Tony Abbott, the former Australian prime minister, has drawn criticism for suggesting climate change “is probably doing good” and claiming that “far more people die in cold snaps”.
Addressing the London-based Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), a climate sceptic thinktank, on Monday evening, Mr Abbott said policies to tackle climate change was like primitive people trying to “appease the volcano gods”.
“There’s the evidence that higher concentrations of carbon dioxide (which is a plant food after all) are actually greening the planet and helping to lift agricultural yields. In most countries, far more people die in cold snaps than in heat waves, so a gradual lift in global temperatures, especially if it’s accompanied by more prosperity and more capacity to adapt to change, might even be beneficial.
It’s actually what the science says too.
The science goes on to say that it doesn’t stay like this as emissions and temperatures rise which is what the problem is. It’s not that unusual for a bit to be a good thing, a lot not so much, any drinker can tell you that.
“At least so far, it’s climate change policy that’s doing harm; climate change itself is probably doing good; or at least, more good than harm.
That’s also true, although the influence of what is being done on that future when the effects, in aggregate, are predicted to be bad is probably good.
Reacting to the speech on Twitter, Ed Miliband, the former Labour leader, said: “I know Donald Trump has lowered the bar for idiocy but…..”
But Ed, he’s actually right here.