Graham Readfearn's blog

Scientists Not Surprised Climate Denialist Lawyer Christopher Horner Has Financial Ties to Alpha Coal Company

christopher c horner

A lawyer who has used intimidating legal requests to try to gain access to the records and emails of climate scientists has a financial relationship with a major coal company, it has been revealed.

Christopher Horner, who works with two groups to pursue scientists and environmental regulators, is listed in the bankruptcy papers filed by lawyers on behalf of Alpha Natural Resources and its 150 subsidiary companies in the coal industry.

The Heartland Institute, a “free market think tank” and major promoter of fringe views that greenhouse gases are not a problem for the planet, is also named in the papers, as are other key groups.

Investigative journalist Lee Fang, of news website The Intercept founded by lawyer and journalist Glenn Greenwald, first reported the links in two stories.

Scientists who have been targeted by Horner said they are not surprised to hear a coal company has helped to finance the attacks against them.

This Veteran Climate Scientist Advised Three Australian Prime Ministers. What Would He Say To Tony Abbott?

Scientist Dr Graeme Pearman knows more than most about the responsibilities and the perils that come with communicating climate change to the highest authorities.

As one of Australia’s highest ranking government scientists, he was asked into the offices of three consecutive Australian Prime Ministers to brief them on climate change.

In the late 1980s, it was Labor Prime Minister Bob Hawke. Then in the 1990s, it was Hawke’s Labor successor Paul Keating. As the decade wore on, it was the conservative Liberal Prime Minister John Howard on the other side of the briefing table.

Australian Psychological Society "Disturbed" By Climate Denialist Group's "Misleading" Newspaper Advert

Australia’s peak body representing psychologists has attacked a climate science denial group for a prominent advert taken out in a major national newspaper.

The Australian Psychological Society (APS) says the advert from a little-known group “misuses psychology-based arguments” to “mislead the public” on the science of climate change.

In a stinging letter to The Australian newspaper, which ran the half-page advert, the APS said the authors had shown “cognitive biases” in ignoring a “huge body of scientific evidence” on climate change.

The advertisers identified themselves only as “The Climate Study Group” in the page five advert that appeared on 7 August under the title “Psychology and the New Climate Alarm”.

DeSmog has found the group members have links to mining, finance, agriculture and free market “think tank” the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA).

Climate Professor Peter Wadhams Says He Does Not Think Colleagues Were Murdered

Does UK climate scientist and sea ice researcher Professor Peter Wadhams think three of his peers were assassinated?

If you’ve read the story as it quickly spread across the conservative media in recent days, then your answer to this question would be a resounding “yes”.

But DeSmog asked Wadhams last night if he believed the deaths of scientists Seymour Laxon, Katherine Giles and Tim Boyd were anything other than tragic accidents.

Wadhams told us: “No, they were clearly accidents.”

Australia’s War on Wind Energy is Shortsighted and Ideological, says Global Industry Group

Australia’s Prime Minister Tony Abbott isn’t much of a fan of wind power.

In an interview with Alan Jones, the country’s most popular radio shock jock, Abbott said he thought wind farms were “visually awful” and they “make a lot of noise.”

You know, like coal mines?

But the Abbott Government’s opposition to wind farms goes much further than dissing them for their looks.

Australia's IPA Think Tank Adds Coal Lobbying To Its Climate Science Denial

The Institute of Pubic Affairs holds the unofficial and dubious title of being Australia’s leading climate science denial organisation.

The so-called “think tank”, based in Melbourne, promotes fringe views on climate science from non-experts while attacking renewable energy.

Now if you were a coal company, you’d be concerned how for many decades scientists have linked the burning of your product to climate change. 

You might be worried too that investment in renewable energy is going through the roof while the cost of power from aforementioned renewables is going in the opposite direction.

A short-sighted coal company might decide to start launching critiques of the science of climate change and start having a crack at renewables while at the same time selling its product as some sort of silver bullet that can solve global poverty with a single well-aimed shot.

This brings us back to the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) and its latest report, titled: “The life saving potential of coal: How Australian coal could help 82 million Indians access electricity”. It could have been written by the coal industry.

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