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« Greens fade to grey | Main | The Times does climate »
Sunday
Nov292015

Lean times for the green blob

Some years back I was discussing the state of environmental coverage in the media with someone from the Telegraph. I commented that I thought it was very strange that the Tele had taken Geoffrey Lean on as a correspondent given that his views were pretty much anathema to most of its readers.

"Ah, that's simple" I was told. "He's not there for the benefit of the readers but because green advertisers want him". This made perfect sense at the time.

Now, as we all know, times are increasingly hard for the green blob, with George Osborne apparently wanting to put the whole renewables industry on a starvation diet. So it was interesting to see this from Lean on Twitter this morning:

Lean times indeed.

 

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Reader Comments (52)

While Geoffrey Lean was not the most insightful or informed of columnists, he was consistent.

There is benefit in having a broad range of views on display for discussion.
The decline of the Guardian since it sought to simplify it's readership for advertisers to target...it is not good.

The Telegraph should be wary.

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:33 AM | Registered CommenterM Courtney

Aha!

Make sure that all the comments that are placed on a Lean article include words to the effect of:

"Why is this person employed by the Telegraph? "

Just to ensure that management is in no doubt about the readers wishes...

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:34 AM | Unregistered CommenterDodgy Geezer

Lean by name, lean by...oh!...forget it.

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterSean

@ MCourtney

...While Geoffrey Lean was not the most insightful or informed of columnists, he was consistent....

Consistency is no reason for retention.

If the Telegraph wants columnists that attract readers they need to be insightful, well-informed and thought-provoking. There must be good writers out there who support Global Warming theory if that's felt to be necessary - it's not good enough to have someone who consistently writes poor quality material and whose only good point is that he supports a specific position, regardless of the evidence.

A bit off-topic, but I've just been put on pre-moderation again by the Guardian. My crime? Supporting a call by another banned writer who called for the Guardian to write articles covering the discrepancy between Global Warming models and real-life data...

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterDodgy Geezer

I'm with M Courtney, I used to regularly read Lean's column and regarded him as someone who'd made a good living from spouting nonsense. Having him there was a know your enemy thing for me. However once Delingpole left there wasn't a diametrically opposed voice and over the last year or so my visits to the Telegraph have become a brief scan every couple of days.

Does this mean that the Telegraph's revenue from green advertising has fallen significantly recently?

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:47 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Progress from the Telegraph in ridding itself of 'greenpeace' stooges.

First Loopy Lou went, now Geriatric Geoffrey

Excellent.

I might even shell out to buy a copy one day.

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:51 AM | Unregistered CommenterHorace Rumpole

BBC Front Page:

"Paris climate deal 'more likely'"
"Six charts that explain climate change"
"What will the Paris summit achieve?"
"Why do two degrees matter?"
"Switzerland’s vanishing natural wonder"
"Solar cuts 'threat to hundreds of jobs'"
"Can bikers be tempted to go electric?"
"Andrew Walker: Is there an economic case for tackling climate change?"

There is always the BBC

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

What a surprise that someone involved in green energy wishes every newspaper had a Geoffrey Lean

Nov 29, 2015 at 10:00 AM | Unregistered Commentersunderlandsteve

Lean or no Lean, the Telegraph is still sufficiently ignorant of industry and society to remain on message:-

Higher carbon taxes are coming – get used to it

"........... Much fiercer carbon taxes are coming, driving huge change not just in energy consumption and production, but in all the myriad industries that depend on hydro-carbons, from plastics to automotive, metal bashing and even many service activities, which can be surprisingly energy intensive.

Businesses that bury their heads in the sand, don’t prepare, or fail to take advantage of the investment boom that this change brings about, will get left behind. As in all industrial revolutions, there will be lots of losers, but rich rewards await the winners. "

Industry being "surprisingly energy intensive", really? Yeh, sure it would come as a surprise to somebody the Telegraph describes as "one of Britain's leading business and economics commentators"

"As in all industrial revolutions, there will be lots of losers, but rich rewards await the winners".

So stuff UK industrial workers and their families they can go hang, the rich rewards await the troughers!

What used to be known as the unacceptable face of capitalism!

Nov 29, 2015 at 10:12 AM | Registered CommenterGreen Sand

Will he have time to report on this?

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/maurice-strong-dead-obit-un-1.3341829?cmp=rss&cid=news-digests-canada-and-world-evening

Nov 29, 2015 at 10:56 AM | Registered Commenterdennisa

Poor old Private Godfrey ...

Pointman

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:00 AM | Unregistered CommenterPointman

Does this show that the MSM are just beginning to read the writing on the wall?

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:18 AM | Unregistered Commenterivan

"Businesses that bury their heads in the sand, don’t prepare, or fail to take advantage of the investment boom that this change brings about, will get left behind. As in all industrial revolutions, there will be lots of losers, but rich rewards await the winners."

The notion that tax hikes will bring about an investment boom is absurd. The winners in this case will the businesses that up sticks and move their operation to a country that doesn't have stupid green taxes.

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterStonyground

The Telegraph, is a skeleton of its former self, not untypical for the withering establishment media.
The comments were more interesting than the parroting journalists, the comments went, think the paper might be next...

Side note, Sky News is robotic (is Ian King a robot, seriously???) absent ANY critical or offside thinking at all, a big turn off!

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:28 AM | Unregistered CommenterGaznotprom

I must say I found his articles so densely packed with distortions, half truths and outright lies, that to refute every false claim he made would require a comment longer than each article itself. As a result I gave up reading and commenting on his nonsense.

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:30 AM | Unregistered CommenterChilli

"If the Telegraph wants columnists that attract readers they need to be insightful, well-informed and thought-provoking. There must be good writers out there who support Global Warming theory if that's felt to be necessary - it's not good enough to have someone who consistently writes poor quality material and whose only good point is that he supports a specific position, regardless of the evidence."

Indeed, Lean is a 'churnalist', he'll unthinkingly support/publish any green press release he comes across.

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:31 AM | Unregistered CommenterNial

The Telegraph is pushing him out? Great news!

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:36 AM | Unregistered CommenterBrent Hargreaves

Deja vue:

http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2014/8/7/lean-outdoes-himself.html

Pharos in the comments:

"Geoffrey Lean may come across as a rather harmless gullible old ecowarrior, but his influence in elevating the political profile of environmentalism has been significant. He was author of many reports for UNEP the United Nations Environment Program (whose first head was Maurice Strong),"

(who has just popped his clogs, see above)

"Geoffrey Lean was formerly Editor of 'Our Planet', the magazine of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). Also a consultant to the World Bank, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)"

Just recently he was on a jolly in Canary Wharf, http://www.norway.org.uk/Global/SiteFolders/WebLondon/B%C3%A6rekraftkonferansen/Sustainability%20Conference%20Full%20Programme.pdf

"Join sustainability-oriented game changers, senior members of the Norwegian and the UK Government, thought leaders and expert practitioners." 14 OCTOBER 2015, VENUE: LEVEL39, ONE CANADA SQUARE, CANARY WHARF, LONDON

"Two months before the international community comes together for COP21 in Paris, this conference will address how influential and inspirational game-changers from the business sector, organisations and government are taking action to promote and accelerate the Green Shift."

I think the "f" in the last word is a typo.

Just look at the trough feeders. Amber Rudd was along to be seduced into the whole green business dream.

Lean was a moderator.....as was James Cameron, former Executive Director and Vice Chairman of Climate Change Capital, http://www.climatechangecapital.com/search/search&keywords=james+cameron/

Lord Oxburgh was also at Climate Change Capital, http://www.climatechangecapital.com/search/search&keywords=Lord+Oxburgh/

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:38 AM | Registered Commenterdennisa

Lean out, old slick himself OUT............OUT of the DT?

Woe, alack and anyhow, Geoff can always fall back on his primary job - the press officer as 'chauffeur' for the outpourings of Peter Wadhams.

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:38 AM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

I wonder when the Guardian will cotton on to this concept of a balanced view, and hire James Delingpole?

The Guardian have adopted the high ground to cope with sea level rise. I think 'stranded asset' is the term they favour.

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:51 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Greensand, "Much fiercer carbon taxes ..... " come from government, not from the "face of capitalism", unacceptable or otherwise. The green blob has captured the politicians who in turn control $trillions. If it was just a capitalist he would be wasting only his own money.

Nov 29, 2015 at 12:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterBudgie

No one is 100% wrong but Lean had a good record at trying to challenge that.

Nov 29, 2015 at 12:57 PM | Unregistered Commenterferdinand

-

Nov 29, 2015 at 1:16 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

I'm with M Courtney, I used to regularly read Lean's column and regarded him as someone who'd made a good living from spouting nonsense. Having him there was a know your enemy thing for me. However once Delingpole left there wasn't a diametrically opposed voice and over the last year or so my visits to the Telegraph have become a brief scan every couple of days.

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:47 AM | SandyS

Um, Booker is as diametrically opposed to Lean as anyone could be, and regularly writes articles weighing against the Climate Jihadis.

Nov 29, 2015 at 1:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton

Re: Gaznotprom

> Side note, Sky News is robotic

Sky is in bed with WWF.

Last year WWF spent £15.5m "generating funds" which includes a lot of advertising on the Sky channels. In return Sky gave them a £4m donation.

Nov 29, 2015 at 1:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

100 demerits for you Mr SandyS ^.^

I find a huge difference between harmless nonsense and nothing but lies between the punctuation marks.

Nov 29, 2015 at 2:24 PM | Registered CommenterDung

If Green subsidies for wasting money, just paid for newspaper and other media advertising, then cuts to Green subsidies should be extended to the BBC.

Nov 29, 2015 at 2:57 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

There will indeed.

A few others have noticed the BBC seems 'keen' to 'settle debate' in ways that err on the unidirectional, some may say to a unique, if not vital degree.

http://isthebbcbiased.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/different-leads.html

Nov 29, 2015 at 3:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterJunkkMale

I think that you are all trying to be too clever in finding reasons for Lean's demotion. The reason is far more mundane .
For those unfamiliar with the Telegraph, let me point out that for the last year the paper has been gradually increasing the amount of feature and news space directed at female readers . This reflects the increasing purchasing power of women as they take over more of the better paid middle and upper management positions . More female journalists and more female directed space is required, especially at weekends when the Telegraph becomes basically a bazaar.
Given the relative total lack of interest in Green affairs amongst the population generally , Geoff Lean was always going to be one of the journalists likely to have to yield to new feature writers.
It does not appear that he will be forced on the breadline by this decision given the other irons that he has in the global warming fire.

Nov 29, 2015 at 3:38 PM | Unregistered Commentermikewaite

Lean may be gone but now we have Evans-Pritchard to take over.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/12021394/COP-21-climate-deal-in-Paris-spells-end-of-the-fossil-era.html

Nov 29, 2015 at 3:44 PM | Unregistered Commenterjazznick

mikewaite, are you saying that wage earning women are more intelligent than men, and are even less likely to go shopping for their helping of Sunday Greens with a newspaper thrown in for free?

Nov 29, 2015 at 4:48 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

ivan:

"Does this show that the MSM are just beginning to read the writing on the wall?"

It would, if they could read; but most in the MSM are intellectually illiterate.

Nov 29, 2015 at 4:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhilip Foster

Every time I read one of AEP's idiotic climate pieces my faith in his economic journalism takes a substantial hit. He should stick to economics.

I have be never been able to make it to the end of one of Lean's screeds. The writing is too turgid. But it does not actually matter because I know what he will say before he's said it.

Nov 29, 2015 at 5:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterJay Currie

Well on the subject of green blobs, the father of the greens, Maurice Strong died yesterday. No doubt we'll hear all sorts of nonsense eulogies delivered in Paris.
This is an old review of what a self-serving menace he was, but a good primer.
http://www.foxnews.com/story/2007/02/08/at-united-nations-curious-career-maurice-strong.html

Nov 29, 2015 at 5:22 PM | Unregistered Commentermikegeo

Aww, shame. My favourite GL piece was the one on how climate change was going to turn us all into hobbits. Best laugh I've had in years.

Nov 29, 2015 at 5:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarbara

A bit off-topic, but I've just been put on pre-moderation again by the Guardian. My crime? Supporting a call by another banned writer who called for the Guardian to write articles covering the discrepancy between Global Warming models and real-life data...
Nov 29, 2015 at 9:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterDodgy Geezer
If you don't get banned every six months you're not working hard enough! I hope you used a disposable email address?

Nov 29, 2015 at 5:57 PM | Unregistered Commentermichel

Golf charlie . I have no idea or opinion on the relative intellectual powers of men or women , but there is no doubt that women have greater economic, social and political power than a few years ago and the increase in space given to women oriented features reflects that .
Given the limited news space available some features had to be dropped and in the Saturday edition , which is full of advertising and special supplements , someone had to make way . Probably either Lean or Robin Page and I am glad it was not the latter (yet) since his is the feature that I turn to first.

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:15 PM | Unregistered Commentermikewaite

mikewaite, never mind. Lean could always get a job writing up the latest climate news for Cosmopolitan, and take the advertising money with him to pay for a new pot plant.

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:35 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Barbara

Here is the hobbit piece. The comments are priceless.


"Much of the Jurassic world was warm and moist, with a greenhouse climate. Obviously the Dinosaurs failed to read your articles (you were around then, were you not?)"


http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/geoffreylean/100197484/could-climate-change-turn-humans-into-hobbits/

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:36 PM | Unregistered Commenteresmiff

The Telegraph now has a lady called Emily Gosden who writes complete tripe about 'climate change' etc.

Nov 29, 2015 at 9:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterANH

"Emily Gosden" here's me thinking that Lou Lou did her stuff and that Geoffrey did Lou Lou, what a to do and on AEP - he's barking and has been so for a long time.

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:14 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

Richard Nourse (@RichardHCNourse) Founder and Managing Partner of Greencoat Capital. Recovering Merrill Lynch banker ...

... and so far up himself he's hardly visible.

Nov 29, 2015 at 11:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterBilly Liar

Head of Green invest fund wishes "every paper had a Lean"
..to do free PR that helps Nourse's Investment fund which is exclusively green energy with a host of wind and solar projects under its umbrella .
and coincidentally Nourse and colleagues used to work in gov supervising green subsidies as BH reported
Richard Nourse formerlye Department of Business Industry and Skills.
William Rickett was Director General of the Energy Group at DECC.

Nov 30, 2015 at 3:23 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Wow the govt is one of Nourse's big investors.
Coincidentally the same department he used to work for
Department for Business, Innovation and Skills is selling around 40m shares in Greencoat UK Wind, the infrastructure fund that listed in 2013

..Greencoat Wind was spun off from main part in 2013 ..I guess govt money invested in it then

Business Secretary, Vince Cable said: "The department invested in the launch of Greencoat UK Wind in March 2013 to help establish a new market for operational renewable energy assets.
..anyone smell fish ?

Nov 30, 2015 at 3:30 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Someone mentioned "churnalism" - and though I gave up reading the Telegraph 6 or 7 years ago, the thing about Lean's pieces was that they were mostly repetition - churning his own articles. That must have been an easy way to keep the cheques coming in.

Nov 30, 2015 at 9:14 AM | Unregistered CommenterMike Spilligan

Well, Alarmist green blob types still have Ambrose Evans-Pritchard.

He's a real cheerleader for the Green Blob.

Nov 30, 2015 at 9:41 AM | Unregistered CommenterGeckko

Corbyn Emissions linked to Terrorism

Today, the great Climate Con. in Paris highlighted the global danger of Excess Corbyn emissions..

The only way to curb these, it seems, is with renewable enemies.

Therefore we must work actively and pay taxes to create more renewable enemies, by bombing any towel head that we decide looks like the usual suspects.

Wars should not be allowed to stop: Instead a new sustainable climate of fear must be generated.

And reducing Corbyn emissions is the key to sustainable enemies.

Climate change is now *so* yesterday, today its global terrorism, back in front of you, available on all apps and smart devices. Shame about the owners...

Thanks goes to our Friends in Saudi Arabia, for assisting in creating this new wonderful climate of fear, to replace the old wonderful climate of fear.

I mean, without a proper climate of fear, who would pay their taxes?

Nov 30, 2015 at 11:11 AM | Unregistered CommenterLeo Smith

Any investigative journalism going on in Paris ?
I expect those churnalists will have an easy time just regurgitating what they are spoonfed.

Nov 30, 2015 at 1:52 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Bjorn Lomborg has directly tacked AEPs ridiculous "End of Fossil Fuels headline"

Eh, no. With very optimistic assumptions from the International Energy Agency, we'll continue to diversify our energy, going from 86% in 1971, to 81% today, to 75% in 2040. But three-quarters is hardly zero.
And remember, most of the renewables are still wood, causing untold harm for 2.8 billion people, causing 4.3m deaths each year from indoor air pollution.

Nov 30, 2015 at 1:57 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

He'd still being published:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/earth/paris-climate-change-conference/12024579/Paris-conference-The-old-white-men-and-their-climate-scepticism-are-finally-in-retreat.html

Are we retreating?

Nov 30, 2015 at 2:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterMissing Semicolon

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