Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Google monkey business again

They have blocked me from updating DISSECTING LEFTISM on the pretext that it seems to be a spam blog. Since it has had daily updates since July 2002, they must have moronic algorithms to think so. Even more moronic is the fact that they have not blocked the large font version of the blog, which has identical content and is also updated daily. I have applied for a review of the block so I hope the block is lifted soon. I am not due to post there again until roughly 12 hours from now. They have blocked this blog three times.

Our Earth and climate change

Another dissenter writes below. Doug Wyatt is a Ph. D. geologist and geophysicist

As a geoscientist who works in that often strange area where government policy, academia and commercial practicality overlap I fully understand the quote, paraphrased from Heraclitus, circa 500BC, that "nothing is constant except change." I suspect Heraclitus had some geoscientist in him.

A recent article in EOS, the weekly magazine of the American Geophysical Union, by Kastens and others, describes a study, by a very diverse research group including theologians, anthropologists, sociologists, as well as earth scientists, about how geoscientists think. Geoscientists think temporally, in time, far into the past and future, think of the earth as a system of complex inter-related processes, stress learning based on observations of data from what the Earth tells us, and think spatially about how things are arranged in all dimensions. Change is inherent in a geologist's understanding of the Earth and is a principal tool for defining what happens between various observed events. Thinking like a geologist is a very good approach to understanding large-scale, complex problems and this includes climate change.

The issue surrounding the current climate change concern, in reality, only involves two concepts - the climate is changing and CO2 from man-made sources is the cause, or the climate is changing and it is a natural process. Common to both concepts is that the climate is changing - remember Heraclitus - and nobody argues that fact. Those scientists who study the Earth always see in their data the continuous process of global climate change occurring in predictable cycles far into the past. As a matter of fact, we count on those changes to help us understand the present and predict effects in the future.

All geoscientists, whether they study groundwater, volcanoes, earthquakes, shorelines, work in environmental cleanup, look for oil and gas, search for minerals, evaluate foundations, search the deep sea, or explore the Arctic, depend, as a primary source of information, on the cyclical process of past climate changes to help them understand the Earth. Everything that depends on geoscience knowledge, from roadways and dams, nuclear waste storage and landfills, beach renewal to hazardous waste cleanup, and anything that involves our utilization of the Earth, also depends on the understanding of past climate change processes that have produced the planet we currently know.

Thank goodness we can understand the past Earth because it is a sure predictor of what will happen in the future Earth. It is scientific folly at the most, and irrational at the least, to assume that all of a sudden the long-standing processes that affect Earth are now a lesser influence than man-made activities. There is a humanistic component to this assumption. The Earth is changing, change must be bad, humans are the greatest influence on the planet, therefore humans must be bad. The assumption implies we must "fix" the planet. We can do much, but our ability to change our orbit, regulate the sun, stop the continents, re-route ocean currents, or even accurately predict next months weather is not currently among our skills. They might be one day with more 'understanding'. Heraclitus had it right, 'change' happens, and what we must strive for is an 'understanding' of change in order to benefit from it.

There is an old joke often heard in the Earth sciences. If you ask mathematicians what two plus two is, they will say, in purist understanding, "four". If you ask an engineer what two plus two is they will say, in an engineering understanding, "four point zero." However, if you ask a geoscientist what two plus two is your answer may likely be "three for low values of two and five for high values of two" reflecting the wide range of variability found in the Earth and the understanding that change is a constant.

What we need to change is our understanding of climate and the Earth as a whole. The Earth is constantly changing, typically in cycles, always in fact, and as humans, we can strive to understand the processes of change. As humans, we are a change agent, as part of the complex set of systems that operate on our planet. Human effects on our environment must always be considered but within the balance of all existing natural Earth processes. However, human activities simply cannot dominate long-standing natural Earth processes. As numerous and important as we see ourselves, we pale in comparison to the large-scale, ancient processes and changes that define our planet. We must understand this in order to move forward. Our future welfare depends on it.


Another 'Couldifmite' Weasel Word Global Warming Story From Reuters

Could. If. Might. Take a look at almost any global warming alarmism story and you are likely to see a plethora of those speculative weasel words. It happens so frequently that your humble correspondent, in his previous global warming story about the "Modoki," labeled a new term incorporating those words: "Couldifmite."

It was my recommendation that a mineral rock be given the name of Couldifmite. Any MSM reporter in the vicinity of of Couldifmite will be subjected to the uncontrollable urge to overload his global warming stories with "could," "if," and "might" along with the related speculative weasel words of "may" and "should." Okay, there probably won't be a rock that would be given that name but it could happen if some geologist out there might have a good sense of humor. See, even I can play the Couldifmite game.

However, Gerard Wynn of Reuters isn't joking. He goes full scale Couldifmite in this latest global warming story. Even the intro to his story is chock full of Couldifmite: "Global temperatures could rise 4 degrees by 2050s. Rainfall may fall by a fifth in many regions"

This is only the Couldifmite warmup for the body of the story and Wynn does not disappoint:
LONDON, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Global temperatures may be 4 degrees Celsius hotter by the mid-2050s if current greenhouse gas emissions trends continue, said a study published on Monday.

...Leaders of the main greenhouse gas-emitting countries recognised in July a scientific view that temperatures should not exceed 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels, to avoid more dangerous changes to the world's climate.

...Temperature rises are compared with pre-industrial levels. The world warmed 0.7 degrees last century, scientists say.

Really? So how accurate were measuring instruments at the start of the 20th century to make that assertion? Plus there were still areas of the earth unexplored. Roald Amundsen did not reach the South Pole until 1911 so how were temperature measurements there even made before then? Same is true of the North Pole prior to 1909 yet we are assured that the world warmed 0.7 degrees last century. Not 0.6 or 0.8 degrees but 0.7 degrees state the scientists based on crude measurements at the early part of the century and incorporating large parts of the globe that were not even accessible back then.
A global average increase of 4 degrees masked higher regional increases, including more than 15 degrees warmer temperatures in parts of the Arctic, and up to 10 degrees higher in western and southern Africa, Monday's study found.

Whoa! Stop the music! At the beginning of this article we are told that global average temperature could rise by 4 degrees celsius. Suddenly "could" is dropped and we are presented with this speculative forecast as an absolute fact as if it already happened. Sorry, 2050 is still over 40 years away.

It appears that Gerard Wynn needs another dose of those Couldifmite rays to keep his global warming speculation story in order.


Greenie destructiveness in high gear in California

Sen. Dianne Feinstein votes to deny water to California's drought-stricken San Joaquin Valley. Farmers, families and food are being held hostage to an endangered fish called the delta smelt.

There was a time when the San Joaquin Valley was the most productive agricultural region in the world. It was a large part of what made the Golden State golden. Now it's a place where farmers no longer farm, but instead line up at food banks to feed the families of those who once fed the rest of the country and a good chunk of the world.

The largest man-made agricultural disaster since the Dust Bowl of the 1930s is unfolding in the valley due to yet another attempt to protect a fish declared to be threatened under the Endangered Species Act. This damage is being done to protect the hypomesus transpacificus, otherwise known as the delta smelt. Last December the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, in its finite wisdom, issued something called a biological opinion imposing water restrictions on the San Joaquin Valley and surrounding areas to protect the habitat of this tiny fish. The authorities forget the species homo sapiens, also part of the ecosystem, is threatened. Its habitat is being destroyed — by government edict.

To protect the smelt, billions of gallons of water from the mountains east and north of Sacramento have been channeled away from farms and into the ocean, while farmers watched their crops wither and their once-productive land become barren.

Kern County authorities say that 145,000 acres that are usually irrigated with this water were killed or underirrigated last year. The loss was estimated at $100 million in that county alone. The University of California, Davis, estimates that San Joaquin Valley farm revenue losses ranged from $482 million to $647 million. Total economic losses could hit $3 billion this year. In affected areas, the jobless rate is at 14%, with farming towns such as Mendota experiencing unemployment near 40%. In August, 50 valley mayors signed a letter to President Obama asking him to come and witness the devastation firsthand.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger says he "doesn't have the authority to turn on the pumps" that the feds have ordered turned off. In June, the administration denied his request to designate California a federal disaster area because of the drought even though the U.S. Drought Monitor lists 43% of the state as being under "severe drought" conditions.


"Green" British councils escalate their war on garbage

Worried residents thought their rubbish was being stolen when council 'spies' dressed in hoodies started rifling through their bins. Concerned neighbours saw mysterious men emptying their bins into black sacks and loading them into an unmarked white van. When homeowners questioned the official binmen an hour later they learned their council was conducting a survey of what was being thrown away.

The 'spies' were part of a week-long waste analysis study by the Northamptonshire Waste Partnership, a collaboration of eight local authorities working to reduce rubbish going to landfill. An external contractor was told to go through the bins of residents. One thousand houses were targeted as part of the survey, including 780 in Northamptonshire.

But none of the inhabitants of Cedar Close, Irchester, near Wellingborough, Northants, had received any notice from their council about what was going on. Resident Gillian Barnett, 61, said the snoopers made her feel 'very uncomfortable'. She said: 'Three young men parked outside my house and just started going through my bins - I thought they were pinching my rubbish. It was very suspicious. 'We haven't had a leaftlet or a letter, all my neighbours were going round asking each other what was happening. 'If they'd had "County Council" marked on their van it would have been less concerning but as it was nobody knew what was going on. 'It made me worry about what I had put in the bin - I didn't know I was going to be fined or what. 'I heard this was happening in nearby streets like Pine Close too.'

Another resident, who asked to remain anonymous, slammed the council for using 'Big Brother' tactics.

Corby, Kettering and Wellingborough Borough Councils have authorised waste experts Resource Futures to go through the bins of people living in their boroughs as part of this survey. This was to provide Project Reduce - a £138million government-funded enterprise headed by Northamptonshire County Council and Milton Keynes Council - with information about what was being sent to landfills.

Matthew Elliott, chief executive at the TaxPayers' Alliance, condemned Northampton County Council for what he described as an 'aggressive' campaign. He said: 'This sneaky behaviour on the part of the council is underhand and alarming. 'Taxpayers are sick and tired of being spied on by their councils, it is an infringement of both their dignity and personal space. 'People are doing all they can to recycle, if they are throwing something away it's because they have to. 'This approach is unnecessarily aggressive and a waste of taxpayers' money and precious resources.'

But a Northampton County Council spokeswoman insisted the survey was purely for informative purposes. She said: 'This is not a punitive measure and all data gathered will be kept strictly confidential. 'We just want to gather more information about what people are throwing away so we can target our resources to better meet their needs.'..

Corby Council lead member for the environment Cllr Peter McEwan said: 'Landfill charges are currently in excess of £60 per tonne and rising. 'It is vital that we continue to search for cleaner, greener ways to treat and dispose of our rubbish.'



Three current articles grouped below

Lots of climate skeptics among Australia's conservatives

(Reminder for readers outside Australia: The Liberal party is Australia's major conservative party)

Only 12 members of Malcolm Turnbull's backbench support their leader's plan to negotiate with Labor on an emissions scheme. [And the National Party is SOLIDLY opposed]

The opposition's emissions trading spokesman says he's not surprised two-thirds of Liberal backbenchers are opposed to negotiating with Labor over its carbon pollution reduction scheme. But Ian Macfarlane insists the alternative is to let Kevin Rudd force a "crazy" scheme on Australia that could destroy the economy. It's been revealed more than two-thirds of Liberal backbenchers disagree with Malcolm Turnbull's plan to negotiate amendments with the government on its ETS.

Just 12 of 59 federal Liberal MPs support Mr Turnbull's decision to negotiate, The Australian reports. Another 41 want the opposition to either oppose the draft laws completely or negotiate amendments only if a parliamentary vote is delayed until after global climate change talks in December.

"It is obvious to everyone on our side of politics that this is an emissions trading scheme, in its current form, that will cost jobs and will see industry close and move overseas," Mr Macfarlane told ABC Radio. "On that basis, I'm not surprised to see such strong opposition from the backbench." But while everyone in the coalition would prefer the legislation not to come before parliament until after Copenhagen, the prime minister was vowing to rush "headlong into this" so the coalition had to negotiate.

"I'm being pragmatic and I'm being open with everybody," Mr Macfarlane said. "The reality is we do not control the parliament. Control of the parliament lies with the prime minister (and) he is on this crazy path that will potentially destroy Australia's economy. "Without being able to stop him we need to ensure that the legislation that goes forward is in fact legislation that will protect jobs ... and industry." Mr Macfarlane admitted the partyroom would have the final say, but stressed the best option was to amend the legislation "if Kevin Rudd won't see sense".


Victoria celebrates as September's rainfall hits highest level since 2000

A teeth-grinder for the Greenies and their claim that drought proves global warming. Only disaster makes them happy

FARMERS are rejoicing in the best September rainfall for nine years, which could have far-reaching benefits for the Victorian economy. The Wimmera and Mallee in particular have had significant falls, providing a much-needed boost for local farmers. "A lot of people who would have been questioning their future have had their faith restored," said Farmers Federation president Andrew Broad. "It is pretty much the best start to spring we could have hoped for."

At the weekend, many parts of the state gained more than 100mm [4 inches] in 72 hours. The wettest area is Mt Baw Baw, which has received 357mm of rain this month.

And it is also good news in Melbourne as well, with the city's catchments boasting an increase of 17 billion litres. Water storages for the capital have risen from 30.8 to 31.7 per cent. But while Victoria celebrates, parts of southern NSW are still up to 20 per cent below their average for the month.


Coal firms' advertisements hit emissions plan

COALMINING companies have rolled out a multi-million-dollar advertising campaign in key mining areas warning that the Rudd government's emissions trading scheme could force pit closures and job losses. The campaign - designed by Neil Lawrence, creator of the "Kevin 07" advertising blitz that helped put Labor into office - was launched yesterday by Australian Coal Association executive director Ralph Hillman. The "Let's Cut Emissions, not Jobs" campaign began in central Queensland, which includes the key Labor-held seats of Flynn, Capricornia and Dawson, and will be rolled out in other major coalmining areas such as the Hunter Valley in NSW.

Mr Hillman said Canberra's proposed carbon reduction scheme was flawed in its treatment of coal. "The proposed plan would not cut carbon emissions while costing regional Queensland thousands of coal industry jobs," he said.

The advertisements were launched as Anglo-American chief executive Cynthia Carroll warned the ETS could cost Australia's coal industry $14 billion in its first 10 years of operation. The ads, to run on regional TV, radio and newspapers, say: "A new tax on coal mines is coming. Many thousands of regional jobs could be going."

But Assistant Climate Change Minister Greg Combet said Treasury modelling showed the coal industry would continue to grow under the government's scheme. He said only about 12 per cent of Australian coalmines would face a "material" cost under Canberra's plan, and they had been allocated $750 million in targeted assistance over the first five years of the scheme.

Mr Hillman said the coal industry accepted the science of global warming and supported action to cut carbon in the atmosphere. He said the campaign - revealed last week by The Australian - was being run because coalmining communities had not been properly warned of the effects on regional areas of the scheme in its current form. "People need to understand mines will close and thousands of jobs could go as a direct result of the proposed tax," he said. "Even more frustrating is the reality that global carbon emissions will not be reduced."



For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when blogger.com is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.


1 comment:

John A said...

Re "councils escalate their war on garbage" -

But a Northampton County Council spokeswoman insisted the survey was purely for informative purposes. She said: 'This is not a punitive measure and all data gathered will be kept strictly confidential. 'We just want to gather more information about what people are throwing away so we can target our resources to better meet their needs.'..

Corby Council lead member for the environment Cllr Peter McEwan said: 'Landfill charges are currently in excess of £60 per tonne and rising. 'It is vital that we continue to search for cleaner, greener ways to treat and dispose of our rubbish.'

Not punitive this time, but collecting data on what to fine as "unusual" or "excessive" for future else why focus on individual household bins rather than put these scanning teams at the disposal site and look at the total of what is coming in?

And sixty pounds per ton: I wager it cost thirty pounds per bin to conduct this study in this way - adding a bunch of outside temporary dweebs to the normal pickup around the area (and their vans/gas/etc.) rather than perhaps three pounds to look at what comes off the trucks at the disposal site[s].

- - - -
"Sen. Dianne Feinstein votes to deny water to California's drought-stricken San Joaquin Valley."

Be fair, she and Boxer also denied that same water to the proposed solar farm[s] in the Mojave.