Talk:George Monbiot

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Who wrote this paean to the little git?[edit]

Did he write it himself? It sounds like the ramblings of a huge ego and a pea brain about himself. Oh, and Heat is all but scientifically illiterate. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:51, 12 September 2015 (UTC)

Aristocratic back ground[edit]

Surfing the web I noticed that since Xmas all reference to Monbiot's aristocratic background and Tory family connections has been deleted. Even the sympathetic Sourcewatch site says this: "Monbiot's ancestors, the Ducs de Coutard, fled the French Revolution, and changed their name to Beaumont. Monbiot's parents Raymond and Rosalie were leading members of the Conservative Party in Oxford. He was educated at Stowe, and Brasenose College, Oxford. (Independent, 9 May 1995). He was made a fellow of Green College, by Sir Crispin Tickell."

Any reason for this?

The deletions can be found at

Having looked at the deletions, I'd take a guess that it was because they're POV and incredibly, incredibly long. There probably is a justification for having something on the page about his deeper family background (especially as the main article has a whiff of fandom POV to it), but no more than a paragraph or so.SupernautRemix (talk) 14:33, 3 January 2008 (UTC)

Got to say, the ancestry section is just about the most hilarious thing I've read on wikipedia. Particularly the 'fourth cousin' bit. Almost as funny as Monbiot's beliefs ;) Pete Fenelon (talk) 22:31, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

I'm a fan of Monbiot and I think it's all quite interesting. No contradiction; everybody should know tha tOrwell, Lenin, Marx, were all scions of the upper classes. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:38, 19 December 2009 (UTC)


This article seems to have large chunks lifted from Monbiots website ( However I can't find any indication of copyright on the website, so not sure where we stand. Any thoughts? AndrewMcQ 19:26, 4 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I have written to Monbiot about using stuff from the site, and received the following reply:
David Hi
If the articles are more than a year old go ahead and use them
if they're not you have to clear it with The Guardian. 
The person to contact is: penny dot jones at-sign guardian dot co dot uk.  

Good luck.
Best wishes
Sandy Kennedy
I've obfuscated the address to discourage spammers. — Chameleon 14:57, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)
So we're OK with copyright but how are we with the ethical issues involved in someone effectively writing his own wikipedia entry? Would it not be better to have some independently-written biographical details instead?
Since convention is to take subjects' accounts of their lives at face value unless there is specific reason to believe otherwise, I can't see this raising any ethical issues as long as relevant independently sourced and written details are inserted. FrFintonStack 02:33, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
There's a quality issue here though. It's unusual for an independent biographical article to be based so heavily on the subject's own opinion of himself. A near-verbatim transcript of the subject's autobiography may be OK as a starting point (subject to copyright clearance) but the article is nearly two years old now, and it hasn't developed beyond an "autobiog-by-proxy". The ethical issue is that an autobiography cannot have a neutral point of view, by its very nature. Factoid1000 10:11, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
While I concur with the principle, the problem is that (at cursory examination at least) there seem to be no authoritative critiques of Monbiot's life or work which could be drawn upon to give balance. I'm not a fan of Monbiot, but the rather tedious, heavily-POV trolling that anti-Monbiot editors are using to develop this article, which then gets (rightly) reverted, is probably a large factor in why the article is comparatively unevolved after such a long period. The only edit that could realistically be made to make this article NPOV would be a total redraft in less gushing, more neutral language and potentially links or reference to articles dealing with different perspectives on climate change and other issues that he speaks out on.SupernautRemix (talk) 15:56, 3 January 2008 (UTC)


Although the conribution by (talk · contributions) may be benevolent in intent, we should not forget the previous version, and check to see if nothing has been lost on the way. Shinobu 02:23, 6 Apr 2005 (UTC)

A more free picture[edit]

I replaced the picture by one I took at the make poverty history rally (stop the war stage). It does not require a origin tag and thus seems better. However he is not quite as smiley. --JK the unwise 12:36, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

The presence of an origin tag is neither here nor there. Both pics are under a Creative Commons licence. — Chameleon 08:49, 25 July 2005 (UTC)


Would it not be better to move the reference at the bottom to some kind of "source" section, like with other pages? If we can find the Telegraph article in question, that would also be good.—This unsigned comment is by (talkcontribs) 5 September 2005.

Done, well the moving bit anyway.--JK the unwise 09:47, 15 March 2006 (UTC)


I’ve made an attempt at doing a write up of George Monbiot’s books to date since the main article doesn’t really mention them. I’ve assumed Amazon Watershed and Mahogany Is Murder are the same book with a different title but I’m not certain as I can’t find Mahogany Is Murder in print. Anyone know? --MuttGirl 01:35, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

Niall Ferguson[edit]

The article stated that Monbiot shared rooms with Niall Ferguson while at Brasenose - but Ferguson went to Magdalen, not Brasenose, according to both his wikipedia entry and official website. So I removed the reference to him, but if there's some obscure reason why they did share rooms, feel free to put it back. Imran1985 09:58, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

Rooms is probably the wrong word in this context, but Monbiot wrote that they were "housemates" two years ago. Philip Cross 23:33, 20 August 2006 (UTC)

I agree from the article linked above it seems they shared a house in their 3rd year.

And it is soooooooooooooooooooooooooooo important in an 'encyclopaedia' to mention that these 2 absurd ignoramuses shared a room ... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:54, 12 September 2015 (UTC)


I have deleted "allegedly" from Monbiot's marriage, which, apart from being misspelt, is not in dispute (see: Heartfield01 (talk) 12:21, 4 January 2009 (UTC)

I have removed a sentence stating that Monbiot has argued for a worldwide ban on air travel as I don't believe he has ever argued for that though he has argued that a vast reduction in air travel is neccessary. Correct me if I'm wrong.

I have also removed the sentence "despite his credentials, Monbiot is frequently criticised for insufficient fact-checking and for refusing to acknowledge serious journalistic errors" from his biography. While it's entirely legitimate to include criticism and it's true that Monbiot is often criticised, most major journalists' articles are followed up by letters contesting their facts and I don't see any particular evidence that Monbiot is criticised more than others in this way so I don't see why this should be given a sentence within his biography unless it's included in most other journalists' biographies. A more appropriate way to include criticism might be to include a criticism section with any significant criticisms from prominent figures. I'm happy to discuss this though if anyone thinks I am wrong to delete it.MuttGirl 20:58, 30 September 2006 (UTC)

Good call: a letter to his newspaper pointing out fairly minor factual errors in one of his articles is hardly an appropriate referencing of the above claims (particularly the 'frequently'). If there is a reference to someone making the above allegations, it should be reinstated but in its absence their inclusion comes across as weasel wordsFrFintonStack 18:43, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

No: Poorly referenced material is usually flagged up with a "[citation needed]" reference, to invite further research by contributors. It is not a reason for immediate deletion. Deletion is a last resort, not a first resort. A dispute about the word "frequently" can be addressed by deleting just this word. It is not a reason for a bulk deletion. Wherever possible, deficient content should be improved, not deleted. Factoid1000 11:48, 13 November 2006 (UTC)
Firstly, please see Wikipedia's Biography of Living Persons policy which states, "Controversial material of any kind that is unsourced or poorly sourced must be removed immediately". Secondly, this is not a case of the contributor just neglecting his/her source, where flagging might prompt them or others to provite relevant citations. The source that prompted the claim did not support it, and that undermines its credibility in a more fundamental way, and makes it much more likely that a supporting reference does not exist. Thirdly, it's highly doubtful that a short letter to a newspaper meets Wikipedia's notability criteria. If we were to include everything that had been written about Monbiot, this would be a very long and boring article. Deletion was the correct course in this instance.FrFintonStack 18:36, 16 January 2007 (UTC)


This article reads like a hagiography rather than an encyclopaedia entry. Since Monbiot appears to have inserted the entire thing himself the negative assertions against others should certainly be called "claims" unless sourced -- as with other such negative Wiki content.

Also, no one is "hospitalised" by security guards unless they are moonlighting A&E staff. Colloquially, one could say someone was hospitalised by a broken leg but not by the ski's he was using.HommeVert 17:07, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

There's a discussion regarding you first paragraph further up on this page. Encyclopaedic convention is to take subjects' accounts of their own lives at face value unless there are specific reasons to believe otherwise. The information was not inserted by Monbiot, but some of it was taken from his own site. Again, discussion of that further up. Admittedly, the 'biography' paragraph could do with citing its sources, even if these are Monbiot's own work.

The use of 'hospitalised' in the sense that the actions of said security guards led fairly directly to his admission to hospital, is common, legitimate and widely accepted. FrFintonStack 18:11, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

The "Moonbat" epithet[edit]

This article came to my attention when I noticed that, after three years and about 200 edits, it still closely resembles the subject's autobiography on his own web site. The Wikipedia guidelines (see Wikipedia:Autobiography) discuss the problems with using autobiographical material in a Wikipedia article. Please read these.

The sequence of events in the original removal of the "Moonbat" reference is striking:

The text was vandalised (by author on 16 November 2005, and further vandalised (by author on 17 November 2005. The vandalism was deleted without restoring the original text by author later on 17 November 2005, and the lost text was never restored.

Vandalism should be fixed with a revert to the preceding version. The "vandalism-then-deletion" cycle can result in material being inadvertently removed, and it is sometimes used by unscrupulous authors to mask a deletion.

I restored the vandalised text, which had been present for a significant period of time prior to its accidental deletion. Please read Wikipedia:Editing policy#Major changes, Wikipedia:Etiquette and Wikipedia:Avoiding common mistakes#Deleting... about deletion policy. In general, text should be improved, where content is present. Outright deletion is deprecated. Please avoid perpetual reverts to the subject's autobiography.

The epithet "Moonbat" is in common usage, its use is not a "rumour" - It usage is referenced to an article within Wikipedia itself. It is used pejoratively by conservative commentators to insult liberal thinkers in general, and Monbiot in particular. This may be because of its similarity to Monbiot's name, although the origin of the epithet is disputed. (The disputed origin is certainly not grounds for deletion). Factoid1000 11:02, 13 November 2006 (UTC)

Fair point about deletions. I'm just unsure as to whether the term should be made a 'see also' unless it has particular significance to Monbiot, seeing as the term is only rumoured to be related to his name. Maybe it should be a 'trivia' point instead?

I agree about the biography, I think it really needs to be rewritten though I wouldn't say that that the whole article hasn't progressed from what's on Monbiot's site - all the information on his published works which makes up half the article is new. With the biography, I think its legitimate to have a list of his honoroury professorships and awards he's won and the section on his family has been added by wikipedians. The main issue I have is with it are the two paragraphs about his foreign work and protesting - it's more colourfully written than you'd expect of an enclycopedia. I'm sure we can agree on a way of editing the article that will make it more original/neutral. MuttGirl 12:39, 13 November 2006 (UTC)

"seeing as the term is only rumoured to be related to his name": The term's origins may or may not be linked to Monbiot's surname. The term's current usage is plainly associated with Monbiot, irrespective of its origins. The "See also" section of an article is frequently used to include "lateral" connections. The "See also" section with the "Moonbat" reference was present for much of 2005 without complaint, before being accidentally deleted. There was never a case made for deleting it at the time. Factoid1000 14:14, 13 November 2006 (UTC)

...but I think in 2005 most people genuinely thought it originated from Monbiot's name - the entry on the moonbat page was only updated to say Perry de Havilland denies that origin (he has said that he used it before he knew or met Monbiot) in 2006. But I accept its associated with his name so I don't mind it being mentioned, I just think to make it a prominent feature could be misleading. MuttGirl 19:30, 13 November 2006 (UTC)

I've restored the term as a "Miscellany" item, to address your concern about prominence. There's a slightly longer and fully referenced discussion of the term's use and origin. Factoid1000 10:33, 14 November 2006 (UTC)

"Clinical Death"?[edit]

"He came back to work in Britain after being pronounced clinically dead..." As it stands, this reads as some kind of claim to resurrection - could the original author re-write it and provide a reference please? Factoid1000 12:07, 14 November 2006 (UTC)

"Extreme Left-Wing?"[edit]

Should we really be calling him an "extremist"? It's an inherently subjective analysis; doesn't comply with Wiki's NPOV standards. Taken out, again. If you'd like to change it back, please provide a reason; otherwise, leave it alone. Thesobrietysrule 07:18, 14 December 2006 (UTC)

Agreed. The word has point-of-view connotations. If it is generally agreed that someone is at the far end the political spectrum, it might be appropriate to refer to them as "far left" or "far right" but extreme always has negative connotations. I would use "far left" to refer to the farthest ends of the political spectrum on the left - Marxism and Anarchism, neither of which fits Monbiot's politics so I don't think you need any addition to the word 'leftwing' here. MuttGirl 15:40, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

Anyone who advocates world government is by definition far left. The far left have for more than a century dreamed of a world government run by them. In this world government they will crush all dissent, cancel all INDIVIDUAL freedom and "re-educate" those who oppose them. -- 01:45, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

You can find both far left and far right who'd like world domination - that has very little to do with Monbiot's idea which is for an elected world parliament which would vote on issues of international concern such as international trade argeements, international environmental agreements, international security, etc. There are international bodies such as NATO and the G8 which decide these things already - they're just not democratically elected. Monbiot's proposal would not affect individual countries' right to self government, it would just mean international issues are decided democratically, with the votes portioned out by population, rather than by the status/wealth of the country.MuttGirl 22:39, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Please see Political compass, left and right are fairly certain economic positions. The position your arguing now is authoritarian/libertarian, the other axis in the compass -the stalin/ghandi section. Dmanning 02:44, 17 February 2007 (UTC)

How Green is Green ?[edit]

George Monbiots piece in The Guardian "Channel 4's problem with Science" is shall we say a little removed from his actual beliefs. Back in the late 90's he founded the Land is Ours campaign which occupied land all over the country in protest at it being developed,one in particular being 13 acres of prime land in Wandsworth,London.His "campaigners" occupied this land to stop the Guinness (Diageo)group from selling it,what he fails to state is that rather than his "Eco Village" occupying this site it was turned into a race track.The "Eco Warriors " that took over this site came with tens of vehicles all of which looked like they had come off the set of Mad Max,these were then raced around the entire site day and night.Not only were these vehicles pumping out large volumes of exhaust gases they were also extremely noisy as they had little or no exhaust systems on them.This continued for 6 months.The "Eco Warriors" also emptied large quantities of fuel into the soil,not good when next to River,and left behind old batteries and tyres,which when they were finally evicted they decided to burn.So no CO2 produced there then. Jpnc01 21:17, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Do you have any references or links that support these claims? (talk) 17:07, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Added Synthesis tag (Anthro GW)[edit]

The first paragraph makes a synthesis of two different sources. And the second paragraph seem just to be a POV rendition of an interview. --Kim D. Petersen 17:42, 10 April 2007 (UTC)


Left-wing? This would need sourcing to be replaced. I see no evidence in the article or his writings to confirm this. Neither writing for The Guardian nor his ecological views make him a left-winger, SqueakBox 17:52, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

While we do need to find a source, saying you see no evidence in the man's writings to confirm that he is left wing... that just beggars belief. Joestella 18:01, 14 April 2007 (UTC)
I agree. He was involved in RESPECT until they chose to stand candidates against the Greens. Both parties are left wing by any reasonable definition, and have self-defined this way. I've read two of Monbiot's books; the man is clearly left-wing. A dude, but left-wing! 21:20, 15 April 2007 (UTC)

Climate Change[edit]

Mr Monbiot believes that climate change is caused by man. He has written extensively on the matter. I have put together [below] a short section on solutions Mr Monbiot believes will stop or at least stall climate change, any help or ideas in expanding the section would be appreciated. It keeps his climate change solutions seperate from 'criticism' and allows other users to expand on the section.

      • (Tackling Climate Change)***?

Monbiot believes that drastic action coupled with strong political will is needed to combat global warming, Monbiot states that climate change is the "moral question of the 21st century" and that there is little time for debate or objections to a raft of emergency action he believes will stop climate change, including; setting targets on greenhouse emmisions using the latest science; issuing every citizen with a 'personal carbon ration'; new building regulations with houses built to German Passivhaus standard; banning incandescent lightbulbs, patio heaters, garden floodlights and other unnecessary technologies; constructing large offshore wind farms, replacing the national gas grid with a hydrogen pipe network; a new national coach network to make journeys using public transport faster than using a car; all petrol stations to supply leasable electric car batteries with stations equipped with a crane service to replace depleted batteries; scrap road-building and road-widening programmes, redirect their budgets to tackling climate change; Reduce UK airport capacity; close down all out-of-town superstores. Monbiot believes these goals can be accomplished by 2018. --Dean1970 20:43, 19 April 2007 (UTC) apologies for spelling and grammar this is just talk it can be fixed on the actual article. Thank you.

Seems like a reasonable summary of Monbiots article [1] - except for the timescale - its different for the various actions. Airport capacity to 90% is 2030, coach system is 2020 etc. - loose the timescales - or reword it. --Kim D. Petersen 21:35, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Hagiography II[edit]

This entire entry is hagiography. Very rich, and some postmodern irony taking place here. Nice work Finton and co. Apistogramma 20:54, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

Some caveats added to hagiography and citations requested. Apistogramma 22:00, 26 May 2007 (UTC)


Add section on the exchange with Spiked. Apistogramma 22:00, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

And cut again for not having any reliable sources to back up the section. Please read WP:BLP. --Kim D. Petersen 22:21, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

This [2] needs a subscription service. It does not make it non-RS. I have been informed of that when I disputed a (subscription needed) newsweek source being used on an bio of a living person article some weeks ago.

And yes, it is a critique. Equating flying to genocide, then globe-trotting on a book tour. (currently in USA promoting book, last year Canada...why not kill 2 birds with one stone and use one transatlantic return flight to do one book tour on one continent?) --Dean1970 15:11, 7 July 2007 (UTC) source is reliable!

Do you have a link or reference that shows that Monbiot "equated flying to genocide"? (talk) 17:11, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Critique of Swindle[edit]

Added Monbiot's claim that the two documentaries were not on the same subject. This was the first and most severe criticism he made of the claim that the two documentaries balance each other as can be seen if you read the correspondence.


Monbiot's hypocrisy deserves its own section. It is a fundamental part of who he is (as it is with many - most? all? - high-profile climate campaigners). His excuses for owning a car are (a) that he is too busy to travel by coach (the most eco-friendly form of transport according to his book Heat) and (b) that it's impossible to live in rural Wales without owning a car. So why does he choose to live in rural Wales? So that his daughter can grow up speaking Welsh. Super. He's clearly a thoughtful father. But such personal indulgences, no matter how admirable, don't quite square with his call to cut emissions by 90% - or indeed by 115%, which is what he demanded during a talk at the recent Heathrow Climate Camp (69MB MP3; 115% demand is at about 17m 40s). Monbiot told the anti-flying protesters that the proposals he had set out in Heat had already been superseded and that nothing less than "global revolutionary change" can now save us from disaster - and yet the car-owning Monbiot flew to Canada to publicize his book. Hypocrisy? He was quizzed about this in an interview in Newsweek (April 2007). After claiming that video-conferencing and other advances had rendered flying unnecessary, he was asked if he had given up flying. "The only reason for which I will fly is to campaign on climate change," Monbiot said. "I’ve stopped flying for holidays and for any other business." Is flying to Canada to promote a book on climate change the same as flying to Canada to campaign on climate change? Not in my book, it's not. And anyway, can't he do a virtual book tour using the video-conferencing techniques he recommends for others? The man's a hypocrite. He all but admits it in the Times interview. So let's have a section setting out the arguments for and against (if anyone can find them) his hypocrisy. Vinny Burgoo 15:43, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

The guy owns a Renault Clio, not a Jaguar. Your suggestions would violate NPOV, but if you can find authoritative sources criticising Monbiot those would be admissible if they are not given undue weight. Philip Cross 17:48, 8 September 2007 (UTC)
OK, but I'm going to try to do it as a Quotes section instead. Vinny Burgoo 20:12, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

Someone has now deleted the "Quotes" section, and, whoever they were, they were right to do so. (A misjudgment on my part. What can I say? I was new to Wikipedia and ... No, I wasn't that new.) I still think, however, that Monbiot's hypocrisy needs addressing. He did, after all, write: "Show me an environmentalist, and I will show you a hypocrite." That quote should probably be the starting-point for a whole new article on the (inevitable?) hypocrisy of high-profile climate campaigners. A neutral article, of course. When I've got the time ... Vinny Burgoo 21:35, 6 October 2007 (UTC)

No doubt your article would be recommended for speedy deletion if you did find the time, neutrality would be impossible. Philip Cross 09:33, 7 October 2007 (UTC)
That was me. I thought I'd made a comment here about it actually but it's vanished into the ether somehow.
The problem with your article idea is that it's quite clear that you're barrow-pushing, and Wikipedia (which, keep in mind, is an encyclopedia) isn't the place for that.
Your best bet would be to do add some kind of criticism section along the lines of "some commentators have accused George Monbiot of hypocrisy for the following reasons", but you would need to provide good examples and sources for this. If you're going to do this I would suggest posting your ideas here before putting it on the page, that way we can come up with something that everybody's happy with and doesn't violate NPOV. Alephnaught 23:14, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
I agree with the above sentiment, I think a concise section on this would be sensible and provide some balance to the hagiographic feel to this entry. As a starter for ten (or rather six), how about something like this:
Criticisms of George Monbiot's views
Some commentators have challenged George Monbiot's views. A number of writers (including some scientists) disagree with either the concept, causes or the extent of climate change. (Source: refer to Wiki's Global warming controversy entry).
He has been accused by Christopher (Viscount) Monckton of inaccuracies and indulging in personal attacks (Source: Guardian Response article 16 November 2006). Not sure about this, it's a somewhat localised dispute really, on the other hand it is very much on the record and newsworthy.
Move the Clio here (parking it carefully though!).
Monbiot's book Heat has been criticised for setting out conspiracy theories for "preening sophisticates of a post-industrial Europe" (Source: Telegraph book review 1 October 2006).
His support for reforming the World Trade Organisation into a Fair Trade Organisation has been criticised by some campaigners seeking more radical solutions (Source: Indymedia quote of Green Party official or CPGB article - any better sources?).
Monbiot's opposition to Green organisations working alongside large corporations has led to criticism from Johnathan Porrit that Monbiot has "little respect for the notion of promoting diversity within the Green Movement, and expect[s] everybody instantly to toe [Monbiot's] particular tactical line", plus an occasionally patronising moral superiority (Source: The Ecologist September 2000).
The above needs tidying and ref'd up, which I am happy to do, but equally I would be happy for someone else to take further. I'll look back here in a week or so.Farmer Chrys 11:50, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
Good work, I like that. I don't have anything to add.Alephnaught 14:42, 12 October 2007 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)


What is the origin of his surname? Badagnani 23:44, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

The name is of French origin. About three-quarters of the British population are estimated to be of French Huguenot descent, see Robert Winder's Bloody Foreigners (2004) for confirmation of this. [Edited to take account of material added to the article.] Philip Cross (talk) 22:07, 4 March 2008 (UTC)
According to the discussion above, Monbiot's ancestors the Ducs de Cotard changed their name to Beaumont- I assume that is incorrect and they actually changed their name FROM Beaumont to Montbeau, then to Monbiot? Gustav von Humpelschmumpel (talk) 12:55, 5 March 2008 (UTC)
Apart from George's immediate family I can find record of the name existing. The only names I can find that are similar are Monbeigt, Monniaud, Monnot, Montbriand, Monthioux. Gustav von Humpelschmumpel (talk) 13:17, 5 March 2008 (UTC)
OK, after some petites récherches, I have found that there was a seigneurie de Montbeau associated with the château de Montbeau in the Agenais. It was first held by the de Lavaissière family from c.1220. On the marriage of Isabeau de Lavaissière to Antoine de Montalembert in 1576, it passed to this couples descendents, the comtes (counts) de Montbeau (see this google book link). There is also a Plage de Montbeau in Sainte-Marie-sur-Mer. Gustav von Humpelschmumpel (talk) 00:39, 6 March 2008 (UTC)

... "About three-quarters of the British population are estimated to be of French Huguenot descent" - beyond unhinged. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:00, 12 September 2015 (UTC)


To repeat what others have said above, this article needs critical revision, especially as the subject holds rather extremist views. Peterlewis (talk) 21:46, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

So you add the patently absurd 'Ecofascist' tag? Philip Cross (talk) 21:57, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

I see his disciples push his POV views even on Wiki where we are supposed to be neutral. An encyclopedia should be better than that. He has extreme views and I notice he is taking part in the action at the power station in Kent. Peterlewis (talk) 05:34, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

Yes he does hold radical views, but the Ecofascism label is not the one to apply. Reading that article it can been seen that there are two main uses of the term, firstly for groups aligned with Neo-fascism, and secondly as an Attack Term. Monbiot does not fall in the first, indeed his view have a Social ecology element. Its second meaning as an attack term is countert to WP policies WP:AVOID and WP:NOR. There is a case for some more sourced criticism but it needs to be a bit more informed. --Salix alba (talk) 08:37, 7 August 2008 (UTC)


For some reason you have deleted my information on Monbiot's environmental double standards. As environmental campaigning and reporting is his primary occupation, I believe it is extremely relevant and should therefore stay in. It is well within the guidelines and is all referenced. It has therefore been reinstated.

Re: the deletion (not by me) discussion on Monbiot's "aristocratic" background below, Sourcewatch has merely replicated the unsubstantiated and unreferenced material from here. In my opinion it should go but that's another matter.

Best Ecochamp —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ecochamp (talkcontribs) 28 January 2009

There are numerious problems with your edit. Firstly it has much of it seems to be a direct cut and paste of sentances from [3] and hence a copyright violation. Secondly the tone fall foul of Wikipedia:Biographies of living persons especially Wikipedia:Coatrack.
There are also some problems with citations. Do we have a source for whether he lives with wife or not? --Salix (talk): 10:35, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

Given someone has changed the article putting a comment in the first person and it implies the change on his website it should not have been reverted in the first place! This newspaper article however clarifies things. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Neilj (talkcontribs) 18:23, 3 February 2009 (UTC)


The pejorative political epithet "Moonbat" is often used by various political commentators to mock Monbiot.

This is odd because a Google News archive search produces only 7 search results for "George Monbiot" and "Moonbat". [4] (and 3 of these results appear to be unrelated). Dynablaster (talk) 20:13, 4 March 2009 (UTC)

At the end of 2012 a Google search for George Moonbat gave 672,000 results. Everything on the first page appeared relevant. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:34, 4 December 2012 (UTC)

Public debates[edit]

I've rewritten the section[5] because it didn't really represent what had happened. --TS 05:04, 16 September 2009 (UTC)

Looking at the section more closely, I see that it was created less than two days ago, in a form that severely misrepresented Monbiot's and Plimer's interaction. While the current version is balanced, I think it probably gives undue weight to this interaction in Monbiot's career as a journalist and activist. Indeed it was hard for me to construct a version that wasn't primarily about Plimer's attempt to wrongfoot Monbiot, and even now it is mostly about reactions to Plimer's behavior because that has been the main focus of reporting in reliable sources.
I therefore suggest that the section as a whole is probably out of place in this article because the main focus has been on Plimer while Monbiot's involvement has been somewhat peripheral. The material may fit better on the Plimer article where it goes with comments by eminent scientists about Plimer's polemical style. --TS 11:55, 16 September 2009 (UTC)

It doesn't make any sense to have a section called 'public debates' which just talks about a debate that didn't even happen. Monbiot has been invovled in hundreds of public debates over the years -ones that actually happened. In terms of Monbiot's public showdowns with climate deniers, David Bellamy was a far more significant one- it actually took place on Newsnight. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:49, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

Upper Second[edit]

I realise that ever reliable (ha ha) source the Indy says that Monbiot got an 'Upper Second', but since Oxford didn't introduce Upper and Lower Seconds until 1987 I fail to see how this is possible Hpengwyn (talk) 14:18, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

No date is given for his graduation, but it probably predates 1987 judging by his birthdate. Do you have a source for the introduction of Upper/Lower? If so we can try and follow it up. Rd232 talk 15:31, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

See (search for 1987) Hpengwyn (talk) 23:02, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

Article probation[edit]

Please note that, by a decision of the Wikipedia community, this article and others relating to climate change (broadly construed) has been placed under article probation. Editors making disruptive edits may be blocked temporarily from editing the encyclopedia, or subject to other administrative remedies, according to standards that may be higher than elsewhere on Wikipedia. Please see Wikipedia:General sanctions/Climate change probation for full information and to review the decision. -- ChrisO (talk) 13:40, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Clash with Richard North regarding Impact of reduced Amazon rainfall in IPCC report[edit]

Monbiot has been engaged in debate with inter alia Dr. Richard North regarding an allegedly unsourced claim regarding impact of reduced rainfall in IPCC AR4. The clash has lead the Guardian to allow a reply piece by North. Should this be added to the article? Slowjoe17 (talk) 02:27, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

View on CRU email Controversy[edit]

Should this page include Monbiot's views on Climategate? He was one of the earliest commentators (see, and notably called for the resignation of Prof Phil Jones.

If it isn't a BLP breach, both this and any further statements he's made are probably notable in the context of Monbiot himself. Slowjoe17 (talk) 02:33, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

I don't see how it is notable in the context of Monbiot, and considering that Monbiot apologized later, i fail to see the interest. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 14:49, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
I had added a stub entry into the article related to this, but I've removed it now so as not to pre-empt this discussion. However, I feel that the call for Jones' head by Monbiot in a national newspaper is undoubtedly notable, both in the context of Monbiot's career, and for the controversy itself. His comment came within a week of the data release, at a time when the official response had hardly formed. His comment was of the "man bites dog" variety, since it defied expectations, and came from one of the leading environmental campaigners in the country. If he has changed his views, then that change itself is also notable IMO. Again, I welcome other input from other editors. Slowjoe17 (talk) 19:29, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
I think we should judge by the standard WP:Notability criterion: was there significant coverage of Monbiot's comments in independent reliable sources (e.g. a different newspaper)? Qwfp (talk) 19:38, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
BBC [6] The Mail [7] Scoop from New Zealand [8] New Zealand Herald [9] so i`d say yes it made news mark nutley (talk) 20:03, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
I would think that all 4 articles point towards notability. However, from an RS pov, is there agreement that the BBC/Harrabin article is allowable? Daily Mail article looks good. Regarding the third article, it is marked as being a (New Zealand?) Science Media Centre press release, so I would anticipate there is a possible RS issue there also. The NZ Herald article looks good also. Slowjoe17 (talk) 21:11, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Never heard of the snoop one myself it came up on google news. the BBC is however a reliable source mark nutley (talk) 21:17, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Ok, I'm convinced that there are enough independent reliable sources to justify a short section on this. Perhaps the only question is whether it should be in this article or in Climatic Research Unit email controversy (in which case that would be mentioned in and linked from this article). Qwfp (talk) 22:11, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Thanks Qwfp. Before we move forward on this, does anyone else have any views? Two questions are notability and whether the call for resignation (and follow-ups) should be included here or Climatic Research Unit email controversy? Slowjoe17 (talk) 22:33, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Two things: Considering how often Monbiot is cited in general, how often was this particular one cited? Lets get some proportions on the table - if this is notable in a Monbiot context, then that question needs to be answered (weight and notability). Second, if it really does have weight, then since Moniot has basically retracted his critique and apologized for jumping the ship - what would be the take on this? Ie. what would be the focus? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 23:02, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Climatic Research Unit email controversy is a significant issue in Monbiot's career now. He is chairing panels dealing with it. I would be proposing straight reporting of the facts in sequence as sourced in RS and his columns, hopefully with concensus reached here first. I would have thought the fact that one of the highest-profile environmental writers in the world has held two dramaticly different opinions on an emotive and controversial issue is notable. The change is important to provide encyclopedic coverage.
As to weight, I'd initially propose placing it as a new paragraph under the Climate Change subheading. Slowjoe17 (talk) 23:41, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
If Monbiot is chairing panels - then that would probably be notable - why not start by describing these? (i haven't heard). We would need secondary sourcing of the "two dramaticly different" and "highest-profile" things. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 23:51, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
To give a rule-of-thumb idea of how frequently this is cited, Google return 25,000 hits for "Monbiot climategate resignation". Of course, this is somewhat less than reliable, but indicative. Slowjoe17 (talk) 23:43, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Nah - it is extremely far from reliable... and not indicative at all - since what you measure is the blogosphere echo-chamber. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 23:48, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Nuclear power[edit]

Might want to add that since fukushima Monbiot has come out in favour of nuclear power in several articles recently published by the guardian —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:39, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

It's already been documented in this section of the article. Mentioning it more prominently would run into problems with WP:UNDUE and WP:RECENTISM. Sailsbystars (talk) 16:34, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

Private life[edit]

I have read online that Angharad Penrhyn Jones and Monbiot have split up, but confirmation is currently elusive. This point has been the source of a small edit war for several years. It would be better to remove his (former) wife's name to avoid spreading (probably) false information, and causing possible embarrassment to the individuals involved, until the relevant details of Monbiot's private life can be found in a reliable source. Philip Cross (talk) 10:58, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

I had all the info in there, with sufficient references, and it has all been removed. They live apart and you can even see their two houses on Google Maps!! I also got confirmation of the split from a local resident. More interesting is if he had a second daughter in 2012, who was it with? Also his own Register of Interests says his house was for sale in 2011. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:44, 18 August 2012 (UTC)

Private life should be just that; I think the split should be taken into account, but speculation about his daughter strikes me as distasteful. PJTraill (talk) 22:41, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

Gavin Schmidt is a reliable source[edit]

Once again I am removing the (rs) tag questioning the RealClimate blog as a reliable source. The author of the entry in question was Gavin Schmidt, one of the world's leading climate scientists, with dozens of publications. He received the first Climate Communications Prize from the American Geophysical Union for his work on communicating climate-change issues to the public. According to Wikipedia policy at WP:IRS, "Reliable sources may be published materials with a reliable publication process, authors who are regarded as authoritative in relation to the subject, or both." Gavin Schmidt is clearly an authoritative author in this field, and clearly competent to answer Plimer's questions. Therefore, the (rs) objection fails. Nor is the BLP objection valid, since Schmidt's answers address only the scientific content of the questions, without commenting on Mobbiot.
If this revision is reverted again, I will expand the article to show why Schmidt is a reliable source and add material to show how Plimer's questions are unscientific obfucation. I don't want to do that. As others have said, if this debate is discussed in detail it should be in the article on Plimer. But if necessary I will do it, because questioning the reliability of Gavin Schmidt is clearly unwarranted. Margin1522 (talk) 17:47, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

Please see WP:BLP. Assuming Monbiot is still living, the blog is not a reliable source for the assertion that Monbiot said that he (Monbiot) couldn't answer Pilmer's questions. Schmidt's implication that Pilmer is either dissembling or incompetent has no place in any Wikipedia article, but, it quite properly, isn't in this one. This has nothing to do as to whether Schmidt would be a reliable source if there weren't assertions about Monbiot in the sentence. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 18:12, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
Very well, I have modified the article to make it clear that Monbiot himself wrote that "I am unqualified to answer them." So now we have Monbiot himself on his qualifications, and Schmidt on the scientific content of the questions. Monbiot is a reliable source on his own qualifications, and Schmidt is a reliable source on the science. There are no unreliable sources here, so I removed the unreliable tag again. Margin1522 (talk) 18:34, 30 June 2012 (UTC)


Could we have an IPA in the lead please? Is it Mon-bee-ott or Mon-bee-oh? I hear both from time to time, although I always thought it was the French pronunciation! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:00, 21 February 2013 (UTC)

In England it is generally pronounced Mon-by-oh. I don't know how to render this in the international phonetic alphabet (IPA). Bronxrichie (talk) 12:31, 9 August 2014 (UTC)Bronxrichie

I've only ever heard Mon-bee-oh (with the accent on the Mon). I just checked the first page of a Google videos search for his name, and in the only two videos where someone says his name near the start they pronounce it that way: Youtube, BBC, at 50 seconds in. Qwfp (talk) 17:28, 9 August 2014 (UTC)

Place of Birth[edit]

I was born in St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington (not Kensington). George Monbiot. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:50, 2 April 2013 (UTC)

In 1963 St Mary's Hospital was in the (London) Metropolitan Borough of Paddington. This borough was put into the City of Westminster in 1965. Possibly the birth was registered as having taken place in Kensington, but the information linked to on link is behind a paywall. Bronxrichie (talk) 12:25, 9 August 2014 (UTC)Bronxrichie

Facilitating Child Abuse Accusations[edit]

Strange that there isn't a mention here of the whole Lord McAlpine case, especially so considering Mobiot refers to it himself on his own website, the author goes on to state that McAlpine's method of recompense was 'unprecedented'. Twobells (talk) 12:25, 18 January 2014 (UTC)

Suppression of references in TTIP to Monbiot’s criticism[edit]

In the article Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership some people have tried to refer to criticism by Monbiot in the Guardian, and one User:Bobrayner has been removing them in what seems to be a pretty one-sided manner, e.g. [10]. Perhaps editors here might be able to help produce a suitable Criticism section in that article. PJTraill (talk) 22:36, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

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COI Edit Request[edit]

Edit request

Hello editors, I’ve made an edit request, declaring a COI and am awaiting results. I’m working for George on a temporary basis, and I want to update this entry.

Requested edits:

In the ‘Career’ section, delete fourth para (‘Among his best-known articles…Bob Geldof and Bono’) and insert

‘Monbiot began writing for the Guardian in 1996. He may be the first journalist worldwide to fully reference his columns, having done so since 2003. Among his best-known articles are:

A long read about the wide-ranging impacts of neoliberalism:

About the “corporate misinformation machine” that supplied many of Donald Trump’s staffers:

About the global crisis of soil loss:

About the psychological and physical impacts of the “age of loneliness”:

He appears to have been:

the first journalist to have raised concerns about the environmental impacts of biofuels, in 2004:

the first to propose leaving fossil fuels in the ground to prevent climate change, in 2007:

and the first in the national press to have exposed the letter sent by David Cameron, revealing the prime minister’s naivety about the impact of his government’s cuts:

His article in 2014 about the public subsidies and farm policies that exacerbate flooding triggered a major national debate, that continues to this day:

He gave a Ted talk in July 2013:

An extract from the talk, called How Wolves Change Rivers, set to pictures and music by the Sustainable Human group, has been watched 28 million times:

Monbiot made a second video with Sustainable Human, called How Whales Change Climate (January 2015):

In 2016, he revealed that he had converted to veganism a year earlier:'

I’d like the article to then continue with existing fifth para, beginning ‘In January 2011’.

At the end of the ‘Career’ section, I’d like to insert:


In October 2016, George Monbiot released his first album, Breaking the Spell of Loneliness (, written with the musician Ewan McLennan. Monbiot wrote the first draft of the lyrics, McLennan refined them and wrote the music. This is a concept album on the theme of loneliness and how it might be addressed.

It arose from an article Monbiot wrote in the Guardian (The age of loneliness is killing us) ( . The article went viral, but instead of accepting offers from publishers to write a book about it, Monbiot wanted to do something that had the potential to bring people together. He approached McLennan with the idea (

The album has been well-reviewed (, earning four stars in the Guardian (, Songlines and R2 magazine, and five stars in EDS magazine.

Monbiot and McLennan have been touring the album around Britain ( – Monbiot discusses the themes and McLennan plays and sings the songs. The performances are designed to create social connections: the audience is encouraged to meet each other and continue the evening in a nearby pub.'

Thanks in advance for any help with this. I’m looking for sources to reference the reviews in Songlines, R2 and EDS magazine, as I'm aware they're not cited.

Rowan Cairns (talk) 14:38, 6 April 2017 (UTC) Rowan Cairns (talk) 20:46, 6 April 2017 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Rowan Cairns (talkcontribs) Rowan Cairns (talk) 09:40, 13 April 2017 (UTC)

Note that this edit request is a duplicate proposal of the request that has been reviewed and declined by me. Read discussion here. Regards, VB00 (talk) 12:30, 15 June 2017 (UTC)

Edit request refused[edit]

Hi all,

I'd really appreciate some help.

I can't understand why the requested edits - which I'd set out on my own page, and on George Monbiot's - have been refused. I really do need this to be explained in very simple terms. I'm absolutely doing my best to follow guidelines and protocols but am frankly finding it baffling.

I understand that I'm doing this with a COI, but have declared that from the outset.

Please would you explain how I need to make the request, and what the problem was with the edits? One issue that I'm very unsure about is what references / citations I could provide. Although George has written a great deal, there are no biographies that I can draw on.

Thanks for your time on this,

Rowan Cairns (talk) 10:35, 15 June 2017 (UTC)

Note the starting discussion on Rowan Cairns's talkpage. Let's try and keep the discussion in one place to avoid people repeating the same things over and over, and instead looking at the various aspects that may have been missed in my reply or someone else's. Regards, VB00 (talk) 12:34, 15 June 2017 (UTC)

recent edit[edit]

Hi all,

Thanks for all help above - the entry is definitely looking better with help from those who know what they're doing - I'm still finding my way.

Changes made in my most recent edit are as follows.

I've added the fact that George co-wrote and toured 'Breaking the Spell of Loneliness' to the intro para, as it's evidence of a diversification from his journalism and writing.

I've replaced some of the previously described as best-known articles for more current ones which have had a far higher profile:so I've replaced the paragraph

Among his best-known articles are his critique of David Bellamy's climate science,[21] his description of an encounter with a police torturer in Brazil,[22] his attack on libertarian interpretations of genetics,[23] his discussion of the ethics of outsourcing,[24] and his attack on the politics of Bob Geldof and Bono.[25]

I've corrected factual errors - George was at Elstree when he read Bettina Erlich's book (not at Stowe as in previous entry); he had moved to Oxford by 2012 (not 2013), and the nation of West Papua is annexed by, rather than a part of, Indonesia. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Rowan Cairns (talkcontribs) 13:42, 7 July 2017 (UTC)

Recent edits[edit]

Hi all,

Thanks for all the help with this – the entry definitely looks better with input from those who know what they’re doing – I’m still finding my way.

My most recent edit is as follows. I’ve added the fact that George co-wrote and toured ‘Breaking the Spell of Loneliness’ to the first para as it demonstrates a different aspect of his career in writing and journalism.

I’ve substituted some of the articles that were referred to as well-known, with some that are more recent, and are far more high-profile than those previously mentioned, so that the paragraph ‘Among his best-known articles are his critique of David Bellamy's climate science,[21] his description of an encounter with a police torturer in Brazil,[22] his attack on libertarian interpretations of genetics,[23] his discussion of the ethics of outsourcing,[24] and his attack on the politics of Bob Geldof and Bono.[25]’

currently reads Among his best-known articles are his critique of David Bellamy's climate science,[22] his description of an encounter with a police torturer in Brazil,[23] his explanation of why dangerous floods occur,[24] his column on the devastating impacts of loneliness,[25] his argument that the loss of soil is perhaps the greatest environmental crisis of all,[26] his explanation of neoliberalism,[27] and his description of the dark money networks in the Trump administration[28].

I’ve added the sentence ‘Monbiot has stated that he limits his flying to once every three years.’ to the end of the third para in Climate Change to balance the possible implication that he flies frequently.

Finally, I’ve corrected factual errors: George read Bettina Erlich’s book while at Elstree (not Stowe, as previously); he had returned to Oxford by 2012 (not 2013); West Papua is a nation annexed by Indonesia, rather than a part of it.

I’m going to change the main photograph once I’ve spoken with the photographer who took it, as the current photograph is around 20 years old.

Thanks for all input. Rowan Cairns (talk) 14:04, 7 July 2017 (UTC)

apols - forgot to sign section 42[edit]

Rowan Cairns (talk) 14:34, 7 July 2017 (UTC)

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