Matt Ridley

30 May 2015

Martin Williams, former head of the government’s air quality science unit, has declared that the reason we have a problem with air pollution now is that ‘policy has been focused… Read more

A sudden glut: the shale revolution has come at a time when western oil demand is falling

Big Oil can expect a long and profitable decline

23 May 2015

It was the kind of megadeal that sets pulses racing in the City. When in early April the oil giant Royal Dutch Shell unveiled a £47 billion takeover of its… Read more


My part in a masterpiece of political correctness

9 May 2015

Damien Hirst, Grayson Perry, James Delingpole: all winners of major art prizes. I was awarded mine last week by Anglia Ruskin University (formerly Anglia Polytechnic) which I think is a… Read more

(Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty)

Welcome to Miliband country: how Labour would wreck rural life

2 May 2015

Imagine rural England five years into a Labour government led by Ed Miliband, and propped up by the SNP and perhaps also the Greens. If you can’t imagine, let me… Read more

UK Braced For Further Storms As Rain And Snow Bring More Flood Misery

How long will it be before the climate forces us to change?

17 January 2015

This time last year, homeowners in Oxfordshire and Berkshire were recovering after storms had brought down power lines and blocked roads. Soon, power cuts were the least of their problems.… Read more


Prue Leith

18 October 2014

‘Please God, make me good, but not yet.’ I know the feeling. As I get older and more deeply retired, I globe-trot more and my carbon footprint is horrendous. And… Read more

Construction Of Europe's Largest Manmade Coastal Nature Reserve Begins On Wallasea Island

Don't blame the 'green blob', Owen Paterson. Blame your boss

9 August 2014

Why did David Cameron send Owen Paterson to Environment if he meant to sack him? Paterson knew and cared about his subject. He wore green wellies with panache, loathed Europe… Read more


Why has Britain signed up for the world’s most expensive power station?

22 February 2014

‘As part of our plan to help Britain succeed, after months of negotiation, today we have a deal for the first nuclear power station in a generation to be built… Read more

18 January 2014

Fat chances The National Obesity Forum said that Britain is reaching a ‘doomsday scenario’ where half the population is obese. What happened to previous government campaigns to tackle obesity? —… Read more

The view from the trapped ship MV Akademik Shokalskiy

Global warming's glorious ship of fools

11 January 2014

Yes, yes, just to get the obligatory ‘of courses’ out of the way up front: of course ‘weather’ is not the same as ‘climate’; and of course the thickest iciest… Read more


Why climate change is good for the world

19 October 2013

Climate change has done more good than harm so far and is likely to continue doing so for most of this century. This is not some barmy, right-wing fantasy; it… Read more


Think fracking’s bad for the countryside? Just look at farming…

31 August 2013

I’m off to Balcombe this weekend. In fact I might even carry a placard and paint my face with a clever pun, like ‘F*** off!’ or ‘Go f*** yourself.’ Because it’s time… Read more

Marc Rich Photo: Getty

The world is better off without Marc Rich – but his heirs still control the price of almost everything

6 July 2013

Marc Rich, the godfather of global commodity trading who died last week, ‘deserves credit as one of the greatest creators and sharers of wealth in business history’, wrote James Breiding… Read more


Meet the greatest threat to our countryside: sheep

1 June 2013

The section of the A83 that runs between Loch Long and Loch Fyne in western Scotland is known as the Rest and Be Thankful. It would be better described as… Read more


Britain can’t afford to surrender to the greens on shale gas

11 May 2013

The scandal of official reluctance to develop Britain’s shale gas potential is at last beginning to surface. It may prove to be the dress rehearsal for the ultimate drama —… Read more


Leaves on the line

18 December 2010

What is happening to trees in Britain? Horse chestnuts now turn brown in July. A microscopic caterpillar eats out the green insides of the leaves; only the outer skins remain.… Read more

Leader: Less heat, more light

4 December 2010

We have heard surprisingly little about the climate change jamboree currently underway in Cancun. Before last year’s Copenhagen summit, there was much hullaballoo. Gordon Brown told us that we had… Read more


Not every aspect pleases

2 June 2010
The Making of the British Landscape Francis Pryor

Allen Lane, pp.848, 30

Half a century ago I read W. G. Hoskins’s book, The Making of the English Landscape, when it first came out. It was for me an eye-opener, as it was… Read more


The whirlwind and the saint

24 March 2010
Zeitoun David Eggers

Hamish Hamilton, pp.352, 18.99

Dave Eggers is the very model of the engaged writer. Since publishing his first book, the memoir A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, he has branched out into all kinds… Read more


Brutal and brutalising

10 March 2010
Eating Animals Jonathan Safran Foer

Hamish Hamilton, pp.352, 20

In this book, Jonathan Safran Foer, the American novelist, tries to make us think about eating meat. He ate meat, then became a vegetarian, then ate meat again, then got… Read more

Liobams lying with rakunks

16 September 2009
The Year of the Flood Margaret Atwood

Bloomsbury, pp.448, 18.99

Set in the future, The Year of the Flood tells the story of the build-up to and aftermath of a pandemic known as the Waterless Flood, which all but eradicates… Read more

A load of hot air

29 April 2009
A Blueprint for a Safer Planet: How to Manage Climate Change and Create a new Era of Progress and Prosperity Nicholas Stern

Bodley Head, pp.246, 16.99

As a general rule, I do not believe in reviewing bad books. Review space is limited, and the many good books that are published deserve first claim on it. But… Read more


Barking up the wrong tree?

18 March 2009
The Vanishing Face of Gaia: A Final Warning James Lovelock

Allen Lane, pp.179, 20

He Knew He Was Right: The Irrepressible Life of James Lovelock and Gaia John Gribbin and Mary Gribbin

Allen Lane, pp.240, 20

The Vanishing Face of Gaia: A Final Warning, by James Lovelock He Knew He Was Right: The Irrepressible Life of James Lovelock and Gaia, by John Gribbin and Mary Gribbin… Read more