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Mr Nicholson, 42, from Oxford, smiles after he emerges victorious from the court room. A court ruled that it was wrong for Mr. Nicholson's employer to fire him for his belief in global warming, as it was a philosophy afforded equal protections to religion. Mr. Nicholson refuses to fly for fear of carbon pollution.  (Source: Telegraph UK)
When it comes to climate change, just have a little faith!

In an unusual case in the United Kingdom, it has been ruled that climate change beliefs should be afforded the same legal protections as religious freedoms. The bizarre ruling sets a landmark legal precedent and could have broad implications both in Britain and abroad.

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 Blackberry.

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 the classroom. 

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 scientific evidence." 

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. 

In 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 such topics.

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Spanish Inquisition
By xxsk8er101xx on 11/4/2009 8:08:18 PM , Rating: 2
When you mix science with religion you get a strong belief system.

Even if the science is wrong, because the belief and religion is now the corner stone for science, it is very hard to prove wrong. This is a problem because science is always wrong. Science literally means "best guess". No one knows for sure so it needs to be tested constantly.

Similar to the idea that the earth is the center of universe. The earth is flat. These were strong scientific religious ideals. It took hundreds of years to get people to realize they were wrong. It was a huge paradigm shift and at the same time a huge leap in human evolution.

The same thing will happen with global warming nonsense. When 2012 comes and goes and we're still here - when temperatures continue to remain the same if not cooler - even then global warming alarmist will state that global warming is still happening. There could be 60 feet of ice in their backyard and they will still say global warming is real. This is how delusional and stupid these people are - global warming alarmist don't have a clue what science is. They don't know anything about weather but yet claim global warming is real because "Al Gore says 2500 scientists says it is this way".

There is no proof that global warming is catastrophic. None. All I hear and see is hearsay - "scientist say ... ", "2500 scientists agree" - ok that's great who are these "2500 scientists" - what are they're names? Where's the proof? All I see is data that is manipulated and changed by a governmental panel of politicians with agendas. Ie Al Gore racking in huge profits.

Can any of you list 10 scientists that claim global warming is real? 50 names? 200? 2500 names?... I bet a majority of you global warming alarmist (freedom deniers) cannot name ONE scientist! Al Gore is not a scientist!

Global Warming Alarmist ='s Freedom Deniers - pass the word!

RE: Spanish Inquisition
By cmdrdredd on 11/4/2009 10:07:10 PM , Rating: 1
and ppl bitch about us driving SUVs etc while they fly around in private jets which produce more carbon emissions than I could in a year. Way to go retards.

RE: Spanish Inquisition
By VaultDweller on 11/5/2009 12:21:50 PM , Rating: 2
I bet a majority of you global warming alarmist (freedom deniers) cannot name ONE scientist!

You are absolutely right.

Don't really see the point of bringing that up, though. A majority of global warming skeptics cannot name one scientist either.

RE: Spanish Inquisition
By FastEddieLB on 11/6/2009 2:46:21 AM , Rating: 2
We don't need to name anyone, we just have to apply logic to the Global Warming argument.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)
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