Sunday, 31 December 2017


This piece gives an excellent debating argument for the case against climate alarmism. The motion being opposed was "This house would rather cool the planet than warm the economy”. It is a false choice ,since if you do not accept the premise that CO2 will cause dangerous warming then it is quite possible to both "warm the economy" and not warm the planet. There is no need to cool the planet as it has not warmed much anyway (less than one degree C). 

Saturday, 30 December 2017


Here is a link to the article with details. Within the article there is a link to the "Divest Parliament" website containing a complete list of all 100 signatures, only 3 are Conservatives. How dare they complain about their pension fund when they have a guaranteed final salary scheme. Those charged with investing the fund must be free to get the best return that they can without interference. If they were to succeed then any fall off in performance should be passed on to them in lower pensions.

Friday, 29 December 2017


Below is a Letter to Dr Singer, the chairman of SEPP, Science and Environmental Policy Project from students in Denmark asking important questions:

We are starting a project next week and the topic is "change". We have chosen the subtopic "global warming"

Do you have the time to answer a few questions in writing?

1.  What is behind global warming?

2.  What can we do to prevent global warming?

3.  If we don't do anything about it, how does it affect us and our descendants?

4.  What will happen in the future, and what are the alternatives for us, if the Earth becomes unliveable?

5.  How can we save Earth if it isn't too late?


Dear Students:

Dr. Singer was not available to answer your questions. I have worked with him for the past seven years, and he approved this response to you.

You ask some very good questions, which require answers with some detail. Science advances by asking good questions, providing answers that may or may not be correct (guesses), then testing the guesses against all hard evidence, that may or may not support it. If the strongest evidence does not support the guess (the hypothesis), then the guess must be discarded or changed.

The climate has been warming and cooling for hundreds of millions of years. For over two million years, the globe has usually been cold, with long ice ages interrupted by short warm periods of 10 to 15 thousand years. We live in one such warm period of about 10,000 years. The longer periods of cooling (and shorter periods of warming) have been explained as resulting from a changing of the orbit and tilt of the globe in relation to the sun, known as the Milankovitch cycles.

Within the generally-warm past 10,000 years, there has been shorter periods of modest warming and cooling. During a warming period, agriculture began and with it, civilization. The most recent cooling period is known as the Little Ice Age. It occurred between about 1300 to 1850 and was very hard for those living in Northern Europe and China, where we have written records. In Europe, many died from starvation and associated diseases because crops did not ripen. The Nordic settlements in Greenland were wiped out. Great storms occurred in the North Sea, killing thousands of people living in the low countries. It is thought this cooling period was caused by a weaker intensity of the sun, which resulted in increasing cloudiness and corresponding cooling.

Understanding what is behind the current warming of the last century or so, requires a complete understanding of what created periods of warming and cooling over the past 10,000 years, which we do not have. The earth’s climate is extremely complex. It can be described as the result of two fluids in motion interacting with the land. The fluids move in response to the heat generated daily by the sun.

One of the fluids is the ocean, which transports heat on the surface from the tropics to the poles, where it escapes into the atmosphere and to space. A famous surface ocean flow is the Gulf Stream, which keeps Northern Europe much warmer than the corresponding latitudes of Canada. The other fluid is the atmosphere, which transports heat from the surface to the upper troposphere by convection, from which heat can escape to space by radiation.  We simply do not understand the movements of fluids sufficiently well to explain exactly how these systems work.

Adding to the complexity is the rotation of the earth, which changes the intensity of solar energy hitting any specific location on the globe. That varies both daily and seasonally, which adds to the ever-changing motions of the atmosphere and the oceans. It may take hundreds of years before these complex motions are fully understood.

In answer to your question: What is behind global warming? We simply do not know in detail, but can guess, then look at the evidence.

Over 100 years ago, scientists wondered why the surface of the earth does not cool as rapidly at night, as many thought it should. An explanation, since then well tested, is that some gases in the atmosphere delay the transport of heat from the surface to space, keeping the earth warmer at night. These gases are called greenhouse gases, the most important of which is water vapor. Deserts, with low atmospheric water vapor, cool more rapidly at night than humid areas at comparable latitude.

A lesser greenhouse gas is carbon dioxide which humans emit by burning fossil fuels. But research by different laboratories have shown that adding carbon dioxide to today’s atmosphere will cause only a small warming, nothing to fear.

Prior to the time when satellite measurements began (1979), the surface thermometers that indicated warming were largely on land, mostly located in the US, Western Europe, and other Westernized areas. The coverage was not global. Surface temperatures may indicate what is occurring in the atmosphere, but are influenced by many other human activities such as building cities, land clearing, and farming. For over 38 years, we have had the benefit of accurate temperature measurements from satellites that cover nearly all the earth, including oceans.

Meanwhile, computer models, known as General Circulation Models, have been used with relatively little success. Built into them is the assumption that the slight warming caused by CO2 will be amplified into a much greater warming due to water vapor. The principles of the scientific method demand that real data from observations be used, and for a computer model to be valid, it must reproduce the observed data. Any warming caused by increased greenhouse gases will be stronger in the atmosphere than on the surface.

Satellite measurements of temperature trends in the atmosphere have been studied intensely, including even tiny corrections for drifting orbits. Furthermore, the temperature trends are double-checked by using four different sets of atmospheric temperature measurements, taken with different instruments, carried by weather balloons; and all closely agree. Now stretching over 38 years, these show a modest warming trend.

From this evidence, we can conclude that: unless compelling evidence indicates otherwise, the warming influence of greenhouse gases, especially carbon dioxide, has been greatly overestimated; efforts to reduce greenhouse gases will not prevent global warming; carbon dioxide-caused warming will be modest; and the Earth will not become unliveable from carbon dioxide warming. Life began on this planet when the atmosphere was far richer in carbon dioxide, and far poorer in oxygen, than it is today.

Starting in 1972, Landsat satellites have been taking images of the earth. They show that the earth is greening with increasing carbon dioxide, becoming richer for life. Thousands of experiments show food crops grow better in atmospheres richer in carbon dioxide than the atmosphere today. Indoor plant nurseries routinely increase the carbon dioxide concentration of their air to three to four times that of today’s atmosphere.

Through the wonder of photosynthesis, using energy from the sun, green plants convert carbon dioxide and water into oxygen and carbohydrates (food). All plants and complex animals depend on this food. We should praise carbon dioxide, not fear it.

To directly answer your questions:

1.                  What is behind global warming?   We don’t know exactly, but based on evidence, greenhouse gases are not the main cause.

2.                  What can we do to prevent global warming?   Nothing. The main cause is natural variation, which we cannot prevent.

3.                  If we don't do anything about it, how does it affect us and our descendants?   You and your descendants will live in a world richer in carbon dioxide, which is a benefit to plants, the environment, and humanity.

4.                  What will happen in the future, and what are the alternatives for us, if the Earth becomes unliveable?   Life began on earth with the atmosphere many times richer in carbon dioxide than today. The earth will not become unliveable from carbon dioxide-caused warming.

5.                  How can we save Earth if it isn't too late?   The earth does not need saving, but it needs good stewards. You can help by not polluting with trash, not wasting energy, and living healthy lives.

Best wishes,

Kenneth Haapala, President

Science and Environmental Policy Project

December 22, 2017

Thursday, 28 December 2017


This piece in the Daily Mail explains how climate activists were called to account for making false claims about the cost of electricity from wind farms falling by 50% over two years. Yet again false claims have been proven to be made by climate activists - when will they learn?

Wednesday, 27 December 2017


This article takes an in-depth look at the many obstacles preventing current and future projects succeeding. It sounds crazy that with all the clamour for low-carbon energy the future for nuclear is so poor. The fact is that it is only big subsidies that keep wind and solar going. The only profitable sector is the fossil fuels.

Tuesday, 26 December 2017


This piece explains that there are proposals to bring toad-charging in for lorries first, but it is thought that the scheme would be likely to eventually include all vehicles. Of course modern technology will dispense with the requirement for collecting payments directly as number plate recognition technology will allow a bill to be sent retrospectively.  Time for mass protests if we are to stop this attempt to curb our freedom to travel economically.

Monday, 25 December 2017


A top German economist has just given a talk showing that replacing fossil fuel driven energy with wind and solar is impossible. This article explains his thinking which should be essential reading for all Western leaders. When will our rulers wake up to reality? I doubt if the present lot will, but those who want to replace them would do well to read this lecture and tell voters that they are being led over a cliff if they keep on the current path. perhaps next year!

Sunday, 24 December 2017


This piece gives the details of how to enter the competition and win a prize for guessing the temperature of the global surface in 2018. So click the link and have a go - you are probably just as good as the most expensive climate computers.

Saturday, 23 December 2017


This piece  looks at the problems faced by the fracking industry in Pennsylvania and how the current USA government is trying to remove some of the major obstacles. If they are successful then the industry will have a very bright future in the USA.  As for the UK we are way behind, as usual and have a lot of catching up to do.

Friday, 22 December 2017


This piece explains the reason why the impact of changes in solar activity on Earth’s climate was up to seven times greater than climate models suggested according to new research published today in Nature Communications.
Researchers have claimed a breakthrough in understanding how cosmic rays from supernovas react with the sun to form clouds, which impact the climate on Earth.The findings have been described as the “missing link” to help resolve a decades long controversy that has big implications for climate science.

Thursday, 21 December 2017


This article explains the details. Once again we see deliberate attempts to manipulate the data. When will they learn that this kind of behaviour is counterproductive. 

Wednesday, 20 December 2017


Here is the link to the course. Of course it's in the USA, but at least there is one. Hopefully it will encourage others to follow suite. Please let me know if you know of any others. The professor running it has just joined the GWPF (Global Warming Policy Foundation.)

Tuesday, 19 December 2017


This report explains the reasons why Dr Norman Page believes that cooling is about to commence.   Dr. Page is among a growing number of scientists who share the general view that natural solar and oceanic cycles are mostly driving the climate, just as they always have in the past.

Monday, 18 December 2017


This article explains what is going on. Also we are getting more cosmic rays hitting the Earth as the suns protective magnetic shield gets weaker. This is only expected to be a temporary phenomenon until the sun begins a new 11 year cycle.

Sunday, 17 December 2017


This piece explains how in 2009 the EPA issued the Endangerment Finding, which created a statutory obligation to regulate carbon emissions. The EPA argued that even if it was an assessment, it was not “highly influential.” Since the Endangerment Finding was being issued on a “stand-alone” basis with no specific regulations attached, the investigation ended without resolution.

Saturday, 16 December 2017


This article gives the details of this breakthrough that would revolutionise our energy supply. But it is more than likely just another false dawn.

Friday, 15 December 2017


This article explains that those who try to claim that wild fires are increasing due to global warming are quite wrong.

A 2016 study in published by the UK Royal Society reported, “There is less fire in the global landscape today than centuries ago” and the “global area burned” has seen a “slight decline over past decades.”  The study, by Stefan Doerr and Cristina Santin of Swansea University in Wales, noted “many consider wildfire as an accelerating problem, with widely held perceptions both in the media and scientific papers of increasing fire occurrence, severity and resulting losses. However, important exceptions aside, the quantitative evidence available does not support these perceived overall trends.”

Thursday, 14 December 2017


Here is an article that just shows how the legal system can be conned by spurious scientific "evidence" into backing up the climate change myth. Listing the Bearded Seal as Threatened: A Disturbing Victory for Untestable Hypotheses and Flawed Models.  This passage sums up the decision "It seems highly unlikely bearded seals will be endangered by reduced sea ice or warming temperatures. It is the Endangered Species Act (ESA) itself that is endangered because the Center for Biological Diversity and their ilk abuse the ESA to promote climate fear. Instead what should rightfully evoke our greatest concern is how climate change alarmism is eroding objective science, allowing untestable hypotheses and flawed models to become codified in our legal system."

Wednesday, 13 December 2017


Here is the evidence for this claim. It is an interesting one which flies in the face of what we are told on TV and in the press on a regular basis. This, as we expect, will never be told to us on the TV or in the press. 

Tuesday, 12 December 2017


I have enjoyed David Attenborough's latest series, Blue Planet 2, immensely with its breath-taking photography and extraordinary insight into the behaviour of sea creatures. There is no doubt it has deservedly been a great success with very high viewing figures. Unfortunately David has gone way over the top (near the end) in this final episode  by showing hydrochloric acid reacting with sea shells and trying to compare this with the effect of adding extra CO2 to sea water. He failed to mention that sea water is alkaline and will remain so even if our emissions of CO2 were to carry on at their present rate for centuries. He also forgot to point out that shell fish can survive quite well alongside thermal vents bubbling CO2 in a constant stream.

It's a pity that Attenborough has done this as it diminishes his extremely high reputation as a trustworthy broadcaster. It may also serve to undermine his other valid claims that our oceans must stop being a dumping ground for plastic and other types of pollution.  

Monday, 11 December 2017


This article explains the technical details of the tax reforms by the President. He very cleverly uses tax experts to end the massive subsidy to these wind farmers.

Sunday, 10 December 2017


This article explains yet another example of government trying to wave their green credentials while hiding the inconvenient facts showing things are rather different in reality. 

Saturday, 9 December 2017


This piece looks at the statistics on where the plastic pollution comes from and finds that all the worst polluters are the developing nations. So despite the fact that it is the developed nations that are the most aware and concerned about this, the problem largely comes from countries like China and Indonesia that do not have enough regulatory enforcement in place to deal with it. The ultimate answer to this problem is increased wealth through industrial development which leads to better government.  

Friday, 8 December 2017


This new paper claims that the true figure for  the rise in global temperature is much less than has been estimated by computer climate models.  The authors, including John Christy, identify and remove the main natural perturbations (e.g. volcanic activity, ENSOs) from the global mean lower tropospheric temperatures (T LT ) over January 1979 - June 2017 to estimate the underlying, potentially human-forced trend. The unaltered value is +0.155 K decade − 1 while the adjusted trend is +0.096 K decade − 1 , related primarily to the removal of volcanic cooling in the early part of the record. This is essentially the same value they determined in 1994 (+0.09 K decade − 1) using only 15 years of data.

Thursday, 7 December 2017


Here is a very interesting, (though rather lengthy) discussion between six expert scientists, three sceptics (John Christy, Richard Lindzen and Judith Curry) and three alarmists (Ben Santer, Isaac Held and William Collins). It could be a foretaste of the red/blue debates that are coming soon. I found it very revealing as it shows that, in private at least, the alarmists show themselves to be much less certain of their position than is the case in public.

This paragraph sets the scene: "The 2014 APS Climate Workshop: A Perfect Venue for Open Debate. Things are different when climate scientists are on the stand alongside their peers who know the science as well as they do, but disagree with the conclusions they draw from the same body of knowledge. Such open debate was on display at the 2014 American Physical Society (APS) climate workshop, which took place in Brooklyn and lasted just over seven hours. A unique event in the annals of the climate debate, it featured three climate scientists who support the climate change consensus and three climate scientists who do not. That format required an unusual degree of honesty about the limitations of the current understanding of the climate system. For the most part, circumspection, qualification, and candid admissions of lack of knowledge were the order of the day. Drawing extensively from the 573-page transcript of the APS climate workshop, this paper examines the gap between how climate scientists debate with each other and how they speak to the media and the wider public".

And here's an extract of one very pertinent exchange: " Steven Koonin, chairing the APS workshop, read an extract from chapter 10 of the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report. Model-simulated responses to forcings—including greenhouse gas forcings—“can be scaled up or down.” To match observations, some of the forcings in some of the models had to be scaled down. But when it came to making the centennial projections, the scaling factors were removed, probably resulting in a 25 to 30 percent over-projection of the 2100 warming, Koonin said. Only the transcript does full justice to the exchange that followed.

Dr. Koonin: But if the model tells you that you got the response to the forcing wrong by 30 percent, you should use that same 30 percent factor when you project out a century. Dr. Collins: Yes. And one of the reasons we are not doing that is we are not using the models as [a] statistical projection tool. Dr. Koonin: What are you using them as? Dr. Collins: Well, we took exactly the same models that got the forcing wrong and which got sort of the projections wrong up to 2100. Dr. Koonin: So, why do we even show centennial-scale projections? Dr. Collins: Well, I mean, it is part of the [IPCC] assessment process.

“It is part of the assessment process” is not a scientific justification for using assumptions that are known to be empirically wrong to produce projections that help drive the political narrative of a planet spinning toward a climate catastrophe. [you just could not make this up!]

John Christy’s Congressional Testimony. In 2017, Christy took his analysis of the model prediction of a tropical tropospherical hot spot to the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee. “To test this result we follow the traditional scientific method in which a claim (hypothesis) is made and then is tested against independent information to see if the claim can be sustained or whether it is falsified,” Christy told the committee.  Comparing model trends with the actual 38-year trend, the models failed to represent real world observations by “a highly significant amount.”  The IPCC had these results in time for inclusion in chapter 10 of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report. What to do with them? The inconvenient findings were relegated to an annex of supplementary material and fashioned into charts that are hard to understand, Christy told the committee. They show model trends in which extra greenhouse gases are included lying completely outside the range of the observational trends, indicating that the GCMs, as hypotheses, failed a simple scientific-method test. It is hard to argue with Christy’s conclusion: “That this information was not clearly and openly presented in the IPCC is evidence of a political process.” The IPCC then went on to increase its confidence in asserting that humans were causing the majority of climate change based on those very same models.

Do read it all at the above link and see just how much doubt and uncertainty is expressed by those alarmist scientists, who in public express no doubt whatsoever.  

Wednesday, 6 December 2017


U.S. Justice Department In Talks With Scientists Over Looming Climate Court BattleClimatewire, 4 December 2017
 Scott Waldman, E&E News reporter

Justice Department lawyers are quietly courting climate scientists for a simmering legal fight that could have massive implications for government global warming policies.

In recent months, Department of Justice officials have met with Ken Caldeira, an atmospheric scientist in the Department of Global Ecology at the Carnegie Institution for Science, as well as Judith Curry, a professor emeritus at the Georgia Institute of Technology's School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences who has broken with many of her colleagues in the field by questioning the extent of humanity's role in climate change.

The Justice Department officials questioned the scientists about the level of certainty in climate science, possibly in an effort to help formulate a legal argument that would maintain that climate change is not enough of a dire threat to require immediate government action. The case has the potential to be one of the first Trump administration legal showdowns over climate science. For now, the department is casting a wide net, consulting with climate scientists, environmental law experts and economists, according to the researchers.

A children's climate change case, known as Juliana v. United States, was filed in 2015 by 21 young plaintiffs who claimed their constitutional rights had been violated by government inaction on climate change.

Earlier this year, just days before Trump took office, the Obama administration Justice Department argued that there is no widespread belief among scientists that the world's climate becomes dangerous after passing the 350-parts-per-million mark for atmospheric carbon dioxide, a key metric in the case. Scientists have noted that the current level of CO2, which is about 410 ppm, has not been seen in at least 800,000 years.

Where the Trump administration will take the argument, if the case should proceed to trial, remains an open question. Trump and many top Cabinet officials have rejected the mainstream scientific consensus that humans are warming the planet at an unprecedented pace.

Phil Gregory, an attorney representing the plaintiffs, compared the case to the famous Scopes monkey trial of 1925, when a high school teacher fought for the right to teach human evolution in public schools. The difference now, he said, is that this case would be a showdown on climate science in a courtroom.

Ultimately, the case could have even broader implications than an upcoming "red team" climate debate exercise planned by U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt because it could yield future government action on climate change, according to Gregory. He said his plaintiffs have extensive evidence that glacial melt, coral reef destruction and rising temperatures pose a grave threat to future generations.

"What we're going to have is the youth of America and their climate scientists," he said. "The Trump administration can bring on any scientist it wants, and we can have that debate based on evidence in a courtroom, so it's better than the Scopes trial, because in the Scopes trial, it wasn't limited to scientific evidence; they talked about the Bible and waved that around."

The next step in the case is oral arguments on Dec. 11 before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. The government, through a writ of mandamus, wants a review of a 2016 decision by a lower court not to throw the case out. If the government is not granted that review, the case could eventually head to trial and climate science could become a central part of a legal argument.

Trump has dismissed climate change as a hoax, and chose a number of Cabinet secretaries who question basic climate science. If the case proceeds to trial, however, government lawyers would be forced to argue that climate change does not pose an immediate threat, something mainstream climate science long ago determined is endangering humanity. There has been a significant focus from both critics and supporters of the Trump administration on whether Pruitt will challenge the endangerment finding, the legal undergirding of EPA's climate rules.

Taking on the endangerment finding would be a major legal fight, requiring the creation of a mountain of alternative research to challenge the significant body of peer-reviewed science that shows humans are warming the Earth at an unprecedented pace.

'Put the science on trial'

A few months ago, Justice Department lawyers went out to lunch with Caldeira, he told E&E News.

They asked if he would take the lead on assembling government witnesses for the case. He said the lawyers are career officials, holdovers from the Obama administration. The lawyers told Caldeira they thought the case was weak, but that proving climate change poses an irreversible harm to humanity would benefit the plaintiffs, he said. Their position was that energy policy is something for the legislative branch to grapple with, not the executive branch, he said.

The Justice Department likely reached out to Caldeira because he has been critical of the case, because he does not think the courts are the place to resolve climate policy. He said he would have worked with the Obama Justice Department because he feels a duty as a scientist to ensure that the best available research is used.

But he declined the Justice Department's request for help, he said, because he is concerned that his work would be distorted for political means by the Trump administration.

"Since so much science is publicly funded, scientists have some responsibility to help have good science considered by the judicial process," he said. "Things are terribly clouded because we have such an awful president and such an awful administration, even efforts to try to get good science into the process could result in negative consequences."

Caldeira is also concerned that if reputable scientists don't participate in the case, the Justice Department could use contrarian researchers to weaken established science.

"You could easily imagine the Trump administration arranging things to not having the best available science presented, but having a perverted view of science presented," he said. "So I think there is a conflict if all good scientists refuse to participate because they don't want to collude with the Trump administration, then that leaves only the hacks, and it's likely that the government's case will be buttressed by hack science."

A Justice Department spokesman declined comment. However, it appears the department is still talking to researchers.

Curry said last week that she was still interested in helping the government with the case, but only if it took place in a nonpartisan manner. Curry has broken from many in mainstream climate science by casting doubt on the belief that humans are the primary driver of climate change. She has also published a significant amount of peer-reviewed research in major scientific journals, including on the Arctic and the causes of the climate feedback that have shaped the region.

"I'm prepared to give my best expert advice in a nonpartisan way; they may not like some of it," she said. "You just have to give it your best, deepest, most honest shot of explaining what's what, what we don't know."

The plaintiffs in the case have already submitted an expert review by scientists, economists and other experts in the field that clearly shows the threat climate change poses to future generations, said Gregory, the co-counsel representing the plaintiffs. The government has not submitted a report that would challenge established climate science, and lawyers have essentially argued that producing such a report would be too burdensome, he said.

"Our position all along has been to put the science on trial, and we want for them to bring in recognized scientists and let those individuals submit reports and testify before the courts; that's exactly what we think should happen," he said. "Obviously what's occurring now in our climate should not be decided by politicians, but should be dictated by the best available science."

Tuesday, 5 December 2017


This article summarises the latest situation, as the USA's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) prepares for the upcoming debates on the causes of global warming. It should make for compulsive viewing when it finally gets started.

Monday, 4 December 2017


This article deals with this question in relation to the Bali volcano. There is no doubt that we still no very little about the number of active volcanoes, particularly those under the oceans.

Sunday, 3 December 2017


Here is the account of the treatment of an expert on polar bears, Susan Crockford, for daring to speak out against the false narrative that they are declining due to global warming affecting sea ice in the Arctic. What the so-called consensus scientists don't realise is that this behaviour actually undermines their own 'cause' by encouraging fair-minded people to rally around the person being bullied. 

Saturday, 2 December 2017


Here is a crucial piece of evidence that climate models have failed to predict the real temperature change that has happened in the mid troposphere. The evidence is unequivocal and as such is severely embarrassing to the politicians and climate scientists who continue to ignore it.

Friday, 1 December 2017


The main lobby group for the plastic insulation trade was, until November 2017, called the British Rigid Urethane Foam Manufacturers’ Association [BRUFMA]. Partly in response to Grenfell Tower – or what it refers to as “events of this year” – BRUFMA changed its name to the Insulation Manufacturers Association.

They advertise that they are “influencing UK and local government, specifying authorities, relevant approval and certification bodies,” and have “high level involvement in the drafting and regular revision of British and European standards [and] the Building Regulations.” Its members are promised the “opportunity to influence Government bodies and NGOs” and “direct input into relevant British Standards committees.”

How that influence works in practice is exposed by examination of government efforts to meet the UK’s climate change commitments. Since the Kyoto agreement in 1997 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, successive governments have created rules about how new and refurbished buildings must be insulated to reduce heat loss.

In 2011 the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) turned to the insulation industry for help, inviting representatives onto a Green Deal committee to come up with ways to push more insulation into homes. We discovered that of the 10 firms and construction industry groups on that committee, four were members of BRUFMA. One of them was Celotex, the firm whose plastic insulation would be fitted to the outside of Grenfell Tower four years later.

Celotex technical director Rob Warren was a leading committee member who made his intentions clear on a now-deleted company web page. Under the heading “Celotex enter government,” he said his position on the DECC committee meant he was “working inside government” to “shape this critical policy enabling the insulation industry to maximise the benefits.” Construction expert Simon Hay who was also on the committee told us he was aware of the agenda: “The point from the insulation companies was that they were going to sell a lot more insulation,” he said.

A few years later Celotex revealed that the rules the plastics industry helps to write are key to company profits. Trade magazine Urethanes Technology International reported in 2015 that Warren had told them regulatory change was the “greatest driver” of plastic insulation sales. Without new regulations he was reported as saying: “You cannot give insulation away and the public are not really interested.”