Attenborough’s Netflix Nonsense

By Paul Homewood



Attenborough’s new Netflix series is out. I have not watched it, but someone has sent me some notes of his claims:


It seems to be going on big on the idea that the planet was once “stable” but now it’s not.


In the last 50 years wildlife populations have on average declined by 60 per cent” (voiced over footage of a polar bear!)


“The future of this whole migration depends on the regularity of the rains” (the constantly reiterated suggestion is that rainfall – eg in Africa – is becoming a lot less reliable and predictable and that animals are doomed as a result)


“Antarctica and The Arctic: though they may seem remote to many of us the stability of these icy wastes is crucial to life on the planet. But in just 70 years things have changed at a frightening pace. The polar regions are warming faster than any other part of the planet.”


“Polar bears specialise in hunting seals out on the frozen ocean. But that world is now literally melting bneath their feet. The bears’ limited hunting season is getting shorter….This is already having a profound impact. Cubs are growing up underweight which reduces their chance of survival. Within the lifetime of these cubs the Arctic could be largely free of sea ice.”


“But the Arctic is warming dramatically.”


“Over the last 20 years Greenland has been losing ice – and the rate of loss is accelerating.”


“Without the Humboldt current [which, it is implied, may be disrupted or cease to exist] the coast of Perus would fall silent.”


“All across our planet crucial connections are being disrupted.”


A few early thoughts, which I might enlarge on next week:


  1. Wildlife decline – it is not clear if he is blaming climate change, but there is no evidence that cc is having any widespread effect. Obviously it is habitat loss, intensive farming, urbanisation etc which are mainly responsible. What is he proposing, that we let half the world starve?
  2. Migration and rains – There is zero evidence that long term climate trends have adversely affected migration patterns. Rainfall varies hugely from year to year, vastly swapping any small long term trends. Also multi decadal trends and cycles are much more significant, such as the Sahel droughts of the 1970s, caused by global cooling.
  3. Polar warming – The Arctic is no warmer than in the 1930s. Arctic climate does change faster than the rest of the world, because it is so dry. Temperatures have risen quickly in the last thirty years, just as they did in the 1920s. But they also fell sharply in the 1960s and 70s. In the Antarctic, temperatures have not risen at all, except for the Peninsula. Even there temperatures have not risen for the last thirty years
  4. Polar bears – as we know, polar bears are thriving.
  5. Greenland – again, temperatures were just as high in the 1930s and 40s. Ice melt is not accelerating, indeed the ice sheet is believed to grown in the last two years.
  6. Humboldt current – this is affected by El Nino, but there is no evidence of long term changes from global warming


7. “All across our planet crucial connections are being disrupted.”- As far as climate is concerned, no they are not!



If anyone picks up any other claims, let me know.


In addition to this Netflix series, Attenborough is still doing a one off programme for the BBC specifically on climate change, due out “this spring”



April 8, 2019 at 01:33PM

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