By Paul Homewood
Booker’s column today deals with the BBC’s lamentable series, Climate Change and Me, this week:
In its drearily unscientific obsession with climate change, the BBC plumbed further depths last week when Radio 4 gave over its Book of the Week slot to a five-day series entitled “Climate Change and Me”, in which we were told that “scientists” would describe their personal experiences of global warming.
Proper experts had long since shown that climate change and this far-from-unprecedented drought had not caused the civil war in any way
This began with a marine biologist rehearsing the familiar scare story of how rising sea temperatures are destroying that wonder of the natural world, the Great Barrier Reef. He recalled seeing how the exceptional El Nino of 1998 produced a scene of “complete devastation”, when “99 percent of the corals were dead”. But he then went on to admit, without a blush, that after a year or two they “had bounced back to almost complete recovery”. The El Nino of 2016 wrought similar devastation. But again, on revisiting the Reef this year, he “found the corals springing back fast”.
This was followed by similarly muddled and unconvincing attempts to scare us from an ornithologist, wanting to blame global warming for the decline in so many bird species; a geographer on the dangerous warming of the Arctic (seemingly unaware that temperatures there are now no higher than they were 80 years ago, according to data from Denmark); and a civil engineer talking about the need for action to save us from those supposedly increasing “extreme weather events”.
The cream on the BBC cake, however, was a “human rights lawyer” (not exactly a scientist) who on Thursday riffed on the long-exploded claim that an unprecedented drought in 2008 had led to Syria’s civil war. As I explained in 2015, when Prince Charles repeated this scare story, proper experts had long since shown that climate change and this far-from-unprecedented drought had not caused the civil war in any way. But, when it comes to global warming, Prince Charles is no more concerned with scientific facts than the BBC.
If the BBC had been the slightest bit concerned about balance and giving listeners the full story, they could have interviewed the Australian barrier reef expert, Peter Ridd, who would have told them that we have only really been monitoring the reef since 1970, we have no idea whether recent bleaching is in any way unusual,and that the reef quickly recovers from these bleaching events.
They might have asked their bird expert just what evidence he has that bird populations are declining because of climate change, as opposed to habitat loss, insecticides etc.
They might have pointed out to the “Arctic expert”, who complains about the loss of Arctic sea ice since 1979, that the 1970s marked the coldest period in the Arctic since the 19thC, and that current temperatures are no higher than in the 1930s and 40s:
They might have reminded their human rights lawyer, who claims that climate change is leading to mass migration from Africa, that droughts across the Sahel were much worse in the 1970s, when the Earth was getting colder.
UNESCO Courier Magazine September 1973
And they might also have challenged the civil engineer to back up his assertion that extreme weather is getting worse.
However, this is the BBC, so you are more likely to see pigs flying over your house!
Booker had an article in the Mail during the week, about wood burning stoves, which I reported on here.
The article contained references to the health effects of air pollution, for instance:
Now we learn that wood-burning is the single biggest source of tiny soot particles called PM2.5s — they are also emitted by burning coal and diesel — which go into our lungs and are said to be responsible for an estimated 37,800 premature deaths a year.
This attracted criticism from some, both here and elsewhere, as such estimates have been shown to be highly controversial and exaggerated.
Booker however has informed me that he did not write any of those specific references, and that they were inserted by the Mail without reference to him.
Understandably, he is none too pleased!!
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May 27, 2018 at 07:03AM