Sunday, July 15, 2018

Global Cooling: Global Temps Have Dropped By 0.65 C Since 2016

The failure of the atmosphere to warm in accordance with alarmist predictions is making it harder and harder to come up with a bona fide story that can scare you.
In a post a few days ago, I noted that “the whole climate issue seems to have mostly disappeared from the news lately.”  Commenter niceguyeddie responded by giving me a link to the Washington Post (eddie called it “the ‘other’ Pravda”), and an article of July 5 by a guy named Jason Samenow headlined “Red-hot planet: All-time heat records have been set all over the world during the past week.”

 In the intervening week since this article, a few people on the internet have been busy making mincemeat of Samenow’s rather pitiful effort.  For MC readers who don’t go out searching the internet regularly for real information on climate to combat the propaganda from the various Pravdas out there, I thought I would do the public service of presenting some of this real information here.

First, some basic background is needed to develop appropriate bullshit radar on this subject.  If you follow climate or weather information even a little, you will already know that on any given day, somewhere in the world, some weather station, or more likely multiple stations, is recording an “all time high” temperature for the particular day in question, while some other weather station, or maybe multiple stations, is recording an “all time low.”  It follows that the fact that multiple “all time high” records were set during the course of a week tells you nothing about climate change.  There could have been even more all time lows, and the overall average could have gone down, no matter how many “all time highs” were recorded.

Any reader of any intelligence whatsoever will immediately be asking, don’t just tell me about “all time highs,” but tell me what is the overall picture?  How many all time lows were there?  What is happening with the “average” temperature?  You will not be surprised to learn that Samenow does not provide the answers to those questions.  In other words, his article is not intended to provide useful information to the intelligent reader, but rather to propagandize those lacking in either basic background information or critical thinking ability or both.

There is an obvious source for the answer to the last question as to what is happening with the “average,” and that is the easily-available UAH global lower troposphere record, derived from satellite sensors.  That record exists from 1979 to present.  Here is the latest chart from UAH going through the end of June 2018:

So with that simple first step, we know that the “average” world temperature for June 2018 was +0.21 deg C above the 1981 – 2010 mean.  That represented a decline of about 0.65 deg C from the all time high of this 39-year record, which was reached in early 2016.  The 0.65 deg C decline represented more than 75% of the amount by which the average temperature had exceeded the 1981 – 2010 mean at the highest point.  Suddenly the fact that some large number of “all time highs” was being set at the end of June does not seem very significant.

But it’s still fun to look at what Samenow claims for his “all time highs,” to see how real they are, or whether we are dealing with more of the usual “fake news.”  This gets pretty bad. […]

As you can see, the failure of the atmosphere to warm in accordance with alarmist predictions is making it harder and harder to come up with a bona fide story that can scare you.  They are reduced to cherry-picking some unrepresentative data points and leaving out all of the relevant context.  It’s no wonder the reporting on this is becoming increasingly scarce.

For you, the moral of the story is, if you want some real information as to whether the world is warming or cooling, and by how much, skip the propaganda at the various Pravdas, and go for the UAH lower troposphere satellite record.  It is available in the form at the top of this post, at, updated monthly.


Christopher Booker: Groupthink On Climate Change Ignores Inconvenient Facts

Since we’ve now been living with the global warming story for 30 years, it might seem hard to believe that science could now come up with anything that would enable us to see that story in a wholly new light. But that is what I am suggesting in a new paper, just published in the UK by the Global Warming Policy Foundation, thanks to a book called Groupthink, written more than 40 years ago by a professor of psychology at Yale, Irving Janis.

What Janis did was to define scientifically just how what he called groupthink operates, according to three basic rules. And what my paper tries to show is the astonishing degree to which they explain so much that many have long found puzzling about the global warming story.

Janis’s first rule is that a group of people come to share a particular way of looking at the world which may seem hugely important to them but which turns out not to have been based on looking properly at all the evidence. It is therefore just a shared, untested belief.

Rule two is that, because they have shut their minds to any evidence which might contradict their belief, they like to insist that it is supported by a “consensus”. The one thing those caught up in groupthink cannot tolerate is that anyone should question it.

This leads on to the third rule, which is that they cannot properly debate the matter with those who disagree with their belief. Anyone holding a contrary view must simply be ignored, ridiculed and dismissed as not worth listening to.

What my paper does is look again at the entire global warming story in the light of Janis’s rules, and to show how consistently they explain so much of the way it has unfolded all the way through.

The alarm over man-made climate change was first exploded on the world in 1988 by a tiny group of scientists who had become convinced that, because both CO2 levels and global temperatures were rising, one must be the cause of the other. Unless something very drastic was done, they urged, the planet was heading for catastrophe.

In November that year two of these fervent believers in what they called “human-induced climate change” were authorised to set up the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the IPCC. This would report to the world’s politicians on the basis of computer models programmed, according to their theory, to predict just how fast the world was likely to heat up over the next 100 years.

With startling speed, their theory was soon proclaimed as being supported by a scientific “consensus”, backed by governments, all the main scientific journals and institutions, environmental pressure groups and the media.

In fact right from the start, many scientists, like the eminent physicist Richard Lindzen of MIT, were highly sceptical, both of the theory itself and of those computer models. These, as Lindzen wrote, were so narrowly focused on CO2 that they were far too simplistic to allow for all the other natural factors which shape the earth’s climate.

But such dissenters were ignored. And for nearly 20 years the “consensus” rolled on, ever more extreme in its apocalyptic claims, with each new IPCC report scarier than the last. By 2006 Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth was outdoing them all.

Anyone daring to question the “consensus” was now being vilified as just an “anti-science denier”, no better than those crazies who deny the reality of the Nazi Holocaust.

Just then, however, the story was beginning to change. It was noted that, since the abnormally hot year of 1998, caused by a record El Nino, global temperatures had not risen at all. Those computer models had not predicted this.

Even more significant, thanks to the internet, expert science blogs were now appearing, able to show that not a single one of the claims from the “consensus” – vanishing Arctic ice, disappearing polar bears, unprecedented hurricanes, floods, droughts etc – was supported by the factual evidence.

By 2009, the “consensus” was facing considerable embarrassment, with the highly damaging Climategate emails between the little group of scientists at the heart of the IPCC, followed by the collapse in disarray of the great Copenhagen climate conference.

Then there was the spate of scandals surrounding the IPCC itself, when it was revealed some of the scariest predictions of its latest report had not been based on proper science at all, but only on more hysterical claims by climate activists.

Finally, in Paris in 2015, came what I describe as the crux of the whole story. This was yet another great global conference to decide what the world must do to avert catastrophe.

Every nation had been asked in advance to submit its energy plans for the years up to 2030. The West, led by President Obama and the EU, dutifully pledged that it would be cutting its “carbon emissions” by up to 40 per cent.

But from the rest of the world a totally different story emerged. China, by now the world’s largest CO2 emitter, was planning to build so many new coal-fired power stations that by 2030 its emissions would have doubled. India, the third largest emitter, was planning to triple them. Altogether global emissions by 2030 were set to rise by a staggering 46 per cent.

The rest of the world was just giving two fingers to the “consensus”, and planning to carry on regardless, But not one Western leader mentioned this until 2017, when President Trump gave it as his reason for pulling the US out of that meaningless “Paris Accord”.


CO2 Emissions Hit 67-Year Low In Trump's America, As Rest-Of-World Rises

We suspect you won't hear too much about this from the liberal mainstream media, or the environmental movement, or even Al Gore - but, according to the  latest energy report from The Energy Information Administration (EIA), under President Trump, per-capita carbon dioxide emissions are now the lowest they’ve been in nearly seven decades.

Even more interesting is the fact that US carbon emissions dropped while emissions from energy consumption for the rest of the world increased by 1.6%, after little or no growth for the three years from 2014 to 2016.

The U.S. emitted 15.6 metric tons of CO2 per person in 1950. After rising for decades, it’s declined in recent years to 15.8 metric tons per person in 2017, the lowest measured levels in 67 years.

And as The Daily Caller reports, in the last year, U.S. emissions fell more than 0.5% while European emissions rose 2.5% (and Chinese emissions rose 1.6% along with Hong Kong's 7.0% surge), according to BP world energy data - an ironic turn of events given Europe’s shaming of Trump for leaving the Paris climate accord


DC Council Dems Likely To Pass Most Stringent And Costly Green Energy Bill In US

Residents living within the nation’s capital should expect to see their living costs rise if D.C. Council members pass what appears to be the most aggressive climate change bill to date.

Democrat council member Mary Cheh is pushing comprehensive legislation that calls for a litany of environmental proposals.

Most notably, her bill mandates that Washington, D.C., derive 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2032, a requirement more ambitious than a new law in Hawaii — the only U.S. state to pass a 100-percent mandate.

Cheh’s bill would also fund more energy efficiency updates by slapping ratepayers with higher utility bills.

Additionally, the legislation calls for tying the vehicle excise tax to fuel efficiency as a means to encourage people to buy more fuel-efficient cars.

While many bills never see the light of day, this proposal is different: It touts support from a majority of the D.C. Council. Out of the 13 members who sit on the D.C. Council, seven have already backed Cheh’s bill.

“Through this bill, D.C. can lead the nation on climate protection legislation that can benefit D.C. families and businesses,” stated Mark Rodeffer, D.C. Chapter Chair of the Sierra Club, according to WAMU.

The Sierra Club has worked extensively to push renewable energy mandates in other state capitals.

Other environmentalists, however, were disappointed with the bill because it did not also include a fee on carbon emissions.

“Disappointed and surprised,” stated Camila Thorndike, a leader of the carbon tax campaign for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network.

“There’s been no analysis done on this package,” Thorndike said. “That was one of our points of frustration, is that we’ve provided so much modeling, and consideration of what the economic impacts, what the emission impacts, what the equity impacts were going to be of what we were putting forward.”

If passed, Washington, D.C., would have a more stringent renewable energy mandate than anywhere else in the U.S.

Hawaii became the first in the country to pass a renewable mandate in June. However, its bill was more lax, with a 100% renewable energy target by 2045 — 13 years later than the D.C. proposal.

Other states might soon be following Hawaii’s example — California is also likely to pass a 100-percent mandate, and other Democrat-controlled state capitals are considering their own targets.


The Nuclear alternative is the greenest

Globally, nuclear power, in case you were wondering, generates just over 2,000 terawatt-hours of electricity annually, about 8 times more than solar and more than double wind power.

Now let’s run some basic numbers and compare the ecological impact of renewables with that of nuclear power.

First let’s deal with the inevitable cry from people who are anti-nuclear without ever having thought much about it: “Nuclear isn’t clean, think about the mining and the waste!!!”.

Mines? Nuclear power is miserly on mines. The amount of mining required for hydro, solar or wind is many times greater. The recent ACOLA report made this point, let me repeat the relevant graph from a previous article.

As you can see, nuclear requires minimal mining.

So why do so many people seem to think mining is some kind of nuclear achilles heel? That’s an interesting question. I’ll try to answer it later. But the graph massively underestimates the mining required for renewables on two fronts; it ignores mining for batteries and it ignores mining for all the extra transmission lines needed by wind and solar. I’ve dealt with the relative ease of nuclear waste handling many times in the past … most recently here.

But mining is a minor issue compared to the massive habitat destruction associated with renewables.

Hydro-electricity, as we’ve seen produces roughly 4,000 terawatt hours per year globally from reservoirs covering 343,000 square kilometres, so, using global averages, you need to flood about 82 square kilometres per annual terawatt-hour. Let’s compare that with the land used by nuclear power. The power station itself uses very little land, but what about the mines?

The Ranger Uranium mine is about 16 square kilometres of open cut mine (including the tailings dam) producing enough uranium on average each year during the past decade to generate 148 terawatt hours of electricity per year. To get that using hydro electricity, you’d need to flood, on average, about (148×82) 12,136 square kilometres.

And what about generating 148 terawatt hours with wood? Vaclav Smil is an expert’s expert on energy. He estimates that using wood to power a 1 gigawatt electric power plant with a 70 percent capacity factor requires about 3,300 square kilometres of fast growing tree plantations. That works out at about 538 square kilometres per annual terawatt-hour. Which means that matching the output of the 16 square kilometre Ranger mine, you’d need to be harvesting 79,647 square kilometres of tree plantations; and considerably more if you were harvesting non-plantation forests.

How much uranium do you need to power a 1 gigawatt reactor for a year? With current reactors, about 200 tonnes. With those of the future? About 2 tonnes.

We can summarise the relative land use impacts of nuclear and renewables in one simple image. When the Fukushima Daiichi reactors failed in 2011 the Japanese effectively lost 4.7 gigawatts of power from their grid. Should the Japanese rebuild with new reactors on or near the site? New reactors of the same power but modern reliability could deliver about 37 terawatt-hours of electricity annually. So how much land would renewables need to generate 37 terawatt-hours annually?

The following figure tells the story. If you wanted to use solar, then you’d need to level most of the 20 km “evacuation” zone to install panels. I’ve seriously underestimated the land required by assuming Japan had Australian levels of sunshine!

If you used hydro power, you’d be flooding a semicircle with a radius of 44 kms.

And what if you did what Germany and the UK are doing, and just started burning forests? Then the semicircle would have a radius of 114 kms.

Here’s a summary map. You can imagine the size of the biggest possible uranium mine (open cut) required to supply uranium to a plant like this. It’s about a square with sides of 2km.

Remember when the environment movement was about protecting forests and rivers? Remember when they cared about maximising habitat for wildlife? Not anymore.

The obvious alternative to hydro and biomass electricity is nuclear, but globally and locally the Green movement is either anti-science or counts far too many in that group among its voting base. Either way it bases its rejection of nuclear power on science formulated in the DNA dark ages; meaning well before the most basic of information on radiation, DNA and cancer was understood.

At the dawn of the anti-nuclear movement, nobody knew anything about the daily churn of normal DNA damage and repair; they didn’t even know that repair of DNA damage was possible; let alone an essential part of staying alive.

The best scientists back in the 1950s and 60s thought DNA damage was an incredibly rare chance event which was permanent and cumulative. But those who study such things now know that both damage and repair are ongoing during every second of your life; due to the entirely normal processes of energy metabolism, simply staying alive.

Let’s suppose you wanted to raise background radiation levels to the kinds of levels that would cause the level of serious DNA damage caused by normal energy metabolism. What do I mean by serious? Breaks across both strands of DNA. Those kinds of breaks are tough to fix and may go on to cause cancer. You get about 50 of these in every cell every day.

How much would you need to increase background radiation to cause this level of double strand breaks? About 219,000 times.

When Japanese Prime Minister Nato Kan ordered the evacuation of Fukushima, he was acting contrary to the best expert opinion, based on 30 years of science, as specified in the IAEA guidelines.

The result of Nato Kan’s fear, ignorance and defiance of the best available science, was cruel and deadly. Sick, frail and elderly people died after being shunted onto busses in the middle of the night in a crazy and totally unnecessary panic spawned by decades of anti-nuclear propaganda; some younger people committed suicide. One radiation expert called the Japanese handling of the Fukushima accident “stark staring mad”; which it was. And continues to be.

No radiotherapist, geneticist, oncologist or DNA biologist trained in the past 40 years believes the assumptions that were used back in 1959 by Linus Pauling to predict cancer and birth defects from weapons test radioactive fallout… except the anti-nuclear movement which those predictions spawned.

Look at any textbook on DNA or cell biology and you’ll find a chapter or two or three on DNA repair. There are whole textbooks on DNA repair. The IAEA guidelines didn’t spring out of the imagination of the nuclear industry, but from bog-standard science. But it’s only bog-standard science if you are paying attention and not stuck in the oral tradition of Green policy which involves passing down mantras about radiation that go back to the 1950s.

Environmentalist George Monbiot called the movement out for its misleading claims about radiation back in 2011, during the Fukushima meltdowns. He began what was a devastating critique of Helen Caldicott as follows:

"Over the past fortnight I’ve made a deeply troubling discovery. The anti-nuclear movement to which I once belonged has misled the world about the impacts of radiation on human health. The claims we have made are ungrounded in science, unsupportable when challenged and wildly wrong."

When he questioned Helen Caldicott over her many failed disaster predictions, she retreated to a grand conspiracy theory about a cover up by the United Nations.

In conclusion

Starting some time before Monbiot’s devastating critique, many environmental scientists had already rejected the fear-mongering and were shifting toward nuclear as simply the cleanest, greenest, safest energy on the planet, including some of the world’s leading climate scientists. Many, like me, had gone back to the basic science and found, like Monbiot, that the anti-nuclear position was built on, at best, misinformation and obsolete science.

What do you say of people that simply refuse to read any kind of information which may challenge their radiation slogans? Technically it isn’t lying if you believe it, but deliberate ignorance is arguably worse; particularly when it threatens so many horrid consequences.

The Green movement has been incredibly effective in using misinformation to make people frightened of nuclear power. Which has been an absolute godsend for those who love building dams, pelletising forests, fracking gas and, yes, even digging coal.

The climate needs fixing and wildlife habitat needs protecting. The latter has been shrinking for decades as wildlife is replaced by more and more animals for those who eat them. The global environment movement doesn’t get that either.

The consequences of basing policy on slogans and populist ignorance rather than evidence are dire for the planet. It’s time for the global Green movement to move to rational evidenced-based policies. Many luddite supporters may abandon it in the short term, but it has to lead and transform it’s support base rather than pander to dangerous ignorant populist bullshit.

We desperately need a strong global evidence-based environmental movement, given that both politics-as-usual and the Trump/Brexit alternative are both just minor variations on poll-based populism.




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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