A british judge has ruled the Oscar-winning film on global warming, "An Inconvenient Truth," contains "nine errors. " High Court Judge Michael...
LONDON — A British judge has ruled the Oscar-winning film on global warming, “An Inconvenient Truth,” contains “nine errors.”
High Court Judge Michael Burton, deciding a lawsuit that questioned the film’s suitability for showing in British classrooms, said it builds a “powerful” case that global warming is caused by humans and that urgent means are needed to counter it.
But he also said former Vice President Al Gore, the documentary’s moderator, makes nine statements in the film that are not supported by current mainstream scientific consensus. Teachers, Burton concluded, could show the film but must alert students to what the judge called errors.
The judge said that, for instance, Gore’s script implies that Greenland or West Antarctica might melt soon, creating a sea-level rise of up to 20 feet that would cause devastation from San Francisco to the Netherlands to Bangladesh. The judge called this “distinctly alarmist” and said the consensus view is that, if Greenland melted, it would release this amount of water, “but only after, and over, millennia.”
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Burton also said Gore contends that inhabitants of low-lying Pacific atolls have evacuated to New Zealand because of global warming “but there is no such evidence of any such evacuation.”
Kalee Kreider, a Gore spokesman, said he is “gratified that the courts verified that the central argument of ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ is supported by the scientific community.”
Burton’s ruling said there is “now common ground that it is not simply a science film — although it is clear that it is based substantially on scientific research and opinion — but that it is a political film, albeit of course not party political.”
Earlier this year, British education officials began distributing DVDs of Gore’s film to state schools as part of a package designed to educate 3 million secondary-school students on climate change.
The lawsuit was brought by Stewart Dimmock, a local school official who has two sons in state schools, in an attempt to block the program. He claimed the film was inaccurate, politically biased and “sentimental mush” and therefore unsuitable for schools.
Dimmock, who belongs to the tiny New Party, said he was “elated” at the ruling. He said guidance and context that teachers must give along with the film mean that students will not be “indoctrinated with this political spin.”
A spokesman for the Department of Children, Schools and Families said the agency was “delighted” that students could continue to see the film.