Thursday, April 06, 2017

Interior Secretary: Ending War on Coal Necessary for Environmental Reasons, Jobs, National Security

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said Monday at the White House that ending the war on coal was important for environmental reasons, jobs and national security.

Zinke said he signed directives on his first day in office to expand public access to public lands - “important if you’re in the west, especially in the far west as Montana is.”

“We made sure we increased opportunities for traditional hunting, fishing, and conservation efforts, and we’ve invested millions across 12 states on preserving our conservation efforts there,” the Interior secretary said.

“On energy, much of last week was held on energy. We held one of our most successful leases - 122,000 acres for wind development on federal lands off Kittyhawk, North Carolina,” Zinke said.

“We also stopped the war on coal by continuing a coal leasing program and established an oversight committee to review and analyze across the board rents, royalties on our federal lands with the objective of number one, being transparent, number two, being Reagan - trust but verify, and number three, making sure that taxpayers that own the public lands are getting fair value, he added.

Zinke was at the White House to accept a check from the president that represented his first quarter earnings, which the president donated to the National Park Service.

“For those that don’t know me, I get my inspiration from Teddy Roosevelt, and the motto now in the Department of the Interior if you got to Yellowstone and have the opportunity to look at the Roosevelt Arch, inscribed in for the benefit and enjoyment of the people, and that’s our pledge.

When asked whether ending the war on coal runs contrary to what former President Theodore Roosevelt would have wanted, Zinke said, “Three things. One is environmentally, it’s better to produce energy here under reasonable regulation than watch it get produced overseas with none. Secondly, jobs matter. There’s a social cost of not having a job. In some of our communities, coal, mining, forestry are the only job,” Zinke said.

And third, Zinke said, it’s about national security. “It is better to make sure we’re not held hostage on our energy needs in this country, and like you, I don’t want my kids, sons, and daughters to have to fight for war over energy resources we have here, so national security is critical in our energy picture,” he said.

“The world is safer when America is stronger, and America is strongest not being dependent on foreign sources for energy. We can do it here right, and we will,” Zinke added.

“I’m the steward, and certainly, we’re not going to sell or transfer public land, and I don’t pick winners and losers, so coal isn’t getting any more of a better deal than anything else. … I want to make sure that what we do is cost effective, and it produces reliable, abundant, and affordable energy,” he said.

When asked if would return the land to its original pristine condition, Zinke said during his time as a Boy Scout, he was taught “that when you leave a campground, you leave it in the same or better condition you found it, and that’s why we’re looking at royalties and make sure we have a reclamation program that makes sense.”

“All of us want clean air, clean water, and I’m concerned as well as you are to make sure what we’re doing is in the best interest of the public in perpetuity,” he added.


Judicial Watch Sues for Records Between Key Obama Scientists Involved in Global Warming Controversies

Judicial Watch has filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the Department of Commerce to obtain all records of communications between two top scientists in the Obama administration who "heavily influenced" the government's "climate change policy and its backing of the Paris Agreement," said the government watchdog group in a statement.

The records are being sought because they could shed light on a scandal about alleged misuse of climate data to hype global warming and because the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a component of the Commerce Department, refused to comply with a Feb. 6 FOIA request for the data.

"This new lawsuit could result in the release of emails that will help Americans understand how Obama administration officials may have mishandled scientific data to advance the political agenda of global warming alarmism," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

Judicial Watch is seeking all records of communications from January 20, 2009 to January 20, 2017 between NOAA scientist Thomas Karl and John Holdren, the former director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Holdren, as reported by, has written in support of worldwide wealth redistribution, an end to the auto industry, economic de-development of the United States, and his view that born babies are not yet "human beings."

Judicial Watch quotes from a Daily Mail newspaper report about a scandal involving Thomas Karl, who was accused by then-fellow NOAA scientist John Bates of allegedly manipulating global warming data to refute the idea that there has been a pause in global warming since 1998, which apparently would undermine the idea that man-made greenhouse gases contribute to climate change.

Dr. Bates, who is highly respected and helped craft the NOAA's internal evaluation procedures, claims the NOAA "breached its own rules on scientific integrity when it published the sensational but flawed report, aimed at making the maximum possible impact on world leaders including Barack Obama and David Cameron at the U.N. climate conference in Paris in 2015," reported the Daily Mail.

"The report claimed that the 'pause' or 'slowdown' in global warming in the period since 1998 -- revealed by U.N. scientists in 2013 -- never existed, and that world temperatures had been rising faster than scientists expected," said the report. But Dr. Bates provided "irrefutable evidence that the paper was based on misleading, 'unverified' data," and "it was never subjected to NOAA's rigorous internal evaluation process, which Bates devised," reported the Daily Mail.

"His vehement objections to the publication of the faulty data were overridden by his NOAA superiors in what he describes as a 'blatant attempt to intensify the impact' of what became known as the Pausebuster paper," stated the report. Bates accused Thomas Karl, the paper's lead author, of "insisting on decisions and scientific choices that maximized warming and minimized documentation," said the Daily Mail, "in an effort to discredit the notion of a global warming pause, rushed so that he could time publication to influence national and international deliberations on climate policy."

The newspaper further reported that Thomas Karl had a "hotline to the White House through his long association with President Obama's science adviser, John Holdren."

In its statement, Judicial Watch also noted that it is suing for records of communications from NOAA officials about their data gathering and methodology used to justify the "Pausebuster" study, documents that had also been withheld from Congress.


Is Princess Anne right to disagree with her brother Prince Charles about the benefits of GM crops?

GM's are simply man made designer mutations. The outcry against them may have a very subtle but heinous motive. There is a whole Greenie culture that does not believe in aid to the poor and behind this is the intent to control world population through natural holocaust. What they fail to recognize is that healthy, educated cultures develop their own population controls. But then there are those that are against everything. They fail to see good any anything and they revel at any movement that is against something. We live in hate-filled times.

Those who spread misinformation and lies about GM foods have caused the disabilities and deaths of millions. Any commercially available GM crop has been rigorously tested and found to be safe, and they are widespread in the US without incident.

Many could transform millions of lives. Golden Rice is modified to contain higher levels of Vitamin A, for the 2m people who die every year from vitamin A deficiency and the 500,000 children who go blind. Its patents are open source and licences are free, as with many other GM crops.

But its progress has been delayed needlessly. Environmentalist vandals have destroyed fields of it being used in safety trials and Greenpeace has lobbied the governments of poor countries to ban it. Delays in India alone have cost an estimated 1,424,000 life years.

Other GM crops can make food cheaper by withstanding frost better, growing more quickly, or rotting more slowly. Shame on Prince Charles for denying the science, and thank goodness his sister has a bit more sense.


Save the environment — don't buy local

Those who encourage us to buy locally often do so with the view that reduced transport distances will result in less CO2 emissions. Seems simple, but what such people neglect is the fact that the majority of emissions associated with getting products (particularly food products) from producer to consumer are not from transport. Rather, the majority of emissions come from production.

A paper published by Christopher L. Weber and H. Scott Matthews in 2008 found that the Greenhouse Gas emissions associated with food are dominated by the production phase which…

contributes 83% of the average American household’s yearly footprint for food consumption. Transportation as a whole represents only 11% of life-cycle Greenhouse gas emissions, and final delivery from producer to retail contributes only 4%.

Production is less energy intensive when it takes place in optimal weather conditions, on large scale farms with machinery and fertilizer to make things incredibly efficient.

Not too long ago, DEFRA released a report saying that the carbon footprint of Spanish grown tomatoes is smaller than that of UK grown tomatoes. Clearly something very similar is happens in the UK.

It might also be worth mentioning that food (especially food that must travel long distances) is generally transported in bulk, increasing efficiency. Further, the majority of food miles are from the supermarket to fridge, which will not change, even if your food is produced locally. Plus, food from far abroad is often cheaper than local alternatives. In this way, globalisation is saving you money, and saving the environment.

Another paper in 2000 revealed the exact same thing applies with flowers. Economists Vringer and Blok compared the energy use associated with Dutch and Kenyan cut flower production. Air freighted Kenyan roses transported to Europe were found to have a lower total energy footprint than the Dutch grown roses.

So perhaps this mother’s day, we should aim to buy both food and flowers from as far afield as possible, because we don’t just love our mothers, but we also love the environment.


The ‘longest war’ that Australia is not prepared for

It might more aptly be described as the "phoniest" war. The blurb below is inspired by a visit to Australia by a prominent  American Warmist and elitist schmoozer.  Her claims are at least mostly reported cautiously below.  It is all "is believed to have been" and "is thought to have created".  One is of course equally at liberty to believe and think the opposite.

It is true that poor cropping conditions in the Middle East led to food shortages but that was  not because of global warming.  Why?  Because there was no global warming during the period concerned.  The drought (roughly from 2005 to 2011) behind the crop failures occurred in the middle of the 21st century warming "hiatus". So nothing at that time CAN be attributed to warming.  Neither droughts in the Middle East nor anything else can be caused by something that does not exist.

And so it goes.  It is all false attribution below.  She predictably blames recent Barrier Reef bleaching on global warming.  And it may be true that waters in Northeastern Australia are warmer than usual at the moment, but that is NOT any part of anthropogenic global warming.

Why?  Because anthropogenic global warming is said to be caused by increasing concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere.  But there have been NO increases in CO2 in the atmosphere recently. Cape Grim tells us that CO2 levels have been plateaued on 401ppm since last July (midwinter)  So anything -- including coral bleaching -- that happened in the recent summer is NOT due to a rise in CO2.

It's all just BS unfounded assertions below

CLIMATE change is already acknowledged as a national security risk in the US but Australia seems unprepared for what some experts are calling “the longest war”.

Sherri Goodman, a former Pentagon and US Department of Defence official, has helped to develop groundbreaking reports on the links between climate change and national security.

While Australians may not yet recognise the risks, Ms Goodman told that in the US, the link was widely accepted within the military and national security leadership.

Even Donald Trump’s new Secretary of Defence James Mattis told the Senate Armed Services Committee last month that climate change was a threat to the country’s troops.

“Climate change is impacting stability in areas of the world where our troops are operating today,” Mattis reportedly confirmed in a statement.

Ms Goodman, who coined the term “threat multiplier” to describe the climate change risk, said Australia is not immune to its potentially devastating impacts.

So far, climate change is believed to have been a factor in conflicts in Syria, Iraq and Egypt.

Ms Goodman said climate change would create prolonged instability and cause underlying tensions to seep out through a variety of conflicts.

Extreme drought is thought to have created conditions in Syria and Iraq for the rise of Islamic State, as well as the Arab Spring in Egypt.

“The food crisis was the spark that lit the match for the Arab Spring because there were wheat shortages in Russia and Ukraine, and Russia stopped exporting wheat after a prolonged drought,” Ms Goodman said.

“That led to a food shortage in Egypt and in other Arab Spring nations.”

Ms Goodman said Australia needed to better understand these types of connections so it could prepare and take steps, not just to respond when people’s lives were at risk during a natural disaster.

“We need to understand where droughts and water scarcity and extreme weather events are becoming forcing factors in conflicts,” she said.

“The climate is continuing to change because of the carbon that we’ve put into the system and so we need to understand these changes and then we need to be able to respond to them.”

She said Australia was not well prepared for this “longest war”, particularly as many political leaders did not accept climate change posed any problem to future prosperity.

Ms Goodman said she hoped recent extreme weather events like Cyclone Debbie, heatwaves and bushfires would be a “wake up call”.

“You have the capability, you have the power within in Australia to make the country more resilient,” she said.

“You’re already sort of a resource power house, but you want to be one that’s sustainable and continues its economic vitality for the rest of this century, and the way to do that is to appreciate the full range of both risks and opportunities.”


Australia has already been given a recent taste of the havoc that extreme weather can bring, with homeowners complaining of looting in the aftermath of flooding and wild weather created by Cyclone Debbie.

But while Australia is a robust economy and has a stable political regime, many of our neighbours are not so lucky.

“The Asia Pacific region is ‘disaster alley’ for extreme weather events and natural disasters,” Ms Goodman said.

“The intensity of these events have been increasing in recent years, most likely fuelled by higher Pacific Ocean temperatures,” she said.

As one example Ms Goodman highlighted the situation in the Philippines, which was one of the countries most at risk of climate change due to sea level rise and storm surges.

Importantly, it was also politically unstable, where insurgents are creating problems for an authoritarian government.

“It wouldn’t take that much to push that country over the edge and these are countries right in your region,” she said.

Climate change has also been established as the biggest threat to the Great Barrier Reef, which supports 70,000 jobs within the region.

“I had the great privilege 20 years ago ... to dive in the Great Barrier Reef and it’s one of the most beautiful sites I’ve ever seen in my life,” Ms Goodman said.

“Now that I know that the bleaching has changed the corals, I don’t know that I’d come back here right now. And I’m sure I’m not alone in my thinking.”

While Australia’s economy may be able to survive the loss of tourism if the Great Barrier Reef was to die, Ms Goodman said other countries like Indonesia and Malaysia, may not.

“Australia is a robust economy and a resilient society but you are here as part of the coral triangle,” she said.

“Can their economies withstand long-term and perhaps, permanent bleaching? I don’t know. But I think we should be all very concerned about that.”

Australia is also surrounded by low lying Pacific Islands where whole populations are at risk of being flooded and losing their sovereignty within our lifetimes.

“People get desperate when they lose their homes, their food, their shelter, their water,” Ms Goodman said.

“Climate change acts as an accelerant of instability,” she said.

While it may not be the only cause acting to create this, climate change can aggravate existing threats like terrorism, the development of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, corruption and political instability.

“So climate becomes a threat multiplier on all of these existing threats,” she said.



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   main.html or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  

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