Monday, March 16, 2015

By what right?

By the right of the First Amendment for starters -- followed by the right to point out that the scientific consensus is often wrong and eventually has to be abandoned

John Kerry:

“Science tells us that when the water temperature drops below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, it turns to ice. No one disputes that,” he said. ”So when science tells us that our climate is changing and human beings are largely causing that change, by what right do people stand up and just say, ‘well, I dispute that, or I deny that elementary truth?'"

“And yet there are those that do so,” he said.

Kerry spoke for nearly an hour at the Atlantic Council, and insisted that the science behind climate change is settled.

“It may seem obvious to you, but it isn’t to some,” he said. “The science is and has and long been crystal clear when it comes to climate change.” [Crystal clear?  Crystal-ball clear more like it]

“If we make the switch to a global clean energy economy … if we think more creatively about how we power our cars, heat our homes, operate our businesses, then we still have time to prevent the worst consequences of climate change,” he said. “It really is as simple as that.”


Environmentalism, a theory of natural limits, is intrinsically pro-austerity; to be anti-austerity and environmentalist is a contradiction in terms

Yet Green/Left politicians from Greece to Britain are railing against austerity.  They are not acknowledging their self-contradictions

All three of them were there: UK prime minister and Tory leader David Cameron, his deputy and Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg, and Labour leader Ed Miliband. It was only a few weeks ago, too. The General Election was meant to be looming, the arguments and debates hotting up. But, no, there they all were, green NGO lobbyists lurking in the background, signing a joint pledge to fight climate change regardless of who won the election. This was all about agreement, consensus. As far as Cam, Cleggers and the Miliband brother were concerned, the issue of climate change and its policy imperatives, such as carbon budgets and ‘the transition to a low-carbon economy’, were simply not up for argument. In effect, they agreed to put climate change beyond debate.

If you ever needed a more striking example of just how little separates the different brands of the political class, it’s this politics-defying moment: three fortysomething, corporate-suited men-about-Westminster all agreeing that there are some things you just can’t talk about in front of the electorate.

It was a shockingly undemocratic moment. But not a surprising one. The fortunes of what was to become environmentalism may have waxed and waned ever since reactionary cleric Thomas Malthus first suggested, in the late eighteenth century, that there are natural limits to what Enlightenment philosophes’ posited as unlimited social and material progress. But, with the slowdown of Western economies from the 1970s onwards, environmentalist sentiment, the belief that human society has gone as far as it can and should, has gradually come to dominate the worldview of Western elites. Hence it is now effectively the ideology of the West’s clueless, futureless political leaders.

And little wonder. Environmentalism didn’t just rationalise away economic stagnation as something natural (with the growth of the financial services sector, and a series of credit-pumped bubbles providing illusory optimistic interludes). It turned the potential failure materially to advance society, to grow the economy, into something almost virtuous, something that mightn’t be such a bad thing. Born from Malthus’s opposition to Enlightenment reason, an opposition to the confidence in man’s ability to master nature, and to drag society towards a gleaming, ever-more prosperous, ever-freer future, environmentalism, in its late twentieth and early twenty-first-century incarnations, allowed Western leaders to disavow all that Enlightenment baggage, to recast modernity as something rapaciously industrial, tyrannical and hubristic. We should know our place. Not championing growth became virtuous. Not seeking to master nature became wise. And consuming and producing less? That became the dream.

So the fact that the UK’s three party-political amigos showed the depth of their commitment to environmentalism and ‘fighting climate change’ by attempting to de-politicise it was really only to be expected. It is their ideology, their grand narrative. The avoidance of a scorched and sunken dystopia is the closest Cameron and pals have to a big, unifying idea, the end that makes sense of all their low-fi policies, be it diminished energy production, limited house building or no-growth economics. They can as little do without environmentalist sentiment as they can PR consultants. It makes sense of their role.

But there’s something else going on, too. Back in the mid-2000s, when the papers were daily full of green-tinted End of Days predictions, Lord Stern’s economics-of-climate-change dirges excited the Guardian-subscribing classes and people actually bothered to read the latest IPCC report, politicians were desperate to display their climate-change-fighting credentials. So in 2006, a pre-prime-ministerial David Cameron was hugging huskies in the Arctic, a pre-prime ministerial Gordon Brown was making climate change his big cause at the Fabian Society’s annual conference, and a never-to-be-prime-minister David Miliband was talking excitedly of prioritising ‘carbon thrift, as well as economic thrift’. Consume less, cut back and make do - that was the mantra.

The commentariat also seemed militantly environmentalist. A columnist writing in the Financial Times in 2006 argued that ‘rationing provides the best solution to the problem of reducing carbon emissions quickly, dramatically and equitably’. In the New Statesman one writer argued, in a piece called ‘Why we must ration the future’, that because ‘carbon rationing represents a total break with business as usual… it is the only climate-change policy that will work’. In 2007, the Guardian’s George Monbiot boasted that environmentalism was a ‘campaign not for abundance but for austerity’. ‘Bring on the recession’, he said.

But that militancy ceased, and that party-political enthusiasm for all things green became more muted, less strident, as the economic crisis and subsequent recession unfolded. So why has environmentalism retreated behind semi-closed doors? Because it has been a victim of its own miserable success. The limiting, the cutting back, the restraint, the austerity, all of which had been called for with such grim glee before 2008, had now become a reluctant reality. To promote environmentalist thinking with the same vigour in the midst of the recession now just sounds like an endorsement of the recession – which, effectively, it always was.

But that poses a problem for politicians who at least want to offer the promise to the electorate, albeit in bad faith, that things might get better. And it poses a problem for reactionary lefties, who embraced environmentalist tropes with such opportunist anti-capitalist glee before 2008, but who now want to challenge austerity. Environmentalism, a theory of natural limits, is intrinsically pro-austerity; to be anti-austerity and environmentalist is a contradiction in terms.

This is one of the great unspoken paradoxes of contemporary politics. Ahead of the General Election, the very same politicians and commentators who once displayed their environmentalist credentials, their restrain ’em and ration ’em sentiments, with such pride, now claim to be vehemently anti-austerity. Miliband recently ramped up his anti-austerity gurning, moaning about how much ‘Tory cuts’ are taking away from British men and women. Monbiot raged against ‘the continued implementation of austerity’. Even Green Party leader Natalie Bennett, who had been let out for the day at the Greens’ spring conference, called for an ‘end [to] the failed austerity experiment’.

Yet, behind the big-spending bluster, through the fug of anti-austerity posing, this same elite network remain absolutely shot through with environmentalist thinking, the same thinking that calls on us to change our behaviour, to ration our consumption, to accept the limits to growth. The same thinking that disavows Enlightenment and modernity as just so much human-centric error. And someone like Miliband asks us to believe he’s opposed to austerity. Is he having a laugh? One minute he’s denouncing the nasty Tories for their austerity regime, the next he’s pledging his commitment to the ‘fight against climate change’ in coalition with Cam and Cleggers.

This isn’t a problem confined to the UK. We’ve seen it in Europe, where parties like Syriza pose as the enemies of austerity while embracing every green-hued prejudice going. It’s a profound and troublesome contradiction, and it’s one that needs to be overcome. Because the biggest impediment to a genuinely anti-austerity, pro-abundance politics is not Cameron or so-called neoliberalism; it’s the environmentalism that, for too long, has held Western political elites in its baleful thrall.


Solar power propaganda vs. the real world

By Marita Noon

solar panel installationWhen a former “senior communications official at the White House” writes a blog post for U.S. News and World Report, you should be able to trust it. But when the author states that the Keystone pipeline (should it be approved) would create only 19 weeks of temporary jobs, everything else he says must be suspect — including the claim that our “energy infrastructure will be 100 percent solar by 2030.”

I contacted both a union representative and one from TransCanada — the company behind the Keystone pipeline. Each affirmed that the 19-week timeframe was total fantasy. The portion of the Keystone pipeline that remains to be built is 1179 miles long — the vast majority of that within the U.S.— with construction expected to take two years.

TransCanada’s spokesperson Mark Cooper responded to my query: “While some people belittle these jobs as temporary, we know that without temporary construction jobs — and the hard work of the men and women who do them — we wouldn’t have roads, highways, schools or hospitals. We wouldn’t have the Empire State Building, the Golden Gate Bridge, or the Hoover Dam. So, I would say to these detractors: ‘It is OK if you don’t like or support Keystone XL. But let’s stop putting down the very people who have helped build America.’”

The premise of the On the Edge blog post is that we shouldn’t look at Keystone as a jobs creator. Instead, the author claims, the jobs are in “solar energy disruption.” He is frustrated that “GOP leaders almost universally ignore or disdain this emerging energy economy.”

He states: “A third of all new electric generation in 2014 came from solar. A new solar installation or project now occurs somewhere in the U.S. — built by a team of American workers employed in the fastest growing energy sector in the world — every three minutes.”

This may be true but, as you’ll see, it belies several important details. Plenty of cause exists for Republican lawmakers to “disdain” the growth in renewable energy.

If “a third of all new electric generation in 2014 came from solar,” there is reason for it—and it does not include sound economics.

First, efficient and effective base-load, coal-fueled electricity that has provided the bulk of America’s power is being prematurely shut down by regulations prompted by environmental lobbyists and promulgated by the Obama Administration. It is virtually impossible to get a new coal-fueled power plant permitted in the U.S. Even natural gas-powered plants, such as the one planned to replace the Salem Harbor coal-fueled plant, meet with resistance from groups such as Grassroots Against Another Salem Plant, which “has pledged to use peaceful civil disobedience to block construction of the gas plant.” And, of course, just try to build a nuclear power plant, and all the fear-mongers come out.

What’s left? Renewables, such as wind and solar, receive favorable treatment through a combination of mandates and subsidies. Even industrial wind and solar have their own opposition within the environmental lobby groups because they chop up and fry birds and bats— including protected bald and golden eagles.

The brand new report, Solar Power in the U.S. (SPUS), presents a comprehensive look at the impacts of solar power on the nation’s consumers.

Clearly, without the mandates and subsidies, this “solar energy disruption” would go dark.

We’ve seen companies, such as Solyndra, Abound Solar, and Evergreen Solar, go bankrupt even with millions of dollars in state and federal (taxpayer) assistance. I’ve written extensively on these stories and that of Abengoa—which received the largest federal loan guarantee ($2.8 billion) and has resorted to questionable business practices to keep the doors open (Abengoa is currently under investigation from several federal agencies).

SPUS shows that without the subsidies and mandates these renewable projects can’t survive. For example, in Australia, sales of solar systems “fell as soon as the incentives were cut back.” Since the Australian government announced that it was reconsidering its Renewable Energy Targets, “investments have started to dry up.”

Knowing the importance of the “incentives,” the solar industry has now become a major campaign donor, providing political pressure and money to candidates, who will bring on more mandates, subsidies, and tax credits. Those candidates are generally Democrats, as one of the key differences between the two parties is that Democrats tend to support government involvement. By contrast, Republicans lean toward limited government and the free market. The GOP doesn’t “disdain” solar, but they know it only survives because of government mandates that require a certain percentage of renewables, and specifically solar, in the energy mix, plus the subsidies and tax credits that make it attractive. Therefore, they can’t get excited about the jobs being created as a result of taxpayers’ involuntary investment, nor higher energy costs. There is a big difference between disdaining solar power and disdaining the government involvement that gives it an unfair advantage in the marketplace.

The blog post compares the “solar energy disruption” to what “occurred when direcTV and Dish started to compete with cable television. More choices emerged and a whole lot of new jobs were created.” However, those jobs were created through private investment and the free market—a fact that, along with solar’s dependence on incentives, he never mentions. Likewise, the jobs supported by building the Keystone pipeline would be through private funding.

The blog’s author touts this claim, from the book Clean Disruption: “Should solar continue on its exponential trajectory, the energy infrastructure will be 100 percent solar by 2030”—15 years from now. Even if state and federal governments were to continue to pour money into solar energy—which, as is pointed out in SPUS, subsidies are already being dialed back on a variety of fronts—there is no currently available solution to solar’s intermittency.

SPUS draws upon the example of Germany, which has led the way globally in solar and other renewables. Over time, the high renewable penetration has contributed to residential electricity prices more than doubling. Renewables received favored status, called “priority dispatch,” which means that, when renewable electricity becomes available, the utilities must dispatch it first, thereby changing the merit order for thermal plants. Now many modern, natural gas-fueled plants, as well as coal, couldn’t operate profitably. As a result, many were shut down, while several plants were provided “capacity payments” by the government (a double subsidy) in order to stay online as back-up—which maintains system stability. In Germany’s push for 80 percent renewable energy by 2050, it has found that despite the high penetration of renewables, given their inherent intermittency, a large amount of redundancy of coal- and natural-gas-fueled electricity (nuclear being decommissioned) is necessary to maintain the reliability of the grid.

As the German experience makes clear, without a major technological breakthrough to store electricity generated through solar systems, “100 percent solar by 2030” is just one more fantasy.

The blog post ends with this: “the GOP congressional leadership ignores these new jobs inside an innovative, disruptive energy sector that is about to sweep across the country it leads—in favor of a vanishingly small number of mythical Keystone ‘jobs’ that may never materialize. It makes you wonder. Why?”

The answers can be found in SPUS, which addresses the policy, regulatory, and consumer protection issues that have manifested themselves through the rapid rise of solar power and deals with many more elements than covered here. It concludes: “Solar is an important part of our energy future, but there must be forethought, taking into account future costs, jobs, energy reliability and the overall energy infrastructure already in place. This technology must come online with the needs of the taxpayer, consumer and ratepayer in mind instead of giving the solar industry priority.”


Five reasons Britons shouldn’t vote Green

Anti-growth, anti-human and bizarrely pro-horse riding: a Green government would be awful.

With the UK General Election only a couple of months away, there has been much discussion about the Green Party’s growth in popularity. This is something that both the Greens’ supporters and their detractors are putting down to disaffected Labour voters going in search of a progressive, left-wing party that fights for the interests of ordinary people.

In the 2010 election, then Green Party leader Caroline Lucas won the Greens their first seat in parliament, and netted them just under one per cent of the nationwide vote. Despite current leader Natalie Bennett’s recent car-crash interview on LBC, and a subsequent string of unimpressive performances, some polls suggest the Greens could win up to 11 per cent of the vote in this election, giving rise to what people are calling the ‘green surge’. But this surge is based on a sham. The Green Party is not now, nor has it ever been, a progressive party. Here’s five reasons why.

1) The Greens are Malthusians

Thomas Malthus is about as far from a progressive man of the people as you can get: the eighteenth-century cleric’s central idea was that the poor must be prevented from reproducing in order to stem overpopulation. And yet Malthusianism is the foundation of Green Party politics. The party was born in the early Seventies, when a middle-class couple from Coventry came across an article on overpopulation in Playboy. Solicitor Lesley Whittaker and her husband Tony, a former Tory councillor, decided something must be done. They formed the cloyingly named People Party – the Green Party’s first incarnation. The party subscribed to the Blueprint for Survival, a manifesto for sustainability by environmentalist Edward Goldsmith which, among other things, advocated deindustrialisation, a return to living in small peasant communities, the sterilisation of women and an end to all immigration. Up to the early Nineties, the Green Party, and its then spokesman David Icke (he of lizards-run-the-world fame), still wanted to reduce the UK’s population by 20million.

Over the past decade, the Greens have attempted to distance themselves from Malthus’s arguments – perhaps because the only other party advocating Malthusianism is the BNP. But although the Green Party’s recently published manifesto makes no mention of overpopulation, its website still has a population-policy page that talks about striving to achieve ‘sustainable population levels’. In order to do so, the page encourages people to live ‘sustainable lifestyles’ – ‘sustainable’, in this case, being a thinly veiled euphemism for ‘childless’.

2) The Greens are anti-growth and anti-abundance

As the Green Party has distanced itself from its Malthusian roots, it has had to look for another way to reduce the human footprint. And so it has focused on curtailing economic growth and people’s consumption habits. A growing economy that produces more employment, more material goods and a higher standard of living has always been considered a desirable and progressive aim. But the Greens are insisting that growth must stop. Apparently, poor people’s desire to live plusher, more comfortable lives is nothing more than greed.

The Green Party’s website tells us: ‘Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, society has expected continual increases in material affluence for the people of the world, and has therefore relentlessly pursued the goal of economic growth.’ In place of this, the Greens advocate a shift from material production and prosperity to something called ‘wellbeing’. The fact that prior to the Industrial Revolution the vast majority of people in the Western world lived in unimaginable poverty seems to have escaped the Greens.

3) The Greens hate science and infrastructure

There was a time when, if there was a water shortage, people might think of constructing a new reservoir. This isn’t how the Greens would like to do things. We’ve got to make do with what we have, remember? New, large-scale infrastructure is anathema to the Green ideology. You can’t go anywhere in Britain without seeing traces of the blight of human civilisation on the landscape, and the Green Party is having none of it. The new Green manifesto gloats that the party would spend nothing on improving roads or expanding airports. What’s more, it plans to continue to fight for two old Green favourites: bans on nuclear power and genetically modified crops.

4) Green taxes would hit the poor hardest

Many of the Greens’ killjoy policies, like shutting down zoos and banning alcohol on planes, would make everyone miserable, regardless of social standing. But despite the Green Party’s talk of redistributing wealth and creating a fairer society, most of the Greens’ proposed taxes would hit the poor the hardest.

Under the party’s proposals, goods and services would be taxed according to how much damage the party deems these products do to the environment. So, if you’re less well-off, you can say goodbye to your carbon-belching car and jetting off for foreign holidays; the Greens’ plan is to make these sorts of luxuries unaffordable for common folk. Instead, you’ll be told to walk or cycle. And if you’re elderly, disabled or just lazy, their 2015 manifesto tells us that ‘animal-powered transport, in particular horse-powered transport, is also sustainable’.

As for exotic luxuries like coffee, bananas and chocolate, these will be taxed beyond the reach of the average pleb. Maybe if you save up you can have them at Christmas. Oh, and booze: the Greens want to raise the price of all alcohol by 50 per cent.

5) People will always come second

Central to the Green ideology is the idea that humanity is a burden on the planet; that we should be subservient to nature, not masters of it. The Enlightenment idea that humans should seek to control and dominate the world around them is wrong, Greens say, as it undermines ‘healthy interdependence of individual, nature and society’. Instead, the Green Party believes we need a ‘reduction in the physical burden human societies place upon our planet’. That ‘burden’ is what most of us call civilisation. And a lot of us quite like it.



Five current reports below

Kimberley gas plant protesters ‘left nothing’ for local people

THE Aboriginal leader who backed a $40 billion gas plant in the Kimberley as a way of creating indigenous jobs has attacked “extreme nutter” environmentalists who he says derailed the plan but have since done nothing to help the region’s impoverished people.

Wayne Bergmann, a businessman and former head of the Kimberley Land Council, told an oil and gas conference in Perth yesterday that suicide rates and unemployment were rising in the Kimberley due to a paucity of jobs, especially for younger people.

Telstra director Geoff Cousins and singers Missy Higgins and John Butler were among those who opposed the use of James Price Point, 60km north of ­Broome as the site for the Woodside Petroleum project.

The high-profile campaigners joined green groups in arguing against industrialisation of the remote Kimberley region, which boasts some of the world’s most spectacular wilderness areas.

Woodside abandoned its plan in 2012 and walked away from a deal with the KLC to pay $1.5bn in benefits to Kimberley indigenous groups over 30 years in exchange for use of the land at James Price Point.

The company is instead planning to build the plant to process its Browse Basin gas reserves off the Kimberley coast using floating LNG technology.

This means that only a fraction of the employment, health and education benefits promised to Aborigines will be delivered.

Mr Bergmann, who lives in Broome, yesterday said the environmentalists had left the Kimberley and their legacy was “destroying any opportunities” for Aboriginal people.

“They’re all gone but the region is still in devastation,” he said.  “We’ve still got the highest suicide rates, the lowest employment (rates).

“Geoffrey Cousins is still living in his house in Sydney — he hasn’t left anything back in our region.

“So I’m driven to create jobs because if our mob don’t have meaning in their life, these statistics are going to continue.”

Mr Cousins has previously defended his role in the campaign and accused Mr Bergmann of failing to ensure that the 2011 agreement with Woodside had a “break clause” to ensure payments would flow to Aboriginal communities even if the company chose a different site for the project.

He said Woodside had a moral obligation to fulfil its promises under the native title deal and he believed the WA government was responsible for ensuring Aboriginal people received the same health and education services that other citizens took for granted.

Mr Cousins was appointed last year as head of the Australian Conservation Foundation — the country’s largest environmental lobby group.

Mr Bergmann said since the collapse of the Woodside deal he had turned his attention to creating jobs for Aboriginal people by helping to form a maritime company that is on the verge of a major expansion.

He said the company, Aboriginal Maritime Pty Ltd, or AML, was finalising a share buyback under which its indigenous shareholders will increase their combined stake to 51 per cent.

Mr Bergmann told the Australasian Oil and Gas conference that he had been offended by claims by the Maritime Union of Australia that AML was underpaying its workers. “We’ve grown up fighting for our mob — the very last thing we are going to do is underpay our workers,” he said.

In January, the Fair Work Commission approved a four-year enterprise bargaining agreement for AML.

The MUA challenged the EBA late last year, saying that it could result in Aborigines receiving pay and conditions inferior to those of non-Aborigines.

But FWC commissioner Tim Lee found the agreement provided for pay between 20 per cent and 220 per cent above award rates.

AML is owned by several Aboriginal sporting and business identities, including former AFL stars Dean Rioli and David Wirrpanda.


Extra Solar PV for Grid - NT Study

Not mentioned below is that Alice springs is effectively in the middle of a desert -- so experiences bright and sunny days most of the time.  There is no way the findings could be generalized to often cloudy coastal areas

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) today released a study that shows how up to 10MW of extra solar photovoltaic (PV) could be installed in the Alice Springs grid without adversely affecting supply stability.

ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said this additional PV would make a sizeable difference to the Alice Springs grid, which currently has 4.1MW of solar and a peak load of almost 55MW in summer.

"The findings of this study are timely and show how more solar PV could be reliably introduced into Australian electricity networks," Mr Frischknecht said.

"ARENA provided $242,625 towards the study which was conducted by Northern Territory (NT) engineering company CAT Projects, and investigated the impact of large amounts of solar PV on electricity grids and how to effectively manage it.

"One of the challenges involved in increasing grid-connected solar power in Australia is how to best manage the local weather impacts, such as cloud cover.

"CAT Projects used a network of solar monitoring stations to estimate the maximum number of solar power generators that can be connected to the Alice Springs electricity grid without energy storage.

Mr Frischknecht said the study found that dispersing solar PV across geographical locations can effectively counteract its variability within a network.

"The study shows that building a larger number of smaller installations and spreading them out, ideally 3-5 kilometers apart in Alice Springs, can reduce the impact of local cloud cover and smooth overall solar energy output," Mr Frischknecht said.

"This analysis is very relevant to solar projects currently being planned in the NT and elsewhere in Australia, and could allow network planners to increase the amount of solar PV that can be connected to the network.

"The findings should also allow performance-based Power Purchase Agreements to be more accurately formulated, potentially lowering the cost of renewable energy generation.

"Studies like this have a vital role to play in helping to increase confidence in renewable energy, overcoming barriers and encouraging more renewables into electricity grids."

The study is now publically available in line with ARENA's commitment to advance competitive renewable energy technologies and solutions through knowledge sharing.

The results are available on the analysis of variations in instantaneous weather effects project page.


Australian Politicians Pressured to come Clean on Climate Fraud

Written by Dr Judy Ryan

As of March this year the Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) is under investigation for possible maladjustment of its data by an Independent Advisory Forum. The BoM scientists  say they follow Worlds Best Practice, but all over the world Meteorological Agencies are coming under scrutiny. BoM

The world will be watching Australia. The public submission by Drs Judy Ryan and Marjorie Curtis to the Minister for the Environment Greg Hunt and the Technical Advisory Forum sets out the historical context which facilitated what the evidence is suggesting is a politically driven global scam.

Their submission emailed on 4th March 2015 was CC’d to more than 360 national and international media, political and other interested entities. It was BCC’d to many more. They find that the public email is a powerful tool and encourage others all over the world to use it.

Their letter is as follows:

Dear Minister Greg Hunt,

We are writing to thank you for organising an independent investigation of the Bureau of Meteorology’s data management practices.  We trust that you have received good advice and chosen independent and objective scientists and statisticians to be members of the Technical   Advisory Forum.

We have been very concerned about the advice you are receiving ever since we heard you stating publicly that you rely mainly on the advice from the CSIRO and the BoM.

Unfortunately, as the evidence indicates, scientific integrity in Australia’s once iconic institutions, such as the Bureau of Meteorology, (BoM) and our Universities has disintegrated.  The scientific ‘peer review’ has also collapsed.   For that reason we reference this document to robust evidence based internet sites. This includes Wikipedia, which in the discipline of climatology, is more robust.

The evidence also indicates that the  human caused Global Warming hypothesis and its associated demonisation of carbon dioxide is a global scam.  It is driven by the desire for power by politicians, and money and prestige for the funded climate scientists.

The evidence shows that the CO2 demonisation scam is well established in Australia.  Unfortunately it has continued under your stewardship of the Department of Environment. This is illustrated by the unhelpful response (dated 19th December 2013 ) to my formal complaint to the Department of Environment.  See  here

It is further evidenced by the Ombudsman’s final response dated 27th February 2014. See  here

However, on the 4th September last year at the Fenner School of Environmental  at the Australian National University a prominent  Australian climate scientist, Professor Michael Raupach, publicly conceded that the term ‘carbon’ is shorthand for ‘carbon dioxide’. He also conceded  that it is definitely not a pollutant.

Sadly Professor Raupach has passed away, but we will always remember him  and the words he spoke when responding to a question from the audience. The question and Professor Raupach’s response can be heard here at 1.06.33 into the recording. See here

Dear Minister, we feel that it is necessary to provide you and the Technical Advisory Forum members with the historical evidence to what we believe to be the greatest fraud yet perpetrated against humanity. You may wonder what a bit of history has to do with the  BoM’s data  homogenisation practices, but please read on. We will be as brief as possible

*  Early 1900’s a young ecologist  Eugene Odum set out test the hypothesis that “Nature is in Equilibrium”. His  data supported that hypothesis. He went on to experience wealth and prestige. He wrote the  book , “The  Fundamentals of Ecology” . It was published in 1953, and became a school text book in many different countries. Consequently, his wealth and prestige increased. The hypothesis that “Nature is in Equilibrium" also known as  the “Balance of Nature” or “Gaia” prevailed.

*  However,  with the advent of desktop computers  in the late 1960s the theory was retested by a new generation of ecologists.

*  The evidence from all the those later studies showed that no matter what the sample size the data showed no such relationship. To the contrary, it showed nature to be a wild thing; a dynamic natural system with huge variance.

*  The nature in equilibrium theory was  not only disproven  but discredited in the 70s.  See  here

* It was replaced by chaos theory which states that “In the disciplines of Meteorology …..and Biology…….Small differences in initial conditions (such as those due to rounding errors in numerical computation) yield widely diverging outcomes for such dynamical systems, rendering long-term prediction impossible in general. See here

*  The problem was that there was much money, power and corruption associated with  the  Gaia theory by that time. Eugene Odum, already wealthy, became a member of the hugely influential entrepreneur orientated ” Club of Rome”. He was highly regarded by the establishment until he died peacefully in 2002 aged 88.

History shows that it was a  grave error of judgement  by the academic establishment of the time not to investigate Eugene Odum for possible scientific fraud. The ramifications of that error were profound. Chaos theory was quietly discarded and in the early 1970’s the disproven Gaia theory was resurrected and rechristened “Sustainability” .

 One only has to look at the 2009 Australian High School Science curriculum to realise that  the disproven Gaia is still the order of the day in our country.  See here

To quote the bottom two lines from page 6    “Order and change are necessary ideas to understand systems. Understanding systems provides the basis for appreciating the nature of equilibrium and interdependence.”

Australia dare not allow history to repeat itself in our nation. For if we do, the Gaia scam and all its associated academic funding scams will continue and science in Australia will continue to be mired in uncertainty.

The definition of fraud is, “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.” (Black’s Law Dictionary).

It is true that  the Australian people are experiencing financial disadvantage as a result of the host of policies and administrative decisions driven by advice regarding the science of climate change. Is that advice false or misleading? Does it deceive by concealing or omitting or embellishing or misrepresenting relevant facts?

You may wonder how this definition could  apply to the BoM.  Please read on. During Professor Karoly’s time as editor of Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Journal he and other scientists published  a paper in AMOJ Vol 62, 2012.    To quote from the paper   “Trend analysis confirmed that the 1.1 °C increase in maximum temperature and 0.9 °C increase in minimum temperature since 1960 are the largest and most significant trends in Southeastern Australian temperature in the last 152 years”.

The evidence indicates that those predictions were based on weather stations where the BoM  may have  maladjusted the data. See here

This is one of the issues the Technical Advisory Forum will no doubt be addressing.

It is our humble opinion that a legitimate question is; have BoM scientists disseminated information to the Australian people in a deceptive manner.  Does their behaviour  meet  Black’s legal definition above.

We believe that Australia with its strong democracy under the Abbott government needs to take strong steps to address the climate change scam. The historical evidence indicates that Australia  should hold the Australian perpetrators accountable. Australia can lead the world  back to scientific integrity and sanity.

In closing we reiterate we are two senior citizens expressing the opinion we formed as a result of our own research. Whether the evidence backs it up or  is for others to decide. The BoM scientists are openly copied in to this email. We request them to respond by clicking reply all if they dispute anything we have said.

Respectfully yours

Drs Judy Ryan and Marjorie Curtis


Royal commission is set to debate a proposed plan from SA senator to expand nuclear industry

FREE power, no payroll tax and no motor vehicle tax. Sounds pretty great, right? That is what South Australian Senator, Sean Edwards is touting if the state expands its nuclear energy industry.

According to the Liberal senator, the state would be able to access ten of billions of dollars from the global nuclear industry if they are allowed to store rods and nuclear waste from other countries.

“The science is in. The process is proven and we have a first mover advantage which would see us generate wealth akin to being the Saudis of the South,” he told the Adelaide Advertiser.

The senator believes it would turn South Australia into a “special economic zone” which would further attract business investment.

Mr. Edwards has thrown his weight behind the project. He has reportedly met with countries interested in partnering with the state government and has briefed Trade Minister Andrew Robb and Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane on the details. All while promising huge economic incentives to the people of his state.

Ziggy Switkowski, former CEO of Telstra, is a nuclear physicist who is the former head of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation. He told TheAdelaide Advertiser that the program could “represent billions of dollars of revenue each year.”

Mr. Switkowski reviewed the industry for the Howard Government in 2006 and believes the improvements in science and technology have helped convince people of its safety.

A Royal Commission on the matter was announced last month with SA premier saying “it is now time to engage in a mature and robust conversation.”

It’s a debate that WA Greens Senator, Scott Ludlam said we need to have if only to “put the issue to bed once and for all.”

Nuclear energy has consistency proved to be one of the most viscerally divisive issues in politics so it comes as no surprise that the state’s proposal has been met with criticism by some members of the public.

Yesterday marked the fourth anniversary of the Fukishima nuclear disaster and opponents of Mr. Edwards plan took to the steps of the Adelaide parliament to protest the Royal Commission’s inquiry.

Dr. Jim Green, from Friends of the Earth, Australia attended the protest and told ABC radio that he was there to for two reasons. To lend his sympathy to the 160,000 Japanese who remain displaced from the Fukishima disaster and to send a message to the government that they’re “not happy about the terms of reference” of the inquiry.

The inquiry’s terms of reference will focus on uranium enrichment, nuclear generation and waste storage. Opponents of nuclear energy say the focus of the inquiry is disproportionately skewed towards the positive financial benefits without adequately accounting for the dangers.

Dr. Green would like to see uranium mining and previous nuclear programs such as Radium Hill and the Port Perry Uranium processing site included in the inquiry. Both sites sit deserted and serve as a reminder to Dr. Green of the perils of nuclear power.

A cartoon implies that the only casualty from Fukishima was the future of the nuclear ind

A cartoon implies that the only casualty from Fukishima was the future of the nuclear industry as the body of a man representing the nuclear power industry lies dead. Source: Supplied

In the past Prime Minister Tony Abbott has expressed his willingness to have nuclear power play a greater role in providing the energy needs of Australia. Yesterday he said he is “very interested” in the upcoming inquiry.

The inquiry starts next week however the consultation on the draft terms of reference close tomorrow.

So with just a single day left for the public to submit their opinion on the issue, perhaps it’s worth asking the question: At what price should we be willing to become a nuclear dumping ground?


Prime Minister faces fracking protest in south-east South Australia

Prime Minister Tony Abbott says decisions about unconventional gas mining will remain with state governments.

Mr Abbott touched down in Mount Gambier this week, where he faced a protest from South Australian farmers over fracking, a practice used to extract gas from within the earth.

Farmers at the protest expressed concern fracking would damage prime agricultural land and contaminate water supplies.

The Prime Minister said Australia should be "cautious" about unconventional gas mining but deflected decision-making to state governments.

A parliamentary inquiry into fracking in the south-east of SA is underway, with a committee due to make recommendations to State Government ministers after analysing submissions and hearings.

Mr Abbott said he did not want to see any practice that would "jeopardise the long-term future of some of the finest agricultural country" in Australia but did not commit to a national inquiry.

"I think it's important that the State Government should take seriously the inquiry, which has now been launched by Liberal members of the South Australia Parliament and let's see what the inquiry comes up with," he said.

"So far it seems that the problems people fear have not arisen but, when in doubt, it's best to proceed with caution.

"It is, in the end, a matter for state governments."


Fracking Under fire in taxpayer-funded film

According to a recent article in the Australian Financial Review, Screen Australia, Screen Queensland, and Screen West, and you too, are contributing hundreds of thousands of dollars to an anti-fracking documentary called Frackman.

The documentary tracks Queensland resident, “pig shooter and accidental activist” Dayne Pratzsky on his escapades, including trespassing on private land, and getting arrested at anti-fracking protests.

So far, Screen Australia has invested $200,000 of your money in the film, plus giving it a $435,000 tax credit offered to films with significant Australian content and expenditure.

Screen Queensland has invested $220,000 of taxpayer money, while Screen West has contributed $156,000.

Former Queensland Arts Minister, Ian Walker, pointed out that Screen Queensland was an independent body, and its decisions were not based on political criteria, but on artistic merit, but we still have a few questions.

WasteWatch is neither for nor against fracking; we will leave that debate to people who know more about it. And we are not suggesting for one second that the film ought not to be made or screened.

But forcing the taxpayer to fund it, when it has already taken a side in a controversial question of public policy? We wonder if that might not be a bit much.

Steve Wright, a director of the Energy Resource Information Centre, seems to have already made up his mind. He calls the film “an anti-industry campaign tool,” and “a big element of the activist toolkit” in the anti-fracking campaign.



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


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