Sunday, March 25, 2018

Global carbon emissions have hit a record high

All the Greenie attacks on our standard of living have achieved nothing -- even by Greenie standards

Global energy-related carbon emissions rose to a historic high of 32.5 gigatons last year, after three years of being flat, due to higher energy demand and the slowing of energy efficiency improvements, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said.

Global energy demand rose by 2.1 percent last year to 14,050 million tonnes of oil equivalent, more than twice the previous year’s rate, boosted by strong economic growth, according to preliminary estimates from the IEA.

Energy demand rose by 0.9 percent in 2016 and 0.9 percent on average over the previous five years.

Over 70 percent of global energy demand growth was met by oil, natural gas and coal, while renewables accounted for almost all of the rest, the IEA said in a report.

Improvements in energy efficiency slowed last year. As a result of these trends, global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions increased by 1.4 percent in 2017 to 32.5 gigatons, a record high.

“The significant growth in global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions in 2017 tells us that current efforts to combat climate change are far from sufficient,” said Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director.

“For example, there has been a dramatic slowdown in the rate of improvement in global energy efficiency as policy makers have put less focus in this area.”

At talks in Germany late last year among almost 200 nations about details of a global climate accord, scientists presented data showing that world carbon emissions were set to rise 2 percent in 2017 to a new record.


BBC’s Fake Climate Claims Now Becoming A Habit

By Paul Homewood

Accuracy is one the fundamental requirements imposed on the BBC by its Charter.

For years, however, it has been sorely lacking in its handling of climate related matters.

Most of the time, the BBC gets away with it, simply because people don’t realise it, or if they do don’t complain, or if they do are fobbed off all too easily.

However in recent months, it has been forced to retract three totally fallacious claims, which could and should have been avoided with a few simple checks.

1) The first concerned a report on the World at One last march, which discussed rising sea levels around Florida:

The BBC correspondent, Nick Bryant made the following comment:

"Sea levels at Miami are rising at ten times the global rate"

When I complained, the BBC’s first response, as usual, was to prevaricate and ignore the specifics of my complaint completely.

Only after I pursued matters to the Executive Complaints Unit were they finally forced to retract their claim, which was so utterly ridiculous that it should have set alarm bells ringing at the outset.

2) Then in October 2017, the BBC broadcast an episode of “Russia with Simon Reeve”.

The programme made certain claims about reindeer in northern Russia, as Lord Lawson of GWPF noted in his letter of complaint to the BBC:

Lord Lawson pointed out that on the contrary reindeer populations were stable, and in some cases increasing.

Again the BBC were forced to issue a retraction, as the GWPF reported in January this year:

"The alarming claim that reindeer populations across Northern Russia were “in steep decline because of climate change”, was made during the first episode of the recent BBC 2 series: Russia with Simon Reeve.

Writing to the BBC Complaints department, Lord Lawson pointed out that according to a 2016 study, 17 out of 19 sub-populations of Eurasian Reindeer were now either increasing in number, or had a stable population trend.

The BBC have now accepted this evidence, and have published a correction which reads: “This programme suggested that many reindeer populations are in steep decline because of climate change. It would have been more accurate to say that many reindeer populations are threatened by it.”

Indeed it would have been less inaccurate, given that the claim is blatantly false. However, even the claim that they are “threatened” is highly questionable given their growing populations.

The false alarm highlights the BBC’s habitual attempts to exaggerate the consequences of climate change and to ignore scientific evidence that contradicts climate alarmism.

3) Then in December 2017, one of the BBC’s weather forecasters ran an article on BBC Online, provocatively headlined “Is Climate Change Making Hurricanes Worse?”

After listing some of the major hurricane events of 2017, but with no attempt to put them into historical perspective, the piece ended with this “statement of fact”:

"A warmer world is bringing us a greater number of hurricanes and a greater risk of a hurricane becoming the most powerful category 5"

There is absolutely no evidence that this is the case, as even the IPCC have been forced to admit.

My first complaint was fobbed off, and only after I resubmitted my complaint, complete with a list of scientific references and graphs did they grudgingly admit that their claim was utterly false.

The offending sentence has now been deleted, and a correction added:


Once may be an accident, twice a coincidence. But three times in just a few months suggests a pattern. These events pose a number of questions:

1) Who is feeding the reporters with these fake claims?

It is hard to believe that they are making them up themselves. What you think of BBC reporters, they are professionals who have spent their careers learning how to build stories, based either on their own research, or on what they have been told.

So, have these fake claims originated from somewhere like Greenpeace?

2) Why were the claims not spotted and checked out beforehand by programme editors, whose job it is to do so?

It is hard to avoid the conclusion that, as Booker suggested, there is a blind, unthinking global warming groupthink at work here.

Sea level rise in Florida? Well, we all know Miami is soon going to drown!

Reindeers dying because of global warming? Well, that nice man from WWF told us, and he would not lie, would he!

Hurricanes getting worse? Well, that’s what the models say!

There is a third question – why is this continued bad reporting tolerated by the BBC powers that be?

But I think we all know the answer to that!

More HERE  (See the original for links, graphics etc.)

Canada: A billion-dollar plan no one should follow

In its March 19 Speech from the Throne, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne's government asserted, “you cannot be serious about lowering emissions and fighting climate change without a price on carbon pollution.”

Nowhere did the speech specify what this supposed pollution actually is. That’s probably because, if it did, millions of Canadians would realize that the Wynne government is wasting billions of dollars trying to control a non-pollutant in the forlorn hope that reducing the province’s minimal contribution to worldwide emissions of this non-pollutant will have a beneficial effect on Earth’s complex and ever-changing climate.

In a March 14 press release, Wynne said that her government is “building a cleaner, low-carbon Ontario.” But carbon is not unclean. Carbon is a solid, naturally occurring, non-toxic element found in all living things. It forms thousands of compounds – far more than any other element. Medicines, trees, oil, natural gas, plastics, paints, food crops, and even our bodies are made of carbon compounds.
Pure carbon occurs in nature mainly in the forms of graphite and diamonds. They are certainly not Premier Wynne’s target.

So, what is the “carbon pollution” she is concerned about? Is she speaking about reducing soot emissions from cars and power plants? Amorphous carbon, carbon without a fixed atomic structure, is the main ingredient in soot, which we certainly do need to control. Power plants have already done a good job reducing soot and other actual, dangerous pollutants. So have cars.

Instead, the premier is crusading against emissions of one specific carbon compound: carbon dioxide, or CO2. Ignoring the oxygen atoms and calling CO2 “carbon” makes about as much sense as ignoring the oxygen in water (H2O) and calling it “hydrogen.”

Calling CO2 “carbon,” or worse “carbon pollution,” causes people to think of it as something dirty and thus important to restrict. Calling carbon dioxide by its proper name would help people remember that, regardless of its role in climate change (a point of intense debate among scientists), CO2 is really an invisible gas essential to plant photosynthesis, and thus to all life. Indeed, without at least 200 parts per million (ppm) of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere, most life on Earth would cease to exist.

We are actually near the lowest level of atmospheric CO2 in Earth’s history. Around 440 million years ago, CO2 was over ten times higher than today’s level, while Earth was stuck in one of the coldest periods in the entire geologic and modern record.

The climate models’ assumption that temperature is driven by CO2 is clearly wrong. In fact, it’s the other way around. Planetary temperatures largely control atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. The warmer the air and ocean waters get, the more CO2 is released from oceans into the atmosphere; the colder the seas, the more carbon dioxide they retain.

Wynne does not seem to understand this, or the fact that commercial greenhouse operators routinely run their internal atmospheres at up to 1,500 ppm CO2 – for a good reason. Plants inside grow far faster, more efficiently and with less water than at the low 400 ppm found outside in Earth’s atmosphere.

Climate Change Reconsidered II: Biological Impacts, a report from the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, cites over 1,000 peer-reviewed studies that document how the productivity of forests and grasslands has risen as CO2 levels have increased – not just in recent decades, but in past centuries.

Moreover, increasing carbon dioxide levels pose no direct hazard to human health. CO2 in submarines can reach levels above 10,000 ppm, 25 times current atmospheric levels, with no harmful effects on the crews.

Finally, Wynne mixes up “the government's actions on climate change” with “making our air cleaner.” The Speech from the Throne switches back and forth between the two, as if they were related.

(We hope it’s a mistake, and not a deliberate attempt to mislead people and promote expensive and damaging public policies.)

Activists do this often when they claim CO2 emission controls will bring important pollution reduction co-benefits. There is no basis for this assertion. US Environmental Protection Agency data show that total emissions of six major air pollutants dropped 62% since 1980, amid a 14% increase in CO2 emissions. Using climate regulations to reduce pollution is obviously an expensive blunder.

Wynne’s ‘carbon pollution’ mistake is dangerous because it dumbs down a vitally important science debate, inappropriately sways millions of people, and ultimately drives terrible government policies.

The Premier says climate change is a fight that “our children and grandchildren can’t afford for us to lose.” What our children and grandchildren really cannot afford is picking up the tab for the Wynne’s government’s billion dollar plans to “lead the world” on reducing plant food that is “greening” our planet, rolling back deserts, and enabling us to grow more food from less land.

Highly complex climate and weather systems are now, and always have been, driven by fluctuations in the sun’s energy output, cosmic rays, ocean currents, volcanic activity and dozens of other powerful natural forces, over which humans have absolutely no control

So, the Ontario government’s CO2 reduction plans will obviously do nothing to “protect” Earth’s climate. But they will drive up energy prices, force companies to spend billions more on electricity and fuels, kill countless jobs, hurt poor and working class families the most, and reduce forest, grassland and crop growth.

Ontario’s plan to price CO2 emissions is a prime example of what countries, states and provinces throughout the world should avoid.


Scott Pruitt is bringing transparency to the EPA; why is the Church of Man-made Climate Change angry about that?

Earlier this week Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt announced a policy change that is driving several “scientists” mad. Pruitt announced the EPA would no longer use “science” from outside groups that refuse to share data. This has become a problem for the agency because previous administrations would receive reports from outside groups and make decisions based on the report without reviewing the data. Any scientist will be able to tell you junk data going in means junk results coming out.

In an interview given to The Daily Caller, Pruitt stated, “If we use a third party to engage in scientific review or inquiry, and that’s the basis of rule-making, you and every American citizen across the country deserve to know what’s the data, what’s the methodology that was used to reach that conclusion that was the underpinning of what—rules that were adopted by this agency.”

Pruitt continued, “When we do contract that science out, sometimes the findings are published; we make that part of our rule-making processes, but then we don’t publish the methodology and data that went into those findings because the third party who did the study won’t give it to us.”

Many climate change alarmists are already howling at the moon because of the decision. They feel like they should be able to submit work to the government without having to show their work, makes you wonder if they’ve ever taken a high-school math class. What is not up for debate is the enormous weight given to the studies and the potential harm to the U.S. economy the studies present.

Michael Bastasch, reporting for the Daily Signal, notes, “The EPA has primarily relied on two 1990s studies linking fine particulate pollution to premature death. Neither of the studies have made their data public, but the EPA used their findings to justify sweeping air quality regulations.” These air quality regulations end up putting thousands of people out of work, without ever having to show the data that led to the regulations.

Another of the more famous “studies” is Michael Mann’s hockey stick graph. Al Gore even used it in his film an Inconvenient Truth, you may remember it as a documentary that hasn’t gotten one prediction right. The “hockey stick” graph has been used by just about every environmental group in the world to prove man-made climate change. The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has used the graph in the past to justify its barbaric environmental recommendations.

Mann just lost a libel lawsuit in Canada. Mann initiated the suit against Canadian Climatologist, Dr. Tim Ball after Ball, using more reliable and publicly available data, disproved Mann’s famous hockey stick graph. In fact, Tim Ball’s graph looks nothing like Mann’s graph. The twist in the case had Mann failing to meet a court-ordered deadline to hand over the data he used to get his graph. What was Mann trying to hide?

One of the U.S. government’s own agencies has even been caught manipulating climate data. A former principal scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA), John Bates, accused his former agency of manipulating data to erase the global warming pause. Bates blasted the agency for the faulty science because he believed the 2015 report was rushed to get President Obama’s desk before the Paris Climate Summit. Science that impacts thousands of jobs and millions of families should not be rushed.

Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning stated, “transparency about the scientific method used to come to conclusions that have major public policy impacts, is essential in order for others to evaluate and attempt to replicate the findings. Every grade school child learns that for science to be legitimate, someone doing the exact same process have to come up with the same results. It’s called falsifiability. Data that cannot be examined and potentially falsified simply must not be accepted by the government. Transparency is the key to ending politically driven science.”

It is important to note, Pruitt is not ruling out the studies. All the studies have to do is show their work. Provide the raw data to ensure there has been no data manipulation to reach a preconceived conclusion. Considering most of the scientists perform the studies using federally funded research grants, the data belongs to the American taxpayer. If the “scientists” have nothing to hide, they should have nothing to fear.

U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), Chairman of the Space, Science, and Technology Committee, has been fighting the transparency battle for years. Chairman Smith has introduced H.R. 1430, the Honest and Open New EPA Science Treatment Act of 2017. The bill states:

“The Administrator shall not propose, finalize, or disseminate a covered action unless all scientific and technical information relied on to support such covered action is—(A) the best available science; (B) specifically identified; and (C) publicly available online in a manner that is sufficient for independent analysis and substantial reproduction of research results, except that any personally identifiable information, trade secrets, or commercial or financial information obtained from a person and privileged or confidential, shall be redacted prior to public availability.”

Doesn’t seem like too much to ask. Every student from the third grade to a Ph.D. must do the same thing, show your work so that it can potentially be falsified. Otherwise it’s not really scientific.

Scott Pruitt is to be commended for this action, but more can be done. The Senate must act to ensure secret science is no longer used to justify job-killing regulations. The House has already done its job; it is now up to the Senate to ensure transparency.


Happy Human Achievement Hour: A Better Alternative to ‘Earth Hour’

There is a profound intellectual temptation toward viewing the world through the lens of our favorite ideas. Powerful ideas can inspire, shape how we interpret the world, and provide emotional solace during tempestuous times. But no matter how attractive and interesting or how well they explain the world around us, the core of life remains what we do. It is in the actions of mankind that we can see how people adapt to challenges, achieve progress and, hopefully, make life better for each other.

Every year, we each have the opportunity to make the fullest use of 8,760 hours. Remarkably, people from all walks of life in a wide array of cultures engage in very similar behaviors for most of that time. Foremost, people sleep or work for approximately two-thirds of every day. We also engage in leisure, education, household upkeep, and the care of loved ones. Here at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, we spend a great deal of our time developing ideas to improve how we govern, in order to advance the health, welfare, and economic station of people everywhere.

This is why several years ago we launched Human Achievement Hour, an annual celebration of innovation and progress. During this hour—this year, Saturday, March 24th from 8:30pm to 9:30pm—people around the world pay tribute to human ingenuity and advancements in every field from health and energy to communications and transportation. Originally launched as an alternative to “Earth Hour,” an activist campaign that calls on people to show their concern about climate change by turning off their lights, Human Achievement Hour challenges people to celebrate human ingenuity and our ability to solve problems creatively.

From exploration of the cosmos to investigation of the most minute chemical interactions within the human body, we are wired with a natural curiosity that leads to discovery and, sometimes, to transformative achievements.

Discoveries, inventions, and the deployment of the technological advances that they make possible may be the most visible elements of human achievement. However, at CEI we take a broad view and also celebrate the less visible, even mundane, aspects of human achievement. The humane interactions of life, the simple one-to-one conversations that are the social glue allowing people to trade information, learn and grow, signal interest, or exchange one good for another are the essential elements of a market, and of society itself.

We each have a choice to make about the ideas that shape our behavior. Do we believe that our lives are on an inescapably downward trajectory, that our ability to solve problems today—large and small—is fixed, and that progress is measured by metering out scarce and depleting resources? Or, can we see a dynamic future in which the world is full of opportunity and room for individuals, communities, and whole regions to adapt to what comes next?

I firmly hold the latter view. And for one of the 8,760 hours each year it is good to both reflect upon it (by thinking about it) as well as to promote it (by doing something with it).

To one and all, Happy Human Achievement Hour!




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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