Saturday, March 27, 2010

Choose reality over superstition

Instead of celebrating Earth Hour (last year they called it Earth Day) by switching off all your lights (8.30pm on Saturday 27th March) we should celebrate Human Achievement Hour by keeping them on. My suspicion is that most people will do the latter & only the most useless & pretentious parts of government will do the former which seems appropriate. eg Zimbabwean children will hold a candlelit picnic & the WWF fakecharity are pushing it.

This orbital picture shows, in a way 1,000 words couldn't do, what is wrong with pure socialism & indeed Luddite "environmentalism". One may argue correctly that less pure socialism/Luddism we have in Britain is less destructive but that is an argument only that it is less horrible not that it is in any way good.

There is a close relationship between electricity use & GNP with the developed world averaging just under $4 of GNP per kWh, China doing $2.45, Britain $6.3 & those significantly above being undeveloped, artificially increasing wealth by having oil, or so failing that electricity & the rule of law doesn't go beyond the capital city, or all 3.

There are a noisy minority who would do this in Britain if they could, though they have less organising ability than Kim. This extremely silly letter published in the Morning Star inviting us all to prove our socialist purity by supporting North Korea in the World cup. To be fair it was followed by a reply saying otherwise but to continue being fair that was followed by a further reply saying that "many reactionaries would take comfort" from the 1st reply.

My previous poll on the desired size of government showed that while there is a normal curve centering around about 17% of GNP being government spending there was a another small bump at +90% who clearly can never be even close to placated by anything acceptable to the overwhelming bulk of us (& of whom I am ungenerous enough to suspect none live out of anything but the public purse). Placating the Luddite parasites need not be done & by doing so we have just been paying Danegeld, since, as my post yesterday showed, the parasites will tell any lie to build a poorer nation if it will pay them.


UN climate change chief Rajendra Pachauri says sorry — and switches to neutral

The outspoken chairman of the UN’s climate change body is to adopt a neutral advisory role and has agreed to stop making statements demanding new taxes and other radical policies on cutting emissions.

In an interview with The Times, Rajendra Pachauri, chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, apologised for his organisation’s handling of complaints about errors in its report.

He also apologised for describing as “voodoo science” an Indian Government report which challenged the IPCC’s claims about the rapid melting of Himalayan glaciers.

But Dr Pachauri, 70, rejected calls for his resignation and insisted he would remain as chairman until after publication of the IPCC’s next report in 2014.

He claimed he had the support of all the world’s governments and denied that, by remaining in post, he was undermining the IPCC’s chances of regaining credibility with the public.

“It is not correct to say there are people who don’t trust me,” he said.

He admitted it had been a mistake to give the impression, in many interviews, that he was advocating specific actions to cut emissions. Last year, he called for higher taxes on aviation and motoring, said people should eat less meat, and proposed that hotel rooms should have electricity meters to charge people extra for using air conditioning.

Speaking in London yesterday, he said he would focus in future on presenting the science on climate change rather than advocating policies.

“I will try to clarify that I’m not prescribing anything as a solution. Maybe I should be more careful [in media interviews] in laying down certain riders. One learns from that and I’m learning.”

On the IPCC’s tardiness in responding to complaints and correcting errors — such as its claim that all Himalayan glaciers would disappear by 2035 — he said: “Our response has been much too late and much too inadequate.”

Of his “voodoo science” comment, he said: “It was an intemperate statement. I shouldn’t have used those words. I have to show respect to people who have worked on a particular subject.”

However, he said that the review of the IPCC announced this month would not consider his role or his actions. The review, by a panel drawn from the world’s leading science academies, will only consider the IPCC’s procedures.

Dr Pachauri said he wanted more power over the IPCC secretariat and an extra $1million (£671,000) a year to fund its work, on top of the $5million it already receives. The IPCC is planning to recruit more spin-doctors to help it promote its work and defend itself against attacks by climate sceptics. Dr Pachauri said that at present the organisation is “terribly ill-equipped” to communicate with the world’s media.

He dismissed suggestions that he was too old for the job and said he would be playing cricket for his institute’s team immediately after landing back in Dehli.

“I open the bowling and I swing the ball in both directions. I used to be fast, I’m gentle medium pace now. I work 16-17 hours a day, seven days a week. If you can find someone 40 years younger to do it, I would salute that person,” he said.

He rejected claims that he had personally profited from the many contracts he has to advise companies on climate change. All the money went to the charitable research institute which he heads, he said. He gave The Times a copy of his 2008-09 income tax return which showed earnings of £44,600.

A KPMG report into his financial relationship with The Energy and Resources Institute concluded: “No evidence was found that indicated personal fiduciary benefits accruing to Dr Pachauri from his various advisory roles that would have led to a conflict of interest.”



Last night I attended the Royal Philosophical Society of Glasgow lecture in which Professor Anne Glover, the Chief Science Advisor & also on the committee of NERC told us all about how dreadfully catastrophic global warming was. I am afraid I was not impressed.

The lecture started by saying how important it is that we stick to the evidence. The sceptics have even done some good by making people focus on the evidence & that was what she intended.

Her evidence for warming turns out not to be that catastrophic warming is actually taking place but that human caused CO2 emissions are rising dramatically & that this means warming must happen. She used this graph foreshortened for the period 1850-2000 & with the perpendicular graph in units of 1 - 25 but without saying in what units.

This caused me to dump the question I intended to ask, which was about the fact that virtually the entire "scientific consensus" is among the government paid.

Other evidence, from the Antarctic, being that the CO2 in air is higher than it has been in millenia (this being from ice cores & is questioned since it is possible the CO2 leaks more than Oxygen). No mention of the fact that ice at both poles is increasing & that in the Antarctic it never stopped doing so.

She acknowledged that sea level in Scotland is actually falling ie that the land is bouncing back from the last ice age faster than any sea level rise but that in Bangladesh the rise would matter. During a previous lecture to a junior school one of the pupils had said they didn't care about Bangladesh but that she had pointed out to him that in that case the people of Bangladesh would want to come here - mass population movement being another of those things global warming is responsible for.

This was followed by an acknowledgement of the value of having sceptics around because "there is no such thing as truth or certainty" in science.

Then the familiar graph showing how temperature, or at least measured temperature, has risen & also that it has fallen over recent years, though that was ignored & described as "we're experiencing climate change now."

Then there was a graph showing the probabilities of various levels of temperature increase - apparently we have an 85% chance of 2 degree warming. However apart from saying the graph proved the chances she didn't say how this relative certainty had been achieved.

This was followed by another showing what catastrophic effects such increases will have, particularly on food production - though no mention of the increased growth caused by more CO2 & the only mention of all the Canadian & Russia tundra that would become fertile was to say it would be worse at the equator. To be fair to Scotland she did say that warmer weather here might not be bad particularly with the "increase in day length in Scotland" - I kid you not. Presumably some heretofore unknown effect of global warming is that it will tilt the Earth's axis to lengthen our day.

Another effect of warming is an increase in extreme weather such as parasites moving. An example is the midge causing Bluetonge disease in cattle. This previously could only survive in Africa but has now settled in Scotland entirely because of global warming.

She then lectured us on all the non-carbon energy systems we will have to adopt - except without mentioning nuclear.

This must be achieved by the spontaneous enthusiasm of the populace. The role of government is "legislation", "information", "eduction" & "leadership".

Then I learned something I had not appreciated. I have previously written on how the government's decision to reduce CO2 by 42% by 2020, means a reduction in electricity production & thus national wealth of 50%. One of her slides showed that Holyrood has also decided that we must get rid of 100% of CO2 production in making electricity by 2030. That would leave us with about 10% from existing hydro & probably about another 5% from windmills etc. The former requires a 7% annual recession for 10 year - the latter 9% annual decline for 20 years. Perhaps I underestimated when I said the former decision, made unanimously by all parties & MSPs meant they are all clinically insane.

Having slid by that bombshell she assured us that doing all this will only cost us 1% of GNP, because Stern said so, compared to paying 8% of GNP to bail out the banks. Apart from anything else that piece of sleight of hand omits that 1% a year is not the same as 1% in total.

She finished by saying how she had visited the carbon storage project & how "my jaw dropped in amazement" at the technology. The gentleman next to me quietly said "this is Scotland's chief science advisor!".

Audience Questions. The first was about Professor Lovelock quoted as saying that it was all to late anyway. She disagreed.

Then I got mine. First I said I had to point out that Professor Lovelock, having seen the fraud going on, had evidently changed his mind & said that only the sceptics had kept the debate sane. My question was about the CO2 graph - firstly that the period of sharpest rise, roughly 1940 - 75 was, on the other graph she had shown, a period of reduced temperature. Secondly that she ought to be aware that manmade emissions accounted for only 3% of the total & that had total CO2 production been shown the graph would have been of a 3% rise rather than a 2,500% rise.

She replied saying how much she valued the contribution of sceptics it is just that they "don't provide evidence" for their doubts. Really she did. Then that what mattered is that the entire system is so well balanced & there is no countervailing way of reducing CO2 so even a tiny increase is disastrous.

Since plant growth increases with more CO2 that most certainly is a method of taking more out but I contented myself by saying that with CO2 being 300 ppm of the atmosphere & mankind producing only 3% of it that is 9 parts in a million which is not much to cause catastrophe.

She replied by saying that it was so finely balanced that just a 2 - 3C rise would be enough to melt Greenland. I wished to reply that since we have had a 4C rise during the climate optimum of 9,000 - 5,000 BC but Greenland has been unmelted for at least 650,000 years that could not be correct but was told, quite properly since it is a lecture not a debate, that my time was up.

She was also asked a couple of questions about nuclear power. Particularly had she, in her role of chief science advisor, advised the government that it was impossible to keep the lights on without nuclear? The questioner, correctly in my opinion, implied that it was her absolute duty to give good such good advice on the issue. She ducked a direct answer saying that some less chiefly advisers knew more about nuclear but agreed that "nobody ever said wind can provide baseload - baseload is coal, gas & oil" (though presumably not in 2030).

She also rather praised recession as a way of cutting CO2 saying of the graph shown "if I had extended the graph it would have shown another dip".

While this lecture may do for frightening younger schoolchildren the Royal Phil is a society with a lot of very qualified members, moreso than me & I think are entitled to expect something more serious.


The Next "Enemy of the State" is Energy

By Alan Caruba

Waiting in the Senate is a Cap-and-Trade bill that would impose the largest tax on the use of energy the nation has ever seen. It lacks any scientific justification, based as it is on the fraud known as “global warming.”

The nation will not survive Cap-and-Trade and James M. Taylor, a Senior Fellow specializing in environmental policy at The Heartland Institute, a Chicago-based, non-profit, free market think tank has authored “The Cap & Trade Handbook” that explains why. It is a slim six pages. (On May 16-18, the Institute will sponsor the Fourth International Conference on Climate change.)

Cap-and-Trade seeks to impose restrictions on greenhouse gases in general and carbon dioxide (CO2) in particular. Taylor notes that “The portion of the Earth’s greenhouse gas envelope contributed by mankind is negligible, barely one-tenth of one percent of the total. Carbon dioxide is no more than four percent of the total greenhouse gas envelope. (Water is more than 90 percent, followed by methane and nitrous and sulfur oxides.) Of that four percent, mankind contributes a little more than three percent. Three percent of four percent is 0.12 percent.”

There is no proof whatever that CO2 or human activity plays any role in “global warming” and there is no proof whatever that “global warming” exists except a natural cycle based on the actions of the sun, the oceans, cloud cover, and other factors over which humans have no control, nor influence.

Moreover, the Earth has entered a new, natural cycle of cooling and its average temperatures have been declining since around 1995. Weather satellites all confirm this and it began to cause consternation among a small group of scientists who, under the aegis of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, deliberately perverted climate data in order to foist the “global warming” fraud on the world.

Since “global warming” is a fraud, Cap-and-Trade is a fraud.

The Obama administration, however, took power vowing to make war on the sources of energy on which the nation depends for its electrical power and transportation needs. Coal, which provides just over fifty percent of all electrical power, is high on their list. Huge national reserves of oil which provide gasoline and diesel for our transportation needs continue to be restricted despite talk of “energy independence.” Even natural gas is being subjected to efforts by the Environmental Protection Agency efforts to thwart extraction.

The Obama administration is five votes or less away from destroying the nation. As President Obama has said, “Electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.”

This is tantamount to treason.

As Taylor points out, “a 70% cut in carbon dioxide emissions would cause gasoline prices to rise 145%, electricity prices would rise 129%, and more than four million jobs would disappear. Average household income would fall by nearly $7,000 each and every year” if Cap-and-Trade is enacted. The bill calls for an 83% cut in emissions!

These projections are based on data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration and from the Congressional Budget office.


Gore loses the first 2 years of the climate bet to Armstrong’s scientific forecast

What if Mr. Gore had accepted Professor Armstrong’s proposed ten-year bet on climate change in 2007? Gore said that the temperature would go up while Armstrong predicted it would not change from the 2007 average. We assumed a relatively conservative prediction from Mr. Gore of a 0.03 degrees Centigrade increase per year: the central projection of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Over the years 2008 and 2009, Mr Gore’s forecast was closer than Professor Armstrong’s to the actual monthly temperature in only four of the 24 months. Put another way Mr Gore’s forecast was 0.26 degrees too warm in 2008 and 0.08 degrees in 2009, whereas Professor Armstrong’s was 0.23 degrees too warm in 2008 and 0.02 degrees to warm in 2009.

We use the University of Alabama at Huntsville’s satellite measure of the global lower atmosphere temperature anomaly as our actual temperature in order to avoid the problems identified by researchers and, more recently, the release of the “Climategate” emails, with the Hadley Centre series used by the IPCC.

Professor Armstrong said that one must be cautious about small samples. The amount of variability in annual temperature is high relative to the predicted change, so Armstrong said that he expects to lose in some years. As shown by a 150-year simulation of the bet, he said that he had only a bit better than 50% chance of winning a given year, but this jumps to nearly 70% for ten years. Armstrong said, “it is about as certain as one can be in forecasting that I would win if the bet were for 100 years, but I wanted to see what would happen, so I proposed only ten years.”

You can follow the bet on a monthly basis here at In addition you can see what one betting market expects to happen.



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 is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here


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