Sir David Attenborough: National Treasure Or Climate Scaremonger?

Posted on Mon 05/03/2021 by


By Dr. John Happs ~

“We must be ready to employ trickery, deceit, law-breaking, withholding and concealing truth. We can and must write in a language which sows among the masses hate, revulsion, scorn, and the like, towards those who disagree with us.”Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (1870-1924). From “Reflections on the Failure of Socialism” by Max Eastman.

The above could well have been written by today’s climate alarmists who seem determined to ignore empirical evidence. They refuse debate and shout down anyone who might challenge their unfounded messages of climate disaster.

There is little doubt that, for many years, Sir David Attenborough’s wildlife documentaries have provided information and entertainment for millions of viewers around the world. It is such a pity that, in his twilight years, we have witnessed his transition from nature communicator to little more than a mouthpiece for the green zealots and others that seek to benefit from climate alarmism.

It appears that Attenborough has moved from being an objective presenter of facts about flora, fauna and their ecosystems to a promoter of (imaginary) catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. Without any empirical evidence, but with ample exaggeration and downright deception, he has blown the climate change non-problem out of all proportion.

“Exaggeration and deception from Sir David Attenborough – surely not!”  I hear you say.

Sir David says that the world is experiencing catastrophic warming.

Perhaps the biggest and most inexcusable lie that Sir David Attenborough repeatedly promotes is that we are currently experiencing unprecedented global warming.

Many lines of evidence clearly show that the Earth has been cooling over the last 65 million years. Ice core analyses, show that we have been experiencing continued cooling since the Minoan Warm Period, around 3,000 years ago. Not surprisingly, the planet has experienced some warming as it emerged from the Little Ice Age (ending around 1850) with some gentle warming as we approached the end of the 20th Century:

Following many years of climate alarmism and warnings of dire consequences (that never happen), satellite and radio-sonde data show there has been virtually no global warming for at least the last 3 decades.

None of these facts prevented Sir David Attenborough from exaggerating both global warming and its many consequences. In 2020 he said:

“As I speak, south east Australia is on fire. Why? Because the temperatures of the Earth are increasing.”

Except that global temperature is NOT increasing and Australian bushfires have little to do with temperature and more to do with arson and more people living in bushland where fuel reduction has been neglected.

His promotion of (imaginary) catastrophic global warming sits alongside other fabrications he has told trusting audiences around the world.

Sir David said that Africa is experiencing dramatic warming.

In his 2013 (BBC1) series on Africa, Attenborough claimed that the wildlife was at a “pivotal moment in their history.”

He added:

“Africa’s climate is certainly changing. Some parts of the continent have become 3.5°C hotter in the past 20 years.”

When the BBC was challenged about the “3.5°C hotter in the past 20 years” claim, the broadcaster conceded that it came, not from empirical evidence, but from a Christian Aid report with support from a range of environmental organisations such as Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and the WWF.

The BBC later removed that segment but the media essentially ignored the error. The damage was done. Sir David didn’t apologise for the falsehood and the public was none the wiser.

More than 140 peer-reviewed, published papers, involving hundreds of scientists have pointed out that there is no unusual global warming taking place and large regions of the planet:

  1. Haven’t showed any warming in decades;
  2. Were just as warm, if not warmer before the advent of the Little Ice Age;
  3. Were actually warmer by several degrees well before industrialisation.

What a pity Sir David doesn’t provide his audiences with that information.

Sir David said that ice is melting rapidly at the poles because of global warming.

David Attenborough’s 2011 “Frozen Planet” nature documentary deliberately misrepresented the rate at which ice is melting at the poles.

Arctic sea ice advances and retreats on a regular basis as a result of natural processes such as shifting currents and wind. Predictions of the demise of sea ice by various climate alarmists (It has foolishly been referred to as the Arctic death spiral) have proved to be completely wrong. In fact current Arctic sea ice extent is normal relative to the 1981-2010 average.

The Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI) monitor Arctic sea ice volumes and they provide up to date empirical evidence showing that alarmists such as Sir David Attenborough are completely wrong:

Liu et al. (2021) have described the Arctic sea ice variability as:

“Largely a mode of internal variability.”

In other words – Arctic sea ice fluctuation is normal.

 Over the last two or three centuries the Western Arctic has had sea ice cover for around 11 months every year despite rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide. This more than reinforces the more rational view that natural variability and not carbon dioxide explain any rise and fall in sea ice coverage.

Curiously, Sir David failed to point out that 10 out of 10 Antarctic weather stations have all shown no warming whilst Antarctic sea ice extent has seen a marked increase over the last four decades:

Sir David said that polar bear numbers are in decline because of global warming.

Adding to the hyperbole about Arctic sea ice, David Attenborough has repeatedly spread misinformation about falling numbers of polar bears. In the 2011 episode of the Frozen Planet series Sir David claimed that female polar bears and their cubs are starving because there is little sea ice left for them to hunt on.

Jim Steele points out that polar bears are not dependent on sea ice:

“In 2007 the 2nd greatest decrease in Arctic sea ice was observed in the waters surrounding Wrangel Island. That summer researchers observed the greatest number of polar bears on the island. However contrary to the less-ice-means-starving-bear theory, there were no signs of increased nutritional stress. Quite the opposite.”

Since 2007 there are still no signs of increased nutritional stress amongst polar bears.

Polar bears were an endangered species numbering around 7,000 in the 1950’s. Thanks to the 1972 Marine Mammal Protection Act and the1974 International Agreement for the Conservation of Polar Bears, numbers now exceed 30,000.

In fact the polar bear recovery story is an excellent example of conservation and common sense at work.

Dr. Susan Crockford is a zoologist and evolutionary biologist at the University of Victoria, Canada. She is an expert on polar bears, pointing out that they have adapted to severe, natural climate change in the past and they will adapt in the future. She adds:

We tend to hear nothing but alarming messages about the current status & welfare of polar bears from animal advocates including lobby groups and activist scientists.

Perhaps Sir David should receive a special mention when it comes to alarming messages about the imaginary demise of polar bears. He failed to consult experts, such as Dr. Susan Crockford, presumably because she has no vested interest in promoting unfounded climate alarmism.

Sir David said that albatross numbers are in decline because of global warming.

In Sir David’s first episode of “Seven Worlds, One Planet” he told us how the albatross population had halved over the last 15 years as a result of (imaginary) heating and storm increase in the Southern Ocean. He told us:

‘The Antarctic is the windiest continent and in recent years climate change has brought storms that are more frequent and even more brutal. Winds now regularly reach 70mph, and the albatross chicks must try to stay on their nests.”

Attenborough claimed that global warming has led to more extreme weather despite the IPCC having made clear there is no evidence for such a claim and a little due diligence would have told him that warming at the poles would lower the temperature difference between the poles and equator, thus reducing storm intensity.

In fact, the reduction in albatross numbers results from industrial fishing boats using longline equipment that traps, not only sea birds, but also dolphins and turtles.

Additional threats to the albatross come from giant petrels and skuas that take fledglings from albatross nests.

So why didn’t Sir David check the facts about the Southern Ocean temperature, extreme weather trends and the real threats to the albatross?

Sir David said that walrus deaths were due to global warming and starving polar bears.

In the Netflix documentary “Our Planet” Sir David claimed that hundreds of walruses fell over an 80 metre cliff in the Arctic because of disappearing sea ice that restricted their hunting and forced polar bears to hunt walruses on land out of desperation.  He made the following claims:

“They do so out of desperation not choice.”

“Their natural home is out on the sea ice, but the ice has retreated away to the north and this is the closest place to their feeding grounds.”

“Every square inch is occupied, climbing over the tightly packed bodies is the only way across the crowd – those beneath can get crushed to death.”

“In a desperate bid to avoid the crush they try to head towards the cliffs.”

“But walruses’ eyesight out of the water is poor, but they can sense the others down below, as they get hungry they need to return to the sea.”

“In their desperation to do so, hundreds fall from heights they should never have scaled.”

Again, Dr. Susan Crockford pointed out that this was pure fabrication, saying:

“Narrator Sir David Attenborough blamed the tragedy on climate change, insisting that lack of summer sea ice due to climate change was to blame for the walrus falling to their deaths without provocation.” 


“The walrus narrative promoted by Sir David Attenborough in the Netflix documentary ‘Our Planet’ is a manipulative sham with no resemblance to reality.”

The actual incident took place in 2017 at Ryrkaypiy in Russia. It was there that a group of polar bears deliberately drove several hundred walruses over a cliff to their deaths before feeding on the dead bodies.

In another bizarre twist to this Attenborough fabrication is the possibility that the filmmakers inadvertently, caused the stampede over the cliff by flying a drone above the walruses scaring them into flight.

US Fish and Wildlife Service officers point out that:

“Walruses often flee haulouts en masse in response to the sight, sound and especially odours from human and machines.”

Journalist James Delingpole asks the question:

“Did wildlife filmmakers from the $25 million Netflix series Our Planet accidentally drive a herd of walruses to their deaths – then lie about the incident afterwards in order to defend their preferred narrative that the creatures were tragic victims of climate change?”

Some might say that viewers were being deliberately deceived so that Attenborough might promote his global warming propaganda.

When challenged about such deception Sir David eventually admitted that the claims he made in the Netflix film and  the initial denials  given  by  the camera  team and producers,  were  untrue.

Dr. Benny Peiser commented:

“We can only be pleased that Sir David has stepped back from the deceptive claims he made in his Netflix show. He and the producers should apologise for the trick they pulled and withdraw the Netflix film that has badly misled and unnecessarily traumatised millions of people and news media around the world.”

Sir David said that beluga whale attacks were due to global warming and starving polar bears.

In the 2019 television series Seven Worlds, One Planet, David Attenborough again misled the public by claiming that polar bears in Hudson Bay were starving due to a lack of sea ice for hunting. This, he claimed, led to the bears being forced to hunt beluga whales close to shore:

“On the shores of Hudson Bay some polar bears are finding a new source of food … The tides come in, bringing with it other Northern giants – beluga whales .. This extraordinary behaviour has only been reported here in this remote corner of North America, and only in the last few years. This one small group of bears has found an ingenious way of surviving the lean summer months. But for others it is not so easy.”

In fact the bears were not starving and their behaviour was not extraordinary. They were fat and healthy and it is not unusual for healthy polar bears to attack beluga whales close to shore. Smith and Sjare (1990), in the journal Arctic describe similar strategies in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Their article: Predation of Belugas and Narwhals by Polar Bears in Nearshore Areas of the Canadian High Arctic can be located at:

The Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) filed a complaint with the BBC, accusing Sir David Attenborough of misleading the public about the state of polar bear populations in Canada and their hunting habits.

But again, the damage had been done with many people now believing that polar bears are in trouble and desperate for other food sources because of (imaginary) global warming.

Sir David said that global warming is now killing bats in Australia.

In 2019, BBC1 screened “Climate Change: The Facts” in which more global warming nonsense was trotted out by Sir David. This time the “climate change victims” were the spectacled flying fox, a native of Papua New Guinea. They are also found in Northern Australia.

Rebecca Koller owns a bat sanctuary near Cairns in Queensland. She related how a recent heatwave, not uncommon in Australia, had left “dead bats as far as the eye could see.”

Sir David appears ready to blame any tragedy on (imaginary) global warming. He quickly attributed the deaths of so many flying foxes to the 42°C temperature on that particular day, as if this was an unprecedented event.  Attenborough, clearly having little knowledge of Australian climate history, failed to understand (or acknowledge) that higher temperatures, associated with birds and bats dying from heat stress, is nothing new.

Watkins Tench was a marine officer who came to Australia with the First Fleet in 1788. He kept an excellent diary and, in 1790, he recorded a temperature of 43°C reporting how:

“An immense flight of bats…dropped dead or in a dying state, unable longer to endure the burning state of the atmosphere.”

Attenborough failed to point out that Sydney’s recent so-called “record hot days” were actually cooler than the weather experienced by the convicts of the First Fleet in Sydney way back in the summer of 1790/91. For instance, at 1.00pm on the 27th December, 1790 (measured at a location just a stones-throw from Observatory Hill) the mercury hit 108.5°F (42.5°C) before peaking at 109°F (42.8°C) at 2.20pm.

The following day the temperature again hit 40.3°C (104.5°F) at 12.30pm.  And later, in February 1791, the temperature in Sydney was recorded at 42.2°C (108°F).

Tench noted in his diary:

“Immense numbers of the large fox bat were seen hanging at the boughs of trees, and dropping into the water… during the excessive heat many dropped dead while on the wing… In several parts of the harbour the ground was covered with different sorts of small birds, some dead, and others gasping for water.” 

Tench recorded the impact on bats due to the extreme heat of February 1791:

“An immense flight of bats, driven before the wind, covered all the trees around the settlement, whence they every moment dropped dead, or in a dying state, unable longer to endure the burning state of the atmosphere. Nor did the perroquettes, (parrots) though tropical birds, bear it better; the ground was strewed with them in the same condition as the bats.”

Had Attenborough bothered to check, he would have found that explorers, such as Charles Sturt, had recorded much higher temperatures than the 42°C he dramatized in his program. Sir David should have located and reported the following facts:

The major Australian drought periods of 1895-1905 (Federation Drought); 1958-68 and 1982-83 were more severe than any recent events.

North Queensland experienced a 70 year drought between 1801-70.

On January 12th, 1896, 47 people died in a heatwave in Bourke, New South Wales when temperatures averaged 47oC for 13 day and between 1923–24 Marble Bar experienced 160 consecutive days with temperatures over 38oC.

We can only imagine what Sir David would say if such events happened in recent times.

Had Attenborough bothered to check the scientific literature he would have found that mass heat-deaths of bats and birds from very high temperatures are hardly unusual in Australia.

Sir David said that global warming is leading to a mass extinction.

Speaking at a meeting of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington DC, Sir David Attenborough said that, unless action is taken to prevent global warming, time is running out to save the natural world from extinction. He added that, on current trends, parts of the world would soon become uninhabitable and migration pressures would become more acute as temperatures continued to rise. He added:

“I find it hard to exaggerate the peril. This is the new extinction and we are half way through it. We are in terrible, terrible trouble and the longer we wait to do something about it the worse it is going to get.”

He added:

“The rate of extinction has been rising dramatically and it is reckoned to be now happening at 100 times the natural evolutionary rate and is accelerating.”

Reckoned by who?

In his movie A Perfect Planet Sir David makes the ridiculous claim that half of all species could die this century in the biggest mass extinction event in 65 million years yet I doubt that Attenborough (or anyone) can point to a mere dozen species that have already become extinct due to (imaginary) global warming.

In 2014, even the political/ideological Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) admitted:

“There is very little confidence that models currently predict extinction risk accurately.”


“Forecasts for very high extinction rates due entirely to climate change may be overestimated.”

Der Spiegel’s Axel Bojanowski agrees:

“The IPCC admits that there is no evidence climate change has led to even a single species becoming extinct thus far. At most, the draft report says, climate change may have played a role in the disappearance of a few amphibians, freshwater fish and mollusks. Yet even the icons of catastrophic global warming, the polar bears, are doing surprisingly well.”

Dr. Philip Stott, Professor of Biogeography at the University of London, has dismissed alarmist claims about current extinction due to (imaginary) global warming. He said:

The earth has gone through many periods of major extinctions, some much bigger in size than even being contemplated today.”

Stott added:

Change is necessary to keep up with change in nature itself. In other words, change is the essence. And the idea that we can keep all species that now exist would be anti-evolutionary, anti-nature and anti the very nature of the earth in which we live.”

Investigative journalist Donna Laframboise explains how some IPCC contributing scientists have attempted to provide a more even-handed account of extinctions whilst UN officials ensure their arguments have little chance of being seen by the media and politicians. She says:

“[The UN] draft a summary known as the Summary for Policymakers (SPM). Then politicians and bureaucrats representing national governments attend a plenary meeting where the summary gets examined line-by-line and rewritten…But it gets worse. Over the next few weeks, the text being summarized – the underlying, ostensibly scientific document – will also get changed. That’s not how things normally work, of course. Summaries are supposed to be accurate reflections of longer documents. At the UN, they represent an opportunity to alter those documents, to make them fall into line…This is no sober scientific body, which examines multiple perspectives, and considers alternative hypotheses. The job of the IPBES is to muster only one kind of evidence, the kind that promotes UN environmental treaties.”

Marc Morano testified before the the House “Natural Resources Committee Sub-committee on Water, Oceans and Wildlife” in which he said:

“As an investigative journalist studying the United Nations for decades, there is only one conclusion to be made of this new report: The UN’s Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), hypes and distorts biodiversity issues for lobbying purposes.”

Sir David said that we are experiencing more extreme weather because of global warming.

 In his film “Climate Change: The Facts” Attenborough claimed that extreme weather events such as floods, storms and wildfires are increasing in frequency and severity because of global warming. Showing scenes of huge waves and hurricanes along with dramatic music, Attenborough said that evidence for these events is now incontrovertible. In fact he provided no empirical evidence for his alarmist claim that is patently false.

Many peer-reviewed, published papers demonstrate, with empirical evidence, that we are currently experiencing a period of climate stability.  Many of these papers can be located at: remarkably-stable-modern-climate-fewer-intense-storms-hurricanes- droughts-floods-fires/

Even the political/ideological IPCC, in its 2013 and 2018 reports, rejected Attenborough’s alarmist claim. The IPCC noted that there is no evidence to show that drought, floods, hurricanes and tornadoes have increased, despite rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide.

The IPCC’s Working Group II (AR5) reported:

“Apart from detection, loss trends have not been conclusively attributed to anthropogenic climate change; most such claims are not based on scientific attribution methods.” (AR5 10.7.3)

On tropical cyclones, the IPCC reported:

“There is low confidence in any observed long-term (i.e., 40 years or more) increases in tropical cyclone activity (i.e., intensity, frequency, duration), after accounting for past changes in observing capabilities.” [3.3.2, 3.3.3, 3.4.4, 3.4.5]


“Over periods of a century or more, evidence suggests slight decreases in the frequency of tropical cyclones making landfall in the North Atlantic and the South Pacific.”

On tornadoes and hail, the IPCC reports:

“There is low confidence in observed trends in small spatial-scale phenomena such as tornadoes and hail because of data inhomogeneities and inadequacies in monitoring systems.”

 [3.3.2, 3.3.3, 3.4.4, 3.4.5]

On droughts, the IPCC reported:

“There is medium confidence that some regions of the world have experienced more intense and longer droughts, in particular in southern Europe and West Africa, but in some regions droughts have become less frequent, less intense, or shorter, for example, in central North America and northwestern Australia.”

On floods, the IPCC reports:

“There is limited to medium evidence available to assess climate-driven observed changes in the magnitude and frequency of floods at regional scales because the available instrumental records of floods at gauge stations are limited in space and time, and because of confounding effects of changes in land use and engineering. Furthermore, there is low agreement in this evidence, and thus overall low confidence at the global scale regarding even the sign of these changes.” [3.5.2]

The IPCC provides quite a different account to the doom and gloom scenarios paraded by Sir David Attenborough.

Climate alarmists like to refer to insurance losses from natural disasters. However, data from 1966 to 2017 showed:

“When aggregated by season, there is no trend in normalised losses from weather-related perils; in other words, after we normalise for changes we know to have taken place, no residual signal remains to be explained by changes in the occurrence of extreme weather events, regardless of cause.”


“In sum, the rising cost of natural disasters is being driven by where and how we chose to live and with more people living in vulnerable locations with more to lose, natural disasters remain an important problem irrespective of a warming climate.”

IPCC contributing scientist Dr. Indur Goklany places extreme weather events and deaths in perspective:

“Not only do “extreme weather events” account for a tiny fraction of deaths — five one-hundredths of one percent — but the rate at which angry weather kills people has been falling steadily and continues to do so from the last decade to this.”

In 2018 Dr. Bjorn Lomborg concluded

“Notice that the reduction in absolute deaths has happened while the global population has increased four-fold. The individual risk of dying from climate-related disasters has declined by 98.9%. Last year, fewer people died in climate disasters than at any point in the last three decades.” fewer-people-die-from-climate-related-natural-disasters/

Sir David said that the oceans are heating up and becoming acidic.

Sir David Attenborough seems equally concerned about (imaginary) warming of the oceans and ocean acidification, saying:

“The twin perils brought by climate change – an increase in the temperature of the ocean and in its acidity – threaten its very existence. If they continue to rise at the present rate, the reefs will be gone within decades. And that would be a global catastrophe.”

A little due diligence from Attenborough would have told him that oceans can warm spontaneously by up to 8°C in less than 100 years and numerous studies have shown that ocean temperatures can vary significantly and naturally. According to Li and Born (2019):

“No external forcing mechanism is required for these abrupt warming events.”

Gomes et al. (2020) examined the sea surface temperatures (SSTs) off the coasts of Lisbon and, in addition to finding the SSTs were 5°C warmer (19.7°C vs. 14.6°C) about 11,000 years ago compared to the last millennium, they recorded a “sudden warming episode (in <100 years), of ~8 °C” for this region.

Davis et al. (2020) have shown that sea surface temperatures were 4-5 °C warmer during the Early Holocene.

Sir David’s suggestion that oceans could become acidic and threaten all calcareous organisms is nonsense and deliberately alarmist since all oceans are highly buffered with no prospect of them become acidic. Slightly lower alkalinity is not acidic!

Marine life likes to be where carbon dioxide is plentiful. In locations saturated by carbon dioxide from volcanic vents marine life flourishes. Hendriks et al. (2010) conclude that the world’s marine biota are:

“More resistant to ocean acidification than suggested by pessimistic predictions identifying ocean acidification as a major threat to marine biodiversity.”

In summary:

“The truth is CO2 is the most important food for all life on Earth, including marine life. It is the main food for photosynthetic plankton (algae), which in turn is the food for the entire food chain in the sea. On top of this some marine organisms use CO2 to produce their skeletons of calcium carbonate. This has led to the ever-increasing amount of limestone amongst the sedimentary rocks, sequestering vast amounts of carbon dioxide.”

Sir David said that Arctic ice melt and sea level rise threaten cities.

 Sir David Attenborough has claimed that Arctic sea ice-melt and dramatic sea level rise is the result of (imaginary) global warming via the trivial levels of anthropogenic carbon dioxide. He says:

“We are facing a real crisis, this is not just talk or fantasy. If we heat the earth so the Arctic melts, every city will be under water. Most cities are near the coast.”

There is no evidence to show that sea level rise is increasing over the (expected) rate experienced since the Earth has emerged from the Little Ice Age. NASA satellites have shown no significant acceleration in mean sea level rise over 3 decades of observation.

The claim that melting Arctic sea ice will lead to dramatic sea level rise is absurd. Scott and Hansen writing for the NASA Earth Observatory note:

“Contrary to some public misconceptions, sea ice does not influence sea level. Because it is already floating in the ocean, sea ice is already displacing its own weight. Melting sea ice won’t raise ocean levels any more than melting ice cubes will cause a glass of ice water to overflow.”

Even if Attenborough included hypothetical ice melt on Greenland he would still be wrong. Greenland has experienced the same average temperature over the last 140 years when anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions have been increasing as Mikkelsen et al. (2018) demonstrated in their paper: “Influence of temperature fluctuations on equilibrium ice sheet volume.”

Mikkelsen et al. have provided the following graph showing no evidence of warming over Greenland since 1860:

These findings are supported by research from Chylek et al. (2004) who concluded that Greenland temperatures plateaued during the 1930’s and since 1940 there has been a long-term cooling trend.

Perhaps Sir David can explain why Iceland’s Hofsjökull, Langjökull, Mýrdalsjökull, and Vatnajökull glaciers have grown over the last 12 months and why Greenland and Iceland have gained about 45 percent more ice mass than “normal” over the past three years.

Sir David said that heat stress has led to the deaths of one third of the world’s corals.

Sir David Attenborough claimed that:

“In the last three years, repeated heat stress has caused a third of the world’s corals to first bleach and then die.”

This gross exaggeration is exposed by ample research that reports how corals readily recover from regular natural bleaching events. For instance, research from the University of California points to 90% of corals being bleached at the Palmyra Atoll in the Pacific Ocean followed by the rapid recovery of those corals.

In 2016, scientists from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography also visited the Palmyra Atoll site where El Nino conditions had “been pummeling coral reefs worldwide.” They reported:

“The reefs of Palmyra did bleach in 2015 revealing haunting white landscapes, familiar across the globe. However, our team’s work on this remote island has instilled a feeling of hope for the future of coral reefs as many of the once bleached corals have since recovered.”


“On the first dive, it was hard to remember where the bleaching had been. The corals were full of color. Dr. Jennifer Smith has been photographing the same corals on Palmyra for 8 years. Her photos reveal a refreshing new story about the ability of corals to survive this specific stressor.”

No mention of this from Sir David.

For testimony to the resilience of corals, one only has to look at the Bikini Atoll experience in the Marshall Islands. Between 1946 and 1958, 23 nuclear weapons were detonated on the atoll. The explosions vaporised everything across 3 islands, leaving a 2km wide and 70 metre deep crater.

In 2008, scientists dived into the crater and found vast expanses of flourishing coral. Dr. Zoe Richards from the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University reported:

“I didn’t know what to expect — some kind of moonscape perhaps. But it was incredible, huge matrices of branching Porites coral (up to 8 meters [25 feet] high) had established, creating a thriving coral reef habitat.”


“Throughout other parts of the lagoon it was awesome to see coral cover as high as 80 percent and large tree-like branching coral formations with trunks 30 centimeters [12 inches] thick.”

No mention of this from Sir David.

Attenborough could easily have found the many reports of coral recovery from extreme events such as the nuclear devastation at Bikini Atoll and the Montebello Islands. Presumably he decided not to since this hard evidence would have undermined his alarmism about (imaginary) global temperature rise and the devastation this is bringing to coral reefs around the world.

The claims made by Sir David Attenborough about catastrophic anthropogenic global warming, extreme weather, rising sea levels and, impact on all life on Earth and the need to eliminate the use of hydrocarbon energy do not stand up to scrutiny.  As the UK’s Lord Nigel Lawson pointed out:

“Sir David Attenborough is one of our finest journalists and a great expert on animal life. Unfortunately, however, when it comes to global warming, he seems to prefer sensation to objectivity.”


“Two things are clear. First, that Sir David’s alarmism is sheer speculation. Second, that if there is a resumption of warming, the only rational course is to adapt to it, rather than to try (happily a lost cause) to persuade the world to impoverish itself by moving from relatively cheap carbon-based energy to much more expensive non-carbon energy.”

If hypocrisy is what we look for in climate alarmists, then Sir David certainly provides it.

He says

“I don’t think people should fly just for the hell of it.”

Just to make the 1998 series “The Life of Birds” Attenborough travelled to 42 countries, flying the equivalent of 10 times round the world. We can only imagine how much flying he has done over his working life!

But, according to Sir David, flying isn’t for us mere mortals. We should forget those visits to overseas friends or that very ill family member or that overseas vacation we have worked hard and saved for.

It appears that Sir David cares little for you and I. In his latest production “The Year Earth Changed” he told the BBC’s David Shukman:

“.. let us realise that we are intruders, that we are latecomers and that the natural world, by-and-large, would do much better if we weren’t there at all.”

 Attenborough reflected on the impact Covid lockdown restrictions across the world have had on the environment and the natural world. For instance, he appeared pleased that Covid restrictions had all but shut down the African safari tourist trade.

Attenborough pointed out how wild animals were now encroaching more into human settlements as streets and stadiums were empty but he failed to sympathise with those poor people in Africa made poorer as a result of widespread unemployment.

Steven Pinker wouldn’t be surprised that little mention is made of how we have made great strides with improvements in health, air pollution, greening the planet, longevity, wealth, education, equality, safety, child mortality, nourishment, access to clean water, reliable energy and fewer global conflicts.

Pinker comments:

“As with many apocalyptic movements, greenism is laced with misanthropy, including an indifference to starvation, an indulgence in ghoulish fantasies of a depopulated planet, and Nazi-like comparisons of human beings to vermin, pathogens, and cancer.”

It looks as if Britain’s “National Treasure” is becoming an international embarrassment and perhaps the last words should come from Dr. Patrick Moore, co-founder of Greenpeace. In 2014 Moore testified before the US Senate Environment and Public Works Committee saying:

“The fact that we had both higher temperatures and an ice age at a time when CO2 emissions were 10 times higher than they are today fundamentally contradicts the certainty that human-caused CO2 emissions are the main cause of global warming.”


“There is no scientific proof that human emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) are the dominant cause of the minor warming of the Earth’s atmosphere over the past 100 years. If there were such a proof it would be written down for all to see. No actual proof, as it is understood in science, exists.”

Dr. Patrick Moore has made clear his views about Sir David Attenborough’s alarmism:

“Attenborough lies about walruses, albatross, and polar bears on the BBC, so why would we take anything he says seriously?”

But then, lying about extinctions, temperature change, extreme weather, sea level and the scientific consensus on climate change seems acceptable to many climate alarmists.

To borrow from Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn:

“We know that they are lying, they know that they are lying, they even know that we know they are lying ….”

(All images except for the graphs were sourced at

Dr. John Happs M.Sc.1st Class; D.Phil. John has an academic background in the geosciences with special interests in climate, and paleoclimate. He has been a science educator at several universities in Australia and overseas and was President of the Western Australian Skeptics for 25 years.