Saturday 18 August 2018

BBC Radio 4 Today programme found in breach of broadcasting rules

The ruling is the first time Ofcom has found the BBC in breach since taking over regulation of the corporation last year.

Lord Nigel Lawson (Gareth Fuller/PA)
Lord Nigel Lawson (Gareth Fuller/PA)

By Sherna Noah, Press Association Senior Entertainment Correspondent

BBC Radio 4’s Today programme breached broadcasting rules with Lord Nigel Lawson’s interview on climate change, watchdog Ofcom has said.

The ruling is the first time Ofcom has found the BBC in breach since taking over regulation of the corporation in April last year.

The former chancellor of the exchequer appeared on the programme on August 10.

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Broadcasting House (PA)

His comment that “all the experts say there hasn’t been” an increase in extreme weather events and that the Independent Panel on Climate Change “concedes” this fact was found in breach.

Another statement that, according to the official figures, “during this past 10 years… average world temperature has slightly declined”, was also found in breach of rules on due accuracy.

Other statements were not found in breach.

The Ofcom ruling follows an incident in 2014, when the BBC upheld a complaint over another interview with Lord Lawson about climate change.

An Ofcom spokeswoman said: “We found that statements made about the science of climate change were not challenged sufficiently during this interview, which meant the programme was not duly accurate.

“We’ve told the BBC we are concerned that this was the second incident of this nature, and on the same programme.”

The programme featured a series of discussions about climate change, sparked by the release of a film presented and produced by former US vice-president Al Gore.

Press Association

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