Originally published on Climate Liability News.
Climate change-related lawsuits,...
A network of lobbyists, politicians and campaign groups is pushing the UK towards a hard-Brexit, with the aim of axing environmental protection in the name of free-market ideology.
Powerful vested interests are at play, with a network of decision-makers and companies that profit from climate inaction overlapping with a cabal of climate science deniers eager to limit global action to cut emissions.
Over the past four years, DeSmog has been tracking this network. We’ve now mapped over 2,000 connections between its actors operating at the highest levels of political and corporate life in the UK, US and Europe.
British companies are increasingly moving their carbon credits into new offshore accounts to get around punitive measures from the EU and in preparation for a no-deal Brexit, DeSmog can reveal.
At least 35 companies have filed for EU emissions trading scheme (ETS) accounts in the Netherlands in recent months. Without these accounts, companies potentially face having millions of pounds’ worth of tradable carbon credits locked in the UK in the case of a no-deal Brexit, preventing companies from selling the permits. The new accounts brings the number of offshore carbon credit accounts traced by DeSmog up to 69.
We’ve all heard the dodgy arguments: ‘the science is uncertain’, ‘climate change is natural, not down to humans’, ‘science has been hijacked by politics’… Now a new cache of documents sheds light on the origins of the disinformation.
In another verse of a now familiar refrain, a fossil fuel industry group in the 1990s publicly promoted arguments to undermine confidence in climate science while internally acknowledging their products were driving up temperatures.
Veteran broadcaster David Attenborough has expressed his disappointment at the rise of climate science denial in the US and Australia and called on voters to respond.
Referencing the rise of climate science denial in some countries while giving evidence to a committee of MPs in the UK, Attenborough said he was “sorry that there are people in power and internationally, notably the United States, but also in Australia” where “those voices are clearly heard”. He said he hoped the “electorate will actually respond” to public figures that promote climate science denial.
A recently published report has called into question the efficacy of land-based solutions being pushed by NGOs and major oil companies alike to mitigate climate change.
Natural climate solutions (NCS) — including programs referred to as reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) — represent a body of land-based approaches for capturing carbon from the atmosphere and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. NCS proposals range from enhanced forest management to conservation agriculture and ecosystem restoration.
The UK’s principal climate science denial campaign group, the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), has appointed one of its donors, Dr Jerome Booth, as a trustee.
Booth is chairman of Anglia Ruskin University’s board of governors, and an economist and investor with a focus on emerging markets and international development. He is also currently a visiting professor at Cass Business School in London, having previously worked as a Lecturer in Economics at Oxford University’s Christ Church college and as an executive officer for the former Department of Trade and Industry.
The UK has recently committed to breaking even on the greenhouse gas emissions generated by its economy. This means that for every tonne of carbon dioxide released, a tonne will be captured or locked away elsewhere. It’s a nifty concept, known as ‘net zero’, but it relies on accurately, honestly, counting emissions. And already, countries are undertaking what teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg has called “creative carbon accounting” to balance their books.
Nowhere is this more apparent than in the biomass industry. It burns waste or wood to generate energy, much like coal. Biomass also emits carbon-dioxide and other greenhouse gases —again, much like coal.
Unlike coal, however, biomass emissions are being kept off the carbon dioxide balance sheet for most nations, in a way that campaigners allege is dishonest.
How did Nigel Lawson become big in Spain? With a little help from his powerful friends, of course.
Spain’s former Prime Minister José María Aznar has actively promoted the work of climate science deniers including former UK chancellor Lawson through a thinktank based just behind Madrid’s Ritz hotel, an investigation by La Marea’s Climatica, DeSmog’s Spanish-language partner, reveals.