Wed, 2014-10-01 04:50Brendan Montague
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Did David Cameron Forget Climate Change Section in His Leader's Speech?

David Cameron warned the Conservative party conference in his barnstorming speech that “the dangers of climate change are stark and very real” and “if we don’t act now, and act quickly, we could face disaster.”

This was, however, during his speech before delegates in Manchester in 2009, as the party readied itself for the 2010 general election when the arch-moderniser was promising voters they could “vote blue, go green.”

Wed, 2014-10-01 00:05Brendan Montague
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Lawson Becomes Chancellor - Attacks Miners, Sells Coal, Oil and Gas

Lord Lawson created Britain's privatised energy industry. Some argue that he supports their interests by denying the need for robust climate change policies. But he didn't support everyone who worked for coal, oil and gas companies. Even back then.

The general election of June 1983 was a landslide for the Tories and landed Thatcher an increased mandate for her free market reign. “Margaret unexpectedly offered me the chancellorship,” Nigel Lawson recalled.

Lawson's first appearance at the dispatch box brought with it promises of further tax cuts and an attack on public services—and he also tried to sneak through the sale of £500 million in British Petroleum shares, hoping the British public wouldn't notice.

On 29 June 1983, he told the House of Commons about “an emergency package of spending cuts—which would bring savings of £1 billion.”

A month later Lawson admitted that he also intended to sell off some of the government's remaining shares in British Petroleum.

Tue, 2014-09-30 00:15Brendan Montague
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Lawson's Climate Denial Donor Boasts of Shale Gas Investment

Lord Lawson accepted a donation for his climate denial charity from a millionaire financier who successfully invested in shale gas fracking, DeSmog UK can reveal.

Edgar Miller Jnr, a Texan-born venture capitalist, has been named as an early donor, fundraiser, and founder of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) who claims he turned down the role of director when the charity was being established almost five years ago.

The revelations will be hugely embarrassing for Lawson. Miller intimates during an interview that his donation was dependent on the GWPF attacking climate science rather than policy, and he even suggests the former chancellor is “a little bit” scientifically illiterate.

Tue, 2014-09-30 00:12Brendan Montague
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How Lawson Lost Control of Britain's Fossil Fuels

Lord Lawson is today the main voice of climate denial in Britain. But 30 years ago he was personally responsible for the British state losing control over our reserves of fossil fuels.

“My career as a cabinet minister began with quite a bang,” Lord Lawson recalled in his autobiography. His first act was to sell of the oil-producing BNOC run by the state-owned British Gas. 

He installed Martin Jacomb, his trusted friend and merchant banker, as a non-executive of the government's Gas Corporation Board.

“These three eminent businessmen could not be pushed around by anyone. They also kept me better informed than my officials were usually able to do,” Lawson would explain. (Jacomb will reappear in our story thirty years later when he would be appointed a trustee of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF)).

The privatisation of Britain's oil industry did not have public support. “The usual lack of enthusiasm for abandoning State ownership was reinforced in the public mind by the feeling that North Sea oil was a unique national asset which should remain strictly under national political control,” Lawson observed drily.

Mon, 2014-09-29 05:22Brendan Montague
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Climate? What Climate?

Chancellor George Osborne says Conservatives are a party of the future, but will rely on 19th century fuels to power the economyand presents no plan to deal with climate change 

George Osborne sent a clear message to the markets and the party faithful that the environment and climate change were no longer part of the Conservative agenda.

The chancellor of the exchequer called on the British electorate to forget the lessons of the past and to rely on fossil fuels to fire the engine of the economy. He also made no reference to the future risk of climate change.

Osborne promised that the Conservative government would decide on a new airport runway in the South East, support high-speed rail, build further nuclear power stations, encourage fracking for shale gas, and support genetically modified crops.

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