Changing climate policy

The world’s governments, large environmental quangos and companies have been locked in talks to save the planet.

Let us make a couple of assumptions that will be unpopular on this site. Let us assume the world is warming. Let us assume that the main driver of this warming is the production of extra carbon dioxide from man made sources. I know that many of you are not persuaded the world is simply warming in a predictable way. Many of you think sunspots and other solar activity, volcanoes, natural carbon dioxide, water vapour and patterns of cloud cover will all have effects on the long run climate. Global warming theorists assure us they have taken this all into account and that these other factors are unimportant compared to man made carbon dioxide.

If we accept the conventional wisdom we can see why there is currently a row between the rich and poor nations, and an argument over whether to spend money on prevention or on adaptation. The poor countries say to the rich, you have created much of the carbon dioxide which causes the problem, so you should pay us to adapt to the results. The rich say it is now the poorer countries which are adding most to the world output of carbon dioxide, so they have to take expensive action to limit their contribution to the problem. The result will be an agreement which entails the rich paying more to help the poor, and results in more emphasis on adaptation. There is much haggling over surprisingly small possible changes in temperature, arguing over 0.5% of a degree, as if the experts can be that accurate.

One of the strange features of the debate is the absence of much talk about population growth. If you believe the world cannot take much more carbon dioxide, surely you want to limit the numbers of people joining the world population. The best strategy for a single country like the UK to cut its carbon dioxide output would be to limit immigration much more successfully, as this would reduce the need for carbon intensive new investments in additional capacity of all kinds to cater for the extra people. China, the world’s most populous country, has had a policy of limiting population growth for many years. It is now changing this as it can have difficult consequences for mothers and babies. The best policy to limit population growth is a policy which promotes higher incomes for all. Family size usually falls through voluntary action as income rises.

The problems with conventional policy responses based on trying to prevent more carbon dioxide include their adverse impact on income levels and therefore on population numbers. The danger of anti global warming policies in a single country like the UK is they may through dear energy simply send our energy intensive businesses to another country, so we lose the jobs but the carbon dioxide is still created elsewhere to meet out demands. Some responses to this problem as defined by the governments will make it worse, not better.


  1. Gary
    December 12, 2015

    I don’t believe a word of the climate change zealots, until they explain their stated objectives :

    1. create a carbon trading derivatives market, to give the financiers another income (presumably to augment their bombed out financial derivatives markets)

    2. to create an effective additional tax(since everyone everyone creates co2, on every living person in the world)

    3. to use carbon restriction as a de-industrialisation policy. (see Agenda 21 created at the Rio Climate Change conference in 1992)

  2. Lifelogic
    December 12, 2015

    The World temperature is remarkedly stable, half a degree variation in 100 years is nothing significant. There is no real evidence at all for a catastrophic run away firery hell. But wind and PV save little or no CO2 anyway. They just exports jobs and the CO2 production. Also all the evidence is a little warmer is a good thing net on balance with better crop yield resulting.

    Biofuel production pushes up food prices actual causes people to starve like most of the greencrap lunacy it is misguided and positively immoral.

    As you say the best way to limit the population is to make the poor richer. The way to do this is more trade, clean water, basic medical care, nutrition, inoculations – Gates foundation types of things that we know work and quickly. Using CO2 as if it were some world thermostat is just scientific lunacy. Their are countless other factors at play. Many we cannot predict or control anyway.

  3. Mike Stallard
    December 12, 2015

    “The poor countries say to the rich, you have created much of the carbon dioxide which causes the problem, so you should pay us to adapt to the results.”

    But why are the poor countries poor?
    Colonialism? Well, Singapore was much poorer than Kenya at independence. Korea was a war zone when Rhodesia/Zimbabwe became independent. The Maldives have a superb tourist industry. Ceylon/Sri Lanka was one of the richest parts of the British Empire with all that tea.
    Methinks President Mugabe is somewhat mistaken when he castigates us.

  4. Edward.
    December 12, 2015

    The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change………..

    But what’s it got to do with us and preaching to those who are already doomed.

    “Climate change”, ah yes they used to name it “man made warming” but the natural world had other ideas.
    Thus, seeing as the climate changes, its fluctuations as capricious as only natural variability can be and notwithstanding all apocalyptic prognostications at that. Mankind, despite $£€ billions wasted on ‘research’ was unable to see, prove, associate the noise of man made influence to ‘warming’ through his emissions of a harmless gas [CO₂] produced through quite useful industrial processes – alack!
    But “we needed change” as the hackneyed aphorism goes and man made warming shape shifted into the chimera know known as the known unknown of “Climate Change”, alarmingly. All too and very suitably, the perfect political vehicle for an endless amorphous nebulousness. The “climate change” chimera then was translated into means and as ever involved, more pain and less cake/more cake……. tomorrow but as always: think of the children.

    Being browbeaten by the likes of the Zimbabwean president whose tenuous grip on life and sanity is ever slackening, a man who almost single handed has pushed his own nation once one of the richest and most stable economies in Africa into a financial dustbin and with mass starvation, was a thing to behold but that’s the UN all over.
    And when is, a developed nation, ie the likes of Indonesia, China, Brazil and India, not a developed nation ie the likes of Indonesia, China, Brazil and India?
    Who knows, maybe Geologically speaking an island arc volcanic atoll, Kiribati could well be sinking and the sea levels have remained stable for the past 50 years, maybe the islands are run by a bunch of hypocrites who couldn’t run a bath let alone an island nation – who can tell – certainly they won’t and neither can the UN.

    What’s it all got to do with us anyway, already we are well down the road to de-industrialization and all thanks to Mr. Miliband’s perfidy [the climate change act 2008] and then, our most recent Chancellor Mr. Osborne’s carbon floor tax, and the shutting down of any remnants of reliable electrical generating plant [coal] the renewables boondoggle industry and using STOR [ranks of diesel – yes DIESEL generators as some form of backup], talk about…………. talking to the converted!

    A grand UN climate change agreement – insofar as Britain is fussed, what could possible affect could it wreak, that, heretofore hasn’t already been fashioned?

  5. Richard1
    December 12, 2015

    The most sensible position on this seems to be that articulated by The science writer Matt Ridley: no doubt it is true CO2 is a greenhouse gas which causes warming, and some of the warming we saw in the 2nd 1/2 of the C20th was due to CO2. But the rate of warming we have seen, whether from the beginning of the scare in c 1990 or whether through the whole post-WW2 industrialisation, is c. 1/2 to 1/3 of that predicted by the models, upon the output of which all global warming policies are based. Nor have we seen the increase in extreme weather events which was forecast. Then we also see phenomena which are the precise opposite of the predictions of the models – such as an increase in Antarctic ice volume, and a greening of the biosphere.

    This being the case it seems we have decades longer to come up with a carbon-free source of energy, so policies which prevent development and prosperity make no sense. Technological and commercial innovation is the only possible solution. Taxes, regulations and subsidies will fail and cause unnecessary economic hardship.

  6. Lifelogic
    December 12, 2015

    Nearly all the government responses have made things far worse but then that is usually what governments do. Expensive energy mean thousand die due to burning dung and other fuels, lacking light, and power tools to work efficiently. Thousand die due to biofuels pushing up food costs. The real catastrophe is driven by the green loons’ unscientific and totally immoral lunacies. The road to hell is paved with fake green fools and their totally misguided good intents.

  7. Richard1
    December 12, 2015

    Just listened to a pathetic interview on Radio 4 by James Naughtie with alarmist Ed Davey and Sir Brian Hoskyns. All agreed climate change is heading for catastrophe and Naughtie posed no testing questions on behalf of those who might be slightly sceptical. Hoskyns was not asked why we haven’t seen the warming predicted by the models, Davey was not asked how it is after $bns of subsidy, renewables still account for < 1% of global energy. Hoskyns was able to sight 'floods' as evidence for global warming – no questions from Naughtie as to why we haven't seen an increase in extreme weather on a global basis. I would suggest to the BBC that, even if they want to be cheerleaders for global warming alarmism and the regime of taxes, regulations and subsidies which alarmists like, they would do better in convincing the public if they actually facilitate debate and put real questions to people such as Messrs Hoskyns and Davey (who incidentally also got in an unchallenged attack on the govt).

    1. hefner
      December 12, 2015

      Work Energy Resources, 2013 Survey, a big report 468 pages, available on the World Energy Council website:
      Part of renewables in total primary energy supply (TPES) in 2013:
      OECD: 3.6 %
      non-OECD: 1.0 %
      so averaged on total world: 2.2%, of which EU has 6.9% of its TPES from renewables.

      What is your reference for renewables < 1% ?

      1. Richard1
        December 13, 2015

        IEA. Probably should have said wind + solar < 1%.

    2. hefner
      December 12, 2015

      As for subsidies, in OECD countries in 2011, they were $90 bn for fossil fuel industries and $88 bn for renewables (Wikipedia: Energy Subsidies).

      1. Richard1
        December 13, 2015

        A bad subsidy (for fossil fuels) doesn’t justify another bad subsidy (for renewables). Besides most estimates of fossil fuel subsidies include the absence of taxes, based on spurious estimates of the damage they cause. Not taxing something isn’t a subsidy.

    3. Lifelogic
      December 13, 2015

      The BBC is a complete joke on climate change (and indeed most other issues). They have an absurd alarmist agenda, it is proven science and and one who say anything else is a denier, and reporters who do not even know what “positive feedback” is, other – than in the that was a jolly good report Peter sense.

    4. stred
      December 14, 2015

      R4 could have asked Ed Davey why he said ‘shit’ when Prof MacKay explained how much CO2 would be saved by Drax, having been implemented by Ed. Also,why he decided to stop the Eggborough conversion and why they are going ahead to convert Lynemouth to burn American trees- paid for by the Green Bank, or taxpayers.But then Naughtie is really more of a books person and would not have picked up anything too technical.

  8. Mark B
    December 12, 2015

    Good morning

    The result will be an agreement which entails the rich paying more to help the poor, and results in more emphasis on adaptation.

    “From each according to their abilities, to those according to their needs.”

    This is Socialism writ large and the plan of, Maurice Strong (architect of this climate scam) all along. To move the wealth of the rich too the poorest parts of the world. But they needed an excuse and so was born the fake religion of climate change.

    The money will never be used for anything other than to feather the beds of corrupt officials and politicians. Wherever money goes, the dregs / hyenas of humanity are never far behind.

  9. Anonymous
    December 12, 2015

    I agree with everything said in this posting.

    I would add that the celebrities and rich politicians who demand cut-backs must endure them to a degree that is truly sacrificial to themselves too. As with celebrities demanding that we take in refugees, it should not just be the little people who pay all of the time. In fact those who are most vocal about these things should pay the largest share of it.

    The impact of these policies on ordinary families, living in a modest homes, is far more punishing than anything the left wing elite might endure.

    If Ms Thompson wants green policies then she must reduce her footprint to one modest home, one modest car, limited travel and a reduction in her rather pointless but carbon excessive industry.

    1. yosarion
      December 12, 2015

      Totally agree, lets see Prince Charles walk from John o Groats to Lands End Ghandi stile in a bed sheet and flip flops and not use any kind of motorised transport and stay in twenty quid a night B N Bs for two years and I might start listening to over privileged gobbledygook.

      1. Anonymous
        December 12, 2015

        Any celebrity who demands carbon cutting and who lives a rich lifestyle needs to be ridiculed until they change.

        1. Lifelogic
          December 13, 2015

          Indeed do as I say not as I do is the agenda. £1M+ personal annual travel bill does not sound like someone committed to saving CO2.

          1. stred
            December 14, 2015

            Charles looked like he had found his true vocation in Paris, especially when kissing Mme Royale, one of Pres Hollande’s exes. Edward VIII liked Paris and politics too. Perhaps Charles the Green should stay there. His sister and sons would know how to avoid getting involved in politics.

  10. Ian wragg
    December 12, 2015

    Agenda 21. John I’m surprised you never mention this. The UN ‘s means of creating world government and de industrialising the first world for the benefit of the developing world.
    This is the driver of your parties stupid aid policy. Cutting back on all and sundry at home whilst delivering taxpayer largesse to the rest of the world.
    France is slowly awakening to the con and so is Germany with AfD.
    I see we may be contributing to the new border force
    Another beneficial crisis for Brussels to grab more power.
    When will it all stop.

    1. Dame Rita Webb
      December 12, 2015

      This time last week the part of the village closest to the river, where I live, flooded. By mid week it looked like the set for a sci-fi horror film. Piles of furniture left in the street, the odd wrecked car and soldiers painting a red “X” on condemned houses. The residents down there had to put up with sub standard flood defences (half the height of the high watermark from the last time the place flooded). Meanwhile Dave thinks their tax money is better spent providing PE lessons in Turkey and funding an Ethiopian girl band.

      The local radio outlet of the state broadcaster is not of much help either. Last night it said the next band of rain would avoid the area. As I type its raining heavier than last Saturday, though there are no 60 mph winds.

    2. Denis Cooper
      December 12, 2015


      “Commission increases Turkey fund contribution to €1bn”

      Initially it was going to be €500 million, then €700 million, now €1000 million of which about €100 million or £70 million will be UK taxpayers’ money, and this is despite the fact that we have an opt-out not just from the EU’s immigration and asylum policy but also from any financial consequences thereof.

      1. Chris
        December 12, 2015

        Denis, I replied to you on this in an earlier article but my comment was posted very late in the day so you maybe didn’t see it. Basically it quoted an article, which quoted Cameron, saying our contribution would be £175 million. Just like that, no qualms, no consulting Parliament. The EU is simply a bottomless pit which can demand money relentlessly and ever growing sums., it seems.

        1. Denis Cooper
          December 13, 2015

          Yes, I did see it and commented further, thanks.

    3. Cliff. Wokingham.
      December 12, 2015

      Indeed, Man Made Climate Change is NOT the real danger…..It is Man Made Global Socialism.

    4. turbo terrier
      December 12, 2015

      Ian Wragg

      Agenda 21. It is like a slow growing tumour gradually taking over logical thinking by vast numbers of politicians at every level.

      Sadly for the UK we have our host and his 100 band of like minded brothers on the battlements whilst the rest of Westminster slowly succumb to the disease.

      1. turbo terrier
        December 12, 2015

        Where and who is going to be paying the £100 billion to under developed countries? I dread to think what the UK share will be.

        Will they never learn?

        Address the problem don’t deal in solutions

  11. Ex-expat Colin
    December 12, 2015

    “much talk about population growth”. That won’t be considered as a driver because its not on the quick money agenda. It takes combined brainpower and compliance.

    I think China has a problem with unsupported elderly due to past restrictions on family size. That unforeseen thing again!

    Adaptation and technical work on Nuclear with rapid deployment. Return windmills to the scrap yard and get rid of those who championed the thing.

    Solar is about the only thing that came out of this of some worth….not for the grid though!

    You simply cannot believe that so many fools are gathered in one place at the one time.

    1. Denis Cooper
      December 12, 2015

      I doubt that it was unforeseen by Chinese demographers who will probably be just as good at their job as those in the west. That is, if they didn’t get purged during the Cultural Revolution and they have been allowed to work free from pressure to come up with whatever answers the government may want.

      Which is no longer a problem confined to overtly totalitarian regimes but has insidiously spread into the so-called democracies, which incessantly talk about freedom while any academic who steps out of line is likely to be pilloried in the “social media” and then sacked.

      But just as previously the Chinese approach to cutting their birth rate was brutal I suspect their approach to dealing with the new problem of an ageing population will also be hard-headed, if not quite so brutal.

      I very much doubt that they will decide to embark on the idiotic never-ending demographic Ponzi scheme which is now favoured by our own government, constantly importing huge numbers of foreign “young workers” who somehow forget to bring their own supply of the elixir of youth, or even their own bit of additional land with a house ready built upon it, and who never go home .

  12. agricola
    December 12, 2015

    Climate change is a characteristic of the World we live in. Check out the drawings of mountains with glaciers since the days when Edward Whymper was climbing the Matterhorn and compare them with todays glacier positions.

    That many politicians and some scientists believe they can change this by the simplistic reduction of carbon dioxide levels is naïve in the extreme. Plants live on CO2 so why not plant more plants. Global Warming is the new religion so you ignorant people had better believe it or else. Sound bite Cameron is already distorting our economy adversely through his desire to adhere to it’s tenets.

    As you imply, reducing our population to a manageable 45 million would be a very sensible step. Spending money on defences would be a more practical step. Pursuing Fusion Energy would be desirable. However do not hold you breath. We are governed by economic illiterates who cannot even make a decision as to where to expand our airport capacity against a proven need, unlike the nonsense of HS2 where they hope to cut ribbons and look good on TV.

  13. Lifelogic
    December 12, 2015

    Is it really the case that there is a move to make small businesses do tax returns quarterly. When with all the absurd demands of government put on them will they find time to actually run their businesses? Good to see the rip off charges many utility companies charge for new and moving meters highlighted in the Times. Nice to have a virtual monopoly!

    1. MikeP
      December 12, 2015

      And not only the time to do quarterly returns but the expense too, quadrupling small business spend on accountants to help them navigate our overly complex tax laws.

      1. getahead
        December 12, 2015

        If HMRC cannot cope with annual returns, how do they expect to manage on a quarterly basis?

        1. stred
          December 14, 2015

          And this morning, we all will have to make tax returns throughout the year, on the computer, with fewer and more distant tax offices. The website will answer all the questions if we can’t speak to anyone, While the (B)OOBR boss says they think 90% of councils will take up the offer to raise business taxes.

  14. fedupsoutherner
    December 12, 2015

    The USA reduced its carbon footprint accidentally by using fracked gas. We need to frack for our own gas and use clean, safe nuclear. If we had not adopted the renewables approach (which only provides intermittent energy) we would not now find ourselves having to subsidise all energy forms. Our whole energy policy is a farce. Get back to basics. As for the population, John you say,

    The best policy to limit population growth is a policy which promotes higher incomes for all. Family size usually falls through voluntary action as income rises.

    This might be the case in countries where they rely on large families to make ends meet but in the UK where benefits are given out like confetti and large families are rewarded regardless of whether the parents can afford more children I don’t think this will work. We all know that some people have more children because more children equals more money. I overhead a young person in the post office the other day demanding his ‘pay’. The woman behind the desk actually told him that pay had to be earned, what he was getting was benefits.

    As you rightly say John, goods still have to be manufactured and countries like India, China etc will not hold back but will be grateful for all the jobs we export to them. The climate is changing anyway, it always does, but how the hell these ‘experts’ think they can control it is beyond me. They told us the south of England would be arid and that places like Spain would be deserts by now but what do we see ? – The opposite. Until they know what is happening we would be better to guard against the effects of the climate by building better flood defences so that the unfortunate people of Cumbria don’t have to experience what they have done over the last few days. Let’s get real!!

    1. stred
      December 13, 2015

      Obama didn’t mention fracking in his speech in Paris. He said it was done by solar and wind. Not technically lying I suppose, just being economical with the actualite.

  15. fedupsoutherner
    December 12, 2015

    On the subject of intermittent energy. Yesterday afternoon was wild and windy and the wind turbines were turning robustly. In the evening it dropped dramatically and I am sure the output of energy also dropped. This is no way to run an efficient energy system for a modern country. There are many ways to reduce our carbon footprint without resorting to draconian ways. Just listening to the debacle regarding the Forth Road Bridge in Scotland. Surely an example of how we should spend to ensure we can continue with our lives. They are talking about loss of business and this will happen if we don’t keep our energy costs down too.

  16. fedupsoutherner
    December 12, 2015

    Now talking about public transport and in particular trains. They have said that there was not enough capacity and that the trains were so crowded people actually became ill. What is going to happen when we all have to get our diesel cars off the road? Will there be enough electricity to charge all electric vehicles? I have seen an article where they show the grid could not take the demand and would cost billions to put right. What a complete fiasco. This is the right way to make the poor even poorer so poverty will never be put right. All countries must take appropriate action to deal with nature and all it throws at us and not charge us a fortune to live and try and deal with the problems on our own.

    1. fedupsoutherner
      December 12, 2015

      To make myself clear, I am talking about the trains in Scotland and the debacle with the Forth Road Bridge. Can you imagine the carnage when they manage to barr most cars from the roads and we all have to manage with public transport?

      1. getahead
        December 12, 2015

        Have you seen the pictures of trains in India with passengers hanging out of the windows and riding on the roof?

  17. Antisthenes
    December 12, 2015

    The only settled science is that we are polluting and changing our environment and certainly the larger the population the more we pollute and change it. The effects of CO2 are far from clear and making that the major effort in cleaning up our environment is leading us to take actions and spend our wealth in the least efficient and productive ways. Of course the reduction of CO2 has it’s merits as the the processes that produce CO2 also produce many of the pollutants that we are pumping into our atmosphere. It is by no means the only way we are effecting our environment harmfully.

    Our planet is already dealing with the extra CO2 some of which is proving beneficial by increasing plant and crop growth. Cutting down the production of CO2 is a good idea but there is not the haste to do so that climate alarmists would have us believe. Instead climate change scientist should refocus along with political leaders on coming up with ways to decrease the damage we are doing by the production of the real causes. Pollution and our misuse of our habitats.

  18. oldtimer
    December 12, 2015

    It is a big ask, but let us suspend our critical faculties as you suggest on the “Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming” hypothesis which metamorphosed first into the “global warming” and later into the “climate change” hypotheses and the propaganda campaigns which promote the idea that mankind is responsible and therefore mankind can control the outcome.

    Population growth is the big driver of energy and resource consumption. But, as Hans Rosling has brilliantly shown, higher incomes and standards of living result in smaller families. He even broadcast an hour long documentary about it on the BBC back in 2013, available here:

    He has also demonstrated the rapid growth in wealth in the countries of the world on his gapminder website. Much of this depends on the availability of electrical power because it raises productivity and with it living standards. A working electricity grid is fundamental to the way we live and work – of which we will all become painfully aware if, or when?, there is a grid failure this winter.

    The idea of prevention will not work because man does not and cannot control the fundamental forces of nature. Mankind can, has and does influence nature at the margins where it lives and has its being but fundamentally mankind has always had to adapt to do so. Adaptation, not control, is the way forward. Obsession with CO2 is a blind alley. The idea and the belief that mankind can control global temperature by controlling man made CO2 emissions is extraordinarily arrogant.

    1. Lifelogic
      December 13, 2015

      Indeed – The idea and the belief that mankind can control global temperature by controlling man made CO2 emissions is extraordinarily arrogant.

      It is also patently daft CO2 is one but of countless influences on a hugely complex chaotic system. Many are not even knowable such as the solar outputs. volcanic activity, plant genetic responses to higher CO2 concentrations and endless other things. It is group state think madness to justify yet more tax and world government socialism.

    2. Denis Cooper
      December 13, 2015

      Higher standards of living may result in smaller families, but much more powerfully smaller families result in higher standards of living. South Korea is an example of a country where the government deliberately set out to persuade people to have fewer children and through vigorous campaigns were successful in doing that, without the need for compulsion as in China, with the result that the South Koreans became more prosperous, and that in turn tended to feed back into smaller families. I will not cite any specific contrary example of a country where people have been urged to have large numbers of children and consequently they have remained poor or got even poorer, but there are many which can be found by simply by comparing a list of the poorest countries with a list of the countries with the highest birth rates or population growth rates.

  19. Iain Moore
    December 12, 2015

    Agree with much of what you say, the global warming agenda is highly selective in what it concerns itself with. It is mostly a tool with which to beat up on the West, where our politicians, rather than defend our interests, lap up the criticism of us being the dirty polluter, no doubt feeding their self flagellation, but don’t point out to ‘developing’ countries that we don’t see them denying themselves of the products and technology that all this Westerns pollution created, for they wouldn’t have their mobile phones or cars if we hadn’t gone through the industrial revolution, but neither do they challenge the rank hypocrisy of places like the Maldives, who stage Government meetings underwater claiming their islands will all be underwater because of global warming, but at the same time build five new international airports, giving them more airports per capita than anywhere in the world in order to support an economy based on the highly polluting international travel, nor do they point out that may be these countries problems might have more to do with the 400% increase in population they have seen , or that they are stripping their forests, or dynamiting their coral reefs leaving them exposed to the ocean waves, than any marginal effect of the increase in temperatures.

    You wish, for once, our political class would grow some, and defend our interests, which is probably why Trump and Farrage are popular, for they align themselves with the people and country , rather than being distant post nations politicians. I dread finding out later today how much this agreement in Paris is going to cost us, how much it is going to impoverish our country, and how many people it will throw out of work.

  20. stred
    December 12, 2015

    Personally, I think we have to be very careful about making big environmental changes, such as CO2 increase and there is little doubt that the present level is caused by burning fossil fuels. Of course,in absolute terms, the amount is very small and dwarfed by some natural emissions. There is now a debate, censored by the MSM and governments, about whether the increase actually makes much difference, as by far the largest amount of energy at the wavelength picked up by CO2 is already absorbed at much lower levels. The physics has been known since the early days when the warming effects were being worked out in previous centuries. The scientists then decided that the effect had to act in a different way and only since the stalling of the temperature rise has it been questioned again.

    There is an article by the American Physics Institute available from another argumentative warmist Jerry on the ‘Steven Goddard- who am I’ website, along with a lot of graphs and good knockabout stuff. It was interesting to read the official version and see that they claim that CO2 roughly followed warming in the past, as found in Greenland ice cores. The period in the graphs I have seen is about 800 years- very rough. There is also avideo by an American scientist explaining the wavelength absorbtion. I hope anyone interested will find time to watch.

    The strangest aspect is the new claims about sea level rise, which has been repeated by the BBC and Ch4 with picture of Bangladesh about to go under. The hasn’t been any more than usual, according to tidal markers. The new estimates come from recent satellite observations, and the graphs showing a sudden rise are shown on websites. How can satellite measure a constantly level and average them out over the world, one might ask, and why are tidal levels now thought less reliable and ignored? Yet all the claims about sudden rises of 1.5m are based on the new satellite data.

    Then there are the graphs showing air temperature rise, of the type that Piers Corbyn was allowed to briefly wave on the BBC recently. These show that, apparently, the leading lights have been so keen to discredit the pause in temperature rise that they have altered the older readings, in order to steepen the gradient and trend. Either this is true or not. The only comments in favour seem to contain personal attacks on the ‘deniers’ or lukewarmists.

    The other change of tack by the warmists is to claim that the heat has gone into the sea. We are told that temperatures have risen. The oceans exchange heat at different depths very slowly and a vast amount of heat is contained. Yet some graphs show data taken from cores of the ocean bed, to estimate temperatures over centuries. Other measurements come from the surface, taken by buoys and even satellite. How on Earth do they compare like with like in water that is constantly being mixed and subject to local conditions?

    I now am convinced that the Green industry depends on a lot of manipulation and ignorant journalists and politicians.Their solutions such as burning biomass and windfarms at sea do not even reduce CO2 when a proper audit is done. When I see Ed Milliband trotting the stuff out and telling us how important his greencrap is, it makes me despair that such dunces can ever get into government.

    1. stred
      December 12, 2015

      Oh dear, I read this twice. para 1- constantly changing- + usual typos.

    2. rick hamilton
      December 13, 2015

      There isn’t a single member of the Cabinet who has a science, technology or engineering degree, unless you count geography or economics. Of course they are easily hoodwinked by vested interests waving graphs and charts, because they haven’t had the training to be able to ask the right questions.

      Why would anybody in their right mind put a PPE graduate in charge of Energy (Miliband) or a History graduate (Rudd). And why would anybody think a group of politicians of any sort could change the climate at will and within an accuracy of 0.5 degrees ?

    3. oldtimer
      December 13, 2015

      If you have the time you might enjoy exploring this post of the CET, (Central English Temperature) which finds little difference between today and the 1660s. Link:

      The author has done extensive analysis of all of the temperature records available, by country, in the past. He pointed out the significant discontinuities that exist in the official records as temperature stations are added or deleted. In particular he pointed out the huge change that occurred in 1990 when the number of surface stations included in the record dropped from c 6200 to c 1200, of which only 200 were common to the pre 1990 and post 1990 periods. No one has identified the effect of this significant change. His methods, source data and results are all on his web site.

      Professor Jones of the University of East Anglia used about 4200 of these stations in his pre 1990 data. When challenged to produce a parallel run to validate and measure the validity of the new series he said he was unable to do so because he had lost, or no longer kept the records! This can be found by reading the Muir Russell enquiry evidence in the Climategate investigation.

      1. stred
        December 14, 2015

        Old T. Thanks for this. I could not find the reason why they omitted the medieval warm period and little ice age, or have recently altered temperatures to make warming come back. The central england temperature records (CET) and historical writings were thought less reliable than things like tree ring measurement around the world. It appears that England would have had different temperature fluctuations than the rest of the world for 400 years. And the recent ones were revised down because of the effect of built up areas. I wonder whether the present temperatures are being revised down, as population goes up, building takes more land and tree felling increases .

        I am now even more doubtful, but my bird thinks I am starting to go a bit senile and have fringe autism, while refusing to read the articles!

  21. alan jutson
    December 12, 2015

    Pleased you mention population growth in your blog today John, as all of the so called major brains involved so far, seem to have forgotten about this rather basic variable in their calculations.

    Just as the increasing population uses and needs more food production, so it also uses more energy, more people also need more goods and services so business grows as will industrial pollution/gases

    Perhaps we should be encouraging people to breed rather less by reducing/stopping State funding/benefit payments of more than one child per person.

    Does our carbon limit as a Country increase with immigration.

    Do those Countries with a reducing population (like Germany) have their carbon limits automatically reduced.

    Perhaps if we bombed other Countries rather less, we would not have as much pollution in the World either.

    Far too many variables involved for politicians to make any sort of sensible decision, especially when they have the power to Tax anything, for any reason, for greater income to spend on vanity projects.
    Its almost as if it will soon be a policy of, you can pollute if you can afford it !

    1. Denis Cooper
      December 13, 2015

      “Perhaps we should be encouraging people to breed rather less by reducing/stopping State funding/benefit payments of more than one child per person.”

      But on the whole it isn’t the people in this country who need to be encouraged to breed less; in fact in the absence of mass immigration over the past two decades and more we would probably now have a slowly declining population.

      By the late 1980’s births in this country were declining to the point where they barely exceeded deaths, and showed no sign of bouncing back up; subtract all the immigrants since then, and also of course subtract all their children born here who are not themselves immigrants but were born here rather than elsewhere because of the immigration of either or both parents, and the population would be hardly increasing or more likely would be gradually decreasing.

  22. bigneil
    December 12, 2015

    If you look at a map of the world, what %age of the total land mass of the planet is our little island? What %age of the pollution of the world are we causing? Our ( for now) country’s pollution output WILL go up because, as you say John – more and more people arrive ( for their on-the-taxpayer free lives ) – they need electricity, water, housing etc – and they will cause more waste and sewage. All these extra people will cause more pollution.

    1. behindthefrogs
      December 12, 2015

      Our country may only occupy a small area of the worlds land mass and contain a small proportion of the worlds population but this must never be a reason for us failing to make a contribution to CO2 reduction that is proportional to our wealth. We are far too keen to find reasons why it is not our problem.

      1. ian wraggf
        December 12, 2015

        So we shut down all our coal fired power stations, treble the price of power and watch people freeze to death because they can’t pay their bill.
        Why aren’t the rest of the world following suit.
        btw the government has just announced the subsidy of hundreds of diesel generators and open cycle gas turbines to provide back up to wind and Pv.
        These constitute the dirtiest method ever to produce power but hey ho we’re saving the planet.
        What sanctimonious twaddle.

  23. Graham Wood
    December 12, 2015

    “One of the strange features of the debate ” Indeed, but the whole debate is more than strange. It is surreal, bizarre and equally important unnecessary. I am one of the “deniers” – i.e. who argue that man-made climate change does not exist, and that there is no real scientific evidence to suggest that.
    Of course some scientists are persuaded otherwise, but many are not.
    Even, even if the global temperature rose by a degree or two, and as many argue, thjis would be wholly beneficial anyway for all sorts of reasons – not least the increased production of most food products, and would prevent vast numbers of people in the northern hemispheres dying of cold and related medical conditions.
    Climate science is extremely complex, and no amount of pseudo scientific theory will alter that!

  24. A.Sedgwick
    December 12, 2015

    The BBC have non programmed Quentin Letts “What’s the point of the Met Office” – see his article in yesterday’s DM. I listened to the programme and found it very revealing albeit in a jokey way and can see the implications if someone did a “What’s the point of the BBC” with others e.g. House of Lords, Bank of England, IMF, EU. The list could be quite long. On the same theme I cannot see the point of the BBC 24 hours news channel, a particularly banal piece yesterday around 1330 and probably on the hour through the day. They had a reporter in a Pacific Island country, unknown to me, talking about rising sea levels to the locals – evidence, facts there were none, just waffle. It may have been awful reporting and the islands may be at risk but the suspicion had to be it was all conjecture and scaremongering.

    1. MikeP
      December 12, 2015

      …. not to mention a nice little earner for a reporting crew to visit said Pacific island.

    2. forthurst
      December 12, 2015

      “They had a reporter in a Pacific Island country, unknown to me, talking about rising sea levels to the locals – evidence, facts there were none, just waffle.”

      As we know, the reason that AGW has failed of recent years to achieve the expected results predicted by scientific climate change theory is that the excess heat, undoubtedly produced by increasing CO2 (are the models wrong? Of course not!) has sneakily hid in the ocean depths, still paying attention, is to visit a place far away of which we know little to establish that, yes indeed, they’re now practically submerged under the expanding mass of water (obviously after a bit of reheasal and the exchange of a couple of conche shells). Pity the propaganda ploy with drowning polar bears has failed; still (foreigners with a threat of flooding ed) is nearly as good.

      1. forthurst
        December 12, 2015

        Oh dear; a few words went awol during an editing op.

  25. Bert Young
    December 12, 2015

    Can’t see the point in the attempts we make to limit the population in this country when we have uncontrolled immigration . The numbers keep on coming and our infrastructure resources are stretched to the limit ; negotiations with the EU are a complete waste of time and money . Every day I have to wait an extraordinary amount of time attempting to exit my village , turn right and get on to the main road ; the traffic volume now is horrendous ( bus services are limited and are subjected to further cuts ).

    We are a Christian country with our 0wn (mostly!) laws . Let us keep it this way ; those who disagree and set up their own religious courts should be sent packing . We must not allow this subversive influence to spread any further .

    1. getahead
      December 12, 2015

      Far too sensible Bert.

    December 12, 2015

    Not seen a detailed theoretical model of annual change in climate if the most draconian curtailments were immediately made to all the man-made activities which are said to negatively impact on climate and the well-being of the human race.

    Thus far, the consequences of industrial activity have increased the world population in even very poor countries, increasing personal wealth, food consumption, food production, home heating systems, care for the old and young, greater survival rates for babies, greater technological invention and innovation, huge increase in longevity.

    The smog across Beijing is on a par with Clear Soup compared with the Pea-Souper which descended on London in 1952 killing 12,000 in four days or what were the regular daily smogs across cities such as Sheffield.

    In many ways the Green Climate Change ideologists have already been bowled out. However, they seem sustained by their own momentum and extra CO2 which as we all know leads to increased plant growth. Obviously cabbages and organic humbugs do particularly well.

    The downside of the wonderful change in the climate of Man’s life-progression on the entire planet due to his splendid industrialisation is a terrible and earsplitting whining and uncomfortable whingeing from the as always incoherent Lefties.

  27. Margaret
    December 12, 2015

    The other feasible theory is the land mass problem which of course is directly related to population growth spreading cities and the increasing ground temperature. It would seem obvious to gardeners that plants are likely to survive hard winters when placed next to the house, as the ground and surrounding air temperature is higher than say 10 metres away (providing there are no other buildings). If this is applied on a greater scale, the overall global warmth will increase due to population growth requiring civilised spaces.

    I believe the greenhouse effect is also contributing and surely there is no one factor which will lead us to glacial and polar melt down on the way to all needing to morph into fishes and from thereon, whilst the next ice age, due to dilution of the salinity ensues, organisms which can survive extremely low temperatures , will start the cycle of mammals again.
    The planet does not need to be saved . It is mankind who needs to be saved.

  28. Atlas
    December 12, 2015


    I think the science is seriously flawed. However in the spirit of your posting I also see what is going on in Paris as an absolute bonanza for a whole host of countries coming along to extract money from our pockets. For them Christmas has come early. They certainly will not criticise the “science” that is their gateway to “stacks of cash for nothing”.

    I suspect that certain politicians wanting to have a legacy is assisting events in Paris.

  29. Ted Mombiot
    December 12, 2015

    I’m not sure why we are at the Paris conference.

    We lead the world by passing into law our Climate Change Act.
    If every other nation did the same we would not just stop the warming but create a planet where temperatures would fall.
    An 80% reduction in CO2 levels is our legally enshrined target.

    However Im not sure how we achieve this especially with a rapidly rising

    1. Richard1
      December 12, 2015

      On present technology this target can only be achieved by moving to 100% electric cars, 100% electric heating of homes – and the electricity powered by wind – and the shutting down of all heavy energy consumptive industry. Probably also means a drastic cut in aviation. Since this is never going to happen it would be better to adopt more realistic targets, make a big push for shale gas – which has 1\2 the CO2 emissions of coal – and encourage technological and commercial innovation to provide a long term solution. It’s not going to happen by passing laws, regulating and taxing.

      1. stred
        December 13, 2015

        The first part is actually the plan. No, really. Go away and think about it.

    2. Peter Davies
      December 12, 2015

      So you really think that this would cut warming?

      Did the Romans not grow grapes in Scotland and was north Africa not once temperate?

      Climate variation will happen no matter what we do. We need to focus on cleaning emissions and stopping habitat destruction but co2 itself is one of millions of gases which is plant food

      1. Ted Monbiot
        December 12, 2015

        I think you are right Peter.
        If you look at the amount of CO2 that is created by mankind it is under 5% of the total created on Earth.
        If you then look at the amount the UK produces this is less than 2% of the total created.
        So even if the UK reduced its output to zero, overall it will have very little effect on the toal amount of CO2 created by mankind.
        Assuming of course that CO2 has a direct affect on the climate.

  30. MikeP
    December 12, 2015

    Cards on the table time. While I can’t deny that we’re had some warmer weather of late, rather like we did in 1949 and 1976, I’m one of those that is rather more inclined to the natural cycles of the solar system and their effect on our climate than any belief that mankind has a snowballs’s chance in Hell of altering it, even given a plethora of actions coming out of the Paris talks. Nature will always win. The CC debate has always suffered in credibility by being driven by industrialised countries, having built their success on pollution, trying to pull up the drawbridge to require India and China to clean up their acts even though we’ve all exported our production to them. It smacks of politicians protecting their countries’ economic might not a genuine will to clean up the planet.

    I’d be more inclined to listen to the (largely Western Government-funded) climate scientists if they could for once answer a few simple questions:
    Q1 – could the increase in temperatures we see in Europe be anything to do with us cleaning up our skies and those in North America where the bulk or our weather comes from? Has this ever been modelled ?
    Q2 – we often hear about de-forestation (without any rigorous data to support it) but how come we don’t hear about increased plant and tree growth from the additional CO2 as nature continues to balance inputs and outputs? If my lawn and trees are anything to go by, Nature continues to do a great job in Wokingham !
    Q3 – what if the race for green energy is actually making things worse? Nature has balanced our ecosystem for millenia yet here we are trying to butt in with our stupid windfarms and the switch to diesel cars ?
    Q4 – how much Government funding around the world goes into checking that we aren’t exacerbating the problem ?
    Q5 – how come the Hadley Centre’s temperature anomalies have all miraculously jumped up by half a degree since I checked them? Changing the history looks suspicious given the models never seem to agree with the outturn each year

    America and many other Western countries (but particularly the US) have much higher CO2 emissions per capita than China and the rest of the developing world. Until they are prepared to take drastic action on their emissions the debate and Government actions have no credibility in my book.

  31. Denis Cooper
    December 12, 2015

    My view is simple: that at present there is still no climatological theory which is reliable enough to be the basis for major public policy decisions.

    Perhaps this will change in the future, but that is the present situation and it is foolish even to believe otherwise, let alone act on that misapprehension.

    December 12, 2015

    The Climate Change Conference in Paris has obviously discussed its plans with whatever Gods it worships or Mother Nature. Climate Change and all other natural phenomena actually do not work using mathematical formulae. They do not plan ahead. A reverse stimulus does not necessarily lead to opposite ongoing outcomes. The Earth,in our perspective infinitely complex and dynamic, has no respect for 2+2=4. . Though Man flatters himself with pin-pricked sized grey organic matter in his minuscule skull that mathematics is the be all and end all, it is mathematically probable that it is not.

    No-one has any idea of the consequences of being pro-active in reversing or stopping the “negatives” of industrialisation. Acid rain kills nasty mould growth on roses. Its absence encourages Mr and Mrs Man to invent new bio-chemicals with unknown long-term environmental consequences. And they drive using diesel to a superstore to buy it.

    Man’s observance of his carbon Footprint is a mental pseudo-intellectual throwback to his primeval primitiveness in tracking animals for food. Nature invented birds, centuries beyond his intelligence. Man is always in catch-up mode, like the Paris Conference, dopey.

  33. Tom William
    December 12, 2015

    The hubris of those who seriously believe in anthropogenic global warming (AGW), and that it can be stopped, based on computer programmes ( remember GIGO garbage In Garbage Out) never ceases to amaze me. The messianic attitudes of many “believers” in the UK can partially be explained by the official propaganda to which we have been submitted. For example:

    In September 2004 there was a Tyndall Research Institute paper entitled “The Social Simulation of the Public Perception of Weather Events and their Effect upon the Development of Belief in Anthropogenic Climate Change”.

    “Global warming (or climate change) is, without elaboration, a much debated and contested issue. Not only is it contested among scientists, but also among all those with vested interests.

    In this paper, we explore under what conditions belief in global warming or climate change, as identified and defined by experience, science and the media, can be maintained in the public’s perception.

    As the science itself is contested, needless to say, so are the potential policy changes. So how then do people make sense or construct a reality of something that they can never experience in its totality (climate) and a reality that has not yet manifest (i.e. climate change)?

    To endorse policy change people must ‘believe’ that global warming will become a reality some time in the future.

    Only the experience of positive temperature anomalies will be registered as indication of change if the issue is framed as global warming.

    Both positive and negative temperature anomalies will be registered in experience as indication of change if the issue is framed as climate change.

    We propose that in those countries where climate change has become the predominant popular term for the phenomenon, unseasonably cold temperatures, for example, are also interpreted to reflect climate change/global warming“.

    The Institute for Public Policy Research had this advice for public agencies interfacing with the public, (Warm Words, 2006) “Treating climate change as beyond argument…it is our recommendation that, at least for popular communications, interested agencies now need to treat the argument as having been won.

    This means simply behaving as if climate change exists and is real, and that individual actions are effective.

    The ‘facts’ need to be treated as being so taken-for-granted that they need not be spoken.

    The certainty of the Government’s new climate-change slogan – ‘Together this generation will tackle climate change’ (Defra 2006) – gives an example of this approach. It constructs, rather than claims, its own factuality.”

    There is a GREAT deal of money to be made by accepting the “challenge” of AGW. This includes government and UN funded scientists, who are paid to produce ideas/solutions, manufacturers of expensive sustainable energy alternatives (the shelf life of which is glossed over), CEOs of oil companies, farmers paid to produce biofuels, politicians climbing on a band wagon to garner votes (and in some cases money for themselves) by following the herd.

    On the other hand are numerous distinguished scientists and meteorologists fighting an uphill battle trying to suggest the emperor has unimpressive clothes. Patrick Moore, the founder of Greenpeace, regards the Paris Conference with total scorn and proudly calls “deniers” the Thin Green Line of common sense I feel a sense of relief. I read that the magazine Astronomy Now has not yet ruled out a mini ice age within

    All this is not to say that we should not try to reduce our dependence on imported fossil fuels for geo-strategic reasons, or to try to reduce airborne pollution and improve living conditions and transport. But we should not blindly increase energy costs, drive high energy manufacturing overseas where they can pollute while we also pay carbon “subsidies”. But nor should we preach to really third world developing countries that we know what is best for them.

    1. Denis Cooper
      December 13, 2015

      Well, the assumption that climate change is real and undesirable but can be combated was inserted into the EU treaties through the Treaty of Lisbon.

    2. oldtimer
      December 13, 2015

      The Rules of the Game, published in 2005 by Futerra on behalf of DEFRA. the Environment Agency and the DTI to name but three, should be added to your list of relevant publications. It set out “the principles of climate change communication” intended to change public attitudes to climate change. Well worth a read if you are unfamiliar with it. These rules are being followed to this day.

  34. Vanessa
    December 12, 2015

    The World, JR, has been warming since the last ice-age, of course it is getting warmer otherwise we would not survive and increase. If they are so clever as to be able to stop 0.5C then why can’t they forecast next summer’s weather or in 5 year’s time? “They” know nothing about how our weather develops and have spent zillions on changing all the graphs on temperature over the last 300 years – this is not the way to persuade those of us with a brain to believe their lies.

    As Ian Wragg says at the top “Agenda 21” is the population decrease policy. Most local councils have an Agenda 21 policy if you look at their websites. It is to decrease the population to about 1 billion (I think) and leave huge areas of the world unpopulated by awful humans but allow wildlife (what is left of it with so much CO2!) to flourish.

    How this decreased population will create a viable financial economy to build businesses and all the needs of this 1 billion I have no idea. Farming will not be allowed, or mining so I suppose all food will be manufactured out of chemicals – heaven knows where they will come from. The man who is responsible for all this drivel is a Canadian Socialist multi-millionaire called Maurice Strong – he died recently.

  35. Denis Cooper
    December 12, 2015

    “The best policy to limit population growth is a policy which promotes higher incomes for all. Family size usually falls through voluntary action as income rises.”

    No, the best policy is a policy which directly promotes smaller family sizes, not a policy which can only act indirectly to reduce family sizes over a much longer time scale, and possibly will not work at all.

    Once again I offer the colour-coded map of birth rates in different countries across the world which was recently published in the Telegraph:

    It is no coincidence that in general the countries with the highest birth rates tend to be the poorest, and also the most likely to be trouble spots.

    I accept that this is only correlation and that there may be reasons why endemic poverty will itself tend to lead to higher birth rates; but in the absence of a correspondingly rapid increase in the resources which are available to a country a high rate of population increase will inevitably be a major impediment to the improvement of the living standards of the population, and so any hope that this will quickly lead to lower birth rates will be disappointed.

    I have asked before how we in this country would have coped with an eightfold increase in population since the war, which is what has happened in Syria. 390 million, rather than 60 odd million now, does anybody think that would have been manageable?

  36. behindthefrogs
    December 12, 2015

    The sooner we move ahead with the policy of only providing child support and other tax reliefs for up to two children the better. This will not only have a small impact on the number of children being born but also help to limit the number of immigrants from both within and outside the EU. As this policy would apply to both residents and those from other EU countries there can be no objections from the EU.

    Quite simply no new claims for any child beyond the second unless that child is born as a result of rape or other ill treatment that has been proven in court.

    I would also restrict payments to those for children resident in the UK but recognise that there may be other legal issues like divorce that could make this more difficult to control.

  37. Ian wragg
    December 12, 2015

    If ever we needed evidence of the stupidity the DECC has just awarded subsidies for open cycle gas turbines and small diesel generators.
    So we build windmills and overseas with massive subsidy and then subsidise the most inefficient and polluting generators on earth.
    This of course is to comply with EU rules.
    No doubt Siemens will be providing the bulk of equipment.
    You couldn’t make it up.

  38. Ian wragg
    December 12, 2015

    Should read PV my phone has a mind of its own.

  39. Maureen Turner
    December 12, 2015

    For those of us who remain unconvinced in the yet to be proved science of AGW our reservations are now considered to be almost heretical so is it any wonder any counter thinking is swept aside.

    What is interesting is the “believers” use of the words weather and climate change as these appear to be conveniently adaptable to a particular event . I can’t recall the flooding of the Somerset Levels being referred to as the result of global warming but last week’s flooding in Cumbria most certainly has been given this classification. It couldn’t have
    anything to do with a conference going on across the Channel!

    JR refers to population growth, something that can be measured and should be far more concerning than the above, but it really is the last taboo which so far no one appears to wish to address. The population of our planet has more than doubled in the last 100 years and unchecked with exponential growth will on a graph eventually show a vertical line. The population of the UK is already above optimum for its landmass which can only result in a reduction in the quality of life especially if we continue with ever increasing migration.

    Mr. Redwood is correct in that the wealthier the nation the smaller the families but this is a cultural issue in some countries where the young are required to care for their elderly members. Perhaps the PM was correct when he said “Forget the green nonsense” as what is far more in need of wise heads is how to sensibly control population growth.


    1. Denis Cooper
      December 13, 2015

      “The population of our planet has more than doubled in the last 100 years and unchecked with exponential growth will on a graph eventually show a vertical line.”

      Actually it has doubled over the past 45 years. But the growth rate is now slowing, partly because people in the more prosperous countries are not even replacing themselves while women in some of the less developed countries are increasingly taking control of their fertility. There’s a chart here:

      “The chart above illustrates how world population has changed in history.

      At the dawn of agriculture, about 8000 B.C., the population of the world was approximately 5 million. Over the 8,000-year period up to 1 A.D. it grew to 200 million (some estimate 300 million or even 600, suggesting how imprecise population estimates of early historical periods can be), with a growth rate of under 0.05% per year.

      A tremendous change occurred with the industrial revolution: whereas it had taken all of human history until around 1800 for world population to reach one billion, the second billion was achieved in only 130 years (1930), the third billion in less than 30 years (1959), the fourth billion in 15 years (1974), and the fifth billion in only 13 years (1987).

      During the 20th century alone, the population in the world has grown from 1.65 billion to 6 billion.

      In 1970, there were roughly half as many people in the world as there are now.

      Because of declining growth rates, it will now take over 200 years to double again.”

      1. stred
        December 14, 2015

        The elite environmentalists do not mention popualation growth in Africa and other continents is that it would appear to be racist or colonialist. Oxfam would never consider supplying contraception, but prefers to assist uncontrolled birth rates by providing enough to get by for the present, but no security for old age but offspring. Perhaps they hope that solar and windmills will allow people to be distracted in the evenings by watching playing with their I phones instead of the usual entertainment.

        1. stred
          December 14, 2015

          ‘is that- should read- because.

  40. graham1946
    December 12, 2015

    How much more is this lot going to cost us, whilst the rest of the world make all kinds of promises, not intending to honour any of them? When will Cameron start new legislation and taxes to comply?

    Every time our government goes abroad for any purpose, they come back having promised the world another few billion.

    Perhaps we should take away Cameron’s passport.

    By the way, does his Jet run on non polluting electricity, or maybe an elastic band?

    On Newsnight last night, they were doing the usual climate change nonsense by pushing electric cars by saying they do not make any carbon footprint, whilst conveniently forgetting about their manufacture and charging and the short life of their batteries and the stuff that they are made of and their disposal. We can’t even guarantee to keep our lights and fridges on, yet the lunatics want us all to drive electric cars. Alright for the employees of the BBC of course, they never go more than a few miles out of the big cities and earn enough to buy the things. Expat Colin is correct – you cannot but marvel at the idiocy of the people in charge of our countries. Collective responsibility or collective insanity?

  41. Shieldsman
    December 12, 2015

    Your opening line – The world’s governments, large environmental quangos and companies have been locked in talks to save the planet.
    Will a much trumpeted and very expensive agreement of sorts achieve anything?
    If all the theories on AGW expounded and believed in by many scientists and all the groups meeting in Paris are accepted, the simple answer is nothing. It is already too late to stay within 2degrees of pre 1880 temperatures which the BBC would have us believe are necessary. Nature will be the final arbiter.

    With India, China and many other countries continuing to build and operate fossil fueled power plants until 2030 and conceivably beyond, it will keep the environmentalist and climatologist busy at their computers calculating the mega-tons of carbon dioxide being emitted into the atmosphere.

    The Cumbria floods resulted in Dame Julia Slingo saying “It’s too early to say definitively whether climate change has made a contribution to the exceptional rainfall. We anticipated a wet, stormy start to winter in our three-month outlooks, associated with the strong El Niño and other factors.
    “However, just as with the stormy winter of two years ago, all the evidence from fundamental physics, and our understanding of our weather systems, suggests there may be a link between climate change and record-breaking winter rainfall. Last month, we published a paper showing that for the same weather pattern, an extended period of extreme UK winter rainfall is now seven times more likely than in a world without human emissions of greenhouse gases.”

    Historically everyone should know that the Lake District is notoriously wet. A new record rainfall measured at Honister is being claimed as evidence that ‘desmond’ was exceptional. Heavy rainfall at Honister was not the reason Carlisle was flooded again, as the river Eden rises in the Pennines.
    The flood protection work carried out by the Environmental Agency was overwhelmed.
    If we are to believe the leader of the Liberal Democrats the flooding would not have occurred, but for the cut backs and failure to carry out essential work by the Environmental Agency.

    No doubt David Cameron will show largesse with borrowed money and throw a few more millions into the bottomless climate pot run by the UN, and who will pay the interest.
    This of course will do nothing to prevent future flooding in the UK, which will happen more and more due to increasing population and demand for housing built in the wrong places.

    Many of the problems associated with supposed climate change are due to a growing world population, with people living in the wrong places, often a hostile environment. Then we have the change of land use (destruction of the carbon sink rain forests) to satisfy the needs of a growing population. Over the centuries deserts have been created due to poor husbandry. Then we have the environmentalists (WWF) interfering and promoting the use vegetable oils instead of mineral oil, with more forest loss.

    In recent years the use of satellites to map the weather allows the meteorologist to see what is coming our way and make more accurate forecasts. Michael Fish would not be caught out today with the 1987 storm. Satellites can map the global surface temperature with a resulting annual mean temperature. This must be more accurate than the selected land stations used originally.

    Climatologists are still very much on a learning curve, claims by people like Ed Davey ‘ the science is settled’ are very stupid. Climate models projecting temperature change are being proven wrong by actual measurements. Weather buoys are providing more information on sea temperatures and provide an insight into the natural forces of nature, of which we still have a lot to learn.

  42. Denis Cooper
    December 12, 2015

    The good news is that the agreed deal is being widely condemned as far too weak by the usual barmy suspects – many of them partly funded by the taxpayer to shoot their mouths off with their complaints, of course. So there is a possibility that we will be left with some kind of economy, maybe we will even be able to keep the lights on.

    1. turbo terrier
      December 12, 2015

      Denis Cooper.

      Not if Empress Nick of La La land has her way.

      The people of dictatorship Scotland do not have a scobie to what is waiting in the wings come next April.

  43. Peter Davies
    December 12, 2015

    Watching rt this morning and George Galloway interviews no other than piers corbyn who actually sounded credible.

    This man made climate change thing is a con, many scientists have this view but have to keep quiet for fear of losing employment

  44. Antisthenes
    December 12, 2015

    If the climate change draft deal is agreed then most of the world will continue to increase their CO2 emissions which already is 64% of all emissions and the West will be forced to decrease it’s emissions. On top of which Western taxpayers will have to pay the rest 100 billion for the privilege of having their wealth creation base destroyed.

    A wonderful agreement. I think not. A new redistribution of wealth that even tops that which political and economic integration of the euro-zone will bring about. The UK’s foreign aid program and our EU contributions are piddling compared to this. Still stop both and we will have enough to pay our share of the 100 billion and at the same time subsidise clean energy projects so called as in reality they are not.

    Developing nations will be laughing all the way to the bank and the largess forked over being put mostly into their leaders Swiss accounts. At the same time sniggering at our stupidity whilst they continue to pay lip service to the agreement.

  45. Amanda
    December 12, 2015

    This week, there was a far more ‘grown up’ hearing in the US about the state of climate science ‘data or dogma’. I’d commend the evidence given in these papers to readers to learn a little more, and make up their own minds – thought experiments apart !!

  46. Amanda
    December 12, 2015

    Oh, and anyone wanting to listen to the programme that has got the BBC Trust writing dubious and expensive reports in balance to Quintin Letts, his programme on the Met Office is here.

  47. Michael Walzer
    December 12, 2015

    “The political brain is an emotional brain. It responds not to data but to instinct and feeling” Drew Westen.

  48. lojolondon
    December 12, 2015

    Dear John, I hope you will be studying this situation – I know you have an enquiring mind. I can suggest several excellent websites that conclusively prove that AGW is not happening, CO2 could never cause the alleged effects, and that there is no way of us affecting it in any way no matter how much money we waste.
    The challenge for you personally John, is largely to do with the BBC – to come out against their propaganda machine is to open yourself up to constant attacks and ridicule, only a retired politician such as Nigel Lawson dares to tell the truth.
    Now, let us say that for arguments sake I am right. The entire rich countries/poor countries argument is total garbage, as usual, you have the poor performers with their begging bowls held high, and organisations like the UN and IPPC extorting the West to contribute Billions of dollars to ‘charity’, with the added compulsion that rich countries mistakenly feel guilty about the situation so they have more success this way.
    This whole foreign aid scam is a massive transfer from poor people in rich countries to rich people in poor countries, we must resist at all costs, charity begins at home, and how can we justify spending money on ‘global warming’ in other continents when UK rivers are not dredged and Cumbria is under water?

  49. fedupsoutherner
    December 12, 2015

    Please remind me John why the UK is so intent on ruining its economy and getting rid of jobs while this is happening?!! As reported in the Telegraph today.

    A significant fall in EU carbon emissions as it pursues green energy was

    almost entirely cancelled out last year by soaring emissions from

    coal-burning India, new figures show.

    On current trends India will overtake the EU as the world’s third-largest

    emitter of carbon, which causes global warming, within two to three years,

    scientists have said.

  50. Dennis
    December 12, 2015

    Good heavens! JR mentioning population! He has woken up!! Good for him!

  51. ChrisS
    December 12, 2015

    Forget the Green Crap !

    I’m hopping mad about the sneaky release in the Autumn Statement of a proposal to make small businesses and the self employed file quarterly accounts to the Revenue !

    This Chancellor is looking more and more like a Socialist by the day.

    I am involved with three businesses, one of which is a small Limited Company which is registered for VAT. We already make quarterly VAT returns and annual accounts. Then there are two annual sets of Partnership returns and on top of that, individual annual tax returns for each partner.

    To move to quarterly reporting will mean, for my wife and I, a move from six sets of accounts and four VAT accounts to a total of twenty quarterly accounts plus the four VAT ones ! As has been reported in the press, there is very likely to be a £100 fine for each and every return filed even a day late.

    In future will we be able to dare to take a two week holiday for fear of missing a deadline?

    Who will pay the extra accountancy fees and for our time ?

    HMRC doesn’t even supply an online partnership filing program. Every year we have to buy two commercial copies just to make life easy for them to relieve us of far too much money.

    Thank goodness we don’t employ anyone or we would also have to file an extra four workplace pensions returns and yet another four for tax credits.

    This from the Government committed to slashing red tape ! What a joke !!!!

    Mr Redwood, you and your colleagues in the Awkward Squad need to ensure your leaders get a reality check and nip this crazy idea in the bud.

    1. turbo terrier
      December 12, 2015


      I understand you concerns.

      I owned a business in Spain and your books went to the accountant monthly and everybody paid IVA (Vat). The 12 monthly payments to my accountant was a lot less than I was paying in England. It tended to make a more even playing field especially when tendering for contracts and it also did hit the cash in hand operators as they had to prove their identity and their IVA registration when buying equipment etc

  52. Mercia
    December 12, 2015

    Sorry John that last post was intended for another blog, please ignore.

  53. Iain Moore
    December 12, 2015

    I am spitting mad after hearing some politician on the BBC’s PM program boasting that Britain is going to be the most generous country handing out money to developing counties for climate change.

    What is it with our useless politicians that as soon as they go abroad they become fiscally incontinent? All Cabinet members should have their passports confiscated for they can’t be trusted to look after the Tax Payers interests when they go abroad.

  54. getahead
    December 12, 2015

    “One of the strange features of the debate is the absence of much talk about population growth.”
    I have been saying for a long time that the best aid for Africa would be contraception in order to reduce population levels to what land can support. Off track slightly but connected.

  55. Ken Moore
    December 12, 2015

    Thank you to Dr Redwood for his departure from the menu of pre-approved Modern Conservative opinions.

    Population growth is a non PC subject. Closing down coal mines and steel mills is just fine but alluding to the fact we are inviting too many migrants from the developing world is not. Personal responsibility is also off the agenda as is suggesting newcomers have too many babies.

    On population growth… C02 limits are pegged to 1990 levels ..when the population was 57 million.
    The Uk is legally bound to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050..when the population will be potentially north of 80 million. We would need to make ruinous per capita decreases in CO2 emission to even approach this target. Signing up to this nonsensical racket only demonstrates our politicians are unfit for office. It is the elevation of ‘virtue signalling’ above reason and logic. I welcome Dr Redwood’s wish to have no part of it.

    Science and technology can stretch the envelope of energy efficiency a little but the laws of physics cannot be changed. Our politicians must literally be mad.

  56. Martin
    December 12, 2015

    I can only suggest some sort of tax on imports where the source country product does not have a CO2 reduction policy and pays the equivalent of Employer NICs for welfare/pensions etc.

    Whether it is feasible only tax experts can advise.

  57. hefner
    December 12, 2015

    195 countries led by socialists, fiesta in Highgate Cemetery tonight.

  58. Michael Walzer
    December 12, 2015

    Mercia, Ever wondered whether “virtue signalling” is not also a characteristic of a good deal of the commentators on this blog? This signalling seems to come from all angles, the direction of travel simply depending on the slant of the given support …
    Left-wing VS in the Gardian, Right-wing in the DM, “whatever” VS herein.

    December 12, 2015

    I guess religious people will be sitting back and honourably keeping shtum this Christmastime -: Not wishing to practice schadenfreude.

    Scientists. Well it has not dawned on them yet.

    Ideological and politically motivated scientists have taken the statistics which suit their thesis. They have “proved” Global Warming or at least Climate Change.
    They have painstakingly indicated the plight of Arctic creatures such as Polar Bears and Seals. Pointed out how they will be made extinct, dying with their lack of ice and snow habitats.
    So wrapped up with their new exciting Climate Change gravy train, they have forgotten their basic long-accepted scientific theories on evolution.
    The Polar Bear, according to their decades of research and “proven” scientific “evidence” evolved from the Brown Bear. Seals evolved from land mammals with legs. Frogs evolved from fish when “the waters grew less”.
    No ifs, no buts. The scientists have by their ridiculous championing of Climate Change indicated that Polar Bears, Seals, Frogs, Toads and other Amphibians cannot evolve but only die.
    One feels sorry for the duckbilled platypus. In their eyes caught betwixt beever and duck. Looks like it cannot evolve to be a beever again or a duck again but only die.
    However scientists have one saving grace, they have proved they can make monkeys of themselves. And, entangle themselves in myths and fantasies ad infinitum. God bless them… every… one.

  60. Lifelogic
    December 13, 2015

    World Government would be dreadful even worse than the USSR was, a government monopoly. enslaving all, and with no escape to alternative regimes. No competition from other systems of government or other levels of taxation.

  61. Lindsay McDougall
    December 13, 2015

    The problem is net CO2 emissions, not gross CO2 etc emissions. We don’t plant enough trees etc to absorb CO2, and the reason is that the human race takes up too much land. Opinion formers tell us that the rate of deforestation over the last 25 years is ONLY 50% of the rate over the previous 25 years. What sort of pseudo-intellectual numbskull would include the word ‘only’ in such a statement?

    At long, long last, Mr Redwood, a leading politician has identified population growth as a major contributory factor to the problem. Well done.

    So let’s deal with practical rememedies:
    (1) To achieve world ZPG, it is a good idea for individual Nation States to enforce ZPG.
    (2) Zero immigration would be a good contribution in the UK’s case.
    (3) Foreign aid to poor countries that refuse to end their population growth should be restricted to condoms and nothing else.
    (4) World religions that preach against family planning and birth control should be pilloried unmercifully and may incur sanctions.

  62. Denis Cooper
    December 13, 2015

    If a scientist feels the need to criminalise those who dissent from his theory then that suggests that he knows that his theory is weak and does not stand up to critical examination but he has a strong ulterior motive to get it accepted.

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