Friday, December 27, 2013
Arctic Polar Ice Cap Reverses Shrinking Trend
An unusually cool summer in the Arctic has led to almost 50 percent more sea ice covering the polar region this fall than the year before.
Measurements from Europe’s CryoSat spacecraft reveal that about 2,160 cubic miles of sea ice covered the Arctic in late October.
That’s up from the 1,440 cubic miles that CryoSat measured during the record low for the ice in 2012.
Scientists say that about 90 percent of the increase is due to growth of multiyear ice, which is thick enough to last through more than one summer without melting.
“Although the recovery of Arctic sea ice is certainly welcome news, it has to be considered against the backdrop of changes that have occurred over the last few decades,” said Andy Shepherd of University College London.
He told the BBC that there were about 4,800 cubic miles of Arctic sea ice each October during the early 1980s, decades before a rapid warming of the polar region brought unprecedented melting.
NASA Satellite Data Contradict ‘Warmest November’ Claims
Global warming activists claim this November was the warmest on record, yet NASA and NOAA satellite data show temperatures were only modestly warmer than average. The discrepancy highlights global warming activists’ desire to have not only their own opinions, but their own facts as well.
NASA satellite instruments report November 2013 was merely the ninth warmest since 1979, when NASA satellites first began uniformly measuring Earth’s atmospheric temperatures. Microwave sounders aboard NOAA satellites report November 2013 was merely the 16th warmest since 1979.
The NASA and NOAA satellite instruments differ in the fine details of how they determine global temperatures. NASA satellite instruments, for example, report average temperatures in atmospheric layers while NOAA satellite instruments measure temperatures at specific levels. The NASA and NOAA satellite instruments each measure temperatures precisely and globally, and they each show temperatures warming more slowly than the warming claimed by overseers of NASA and NOAA’s surface temperature reports.
The NASA and NOAA surface temperature reports claim a more pronounced warming trend even though the surface temperature measurements themselves show only modest warming. Global warming activists who oversee the surface temperature data employ a variety of means to lower historical temperature readings below the raw measurements while raising recent and current temperatures above the raw measurements. The result is a manufactured rapid warming trend that defies the satellite data and the raw surface temperature data.
Steve Goddard’s Real Science website shows the satellite temperature reports for November 2013 compared to alarmist claims that November 2013 was the warmest November on record.
How far should we trust models?
The article below is by a Warmist but even he can see how much uncertainty there is in modelling
As computer modelling has become essential to more and more areas of science, it has also become at least a partial guide to headline-grabbing policy issues, from flood control and the conserving of fish stocks, to climate change and — heaven help us — the economy. But do politicians and officials understand the limits of what these models can do? Are they all as good, or as bad, as each other? If not, how can we tell which is which?
In this new world of computer modelling, an oft-quoted remark made in the 1970s by the statistician George Box remains a useful rule of thumb: ‘all models are wrong, but some are useful’. He meant, of course, that while the new simulations should never be mistaken for the real thing, their features might yet inform us about aspects of reality that matter.
‘The art is to find an approximation simple enough to be computable, but not so simple that you lose the useful detail.’
Because it’s usually easy to perform experiments in chemistry, molecular simulations have developed in tandem with accumulating lab results and enormous increases in computing speed. It is a powerful combination.
More often, though — and more worryingly for policymakers — models and simulations crop up in domains where experimentation is harder in practice, or impossible in principle. And when testing against reality is not an option, our confidence in any given model relies on other factors, not least a good grasp of underlying principles.
[W]e seem increasingly to be discussing results from models of natural phenomena that are neither well-understood, nor likely to respond to our tampering in any simple way. [A]s Naomi Oreskes notes, we used such models to study systems that are too large, too complex, or too far away to tackle any other way. That makes the models indispensable, as the alternative is plain guessing. But it also brings new dimensions of uncertainty.
First, you might be a bit hazy about the inputs derived from observations — the tedious but important stuff of who measured what, when, and whether the measurements were reliable. Then there are the processes represented in the model that are well understood but can’t be handled precisely because they happen on the wrong scale. Simulations typically concern continuous processes that are sampled to furnish data — and calculations — that you can actually work with. But what if significant things happen below the sampling size? Fluid flow, for instance, produces atmospheric eddies on the scale of a hurricane, down to the draft coming through your window. In theory, they can all be modelled using the same equations. But while a climate modeller can include the large ones, the smaller scales can be approximated only if the calculation is ever going to end.
Finally, there are the processes that aren’t well-understood — climate modelling is rife with these. Modellers deal with them by putting in simplifications and approximations that they refer to as parameterisation. They work hard at tuning parameters to make them more realistic, and argue about the right values, but some fuzziness always remains.
When the uncertainties are harder to characterise, evaluating a model depends more on stepping back, I think, and asking what kind of community it emerges from. Is it, in a word, scientific? And what does that mean for this new way of doing science?
What’s more, the earth system is imperfectly understood, so uncertainties abound; even aspects that are well-understood, such as fluid flow equations, challenge the models. Tim Palmer, professor in climate physics at the University of Oxford, says the equations are the mathematical equivalent of a Russian doll: they unpack in such a way that a simple governing equation is actually shorthand for billions and billions of equations. Too many for even the fastest computers.
Fracking Saves Water
Contrary to the conventional teachings of environmentalists, hydraulic fracturing (i.e., fracking) has at least one major environmental benefit: saving water.
Although most Americans are disturbingly ignorant about fracking, it is an issue of critical importance not only with respect to the environment but also in foreign policy and the economy. Typically, the debate is framed around priorities. If you care more about the environment, you are against fracking; but if you care more about energy independence and domestic economic opportunities, you are for fracking.
However, a new study out of the University of Texas at Austin - one of the top schools in the world for studying energy and engineering - disrupts the usual dichotomy. In a world where more and more climate change scientists are concerned about the effects of drought, the latest research shows that the water-intensive fracking method of extracting natural gas actually saves water overall.
Climate Central has the details (emphasis mine):
"Electricity produced using natural gas combustion turbines and natural gas combined-cycle generators requires roughly 30 percent of the water needed for coal power plants. The study estimates that the amount of water saved by shifting a power plant from coal to natural gas is up to 50 times the amount of water lost in fracking to extract the natural gas from underground shale formations.
The study’s authors estimate that for every gallon of water used to frack for natural gas, Texas saved 33 gallons of water by using that gas for electricity generation rather than producing the same amount of power with coal. During the 2011 drought, if Texas’ natural gas-fired power plants had generated electricity with coal, the state would have consumed an additional 32 billion gallons of water, or enough to supply about 870,000 people with water, accounting for water used for fracking, according to the study."
Environmental activists have long pushed for an end to fracking in America, or at least a drastic increase in governmental regulations. If they are truly concerned with climate change, the recent research should make them think twice.
Podesta to carry out the Obama Doctrine
“Canada is a sovereign nation and we will develop our resources with appropriate regulations and enforcement to protect the environment,” said Paula Caldwell St-Onge. The Consulate General of Canada, St-Onge was in Albuquerque to talk up, and answer questions about, the Keystone pipeline.
She’d done media interviews prior to her arrival at the University of New Mexico Science and Technology Park where a smattering of aggressive, sign-waving Keystone opponents awaited. Security escorted St-Onge from the parking lot to the meeting room.
I, too, was addressing the folks who’d come in support of the controversial pipeline.
Sans security, I approached the rotunda alone. (Guards were present to keep the protesters from accosting the attendees who were bold enough to continue past the cluster of vocal opponents shouting accusations about “ruining the planet for the children.”)
When I passed by, one called out: “That’s Marita Noon! She supports the oil-and-gas industry! She doesn’t believe in climate change!” Basking in my newfound celebrity, I turned, smiled, and waved as if I was greeting adoring fans — and entered the building.
I was the first speaker, followed by Bill Eden, international representative of the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States and Canada. St-Onge rounded out the trio.
Always the optimist, I opened with: “This is an exciting time to be alive!” and addressed the fact that we were on the cusp of achieving the holy grail of energy security that had eluded decades of American presidents. I pointed out how the Keystone pipeline was an important part of that goal. I talked about my visit to the Canadian oil sands and Mexico’s new energy reforms. I bragged about New Mexico’s energy riches.
I looked at St-Onge and repeated my frequent prediction that Keystone would not be approved under the Obama Administration. I stated: “We know that Obama doesn’t care about Republicans. We know he doesn’t care about the oil-and-gas industry. We may even question whether or not he cares about America. But he does care about his base—and, of his base, there are only two groups who care about the Keystone pipeline.” I asked the audience who those two groups were. They rightly asserted: “environmentalists” and “unions.”
I, then, explained what I call the Obama Doctrine — his primary mode of operation: “Reward your friends, punish your opposition.” With a shrug, I told them, “You don’t need to know anything more than that to know that Keystone will not be approved.”
At first the audience was puzzled — after all, both the environmentalists and the unions are “friends” of the Administration. I asked: “What have the unions done lately?” And answered: “Publically embarrassed Obama on his signature legislation.” The lights came on.
I backed up my view with a quote from the December 14 New York Times regarding John Podesta’s return to the White House: “his very presence could influence Mr. Obama’s thinking on the proposed pipeline from Canada’s oil sands — even though Mr. Podesta has said that he will recuse himself from the final decision because the liberal think tank he founded 10 years ago, the Center for American Progress, has been unsparingly critical of the entire enterprise.”
When St-Onge took the platform, she pointed to me and, in a jovial manner, said: “Marita, I hope you are wrong.” I called out: “I hope I am too! And, I hate to be wrong.”
All the while, the protesters were outside — at first pressing their signs against the windows (until the blinds were closed) and then shouting through a megaphone in a failed attempt to disrupt the meeting.
Fortunately, I’d had major plumbing problems at my home that morning. I am not happy that I had to leave two plumbers in my house when I headed off to speak at the Keystone meeting, but dealing with the problems prevented me from reading the pages of research I’d printed out on John Podesta and his views on the Keystone pipeline. I read them later in the day, on the plane on the way to join my family for Christmas.
Had I read everything I had on Podesta, I couldn’t have started with: “This is an exciting time to be alive!” I couldn’t have been my usual, positive, cheerleading self.
While I’ve been pessimistic about the future of the Keystone pipeline, I’ve spoken and written optimistically about America’s overall energy position and related politics. I’ve touted the increased domestic oil-and-gas development. I’ve pointed out the general demise of the climate change argument and the failure of Europe’s green energy policies. I’ve talked up the good-paying jobs provided by the energy industry. I’ve been encouraged by the changing politics in the other countries of the Anglosphere. I’ve said: “With my ear to the ground, I see good things coming…” But, with Podesta’s return to the White House as an advisor specializing in energy policy, I must admit my optimism was misplaced. I’ve been wrong. And, I hate to be wrong.
Having read extensively on Podesta and his policies, if I was giving the speech today, I’d have to start with: “Be afraid. Be very afraid.”
The Daily Caller (DC) starts an article on Podesta’s White House return this way: “John Podesta’s return to the White House should have oil, gas and coal producers worried.” He is a former lobbyist and chief of staff to President Clinton. He is the founder of the liberal think tank the Center for American Progress (CAP) — which Bloomberg news called “an intellectual wellspring for Democratic policy proposals.” Many Obama staffers and policies have come from CAP. The DC says: “In 2010, Podesta wrote the foreword for a CAP report on how the president could use his executive authority to advance a progressive agenda, including actions to unilaterally force the U.S. economy to become greener.” CAP and the name Podesta have come up repeatedly in the Green-energy Crony-corruption Scandal that I’ve covered extensively with Christine Lakatos.
The New York Times states: “Mr. Podesta’s main task will be to give the Environmental Protection Agency the support it needs to devise new rules controlling greenhouse gases from new and existing power plants.” And, “He will further elevate the issue of climate change.” The New Yorker Magazine’s coverage of the Podesta position agrees: “Podesta’s climate-change portfolio will therefore be limited largely to overseeing the implementation of E.P.A. regulations.”
Regarding Podesta’s role, The Hill reports: it’s “likely to include administration decisions about how to lease out federal lands and which energy development and mining projects to permit.” It also cites Jay Carney as saying: “Podesta will help implement ‘executive actions where necessary when we can’t get cooperation out of Congress.’” And, states: “Officials and outside energy groups are particularly optimistic he’ll be able to advance the administration’s environmental agenda through administrative policy.” According to the New Yorker, Podesta believes that Obama needs “to be expansive in his use of executive power.”
Specifically addressing the Keystone pipeline, Podesta has said: “I think he should not approve it. I’m of the view that you just can’t meet the standard now that Obama set out: Does it or does it not significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution? What are the net effects? And I think a fair review of that would say the net effects are big and they’re negative.” The New Yorker ends its “Podesta and the Pipeline” report with this: “If Obama approves the project, he will have to do so knowing that he is contradicting the assessment of his new climate-change adviser.” The Washington Free Beacon (WFB) claims: “President Obama has consigned Keystone to bureaucratic purgatory.”
According to the DC, the Keystone pipeline is: “A minor concern when compared to the potential regulatory onslaught that Podesta could unleash from within the White House” — about which the WFB coined the term “Regicide.”
Yes, oil, gas and coal producers should be worried — and the individuals and industries that count on America’s abundant, available and affordable energy should be afraid, very afraid.
OPEN LETTER CHALLENGES AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTER ON FRAUDULENT CLIMATE CLAIMS
Written by Dr Judy Ryan & Dr Marjorie Curtis
Below is a letter from Drs Judy Ryan and Marjorie Curtis to Mr Mark Scott, the Managing Director of the Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC). Up to 200 political, media and other interested, or possibly, concerned, parties such as the BBC, are openly copied in. Mr Scott is the first member of the Australian public to to be held accountable by public letter.ABC
Judy and Marjorie have been holding prominent Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW) alarmists such as David Karoly, Tim Flannery, Will Steffen and Lesley Hughes individually accountable for close to one year now. The letters and email lists are on Judy’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/judy.ryan.75457?fref=browse_search. They will also be on the Galileo Movement Facebook page soon.
As many interested parties are openly copied in; the lack of response from the alarmist does not look good on the public record. A legitimate question is:- Why don’t they respond with the evidence to support their hypothesis? It should be easy. The case for holding CAGW alarmists individually accountable is building.
Sunday, 15 December 2013
Mr. Mark Scott
Australian Broadcasting Corporation GPO Box 9994
Sydney NSW 2001
Dear Mr. Scott:
We are writing this public email to you to express our concern regarding the biased, inadequate, incorrect, and alarmist reporting by the ABC on the subject of ‘Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming’ (CAGW), or any other weather related event.
We notice that you were made aware of this matter on the 15th February 2013 by notice delivered by registered post from Mr. Malcolm Roberts http://www.conscious.com.au/docs/letters/ABC-ManagingDirector.pdf.
In that notice you were asked to ensure that unless you, as the managing director of the ABC, have empirical scientific evidence that damaging warming is caused by human emissions of CO2, the ABC should cease making direct or implied public claims that it is. You were also requested to retract past such claims and associated claims if you did not have the evidence to back them up. You were further requested to ensure that future ABC broadcasts on climate and the environment be objective, factual, balanced and correct.”
You did not respond to that notice or act upon any of the reasonable requests therein. Under your stewardship, the ABC has continued the policy of biased alarmist, reporting on CAGW. As the ABC chief executive receiving a handsome salary from the taxpayers you are the one person most responsible for ensuring that the ABC reports truthfully, factually and in accordance with the ABC Charter.
As managing director of the ABC you are required to provide reliable, evidence-based information. That means no exaggeration of effects, no misleading allegations and no omission of evidence that does not support the CAGW hypothesis.
The definition of fraud is, according to Black’s Law Dictionary, quote: “a false representation of a matter of fact, whether by words or by conduct, by false or misleading allegations, or by concealment of that which should have been disclosed, which deceives and is intended to deceive another so that he shall act upon it to his legal injury.”
The Australian people are experiencing financial disadvantage as a result of the Carbon Tax/ETS/Direct Action Policy and a host of other policies and administrative decisions driven by advice regarding the science of climate change. Much of that advice has been reported to the people via the ABC under your stewardship. Is that advice false or misleading? Does it deceive by concealing relevant facts? Has the ABC reported the evidence for and against CAGW in a balanced impartial manner?
A recent example of the ABC reporting (Dec 3rd 2013) can be seen here; http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2013/s3903815.htm
Another example; http://australianconservative.com/2010/03/their-abc-gags-bob-carter/
Under Australia’s strong democracy no one is above the law. Judges, politicians, scientists, academics, senior public servants, and managing directors can be held to account for breaching their fiduciary duty.
For this reason it is important that you read and respond to the evidence provided below:-
The first few bullet points are links to the evidence for the null hypothesis versus CAGW. They are three references out of many, many thousands.
Wolfgang Knorr (no significant change in the airborne fraction of human caused CO2 since 1850) http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2009GL040613/abstract
Murry Salby (temperature, not man-made CO2, drives CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. ) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YrI03ts--9I&feature=player_embedded
Since replicated by Pehr Björnbom http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com.au/2013/07/swedish-scientist-replicates-dr-murry.html
Roy Spencer and John Christie (all the IPCC models have failed validity testing) http://www.drroyspencer.com/2013/06/epic-fail-73-climate-models-vs-observations-for-tropical-tropospheric-temperature/
Green, Armstrong and Soon found that errors in the projections of the IPCC’s scenario of exponential CO2 growth for the years 1851 to 1975 were more than seven times greater than the errors from a no change from previous year extrapolation method.). http://econpapers.repec.org/article/eeeintfor/v_3a25_3ay_3a2009_3ai_3a4_3ap_3a826-832.htm
The next few bullet points provide the evidence that indicates that from as early as 1998 there was no overwhelming scientific consensus supporting CAGW. There are only a few studies that claim to have measured overwhelming scientific consensus for CAGW. We have read them and their critiques. The two main earlier ones are:-
(1) Doran and Zimmerman http://probeinternational.org/library/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/012009_Doran_final1.pdf (where the researchers selectively whittled down a sample of over 10,000 geologists to just 77 then measured scientific consensus on the basis of two questions neither of which mentioned carbon-dioxide).
(2) The Anderegg et al study 2010 was not a survey. It was merely a methodologically flawed, subjective count and categorisation of publications. (Ref ‘Taxing Air 2013 ‘by Robert Carter and John Spooner).
(3) The 2013 study by Cook et. al. is also a methodologically flawed count and categorisation of publications. http://joannenova.com.au/2013/08/richard-tol-half-cooks-data-still-hidden-rest-shows-result-is-incorrect-invalid-unrepresentative.
By contrast there are several robust measures of scientific rebuttal of CAGW
The online petition which was launched in 1998 by the first group of dissenting scientists and has over 31,000 scientists signatures http://www.petitionproject.org
The annual reports of the Non Governmental panel for Climate Change NIPCC (which is a scientific body founded in 2003 ) http://climatechangereconsidered.org/about-nipcc/#tabs-1-2
Various other methodologically sound surveys
The next few bullet points refer to evidence that indicates that CAGW is the current politically driven global scam.
Climate gate Emails 2009 (their content reveals scientific misconduct. The various investigations that found no misconduct BUT found that those scientists had refused to share their supporting data which shows a lack of transparency inconsistent with good science) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climatic_Research_Unit_email_controversy
Armstrong, Green and Soon (Their audit found that the IPCC procedures violated as many as 72 of the 89 relevant forecasting principles (p. 997))http://www.forecastingprinciples.com/files/WarmAudit31.pdf
Kesten Green (identified 26 historical alarmist movements. (None of the forecasts proved correct. Twenty-five alarms involved calls for government intervention. The government imposed regulations in 23. None of the 23 interventions was effective and harm was caused by 20 of them.) http://www.ipa.org.au/publications/1964/a-history-of-scientific-alarms
Impending legal action a possibility (John Coleman’s interview) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9HOlS0PPcw .
In our opinion the ABC is deteriorating into a malicious, self -interest group, led by you. As recent events have shown, you are prepared to place the security of the ABC’s salary structure above the national security of Australia and its people.
You have allowed senior ABC journalists to conduct a smear campaign against scientists and citizens who are skeptical of CAGW. http://catallaxyfiles.com/2012/12/18/will-maurice-newman-be-australias-lord-mcalpine-ii/
Having digested all of the above we allow you 21 days to either publicly renounce your alarmist claims on the ABC news, or publicly provide empirical data-based evidence, that is available for scientific scrutiny, to support them.
It is on the public record that we issued a similar opportunity to Professor David Karoly in March this year. You received a copy by registered post with delivery confirmation. As we said in that letter, if CAGW turns out to be a politically driven scientific scam “every day that you delay is one day longer that the Australian people will hold you accountable”.
In closing, if there is anything we have said that you think is untrue please click reply all and let us know and we will apologise.
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.
Preserving the graphics: Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere. But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases. After that they no longer come up. 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 or here
Posted by JR at 9:52 PM