Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Australia's Barrier Reef extinct in 20 years: Stupid Greenie claim

Odd that coral reefs have survived all the past warming episodes in Earth's history! Odd that coral thrives most in the WARMER waters of Northern Australia! The reef is thousands of kilometres long and stretches from barely warm waters in the South to very warm waters in the North. So it clearly can handle large temperature variations. Coral is mainly tropical. It LIKES warmth! What barefaced lies Greenies tell!

The Great Barrier Reef will become functionally extinct in less than 20 years if global warming continues at its current pace, a draft international report warns. A confidential draft of the report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), obtained by Melbourne's The Age newspaper, says that global warming will cause billions of dollars of damage to coastal areas, key ecosystems and the farming sector without massive greenhouse gas emission cuts.

In a chapter on Australia, the draft IPCC climate impacts report warns that coral bleaching in the Barrier Reef is likely to occur annually by 2030 because of warmer, more acidic seas. The reef is one of several iconic areas of Australia identified in the report as key hot spots for climate vulnerability. Others include the Kakadu National Park's wetlands, the Murray-Darling Basin and alpine zones in southern Australia.

Australian Conservation Foundation executive director Don Henry said the report was a big wake-up call. "They are saying our beloved Barrier Reef is at grave risk," Mr Henry told Sky News. "We've got a major economic and environmental problem unless we heed the call of these scientists. "I think the science is getting clearer about how just how serious and urgent it is."

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ICONIC GERMAN CAR INDUSTRY UNDER THREAT

The German car industry has warned that there will be massive job cuts if Brussels sets binding targets on greenhouse gas emissions. Meanwhile, the German EU presidency is strongly divided over the issue itself. In a letter quoted by Germany's Bild am Sonntag newspaper over the weekend, the chiefs of BMW, DaimlerChrysler, Ford, Opel and Volkswagen have strongly urged the commission to withdraw plans to make manufacturers reduce the CO2 emissions of new cars sold in the EU to an average of 120 grammes per km in 2012.

The commission plans originate from Greek environment commissioner Stavros Dimas but are opposed by Germany's industry commissioner Guenther Verheugen, with the commission last week deciding to delay a decision on the issue due to a lack of consensus between commissioners.

In a bid to influence Brussels' final position over the issue - expected to emerge in the coming weeks - German car producers have now sketched a grim scenario which would see a huge loss of manufacturing jobs from Europe to elsewhere in the world. According to their letter, Mr Dimas' scheme would mean "a massive industry-political intervention at the expense of the car industry in Europe as a whole, but particularly in Germany."

Mr Dimas believes binding legislation is necessary since car makers failed to meet their voluntary commitments, made in 2004, to reduce emissions to an industry average of 140 g per km by 2008. The issue has meanwhile exposed a deep political rift also within the German government which currently chairs the EU. Economy minister Michael Glos - a conservative - is backing the car industry and Mr Verhuegen, while environment minister Sigmar Gabriel - a social democrat - is supporting the Dimas camp. Mr Glos over the weekend publicly fell out with Mr Gabriel, telling Bild am Sonntag "The plans, conducted by Greek EU commissioner Dimas and environment minister Sigmar Gabriel against the German car industry, have to be urgently stopped."

Mr Gabriel told Brussels journalists last week that binding legislation against CO2 emissions is necessary, with Die Welt quoting his spokesman as saying Mr Glos should have a look at the 2005 German coalition agreement which apparently backs up the environment minister's position. It is not the first time that the two ministers clash over EU measures against climate change, with Mr Gabriel last week also rejecting a suggestion by Mr Glos that Germany should take the commission to court over emission quotas for German industry under the EU's Emission Trading Scheme (ETS).

Brussels in November last year decided to slash Berlin's allowances to emit greenhouse gasses under the scheme, prompting Mr Glos to look at the possibilities of suing Brussels at the European Court of Justice. Mr Gabriel said however last week that Mr Glos' suggestion would undermine the German EU presidency's goal of fighting climate change.

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ECO-PROTECTION OR ECONOMIC SUICIDE?

Europeans have set themselves up for a head-on collision between ecological purity and economic reality. With Congress poised to enact heavy-handed climate legislation, the U.S. may be doing likewise. Europe is finally realizing it cannot meet even current Kyoto Protocol commitments to cut greenhouse gas emissions 5 percent below 1990 levels, by 2012. Economic ministers are worried Kyoto will impact living standards, and send facilities and jobs to China and India, which aren't required to cut emissions.

Spain is some 20 percent above its target, Italy 15 percent -- Austria 25 percent. Germany is "just" 7 percent above its target but faces a future with no nuclear power (by law it must shut down all reactors by 2020), no coal-fired generators (greenhouse gases), little hydroelectric (4 percent of its total electricity), unreliable natural gas (Russia controls the spigots), and forests of gigantic, undependable wind turbines.

But the European Commission wants still more draconian reductions by 2020, since even perfect compliance with Kyoto would keep global temperatures from rising only 0.2 degrees Fahrenheit by 2050. That's why alarmists now say we must slash total global emissions by 60 percent to 80 percent by 2050, to keep CO2 at a "safe" level and "stabilize" a climate that has never been stable.

If poor developing nations remain exempt (as they should), developed countries will have to go virtually carbon-free to reach this goal. How will Americans slash their energy use and emissions 40, 60 or 95 percent? Such policies would change life as we know it. They would give alarmist politicians, bureaucrats and activists a leading role in every housing, heating, cooling, transportation, manufacturing, agricultural, business and consumer decision. They would terminate millions of jobs, cost hundreds of billions of dollars, and send living standards tumbling, while giving every U.S. citizen a "carbon allowance" akin to what other parts of the world now "enjoy" (2.3 tons of CO2 per year in Cuba or 1.2 in India, versus our current 19.8 or Canada's 17.9). The elderly and minority workers and families would be especially hard-hit. Deaths from winter cold and summer heat waves would soar, as energy prices rise and heating and air-conditioning become luxury items.

Other than fossil fuels, no technologies exist to provide the 100,000 megawatts of new electricity the U.S. will need during the next decade. Nuclear plants can't come online that quickly, and even the best wind turbines would require some 2 million acres (Delaware plus Rhode Island) to provide 100,000 megawatts of intermittent electricity that requires gas-powered generators (and drilling off our coasts) as backup.

Europe already has green taxes on air travel, a $50-a-day climate charge on big cars in London -- and a proposed "food miles" tax on the distance produce is shipped. Rainforest Action and CERES already pressure U.S. banks not to finance coal generators, dams and fossil fuel projects in the U.S. or Africa. Calling it "socially responsible," compliant banks cave in.

Efforts to restrict energy and economic development in Africa are "literally a life-and-death matter" for tens of millions, says University of Pretoria Emeritus Professor W.J.R. Alexander. "We can do without this resurgence of European colonialism and paternalism."

Yes, there is consensus that Earth's temperatures have risen slightly, and humans played a role. There is no consensus that climate change will be catastrophic, human CO2 emissions are the primary cause, or slashing emissions will prevent the supposed cataclysm.

It's a classic bait-and-switch tactic, repeated endlessly by activists, scientists, journalists, bureaucrats, celebrities and politicians. They used similar tactics 35 years ago to excise DDT and other insecticides from disease control programs. Tens of millions died from malaria -- and none of the perpetrators have ever apologized, admitted error or been held accountable for the unconscionable disease, brain damage and death they perpetuated. Now they say we should trust them on climate change.

More here






SYDNEY'S NEW SUBURBAN NUCLEAR REACTOR

With debate building about nuclear energy as an alternative, greenhouse-friendly power source, Australia has a new nuclear reactor - and it's already up and running. The new OPAL reactor replaces the old HIFAR facility at Lucas Heights, south of Sydney, which will be officially decommissioned today. OPAL is loaded with uranium and will produce 20 megawatts of power - enough for a small town - when it's fully operational.

But it's not the power plant Prime Minister John Howard said he'd be happy to have in his backyard while recently arguing the merits of nuclear energy. The OPAL reactor will be used for medical, industrial and research purposes, rather than cooking your dinner or running your air-conditioner. Its cooling water just isn't hot enough to drive a steam turbine and generate electricity. "I suppose you could have a shower with it but that's about all," said Ron Cameron, director of operations at the Lucas Heights research station run by the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO).

So if it isn't powering our cities, what's Australia getting from this $350 million reactor? Neutrons, according to ANSTO. Neutrons are the key to nuclear fission - when a uranium atom splits in two, it releases a load of energy and it also releases two neutrons. If these neutrons collide with another uranium atom, that atom splits as well, releasing another two neutrons, and so on, producing a chain reaction. In a nuclear power station, it's the energy that's harvested. But in a research reactor such as OPAL, it's the neutrons. "We have one of the most consistent neutron fluxes in the world. We have a very high reliability," Dr Cameron said. That reliability has given ANSTO about 15 per cent of the world market for processing the silicon chips that go inside electronic items from mobile phones to supercomputers.

But whether it's for research or power, critics question the risks of running a nuclear reactor in Sydney's backyard - such as a meltdown which potentially releases radioactive contamination into the environment. Dr Cameron said there was very little risk of that happening with OPAL because it operates at a low temperature, as opposed to power-producing reactors which run at higher temperatures, with a minimum of three people monitoring it at all times.

ANSTO is somewhat less keen to talk about the disadvantages of a nuclear reactor, but Dr Cameron admitted that over its 40-year life, OPAL will generate several cubic metres of high-level waste, which it intends to store in a remote location in the Northern Territory. Intermediate-level waste, produced in the manufacture and handling of radioisotopes, will be stored in a building the size of a small house. For many, the question remains whether that's an acceptable price to pay for the claimed medical, scientific and industrial benefits of a research reactor. A nuclear power station will produce hundreds of tonnes of waste.

Source

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Many people would like to be kind to others so Leftists exploit that with their nonsense about equality. Most people want a clean, green environment so Greenies exploit that by inventing all sorts of far-fetched threats to the environment. But for both, the real motive is generally to promote themselves as wiser and better than everyone else, truth regardless.

Global warming has taken the place of Communism as an absurdity that "liberals" will defend to the death regardless of the evidence showing its folly. Evidence never has mattered to real Leftists


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1 comment:

Gerry Wolff said...

Regarding "SYDNEY'S NEW SUBURBAN NUCLEAR REACTOR", there really is no need for nuclear power plants in Australia because there is a simple mature technology available that can deliver huge amounts of clean energy without any of the headaches of nuclear power.

I refer to 'concentrating solar power' (CSP), the technique of concentrating sunlight using mirrors to create heat, and then using the heat to raise steam and drive turbines and generators, just like a conventional power station. It is possible to store solar heat in melted salt or other substance so that electricity generation may continue through the night or on cloudy days. This technology has been generating electricity successfully in California since 1985 and half a million Californians currently get their electricity from this source. CSP plants are now being planned or built in many parts of the world.

CSP works best in hot deserts and, of course, these are not always nearby! But with transmission losses at only about 3% per 1000 km, it is entirely feasible and economic to transmit solar electricity throughout Australia from the Australian desert using highly-efficient 'HVDC' transmission lines. A small portion of the Australian desert would be sufficient to meet all of the country's needs for electricity.

Waste heat from electricity generation in a CSP plant can be used to create fresh water by desalination of sea water: a very useful by-product in arid regions.

In the 'TRANS-CSP' report commissioned by the German government, it is estimated that CSP electricity, imported from North Africa and the Middle East, could become one of the cheapest sources of electricity in Europe, including the cost of transmission. A large-scale HVDC transmission grid has also been proposed by Airtricity as a means of optimising the use of wind power throughout Europe.

Further information about CSP may be found at www.trec-uk.org.uk and www.trecers.net . Copies of the TRANS-CSP report may be downloaded from www.trec-uk.org.uk/reports.htm . The many problems associated with nuclear power are summarised at www.mng.org.uk/green_house/no_nukes.htm .