Wednesday, June 01, 2016
Could moles really end up toppling Stonehenge? UN report warns furry creatures could destroy ancient site if the earth's temperature keeps rising
The nonsense just keeps coming. Stonehenge has been through two periods hotter than now -- the Roman Warm Period and the Medieval Warm Period -- yet the stones are still there. And if they do topple over, what's to stop pushing them up again?
Stonehenge could be toppled by moles if the earth’s temperature keeps rising, a United Nations report warned yesterday.
The world heritage site is one of many that will be threatened by climate change – with other famous sites under threat including the Statue of Liberty, Venice and the Galapagos Islands.
A report warns that moles, rabbits and badgers will flourish in warmer conditions – and they would be likely to undermine the prehistoric monuments of Stonehenge.
The report was produced by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), the UN Heritage body Unesco and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
It warns that in the UK, warmer winters are likely to boost populations of burrowing animals that could disturb archaeological deposits and destabilise stonework.
The report warns that the huge megaliths, some weighing more than 40 tonnes, are under threat.
It says ‘warmer winters are likely to bring higher populations of burrowing mammals including badgers, moles and rabbits, which may destabilise stonework and disturb buried archaeological deposits.’ Hotter, drier summers could also increase the number of visitors – currently running at around one million a year which would also disturb the site as could more intense rainfall and flash flooding.
Warmer, wetter conditions are ideal breeding conditions for earthworms, a major part of the mole’s diet, which leads to moles and other creatures that eat them, such as badgers, flourishing. Soft, wet soil is also easier to dig than hard, dry ground.
Senators Demand DOJ Stop Investigating Global Warming Skeptics
Five Republican senators have sent a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch asking her to “immediately cease” using law enforcement resources to go after those who disagree with President Barack Obama on global warming.
“These actions provide disturbing confirmation that government officials at all levels are threatening to wield the sword of law enforcement to silence debate on climate change,” Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas, Mike Lee of Utah, Jeff Sessions of Alabama, David Perdue of Georgia and David Vitter of Louisiana wrote to Lynch.
“As you well know, initiating criminal prosecution for a private entity’s opinions on climate change is a blatant violation of the First Amendment and an abuse of power that rises to the level of prosecutorial misconduct,” the senators wrote.
The letter comes after Lynch told a Senate committee in March the Justice Department had internal discussions about investigating global warming skeptics based on letters sent by Democratic lawmakers in 2015.
“This matter has been discussed,” Lynch said. “We have received information about it and have referred it to the FBI to consider whether or not it meets the criteria for which we could take action on.”
State attorneys general are way ahead of Lynch, and have launched investigations into ExxonMobil for allegedly covering up global warming science while funding skeptic groups. A group of mostly Democratic AGs held a meeting with environmentalists in March, where some pledged to investigate Exxon and its allies.
“Financial damages alone may be insufficient,” New York AG Eric Schneiderman at the event in New York City. “The First Amendment does not give you the right to commit fraud.”
Schneiderman was the first state AG to launch an investigation into Exxon’s global warming stance. He was quickly followed, however, by lead prosecutors in California, Massachusetts and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
So far, only U.S. Virgin Islands Attorney General Claude Walker has demanded information from conservative think tanks and scientists skeptical of man-made global warming. Walker also subpoenaed the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a D.C.-based libertarian think tank.
Walker eventually withdrew his CEI subpoena after the group fought back, but Republican lawmakers are worried what could happen if federal investigators start going after those critical of Obama’s energy agenda.
“Using such prosecution to issue intrusive demands targeting individuals who represent the parts of civil society that are the most dependent on free inquiry and debate is something categorically different,” Republicans wrote to Lynch.
The DOJ has not yet announced any investigation into Exxon or any groups skeptical of global warming.
Professor Says ‘Madness’ Of Fighting Global Warming Will Impoverish Everyone
Cambridge University electrical engineering professor Dr. M.J. Kelly concluded in a peer-reviewed journal article that attempts to fight global warming with green energy will impoverish the world.
The Monday article found reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions enough to actually slow global warming in a measurable way simply isn’t possible without significantly reducing standards of living by plunging most of the world into poverty, destitution and starvation.
“Over the last 200 years, fossil fuels have provided the route out of grinding poverty for many people in the world,” states the article. “This trend is certain to continue for at least the next 20 years based on the technologies of scale that are available today. A rapid decarbonization is simply impossible over the next 20 years unless the trend of a growing number who succeed to improve their lot is stalled by rich and middle class people downgrading their own standard of living.”
The article found current CO2 emissions aren’t falling rapidly enough to slow global warming largely because most public policy has focused exclusively on developing wind and solar power, which may actually increase emissions. Continued support for wind, solar and other forms of green energy like biofuel “represents total madness” as these energy systems don’t justify the massive costs of the subsidies required to support them.
“It is clear to me that every further step along the current pathway of deploying first-generation renewable energy is locking in immature and uneconomic systems at net loss to the world standard of living,” Kelly wrote in a press statement. “Humanity is owed a serious investigation of how we have gone so far with the decarbonization project without a serious challenge in terms of engineering reality.”
The article confirms previous criticism of environmental policies which state the total amount of energy created by solar and wind is relatively small, even though both systems have been heavily subsidized since at least the 1970s. In 2010, wind power alone received $5 billion in subsidies, swamping the $654 million oil and gas received. Solar and wind power get 326 and 69 times more in subsidies than coal, oil, and natural gas per amount of energy generated.
In 2015, solar and wind power accounted for only 0.6 and 4.7 percent of electricity generated in America, respectively, according to the Energy Information Administration.
Climate Scientist Dubious About Global Warming Octopus Study
Below is pretty much what I said on the matter -- JR
A climate scientist is dubious global warming is causing octopus and cephalopod populations to increase, as claimed by a Australian University of Adelaide study.
The study published Monday analyzed the number cephalopods caught and speculated the ecologically and commercially important invertebrates could be benefiting from rising ocean temperatures. The study’s lead author stated in a press release cephalopods are very adaptable animals which could allow them to adapt quickly to changing environmental conditions.
Even though the study did not attempt to correlate temperature trends spatially or temporally to trends in the cephalopod population or examine other explanations for the rising population, media outlets promptly claimed the study showed that “Swarms of Octopus Are Taking Over the Oceans” due to global warming.
“The new study linking cephalopod population increases to human-caused climate change is long on speculation and short on facts,” Chip Knappenberger, climate scientist at the libertarian Cato Institute, told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “There are undoubtedly complex interactions between the large number of factors at play in shaping the reported cephalopod trends, although the authors look at none of them in detail. To prominently play up the role of global warming is to elevate hype over substance—an all too common characteristic of this type of study.”
Knappenberger pointed out in a blog post scientists and media outlets have an “overwhelming tendency to relate global warming to all manner of bad things and a great hesitation to suggest a potential link when the outcome is seemingly beneficial.” He points out that the science behind global warming doesn’t “make for great scare stories. Global-warming-fueled bands of marauding octopuses and giant squid certainly do.”
The study’s lead author believes the impacts are extremely unclear, but states in the press release that “increases in cephalopod populations could benefit marine predators which are reliant on them for food, as well as human communities reliant on them as a fisheries resource.”
This is the latest scientific study to show nature is considerably more resilient to global warming than scientists suspected. Global warming even has many positive environmental impacts such as helping Canadian trees recover from a devastating insect infestation, creating more food for fish in the ocean, making life easier for Canadian moose and causing deserts to bloom with foliage.
The end of El Niño sees temperatures soar across the world
Temperature peaks typically occur towards the end of El Niño
CONDITIONS in India are road-meltingly hot: on May 19th residents of Phalodi, a city in the north of the country, had to cope with temperatures of 51°C—the highest since records there began. Records are tumbling elsewhere, too. According to the latest data from America’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 13 of the 15 highest monthly temperature anomalies have occurred since February 2015. The average temperature over land and ocean surfaces in April was 1.10°C above last century’s average (see map). The current year will almost certainly be the warmest on record, and probably by the largest margin to date.
A Pacific-wide climatic phenomenon known as El Niño (“The Boy” in Spanish) helps explain the heat. In non-Niño years, trade winds blow warm water to the west, where it pools in the western tropical Pacific. Cooler water is drawn up from the depths to the surface in the Pacific’s east as a result, in a process known as upwelling. Every two to seven years, the pool of warm water sloshes back eastwards when the trade winds weaken or even reverse; this is El Niño in action. The interaction of the Pacific Ocean and the atmosphere is part of a cycle called El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO).
This spilling of the warm pool across the tropical Pacific pushes up global surface temperatures. The consequent increase in atmospheric heat and moisture brings deluges to south-eastern South America and western North America, and drought to India, Australia, Indonesia and southern Africa. Niño-like conditions first began in mid-2014, but the full event did not emerge for another year. It then proved one of the strongest ever recorded.
On May 24th Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) declared El Niño finished, as surface temperatures across the tropical Pacific have cooled over the past two weeks. What follows? Temperature peaks typically occur towards the end of El Niño, according to Kevin Trenberth from the National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado. BOM says that there is a 50% chance that La Niña, another phase of ENSO and one associated with unusually low surface temperatures in the eastern Pacific, will form this year. Cooler weather for south-eastern Asia and western South America could accompany it.
Australian wind farm companies going broke
In the hard-hitting Danish docu-drama, Follow the Money, the Armani suited executives of Energreen play a game of cat and mouse with the Fraud Squad, pumping up the value of their wind farm ‘assets’, while erasing anything from their books that investors might reasonably conclude were liabilities. Some viewers might call it ‘creative accounting’, others good old-fashioned ‘fraud’.
The apparent purpose of Energreen’s book keeping shenanigans is to lure in a steady stream of gullible investors to keep the whole circus afloat, long enough for those at the top of the Pyramid to line their pockets and set up bolt-holes in Brazil (or any other sunny place without an extradition treaty).
In terms of duping creditors and investors Energreen’s on-screen exploits aren’t that far from the truth. Wind back the clock on the story of Australia’s most notorious wind power outfit, Infigen and its ‘Phoenix’ rising start and the parallels are uncanny.
In 2009 Infigen magically emerged from the ashes of Babcock & Brown (which took creditors and investors for a lazy $10 billion). Despite its ashen origins Infigen hardly set the world on fire, managing to destroy $millions in shareholder value, in a matter of months.
Drowning in debt, it was forced by its financiers to offload its US wind farm ‘assets’ in a fire sale last year. Hoping to pocket over $500 million from that sale, it collected a little over half that – adding further to its balance sheet’s woes.
It then went on to lose another $304 million last year – blaming its dwindling revenue on, of all things, the WIND! That dismal result took its total losses to a lazy $448 million, since 2011.
However, for all the delusional confidence exuded by Miles George & Co about Infigen and its wind power ‘assets’, it seems that its owners are hell-bent on getting out before yet another Ponzi scheme collapses.
Much more HERE (See the original for links & graphics)
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Posted by JR at 12:30 AM