Ward 0, Lukewarmers 3
The Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) has issued a ruling regarding a complaint by Mr Bob Ward, Policy and Communications Director at the Grantham Institute on Climate Change, about an article by Matt Ridley in The Times.
The article in question, “Politics and science are a toxic combination” is here behind The Times paywall and is available in full at The Australian. It discusses the fuss over climate scientist John Bates saying that another climate scientist had his “thumb on the scale”, and recalls some previous examples of dubious behaviour from climate scientists. But please don’t click on the link and read Ridley’s article, because Bob Ward thinks it’s misleading.
IPSO dismissed all of Ward’s complaints, writing for example
While the Committee noted the grounds for the complainant’s disagreement with the columnist (and with Dr Bates) in relation to these matters, the columnist had not failed to take care over the accuracy of these claims, and it did not establish any significant inaccuracies in the column’s discussion of these issues…
His views, however controversial, did not raise a breach of Clause 1. There was no breach of the Code in relation to his discussion of these issues.
This is not the first time that Bob Ward’s complaints have been rejected by IPSO.
Ruling 00685-15 dismissed Bob’s complaint about an article by David Rose in the Mail on Sunday, Nasa climate scientists: We said 2014 was the warmest year on record… but we’re only 38% sure we were right (if you must read the article, do so with caution and please bear in mind that Bob thinks it is inaccurate). IPSO said that Rose’s article was not misleading, and the complaint was not upheld.
An earlier ruling in 2014 also involved a Rose article in the Mail, “Exposed: Myth of Arctic Meltdown” (I can’t find a link to the text of this article). This was about the claims from Al Gore and others that the Arctic would probably be ice-free in summer by now. Ward made a number of silly complaints regarding what he thought Rose should have written in the article. Again, the complaint was not upheld.
Update, August 2018: Bob Ward loses another IPSO complaint, this time in relation to an article in the Telegraph by Christopher Booker.