Skip to content

Bob Ward Loses Again (And Again)!

November 7, 2020

By Paul Homewood



As well as David Rose’s report attacking the BBC Attenborough programme, Bob Ward also had two complaints against the Telegraph rejected by IPSO last month.

One was this piece by Bjorn Lomborg, the other was a Telegraph editorial which made similar points:




Ward’s complaints centred around the following claims by Lomborg:


1) Renewable energy had only increased by 1.1 per cent since 1992, from meeting 13.1 per cent of the world’s energy needs in 1992 to 14.2 per cent today

2) The transition from fossil fuels to low carbon alternatives would be “incredibly expensive”.

In particular, Lomborg noted that the UN’s climate scenario modelling predicted that the Net Zero scenario would cost 5.3% of GDP globally– an annual cost of £187 billion for the UK by 2050, much more than the £50bn claimed by the Committee on Climate Change.

3) These costs could double if the transition was not done efficiently.

4) A New Zealand government commissioned report found that costs could rise to 16% of GDP, equivalent to £12 trillion cumulatively in the UK by 2050.

5) According to the UN Climate Panel, the impact of global warming by the 2070s will be the equivalent to a 0.2-2% loss in average income.

Ward countered that:

1) Renewable energy had increased by 140% since 1992, (which of course missed the point that this was from an already tiny base)

2) Reducing costs meant that renewable energy had become more competitive rather than “incredibly expensive”.

3) He disputed the cost of £50bn from the CCC, and all of the other costings shown by Lomborg.

4) He also disputed the UN cost for the impact of warming.


IPSO ruled that:

1) It was perfectly accurate to report that the share of renewables had only risen by 1.1%

2) It was not in dispute that achieving zero carbon emission by 2050 would cost billions of pounds; it was not misleading to describe this as being “extremely expensive”

3) The estimated cost of 5.3% of GDP was correctly derived from the official Shared Socioeconomic Pathways study, which has been adopted extensively by the IPCC and used in its research and predictions on climate change. It was therefore not misleading to describe this as “UN modelling”.

4) Two separate studies backed up the doubling of costs claim.

5) The New Zealand study had not been “misreported”, as Ward claimed. Instead it had been correctly reported. IPSO said that “the complainant appeared to be referring to a different source in making his complaint”.

6) The UN report on the economic impact of warming had also been correctly reported.


Game, Set and Match!!

  1. Harry Passfield permalink
    November 7, 2020 12:17 pm

    New balls for Mr Ward!!

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      November 7, 2020 1:29 pm

      Rather, drop him from the seeding.

    • November 8, 2020 12:06 pm

      If I was a bagillionaire I wouldn’t employ a troll like that. I think I’d actually pick a smart person who had more chance of making their sophist arguments stick.

  2. November 7, 2020 12:17 pm

    “In particular, Lomborg noted that the UN’s climate scenario modelling predicted that the Net Zero scenario would cost 5.3% of GDP globally”

    Not to mention the flaws in the net zero accounting.

  3. November 7, 2020 12:36 pm

    The believers HATE empiricism. They avoid numbers like the plague for a very good reason because their mad ideas will quickly be shown for what they are when challenged by empiricism. When they do use numbers they are plucked from the air. Do you think it is any coincidence that part of the multiheaded marxist hydra which is attacking Western culture, economics and our very civilization is trying to push the twisted notion that mathematics is a white construct and should be ignored? .Incredibly in that context I have seen that argument put forward to mean that black people should not be marked down for getting a wrong answer when doing a calculation. This is real and is why feelings are being touted as more important than empirical data based facts. Ever had a blank look from a believer when you put forward numbers and sources to counter their emotional based argument? I had a current science PhD tell me to my face that the numbers do not matter, preferring to follow the logic free view that as CO2 “can” retain heat that automatically makes it responsible for “all” warming. I kid you not! The lack of adult reasoning, of Critical Thinking is breath taking.

    • John Cullen permalink
      November 7, 2020 1:09 pm

      Hello PMFB,

      I have argued elsewhere on Paul’s site that, to use your terminology, the multi-headed hydra attacking the West is not Marxist as you have suggested above; rather it is an alliance of green organisations and large capitalist corporations that supply the green energy systems for which we pay twice – once through rent-seeking subsidies for the very expensive capital equipment and a second time through excessive electricity bills because the renewable energy is anything but cheap.

      This alliance between green organisations and big business is an incomplete form of corporatism – incomplete because it does not include the other stakeholders/interested parties such as energy consumers and tax payers.

      The importance of the distinction I am making between Marxism and corporatism is that, as Ref. 1 shows, the states that have come closest to the corporatist ideal are Italy under fascism and Portugal under Salazar; these states are usually regarded as being of the Right or far Right.

      Thus, while I agree with you that, on first sight, the attack on the West appears to come from the Left; on closer examination it comes from the Right or far-Right. The way that renewable energy sources take large amounts of money from ordinary people and transfers it to large corporations confirms this diagnosis.

      The above false-flagging (i.e. making the Right appear as though it is so people-friendly and thus of the Left) is the only clever thing that I deduce in this sorry state of affairs.

      1. Chris Cook, “A Dictionary of Historical Terms”, 3rd ed., Macmillan Press, 1998, at page 92.


      • HotScot permalink
        November 7, 2020 3:31 pm

        John Cullen

        Just who considers fascism of the right, or far right?

        fascism was largely invented by Mussolini as an authoritarian state, typical of the left. Mussolini was a prominent member of the Italian left before he was kicked out for his extreme views. He joined the right and was promptly ejected from there as well.

        With its foundation in authoritarianism, and its predisposition to violence, the fact that it partnered with Corporate Italy to achieve its objectives is irrelevant as Mussolini would undoubtedly have turned on it had success been achieved.

        The common denominator between all the most despicable regimes on earth has been authoritarianism. Who the regime partners with to achieve that objective is irrelevant, the ultimate objective is always the same left wing ideology of total control of a community.

      • November 7, 2020 5:46 pm

        Hi John, the “multi headed hydra I refer to is everything stemming from Critical Theory aka The Frankfurt School, was very definitely marxist funded by Soviet Russia when Lenin got upset that revolution in Russia was not repeated elsewhere in Europe. Its remit was to find ways to bring down European Democracies from within by attacking all of the pillars of society. The Green Blob and its subdivisions I referred to as only one strand of the general attack on our society. Any tool which seems to give leverage and makes reasonable people stop and think as being fair and reasonable at face value is adopted. Intersectionality, white privilege, race, slavery, sex, gay rights, trans rights, equality feminaziism, and the latest marxist manifestation BLM ( as well as the Green Blob). They all begin with what appears to be a legitimate issue and when that issue finds a chink in societies armour then the original concept and indeed people pushing the cause are taken over and replaced by people with another agenda. Pushing these fraudulent agendas makes space for unscrupulous people who seem to make strange bedfellows.The Lefties in the UN have said on vox and in writing that they are about redistribution of wealth. My favorite bet noir Ørestad are one of the “chancer” organisations who saw a way to make easy money producing next to nothing in return. In respect of the Green Blob, the weasels pushing wind and its poorer cousin solar cannot believe their luck being above reproach, behave as they wish environmentally and given almost a blank cheque to write themselves. Listen to ANY of these groups and after the whining you will hear their solution to fix every problem on the planet which is invariably the end of capitalism and the imposition of socialism for everyone. The Green Blob is barely green on the outside and dark red on the inside.

      • Phoenix44 permalink
        November 8, 2020 9:27 am

        The Right is essentially Libertarian – small state, low taxes, free markets, individual freedoms, choice.

        Nothing that you describe is that. And moving further Right than that cannot possibly become a totalitarian state as per fascism – it would have to be a tiny or non-existent state. Nobel Prize winners such as Hayek described fascism as the sister of socialism because both are totalitarian. Peoplexeanting to make money and happy to rip people off to do so are neither Right nor Left.

    • Broadlands permalink
      November 7, 2020 1:11 pm

      “the Net Zero scenario would cost 5.3% of GDP globally– an annual cost of £187 billion for the UK by 2050,”

      Using the Jim Hansen Bill McKibben 350 ppm goal would mean a Net-Zero reduction of 65 ppm today. That’s about 500 gigatons of CO2. £187 billion divided by 500 billion is £0.37 per metric ton. A very unrealistically low value for carbon capture and geological storage.

      The real world cost per ton stored would be very much more. No way around that.

      • Nancy & John Hultquist permalink
        November 7, 2020 6:20 pm


        There are three aspects of getting to 350 ppm CO2.
        1. Stop adding human contributions, or slow it significantly;
        2. Take CO2 out of the atmosphere mechanically/chemically;
        3. Wait for Earth-processes to remove and
        sequester CO2 at a rate that will bring the number down.

        Costs and timing of 1 & 2 are wild guesses.
        #3 currently seems to be going the wrong way,
        but likely is the only way.

        Northern Hemisphere ppm declines in this winter season, so this week shows low near 408; but the average for the year will be close to 412; high was 417+ in late May. [Mauna Loa, Hawaii – good agreement with other NH reporting stations]

        If CO2 started dropping at the rate of 2 ppm, the “safe-350” level would be reached in ~2052; at 1 ppm decline, ~ 2083.

  4. November 7, 2020 12:41 pm

    I have also seen the “impartial” BBC often defer to comment from “experts” in the Grantham
    Institute NEVER putting their views into context or explaining what this institute is. Well what a surprise because the BBC does so like to tout their pet views with faux authority figures giving their views and weight to the leftist argument.

    • John Cullen permalink
      November 7, 2020 1:12 pm

      Yes, PMFB, the BBC is a large corporation that is supporting the renewable energy agenda i.e. the BBC is corporatism in practice – and we will pay handsomely for them (i.e. for the BBC and for the renewable energy!).


      • Broadlands permalink
        November 7, 2020 1:25 pm

        John… It might be worth noting that renewable energy takes no CO2 from the atmosphere as required by the Net-zero goals. Indeed, biofuels add to it being 90% fossil fuel.

      • John Cullen permalink
        November 7, 2020 3:47 pm

        Hello Broadlands,

        Yes, they don’t remove CO2 – and in addition they are hugely expensive in terms of financial costs (as I noted above) and hugely expensive in terms of resource usage as is shown in Fig. 2 on page 4 of professor Kelly’s paper linked here (sorry it’s rather long!):-

        Click to access lessons_from_technology_development_for_energy_and_sustainability.pdf

        Matters are even worse for the bill payer and tax payer as the following question, posed by professor Dieter Helm [Ref. 1], seems to have only one response:-
        “Moreover, what is the question to which offshore wind and rooftop solar are supposed to be the answer? It can’t be global climate change – wind farms in the North Sea will make no difference to climate change. They will not even make much difference to Britain’s carbon footprint.”
        That question seems to be, “How can we pander to environmentalist sentiments while extracting the maximum return from our investment?”

        How cool is that for a wheeze?

        The situation outlined above speaks to the weakness of our Western democracies which, largely through the power of (secret) lobbying [Ref. 2], have fallen prey to rent-seeking within the Iron Triangle [Ref. 3] of government bureaucracies, special interest groups, and elected representatives.

        1. Dieter Helm, “The Carbon Crunch”, revised and updated, Yale, 2015, especially at page 7.
        2. T. Cave & A. Rowell, “A Quiet Word – lobbying, crony capitalism and broken politics in Britain”, Vintage, 2015.
        3. A. Balisacan et al. (editors), “Sustainable economic development: resources, environment and institutions”, Academic Press, 2014, especially the paper by Lee H. Endress, ‘Public policy: prosustainabilty or not?’, at pages 57-58.


  5. November 7, 2020 3:33 pm

    When will backward Bob stop embarrassing himself?

    • Curious George permalink
      November 7, 2020 4:11 pm

      Doesn’t he embarrass us more?

    • Robert Jones permalink
      November 7, 2020 5:21 pm

      Well he has a wealthy backer so it doesn’t cost him anything, but importantly, it keeps his name known, even if he is wrong 100% all of the time. The truth is not actually essential where unscrupulous activists are concerned.

  6. John Cullen permalink
    November 7, 2020 3:55 pm

    Sorry the link to prof. Kelly’s did not work. Try searching at
    for his paper “Lessons from technology development for energy and sustainability” in MRS (=Materials research Society) Energy & Sustainability : A Review Journal,
    page 1 of 13, 2016.

    The following tag may help once inside the web site:-


  7. Broadlands permalink
    November 7, 2020 4:21 pm

    John.. “Yes, they don’t remove CO2 – and in addition they are hugely expensive in terms of financial costs (as I noted above) and hugely expensive in terms of resource usage..”

    And don’t forget that renewables will have to replace the arable land being used for growing food and even biofuel ethanol. And when they wear out or break down there is no place to put them, including all the rusting vehicles that used carbon fuels. The entire thing is an unfortunate plan foisted off on us only because of models predicting a dire future. There is no climate emergency without dire forecasts. We should have learned that from the global cooling crisis 50 years ago.

  8. StephenP permalink
    November 7, 2020 4:36 pm

    I see Harrabin Is telling us the rules adjust follow for a carbon free future.–54832236

    He seems to be impressed by the recommendations of the Citizens Assembly.

  9. Nancy & John Hultquist permalink
    November 7, 2020 6:23 pm

    USA seems to have elected Joe “save the climate” Biden.
    Expect immediate reduction of global warming, back to 1850 temperature.

    • Mack permalink
      November 7, 2020 7:56 pm

      I hope you guys have got a decent back up generator, a huge log pile, kerosene lamps etc etc. Winter is coming and it’s looking grim for all of us in the West with the rampage of green lunacy running through our political class. Good luck!

    • November 8, 2020 9:33 am

      You mean they elected a trojan horse to shoe horn a very dangerous woman into the White House. It is said you get the government you deserve but dear god…….We can now look forward to a ringside seat to watch the destruction of the hydrocarbon industry upon which all our metrics of civilization depend and the deliberate and decisive division of society into pathetic groups with perceived/imaginary victimhood touted as a badge of honour. America is no longer the leader of the Free World but the culmination of a marxist dream instigated by Lenin with the Frankfurt School between 1918 and 1933

  10. ThinkingScientist permalink
    November 7, 2020 8:35 pm

    The greatest danger to western democracies is not climate change, its the belief in climate change.

    • Mack permalink
      November 8, 2020 12:45 am

      You are right.

    • November 8, 2020 9:23 am

      More precisely the belief in “man made” climate change as if 1. Climate did not change until yesterday and 2. if change is grudgingly accepted then the rate of change started to increase yesterday. The obvious question is, where is the statistically significant empirical data to support either of these claims?

  11. cajwbroomhill permalink
    November 7, 2020 8:49 pm

    Those in charge in GB omit to tell us that the greenhouse gas output from the UK being of neglible amount proportionate to the planet’s total and with the bulk being emitted by non-curbing nations, we could and must opt out of decarbonisation.
    Or are the mass of our politicians unaware of that?

    In either event, they let us and themselves down, also by wilfully ignoring those “denialists” pointing out these truths.

    • Mack permalink
      November 8, 2020 1:11 am

      Yes, GB & N.I. contribute @1% of global man made GG emissions. Such man made emissions vary between 3 and 6% of the total of all global GG emissions, the majority of which come from natural sources, e.g. the oceans, forests, phytoplankton, volcanos etc etc Thus, UK emissions, contribute less than a tenth of 1% of all planetary emissions. We could, as our leaders seem to want, return to the Stone Age tomorrow in relation to energy production, and the planet wouldn’t even notice that we were gone. Alas, in the process, we would condemn many of the poorest and most vulnerable members of our society to increasing penury and early deaths. Unfortunately, there are few, even amongst, so called conservtive politicians, who have yet been able to join the dots and realise the futility of their position.

      • November 8, 2020 9:19 am

        Another way to look at the numbers Mack. The estimate ( yes only an estimate) is that man releases 3% of the total annual CO2 flux each year. The rest comes from nature. First point, 97% vs 3%, how easily it is for that 3% to be lost in the 97%. Secondly what we are being led to believe is that 3% has a greater influence on the Earths temperature and by another leap of faith on climate than the other 97%. All I can say is that must be a very magical 3%. Second point is the CO2 being released back into the Carbon Cycle is not new it is just being put back where it used to be. One thing ignored by the Green Blob is that atmospheric CO2 levels were only as low as today (410ppm is LOW) at one previous time during the whole of Geological History (The Ordovician), indeed the average level of CO2 in the atmosphere over Geological Time is 2500ppm which coincidently is around what it was when the angiosperms evolved (plants we eat). Everything we need to know is provided for us by physics with geological history as a sound method of verification of the physics. Interesting do you not think that both of those sciences are ignored except for pointless cherry picking to cause shock and awe among the ignorant masses by aliasing the data. I could go on….

  12. Tim C permalink
    November 7, 2020 11:22 pm

    The great con of “renewable energy” is that it will provide cheap energy. In reality cheap energy is the last thing on earth that the greenies want at that will only fuel more consumption. No surprise the renewable peddlers hate seeing their con job exposed

  13. John Cullen permalink
    November 8, 2020 11:30 am

    Hello HotScot,

    My politics dictionary [Ref. 2] describes right(-wing) as “The opposite of left” but does grant that “… the label right-wing has many connotations which vary over time … In advanced liberal democracies, perhaps more than anything else the right has been defined in opposition to socialism … As a result, the ideologies of right-wing political parties have included elements of conservatism, … libertarianism … and for extreme-right parties racism and fascism.”

    Ref. 1 describes fascism as, “authoritarian and anti-communist” to which “no opposition, political or religious is allowed.” So I agree that the regime of Mussolini was authoritarian and therefore, as you say, resembled so many nasty regimes around the world. However, what is the evidence for your claim that, “the ultimate objective is always the same left wing ideology of total control of a community”? Specifically, what is uniquely left-wing about such controlling tendencies?

    1. Chris Cook, “A Dictionary of Historical Terms”, 3rd ed., Macmillan Press, 1998.
    2. I. McLean & A. McMillan, “Concise Dictionary of Politics”, 3rd edition, 2009.


Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: