Nils-Axel Morner (Deceased)

Nils-Axel Mörner (Deceased)


  • Ph.D., Geology, (1969). [1], [2]


Mörner was a professor at the University of Stockholm where he was head of the Paleogeophysics and Geodynamics department from 1991 to 2005. Morner passed away on October 16, 2020 at the age of 86. [1], [3][30]

Mörner claimed to be an expert in “dowsing,” the practice of finding water, metals, gemstones etc. through the use of a Y-shaped twig.

Mörner’s attempt to prove his dowsing abilities is chronicled by James Randi, the well-known myth buster, who has offered the longstanding One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge. [4]

Stance on Climate Change

October 2017

In an interview with blogger and climate change denier Roger Tattersall about Morner’s thoughts on the “World Climate Change Conference” in Rome, Morner said: [22]

“The mechanism of climate change has absolutely nothing to do with the increasing CO2, but is primarily driven by the sun […] we don’t need all this kind of mitigation […] especially putting money in fighting CO2. [..] There is climate change, but they are natural ups an downs.”

March 30, 2005

“Climate is becoming increasingly warmer we hear almost every day. This is what has become known as Global Warming. The driving idea is that there is a linear relationship between CO2 increase in the atmosphere and global temperature. The fact, however, is that temperature has constantly gone up and down. From 1850 to 1970, we see an almost linear relationship with Solar variability; not CO2. For the last 30 years, our data sets are so contaminated by personal interpretations and personal choices that it is almost impossible to sort up the mess in reliable and unreliable data,” Morner said in written evidence he presented to the UK Parliament Select Committee on Economic Affairs [5]

Key Quotes

August 6, 2007

Mörner published a booklet titled “The Greatest Lie Ever Told” which attempts to disprove the idea of catastrophic sea level rises. Mörner claims that “the rapid rise in sea levels predicted by computer models simply cannot happen.” [6]

June 22, 2007

“If you have a temperature rise, if it’s a problem in one area, it’s beneficial in another area. But sea level is the real ‘bad guy,’ and therefore they [The IPCC] have talked very much about it. But the real thing is, that [sea level rise] doesn’t exist in observational data, only in computer modeling.” [3]

Key Deeds

November 23–24, 2018

Morner was listed on the program for the 12th conference of the European Institute for Climate and Energy (EIKE), also billed as the Heartland Institute‘s 13th International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC13). According to a translation of the agenda, he spoke alongside Thomas Wysmuller on “The Kattegat and the Baltic as test areas for absolute sea-level changes” on November 23. [29]

February 4, 2018

In January 2018, more than 200 scientists endorsed an open letter calling on the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) to remove climate change denier Rebekah Mercer from its board and to “end ties to anti-science propagandists and funders of climate science misinformation.” The New York Times reported that those among the AMNH letter calling for Mercer to step down were Michael E. Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center at Pennsylvania State University, and Katharine Hayhoe, director of the Climate Science Center at Texas Tech University. [26]

Morner was among a group of climate change deniers who responded with their own open letter, calling for the AMNH “not to cave in to this pressure.” The letter was signed by numerous individuals with ties to groups funded by the Mercer Family Foundation such as Will Happer of the CO2 CoalitionRichard Lindzen, a fellow at the Cato InstituteCraig Idso, the chairman of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change. There are a number of signatories affiliated with the Heartland Institute, which has received over $5.78 million from the Mercer Family Foundation since 2008. [27]

The letter reads: [28]

The Earth has supported abundant life many times in the geological past when there were much higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. It is quite likely that future generations will benefit from the enrichment of Earth’s atmosphere with more carbon dioxide.

Make no mistake, the agitators are not defending science from quackery — quite the contrary!”

October 2017

Morner was a presenter at the the “World Climate Change Conference” in Rome. He later discussed his thoughts on the conference in interview with blogger and climate change denier Roger Tattersall[22]

DeSmog investigation of the conference found that the event had been hijacked by climate science deniers who had previously called for climate scientists to be investigated for fraud. The conference was organized by ConferenceSeries, also known as OMICS, which promotes hundreds of meetings around the world. [23]

The U.S. government’s Federal Trade Commission launched a court action against the group in August 2016 that alleged deceptive marketing practices. Nils-Axel Morner is listed as one of the Chairs/Co-chairs of the conference, and also helped organize another climate change denial conference in London in September 2016. [24], [25]

After being contacted by DeSmog, several presenters said that their names “should not be on the program” of the conference in Italy. OMICS, who was also contacted, said it would “investigate” the line-up for its conference and if it found “unnecessary science,” it would contact attendees to inform them “about the real faces of those who are looking to make a platform for spreading the nonsense through our forum.” [23]

February 23, 2017

Morner was a signatory of a petition (PDF) organized by Richard Lindzen of the Cato Institute urging President Donald Trump to pull the United States out of the United Nations international convention on climate change (UNFCCC). [19]

In just a few weeks, more than 300 eminent scientists and other qualified individuals from around the world have signed the petition below,” Lindzen wrote in the letter. [19]

DeSmog investigated the list, and found that only a small handful of the signatories could be considered “even remotely ‘qualified’ or ‘eminent’ — but not in the field of climate science.” The list included individuals “interested in climate,” and one signatory who only identified as an “emailer who wished to sign the petition” while some signers provided no affiliation or address whatsoever. [20]

August 2016

Nils-Axel Morner is listed as a “Founding Member” of group named Climate Exit (Clexit) led by climate change denier Christopher Monckton. According to Clexit’s founding statement (PDF), “The world must abandon this suicidal Global Warming crusade. Man does not and cannot control the climate.” [15], [16]

Desmog reports on how the group grew in the wake of the UK‘s decision to leave the EU. A key member of Clexit’s “60 well-informed science, business and economic leaders” is Hugh Morgan, a former board member of the Reserve Bank of Australia and former CEO of Western Mining Corporation with close ties to Australia’s Liberal party. [17][18]

According to Clexit’s founding statement:

If the Paris climate accord is ratified, or enforced locally by compliant governments, it will strangle the leading economies of the world with pointless carbon taxes and costly climate and energy policies, all with no sound basis in evidence or science […]” [16]

December 1–3, 2015

Nils-Axel Morner was a speaker at the “Paris Climate Challenge” (PCC) an event organized by the newly created Independent Committee on Geoethics (ICG) with the goal of “Challenging the groupthink of COP21.” Morner announced the launching of the ICG at the event, and also presented a paper on sea level rise. View video of his speech below: [21]

July 7–9, 2014

Nils-Axel Mörner was a speaker at the Heartland Institute’s Ninth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC9) in Las Vegas, Nevada. [14]

DeSmogBlog has done in-depth research on the other speakers and sponsors from Heartland’s ICCC9, which can be found here.

November 30–December 1, 2012

Nils-Axel Morner was a speaker (PDF) at the Eighth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC-8)/Fifth International Conference on Climate and Energy (ICCE-5) sponsored by both the Heartland Institute and the European Institute for Climate and Energy (EIKE). Morner’s speech is titled “Sea Level Changes – Facts and Fiction.” [13]

May 2010

Mörner was a speaker at the Heartland Institute’s 2010 International Conference on Climate Change.  One of the main purposes of Heartland’s conference is to generate media attention to global warming skepticism. [7]

After the conference, Mörner had a book signing for The Greatest Lie Ever Told.

The Conference is sponsored by numerous global warming skeptic organizations, and in 2009 the event’s sponsors collectively received over $47 million from oil companies and right-wing foundations.

October 20, 2009

Mörner wrote an open letter (PDF)to President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives, protesting Nasheed’s message when the hosted a Cabinet meeting to raise awareness about rising sea levels and how they would affect the Maldives. [8]

Mörner summarizes his points as follows:

  1. In the last 2000 years, sea level has oscillated with 5 peaks reaching 0.6 to 1.2 m above the present sea level.
  2. From 1790 to 1970 sea level was about 20 cm higher than today
  3. In the 1970s, sea level fell by about 20 cm to its present level
  4. Sea level has remained stable for the last 30 years, implying that there are no traces of any alarming on-going sea level rise.
  5. Therefore, we are able to free the Maldives (and the rest of low-lying coasts and island around the globe) from the condemnation of becoming flooded in the near future.

December 13, 2007

Signed a a 2007 open letter to UN secretary general Ban Ki-Moon that contends “It is not possible to stop climate change, a natural phenomenon that has affected humanity through the ages,” and that “Attempts to prevent global climate change from occurring are ultimately futile, and constitute a tragic misallocation of resources that would be better spent on humanity’s real and pressing problems.” [9]

April 2006

Mörner signed a 2006 open letter to Stephen Harper that urged inaction on climate change policy.

May 3, 2004

Attended a Congressional and Media Briefing on “The Impacts of Global Warming: Why the Alarmist View is Wrong,” hosted by the Cooler Heads Coalition. [10]

Other attendees included Paul Reiter, Madhav L. Khandekar, and Patrick Michaels.



According to a search of 22,000 academic journals, Mörner has published 65+ original research papers in peer-reviewed journals, mainly in the area of paleoseismicity, in other words the study of historical earthquake activity.

Mörner has also published The Greatest Lie Ever Told (*Which does not appear to be peer-reviewed*) that sets out to refute the idea of catastrophic sea level rise.


  1. Nils-Axel Mörner, Geologist, Sweden,” Accessed January, 2012.
  2. Kim Greenhouse. “Sea Level Basics,” It’s Rainmaking Time!, February 22, 2010.
  3. “Interview: Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner” (PDF), EIR News Service, June 22, 2007. Retrieved January, 2012 from
  4. James Randi. “End-of-month-notes,”, March 2, 1998.
  6. NZers misled by unfounded sea level claims” (Press Release: New Zealand Climate Science Coalition), Scoop Independent News, August 6, 2007.
  7. “4th International Conference on Climate Change” (PDF), The Heartland Institute. Retrieved January, 2012 from the University of Hartford server (
  8. “Open Letter to President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives” (PDF). Retrieved January, 2012 from Swedish South Asian Studies Network (
  9. Open Letter to the Secretary-General of the United Nations,” December 13, 2007. Reprinted by the Science and Public Policy Institute.
  10. Impacts of Global Warming: Why the Alarmist View is Wrong,” The Cooler Heads Coalition ( Archived February 5, 2005.
  11. NRSP People,” Natural Resources Stewardship Project. Archived July 2, 2007.
  12. WHO WE ARE,” International Climate Science Coalition. Accessed January, 2012.
  13. “8th International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC-8): V International Conference on Climate and Energy (ICCE-5). Hotel Bayerischer Hof, Munich, November 30 – December 1, 2012” (PDF) retrieved from on November 24, 2012.
  14. Return of Climate Denial-a-Palooza: Heartland Institute Hitches Anti-Science Wagon to Vegas FreedomFest,” DeSmogBlog, July 7, 2014. Archived July 14, 2014.
  15. The Clexit Committee comprises” (PDF), Archived.pdf on file at Desmog.
  16. After Brexit, Clexit” (PDF), Archived .pdf on file at Desmog.
  17. Graham Readfearn. “After Brexit, Climate Science Denialists Form New Group to Call for a Clexit,” Desmog, August 3, 2016.
  18. Hugh Morgan AO,” Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Archived February 22, 2002. URL
  19. PETITION” (PDF), February 23, 2017. Richard Lindzen. PDF Archived at DeSmog.
  20. Graham Readfearn. “Climate Science Denier Richard Lindzen’s List of 300 “Scientists” Sent to Trump Is the Usual Parade of Non-Experts,” DeSmog, February 27, 2017.
  21. About PCC15,” Archived November 25, 2017. URL
  22. Niklas Morner interview,” YouTube video uploaded by user “Rog Tallbloke” on October 23, 2017. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
  23. Exclusive: UN, EU Agencies Reject Ties to Conference Hijacked by Climate Science Deniers,” DeSmog, May 31, 2017.
  24. Climate Change 2017 Report,” Archived January 4, 2018. URL:
  25. FTC Charges Academic Journal Publisher OMICS Group Deceived Researchers,” Federal Trade Commission, August 26, 2016. Archived January 4, 2018. URL:
  26. Robin Pogrebin and Somini Sengupta. “A Science Denier at the Natural History Museum? Scientists Rebel,” The New York Times, January 25, 2018. Archived February 13, 2018. URL
  27. Graham Readfearn. “Climate Science Deniers Defend New York’s American Museum of Natural History From Calls to Drop Trustee Rebekah Mercer,” DeSmog, February 6, 2018.
  28. mnh18-feb4-petitionletter (PDF – Untitled). Retrieved from Watts Up With That.
  29. Program – 12th International Climate and Energy Conference” EIKETranslated via Google Translate. Archived November 23, 2018. URL
  30. Christopher Monckton. ”In memoriam professor Nils-Axel Mörner,” Clintel, October 16, 2020. Archived October 20, 2020. Archive URL:

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