[i]"The Great Global Warming Swindle, was based on graphs that were distorted, mislabelled or just plain wrong. The graphs were nevertheless used to attack the credibility and honesty of climate scientists.
A graph central to the programme’s thesis, purporting to show variations in global temperatures over the past century, claimed to show that global warming was not linked with industrial emissions of carbon dioxide. Yet the graph was not what it seemed.
Other graphs used out-of-date information or data that was shown some years ago to be wrong. Yet the programme makers claimed the graphs demonstrated that orthodox climate science was a conspiratorial “lie” foisted on the public.
Channel 4 yesterday distanced itself from the programme, referring this newspaper’s inquiries to a public relations consultant working on behalf of Wag TV, the production company behind the documentary.
Martin Durkin, who wrote and directed the film, admitted yesterday that one of the graphs contained serious errors but he said they were corrected in time for the second transmission of the programme following inquiries by The Independent.
Mr Durkin has already been criticised by one scientist who took part in the programme over alleged misrepresentation of his views on the climate.
The main arguments made in Mr Durkin’s film were that climate change had little if anything to do with man-made carbon dioxide and that global warming can instead be linked directly with solar activity - sun spots.
One of the principal supports for his thesis came in the form of a graph labelled “World Temp - 120 years”, which claimed to show rises and falls in average global temperatures between 1880 and 2000.
Mr Durkin’s film argued that most global warming over the past century occurred between 1900 and 1940 and that there was a period of cooling between 1940 and 1975 when the post-war economic boom was under way. This showed, he said, that global warming had little to do with industrial emissions of carbon dioxide.
The programme-makers labelled the source of the world temperature data as “Nasa” but when we inquired about where we could find this information, we received an email through Wag TV’s PR consultant saying that the graph was drawn from a 1998 diagram published in an obscure journal called Medical Sentinel. The authors of the paper are well-known climate sceptics who were funded by the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine and the George C Marshall Institute, a right-wing Washington think-tank."[/i]