The Great Global Warming Swindle  

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The Great Global Warming Swindle (2007) asserts that the view that global warming is man-made was promoted by the British Conservative Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher as a means of promoting nuclear power and reducing the impact of strike action in the state-owned coal industry by the National Union of Mineworkers.

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The Great Global Warming Swindle (2007) is a polemical documentary film that suggests that the scientific opinion on climate change is influenced by funding and political factors, and questions whether scientific consensus on global warming exists. The program was formally criticised by Ofcom, the UK broadcasting regulatory agency, which upheld complaints of misrepresentation made by David King.

The film, made by British television producer Martin Durkin, presents scientists, economists, politicians, writers, and others who dispute the scientific consensus regarding anthropogenic global warming. The programme's publicity materials assert that man-made global warming is "a lie" and "the biggest scam of modern times." Its original working title was "Apocalypse my arse", but the title The Great Global Warming Swindle was later adopted as an allusion to the 1980 mockumentary The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle about British punk band the Sex Pistols.

The UK's Channel 4 premiered the documentary on 8 March 2007. The channel described the film as "a polemic that drew together the well-documented views of a number of respected scientists to reach the same conclusions. This is a controversial film but we feel that it is important that all sides of the debate are aired." According to Hamish Mykura, Channel 4's head of documentaries, the film was commissioned "to present the viewpoint of the small minority of scientists who do not believe global warming is caused by anthropogenic production of carbon dioxide."

Although the documentary was welcomed by global warming sceptics, it was criticised by scientific organisations and individual scientists (including one of the scientists interviewed in the film and one whose research was used to support the film's claims. The film's critics argued that it had misused and fabricated data, relied on out-of-date research, employed misleading arguments, and misrepresented the position of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Later broadcasts corrected three errors in the original film.

Contributors to the programme

The film includes appearances from the following individuals:

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Related programmes and films

  • Against Nature: An earlier controversial Channel 4 programme made by Martin Durkin, which was also critical of the environmental movement and was charged by the Independent Television Commission of the UK for misrepresenting and distorting the views of interviewees by selective editing
  • An Inconvenient Truth: A film that showcases Al Gore's presentation on global warming, arguing that humans are the primary cause of recent climate change
  • Cool It: A documentary film that highlights ideas on how to make the environmental movement less propagandistic and more realistic, which includes de-emphasising efforts to stop global warming
  • The Greenhouse Conspiracy: An earlier Channel 4 documentary broadcast on 12 August 1990, as part of the Equinox series, in which similar claims were made. Three of the people interviewed (Lindzen, Michaels and Spencer) were also interviewed in The Great Global Warming Swindle
  • The Denial Machine – A 2007 Canadian Broadcasting Corporation documentary "how fossil fuel corporations have kept the global warming debate alive long after most scientists believed that global warming was real and had potentially catastrophic consequences". Many interviewees from The Great Global Warming Swindle appeared in—and were the subject of—this film.
  • Doomsday Called Off: A 2005 Canadian Broadcasting Corporation expose raising many of the same criticisms of anthropogenic global warming. It includes interviews with several sources of information used, but not interviewed, in The Great Global Warming Swindle (among whom are Willie Soon and Sallie Baliunas).

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Great Global Warming Swindle" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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