Friday, February 24, 2017



Trump readies slew of new orders targeting EPA


President Trump is planning to issue executive orders this week to begin rolling back the centerpiece of President Obama's climate change agenda with several other regulations.

Trump is expected to soon issue the orders targeting regulations put into place by the Environmental Protection Agency, including the Clean Power Plan, which directs states to cut greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants.

The EPA climate plan was halted a year ago by the Supreme Court until the courts can rule on litigation by 28 state attorneys general, the coal industry and hundreds of individual companies and industry groups.

The order is expected to direct the agency to redo the climate change rule, which would be different from asking the agency to rescind the regulation altogether. Ultimately, direction on what to do about the greenhouse gas rule will have to come from the courts.

But Trump isn't planning on stopping there. The president also will issue a separate order targeting the EPA's Waters of the U.S. Rule, which greatly expanded the agency's jurisdiction over waterways to include everything from major waterways to drainage ponds on private lands. Both the Clean Power Plan and the Waters of the U.S. Rule have been long-time targets of the Republican Party.

Reports also say to expect a third Trump action to end the Department of Interior's moratorium on new coal mining leases put in place by the Obama administration.

EPA officials told Reuters that they were told to expect the executive actions shortly after EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt was confirmed, but the exact timing of the orders is unknown.

Pruitt was confirmed by the Senate on Friday and sworn in as the nation's 14th EPA administrator. He addressed EPA employees briefly Tuesday during his first full day as as head of the agency.

SOURCE




Pruitt's EPA Will Be Better for Property Rights, States.

His Rule of Law record is exactly why ecofascists hate him so much

The sky is falling, and the oceans will soon cover the land. That is what Chicken Little leftists would have us believe following the confirmation of former Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as director of the Environmental Protection Agency.

The hysterical warnings from the anti-free market crowd were as ludicrous as they were predictable; Pruitt is a conservative, so he wants dirty water, dirty air, toxic land and he will allow corporations free rein to dump chemical sludge into our pristine waterways.

In reality, Pruitt is not a conservative hardliner at all. Unlike many conservatives, he doesn’t want to get rid of the EPA, but believes it can play a vital role in protecting the environment. What makes Pruitt unacceptable to the radical Left is his respect for the constitutional power of the states to direct their own affairs, his record of fighting to protect private property rights, and his respect for the Rule of Law.

For decades progressives have used federal agencies, and the mountains of regulations they generate, to achieve through the federal bureaucracy (if not the courts) what they have been unable to achieve at the polls. The EPA has become one of the most dangerous of all federal agencies, not only abusing its power but destroying the lives of innocent Americans in the process.

Just ask Andy Johnson, a Wyoming farmer who sued the EPA after he was fined $16 million for building a small fishing pond on his property. After having done his due diligence and receiving all necessary permits and approvals to build a small pond on his property, the EPA claimed Johnson violated federal law, arguing his pond was subject to the Clean Water Act. After years of harassment and threats by the agency, Johnson reached a settlement last May where all charges and fines were dropped in exchange for planting willow trees around the pond to prevent erosion.

Johnson’s story is just one of thousands like it, and progressive environmentalists fear Pruitt because not only has he promised to end such abuses, but as Oklahoma attorney general he filed 14 lawsuits against the EPA to stop these types of abuse.

In a recent interview, Pruitt explained his philosophy of protecting the environment while simultaneously protecting property rights: “I reject this paradigm that says we can’t be both pro-environment and pro-energy. We are blessed with great national resources, and we should be good stewards of those. But we’ve been the best in the world at showing you do that while also growing jobs and the economy. Too many people put on a jersey in this fight. I want to send the message that we can and will do both.”

In a departure from the radicalism of the Obama administration, Pruitt sees it as his job to enforce the law as written, rather than create law through regulatory fiat or “sue and settle” (getting friendly organizations to sue before a friendly judge, and create law through the ruling). Pruitt argues, “Agencies exist to administer the law. Congress passes statutes, and those statutes are very clear on the job EPA has to do. We’re going to do that job.”

In light of that philosophy, Pruitt has already begun to roll back Obama administration excesses and abuses. He is withdrawing from the Clean Power Plan (Obama’s climate regulation scheme geared toward destroying the fossil fuel industry), and the 2015 Waters of the United States rule, through which the Obama EPA quite literally claimed the authority to regulate and control every single stream, creek, pond or mud hole as a tributary to a “navigable waterway.” He also declared his agency will review the Clean Air Act to determine whether it even has the authority to regulate carbon dioxide, which has been the lynchpin of the progressive effort to give government control over industry.

Instead, says Pruitt, his focus will be on cleaning up the air and water of the United States to correct and prevent problems like the lead poisoning of the Flint, Michigan water supply, and the unfolding failure of the Oroville Dam in California, which is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk. He also wants to revamp the EPA’s process for producing environmental data to make it scientifically driven rather than ideologically driven, in order to restore trust in the reports produced by his agency.

He also acknowledged the primary role of the states in keeping the environment safe, arguing for federalism: “Every statute makes clear this is supposed to be a cooperative relationship. … Congress understood that a one-size-fits-all model doesn’t work for environmental regulation, and … the state departments of environmental quality have an enormous role to play.” He vehemently opposes the position of the Obama EPA, which saw the states as “a vessel of federal will.”

So while career progressives in the EPA seek to undermine their new boss, and while Hollywood elitists like Susan Sarandon wring their hands and declare Pruitt’s appointment to be the “end of the EPA,” average Americans can sleep soundly. There is now a man at the head of that agency who wants to make sure they have clean air to breathe and clean water to drink, while also making sure bureaucratic thugs don’t ruin their lives if they decide to build a pond or clear brush off their land.

And that is welcomed news indeed.

SOURCE




NASA to Stop Shilling for Big Green, Restart Exploring Space…

“And would sir like a regular or large fries, with that? And how about a McFlurry?”

I do hope that Gavin “Toast” Schmidt, the head of NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS), followed the advice I gave him a few months back. Because it now looks very much as if he and many of his colleagues are about to face exciting new job opportunities, hopefully in areas best suited to their talents, such as the challenging world of fast-food retail.

Yes, as we predicted, NASA is going to be stripped of the two main roles it enjoyed under the Obama administration – Muslim outreach and green propaganda – and return to its original day (and night) job as an agency dedicated to space exploration.

    The U.S. Senate passed legislation recently cutting funding for NASA’s global warming research.

    The House is expected to pass the bill, and President Trump will likely sign it. Supporters say it “re-balances” NASA’s budget back toward space exploration and away from global warming and earth science research. Republicans plan to end the more than $2 billion NASA spends on its Earth Science Mission Directorate.

    “By rebalancing, I’d like for more funds to go into space exploration; we’re not going to zero out earth sciences,” Texas Republican Rep. Lamar Smith, who chairs the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, told E&E News. “I’d like for us to remember what our priorities are, and there are another dozen agencies that study earth science and climate change, and they can continue to do that.”

Before we shed too many tears for the plight of Gavin Schmidt and the rest of his global warming research team, though, let’s just pause to reflect on how much damage they have done to the cause of honest science over the years and what eye-wateringly vast quantities of our money they have wasted.

A good place to start is this excellent piece by Steve Goddard, entitled The Pause Is Real: NASA Temperatures Aren’t.

Here is the damning chart that says it all:



How did a supposedly respectable government agency get away with such blatant fraud?

Well, one answer is that it was encouraged to do so by the US government which paid its Earth Science research division $2 billion a year, while giving only $781.5 million and $826.7 million to its astrophysics and space technology divisions. Obama wanted “global warming” to be real and dangerous: and – lo! – thanks to the magic of his crack prestidigitators at NASA, NOAA and the rest, it was.

But the longer answer is that this is what happens when green ideologues are allowed to infiltrate and hijack government institutions. As we’ve reported before, NASA has been caught out fiddling temperature data on “an unbelievable scale”. So too has NOAA. That’s because their global warming departments are mostly run by true believers – scientists who want to show the world that global warming is a major threat in urgent need of more grant funding, regardless of what the actual temperature data shows. Hence the many, many adjustments.

This has done tremendous damage not just in the US but across the world because it has enabled green propagandists to point at the dodgy adjusted data from NASA and NOAA and claim: “The Experts say…”

Now, thanks to Donald Trump, that fraud is about to come to a sudden and painful end. It never ceases to amaze and nauseate me that more people, especially on the right, aren’t more grateful for what is being done here.

While mainstream media commentators on both left and right bloviate about Trump’s style (clearly they prefer Obama’s empty rhetoric) and stoke up fake news stories about Russian plots, Trump is busily getting on with one of the most valuable and important missions ever conducted by a US president: he is putting an end to the biggest and most expensive scientific scam in history.

Oh, and he is also working wonders for property rights and business by rescinding such damaging regulations as the Waters Of The US and the Climate Action Plan.

    A source briefed on the matter told The Washington Post one of the orders “will instruct the Environmental Protection Agency to begin rewriting the 2015 regulation that limits greenhouse-gas emissions from existing electric utilities” and order “the Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to lift a moratorium on federal coal leasing.”

    Trump will issue a second order instructing the EPA and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to rewrite the “Waters of the U.S.” (WOTUS) rule that expanded federal control over rivers, streams and wetlands — even those on private property.

If ever a swamp needed draining, it’s the swamp of the $1.5 trillion environmental scam. This could have gone on for ever and ever. Our grandchildren ought to be properly grateful to President Trump that it didn’t.

SOURCE




More speculations and surmises

What if ....

In Geneva, Switzerland, yesterday, the IPCC named the team of 86 experts from 39 countries that will author the investigation on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the impact of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty.

The Special Report, which is due to be published in 2018, was commissioned by the Paris agreement COP21 in 2015. It will be a robust scientific report into ways to arrest global warming levels by assessing research and highlighting policy options available to support the achievement of a climate safe, equitable and sustainable world.

Head of UC’s Department of Political Science and International Relations and director of the Sustainable Citizenship and Civic Imagination: Hei Puāwaitanga research group, Assoc Prof Hayward will be using her expertise in the field of sustainable development, poverty eradication, and reducing inequalities.

“We need interdisciplinary thinking to address complex serious problems, and it is heartening to see recognition for the way Arts and Humanities can also assist us in tackling some of our world’s greatest challenges,” she says.

While Assoc Prof Hayward is the only New Zealander on this IPCC special report team, she says other New Zealanders are expected to be nominated to write later reports.

Professor Ian Wright, UC Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation), observed that an international perspective and community engagement are key drivers for the future of the institution.

“This type of activity, where UC academic expertise is being used to underpin mitigation strategies to a critical global issue, underlines the fact that the University of Canterbury is engaging with local, regional, national and international communities, including business.”

SOURCE




Greens cowardice on Islam, other key issues, matches their ignorance

Chris Kenny discusses Australia's Green party:

Islam is the most feminist religion. Wind energy is reliable. Border security is unnecessary. The US alliance is inimical to our national interest. The Australian is a race-baiting newspaper.

The Australian Greens have strayed so far from reality in their post-truth universe that they must have become confused between the real world and a flashback to some trip in the 70s.

They have become the lunatics at the bottom of the garden shouting at the moon.

It would be hilarious if it weren’t so dangerous, amusing if it wasn’t so damaging to our nation. “The Australian, or as it may be better described, the Q Society Gazette,” said Greens senator Nick McKim in the Senate today, “has become little more than a loss-making, race-baiting rag.”

Not only do these political fringe dwellers combine with Labor and crossbench senators to undermine the nation’s fiscal position and economic future, but they meddle incessantly and odiously in identity politics, fuelling resentment and division, and spitting bile at mainstream voters, their concerns and their values.

This latest foray from Greens leader, Richard Di Natale, and McKim has come after today’s page one article by Caroline Overington about Yassmin Abdel-Magied.

Overington revealed how taxpayers had funded the writer’s tour to majority Muslim nations in North Africa and the Middle East to promote her book and her views.

It was highly relevant and topical given Abdel-Magied’s appearance on Q&A on Monday night, when she attempted to justify sharia law, and, astonishingly, said Islam was “the most feminist” religion.

In return for its reporting on this issue, this newspaper was singled out by the Greens leader who claimed we had attacked Abdel-Magied and that our reporting was fuelling tensions around Islam.

Overington revealed Abdel-Magied’s tour took her to a range of countries where women are treated appallingly.

She did nothing but put salient facts into the debate. She can’t do much about her skin colour but Overington is neither middle-aged nor male and anyone who reads her work knows she is a strong feminist.

McKim and Di Natale, on the other hand, are white non-Muslim men eager to parade their tolerance for Islam while wilfully blind on equality for women behind the veil.

Their cultural and political cowardice is matched only by their ignorance.

SOURCE

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Thursday, February 23, 2017



Fake news at the NYT

The article below appeared in the NYT as "How an Interoffice Spat Erupted Into a Climate-Change Furor".  In the best traditions of the Green/Left it is an attempt to discredit scientific dissent by "ad hominem" abuse.  It refers to the Bates revelations about the Tom Karl "pause" paper but has no science in it at all.  It is just an extended effort to discredit the motives of Bates.

It gives no answer to the important allegation that Karl constructed his temperature database by using invalid ocean temperature measurements and mentions not at all the Fyfe et al. paper, in which some prominent Warmist scientists also distanced themselves from the Karl paper. The article is a closing of the ranks, nothing more.  It is a desperate attempt to trivialize an important issue of scientific integrity.


A few weeks ago, on an obscure climate-change blog, a retired government scientist named John Bates blasted his former boss on an esoteric point having to do with archiving temperature data.

It was little more than lingering workplace bad blood, said Dr. Bates’s former co-workers at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Dr. Bates had felt he deserved his boss’s job at NOAA, they said, not the demotion he received.

“He’s retaliating. It’s like grade school,” said Glenn Rutledge, a former physical scientist at NOAA who worked with Dr. Bates.

But in what seems like a remarkable example of office politics gone horribly wrong, within days the accusations were amplified and sensationalized — in the pages of the British tabloid The Mail on Sunday — inciting a global furor among climate-change deniers.

The Mail claimed that Dr. Bates had revealed fraud in important research by NOAA that supports the widely held belief that climate change is real. “How world leaders were duped into investing billions over manipulated global warming data,” the article’s headline said.

The scientific community swiftly shot down the accusations, and affirmed the accuracy of the research. And Dr. Bates himself later stated in an interview with a business news site that he had not meant to suggest that his former boss had played fast and loose with temperature data. “The issue here is not an issue of tampering with data,” Dr. Bates said.

Still, Dr. Bates has emerged as a hero to some conservative media outlets and politicians, and among climate-change deniers on Facebook and Twitter.

The Texas congressman and longtime climate skeptic Lamar Smith posted a link to a summary of the claims multiple times on Twitter. The House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, which Mr. Smith heads, took up the controversy at a hearing.

NOAA itself is now bringing in independent investigators to review Dr. Bates’s claims. “NOAA takes seriously any accusations that its policies and procedures have not been followed,” a spokesman, Scott Smullen, said in a statement.

Dr. John Bates, a retired government scientist, at his home in Arden, N.C. His criticism of a former boss on an esoteric point about archiving temperature data resulted in a furor among climate-change deniers. Credit Chris Bott
Dr. Bates did not respond to repeated requests for comment nor to detailed questions about the incident and his former co-workers’ characterizations.

Interviews with six of his former colleagues at NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, including two former bosses, painted a picture of a room filled with brilliant scientists, and — like many workplaces — its fair share of mundane professional spats and jealousies.

Dr. Bates was demoted from a managerial role in 2012 under Thomas Karl — the lead author of the study Dr. Bates has questioned — after complaints over Dr. Bates’s professional conduct, according to the former colleagues and supervisors. He also became frustrated that his efforts to enforce strict procedures in the archiving of climate data were not getting as much attention as he had hoped.

“He was often heard saying that he, not Karl, should be running the center,” said Marjorie McGuirk, former chief of staff at the data center.

At the heart of the furor is a study led by Dr. Karl, the former director of NOAA’s data center. The NOAA center handles the nation’s trove of climate and weather data. Dr. Karl’s study had refuted earlier work suggesting that global warming had slowed earlier in this century.

According to the article in The Mail, Dr. Bates claimed that the study relied on problematic data. The researchers threw out good data on sea temperatures recorded on buoys, and “corrected” it with what he said was bad data from ships, Dr. Bates said, according to The Mail.

“You never change good data to agree with bad, but that’s what they did — so as to make it look as if the sea was warmer,” he was quoted in The Mail as saying. The Mail on Sunday article also argued that the study had been rushed into the journal Science to influence the 2015 Paris climate deal, in which world leaders agreed to curb planet-warming emissions.

David Rose, the author of The Mail on Sunday article, said in a Twitter correspondence that he stood by his reporting.

The Mail on Sunday, together with its sister tabloid, The Daily Mail, in the past has been accused of publishing work that disputed the widely held scientific belief that warming is the result of human activity.

The outcry over Dr. Bates’s claims points to a push by some in the right-wing media to cast doubt on established climate science, and to dispel public support for emissions regulations. Breitbart, the right-wing website formerly run by Stephen K. Bannon, President Trump’s chief strategist, repeatedly played up Dr. Bates’s claims. “John Bates has provided the smoking gun,” it reported. Fox News called the accusations “explosive.”

Rick Perry, the former Texas governor who is President Trump’s pick for energy secretary, at his conformation hearing last month. Mr. Perry, once a climate-change denier, now acknowledges that the climate is warming. Credit Al Drago/The New York Times
Breitbart and Fox News did not respond to a request for comment.

“I think there’s already been enormous damage,” said Bob Ward, a researcher at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics. “What they’re trying to do is to slow the pace of action on climate change.”

In his interview with the site E&E News this month, Dr. Bates stated that the issue wasn’t with data tampering. Rather, he said, his issue was that some of the processed data used in the report wasn’t subsequently archived in accordance with strict protocols that Dr. Bates had developed. In other words, it was a filing problem, not a science problem.

The paper’s authors disputed that strict archiving of the calculations was necessary, because all of the original data used in the report was properly archived. And the data was subsequently made available to other researchers, said Tom Peterson, a research meteorologist who is a co-author of the study with Dr. Karl.

SOURCE




Sea Level Rise: A Reason to Drown in Fear?

The debate isn't so much over the facts of warming but how to respond

The quibbling over how much warming the world has actually seen is back in the news thanks to new allegations from Dr. John Bates, a former NOAA scientist who says the agency used bogus techniques to discredit the recent global warming pause. Given the long history of accusations against the agency — including longstanding charges of rewriting logbook data — these assertions should be investigated, regardless of what may or may not turn up. Perhaps the agency is guilty, or perhaps not.

But let’s set aside for a moment the wrangling over the magnitude of warming and lay out what everyone can agree on. We know unequivocally that global temperatures have gradually warmed for more than a century now. (This acknowledgement, by the way, reveals the Left’s slandering of conservatives as “climate deniers” to be all the more vindictive). We also know that periods of cooling or static measurements have occasionally interrupted this gradual warming, but it hasn’t been enough to reduce the overall upward trend. And finally, we know that global carbon dioxide emissions have risen to slightly more than 400 parts per million (ppm), an increase from 340 ppm in the early 1980s.

It’s what to extract from this information that results in harsh disagreement and even indignation. How much of the warming is natural? How much is cyclical? How much (if any) is driven by CO2? If it’s a mix of man-made and cyclical effects, which one is disproportionately to blame for meteorological changes? The Left, in addition to blaming climate change for what it says are worsening droughts and burgeoning heat waves, worries that sea levels, aided by the acceleration in ice loss, will wreak havoc on coastlines and nearby lowlands.

In truth, it’s admittedly a bad time for sea ice concentration. A few years ago, Antarctica was almost routinely, it seemed, breaking records in ice coverage. So it might come as a surprise today to learn that it’s now at a record low. In fact, both the North and South Poles are measuring historically low percentages. According to a large number of scientists, the continuation of global warming means coastal areas are in for a nightmare scenario. What does the data say?

Last June, NOAA reported, “Sea level has been rising over the past century, and the rate has increased in recent decades. In 2014, global sea level was 2.6 inches (67 mm) above the 1993 average — the highest annual average in the satellite record (1993-present). Sea level continues to rise at a rate of about one-eighth of an inch (3.2 mm) per year, due to a combination of melting glaciers and ice sheets, and thermal expansion of seawater as it warms.” And according to a February 2016 USA Today report, ocean levels overall increased by 5.5 inches during the 20th century.

Think about that. The rate at last check was one-eighth of an inch per year and mere inches when all added up. Assuming this is true — not to mention even accurate, considering these are such minuscule measurements for a vast swath of geography — that’s hardly what we would call a crisis, and it’s worth noting too that the way this stuff is measured has been revolutionized over time. That said, both poles are experiencing higher-than-average ice melt today, which presumably will affect this rate. But just how much?

In the same report, NOAA went on to estimate “that there is very high confidence (greater than 90% chance) that global mean sea level will rise at least 8 inches (0.2 meter) but no more than 6.6 feet (2.0 meters) by 2100.” And that’s taking into account rather extreme scenarios. Some people, particularly those along the coast, understandably worry about this (though a significant number of Americans actually enjoy the more pleasant effects of global warming, like milder winters). The question isn’t so much that global temperatures — and to a smaller degree the oceans — are rising, but why. Furthermore, how do we respond?

This is where policy disagreements come in. The bottom line is that this debate could come down to whether we want to adapt to climate change or instead attempt to mitigate its effects. NOAA says the rate at which seas are expected to rise “depends mostly on the rate of future carbon dioxide emissions and future global warming.” We contend there are very legitimate reasons to embrace CO2. Though for the most part temperatures and carbon dioxide emissions have risen in tandem, emissions alone can’t explain the periodic temperature drops and stagnations. And completely eliminating those emissions would be futile — and immensely expensive. But economic control, after all, is the real climate agenda.

As The Daily Signal’s Katie Tubb observes, “[C]limate sensitivity modeling used by the EPA shows that totally eliminating all carbon dioxide emissions in the U.S. would reduce warming by only 0.137 degree Celsius by the end of the century, and only 0.278 degree Celsius if the entire industrialized world totally eliminated all carbon dioxide emissions.” Moreover, the greening of deserts and an abundance of food for trees and vegetation are surely welcome benefits.

Whether the globe is warming or cooling, there are benefits and setbacks to both, as history demonstrates. And humans who expect to have the ability to balance the climate are significantly less realistic than those who advocate adapting, like we always have, to what comes next. Americans didn’t abandon certain areas altogether because of earthquakes; they figured out how to create stronger and more flexible structures. The same goes for places prone to tornadoes and hurricanes. Remember, temperatures have not risen at the rate at which they were projected, and the future of sea levels are equally uncertain.

Game-changing global cooling didn’t happen like the CIA and Time magazine and others warned in 1974, nor will an ice age happen by 2021, as The Washington Post forecast in 1971. On the flip side, the New York Times' 1969 warning “that the ocean at the North Pole may become an open sea within a decade or two” didn’t happen either. So take predictions with a grain of salt.

In any case, even if the threat is real, adaption creates far more economic opportunities than forcing hundreds of millions into destitution through costly taxation and regulation. So go ahead and build your beachfront home. We’ll figure out, through innovation, how to protect it if we ever reach that point. Or maybe we could just get Barack Obama to finally cash in on his 2008 promise about the “moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow…”

SOURCE




Dakota Access Pipeline protesters cost North Dakota taxpayers $33 million

Last summer, hordes of professional leftists, ne’er-do-wells, thugs, and drug users descended upon North Dakota intent upon “helping” the tribes opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline, which is being developed by Energy Transfer Partners.

The self-important radicals dubbed themselves “water protectors.”  In their view, the $3.8 billion pipeline had to be stopped because of their fervent belief in global warming and the possibility that, one day, the pipeline might leak and pollute the water.

This motley crew has been far from ideal neighbors. One activist complained that others in the group were consuming tribal resources without contributing sufficiently and seemed to view the protest as little more than a Burning Man festival. Another activist advised potential protesters not to bring alcohol or drugs and told them that “you are not on vacation.”

Due to the protesters, the tribe’s casino has seen a decline in business, which has caused a shortfall of millions of dollars in the tribe’s budget.

And the tribe is not the only one paying the price for the protest. According to a state estimate, state and local taxpayers were responsible for paying nearly $33 million to deal with the protests as of Feb. 10. With the imminent arrival of flooding season, federal authorities have ordered the squatters to leave.

In early Dec. 2016, the chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Dave Archambault II, asked protesters to leave, but hundreds chose to ignore his request. Previously, the tribal chairman had expressed concern over the fact that protesters were digging latrines in the flood plain, which could result in waste being washed into the Cannonball River.

As if that was not bad enough, protesters have also burned tires. What kind of environmentalists burn tires — willfully releasing carbon and noxious chemicals into the atmosphere?

The left, including many in the media, would have you believe that these protesters have been peaceful. The facts are otherwise. Over the past several months, protesters have flagrantly defied government orders; blocked state and county roads and railroad tracks; attacked police with pepper spray; pointed lasers at police; thrown rocks, bottles, bricks, feces, burning logs, and Molotov cocktails, among other things, at police; intentionally stampeded hundreds of bison toward police; and burned county vehicles. One protester even shot at police.

Unsurprisingly, many — over 700, in fact — have been arrested. Of those arrested, many had criminal records, and more than 90 percent were from out of state. Of course, the protesters have complained bitterly about the police response to the protesters’ criminal actions.

Nor have police been the protesters’ only targets. Protesters have sabotaged or burned construction vehicles and equipment; cut ranchers’ fences allowing bison to escape; harassed farmers and ranchers; and killed cows and bison. In one disturbing incident, protesters ran a pipeline construction worker off the road and chased and surrounded him until he was extricated by federal agents.

According to one estimate last fall, protesters had caused $10 million of damage to construction equipment. Protesters and their supporters have also phoned in numerous death threats to a local county government and local businesses.

As the number of protesters has dwindled, another problem has grown: the protesters’ piles of garbage. The tribe, working together with local and state authorities, is in the process of removing an estimated 4.5 million pounds of garbage and debris — much of it still frozen. The process was expected to take weeks; but, with snow already beginning to melt, time is running out.

About 200 vehicles, which were abandoned by protesters, are also being removed. Knowing time is of the essence, protesters continue to cause problems: just last week, they blocked several sanitation trucks from entering their camp.

Rick Manning, President of Americans for Limited Government, stated, “President Trump must investigate the funders of these polluting protesters and to send them the bill for the mess the protesters created. It is unacceptable for these costs to be borne by taxpayers and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.”

SOURCE



Our children have been brainwashed about global warming

It’s all about destroying capitalism

Yes, our people have been brainwashed from K to BA from ignorant teachers and professors who, themselves, were brainwashed before them. Nowhere in the news media or schools have the following subjects been exposed:

Christiana Figueres, the U.N.’s top climate change official, says that it’s not about the climate. It’s about redistribution of the wealth and the destruction of capitalism. In simpler terms, she intends to replace free enterprise, entrepreneurial capitalism with UN-controlled, centralized, socialized One World government and economic control.

Papal Advisor Naomi Klein admits in her much-publicized screed that ‘Global Warming’ is all about anti-capitalism and nothing to do with science.

Ottmar Edenhofer, lead author of the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report (2007), summed up the situation quite clearly. Speaking in 2010, he advised: “One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. Instead, climate change policy is about how we redistribute de facto the world’s wealth.”

Head of the EPA Gina McCarthy admitted during a U.S. House hearing that anti-coal CO2 regulations attached to EPA’s so-called “Clean Power Plan” wouldn’t have any measurable impact on global warming. She testified, “We see it as having had enormous benefit in showing sort of domestic leadership as well as garnering support around the country for the agreement we reached in Paris.”

Also mentioned was a quote from former U.S. Senator and chief climate envoy during the Clinton administration, Timothy Wirth, which shows how Democrats unconditionally stick behind climate change to forward its progressive agenda. “We’ve got to ride the global warming issue,” Wirth said. “Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing.”

The late Dr. Stephen Schneider’s heartfelt rationalization for climate-change advocacy involved his stated position that climate scientists must necessarily “offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have” so as to “capture the public’s imagination” by “getting loads of media coverage” as a means to advance the cause.

Maurice Newman, the chairman of Australia’s business advisory council said the UN was using false models showing sustained temperature increases to end democracy and impose authoritarian rule.

“The real agenda is concentrated political authority,” Newman wrote in an opinion piece published in the Australian newspaper. “Global warming is the hook. It’s about a new world order under the control of the UN…. “It is opposed to capitalism and freedom and has made environmental catastrophism a household topic to achieve its objective.”

Today’s folks have heard over and over from such sterling non-scientists as Barack Obama, Al Gore, and John Kerry that the global warming fiction is, in fact, the truth. It’s refreshing that we now have a president who actually speaks the truth, which is: 1) CO2 is not a pollutant and 2) CO2 does not cause global warming.

We can only hope.

SOURCE





Climate Models Are Warming Earth Two Times Faster Than Reality

Climate models show twice as much warming during the 21st Century than what’s actually been observed, according to a new report highlighting the limitations of global climate models, or GCMs.

“So far in the 21st century, the GCMs are warming, on average, about a factor of 2 faster than the observed temperature increase,” Dr. Judith Curry, a former Georgia Tech climate scientist who now runs her own climate forecasting company, wrote in a report for the U.K.-based Global Warming Policy Foundation.

Curry has been one of the foremost critics of climate models, arguing that while they can be useful, there are too many uncertainties and issues to rely on models for public policy decisions.

Curry’s report gives a detailed rundown of why models can be useful for modeling complex climate systems, but also points out that GCMs fail to capture natural variability in the climate.

“The reason for the discrepancy between observations and model simulations in the early 21st century appears to be caused by a combination of inadequate simulations of natural internal variability and oversensitivity of the models to increasing carbon dioxide,” wrote Curry.

Climate models assume carbon dioxide is the control knob for average global temperature and fail to take into account “the patterns and timing of multidecadal ocean oscillations” and “future solar variations and solar indirect effects on climate,” Curry explains.

Models also “neglect of the possibility of volcanic eruptions that are more active than the relatively quiet 20th century” and suffer from an “apparent over-sensitivity to increases in greenhouse gases,” Curry continues.

Global warming skeptics have been pointing out problems with climate models for years, but only recently have scientists taken a hard look at modeling’s actual predictive powers.

A group of scientists admitted in early 2016 that the 15-year “pause” in global warming threw a wrench into climate model predictions, forcing some to go back to the drawing board to see what went wrong.

“There is this mismatch between what the climate models are producing and what the observations are showing,” John Fyfe, Canadian climate modeler, told Nature in 2016. “We can’t ignore it.”

But climate model problems predate the recent warming “pause.” Chip Knappenberger and Patrick Michaels, climate scientists at the libertarian Cato Institute, have long criticized most climate models, which they say have not accurately predicted global temperature rises for the past six decades.

In late 2015, Michaels and Knappenberger published research comparing observed rates of global surface temperature warming since 1950 to predictions made by 108 climate models.

They found the models predicted much higher warming rates than actually occurred from rising carbon dioxide emissions.

Even the recent string of “record warm” years are below what most climate models predicted. A recent El Nino temporarily brought global average temperature in agreement with most climate models, but the globe is expected to cool in the coming years as the tropics cool.

And that’s only surface temperature readings. A similar mismatch exists between satellite-derived temperature readings and model predictions.

Climate scientists John Christy and Roy Spencer manage a prominent satellite-derived temperature data set out of the University of Alabama, Huntsville. Their data showed no warming for about two decades — a streak only broken by the recent El Nino warming event.

SOURCE

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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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Wednesday, February 22, 2017



Hurrah! Trump scrapping NASA climate research division in crackdown on ‘politicized science’

The crooks are going

Donald Trump is poised to eliminate all climate change research conducted by Nasa as part of a crackdown on “politicized science”, his senior adviser on issues relating to the space agency has said.

Nasa’s Earth science division is set to be stripped of funding in favor of exploration of deep space, with the president-elect having set a goal during the campaign to explore the entire solar system by the end of the century. This would mean the elimination of Nasa’s world-renowned research into temperature, ice, clouds and other climate phenomena.

Nasa’s network of satellites provide a wealth of information on climate change, with the Earth science division’s budget set to grow to $2bn next year. By comparison, space exploration has been scaled back somewhat, with a proposed budget of $2.8bn in 2017.

Bob Walker, a senior Trump campaign adviser, said there was no need for Nasa to do what he has previously described as “politically correct environmental monitoring”. “We see Nasa in an exploration role, in deep space research,” Walker told the Guardian. “Earth-centric science is better placed at other agencies where it is their prime mission.

“My guess is that it would be difficult to stop all ongoing Nasa programs but future programs should definitely be placed with other agencies. I believe that climate research is necessary but it has been heavily politicized, which has undermined a lot of the work that researchers have been doing. Mr Trump’s decisions will be based upon solid science, not politicized science.”

SOURCE




Heavy reliance on other countries for "green" Britain's electricity supply

More than two kilometres down a dark, dank tunnel deep inside a Norwegian mountain, the air is thick with dust and the smell of explosives. A pair of red laser beams pierce the blackness, providing guide marks for a drilling machine to bore a computer-programmed pattern of 30 holes into the rock.

“Once the drilling starts it gets really noisy,” Nigel Williams says. “They go four metres into granite. Think of the power needed to do that. They are massive machines.” The resulting holes will be packed with explosives and then detonated. Three such blasts extend the tunnel by ten metres each day.

It forms a crucial part of National Grid’s key project: to build the world’s longest subsea power cable. Like a giant extension lead, the £1.4 billion, 450-mile North Sea Link interconnector will plug Britain into the Norwegian grid, enabling it to import 1.4 gigawatts of electricity, enough to power 750,000 homes. From Blyth in Northumberland, the cable will stretch across the North Sea before winding its way through 60 miles of fjords until the seabed comes to an abrupt halt on the far side of this mountain, 50 miles northeast of Stavanger. The cable will run through the tunnel, now close to completion, and then cross a lake to Kvilldal, home to Norway’s biggest hydroelectric power plant, where it will connect with the grid.

While Britain is facing increasing challenges keeping the lights on as old coal and nuclear plants close and intermittent wind and solar take their place, plants such as Kvilldal mean that Norway’s grid is practically overflowing with cheap and reliable green power.

“From a UK perspective, wind and volatility has picked up and has become a real headache,” Mr Williams, National Grid’s project director for North Sea Link, says. “These interconnectors can provide flexible services to support changes in output very quickly.”

Britain has 4GW of interconnectors, but the government has backed the development of up to a further 9GW. Ofgem, the regulator, offers financial support through a new “cap and floor” system to guarantee domestic developers such as National Grid, which is building the link jointly with Statnett, its Norwegian counterpart, a minimum return.

Critics have questioned whether foreign power imports can be relied upon in a crisis. Even Norway’s usually plentiful hydropower supplies, which mean that its wholesale power prices typically are only half of British levels, can run short and push up prices in a dry year. Thor Anders Nummedal, project director for Statnett, says that any water shortages would hit only in the spring, after the UK’s winter demand peak. In fact, he says, the interconnector will allow Norway to import wind power from Britain when there is surplus. “Then we don’t have to use water and we can store it and use it later,” he says. “Imports from the UK will enable us to avoid price shocks.”

Ensuring that the interconnector is reliable also means going to great lengths to protect it from the kind of damage suffered by one of the UK’s existing interconnectors, which was severed by a ship’s anchor last year. The cable will be laid in 80-mile stretches, reeled off the back of a ship at more than six miles a day. Once each stretch is on the seabed, a robotic machine the size of a tank will crawl along its length at a rate of two metres a minute, blasting water down beneath it with the force of 500 patio jet washers and creating a trench into which the cable can fall.

Work at sea is due to begin from Britain in 2018 and Norway in 2020 — provided that the cable is made in time. Development of new interconnectors and offshore wind farms around Europe mean that there is fierce demand for the specialist cables. About five inches, or 13cm, in diameter, they consist of a copper core wrapped in paper and soaked with oil, then coated in lead, tape, steel and plastic to insulate and protect it. Delays to cable supply, meaning that it cannot be laid in calmer summer weather, represent the biggest risk to the project’s schedule and could increase the cost up to more like £1.8 billion, according to Mr Williams.

If all goes to schedule, the link should start operating in December 2021, in time to make good on Mr Nummedal’s light-hearted promise to “turn on the power and light up the Norwegian Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square”.

That’s assuming that the cable works to begin with. “Only when you plug in and you turn the voltage up at the converter ends, only then will you test the cable,” Mr Williams says. If there is a fault, most likely at the join between two sections, a remotely operated vehicle will be sent down to sever it and pull the ends up to the surface to be linked afresh. Nobody wants that to happen.

“Do it once, do it well,” Mr Williams says. “You never want to see that cable again.”

Progressing by making connections

Interconnectors represent a small but rapidly growing part of National Grid’s business (Emily Gosden writes). The utility giant already co-owns Britain’s existing subsea power cables linked to France and the Netherlands, but there are more in the pipeline. As well as the new North Sea Link to Norway, it is building the Nemo link to Belgium, is preparing to build an interconnector to Denmark and a second to France.

“It’s our growth area,” Jon Butterworth, head of National Grid’s non-regulated business, says. “We are actively looking at more interconnectors.” Indeed, the company has early plans for a link crossing part of the northern Atlantic to Iceland and is understood to be considering second links to the Netherlands and Norway.

The projects offer the potential for higher returns than the Grid’s core domestic power and gas networks. It could earn up to 8 per cent for the North Sea Link, compared with about 4.5 per cent on most of its regulated business, using Ofgem’s post-tax real project return figures.

However, the expansion has fuelled concerns about a potential conflict of interest between National Grid’s role as system operator, advising the government on keeping the lights on, and its commercial interest in developing interconnectors.

SOURCE



Global  warming not happening in China

How often have we heard that extreme weather is a sign of global warming?

In one of the most comprehensive studies on trends in local severe weather patterns to date, an international team of researchers found that the frequency of hail storms, thunderstorms and high wind events has decreased by nearly 50 percent on average throughout China since 1960.

The team analyzed data from the most robust meteorological database known, the Chinese National Meteorology Information Center, a network of 983 weather observatories stationed throughout China's 3.7 million square miles. Meteorologists have been collecting surface weather data through the network since 1951 or earlier, which provided the researchers an unprecedented look at local severe weather occurrences.

"Most of the data published on trends in severe weather has been incomplete or collected for a limited short period," said Fuqing Zhang, professor of meteorology and atmospheric science and director, Center for Advanced Data Assimilation and Predictability Techniques, Penn State. "The record we used is, to the best of our knowledge, the largest, both in time scale and area of land covered."

The team, who report their findings today (Feb. 17) in Scientific Reports, found that the strength of the East Asian Summer Monsoon decreased at a rate strongly correlated to that of severe weather throughout the same time period. The monsoon is an annually recurring, long-term weather phenomenon that brings warm, moist air from the south to China in the summer, and cooler air from the north to China in the winter. A monsoon's strength is measured by calculating the average meridian wind speed in this area.

"We believe that changes in monsoon intensity are affecting severe weather in the area because of the strong correlation we found, but we cannot say the monsoon is the exclusive cause," said Zhang. "A monsoon is one of the major drivers of severe weather because it affects the three necessary 'ingredients' for severe weather, which are wind shear, instability and triggering."

Wind shear is the difference between the wind speed and direction at different altitudes. Because a monsoon brings southerly winds into China, a weaker summer monsoon would decrease the overall low tropospheric wind shear. The weaker monsoons would also bring less warm, moist air from the south—one of the most common sources of instability in the atmosphere. A common triggering mechanism for severe convective weather is lifting by the front, a high temperature gradient across the monsoon, and this would also be reduced in a weaker summer monsoon.

Some studies suggest that climate change may be one of the reasons that the Asian Summer Monsoon weakened. One factor in monsoon formation is the difference between the temperature above land and the temperature above adjacent ocean or sea. A warming climate would affect the difference between these two and, as a result, simulations show that this could continue decreasing the monsoon's strength. However, the team noted that other major changes in the area—such as an increase in industrialization and air pollution in China in the 1980s—might have played a significant role in the region's atmospheric changes and could affect the severe weather.

While a decrease in severe weather might sound beneficial, it may not always be a good thing.

"There are many natural cycles that rely on severe weather and the precipitation it brings," said Qinghong Zhang, professor of atmospheric and oceanic sciences, Peking University, lead author of the study, who conducted this research while on sabbatical at Penn State. "A decrease in storms could potentially lead to an increase in droughts. Also, some theorize that while the frequency of severe weather decreases, their intensity could potentially increase. We cannot say if this is true yet, but it is something we will analyze in the future."

This was the first study in its level of detail because of the amount of data collected by the Chinese National Meteorology Information Center. The study also showed that occurrences of hail remained relatively steady from 1961 through the 1980s before plummeting.

"The frequency of thunderstorms and high winds decreased gradually over the time period we studied, but not hail," said Qinghong Zhang. "This is something we don't fully understand at this point but plan to investigate more."

SOURCE





Global warming: Be fair to both sides

The public is vastly misinformed on the global warming/climate change issue, because of the utter one-sidedness of the media's coverage. I know doom and gloom sells, but whipping up hysteria with headlines about rising seas, melting glaciers and climbing temperatures is irresponsible and dangerous. 1970s headlines threatened a new ice age, 1980s headlines warned us of population growth that would lead to global starvation, and now we are told we'll burn to death because of carbon-dioxide emissions.

To present the debate fairly, first the two protagonists must be identified. They are the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Control and the Nongovernmental Panel on Climate Control. The IPCC is a branch of the United Nations. It is not a scientific panel. Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, its former chairman, explains: "We are an intergovernmental body, and we do what the governments of the world want us to do. If the governments decide we should do things differently and come up with a vastly different set of products, we would be at their beck and call." Another U.N. climate official, Ottmar Edenhofer, stated that the goal of environmental policy is to "redistribute de facto the world's wealth by climate policy."

The NIPCC is a group of nongovernment scientists. According to its website, the NIPCC "seeks to objectively analyze and interpret data and facts without conforming to any specific agenda." The NIPCC is funded by special interests specifically to counter the claims coming from the IPCC. I am not insinuating that either one of these groups is right or wrong, but rather that the media should inform the public of the players.

Second, presenting the debate in an antagonistic manner ignores the fact that there is common ground and scientific agreement between some of the players on the two sides. Both state that the climate has always changed and always will. They agree that there was a "pause" in global warming from 1998 to 2015. It is also agreed that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, the accumulation of which warms the lower atmosphere. And there's consensus that the Industrial Revolution produced a new source of carbon-dioxide emissions. They also agree that a temperature increase of about 0.7 degrees centigrade may (my emphasis) have occurred in the 20th century.

The ongoing debate is fueled by science issues. The most contentious is exactly how much the industrial (read human) carbon-dioxide emissions contribute or will contribute to warming. There is also debate as to whether humans have caused any dangerous warming for the past 50 or so years. And finally there is considerable doubt as to whether the various computer models used by the IPCC can accurately predict the climate 100 years from today.

Use these suggestions as a basis for fair and honest coverage. This is a political debate and should be presented as such. If you have an opinion about global warming, remain flexible, because the science is most certainly not settled.  

SOURCE




Australia: Coal proves its worth while the Left tilts at windmills

[Former Leftist leader] Kevin Rudd breezed into the Sky News studio in Canberra last week to decry the lack of “deep, strong, committed national leadership” since the electorate’s foolish ­decision to turf him out of office.

It was “nuts” to remove the carbon tax, he said. “Where we are now can be summed up in three words: dumb, dumb, dumb.”

Australia’s energy market could be dumber still if Labor wins office and pursues its vanity target of 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030. The plight of South Aus­tralia, the canary in the turbine blades, demonstrates what happens when an economy becomes hostage to unreliable sources of power.

Yet Rudd was unapologetic. Coal? Don’t get him started. “The message for coal, long-term globally, is down and out,” he informed us. We need “a heavy mix of renewables”, which was why he was proud that the government had introduced the renewable ­energy target.

In the real world, the one outside Rudd’s brain, the RET is nothing to be proud of. It is one of the most expensive public policy disasters of the century, market intervention on a massive scale with unfair and unintended con­sequences that will haunt Aus­tralians for decades.

Rudd, determined to tackle the era’s “greatest moral challenge”, upped the target by more than 450 per cent in an uncosted promise before the 2007 election.

It was crazy, as the Productivity Commission politely tried to tell him in a 2008 submission. The target would not increase abatement but would impose extra costs and lead to higher electricity prices, the commission warned.

It would favour existing technologies — namely wind and solar — while holding back new ideas that might ultimately be more ­successful.

Rudd, of course, knew better. Not for the last time, he ignored the Productivity Commission and pushed ahead with his renewable target of 45,000GWh by 2020, of which 41,000GWh would come from large-scale wind and solar.

If the policy was designed to punish Australian consumers, it was a roaring success. Household electricity bills increased by 92 per cent under the Rudd-Gillard governments, six times the level of ­inflation.

Rudd went further, spending $4.15 billion on dubious clean ­energy boondoggles. He put $1.6bn into solar technologies, delivered $465 million to establish the research institute Renewables Australia, gave $480m to the Nat­ional Solar Schools Program to give schools “a head start in tackling climate change and conserving our precious water supplies”. Easy come, easy go; the money tree seemed ripe for picking.

The cost of meeting Rudd’s windmill and solar fetish has been extraordinary. Wind-generated power is roughly three-times more expensive than traditional energy, and large-scale solar even pricier.

It has taken cross-subsidies of $22bn to keep renewables viable, according to a 2014 review for the federal government. The economy-wide cost was put at $29bn.

It amounts to industry welfare on steroids. Corporations that jumped on the clean energy gravy train have benefited from assistance on a far greater scale than that we once lavished on the car industry.

Wind farm operators work in splendid isolation from the risk and uncertainty that trouble ordinary businesses. Their share price is not driven by supply and demand for electricity, but by the funny-money world of large-scale generation certificates.

When the LGC spot price shot up from $52 in July 2015 to $86, the value of Infigen’s stock ­quadrupled.

Coal energy producers, on the other hand, saw their fortunes decline. The Alinta power station closed at Port Augusta in May last year, ground down by operating losses of about $100m.

The result of Labor’s ill-considered RET policy should shame the social justice party into silence. Shareholders in the likes of Infigen have grown rich by squeezing coal operators out of business with all that entails: the loss of 440 jobs at Port Augusta, for example, and the threat the closure presents to jobs in other South Australian industries.

They have grown rich through a scheme that has made the electricity grid more unstable and reduced the reliability of supply.

They have grown rich through a scheme that has more than doubled the cost of running an air­conditioner, a detail that probably won’t trouble Infigen’s executives on the 22nd floor of their five-star energy-rated Pitt Street, Sydney, headquarters but would make life uncomfortable for a pensioner surviving on $437 a week in Adelaide’s northern suburbs.

On paper, the case for abolishing the RET is strong. Deloitte’s estimates the reduction in electricity prices would add $28.8bn to GDP by 2030 and create 50,000 jobs.

The politics of liberalising the energy market would be punishing, however, and all but impossible to negotiate through the Senate.

The status quo — a 23.5 per cent renewable target by 2020 — will require doubling the capacity of wind and solar and will further erode the viability of coal plants. The doubling of energy future ­prices that followed the announcement of the closure of Victoria’s Hazelwood power station is a sign of things to come.

Rudd’s claim that coal is “down and out” will come as news to the Japanese government, which is planning up to 47 coal-fired, high-energy, low-emissions plants burning high-quality Australian black coal.

It would be viable in Australia, too, if energy providers enjoyed a free market. With gas prices high, ultra-supercritical coal generation would fill the demand for base-load power.

Yet the uncertainty of Labor’s greener-than-thou policies — not just a 50 per cent RET but a price on carbon, too — could yet make the end of coal a self-fulfilling prophecy.

SOURCE

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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

*****************************************



Tuesday, February 21, 2017



Strange science

The article below says that global warming cools the temperature in the Pacific and that a cooler Pacific is likely to produce centuries of drought in California.  It appeared just 4 months before the current floods: A very large predictive failure.  

But it was a nutty article anyway.  The Pacific is the world's largest body of water.  Why should global warming cool it?  How can something global leave out the Pacific or even a large part of the Pacific? The authors could have avoided the egg currently residing on their faces if they had questioned their finding that warming causes ocean cooling.  Such an absurd finding should have led them to question whether or not something was wrong with their research methods.  There clearly was.



Prolonged California aridity linked to climate warming and Pacific sea surface temperature

Glen M. MacDonald et al.

Abstract

California has experienced a dry 21st century capped by severe drought from 2012 through 2015 prompting questions about hydroclimatic sensitivity to anthropogenic climate change and implications for the future. We address these questions using a Holocene lake sediment record of hydrologic change from the Sierra Nevada Mountains coupled with marine sediment records from the Pacific. These data provide evidence of a persistent relationship between past climate warming, Pacific sea surface temperature (SST) shifts and centennial to millennial episodes of California aridity. The link is most evident during the thermal-maximum of the mid-Holocene (~8 to 3 ka; ka = 1,000 calendar years before present) and during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) (~1 ka to 0.7 ka). In both cases, climate warming corresponded with cooling of the eastern tropical Pacific despite differences in the factors producing increased radiative forcing. The magnitude of prolonged eastern Pacific cooling was modest, similar to observed La Niña excursions of 1o to 2 °C. Given differences with current radiative forcing it remains uncertain if the Pacific will react in a similar manner in the 21st century, but should it follow apparent past behavior more intense and prolonged aridity in California would result.

SOURCE




CA: Global warming causes droughts, global warming causes floods.  Is there anything it can't do?

Credulous journalists below just parrot what the incompetent scientists say

With California having its most rainy winter in years, residents have relied on emergency spillways and other precautions for the past two weeks.

The night of Feb. 11, the Oroville dam filled with rain and its emergency spillway was used for the first time. The dam’s emergency spillway, however, collapsed. The residents of Oroville and surrounding towns downstream were ordered to evacuate immediately.

CSUN professor of hydrogeology Ali Tabidian said this is one of the major issues with global warming, which is causing such extreme weather. When it comes to floods, Tabidian said, they’re going to be bigger and more frequent.

He also said dams and levees are based on years of data. So engineers do their best to take this information into account when they’re designing precautions. However, the type of rain and climate happening now is not in the data from the past because of global warming.

“A lot of flood control projects, these are based on old data,” Tabidian said.

Not only is global warming an issue, but urbanization is as well. According to Tabidian, with urbanization there is an increase of asphalt and a decrease in soil. Therefore, when it rains, there’s not as much soil to absorb it. All the extra water will flow into lakes and rivers.

“With so many homes and shopping centers, it’s unbelievable and going to generate more runoff and bigger floods,” Tabidian said.

SOURCE





High efficiency, low emission (HELE) coal-fired power

Deploying high efficiency, low emission (HELE) coal-fired power plants is a key first step along a pathway to near-zero emissions from coal with carbon capture, use and storage (CCUS). HELE technologies are commercially available now and, if deployed, can reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the entire power sector by around 20%.

What does improving efficiency mean?

Improving efficiency increases the amount of energy that can be extracted from a single unit of coal. A one percentage point improvement in the efficiency of a conventional pulverised coal combustion plant results in a 2-3% reduction in CO2 emissions.

What can be achieved?

Moving the current average global efficiency rate of coal-fired power plants from 33% to 40% by deploying more advanced off-the-shelf technology could cut two gigatonnes of CO2 emissions now, while allowing affordable energy for economic development and poverty reduction. Two gigatonnes of CO2 is equivalent to:

* India's annual CO2 emissions

* Running the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme for 53 years at its current rate, or

* Running the Kyoto Protocol three times over

In addition to significant benefits from reduced CO2 emissions, these modern high efficiency plants have significantly reduced emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulphur dioxide (SO2 ) and particulate matter (PM). Beyond the climate benefits of reduced CO2 emissions, reduction in these pollutants is of additional importance at the local and regional level to address air quality and related health concerns.

Supercritical & Ultrasupercritical Technology

New pulverised coal combustion systems – utilising supercritical and ultra-supercritical technology – operate at increasingly higher temperatures and pressures and therefore achieve higher efficiencies than conventional PCC units and significant CO2 reductions. Supercritical steam cycle technology has been used for decades and is becoming the system of choice for new commercial coal-fired plants in many countries.

Research and development is under way for ultra-supercritical units operating at even higher efficiencies, potentially up to around 50%. The introduction of ultra-supercritical technology has been driven over recent years in countries such as Denmark, Germany and Japan, in order to achieve improved plant efficiencies and reduce fuel costs.

SOURCE




Canada: Murray Energy CEO claims global warming is a hoax, says 4,000 scientists tell him so

Murray Energy Chairman and CEO Robert Murray on Friday claimed global warming is a hoax and repeated a debunked claim that the phenomenon cannot exist because the Earth's surface is cooling.

Murray appeared on CNBC's "Squawk Box" to discuss Republicans' rollback of an Obama-era rule that would have restricted coal mining near waterways. President Donald Trump signed the measure on Thursday in front of Murray and a group of Murray Energy workers.

Murray Energy is the country's largest coal miner. Many of its mines are in Appalachia, a region that would suffer some of the biggest impacts of the rule. Murray also successfully sued to delay implementation of the Clean Power Plan, which would regulate planet-warming carbon emissions from power plants.

Asked about the economic analysis behind President Barack Obama's energy regulations, Murray said, "There's no scientific analysis either. I have 4,000 scientists that tell me global warming is a hoax. The Earth has cooled for 20 years."

It was not immediately clear who the 4,000 scientists Murray referenced are.

Asked for clarification, a spokesperson for Murray Energy sent links to the Manhattan Declaration on Climate Change, which says "human-caused climate change is not a global crisis," and the Global Warming Petition Project, a list of science degree holders who don't think humans cause climate change.

Murray's claim that there is no scientific analysis behind climate change is not true.

A landmark 2013 study assessed 4,000 peer-reviewed papers by 10,000 climate scientists that gave an opinion on the cause of climate change. It showed 97 percent of the authors attributed climate change to manmade causes.

The above is a false claim.  The "landmark" Cook study in fact showed that two thirds of climate scientists took no position on global warming.  Read the abstract for yourself here

SOURCE





Australian Leftist leader fails to specify cost of his  renewables policy when asked four times

Bill Shorten has declined to be specific about the cost of Labor’s goal to have 50% of Australia’s electricity generated from renewable sources by 2030.

In an early morning radio interview on Wednesday, Shorten was asked four times about the cost to consumers of executing such a transition, but the Labor leader deflected, pointing to the costs of not acting.

With the Coalition intent on making energy policy a point of sharp partisan difference, Malcolm Turnbull pounced on the interview, telling reporters in Canberra the Labor leader had admitted “he had no idea what his reckless renewable energy target would cost, or what its consequences would be.”

“He confirmed precisely the criticism that we’ve made about Mr Shorten, that he is literally clueless on this subject, mindless, just like South Australia has been.”

Labor’s 50% by 2030 policy is not a RET, it is an “aspiration”. Labor’s election policy says the 50% national goal would work in concert with state-based RET schemes, which the prime minister has blasted consistently since a storm plunged South Australia into a statewide blackout last year.

During an interview with the ABC Shorten was pressed repeatedly about the practical consequences of the shift – the costs to consumers of executing such a significant transition in Australia’s energy mix.

Shorten attempted to explain the broad rationale for increasing renewables in Australia’s energy mix, and he said Labor believed there was “a range of levers which assist, from having an emissions intensive scheme and the energy intensity scheme in the energy industry, having a market trading scheme and an emissions trading scheme [and] looking at the rate of land clearing.”

“Our answer is very, very straightforward. We think the cost of not acting is far greater.”

“We don’t think we could sustain the cost as the Liberals are saying, of building new coal-fired power generation on the scale which Mr Turnbull is saying and we don’t think that, from insurance to drought to extreme weather events, that we can simply go business as usual.”

Australian National University research associate Hugh Saddler in July 2015 estimated Labor’s policy would increase wholesale market prices by four cents per kWh above present levels in every state market except South Australia.

By signing on to the Paris climate agreement, the Turnbull government has committed Australia to reducing emissions by 26-28% on 2005 levels by 2030. Meeting those targets will impose costs on consumers.

The government has been advised by numerous experts that its Direct Action climate policy will not allow Australia to meet the Paris targets, and adopting an emissions intensity scheme, a form of carbon trading, would allow Australia to reduce emissions from energy at the least cost to households and businesses.

The government has thus far rejected that advice.

SOURCE

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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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Monday, February 20, 2017



The war on coal is over with Scott Pruitt in at EPA, sets stage for 2018 Senate elections

The Senate confirmed Scott Pruitt on Friday to run the Environmental Protection Agency.  Vote was 52 to 46



Ever since his time as Oklahoma Attorney General, Pruitt has fought the EPA at every turn throughout the country. Pruitt joined 11 other Republican Attorneys General in 2013 to fight against the sue and settle lawsuits of the EPA which provided the agency with wide latitude over the enforcement of environmental law, where environmental groups sue the EPA and to avoid further litigation, the parties settle the suit and the EPA is given permission to address the issue with newly expanded powers.

There will also be an opportunity for the EPA to reconsider the 2009 Carbon Endangerment Finding, defining carbon dioxide as a harmful pollutant under the Clean Air Act, which has been used to justify the continual implementation of regulations that expand the agency’s power and wage a war on coal via the new and existing power plant rules.

The EPA has successfully forced states to regulate the coal industry as an extension of the Clean Air Act, and given itself far more oversight than ever intended.

This assault on coal has placed burdens on the economy that Pruitt has consistently seen as both unattainable and unnecessary, arguing in 2014 in response to a new EPA regulation on emission controls that “The EPA can’t force utility companies to actually incorporate emission control measures unless they’re achievable through technology. And here, there really isn’t any demonstrated technology that will see a reduction of 30 percent… this is coerced conservation.”

Pruitt’s constant defense against this coercion by the agency built by the Obama Administration allowed all 52 Senate Republicans to back him Thursday morning as his confirmation process moved forward. However, Republicans were not alone in their favor for Pruitt.

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin and North Dakota Senator Heidi Heitkamp both voted in support of Scott Pruitt as well, and this vote could be what saves them in 2018 as Democrats defend a whopping 25 Senate seats. Even Democrats are starting to learn that the war on coal is hurting the jobs of their constituents and polluting the economies of their states.

The Washington Post reported in Dec. 2016 that West Virginians were “euphoric” and “thrilled” by Trump’s win noting that “Before the price of coal collapsed, before the number of working miners in the state fell to a 100-year low of 15,000, miners could make $60,000, even $75,000 a year, without a high school education. Walmart money doesn’t come close.”

In states with a strong mining industry, a senator’s vote for Pruitt is a vote to return economic possibility and the American dream to thousands of workers.

Even Heidi Heitkamp has been consistently willing to oppose her Democratic establishment when it comes to assisting her constituents in getting back to work. In 2015 Heitkamp argued “EPA’s over-reaching policy won’t work for North Dakota. We now have EPA in the driver’s seat dictating how we generate and transmit electricity, and that’s a dangerous road to go down.”

Constituents in states like North Dakota and West Virginia were integral in developing a support base for Trump that Democrats willfully ignored. Heitkamp and Manchin have proved that they are listening to their people, other Democrats would be wise to do the same.

The rust belt was integral to Trump’s election in part because of their reliance on coal; for states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Indiana, three of which Trump won, Trump was the easy decision to get the people back to work and make the economy stable once again. Yet all four of these states have Democrats in office, all up in 2018 as well, who voted against Pruitt: Sherrod Brown, Bob Casey, Mark Warner and Joe Donnelly.

In a statement, Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning blasted these senators as “those politicians who voted against the Pruitt nomination told the workers in their states they prefer San Francisco radical environmentalist campaign cash over the votes and livelihoods of their constituents.”

Clearly, Heitkamp and Manchin are focused on creating jobs for their constituents and retaining their position in 2018, and proof was their vote for Pruitt. Brown, Casey, Warner and Donnelly, not so much.

President Obama led the war on coal, and now Scott Pruitt is about to end it as EPA Administrator. The work he has done in Oklahoma sets the stage for ending EPA overreach and in doing so, he can force other Democrats in the Senate to actually start listening to their constituents — or else face the music in 2018.

SOURCE





Demon coal

Coal is a gift that we have in abundance.  The vast reserves of coal guarantee the United States energy for hundreds of years.  Coal is efficient.  No fuel, other than uranium, is cheaper.  Coal burns clean in modern plants.  Strip-mining coal in the modern way improves the landscape.  According to the Energy Information Administration, the U.S. demonstrated coal reserve base is 477 billion 2,000-pound tons, enough for more than 500 years at current consumption rates.

In the eyes of the diminishing crowd of believers in catastrophic global warming, coal is evil, a demon.  Why?  Because it is mostly carbon, and when coal is burned, carbon dioxide (CO2) is created.  CO2 is supposed to create a disaster.  As the predicted disaster (global warming) fails to materialize, a new disaster (extreme weather) is invented. The disasters that never materialize are blamed on CO2 and indirectly on coal.

Apocalyptic ideology needs scapegoats.  Coal and CO2 serve well.  According to the Sierra Club, demon coal will destroy our world and poison our children.  If the Sierra Club only offered mountain meadows and wildflowers, it would be pretty boring and wouldn't raise $100 million every year.  Demons and conspiracies are the stuff that raises big money.

The CO2 released by burning coal is wonderful stuff.  Plants breathe CO2, and if there is more CO2 in the air, the plants breathe easy, grow faster, and need less water.  Greenhouse operators put CO2 generators in their greenhouses because more CO2 helps plants thrive.  Worldwide agriculture is going strong, partly because the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has increased from about 0.03% to 0.04%.

The idea that "science" proves that CO2 is a demon is most plausible to people with limited exposure to down and dirty science.  Down and dirty science is at its dirtiest when it is seeking money or protecting its money.  Former president Dwight Eisenhower, in his 1961 farewell address, anticipated global warming:

The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present - and is gravely to be regarded.

Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.

Eisenhower's fears have materialized. A not so elite alliance of climate scientists and federal bureaucrats has captured public policy, demonizing CO2 and predicting a global disaster.  Around 2010, the disaster narrative shifted from "global warming" to "extreme weather."  That should have closed down the demonization of CO2.  It's not fair to keep changing disasters.  But they had to change their disaster, because global warming stopped beginning in 1998.  By 2010, the revision of the predicted disaster was well underway.

The failure of global warming to continue after 1998 is powerful evidence that the theories predicting disastrous global warming from CO2 are simply wrong and that the amount of warming that might happen is likely negligible or beneficial.  Global environmental data suggests that global warming is a scare story whose time has passed. The failure of the globe to warm for the last two decades is validated by satellite temperature measurements, the most reliable form.

In 2015, an attempt was made to erase the global warming pause by re-analyzing ocean temperatures.  That attempt has been discredited by angry whistleblowers.

Psychologically, extreme weather is a good choice for a disaster. It seems that weather is becoming more extreme because the memory of previous extreme weather episodes fades with time.  Scientifically, extreme weather clashes with global warming.  According to global warming theory, the poles are supposed to warm more than the tropics, decreasing the temperature difference between the tropics and the poles.  But weather is driven by that temperature difference.  Less temperature difference due to global warming should result in less energy available to drive weather.  But extreme weather is an elastic concept.  If the weather is nice and uneventful for long periods, that is extreme, too.  In the U.S., it is clear that extreme weather is decreasing.

The promoters of dubious science like to add conspiracy theories to discredit objections.  Anyone who disagrees with them is part of the conspiracy.  In the case of global warming skeptics, they are supposedly part of a conspiracy promoted by the fossil fuel companies.

The Harvard professor Naomi Oreskes deserves the title of global warming conspiracy queen.  According to Dr. Oreskes, the oil companies, in league with certain right-wing scientists, belonging to the military-industrial complex, are plotting to spread disinformation critical of the absolutely clear and true science of global warming that has been devised by very sincere and nice scientists.  She even made a movie about it.

Dr. Oreskes should get in touch with the many inventors of high-mileage carburetors whose inventions are allegedly being suppressed by the oil companies.  Also interesting are the people who claim that General Motors bought up and closed down all the trolley car lines so people would have to buy cars and buses.

The organization that hates coal more than any other is the Sierra Club.  Every scrap of literature produced by the Sierra Club on the subject of coal includes a picture of a backlit smokestack.  By photographing a smokestack emitting harmless condensing steam with the sun behind the smokestack, the steam can be made to look like black smoke.

It is rare to see black smoke coming from a smokestack.  Polluting smokestacks disappeared many decades ago.  Below is a picture of the John W. Turk generating plant in Arkansas.  Nothing visible comes out of the smokestack even while it is burning 300 tons of coal per hour.  Noxious substances in the flue gas have been scrubbed down to a low level by pollution control equipment.

In a modern plant that burns coal to generate electricity, the principal polluting substances - sulfur, particulates, nitrogen oxides, and mercury - are removed from the flue gas and reduced to low levels before the gas enters the smokestack. The ash left over after the coal is burned is buried in a safe landfill.  In spite of being overregulated by the government, and demonized by the Sierra Club, modern coal plants are highly reliable and generate electricity cleanly and cheaply.  The carbon dioxide emitted is harmless and increases agricultural productivity.

By using coal to generate electricity, natural gas, a premium fuel, can be reserved for low-duty cycle, peaking power plants, for powering transportation, for domestic heating, or to be exported to customers in Asia.  Natural gas should not be squandered by using it to generate base load electricity when vast coal supplies are available.

But, if you listen to the Sierra Club, coal is a dirty and outdated fuel.  Rather than suggesting natural gas or nuclear, the normal alternatives to coal, the Sierra Club wants us to use windmills to generate electricity.  The Sierra Club is especially interested in offshore wind:

Offshore wind produces no air or water pollution as it generates electricity. Coal plants, by contrast, pollute our air with soot and smog that cause or worsen respiratory illnesses, heart disease, and asthma. Asthma from coal plant pollution is estimated to cause3,000,000 lost work days and 554,000 asthma attacks each year, 26,000 of which are severe enough to require an emergency room visit. Coal plants also dirty our water with toxic mercury that can cause birth defects, neurological disorders, and developmental delays in children.

The medical claims that the Sierra Club attributes to modern coal use are false or at least astronomically exaggerated.  Note the fake, nearly exact numbers for asthma attacks and emergency room visits.

The problem with wind power is that it stops when the wind stops.  You have to have alternative plants to take up the load. With wind power, you don't replace the fossil fuel infrastructure.  It keeps on working, as a backup, part-time and at great cost.

SOURCE





If THIS isn’t evidence of SABOTAGE against Trump, I don’t know what it is

By Allen West

I was driving down I-45 from Dallas to Houston Friday morning I heard this very disturbing news.

As reported by The Week, “In a last-ditch effort to block the confirmation of President Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency director nominee Scott Pruitt, EPA employees have resorted to calling their senators.

(Ahead of) Pruitt’s confirmation vote… employees at the agency (were) growing increasingly worried about the possibility of a new boss who has vowed to “get rid of” the EPA and who sued the EPA “at least 14 times” while he was Oklahoma’s attorney general, The New York Times reported.

“It seems like Trump and Pruitt want a complete reversal of what EPA has done. I don’t know if there’s any other agency that’s been so reviled,” said EPA lawyer Nicole Cantello. “So it’s in our interests to do this.”

The bold and blatant effort is out of the ordinary, and perhaps unprecedented. “I’ve been here for 30 years, and I’ve never called my senator about a nominee before,” an EPA employee in North Carolina told The New York Times. Former EPA employee Judith Enck said the rebellion reveals how desperate EPA employees are to block Pruitt. “EPA staff are pretty careful. They’re risk-averse,” Enck said. “If people are saying and doing things like this, it’s because they’re really concerned.”
Former Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt was indeed confirmed as the new Director of the EPA on Friday, obviously to the chagrin of the employees of the agency he’s about to lead.
What type of bizarro world are we living in where government employees of an agency are now calling to block the nominations of their future boss? Haven’t these folks EVER heard of the Hatch Act (which prevents government employees from lobbying)?

This is purely political activity and it should not and must not be tolerated. However, this abhorrent behavior has been playing out quite often in these early days of the Trump administration. There’ve been reported instances of similar actions in the Department of Defense and State, and we all know someone is leaking classified information to the liberal progressive media in order to undermine — no, sabotage — the peaceful transition of government.

These are government employees whose salaries are paid for by the American taxpayer. They should not be using their positions as political platforms, which is what the Hatch Act seeks to prevent. This just goes to further lend credibility to this belief that there’s some sort of residual rear guard, Obama shadow government left in place to create chaos for the incoming Trump administration.

Can you just imagine if, in February 2009, there were government agency employees calling their Senators, demanding they block Obama cabinet and agency appointees? The liberal progressive media would be going apoplectic! Instead they’re busy frothing over President Trump’s impromptu press conference from Thursday. Yes, it is the media’s fault they’re losing credibility and are hardly trusted. A story such as this should be receiving immense coverage, but instead, these rogue employees are being heralded as heroes and courageous by the leftists.

It’s time some very serious actions take place, and the government unions are not going to like what I say. These folks cannot see themselves any longer as being impervious to suffering any consequences to their actions. Not just this, but also the failures of government inefficiency — a reason why there are so many government hired contractors.

These government employees must be fired.

They cannot operate in this realm of feeling “untouchable” any longer. Their paychecks are signed by us, the American taxpayer. They don’t work for any political party, cause, or in advancement of an ideology. They are part of the swamp, the bureaucratic administrative state, and there is no place more indicative of that than the IRS and the EPA. This agency in the past eight years was used as an ideological agenda weapon of mass destruction.

SOURCE





US Congress launches a probe into climate data that duped world leaders over global warming

Revelations by the Mail on Sunday about how world leaders were misled over global warming by the main source of climate data have triggered a probe by the US Congress.

Republican Lamar Smith, who chairs the influential House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space and Technology, announced the inquiry last week in a letter to Benjamin Friedman, acting chief of the organisation at the heart of the MoS disclosures, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

He renewed demands, first made in 2015, for all internal NOAA documents and communications between staff behind a controversial scientific paper, which made a huge impact on the Paris Agreement on climate change of that year, signed by figures including David Cameron and Barack Obama.

The paper – dubbed the ‘Pausebuster’ – claimed that contrary to what scientists had been saying for several years, there was no ‘pause’ or ‘slowdown’ in the rate of global warming in the early 21st Century, and that in fact it had been taking place even faster than before.

The ‘pause’ had been seized on by climate sceptics, because throughout the period, carbon dioxide emissions continued to rise.

This month, this newspaper revealed evidence from a whistleblower, Dr John Bates, who until the end of 2016 was one of two NOAA ‘principal scientists’ working on climate change, showing that the paper based its claims on an ‘unverified’ and experimental dataset measuring land temperatures, and on a then newly issued sea-temperature dataset that is now to be withdrawn and replaced because it exaggerates both the scale and speed of warming.

The ‘Pausebuster’ paper’s claims were trumpeted around the world when it was published by the journal Science in June 2015, six months before the UN Paris climate-change conference. Its assertions were highlighted in scientific briefings to officials who hammered out the Agreement – which commits the developed world to sweeping greenhouse-gas emissions cuts and pledges an additional £80 billion every year in ‘climate-related’ aid to poor nations.

In his letter to NOAA, Congressman Smith expresses frustration that previous demands for documents about the Pausebuster were not met, although his committee took the unusual step of issuing a legal subpoena. NOAA’s decision to withhold the documents was, he wrote, ‘without any justification in law’.

As for the revelations by this newspaper, Mr Smith said they ‘raise additional questions as to whether the science at NOAA is objective and free from political interference’. NOAA has said it intends to bring in ‘independent outside parties’ to investigate the Pausebuster and the flawed datasets.

Last week Peter Stott, head of climate monitoring at the UK Met Office, admitted that notwithstanding the Pausebuster, it was clear ‘the slowdown hasn’t gone away’.

The ‘pause’ is clearly visible in the Met Office’s ‘HadCRUT 4’ climate dataset, calculated independently of NOAA.

Since record highs caused last year by an ‘el Nino’ sea-warming event in the Pacific, HadCRUT 4 has fallen by more than half a degree Celsius, and its value for the world average temperature in January 2017 was about the same as January 1998.

SOURCE




Polar bear numbers still on the rise

Polar bear populations are still growing despite global warming, according to new research.

The new population estimates from the 2016 Scientific Working Group are somewhere between 22,633 to 32,257 bears, which is a net increase from the 2015 number of 22,000 to 31,000. The current population numbers are a sharp increase from 2005’s, which stated only 20,000 to 25,000 bears remained — those numbers were a major increase from estimates that only 8,000 to 10,000 bears remained in the late 1960s.

Until the new study, bear subpopulations in the Baffin Bay and Kane Basin (KB) were thought to be in decline due to over-hunting and global warming. The new report indicates this is not the case.

Scientists are increasingly realizing that polar bears are much more resilient to changing levels of sea ice than environmentalists previously believed, and numerous healthy populations are thriving.

Predictions that bears would die due to a lack of sea ice have continuously not come to pass. Recent rumors about polar bear extinction underscore another time when scientists discovered the creatures possess higher resilience to changing levels of sea ice than previously believed. Another new study by Canadian scientists found “no evidence” polar bears are currently threatened by global warming.

“We see reason for concern, but find no reliable evidence to support the contention that polar bears are currently experiencing a climate crisis,” Canadian scientists wrote in their study, published in the journal Ecology and Evolution.

Polar bears became an icon for environmentalists who claimed that melting Arctic sea ice could kill thousands of bears. Former Vice President Al Gore heavily promoted this viewpoint by featuring polar bears swimming for their lives and drowning in his 2006 film on global warming.

Fears about global warming’s impact on polar bears even spurred the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to say that the bear was “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act in 2008. Polar bears were the first species to be listed over possibly being harmed in the future by global warming.

Scientists, however, have increasingly been questioning alarmists as there are way more polar bears alive today than 40 years ago.

In fact, polar bears have likely survived past ice-free periods in the Arctic. There is no evidence of large scale marine life extinctions in the Arctic in the past 1.5 million years, despite the Arctic going through prolonged periods with no summer ice cover.

SOURCE

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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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