Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The week that was

Perhaps the major environmental news of the week was a friendly interview of Phil Jones, the former head of the Climatic Research Unit (CRU), by BBC’s Roger Harabin. After the interview, a question and answer statement, with some corrections, was released by BBC.

In the interview Jones stated that although there has been a modest warming trend since 1995, it is not statistically significant. Further, there is no statistically significant difference among the four warming trends of 1860-1880, 1910-40, 1975-1995, and 1975-2009. Thus, one can not use the global surface temperature record to statistically establish that the recent warming was different from past warming periods. Many “skeptics” have been vindicated – the global surface temperature datasets do not establish a statistically defensible link between carbon dioxide emissions and the recent warming.

Jones claims the agreement between the CRU and the NASA GISS, and NOAA datasets indicates nothing is wrong. However all three may be wrong. Reports by D’Aleo, Watts, the Russian Institute of Economic Analysis, etc. strongly suggest that the three global surface temperature datasets have been heavily compromised in recent years and likely contain strong warming biases.

These revelations contradict the findings of the IPCC and US EPA in its Endangerment Finding. Since, IPCC and EPA failed to offer strong physical evidence that the recent warming was caused by carbon dioxide emissions, their claims that CO2 was the cause are not scientifically defensible by statistics or physical science.

On New Year’s Eve, after years of requests under the Freedom of Information Act, NASA GISS released emails and data related to its reports on global surface temperatures. The NASA GISS dataset depends, in part, on NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center dataset but is calculated differently. It will take diligent work to understand the full impact of what is being revealed. But the January reports by D’Aleo, et al. on the disappearance of 565 of 600 Canadian weather stations from NASA and NOAA datasets are indications of what may come.

As a whole, the US media has been dismissive of the importance of Climategate and subsequent revelations. The non-scientific claims of the IPCC are considered by many commentators as insignificant. A reading of Chapter 9, “Transforming the Energy Sector and Addressing Climate Change,” in the recently released Economic Report of the President illustrates the significance of the scientifically unsupported claims by IPCC.

The chapter begins by citing claims that CO2 emissions will likely cause large temperature increases – all from IPCC models that have never been validated thus have no predictive power. It continues with claims of “increased mortality rates, reduced agricultural yields in many parts of the world, and rising sea levels that could inundate low-lying coastal areas.”

“The planet has not experienced such a rapid warming on a global scale in many thousands of years, and never as a result of emissions from human activity.”

Elsewhere the President’s report cites EPA’s Endangerment Finding, calculates massive increases in property damage from increased severity of storms, justifies cap-and-trade, and promotes spending $60 Billion in cash and $30 Billion in tax credits for alternative energy. Of course tax credits benefit only those with high tax liabilities (high incomes).

The claims of increased mortality rates and reduced agriculture yields (found in IPCC reports) are directly contradicted by late 20th Century history, the period claimed to be one of unprecedented warming. During this time mortality rates generally went down, human longevity up, and agricultural yields increased dramatically. Ironically, after declaring agricultural yields will decline the President’s report embraced an increase in mandatory bio-fuel use in gasoline from 9 billion gallons in 2008 to 36 billion gallons by 2022. It does not calculate the farm acreage required for this effort.

The claimed massive increases in property damage are, no doubt, based on IPCC’s claim in which the actual study found no statistically significant link between warming and catastrophic property damage. Sea levels have increased about 400 feet in the last 18,000 years or about 27 inches per century. The report cites a 7 inch rise since 1900 as if it is alarming. The statement that the “planet has not experienced such a rapid warming” has no merit.

Perhaps most journalists consider spending $90 Billion on various schemes to “fight climate change” insignificant. But one would hope for better scientific justification.


Global warming sentiment: A tipping point

This is not intended to toot our own horn, but to demonstrate the reading public’s common sense about global warming. Our column last Sunday, What to Say to a Global Warming Alarmist, was the most-read, bylined article on the Register’s website for almost a four-day period. We also got more than 100 e-mails from readers of the column. We mention this because in all that traffic, I recieved only three e-mails defending global warming. Three.

The game’s up, folks. People realize global warming scare-stories have been a scam and a fraud to get into their wallets and to advance control for those who want to run your lives.

Better yet, the erosion of this false threat is just beginning in this, an election year. Watch as congressional advocates accelerate their retreat and candidates purposely distance themselves from the issue.

By this time next year, global warming won’t rise to the level of late-night TV jokes. That’s my prediction. Of course, the other side’s prediction was that by this time next year we’d be well beyond the tipping point and falling toward a fiery end. Mark your calendars and tell us which prediction is closer to the truth come February 19, 2011.


Getting it partly right on weather vs. climate

Eugene Robinson in today’s Washington Post protests that global warming skeptics are using the current (though very long) cold snap in the mid-Atlantic region, which encompasses the nation’s capital, to confuse weather - a short-term phenomenon - with climate.

Robinson, who last year won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary, correctly notes that, “the Earth is really, really big. It’s so big that it can be cold here and warm elsewhere - and this is the key concept - at the same time. Even if it were unusually cold throughout the continental United States, that still represents less than 2 percent of the Earth’s surface.”

True enough. And he adds:
Those who want to use our harsh winter to ‘disprove’ the theory that the planet’s atmosphere is warming should realize that anecdotal evidence always cuts both ways. Before the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, crews were using earth-movers and aircraft to deposit snow on the ski runs - the winter had been unusually warm. Preliminary data from climate scientists indicate that January, in terms of global temperatures, was actually hotter than usual. Revelers participating in Rio de Janeiro’s annual carnival, which ended Tuesday, sweltered in atypical heat, with temperatures above 100 degrees. Fortunately, the custom during carnival is not to wear much in the way of clothing.

Again, true enough. And regrettably I once again missed going to the Rio Carnival, but hope springs eternal.

But here’s what he doesn’t say. His people have long played exactly the same game.

There’s a wonderful website that keep a more or less comprehensive list of all the things that warmists have attributed to “global climate change” - and mind you, the very term “global climate change’ was coined precisely to be able to tie any change, including things associated with cooling - to the effects of greenhouse gases. One glance at the site blows you away. I want you to click on this link right now and not continue with this blog until you have.

No. Stop. You didn’t click on the link. Do it now.

Okay, the point is made, isn’t it? It includes everything from “acne” to “yellow fever” with “short-nosed dogs endangered” in between. And there are lots of instances of weather change. In fact, time and again cold weather and its fall-out, including blizzards, have been attributed to “global climate change.”

This is from an article of mine that appeared 13 years ago:
But there it was, the cover of the Jan. 22 Newsweek: “Blizzards, floods & hurricanes: Blame global warming.” There also was the New York Times front-page article by William K. Stevens headlined “Blame global warming for the blizzard” and a nationally syndicated article by environmentalist Jessica Matthews that ran under titles such as “Brrr, global warming brings our blizzard.”

Moreover, I note. Moreover, I say for emphasis, while this was a perfect opportunity for Robinson to show he was playing fair, he could have pointed out they’re doing it even now.

Moreover, Robinson could have seen it in his own newspaper from just days ago. There it was, right in the headline of a column by uber-environmentalist Bill McKibben, “Washington’s Snowstorms, Brought to You by Global Warming.” Time magazine also argues “climate change could in fact make such massive snowstorms more common, even as the world continues to warm.” And of course I could go on and on, but point made.

If you live in the mid-Atlantic, don’t go out without a coat. But hypocrisy is a mantle never worn well.


The Multi-Billion Dollar Global Warming Fraud

By Alan Caruba

As the massive global warming fraud implodes, the one aspect of it that has not been explored in depth is the equally massive waste of billions of dollars spent by the United States and nations around the world, we were told, to avoid global warming.

Whole industries such as automobile manufacture had demands and limits put on them. Some states required utilities to buy “carbon credits” to offset their use of “fossil fuels.” The list of things attributed to global warming expanded to the point of total absurdity.

The codification of the fraud into law began with the Kyoto Protocol, an element of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change whose purpose was to fight a global warming that we now know was not happening.

The data to support the fraud came out of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that specialized in distorting climate data in every way possible to emphasize a normal warming cycle and then to minimize any indication of a new cooling cycle dating to around 1998 or earlier.

The IPCC data, released periodically in reports purporting to be the work of some 2,500 scientists from around the world, were actually based the handiwork of a few academic centers such as the Climate Research Center (CRU) at East Anglia University in England, Penn State University, the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, and climate modeling from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California.

Other participants in the fraud were NASA’s Goddard Institute and NOAA, both of whom produced claims, predictions, and questionable data to support “global warming.”

In the U.S. alone, I have heard figures in the area of $50 billion that have been spent on “climate change” over the course of administrations dating back to Clinton. In England, between 2006 and 2008, the government spent the equivalent of nearly $14 million (U.S.) on publicity stunts to convince Brits that global warming was real.

It is legitimate to ask if global warming has not in effect been a criminal enterprise.

The Kyoto Protocol required the nation states that signed onto it to commit to a reduction of four “greenhouse” gas, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulphur hexafluoride, and two groups of gases, hydrofluorocarbons and perflourocarbons. These gases occur in minimal amounts in the Earth’s atmosphere which is composed primarily of 95% to 97% water vapor!

The cost of accepting this commitment is measured in several ways, not the least of which was the sale of “carbon credits” to utilities and to industrial enterprises that would permit them to function outside the limits imposed. The exchanges created for this purpose prospered but it increased the cost of providing electrical energy and the manufacture of all manner of products.

The limitations, however, did not apply to either China or India, both of which were exempted, as were undeveloped Third World nations.

The climate change fraud also affected major U.S. corporations, none of whom wanted to appear to be opposed to it. However, on Tuesday, February 16th, BP America, Conoco Phillips, and Caterpillar all announced they were dropping out of the Climate Action Partnership that advocated energy-rationing. Some of the millions squandered on various global warming and “environmental” projects and groups came from the bottom line of corporations across the nation.

At this point, any corporation that speaks of “climate change” in its advertising and other public statements is part of the global fraud that originated in the United Nations Environmental Program.

The carbon emissions limitations also served to justify huge public subsidies for U.S. producers of wind and solar energy, called “clean” energy. Several nations, such as Spain, Germany and Great Britain, invested heavily in these alternative energy sources only to discover that they were massively inefficient and unreliable.

At the same time, the global warming fraud in the United States limited the building of coal-fired plants to generate electricity when, in fact, coal provides 50% of the nation’s electricity needs. Combined with fears of nuclear energy dating back to the 1970s, the United States has essentially starved itself of the energy it needs.

According to a recently released study by the National Association of Utility Regulatory Commissioners, the U.S. gross domestic product would lose $2.36 trillion and American consumers will pay an additional $2.35 trillion for energy if the oil and gas on federal lands remain off-limits through 2030. This constitutes a form of energy and economic suicide!

A British newspaper, the Daily Mail in a recent interview with CRU Prof. Phil Jones, revealed he knew there had been no “statistically significant” warming for the past fifteen years. Little wonder Prof. Jones and the CRU refused to honor UK Freedom of Information requests for the data on which the IPCC claims were based. He and others who provided IPCC data are under investigation.

In essence, the IPCC reports were all fraudulent and all were used to advance the global warming fraud. That is why President Obama’s claim of “overwhelming evidence” of climate change, i.e., global warming is particularly troubling.

It is essential to understand that the “Cap-and-Trade” legislation passed by the House and waiting for a vote in the Senate is based on the IPCC reports and the threat by the Environmental Protection Agency to begin regulating carbon dioxide emissions throughout the nation have no legitimate basis in science.

There are still billions at stake if global warming-related laws, projects such as wind farms or the requirement that ethanol be added to every gallon of gas purchased are permitted to proceed or continue.

Global warming as an issue or basis for any law or expenditure of public funding no longer exists. It’s long passed the time when the nation’s news media should stop referring to it as anything other than a fraud perpetrated on the people of the world.


Rebellion in Idaho

Canyon County Commissioners are furious with the Department of Environmental Quality's plan for vehicle emission testing. They're questioning what the DEQ will do with about $750-thousand dollars they would generate from the testing. Canyon County Commissioners said they are planning on an act of "civil disobedience," which means they will not test 200 of their vehicles. They said they are hoping this act will show the DEQ how they are strongly against the vehicle emission testing program. "Canyon County tried to negotiate that with the DEQ and I feel like we were stiffed armed," said Canyon County Commissioner Steve Rule.

The DEQ's emission testing program will charge motorists no more than $11-dollars every other year and $3-dollars will go directly to the DEQ. The DEQ said that money will be used for an Air Quality Education fund. But Commissioners said that money should help motorists who can't afford to fix their cars to pass the emissions test.

"Something doesn't smell right here and I guarantee it's not the air in Canyon County," said Rule.

The DEQ said they have met with commissioners multiple times in the past 5 months. The DEQ said they are following state law with their emission program. "If we don't do anything proactively we may exceed that federal standard that means people are breathing unhealthy air," said the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality spokesman Pete Wagner.

Commissioners said they are not against air quality efforts they just want to be included and want to see the evidence behind the DEQ's work. "We want the science that we haven't received showing that this is beneficial and it'll make a change in air quality," said Canyon County Commissioner Kathy Alder.

But the DEQ said they have shown the commissioners their data and explained why the program is necessary. "We have air quality monitors out in the Valley and we measure ozone concentration and report the data," said Wagner.

The emission program is still set to start on June 1st. Motorists will be notified in the mail of their testing month. Under state law anyone who does not get their vehicles tested the Idaho Department of Transportation will revoke their registration.


75 reasons to be skeptical of "global warming"

With thanks to Joshua Fulton for the huge body of work below

* Carbon dioxide contributes to only 4.2 - 8.4% of the greenhouse gas effect

* Only approximately 4% of carbon dioxide is man-made

* Water vapor accounts for 90 - 95% of the green house gas effect

* 99.99% of water vapor is natural, meaning that no amount of deindustrialization could get rid of it

* There have been many times when the temperature has been higher than it is now including the Medieval Warming Period, the Holocene, the Jurassic, and the Eemian

* Increases in carbon dioxide follow increases in temperature by about 800 years, not precede them

* Phil Jones of the Hadley CRU, and key figure in the "climategate" scandal, admits that there has been no "statistically significant" global warming since 1995

* 2008 and 2009 were the coolest two years of the decade

* During the Ordovician period carbon dioxide concentrations were twelve times what they are now, and the temperature was lower

* Solar activity is highly correlated with temperature change:

* Studies show that half of all recent warming was solar

* Mars has warmed about 0.5°C since the 1970's, approximately the same that earth has warmed over the same period

* The 0.7°C increase in temperatures over the last century is entirely consistent with well-established, long-term, natural climate trends

* The distance between Earth and Sun changes every year, affecting the amount of energy the earth receives

* Earth’s tilt oscillates between 21.4° and 24.8°, which affects the distribution of the sun's energy

* Dr. Roy Spencer has written that clouds have been a more important driver of climate than carbon dioxide since 2000

* Approximately 40% of the uncertainty in temperature projections come from uncertainty in the strength of the "feedback loop" between temperature and carbon dioxide. Recent research suggests the "feedback loop" is less than half as strong than many had presumed

* James Hansen of NASA said in a simulation of temperatures from 1880 to 2000 soot accounted for 25% of observed global warming

* Research suggests that soot could have nearly as much impact on climate change as carbon dioxide

* Antarctica has 90% of earth's ice and it is growing

* Arctic sea ice has returned to 1979 levels, which is when records began

* The Arctic ice caps have recovered from their loss in 2007

* The Arctic is now 1°C cooler than it was in the 1940's

* Polar bear populations are increasing

* Polar bears are able to swim over 60 miles continuously

* Sea level 81,000 years ago was 1 meter higher than it is now while carbon dioxide levels were lower

* A chart of sea level change over millions of years looks like this:

* According to satellite data, sea level has been decreasing since 2005

* Instead of hurting forests, the increased level of carbon dioxide has been helping them grow

* The official "record" for temperatures only goes back 150 years

* Although the IPCC may have 2500 members, only approximately 800 contribute to the scientific writing of the report

* Only 52 scientists contributed to the 2007 IPCC summary for policy makers, although diplomats from over 115 countries contributed

* Only 20% of the members of the IPCC deal with climate science

* Head of the IPCC, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri has no background in climate science. His PhD is in economics and he worked as a railway engineer before becoming head of the IPCC

* Former IPCC lead author Ben Santer openly admits that he altered portions of the 1995 IPCC report to make them "consistent with the other chapters"

* John Christy, former lead author on the 2001 IPCC report, speaks of his former co-lead authors deliberately trying to sensationalize the report

*Richard Lindzen, another lead author on the 2001 IPCC report, accused the IPCC of being "driven by politics"

* Michael Mann's "hockey stick" graph, which was featured prominently in the 2001 IPCC report, was created using only portions of a data set. The red line is the graph of Mann's selected data, while the black line is the graph of all the data:

* When asked to act as an expert reviewer on the IPCC's last two reports, Dr. Nils Axel-Morner was "astonished to find that not one of their 22 contributing authors on sea levels was a sea level specialist"

* Until 2003, the IPCC's satellite-based evidence showed no upward trend in sea level, so they used an increase of 2.3mm in one Hong Kong tide-gauge to adjust the entire global sea level up 2.3mm

* The IPCC's claim that the Himalayan glaciers were melting was based off of a phone interview with a non-scientist. They were forced to retract the claim

* The IPCC claim that global warming was led to increased natural disasters was based on an unpublished report that had not been subject to peer-review. They were forced to retract the claim

* The IPCC's claim that global warming was going to lead to deficiencies of up to 50% in African agriculture was based on a non-peer-reviewed and non-scientific paper. They were forced to retract the claim

* The IPCC's claim that "up to 40% of the Amazonian forests could react drastically to even a slight reduction in precipitation" was based on a non-peer-reviewed and non-scientific paper. They were forced to retract the claim

* The IPCC reported that 55% of the Netherlands was below sea level when just 26% of the country is below sea level. They were later forced to retract the claim

* According to the United States Historical Climatology Network (USHNC,) 90% of US climate-monitoring surface stations have been found to be "poorly situated," meaning that they have a margin of error greater than 1°C, more than the global warming in the entire 20th century. (The US surface data is generally considered the best surface data in the world):

* Many climate-monitoring surface stations are in locations that look like this:

* Temperature measurements from climate-monitoring surface stations are collected by hand. At one surface station in California, Anthony Watts found that only data from 14 out of 31 days had been completed in a month

* If a surface station is missing data for a particular day, data from surrounding surface stations is used to fill-in. Since 90% of all surface stations are poorly situated, even if a surface station itself is not poorly situated, if its data is missing for a day, there is a very good chance its temperature will be calculated using data from surface stations that are poorly situated

* In April 1978, there were 6,000 climate-monitoring surface stations. There are now about 1,200

* The vast majority of climate-monitoring stations that were lost were rural ones, which have been shown to give the most accurate data:

* The raw data is "adjusted" by a computer program. The net effect of this "adjustment" has been to increase the "adjusted" numbers over the "raw" numbers by .5°F, an increase that has been growing year by year:

* Difference between the USHCN "raw" data (in blue) and NASA "homogenized" data (in red):

* According to a leaked email in "climategate," "temperatures in Darwin [a monitoring station in Australia] were falling at 0.7 Celsius per century […]but after the homogenization, they were warming at 1.2 Celsius per century. [...][W]hen those guys “adjust,” they don’t mess around."

* According to a leaked email in "climategate," computer programmer Harry Harris called the CRU data set "hopeless," and said "the rest of the databases seem to be in nearly as poor a state as Australia was. [...]This whole project is SUCH A MESS. No wonder I needed therapy!!"

* When looking at source code leaked in "climategate" used to "process" and "adjust" temperatures, software engineer John Graham-Cumming said he found at least five errors and "wouldn't trust it"

* The Hadley CRU, the institution at the center of the "climategate" scandal, threw out original temperature data because it claimed it did not have "storage space"

* In 1990, Dr. Phil Jones, the man at the center of the "climategate" scandal, contributed to a paper arguing that the effect of urban warming in eastern China was "negligible." This became a key reference source for the IPCC. It turns out that 49 of the 84 climate-monitoring stations used for this report had no history of their locations or other details. This included 40 of the 42 rural stations. Of the rest, 18 had "certainly been moved" during the study period, including one that was moved five times over a total distance of 41 km. When Jones "re-examined" data in the same area for a 2008 paper, he found that urbanization was responsible for 40% of the warming found from 1951 to 2004

* Ross McKitrick and Patrick Michaels have argued that half of the global warming trend from 1980 to 2002 is caused by urban warming

* The Hadley CRU has been accused of using data from just 25% of Russia's surface stations, deliberately overstating Russia's warming by .64°C between the 1870's and 1990's

* According to emails leaked in "climategate," when "Climate Research" published articles by global warming skeptics, Phil Jones and others urged scientists to "stop considering 'Climate Research' as a legitimate peer-reviewed journal"

* William Connolly, a Wikipedia administrator and co-founder of Realclimate.org, a website that supports the theory of anthropogenic global warming, "touched" over 5,400 Wikipedia articles, routinely omitting voices that were skeptical of global warming

* Large computer climate models are unable to even simulate major features of past climate such as the 100 thousand year cycles of ice ages that have dominated climate for the past 700 thousand years

* This is a picture of what Britain looked like in the summer of 2009 when its sophisticated climate "supercomputer" had predicted a "barbeque summer":

* The US government spends over $2.5B funding climate research every year, and over $7B when grants for technology, tax breaks, and foreign aid are included (this is while Exxon gave $22M to global warming skeptics over a 10 year period)

* Many scientist assert that government grant money is given preferentially to advocates of man-made global warming

* Bart Chilton, a CFTC commissioner, said "carbon markets could be worth $2 trillion in transaction value – [...]within five years of trading (starting). [...]That would make it the largest physically traded commodity in the US, surpassing even oil"

* The owners of the trading floor where the carbon credits will be traded, including Goldman Sachs and Al Gore, stand to earn trillions if cap-and-trade is passed

* The cap-and-trade bill allows the government police powers to come into your home and inspect it for "energy efficiency," and to fine you every day your home is not compliant

* Australian homes now have to undergo a mandatory energy-efficiency assessment - costing up to $1500 per property - before they can be sold or rented under new laws to tackle carbon emissions

* UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has called for "global governance structure" to monitor greenhouse gases, which everyone on the planet emits with every exhale

* The United Nations forecasts that the global population will rise, peak and then decline between 2050 and 2300 to just under 9 billion

* Despite proclamations that there is a "consensus" and the debate is "settled," 18% of scientists surveyed in the last poll trying to discern scientific consensus do not believe in man-made global warming

* 45% of Americans think global warming is man-made, down 9% from just half a year earlier

* In the court case Dimmock v Secretary of State for Education and Skills, a British judge ruled that there were nine "inaccuracies" in An Inconvenient Truth, including Gore's claim that sea level could rise by up to 20 ft. The IPCC's own report predicted a maximum rise of 59cm in sea level over 100 years. The Science and Public Policy Institute has taken issue with thirty five of Gore's claims in An Inconvenient Truth

* Al Gore bought a $4M condo feet from ocean in Fisherman's Wharf, San Fransisco, a city he had explicitly warned about in An Inconvenient Truth

Hmm, well, that's suspicious, but I suppose that doesn't matter if he tells us it's alright.



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 are mirrors of this site here and here


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