Benny Peiser

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Benny Peiser

Benny Peiser (b. 1957) is a UK social anthropologist and AGW denier listed among the Heartland Institute "Global warming experts" despite having no evident expertise in climate science or policy. Peiser is Director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), and as of fall 2011, he is a Visiting Fellow at the right wing University of Buckingham, whose current and former vice chancellors serve on the GWPF academic advisory council.

Background and expertise

Educational background

Peiser was educated in West Germany and studied political science, English, and sports science in Frankfurt.[1]

JMU department was Social Anthropology & Sport Sociology

Peiser's John Moores University departmental webpage described him as:-[2]

  • Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology & Sport Sociology, Liverpool John Moores University
  • Main research interests:
    • societal evolution and neo-catastrophism
    • social implications of historical impact disasters and the current impact hazard
    • ritualised and sanctioned violence
    • origins and evolution of sport

No evident expertise in Climate Science or Climate Policy Analysis

Although Peiser is described by Local Transport Today as a 'climate policy analyst',[3] it is unclear what academic expertise Peiser brings to bear on his climate policy analyses.

No peer reviewed climate publications

According to a search of 22,000 academic journals, Peiser has published 3 research papers in peer-reviewed journals: Sports Medicine, 2006; Journal of Sports Sciences (2004); and, Bioastronomy 2002: life among the stars (2004). None of these studies are related to human-induced climate change.

Affiliations and actions

Academic affiliation

Peiser was a senior lecturer in the School of Sport and Exercise Sciences at Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) until July 2010. According to his Global Warming Policy Foundation bio, he is a visiting fellow at the University of Buckingham;[4]; several individuals with University of Buckingham ties serve on the GWPF's advisory council.

Other affiliations

Peiser runs CCNet (network) to counter 'doomsday scaremongering about the possible effects of climate change'.[5]

Peiser is frequently quoted in Local Transport Today, a transport journal that frequently features the views of climate change skeptics.

Peiser is director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation.[6]

Peiser is co-editor of the skeptic journal Energy and Environment[7] and is on the editorial board of the Electronic Journal of Sustainable Development[8]

Climate denier actions and statements

2011 — FOI double standards

Peiser castigated the University of East Anglia CRU (see: Climategate) for lack of transparency and unwillingness to comply with FOI requests, saying "Until they can be open and transparent, there will remain the questions of reliability and trust."[9] However, in November 2011 the Guardian reported that the GWPF (i.e. Peiser) had itself knocked back several attempts to obtain information about the GWPF through FOI.[10]

2006 — Lobbied Canadian Prime Minister for inaction

Benny Peiser was one of 60 'accredited experts' who in April 2006 wrote to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper denying climate change and urging inaction [11]

2006 — Admission: "an overwhelming majority of climatologists...agreed"

Peiser claims to be a climate change "skeptic," but on October 12, 2006 Peiser states: "I do not think anyone is questioning that we are in a period of global warming. Neither do I doubt that the overwhelming majority of climatologists is agreed that the current warming period is mostly due to human impact." However, he also states that "... this majority consensus is far from unanimous," and that "there is a small community of sceptical researchers that remains extremely active." [5]

2005 — Denier views on Easter Island collapse

In a 2005 article published in the AGW denier journal Energy and Environment, Peiser argued that Jared Diamond and others' attributing Easter Island's cultural collapse to ecocide was false, asking "Why has he turned the victims of cultural and physical extermination into the perpetrators of their own demise?" and arguing that Diamond's "environmental revisionism" "does not hold up to scientific scrutiny."[12]. Objections to the "ecocide" scenario have been addressed by Jared Diamond."[13]

2005 — Claimed his study refuted Oreskes on consensus; claim retracted

Peiser's "claim to fame" in the war on climate change science was a 2005 study that he claimed refuted an earlier study by Dr. Naomi Oreskes.

Originally published in the prestigious publication, Science, the Oreskes study looked at 928 research papers on climate change and found that 100% agreed with the scientific consensus.[14] Peiser originally stated in January 2005 that Oreskes was incorrect and that "in light of the data [Peiser] presented... Science should withdraw Oreskes's study and its results in order to prevent any further damage to the integrity of science." On October 12, 2006, Peiser admitted that only one of the ~1000 research papers he used in his study refuted the scientific consensus on climate change, and that this one study was NOT peer-reviewed and was published by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists[15]. Peiser's incorrect claims were published in the Financial Post section of the National Post, in a May 17, 2005 commentary authored by Peiser himself.[16][15][17]

2001 — Claim: alarmism

In an article on the BBC website he is describe as a 'Leading British anthropologist' and is quoted as saying "Apocalyptics typically exaggerate the possible dangers we may face in the future while ignoring or underestimating the probability of finding a social, technological or medical remedy for the predicament."[18]

Other denier statements on climate

Peiser frequently provides views on climate change science.

  • "Throughout history, moderate warming has significantly contributed to enhanced living standards. ... Lamentably, many climate change researchers have exaggerated the potential health risks due to global warming."[19]
  • "Failure at Copenhagen will be greeted with understandable despair by those people who have been convinced by the doomladen prophecies of numerous climate scientists, many journalists, most political leaders, and all ‘green’ pressure groups."[3]

Articles and resources

Related SourceWatch articles


  1. Peiser, Benny J., Trevor Palmer, and Mark E. Bailey (editors) (1998). Natural Catastrophes During Bronze Age Civilizations, BAR International Series 728. ISBN 0-86054-916-X. p. 251.
  2. Dr Benny Peiser - Senior Lecturer.
  3. 3.0 3.1 UN deadlock puts strain on UK’s transport and climate agenda.
  4. Dr Benny Peiser. Global Warming Policy Foundation. Retrieved on 2011-11-19.
  5. CCnet. Liverpool John Moores University.
  6. "[1]"
  7. "[2]"
  8. "[3]"
  9. Macrae, Fiona (2011 [last update]). Climategate scientists 'too secretive and may have broken Freedom of Information laws' | Mail Online. Retrieved on November 26, 2011.
  10. Carrington, Damian. "Chris Huhne blasts Lord Lawson's climate sceptic thinktank | Environment |", The Guardian, London, England: Guardian Media Group. Retrieved on 26 November 2011. 
  11. "[4]"
  12. Benny Peiser (2005). From Genocide to Ecocide: The Rape of Rapa Nui. Energy and Environment. Retrieved on 2011-11-19.
  13. Jared Diamond (2001-09-22). The myths of Easter Island – Jared Diamond responds. Mark Lynas. Retrieved on 2011-11-19.
  14. Naomi Oreskes, "Beyond the Ivory Tower: The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change", Science, December 3, 2004.
  15. 15.0 15.1 "Bolt's Minority View", MediaWatch, ABC TV, October 30, 2009.
  16. "RE: “The scientific consensus on climate change” - The letter Science Magazine refused to publish", January 4, 2005.
  17. Benny Peiser, "RE: Media Watch enquiry", ABC TV website, October 12, 2006.
  18. Scientists criticise Hawking 'hype'.
  19. It is cold that kills.

External resources

Memorandum to UK Parliament

External articles

Wikipedia also has an article on Benny Peiser. This article may use content from the Wikipedia article under the terms of the GFDL.