‘The Mail on Sunday’ newspaper has today (22 April 2018) published a statement in its print edition admitting that two articles about climate change it published in February 2017 were fake news.

The newspaper had been forced in September 2017 to publish a lengthy adjudication from the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) acknowledging that an article by its reporter David Rose, published on 5 February 2017, was inaccurate and misleading.

The article made a series of erroneous allegations about a study by scientists at the United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration which showed that the so-called ‘hiatus’ in global warming never occurred.

However, the newspaper has today conceded that two further follow-up articles by Mr Rose, published on 12 and 19 February 2017, were also wrong because they repeated many of the false claims that appeared in the original story on 5 February 2017.

The correction, published on page 2 of today’s print edition of ‘The Mail on Sunday’, states:

“In September, 2017, the Independent Press Standards Organisation upheld a complaint against a February 5 article ‘Exposed: How world leaders were duped over global warming.’ Two subsequent articles on February 12 and February 19 contained claims regarding an influential study about global warming, which have been found to be in breach of the Editors’ Code: namely the claim that the study was known- irrefutably and as fact – to be critically flawed, based on misleading unverified data, and had led world leaders to be duped by its findings. Corrections to these articles have been published online.”

The newspaper issued the correction following a complaint to IPSO by Bob Ward, the policy and communications director at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment and the ESRC Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy. Mr Ward also submitted the complaint to IPSO about the article on 5 February 2017.

Mr Ward said: “I had to complain because the newspaper did not immediately correct the follow-up articles. ‘The Mail on Sunday’, and Mr Rose in particular, have a long track record of misleading its readers over climate change and other issues. The newspaper has been forced to admit over the past year that five articles by Mr Rose were inaccurate and misleading, with IPSO adjudications published on 6 August, 17 September and 24 September 2017. I hope that IPSO will now launch a standards investigation into ‘The Mail on Sunday’ for these serious and systemic breaches of the Editors’ Code of Practice.”


To arrange an interview with the authors of the report or more information about this media release please contact Victoria Druce on +44 (0) 207 107 5865 or v.druce@lse.ac.ukor Bob Ward on +44 (0) 7811 320346 or r.e.ward@lse.ac.uk



  1. The Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment (https://www.lse.ac.uk/grantham) was launched at the London School of Economics and Political Science in October 2008. It is funded by The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment (https://www.granthamfoundation.org/).
  2. The ESRC Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy (https://www.cccep.ac.uk/) is hosted by the University of Leeds and the London School of Economics and Political Science. It is funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (https://www.esrc.ac.uk/). The Centre’s mission is to advance public and private action on climate change through rigorous, innovative research.
Keep in touch with the Grantham Research Institute at LSE
Sign up to our newsletters and get the latest analysis, research, commentary and details of upcoming events.