THE tormentors of Al Gore, who last week won a legal victory against his film,
An Inconvenient Truth, are to step up their battle by sending British
secondary schools a documentary attacking the science of global warming.
Channel 4’s The Great Global Warming Swindle has become one of the most
notorious documentaries of the year, attracting complaints from dozens of
scientists and viewers.
This weekend, however, the campaigners behind the High Court case said they
planned to send copies to 3,400 secondary schools “to counter Gore’s
Gore is a joint winner of the Nobel peace prize for his efforts to educate the
world about climate change. An Inconvenient Truth has also won two Oscars.
The distribution of The Great Global Warming Swindle is being funded by
Viscount Monckton, who is part of a counter-campaign to undermine the
scientific consensus on climate change.
Monckton was one of the backers of Stewart Dimmock, the Kent lorry driver and
school governor who took the government to court for sending copies of
Gore’s film to schools.
The two are connected through the New party, a right-wing group whose
manifesto was written by Monckton and of which Dimmock is a member.
Last week Mr Justice Burton ruled that, although it was broadly correct, An
Inconvenient Truth contained at least nine scientific errors and said
ministers must send new guidance to teachers before it was screened. The
judge said, for example, that Gore was wrong to suggest polar bears were
already drowning due to ice melting when this was just a prediction.
“That ruling was a fantastic victory,” said Monckton, a former Downing Street
adviser to Baroness Thatcher. “What we want to do now is send schools
material reflecting an alternative point of view so that pupils can make
their own minds up.”
Dimmock was awarded only two-thirds of his costs and is understood to have a
bill of more than £60,000. Monckton confirmed that he was among his
“backers” but refused to confirm if he had financed the case.
Monckton has obtained funding from a right-wing Washington think tank, the
Science and Public Policy Institute (SPPI), to create a second film that
will also be sent to schools. Entitled Apocalypse No, it parodies Gore,
showing Monckton presenting a slide show in a vitriolic attack on climate
Bob Ferguson, president of the SPPI, said: “We have filmed Christopher
[Monckton] making a presentation to the Cambridge University Union . . . It
could be sent out quite soon. We want to inform the public and policy makers
that there are different views on climate change.”
Monckton has also won support from the maker of The Great Global Warming
Martin Durkin, managing director of WAG TV, said he would be delighted for his
film to go to schools. “I have become a proselytiser against the so-called
consensus on climate change . . . people can decide for themselves,” he
Environmentalists say many questions remain about Durkin’s film. Channel 4
said that two of the scientists who took part have complained that the
editing gave a misleading impression of critical data and their own
viewpoints. Ofcom, which regulates broadcast media, is examining other
complaints from scientists.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which shared the Nobel
prize with Gore, is preparing a Synthesis Report. Rajendra Pachauri,
chairman of the IPCC, said the report would show that the earth faced a
catastrophic temperature rise within the next century.
George Monbiot, an environmentalist and critic of Monckton, said: “He is
trying to take on the global scientific establishment on the strength of a
classics degree from Cambridge.”