News that the BBC continues to sing from the greens' hymnsheet is never hard to come by and so we can turn to the latest news with a sense of weary inevitability rather than any great surprise. The Today programme interview with Brian Hoskins and Nigel Lawson on the subject of the winter floods was, as readers no doubt recall, the subject of a concerted campaign from green activists and, with a certain predictability, a formal complaint or two. Anyone who has ever dealt with the BBC Editorial Standards unit will know that it can take months to get a response and years to get a ruling, but wheels seems to have been oiled to a remarkable extent for this green-tinged complaint and the Guardian now seems to have got hold of the findings, just months after the offending programme appeared:
Reviewing the broadcast, the BBC's head of editorial complaints, Fraser Steel, took a dim view. "Lord Lawson's views are not supported by the evidence from computer modelling and scientific research," Steel says, "and I don't believe this was made sufficiently clear to the audience … Furthermore the implication was that Lord Lawson's views on climate change were on an equal footing with those of Sir Brian." And they aren't. Sceptics have their place in the debate, Steel says in his provisional finding, but "it is important to ensure that such views are put into the appropriate context and given due (rather than equal) weight." Chong is only partially satisfied. He'd like a right of reply and perhaps a balancing programme. And others say "due weight" should mean not having Lawson on at all.