Friday, January 25, 2019

I'm back already

My procedure went unexpectedly well and I am now out of hospital and back to normal.  So I am posting today but will be observing my usual Sabbath tomorrow

Ocasio-Cortez: Claim World Ending in 12 Years Due to Climate Change Was Not a ‘Gaffe’

On Tuesday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) declared that she did not make not a “gaffe” Monday when she said the world will end in 12 years if climate change isn’t stopped. As evidence, she cited a story and study that do not say the world will end in 12 years.

Monday, in an interview, Ocasio-Cortez said:

“And I think the part of it that is generational is that millennials and people, in Gen Z, and all these folks that come after us are looking up and we’re like, the world is gonna end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change.

“And, You’re biggest issue, your biggest issue is how are going to pay for it? — and like this is the war, this is our World War II. And I think for younger people, we’re looking at this and we’re like, how are we saying let’s take it easy when 3,000 Americans died last year, how are we saying, let’s take it easy when the Nth person died from our cruel and unjust criminal justice system?"

Tuesday, in response to a video tweet of her comment, Ocasio-Cortez expressed bewilderment that people would think she didn’t mean it, linking to an article in The Guardian citing a U.N. study:

"For some reason GOP seems to think this is a gaffe, but it’s actually a generational difference. Young people understand that climate change is an existential threat: 3,000 Americans died in Hurricane María. The UN says we’ve got 12 years left to fix it"

But, while The Guardian article says weather events will be more severe and nature will suffer if global temperatures rise 2C degrees, instead of 1.5C degrees, it does not say the world will end:

"The world’s leading climate scientists have warned there is only a dozen years for global warming to be kept to a maximum of 1.5C, beyond which even half a degree will significantly worsen the risks of drought, floods, extreme heat and poverty for hundreds of millions of people......

At 2C extremely hot days, such as those experienced in the northern hemisphere this summer, would become more severe and common, increasing heat-related deaths and causing more forest fires....

The half-degree difference could also prevent corals from being completely eradicated and ease pressure on the Arctic, according to the 1.5C study, which was launched after approval at a final plenary of all 195 countries in Incheon in South Korea that saw delegates hugging one another, with some in tears"


2018 was the year of climate truth

Ed Berry

On November 27, 2016, Keith Pickering, an associate of Peter Gleick, argued on that human CO2 caused all the increase in atmospheric CO2 since 1750. I could not believe the illogic in Keith’s argument although he believed his argument was solid. His argument was the same as the one the IPCC uses as its core argument. It fails because it ignores natural CO2.

Since then, I have written a series of posts that show the IPCC claims to support its key theory are wrong. My posts introduce a physics model that replaces the IPCC model. My latest version is my “Preprint: Contadictions to IPCC’s climate change theory.” The last version is much better than my first version. It has the benefit of hundreds of comments, suggestions, and challenges over two years.

The Preprint is the basis of my poster presentation at the American Meteorological Society annual meeting on January 8. When I return from the AMS meeting, I plan to submit my preprint to a professional journal. I have not yet decided which journal will be my first choice.

Previous authors who have supported the idea that human CO2 emissions are not the cause of most of the increase in atmospheric CO2 since 1750 are Revelle and Suess (1957), Starr (1992), Segalstad (1992, 1996, 1998), Rorsch et al. (2005), Courtney (2008), Siddons and D’Aleo (2007), Quirk (2009), Spencer (2009), MacRae (2010, 2015), Essenhigh (2009), Glassman (2010), Wilde (2012), Caryl (2013), Humlum et al. (2013), Salby (2012, 2014, 2016), Harde (2017a), and Berry (2018).

My presentation resembles those of Salby and Harde. They use the same fundamental equations that I use. I think my main contributions to the physics of the effect of human CO2 on atmospheric CO2 are (a) I have made the physics derivation very simple, (b) I introduce the concept of a balance level determined by inflow, (c) I use the 14C data to show the physics model is accurate and the IPCC model fails, (d) I show how all the IPCC arguments fail because they are junk science, and (e) I show how the human-caused changes in the level of 14C and 13C support the physics model and reject the IPCC model.

My preprint presents the “convincing alternative explanation” that IPCC and USGCRP claim does not exist. My preprint shows IPCC’s claim that “abundant published literature” shows, with “considerable certainty,” applies to the physics model and not to the IPCC model.

The last little issue I will insert into my preprint is an explanation of how IPCC’s use of “adjustment time” versus “residence time” is junk physics. The physics model shows clearly that the only reference time the physics needs is a measure of how fast the level approaches its balance level. Maybe I will call it “adjustment time” after the IPCC. Maybe I will call it “balance time.” Maybe I will call it e-Time. So far, I have called it “residence time” and that will lead to confusion because it is not the same as the IPCC “residence time.”

The IPCC idea that there is a different time that tells us how fast “molecules” exchange places is junk science. It is junk science because the so-called molecule exchange time is merely what happens when the level in the physics model gets close to its balance level.

The explanation of how CO2 flows into and out of our atmosphere is really simple. Our problem is the IPCC has muddied the waters and all alarmists support the muddy waters. The minds of the alarmists are so confused that they can no longer understand simple physics.

I am forced to address these ugly physics errors made by climate alarmists because if I don’t address them, the alarmists claim I don’t understand their arguments. The truth is I understand their arguments better than they do. And many climate alarmists who do junk physics are on our National Academy of Sciences or hold important positions in government or in science societies.

Remember what Feynman said. It does not matter who you are or what important positions you hold, if you theory makes incorrect predictions, your theory is wrong. Yes, their theory makes incorrect predictions.

I refer to the physics I use in the physics model as “the Art of Physics” because it is not complicated physics but it requires a full understanding of how to formulate a hypothesis and test it with data.

So, my message to you at the end of 2018 is human CO2 adds only about 18 ppm to the atmosphere while natural CO2 adds about 392 ppm, for a total of about 410 ppm that exists today.

There is no valid argument that the human contribution is any larger than 18 ppm. Therefore, all the political actions people are doing to “address climate change” and to “save the planet” will have zero effect on climate. These people may call me a “denier” but it is they who deny science.


Schumer’s Green Energy Subsidies Cost Much More Than Trump’s Wall

The government is shut down over border wall funding, but only a month ago Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer asked President Donald Trump to support billions in green energy subsidies.

Schumer, a New York Democrat, in early December asked Trump to support “permanent tax incentives for domestic production of clean electricity and storage, energy efficient homes and commercial buildings, electric vehicles, and modernizing the electric grid.”

“If left unchecked, the damage caused by climate change will cause untold human suffering and significant damage to the U.S. economy,” Schumer wrote to Trump on Dec. 6.

Extending tax subsidy provisions primarily benefiting wind and solar power would cost nearly $32 billion over the next four years, according to Joint Committee on Taxation estimates. Permanently extending these tax subsidies could add billions more to the tab. The committee estimates solar and wind tax subsidies will cost more than $7 billion in 2019.

Based on committee estimates, continuing solar and wind tax subsidies is nearly six times the $5.7 billion Trump is asking from Congress for a border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

The total cost of a wall to cover the nearly 2,000-mile southern border could be as high as $25 billion, according to the White House, though other estimates have put the cost of a border wall as high as $60 billion based on the projected per-mile cost.

The battle over border wall funding forced Congress to sideline its year-end debate over “tax extenders,” which includes 11 green energy-related tax benefits that would cost roughly $53 billion over 10 years if they were made permanent, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation. Extending these tax credits just one year is estimated to cost roughly $5 billion.

These energy tax subsidies expired at the end of 2017, the costliest of which are tax incentives for biodiesel, alternative fuels, and residential energy efficiency. If made permanent, those programs would cost more than nine times what Trump asked from Congress in border wall funding.

The two costliest green subsidies, the production tax credit and investment tax credit, primarily benefit wind turbines and solar panels, respectively. Many Republicans and conservative groups have called for eliminating green tax subsidies.

Both the production tax credit and investment tax credit are set to expire at the end of 2021. However, given the White House’s opposition to some green energy tax subsidies, some conservatives suggest ending those and put the funds toward a border wall.

“This only makes sense, and with the additional funds we could paint it green,” Dan Kish, a senior distinguished fellow at the free-market Institute for Energy Research, told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “It’s a win-win.”

But could a deal like this ever be cut? Dan Whitten, vice president of public affairs for the Solar Energy Industries Association, doesn’t think so.

“Given its strong bipartisan support, this seems like a nonstarter,” Whitten told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

“As for the notion of terminating the existing ITC (investment tax credit), that is something we would strenuously oppose,” Whitten said. “It is one of the most successful energy incentives to date, creating hundreds of thousands of jobs and tens of billions of dollars in economic activity.”

The Solar Energy Industries Association has not asked Congress to extend the investment tax credit, which is set to sunset at the end of 2021. However, there is a permanent 10 percent investment tax credit for solar and geothermal installations.

The American Wind Energy Association did not respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

Sixteen days after Schumer sent his letter, Trump refused to sign legislation to keep the federal government open without $5.7 billion in border wall funding. Congressional Democrats refused and the government shutdown began.


The Growing Absurdities Of The German Energiewende

Comment from Switzerland

In Bavaria, two gas-fired power plants of the latest generation stand around as investment disasters. Nevertheless, one of the operators wants to build a third one at the same location. This can only be understood against the background of the misguided German Energiewende.

At the beginning of the year, the number of successful reports on renewable energies in Germany is increasing: The Agora Energiewende think tank writes that their 35% share of electricity production is the same as that of electricity from coal-fired power plants for the first time. By 2030, the German government even wants to increase the share of renewables to 65%.

However, people often forget to mention that the availability of electricity varies greatly, depending on whether it is produced with sun and wind or from conventional sources. The large-scale use of storage facilities for renewables is also a long way off. There is therefore no getting around keeping a conventional power plant at hand at all times, which can take over in times of “dark lulls” such as when there is little sun and wind.

Expensive interventions in the power grid

In the Bavarian town of Irsching near Ingolstadt, electricity producer Uniper and its partners have commissioned two state-of-the-art gas-fired power plants as of 2010. Nevertheless, the math did not add up: The glut of subsidised eco-electricity put pressure on stock market prices. A higher price for CO2 emissions had been expected, which would have given gas-fired power plants advantages over coal-fired power plants.

The two units cannot now be operated profitably. To do this, the CO2 price in emissions trading would have to rise to over €40 per tonne, while it is currently half as high. However, the German Electricity Grid Agency demands that the two blocks be kept in reserve. Although the two gas-fired power plants are investment ruins, Uniper is now building a third gas-fired power plant at the same location. Has the company learned nothing?

No, this time it might even be a good deal. Uniper was awarded the construction contract in an auction by the electricity network operator Tennet. The power plant with a capacity of 300 megawatts is to produce “not for the market”, but only in emergency situations to stabilize the grid. And for this emergency service, Uniper receives a remuneration that makes the construction worthwhile.

Tennet can ultimately pass the costs on to consumers. The power plant will be available from October 2022. This is no coincidence: the last nuclear power plants in Germany will be shut down that year, but security of supply must continue to be guaranteed. Now, however, strongly fluctuating wind power is generated especially in the north. In order to transport it to the south, where the industrial heart of Germany beats, new power lines are needed. But the Minister of Economic Affairs, Peter Altmaier, admitted a few months ago that the construction of this line was “catastrophically behind schedule”. Of the planned 7670 kilometers of power lines, only 950 kilometers are in operation.

Consumers pay twice

The number of interventions in the grid has increased due to the volatile feed-in of renewable energies and the lack of transport possibilities. This also includes regulating wind turbines when the grid is overloaded. In 2017, these measures already cost €1.4 billion. Consumers have to pay for these expenses via their electricity bills. These grid charges are now higher than the levies for green electricity. German consumers therefore pay one of the highest electricity prices in Europe.

In addition to Uniper, the Nürnberg utility N-Ergie also has a 25.2% stake in one of the two existing gas power plants in Irsching. Its boss, Josef Hasler, is now sharply critical of the implementation of the energy turnaround. He points out that all three power plants ultimately served grid stability. That is true even for the last one. However, the two existing units are only connected to the grid a few hours a year. This could lead to the absurd situation that the new power plant will never be used, he says. However, while the new unit will now be fully compensated, the two existing units will only be remunerated for the few hours during which they are in operation. The same task is thus compensated quite differently in Hasler’s judgment. The annual loss for the block, in which N-Ergie is involved, amounts to a two-digit million amount.

Hasler complains that consumers, who are burdened with rising grid charges, are ultimately the victims of the misguided energy policy. In Irsching, three large gas-fired power plants, which are rarely in use, will be in operation in a few years’ time. The consumers thus paid twice, namely for the massive expansion of the electricity transmission grids and the construction of new power plants, the N-Ergie boss points out. This will certainly not contribute to the acceptance of the energy system transformation.


Fact-free politics

IN this era when there has been more information available to more people than at any time in the past, it is also true that there has been more misinformation from more different sources than ever. We are not talking about differences of opinion or inadequate verification, but about statements and catchwords in utter defiance of facts.

Among the most popular current catchwords are “climate change deniers.” Stop and think. Have you ever — even once in your entire life — seen, heard or read even one human being who denied that climates change?

It is hard even to imagine how any minimally knowledgeable person could deny that climates change, when there are fossils of marine creatures in the Sahara Desert. Obviously there has been quite a climate change there.

The next time someone talks about “climate change deniers,” ask them to name one — and tell you just where specifically you can find their words, declaring that climates do not change. You can bet the rent money that they cannot tell you.

Why all this talk about these mythical creatures called “climate change deniers”? Because there are some meteorologists and other scientists who refuse to join the stampede toward drastic economic changes to prevent what others say will be catastrophic levels of “global warming.”

There are scientists on both sides of that issue. Presumably the issue could be debated on the basis of evidence and analysis. But this has become a political crusade, and political issues tend to be settled by political means, of which demonizing the opposition with catchwords is one.

It is much the same story on economic issues. Any proposal to reduce income tax rates is sure to bring out claims that these are “tax cuts for the rich,” based on the “trickle-down theory” that reducing the taxes collected from the rich will cause some of their wealth to “trickle down” to people with lower incomes.

Here, yet again, all you need to do is think back over your own life, and ask yourself if you have ever — even once in your entire life — seen, heard or read a single human being who advocated this “trickle-down theory.”

Certainly none of the innumerable fellow economists I have encountered in my 88 years ever advocated any such theory. Nor am I aware of anyone else, in any other walk of life, who has done so.

Yet there are ringing denunciations of the “trickle-down theory” in books, articles, and in politics and the media. That theory has been denounced as far away as India.

The next time someone talks about the “trickle-down” theory, ask them to tell you where specifically you can find the writings, videos or any other evidence of someone advocating that theory. You may get some very clever and creative evasions of your question, but no actual answer.

One of the best-selling history textbooks did name Secretary of the Treasury Andrew Mellon as having said in the 1920s that letting the rich pay less taxes would allow their wealth to “trickle down” to others. It was one of the very rare examples that actually named a name.

Unfortunately, what this widely used history textbook attributed to Andrew Mellon was the direct opposite of what he actually said. In Mellon’s own book, “Taxation,” he said that wealthy people were not paying enough tax revenue to the government, because they put their money into tax-exempt securities.

Mellon called it “incredible” that tax laws allowed someone making a million dollars a year to pay not a cent in taxes, and an “almost grotesque” consequence that people of more modest incomes had to make up the shortfall.

He understood, however, that higher tax rates did not automatically mean higher tax revenues. So when the tax law changes that he advocated cut tax rates, the income tax revenues actually hit a record high at that time. Moreover, the rich paid more tax revenue and a much higher percentage of all income tax revenues than before.

Issues in both economics and science can get complicated. But when one side of those issues has to resort to demonstrably false catchwords, that should give us a clue.



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

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



Malcontent said...

Glad to hear that your procedure went well. Keep up the good postings and commentary

Anonymous said...

"I'm back already"

Great news, John! WElcome back.

Tim Gilley said...

Delighted at your quick recovery and return to the blog. You are highly respected by your readers.