Ian Dunlop in the Canberra Times, The Age, and The Sydney Morning Herald namecalls away, discusses a mythical creature called a “climate denialist” and shows how little research it takes to get an opinion page in the Fairfax mastheads. (Comments are “open” at these sites).
He thinks that PM Tony Abbott ought follow Margaret Thatcher on climate policy, without realizing that skeptics would say “Bravo — Yes Please” to that. Thatcher was a chemist, and no fool. In 2003 she made it clear, when few people did, that she was absolutely a skeptic.
Ian Dunlop 2015:
It is too much to expect the male-dominated, eminence-grise of the incumbency to rise to the occasion, but women might. There is a precedent. Margaret Thatcher, addressing the United Nations General Assembly in 1989: ”We should always remember that free markets are a means to an end. They would defeat their objective if, by their output, they did more damage to the quality of life through pollution than the wellbeing they achieved by the production of goods and services”. Just so. You may not agree with Margaret Thatcher on many things, but on climate change she was spot on, three decades ahead of her male compatriots in Australia. Time for our stateswomen to step forward.
In 2003, towards the end of her last book, Statecraft, in a passage headed “Hot Air and Global Warming”, she issued what amounts to an almost complete recantation of her earlier views.
She voiced precisely the fundamental doubts about the warming scare that have since become familiar to us. Pouring scorn on the “doomsters”, she questioned the main scientific assumptions used to drive the scare, from the conviction that the chief force shaping world climate is CO2, rather than natural factors such as solar activity, to exaggerated claims about rising sea levels. She mocked Al Gore and the futility of “costly and economically damaging” schemes to reduce CO2 emissions. She cited the 2.5C rise in temperatures during the Medieval Warm Period as having had almost entirely beneficial effects. She pointed out that the dangers of a world getting colder are far worse than those of a CO2-enriched world growing warmer. She recognised how distortions of the science had been used to mask an anti-capitalist, Left-wing political agenda which posed a serious threat to the progress and prosperity of mankind.
In other words, long before it became fashionable, Lady Thatcher was converted to the view of those who, on both scientific and political grounds, are profoundly sceptical of the climate change ideology. Alas, what she set in train earlier continues to exercise its baleful influence to this day. But the fact that she became one of the first and most prominent of “climate sceptics” has been almost entirely buried from view.
Ian Dunlop was the Chair of the Australian Coal Association?
Ian Dunlop was formerly an international oil, gas and coal industry executive, chair of the Australian Coal Association and CEO of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He is a Member of the Club of Rome.