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Discussion > Log of BBC Climate bias

Evidence is evidence
but it can various levels of robustness to it
So people usually say that Anecdotal Evidence is unreliable ..and the counter side is "scientific evidence"
it is true that a scientific approach should yield on average much more robust evidence
.. but evidence out of a scientific institution can be total garbage
and the evidence produced by some woman in her garbage can be much more robust.

Theory is theory
and can be very interesting

And it is true what you say that scientific institutions can come up with a theory, back it with dodgy evidence and get a policy implemented, and then the institutions can be wedded to the theory even though later evince show the theory to be weak
eg the idea that replacing butter with margarine will reduce heart disease
or that DDT is so dangerous it should never be used.

There are pages like
and there Erebus is mentioned in the comments and then shot down.

Then in 2012 vukcevic claimed that Erebus is so near the south pole
and Icelandic volcanoes are 20 degrees further away

Jun 23, 2019 at 11:49 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

BTW The Wikipedia page quickly dismisses the Erebus theory
but then breaks its source rules
cos the source is just a webpage marked FAQ discussion
The arguments might be very good there, but a random webpage isn't supposed to be cited as a Wikipedia page.

Jun 23, 2019 at 11:59 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

BTW my three comments here at the top of the page are directed to @TinyCO2 and his theory about Mount Erebus being the main reason for ozone depletion.

Cambridge U says
"NO2 is not a primary volcanic gas but is probably formed by thermal fixation of atmospheric nitrogen at the hot surface of the lava lake.
We have suggested that Erebus is the main point source for NO2 (and very likely other reactive nitrogen oxides) in the Antarctic troposphere."

Jun 23, 2019 at 12:07 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Ravishing Rabbit
I once spent some time chatting to two American atmospheric chemists who were being honoured for their work on the photochemical reactions between CFCs and ozone. They were very impressive. I believe the evidence linking the two is equally impressive. CFCs were detected in the Antarctic stratosphere and were increasing. The complex interaction between CFCs and ozone is well studied in the lab, and the increasing loss of stratospheric ozone in Antarctica was accompanied by increasing amounts of CFCs. Ozone loss in Antarctica is a consequence of the very cold stratosphere there and AFAIK the only competing explanation for the increasing ozone hole was that it was associated with the decreasing temperature of the Antarctic stratosphere.

Jun 23, 2019 at 12:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterAK

And it is true what you say that scientific institutions can come up with a theory, back it with dodgy evidence and get a policy implemented, and then the institutions can be wedded to the theory even though later evince show the theory to be weak
eg the idea that replacing butter with margarine will reduce heart disease [..]

Jun 23, 2019 at 11:49 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Indeed. What troubles me much is that the ozone-depletion theory was well in place before the Antarctic ozone-hole was properly observed. They had no way of knowing what was normal and what normal variability looked like, so it was an absolute slam dunk for the alarmist camp when they got some data showing "a seasonal hole". I fell for it too.
Then, a few years later, I also recall reading an article saying that the hole was already disappearing faster than expected. I should have smelt the rat at that point. It strongly suggests that what they were really observing was natural variability in action, probably not much related to human CFC production.

While I was doing my PhD at UW Seattle one of the new star professors was an ozone man. Did he really know anything about the reasons for ozone hole formation? With hindsight, almost certainly not. He was an honest femto-second laser spectroscopist doing the best he could to get funding for expensive lasers.

To this day, I think the rapid success of implementing the Montreal Protocol paved the way for what we are now suffering from vis-a-vis the anti-CO2 campaign. Government knows that you get what you fund for and researchers know that researching potential disaster gets funded.

Jun 23, 2019 at 8:35 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Jun 23, 2019 at 8:35 PM | michael hart

But thanks to Patent Laws, the money kept flowing for DuPont:

Regulation and DuPont

"In 1978 the United States banned the use of CFCs such as Freon in aerosol cans, the beginning of a long series of regulatory actions against their use. The critical DuPont manufacturing patent for Freon ("Process for Fluorinating Halohydrocarbons", U.S. Patent #3258500) was set to expire in 1979. In conjunction with other industrial peers DuPont formed a lobbying group, the "Alliance for Responsible CFC Policy," to combat regulations of ozone-depleting compounds.[24] In 1986 DuPont, with new patents in hand, reversed its previous stance and publicly condemned CFCs.[25] DuPont representatives appeared before the Montreal Protocol urging that CFCs be banned worldwide and stated that their new HCFCs would meet the worldwide demand for refrigerants.[25]"

Jun 23, 2019 at 9:26 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Indeed, GC. Never was so much so convenient for so many.

Today we have energy companies that supply gas doing very well thank you very much from the elimination of coal as a base-load electricity supply. They know we can't do without fossil fuels but don't actually say so out loud, preferring to grab the tiger by the tail and use public sentiment to politically eliminate the main competitor from the market.

In between times, we also had the promotion of diesels to save the planet, except now it is admitted that they won't, and that they have other issues. Something that was well known at the time, but hey, when did obvious truth and facts ever get in the way of an environmental crusade.

Environmentalists just don't see how they are being played like a fiddle. In some ways that is one of the saddest things. There is always a genuine need for intelligently informed environmental protest groups. Yet they are so predictable in their luddite rejectionism that they are simply begging to be taken advantage of by others with quite different aims and objectives.

Jun 24, 2019 at 1:26 AM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Sunday BBC Radio Lincolnshire chose to tweet this
\\ A mock funeral service to protest inaction in the face of the climate emergency
has been taking place in front of Lincoln Cathedral.
@XRLincolnshire say they want to raise awareness about the county’s vulnerability to rising sea levels.

Is that news or PR ?

Jul 8, 2019 at 2:56 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Prog that went to old system of airing both sides
There was a Radio 3 doco on Thoreau
They are Walden Pond and gave a free advert to the guy running the Walden Climate Change project
but then they cut to the guy from the Cato Institute pointed out that the greens had no right to claim Thoreau cos he was very much a conservative and he was very much for personal responsibility instead of lots of laws and big government.
, "That government is best which governs least."
Indeed, he says, men will someday be able to have a government that does not govern at all.

He is libertarian and his values of conserving nature and anti-slavery come from that angle.

Aug 17, 2019 at 10:33 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Always ask "Is this news, or is it Public Relations ?"
Thus you realise BBCnews, ITVnews, SkyNews are actually Public Relations agencies which specialise in giving platforms and constructing narratives to push their pet AGENDAS.

Each Day over on Unthreaded @MarkHodgson is able to show that the BBC produce about 6 PR stories to push their GreenDream and Global Warming Alarmism agendas

It is almost impossible for us mere mortals to keep up with this torrent.

Sep 18, 2019 at 12:32 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Today they pushed BBC briefing on Energy - how do I use it?
This is now backed by a Harra video?
Has Harra got HIV ?.. very gaunt

I expect his claims are bogus as usual
You guys have gone down a rabbit hole
cos it's not a still image.
Rather the page has a Harra video
and the image is from a montage of rapid epilepsy inducing video clips at the beginning

Claim #0 that the average British household is using less electricity each year
I can believe that cos older TVs and lights drew more power before and threw it off as heat
(so your heating use was a touch less then)
Mind you if you get divorced or go on on more nights away the household energy use is lower.

Harra Claim #1 It's partially due to the efficiency standards imposed by the EU (fancy EU graphic behind him)

Harra Claim #2
Visit to vacuum museum,' oh look the EU limited vacuum power to 900W, see how we can get good suction at just 440W.
Roger asserts "that's a quarter of the power of a 1,800W machine"

Emm AFAIK a a sports car doesn't use maximum fuel, when it goes downhill, and so a big vacuum motor won't actually draw full power normally.
(BTW in a separate case Dyson got the EU efficiency labels thrown own)

Harra Claim #3
"Taxes and grants are another way of getting us to use less energy"

Translation : They tax the poor to pay for SUBSIDIES of gimmicks rich people buy
Harra 'an electric car pays no Road Tax, and only 5% electricity tax'
Against a £145pa and 60% petrol tax"

(emm leccy fuel has paid a mining tax, and the gov will need to eventually tax EVs to pay for roads etc

Harra Claim #4
"Fast fashion is a MASSIVE user of energy"

(hmm energy used in a products manufacture is roughly proportionate to retail price so a fashionista who buys £600 of clothes/year doesn't use as much energy a Beeboid refurbishing their Tuscan villa for £6K)
.. footage of Oxfam shop manager
"Fast fashion does IMMENSE DAMAGE to the ENVIRO and the WORLD'S POOREST PEOPLE"
(wacky claim)

Harra Claim #45
Business is saving leccy : eg A Derbyshire quarry has sensors on equipment , eg conveyors switch off when there is no material on them.

(A empty conveyor actually draws less power, than a full one anyway)

Harra's take away "And this won't solve Britain's *energy problems* but it will help"
(Hmm that's the psychological framing PR-trick : he frames it as a PROBLEM, yet strip away taxes and Fossil Fuels are almost free)

Sep 18, 2019 at 2:00 PM | Unregistered Commenterstewgreen

take away "And this won't solve Britain's *energy problems* but it will help"
(Hmm that's the psychological framing PR-trick : he frames it as a PROBLEM, yet strip away taxes and Fossil Fuels are almost free)

Sep 18, 2019 at 2:00 PM | Unregistered Commenterstewgreen

It's the politics of the futile gesture, making expensive, often counterproductive, attempts to solve an insoluble problem. Like "the war on drugs", particularly in the USA where a large fraction of the prison population is poor black men serving time for trivial marijuana offences. So much wastage of human resources and human lives, now feeding a private prison-industrial complex which has lobbyists and a political life of its own. And all built upon the perceived need to "do something" about drug use, even though the solutions are worse than the problems.

BBC-Harrabin is cast from the same mould. Greenery is so often about restricting the personal consumption choices of other people. If a man wishes to have three drinks or three scoops of ice-cream instead of one or two shouldn't it be his choice where he spends his excess disposable income? Some people may choose to forgo drinks and ice-cream altogether in order to be able to go on an occasional extra flight to a foreign destination.

None of this even seems to enter into the thinking of people like Harrabin, who may not like the idea of excess personal disposable income at all. They want to restrict the choices of all to some regulated amount, decided by themselves presumably. I recall again my father's account of a business trip to Moscow in the 1970's. Locals removed the windscreen wipers from their cars after they parked them so that they wouldn't be stolen while the car was unattended. This was because the infinite wisdom of the government had decreed that each car manufactured would have only a corresponding number of windscreen wipers manufactured. So when a replacement was needed, stealing one was the only option for most people.

BBC-Harrabin don't think any differently than the Soviet Commissariat.

Sep 18, 2019 at 2:37 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Almost all BBC metropolitan output is PR .. not news
So it is impossible to log all the bias

But there are some shortcuts to logging it
- A Google search for the last 24 hours Climate bis
.. and hitting the NEWS button on that page gives a slightly different list

New stories will probably be tweeted by BBC accounts
- from @BBCScienceNews
- from @BBCEarth
- from @BBC_Future lots of BBC activism
@Costingtheearth ..too much to read..they retweet too much activist stuff
There are many more accounts like the tiny tiny BBC enviro team (that list is not comprehensive ..there are more ppl)

Similarly GuardianEco live Twitter list
is the easiest way of grabbing the Guardian Green headlines ?

Oct 18, 2019 at 2:36 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Why would I want to do that (except to moan perhaps)?

Oct 18, 2019 at 2:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterAK

Impartial Harra tweets

#XR aggro: Will the vicars and retired GPs lose allegiance?
Or will they put today's outburst in perspective
as a rare eruption of violence
in what until now has been an unprecedented mass protest
characterised by planetary anxiety expressed through overwhelming niceness?

Then Replying to @LeoHickman
It was clear from their own polling
that their own members did not support action against the tube.
But remember it’s a coalition of affiliates not a corporate.

Oct 18, 2019 at 2:52 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

The BBC has a weekly Saturday radio show from the US Boston
today's podcast is already up
It's titled : Consciously green
The entire 27 mins is Green-tele-evangelism
.. Greta, the plastic free family etc.
melting Alpine glaciers,
China " emissions-free electric buses" ...(word trickery cos there are much more emissions from manufacturing and their daily power will be from coal/hydro)

Oct 19, 2019 at 7:50 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen