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« Letts accuse | Main | The point of the Met Office »

What DECC knew

Greenpeace have been doing some rather odd FOI work in recent months. It seems they have decided to investigate the series of parliamentary questions that Lord Donoughue put to to DECC ministers about the Met Office's statistical reasoning. Readers will recall that these questions were formulated with Doug Keenan's advice, were aimed at determining how the Met Office justified its claim that recent temperature rises were statistically significant, and that the eventual result, after months of non-answers from the Met Office, was that they effectively withdrew the claim.

The documents Greenpeace have made public are very interesting but I'm not sure that our environmentalist friends have considered exactly what it is they have got.

It does rather come across as if the DECC team wanted to "move on". In Document 4, the briefing ahead of the meeting between Keenan, Donoughue and the DECC team of Baroness Verma, David Mackay and David Warrilow, officials list their objectives for the meeting as being:

  • to demonstrate a willingness to listen
  • to demonstrate to Lord Donoughue that DECC's scientists are reasonable and, erm, scientific
  • to steer Lord Donoughue away from Keenan.

It would appear then that responding to the statistical concerns raised was not a priority. In fact, the only discussion of these ahead of the meeting was the following:

The argument is based around the comparison of a simple linear 'line-of-best-fit?) model and a more complicated statistical model, favoured by Doug Keenan. A simple linear model shows a statistically significant increase in global temperatures, using Keenan's more complex model does not. It is asserted that claims of statistical significance in the global temperature record are the Met Office's best evidence for concern around global warming.

Thus these Parliamentary Questions appear to be an attempt to undermine the general recognition by the scientific community that the rise in global surface temperatures over the last century is significant. REDACTED

So the DECC team seem internally quite clear that Keenan's calculations are correct (and recall that his question was only to give the calculation!). It is perhaps unsurprising therefore that when the meeting took place (Document 5 has the minutes) they didn't want to talk about any of the points Keenan and Donoghue were making about statistics and time series. So we see Baroness Verma trying to move the conversation onto the wider question of the use of statistics in climate work, David Mackay wanting to talk about physical models, and then Verma wondering whether they should talk about the use of statistics in DECC's 2050 calculator. Any attempt to discuss the point at issue seems to have been squashed.

So why the prevarication? The clue is in the extract above. The bit about "the best evidence for concern" about global warming is not something I can recall Keenan ever having said. As far as I know, he examined the Met Office's claims on statistical significance because the Met Office had stated them as important evidence in the global warming debate. This would appear to be a bit of "sexing up" of the facts for the benefit of ministers ahead of the meeting.

Why would they do that? Well the answer is in the next sentence, when they tell ministers that the parliamentary questions were "an attempt to undermine the general recognition by the scientific community that the rise in global surface temperatures over the last century is significant". So while the statistics showed that the warming was not significant, there was a "general recognition" among scientists that it was. And they must have been telling ministers this in the full knowledge that the "simple linear model" is recognised by statisticians on all sides as being wholly inadequate therefore seems wholly culpable. This is astonishingly culpable.

I think we can see that DECC officials were unconcerned about the science. What actually concerned them was that an honest response might give "ammunition to the sceptics" (as someone once said). Seen in this light, what Greenpeace has revealed is as damning an indictment of the integrity of DECC officials as you could ever hope to find.

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Reader Comments (49)

There is a 'general recognition' that the DECC is a waste of breathable air, a view probably shared by Greenpeace.

Why do taxpayers have to pay for either of them?

Aug 5, 2015 at 5:12 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Isn't there a crime of "misconduct in a public office" or something like that related to fraud?

Let's put it this way - a banker was jailed for 14 years for manipulating a poxy Libor interest rate. What then is the penalty for manipulating a figure that is intended to destroy the whole (western) economy?

Aug 5, 2015 at 5:15 PM | Registered CommenterMikeHaseler

Greenpeace's FOIing seems to have been done by the Request Initiative. In short: RI have bombarded DECC with FOI requests and FOI Internal Reviews on GP's behalf to invent a story about DECC being bombarded by FOI requests (2 dozen over the course of 14 months).

It is absurd that Greenpeace -- whose MO is exactly endless FOIs, personal attacks on politicians and officials, obstruction of lawful business, shutting down of civil infrastructure and direct action stunts -- should be complaining about slightly too many FOI requests to a govt department submitted by a serving politician.

These are the people who:

* Scale Parliament when it doesn't do what they want.
* Aggressively picket privately-owned petrol stations because the franchising company doesn't do what they say.
* Block airport runways and obstruct development when the planning process doesn't suit them.
* Shut down power stations and their supply merely to boost their media profile.
* Attack the homes of politicians who disobey their demands.
* Print endless volumes of smears, outright lies and disinformation about individuals who disagree with their political aims.
* Encourage its members to harass and intimidate politicians, businesses and individuals they disagree with.
* Blackmail companies into obeying their demands and supporting their campaigns.
* Use front organisations like the RI to harass climate sceptics and their families, friends and associates.

And much more besides.

And on the other hand, we have a Peer, and climate sceptic, who wanted to use FOI requests to challenge the statistical basis of green policies. Even if -- as seems to be the implication -- somebody lost patience during the process, Greenpeace have nothing to complain about.

It will be interesting to see how closely the story given by Greenpeace matches DECC's responses to the FOI requests when they are published on DECC's website. It seems Greenpeace have woven this story out of thin air, exposing only their own hypocrisy.

Aug 5, 2015 at 5:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterBen Pile

Implicit in all this seems to be that they consider that "the scientific community" is incapable of deciding for itself and needs to be told what is important. A bit insulting, really, but we're used to that.

What I don't get, is Greenpeace's FOI interest in the matter. Do they think this is going to lead them to the secret lair of Dr. Evil&The Deniers?

Aug 5, 2015 at 5:58 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

The provisions of the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act 2010

This legislation placed the Civil Service values on a statutory footing and includes the publication of a Civil Service Code.

Integrity – putting the obligations of public service above personal interests
Honesty – being truthful and open
Objectivity – basing advice and decisions on rigorous analysis of the evidence
Impartiality – acting solely according to the merits of the case and serving governments of different political parties equally well

Aug 5, 2015 at 6:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterAnoneumouse

I think the phrase is 'fodder to the skeptics.'

Aug 5, 2015 at 6:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikeN

Ben Pile: One of the "much more besides" is illegally entering a nuclear power station, injuring security staff, doing criminal damage and and putting themselves and employees at risk of a radiological hazard.

Aug 5, 2015 at 6:41 PM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

michael hart

What I don't get, is Greenpeace's FOI interest in the matter. Do they think this is going to lead them to the secret lair of Dr. Evil&The Deniers?

If you stop thinking of Greenpeace as a charitable organisation caring about the environment and consider that they are an anarchical terrorist group with Marxist undertones whose main aim is to bring about socialist revolution then you may understand that the vehicle of climate change is just a means to an end.

If Governments can be proved to be inadequate or even taken to court and sued then the system of government can be undermined even if the government in question was caught in indiscretion due to being persuaded to support a cause promoted by those seeking to derail them.

This is the monotone of the university educated socialist ideologist who has never had a productive job in their lives but who has all the answers as to how to change society to accommodate a world of non workers.

Aug 5, 2015 at 7:06 PM | Registered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

'I think we can see that DECC officials were unconcerned about the science.'

to be fair the chances are very good these officials were all Oxbridge PPE's who knew little about science in the first place , if they knew a lot about what 'message' was required.

And to be extra fair , reject good statistical practice is after a corner stone climate 'science' where the normal pratice is the Mann style 'use what you want how you need' it to get the results you have already decide are required.

So we can say , as we so often do , that although what we seen is dishonest and poor pratice , it is in reality 'normal for climate science ' therefore these official where following standard procedure.

Aug 5, 2015 at 7:19 PM | Unregistered Commenterknr

knr on Aug 5, 2015 at 7:19 PM

You beat me to it!

If one of the P's was Physics, they might have had a chance. Even an E for Engineering would have offered a little hope!

Aug 5, 2015 at 7:31 PM | Registered CommenterRobert Christopher

knr: You can go to the DECC website and see organograms and the salaries etc of all the top staff. Last time I looked, non of the top people (apart from the chief scientific adviser) had any scientific or engineering qualifications, just finance, marketing, PR etc (probably mostly Oxbridge PPE as you say).

Aug 5, 2015 at 7:41 PM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

I am greatly glad to see this post, and I agree with the remarks made by His Eminence. Some additional points follow.

An extract from the article, quoting the minutes of the meeting at DECC, is below.

[Keenan] argues that the use of “time series” is essential, and so advanced that it can “only be successfully completed by financial experts such as those of Wall Street,” according to minutes of a meeting released in the FOIs. As such, “the statisticians in academia and climate change are not qualified” the minutes add.

Certainly the use of time series is essential: a large majority of climatic data sets are time series. The two quotes, however, are wrong. Regarding the first quote, what I actually said was that the best time-series analysts tend to be in finance. Time-series analysts in finance generally get paid 5–25 times as much as those in academia; so analysts in finance do naturally tend to be more skillful than those in academia—though there are exceptions. Regarding the second quote, what I actually said was that climate scientists are not competent in time-series analysis.

Another extract from the article is below.

Keenan states that “there is no evidence at all from observational or proxy data that can be used statistically to support the global warming debate.”

Mackay, Warrilow, and one of the redacted attendees “all disputed this and provided evidence both observational and proxy which supported their argument and the Global Warming debate.”

The meeting ends with Lord Donoughue asking to be sent observational evidence that supports climate change.

The first quote is accurate. For the second quote, I would change “which supported their argument” to “which they claimed supported their argument”. As the minutes state, there was a debate about whether the evidence they presented contradicted what I had stated (in the first quote). The debate went on without resolution. Lord Donoughue then intervened, and said that the DECC Chief Scientific Adviser, David MacKay, should send him the details of the evidence (the evidence that contradicted my quoted statement). MacKay agreed to do so, as the minutes correctly indicate.

Neither MacKay nor anyone else, however, sent Lord Donoughue, or me, any such evidence. Thus, they seemed to ultimately effectively acknowledge that my statement is valid: there is no evidence.

Additionally, the Greenpeace article should note what happened twelve days after the meeting, on 21 January 2014. Then, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (Baroness Verma) answered a Parliamentary Question that had been previously tabled by Lord Donoughue. The Answer was as follows.

Her Majesty’s Government does not rely upon any specific statistical model for the statistical analysis of global temperature time series.

Global temperatures, along with many other aspects of the climate system, are analysed using physically-based mathematical models, rather than purely statistical models. [HL4497]

In plain English, the government stopped using or relying on statistical analysis of observational evidence for global warming; instead, the government started relying solely on computer simulations of the climate system. In short, they effectively accepted the criticisms in my critique—as Lord Donoughue had been advocating.

Regarding the number of Parliamentary Questions that Lord Donoughue tabled, this was because they kept refusing to give straight answers.

In the response to the FoI request, Item 4 claims that I am an economist. I am not, and I have never suggested that I was. Item 4 also claims that there is a certain statistical model that I favor. There is no statistical model that I favor: I have stated this repeatedly and consistently. Item 4 further claims that I have asserted that “claims of statistical significance in the global temperature record are the Met Office’s best evidence for concern around global warming”. I have never asserted or suggested that.

Item 4, Annex D, contains a copy of an e-mail that I sent to a statistician. The e-mail asks the statistician if they would be willing to comment on a draft of my critique. I actually sent the same e-mail to about 20 statisticians. I wanted to critique to be as good as feasible, before the critique was submitted to DECC, and so I sent drafts out widely.

Finally, my critique should not be new to Greenpeace. Indeed, I sent a copy to the Greenpeace UK Chief Scientist, Doug Parr, on 17 June 2014. I did not receive a reply.

Aug 5, 2015 at 8:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterDouglas J. Keenan

IMHO - The response by DJK would make an excellent stand-alone posting, and receive an even wider audience than 'buried' (no offence) as a reply.

Aug 5, 2015 at 9:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Public

Thank you for doing this work.

Except for a few people bringing such information to a daily world-wide audience we would never know what these loo-inhabitants are up to.
Best thing Al G. ever did was support the internet.

Aug 5, 2015 at 9:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn F. Hultquist

I second Joe Public's suggestion - a very fine and lucid account of the proceedings, and pretty damning for DECC.

Aug 5, 2015 at 10:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlex Cull

'Climate scientists are not competent in time series analysis"

Or statistics in general as found in the Climategate enquiries.

As the 'science is settled', can the scientists now please stand aside while an audit is carried out?

Aug 5, 2015 at 10:23 PM | Unregistered Commenterssat

I note that predictive text and predictive science are similarly useful.

Aug 5, 2015 at 10:27 PM | Unregistered Commenterssat

Any chance that an FOI to DECC would reveal the extent of DECC's dependency on advice and reports supplied by Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth?

It is of a matter of public concern that a Government Department of unqualified political philosophers is being influenced by subversive elements proud of their contempt for law.

Do DECC contribute towards their funding?

Aug 5, 2015 at 10:32 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie


I've been thumping that tub for several years now. As far as I'm aware no persecutions prosecutions have been instigated - ever. The Sir Humphreys (really) don't like it though ... not at all - to the point where they portray it as entirely something within their whim- which is errant b*****s (if you read it - I have) . In addition there's no tariff of sanctions for transgression listed in the act - so it's toothless too.

In truth... Conspiracy to Defraud is imho, a far sharper tool and actually in light of this FoI entirely appropriate. The nice thing about it is that it's criminal and the tariff on conviction is over 6 months porridge which means it goes straight to Crown Court - unless CPS can convince a senior judge that it's not in the public interest.... You can lay the charge and evidence at your local magistrates court = light blue touch paper etc.....

We've seen Leigh Day pro-bono-ing alarmist stuff - where are the skeptical legal eagles?

Aug 6, 2015 at 12:23 AM | Registered Commentertomo

Thank you, Keenan, for posting here and for your efforts in general.

Aug 6, 2015 at 1:05 AM | Unregistered CommenterBrute

Well Bish, here you are complaining about the pointlessness of wind farm projects but it turns out you are involved in one yourself :)

My thanks also to Doug Keenan for attempting to shine a technical light on to some ingrained beliefs at DECC


Aug 6, 2015 at 8:00 AM | Unregistered Commentertonyb

So while the statistics showed that the warming was not significant, there was a "general recognition" among scientists that it was.

A neat summary of the overall scenario.

Aug 6, 2015 at 8:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterPunksta

Thank you, Mr Keenan, for your difficult but invaluable work on this.

Aug 6, 2015 at 9:18 AM | Unregistered CommenterJonathan Abbott

Punksta, I think this summaries the whole problem - the word significant is being used both in a technical mathematical sense, and as a general english term, and the two are not interchangeable. The DECC team seem unable or unwilling to recognise that therein lies the problem.

Aug 6, 2015 at 9:55 AM | Registered Commentersteve ta

Tamino is a statistician working in the finance sector, specialising in time series analysis who still gets basic things wrong due to his innate bias in forming assumptions.
Like the Met office he ritually applies a linear trend to an obviously non-linear series in order to discuss significance - a much abused and overblown concept in the first place. Even worse than the Met Office, he ritually places his change-point in the mid-70's; a period which he otherwise asserted was artificially cooled by manmade aerosols. When cornered about such blatant errors he is either abusive or silent.

Hence I don't especially think that the finance sector is likely to be more reliable and their inability to foresee the crash is a pretty good indication of that. They are every bit as likely to succumb to bias as academics; perhaps moreso if their salary depends on it. Everything hinges on those initial assumptions which are usually founded on sand and influenced by the statisticians pre-formed worldview. The inconvenient fact is that the temperature chart is indistinguishable from a random walk.

An even worse display of ignorance of basic stats though from climate 'scientists' (some with actual PhD's in maths) is to try to argue that larger model error spreads somehow mean that the models are not as bad at matching observations as they appear. To any objective observer this is obviously arrant nonsense but the charlatans will argue black is white until blue in the face. Even using frequentist stats on models in the first place is an error because the model inputs are non-random, highly biased, subjective pseudo-Bayesian priors and model outputs are pre-culled from the ensemble if they show any cooling. Applying frequentist stats to a show of hands of people pre-selected to give an opinion - as per the IPCC infamous 95% - is even more perverse but that indefensible process was unbelievably condoned recently on TV by a prominent academic statistician.

As Doug recalls, the science itself says almost nothing; it is only the interpretation of the science by climate scientists which provides any 'evidence'. Evidence of course is merely an argument in support of a claim and expert witness testimony is commonly accepted as evidence. In this case the 'experts' are those with the qualifications and experience such that we'd expect to be able to believe them. Alas they too often just make stuff up, often unsupported by any underlying science, sometimes based on just a single outlier paper. Perversely the scientific consensus is being driven by a desired policy goal, which seems in turn to be based on a conspiracy theory that we can easily have alternative energies if only big-oil, big coal, big nuclear didn't prevent it. Hence anyone who steps out of line must perforce be a shill.

It all represents, yet again, the triumph of voodoo/cultist belief over scientific reasoning.

Aug 6, 2015 at 10:11 AM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

Well done the Bish for working through that Greenpeace piece (I was tempted to write 'piss' there, such is my contempt for that disgraceful organisation, but I will desist) and spotting and highlighting these important revelations. Messrs Keenan and Donoughue have made a great contribution here, and it is good to see more details of it out in the open like this. The vacuous heart of climate alarmism.

Aug 6, 2015 at 10:49 AM | Registered CommenterJohn Shade

Without wanting to seem rude or ungrateful here...but what is the point of Lord Donoughue BEING Lord Donoughue if he cannot go and din into David Cameron and Amber Rudd just what is going on here?

It would appear that the entire exercise has been a complete waste of time apart from reinforcing the opinions of regular Bishop Hill Readers. Not that that is not nice and comforting and all that but it is sod all USE, is it?

Perhaps the good Lord could ask a few reporters from the Guardian Climate Change brigade round and punch this information into them? His job is surely more than just asking a few awkward questions and then sitting back smiling knowingly and nudging his like-minded buddies when the government flubs them.

Or am I asking too much of our representatives?

Aug 6, 2015 at 12:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterJack Savage

holdon, taxpayers' value for money (which is ALWAYS undisputable innit, its only the money provisioning, paying taxes that deserves scrutiny indeed criminalisation)

taxpayers value for money, we have here a lordship of the highest legislative chamber in a big western economy that oversees a meeting with some importance, and this lordship asks a few relevant questions and the grey mice just -do not act upon it-??

chuck the mice all out, now !
Or better send them to prison straightaway , the mansion judge will fill out the paperwork for the accomodation.

What is this, a functioning state or a circus of highly paid Dolce Vita gasbags??

Thanks have a nive ufcking day.

Aug 6, 2015 at 1:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterVenusNotWarmerDueToCO2

Jack Savage is a bit unfair to Lord Donoughue, I think. Bernard D is a Labour peer - he worked in No 10 in the 1970s as senior policy advisor in tto Wilson and Callaghan. He is clearly a sceptic, and I believe he is on the board of GWPF. He has been using his position as a peer to try to dig some answers out of DECC, obviously with questions primed by Douglas Keenan, and we saw how DECC tried to block him every time - improperly, I believe. But at least he showed persistence, and his probing showed us exactly how dishonest the people at DECC can be.

How this information is then used is up to all of us. Lord D. would not have had easy access to the LibDem who ran DECC, and I don't think he was engaged in this issue at the time Labour ran the Department.

Given Lord D's persistence so far, I hope he is still pressing the case with Amber Rudd. And ironically the Greenpeace FOI material may strengthen his hand, helps him and Keenan point out to her how badly advised Ministers have been on the crucial issue of the statistical validity of the Warmist case that had been driving all the DECC policies.

Aug 6, 2015 at 1:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Anderson

Jack Savage
I must support John Anderson on this. Donoghue is a Labour peer (and from all I know of him, which is not much, one of those who is a credit to the House he sits in). But he has no particular access to the Secretary of State or the Prime Minister. Rudd is surrounded by civil servants who tell her what the Department's "line" is on everything to do with energy and climate change. The fact that they all appear to be green activists to some extent is a hangover from the days when the Department was run by Ed Miliband and apparently Bryony Worthington and "the science" was settled and thereafter by Huhne and Davey who were good little Lib-Dems and so fully signed up to all the eco-crap.
Unless and until Cameron realises that the whole climate change thing is a crock of shit ( and with SamCam — currently "the world's most stylish woman", yeugh! — breathing down his neck that may be some time) and appoints a SoS who will bring the department back into the real world then Lord Donoghue and Lord Lawson and Viscount Ridley et al are just voices in the wilderness to be ignored or converted to the "right" way of thinking.
What Greenpeace have very kindly done with this FoI request is demonstrate the extent to which people who ask questions that the DECC or the MO would rather not answer will be given the bum's rush and hopefully this piece of naivety on their part will come back to bite them sooner rather than later!

Aug 6, 2015 at 2:11 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Any chance that an FOI to DECC would reveal the extent of DECC's dependency on advice and reports supplied by Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth?

Aug 5, 2015 at 10:32 PM | golf charlie

Be interesting to find out how many current DECC employees were formally employed by GP etc.

Aug 6, 2015 at 2:25 PM | Registered CommenterBreath of Fresh Air

Thanks @John for clarifying @Jack's point, So thanks all round to Lord D and @Doug for persistence
Hopefully the "truth will out" but why does it have to be so dammed difficult ?
As Jack says we have : Dis-functional politics, a dis-functional press, a dis-functional civil service etc.
Plus a dis-functional environmental movement cos instead of doing what is best for the environment they are concentrated on defending their religious dogma to its death.

@tonyb's joke is about a Invenergy winfarm project at a place called Bishop Hill Farm in MA.
@Tomo your link came out bad probably due to a linespace getting inserted when you copied and pasted
Solicitors wrote a PDF "An Objector’s Guide to Fracking:The Planning System and High Court Challenges" Their Blog post on fracking, another
"we have set up the Environmental and Planning Litigation Service (EPLS). The EPLS aims to support individuals and groups in taking environmental cases against public bodies, " They list the Fracking & Airport plans they oppose but not the windfarms. Their history page mentions how they have worked with Greenpeace from 1987.
Partner Martyn Day is a Director of Greenpeace Environmental Trust (the Leigh is founder Sarah Leigh)

Aug 6, 2015 at 2:38 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

I have never seen anyone write and hiccup at the same time.

Aug 6, 2015 at 3:26 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Reed

Fair enough. I stand corrected. I am an impatient and grumpy old man. As I said, I do not wish to appear ungrateful and certainly not to Doug Keenan who has done sterling work for years.

However, when some tells me how this information is used is up to "us"....I cannot do much more than tell a few friends and my new MP....who probably already thinks I am a nutter.

Aug 6, 2015 at 4:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterJack Savage

What DECC knew? Almost nothing

What does DECC know now? That they really haven't a clue about anything

Who now knows that DECC are clueless idiots? Everyone, including Rudd and Cameron

Will UK PLC be better off without DECC? Yes.

Aug 6, 2015 at 5:03 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

In point 10) of item5 of greenpeace's documents David Mackay (DMK) is quoted as saying

A PQ is not the best way to discuss the issues raised by Doug Keenan and is a waste of parliamentary time.
A much more efficient and constructive way to discuss these highly technical areas is in working groups

Who is David Mackay to pronounce on what is and isn't a proper use of parlimentary questions and time?

Surely it is an entirely proper use of parlimentary questions and time to investigate the 'evidence' and thinking which forms government policy, especially when it involves the waste of £billions

Having had some experience of FOI procedure I would advise everyone not to accept a meeting as you can be told anything but will there be a written record?

Aug 6, 2015 at 5:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Shiers

Jeremy Shiers, based on recent evidence, David Mackay is an expert on subjects he knows nothing about. He is highly regarded at DECC, who presumably pay him accordingly.

Aug 6, 2015 at 6:49 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

@golf charlie / BoFA

Your wish ... in part at least

Aug 6, 2015 at 9:02 PM | Registered Commentertomo

@John F. Hultquist Aug 5, 2015 at 9:13 pm
'Invented' it, didn't he?

@John Shade Aug 6, 2015 at 10:49 p.m.
Try Greenpiβ. (Awfully Germanic, what? But seems not to offend).

Aug 6, 2015 at 9:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterSkeptik

tomo, good luck!

I hope that disclosures over the last few years, months and weeks, will cause a bit more honesty. It is not always the original misdeed that causes the maximum damage, and harm to peoples lives.

Banking is not the only sector that needs long prison sentences for dodgy exchanges.

Aug 6, 2015 at 10:16 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

golf charlie

It is worth asking - off the top of my head ... I think I can see a couple of rat holes to avoid answering. I actually think that none of the organisations listed has any business what-so-ever advising government in any way shape or form and most certainly should have zero "inside" connections.

Let's see.... I already have some tentative numbers but letting those out spoils the game :-) It's always sweet to know the answer when you ask a question - as the EA have discovered with some of my previous FoIs

Aug 6, 2015 at 10:29 PM | Registered Commentertomo

"...They never responded to my request at the meeting for observational evidence, though they promised to. Because they dont have any evidence. Just forecasting models which depend on the assumptions built in ..."

Since the questions and the promised responses were established as a matter of official public record; can or has their lack of substantive response been officially entered into the official record?

Avoidance of giving accurate or difficult answers by falsely promising them 'later', when they really mean never, should be a matter of perjury.

Aug 7, 2015 at 12:08 AM | Unregistered CommenterATheoK

Ben Pile and of Doug Keenan nail it well.
Green Peace is in effect institutionally corrupt. What they show is something I had not really considered before: They are not really very bright at all. Clever, ruthless, arrogant, hypocritical, yes. Bright? Not so much.

Aug 7, 2015 at 6:15 AM | Unregistered Commenterhunter

There is little point in having a go at David Cameron, he is guided by Letwin and Deben, who was his personal choice for CCC chair in spite of the many conflicts of interest.

Telegraph ,"Cameron pledges tough measures on climate change", Wednesday 14 December 2005

"David Cameron promised yesterday that under his leadership the Conservative Party would be ready to take the "tough decisions" needed to cut Britain's greenhouse gas emissions to combat global warming. He appointed Zac Goldsmith, an environmental and anti-globalisation campaigner, and John Gummer, a former Conservative environment secretary, to take charge of a new policy group looking at quality of life issues.

Oliver Letwin, the party's policy supremo, has already started working with the Liberal Democrats on policies to tackle climate change in his former role as shadow environment secretary."

13 October 2005 "Opposition parties demand action on climate change "
By Michael McCarthy, Environment Editor

"The Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats are seeking cross-party consensus on countering global warming and new measures to cut greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide which cause it. The idea of a cross-party initiative has come from Norman Baker, the Liberal Democrat environment spokesman, and it has been accepted by his Tory counterpart, Oliver Letwin. In a Commons debate on climate change today they will make their case for unity."

Jump forward to 2011 and we had Letwin writing for UNEP magazine, at that time edited by Geoffrey Lean, with an article entitled "Let's Lock in Green Growth"

"The Durban and Rio+20 conferences must give a concerted push to more sustainable, low carbon, resource efficient and climate resilient development."
"Whilst a student at Cambridge, he was an active member of the Cambridge University Liberal Club. When asked about his membership of the liberal club he explained:

"I was also a member of the Fabian Society. But I am sorry to have to tell you that this was because I was interested in the thoughts of Liberals and Fabians (and still am) rather than because I was ever a Liberal Democrat or a Fabian."

"Following the decision by Michael Howard to stand down as Conservative Party leader after the May 2005 general election, Letwin publicly backed the youngest candidate and eventual winner David Cameron, a fellow Etonian. He was subsequently given the newly created role of Chairman of the Policy Review, when Cameron formed his first shadow cabinet in December 2005."

Aug 7, 2015 at 8:43 AM | Registered Commenterdennisa

We're missing the point here folks.
Any political leader of a major country, who comes out with anything that even remotely sounds like "CAGW is a load of crap" will immediately face a number of big problems.
1) From the general public "If CAGW's a load of crap, when are the various taxes levied with a view that it's a major threat, going to be lifted"?
Sub-category from this being, the imminent collapse of the "Green energy industry", loss of jobs & potential law suits from various sources.
2) Where's the money previously coming from these taxes now going to come from?
3) Leaders of other countries, who's budgets rely on a big chunk coming from these taxes, will be besieging the leader who's just kicked the hole in their budget.
It's going to be fun to see how this will unravel!

Aug 7, 2015 at 9:56 AM | Unregistered CommenterAdam Gallon

Now that we have Amber instead of Verma in DECC Lord Donoughue should re-state his questions and demand an answer.

Aug 7, 2015 at 6:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Peter

John Peter

The protocol is that each Department has a spokesman in the House of Lords to answer questions from peers. Verma has been replaced by Lord Bourne, so Lord Donoughue would have to put fresh questions to him - he cannot ask for answers from the Secretary of State as she is in the Commons.

The problem is - Lord Bourne sounds just as drippy as Velma, to judge by this Greenpeace article. He was previously a law professor - but sounds a Warmist !

His answers in the Lords on 17 June are very depressing - especially when he contradicts the factual statements made by Nicholas Ridley :

That set of questions had been led off by Bryony Worthington - the sense from that exchange is that Bourne is more or less in step with her loonie thinking and opposes Ridley's pragmatism.

But of course Amber Rudd is the Head of DECC - the real question is how far she can - or wants to - face down her misguided civil servants, the zealots who surround her. It looks to me as though the few changes she has made so far are under pressure from the Treasury. She is not challenging the central Warmist dogmas.

Aug 7, 2015 at 7:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Anderson

John Anderson:
I think you mean Matt Ridley, don't you?

Aug 8, 2015 at 11:23 AM | Unregistered CommenterMessenger

Messenger - yes of course - I should have said MATT Ridley ! Thanks.

Aug 8, 2015 at 11:49 AM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Anderson

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