Regarding ‘Economics vs The Renewables Bigger Picture‘:
Negotiations on climate change mitigation measures were a highlight at this year’s G8 summit in Italy  . The president of the Commission of the European Communities (alias the European Commission, EC) José Manuel Barroso is even quoted as saying he would “stress the importance of the science and remaining within a two degrees temperature rise”  at the summit.
Today I read Mr Parr’s letter to the editor of EurActiv , and last week I really wondered if I should laugh or cry over a blog entry titled “How climate change will change your diet” by Gräs , who reportedly works for DG Enterprise and Industry at the EC (a search in the EU’s ‘Who is who?’ directory  did not return any match for the author’s name).
In that relation and in the light of the forthcoming 15th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, I would like to share my personal observations and experience of “the importance of the science” for the EC and the Community institutions’ hypocritical fight against climate change.
To that end, I would like to begin by making clear that I am neither a climatologist nor a meteorologist. However, I hold a Master of Science degree in Molecular Biology, supplemented by three years’ experience working at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and another Master of Science degree in Environmental Sciences and Policy, so I do know what real science must look like.
Further to that, as a long-term senior expert at the Bulgarian Ministry of Environment and Water and a policymaker at the national and international levels, I am also fully aware of the importance of employing the best-available science in the preparation and implementation of any policy for the latter to be successful.
Last but not least, I have considerable practice as a journalist and editor, which made me familiar with the requirements of high-standard professional journalism. Therefore, in my letter I will focus on the quality of science on which the EC bases its policies and on the quality of journalism that the Commission uses in its communication with the public.
Having made the above clear, I would like to point out that, as far as the science of climate change is concerned, the EC’s policies aimed at combating climate change have very little, not to say nothing, to do with real science since they all draw heavily on the reports published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)   .
Many leading scientists, including lead authors and contributors to the reports, have on numerous occasions exposed the IPCC as an organisation lacking integrity, and its reports – as tendentiously ignoring scientific evidence, misinforming and manipulative; for example, in 1996 Seitz accused the IPCC of a “disturbing corruption of the peer-review process” , in 2007 Reiter, a contributor to one of the IPCC’s reports, said in an interview “I was horrified to read the second and the third assessment reports because there was so much misinformation…” , and in 2007 Singer and Avery wrote that “the  IPCC report itself documented the reality that the human-made warming claim was false” .
Naturally, the IPCC rejects these accusations – in response to Seitz’s critique, Santer (the lead author of the chapter criticised by Seitz) stated that the accusations were wrong and that “all IPCC procedural rules were followed in producing the final […] version” . Nevertheless, the respected science journal Nature is cited having published an article whose findings support Seitz’s accusations  .
To counteract the repeated mantra of “scientific consensus” on man-made global warming, I would like to note that with more than 700 prominent international scientists dissenting over the IPCC’s man-made global warming claims as of now and their number constantly growing every year   , there is hardly any “scientific consensus” that human activities have any contribution whatsoever to the process as (mis)represented by the EC , on which (mis)representation all Community policies for combating and adapting to climate change are based   .
In fact, only a few years ago many scientists suggested an alternative theory – that it is global cooling we must prepare for and which might happen in the next couple of decades  .
Moreover, even lead authors and contributors to the IPCC’s reports disagree with their conclusions, and especially with the claims of “the consensus of thousands of scientists” that “humans are causing a catastrophic change to the climate system”  . Some of these scientists disagree to such an extent with the content of the reports that they have even resigned from the IPCC.
Quite controversially, the IPCC keeps the names of these scientists on the author list even after they have resigned; in fact, Reiter, who did not agree with the final draft of a report he had contributed to, even “had to threaten legal action against [the IPCC]” in order to have his name removed from the author list .
Now, I am among the first to admit that safety precautions (Better safe than sorry!) do make sense when it comes to environment protection, since even slight changes in the living environment can have significant impacts on the health and well-being of organisms.
However, in real science, both of the above theories would have equal right to existence until one of them was disproved. Hence, a real precautionary approach would employ both probabilities and a well-thought, comprehensive climate change mitigation strategy should equally consider the two alternative scenarios. This, however, is not the case with the EC’s policies, which are based only on the global warming alternative   .
Based on my personal experience with the European Commission, I claim not only that the EC is ignoring the voices of scientists, who caution against spreading the ungrounded claim of man-made global warming, but that the Commission has made man-made climate change its new cult.
To support that claim, I will refer to an interview for a position with DG Environment that I attended a couple of years ago, at which I was asked the question ‘Do you believe in climate change?’ (emphasis added). Now, as a person of a scientific background, I do not just believe in phenomena, I seek to understand their mechanism and search for evidence that would support a scientific hypothesis on their functioning. Therefore I asked for the question to be repeated in the hope that it would be reworded to sound less like a question from a church choir entrance exam.
However, since the question was repeated word-for-word for a second time, ‘Do you believe in climate change?’, I replied exactly the following: “The question is not formulated correctly. I do not need to believe in climate change as such, since I know that it is a natural phenomenon which has occurred throughout the entire history of Earth and will continue occurring. If you ask me what I think about the anthropogenic contribution to the process – there is no common opinion in the scientific world: there are arguments both pro and contra.” And by the look I got from the person who had asked the question, I knew there and then I had no chances of getting the post.
As far as awareness-raising and communication with the public is concerned, the EC’s approach to the subject of climate change is merely brainwashing – in its relations with the public, the Commission does not present objective and impartial information, but literally preaches fear of man-made global warming .
I even shared this observation with the Commission in 2007  in a reaction to several articles published in the Research*EU magazine. The critique was mentioned in Issue No. 54 of the magazine ; nevertheless, a look at the EC’s website on climate change  and its press releases on the G8 summit in Italy  reveals that as of today no steps have been taken to improve the Commission’s communication performance and bring it in compliance at least with journalism standards.
Having highlighted the lack of real science behind the policies developed and promoted by the European Commission and its brainwashing ‘awareness-raising’ approach, now I would like to draw attention to the hypocrisy of the Community institutions in the issue of climate change.
The gravest example of hypocrisy is the shuttling of the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) between the Parliament’s two official seats in Brussels and Strasbourg. These trips have been reported to result in the release of about 20,000 tonnes of CO2 per year  (see also ).
Despite the Community’s legal commitment to cuts its greenhouse gas emissions and the MEPs’ requests for more stringent long-term climate goals , and contrary to a petition which gathered one million signatures within a few months in 2006 only   and a 2008 written declaration signed by 286 (or 38,9% of all) MEPs  to put an end to the European Parliament’s commuting between Brussels and Strasbourg, the Parliament has done nothing to hear the voice of the taxpayers and to discontinue its environment-deteriorating shuttling practice  (see also ).
However, the European Parliament is not alone in its hypocritical fight against climate change: for example, Meglena Kuneva – the European Commissioner for Consumer Affairs from Bulgaria – is reported to have said that she had been travelling every week to Bulgaria this year .
I would like to finish my letter by asking the question, are only brainwashed applicants employed to serve the Community institutions, or are the officials of these institutions actually hypocrites who are brainwashing Europeans?
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