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Piers Akerman

Feb 18, 2010

Poor Piers Perplexed by Paraphrase.

Piers has a stinging response to the Independent's cl

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Piers has a stinging response to the Independent’s claim, highlighted here by us and here by Mediawatch, that he was the original source of a quote attributed to the first chair of the IPCC Sir John Houghton.

How that remark came to be slightly paraphrased in the quotation sent to me we shall probably never know. It’s possible that someone, somewhere in cyberspace tidied up Houghton’s original remark before including it in the material which was sent to me. That sort of thing occurs in the blogosphere.

So the quote is wrong then? It didn’t come from his 1994 book?

… published in The Sunday Telegraph (UK) on September 10, 1995, in which Houghton told writer Frances Welch: “If we want a good environmental policy in the future we’ll have to have a disaster.”

So that’d be a no to that too then? And when did you find the reference to the 1995 quote?


Did if take much research to find that article, considering it had a completely different quote to the one you were looking for?

I was forwarded an article

Oh, so someone found it for you. So that means that it wasn’t amongst the information from “numerous scientists who have provided me with information which undermines the IPCC’s reports over the past decade” then?

So you can’t find the original quote, you don’t know who paraphrased the quote, and you only found what you are now claiming to be the original quote when someone sent it to you yesterday? Is that right? OK, glad we’ve got that cleared up.

Let’s take a look at the ‘real’ quote then, the one that’s not from Sir John’s 1994 book.

“If we want a good environmental policy in the future we’ll have to have a disaster.”

Is that all he said, or was there more to the quote which might add some context? There was more? Well let’s look at the whole thing then, shall we?

“If we want a good environmental policy in the future, we’ll have to have a disaster. It’s like safety on public transport. The only way humans will act is if there’s been an accident.”

Hmm, that doesn’t sound like a blueprint for climate change alarmism to me, it sounds more like a reflection on the inertia of humankind, but to each his own.

I’m glad that this has all been cleared up, it’s nice to know that the root of the problem was nothing more than some sloppy paperwork.

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