Don't Be Fooled: Fossil Fools Fund Latest Climate Skeptic Petition

Sun, 2011-04-17 15:41Emma Pullman
Emma Pullman's picture

Don't Be Fooled: Fossil Fools Fund Latest Climate Skeptic Petition

The Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) recently published a flashy headline that reads, 900+ Peer-Reviewed Papers Supporting Skepticism Of “Man-Made” Global Warming (AGW) Alarm’. The article links to a blog post on listing more than 900 papers which, according to the GWPF, refute “concern relating to a negative environmental or socio-economic effect of AGW, usually exaggerated as catastrophic.”

The “900+ papers” list is supposed to somehow prove that a score of scientists reject the scientific consensus on climate change. One might be persuaded by the big numbers. We’re not.

Oh, where to begin? First, a note of caution about the Global Warming Policy Foundation. It’s a UK group opposing climate change action. Sourcewatch’s digging reveals links to right-wing libertarian climate change deniers. According to the UK Charity Commission, GWPF’s mandate is to “advance the public understanding of global warming and of its possible consequences, and also of the measures taken or proposed to be taken in response to it”. Actually, they’re a heck of a lot more interested in sowing seeds of doubt than in disseminating knowledge. The GWPF’s director is the Heartland Institute’s* Benny Peiser, climate change denier extraordinaire. Other notable members include Canada’s Ross McKitrick of the Fraser Institute.   

Curiously, the GWPF was launched just as the Climategate emails were released. An op-ed by Chairman Nigel Lawson announced the GWPF, predicted the (hopeful) failure of the Copenhagen climate talks, and called for an inquiry into the content of the stolen emails.

Using a screen-scraping process to analyze the data on the “900+” list, the folks over at Carbon Brief dug up some pretty incriminating information. Turns out nine of the ten most cited authors on the list (representing 186 of the 938 papers) have links to ExonMobil-funded organizations. The tenth has co-authored several papers with Exxon-funded contributors. Anyone familiar with these kinds of lists (“More than 500 scientists dispute global warming” or “more Than 1000 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims”) knows that if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all.  Many familiar climate skeptic names appear over and over again.

Dr. Sherwood B Idso is the most cited author on the list, having authored or co-authored 67 of the papers. Idso is president of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, a think tank funded by ExxonMobil and the Sarah Scaife Foundation

The second most cited is Dr. Patrick J. Michaels, a well-known climate sceptic who admits that around 40% of his funding comes from the oil industry.

When you really crunch the numbers, all you really find is a small echochamber of the same individuals who pop up on every denier list and petition around. James W. Prall at the University of Toronto has put together a fantastic analysis of the names that appear on these lists, and shows how most of them share funding ties to the oil industry. 

Now a note on the most cited journals on this list. Articles from trade journal Energy and Environment are cited 137 times on the list. Energy and Environment is edited by Sonja Boehmer-Christiansen and Benny Peiser. Numerous known climate skeptics sit on the editorial staff including Sallie Baliunas, Patrick Michaels, Ross McKitrick, and Richard Lindzen.  The journal has become a go-to resource for policymakers and politicians who are skeptical of the scientific consensus of climate change. 

Michael Ashley of the University of New South Wales has described it as “the climate sceptic’s journal of choice”. The Thomson Reuters Web of Knowledge is considered a key resource for establishing the credentials and influence of key academic journals. It does not list Energy and Environment.  

A further 24 papers come from the journal Climate Research which is perhaps best known for publishing a 2003 paper by Sallie Baliunas and Willy Soon that received funding from the American Petroleum Institute. In response to the paper’s publication, the editor in chief, Hans Von Storch, and five of ten members of the editorial board, resigned in protest.

Let’s contrast this “900+ list” with the real facts. Expert Credibility in Climate Changewhich appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, examines over 2,400 climate scientists and authors who have signed public statements on climate change. Their research says that 97–98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field believe that global warming is happening, and that we must respond to it.

A note to deniers: if you keep publishing these lists, we’ll keep debunking them. Long lists might look convincing, but they’re no substitute for research that is free of fossil fuel industry bias and is taken seriously by the scientific community. 

*Updated: Peiser is listed as one of the global warming ‘experts’ by the Heartland Institute, but does not work there.

Image Credit: Prospect Magazine


Yes there are lies that no peer-reviewed papers exist supporting skepticism of AGW Alarm,

"You realize that there are something like two or three thousand studies all of which concur which have been peer reviewed, and not one of the studies dissenting has been peer reviewed?"

- John Kerry, U.S. Senator and Failed 2004 U.S. Presidential Candidate

"There was a massive study of every scientific article in a peer reviewed article written on global warming in the last ten years. They took a big sample of 10 percent, 928 articles. And you know the number of those that disagreed with the scientific consensus that we’re causing global warming and that is a serious problem out of the 928: Zero."

- Al Gore, Former U.S. Vice President and Failed 2000 U.S. Presidential Candidate

Why do you continually lie that I claim all the papers on the list refute AGW? Why are you such a dishonest individual? Are you still embarrassed after I gave you an education on Google Scholar?

I don't have a politically motivated view just the facts.

Anyone who can claim to respect Jones, Mann, Briffa, Schmidt, et. al. more than Lindzen clearly hasn't read any of the climategate emails.

Anyone who thinks that the IPCC is neutral clearly hasn't read the summary for policy makers.

And finally; anyone who thinks the science is overwhelmingly in support of catastrophic AGW hasn't read anything.

The climategate crew exposed themselves as gamers who's goal is to discredit anyone who doesn't toe the line of their opinion of the urgency of AGW. That isn't science.

The IPCC summary is a far different document than AR4 would support.

And the science; well, it's one thing to say the Earth has warmed, and CO2 has had an impact. It's a far different thing to claim that the people of the world are in peril, and you have models to prove it.

So far (say the last 10 years) the models are off by a factor of two standard deviations and a whole lot of alarmists have been caught making predictions that aren't coming true.

If your science is non-predictive, it isn't science.

BTW; sea level, going down, polar ice; increasing, global temps; decreasing. Milancokvitch; vindicated. CO2; 25-35% of total warming, with a 90% confidence interval. Fourier is gonna destroy current models.

All for now!

Bob Cootz... Thats the biggest laugh Ive had all week!

How about you point us to ONE email and lets discuss it. Shall we?

I dont think YOUVE read the emails in full, nor have you read the published research.


Sea level rise:

Arctic ice:

Global temp:

Milancokvitch? You mean Milankovitch? No, orbital patterns are actually conspiring to create a cooling trend. See: Miller et al 2010

Bob Cootz,

This is outdated and utterly boring, even I imagine to the hardcore types who actually attempt to construct arguments. If you really want to deny the laws of physics, then go ahead, but if you want to play the big anti-science game you need to figure out how to bend them to your own ideology without anyone noticing - and I wish you luck in your attempt!

I guess you could start by going to Watts and asking if there's any chance of a work-experience placement???

Cheers - John

So amusing, Emma is "studying" propaganda, but seems to be a fully fledged practitioner of the dubious art herself ! What a puerile and nasty little smear job it is too, is this really the best you can do ?

Ah, but the difference being that the so called "smear" presented by Emma is accurate. Poptechs list is bogus in every sense that you can imagine. It is completely and utterly meaningless.

Nothing presented by Emma is accurate and it has all been completely refuted,

Rebuttal to "Don't Be Fooled: Fossil Fools Fund Latest Climate Skeptic Petition"

Yeah, you keep saying that Andrew. Keep telling yourself that.

1. Please provide actual documents irrefutabl­y demonstrat­ing direct fossil fuel company funding for any scientist.

2. Then prove that the same scientist has received enough energy company donations to sustain all their research over the years.

3. Finally prove that the same scientist changed their scientific position regarding AGW due to a monetary donation and did not hold a skeptical position prior to the donation.

Bentley, very well put.

You only have to casually look around this site to know it's smear site, abusive to people who have a different view. A very nasty place to frequent. If this is what they consider to be good journalism then good luck to them.

But posters have a very low threshold for the dishonesty shown by the denier fools who frequent this site.

If you are honest you will be treated with respect, well as much respect as a denier deserves.

Id say youre a bit thin skinned. This thread is nothing compared to what deniers dish out over at WUWT or JoNova.

Rob, but they are very different sites. It almost appears organized the denier posts on here. I mean, someone alerts poptech to this post & a few emails later a few of them descend to scream they are right & nothing will change their "facts". Despite being banned from various blogs, shown where they are wrong by actual scientists & even a former nature editor, people like poptech insist they are superior, have the facts & stay message disciplined however wrong it is. Then if things are not going their way, take any opportunity to openly smear or incite flaming or harrasment by publishing personal details like in Ians case. Andrew Bolt does similar things on his blog where he or fans will post contact details of a scientist, where by the legions of flying monkeys will launch abusive attacks, often on the wrong person like what happened to Andy Pitman.... well, the artist, not the scientist.

WUWT & Nova are essentially right wing denier blogs on steroids. You expect you will get a hard time there or abused, edited, snipped, censored or deleted . Its like trying to tell Fox news fans or religious nutters another side, they wont have it. At least the deniers on this blog cant claim censorship, snips or deletions because there is none. Whereas I have been deleted, censored or snipped over at WUWT several times .

No one alerted me to this post, I just know how to use the Internet. I have been banned from various ALARMIST blogs but no skeptic ones because the alarmists are unable to debate me. So they run and cry to the admins to stop me from further embarrassing them.

I have not been shown to be wrong by anyone despite this repeated lie. Any legitimate criticisms have been corrected.

Poptech, you sure you dont have bipolar or something mate? I mean sheeesh, you don't find it unusual that you are not banned from a blog that supports your own views, wow never saw that one coming eh? What about Jref? It's neutral ground, but you were banned there after being allowed to post hundreds of comments & say what you wanted. You managed to keep dozens of people involved in circular arguments for months, just like all the other blogs you visit. E.g.

Here is where you are wrong Poptech.
No, that is a lie & is me....on my own website.

"I have not been shown to be wrong by anyone despite this repeated lie. Any legitimate criticisms have been corrected."

Your method of argument and citation would have been invaluable to me at uni had I thought of it. It would have got me fails, but hey, in my mind, I could have been right! Works well on blogs though I must admit.

Just message discipline. I'm right, your wrong, you lie & everything you say has been refuted, let me get the last word in, because that somehow proves I am right.

JREF is NOT a neutral site as they censor, move or lock any topic that does not agree with the climate alarmists who post there. I posted multiple peer-reviewed journal articles that were censored for no other reason then they were posted by myself and do not support AGW Alarm. Yes I am well aware that once they were unable to refute my arguments they had the moderator take action to do what they could not do, censor me. It is a nice fantasy to believe otherwise.

My arguments and citations got myself A's. So maybe it is just you who are poor at making valid arguments or using relevant citations to support them?

Your opinion on this is irrelevant and meaningless. All legitimate criticisms have been corrected and all others refuted ad nauseum.

"The GWPF's director is... Benny Peiser,..."

You'd perhaps like to look at the International Policy Network and its apparent academic base at University of Buckingham where IPN's Julian Morris resides along with Peiser.


GMU in Blighty?

Also interesting is Froesight Communications run by Mark Adams, who had links to the New Party. The New Party was headed up by Robert Durward, who set up the Scientific Alliance for which Peiser was an advisor. Foresight Communications' advisory board members are a predictable lot and include Martin Livermore, also of International Policy Network and advisor to the Scientific Alliance. As Desmog's entry on Peiser says...

"In December 2004, the Scientific Alliance teamed up with ExxonMobil funded George C. Marshall Institute to produce a paper titled "Climate Issues and Questions.""


As for the GWPF's independent "educational" charity status, why does this UK conservative blog have it listed as a centre right organisation in the blog roll to the right of the page?:

Poptech is on record claiming that articles on his list are "peer reviewed" because they "can be" peer reviewed:


Poptech: "[My list] is overwhelmi­ng evidence of a peer-revie­wed papers supporting skeptic arguments against AGW or AGW Alarm"

Me: "Your joke of a list counts multiple 'viewpoint­­' - aka OpEd - articles authored by non-natura­­l scientist Sonja Boehmer-Ch­­­ristians­e­n. How do you know that said articles have been peer reviewed?"

Poptech: "Because these can be and you have not demonstrat­ed otherwise."

Poptech gets a spanking!



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