Tuesday, November 26, 2013

63 Percent Chance Weather Predictors Are Skeptics on Global Warming

A new survey from the American Meteorological Society contains more bad news for global warming alarmist: people who actually get paid for accurately predicting weather are increasingly skeptical about whether global warming is man-made or natural or whether global warming is occurring at all.

The survey is the result of increasing tension amongst meteorologists regarding global warming.

“There has been tension in recent years among AMS members who hold different views on climate change,” explains the AMS in the introduction to the new report. “Some members have expressed that their views – which question the view that human-caused global warming was occurring – are treated with hostility within the AMS.”

Scientists? Bullying each other? Naaaaww.

The report found that only 37% of meteorologists who did not make a living by publishing papers supporting the theory that global warming is caused by human activity actually think that man-made global warming is real.

That is meteorologists who make a living predicting weather events are the ones least likely to believe the theories created by new found “climate science.”

The survey also found that of all meteorologists only a bare majority supported man-made global warming theory.

48 percent did not support man-made global warming theory.

The AMS sent out a survey to all meteorologists and got a return of 1854 responses.

The AMS says that the study finds that the more educated experts are about climate science, the more likely they are to believe that global warming is man-made.

But I say that the data just proves that the more dependent scientists are on believing global warming to be man-made in order to make a living through publishing, the more likely they are to believe global warming is man-made because that’s how they make their living.

Of 1821 meteorologist included in the survey, only 231 made a living publishing papers regarding man-made global warming theory. Yet they accounted for a larger share of meteorologists who believe in man-made global warming.

73% of scientists who publish papers regarding global warming and climate are inclined to believe that global warming is real and global warming is man-made.

The farther that science gets from this conflict of interest, it seems, the more likely it is that they are disinclined to believe global warming is man-made.

In essence, it’s as if a group surveyed the College of Cardinals to prove the existence of God and ascribed the results to the college members’ oversized education rather than their piety.

And all of this goes to show that the argument that there has already been a scientific consensus reached amongst experts that global warming is real and global warming is man-made is a political argument rather than a scientific one.

“A substantial number of expert AMS members – 22% of the most expert group in our sample – do not subscribe to the position that global warming is mostly human-caused,” says the AMS. “Climate experts are not completely homogenous in their views on global warming, just as climate skeptics have been shown to have a variety of nuanced opinions. Any suggestion that all those with non-majority views simply need to be ‘educated’ is inaccurate and likely to be insulting to a substantial number of AMS members.”

Gee, ya think?

Those of us who are skeptics about global warming are used to being marginalized, trivialized and brutalized by a tiny fraction of people whose wallets get fat by publishing papers in support of man-made global warming theory.

But while more and more data comes out calling into question man-made global warming models, it’s nice to see professional organizations start to treat skeptics with, if not exactly respect, at least the decency accorded people accused of some heinous crime.

Because while this is progress, make no mistake they’re still looking to prove us guilty, if necessary by reason of insanity, if in fact they can’t muster the scientific arguments.

Which of course they can’t.


Guilty plea in bird deaths at wind farms a first

A major U.S. power company has pleaded guilty to killing eagles and other birds at two Wyoming wind farms and agreed to pay $1 million as part of the first enforcement of environmental laws protecting birds against wind energy facilities.

Until the settlement announced Friday with Duke Energy Corp. and its renewable energy arm, not a single wind energy company had been prosecuted for a death of an eagle or other protected bird — even though each death is a violation of federal law, unless a company has a federal permit. Not a single wind energy facility has obtained a permit.

The Charlotte, N.C.-based company pleaded guilty to killing 14 eagles and 149 other birds at its Top of the World and Campbell Hill wind farms outside Casper, Wyo. All the deaths, which included golden eagles, hawks, blackbirds, wrens and sparrows, occurred from 2009 to 2013.

"Wind energy is not green if it is killing hundreds of thousands of birds," said George Fenwick, president of the American Bird Conservancy, which supports properly sited wind farms. "The unfortunate reality is that the flagrant violations of the law seen in this case are widespread."

There could be more enforcement. The Fish and Wildlife Service is investigating 18 bird-death cases involving wind-power facilities, and about a half-dozen have been referred to the Justice Department.

Wind farms are clusters of turbines as tall as 30-story buildings, with spinning rotors as wide as a passenger jet's wingspan. Though the blades appear to move slowly, they can reach speeds up to 170 mph at the tips, creating tornado-like vortexes. Eagles are especially vulnerable because they don't look up as they scan the ground for food, failing to notice the blades until it's too late.

"No form of energy generation, or human activity for that matter, is completely free of impacts, and wind energy is no exception," the American Wind Energy Association said in a statement.

The case against Duke Energy and Duke Energy Renewables Inc. was the first prosecuted under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act against a wind energy company. The Obama administration has championed pollution-free wind power and used the same law against oil companies and power companies for drowning and electrocuting birds.

"In this plea agreement, Duke Energy Renewables acknowledges that it constructed these wind projects in a manner it knew beforehand would likely result in avian deaths," Robert G. Dreher, acting assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's Environment and Natural Resources Division, said in a statement.

Duke has a market capitalization of nearly $50 billion.

"We deeply regret the impacts of golden eagles at two of our wind facilities," Greg Wolf, president of Duke Energy Renewables, said in a statement. "Our goal is to provide the benefits of wind energy in the most environmentally responsible way possible."

A study in September by federal biologists found that wind turbines had killed at least 67 bald and golden eagles since 2008. Wyoming had the most eagle deaths. That did not include deaths at Altamont Pass, an area in northern California where wind farms kill an estimated 60 eagles a year.

An investigation in May by The Associated Press revealed dozens of eagle deaths from wind energy facilities, including at Duke's Top of the World farm, the deadliest for eagles of 15 such facilities that Duke operates nationwide.

In 2009, Exxon Mobil pleaded guilty and paid $600,000 for killing 85 birds in five states. The BP oil company was fined $100 million for killing and harming migratory birds during the 2010 Gulf oil spill. And PacifiCorp, which operates coal plants, paid more than $10.5 million in 2009 for electrocuting 232 eagles along power lines and at its substations.

The wind farms in Friday's settlement came on line before the Obama administration drafted voluntary guidelines encouraging wind energy companies to work with the Fish and Wildlife Service to avoid locations that would impact wildlife. Companies that choose to cooperate get rewarded because prosecutors take it into consideration before pursuing prosecution.

Once a wind farm is built, there is little a company can do to stop the deaths. Some companies have tried using radar to detect birds and to shut down the turbines when they get too close. Others have used human spotters to warn when birds are flying too close to the blades. Another tactic has been to remove vegetation to reduce the prey the birds like to eat.

As part of the agreement, Duke will continue to use field biologists to identify eagles and shut down turbines when they get too close. It will install new radar technology, similar to what is used in Afghanistan to track missiles. And it will continue to voluntarily report all eagle and bird deaths to the government.

The company will also have to apply for an eagle take permit and draft a plan to reduce eagle and bird deaths at its four wind farms in Wyoming.

Duke's $1 million will be divided. The fine — $400,000 — will go into a wetlands conservation fund. The state of Wyoming gets $100,000. The remainder will be used to purchase land or easements to protect golden eagle habitat and for projects aimed at minimizing interactions between eagles and wind turbines in Wyoming.


Change Of Wording Let’s Emerging Nations Off The Hook Over CO2 Emissions

Loopholes in a UN agreement on climate change will allow China, India and other emerging economies to delay setting any targets to cut their overall emissions.

European Union member states now face a dilemma over whether to continue with plans to make ambitious pledges next year to cut emissions by 2030 without any guarantee that countries with far larger carbon footprints will follow.

China weakened the wording of the agreement during a final negotiating session of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change meeting in Warsaw. This meant the meeting ended without setting a clear course towards the global deal on emissions scheduled to be signed in Paris in December 2015.

A suggestion by the US that each country should propose emissions targets for discussion by March 2015 was watered down by adding that only those nations “ready to do so” would observe the deadline. The word “commitments” was replaced with the weaker “contributions”.

The changes were made to accommodate a group of 130 developing nations which argue that Britain and other countries which were early to industrialise have a “historical responsibility” for emissions. The 130 are resisting setting their own binding targets, saying they must be allowed to continue expanding their economies. The EU and the US say that the distinction made between developing and developed countries in the 1997 Kyoto Protocol is increasingly irrelevant.

When the protocol was being negotiated, developing countries accounted for only about a third of emissions. Now they are responsible for 60 per cent and their share is still growing, with China this year overtaking the EU in emissions per person.

The conference agreed a new “Warsaw International Mechanism” to address the issue of losses incurred by developing countries from extreme weather events, which many scientists say have been intensified by climate change.

The agreement also includes a commitment to study the issue “to address gaps in the understanding” but stops short of committing rich countries to pay the compensation demanded by the Philippines and others.

A spokesman for the Department of ­Energy and Climate Change said that the mechanism included no new financial commitment “aside from some modest running costs”. However, it will result in the accumulation of evidence of losses which could strengthen future claims for compensation.


Poland recognizes the real global warming agenda

A cabal of climate change alarmists landed in Warsaw, Poland, last weekend, to hammer out terms and rally support for a new binding global agreement to “save the planet” from “dangerous global warming.”

Not so fast, tens of thousands of Poles responded. The facts support their position.

Average global temperatures have not risen in 16 years, even as atmospheric carbon dioxide levels have increased steadily, helping plants grow faster and better.  Antarctic ice is at a record high, Arctic sea ice is back to normal, and at current rates Greenland would not melt for 13,000 years.  A new research paper in Global and Planetary Change reveals that global sea level rise has decelerated by 44 percent since 2004, to barely 7 inches per century!

These realities were underscored during a climate policy conference in Warsaw on the eve of the UN confab. The Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) keynoted the event, which was sponsored by Solidarity, the Institute for Globalization, and other Polish and European NGOs. Capping off the program, representatives from the United States, Italy, Sweden, Hungary, and Poland formally signed the “Warsaw Declaration.”

The declaration calls on the United Nations to discontinue work on a new treaty until a genuine “scientific consensus is reached on the phenomenon of so-called global warming,” including both its natural and human causes.

The next day, more than 50,000 enthusiastic Poles gathered in downtown Warsaw to celebrate National Independence Day, which commemorates the restoration of Poland’s statehood in 1918, after 123 years of partition and occupation by Russia, Prussia, and Austria.

As millions more watched on live television, I was honored to be invited to the stage, to deliver an address [interpreter at left in photo] celebrating freedom and warning against the UN’s dangerous, oppressive climate agenda. It was undoubtedly the largest audiences ever to hear a speech denouncing UN global warming policies, and I was proud to stand next to a CFACT banner that read “No to UN Climate Hype” in Polish — and to be surrounded by thousands of people wearing stickers bearing the same message.

It was clear that — after 12 decades of partition, 6 years of Nazi terror, and 44 years of Russian and Communist subjugation — few Poles are in any mood to have their lives, liberties, and living standards dictated by the European Union and United Nations, under the guise of “protecting the planet” from the supposed “ravages” of “cataclysmic” global warming (or “climate change” or “climate disruption” or whatever the catch-phrase of the week might be).

This is “a new battle for freedom,” I emphasized, “against those who would use environmental and climate alarmism to steal away our liberties and give international bureaucrats control over our energy sources, our daily lives, our prosperity, and our national sovereignty.”

During last year’s climate meeting in Rio de Janeiro, UN climate chief Christiana Figueres said that what the UN intends is “a complete economic transformation of the world.” In 2000, former French President Jacques Chirac called the Kyoto climate treaty “the first component of authentic global governance.” And last year IPCC Working Group III co-chair Ottmar Edenhofer said international climate policy is not about environmental policy; it is about “how we redistribute the world’s wealth.”

These attitudes and agendas are bad news for those of us who love freedom. UN climate policy is bad news for the people of Poland, I stressed. The good news is that my address was carried live on Polish national television, covered by many international media outlets, and heartily endorsed by the throngs of independence celebrants, who gave a rousing chant in support of my message following my address.

My talk was certainly noticed by the UN climate alarmists, who were kicking off their COP-19 climate conference, power grab, and wealth redistribution schemes just a few kilometers away.

“The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion,” I continued, quoting from the Book of Proverbs. That is why environmentalists and climate bureaucrats don’t want to debate these issues or show anyone the assumptions, massaged temperature data, and secret codes that they use in their misleading global warming computer models. “They know they are deceiving the world.”

Those of us gathered in Warsaw that day, I concluded, “stand for freedom. We stand for opportunity. We stand for our families. We stand for a strong and prosperous future. Together let us be bold as a lion.”

The UN made a big mistake in choosing Poland to host this global warming treaty summit. The Poles see right through the global warming hype and propaganda.  Having to endure generations of Nazi and Communist oppression, pollution, and economic deprivation has left them with a deep distaste for bureaucratic control and further curbs on freedom, opportunity, and growth. Having to live according to grim ideologies enforced by threats of jail, or worse, has made them angry about new codes of ecologically correct speech the global warming hype and propaganda.

Poland deserves freedom and prosperity. It knows it cannot move forward without energy — the Master Resource, the lifeblood of modern industrialized societies. The brave Poles are not about to cede their sovereignty to UN control — not about to let phony climate Armageddon alarms dictate their lives, livelihoods, liberties, living standards and life spans. They will not let the EU or UN control virtually everything they make, grow, ship, eat, drive and do.

They are fully aware that Poland is blessed with some of the biggest coal and shale gas reserves in all of Europe. They know Japan has reversed course, and
will now allow a 3 percent increase in greenhouse gas emissions above 1990 levels, instead of mandating a 25 percent cut. They realize that “rich nations” (or more accurately, formerly rich nations) have rejected demands that they fork over $30 billion immediately, followed by $100 billion annually — in “compensation,” “adaptation,” and “mitigation” money, to pay for “damages” from more frequent, more intense climate changes that aren’t happening, but are supposedly caused by industrialized nations.

They also know Germany is expanding its coal use to generate affordable electricity, and to reverse the skyrocketing energy prices and job destruction that are sending shock waves through the German economy. Poland too needs all the coal, oil, and natural gas power it can muster, to build an economy that was held back for decades by war and Communist misrule.

CFACT has been an officially recognized NGO at United Nations conferences for nearly two decades. It will be in Warsaw throughout the 2-week-long COP-19 confab, with a delegation headlined by Apollo VII astronaut, Colonel Walter Cunningham, who is highly critical of UN climate pseudo-science.

We will steadfastly present the facts about natural and manmade climate change, and insist absolutely that environmental policies must reflect genuine science and the needs of human beings.

We will also support Polish feelings about the UN climate treaty — which boil down to what Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher told the Soviet Union: “Let Poland be Poland!”


Global Warming Activism: Another Year, Another U.N. Flop

Why do they bother?  At this time every year, the U.N. holds a meeting of the Parties to its climate change treaty adopted at the Rio “Earth Summit” twenty-one years ago, and in force for 19 years.  In the intervening time, there isn’t a single shred of evidence that it has done anything about global temperature.

In no small part, that’s because global temperature hasn’t done very much.  Two years after it went into force—if you believe the surface temperature history that scientists consult the most—we entered into an era with no significant additional warming.  That makes it kind of hard to find any signal resulting from the treaty.

The playbook is as predictable as the futility of the Cubs.  Weeks before the confabs begin in November, environmental groups and activist scientists gin up the usual “it’s even worse than we thought” meme.  The New York Times will carry a front page story by Justin Gillis, which will be shredded for its (many) sins of omission by the blogosphere before noon.

Not to be outdone, the Washington Post will carry a masthead piece that It’s Time to Get Serious,  perhaps as Sewious as Elmer Fudd is about the Wascally Wabbit.

Soon the conference begins.  This year, 10,000+ descended upon Warsaw, very few flying in the back of the airplane.  While there are 189 signatories to the treaty, only 134 countries are sending anyone of ministerial rank. Hey, we’re serious about this!

An added fillip this year was the landfall of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines just days before the gathering.  UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was happy to conflate it with global warming, in complete contravention to his own Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s latest science report, released just two month ago, saying that there’s really not much of a link, after all. According to the IPCC,  “there is no significant trend in global tropical cyclone frequency.”

The purported business of Warsaw is to begin to hash out a new treaty, scheduled for 2015, to replace the predictable failure of the Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gases.  Without jiggling the figures, most nations didn’t live up to their “commitments,” and even if everyone had, there would be no detectable effect on temperature—even six decades from now.

That’s the purported business.  The real business is to serve as a two-week hectoring platform for poor countries to euchre the developed world for money to adapt to the supposed climate horrors we are raining down on them.  The usual figure bandied about is $100 billion a year, mainly from U.S. taxpayers (and their children and their grandchildren).  A nation pushing $17 trillion in debt isn’t likely to blithely take on another tranche.

It is a fact that poorer nations are impacted by the vagaries of weather and climate much more so than affluent ones.  Even modest development helps a great deal.  43 years ago tropical cyclone Bohla—a mere category 3 storm—killed at least 300,000 in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh).  Thanks to better infrastructure, detection and forecast technology, and improved communication, that’s just not likely to happen again, even in a stronger storm.  Consequently, the way to adapt to weather, climate, and climate change is to foster economic growth, not to simply send money.

Near the end of each conference there’s the requisite foot-stamping.  This year, these countries and the myriad environmental groups “walked out” in protest over the lack of action (i.e. money).

On the last scheduled day, (this year it was November 22), a vague draft “agreement” usually appears and news leaks of a “deadlock” between the developed and less-developed world.  The attendees to stay overtime, usually overnight, and a breakthrough  is announced.

Then nothing happens until next year.

Wait for the uptick in editorials about “it’s serious this time,” the breathless news stories and op-eds in the dinosaur media, their shredding in the blogosphere, and you’ll know the next UN climate confab is about to begin.


Australia's Environment Protection Agency sidelined after warning of high risks at AGL coal seam gas project

The NSW government has sidelined the Environment Protection Authority in pushing ahead with a coal seam gas project despite advice it is high risk, threatening valuable agricultural land.

In a submission that has been confidential until now, the EPA warned the Department of Trade against approving the disposal of waste water at AGL's Gloucester project as it would lead to dangerously high salt levels and the potential destruction of farmland.

Fairfax Media has learnt the EPA has been excluded from the approvals process for irrigation trials at Gloucester, after effectively being sidelined by the newly created Office of Coal Seam Gas.

The EPA was asked by the Department of Trade to undertake a review of AGL's Gloucester coal seam gas project in February last year. It made its submission in April but the report has been confidential since then, even though the irrigation trials have begun.

In its report, the EPA says the project is high risk and is likely to produce dangerously high salt levels under the present AGL proposal to "irrigate", or spray. the water from its mining onto surrounding farmland.  It also warns of the damaging effects on local wildlife.

The submission says the government needs to ask for more information from AGL and that it is not possible to evaluate the effects on soil and water unless "adequate" information is provided by AGL.

Should the project continue as planned, 2500 tonnes of salt a year will be sprayed over the surrounding farmland, an outcome that independent geo-technical engineer Professor Philip Pells said could be disastrous for the environment.

Professor Pells is not anti-CSG. He approves of the AGL operations at Camden but said the geology at Gloucester was more sensitive as the basin structure beneath the project means the underground aquifers are "intimately connected" with the surface water.

Further, he said, AGL had no proper procedures for disposal of the saline waste water.

For its part, AGL has said the disposal of waste water from its CSG mining will have a "neutral or beneficial effect on water quality".

It has also disputed the EPA's findings that the soil was "strongly sodic", saying that referred to the natural soil quality at the location, which was no longer relevant as the company had treated the soils.

"AGL has added many hundreds of tonnes of compost, lime (calcium carbonate), gypsum (calcium sulphate) and zeolite minerals (which enhances the water retention quality of soils) and therefore the soil characteristics of the upper soils are now very different to the natural soil quality. These amended soils are now much more suitable for irrigation activities."

An EPA spokeswoman said the authority was assessing the application from AGL for an environment protection licence for the total Gloucester coal seam gas project, but not the trial.

"The EPA will take water and soil impacts and other relevant environmental considerations into account as part of its assessment."

EPA chief environmental regulator Mark Gifford said the irrigation trial was approved and was being overseen by the NSW Office of Coal Seam Gas.

"The EPA is being ignored," Professor Pells said. "No one appears to be in control.  "The trials were approved by the Department of Mineral Resources but now the process seems to have been taken over by the Office of Coal Seam Gas."

A spokeswoman for the Department of Industry said the water approved for irrigation was "two to five times less salty than water in the surrounding surface aquifers that also flow into the Avon River".

"It is the responsibility of AGL to conduct the trial within the approved guidelines," she said. "The risks are minimal and the monitoring and reporting is showing that the project is proceeding within the parameters of the approval."



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  

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