Journalist, Author and possess a zoology doctorate on sexual selection in pheasants.
From his Wikipedia entry
Views on climate change
Ridley has expressed strong criticism of the science of climate change and its conclusions. In October 2011, invited for the Angus Millar Lecture of the Royal Society of the Arts Edinburgh, he said “Stalagmites, tree lines and ice cores all confirm that it was significantly warmer 7000 years ago. Evidence from Greenland suggests that the Arctic ocean was probably ice free for part of the late summer at that time. Sea level is rising at the unthreatening rate about a foot per century and decelerating. Greenland is losing ice at the rate of about 150 gigatonnes a year, which is 0.6% per century. There has been no significant warming in Antarctica, with the exception of the peninsula. Methane has largely stopped increasing. Tropical storm intensity and frequency have gone down, not up, in the last 20 years. Your probability of dying as a result of a drought, a flood or a storm is 98% lower globally than it was in the 1920s. Malaria has retreated not expanded as the world has warmed. And so on. I’ve looked and looked but I cannot find one piece of data – as opposed to a model – that shows either unprecedented change or change is that is anywhere close to causing real harm….”.
On the climate debate he added: “I see confirmation bias everywhere in the climate debate. Hurricane Katrina, Mount Kilimanjaro, the extinction of golden toads – all cited wrongly as evidence of climate change. A snowy December, the BBC lectures us, is ‘just weather’; a flood in Pakistan or a drought in Texas is ‘the sort of weather we can expect more of’. A theory so flexible it can rationalize any outcome is a pseudoscientific theory.”
Author of popular Rational Optimist the New Scientist gave his work to a handful of specialists. According to them, the author “completely ignores the mainstream scientific literature”, “has a very poor understanding of the core issues”, and “introduces confusion”. He “cherry-picked evidence to form opinions which are unsupported by the bulk of scientific evidence”. His work was “misleading”, and an “ideological account”.
His politics is right-wing/libertarian fits with denier belief that AGW is some kind of political tool although like his proclaimed MMCC lukewarm-ness he says otherwise-
I am a social and economic liberal: I believe that economic liberty leads to greater opportunities for the poor to become less poor, which is why I am in favour of it. Market liberalism and social liberalism go hand in hand in my view.
Matt Ridley comes across as more kindly, intelligent and informed climate change denier when compared to his ‘batshit’ contemporaries but stills draws from the same well. A lukewarmer in the sense that a warmer planet is nothing to worry about.