Thursday, April 24, 2014

Maurice Newman Rejects Climate Change, Because God.

EMMA ALBERICI, PRESENTER: One of Tony Abbott's first acts in Government was to appoint Maurice Newman as the head of his Business Advisory Council. Mr Newman is the former Chairman of both the Stock Exchange and the ABC. He's our guest this evening and he joined me earlier in the studio for this exclusive interview. 

(transcript - Lateline 22/04/2014)

One thing Emma Alberici didn't mention when introducing Maurice Newman on Lateline two nights ago was that he is an avowed climate change skeptic. Actually, "skeptic" might be a little generous; Newman flatly rejects that man-made climate change is happening, or that CO2 is causing global warming.

Not that it's much of a secret... and it wasn't long before Alberici and Newman were discussing his views in detail.

EMMA ALBERICI: It's no secret that you don't agree that man-made CO2 is causing global warming. Given there is now consensus among 97 per cent or so of climate scientists across the world that the view - around the view that human activity is responsible for climate change, what would it take to convince you?

MAURICE NEWMAN: We know first of all that the survey which came out with the 97 per cent number was flawed in the first place. So we don't pay any attention to that. What we do look at...

EMMA ALBERICI: There have been roughly three that have come up with that.

MAURICE NEWMAN: They all come up with flawed methodologies. So we don't pay any attention to that.

There are many people who are, perhaps justifiably, concerned about Newman's position on the Business Advisory Council, given his responsibility for making business and economic decisions and recommendations, and how his views on climate change (and their economic ramifications) could impact on these.

But what is potentially even more worrisome is the reason for his climate change stance.

Why does Newman reject the science?

MAURICE NEWMAN: I just look at the evidence. There is no evidence. If people can show there is a correlation between increasing CO2 and global temperature, well then of course that's something which we would pay attention to. But when you look at the last 17.5 years where we've had a multitude of climate models, and this was the basis on which this whole so-called science rests, it's on models, computer models. And those models have been shown to be 98 per cent inaccurate.

EMMA ALBERICI: By?

MAURICE NEWMAN: By Roy Spencer, who's carried out a thorough review of all of the models and the empirical data which against both land-based and satellite-based measuring. And they were found to be wrong.

Newman rejects the findings of thousands of scientists from hundreds of organisations scattered across 195 countries, because of the analysis of one man: Roy Spencer.

Who is Roy Spencer? Well, he used to be a senior climate scientist with NASA, although all of his former colleagues there disagree with his stance.

But Spencer has other links... and these underpin not only his rejection of man-made climate change, but Newman's as well.

You see, besides being a former NASA scientist, Roy Spencer is a signatory to something called "An Evangelical Declaration On Global Warming". This is a declaration made by the Cornwall Alliance, an organisation committed to bringing a proper and balanced biblical view of stewardship to the critical issues of environment and development".

And what exactly does the "Evangelical Declaration On Global Warming" have to say?

First, that the Earth is a product of Intelligent Design, and is "robust, resilient, self-regulating and self-correcting".

Second, that fossil and nuclear fuels are indispensable.

Third, that reducing CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions will harm economies.

And fourth, that policies aimed at renewable energy and emission reduction will harm the poor.

There's a lot more. A LOT more. But that's the abridged version. The Cornwall Alliance are essentially Christians who think oil and the Bible (not in that order) are the answer to everything.

Roy Spencer, former NASA climate scientist, is a signatory to their Declaration.

And Maurice Newman, chairman of Australia's Business Advisory Council, believes in Roy Spencer ahead of thousands of other scientists around the world.

Long story short: why does Maurice Newman reject climate change science?

Because God.