Secretive Irish Climate Science Denier Group Steps Up 'Bizarre' Parliamentary Lobbying 22:27 Sep 27 0 comments
EU Commission proposes new strict EU-wide rules on single-use plastics 12:29 May 29 0 comments
Protecting WIldlife in Ireland from Hedge Cutting and Gorse Burning 23:37 Feb 23 0 comments
WRECK THE « CLIMATE CHANCE » SUMMIT! At Nantes, France, from 26 to 28 September 2016 20:04 Jul 17 0 comments
Why the corporate capture of COP21 means we must Kick Big Polluters Out of climate policy 22:47 Dec 03 3 commentsmore >>
Russia Holds Over 1700 Documented Ukrain... Sun May 15, 2022 22:53 | Field Empty
What Could Ever Be More Truthful Than a ... Sat May 14, 2022 22:27 | Field Empty
There Has Been a Series of Ukrainian Com... Sat May 14, 2022 01:19 | Anti-Empire
No More Trash â€” New Commenting Policy Fri May 13, 2022 23:54 | Anti-Empire
Another Week Another 78 Donetsk Soldiers... Fri May 13, 2022 21:04 | Anti-Empire
A Blog About Human Rights
UN human rights chief calls for priority action ahead of climate summit Sat Oct 30, 2021 17:18 | Human Rights
5 Year Anniversary Of Kem Ley?s Death Sun Jul 11, 2021 12:34 | Human Rights
Poor Living Conditions for Migrants in Southern Italy Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:14 | Human Rights
Right to Water Mon Aug 03, 2020 19:13 | Human Rights
Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights
Keir Starmer to be Investigated by Police Over ?Beergate? Fri May 06, 2022 17:00 | Will Jones
On Energy, the EU Is Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place Fri May 06, 2022 15:58 | Noah Carl
The Toxic Perfectionism Young People Have Learned From Social Media and Covid Conformity Fri May 06, 2022 13:03 | Tom Shaw
WHO?s Dubious Model that Claims the Real Pandemic Death Toll is 15 Million ? and 5 Million of Them A... Fri May 06, 2022 07:00 | Will Jones
News Round-Up Fri May 06, 2022 01:46 | Will Jones
Voltaire, international edition
The Pentagon organizes Ukraine's victory at Eurovision 2022 Sun May 15, 2022 18:11 | en
China Concerned About US Military Biological Research in Ukraine Sun May 15, 2022 15:33 | en
Turkey opposed to Finland and Sweden joining NATO Sat May 14, 2022 13:40 | en
Saudi Arabia-US relations going to pieces Sat May 14, 2022 06:43 | en
AfriCom in Somaliland Fri May 13, 2022 20:50 | en
Secretive Irish Climate Science Denier Group Steps Up 'Bizarre' Parliamentary Lobbying
Press Release 25th Sept 2018
Climate denial group the Irish Climate Science Forum (ICSF) has significantly escalated its lobbying campaign to prevent climate action.
Its seventh talk, which once again bars media and NGOs, takes place on Wednesday September 26 in Dublin, and features William van Wijngaarden, who is expected to make his oft-repeated claim that the greenhouse gas influence of agricultural emissions are “significantly less than hitherto estimated by the IPCC”.
As a result of the strong recommendations arising from a Citizens’ Assembly report on climate change issued late last year, the Irish parliament recently convened a Joint Oireachtas Committee on Climate Action (JOCCA) to examine the Assembly’s findings and make recommendations for action to government.
Ireland is one of the worst performing countries in the EU in terms of meeting its mandated obligations on emissions reduction, largely due to the lobbying power of key interest groups, including the agri-industrial and transport sectors. Instead of meeting its 2020 EU obligation to achieve a 20 percent cut in emissions versus a benchmark of 2005, Ireland is currently on track to achieve “at most” a one percent emissions cut, according to Environmental Protection Agency estimates.
The ICSF submission to the JOCCA, which has been seen by DeSmog UK, runs to 25 pages and includes almost 100 references. None of the people whose names accompany the ICSF submission have relevant qualifications or expertise in climate science. No scientific advisors are identified.
The document was submitted by the chairman of the ICSF, Jim O’Brien, a retired engineer. The submission was ‘supported’ by nine other named individuals, mainly retired engineers. They include Former Siemens and Science Foundation Ireland chairman Brian Sweeney and Dr Ed Walsh, former chair of the Irish Council for Science Technology and Innovation.
The submission, entitled ‘Latest Climate Science, Sept 2018’ is a mish mash of charts and graphics from a range of contrarian and denier sources, including the London-based Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) and its references section is a who’s who of climate science denial, including John Christsy, Richard Lindzen, Judith Curry, Roy Spencer, William Happer, Matt Ridley and Willie Soon.
Among its claims are that current global temperature trends continue below IPCC model predictions and that ‘recent research’ shows lower climate sensitivity than estimated by the IPCC. The main source for the latter is retired meteorologist, Ray Bates, founder of the ICSF. It also quotes papers by Lindzen and Yong-Sang Choi which have been thoroughly debunked.
According to John Sweeney, Emeritus Professor at the Irish Climate Analysis and Research Unit, Maynooth University, the ICSF submission: “cannot be taken seriously by any responsible atmospheric scientist”.
He added that it: “perpetuates long-debunked science, such as the non-existent temperature hiatus, the myth of discrepancies in thermometer observations and the spurious explanation of urban heat islands as the cause of higher temperatures on land”.
Also commenting on the ICSF submission, Green Party senator, Grace O’Sullivan told DeSmog UK: “it puts forward cherry picked data that does not represent either the consensus or the lived reality on any of these issues. They claim to be a sceptical group, checking the science. Yet every single conclusion on every single issue comes out against mitigation measures. Surely this is a bizarre and unlikely coincidence?”
Senator O’Sullivan added that she could not “begin to fathom the group’s true aims and motives, but these materials need to be viewed with the deepest ‘skepticism’ themselves”. She added that the work of the committee “is too important to be set off course with distractions and misrepresentations such as these”.
DeSmog UK made numerous efforts to contact ICSF chair, Jim O’Brien, to ask him about the submission, as well as the funding and ongoing lobbying activities of the Forum, but he did not respond to an invitation to comment.
Despite the fact that the ICSF is overtly engaged in political lobbying, DeSmog UK could not find any evidence that this group has registered with the Irish government’s register of lobbyists.
Ireland’s Regulation of Lobbying Act requires all individuals and groups engaged in lobbying to register and verify their details on the Lobbying.ie website and make written returns every four months. Environmental groups such as the Stop Climate Chaos coalition and An Taisce publish details of their lobbying returns as required, but nothing has been filed on behalf of the ICSF at the time of writing.
The ICSF has recently launched its website, where it sets out its contrarian agenda plainly, attempting to claim the IPCC ‘got it wrong’ on key issues. From there, it revisits debunked denier talking points, such as: “there are solar-related and other natural influences on earth’s climate… the relative magnitudes of these influences may be comparable to or possibly even greater than those of GHG.”
“ICSF members do not foresee a planetary climate emergency”, it continues. The organisation claims that its members are “characterized by an open and enquiring mind on climate science, driven by the imperative of objectivity without any vested interests”.
This open-mindedness does not extend to answering media questions, however. Its events have hand-picked attendees lists, the group has a secret membership and officer list, and there is no visible process for applying to join.
It has also yet to explain how it has funded seven meetings involving international guest speakers. It claims to be “modestly self-funded through member contributions only”.
The ICSF’s ‘Useful Links’ page gives an insight into its approach, in which legitimate sites such as the AMA and Climate Home are interspersed with denier blogs such as Watts Up With That and SEPP plus pseudoscience from Bjorn Lomborg. The ICSF chooses not to provide a link to the UN’s official advisor on climate science, the IPCC.