Global Chill Already Cometh?
This last winter has been exceptionally cold for most of the Northern Hemisphere, with records broken as to bitter cold temps and massive snowfalls across Europe, Asia and Alaska.
Cold Wave hits China, coldest in 30 years.
An internet search on "China Bitter Cold 2013" will bring up more of the same, indicating this was not just a one-time episode.
Moscow Cold, Snow, 50 year records broken.
An internet search on "Moscow cold snow records broken 2013" or "Russia..." will show more of the same. Here's a few reports from April 2013:
Alaska longest snow season on record, breaking a 30 year past record.
Europe also hit by record cold, snows:
Darkest Winter (lack of sun due to incessant clouds, snow, rain) for Germany in 43 years.
Very nice blue-glowing clouds picture at this website, reproduced above.
Ooops we must correct that, it is the Darkest Winter ever recorded for Germany:
OK, having said all that, it is true that "weather is not climate", even though climate is produced by the averaged aggregate of measured weather data. So what are the averages saying?
Finally the more scientifically inclined members of the "warming" community are admitting that something is not correct with their theories. As documented here:
Has Global Warming Come to a Halt?
Note the trends on this website: From 1950 to 1975 approx., no basic change in global temps. From 1980 to 1998, a warming trend. Then from 1998 to today, global temperatures have leveled off. Note the graph of El-Nino/La-Niña events, and how the peaks give rise to global changes. Likewise the small volcanic symbols, indicating sun-blocking dusts in the upper atmosphere. This particular website takes the "warmist" view, so even this begrudging admission is remarkable. Some of the weblinks on this page are rather outrageous in unscientific claim-making, rather like cheer-leaders for a football team, as if scientific conclusions needed cheer-leading to "win" -- of course this is cheerleading for Billions in grant money, for "their side". Whatever happened to old-fashioned scientific investigation, and allowing the truth to fall where it may?
Here's more, the British met office being a bit more reliable than the American NOAA or the cherry-picked "consensus" community of "scientists" whomever that is supposed to be. The last time the IPCC made such surveys, they included all kinds of leftist political hacks and "activists" from neo-Marxist environmental groups. "Climate Deniers" were of course excluded from such surveys.
Global Warming stopped 16 years ago, Met Office.
16 years ago was what? 1997-1998 The worst El Nino on record, highest global temps from that, but not from CO2 emissions.
Even the die-hard Leftist BBC finally admits, sort of, that well, maybe, POSSIBLY, their theory on warming isn't panning out as it should:
Then of course, the major radical-left politicians weigh in on the issue:
Team Obama calls global warming doubters 'crazy'
Mygod, are we now supposed to bow to the King's Hat? (If you don't know what that means, then you really have been under-educated. Look it up.) Yeah, it is the global warming critics who are the untrustworthy people, not the political hacks in Washington DC.
And just in case you think the recent disastrous tornado outbreak has something to do with global warming, just go back a few decades and the same mainstreamers today pushing the "warming" scenario as the cause of weather catastrophes were then blaming "global cooling":
1975 : Tornado Outbreaks Blamed On Global Cooling
In fact, the Little Ice Age was a time of many weather disasters, globally failed crops, famines and epidemic diseases, wars and government collapse. Definitely not so good as the Medieval Warm Period, which was still warmer on average than anything we have experienced in the last 1000 years! The MWP was a time of excellent crops, economic boom, abundance and plenty, fewer wars, with extra money to finance voyages of exploration, massive architectural projects, works of art, and so on.
This modern "climate change" fascism would have you believe otherwise, and this means, well, just ignore all those reports given above. Erase them from your memory, even if you experienced such bitter cold.
What disasters will be necessary to put an end to the intensive planning for increased warming, when in fact we should be putting more attention to the cold side of things.
We have yet another cold blast of winter headed into the Pacific Northwest just as I write this, in the latter part of May. Maybe a chilly brush, or a big dump of snow. Who can say? No clear idea what lays ahead, except that it won't be like what is predicted out of Washington DC. Prepare accordingly.
IEA warns Germany on soaring green dream costs
Germany's push for wind and solar and its retreat from nuclear power is driving electricity costs to untenable levels and destroying support for the green agenda, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has warned.
“The fact that German electricity prices are among the highest in Europe, must serve as a warning signal,” said the IEA. “The transition to low-carbon energy requires public acceptance, and therefore retail electricity prices to remain at an affordable level.”
Germany’s so called “Energiewende” aims to raise the share of electricity from renewables to 50pc by 2030 and 80pc by the midcentury, a huge challenge for a country with an energy-hungry industrial base.
Environment minister Peter Altmaier says costs could reach €1 trillion by 2039, though this could be trimmed to €700bn by slashing feed-in tariffs. The vast sums have begun to alarm German taxpayers while industry fears that heavy reliance on wind power in the North Sea could prove exorbitant and risk an energy crunch.
“The German power system is structurally broken,” said a report by Macquarie. “There are not enough cables to bring the electricity to the main industrial centres in the Ruhr and Rhine regions, and the patchwork grid cannot cope."
Electricity costs rose 11pc last year, in part to fund subsidies for wind and solar. This is doing little to create jobs at home since China’s solar upstarts have swept the market while Germany’s solar pioneers go bust.
The IEA said the reserve margins for generators would erode after 2015, implying blackouts. Germany’s decision to close eight nuclear plants has also led to surge in high-CO2 coal imports.
Collapse of bee colonies is latest target for anti-pesticide groups
By Paul Driessen
Beekeeping is big business, and everyone loves honey and foods made possible by pollination. But “colony collapse disorder” threatens bees and crop pollination in many areas.
CCD and other bee die-offs are nothing new.
What we now call colony collapse was first reported in 1869, and many outbreaks since then have sent scientists scurrying for explanations and solutions. Fungi, varroa mites and other possible suspects have been implicated, but no definitive answer has yet been found.
That’s created a perfect environment for anti-pesticide groups. They want the U.S. and EU to ban a widely used class of safe “neonicotinoid” pesticides, by blaming them for bee population declines in various countries.
Their scary assertions are pure conjecture, but that hasn’t stopped activists — or news outlets — from promoting scary stories implicating the chemicals.
Derived from naturally-occurring nicotine plant compounds, “neonics” have been hailed as a low-toxicity pest treatment.
They are often applied to seeds or on soils during planting, become part of the plants’ physiology, and work by giving treated plants internal defenses against invading pests.
That means neonics are toxic only to insects that feed on crops — dramatically reducing the need to spray entire fields with other pesticides, and curtailing risks to farm workers and beneficial insects.
Claims that these insecticides could kill bees appear plausible at first blush, and lab studies have shown that high doses can affect bees.
However, the doses that bees receive in lab studies “are far above what a realistic field dose exposure would be,” says Dr. Cynthia Scott-Dupree, environmental biology professor at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada.
Scott-Dupree helped coordinate a Canadian field study that compared hives exposed to neonics to those that weren’t exposed — and found no difference in colony health between the two groups. Another study by Britain’s Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs reached the same conclusion.
A DEFRA evaluation of studies purporting to link neonics to bee harm found the lab work was conducted under extreme scenarios that wouldn’t occur under real-world conditions.
“Risk to bee populations from neonicotinoids, as they are currently used, is low,” it concluded.
That’s hardly surprising. Plant tissues contain only tiny amounts of neonics, bees are not feeding on the plants, and pollen contains barely detectable neonic levels.
Various neonicotinoids are widely used in Canada to protect its vast canola fields, and Canadian bee populations are thriving, notes science writer Jon Entine.
Australia is likewise one of the world’s prime users of these pesticides, and its bee colonies are among the planet’s healthiest.
Nevertheless, four beekeepers and five activist groups (Beyond Pesticides, Center for Food Safety, Pesticide Action Network of North America, Sierra Club and Center for Environmental Health) have sued the Environmental Protection Agency, demanding that the EPA immediately ban all neonicotinoids.
The lawsuit is not merely ill-advised. By blaming pesticides, activists are ignore— and deflect attention from — a real, serious threat to bees: a parasitic mite aptly named “Varroa destructor.” Varroa threatens honeybees directly, while spreading and activating previously dormant or harmless bee viruses, which then become dangerous. It is not easy to destroy.
“You can imagine how hard it is to kill a bug on a bug,” says John Miller, president of the California State Beekeepers Association, and sometimes the cure is worse than the disease. Treating varroa requires an insecticide that can be toxic to bees at levels high enough to work. Well-intentioned apiarists fighting varroa can accidentally overdose hives with miticides.
Multiple studies point to other factors that explain why bees are struggling. They include bees developing resistance to antibiotics, funguses like Nosema, multiple bee viruses and parasites, bacterial infections like foulbrood, exposure to commonly used organophosphates, bee habitat loss, and even long-term bee inbreeding and resultant lack of genetic diversity.
Activists aren’t asking for investigation into these problems — which calls their science, sincerity and integrity into question.
Right now, no one knows why bees aren’t thriving. Studies show that neonicotinoids are innocent, and reflexive bans will harm farmers, whose crop yields will fall; consumers, whose food bills will rise and food safety will fall; and environmental values, as older, more toxic insecticides will have to be reintroduced to protect crops.
The prudent, precautionary approach would be to avoid eliminating vital, low-toxicity neonicotinoids, while continuing to study their potential effects on bees and the causes of die-offs and colony collapses.
Sound, replicable science must underpin all pesticide policies, or the unintended consequences will be serious, far-reaching and most harmful to poor families.
We need answers, not scapegoats.
Israeli electric car firm failing too
Is the end nigh for Better Place? Within the next few days, a meeting will take place at Israel Corporation (TASE: ILCO), Better Place's main investor, on the electric car venture's future, and whether or not it will continue will depend upon its ability to continue raising cash.
In that regard, Idan Ofer, who controls Israel Corp., recently approached potential investors.
Better Place said in response to the report, "In the past few months Better Place has continued its many efforts to maintain its activity. No other decision has yet been reached on the matter."
Market sources estimated recently that Better Place would need at least another four years, and investment of another $500 million, to reach operating breakeven. This estimate is based upon annual investment of some $120 million in the venture, which recently underwent a streamlining program including layoffs and shutting down of activities.
As far as is known, it has enough cash to last until August 2013, and it seeks creative solutions for raising capital. Sources inform "Globes" that it has again examined the possibility of raising equity from Israeli institutions.
From its founding in 2007 up until the end of 2012, Better Place ran up a loss of $812 million.
Greenie food freakery
By Rich Kozlovich
Recently Jeff Stier and Henry I. Miller wrote an article titled; How Much Of Food Activism Is New Age, Airy-Fairy Nonsense. I have followed their work for years, and both have done yeoman like work defeating the junk science that has become so common place. The article deals with food and how it is prepared; how activist want it prepared; and whether or not it matters. The title of this article is from this line in the article; “The campaign to demonize the food industry is at the same time both radical and mainstream, a recipe for trouble.” I thought this was a great foundation to justify exploring the whole concept of how the radicals became mainstream in so many arenas.
Since this started as a food issue we can start there with Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s) and farming as a whole.
The ‘green’ movement insists that modern techniques used in agriculture are unnecessary and the world should turn to ‘organic’ methods exclusively. That means not using pesticides - although organic farmers use pesticides. It means using organic fertilizers such as manure and never using synthetic fertilizers – although this is the cause of most of the e-coli scares and recalls. And it means never using Genetically Modified plants – in spite of the fact that these plants require less pesticides and have greater growing capacity and production, including those that can be used in soil that is unfit for plants that have not been modified.
The thing that intrigues me is this; are any of these activists farmers? Are any of these people responsible for feeding the undernourished millions in the third world? If so, where were they when Norman Borlaug, who may have been the greatest man to live in the 20th century, was developing the Green Revolution; a system of agriculture which saved untold hundreds of millions of lives; a system which required the use of high yield plants, synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. He also believed that GMO’s were an important advancement in food production.
Even to the most casual observer there should be some obvious questions that should jump right out to everyone such as:
* What system were they using before?
* Was it an “all natural” or “organic system”?
* If organic is so great why is it that every poor society abandoned it as soon as they could for modern tools of food production?
* Finally; why is it that Borlaug and his supporters worked in the dirt and demonstrated how to do it allowing them to voluntarily choose for themselves to abandon ‘organic’ for modern practices, but the activist attempt to force everyone to adopt ‘organic’ via regulations and vile false claims about these life saving products? Is it because ‘organic’ is a failure and will not be accepted ‘naturally’?
* And finally and most importantly; if ‘organic’ is as great as they claim why don’t they just go out and do it and show everyone up?
I can answer the last question. They don’t because they can’t. Organic will never meet the needs of a hungry world. We hear this claptrap that ‘organic’ can do it, it is sustainable, it is better for the land and for humanity, and it is the future constantly from the media and many in society has accepted these radicals as mainstreamers. Is that dangerous? Are they dangerous? You had better believe it.
The “moderate” radicals of the environmental movement “only” want to reduce the world’s population by four or five billion people. The “really” radical, which is a large minority, think that mankind is a virus that should be eradicated. I have been criticized for saying this in the past by those who say that the “really” radical group is not representative of environmentalism’s thinking. My response has always been the same; who amongst the green leadership has openly criticized and chastised them, and why is it that these people are applauded publicly when they spout this insanity if they are not representative of environmentalism? If this radical mentality about agriculture ever becomes mainstream to the point that it is allowed to be imposed on the world then I can tell you absolutely what will happen. The “moderates” of the green movement will be a long on their way to eliminating billions of people.
They scoff at claims that the environmental movement is ‘conspiring’ to starve million to death, but what they do is far more persuasive than what they say. In 2002 fourteen million people faced starvation in southern Africa due to a terrible drought. The U.S. offered tons of GMO food to save their lives, but it was rejected because European Union officials bullied African leaders into doing so because the EU is against GMO’s, and were threatened with a boycott of their agricultural products, and since the E.U is essential to their export trade they acquiesced.
Twenty six thousand tons …..tons….. of grain was shipped to Zambia where it sat in storage, unused by a population that was down to one small meal a day. The president of the country - whose family wasn’t down to one meal a day I would be willing to bet - said, “We would rather starve than get something toxic”. Yet the U.S. had been consuming those food stuffs for decades without harm of any kind. And the ‘radicals’ who promoted lies to African leaders had to know that. They spent 500 million dollars on their propaganda against GMO’s to the Third World when 175 million would have feed millions for months. They claim they’re not conspiring to starve millions to death, but if starvation is the outcome of their actions does it matter whether they are conspiring or not? It is the outcome of their ‘radical’ thinking that counts. They are identified by what they do!
Radicals always promise utopia, yet dystopia follows these radicals like Sancho Panza followed Don Quixote – a madman. When 'radical' becomes 'mainstream' people die. Who will answer for those lives?
GREENIE ROUNDUP FROM AUSTRALIA
Three current reports below
Many conservative Federal politicians opposed to windfarms
Outspoken Liberal [Party] MPs plan to defy publicly the official party line by attending a Tea Party-style anti-wind-farm rally at Parliament House, widening the rift in Coalition ranks over renewable energy targets.
The Canberra rally on June 18 is being promoted through a clandestine group using a website called stopthesethings.com, which conceals the identity of many of its supporters.
Broadcaster Alan Jones is named on the site as master of ceremonies for the event, which is being touted as the "Wind Power Fraud" rally.
NSW Liberal MPs Craig Kelly and Alby Schultz are among the line-up of speakers, as is West Australian Liberal senator Chris Bach. The Coalition's star candidate to replace the retiring Mr Schultz in the seat of Hume Angus Taylor has also been recruited.
The boldness of the Liberal wind-farm opponents is raising suggestions the Coalition is about to backflip on the renewable energy target, a bipartisan commitment to source a fifth of Australia's power from renewables by 2020.
The shadow environment minister Greg Hunt recently confirmed the party's commitment to the target and chose not to chastise the MPs who had begun speaking out against it.
"The Coalition is aware of the community concerns regarding wind farms," Mr Hunt said. "We have committed to a full medical research into the potential impact if elected. It is important that MPs listen to their communities … there is no change to our support for the 20 per cent target."
During a post-budget interview with Mr Jones, shadow treasurer Joe Hockey would not be drawn on the issue, saying only that he would have to consult with his colleagues.
The rally's organisers are goading Mr Hockey to "come clean" over renewable energy.
Victorian senator John Madigan (Democratic Labor) and independent South Australian senator Nick Xenophon will also speak. The pair has co-sponsored of an excessive noise bill in relation to wind farms.
Senator Xenophon said he was invited through Senator Madigan's office and didn't really know who was behind the rally.
"I don't look at all my invitations that closely," he said. "But I am happy to talk at the event and I will say that, while I do believe something should be done about climate change, the economics of wind farms don't stack up and neither do the environmental benefits."
Senator Madigan's office confirmed he was scheduled to address the gathering.
Environmental groups did not wish to comment, but it's understood plans are being considered to stage a Canberra event in support of renewable energy on the same day.
Wildlife guru is a people hater
It figures, I guess. The USA has 300 million people. Australia has 22 million. The USA and Australia are about the same size geographically. It takes a Greenie to see no room for expansion in Australia's population
ONE of the world’s leading naturalists, Sir David Attenborough, has cautioned Australia against pursuing further population growth, labelling an unlimited expansion a kind of madness.
Speaking to the Sunday Canberra Times ahead of a national tour of Australia in June, Sir David questioned why the country still found itself from time to time actively debating whether it needed to grow its population.
“Why would you want to do that? I don’t understand that. The notion that you could continue to expand and increase and grow in an infinite way on a planet which is finite, is a kind of lunacy. You can see how mad that is by the expression that you can’t believe that you can grow infinitely in a finite place – unless of course you’re an economist.”
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia’s population is estimated to grow to between 30.9 million and 42.5 million people by 2056.
The first Sustainable Australia report released earlier this month said the nation’s population was growing at 1.7 per cent, one of the fastest rates in the developed world.
In 2009 former prime minister Kevin Rudd called for a ‘Big Australia’, but his successor Julia Gillard has rejected that notion and called instead for sustainable growth.
Sir David said his tour next month was to discuss highlights of his six decades of nature filmmaking, not to speak out on environmental issues. “I’m not on a proselytising tour. On occasions I speak on these issues where it’s appropriate and where the subject has come up,” he said.
While he did not believe bureaucrats should meddle in a family’s right to have children, he said had China not introduced its controversial one-child policy in 1979 the consequences for the planet would have been catastrophic.
“One thing you can say is that in those places where women are in charge of their bodies, where they have the vote, where they are allowed to dictate what they do and what they want, whether it’s proper medical facilities for birth control, the birth rate falls,” he said.
Solar price rise to end power divide
"Investors" in government promises to lose their dividends. LOL
AUSTRALIA'S one million rooftop solar households could be forced to pay new fixed charges to help recover billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies and make electricity prices fairer for all consumers.
A series of electricity industry reports has highlighted the inequity in existing power pricing where customers without solar panels are unfairly subsidising those with them.
Queensland Energy Minister Mark McArdle has warned that existing rooftop solar contracts will cost the state more than $2.8 billion over the next 15 years and is preparing a major submission to cabinet within a month recommending more user-pays charges. Electricity tariffs could be changed to include a higher network access charge and lower unit prices per kilowatt hour, a move that would increase the cost for rooftop solar users.
A national meeting of electricity executives in Sydney this week discussed a potential "death spiral" for the industry as high electricity prices force more people off the grid, increasing costs further for those who remained.
Mr McArdle said the number of households with rooftop solar had continued to grow despite a cutback in government subsidies and the gap between the haves and have-nots in electricity widening.
"If one group of consumers enjoys a benefit in excess of the true savings they make, other electricity customers have to pay the price of those excess benefits or lower prices," he said.
"When those doing the paying are likely those least able to afford it, and those enjoying the benefits are those likely to be most able to afford to meet their true costs, then something is truly wrong."
The problem was compounded because power companies were forced to buy high-priced electricity from rooftop solar when there was no demand for electricity from customers.
And baseload power generators were forced to run inefficiently to be ready for when "intermittent" solar power was not available.
Renewable industry lobby groups have rejected calls for a new fixed charge.
Clean Energy Council deputy chief executive Kane Thornton said: "It would be like telling early adopters of email that they need to chip in to pay for stamps."
The Greens said yesterday they would spend $405 million a year on a new federal government agency to cut spending on electricity infrastructure, improve energy efficiency, and set higher prices for renewable energy produced by households which generate solar power.
Leader Christine Milne said the Greens were the only party with innovative ideas to help Australians live a fairer, cheaper and cleaner future.
The cost of the new agency would not include the higher charges paid by electricity companies from rooftop solar under the Greens scheme. An investigation by the Queensland Productivity Commission found that, by 2015-16, most Queenslanders would be paying $276 a year or 17 per cent of their annual power bill to subsidise other residents having solar power on their roofs.
Mr McArdle said this did not include the cost of upgrading the electricity network to cope with widespread power flowing back into the grid.
A report by consultancy ACIL Tasman for the Electricity Supply Association of Australia said solar customers were overcompensated when they generated electricity and used it on site because they were not making a contribution to the cost of providing network services.
There were also issues of equity and fairness, as some customers were unable to install rooftop solar systems because they were renters or lived in an apartment.
Fairness was an issue because one customer's choice to install rooftop solar forced other customers to pay more for network service.
"The distortion could give rise to a 'price spiral' where the rising cost of electricity, driven by the ongoing reallocation of network costs, made solar increasingly attractive to customers," ACIL Tasman said.
The ESAA discussion paper, Who Pays for Solar Energy, said more than one in 10 households were generating electricity from solar panels on their roof.
"Subsidies for solar systems have to be paid for somehow," the paper said. "Basically, households who don't have solar help pay the power bills of households who do. "The cost of these transfers from non-solar to solar households now runs to many millions of dollars per year."
Like Queensland, all state governments have cut back their generous feed-in tariff schemes, but are likely to seriously consider the ESAA reports to move towards a fixed network access charge. Solar has posed significant problems for electricity companies in Western Australia and NSW.
The discussion paper said a new way was needed to charge consumers for the cost of the networks to make sure everybody paid their fair share. "We have to find a more equitable way for charging for electricity that does not unfairly benefit some households because they can afford the latest technology," the discussion paper said. "Electricity consumers should pay their fair share of network costs.
"One way to make the way we pay for electricity more equitable is to change network tariffs so they better reflect underlying costs."
This could include a higher proportion of fixed network charges and a lower percentage based on the amount of electricity consumed.
Mr Thornton said calls for higher fixed charges for households with solar panels were "ridiculous".
"Similar claims that solar drives up bills because network upgrades are required to accommodate the extra electricity fed into the grid are also incorrect," he said. "All new solar systems in Queensland are required to go through an assessment process with the distribution business to ensure they do not adversely impact on the grid."
For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.
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