BeeGate: How Green Campaigners Subverted Science

Almost ten years ago, when there were indications of stresses on honeybee populations (known as colony collapse disorder ‚Äì CCD), different activists were jockeying for the right to claim this crisis for their campaigns. Climate activists wanted to show bees were suffering because of warmer weather; biodiversity campaigners saw land-use issues as the source for the crisis; anti-GMO stalwarts wanted us to know there was something unknown in the pollen; anti-EMF  fear-mongers wanted to highlight the confusion bees suffered due to our love of mobile technology. Nobody mentioned the main causes (cold winters and Varroa mite) … seriously, who would donate to that? –David Zaruk, The Risk-Monger, 18 February 2017

Revelations by the Mail on Sunday about how world leaders were misled over global warming by the main source of climate data have triggered a probe by the US Congress. Republican Lamar Smith, who chairs the influential House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space and Technology, announced the inquiry last week in a letter to Benjamin Friedman, acting chief of the organisation at the heart of the MoS disclosures, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In his letter to NOAA, Congressman Smith expresses frustration that previous demands for documents about the Pausebuster were not met, although his committee took the unusual step of issuing a legal subpoena. NOAA’s decision to withhold the documents was, he wrote, ‘without any justification in law’. –David Rose, Mail on Sunday, 19 February 2017

[The new head of the EPA], Scott Pruitt says he expects to quickly withdraw both the Clean Power Plan (President Obama’s premier climate regulation) and the 2015 Waters of the United States rule (which asserts EPA power over every creek, pond or prairie pothole with a “significant nexus” to a “navigable waterway”). Will the EPA regulate carbon dioxide? Mr. Pruitt says he won’t prejudge the question. “There will be a rule-making process to withdraw those rules, and that will kick off a process,” he says. “And part of that process is a very careful review of a fundamental question: Does EPA even possess the tools, under the Clean Air Act, to address this? It’s a fair question to ask if we do, or whether there in fact needs to be a congressional response to the climate issue.”  –Kimberley A. Strassel, The Wall Street Journal, 17 February 2017

Companies vying to build nuclear power stations in the UK have been told they must offer a price for their electricity sharply lower than that approved for the Hinkley Point plant last year, raising further questions about the viability of Britain’s plans for a new generation of reactors. However, the prospect of less lucrative contracts will add to the financing difficulties facing reactor developers and intensify their demands for government help to meet multibillion-pound construction costs. –Andrew Ward, Financial Times, 17 February 2017

A financially viable nuclear power station looks increasingly like a mirage. Even the eye-watering guarantee from the UK taxpayer for Hinkley Point C is not enough to cover the risk that building it will bankrupt EDF. It’s telling that after 60 years of mostly successful operation, commercial viability still eludes the nuclear power industry. The cheapest and quickest fix is to build gas-fired power stations, to tap into worldwide abundance and increasingly diverse supply, even before domestic fracking gets going in the UK.  Abandoning nuclear means facing reality on the likely path of future carbon dioxide emissions. It means repealing the Climate Change Act with its arbitrary targets for dramatic cuts, passed near-unanimously by parliament in 2007 in an orgy of self-indulgence. Legislate in haste, repent at leisure. –Neil Collins, Financial Times, 17 February 2017

Yesterday I was among those who spoke at a splendid lunch in Somerset to celebrate the life of my good friend Sir Antony Jay, best-known as one of the co-authors of Yes Minister. I first met him more than 50 years ago as one of the so-called “Young Turks” then leading the way in changing the formerly staid values of the BBC out of recognition; not least through the satire show TW3, of which I was, with David Frost, the chief political scriptwriter. But, unlike the others, Jay never fell for what was to become the BBC’s all‚Äëpervasive tendency to self-congratulatory groupthink. Almost his last publication was a foreword to a long report I published in 2012 itemising how the BBC has so shamelessly betrayed its statutory obligation to impartiality in its coverage of global warming. He described how appalled he had become by much of what has become of the institution where he began his working life. –Christopher Booker, The Sunday Telegraph, 19 February 2017  

Comments (2)

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    Sonnyhill

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    About bees. I’m a grain farmer. I have yet to meet any kind of bee, honey or bumble, in my corn field. Bees have no use for wheat, soybean or corn pollen. These crops self pollinate. The Liberals have taken away the best seed treatment we know of, neonicotinoids, because the beekeepers say that colony collapse coincided with this chemical’s introduction.Liberals hate pesticides. Liberals blame the high cost of safe (organic in their opinion) food on “corporate” farmers. Liberals don’t like farmers and most farmers hate Liberals. Organic farmers are quite happy to take money from paranoid suckers.I say the beekeepers are taking too much out of the equation. Leave more honey in the hive for the hard-working bees.

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      David Lewis

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      I can’t speak for all organic farmers, but my brother-in-law raises organic beef. He gets a little extra because it is organic, but not much. It is the middle men who make the big money from paranoid suckers.

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