Guest essay by Eric Worrall
The delicious irony of a non-US big oil connected media organisation presenting US and European oil companies as the bad guys in the climate debate.
“In 1988 the UN established the IPCC, where scientists all over the world agreed with James Hansen.”
Jerry Taylor (former CATO VP): “Climate denial is entirely dependent on the denial of the underlying science”.
Marc Morano: “If you look at the Satellite data, the world has actually been cooling since 1988.
Marc Morano: “I believe in a Television or Debate Scenario, you make the other person defend their stupid comments”
Jerry Taylor: “A lot of people who don’t know what to think about climate change are being told by people like me that its a relative non-event, that its the same kind of wolf crying that the environmental movement has done from time immemorial, first we were told there was a population bomb which was going to wipe out humanity, and that bomb never went off, then we were told we were going to run out of fossil fuels and agricultural commodities, we were all going to starve, and that never happened, and this is just the latest iteration of the usual story from environmentalists that if we continue to go down the path of laissez faire capitalist roads we were going to blow up the planet and destroy mankind.”. [Are you sure you are no longer on our side Jerry? :-)]
Myron Ebel: “Its clear that the Earth is greening, and that’s a bad thing?”
Myron Ebel: “Global warming as a political project was initiated in Sweden in the 1980s, they needed a reason to increase tax revenue. I think you’re aware, in Denmark, the welfare state, it needs money, and it needs more money as time goes on”.
Around 11 minutes there is a few minutes of Naomi Oreskes starts complaining about how everyone is out to get her, followed by complaints about a Shell Oil film saying that fossil fuels are essential, complaints that BP, Shell and Exxon provide funding for research into green energy. Oreskes pops back into the film at random intervals, so its pretty hard to avoid seeing her.
The film contains lots of conspiracy ideation, Exxon runs the world type stuff. Pins on boards with string. Tobacco conspiracy nonsense at 34 minutes. Ed Garvey, who worked for Exxon in the 1980s, at 38 minutes, discussing how Exxon management did not agree with his research.
Naomi Oreskes suggests that scientists who receive funding from oil companies are unreliable, but Ed Garvey used to work for Exxon, and now he is a climate alarmist. Perhaps you are only unreliable if you disagree with Naomi Oreskes?
The idea that someone could disagree with Hansen and Oreskes’ position on climate change, because they reached different conclusions based on the available evidence, is not considered.
Al Jazeera also forgot to mention that Naomi Oreskes once called James Hansen a denier, because Hansen thinks nuclear power will be an essential part of the future zero carbon energy mix. Oreskes apparently thought Hansen was denying the promise of renewable energy.
Watching the film you could easily form the impression Naomi Oreskes and James Hansen agree on everything, which they clearly don’t.
And of course there is the delicious irony that the film producer Al Jazeera owes their existence and much of their funding to the big oil Qatari royal family, though they claim they have editorial independence. Perhaps a bit like the BBC.
Al Jazeera is not immune to accusations of conflict of interest. Al Jazeera also funded Matt Damon’s anti US fracking film in 2012.
A person with a really suspicious mind might wonder if someone in Qatar wants the USA and Europe out of the oil and gas game, and is trying to stir up political opposition to oil and gas extraction in the USA and Europe. But obviously this would just be speculation.
If Al Jazeera are expecting their video to move the needle on the climate debate, I think they are in for a big disappointment.