The CRU graph. Note that it is calibrated in tenths of a degree Celsius and that even that tiny amount of warming started long before the late 20th century. The horizontal line is totally arbitrary, just a visual trick. The whole graph would be a horizontal line if it were calibrated in whole degrees -- thus showing ZERO warming

There is an "ascetic instinct" (or perhaps a "survivalist instinct") in many people that causes them to delight in going without material comforts. Monasteries and nunneries were once full of such people -- with the Byzantine stylites perhaps the most striking example. Many Greenies (other than Al Gore and his Hollywood pals) have that instinct too but in the absence of strong orthodox religious committments they have to convince themselves that the world NEEDS them to live in an ascetic way. So their personal emotional needs lead them to press on us all a delusional belief that the planet needs "saving".

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31 May, 2016

Climate skepticism a winner for Trump

Americans who fear Muslim terrorists love Donald Trump, as do Americans who want to keep out illegal Mexican immigrants. Trade protectionists and foreign-policy isolationists also love Trump. These voting groups, all part of the Trump coalition and all marginalized by elites because of their stance would see themselves as vindicated and count themselves as winners should Trump become president of the United States.

But other important groups, little discussed by the punditry, also embrace Trump for validating the causes that animate them, also form part of the Trump coalition and also stand to be vindicated.

Trump’s success comes of his ability to recognize major visceral issues and then to champion them unapologetically, often through seemingly outlandish positions like making Mexicans pay for a wall. His politically incorrect, categorical positions not only win the public’s approval, they win for Trump intense loyalty.

Global-warming skeptics represent an immense and often passionate demographic. Though skeptics receive little favourable coverage in the mainstream press, polling over the years consistently shows the American public is evenly split on whether human activity imperils the climate, with the most recent Gallup Poll finding only 41 per cent answering yes when asked if “global warming will pose a serious threat to you or your way of life in your lifetime.”

Trump, who has repeatedly mocked global warming as a hoax, is their guy. “Global warming is a total, and very expensive, hoax!” reads one of his tweets. “This very expensive GLOBAL WARMING bullshit has got to stop. Our planet is freezing, record low temps, and our GW scientists are stuck in ice,” reads another. Unlike the Obama administration, which demeans global-warming skeptics and even treats them as criminals, a Trump administration would legitimize their views, enable them to speak their minds freely and end a longstanding indignity.

While many conservatives doubt Trump’s conservative credentials, he’s a clear hit with conservatives who have a loathing for the United Nations, and see it as a world government in waiting as well as ineffectual, bureaucratic and costly. Anti-UN conservatives also form a sizable demographic. In a Gallup Poll earlier this year, just 17 per cent of Republicans said the “United Nations is doing a good job in trying to solve the problems it has had to face.”

These conservatives support Trump for railing against “the utter weakness and incompetence of the United Nations.” He’s said the UN “is not a friend of democracy, it’s not a friend to freedom, it’s not a friend even to the United States of America where, as you know, it has its home.” Trump’s answer is a much-diminished United Nations, which the U.S. would fund to a much lesser degree.

Trump may also become the candidate for championing Israel, another issue that inflames passions. Until recently, Democrats and Republicans alike backed Israel, but the base of the Democratic party is turning against Israel, and at July’s Democratic convention the pro-Palestinian Bernie Sanders faction will cast Israel as an oppressor of peace-seeking Palestinians. The vitriol certain to be expressed against Israel is likely to alarm Jews, who historically have overwhelmingly voted Democratic, making them open to a Trump charm offensive.

That courtship has already begun. “When you live in a society where athletes and movie stars are the heroes, little kids want to be athletes and movie stars. In Palestinian society, the heroes are those who murder Jews. We can’t let this continue,” Trump recently told AIPAC, a pro-Israel lobby, to cheers and applause.

The Trump coalition isn’t based on any single ideology or any consistent set of rational policies — it is a populist assemblage of largely disparate groups whose common bond is their exclusion from the orthodoxy. These are passionate voters, for whom voting is very personal.


SEC issues climate chaos “guidance”

What about risks from anti-energy policies imposed in the name of stopping climate change?

Paul Driessen

President Obama continues to use “dangerous manmade climate change” to justify a massive regulatory onslaught that will “fundamentally transform” America’s energy, economic, business, industrial, social, legal and constitutional systems before he leaves office.

The more science batters alarmist claims, the more people realize that plant-fertilizing carbon dioxide makes life on Earth possible, the more China, India and other developing countries burn oil, gas and coal and increase their CO2 emissions to lift billions out of poverty, malnutrition, disease and brutally short lives – the more the administration issues draconian climate edicts.

Almost every department, agency and bureaucrat that didn’t eagerly volunteer has been dragooned to aid the campaign: from the EPA and Agriculture, Interior, Defense and State Departments, to the Overseas Private Investment Corporation. The Securities and Exchange Commission is the latest agency to re-up.

Pressure from climate and environmental activist groups “persuaded” the SEC to release its initial “interpretive guidance” on climate change in January 2010. It purported to help companies decide when they must disclose how their business might be affected by actual physical climate change, by direct impacts from laws, regulations or international agreements, or indirectly by effects on business trends.

In March 2016, the Commission told ExxonMobil and Chevron they had to let shareholders vote on whether the companies must explain how their profitability might be affected by climate change and laws to prevent it. Both resolutions were rejected, but proponents vowed to return as often as it takes to win.

On April 13, 2016, the SEC published a 341-page Concept Release intended to “seek public comment” on ways to modernize, improve and enhance Regulation S-K business and financial disclosure requirements for registered companies’ annual and other reports. It asks whether new specific disclosure requirements should be added to ensure greater transparency and aid investors in determining whether companies are being socially responsible, properly handling diversity and inclusion concerns – and adequately addressing needs and risks associated with climate change, resource scarcity and sustainable development.

Many people certainly view these as legitimate concerns. They certainly are on the minds of certain investors and interest groups – especially CERES, Environmental Defense, and the California State Teachers and Public Employees Retirement Systems, all of which seek to advance their narrow parochial interests on climate change, “appropriate” energy, and particularly taxpayer subsidies for their favorite causes and cronies. The issues are certainly being used to drive Obama Administration agendas.

However, prudent investors (as well as employees, consumers and voters) might want greater disclosure, transparency and honesty regarding the full panoply of risks associated with laws and regulations imposed in the name of stabilizing Earth’s always-unstable climate and weather … mandates, preferences and subsidies enacted to support “eco-friendly” wind, solar and biofuel “alternatives” to oil, natural gas and coal  … and campaign contributions that keep supportive legislators and judges in office.

This climate crisis edifice owes its existence to assertions that fossil fuel emissions have replaced natural forces in climate change, and any future changes will be disastrous. As those claims are further debunked, or enough voters and legislators become disgusted about the $1.5 trillion spent every year on climate crisis programs, the risks won’t come from climate change. They will come from a vengeful public.

No wonder Al Gore, Mike Mann and their comrades refuse to debate, jealously guard their kingdom, and chortle as state AGs prosecute “climate deniers” for racketeering. Prudent investors might want to study these issues in greater depth and raise a few questions that Obama’s SEC prefers not to entertain.

* As scientist John Christy told Congress in February, the climate agenda is driven by data that have been massaged and manipulated, assertions and predictions that are contradicted by Real World data and observations, and “demonstrably deficient” computer models that predict global temperatures way above what have actually been measured, and cannot even reproduce past temperatures. Climatology remains an immature science that cannot even explain major historical climate events, much less predict the future.

Those problems are compounded by phony “hockey stick” temperature graphs, ClimateGate emails, once reputable scientific journals rejecting papers that contest climate catastrophe claims, and headline-grabbing disaster “studies” that are based on rank speculation or written by environmental activists.

Are the alleged physical impacts of climate change real, or merely generated by computers and activists? Are they due to fossil fuels, or to natural forces that have driven climate and weather throughout history?

* Regardless of how much the United States, Europe and other developed countries slash their fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions, developing nations will continue using those fuels at a feverish pace. Atmospheric CO2 concentrations will thus continue to climb beyond the 400 ppm (0.04%) level. Job losses, reduced living standards and countless other sacrifices by Americans, Europeans, Canadians and Australians – especially by poor, working class and minority families – will not affect this trend.

Will we even be able to detect the effect of developed nation sacrifices on Earth’s climate, against normal, natural fluctuations? Why aren’t we measuring the harmful effects of anti-fossil fuel laws, regulations and treaties? How are these policies and actions moral, socially responsible or sustainable?

* Many positive profit projections and other indirect benefits to business trends are based on assertions that manmade climate chaos is real and massive subsidies for renewable energy will continue. Negative effects on profits and corporate reputations are assumed to result from associations with fossil fuels.

But if governments begin to reject climate alarmism or eliminate mandates, subsidies, guaranteed loans, feed-in tariffs and exemptions from endangered species laws, companies built on this house of cards will collapse. A number of EU and Chinese wind and solar companies have already gone belly-up or lost up to 90% of their market value, as demand for their products waned. Meanwhile, companies now vilified for producing or using fossil fuels that sustain our economies, jobs and living standards would benefit.

Coal, oil and natural gas still provide over 80% of all US and global energy. Largely because of abundant natural gas produced via fracking. US CO2 emissions declined in 2014, while the EU’s rose 0.7 percent.

Shouldn’t wind turbine companies have to disclose that generating just 20% of US electricity with wind power would require some 186,000 turbines, 19,000 miles of new transmission lines, 18,000,000 acres of land, and 270,000,000 tons of concrete, steel, copper, fiberglass and rare earths, plus millions of dead birds and bats every year? Is that sustainable?

Shouldn’t insurance companies and reinsurers have to “disclose” that their higher rates and profits are based on 20-foot higher sea levels and more violent hurricanes conjured up by bogus computer models? Doesn’t that amount to deceptive advertising, fear-mongering and corporate social irresponsibility?

* If President Obama and the SEC are going to demand full disclosure, honesty, transparency and accountability, those fundamental principles should also apply to government officials. They rarely do.

Justice Department lawyers have knowingly lied to judges in immigration cases. Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice, Ben Rhodes and other officials have been caught in multiple bald-faced lies. The IRS deliberately targeted conservatives, and then destroyed records and lied about its actions. EPA bungled a mine cleanup, polluted waterways in four states and lied about the impacts. NOAA and EPA have engaged in systematic misrepresentations and data manipulation on climate change. No one has been punished.

The impacts on company profits, investors, employees, families and communities have been extensive. Government agencies want more and more power and control over our lives – but refuse to accept any accountability for incompetence, malfeasance, deliberate lies or the serious harm they cause.

This is why Americans are fed up. Perhaps the 2016 elections will finally bring long overdue change.

Via email

14,000 Abandoned Wind Turbines Litter the United States

The towering symbols of a fading religion, over 14,000 wind turbines, abandoned, rusting, slowly decaying. When it is time to clean up after a failed idea, no green environmentalists are to be found. Wind was free, natural, harnessing Earth’s bounty for the benefit of all mankind, sounded like a good idea.

Wind turbines, like solar panels, break down.  They produce less energy before they break down than the energy it took to make them.  The wind does not blow all the time, or even most of the time. When it is not blowing, they require full-time backup from conventional power plants.

Without government subsidy, they are unaffordable. With governments facing financial troubles, the subsidies are unaffordable. It was a nice dream, a very expensive dream, but it didn’t work.

California had the “big three” of wind farm locations — Altamont Pass, Tehachapi, and San Gorgonio, considered the world’s best wind sites. California’s wind farms, almost 80% of the world’s wind generation capacity ceased to generate even more quickly than Kamaoa Wind Farm in Hawaii. There are five other abandoned wind farms in Hawaii. When they are abandoned, getting the turbines removed is a major problem. They are highly unsightly, and they are huge, and that’s a lot of material to get rid of.

Unfortunately the same areas that are good for siting wind farms are a natural pass for migrating birds. Altamont’s turbines have been shut down four months out of every year for migrating birds after environmentalists filed suit. According to the Golden Gate Audubon Society 75-110 Golden Eagles, 380 Burrowing Owls, 300 Red-Tailed Hawks and 333 American Kestrels are killed by the turbines every year. An Alameda County Community Development Agency study points to 10,000 annual bird deaths from Altamont wind turbines. The Audubon Society makes up numbers like the EPA, but there’s a reason why they call them bird Cuisinarts.

Palm Springs has enacted an ordinance requiring their removal from San Gorgonio Pass, but unless something else changes abandoned turbines will remain a rotting eyesores, or the taxpayers who have already paid through the nose for overpriced energy and crony-capitalist tax scams will have to foot the bill for their removal.

President Obama’s offshore wind farms will be far more expensive than those sited in California’s ideal wind locations. Salt water is far more damaging than sun and rain, and offshore turbines don’t last as long. But nice tax scams for his crony-capitalist backers will work well as long as he can blame it all on saving the planet.


Met Office: Gulf Stream Slowdown Due To Nature Not Climate Change

Natural long term cycles in the ocean and not climate change are behind the well publicised slow down in the Gulf Stream that has been observed in recent years, according to new research from Met Office scientists. The observed decrease in the so called Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation – of which the Gulf Stream is a part – over the past decade was preceded by a period where the circulation intensified, they report in a new paper.

From the UK Meteorological Office (Met Office):

Any substantial weakening of a major North Atlantic ocean current system would have a profound impact on the climate of north-west Europe, including the UK.

The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation – part of which is known as the Gulf Stream – has been observed over the past 10 years, and has been seen to weaken over that time, raising the question of whether the weakening has been caused by climate change. New Met Office research published today instead suggests that the trend is likely due to variability over decades.

Laura Jackson of the Met Office Hadley Centre is the lead researcher. Commenting on the paper, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, she said: “The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation plays a vital role in our climate as it transports heat northwards in the Atlantic and keeps Europe relatively warm.”

Reanalysis captures Gulf Stream changes

The Met Office research produced a new ocean ‘reanalysis’ combining a state-of-the-art model of ocean dynamics with ocean observations from satellites, and ocean floats sampling below the surface. This has captured year-to-year variations and recent decadal trends with unprecedented accuracy.

Laura Jackson said: “Our research produced a picture of how the ocean has evolved over the last couple of decades. The reanalysis reproduces the observed decrease in the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation over the past decade, but finds that this was preceded by a period where the circulation intensified. This suggests that decadal timescale variability likely played a key role in the weakening of the circulation seen over the last decade.”

The researchers are keen to stress that this does not rule out the possibility that the observed weakening is a combination of decadal variability and a longer term decrease that would only be detectable after more years of observations.

The Abstract

The Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC) has weakened substantially over the past decade. Some weakening may already have occurred over the past century, and global climate models project further weakening in response to anthropogenic climate change. Such a weakening could have significant impacts on the surface climate. However, ocean model simulations based on historical conditions have often found an increase in overturning up to the mid-1990s, followed by a decrease. It is therefore not clear whether the observed weakening over the past decade is part of decadal variability or a persistent weakening. Here we examine a state-of-the-art global-ocean reanalysis product, GloSea5, which covers the years 1989 to 2015 and closely matches observations of the AMOC at 26.5°?N, capturing the interannual variability and decadal trend with unprecedented accuracy. The reanalysis data place the ten years of observations—April 2004 to February 2014—into a longer-term context and suggest that the observed decrease in the overturning circulation is consistent with a recovery following a previous increase. We find that density anomalies that propagate southwards from the Labrador Sea are the most likely cause of these variations. We conclude that decadal variability probably played a key role in the decline of the AMOC observed over the past decade.


Laura C. Jackson, K. Andrew Peterson, Chris D. Roberts and Richard A. Wood; Recent slowing of Atlantic overturning circulation as a recovery from earlier strengthening; Nature Geoscience (2016) doi:10.1038/ngeo2715.


Global Warming Scaled Back, Say Two New Studies

Climate models may be running 2 to 4 times too hot

Ronald Bailey

Last year was the hottest year in the surface temperature record according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In contrast, 2015 was the third warmest year according to the satellite temperature record. Given record breaking heat in the first few months of 2016, NOAA is now projecting that there is a 99 percent chance that the current year will be the hottest on record - basically about 1.5 degrees Celsius above the 1891-1910 baseline. The 1.5 degree Celsius increase is significant because last December the nations of world agreed at Paris U.N. climate change conference to try to keep future average temperatures below that threshold.

A strong El Nino which greatly warms the Eastern Pacific Ocean is responsible for boosting average global temperatures in the past year. That phenomenon is now abating and may soon be replaced by a La Nina which will dramatically cool the waters of the Eastern Pacific and drag down the global average. Clearly natural variations in temperature can and do drive temperature trends in the short-run, but what about the long-run?

Two new studies look at the long-run projections of climate computer models and suggest that they are running too hot. One critical parameter is equilibrium climate sensitivity, which is conventionally defined as the amounf of warming that can be expected from doubling atmospheric carbon dioxide. In the current issue of the journal, Earth and Space Science, mathematician J. Ray Bates, from the Meteorology and Climate Centre at the University College Dublin, calculates climate sensitivity focusing specifically the meteorological dynamics in the tropics that are mostly ignored in climate models. Basically, the tropics are more effective at expelling extra heat into space than the models project.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change widened its range of climate sensitivity estimates to 1.5 to 4.5 degrees Celsius in its latest report, dropping the lower bound from 2 degrees. The new study suggests that climate sensitivity could be much the lower, about 1 degree C for doubling atmospheric carbon dioxide. If this were true, then the climates models are proejcting future temperarture increases that are 2 to 4 times hotter than the actual likely trend. It is worth noting that the satellite data find that the global rate of temperature increase since 1979 has been +0.12 degree Celsius per decade which suggests that the lower estimates of climate sensitivity may be correct.

Another study published in Nature by the researchers at European Center for Nuclear Research, or CERN finds that the world was much cloudier in the pre-industrial age than previously thought. The researchers suggest that a cloudier world was a cooler world. Computer climate models assume that man-made atmospheric pollutants like sulfur dioxide have increased modern cloudiness which has further shielded the planet from higher temperatures. If it turns out that early eras were somewhat cloudier than represented in the models that means that future warming has again been overestimated.

But always remember: The science is settled!


Australia: Homeowners kept in dark about climate change risk to houses, says Greenie report

They are asking for information that does not exist.  There is no way sea level rise can be predicted.  No Greenie prediction has come true yet -- and they have made many, most of which were hilariously wrong.  The Climate Institute is a privately funded Warmist organization that is at present struggling for funding.  The "report" referred to would seem to be an attempt to drum up funding for themselves

The risk that houses in some areas of Australia are likely to become uninsurable, dilapidated and uninhabitable due to climate change is kept hidden from those building and buying property along Australia’s coasts and in bushfire zones, a Climate Institute report says.

The report says there is untapped and unshared data held by regulators, state and local governments, insurers and banks on the level of risk, but that most homebuyers and developers are not told about the data and do not have access to it.

“Even when public authorities, financial institutions and other stakeholders possess information about current and future risk levels, they are sometimes unwilling, and sometimes unable, to share it with all affected parties,” the report released on Monday says.

“Thus, foreseeable risks are allowed to perpetuate, and even to grow via new housing builds. The full scale of the risk may only be recognised either through disaster or damage, or when insurance premiums become unaffordable. Any of these events can in turn affect housing values.”

The economic costs are high and could ultimately represent a real risk to the financial sector itself, the report says. While insurers, regulators and governments have started to recognise this risk, banks who approve the mortgages for at-risk properties have not yet begun working towards a solution.

For example, the report says, banks could integrate the impact of climate into their risk assessment processes, work with other stakeholders in the public, private and civil society sectors to research and develop ways to minimise climate impact risk to housing, and address losses that will occur in an equitable way.

It also says that state, federal and local governments could do more to protect buyers, by including climate risk in planning, development and approval processes, mandating the disclosure of all available hazard mapping, and requiring that all dwellings be built or renovated as fit-for-purpose for the maximum projected impacts of climate change.

Extreme weather and climate change risks associated with a property should also be disclosed at the point of sale.

“Even if these ‘uninsurable’ and ‘unadaptable’ properties are only a tiny minority of the total housing stock, the eventual devaluation could be financially devastating to individuals,” the report says. “It could also be damaging to banks, other financial companies and public balance sheets at all levels of government.

An author of the report and the manager of investment and governance at the Climate Institute,Kate Mackenzie, said the sector had to be proactive before houses became damaged, otherwise there could be a costly and messy battle over who bore responsibility.

For example, she said, councils could be liable for not providing flood data and for permitting a vulnerable development to go ahead, the developer for building it, the home owners for not realising the risk, the building code authority, the banks for financing the development and the mortgages, or the insurers.

“There’s definitely a big need for governments to show leadership on this,” she said.

“There have been a few very good recommendations made in the past by public policy reviews which really haven’t been followed up at the federal level or at the state level or through Coag, which would provide a mechanism for a national adaptation strategy.”

These included the reports from an Australian Treasury taskforce, the natural disaster insurance review, and two Productivity Commission inquiries, she said.

Her report concludes: “A sense of exasperation is evident among those who have spent any length of time seeking to address the economic and policy challenges posed by extreme weather.”

Some researchers are already taking the matter into their own hands and developing products to help buyers manage risk. Last month, the website Coastal Risk Australia was launched. It combines Google maps with detailed tide and elevation data, as well as future sea-level rise projections, to help people see whether their house or suburb is likely to be inundated.



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30 May, 2016

Trump freaks the Greenies

WHEN you think of saving the planet, Donald Trump probably isn’t exactly the first name to come to mind.

He’s previously described global warming as “an expensive hoax!”, warned Obama that the Environmental Protective Agency is “an impediment to both growth and jobs”, and admitted he’s “not a big believer in man-made climate change”.

But the Republican frontrunner’s latest speech was something next-level. Speaking at the Williston Basin Petroleum Conference in Bismarck, the capital of oil-rich North Dakota, Trump proudly trumpeted a series of anti-environmental measures to be enforced if he becomes President.

If elected President, Donald Trump said he would pull the United States out of the UN global climate accord, and slash environmental regulations on the energy industry if elected President.

“We’re going to cancel the Paris climate agreement,” he said, vowing to oppose “draconian climate rules”. He also pledged to axe any funding for United Nations programs related to global warming.

The Paris Agreement is basically a big international effort to reduce global warming and move towards more clean sources of energy.  America’s own commitments are to cut emissions by 26 to 28 per cent under 2005 levels by 2025.

But now, Trump has basically dumped all over that, effectively sending a global message that America is not with the rest of the world on this issue.

Less than a fortnight ago, he said he wanted to rewrite the agreement, claiming it wasn’t fair for the US.  “I will be looking at that very, very seriously, and at a minimum I will be renegotiating those agreements, at a minimum,” he said in an interview with Reuters. “And at a maximum I may do something else.”

He also said we should never give “foreign bureaucrats control over how much energy we use”.

But with the pledge to scrap it entirely, Trump has clearly cranked things up a notch. He’s previously stated that he doubts other big emitters — namely China — will actually meet the pledge to scale up its use of renewable energy technologies, thus he believes the US shouldn’t have to.

China signed the Paris Agreement last month, and pledged to honour its commitment. It was the 21st country to do so.

Here’s the thing: the Paris Agreement can’t come into force until at least 55 countries accounting for 55 per cent of global emissions formally agree to “join”. The US is the world’s second biggest emitter (next to China), and biggest historical emitter.

While Trump’s speech was met with loud applause from oil executives, environmental activists have been quick to criticise his comments, deeming his proposals “frightening”.

“Trump’s energy policies would accelerate climate change, protect corporate polluters who profit from poisoning our air and water, and block the transition to clean energy that is necessary to strengthen our economy and protect our climate and health,” said Tom Steyer, a billionaire environmental activist.

In the same speech yesterday, Trump said he wanted to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada.  “I would absolutely approve it, 100 per cent, but I would want a better deal,” he announced. “I want it built, but I want a piece of the profits. That’s how we’re going to make our country rich again.”

The Keystone XL pipeline is a proposed pipe of 1897km, which would run from the oil sands in Alberta, Canada, to Nebraska in the US. It would have the capacity to carry 830,000 barrels of oil each day.  Canada already sends 550,000 barrels of oil per day to the US, so this proposal would heavily increase that, making the US less dependent on the Middle East.

President Obama refused to approve the XL pipeline late last year, on the basis that the consequences for the planet would be too great. For the environmental movement, this decision was a huge symbolic victory.

Environmental experts have cited a number of reasons to oppose the pipeline’s approval. Some say developing the oil sands will make fossil fuels a lot more available, meaning there’ll less likely be a push towards renewable energy.

They’ve said Keystone will multiply emissions and speed up climate change — a view shared by Obama — which will plague Americans with toxic air pollution and have severe consequences for Americans’ health.

But Trump is having none of it. “As bad as President Obama is, Hillary Clinton will be worse,” he warned. “She will escalate the war with the American worker like never before and against American energy.”

He attacked both Clinton and Bernie Sanders, saying their policies would kill jobs and force the US “to be begging for oil again” from Middle Eastern producers.

He was especially hard on Clinton, saying her “agenda is job destruction” and warning that she would put coalminers out of work. “Hillary Clinton will unleash the EPA to control every aspect of our lives, and every aspect of energy,” he said. “They’ll make it impossible for the workers.”


Democrats urged the Interior Department Friday to reverse four decades of easy lease approvals for coal in favor of clean energy and climate change goals

"The fact that 90 percent of federal lease sales since 1990 had single bidders suggests that Western coal markets are structurally non-competitive," reads a letter sent by 14 Senate Democrats to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell on Friday.

"Too often the government has been a passive auctioneer, rather than a steward," the letter reads. "Given the diverse sources of electricity generation available today and the high costs of climate change, the current policy is unwise and outdated."

The letter was led by Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington and Sen. Barbara Boxer of California, the top Democrats on the energy and environment committees, respectively.

Jewell enacted a moratorium on new coal leases earlier this year, as the Interior Department re-evaluates how it treats coal under the federal leasing program in light of the social costs of mining and its environmental impacts.

The senators say they want the agency to get the science right, given coal's contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions, blamed by scientists for raising the temperature of the Earth. They also want the agency to address the "huge disparity" between the high cost of burning coal and the "low, short-term return from selling it."

The senators point out that the effects of mining a ton of the public's coal may rebound for centuries and damage other opportunities to use the land for recreation, water supply management and wildfire resilience, as well as for grazing cattle and harvesting timber.

The senators want Jewell to get the leasing policy right, giving it "teeth." They say previous policies have encouraged the government to make obtaining mining leases an easy process due to the energy shortages of the 1970s.

"Given the diverse sources of electricity generation available today and the high costs of climate change, what may have been a wise policy in the context of fuel shortages and disruptions in the 1970s is now unwise and outdated," they write.

In the 1970s, most U.S. power plants were fueled by petroleum. The Arab oil embargo placed electricity supplies in jeopardy, forcing the government to push the industry toward greater coal use. Some power producers from that era, perplexed by the current direction of the administration, readily point out the irony.


Unprecedented? Central England Warming Of 1692 – 1737 Twice As Fast As Late 20th Century Warming!

The Warmunists are fond of stating that the warming in the late twentieth century was unusual and unprecedented, and could only have been caused by rising CO2. They refuse to recognize that the early twentieth century warming was just as rapid. Of course that statement is also based on the lack of data for earlier times.

But there ARE data for earlier times. The Central England Temperature (CET) data set extends all the way back to 1659 and has been maintained to this day. Here is a window into an early 90-year section of that data set, overlaid with the last 90 years.

Figure 1 is CET and GHCN temperatures from 1925 to the present, compared to CET temperatures from 1660 to 1750. The 45-year span from 1692 to 1737 is highlighted in red.

If the trends for all three 90-year data sets are compared, they are nearly identical, from 0.084 to 0.091°C per decade warming.

But the 45-year span from 1692 to 1737 was warming at nearly five times that rate, 0.4°C per decade. This warming rate is more than twice as fast as the late twentieth century rate, for twice as long.

Central England warmed by two degrees, three degrees if one measures from the coldest year to the warmest in that interval. For comparison, here is the GHCN data for the modern period.

Figure 2 is the modern era from GHCN with the modern warming in red and the early twentieth century warming in green.

Please note that I have picked the time period with the most warming in that interval, including from the bottom of the 1976 La Niña to the top of the 1998 El Niño. The early twentieth century warming began with the 1914-15 El Niño. If the El Niño and La Niña events are removed, both warming periods have a trend of about 0.16°C per decade. The 0.4°C/decade warming period from 1692 to 1737 must have been very scary for the eighteenth century climatologists.

It all came to an abrupt end, however, in 1739 and 1740. The temperature dropped three degrees practically overnight in climate terms. See figure 1. What caused that? A volcano!

On the southern end of Hokkaido, in Japan, there is a large caldera called Shikotsu. It is now filled with a lake. This caldera was formed about 35,000 years ago. On the edge of the caldera three volcanic vents have been intermittently active since then. One of those, Tarumai, (or Tarumae) is active to this day, including four VE5, very large eruptions in 6950 BCE, 800 BCE, 1667, and 1739. Though both the 1667 and 1739 eruptions were classed as VE5, the 1739 event pushed enough gas into the stratosphere to affect global climate.

“In the northern hemisphere density of yearly tree ring [sic] have changed in AD 1740 (Briffa et al., 1998) suggesting the eruption of 1739 affected global climate.”

Sheveluch, on Kamchatka, is also implicated, but that eruption was only a VE3.

The resulting cold caused the “Great Irish Frost” of 1740, where Irish harbors and rivers froze over, preventing import of grain, frost killed the potato crop, and 20 to 30% of the Irish population died of cold and famine. The cold affected all of northern Europe, but was a disaster for Ireland due to the politics of the time. For a scholarly treatise on it see The Irish famine of 1740–1741: famine vulnerability and “climate migration”, here. The implication is that the good years prior to 1740, made Ireland in particular, vulnerable to a cold snap. This is the thing to be feared in our future rather than continued warming.


British Households could be charged annual ‘insurance premium’ for access to electricity grid

Every UK household could have to pay an annual “insurance premium” for access to the UK electricity grid, under plans to overhaul the way networks are paid for.

Energy regulator Ofgem is worried that people who can afford to install solar panels and generate their own power for much of the day may end up not paying their fair share of the costs of the UK’s electricity pylons and cables.

Dermot Nolan, chief executive, told the Telegraph the question of how to charge for networks in an equitable way a “huge challenge” facing the UK energy system in coming years. Currently, the cost of maintaining and upgrading the networks is factored into the prices energy suppliers charge for electricity, accounting for about £140 a year on a typical household bill.

Households that install their own panels will need to buy less electricity, so will avoid paying as much toward the costs of the network.

“One of the biggest challenges for the country in energy… is how will you charge for the grid in that kind of situation?”

Mr Nolan said the regulator was thinking about the issue “pretty intensively” and had not yet decided the solution. However, he said one option would be for households to “basically pay an insurance premium for access to the grid”.

Mr Nolan said the issue would be “difficult” to resolve as “people might feel ‘I’ll pay it when I need it’” but this would not reflect “the fact there is an infrastructure there and you have to pay for it”.


Rebutting Climate Alarmism with Simple Facts

The answers below are not necessarily the ones I ewould give but they should be useful nonetheless -- JR

What to do if you don’t believe that man-made emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) are causing a global warming catastrophe? Here are some ready-made responses, the next time someone questions you.

Q. You don’t believe in global warming?

Yes, I do. The earth has warmed by roughly 0.8 degrees Celsius over the past century or so.

Q. You don’t believe in climate change?

Yes, I do. The earth’s climate has changed several times, just in the past 1,000 years.

Q. CO2 levels are rising and the earth is warming.

Carbon dioxide concentrations have risen from roughly 0.028% of the earth’s atmosphere in the late 1800s to the current 0.040%. However, solar output has also increased significantly in that time. If the correlation between solar variability and the climate swings of the past few thousand years is any indication, this rise in solar activity offers a valid explanation for the overall increase in temperatures seen over the past century.

Q. Solar activity and temperature trends don’t match up in recent years.

Solar activity actually peaked somewhere around the middle of the 20th Century, and at elevated levels not seen since the Medieval Warm Period (1,000 years ago) or the Roman Warm Period (1,800 years ago.) Solar activity remained at this high level through the start of the 21st Century, with temperatures rising at the same time. While the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) claims that changes in solar “irradiance” have little impact on climate, other research argues that accompanying variations in the solar wind and solar magnetic field contribute significantly to changes in global climate. In fact, Russian scientists studying solar variability now worry that declining solar activity could lead to globally cooler temperatures by 2030.

Q. But CO2 levels are the highest in 800,000 years.

CO2 levels in the atmosphere are currently among the lowest ever recorded in the earth’s long history. The past 800,000 years is a convenient timeframe to cite, however, since the earth has undergone repeated glacial cycles in that time—which has reduced atmospheric CO2.

Q. CO2 is a greenhouse gas. More CO2 means more warming.

CO2 possesses a major limitation as a greenhouse gas, and one that casts doubt on its ability to function as the sole agent of climate change. As demonstrated in laboratory studies, CO2 exponentially loses heat-trapping capacity as its concentration increases. This happens because, even in minuscule quantities, CO2 quickly becomes opaque to a certain spectrum band of infrared radiation. Essentially, CO2 rapidly absorbs all of the infrared radiation it can. Adding additional quantities of CO2 to the atmosphere will not contribute much additional heat-trapping function. CO2 is also a “well-mixed gas,” which means that its concentrations are distributed throughout the atmosphere. Consequently, its heat-trapping function is essentially reaching a saturation point throughout the troposphere and stratosphere.

Q. But higher CO2 levels mean higher temperatures. I saw that graph in “An Inconvenient Truth.”

Al Gore left out a key point when citing the parallel relationship between historical levels of atmospheric CO2 and temperature. Carbon dioxide dissolves in water, with cold water able to hold more CO2 than warm water. When the climate cools, the oceans cool—and draw in more CO2 from the atmosphere. When the climate warms, as seen at the start of the most recent interglacial period (roughly 18,000 years ago), the oceans gradually warm, releasing CO2 into the atmosphere. (A good visualization for this is a bottle of soda kept in hot sunlight. If the temperature rises high enough, the bottle will leak or burst— because the warmer soda water is no longer able to hold all of the dissolved CO2.) The point is, when global temperatures change, atmospheric CO2 inevitably follows along.

Q. Scientists say that CO2 is warming the earth.

Yes, CO2 is a greenhouse gas, and it helps to maintain warmth in the atmosphere. But as noted above, CO2’s heat-trapping function is essentially saturated by the current level of 0.04%. Furthermore, climate models actually project that most of the presumed “man-made” warming will come from an increase in atmospheric water vapor. The principal idea of “anthropogenic global warming” (AGW) is that the small amount of additional warming contributed by CO2 (before it becomes saturated) will cause more water vapor to enter the atmosphere. Since water vapor is the primary greenhouse gas of the atmosphere (and is responsible for roughly 80% of the “greenhouse effect”), this water vapor will create “positive feedback” for further warming. Unfortunately, the AGW theory essentially disregards the cooling feedback caused by clouds (since atmospheric water vapor inevitably transitions to cloud cover.) Clouds provide net cooling by reflecting solar radiation back into space, shading ground surfaces, and producing rain (which not only cools surface temperatures but also scrubs atmospheric CO2.)

Q. But 97% of scientists believe in global warming.

What’s most amusing is that, truthfully, no one really knows how many scientists there are in the world. Or what they all think about global warming. Or how many of them work in relevant scientific disciplines. However, the “97% consensus” is a flawed statement. Only 32.6% of the papers examined in the infamous John Cook study actually stated a position endorsing anthropogenic global warming. However, 97% of those said that “recent warming is mostly man-made.” And so what we have is a misleading statement that has become misrepresented and cited as fact. (Interestingly, there is a website called The Petition Project that lists more than 30,000 scientists who have publicly declared their disagreement with the theory of catastrophic man-made warming.)

Q. 2015 was the hottest year ever, and now 2016 is even hotter.

The warm temperatures experienced in 2015-2016 are the direct result of a strong El Nino.

Q. El Nino is caused by global warming.

El Nino is a naturally occurring phenomenon. It happens when prevailing winds start to fade after several years of progressively “piling up” water in the western Pacific Ocean. This surplus, warm water washes back over the eastern Pacific, releasing tremendous amounts of heat. 2015’s spike in temperatures was due to El Nino. It would be dishonest and inaccurate to claim that 2015’s increase in surface temperatures was simply due to man-made warming. And even climate “alarmists” admit that El Nino is not a manifestation of man-made warming.

Q. The “pause in global temperatures” is just people denying that the earth is getting hotter and hotter.

Satellite measurements from both UAH-Huntsville and RSS clearly show a “pause” in global temperatures (I.e. a net flatlining of temperatures) over the past 15-20 years. As the current El Nino fades, it’s reasonable to expect a resumption of recent global temperatures. More significantly, the “pause” has been the subject of numerous debates and research papers. Climate alarmists don’t deny that it has happened, and instead offer varying explanations. Even Michael Mann, creator of the infamous “Hockey Stick” graph, says that the pause occurred and was not foreseeable.

Q. NOAA says there’s no “pause” in global warming.

There is legitimate concern as to the accuracy and reliability of recent temperature measurements being reported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA.) Last year, NOAA reported adjustments to global temperature records that suddenly “erased” the pause. I.e. Earlier decades were revised to be “cooler,” while recent years were suddenly marked as “warmer” by factoring in measurements that included seawater temperature readings from the engine manifolds of ocean-going vessels. Various academic papers have debunked NOAA’s “new” temperature findings, but NOAA’s revised measurements continue to be used to make claims such as “warmest year ever.” The questionable methods utilized by NOAA to assemble its “pause buster” study are now the subject of a Congressional investigation.

Q. But the oceans are becoming acidic.

The oceans remain comfortably alkaline, as they have for millions of years. As noted above, atmospheric CO2 levels have typically ranged far higher throughout the earth’s history, yet the oceans never became acidic. In fact, if they had, submarine fossil layers would have readily dissolved. Claims of the ocean “becoming acidic” are actually a misrepresentation of variations in the ocean’s pH scale. Seawater has typically measured roughly 8.18 on the pH scale. Recent, pH levels of 8.10 have been noted, which would mean slightly less alkaline oceans. But it’s misleading to say that the oceans are “becoming acidic,” particularly when ocean pH often varies greatly, based on season and location.

Q. But the glaciers are melting.

Even NASA has stated that Antarctica’s ice cover is growing, not shrinking.

Q. But there are more hurricanes and more tornadoes.

The U.S. has reached a record 127 months without a major hurricane. The U.S. is also at its lowest 3-year tornado total since 1950.

Q. But we need to cut dangerous carbon pollution.

The “carbon pollution” you hear so much about is carbon dioxide, also known as CO2. It’s what all animals (including humans) breathe out, and what plants absorb. In fact, rising CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere have led to a progressive “greening” of global plant life in recent decades. Because atmospheric CO2 is at such historically low levels, the world’s plants and oceanic phytoplankton are currently rejoicing in this slightly more abundant supply of nourishment.

To conclude, it’s helpful to study the basic issues involved in the climate debate (as well as recent geologic history) when considering various aspects of global warming.


Far from bleached, reef’s in the pink

West Australian coral is doing fine while Queensland (Eastern) coral is extensively bleached.  So any pretense that the Queensland situation is part of a global phenomenon is at least dubious.  There's some very confused thinking about El Nino and La Nina below.  The journalist appears to have the two mixed up

Scientists have discovered that the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Reef off the West Australian coast — the largest fringing reef in Australia — has escaped any recent coral bleaching and that some areas are in the same condition as 30 years ago.

CSIRO ecologist Damian Thomson said yesterday a major study of the reef that ended this month had found that Ningaloo was unaffected by the current bleaching "event” that has hit Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef and other reefs off WA’s northern coast.

He said the research — funded by CSIRO and BHP Billiton through a $5.4 million partnership — showed Ningaloo was more resilient than expected.

"It’s really pleasing that Ningaloo hasn’t undergone any bleaching — it’s fantastic news actually,” Mr Thompson said.

The clean bill of health will be welcomed by the tourism industry around Exmouth, a town ­reliant on thousands of visitors visiting the reef every year ­between April and July to snorkel with migrating whale sharks. Later this year, tourists will also be able to swim with humpback whales, which is expected to double the length of Exmouth’s $6m tourist season.

Conservationists are worried about the human impact on the reef and have also raised concerns in recent years about ­increased oil and gas exploration — including by BHP — close to Ningaloo Marine Park.

Mr Thomson said while coral bleaching remained a possible future threat to the reef, the sheer number of people visiting the area was its major challenge.

"It’s a relatively small tract of reef when you look at the extent of the Australian coastline, but the number of people that love holidaying there or going there for other activities, it is very well used. That is probably the main challenge, managing that.”

Mr Thomson said bleaching tended to occur on Australia’s west coast during La Nina years, when strong currents from ­Indonesia pushed warm water south to Ningaloo. But during the recent El Nino, those strong currents had not ­occurred, ­resulting in cooler waters.

CSIRO research surveyed 70 sites at Ningaloo and found no coral bleached at locations where bleaching was recorded in 2010. At Osprey, on the western part of Ningaloo, results were as good as those taken in 1987. Ningaloo was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2011 for its biological diversity and conservation significance.

The findings are for the first year of field work undertaken by the Ningaloo Outlook project, which aims to increase the ­ecological understanding of the reefs.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


29 May, 2016

Climate change could destroy Statue of Liberty, Venice and many other parts of the world's heritage, UN report warns

And pigs could fly. There is NO evidence for any of the prophecies below.  It is just speculation based on global warming theory -- a theory with so many holes in it, it might as well be a sieve. 

The present day events described are just cherry-picking.  One could easily pick other events leading to the opposite conclusion -- like the fact that the world's biggest body of glacial ice -- Antarctica --  is INCREASING in size, suggesting a future sea-level FALL.  Or how about Munshi's demonstration that the increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere are NOT the result of burning coal and oil? 

You cannot prove a generalization by picking a few bits of data here and there.  You need statistics that cover ALL events of the type discussed.  And sea level rise is not ordinarily detectable in most of the world

The Statue of Liberty and many of the world’s most important heritage sites could soon be destroyed by global warming, the UN has warned.

Historic sites including Orkney and the world’s most important coral reefs already feeling the effect of the increasing temperatures and climate disruption that is coming with global warming. But that same trend could completely destroy them and other parts of the world’s heritage, according to a new report.

The danger shows the “urgent and clear” need to address climbing temperatures to protect many parts of the world’s heritage, according to the report, which was compiled by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), UN heritage body Unesco and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

The study took in 31 natural and cultural World Heritage sites, spread across 29 countries. It looked at the ways that the effects of climate change – including intense weather and damage to animal’s habitats – would effect them in the future.

Climate change will - or is already - exacerbating problems faced by some of the world's most famous and popular heritage sites, such as the Galapagos Islands, which helped Charles Darwin form his theory of evolution, the study found.

Threats to the unique wildlife caused by 205,000 visitors a year, invasive species and illegal fishing are now being joined by rising seas, warming and more acidic oceans and extreme weather.

In the UK, at Stonehenge, warmer winters are likely to boost populations of burrowing animals that could disturb archaeological deposits and destabilise stonework.

Hotter drier summers could increase visitor numbers and change the plant species which stabilise the chalk downlands, causing more soil erosion, while Stonehenge, Avebury and Silbury Hill face increased rainfall and flash floods.

More severe problems threaten the Heart of Neolithic Orkney World Heritage site, where many archaeological sites are on the coast due to the importance of the sea in Stone Age life, and at least half are under threat from coastal erosion

Five-thousand-year-old Skara Brae, the best-preserved Stone Age dwelling complex in Western Europe with houses and stone furniture, is the most high profile site at risk of eventual loss of coastal erosion, the study said.

Lead author of the report and deputy director of the climate and energy programme at UCS, Adam Markham, said: "Orkney and the whole of Scotland is the poster child for eroding archaeology sites.

"There are thousands of them and many of them are being lost to coastal erosion and storms.

"If sea level rise and storms get worse because of global warming then we are going to be losing huge amounts of British heritage directly into the sea," he warned.

Other sites around the world that are at risk from coastal erosion include Easter Island, with its famous head statues, many of which are situated close to the sea, he said.

The Grand Canal in Venice by sunset. © Getty Images The Grand Canal in Venice by sunset. Elsewhere sites which bring in important tourism revenue could be particularly badly hit, such as Uganda's Bwindi Impenetrable National Park where rising temperatures could affect the habitat of endangered mountain gorillas.

Mr Markham said: "The report is representative of the kind of threats these iconic places are experiencing, some are in direct and immediate danger.

"At every one of these sites we can see the impacts of climate change already. Not in every place is it threatening it yet but it will threaten it in the future."

New York's Statue of Liberty was badly hit by Hurricane Sandy, with £68 million given for repairs and protection to the area, while more intense hurricanes are expected with climate change and sea level rises likely to cause more significant storm surges.

And Venice, with its extraordinary Byzantine, gothic, renaissance and baroque architecture, is under immediate threat from rising sea levels and work to protect it from flooding has cost £4 billion, the report said.

Mechtild Rossler, director of Unesco's World Heritage Centre, said: "Globally, we need to better understand, monitor and address climate change threats to World Heritage sites.

"As the report's findings underscore, achieving the Paris Agreement's goal of limiting global temperature rise to a level well below 2C is vitally important to protecting our world heritage for current and future generations."


It takes The Donald

Republican presumptive presidential nominee, Donald Trump, acknowledges love from a fan while speaking to 7,500 people at the Williston Basin Petroleum Conference in Bismarck on Thursday. Trump, whose support from North Dakota national convention delegates put him over the top for securing the party’s nomination earlier Thursday, told the crowd he’d eliminate regulation he says is killing the fossil fuel industry as well as be favorable to additional pipeline projects and exports of American oil.

Trump, whose support from North Dakota national convention delegates put him over the top for securing the party’s nomination earlier in the day, told the crowd he’d eliminate regulation he says is killing the fossil fuel industry as well as be favorable to additional pipeline projects and exports of American oil.

Thunderous applause greeted Trump’s declaration that in his administration there’d be an “America-first energy plan.”

“We will accomplish a complete American energy independence,” Trump said. “We’re going to turn everything around. We are going to make it right.”

He thanked the North Dakota delegates for putting him over the top. “I will always remember that,” Trump said.

For those hoping to witness a dose of the sharp rhetoric that’s been a staple of his unconventional and eyebrow-raising campaign, he didn’t disappoint.

Trump vowed to reverse the energy policy of President Barack Obama’s administration, which he said has been devastating to industry and inflicted pain on states such as North Dakota that rely heavily on the energy sector.

“If President Obama wanted to weaken America, he couldn’t have done a better job,” Trump said.

Among the policies he’d push to undo is the Environmental Protection Agency’s emissions rules targeting coal-fired power plants. The U.S. Supreme Court earlier this year voted 5-4 to halt implementation of the rules governing new and existing power plants for now.

“How stupid is that?” Trump said of the emissions rules.

He also slammed the Environment Protection Agency’s Waters of the United State rule, which he said would cause significant damage to American energy production and kill jobs.

Trump had the crowd in the palm of his hand, a sea of people dotted with Trump hats and shirts with his campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again.” He drew wave after wave of raucous applause when outlining how optimistic he is at the prospect of North Dakota and the country’s energy future.

“You’re at the forefront of a new energy revolution,” said Trump, adding that the country has unlocked energy reserves previously unimaginable with new technologies, such as hydraulic fracturing. “We’re loaded. We had no idea how rich we are.”

The first 100 days of a potential Trump administration also riled up the crowd: He said he’d rescind executive orders by Obama that he believes are job killers as well as work to eliminate the emissions and water rules.

When considering any federal regulations, Trump said his litmus test would be simple.

“Is this regulation good for the American worker?” Trump said.

Those who heard Trump speak gave his speech an enthusiastic thumbs-up.

“I think from what we see on TV he had a much more detailed presentation. He was really well-informed on the issues,” Whitney Bell, of New Town, said.

Bell said the crowd was fantastic and responded well to Trump's message, which he reiterated was more detailed than mere sound-bites.

Jason Bohrer, president of the Lignite Energy Council, said he was impressed with Trump’s focus on deregulation.

“I heard what I wanted to hear and more. Trump is a different kind of politician; he communicates in a way that a lot of other people don’t,” Bohrer said.

North Dakota Petroleum Council President Ron Ness said he was thrilled by how the speech went as well as the overwhelming reaction from the crowd.

“I’ve been to a lot of Class B state championships in this building; this was equal to that,” Ness said. “The energy just rolled in.”

Ness said his America-first message resonated with people and he expects it to become a staple of his campaign.

“That speech was loaded with specifics. He backed that up with a lot of numbers. I didn’t hear anything that isn’t achievable,” Ness said.

Trump tapped Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., earlier this month to help in providing him with energy policy advice. Cramer wrote a white paper on energy policy relating to federal regulations, the importance of the fossil fuel industry and other topics, which hasn’t yet been released.

Cramer was one of the first members of Congress to openly endorse Trump prior to his last opponents dropping out of the race.

North Dakota Republican Party chairman Kelly Armstrong said he heard what he needed to hear from Trump on eliminating government regulations, reducing taxes and protecting the energy industry. As chairman, Armstrong is one of North Dakota’s 28 delegates to the national Republican Party convention July 18-21 in Cleveland.

“Tremendously good for the people of North Dakota,” Armstrong said of Trump’s positions.


Independent Scientists WARN: ‘Most Currently Published Research Findings Are FALSE…’

“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of [The New] England Journal of Medicine” — These are the words of Dr. Marcia Angell, a physician and longtime editor-in-chief of The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), which is considered to be one of the most prestigious peer-reviewed science journals in the world.

psi 1The Lancet, another top, well respected peer-reviewed medical journal also publishes research findings that are unreliable and many times false. The current editor-in-chief, Dr. Richard Horton recently spoke out about the fake science often published in the prestigious medical journal. “The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness,” he warns, as reported by

Many of the industry-sponsored studies being published today are used to promote new drugs and vaccines. One thing is for sure: Money has its influence on “science.” To make matters worse, what ultimately gets published and promoted is what is ultimately believed by medical professionals.

The most disturbing realization about today’s leading published “science” is that it’s leaving out important information from the public. Dr. Horton points this out, extensively. This scientific fraud exists in the most prestigious peer-reviewed medical journals, and it’s been going on for decades. He has observed instances where data is manipulated to promote a particular theory. He says there’s hardly any accountability when bad practices are used. He even calls himself out for being part of the problem, aiding and abetting some of the worst behaviors.

It’s not just theory. Lucija Tomljenovic, PhD, from the Neural Dynamics Research Group in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences at the University of British Columbia, reveals that pharmaceutical companies and vaccine manufacturers explicitly know about multiple dangers with their products but that information is withheld from the public.

In her research paper, “The vaccination policy and the Code of Practice of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI): are they at odds?” Tomljenovic reveals eight disturbing assertions obtained from documented meetings between 1983 and 2010 involving the UK Department of Health (DH) and the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

For many years, the two health authorities have been engaged in “Deliberately concealing information from the parents for the sole purpose of getting them to comply with an ‘official’ vaccination schedule.” Lucija Tomljenovic points out that this “could thus be considered as a form of ethical violation or misconduct.”

“Instead of reacting appropriately by re-examining existing vaccination policies when safety concerns over specific vaccines were identified by their own investigations,” Tomljenovic points out, the “JCVI either a) took no action, b) skewed or selectively removed unfavourable safety data from public reports and c) made intensive efforts to reassure both the public and the authorities in the safety of respective vaccines.”

The fraudulent methods by which drug and vaccine research is conducted and published is appalling. Peer-reviewed studies consistently downplay safety concerns of new drugs while over-inflating vaccine benefits. Even though many vaccines have “unresolved safety issues,” they are pushed just so health authorities can increase vaccination rates. This is clearly not scientific or in the public interest.

The drug makers would like you to think that you are deficient and in need of their formulations, but you are not their property, and you are not their experiment.


Party of Science?

The argument over Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) has exposed an interesting method of delegitimizing opposing points of view. For many supporters of AGW, “the science is settled” because 97% of scientists have decreed man-caused catastrophic climate change to be stone-cold fact (despite overwhelming evidence of fraud, data manipulation and deceit .)

Yes, they have “SCIENCE!” on their side and only a fool or a Luddite would argue with “SCIENCE!” Therefore, if you disagree with them, you are, by definition, a fool and your argument can simply be ignored.

It’s an incredibly simplistic, yet effective tactic. By assuming the mantle of the “Party of Science”, they attempt to claim the intellectual high-ground , making their beliefs beyond reproach. How could anyone argue against the facts unless they deny “SCIENCE!”?

Lately, however, “SCIENCE!” seems to have taken a back seat to “feelings”, as these “Party of Science” members repeatedly deny honest-to-goodness science in deference to their agenda. A few examples:


For years, we’ve been told that fracking is hazardous to the environment. The process of fracturing shale rock miles below the surface of the earth to increase oil production has driven many of the “Party of Science” into fits. Movies have been made decrying this “evil practice” and professing to show the harm this process does to ground water. Of course, those movies are nothing more than Michael Moore-esque agitprop, virtually devoid of anything that approaches actual facts.

But that does not stop such high-ranking members of the “Party of Science” as New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, as he continues to uphold his ban on fracking in his state, to the detriment of his state’s economy and citizens, even in the face of a federal report showing that that it is not harmful.

Recently, the University of Cincinnati completed a three-year study into the potential harm of fracking to local water supplies. The results? There is absolutely no evidence that fracking contaminates local ground water whatsoever. Great news, right? Well, not to those who funded the study.

Under pressure from the backers of the study, the University will not release the results. According to lead researcher Amy Townsend-Small, “our funders, the groups that had given us funding in the past, were a little disappointed in our results. They feel that fracking is scary and so they were hoping our data could point to a reason to ban it.”


Women in Combat:

In a move referred to as “another historic step forward”, Defense Secretary Ash Carter ruled that women would now be allowed to serve in all combat roles in the US Military, including front-line roles. The stated reason for this decision was to increase the potential pool of people upon which to draw to fill these roles. The unstated reason, of course, is to increase diversity within our armed forces, whether it makes sense to do so or not.

And, of course, it doesn’t make sense. Recently, both the US Army and the US Marine Corps conducted studies to determine the impact that women serving in front-line combat positions would have on those combat units. The results showed that, while some women can perform at or above the minimally required levels currently in place, the overall effectiveness of the combat unit is dramatically reduced.

Well, to be fair, that was the result of the Marine Corps’ study. It turns out that the Marines, as they tend to do, took their job seriously and actually performed comprehensive and complete testing, in accordance with the Department of Defense’s required methodology. And then released the full and complete report for analysis.

The Marine Corps study has been and continues to be ignored.

The US Army’s study, however, came back with the politically desired results. But soon after that study was released, it was discovered that the women in their tests were given extra training, special treatment, and were held to lower standards. When the details of this now-questionable study were requested by Congressman Steve Russell (R-OK), a former Army Ranger, he was informed, after weeks of delay, that the records had been destroyed. Convenient, don’t you think?

But how old-fashioned to think that facts should mean anything when the “Party of Science” knows what’s best for us. Putting women in front line combat roles is fair and diverse and stuff. So what if it puts all of our military men and women at a greater risk?

Minimum Wage Laws:

The push for a so-called “living wage” has become almost a mantra among the “Party of Science” crowd. Someone, somewhere, somehow decided that $15/hour is a “living wage.” Where that number came from is still a mystery, but who cares? #Fightfor15! #LivingWages!

And as fun as it has been to watch rich, well-positioned politicians and other members of the community formerly known as “reality-based” pretend to live on what they assume to be starvation wages (“oh my, when did the price of dried kiwi and quinoa become so high?”), this fight is causing real harm in the real world.

For example, the city of Seattle, WA recently implemented a $15 minimum wage. The result? Huge job losses inside the Seattle city limits, compared to huge job growth in the surrounding communities. Also, business growth inside Seattle has slowed to a crawl, while it is booming elsewhere. So instead of helping low wage earners, higher minimum wages actually hurts them. Who could have seen that coming?

And it will only get worse. Businesses that normally depend on unskilled and younger workers are looking at automation, in order to reduce their staffing needs. Yes, Virginia, when it costs less to buy a machine to do your job than it does to hire you, business owners will buy the machine.

It is interesting to note that some “Party of Science” members do recognize their cognitive dissonance.  As he signed into law an increase in the California’s minimum wage, Gov. Jerry Brown freely admitted that higher minimum wages are not economically viable. But who cares about that? It makes sense morally and politically! (Try saying that from the unemployment line as opposed to the Governor’s mansion.)

Genetically modified crops are safe. Party of Science doesn’t care. Vaccines do not cause autism. Party of Science doesn’t care. Gender identity is not fluid and transgenderism is a psychological disorder similar to anorexia and should be treated as such. Not so, says the Party of Science, and you shall not only accept, but celebrate the choices made by these brave yet tortured souls.

I could try to analyze why so many people work so hard to make the rest of us reject reality for their fantasies, but I think the motivation behind this effort was explained quite brilliantly many years ago:

“You believe that reality is something objective, external, existing in its own right. You also believe that the nature of reality is self-evident. When you delude yourself into thinking that you see something, you assume that everyone else sees the same thing as you. But I tell you, Winston, that reality is not external. Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else. Not in the individual mind, which can make mistakes, and in any case soon perishes: only in the mind of the Party, which is collective and immortal. Whatever the Party holds to be the truth, is truth. It is impossible to see reality except by looking through the eyes of the Party. That is the fact that you have got to relearn, Winston. It needs an act of self- destruction, an effort of the will. You must humble yourself before you can become sane.” – O’Brien (George Orwell – ‘1984’)


Bill Nye the Scientism Guy

Facts don’t support his hypothesis, so he shouts louder, changes subjects and attacks his critics

Willie Soon and István Markó

True science requires that data, observations and other evidence support a hypothesis – and that it can withstand withering analysis and criticism – or the hypothesis is wrong.

That’s why Albert Einstein once joked, “If the facts don’t fit your theory, change the facts.” When informed that scientists who rejected his theory of relativity had published a pamphlet, 100 authors against Einstein, he replied: “Why 100? If I were wrong, one would be enough.”

In the realm of climate scientism, the rule seems to be: If the facts don’t support your argument, talk louder, twist the facts, and insult your opponents. That’s certainly what self-styled global warming “experts” like Al Gore and Bill Nye are doing. Rather than debating scientists who don’t accept false claims that humans are causing dangerous climate change, they just proclaim more loudly:

Our theory explains everything that’s happening. Hotter or colder temperatures, wetter or drier weather, less ice in the Arctic, more ice in Antarctica – it’s all due to fossil fuel use.

Climate scientism aggressively misrepresents facts, refuses to discuss energy and climate issues with anyone who points out massive flaws in the manmade climate chaos hypothesis, bullies anyone who won’t condemn carbon dioxide, and brands them as equivalent to Holocaust Deniers.

In a recent Huffington Post article, Mr. Nye “challenges climate change deniers” by claiming, “The science of global warming is long settled, and one may wonder why the United States, nominally the most technologically advanced country in the world, is not the world leader in addressing the threats.” 

Perhaps it’s not so settled. When the Australian government recently shifted funds from studying climate change to addressing threats that might result, 275 research jobs were imperiled. The very scientists who’d been saying there was a 97% consensus howled that there really wasn’t one. Climate change is very complex, they cried (which is true), and much more work must be done if we are to provide more accurate temperature predictions, instead of wild forecasts based on CO2 emissions (also true).

Perhaps Mr. Nye and these Australian researchers should discuss what factors other than carbon dioxide actually cause climate and weather fluctuations. They may also encounter other revelations: that climate science is still young and anything but settled; that we have little understanding of what caused major ice ages, little ice ages, warm periods in between and numerous other events throughout the ages; that computer model predictions thus far have been little better than tarot card divinations.

As for Nye’s assertions that “carbon dioxide has an enormous effect on planetary temperatures” and “climate change was discovered in recent times by comparing the Earth to the planet Venus” – those are truly bizarre, misleading, vacuous claims.

The relatively rapid increase in atmospheric CO2 over the last 30 years has produced only 0.2°C (0.4°F) of global warming – compared to a 1°C (1.8°F) total temperature increase over the past 150 years. That means the planetary temperature increase has slowed down, as carbon dioxide levels rose. In fact, average temperatures have barely budged for nearly 19 years, an inconvenient reality that even the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) now recognizes.

This is an “enormous effect”? By now, it is increasingly clear, the proper scientific conclusion is that the “greenhouse effect” of rising atmospheric carbon dioxide is very minor – as a recent article explains. Mr. Nye and his fans and fellow activists could learn a lot from it.

Objective readers, and even Mr. Nye, would also profit from reading a rather devastating critique of one of The Scientism Guy’s “science-is-easy” demonstrations. It concludes that the greenhouse effect of CO2 molecules is of course real, but Mr. Nye’s clever experiment for Al Gore’s “Climate Reality Project” was the result of “video fakery” and “could never work” as advertised. When will Messrs. Nye and Gore stop peddling their Hollywood special effects?

For that matter, when will they stop playing inter-planetary games? Mr. Nye and the popular media love to tell us that carbon dioxide from oil, gas and coal could soon turn Planet Earth into another Venus: over-heated, barren, rocky and lifeless. Princeton Institute of Advanced Study Professors Freeman Dyson and Will Happer show that this is utter nonsense.

For one thing, Venus is far closer to the sun, so it is subjected to far more solar heat, gravitational pull and surface pressure than Earth is. “If we put a sunshade shielding Venus from sunlight,” Dr. Dyson notes, “it would only take 500 years for its surface to cool down and its atmosphere to condense into a carbon dioxide ocean.” It’s not the high temperature that makes Venus permanently unfriendly to life, he adds; it’s the lack of water.

Second, the amounts of atmospheric carbon dioxide are grossly disproportionate. Earth has barely 0.04% carbon dioxide (by volume) in its atmosphere, whereas Venus has 97% and Mars has 95% CO2. Mars much greater distance from the sun also means it has an average surface temperature of -60°C (-80°F) –underscoring yet again how absurd it is to use planetary comparisons to stoke climate change fears.

Third, Earth’s atmosphere used to contain far more carbon dioxide. “For most of the past 550 million years of the Phanerozoic, when multicellular life left a good fossil record, the earth’s CO2 levels were four times, even ten times, higher than now,” Dr. Happer points out. “Yet life flourished on land and in the oceans. Earth never came close to the conditions of Venus.” And it never will.

Fourth, Venus’s much closer proximity to the sun means it receives about twice as much solar flux (radiant energy) as the Earth does: 2637 Watts per square meter versus 1367, Happer explains. The IPCC says doubling atmospheric CO2 concentrations would be equivalent to just 15 W/m2 of additional solar flux. That’s nearly 100 times less than what Venus gets from being closer to the Sun.

Fifth, surface pressure on Venus is about 90 times that of the Earth, and strong convection forces increase the heating of surface air, he continues, making Venus’s surface even hotter. However, dense sulfuric acid clouds prevent most solar heat from ever reaching the planet’s surface. Instead, they reflect most sunlight back into space, which is “one of the reasons Venus is such a lovely morning or evening ‘star.’” 

Of course, none of these nerdy details about Earth-Venus differences really matter. We already know plant life on Planet Earth loved the higher CO2 levels that prevailed during the Carboniferous Age and other times when plants enjoyed extraordinary growth.

However, even burning all the economically available fossil fuels would not likely even double current atmospheric CO2 levels – to just 0.08% carbon dioxide, compared to 21% oxygen, 78% nitrogen, 0.9% argon and 0.1% for all other gases except water vapor. And doubling CO2 would get us away from the near-famine levels for plants that have prevailed for the past tens of millions of years.

Carbon dioxide is absolutely essential for plant growth – and for all life on Earth. Volumes of research clearly demonstrate that crop, garden, forest, grassland and ocean plants want more CO2, not less. The increased greening of our Earth over the past 30 years testifies to the desperate need of plants for this most fundamental fertilizer. The more CO2 they get, the better and faster they grow.

More than 70% of the oxygen present in the atmosphere – and without which we could never live – originates from phytoplankton absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. Keep this in mind when Bill Nye The Junk Science Guy tells you carbon dioxide is bad for our oceans and climate.

Dr. Willie Soon is an independent scientist who has been studying the Sun and Earth’s climate for 26 years. Dr. István Markó is a professor of chemistry at the Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium and director of the Organic and Medicinal Chemistry Laboratory.

Via email

Australia’s secret ETS starts in five weeks

Quietly, surprisingly, Australia’s climate change policy has become a bipartisan emissions trading scheme, or ETS … well, almost. The parties might try to manufacture differences for the election campaign, although they haven’t yet, and anyway they don’t really exist.

From July 1, coincidentally the day before the election, the Coalition’s “safeguard mechanism” within its Direct Action Plan will come into force.

One-hundred and fifty companies, representing about 50 per cent of Australia’s total carbon emissions, will be capped by legislation at their highest level of emissions between 2009-10 and 2013-14.

If they emit less than their caps, they will get credits, called Australian Carbon Credit Units (ACCUs), which were created by the Gillard government’s 2011 legislation; if they emit more, they have to buy ACCUs on the market.

The caps specifically include the electricity sector and the ACCUs are “financial products” under both the Corporations Act and the ASIC Act, and can be traded, so an ETS market will be established from July 1.

It is, in short, a classic cap-and-trade ETS, similar in effect to the one legislated by the ALP in 2011, but which unwisely started with a fixed price that could be labelled a carbon tax, and was repealed on July 17, 2014 by the Abbott government, with high-fives and champagne.

What hasn’t been announced or included in the Coalition’s legislation yet is that the caps will start to be reduced from next year, which will make it even more similar in some ways to the Gillard government’s Clean Energy Act 2011.

The legislation that included the Coalition’s ETS was passed by the Senate — with the support of both the ALP and the Greens — on its last day of sitting in 2015, in December.

As it happens, that was the day before the Paris climate conference, called COP 21, got underway, at which an agreement to keep the global temperature increase to 2 degrees was signed by 189 countries, including Australia.

The emissions caps imposed on 150 companies are described by the government as a “safeguard mechanism” to support the Emissions Reduction Fund that is the centrepiece of the Direct Action Plan, in which companies bid at auction for the right to be paid to reduce their emissions. Those auctions have so far resulted in 143 million tonnes of abatement at an average price of $12.10 per tonne, which is much lower than had been forecast by the scheme’s opponents.

The Department of Environment’s website says: “The safeguard mechanism will protect taxpayers’ funds by ensuring that emissions reductions paid for through the crediting and purchasing elements of the Emissions Reduction Fund are not displaced by significant increases in emissions above business-as-usual levels elsewhere in the economy.”

But depending on the gradient of cap reduction that is decided next year, the safeguard itself could end up becoming the central pillar of Australia’s response to the Paris agreement.

That’s because the government almost certainly can’t afford to pay for enough abatement under the auction system to meet its Paris commitments, given the state of the budget.

In fact, the safeguard mechanism becomes a way for the government — Coalition or Labor — to adjust the budget deficit: reducing the “safeguard” caps faster would reduce the amount that the ERF would have to pay out.

The interesting question is why no one is talking about any of this. Obviously the 150 companies involved know about it, and it’s all described in full on the department website, but the fact that Australia has effectively legislated an emissions trading scheme is virtually a secret.

So far, climate change has been absent from the election campaign and will probably remain so — because fundamentally the parties agree now. The only disagreement is likely to be rate of the reduction in the caps, and no one is ready to talk about that yet.

In fact, the idea of a cap-and-trade scheme has been part of the Coalition’s climate policy since well before Greg Hunt went from shadow minister to Minister for the Environment in 2013. He made it a condition of his appointment by Tony Abbott that the science of climate change would be accepted and the emissions reduction target would not change.

Within that, he and Abbott constructed a policy position that could more or less credibly be argued as achieving the abatement targets, while at the same time satisfying three requirements: differentiating their policy from the ALP, not increasing electricity prices and not upsetting the far right of the Coalition.

When Malcolm Turnbull became leader and Prime Minister last year, amazingly, he did not fully understand his party’s climate policy, and in particular the inclusion of a cap and trade ETS, because Hunt had never discussed it in Cabinet. Apparently, he was pleasantly surprised, but decided to maintain radio silence, as part of his broader efforts to keep the conservatives onside.

The whole process has been a remarkable strategy by Hunt: he has effectively steered an emissions trading scheme into Australia’s response to climate change through a ferociously polarised political debate.

It’s arguably a bit like Nixon in China — only a conservative minister could have done it.

The key has been not talking about the ETS part of the policy and to emphasise the lack of a price on all emissions. He hasn’t exactly kept it secret, since it’s in the legislation, but nor has he talked about it publicly and nor has anyone else.

Both the Greens and the ALP passed the legislation in December, even though they probably could have blocked it. Why? It’s because they basically agree with it and want to use the mechanism if elected.

Will it work? That depends on the gradient of the cap reductions when they start. The key is that an ETS has now been legislated in Australia and can be adjusted to fit requirements, either budgetary or political.

Will it result in higher electricity prices? Almost certainly. Shhh.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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27 May, 2016

20th century global warming may have been due to decreasing aroma from trees

The finding below are particularly interesting in the aftermath of Munshi's demonstration that the buildup of CO2 in the atmosphere is NOT of anthropogenic origin.  So therefore anthropogenic CO2 emissions CANNOT explain the slight degree of global warming seen in C20.  So what does explain it?  The best explanation so far is Svensmark's theory that variations cosmic rays reaching earth  affect cloud formation and that earth was substantially shielded from such rays by enhanced solar activity in C20.

The finding below builds on that and looks at another factor that could affect cloud formation.  It finds that aromatic output from trees can encourage clouds.  So the extensive deforestation that occurred during C20 could have reduced clouds and caused some warming.  Now that deforestation has on a global scale run most of its course, therefore, we should have a C21 temperature stasis -- which is exactly what we do have.  We may have seen the complete end of a warming period

What I say above is just an attempt to put in layman's terms what Lubos Motl says below.  My apologies to Lubos if he thinks he had already done that

CLOUD, the experiment that measures the birth of clouds at CERN, has released new papers:

CLOUD has done lots of measurements of the processes that are needed to create clouds which, as many kids have noticed, usually cool down the weather.

The experiment has been taking place at CERN because the cosmic rays (emulated by the CERN's sources of beams) are important for the creation of the cloud (condensation) nuclei. Even in the new papers, cosmic rays are found to increase the nucleation rate by 1-2 orders of magnitude.

Recall that the Sun's activity may influence the cosmic ray flux, and therefore its variations may be responsible for "climate change". Svensmark's theory generally argues that a stronger solar activity means a more perfect shielding of the cosmic rays, therefore less cloudiness, and therefore warmer weather.

However, the focus of the new papers is on something else than the cosmic rays: the molecules that should be present for the cloud nuclei to emerge and surpass the critical mass.

It's been generally thought that the sulfuric acid was almost necessary. Chimneys (or volcano eruptions etc.) should increase cloudiness. However, there have been inconclusive hints in some papers that some organic molecules are enough. You may have worried: How could have the clouds existed in the past, before the chimneys were built?

Jasper Kirkby and collaborators have found out that the molecules known as "aroma of the trees" may indeed do the same job and that is decisive in the pristine environments without chimneys.

More precisely, the molecules that can do the job are the "highly oxygenated molecules" (HOMs) which are produced by ozonolysis of ?-pinene. The lesson for "global warming" seems clear: deforestation may decrease the amount of aroma from the trees, and therefore the amount of clouds, and it may therefore lead to global warming.

This may be the explanation of the changes in the 20th century and because the deforestation is over, so may be "global warming".


Season Approaches: U.S. Hits Record 127 Months Since Major Hurricane Strike

With hurricane season set to start next week, Tuesday marks a record 127 months since a major hurricane has made landfall in the continental United States, according to statistics compiled by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Hurricane Research Division, which keeps data on all the hurricanes that have struck the U.S. since 1851.

The last major hurricane (defined as a Category 3 or above) to hit the U.S. mainland was  Hurricane Wilma, which made landfall in Florida on Oct. 24, 2005.

Although a major hurricane typically strikes the U.S. about once every two years, no major hurricanes have made landfall in the U.S. for more than 10 and a half years.

The second longest stretch between major hurricane strikes was between the major hurricane that struck in August 1860 and the one that struck in September 1869, NOAA records show. The third longest stretch was between the major hurricane that struck in September 1900 and the one that struck in October 1906.

Wilma was one of four major hurricanes – including Hurricanes Dennis (July 10, 2005), Katrina (Aug. 29, 2005) and Rita (Sept. 24, 2005) - that came ashore in the U.S. during the 2005 hurricane season. (The season starts on June 1 and runs through November 30.)

Hurricanes Wilma, Rita and Katrina killed almost 4,000 people and caused an estimated $160 billion in damage that year, making it “one of the most active hurricane seasons in recorded history,” NOAA said in a statement marking the 10-year anniversary of the 2005 hurricane season.

Because of the massive death and destruction caused by Wilma, Rita, Katrina and Dennis, their names have been retired by the National Weather Service.

“On average, 12 tropical storms, 6 of which become hurricanes, form over the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, or Gulf of Mexico during the hurricane season,” according to NOAA.

“Over a typical 2-year period, the U.S. coastline is struck by an average of 3 hurricanes, 1 of which is classified as a major hurricane (winds of 111 mph or greater)” on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Such storms are capable of causing “devastating” or “catastrophic” damage.

The current drought in major hurricane activity is a “rare event” that occurs only once every 177 years, according to a study published last year by researchers at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) entitled The Frequency and Duration of U.S. Hurricane Droughts.

NOAA’s official “2016 hurricane season outlook will be issued on May 27th,” Dr. Gerry Bell, hurricane climate specialist at the agency’s Climate Prediction Center, told

However, there is a chance the 127-month record will be broken this year with the decline of the 2015-2016 El Nino, a warming of the ocean surface, that was one of the three strongest on record. There is a 75 percent chance of a transition to La Nina, a cooling of the ocean surface, by this fall, according to NOAA.

Dr. Philip Klotzbach, a meteorologist and hurricane specialist at the University of Colorado, tweeted that based on data going back to 1878, major hurricane activity is more likely to happen during the La Ninas that follow El Ninos.

According to The Weather Channel, last winter’s El Nino “played a significant suppressing role in the 2015 Atlantic hurricane season…. The odds may shift a bit toward a more active Atlantic hurricane season in 2016, but El Nino’s absence doesn’t guarantee that outcome.”

An analysis of five hurricane seasons following strong El Ninos found that the number of Category 3 or above hurricanes ranged from one (1973,1983) to five (1958).

In a statement on its website last year, NOAA expressed concern that the “unprecedented stretch” between major hurricanes could induce Americans living in coastal areas to suffer from “hurricane amnesia” and not be adequately prepared for the next hurricane strike.

“It only takes one storm to change your life and community,” warned a NOAA website for this month’s Hurricane Preparedness Week, which lists seven steps “to prepare for a potential landfalling tropical storm or hurricane” accompanied by storm surges and heavy rainfall.

“Storm surge is the abnormal rise of water generated by a storm’s winds. This hazard is historically the leading cause of hurricane related deaths in the United States,” according to NOAA. “Flooding from heavy rains is the second leading cause of fatalities during landfalling tropical cyclones.”

President Obama, so far, is the only president since Benjamin Harrison not to have a major hurricane make landfall in the U.S. during his term. Harrison, whose term of office did not include a major hurricane strike, served from 1889 to 1893.


'Climate Change Inquisition' Backtracks, but Fight Isn't Over

Some good news, some not-so-good news. The witch hunt launched by “AGs United for Clean Power” against organizations espousing views incredulous toward man-made global warming suffered somewhat of a setback this week after the group rescinded a DC-based subpoena targeting the Competitive Enterprise Institute. That’s the good news.

Unfortunately, the original subpoena has not been dropped, which leaves the possibility of an unconstitutional prosecution of CEI and other like-minded associates still very much in play.

According to the CEI, “Following the pledge in a May 13 letter to CEI’s attorney, U.S. Virgin Islands Attorney General Claude Walker (AG Walker) has withdrawn the District of Columbia subpoena action against the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), yet the original Virgin Islands subpoena remains, meaning AG Walker can move at any moment to continue his unconstitutional intimidation campaign against the free market group and others who oppose his view of climate change. CEI’s motion for sanctions against AG Walker is pending in court and the group continues its pushback against the AG’s wrongdoing.”

In April, Heritage Foundation fellows Hans von Spakovsky and Cole Wintheiser astutely branded the anti-free speech assault the “American Climate Change Inquisition” — a harrowing throwback to the Spanish Inquisition that “systematically silenced any citizen who held views that did not align with the king’s.” The rule of law will hopefully quash the modern day Climate Change Inquisition once and for all. But for now, groups like CEI and still being held hostage.


Obama Raided $500M for Zika to Finance UN’s Green Climate Fund

Last week, the Senate passed legislation to address and prevent the spread of the Zika virus. However, the Senate failed to pay for it, and instead approved a $1.1 billion “emergency” spending supplemental bill that is not subject to the budgetary caps that were agreed to last year.

While congressional inattention to the budget crisis is inexcusable, it is even more disturbing that the Obama administration already has the authority to pay for a Zika response from existing agency budgets, but chose not to.

I’ve said several times on the Senate floor, over the last two weeks, that the Zika virus is a serious threat and should be dealt with responsibly by funding immediate vaccine research and aggressive mosquito population control.

The threat to adults from Zika is relatively small, but the threat to pre-born children is very high. Our national priority rightly focuses on protecting the life of these young children in the womb, since each child has value, no matter their age or size.

But an international medical emergency has now become a U.S. budget emergency, a major debt crisis that will impact our children as well.

If there was a way to both respond to Zika and prevent new debt spending, wouldn’t it be reasonable to do that? The Department of Health and Human Services, Department of State, and International Assistance Programs currently have about $80 billion in unobligated funds.

A small fraction of this could be reprogrammed and redirected to respond to the Zika emergency and not add any additional debt to our nation’s children. This is exactly the type of authority the Obama administration asked for in 2009 during the height of the H1N1 virus scare.

This is not a partisan idea, it is a reasonable one in light of the medical emergency and the financial reality of our nation.

In a floor speech last week, I also shed light on the fact that Congress last December provided the Obama administration with authority to pull money from bilateral economic assistance to foreign countries.

You might ask—so what did the administration spend the infectious disease money on earlier this year? You guessed it… climate change.

They can use those funds to combat infectious diseases, if the administration believed there is an infectious disease emergency. In the middle of the Zika epidemic, the administration did use their authority to pull money from foreign aid and spend it, but they didn’t use it for Zika.

You might ask—so what did the administration spend the infectious disease money on earlier this year?

You guessed it… climate change.

In March, President Obama gave the United Nations $500 million out of an account under bilateral economic assistance to fund the U.N.’s Green Climate Fund.

Congress refused to allocate funding for the U.N. Climate Change Fund last year, so the president used this account designated for international infectious diseases to pay for his priority.

While I understand that intelligent people can disagree on the human effects on the global climate, it is hard to imagine a reason why the administration would prioritize the U.N. Green Climate Fund over protecting the American people, especially pregnant women, from the Zika virus.

Unfortunately, it gets worse.

So, the administration found a way to offend our ally Israel, delay the Zika response and, if Congress allows him, add another billion dollars to our national debt.

The U.N. Green Climate Fund is connected to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), an affiliated organization of the United Nations.

The UNFCCC recently accepted the “State of Palestine” as a signatory, which should trigger a U.S. funding prohibition. U.S. law forbids any taxpayer dollars to fund international organizations that recognize “Palestine” as a sovereign state.

So, the administration found a way to offend our ally Israel, delay the Zika response and, if Congress allows him, add another billion dollars to our national debt. That is a busy month.

The White House should not throw money at the U.N. while a vaccine for a virus known to cause severe, debilitating neurological birth defects is put on the back burner.

Zika is an important international crisis, but every crisis does not demand new “emergency funding” that is all debt. If there is a way to avoid more debt, we should take that option, it is what every family and every business does every day.


Canada:Putting the fox in charge of the henhouse

The climate activist group,, released a video on May 18 which starts:

“The Canadian government has announced it will work with provinces, territories, First Nations, and people across the country to develop a national climate strategy by the end of 2016 to determine how Canada will tackle climate change in the upcoming years.”

That sounds fine, as long as the “people across Canada” includes experts who actually understand the field, namely, scientists, economists, and engineers, regardless of whether they side with political correctness on the issue or not continues, “During May and June, the government has asked Members of Parliament to hold public consultations for this climate strategy with the constituents in their ridings.”

This is OK as well, as long as the consultations are done in such a way as to encourage a broad range of public input, not just what the government and climate activists find convenient. The recent climate consultation by the Government of Ontario was highly biased and a good example of what the federal government must avoid if their town hall consultations are to be seen as anything other than pep rallies.

“This process will offer a one in a generation opportunity for people to call for an ambitious national climate strategy,” continues

Well, yes, if people think Canada actually needs a national strategy. Since different regions may be affected by climate change in quite different ways, strategies specific to one region may make no sense in other regions. It is only if one accepts the need for national greenhouse gas emission reductions that a national strategy would seem to make sense, and, of course, such an idea is not shared by many Canadians. then says that they will be speaking out at the town halls in favour of the “People’s Climate Plan,” which aims to keep the majority of fossil fuel reserves in the ground and “builds a 21st century economy run 100% on renewable energy by 2050.”

Again, in a free society, is entitled to promote their viewpoints, regardless of whether it makes sense, or as many engineers and scientists maintain, is dangerously irrational. So, it is important that those of us who do not support the climate change plans of and their fellow climate activists attend and speak out at climate change public consultations.

In asking for public input on the government’s plans, Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna said, “The climate challenge cannot be resolved by government alone. That is why we need your help. We need your ideas and solutions. And we need everyone to be engaged in this national effort. Thank you for participating. I look forward to your ideas.”

This sounds encouraging. Indeed, even says in their video, “We’ll organize to demand that our MPs hold fair and inclusive consultations in our ridings.”

But then warns, “Next, we’ll fill up the room during government consultations with people from our local communities in support of the ‘People’s Climate Plan.’”

“And then, before the climate strategy is unveiled in the Fall, we’ll mobilize en-mass to hold the government accountable for taking bold, and ambitious, climate action.”

Many Canadians will find it intimidating to speak out in opposition to such organized and aggressive activism. Yet, the approach is still acceptable in a free society, provided the government controls the agenda and McKenna’s apparently welcoming approach is actually carried out in practice at public consultations.

But there’s the rub. Many of town halls appear unlikely to welcome anything aside from the point of view climate activists hold dear.

The list of climate change town halls across Canada shows that they fall into three categories.

I. Those organized and run by government alone

Provided meeting coordinators respect alternative perspectives and sanction activists who attempt to restrict free speech, these consultations can provide meaningful input to government climate plans.

The town hall to be held on July 5 in North Vancouver by MP John Wilkinson appears to fall into this category. As does the town hall being led by McKenna and MP for Winnipeg South Terry Duguid in Winnipeg tonight. In both cases, prospective attendees are directed to RSVP to government representatives.

II. Those organized and run by eco-activists alone

These should be allowed, of course, but the results of such town halls should not be considered representative of general public opinion since people who disagree with climate activists are unlikely to attend. Eco-activists can be highly abusive at times to anyone who does not agree with them.

The town hall meeting to be held this evening in Ottawa South falls into this category. To RSVP for the meeting, the public are directed to complete a online form, something few people will do if they do not agree with activists. MP David McGuinty stated in personal communications that his office is not organizing the event; he is simply a guest speaker. McGuinty said he does not foresee holding a public climate change town hall in his riding.

III. Those run by climate activists and government working together

These are inappropriate. MPs are elected to represent all of their constituents, and no group—not industry, not eco-activists and not even groups like ours, the International Climate Science Coalition—should have privileged access or control over public consultations.

The town hall being held tonight in Saskatoon is an example of this apparently unacceptable cooperation between government and eco-activists. On the Facebook page dedicated to the event, it could not be clearer: “The Saskatoon-West riding office in conjunction with Climate Justice Saskatoon has organized this event for the Saskatoon community at large.” Saskatoon West MP Sheri Benson should consider withdrawing from, or taking sole control of, the meeting.

Similarly, on the Facebook page for the “Climate Action Town Hall - Nelson,” (being held this evening in British Columbia), it is stated, “Conversation will be facilitated by community members representing the West Kootenay EcoSociety, Citizens Climate Lobby and the Nelson Interfaith Climate Action Collaborative.” Imagine how receptive these groups will be to public input that does not conform to their views. Again, Kootenay-Columbia MP Wayne Stetski should distance himself from the meeting, or take sole control of it and appoint neutral facilitators.

The goal of public consultations should be to help government determine real public opinion about issues of national importance. This cannot happen as long as parties with such clear agendas are organizers of the hearings. The fox must never be in charge of the henhouse.


Australia:  El Nino over, BoM says, so winter rain could be on the way

A miracle has occurred.  The BoM has not blamed anything below on global warming

The latest El Nino cycle is over, which could lead to a wet winter, according to the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM).

The bureau's modelling shows ocean surface temperatures across the tropical Pacific have cooled to neutral levels over the past fortnight.  Waters beneath the surface have also cooled.

Forecaster Michael Knepp said conditions were back to neutral and the bureau was now on La Nina watch. During La Nina events, rainfall in winter and spring is above average over northern, central and eastern Australia.

"[There's] a greater than 50 per cent chance that we might be in La Nina conditions later in the year," Mr Knepp said. "That's not a certain thing, just something to keep an eye on over the next few months."

International climate models indicate the tropical Pacific Ocean will continue to cool. Six of eight models suggest La Nina is likely to form during winter.

Mr Knepp said more rainfall could be expected across the region if predictions were correct, but the outlook accuracy at this time of year was low.

El Nino has contributed to drought conditions over the majority of Queensland. Currently, 85 per cent of Queensland is drought declared.

The bureau said almost the entire western half of Victoria was experiencing severe rainfall deficiency.  The rainfall deficiency in Tasmania covers much of the state.

Areas of serious to severe deficiency remain through inland Queensland and into northern New South Wales.

Large areas of South Australia and Western Australia are also experiencing serious rainfall deficiency.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


26 May, 2016

Trump executive proposes a wall to protect Irish golf resort from coastal erosion

This has got nothing to do with global warming.  Sea level rises in Ireland are in fact on the low side.  What IS true is that Western Ireland is exposed to the full force of big Atlantic storms -- and they do cause coastal erosion.  And it is common to put in place structures designed to halt such erosion.

To do so in politically correct Ireland does however require a permit and that permit is required under legislation enacted out of global warming fears.  It is not Trump who fears the effects of global  warming in Western Ireland.  It is the Dáil Éireann (Irish Parliament)

That Trump seeks a permit to build a wall does not mean that he agrees with being required to seek such a permit

Donald Trump wants to build another huge wall, this time to keep out the rising seas threatening to swamp his luxury golf resort in Ireland.

The Republican presidential candidate has called climate change a "con job" and a "hoax." But in an application filed this month in County Clare, Ireland, the Trump International Golf Links and Hotel cites the threat of global warming in seeking a permit to build a nearly two-mile-long stone wall between it and the Atlantic Ocean. The beach in front of the 18th green is disappearing at a rate of about a yard each year.

Trump's application, first reported Monday by Politico, cites local regulations pertaining to "rising sea levels and increased storm frequency and wave energy associated with global warming." An attached environmental impact statement says that almost all the dunes in western Ireland are retreating "due to sea level rise and increased Atlantic storminess."

Trump campaign spokesman Alan Garten did not respond Monday to messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.

Trump, who has roiled the immigration debate by proposing to build a massive wall along the Mexican border, has repeatedly taken to Twitter to express skepticism that human activity is causing the world to warm, raising sea levels as the polar ice caps melt. He has also said he would seek to "renegotiate" the global accord to cut climate-warming carbon emissions agreed to by President Barack Obama in December.

"The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive," Trump tweeted in 2012.

"The entire country is FREEZING - we desperately need a heavy dose of global warming, and fast! Ice caps size reaches all time high," Trump tweeted in 2014.

Environmental groups pounced on the application as evidence of hypocrisy.

"Donald Trump clearly cares more about the fate of his golf courses than the health of the millions of families already affected by the climate crisis," said Adam Beitman, a spokesman for the Sierra Club.


Study finds that warming INCREASES Greenland snowfall

They think their models can explain it but models can explain anything.  The truth is that nobody knows exactly how or why.  The 2 degrees of Global Warming predicted may not, on balance,  melt ANY Greenland ice -- so no sea level rise!  Tragic!

The history of Greenland’s snowfall is chronicled in an unlikely place: the remains of aquatic plants that died long ago, collecting at the bottom of lakes in horizontal layers that document the passing years.

Using this ancient record, scientists are attempting to reconstruct how Arctic precipitation fluctuated over the past several millennia, potentially influencing the size of the Greenland Ice Sheet as the Earth warmed and cooled.

An early study in this field finds that snowfall at one key location in western Greenland may have intensified from 6,000 to 4,000 years ago, a period when the planet’s Northern Hemisphere was warmer than it is today.

While more research needs to be done to draw conclusions about ancient precipitation patterns across Greenland, the new results are consistent with the hypothesis that global warming could drive increasing Arctic snowfall — a trend that would slow the shrinkage of the Greenland Ice Sheet and, ultimately, affect the pace at which sea levels rise.

“As the Arctic gets warmer, there is a vigorous scientific debate about how stable the Greenland Ice Sheet will be. How quickly will it lose mass?” says lead researcher Elizabeth Thomas, PhD, an assistant professor of geology in the University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences who completed much of the study as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.


Precipitation is predicted to increase in the Arctic as temperature increases and sea ice retreats. Yet the mechanisms controlling precipitation in the Arctic are poorly understood and quantified only by the short, sparse instrumental record. We use hydrogen isotope ratios (?2H) of lipid biomarkers in lake sediments from western Greenland to reconstruct precipitation seasonality and summer temperature during the past 8?kyr. Aquatic biomarker ?2H was 100‰ more negative from 6 to 4?ka than during the early and late Holocene, which we interpret to reflect increased winter snowfall. The middle Holocene also had high summer air temperature, decreased early winter sea ice in Baffin Bay and the Labrador Sea, and a strong, warm West Greenland Current. These results corroborate model predictions of winter snowfall increases caused by sea ice retreat and furthermore suggest that warm currents advecting more heat into the polar seas may enhance Arctic evaporation and snowfall.


Thomas, E. K., J. P. Briner, J. J. Ryan-Henry, and Y. Huang (2016); A major increase in winter snowfall during the middle Holocene on western Greenland caused by reduced sea ice in Baffin Bay and the Labrador Sea; Geophysical Research Letters, 43, doi:10.1002/2016GL068513.


More Greenie greed

A French logging company and official partner of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is deforesting a huge area of rainforest in southeast Cameroon without the consent of local Baka “Pygmies” who have lived there and managed the land for generations, Survival International has learned.

Rougier is described as an “integrated forest & trade company” and a large “forest operator” in a WWF press release and report. It is felling trees in an estimated 600,000 hectare area, which is more than is permitted under Cameroonian law.

Rougier has also been denounced by Friends of the Earth for its activities in Cameroon, which have included illegal price-fixing, illegal logging outside a concession, felling more trees than authorized, and illegally exporting rare timber.

WWF has stated that it would never partner with a company operating on indigenous land without the consent of the indigenous people. In entering this partnership with Rougier, it has violated its own policies on indigenous peoples.

Survival recently wrote to the CEO of Rougier asking whether he believed his company had acquired the Baka’s consent for the logging. In response Rougier simply said that: “Baka communities are aware of our existence and operation.”

Under Cameroonian law, the Baka are often criminalized as “poachers” when they hunt to feed their families. In a map produced by Rougier, all Baka forest camps within one concession are labelled as “poachers’ camps.”

In February, Survival filed an OECD complaint against WWF for funding abusive anti-poaching squads in Cameroon, who have used violence and intimidation to deny tribespeople access to their land.

According to a recent report produced by the EU, not a single logging company is operating legally in Cameroon. Experts say that no logging activities are being carried out at sustainable levels.

Evidence shows that tribal peoples are the best conservationists and guardians of the natural world. Despite this, WWF has preferred to partner with international corporations that destroy the environment’s best allies – tribal peoples.

Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said: “If further proof were needed that WWF is more interested in securing corporate cash than really looking out for the environment, here it is. The absurd language it has used to try and hide this partnership with a logging firm – calling Rougier a “leading producer of certified African tropical timber” – should fool no-one, and reveals a lot about the nature of this partnership. It’s a con. And it’s harming conservation. Survival is fighting these abuses, for tribes, for nature, for all humanity. Conservation organizations should be partnering with tribal peoples to protect the environment, not the companies destroying it to make a quick buck.”


EPA Conducts Two Secret Meetings A Year To Decide How To Dole Out BILLIONS In Slush Fund Money

Two internal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) committees secretly control how billions of dollars are spent, a Daily Caller News Foundation investigation has found.

Congress appropriates about $1 billion annually for EPA’s Superfund program, and the agency has accumulated nearly $6.8 billion in more than 1,300 slush fund-like accounts since 1990.

Two committees consisting entirely of EPA officials meet behind closed doors twice annually to decide how the agency spends those funds on highly polluted – and often dangerous – Superfund sites. All reports to and from the groups, as well as the minutes of their meetings and all other details, are kept behind closed doors.

“The National Risk-Based Priority Panel and the Superfund Special Accounts Senior Management Committee engage in pre-decisional deliberations which are internal to the agency and not open to the public,” an EPA spokeswoman who requested anonymity told TheDCNF.

She was referring to Exemption Five of the Freedom of Information Act, which is the most often abused exemption federal officials cite to justify withholding information about government activities and programs.

“The public is given ample time to weigh in on during the public comment period once the site is proposed for [National Priorities List (NPL)] addition,” the spokeswoman continued. “EPA considers those comments before making a final decision.” (RELATED: Colorado Town Finally Succumbs To EPA Control After Resisting For Decades)

These committees, however, are involved in financial decisions, rather than adding a site to the NPL – how the EPA finalizes a Superfund designation, so the comment period does nothing to advance public understanding of how the two committees spend billions of tax dollars every year.

“Established in January 2009, the Special Accounts Senior Management Committee … is responsible for EPA’s national oversight and management of special accounts,” the agency’s website says. The committee “ensures appropriate management, transparency, and accountability … with special accounts.”

Meanwhile, the agency has collected $6.3 billion in approximately 1,308 special accounts from lawsuits and settlements with parties responsible for polluting superfund sites, but details beyond regional balances are withheld from the public, TheDCNF previously reported.

It’s nearly impossible to determine where the estimated $3.3 billion spent so far went, or who will get the remaining $3.5 billion (after adding interest). The EPA will also continue collecting funds from new superfund sites, such as the recently proposed Gold King Mine, where the agency spilled 880,000 pounds of dangerous metals into drinking water.

Additionally, the EPA’s Inspector General has criticized numerous aspects of the special accounts, including the agency’s overall bookkeeping. The watchdog previously recommended transferring $65 million out of special accounts, for example.

The second group – the Superfund National Risk-Based Priority Panel – determines which unfunded sites require immediate attention based on several factors, such as the risk to the nearby community.

But the panel’s secrecy prevents residents from knowing where nearby hazardous places stand as an agency priority. This is particularly important, since 329 Superfund sites could expose dangerous contaminants to humans, according to EPA.

This confidentiality is necessary “to prevent polluters from taking advantage of the EPA’s funding decisions,” the EPA told the Center for Public Integrity in 2007. “Agency insiders,” however, told the center the real reason was to avoid congressional scrutiny.

That revelation is crucial, considering EPA withholds details about the special accounts, as well as sites endangering humans, from Congress. Not having such information effectively prevents Congress from exercising its constitutionally mandated oversight of executive branch agencies like EPA.

The EPA, for example, refused to divulge information about the sites exposing humans to dangerous contaminants to Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works democrats – including then-Sen. Barack Obama and Ranking Member Barbara Boxer ?of California, CPI reported. Some of the documents were eventually obtained, but were marked “privileged,” and could only be reviewed under EPA supervision.

Boxer’s spokeswoman did not respond to repeated DCNF requests for comment.


EPA’s move to raise ethanol mix in gasoline fuels alarm over engine damage

The Environmental Protection Agency’s move to add more ethanol to gasoline will wreak havoc on lawn mowers, snow blowers, boats and even cars, say critics.

Mixing an additional 700 million gallons of ethanol and other biofuels into the nation’s fuel supply to meet a goal of 18.8 billion gallons in 2017 will raise the biofuel percentage to 10.44 percent, or past the “blend wall” after which car engines can be damaged, said Heartland Institute research fellow Isaac Orr.

“It’s hard for anyone to argue that the renewable fuel standard has been a good policy, and the Environmental Protection Agency’s decision to increase the amount of ethanol in the nation’s fuel supply means this train wreck of a policy will continue for at least another year,” Mr. Orr said in a Thursday statement.

“Owners of small engines like lawn mowers, snow blowers, and boats are hurt by ethanol mandates because ethanol is hard on these engines,” he said.

Janet McCabe, acting assistant administrator for the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, called the 2005 Renewable Fuel Standard “a success story that has driven biofuel production and use in the U.S. to levels higher than any other nation.”

“This administration is committed to keeping the RFS program on track, spurring continued growth in biofuel production and use, and achieving the climate and energy independence benefits that Congress envisioned from this program,” she said in a Wednesday statement.

Ethanol is popular with lawmakers in farming states like Iowa, but the mandate faces increasing opposition from others, including some environmentalists, who object to clearing more land for farming in order to grow the corn-based fuel.

Free-market champions say the standard no longer makes sense because oil and natural gas have become so plentiful thanks to advances in extraction technology, starting with hydraulic fracturing. The ethanol mandate also raises the cost of fuel.

At the time, Congress was attempting to reduce emissions as well as U.S. dependence on foreign oil. Since then, the United States has become the world’s largest producer of natural gas and doubled its oil production, sending prices plummeting.

The EPA’s proposed increase is lower than the statutory volume imposed by Congress in 2007, but the amount is still too high


Don’t blame global warming for sizzling temperature, it’s your fault

A message from India to Indians

Sizzling at 51 degrees celsius, Phalodi, a small town in Rajasthan, has set the country’s new all-time record for hottest temperature. In any case April turns out to be the hottest month ever, 7th month in a row when temperatures have exceeded what had been the highest recorded so far. This is not a record to be proud of but is an indication of how economic growth has created an atmosphere where chopping a tree does not evoke any concern.

The rise in temperatures is indirectly proportionate to the decimation of green cover. The more the chopping of trees, the higher is the temperature.

I have never felt what it is like to be in 51 degrees but have lived in northwest areas which have often exceeded temperature hikes of 47 degrees. Even in such temperature extremes, the moment I pass through a cluster of trees a wave of relatively cold breeze is such a great feeling.  The temperature difference is striking. At least, a difference of 2 to 3 degrees between a dense tree shade and what you feel when you are on a highway. Even in a concrete jungle like New Delhi, where the scorching temperature exceeding 47 degrees is biting enough, imagine the soothing effect if an increased green cover had brought the average temperature down by 3 to 4 degrees.

Don’t blame it on global warming; blame yourself for the rising heat. You kept quiet when trees were being chopped mercilessly.

In a desperate race to achieve a higher growth rate, chopping a tree does not anymore evoke any reaction. It is considered an inevitable price that has to be paid for development. Ruthless chopping of trees in metros and elsewhere to pave way for infrastructure projects, expansion of highways from two-lane to four lane, and from four-lane to six-lane, and the disappearing of water bodies and cutting down of trees for residential complexes has led to what is called as urban ‘heat island’ effect. Cities and towns are increasingly becoming ‘heat islands’. The higher the concentration of concrete buildings/structures, the more is the ability to absorb solar radiation.

The National Green Tribunal has recently served a notice to Punjab government for the axing of 96,000 trees to widen a 200-km long road stretch between Zirakpur and Bathinda. But to my dismay I haven’t seen any form of public protests or citizens’ reaction to such a large scale chopping of trees. We have quietly accepted that trees have to be axed for the sake of development. As I have often said that if a tree is standing, the GDP does not go up but if you chop down a tree, the GDP goes up. Now it is our choice whether you want a higher GDP by cutting down trees or you want a kind of development where trees become part of sustainable living.

The Neem Foundation tells us that temperature below a fully grown neem tree is often 10 degrees less. I read an interesting article in The New Indian Express (April 24, 2016) where the author tells us the difference in temperature between green patches and the city centre in several cities. In Bangalore for instance the difference in temperature prevailing at the GKVK Agricultural University and just outside the campus is four degrees. Even when the temperature in the Majestic bus stand was 35 to 36 degrees, it was around 32 degrees in a nearby park.

According to a study by Prof T V Ramchandra and his team of the Energy & Wetlands Research Group Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore city has seen a rapid expansion in urban growth. In 2012, the researchers estimated that the built-up area had grown by a whopping 584 per cent over the preceding four decades. This obviously came at a heavy price. Vegetation cover declined by 66 per cent and 74 per cent of the water bodies disappeared. Bangalore no longer carries the same charm as it used to earlier. I have heard many residents complain of the haphazard growth. But then who cares. After all, it is urbanization that the mainline economists and planners are always pushing for. People are being made to believe that concrete jungles are the future, if they have to develop.

IndiaSpend, a data-driven and public-interest journalism group, has analysed the IISc study in a form that can be easily understood. Accordingly, four major cities in the country have seen a rapid decimation of its green cover. Bhopal tree cover fell from 66 per cent to 22 per cent in the past 22 years. Now this is something too serious to worry about. Instead, by 2018, which means another three years, the green cover in Bhopal will come down to 11 per cent. You can surely call it a sign of growth but don’t complain when the temperatures soar to record breaking levels.

Ahmedabad has only 24 per cent of its green cover left, coming down from 46 per cent in the past two decades. But hold your breath. If you are living in Ahmedabad or plan to translocate to this city, think again. By 2030, Ahmedabad will be left with only 3 per cent of its green cover. Kolkata too will be left with a green cover of 3.7 per cent by the year 2030, and Hyderabad will have only 1.84 per cent of its tree cover left by the year 2024, which is not far away. The rate of speedy urbanization is clearly leading to a massive erosion of what is called as green lungs of a city. The rise in temperature is therefore a natural outcome.

The combined effect of urbanization is what is leading to soaring temperatures. Considering that urbanization is the easiest way to enhance GDP growth, I see no reason why people should be complaining. You asked for it.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


25 May, 2016

Are SQUID the big winners from climate change?

This is data-less speculation.  I have read the original article (Global proliferation of cephalopods) and confirm that the researchers had NO data on global warming or ocean temperature in their study.  What they examined was what fishermen have been catching and they found that catches have shown increasing percentages of cephalopoda as time has gone by.  That is all they found.  And ANY explanation of that is speculative. 

The obvious explanation would seem to be that bony fish are a more attractive catch so fishermen go where bony fish are most found and deplete stocks of them.  But bony fish are predators of cephalopoda so cephalopoda thrive under reduced predation.

With the Green/Left it is always important to look at what they do NOT say -- and there is a prize example of that here.  If they really believed that cephalopoda stocks were increased by global warming, it would have been perfectly easy to examine that.  But they did not. 

What they could have done is analyse their data separately for the grand temperature hiatus (1945 to 1975) and the recent hiatus (1999 to 2014) and assess whether catches remained static during those periods.  If so, that would prove their theory.  It would have been perfectly easy to divide up their data in that way so why did they present results for their study period (1953 to 2013) as a whole only?  Can I guess?  Because cephalopod numbers did NOT level off in those periods. 

So I think we have here indirect evidence that climate change did NOT influence cephalopod numbers. The claim that it did is just more Warmist deceit

Although many fish species are in serious decline due to rising ocean temperatures and over fishing, it seems squid and octopuses are flourishing.

The cephalopods have increased in numbers over the past 60 years, according to new research.

Squid, octopuses and cuttlefish are known to be highly adaptable and grow rapidly, which may be giving them an advantage as ocean environments change.

An international team of biologists, led by researchers at the University of Adelaide, compiled a database of global catch rates of cephalopod to investigate long-term trends in abundance.

They published their findings in the Cell Press journal, Current Biology.

Dr. Zoë Doubleday, lead author of the study at the University of Adelaide, said: 'Our analyses showed that cephalopod abundance has increased since the 1950s, a result that was remarkably consistent across three distinct groups.'


Fury as big British bird charity backs more wind turbines: Warnings of a bird 'massacre' after charity says thousands more could be built with little risk to the countryside

The RSPB has caused a flap by suggesting that thousands more wind turbines could be built – with minimal risk to birds and the countryside.

The charity, which has previously been accused of being more interested in political lobbying than protecting birds, says climate change is one of the greatest long-term threats to wildlife.

And it warns that Britain must find ways of switching to green energy that are ‘in harmony with wildlife’.

However, the suggestion that building at least 25,000 onshore wind turbines – up from the current 5,000 – could help solve the problem has infuriated rural campaigners.

You Forgot the Birds, a group of landowners that includes former England cricketer Ian Botham, said the structures would blight the landscape and cause a bird ‘massacre’.

Ian Gregory, the group’s campaign director, accused the charity of ‘retreating into an ideological bunker’.

He said: ‘How are birds supposed to weave their way through thousands of wind turbines spinning at up to 180mph? It is difficult to think of a less bird-friendly way of dealing with climate change.’ Mr Gregory acknowledged that the RSPB report notes that turbines can pose a collision risk for birds but questioned whether its main concern was damage to the blades.

The row is the latest in a series of clashes between the RSPB and landowners, who accuse the charity of heavy-handed policing of the countryside.

The report details how on and off-shore windfarms, solar power, wave power and other forms of renewable energy could be harnessed to meet Britain’s electricity needs by 2050.

Martin Harper, the RSPB’s director of conservation, said: ‘Climate change is one of the greatest long-term threats to wildlife. And, with rising sea levels, increased flooding and changes to our weather it is also affecting people and our economy. So, doing nothing is not an option.’

An RSPB spokesman said: ‘We support the principles of renewable energy using a common sense approach. In many cases a turbine can be located without a detrimental impact on wildlife. Over the years we have been involved in over 1,000 planning applications for wind turbines, and only maintained objections to around 5 per cent.’


Green light for fracking across rural England after council gives the go ahead for test drilling at North Yorkshire site

Fracking in one of the most beautiful parts of the British countryside received the go-ahead last night, opening the door for a dash for shale gas.

Green campaigners condemned the decision by North Yorkshire County Council, warning it could be a landmark ruling paving the way for drilling in rural areas across England.

The fracking operation at Kirby Misperton, near Malton, will be the first in Britain for five years. Full-scale production can begin if tests show gas could be extracted on a commercial scale.

Energy companies with licences to explore for hidden reserves are now likely to apply for consent for test drilling at dozens of rural sites across England.

Fracking, a highly controversial method of mining, involves injecting water, sand and chemicals at high pressure into rocks deep underground to open up fractures in the rock to release trapped gas and oil.

Critics say the process causes noise and contamination – and small earthquakes were triggered near Blackpool in 2011 by a firm exploring for shale gas, leading to a temporary moratorium.

Adela Pickles, from the campaign group Frack Free Ryedale, said: ‘This is the starting gun for fracking in the UK.  ‘It has established a planning precedent in North Yorkshire which means that it is going to be a lot harder for planning committees to turn down future applications.’

Third Energy, the company behind the North Yorkshire scheme, has produced gas at the site for more than 20 years.

It has been granted consent to carry out test fracking and production from an existing well drilled three years ago. The process will target rocks nearly two miles below ground.

The test fracking is expected to take around six weeks and consent has been granted for nine years of production.

Gas from the well would be pumped to a nearby power station, generating electricity for local homes and businesses.

The planning authority received more than 4,000 objections, mainly on environmental grounds.

The well is less than four miles from the North York Moors National Park, where a £2.4billion potash mine was controversially given planning consent last year.

Locals fear the schemes will deal a devastating blow to the local tourist industry.

Third Energy said work at Kirby Misperton will not begin for many months, but there are fears of mass protests of the kind witnessed three years ago in the Sussex village of Balcombe, where test drilling for oil took place.

Third Energy chief executive Rasik Valand insisted fracking was safe while Ken Cronin, of the UK Onshore Oil and Gas, said the vote was ‘an important first step’.

He said the industry did not yet know ‘what we can get’ from fracking in the UK and whether ‘gas will come out of the ground’ in sufficient quantities to be profitable.

Local Tory MP Kevin Hollinrake said he broadly welcomed the decision but warned it had to be ‘regulated properly’ and done in a way that ‘protects the beauty of the countryside’.

He told the Mail: ‘This is a national policy, it was passed by a majority of 250 votes in 2015. It’s no good saying you’ll back it as long as it’s not in your area.’

Fracking licences were granted in 27 areas last August and in December MPs voted to allow it to take place below national parks and other protected sites.

David Cameron has said he wanted to go ‘all out’ for fracking, as a UK shale gas industry would provide greater energy security and keep prices down.

Energy minister Andrea Leadsom said last night: ‘We’re very clear that fracking is a fantastic opportunity.

It’s good for jobs, the economy and strengthens our energy security. We already have tough regulation in place to ensure that fracking is safe.’


The Real Energy Deniers

By Viv Forbes

When man first appeared on Earth he had no implements, no clothes, no farms and no mineral fuels – his only tools were his brains, hands and muscles.

Everything that enables mankind to live comfortably in a world where nature is indifferent to our survival has been discovered, invented, mined or created by our inventive ancestors over thousands of years.

The history of civilisation is essentially the story of man’s progressive access to more efficient, more abundant and more reliable energy sources - from ancestral human muscles to modern nuclear power.

There are seven big steps on the human energy ladder – fire, farming, solar power, gunpowder, coal, the steam engine and nuclear power.

Man’s first and greatest energy step was discovering how to harness fire for warmth, cooking, hunting, metal working and warfare.

For centuries the main fire-energy fuels were organic natural resources such as wood, charcoal, peat, grass, animal dung and fats/oils extracted from animals and plants. As human population increased, these energy sources became scarce as the land and seas around towns and villages were stripped of their natural carbon fuels.

The second step on the energy ladder was built when some smart hunter/gatherers discovered how to access more reliable energy from domesticated animals and plants. Sheep, cattle, goats and pigs provided a steady supply of carbon-based food energy, and dogs, horses, donkeys and camels multiplied human energy for transport, hunting and warfare. Farmers also nurtured fruiting trees and grasses such as einkorn, wheat, rice, barley, oats, corn and sugar cane. These provided more dependable and abundant food energy for humans and their animals.

About this time humans ascended the third step on their energy ladder – the ability to harness wind/hydro/solar power for sailing ships, windmills, water-wheels, grain mills and drying food. The low energy density and unpredictability of these weather-dependent energy sources was obvious, even to our ancestors.

The fourth big step was the invention of gunpowder by the Chinese, which gave humans the first glimpse of the enormous power of concentrated chemical energy. This led to the widespread use of explosives for hunting, armaments, mining, civil engineering and entertainment.

The fifth energy step was a bigger one - the discovery of how to obtain and use coal, and centuries later, oil and gas. The energy density and abundance of these hydro-carbon fuels gave an enormous boost to human access to energy, and massively relieved the pressure on forest fuels and animal fats.

The sixth step on the energy ladder was truly gigantic - British inventors and engineers built the first practical steam engine. That invention transformed the world. Suddenly steam engines were moving trains and ships, pumping water, generating electricity and powering factories, traction engines and road vehicles. Most steam engines were driven by coal, but wood, other hydro-carbons, concentrated solar energy or nuclear power could be used.

Steam cars and electric cars got a good work-out over 100 years ago, but neither could compete with a new invention - the oil-powered internal combustion engine. This small but powerful engine resulted in the replacement of steam and electric motors for mobile engines but the mighty steam engine still dominates electricity generation.

These two engines, running on powerful hydrocarbon fuels, feed and mobilise our world. The transformation is remarkable. Just 3-4 generations ago, a team of up to twenty bullocks took days or weeks to haul a wagon-load of wool bales, forest logs or bagged wheat to markets, and the bullocks needed fresh supplies of feed and water every night. In 1896, Henry Lawson described it well in two stanzas from his great Australian poem “The Teams”:

A cloud of dust on the long white road,
And the teams go creeping on
Inch by inch with the weary load;
And by the power of the green-hide goad
The distant goal is won.

But the rains are heavy on roads like these;
And, fronting his lonely home,
For weeks together the settler sees
The teams bogged down to the axle-trees,
Or ploughing the sodden loam.

Cattle and sheep to feed the cities were moved by drovers who spent weeks or even months on the road. Today one diesel-powered road train or semi-trailer can carry its own fuel and water plus a load of livestock to the distant cities in a day or so. Refrigerated trucks do even better – swiftly carrying dressed sides of meat from the abattoir direct to butcher shops.

The seventh step in the human quest for additional energy was the harnessing of atomic energy for generating electricity, fuelling naval vessels, in medical procedures and creating even more powerful explosive devices.

As mankind was ascending the seven steps of the energy ladder from the stone-age to the nuclear age, governments were also expanding their scope, power and cost.

Mankind has always had tribal leaders, but when farming developed, leaders or powerful land-owners discovered that other farmers and their fixed assets could easily be taxed to pay for their own “protection”. This encouraged the development of central governments with their officials, tax collectors, police and soldiers. To defend their generally increasing appetite for tax revenue, governments needed a continual supply of real or imagined dangers to justify their taxes. From this point on, government power has increased with each real or invented community crisis – from village control, to district, state, federal and continental governments. The latest such “crisis” concerns “global warming” or “the climate crisis”, which is being milked to promote global carbon taxes and global government.

Nothing stands still on planet Earth. Since the dawn of time, Earth has seen continual geological and climatic change – shifting continents, rising and falling sea levels, volcanos and tsunamis, droughts and floods, migrations and extinctions, hurricanes and heat waves, ice ages and warm eras.

Humans flourished in the warm eras and suffered in the cold dry eras. Access to abundant, reliable energy enables man to survive these and the future climate challenges which are sure to come.

Today’s massive global human population owes its existence, prosperity and comfort to our economical and reliable energy supplies, particularly the hydrocarbon fuels – oil, coal, and gas. The world supports more people with fewer famines; and those with access to abundant reliable energy supplies have stabilised their populations and contribute most to caring for nature, culture and the poor. And the carbon dioxide recycled by the usage of hydrocarbon fuels is greening the world and adding to food supplies as native and farmed plants flourish in the warm, moist, carbon-rich atmosphere.

This long history of energy progress is now under threat from strong forces using any environmental alarm to deny human access to efficient energy. Using every sensational scare that can be whipped up, they tax, oppose, hamper or restrict farming, forestry, fishing, grazing, mining, exploration, hydro-carbon fuels, steam engines, combustion engines and nuclear power. The “zero-emissions” zealots want us to step backwards down the energy ladder to the days of human, animal and solar power. They have yet to explain how our massive fleet of planes, trains, tractors, harvesters, trucks, road trains, container-ships and submarines will run on windmills, treadmills, windlasses, solar energy, and water wheels.

But their energy-destroying policies will reduce global prosperity and population back towards levels prevailing in those times. Some see that as a desirable goal.

These green zealots are the real deniers – the energy deniers.


US Activates First New Nuclear Reactor In 20 Years

America’s first new nuclear reactor in 20 years went online early Monday morning after 44 years of construction.

The reactor is now operating at low power levels and will soon begin producing and selling 1,150 megawatts of electricity to the Tennessee Valley, powering roughly 1.3 million homes when combined with the plant’s other reactor.

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) started construction on Watts Bar Unit 2 reactor 44 years ago. Work ended in 1985 after more than $1 billion was already spent, due to a construction scandal involving contractors paying off corrupt agency officials. The project was 80 percent complete before the scandal stopped construction. The TVA revived the project in 2007, at a time when nuclear power seemed poised to make a comeback.

Building the new reactor was initially projected to cost $2.2 billion, but costs increased to $4.7 billion due to overruns and new compliance standards implemented in the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster.

“This milestone is the result of the hard work by Watts Bar employees supported by the entire TVA nuclear team,” Joe Grimes, the plant’s chief nuclear officer, told a local news channel. “While this achievement is important, safety remains our top priority.”

America currently operates 99 nuclear reactors across 61 commercially operated nuclear power plants, according to the Energy Information Administration. The average nuclear plant employs between 400 and 700 highly-skilled workers, has a payroll of about $40 million and contributes $470 million to the local economy, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute. The Watts Bar plant will support an estimated 1,000 full-time jobs.

Of the 59 new nuclear reactors under construction worldwide, only four of them are being built in the U.S., just enough to compensate for shutting down older reactors. The average American nuclear reactor is 35-years-old, nearly obsolete by modern design standards and near the end of its operating license. Within the past two years, six states have shut down nuclear plants and many other reactors are risking premature retirement.

Instead of building more modern reactors, the government is planning to simply extend the operating licenses against the advice of its own technical staff. The country’s youngest nuclear plant, Tennessee’s Watts Bar 1, entered service in 1996. America’s oldest operating reactors — Oyster Creek in New Jersey and Nine Mile Point in upstate New York — entered service in 1969.

Nuclear energy provides 19 percent of the nation’s electricity, but struggles to compete against heavily subsidized solar and wind power or cheap natural gas.


Australia: How to become an honoured meteorologist

Tell lies.  He says below:  "I don’t know a meteorologist who doesn’t understand and accept that putting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere will lead to warming of the surface of the earth. It’s meteorology 101. This is not 40 per cent or 70 per cent. It’s 100 per cent"

Yet we read elsewhere:  "Barely half of American Meteorological Society meteorologists believe global warming is occurring and humans are the primary cause, a newly released study reveals"

And has he heard of this guy?

Prof. Nicholls knows on which side his bread is buttered

Monash meteorologist honoured by prestigious fellowship. Emeritus Professor Neville Nicholls’s lifelong passion and commitment to science has been formally recognised with a prestigious Australian Academy of Science (AAS) fellowship.

Professor Nicholls, School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment in the Faculty of Science, set his sights on science at the age of eight, when his aunt gave him a book on wildlife of the British Isles.

Professor Nicholls took his interest in science further by training as a meteorologist with the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, after which he returned to research to further investigate how and why the climate is changing.

“Weather and climate variations affect almost everything we do, particularly the extremes like heatwaves, tropical cyclones, droughts and bushfires, which destroy lives and property. The better we can predict those phenomena, the more we can help improve the quality of life,” Professor Nicholls said.

Climate change is a particular area of interest to Professor Nicholls, who is surprised at the perception of a scientific divide on the issue.

“I don’t know a meteorologist who doesn’t understand and accept that putting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere will lead to warming of the surface of the earth. It’s meteorology 101. This is not 40 per cent or 70 per cent. It’s 100 per cent. There is a perception that there is a big battle between scientists. There isn’t.”

Professor Nicholls has described himself as “doubly honoured” by the peer-nominated fellowship, both as an individual researcher and as a member of the meteorology community.

“I feel privileged to be only the third meteorologist ever to be elected to the Academy. From the operations to the research, meteorology is important because of the impact it has on people’s lives, so I am doubly honoured,” Professor Nicholls said.

Press release from Monash Media & Communications


For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


24 May, 2016

Top Scientist Resigns: 'Global Warming is a $Trillions Scam — It has Corrupted Many Scientists'

The following is a letter to the American Physical Society released to the public by Professor Emiritus of physics Harold 'Hal' Lewis of the University of California at Santa Barbara.

From: Hal Lewis, University of California, Santa Barbara
To: Curtis G. Callan, Jr., Princeton University, President of the American Physical Society

Dear Curt:

When I first joined the American Physical Society sixty-seven years ago it was much smaller, much gentler, and as yet uncorrupted by the money flood (a threat against which Dwight Eisenhower warned a half-century ago).

Indeed, the choice of physics as a profession was then a guarantor of a life of poverty and abstinence — it was World War II that changed all that. The prospect of worldly gain drove few physicists.

As recently as thirty-five years ago, when I chaired the first APS study of a contentious social/scientific issue, The Reactor Safety Study, though there were zealots aplenty on the outside there was no hint of inordinate pressure on us as physicists. We were therefore able to produce what I believe was and is an honest appraisal of the situation at that time.

We were further enabled by the presence of an oversight committee consisting of Pief Panofsky, Vicki Weisskopf, and Hans Bethe, all towering physicists beyond reproach. I was proud of what we did in a charged atmosphere.

In the end the oversight committee, in its report to the APS President, noted the complete independence in which we did the job, and predicted that the report would be attacked from both sides. What greater tribute could there be?

How different it is now. The giants no longer walk the earth, and the money flood has become the raison d’être of much physics research, the vital sustenance of much more, and it provides the support for untold numbers of professional jobs.

For reasons that will soon become clear my former pride at being an APS Fellow all these years has been turned into shame, and I am forced, with no pleasure at all, to offer you my resignation from the Society.

It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist.

Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford’s book organizes the facts very well.)

I don’t believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion. I would almost make that revulsion a definition of the word scientist.

So what has the APS, as an organization, done in the face of this challenge? It has accepted the corruption as the norm, and gone along with it.

For example:

1. About a year ago a few of us sent an e-mail on the subject to a fraction of the membership. APS ignored the issues, but the then President immediately launched a hostile investigation of where we got the e-mail addresses.

In its better days, APS used to encourage discussion of important issues, and indeed the Constitution cites that as its principal purpose. No more. Everything that has been done in the last year has been designed to silence debate

2. The appallingly tendentious APS statement on Climate Change was apparently written in a hurry by a few people over lunch, and is certainly not representative of the talents of APS members as I have long known them. So a few of us petitioned the Council to reconsider it.

One of the outstanding marks of (in)distinction in the Statement was the poison word incontrovertible, which describes few items in physics, certainly not this one. In response APS appointed a secret committee that never met, never troubled to speak to any skeptics, yet endorsed the Statement in its entirety.

(They did admit that the tone was a bit strong, but amazingly kept the poison word incontrovertible to describe the evidence, a position supported by no one.)

In the end, the Council kept the original statement, word for word, but approved a far longer “explanatory” screed, admitting that there were uncertainties, but brushing them aside to give blanket approval to the original.

The original Statement, which still stands as the APS position, also contains what I consider pompous and asinine advice to all world governments, as if the APS were master of the universe. It is not, and I am embarrassed that our leaders seem to think it is.

This is not fun and games, these are serious matters involving vast fractions of our national substance, and the reputation of the Society as a scientific society is at stake.

3. In the interim the ClimateGate scandal broke into the news, and the machinations of the principal alarmists were revealed to the world. It was a fraud on a scale I have never seen, and I lack the words to describe its enormity. Effect on the APS position: none. None at all. This is not science; other forces are at work.

4. So a few of us tried to bring science into the act (that is, after all, the alleged and historic purpose of APS), and collected the necessary 200+ signatures to bring to the Council a proposal for a Topical Group on Climate Science, thinking that open discussion of the scientific issues, in the best tradition of physics, would be beneficial to all, and also a contribution to the nation.

I might note that it was not easy to collect the signatures, since you denied us the use of the APS membership list. We conformed in every way with the requirements of the APS Constitution, and described in great detail what we had in mind—simply to bring the subject into the open.

5. To our amazement, Constitution be damned, you declined to accept our petition, but instead used your own control of the mailing list to run a poll on the members’ interest in a TG on Climate and the Environment.

You did ask the members if they would sign a petition to form a TG on your yet-to-be-defined subject, but provided no petition, and got lots of affirmative responses. (If you had asked about sex you would have gotten more expressions of interest.)

There was of course no such petition or proposal, and you have now dropped the Environment part, so the whole matter is moot. (Any lawyer will tell you that you cannot collect signatures on a vague petition, and then fill in whatever you like.)

The entire purpose of this exercise was to avoid your constitutional responsibility to take our petition to the Council.

6. As of now you have formed still another secret and stacked committee to organize your own TG, simply ignoring our lawful petition.

APS management has gamed the problem from the beginning, to suppress serious conversation about the merits of the climate change claims. Do you wonder that I have lost confidence in the organization?

I do feel the need to add one note, and this is conjecture, since it is always risky to discuss other people’s motives. This scheming at APS HQ is so bizarre that there cannot be a simple explanation for it.

Some have held that the physicists of today are not as smart as they used to be, but I don’t think that is an issue. I think it is the money, exactly what Eisenhower warned about a half-century ago. There are indeed trillions of dollars involved, to say nothing of the fame and glory (and frequent trips to exotic islands) that go with being a member of the club.

Your own Physics Department (of which you are chairman) would lose millions a year if the global warming bubble burst. When Penn State absolved Mike Mann of wrongdoing, and the University of East Anglia did the same for Phil Jones, they cannot have been unaware of the financial penalty for doing otherwise.

As the old saying goes, you don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing. Since I am no philosopher, I’m not going to explore at just which point enlightened self-interest crosses the line into corruption, but a careful reading of the ClimateGate releases makes it clear that this is not an academic question.

I want no part of it, so please accept my resignation. APS no longer represents me, but I hope we are still friends.


Harold Lewis is Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara, former Chairman; Former member Defense Science Board, chmn of Technology panel; Chairman DSB study on Nuclear Winter; Former member Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards; Former member, President’s Nuclear Safety Oversight Committee; Chairman APS study on Nuclear Reactor Safety Chairman Risk Assessment Review Group; Co-founder and former Chairman of JASON; Former member USAF Scientific Advisory Board; Served in US Navy in WW II; books: Technological Risk (about, surprise, technological risk) and Why Flip a Coin (about decision making).


When denying science is a progressive moral imperative   

The Left has long claimed that it has something of a monopoly on scientific expertise. For instance, long before Al Gore started making millions by claiming that anyone who disagreed with his apocalyptic prophecies was “anti-science,” there were the “scientific socialists.” “Social engineer” is now rightly seen as a term of scorn and derision, but it was once a label that progressive eggheads eagerly accepted.

Masking opinions in a white smock is a brilliant, albeit infuriating and shabby, rhetorical tactic. As the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously said, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.” Science is the language of facts, and when people pretend to be speaking it, they’re not only claiming that their preferences are more than mere opinions, they’re also insinuating that anyone who disagrees is a fool or a zealot for objecting to “settled science.”

Put aside the fact that there is no such thing as settled science. Scientists are constantly questioning their understanding of things; that is what science does. All the great scientists of history are justly famous for overturning the assumptions of their fields. The real problem is that in politics, invocations of science are very often marketing techniques masquerading as appeals to irrefutable authority. In an increasingly secular society, having science on your side is better than having God on your side – at least in an argument.

I’m not saying that you can’t have science in your corner, or that lawmakers shouldn’t look to science when making policy. (Legislation that rejects the existence of gravity makes for very silly laws indeed.) But the real intent behind so many claims to “settled science” is to avoid having to make your case. It’s an undemocratic technique for delegitimizing opposing views and saying “shut up” to dissenters.

For example, even if the existence of global warming is “settled,” the policies for how to best respond to it are not. But in the political debates about climate change, activists say that their climatological claims are irrefutable and so are their preferred remedies.

If climate change is the threat they claim, I’d rather spend billions on geoengineering to fix it than trillions on impoverishing economic policies that at best slightly delay it. It doesn’t matter; I’m the Luddite buffoon for thinking ethanol subsidies and windmills are boondoggles.

Even more outrageous: If you dispute, say, the necessity of spending billions on windmills or on killing the coal industry, you are not merely wrong on climate change, you are “anti-science.”

Intellectually, this is a monument of asininity so wide and tall, even the mind’s eye cannot glimpse its horizon or peak.

For starters, why are liberalism’s pet issues the lodestars of what constitutes scientific fact? Medical science informs us fetuses are human beings. The liberal response? “Who cares?” Genetically modified foods are safe, sayeth the scientists. “Shut up,” reply the liberal activists. IQ is partly heritable, the neuroscientists tell us. “Shut up, bigot,” the liberals shriek.

Which brings me to the raging hysteria over the plight of transgendered people who need to use the bathroom. 

The New York Times recently reported about A. J. Jackson’s travails in a Vermont high school. “There were practical issues,” Anemona Hartocollis writes. “When he had his period, he wondered if he should revert to the girls’ bathroom, because there was no place to throw away his used tampons.”

Now, one can have sympathy for the transgendered – I certainly do – while simultaneously holding to the scientific fact that boys do not menstruate. This is a fact far more settled than the very best climate science. Perhaps it’s rude to say so, but facts do not cease to be facts simply because they offend.

 In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio is pushing to fine businesses that do not address customers by their “preferred name, pronoun and title (e.g., Ms./Mrs.) regardless of the individual’s sex assigned at birth, anatomy, gender, medical history, appearance, or the sex indicated on the individual’s identification.” The NYC Commission on Human Rights can penalize offenders up to $250,000.

Many liberals believe that “denying” climate science should be a criminal offense while also believing that denying biological science is a moral obligation. 

In the law, truth is a defense against the charge of slander, but for liberals, inconvenient truth is no defense against the charge of bigotry.


Uncovering Misconduct at the EPA

On Wednesday, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform held a hearing to examine employee misconduct at the EPA. Misconduct has continued at the EPA despite repeated reform efforts and multiple hearings. Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) opened the hearing by calling the EPA “one of the most toxic places in the federal government to work.” That is a big claim, and one that should alarm conservatives and libertarians who consciously worry about corruption, protectionism, and bureaucracy in the federal government.

The hearing noted abuse and waste by federal employees at the expense of American taxpayers. Even more concerning to the committee members and those in attendance: nobody gets punished. Even in cases where EPA employees have cost the taxpayers thousands of dollars, nobody has been fired. If there are no consequences to robbing the American people, EPA employees will continue to take advantage of their positions.

Examples of employee abuses that have gone unpunished include repeatedly stealing from the EPA office and selling what was taken at pawn shops, and, commonly, spending thousands of taxpayer dollars while traveling. More than 60 cases have been closed in the past several months.

While specific examples given at the hearing were horrifying, it is important not to turn people into scapegoats. These employees must be held personally responsible for their actions, however, they are largely a product of a poisonous, bureaucratic culture at the EPA and are part of a wider trend of abuse and fraud that plagues nearly every government agency.

Waste goes beyond employee misconduct. As described in Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-Ky.) waste report published on April 25, there are 13 federal agencies currently conducting duplicative research on climate change. The agencies are spending more than $2.7 billion on independent research (the EPA contributes $20 million to that total). “One would think perhaps [other agencies] could just use data, research, and models from NOAA or [NASA] instead of reinventing the wheel,” argues the report, “paying 13 different agencies to do the same thing is pretty darn wasteful.”

“We are committed to holding our employees accountable,” testified Stanley Meiburg, Acting Deputy Administrator at the EPA, “we’ve made considerable progress.”

Meiburg attempted to highlight “positive changes” at the Agency, however, the room was not convinced. As conservatives, we know that waste of any kind at the federal level is not the result of isolated events. While Meiburg and the EPA are working to hold their employees accountable, we must all work to hold government bureaucracy accountable. Feckless spending and unquestioned abuse cannot be tolerated.


'He's just a hypocrite'. Fans unleash on Leo

Leonardo DiCaprio has long been seen as a champion for the environment but his latest act has many fans fuming.

Reports out of the US say that Leo partied with the style set in Cannes right up to the last minute, before taking a fuel-guzzling private jet to pick up a Big Fish award from Riverkeeper in NYC for caring about the environment.

Page Six reports that many of his loyal fans and fellow environmentalists have branded The Revenant star a hypocrite for his non eco-friendly method of transport.

The 41-year-old also used the private jet to whisk him back to France less than 24 hours later, so he could attend a gala event.

Mere months ago Academy Award winner used a large portion of his Oscars speech to bring awareness to global warming.

“Climate change is real,” the star warned. “It is happening right now, it is the most urgent threat facing our entire species.”

But since he’s been caught more than once for jet-setting around in private planes, many onlookers are starting to question his authority in being an advocate for the environment at all.

“Everyone saying he's some hero for protecting the environment,” a follower wrote on his Instagram account. “He’s just a hypocrite.”

Fans say Leonardo should practice what he preaches after he took a private jet to and from the awards. © Woman's Day Fans say Leonardo should practice what he preaches after he took a private jet to and from the awards. Another chimed in: “This is the guy who flew on a Private Jet 8,000 miles to accept an award. Environmentally friendly much?”

Others simply said they were now unfollowing the star for not practicing what he preaches.

It seems Leo's flippant use of the non eco-friendly mode of transport has struck a chord with fans who previously applauded the star for his environmental advocacy.


Plus ça change plus c'est la même chose

(The more there is change, the more things remain the same)

From Harpers Magazine of 1958


Communism is the solution to global warming!

Or so a Communist paper would have us believe:

By old-time Communist Deirdre Griswold

Environmentalists in capitalist countries are in a quandary over what to do about global warming. Even some of those most active in warning about the devastating consequences of atmospheric greenhouse gases have no solutions to propose except those based on “market mechanisms.” The main such scheme is called “carbon pricing.”

“The World Bank and International Monetary Fund are pressuring governments to impose a price tag on planet-warming carbon dioxide emissions,” reported the New York Times on April 28. This “solution” has been notably advanced by former Vice President Al Gore, whose company, Generation Investment Management, promotes carbon pricing.

The task of such a scheme is to convince investors that they will profit from higher prices for carbon fuels once those prices have been imposed across the board by governmental action. So it’s a win-win situation. Right? The capitalists continue to profit while higher prices lower the demand for carbon fuels, thereby helping the environment. That’s how this idea is being sold.

There are just two little problems.

First, it’s those who can least afford it — the workers — who will be stuck with the bills. The capitalists can pass on higher costs to their customers, but the workers can’t pass on to anybody else the higher costs of gasoline, coal, natural gas or the electricity generated from fossil fuels. And they’re not likely to have the upfront money it takes to buy a new car or a new furnace to benefit from less-polluting technology.

Second, there’s no proof that carbon pricing will decrease the demand for fossil fuels. Meanwhile, the clock is ticking. The recent fires in Alberta, Canada, are just one of the many disasters that show global warming is proceeding at an even faster pace than predicted earlier.

So if carbon pricing isn’t the answer, what is? What can be done that doesn’t depend on the capitalist market and keeping rich investors happy?

Where public ownership of the means of production allows for government planning of the economy, real changes can be made — now. Not just if and when investors can be convinced that their profits can be enhanced through greener speculation. The People’s Republic of China has shown much progress on this front.

China takes real steps away from CO2

The latest news is that a big change has been made in China’s economic plans regarding energy production. The country is continuing to move swiftly away from coal as a major source of energy. On April 25, the Chinese government announced that it would not build 200 new coal-fired power generators that had previously been part of its long-term economic plans.

It had already begun closing coal mines — thousands of them — while vastly increasing its solar, wind, hydro and nuclear capacity. It has allocated billions of dollars to relocate coal miners to new jobs. Now its plans have eliminated the construction of coal power plants that would have generated 105 gigawatts of power — “more than all the electricity-generating capacity of Britain from all sources.” (New York Times, April 26)

Coal is abundant in China. It has fueled the country’s rise as an industrial power. But it has also created terrible air pollution, in addition to adding CO2 to the atmosphere.

Clearly, China’s long-term economic planners are not tied to the profit system. They have the freedom to revise their plans based on much more important considerations than the capitalist market. That is not to say that there is not capitalism in China. Obviously, there is. But it is not the dominant economic system, nor does the capitalist class control the Chinese state.

China has the ability to control its economy and plan economic growth. It has lifted hundreds of millions of people out of poverty. This ability comes from a great socialist revolution that took decades, in which the masses vanquished the landlords, the capitalists and their imperialist backers.

The future of humanity hangs on the ability of the masses everywhere to break free of class and national oppression and take control of their own destiny.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


23 May, 2016

Warmists can be amusing: Lewandowski in particular

I have been  posting about the Green/Left 6 days a week for many years, so you would think I would be suffering from burnout by now.  But on the contrary, I often find the whole thing amusing.  The stuff that Warmists come out with in great seriousness is often so silly that one has to laugh.  And Stephan Lewandowski really is a lamebrain.

Here he is

He is a psychologist and has latched onto the old "ad hominem" Leftist idea that he can discredit conservative arguments by showing that conservatives are not right in the head.  Psychologists have been trying to do that at least since 1950 and they have come up with some lulus in the course of pursuing that goal.  The oddest one was their claim (p. 343) that Communist dictators such as Stalin, Khrushchev and Castro are conservative.  But if Communist leaders and ideologues  are conservatives, who is a Leftist?  More on that here and here.  And the "research" concerned has been much acclaimed!  It's pretty clear who the twisted minds actually are.  It is conservatives who are the normals.

One would feel sorry for Leftists if they were not so aggressive.  They are so desperate for self-validation that they will believe just about anything that tends to support their beliefs.

Lewandowski burst onto the Warmist scene with an alleged study of climate skeptics which did indeed do the job of finding them not right in the head.  The only problem was that there was absoutely no evidence that the people he "studied" were in fact a representative sample of climate skeptics.  There are in fact some grounds for concluding that many of those studied were in fact from the Green/Left.  Be that as it may, Lewandowski clearly has the typical psychologist's insouciance about sampling and thus conducted a study of no demonstrable generalizability.  He might as well have filled out all his questionaires by himself.

Lewandowski is such a nut that he even got himself disowned by the Warmist establishment.  All Warmists hate the "hiatus" in warming that has dominated this century and a couple of them  have tried various tricks to "abolish" it -- to show that there really has been no "hiatus".  And Lewandowski was one of those.  His work was so shoddy, however that in the Fyfe et al. paper the Warmist heavies disowned the claim and reaffirmed that there was a 21st century temperature slowdown, which they  explained as due to "special" factors. The joint authors of that paper were: John C. Fyfe, Gerald A. Meehl, Matthew H. England, Michael E. Mann, Benjamin D. Santer, Gregory M. Flato, Ed Hawkins, Nathan P. Gillett, Shang-Ping Xie, Yu Kosaka & Neil C. Swart.  Mann and Santer are particularly well-known Warmists.

Anyway, on to Lewandowski's latest brainwave  -- under the heading: "A blind expert test of contrarian claims about climate data".  I think I had better reproduce its abstract before I go any further:

"Although virtually all experts agree that CO2 emissions are causing anthropogenic global warming, public discourse is replete with contrarian claims that either deny that global warming is happening or dispute a human influence. Although the rejection of climate science is known to be driven by ideological, psychological, and political factors rather than scientific disagreement, contrarian views have considerable prominence in the media. A better understanding of contrarian discourse is therefore called for. We report a blind expert test of contrarian claims about climatological variables. Expert economists and statisticians were presented with representative contrarian statements (e.g., “Arctic ice is recovering”) translated into an economic or demographic context. In that blind test, contrarian claims were found to be misleading. By contrast, mainstream scientific interpretations of the data were judged to be accurate and policy relevant. The results imply that media inclusion of contrarian statements may increase bias rather than balance"

He starts out well  -- with a straw man argument.  He says that skeptics "either deny that global warming is happening or dispute a human influence".  There are some skeptics who hold those positions but by far the majority of skeptics concede the theory of some CO2-induced warming but just see no evidence or reasonable argument that it is anything but trivial in magnitude or urgent in any way.  In technical terms, they dispute the climate "sensitivity".

But you can accurately summarize what Lewandowski does above by saying that he examined skeptical arguments by not examining skeptical arguments. It is that bad.  Another lulu! Only a true believer would give it any credence.  I think anyone can see that the hole  in the bucket is the "translation" of skeptical arguments into some allegedly equivalent argument in another field.  I'm betting that my translations would have been very different.  And the selection of "experts" was probably another hole in the bucket.  Academe is heavily Leftist so getting sympathetic experts on board would have been a no-brainer.

Anyway, he provided me with the hour of entertainment that it took to write the above notes.

Australia: Warmists just LOVE the Great Barrier Reef

It enables them to tell SO many lies.  That coral "bleaching" (expulsion of symbiotic algae) has been happening for millions of years goes unmentioned below -- as is the fact that corals have in the past coped with far greater temperature variations than anything we have seen  recently.  And corals are still with us, funnily enough.

They do respond to temperature, among other things, but the "bleaching" is mainly in order to recruit different varieties of symbiotic algae.  And corals are hardier than they look.  In "bleached" form they can survive for quite a while on just their normal filter feeding.  "Bleached" corals are NOT dead.

And the present ocean warming is clearly due to El Nino, a temporary warming that is part of a natural cycle.  It's actually the La Nina that normally follows El Nino that is the biggest concern.  Corals are more likely to "bleach" in response to cooling than they are to warming. 

And let me again mention my favourite fact about coral:  In 1954 the USA exploded a 15 megaton thermonuclear device over Bikini atoll.  And Bikini atoll had lots of coral.  So there is no coral there at all now?  Far from it.  The corals there now are huge, abundant and thriving.  So if coral reefs can recover from an H-bomb blast, why is a pissy one degree temperature rise in GBR waters of concern?

Corals at Bikini atoll today

Strange that all that goes unmentioned below, isn't it?  You would not suspect any of it from the screeches below.  The words below are "an orchestrated litany of lies", to quote a distinguished judge on another matter.  The Waremists just want more funding and are prepared to lie and deceive to get it.  Global warming is a global racket dreamt up by scientists for the benefit of scientists

The Federal Government’s plan to save the Great Barrier Reef is “totally inadequate,” and if whoever forms government doesn’t commit at least $10 billion this election the natural wonder is likely to be doomed, scientists at James Cook University have said.

This extraordinary warning comes from leading water quality expert Jon Brodie and Emeritus Professor Richard Pearson, who are speaking out after they published a paper this week. In an interview this morning, Brodie said the Reef “will never be in its full gory again, we can’t expect that, [but]it’s going to get worse unless we do something”.

The Scientists said the twin threats of poor water quality and climate change could put the Reef in “terminal” decline within five years, unless whoever forms government comes to office with a comprehensive, cohesive, and adequately-funded rescue plan.

The Coalition Government has released a plan, known as Reef 2050, but it scarcely mentions climate change and Brodie said it is “totally inadequate”. “I’m probably the leading water quality expert for the Great Barrier Reef over the last 30 years and I’m saying the water quality [aspect of the plan]is absolutely inadequate,” he said.

“It was meant to be a comprehensive plan, of course, but as has been pointed out by everyone, and particularly the Australian Academy of Science, it’s totally inadequate,” he said.

The James Cook University scientists said catchment and coastal management programs need to be funded in the order of $1 billion per year over the next ten years. “We need a plan to fix up water quality as best we can, to provide some resilience against the oncoming climate change impacts,” Brodie said.

The Great Barrier Reef has made headlines over recent months as 93 per cent of the Reef, which is the only living structure that can be seen from space, has been affected by coral bleaching.

Fuelled by warming waters, the coral bleaching event was the worst in recorded history. The uncompromising heat was a result of an El Nino climate system, superimposed over baseline temperatures already pushed up by climate change.

“Before climate change kicked in we simply never saw bleaching,” Professor Terry Hughes has previously told New Matilda. “It’s quite confronting that we’ve now got to the stage that every El Nino event – and they happen every few years – is a threat to the Great Barrier Reef,” said Hughes, the Director of the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies.

The threats posed by climate change are exacerbated by plague-like outbreaks of Crown of Thorns Starfish, which are triggered by poor water quality. According to the James Cook University Scientists, the next outbreak is most likely to occur around 2025.

If we don’t make serious inroads at improving water quality by then, the fate of the Reef looks grim.

Brodie and Emeritus Professor Pearson are calling for management of the Reef to be extended beyond the bounds of the World Heritage Area, north to the Torres Strait, south to Hervey Bay, and inland to include the Great Barrier Reef catchment.

This would of course come at a cost. But Brodie points out that while $10 billion over ten years “may seem like a lot of money, we know that amount would be effective and it’s small by comparison to the economic worth of the Reef, which is around $20 billion per year”.

Current Federal funding, he said, “is almost nothing”. And that doesn’t look likely to change. “So far in the election campaign, we’ve seen no major commitments about the Great Barrier Reef at all from anybody really,” Brodie said.

The Great Barrier Reef Campaign Director at the Australian Marine Conservation Society, Imogen Zethoven said “the massive coral bleaching taking place right now on the Reef and the latest science over recent months all point in one direction: The outlook for the Reef is dire and we must act now.

“Things are worse than we thought for the Reef’s future, we are close to the brink of what this fragile ecosystem can tolerate without a credible plan for restoring it to good health,” she said.

“Australia’s current plans to protect the Reef are inadequate, short-sighted, lack appropriate funding and will not prevent its decline.”


British "ECO" house doesn't work

The building's high lustre varnish finish has gone and the gardens are in need of tender. It is the futuristic eco-mansion that enthralled viewers of hit TV show Grand Designs and was branded “awe-inspiring” by host Kevin McCloud. But all is not well at this luxury ­holiday home in the Lake District.

It appears to have been abandoned – and families who have booked stays there are getting worried.

Ultra-modern, seven-bedroom Dome House Boutique nestles in the hillside above Bowness-in-Windermere and has stunning views.

Architect and owner Robert Gaukroger spent two years building the unique property, all recorded by Channel 4 cameras.

It was designed to double as a family home and luxury self-catering holiday apartments. Yet over the past few weeks, locals have noticed it stands empty.

The gardens are looking scruffy and overgrown and there is no sign of the visionary proprietor.

His absence has been noted by ­paying customers. Some claim they have been left chasing £1,000 ­deposits and say they have struggled to get hold of Gaukroger to find answers.

And websites that formerly ­described the property in glowing terms are no longer accepting bookings.

Mum of-three Claire Farn was ­hoping to spend a week at the Dome in August after paying £1,000 for two families to stay. She heard nothing back for a month when she asked if her booking was still valid.

What may have worried her more is that Gaukroger has been trying, in vain, to sell the house for some time.

Last year the property was put on the market for £2.3million. Within months the price had plunged to £1.45million. It now appears to have been removed from sale altogether.

Earlier this year it emerged Gaukroger was planning to split the building into separate apartments and sell them off. There is little evidence to show that venture got off the ground, with architect Gaukroger still listed as the registered owner of the property.

The 7,000 sq ft contemporary ­wooden structure has a curved wild grass roof and suites with Scandinavian furnishings.

When presenter McCloud took his famous walk through the completed property in 2010, he raved over its pool, hot tub and sauna, four-poster beds and stunning views.

At the time, the ­owner was equally ­enthusiastic. He said: “Not only do I have a home but what looks like a flourishing business. After Grand Designs we had 100 bookings in a week.”

But since then some customers have complained about silence from the firm when they try ­updating bookings.

Mrs Farn heard ­nothing from Dome Boutique for a month. She received an email offering a full refund only on Friday morning after the Dome Boutique was contacted by the Sunday People. She said: “We couldn’t get in touch with anyone and were really worried about our holiday.

“I’d seen it on Grand Designs and thought it would be amazing to stay there. I found them on eBay for about £1,400-a-week. They said they could do a deal if we contacted them ­directly to avoid the eBay fees.”

After paying for the holiday they received a booking confirmation. But then things went quiet for weeks.

Claire said: “We started to get nervous. Then their website disappeared and so did the ­listing on eBay. We’ve tried phoning but there was ­either no answer or it was ­engaged.

“We finally got a response on Friday saying there had been ­problems and promising a refund.

“But do they realise how stressful this has been? Why didn’t they reply a month ago?”

Other customers turned to Facebook to try to find out what was going on. One wrote: “Dreadful ­behaviour, the way they’re treating people who have booked and paid up front for accommodation. Not at all honorable!”

Another posted: “I have a family booking for July 2016. I have emailed the owners but have not had a reply. Does anyone have an update? This may be serious for many people.”

In another post he wrote: “I have booked July. I cannot get a response from them. It’s all very suspicious. I have paid £1,490.” Neighbours said they had seen no guests at the Dome for 10 to 12 weeks.

One said: “If it is in trouble, it’s a real shame. It should be thriving. At the height of the season that place should be making £10,000-a-week.

“We know it’s been on the market for a while but they’ve not been able to find a buyer by the looks of things. It’s getting a little overgrown, they’ve not been maintaining it. “It’s in a fantastic location and is a wonderful building.”

A spokesman for Dome House admitted they had been ­experiencing problems and offered refunds. They said: “We have had a number of issues, including the pool heat and house heating ­system, which due to the bio-mass system had cause problems.

“The property had to cancel a booking at Easter. We already have May blocked out as a planned break. The follow summer season was ­intended to be the last season the property was to be offered as self-catering accommodation with a view to converting the property to affordable apartments.

“We have been looking into whether these bookings could be accommodated. Due to the nature of the bio-mass wood heating it does seem the house does not lend itself to self-catering with this system. If the electric back-up heater for the pool and heating fails it is unsatisfactory.

“With this in mind we are writing to guests to arrange refunds for the small number of bookings we have left.” Gaukroger and wife Milla told the Grand Designs show the whole project cost in excess of £1million.

They took out a £600,000 mortgage but had only another £100,000 in the bank when costs began to spiral.

They were relying on other business deals to finance the project but the ­economic climate worsened and the ­couple were left with a half-finished house.  Further problems saw them unable to pay creditors or the mortgage and a ­repossession order was issued. But after the house appeared on Grand Designs a woman offered them a loan. Gaukroger said: “She said it was clear this was my dream and she wanted to help.”

After completion the couple had to open part of the building as a bed and breakfast to earn cash to pay off the loan. They later changed it to self-catering.

When he put the property on the ­market last year Gaukroger said he was going to complete a postgraduate ­architectural qualification in London while building a new family home in Kent.

He said: “We have a loan to pay that we don’t want hanging over our heads. We will never be able to replace this house.”

One guest who had stayed there wrote on Trip Advisor: “Total disappointment. No heating or hot water in half the house. The pool was not working. There was a leaking radiator and a faulty freezer.”

Another said: “Although the house is potentially an amazing property, it did not meet our expectations.”


Salby Sees Little CO2 Driving Mechanism …Skeptical View Of CO2 Science Is In Fact ‘Textbook Science’

We routinely read from fellow skeptics that they wish Dr. Murry Salby’s research could be made available in written form, or perhaps in a peer-reviewed paper.

Indeed we do have access to his Youtube lecture research (at least a written summary of it) from an even better source than peer-reviewed paper: Dr. Murry Salby’s 2012 university-level textbook: Physics of the Atmosphere and Climate.

Here is a pdf link to the full textbook written by a world-renown expert on atmospheric physics (he’s published several dozen papers in the scientific literature on the subject). We therefore can effectively say that a skeptical view of the CO2-dominated climate paradigm is actually textbook science, not “fringe” science for the “3 percent”.

Below I’ve compiled a short list of some of the written statements from the textbook:

(a) temperature changes occur first and lead to CO2 emission from natural sources (e.g., more ocean outgassing upon warming, more CO2 retention as the ocean cools), indicating that warmer temperatures are driving up CO2 concentrations significantly more than human activity or fossil fuels;

(b) CO2 only accounts for a small portion of the greenhouse effect relative to water vapor/cloud; and

(c) our presumptions about paleoclimate CO2 concentrations are probably inaccurate (too low and too stable), as significant temperature fluctuations would have caused wider fluctuations in CO2 concentrations than current proxy-based reconstructions indicate.

Page 546:

“Together, emission from ocean and land sources (?150 GtC/yr) is two orders of magnitude greater than CO2 emission from combustion of fossil fuel. These natural sources are offset by natural sinks, of comparable strength. However, because they are so much stronger, even a minor imbalance between natural sources and sinks can overshadow the anthropogenic component of CO2 emission.”

And page 249:

“The vast majority of that [greenhouse] warming is contributed by water vapor. Together with cloud, it accounts for 98% of the greenhouse effect.”

Page 249/50:

“Surface temperature depends on the atmosphere’s optical depth. The latter, in turn, depends on atmospheric composition through radiatively active species. Water vapor is produced at ocean surfaces through evaporation. Carbon dioxide is produced by decomposition of of organic matter. These and other processes that control radiatively active species are temperature dependent.”

Page 253:

“Revealed by natural perturbations to the Earth-atmosphere system, the sensitivity accounts for much of the observed variation of CO2 emission on interannual time scales (Fig. 1.43). It establishes that GMT cannot increase without simultaneously increasing CO2 emission – from natural sources.”

Page 253:

“The results for the two periods are in broad agreement. Together with the strong dependence of CO2 emission on temperature (Fig. 1.43), they imply that a significant portion of the observed increase in r?CO2 derives from a gradual increase in surface temperature.”

Page 546:

“Warming of SST (by any mechanism) will increase the outgassing of CO2 while reducing its absorption. Owing to the magnitude of transfers with the ocean, even a minor increase of SST can lead to increased emission of CO2 that rivals other sources.”

Page 254:

“The resemblance between observed changes of CO2 and those anticipated from increased surface temperature also points to a major inconsistency between proxy records of previous climate. Proxy CO2 from the ice core record (Fig 1.13) indicates a sharp increase after the nineteenth century. At earlier times, proxy CO2 becomes amorphous: Nearly homogeneous on time scales shorter than millennial, the ice core record implies virtually no change of atmospheric CO2. According to the above sensitivity, it therefore implies a global-mean climate that is “static,” largely devoid of changes in GMT and CO2.

Proxy temperature (Fig. 1.45), on the other hand, exhibits centennial changes of GMT during the last millennium, as large as 0.5–1.0? K. In counterpart reconstructions, those changes are even greater (Section 1.6.2). It is noteworthy that, unlike proxy CO2 from the ice core record, proxy temperature in Fig. 1.45 rests on a variety of independent properties.

In light of the observed sensitivity, those centennial changes of GMT must be attended by significant changes of CO2 during the last millennium. They reflect a global-mean climate that is “dynamic,” wherein GMT and CO2 change on a wide range of time scales. The two proxies of previous climate are incompatible. They cannot both be correct.”

These statements fully correspond with some of the main themes of his lectures.


Orwellian Global Warming Dreams

In March a group of Democratic attorneys general formed “AG’s United for Clean Power.”

It sounds nice enough, doesn’t it? New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, standing beside a grinning Al Gore, announced that the gang was going after any energy providers and distributors who may have committed thought crimes such as questioning the human cause of the 0.8oC global warming since 1880.

MIT atmospheric scientist Richard Lindzen said the appropriate response to this tiny warming is to shrug and say, “So what?” It is a tiny fraction of the daily temperature change in most places, and a smaller fraction of the seasonal temperature change. But at the AGs’ meeting Al Gore called it a “climate crisis.”

The state AGs are in lockstep with federal Attorney General Loretta Lynch, who recently said she is considering legal actions against “climate change deniers” (a nonexistent species, since no one denies that climate changes).

You may wonder how this could be possible in the United States, where freedom of speech is guaranteed in the Constitution.

Imagine a society in which one is under near-ubiquitous surveillance. Such a vision is remarkably close to the reality of 21st century America, if the words of Supreme Court Justice Steven Breyer are to be believed. In statements regarding a recent case he said, “If you win this case, then there is nothing to prevent the police or the government from monitoring 24 hours a day the public movement of every citizen of the United States.”

We’re already under a voluntary microscope with tools like Facebook. Small wonder that politicians desire a similar bonanza. With total data coverage, attorneys general will find it easy to harm those who are not in total support of correct political priorities. Justice Breyer thought such a possibility resembled, too closely for comfort, the dystopian society George Orwell wrote of in his novel 1984.

In more than this we resemble Orwell’s Oceania, which had its own form of twisted English called Newspeak. Newspeak was carefully devised to meet the ideological needs of Ingsoc, or English Socialism. It made it difficult, nearly impossible, for the common prole to have incorrect ideas. Newspeak, as a mode of expression, acted to develop correct mental habits and make all other thoughts inconceivable.

“It was intended,” wrote Orwell, “that when Newspeak had been adopted once and for all and Oldspeak forgotten, a heretical thought, that is, a thought diverging from the principles of Ingsoc, should be literally unthinkable, at least so far as thought is dependent on words.”

This brings me to global warming. The term occurs frequently in Al Gore’s 1992 book, Earth in the Balance (I stopped counting at 81 times). But when Mr. Gore stood beside the attorneys general there was not even a nostalgic reference to global warming. It has passed out of the memory tubes governed by Newspeak.

The problem with global warming is its precision. The words global and warming have precise and well-understood meanings. Global refers to an all-encompassing entity, in this case geographically specified—the planet Earth. Earth is a medium-sized planet located in space approximately 1.5×1011 m from its closest star. And Earth is warmer, on average, now than it was in the past—well, the late 14th through early 19th centuries, anyway. (It’s also cooler now, on average, than it was in the Holocene Climate Optimum, and probably also the Minoan Warm Period, the Roman Warm Period, and the Medieval Warm Period, but polite conversation doesn’t encompass such inconvenient truths.)

This is hardly groundbreaking. Our planet has had many periods of warming and cooling.

The AGs insist the direct cause of escalating temperatures is rising atmospheric concentration of CO2—the gas of life—driven by the European and American economic boom post World War II. They warn that warming will become catastrophic unless emissions are stopped.

But the modest warming has stopped while emissions have skyrocketed. This is opposite to the warming computer models predicted. There has been no warming trend from 1997 to the present. (The short-term warming of the first few months of 2016 is due to an unusually, but not unprecedentedly, strong El Niño in the south Pacific and does not constitute a trend.)

Today those who question the idea of a runaway global warming caused by human CO2 emissions are called deniers. What precisely the deniers deny is never quite specified. That is the point in Newspeak. It is sufficient to wrap words related to rationality and objectivity in the single word denier. Greater precision would be dangerous.

It is the flat line of no warming for almost 20 years that also makes “global warming” unacceptable. It is too precise.

Changing to terms such as Al Gore’s “climate crisis” has the conscious purpose of subtly changing the meaning, by cutting out most of the associations that would otherwise cling to the more precise term.

Climate crisis and climate change are terms that can be uttered almost without taking thought, whereas global warming is a phrase over which one is obliged to linger at least momentarily. So linger a while before the attorneys general make it a thought crime to hold a different opinion.


Portland Public Schools bans material that casts doubt on climate change

The Portland Public Schools Board on Tuesday decided to ban any classroom materials that cast doubt on climate change. The resolution passed unanimously and requires that textbooks and other material purchased by the district present climate change as a fact rather than theory.

Material will also need to present human activity as one of the phenomenon's causes.

In testimony to the board, Bill Bigelow, a former Portland teacher, told district officials that "we don't want kids in Portland learning material courtesy of the fossil fuel industry."

Bigelow said that material that treats climate change as anything other than fact is published by companies making concessions for fossil fuel companies. He pointed to words such as "might," "may" and "could" in educational materials.

The story started making waves on Friday when The Blaze, a conservative news site founded by Glenn Beck, picked it up. U.S. News and World Report also picked it up, which incited one commenter to say, "Well this is special....ban books because you dont (sic) agree with the context. Sounds like teaching professionals promoting a very personal and liberal agenda."

Republican representatives in Congress agree, but it seems America's conservative politicians are alone in this regard — much of the world's right-leaning leaders have urged action on climate change. In the U.S., the Environmental Protection Agency has been doing the same, calling it a public health issue.

Even entertainers have gotten into the action. Jimmy Kimmel earlier this month urged viewers to be skeptical of a documentary endorsed by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin that casts doubt on climate change. Instead, Kimmel said during a segment on his late-night show, Americans should be listening to scientists.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


22 May, 2016

Some pretty pictures of snow and ice that allegedly prove global warming

I am not going to reproduce any of the pictures as it is just typical Leftist cherry-picking.  You can pick pictures to show almost anything.  It is statistics you need if you are to generalize.  And, overall, polar ice has been INCREASING.

So how come all the pretty pictures?  Mainly because glaciers are always changing -- mostly in response to precipitation.  Glaciers that are getting more snowfall than usual will be advancing and glaciers getting less will be retreating.  And there are always glaciers doing both.  The Franz Josef glacier in New Zealand is a good example.  Up unti a few years ago was notable for its rapid advance.  Now it is retreating.

Kilimanjaro is another example.  Once it was almost bare of snow but it has since bounced back.  And it's only at the stage that suits their religion did the Warmists mention either of them

And their deception is not even clever.  For Kilimanjaro they show a comparison between 1993 and 2000.  But what about 2016?  For that see below:

More snow than ever. That shows you how they operate.  They are arrant crooks

And their logic is very strange. Their two pictures of flooding in Australia were taken only two months apart.  So does that prove global warming?  Did drastic warming happen over just two months?  Hardly.  All they show is that Australia's floods are short-lived, which all Australians know. Our chronic problem is drought

I guess I could go on to dismantle all their trickery but I am not going to give any more time to gross propaganda.  Just some of their text excerpted below.  Click SOURCE to see the pictures

They have been locked in ice for hundreds, if not thousands of years, but newly released images have revealed just how fast the landscapes of Antarctica and the Arctic have changed.

The incredible pictures, released by Nasa, show how melting, and flooding, have transformed iconic landscapes around the world.

While some of the images, taken years apart, reveal long-term impacts that have been attributed to climate change, others show changes on a shorter scale due to shifting seasons or storms.

The shocking image comparisons are perhaps at their most dramatic when picturing the glaciers in Alaska.

An image taken in the summer 1917 of the Pederson Glacier shows mountains of ice floating in water. Yet, a photograph taken in the same spot in 2005 shows green pastures and a sparse covering of snow and ice in the surrounding hills.

In another pair of images taken of Northwestern Glacier, in Alaska, almost all the ice can be seen to have melted within just 65 years. In the summer of 1940, the glacier glacier can be seen snaking down from the peaks into the water, where chunks of ice float.

By summer 2005, the picture is completely different. Where once there was white snow and ice, the dark grey and black of the rock, with the occasional hint of green vegetation, dominates while the water is completely clear. Just a few hints of snow remain hidden among the highest peaks in the distance.

The ice and snow on the top of Africa's tallest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, can be seen disappearing. On the left shows a thick cap of snow on February 17, 1993 and on the right it has reducted in February 21, 2000 Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa

Southern Australia, October 9, 2010Flooding in southern Australia December 12, 2010.  A series of thunderstorms led to flooding in southern Australia in 2010 affecting 200,000 people. The left image was taken on October 9, 2010 while the image on the right was taken December 12, 2010

Other images show dramatic changes caused by flooding and fire, urban development and deforestation. 


Warming stops depression

Warmists are constantly making hokey claims about warming being bad for you.  So it should be of some interest to read below a proper academic study which shows that warmth can be beneficial.  It might in fact make us all more cheerful

Whole-Body Hyperthermia for the Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder: A Randomized Clinical Trial

By Janssen CW et al.


IMPORTANCE: Limitations of current antidepressants highlight the need to identify novel treatments for major depressive disorder. A prior open trial found that a single session of whole-body hyperthermia (WBH) reduced depressive symptoms; however, the lack of a placebo control raises the possibility that the observed antidepressant effects resulted not from hyperthermia per se, but from nonspecific aspects of the intervention.

OBJECTIVE: To test whether WBH has specific antidepressant effects when compared with a sham condition and to evaluate the persistence of the antidepressant effects of a single treatment.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS:  A 6-week, randomized, double-blind study conducted between February 2013 and May 2015 at a university-based medical center comparing WBH with a sham condition. All research staff conducting screening and outcome procedures were blinded to randomization status. Of 338 individuals screened, 34 were randomized, 30 received a study intervention, and 29 provided at least 1 postintervention assessment and were included in a modified intent-to-treat efficacy analysis. Participants were medically healthy, aged 18 to 65 years, met criteria for major depressive disorder, were free of psychotropic medication use, and had a baseline 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale score of 16 or greater.

INTERVENTIONS: A single session of active WBH vs a sham condition matched for length of WBH that mimicked all aspects of WBH except intense heat.

MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Between-group differences in postintervention Hamilton Depression Rating Scale scores.

RESULTS: The mean (SD) age was 36.7 (15.2) years in the WBH group and 41.47 (12.54) years in the sham group. Immediately following the intervention, 10 participants (71.4%) randomized to sham treatment believed they had received WBH compared with 15 (93.8%) randomized to WBH. When compared with the sham group, the active WBH group showed significantly reduced Hamilton Depression Rating Scale scores across the 6-week postintervention study period (WBH vs sham; week 1: -6.53, 95% CI, -9.90 to -3.16, P?<?.001; week 2: -6.35, 95% CI, -9.95 to -2.74, P?=?.001; week 4: -4.50, 95% CI, -8.17 to -0.84, P?=?.02; and week 6: -4.27, 95% CI, -7.94 to -0.61, P?=?.02). These outcomes remained significant after evaluating potential moderating effects of between-group differences in baseline expectancy scores. Adverse events in both groups were generally mild.

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Whole-body hyperthermia holds promise as a safe, rapid-acting, antidepressant modality with a prolonged therapeutic benefit.

JAMA Psychiatry. 2016 May 12. doi: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2016.1031

Is the green’s ‘Daddy Warbucks’ helping the planet or himself?

Any comprehensive review of green energy and its politics and policies has to include the name of wealthy liberal Tom Steyer — who has been called the environmental movement’s new “Daddy Warbucks.”  Having made his billions from his tenure atop Farallon Capital Management—much of it from coal projects around the world — Steyer apparently had an environmental epiphany and now wants to atone for his past sins by trying to save the planet from manmade climate change.

He is using his wallet to try to elect candidates who will promote policies and energy plans that agree with him. And that plan is “green.” As I’ve previously reported, he spent nearly $75 million in the 2014 midterms and intends to top that for the 2016 election cycle. Steyer–– a long-time donor to Democratic causes –– was a 2008 Hillary Clinton supporter. After her campaign failed, he emerged as a bundler for Obama in 2008 and again in 2012. Additionally, Steyer is a Clinton Foundation donor, and last year, at his San Francisco home, he held an expensive fundraiser for Clinton’s 2016 presidential run.

Along with researcher Christine Lakatos, whose Green Corruption File was recently praised on the Michael Savage Show, I’ve repeatedly addressed Steyer’s involvement through our work on President Obama’s Green-Energy Crony-Corruption Scandal. Anytime there is a pot of government money available for green energy, as Lakatos found, Steyer’s name seems to be attached to it. Some of the most noteworthy include: Sungevity, ElectraTherm, and Project Frog — all funded by Greener Capital (now EFW Capital), which is a venture firm that invests in renewable energy, with Steyer as a known financial backer.

Steyer claims to have “no self-interest” in his political activism. The Los Angeles Times quotes him as saying: “We’re doing something we think is good for everyone.” Yet, as Forbes columnist Loren Steffy points out, he is spending his fortune lobbying for “short term political gains” rather than into research and development “aimed at making renewables economically viable.”

While he may say what he is doing is good for everyone, the policies he’s pushing are good for him — not for “everyone.” The Washington Post called him: “The man who has Obama’s ear when it comes to energy and climate change.” In California, where he has been a generous supporter of green energy policies, he helped pass Senate Bill 350 that calls for 50 percent renewable energy by 2030. California’s current mandate is 33 percent by 2020—which California’s three investor-owned utilities are, reportedly, “already well on their way to meeting.” It is no surprise that California already has some of the highest electricity rates in the country. Analysis released last week found that states with policies supporting green energy have much higher power prices. In October, Steyer spent six figures for an ad campaign calling for the next president to adopt a national energy policy similar to California’s: “50 percent clean energy mix in the U.S. by 2030” — which will raise everyone’s rates.

With Steyer’s various green-energy investments, these rate-increasing plans are good for him but bad for everyone else — especially those who can least afford it. And, it is the less affluent, I recently learned, he’s targeting with predatory loans for solar panels through Kilowatt Financial, LLC, (KWF) — a company that listed him as “manager” on corporate documents. KWF recently merged with Clean Power Finance and became “Spruce.” The financing structure used, according to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), allows “homeowners to get solar systems at no upfront cost and then to pay monthly for the use of the power generated. Homeowners end up saving on their total electricity use, while financing companies get steady revenue over 20 years.” WSJ, points out, the KWF financing can be offered to “people who wouldn’t be approved otherwise.”

In the KWF model, contracted payments come from homeowners and “create a steady and reliable income stream, part of which is owned by its venture investors, including Kleiner Perkins.” About the arrangement, KWF chairman and Chief Executive Daniel Pillmer said: “Kleiner Perkins will make a lot of money.” Apparently, the money to be made is from selling the loans that are then securitized on Wall Street — much like the “sub-prime” mortgage crisis that offered loans to people who couldn’t qualify with “traditional lenders.” KWF’s website brags: “We support financing terms for almost every customer and provide ways for dealers to participate in the pricing process to generate even more approvals and create even lower consumer rates.” KWF offers “Instant Approvals, even for customers with lower credit scores” and “Same-as-Cash and Deferred Payment Offers.” In these types of payment plans, a low rate is usually offered in the beginning and increases retroactively if all the terms of the loan are not met.

In this model, the homeowners don’t actually own the solar systems — which means KWF receives the benefit of the federal tax incentives, such as the 30 percent federal “Investment Tax Credit,” designed to benefit the owner of the solar system.

It is practices like this that have drawn the ire of Congress. Several congressional Democrats sent a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau that warned about the similarities between the solar industry and what led to the subprime mortgage crisis: “easy initial financial terms, increased demand and a rapidly expanding industry.” These factors create a high risk potential that could, ultimately, be harmful to consumers. Similarly, Republicans sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission that noted pressure from Wall Street is reportedly leading companies who use “potentially deceptive sales tactics” — which doesn’t sound like it is something that is “good for everyone.”

Yet, it is these very types of finance products, promoted by Steyer’s Kilowatt Financial that Greentech Media reports are “doing well.”

While Steyer claims to want to give everyone a “fair shake,” his pet policies increase costs for everyone, and offer a hand-shake for Wall Street. Steyer and his billionaire buddies win, “everyone” else loses — and that is a big part of the green-energy crony-corruption scandal


Who Are the Real Deniers of Science?

The left has long claimed that it has something of a monopoly on scientific expertise. For instance, long before Al Gore started making millions by claiming that anyone who disagreed with his apocalyptic prophecies was “anti-science,” there were the “scientific socialists.” “Social engineer” is now rightly seen as a term of scorn and derision, but it was once a label that progressive eggheads eagerly accepted.

Masking opinions in a white smock is a brilliant, albeit infuriating and shabby, rhetorical tactic. As the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously said, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.” Science is the language of facts, and when people pretend to be speaking it, they’re not only claiming that their preferences are more than mere opinions, they’re also insinuating that anyone who disagrees is a fool or a zealot for objecting to “settled science.”

Put aside the fact that there is no such thing as settled science. Scientists are constantly questioning their understanding of things; that is what science does. All the great scientists of history are justly famous for overturning the assumptions of their fields. The real problem is that in politics, invocations of science are very often marketing techniques masquerading as appeals to irrefutable authority. In an increasingly secular society, having science on your side is better than having God on your side — at least in an argument.

I’m not saying that you can’t have science in your corner, or that lawmakers shouldn’t look to science when making policy. (Legislation that rejects the existence of gravity makes for very silly laws indeed.) But the real intent behind so many claims to “settled science” is to avoid having to make your case. It’s an undemocratic technique for delegitimizing opposing views and saying “shut up” to dissenters.

For example, even if the existence of global warming is “settled,” the policies for how to best respond to it are not. But in the political debates about climate change, activists say that their climatological claims are irrefutable and so are their preferred remedies.

If climate change is the threat they claim, I’d rather spend billions on geoengineering to fix it than trillions on impoverishing economic policies that at best slightly delay it. It doesn’t matter; I’m the Luddite buffoon for thinking ethanol subsidies and windmills are boondoggles.

Even more outrageous: If you dispute, say, the necessity of spending billions on windmills or on killing the coal industry, you are not merely wrong on climate change, you are “anti-science.”

Intellectually, this is a monument of asininity so wide and tall, even the mind’s eye cannot glimpse its horizon or peak.

For starters, why are liberalism’s pet issues the lodestars of what constitutes scientific fact? Medical science informs us fetuses are human beings. The liberal response? “Who cares?” Genetically modified foods are safe, sayeth the scientists. “Shut up,” reply the liberal activists. IQ is partly heritable, the neuroscientists tell us. “Shut up, bigot,” the liberals shriek.

Which brings me to the raging hysteria over the plight of transgendered people who need to use the bathroom.

The New York Times recently reported about A.J. Jackson’s travails in a Vermont high school. “There were practical issues,” Anemona Hartocollis writes. “When he had his period, he wondered if he should revert to the girls' bathroom, because there was no place to throw away his used tampons.”

Now, one can have sympathy for the transgendered — I certainly do — while simultaneously holding to the scientific fact that boys do not menstruate. This is a fact far more settled than the very best climate science. Perhaps it’s rude to say so, but facts do not cease to be facts simply because they offend.

In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio is pushing to fine businesses that do not address customers by their “preferred name, pronoun and title (e.g., Ms./Mrs.) regardless of the individual’s sex assigned at birth, anatomy, gender, medical history, appearance, or the sex indicated on the individual’s identification.” The NYC Commission on Human Rights can penalize offenders up to $250,000.

Many liberals believe that “denying” climate science should be a criminal offense while also believing that denying biological science is a moral obligation.

In the law, truth is a defense against the charge of slander, but for liberals, inconvenient truth is no defense against the charge of bigotry.


Sheer ignorance of EPA head

At the 2016 Planet Forward Summit last month, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy riled “climate deniers,” accusing them of ignoring myriad data for political expediency. “Climate deniers are not about a lack of data,” she asserted. “They’re … deniers as to whether or not the solutions, once you recognize the problem, are going to be to their advantage or not.”

However, last July, when asked by Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, “What percentage of the atmosphere is CO2?” McCarthy replied: “I don’t have that calculation for you sir.”

And just a few months prior, in March 2015, Sen. Jeff Sessions pointed out to McCarthy the terrible track record when it comes to computer projections. McCarthy response? “I do not know what the models actually are predicting that you’re referring to,” McCarthy conceded. She continued, “[O]n the whole it makes no difference to the validity and the robustness of climate science that is telling us that we are facing an absolute challenge that we must address [emphasis added].”

So the woman who admittedly doesn’t even look at the data has the chutzpah to lecture “deniers” about denying said erroneous data. Who again is seeking to take advantage?


Exxon still skeptical

A Greenie has a moan below

This spring, though free of my personal Exxon holdings, I couldn’t resist taking a peek at the company’s mailing to shareholders in advance of its 2016 annual meeting, in Dallas on May 25. The proxy package opens with a letter from Exxon Chairman and CEO Rex Tillerson. Reading it, I had a momentary flash of hope. “Your vote is important to us,” he writes, referring, in part, to a raft of shareholder proposals whose adoption could have real impact on the company’s environmental policies and practices. My hopes were dashed, though, as I continued reading. Each suggested reform was followed by the same stern directive: “The Board recommends that you vote against this proposal.”

One shareholder proposal calls on Exxon to appoint an independent climate expert to its board of directors. This would be a good way for the company to show that it is committed to giving more serious attention to the global-warming challenge. In recommending a “no” vote, Exxon explains that periodic briefings by Exxon staff and outside experts provide the board with all the information it needs on climate change. It also argues that Exxon board members should have “expertise in managing large, relatively complex organizations and be accustomed to dealing with complex situations with worldwide scope.” I couldn’t help wondering: What “situation” is more complex or wider in scope than potentially cataclysmic climate change? And what issue is more fundamental to the viability of a global corporation that has staked its future on the burning of fossil fuels?

Another group of shareholders — the United Steelworkers — seeks fuller disclosure of Exxon’s lobbying outlays. In calling for an annual report on the company’s efforts to influence environmental laws and policies that may affect Exxon business interests, the Steelworkers point to Exxon’s membership in the American Legislative Exchange Council, which spearheads many of the most strident state-level campaigns attacking policies favorable to renewable energy. Exxon urges shareholders to reject fuller lobbying disclosure, asserting that its periodic reports to Congress and various state and local jurisdictions, “as required by law,” provide “sufficient transparency and accountability.” Why make it any easier for scrappy shareholders, or the public at large, to track the company’s massive and often secretive lobbying campaigns?

Perhaps most disturbing is the board’s dismissal of a shareholder proposal urging Exxon to endorse an upper limit on the amount of global warming that our planet and its inhabitants can endure. The proposal suggests that the global average temperature should not be allowed to rise more than 2º C above its pre-industrial level — hardly a radical notion, as it simply echoes the terms of the Paris climate accord, agreed to by 195 nations in December. In fact, the Paris agreement warns that an even lower ceiling, keeping the global average temperature within 1.5º C of the pre-industrial level, will be needed to preserve some semblance of climate stability.

How does Exxon explain its rejection of these caps, overwhelmingly accepted by nations large and small, industrialized and developing? It says that it prefers to pursue “practical, achievable solutions … rather than focusing on a future global temperature stabilization outcome that ultimately will be dictated by many variables beyond the company’s control.”

In other words, because Exxon’s actions alone will not shape the dimensions and depth of a future climate crisis, widely credited scientific warnings about the need to keep global warming within specific bounds can be held at arm’s length. Managing Exxon’s massive internal operations (drilling, refining, distribution) and its sale of 5.8 million barrels of petroleum products per day is tough enough without the added headache of worrying about the company’s contribution to climate change.

Another shareholder, the New York State Common Retirement Fund, calls for a report on how domestic and international climate change policies will affect Exxon’s oil and gas holdings. This, too, is rejected. Exxon reasons that demand for its products is growing, not shrinking, and that it will take many decades for the world to shift to a lower-carbon economy. With all that growth in fossil fuel use, shareholders needn’t be concerned that the company’s “proven hydrocarbon reserves are, or will become, stranded.” This, of course, ignores the inconvenient truth that existing national and international policies, not to mention future ones, will require us to leave substantial portions of known reserves of oil, gas, and coal in the ground. How else might we keep our planet from burning its way through the temperature limits set by the Paris accord?

Navigating America toward a more sustainable energy future won’t be easy. Vision, rather than obfuscation and denial, must guide the efforts of governments, corporations, and institutions. Someday, we can only hope, the world’s leading oil and gas company will face up to this challenge.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


20 May, 2016

Munshi on the warpath again

I am a great admirer of the work of Jamal Munshi.  He really hits Warmists where it would hurt if they were real scientists.  As it is, of course, neither evidence nor logic is really of interest to them.

In the paper below, he hits at the most basic assertion of Warmism: That fossil fuel emissions influence the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere.

I have read the full paper and have no quarrel with its theory or methodology.  I am however a little uneasy at the criterion used for statistical significance.  He uses the more severe standard emanating from all the recent work on unreproducible results.  And none of the effects he observed survive application of that criterion.  By the traditional .05 criterion, however, we do see a weak but significant effect.  So the findings could in fact be sen as consistent with industrial CO2 emissions having an effect -- but a very slight one.  But there is certainly nothing like the dominant effect that Warmists assume

Changes in the 13C/12C Ratio of Atmospheric CO2 1977-2014


Data for the 13C fraction in atmospheric CO2 from six different measurement stations in the sample period 1977-2014 are studied to estimate its dilution by fossil fuel emissions. No correlation between the annual rate of fossil fuel emissions and annual change in the 13C fraction of atmospheric CO2 is found. We conclude that the 13C data for atmospheric CO2 do not serve as empirical evidence that changes in atmospheric CO2 since the Industrial Revolution can be attributed to fossil fuel emissions.


Is Antarctica about to lose a huge chunk of ice?
These guys are incredible.  From the headline above you would think that the event concerned is imminent.  Read a bit further down, however, and you find that they are talking about next century.  They cannot predict next week's weather but they can predict next century's?  This is the most gross speculation and, as such, deserving of no attention

Giant slabs of sea ice carving off of glaciers and crumbling into the sea could become a common sight if the climate continues to warm, warn scientists.

The bleak outlook comes from a new study in which researchers claim that the Antarctic ice could shrink by 186 miles (300 km) if the climate change continues unabated.

Such a huge loss of sea ice would result in global sea levels rising by almost three metres over the course of the next few centuries, they add.

An international group of scientists, comprising researchers from the UK, Australia, New Zealand and the US, made the predictions based on measurements of a huge glacier in the Antarctic.

Totten Glacier drains one of the largest ice masses in the world, the East Antarctic Ice Sheet.

By studying how the glacier has grown and shrank over time, they found that it may be teetering on the edge of a critical threshold.

Scientists say that if climate change continues on the ‘business as usual’ trajectory – without intervention – the glacier could cross this threshold sometime in the next century, leading to an irreversible melting on a massive scale and causing the glacier to retreat rapidly.

The evidence coming together is painting a picture of East Antarctica being much more vulnerable to a warming environment than we thought,’ said Professor Martin Siegert, co-director of the Grantham Institute at Imperial College London.

‘This is something we should worry about. Totten Glacier is losing ice now, and the warm ocean water that is causing this loss has the potential to also push the glacier back to an unstable place.’

According to the researchers, the glacier’s rapid retreat would cause it to withdraw up to 300 kilometres inland over the following centuries. The vast quantities of water locked up in the ice would be released, contributing as much as 2.9 metres to global sea-level rise.

Antarctica has been a complex system to study, as despite the warming average global temperature, the region has gained ice mass - contrasting the rapid loss seen in the northern polar regions.

But despite these gains, the warming waters are causing chunks of ice to crumble into the sea, just as is seen in the north.

While the gains may outweigh the losses at the moment, as more of the ice sheet crumbles, it exposes more of the ice to warming waters which causes further melting.


Wow!  Somebody who knows what he is talking about on coral bleaching

There is a long article on Watts that reviews the science of what is known of the coral reef life-cycle.  It has lots of surprises for people who have heard only the cries of disaster from Warmists.  The single fact that stood out to me was that coral bleaching is most often a response to COOLING, not warming.

The article gives particular attention to the utterances of Warmists like Hoagy and completely demolishes them.  It gives good grounds for regarding Hoagy as nothing but a fraud.

I have previously noted that coral bleaching is not coral death and that corals are very resilient to damage but this article gives chapter and verse of that.  Anyone interested in the health of coral reefs needs to read this article.  You will laugh at all future Warmist claims if you do.

Increased vegetation in the Arctic region may counteract global warming


Climate change creates more shrub vegetation in barren, Arctic ecosystems. A new study shows that organisms, such as bacteria and fungi, are triggered to break down particularly nutritious dead parts of shrubbery. Meanwhile, the total amount of decomposition is reducing. This could have an inhibiting effect on global warming.

Climate change creates more shrub vegetation in barren, arctic ecosystems. A study at Lund University in Sweden shows that organisms, such as bacteria and fungi, are triggered to break down particularly nutritious dead parts of shrubbery. Meanwhile, the total amount of decomposition is reducing. This could have an inhibiting effect on global warming.

A large amount of the Earth's carbon and nitrogen is stored in arctic ecosystems where the ground is permanently frozen, known as permafrost. Climate change causes such soil to heat up. Johannes Rousk at Lund University, together with colleagues Kathrin Rousk och Anders Michelsen from the University of Copenhagen and the Center for Permafrost (CENPERM), have conducted field studies outside Abisko in the very north of Sweden, studying what happens to the decomposition of organic material as the climate gets warmer.

"As the Arctic region becomes warmer, more shrubs start to grow, rather than moss which is difficult to break down. The shrubs have leaves and roots that are easy to break down and secrete sugar. What we have shown is that decomposition organisms, such as bacteria and fungi, are triggered to look for nutrient-rich organic materials that contain more nitrogen, while decomposition as a whole is reduced," says Johannes Rousk.

When the nutrient-rich material is decomposed, the nutrient-poor part of the organic material is enriched, probably causing the amount of carbon to increase. Current climate models do not consider the connection between increased shrub vegetation as a result of ongoing climate change, and soil becoming less nutritious.

"It will be exciting to see how this will affect the soil carbon turnover in the long term. Perhaps our results will help complement future climate models," says Johannes Rousk.

Today no one knows what less nutritious soil in the Arctic ecosystem and an overall decreased decomposition of organic material will lead to. However, Johannes Rousk dares to venture a guess:

"I suspect it will have an inhibiting effect on global warming," he says.


Journal Reference: Kathrin Rousk, Anders Michelsen, Johannes Rousk. Microbial control of soil organic matter mineralisation responses to labile carbon in subarctic climate change treatments. Global Change Biology, 2016; DOI: 10.1111/gcb.13296

Relax: Extensive Study Says GMOs Are Beneficial

A new report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, titled “Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects,” bodes well for advocates of genetically engineered (modified) crops. According to NBC News, the study found:

“There is no evidence of large-scale health effects on people from genetically modified foods

"There is some evidence that crops genetically engineered to resist bugs have benefited people by reducing cases of insecticide poisoning

"Genetically engineered crops to benefit human health, such as those altered to produce more vitamin A, can reduce blindness and deaths die to vitamin A deficiency

"Using insect-resistant or herbicide-resistant crops did not damage plant or insect diversity and in some cases increased the diversity of insects.

"Sometimes the added genes do leak out to nearby plants — a process called gene flow — but there is no evidence it has caused harm.

"In general, farmers who use GM soybean, cotton, and corn make more money but it does depend on how bad pests are and farming practices.

"GM crops do reduce losses to pests

"If farmers use insect-resistant crops but don’t take enough care, sometimes pest insects develop resistance”

There’s nothing particularly alarming in those bullet points, and in fact the news is mostly positive. And this study agrees with what numerous other studies show — GMOs are safe and effective.

This only adds to the silliness of Vermont to mandate GMO labels. If Democrats are so worried about hunger in both America and around the world, why do they continue waging a war against a promising and health-smart solution?


That good ol' Green/Left projection again

She sees in skeptics what is true of herself.  If you want to see what is true of Lreftists, see what they say of conservatives.  As ego-maniacs they know only themselves.  So she attributes attitudes to self-interest, in the traditional Marxist way.  She fails to face the fact that Warmism suits her very well

Speaking at Planet Forward 2016, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy says that climate change is “impacting public health” and “every human being on the face of this Earth”. McCarthy says that ‘Climate deniers are not about a lack of data. They’re deniers as to whether or not the solutions, once you recognize the problem, are going to be to their advantage or not.”

ADMINISTRATOR MCCARTHY: “…if you think that climate change isn’t impacting public health then you have to open your eyes and take a closer look because the data is there, the understanding is there. And, so while EPA struggles to bring good quality air to everybody, safe drinking water, healthy safe places for kids to live and work, we also have to recognize that an unstable climate is impacting every human being on the face of this Earth, and if we do not do something, you are the very people whose future is being robbed and taken from you.” […]

FRANK SESNO: “How about more science in our leaders? How about more data?”

ADMINISTRATOR MCCARTHY: “You know I don’t know if it’s more data or forcing people to look at the data. I mean really. Climate deniers are not about a lack of data. They’re deniers as to whether or not the solutions, once you recognize the problem, are going to be to their advantage or not.”



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


19 May, 2016

China building at sea level

On DISSECTING LEFTISM yesterday, I wrote about China's island-building in the East China sea.  I pointed out that there were both good military and good economic reasons for building the islands and that they are there to stay.

What is amusing about it, however, is that the islands are just  slightly above sea level -- which shows that China does NOT believe the global warming story.  If they really did expect a sea level rise they would not be spending billions of Renminbi on building things that were due to be swamped soon.

GM farming is creating superweeds and resistant bugs: Controversial technology has created a 'major agricultural problem'

Everything said below may be true.  Resistance to the chemicals men use to suppress disfavoured plants and organisms  has long been common.  So the issue is not what present practices do so much as what alternative practices would do. 

In the absence of GM crops much more pesticide spray would have been used.  Might that not have created MORE resistant organisms than present practices create?  It seems likely.  So use of GM crops may be no miracle but it seems likely that it is better than any alternative.  What we have below is in fact typical Leftist argumentation:  Failure to tell the whole story

Superweeds and toxin resistant pests have been created by GM farming, according to a landmark study.

New research from the American National Academies of Science reveals that many promises for the controversial technology have not been fulfilled.  Significantly, the experts concluded that the emergence of mutated weeds and pests created by GM farming is 'a major agricultural problem'.

In some cases, superweeds have taken over vast tracts of previously productive farmland in North America.

Farmers have had to resort to drastic measures, including spraying with highly toxic chemicals such as DDT and even using flamethrowers, to try and destroy them.

There is also evidence that some insect pests have developed a resistance to toxins inserted into GM crops. As a result, they survive to damage important commercial crops, such as GM cotton, which is grown in India.

GM crops were first developed more than 20 years ago on the back of promises to increase yields, cut the use of chemical sprays and boost farmers' profits.

One group of crops, such as soya and maize or corn, had genes inserted into them to make them immune to chemical weedkillers like Monsanto's Roundup or glyphosate. Farmers could then douse their crops in these chemicals, killing off the weeds but allowing the GM plants to survive.

However, many weeds, such as Palmers pigweed, which can grow seven feet tall, subsequently developed resistance to glyphosate and are difficult to control as a result.

The study said: 'In many locations some weeds had evolved resistance to glyphosate, the herbicide to which most genetically engineered crops were engineered to be resistant.'

A second group of crops, such as cotton and corn, had a toxin inserted into them – known as Bt – which would kill any pests that fed on the plants. However, pink bollworms have developed resistance to a toxin inserted into GM cotton.

The US researchers found: 'Evidence shows that in locations where insect-resistant crops were planted but resistance-management strategies were not followed, damaging levels of resistance evolved in some target insects.'

In light of these concerns, the academics concluded that strict policing regimes are needed to vet new crops and the way they are grown.


They must have sold a lot of these keyboards, it is like every Warmist is using them!

New Paper on Climate Sensitivity Supports Low (?1C) Estimates

Just a quick-fire post on climate sensitivity, because that is, after all is said and done, what all this business is about.

We keep hearing from alarmists on here and elsewhere that ‘uncertainty’ in estimates of climate sensitivity means that we cannot disregard the high end estimates generated from the GCMs, meaning, effectively, that current urgent CO2 emissions reductions are justified. This is despite the fact that empirically derived observationally based estimates are generally lower than those estimates emergent from the GCMs. Climate scientists have attempted to justify the higher estimates and downplay the lower estimates, most notably a recent attempt from Marvel, Schmidt et al—which fell flat on its face here and here.

A new paper by (fairly unusually in climate science) a single author, Prof. J. Ray Bates, on climate sensitivity has just been published:


Estimates of 2xCO2 equilibrium climate sensitivity (EqCS) derive from running global climate models (GCMs) to equilibrium. Estimates of effective climate sensitivity (EfCS) are the corresponding quantities obtained using transient GCM output or observations. The EfCS approach uses an accompanying energy balance model (EBM), the zero-dimensional model (ZDM) being standard. GCM values of EqCS and EfCS vary widely [IPCC range: (1.5, 4.5)°C] and have failed to converge over the past 35 years. Recently, attempts have been made to refine the EfCS approach by using two-zone (tropical/extratropical) EBMs. When applied using satellite radiation data, these give low and tightly-constrained EfCS values, in the neighbourhood of 1°C. These low observational EfCS/two-zone EBM values have been questioned because (a) they disagree with higher observational EfCS/ZDM values, and (b) the EfCS/two-zone EBM values given by GCMs are poorly correlated with the standard GCM sensitivity estimates. The validity of the low observational EfCS/two-zone EBM values is here explored, with focus on the limitations of the observational EfCS/ZDM approach, the disagreement between the GCM and observational radiative responses to surface temperature perturbations in the tropics, and on the modified EfCS values provided by an extended two zone EBM that includes an explicit parameterization of dynamical heat transport. The results support the low observational EfCS/two-zone EBM values, indicating that objections (a) and (b) to these values both need to be reconsidered. It is shown that in the EBM with explicit dynamical heat transport the traditional formulism of climate feedbacks can break down because of lack of additivity.

Take home message:

The central conclusion of this study is that to disregard the low values of effective climate sensitivity (?1°C) given by observations on the grounds that they do not agree with the larger values of equilibrium, or effective, climate sensitivity given by GCMs, while the GCMs themselves do not properly represent the observed value of the tropical radiative response coefficient, is a standpoint that needs to be reconsidered.

More inconvenient peer-reviewed science for those who wish to promote the idea of a global ‘climate emergency’ supposedly based upon sound science and a >90% consensus of experts. Mind you, with the way Cook’s 97% ‘consensus’ was confected, Prof. Bates would probably be included as one of those experts—even after publishing this paper!


Obama preaches his Climate Change religion

President Barack Obama told graduates at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J., “to insist upon and shape an informed debate” about climate change, adding that climate change is not subject to “political spin.”

“Climate change is not something subject to political spin. There is evidence. There are facts. We can see it happening right now,” he said in a commencement address.

Obama said the debate about climate change is “a perfect example” of astronomer Carl Sagan’s quote, “We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depths of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”

“Now, I recognize it doesn’t feel like the planet is warmer right now. I understand. There was hail when I landed in Newark, but think about the climate change issue,” he said.

“Every day, there are officials in high office with responsibilities who mock the overwhelming consensus of the world’s scientists that human activities and the release of carbon dioxide and methane and other substances are altering our climate in profound and dangerous ways,” the president said.

“A while back, you may have seen a United States senator trotted out a snowball during a floor speech in the middle of winter as ‘proof’ that the world was not warming,” Obama said, referring to Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.

“I mean, listen, climate change is not something subject to political spin. There is evidence. There are facts. We can see it happening right now. If we don’t act, if we don't follow through on the progress we made in Paris, the progress we've been making here at home, your generation will feel the brunt of this catastrophe,” Obama said.

“So it’s up to you to insist upon and shape an informed debate. Imagine if Benjamin Franklin had seen that senator with the snowball, what he would think. Imagine if your 5th grade science teacher had seen that. He’d get a D. And he’s a senator!” Obama added.

“Look, I'm not suggesting that cold analysis and hard data are ultimately more important in life than passion, or faith, or love, or loyalty,” he said. “I am suggesting that those highest expressions of our humanity can only flourish when our economy functions well, and proposed budgets add up, and our environment is protected.

“And to accomplish those things, to make collective decisions on behalf of a common good, we have to use our heads. We have to agree that facts and evidence matter, and we got to hold our leaders and ourselves accountable to know what the heck they’re talking about,” Obama said.


Failure to tackle food demand could make 1.5C limit unachievable

The ecofascists go even further than Hitler and Stalin. They  want to choose your breakfast, lunch and dinner for you.  For your own benefit, of course.  Some amusing gloom below, though

In Paris in December last year, 195 countries agreed to try and keep global temperature rise to “well below” 2C above pre-industrial levels, and to “pursue efforts” towards 1.5C.

Many had expected the 1.5C temperature goal to drop out of the draft text during the fortnight of negotiations. Now, as the dust settles after the landmark agreement, scientists are grappling with the feasibility of meeting this more ambitious target.

But there was one sector that was largely absent from the talks in Paris. It’s something that we rely on everyday, and continuing to ignore it could mean waving goodbye to that 1.5C goal. It’s food.

30% of emissions

Agriculture and the production of food, or “agri-food” for short, is a very significant emitter of greenhouse gases.

Producing our three square meals a day causes emissions of CO2 through agricultural machinery and transporting crops and animals, nitrous oxide from the use of fertilisers (synthetic and manure), and methane from livestock and flooded paddy fields for rice.

Furthermore, the demand for food has led to global expansion of farmland at a rate of about 10m hectares per year during the last decade. Some of this cleared land is – or was – tropical rainforest, adding more emissions and reducing the capacity of land to absorb and store carbon.

When you consider emissions according to the services we use on a day-to-day basis, agri-food accounts for approximately 30% of all greenhouse gas emissions. As you can see from the chart below, that means producing and cooking the food we eat causes approximately the same amount of emissions as those from personal travel, lighting, heating and air conditioning, and washing machines put together.

Rising demand and emissions

During the mid-20th century, global food production benefitted from a “Green Revolution”, where improvements in farming technology across the world gave a huge boost to crop yields. But, more recently, there has been a worldwide deceleration in yield growth of major crops.

At the same time, as the world’s population grows and becomes richer, the demand for food is expected to increase by 60% or more by 2050. Given recent trends, demand is likely to rise more quickly than supply towards the middle of the 21st century. This will increase pressure to convert land for farming.

Putting these drivers together suggests that emissions from agri-food will continue to grow. Changing farming practises could offset some of this increase, but achieving such changes is easier said than done.

A paper published this week, for example, reviews the various ways we can cut emissions from raising livestock. Options include using feed additives to reduce how much methane is created in the stomachs of animals, and sequestering carbon in the soils of grasslands where they graze. But limited take-up of new farming methods and high costs means that less than 10% of what is technically possible is currently economically viable.

So what does this mean for keeping temperature rise below 1.5C?

The emissions pathway we’d need to follow for a 66% chance of staying within 1.5C suggests that food-related emissions at current levels would take up our entire greenhouse gas budget in 2050.

That means unless things change – radically – our demand for food could leave no space for emissions from any of the other services we require to live our daily lives.

In short, our demand for food alone could virtually guarantee that the Paris aspirations are unachievable.


Colorado Supreme Court embraces the rule of law, not the fear mongering of the anti-fossil-fuel movement

On Monday, May 2 the Colorado Supreme Court ruled on what the New York Times (NYT) called: “a lengthy battle for energy production.” The court’s unanimous decision to strike down two cities’ limits on fracking is a victory for oil-and-gas companies and a “disappointment” to anti-fossil-fuel activists. Several states, including Colorado’s neighbors, New Mexico and Texas, have faced similar anti-oil-and-gas initiatives that have also been shot down.

The Colorado Supreme Court reached the same conclusion as the lower court: the fracking bans put in place by Fort Collins and Longmont are “invalid and unenforceable” because state law trumps the local ordinances. A report from Colorado Public Radio states: “The ruling will have an impact on other Front Range communities — including Broomfield, Lafayette, and Boulder — that have approved restrictions on fracking. The court clearly said that these efforts are illegal.”

The consequences of the decision are “comparatively small,” according to NYT, as the land now opened up for exploration represents only a fraction of Colorado’s oil-and-gas development. “More significant, said experts on both sides of the conflict, is that the rulings shut down future efforts to stop fracking in local jurisdictions.” Colorado Attorney General Cynthia Coffman said that she fears the ruling will not end the divisive debate. “Instead some activists will continue to push anti-development initiatives undermining the state’s record of local cooperation on these policy issues.”

The NYT points out: “Spurred by the rise of hydraulic fracturing, Colorado has become one of the nation’s largest producers of oil and gas. The state has more than 50,000 active oil and gas wells.”

According to a press release, the Colorado Petroleum Council “welcomed the decisions for upholding the state’s primacy in overseeing oil and natural gas permitting and curtailing ‘arbitrary bans’ on fracking that could cost local jobs, deprive state and local governments of tax revenue and limit access to energy resources.”

Upon hearing the news, I tweeted: “Great news! Colorado Supreme Court Strikes Down Local Fracking Bans.” Almost immediately, @AllNewSux responded: “@energyrabbit Hooray…now we can all drink poisoned water here in Colorado!”

What is @AllNewSux thinking? He is regurgitating outdated propaganda as study after study — though funders are disappointed with the results — determine, as did the three-year study by the University of Cincinnati released in February: “hydraulic fracturing of oil and gas wells … does not contaminate ground water.”

The University of Cincinnati study, reports the Free Press Standard: “aimed to measure methane and its sources in groundwater before, during and after the onset of fracking.” It concluded, “dissolved methane was detected in all sampled wells, however, no relationship was found between the methane concentration and proximity to natural gas wells.” The results of the study were released by Dr. Amy Townsend-Small, the lead researcher, during a February 4 meeting of the Carroll County Concerned Citizens in Carrollton, Ohio — part of a coalition of anti-fracking groups. Townsend-Small stated: “We haven’t seen anything to show that wells have been contaminated by fracking.” Her revelations must have been a shock to the group whose pre-meeting promotion included this comment: “We saw the debate about fracking’s impact on groundwater methane in Pennsylvania and the results of failing to have predrilling or baseline data for comparisons. Dr. Townsend-Small’s study provides landowners with that baseline data and helps to differentiate shale sources from non-shale sources of methane.”

The Free Press Standard asked Townsend-Small about plans to “publicize the results.” She said there were “no plans to do so.” Why? “I am really sad to say this, but some of our funders, the groups that had given us funding in the past, were a little disappointed in our results. They feel that fracking is scary and so they were hoping this data could lead to a reason to ban it.”

Just a few months earlier, October 2015, a Yale study, reported in Nature World News, came to the same conclusion: “Fracking does not contaminate drinking water.” The article, which ties in an earlier EPA report, states: “Yale researchers have confirmed that hydraulic fracturing — also known as ‘fracking’ — does not contaminate drinking water. The process of extracting natural gas from deep underground wells using water has been given a bad reputation when it comes to the impact it has on water resources but Yale researchers recently disproved this myth in a new study that confirms a previous report by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) conducted earlier this year.”

Then there is the 2014 research from Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment that found: “(The) gas data appear to rule out gas contamination by upward migration from depth through overlying geological strata triggered by horizontal drilling or hydraulic fracturing.” Addressing the study, Hoppy Kercheval, in the West Virginia MetroNews, said: “Fracking opponents should be held accountable as well, and this new research illustrates some of their alarmist proclamations are just wrong.”

In 2013, the “highlights” of a study on the Fayetteville Shale in north-central Arkansas announced: “No relationship between methane and salinity in groundwater and shale-gas wells.”

A year earlier, an EPA study that sampled well water at 61 homes in the famed Dimock, PA area, and “found health concerns in only five of them.” According to the Washington Times, “drilling is not the root of the problems in Dimock” as “the substances found include arsenic, barium and manganese, all of which are naturally occurring.”

The aforementioned studies don’t include myriad comments from public officials stating the same thing.

Perhaps, this preponderance of evidence is what caused so-called expert Anthony Ingraffea to base his recent testimony at the federal trial regarding whether Cabot Oil & Gas was a “nuisance to two families” on “speculation.” In its coverage of the “sparsely attended” February 2016 trial, points out: the plaintiffs were “unable to establish that chemicals from hydraulic fracturing got into their water, or that the drilling caused illness.” Coverage at the conclusion of the trial added: the plaintiffs “maintained that the methane contamination disrupted their lives and deprived them of the enjoyment of their property.”

During the trial, the plaintiff’s expert witnesses, both known anti-drilling activists, each acknowledged that they had no direct proof of claims they were there to support. Under cross-examination, hydrogeologist Paul Rubin admitted that he had not identified a specific pathway from any of Cabot’s natural gas wells to the plaintiff’s water supply. Regarding his “theory” about causation of the plaintiff’s allegedly impacted water, Ingraffea, was asked: “In fact, you’re going to tell me I think or I’ll ask you that’s speculation on your part, it is not?” He responded: “You can call it that, sure.” The questioning continued: “You don’t have any direct proof of that, right?” Ingraffea agreed that he didn’t have direct proof and said his theory was “most likely” the cause.

Additionally, the trial discovered that the plaintiff’s water troubles actually began months before Cabot began drilling nearby. The judge repeatedly called out the plaintiff’s attorney for going “over the line.” U.S. Magistrate Judge Martin C. Carlson dismissed the property damage claim against Cabot, because as reports: “the plaintiffs introduced no evidence that their property values had been affected.” Additionally, one of the plaintiffs, Scott Ely, “spent $700,000 to build his 7,000-square-foot home — after the water went bad.” Carlson, however, ruled that the plaintiffs had “elicited enough evidence that Cabot had been a nuisance.” A jury awarded $4.24 million to the two families based on nuisance.

Anti-fracking activists, like @AllNewSux, likely point to the award (which is being appealed) and see it as proof that fracking contaminates ground water. Though, a careful read reveals that no such evidence was found — only the “most likely,” theory, and speculation common among anti-fossil fuel claims.

One has to wonder how many more studies and court cases have to be carried out before the fear mongering and activist community finally stop wasting public money to kill jobs and raise energy costs.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


18 May, 2016

The bugs that COOL the planet: Tiny bacteria could be the Earth's greatest defence against climate change

Is this included in the models?  Guess not.  Note that the theory below is the exact opposite of orthodox Warmism.  Warmists cling to the theory that more clouds will WARM the earth.  The thinking below says that they will COOL the earth.  Is that the "settled science" we hear about? Most evidence suggests cooling

Humankind's battle against climate change is being helped by an organism which too small to be seen by the naked eye, yet which exists in unimaginable numbers in the oceans.

The bacterial group Pelagibacterale could be the most abundant creature on the planet, accounting for about a third of all cells on the ocean surface. As many as half a million exist in every teaspoon of sea water.

Scientists have now discovered that this tiny bacterium is one of Earth's greatest defences against climate change.

The bug plays a key role in a reverse-feedback loop that creates more clouds as the climate warms, helping to shade the planet from the sun's energy.

As the climate warms, Pelagibacterale grow rapidly. The bacteria produce the chemical dimethylsulfide (DMS) which, through a series of chemical processes, increases cloud droplets.

The resulting clouds are both more abundant and a whiter colour, which reduces the amount of sunlight hitting the ocean surface and lowering temperatures.

Dr Ben Temperton, lecturer in biosciences at the University of Exeter, was a member of the international team that has for the first time identified Pelagibacterales as a major source of DMS.

'This shows that the Pelagibacterales are an important component in climate stability.

'If we are going to improve models of how DMS impacts climate, we need to consider this organism as a major contributor.'

Pelagibacterales have some of the smallest genomes of all free-living organisms, and small genomes take fewer resources to replicate. This allows the bacteria to multiply rapidly when conditions are right.

'The production of DMS is like a pressure release valve', says Dr Temperton. 'Kinetic regulation like this is not uncommon in bacteria, but this is the first time we've seen it in play for such an important biogeochemical process.'


The CLAW hypothesis explains how a reverse-feedback system helps to regulate the Earth's climate.

Warmer temperatures allow micro-organisms to thrive, producing dimethylsulfide (DMS) gas which leads to more cloud cover.

These clouds reflect sunlight back into space, slowing temperature increases on the planet.

CLAW is named from the initial letters of the scientists who proposed it: Robert Charlson, James Lovelock, Meinrat Andreae, and Stephen Warren.

Lovelock is best known for his Gaia hypothesis, which sees the planet Earth as a vast self-regulating organism.

The Gaia notion was put forward over 40 years ago, and is sometimes criticised for being a quasi-religious contradiction of the principles of natural selection.


Today’s Climate Fraudster Of The Day – Andrew Freedman

More accurate satellite temperatures show that April 1998 was warmer, and this April was just another El Nino spike – which will quickly disappear. April temperatures have generally been declining over the past 18 years. Why did Andrew forget to mention that?


Rules, Rules and More Rules to Combat Climate Change

EPA head Gina McCarthy announced first-ever standards to reduce the amount of methane the oil and gas industry releases into the air. The announcement this week was days away from a supposed mid-May deadline to pass rules for the Obama administration, one last-ditch attempt to slow the economy down.

The rules are yet another push by the Obama administration to further cement its climate change fighting chops — in other words, expand federal control. In her announcement, McCarthy claimed the rules are supposedly to help make the oil and gas industries safer, but that’s a transparent attempt to make the regs easier to stomach.

Kyle Isakower, a vice president of policy at the American Petroleum Institute, said, “The industry is already leading the way on methane reductions, because it is good for the environment and good for business. Imposing a one-size-fits-all scheme on the industry could actually stifle innovation and discourage investments in new technologies that could serve to further reduce emissions.”

But Obama is living out the twilight of his time in the White House, so what’s he got to lose?

Speaking of losing, this new rule came out on the day ObamaCare lost a big court battle. Lose one battle, begin another one, Obama says. Toss down a pile of regulation and let the bureaucrats in Washington sort it out. Maybe some of it will survive challenges in court. It’s a terribly cynical way of “fundamentally transforming America.”

Speaking of energy, the Senate passed its first normal appropriations bill since 2009 — funding energy and water development. But it’s not a conservative bill. Being generous, the Senate gave $261 million more than what the Obama administration asked. Hello, fiscal conservatism?


Stick It, Mike

It doesn't take much to annoy the "Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Studies" as Micheal Mann refers to himself. I mentioned him and his dubious hockey stick graph in only one paragraph of my column published two weeks ago, but Mann responded angrily in a long letter to the editor in The Conway Daily Sun, one of the papers in which it ran.

Mann might be realizing the thin ice he's standing on has nothing to do with global warming. It's cracking under his feet because scientists are not coming forth to assist him with amicus briefs in the court case he brought against Mark Steyn. Mann accused Steyn of  "defamation of a Nobel prize recipient," which Mann falsely claimed he was.

He had to modify that wording when the Nobel Committee declared he never received one. Mann is learning that Steyn, when he refused to withdraw his charge that Mann's graph was a fraud, wants his day in court. I think he also realizes that Steyn will take him apart.

When I first saw the hockey stick graph, it took me less than a minute to know it was BS. Picture a hockey stick laying horizontally with the blade sticking up in the air to your right. The "shaft" of Mann's hockey stick purports to show a fairly stable temperature for 900 years - until the 20th century when the "blade" shot up, ostensibly because of fossil fuels burned by expanding industries beginning in 1900.

Though I took a course in meteorology and climatology in college, I do not claim to be an expert. History is my subject.

As a boy I was fascinated by stories of pre-Columbian discoveries of North America. I was ten in 1961 when I learned about Norwegian archaeologist Helge Ingstad's discovery of the Viking settlement at Newfoundland's L'Anse Au Meadows. Viking voyages to North America had been described in Icelandic Sagas from the period of 1000 AD during what is now called the "medieval warming period."

Back then, historians called it "the little climate optimum." In the sagas, Viking voyagers described shorelines of today's Canadian maritime provinces that didn't make sense until researchers realized that ocean levels were higher when the Vikings sailed by them a thousand years ago due to melting of the ice caps. The shaft of Mann's hockey stick graph ignores all this. By showing a straight line where he should show a significant bump, Mann totally ignored the medieval warming period.

I also knew the Viking Greenland settlement was abandoned when the climate turned cold during the "Little Ice Age" a few centuries later, but this centuries-long period isn't depicted in the straight shaft of Mann's ridiculous hockey stick either. Those two anomalies were all I needed to understand that the "distinguished professor" of atmospheric studies was peddling academic and scientific BS.

Seldom do I respond to letters to the editor. An editor advised me twenty years ago to trust my readers. "They've read what you wrote and they've read the responses. Trust them to make up their own minds." It was good advice, and I've followed it closely ever since. The only exception I've made is when the facts I offered are questioned. Then, as now, I'll respond with evidence. Also, I'll admit, Mann's hubris is too rich to ignore.

On Twitter, Mann claimed he "disabused" me as a denier. The word means to "persuade someone that a belief or idea is mistaken," and the purpose of this column is to disabuse readers of that tweet that I'm persuaded of any such thing.

Anthropogenic climate change has been invented by the left. They hope that by propagating that narrative, they can justify taking over what Vladimir Lenin referred to as "The Commanding Heights" of the economy, which they have proceeded to do under the Obama Administration.

While climate certainly affects humans, the evidence for humans affecting climate is thin or none no matter what the "distinguished professor" may claim. Mann's hockey stick graph is all about political propaganda, not science.

Mann and his devoted followers seem to exemplify what the 18th century British scientist Joseph Priestly wrote: "A philosopher who has long been attached to his favorite hypothesis, and especially if he have (sic) distinguished himself by his ingenuity in discovering or pursuing it, will not, sometimes, be convinced of its falsity by the plainest evidence of fact. Thus, both himself and his followers are put upon false pursuits and seem determined to warp the whole course of nature to suit their manner of conceiving its operations."

My hope is to watch the trial during which I expect Mark Steyn to make a fool of him and his hockey stick, and thereby render him forever the extinguished professor of atmospheric studies.


52 climate activists arrested in Wash. railroad protest

SEATTLE — Authorities cleared the railroad tracks of protesters and arrested 52 climate activists Sunday morning in Washington state after a two-day shutdown.

About 150 people spent the night in tents and sleeping bags on the tracks near two refineries in northwest Washington, according to BNSF Railway spokesman Gus Melonas.

They were asked to leave at about 5 a.m. and most gathered their belongings and left the area near Anacortes, Melonas said. "It was peaceful," he said. "Eighty percent removed their belongings and cleared out."

The 52 people arrested were cited for trespassing, according to the Skagit County Department of Emergency Management. One person was also cited for resisting arrest.

Skagit County Sheriff Will Reichardt said that before anyone was arrested, officers advised protesters that they could move to another designated location and demonstrate.

A spokeswoman for the protesters said she expected everyone arrested would be processed and released.

Emily Johnston said protests would continue around Anacortes on Sunday, but she didn’t expect people to return to the railroad tracks.

Johnston, who had participated in a blockade of the Seattle harbor to protest Shell Oil’s plans to drill for oil in the Arctic, said the success of protests like the one in Anacortes can mostly be seen in the way they inspire people to speak out about climate change.  "People power matters," Johnston said.

She also spoke about the contrast between arresting people for protesting about saving the planet and the lack of government action against the fossil fuel industry.

"We really need to hold the fossil fuel industry accountable," Johnston said.

The rail line has been closed since Friday because of the protests, and trains will begin running again Sunday afternoon after a cleanup and safety sweep of the tracks, he said.

Protesters in kayaks, canoes, on bikes, and on foot also took part in demonstrations near Anacortes, about 70 miles north of Seattle, to demand action on climate and an equitable transition away from fossil fuels such as oil and coal.

Hundreds marched to the refineries Saturday and a smaller group blocked the railroad, all demanding energy policy changes. The railroad had rerouted rail traffic to avoid the area.

The railroad spur provides transportation for the nearby Shell and Tesoro oil refineries, as well as animal feed and other products.

The protests are part of a series of global actions calling on people to "break free" from dependence on fossil fuels. Similar demonstrations were held around the country during the weekend.

In upstate New York, climate activists gathered Saturday at a crude-oil shipment hub on the Hudson River in an action targeting crude-by-rail trains and oil barges at the Port of Albany.

A group of activists sat on tracks used by crude oil trains headed to the port. Albany is a key hub for crude-by-rail shipments from North Dakota’s Bakken Shale region.

Other events were held during the weekend in Los Angeles, Chicago, and Thornton, Colo., as well as in Germany, Turkey, New Zealand, Brazil, and Nigeria.

In the New York protest, about 40 activists from several Northeast groups attempted to line up across the river in kayaks Friday to practice blocking oil barges, but police and Coast Guard boats herded them into a cluster that paddled past a riverfront park where a banner saying "Water not oil" was hung.

Police blocked access to a railroad bridge over the river where activists had planned to unfurl banners. Another group on Saturday sat on tracks used by crude oil trains headed to the port.

For three years, residents of a low-income housing project beside the oil train route have been fighting expanded crude oil shipments at the port by Global Partners, a fuel transport firm based in Waltham, Mass.

"We have to stop these explosive bomb trains from rolling through our communities across the continent," Marla Marcum, a member of the Climate Disobedience Center in Arlington, Mass., said on Friday. "We have to keep fossil fuels in the ground and bring the focus to renewables."

Mark Romaine, chief operating officer of Global Partners, said Friday the company is committed to safety and has been inspected more than 270 times in the last three years with only a handful of minor infractions that were promptly corrected.

"It’s clear we take our jobs and our responsibility to the community, to safety, and the environment very seriously," Romaine said.

The organizers of the Washington state demonstration targeted two refineries that are among the top sources of greenhouse gas emissions in the state. Tesoro has started shipping Bakken crude oil to its refinery, and Shell is proposing an expansion project that would similarly bring in Bakken crude oil by train.

Officials with Shell and Tesoro said they respect the right of people to demonstrate peacefully, and that safety is their highest priority.

Crowd estimates of Saturday’s march ranged from several hundred to about 1,000 people, Skagit County spokeswoman Bronlea Mishler said.

Bud Ullman, 67, who lives on Guemes Island, participated in the march, which he described as good-spirited, peaceful.

"The scientists are right. We have to get away from our dependence on fossil fuels, and it has to be done in a way that takes into serious consideration the impact on workers, families, and communities," he said.

Many of the groups that organized the event also participated in large on-water kayak protests against Shell’s Arctic oil drilling rig when it parked last year at a Seattle port.


New England Greenies find they can't have their cake and eat it too

They shut down a nuclear plant so now have to turn to power generated by hydrocarbon fuels.  So their CO2 output is INCREASING!  Horror!

For the first time in five years, power plants across New England are producing more carbon emissions, dealing a setback to Massachusetts’ legally mandated efforts to reduce greenhouse gases and raising concerns that reduced production of nuclear energy will undercut environmental gains.

Last year, the region’s power plants released 5 percent more carbon dioxide than the year before, the first year-to-year increase since 2010, according to ISO New England, an independent company in Holyoke that operates the region’s power grid.

The uptick comes as Massachusetts works to curb carbon emissions in nearly every sector of its economy, in hopes of reaching its 2020 targets.

Massachusetts is legally required to reduce greenhouse gases 25 percent below 1990 levels by that date — part of a national effort to stave off global warming.

“We need this part of the puzzle to continue to fall precipitously in order to have a chance of meeting the 2020 goal,” said Ian Bowles, who served as energy and environmental affairs secretary during the Patrick administration and now helps finance renewable energy projects. “We need steep, sustained declines in emissions here, and not a step back.”

State officials acknowledge the need for greater reform, and have urged lawmakers to pass legislation that would substantially increase the amount of hydroelectric power that is fed into the region’s grid.

“Action is needed on existing policies . . . to further diversify our energy portfolio and meet the goals set forth in the Global Warming Solutions Act,” said Katie Gronendyke, a spokeswoman for the state’s Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. “The administration continues to work toward our state’s emission reduction goals.”

The cold winter of 2015 may have contributed to the state’s unexpected rise in carbon emissions by increasing the use of electric heaters — which run on power produced by plants that, in turn, contribute to carbon emissions.

But the bigger factor was probably the 2014 closing of the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant, specialists said.

Nuclear power is largely carbon-neutral, and the loss of Vermont Yankee spurred the need for replacement energy, resulting in a 13 percent increase in the use of natural gas-generated electricity.

Such plants last year provided about half of the region’s electricity, according to ISO New England.

While natural gas is thought of as a clean energy source that produces fewer greenhouse gases than coal or oil, burning it still releases substantial amounts of carbon dioxide and methane into the atmosphere.

A second nuclear plant, the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth, is scheduled to close in 2019; that will again cost the state a carbon-neutral source of electricity.

Overall, carbon emissions in New England have declined by about 25 percent in the past 15 years, and state officials released a report in January that suggested Massachusetts was still on course to meet its climate goals, set forth in a 2008 law that created a framework for reducing heat-trapping emissions.

But the report acknowledged that a significant amount of projected emissions declines depend on the expansion of cleaner energy sources.

Over the next few weeks, lawmakers will debate whether to compel utilities to enter into long-term contracts to buy hydroelectric power from Canada, or other renewable energy from outside of Massachusetts.

For much of the past decade, power plants contributed about 22 percent of the region’s carbon emissions, substantially less than cars and other forms of transportation, which emit more than 40 percent.

Most of the rest comes from homes, businesses, and industrial sources.

While not the largest source of greenhouse gases, the power sector offers the best opportunity to make drastic reductions, officials and advocates say.

“The electricity sector is by far the lowest-hanging fruit,” said Ken Kimmell, who served as commissioner of the state’s Department of Environmental Protection during the Patrick administration. “We need to make disproportionately large cuts there to meet our overall goals.”

Kimmell, now president of the Union of Concerned Scientists, said the region will have to make fundamental changes in its electricity production to reduce its carbon footprint, especially as more residents drive electric vehicles.

“We need to be supplying that electricity through renewable energy,” Kimmell said.

In the state’s January report, officials estimated that nearly 17 percent of required emissions cuts would come from hydropower, or other clean energy imports.

An additional 23 percent would come from increased energy efficiency, and nearly 16 percent would come from new fuel-economy standards.

But environmental advocates have raised doubts that the state can reach the 2020 target thresholds.

In January, lawyers for the Conservation Law Foundation, an environmental advocacy organization based in Boston, argued before the state’s top court that the Baker and Patrick administrations had violated the law by failing to enact the policies necessary to meet the mandated levels.

Advocates have insisted that the state has fallen behind and needs a major course correction — well beyond action on the hydro plan — to meet the law’s requirements.

Even if lawmakers pass a hydroelectric bill, the expensive power lines might never get built, they say.

Some would be likely to pass through New Hampshire, where the proposal remains highly controversial, and others would require an expensive extension into Vermont.

In 2014, before Pilgrim’s owners announced that it would be closed, a collaborative effort by local environmental groups called the Global Warming Solutions Project projected that Massachusetts was on pace to reduce emissions by 20 percent below 1990 levels, well short of the goal.

A more recent report by the Conservation Law Foundation, which factors in the closing of Pilgrim, estimated that the state is more likely to cut its emissions between 16 and 19 percent without major policy changes.

That begins with becoming less reliant on natural gas, environmental advocates say — even though it is cleaner than oil and coal.

“We are over-dependent on natural gas for power in New England,” said Caitlin Peale Sloan, a staff attorney at the Conservation Law Foundation. “Natural gas is no longer a part of the solution in the fight against carbon emissions in New England, but part of the problem.”

Jack Clarke, the director of public policy at Mass Audubon, said the state is running out of time.

“Going backward is a major concern,” he said.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


17 May, 2016

Do Warmists actually think?  Mismatch between CO2 and temperature changes

It sometimes seems not.  This post is a reaction to the generally correct statement in the excerpt below to the effect that CO2 levels have been rising steadily for a long time now.  The problem is the second statement: That increased CO2 levels cause warming.  In combination, those two statements are inconsistent with the evidence.  In particular, warming levels behave quite differently from CO2 levels.  The two are simply not correlated.  They don't covary. And without correlation there is no causation. 

For instance, CO2 levels DID rise steadily in C21 but temperatures did not.  It was only in 2015 under the influence of El Nino that temperatures rose.  And as luck would have it, that was precisely the one year in which CO2 levels stagnated.   2015 CO2 levels at Mauna Loa just fluctuated up and down from month to month around the 400ppm mark. 

The 4th column is the actual average CO2 level in ppm.
So at no point in C21 did temperatures and CO2 levels rise at the same time.  They were two independent phenomena.

The figures from Cape Grim showed more change but from August on the CO2 level was stuck on 398 ppm.  And late 2015 was precisely the time when El Nino was most influential and the temperature rise was greatest.  Putting it another way, any warming from August on (inclusive) was NOT an effect of a CO2 rise  -- because there was no CO2 rise.  That rather knocks out most of the warming in 2015 as due to CO2.  So again, temperature and CO2 did not mirror one another.

The Warmists below just don't see that a steady CO2 rise accompanied by no temperature rise is a problem.  They are robotic propagandists not scientists

Within the next couple of weeks, a remote part of north-western Tasmania is likely to grab headlines around the world as a major climate change marker is passed.

The aptly named Cape Grim monitoring site jointly run by CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology will witness the first baseline reading of 400 parts per million (ppm) of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, researchers predict.

"Once it's over [400 ppm], it won't go back," said Paul Fraser, dubbed by CSIRO as the Air Man of Cape Grim, and now a retired CSIRO fellow. "It could be within 10 days."

The most recent reading on May 6 was 399.9 ppm, according to readings compiled by the CSIRO team led by Paul Krummel that strip out influences from land, including cities such as Melbourne to the north

Mark Butler, Labor's shadow environment minister, said the Cape Grim landmark reading was "deeply concerning".  "While the Coalition fights about whether or not the science of climate change is real, pollution is rising. And it's rising on their watch," Mr Butler said.

Cape Grim's readings are significant because they capture the most accurate reading of the atmospheric conditions in the southern hemisphere and have records going back 40 years.
With less land in the south, there is also a much smaller fluctuation according to the seasonal cycle than in northern hemisphere sites. That's because the north has more trees and other vegetation, which take up carbon from the atmosphere in the spring and give it back in the autumn.

So while 400 ppm has been temporarily exceeded at the other two main global stations since 2013 - in Hawaii and Alaska - they have dropped back below that level once spring has arrived because of that greater seasonal variation.

David Etheridge, a CSIRO principal research scientist, said atmospheric CO2 levels had fluctuated around 280 ppm until humans' burning of fossil fuels and clearing of forests set in process rising levels of greenhouse gases almost without pause since about 1800.

"It's been upwards pretty much all of the time," Dr Etheridge told Fairfax Media. "This is a significant change, and it's the primary greenhouse gas which is leading to the warming of the atmosphere."


Ben Rhodes spins climate change

“Climate refugee” claims reflect deliberate mendacity and belief that we and reporters are stupid

Paul Driessen

Employing his college degree in fiction writing, White House communications strategist Ben Rhodes wrote deceitful talking points on the Benghazi attack and one-sided Iran nuclear deal – and later bragged about manipulating “clueless reporters.” Perhaps he’s also orchestrating administration climate spin.

Rising ocean tides will bring “waves of climate refugees” to America and Europe, President Obama has declared. “Environmental migrants” are already fleeing shrinking islands in the Pacific, and it is a “dereliction of duty” for military officers to “deny the reality” of dangerous manmade climate change.

Even if we act in accord with the Paris climate “accords” (none dare call it a treaty) and “can stem the increase” in global temperatures, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell insists, “very rapid” climate changes “are expected to force the relocation of hundreds of Alaskans from their homes.”

Manmade climate change is a “threat multiplier,” a Pentagon report asserts. It will “exacerbate” many of the challenges the United States faces today, including infectious diseases and terrorism, destructive extreme weather events, disputes over who has rights to dwindling land areas and basic resources like water and food, and intense disagreements over how to absorb millions of climate refugees.

Echo-chamber journalists disagree only over the identity of America’s first climate refugees: Alaskan Natives in Newtok being inundated by rising seas and melting ice and tundra – or 25 Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw families whose little island in the Mississippi Delta has been eroding away since 1950?

Not to be outdone, ultra-liberal radio talk show host Thom Hartmann told me, “You’ve got five million climate change refugees fleeing into Europe right now because of droughts in Syria.” When I called this nonsense and said they are trying to escape war and ISIS butchers who are beheading little children, for the tenth time in a ten-minute interview, he railed that I “should be in jail” as a “climate denier.”

Unfortunately for Rhodes & Company, inconvenient truths eviscerate manmade climate chaos claims.

Throughout Earth and human history, climate change has ranged from regional to hemispheric, from beneficial to harmful to destructive. It has included Roman and medieval warm periods, little ice ages, and five “mammoth” glacial epochs that buried continents under mile-high walls of ice. Natural climate change inflicted a Dust Bowl that sent millions of Americans scurrying in search of better lives, and decades- or centuries-long droughts that brought entire civilizations to their knees.

Roman, Mayan, Mesopotamian, Egyptian, Chinese and other cities and cultures prospered in warm periods and collapsed in cold and drought eras, climate historian Dennis Avery observes. This happened “over and over, in a centuries-long rhythm of affluence followed by long success, followed by long and utter failure.” Entire cities in the eastern Mediterranean were abandoned for centuries.

Storm activity rose by 85% in the second half of the 16th century, during the Maunder Sunspot Minimum, while the incidence of severe storms increased four-fold, writes historian Brian Fagan. British Navy logbooks show more than twice as many major land-falling Caribbean hurricanes during the cold decades of the 1700’s as during the warm years of 1950–2000.

Little ice ages and extended droughts brought crop failures and mass starvation, Avery notes. Rome shrank from a million inhabitants in its heyday to barely 30,000 a century later. The Mayan civilization plunged from perhaps 15 million to one million, as its cities were abandoned in a century-long drought.

Climate mood swings in the past 50 years have been far less dramatic than in previous millennia. Few people will have to flee the tiny portion of future climate change that might be attributable to humans.

The Climate Crisis Consortium ignores these eons, millennia and centuries of natural climate change. It wants us to believe Earth’s climate was stable and benign until the Industrial Age – and humans can now control climate and weather merely by controlling carbon dioxide levels. It’s all Hollywood nonsense.

Oceans have risen 400 feet since the last ice age glaciers melted. Pacific islands rose with them, as corals expanded their habitats with every new inch of sea water. Seas are now rising at seven inches per century – and EPA’s anti-coal Clean Power Plan would prevent barely 0.01 inches of rise over the next 100 years.

Greenland’s icecap is shrinking because of subterranean magmatic activity – not global warming. Arctic regions have long experienced warming and cooling cycles, as recorded by Francis McClintock and other whalers and explorers, dating back some 300 years. Polar bear populations are at an all-time high: 25,000.

Antarctic ice masses continue to grow, and the continent’s average annual temperature of minus-55 F means it would have to warm by 88 degrees year-round for that ice to melt. Even Al Gore in his wildest rants doesn’t say that is likely. So his beachfront home is safe from the 20-foot sea rise he has predicted.

Meteorologist Anthony Watts concludes that the only reliable long-term surface record comes from 400 official US rural thermometer stations that were never corrupted by location changes, airport heat or urban growth. Those stations show no significant warming for the past 80 years. The “record warming” we keep hearing about comes from data that have been “adjusted” or “homogenized” (ie, manipulated) upward to conform to computer model projections, IPCC proclamations and White House press releases.

Other studies have concluded there has been no increase in the severity or frequency of thunderstorms, tornadoes, hurricanes or winter blizzards for decades. Indeed, no Category 3-5 hurricane has struck the United States since October 2005 – a record lull that exceeds any hurricane hiatus since at least 1900.

Malaria was common in the USA, Europe and even Siberia until the 1950s, when window screens, DDT and better medical practices wiped it out. It has nothing to do with global warming or climate change. Its continued prevalence is due to incompetent health ministries that refuse to learn from past successes.

The notion that a warmer world with more atmospheric CO2 will bring crop failures and famines is sheer delusion. Higher carbon dioxide levels are actually “greening” the planet and making crops, forests and grasslands grow faster and better. New hybrid and biotech seeds, combined with modern fertilizers and farming practices, are yielding bigger harvests, even during droughts, as India is proving right now.

There is no manmade climate crisis. Solar, galactic and oceanic cycles rule – not carbon dioxide. The biggest threat to agriculture and humans would come from another little ice age, not moderate warming.

In reality, the enormous amounts of energy packed into coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear fuels create the wealth, and power the wondrous technologies, that give us the greatest advantages mankind has ever enjoyed – to survive, adapt to and deal with climate changes and weather events.

The worst thing we could do is lock up that reliable, affordable, compact energy – and switch to expensive, heavily subsidized, wildly unpredictable wind and solar energy … and to biofuels that require millions of acres of land and billions of gallons of precious water.

Those who control energy control lives, livelihoods and living standards. Allowing climate alarmists and anti-energy zealots to dictate what energy sources we can use, and how much each of us is “permitted” to have, would put all of us at the mercy of their unaccountable whims, ideologies and fraudulent science.

Their callous policies are already killing millions of people every year in impoverished nations, by depriving them of the energy and technologies that we take for granted. Do we really want to be next? Shouldn’t we be helping the world’s poor take their rightful places among the healthy and prosperous?

The only “evidence” the alarmists have for a looming climate cataclysm are Al Gore movies, Mike Mann hockey sticks, computer “scenarios” that bear no resemblance to Real World events, and more spin and scare stories from White House novelist Ben Rhodes.

We need a president who will send the Paris climate treaty to the US Senate, where it can be properly vetted and rejected … overturn EPA and other regulations that are based on manipulated data and falsified pseudo-science … and lead the world back from the precipice of climate lunacy.

Via email


Climate Scientist: Heat From Global Warming Won’t Trigger Refugee Crisis

A new study claiming temperature increases will drive “500 million people” out of the Middle East and North Africa has already drawn the ire of a few scientists.

The study, published Monday in the journal Climatic Change, predicts that global warming would drastically change the regions’ enviroment, causing huge heatwaves. These temperature increases would force a population of 500 million to migrate to other areas, causing considerable political instability. The study indicated that a mass migration would occur even if the world manages to meet President Barack Obama’s goal of limiting global warming to 2.0° Celsius.

On the other hand, rising temperatures from global warming could likely only cause minor changes in behavior, a dissenting climate scientist told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

Chip Knappenberger, a climate scientist at the libertarian Cato Institute, thinks rising temperatures will cause people to change their behavior, not cause mass migration. Knappenberger previously authored scientific research, published in the scientific journal Nature, saying increasing numbers of heat waves causes people to adapt their behavior to the changing conditions, ultimately leading to fewer deaths and little migration.

“Too often, stories of projected larges-scale negative outcomes from global warming run contrary to known and reasonable anticipated responses. This seems to be another such instance,” Knappenberger told The Daily Caller News Foundation.”When it comes to questions about heat and human health, it turns out that we are very good at adapting to it—an adaptation that becomes better the more we are exposed to extreme heat.”

Knappernberger and many other climate scientists, believe that humans are very adaptable to extreme heat and can easily handle temperature changes, especially if the heat waves are a regular occurrence.

“Across the U.S., for example, the population has become much less sensitive to heat waves over the past 40-50 years—even as the frequency/magnitude of heat waves has increased. In fact, the hottest places in the country exhibit the lowest rates of heat-related mortality. In hot places, Miami, Dallas, Phoenix, for example, people know how to live with the heat,” Knappenberger continued. “I imagine that the same is true in the Middle East and Northern Africa—traditionally hot places where the lifestyles are well-adapted to such conditions.”

In developed countries, hot cities have the lowest rates of heat-related mortality while cooler cities in the northeast have the highest rates. Once people get accustomed to heat, they take the actions necessary to survive it. Scientific studies show heat waves that occur a few years after especially deadly heat waves result in far fewer deaths as the population has readily adapted.

Knappenberger concluded: “As air conditioning becomes more widespread— made possible through cheap and reliable energy sources— this adaptation can come close to becoming complete,” Knappenberger concluded.

Heat deaths in wealthy countries have been declining since 1960 despite predicted temperature increases.


A study from the University of Edinburgh shows that electric and hybrid vehicles emit as many, if not more, atmospheric toxins than fossil fuel-burning vehicles

The study, conducted by Victor Timmers and Peter Achten at the University of Edinburgh, and published by the journal Atmospheric Environment, found that heavier electric vehicles produce as many pollutants as their lighter weight conventional vehicles.

Electric vehicles tend to produce more pollutants from tire and brake wear, due in large part to their batteries, as well as the other parts needed to propel them, making them heavier.

These pollutants are emitted when electric vehicle tires and brakes deteriorate as they accelerate or slow down while driving. Timmers and Achten’s research suggests exhaust from traditional vehicles is only about one-third of the total emissions.

Further, the particulate matters are worse than fuel emissions, because they cause more health problems.

“We found that non-exhaust emissions, from brakes, tires and the road, are far larger than exhaust emissions in all modern cars,” Achten wrote in the study.

He continued: “These are more toxic than emissions from modern engines so they are likely to be key factors in the extra heart attacks, strokes and asthma attacks seen when air pollution levels surge.”

The study does not include the production of energy needed for each vehicle, from coal or other fossil fuel sources. It only calculates the driving of the car.

The increase in pollutants are generated from factors like tire wear dust and brake pad dust, and tend to increase as the electric vehicles and hybrids get heavier — due in part because of the added weight of the cars’ lithium batteries.

Adversely, the study shows the popularity of electric vehicles are unlikely to have much of an effect on the level of pollutants. In fact, electric vehicles actually emit 90 percent of particulate emissions, while traditional vehicles push out 85 percent of particulate emissions in traffic.

These proportions will only increase as electric vehicles become more popular.

The study’s authors concluded that future policies should focus more on the weight of electric and hybrid vehicles.

The Edinburgh study comes on the heels of research conducted in March by the investment firm Devonshire Research Group, a company that specializes in valuing and devaluing tech firms, showing that Tesla electric vehicles are “not as sustainable as they may seem.”

The study also shows that Tesla’s CEO, techno-wonder Elon Musk, could expose the company to “serious brand risk and an unknown legal exposure.”

In fact, according to the research, everything about the Tesla — from its headlights, to its chassis, to the way it is produced — contributes to environmental degradation.


Damaging emails from Warmists released

Unfolding is the latest chapter in the sad state of climate science and the tragic consequences scientists face when they decide to go political without having the experience to do so.

One has to wonder what these people were thinking when they expected dissenters to just roll over and waive their precious free speech rights.

A Virginia judge has ruled in favor of The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) in a Virginia Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against George Mason University, which was ordered yesterday to release documents and e-mails related to a group of scientists calling for the prosecution of organizations that promote manmade climate change skepticism – all under the US Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).

WUWT sees the scandal surrounding the controversy as one that is even more serious than the 2009 “Climategate” – an affair where e-mails exposed climate scientists exaggerating climate trends, manipulating the peer-review process, and skirting the freedom of information act.

A total of 5 PDFs have been released concerning George mason University, and with climate scientist Jagadish Shukla with a leading role.

As one reads the e-mails, it quickly emerges that some of the involved scientists (unwittingly) meandered out of their academic realm, with which they are comfortable and familiar, and into a political one that is very unfamiliar to them. Their scheme was ultimately aimed at intimidating and silencing scientific dissent.

Early on they were even advised that their case was very weak, and probably best left aside. For example Ed Maibach admitted (000003) that they really didn’t have much of a case:

Yet he seemed unable to resist the opportunity of getting “lots of media attention” (000006):

Maibach even fancied front page coverage in the Washington Post. What harm could it do to try?

We also see Shukla announcing (000003) how he decided to become politically active, that he was “new” at it, and wrote that the issue is more about politics than science:

Moreover he added that he had a “dedicated activist” on board for the science-based, world-saving political endeavor on which they were about to embark:

Clearly the political arena was a new one for scientist Shukla – one he seriously underestimated. Unfortunately he would soon find out, that at that the level he was entering, it was absolutely no place for political amateurs.

Threatening organizations and scientific dissenters with the powerful crime-fighting RICO Act was taken extremely seriously by dissenting individual scientists, bloggers, organsations etc. They in turn responded accordingly and moved vigorously to defend their rights against what they viewed as a serious fundamental human rights threat. Before too long revelations and allegations surfaced – and the arena became heated.

By early October, after serious allegations were made about Shukla’s salary and compensation, the blowback became too harsh. Shukla penned a letter (000033) backpedaling, claiming that their letter to IGES outlining their RICO effort was “misinterpreted” and that it “was not at all the case“:

He asserted the scientists didn’t mean to send the message that by involving RICO they were trying to silence individual and blogger dissent. Their purpose, instead, was only to punish organizations that might be funding the dissent. Those on the other side saw it differently. Indeed, words do need to be chosen carefully.

Moreover in the letter Shukla claims “much published credible evidence“, giving the impression of a solid case. Yet recall how in July he was told (000003) by Maibach that they had little to go on, that the chances of the Department of Justice (DOJ) pursuing the case were “slim to none”.

As one reads all the e-mails, it becomes apparent that the scientists-gone-activist have really woven themselves into a real mess, now that they have been exposed.

It’s a painful way for scientists to learn that it’s better to stick to science – and to let the politicking to others.

In any case they sought publicity – and now they’re getting it.


No balance.  Media rarely mention that in many ways global warming would be a good thing


Last week, a study in the prestigious journal Nature revealed just how much CO? increases have greened the Earth over the past three decades. Because CO? acts as a fertilizer, as much as half of all vegetated land is persistently greener today. This ought to be a cause for great joy.

Instead, the BBC focused on warning that the paper shouldn’t make us stop worrying about global warming, with threats like melting glaciers and more severe tropical storms. Many other major news outlets did not even report on the study.

Our climate conversation is lopsided. There is ample room to suggest that climate change has caused this problem or that negative outcome, but any mention of positives is frowned upon. We have known for decades that increasing CO? and precipitation from global warming will make the world much greener – by the end of the century, it is likely that global biomass will have increased by forty percent.

Similarly, we know that many more people die from cold than from heat. The biggest study on heat and cold deaths, published last year in Lancet, examined more than 74 million deaths from 384 locations in 13 countries from cold Sweden to hot Thailand. The researchers found that heat causes almost one-half of one percent of all deaths, while more than 7 percent are caused by cold.

As global warming pushes temperatures up, more people will die in heat waves; a point emphasized by campaigners like UN climate chief, Christiana Figueres. What we don’t hear from her is that fewer people will die from cold. One study for England and Wales shows that heat kills 1,500 annually and cold kills 32,000. By the 2080s, increased heat-waves will kill nearly 5,000 in a comparable population. But ‘cold deaths’ will have dropped by 10,000, meaning 6,500 fewer die altogether.

Only mentioning the negatives distorts and degrades the political conversation. Any reasonable person can recognize both positives and negatives among the policy proposals of both Tories and Labour. It is an extreme partisan that insists either side offers only negatives.

Yet, this is the position enforced by the climate alarmists – last seen in a letter to The Times from Lord Krebs and company, essentially telling the newspaper to stop reporting less-than-negative climate stories. While it is true any individual news story rarely represents the whole truth, it is revealing that such campaigners don’t send out similar letters to correct the daily deluge of alarmist stories.

The idea that climate is bad for all good things and good for all bad things belongs in a morality play. In the real world, we should look at all the available information. When the BBC warns of more severe tropical storms, it has some validity. The UN’s climate panel expects to see fewer but stronger hurricanes. But it is an incomplete picture.

As the world develops, it has become much less vulnerable: a hurricane hitting Florida kills few people while a similar event in Guatemala kills tens of thousands. Indeed, climate-related deaths have dropped from half a million per year in the 1920s to less than 25,000 per year in the 2010s. A recent Nature study expecting more severe hurricanes from global warming still found that damages would halve from 0.04 per cent to 0.02 per cent of global GDP, because the increased ferocity would be more than made up by increased prosperity and resilience.

When the BBC warns of melting glaciers it is reminiscent of Al Gore’s concern that 40 per cent of the world get drinking water from the Himalayas, and melting glaciers mean “those 40 per cent of the people on Earth are going to face a very serious shortage.” Yet, a new study of 60 climate models and scenarios shows this warning fails to take into account the fact that global warming will mean precipitation increases. Indeed, water flow will actually increase over this century, which is likely beneficial in increasing “water availability in the Indus Basin irrigation scheme during the spring growing seasons.”

If our climate conversation managed to include the good along with the bad, we would have a much better understanding of our options. Climate economics does just that, taking all the negatives (like rising sea levels and more heat deaths) and all the positives (a greener planet, fewer cold deaths). A climate economics approach finds that today – contrary to the alarmists’ massive insistence on negatives-only stories – global warming causes about as much damage as benefits. Over time, climate becomes a net problem: by the 2070s, the UN Climate Panel finds that global warming will likely cause damage equivalent to 0.2 per cent to 2 per cent of global GDP. This is certainly not a trivial cost, but nor is it the end of the world. It is perhaps half the social cost of alcohol today.

This suggests that a policy which could eradicate global warming for 1 per centof global GDP would probably be a good deal. Unfortunately, we do not have such a deal on the table. The Paris climate treaty will cost around 2 per cent of global GDP and fix much less than a tenth of the problem. Less effective but more ambitious climate policies cost at least 6 per cent of global GDP per year and likely much more. Wind and solar, which covers less than half of one percent of global energy, costs dozens of times more than their climate benefits. Electric cars provide perhaps a thousandth in climate benefit of their substantial public subsidies. Biofuels are just hugely costly while increasing emissions.

When we shift the climate conversation to describe positives along with negatives, and focus on costs and benefits of policies – essentially treating this challenge like any other policy agenda – it becomes obvious how many of today’s accepted climate policies are poor.  Little wonder climate campaigners do not want this sort of conversation.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


16 May, 2016

We Can't Blame Climate Change For The Canadian Fires

Last week I wrote a piece on my personal blog titled: "On forest fires climate activists aren't just insensitive, they are also wrong", which addressed some of the reporting that incorrectly claimed that climate change was responsible for the Fort McMurray fire.

The truth of the matter was presented by Elizabeth May:

"Some reports have suggested that the wildfires are directly caused by climate change. No credible climate scientist would make this claim, and neither do I make this claim."

The reason Ms. May made that statement is that she recognizes that legitimate forest fire experts know better than to make such claims. So what do knowledgeable researchers in the field say? The go-to person on this topic is Dr. Mike Flannigan from the University of Alberta. He is an expert on fire and weather/climate interactions.

Dr. Flannigan has been very careful with his language and has repeatedly stated: " it's impossible for scientists to say global warming caused this specific fire" and "this is an example of what we expect -- and consistent with what we expect for climate change." His wording is carefully chosen and deliberate. It presents a warning about future conditions while making no claims about current conditions.

Dr. Flannigan warns of a future when, according to his research, we will be able to see the effect of climate change on fire frequency. The problem is, as he has also said, science cannot make that claim yet. So the question to be asked is why are the activists making such broad claims when the experts in the field refuse to make the same claims?

From my reading the articles it is clear that many of the journalists were not really listening to what the forest scientists, like Dr. Flannigan, were saying and were instead just looking for quotes to insert into articles that simply reinforced their pre-existing biases. They did not recognize the difference between correlation and causation and so failed to understand what the forest scientists were trying to tell them.

A number of climate activists, meanwhile, are apparently confused by the weather in Alberta. They do not appear to understand that El Nino, not climate change, is responsible for the warm, dry winter. This fact was well-expected as experts predicted the warm, dry winter months ago.

In a final attempt to link climate change to the fire, many activists have alternatively claimed that the recent El Nino itself is the result of climate change. But when you ask the experts they dismiss that claim as well. Consider Dr. Fredolin Tangang who served from 2008 to 2015 as vice-chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and is one of the foremost international experts on El Nino. As he put it:

"There is no conclusive evidence that the occurrence of El Nino (frequency and intensity) is influenced by climate change...El Nino occurrences did not switch in frequency or intensity due to climate change."

Dr. Tangang does acknowledge that an El Nino can enhance the effects of climate change. To paraphrase Dr. Tangang: El Nino frequencies and intensities are not linked to climate change but since El Nino will heat up an area it could have an additive effect. That is, if an area is already hot, then El Nino will make it hotter.

So what actually caused the fire to be so severe? Well it appears to be a combination of the effects of El Nino and historic forest management decisions. To explain: after the Slave Lake fire in 2011 the Alberta Government sought advice on the fire situation. The result was the Flat Top Complex Wildfire Review Committee Report which made a number of recommendations and concluded:

"Before major wildfire suppression programs, boreal forests historically burned on an average cycle ranging from 50 to 200 years as a result of lightning and human-caused wildfires. Wildfire suppression has significantly reduced the area burned in Alberta's boreal forests. However, due to reduced wildfire activity, forests of Alberta are aging, which ultimately changes ecosystems and is beginning to increase the risk of large and potentially costly catastrophic wildfires."

Essentially the report acknowledged that the trees surrounding Fort McMurray are hard-wired for fire and if they are not managed properly then these types of catastrophic fires will become more common. The warm weather may have accelerated the fire season, but the stage was set for such a fire and not enough work was done to avoid it.

I have been repeatedly asked: "what does it hurt to say that the fire was caused by climate change?" Well, the whole point of the Flat Top Complex Report (which was written in 2011-2012 remember) was to help identify ways to avoid future catastrophic fires like the one that hit Fort McMurray.

As a pragmatist I recognize that we live in a world where our governments have finite budgets and need to allocate resources wisely; to do that they need good information. Bad information makes for bad decisions, and attributing the forest fire to climate change would mean advancing bad information over good.

That can only increase the likelihood that policy-makers will make poor decisions which we can all agree is not something we want to see.

SOURCE.  More on the Canadian fires here

Another finding that increased CO2 is greening the earth

Increased greening over 25% to 50% of the global vegetated area

Greening of the Earth and its drivers  by Zaichun Zhu et al.

Global environmental change is rapidly altering the dynamicsof terrestrial vegetation, with consequences for the functioningof the Earth system and provision of ecosystem services1,2. Yet how global vegetation is responding to the changing environment is not well established. Here we use three long-term satellite leaf area index (LAI) records and ten global ecosystem models to investigate four key drivers of LAI trends during 1982–2009. We show a persistent and widespread increase of growing season integrated LAI (greening) over 25% to 50% of the global vegetated area, whereas less than 4% of the globe shows decreasing LAI (browning). Factorial simulations with multiple global ecosystem models suggest that CO2 fertilization effects explain 70% of the observed greening trend, followed by nitrogen deposition(9%), climate change (8%) and land cover change (LCC) (4%). CO2 fertilization effects explain most of the greening trends in the tropics, whereas climate change resulted in greening of the high latitudes and the Tibetan Plateau. LCC contributed most to the regional greening observed in southeast China and the eastern United States. The regional effects of unexplained factors suggest that the next generation of ecosystem models will need to explore the impacts of forest demography,differences in regional management intensities for croplandand pastures, and other emerging productivity constraints such as phosphorus availability.


Obama White House showed ‘bad faith’ in global-warming case, judge rules

Third rebuke of administration’s transparency this year

The White House showed “bad faith” in how it handled an open records request for global warming data, a federal court ruled Monday, issuing yet another stinging rebuke to the administration for showing a lack of transparency.

For President Obama, who vowed to run the most transparent government in U.S. history, Judge Amit P. Mehta’s ruling granting legal discovery in an open records case — the third time this year a judge has ordered discovery — is an embarrassing black eye.

In this most recent case, the Competitive Enterprise Institute was trying to force the White House office of science and technology policy to release documents backing up Director John C. Holdren’s finding that global warming was making winters colder — a claim disputed by climate scientists.

Mr. Holdren’s staffers first said they couldn’t find many documents. They then tried to hide their release by saying the documents were all internal or were similar to what was already public.

Each of those claims turned out not to be true.

“At some point, the government’s inconsistent representations about the scope and completeness of its searches must give way to the truth-seeking function of the adversarial process, including the tools available through discovery. This case has crossed that threshold,” the judge wrote.


EPA’s New Methane Rule Won’t Slow Global Warming, Actually Increases CO2 Emissions

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unveiled new rules Thursday attempting to reduce methane emissions from hydraulically fractured, or fracked, oil and natural gas — these rules, however, may actually lead to more global warming.

The agency does not list the amount of temperature increases adverted in the rule’s press release, even though the rule exists just to limit global warming. Industry groups estimate the rule would only cause a temperature drop of 0.0047 degrees Celsius by the year 2100, an amount so small it couldn’t even be detected.

The regulation even has the potential to make global warming worse, as it will make producing natural gas harder, leading to more release of CO2 emissions — the alleged primary driver of global warming — according to a 2014 EPA report.

The report concluded that U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2012 fell to their lowest levels in 17 years, largely due to hydraulically fractured natural gas out-competing coal as a power source.

“The Regulatory Impact Analysis for the final rule shows that the rule is expected to have extremely minor impacts on production – less than 1/10th of 1 percent,” a spokesperson for the EPA told The Daily Caller News Foundation about inhibiting the production of fracked natural gas via regulation.

The EPA has noted that rising natural gas use from fracking is responsible for falling greenhouse gas emissions, saying in an April report, “a decrease in the carbon intensity of fuels consumed to generate electricity has occurred due to … increased natural gas consumption and other generation sources.”

Methane only accounted for 10.6 percent of total U.S. greenhouse-gas emissions in 2014, according to the EPA report. Most of these methane emissions were from agriculture, not the natural gas industry, which only accounted for about 2.6 percent of emissions.

Critics say that the EPA’s methane rules could significantly increase the costs of fracking.

“The methane rules are designed to make drilling new wells much more expensive. It is one step toward achieving the goal of ‘leave it in the ground,'” Myron Ebell, director of the Center for Energy and Environment at the libertarian Competitive Enterprise Institute, told TheDCNF. “Other steps include the BLM’s methane rule for production on federal lands, the EPA’s forthcoming methane rule for existing production, and the Interior Department’s coal leasing moratorium on federal lands.”

A report by the firm ICF International, which cited 75 scientific studies and EPA reports, concluded that methane emissions are declining in both absolute terms and per unit of natural gas produced, despite an enormous increase in the amount of gas produced.  Absolute methane emissions from natural gas fell by 15 percent between 1990 and 2014, and emissions per unit of natural gas produced dropped by 43 percent over the same period.

The report found that net greenhouse gas emissions are decreasing, which does not bode well for anti-fracking campaigns or the EPA’s new methane regulations. The new gas production has caused America to transition to clean burning natural gas-fired power plants, which emit far less CO2 than conventional coal power, leading to a 12 percent decline in greenhouse gas emissions since 2005.

The Sierra Club and other environmental groups assert the environmental advantages of fracking are negated by increased methane emissions, but this claim isn’t supported by science.

“These regulations aren’t about climate. They are about increasing the cost of reliable, affordable energy to make Mr. Obama’s pet energy sources, such as wind and solar, appear more cost effective than they actually are,” Thomas Pyle, president of the conservative, said about the methane rule in a press release. “And while these regulations won’t impact the climate, they will increase the cost of natural gas for American families that just want to keep their houses warm, have hot water, and use their dryers.”


Checkmating The Left On Global Warming

Liberal politicians like Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, and John Kerry tell us global warming is the greatest threat to our national security and future generations, requiring the transformation of our economy to expensive and unreliable wind and solar power. If the left is sincere about this assertion, then they should support all energy sources that reduce carbon dioxide emissions. This presents conservatives an excellent opportunity to call the left’s bluff or make them put their money where their collective mouth is.

Wind and solar, after all, are not the only power sources that produce little or no carbon dioxide emissions. Natural gas power emits only half as much carbon dioxide as coal power, and hydro power and nuclear power emit no carbon dioxide emissions at all. Natural gas and nuclear power are available on-demand, unlike wind and solar power that are extremely limited on cloudy days, low-wind days and at night. Hydro power is not quite an on-demand power source, but it is much more reliable and predictable than wind and solar. Because wind and solar require conventional power backup, hydro and nuclear power actually reduce carbon dioxide emissions even more effectively than wind and solar, and natural gas emissions become comparatively smaller relative to wind and solar.
Conservatives have long championed natural gas, hydro and nuclear power because of their relative affordability. Natural gas power and hydroelectric power are cost-comparative with coal power. Nuclear power is about 50% more expensive, but new technologies and more common-sense government regulation offer the promise of significant reductions in future costs. Even without any such future cost reductions, nuclear power remains substantially more affordable than wind and solar.

So why does the left demand wind, solar or nothing? This is a very good question that conservative policymakers can target. Global warming is a greater threat to the American people than global terrorism, you say? Fine, then stop obstructing the hydraulic fracturing (fracking) process that is responsible for approximately half of our natural gas production. Global warming is a greater threat to the American military than Russian fighters that simulate attacks on our Navy vessels in international waters? Then stop demanding we dismantle hydroelectric dams that produce affordable, emissions-free electricity. Global warming is a greater threat to our military than a rapidly militarizing China? Then allow America to generate more of our electricity from nuclear power, as do nations such as France.

The American people understand that wind and solar power are intermittent, unreliable and prohibitively expensive. The left, however, distracts public attention away from these costs and shortcomings by claiming no price is too expensive to solve the greatest crisis facing America and the world today. Conservatives need to remind American voters that even if the dubious global warming crisis is real, we can address it – right now and in a bipartisan manner – by removing the political obstacles that stifle low-carbon natural gas production and emissions-free hydro and nuclear power.

Pressuring the left via natural gas, hydro power and nuclear power will produce one of two possible outcomes. Under one outcome, the left agrees to stop opposing these low- and zero- emission power sources. The left achieves its desired carbon dioxide reductions while conservatives successfully safeguard our economy from expensive and unreliable wind and solar. Under the other outcome, the left refuses to budge in its opposition to everything except wind and solar. In the process, the left will lose substantial political credibility; after all, the left can hardly make the argument that global warming is our nation’s greatest threat while it rejects a multitude of reasonable, affordable and effective means to substantially reduce carbon dioxide emissions.



Global sea-level expert John Church made redundant by Australian research organization

Warmist John Church is most unchurchly.  His claims have little to do with reality. See  here and here.  He deserves the boot

For John Church, a leading authority on sea-level rise caused by global warming, there was much that was fitting – and yet callous – about being sacked at sea.

The veteran scientist was well into one of dozens of research voyages he had taken since joining CSIRO as a post doctoral student in 1979.

His vessel, the RV Investigator, was midway between Antarctica and New Zealand and steaming north on the 170 degree longitude when he received Thursday's call to tell him he was "potentially redundant".

Sitting with a supporter in the ship's conference room, Dr Church was told his services were no longer needed. "I was OK during the call but it is certainly not a nice feeling to have what you have worked for - for so many years - thrown on the scrapheap," the 64 year-old told Fairfax Media after finishing a 12-hour stint on watch.

Dr Church's achievements include developing sophisticated models linking sparse tidal gauge information around the world with satellite data to reveal how much sea levels are rising.

The current mission is retracing previous journeys along the 170 W longitude line to measure precisely how key parameters such as temperature, salinity and acidity are changing.

As Dr Church notes, including in a Nature paper published last month, sea-level increases are accelerating as a warming planet melts glaciers and swells oceans.

From increases of a few tenths of a millimetre annually in the 1000 years before about 1850, the rate jumped 1.7 mm on average in the 20th century. Since 1993, the rise has quickened to about 3 mm a year, he says.

Despite this trend, CSIRO will slash about half the climate staff – about 70 scientists - in its Oceans & Atmosphere division. New hires will be made in climate adaptation and mitigation, the agency promises but numbers cited so far are much smaller.

As with other CSIRO staff, Dr Church will get a chance to save his job. The sole scientist on board to be told of a pending redundancy, he was granted until June 16 – or three weeks after the voyage ends in Wellington, New Zealand – to argue his case.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


15 May, 2016

Global warming won’t just change the weather—it could trigger massive earthquakes and volcanoes (?)

There's a grain of truth in what he says.  Drastic warming would cause crustal uplift in circumpolar regions -- but all the rest is speculative, entirely dependent on CO2 causing warming.  That there is no correlation between the two seems not to bother him

Bill McGuire is not optimistic about humanity’s future. In his book, Waking the Giant: How a changing climate triggers earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes, he explains why.

By his estimation, carbon dioxide emissions from human activity since industrialization began have changed the trajectory of earth’s climate for the next 100,000 years. We are already experiencing the mayhem and destruction that these changes can wreak, and, in the long term, things are only going to get worse.

On the face of it, the hypothesis that a few degrees’ rise in the average temperature of the atmosphere can cause the earth’s tectonic plates to move sounds ludicrous. Yet, McGuire, professor of geophysical and climate hazards at University College London, shows through careful analysis of historical records that the relationship between the weather and the “solid” earth is incontrovertible.

We caught up with him recently to talk about his hopes and fears. Here’s an edited and condensed version of our conversation.

Q. How is that human activities in the last two centuries could have an effect on the earth’s climate for the next 100,000 years?

McGuire: The climate system takes so long to respond and return to normal. We had a period about 55 million years ago, called the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM). It was a period of about 10,000 years, where global temperatures rose by about 6°C [11°F]. This is extremely rapid in geological terms. We had palm trees in Russia; crocodiles swimming in the Arctic ocean.

It sounds incredible, but the really scary thing is that we could now see our temperatures go up by 6°C in a few hundred years.

What we are doing now, and if we carry on doing it for the next few centuries, is raise temperatures in 1/50th of time it took to do the same in the PETM. The rate at which we are raising the global average temperature is simply unprecedented.

Q. But wasn’t there a time when the global temperatures were even higher, like 15°C higher than pre-industrial times?

What we’ve done now is that we’ve taken all the carbon from hundreds of millions of years, which has been locked up in fossil fuels, and we’ve stuck it in the atmosphere in a time of two hundred years.

Then there are the feedback effects that will kick in. Human-caused warming will trigger natural events, which will increase temperatures further. One of those is the release of methane permafrost, especially that stuck under the Arctic.

We don’t need to wait till 2100 to trigger that. People who are working on this say that we could see the release of this permafrost at any time. There’s potential for tens of billions of tonnes of methane to be released just like that [snaps fingers]. Some of these releases could bring global warming prediction ahead by as much as 30 years.

People don’t understand these events. They think it’s a gradual ramping up of the temperature. The real impacts are extreme events—storms, droughts, floods—but also potentially even more extreme events, like these methane outbursts.

Q. OK, so, say that happens. Temperatures go up. When do we then see the effects on the solid earth?

We could see that very soon. The big worry is Greenland. It has 2-3 km (1.2-1.9 miles) of ice on top of its lithosphere. That weight is pushing down the crust. Taking that ice off could trigger earthquakes.

We’re seeing that in Alaska. A lot of ice has been lost in the last 100 years, and the faults there are lot more active now. Previously, because of the weight, they couldn’t move but they were accumulating strain because of the earth’s movement.


Trump Names Energy Adviser Who’s Dubious Of Global Warming Claims

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has enlisted a congressman who is a strong proponent of fracking and a skeptic of global warming to be one of his key energy advisers.

Rep. Kevin Cramer of North Dakota has been asked by the campaign to write a white paper on energy policy.

“Cramer said in an interview his paper would emphasize the dangers of foreign ownership of U.S. energy assets, burdensome taxes, and over-regulation,” Reuters reported.

According to the Associated Press, North Dakota ranks second only to Texas in oil production in the United States, thanks to a fracking boom that has generated billions of dollars of wealth for the state. North Dakota enjoys the lowest unemployment rate in the nation at 3 percent.

Trump has signaled during the course of the primary campaign that he supports continued natural resource development in the United States. He promised the coal miners of West Virginia in the lead up to Tuesday’s election in the Mountain State that he would put them back to work. Thousands have lost their jobs thanks to EPA regulations adopted by the Obama administration to address “climate change.”

Cramer is a global warming skeptic. “These mandates and these wind farms are all based on this fraudulent science from the EPA,” he has said, “meaning their claim that CO2 is a pollutant and is causing global warming. … The idea that CO2 is somehow causing global warming is on its face fraudulent.”

As reported by Western Journalism, while President Obama has argued the science community has definitively proved man-man climate change as a fact, thousands of scientists question those findings.

The co-founder of the Weather Channel, John Coleman, also doubts the global warming claims, writing in an open letter last fall:

“The ocean is not rising significantly. The polar ice is increasing, not melting away. Polar Bears are increasing in number. Heat waves have actually diminished, not increased. There is not an uptick in the number or strength of storms (in fact storms are diminishing).

I have studied this topic seriously for years. It has become a political and environment agenda item, but the science is not valid.”


For Oil Drillers, Obama Methane Rule Is Worse Than originally Proposed

The Obama administration, yielding to environmentalists demanding action to address climate change, issued limits on methane emissions from oil and gas wells that are even tougher than those it proposed last year.

The final regulations unveiled Thursday will add an estimated $530 million in additional costs per year by 2025, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. That’s at least 25 percent higher than the preliminary version released in August, and it comes as low oil prices force the industry to pare spending on new exploration.

The administration estimates the costs will be offset by savings from averting severe storms, floods and other consequences of climate change. Those savings will total $690 million a year by 2025, according to the EPA. By contrast, the 2015 proposal was estimated to cost $320 million to $420 million in 2025, with potential benefits of as much as $550 million.

"The commonsense steps we’re rolling out today will help combat climate change and reduce air pollution that immediately harms public health," EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy told reporters on a conference call. The mandates, applying immediately to new and modified wells, are a "critical first step in tackling methane emissions from existing oil and gas sources."

Climate Policies

The rule, part of a broader administration campaign to combat climate change, is one of the last major environmental measures President Barack Obama is likely to issue before leaving the White House.

The oil and gas industry is the leading source of methane, an intense but short-lived greenhouse gas shown to warm the atmosphere 84 times more than carbon dioxide when measured over two decades.

Under the rule, companies will have to upgrade pumps and compressors, while expanding the use of so-called “green completion” technology meant to capture the surge of gas that can spring out of newly fracked wells. Such green completion techniques have been required at new and modified natural gas wells since 2015, but Thursday’s rule would broaden the requirement to oil wells too.

Environmentalists’ Pleas

The EPA expanded the final regulation in response to concerns from environmentalists, who said the draft proposal didn’t go far enough. For instance, the agency dropped its proposed waiver for low-producing wells that generate less than 15 barrels per day of oil or its equivalent. That could have exempted thousands of wells each year from the rule’s new leak detection requirements.

The EPA also yielded to environmentalists’ pleas for more frequent inspections, by requiring companies to hunt for methane at compressor stations four times a year instead of twice, as initially proposed. At wells and associated equipment, however, the agency stuck with a semiannual timetable.

The final rule "represents a solid improvement over the original proposal," said Conrad Schneider, advocacy director for the Clean Air Task Force, which had lobbied for the changes. "We feel great that EPA is finalizing the first-ever standards for methane emissions from any industry, and it’s totally appropriate that they’re doing it from the No. 1 emitter."
Battered Sector

The regulation drew an angry response from oil and gas leaders, who insisted even the softer proposal was unnecessary in light of the industry’s work to cut methane emissions. Because methane is the primary ingredient in natural gas, energy companies have a financial incentive to keep it bottled up as it moves from the wellhead to compressor stations and into storage tanks.

The rule effectively asks an already battered industry to do more with less, amid low oil and gas prices, dwindling rig counts and thousands of lost jobs, said Sandra Snyder, a lawyer specializing in environmental regulation at Bracewell LLP.

“Industry has been making great strides to voluntarily reduce its methane emissions because doing so makes economic sense,” Snyder said. “Imposing additional reporting and regulatory paperwork obligations is even more burdensome at this time.”

Industry officials also warn that aggressive new mandates -- on top of other, still-proposed regulations clamping down on gas that is vented or burned on federal land -- could wipe out small, independent producers. Companies could spend more paring incremental methane emissions than they will recover by selling the natural gas they keep from leaking, industry groups said.

‘Burdensome Regulations’

“It doesn’t make sense that the administration would add unreasonable and overly burdensome regulations when the industry is already leading the way in reducing emissions,” said Kyle Isakower, vice president of regulatory and economic policy for the American Petroleum Institute.

Environmentalists said the EPA’s changes made the rule more comprehensive. "The studies that we’ve done tell you that leaks and equipment malfunctions are randomly distributed across the industry and different types of facilities," said Mark Brownstein, vice president of the Climate and Energy Program at the Environmental Defense Fund. "Really the only way you get at it is if you are vigilant in terms of inspecting and maintaining your facilities."

The EPA rule will help the U.S. move closer to fulfilling Obama’s pledge to slash oil and gas sector methane emissions by 40 percent to 45 percent from 2012 levels by 2025. The new methane rule alone won’t be enough to meet the goal, but it provides a legal stepping stone to requirements for 1 million existing wells too.

Obama’s Promise

Obama promised during a March summit with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that the U.S. would go after existing oil and gas sources.

The EPA formally kicked off that process Thursday by releasing a draft information collection request asking oil and gas companies to turn over two waves of data about emissions, pollution-reducing equipment and associated costs. All owners and operators will be asked to respond to the first request, seeking information an Obama administration official said would be readily available. A smaller subset of facility owners would be to provide more detailed data.

Although most of the requirements for new wells would apply immediately, energy companies have a year to submit leak detection and repair plans. Green completion technology will be required at new oil wells within six months, but energy companies would still be forced to reduce emissions at those sites in the meantime, including by burning excess gas.

Plugging Leaks

Some oil and gas companies have moved aggressively -- and voluntarily -- to plug methane leaks. But investors still worry the industry is moving too slowly to solve what could be an existential risk, said Andrew Logan, director of the oil and gas program at Ceres, a network of investors with $14 trillion in assets that promotes sustainable business practices.

"If the industry doesn’t address methane, natural gas risks becoming part of the problem instead of part of the solution to climate change," Logan said in a phone interview. "For an industry that is really betting the farm on natural gas as its key to relevancy in a low-carbon world, that’s a huge problem."

The EPA estimates the final standards will reduce 510,000 short tons of methane in 2025 -- roughly the same effect as slashing 11 million metric tons of carbon dioxide. The EPA didn’t calculate a dollar amount for lower rates of asthma and other potential public health benefits tied to the reduction in volatile organic compounds and other conventional pollutants.

Critics hinted at a possible legal challenge of the new methane rules, like the court battle that has stalled Obama’s Clean Power Plan.

"If these ‘commonsense standards’ for the EPA’s methane rule are anything like the ‘commonsense standards’ used for their power plant rules, we’re in for another long battle of correcting the agency’s mistakes," said Myron Ebell, director of the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

McCarthy stressed that the rule was grounded in science, squarely within the EPA’s authority under the Clean Air Act and "will be solid in the courts."

"It is tremendously cost effective," she said. "It is a rule that industry will be able to comply with."


Pop bottle science ‘grossly exaggerates’ CO2

One of the half dozen ways in which the proponents of what is increasingly known worldwide as “the global warming hoax” violate the basic fundamentals of scientific procedure is the selective manipulation and distortion of basic data.

The recent letter succeeds in providing a most graphic example of such blatant violation. The writer refers to a so-called “science class experiment” in which a comparison of heat retention is supposedly demonstrated with pop bottles. He conveniently omitted the fact that the concentration of pure CO2 was 2,500 times higher than in the atmosphere.

Since the molecular weight of CO2 is approximately 50 per cent higher than that of the components of air, the single CO2 molecule within the other 2,500 molecules in air would have a tendency to absorb more heat, but to an overall negligible effect.

The use of pure CO2 in the CO2 pop bottle therefore exaggerates the heat retention effect of the CO2 by 2,500 times.

 I find this intentional attempt to grossly exaggerate the effect of CO2 to be appalling and disgraceful. It is disturbing that such deceitful measures are actually used in classrooms

This leads me to have serious questions regarding the ethics of any teachers agreeing to such practises, as well as all global warming alarmists in general. Snider suggests that this farcical “experiment” should be performed in local schools. I would hope that our local teachers place a higher value on ethics and respect for their students.


Some Canadian insanity

One of the busiest and most beautiful lakes in Alberta is Wabamun Lake.

What makes this even more extraordinary is that the area is also dotted with coal-fired power plants. They’re small, close to zero-emission, reliable, and provide cheap power.

Putting up the same number of wind turbines, for example, would turn the whole area into an ugly hundred square mile wind factory and bird sacrifice zone.

But that’s what Rachel Notley and the NDP are planning to do, remember: eliminate the clean coal power plants.

Well, Enmax, the power company for Calgary, recently announced that they are cancelling their contract to buy coal-fired power. Three other Alberta power companies have done the same thing: TransCanada, AltaGas and Capital Power.

You'd think Notley's government would be thrilled. Except that when all these energy companies bail out of coal-fired power, the province has to pick up the contract.

So now the NDP is panicking, obviously. The Alberta government is already collapsing under debt. Now they realize they will be on the hook for billions of dollars of coal-fired power that they themselves just made useless.

Did the NDP not know this would happen when they went on about “getting out of coal”?


South Australia is now coal-free -- so it imports coal-powered electricity from a neighboring state

Empty Greenie boasting

South Australia’s last coal-fired power station closed on Monday this week, leaving the state with only gas and wind power generators.

The Northern Power Station, in Port Augusta on the northern end of the Spencer Gulf, has joined Playford B – the state’s other coal-fired power station which has already been retired.

The coal mine at Leigh Creek that supplied brown coal to the power stations also closed earlier this year, so there is no easy option for re-opening the power stations.

The immediate impact of the closure was a brief wobble in wholesale electricity prices, with more energy brought in from Victoria’s brown coal power stations (adding to carbon emissions).

But how could it affect the state in the long term?
Could South Australia run out of power?

Average electricity demand in South Australia is 1.4 gigawatts, and the state record for peak demand of 3.4 gigawatts was set in January 2011. In the past two years the highest demand was 2.9 gigawatts.

Rollout of rooftop solar panels is one of the reasons demand from the grid has been going down. The impact on the peak demand – the time of day when most people are using appliances – is less clear, because if the peak occurs after sunset, solar panels will not reduce it.

With the closure of the 520 megawatt Northern Power Station, South Australia is left with 2,800 MW of capacity in its gas-fired generators, which can be fired up when needed, and 1,500 MW of wind farms, which of course produce energy only when the wind blows. Most gas generation capacity comes from the Torrens Island A (480 MW) and B (800 MW) installations, built in the 1960s and 1970s, respectively.

There have been discussions about retiring Torrens Island A (it was mothballed for a period in 2014), but the departure of Northern appears to have delayed those plans.

The state also has a total of about 600 MW of rooftop solar, but, as noted above, this technically counts as reducing demand rather than adding to supply.

South Australia is also connected to Victoria via two transmission lines, one at Heywood (recently upgraded to 650 MW) and one at Murray Link (220 MW). This gives the state access to a potential 870 MW of Victorian power.

If South Australia gets close to record demand, the state clearly outstrips the capacity of the local gas generators. If the wind isn’t blowing, then the state will depend on the interconnectors.

But there is an unfortunate factor that transmission lines tend to fail under very high temperatures, which correspond to the times of highest demand.

It may sound unlikely, but South Australia is at risk of failing to meet demand.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


13 May, 2016

5 Years Later, Deaths Caused by Radiation Leak at Fukushima: 0

Good disproof of the Leftist contention that there is no safe level of radiation.  Moderate doses can even be beneficial

Since the horrific earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear reactor meltdown in Japan on March 11, 2011, there have been no deaths directly caused by the radiation leak from the nuclear plant in Fukushima, which is located on the northeast side of Japan.

The latest update (in April) by the World Nuclear Association on the Fukushima disaster states, “there have been no deaths or cases of radiation sickness from the nuclear accident.”

Also, in a May 11 e-mail to, Jaya Mohan, information officer for the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR), said “no deaths directly caused by radiation exposure after the accident at the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant have been reported.”

That conclusion corresponds with what the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported in August 2015, and what UNSCEAR confirmed in 2013 and projected for the future.

In its 2015 report, the The Fukushima Daiichi Accident, the IAEA stated, “No early radiation induced health effects were observed among workers or members of the public that could be attributed to the accident.”

The IAEA noted that the “latency time for late radiation health effects can be decades,” but said “given the low levels of doses reported among members of the public, the conclusions of this report are in agreement with those of the UNSCEAR to the United Nations General Assembly.”

The UNSCEAR had reported in May 2013, two years after the Fukushima accident, “Radiation exposure following the nuclear accident at Fukushima-Daiichi did not cause any immediate health effects. It is unlikely to be able to attribute any health effects in the future among the general public and the vast majority of workers.”

“No radiation-related deaths or acute effects have been observed among nearly 25,000 workers (including TEPCO employees and contractors) involved at the accident site,” reported the UNSCEAR.  (TEPCO is the acronym for the Tokyo Electric Power Company.)

“On the whole,” said UNSCEAR, “the exposure of the Japanese population was low, or very low, leading to correspondingly low risks of health effects later in life.. The actions taken to protect the public (evacuation and sheltering) significantly reduced the radiation exposures that would have otherwise been received.”

Three TEPCO workers were killed “directly by the earthquake and tsunami, but there have been no fatalities from the nuclear accident,” reported the World Nuclear Association in April 2016.

The earthquake on March 11, 2011, triggered a massive tsunami, which killed about 19,000 people and destroyed more than a million buildings.

A combination of factors caused by the earthquake and tsunami led three of the reactors at Fukushima Daiichi to go into meltdown – the nuclear fuel rods could not be cooled and subsequently got too hot and started to melt, which led to several explosions and the release of radiation.


EPA regulations Causing Huge Increase in Housing Prices

In a five-year period, government regulation increased the price of building a home by nearly 25%, a report from the National Association of Home Builders finds. When it comes to buying a new home, the average homebuyer is paying $84,671 more today than he or she was in 2011. Most of these costs come from developing the lot — even before concrete is poured or framing goes up. Thanks, Environmental Protection Agency.

According to the NAHB, in this half decade, regulation has accounted for a nearly 30% increase in the cost of a house. “By comparison, disposable income per capita increased by 14.4% from 2011-2016,” NAHB wrote. “In other words, the cost of regulation in the price of a new home is rising more than twice as fast as the average American’s ability to pay for it.”

Pricing Americans out of homes is a government-caused problem. When will the government think it should impose a government-inspired “solution”? Before the 2008 housing bubble, statists decided that every American should be able to take out a home loan. Will they repeat history and think of a similar situation in a few years? Government regulation weighed down our economic growth. Now it’s come for new homeowners.


New US federal rule would permit thousands of eagle deaths

From the recent AP article announcing a plan that would allow wind companies and other power providers to "kill or injure up to 4,200 bald eagles a year without penalty" the USFWS gave out official numbers pertaining to the current population status of Golden eagles. A population I might add that has been rapidly declining in the western US.

Fish and Wildlife Service estimates there are about 143,000 bald eagles in the United States, and 40,000 golden eagles."

I will explain very clearly why this statement is not even close to being true and I will use official USFWS data to prove it. When I am finished it will be very clear to most that the USFWS is either very incompetent, very corrupt and probably both.

Look closely at these official golden eagle population figures released in 2013. The estimated population for an area totaling 422,391 square miles is a measly 526 golden eagles. In addition the USFWS openly admits that this region is also host to the highest density of nesting golden eagles in the world........

"The highest known density of nesting golden eagles is in central California among the rolling hills of Alameda and Contra Costa counties."

The large geographical area of 422,391 square miles given in the USFWS table, amounts to about 16% of the entire land mass covering the lower 48 states. If there were equal numbers of golden eagles spread out over the entire lower 48 states there would still only be about 3950 golden eagles. This is a figure more than ten times lower than the 40,000 golden eagle population released by the Interior Department on 5/4/2016

Of course declaring 10 times too many eagles means that ten times as many turbines can be built for the wind industry and ten times as many eagles can be legally killed. Then one must consider that there are virtually no golden eagles remaining in the eastern half of the lower 48 states, so how big is this lie being told?

The truth of the matter is that our golden eagle population in the western US has not only been rapidly declining we have a government agency hiding this fact and then lying to the public with highly embellished fake population statistics. 

It is for many reasons like the example just given from my research, that I can boldly proclaim the Interior Department to be a corrupt government agency in collusion with the wind industry.


Denmark’s Electricity Subsidies Increase by 1000%

The European Commission hopes that its Energy Union strategy will make the EU’s energy supply more secure, affordable and climate-friendly. But the energy market is highly fragmented, and focused on national interests.

The price that the average European household pays per kWh of electricity has risen from 12 cents in 2005 to 18 cents in 2014. However, the prices in individual countries varies significantly. In Bulgaria and Hungary, households currently pay around 10 cents per kWh. In Germany and Denmark, energy is three times more expensive.

Factors that influence cost include a country’s geographical location, energy resources, and world market prices. But energy policies are increasingly a significant factor.

Energy subsidies are growing across the majority of countries in the European Union. Only Austria and Sweden decreased their subsidies from 2008 to 2012. The rest of the EU increased by 57%. Leading the way? Denmark and Greece, which increased subsidies by over 1000%, and Germany, which accounts for roughly 25% of all energy subsidies in the EU.

But despite more subsidies, electricity prices are still increasing. While household electricity prices have risen by 50% from 2005 to 2014, the average price for industrial consumers has increased by 66%.

These prices also vary significantly across the EU. In Germany and the Netherlands, prices for medium-sized industries have remained fairly stable, increasing by approximately 25%. In the United Kingdom and Poland, however, prices have gone up by as much as 100%.

To build a successful Energy Union, the Commission has a tough job ahead of itself: harmonising the different national policies, building a transnational infrastructure, and getting member states to work together, towards a common goal.


Climate: The Real ‘Worrisome Trend’

By Meteorologist Joe D'Aleo

Who is pushing this end-of-hydrocarbon-energy to prevent an end-of-world-calamity agenda? The list is long and includes politicians and UN globalists (look up Agenda 21) who seek more power and control over every aspect of your life.

Scientists, environmentalists, green NGOs and corporations are all chasing the $1.5 trillion per year that feeds the climate crisis and renewable energy industry. The lengthy list also includes scientifically illiterate population-control socialists and Hollywood cause seekers, who are all supported by environmental journalists who never question any “green” causes or scare stories.

Many use the “precautionary principle” to justify drastic actions that perversely have truly drastic consequences, intended or unintended.

Bad Policy, Bad Impacts

Eco-fanaticism has already pummeled Europe. In the past ten years, the price of electricity in Europe has climbed by an average of 63 percent. Polling indicates that 38% of British households are cutting back essential purchases like food, to pay high and rising energy bills. Another 59% of homes are worried about how they will pay energy bills when the Paris accord is enforced.

Poor and middle class families are impacted worst of all.

Families and businesses in the “Blue States” in the Northeast already pay the highest electricity prices in the United States – twice that of some other states. The changes the EPA and this administration are pushing could double those rates – and the rates in other states. 

The thousands of dollars that an average Northeastern family saved on gasoline and heating oil in 2015, thanks to fracking and drilling on private land, was truly welcomed as the only “raise” that many families got in many a year.

However, that too will be a memory, if the EPA’s plans are not blocked by the courts – or a President Trump. Moreover, if elected president, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders both plan to eliminate fracking, as well as most conventional oil and gas drilling and production.

With a Hillary Clinton administration and newly Democrat Congress promising to kill fracking and eliminate, hyper-regulate and/or over-tax fossil fuels, energy costs per family would increase thousands of dollars a year. This happened in Europe when the greens took control.

Moreover, soaring energy prices ripple through the entire economy, affecting the cost of all goods and services – including products and services provided by factories, hospitals, schools, small businesses and the shipping of food and other products. Soaring energy prices kill jobs and depress living standards, as companies and communities find they must come up with thousands to millions of extra dollars every year, just to keep the lights, heat and air conditioning on and machinery humming.

That means more industries will head overseas, where energy costs and workers’ wages are far lower, while millions of Americans will be relegated to part-time positions, service jobs at far less than they had been getting, or welfare and unemployment benefits for the newly and perhaps permanently jobless.

Meanwhile, the United States will be expected to send billions of dollars to poor countries and emerging economies, as climate change “reparation, mitigation and adaptation” payments, under the new Paris climate treaty. And those now relatively poor nations, including China and India, will be still burning fossil fuels and taking away our jobs, to lift their people out of poverty.

All the sacrifices by Americans, Europeans and families in other now-developed, now-rich countries will be for naught.

This is what the so-called “progressives” want and are marching in the streets to get.

The Climate Alarmists’ Real Goals

Former Washington State Democratic governor Dixy Lee Ray saw the second Treaty of Paris coming many years ago. “The future is to be [One] World Government with central planning by the United Nations,” she said. “Fear of environmental crises – whether real or not – is expected to lead to compliance.”

Last year, UN Climate Chief Christiana Figueres stated bluntly:

"Our aim is not to save the world from ecological calamity but to change the global economic system…. This is probably the most difficult task we have ever given ourselves, which is to intentionally transform the economic development model, for the first time in human history"

In simpler terms, she intends to replace free enterprise, entrepreneurial capitalism with UN-controlled, centralized, socialized One World government and economic control.

In November 2010, IPCC official Ottmar Edenhofer presented an additional reason for UN climate policies. “One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy,” he said. It is not. It is actually about how “we redistribute de facto the world’s wealth.”

In addition to everything else that is wrong, destructive and simply perverse about energy and climate policies, these are truly scary developments. And to top it all off, the Obama administration’s Justice Department is now seriously considering the idea of joining state attorneys general in prosecuting companies, organizations and individuals who dare to think independently and refute claims that human-driven global warming is the greatest danger of all to our future well-being.

All of this sounds a lot more like pre-world war two Germany than the United States of America. It is certainly a trend that we should worry about far more than any honestly conceivable threat from any nearly imperceptible human contribution to the climate changes that have always buffeted humanity and our planet.


Mad Muslim says Islamophobia accelerates global warming


A recent lecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology explored the possible impact of Islamophobia on global warming.

The lecture, titled “Is Islamophobia Accelerating Global Warming?” has been reported by Fox News and other outlets and mocked on social media. It took place Monday evening and was presented by the university’s Ecology and Justice Forum In Global Studies and Languages, according to an online advertisement.

The event sought to explore “the relation between Islamophobia as the dominant form of racism today and the ecological crisis.”

“It looks at the three common ways in which the two phenomena are seen to be linked: as an entanglement of two crises, metaphorically related with one being a source of imagery for the other and both originating in colonial forms of capitalist accumulation,” the advertisement explained.

“The talk proposes a fourth way of linking the two: an argument that they are both emanating from a similar mode of being, or enmeshment, in the world, what is referred to as ‘generalized domestication.’”

The talk was administered by Ghassan Hage, currently a future generation professor at the University of Melbourne’s School of Philosophy, Anthropology and Social Inquiry. Hage is currently working on a book of the same title as the lecture and is known for his 2002 book White Nation: Fantasies of White Supremacy in a Multicultural Society.

Hage, who was born in Lebanon, openly supports the anti-Israel Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement. Hage compared Israelis to “slave owners” on Twitter in 2013, Fox News highlighted, and also suggested that Palestinian militants are “freedom fighters” in an essay published in 2010.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


12 May, 2016

Climate Crisis and Political Power

April 22nd was Earth Day and also the day that 175 countries came to the UN to sign a “climate pact” they hope will limit any rise in global temperatures to well below two degrees Celsius. Global temperatures, the Times reports have risen about one degree since the onset of the Industrial Revolution 250 years ago, in the middle of the 18th century.

This, of course, is all part of the so-called fight against “climate change.”  But is climate change the existential threat such people as Al Gore and the actor Leonardo DiCaprio, who spoke at Friday’s UN ceremony, say it is? I’m skeptical, to say the least, for several reasons.

1) Sound science produces predictions that come true. The science behind climate change does not. Indeed, the experts have been proven wrong time and time again. Around the time of the first Earth Day, scientists were predicting a coming ice age. Then, as global average temperatures rose in the 1980’s, global warming became the big threat. Al Gore in 2005 predicted that the polar ice caps would be gone by 2015, leading to a catastrophic rise in sea levels. But in 2015, the polar ice caps were not gone. They were, in fact, above the average for the period since 1979. The computer climate models predict steady warming. But the warming stopped in 1998. If the computer models cannot accurately predict what is now the past, why should we rely on them to predict the future?

That’s exactly why the threat of “global warming” suddenly became the threat of “climate change,” a much more generalized — indeed, fuzzy — term. The climate on Earth, after all, has been changing since the planet formed 4.5 billion years ago, ranging from periods of tropical warmth as far as the poles to “snowball earth,” when the entire globe was covered in ice. In the early 14th Century, the world grew suddenly and sharply colder. The “Little Ice Age,” as it was dubbed in recent years, lasted until the last half of the 19th Century. Those climate shifts could not have been anthropogenic.

2) Science is always skeptical. But when it comes to climate, we are constantly being told that “the science is settled,”  which translates into the immortal words of  Ring Lardner, “’shut up,’ he explained.” The most forceful advocates of a climate change crisis are exactly the people trying most vigorously to shut down the argument. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island wants to use RICO to go after skeptics. Twenty state attorneys general are trying to go after Exxon for financially backing studies that cast doubt on climate change. People with the facts on their side don’t need to shut down the argument.

3) Sound science needs sound data. But climate data is often “adjusted.”  If a weather station located, say, in Nassau County, New York, was put there in 1925 and is still yielding data today, that data has to reflect changing conditions at that site. In 1925 it might have been in the middle of a potato field. In 2016, while standing on the exact same spot, it’s now behind a suburban strip mall, surrounded by tarmac and twenty feet from the kitchen exhaust fan of a Chinese restaurant. The opportunities to manipulate data rather than adjust it (not to mention the guesswork involved in even honest adjustment) are legion. And climate scientists have been caught red-handed manipulating it and otherwise trying to affect the public perception by dishonest means. People with the facts on their side don’t need to fudge them.

4) Who benefits? When a body is discovered in the library, à la Agatha Christie, the first thing the police want to know is who benefits from that person’s death? So, let’s assume for a moment that anthropogenic climate change is indeed a grave and present threat to civilization. Who benefits from that realization? The answer primarily is two groups. The first group is made up of politicians. Such a crisis could only be handled by government at the highest levels, greatly increasing the power of government over the lives of citizens. And, as James Madison explained, “Men love power.” For politicians, that goes double. That’s why Democrats, such as Senator Whitehouse and the twenty state attorneys general, love the idea of climate change. Democrats are the party of government. They favor anything that increases the power of government.

The second group is made up of climate scientists. If politicians need to cope with a crisis, they’ll need expert advice. And getting to whisper in the ears of the powerful is itself a potent form of power. Also, of course, government agencies such as the EPA fund most climate research and it is in the self-interest of EPA bureaucrats to advance the idea of climate change. Studies that might do so are thus favored. So the scientists have a powerful self-interest in aligning with the government in order to obtain research grants.

5) Chicken Little doesn’t act like he believes the sky is falling. When the UN held a climate conference in Bali in 2007, attendees flew in on so many private jets that many had to be parked at an airport on next-door Java. These conferences, by the way, never take place in, say, Cleveland. They are always in out-of-the-way places, such as Bali, that anyone would be happy to visit on someone else’s nickel. Al Gore a few years ago was embarrassed to have it publically revealed that his monthly electric bill was routinely over $1,000 (and in Nashville, Tennessee, which enjoys very low rates, thanks to TVA). Leonardo DiCaprio usually flies by private jet. I imagine that that is how he arrived in New York last Friday in order to tell the masses of the sacrifices they must make in their life styles in order to save the planet. He was recently seen frolicking in Brazil on a 470-foot yacht.

As Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit says, “I’ll believe there’s a climate crisis when the people who tell me there’s a climate crisis start acting like there’s a climate crisis.” Until then, I’ll believe that “climate change” has little to do with science and much to do with aggrandizing political power.


United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Testimony of Major General (Retired) Robert Scales April 13, 2016

 Mr. Chairman, thank you very much for inviting me to testify before the Committee on the relationship between climate change and war.

The Administration’s passion to connect climate change to war is an example of faulty theories that rely for relevance on politically correct imaginings rather than established historical precedent or a learned understanding of war.

The theories linking climate change to war come from a larger body of political thought that ascribes human conflict to “Global Trends”. Advocates of the Global Trends theory argue that environmental scourges such as diminishing water supplies, urbanization and the AIDS/HIV epidemic shape the course of human conflict.

Lately, thanks to legitimacy provided by the Obama Administration, climate change has become the most prominent of all the global trends that seek to link global misfortunes to war. President Obama codified his embrace of this particular global trend during his graduation address at the Coast Guard Academy in 2015: “So I’m here today to say that climate change constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate risk to our national security.”

It’s interesting to note the hypocrisy within the scientific communities that argue for a connection between climate change and national security. Scientists generally agree on the long-term consequences of global warming. Radical environmentalists delight in excoriating the so-called “junk science” espoused by climate change deniers.

But they are less than enthusiastic in questioning the “junk social science” that environmentalists and their Beltway fellow travellers use to connect climate change to war.

Of course not all theories from Global Trends activists are off the mark. They have a legitimate argument when they warn of the consequences of pandemics on the course of warfare. The Greek historian Thucydides recounts that the great Athens plague of 430 BCE resulted in the retreat of the Athenian army and navy as well as the death of the great Greek military leader Pericles. The Byzantium emperor Justinian’s ambition to expand his empire to the West was shattered by the horrific Plague of 540 AD. A small band of Spanish conquistadors conquered all of central and south America in just few short decades because their conquests were preceded by Western diseases they carried with them from Europe.

 However, no historical evidence exists that makes a “cause and effect” argument linking war to rising global temperatures. Where does the Administration get their facts about climate change and war? First, they contend that a warming planet causes drought, which leads to mass migration away from areas of creeping desertification.

To be sure rising temperatures combined with over grazing in places like central Africa have caused displacement of peoples. But the misery of these peoples leads to, well, misery, not war. Tribes striving to exist in these often horrific environmental conditions have little energy left over to declare war against a tribal neighbor.

The nations of Central Africa are in the grip of conflicts started by Boko Haram in Nigeria and al Shabaab in Somalia. But these transnational terrorists are motivated to kill by the factors that have always caused nations (or entities masquerading as nations) to start wars. These factors are timeless and immutable. First of course is hatred induced by fear of alien cultures, religions, ideologies, as well as social and racial differences.

The common spark for all wars is jealousy and greed amplified by centuries-long animosities and political ambitions. The catalyst for war is the ignorance of leaders that leads them to misjudge. Humans start wars believing they will be profitable, short, glorious and bloodless. These truths never change.

None are affected in the least by air temperature. But the myth of climate change as an inducement to war continues to curry favor among Washington elites.

One source for connecting war to temperature comes from the political closeness between environmentalists and the anti war movement. Their logic goes like this: “global warming is bad. Wars are bad. Therefore they must be connected.”

Remember, prior to the 1991 Gulf War, environmentalists warned of a decade of global cooling that would come from burning Kuwaiti oil fields. More recently environmental radicals argued against bombing ISIS oil trucks fearing the environmental consequences. Sadly those in the Administration who lobbied against striking a legitimate military target because of imagined environmental damage caused by these strikes may, in all likelihood, have sustained ISIS by refusing to interdict their richest source of income.

The point is that in today’s wars politically correct theories when inserted into a battle plan might well extend wars needlessly and get soldiers killed.

More Here

Conservative groups target ozone law in push for rule's rollback

A coalition of 60 conservative groups is asking lawmakers to overturn the Obama administration’s new ozone pollution rule and change the law under which it was written.

The bill the groups endorse, the Ozone Standards Implementation Act, would for the first time require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to consider the costs of tightening the ozone standards when it proposes such restrictions.

It would also push back deadlines for new standards and have the EPA consider new ozone rules every 10 years instead of every 5 years.

“The ozone regulation places a tremendous burden on communities across America,” the groups wrote to the heads of the House and Senate committees with jurisdiction over the EPA.

“The result of a nonattainment designation can be disastrous and bring economic activity to a halt. Local governments risk losing federal highway funds. Oil and gas operations, with the royalty and tax revenue they bring, may cease. Manufacturers may be forced to relocate or shut down, destroying jobs in the process,” they wrote.

The coalition includes some big names such as Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks, along with state and local groups and others with smaller footprints.

Last year’s ozone regulation is extremely unpopular among conservatives, Republicans, the fossil fuel industry and many business interests.

It lowered the allowable ambient ozone concentration to 70 parts per billion from the previous 75 parts per billion. Businesses fear that complying with the standard could lead states to restrict manufacturing, power generation and other activities that generate pollutants that create ozone.

The EPA and its allies in the environmental and public health communities counter that the public health benefits, including better respiratory health resulting from reduced pollution, greatly outweigh the $1.4 billion in projected costs.


How Washington Politicians Wasted Billions Trying to ‘Invest in Our Future’

The federal government has wasted billions on energy projects promising to usher in a new energy future.

All Washington can do is play favorites when picking energy options (think Solyndra).

It does this through providing grants, loans, loan guarantees, mandates (like the use of biofuels), and tax subsidies to specific energy technologies—to only name of a few.

Another way in which the government intervenes in the energy market is the annual budget of the Department of Energy. Programs within the Department of Energy supposedly recognize that there’s great potential for wind, solar, fusion, geothermal, biofuels, carbon capturing technology for coal, and much more. These energy sources and technologies themselves may very well be worthy of investment, but that’s not the point. The problem is the government meddling in what is clearly not its role.

The mantra from proponents of government spending on energy is generally the same. To borrow from President Barack Obama, “Rather than subsidize the past, we should invest in the future.”

Half of that statement is correct. Taxpayers shouldn’t subsidize the past. Nor should they “invest” (read: subsidize) in the future. In fact, that’s why the market has investors: to take chances, using their own money, on promising new endeavors. From basic research to full-scale commercialization for any energy technology, every step of the way should be driven by the private sector.

Free enterprise will spur the next energy revolution, just as it has the latest oil and gas revolution that’s lowering the cost of living for Americans. Competition will provide incremental improvements in energy, for conventional natural resources and for renewable technologies.

As energy prices rise and fall, markets respond accordingly. Higher prices at the pump, for instance, incentivize companies to extract more oil and invest in technologies to produce the oil more cheaply and efficiently. Higher prices encourage exploration into alternative power sources for vehicles, whether it is biofuels, batteries, natural gas, or something entirely different.

Markets shift to more efficient and cost-competitive technologies when they make economic sense and meet consumer preferences. In the 1800s, wood was the dominant energy source for families because it was abundant and convenient. Over time, coal replaced wood because it provided more heat per pound and was easier to store and to transport.

Furthermore, the evolution of rail power from steam to diesel occurred even faster because the transition significantly reduced costs and increased productivity. Though legislation encouraged the use of diesel locomotives on a small scale, the dramatic shift mostly happened because of market forces. The cost-effectiveness and increased productivity of diesel-powered trains largely eradicated the use of steam locomotives in just over two decades.

The reality is that Washington isn’t needed to drive energy innovation, which is a difficult pill to swallow for some politicians and special interests. Because those are the folks who want to keep the money flowing to their preferred energy sources because they stand to benefit.

It’s more difficult for politicians to take credit for the successes guided by the invisible hand. But the free market will actually trigger successful investments and reward disruptive technologies, providing more choice and better options for families.

On the surface, their reasons for government funding energy projects may sound appealing to the public. For years, policymakers stressed the need to develop alternative energy sources to reduce dependence on foreign energy sources. Lately, the justification for Department of Energy spending is that America needs to combat global warming, reduce greenhouse gas emission, and be a leader in green tech.

But intentions and results are two very different things. Decades of the federal government trying to commercialize specific energy technologies have left Americans with nothing more than empty promises and squandered money.

Instead of continuing to fund energy programs almost without hesitation, policymakers should trust that the market will determine the true value of potentially innovative technologies. We know what works and what doesn’t. It’s time for Congress to stop dumping money into failed programs and expecting different results. Instead, they should live by this mantra:

A penny saved is a penny earned and a taxpayer dollar spent on energy is a taxpayer dollar wasted.


Dept. of Energy Spends $90M Towards 3 Commercial Biofuels Plants

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has announced it’s spending $90 million in taxpayer dollars to advance their goal of producing at least three biofuel commercial plants over the next dozen years.

“The production of biofuels from sustainable, non-food, domestic biomass resources is an important strategy to meet the Administration’s goals to reduce carbon emissions and our dependence on imported oil,” a DOE release says.

“Today’s funding opportunity announcement will advance the Department’s goal of producing at least three total pioneer commercial plants over the next twelve years.”

Lynn Orr, DOE’s Undersecretary of Science and Energy says, “This funding opportunity will support companies that are working to advance current technologies and help them overcome existing challenges in bioenergy so the industry can meet its full potential.”

The $90 million is meant to assist in the construction of bioenergy infrastructure to integrate pretreatment, process, and convergence technologies.

Biorefineries convert plant and algal materials used to derive fuel.

The DOE press release states that the U.S. could produce 1 billion tons of biomass that could, “be used to fuel vehicles, heat homes and replace everyday materials such as plastic — all while potentially displacing over 25 percent of U.S. petroleum use and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 550 million tons.”


Australia had larger extreme weather events in the distant past

More flooding and longer droughts.  Pesky for the Warmists as CO2 was LOWER at that time (the last 1,000 years)

Australia is systematically underestimating its drought and flood risk because weather records do not capture the full extent of rainfall variability, according to our new research.

Our study, published today in the journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, uses Antarctic ice core data to reconstruct rainfall for the past 1,000 years for catchments in eastern Australia.

The results show that instrumental rainfall records – available for the past 100 years at best, depending on location – do not represent the full range of abnormally wet and dry periods that have occurred over the centuries.

In other words, significantly longer and more frequent wet and dry periods were experienced in the pre-instrumental period (that is, before the 20th century) compared with the period over which records have been kept.

Reconstructing prehistoric rainfall

There is no direct indicator of rainfall patterns for Australia before weather observations began. But, strange as it may sound, there is a link between eastern Australian rainfall and the summer deposition of sea salt in Antarctic ice. This allowed us to deduce rainfall levels by studying ice cores drilled from Law Dome, a small coastal ice cap in East Antarctica.

It might sound strange, but there’s a direct link between Antarctic ice and Australia’s rainfall patterns.

How can sea salt deposits in an Antarctic ice core possibly be related to rainfall thousands of kilometres away in Australia? It is because the processes associated with rainfall variability in eastern Australia – such as the El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO), as well as other ocean cycles like the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) and the Southern Annular Mode (SAM) – are also responsible for variations in the wind and circulation patterns that cause sea salt to be deposited in East Antarctica (as outlined in our previous research).

By studying an ice record spanning 1,013 years, our results reveal a clear story of wetter wet periods and drier dry periods than is evident in Australia’s much shorter instrumental weather record.

For example, in the Williams River catchment, which provides water for the Newcastle region of New South Wales, our results showed that the longest dry periods lasted up to 12 years. In contrast, the longest dry spell since 1900 lasted just eight years.

Among wet periods, the difference was even more pronounced. The longest unusually wet spell in our ice record lasted 39 years – almost five times longer than the post-1900 maximum of eight years.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


11 May, 2016

Arctic ice area: safely higher in 2016 than in 2007

Lubos Motl

The ongoing El Niño is rapidly weakening and may be replaced by a La Niña in the second half of the year. However, it's been the strongest El Niño on the record – slightly beating the 1997-1998 El Niño that used to be known as the "El Niño of the century".

This fact has some correlation with the temperatures that were elevated. Although it's always about hundredths of a Celsius degree, January, February, and March were the warmest months with those names on the RSS AMSU satellite record. However, April 2016 was already cooler than April 1998 again.

What about the Arctic ice? Left-wing "science" media such as The Guardian and The Pig were impressing us with the claim that the Arctic ice has been at record lows for several months.

However, this isn't the case at all. Take The Pig's favorite Arctic graph page. You will see several graphs where 2016 looks like the "lowest sea ice" year. However, it's only the lowest one in comparison with several recent years.

If you look at any of the graphs that goes back at least to 2007, you will see that 2007 – the year when Al Gore's global warming influence could be peaking – saw a significantly lower Arctic sea ice area than 2016 so far. The difference is not "significant" to the extent that a sane person would care about it – the differences are tiny in any "absolute" sense. But these 2007-2016 differences are larger than the differences between 2016 and many recent years.

Up to the early April, you may simply see very clearly that 2007 saw less ice than 2016. There is at least one other graph on the Pig's page where you can go back at least a decade and see that 2007 had less ice than 2016. 2007 was really about "3 standard deviations" below the the average; 2016 is only about "2 standard deviations" below the average. It's a different league. You may also find a not really famous Japanese JAXA where a different definition of the sea ice area is used and 2015, 2016 are record holders – but the difference from years such as 2007 is much smaller than in the datasets where 2007 had the record low sea ice area.

You may remember that there were pretty cool years such as 2008 and 2009 when many climate skeptics loved to talk about the weather. ;-) So they were logically following after some warmer years. 2005 was warm and 2006, 2007 were cooler but the ice tends (and ice losses tend) to accumulate which is why the minima in 2007 were natural.

So the claims about the new records of Arctic sea ice in early 2016 are simply falsehoods. Incidentally, the Antarctic sea ice is near the normal levels – the values are a very good approximation of the average – so the alarmists don't talk about the Antarctica at all. You could have predicted it – they don't have the integrity to talk about any data fairly. But in the case of the Arctic ice, they were simply lying to our face.

The Pig has also talked about the insufferable heat in the Arctic and the polar bears that are melting away. The Inuit tribes live there, know what's going on, and they say that the polar bears are doing very well – which is why the Inuit feel really good when they hunt for them.

But can you appreciate the incredible absurdity of this guy's talking about the insufferable heat in the Arctic? This guy lives in New Mexico, basically a desert. Look at the climate data for Las Cruces, New Mexico, where he lives (the second largest town in NM). The record highs for the 12 months of the year are 26, 30, 32, 36, 40 (May), 43, 43, 41, 39, 35, 31, and 26 degrees Celsius. He not only lives in that hot hell but happily floods the Internet with garbage. And he has the guts to say that the Arctic has become insufferably hot. What doesn't this piece of pork evaporate if he lives in conditions that are some 30 °C warmer than the "insufferable heat"?

The idiocy of this global warming propaganda is just absolutely incredible.


Crook Cook's Identity Fraud

This is from last year but is relevant to my recent posts about the crook Cook

Cartoonist and professional scrawler UNSkeptical UNScience - SS's John Cook has been fraudulently using Luboš Motl's identity.

Luboš Motl is a Czech theoretical physicist by training who was an assistant Professor at Harvard University from 2004 to 2007. His scientific publications are focused on string theory.
Luboš writes a blog called The Reference Frame (TRF).

On TRF, Luboš writes of John Cook:

"John Cook is the founder of one of the world's most famous "Sky Is Falling" websites about global warming, SkepticalScience.COM. The name of the web wants to express the point that the climate skeptics shouldn't even be allowed to use the term "skeptics".

They only deserve expletives while the "true skeptics" are the champions of panic such as Cook himself. He is a typical example of the alarmist "grassroots movement" who has no relevant education (his top academic achievement is to have been a "former student" – in other words, a dropout) and no significant intelligence but whose persistent activism – in combination with the pathologically corrupt atmosphere in many institutions that favor "a certain kind of views" – has allowed him to become something like an "honorary scientist" and to have earned a huge amount of money, too"

Anthony Watts writes:

"If it wasn’t enough that John Cook dresses himself up as a Nazi in his SkS uniform on his forum, now we have him caught in what looks to be identity theft of a well known scientist. 

This isn’t a brush away issue that he can ignore, as Dr. Lubos Motl found out yesterday, John Cook has been using the name of Dr. Lubos Motl to post comments that Dr. Motl has NOT written"

Even some of his partners in crime object to his use of Luboš' identity: 

Tim Curtis: would you please stop posting as Lubos Motl. There is reason to doubt his sanity, so I don’t like seeing his name. Further, it is his name, and therefore one you are not entitled to use. …

Rob Honeycutt: John… You freak me out every time Lubos Motl’s name pops up! …

John Cook: Sorry about the Lubos thing. Was posting some Lubos comments for the UWA experiment and forgot to log back in as John Cook.

Cook admits that he has used another scientist's identity commenting on the University of Western Australia. (UWA)

Anthony Watts continues:

What sort of “experiment” was John Cook running by stealing the identity of Dr. Lubos Motl, and writing comments under his name?
Cook is a man who has co-authored two papers about how climate skeptics are not to be trusted because in essence, “they are crazy conspiracy theorists”. Yet, John Cook, now of the University of Queensland after leaving his connections at UWA, has so little moral integrity that he’ll post comments on his own website (the SkS forum, see below) as a skeptical scientist, such as Dr. Lubos Motl?

Who else has John Cook impersonated? Has he encouraged his team to do this? These are valid questions that need answers.
How long can the University of Queensland (UQ) continue to employ this sham scientist?


Ontario serves as a good lesson for penalties of forsaking coal

I would like to offer my American friends a cautionary tale of what will happen if environmentalists succeed in shutting down your coal-fired power plants.

Ontario was once an industrial powerhouse and the home of thousands upon thousands of well-paid manufacturing jobs. But the province lost at least 300,000 manufacturing jobs in the last 15 years when companies either went bankrupt or left Ontario.

This happened largely because our electricity prices have increased 318 percent since 2002, now giving us the highest rates in North America. A major reason for this staggering rise is that, in the name of “stopping climate change,” we shut down all of our inexpensive coal plants, which, in 2002, provided about 25 percent of our electricity.

Things will be even worse for the U.S. if Hillary Clinton becomes president and continues President Obama’s climate policies. After all, the U.S. gets 37 percent of its power from coal (69 percent in Ohio).

Were it known to be true that our carbon dioxide emissions are causing serious climate problems, then perhaps it could be argued that such a sacrifice would be worthwhile. But the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change lists thousands of peer-reviewed science papers that show that much of what we thought we knew about climate is wrong or highly debatable.

University of Western Ontario applied mathematician Dr. Chris Essex, an expert in the mathematical models that are the basis of the climate scare, explains, “Climate is one of the most challenging open problems in modern science. Some knowledgeable scientists believe that the climate problem can never be solved.”

Ontarians were too frightened of climate activists to oppose the plan to end coal-fired power generation. As a consequence, we are now dependent on the charity of more wealthy Canadian provinces to survive. Who will bail out the U.S. if you follow our tragic example?


Al Gore: TV News on Extreme Weather ‘Like a Nature Hike Through Book of Revelation’

Or like a hike through his imagination.  EVERYTHING is caused by Global Warming, it appears

Former Vice President Al Gore said on Thursday that the news reports of extreme weather, which he believes is caused by climate change, is like the end days described in the Bible’s New Testament’s Book of Revelation.

“The climate-related extreme weather events – and I won’t go through all of them – but every night on the television news now is like a nature hike through the Book of Revelation,” Gore said at the Climate Action 2016 summit in Washington, D.C.

Gore was interviewed by Audrey Choi, CEO of the Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing, who also worked with Gore in the Clinton administration and now works with the Obama administration as a member of the U.S. Community Development Advisory Board.

Choi said that the people evacuated in the Houston, Texas, area recently because of flood waters were the “first climate refugees domestically.”

“We just relocated our first climate refugees, yes, in Houston, Texas two weeks ago,” Gore said, adding that the rainfall in that state equaled “3 ½ days of full flow of Niagara Falls.

Whether the people in Texas were the first of what environmental activists call “climate refugees” may be debatable based on news reports.

In an article posted on Friday on the RT Network website, a Native American tribe living on an island off the coast of Louisiana are the nation’s “first climate refugees.”

The L.A. Times reported in January that Alaskans living in the remote village of Newtok “are among our country’s first climate refugees.”

Gore also referenced the evacuation of people in Alberta, Canada, because of wildfires as victims of extreme weather and then credited something other than climate change for causing this and other similar events.

‘Mother Nature turns out to be more persuasive than any of us,” Gore said. “The laws of physics are a little bit hard to deny.”

In the summit’s program, Gore’s slot was entitled: “Climate Change; A Convenient Truth.”


OMB Director on Climate Change: ‘When Surging Seas Storm Onto Wall Street That Stifles Commerce'

Should a fantasist be in charge of the OMB?

Shaun Donovan, the director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Barack Obama, said on Friday that the world’s commerce will be harmed when climate change causes the nation’s financial center to be flooded and transportation to come to a halt.

“When the surging seas storm onto Wall Street that stifles commerce globally,” Donovan said at the Climate Action 2016 summit in Washington, D.C.

“When infrastructure buckles, U.S. airports or seaports shut down, we all get stuck,” Donovan said.

Donovan also said that crop damage from a heat wave in Russia in 2010 threatened global “food security” and that climate change is responsible for “political unrest,” including in Syria.

“In Syria, drought contributed to mass migration and urban unrest,” he said.

Donovan said he is “proud” the Obama administration has committed $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund, which is part of the United Nation’s framework.

According to its website, the fund “was established with a mission to advance the goal of keeping the temperature increase on our home planet below 2 degrees Celsius.”

As reported earlier, Republican lawmakers are strongly opposed to using taxpayer funds to pay for climate change programs abroad.  Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) called the fund a “handout to foreign bureaucrats” that has not been approved by Congress.

“It appears to be the latest example of the administration going around Congress because the American people don’t really support what the president is doing with this initiative,” Barrasso said at a Senate Foreign Relations Committee meeting in March.


Navy, Air Force share concerns about wind turbines

The Naval Air Station at Corpus Christi, Texas, is faced with the same dilemma that the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station (NFARS) confronts: What impact will at least 70 proposed 620-foot-high industrial wind turbines have on military flight operations?

“I do feel like one day we’re going to wake up surrounded by wind farms in South Texas significantly impacting the mission [of the Naval Air Station] in a negative way,” Capt. Christopher Misner, commanding officer of Naval Air Station Kingsville, said during a Texas Senate Committee on Veteran Affairs and Military Installations hearing in April.

Rear Admiral Dell D. Bull, chief of naval air training, is quoted as saying he’s unsure if naval air operations can safely coexist with industrial wind turbines, “and I don’t know how anyone can say otherwise.”

Similar concerns have been raised about plans by Apex Clean Energy to construct massive industrial wind turbines in the Town of Somerset in Niagara County and the Town of Yates in Orleans County.

Three former high-ranking Air Force officers who served at NFARS recently wrote to Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and other state officials. They said that the presence of the massive structures “will inject a major encroachment into the military operating area around the air base, resulting in a major threat to NFARS when the next Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) recommendations are made, possibly as soon as 2017.”

The Cuomo administration is no doubt examining this “green energy” project very closely. The last thing we need to do is to give the next BRAC any reason to consider base closure in Niagara Falls, putting 3,200 jobs at risk. Apex says its project will lead to only 10 permanent jobs.

In Texas, the Navy is now preparing a study to determine the impact industrial wind turbines will have on flight training. With so many towering structures located in Navy operational areas, pilots will have few options for emergency landings and experts said the turbines will negatively impact radar to the point that air traffic controllers will lose the location of aircraft.

Sen. Donna Campbell, a Texas state senator and the committee’s chairwoman, said she won’t hesitate to take action if military flight training is jeopardized by the wind turbines.

We certainly don’t want that in Somerset and Yates, either.

New York State can’t allow the installation of these wind turbines to threaten Air Force pilot safety, and Cuomo can’t run the risk of giving the base closing commission any reason to shut down NFARS. Lives are at risk; jobs are at risk; the future of the air base is at risk.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


10 May, 2016

Extreme weather events have NOT become more frequent in recent times

Warmists never tire of claiming that global warming is causing more extreme weather events, particularly of the windy variety.  Skeptics in turn  point to statistics showing (for instance) that hurricane landfalls on the USA have in fact been much reduced in the last 10 or so years. 

The authors below however rightly argue that if you are going to detect trends, you need as long a time series as possible.  What has happened over the last 10 or 20 years may not be typical.  So they go back to 1872 to get their data for analysis. And they devise methods of statistical analysis that take account of the relative rarity of such events. 

So they divide their data into two halves, an early half and a later half.  And they find that there has been no change in the frequency of extreme events between the first half and the second half.  From 1872 to 2011, there was no  change in the frequency of extreme weather events

The prophecy that global warming would bring on more extreme weather events was always on fairly shaky theoretical ground  anyway.

The opening clause in their Abstract below would have been needed to get their article published

Need for Caution in Interpreting Extreme Weather Statistics

Prashant D. Sardeshmukh and Gilbert P. Compo


Given the reality of anthropogenic global warming, it is tempting to seek an anthropogenic component in any recent change in the statistics of extreme weather. This paper cautions that such efforts may, however, lead to wrong conclusions if the distinctively skewed and heavy-tailed aspects of the probability distributions of daily weather anomalies are ignored or misrepresented. Departures of several standard deviations from the mean, although rare, are far more common in such a distinctively non-Gaussian world than they are in a Gaussian world. This further complicates the problem of detecting changes in tail probabilities from historical records of limited length and accuracy.

A possible solution is to exploit the fact that the salient non-Gaussian features of the observed distributions are captured by so-called stochastically generated skewed (SGS) distributions that include Gaussian distributions as special cases. SGS distributions are associated with damped linear Markov processes perturbed by asymmetric stochastic noise and as such represent the simplest physically based prototypes of the observed distributions. The tails of SGS distributions can also be directly linked to generalized extreme value (GEV) and generalized Pareto (GP) distributions. The Markov process model can be used to provide rigorous confidence intervals and to investigate temporal persistence statistics. The procedure is illustrated for assessing changes in the observed distributions of daily wintertime indices of large-scale atmospheric variability in the North Atlantic and North Pacific sectors over the period 1872–2011. No significant changes in these indices are found from the first to the second half of the period.


An Inconvenient Truth: Liberal Climate Inquisition Can’t Explain Past Temperature Changes

In the week prior to the administration signing what should constitute an international climate treaty, one think tank, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, was subpoenaed for casting doubt on the agreement’s associated science of climate catastrophe.

As disturbing as such thuggery from state attorneys general would be in any case, the premise of the subpoena is faulty. The Competitive Enterprise Institute did not cast doubt on the dubious climate science. The actual data cast the doubt. The think tank and others have simply pointed out what the data show.

It looks like thoughtcrime has now moved from George Orwell’s novel “1984” to the twisted reality of our judicial system. Pointing out facts should never be a real crime.

The Heritage Foundation’s new Paris-bubble-popping science summary is also a case of letting the numbers tell a story. A story many never hear in the media-hyped spectacle that is international climate policy.DS-climate-science-termperatures-700

For instance, the chart above shows reconstructed average world temperature data for the past 500,000 years. Depending on the magnification and size of your monitor, each pencil dot would span something on the order of 1,000 years. The myriad 10-degree Celsius temperature flips all happened before man-made carbon dioxide could have had any impact—the final temperature spike started at the end of the last ice age.

Now see if you can follow this: The “science thought police” insist that even though none of the temperature variations for the first 499,950 years had anything to do with human activity, virtually none of the temperature increases of the past 50 years had anything to do with nature. Got it?

A question some overzealous attorneys general might be asking right now is, “Where did this ‘denier’ data come from?” The answer is: the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center website (to be very clear, it is part of the federal government).

If those who merely point to data that are inconsistent with an imminent climate crisis are thought criminals, how much more subpoena worthy would be those who actually created the data? This expands the thoughtcrime conspiracy to an entirely new set of perps.

Should the hyperventilating attorneys general subpoena the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in its entirety or just the researchers? If donors to think tanks are subpoenaed simply because the think tanks pointed to this data, should not the U.S. Treasury be subpoenaed for actually funding these doubt-creating data?

In any event, it seems disingenuous to wave off huge past temperature changes as entirely natural while branding as science-denying fraudsters those who assert that natural forces are likely still to be playing a significant role. This is a problem for the U.N. Climate Agreement and its signers.

If natural forces have played a significant role in the moderate and unsteady temperature increases of the past 60 years, then what’s the climate hysteria about? If there is no need for hysteria, there is no need for the Paris climate agreement.


A Few Facts For Climate Alarmists Waging War Against Astrophysicist Willie Soon

Dr. Willie Soon is an astrophysicist in the Solar, Stellar and Planetary Sciences Division of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He began as a post-doctoral fellow in 1991 and took his scientist position in 1997. His subsequent career is a textbook example of speaking truth to power and bravely facing the consequences.

Dr. Soon produced an important series of astrophysics papers on the sun-climate connection beginning in 1994 and received positive discussion in the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s second and third assessment reports (1996 and 2001). In that era, the IPCC still admitted uncertainties about human influence, despite green NGO pressure and U.S. State Department insistence on finding a “smoking gun” in weak data.

Even Bert Bolin, co-creator and first chairman of the IPCC (1988-1997), deplored the denial of uncertainty he saw rising. In his 2007 History of the Science and Politics of Climate Change (page 112), Bolin wrote, “It was non-governmental groups of environmentalists, supported by the mass media who were the ones exaggerating the conclusions that had been carefully formulated by the IPCC.” In 1997 Bolin went so far as to tell the Associated Press, “Global warming is not something you can ‘prove.’ You try to collect evidence and thereby a picture emerges.”

Dr. Soon’s study of solar influence on climate behavior made him a target for alarmists, but he had defenders. In 2013, the Boston Globe acknowledged his guts and sound science with a quote from iconic science leader, Freeman Dyson: “The whole point of science is to question accepted dogmas. For that reason, I respect Willie Soon as a good scientist and a courageous citizen.”

In February of 2015, Greenpeace agent Kert Davies, a vocal critic since 1997, falsely accused Dr. Soon of wrongfully taking fossil-fuel company grants by failing to disclose “conflicts of interest” to an academic journal. The journal’s editors and the Smithsonian Institution found no violation of their disclosure or conflict of interest rules. However, the Greenpeace accusation caused a clamor around the world as lazy liberal reporters repeated it for major media with no fact-checking for accuracy.

The Greenpeace ruckus brought high-level Obama administration pressure on the Harvard-Smithsonian Center to silence climate skeptics – Vice President Joe Biden is a member of Smithsonian’s Board of Regents. The Institution responded with an elaborate new Directive on Standards of Conduct that forced its employees to wade through bureaucratic rules replete with an Ethics Counselor and a “Loyalty to the Smithsonian” clause of a sort not seen since the McCarthy Red Scare.

The Institution announced an Inspector General investigation of Soon, combing his emails and announcing that he had broken no rules. That seriously stung the NGO-Media-Politician coalition, which launched more attacks.

Ten days apart in the Spring of 2016, two outlets published stories scurrilously demonizing Dr. Soon. Both articles were long on bias and bogus claims but short on facts. The two activist/writers, David Hasemyer of the controversial Rockefeller-funded InsideClimateNews and Paul Basken of the for-profit Delaware corporation, The Chronicle of Higher Education, seem to have forgotten journalistic ethics and the facts.

Basken’s March 25 item, “A Year After a Climate-Change Controversy, Smithsonian and Journals Still Seek Balance on Disclosure Rules,” bemoans the fact that last year’s load of Greenpeace false accusations hadn’t caused the Institution to impose harsh enough rules to get rid of all scientists with climate skeptic views. Any fact checking didn’t show.

Hasemyer’s April 5, 2016 piece, “Smithsonian Gives Nod to More ‘Dark Money’ Funding for Willie Soon,” bewails the fact that Soon’s employer didn’t follow their playbook but approved a $65,000 grant from the non-profit Donors Trust, which is despised by greens because it uses anonymous “donor-advised-funds.” Such “dark money” grants are an IRS-approved shield pioneered decades ago by the far-left Tides Foundation for its $1.1 billion worth of grants to radicals, much of it “dark,” which Hasemyer didn’t seem to recall.

Hasemyer also neglected to note that even if Donors Trust’s “dark” grant came from ExxonMobil Foundation, the fossil-fuel philanthropy also gave universities $64,674,989; museums $2,771,150; the Red Cross $2,549,434; the Conservation Fund, Nature Conservancy and similar groups $1,210,000; Habitat for Humanity $798,000, Ducks Unlimited, $402,000 and many more from 1998 to 2014 according to IRS records. Will they be demonized as shills too?

Neither Hasemyer nor Basken displayed any familiarity with what scientists have to go through in order to do science in the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics or how it works, which is the bedrock of sound, ethical journalism on the topic.

The Center combines the Harvard College Observatory and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory under a single director to pursue studies of the universe. It is comprised of six divisions, and Dr. Soon is listed in the Solar, Stellar, and Planetary Sciences (SSP) Division.

About one-third of the Center’s scientists, including Willie Soon, are employed in what are called “Smithsonian Trust positions.” These positions are held mostly by PhD specialists, unlike Federal civil service. According to the Smithsonian Employee Handbook, Federal position paychecks are paid from the Smithsonian’s annual Federal appropriation and Trust position paychecks are paid from the Smithsonian’s Trust Fund. Scientists in Trust positions are paid by the hour with a Smithsonian paycheck.

Scientists in Trust positions must find donors who will give the Smithsonian grants that pay for the science. An employee information document states, “Obtaining competitive funding is an important part of the scientists’ jobs and a measure of their career success.” The grants always go directly to the Smithsonian for the science project with a 30 to 40 percent cut off the top for the Institution’s management and overhead, but never go directly to the scientist. Media attacks on Dr. Soon misrepresenting his success at this duty as nefarious are either ignorant or disingenuous.

Scientists in Trust positions must follow exacting procedures in order to obtain grants for their science according to the rules in the elaborate Contract and Grant Administration document.

The prescribed steps most relevant to Dr. Soon’s position are: First, the scientists must prepare a draft of their proposed scientific project or work. The draft then goes for pre-approval to the Director’s Office, held since 2004 by distinguished astronomer Charles Alcock. The scientists must give the Director suggestions for potential funders, but all decisions are the Director’s.

If the Director approves the draft proposal, he signs it and gives it to the Grant Office, which prepares the presentation package, including a budget, the approved proposal, and a cover letter formally requesting a grant. The Director signs the cover letter and the grant officer sends it to the potential donor.

The donor replies to the Director saying yes or no. If yes, the reply may contain a pledge to be paid when invoiced by the Center or direct payment to Smithsonian, which handles all of the Center’s money. The scientist who performs the project may not know and has no need to know who gave the grant.

When scientists perform an “off the clock” (unpaid) study to be published in a peer-reviewed journal and pays for it out of personal funds, as Willie Soon has on numerous occasions over the years, all Smithsonian approvals and checkpoints must still be passed. Claims that Dr. Soon has pocketed any off-the-clock grant money have all been shown false.

Writers who accuse Dr. Soon of wrongdoing despite firm evidence to the contrary are violating the Code of Ethics of the Society of Professional Journalists, which states, among many other points: “Ethical journalism should be accurate and fair. Journalists should examine the ways their values and experiences may shape their reporting. Journalists should support the open and civil exchange of views, even views they find repugnant.”

The hostile coverage attacking Dr. Soon could hardly be considered ethical journalism by these professional standards. The writers and publishers of such unethical journalism should be brought to account.


Feds Offer $25 Million in Grants for Solar Energy Projects; Solar Has Increased ‘23-Fold’ Under Obama

The U.S. Department of Energy announced on Monday that $25 million in grant funding is available for solar power projects through the “Enabling Extreme Real-Time Grid Integration of Solar Energy (ENERGISE) effort.

The money will be awarded to software developers, solar companies and utilities to “accelerate the integration of solar energy into the grid.”

“Since President Obama took office, the amount of solar power installed in the U.S. has increased 23-fold—from 1.2 gigawatts in 2008 to an estimated 27.4 gigawatts in 2015, with one million systems now in operation,” the announcement said.

DOE acknowledged the challenge of “balancing” solar with “traditional utility generation,” but said this funding “will help support companies working to meet that challenge,” although the way in which this will be done is not explained.

“Our ongoing grid modernization work will help accelerate the widespread adoption of the clean energy resources that will define our low-carbon future,” Lynn Orr, Energy Department under secretary for science and energy, said in a statement. “This funding will help that mission by supporting industry partners working to integrate, store, and deploy solar energy throughout our electric grid.

“In doing so, we hope to drive down costs and encourage even more American homeowners and businesses to install solar systems,” Orr said.

The funding announcement is part of the Obama administration’s ongoing effort to promote solar energy while at the same time putting more regulations in place for other traditional energy resources, despite the federal Energy Information Administration statistics that show only 10 percent of energy was generated by renewable sources like solar in the U.S. in 2014, while petroleum (35 percent), natural gas (28 percent) and coal (18 percent) supply the most energy in the United States.

“The SunShot Initiative, which is managed by DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), will oversee the projects associated with this funding opportunity,” the announcement said, noting that SunShot is a collaborative national effort launched in 2011 that “aggressively drives innovation to make solar energy cost competitive – without subsidies – with traditional energy sources before the end of the decade.”

The funding description stated that SunShot “expects to make between 10 and 15 awards ranging between $500,000 and $4,000,000” for near-term projects and “between $500,000 and $2,000,000” for long–term challenge projects.

The Grid Modernization Initiative (GMI), announced in March 2015, represents “a comprehensive effort to help shape the future of our nation’s grid and solve the challenges of integrating conventional and renewable sources with energy storage and smart buildings, while ensuring that the grid is resilient and secure to withstand growing cybersecurity and climate challenges.”


Hillary Clinton Will Continue Obama’s War on Coal

Following Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton’s comments about the decline of the coal industry in the United States, FreedomWorks CEO Adam Brandon responded:

“The reason the coal industry is suffering in this country is because of the policies of the Obama administration. When he first ran for president, Barack Obama made it clear that he intended to bankrupt the coal industry. When he couldn’t get his destructive cap-and-trade plan through Congress, he used the EPA to promulgate regulations on the coal industry that will cost our economy between $29 billion and $39 billion annually.”

“If Hillary Clinton was serious about helping the economies of coal states, she would pledge to reverse the regulatory onslaught of the Obama administration. Unfortunately, she has already indicated that she plans to continue waging the war on coal and double down on radical environmental policies that are devastating coal states and destroying jobs.”

FreedomWorks aims to educate, build, and mobilize the largest network of activists advocating the principles of smaller government, lower taxes, free markets, personal liberty and the rule of law.


"Green" subsidies kill off a coal-fired electricity generator in South Australia

The coal furnaces at Alinta Energy's Port Augusta power station in South Australia's north will go cold today as it goes offline.

Less than a year ago, Alinta Energy announced the station — which is the city's bigger employer — would close after the company struggled to compete with government-backed renewable energy.

The company closed its coal mine at Leigh Creek, which fuelled its Playford A power station late last year, but trainloads of coal have been making the journey to the power station several times a week until only recently. The mine had employed more than 250 people.

Alinta chief executive Jeff Dimery said the closure was sad for workers but inevitable. "The reality is, the technology we are using here is old, the cost structures are high and there's no longer a place for us in the market," Mr Dimery said. "It was inevitable. It is inevitable that more coal-fired power stations will close into the future."

He said some families had three generations who worked in energy production at the site, which started with the State Electricity Company.

Port Augusta's mayor Sam Johnson said the power station helped diversify the city's economy when it was a rail hub in the 1940s and 50s. "It gave a significant economic injection into Port Augusta both then and over its 62-year history," he said.

"[It's] a bit of a mixed feeling in Port Augusta at the moment and we've all known this now for the last 11 months that it is coming to an end. "It will have a big impact on Port August, big impact on the region and a big impact on the state."

Decommissioning to take up to two years

Mr Johnson said people had already left the area to find work elsewhere, but some had kept their houses with the intention to "return home". About 140 employees at the site will leave over the next fortnight, but some will stay on for decommissioning.

The decommissioning process could take about 18 months to two years to complete. The Playford B power station was mothballed in 2012.

Alinta Energy worker Gary Rowbottom said the mood at the station had been "fairly sombre". "I think everyone's feeling that sadness and wondering what comes next for them," Mr Rowbottom said.

SA Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis said the old coal-fired generator "was past its day". "The truth is, the reason it is closing is it couldn't make money in this market. The reason it can't make money in this market is even though it does pour in relatively cheap power into the grid, renewable energy is cheaper [due to subsidies]".



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


9 May, 2016

The crook Cook again

John Cook is a bald-faced liar and I would be delighted if he sues me for saying so.  He trots out below the old 97% myth when his own research showed that two thirds (66.4%) of climate scientists TOOK NO POSITION on global warming, which is what any skeptic would do in the present climate of censuring and censoring dissent.  The only 97% consensus was among the one third who DID take a position. 

Check it for yourself. The abstract of his paper says:  "We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW". Anybody who can read can see what a crook Cook is  -- just from his own writings

Cook does however make an interesting admission below.  He says that discussing the climate facts is unlikely to persuade people of global warming, which is right.  There are NO scientific facts which unambiguously support global warming.  It's only a focus on that bogus 97% that might win people over

I live only about 15 minutes drive away from where John Cook works so I challenged him to meet me and discuss global warming in person.  He agreed.  But when I asked if he minded me recording our conversation, I heard no more from him. He knows that his claims cannot stand the light of uncensored publicity

Communicating climate change is hard. Debunking climate myths is even harder.

Take it from me, I’ve spent the last decade researching climate communication and the psychology of misinformation. So let me express my expert opinion on a Jimmy Kimmel comedy segment on climate change.

It’s one of the better pieces of climate communication I’ve encountered.

Not everyone agrees. Scientist/filmmaker Randy Olsen has criticised Kimmel for giving free attention to climate denialist Marc Morano. Olsen does have a point. Morano scores a win by getting mainstream TV attention. But there’s a bigger picture here. The main winner on the night is public perception of scientific consensus.

The average person has no idea just how strong the scientific agreement on climate change is. Multiple studies have found 97% agreement among climate scientists that humans are causing global warming. In contrast, only 12% of Americans are aware that the consensus is over 90%.

Why the huge gap between public perception of consensus and the 97% reality? Part of the answer goes back nearly two decades. In the late 1990s, a Republican pollster Frank Luntz wrote a now infamous memo, advising Republicans to maintain doubt about the level of scientific agreement on climate change. Luntz’s market research had identified that what people thought about expert opinion affected other views on climate change.

It turns out Luntz was ahead of his time in identifying the psychological importance of perceived consensus. Scientific studies from 2011, 2013 and 2015 have identified perceived consensus as a “gateway belief”, influencing a range of attitudes about climate change including support for climate policy.

As a result, social scientists have urged climate scientists to set the record straight on scientific consensus. As far as climate communication messages go, this one is relatively straightforward. You don’t need to explain the mechanism of the greenhouse effect or the nuances of the carbon cycle (although those are good to explain if you get the opportunity). To effectively communicate the reality of climate change, you just need to mention that 97% of climate scientists agree that humans are causing global warming.

So Kimmel nails it. His approach is entirely consistent with the advice of communication experts. My guess is this is probably due to his instincts as a professional comedian rather than a thorough familiarity with the psychological literature on consensus messaging.

Either way, along with President Obama, John Oliver, U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron and Bernie Sanders, Kimmel has provided another valuable contribution to closing the consensus gap.


The world's children are already suffering from Climate Change

This crap hardly needs a reply but here goes:  COLD days are a much bigger killer than hot ones so a warmer world should be healthier for young and old.  Some harm can be done by heat but that is more than balanced out by the effects of cold

People urging more aggressive action on climate change often use children in their rhetoric: “we need to leave a better planet for our children,” “we owe it to the next generation to act,” etc. Earlier this year, two dozen children went so far as to sue the U.S. government for failing to act. “This is an intergenerational issue,” said James Hansen, a former NASA scientist supporting the lawsuit. “Our actions will affect our grandchildren and their children.”

The latest issue of the journal The Future of Children, a joint publication of Brookings and Princeton University, goes beyond the usual rhetoric and provides a detailed analysis of the impact of climate change on children’s wellbeing.

Extreme heat is associated with a rise in infant deaths, physical birth defects, delayed brain development, and nervous system problems, suggest Joshua Graff Zivin and Jeffrey Shrader in their contribution to the new volume. Excess heat can also reduce human capital development by damaging learning.

The direct effects of heat are just one way climate change can have an impact on children. Contributors to the volume examine a range of risks, including:

"the effect of extreme weather on political conflict and violence
greater pollution leading to increased asthma rates

the effects of more powerful and more frequent natural disasters on children’s nutrition and physical health

greater pollution—specifically fine particulates—affecting academic test scores

The priority for public policy should be to slow temperature rises by curbing greenhouse gas emissions.


Some big effects of NATURAL climate change

You won’t find it in history textbooks, but the Roman Empire’s rise to dominance in Egypt and the Middle East may have been influenced by a series of volcanic eruptions that reduced rainfall.

These eruptions could have contributed to the sabotage and destruction of the Ptolemaic Kingdom on the Nile, paving the way for the rise of Cleopatra and the Roman Empire – and, ultimately, the modern Western world.

The Ptolemaic Kingdom ruled Egypt and North Africa in the final three centuries BC, known as the Hellenistic period. Now, teamwork between volcanologists and historians has revealed a close match in timing between volcanic eruptions and domestic unrest, revolts and uprisings that led to the kingdom’s downfall.

“So far, Hellenistic history has never had any climate component,” says Joseph Manning, a historian at Yale University. Bringing in the impact of climate shocks on the unfolding of history is important, he says.

“There were revolts and social unrest from 245 BC onwards, down to the mid-first century BC,” Manning told the meeting of the European Geosciences Union in Vienna, Austria, last week. “One involved the entire river valley along the Nile for 20 years.”

At the heart of the unrest were starvation and famine in the Ptolemaic Kingdom, where grain harvests were critically dependent on annual flooding of fertile plains by the East African monsoon.

Rain drops

Fallout from major eruptions that affected global climate would have cut the annual rains in the highlands of Ethiopia that drained into the Blue Nile and ultimately irrigated the kingdom’s crops.

“Aerosols from volcanoes reduce evaporation and cool the temperature, leading to fewer clouds,” says Francis Ludlow of Trinity College Dublin in Ireland, and the team’s climate historian.

Volcanic fallout is known from more recent times to interfere with an equatorial belt of air called the Intertropical Convergence Zone that seasonally shifts up and down around the world, bringing monsoon rains either north or south depending on the time of year.

“You must have rain in the Ethiopian highlands to irrigate the Nile valley, so if monsoon rains are disrupted, the usual floods would have been lost,” says Ludlow.

Matching times

Ludlow, Manning and their colleagues have now found almost exact matches between the timing of uprisings in the kingdom and new eruptions they identified. The latter were deduced from spikes in sulphate contamination in ice cores taken from Greenland and Antarctica, while dating of the uprisings came from historical accounts.

The researchers found that eight out of nine documented revolts against the Ptolemaic rulers began within two years of eruption dates.

Further historical investigations showed that the revolts severely disrupted attempts by Ptolemaic armies to seize new territory in Mesopotamia through at least nine major wars with their main rivals, the Seleucid Empire that straddled parts of the Middle East and Central Asia, between 274 and 96 BC.

Manning has now tied previously unexplained retreats from battle by the Ptolemaic rulers to the need to deal with insurrections on home territory. Unable to retain new territory on the battlefield, the kingdom eventually shrank,  giving way to rivals.

The misery caused by eruptions was also linked to significant decrees issued by Ptolemaic rulers. For instance, the priests’ decree of Canopus in 238 BC reports moves by Egypt to import grain in huge amounts from overseas, underscoring the severity of the domestic famine.

“Now, we can see it’s all lining up,” says Manning. “The last four centuries BC were very active volcanically and as a result saw this incredible instability, which ultimately paved the way for the kingdom to fall and for the rise of the Roman Empire.

Modern origins

In the grand scheme of things, Manning says, the weakening of the Ptolemaic Kingdom led to the forces of Cleopatra and Antony being defeated by Octavian’s Roman army. And without Rome as we know it, Europe would have looked very different, too.

“This is the beginning of the modern world, around the second century BC,” he says, and had the Ptolemaic kingdom not fallen, the world could have looked very different.

“I find it to be a very intriguing study,” says Matthew Toohey, of the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel, Germany. He cites more recent eruptions, particularly those of Laki, Iceland, in 1783 and Novarupta, Alaska, in 1912, that we know affected the levels of the Nile river.

“There is an emerging understanding of the physical mechanisms behind changes in the monsoons and tropical rainfall after such eruptions,” says Toohey. “It’s not hard to imagine that eruptions of the more distant past had similar effects on the Nile.”

The authors have presented “fascinating” correlations between well-dated records of climate change, Nile-flood reduction and societal unrest, says Brian Dermody, who studies the impact of climate on the Roman Empire at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. “The coincidence in dating indicates that there is likely a link between these environmental changes and societal unrest within the Ptolemaic Kingdom.”

However, he says that Nile floods were highly variable throughout history – so it would be interesting to explore why some societies, such as those of the Ptolemaic period, seemingly had lower resilience to fluctuations in Nile floods than those at other times.


Climate fraud in Canada

“Eco-freaks” wrong about Fort Mac wildfires. Here’s what DID cause them

Fort McMurray is devastated by wildfires, tens of thousands of people have been evacuated and have lost their homes and possessions but that didn’t stop people from blaming climate change for the catastrophe.

The eco-crazies were out in full force on social media, rejoicing as the town went up in flames -- even Elizabeth May stopped just short of blaming Alberta for bringing the catastrophe on. And who could forget the tweet from former NDP candidate Tom Moffat, who called the fires “karmic” and used the hash tag “Feel the Bern” to mock the town.

I know this is going to come as a shock but wildfires like the Miramichi fire that happened in New Brunswick and the Peshtigo fire in 1871 have occurred throughout history.

Scientists that specialize in climate say global average temperatures have risen only one degree and that if human activity is the culprit in rising temperatures, it would have only been significant starting from 1960. A degree in temperature increase is not “catastrophic” and the argument that climate change causes wildfires is flawed simply based on the fact that there have been more catastrophic events throughout time.

So, what did cause the fires?

It all started with El Nino, the appearance of unusually warm water off of Peru and Ecuador that causes complex changes in climate. It meant winter ended a month earlier in Alberta, causing higher than average temperatures. This in turn caused dry conditions that have provided ample fuel in the form of tinder dry forest fires.

A report released in 2012 also found that our forests are aging and much drier than 50 years ago. For Fort McMurray, it was one of those times where the elements for a wildfire were present – dry fuel, low humidity and high winds.

El Nino and aging forests aren’t a result of climate change, or human activity, so when are the politicians and eco-freaks going to stop misleading people and just have some compassion for the people of Fort McMurray?


Al Gore: Solving ‘Climate Crisis’ Will ‘Save the Future of Civilization’

A man with VISION!

Former Vice President Al Gore said on Thursday that solving what he called the “climate crisis” would not only help the U.S. and global economy but could save civilization itself.

Speaking at the Climate Action 2016 summit in Washington, D.C., Gore said the “Number One threat to the global economy is the climate crisis,” which also threatens the U.S. economy, and that turning that around requires investment in the right kind of infrastructure here and abroad.

In the United States, Gore called for “physical stimulus in a coordinated way aimed at infrastructure that the country needs, which means de-carbonization, renewable energy, batteries, energy storage, sustainable forestry, sustainable agriculture.”

“This is the opportunity to save the economy and a side benefit would be to save the future of civilization,” Gore said.

Judith Rodin, president of the Rockefeller Foundation, also spoke at the event and called climate change an “urgent issue.”

She said leaders should look to communities that are tackling climate change, such as New Orleans, which is losing “a football field” of land on an hourly basis.

“So often we find the best solutions, the truly breakthrough – kind of groundbreaking innovations – are already at work in some communities somewhere in the world,” Rodin said.

“For example, the city of New Orleans is working to restore their bayous, their wetlands triangle, which are very vulnerable by rebuilding critical areas of the coast that are subject to coastal erosion and reducing economic activity, as well as the well-being of their population,” Rodin said.

“This is an urgent issue,” she said. “Think about this.”


Al Gore's Inconvenient Reality

May 24 will mark 10 years since Al Gore’s climate horror flick “An Inconvenient Truth” made its debut. The fact we’re able to write about it now is good news, because obviously the world, contrary to the film’s prognostications, hasn’t imploded (not in regards to the climate, anyway). But scientists and wannabe political superstars rarely grade their own work. Thankfully, third-party investigators do, and reporter Michael Bastasch re-watched the film to vet the claims Gore made in his farcical Nobel Prize-winning project. A decade later, here’s the reality:

“Kilimanjaro Still Has Snow”
“Gore Left Out The 15-Year ‘Hiatus’ In Warming”
“The Weather Hasn’t Gotten Worse”
“The North Pole Still Has Ice”
“A ‘Day After Tomorrow’-Style Ice Age Is Still A Day Away”

You can rummage the thorough details here. Complimenting Bastasch’s work, Steven Hayward adds, “Gore made much of Greenland’s ice sheet melting so rapidly you’d think the continent was a grilled cheese sandwich in a pizza oven. Science magazine reports this week that the interior of Greenland’s enormous ice mass appears to be … completely stable.” On Wednesday, a headline posted by the University of Illinois read, “Study finds ice isn’t being lost from Greenland’s interior.” This is Al Gore’s genuine inconvenient reality.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


8 May, 2016

New analyses reveal that a doubling of atmospheric CO2 would have only a tiny effect on temperature

Will Coal save Japan and the World?

Kyoji Kimoto


The central dogma is critically evaluated in the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory of the IPCC, claiming the Planck response is 1.2K when CO2 is doubled. The first basis of it is one dimensional model studies with the fixed lapse rate assumption of 6.5K/km. It is failed from the lack of the parameter sensitivity analysis of the lapse rate for CO2 doubling. The second basis is the Planck response calculation by Cess in 1976 having a mathematical error. Therefore, the AGW theory is collapsed along with the canonical climate sensitivity of 3 K utilizing the radiative forcing of 3.7W/m2 for CO2 doubling. The surface climate sensitivity is 0.14–0.17K in this study with the surface radiative forcing of l.lW/m2. Since the CO2 issue is removed, coal will be the energy for the future of many nations in terms of the amount of resource and production cost.


Global warming is pushing high altitude clouds towards the poles, Nasa study finds

The article below is a combination of fact and theory.  The factual finding is that high altitude clouds have moved polewards over the last 30 years -- something that would help explain why Arctic temperatures are so erratic and often out of step with the rest of the world.  But WHY the clouds have moved poleward nobody knows.  They speculate, predictably,  that it is due to global warming -- but since we have had so little warming for most of the period concerned, that is just a statement of faith.  Models don't you tell you anything about the world.  All they tell you about is the assumptions of the modeller.  I like the model below a  lot better

And I don't even know her name

A new Nasa analysis of 30-years of satellite data has revealed high altitude clouds shifting toward the poles are being moved by the expansion of the tropics.

The changes could dramatically affect the planet's climate, expert warn.

Where clouds are absent, darker surfaces like the ocean or vegetated land absorb heat, but where clouds occur their white tops reflect incoming sunlight away, which can cause a cooling effect on Earth's surface.

Understanding the underlying causes of cloud migration will allow researchers to better predict how they may affect Earth's climate in the future, the researchers say.

They say the changes are driven by the tropics effectively becoming larger as the planet warms.

George Tselioudis, a climate scientist at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies and Columbia University in New York City, was interested in which air currents were shifting clouds at high altitude - between about three and a half and six miles high - toward the poles.

The previous suggested reason was that climate change was shifting storms and the powerful air currents known as the jet streams - including the one that traverses the United States - toward the poles, which in turn were driving the movement of the clouds.

Researchers analysed the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project data set, which combines cloud data from operational weather satellites, including those run by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, to provide a 30-year record of detailed cloud observations.

They combined the cloud data with a computer re-creation of Earth's air currents for the same period driven by multiple surface observations and satellite data sets.

What they discovered was that the poleward shift of the clouds, which occurs in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, connected more strongly with the expansion of the tropics, defined by the general circulation Hadley cell, than with the movement of the jets.

'What we find, and other people have found it as well, is that the sinking branch of the Hadley cell, as the climate warms, tends to be moving poleward,' said Tselioudis.

'It's like you're making the tropical region bigger.'

That expansion causes the tropical air currents to blow into the high altitude clouds, pushing them toward the poles, he said.

The results were published in Geophysical Research Letters, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.

Scientists are working to understand exactly why the tropics are expanding, which they believe is related to a warming climate.

The poleward shift of high altitude clouds affects how much sunlight reaches Earth's surface because when they move, they reveal what's below.

'It's like pulling a curtain,' said Tselioudis. And what tends to be revealed depends on location - which in turn affects whether the surface below warms or not.

'Sometimes when that curtain is pulled, as in the case over the North Atlantic ocean in the winter months, this reduces the overall cloud cover' in the lower mid-latitudes, the temperate regions outside of the tropics, Tselioudis said.

The high altitude clouds clear to reveal dark ocean below - which absorbs incoming sunlight and causes a warming effect.

However, in the Southern Ocean around Antarctica, the high altitude clouds usually clear out of the way to reveal lower altitude clouds below - which continue to reflect sunlight from their white tops, causing little effect on the solar radiation reaching the surface.

That information is a new insight that will likely be used by the climate modeling community, including the scientists who contribute modeling expertise to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, said Lazaros Oreopoulos, a cloud and radiation budget researcher at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, who was not involved in the study. 


We don’t need billion$ to prevent Zika

Controlling mosquitoes and preventing diseases requires smarter policies, not more billions

Paul Driessen and Robert Novak

The Zika virus is increasingly linked to serious neurological complications for pregnant women and microcephaly in newborns: smaller than normal heads and brains. It also affects areas of fetal brains that control basic muscular, motor, speech and other functions, leading to severe debilities that require expensive care throughout a person’s life.

The disease is becoming a crisis in Brazil, site of this year’s Summer Olympic Games. But cases continue to be reported in the United States, primarily among women who have traveled abroad, and Zika is reaching serious levels in Puerto Rico, other US territories, and many parts of Central and South America.

Stopping its spread is an urgent public health matter. President Obama has asked Congress for $1.9 billion in new funding, to find better diagnostic tests to detect Zika, develop a vaccine against the virus, and control the mosquitoes that are the primary vector for the vicious virus.

Not surprisingly, the request has spawned new budget battles in Washington. The White House and congressional Democrats want to spend new money, while Republicans insist there is already plenty of money in the budget, plenty wasted that could be better allocated, and plenty being spent on climate change and other programs that have a far lower priority than this public health menace.

Other observers say Zika is being used as another opportunity for government agencies to expand their budgets, personnel and empires. Certain agencies, they note, are blaming “mosquitoes” in general and even climate change, or promoting high-tech “solutions” that may never work and will take years to develop, test and employ on national or global scales.

Meanwhile, much can be done right now, to reduce mosquito populations and slash the incidence and spread of this disease, for far less than $2 billion. It requires smarter policies, more focused efforts.

Zika is not spread by generic “mosquitoes.” Its primary carrier is a very particular blood-sucker with unusual habits and habitats. Aedes aegypti is known as the yellow fever mosquito, because it is the principal avenue for spreading that nasty disease, which causes fevers, chills, nausea, muscle pains, and liver and kidney damage. A vaccine exists, but yellow fever still kills up to 30,000 people annually.

Ae. aegypti also spread dengue fever, another painful, debilitating disease that can recur for years; there is no vaccine, and it sickens nearly 100 million people a year, killing some 25,000. The flying killers also infect people with chikungunya, which often causes severe fever, headaches, muscle and joint pain, rashes and other non-lethal problems.

These mosquitoes were nearly eradicated, especially in Brazil, during the 1960s. Unfortunately, control bred complacency, and Ae. aegypti is again a dangerous scourge in Brazil, other South and Central American countries, Puerto Rico, Caribbean islands, Africa and Asia.

Their potential range includes the southeastern United States and southern Europe, they are actually found in some of these southern US states and Hawaii, and some do carry Zika and other diseases. All these diseases can infect blood supplies, making transfusions risky and necessitating that blood be imported from safe locales that may not have sufficient supplies themselves.

Summer Olympics fans and athletes could get infected and carry these diseases from Brazil back to their home countries. Thousands of other travelers could also spread all these diseases. The prospect has health officials worried. However,  Ae. aegypti’s habits offer opportunities for controlling them.

They live close to houses, rarely fly more than 80 feet from where they hatch, bite during the day, and hatch from eggs laid in tires, cans, jars, flower pots, vases, bromeliads, holes in trees, and almost any other containers that hold water, indoors and outdoors, in backyards and junkyards.

That means national and international health ministries, neighborhoods and individual families can undertake simple, low-cost actions that will bring rapid, significant returns with limited time, money and resources – by eliminating mosquitoes and keeping them away from people. They should start now.

1) Educate politicians, local leaders, teachers, neighborhood organizations and citizens about the dangers posed by mosquitoes and the diseases they carry – and about what they can do to help. Launch and coordinate home and neighborhood programs, and stress why they must continue well into the future.

2) Destroy Aedes aegypti reproduction habitats. Remove trash, especially containers. Punch holes in tires and cans, so they cannot collect water. Fill in other standing water areas with dirt. Augment these actions with larvacides and insecticides.

Used properly, today’s larvae and adult mosquito killing chemicals are safe – especially compared to the misery, death and long-term care that Ae. aegypti and other mosquitoes spread. Centers for Disease Control, National Institutes of Health and other studies have determined that the most commonly used larvicides (BTI and Temephos, aka Abate) are safe for humans and mammals, even in drinking water.

3) Prevent mosquito bites, to break the disease transmission cycle. This is especially important for people attending the Olympics or vacationing where problems exist. You don’t want to take diseases home.

Use personal insect repellants, preferably those containing DEET, even while indoors, and keep skin covered with clothing. To keep mosquitoes out of homes, make sure doors and windows have screens. For homes without screens, spatial repellents like DDT can be sprayed on walls and doorways.

4) Employ cell phone GPS systems to locate and monitor mosquito populations, and significant biting and disease outbreaks. Every citizen can help with this. Tie these efforts into local or national databases – and into monitoring and surveillance programs that can dispatch rapid response teams.

5) Test people for antibodies, especially pregnant women, to determine whether they have Zika or other mosquito-transmitted diseases. The RT-PCR test can find Zika proteins and genetic material in people, and in the brains and placentas of infants and miscarried fetuses. It can also rule out dengue, yellow and chikungunya fever viruses. Developing better, more rapid detection tests will be money well spent.

This multi-pronged approach is true “integrated vector and disease control.” It will bring rapid returns.

Nonetheless, at least two high-tech, non-chemical “solutions” have been proposed. They involve releasing male mosquitoes that have been sterilized by radiation, so they cannot mate successfully – or genetically modified so their progeny die before reaching maturity.

At least one experimental GMO effort has been field-tested, somewhat successfully, with gradual but noticeable reductions in mosquito populations in test areas. Since male mosquitoes don’t bite, releasing them into urban areas should pose few health risks. The concepts have researchers, technocrats and bureaucrats salivating over potential budgets and personnel increases.

However, field tests are just that: tests. The experimental programs must still survive long US Food and Drug Administration and Agriculture Department approval processes, budgetary constraints, anti-biotechnology and anti-radiation activism, and similar delays at the international level.

Neither approach can help in the near term, across the sprawling Rio de Janeiro Olympics venues, urban areas and shantytowns – or across millions of square miles in Latin America, Africa, Asia and beyond.

We cannot afford to deemphasize or shortchange the less sexy, but proven, highly effective, truly integrated vector and disease control programs described above. These strategies can and must be employed now, to eliminate Aedes aegypti mosquitoes and the horrible diseases they spread.

They will save lives now – in time for the Olympics, before these bugs and diseases claim more victims.

Via email

Dr. Fauci: Brazil Eliminated Zika-Carrying Mosquitoes Historically--Using DDT

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), said on Tuesday that Brazil was able to eliminate the Zika-virus-carrying Aedes aegypti mosquito when, in the 1950s and 1960s, it made "a very aggressive attempt" to do so that included "very heavy use of DDT."

He cautioned that the means used to eradicate the mosquito then "might not be acceptable now."

“Now, years ago in the fifties and the sixties,” Fauci said, “Brazil itself made a very aggressive attempt to eliminate the Aedes aegypti mosquito. They did it successfully but they did it in a way that would be almost non-feasible today—very heavy use of DDT, very aggressive use going into homes, essentially, spraying in homes, cleaning up areas, things that I think the general public would not be amenable to accepting.

“So, it can be done," Fauci said. "But historically it was done in a way that might not be acceptable now."

Currently, the mosquito-borne Zika virus is spreading in South America and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) warn that the mosquitoes which carry Zika will populate much of the United States this summer.

At Tuesday’s news conference, Dr. Fauci said, “The mosquito that is the predominant mosquito that spreads Zika is called Aedes aegypti. Aedes aegypti is a very difficult mosquito to control and eliminate.”

“It will require a very aggressive, concerted effort,” Fauci cautioned of attempts to eliminate the mosquitoes. “Their ability to exist and stay in places that are difficult to eliminate; mosquitoes, for example, they like to stay indoors as well as outdoors, which make the spraying, the outdoor spraying, ineffective for those mosquitoes.”

“What one would have to do is raise public awareness,” he said, “have cooperation at the community level to get people as best as they possibly can where they can to eliminate and diminish standing water of any type, as well as to push and to try to utilize environmentally friendly larvicides and insecticides.”

“Having said all of that,” he continued,  “it’s still going to be very, very difficult to do.”

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released maps of the estimated range of the Aedes aegypti in the United States last month, as well as the Aedes albopictus, another mosquito that is capable of transmitting Zika. The CDC verified to that the map of potential exposure includes all but 10 states in the United States.

Fauci emphasized that while Aedes albopictus has a greater estimated range in the United States than the aegypti mosquito, “overwhelmingly the dominant mosquito that spreads it is Aedes aegypti and there’s a number of reasons for that.”

“Aedes aegypti is a much different mosquito: it bites in the day, at night, it goes indoors, outdoors, it’s very difficult to eliminate, only likes to bite humans,” he explained. “The albopictus and other mosquitoes they get distracted, they bite animals, they bite a variety of other species. So when you have Zika and you have Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, the chances are overwhelming that Aedes aegypti is going to be the major factor.”

Fauci also stressed that the real concern over the Zika virus “is the association of Zika infection in a pregnant woman with congenital abnormalities, predominantly microcephaly in a variable percentage of babies born of Zika infected mothers.”

Fauci cited a small cohort study from Brazil that found that 29 percent of Zika-infected mothers had abnormalities in sonograms of their unborn children. Fauci also cited a study that found that 1 percent of Zika-infected mothers had children with birth defects.

Fauci said another cohort study, “The Zika in Pregnancy Study,” is underway and will enroll thousands of pregnant women in South America, predominantly Brazil.

“When we get the data from that study we’ll be able to answer the question of precisely what that percentage (of Zika-infected women with birth defects) is,” he said, “but today in May of 2016 we don’t know the answer.”


Another failure of a scientific consensus

A new study has challenged the scientific consensus that replacing saturated fats with polyunsaturated vegetable oils rich in linoleic acid (omega-6) reduces the risk of death from coronary heart disease.

Every five years, the federal government publishes nutritional guidelines that “reflect the current body of nutrition science” and “serve as the foundation for vital nutrition policies and programs across the United States.”

The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines’ recommendation to “limit intake of calories from saturated fats to less than 10 percent per day is a target based on evidence that replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats is associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), “diets high in saturated fats, trans fat, and cholesterol have been linked to heart disease and related conditions, such as atherosclerosis.”

But the study, which was published April 12 in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), found that “replacement of saturated fat in the diet with linoleic acid effectively lowers serum cholesterol, but does not support the hypothesis that this translates to a lower risk of death from coronary heart disease or all causes.”

“As expected, the diet enriched with linoleic acid lowered cholesterol levels, but this did not translate to improved survival,” according to a BMJ press release. “In fact, participants who had greater reduction in blood cholesterol had higher, rather than lower, risk of death.”

The study was conducted by a team of researchers from the U.S. and Australia led by Christopher Ramsden, a medical investigator at the National Institutes of Health, who reexamined raw data and unpublished autopsy reports from the federally funded Minnesota Coronary Experiment (MCE).

The MCE was “a randomized controlled trial conducted in 1968-73” of 9,423 individuals between the ages of 20 and 97 who were living in six state mental hospitals and a nursing home in Minnesota.

Study participants who were assigned to the control diet for more than a year had a high intake of saturated fats from milk, cheese and beef.

However, the diet of the “intervention group” replaced about 50 percent of the saturated fat in the control diet with a 280 percent increase in polyunsaturated vegetable fat, mostly in the form of corn oil and corn oil margarine.

“Though the MCE intervention effectively lowered serum cholesterol in all pre-specified subgroups, there was no clinical benefit in any group. Paradoxically, MCE participants who had greater reduction in serum cholesterol had a higher rather than a lower risk of death,” the study found. 

“In addition, the MCE intervention group did not have less atherosclerosis or fewer infarcts at autopsy.”

Autopsy results showed that “41% (31/76) of participants in the intervention group had at least one myocardial infarct, whereas only 22% (16/73) of participants in the control group did,” according to the research team.

“There was a robust association between decreasing serum cholesterol and increased risk of death, and this association did not differ between the intervention and control group,” the study noted.

“This finding that greater lowering of serum cholesterol was associated with a higher rather than a lower risk of death in the MCE does not provide support for the traditional diet-heart hypothesis,” the researchers concluded.


Inspector General Thinks Obama's Coal Program a Waste

The Department of Energy inspector general leveled criticism against a program to capture emissions from coal plants that has wasted hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars and has yet to materialize. For the administration, however, the stakes are higher than simply running another failed program. The Texas Clean Energy Project was needed if coal plants around the country were going to comply with the Obama administration’s tough, tough rules on the industry. Without the program that is attempting to commercialize trapping emissions leaving coal plants and disposing of them underground, Obama’s regulations mandating the practice of carbon capture and sequestration would become illegal. Even though the project was started in 2010, it has not caught the eye of private investors. Furthermore, it’s still in development, with the project to go live in 2019. “The Project’s inability to obtain required commercial debt and equity financing and the adverse effect of changing energy markets on the demand for coal-based power plants raise serious doubts about the continuing viability of the Project,” the IG’s report read.

Existence of the program just proves the lengths to which the Obama administration will go to institute climate change regulation. It decreed regulation so strict there was no commercial solution coal companies could turn to. So it started a program, supposedly, to provide some farce of a free-market solution. And everyone wonders at the fact coal companies are going out of business. Remember: Hillary Clinton said she’d put coal miners and their companies out of business, only continuing what this administration has started.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


6 May, 2016

More Freudian projection from the Warmists

There is no group in this wide world more immune to persuasion by the facts than the Green/Left.  They HAVE to be unaffected by the facts because their beliefs are so counterfactual.  Could anything be more absurd as statements of fact than classic Leftist slogans such as: "All men are equal", "Man is naturally good" or "All men are brothers"?  Yet the article below claims that it is conservatives and climate skreptics who tend to be immune to the facts.  Freud would understand.  Seeing your own faults in others is a common defence mechanism.

And Warmists NEED to believe that there is something wrong in the heads of their opponents.  Realizing that something which they see as obsessively important is seen as unimportant by most people creates cognitive dissonance in their heads.  How can so many be so wrong?  How can so many not see these obvious truths?  Are Warmists the only sane ones?  So to relieve that dissonance they have to dimiss any possiblity that their opponents might be right and instead find some defect in their opponents

The title of the original article is "Scientists are figuring out the keys to convincing people about global warming".  It was written by dedicated climate deceiver Dana Nuccitelli and appeared in the Leftist "Guardian".  Just an excerpt below from a whole heap of garbage

Can facts convince people about global warming?

Social scientist Dan Kahan has argued that ideological and cultural identity can be so strong that scientific evidence, facts, and information can’t break through it. Kahan thinks that on certain issues like climate change, ideological biases make many conservatives immune to facts.

In fact, conservatives with higher education and general scientific knowledge are often more wrong about climate change, in what’s been coined the “smart idiot” effect. This has led Kahan to conclude that on climate change, facts and knowledge can’t sway people. However, other research has found that climate-specific knowledge does correlate with acceptance of climate science.

In the new study led by Jing Shi, the authors surveyed a total of 2,495 people in Canada, China, Germany, Switzerland, the UK, and the US. They asked questions to evaluate the participants’ specific knowledge about the physical characteristics of climate change and understanding of its causes and consequences.

Critically, they found that knowledge about the causes of climate change was correlated with higher concern about climate change in all countries, and knowledge about the consequences was linked to higher concern in most countries.

"respondents from Germany and Switzerland had significantly higher scores on knowledge about physical aspects of climate change than participants from Canada and the US. Chinese respondents knew significantly more about the causes of climate change than the respondents from the other countries. German and Swiss respondents were most knowledgeable about the consequences of climate change. In contrast, participants from the US had the lowest level of knowledge about climate change among the six countries we surveyed, independent of the type of knowledge"

In short, as illustrated in the Yale/George Mason poll numbers, people who realize that humans are causing global warming are more likely to be concerned about the problem.

In Shi’s survey, the Chinese respondents had the most knowledge about the causes of global warming, with the German and Swiss participants most accurately answering the questions about its consequences. These nationalities also expressed the greatest concern about climate change. Americans showed the least climate knowledge and the least concern.

The keys to convincing people on climate change

Social scientists have identified several key pieces of knowledge that might convince people – even conservatives – about the need to tackle global warming.

Shi’s team showed that when people realize humans are causing global warming, they’re more likely to be concerned about the problem.

Social scientists at UC Berkeley have shown that when people understand how the greenhouse effect works, they’re more likely to accept human-caused global warming, across the political spectrum.

Research by teams led by Lewandowsky has shown that when people are aware of the 90–100% expert consensus on human-caused global warming, they’re more likely to accept that reality, and to support climate policies. Meanwhile, only 16% of Americans, including just 4% of Republicans, realize the expert consensus is so high.

This social science research shows that teaching people about the expert consensus and how the greenhouse effect works can increase their likelihood of accepting the reality human-caused global warming and potentially increase their support of policies to solve the problem.

It may be the case that ideology acts as a mental block preventing conservative Republicans from accepting facts like the 90–100% expert consensus on human-caused global warming. However, while there’s certainly a group who are unreachable due to ideologically-based science denial, they are a relatively small and dwindling segment of the population. For the vast majority of people who underestimate the expert consensus and don’t understand the mechanics of the greenhouse effect, this knowledge can make a difference.

As this research shows, if climate communicators can successfully inform people about how the greenhouse effect works and that humans are responsible for global warming, more will come to support climate policies, and it will become even more of a winning political issue.


Book review: “The Fable of a Stable Climate”.  Review by  By Dr. Hans Labohm (Edited/condensed by P. Gosselin)

Gerrit van der Lingen has recently published a fascinating book, “The Fable of a Stable Climate, the writings and debates of a climate realist”.

Most of the public information about the climate comes from scientists who studied the weather and weather processes and who consider temperature data of 150 years already a long period. For geologist and paleoclimatologist van der Lingen this is only a heartbeat in the geological history, which forms the only correct context for judging the present climate developments.

Ideology vs pure science

While studying climate change in the past van der Lingen realised that the present belief in man-made catastrophic global warming caused by CO2 emissions is not supported by the science and that it seems the debate is one between ideology and pure science.

The first chapter of his book an overview giving a clear overview of the climate debate, with all its high and low points. It draws attention to important participants, protagonists as well as antagonists. What really surprises Gerrit van der Lingen is how it is possible that intelligent people have been taken in by the AGW hypothesis and seem to have lost all sense of reality as a consequence.

British science delegation misbehaviour

One salient detail in the book pertains to the Russian position in relation to the Kyoto Protocol. The Russians had a few questions on which they never received an answer. In 2004, they decided to organise a climate conference in Moscow, independently of the UN IPCC climate panel, and with the co-operation of a number of climate sceptics. At the end of this conference, Andrei Illarionov, then economic advisor of president Putin, presented his impressions.

Yuri Antonovich and I have mentioned the fact that this is the first seminar of its kind that we have managed to arrange and it was accidental. Over almost a year we have repeatedly asked our foreign partners who advocate the Kyoto Protocol and who insist that Russia should ratify the Kyoto Protocol, and we have invited them to meet and discuss these issues, present arguments and counter-arguments and discuss them jointly. But we have not received any reply for a year. These people persistently refused to take part in any discussion.

Nine months ago, at an international climate change conference in Moscow, ten questions concerning the essence of the Kyoto Protocol and its underlying theory were submitted to the IPCC. We were told that the reply would be given within several days. Nine months have passed since then but there has been no reply, even though we have repeated our inquiries on these and the growing number of other related questions.

Instead of getting replies to our questions, we kept on hearing that replies did not matter. What was important is that whether or not Russia trusts Britain, the European Union and the countries that have ratified the Kyoto Protocol and that have been exerting unprecedented pressure on Russia to ratify it. This is why it was so important for us to arrange a real meeting and a real discussion of real problems with the participation of foreign scientists who have different views in order not to stew in one’s own juice, as Yuri Antonovich put it, but to hear the arguments not only of our Russian scientists but also the arguments and counter-arguments from scientists in other countries.

We did get such an opportunity and over the past two days we heard more than 20 reports, we held detailed discussions, and now we can say that a considerable number of the questions we formulated and raised have been somewhat clarified, just as some other questions have.”

Andrei Illarionov continued describing in detail the misbehaviour of the British delegation under the leadership of Sir David King, then the most important advisor of the British government, who did his utmost to sabotage the meeting, among others by requiring that climate sceptics not be allowed to present their presentations, and by stalking out of the meeting.

Ideology, not science

Illarionov compared the AGW with an ideology:

The next point brings us directly to the Kyoto Protocol, or more specifically, to the ideological and philosophical basis on which it is built. That ideological base can be juxtaposed and compared … with man-hating totalitarian ideology with which we had the bad fortune to deal during the 20th century, such as National Socialism, Marxism, Eugenics, Lysenkoism and so on. All methods of distorting information existing in the world have been committed to prove the alleged validity of these theories. Misinformation, falsification, fabrication, mythology, propaganda. Because what is offered cannot be qualified in any other way than myth, nonsense and absurdity.”

The Moscow climate conference leaves no doubt that the Russian Academy of Sciences cannot be considered as supporters of the AGW dogma – a thesis that is part of the standard repertoire of the disinformation by climate alarmists.

“Rubbish in – gospel out”

The book also looks at all important themes of the climate debate are discussed in short, clear analyses, and all allegations of the climate alarmists are tested against measurements and observations, and are refuted. In the end all warming hysteria is not based on science, but only on non-validated computer models. As is often said: Rubbish in – gospel out.

At the end of the book, Gerrit van der Lingen sighs:

When future historians will be studying the present global mass hysteria about alleged catastrophic man-made global warming (MMGW), they will most likely shake their heads in total disbelief. They may well compare it with other such historic irrational hysterias, like the tulipomania in Holland in the 17th century. […]

The belief that human emissions of carbon dioxide cause, or will cause catastrophic global warming is a […] totalitarian belief. It does not allow ‘critical discussion’. Those scientists who try are vilified. Over the years I collected the following abuses: ‘climate change deniers’, ‘cashamplified flat-earth pseudo scientists’, ‘the carbon cartel’, ‘villains’, ‘cranks’, ‘refuseniks lobby’, ‘polluters’, ‘a powerful and devious enemy’, ‘profligates’. The list is endless. […]

By saying that the science of climate change is ‘settled’ and not open to further discussion, clearly shows that the belief in man-made global warming is not based on proper science, but is a neo-Marxist, intolerant ideology. It is anti-science, anti-capitalist, anti-democracy, anti-growth, anti-humanity, anti-progress.”

All in all, “The Fable of a Stable Climate” shows a wide and solid knowledge of the subject. Moreover Gerrit van der Lingen has the talent to very clearly explain the complicated problems, which make his writings very accessible for a broad public. In other words: his book reads like a riveting novel.

The book has 418 pages and many illustrations and graphs, as well as extensive reference lists, and is available in both paperback and Kindle, can be ordered at


Sorry, Environmentalists: Buffalo Were Saved From Extinction by Capitalism

The North American bison, widely known as the buffalo, will now likely be recognized as America’s “national mammal”—on par with the bald eagle. (The bill is heading to the president’s desk.)

It is a fine tribute to a creature etched into American lore. While praises are already being made to the efforts of conservationists and modern environmentalists to save North America’s largest land mammal, the reality is that the species was saved by capitalism.

After describing how bison populations “dwindled from tens of millions to the brink of extinction,” a Huffington Post contributor wrote that the animal must be “acknowledged as the first success story of the modern conservation movement.”

Conservationists did play a role in saving the buffalo from extinction, but it was in large part the power of the free market that allowed the once-decimated species to thrive after nearly being wiped out.

Any description of the Great Plains in the 19th century usually involves vast herds of the giant, imposing bison dotting the landscape. The great frontier historian, Francis Parkman, included numerous, vivid descriptions of buffalo herds and hunts in his books.

Parkman wrote in “The Oregon Trail,”

"The face of the country was dotted far and wide with countless hundreds of buffalo. They trooped along in files and columns, bulls, cows, and calves … They scrambled away over the hills to the right and left; and far off, the blue pale swells in the extreme distance were dotted with innumerable specks"

Native American tribes of the Great Plains relied on the American bison for food when early American pioneers encountered them in the 18th and 19th centuries. The Plains Indians had unique hunting methods that were efficient, yet wasteful.

Anyone who has spent time in Wyoming, Montana, or any one of the Plains states is likely to have encountered giant, seemingly random craters. These are the remains of what were called “buffalo jumps,” and were the primary way many tribes cultivated the animal for food.

Frontier explorer Meriwether Lewis, of the famed Lewis and Clark expedition, described one of these jumps in an 1805 journal entry:

"Today we passed on the Stard. side the remains of a vast many mangled carcases of Buffalow which had been driven over a precipice of 120 feet by the Indians and perished; the water appeared to have washed away a part of this immence pile of slaughter and still their remained the fragments of at least a hundred carcases they created a most horrid stench. in this manner the Indians of the Missouri distroy vast herds of buffaloe at a stroke.

It was a ruthless affair, but it got the job done. Squandering enormous quantities of meat was simply not a problem for the nomadic people of the plains. There seemed to be endless amounts of the beasts.

The dwindling of the American bison began long before settlers arrived, but a swelling population of new migrants finally put the species at risk. And the intentional extermination of the herds to drive out the Plains Native Americans left the buffalo on the brink of annihilation. At one point, there were only 300 of them left in the wild.

Saved by a Free Society and Market Economics

Though the social and economic dynamics of the 19th century came close to wiping out the American bison, the species survived and began a recovery in the 20th century. The wild-roaming bison had been hunted mercilessly to the brink of destruction, but widespread private ownership allowed them to flourish.

Historian Larry Schweikart wrote about a study by Andrew C. Isenberg, now a professor at Temple University, which busted the myth that it was government intervention that saved the bison. From a small herd clinging to survival in Yellowstone National Park, the bison began their resurgence. Isenberg’s conclusion “upsets the entire apple cart of prior assumptions,” according to Schweikart:

This remnant herd and other scattered survivors might eventually have perished as well had it not been for the efforts of a handful of Americans and Canadians. These advocates of preservation were primarily Western ranchers who speculated that ownership of the few remaining bison could be profitable and elite Easterners possessed of a nostalgic urge to recreate . . . the frontier.

Preservation societies that aimed to maintain an authentic Western landscape, and travelling shows like Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, were instrumental in keeping the tiny bison population alive. They did a much better job of protecting these valuable assets than the public national parks.

But even more than as a tourist attraction, the bison became prized for the same reason Plains Native Americans and settlers hunted them to begin with: they’re delicious.

Isenberg’s study showed that the number of bison swelled in the 20th century mostly because they were “preserved not for their iconic significance in the interest of biological diversity but simply raised to be slaughtered for their meat.”

Ranchers like Charles Goodnight, who provided the herd reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park in 1902, found ways to raise and profit from the bison. This led to a thriving national industry and ensures the bison will survive into the 21st century. Today there are around 500,000 buffalo in the United States, and about 90 percent are in private hands. And for that miracle resurrection, the world has capitalism, not Congress, to thank.


Tale of Two Tribes: 'Climate Refugees' vs. EPA Victims

The left has concocted a lucrative category of politically correct victims: "climate refugees." It's the new Green racket.

U.S. taxpayers will now be forking over untold billions to ease the pain allegedly inflicted on "carbon's casualties" by industrial activity. By contrast, those who have suffered as a direct result of government incompetence by federal environmental bureaucrats continue to get the shaft.

Consider the plight of two tribes: the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw in Louisiana and the Navajo Nation in New Mexico.

The New York Times splashed a viral story on its pages this week spotlighting the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's $48 million grant to Native-Americans who live in the flood-ravaged coastal community of Isle de Jean Charles. About 60 residents, the majority of whom belong to the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw tribe, will be resettled to drier land.

That's a whopping $800,000 per "climate refugee!"

Never mind that the Times' propagandists themselves admit that erosion on the island began in 1955 as a result of land-use and land-management factors that had nothing to do with climate change.

"Channels cut by loggers and oil companies eroded much of the island," the paper reported, "and decades of flood control efforts have kept once free-flowing rivers from replenishing the wetlands' sediments."

Never mind that there are conflicting scientific analyses on the extent to which man-made greenhouses gases have caused sea levels to rise; whether the rate is accelerating; and how much, if any, reducing carbon emissions would actually mitigate purportedly rising sea levels.

Never mind that enviro-alarmists have conveniently changed their tune from blaming global warming for causing sea level rises to blaming global warming for causing sea level drops.

Oh, and never mind that many of the inhabitants of Isle de Jean Charles — whose forefathers originally moved there to escape forced government relocation under the 1830 Indian Removal Act — don't even want to leave and have fought resettlement efforts for decades.

Obama's social engineers are already plotting how to replicate the climate change relocation program. "We see this as setting a precedent for the rest of the country, the rest of the world," declared HUD official Marion McFadden, who is running the program.

Even worse, the United Nations is looking to preemptively "address extreme weather displacement" by targeting refugees even before any apocalyptic event has caused them to seek refuge.

Can you spell "manufacturing a crisis"?

While these meddling liberals conspire to displace one tribe in the name of saving the planet, another tribe is still begging for help after Obama's destructive EPA poisoned their waters.

It's been almost eight months since an Environmental Protection Agency contractor recklessly knocked a hole at the long-abandoned Gold King Mine in Colorado's San Juan Mountains. You should know that Washington has long schemed to declare it a Superfund site, which would increase its power, budget and access over the region.

A federally sponsored wrecking crew poking around in the mine last August triggered a 3 million-ton flood of bright orange gunk into the Animas River. EPA's blithering idiots delayed notifying local residents for 24 hours and downplayed the toxic spill's effects.

Downstream, the muck seeped into the San Juan River in New Mexico, where the Navajo Nation lives and farms. The impact on drinking water and livelihoods has been catastrophic. But the Obama administration refused the tribe's request for disaster relief from FEMA last fall and yanked emergency water tanks the EPA had supplied for Navajo livestock.

Navajo Nation chief Russell Begaye blasted the White House at the time for shirking its responsibilities.

"U.S. EPA caused this entire disaster, they have harmed the people, the water and the land. ... For years, we have consistently been at the receiving end of toxic spills and contamination with no adequate relief as the United States Government and Private Companies became wealthy off of the natural resources of the Navajo Nation."

Our eco-savior on the Potomac's response to the victims of his man-caused, government-engineered disaster: Never mind.


We are having an impact: the government has already begun removing links to its ‘Glacier Park glaciers disappearing’ sites

Roger Roots, J.D., Ph.D.

In the fall of 2015 I offered a bet of $5,000 if the glaciers at Glacier National Park disappear by 2030 (as predicted in all GNP signage, pamphlets, films and publications). See here. As of yet, no one has taken me up on my bet.

The Park’s glaciers were melting rapidly throughout the 1990s, as the catastrophic-manmade-global-warming-by-CO2 movement was riding high. Bills were introduced in Congress for “cap and trade” programs, carbon taxes and other reforms.

The National Park Service, and the U.S. Geological Survey published websites showing photos of the Park’s glaciers taken in prior decades next to more recent photos of the same glaciers. This ‘repeat photography’ showed massive decreases in the size of the GNP glaciers.

(I have often pointed out that the government’s photos from prior decades tended to not specify calendar dates. Because glaciers tend to build up in winter and then melt all summer long, the specificity of calendar dates is quite important.)

On January 8 of this year, I posted a prediction that the government would soon alter its GNP-glaciers-gone-by-2030 claims. See here. I asked, “What is the government going to do as 2030 approaches and it becomes clear that their preposterous claims are untrue?”

“I have no doubt,” I wrote then, “that the government will begin modifying these claims by 2025, if not sooner.” I began saving screenshots of government websites which make the claim that manmade-global-warming will melt the GNP glaciers by 2030.

It turns out I didn’t need to wait very long at all. Today, on May 4, 2016, I started looking for the government’s ‘repeat photography’ sites.


Today when you google “repeat photography” and “Glacier National Park,” you are redirected to general-info USGS sites with pictures of hikers in the mountains.

Fortunately, I have screenshots of the prior government projections.


Asbestos-laden building materials slipping into Australia as result of weak regulation, report finds

The whole asbestos scare is conventionally correct but is utter nonsense.  There has NEVER been any proof of harm from asbestos in building and other products.  The only people harmed by asbestos were those involved in mining, fabricating and installing it.  There has never been any harm to the general public from products in their environment that incorporate asbestos.  I spent a significasnt part of my childhood living in a house lined with unpainted asbestos sheeting ("Fibro"), as did countless other Australians.  It was once a very fashionable building material.  And none of us came to any harm from it.  Asbestos is one of the many things that are harmful only if your are exposed to large amounts of it

Glaring weaknesses in regulations and border protection issues are allowing building products contaminated with potentially deadly asbestos into Australia, a Senate committee has warned.

In an interim report tabled late on Wednesday, the committee raised particular concern about "the ability of Australia's enforcement agencies to effectively police borders so that [contaminated products] are detected and prevented from entering Australia".

"At the moment, this area of enforcement appears to require substantial strengthening and should be a high priority for government," it read.

"The importation of banned materials, such as asbestos, raises very serious concerns about the capacity of Australian authorities to deal with this issue, particularly in light of our open and dynamic trade environment."

The report notes only two importers have been fined over asbestos-laced building material since tougher penalties were imposed in February 2014.

It said fines of up to $170,000 could be imposed, but only $64,000 in fines, penalties and costs had been issued since 2009.

The committee said the role of foreign governments in stopping contaminated products from leaving their shores should also be considered.

It has requested the inquiry be extended for a fourth time, to September 30, 2016, "due to the seriousness of the problem and the disjointed regulation of the use of building products, both manufactured in Australia and overseas".



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5 May, 2016

Global warming is turning the oceans ACIDIC and dissolving parts of the Florida Keys reef, new study finds

This is a total pack of lies.  And not even clever ones.  The ocean is still alkaline, though perhaps a bit less so.  And, anyway, a warmer ocean would outgas CO2 and the carbonic acid that it forms, so a warmer ocean would be LESS acidic, not more acidic.  Do these guys know any physics at all?

Seawater, which is increasingly acidic due to global warming, is eating away the limestone framework for the coral reef of the upper Florida Keys, according to a new study.

Projections, based largely on laboratory studies, led scientists to predict that ocean pH would not fall low enough to cause reefs to start dissolving until 2050-2060.

However, a new study has found the process has already begun.

In the natural scheme of things in the spring and summer months, environmental conditions in the ocean, such as water temperature, light and seagrass growth, are favorable for the growth of coral limestone.

While, during the fall and winter, low light and temperature conditions along with the annual decomposition of seagrass, result in a slowing, or small-scale loss of reef growth.

However, as atmospheric CO2 is absorbed by seawater, ocean pH declines.

The result is that the natural summer growth cycle of coral is no longer large enough to offset the effects of dissolution from ocean acidification.

This is one of the first times scientists have documented long-term effects of ocean acidification on the foundation of the reefs, said study author Chris Langdon, a biological oceanographer at the University of Miami.

'This is what I would call a leading indicator; it's telling us about something happening early on before it's a crisis,' Langdon said.

'By the time you observe the corals actually crumbling, disappearing, things have pretty much gone to hell by that point.'

The northern part of the Florida Keys reef has lost about 12 pounds per square yard (6.5 kilograms per square meter) of limestone over the past six years, according to the study published in the journal Global Biogeochemical Cycles.

Over the length of the reef, that's more than 6 million tons.

The water eats away at the nooks and crannies of the limestone foundation, making them more porous and weaker, Langdon said.

So far the effect is subtle, not noticeable to the eye, and can only be detected by intricate chemical tests.

But as ocean acidification increases, scientists expect more reefs to dissolve and become flatter, and that fish will leave, Langdon said.

Also, increasing acidity eats away at the shells of the shellfish, making them easier prey for other fish and harder for humans to harvest.

Acidification occurs when oceans absorb more carbon dioxide from the air, altering seawater chemistry.

Scientists expected limestone to dissolve, but not until the second half of this century. It's about 40 years early, Langdon said.

'This is another one of those cases where we're finding that we're underestimate the level of damage caused by excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere,' said National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reef watch coordinator Mark Eakin, who wasn't part of the research.

But NOAA's Derek Manzello, a scientist in the ocean acidification program who studied the same area earlier, said it is difficult to blame the foundation loss just on ocean acidification, because long-term coral bleaching and death will also cause the limestone to dissolve.

There's a natural cycle of limestone production on reefs.

Limestone generally grows faster in the summer as the water become less acidic and ocean life absorbs carbon from the ocean.

But in the winter and fall, life dies off, carbon is released and the water becomes more acidic naturally, slowing or stopping limestone growth. But 'to actually see a negative was a big surprise,' Langdon said.

Extra, man-made carbon dioxide is being absorbed by the water and adding to its acidity.

And it's worse in the northern parts of the Keys, because the colder the water, the more carbon dioxide dissolves into it, Langdon said.

Reefs provide $2.8 billion a year to the Florida economy, mostly from tourists who come to dive and fish but also from commercial fishing, Langdon said.


Real World energy and climate

“The sky is falling” scare stories have no place in public interest science or policy

John Coleman

Earth Day 2016 brought extensive consternation about how our Earth will soon become uninhabitable, as mankind’s activities of civilization trigger unstoppable global warming and climate change. President Obama used the occasion to sign the Paris climate treaty and further obligate the United States to slash its fossil fuel use, carbon dioxide emissions and economic growth.

I love this little blue planet and do all I can to preserve it for my children and grandchildren.

If I thought for even a second that the civilized activities of mankind are producing a threat to our planet, I would spend the rest of my life correcting the problems. However, after devoting a decade to carefully studying mankind’s impact on our climate, I am firmly convinced that the entire global warming/climate change campaign is based on a failed scientific theory.

In short, there is no dangerous manmade climate change problem.

“Who cares about your scientific study,” many people respond. “This is about loving a native environment.  This is about escaping from the horrors of so called civilization.”

That response is understandable because for fifteen years the Greenpeace-Sierra Club crowd has been constantly decrying the “ugliness” of civilization: cars, planes, trains, trucks, factories, power plants and all the rest. It seems they think things were better in pre-industrial times, or perhaps the world of Tarzan or modern-day central Africa.

There certainly has been a steady barrage of “research” that finds everything going drastically wrong with Planet Earth because of our civilized life. The media join in, of course, proclaiming “the sky is falling,”  and Al Gore’s book, movie and “climate crisis tipping point” mantra stirred the media into an even bigger tizzy. Now almost the entire Democrat Party has climbed aboard.

As a result, billions of dollars in annual government funding keep the alarmist climate research and environmental campaigns marching on. Tens of billions more subsidize wind, solar and biofuel energy that is supposedly more “sustainable” and “climate friendly.”

Today, a high percentage of Americans accept climate change as a valid problem, even though the vast majority rate it at the bottom of their top ten or twenty concerns. Many accept news reports that tell us the United Nations through the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (UN IPCC) has “settled” the science in the last fifteen years.

In fact, President Obama and others say the matter is so proven that 97% of scientists agree on climate change. But this oft-quoted phrase has been totally debunked as fabricated or bait-and-switch. A group of scientists is asked, “Do you agree that Earth has warmed in recent years and Earth’s climate is changing?”

Probably every honest, competent scientist would answer “Yes.” But then the “survey” team changes the question to have them say, “Yes, humans are causing dangerous climate change.” Since 100% agreement would look suspicious, they back off a little and make it a “97% consensus.”

This leaves a somewhat David and Goliath situation for those of us climate experts who agree that Earth’s climate is changing, has always changed, and humans have some effects today – but do not believe that mankind’s emissions of plant-fertilizing carbon dioxide have replaced the powerful natural forces that have always driven climate change, or that any current or future changes must necessarily be dangerous or cataclysmic. We are frequently insulted and dismissed as Deniers.

Our side is not as small as the media may have you think. Many notable scientists totally reject claims of a manmade climate crisis. Over 31,000 have signed a statement that rejects the manmade global warming scare and says we see “no convincing evidence” that humans are causing dangerous climate change.  They and other experts have widely discredited the IPCC and other assertions about the climate.

There is even a Non-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC). It has published several impressive 4,000-page books of scientific papers that totally dismantle IPCC claims. The NIPCC’s Climate Change Reconsidered and other books are also published on-line.

Even the late, great author/physician/scientist Michael Crichton (of Jurassic Park fame) debunked global warming and wrote about it in his novel State of Fear.

Our fossil fuel, nuclear and hydroelectric powered civilization has made billions of lives much healthier, longer and more pleasant than in previous times. Heating and air conditioning, power for lights and computers and smart phones, and modern hospitals and schools are just a few of the blessings that bring incalculable value to our lives.  What we enjoy today is the result of hundreds of generations of hard working men and women, each one moving us forward by inches or miles.

In my 80s now, I think about the world into which I was born. Radio was just beginning. Phones were few and far between and very primitive, requiring hand cranks and operators. Cars and trucks were slow and produced awful soot, smoke, carbon monoxide and other pollutants. Factories, power plants and home furnaces fueled by dirty unprocessed coal with un-scrubbed smoke billowing from their chimneys, left us all in smoggy, unhealthy air.

Doctors had few medicines to offer, and only primitive x-ray devices to peer inside us. Jet airplanes, computers, televisions, rockets, satellites and so much more had not yet been invented. Most people died in their late 40s or 50s. In this one man’s lifetime, civilization has made amazing progress.

Now think about what life on Earth will be like when you are my age.  I predict the fossil fuel-powered society will have been replaced by systems only a few geniuses are even thinking about today. A long list of now fatal diseases will have been conquered, and people will live healthy life into their late nineties.

I predict our cars and planes will not need drivers or pilots, and space flight will become common. Robots will do much of the work, so people can enjoy their lives much, much more.

And I predict that anyone who looks back on the threat of climate change/global warming and all the threats to life on Earth will have a hearty laugh, as mankind will have progressed beyond accepting any such silliness.

Life is good. Enjoy it. And stop worrying about climate hobgoblins.

Via email: Weather Channel founder John Coleman is the original meteorologist on ABC’s Good Morning America. He has been studying weather and climate for over 60 years

Clinton Faux-Apologizes for Threatening Coal Jobs

Hillary Clinton has a knack for lying to the faces of the people who have been hurt by her policies. She did it with the families of the men killed in Benghazi, and she lied to a man laid off because he worked in the coal industry, an industry the Left considers not only expendable but condemnable. On Monday, the former coal miner accosted Clinton at a West Virginia campaign stop, asking Clinton about her comments in March when she warned, “We’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.” The man wanted to know: How could she say something like that and then tell voters in places like West Virginia that she’s their friend?

“What I said was [taken] totally out of context from what I meant,” Clinton backpedaled. “It was a misstatement, because what I was saying is that the way things are going now, we will continue to lose jobs.” But moments after she told the audience in March that coal jobs would be destroyed, she continued, “Now we’ve got to move away from coal and all the other fossil fuels.” So her threat was neither out of context nor a misstatement.

Clinton did apologize to the coal miner — for the way conservatives interpreted her comments. “I do feel a little bit sad and sorry that I gave folks the reason or the excuse to be so upset with me,” Clinton said, “because that is not what I intended at all.”

The day before this confrontation, Clinton told the attendees at an NAACP dinner in Detroit, “We cannot let Barack Obama’s legacy fall into Donald Trump’s hands. We can’t let all the hard work and progress we have achieved over the last seven and a half years be torn away.”

What is that legacy? In 2009, Obama promised the price of electricity “would necessarily skyrocket” thanks to his policies of pursuing “green” energy at the expense of fossil fuels. What followed next was the systematic destruction of the coal industry through regulation. Why do we want four more years of that? Why give Clinton the chance to make good on Obama’s promise to hamstring the energy sector of our nation?


A Real Bet for the Tough Guy in a Bow Tie

Joe Bastardi

BREAKING NEWS: Bill Nye issued a bet more than six years after my initial challenge to him in 2010 (which he would have lost) and four months into 2016 after reviewing the impact of El Niño on global temperatures. News flash, Bill: Midway through last year I said 2016 global temperatures would rise thanks to El Niño. I can forecast this because I don’t believe CO2 is a major player in determining global temperatures. I believe the sun, ocean cycles and stochastic events play a much more significant role.

Just so Bill and the rest of his brainwashed audience understand, I fully support our nation’s transition to clean and sustainable energy while using all sources of energy at our disposal now until a feasible economic transition can be accomplished. If you were really serious about it, we would be using more nuclear energy anyway.

However, I also believe the policies that Bill and the rest of the global warming political activists are pushing are detrimental to our economy and, in turn, our national security. How much money have we shipped to the Middle East because we did not use our own domestic fossil fuel resources? If not for the recent fossil fuel energy boom in the U.S., foreign countries would be making billions of dollars more at the expense of the U.S. consumer. I would argue that our failure to move more quickly and utilize our domestic fossil fuel resources has had catastrophic effects on our economy and national security.

Unlike Bill, I am a rational man, and I understand that while we must transition to clean energy we must do so in a way that is smart and economically viable.

Furthermore, we all know that Bill is not a forecaster. And since I am, I have a bet for the “science guy.” I believe 2017 will be colder than 2016. The bet is this: For 2017, every increment of .05 degrees Celsius (plus or minus compared to 2016) will be worth $10,000. If 2017 is 0.1 degrees Celsius warmer than 2016, I will pay you $20,000. If 2017 is 0.1 degrees Celsius colder, you owe me $20,000.

We do it with Dr. Roy Spencer’s satellite measurements.

The satellite data cannot be manipulated as we have seen in a culture among AGW scientists. (Remember “Climategate”?)

Furthermore, since you say global warming is proven science, how about we take all the money allocated for AGW research and use it to improve veterans health benefits. We wouldn’t be allocating all that research money to study whether the earth is flat/round, would we? Or we could stop that AGW gravy train and use the money allocated to professors around the world for improving fusion output. Make sense?

One more thing. I challenge Bill to lead by example and for one year use no fossil fuels, including products that use fossil fuels to be made. He can be like the DirecTV commercial in which a settler is settling in a world void of fossil fuels.

See you Dec. 31, 2017, Bill. One of us will pay up.


Kimmel Airs 'F-Bomb' Clip to Mock Climate Skeptic Film He Didn't Even See

When critics trash a film, they’ve usually actually seen it – but, not ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel. So, the filmmaker of movie debunking climate hysteria is challenging Kimmel to attend a private screening.

The “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” host used seven minutes of his Monday show to mock a climate skeptic’s film he obviously hadn’t seen – since he repeats the very alarmist talking points the film debunks.

Kimmel bashed “Climate Hustle,” a climate skeptic film that aired in 400 theaters nationwide Monday, by making misleading, unsupportable, and inaccurate claims, and personally attacking Gov. Sarah Palin for supporting the film.

He then aired a two-minute climate change advocacy “message” featuring scientists dropping the “F-Bomb” to insult anyone skeptical of man-made climate change.

Kimmel’s rant against “Climate Hustle” displays a complete ignorance of the content of the film – and deploys the same shopworn deceitful and mean-spirited tactics the film exposes and addresses.

In “Climate Hustle”:

Former U.N. Climatologist Roger Pielke, Sr. explains how, since alarmists can’t debate the facts, they attack the messenger (as Kimmel personally insults Palin and the scientists drop the F-Bomb on skeptics),

The “97% scientific consensus” claim Kimmel cites is revealed to be the product of slanted methodology – one of which didn’t even poll 97 scientists,

Kimmel’s “hottest years ever” claim is dismantled and debunked,
The Big Money driving climate influence is shown to be on the activist side – in terms of grants, research funding, alarmist advocacy, etc. – not, as Kimmel claims, coming from corporate “polluters,” and

Renowned dissenting scientists (including a Nobel Laureate and a moon-mission astronaut) share data and analysis debunking climate hysteria – not the ignorant, average slobs Kimmel accuses his dissenting viewers of being.

In response to Kimmel’s uninformed, agenda-driven rant on national television, “Climate Hustle” producer, writer and host Marc Morano is challenging Kimmel to view the film.

Morano tells MRCTV:

“It is obvious Mr. Kimmel has not seen 'Climate Hustle' or he would have known better than to recite the same propaganda litany of climate 'facts' which the movie deals with head-on. Using a video of cursing scientists warning of a tired litany of doom, using terms like 'apocalyptic'; 'catastrophic'; and 'extremely dire' was bland and predictable and the very reason that ‘Climate Hustle’ was made.

"Apparently, Kimmel thinks failure to believe in man-made global warming fears is akin to not believing in gravity or yogurt. Odd.

“Mr. Kimmel, I challenge you to watch 'Climate Hustle' and issue an apology for your climate pabulum that you spewed to viewers. 'Climate Hustle' was made to counter the very boilerplate rants that you, Mr. Kimmel, engaged in. The public needs to view 'Climate Hustle' if, for no other reason, than to hear Mr. Kimmel's climate talking points dismantled.

“Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.”
“If Jimmy Kimmel is actually interested in the facts, he’ll step up and watch the film, instead of continuing to recite inaccurate, fear-mongering clichés on blind faith,” Morano added.


Electric cars good for Australian miners

Due to the unprecedented interest in electric cars and renewable batteries, lithium miners are developing new projects across the state.

In the middle of iron ore country is one of the greatest discoveries of the sought-after resource, with Pilbara Minerals' Pilgangoora mine set to go into construction later this year.

It is one of 20 companies working to get lithium mining projects up and running in Western Australia.

"We are in essence going to be the world's number one lithium producer," Ken Brinsden, CEO of Pilbara Minerals, told 9NEWS.

The mine has promised hundreds of new jobs for unemployed FIFO workers. 

"(There is) excitement in the mining industry.  A commodity in demand and as result fantastic opportunities for Western Australia," Mr Brinsden said.

The interest in lithium is being pushed by the sales of electric cars, which currently account for three percent of the motor vehicle market and expected to reach 22 percent of the market by 2025.

Tesla is leading the charge — in a month it has already pre-sold 400,000 of the Model 3 electric car, even though it won't be released until 2018.

"Electric vehicles are coming," Kevin Johnson from Argonaut said.

"There is nothing you can do about it."



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


4 May, 2016

Global warming could turn Middle East and Northern Africa into 'dead zones' for humans and force 500 million people to relocate

Indeed it could.  The guy below could fly too. 

The stuff below is just another prophecy from the worst prophets in history.  Even Jehovah's Witnesses did better at prophecy.  At least they rightly predicted 1914 as a turning-point year.  Every time Warmists give a specific year for something they goof hilariously.  The stuff below is just more modelling crap.  No new facts at all.

But even if by some miracle their prophecies are correct, why worry?  A big temperature rise would open up coastal Antarctica, Northern Canada and Siberia -- which could provide more human living space than ever

The academic journal article is "Strongly increasing heat extremes in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in the 21st century"

A new study has warned that rising global temperatures could render large swathes of the Middle East and North Africa too hot for humans.

Experts say the future of humanity is these areas is 'in jepoardy' and say it could affect up to 500 million people.

Researchers found the number of extremely hot days in the region has doubled since 1970.

By the end of the century, midday temperatures on hot days could even climb to 50 degrees Celsius (approximately 122 degrees Fahrenheit).

Another finding: Heat waves could occur ten times more often than they do now. By mid-century, 80 instead of 16 extremely hot days.

'In future, the climate in large parts of the Middle East and North Africa could change in such a manner that the very existence of its inhabitants is in jeopardy,' says Jos Lelieveld, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry and Professor at the Cyprus Institute.

Lelieveld and his team concluded that ven if Earth's temperature were to increase on average only by two degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial times, the temperature in summer in these regions will increase more than twofold.

By mid-century, during the warmest periods, temperatures will not fall below 30 degrees at night, and during daytime they could rise to 46 degrees Celsius (approximately 114 degrees Fahrenheit).

By the end of the century, midday temperatures on hot days could even climb to 50 degrees Celsius (approximately 122 degrees Fahrenheit).

Another finding: Heat waves could occur ten times more often than they do now. By mid-century, 80 instead of 16 extremely hot days

In addition, the duration of heat waves in North Africa and the Middle East will prolong dramatically.
Between 1986 and 2005, it was very hot for an average period of about 16 days, by mid-century it will be unusually hot for 80 days per year.

At the end of the century, up to 118 days could be unusually hot, even if greenhouse gas emissions decline again after 2040.

'If mankind continues to release carbon dioxide as it does now, people living in the Middle East and North Africa will have to expect about 200 unusually hot days, according to the model projections,' says Panos Hadjinicolaou, Associate Professor at the Cyprus Institute and climate change expert.

Atmospheric researcher Jos Lelieveld is convinced that climate change will have a major impact on the environment and the health of people in these regions. 'Climate change will significantly worsen the living conditions in the Middle East and in North Africa.

Prolonged heat waves and desert dust storms can render some regions uninhabitable, which will surely contribute to the pressure to migrate,' said Jos Lelieveld.


Some welcome doubts about the effects of methane

Methane has no climate effects at all.  All the wavelengths it absorbs are also absorbed -- and hence masked -- by the much more plentiful water vapour. Chris Mooney below has not yet got that far, though he is getting close

I might point out in passing that when Mooney claims below that CO2 lasts for thousands of years in the atmosphere, he is being conventional rather than scientific.  Both radioactive and stable carbon isotopes show that the real atmospheric CO2 average residence time (lifetime) is only about 5 years.  The thousand-year figure was just dreamt up by Warmists to suit their models.

Even sly old John Cook admits the 5 year residence figure for CO2 but says its effects are more long-lasting than that because most of the loss of CO2 is due to dissolution into the oceans and the ocean promptly gives another CO2 molecule back when that happens.  But why would it?  If the ocean is absorbing CO2 from the air it is obviously not saturated for CO2 and would therefore have no impulse to release CO2

It’s perhaps the most contentious issue in U.S. climate change policy right now: How can we deal with emissions of methane, a powerful if short-lived greenhouse gas, which has many sources but appears to be leaking into the air in considerable volumes from U.S. oil and gas operations?

The Obama administration is expected to release new methane regulations for new sources of emissions soon, and the EPA recently revised upwards, considerably, its estimates of how much methane is leaking into the atmosphere from the U.S. energy industry. And yet at the same time, there remains considerable scientific uncertainty and debate over just how much methane the U.S. is emitting and how much that has changed due to the current oil and gas boom — and over what those emissions even mean.

A new study in Nature Climate Change, for instance, gets at why understanding the importance of methane can be such a difficult, confusing affair. In particular, it takes issue with some of the math that has often been used to compare the consequences of emitting methane with the impact of the chief, long-lived global warming gas, carbon dioxide. And it finds that really, we may not even know how important our methane emissions are in the first place until we also know how quickly we’re able to get carbon dioxide under control.

“People are placing too much emphasis on methane,” says Raymond Pierrehumbert, a climate scientist at the University of Oxford and one of the paper’s authors. “And really, people should prove that we can actually get the CO2 emissions down first, before worrying about whether we are doing enough to get methane emissions down.”

The study was led by Myles Allen, also of Oxford, with colleagues from several other UK universities as well as institutions in Norway and New Zealand.

The key problem addressed by the study is that greenhouse gases are all different, and yet nonetheless, policymakers and analysts have a tendency to pool them all together by using a common metric, “carbon dioxide equivalents.” Thus, according to the EPA, while in 2014 the U.S. emitted 5.556 billion tons of carbon dioxide, it emitted 6.871 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalents — the number rises because of the inclusion of emissions of methane, nitrous oxide and other greenhouse gases.

But all of these gases are different — after a pulse of methane is emitted into the atmosphere, half of it is no longer there after 8.3 years, and then only a quarter is left after another 8.3 years, and so on. That’s very different from the behavior of a pulse emission of carbon dioxide, some of which remains in the atmosphere for thousands of years.

The usual way to convert emissions of methane, black carbon, and other so-called short lived climate pollutants into carbon dioxide equivalents involves calculating their “global warming potential” over 100 years — thus, according to EPA, methane has 28 to 36 times as much warming impact as the same amount of carbon dioxide over a century. But the new study in Nature Climate Change finds that because methane has a shorter atmospheric life than carbon dioxide, the truth is that this gas — along with black carbon and various hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs — really has an impact over 20 to 40 years, rather than 100. (The calculation is actually for all uses of the global warming potential approach, not just for methane.)

“The appearance of 100 years in the name of the metric really deceives a lot of people into thinking this is telling us something about temperature 100 years out, whereas it’s not,” says Pierrehumbert.

All of this may seem technical, but here’s why it matters. Governments are struggling to keep global temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial averages, and would prefer holding it to 1.5 degrees — which means eventually bringing carbon dioxide emissions to zero. If the temperature peaks soon, say by the year 2050, then controlling the warming caused by methane, and other short-lived climate pollutants like black carbon, would mean a lower total peak temperature, the new study finds. In that case, these emissions definitely matter.

But if we don’t get carbon dioxide under control and peak emissions by 2050, the new study suggests, then today’s methane emissions become irrelevant. They simply won’t be causing warming any longer. But a significant amount of the carbon dioxide we emit today will still be in the atmosphere.


Resettling the First American ‘Climate Refugees’ (!)

There is a lachrymose story from the NYT  below that is big on "color" and very light on science.  You are supposed to believe that climate change has drowned the homes of a simple native people and Uncle Sam has stepped in to lend a hand.  But the problem concerned is nothing to do with climate change.  Subsidence is common in parts of the U.S. East coast and this is just one example of it.  It is a geophysical phenomenon, not a climate phenomenon.  No wonder the article was light on the science of it

Each morning at 3:30, when Joann Bourg leaves the mildewed and rusted house that her parents built on her grandfather’s property, she worries that the bridge connecting this spit of waterlogged land to Louisiana’s terra firma will again be flooded and she will miss another day’s work.

Ms. Bourg, a custodian at a sporting goods store on the mainland, lives with her two sisters, 82-year-old mother, son and niece on land where her ancestors, members of the Native American tribes of southeastern Louisiana, have lived for generations. That earth is now dying, drowning in salt and sinking into the sea, and she is ready to leave.

With a first-of-its-kind “climate resilience” grant to resettle the island’s native residents, Washington is ready to help.

“Yes, this is our grandpa’s land,” Ms. Bourg said. “But it’s going under one way or another.”

In January, the Department of Housing and Urban Development announced grants totaling $1 billion in 13 states to help communities adapt to climate change, by building stronger levees, dams and drainage systems.

One of those grants, $48 million for Isle de Jean Charles, is something new: the first allocation of federal tax dollars to move an entire community struggling with the impacts of climate change. The divisions the effort has exposed and the logistical and moral dilemmas it has presented point up in microcosm the massive problems the world could face in the coming decades as it confronts a new category of displaced people who have become known as climate refugees.

“We’re going to lose all our heritage, all our culture,” lamented Chief Albert Naquin of the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw, the tribe to which most Isle de Jean Charles residents belong. “It’s all going to be history.”

Amiya Brunet, 3, on the bridge that leads to her home, which fills with up to a foot of mud during storms. Her parents, Keith Brunet and Keisha McGehee, would like to leave the island.

“The changes are underway and they are very rapid,” Interior Secretary Sally Jewell warned last week in Ottawa. “We will have climate refugees.”

The Isle de Jean Charles resettlement plan is one of the first programs of its kind in the world, a test of how to respond to climate change in the most dramatic circumstances without tearing communities apart. Under the terms of the federal grant, the island’s residents are to be resettled to drier land and a community that as of now does not exist. All funds have to be spent by 2022.


Tiny plankton are big travelers, making them likely to ride out global warming

Drift in ocean currents impacts intergenerational microbial exposure to temperature

Martina A. Doblina and Erik van Sebille


Microbes are the foundation of marine ecosystems [Falkowski PG, Fenchel T, Delong EF (2008) Science 320(5879):1034–1039]. Until now, the analytical framework for understanding the implications of ocean warming on microbes has not considered thermal exposure during transport in dynamic seascapes, implying that our current view of change for these critical organisms may be inaccurate. Here we show that upper-ocean microbes experience along-trajectory temperature variability up to 10 °C greater than seasonal fluctuations estimated in a static frame, and that this variability depends strongly on location. These findings demonstrate that drift in ocean currents can increase the thermal exposure of microbes and suggests that microbial populations with broad thermal tolerance will survive transport to distant regions of the ocean and invade new habitats. Our findings also suggest that advection has the capacity to influence microbial community assemblies, such that regions with strong currents and large thermal fluctuations select for communities with greatest plasticity and evolvability, and communities with narrow thermal performance are found where ocean currents are weak or along-trajectory temperature variation is low. Given that fluctuating environments select for individual plasticity in microbial lineages, and that physiological plasticity of ancestors can predict the magnitude of evolutionary responses of subsequent generations to environmental change [Schaum CE, Collins S (2014) Proc Biol Soc 281(1793):20141486], our findings suggest that microbial populations in the sub-Antarctic (?40°S), North Pacific, and North Atlantic will have the most capacity to adapt to contemporary ocean warming.

doi: 10.1073/pnas.1521093113

Twilight of the Climate Change Movement

The UN’s climate summit in Paris at the end of 2015 concluded with a bang. The world’s governments promised sweeping cuts in carbon emissions. Rich countries promised to help poor ones with $100 billion per year in climate assistance. President Obama quickly declared the agreement “the best chance we have to save the one planet we’ve got.” The consensus quickly jelled that this was a major, historic achievement.

Then came the fizzle: The agreement is non-binding. Secretary of State John Kerry asserted on NBC’s Meet the Press that compliance would be enforced through the “powerful weapon” of public shaming, apparently implying a policy of verbal confrontation toward states that fall short.

The Danish scientist Bjørn Lomborg, a prominent critic of the top-down international conference approach to climate change, called the Paris agreement the “costliest in history” if implemented. According to Lomborg, the agreement would “reduce temperatures by 2100 by just 0.05 degrees Celsius (0.09 degrees Fahrenheit)…. This is simply cynical political theater, meant to convince us that our leaders are taking serious action…a phenomenally expensive but almost empty gesture.”

NASA scientist Jim Hansen, one of the earliest proponents of the idea that global warming is manmade, slammed the deal as “half-assed and half-baked,” a “fake,” and a “fraud.”

Hansen’s assessment is probably close to the mark—and he and his fellow alarmists have only themselves to blame. While those who flatly deny the possibility of any global warming can be readily brushed aside, the alarmists have been much too quick to dismiss legitimate questions about precisely what the evidence shows. Indeed, they have frequently treated such questions as heresies to be persecuted, adopting an even more virulently anti-scientific mindset than the one they accuse others of.

Meanwhile, on the policy side, the alarmists’ call for worldwide economic controls, including caps on fossil fuels, are largely recycled from previous scientific doomsday fads, such as the oil scarcity scare of the late 1970s.

Despite the enormous costs these policies would impose, especially on poor countries, they would do virtually nothing to stop anthropogenic climate change, let alone protect anyone from relentless natural climate change that is one of our planet’s most prominent and inescapable features.

They are also distracting attention both from investments that would make society less vulnerable to climate change, and from a more pressing crisis, namely the extinction of a large fraction of the world’s plant and animal species due to widespread modification of natural habitat.

Don’t be fooled by the fanfare in Paris: The climate change movement faces big trouble ahead. Its principal propositions contain two major fallacies that can only become more glaring with time. First, in stark contrast to popular belief and to the public statements of government officials and many scientists, the science on which the dire predictions of manmade climate change is based is nowhere near the level of understanding or certainty that popular discourse commonly ascribes to it.

Second, and relatedly, the movement’s embrace of an absolute form of the precautionary principle distorts rational cost-benefit analysis, or throws it out the window altogether.

As the costs of decarbonization start to hit home, and the public demands greater certainty about the benefits to be gained, the public—and particularly those industries that are hardest hit—will invest in scientific research, in the hopes of achieving a more granular cost-benefit analysis.

Something similar is happening to proposed listings under the Endangered Species Act—where major economic interests are threatened, they have responded with enormous investments in scientific research in order to show either that the species in question is not in danger, or that it can be protected by measures far short of the often draconian prohibitions imposed pursuant to the Act.

These factors will almost certainly produce a more nuanced and less messianic view of the climate problem, with solutions aimed to maximize “bang for the buck” at the margins, where climate threats are most grave, rather than reordering human society in order to “save” a planet that, in the grand scheme of things, is quite indifferent to the state of the climate at any given time.

All sides of the climate change debate have a huge incentive to generate more and better climate science: the alarmists and their more skeptical colleagues all want to prove their points. As our scientific understanding improves, many of the propositions we hear today will have to be modified, and many will be refuted, as has always happened in the history of science.

The scientific community may at times be powerfully resistant to revision of its received wisdoms; it took an entire generation for medical professionals to accept the germ theory of disease, despite the fact that the evidence in its favor generated by Pasteur and Koch was clear from the start. But better science wins out in the end.

The greater clarity that better science will bring will open up new opportunities to solve environmental problems both known and unknown, and not a moment too soon. The human race faces challenges that cannot effectively be met at a local or even a national level. These challenges will not be met by a wholesale reordering of human society from the top down, as many of the more authoritarian-minded environmentalists wish. Any attempt to impose command-economy solutions on a global scale will fall far short or outright fail, as the Paris agreement and its precursors show.

The right strategy for confronting environmental challenges will have to be based on rational market incentives, rational cost-benefit analysis, and a broad-based consensus about the vital importance of efficient markets. Strategies that distort rational cost-benefit analysis (or the science on which it is based) to suit an anti-market agenda will not work and can only maintain the illusion of legitimacy for so long before they are discredited.


Australia: Two carbon taxes in Labor's climate policy suite

Australia is having an election this year too -- a couple of months before the American one

Labor will exempt the electricity sector from its broader emissions trading scheme hoping to limit the hit to the consumer wallet.

Instead, the sector will have its own ETS with an internal carbon market which Labor believes will reduce the impact on power prices.

The opposition's climate change policy - which it will take to the next election - also focuses on a transition away from coal-fired power stations.

Labor wants an orderly, structured phase out of high-polluting energy generators with a support program to transition workers into new industries.

Opposition environment spokesman Mark Butler insists the plan is not a reincarnated carbon tax, while maintaining it's necessary to get Australia's pollution levels under control.

"Labor heard a very clear message from the Australian people about the carbon tax," Mr Butler told reporters in south-west Queensland.

But Environment Minister Greg Hunt said Labor was kidding itself that its ETS was not a carbon tax - which the coalition scrapped upon coming into government.

The policy reaffirms Labor's commitment to 50 per cent of the nation's power coming from renewable sources by 2030 and an emissions reduction target of 45 per cent by the same year.

It focuses on reducing land clearing, while aiming to double energy productivity through measures such as smarter buildings.

The ETS would be implemented in two phases - with the first requiring heavy polluters to offset any emissions above a set cap.

From 2020, an ongoing scheme will be in place - but the details won't be sorted until the next term of government, should Labor be elected.

Labor says it wants to get Australia back to the renewable energy superpower it was in 2013. © AAP Image/Glenn Hunt Labor says it wants to get Australia back to the renewable energy superpower it was in 2013. Opposition Leader Bill Shorten warned of increased insurance premiums, inconsistent food supply and a loss of tourism and jobs if nothing is done to limit climate change.

"Australia is now pretty much the only advanced economy on earth where pollution is rising rather than coming down," Mr Shorten told reporters on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who supported the introduction of an emissions trading scheme in 2009 when he was opposition leader, said Labor's plan would raise energy prices.

However, he conceded the coalition's 26-28 per cent target by 2030 would have to rise over coming decades.

The plan has been broadly welcomed by climate groups who believe it could help Australia reach its international obligations under last year's United Nations climate agreement.

In December, 196 parties - including China, India and the United States - agreed to limit global warming to two degrees.

Energy market analysts Reputex modelling shows phasing out coal-fired power stations would have a negligible impact on electricity prices.

However, the peak mining body says the policy puts at risk Australia's export competitiveness by eliminating the "cheapest form" of domestic electricity.

"The inevitable consequences of these policy choices will be higher power prices," Minerals Council of Australia chief executive Brendan Pearson said.

Greens leader Richard Di Natale questioned why Labor's policy was silent on coal exports, accusing all major parties of being beholden to the coal industry.

Labor has also promised to expand the investment mandate of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, retain the Climate Change Authority and pump an extra $200 million into ARENA.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


3 May, 2016

Some amusing Green/Left rage

Andrew Lane is a graduate student at Arizona State University.  He also has a business installing solar panels.  So he has reason to be unhappy with those who question global warming.  If skepticism took firmer hold, it would damage his business. So what does he do about that?  Does he carefully examine the issues and then plan appropriately?  No.  In a typically Leftist way, he goes ballistic at Marc Morano, a prominent skeptic. Morano received the following messages from him.  It is clearly hate speech and a violation of ASU speech codes.  He could be in trouble over that.  He sent the abuse from his ASU address:

First comment:

Hey Fat Head... Marc "Moran" O...I just bought "Merchants of Doubt" and saw what threatening nonsense you wrote real scientists.  I thought I would return the favor to you.  Hmmm why is it we keep setting high temperature records?  Hmmm why it is many coastal cities like Miami, Norfolk, and Cape Canaveral are complaining about rising seas?  Why does the Arctic and Antarctic Land Ice continue to melt away with less left year after year?  I would love to debate your candy ass in front of a crowd. You are an ignorant sap who revels in his own stupidity.  Maybe it is you who should Fuck Off and Die....Maybe then you could be composted to become fertilizer for plant life.  That may be the only way you can be productive.  Ohhh I can hardly wait to see your new Un-Documentary "Climate Hustle"...will it be on YouTube the day of release?  There is no way I will ever pay you one damned cent to see it. Though I would accept payment from you to see it.  How about you pay me $20 to come to a premier near Phoenix?  I'll even come in my Electric Car and maybe I can park out in front of the theater in case anyone would like to learn how they too can drive 100 miles for about a dollar in fuel.  Hmmmm I still haven't heard of an Electricity Spill that ruined a Gulf of Mexico, a pristine area of Alaska or detonated on a sleepy Canadian Town have you?

Morano replied: "Your comments are hurtful. And if you believe Merchants of Doubt is factual about me, you are very gullible"

Reply to Morano from Lane:

Right On There Amigo "Moran-O" the Environmental Journalist,

Or should I say an Anti-Environmental Journalist...that would be a much more accurate description of your activities. 

And your comments in "Merchants of Doubt" to Dr. Katherine Hayhoe, Dr. Micheal Mann, Dr. James Hansen and others were far more hurtful, offensive, vulgar, and violent.    Or was it messages from your brainless followers after you posted their email addresses on your website and encouraged them to do such? If you are so brave why don't you go to their places of work and recite those phrases and see how far you get. Ohh I've learned in the School of Sustainability at ASU now that your brainless followers who think Global Warming is a Hoax are now down to 10%. Good luck with that Ohhh so large fanbase! Hey if if you all are so powerful let's see you hold a 400,000 person rally in NYC. For that matter lets see you hold a 40,000 person rally anywhere you want in the name of the Fossil Fools.

Yeah I'm the gullible one when "Merchants of Doubt" has dear Fred Singer speaking the three talking points of Climate Denial. That there is no Global Warming, then there is Global Warming but it's not caused by Humans, and then there is Global Warming but it would wreck the economy if we tried to do anything about it! Hmmmm which is it there Chum? Your followers are the gullible ones clinging to a loud mouth like you.

So then mighty master mind... why is it we keep setting high temperature records?   Why it is many coastal cities like Miami, Norfolk, and Cape Canaveral are complaining about rising seas?  Why does the Arctic and Antarctic Land Ice continue to melt away with less left year after year?

You Conservative Clowns who are too Conservative to Conserve anything would be just plain funny if the consequences weren't so severe. Say what is your science background and education since you play one on television so often as you state so smugly.

Boy you guys are going to get slaughtered come November. I can hardly wait to see the GOP who can't quite grasp reality of Climate Action get unelected!  Say did you catch how many people blindly laid down $1,000 each to reserve a car purchase for a car no one has seen, heard, or touched and won't even be available for a year and a half?  Hmmmm 115,000 folks did before hand. Name one other item, much less a car, that capitalism has produced that has sold more in such a short amount of time. Ohhh and now the Reservation Line has grown closer to 400K after Elon Musk unveiled it in California. Again name one item that that sort of sales record at any point in history or since the Industrial Revolution.

I've seen your meeting with Dr. Bill Nye the Science Guy. Why is it again you feel you know more about the atmosphere and oceans than him? That you can holler louder than him? Just like Tobacco, one day it will be common knowledge how treacherous and bad fossil fuels are as well as all excess Green House Gas Emissions from all their sources. The question is how fast we can get to that point, and will it be too late? It may be beyond your scope but the amount of Green House Gasses now frozen under the thawing tundra and permafrost is quite substantial. Indeed it's about a century of today's emissions.  Hmmm how fast will it escape?

Again try to stay in your lane and leave the Scientists alone. You might want to change your Kids last name too....Morano might well become notorious with the Chief Climate Denier and how many lives it ruined for so long.

The various claims he makes have in the past all been dealt  with on this blog and many others.  He is in a way a victim.  He has founded his business on a mistaken belief.  He has been taken for a ride by Warmism

The latest Warmist scare: Oxygen deprivation

There are out at the moment any number of reports saying that the oceans are running out of oxygen and all the fish are going to die soon.  So I decided to look at the scientific paper the whole scare is based on. Its abstract is below.  Its theoretical underpinnings are fair enough.  Warm water DOES contain less gas than cold water. 

But that theory doesn't get us far.  The warmest waters on earth are of course in the tropics.  So they should contain less oxygen.  So how come tropical waters are teeming with life?  Probably because the very vigorous photosynthesis there is continually pouring oxygen into the water.  In Australian waters, it is the most Northerly part of the Great Barrier reef (the part closest to the equator) that has the greatest species diversity, for instance.

So much for theory.  Let us look at what the paper actually says. They claim NO global effects so far at all.  What they claim, rather laughably, is a possibility of detection.  And they put even that well ahead in the future:  "widespread detection of forced deoxygenation is possible by 2030–2040".  Nothing to give even the most dedicated Warmist an erection there

Finding forced trends in oceanic oxygen

Matthew C. Long et al.


Anthropogenically forced trends in oceanic dissolved oxygen are evaluated in Earth system models in the context of natural variability. A large ensemble of a single Earth system model is used to clearly identify the forced component of change in interior oxygen distributions and to evaluate the magnitude of this signal relative to noise generated by internal climate variability. The time of emergence of forced trends is quantified on the basis of anomalies in oxygen concentrations and trends. We find that the forced signal should already be evident in the southern Indian Ocean and parts of the eastern tropical Pacific and Atlantic basins; widespread detection of forced deoxygenation is possible by 2030–2040. In addition to considering spatially discrete metrics of detection, we evaluate the similarity of the spatial structures associated with natural variability and the forced trend. Outside of the subtropics, these patterns are not wholly distinct on the isopycnal surfaces considered, and therefore, this approach does not provide significantly advanced detection. Our results clearly demonstrate the strong impact of natural climate variability on interior oxygen distributions, providing an important context for interpreting observations.


North Atlantic Heat Content Plunges… Meteorologist Warns Of “Serious Implications” On US Climate, Sea Ice!

Paul Donan of the excellent weather science site Vencore Weather here brings us up to date on the latest on one of the most powerful natural cycles driving our North Atlantic climate: North Atlantic sea surface temperature (SST) cycles.

In a nutshell the site writes that the North Atlantic “is now showing signs of a possible long-term shift back to colder-than-normal sea surface temperatures (SST) and this could have serious implications on US climate and sea ice areal extent in the Northern Hemisphere”.

Vencore supplies the following chart of North Atlantic heat content (0 – 700 meters deep):

The next chart Vencore provides below is one of Atlantic sea surface temperature (SST) since the 1870s.

Clearly we see that huge climate driver has been cyclic and that the past 20 years have been marked by very warm SSTs.

Little wonder the North Atlantic region has been seen warmer than normal conditions over the past 2 decades.

But that warmth appears to be waning as the North Atlantic is now heading toward its cool phase. That cooling down is confirmed by the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC).  Note how the transitions take place quickly, in a matter of just a few years.

Vencore writes that the North Atlantic cooling is likely going to have some “significant impacts on Northern Hemisphere (NH) sea ice areal extent over the coming decades“, and thus could be a major blow to climate science forecasts of a melting Arctic. If the North Atlantic cooling continues, then Vencore warns we should expect Arctic sea ice to return to 1990s levels, if not even greater.

The cooling North Atlantic will also have serious ramifications for North America’s climate. Vencore reports that winters over large parts of North America are much colder during cool North Atlantic phases, and significantly warmer during the warm phases. So if these trends should continue, it means that the days of the global warming scare are numbered, or they will have to move to the other hemisphere.


New movie characterizes social agenda as con job intended to take control of money, politics

Decades ago, scientists warned that the Earth’s average temperatures were rising, polar ice fields were shrinking and the very survival of the planet was at stake.

Now, it seems that the public hears fewer references to facts and many more declarations of what people believe about “climate change.”

As in faith.  As in religion.

In a one-night nationwide theatrical engagement on Monday, a new movie, “Climate Hustle,” aims to pull back the veil on a movement that even some of its supporters concede has taken on religious overtones.

Hosted by Marc Morano, a former Republican political aide who founded and runs the climate-skeptic website, the move exposes “the history of climate scares including global cooling; debunks outrageous claims about temperatures, extreme weather, and the so-called ‘consensus;’ exposes the increasingly shrill calls to ‘act immediately before it’s too late,’ and in perhaps the film’s most important section, profiles key scientists who used to believe in climate alarm but have since converted to skepticism.”

Morano said on his website the movie shows “the climate establishment comparing climate skeptics to Holocaust deniers.”

“It’s all an attempt to silence the debate, to silence any science and go right to centralized planning,” he said. “That’s what this is all about. The U.N. has admitted their goal is wealth redistribution and it doesn’t have anything to do with environmental policy.”

To learn where the movie is showing near you, and to buy tickets, visit

In an interview with WND, Morano affirmed the end goal of “climate change” activists is money and control.

Their intent now is not to discuss, investigate or research, but to send “a chilling message to doubters and skeptics” to be silent.

“It’s always the same solution, more centralized government; the bureaucrats, the intellectual elites in charge, they know best,” he said. “These storms … they’re going to come and get you.”

But, he said, the solution is at hand, according to the elites: “If you pay up now, put us in charge, we can protect you.”

He said the result will be tragic for large populations who are being denied access to pumped water, power and heat because of climate-change believers’ antagonism to carbon-based fuels.

“The reason we know there’s a hustle is their predictions have failed to come true, on a whole host of issues,” Morano said. “That’s why they now want to stop the debate, suppress debate.”

Famous predictions

One of the more famous predictions came from former vice president and current carbon-credit entrepreneur Al Gore, who told an audience in a 2009 speech that “the entire north polar ice cap during some of the summer months could be completely ice-free within the next five to seven years.”

His 2006 documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth,” famously predicted increasing temperatures would cause earth’s oceans to rise by 20 feet, a claim many scientists say is utterly without rational basis.

Another came from a 2013 column by Mark Hertsgaard, which was headlined “The End of the Arctic? Ocean Could be Ice Free by 2015.”

He wrote: “Say goodbye to polar bears and a whole lot of ice. New research suggests the Arctic Ocean could be ice-free by 2015, with devastating consequences for the world. Can it be stopped?”

Taking one more step back in time, the BBC said Arctic summers would be ice-free by 2013.

Sierra Club Canada also said in 2013 that the Arctic sea ice would vanish that year.

Tim Ball, a former University of Winnipeg climatology professor, said global temperatures have been dropping since the turn of the century, prompting the change in terminology from “global warming” to “climate change.”

Activists are also spending less time discussing temperatures and more time pointing to more extreme events such as tornadoes, droughts, cold snaps and heat waves. Ball said there’s a shred of truth there, but it’s being badly distorted.

“Yes, there’s been slightly more extremes,” he said in an interview with WND and Radio America. “That’s because the jet stream patterns are changing, because the earth is cooling down.

All the arguments about sea-level rise, about Arctic ice disappearing, if you recall it’s not that long ago that our friend Al Gore was saying that there would be no summer ice in the Arctic. I think the year he set for it was 2014. That proved to be completely wrong.


Good News in Global Warming

NASA announced that the Earth is getting greener. Literally greener. Plant growth is way up. Why is plant growth way up? Because of all the extra carbon dioxide in the air.

According to the study, which was published this week in the scientific journal Nature, the total area of the planet that’s covered by plants has increased by more than 11 million square miles in the last 33 years. For perspective: North America, including Greenland, is a little less than nine and a half million square miles. Of course, not all of this increase is due to CO2 and global warming. But 78 percent of it is. (Says the study.)

This is very good news. Plants feed the world. It is not, however, unexpected news. Wall Street Journal readers may recall a piece published in May of 2013 called “In Defense of Carbon Dioxide,” by William Happer, one of Princeton’s top-flight physicists, and Harrison Schmitt, a geologist, a former Republican senator from New Mexico, and an Apollo astronaut who walked on the moon.

“Contrary to what some would have us believe,” wrote Schmitt and Happer, “increased carbon dioxide will benefit the increasing population on the planet by increasing agricultural productivity.”

Needless to say, they were right on the money. And this was no shot in the dark — in fact, the benefit of carbon dioxide to plant life is not only a well-established fact, but suffocatingly obvious, when you think about it: The (very reasonable, entirely correct) trope of conservationists is that we need more plants, because we breathe oxygen and emit carbon dioxide, whereas plants breathe carbon dioxide and emit oxygen. It follows that plants need carbon dioxide in more or less the same way we need oxygen.

 This is why — point out Schmitt and Happer — commercial greenhouses tend to grow plants in air that is 150 percent richer in carbon dioxide than the great outdoors. Schmitt and Happer’s piece also explained that higher levels of atmospheric CO2 make plants more resistant to drought — basically, by reducing the number of water-wasting air holes a plant needs to breathe — which (they say) is why droughts in the age of global warming don’t look like droughts in the age of the Dust Bowl.

And they point out that the current elevated CO2 levels are still much lower than CO2 levels were in the distant (pre-human) past. They add that “variations in global temperature correlate much better with solar activity and complicated cycles of the oceans and atmosphere” than they do with increased levels of carbon dioxide. And that “there isn’t the slightest evidence that more carbon dioxide has caused more extreme weather.”

Unfortunately, Happer and Schmitt’s good tidings were not enough to assuage the concerns of environmental opinion-makers. But the fact that their predictions have been perfectly borne out should give some ammunition to fighters of the good fight.

And in the meantime, everyone on every side of the global-warming argument should take a few moments to appreciate these, our salad days, and — at last — some good news in global warming.


Australia: Eco-Fascists now harassing insurance companies

Climate activists are targeting the role of insurance companies in the expansion of fossil fuel production, highlighting the impact of extreme weather events on their bottom line.

“We’ve already targeted banks and super funds, so insurance companies are the next frontier,” said Dan Gocher from the financial activist group Market Forces.

On Monday it hijacked the insurer QBE’s branding in Sydney, plastering the slogan “Made possible by QBE” over images of coalmines and natural disasters.

At about 8am on Monday morning the Market Forces team hung the posters from the QBE headquarters in Sydney’s CBD. Julien Vincent, executive director of Market Forces said they were removed by security after about 10 minutes.

“It’s about highlighting their role in the perpetuation and expansion of the fossil fuel industry, which is contributing to climate change,” said Gocher, who worked for QBE until 2015. “Because as their slogan tells you, they make it possible.”

The activists’ imagery is very similar to one produced by QBE a few years ago. In 2012 the its annual report printed “Made possible by QBE” on the cover, over an image of an operating coalmine.

In that report, the company boasted it was “a major insurer of the mining sector in Australia” and insured “coalminers in the Queensland Bowen Basin and New South Wales Hunter Valley”.

Finding out exactly how much insurers were underwriting coal and other fossil fuel projects was difficult, Vincent said. “The way you learn about it is when there’s been a disaster,” he said.

When the world’s largest oil leak occurred in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, it was revealed BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil extraction was insured by QBE.

Gocher said the group would target other insurers, but QBE was an obvious place to start because it had revealed some of its involvement in the sector.

Insurers also held large investment portfolios, Gocher said. Australian insurance companies managed about $200bn worth of stock, $35bn of it held by QBE.

Some other insurers have begun to move away from fossil fuels. The French insurer AXA and Germany’s Allianz divested from thermal coal because of climate change.

Overseas insurers and reinsurers (companies that insure other insurance companies) have played a significant role in public discussion of climate change after recognising they were particularly exposed to the effects of extreme weather events.
How to free your investment portfolio from fossil fuels
Read more

In 2015 Munich RE said: “We are convinced that there are particular regions and hazards where climate change is already having a definite influence on losses. Significant effects have to be accounted for in risk management approaches of the insurance industry.”

But despite being hit with large payouts, Australian insurers lagged behind their foreign counterparts, not divesting from fossil fuels and not playing a role in the public discussion, Gocher said.

Annual reports show QBE paid US$76m for storms that battered the New South Wales coast in 2014; US$144m for storms Desmond, Eva and Frank in the UK in 2015; US$108m for cyclone Pam, which hit Vanuatu in March.

Market Forces has asked Australian insurers to divest from fossil fuel in their investment portfolios, begin withdrawing from underwriting fossil fuel companies and play a role in the public conversation about climate change.

Gocher said withdrawal from underwriting could not be done overnight, but companies could immediately cease underwriting new projects.



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2 May, 2016

If the media could interview the earth

Via Bishop Hill

Inside climate propaganda

InsideClimate News excels at propagating environmentalist and Obama thinking and policies

Paul Driessen

Have you ever wondered how the LA Times, Associated Press, Weather Channel and your local media always seem to present similar one-sided stories on climate change, fossil fuels, renewable energy and other environmental issues? How their assertions become “common knowledge,” like the following?

"Global temperatures are the hottest ever recorded. Melting ice caps are raising seas to dangerous levels. Hurricanes, tornadoes, floods and droughts have never been more frequent or destructive. Planet Earth is at a tipping point because of carbon dioxide emissions. Fracking is poisoning our air, water and climate. 97% of scientists agree. A clean renewable energy future is just around the corner."

It’s as if a chain of command, carefully coordinated process or alliance of ideological compatriots was operating behind the scenes to propagate these fables. This time, conspiracy theorists have gotten it right.

A major player in this process and alliance is one that most citizens and even businessmen and politicians have never heard of. InsideClimate News (ICN) has been called “highly influential,” a “pioneer of nonprofit advocacy journalism,” the recipient of “prestigious awards” for “high-impact investigative stories” on important environmental issues.

The Washington Free Beacon, National Review and Energy in Depth offer detailed and far less charitable assessments. Less friendly observers, they note, call ICN a “mouthpiece” for extreme environmentalist groups, because it is run by and out of a deep-green public relations consultancy (Science First) and is funded almost exclusively by wealthy foundations that share its and the PR firm’s anti-fossil fuel, pro-renewable energy, Bigger Government agenda. ICN was founded by David Sasoon, a true believer in catastrophic manmade climate change who wants to do all he can “to usher in the clean energy economy.”

Even praise from its supporters underscores the dark side of this “influential” force in eco-journalism. Its approach is “advocacy,” not fairness, accuracy or balance. Its goal is to drive a monolithic, hard-line, environmentalist narrative and political agenda, with little suggestion that other perspectives even exist.

Some of its awards come from an organization that has itself become politicized and too closely allied with Big Green views and organizations: the Society of Environmental Journalists. They increasingly operate too much as mutual admiration societies and support groups, say outside observers.

ICN and its Science First alter ego received their 2007 startup grant from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, where Sasoon once served as a consultant. They now derive the bulk of their funding from the RBF, NEO Philanthropy (aka, Public Interest Projects), Marlisa Foundation and Park Foundation. These and other sugar daddies are covered in a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee staff report, which describes a “Billionaire’s Club” of “left-wing millionaires and billionaires [which] directs and controls the far-left [US] environmental movement.”

The same foundations also give major tax-exempt donations to the Sierra Club, Earthworks, NRDC, EarthJustice, the climate crisis coalition, and many other anti-coal, anti-drilling, anti-fracking, anti-Keystone pressure groups that together form the $10-billion-a-year US environmentalist industry.

ICN has active partnerships with the LA Times, Associated Press, Weather Channel, Bloomberg News and other media organizations that help coordinate and disperse stories. The Times promotes the “dangerous manmade climate change” meme and refuses to print letters that reflect skeptical views.

The Associated Press has likewise become a reliable purveyor of manmade climate chaos stories. The Weather Channel and ICN teamed up in 2014 on a series of “investigative reports” that claimed hydraulic fracturing was causing serious environmental and human health problems in Texas.

The partners team up and coordinate to “have one group write on an issue, another quote them or link to them, and so on,” Media Research Center VP Dan Gainor explains. “It keeps going until they create this perception that there’s real concern over an issue, and it bubbles up to top liberal sites like Huffington Post, and from there into the traditional media,” which itself is too predisposed to the green narrative.

The foundations “have incorporated ostensibly dispassionate news outlets into their grant-making portfolios,” says the Free Beacon’s Lachlan Markay, “creating what some describe as self-sustaining environmentalist echo chambers.”

They make it look like widespread public concern and spontaneous grassroots action – when in reality it is loud but small Astroturf activism, orchestrated by the ICN brigade and the foundations behind it.

InsideClimate News now brags about its involvement in the extensive collusion among the leftist foundations, environmental pressure groups and state attorneys general that are devising, coordinating and advancing AG prosecutions of ExxonMobil, the Competitive Enterprise Institute and other groups for alleged “racketeering” and “fraud,” to hold them “legally accountable for climate change denial.”

The efforts “stretch back at least to 2012,” ICN notes, when a meeting was held in California to develop legal strategies. In late 2015, letters from several Democrat members of Congress called for investigating and prosecuting climate skeptics; the letters cited independent journalism “investigations by the Los Angeles Times and InsideClimate News” to back up their request.

However, the intrepid Times and ICN investigators had conducted no investigation. They simply parroted and amplified “research” from a group of activist professors and students at the Columbia School of Journalism – without disclosing who had funded the CSJ studies. Transparency for thee, but not for me.

It was George Soros’s Open Society Foundations, along with the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Rockefeller Family Foundation, Energy Foundation, Lorana Sullivan Foundation and Tellus Mater Foundation – all of which virulently oppose hydrocarbon production and actively promote climate change alarmism.

Emails subpoenaed by the Energy & Environment Legal Institute later revealed that many of the same environmentalist groups and lawyers met again in January 2016 at a secret meeting in the Rockefeller Family Fund’s Manhattan offices. Yet another secret meeting was held in March 2016, between climate activists and state attorneys general – hours before the AGs announced that they were launching RICO and other prosecutions of “climate skeptic” companies and think tanks.

The success of this campaign thus far, says ICN, has persuaded the activists to “step up efforts to pressure more attorneys general to investigate [more climate crisis skeptics] and sway public opinion, using op-eds, social media and rope-line questioning of [Republican] presidential candidates at campaign stops.”

This collusion among activists, foundations and attorneys general seeks to silence, bankrupt and defund organizations that challenge their catechism of climate cataclysm. These conspirators want to deprive us of our constitutional rights to speak out on the exaggerated and fabricated science, the coordinated echo- chamber news stories, and the pressure group-driven policies that impair our livelihoods, living standards, health, welfare and environmental quality. We will not be intimidated or silenced.

As CFACT’s new Climate Hustle film notes, manmade plant-fertilizing carbon dioxide has not replaced the powerful natural forces that have always driven Earth’s temperature, climate and weather.

The problem is not climate change. It is policies imposed in the name of preventing climate change.

That’s why Climate Crisis, Inc. wants to silence and jail us. Just imagine how much more they’ll be foaming at the mouth after throngs go to and buy tickets for its May 2 one-night-only showing in hundreds of theaters across the United States.

Via email

State Department Announces Plans to Circumvent US Law in Order to Advance Climate Agenda

State Department spokesman John Kirby announced that the Obama administration plans to circumvent U.S. law in order to advance its climate agenda. This should come as no surprise, as the president has already circumvented the Constitution through not submitting what is clearly an international climate change treaty to the Senate.

U.S. funding for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) should now be prohibited since the Palestinian Authority has signed on as a party to the treaty—and the U.S. does not recognize Palestinian claims of statehood. Under U.S. law, this should trigger a funding prohibition enacted in 1994:

The United States shall not make any voluntary or assessed contribution: (1) to any affiliated organization of the United Nations which grants full membership as a state to any organization or group that does not have the internationally recognized attributes of statehood, or (2) to the United Nations, if the United Nations grants full membership as a state in the United Nations to any organization or group that does not have the internationally recognized attributes of statehood, during any period in which such membership is effective. (Adopted as Public Law 103-236 in 1994.)

Indeed, it is a long-standing U.S. policy that a unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood would undermine internationally accepted frameworks for peace, including the U.N. Security Council Resolution 242 and other U.N. statements, and that recognition should occur only after a negotiated peace agreement with Israel. The Palestinian effort threatens both U.S. and Israeli interests, and the administration is right to oppose it.

This was Kirby’s defense for the administration’s plan to circumvent the law as quoted in The Hill:

"The UNFCCC is a treaty, and the Palestinians’ purported accession does not involve their becoming members of any U.N. specialized agency or, indeed, any international organization. Further, we do not believe that it advances U.S. interests to respond to Palestinian efforts by withholding critical funds that support the implementation of key international agreements, which could undermine our ability to pursue important U.S. objectives. Specifically, cutting off funding for the UNFCCC, would deal a blow to our efforts to promote global action to address climate change"

It has been apparent for some time that the Obama administration views America’s relations with Israel as a low priority, certainly less of a priority than its climate change agenda. This explains the motivation to evade the law, but the legal angle—that the UNFCCC is a treaty not an international organization—is so inconsistent with reality that it is hard to believe that Kirby could state it with a straight face.

The fact of the matter is that the UNFCCC is a treaty-based international organization, just like the United Nations and U.N. specialized agencies and other international organizations like the Organization of American States, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and INTERPOL.

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is the founding legal document upon which the organization and its structure are based. The organization has an executive secretary. The UNFCCC employs “around 500 people” according to its website. The Conference of Parties is the supreme decision-making body, which approves the budget and major decisions. The UNFCC also has permanent subsidiary bodies, as illustrated here.

The organization’s 2014-2015 biennial budget totaled of 54,648,484 euros (not inclusive of the 766,938 euros provided by the host government) of which the U.S. was assessed 21.45 percent.

Contrast this with other treaties that the Palestinians have acceded to, like the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations or the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, which do not have such governance structures.

Other treaties, like the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, have minimal structural elements consisting primarily of their treaty bodies, which in the case of the ICCPR is comprised of 18 independent experts. There is no direct supporting secretariat or other permanent bureaucratic structures. Instead, budgetary and staff support are provided by the U.N. through the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. On principle, the U.S. should also withhold its share of funding from these bodies, but the differences between these treaties and the treaty-based international organizations like the U.N. and the UNFCCC are clear.

In short, if the UNFCCC is not an international organization, then the term has no meaning.

In addition, the affiliation of the UNFCCC with the United Nations is clear. As summarized in an April 18 letter from 28 senators to Secretary of State John Kerry:

"The UNFCCC, through its operating entities, constitutes an ‘affiliated organization of the United Nations.’ For example, the UNFCCC secretariat is connected and linked to the U.N. in many ways, including the following:

The U.N. secretary-general appoints the executive secretary of the UNFCCC secretariat.

At the first Conference of the Parties, the UNFCCC decided that its secretariat ‘shall be institutionally linked to the United Nations.’ According to its website, they remain ‘institutionally linked’ today.

The U.N. serves as Depository for the UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol.

The U.N.’s proposed budget for the biennium 2016-2017 supports the UNFCCC.

The U.N. Campus in Bonn, Germany houses the UNFCCC secretariat, which the U.N. lists as one of 18 organizations that represents it and that are part of the ‘U.N. presence’ in Bonn.

The UNFCCC secretariat is subject to U.N. rules and regulations regarding procurement and other matters.

The UNFCCC secretariat supports what it describes as the “largest annual United Nations conference”

Based on these facts, it is clear that U.S. funding to the UNFCCC should be prohibited under current law. Nonetheless, Kirby’s comments indicate that the Obama administration is determined to provide funding. Congress should respond by providing no funding for and barring transfer of any funds to the UNFCCC and its related entities in the future.


Navajo Nation President Slams EPA on Response to Gold King Mine Spill Response

At a congressional field hearing in Phoenix, Ariz., on Friday, Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye said the EPA has not fulfilled its promise to pay for damages done to Native American lands from the toxic spill of mine waste into waterways in Colorado, which eventually polluted water in that state, New Mexico, and Utah, and Navajo Nation land in New Mexico, Utah and Arizona.

“EPA has not lived up to its word,” Begaye said in a video posted on the Arizona Republic website. “ It’s been empty promise after empty promise.”

“We’ve had numerous meetings where promises were made and none of it EPA has lived up to,” Begaye said.

The Navajo-Hopi Observer reported on Tuesday that the Navajo Nation has requested more than $2 million in reimbursements. The EPA has offered $157,000, which totals less than 8 percent of expenses incurred, according to Begaye’s office.

The amount was offered as a grant and not recognized as reimbursement, the news outlet reported.

In Begaye's written statement from the hearing, he listed eight requests: a fair and independent assessment of the role the EPA played in events leading up to the Gold King Mine Spill; resources to conduct the Nation's own monitoring, testing and assessment of water, soil and crops; funds dedicated to emergency preparedness for future environmental disasters; the EPA's full support of listing the Upper Animas Mining District on the National Priorities List; and resources to stabilize farming along the San Juan River.

During the hearing, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs (SCOIA) would continue holding hearings until all questions are answered and compensation was awarded to the Nation.

"An economic analyst told the SCOIA that the Navajo Nation lost $982,000 in agriculture production during the first two weeks of the spill," McCain said, adding that costs from the disaster could reach upward of $335 million.

The Navajo-Hopi Observer also reported that McCain said because of the EPA's lack of action and forthright involvement, a criminal investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice is merited and should occur.


Having an obnoxious Greenie elitist in charge of London? I don’t think so

Having Zac Goldsmith run London would be like asking a nun to run a brothel

If you hate cars and supermarkets and junk food and people cramming together to sell stuff and buy stuff and dispose of stuff, then London probably isn’t for you. Take it from me, a Londoner from birth, who never ceases to be amazed by the daily cranking to life of this beast of steel and concrete and human throngs, the greatest city on Earth, which is as unnatural a spectacle as you’re ever likely to see. Even Hyde Park, the great green space we escape to, is manmade, having been shaped at great cost by landscapers, its Serpentine lake invented through the damming of a river that once ran through this space in order to create a waterscape that would be a ‘line of beauty’. Anyone who thinks ‘manmade’ is a term of abuse need only look at London: a sprawling human invention, housing nearly nine million souls, all enjoying the liberation from nature provided by manmade city life.

All of which raises a question: why on earth does Zac Goldsmith want to run this city? Goldsmith, an eco-Tory from leafy Richmond, wants to be mayor of London. Which is bizarre given that his deep-green soul, his profoundly conservative and ecological heart, makes him bristle with horror at everything big and modern and, well, manmade. Having Goldsmith run London would be like having a nun run a brothel: this eco-puritan is just not cut out for the job of overseeing a city of millions, of trade, of power, of light, of litter, of vice, all things that tend to freak out deep greens.

All the views held by Goldsmith make it weird that he wants to run a city, never mind one as colossal as London, one that puts old Rome to shame with its energy and noise. Virtually his every utterance speaks to a snooty disdain for modernity. On supermarkets, ‘I really hate them’, he says. They’re ‘soul-destroying’, he reckons. That’s if the ignoramuses who shop in supermarkets — you know, Ordinary People — even have souls capable of being destroyed. ‘You might as well be a product on a conveyor belt hurtling around the shop doing what you have been programmed to do by the corporation selling you crap’, says Goldsmith with superb snobbery of the dumb, robotic hordes who patronise supermarkets. London throbs with supermarkets, whether the little Londis ones on your local high street or the sprawling Morrison’s in your nearest town centre, and these supermarkets throb with people, who haven’t been ‘programmed’ to try to do their weekly shop in a nifty 45-minute trolley-dash under one roof — they want to, in order that they might have more free time for family life, social life, London life. That a prospective mayor doesn’t get this is weird, and worrying.

And Mayor Zac — heaven forbid — should make sure he never ventures into the West End or Soho on a Saturday night, where he might see people throwing back beer and burgers or plates of madly delicious Italian fare. For just as he has a problem with the junk-minded people who shuffle zombie-like through Tescos, he also has a problem with junk food. ‘I’m convinced our diet is making us ill’, he has said. He reckons rubbish food is causing cancer and autism and also hyperactivity in kids, which is just a pseudo-scientific, eco-ridiculous update of the idea of the ‘wages of sin’: the wages of your sinful Nando’s will be mental disease, or death. ‘We don’t know what is in our food any more’, wails Goldsmith. Yes, we do: dirty sauce (if you’re into Shoreditch hipster food), loads of lamb (if the Turks of Seven Sisters are your preferred chefs), lashings of creamy carbonara (if it’s a Soho Italian you’re after). Goldsmith would be better suited to running one of those sad health farms for middle-class self-haters than a city of a trillion calories like London.

He isn’t fond of the idea of people moving around, either. His Cameron-commissioned ‘Quality of Life’ report in the 2000s proposed slapping stiff taxes on short-haul flights and highly polluting vehicles in order to discourage people — and especially plebs, let’s face it, who aren’t flush with money — from journeying around so much. His idea of ‘quality of life’ is clearly different to that of the average inhabitant of London, in which there are 2.6million licensed cars and where millions of people land in planes every year. Movement, migration, travel: these are the lifeblood of London.

But then, Goldsmith has made clear throughout his career as a famed eco-miserabilist and then mumbling MP that he is against progress in general — even in the Third World, never mind London. People say that ‘poor countries must be given the right to catch up [with the West]’, he once said, ‘but they can’t’. Apparently Earth ‘cannot sustain the process of Third World countries catching up with us. It’s crazy, it’s mad. It’s just not possible.’ So they’ll have to stay put, these Third Worlders, living what the likes of Goldsmith consider to be ‘natural lives’ but which is really just grinding poverty. A politician with such a shrivelled sense of what’s possible — ‘it’s just not possible’, he says of massive growth in the South — won’t get on well with a city of possibility like London.

More recently, perhaps recognising that the mayor of a city has to have some kind of plan for where citizens will live, Goldsmith has said he would fuel a ‘house-building revolution’ in London. If you think that sounds unlikely coming from someone who’s against progress and industry and airports and more, then you’re right. Goldsmith says he’ll build 50,000 new homes in a year, which is not nearly enough to satisfy demand. And he’ll mostly build them on publicly owned brownfield land or through doing up ‘dilapidated estates’, all in the name of avoiding building on the Green Belt. But that is what we need: Green Belt build, the expansion of London further outwards, as has happened throughout history, so that the city becomes bigger and the current trend towards densification and cramming people into small flats and homes can be reversed. Not surprisingly, for someone who thinks ‘the world [is] under siege’ from corporations and pollution and other bad things, Goldsmith thinks interfering with the Green Belt is sacrilege. Once again, preserving greenery takes precedence over meeting mankind’s needs — the polar opposite to what a city’s priorities ought to be.

The Goldsmith worldview is best summed up in The Ecologist, the nutty magazine founded by his uncle Edward Goldsmith and edited by Zac in the 2000s. To read that mag — or peruse it, rather; reading it is far too depressing — is to peer into the fearful, panicked, misanthropic soul of eco-aristocrats and middle-class miserabilists. It drips with disdain for modern man and his harmful chemicals and overpopulation and psychologically disordered climate-change denial. To have the former head of such a mag agitating to govern London is as strange as it would be for one of those sneery anti-football-fan Guardian types to go for a job at the top of the FA. You hate this stuff, why do you want to be in charge of it?

Of course, Goldsmith is not alone in obsessing over how to make London more eco-friendly. His Labour rival Sadiq Khan also spouts green platitudes and has flip-flopped on building on the Green Belt (he was once in favour, now he’s against). And even Boris Johnson, supposedly brave questioner of climate-change orthodoxy, transmogrified into a green mayor when he got the job eight years ago, rushing out doom-laden reports about future floods and whatnot if we don’t tame London’s industrial and consumerist appetites. What these people seem not to understand is that a city, in its very bones, is eco-unfriendly; it represents a defiance of nature, a pushing against nature, a coming together of vast numbers of human beings to do things better than nature: to live in a manmade zone in which we’re safe from nature’s whims, food is always in supply, and working and getting about are no longer a great struggle. To be a citizen, to inhabit a city, is to be liberated from the natural world. It is to be eco-unfriendly. And people want this, everywhere. More than half of the world’s population — 54% — now live in urban areas. Because they’re better than natural areas.

Sure, a mayor should keep parks up to scratch, give us recreational things to do, and ensure easy access for Londoners to nearby beautiful landscapes (by running a better train service, among other manmade things). But he must also realise that making London ‘green’, in the sense of lowering its ambitions, restricting its ability to expand, and tut-tutting at its populace for being greedy and fat and not sufficiently into cycling, isn’t going to happen. London isn’t green, and it never will be: it’s something far better than that — grey and silver and blue and all the other colours of the structures and networks and roads we have built for millions and millions of Londoners, and even higher numbers of aspiring Londoners.


For a London a hundred miles wide

Let’s build on the Green Belt and let the city breathe

Imagine a city that stretched from Oxford in the west to Canterbury in the east. Imagine if its southern tip was Brighton and it stretched up to Bedford and Cambridge in the north. This is not a vision of the future, it is already here, if only we would let it breathe.

The London mayoral candidates have woken up to the need to build more flats and houses. For decades, London has been strangled by the Green Belt of protected land that starts in Romford in the east, Enfield in the north, Hounslow in the west, and Sutton in the south. Because of that stranglehold over new growth, too few homes are built. And, as a result, the existing stock costs too much.

If we got rid of the Green Belt, and built outwards, it would be easy to build more than enough new homes for people in London. By making London bigger, prices would fall back to a more realistic £200,000 per home (the UK average). Or less, if there were a corresponding housebuilding programme countrywide.

So far, the mayoral candidates have promised, at most, an additional 50,000 homes (apart from the rogue Polish aristocrat candidate Prince John Zylinski, who says he will build a million if he is elected). Fifty-thousand is a start, but it is not enough. More to the point, there is nowhere to put those new homes, unless you build outwards, on to the Green Belt.

Better still, if we build out, we can reduce the densification of London. Too many people are being crammed into too small a space. The city has to be able to breathe. Instead of squeezing more and more flats into every space that becomes available – or just seized – London needs more green space in its centre, and wider streets.

Already we can see the advantage of more space. The creation of the new financial district in Canary Wharf has meant the old City of London is turning back into a residential district.

Just imagine if we knocked down more of the overcrowded dwellings in the centre to make way for a properly functioning transport system, which connected the inner hub to the outer reaches. That feeling you get when you escape the North Circular, and get on to the Westway, where you can actually drive, ought to have been expanded with a Northway, an Eastway and a Southway, but those developments were blocked by the NIMBY brigade.

In truth, London is a vast, south-east conurbation. Eight-and-a-half-million people live in the official Greater London area, but another five million live in the commuter belt around it. If the Green Belt was built on, and the city was allowed to grow into those suburbs, all of us could live grander, freer lives, with green parks around us, and trains and motorways to carry us into town and out again.

Instead of freeing up more flats by hounding hapless social-housing tenants out of their estates, or cramming yet another flat on top of a takeaway in Hackney, or squeezing in yet one more attic bedroom into a bad extension, we should create a grand new vista of garden suburbs on the city’s exurbs.

Our mayoral candidates are too preoccupied with technical issues. Should there be more council houses, or some special kind of mortgage deal to give anxious first-time buyers a tenuous foothold on the housing ladder? All of these proposals miss the point. They are fixed on single cases, not the bigger picture.

To break the deadlock we need to build many, many more houses. So many, in fact, that there would be too many, so that people can buy them cheap. If London is roughly a circle, each 100 metres it grows outwards increases the overall area by 100 square metres x ?, or 3.14, so 314m2. Just a modest increase in the city’s area, of 1,000km2, just an eighth of the metropolitan area, would house another five million people at the level of existing densities. We could always expand further, say 2,000km2, and house these people at much lower densities.

I wish I could say that this proposal was a revolutionary vision for tomorrow. But it is not. It was first set out more than a century ago. In 1909, Ford Madox Ford dreamed of a city not of seven million, but 70million. Ford hated the word ‘suburb’, which he thought was demeaning. Instead he thought that the suburbs were the vanguard, and that they should be called ‘fore towns’. He wrote that ‘the fore town of my Great London would be on the one hand, say, Oxford, and on the other, say, Dover’. Ford continued:

‘It takes in, this circle, Winchester, the delightful country around Petersfield, Chichester, all the coast to Brighton, Hastings, Dover, all Essex, and round again by way of Cambridge and Oxford.’

Distance would be no barrier, he said, since ‘Oxford is 60 miles from London, and in my non-stop monorail express, this should be a matter of half-an-hour’. This is an ambition that we have not kept pace with, seeing as it still takes an hour to get to Oxford by train.

‘Yet there is nothing Utopian about the idea’, wrote Ford, ‘it is coming about every day. The residential portion of the population is more and more abandoning the clayey bottoms of the Thames Valley.’ Anticipating the actual trajectory of the south-east, Ford continued: ‘It is on the road, this change, it has to come. All south-eastern England is just London.’



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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1 May, 2016

Bill Nye, UN Climate Scientist Warn Moviegoers to Shun Film’s 1-Day Theater Release: ‘Not in Our National Interest’

Reviews: ‘Climate Hustle’ is ‘the most dangerous documentary of year’ – ‘Wickedly effective use of slapstick humor’ – ‘Lays waste to Gore’ – ‘Brutal & Extremely Funny’

Leading climate activists are warning moviegoers to shun the May 2nd nationwide one-day theater screening of “Climate Hustle,” a new film debunking climate alarmism and its big government solutions.

Bill Nye (not a real “science guy,” FYI), who entertains the idea of throwing climate skeptics in the slammer, warned the film’s producer, Climate Depot publisher Marc Morano, that “Climate Hustle’s” content endangers not just the nation, but also the world:

“I think it will expose your point of view as very much in the minority and very much not in our national interest and the world’s interest."

U.N. Climate Scientist Michael Oppenheimer has, likewise, condemned the film – without even viewing it - for daring to dispute climate alarmism. "Marc is a propagandist,” the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change scientist cautions viewers.

“Climate Hustle: Are They Trying to Control the Climate…or You?” employs data, humor, and everyday language – and climate alarmists’ own past predictions – to document the holes in manmade climate doom theory and demonstrate how alarmism is being used as a pretext to increase government power and limit individual freedoms.

“Climate Hustle” will be in theaters for a one-night event on Monday, May 2nd, and will include an exclusive panel discussion following the film featuring Gov. Sarah Palin, climatologist Dr. David Legates, Media Research Center Pres. Brent Bozell, and film host Marc Morano.


Flint Residents Pin Blame of Lead-Laden Water on EPA

Despite the Environmental Protection Agency’s insistence to the contrary, more than 500 current and former residents of Flint, Michigan, joined in a class action lawsuit placing blame on the agency for its hand in the lead-tainted water in the city. The suit, filed Monday, seeks $220 million in potential damages from the agency for personal injury and property damage over the EPA’s inaction in Flint. “The EPA heard the alarm bell loud and clear but chose to ignore the profound environmental and public health issues brought to its attention in the early stages of this disaster,” said Michael Pitt, attorney for the plaintiffs. “This agency attitude of ‘public be damned’ amounts to a cruel and unspeakable act of environmental injustice for which damages will have to be paid to the thousands of injured water users.”

In March, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy complained that it was state officials who were giving the EPA the runaround, the ones who were hiding the condition of Flint’s water from the protectors of the environment. It was much more content to place blame on Michigan’s Republican governor. And while mistakes were made, at least one party holds blame for putting bureaucratic incompetence ahead of actually protecting people and the environment. The EPA regulates lead and copper piping. It oversees states' drinking water programs. The agency won’t get off the hook easily.


Get off my fracking land! Furious British farmer sprays MANURE at  Greenies

An irate farmer sprayed raw sewage at Oscar winning star Emma Thompson and her sister Sophie after they flouted a court injunction protecting a fracking site.

The stars were filming a Great British Bake Off parody for Greenpeace when the owner of the field they trespassed on drove his muck spreader in circles around the demonstrators.

A group of protesters were hit by the manure but the actresses remained dry in their tent, complete with Bake Off-inspired bunting.

Police were also called and also spoke to the actresses, who climbed over a gate and set up camp on land earmarked for gas exploration in Fylde, Lancashire.

Emma and Sophie, who won Celebrity Masterchef, filmed a pastiche episode of the Great British Bake Off called Frack Free Bake Off to voice their opposition to the fracking plans.

But this afternoon the landowner, who leases the contested patch of land to fracking company Cuadrilla, drove his muck spreader in circles around the demonstrating group.

After a couple of circles around the group, who were shouting for him to stop it, the farmer drove off.

Protesters are banned from the site, near Preston, after company Cuadrilla applied for an injunction in 2014. It is not clear if the fracking company will now take civil action - but it appears unlikely.

The sisters, who are also Greenpeace supporters, baked a wind turbine cake and a solar lemon cake in a white marquee complete with vintage utensils and bunting.

Soon afterwards at least five police officers arrived - Lancashire Police said they were there for safety reasons and made no arrests.

Explaining the stunt Emma Thompson said: 'My sister has won Celebrity Masterchef and is viciously competitive. She might have planned to do away with me while we are doing this.

'I have a feeling she's been up all night practising and I haven't been because I'm lazy.'

She added she does not fancy her chances in the competition, saying: 'I'm not a good baker, I don't have a great deal of skill so I'm fairly sure it won't go in my favour but we are all winning because we are protesting these fracking plans.'

She continued: 'I've been aware of this issue for a while with my work with Greenpeace and it came to a head for me when David Cameron went to the Paris Climate Conference and signed on to the protocol and then on the sly at Christmas, when nobody was looking, gave the nod to 200 fracking sites in Britain.

'It proved to me our Government is saying one thing and doing the opposite.'

The sisters' efforts will be judged by cake shop owner Kate Styles, from near Blackpool.

The local community will be able to taste the cakes at a tea party after filming and people can cast their votes on Twitter to persuade the judge to pick their favourite.

Ms Styles said: 'We are angry that we won't get the final say over whether there is fracking in our community or not.

'Local residents and their councillors have played by the rules of our planning and democratic process in rejecting Cuadrilla's drilling plan.

'The Government didn't like the outcome and appointed itself as the ultimate judge.

'It doesn't seem right that the only decision we will get to make is which is the best cake made on the site where Cuadrilla want to frack.

'But we are thrilled that Emma and Sophie Thompson have come here to support us.'

Cuadrilla's application to drill on the site was rejected by Lancashire County Council last year amid strong public opposition and was appealed by the company.

Communities and Local Government Secretary Greg Clark has announced he will have the final say on the application, with his decision expected in coming months.

Sophie Thompson said: 'There's nothing like food to bring people together, and nothing like fracking to pull them apart.

'For years, to oppose fracking, this community has played by the rules of our democracy.

'Yet the Government has rigged the competition undemocratically to favour the fracking industry.

'If our Government energy policy were a cake, it would probably be a crossover between a crumble and an Eton mess.'

The government backs fracking and developing shale oil and gas in the UK, claiming it has the potential to: 'provide the UK with greater energy security, growth and jobs.'

In 2014, Prime Minister David Cameron described fracking - short for hydraulic fracturing' - as 'good for our country'.

In January, a leaked Governmental 10-page plan set out a timeline for the expansion of the shale gas industry in Britain.

It could see wells classified as 'nationally significant infrastructures' - meaning drilling permission is taken away from councils.

Friends of the Earth, which obtained the leaked letter, branded the proposed changes 'an attack on democracy'.

Greenpeace's Hannah Martin said: 'We don't need fracked gas to keep Britain baking.

'We need renewable energy, like wind and solar. We are fighting for this land to remain frack free.'

A police spokesman added: 'We were this morning made aware of a protest on land at Plumpton Hall Farm at Little Plumpton.

'A local neighbourhood patrol attended and spoke to a representative of the protestors to establish their intentions.

'It was not felt necessary or proportionate to maintain a police presence at the site but resources are available to attend again if necessary.'

But Ken Cronin, chief executive of UK Onshore Oil and Gas, said it was ‘ironic that Sophie Thompson, who uses gas stoves in videos to promote her own cook books, and her sister, who described Britain as “a cake-filled misery-laden grey old island”, should want to attempt to hijack the UK’s love of baking for an ill-conceived publicity stunt’.


Here’s How Fracking Bailed Out California’s Global Warming Goals

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for natural gas is responsible for California’s ability to keep electricity prices relatively low while meeting its global warming goals, according to statistical analysis published in Forbes Monday.

The analysis concludes that fracking “cushioned the blow of shifting to higher cost and more intermittent sources of renewable energy” and saved the state from an enormous increase in power prices. Forbes estimates that fracking caused electricity prices in California to fall by 70 percent since 2005. Without the fracking boom, Forbes estimates that the price of electricity would have increased by 26 percent in California since 2005.

Fracking has allowed California to keep prices relatively low while meeting global warming goals, but the state still has some of the most expensive electricity in the country. The state pays an annual averaged 14.3 cents per kilowatt house, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). The national average is 10.1 cents.

Despite the bailout from fracking and massive amounts of taxpayer cash poured into wind and solar power, California has been much slower to reduce its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions than other large states. Texas and Georgia, for example, turned to natural gas much quicker than the Golden State, and saw much larger declines in their CO2 emissions as a result.

Fracking helps California meet its commitments under the 2006 California Global Warming Solutions Act, which committed the state to sharp cuts in CO2 emissions. The same year, the state adopted another law that began effectively phasing out coal-fired power plants. These bills were supposed to reduce CO2 by the state’s utilities and supporters even claimed switching over to wind and solar power wouldn’t cost consumers a dime.

At the time, California was deeply dependent on natural gas and the government had predicted that the state would be forced to import enormous quantities of foreign natural gas just to keep the lights on.

Studies show that fracking for natural gas is responsible for almost 20 percent of falling CO2 emissions nationally, while the solar power California encouraged is responsible for a mere 1 percent of the decline. For every ton of CO2 cut by solar power, fracking cut 13 tons.

Natural gas-fired power plants emit far less CO2 than conventional coal power. The switch from coal to natural gas caused carbon dioxide emissions to drop sharply in 47 states and Washington, D.C. according to both Scientific American and the EIA.

Most of the progressive politicians who originally attempted to decrease the state’s CO2 emissions remain vehemently opposed to fracking. Forbes points out that the politicians have already requested another $104 billion to build solar arrays, wind turbines, energy storage and new power lines to support green energy, which translates to a bill of roughly $11,000 for the average California family.


Critics Say Obama’s Clean Power Plan Would Increase ‘Energy Poverty’ in US

Critics warn that implementing the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Power Plan (CPP) to fulfill President Obama's pledge to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change would force many more American households into “energy poverty”.

Signatory nations to the non-binding international pact, which Secretary of State John Kerry signed at the United Nations’ headquarters in New York on Friday, have agreed to drastic reductions in their use of cheap, abundant fossil fuels to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The CPP is the centerpiece of President Obama’s pledge to reduce CO2 emissions in the U.S. between 26 and 28 percent by 2025. In February, the U.S. Supreme Court voted 5-4 to delay implementation of the CPP while it is being challenged in court by 27 states.

But opponents warn that if CPP goes into effect, it will plunge many more Americans into “energy poverty” – defined as households that are forced to spend 10 percent or more of their annual income on energy, excluding transportation.

“It’s coming. We’re seeing rising electricity prices all across the U.S.,” Dan Kish, senior vice president for policy at the American Energy Alliance, told “This is consistent with President Obama’s promise in 2008 that under his plan, electricity rates ‘would necessarily skyrocket’.”

“The interesting thing is that electric rates are going up quite substantially across the board even though the price of our largest source of electricity – which in the U.S. is now natural gas – is at an historic low and demand is static,” he said.

Kish pointed out that the EPA’s “war on CO2” has already forced the closure of hundreds of power plants fueled by natural gas, coal and nuclear energy.

"Even though the cost of fuel, such as natural gas, is low right now, ratepayers will have to pay for years” to cover the billions of dollars in construction costs for the new replacement plants, he told CNSNews.

“The Obama administration has changed the entire electricity industry from one run by private markets to one run by government,” Kish said.

“Unfortunately, this means higher electric bills and forcing many more people into energy poverty.”

The CPP “would definitely raise the cost of energy,” Marita Noon, executive director of a non-profit group, Energy Makes America Great, told, pointing to California as an example of what will happen nationwide if the CPP goes into effect.

“California has eliminated the least costly source of electricity, coal, and dramatically increased wind and solar, which are more expensive,” she explained.

Noon added that California’s higher electricity rates have a disproportionate impact on low-income residents, who are sometimes faced with the difficult decision to “heat or eat”.

According to a July 2015 Manhattan Institute study entitled Less Carbon, Higher Prices, nearly one million California households (7.4 percent) are already living in “energy poverty” due to a state requirement that a third of all electricity generated in the state come from renewable sources by 2020 – “the most stringent among states without significant in-state (or close proximity to) hydroelectric generating capacity”.

The study noted that due to the higher cost of generating electricity using wind and solar instead of fossil fuels, the average undiscounted residential electric rate in California (18 to 21 cents/kilowatt hour) in 2014 was nearly twice the U.S. average (12 cents/kWh).

“When retail consumers subsidize electricity supplies at above-market costs, retail prices inevitably rise, even if the fuel is ‘free’,” the study explained.

“As the Golden State continues its pursuit of a low-carbon economy, its green-energy policies are driving rising numbers of Californians into energy poverty.”


Australia: Bureau of Meteorology boss Rob Vertessy exits with climate warning

The report below is carefully worded but it still gives the absurd impression that global warming will increase drought.  It won't.  It would increase floods as warmer seas evaporate off more water.  The drought in the Southern states is part of an iregular oscillation that sees rain move North and South in turns.  It is the North that is getting the rain at the moment.  Where I live in the North it is raining nearly every day lately, when the normal pattern is for rain mainly in January,  February and March.  See here

UPDATE:  As I write this, it is raining like Billy-o outside. And we are now in May. Most unseasonable.  We have definitely got the rain that the Southerners are missing.  Don't ask me how or why that happens but it is a normal feature of the Australian climate

Australia faces a "perilous" water security future from climate change even as the Turnbull government eyes budget cuts to water programs and CSIRO halves climate investment, Rob Vertessy, the outgoing head of the Bureau of Meteorology, says.

Reservoirs in the Murray-Darling basin are now close to their lowest levels since the Millennium Drought and Tasmania is also facing "serious" issues", Dr Vertessy told Fairfax Media on Friday, his final day as the bureau's chief.

"Water shortage is a problem and climate change is going to be intensifying the drought and flood cycle," he said, noting that water demand is increasing. "Australia faces a really perilous water security challenge in the future."

The bureau now had "the world's best water information service", including precise stream-flow forecasting, that boasts a return on investments of between twofold and ninefold, despite the early stage of many projects, Dr Vertessy, a hydrologist by training, said. A drop in funding would result in a sharp reduction of services.

Facing criticism at home and abroad, CSIRO last week announced that it would instead form a special climate science centre of 40 staff under its Oceans and Atmosphere division. About 45 of the remaining 100 scientists in two key programs will lose their jobs and the future of those remaining is uncertain.

The need to boost global warming research was only going to increase. In Australia's case, the threats included lengthening and intensifying fire seasons, worse heatwaves and more intense storms.

"Unless we start slowing down our [greenhouse gas] emissions and really mitigating them completely in the next few decades, there's going to be a lot of environmental shocks to the planet," Dr Vertessy said. Human societies and ecosystems "are being pushed to the edge of sustainability".

The advance of technology promises ever more accurate weather prediction. The bureau will soon begin using a new supercomputer that promises 18 times faster data processing, and within three years, a 30-fold increase.

The resulting higher resolution capability would allow the bureau to scale forecasts down to 1.5 kilometres from 4 kilometres now, allowing an improvement in severe weather warnings.



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


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Context for the minute average temperature change recorded: At any given time surface air temperatures around the world range over about 100°C. Even in the same place they can vary by nearly that much seasonally and as much as 30°C or more in a day. A minute rise in average temperature in that context is trivial if it is not meaningless altogether. Scientists are Warmists for the money it brings in, not because of the facts

This site is in favour of things that ARE good for the environment. That the usual Greenie causes are good for the environment is however disputed. Greenie policies can in fact be actively bad for the environment -- as with biofuels, for instance

This Blog by John Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.), writing from Brisbane, Australia.

I am the most complete atheist you can imagine. I don't believe in Karl Marx, Jesus Christ or global warming. And I also don't believe in the unhealthiness of salt, sugar and fat. How skeptical can you get? If sugar is bad we are all dead

And when it comes to "climate change", I know where the skeletons are buried

Antarctica is GAINING mass

Warmists depend heavily on ice cores for their figures about the atmosphere of the past. But measuring the deep past through ice cores is a very shaky enterprise, which almost certainly takes insufficient account of compression effects. The apparently stable CO2 level of 280ppm during the Holocene could in fact be entirely an artifact of compression at the deeper levels of the ice cores. . Perhaps the gas content of an ice layer approaches a low asymptote under pressure. Dr Zbigniew Jaworowski's criticisms of the assumed reliability of ice core measurements are of course well known. And he studied them for over 30 years.

The world's first "Green" party was the Nazi party -- and Greenies are just as Fascist today in their endeavours to dictate to us all and in their attempts to suppress dissent from their claims.

Was Pope Urban VIII the first Warmist? Below we see him refusing to look through Galileo's telescope. People tend to refuse to consider evidence— if what they might discover contradicts what they believe.

Warmism is a powerful religion that aims to control most of our lives. It is nearly as powerful as the Catholic Church once was

Believing in global warming has become a sign of virtue. Strange in a skeptical era. There is clearly a need for faith

Some advice from the Buddha that the Green/Left would do well to think about: "Three things cannot be long hidden: The Sun, The Moon and The Truth"

Leftists have faith that warming will come back some day. And they mock Christians for believing in the second coming of Christ! They obviously need religion

Global warming has in fact been a religious doctrine for over a century. Even Charles Taze Russell, the founder of Jehovah's Witnesses, believed in it

A rosary for the church of global warming (Formerly the Catholic church): "Hail warming, full of grace, blessed art thou among climates and blessed is the fruit of thy womb panic"

Pope Francis is to the Catholic church what Obama is to America -- a mistake, a fool and a wrecker

Global warming is the predominant Leftist lie of the 21st century. No other lie is so influential. The runner up lie is: "Islam is a religion of peace". Both are rankly absurd.

"When it comes to alarmism, we’re all deniers; when it comes to climate change, none of us are" -- Dick Lindzen

The EPA does everything it can get away with to shaft America and Americans

Cromwell's famous plea: "I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken" was ignored by those to whom it was addressed -- to their great woe. Warmists too will not consider that they may be wrong ..... "Bowels" was a metaphor for compassion in those days

The plight of the bumblebee -- an egregious example of crooked "science"

Inorganic Origin of Petroleum: "The theory of Inorganic Origin of Petroleum (synonyms: abiogenic, abiotic, abyssal, endogenous, juvenile, mineral, primordial) states that petroleum and natural gas was formed by non-biological processes deep in the Earth, crust and mantle. This contradicts the traditional view that the oil would be a "fossil fuel" produced by remnants of ancient organisms. Oil is a hydrocarbon mixture in which a major constituent is methane CH4 (a molecule composed of one carbon atom bonded to four hydrogen atoms). Occurrence of methane is common in Earth's interior and in space. The inorganic theory contrasts with the ideas that posit exhaustion of oil (Peak Oil), which assumes that the oil would be formed from biological processes and thus would occur only in small quantities and sets, tending to exhaust. Some oil drilling now goes 7 miles down, miles below any fossil layers

As the Italian chemist Primo Levi reflected in Auschwitz, carbon is ‘the only element that can bind itself in long stable chains without a great expense of energy, and for life on Earth (the only one we know so far) precisely long chains are required. Therefore carbon is the key element of living substance.’ The chemistry of carbon (2) gives it a unique versatility, not just in the artificial world, but also, and above all, in the animal, vegetable and – speak it loud! – human kingdoms.

David Archibald: "The more carbon dioxide we can put into the atmosphere, the better life on Earth will be for human beings and all other living things."


"It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong." --- Richard P. Feynman. Consensus is invoked only in situations where the science is not solid enough - Michael Crichton

"The growth of knowledge depends entirely on disagreement" -- Karl Popper

"Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts" – Richard Feynman

"The desire to save humanity is always a false front for the urge to rule it" -- H L Mencken

'Nothing is more terrible than ignorance in action' -- Goethe

“Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.” -- Voltaire

Lord Salisbury: "No lesson seems to be so deeply inculcated by experience of life as that you should never trust experts. If you believe doctors, nothing is wholesome; if you believe theologians, nothing is innocent; if you believe soldiers, nothing is safe."

Calvin Coolidge said, "If you see 10 troubles coming down the road, you can be sure that nine will run into the ditch before they reach you." He could have been talking about Warmists.

Some advice from long ago for Warmists: "If ifs and ans were pots and pans,there'd be no room for tinkers". It's a nursery rhyme harking back to Middle English times when "an" could mean "if". Tinkers were semi-skilled itinerant workers who fixed holes and handles in pots and pans -- which were valuable household items for most of our history. Warmists are very big on "ifs", mays", "might" etc. But all sorts of things "may" happen, including global cooling

Bertrand Russell knew about consensus: "The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widespread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible.”

There goes another beautiful theory about to be murdered by a brutal gang of facts. - Duc de La Rochefoucauld, French writer and moralist (1613-1680)

"Pluralitas non est ponenda sine necessitate" -- William of Occam

Was Paracelsus a 16th century libertarian? His motto was: "Alterius non sit qui suus esse potest" which means "Let no man belong to another who can belong to himself." He was certainly a rebel in his rejection of authority and his reliance on observable facts and is as such one of the founders of modern medicine

"In science, refuting an accepted belief is celebrated as an advance in knowledge; in religion it is condemned as heresy". (Bob Parks, Physics, U of Maryland). No prizes for guessing how global warming skepticism is normally responded to.

"Almost all professors of the arts and sciences are egregiously conceited, and derive their happiness from their conceit" -- Erasmus

"The improver of natural knowledge absolutely refuses to acknowledge authority, as such. For him, scepticism is the highest of duties; blind faith the one unpardonable sin." -- Thomas H. Huxley

Time was, people warning the world "Repent - the end is nigh!" were snickered at as fruitcakes. Now they own the media and run the schools.

"One of the sources of the Fascist movement is the desire to avoid a too-rational and too-comfortable world" -- George Orwell, 1943 in Can Socialists Be Happy?

The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts -- Bertrand Russell

“Affordable energy in ample quantities is the lifeblood of the industrial societies and a prerequisite for the economic development of the others.” -- John P. Holdren, Science Adviser to President Obama. Published in Science 9 February 2001

The closer science looks at the real world processes involved in climate regulation the more absurd the IPCC's computer driven fairy tale appears. Instead of blithely modeling climate based on hunches and suppositions, climate scientists would be better off abandoning their ivory towers and actually measuring what happens in the real world.' -- Doug L Hoffman

Something no Warmist could take on board: "Knuth once warned a correspondent, "Beware of bugs in the above code; I have only proved it correct, not tried it." -- Prof. Donald Knuth, whom some regard as the world's smartest man

"To be green is to be irrational, misanthropic and morally defective. They are the barbarians at the gate we have to stand against" -- Rich Kozlovich

“We’ve got to ride this global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic and environmental policy.“ – Timothy Wirth, President of the UN Foundation

“Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse? Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about?” – Maurice Strong, founder of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP)

Leftists generally and Warmists in particular very commonly ascribe disagreement with their ideas to their opponent being "in the pay" of someone else, usually "Big Oil", without troubling themselves to provide any proof of that assertion. They are so certain that they are right that that seems to be the only reasonable explanation for opposition to them. They thus reveal themselves as the ultimate bigots -- people with fixed and rigid ideas.


This is one of TWO skeptical blogs that I update daily. During my research career as a social scientist, I was appalled at how much writing in my field was scientifically lacking -- and I often said so in detail in the many academic journal articles I had published in that field. I eventually gave up social science research, however, because no data ever seemed to change the views of its practitioners. I hoped that such obtuseness was confined to the social scientists but now that I have shifted my attention to health related science and climate related science, I find the same impermeability to facts and logic. Hence this blog and my FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC blog. I may add that I did not come to either health or environmental research entirely without credentials. I had several academic papers published in both fields during my social science research career

Update: After 8 years of confronting the frankly childish standard of reasoning that pervades the medical journals, I have given up. I have put the blog into hibernation. In extreme cases I may put up here some of the more egregious examples of medical "wisdom" that I encounter. Greenies and food freaks seem to be largely coterminous. My regular bacon & egg breakfasts would certainly offend both -- if only because of the resultant methane output

Since my academic background is in the social sciences, it is reasonable to ask what a social scientist is doing talking about global warming. My view is that my expertise is the most relevant of all. It seems clear to me from what you will see on this blog that belief in global warming is very poorly explained by history, chemistry, physics or statistics.

Warmism is prophecy, not science. Science cannot foretell the future. Science can make very accurate predictions based on known regularities in nature (e.g. predicting the orbits of the inner planets) but Warmism is the exact opposite of that. It predicts a DEPARTURE from the known regularities of nature. If we go by the regularities of nature, we are on the brink of an ice age.

And from a philosophy of science viewpoint, far from being "the science", Warmism is not even an attempt at a factual statement, let alone being science. It is not a meaningful statement about the world. Why? Because it is unfalsifiable -- making it a religious, not a scientific statement. To be a scientific statement, there would have to be some conceivable event that disproved it -- but there appears to be none. ANY event is hailed by Warmists as proving their contentions. Only if Warmists were able to specify some fact or event that would disprove their theory would it have any claim to being a scientific statement. So the explanation for Warmist beliefs has to be primarily a psychological and political one -- which makes it my field

And, after all, Al Gore's academic qualifications are in social science also -- albeit very pissant qualifications.

A "geriatric" revolt: The scientists who reject Warmism tend to be OLD! Your present blogger is one of those. There are tremendous pressures to conformity in academe and the generally Leftist orientation of academe tends to pressure everyone within it to agree to ideas that suit the Left. And Warmism is certainly one of those ideas. So old guys are the only ones who can AFFORD to declare the Warmists to be unclothed. They either have their careers well-established (with tenure) or have reached financial independence (retirement) and so can afford to call it like they see it. In general, seniors in society today are not remotely as helpful to younger people as they once were. But their opposition to the Warmist hysteria will one day show that seniors are not completely irrelevant after all. Experience does count (we have seen many such hysterias in the past and we have a broader base of knowledge to call on) and our independence is certainly an enormous strength. Some of us are already dead. (Reid Bryson and John Daly are particularly mourned) and some of us are very senior indeed (e.g. Bill Gray and Vince Gray) but the revolt we have fostered is ever growing so we have not labored in vain.

A Warmist backs down: "No one knows exactly how far rising carbon concentrations affect temperatures" -- Stefan Rahmstorf, a scientist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.

Jimmy Carter Classic Quote from 1977: "Because we are now running out of gas and oil, we must prepare quickly for a third change, to strict conservation and to the use of coal and permanent renewable energy sources, like solar power.


Today’s environmental movement is the current manifestation of the totalitarian impulse. It is ironic that the same people who condemn the black or brown shirts of the pre WW2 period are blind to the current manifestation simply because the shirts are green.

Climate is just the sum of weather. So if you cannot forecast the weather a month in advance, you will not be able to forecast the climate 50 years in advance. And official meteorologists such as Britain's Met Office and Australia's BOM, are very poor forecasters of weather. The Met office has in fact given up on making seasonal forecasts because they have so often got such forecasts embarrassingly wrong. Their global-warming-powered "models" just did not deliver

Here's how that "97% consensus" figure was arrived at

97% of scientists want to get another research grant

Hearing a Government Funded Scientist say let me tell you the truth, is like hearing a Used Car Salesman saying let me tell you the truth.

A strange Green/Left conceit: They seem to think (e.g. here) that no-one should spend money opposing them and that conservative donors must not support the election campaigns of Congressmen they agree with

David Brower, founder Sierra Club: “Childbearing should be a punishable crime against society, unless the parents hold a government license"

To Greenies, Genghis Khan was a good guy, believe it or not. They love that he killed so many people.

Greenie antisemitism

After three exceptionally cold winters in the Northern hemisphere, the Warmists are chanting: "Warming causes cold". Even if we give that a pass for logic, it still inspires the question: "Well, what are we worried about"? Cold is not going to melt the icecaps is it?"

It's a central (but unproven) assumption of the Warmist "models" that clouds cause warming. Odd that it seems to cool the temperature down when clouds appear overhead!

To make out that the essentially trivial warming of the last 150 years poses some sort of threat, Warmists postulate positive feedbacks that might cut in to make the warming accelerate in the near future. Amid their theories about feedbacks, however, they ignore the one feedback that is no theory: The reaction of plants to CO2. Plants gobble up CO2 and the more CO2 there is the more plants will flourish and hence gobble up yet more CO2. And the increasing crop yields of recent years show that plantlife is already flourishing more. The recent rise in CO2 will therefore soon be gobbled up and will no longer be around to bother anyone. Plants provide a huge NEGATIVE feedback in response to increases in atmospheric CO2

Every green plant around us is made out of carbon dioxide that the plant has grabbed out of the atmosphere. That the plant can get its carbon from such a trace gas is one of the miracles of life. It admittedly uses the huge power of the sun to accomplish such a vast filtrative task but the fact that a dumb plant can harness the power of the sun so effectively is also a wonder. We live on a rather improbable planet. If a science fiction writer elsewhere in the universe described a world like ours he might well be ridiculed for making up such an implausible tale.

Greenies are the sand in the gears of modern civilization -- and they intend to be.

The Greenie message is entirely emotional and devoid of all logic. They say that polar ice will melt and cause a big sea-level rise. Yet 91% of the world's glacial ice is in Antarctica, where the average temperature is around minus 40 degrees Celsius. The melting point of ice is zero degrees. So for the ice to melt on any scale the Antarctic temperature would need to rise by around 40 degrees, which NOBODY is predicting. The median Greenie prediction is about 4 degrees. So where is the huge sea level rise going to come from? Mars? And the North polar area is mostly sea ice and melting sea ice does not raise the sea level at all. Yet Warmists constantly hail any sign of Arctic melting. That the melting of floating ice does not raise the water level is known as Archimedes' principle. Archimedes demonstrated it around 2,500 years ago. That Warmists have not yet caught up with that must be just about the most inspissated ignorance imaginable. The whole Warmist scare defies the most basic physics. Yet at the opening of 2011 we find the following unashamed lying by James Hansen: "We will lose all the ice in the polar ice cap in a couple of decades". Sadly, what the Vulgate says in John 1:5 is still only very partially true: "Lux in tenebris lucet". There is still much darkness in the minds of men.

The repeated refusal of Warmist "scientists" to make their raw data available to critics is such a breach of scientific protocol that it amounts to a confession in itself. Note, for instance Phil Jones' Feb 21, 2005 response to Warwick Hughes' request for his raw climate data: "We have 25 years or so invested in the work. Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?" Looking for things that might be wrong with a given conclusion is of course central to science. But Warmism cannot survive such scrutiny. So even after "Climategate", the secrecy goes on.

Most Greenie causes are at best distractions from real environmental concerns (such as land degradation) and are more motivated by a hatred of people than by any care for the environment

Global warming has taken the place of Communism as an absurdity that "liberals" will defend to the death regardless of the evidence showing its folly. Evidence never has mattered to real Leftists

‘Global warming’ has become the grand political narrative of the age, replacing Marxism as a dominant force for controlling liberty and human choices. -- Prof. P. Stott

Comparing climate alarmist Hansen to Cassandra is WRONG. Cassandra's (Greek mythology) dire prophecies were never believed but were always right. Hansen's dire prophecies are usually believed but are always wrong (Prof. Laurence Gould, U of Hartford, CT)

The modern environmental movement arose out of the wreckage of the New Left. They call themselves Green because they're too yellow to admit they're really Reds. So Lenin's birthday was chosen to be the date of Earth Day. Even a moderate politician like Al Gore has been clear as to what is needed. In "Earth in the Balance", he wrote that saving the planet would require a "wrenching transformation of society".

For centuries there was a scientific consensus which said that fire was explained by the release of an invisible element called phlogiston. That theory is universally ridiculed today. Global warming is the new phlogiston. Though, now that we know how deliberate the hoax has been, it might be more accurate to call global warming the New Piltdown Man. The Piltdown hoax took 40 years to unwind. I wonder....

Motives: Many people would like to be kind to others so Leftists exploit that with their nonsense about equality. Most people want a clean, green environment so Greenies exploit that by inventing all sorts of far-fetched threats to the environment. But for both, the real motive is generally to promote themselves as wiser and better than everyone else, truth regardless.

Policies: The only underlying theme that makes sense of all Greenie policies is hatred of people. Hatred of other people has been a Greenie theme from way back. In a report titled "The First Global Revolution" (1991, p. 104) published by the "Club of Rome", a Greenie panic outfit, we find the following statement: "In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill.... All these dangers are caused by human intervention... The real enemy, then, is humanity itself." See here for many more examples of prominent Greenies saying how much and how furiously they hate you.

After fighting a 70 year war to destroy red communism we face another life-or-death struggle in the 21st century against green communism.

The conventional wisdom of the day is often spectacularly wrong. The most popular and successful opera of all time is undoubtedly "Carmen" by Georges Bizet. Yet it was much criticized when first performed and the unfortunate Bizet died believing that it was a flop. Similarly, when the most iconic piece of 20th century music was first performed in 1913-- Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring" -- half the audience walked out. Those of us who defy the conventional wisdom about climate are actually better off than that. Unlike Bizet and Stravinsky in 1913, we KNOW that we will eventually be vindicated -- because all that supports Warmism is a crumbling edifice of guesswork ("models").

Al Gore won a political prize for an alleged work of science. That rather speaks for itself, doesn't it?

Jim Hansen and his twin

Getting rich and famous through alarmism: Al Gore is well-known but note also James Hansen. He has for decades been a senior, presumably well-paid, employee at NASA. In 2001 he was the recipient of a $250,000 Heinz Award. In 2007 Time magazine designated him a Hero of the Environment. That same year he pocketed one-third of a $1 million Dan David Prize. In 2008, the American Association for the Advancement of Science presented him with its Scientific Freedom and Responsibility Award. In 2010 he landed a $100,000 Sophie Prize. He pulled in a total of $1.2 million in 2010. Not bad for a government bureaucrat.

See the original global Warmist in action here: "The icecaps are melting and all world is drowning to wash away the sin"

I am not a global warming skeptic nor am I a global warming denier. I am a global warming atheist. I don't believe one bit of it. That the earth's climate changes is undeniable. Only ignoramuses believe that climate stability is normal. But I see NO evidence to say that mankind has had anything to do with any of the changes observed -- and much evidence against that claim.

Seeing that we are all made of carbon, the time will come when people will look back on the carbon phobia of the early 21st century as too incredible to be believed

Meanwhile, however, let me venture a tentative prophecy. Prophecies are almost always wrong but here goes: Given the common hatred of carbon (Warmists) and salt (Food freaks) and given the fact that we are all made of carbon, salt, water and calcium (with a few additives), I am going to prophecy that at some time in the future a hatred of nitrogen will emerge. Why? Because most of the air that we breathe is nitrogen. We live at the bottom of a nitrogen sea. Logical to hate nitrogen? NO. But probable: Maybe. The Green/Left is mad enough. After all, nitrogen is a CHEMICAL -- and we can't have that!

UPDATE to the above: It seems that I am a true prophet

The intellectual Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius (AD 121-180) must have foreseen Global Warmism. He said: "The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane."

The Holy Grail for most scientists is not truth but research grants. And the global warming scare has produced a huge downpour of money for research. Any mystery why so many scientists claim some belief in global warming?

For many people, global warming seems to have taken the place of "The Jews" -- a convenient but false explanation for any disliked event. Prof. Brignell has some examples.

Global warming skeptics are real party-poopers. It's so wonderful to believe that you have a mission to save the world.

There is an "ascetic instinct" (or perhaps a "survivalist instinct") in many people that causes them to delight in going without material comforts. Monasteries and nunneries were once full of such people -- with the Byzantine stylites perhaps the most striking example. Many Greenies (other than Al Gore and his Hollywood pals) have that instinct too but in the absence of strong orthodox religious committments they have to convince themselves that the world NEEDS them to live in an ascetic way. So their personal emotional needs lead them to press on us all a delusional belief that the planet needs "saving".

The claim that oil is a fossil fuel is another great myth and folly of the age. They are now finding oil at around seven MILES beneath the sea bed -- which is incomparably further down than any known fossil. The abiotic oil theory is not as yet well enough developed to generate useful predictions but that is also true of fossil fuel theory

Help keep the planet Green! Maximize your CO2 and CH4 output!

Global Warming=More Life; Global Cooling=More Death.

The inconvenient truth about biological effects of "Ocean Acidification"

Cook the crook who cooks the books

The great and fraudulent scare about lead

Green/Left denial of the facts explained: "Rejection lies in this, that when the light came into the world men preferred darkness to light; preferred it, because their doings were evil. Anyone who acts shamefully hates the light, will not come into the light, for fear that his doings will be found out. Whereas the man whose life is true comes to the light" John 3:19-21 (Knox)

Against the long history of huge temperature variation in the earth's climate (ice ages etc.), the .6 of one degree average rise reported by the U.N. "experts" for the entire 20th century (a rise so small that you would not be able to detect such a difference personally without instruments) shows, if anything, that the 20th century was a time of exceptional temperature stability.

Recent NASA figures tell us that there was NO warming trend in the USA during the 20th century. If global warming is occurring, how come it forgot the USA?

Warmists say that the revised NASA figures do not matter because they cover only the USA -- and the rest of the world is warming nicely. But it is not. There has NEVER been any evidence that the Southern hemisphere is warming. See here. So the warming pattern sure is looking moth-eaten.

The latest scare is the possible effect of extra CO2 on the world’s oceans, because more CO2 lowers the pH of seawater. While it is claimed that this makes the water more acidic, this is misleading. Since seawater has a pH around 8.1, it will take an awful lot of CO2 it to even make the water neutral (pH=7), let alone acidic (pH less than 7).

In fact, ocean acidification is a scientific impossibility. Henry's Law mandates that warming oceans will outgas CO2 to the atmosphere (as the UN's own documents predict it will), making the oceans less acid. Also, more CO2 would increase calcification rates. No comprehensive, reliable measurement of worldwide oceanic acid/base balance has ever been carried out: therefore, there is no observational basis for the computer models' guess that acidification of 0.1 pH units has occurred in recent decades.

The chaos theory people have told us for years that the air movement from a single butterfly's wing in Brazil can cause an unforeseen change in our weather here. Now we are told that climate experts can "model" the input of zillions of such incalculable variables over periods of decades to accurately forecast global warming 50 years hence. Give us all a break!

If you doubt the arrogance [of the global warming crowd, you haven't seen that Newsweek cover story that declared the global warming debate over. Consider: If Newton's laws of motion could, after 200 years of unfailing experimental and experiential confirmation, be overthrown, it requires religious fervor to believe that global warming -- infinitely more untested, complex and speculative -- is a closed issue

Scientists have politics too -- sometimes extreme politics. Read this: "This crippling of individuals I consider the worst evil of capitalism... I am convinced there is only one way to eliminate these grave evils, namely through the establishment of a socialist economy, accompanied by an educational system which would be oriented toward social goals. In such an economy, the means of production are owned by society itself and are utilized in a planned fashion. A planned economy, which adjusts production to the needs of the community, would distribute the work to be done among all those able to work and would guarantee a livelihood to every man, woman, and child." -- Albert Einstein

The "precautionary principle" is a favourite Greenie idea -- but isn't that what George Bush was doing when he invaded Iraq? Wasn't that a precaution against Saddam getting or having any WMDs? So Greenies all agree with the Iraq intervention? If not, why not?

A classic example of how the sensationalist media distort science to create climate panic is here.

There is a very readable summary of the "Hockey Stick" fraud here

The Lockwood & Froehlich paper was designed to rebut Durkin's "Great Global Warming Swindle" film. It is a rather confused paper -- acknowledging yet failing to account fully for the damping effect of the oceans, for instance -- but it is nonetheless valuable to climate atheists. The concession from a Greenie source that fluctuations in the output of the sun have driven climate change for all but the last 20 years (See the first sentence of the paper) really is invaluable. And the basic fact presented in the paper -- that solar output has in general been on the downturn in recent years -- is also amusing to see. Surely even a crazed Greenie mind must see that the sun's influence has not stopped and that reduced solar output will soon start COOLING the earth! Unprecedented July 2007 cold weather throughout the Southern hemisphere might even have been the first sign that the cooling is happening. And the fact that warming plateaued in 1998 is also a good sign that we are moving into a cooling phase. As is so often the case, the Greenies have got the danger exactly backwards. See my post of 7.14.07 and very detailed critiques here and here and here for more on the Lockwood paper and its weaknesses.

As the Greenies are now learning, even strong statistical correlations may disappear if a longer time series is used. A remarkable example from Sociology: "The modern literature on hate crimes began with a remarkable 1933 book by Arthur Raper titled The Tragedy of Lynching. Raper assembled data on the number of lynchings each year in the South and on the price of an acre’s yield of cotton. He calculated the correla­tion coefficient between the two series at –0.532. In other words, when the economy was doing well, the number of lynchings was lower.... In 2001, Donald Green, Laurence McFalls, and Jennifer Smith published a paper that demolished the alleged connection between economic condi­tions and lynchings in Raper’s data. Raper had the misfortune of stopping his anal­ysis in 1929. After the Great Depression hit, the price of cotton plummeted and economic condi­tions deteriorated, yet lynchings continued to fall. The correlation disappeared altogether when more years of data were added." So we must be sure to base our conclusions on ALL the data. In the Greenie case, the correlation between CO2 rise and global temperature rise stopped in 1998 -- but that could have been foreseen if measurements taken in the first half of the 20th century had been considered.

Relying on the popular wisdom can even hurt you personally: "The scientific consensus of a quarter-century ago turned into the arthritic nightmare of today."

Greenie-approved sources of electricity (windmills and solar cells) require heavy government subsidies to be competitive with normal electricity generators so a Dutch word for Greenie power seems graphic to me: "subsidieslurpers" (subsidy gobblers)


"Tongue Tied"
"Dissecting Leftism" (Backup here)
"Australian Politics"
"Education Watch International"
"Political Correctness Watch"
"Greenie Watch"
Western Heart


"Marx & Engels in their own words"
"A scripture blog"
"Some memoirs"
To be continued ....
Coral Reef Compendium.
IQ Compendium
Queensland Police
Australian Police News
Paralipomena (3)
Of Interest
Dagmar Schellenberger
My alternative Wikipedia


"Food & Health Skeptic"
"Eye on Britain"
"Immigration Watch International".
"Leftists as Elitists"
Socialized Medicine
QANTAS -- A dying octopus
BRIAN LEITER (Ladderman)
Obama Watch
Obama Watch (2)
Dissecting Leftism -- Large font site
Michael Darby
Paralipomena (2)
AGL -- A bumbling monster
Telstra/Bigpond follies
Optus bungling
Bank of Queensland blues

There are also two blogspot blogs which record what I think are my main recent articles here and here. Similar content can be more conveniently accessed via my subject-indexed list of short articles here or here (I rarely write long articles these days)

Main academic menu
Menu of recent writings
Basic home page
Pictorial Home Page.
Selected pictures from blogs
Another picture page (Best with broadband. Rarely updated)

Note: If the link to one of my articles is not working, the article concerned can generally be viewed by prefixing to the filename the following: