Climate change.

I have not been following this debate as obsessively as I once did. I haven't added many posts on the subject since early 2014. I'm a climate change sceptic: I think there are huge uncertainties (good and bad) about the phenomenon of anthropogenic global warming but above all about what policy - inevitably quite weak - will likely achieve.

Prof Cox, fusion and the wonder of risk

Brian Cox has already suggested that mankind is alone, and should celebrate the wonder of it.  But, as he is foremost in reminding us, we are also the shards of star-dust that have become conscious and clever. Indeed, in creating industrial scale fusion reactors, if we ever do, we will have succeeded in not merely imitating our sun, but have found how to deploy its forces. Read more...

Published

20 February 2015

Somerset Levels flooding: who’s levelling with us?

It's 30 years since I spent serious time researching the Somerset Levels and its precarious balance between farming and wildlife, which of course hinges on how much flooding to allow. That was for my book, Wild Britain. Where are we now? Read more...

Published

12 February 2014

RDN on BBC WM on AGM

I had a brief outing on the BBC's Birmingham and Midlands local radio station, WM. Is the present flooding caused by manmade global warming, they asked? They had just trailed the Met Office's Julia Slingo as saying that climate change had caused the storms (though actually her remarks, though a little incautious, were fairly nuanced). Anyway, I was extremely cautious.... Read more...

Published

12 February 2014

RDN on LBC on AGW, Met Office & PMQs

I had an interesting outing on Iain Dale's LBC show yesterday, invited to comment on the Met Office's apparent disavowal of David Cameron's remarks in Prime Minister’s Questions on the recent storms and possible, likely or probable links to climate change. I remarked, perhaps a little casually, that the Met Office's tune - I should perhaps have emphasised tone - had changed somewhat. Once quite the cheer-leader for what one might disparagingly call alarmism, it now seems to emphasise uncertainty. Read more...

Published

10 January 2014

RDN et al: BP & Deepwater Horizon’s long term effects

Regular readers will know that in 2010 I risked saying that BP's catastrophic accident and spill at its Deepwater Horizon drill in the Gulf of Mexico might not be as dire for the environment, the oil industry or BP as was being predicted at the time. I was thrilled to be asked to contribute to a Voice of Russia  (VoR debate: Has BP paid the price for oil spills?, 10 December 2013) panel discussion on these themes.... Read more...

Published

11 December 2013

RDN on sceptics & AGW at the RAC

I have been asked to debate the proposition that sceptics are winning the climate change argument (at the RAC in Pall Mall, 28 November 2013). The answer, I think, is a nice sceptical, "yes", and "no". Read more...

Published

27 November 2013

RDN in BBC Wildlife on trust and science

It was fun to be interviewed by Stuart Blackman for his piece, "You Can Trust Me, I'm a scientist..." in the Agenda/Analysis pages of the August edition of the BBC's Wildlife magazine. Mr Blackman did good work dissecting a horribly intransigent issue, but I'd just add this... Read more...

Published

11 August 2013

How I saved the BBC from the right-wing

All right. My headline may be over-egging things a little. Still, I am pretty sure I helped save the BBC from making a fool of itself over climate change politics. (If I'm wrong, and someone in a position to know lets me know in confidence, I'll cheerfully take this blog down.) The issue is especially interesting to me since I want the BBC to be scrapped but I don't really share the right's horror of its supposed left-wing bias or even the current blogosphere outrage at the BBC's climate coverage. Read more...

Published

15 November 2012

RDN at a climate change conference

In April 2012 I attended a climate change conference and want just to nail some of the arguments aired, as I see them. (It was held under Chatham House, "no names, no pack-drill" rules.) Read more...

Published

04 April 2012
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