New cabinet minister denied climate change in string of tweets

© REUTERS annemarie-trevelyan.jpg

Boris Johnson’s new international trade secretary has been accused of climate emergency denial after a series of tweets came to light in which she insisted the world was not getting hotter and dismissed global warming campaigners as “fanatics”.

In the messages, sent between 2010 and 2012, Anne-Marie Trevelyan approvingly quoted the work of groups which have rejected the mainstream scientific consensus that human activity is driving climate change.

And she stated that one such group had provided “clear evidence that the ice caps aren’t melting after all, to counter those gloom-mongers and global warming fanatics”.

Labour condemned the Berwick MP’s elevation to the cabinet just weeks ahead of the COP26 UN conference being chaired by Boris Johnson in Glasgow, at which the prime minister is hoping to persuade countries from around the world to sign up to ambitious carbon-cutting targets.

Ms Trevelyan was promoted to the International trade brief on Wednesday from a more junior role in the business department where she had responsibility for clean growth.

Her controversial comments on climate change date back to before she entered parliament in 2015, but after she had fought the previous general election as a Tory candidate

In one tweet, backing a campaign against wind farms in 2012, she said: “We aren’t getting hotter, global warming isn’t actually happening.”

And in another message she praised as “intelligent” an article about the “global warming myth” by the Climate Realists group, who argue that temperature rises cannot be blamed on manmade carbon emissions.

At least the last Trade Secretary only hired climate change deniers… pic.twitter.com/8QW9Z0OIwB

Emily Thornberry (@EmilyThornberry) September 15, 2021

In 2011, she gave her support to outspoken climate emergency denier Lord Lawson for “hitting back” at then energy secretary Chris Huhne’s “ideological obsession with manmade climate change”.

Shadow international development secretary Emily Thornberry highlighted the string of messages, with the comment: “At least the last Trade Secretary only hired climate change deniers…”

She was referring to Ms Trevelyan’s predecessor Liz Truss, who hired former Australian PM and climate sceptic Tony Abbott as a UK trade envoy.

There was no immediate comment from the DIT in response to a query from The Independent on Ms Trevelyan’s historic quotes.

But the prime minister’s official spokesperson said: “Every single member of cabinet is united in our approach to achieve our ambitious climate target goals.”

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