The BBC’s Today programme “preaches” to its listeners, its guest editor and Telegraph columnist Charles Moore has said as he described how he had to battle to get a climate change skeptic onto the Radio 4 show.
Mr Moore, who edited Saturday’s edition of the flagship show, accused the BBC of being “biased” on climate change and promoting “alarmism” about its consequences.
The former editor of the Telegraph said he also faced “obstacles” from within the corporation to getting science writer Lord Matthew Ridley onto the show.
The Conservative peer has argued that the risks of climate change are “greatly exaggerated” and that the BBC regularly gives airtime to “doomsday cultists” who make dire predictions about imminent catastrophe.
The accusations were made ahead of the 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg taking the Today programme’s guest editor chair on Monday.
Speaking on the programme, Mr Moore said the BBC had become a “secular church” which had “nationalised culture” and needed to be “disestablished”.
“What I am objecting to is preaching,” he said. “The BBC has decided to be a secular church and it preaches and tells us what we ought to think about things. So it tells us we shouldn’t support Brexit and we should accept climate change alarmism and we have to all kowtow to the doctrines of diversity.”
Mr Moore added: “The difficulty I have had trying to get all this stuff about climate change onto this programme, even though I am the guest editor.
“[The] obstacles come in every single time because of rulings and bureaucracy and the fact that Roger Harabin, the environment editor, is so biased.”
Today host, Nick Robinson, defended his colleague Mr Harrabin saying he was “a journalist” who “reports what he thinks is true”.
During the programme, Lord Ridley appeared for the Global Warming Policy Foundation, which describes itself as ‘open-minded on the contested science of global warming’, and argued that climate change could lead to a “range of outcomes”.
He warned the BBC had allowed itself to be “bullied” by climate activists into “dividing [the debate] into goodies who accept climate change and baddies who don’t”.
“You have people who are effectively doomsday cultists now who say we are going to have six billion people dead in a few short decades – that is Roger Hallem of Extinction Rebellion,” added Lord Ridley.
“Or Kevin Anderson, on whom Greta Thunberg relies heavily and he says we are going to see [a] 4C [increase] by 2050.
“No responsible scientist agrees with that, and yet those people are given a hearing on the BBC whereas the luke-warmers are denied a place on the BBC.”