Sunday, March 27, 2011

Dr. Goebbels would be proud

New ad portrays GOP attack on EPA as assault on babies

So opposition to regulation of the gas we all breathe out is equivalent to feeding babies arsenic. There is no lie the Warmists will not sink to. But their entire case is built on dishonesty so we should not be too surprised. Global warming has long ceased to be a scientific debate. It is now just a Fascist lunge for power on the part of the Green/Left -- JR

With several key votes set for next week on the GOP’s ongoing assault on the Environmental Protection Agency, this new ad gives us a hint on how the left intends to respond — by portraying the GOP push as an assault on children.

The Senate is set to vote next week on a GOP proposal — strongly opposed by the White House — to revoke the E.P.A.’s authority to regulate greenhouse gasses. The new spot from American Family Voices, an organization that advocates for lower-income and middle-income families on economic, health care and consumer issues, goes directly for the heartstrings with images of babies and baby food jars, claiming the GOP initiative would endanger their lives:

The ad will run for a week on D.C. cable, suggesting the target audience is Beltway elites and that its goal is to frame the Dem response in Congress.

“The Clean Air Act prevented 160,000 early deaths last year, including 230 infants, yet Congress is busy working to prevent the EPA from updating and enforcing standards that would limit toxic pollutants that endanger the public health,” Mike Lux, President of American Family Voices, says. “If we don’t curb those pollutants, they’ll end up in our air, water and food and eventually in our children. Congress needs to let the EPA do its job to protect public health.”

Senate Democrats are plotting a strategic response to the GOP’s push. For instance, they may introduce an amendment that would exempt small industrial facilities and agricultural facilities from climate regulations, which would give moderate Dems in farm and heavy manufacturing states a way to go on record favoring curbs on EPA regulations without supporting the GOP’s drive to gut the EPA’s reglatory role completely.

But by and large, this fight is going to break down mostly along partisan lines, and this ad gives you a sense of how fraught the war over EPA’s fate could get.


Desperate Climate Scientists File Second Lawsuit Against Top Skeptic

Dr. Tim Ball received the second of two libel lawsuits from North Vancouver law firm of Roger D. McConchie on Friday (March 25, 2011). Global warming doomsaying professor Michael Mann files the latest writ.

Mann, the infamous creator of the now discredited ‘hockey stick’ graph was once the darling of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a tax hungry government funded organization that blames mankind for raising global temperatures by 0.7 degrees during the 20th Century. Now he is desperate to hit back at his critics with the help of Big Green's immense financial resources. Below we examine the shady background of Professor Mann and explain what Ball must do to defeat this latest legal challenge.

The IPCC plucked Mann from total obscurity after his problematic and “rushed” Ph.D was granted. His viva voce examination was in 1996 and he was required to make corrections. Such a two year delay suggests substantial errors and which would normally require a second viva, but this was strangely not recorded. Then, despite having no reputation as a researcher Mann was bizarrely appointed not only as an expert by the IPCC but as Lead Author for the 2001 Third Report.

Several fellow academics, including Dr. Judith Curry smelled something rotten among mendacious Mikey's tree rings and their fears were confirmed when Canadian statistical experts, Steve McIntyre and Professor Ross McKitrick found a string of ‘errors’ in Mann’s work. All the errors warped the wooden data in favor of the man-made global warming hype.

It transpired Mann and his secretive clique of climatologists who ‘pal reviewed’ his junk science benefited to the tune of millions of dollars in government research grants. Since the Climategate revelations public support for the IPCC has nose-dived as fast as this rascal's reputation.

Ball Breaker Gambit to Prevent Case Going to Trial

The dubious Penn. State professor now joins Andrew Weaver in using the Canadian law firm to sue Ball, an outspoken critic of the beleaguered global warming religion. The North Vancouver outfit is rumored to be a shill of the Suzuki Foundation. Ball, who is a retiree without corporate backing, may have been singled out simply because he has no deep-pocketed friends and thus may be forced to quit in the face of spiraling legal fees.

But if Suzuki and his paid shills were hoping this new tactic would splinter a spirited skeptic community it has backfired already.

Many of us fellow climate realists are concerned to get behind Tim and support him pro bono at this critical time. We are appalled at the way ‘Big Green’ has now abandoned all pretence of scientific argument and is going to try to gag skeptics in the courts.

To further assist in this crucial new phase of the climate wars, skeptics are helping Ball set up an official appeal so that the public can make financial donations to assist him in his crucial battle.

Chris Horner, lead attorney for the Competitive Enterprise Institute(CEI) has kindly agreed to give additional legal input as and when requested. Horner, himself, was also ludicrously threatened with a lawsuit by Mann just recently to reveal the follicly challenged fellow knows as little about law as he does scientific ethics. Mann’s writ claims Ball defamed him with this superb gag in a recent (February 9, 2011) statement: "Michael Mann should be in the State Pen not Penn. State."

Tim, like many principled scientists knows that corruption among scientists is actually quite common. According to official statistics 40 percent of scientists have witnessed such conduct but do not report it. Co-defendants in the action are Frontier Centre for Public Policy Inc. as publishers of the remarks.


More evidence that Climate Change is a fraud

There is supporting evidence that indicates that the Climate Change agenda is and always has been just a fraud. Why do we call it a fraud? An event now referred to as Climategate publicly began on November 19, 2009, when a whistle-blower leaked thousands of emails and documents central to a Freedom of Information request placed with the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom. This institution had played a central role in the “climate change” debate: its scientists, together with their international colleagues, quite literally put the “warming” into Global Warming: they were responsible for analyzing and collating the measurements of temperature from around the globe from the present to the distant past.

Dr. John Costello writes, “Climategate has shattered that myth (the myth of global warming). It gives us a peephole into the work of the scientists investigating possibly the most important issue ever to face mankind. Instead of seeing large collaborations of meticulous, careful, critical scientists, we instead see a small team of incompetent cowboys, abusing almost every aspect of the framework of science to build a fortress around their ‘old boys club’, to prevent real scientists from seeing the shambles of their research. Most people are aghast that this could have happened; and it is only because climate science exploded from a relatively tiny corner of academia into a hugely funded industry in a matter of mere years that the perpetrators were able to get away with it for so long.”

Stephen McIntyre, a University of Toronto mathematics graduate first questioned the accuracy of the "hockey stick" temperature graph mentioned previously. He wondered how Michael Mann, head of Penn State's Earth System Science Centre, reconstructed the temperatures to produce such a detailed graph. So he asked Mann for the data in an email and was stunned by his answer. Mann wrote he'd "forgotten" where the data set was but would get an assistant to find it. (Are you kidding me?)

Here is what was later found concerning the temperature data Mann used. Five organizations publish global temperature data. Two – Remote Sensing Systems (RSS) and the University of Alabama at Huntsville (UAH) – are satellite datasets. The three terrestrial institutions – NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center (NCDC), NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), and the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) – all depend on data supplied by ground stations via NOAA.

NOAA "weeded out" temperature stations showing cooling

Around 1990, NOAA began weeding out more than three-quarters of the climate measuring stations around the world. They might have been working under the direction of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). It can be shown that systematically and purposefully, country by country, they removed higher-latitude, higher-altitude and rural locations, all of which had a tendency to be cooler. The thermometers kept were near the tropics, the sea, and airports near bigger cities. These data were then used to determine the global average temperature and to initialize climate models.

From 1960 through 1980, there were more than 6000 stations providing temperature information. The NOAA reduced these to fewer than 1500. Calculating the average temperatures this way ensured that the mean global surface temperature for each month and year would show a false-positive temperature anomaly, a bogus warming trend. Interestingly, the very same stations that were deleted from the world climate network were retained for computing the average-temperature base periods, further increasing the bias towards warming.

EPA suppresses crucial criticism on political grounds

An internal study of the U.S. EPA completed by Dr. Alan Carlin and John Davidson concluded the IPCC was wrong about global warming. One statement in the executive summary stated that a 2009 paper found that the crucial assumption in the Greenhouse Climate Models (GCM) used by the IPCC concerning a strong positive feedback from water vapor is not supported by empirical evidence and that the feedback is actually negative. This is exactly our position, water vapor in the atmosphere causes a cooling effect, not a warming one.

EPA tried to bury the report. An email from Al McGartland, Office Director of EPA’s National Center for Environmental Economics (NCEE), to Dr. Alan Carlin, Senior Operations Research Analyst at NCEE, forbade him from speaking to anyone outside NCEE on endangerment issues. In a March 17 email from McGartland to Carlin, stated that he will not forward Carlin’s study. “The time for such discussion of fundamental issues has passed for this round. The administrator (Lisa Jackson) and the administration have decided to move forward on endangerment, and your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision. …. I can only see one impact of your comments given where we are in the process, and that would be a very negative impact on our office.” A second email from McGartland stated “I don’t want you to spend any additional EPA time on climate change.”

McGartland’s emails demonstrate that he was rejecting Dr. Carlin’s study because its conclusions ran counter to EPA’s proposed position. Yet this study had its basis in three prior reports by Carlin (two in 2007 and one in 2008) that were accepted (different administration). Another government cover-up, just what the United States does not need! The EPA acts at the behest of the Executive Branch but clearly after this it should be administered by the legislative branch.

Changing the radiosonde data to fit the theory

Further, Dr. Noor van Andel in January 2011 updated his paper, CO2 and Climate Change 26, and explains in detail how climate scientists adjusted radiosonde (weather balloon) data to try to bring it into agreement with their computer models to show greenhouse gas induced global warming. This is quite the opposite of the normal scientific procedure of adjusting the models to fit the data. The unadjusted data does not show the elusive "hot spot" (greenhouse gas signature) predicted by climate models and conventional 'greenhouse' theory.

I received the above article by email but have not as yet traced the author. Sounds like John Christy

EU blocks £160m dockside face-lift in Cornwall that would create 800 jobs... just to protect ALGAE on the seabed

A £160 million regeneration scheme would have created 800 much-needed jobs in a struggling town. But it has been blocked by an EU ruling – to protect algae on the sea bed.

A rare form of algae called Maerl is growing off the docks in Falmouth, Cornwall – but it cannot be moved or tampered with because the site is listed as a Special Area of Conservation.

Sir John Banham, a former chief of the Confederation of British Industry who is now leader of the local Enterprise Partnership, attacked the 'unaccountable bureaucrats' who have blocked the scheme. He said: 'They need to think very carefully about who they are working for and who pays their salaries.

'What I am expecting from them is to find solutions to the situation and not indulge in negative bureaucratic foot-dragging. 'We are in an era of austerity and we desperately need new jobs.' 'They need to wake up and smell the coffee. 'EU rulings can't take into account the impact on local lives.

The plans include dredging the Fal and Helford estuaries to accommodate larger ships and make the port deeper. But the Marine Management Organisation objected because of the EU directive. The MMO said Maerl can take up to 8,000 years to form and acted as a nursery for commercial fish stocks. Chief Executive James Cross said: 'Maerl is considered a non-renewable resource that cannot be lost.'

The Port of Falmouth Initiative has been in the pipeline since 2009 when a number of stakeholders convened in a bid to redevelop Falmouth's dockyard, where around 1,400 people currently work. An initial £106.5 million would be pumped into the scheme from a combination of public and private money, followed by £53 million over the next five years. The plans include an international harbour, offices, a 290 international marina and provide new super yacht workshops.

A Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant, which would create low carbon heat and electricity for the docks and town, is also planned.

To accommodate larger ships, a seven mile stretch of the Fal and Helford estuaries measuring 650ft wide would need to be dredged and the port deepened from 15ft to 27ft.

But the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) objected to the proposals because an EU directive prevents the area from being touched after it was declared a Special Area of Conservation in 2004 because of the Maerl algae.

Groups behind the bid - including Falmouth Harbour Commissioners, Cornwall Council, Falmouth Docks and Engineering Company and A&P Falmouth - are now in desperate talks with the MMO over a possible reversal of their decision.

David Ellis, chairman of Falmouth Harbour Commissioners said: 'There is a clear feeling from all the partners that this port will wither without the regeneration.. 'We're not just talking about the scheme benefiting Falmouth and the Penryn area. This will significantly improve the economy of Cornwall and turn Falmouth into a thriving gateway to the whole region. 'The entire future of Falmouth as a thriving port hinges on the ability to grow and develop.

'Negotiations are continuing with Natural England and the MMO to meet their concerns in a way that will protect the environment and move this project forward.' Chris Bell, group managing director at A&P Falmouth said: 'Dredging is needed because the channel into the docks is too shallow.

'Dredging is a vital link in the chain of industrial development of the area.' Peter Child, managing director of docks operator A&P Falmouth, said: 'If it doesn't happen you won't see a change in the next year or two, but there will be a gradual decline over five to ten years. 'If we got the approval tomorrow, there would be a gradual growth and you would hopefully see more ships, bigger ships and cruise liners.'


Diesel confusion in Britain

Owners of diesel cars face higher charges for annual parking permits in major cities amid growing concern over their effect on air quality. Councils have begun to raise the cost for the vehicles, which were previously considered more environmentally friendly because of lower carbon emissions. A motorist with a typical family diesel faces paying more than £150 a year to park outside his or her home.

There is growing concern in Whitehall over the green credentials of diesel vehicles, which are increasingly popular. According to a paper prepared for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs this month, they emit too many small polluting particles which damage local air quality, a particular problem in residential areas with heavy traffic.

The report said the Government should encourage “small, modern petrol vehicles, petrol hybrids and electric vehicles in urban areas in place of diesel vehicles”.

Diesels already account for one in four cars on the road, and four in 10 new cars. They are more fuel efficient and normally cost less to tax because of lower CO2 emissions.

But Tory-controlled Kensington and Chelsea council will impose a £15 surcharge on parking permits for them from next month and councils in other urban areas are likely to follow. The London borough’s most expensive parking permit will cost £176 and will apply to cars such as a three-litre diesel Range Rover. Owners of family cars, such as two-litre diesel Ford Mondeos, will have to find £153 a year.

Although the borough is thought to be the first to adopt a differential tax for diesel cars, other councils are understood to be monitoring the experiment closely.

The move is likely to be welcomed by environmentalists, but it has angered motoring groups. Diesel already costs up to 7p a litre more than unleaded petrol. Edmund King, the AA’s president, said: “Punishing someone for owning a diesel car that produces up to 20 per cent less CO2 than the petrol version is ludicrous. Councils are plundering residents’ parking for money to balance their budgets.”

Prof Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, added: “Provided diesel cars are properly maintained there is no problem.”

The move has parallels with higher charges for the most gas-guzzling vehicles. Richmond upon Thames became the first council to charge more for parking permits where cars have higher carbon emissions. Similar charges are becoming commonplace.

According to the Defra paper, diesel cars still emit as much nitrogen oxide and dioxide as they did 15 years ago. They have been linked to childhood asthma and other respiratory problems. A spokesman for Environmental Protection UK, a campaign group, said: “Local authorities in the most polluted urban locations must start encouraging residents to choose petrol over diesel. This could be achieved through simple measures such as differentiating between diesel and petrol vehicles for residents car parking charges.”

A spokesman for Kensington and Chelsea council said: “Historically, diesels, while better on CO2 emissions, have tended to be rather worse than petrol engines of similar size in relation to local air pollutants such as particulates and nitrogen dioxide. In Kensington and Chelsea there is a problem with local air quality.”


And the Beat-Down Goes On

Presidential candidate Barack Obama promised that his policies would cause electricity rates to “skyrocket” and “bankrupt” any company trying to build a coal-fired generating plant. This is one promise he and his ├╝ber-regulators are keeping.

President Obama energetically promotes wind and solar projects that require millions of acres of land and billions of dollars in subsidies, to generate expensive, intermittent electricity and create jobs that cost taxpayers upwards of $220,000 apiece – most of them in China.

His Interior Department is locking up more coal and petroleum prospects, via “wild lands” and other designations, and dragging its feet on issuing leases and drilling permits. Meanwhile, his Environmental Protection Agency is challenging shale gas drilling and fracking, and imposing draconian carbon dioxide emission rules, now that Congress and voters have rejected cap-tax-and-trade. That’s for starters.

The beat-down of hydrocarbon energy goes on. Oil, gas and coal provide 85% of the energy that keeps America humming, but the administration is doing all it can to take it out of our mix. American voters, consumers and workers may want more drilling, mining and use of hydrocarbons, to get the economy going again. But the administration has a different agenda.

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has unveiled another 946 pages of regulations that she claims will protect public health. The regs cover 84 “dangerous pollutants” that are already being scrubbed out of power plant emission streams by a host of innovative technologies. In fact, coal-fired generators now emit a fraction of what they did just 40 years ago.

The most frequently cited of these pollutants is mercury. Higher doses cause well-known ill-health effects, from severe neurological damage to brain damage and death. However, it has been all but eliminated in herbicides, light switches, thermometers and other products.

Its presence in coal and power plant emissions is likewise minimal and declining. The last serious cases of human health impacts from mercury poisoning in the US occurred decades ago – and coal-fired power plants remain the largest source of US-based manmade mercury only because other human sources are essentially gone.

Nevertheless, EPA and its anti-energy, anti-job allies like Climate Progress and Greenpeace are using mercury to spearhead their latest campaign against a fuel that provides half of all US electricity, and up to 95% in many manufacturing states. Even worse, they claim minorities somehow are especially at risk from mercury and other power plant pollutants. They even went so far as to hold a people-of-color-only press conference, to stir up fears and persuade minority interest groups to support the new regulations.

A few elemental facts put the alleged “dangers” power plant mercury emissions in perspective – which EPA and its fellow campaigners steadfastly refuse to do. They also illustrate how EPA abuses science, statistics and tax-funded “education” campaigns to promote needless public anxiety and expand its control over our lives, jobs and consumer choices, on a host of pollutants that pose little actual risk.

First and foremost, we are talking about a mere 41 tons of mercury per year. If that sounds like a lot, consider the following.

The United Nations Environment Program estimates that the cremation of human remains results in 26 tons of atmospheric mercury per year – from mercury-silver amalgams in teeth fillings.

China’s coal-fired power plants emit six times more mercury than their US counterparts, and power plants worldwide emit nearly twelve times as much, according to UN and other data. Since the atmosphere, jet streams and weather systems are global phenomena, all this mercury is mixed with US emissions, But even these manmade sources are dwarfed by natural sources.

According to the National Center for Atmospheric Research, forest fires in the Lower 48 States and Alaska annually put over 44 tons of mercury into the air. Root systems carry naturally occurring mercury from soils into their leaves and wood; forest fires release the mercury into the atmosphere and also “roast” it out of burned soils. (Maybe it’s time to ban forest fires – and wood-burning stoves.)

Recent studies by two Cambridge University scientists calculate that man and Mother Nature discharge up to 9100 tons of mercury into the global atmospheric every year. Most comes from volcanoes, but subsea vents (the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and elsewhere), geysers and forest fires also play major roles.

In other words, US power plants account for less than 0.5% of all the mercury in the air that we Americans breathe. Even eliminating every ounce of this mercury will do nothing about the other 99.5% of that pollutant in America’s atmosphere.

And yet EPA & Company demand that we do just that – at a cost of billions of dollars per year, to “protect” us from infinitesimal or imaginary risks.

Perhaps our helpful bureaucrats and activists could put a Plexiglass bubble over the entire United States, to keep those evil natural and Chinese gases out; plug Old Faithful and Kilauea; and keep people (especially minorities) away from Yellowstone National Park.

Add up everything EPA is doing to tax, obstruct and penalize coal use, and we are looking at huge increases in electricity prices. These skyrocketing prices will hammer family budgets, especially in minority communities, impairing nutrition and health, making it harder for many families to heat, cool and pay for their homes, and increasing illness and death.

Soaring energy prices will also force numerous companies to outsource manufacturing operations and jobs. Electricity is a major cost for factories, offices, stores, hospitals and schools. Every price hike hits them with another $10,000 to $1,000,000 or more in new annual expenses that they must pass on to consumers – or address by laying off more employees, whose families then suffer even more.

These hard realities must be viewed against 8.9% national, 11.6% Hispanic and 15.3% black joblessness. (These figures do not include people who have given up on finding a job, or have been forced to take part-time or temporary work.) EPA’s unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats are being completely disingenuous when they say their latest ten-pound stack of rules will bring one milligram of net benefit to human health and welfare, especially for minorities. EPA’s special “stakeholder briefing” on March 16 certainly conveys the correct image. Environmental activist groups are holding the stake that this rogue agency intends to pound through the heart of America’s economic recovery and civil rights progress.

EPA needs to start basing its policies and rules on science, reality, common sense, and comprehensive public health considerations. Congress needs to reassert its authority over EPA.

Both need to focus on responsible, science-based air and water quality standards that address real health and economic needs – and recognize that “human health and welfare” means more than eliminating every vestige of US manmade emissions, especially when we can do absolutely nothing about the vast majority of natural and manmade global emissions.

America – and our economic and civil rights progress – are waiting.



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: