Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Another comment on the "correct" IPCC predicton
I ridiculed this yesterday as cherry picking but Vincent Gray, an IPCC reviewer, also has some thoughts below. He points out, inter alia, that the IPCC has actually ABANDONED the prediction concerned
Currently the world is awash with distortions and outright lies trying to boost the failure of Doha to railroad all of us to ruin our economies. This one relies on the fact that very few people have access to copies of the 1990 IPCC Report. It so happens that I have a copy of the Report in front of me. Let me quote from the Executive Summary which is on page xi
"Based on current model results we predict Under the IPCC Business As Usual (Scenario A) emissions of greenhouse gases, a rate of increase of global mean temperature during the next century of about 0.3§C per decade (with an uncertainty range of 0.2§C to 0.3§C per decade): this is greater than that seen over the past 10,000 years. This will result in a likely increase of global mean temperature of about 1§C above the present value by 2025 and 3§C before the end of the next century. The rise will not be steady because of the influence of other factors."
The "predictions* apply only to the year 1990. As I have said many times the IPCC ceased making "predictions" altogether after this. The 1990 Report had a Chapter headed "Validation of climate models". In the first draft of the next (1995) Report they also had such a Chapter. I commented that as no model had ever been validated, and no effort to do so is made, the term is inappropriate. So, the next draft changed the word "validate"to ‰valuate" no less than fifty times, and at the same time changed "predict"to "project"
This current paper shows how desperate they are. They cannot claim that current IPCC practise is capable of *predicting* any future climate, so they grub around in the past to try and pretend it can be done, when their circumstances and conditions were quite different.
There were four scenarios given in the 1990 report. All have been abandoned as unrealistic. Amongst other things, they all assumed that there would be no efforts to try and reduce greenhouse gases.
Then, all the models have changed and numerous extra greenhouse gases have been added. There is a generous uncertainty range and they cover themselves because of "the influence of other factors"
I still amaze myself that so many have confidence in their so-called "mean global temperature" It is simply not possible to measure the mean global temperature by any scientific means. The botch up that they use is based on a miscellaneous non representative, non standardised maximum and minimum actual measurements that are upwardly biased, subjected to multiple averaged, "faked"according the Climategate report by "Harry", subject to huge uncertainties which are never given honestly, and massaged to assist their absurd pretensions
In Doha, a big green rent-seeking machine
A couple of weeks ago the great global warming bandwagon coughed and spluttered to a halt in Doha, the latest stop on its never-ending world tour. The annual UN climate conference COP18 is no small affair. This is a bandwagon whose riders number in the thousands: motorcades of politicians, buses full of technocrats and policy wonks and jumbo-jets full of hippies travelling half way round the world, (ostensibly) to save the planet from the (allegedly) pressing problem of climate change
This is despite the fact that nobody seems able to point to any great problems caused by the modest warming of the globe at the end of the last century - with global flood and hurricane levels plumbing levels rarely seen in the historical record, global sea ice levels at around their long-term average, new research suggesting that claims of increased levels of drought have been overstated, oh yes, and a distinct absence of any warming - there has been precious little for the delegates to get alarmed about.
The lack of any unpleasant climate change impacts will no doubt have entered the conciousness of the delegates - not least when UKIP's Lord Monckton hijacked the conference microphone and pointedly explained some of these uncomfortable facts to them - but this knowledge will not have affected their thinking much. The ability of UN conference delegates to ignore empirical facts can at times border on the heroic.
A thick skin is necessary when there are millions of pounds of funding at stake. The vast majority of those present in Doha depend for their livelihood on the perception of global warming as an existential threat. Their jobs are quite simply going to disappear if they come up with the wrong answer about climate change. Any statement that comes out of the UN climate machine - the UNFCC, the COPs, UNEP or the IPCC - has to be seen through this prism. When did you ever hear a bureaucracy announce that it was no longer required?
So faced with a certain unwillingness by some delegations to take the unhinged policy steps that many at the conference advocated, but mindful of the need to keep the bandwagon rolling, COP18 did what UN conferences usually do, agreeing to take drastic (but unspecified) steps in coming years. This seems to have fooled few people, but fooling people is not really the game. Not rocking the boat is. So long as taxpayers continue to fund activist and technocrat alike, so long as there is a COP19 next year, and so long as politicians continue to play along with the charade, everyone is happy. Except the taxpayer, that is.
But while greens have been protecting their rents in Doha, the real action has been taking place in Blackpool. The news that the Bowland Shale, a humungous beast of a gas field under Lancashire, is actually 50 per cent bigger than previously thought, points clearly to a shale gas-dominated future for the UK. This is an outcome that should in theory please everyone since plentiful gas will unequivocally reduce carbon emissions as well as energy prices. But of course, in reality some parts of the climate debate will not be pleased at all, for the simple reason that the beast from Blackpool puts a fairly hefty spanner in the works of the big green rent-seeking machine. If gas gives you cheap energy and lower carbon emissions, why do you need windfarms? If anyone in DECC had any sense, an immediate halt would be called a halt to the Energy Bill right now.
In reality, however, there is little sign of anything changing. Politicians of all stripes, but particularly Lib Dems, are wary of the green lobby that was built up by Labour and that continues to operate within the civil service. Those who would speak out against the folly of the path we are on must watch their backs. So while new gas-fired power stations will be built and the lights will stay on, greens will be bought off by the continued expansion of the renewables programme. The costs will be astronomical - we are talking about a hundred-billion pound face-saving measure - but the big green rent-seeking machine will roll on.
Extreme weather & superstition
Ralph B. Alexander (Alexander is a a physicist)
Superstorm Sandy. Parching drought across North America. A scorching midsummer heat wave in the Midwest. All these weather extremes are telltale signs that CO2 causes climate change, according to global warmists.
Indeed, the global climate-change nomenklatura gathered last week in Doha, Qatar eagerly (if grimly) cited Typhoon Bopha, which had just wreaked carnage in the Philippines, as the latest proof.
But it's not. The link between extreme weather and global warming has as much scientific basis as the pagan rite of human sacrifice to ensure a good harvest.
Yes, the supposed connection between unusual weather events and global warming is often taken as self-evident.
It's even been propounded in scientific papers - but not persuasively. A recent paper from Goddard Institute for Space Science chief James Hansen, for example, was quickly debunked by climate scientists on both sides of the global-warming debate.
No, the main fodder for the claim is its repetition by climate amateurs, such as New York Times columnist Paul Krugman.
The fact is that anomalous weather events, such as hurricanes, heat waves, floods, droughts and killer tornadoes, show no long-term trend whatsoever over more than a century of reliable data. Weather extremes have occurred from time immemorial, long before industrialization boosted the CO2 level in the atmosphere.
For that matter, even if there had been an uptick in extreme weather, the claim that global warming's the cause would have to contend with the inconvenient truth that global temperatures haven't risen for the last decade or more.
Extremes are a natural part of our climate, which constantly changes and is rarely stable for extended periods. In fact, weather extremes are the "old normal," not a "new normal," as UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon proclaimed in Qatar.
Why can't so many rational, well-educated people understand this simple fact? The answer may be superstition.
Superstition, which is rooted in fear and thought to emanate from the reptilian portion of our brains, has been part of the human psyche ever since the emergence of self-awareness in early mankind. Since then, we humans have learned to speak, write, read and live together in comparative peace. But we're still superstitious.
Superstition about the weather in particular is hardly surprising, given the awesome power of nature. Witnessing storms, lightning and even the daily rising and setting of the sun surely induced fear and wonder in primitive cultures. The same fear and wonder are what warmists exploit today in linking weather extremes to global warming.
Scholars tell us that weather superstition often found expression in ritual human sacrifice. The Mayans, for instance, tossed victims into a limestone sinkhole to appease the rain god Chaac.
And it's only a few centuries since superstition over the climate led to intensive witch hunts and widespread executions, usually by burning, for witchcraft.
University of Chicago economist Emily Oster demonstrated in 2004 that the most active era of witchcraft trials in Europe coincided with the Little Ice Age. Since then, other researchers have argued that chilly weather may have precipitated the Salem witch trials in the 1690s - one of the coldest periods of that epoch.
It was widely believed during the late Middle Ages that witches were capable of controlling the weather with their magic powers, and thus cause storms that could destroy harvests and hobble food production.
Things aren't so different now. The same predisposition for superstition that caused medieval populations to fear and hunt witches can explain today's hysteria over extreme weather. The present temperature trend is a good example. Global warmists constantly ignore the trend, labeling the flattening or even slight decline in global temperatures since 2001 or earlier as a "hiatus."
Our obsession with weather extremes has reached such heights that it has become a knee-jerk reaction for climate-change alarmists to ascribe any unusual weather event at all to global warming. So they tell us that heat waves, floods, harsh winters, dust storms - even wildfires - are all the result of man-made CO2. But a check of records from, say, the 1930s or the 1950s, when the CO2 level was much lower than now, reveals that such events are nothing new.
Climate-change skeptics might be regarded as modern-day witches because they think that global warming comes from natural forces. However, it's superstitious alarmists, who believe that extreme weather originates in our CO2 emissions and who have a dread of impending disaster, who are really the witches.
Ignore the doom merchants, Britain should get fracking
It's green, it's cheap and it's plentiful! So why are opponents of shale gas making such a fuss?? -- says London Mayor Boris Johnson
If it were not so serious there would be something ludicrous about the reaction of the green lobby to the discovery of big shale gas reserves in this country. Here we are in the fifth year of a downturn. We have pensioners battling fuel poverty. We have energy firms jacking up their prices. We have real worries about security of energy supply - a new building like the Shard needs four times as much juice as the entire town of Colchester.
Our nukes are so high-maintenance that the cost of disposing of their spent fuel rods is put at about œ100 billion - more than the value of all the electricity they have produced since the Fifties. The hills and dales of Britain are being forested with white satanic mills, and yet the total contribution of wind power is still only about 0.4 per cent of Britain's needs. Wave power, solar power, biomass - their collective oomph wouldn't pull the skin off a rice pudding. We are prevented from putting in a new system of coal-fired power stations, since that would breach our commitments under Kyoto. We are therefore increasingly and humiliatingly dependent on Vladimir Putin's gas or on the atomic power of the French state.
And then in the region of Blackpool - as if by a miracle - we may have found the solution. The extraction of shale gas by hydraulic fracture, or fracking, seems an answer to the nation's prayers. There is loads of the stuff, apparently - about 1.3 trillion barrels; and if we could get it out we could power our toasters and dishwashers for the foreseeable future. By offering the hope of cheap electricity, fracking would make Britain once again competitive in sectors of industry - bauxite smelting springs to mind - where we have lost hope.
The extraction process alone would generate tens of thousands of jobs in parts of the country that desperately need them. And above all, the burning of gas to generate electricity is much, much cleaner - and produces less CO2 - than burning coal. What, as they say, is not to like?
In their mad denunciations of fracking, the Greens and the eco-warriors betray the mindset of people who cannot bear a piece of unadulterated good news. Beware this new technology, they wail. Do not tamper with the corsets of Gaia! Don't probe her loamy undergarments with so much as a finger - or else the goddess of the earth will erupt with seismic revenge. Dig out this shale gas, they warn, and our water will be poisoned and our children will be stunted and our cattle will be victims of terrible intestinal explosions. Yesterday the Observer found some political support for the gloomsters, in the form of a German MEP. His name is Jo Leinan, and it seems he is a prominent member of the Euro-parliament's energy committee. There were only two countries interested in this procedure, he said - Poland and Britain.
And according to Herr Leinan, neither of us knows what we are getting ourselves into. We are about to release the pent-up shale gas of Britain from its sinister cavities beneath Lancashire and Sussex, and anything can happen. Before we touch the integuments of the planet, he says, the European parliament will produce some regulations to "discipline" the operation.
Regulations? From the Euro-parliament? And these people wonder why we in Britain are increasingly determined to have a referendum on our membership of the EU. I am sure that the SPD politician means well, but just what in the name of hell has it got to do with him? Before he draws up any regulations for the British fracking market, he might care to look at what has been going on in America in the past four years, where the discovery of large quantities of shale gas is turning into one of the most significant political events since the end of the Cold War.
In 2008 the cost of natural gas in the US was $8 a unit. It is now $3 a unit. In China it is still up at $12 a unit - and the result is that the US is now competitive in industries such as fertilisers and chemicals that American politicians had long since assumed were lost to low-cost economies of the East. As a result of the use of gas, the Americans have cut their CO2 emissions to levels not seen since the Nineties, in spite of a growing population.
Indeed, the Americans have now actually met their obligations under the Kyoto protocol on climate change - and they never even signed up for it. The shale gas industry is a huge employer, and has so far contributed $50 billion in tax. As for the anxieties about water poisoning or a murrain on the cattle, there have been 125,000 fracks in the US, and not a single complaint to the Environmental Protection Agency.
It is no wonder that some of the more heroic spirits in the Coalition Government are saying that we should get our act together, and make use of what nature has bestowed on Lancashire and elsewhere. As soon as he became Environment Secretary, Owen Paterson announced that he was going to make life easy for potential frackers, with a one-stop permit system. He has the support of George Osborne, who hailed the potential of fracking in the Autumn Statement.
Alas, we are in a Coalition, and the Liberals run the Department of Energy and Climate Change. They have announced a moratorium on fracking, claiming that there have been earthquakes in the Blackpool area - even though there are tiny quakes every day. In what they thought was a cunning move, the Lib Dems also leaked the location of two big reserves of shale gas - in Tatton and Shropshire North. Much to his credit, Owen Paterson immediately announced that he was all in favour of fracking his constituency if it would deliver jobs and growth, and he is dead right. The shale gas discovery is hateful to the Libs and the Greens, because it destroys their narrative about the ever rising cost of hydrocarbons. It is glorious news for humanity. It doesn't need the subsidy of wind power. I don't know whether it will work in Britain, but we should get fracking right away.
Van Jones and Exxon Mobil Support a Carbon Tax
It's a bad omen for free enterprise, prosperity and liberty when normally warring special interest groups such as big business and progressive activists agree on public policy.
During President Obama's first term big business interests led by the pharmaceutical industry joined the union lobby in successfully making ObamaCare the law of the land.
Shortly after Obama's re-election, history may be repeating itself this time regarding energy policy.
While it's known that politics makes strange bedfellows none can be more bizarre than former White House green jobs czar Van Jones and Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson agreeing on a carbon tax.
Coincidentally, just ten days after the presidential election, Van Jones co-authored a commentary, "To end the fiscal showdown, tax carbon," and on the same day Bloomberg News wrote an article, "Carbon tax: Exxon backs Obama plan to impose climate change fees."
In the latter story an Exxon spokesperson said, "Combined with further advances in energy efficiency and new technologies spurred by market innovation, a well-designed carbon tax could play a significant role in addressing the challenge of rising emissions."
As we witnessed with ObamaCare, the key to progressive legislative victory is converting a powerful opponent to a potent ally.
Transforming Exxon into a lobbyist for the left-wing's war on fossil fuels is a huge coup for progressives and it's been years in the making.
After hammering Exxon as the enemy of the environment for more than a decade and the public relations headaches that it brings to the board room - the company was ripe for waving the white flag.
Exxon faced the full armada of the environmental advocacy complex. Activist shareholders and protests at the company's annual shareholder meetings were part of the advocacy targeting the company.
Activist groups also tracked Exxon's financial support for conservative public policy organizations that conflicted with their view that industrial activity is responsible for global warming.
In an effort to repair its public image and lower its public profile Exxon ended its financial support of many conservative organizations and the company went soft on its global warming position.
A carbon tax meets both Exxon's financial and public relations needs which also meshes with Obama's war on coal.
Since coal emits twice as much carbon dioxide than natural gas, coal would be preferentially harmed by a carbon tax and open the door for Exxon - the largest producer of natural gas in the U.S. - to fill the void for electricity generation.
Climate Tyranny Avoids Scrutiny?
By Alan Caruba
You likely did not read much, if anything, in the mainstream press about the climate change conference that was held in Doha, Qatar. The same applies to television and radio news. These are the folks who introduced the Kyoto Protocols in 1997 with the intention to reduce greenhouse gas emissions said to be causing global warming. The U.S. Senate unanimously rejected them in an exercise of good sense we don't always associate with that august body.
COP18, shorthand for the Conference of Parties, brought together under the aegis of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), was especially devious. Thanks to the Committee for A Constructive Tomorrow those of us keeping an eye on these charlatans, intent on transferring billions from developed nations to those that have failed to keep pace, we learned on December 8th that "The negotiations here in Doha have gone into overtime."
As reported by Craig Rucker, CFACT Executive Director, "After going until after 3 AM last night, negotiations resumed today. Negotiators have sprung a dangerous proposal on the conference at the 11th hour. This time they have inserted a `Loss & Damage Mechanism' into the final text which would require developed countries like the U.S. to pay poor nations for climate damages supposedly resulting from extreme weather events."
The conference ended on Friday and the last money grabbing gambit failed. It was time for the 7,000 "observers" and its delegates to go home, all knowing that even the Kyoto Protocols will end in 2014 and that COP18 was yet another monumental failure.
CFACT was founded in 1985 by Rucker and David Rothbard, both of whom believe strongly in the power of the market, combined with the applications of safe technologies, to offer practical solutions to many of the world's pressing concerns. They were soon joined by leading scientists, academics, and policy leaders, along with thousands of citizens from around the nation. CFACT has been especially watchful of the many "global warming", now "climate change", claims put forth by the IPCC, attending its conferences and reporting from them, as well as challenging the absurd claims made during them.
It is essential to understand that scientific literature shows no link between recent extreme weather events like Hurricane Sandy and the bogus global warming. Indeed, the planet has been in a natural cooling cycle for sixteen years.
As to the weather, the best definition I ever heard was that it is best described as "chaos."
Rucker reported that those controlling the COP18 "have instituted a `paperless' policy, depriving delegates of daily programs and copies of negotiating instruments that keep them relatively informed." The justification for this is the number of trees saved from becoming paper and, as of Saturday last, it was determined to be 217! As for the delegates' carbon footprint, this policy totally ignores the emissions from their jet travel, their five-star hotels and restaurants, air conditioning, limousines, and the carbon dioxide they are all exhaling.
The delegates, if they could, would impose carbon taxes nation-by-nation and globally, but Chip Knappenberger, a leading "skeptic", writing in MasterSource.org, asked "How much global warming will result from U.S. emissions over the course of this century and how much of that could be prevented by a carbon tax? These two questions have the same simple answer-virtually none. One or two tenths of a degree a century with or without a carbon tax makes the whole climate debate a peculiar exercise."
There have been periods in the Earth's history when there were far higher concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and the result was an abundance of vegetation. Lots of dinosaurs ate it and other dinosaurs ate them. There was an increase in CO2 during our present period on Earth that began when the last ice age ended about 11,500 years ago. The rise of agriculture allowed our ancestors to feed more and more humans and livestock, giving rise to the spread of civilization and it too contributed to an increase in CO2. Presumably, these are good things because increase of CO2 suggests that the next ice age has been delayed to some extent.
Meanwhile, back at COP18 what amounted to secret negotiations caused a lot of anger among delegates to the conference. Cathie Adams, president of the Texas Eagle Forum, at a CFACT press briefing told attendees that "in all her 17 years of attending U.N. climate gatherings there has never been this much difficulty getting up-to-date information or reluctance to accommodate informed public input into the process."
As of this writing, it is unknown what the official U.S. response will be to the effort to get developed nations to ship bundles of cash to any undeveloped nation experiencing a hurricane, a typhoon, a blizzard, or any other "climate event." In a cash-strapped nation about to "go over the fiscal cliff" did President Obama instruct U.S. delegates to go along with this absurd demand? Probably.
It is useful to know that Canada, Japan, and New Zealand have already rejected any participation in the agreements to come out of COP18.
One assumes that the European Union, as financially challenged as the U.S. and struggling under soaring renewable energy costs, would be of the same mind. Add to them China, Brazil, India, Indonesia and other emerging markets that need to grow their economies and which are dependent--like every other nation--on coal, oil, and natural gas. Mandatory reductions in greenhouse gas emissions would be the kiss of death.
The U.S. is about to undergo this madness in the form of a deluge of Environmental Protection Agency carbon dioxide regulations that will strangle the economy and kill jobs. Unless the Congress can eliminate them via legislation, it will constitute a form of national suicide.
The United Nations isn't just involved in climate treaties. It is seeking control over the worldwide Internet, the oceans of the world, gun control, and regulating the rights of parents to exercise control over their children's health and wellbeing.
If successful, the U.N. will lead the world back to a new Dark Ages.
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Posted by JR at 6:13 PM