Surprise! Spiegel Online Slams Profiteering From Climate Alarmism… Munich Re Admits: “No Climate Signal”

Spiegel Online published two days ago an excellent article by science journalist Axel Bojanowski on the widespread “disinformation surrounding climate change” and the profit made from the hyping and exaggeration of weather extremes.

Examples cited are the Deutsche Bundesbahn (German Railway), the reinsurance industry, foremost Munich Re, and alarmist climate scientists such as Potsdam Institute’s Stefan Rahmstorf.

All have been playing it loose with the data on weather events and exaggerating (at times grossly) and with the aim of deriving profit, Spiegel reports.

“Foaming at the mouth”

Bojanowski’s piece has since found much praise and positive reaction for its content. For example high profile meteorologist Jörg Kachelmann tweeted (translation follows):

In English:

Grateful that via is allowed to correctly report on the science of climate change, and even if he’ll be confronted by people foaming at the mouth.”

Recently the Swiss meteorologist Kachelmann came under harsh attack from Potsdam scientist Stefan Rahmstorf and a leading German Green politician – for having the nerve to give the real facts on storm frequency and intensity on a television talk round that included Hans-Joachim Schellnhuber.

Seasoned journalist Michael Miersch also tweeted: “The best that I’ve ever read on the instrumentalization of climate change.”

German Railway: climate change as a cover for poor management

Bojanowski begins by describing how today the German Railway (Deutsche Bundesbahn) – once heralded for its outstanding punctuality and overall efficiency – has discovered how to use climate change to deflect blame away from its recent poor management, which over the years has often led to lousy service.

Over the years, the Bundesbahn has made the maintenance of its tracks a victim to cost cutting. Trees and vegetation along the tracks no longer get sufficiently cut back, and so it is common for routes to get blocked during stormy weather. What better excuse than climate change could the Deutsche Bahn have to explain all the disruptions?

Data in fact show no increasing trend in extreme weather

All the cancellations, service shutdowns and delays are of course due to ever increasing storm intensity and frequency, the Deutsche Bahn management likes to claim, and they get the full backing of the media, policymakers and alarmist climate scientists. Yet Bojanowski calls out these claims by the Bundesbahn for what they are: lame excuses based on hyped up science.

The Spiegel journalist writes that a number of scientists have shown that there has in fact been no increase in storm intensity and frequency in Europe, commenting:

That’s amazing, as many scientists anticipate fewer storms in Central Europe as a consequence of climate change.”

Munich Re bilking the public with climate hype?

Another industry caught hyping up extreme weather activity is the reinsurance industry, which insures regular insurance companies against major claims events. The reason for the added hype: justification for hefty premium increases, Bojanowski suggests.

Munich Re admits no real climate signal

One company Bojanowski cites is the world’s largest reinsurer, Munich Re, which annually publishes a report on “natural catastrophes”, in which the company likes to blame climate change, cite alarmist experts and claim there is today a “new normal”. When asked by Spiegel to comment concerning data showing that it isn’t really so, a climate expert from Munch Re was forced to admit:

The blanket statement that weather-dependent damages worldwide show a climate signal cannot be supported.”

So even the Munich Re knows their claims are hype, yet they continue preaching climate doom and gloom.

Bojanowski also accuses the reinsurers and alarmist climate scientists of “staying silent on claims from the scientific community that it’s all very much in dispute“.

The Spiegel journalist also describes how companies selling environmental products also shamelessly hype climate change in order to get municipalities and cities to invest more in climate protection and environmental systems. Such companies often pay (handsomely) alarmist scientists, such as those from the Potsdam Institute, to spread fear over a rapidly approaching climate doom.

Environmental companies spreading climate hype

Recently there was a panel of climate experts at the IFAT industrial trade fair for wastewater technology, which saw 3000 environmental companies participating. The panel held a “future dialog” dubbed: “Weather extremes – are we defenseless?” Bojanowski reports that the panel spoke of which weather extremes have been on the increase, but how they kept silent about this still being very much in dispute among climate scientists.

One panel member was none other than Potsdam climate alarmist/skeptic attack dog, Stefan Rahmstorf.

Unmentioned by the panel, Bojanowski writes, was the fact that the UN “could not detect any relationship between floods and storms and global warming“.

Shameless exploitation/hypocrisy

Unfortunately Spiegel — in its otherwise praiseworthy article — failed to mention two other parties who have a major stake in climate hype: the media (like Spiegel itself), who have profited immensely from spectacular climate claims, and politicians, who unabashedly exploit climate catastrophism to try to gain more control over society.

Spiegel has also shamelessly hyped climate change…front covers over the years.

And let’s not even bring up the wind and solar energy industry, where trillions have been committed in part based on gross climate alarmism of the sort Spiegel has long peddled (see Figure above).

58 responses to “Surprise! Spiegel Online Slams Profiteering From Climate Alarmism… Munich Re Admits: “No Climate Signal””

  1. Green Sand

    The $82 Billion Prediction

    “…..RMS, a multimillion-dollar company that helps insurers estimate hurricane losses and other risks, brought four hand-picked scientists together in a Bermuda hotel room.

    There, on a Saturday in October 2005, the company gathered the justification it needed to rewrite hurricane risk. Instead of using 120 years of history to calculate the average number of storms each year, RMS used the scientists’ work as the basis for a new crystal ball, a computer model that would estimate storms for the next five years.

    The change created an $82 billion gap between the money insurers had and what they needed, a hole they spent the next five years trying to fill with rate increases and policy cancellations.

    RMS said the change that drove Florida property insurance bills to record highs was based on “scientific consensus.”

    The reality was quite different……..

    ……Joining them was British climate physicist Mark Saunders, who argued that insurers could use model predictions from his insurance-industry-funded center to increase profits 30 percent.

    The rock star in the room was Kerry Emanuel, the oracle of climate change from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Just two weeks before Katrina, one of the world’s leading scientific journals had published Emanuel’s concise but frightening paper claiming humanity had changed the weather and doubled the damage potential of cyclones worldwide……”

    Read it all

  2. SebastianH

    Please don’t “fail to mention” that most of us normal people aren’t at all alarmed by climate changed and react very calmly by implementing policies and supporting greener products, just because that is the reasonable thing to do.

    Also, the media I watch and read isn’t constantly alarmed like certain 24/7 newscycle TV stations and tabloid newspapers. You should think about your media consumption if you feel that is the case.

    and politicians who shamelessly exploit climate catastrophism to take more control over society.

    And there it is again … the conspiracy and anti-government thinking. What control are you talking about?

  3. Bitter&twisted

    These admissions come as no surprise.
    What started as a leftist conspiracy to transfer money from the “rich” Western nations to various 3rd. World kleptocracies, via the U.N., has been co-opted into the biggest scam in history, siphoning money from the taxpayer to the snake-oil salesmen of “green” technology and insurance rip-offs.
    Seb, I’m surprised you would support such an obvious capitalist fraud.

    1. SebastianH

      Are you sure you aren’t just falling for a conspiracy theory? Why do you feel you have been the victim here? This is very irrational behavior…

      1. AndyG55

        Agenda 21, or whatever its now called, is WRIT LARGE.

        There is no need to call it a conspiracy theory.

        It is a FACT.

        You are again, just trying to DISTRACT from the REALITY of the situation by DENYING it exists.

        Typical irrational far-left ploy.

        You don’t fool ANYONE but yourself, seb. ALWAYS. !!

        1. yonason (from my cell phone)

          In the UN’s own words, Agenda 21 is “a comprehensive plan of action” impacting everything humans everywhere do that has “impacts on the environment.”

          I.e., it is total enslavement of everyone everywhere to the whims of radical pseudo-environmentalists like SebH.

          The IPCC is tasked to frighten everyone into submitting to the insanity. No lie is too small to tell in order to establish world domination by a bunch of self-serving psychopaths.

        2. yonason (from my cell phone)

          Hi Pierre.

          Please dig out my last comment from spam. Thanks.

      2. Henning Nielsen

        Do you have any information of the status of the UN Green Fund? The fund that is supposed to distriubte lots of bilions of dollars every year from 2020? That is quite soon. One would think that the media is filled with happy news about over-zealous donations. But there is very little written about it. Maybe it is a conspiracy that hinders the money from rolling in?

      3. Orson Olson

        Perhaps Sebastian will the consider the perspective of THREE PhD students in climatology during the 1970s – two at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, one at the University of London – on the matter. All three TELL ME that cooling, during their time there, WAS THE CONSENSUS.

        While I was only a teenager during the 1970s, earth sciences was my interest, and amateur astronomy my specialty (although only one in our student group, became an astrophysicist now at Carleton College in Minnesota, many friends did do doctorates in physics) – I was piqued by the controversy, but unpersuaded by the paucity of evidence to support the hypothesis severe global cooling.

        MY skepticism then (during the fad ‘science’ of AGW) as now went rewarded. At least intellectually.

        If you can’t be persuaded by abstract (and yes, to some extent arbitrary meta-studies), how about those who were there then? – on the front lines of the science?

  4. AndyG55

    OT, Some data from China on the demise of Coal. 😉

  5. Christopher Hanley

    “And there it is again … the conspiracy and anti-government thinking. What control are you talking about? …”.
    There’s no need for a “conspiracy”, the UNFCCC Executive Secretary who administered the Paris Agreement admitted it herself:
    “This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution …
    … This is probably the most difficult task we have ever given ourselves, which is to intentionally transform the economic development model for the first time in human history” (Christiana Figueres 3 February 2015).
    The “we” she refers to is a bunch of unelected UN bureaucrats apparently using Climate Change™ as a tool to change the course of human history — some hubris!
    To be unperturbed by, let alone support, such a startling statement on intent is not “normal”.

    1. AndyG55

      WELL SAID, Christopher.

      The AGW Agenda is very much part of the much further ranging Totalitarian-Socialist, Left-Wing-Fascist, Unelected-Bureaucratic-One-World-Government Agenda.


      And as you say, those that support any part of this putrid, anti-human agenda, really need to have their sanity queried.

    2. SebastianH

      The “we” she refers to is a bunch of unelected UN bureaucrats

      It refers to all the normal people on this planet who recognize the fossil fuel bonanza can’t go on forever without consequences and who would rather transition to a sustainable future early. Once you realize that it’s inevitable, you’ll maybe also recognize that staying behind – like the U.S. president currently does – is not a good strategy in that global game.

      As with every game, only those who play can actually win.

      Totalitarian-Socialist, Left-Wing-Fascist, Unelected-Bureaucratic-One-World-Government Agenda.

      Ok, usually Nazism is described this way, it doesn’t make it about the left just by exchanging “right” with “left” … you are definetely living on a different planet.

      And no, the world is not led by “leftists”. Stop victimizing those who stand to lose something while we transition to a sustainable future. They aren’t victims. They have won big in the past decades and are still winning.

      1. AndyG55

        DENY what your brain-washing masters have said.

        That’s all you can do, hey seb

        We already had a sustainable future, what CAN’T be sustained is the idiocy of WASTING massive amounts of funds on UNRELIABLE, ENVIRONMENT DESTROYING wind and solar.

        1. tom0mason

          And of course AndyG55
          “As with every game, only those who play can actually win.”

          In the EU the elite are in control, the populous can rant and rage, even elect who they wish, but the elite stay put (they’re not elected!).

          In the EU only the self appointing elites are in the game!

      2. Bitter&twisted

        Seb, the best thing that has happened in the last two years is the election of Trump.
        I don’t like him as a person, but he is certainly hitting the right targets, including the cult of global warming.
        With America no longer shooting itself in the foot with insane green policies, Trump is revitalises its industry, with cheap, low pollution gas.
        They will actually reduce CO2 emissions more than the virtue-signaling Europeans with their UN-inspired economic suicide note.

        1. SebastianH

          With America no longer shooting itself […]

          Au contraire.

          They will actually reduce CO2 emissions more than the virtue-signaling Europeans with their UN-inspired economic suicide note.

          Like a 200 kg person can lose more weight than a 70 kg person? What an accomplishment …

          1. AndyG55

            What a ridiculously EMPTY post again, seb

            Keep SAYING NOTHING. it suits you.

  6. tom0mason

    I hope you all have your fossil fuel life sorted for the coming week. Europe is looking to have a significantly colder end to February/start of March.
    GFS plot of ground level (2m) temperatures across Europe —

    1. SebastianH

      Colder than what? Do you mean we finally get a winter like it used to be? Hurray!

      1. AndyG55

        Don’t worry seb .

        Just keep those fossil fuel powered heaters going, you will be ok,

        Your granny can obviously afford the electricity for you…

        … many others can’t.

  7. Orson Olson

    A comment of general interest on the Der Spiegel story and Munich Re.
    “One company Bojanowski cites is the world’s largest reinsurer, Munich Re, which annually publishes a report on ‘natural catastrophes’….” Isn’t this expected by folks paying attention?

    For example, as a reader of Roger A Piekle, Jr’s blog a decade ago, wasn’t the failure of “Munich Re” to produce data that supported alarmist views of changing weather and climate a noted and perhaps recurrent fact repotted there?

    That’s my recollection, at least.

    AGW scientists and the IPCC would announce alarm, papers would get shoved under or through the deadline. When the later paper of data is released, the conclusions are nowhere found to support them.

    Put in slang terms….”SQUIRREL!” Political diversions for action junkies, rubes, and uncritical “motivated reasoners.” as well as practitioners of groupthink.

    But certainly to see this reality finally confronted in Germany is truly welcome.

    1. Yonason (from a friend's comp)

      Thanks, Orson. I wasn’t familiar with the term “motivated reasoning,” but after looking it up, I see a high degree of similarity between that and much of the “reasoning” of SebastianH.

      “Motivated reasoning is confirmation bias taken to the next level. Motivated reasoning leads people to confirm what they already believe, while ignoring contrary data.”

      Yup, that’s SebH to a tee!