Wednesday, August 14, 2013
An elderly Austrian can still surprise us
I had no idea that there were so many "issues" with the measurement of sea level. But Fred Singer sets it out below. We basically don't know what sea level has been doing in recent decades
Driving the seemingly endless climate-treaty negotiations, the most widely feared consequence of Global Warming appears to be a catastrophic rise in sea level (SLR). Environmental advocacy groups are filling the airwaves with lurid images of flooding of Bangladesh and Pacific islands, and raising the specter of hundreds of millions of environmental refugees demanding care and compensation.
Even sober scientists, while not endorsing such obvious scare stories, predict an acceleration of the ongoing global rise, which a system of tidal gauges places at about 18 cm (7 inches) during the 20th century. Economists concerned with trying to estimate a “social cost” of carbon-dioxide emissions predict huge economic losses from future SLR. Not surprisingly, insurance companies, looking to raise premiums, are cheering them on.
However, more detailed analyses of actual observations suggest an opposite outcome: A climate warming might even slow down SLR—rather than accelerate it. To understand this counter-intuitive result, one must first get rid of false leads—just as in a detective story. The misleading argument here is the oft-quoted statement that the climate warmed by 1degF (0.6 C) in the last 100 years and that SL rose by 18 cm. Both parts of the statement may well be true; but the second part does not necessarily follow from the first.
Curiously, Barack Obama predicted a deceleration of SLR when he accepted his party’s nomination in 2008: “This was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow, and our planet began to heal.” Some tidal-gauge data do show deceleration, but starting in 1960. Hey, wasn’t that the year during which Obama was conceived?
The principal SLR data have come from tidal gauges, which measure not only tides but storms and everything else. And from these measurements one extracts a steady rise in local sea level. There are about two dozen stations in the world with long-enough records dating back to the early 1900s, which have been used by the international tidal gauge network, located in Liverpool, England.
Since 1993, we have also had satellite observations; but these have been plagued with various types of uncertainties—although in principle, satellites can measure absolute sea level independent of any vertical motion of the coastal land surface. The tidal stations are subject to various corrections as well: they measure relative sea level with respect to the station which is fixed to the land. Since the melting of glacial ice cover from Northern continents several millennia ago, the land surface has rebounded in these places—a process called “isostatic adjustment.” But at the same time also, many tidal stations have been sinking—as the coastal land subsided because of the depletion of groundwater, of oil and gas, and of other processes that led to the compaction of sediments.
It is clear that satellites have an inherent advantage over tidal stations, but their figures don’t match up. From data gathered by the GRACE satellite system, we can also factor in detailed measurements of local gravity changes, but the record is too short to draw firm conclusions. With estimates of past SLR all over the place, how does one proceed?
Leading researcher Bruce Douglas terms SLR a “puzzle” (Physics Today March 2003), while famed Scripps Institution oceanographer Walter Munk calls it an “enigma” (ProcNatlAcadSci 2004). Maybe we should use Churchill’s description of Soviet Russia: “A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”
The difficulty with projections of sea level rise is nicely illustrated by the IPCC. The estimates of its first assessment report (1990) showed a range of 10–367 cm for sea level in 2100. The second report, published in 1996, narrowed the range to 3–124 cm. Its third report, published in 2001, showed 11–77 cm. The fourth assessment report, published in 2007, showed 14–43 cm in its draft form but changed it to 18–59 cm in the final printed version. As can be seen, the maximum SLR decreased successively as estimates improved. All these IPCC projections are very much smaller than the extreme values of about 600 cm by activist-scientist James Hansen (and by climate multi-millionaire Al Gore)—which assume excessive and rapid melting of the Greenland icecap.
This narrowing of estimates by the IPCC has caused great concern among alarmists who feared that the IPCC was being “too conservative.” Probably as a result of this peer-pressure, estimates have now increased—as will be seen in the fifth assessment report, due in September 2013. As a reviewer of IPCC reports, I have been able to look at the “second order draft,” which was recently leaked to the press. It gives values for 2100 of 45–110 cm (16–40 inches)—about double what IPCC estimated just six years ago in their fourth report. (There is no guarantee that these values will survive in the final printed version.) Still, they are very much smaller than some of the extreme estimates that have been written up in newspapers and magazines—and always blamed on Global Warming (GW) from carbon dioxide, released in the burning of fossil fuels.
There are many problems with the basic SLR data, with no easy resolution. For example, the forthcoming (2013) IPCC report shows zero values before 1880 (presumably based on corals), while other coral data and coastal sediments show positive values. Tidal gauge data show no acceleration during the strong warming of 1920–40, and continue to rise during the slight cooling of 1940–75 and during the “pause” in warming of the past 17 years. However, IPCC-2013 shows increasing values (acceleration) for SLR during the same no-warming period—and may already have been falsified.
No theory for SLR
There is no overall theory of SLR, encompassing thermal expansion of the oceans, melting of mountain glaciers, and changes, both positive and negative, of Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. (One may ignore to first approximation the “mining” of fossil groundwater and accumulation of water in reservoirs. Of course, changes in floating sea ice do not affect SLR.) A German oceanographer-activist, based in Potsdam, has proposed a “semi-empirica” theory under which SLR is related to sea surface temperature—and thus to atmospheric CO2 levels (if one accepts the existence of appreciable climate sensitivity). But his theory has no theoretical foundation whatsoever and also disagrees strongly with all observations.
The first clue that there might be something amiss with the logic is hidden in the IPCC report itself. According to their 1996 compilation of data, the contributions to SLR of the past century come mainly from three sources: (i) Thermal expansion of the warming ocean contributed about 4 cm; (ii) the melting of continental glaciers about 3.5 cm. (iii) The Polar Regions, on the other hand, produced a net lowering of SL, mostly from ice accumulation on the Antarctic continent. (The mechanism is intuitively easy to understand but difficult to calculate: A warming ocean evaporates more water, and some of it rains out in the Polar Regions, thus transferring water from the ocean to the polar ice caps.) The surprising result: When one simply adds up all these three contributions (neglecting their large uncertainties), they account for only about 20 percent of the observed rise of 18 cm. The climate warming since 1900 cannot be the cause of the SLR; something is missing here.
But if, as surmised from the absence of observed acceleration during 1920–40, ice accumulation roughly balances ocean thermal expansion and contributions from melting mountain glaciers, why then is SL rising at all? Another riddle requiring a solution.
Why not zero SLR?
The relevant clue comes from corals and from geological observations: It seems that SL has been rising for the past centuries at about the same rate as seen by tidal gauges in the last 100 years—about 18 cm per century. In other words, SL was rising even during the colder Little Ice age, from about 1400 to 1850 AD. This provides further support for the hypothesis that the observed global SLR since 1900 is reasonably independent of the observed temperature rise.
The explanation for this riddle had been suspected for some time, based on historic data of SLR derived independently from measurements of coral growth and from isotope determinations of ice volume. But the picture was filled in only more recently through estimates of the rate of melting of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), by tracing its shrinkage during past millennia (through the receding position of its “grounding line,” i.e., the line of contact of the ice sheet with the underlying continental land mass). Note that the WAIS is not floating sea ice; like a mountain glacier, its melting contributes water to the global oceans.
We can therefore describe the broad scenario as follows: The strong temperature increase that followed the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) of about 18,000 years ago has melted enough ice to raise SL by 120 meters (400 feet). The rate of rise was quite rapid at first and controlled by the melting of the huge ice sheets covering North America and the Eurasian land mass. These disappeared about 8000–5000 years ago; but the WAIS continued to melt, albeit at a much lower rate—and it is still melting at about the same rate today. Other, smaller WAIS-like ice sheets may have existed in the Antarctic, but have already melted away.
The principal conclusion is that this melting will continue for another 7000 years or so, until the WAIS disappears—unless another ice age takes over before then. Moreover, there is nothing that we can do to stop this future sea level rise! It is as inevitable as the ocean tides—as long as the Holocene (the present warm interglacial period) survives. Fortunately, coral reefs will continue to grow, as they have in the past, to keep up with SL rise. The rest of us will just have to adapt—as our ancestors did some 10,000 years ago. At least, we are better equipped to deal with environmental changes.
A final note
What about the effects of putative human-induced global warming on SLR? Will it really increase the rate above its natural value, as predicted by the IPCC? We do have a handle on this question by observing what happened when the climate warmed sharply between 1920 and 1940, before cooling between 1940 and 1975. The answer, first noted in 1997, is quite surprising and could not have been derived from theory or from mathematical models. The data seem to show that SLR slowed down slightly when the climate warmed, and then accelerated when the climate cooled. Evidently, ocean-water thermal expansion and mountain-glacier melting were less important than ice accumulation on the Antarctic continent (which lowers SL). Unfortunately, the SL data are not precise enough to withstand scientific challenge—and reliable data on ice accumulation over the whole Antarctic continent have not been available.
We can now try to answer our original question: Can a Global Warming really lower sea level rise? It all depends on the time-scale: Yes—if GW lasts only for some decades or less. No—if warmer temperatures persist for millennia, the WAIS melting rate would increase—and so would SLR.
By analogy, a future warming produced, putatively, by an increase in greenhouse gases would give the same result: i.e., reduce the rate of rise of sea level. This is not a recommendation to burn more coal in order to save Venice from drowning. It is a modest appeal to politicians to take note of new scientific developments and recognize that the drastic limits on energy use called for by climate-treaty negotiators will not stop the rising seas.
NB: This essay ignores many less important features of global SLR, such as the “mining” of groundwater and construction of dams. It also ignores important regional and local effects that depend on isostatic adjustments, ocean currents and wind patterns, land subsidence, etc. Efforts are underway to harmonize conflicting data from tidal gauges and from direct measurements of the ocean surface by satellites
Brown coal power!
Germany's Green shift ends up with them using large amounts of the most "polluting" energy source of all! No sane person ever called Greenies logical!
European electricity revenues generated from lignite [brown coal] are now three times as high as from hard coal, boosted by a collapse in the price of carbon permits, undermining Europe's ambition to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
The money will be welcome to German utilities, which are seeing their revenues squeezed by the government's 2011 decision to speed up its nuclear power exit, and by natural gas prices that are so high that electricity generated from the fuel is unprofitable.
While they undermine the European Union's target to decarbonise its energy sector by 2050, these price developments could be welcome news to the German government which is trying to find ways to reduce the spiralling costs of its renewable energy subsidies.
Germany is the world's biggest miner of lignite, and the country's number two utility RWE is its biggest producer, followed by Sweden's state-controlled utility Vattenfall and Germany's top utility E.ON.
Poland, which has big lignite reserves, is also leaning increasingly towards the fuel.
The European Union requires every utility to buy permits for each tonne of CO2 it pumps into the atmosphere and lignite, or brown coal, is the most carbon-intensive form of the main fossil fuels (lignite, hard coal and gas) used to produce electricity.
But the price for such permits has dropped from a peak of over 30 euros ($40.05) per tonne in 2006 to under 5 euros.
Though dirtier than hard coal or natural gas, lignite power generation is attractive because German or Polish utilities can use ample domestic reserves instead of having to pay for imports as they mostly do for hard coal or gas.
Additionally, the recent collapse in carbon prices, coupled with low coal and relatively high oil and gas prices, means that revenues from burning lignite are now around three times higher than those of burning hard coal.
Baseload (24 hours) lignite generation revenue margins for electricity delivered in 2014 are currently around 20-27 euros per megawatt-hour (MWh), depending on individual mining costs, compared with under 8 euros a MWh for power generated from imported hard coal, according to utility sources.
Most gas plants, which emit half as much CO2 as coal, run at a loss across Europe, Reuters figures show, and emissions certificates would have to cost around 45 euros per tonne in order to make gas more profitable than coal for electricity generation.
"Lignite power plants...are now by far the most profitable form of thermal generation in Germany. At the same time, lignite is the politically least-desired fuel given its high carbon emissions," Macquarie said in a report dated July 31.
The bank's analysts said they saw the introduction of a lignite tax across Germany as a possibility, despite the levy not being discussed ahead of next month's federal election.
Such a move could prove a headache for Europe's energy industry, most of which has campaigned for uniform EU energy and climate policy.
Another measure to make gas more attractive for electricity generation is an EU Commission proposal to support the price of carbon temporarily to make new and existing lignite and coal-fired plants less profitable.
However, the proposal has stalled ahead of the German election where energy policy is expected to play a key role.
Germany accounts for about 17 percent of global lignite production, but it imports 80 percent of its hard coal, according to German government data.
BP sues US environment agency over government contracts ban
BP has launched a legal challenge to the ban on winning new work for the US government, claiming it faces a “substantial threat of irreparable harm” unless the restriction is lifted.
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) placed the ban on BP in November, freezing it out of new supply and exploration contracts, after it pleaded guilty to criminal charges related to the Gulf of Mexico disaster.
The EPA accused it of a “lack of business integrity” over the handling of the 2010 accident, which killed 11 men and spewed millions of barrels of oil into the Gulf in the worst offshore spill in US history.
BP, which was taken by surprise by the EPA ban, initially suggested it would only be a brief suspension that would soon be resolved through an agreement. But in February the EPA took further action to issue a “mandatory debarment” against BP Exploration and Production’s Houston headquarters.
BP has now sued the EPA and two senior officials at the regulator, demanding the ban be lifted.
It alleges that “the suspension of BP is unlawful, arbitrary, capricious, and an abuse of EPA’s discretion” and says it “faces a substantial threat of irreparable harm if an injunction is not granted”.
The claim comes just two weeks after BP chief Bob Dudley told reporters the ban was not “causing distress in any way”.
BP is one of the largest fuel suppliers to the US government, with contracts worth more than $1.34bn, primarily supplying the military.
It also has more than 700 oil and gas exploration blocks in the Gulf, which remains one of its most important regions. Existing contracts are not affected by the ban.
BP said in a court filing: “EPA’s suspension of BP is not temporary and there is no pending agency investigation or legal or debarment proceedings that would permit the suspension to continue lawfully.”
The oil giant said on July 30: “Prolonged suspension or debarment from entering new federal contracts... could have a material adverse impact on the group’s operations in the US.” It hinted that further action against the EPA was possible, noting: “Decisions reached by the EPA can be challenged in federal court.”
Asked at the time about the possibility of a challenge, Mr Dudley said: “I think that’s a more routine discussion we have with the EPA. The fact we haven’t got the details of that worked out isn’t causing distress in any way.”
He played down the significance of the ban, saying: “We have largest acreage position in Gulf of Mexico, more than 700 blocks... that’s plenty, we have a lot. We have been debarred from supplying fuel to the US military going forward but quite frankly we have a very big business in the US and this is not distracting us from what we do.”
BP has previously said the contracts are relatively low margin despite the high revenues involved.
The move against the EPA adds yet another strand to the ever-growing web of litigation in which BP is embroiled over the Gulf disaster.
The company is still on trial over civil penalties and could face fines of more than $17bn under the Clean Water Act - compared with $3.5bn it has budgeted - if it is found grossly negligent, a charge it denies.
It is also battling to stem payouts under the compensation settlement it struck last year with businesses who say they lost money in the spill. BP says many of the payouts are for “fictitious” losses.
The cost has risen from an original $7.8bn estimate to $9.6bn and is this quarter expected to use up the remaining $300m BP has set aside, pushing the total bill for the disaster above $42.4bn.
Fracking 'threatens God's glorious creation'
The C of E has for some time now been the church of the environment
The Church of England has told parishioners that fracking causes environmental problems and risks lasting harm to “God’s glorious creation”.
The warning has been issued to Anglicans in Lancashire, where significant work to extract gas and oil by fracking has been proposed.
The Diocese of Blackburn has published a leaflet for its flock, telling them that for Christians, fracking presents “a choice between economic gain and a healthy environment.”
The church's decision to highlight potential downsides of fracking comes as Conservative ministers step up efforts to sell the technology to voters as an economic necessity.
Fracking, which involves fracturing rocks deep underground with water and chemicals to extract oil and natural gas, has sharply cut US energy bills and imports.
Ministers say it could do the same for Britain, but campaigners and local residents are opposing fracking in several counties, warning that it does environmental harm.
The Church leaflet appears to endorse such concerns, saying: “Fracking causes a range of environmental problems.”
The leaflet does not explicitly commit the church to a clear position for or against fracking.
But its focus is on the potential for lasting environmental damage and urges believers to consider their Christian duty to act as "stewards of the earth".
It says: "The time we spend thinking, praying and acting now to protect our drinking water, and the rest of God’s glorious Creation cannot compare with the time succeeding generations could potentially spend trying to make good what will likely happen if we in the church remain uninformed and silent."
Fracking is untested and potentially harmful, the leaflet says: “A relatively new technique to extract natural gas from previously unreachable depths is prompting a rush to drill, despite virtually no history as to its environmental impact."
The leaflet does mention economic arguments for fracking, but hints that environmental concerns should trump the "temptation" to make such gains.
The prospect of profit from fracking “has lured landowners to sign or contemplate signing leases to drill on their land. This is one way they can retain their land and make money, and money in today’s world seems to count for more than environmental stability,” it says.
“The rush to benefit from the gas-drilling bonanza is an obvious temptation for many and this, of course, raises the question of how consideration for God the Creator enters into the decision-making process.”
A spokesman for Blackburn Diocese said that the leaflet was intended to inform parishioners about the complex issues involved in fracking, and not to persuade them to oppose the technology.
“Whilst the Church of England does not have an official line in any of these particular aspects of the debate, it, together with other faith communities, does have an obligation, under God, to bring a different perspective into the debate,” he said.
“This stems from a sincere conviction to take seriously the challenges of caring for God’s fragile creation. To that end, the church believes it has a responsibility to inform its parishioners of these theological and ethical perspectives to enable them to reflect and respond accordingly.”
Only Fracking Can Plug Britain’s Power Gap
The shale revolution has shamed the wind industry by showing how to cut carbon emissions for real. Supplies of cheap and plentiful gas are here to stay for many decades to come … but only if we tell the Greens and their supporters to “frack off”.
Ofgem, the energy regulator, has warned that the UK’s surplus generating capacity of 14% will sink to a wafer-thin 2% by 2015 as we continue to shut our coal-fired power stations to meet the EU’s CO2 emission targets. A 2% surplus would place Britain on a knife edge. Any surge in energy consumption during a severe cold snap would plunge the country into blackouts.
The reason for this catastrophic energy shortfall is not difficult to see: no new nuclear plants are being constructed, because of the high cost of nuclear power and hysterical opposition from Greens and their fellow travellers who think the next Fukushima-style tsunami is about to hit the UK.
Instead, our country is being blighted with gigantic steel and concrete wind turbines. Already 5,000 have been installed across the UK at a cost of £7bn, the same cost as a new, state-of-the-art, safe, third-generation nuclear power plant — the only difference being that wind turbines will produce an unreliable and intermittent trickle of electricity for about 15 to 20 years, while a new nuclear plant will work at 90% efficiency, producing electricity day in and day out for the next 80 to 90 years.
If we are going to tackle the looming energy crisis, then we must exploit our massive reserves of shale gas, which would help us to reduce our dependency on expensive imported gas. With an estimated 200 trillion cubic feet of shale gas deposits discovered in Lancashire alone, enough to power Britain for 65 years, we could be looking at the biggest energy find since North Sea oil in the 1960s. But it is typical of the feverish nature of the climate change debate in Britain that this massive find has been either entirely ignored or robustly attacked as anti-green.
Shale gas emits about half the CO2 that burning coal produces, which is why the US has managed to reduce its CO2 emissions by 450m tonnes in the past five years. Carbon emissions in America per capita are now below the levels they were in 1963 and meanwhile gas is at almost give-away prices, kick-starting the US economy, boosting jobs and prosperity. Here, because of huge subsidies for wind turbines, which are passed straight down the line to the consumers, average electricity and gas bills have soared to more than £1,450 a year, driving almost one million Scottish households into fuel poverty. Business and industry are reeling from spiralling fuel bills, hammering jobs.
In the UK, several areas have already been identified as having large potential shale gas reserves. Last Friday, exploratory drilling began at a site in West Sussex, but already a large protesters’ camp has been erected nearby, causing a bigger nuisance than the drilling rig. Interest has also been expressed in shale fields near Falkirk. The British Geological Survey suggests that UK offshore reserves of shale gas could be five to ten times the size of onshore, perhaps in excess of one thousand trillion cubic feet, which would put the UK in the top 20 countries for shale gas reserves worldwide.
Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, involves pumping tens of thousands of litres of water, mixed with salts, soap and citric acid, into deep wells under high pressure. The mixture causes rock formations to fracture and release stored gases. It is this process that has caused hysteria amongst the Greens who are determined to stop shale gas extraction in its tracks. Their Frack Off bandwagon is now rolling out across the country. Incredibly, they argue that shale gas rigs will destroy our landscape, while in almost the same breath they support the construction of thousands of giant wind turbines, pylons, overhead lines, service roads, borrow pits and quarries in some of our most iconic and stunning countryside.
Environmental body WWF Scotland said it has concerns about the contamination of water supplies by the fracking fluids and about gas leaking into water supplies, creating risks of explosions. But boreholes for shale gas extraction commonly are drilled down to 2,000 metres or more underground, thousands of metres below the aquifer. The risk of water contamination is negligible.
Similarly, opponents of shale gas point to news reports of methane leaking through the water supply so that, in some cases in America, people have been able to set fire to water coming from bathroom taps. However, this phenomenon was first observed in 1932, decades before shale gas was thought of. It is a natural occurrence in certain parts of the US, where methane gas has saturated the rock strata and entered the aquifer. This has nothing whatsoever to do with fracking.
Critics also claim that fracking caused earth tremors during exploratory drilling near Blackpool in 2011. But shale gas producers in America, such as Royal Dutch Shell, claim they know how to control these risks. They say so long as shafts are properly sealed with steel and concrete, there is a negligible risk.
Half of small cars score badly on U.S. crash tests
And it is these inherently unsafe small cars that the EPA's CAFE standards are forcing on Americans
The auto industry continued its poor performance in an influential U.S. safety group's new crash test as half of the small cars tested did not fare well.
Six of the cars tested, most of which were 2013 models, were rated "poor" or "marginal." General Motors Co's Chevrolet Sonic and Cruze each received marginal scores, while Kia Motors Corp's Soul and 2014 Forte were rated "poor" in the results released on Thursday by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
Nissan Motor Co's Sentra also was rated "poor," while Volkswagen AG's Beetle was ranked "marginal."
The IIHS increased the rigor of its tests last year to include crashes that involve only a front corner of a vehicle. The insurance group said nearly one-fourth of U.S. front-of-vehicle crashes that result in serious injury or death involve only a single corner that strikes another vehicle or an object like a tree or utility pole.
The IIHS continues to score vehicles on side, rear, rollover and front-end crashes that impact more than just a corner.
"This is a challenging new crash test and it's not surprising that some vehicles are earning marginal and poor ratings," IIHS spokesman Russ Radar said of the small overlap front crash test.
"This crash scenario doesn't lend itself to a Band-Aid fix so for most manufacturers the countermeasure will have to be built in when there's a full redesign," he added.
Vehicle manufacturers in the U.S. market often design and engineer their models to score well on IIHS safety tests and use the results in their marketing.
"It matters because in today's world cars are so competitive that all you need is a small flaw and your competition can exploit it," Kelley Blue Book senior analyst Karl Brauer said.
Most of the 12 small cars tested were already in production before the IIHS increased the rigor of its front crash test last year. However, Radar said IIHS alerted the companies to the work the group was doing on small overlap research in 2009.
The specifications of the test were not finalized until the last year, which is late in a car's development process, Brauer said. All automakers will eventually redesign their cars to meet the standards to pass the new crash test, he said.
In the tests, IIHS crashes a vehicle at 40 mph into a 5-foot-high barrier on the driver's side that overlaps one-quarter of the vehicle's width.
Kia pointed out that the IIHS small overlap crash test goes well beyond federal requirements and the group has recognized numerous Kia vehicles as top safety picks. The South Korean automaker said it would evaluate the results carefully, but the company was proud of its safety record.
GM said customer safety remains its highest priority and it is committed to its cars performing well in all types of crashes.
"We are aggressively working to incorporate these into our models, including our small cars like the Chevrolet Sonic and Cruze, where technically feasible," GM spokeswoman Sharon Basel said in an email.
Nissan and VW said they were proud of their cars' safety records in federal crash tests and other IIHS crash tests, but they would review the small overlap test results and incorporate what is learned into future designs.
In the worst cases with the small cars that did not score well, safety cages collapsed, driver airbags moved sideways and the crash dummy's head hit the instrument panel, and side curtain airbags did not deploy or provide enough protection, IIHS chief research officer David Zuby said.
The small car segment was the fourth group of cars rated using this new test, and most of the groups have fared equally badly.
As a group, the small cars fared worse than the mid-sized family sedans, but better than the small SUVs, IIHS said. Results on the new crash test for minicars will be released later this year.
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Posted by JR at 7:24 PM