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from Climate Depot...!

PARIS—Former French Science Minister Claude Allègre is at the center of a new controversy stemming from his role as a prominent climate change skeptic.

Sixty members of the French Academy of Sciences have written to the chancellor of the Institute of France, historian Gabriel de Broglie, objecting to Allègre's position at the new Fondation Ecologie d'Avenir, one of some 100 active foundations sheltered by the institute. The institute is also the umbrella organization for France's five academies, including that for sciences.

The 11 October letter, signed by such luminaries as 1997 physics Nobelist Claude Cohen-Tannoudji and former Academy president and physicist É douard Brézin, complains that several academy members discovered the existence of the foundation from press reports last week. The signatories note that an academy report last year disavowed Allègre's view that industry isn't a significant driver of climate change. In particular, the report stated that the increase in CO2 emissions and, to a lesser degree, other greenhouse gases were "unquestionably due to human activity." That increase, it adds, "constitutes a threat to the climate" and contributes to ocean acidification.

The report reflected the outcome of a debate held by the academy at the request of then science minister Valérie Pécresse in response to the outcry over Allègre's book, The Climate Fraud. More than 400 French climatologists had asked Pécresse to disavow Allègre's book, which they said was riddled with errors, and to express confidence in the climate research community.

Allègre, who was minister from 1997 to 2000, created the foundation, which takes a multidisciplinary approach to addressing major ecological challenges facing the planet. The foundation's home page features an editorial by Allègre and a video by new medicine Nobelist Jules Hoffman, who praises the foundation for bringing together scientists, economists, philosophers, and sociologists to find "a new way for satisfying those who love nature and depend on agricultural output." The foundation held its first conference last week, on bio-inspired technologies, and plans others on new technologies in agriculture.

The French daily Libération reported in an online blog that Catherine Bréchignac, perpetual secretary of the Academy of Sciences, former president of the basic research agency CNRS, and chair of the foundation's executive committee, said in a radio interview last week that the row was a "personal squabble" and that Allègre "would play no role in the foundation." ScienceInsider was unable to reach Bréchignac for further comment. The Institute of France did not respond to a request for comment on the academicians' letter, nor did five other members of the foundation's orientation committee. Hoffman said he was not available for comment today.
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Oct 20, 2011 at 9:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterPeter Walsh

After the Fox/Werrity scandal another bogus "ministerial adviser" - this time in DECC:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2011/oct/19/second-conservative-minister-accused-adviser?newsfeed=true

Amazingly, from the grauniad!

Oct 20, 2011 at 4:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoger Longstaff
Oct 20, 2011 at 3:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterElsabio
Oct 20, 2011 at 9:31 AM | Unregistered CommenterJiminy Cricket

I had to read this article a couple of times because of the sheer weight of the implications that it is proposing and my disbelief in what the authors are requesting.

http://www.theatlantic.com/life/archive/2011/10/whats-the-greenest-building-the-problem-with-ranking-systems/246965/

'The huge role of policy in solving the world's environmental problems suggests that corporate activism should be considered in all best-of lists

Including advocacy in their criteria will not only make rankings more accurate, but will also be good for the planet by steering consumers and investors in a positive direction -- along with rated companies themselves. Businesses respond to negative ratings.'

The basics of this article, correct me if my interpretation is wrong, is that it is no longer enough to practice what they preach, it is now necessary for business to preach what they preach!

This is not religious conviction?

Oct 20, 2011 at 8:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

The term 'peer-reviewed' is bandied about, particularly by those warm-hearted souls who use it as a shorthand for shutting down debate, as if it were a clear, well defined thing. It seems that our elders and betters might disagree with them.

From the draft report on Defamation, http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/jt201012/jtselect/jtdefam/203/20302.htm

The last line of para 48 reads "We recommend that a provision is added to the draft Bill extending qualified privilege to peer-reviewed articles in scientific or academic journals."

The paragraph following then goes on to decide that it's not possible to actually define what peer review is, or what journals or articles would qualify! Interesting reading.

Oct 19, 2011 at 11:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterCumbrian Lad

Oct 19, 2011 at 1:46 PM | John Shade
Oct 19, 2011 at 5:33 PM | Mike Jackson

That LSE event seems to be led by David Stainforth, who is one of the sternest critics of climate models (along with his colleague Lenny Smith). They are frequently warning us against over-interpretation of the models!

So although your posts seemed to be somewhat cynical, I do think it was appropriate to advertise this here as the seminar may well be of interest to BH readers.

Oct 19, 2011 at 10:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Betts

BBD

Wish I could live long enough to have one in the back garden, creating the home climate of my choice and charging the flying car in 10 mins, but to get there we need to provide business today with less restrictions on the cost of the energy that it consumes in order to allow technology to progress.and naturally find the solutions to our needs that are cost effective.

Oct 19, 2011 at 8:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

I wonder who sits next to who at the Cabinet meetings?

George Osborne is preparing to offer tax breaks to firms hit by Britain’s ‘absurd’ climate change policies after being warned they threaten to drive business abroad.

In a major U-turn, the Chancellor will try to help companies that use large amounts of energy.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2050316/Tax-breaks-firms-hit-absurd-green-targets-climate-change-policies.html#ixzz1bFxTDcsT

Oct 19, 2011 at 8:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

Only a measly billion towards CCS, but never mind Richard Black adds a comment or two.

Plans for the UK's first carbon capture project at the Longannet power station in Fife have been scrapped, the energy secretary has confirmed.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-north-east-orkney-shetland-15371258

Oct 19, 2011 at 7:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

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