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Monday 20 June 2011

Del Boy And The Greenpeace Man

Batteries suitably recharged following his recent sabbatical, Maily Telegraph blogger James “saviour of Western civilisation” Delingpole is back on the case of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Del Boy has once more declared victory, as it is now claimed that a Greenpeace report has been made the basis for IPCC material.

Sadly for Del Boy, he has put his trust in sources that are just as zealously attempting to rubbish climate change science as he is, and the result is that he has ended up reading what he wants to, coming to a spurious conclusion all for the sake of not being bothered to do a little Googling.

The author whose presence has caused the ruckus is one Sven Teske, who does indeed work for Greenpeace. Teske part authored a report which was published under the joint auspices of Greenpeace and the European Renewable Energy Council, although three other organisations contributed authors to it.

It has been claimed that scenarios from this report have been included in the latest IPCC report on Climate Change Mitigation and Costs [.pdf]. Whether this is, as claimed in Del Boy’s main source, “absolute top end”, or otherwise misleading or unrepresentative, I will leave to others to decide, or whether Teske was “reviewing his own work”, a claim not backed up with anything more substantial than bluster.

What is certain is that Delingpole’s assertion that Teske was “in charge of writing” the IPCC report is plain flat wrong. And his quoting Mark Lynas as telling “Had it been an oil industry intervention ... Greenpeace ... would be screaming blue murder” demonstrates a woeful ignorance of the broad church that is the IPCC authorship.

Quite apart from Greenpeace not being the only Non Governmental Organisation (NGO) contributing (and why should NGOs, which covers bodies like the Max Planck Institute, be excluded?), the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) draws on the resources of such greenie bodies as the RAND Corporation, the World Bank, the International Atomic Energy Authority (IAEA), McKinsey, Toyota, and Exxon Mobil.

Yes, Exxon Mobil – that would be “an oil industry intervention”, then. So when James Delingpole sneers “what kind of a bizarro, warped, intellectually challenged, cognitively dissonant eco-fascistic nutcase would you have to be to think otherwise?” the reply is inevitably “one who could be arsed to do a few minutes of his own research, rather than cutting and pasting someone else’s”.

Also, I will be waiting for the IPCC to respond to the criticism, rather than calling for the hanging jury beforehand. That’s the difference between rational discussion, and screaming denunciation. I’m sure Del Boy will understand.

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