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Case update 15 May 2024

Charity Commission will report on climate denial think-tank

Original image: HAKINMHAN / Shutterstock

After more than a year of delay, sustained legal pressure has forced the charities regulator to confirm it will report on whether the Global Warming Policy Foundation has breached charity law.

The Charity Commission has confirmed, after more than 18 months of delay, that it will report shortly on whether the climate denial “charity”, the Global Warming Policy Foundation, has breached charity law. The confirmation comes after we said we were preparing legal action.

The original complaint about the Tufton Street charity, submitted by Layla Moran, Clive Lewis and Caroline Lucas in October 2022, highlighted multiple apparent breaches of charity law. The think-tank has spent several hundred thousand pounds on one-sided research downplaying the climate emergency and has an inappropriate relationship with the affiliated campaign group Net Zero Watch.

In April, Good Law Project and the cross-party group of MPs told the Charity Commission the delay was contributing to an unlawful distortion of the public debate around the climate crisis, and said they were preparing to sue over its inaction. This prompted it to say that it had opened a “regulatory compliance case” and will soon release the results of its investigation.

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We’re pleased our legal pressure has forced the commission to commit to action on the dark money group, but we’ll be carefully scrutinising its decision and we don’t rule out further legal action if the Charity Commission has failed to apply charity law.