS members apparently believe that the output of models is evidence.
What else?

But maybe Lord Lawson agreed with a good understanding of how the RS's insistence on secrecy would be interpreted by the world at large?

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:14 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

Let's stay positive -there could be something good coming out of this.

I can't wait to hear about the secret meeting held by NASA on Mars exploration, secret as none of the scientists was sure if they had an argument against special guest, Allan Greenspan.

Or perhaps it'll be for the WHO to invoke the Chatham House Rules when they talk pandemics with Bill Clinton.

Exciting times ahead!

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:18 PM | Registered Commenteromnologos

I think that is highly desirable, DrJohnGalan (6:54 PM). But perhaps we can at least hope that a good few more fellows will put aside some serious time, be that from gardening or their own research, in order to dig more deeply into what is known and what is conjecture in our understanding of the climate system. This event in the House of Lords, and the tawdry letter from Nurse to Lawson that preceded it, should surely be raising eyebrows in some and alarm bells in others. We shall see.

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:25 PM | Registered CommenterJohn Shade

"I find it profoundly sad that an institution where, in the past, any scientist would aspire to membership has now reached a point where any scientist worth his salt would be embarrassed to be associated with it."
Not "utter tosh" but certainly over egging the pudding- although I agree that any scientist worth his NaCl would be embarrassed to be associated with its stance on global warming.

"The very essence of science is forgotten and politics are dominant."
Not without precedent in the history of the RS.

"I am sure that there are many FRSs who are deeply embarrassed by their Institution’s stance on human caused global warming. Perhaps now is the time for them to make their voices heard?"
The silence will speak volumes and theses on the sociology of science will eventually be written.

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterSkeptical Chymist

Nial: I asked some questions. If you don't want to answer them, no problem. The question about my own identity has been asked before. Perhaps the best answer was from Rhoda a year ago:

I've met Richard Drake, and if he is a teenage girl from Slough I can only say he had a most effective disguise. And of course he knows my real name, if he was paying attention when I gave it.

As well as Rhoda, Andrew, Josh, Barry, Geoff, Jonathan and many others have met me in the last four years. 'Frenemies' like Barry Gardiner and Roger Harrabin also either knew me at school or hang out with some of my closest friends from that era. It really isn't hard to find out who I am.

Matt Ridley and Richard Tol are also easy referents to known people in the climate scene. I was asking a question about them and the other people at the GWPF-RS meeting. That was it. Let's not divert the thread into some very unfruitful areas that I - and I'm sure others - are not interested in here. My questions, having read the widespread criticism of the Royal Society for demanding secrecy of this meeting, are I believe both relevant and interesting. Even if you disagree there's no need to attack me for asking. That's what warmists do with honest questions, is it not.

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:44 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Drake

Can anyone tell me what the figure in the cartoon is saying?

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterGummerMustGo

They sold out their old motto of 'take no bodies word for it' and replaced it with 'trust me I am scientists'
and elected Prince Andrew , an idiot , as member .
The chase the money and that still means 'the cause '

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterKNR

@Schrodinger's Cat

"28gate" was nothing to do with the Met Office. This monicker refers to the publication of a list of attendees at a meeting at the BBC in 2006. As you can see from that, nobody from the Met Office was involved.

But yes, the reactions here do seem to be similar, because any meeting which can be deemed "secret" automatically seems more exciting to those who weren't involved!

AndyL is correct that Lawson's Spectator article doesn't actually say he was "prevented from telling more by a demand for secrecy imposed by the Royal Society fellows themselves". It just says the press were not present.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:02 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Betts

If I am involved in a scietific dispute with someone, and that person, instead of citing the facts or the data, proceeds to attack me personally, then I am confident that I am winning the argument.
If you have experienced a hurricane, typhoon, snow storm, tornado, volcanic eruption, etc. common sense would tell you that the forces and motions involved in such phenomena are enormous and beyond human control.
The notion that atmosoheric CO2 as a minor constituent of the atmosphere can control those forces, is absurd. Even more absurd, is the notion that the human contribution to atmospheric CO2, which is trivial compared to its natural sources and sinks, can be significannt to weather and climate.Succintly, one should conclude: "A fraud is a fraud, is a fraud".

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterDr. Martin Hertzberg

I know full well that feeding trolls is singularly unproductive, but I can't resist!
Chandra: I suspect you are not up for taking advice, but I will try anyway.
"It is better to be thought a fool, than to speak and remove any doubts."
A former NZ Prime Minister, advising a new sitting member of the House: " Just breathe through your nose until you know what you are talking about!"

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlexander K

Richard Drake:
"It could be that some models are better than others. But I'm no expert."
There are some 35 'models' globally - getting the programme data is like drawing teeth - many have found.
Prof Michael Beenstock of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem gave a talk last night at the IEA on testing models. His research team are working through them. So fat they have tested six. All failed any kind of test disastrously. They are are continuing, but see remark earlier.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhilip Foster

This is a difficult one;
A secret meeting does allow "a free and frank exchange of views" but runs contrary to the ethos of "Science" which requires open debate and tests of scientific theories. I believe that the GWPF team went ahead against their ethical reluctance in the hope that they could inform and educate the learned members of the RS in the realities of the worlds climate, future, past and present as well as the value of empiracal data in any scientific debate. Surely such eminent scientist must acknowledge the fact that all the climate models fail the basic test required to validate them ! I do hope a full acount of the exchanges will emerge at some point. I still think that Sir Paul Nurse is not flavour of the month in the RS for " dropping the Fellows in it".

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoss Lea

omnologos (4.22pm)

Could anybody please remind me when was the last time the Royal Society did actually anything positive for the progress of science?
I don’t think they’re actually meant to do anything. They are meant to be something though - like a symbol of Britain’s proud tradition of science and freedom of thought, or something.
As you said so well at 6.46PM, what kind of scientist is afraid of a former Chancellor of the Exchequer?
Surely Richard Tol or His Grace via his gapevine can at least tell us whether Chatham House rules or other oaths of secrecy were invoked? or a Hippocratic Ode to a Sick Planet? Or maybe something Masonic?

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:13 PM | Registered Commentergeoffchambers

Martin A:

But maybe Lord Lawson agreed with a good understanding of how the RS's insistence on secrecy would be interpreted by the world at large?

Spot on. That I'm sure of. Some of the other questions raised aren't so easy, eg HaroldW:

To all those who have criticised the RS for the exclusion of the press - I can think of one excellent reason for so doing. Here in the States (at least), when the press is in attendance, there is a strong tendency to speak in "sound bites" rather than in coherent threads, and certainly that does not advance communication. A request not to discuss the proceeding after the fact, however, does not seem defensible.

Part of why I said the second phrase here (12:59 PM):

It should have been livestreamed on the Internet of course, with textual/blog follow ups. And one day, I believe, this debate, of such import to the public worldwide, will be that open.

The 'textual/blog follow ups' would I believe need to be different from the free-for-all that some may still consider 'state of the art' for now. Do The Science of Doom or Climate Dialogue give some clues of a future pattern where FRSes and others will be ready to throw themselves into the online world on such a vital matter of public policy?

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:13 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Drake

The Royal Society, the National Academies of Sciences for the US, Sweden, Norway, Germany, etc. have good reason to wasn't secrecy:

Empirical evidence for sixty-eight years (2013 - 1945 = 68 yrs) of deception disguised as consensus science is about to be published for all the world to see.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:17 PM | Unregistered CommenterOliver K. Manuel

Richard Betts (8:02 PM)

But yes, the reactions here do seem to be similar,[to reactions to the BBC’s secret seminar] because any meeting which can be deemed "secret" automatically seems more exciting to those who weren't involved!
You know that’s not the reason we’re angry. The BBC used licence payers money to pay Barristers to stop us knowing how they come to their decisions. The Royal Society gets taxpayers’ money (£30 Million? or am I making that up? It’ something I sometimes do with big numbers) - not for doing anything, but just for being one of the world’s most prestigious scientific societies.
We understand the reasons for banning the press, and I for one am glad that Fiona and Damian weren’t there to put their spin on it. But we want to know what they said, and what they heard. Is that too much to ask? Don't you want to know what was said?

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:25 PM | Registered Commentergeoffchambers

Oliver K. Manuel

Ignore the Troll: empty vessels make the most noise and this one is a veritable vacuum

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoss Lea

Philip Foster: Thank you, I'm sorry I missed that at the IEA. Keep me posted.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:29 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Drake

Geoff Chambers:

Hippocratic Ode to a Sick Planet?

'First do no harm' makes a powerful case for ode before code. But is the planet sick? Hans Rosling has presented the most balanced and evidence-based view on that, outside the question of CO2 emissions. And the jury should be kept out on CO2, including cycle and sensitivity, for 10-20 years, before we diagnose any sickness at all, in my view, let alone try treatment. But we are where Societies like the Royal say we are, to a degree (or two). Thanks for the fertile phrase.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:38 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Drake

The warmist side are very good at shouting : "climate scare story of the day" & hyp & hype and hype
..yet when it comes to the science they whisper ?
..that is a bit of a strange manner.

- all they need to do is have a big 2-3 hour debate live on TV against eminent skeptics & bang they'd "surely" totally defeat them once & for all.. and then they'd free to continue their campaign to de-carbon dioxide the economy unhindered.
... Yet they hide, seeming to have a policy of "never debate skeptics we might lose"

- It's often easier to judge people by what they do, rather than what they say.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:40 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

@geoffchambers

I'd have a passing interest in some the conversations there (eg. was there a discussion on the range of climate sensitivity that should be considered, and did Richards Tol and Lindzen agree with each other on this?) and as far as I can see, there's no reason why Richard T or any other attendee shouldn't tell us about it.

There doesn't actually seem to be anything to suggest that the RS are trying to stop attendees from publicly discussing the content of the meeting.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:59 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Betts

So hang on GWPF was supposed to be meeting with the Royal Society experts but seems the show is being run by Grantham Institute people ? or is it just overlap ?

- I quoted a GranthamsImperial tweet from 26thNov "Prof Stocker is asked "Reasoned evidence isn't breaking through -- is it time to become unreasonable?"
@Richard Drake pointed me to a Steve McIntyre article from Jan 12, 2012 where he showed Stocker had connived to get a privacy clause backdated into IPCC documents to stop some discussion Steve had started.. a clause which ran counter to the previous multiple ones calling for openness in the process.

What' this #granthropocene tag ? they seem to be starting some super-alarmist hype
(Grantham + Anthropocene ?)

Nov 28, 2013 at 9:12 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Richard Betts
I’m glad you agree that the details of the discussion would be interesting to know. I’d go further and say that a transcription of the meeting could be a key document in discussion of Britain’s energy and climate change policy.

I’m sure you’d agree that for an academic of the standing of Professor Lindzen to cross the Atlantic and see his contribution to a high-level debate in the Upper House of our Parliament censored would invite ridicule of our political system.

This is no longer just about climate change. It’s a debate about how our political institutions work. You can’t go to a meeting at the French or US Senate and say “I’d prefer what I say here not to be repeated, if you don’t mind” because the US and France are democracies. Is Britain?

Nov 28, 2013 at 9:13 PM | Registered Commentergeoffchambers

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