Wednesday, May 13, 2015

They're still trying to get that sea-level to rise more

The latest manipulations of the data seem well enough conceived but I think you have to read between the lines at times.  Reducing the estimated overall sea-level rise for the last 20 years is certainly reasonable (conclusion 1 below) but conclusion 2 is a bit more hairy. Hard to see how it gells with conclusion 1.  But, whatever it means, conclusion 2 may not matter. The conclusion 2 change is said only to be "of opposite sign" to previous findings, indicating that it was probably not statistically significant

Unabated global mean sea-level rise over the satellite altimeter era

Christopher S. Watson et al.

The rate of global mean sea-level (GMSL) rise has been suggested to be lower for the past decade compared with the preceding decade as a result of natural variability1, with an average rate of rise since 1993 of +3.2 ± 0.4 mm yr−1 (refs 2, 3).

However, satellite-based GMSL estimates do not include an allowance for potential instrumental drifts (bias drift4, 5). Here, we report improved bias drift estimates for individual altimeter missions from a refined estimation approach that incorporates new Global Positioning System (GPS) estimates of vertical land movement (VLM).

In contrast to previous results (for example, refs 6, 7), we identify significant non-zero systematic drifts that are satellite-specific, most notably affecting the first 6 years of the GMSL record.

Applying the bias drift corrections has two implications. First, the GMSL rate (1993 to mid-2014) is systematically reduced to between +2.6 ± 0.4 mm yr−1 and +2.9 ± 0.4 mm yr−1, depending on the choice of VLM applied. These rates are in closer agreement with the rate derived from the sum of the observed contributions2, GMSL estimated from a comprehensive network of tide gauges with GPS-based VLM applied (updated from ref. 8) and reprocessed ERS-2/Envisat altimetry9.

Second, in contrast to the previously reported slowing in the rate during the past two decades1, our corrected GMSL data set indicates an acceleration in sea-level rise (independent of the VLM used), which is of opposite sign to previous estimates and comparable to the accelerated loss of ice from Greenland and to recent projections2, 10, and larger than the twentieth-century acceleration2, 8, 10.


How Can So Many World Leaders Be So Wrong?

By Alan Caruba

In a recent Daily Caller article, Michael Bastach took note of “25 Years of predicting The Global Warming ‘Tipping Point’.” This is the message that the Earth is warming rapidly and, if we don’t abandon the use of fossil fuels for power, it will arrive to wreak destruction on the human race and all life on the planet.

It is astounding how many past and present world leaders are telling everyone this despite the total lack of any real science, nor any actual warming—the Earth has been in a natural cooling cycle since 1997!

At the heart of the global warming—now called climate change—“crisis” has been the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that has been issuing apocalyptic predictions since its inception in 1988. None of its predictions have come true. How could they, based as they are on the false science of computer models, not that based on observable climate events and trends?

To this day our own government through its meteorological agencies has been caught manipulating the data gathered over the years to conform with the “warming” scenario. The worst has been the Environmental Protection Agency which is engaged in an effort to shut down coal-fired utilities and access to every other energy source on which we depend to power the nation.

Despite this national and international effort, mostly likely based on the liberal ideology that there are too many humans on the plant and dramatic ways must be found to reduce that number. In the past these anti-humanity advocates could depend on famine, disease and wars to kill off millions, but in the modern world that has become less of a threat.

One libertarian think tank, the Heartland Institute, has been leading the battle against the global warming/climate change hoax for a decade. As a Heartland policy advisor I have had a front row seat. In June, Heartland will sponsor the Tenth International Conference on Climate Change bringing together some of the world’s leading scientists to recommend that it is time for Congress to “take a fresh look at climate science”, “explore better science-based policies for energy and the environment”, and, bluntly stated, to “start over on the question of global warming?”

It did not surprise me to learn that Heartland had dispatched staff to Rome when the Pope announced he too was joining the “climate change” advocates despite its lack of any basis in science. The group garnered tons of international media coverage by simply presenting the truth. You can find out more about them here,  It didn’t take long for Jeffrey Sachs, a Columbia University professor and ‘special advisor” to United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, to write a commentary condemning global warming “deniers” that appeared on a Catholic website called Pewsitter.

Sachs took particular aim at The Heartland Institute and, despite not attending its Rome press conference or any of the presentations the experts provided, did not hesitate to identify Heartland as having been supported for years by the Koch brothers, known for the support of conservative groups and causes.

Joseph Bast, Heartland president, does not let such cheap shots pass by. “The Heartland Instituter has received just $25,000 from a single organization, a charitable foundation affiliated with the Koch brothers during the past 15 years. Our annual budget is approximately $7 million. Even that small gift was earmarked for our work on health care reform, not global warming. Why does Sachs mention the ‘Koch brothers’ unless his intention is to smear an independent organization by falsely implying a much larger or somehow Improper  level of support from some singularly unpopular billionaires?”

Bast got to the heart of the war being perpetrated by the either misinformed or deliberately lying world leaders of the climate change hoax. “The dishonesty of Sachs’ reference to The Heartland Institute would be startling, coming from a person of Sachs’ stature, if this sort of misrepresentation of facts weren’t so common in the debate over climate change. President Obama sets the tone. Comparing global warming realists to members of the ‘flat earth society’ and rather ominously calling on his supporters to ‘hold climate change denier’s feet to the fire.’”

“Sachs has had a long and distinguished career as an academic and in various government agencies,” said Bast, “but on this issue he is letter his liberal ideology cloud his judgement. His short essay reveals a disturbing lack of knowledge about climate science and compassion toward the billions of people in the world who will be harmed by the UN’s plans to make energy more expensive and less reliable.”

“Sachs ends his essay with a call on people of all faiths to ‘fulfill our moral responsibilities to humanity nd the future of Earth.’ That responsibility starts with truth-telling. Sachs and his colleagues on the left haven’t reach the starting line yet.”

It doesn’t matter if it is the Pope, the President of the United States, or the UN Secretary General if the assertion that the Earth is warming when it is not or that coal, oil and natural gas must be abandoned to “save the Earth.” Whether from ignorance or a dark hidden agenda, the whole of the global warming/climate change is aimed at harming billions, many of whom need the power that this hoax would deny to everyone.


Energy: Private Sector Progress & Public Sector Failure

If there is an opportunity to be made our “free market system” will allow our entrepreneurs to do it. So why aren’t we driving electric cars, or cars that run on biofuel. It may be possible that these ideas are simply unsustainable without a government subsidy. If there is a breakthrough in energy it will happen in the private sector and without government assistance or oversight. This has happened with fracking.

The government has a long list of green energy investments, the most noted one being Solyndra a company trying to make a go at solar. Solyndra costs the tax payers around $500million. It seems like the politicians doling out these subsidies may not be interested in real energy progress, but instead interested in pushing there green energy agenda. Public investments in the myth of green energy are really a waste of our money.

Real progress has been made in fracking (extracting natural gas from rock beneath the earth). Private companies have decided to invest their own money in the development & advancement of this technology and it has payed off big time. Everyone benefits from the this technology. These companies drill for natural gas, employ people in real jobs, and provide a clean source of energy. The more natural gas they extract the more the price of energy declines. That is assuming the current administration doesn’t tax the natural gas to high heaven to pay for green energy failures.fracking

For those people that oppose fracking for gas, the “no drill, no spill” people. I only ask that they stop complaining about the price of energy if they become unreliant on fossil fuels.


Not seeing it as Suzuki sees it

Behind his benign visage, Canada's David Suzuki is arguably the most hysterical Warmist of all

An obstacle to rational decision making in climate policy is the confusion between carbon dioxide (CO2) and air pollution.

Real air pollution, such as sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and soot, is important to control and we have done a good job in most of Canada reducing the concentration of these substances.

But CO2, an odourless, colourless gas that is an essential to plant photosynthesis, is not pollution. The poor air quality in China’s cities has nothing to do with CO2.

So why would David Suzuki bring up climate change and Canada’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in his article about air pollution in China? It is because of his concern that GHG emissions, primarily CO2 from human activities, will result in climate problems.

After 18 years with no global warming while CO2 levels have risen 10%, GHG-caused climate concerns are becoming an increasingly difficult sell. So Suzuki and many politicians piggyback debatable climate change concerns on top of genuine pollution worries, apparently hoping they can sell the former by associating it with the latter.

While this tactic might succeed for a while from a public relations perspective, it makes no sense scientifically.  It is akin to promoting the building of an asteroid defense system, an expensive endeavour of highly uncertain value, by associating it with vitally important cancer research.

Suzuki must help society distinguish between unrelated issues, not confuse us with red herrings.


The Iceman Cometh?

Could a quiescent sun portend a new little ice age: a chilly era for humanity and agriculture?

Paul Driessen

President Obama, Al Gore and other alarmists continue to prophesy manmade global warming crises, brought on by our “unsustainable” reliance on fossil fuels. Modelers like Mike Mann and Gavin Schmidt conjure up illusory crisis “scenarios” based on the assumption that carbon dioxide emissions now drive climate change. A trillion-dollar Climate Crisis industry self-servingly echoes their claims.

But what if these merchants of fear are wrong? What if the sun refuses to cooperate with the alarmists?

“The sun is almost completely blank,” meteorologist Paul Dorian notes. Virtually no sunspots darken the blinding yellow orb. “The main driver of all weather and climate … has gone quiet again during what is likely to be the weakest sunspot cycle in more than a century. Not since February 1906 has there been a solar cycle with fewer sunspots.”

“Going back to 1755, there have been only a few solar cycles that have had a lower number of sunspots during their maximum phase,” Dorian continues. This continued downward trend in solar sunspot cycles began over 20 years ago, when Earth stopped warming. If it continues for a couple more cycles, Earth could be entering another “grand minimum,” an extended period of low solar activity.

That would mean less incoming solar radiation, which could have a marked cooling effect – as happened during previous decades-long episodes of low solar activity. The “Maunder Minimum” lasted 70 years (1645-1715), the “Dalton Minimum” 40 years (1790-1830); they brought even colder global temperatures to the “Little Ice Age.”

Solar activity is in free fall, Reading University (UK) space physicist Mike Lockwood confirms, perhaps “faster than at any time in the last 9,300 years.” He raised the likelihood of another grand minimum to 25% (from 10% three years previously). However, he claims a new little ice age is unlikely.

“Human-induced global warming is already a more important force in global temperatures than even major solar cycles,” Professor Lockwood insists. That warmist mantra may keep him from getting excoriated for even mentioning solar influences. But it ignores Earth’s long history of climate change.

And what if Lockwood is wrong about human influences and the extent of a coming cold era? Habibullo Abdussamatov, director of Russia’s space research laboratory and its global warming research team, is convinced another little ice age is on its way. (See pages 18-21 of this report.) That would be LIA #19.

A couple degrees warmer, with more carbon dioxide in the air, would be good for humanity and planet. Crops, forests and grasslands would grow faster and better, longer growing seasons over larger areas of land would support more habitats, wildlife, agriculture and people – especially if everyone has access to ample, reliable, affordable energy, especially electricity, and modern farming technologies. Most people, including the elderly, can easily handle such warmth, especially if they have air conditioning.

But a couple degrees colder would bring serious adverse consequences for habitats, wildlife, agriculture and humanity. Though geologists say we are overdue for one, this does not mean another Pleistocene ice age – with glaciers obliterating forests and cities under mile-thick walls of ice across North America, Europe, Asia and beyond. Maybe Lockwood is right, and it won’t be a full-blown Little Ice Age déjà vu.

However, Antarctic sea ice just set a new April record. Ice conditions are back to normal in the Arctic. Winters have become longer, colder and snowier. With less meltwater, sea levels are barely rising.

Moreover, a 2-degree drop in average global temperatures would shrink growing seasons, cropland and wildlife habitats. Agriculture would be curtailed across Canada, northern Europe and Russia, putting greater pressure on remaining land to feed hungry families without turning more habitats into cropland. Governments might even have to stop mandating corn for ethanol and devote the land to food crops.

Our ability to feed Earth’s growing population would be seriously impaired, especially since the same factions that wail about fossil fuels, fracking and “dangerous manmade climate change” also despise the chemical fertilizers, insecticides, biotechnology and mechanized farming that would enable us to get far more food per acre under colder conditions, even if crops are starved for plant-fertilizing CO2.

Generally colder conditions can also bring more unpredictable storms and cold snaps during shortened growing seasons. That happened frequently during the last Little Ice Age (1350-1850), resulting in frequent crop failures and bouts of hunger, malnutrition, starvation and disease in much of Europe.

Worst of all, cold kills. Modern homes and buildings with affordable heat make it easy to survive even brutal winters in comfort. However, carbon taxes, restrictions on coal and natural gas, renewable energy mandates and other ill-conceived programs have sent electricity and home heating prices soaring.

When energy is rationed, expensive and unpredictable, businesses lay people off or close their doors. Forced to go on welfare, people’s health and well-being suffer. The elderly are especially susceptible. In Britain, many pensioners now ride buses or sit in libraries all day to stay warm, while others burn used books in stoves (they are cheaper than coal or wood). Thousands die of hypothermia, because they can no longer afford proper heat.

In Germany, Greece and other countries, rising energy costs have caused a surge in illegal tree cutting, as desperate families try to stay warm. Hungry, unemployed families are also poaching wildlife. Meanwhile, forests of wind turbines generate minimal expensive electricity but do slaughter millions of birds and bats every year, leaving crops to be eaten by hordes of insects, across Europe and the United States.

These realities portend what will likely happen on a far larger scale, if we do enter another prolonged cold era under anti-fossil fuel rules imposed in response to global warming hysteria. The specter of widespread turmoil, rising death tolls and climate refugees by the millions could become reality.

And still alarmists say, even if temperatures aren’t rising, we should force developed nations to curtail their energy use and living standards – and modernize developing countries in a “sustainable” manner. We should use the “climate crisis” to “move the world in a greener, more equitable direction.”

As though wind, solar and biofuel energy and widespread organic farming are sustainable, under any objective standard. As though government elites have a right to tell poor countries what level of development, what energy technologies, what farming methods they will be “permitted” to have – and what level of poverty, disease, malnutrition and early death they must continue to suffer.

Ending this insanity must begin with the climate scientists and modelers. They are taking our tax dollars and promoting constant scare stories. They owe it to us to be objective, transparent and willing to discuss and debate these issues with those who question human influences on climate change. They owe it to us to get the predictions right, so that we can be properly prepared, especially if the iceman cometh again.

That means basing their models on all the forces that determine global temperature and climate fluctuations: the sun, cosmic rays, deep ocean currents, volcanoes and other natural forces, as well as the 0.04% of Earth’s atmosphere that is carbon dioxide. It means comparing predictions with actual (non-averaged, non-manipulated) real-world observations and data. If the improved models still do not predict accurately, it means revising hypotheses and methodologies yet again, until they square with reality.

Meanwhile, our politicians owe it to us to start basing energy and environmental policies on reality: on how Earth’s climate and weather actually behave – and on how their policies, laws and regulations affect job creation and preservation, economic growth and opportunities, and human health and welfare, especially for poor and minority families, and even more so for the poorest people on our planet.

Via email

Australia:  It’s black and white - this Green’s got to go

FORMER Greens leader Christine Milne’s decision to quit the senate at the next election was greeted by a chorus of blindingly hypocritical hyperbolically overly polite humbug. The political class was doing what it does best, protecting its own.

The real monument to Milne, and her predecessor Bob Brown, is the economically wrecked island state of Tasmania, the putrid petri  dish of the failed Green experiment. According to the ABS figures released yesterday, seasonal unemployment in Tassie last month was 7.3 per cent, more than a full percentage point higher than the national average. That, in large part, is due to the lunacy of the Green leadership in the state and nationally.

With the willing assistance of former Labor prime minister Bob Hawke and his political fixer, former environment minister Graham Richardson, the Tasmanian economy was effectively torpedoed when the Greens (still in their formative years) launched their first successful major anti-dam campaign, around the Franklin River.
The dam, which would have supplied the island state with cheap, non-fossil fuel-based hydro-electric power, was killed to please left-wing voters living in inner-urban Labor seats on the mainland.

The campaign cost Labor support in Tasmania but the emergent Greens knew that it was electorally more pragmatic to save a Tasmanian river than Tasmanian jobs.

There were echoes of those early Tasmanian campaigns in the recent NSW state election where the tree-hugging Greens won seats campaigning against the safe extraction of natural gas in areas where there was no CSG extraction.

In areas where gas extraction or forestry provides actual employment — that is, in areas where workers do more than turn on a power-hungry computer — the Greens don’t fare too well.

Milne’s political career was launched with another employment-destroying campaign, the blocking of the Wesley Vale pulp mill, a mill designed to meet standards more stringent than any other similar project in the world.

Tasmania’s quaint Hare-Clark electoral system delivered her a seat in its house of assembly in 1989. She went to the senate in 2004.

Throughout the dysfunctional Rudd-Gillard-Rudd government she distinguished herself with wild claims on climate change and was rewarded with billions of dollars’ worth of unproductive alternate energy projects which taxpayers will be bankrolling for generations.

Though no reputable scientific organisation in the world has linked a specific weather event to climate change, the former schoolteacher (English, history and social science) has never failed to drag extreme weather events into her unreal vision of an impending apocalyptic warmist fantasy.

“Global warming is driving extreme weather events around the world and the debate needs to be on the impacts of global warming,” she told a press conference after a typhoon devastated the Philippines in November 2013.

“Tony Abbott has created a phony debate in Australia. He never is prepared to talk about the connection between extreme weather events and global warming because he knows that tugs at people’s heartstrings,” she said.  “He knows ... that the Australian people will start joining the dots.”

If people did actually join the dots, they would have realised long ago that Milne was just plain dotty.

“Do you want death or do you want coal?” she asked late last year.

“Coal is bad for humanity and Tony Abbott is bad for Australia.”

Coal actually remains the cheapest source of energy in the world and has been responsible for markedly lowering the gap between the richest and poorest people in the world in recent decades.

Wacky Milne never knew when to stop, and harboured an overwhelming obsession with Abbott, even issuing a press release about the highly dubious claim that he had sought to unilaterally engage 3500 Australian troops in a ground offensive.  Though it was later proven to be false, Milne still found it a “frightening insight into a leader whose solution to everything is more aggression”.

The hope is that the new Green leader, Richard Di Natale, is a little more grounded.

Reading his maundering maiden speech, there is little to believe he will offer anything more than any other textbook inner-city sandalista, despite donning a three-piece suit for his first press conference.

When he faces his first test of realpolitik, will he support the increase in the fuel excise, which the Greens have so far stupidly rejected? Will he cling to the notion that people must be forced on to public transport at the expense of much-needed super highways?

Will he oppose the building of Sydney’s exciting new airport and support the closure of the existing under-utilised and curfew-burdened Kingsford Smith Airport — because it is too close to the Green heartlands of Ultimo and Newtown?

Given that Di Natale embraced his new role without any consultation with the party’s membership (how does that fit with their libertarian ideals?) and basks in the unreal and undeserved sense of moral superiority that Greens claim for themselves, little is likely to change with the switch in leaders.



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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