April Fool’s Report? French Reversal on Climate Policy? Outspoken Skeptical Scientist May Be Tapped as Environmental Minister!


By: - Climate DepotApril 16, 2009 1:17 PM

Washington D.C.: A bombshell April 1, 2009 report from the German publication “ScienceBlogs” claimed that renowned geophysicist and former socialist party leader Dr. Claude Allegre – France’s most outspoken global warming skeptic — may be considered as the next French Environment Minister in President Nicolas Sarkozy’s administration. If Dr. Allegre, who has mocked former Vice President Al Gore’s Nobel Prize as “a political gimmick,” is chosen for the appointment, it would send political earthquakes through Europe and the rest of the world. [Editor’s Note: Though the “ScienceBlogs report is dated April 1, it appears it may not be a joke. Regardless of whether Allegre is being considered for the environment minister, there has been speculation in the French media that Allegre may take some position in the Sarkozy government. ]

Allegre is a former believer in man-made global warming who reversed his views in recent years to become one of the most vocal dissenters of man-made global warming fears. [Editor’s Note: Another political shock may be coming from down under as Australia is now pondering throwing in the towel on carbon trading. See: Australia may dump emissions trading scheme and ‘have another crack at it’ later’ & India: ‘It is morally wrong for us to reduce emissions when 40% of Indians do not have access to electricity’ ]

Germany’s “ScienceBlogs” reported on April 1 that the consideration of Allegre “is probably linked to a general shift in French climate policy.” “ScienceBlogs” continued, “Some of my colleagues fear this may also have an influence on the part of the budget which deals with the funding of climate research.”

Dr. Benny Peiser, the editor of the climate policy network CCNet, stressed that the possibility of Allegre becoming the French environmental minister is “no April’s fool joke.” (referring to date of “ScienceBlog’s report) Peiser noted that an April 16 article in Paris Match noted how Allegre has been making pro-Sarkozy statements.

“In recent days, the French media have been reporting that Claude Allegre may replace environment minister Jean Luis Borloo,” Peiser told Climate Depot. “Allègre is France’s most eminent climate skeptic. He has also been a CCNet subscriber for many years,” Peiser explained.

“The very fact that he is a serious contender for the post of environment minister in itself is a clear signal that climate politics in Europe are changing rapidly. It also mirrors similar changes in Poland, Italy and Germany where political opposition to self-destructive climate policies is rising sharply,” Peiser said. “If that was supposed to be an April fool’s it has backfired spectacularly as an Allegre ministry has been over the French media,” he added. [ Update via Peiser: More speculation: April 20, 2009: “The President intends to pursue the opening [of his government]. He may turn to Agriculture Michel Mercier, the president of the centrist group in the Senate, but also to the left, the name of Claude Allègre returning regularly.” (La Depeche, 16 April 2009) Sarkozy already offered Allegre a ministerial post in 2007: “Recently, Sarkozy also offered a ministerial post to the former Education Minister Claude Allègre, but Allegre declined the offer.” – “Will Claude Allègre become a minister after the next reshuffle?” – Elyseeinside, 18 April 2009 According to L’Express, Claude Allègre may be to direct a large government department, bringing together higher education, research and industry. ]

Allegre, a former French Socialist Party leader and a member of both the French and U.S. Academies of Science, was one of the first scientists to sound global warming fears 20 years ago, but he now says the cause of climate change is “unknown.” Allegre has authored more than 100 scientific articles, written 11 books, and received numerous scientific awards including the Goldschmidt Medal from the Geochemical Society of the United States.

Called Gore’s Nobel Prize ‘Political Gimmick’

Allegre was one of 1500 scientists who signed a November 18, 1992, letter titled “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity” in which the scientists warned that global warming’s “potential risks are very great.” But Allegre now believes the global warming hysteria is motivated by money. “The ecology of helpless protesting has become a very lucrative business for some people!” he explained. (LINK)

Allegre mocked former Vice President Al Gore’s Nobel Prize in 2007, calling it “a political gimmick.” Allegre said on October 14, 2007, “The amount of nonsense in Al Gore’s film! It’s all politics; it’s designed to intervene in American politics. It’s scandalous.” (LINK)

Ridiculed ‘Prophets of Doom’

Allegre ridiculed what he termed the “prophets of doom of global warming” in a September 2006 article. (LINK) Allegre has mocked “the greenhouse-gas fanatics whose proclamations consist in denouncing man’s role on the climate without doing anything about it except organizing conferences and preparing protocols that become dead letters.”

Capitol Hill’s leading climate skeptic, Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, has highlighted Allegre’s recent conversion to a dissenter of global warming.

“I find it ironic that a free market conservative capitalist in the U.S. Senate and a French Socialist scientist both apparently agree that sound science is not what is driving this debate, but greed by those who would use this issue to line their own pockets,” Inhofe said in an October 26, 2007 speech on the Senate floor.

Allegre was also featured in several U.S. Senate reports on global warming highlighting dissenting scientists. Allegre was featured in a May 15, 2007, report entitled “Climate Momentum Shifting: Prominent Scientists Reverse Belief in Man-made Global Warming – Now Skeptics.” In addition, Allegre was featured in the March 16, 2009, U.S. Senate report entitled “Update: More Than 700 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims.”

Allegre’s full entry in 2009’s U.S. Senate Report: More Than 700 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims

Geophysicist Dr. Claude Allegre, a top Geophysicist and French Socialist who has authored more than 100 scientific articles, written 11 books, and received numerous scientific awards including the Goldschmidt Medal from the Geochemical Society of the United States, converted from climate alarmist to skeptic in 2006.

Allegre, who was one of 123 the first scientists to sound global warming fears 20 years ago, now says the cause of climate change is “unknown” and accused the “prophets of doom of global warming” of being motivated by money, noting that “the ecology of helpless protesting has become a very lucrative business for some people!” “Glaciers’ chronicles or historical archives point to the fact that climate is a capricious phenomena. This fact is confirmed by mathematical meteorological theories. So, let us be cautious,” Allegre explained in a September 21, 2006 article in the French newspaper L’EXPRESS. The National Post in Canada also profiled Allegre on March 2, 2007, noting, “Allegre has the highest environmental credentials. The author of early environmental books, he fought successful battles to protect the ozone layer from CFCs and public health from lead pollution.” Allegre now calls fears of a climate disaster “simplistic and obscuring the true dangers” and mocks “the greenhouse-gas fanatics whose proclamations consist in denouncing man’s role on the climate without doing anything about it except organizing conferences and preparing protocols that become dead letters.” Allegre, a member of both the French and U.S. Academy of Sciences, had previously expressed concern about man-made global warming. “By burning fossil fuels, man enhanced the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which has raised the global mean temperature by half a degree in the last century,” Allegre wrote 20 years ago.

In addition, Allegre was one of 1500 scientists who signed a November 18, 1992 letter titled “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity” in which the scientists warned that global warming’s “potential risks are very great.” Allegre mocked former Vice President Al Gore’s Nobel Prize in 2007, calling it “a political gimmick.” Allegre said on October 14, 2007, “The amount of nonsense in Al Gore’s film! It’s all politics; it’s designed to intervene in American politics. It’s scandalous.”

Related Links:

Report: French Reversal on climate policy? Outspoken Skeptic Claude Allegre May Be Tapped as Environmental Minister!

U.S. Senate Report: More Than 700 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims

U.S. Senate Report: Climate Momentum Shifting: Prominent Scientists Reverse Belief in Man-made Global Warming – Now Skeptics

National Post: Allegre’s second thoughts