Friday, December 19, 2014



More unsettled science:  It's squirrels and beavers who are causing  global warming

Strange that there hasn't been any for a long time, though

Rodents such as squirrels and beavers are contributing far more to global warming than previously thought, forcing climate scientists to alter the models they use to chart how the world is warming up.

Arctic ground squirrels churn up and warm soil in the Tundra, releasing carbon dioxide, while methane released by beavers contributes 200 times more methane than they did 100 years ago, according to scientists from the American Geophysical Union.

Faeces and urine produced by rodents are speeding up the release of carbon from the permafrost, the vast store of greenhouses spanning the Arctic Circle, researchers found.

Dr Sue Natali, from the AGU, said "We know wildlife impacts vegetation, and we know vegetation impacts thaw and soil carbon.

"It certainly has a bigger impact than we've considered and it's something we will be considering more and more going into the future."

Dr Natali added: "Carbon has been accumulating in permafrost for tens of thousands of years. The temperature is very cold, the soils are saturated, so that when plants and animals die, rather than decompose, the carbon has been slowly, slowly building up.

"Right now the carbon storage is about 1,500 billion tonnes. To put that in perspective, that's about twice as much as is contained in the atmosphere."

As part of the Polaris Project, Dr Natali, from Woods Hole Research Center in Massachusetts, and Nigel Golden, from the University of Wisconsin travelled to Siberia to study the underground burrows of arctic squirrels.

The team found that this activity meant that the burrows were warmer than the surrounding ground, while nitrogen that the squirrels were adding to the ground through their waste was also having an impact.

Beavers, meanwhile, have dammed up more than 16,200 square miles of ponds. A separate paper, published in the journal AMBIO, found that beavers are responsible for releasing around 881,000 tons of methane into the atmosphere each year, much more than cud-chewing animals such as deer or antelope.

It means scientists will in the future have to alter their theories around anthropogenic, or man-made, climate change to take account of 'rodentopogenic' influences, scientists told Mail Online.

SOURCE





Leftist hack Dana Milbank finally deigns to listen to some skeptics

He wrote the following in the Washington Post:

For years, the fossil-fuel industries have been telling us that global warming is a hoax based on junk science.

But now these industries are floating an intriguing new argument: They’re admitting that human use of coal, oil and gas is causing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to rise — but they’re saying this is a good thing. We need more CO2 in our lives, not less.

“CO2 is basically plant food, and the more CO2 in the environment the better plants do,” proclaimed Roger Bezdek, a consultant to energy companies, at an event hosted Monday by the United States Energy Association, an industry trade group.

The session, at the Ronald Reagan Building in downtown Washington, was devoted to demonstrating that “CO2 benefits clearly outweigh any hypothesized costs.” And though Bezdek is an economist, not a scientist, he played one on Monday — showing a PowerPoint presentation that documented a tree growing faster when exposed to more carbon dioxide.

“CO2 increases over the past several decades have increased global greening by about 11 percent,” the consultant said. Higher carbon levels in the atmosphere will boost worldwide agricultural productivity by $10 trillion over the next 35 years, he added.

And this doesn’t include the indirect benefits of good-ol’ CO2. “Over the past two centuries, global life expectancy has more than doubled, population has increased eightfold, incomes have increased 11-fold. At the same time, CO2 concentrations increased from 320 ppm to about 400 ppm,” Bezdek said, using the abbreviation for parts per million. The benefits of CO2, he said, exceed its costs by ratios of between 100-1 and 900-1. A chart helpfully illustrated this “Close Link Between CO2 & GDP.”

I’m neither a scientist nor an economist, but I’ve heard that correlation is not the same as causation. I pointed out to Bezdek that increasing energy use fueled the economic growth, and CO2 was just a byproduct. So wouldn’t it make more sense to use cleaner energy?

“Fossil fuels will continue to provide 75, 80, 85 percent of the world’s energy for at least the next four or five decades,” he asserted. And even if we could reduce CO2, we shouldn’t. “If these benefits are real — and there have been five decades and thousands of studies and major conferences that pretty much have proven they are — then maybe we shouldn’t be too eager to get rid of CO2 in the atmosphere.”

This was some creative thinking, and it took a page from the gun lobby, which argues that the way to curb firearm violence is for more people to be armed.

Another questioner at the event asked Bezdek if he had considered ocean acidification, the release of methane gases, pollution and other side effects of rising CO2. This did not trouble him. “As you develop and you become wealthier,” he explained, “you have the wealth to clean up the mess.” He went on to point out that “35,000 people every year in the United States die in automobile accidents, but the solution is not to ban automobiles. You try to make them safer.”

And the solution to climate change is not to ban energy but to make it cleaner.

The U.S. Energy Association membership comes from various sectors but includes big petroleum companies and utilities. Bezdek seemed to have a special place in his heart for coal, “the major world energy source of the past, present and future . . . lifting hundreds of millions of people out of poverty.”

The presentation began as a standard recitation of the climate-change denial position, that “there’s been no global warming for almost two decades” and that forecasts are “based on flawed science.”

But then Bezdek pivoted into a robust defense of carbon dioxide’s benefits. “These days, CO2 seems to be blamed for everything,” he lamented, but the much-maligned gas is what’s keeping the world from an economic collapse so deep “you’d look upon North Korea as an economic consumer’s paradise, literally.” He mocked European efforts to use renewable fuels (“You can’t check your e-mail today because the wind isn’t blowing”) and he said that in the United States, “inability to pay utility bills is the second-leading cause of homelessness.”

Clearly, more CO2 would make us all breathe easier. “Controlled studies indicated that twice today’s levels would be very good for agriculture,” he said, “and below certain levels . . . plants wouldn’t grow and we wouldn’t live.”

Luckily, we need not worry about that, because Bezdek is confident fossil fuels will continue to prevail. In “2070 will we have a new and different energy source?” he asked. “Maybe, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.”

Definitely don’t hold your breath, sir. We need all the CO2 we can get.

SOURCE

Craig Idso comments:

"It is a shame how these people operate.  We all know they are the real deniers, denying observations, the scientific method and truth as they cling to their apocalyptic dogma.  We need more stories and visuals of the benefits of CO2 so the world can see for themselves in simple terms the stupidity of people like Dana Milbank who suggest fossil fuels/rising CO2 concentrations do not provide biospheric and human benefits.  Let's all promote the positives of CO2 and fossil fuels more, especially since it riles them so much!"

Will Happer sent the following note to Roger Bezdek

"Dear Roger,

I am delighted that the Washington Post has finally run a story on the benefits of CO2. Congratulations.  For years Craig Idso and his father Sherwood, and others have been pointing out that the benefits of CO2 far outweigh any harm, but they have been unable to get coverage in the Washington  Post, the New York Times, etc.  You have.  And by the standards of the global warming cult, you were treated very sympathetically.

Remember comment by Shopenhauer:  "All truth passes through three states, first it is ridiculed, second it is violently opposed,  and thirdly it is accepted as self-evident." The Washington Post article is part of stage one.  You should get ready for stage two, which will include death threats.  We are facing a really vicious and powerful cult that will stop at nothing to protect its influence.  Sooner or later we will reach stage three."





Even Before Long Winter Begins, Energy Bills Send Shivers in New England

Courtesy of the Greenies

SALEM, N.H. — John York, who owns a small printing business here, nearly fell out of his chair the other day when he opened his electric bill.

For October, he had paid $376. For November, with virtually no change in his volume of work and without having turned up the thermostat in his two-room shop, his bill came to $788, a staggering increase of 110 percent. “This is insane,” he said, shaking his head. “We can’t go on like this.”

For months, utility companies across New England have been warning customers to expect sharp price increases, for which the companies blame the continuing shortage of pipeline capacity to bring natural gas to the region.

Now that the higher bills are starting to arrive, many stunned customers are finding the sticker shock much worse than they imagined. Mr. York said he would have to reduce his hours, avoid hiring any new employees, cut other expenses and ultimately pass the cost on to his customers.

Like turning back the clocks and putting on snow tires, bracing for high energy bills has become an annual rite of the season in New England. Because the region’s six states — Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont — have an integrated electrical grid, they all share the misery.

These latest increases are salt in the wound. New England already pays the highest electricity rates of any region in the 48 contiguous states because it has no fossil fuels of its own and has to import all of its oil, gas and coal. In September, residential customers in New England paid an average retail price of 17.67 cents per kilowatt-hour; the national average was 12.94 cents.

Beyond that, the increases confound common sense, given that global oil prices have dropped to their lowest levels in years, and natural gas is cheap and plentiful from the vast underground shale reserves in nearby Pennsylvania.

But the benefits are not being felt here. Connecticut’s rate of 19.74 cents per kilowatt-hour for September was the highest in the continental United States and twice that of energy-rich states like West Virginia and Louisiana. The lowest rate, 8.95 cents, was in Washington State, where the Columbia River is the nation’s largest producer of hydropower.

For the coming winter, National Grid, the largest utility in Massachusetts, expects prices to rise to 24.24 cents, a record high. The average customer will pay $121.20 a month, a 37 percent increase from $88.25 last winter.

The utilities argue that they are hamstrung unless they can increase the pipeline capacity for natural gas, which powers more than half of New England. That would not only lower costs for consumers, they say, but also create thousands of construction jobs and millions of dollars in tax revenue.

The region has five pipeline systems now. Seven new projects have been proposed. But several of them — including a major gas pipeline through western Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire, and a transmission line in New Hampshire carrying hydropower from Quebec — have stalled because of ferocious opposition.

The concerns go beyond fears about blighting the countryside and losing property to eminent domain. Environmentalists say it makes no sense to perpetuate the region’s dependence on fossil fuels while it is trying to mitigate the effects of climate change, and many do not want to support the gas-extraction process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, that has made the cheap gas from Pennsylvania available.

Consumers have been left in the middle, as baffled as they are angry. Utilities across the region are holding workshops and town meetings to try to address their concerns and offer tips on energy conservation. About 100 people showed up this month for a meeting at Salem High School here that included a presentation by Liberty Utilities, the largest natural gas distributor in New Hampshire.

John Shore, a company spokesman, told the audience that in times of peak demand, the available natural gas went first to residential and business customers. Some power plants that normally rely on gas then turn to more expensive fuels like oil, although not all plants have the ability to switch fuels. In some cases, electric generating plants go offline, and more expensive generators are used to make up the capacity.

A year ago, the governors of the six New England states agreed to pursue a coordinated regional strategy, including more pipelines and at least one major transmission line for hydropower. The plan called for electricity customers in all six states to subsidize the projects, on the theory that they would make up that money in lower utility bills.

But in August, the Massachusetts Legislature rejected the plan, saying in part that cheap energy would flood the market and thwart attempts to advance wind and solar projects. That halted the whole effort.

SOURCE






Dangerously rising sea levels in Florida?

Florida’s vulnerability to the effects of climate change doesn’t seem at first blush to be a Canadian issue.

But every year, some 3.5 million Canadians travel to the sunshine state. What’s more, about half a million Canadians own property in Florida, much of it at risk from rising sea levels.

A lot of that property, particularly if it’s situated along one of the coveted stretches of Miami’s fabled beaches, could well be worthless and literally underwater in a few decades, says Harold Wanless, the chair of the department of Geological Sciences at the University of Miami.

His word for the future of Miami and much south Florida? Doomed.

The “monster” in climate change, as Wanless sees it, is a warming ocean. Sea levels will rise because water expands as it gets warmer, and oceans are taking up vast amounts of heat produced by global warming.

Warmer water is also driving the accelerated melting of the vast ice sheets covering Greenland and Antarctica.

Wanless says a two-metre rise in sea level by 2100 is likely, but says it’s also plausible it could be as much as five metres by the end of the century, and it will continue rising for centuries after that.

And the facts?

Sea levels around Florida have been rising at a rate of 2.01mm/year since 1897, but this rate has been slowing down in recent years, rising by just 1.3mm/year in the last 30 years.

Meanwhile, 50-year trends show that the fastest rate of rise occurred between 1910 and 1960.

Finally, it should be pointed out that, according to Church & White, the Florida coast is sinking at the rate of 0.27mm/year, thus accounting for a fifth of the recent rate of rise.

Two metres by the end of the century? And he is supposed to be a scientist?

More HERE  (See the original for links, graphics etc.)





New York state to ban fracking over health fears

New York state is looking to ban fracking, citing unresolved health issues and dubious economic benefits of the widely used gas-drilling technique.

Environmental Commissioner Joe Martens said he is recommending a ban. Governor Andrew Cuomo said he is deferring to Mr Martens and Acting Health Commissioner Howard Zucker in making the decision.

"I cannot support high-volume hydraulic fracturing in the great state of New York," Mr Zucker said, adding that the "cumulative concerns" about fracking "give me reason to pause".

Mr Zucker and Mr Martens summarised the findings of their environmental and health reviews. They concluded that shale gas development using high-volume hydraulic fracturing carried unacceptable risks that haven't been sufficiently studied.

Mr Martens says the Department of Environmental Conservation will put out a final environmental impact statement early next year, and after that he'll issue an order prohibiting fracking.

Fracking, which involves injecting water into rock to release gas, has sparked controversy in the UK and US, and New York has had a ban on shale gas development since the environmental review began in 2008.

"Mounting scientific evidence points to serious health risks from fracking operations," said Kate Sinding, deputy director of the New York programme at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

"With this announcement, the governor has listened, ... demonstrating both courage and national leadership on this critical issue."

SOURCE




McConnell: 'First Item' in Next Senate Will Be Keystone XL Pipeline

"We'll be starting next year with a job-creating bill that enjoys significant bipartisan support," Sen. Mitch McConnell, the next majority leader, told reporters on Tuesday, the last day of the current Congress.

"The first item up in the new Senate will be the Keystone XL Pipeline, the Hoeven bill. It will be open for amendment. We'll hope that senators on both sides will offer energy-related amendments, but there'll be no effort to try to micromanage the amendment process. And we'll move forward and hopefully be able to pass a very important, job-creating bill early in the session."

McConnell noted that permission to bring a new segment of the Keystone Pipeline across the U.S.-Canada border has been delayed for six years.

"The notion that building another pipeline is somehow threatening to the environment is belied by the fact that we already have 19 pipelines, I'm told, by (Sen.) Lisa Murkowski, that cross either the Mexican border or the Canadian border. Multiple studies, over and over again, showing no measurable harm to the environment. People want jobs. And this project will create well-paying, high wage jobs for our people.

"It certainly does enjoy a lot of bipartisan support. You saw that on the vote that was held a couple of weeks ago. And we're optimistic we can pass it and put it on the president's desk."

McConnell said the Senate will take up a bill introduced by Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.).

The Hoeven legislation authorizes TransCanada to construct and operate the Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta, Canada, to the U.S. Gulf Coast, transporting an additional 830,000 barrels of oil a day to U.S. refineries.

The State Department's final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), released in January, concluded that construction of the Keystone XL pipeline would have no significant impact on the environment. Hoeven said if Congress passes legislation authorizing construction of the project, a presidential permit would no longer be needed.

Last month, a Senate attempt to advance Keystone legislation fell one vote short of the 60 votes needed. Shortly before that mid-November vote, White House spokesman Josh Earnest was asked if President Obama would veto the bill.

Earnest said the president considers the State Department, not Congress, to be "the proper venue for reaching this determination."

"So I think we'll probably wait and see what happens in the Senate, and see whether or not the president -- this comes to the president's desk before we sort of make decisions about the next steps."

With a new Republican majority in both the Senate and the House, the Keystone bill is likely to pass in 2015. But it would need 67 votes in the Senate to override a veto.

With that in mind, Hoeven has said he may roll the pipeline bill into a "broader energy package or appropriations bill that the president will not want to veto."

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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Thursday, December 18, 2014


Some woolly Green/Left thinking in CA

What would it affect if Californian entities "divested" from coal shares?  Very little.  Not a kilo less of coal would be produced and used.  All that would happened is a slight depression of the value of shares in coal companies -- making them cheaper for investors and particularly attractive to investors looking for dividends.

And after California aiming to subject gasoline sellers to the extra cost burden of cap & trade laws, Steyer blames oil companies for putting up gas prices!  Does he seriously not see the connection between increasing  taxes on something and prices of that something going up?


With Republicans threatening to shove climate change to the back seat as they take control of the U.S. Senate, state officials including Gov. Jerry Brown huddled with one of the nation’s leading Democratic donors Monday to talk up ways to keep it on California’s agenda — including legislation that could send a shiver through the coal industry.

The state Senate’s top leader said at an Oakland forum organized by billionaire environmental activist Tom Steyer that he’s planning to introduce a measure next year to require the state’s public-employee pension funds to sell their coal-related investments.

“Climate change is the top priority of the California state Senate,” said Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles. He said his legislation would require that the California Public Employees Retirement System, which manages public employees’ pensions and health benefits, and the California State Teachers Retirement System divest millions of dollars in coal-related investments.

“Coal is a dirty fossil fuel, and we generate very little electricity in California from coal,” de León said. “And I think our values should shift in California.”

But not oil and gas

De León, who just returned from an international climate-change summit in Peru, said he hadn’t worked out the specifics of his bill but that it would be limited to coal investments. He said it would not extend to all fossil-fuel holdings such as those in oil and gas production.

“We’re working out all the (divestment) details,” he said. “We’re talking about a way that’s smart and intelligent, not a way that hurts investment strategies.”

Climate-change activists have been pushing large investors to shed their holdings in coal, a major contributor to greenhouse gases. CalPERS, the nation’s largest public pension fund with $300 billion in investments, would be the environmental movement’s biggest prize should de León be able to push his legislation into law.

The biggest name at the California Climate Leadership forum was Brown, who said the state would face strong opposition from “very powerful people” as it continues its aggressive approach to climate change.

Those efforts include bringing gasoline sellers and distributors under the state’s landmark cap-and-trade climate law as of Jan. 1, requiring them to purchase credits to emit greenhouse gas pollutants. It’s been targeted as a “hidden gas tax” by the Western States Petroleum Association, which is lobbying to delay its implementation.

On the national front, Republicans who take control of the Senate next month have targeted several Obama administration initiatives aimed at reducing global warming. In particular, incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky has vowed to strip funding from the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal to restrict carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.

“We can do things in California,” Brown said, “but if others don’t follow, it will be futile.”

Fighting Darth Vaders

For his part, the 57-year-old Steyer depicted environmentalists as the good guys in a “Star Wars”-like battle for the planet’s health — with oil companies cast as a collection of Darth Vaders who are fully capable of raising gas prices “in order to punish us.”

SOURCE





Green on the Outside, Red in the Middle

Bolivian President Evo Morales is a socialist, and, unlike American Democrats, doesn’t need to hide his true colors. Speaking at the United Nations' Lima Climate Change Conference – the one with the biggest carbon footprint yet – Morales said, “The deep causes of global warming are not being dealt with here. The origin of global warming lies in capitalism. If we could end capitalism then we would have a solution.”

We’ll admit his honesty is somewhat refreshing, if disconcerting all the same. Morales continued, “After 30 years of negotiations, global warming is still going on. So many people and countries do not act responsibly. They are only thinking about profits, luxuries and markets. They are not thinking about life, but only of money and how to accumulate more capital.”

That capital has lifted millions out of poverty, lengthened life spans and provided technology and comforts. But socialists like him would rather spread the poverty and explain it away as saving the planet.

SOURCE





More unsettled science

Your all-electric car may not be so green: Researchers say electricity generated by coal plants can cause MORE pollution than simply using gasoline

People who own all-electric cars where coal generates the power may think they are helping the environment. But a new study finds their vehicles actually make the air dirtier, worsening global warming.

The controversial study raises major questions over the future of 'green' cars.

The authors looked at liquid biofuels, diesel, compressed natural gas, and electricity from a range of conventional and renewable sources.

Their analysis included not only the pollution from vehicles, but also emissions generated during production of the fuels or electricity that power them.

With ethanol, for example, air pollution is released from tractors on farms, from soils after fertilizers are applied, and to supply the energy for fermenting and distilling corn into ethanol.

'Unfortunately, when a wire is connected to an electric vehicle at one end and a coal-fired power plant at the other end, the environmental consequences are worse than driving a normal gasoline-powered car,' said Ken Caldeira of the Carnegie Institution for Science, who wasn't part of the study but praised it.

Driving vehicles that use electricity from renewable energy instead of gasoline could reduce the resulting deaths due to air pollution by 70 percent, it concluded.

Ethanol isn't so green, either, the researchers claimed.

'It's kind of hard to beat gasoline' for public and environmental health, said study co-author Julian Marshall, an engineering professor at the University of Minnesota.

'A lot of the technologies that we think of as being clean ... are not better than gasoline.'

The key is where the source of the electricity all-electric cars.

If it comes from coal, the electric cars produce 3.6 times more soot and smog deaths than gas, because of the pollution made in generating the electricity, according to the study that is published Monday by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

They also are significantly worse at heat-trapping carbon dioxide that worsens global warming, it found.

The study examines environmental costs for cars' entire life cycle, including where power comes from and the environmental effects of building batteries.

The states with the highest percentage of electricity coming from coal, according to the Department of Energy, are West Virginia, Wyoming, Ohio, North Dakota, and Illinois.

Still, there's something to be said for the idea of helping foster a cleaner technology that will be better once it is connected to a cleaner grid, said study co-author Jason Hill, another University of Minnesota engineering professor.

The study finds all-electric vehicles cause 86 percent more deaths from air pollution than do cars powered by regular gasoline.

Hybrids and diesel engines are cleaner than gas, causing fewer air pollution deaths and spewing less heat-trapping gas.

But ethanol isn't, with 80 percent more air pollution mortality, according to the study.

'If we're using ethanol for environmental benefits, for air quality and climate change, we're going down the wrong path,' Hill said.

SOURCE





Peru Plans to Charge Greenpeace Activists for Damage to Nazca Lines

President Ollanta Humala of Peru criticized the environmental group Greenpeace on Saturday for not respecting his country’s archaeological heritage as authorities said they intended to seek criminal charges against several activists who damaged the fragile desert around the Nazca Lines.

Greenpeace stirred up a storm of controversy in Peru last week after a group of about 12 activists on Monday entered a protected area around the famous lines to place a sign promoting renewable energy on the ground. The sign was meant to attract the attention of world leaders who were in Lima for a United Nations summit meeting on climate change.

Officials said that the activists walking over the fragile desert ground left marks that cannot be removed. The Nazca Lines were created over 1,000 years ago, and include enormous figures of birds, mammals and geometric shapes etched into the earth.

Mr. Humala said Greenpeace had “simply come to trample on” the country’s heritage. “We must simply spread the word, alert the world,” Mr. Humala said. “Watch out at the Taj Mahal, watch out at the pyramids in Egypt, because we all face the threat that Greenpeace could attack any of humanity’s historical heritage.”

He said that he hoped that prosecutors and the courts would take action against the activists.

In a strange twist, a judge on Saturday rejected a request by prosecutors to detain the activists or keep them from leaving the country, saying that prosecutors had failed to provide their addresses. But the request by prosecutors appeared to be too late anyway, since Greenpeace had said a day earlier that the activists had already left Peru. Luis Jaime Castillo, the vice minister for cultural heritage, said in a telephone interview that the authorities still intended to pursue criminal charges against the activists.

He said that he had met with several Greenpeace members in Lima on Thursday. The group included one of the activists who took part in the incident at the Nazca Lines. He identified the activist as Mauro Fernández, who appeared in a video taken during the stunt and posted later online.

Mr. Castillo said that he asked for the names of the other activists who participated in the stunt, and that Mr. Fernández told him that he could not remember their names.

That appeared to fly in the face of pledges by Greenpeace to cooperate with the authorities. Mr. Castillo said officials suspected that some members of the group had visited the site on a previous occasion to prepare for the stunt.

Greenpeace has issued a statement apologizing for the incident. A Greenpeace spokesman could not be reached for comment on Saturday.

The ground around the lines consists of white sand topped by a layer of darker rocks. When the activists entered the area they disturbed the top layer, exposing the sand below.

SOURCE





No fast track authority, roll back EPA regs instead

“[R]ecent trade deals, like the World Trade Organization trade deal, had no labor or environmental standards.”

That was the AFL-CIO, objecting to fast track trade authority for the Obama administration to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership and other trade agreements expected to come up in Congress next year.

Labor groups object to free trade agreements because other nations refuse to adopt the same high regulatory standards on the environment and labor costs that the U.S. has — leaving American workers at a disadvantage.

AFL-CIO actually has an interesting point — but for the opposite reason.

Nobody expects any foreign country to sign a trade agreement requiring it to adopt the same onerous environmental and labor restrictions we have. Why would they? It willfully puts themselves at a competitive disadvantage globally, tantamount to an economic suicide pact.

In a similar vein, nobody should expect the U.S. to agree to new trade deals while burdensome Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations remain in place.

Because of these regulatory imbalances, the U.S. economy has an artificially higher cost of doing business compared to countries like Vietnam or Malaysia.

If President Barack Obama wants these trade agreements, Republican majorities in the House and Senate next year should not give him carte blanche via fast track.

Instead, there needs to be a consensus about how to make U.S. competitive globally again. Necessarily, that must include a look at the EPA’s 2009 carbon endangerment finding, which ruled that carbon dioxide, a biological gas necessary for the very existence of life, is a “harmful pollutant” under the terms of the Clean Air Act.

This has opened up the door for additional regulations, including the regional haze rule, carbon restrictions on new and existing coal power plants, the new ozone rule,  and the “National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants” that restricts mercury emissions from plants.

Sue-and-settle arrangements the agency enters with organizations are a problem, too. This is where a group sues demanding that the EPA enforce the law in a new, expanded way and the agency enters into a consent decree with the party, which is signed by a judge — leaving the agency with new powers under the Clean Air and Water Acts.

These rules all make it more expensive to do business here, hurting our position globally.

What, those items aren’t on the table? Then, why is there a push for new trade deals that will favor foreign, lower cost producers over American workers? The AFL-CIO is right. Under the existing regulatory framework, this will not be a good deal for the U.S. economy.

Without significant efforts to roll back the regulatory, administrative state in the U.S., these trade deals should not even be in the conversation. Let alone fast track authority, which establishes a process that allows no amendments and limits debate in the Senate.

Why would Republicans in Congress agree to a process that surrenders their constitutional prerogative to use trade agreements as leverage to achieve other changes to U.S. regulatory policy that might get our economy moving again? It makes no sense. What’s in it for the American people?

SOURCE





Australia Federal government still trying to cut back on "renewable" energy target

ENVIRONMENT Minister Greg Hunt will meet rogue senator Jacqui Lambie in Hobart today as he begins courting the crossbench over the renewable energy target.

Mr Hunt is ramping up talks with the crossbench senators while Labor refuses to re-engage in negotiations. The opposition acknowledges the scheme needs bipartisan support, but has said it will not negotiate unless the government shifts on its “cut of 40 per cent to the RET”.

Senator Lambie, who will drive from Burnie to Hobart to meet Mr Hunt, said she was “encouraged” by a letter from the minister yesterday.

In the letter, obtained by The Australian, Mr Hunt says he appreciates “the pressures faced by businesses around the country, including in Tasmania” and looks “forward to constructive discussions with the opposition”.

A spokeswoman for Mr Hunt said he was travelling to Tasmania “for a range of meetings relating to his portfolio”. The government was “hopeful” Labor would return to the table and was “willing to hear the suggestions and proposals from the crossbench and will negotiate with the crossbench should Labor refuse to re-engage”.

Senator Lambie urged the government and opposition to restart RET talks, saying renewable energy providers “deserve some certainty”.

Liberal Democrat senator David Leyonhjelm, meanwhile, said he was “confident” at least six of the crossbench senators supported his controversial plan to bring existing hydro into the target. Senator Leyonhjelm, who met with Mr Hunt last week, said the minister was also “interested”. The Australian could only confirm Family First senator Bob Day and independent senator John Madigan as supportive.

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.  

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Wednesday, December 17, 2014



Weather Records Keep Falling: Cold, Snow and Ice

Record setting cold and snow, not global warming, became the norm in November 2014. According to Ice Age Now: Four Thousand eight hundred fifty six locations in the U.S. set daily record low-high temperatures in November and another 4,121 saw record lows at least one day in November. For the month as a whole, 94 locations set a new monthly record low and 1435 locations set an average record low-high temperature for the month as a whole. Indeed, for the year-to-date, nearly 28,000 locations saw record lows during 2014, and another 19,500, locations set record low-daily-highs.

The Weather Channel reported cities across the U.S. experiencing record daily low temperatures for November, including: Casper, Wyoming: -27 (Nov. 12) and -26 (Nov. 13); Redmond, Oregon: 17 (Nov. 15) and -19 (Nov. 16) each was colder than previous record of -14 (Nov. 15, 1955); Joplin, Missouri: 6 (Nov. 18) bested

previous record of 7 (Nov. 29, 1976) Chicago great lakes frozen

And some cities had record low November streaks: Dallas/Ft. Worth: Six straight days of highs of 45 degrees or colder (Nov. 12-17); and Chicago: 180 straight hours below freezing (late on Nov. 11 until late morning Nov. 19)

The record cold brought with it record breaking ice and snow for many locations in the U.S. For instance, ice brought the earliest end to navigation on the Upper Mississippi River near the Twin Cities according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Blairsville, Georgia received its earliest snow on record on Nov. 1; 0.5 to 2 inches. The previous earliest snow was Nov. 10, 1968 and St. Cloud, Minnesota, received its record heaviest November calendar day snow (13.2 inches on Nov. 10). Gile, Wisconsin got hit with 50.1 inches of snow over a four-day period from Nov. 10-14. This awaits certification as a Wisconsin state snowstorm record.

Areas along the great lakes were especially hard hit by snow with Buffalo Niagara International Airport reporting 88 inches of snow (over 7 feet) from Nov. 17-21. Cities chalking up their snowiest Novembers on record in 2014 include: Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan: 65.4 inches (old record was 46.8 inches in 1989); Rhinelander, Wisconsin: 32.4 inches (old record was 21.5 inches in 1957) and Bangor, Maine: 25.9 inches (old record was 24.6 inches in 1962)

For the U.S. as a whole, Rutgers University Global Snow Lab reports, North America snow cover reached a record extent for mid-November (15.35 million square kilometers), crushing the old record from 1985 by over 2 million square kilometers.

SOURCE





How Obama and his environmental base are planning to eradicate the oil and gas industry

By Ron Arnold

Why does the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulatory war against hydraulic fracturing look like the Natural Resources Defense Council’s 2007 agenda for eliminating domestic oil and natural gas development?

Because it is.

The NRDC’s unjustifiable access to such anti-fracking regulatory power—and the diversion of $8.4 million in taxpayer dollars to its coffers—is highlighted in an October report from the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee minority staff titled, “Setting the Record Straight: Hydraulic Fracturing and America’s Energy Revolution.”

The 111-page committee report opens by citing the enormously positive impacts of America’s oil and natural gas renaissance, which has:

Created and sustained millions of jobs and revitalized our manufacturing sector;

Provided greater energy security and geopolitical strength while reducing our trade deficit;

Lowered domestic energy prices both in our homes and at the gasoline pump.

But the emphasis is on those who would obliterate that renaissance. The message to the public is a warning: President Obama is coordinating with far-left environmental activists such as the aggressive NRDC and the Sierra Club, along with their millionaire board members, their Hollywood celebrity boosters and their “philanthropic” funders, such as the rabidly anti-fracking Park Foundation, to wage an all-out assault to shut down domestic production of American oil and natural gas.

The report notes that “the price of energy is no object to them; they can afford to pay their energy bills at virtually any price.” They can dump hundreds of millions of dollars into a coordinated campaign against affordable energy, decrease the standard of living for middle-class America and devastate the poor without a qualm.

Specifically, NRDC and other groups are “initiating legal challenges to force regulatory action with sue-and-settle arrangements”—the Sierra Club has received more than $19 million and the NRDC $252,004 in EPA-friendly settlements.

An anti-fracking agenda

The most insidious attack is “blurring the scientific literature with spurious studies.”

The foremost example is a 2011 Cornell University report by two biologists and an engineer who “falsely concluded that the life-cycle emissions from natural gas development emit more greenhouse gases than coal,” which was touted by The New York Times as “settled science” useful to silence defenders of fracking. But it was, in fact, science made for hire.

Lead author Robert W. Howarth “was approached by the Park Foundation in 2010 and asked to write an academic article that would make a case that shale gas was a dangerous, polluting fuel. That same year, the Park Foundation gave Cornell University $135,000 for Howarth’s study,” the report said.

Howarth’s “outdated and manipulated data” were so wrong that his study was refuted by his own Cornell colleagues, state regulators, some environmental groups, and even Obama’s White House.

The Park Foundation’s IRS Form 990PF reports from recent years reveal anti-fracking grants totaling more than $3 million to media outlets, including the American Prospect, Earth Talk, Grist, Mother Jones, The Nation, and Yes! Magazine, along with activist groups including Earthworks, Food and Water Watch, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, Media Matters for America, and a network of about 50 others.

“This strategically organized alliance,” says the report, “has gone to great lengths to misconstrue facts, falsify science, and manufacture risks in order to vilify hydraulic fracturing” while ignoring the numerous failed “green” stimulus projects, including Solyndra.

Government regulation

The committee report was particularly concerned about Obama’s rhetoric that masks his intent, citing remarks that he gave to Northwestern University in October. According to the report, Obama bragged that “our 100-year supply of natural gas is a big factor in drawing jobs back to our shores. Many are in manufacturing, which produce the quintessential middle-class job.”

But at the same time, the report said, “over one dozen federal agencies [are] attempting to justify the federal usurpation of states’ rights to regulate hydraulic fracturing.”

Since 1997, EPA regulation of oil and natural gas extraction grew by more than 145%, and 13 federal agencies are trying to regulate fracking out of existence.

The overall picture of the President’s allies is one of heirs, investorsm, and entrepreneurs who became vastly rich in the capitalist system and thus envision themselves as the best directors of everybody else’s life. They became a new ruling class, crony capitalists out to mold the public destiny by destroying all competing visions, using power purchased from politicians, activists, and media shills.

The committee report connects some crony capitalist dots: John Bryson was a co-founder of NRDC in 1970 and later became the chairman and CEO of Edison International, “which obtained exclusive power purchase agreements for four solar projects that received [Department of Energy loans].”

In May 2011, Bryson was appointed to be Obama’s Secretary of Commerce and resigned in 2012 for health reasons. NRDC has numerous doorways to the corridors of power.

Conservatives puzzle over the socialist direction of Big Green’s crony capitalists. Anti-fracking activist Bill McKibben’s 350.org bluntly positioned itself as socialist when director Naomi Klein published her 2014 book, This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate, which sets the anti-fracking, anti-fossil fuel task as, “shredding free market capitalism.” Does her gang mean to shred America’s private enterprise by nationalization?

Crony capitalism

Why bother? If your crony capitalist money can buy the government regulations you want and reroute the federal treasury into your anti-fossil fuel agenda, you get to keep your taxpayer-fed crony capitalism and anybody who survives gets the socialist shreds.

We all owe a debt of thanks to Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana, top Republican on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, for having the courage and diligence to spearhead such investigations as this fracking report documents.

Looking beyond the waning days of the lame-duck session, he told The Daily Signal, “With a Republican majority in the Senate, committee reports—which are based on honest research—will have a more significant presence in terms of creating awareness and setting policy.

“These reports are crucial to understanding how aggressive the EPA and the Obama Administration are in broadening the scope of their authority to issue regulations that affect small businesses and individual families across the country. Plus, they could lead to oversight hearings and perhaps legislative reforms.”

SOURCE





Harmful Consequences of EU Climate Policy

The European Union’s (EU) unilateral efforts to tackle climate change have been a disaster for the economy and the region’s people.

In 2002, the EU approved the Kyoto Protocol and committed to cutting its collective greenhouse gas emissions to 8 percent below 1990 levels by 2008–12. As a result of the restrictive and prescriptive energy policies imposed to meet the target, today the economies of most EU member states are stagnating or in decline. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned in late November the crisis-ridden EU poses a major threat to the world’s economy.

Europe’s climate strategy was based on two key assumptions: first, global warming was an urgent threat needing to be addressed immediately regardless of the costs; second, the world was running out of fossil fuels, so as oil and gas became ever more expensive, renewable energy would become competitive. Neither assumption proved correct.

Europe’s assumption about the urgency of the global warming problem has run up against the now-18-year-long pause in global temperature rises. That pause was not predicted by climate models and at the very least indicates either a misunderstanding of the factors affecting temperature or a consistent overestimation of climate sensitivity.

In addition, while Europe adopted legally binding emission reductions and domestic policies to meet them, the world did not follow suit.

EU countries have substantially reduced carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions domestically, but only at the expense of the region’s economic viability. Europe’s energy-intensive and heavy industries moved abroad to locations with no CO2 emission limits and less expensive energy and labor costs. Those countries are now growing much faster than the EU.

EU member states spent about $882 billion on renewable energy projects between 2005 and 2013. In Germany alone, the green energy transition could cost more than $1 trillion by 2030 if the country’s climate targets and renewable energy goals are not modified.

Energy prices have risen sharply in Europe, where electricity price are now more than double those of the United States. In 2012 alone, lower gas and electricity prices in the United States relative to Europe meant estimated savings of close to $130 billion for U.S. manufacturing.

Last year, Antonio Tajani, the EU’s outgoing industry commissioner, warned Europe’s unilateral climate policies were pushing electricity costs to uncompetitive levels: “We face a systemic industrial massacre. We need a new energy policy. We have to stop pretending, because we can’t sacrifice Europe’s industry for climate goals that are not realistic, and are not being enforced worldwide.”

The costs of Europe’s climate policies have sparked the editors of The Washington Post to acknowledge Europe “has become a green-energy basket case. Instead of a model for the world to emulate, Europe has become a model of what not to do.”

Recognizing the seriousness of this problem, the EU has responded in its latest climate policy agreement by making its terms conditional on a binding international climate treaty. On October 23, EU leaders agreed to a conditional CO2 reduction target of 40 percent by 2030 ‒ provided there is a legally binding UN climate treaty. A special “flexibility clause” was added to the final text, allowing the council to reassess its conditional target after the UN summit.

There is no more “go-at-it-alone” or “Europe-leads” European plan. If the U.S., China, and others don’t adopt binding limits, Europe, learning from its previous climate policies, is prepared to look towards its best industrial interest first for a change.

SOURCE






Still more politicized pseudo-science?

The neonics and honeybees saga takes interesting, potentially fraudulent turn

Paul Driessen

Widening efforts to blame neonicotinoid pesticides for honeybee “colony collapse disorder” and other “beepocalypse” problems have taken a fascinating turn.

Insisting that scientific evidence shows a clear link between neonics and honeybee population declines, EU anti-insecticide campaigners persuaded the European Union to impose a two-year ban on using the chemicals. Farm organizations and the Union’s Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Department unsuccessfully opposed the ban, arguing that evidence for a link is not persuasive, and actual field studies in Canada and elsewhere have found little risk to bees from the pesticides.

Then this year’s canola (rapeseed) crop suffered serious losses of 30-50 percent, due to rampaging flea beetles. Over 44,000 acres (18,000 hectares) were declared a total loss. Euro farmers blamed the ban.

Now it appears that the campaign against these newer, safer pesticides – and the scientific papers that supposedly justify the ban – were all part of a rigged, carefully orchestrated environmentalist strategy.

A recently leaked memorandum, dated June 14, 2010, summarizes a discussion earlier that month among four European scientists who wanted to block neonic use. The memo says the four agreed to find prominent authors who could write scientific papers and coordinate their publication in respected journals, so as to “obtain the necessary policy change to have these pesticides banned.”

“If we are successful in getting these two papers published,” the memo continues, “there will be enormous impact, and a campaign led by WWF etc could be launched right away. It will be much harder for politicians to ignore a research paper and a policy forum paper” in a major scientific journal. Initial papers would demonstrate that neonics adversely affect bees, other insects, birds and other species; they would be written by a carefully selected primary author and a team of scientists from around the world. Additional papers would be posted online to support these documents – and a separate paper would simultaneously call for a ban on the sale and use of neonicotinoids.

(The WWF is the activist group World Wildlife Fund or World Wide Fund for Nature.)

One meeting attendee was Piet Wit, chairman of the ecosystems management commission of the environmentalist organization International Union for Conservation of Nature. Another was Maarten Bijleveld van Lexmond, who became chairman of the IUCN’s Task Force on Systemic Pesticides, which was inaugurated in March 2011, just after the European Union agreed to finance the Task Force to the tune of €431,337 ($540,000). Vouching for the Task Force as an “independent and unbiased” scientific “advisory” group was the same Dr. Maarten Bijleveld, who is also a founding member of the WWF’s Netherlands branch and an executive officer of the IUCN’s environmental committee.

Further underscoring the “independent” nature of these organizations, the EU awarded the IUCN €24,014,125 ($30,000,000) between 2007 and 2013. Moreover, IUCN task force membership is by invitation only – making it easier to implement the Systemic Pesticides Task Force’s stated purpose: to “bring together the scientific evidence needed to underpin action on neonicotinoid pesticides.”

The entire operation is odorously reminiscent of ClimateGate orchestration of alarmist research and banning of studies questioning “dangerous manmade climate change” assertions, and the Environmental Protection Agency’s 1972 DDT ban, regarding which then-EPA Administrator William Ruckelshaus later admitted that he had not attended a single minute of his own task force’s lengthy hearings or read a single page of its findings, which concluded that the insecticide was not dangerous to humans or most wildlife.

The IUCN/WWF campaign also recalls the equally well coordinated effort by Fenton Communications, CBS “60 Minutes” and the Natural Resources Defense Council to ban Alar (a chemical used to keep apples ripening longer on trees), in a way that would channel millions of dollars to the NRDC. It reminds me of former Environmental Defense Fund senior scientist Charles Wurster’s assertion that, “If the environmentalists win on DDT, they will achieve a level of authority they never had before.”

Never mind that the Alar scam sent many family apple orchards into bankruptcy – or that millions of African and Asian parents and children have died from malaria because radical greens have made DDT largely unavailable even for disease control. For them, humanitarian concerns rarely enter the discussion.

As science writer Hank Campbell observes, all these campaigns reflect proven strategies “to manipulate science to achieve a political goal.” They follow the Saul Alinsky/Big Green script summarized by Madeleine Cosman: Select and vilify a target. Devise a “scientific study” that predicts a public health disaster. Release it to the media, before legitimate scientists can analyze and criticize it. Generate emotional headlines and public reactions. Develop a government “solution,” and intimidate legislatures or government regulators to impose it. Coerce manufacturers to stop making and selling the product.

Environmental pressure groups have repeatedly and successfully employed these steps.

In a recent speech, Harvard School of Public Health Professor Chensheng Lu claimed that his “Harvard Study” clearly demonstrated that neonics “are highly likely to be responsible for triggering Colony Collapse Disorder.” However, pesticide expert and professional pest exterminator Rich Kozlovich says the vast majority of scientists who study bees for a living vigorously disagree. They cite multiple problems, including the fact that small bee populations were fed “astronomical” levels of insecticide-laced corn syrup, and the colonies examined for Lu’s paper did not even exhibit CCD symptoms.

President Obama has nevertheless relied heavily on all this pseudo-science, to support his June 2014 memorandum instructing relevant U.S. agencies “to develop a plan for protecting pollinators such as honey bees …in response to mounting concerns about [their] dwindling populations on American crops.” The “serious” problem, Mr. Obama insists, “requires immediate attention.”

He is playing his role in the Big Green script but, as my previous articles have noted (here, here and here), nothing in honest, actual science supports his call for yet another Executive Branch end-run around the Legislative Branch and a proper vetting of what we do know about neonics and honeybee problems.

Neonics are vital for numerous crops: canola, soybeans, wheat, winter squash, citrus groves and others.

Derived from a synthetic form of nicotine and often applied to seeds, “neonicotinoids” are incorporated into plants to defend them against pests. This allows growers to be much more targeted in killing crop-threatening insects: only those that actually feed on the plants are affected. This approach (or spraying) also means growers can successfully grow crops with far fewer large-scale insecticide applications, and dramatically reduce reliance on more toxic pesticides that do harm wildlife, including bees. Real-world field studies have shown that bees collecting pollen from plants treated with neonics are not harmed.

Other research has identified serious problems that truly are afflicting bees in Canada, the United States, Europe and elsewhere. Varroa mites carry at least 19 bee viruses and diseases – and parasitic phorid flies, Nosema intestinal fungi and the tobacco ringspot virus also cause significant colony losses. Beekeepers have accidentally killed entire hives, while trying to address such problems.

Colony Collapse Disorder has shown up from time to time for centuries. A hundred years ago it was called the “disappearing disease.” It now seems to be ebbing, and bee and beehive numbers are climbing.

We need to let real science do its job, and stop jumping to conclusions or short-circuiting the process with politicized papers, anti-neonic campaigns and presidential memorandums. We need answers, not scapegoats. Otherwise, bee mortality problems are likely to spread, go untreated and get even worse, while neonic bans cause widespread crop failures and huge financial losses for farmers.

Via email





Australia: Greenies harassing banks over carbon

ANZ Bank's lending to big carbon emitters is set to come into focus at this week's annual meeting of shareholders, after other banks have boosted their disclosure of climate-change risks.

Investors will on Thursday vote on a proposal to change the constitution to force ANZ to publish the amount of greenhouse gas emissions the company is financing via loans and investments.

It comes as banks globally face growing pressure to consider the financial risks they may face from lending to companies with large carbon footprints.

Proxy advisers are recommending shareholders vote against the resolution, which was also put to CBA investors and rejected by a large margin.

Nonetheless, ANZ's rivals have also taken steps to disclose more information about their carbon exposure.

NAB, which also has its annual general meeting on Thursday, was facing the same resolution, from the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility, but it was withdrawn after the bank agreed to publish more detail on its exposure to climate-change risks in 2015.

CBA also agreed to provide more detail on how much of its loan book is exposed to fossil fuels. At its annual general meeting last month, 3.2 per cent of shareholders voted in favour of the resolution.

In a note to investors, CGI Glass Lewis says ANZ could face some risk through its financed emissions but it may not be practical or even possible to collect all the information required by the resolution. It is advising shareholders to vote against the proposal.

"Given the trend in increased regulation and a heightened sense of awareness among some regulators concerning ensuring the mitigation of the effects of climate change, it is likely that part of the company's loan book could be affected," the note said.

"However, we are not convinced that adoption of this proposal is in the company or its shareholders' best interests at this time."

The lobby group behind the proposal argues that of the big four banks, ANZ is the most exposed to climate-change risks  because of its role as a big lender to the resources sector.

The debate is occurring amid a growing focus on banks' exposure to borrowers who would be affected by climate change policies.

The Bank of England this month reportedly commenced an inquiry into the risk of a "carbon bubble" – a financial shock caused by efforts to mitigate climate change.

Westpac did not face the resolution because ACCR research has found it was the least carbon-exposed to climate risks of the big four. All the same, a significant share of the questions put to chairman Lindsay Maxsted at the bank's AGM on Friday focused on how the bank was responding to climate change in its lending decisions.

Aside from carbon, ANZ investors will also have a non-binding vote on chief executive Mike Smith's remuneration, which rose 3.7 per cent to $10.7 million.

NAB cut the pay of its its former boss Cameron Clyne by more than $1 million to $6 million after disappointing financial results for the bank.

SOURCE





100 reasons why climate change is natural

HERE are the 100 reasons, released in a dossier issued by the European Foundation, why climate change is natural and not man-made:

1) There is “no real scientific proof” that the current warming is caused by the rise of greenhouse gases from man’s activity.

2) Man-made carbon dioxide emissions throughout human history constitute less than 0.00022 percent of the total naturally emitted from the mantle of the earth during geological history.

3) Warmer periods of the Earth’s history came around 800 years before rises in CO2 levels.

4) After World War II, there was a huge surge in recorded CO2 emissions but global temperatures fell for four decades after 1940.

5) Throughout the Earth’s history, temperatures have often been warmer than now and CO2 levels have often been higher – more than ten times as high.

6) Significant changes in climate have continually occurred throughout geologic time.

7) The 0.7C increase in the average global temperature over the last hundred years is entirely consistent with well-established, long-term, natural climate trends.

8) The IPCC theory is driven by just 60 scientists and favourable reviewers not the 4,000 usually cited.

9) Leaked e-mails from British climate scientists – in a scandal known as “Climate-gate” - suggest that that has been manipulated to exaggerate global warming

10) A large body of scientific research suggests that the sun is responsible for the greater share of climate change during the past hundred years.

11) Politicians and activiists claim rising sea levels are a direct cause of global warming but sea levels rates have been increasing steadily since the last ice age 10,000 ago

12) Philip Stott, Emeritus Professor of Biogeography at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London says climate change is too complicated to be caused by just one factor, whether CO2 or clouds

13) Peter Lilley MP said last month that “fewer people in Britain than in any other country believe in the importance of global warming. That is despite the fact that our Government and our political class—predominantly—are more committed to it than their counterparts in any other country in the world”.

14) In pursuit of the global warming rhetoric, wind farms will do very little to nothing to reduce CO2 emissions

15) Professor Plimer, Professor of Geology and Earth Sciences at the University of Adelaide, stated that the idea of taking a single trace gas in the atmosphere, accusing it and finding it guilty of total responsibility for climate change, is an “absurdity”

16) A Harvard University astrophysicist and geophysicist, Willie Soon, said he is “embarrassed and puzzled” by the shallow science in papers that support the proposition that the earth faces a climate crisis caused by global warming.

17) The science of what determines the earth’s temperature is in fact far from settled or understood.

18) Despite activist concerns over CO2 levels, CO2 is a minor greenhouse gas, unlike water vapour which is tied to climate concerns, and which we can’t even pretend to control

19) A petition by scientists trying to tell the world that the political and media portrayal of global warming is false was put forward in the Heidelberg Appeal in 1992. Today, more than 4,000 signatories, including 72 Nobel Prize winners, from 106 countries have signed it.

20) It is claimed the average global temperature increased at a dangerously fast rate in the 20th century but the recent rate of average global temperature rise has been between 1 and 2 degrees C per century - within natural rates

21) Professor Zbigniew Jaworowski, Chairman of the Scientific Council of the Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection in Warsaw, Poland says the earth’s temperature has more to do with cloud cover and water vapor than CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.

22) There is strong evidence from solar studies which suggests that the Earth’s current temperature stasis will be followed by climatic cooling over the next few decades

23) It is myth that receding glaciers are proof of global warming as glaciers have been receding and growing cyclically for many centuries

24) It is a falsehood that the earth’s poles are warming because that is natural variation and while the western Arctic may be getting somewhat warmer we also see that the Eastern Arctic and Greenland are getting colder

25) The IPCC claims climate driven “impacts on biodiversity are significant and of key relevance” but those claims are simply not supported by scientific research

26) The IPCC threat of climate change to the world’s species does not make sense as wild species are at least one million years old, which means they have all been through hundreds of climate cycles

27) Research goes strongly against claims that CO2-induced global warming would cause catastrophic disintegration of the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets.

28) Despite activist concerns over CO2 levels, rising CO2 levels are our best hope of raising crop yields to feed an ever-growing population

29) The biggest climate change ever experienced on earth took place around 700 million years ago

30) The slight increase in temperature which has been observed since 1900 is entirely consistent with well-established, long-term natural climate cycles

31) Despite activist concerns over CO2 levels, rising CO2 levels of some so-called “greenhouse gases” may be contributing to higher oxygen levels and global cooling, not warming

32) Accurate satellite, balloon and mountain top observations made over the last three decades have not shown any significant change in the long term rate of increase in global temperatures

33) Today’s CO2 concentration of around 385 ppm is very low compared to most of the earth’s history – we actually live in a carbon-deficient atmosphere

34) It is a myth that CO2 is the most common greenhouse gas because greenhouse gases form about 3% of the atmosphere by volume, and CO2 constitutes about 0.037% of the atmosphere

35) It is a myth that computer models verify that CO2 increases will cause significant global warming because computer models can be made to “verify” anything

36) There is no scientific or statistical evidence whatsoever that global warming will cause more storms and other weather extremes

37) One statement deleted from a UN report in 1996 stated that “none of the studies cited above has shown clear evidence that we can attribute the observed climate changes to increases in greenhouse gases”

38) The world “warmed” by 0.07 +/- 0.07 degrees C from 1999 to 2008, not the 0.20 degrees C expected by the IPCC

39) The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says “it is likely that future tropical cyclones (typhoons and hurricanes) will become more intense” but there has been no increase in the intensity or frequency of tropical cyclones globally

40) Rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere can be shown not only to have a negligible effect on the Earth’s many ecosystems, but in some cases to be a positive help to many organisms

41) Researchers who compare and contrast climate change impact on civilizations found warm periods are beneficial to mankind and cold periods harmful

42) The Met Office asserts we are in the hottest decade since records began but this is precisely what the world should expect if the climate is cyclical

43) Rising CO2 levels increase plant growth and make plants more resistant to drought and pests

44) The historical increase in the air’s CO2 content has improved human nutrition by raising crop yields during the past 150 years

45) The increase of the air’s CO2 content has probably helped lengthen human lifespans since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution

46) The IPCC alleges that “climate change currently contributes to the global burden of disease and premature deaths” but the evidence shows that higher temperatures and rising CO2 levels has helped global populations

47) In May of 2004, the Russian Academy of Sciences published a report concluding that the Kyoto Protocol has no scientific grounding at all.

48) The “Climate-gate” scandal pointed to a expensive public campaign of disinformation and the denigration of scientists who opposed the belief that CO2 emissions were causing climate change

49) The head of Britain’s climate change watchdog has predicted households will need to spend up to £15,000 on a full energy efficiency makeover if the Government is to meet its ambitious targets for cutting carbon emissions.

50) Wind power is unlikely to be the answer to our energy needs. The wind power industry argues that there are “no direct subsidies” but it involves a total subsidy of as much as £60 per MWh which falls directly on electricity consumers. This burden will grow in line with attempts to achieve Wind power targets, according to a recent OFGEM report.

51) Wind farms are not an efficient way to produce energy. The British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) accepts a figure of 75 per cent back-up power is required.

52) Global temperatures are below the low end of IPCC predictions not at “at the top end of IPCC estimates”

53) Climate alarmists have raised the concern over acidification of the oceans but Tom Segalstad from Oslo University in Norway , and others, have noted that the composition of ocean water – including CO2, calcium, and water – can act as a buffering agent in the acidification of the oceans.

54) The UN’s IPCC computer models of human-caused global warming predict the emergence of a “hotspot” in the upper troposphere over the tropics.  Former researcher in the Australian Department of Climate Change, David Evans, said there is no evidence of such a hotspot

55) The argument that climate change is a of result of global warming caused by human activity is the argument of flat Earthers.

56) The manner in which US President Barack Obama sidestepped Congress to order emission cuts shows how undemocratic and irrational the entire international decision-making process has become with regards to emission-target setting.

57) William Kininmonth, a former head of the National Climate Centre and a consultant to the World Meteorological Organisation, wrote “the likely extent of global temperature rise from a doubling of CO2 is less than 1C. Such warming is well within the envelope of variation experienced during the past 10,000 years and insignificant in the context of glacial cycles during the past million years, when Earth has been predominantly very cold and covered by extensive ice sheets.”

58) Canada has shown the world targets derived from the existing Kyoto commitments were always unrealistic and did not work for the country.

59) In the lead up to the Copenhagen summit, David Davis MP said of previous climate summits, at Rio de Janeiro in 1992 and Kyoto in 1997 that many had promised greater cuts, but “neither happened”, but we are continuing along the same lines

60) The UK ’s environmental policy has a long-term price tag of about £55 billion, before taking into account the impact on its economic growth.

61) The UN’s panel on climate change warned that Himalayan glaciers could melt to a fifth of current levels by 2035. J. Graham Cogley a professor at Ontario Trent University, claims this inaccurate stating the UN authors got the date from an earlier report wrong by more than 300 years.

62) Under existing Kyoto obligations the EU has attempted to claim success, while actually increasing emissions by 13 per cent, according to Lord Lawson. In addition the EU has pursued this scheme by purchasing “offsets” from countries such as China paying them billions of dollars to destroy atmospheric pollutants, such as CFC-23, which were manufactured purely in order to be destroyed.

63) It is claimed that the average global temperature was relatively unchanging in pre-industrial times but sky-rocketed since 1900, and will increase by several degrees more over the next 100 years according to Penn State University researcher Michael Mann. There is no convincing empirical evidence that past climate was unchanging, nor that 20th century changes in average global temperature were unusual or unnatural.

64) Michael Mann of Penn State University has actually shown that the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age did in fact exist, which contrasts with his earlier work which produced the “hockey stick graph” which showed a constant temperature over the past thousand years or so followed by a recent dramatic upturn.

65) The globe’s current approach to climate change in which major industrialised countries agree to nonsensical targets for their CO2 emissions by a given date, as it has been under the Kyoto system, is very expensive.

66) The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed that a scientific team had emailed one another about using a “trick” for the sake of concealing a “decline” in temperatures when looking at the history of the Earth’s temperature.

67) Global temperatures have not risen in any statistically-significant sense for 15 years and have actually been falling for nine years. The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed a scientific team had expressed dismay at the fact global warming was contrary to their predictions and admitted their inability to explain it was “a travesty”.

68) The IPCC predicts that a warmer planet will lead to more extreme weather, including drought, flooding, storms, snow, and wildfires. But over the last century, during which the IPCC claims the world experienced more rapid warming than any time in the past two millennia, the world did not experience significantly greater trends in any of these extreme weather events.

69) In explaining the average temperature standstill we are currently experiencing, the Met Office Hadley Centre ran a series of computer climate predictions and found in many of the computer runs there were decade-long standstills but none for 15 years – so it expects global warming to resume swiftly.

70) Richard Lindzen, Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, wrote: “The notion of a static, unchanging climate is foreign to the history of the Earth or any other planet with a fluid envelope.  Such hysteria (over global warming) simply represents the scientific illiteracy of much of the public, the susceptibility of the public to the substitution of repetition for truth.”

71) Despite the 1997 Kyoto Protocol’s status as the flagship of the fight against climate change it has been a failure.

72) The first phase of the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), which ran from 2005 to 2007 was a failure. Huge over-allocation of permits to pollute led to a collapse in the price of carbon from €33 to just €0.20 per tonne meaning the system did not reduce emissions at all.

73) The EU trading scheme, to manage carbon emissions has completely failed and actually allows European businesses to duck out of making their emissions reductions at home by offsetting, which means paying for cuts to be made overseas instead.

74) To date “cap and trade” carbon markets have done almost nothing to reduce emissions.

75) In the United States , the cap-and-trade is an approach designed to control carbon emissions and will impose huge costs upon American citizens via a carbon tax on all goods and services produced in the United States. The average family of four can expect to pay an additional $1700, or £1,043, more each year. It is predicted that the United States will lose more than 2 million jobs as the result of cap-and-trade schemes.

76) Dr Roy Spencer, a principal research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, has indicated that out of the 21 climate models tracked by the IPCC the differences in warming exhibited by those models is mostly the result of different strengths of positive cloud feedback – and that increasing CO2 is insufficient to explain global-average warming in the last 50 to 100 years.

77) Why should politicians devote our scarce resources in a globally competitive world to a false and ill-defined problem, while ignoring the real problems the entire planet faces, such as: poverty, hunger, disease or terrorism.

78) A proper analysis of ice core records from the past 650,000 years demonstrates that temperature increases have come before, and not resulted from, increases in CO2 by hundreds of years.

79) Since the cause of global warming is mostly natural, then there is in actual fact very little we can do about it. (We are still not able to control the sun).

80) A substantial number of the panel of 2,500 climate scientists on the United Nation’s International Panel on Climate Change, which created a statement on scientific unanimity on climate change and man-made global warming, were found to have serious concerns.

81) The UK’s Met Office has been forced this year to re-examine 160 years of temperature data after admitting that public confidence in the science on man-made global warming has been shattered by revelations about the data.

82)  Politicians and activists push for renewable energy sources such as wind turbines under the rhetoric of climate change, but it is essentially about money – under the system of Renewable Obligations. Much of the money is paid for by consumers in electricity bills. It amounts to £1 billion a year.

83) The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed that a scientific team had tampered with their own data so as to conceal inconsistencies and errors.

84) The “Climate-gate” scandal revealed that a scientific team had campaigned for the removal of a learned journal’s editor, solely because he did not share their willingness to debase science for political purposes.

85) Ice-core data clearly show that temperatures change centuries before concentrations of atmospheric CO2 change. Thus, there appears to be little evidence for insisting that changes in concentrations of CO2 are the cause of past temperature and climate change.

86) There are no experimentally verified processes explaining how CO2 concentrations can fall in a few centuries without falling temperatures – in fact it is changing temperatures which cause changes in CO2 concentrations, which is consistent with experiments that show CO2 is the atmospheric gas most readily absorbed by water.

87) The Government’s Renewable Energy Strategy contains a massive increase in electricity generation by wind power costing around £4 billion a year over the next twenty years. The benefits will be only £4 to £5 billion overall (not per annum). So costs will outnumber benefits by a range of between eleven and seventeen times.

88) Whilst CO2 levels have indeed changed for various reasons, human and otherwise, just as they have throughout history, the CO2 content of the atmosphere has increased since the beginning of the industrial revolution, and the growth rate has now been constant for the past 25 years.

89) It is a myth that CO2 is a pollutant, because nitrogen forms 80% of our atmosphere and human beings could not live in 100% nitrogen either: CO2 is no more a pollutant than nitrogen is and CO2 is essential to life.

90) Politicians and climate activists make claims to rising sea levels but certain members in the IPCC chose an area to measure in Hong Kong that is subsiding. They used the record reading of 2.3 mm per year rise of sea level.

91) The accepted global average temperature statistics used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change show that no ground-based warming has occurred since 1998.

92) If one factors in non-greenhouse influences such as El Nino events and large volcanic eruptions, lower atmosphere satellite-based temperature measurements show little, if any, global warming since 1979, a period over which atmospheric CO2 has increased by 55 ppm (17 per cent).

93) US President Barack Obama pledged to cut emissions by 2050 to equal those of 1910 when there were 92 million Americans. In 2050, there will be 420 million Americans, so Obama’s promise means that emissions per head will be approximately what they were in 1875. It simply will not happen.

94) The European Union has already agreed to cut emissions by 20 percent to 2020, compared with 1990 levels, and is willing to increase the target to 30 percent. However, these are unachievable and the EU has already massively failed with its Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), as EU emissions actually rose by 0.8 percent from 2005 to 2006 and are known to be well above the Kyoto goal.

95) Australia has stated it wants to slash greenhouse emissions by up to 25 percent below 2000 levels by 2020, but the pledges were so unpopular that the country’s Senate has voted against the carbon trading Bill, and the Opposition’s Party leader has now been ousted by a climate change sceptic.

96) Canada plans to reduce emissions by 20 percent compared with 2006 levels by 2020, representing approximately a 3 percent cut from 1990 levels but it simultaneously defends its Alberta tar sands emissions and its record as one of the world’s highest per-capita emissions setters.

97) India plans to reduce the ratio of emissions to production by 20-25 percent compared with 2005 levels by 2020, but all Government officials insist that since India has to grow for its development and poverty alleviation, it has to emit, because the economy is driven by carbon.

98) The Leipzig Declaration in 1996, was signed by 110 scientists who said: “We – along with many of our fellow citizens – are apprehensive about the climate treaty conference scheduled for Kyoto, Japan, in December 1997” and “based on all the evidence available to us, we cannot subscribe to the politically inspired world view that envisages climate catastrophes and calls for hasty actions.”

99) A US Oregon Petition Project stated “We urge the United States government to reject the global warming agreement that was written in Kyoto, Japan in December, 1997, and any other similar proposals. The proposed limits on greenhouse gases would harm the environment, hinder the advance of science and technology, and damage the health and welfare of mankind. There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of CO2, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate.”

100) A report by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change concluded “We find no support for the IPCC’s claim that climate observations during the twentieth century are either unprecedented or provide evidence of an anthropogenic effect on climate.”

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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Tuesday, December 16, 2014



The Lima junket: Do as I say, not as I do

John Kerry, the US Secretary of State delivered an impassioned plea to the summit on Thursday. “It was in Rio, as far back as 1992, when I heard the secretary-general declare, 'Every bit of evidence I’ve seen persuades me that we are on a course leading to tragedy,’ he said. 'This is 2014, 22 years later, and we’re still on a course leading to tragedy’.”

Ironically, the conference has remained overtly reliant on fossil fuels, in the form of diesel generators. The talks are taking place in a vast temporary village constructed on the site of the Peruvian military headquarters.

Organisers rejected powering the village with solar panels on the grounds they were too unreliable, while efforts to hook the site up to the national grid – which is half-fed by renewable energy – failed due to technical problems.

Experts say the Lima talks will have the biggest carbon footprint of any UN conference to date at more than 50,000 tons of carbon dioxide.

As well as the diesel generators, the footprint has been enlarged by the jet fuel burned by the estimated 11,000 people who flew in from abroad to attend – including roughly 4,000 from non-governmental organisations – as well as the emissions from the fleet of coaches that crawl through Lima’s gridlocked streets to shuttle delegates to and from the venue.

SOURCE





Lima: 'weak' UN deal reached that could let countries dodge green pledges

UN climate change talks have been saved from the brink of collapse by a “weak” agreement that could let countries dodge setting clear targets to cut their emissions.

Negotiations in the Peruvian capital Lima dragged on to the early hours of Sunday morning – a day and a half after their scheduled close - amid deep disagreements between rich and poor nations over the steps they should take to tackle global warming.

The divisions had threatened to derail the talks altogether but eventually resulted in a “bare minimum” deal, thrashed out by delegates who had barely slept in three days, that left many key disputes unresolved.

The Lima deal is intended to make countries issue national pledges next year outlining the action they will take to cut their carbon emissions. The pledges are then supposed to form the basis of a binding deal at talks in Paris next year to avert dangerous levels of global warming.

Rich nations including the USA and EU members had pushed for all countries to be bound by strict rules to ensure that their pledges gave clear and measurable data – akin to the UK’s Climate Change Act.

But after objections from developing nations the eventual text was watered down so the rules are voluntary. “It’s totally up to you now whether you provide that information or not,” Alden Meyer of the Union of Concerned Scientists said. “It’s the bare minimum we needed to come out of here with; it’s not what we hoped for.”

Samantha Smith, of environmental group WWF, said the rules had gone from "weak to weaker to weakest".

Ed Davey, the energy and climate change secretary, insisted he was “completely relaxed” about the watered down rules, claiming that countries would have to provide the information anyway due to “political pressure”. He denied that the UK would be left going green further and faster than its neighbours, arguing some other European nations had already gone further.

But even if detailed pledges are forthcoming Mr Davey acknowledged they would fall well short of the level necessary to avert dangerous levels of global warming, of 2C above pre-industrial levels.

There would be “a gap between what the world is offering and what the science says we need to do,” he said.

Experts warned that the scale of divisions laid bare at Lima did not bode well for the chances of securing a strong and binding global deal in Paris.

Jonathan Grant, sustainability and climate change director at PwC, said the “trench warfare” mentality between different factions seen in Lima could result in the talks “falling off the cliff in Paris”.

A long list of fundamental issues remain to be resolved over the next year, including the legal status of any Paris deal and demands from poor countries for more cash from rich nations to help them to help poorer nations cut emissions and cope with the effects of global warming.

Rich countries have previously promised a vague goal of “mobilising” $100bn of “climate finance” a year for poor nations by 2020 but the concepts are ill-defined, leading to wrangling as poor countries say their wealthier neighbours have not done enough.

“The biggest thing that is really, really unresolved is the money,” said Michael Jacobs, visiting professor at the LSE’s Grantham climate research institute.

“The developed countries have got to find some way of showing they can provide the $100bn they promised, and at least some financial contribution post-2020. This is hard: this is a core demand of the developing countries but the hardest things for the developed countries, both because they don’t feel they have got so much money but also because it’s hard to budget ahead.”

Mr Davey admitted that the talks in Paris were likely to be "even more difficult than Lima" but said he remained confident of a deal. “I’m very excited by the prospects for a deal next year. It will be tough but for the first time, I think ever, the world can contemplate a global deal applicable to all.”

SOURCE





Greenpeace again offends indigenous people

Radical global warming campaigners trespass on treasured Inca cultural sites

By Craig Rucker

Greenpeace likes to pretend it’s on the side of local people, especially indigenous peoples. But time and again they demonstrate a shocking degree of cultural boorishness.

Now Greenpeace activists have Peruvians up in arms, after trespassing all over treasured Incan cultural sites at Machu Picchu and Nazca, while doing ridiculous publicity stunts to highlight their claim that tiny amounts of plant-fertilizing carbon dioxide are causing “dangerous” planet-wide climate change.

The Times of London’s Ben Webster says a Peruvian prosecutor investigating the incident was angry that the activists had caused “irreparable damage” to a large area of the “Nazca lines,” an ancient monument that UNESCO lists as a World Heritage Site. The “lines” are a series of ancient glyphs in the country’s southern desert region. Hundreds of figures include stylized fish, hummingbirds, lizards, monkeys and spiders. Archeologists believe they were created by the Nacza culture 1360-1615 years ago.

The damage affects some 1,600 square meters (0.4 acres) next to a hummingbird etched into the desert soil. A spokeswoman for the prosecutor said that, under Peruvian law, damaging the historic site could be punishable by a prison sentence of three to six years. The Peruvian cultural ministry is also considering suing Greenpeace for damages, Webster said.

I challenged the inconsiderate Rainbow Warriors inside the UN climate confab, during their press conference. You can watch the exchange here. A year ago, Russia jailed another band of Greenpeaceniks for trespassing on one of its oil rigs. It will be interesting to see how Peruvian authorities punish these thoughtless desecrators of Incan cultural sites. Stay tuned to our www.CFACT.org website.

Big Green and other Leftist ideologues are blind to the harm their actions cause.  As blind as so many people in Southeast Asia will be if Greenpeace propaganda succeeds in denying them access to the GMO “Golden Rice” that their diets need to ensure good visual health.

Eco activists cry a river for plants or bugs, but think nothing about parents and children dying from malaria, because of their opposition to insecticides and the powerful spatial repellant DDT; going blind from Vitamin A deficiency, because of Golden Rice boycotts; or getting sick and dying from lung and intestinal diseases, because these radical greens also oppose large-scale electrical generating plants.

The huge letters the Greenpeace gang used to desecrate this sensitive cultural site are plastic! Which is made from petroleum! Which Greenpeace denounces as evil and planet-destroying! The “go solar” slogan on the mountains above Machu Picchu was projected using equipment that was powered by hydrocarbons. What hypocrites these campaigners be!

CFACT representatives had an opportunity to speak with some Inca people at their sacred places, and with local Peruvian leaders in Lima. We visited with respect and forged friendships. That's what happens when you care about people.

Many politicians and business people are afraid to stand up to Big Green bully groups. CFACT is unafraid. We have challenged Greenpeace and Big Green at every opportunity, such as here, here, here and here. We are committed to working for people, as well as nature.

Greenpeace has hundreds of millions of dollars a year at its disposal for its fight against human freedom, health and prosperity. We have a tiny fraction of that. But we make it count – not just on educational efforts, but for programs that directly support and assist poor indigenous villages and people.

Via email





UK: Green policies to add up to 40pc to cost of household electricity

Official figures — initially withheld by ministers — show an alarming increase in the price of electricity caused by generous subsidies to wind farms as well as other policies.

An average household is expected to pay as much as £250 more for electricity – mainly through consumer subsidies – to pay for the Government’s green energy schemes, while an electrically heated house could be as much as £440 a year worse off.

And by 2030, when thousands of planned offshore wind turbines are finally operating, the burden will be even greater, the numbers show. The average household could be paying an extra 60 per cent for electricity – equivalent to £350 more a year.

Medium-sized businesses will be hit very hard, according to the new data. On average such companies will see electricity bills rise by more than £500,000 a year – a cost likely to be passed on to consumers.

The figures were made public last week by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) following a Freedom of Information request by campaigners. The information was initially prepared for an official DECC report – released at the beginning of November – which claimed that the average household fuel bill had fallen by £90 thanks to the “impact of DECC policies”.

But the tables showing the actual cost of green policies on future electricity prices for households and businesses in 2020 and 2030 were kept secret because they were “thought to be confusing”.

Their release now will embarrass ministers, who are accused of presiding over an expensive consumer subsidy system.

The Government’s climate change policies include complex consumer subsidies for wind and solar farms, as well as grants for energy efficiency measures such as loft and wall insulation, available to certain households.

The introduction of smart meters, which it is hoped will encourage lower consumption, also helped contribute to rising electricity prices.

Dr John Constable, director of Renewable Energy Foundation, the think tank whose Freedom of Information request was responsible for forcing DECC to release the price impact tables, said: “The striking scale and increasing trend of the climate policy energy price impacts are bad enough in themselves, but DECC’s attempt to conceal these vitally important figures is breathtaking.”

Dr Constable said he had been told by informed sources that pressure had been put on DECC to withhold the tables.

“This is a very unsatisfactory situation," he said, "Energy price impact data is so intrinsically important, and policy transparency so crucial to public trust in government, that very firm intervention is needed to clear the air and ensure that it will not happen again. This sounds like a job for the Prime Minister.”

DECC’s initial 88-page report was published on Nov 6, but the raw data on which the findings were based were omitted.

The Renewable Energy Foundation requested the figures and this week they were finally made available.

The supplementary tables show the “average impact of energy and climate change policies on households’ energy prices” will see the cost of electricity rise by as much as 42 per cent by 2020 from £131 per megawatt hour (MWh) to £186.

An average household uses about 4.5 MWh, meaning a rise of as much as £250 in the cost of electricity. By 2030, the price of a megwatt hour will increase by 60 per cent to £206.

Medium-sized businesses, according to DECC’s own figures, will pay as much as 77 per cent more for electricity in 2020 and 114 per cent more in 2030.

Such business on average consume 11,000 MWh – adding as much as £560,000 a year to the electricity bill. A typical bill could rise from £760,000 a year to £1.3 million.

DECC has claimed overall bills will fall because its green policies will lead to a reduction in household energy consumption with measures such as improved insulation and increased efficiency of electrical appliances leading to an overall drop in bills, it says.

A DECC spokesman said a decision had been taken to withhold the tables because it was “thought to be confusing”.

She said: “We always said we would publish the data anyway. It is not written anywhere but that is what we were quite clear about.”

She added: “Without the Government’s policies bills would still be higher.”

SOURCE






Ohio Joins Global Effort to Slam the Door on Big Wind

Wherever wind farms have appeared – or have been threatened – big numbers of locals take a set against the monsters being speared into their previously peaceful – and often idyllic – rural communities. Their anger extends to the goons that lied their way to development approval – and the bent officials that rubber-stamped their applications and who, thereafter, help the operators ride roughshod over locals’ rights to live in and enjoy the peace and comfort of their own homes and properties.

Australians are in there fighting hard – with the numbers solidly against wind power outfits that cause nothing more than community division and open hostility where ever they go

The Irish have already hit the streets to bring an end to the fraud: some 10,000 stormed Dublin back in April. The sense of anger in Ireland – as elsewhere – is palpable (see our post here).

Rural Ontario is seething, with locals taking the law into their own hands – sabotaging turbines and construction equipment in order to defend their (once) peaceful and prosperous communities

And the Scots have joined in – tearing down MET masts in order to prevent wind power outfits from gaining a foothold and, thereafter, violating their right to live free from turbine terror

The back-lash against wind power outfits has been mirrored in the US – with communities rallying to shut down projects before they begin; and a raft of litigation launched by neighbours

In the US, even turbine hosts – who we’re repeatedly told by the wind industry’s pseudo-scientist advocates NEVER complain about turbine noise impacts on their homes and health – have issued civil actions against the companies that pay them handsomely to let them plant their giant fans in the top paddock.

In Texas, 23 of them are suing 2 wind power outfits for damages caused by excessive noise – which has led to health problems and homes being abandoned – true to form, the companies involved had lied to the farmers concerned about the noise their turbines would generate from the very beginning (see our post here).
Now, farmers in Ohio have taken up the battle to defend their homes, properties and families from turbine tyranny.

SOURCE





Australia: Just another morning of the ABC’s pet warming activists

The ABC is Australia's  main public broadcaster

Of course the ABC is not biased.

True, ABC Melbourne 774 got its update on the Lima global warming talks this morning from Erwin Jackson of the alarmist Climate Institute, sponsored by green carpetbaggers, and treated him like a dispassionate authority.

Sure ABC Radio National today interviewed Tim Flannery, head of the alarmist Climate Council, as if he, too, were a dispassionate expert, not even asking that he declare his own vested interests or explain any of his countless dud predictions. Heck, the interviewer didn’t even laugh at the irony of Flannery denouncing “scaremongers”, and ended by noting what a “privilege” it was to talk to the old scaremonger himself.

No, the ABC isn’t biased at all. I mean, isn’t everyone a Greens voting, Abbott-hating, Billy Bragg-playing global warming alarmist?

When will the ABC be forced to live up to its statutory duty to offer balance and a range of voices?

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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