Five questions for Lord Lawson and Benny Peiser

The Chair and Director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation appear before a Commons this afternoon. Left Foot Forward sets out 5 questions they must answer.

The Chairman and Director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation appear before the Science and Technology Select Committee this afternoon. Left Foot Forward sets out five questions they should be asked.


1. Who funds the Global Warming Policy Foundation?

Lord Lawson has written in the Independent on Sunday:

“the GWPF was “funded entirely by voluntary donations from a number of private individuals and charitable trusts. In order to make clear its complete independence, it does not accept gifts from either energy companies or anyone with a significant interest in an energy company”.”

Who are these private individuals and charitable trusts?


2. Why is the GWPF sharing offices with the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining?

The GWPF are based at 1 Carlton House Terrace, SW1Y 5DB.

Also at this address is the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, which “exists to promote and develop all aspects of materials science and engineering, geology, mining and associated technologies, mineral and petroleum engineering and extraction metallurgy, as a leading authority in the worldwide materials and mining community.”


3.What links does Lord Lawson have with big oil?

Lord Lawson told Channel 4 News that, “I have no links to oil companies of any kind”.

But the Central Europe Trust – which he chairs and in which he has “significant shareholdings” – claim as clients BP Amoco, Royal Dutch/Shell Group, Texaco, and Total Fina Elf.


4.Why does the GWPF’s academic advisory council include a number of climate sceptics?

The aim of the GWPF “is to provide the most robust and reliable economic analysis and advice”.

Why then does their small academic advisory council include well known climate sceptics including:

Ian Plimer, the author of “Heaven and Earth – Global Warming: The Missing Science”

• Philip Stott who has written that “global warming is a faith

• Sir Ian Byatt who has faced calls to be sacked as chairman of Scotland’s water regulator for his thoughts on climate change; and

• Professor Richard Lindzen who appeared on the Great Global Warming Swindle.


5. Why does the GWPF’s board of trustees include a known climate sceptic?

The Liverpool Daily Post quotes remarks made by GWPF trustee, the Bishop of Chester:

The row followed the Bishop of Chester’s speech in a House of Lords debate on energy, in which he said discussion about the causes of global warming was “still open”.

Describing himself as a “scientist in a previous incarnation”, Dr Forster – whose diocese includes Wirral – said there was no consensus among climate scientists that “carbon dioxide levels are the key determinant”.

And he told peers: “Climate science is a notoriously imprecise area, because the phenomena under investigation are so large.

“That makes precision difficult to achieve.”

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27 Responses to “Five questions for Lord Lawson and Benny Peiser”

  1. Oxford Kevin


    Thanks for the grammar lesson. I am sure that you will provide me with more.

    I meant by ambiguous that the papers in question did not challenge the theory of climate but also did not support the theory of climate change.

    In other words Oreskes was correct and Peiser kept his list of 34 papers for a year so that the AGW skeptics could run with the story and they did.

    Thanks again for the lesson.


  2. Will Straw

    Thanks for the comments:

    John 77, Anon, Rory – this is not a smear or innuendo, these are legitimate concerns that many in the environmental movement has about the GWPF. Given the subject matter and their claim to want “to provide the most robust and reliable economic analysis and advice”, it is completely legitimate to ask who funds them and which axes they have to grind.

    Rory – As it happens we’ve not had a penny yet from CWU but we’re still hoping for a donation.

    Steve – why don’t you read the piece before writing angry comments. We didn’t use the phrase “climate deniers” once (I regard Lawson as a sceptic rather than a denier although others would disagree; the jury is out on Peiser). Nonetheless, the use of phrase “climate denier” is legitimate shorthand for someone who denies the existence of manmade climate change. It has absolutely nothing to do with the holocaust except in the eye of the beholder.

    Oxford Kevin – many thanks for your supportive words. Peiser is a dodgy character.


  3. Anon E Mouse

    Kevin – No comments on Phil Jones and his remarks at the committee yesterday?

    Do you think it is acceptable to stifle perfectly reasonable questioning, perhaps to contribute to the questioners thirst for knowledge, by acting in such a way?

    (I just heard him on R4 so please don’t start saying he hadn’t sent “awful emails”. Let’s stick to the facts please Kevin).

    I suppose the fact we have just had the coldest winter since 1978 means nothing to you?

    (Oh let me guess Kevin although you localise GW effects when they suit your case eg Amazon rainforest but not when they don’t)

  4. Ned


    Altogether now, WEATHER IS NOT THE SAME AS CLIMATE…seriously how many more times?

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    […] sceptic Lord Lawson has again failed to answer questions over who funds the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) during his appearance at the Science and […]

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