David Frost

Credentials

Background

David Frost has been a Conservative member of the House of Lords since 2020. He served as Boris Johnson’s Chief Brexit Negotiator in 2021 and Minister of State at the Cabinet Office from March to December 2021, following a career as a civil servant and diplomat.2The RT Hn Lord Frost CMG,” Gov.uk. Archived April 6, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/VBCc3

Frost will be appointed to the House of Lords select committee on environment and climate change in February 2024, according to the Guardian.3Ben Quinn. “Peer who praised rising temperatures appointed to climate crisis committee,” The Guardian, January 22, 2024. Archived January 22, 2024. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/6byUu

Frost has been a board trustee of the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), the UK’s most prominent climate science denial group, since November 2022, joining the organisation during COP27.4DeBunked: Lord Frost on the Global Warming Policy Foundation,” DeSmog, November 9, 2022. Archived March 24, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/rItW1 The GWPF was founded by former Conservative chancellor Nigel Lawson and is part of the Tufton Street network of free market think tanks centred at 55 Tufton Street

Frost has been a vocal denier of climate science and critic of the government’s net zero plans. In May 2022, he said there was “no evidence” that we are living in a climate emergency, adding that the government’s target to be net zero by 2050 “obviously makes no sense as a policy.”5Saphora Smith. “‘No evidence’ to support claim we’re in climate emergency, ex-minister Lord Frost claims,” The Independent, August 9, 2022. Archived August 10, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/E6QgX

In February 2022, Frost signed a letter alongside members of the Net Zero Scrutiny Group (NZSG), a group of anti-net zero, predominantly Conservative MPs, calling on the government to lift the ban on fracking for shale gas,6Adam Barnett and Michaela Hermann. “Mapped: How the Net Zero Backlash is Tied to Climate Denial – and Brexit,” DeSmog, March 18, 2022. Archived March 30, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/Pvjuw claiming that this would bring about a “British energy renaissance.”7Edward Malnick. “Tory grandees urge Boris Johnson to lift ‘unconservative’ ban on fracking,” The Telegraph, February 12, 2022. Archived February 12, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/JsAdK

Frost is also a senior fellow of Policy Exchange, a right-wing think tank.8Advice letter: Lord Frost, Senior Fellow, Policy Exchange,” GOV.uk, November 30, 2022. Archived May 9, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/Ek4lY

Frost is a Eurosceptic and was instrumental in shaping the UK’s exit agreement with the EU as Chief Brexit Negotiator. He resigned from the Cabinet Office in December 2021, citing disagreements with the policy direction of Boris Johnson’s government.9Laura Hughes, Peter Foster, Jude Webber and Andy Bounds. “Brexit minister Lord Frost quits UK cabinet,Financial Times, December 18, 2021. Archived December 18, 2021. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/saLlT

In May 2023, Frost announced his intention to run as an MP and relinquish his peerage.10Aletha Adu. “Lord Frost confirms bid to become a Tory MP,” The Guardian, May 14, 2023. Archived May 14, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/FMWRV

Stance on Climate Change

July 24, 2023

In a debate in the House of Lords, Frost said that rising global temperatures due to climate change were “likely to be beneficial” in the UK, because it would mean fewer people would die from cold temperatures.11Kevin Schofield. “Tory Peer Says Global Warming Is ‘Likely To Be Beneficial’ To The UK,” HuffPost, July 25, 2023. Archived August 23, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/MvcC9

Frost said: “At the moment, seven times as many people die from cold as from heat in Britain. Rising temperatures are likely to be beneficial.”12“David Frost, “Rising temperatures (from climate change) are likely to be beneficial.. We can adjust to the perfectly manageable consequences of slowly rising temperatures.”Frost also says the cost to mitigate climate change is 1-2% of GDP. Brexit now costs the UK 5.5% of GDP. So if we rejoin the EU, we can spend that extra on helping save the planet. Win-win.,” tweet from user @implausibleblog, July 24, 2023. Retrieved from twitter.com. Archived November 17, 2023. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.

Frost also said that the UK should “spend the reasonable sums that we need to on adaptation so we can adjust to the perfectly manageable consequences of slowly rising temperatures as they emerge”.

May 25, 2023

Writing in the Telegraph, Frost characterised net zero policies as being “riddled with economic fallacies” and “misplaced confidence,” and argued that politicians promoting net zero were therefore treating people “like idiots.”13David Frost. “Net zero zealots are treating the public like fools,” The Telegraph, May 25, 2023. Archived May 25, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/sVgvr

He also said he doubted the severity of predictions over climate change: 

“By all means accept the scientific consensus: it doesn’t seem to me to depict ‘climate catastrophe’. But net zero 2050 isn’t science. It’s a political goal enshrining a particular view of the trade-offs facing us as a result of climate change.” 

Frost also criticised low carbon technologies: 

“You will be forced to buy ineffective boilers and expensive electric cars. That’s why you’re made to pay for windmills, a technology that was cutting-edge just after the Norman Conquest.” 

He also argued that the debate around net zero was characterised by “smear and cancellation.” 

August 9, 2022

In a paper published by Policy Exchange, an influential right-wing think tank,14William Booth. “The 5 countries where people click most on ISIS propaganda (and the U.S. is No. 2),” Washington Post, September 19, 2017. Archived September 17, 2019. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/RkGTc Frost described wind turbines as “medieval technology” and said there was “no evidence” that we are in a climate emergency.

He also called for a shift away from renewables towards shale gas extraction and carbon capture and storage (CCS), writing:15Saphora Smith. “‘No evidence’ to support claim we’re in climate emergency, ex-minister Lord Frost claims,” The Independent, August 9, 2022. Archived August 10, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/E6QgX

“Instead of focusing on technological solutions that enable us to master our environment and get more energy in a more carbon-efficient way – nuclear, CCS, fracking, one-day fusion – we have focused on managing demand so we can use medieval technology like wind power.”

May 19, 2022

In an exclusive interview for the Express, Frost criticised government net zero policy and “ideology”, writing that renewables are “poor technology” and that it is “total fallacy” to rely on renewables for energy security. 

He argued against decarbonizing the UK’s energy supply to improve energy security, saying:

“As a country, we’re [responsible for] about two per cent of global emissions. We could shut down the British economy tomorrow and it would make no difference to the nature of the problem […] It makes no sense in a world that’s got more dangerous.”

Frost also voiced support for fracking in the UK: “We have so much shale gas in this country that we could be tapping. A shale gas facility that’s about the size of Parliament Square can produce the same amount of power as a wind farm 10 times the size of Hyde Park.”16Tim Newark. “Lord Frost warns: Hurtling towards net zero at any cost will be a mistake,” Express, May 19, 2022. Archived 31 May, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/E58JB

Key Quotes

May 29, 2023 

In response to the Labour Party’s announcement that it would ban new oil & gas extraction in the North Sea and decarbonise the UK’s electricity grid by 2030, Frost tweeted that this was a “laughable policy” based on the “worst kind of fantasy policy-making” which “could only end in economic and social disaster for the country.”17David Frost. “The policy of @UKLabour to ban new oil & gas exploration and decarbonise the grid by 2030 is the worst kind of fantasy policy-making. Any serious attempt to do these things could only end in economic & social disaster for the country,” Tweet by @DavidGHFrost, May 29, 2023. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived May 31, 2023. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

May 25, 2023 

Frost delivered the GWPF 2023 annual lecture, in which he called for a “rethink of net zero methods […] and timetable,” and characterised the UK’s net zero target as “inevitably wasteful and damaging” due to “completely incompatible political and economic objectives.”18Lord Frost delivers the 2023 Annual GWPF Lecture,” Global Warming Policy Foundation, May 25, 2023. Archived May 25, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/l2hLW

During the speech Frost cast doubt on the threat posed by climate change, arguing that while climate change is “one of the many” problems in society, “it is not existential and it doesn’t mean extinction is coming.”

Frost voiced support for efforts to expand UK fossil fuel production, saying: 

“We must welcome the Government’s seeming willingness to push gently against the net zero ideology, for example with the proposed Cumbrian coal mine, [and] the opening of new areas for exploration in the North Sea.”

He also claimed that low carbon technology would lower the quality of life for people in Britain, telling the audience: 

“In Britain we will soon be making people buy inferior and more expensive boiler technology and driving many out of the new car market if they aren’t prepared to take a punt on electric vehicles.”

Frost argued that a “collectivist intellectual climate” had given rise to net zero policies, and that “governments claim net zero policies will boost growth, but in fact they will reduce it.”

He also argued for a substantially pro-gas, anti-renewable policy agenda:

“We should keep underlining that there is not just a problem, there is a solution. That is gas to nuclear, backed with investment in fundamental research, and taking advantage of technological advances […] we may therefore need to be more dismissive of current renewable technology as an unnecessary complication.” 

May 21, 2023

Frost retweeted an image from Reasoned, an “online video platform and campaign” which “challenges the pervasive left-wing bias in online content” founded by GB News presenter Darren Grimes in 2020, in which Frost is quoted saying:

“We are replacing a lot of perfectly good ways of generating electricity with gas and nuclear ways of generating it with wind and solar.”19Reasoned. “Bad – and expensive for the average Briton,” Tweet by @ReasonedUK, May 21, 2023. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived June 2, 2023. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

May 19, 2023 

Frost shared a link to a Telegraph story titled “Europe is beginning to turn against the prophets of climate alarmism” on Twitter, and wrote that European “climate alarmism” was akin to “miserablism,” instead calling for more “optimism” in climate discourse.20David Frost. “”Europe turning against prophets of climate alarmism” Powerful piece from @FraserNelson in @Telegraph setting out why things are getting better for humanity. Optimism not miserabilism is the way forward,” Tweet by @DavidGHFrost, April 3, 2023. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived June 2, 2023. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

May 12, 2023 

In a podcast interview published by CapX, a media site run by the Centre for Policy Studies, a free market think tank based at 57 Tufton Street, Frost claimed that UK climate policy was “statist” and based on an “extremely collectivist political framework,” arguing instead for a market-based approach.

Frost argued that the pace of the net zero transition was too rapid given available technologies and would cause energy security problems for Britain. 

He said: 

“I actually think climate policy, in the way we’ve got it, is a big part of the problem: the constant hectoring of people to change their lifestyles and live in a particular way. The idea that the net zero target can only be reached through very strong state intervention to reach particular goals and that the market won’t do the job, the market is part of the problem.”21John Ashmore. “The CapX Podcast: Lord Frost on the state of Brexit Britain,” CapX, 12 May, 2023. Archived May 12, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/phoP2

April 6, 2023

Writing in the Telegraph, Frost said it was an “irrational, fantasy policy” to “solve the so-called ‘climate crisis’” by “[insulating] every building in Britain.” He used this idea as proof that “the new elite doesn’t live in the real world.”22David Frost. “Britain’s new elite doesn’t live in the real world,” The Telegraph, April 6, 2023. Archived April 6, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/TKhtD 

April 3, 2023

In the wake of the death of Nigel Lawson, the founder of the GWPF, Frost tweeted praise for Lawson’s “reasoned approach to climate change.”David Frost.23Very sorry to hear this evening of the sad death of Nigel Lawson. A true economic radical, a supporter of Brexit, an early advocate of a more reasoned approach to climate change – and the author of simply one of the best political memoirs ever,” Tweet by @DavidGHFrost, April 3, 2023. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived June 2, 2023. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

May 19, 2022

On a podcast hosted by climate science denier Brendan O’Neill and published by the anti-green platform Spiked, Frost criticised scientific predictions about the severity of climate change and the need to take corresponding action, saying: “I’m not 100 percent convinced we’re in a climate crisis catastrophe.” He argued that climate action would be too costly and damaging to Britain to be worth taking before 2050. 

Frost said:

“Obviously CO2 in the atmosphere has an impact on global temperature. The question is how much, how quickly, whether the feedback loops are quite what people say they are. […] I think probably decarbonisation over time is worth doing for all kinds of reasons, but I’m not convinced that it’s essential at the expense of all other goals to reach net zero in 2050, and you know of course it’s only Europe and the US that has set that goal, other countries around the world have set more relaxed goals than that.” 

Frost also claimed that “current [net zero] policy can’t be delivered with the available technology,” and that “meanwhile the collateral damage of this in terms of the cost of technology that doesn’t work particularly well being imposed on people is great.” 

He continued: 

“I think if it can’t be done with technology, the only route, if you’re insistent on the goals, is rationing and demand control and I think we risk going down that road. In fact we already see some signs of it. I don’t think people will want to do that. And so we’re heading for a crunch and a crisis.”

Frost also argued that prioritising decarbonisation would mean that “we’ll simply be overtaken by societies that prioritise other things and I don’t think we can afford to be in that position.” 

Frost also suggested that COVID-19 lockdowns were enabled by “climate ideology,” which “is already encouraging people to stay at home, live local, don’t travel, don’t do this, don’t do that.”24“What Brexit Means,” Spiked, May 19, 2022. Archived May 19, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/wip/mbT6A

April 29, 2022

In a piece published in the Telegraph, Frost argued that Britain was being “overwhelmed” by “climate collectivism”. Writing about efforts to reduce emissions, Frost added that “it is time to put an end to these habits.” 

He labelled electric cars “unsatisfactory” and said government efforts to support the rollout of low-carbon measures amounted to being “hectored about the moral aspects of virtually every choice in our everyday life.”

Frost also argued the underlying driver of this “collectivism” was “socialist economics and green politics.”25David Frost. “Britain is being overwhelmed by a rising tide of statism, entitlement and dependency,” The Telegraph, April 29, 2022. Archived April 29, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/i1b5y

February 11, 2022

Frost appeared on the Faith and Current Affairs podcast in which he argued that governments were unthinkingly pro-net zero because “the path of least resistance is to go along with climate policy” due to a “a very strong globalist current in the world that is around COP26.”26Lord Frost: Covid, Net-Zero, Brexit, Identity Politics, Free Speech and More!,” YouTube video uploaded by user Irreverend: Faith and Current Affairs on February 11, 2022. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.

January 13, 2022 

In an interview published in the Telegraph, Frost argued that the UK government’s net zero targets were too ambitious, adding: “I think climate change is a significant problem. I just don’t think it’s necessarily the most significant problem that the country faces at the moment.” 

He continued: “I do feel we are rushing some of this [climate action] stuff.” Citing the costs of implementing new technologies he said: “we’re bringing in measures that are sort of unnecessary, too soon.”27Tony Diver. “Lord Frost: Covid lockdowns were a serious mistake – the Government needs to do ‘stuff that works’,” The Telegraph, January 13, 2022. Archived January 13, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/bZlfL

Key Actions

May 17, 2023 

David Frost spoke at the National Conservatism Conference (NCC) in London alongside a panel of noted climate science deniers including Toby Young, Sherelle Jacobs, and GB News hosts including Nigel Farage, Jacob Rees-Mogg and others.28Let us confine government to its proper role in building…a free country.” Frost’s speech to the National Conservative Conference – full text,” ConservativeHome, May 18, 2023. Archived May 18, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/mbT6A 

Frost advocated for the national conservatism movement in a piece in the Telegraph published the next day, writing: 

“National conservatism is not the whole story. But it can be an important part of conservatism for post-Brexit Britain – helping us govern our nation in a tried and tested conservative way. The Conservative Party should embrace it, and draw strength from it, not push it aside.”29David Frost. “The Tories should embrace national conservatism,” The Telegraph, May 18, 2023. Archived May 19, 2023. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/wvwHa

April 26, 2023

Frost retweeted a Daily Sceptic tweet featuring an article written by Benny Peiser and Andrew Montford, entitled “Net Zero is Being Mugged by Reality and the People Are Waking Up,” which argued that pro-climate discourse “is simply the latest manifestation of mankind’s habitual tendency to totalitarianism,” in which “green fanatics aspire to dictate every aspect of life […] just as the National Socialists and the Communist commissars tried to do.”

The tweet was captioned: 

“As the realities of Net Zero – sky-high energy prices, the end of flying and red meat – hit home for the general public, the backlash is building and the tide is turning.”30The Daily Sceptic. “As the realities of Net Zero – sky-high energy prices, the end of flying and red meat – hit home for the general public, the backlash is building and the tide is turning,” Tweet by @LD_Sceptics, April 26, 2023. Retrieved from Twitter.com. Archived June 2, 2023. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.

November 22, 2022

Frost became a board member of the GWPF during COP27. In a press release announcing his appointment, he said

“For too long the costs of Net Zero policies have not been given adequate attention by policy makers or the media. There is far too much wishful thinking about pressing ahead with decarbonisation as quickly as possible, and too much demonisation of those who are asking legitimate questions.”31Lord Frost joins the GWPF,” The Global Warming Policy Foundation, November 9, 2022. Archived December 18, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/Gsokk

February 12, 2022

Frost, along with members of the Net Zero Scrutiny Group (NZSG) headed by Conservative MPs Steve Baker and Craig Mackinlay, signed a letter to Boris Johnson’s government calling for the government to lift the ban on fracking.32Adam Barnett and Michaela Hermann. “Mapped: How the Net Zero Backlash is Tied to Climate Denial – and Brexit,” DeSmog, March 18, 2022. Archived March 30, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/Pvjuw

He later told the Telegraph: 

“If our economy is to boom after Brexit, British industry needs a competitive and reliable source of energy which we hold in our own hands and brings investment into this country. Shale gas production achieves all this and more.”33Edward Malnick. “Tory grandees urge Boris Johnson to lift ‘unconservative’ ban on fracking,” The Telegraph, February 12, 2022. Archived February 12, 2022. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/JsAdK

December 2021

Frost resigns as cabinet minister from Boris Johnson’s government citing concerns over the COVID-19 policy, saying that the UK needed to “learn to live with covid.”

He added:

“I hope we can get back on track soon and not be tempted by the kind of coercive measures we have seen elsewhere.”34Laura Hughes, Peter Foster, Jude Webber and Andy Bounds. “Brexit minister Lord Frost quits UK cabinet,Financial Times, December 18, 2021. Archived December 18, 2021. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/saLlT

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