The case began when Tim Nicholson, former head of
sustainability at property firm Grainger PLC was laid off in July
2008 for his criticism of management on the basis of climate change
beliefs. Mr. Nicholson, who renovated his house to be greener and
refuses to fly by air, was upset that Rupert Dickinson, the firm's
chief executive, had an employee fly to him in Ireland to deliver his
When Mr. Nicholson began to gripe and express his
environmental sentiments, he was later dismissed. He took his former
employers to court, contending that the same laws that protect
religious freedoms protected his “philosophical belief about
climate change and the environment.”
His employers contended
that climate change was a scientific, not a religious or
philosophical belief, and thus not legally protected. Mr. Nicholson,
however, insisted that climate change was a philosophical belief as
“philosophy deals with matters that are not capable of scientific
proof.” His lawyer, Shah Qureshi, head of employment law at
Bindmans LLP, added that to not grant AGW beliefs the same
protections as religion would mean “that the more evidence there is
to support your views, the less likely it would be for you to enjoy
protection against discrimination.”
That theory was put to
the test in an unusual court case and in the end Mr. Nicholson
prevailed. Justice Michael Burton who delivered the ruling,
ironically had used the same logic to hand a victory to climate
skeptics over advocates of anthropogenic global warming theory
seeking to show
school children An Inconvenient Truth by Al
Gore. The court, which Justice Burton served on, ruled that
the move was a political, not a scientific work, and was unfit for
Mr Nicholson lauded the verdict,
stating, “I believe man-made climate change is the most important
issue of our time and nothing should stand in the way of diverting
this catastrophe. This philosophical belief that is based on
scientific evidence has now been given the same protection in law as
faith-based religious belief. Belief in man-made climate change is
not a new religion, it is a philosophical belief that reflects my
moral and ethical values and is underlined by the overwhelming
His employers have vowed to
appeal the decision. If it stands, however, it could have major legal
affects in Britain and beyond. Affording environmental beliefs the
same status as religion opens companies to suits from employees
complaining about lack of recycling facilities or offering low-carbon
travel. It also prevents employers from dismissing employees from
their environmental beliefs, even if they seem radical.
the U.S., similar protections exist for employment and
religion/philosophy. The laws are certainly worded differently, but
the British decision could embolden those seeking similar protections
in the U.S. At the end of the day, the ruling forces society to be
accept and cater to a variety of opinions on climate change and
environmentalism, while at the same time making it harder for
organizations, particularly government funded ones, to voice views on
quote: “philosophy deals with matters that are not capable of scientific proof.”
quote: The current theory
quote: A theory like quantum theory or the theory of relativity?
quote: You seem opposed to the idea that we should change our behavior based on the evidence we do have. So according to you, if nobody did anymore climate research
quote: And to the guy that said you wouldn't listen to a throat doctor about a lung infection, that is easily the dumbest fucking analogy I've ever heard.
quote: A theory like quantum theory or the theory of relativity? Emphasizing the word theory doesn't make you any more right. A theory is something that has extensive evidence showing it to be true. It's just one step below a natural law. A hypothesis is something that may or may not be right.
quote: You need to look up the definition of a scientific theory as opposed to what the word means in the dictionary.
quote: You don't need to be a climatologist to perform good science. Good science only requires a good experiment and strict adherence to the Scientific Method.
quote: Imagine, if you can, the world as it would exist today if Gregor Mendel's research had been ignored all because he was a priest and not a trained scientist. He died in 1884 by the way, and his work was almost completely ignored until 1900. It would be a shame if we ignored good science in other fields all because someone doesn't have the right title.
quote: but its also foolish to throw away good science just because it wasn't performed by someone with 20 years experience as a climatologist.
quote: The Big Bang is creationism in disguise, the only major scientific theory (there's that word again) that starts with: "In the beginning..." It fails to even attempt to explain the nature of this "singularity," fails to show mechanisms as to how it changed state from that infinitesimal, and yet all encompassing "point" to a cosmic explosion without time (the state of change) to allow this change.
quote: Maths failed to explain the flight of a bumblebee, or turbulent airflow, but in these cases, the patent inacuracy of teh mathematics was observable by all, no-one created "Dark gravity" to account for the fact that bumblebees do, in fact, fly. It was simply accepted that the maths was incapable of modelling such a complex physical reality...
quote: Now, can all the AGW people admit that its nothing more than blind faith and religion?
quote: Telling us not to give you any of "that Macroevolution/Microevolution crap" is not making a counterargument. It is insulting the opponent and then sticking your fingers in your ears.
quote: The former has been observed in nature. The latter has not.
quote: Ah, but you do. Nobody has ever observed evolution, and observation is an important part of the scientific method. "Ah, but people have observed evolution," you say. But you're wrong, they've seen natural selection, a very different, and very normal development of life.
quote: And no, predictions and theorizations about the fossil record don't count either.
quote: You need faith (or belief, since faith isn't a very palatable word for scientists) to make the leap and fill in the millions of years worth of missing evidence.
quote: Why are we even arguing about this? We should be complaining about making Al Gore a billionaire through global warming alarmism. Blast Al Gore, he's cleverer than we thought! o_O
quote: And I'm sorry but in my mind, an employer can fire you for whatever reason they want.
quote: A sensible person wouldn't believe in lies and fairy tales.
quote: philosophy deals with matters that are not capable of scientific proof.
quote: Belief in man-made climate change is not a new religion, it is a philosophical belief that reflects my moral and ethical values and is underlined by the overwhelming scientific evidence."
quote: I believe man-made climate change is the most important issue of our time and nothing should stand in the way of diverting this catastrophe.
quote: I thought the ALgore said Katrina was caused by we men grilling meat and driving SUVs?
quote: I bet a majority of you global warming alarmist (freedom deniers) cannot name ONE scientist!
quote: the firm's chief executive, had an employee fly to him in Ireland to deliver his Blackberry.
quote: Mr. Nicholson, who renovated his house to be greener and refuses to fly by air ...
quote: Affording environmental beliefs the same status as religion opens companies to suits from employees complaining about lack of recycling facilities or offering low-carbon travel.
quote: An employer is not required to provide an accommodation that causes it an “undue hardship.” The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that this means that an employer need not incur more than minimal costs in order to accommodate an employee’s religious practices. The EEOC has interpreted this to mean that an employer can show that a requested accommodation causes it an undue hardship if accommodating an employee’s religious practices requires anything more than ordinary administrative costs, diminishes efficiency in other jobs, infringes on other employees’ job rights or benefits, impairs workplace safety, causes coworkers to carry the accommodated employee’s share of potentially hazardous or burdensome work, or if the proposed accommodation conflicts with another law or regulation.http://www.adl.org/religious_freedom/resource_kit/...
quote: The bizarre ruling
quote: Record or near-record low October temperatures were experienced in many locations, with temperatures more than 2.0°C below average throughout eastern and alpine areas of the South Island, as well as in the lower half of the North Island. Temperatures were below average (between 0.5°C and 1.2°C below average) elsewhere. Overall for New Zealand, it was the coldest October in 64 years (since 1945), with a national average temperature of 10.6°C (1.4°C below the long-term October average). Such a cold October has occurred only four times in the past 100 years. Record low October temperatures were recorded on the 4th/5th in most North Island locations, and on the 9th at many South Island sites.