BBC: "propaganda machine for climate change zealots"

Blows the lid off the BBC

In another damning article in the UK’s Daily Mail, former BBC newsreader Peter Sissons blows the lid off the institutional climate change bias at the BBC. The results are truly shocking, if not entirely surprising. For “BBC” you can substitute most other news organisations, ABC, Fairfax, AFP… Bias against climate realism is endemic in the left-leaning media, it’s only a question of degree:

For me, though, the most worrying aspect of political correctness was over the story that recurred with increasing frequency during my last ten years at the BBC — global warming (or ‘climate change’, as it became known when temperatures appeared to level off or fall slightly after 1998).

From the beginning I was unhappy at how one-sided the BBC’s coverage of the issue was, and how much more complicated the climate system was than the over-simplified two-minute reports that were the stock-in-trade of the BBC’s environment correspondents.

These, without exception, accepted the UN’s assurance that ‘the science is settled’ and that human emissions of carbon dioxide threatened the world with catastrophic climate change. Environmental pressure groups could be guaranteed that their press releases, usually beginning with the words ‘scientists say . . . ’ would get on air unchallenged.

On one occasion, after the inauguration of Barack Obama as president in 2009, the science correspondent of Newsnight actually informed viewers ‘scientists calculate that he has just four years to save the world’. What she didn’t tell viewers was that only one alarmist scientist, NASA’s James Hansen, had said that.

My interest in climate change grew out of my concern for the failings of BBC journalism in reporting it. In my early and formative days at ITN, I learned that we have an obligation to report both sides of a story. It is not journalism if you don’t. It is close to propaganda.

The BBC’s editorial policy on climate change, however, was spelled out in a report by the BBC Trust — whose job is to oversee the workings of the BBC in the interests of the public — in 2007. This disclosed that the BBC had held ‘a high-level seminar with some of the best scientific experts and has come to the view that the weight of evidence no longer justifies equal space being given to the opponents of the consensus’.

The error here, of course, was that the BBC never at any stage gave equal space to the opponents of the consensus.

But the Trust continued its pretence that climate change dissenters had been, and still would be, heard on its airwaves. ‘Impartiality,’ it said, ‘always requires a breadth of view, for as long as minority opinions are coherently and honestly expressed, the BBC must give them appropriate space.’

In reality, the ‘appropriate space’ given to minority views on climate change was practically zero.
Moreover, we were allowed to know practically nothing about that top-level seminar mentioned by the BBC Trust at which such momentous conclusions were reached. Despite a Freedom of Information request, they wouldn’t even make the guest list public.


Recipe for a climate scare story

Is the IPCC a corrupt political alarmist machine? Do polar bears shit in the Arctic?

OK folks, hope you’re all ready to put on your chef’s hats and venture to the kitchen to concoct a climate scare story. Firstly, we must have the right ingredients:

  • cuddly furry creature (in this case, a polar bear will do nicely)
  • a large serving of climate change hysteria
  • a tipping point or two (to taste)
  • a half-baked computer model
  • generous helping of hyperbole

Mix them all together, et voilà! Now feed to a desperate mainstream media organisation (the BBC) which will swallow anything.

Climate change will trigger a dramatic and sudden decline in the number of polar bears, a new study has concluded.

The research is the first to directly model how changing climate will affect polar bear reproduction and survival.

Based on what is known of polar bear physiology, behaviour and ecology, it predicts pregnancy rates will fall and fewer bears will survive fasting during longer ice-free seasons.

These changes will happen suddenly as bears pass a ‘tipping point’. [Do not pass Go, do not collect $200]

Dr [Peter] Molnar, Professor Andrew Derocher and colleagues from the University of Alberta and York University, Toronto focused on the physiology, behaviour and ecology of polar bears, and how these might change as temperatures increase.

“We developed a model for the mating ecology of polar bears. The model estimates how many females in a population will be able to find a mate during the mating season, and thus get impregnated.”

“In both cases, the expected changes in reproduction and survival were non-linear,” explains Dr Molnar.

“That is, as the climate warms, we may not see any substantial effect on polar bear reproduction and survival for a while, up until some threshold is passed, at which point reproduction and survival will decline dramatically and very rapidly.”

<sarc> I wonder if these computer models are as good as the IPCC’s climate models? </sarc>

Read the rest here, although to be honest, I really wouldn’t bother. (h/t WUWT)

BBC: pension fund invested in climate companies

Sunday Express

If you’ve ever wondered why the BBC has been so biased towards the global warming movement, perhaps the UK Express has provided the answer. It appears that huge swathes of the BBC’s own massive pension fund is invested in companies “whose success depends on the theory [of AGW] being widely accepted.”

The corporation is under investigation after being inundated with complaints that its editorial coverage of climate change is biased in favour of those who say it is a man-made phenomenon.

The £8billion pension fund is likely to come under close scrutiny over its commitment to promote a low-carbon economy while struggling to reverse an estimated £2billion deficit.

Concerns are growing that BBC journalists and their bosses regard disputed scientific theory that climate change is caused by mankind as “mainstream” while huge sums of employees’ money is invested in companies whose success depends on the theory being widely accepted.

The fund, which has 58,744 members, accounts for about £8 of the £142.50 licence fee and the proportion looks likely to rise while programme budgets may have to be cut to help reduce the deficit.

The BBC is the only media organisation in Britain whose pension fund is a member of the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change, which has more than 50 members across Europe.

Its chairman is Peter Dunscombe, also the BBC’s Head of Pensions Investment.

Prominent among its recent campaigns was a call for a “strong and binding” global agreement on climate change – one that fell on deaf ears after the UN climate summit in Copenhagen failed to reach agreement on emissions targets and a cut in greenhouse gases.

So if you were being cynical, you may think the BBC plugs the alarmist line in order to ensure the security of its own investments, which aren’t doing so well at the moment. Sounds like a serious conflict, undermining the Corporation’s editorial impartiality (and probably breaching its own guidelines).

Read it here. (h/t Jonathan S-B)

MUST SEE: BBC Newsnight: Climate change scepticism hotting up in Australia

BBC’s flagship current affairs programme, Newsnight, has an extended section on the changing political climate in Australia:

H/t: Tom S

BBC: "More people are now doubters than firm believers."

At least in the UK, the media are beginning to cover the shonky science stories, and public opinion is reacting. As the BBC reports, public support for the alarmist cause is haemorrhaging fast:

The number of British people who are sceptical about climate change is rising, a poll for BBC News suggests.

The Populus poll of 1,001 adults found 25% did not think global warming was happening, a rise of 8% since a similar poll was conducted in November.

The percentage of respondents who said climate change was a reality had fallen from 83% in November to 75% this month.

And only 26% of those asked believed climate change was happening and “now established as largely man-made”.

The findings are based on interviews carried out on 3-4 February.

In November 2009, a similar poll by Populus – commissioned by the Times newspaper – showed that 41% agreed that climate change was happening and it was largely the result of human activities.

Dropping like a stone

“It is very unusual indeed to see such a dramatic shift in opinion in such a short period,” Populus managing director Michael Simmonds told BBC News.

“The British public are sceptical about man’s contribution to climate change – and becoming more so,” he added.

“More people are now doubters than firm believers.”

Whereas here in Australia, the ABC and Fairfax have been doing their very best to sweep it all under the carpet. Unfortunately, the carpet now has a massive bulge in the middle, which nobody can miss. Public opinion here will follow suit in due course, making Rudd and Wong’s blinkered, headlong charge towards an ETS even more ridiculous.

Read it here.

Andrew Neil grills Met Office head over forecasts

(H/t Climate Change Fraud)

The boss of the Met Office, who recently got a 25% performance related bonus, gets minced by Andrew Neil on the BBC:

BBC to be investigated over climate science bias

BBC: impartial climate reporting

And not a moment too soon. The Daily Mail reports that the BBC Trust, the broadcaster’s governing body, has launched a major review of its science coverage after complaints about bias, especially on climate matters:

The BBC Trust today announced it would carry out the probe into the ‘accuracy and impartiality’ of its output in this increasingly controversial area.

The review comes after repeated criticism of the broadcaster’s handling of green issues. It has been accused of acting like a cheerleader for the theory that climate change is a man-made phenomenon.

Critics have claimed that it has not fairly represented the views of sceptics of the widely-held belief that humans are responsible for environmental changes such as global warming.

Last year a leading climate change sceptic claimed his views had been deliberately misrepresented by the BBC.

Lord Monckton, a former adviser to Margaret Thatcher, said he had been made to look like a ‘potty peer’ on a TV programme that ‘was a one-sided polemic for the new religion of global warming’.

In 2007 the then editor of Newsnight hit out at the BBC’s stance on climate change.

Peter Barron said it was ‘not the corporation’s job to save the planet’. His comments were backed up by other senior news executives who feared the BBC was ‘leading’ the audience, rather than giving them ‘information’.

Mr Barron had claimed the BBC had gone beyond its remit by planning an entire day of programmes dedicated to highlighting environmental fears.

His comments had come after the broadcaster had already been accused of not being objective on green issues and of handing over the airwaves to campaigners. In 2007 it had devoted a whole day of programming to the Live Earth concerts.

I wouldn’t hold your breath (except to reduce your carbon footprint, of course).

Read it here. (h/t Climate Realists)

BBC: Clive James on climate change

Climate sense

Climate sense

Our most famous expat writes on climate change in the BBC magazine:

Over the last 10 years we have heard a lot about how civilisation would be in trouble if it didn’t soon do something drastic about global warming. But this impressive message tended to sound less impressive as time went on. It wasn’t just that the globe uncooperatively declined to get warmer during the last 10 years.

It was that the language of alarm wore out its welcome as it became ever more assertive about what had not yet happened.

The brief, unarguably still hot period, when the world had somehow refused to grow any hotter was soon explained, although it seemed strange that it had not been predicted.

The world, when it resumed warming again would heat up by so many degrees, or so many more degrees than that, and within 10, 20, 25 years – within a single Hermie – there would be the corpses of fried polar bears floating past your penthouse window.

According to the media, scientists were agreed, the science was settled, science said, that all this would happen. The media promoted this settled science, and the politicians went along with the media. The whole deal had the UN seal of approval.

The coming catastrophe that had to be averted wasn’t exactly like knowing when the asteroid would arrive so you could send Bruce Willis, but unless we did something, irreversible damage, if not certain doom, was only a Hermie or two away.

Today, after recent events at the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit, that supposedly settled science is still the story, but the story is in question. Suddenly there are voices to pronounce that the reputation of science will lie in ruins for the next 50 years.

Read it here. (h/t Climate Realists)

AGW scientist calls Marc Morano an "a-hole" on live TV

As Anthony Watts puts it: Scientists Behaving Badly. Here’s the clip, yet again, on another flagship BBC current affairs programme, Newsnight (I wonder how long it will be before we get the same level of debate on Climategate on the ABC?):

Admittedly, Morano is annoying, but it’s no excuse for Andrew Watson’s behaviour.

See Morano’s page on this here.

BBC flagship current affairs programme runs "Climategate" debate

Debating CRU

Debating CRU

BBC radio’s flagship current affairs programme, Today, has aired a 12 minute debate with Jonathan Porritt, sceptic Philip Stott [amazingly], and the BBC’s environment correspondent, Richard Black.

As Biased-BBC puts it:

Porritt admitted through gritted teeth that there was something to investigate in Climategate (though of course still maintaining that “most scientists” say there is a consensus), while Stott skillfully painted the picture of why there are major doubts about the causation of warming, and that taxation of CO2 would not in any case solve the problem. (source)

Listen here.

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