Towards the end of last week a research paper published in the journal Nature suggested that global warming would stop until at least 2015 because of natural variations in the climate.
The fact that this was published in a prestige journal means it cannot be ignored, although much of the ostrich-like media made a brave attempt. So what are we to make of it? The Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change already admits there has been no warming since 1998, so that will make almost two decades without warming.
One of the reasons that Nature may have published this paper is that its authors say that global warming will resume after the lull. A spokesman for the Hadley Centre said predictions for a decade ahead would always to some extent be uncertain, which makes you worry about the BBC, whose website states that the UK temperature will increase by 4C by 2080. Well, I guess the BBC knows everything.
Meanwhile global warming enthusiast Ken Livingstone has been defeated as mayor of London in what was described by the London Evening Standard as “the first election in British history to be decided largely on environmental issues”.
Victor Boris Johnson is known for not following the party line on climate change, which is one good reason for electing him – not because of the view he takes, but because he is unafraid to stand firm against all the unpleasant and irrational pressure that comes from green lobbyists.
What kind of pressure? Well, the Green Party attacks his “dinosaur views”, among other things; and Jeremy Leggett of Solarcentury calls him a climate change denier and fears for the “physical security of the city under the assault of unmitigated global warming”, whatever that means. More understandably, and extremely revealingly, Mr Leggett also fears for the jobs “of all the hundreds who work for us”. Solarcentury is a company specialising in things like solar panels, in case you were wondering. Nothing wrong with that, of course.
Jonathan Porritt, of the Sustainable Development Commission, had called for “all the environmental NGOs to rally the troops in London in a pro-Ken campaign” describing any victory by Boris as a “massive setback”.
All heartening stuff, but what does Boris say? “The hypocrisy of the Europeans over Kyoto is staggering. They attack America in hysterical terms, and yet the 15 EU countries have never come close to meeting their own eight per cent target for cuts in carbon dioxide emissions. They have not even agreed which countries should cut the most. If America were to meet its Kyoto targets now, it would require a cut of 30 per cent in emissions, and how, exactly, is that supposed to work in the current economic downturn?”
Clearly a dangerous man.
Incidentally, while on the subject of BBC objectivity or lack of it, I understand that it recently featured on its website a video showing two cars crashing when braking heavily after spotting a Hertfordshire Police speed camera van. The video was first shown on BBC News 24 to illustrate the alleged dangers of speeding. It later appeared on the BBC News website, but by the next day it had mysteriously disappeared.
The BBC told an interested inquirer from the Association of British Drivers that the video was missing from their website “because of a technical problem”.
However, the BBC did do viewers a service by showing climate change evangelist Dr David Viner at his least convincing (which is saying something) when discussing the need to sacrifice miles of Norfolk to the sea. Asked what he would say to the people living in the affected area, Dr Viner – of the University of East Anglia and now, heaven help us, advising Natural England – backed hastily almost out of shot while saying: “I’m not going to answer that.”
Can’t seem to find that on the BBC website either.