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« Moonshine 2 | Main | Renewables cannot sustain civilisation »
Thursday
Aug282014

Of orcs, goblins and climate change think tanks

As afficionados of The Lord of the Rings will no doubt know, the dark lord Sauron created orcs as corrupt mirror images of the elves. He created goblins in similar fashion, with dwarves in mind. This thought came to mind when readers pointed me to the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit, a new think tank on the block here in the UK, which I can't help but see as the goblin version of the GWPF.

Set up by a group of green charitable foundations, the ECIU is to be run by our old friend Richard Black, not quite fresh from his previous role as an 'impartial' journalist at the BBC. The list of advisers is also interesting, featuring a dazzling array of well-known names and not a few vested interests as well.

  • Rushanara Ali, MP for Bethnal Green & Bow
  • Richard Benyon,  MP for Newbury
  • The Rt Rev Richard Chartres,  Bishop of London
  • Dr Fiona Godlee, Editor in Chief, British Medical Journal
  • Professor Michael Grubb, Professor of International Energy and Climate Change Policy, UCL
  • Professor Joanna Haigh,  Co-Director, Grantham Institute, Imperial College London
  • Marylyn Haines Evans,  Public Affairs Chair, National Federation of Women's Institutes
  • Martin Horwood,  MP for Cheltenham
  • Lord Howard of Lympne
  • Robin Lustig,  Journalist and Broadcaster
  • Rear Admiral Neil Morisetti, Former Commander, UK Maritime Forces
  • Lord Oxburgh of Liverpool
  • Lord Puttnam of Queensgate
  • The Earl of Selborne
  • Dr Emily Shuckburgh, Head of Open Oceans, British Antarctic Survey
  • Graham Stuart, MP for Beverley and Holderness
  • Sir Crispin Tickell, Former Ambassador to the United Nations
  • Dr Camilla Toulmin, Director, IIED
  • Lord Turner of Ecchinswell

They describe their mission as follows:

What we can do is to support communicators of all kinds in ensuring that both the evidence and the holes in it are conveyed as clearly and accurately as possible, and so put the debates we need to have in their full context.

It will be interesting to see how much impact they make, as they will presumably be recycling the same stuff as all the other green groups and crony capitalists.

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Reader Comments (29)

Lord Puttnam of Queensgate - is that the luvvie? If so, an obvious expert.

On the whole a useful list of people to avoid.

Aug 28, 2014 at 9:45 AM | Registered Commenterdavidchappell

It's "worse than we thought" :)

This is their thinking: when the propaganda is already at 11 they need a new amplifier that goes up to 12.

Spinal Tap - these go to 11

Aug 28, 2014 at 9:48 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Hughes

One ring to rule them all and in the darkness bind them.

Aug 28, 2014 at 9:59 AM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Sloppy language: "both the evidence and the holes in it"

Speaks for itself really.....cheesy

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:02 AM | Unregistered CommenterEx-expat Colin

And how exactly will they be funded?

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:08 AM | Unregistered CommenterStuck-Record

I found this on their website:
"Green Deal - a system of expert consultations and loans launched in 2013". I misread it as "Green Deal - a system of expert consultations and loons launched in 2013", which made much more sense, although you would need to take out the word "experts"

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:14 AM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

What we can do is to support communicators of all kinds in ensuring that both the evidence and the holes in it are conveyed as clearly and accurately as possible, and so put the debates we need to have in their full context.?

Oh come come lets be honest about what you are up to!!!!!!

What we can do to direct funding to our friends to ensure that rigorous mathematics and physics are totally suppressed in all forms of media ....and so let us and and our friends.... waffle meaninglessly drivel....(communicate??) at conferences in far flung places in full air conditioned, factually insulated and tax payer funded splendor.

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterTrago12

I'm afraid the first thing I rread was a link to the phony 90% consensus papers. Another attempt at communicating fears rather than thinking about realities.

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:28 AM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

I do not think that this is necessarily a bad thing as the GWPF has itself set up a campaigning as well as an educational organisation which willl lead to accusations of bias inevitably. However, looking at the names presented, they seem to lack expertise in many instances and also will be mainly hobbits. Could be very interesting in terms of coverage in the MSM.

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:28 AM | Unregistered CommenterTrefor Jones

'ensuring that both the evidence and the holes in it are conveyed '

But Richard , the dark price*, has spent years telling us there was no 'holes in it'
The good news is that even when he uses his BBC connections , and he will has that his is meal ticket to this party , it can hardly make the BBC’s coverage of AGW worse.

[* prince? BH]

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:31 AM | Unregistered Commenterknr

So, that's where all the zombies are coming from ...

http://thepointman.wordpress.com/2014/08/20/28-predictions-later-or-the-invasion-of-the-living-dead/

Pointman

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:56 AM | Unregistered CommenterPointman

“Dr Emily Shuckburgh, Head of Open Oceans, British Antarctic Survey”

Who presumably has more time to spare as the amount of ‘open ocean’ diminishes...

Aug 28, 2014 at 11:17 AM | Registered Commenterjamesp

"Professor Joanna Haigh, Co-Director, Grantham Institute, Imperial College London"

Two words which tell you all you need to know...

Aug 28, 2014 at 11:35 AM | Unregistered CommenterDave Ward

What, no actors or rock stars?

Still, it's not too late. Miley Cyrus might be available.

Aug 28, 2014 at 12:19 PM | Registered Commenterjohanna

Andrew,

I think you should test them out by aproaching them as a "communicator" who has an excellent track record of "conveying clearly and accurately both the evidence and the holes in it".

Go on. Call their bluff.

<quote>What we can do is to support communicators of all kinds in ensuring that both the evidence and the holes in it are conveyed as clearly and accurately as possible, and so put the debates we need to have in their full context.</quote>

Aug 28, 2014 at 1:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterGeckko

Bish, on an anorak note it was Morgoth, Sauron's predecessor and original Dark Lord, who first created Orcs from captured Elves, as related in The Silmarillion. You don't want to be accused of the kind of slipshod approach to facts that climate scientists get away with! :)

Aug 28, 2014 at 1:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaul

Damn Paul I wanted to be the smug know-it-all that pointed that out...;)

Aug 28, 2014 at 2:15 PM | Unregistered Commentercd

The list says it all! It made me laugh. As you say, I doubt anyone will take any notice given all the other green noise.

Aug 28, 2014 at 2:23 PM | Unregistered Commentercd

There's a guy works down our chip shop swears he's Elvish...

Aug 28, 2014 at 2:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterRightwinggit

Not that they would release the data but, I'd bet that most of their net traffic will come via links from sites such as His Grace's.

Aug 28, 2014 at 2:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterBloke down the pub

As afficionados of The Lord of the Rings will no doubt know, the dark lord Sauron created orcs as corrupt mirror images of the elves. He created goblins in similar fashion, with dwarves in mind...

Bish, on an anorak note it was Morgoth, Sauron's predecessor and original Dark Lord, who first created Orcs from captured Elves, as related in The Silmarillion. You don't want to be accused of the kind of slipshod approach to facts that climate scientists get away with! :)

Furthermore, orcs and goblins were the same creatures. (Which is why "Orcrist"...orc-rist....was the "Goblin Cleaver.")

Trolls, on the other hand, were created as mockeries of ents.

Aug 28, 2014 at 6:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlberich

While we're on the subject, IIRC the introduction to the history of the Shire in The Lord of The Rings clearly refers to Middle Earth's own natural recovery from a "Little Ice Age", with the Shire's climate being described as becoming milder over the years... No Hockey Stick there, though perhaps one could have been concocted by SaruMann.... OK, I'll get my coat!

Aug 28, 2014 at 7:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaul

Ah, my local MP ◾Martin Horwood, MP for Cheltenham.

He is a Lib Dem.

But his personal website is all adorned in the colour Green. Literally.
http://www.martinhorwood.net/index.php

It's as though he's hiding his party affiliation.
We are a marginal.

Aug 28, 2014 at 9:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterM Courtney

"...though perhaps one could have been concocted by SaruMann..."

ROFL. I guess that makes McKitrick Gandalf.

Aug 28, 2014 at 10:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterBart

There are at best just two of the advisors that one would consider as having any educational and experiential background to critically assess the science.

Aug 28, 2014 at 11:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterMike Singleton

Alberich should know. His name means 'ruler of the elves'.

Aug 29, 2014 at 1:40 AM | Unregistered CommenterDr. Doug

One of the most significant names there is Crispin Tickell, the Grand Old Man of Global Warming, highly influential and working behind the scenes for the whole AGW story.

Aug 29, 2014 at 11:23 AM | Registered Commenterdennisa

And he comes from that <I>other</I> story about the all-powerful ring with a curse on it...

Aug 30, 2014 at 7:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlberich

Ben Pile has posted a devastating analysis of this 'Unit' and the context in which it appears: http://www.climate-resistance.org/2014/08/does-the-uk-need-another-climate-unit.html

His conclusion:

So don’t be fooled, The Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit does not exist to inform the public, but to deny the public democratic expression. The Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit is not about ‘science’, it is about transforming politics, to take power away from people, to put it in the hands of dead ‘philanthropists’.

Aug 30, 2014 at 10:44 AM | Registered CommenterJohn Shade

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