April Fool’s Report? French Reversal on Climate Policy? Outspoken Skeptical Scientist May Be Tapped as Environmental Minister!

Washington D.C.: A bombshell April 1, 2009 report from the German publication “ScienceBlogs” claimed that renowned geophysicist and former socialist party leader Dr. Claude Allegre – France’s most outspoken global warming skeptic — may be considered as the next French Environment Minister in President Nicolas Sarkozy’s administration. If Dr. Allegre, who has mocked former Vice President Al Gore’s Nobel Prize as “a political gimmick,” is chosen for the appointment, it would send political earthquakes through Europe and the rest of the world. [Editor’s Note: Though the “ScienceBlogs report is dated April 1, it appears it may not be a joke. Regardless of whether Allegre is being considered for the environment minister, there has been speculation in the French media that Allegre may take some position in the Sarkozy government. ]

Allegre is a former believer in man-made global warming who reversed his views in recent years to become one of the most vocal dissenters of man-made global warming fears. [Editor’s Note: Another political shock may be coming from down under as Australia is now pondering throwing in the towel on carbon trading. See: Australia may dump emissions trading scheme and ‘have another crack at it’ later’ & India: ‘It is morally wrong for us to reduce emissions when 40% of Indians do not have access to electricity’ ]

Germany’s “ScienceBlogs” reported on April 1 that the consideration of Allegre “is probably linked to a general shift in French climate policy.” “ScienceBlogs” continued, “Some of my colleagues fear this may also have an influence on the part of the budget which deals with the funding of climate research.”

Dr. Benny Peiser, the editor of the climate policy network CCNet, stressed that the possibility of Allegre becoming the French environmental minister is “no April’s fool joke.” (referring to date of “ScienceBlog’s report) Peiser noted that an April 16 article in Paris Match noted how Allegre has been making pro-Sarkozy statements.

“In recent days, the French media have been reporting that Claude Allegre may replace environment minister Jean Luis Borloo,” Peiser told Climate Depot. “Allègre is France’s most eminent climate skeptic. He has also been a CCNet subscriber for many years,” Peiser explained.

“The very fact that he is a serious contender for the post of environment minister in itself is a clear signal that climate politics in Europe are changing rapidly. It also mirrors similar changes in Poland, Italy