Friday, December 11, 2015
Obama’s Ridiculous History Lessons on Climate Change
President Barack Obama last week tried to give us a history lesson on climate change. “As human beings are placed under strain, then bad things happen,” he said. “And, you know, if you look at world history, whenever people are desperate, when people start lacking food, when people are not able to make a living or take care of their families, that’s when ideologies arise that are dangerous.”
Welcome to leaps in logic that would span the Grand Canyon. Apparently excruciatingly slow, contradictory, and sometimes nearly imperceptible changes in the atmosphere’s temperature are capable of spawning ideologies like communism, fascism, and now Islamic jihadism, although the president won’t use that term. Never mind all those historical details about what actually caused these ideologies to rise—social upheavals like industrialization, philosophical disputes unleashed by the Enlightenment, and the crises inside Islam. The president has got it figured out.
It’s the weather—a kind of meteorological determinism befitting a climate Marxist.
Never to be left out in doubling down on a bad idea, the president’s national security adviser, Susan Rice, jumped into the fray. She blames the Syrian civil war on climate change.
This would come as a great surprise to protesters who in March 2011 found themselves fired upon by Assad’s security forces. They were not the slightest bit interested in the drought that Rice and others argue caused the war.
Protesters were asking not for water, but for democracy, and as any college sophomore would know, the unrest that gave rise to the conflict was caused not by dry weather, but by Assad’s oppression.
If you don’t believe me, take it from the co-author of the report that spawned the “climate change did it” theory of the Syrian war, Richard Seager. After arguing that global warming made the offending Syrian drought worse, he quickly adds, “We’re not saying the drought caused the [Syrian] war.”
Indeed it didn’t, because that would be preposterous.
And yet that is precisely what Rice would want you to believe. Seager may cover himself with a categorical denial after the fact, but he, Rice, and others like them know that their supporters will pick up their true meaning.
Such leaps in logic have a name. It is called sophistry.
Vague statements about what the “science” supposedly means hang out there as mere suggestions, to be denied or embraced depending on how useful they are to the political agenda. That’s the literal meaning of sophistry: the use of subtly deceptive argumentation to make a falsehood sound true—otherwise, and crudely, known as a lie.
Can there be any question as to why so many people are so skeptical of claims made by climate change advocates? Instead of a cautious scientific method, we get alarmism and wild speculations that cannot be supported by the facts.
I suggest that the president take some courses in history and logic. Somehow he must have missed them at Columbia. If he doesn’t want to do that, then perhaps he can at least spare us the inane world history lessons.
Memo to Poorer Countries: Congress Isn’t Going to Fund Obama’s Green Climate Fund
One week into the Paris climate change negotiations, and it’s now doubtful whether President Barack Obama will be able to make good on his promise to provide billions of dollars to the “Green Climate Fund.” The goal of this fund is to give U.S. taxpayer dollars to poorer nations in order to subsidize their climate programs.
During a press conference at the Paris Climate Conference (COP21), Todd Stern, Obama’s chief climate negotiator, was asked about congressional opposition to the Green Climate Fund. Stern could only say, “For this [budget] year we’re seeking $500 million, and I hope we can get as close to it as we can, but we don’t know yet.”
Ten Democrat U.S. senators flew over to Paris and held their own press conference, but not one of them addressed the funding issue.
This is understandable, as climate change alarmists in the White House and the Senate don’t have a good answer to the significant opposition within Congress for the climate fund. Thirty-seven Republican senators have already pledged “that Congress will not allow U.S. taxpayer dollars to go to the Green Climate Fund until the forthcoming international climate agreement is submitted to the Senate for its constitutional advice and consent.”
On the House side, 110 members have likewise pledged to block budget requests for the Green Climate Fund unless the Paris agreement is brought to Congress for its approval.
This is a significant embarrassment for the president’s negotiating team in Paris, since it is clear to all present here that the “developing” nations of the world will not agree to anything unless they are guaranteed the billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars that they have been promised.
Unlike under the terms of the 1997 Kyoto climate protocol, developing countries are now pledging to reduce their carbon emissions—but only if they are provided the financing and technology to do so. And any projects they take on to adapt to the climate change already occurring must also be underwritten by the world’s wealthy nations.
So while it has become clear that Obama fully intends to bypass Congress on the Paris agreement, he has no choice but to go to Congress with his begging bowl for the billions of dollars he needs to fund the Green Climate Fund.
Given the current political climate in Washington, D.C., the world’s developing countries that are in attendance at the Paris Climate Conference should take the Obama administration’s assurances of climate funding with a very large grain of salt.
The U.S. Department of the Interior preaches Warmism too
The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) claims that climate change will cause the disappearance of the glaciers in Montana’s Glacier National Park in just 20 years.
“Climate change affects every corner of the American continent,” the DOI website stated. “It is making droughts drier and longer, floods more dangerous and hurricanes more severe.
“The glaciers in Montana's Glacier National Park are melting so quickly, they’re expected to disappear in the next two decades,” the website stated, although no documentation is provided to substantiate that claim.
The section of the DOI website dedicated to climate change also reveals how much of the land in the United States and its resources are controlled by the federal government: “one-fifth of the land in the country, 35,000 miles of coastline, and 1.76 billion acres of the Outer Continental Shelf.”
“The impacts of climate change are forcing us to change how we manage these resources,” the website stated. “Climate change may dramatically affect water supplies in certain watersheds, impact coastal wetlands and barrier islands, cause relocation of and stress on wildlife, increase wildland fires, further spread invasive species, and more.”
The DOI’s National Park Service (NPS) website also described the more than one million acre park:
“Glacier National Park is not named so much for its small glaciers, but for the colossal work of colossal glaciers in the past,” the NPS website stated. “Ten thousand years ago, the topography of Glacier looked much the same as it does today.”
The NPS website also predicted the end of glaciers at the park in just 15 years.
“Since the last ice age ended, around 10,000 years ago, there have been many slight climate fluctuations that have been mirrored by the growth or recession of glaciers,” the NPS website stated. “Based on current trends, however, glacier recession models predict that by 2030, Glacier National Park will be without glaciers.”
The NPS website also credited weather for the diversity of plants and animals in the park.
“Glacier Park's varied climate influences and its location at the headwaters of the Pacific, Atlantic and Hudson Bay drainages have given rise to an incredible variety of plants and animals,” the website stated. “Its diverse habitats are home to nearly 70 species of mammals including the grizzly bear, wolverine, gray wolf and lynx.
“Over 270 species of birds visit or reside in the park, including such varied species as harlequin ducks, dippers and golden eagles,” the website stated.
The NPS website also tells potential visitors about how unpredictable the weather is at the park.
“Weather is always unpredictable in the mountains,” the website stated. “Be prepared for all types of weather!”
At UN Climate Conference, Placating China More Important Than Including a Big Polluter
The United Nations and its member states may be engrossed in the drive to achieve a new global climate agreement in Paris this week, but not to the extent that they are willing to challenge China’s decades-old refusal to allow Taiwan to be treated as a normal country.
Taiwan – a thriving, independent democracy of 23 million which Beijing regards as a renegade province – has been excluded from participation as a state in the U.N. climate conference despite the much-touted urgency about reaching a global deal.
Rather than have a national delegation at the talks, as almost 200 other countries do, Taiwan has sent a team that is attending in the capacity of a non-governmental organization, unable to participate in the talks officially – or even as an observer state.
Taiwan’s exclusion comes despite the fact it is a relatively big emitter of the “greenhouse gases” blamed for climate change.
According to the latest available data from the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Taiwan is the 25th biggest emitter of carbon dioxide (CO2) resulting from “fossil-fuel burning, cement production, and gas flaring.”
That puts it ahead of more than half of the specified developed nations whose contributions to CO2 emissions were considered grievous enough to have emission-reduction targets set under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol.
On the other hand, Taiwan as an island nation is allegedly susceptible to rising sea levels which the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change blames on climate change, particularly in lower-lying western parts of the island where the population centers are located.
The COP21 talks in Paris – the 21st Conference of the Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – aim to forge a new global agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol – by a Friday deadline.
Eager to be part of the international effort, the Taiwanese government, like other countries, offered a climate action plan, a so-called “intended nationally determined contribution,” ahead of the conference.
But it was not allowed to formally submit its INDC – which as a result does not appear on the UNFCCC’s INDC list – and the U.N. has not permitted it to take a seat at the negotiating table.
In 1971 the U.N. General Assembly expelled Taiwan and gave its seat the communist People’s Republic of China. Taiwan’s attempts since 1993 to rejoin the world body have been blocked by Beijing and its allies.
China says that granting Taiwan legitimacy in the international arena would violate its “one China” principle and – in a phrase used when Taiwan tried to participate in a previous U.N. climate conference, in Copenhagen six years ago – “hurt the feelings of the 1.3 billion Chinese people.”
“Taiwan is ready, willing and able to make meaningful contributions to tackle climate change as an observer to the UNFCCC,” Taiwan’s foreign ministry in Taipei pointed out in a recent edition of its Taiwan Review publication. “As climate change is a global problem, all the nations of the world must work together to achieve a global solution.”
Speaking at a forum on the sidelines of the COP21 on Monday, the head of Taiwan’s Environmental Protection Administration (EPA), Wei Kuo-yen, called again for the UNFCCC to include it in the fight to combat climate change.
“Obviously, Taiwan has disappeared from the INDC map,” Taiwan’s official Central News Agency quoted him as saying. “With such intentional blindness in the international community, it is ironic that one cannot see the real existence of Taiwan in the U.N.’s bright meeting rooms.”
Despite the UNFCCC snub, Wei launched an initiative in Paris last weekend aimed at helping countries in the region deal with the effects of climate change – the Pan-Pacific Adaptation on Climate Change (PPACC).
More outrages and insanities in Paris
If alarmists get what they want at the climate gabfest, the consequences will be disastrous
The Senate will not approve or appropriate money for anything President Obama might agree to in Paris, and developing countries will not (and should not) stop building coal-fired power plants and using fossil fuels to lift billions out of abject poverty. However, we cannot let down our guard.
Mr. Obama will do everything possible to go around Congress and impose more Executive Branch anti-hydrocarbon edicts, to get a hypothetical, undetectable 0.05 degree reduction in average global temperatures 85 years from now. Meanwhile, the $1.5-trillion-per-year Climate Crisis Industry is determined to protect its money train, redistribute the world’s wealth, and increase its power over our lives, livelihoods and living standards. That means the mischief afoot in Paris will never stay in Paris.
The vast majority of the 40,000 attending the climate gabfest are alarmists, who have their time and lavish expenses paid by taxpayers or corporate cronies. But they still want to silence the few “dangerous manmade global warming” skeptics who have been able to attend the event on their own nickel. They want to revoke our conference credentials … and prosecute us as “racketeers” and “climate criminals” – when the real criminals are the alarmists, who are committing crimes against humanity and our planet.
They use climate chaos claims to justify spending countless billions of dollars annually for biased, pseudo-scientific research. They then use that “research” to justify programs that convert croplands into ethanol plantations, raising food and food aid costs, and leaving more people starving longer – and convert habitats into wind farms and solar facilities, to slaughter birds and bats by the millions;.
Alarmist policies cause numerous deaths every year from lung, intestinal and other diseases due to an absence of electricity, refrigeration and safe drinking water, and Western governments and banks refusing to provide financial support for power plants. It’s not fossil fuels that kill. It’s the absence of fossil fuels.
Unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats and their radical environmentalist allies in the EPA, UN and EU want to de-carbonize, de-industrialize and de-develop rich countries – and tell poor countries what level of development and “sustainable” living standards their families will be permitted to enjoy.
Meanwhile, Malaysian representative Gurdial Singh Nijar told the 40,000 attendees: “You [developed countries] grew to this level of prosperity because you burned fossil fuels at an unabated rate. You created the [climate] problem.” India Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar has bluntly said “the bill for climate action for the world is not just $100 billion. It is in trillions of dollars per year.” To be paid by countries that climate policies will make less developed, less rich and less employed every year!
So first, the bill for WHAT problem, exactly? White House press releases, COP21 climate conference speeches and climate computer models are not evidence – especially when real-world events completely contradict the Climate Hustle and Hype. Global temperatures haven’t risen in 19 years. Greenland and Antarctic ice caps are growing, not shrinking. Sea levels are rising at barely seven inches per century. Oceans are firmly alkaline, not acidic. Hurricane and tornado activity is below historic averages.
So before alarmists say another word about responsibility, prevention, reparation and compensation, they need to prove that real-world climate disasters and extreme weather events from the past few decades are due to humans and fossil fuel emissions – instead of natural forces and fluctuations. They need to prove that those events are unprecedented – beyond what humanity has had to deal with in the past.
Most of all, they need to do it in a full-throated debate, where they have to defend their claims, data and studies in the open – and be questioned, challenged and cross-examined by experts from our side.
Second, fossil fuels power technologies that have lifted billions out of poverty, disease and despair … and that poor developing nations are now using to do the same. Developed countries burn fossil fuels to create and manufacture those technologies. Do poor countries want them or not? They can’t have it both ways.
Third, what Mr. Obama and climate alarmists at the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) in Paris are trying to impose on the world should chill rational people to the bone.
The president has unilaterally “pledged” that the United States will slash its carbon dioxide emissions by 26-28% below 2005 levels by 2025 – even after America already reduced those plant-fertilizing emissions significantly since 1990. The impact on poor, working class and minority families will be disastrous, but he and his bureaucracy and Big Green allies don’t give a spotted owl hoot.
Now, on top of that, they and the alarmists gathered in Paris have prepared a draft climate treaty that really will “fundamentally transform” the United States and industrialized world, just as President Obama promised he would do. You can find the full text of the draft COP21 agreement here, in obtuse UN-speak – and the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow’s plain-language analysis here. The Heartland Institute provides extensive additional realism here, addressing climate change and the Paris process.
Most developed countries want binding commitments by all nations: that they will reach specified CO2 reduction targets by specific dates. The huge coalition of “Like-Minded Developing Countries,” led by China and India, want nonbinding commitments, or no commitments. They will agree only to do their best to cap their emissions by around 2030, and then gradually reduce them as their economies improve and their power plants, factories and cars become more efficient, less polluting, less CO2-emitting.
This is called “differentiated responsibilities.” It means CO2 reduction commitments will apply only to already developed nations, which may also be subject to a new International Tribunal of Climate Justice. Currently rich countries will also have to provide additional “justice” in the form of cash: $100 billion a year to begin with, then 1% of GDP (which would be some $167 billion per year for the USA alone), plus billions more in free technology – to cover alleged climate adaptation costs, reparations for past climate damages, and “losses and damages” from extreme weather events caused (solely) by now-rich countries.
The theory, the claim, the delusion – the money-grubbing, power-grabbing pretense – behind all of this is that controlling FRC (Formerly Rich Country) CO2 emissions will somehow hold the projected global temperature increase to 1.5 or 2.0 degrees Celsius (2.7 or 3.6 deg F). In other words, alarmists want us to believe that carbon dioxide now functions as Earth’s thermostat and weather control system, even though it represents barely 0.040% of the atmosphere (argon is 0.93% and oxygen is 20%).
Just as absurd, this is supposed to happen even if poor countries continue building coal-fired power plants, driving more cars, emitting more greenhouse gases, and increasing atmospheric CO2 to perhaps 0.05% (500 ppm), from its pre-industrial level of around 0.028% (280 ppm).
All this may happen in Fantasy Land computer models. It doesn’t and won’t happen in the Real World.
Climate Chaos Theory also absurdly assumes that any global average temperature increase above 2 deg C will somehow be cataclysmic – even though a warmer planet with more CO2 in the air will greatly improve forest, grassland, algae and crop growth. And all this nonsense is driving the Paris insanity.
Nevertheless, President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry are determined to lock the United States into this Iran-2 deal – legally, “morally” or just because they signed it. It’s all part of their latest apology tour: America’s mea culpa for having used fossil fuels to improve lives all over the world.
Perhaps craziest of all, President Obama and too many others think these computer-world, Sim Planet climate disasters are far worse than the all-too-real butchery we have witnessed in San Bernardino, Boston, Chattanooga, Fort Hood, Israel, Bali, Mali, Madrid, Mumbai, London, Lebanon, Libya, Iraq, Syria, Kenya, Nigeria – and Paris! With more undoubtedly to come.
When will the insanities cease? Speak out. Help Paris collapse like the house of cards it is.
Australia concerned over draft climate deal
Australia has 'serious concerns' over the latest form of a global climate agreement, with Foreign Minister Julie Bishop warning of a challenging few days ahead in Paris.
A new draft agreement was revealed on Wednesday at the United Nations climate change conference, with no clear landing point on key hurdles of finance, ambition and differentiation.
Ms Bishop warned the document was a long way from attracting her signature.
Australia's environment ambassador Peter Woolcott - speaking on behalf a negotiating block of developed countries - told the conference the group had serious concerns about the text. 'We are deeply disappointed at the weakening of several provisions,' he said on Wednesday night.
'As we move forward we must avoid a situation where, in an effort to reach consensus, we strip the Paris outcome of its ability to be a genuine step change.'
It comes as the United States joined around 100 countries in a new alliance dubbed the high ambition coalition which vows to strengthen Wednesday's draft.
Marshall Islands Foreign Minister Tony de Brum said the coalition comprised countries big and small, rich and poor and would not be trading off any demands. 'We will not accept a minimalist or barebones agreement,' he told media on Wednesday night.
The coalition is calling for five yearly reviews of country emissions pledges, adequate climate finance for poor countries and a clear pathway to a low-carbon future. It also wants recognition of an ambition to limit global warming to 1.5C - below the 2C target accepted by most developed countries.
Australia isn't in the coalition and Ms Bishop couldn't confirm if it had been invited. 'I'll have to check on that, we've got so many invitations to so many events and so many groupings,' she told reporters in Paris.
She remains optimistic 196 parties will walk away with a strong agreement at the end of the talks but warns it won't be an easy road. 'Clearly, this is the beginning of the end of the negotiations and there's still a lot of work to be done,' she said. 'Our negotiators are working through the night.'
There's still disagreement on who should do what, with an option still in the draft agreement to hold only rich countries to account on action. Australia opposes that option, calling for each country to do its part to curb global emissions. 'All countries need to take action and there should be a level playing field,' Ms Bishop said.
Earlier, the foreign minister flagged Australia's intention to sign onto a New Zealand-led initiative to boost transparency and integrity of international carbon markets.
Australia doesn't use international units, but Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has flagged it as an option when domestic climate policies are reviewed in 2017.
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Posted by JR at 1:38 AM