Saturday, January 29, 2011

Hansen to give a "secret" lecture -- for initiates only

Maybe he is going to be even more extreme than he usually is. Or maybe he fears questioning. The following is an email just in from a UCLA alumnus:

I just got an email from the UCLA College of Letters and Sciences inviting me to attend a James Hansen "Research Lecture" on "Climate Sensitivity" on February 22, 2011, at the Ackerman Grand Ballroom, and a James Hansen "Public Lecture" on "Human-Made Climate Change: A Scientific, Moral and Legal Issue" on February 23, 2011, at the Covel Commons Grand Horizon Room.

Both these lectures will happen under the auspices of the "2011 Mautner Memorial Lecture Series at UCLA". It looks like both these events are invitation only - they want formal registration with registration ID numbers provided in the email announcements.

Global warming is not commonsense -- and it isn't global anyway

Or so a Warmist professor says below. Note that he gives a meteorological explanation for cold weather. Odd that Warmists never give a meteorological explanation for warm weather. And what is behind the meteorological events anyway? He does not know. He certainly does not consider that it might be the sun-driven onset of global cooling. He is blind to the possibility that what goes up might also come down -- as indeed it always has in the earth's climate record

The weather seems to be going berserk, with more snow dumped on our beleaguered Northeastern cities in a month than in a year, paralyzing business and our lives. Records are being broken even as we speak.

Common sense says that it's the freezing cold that is behind the freaky weather. But physics says otherwise.

Basically, snowstorms in this region arise from the collision of cold Arctic air from Canada moving south and bumping up against warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico, causing water vapor to condense and freeze and then form snowstorms, which travel up the Northeast corridor.

Among many factors, the amount of snow dumped is largely driven by the amount of moisture in humid air and not so much the temperature, and this seems to go against common sense. (For example, if we are making ice cubes, the amount of water in the ice tray, not the temperature, determines how much ice we can make. If we crank down the temperature dial in our freezer, this simply makes the ice freeze faster but does not increase the amount of ice produced.)

There is no single smoking gun that can point us to the origin of these monster snowstorms. But we can focus our attention on two likely culprits. The first is pure chance. There are many random fluctuations in the weather due to many diverse factors (for example, last year's weather was affected by El NiƱo).

But the second is global warming. This also seems to violate common sense, but realize that global warming can heat the oceans and generate more moisture, which in turn can drive larger storms. Last year was, in fact, tied with 2005 as the hottest year recorded since 1880, when precise measurements began.

However, some people may object, there are vastly different weather patterns around the world. But realize that global warming causes swings in the weather, not a uniform rise in world temperature.


Is It Really The Warmest Ever?

By Joseph D’Aleo

Both NOAA and NASA this month announced that 2010 was tied for the warmest year. The UK Climate Research Unit at East Anglia University proclaimed 2010 the second warmest year since 1850.

But after the incredibly cold and snowy winters in 2008/09 and 2009/10 and so far in 2010/11, those claims are falling on increasingly deaf ears. The public doubt about global warming has been increasing given the Climategate disclosures suggesting scientists have been ‘cooking the books’, especially when earlier promises of warm, snowless mid-latitude winters failed miserably.

Back on March 20, 2000, The Independent, a British newspaper, reported Dr. David Viner’s of the UK's Climate Research Unit warning that within a few years snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event.” Indeed, Viner opined, “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is.”

Similarly, David Parker, at the UK’s Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research, said that eventually British children could have only “virtual” experience of snow via movies and the Internet.

The last three winters in the UK were forecast by the UK Met Office to be mild and snowless. Instead, brutal cold and snow in the UK has the UK Met Office on their heels. Indeed the cold and snow was a throwback to the age of Dickens in the early 1800s. UK MPs called for Official Parliamentary Probe into whether the UKMO reliance on their ideology and CO2 models had biased their predictions.

In the United States, NOAA echoing the UN IPCC, claimed snow would retreat north with the storm tracks and major cities would get more rain and mild winters. The Union of Concerned Scientists said in 2004 scientists claim winters were becoming warmer and less snowy. In 2008, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. bemoaned that children would be robbed of the childhood joys of sledding and skiing in the DC area due to global warming. A year later, the area set a new seasonal snowfall record with 5 to 6 feet of snow and sleds and skis were the only way to get around.

The winter of 2009/10 was the coldest ever in parts of the southeast, and in parts of Siberia and the coldest since 1977/78 or 1962/63 in many parts of the United States, Europe and Asia.

The spirits of alarmists and their cheerleaders in the media were buoyed by the hot summer in the eastern United States and western Russia even though that is the normal result when a strong La Nina follows on the heels of a strong El Nino winter. But as is usually the case in La Ninas, global cooling usually follows within 6 months. Indeed, temperatures plunged as winter approached and this past December (2010) was the second coldest in the entire Central England Temperature record extending back to 1659. It was the coldest ever December in diverse locations like Ireland, Sweden, and Florida.

Reluctantly, alarmists and their cheerleaders in the media changed their tune and the promise of warm and snowless winters with ‘global warming’ morphed into global warming means cold and snowy winters. ABC News even said cold and snowy winters would be the new norm because of global warming. Non sequiturs like that have sadly become ‘the new norm’ in the wacky world of the mainstream media.

In Australia, the government’s Bureau of Meteorology and university alarmist scientists promised major drought and blocked dams and flood mitigation projects, but when devastating floods occurred this summer, they blamed that on global warming and again enviros and government agencies escaped the blame. Other scientists had warned that changes in the Pacific would lead to a return of the flood years like 1974, but they were ignored by agenda driven, green leaning government.

In fact environmentalists and alarmist scientists have reinvented global warming and now attribute all weather to global warming – cold, warm, drought and flood. They call it ‘climate disruption’. But the climate has not been cooperating in a way that is convincing the public they have to sacrifice even more to stop a problem they don’t sense is real. Just imagine if they knew how much they really would cost (trillions – several thousands of dollars per year per family) and how little these deep sacrifices would change the climate (not measureable).

Despite claims to the contrary, in recent years, global temperatures stopped warming. Even Phil Jones of the UK Climate Research Unit after Climategate admitted there has been no statistically significant warming since 1995 (15 years) and between 2002 and 2009, the global temperatures had declined 0.12C (0.22F).

To try and stop the bleeding, NOAA and NASA took steps to reduce or eliminate the cooling.

This aggravated what already was an already a bad situation. CRU data base programmer Ian ‘Harry’ Harris’s frustrated rants in his Climategate log were eye-opening:

“[The] hopeless state of their (CRU) data base. No uniform data integrity, it’s just a catalogue of issues that continues to grow as they’re found...There are hundreds if not thousands of pairs of dummy stations…and duplicates… Aarrggghhh! There truly is no end in sight. This whole project is SUCH A MESS. No wonder I needed therapy!!”

Furthermore, in a candid interview on the BBC, CRU’s Director Phil Jones admitted his “surface temperature data are in such disarray they probably cannot be verified or replicated”.

So should we avoid CRU and focus on NOAA and NASA. The answer is an unequivocal no.

In a Climategate email, Phil Jones acknowledges that CRU mirrors the NOAA data. “Almost all the data we have in the CRU archive is exactly the same as in the Global Historical Climatology Network (GHCN) archive used by the NOAA National Climatic Data Center.” And NASA uses NOAA data applying their own adjustments. All three data bases suffer from the same flaws.

All have managed to extract a warming trend from data that suggests cyclical changes and little long term trend. See how the three data centers working off the same data have reconstructed the global temperature history. NASA in green show the warmest anomalies, CRU generally the lowest. Part of this is the base period for computing averages (NASA uses the cold 1951 to 1980 30 year period for normals, CRU 1961 to 1990 and NOAA the entire period of record.

All show a warming period from the 1920s to early 1940s, a cooling from the 1940s to 1970s another warming from late 1970s to around 1998, and then as Jones noted a flattening. The warming early in the century before the industrial boom was very similar to that from 1978 to 1998. The cooling post WWII was during the post war boom.

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

Britons going cold on global warming: Number of climate change sceptics doubles in four years

The number of climate change sceptics has almost doubled in four years, official research showed yesterday. A quarter of Britons are unconvinced that the world is warming following successive freezing winters and a series of scandals over the credibility of climate science.

The figures suggest that a growing proportion of the public do not share the belief of all three major political parties and Whitehall – that climate change is a major and urgent challenge requiring radical and expensive policies.

The survey, carried out by the Office for National Statistics, has plotted levels of acceptance of the theory of man-made global warming since 2006. In that year it found that 87 per cent of people were at least ‘fairly convinced’ that climate change was happening. Last year that share had dropped to 75 per cent. Numbers who say they are unconvinced went up from 12 to 23 per cent.

The erosion of the public consensus behind global warming coincided with the ‘Climategate’ fiasco which came after damaging e-mails from the University of East Anglia were leaked in November 2009, and the arrival of another cold winter.

There were also setbacks for climate change advocates over flaws in UN reports on global warming and evidence that temperatures across the world have been falling.

The proportion of those who said they were ‘not very concerned’ about global warming now includes more than one in five.

The latest polling, carried out in August last year, came before the arrival of another big freeze.

There is also an increasing reluctance to take personal steps to tackle climate change. Fewer than half those polled – 46 per cent – are ready to use their cars less, and only 47 per cent are prepared to take public transport more often. Fewer than a quarter – 23 per cent – are willing to fly less.


Browner Resignation, Obama Omission Could Spell the End of Global Warming Policy, Say Climate Change Analysts

The abrupt resignation of Carol Browner, President Barack Obama’s global warming czar, and the omission by Obama of global warming from his State of the Union speech on Tuesday could mean that the White House has given up on global warming, according to climate change analysts.

Browner, who announced her resignation Tuesday, led the White House effort to enact global warming legislation and policy. A former director of the Environmental Protection Agency during the Clinton administration, Browner was well regarded in the environmentalist community and served officially as director of the White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy.

In his State of the Union address on Tuesday, Obama left out any reference to global warming or the more ambiguously named climate change, seemingly abandoning what had been one of the most prominent policy areas of the past two years.

Browner’s signature legislative goal – cap and trade legislation – failed in Congress last year when it was not brought up for a vote in the Senate after narrowly passing in the House.

Most recently, Browner was rumored to be in the running to replace Rahm Emanuel as White House chief of staff. Instead of Browner, Obama chose former J.P Morgan Chase executive William Daley. proprietor Marc Morano told that Browner’s departure was likely a sign of frustration with Obama and the president’s lack of attention to her signature issues.
“She’s probably frustrated with Obama’s lack of commitment on this issue,” Morano said. “I think Carol Browner is frustrated because she realizes Obama is not the man she thought he was when it comes to global warming.”

“Obama is terrified of the issue – it’s never been more than a check-box issue for him – so she was basically reduced to not doing that much of anything and she realized that nothing was going to happen,” he said.

Morano also said that Browner probably read the writing on the wall following the November election that swept a wave of conservative Republicans into Congress, effectively making any new environmental legislation all but impossible. “I think she realizes that her hands may be tied,” Morano said. “She [probably] doesn’t feel like she can be as effective as she wants to. She is a hardcore, committed greenie [environmentalist].”

Morano said that Obama’s omission of global warming from his State of the Union indicated that he would be “running” away from the issue in 2012 because it has become politically unpopular... “The new political expediency is skepticism,” he said. “Man-made global warming is the new butt of jokes in Washington.”

Myron Ebell, director of Energy and Global Warming Policy at the free-market Competitive Enterprise Institute, said it was “hard to say” why Browner left, citing her rumored loss of the chief of staff position.

Ebell said that her departure and Obama’s omitting global warming from his speech may indicate that the administration was merely putting global warming policy on the back burner, preferring a stealthier approach. “It may be that the White House decided, well, we’re off global warming and she’s the point person on global warming so she no longer has a role here,” he said.

“Remember that when Obama acknowledged this fall that cap and trade was not going to be enacted he said that – and this is pretty close to an exact quote – that there’s more than one way to skin that cat,” said Ebell. “And I think what they’re doing is they are adopting a lower-profile policy, a set of policies, to achieve the same goals without ever mentioning global warming or cap and trade or anything that will allow us to refer back to candidate Obama’s comment [to the editorial board of the San Francisco Chronicle] when he was senator that ‘under my cap and trade plan electric rates will necessarily skyrocket.’”

“They still want that, they just want to achieve it in a way that the public will have a much harder time seeing and therefore opposing,” said Ebell.


Brazil approves clearing of Amazon forest to make way for controversial dam

No! no! Not one fraction of the sacred Amazon, say Greenies everywhere

Brazil's environmental agency has approved the clearing of nearly 600 acres of Amazon forest so that work can begin on a controversial hydroelectric dam. The Belo Monte dam, which will be the third-largest such project in the world, has been strongly opposed by environmental campaigners and indigenous people who face being displaced.

Last year James Cameron, the film director, compared the plans to the plot of his box office hit Avatar, in which the Na'vi race fight to protect their planet from outside forces seeking to extract resources.

Ibama, the Brazilian environment agency, said on its website that it has approved the clearing of 588 acres (238 hectares) of forest at the site where the dam will be built in the state of Para.

It also said that Norte Energia, the consortium that won the bidding to construct the dam, can begin building roads to reach the remote site on the Xingu River, a tributary to the Amazon.

Contracts for the dam - which the government expects to cost nearly £10bn - were finally signed last August after decades of disputes about plans for a dam in the area and a series of court injunctions.

But several potential legal hurdles remain, with licences still to be granted for the actual building of the plant, which the government wants to see completed by 2015.

The 3.7 mile wide dam will lead to around 190 square miles of land being flooded. Environmental groups have warned that this could displace tens of thousands of people and threaten the survival of indigenous groups in the area.

But Brazil's government has been determined to press ahead with Belo Monte, which is crucial to efforts to keep up with rising demand for energy as the country's rapid economic growth continues.

Ministers have also defended the scheme as a source of clean and renewable energy and Edison Lobao, the Energy Minister, has referred to it as "the jewel in the crown."


Hybrid cars are not about fuel economy

They are about making things difficult for people, in the usual Greenie way. Diesels do all that hybrids do and more -- so they are largely banned in the USA!

I’ve mentioned the little Suzuki Swift Turbo Inter-cooled Diesel Before, this is a prime example of the auto that MIT said would likely rule the road as per efficiency through the year 2040. Nothing on the drawing board comes close to the compression ignition engine which delivers far more work for the energy dollar.

At 61.4 MPG, and with performance auto enthusiasts are giddy over, you can travel 30,000 miles for the same money it cost to purchase and install the optional 240 VAC home charger for the Chevy Volt! When you consider that the inner city crowd make up the majority of folks attracted to the Chevy Volt, and the limited amount of miles they drive, the cost of the Volt home battery charger and installation could pay for all the fuel the Suzuki might use over the average period of ownership for this group of drivers. This is based on $3 a gallon fuel cost, and the information I found on the GM Chevy Volt forum. The optional charger allows you to charge the battery in as little as four hours, the 120 volt charger system won’t cut it for most drivers.

Of course your friends who are all excited by the Chevy Volt will think this Zuk is a stinker! Nothing could be further from the truth, read the article here

The only thing that stands between us and the People’s Car is the EPA. There’s a new conspiracy theory I heard… was it out of wikileaks? It’s reported that American Big Oil bribed top officials at the EPA in order to keep the super high efficiency vehicles out of the Country….. Ralph Nader Killed the Corvair, and now this… when will the corruption end? When will the American public be able to own the cars they want?

As I look at the hybrids and think about the advantages we might all visualize in stop and go traffic, my thoughts are interruped by reality.. I think of all the days here that it’s so wet, the windshield wipers on, the heater and defrosters going to keep a safe view of the road in all directions, and other reasons the power consumption is high. About the time these conditions let up, it’s too hot, the AC is on as we watch the heat waves rise from the hot asphalt. But there’s more to think about. In EV mode, we might charge batteries off the grid, but what kind of losses have we then inserted between the distant prime mover and the rear wheels of our Car? What investment will it take to assure the grid can handle the charge current of all these EVs?

Some will note, compression ignition engines run cool while idling, it’s a sign of their far better efficiency, and under realistic conditions, and over a reasonable periods of time, it’s going to be very difficult for the EVs to deliver cost per mile at less cost than a diesel like the Zuk. I say the Volt doesn’t have a chance. History will tell. The Zuk Diesel is my choice for ‘Car of the Year’

OK, OK, I can hear it now..some will say.. ”you don’t understand, the Volt is no People’s car, there’s more luxury here, it’s a step up from your diesel Zuk” my reply… “Then why are all Americans forced to subsidize it, let the wealthier people buy their own Volt”.



For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, 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


No comments: