Roger Helmer MEP writes to the Telegraph today.
An apology withdrawn
SIR – Sir John Houghton (Letters, August 15), the former IPCC Chairman, challenges the use of the quote, widely attributed to him that: “Unless we announce disasters, no one will listen.” He insists he said (and the record confirms this) that: “If we want a good environmental policy, we’ll have to have a disaster.”
This is a distinction without a difference. Either way, he is saying that the IPCC needs disasters to convince the public of the need for climate mitigation.
As someone who used the slightly incorrect quotation (in my Bruges Group book Cool Thinking on Climate Change), I now feel vindicated, and I withdraw an apology I made to Sir John for misquoting him.
Roger Helmer MEP (Con)
Market Harborough, Leicestershire
I think there is actually room for doubt over what precisely Houghton meant in his original statement. People's opinions will depend on whether they feel he deserves the benefit of that doubt.