I’m always amused (sarcasm) when a scientific argument is put down by the use of a personal attack.
My all time favorite is the sheer hypocrisy of Catastrophic Climate Change Zealots who suggest more moderate scientists are merely under the pay of BIG OIL.
It’s a trend that emerged very, very early in the environmental movement and certainly picked up pace around the time of the Kyoto agreement. At the time, major US scientific think tanks suggested a more balanced and moderate approach to the handling of highly controversial theories. This resulted in them being labeled as collaborators to the very people who, the Global Warming movement deemed, were responsibly for the world about to end. Namely big oil, big industry and big corporations.
But what wasn’t known at the time, or was rather kept very quiet in the media, was that a major force behind the Global Warming movement was itself sponsored to the turn of millions, but those very organisations.
The guilty little secret of the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) was that it owed it’s very existence to two of the very largest examples of Big Oil. Because the CRU was created using sponsorship from British Petroleum (BP) and Royal Dutch Shell . Not to mention the Nuffield Foundation. A charitable organisation created by the owner of Morris Motor cars.
Currently the CRU is funded via grants from the US Department of Energy. Itself paid for via special taxation from major industries. So… indirectly, it’s the same source of funding then. But then you could argue that “it’s all for a good cause” – if you are biased that is.
So next time someone suggests that more balanced estimates are merely being projected because the scientists are being paid for by big oil. Remember who’s saying that and where their funds come from.
But that’s industry, not particularly corporations. So how about this little gem. This is taken from the Wikipedia article on the subject. Heavily policed for negative changes. My comments are in blue.
The first director of the unit was Professor Hubert Lamb. He had led research into climatic variation at the Met Office (that bastion of accuracy, ho ho) and was chair of the UN’s World Meteorological Organisation, which already studied climate trends and the effect of pollution upon them.The possibility of major weather changes and flooding attracted attention to the unit and sponsorship by major insurance companies wanting to mitigate their potential losses . Prior to the Unit’s establishment, it had widely been believed by the meteorological establishment that the climate was essentially constant and unvarying.
This is a totally false statement. It has been known for a very long time that the climate is constantly changing. Significant research into the ice ages had already been carried out prior to the 1971 inception of the CRU. This statement only goes towards trying to create a heroic position for Lamb et al.
Lamb and others in the climatological community had for years argued that the climate system was in fact highly variable on timescales of decades to centuries and longer. The establishment of the CRU enabled Lamb and his colleagues to focus on this issue and eventually to win the argument decisively.
How heroic of them. If it was true that is. Only it isn’t, the debate was started a long time earlier by better scientists.
Of course, the bigger question would be. Just why would an oil company fund research that was going to push up the price of petrol (gas) for “environmental” reasons. I wonder… 🙂
 Michael Sanderson (2002), The history of the University of East Anglia, Norwich, p. 285, ISBN 9781852853365