Monday, July 09, 2012

Ignoramus Dyer is at it again

He is anti-Israel and compares climate skeptics to Nazis. His expertise is in military history but below he talks as if it were in climatology. He admits that "complex systems like the climate can produce strange local results" but uses a selection of strange local results as evidence for global warming!

Maybe he should go back to military history and try to answer why Britain has not produced an outstanding military general since the first Duke of Marlborough. Wellington and Monty both held their ends up but it was their allies who did most of the work

But even if Dyer came up with an answer to that I don't think I would give much heed to an answer from someone who says that global warming freezes Indians to death ("At least 300 people died in a cold wave in northern India in the previous January")

He really does sound like he has lost his marbles

It was 42° C in St. Louis, Missouri, last weekend, about the same as in Saudi Arabia. Along the U.S. Atlantic coast, it was cooler, but not much: 41° C in Washington, D.C., just short of the city’s all-time record. And 46 Americans are already dead from the heat wave.

In Britain, it was incredibly wet. Almost six centimetres of rain fell on July 7 in parts of southern England, and there were over 20 flood warnings and 100 flood alerts in effect. The wettest April ever was followed by the wettest June (more than double average rainfall), and July has started the same way.

Russia had its hottest summer ever in 2010, with peat wildfires raging out of control—over 5,000 excess deaths in Moscow in July alone—but this summer, it’s wet in Russia, too. On July 6, an astonishing 28 centimetres of of rain fell overnight in the Krasnodar region in southern Russia, and flash floods killed 155 people.

It is a big planet, and some local record for hottest, coldest, wettest, or driest is being broken somewhere or other almost every day. But these are records being broken over very large areas, in regions where records go back a long time.

As Krasnodar governor Alexander Tkachev said: "No-one can remember such floods in our history. There was nothing of the kind for the last 70 years."

There are very unusual events happening in winter too: last January only 14.7 percent of the United States was covered by snow, compared to 61.7 percent at the same time in 2011. At least 300 people died in a cold wave in northern India in the previous January.

One could go on, enumerating comparably extreme weather events in the southern hemisphere in the past couple of years. But that would just be more impressionistic evidence, and no more convincing statistically.

The events are too few, and the time period is too short. But it does feel like something is going on, doesn’t it?

The most recent opinion polls indicate that a majority even of Americans now accept that climate change is happening (although, being American, many of them still cling to the belief that it is a purely “natural” event that has nothing to do with human greenhouse-gas emissions). But opinion polls are not a good guide in these matters either. Can we really say that something serious is happening, and that it is evidence that the climate is changing now?

No, we can’t. It’s a statistical longshot, but it is possible that this is just a random collection of extreme events signifying nothing in particular. Occasionally a tossed coin comes up heads six times in a row. But usually it doesn’t.

The best way to approach the question is to ask what we would actually see if global warming had crossed some threshold and triggered big changes in weather patterns. The actual change in the average global temperature would be almost imperceptible: only one or two degrees C, or the difference in an average day’s temperature between 9 and 10.30 a.m. What we would notice is that the weather is getting wild.

We never really experience the climate; what we feel is the daily weather that it produces. A climate that is changing will produce unfamiliar weather—and if it is getting warmer, it will be more energetic weather. Wilder weather, if you like.

That means hotter, longer heat waves, and bigger storms that bring torrential rain and killer wind speeds. But it can also mean prolonged droughts as rainfall patterns change—and much more severe winters, like the “Snowmageddon” storm that hit Washington, D.C. in February 2010 and shut down the U.S. federal government for a week.

That last phenomenon confuses people who think colder winters prove that the climate isn’t getting warmer, but complex systems like the climate can produce strange local results. As an article by Charles H. Greene and Bruce C. Monger in a recent issue of Oceanography points out, the melting of the Arctic sea ice will cause colder winter weather in the temperate regions of the northern hemisphere.

“Since the dramatic decline of Arctic sea ice during summer 2007,” the authors point out, “severe winter weather outbreaks have periodically affected large parts of North America, Europe and East Asia. During the winter of 2011–12, an extended and deadly cold snap descended on central and eastern Europe in mid-January (with temperatures approaching -30 ° C)...By mid-February, the death toll had exceeded 550."

How does melting Arctic sea ice cause colder winters? Much of the solar heat absorbed by the ice-free parts of the Arctic Ocean in the summer is released into the air by evaporation in the autumn.

The higher atmospheric pressure in the Arctic weakens the Jet Stream, which allows cold Arctic air masses with a high moisture content to spill out into the middle latitudes.

Hence colder winters and more snow in the U.S., Europe and northern Asia.

You can’t prove that all this means we are sliding into a new and steadily worsening climate right now—that the long-threatened future has arrived. The statistics aren’t good enough to support that conclusion yet. But if you have to put your money down now, bet yes.


Growing rice in Texas?

Rice is a water intensive crop. Growing it in a region with erratic rainfall is crazy. Only politics props it up. There's no shortage of water in Texas -- just misuse of it

The punishing seven-year drought of the 1950s in Texas brought about the modern era of water planning. But the drought of 2011 was the hottest, driest 12 months on record there.

Though only a handful of towns saw their water sources dry up last summer, it got so bad that cities, industries and farmers began to think the unthinkable: Would they run out of water?

With the state's population expected to double by 2060, Texas must begin an expensive and politically charged search for new water sources. No other reservoir in Texas better symbolizes the state's competing demands for water than Lake Travis, nestled in the juniper-covered hills west of Austin.

Marina owners, a nuclear power plant, computer chip makers, rice farmers and the booming city of Austin all depend on Lake Travis and its upstream cousin, Lake Buchanan, for their existence.

Last summer, Lake Travis was nearly two-thirds empty. Today, the drought persists, and the lake is only half full.

Boat ramps lead to nowhere. Weeds encroach where bass used to swim. The views of million-dollar homes look out on boat docks sitting on a bed of dried mud.

Connie Ripley is a Texas homeowners activist. "A lot of people are trying to sell their properties because they're just fed up with Lake Travis," Ripley says. "I mean, we're looking in Colorado right now. It's just not worth the hassle of the lake going up and down and up and down constantly, when it could be managed better."

Ripley and other upstream water users are increasingly concerned over the fact that half of all managed water in Texas goes to agriculture. In the case of Lake Travis, 60 percent of the water released from the dam last year went to farmers 300 miles downstream.

"We had plenty of water last year at the beginning of the season. So the farmers got their water, and they just continued to take all the water they wanted," Ripley says.

That's not the case this year. In March, the Lower Colorado River Authority, the entity that manages this basin, asked the state for emergency authority to cut off water to the farmers, fearing there wouldn't be enough water for customers such as Austin.

The Franzen brothers raise cattle and rice in Matagorda County, down on the Texas coast, and they depend on the Colorado River to flood their rice fields.

Derril Franzen, in jeans and a cowboy hat, surveys an unplanted field of gray dirt. "It's the funniest feeling we've had in our life. It's the first year in the history of this ranch that's been producing rice since the early 1900s that we haven't had any water," Franzen says.


Canada's Inuit roar in protest over move to protect polar bears

They say animal rights activists put the species at more risk than hunters who regard it as central to their livelihood

Doomsday predictions of the polar bear's demise tend to draw an Inuit guffaw here in Nunavut, the remote Arctic territory where polar bears in some places outnumber people.

People will tell you about the polar bear that strode brazenly past the dump a month ago or the bear that attacked a dog team in the town of Arviat in November. Heart-rending pictures of polar bears clinging to tiny islands of ice elicit nothing but derision.

The move to protect polar bears is appreciated for one thing, however, and that's a hefty hike in the price for a dead one. Across Canada, prices for polar bear pelts have soared over the last few years, with two at a June 20 auction in Ontario fetching a record $16,500 each.

"Four years ago, we were lucky to get a thousand dollars for a 7-foot polar bear. Now, you can sell that 7-foot polar bear for between $3,500 and $4,000," said Frank Pokiak, chairman of the Inuvialuit Game Council in northwestern Canada.

The only country in the world that allows its polar bears to be shot and sold commercially on the international market, Canada — home to two-thirds of the remaining population — has reaped the benefits of the rest of the globe's concern for the bear. So have its native people. An estimated 77% of the world trade in polar bear parts in recent years came from about 500 bears a year killed in Canada, 300 of which typically enter the international market, according to a review by the Humane Society of the United States and Canadian officials.

Now U.S. conservation groups are pushing the U.S. to back an agreement that would ban most international trade in polar bear parts, with a move to upgrade the listing for the polar bear under the 175-nation Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species, known as CITES.

Forty-three Democrats from the House of Representatives signed a letter in June in favor of the upgrade. Further, the Center for Biological Diversity in January petitioned the U.S. Interior Department to initiate trade sanctions against Canada under the North American Free Trade Agreement, contending the nation is in violation of a 1973 treaty on conservation of polar bears.

"Not only is Canada home to two-thirds of the world's population of polar bears, but it's home to what is arguably the most important population of polar bears, because it's the population in Canada that scientists expect to persist the longest in the face of global warming," said Andrew Wetzler of the Natural Resources Defense Council, which is pushing for the trade ban.

Inuit leaders from Canada's far north are preparing to fight back, arguing that new international restrictions could wreck the region's fragile economy and possibly create even greater threats to the bears.

"For the world to suggest that we'll save the polar bears and forget the people, that's a little backwards," said Terry Audla, president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, which represents about 55,000 Inuit across Canada. He and most Canadian game management officials argue that Canada's polar bear quotas are set well within sustainable levels.

"The Inuit have always hunted the polar bear. It's in our best interest to ensure the population is healthy," Audla said. "But people have to have faith in us and work with us — to base things on facts, and not listen to these animal rights activists who are bending the truth."


Stop the presses! Michael Mann says that Warmists have predicted the present warm summer in parts of the USA

Of course they have. That's what Warmists do. It's the cold winters that they have never predicted. A valid scientific theory does not predict only half the events

As Washington, D.C., endures a record ninth straight day of near-triple-digit temperatures, it might be hard for the city’s residents to remember that just two years ago, when the capital was blanketed with record snowfall, Republican senator and noted climate change skeptic James Inhofe and his family were building an igloo on the national mall to mock former vice president and leading environmentalist Al Gore. That winter, Matt Drudge and Rush Limbaugh gleefully noted that a Senate conference on climate change had to be canceled due to snow.

Scientists and environmentalists pointed out at the time that a record snowfall is in no way inconsistent with a warming planet — in fact many models predict that heavy snow could become more common because a warmer atmosphere will hold more water vapor. But the larger point is that, as Jane Lubchenco, the head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), put it in 2010, “It is important that people recognize that weather is not the same thing as climate.” Large variations in temperature and humidity will occur even as global temperatures rise.

But in this record-breaking heat wave, it can sometimes seem like the weather-climate distinction is being lost on the other side. “This is what global warming looks like at the regional or personal level,” University of Arizona professor Jonathan Overpeck told the Associated Press of this summer’s heat waves, wildfires and brutal storms. The liberal news watchdog Media Matters has blasted outlets that fail to mention climate change in the coverage of the wildfires sweeping across western U.S. states. Some commentators have also attributed the “derecho” storm that left 23 dead and 1.4 million without power to climate change. The public might be forgiven for wondering if the mantra “weather is not climate” only applies when the weather is politically inconvenient for the person discussing it. So when is it OK to chalk up unusual weather conditions to climate change, and when is it just normal weird weather?

“It’s OK to talk about events when you discuss them in a proper scientific context,” says Michael Mann, director of the Earth Science Center at Penn State and creator of the famous “hockey stick” graph. “The climate models have predicted what we’ve now seen, which is a doubling in the rate at which we break all-time warmth records in the U.S. We’re breaking those records, over the past decade, at a rate of almost twice what we would expect from chance alone.”

In fact, more than 2,000 U.S. heat records were broken just in the past week. Climatologists argue that while there’s certainly nothing unexpected in periodic record-breaking temperatures, the rate at which these records are being broken year after year can’t be explained away by coincidence.

“There’s a randomness to weather, but what we’re seeing is loading of the weather dice to the point where sixes are coming up 10 times more often,” says Mann. “If you were gambling and you saw sixes coming up 10 times more often you’d start to notice. We are seeing climate change now in the statistical loading of these dice.”

Mann also notes with some satisfaction that the year after Inhofe’s igloo stunt, his home state of Oklahoma had the hottest month of any state in U.S. history, with an average temperature of 88.9 degrees in July 2011. The senator himself became ill after swimming in a lake that suffered from unexpected algae growth, likely due to the hotter temperatures.

But while the planet is undoubtedly getting warmer, attributing a particular weather phenomenon to this shift is a bit problematic. Although the science may be on the side of climate change, blaming one particular weather incident on global warming is just as misleading as saying that a cold winter disproves it.


Another false prophecy -- from a Warmist and a weather "expert"

Check out this prediction from last week on Jeff Master’s blog. The High Park fire will burn until winter

Here in High Park Fire land, we have had about 25% of our average annual rainfall – just during the last week. You couldn’t start a fire here if your life depended on it.

None of this has stopped Obama’s Department of The Interior from banning all shooting in Colorado and Wyoming. You never know when hot lead might strike flood water and spontaneously combust.


Joe Romm On The Super-Drought In The UK

Joe is an equal opportunity neurotic, and does not confine his moronic forecasts to the US. Who is paying this guy to be wrong about everything?
June was wettest since records began in 1910

You felt it in your bones, but now it’s official – it was the lousiest June ever.

The month just gone was the wettest June in the United Kingdom since rainfall records began in 1910, according to provisional Met Office figures released yesterday, but it wasn’t only very wet.

It was also very cold for the time of year, and it was also very dull, and in many parts of the country, the idea of Flaming June was no more than a fantasy.

During the month, the total UK rainfall was 145.3mm – exactly twice as much as you would normally expect compared to the 1971-2000 average of 72.6mm – and this figure beats the previous record of 136.2mm, set in the incredibly wet month of June 2007.

Looking at individual countries, it has been the wettest June on record for Wales and Northern Ireland, the second wettest in England, and the eighth wettest in Scotland.

Many areas have seen extremely high rainfall – with 83 out of 237 observation sites marking their wettest June on record, the Met Office said. Some of these are not significant as they have very short recording histories, but others have been operating much longer – Otterbourne in Hampshire has been operating for 119 years.


Scientists call for action to "save" coral reefs

There have been headlines in Australia like the one above for at least 50 years. Like all natural phenomena, nothing stays the same over time on the reef and there have always been attention-seekers trying to create panic over the changes they observe

Thousands of scientists have signed a statement calling for immediate action on climate change to save the world's remaining coral reefs. ["Remaining"? The Great Barrier reef is the biggest reef in the world and is as extensive and as diverse as ever. This call is plain dishonest]

MORE than 2500 marine researchers signed the consensus statement from the International Coral Reef Symposium in Cairns, which calls for global action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

The statement calls for action to prevent rising sea temperatures, ocean acidification [There is no acidification. There is a possible reduction in alkalinity but that is a long way from acidification], overfishing [Fishing is now banned in most of the reef area] and pollution from the land [Unproven theory].

"The international Coral Reef Science Community calls on all governments to ensure the future of coral reefs, through global action to reduce the emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, and via improved local protection of coral reefs," the statement says.

Professor Terry Hughes, convener of the symposium and director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, said Australia's Great Barrier Reef was a prime example of a reef in need of protection.

"Unfortunately in Queensland, the rush to get as much fossil fuel out of the ground as quickly as possible ... has pushed environmental concerns far into the background," he said.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) recently released a report that was highly critical of Australia's management of the Great Barrier Reef.

It said the reef could be listed as a World Heritage site in danger unless high-risk coastal developments including new ports in Queensland are shelved.



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


1 comment:

slktac said...

The BLM did NOT BAN ALL shooting in Wyoming and the blog writer is aware of this. Only specific types of ammunition was banned. This is what one would call "liberal journalism in reverse". Make up information and then go with it. Very, very BAD for anyone interested in actual facts and not fantasies that support the conclusion the writer wants. It appears war mists are not alone in fabricating information.