Friday, February 01, 2013

Single graph demonstrates man-made CO2 is not the driver of global warming

Plot for yourself here a single graph that simultaneously demonstrates the clear observational evidence that

*  temperature drives CO2
*  CO2 does not drive temperature

*  man is not the cause of the rise in CO2 levels

The effect follows the cause; the cause does not follow the effect. Short-term global temperature changes precede CO2 levels by about 1 year as shown by observations, and by 800+ years in ice core data.

Global temperature anomaly shown in green, CO2 levels in red

Ice core data also shows temperature changes precede CO2 changes by 800+ years.


Unofficial forecaster got recent Australian long-range weather forecast  pretty right

Hayden Walker is the succesor to Lennox Walker who was in turn successor to the famous Inigo Jones, who was condemned as "unscientific" for his emphasis on solar activity as an influence on weather.  He made good long-range forecasts, however.  Farmers planned their planting and harvesting by him.  They did not expect him to get the day right but getting the week or even the month  right was still very valuable to them.  

In the light of the week of sub-cyclonic weather that North Queensland has just had  -- and which reached into Southern Queensland for a few days --  Walker would seem to have got close  to reality.  The forecasts below were reported on Nov. 20, 2012 and seem pretty right as of 30 January, 2013.

In the rest of the article excerpted below, none of the official forecasters even tried to make long-range predictions.  More on Inigo Jones here

Brace for summer of wild weather, says forecaster

Fourth generation long-range weather forecaster Hayden Walker said the Coast would experience more storm and rain activity for the rest of November, before the weather tapered off in December and January.

"For the start of 2013, the forecast is for good to heavy rain in January," Mr Walker said.  "It won't be as substantial as some years.

"We've seen in the last two to three years an increase in sunspot and solar activity - it intensifies the heavy rain and flooding."

Mr Walker said while the weekend's storm activity had broken the heat, the rest of spring and summer would be "humid and uncomfortable".

Despite cyclones being predicted for south-east Queensland this summer, Mr Walker believed cyclonic activity would be confined to northern Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia.


Warmists stack the deck

In one of the most memorable scenes in the classic movie, The Sting, grifter Henry Gondorff (Paul Newman) cheats crime boss Doyle Lonnegan (Robert Shaw) out of $15,000 in a card game  by secretly switching four jacks into his hand in place of the cards that were dealt him. This scene, in which Lonnegan knows he was cheated but can’t prove it in front of the other players, sets the stage for the entire second half of the film.

I have always loved The Sting, and the crooked card game has always been my favorite scene. Nevertheless, something always bothered me about the memorable scene; it wasn’t very believable. After all, how could Gondorff be certain none of the other players had been dealt a jack, which would result in Gondorff’s instant death if one of the other players called Gondorff out on it? Indeed, how could Gondorff be sure Lonnegan himself didn’t hold at least one jack, which would give Gondorff enough of an excuse in front of the others to kill Gondorff for cheating? Would Gondorff really risk his own life on the unlikely event that nobody else in the hand had been dealt a jack? In short, the scene was long on Hollywood entertainment but short on believability.

This scene came to mind earlier this month when the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) released its National Climate Assessment draft report. In an all-too-predictable plot, USGCRP’s government money-funded senior scientists claim global warming is doing to America what the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man did to downtown Manhattan , and only an avalanche of more government funding and big government programs can save the day.

The part of the draft report that reminded me of The Sting (even more than the report reminded me of Ghostbusters) was the listing of the senior scientists steering the draft report’s conclusions. While the crooked card game scene in The Sting stretched the limits of Hollywood believability, the list of senior scientists steering the USGCRP draft report stretches the limits “objective” public policy believability.

As investigative journalist Donna Laframboise reports, most of the 13 senior scientists controlling the draft report are prominently associated with environmental activist groups. These are the folks putting together an “objective” assessment of global warming and government policy recommendations.

Let’s review the background of seven of the 13 senior scientists:

*    Chair of the report Jerry Melillo is a contributing author for the Union of Concerned Scientists.

*    Vice Chair Gary Yohe is part of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Climate Witness Program.

*   Richard Moss is a former vice president for WWF.

*    James Buizer is on the Board of Directors of the environmental activist group Second Nature.

*    Susanne Moser is a former staff scientist for the Union of Concerned Scientists.

*    Andrew Rosenberg is a director for the Union of Concerned Scientists.

*    Donald Weubbles is an author for the Union of Concerned Scientists.

That makes seven of the 13 people charged with putting together what is supposed to be our government’s objective assessment on climate change having deep and undeniable ties with environmental activist groups. And we are supposed to take this report seriously?

Folks, you can’t just make this stuff up! If I was looking at two Hollywood movie scripts and one contained the crooked card game scene from The Sting and the other contained the crooked scientist list from the USGCRP draft report, I would say the crooked card game scene is the much more believable of the two. Heck, I would fear the crooked scientist list from the USGCRP draft report would get laughed right out of the movie theater.

Sadly, this isn’t the first time government funding has put together a farcical group of agenda-driven activists and passed it off as authoritative science. As I documented two years ago, the list of authors for the National Academy of Sciences’ America’s Climate Choices report also failed the laugh test.

Amazingly – or not – the media failed to report the blatant bias and pitiful lack of scientific expertise on the National Academy of Sciences panel. Heck, I bet the media over the years covered the crooked card game in The Sting more than they covered the pathetic lineup of authors for the NAS report.


 "Green" cars lose London concessions

So-called eco-friendly cars are facing a crackdown in London after a scheme to encourage motorists to switch to ‘greener’ alternatives has started to make air more toxic.

Transport for London is to remove the Congestion Charge exemption for diesels and some Hybrids because soaring sales has increased pollution and traffic.

Diesels now account for one in two sales, but emit 22 times more soot particulates than petrol cars.

The U-Turn has provoked an outcry from motoring organisations, who accused authorities of moving the ‘green goalposts’.  And the move is also expected to cause anger among motorists who bought their cars to take advantage of the exemption.

Edmund King, AA president, told the Evening Standard: ‘We do have real concerns about “green goalposts” being moved after drivers and businesses have invested in low-emission hybrid and diesel vehicles. We need to encourage the take-up of a range of greener vehicles.’

More than 50 ‘green’ models, which includes the petrol/electric Toyota Prius — a favourite among environmentally conscious drivers  - will no longer be exempt from the £10 charge.

The move will come into force in July if approved by Boris Johnson.

It is understood the changes to the pricing will generate up to an extra £2 million a year.  The additional revenue will go some way to plugging the £60 million lost since the abandoning the Congestion Charge’s western extension.

About 70,000 motorists a day enter the congestion zone, with 2,500 qualifying for Transport for London’s Greener Vehicle Discount because they emit less than 100g/km of greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.  TfL wants to scrap this limit and replace it with a much tougher 75g/km maximum in a new scheme — which effectively rules out all hybrid and diesel vehicles now on the road.

David Bizley, the RAC’s technical director, said that only pure electric cars are likely to meet those new rigorous pollution restrictions.

Applications for the Greener Vehicle Discount would cease to be accepted from July. But drivers already registered would continue to qualify for the exemption until June 2015.

TfL, which made a £136.8 million net profit from the congestion charge in 2011/12, believes the existing system ‘creates an incentive’ for owners of hybrid and diesel cars to enter the zone.

It fears the number could more than double to 6,000 ‘free’ cars a day by the end of this year.

The new rules would sit alongside a £10 increase in penalty fines — taking them to £130 — and the closure of C-charge payment points in shops and petrol stations.  These changes would generate a further £2.5 million a year.


Extinction of millions of species 'greatly exaggerated'

Reports of the extinction of millions of species on Earth have been greatly exaggerated, a team of scientists has said.
Extinction of millions of species 'greatly exaggerated'

In the past scientists have warned that up to five per cent of species are at risk of dying-out as a result of climate change, deforestation and development.

But a new analysis by the University of New Zealand found that this figure was five times greater than reality because the number of animals living in the wild in the first place had been over estimated.

This meant that conservationists assumed that rates of decline were much faster, as they were starting from a higher point.

In fact the rate of extinction is much slower, with just one per cent of animals in danger of dying out globally.

Writer Mark Twain famously responded to the news that his obituary had appeared in the New York Journal by saying: "The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated."

Writing in the journal Science, the researchers calculate that there are around five million species of plants and animals on Earth, of which 1.5 million have been named.

This is far fewer than some other estimates, which put the figure as high as 100 million.

If a habitat is thought to contain more animals than it does, this can easily lead to a mistaken idea of how quickly they are disappearing.

Finding 500 members of a species in a population estimated to top 1,000 would indicate a more than 50 per cent decline.

But if the population was actually 500 in the first place, the loss rate falls to zero.

Professor Mark Costello, from the University of Auckland in New Zealand, said that globally, around one per cent of species are likely to be vanishing per decade rather than the five per cent figure some experts have proposed.

"Our findings are potentially good news for the conservation of global biodiversity," said lead scientist

"Over-estimates of the number of species on Earth are self-defeating because they can make attempts to discover and conserve biodiversity appear to be hopeless," he said.

"Our work suggests that this is far from the case.

"We believe that with just a modest increase in effort in taxonomy and conservation, most species could be discovered and protected from extinction."

Co-author Professor Nigel Stork, from Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia, said: "Surprisingly, few species have gone extinct, to our knowledge.

"Of course, there will have been some species which have disappeared without being recorded, but not many we think."

One of the greatest fears of conservationists has been that many species will die out before they have even been discovered.

Despite their reassurances about the plight of life on Earth, the scientists said there was no room for complacency.

"Climate change will dramatically change species survival rates, particularly when you factor in other drivers such as over-hunting and habitat loss," said Prof Stork.

"At this stage we have no way of knowing by how much extinction rates may escalate.

"But once global warming exceeds the two degrees barrier, we can expect to see the scale of loss many people already believe is happening.

"Higher temperature rises coupled with other environmental impacts will lead to mass extinctions."


Conservative-led Australian State to continue with its gas plan

THE NSW state government will push ahead with the expansion of the state's Coal Seam Gas industry despite increasingly organised opposition from green groups, home owners and farmers.

Resources and Energy Minister Chris Hartcher told The Sunday Telegraph there would be "catastrophic consequences" if NSW did not develop its own supply of secure and cheap gas.

Gas supplies would begin to run dry as early as 2014 and prices are already set to soar, he said, with predictions they could double within five years without further development.

Mr Hartcher said for too long green groups with an anti-mining agenda had been allowed to spread misinformation and stir up fear in the community without being properly held to account by the government or industry.

The Minister said the state was already losing manufacturing businesses that were concerned about gas prices and supply. Australian company Incitec Pivot has decided to build an ammonia plant in Louisiana, US, rather than Newcastle, because of concerns over the prospect of the soaring price of gas. This has cost the city hundreds of jobs.

"The real problem is going to be the customers who are dependent on gas. One-third of all the state's energy needs come from gas," he said.

"It really is fundamental to not only the economy but the lifestyle of the whole state."

Mr Hartcher said the Greens had been allowed to "just stand up with great confidence and assert things as facts".

"They are determined to change our energy to solar and wind and destroy gas as an alternative," he said. "Well, people can have these forms of energy, but they will have to be prepared to pay more than ten times what they do now."

The recently released Infrastructure NSW report said exploitation of the state's vast coal seam gas deposits would be "game changing" allowing the state to re-energise its manufacturing industry.

"There are two million gas extraction wells throughout the world now, and it's difficult for the anti-gas protesters to point to one that is causing problems," he said.

"The challenge for them is to find a single example where the water has been tainted or the ground has been damaged. But they don't have a single example - anywhere in the world."

The Minister said he understood residents' concerns in southwest Sydney about drilling under homes, but expansion had yet to be approved. "People are naturally protective of their homes, but at this stage the government hasn't approved any mining under people's homes," he said.

But Greens upper house MP Jeremy Buckingham has vowed to oppose any plans to expand CSG mining in NSW.

"The claim that there are no examples of CSG mining having an impact on health is a lie," he said.

"There has been a massive impact on the health of people in the US. People are reporting adverse impacts such as nose bleeds and ear aches."




Preserving the graphics:  Graphics hotlinked to this site sometimes have only a short life and if I host graphics with blogspot, the graphics sometimes get shrunk down to illegibility.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here and here


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