The scientific world was shocked and outraged today when the long-awaited papal encyclical on climate change, De haeretico comburendo, was leaked by seasoned Vatican watcher Sandro Magister. Magister was immediately stripped of his press accreditation.
In a scathing attack on what he will call ‘the climate change industry’, Pope Francis will claim that recorded changes over recent years are well within generally accepted margins of error, and that evidence that they are primarily caused by human activity are ‘highly speculative and almost certainly exaggerated’.
The Pope will call for the resources of global finance now being devoted to lowering greenhouse gas emissions to be redirected to development goals in the Third World. ‘The biblical imperatives,’ says the encyclical, ‘are to feed the hungry and care for the sick. Beside these, all else – including the grandiose notion that we can “save the planet” – is of lesser importance.’
Response to the leaked encyclical was swift and damning. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued a press release condemning the intervention as ‘devastating and destructive’. Because of Francis’s popularity people will listen to this nonsense,’ said a spokesperson. ‘It will do untold damage.’
Prince Charles described the intervention as ‘unhelpful’. ‘It will further widen the gulf between the Roman Catholic Church and the Church of England’, he claimed. ‘This South American chappie doesn’t seem to realise that this is not just a matter of theology or whatever: this is really important.’
To the Vatican claim that Pope Francis was merely expressing a personal opinion, the ICCC responded: ‘Who is this Bergoglio guy, anyway? Doesn’t he realise that we are infallible?’
The world awaits the full text of the document with bated breath…