A globally-renowned climate scientist has been forced to step down from a think-tank after he was subjected to ‘Mc-Carthy’-style pressure from scientists around the world.
Professor Lennart Bengtsson, 79, a leading academic from the University of Reading, left the high-profile Global Warming Policy Foundation as a result of the threats, which he described as ‘virtually unbearable’.
The group was set up by former Tory Chancellor Lord Lawson and are sceptical about radical policy changes aimed at combating global warming.
The Swedish climatologist, who has published more than 200 papers, said he received hundreds of emails from colleagues criticising his decision to switch to the organisation.
His ‘defection’ was described as the biggest switch from the pro-climate change lobby to the sceptic camp to date.
He was also abused on science blogs, with one describing the people who condemned him as ‘respectable’ and that his actions amounted to ‘silliness’.
Another described him as a ‘crybaby’.
However, the main pressure came from the US, where a government employee refused to be a co-author on a paper because of his links to the controversial group.