Skip to content

David Lidington Shows His Ignorance About Climate Change

February 20, 2019

By Paul Homewood

 

 

h/t Dennis Ambler

 

A rather mixed up article by Deputy PM, David Lidington, in his regular column for the The Bucks Herald.

It sums up just how little our politicians understand about the issue of climate change:

image

"Last Friday’s climate change demonstration by school pupils has caused controversy. My own view: I’m strongly in favour of young people getting involved in politics and campaigning – but it would have been better had the demonstration been during the weekend or this week’s half-term holiday.

"Whatever the rights and wrongs of the timing, the issue matters to us all. The scientific evidence of climate change is overwhelming. During the twentieth century ocean levels rose 15 cm (nearly 6 inches) with more than half of ocean warming having occurred since 1997.

"Peer-reviewed scientific research shows that the rapid warming is due to the methane, nitrous oxide and fossil fuel emissions we produce.

"Low-lying islands and coastal cities are at risk. Extreme weather events are increasing.

"Ecosystems and agricultural practices are under pressure. Poor countries struggle to adapt.

"Climate change is one of the mix of factors that is driving the large-scale movement of people around the world.

"Physics dictates that, however successful our climate policies today, the climate will keep heating up for some decades to come.

"Since 1990, the UK has cut emissions by more than 40%. More than 400,000 people work in our low carbon businesses and their supply chains. The City of London is a global leader in financing green projects.

We must continue that work and to press for international action. The United States, China and India need to play their part. Otherwise the countries that do the right thing risk losing jobs and business to the laggards.

"We face difficult political choices. Raise fuel taxes to deter driving? But I know many small businesses in Aylesbury and many people in rural areas for whom a car is a necessity, not a luxury, and who couldn’t afford price hikes.

https://www.bucksherald.co.uk/news/mp-david-lidington-s-column-i-m-strongly-in-favour-of-young-people-getting-involved-in-politics-1-8815273

First, I give him credit for calling out the kids who very conveniently bunked off school, rather than using their weekend or holiday to protest. He might have gone further, and asked what they proposed to do themselves to fight climate change, such as walking to school, giving up their holidays abroad or binning their smart phones and other electronic gizmos.

But his grasp of the science leaves a lot to be desired.

He correctly states that sea levels have risen by 15cm during the 20thC, but surely should have pointed out that this rise began long before GHGs had any noticeable impact. Or that the rate of rise since has been steady, with no sign of acceleration.

There is certainly no evidence that “low-lying islands and coastal cities are at risk”, as he claims.

https://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?id=170-053

 

He also claims that “extreme weather events are increasing”. But there is no evidence of this either, contrary to popular myth. Even the IPCC have had to reluctantly admit this.

He then goes on to claim that "Ecosystems and agricultural practices are under pressure. Poor countries struggle to adapt.”

However, the facts disagree with him. Worldwide, agricultural output has remorselessly increased since the 1960s, for a variety of reasons. But fossil fuel powered technology is undoubtedly one of the key factors.

Sure, poor countries always struggle to adapt to bad weather and other problems such as crop disease. But the answer is to bring them out of poverty, not impoverish them further with our obsession about climate change.

 

chart-1

http://www.fao.org/faostat/en/#compare

 

 

As for his comment that “Climate change is one of the mix of factors that is driving the large-scale movement of people around the world”, he is just being silly. Bad weather, especially drought, can certainly lead to migration, but this has always been the case. It is, however, the desire for a better standard of life that is overwhelmingly responsible for migration into Europe and the US, from a wide range of countries that cannot all be suffering from “climate change”.

 

When he states that "Since 1990, the UK has cut emissions by more than 40%. More than 400,000 people work in our low carbon businesses and their supply chains.”, he could have let people know just how much this has cost them.

This year alone, subsidies for renewable energy will cost more then £12bn, about £450 for every household in the country:

image

As for his 400,000 jobs, the vast majority of these have long existed, and have zilch to do with his low carbon agenda. They include jobs such as those in the nuclear power industry or double glazing.

According to the ONS, the number of jobs actually connected to the renewable energy sector is only around 40,000.

But this must be the understatement of the year:

“We must continue that work and to press for international action. The United States, China and India need to play their part. Otherwise the countries that do the right thing risk losing jobs and business to the laggards.”

Since 2008, when the Climate Change Act was passed, UK emissions of CO2 have fallen by 162 MTCO2. In that time, the rest of the World’s have increased by 3225 MTCO2.

If that is not evidence that Lidington’s policy has not worked, I don’t know what is!

He wants a national debate on how as a country we make the right choices. Please bring it on. But we cannot have one until the public are given the full facts, and not the myths that the government wishes to peddle.

51 Comments
  1. stephen kent permalink
    February 20, 2019 11:30 am

    As long as they vote the way I want…

  2. Ajax Ornis permalink
    February 20, 2019 11:35 am

    Make of that what you will.

  3. Ian Phillips permalink
    February 20, 2019 11:47 am

    OK…I believe in education, too, but not indoctrination. And if I had a choice, the voting age would be upped by a couple of years, to 20.

    • February 20, 2019 11:52 am

      I had to be 21. I might up it further.

    • rah permalink
      February 20, 2019 12:02 pm

      Here in the US it was decided during the war in Vietnam that if your old enough to fight and die for our country then your old enough to vote. However, you still aren’t deemed old enough to be responsible when drinking alcoholic beverages until your 21.

  4. Peter Chesterfield permalink
    February 20, 2019 12:04 pm

    Received with thanks.

    Sent from my iPhone

  5. Jackington permalink
    February 20, 2019 12:58 pm

    I’m sorry I don’t see the point of this post. What am I missing?

    • Broadlands permalink
      February 20, 2019 1:11 pm

      Jackington… I agree. The title says “TEST”. What is the test Paul?

      • Gerry, England permalink
        February 20, 2019 1:47 pm

        To see any logic in the thinking of one of our ‘honourable’ Morons of Parliament, perhaps?

      • Sheri permalink
        February 20, 2019 2:19 pm

        It’s not where you can see it.

      • Mike Jackson permalink
        February 20, 2019 3:36 pm

        I would rather like to see some test that removes that damn’ video that has started appearing at the top of the comments! The one I’m currently getting is from Napster and SFR,

      • John F. Hultquist permalink
        February 21, 2019 6:17 am

        Mike J.,
        Napster and SFR, seem to be those companies pushing ads at you; because of your searches/habits on the web. The 2nd one seems to be a French company. In any case, I get neither.

    • February 20, 2019 6:11 pm

      It’s to test something from my end.

      • Otteryd permalink
        February 20, 2019 8:13 pm

        See your pharmacist

  6. Saighdear permalink
    February 20, 2019 1:40 pm

    Well, the “Test” link to comment worked OK today – was that the “Test” ? no problems. other than kinda shivering in the COLD wind outside this past few days despite forecast of Warmth.
    SLUGS on the move – an early crop problem maybe? Perhaps a later spell of Severe cold n Snow n Frost as in 1965 may kill them off – Extinction ? yippee – no slugs ( poor burdies )

    • Sheri permalink
      February 20, 2019 2:21 pm

      Someone else who looks behind the scenes!!

    • February 20, 2019 3:38 pm

      SLUGS on the move: do you mean MPs?

      • dave permalink
        February 20, 2019 5:05 pm

        Beer should be tried first:

  7. Martin Baker permalink
    February 20, 2019 3:29 pm

    Responding to your Test Paul.

    Martin

    ________________________________

  8. Don B permalink
    February 20, 2019 4:13 pm

    It’s a Rorschach Test.  🙂

  9. Curious George permalink
    February 20, 2019 5:04 pm

    Some gangs require an aspiring member to kill someone as a test of their loyalty.

    • Athelstan. permalink
      February 20, 2019 5:49 pm

      In the bigger picture, greens see the test as wiping out western civilization, especially the fossil fuel impetus – the reason why we became successful in the first place, in their zero sums game, the western taxpayer in the US, in the UK, Can, NZ, Aus is always made the loser.

      It’s sorely testing, as are Liddington’s slack jawed, ill thought through, idiot remarks.

  10. February 20, 2019 5:46 pm

    Back in 1938 we had an English master who made no secret of his left wing views. After a By-election he announced that he had changed his loyalty and had voted Liberal. I congratulated him on partially coming to his senses and got a clip round the ear. Those were the days!

  11. It doesn't add up... permalink
    February 20, 2019 8:03 pm

    Should I participate in the test?

  12. Graeme No.3 permalink
    February 20, 2019 9:08 pm

    Received OK in Australia, but here Mr. Lidington has been eclipsed by Richard Marles, described as a Labor Front Bencher. I am not sure what the description means but the phrase two thick planks was my reaction to his claim that the collapse of Australia’s coal industry would be a good thing. He was backed up by the Greens spokesman on energy and the only Green member in the lower House.
    I won’t bore readers with statistics but the short point is that we need compulsory sanity checks on people BEFORE they become members of parliament.

    • Gerry, England permalink
      February 21, 2019 1:51 pm

      Two thick planks have a use – Marles less so it would appear.

  13. Rowland P permalink
    February 20, 2019 10:26 pm

    No question that schools are indoctrinating their pupils with biassed misinformation and it is a Marxist method to use them for political purposes.

    • Fred Streeter permalink
      February 21, 2019 1:06 pm

      Predates Marx by millenia.

  14. avro607 permalink
    February 20, 2019 11:07 pm

    Have been unable to open up your posts lately Paul One that I managed to open,I tried a Test only comment ,just to see if I could still reply-and my reply was there.
    Seeing this post,Itried to open and it did.
    I will await a further post from you to see if I am back in operation,or not.

  15. February 21, 2019 1:00 am

    Hi Paul,
    The test seems to have worked. It opened up the post first time after a few days of having to log in manually.

  16. John F. Hultquist permalink
    February 21, 2019 6:35 am

    Thanks Paul. Well done.

    Does David Lidington have some useful education/training or has he gotten to this point in his career via some way other than merit? A degree in History.
    From his words, and the look — or lack of — in his eyes, I’ll guess there is no one home in there. About 97% of the images on the web are equally clown-like. Ref: Soupy Sales

  17. Ben Vorlich permalink
    February 21, 2019 8:01 am

    Not entirely off topic.
    I bet Harrabin will be on every BBC News bulletin this morning.

    Gas hobs and boilers could be BANNED from new homes within six years to meet carbon emissions targets
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6727647/Gas-hobs-boilers-BANNED-new-homes-six-years-hit-carbon-emissions-targets.html

    • February 21, 2019 10:50 am

      What a hoot, first we had the oil and gas industry campaign against coal, nothing at all to do their bottom line, and now the Green (entirely electric) Blob’s campaign against gas.

      But there is maybe some poetic justice here, as it will be the mostly young buyers of new homes who will be deprived of low cost heating and cooking.

    • Harry Passfield permalink
      February 21, 2019 11:53 am

      Ben, Harribin was on R4 this morning explaining how banning ALL gas heating/cooking would reduce UK emissions by 14%. That is, 0.28% (UK) overall. At what cost, ffs?

      • Harry Passfield permalink
        February 21, 2019 11:54 am

        0.28% represents UK’s contribution to WW emissions in gas heating/cooking terms.

      • Harry Passfield permalink
        February 21, 2019 11:57 am

        I meant to say: banning heating/cooking on gas would mean a reduction in the UK’s contribution to WW emissions by 0.28%

  18. George Lawson permalink
    February 21, 2019 8:32 am

    This man is a prize example of the growing number of stupid Members of Parliament who have little ability to think for themselves and joins the likes of Lord Deben, Michael Gove and the increasingly ridiculous Green movement, many of whom see their allegiance to ‘the cause’ as a lucrative means of a second income supplementing their MPs salaries. Until we get these people out of governing our affairs we have no hope. Until this boil on the arse of progress is lanced once and for all and the Green movement forced into obscurity, I’m afraid the nation is destined to be brought to its knees.

  19. A Norwich Tory permalink
    February 21, 2019 8:36 am

    Lidington wouldn’t have had the time to sit down and write this himself, so it will have been a staffer, but Lidington will have approved it before it was sent. It shows how bad politicians are at questioning old ideas and absorbing new ones.

    • dave permalink
      February 21, 2019 10:28 am

      “…Lidington…education…”

      I am embarassed to say he went to my school – admittedly ten years after me.

      “Haberdashers'” was a peculiar institution. Unable to make it as a copy of a second-rate Public School, it changed weirdly into a copy of a second-rate Oxbridge College, full of rather unhappy, pretentious, little owls and poseurs.

      One consequence of the pressure to get into real Oxbridge Colleges, by way of Scholarships, was that premature specialization was quietly encouraged, even though the curriculum was ostensibly broad. Long before O Levels, clever boys were being groomed to be “Mathematicians” or “Historians” or whatever. If you were destined to be Arts Side in the 6th Form, you, unconsciously, could not wait to forget all scientific thinking; and if you were destined to be Science Side you could not wait to become a Philistine.

      In that entire, large, school, first my older brother and then myself were the ONLY pupils EVER who deliberately took lessons from sympathetic Masters on both sides of the divide in the 6th Form. I can remember the almost hysterical letter from the Headmaster to my Father when informed that my brother insisted on being entered for subjects at ‘A Level’ from both sides.

      The relevance to Lidington and his mind is, that I can tell you with absolute certainty that, as he “did History,” he will have deliberately forgotten every scrap of practical or scientific knowledge ever imparted to him. And the worst of it is that he will never know he has an incomplete mind.

  20. Phoenix44 permalink
    February 21, 2019 10:21 am

    The success of non-science in getting accepted as science is a warning to all of us. We see the same thing in Brexit, where the dire warnings of catastrophe are not part of any official forecast by the Treasury of BoE (whose actual forecasts are not very credible anyway) but are taken as “real” by many people.

    This really is a fake news problem, whereby hundreds of claims are pumped out every week by unscrupulous think tanks, activists groups and formerly reputable organisations like The lancet that have been taken over by activists. The BBC, Guardian and others report them all and never report the refutations.

    And so we end up with government ministers parroting what is nothing more than activist propaganda as fact.

  21. Vanessa permalink
    February 21, 2019 10:36 am

    Poor little ignorant boy !! It does not take much to find out how much CO2 there is in the atmosphere and that would tell him that it is such a minute percentage that it is crazy to give a “few drops” so much power the ability to run the world’s climate. Still, no politician has a brain – we have seen that in the idiotic games our Westminster plays with Brexit !

  22. Europeanonion permalink
    February 21, 2019 11:01 am

    When rising sea levels are seen as an issues it is invariably Pacific islands that seem to be the imperilled ones. Perhaps the Scilly Isles aren’t exotic enough to invite such a phenomenon? I still advocate a breathing pause day where every one of us holds our breath for five minutes to reduce the output of contentious effluvia. As for methane, the vast nomadic herds of mankind must cast cows into the shade.

  23. Harry Passfield permalink
    February 21, 2019 11:45 am

    His article reads very much like a letter I received From Claire Perry: vacuous and light on true facts (no references) and probably written by one of her Green staff.

  24. rah permalink
    February 21, 2019 11:48 am

    I mean really! How can you reason with anyone that believes that cow farts are an “existential threat”? All you can do is defeat them.

  25. Athelstan. permalink
    February 21, 2019 11:59 am

    yuh, most coastal cities/towns/ports do tend to be ‘low lying’ innit david luv?

    And besides nothing is set in this life, cor the earth can move you know, so do the tides, it’s always been exciting times living on the coast cheek by jowl with the briny, that’s a risk human beings assess and come to their own conclusions, since about ± 2 mill’ years ago.

    Nothing new under the sun diddy david unless you include mankind’s post modernist effort to rewrite the laws of gravity ……………..its all different now see, dey is making nu rools up as they make it all up, ref:

    […] CO2 would go down. And the reason for that is when the temperature went up, the whole biosphere revved up and emitted CO2, and we had more CO2 in the atmosphere. So we understand that process.

    In the post-industrial age, the opposite is true. Increasing CO2 in the atmosphere is leading to increased temperature. So two different things happened, one pre-industrial, where temperature was driving the CO2, and post-industrial, where CO2 was driving temperature.

    end quote. here

    same earth but two mechanisms, wow! so bloody well convenient is that – no?

    Cultural Marxism wot did it………..it’s a make believe world now, and david lidington believes in the green faeries.

  26. Vernon E permalink
    February 21, 2019 12:12 pm

    Who the heck is this Lidington geezer? A year ago I had never heard of him but now he sits at The Prime Minister’s right hand. You just have to watch his smirking patronising expression to know not to trust him (that’s the least offensive I can think of).

  27. hedles permalink
    February 21, 2019 12:50 pm

    Paul, you post the NOAA data showing that, according to that record, global average sea levels rose approx. 15cm during the 20th century.

    Christopher Monckton stated in his address at an Ideacity conference in Toronto in June 2014 , that “sea level may not be rising at all” (@~17:22 in the video) – due to the same kind of data tampering that you identified in your blog just over a year later in the GISS data on South America. Monckton’s graph (@~17:30 in the video) shows the rising trend according to data “After ‘global isostatic adjustment’ ” versus the slightly falling trend in the “Original real-world measurements”.

    It must be said that the period of Monckton’s data is about an order of magnitude and a half shorter than the NOAA data that you display, but the question needs to be asked, “Is the same ‘isostatic adjustment’ responsible for the 15cm/century rise or is there really something more substantial behind it?”

  28. HotScot permalink
    February 21, 2019 1:41 pm

    It might be worth pointing out to David Lidington that according to The Lancet, between 50% and 70% of scientific studies cannot be replicated redering them worthless.

    I wonder which 70% of climate science Mr. Lidington would like to chuck in the bin?

    • Gerry, England permalink
      February 21, 2019 1:55 pm

      That’s if you can get them to release the background data to be able to replicate or verify their claims. Any study not doing so should be struck from the record.

  29. Gerry, England permalink
    February 21, 2019 1:58 pm

    Getting the full facts to the public is the big problem given that the media laps up all the green crap and is also only capable of personality based reporting as Brexit has shown. Nothing exists until they get a quote from a source, which they then run to somebody else for their view. Journalism? Virtually dead now.

  30. Mack permalink
    February 21, 2019 2:05 pm

    Off topic Paul, but Guido Fawkes does a nice job today on his blog of putting the boot into Debden’s troughing antics with Drax. Worth a look. Between the scientifically ignorant and the financially bent is it any wonder that we all despair of our political masters?

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: