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« Fewer climate movies for the natives | Main | Beddington honoured »
Thursday
Jul312014

Greens try to get scientists removed from select committee

Caroline Lucas has been using her holidays to go after Graham Stringer for having the temerity to dissent from the alarmist line on climate change and in particular the Energy and Climate Change Committee's report on AR5. 

The good lady has written to Ed Miliband, asking him what he is going to do about this appalling situation, in effect demanding that one of only two scientists on the Energy and Climate Change Committee be removed.

Dear Ed,

I’m writing with regard to yesterday’s report from the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee on climate science and the 5th assessment report from the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

I’m sure that we will both welcome the Committee’s unambiguous endorsement of the integrity of the science and the compelling case for urgent action to cut carbon emissions and secure a global climate deal.

However, in light of your criticism of the Prime Minister for having climate deniers in his Cabinet, and your comments about the harm caused to our country by delay and dither on climate change, it was especially disappointing to see Graham Stringer, a senior Labour MP, join forces with Conservative MP Peter Lilley in an attempt to undermine the findings.

As you will have seen, they set out their views in a statement rejecting the Committee’s report. They claim that it is “hard to justify” the IPPC’s conclusion that it is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.

They also regurgitate the so-called global warming ‘pause’ argument to back up their stance, despite repeated clarification from the Met Office and others that this is a basic misunderstanding of the science, the difference between a prediction and a projection, and the effect of heat uptake by oceans on changes in surface temperature.

Whilst their words may be chosen meticulously, their intention is crystal clear: to undermine the scientific case for rapid, drastic action to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, which is now stronger than ever.

This seems at odds with your challenge to the Prime Minister on his lack of climate leadership at the height of the winter floods. In PMQs, you argued that it was unacceptable for David Cameron to appoint Ministers who don’t ‘believe’ in man-made climate change. You rightly called for climate change to be treated as a national security priority – at home and abroad – to protect the homes, businesses and livelihoods of our constituents.

Yet now we have a senior Labour MP casting doubt and confusion on the issue of climate change. This is exactly what you condemned as undermining of action to properly protect the British people from the threats of climate change.

You were applauded when you told the Conservatives to ‘get real’ on climate change. But what message does it send when one of just a handful of Labour MPs chosen to sit on the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee is an outspoken advocate of dither and delay, engaging in persistent attempts to thwart action on climate change?

As you know, I am a strong supporter of efforts to rebuild cross party consensus on the need for an ambitious response to climate change based on science and equity – domestically and internationally. Like other backbench MPs, I work frequently with politicians from across the political spectrum on these issues and will continue to do so.

That’s why it’s particularly disappointing to see a Labour MP, in a position of influence, actively trying to prevent the UK from taking the action required to avoid the worst impacts of climate change – and indeed to secure the benefits of our country leading a rapid transition to a zero carbon economy.

Of course, there are many aspects of climate change science and policy that would benefit from a great deal more debate, for example the compatibility of the UK developing a whole new shale gas industry, however well regulated, with our international commitment to keep climate change below 2 degrees. But attempting to mislead the public on the scientific evidence that climate change is caused by human activity, and will have devastating impacts if urgent action is not taken to reduce our carbon emissions, is deeply irresponsible.

I would be grateful if you could clarify Labour’s position on these aspects of climate science, your views on Graham Stringer’s comments and his role on the Committee, and any actions you will be taking as a result.

Thank you in anticipation of your reply.

 

Caroline Lucas MP

I think I'm right in saying that the Labour party now chooses select committee members by secret ballot, so one assumes that this will go precisely nowhere.

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Reader Comments (72)

[Snip. Venting]

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:01 PM | Unregistered Commenterturnedoutnice

Her time has passed.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterIvor Ward

The roots of fascism coming out to play.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterJack Cowper

The arrogance of that woman beggars belief.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterCheshirered

She stops short of saying, "Burn the heretics! Burn them!"; but only just.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterLjh

Eco-terrorist.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterDrcrinum

"Of course, there are many aspects of climate change science and policy that would benefit from a great deal more debate, for example the compatibility of the UK developing a whole new shale gas industry"

Because despite all the attempts by Greenpeace, FoE, Occupy and their fellow terrorists in the Green Party the public to get the public involved in the debate by creating disruption and damaging private property the public have been sadly lacking in interest.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterSadButMadLad

Caroline Lucas Party obtained less than 1% of the popular vote at the last election and she sees fit to undermine democratic processes?

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterStacey

"the difference between a prediction and a projection"

Does she know? If so, she can explain it to me, as even William Connolley seems to have trouble...

Stoat

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:28 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

The BBC's Matt McGrath has been wiriting about Stringer & Lilley here:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-28531091

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterJack Cowper

Dear Caroline

What does 'unambiguous' mean?

Yours

Ed

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterH2O: the miracle molecule

One might have thought that the dear lady had been a member of the House long enough to understand parliamentary procedure. Members of select committees are chosen by ballot for the specific reason of avoiding undue influence from party leaders. Thankfully, as the Greens only have one MP, she is not able to impose wider control and if the good people of Brighton come to their senses, even that small amount can be removed.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterBloke down the pub

9-2 isn't a big enough win for the faux-greens?

Alas there is no sign of anyone in parliament taking any notice of skeptics and they will continue that way until the first power cuts arrive, the real costs of green taxes are made aware to the electorate (rather than disguised in the tariffs) or the temperature drops. I applaud Lilley/Stringers futile and thankless cross-party gesture nevertheless.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

According to Lucas Ed Miliband had criticised the Prime Minister for having "climate deniers" in his cabinet. How do you deny a climate? Presumably Lucas would be happier with cabinet ministers who affirm the climate. What exactly would that involve?

Lucas also mentioned the difference between a "prediction" and a "projection" but did not bother to explain it. Does she think that our climate change and energy generation policies should be based on "predictions" or on "projections" and what difference would it make?

Since Caroline Lucas did a BA and a PhD in English literature she could, presumably, have written her letter in English rather than Green gobbledygook if she had wished to do so.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoy

Remind me of Caroline Lucas' scientific credentials.

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:53 PM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

[Snip - venting]

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterSteve Y

Sorry Bish for calling Lucas a *******. It was not appropriate. Perhaps I should have suggested that she might consider a part time career making lampshades from the tanned epidermis of 'Deniers'.

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:15 PM | Unregistered Commenterturnedoutnice

Sorry your Grace. I can only proffer the excuse that I have lived in Brighton all my life and the Greens considerably vex me.

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterSteve Y

In reality what Caroline Lucas writes is irrelevant, we all have our wish lists. However I for one would be extremely interested in the content of any response from "2008 Ed".

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:22 PM | Registered CommenterGreen Sand

Lucas: "...urgent action to cut carbon emissions ..."

"Whilst their words may be chosen meticulously, ......." Unlike mine......

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Public

Dear Caroline

Unfortunately, Stringer and Lilley retain their cognitive faculties which means they have you and me at a significant disadvantage.

Yours

ED
(Composed and signed by AI Machines Inc)
PS do you think I look like Tim Tim Nice but Dim?

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterH2O: the miracle molecule

They also regurgitate the so-called global warming ‘pause’ argument to back up their stance, despite repeated clarification from the Met Office and others that this is a basic misunderstanding of the science, the difference between a prediction and a projection, and the effect of heat uptake by oceans on changes in surface temperature.

I wonder if Caroline Lucas knows what the Met Office clarification means? They basically said 'We didn't predict anything and the heat must be hiding in a place we haven't looked at'. Which isn't a strong position to take at all.

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterGareth

Steve Y

Your now snipped comment made me laugh. So thank you for that.

Humour is the best antidote to these prats.

My MP is the Right Honourable Nick Clegg. If you put him and Caroline in a dark room the light bulb would still have the highest IQ.

Peace

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterH2O: the miracle molecule

I did enjoy this paragraph:

They also regurgitate the so-called global warming ‘pause’ argument to back up their stance, despite repeated clarification from the Met Office and others that this is a basic misunderstanding of the science, the difference between a prediction and a projection, and the effect of heat uptake by oceans on changes in surface temperature.

Are the Met Office really indulging in casuistry of that sort, suggesting that we oiks are failing to grasp their asserted difference between a prediction and a projection? (which they had not previously mentioned). And I suppose the effect of heat uptake by oceans etc is part of the Trenberthian assertion that its all gone into the ocean, for which there is not a jot of evidence as far as I know. But how times change. I recall from the Climategate (Stolen!) emails one scientist commenting that if there was a pause (of any significance) they would be strung up - words to that effect. Now the new priests simply gloss over discrepancies. And people like Lucas are silly enough to fall for it. The man in the soutane must be right, right?

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:40 PM | Unregistered Commenterbill

"the difference between a prediction and a projection"

Jul 31, 2014 at 1:28 PM | Registered Commenter jamesp

In climate science, a prediction is a projection that came true. If it doesn't come true, it remains a projection. </cynicism>

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikeC

Lucas is an expert at regurgitation. She brings up the same 2 degrees mantra every time. The equivalent of carrots in normal people.

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterVictoria Sponge

English Literature graduate objects to Chemistry graduate having opinions in MPs' science committee.

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:59 PM | Unregistered Commenterrotationalfinestructure

Turnedoutnice.

In your comment you call Lucas a *******.

I'm confused. If you had called her a **** or even a ****** ****, I would have understood His Grace snipping.

Could it be that the noun in question could be expressed as a **** ***?

Alternatively, would it clarify things if you had said Lucas is a complete *******?

Jul 31, 2014 at 2:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterKeith

Regarding prediction vs projection, Richard Feynman reportedly said of String Theorists:

"They don't make predictions, they make excuses!"

Perfect description of Climate 'Scientists' methinks.

Jul 31, 2014 at 3:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterRayJ

... and from the many reports of "Climate Scientists say..." It is apparent that 97% of their projections are of the psychological variety.

Jul 31, 2014 at 3:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterRayJ

How did this letter come to light so quickly - was it leaked? Never mind Ms lucas can use her Eng.Lit degree to write a poem about it. I do hope that Miliband does not become PM because most of this energy mess is down to him.

Jul 31, 2014 at 3:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterTrefor Jones

H2O: the miracle molecule said:

My MP is the Right Honourable Nick Clegg. If you put him and Caroline in a dark room the light bulb would still have the highest IQ.

And that's with the light bulb switched off!! (dark room, you see. But if I were in a dark room with CL I'd want to keep the light off - and not let anything develop!).

Jul 31, 2014 at 3:59 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

"the light bulb would still have the highest IQ." No it wouldn't because they would use one of those stupid, low energy, rubbish eco light bulbs. It would be a draw I'm afraid.

Jul 31, 2014 at 4:05 PM | Unregistered Commenterson of mulder

Ms Lucas would do well to have a look at what the Met Office actually say about heat disappearing into the ocean in their paper "Implications for Projections":


whilst the second report suggests that the recent pause in surface warming may, in part, be due to internal variability in the oceans and how heat is taken up below the ocean surface.

I have a basic understanding of science. I have an even better understanding of words. The use of "may" and "in part" tell me that the Met Office have no clue where the missing global warming has gone. Ms Lucas seems to know more than they do.

Jul 31, 2014 at 4:21 PM | Unregistered Commenterclovis marcus

Hi Keith, the noun in question is deducible from my following statement as to a suggested second career which could be conducted in a future Bergen-Belsen or Ravensbruck. However, a new Dachau is probably the best fit, there to incarcerate the deniers, the new untermenschen who shall have no rights in our Society.

Jul 31, 2014 at 4:23 PM | Unregistered Commenterturnedoutnice

English Literature graduate complains to Philosophy, Politics and Economics graduate about Chemistry graduate having opinions in MPs' science committee.

Jul 31, 2014 at 4:40 PM | Unregistered Commenterrotationalfinestructure

My daughter went to the same very expensive Girls School here in Malvern, as Caroline Lucas.
She now lives in Brighton and voted for Lucas, but never again, as "Steve Y"(above) puts it, the "Greens vex her".
In fact she and her neighbours had to take the "Green" council to the High Court, where they won their case !
To say the Greens are highly unpopular there, would be an understatement.

Jul 31, 2014 at 4:48 PM | Unregistered Commentertoad

I am sure Uncle Putin will be proud of Dr Caroline Lucas for her contribution to the Russian energy industry.

See what a degree and PhD in English can achieved!

Jul 31, 2014 at 4:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterCharmingQuark

' .... our international commitment to keep climate change below 2 degrees.'

Interesting choice of phrase. Not temperature, then? How can you keep 'a change' below something?

Jul 31, 2014 at 5:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarbara

[Snip...venting]. There...saved you the trouble. LOL

Jul 31, 2014 at 5:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterjimB

At one time Caroline Lucas used to have herself introduced as "Dr" Caroline Lucas - Climate Change expert - I know, I had the misfortune to attend one of her meetings and realised she knew absolutely nothing about even the basics of scientific principles.

So I checked out exactly what her qualifications are.

She does have a PhD.

She earned her PhD from the University of Exeter in 1989 with a thesis entitled

"Writing for Women: a study of woman as reader in Elizabethan romance."

The arrogance of this woman is frankly unbelievable.

Jul 31, 2014 at 5:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterDoug UK

From Peter Sisson's memoirs 'When One Door Closes', 2011, p299.

'I was on duty on News 24 and it had been arranged for me to ¬interview the leader of the Green Party, Caroline Lucas. She clearly expected, as do most environmental activists, what I call a ‘free hit’ — to be allowed to say her piece without challenge.
I began, good naturedly, by observing that the climate didn’t seem to be playing ball at the moment, and that we were having a particularly cold winter while carbon emissions were powering ahead.
Miss Lucas reacted as if I’d ¬physically molested her. She was outraged. It was no job of the BBC — the BBC! — to ask questions like that. Didn’t I realise that there could be no argument over the science?
I persisted with a few simple observations of fact, such as there appeared to have been no warming for ten years, in contradiction of all the alarmist computer models.
A listener from one of the sceptical climate-change websites noted that ‘Lucas was virtually apoplectic and demanding to know how the BBC could be making such ¬comments. Sissons came back that his role as a journalist was always to review all sides. Lucas finished with a veiled warning, to which Sissons replied with an “Ooh!”’
A week after this interview, I went into work and picked up my mail from my pigeon hole. Among the envelopes was a small Jiffy Bag, which I opened. It contained a substantial amount of faeces wrapped in several sheets of toilet paper.'

Also reproduced in the Daily Mail's serialised extracts, below

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1350206/BBC-propaganda-machine-climate-change-says-Peter-Sissons.html

Jul 31, 2014 at 5:44 PM | Registered CommenterPharos

What an absurd women Lucas is. Every unthinking platitude about 'climate change' mouthed with such certainty, such ignorance, such harpiness.

Yet she expects to be taken seriously as a saviour of mankind.

It is truly dismaying that such obvious, self-important bird-brains are anywhere near the centres of power. More dismaying still that they still insist that their shrill idiocies be listened to.

It is properly telling not just she attempts to obfuscate between 'projections' and 'predictions' but that she can't resist writing about climate change deniers.

Jul 31, 2014 at 6:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterAgouts

Sadly Graham Stringer is now 64, i.e. unlikely to stand in the next election.

A Labour "denier" is a massive problem for watermelons, who just love to portray deniers as Tories/UKIP with either ignorance or vested interests.

Jul 31, 2014 at 6:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikky

And yet swivel-eyed Lucas is a paragon of moderation and humility compared to most 'greens'.

Jul 31, 2014 at 7:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterJake Haye

I imagine Miliband will be grateful for Caroline's support in furthering the climate change scam.
His promise to the voter of a 20 month price freeze and a referral to the Competition and Markets Authority (already made) gives no indication of future prices. Meeting CO2 targets he set is demanding and requires building more renewables with contracted output prices (subsidies).
With changes to the generating pool will he be able to restrict price rises. Can Caroline Flint work the miracle?
Dieter Helm (dieterhelm.co.uk/nodk/1362) points out all the pitfalls in changing the electricity generating/distribution system and cost of new capacity.
PFI only builds for reward, without a profit motive who will put up the money.
Being a left-winger is Miliband considering Public ownership of the Big Six - no profit then.

Jul 31, 2014 at 8:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterShieldsman

Dear Ed,
As a well known climate loon on the environmental circuit (weddings,bar mitzvahs and children's parties) I think it's bang out of order that one of your lot has the temerity to go against all things global warmary. It's just not on!
If you don't do anything about it I'm writing to BBC Watchdog or the Media show or something if I can just find my green ink pen.
I'm so cwoss. I was only just the other day speaking to my friend in some trendy bar in Brighton and she said how awful the whole thing was.
So what are you going to do about it ED? Huh?
ED?
God you're so shallow ED and I wish I'd never been born.
GOD - I HATE THE WORLD! SOOOO MUCH!!!!!!

Caroline Lucas aged 13 and a half million. Somewhere in Brighton, Earth, Space. Million and wunty wun.

Jul 31, 2014 at 8:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaul

I remember being sat outside a cafe in George Street in Hove where on that day Lucas was campaigning before she was elected.

A 2 minute conversation was enough to satisfy me that she has a big heart but a tiny brain.

Jul 31, 2014 at 8:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterRB

So, Caroline Lucas accuses science trained Lilley & Stringer of a "basic misunderstanding of the science" with reference to the hiatus. Does she not know that observational data doesn't need 'science' to speak! Is she really that clueless? On the evidence of her rabid utterings, the answer must be "yes".

Jul 31, 2014 at 8:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterIlma

The bottom line

'We're seeing greenhouse gas emissions rise under this government.' Caroline Lucas

Jul 31, 2014 at 8:57 PM | Registered CommenterPharos

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