IPCC Chairman In Hot Water Over Alleged Conflicts Of Interest

  • Date: 17/01/10

Millions of pounds of British taxpayers’ money is being paid to an organisation in India run by Dr Rajendra Pachauri, the controversial chairman of the UN climate change panel, despite growing concern over its accounts.

A research institute headed by Dr Pachauri will receive up to £10 million funding over the next five years from the Department for International Development (DfID).

The grant comes amid question marks over the finances of The Energy and Resources Institute’s (TERI) London operation. Last week its UK head called in independent accountants after admitting ‘anomalies’ – described as ‘unintentional’ – in its accounts that have prompted demands for the Charity Commission to investigate.

The decision to resubmit accounts follows a Sunday Telegraph investigation into the finances of TERI Europe, which has benefited from funding from other branches of the British Government including the Foreign Office and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Dr Pachauri, TERI’s director-general, has built up a worldwide network of business interests since his appointment as chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 2002. The post, argue critics, has given him huge prestige and influence as the world’s most powerful climate official.

The decision by DfID to fund Dr Pachauri’s institute, based in Delhi, will add to growing concern over allegations of conflict of interest with critics accusing Dr Pachauri and TERI of gaining financially from policies which are formulated as a result of the work he carries out as IPCC chairman – a suggestion he strongly denies.

But Lord Lawson, the former Chancellor who now chairs the Global Warming Policy Foundation, a think tank which challenges the prevailing scientific view on climate change, said: “It is now a wholly legitimate concern to ask questions about possible conflicts of interests. The IPCC is a very influential body and he is obviously very involved in its leadership.”

Ann Widdecombe, one of only a handful of MPs who have openly declared themselves climate sceptics, said: “I would have thought that in the interests of transparency and for the avoidance of doubt he probably should not perform both roles. It makes me uneasy.”

Full story

Recent Popular Articles


We use cookies to help give you the best experience on our website. By continuing without changing your cookie settings, we assume you agree to this. Please read our privacy policy to find out more.