Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Joe Biden Promised to Destroy the Oil Industry Last Night

In an effort to gain support on the far-left flank of the Democratic Party Sunday night, former Vice President Joe Biden vowed to stop oil drilling in the United States and said he would implement a ban on new fracking.

"No more drilling on federal lands. No more drilling, including offshore. No ability for the oil industry to continue to drill, period. Ends," Biden said. "No new fracking."

This translates to massive job losses for millions of Americans, not to mention how Biden's policy would create an unaffordable increase in energy prices.

Industry supports 9.8 million jobs or 5.6 percent of total U.S. employment, according to PwC. In 2012, the unconventional oil and natural gas value chain and energy-related chemicals activity together supported more than 2.1 million jobs, according to IHS – a number that’s projected to reach 3.9 million by 2025.

Rapid growth in oil production from shale using advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling is creating high-paying jobs and boosting personal incomes in states like North Dakota and Texas.

The U.S. manufacturing sector is being revitalized because of the shale energy revolution, with manufacturers gaining an edge for products made domestically from the use of affordable natural gas and associated feedstocks. The development of America’s vast shale natural gas reserves could add more than 1 million U.S. manufacturing jobs by 2025, according to PwC. A Reuters analysis indicated that low-cost natural gas made a $2.08 trillion contribution to the U.S. manufacturing sector in 2013 alone.

Politically, it's really stupid. Biden needs to win blue collar gas workers in Pennsylvania to beat President Donald Trump.


Will global warming erode our beaches away?

Life is a beach – until half of them disappear by the turn of the century in 2100, we’ve just been told, thanks to global warming.

According to research by “climate experts” published earlier this month by the journal Nature Climate Change, global warming-caused sea level rise “could result in the near extinction of almost half of the world’s sandy beaches by the end of the century.”

Then again, maybe not.

Notice the sensational claims mixed with weasel words by these researchers. Beaches “could” be “near extinction” eighty years from now when everyone older than a newborn will be an octogenarian or dead. The study’s lead author Michalis Vousdoukas claimed that half the world’s beaches will erode “more than 100 meters” and that it is “likely that they will be lost.” More weasel words, as in “likely.”

The study outlined different temperature warming scenarios, including an increase of 2.4 degrees Celsius and higher that would contribute to wiping out half the beaches. Mr. Vousdoukas further claimed that a moderate reduction in greenhouse gas emissions could prevent 40 percent of the projected diminution of shoreline.

There you have it. Cut carbon emissions presumably by killing fossil fuels, and our future lineage can still enjoy the sand and surf!

Count this as one more study in the spirit of Paul Erlich’s 1968 book The Population Bomb, which predicted mass global starvation within a decade. The difference in this case is the prediction for losing half the world’s beaches is made to occur eight decades from now when the authors will be dead, and thus spared the embarrassment when it doesn’t come to fruition.

The truth is, the authors of this study and so many others with sensationalist, un-provable claims for the next century are merely throwing spaghetti against the wall to see what sticks, if anything. Perhaps beach erosion may be 50 meters by 2100. Does Mr. Vousdoukas and his co-authors really know? They don’t.

What if the world climate instead cools by 2100? Can we still go to the beach?

It is astounding to me how many media outlets picked up this study and parroted its findings, uncritically.

As CFACT has reported, changes to the world climate are ongoing and influenced by multiple factors far beyond carbon emissions from fossil fuel use. Sunspot activity–which indicates global cooling may be in the near future–along with water vapor, ocean currents and so much else, affect the climate – today. Eighty years from now, these multiple factors also will affect the climate, with no way to pin down future temperatures.

Since the end of the Little Ice Age in the late 1800’s, the planet has been warming moderately, and we still have lots of beaches, including on all those vacation islands with ads on television that show gorgeous humanoids in paradise. Yet, we are suppose to believe that in less time in the future, half the beaches will be gone?

Global warming or not, beaches do not remain stagnant, as coastal erosion and replenishment is a natural process. Coastal development such as building houses and roads too close to the water has more to do with erosion than climate change.

Restricting future development further from the shoreline will do more to allow beaches to naturally maintain themselves, along with backfilling lost sand, than reducing carbon emissions. These and other approaches over time are far better and cheaper solutions than destroying the fossil fuel industry on the theory that the climate will stop changing.

According to a study last year by the University of Delaware, federal homeowner buy-out efforts have resulted in more than 40,000 homes purchased to allow flood plain restoration and open space in more than 1,100 counties spread across every state except Hawaii.

Studies of this kind about “extinction” of beaches I suspect are designed to affect people emotionally to fulfill a political agenda. After all, who doesn’t enjoy the beach? No one wants to them to disappear. The message is: get on board the global warming train and demand the (unrealistic) replacement of fossil fuels from our lives and economy so we can enjoy the beach!

Beware of alarmism. If we are good stewards of the Earth, we need not wreck our standard of living to enable our descendants to enjoy the beaches, even as the temperature changes naturally.


Will humanity survive self-hatred?

Most Americans today are focused on how to survive the CoVid 19 coronavirus – the latest in a long line of promised plagues that when the dust had settled took far fewer lives than the panics that accompanied them.

Politicians as prominent as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tell us that the future of civilization is at stake from this latest virus, whose kill rate to date is maybe 2 percent of those infected – except for the very elderly and infirm, with many also hit by other influenza and pneumonia viruses.

It is highly unlikely that CoVid 19 will come anywhere near infecting 300 million and killing half a million Europeans, Americans, or even Chinese – as malaria does every year in sub-Saharan Africa. CoVid 19 is not likely to be as deadly as its sister viruses, SARS and MERS, which took 10 and 35 percent, respectively of those infected.

Yet, to those with pure green hearts, these viruses are pikers. As noted by Matt Cardin, novelist William Burroughs, in his 1981 novel Cities of the Red Night proclaimed that, “Self-identity is ultimately a symptom of parasitic invasion.… Strands of alien DNA unfurl themselves in our brains, just as tapeworms unfurl themselves in our guts. Not just language, but the whole quality of human consciousness … is basically a virus mechanism.”

Fast forward to 1999, and the world premiere of The Matrix. As Cardin reminds us, the Wachowskis “presented a dazzling vision of a dystopian future in which intelligent machines have enslaved the human race to use them as an energy source.”

In the movie, the sentient computer program known as Agent Smith makes the bold statement: “Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with its surrounding environment, but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply until every natural resource is consumed, and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You are a plague. And we are the cure.”

Today’s Far Left is heavily influenced by Deep Green ecology – the foundation of the fear of climate change. In 2007, Paul Watson, founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, claimed that, “Humans are presently acting upon [the earth’s ecosystem] in the same manner as an invasive virus with the result that we are eroding the ecological immune system. A virus kills its host and that is exactly what we are doing with our planet’s life support system.”

BUT NOT TO WORRY! There is a solution. A risky one, but with great promise!!

We are, it is said, on the very cusp of a self-learning artificial intelligence – like Piper (and others) in the recent ABC TV series Emergence. And many in our society literally worship technology. As billionaire Michael Bloomberg said in 2016, “The information economy is built around replacing people with technology.”

[Maybe the decarbonization movement really IS about preparing our AI creations for the day when all carbon-based life forms will be designated for extinction? Why else would they call it a “carbon” tax, rather than a carbon dioxide tax?]

On the other hand, humans have long shown a propensity for self-improvement by artificial means, whether it be plastic surgery or even transgenderism. And the quest for immortality is as old as civilization. But now Russian billionaire Dmitry Itskov has created an organization – the 2045 Initiative – in hopes of making immortality a reality.

Itskov recruited several top Russian scientists in the fields of robotics, artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, neural-computer interface, and artificial organ engineering to join his project. The idea is that by 2035, it should be possible to control a robot with an artificial brain modeled after the human brain. This brain will be imprinted with an existing human personality to create perfectly cloned intelligences – a human brain with a body that can be updated infinitely.

Meanwhile, back in the USA, transhumanist proselytizer Zoltan Istvan [Gyurko] ran for President in 2016 on the Transhumanist Party ticket. Istvan promised to end death as he drove across the country in the “immortality bus” designed to look like a coffin. Transhumanism holds to the faith that technology is a means of achieving “the long-held human dream of immortality and the more modern yearning for radical individual bodily self-transformation.”

As Wesley Smith tells us, “Transhumanism predicts that these dreams will come true when a crescendo of unstoppable technological advances — known as ‘the Singularity’ — unleashes the power to transform humanity into a “post-human species.” But what if the artificial intelligence gets smart enough to determine that it does not need the brain of a flawed human?

In Mark de Castrique’s 2016 thriller novel The Singularity Race, billionaire Robert Brentwood builds an artificial intelligence laboratory in North Carolina. Brentwood predicts a potential bad outcome for humans should AI become effectively a new, silicon-based species (replacing carbon-based humans) without a human-shaped moral code. [Remember HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey?]

Brentwood posits, “If Apollo (the AI) determines on his own that the greatest threat to the Earth is climate change brought about by greenhouse gases and a destroyed ozone layer, and the unbiased conclusion is that the greatest accelerant of these phenomena is humankind, what’s to stop this super intelligent computer from wiping our species off the face of the Earth?”

To which scientist Lisa Li responds – I believe if we create an artificial intelligence with imagination and wisdom, we can’t avoid the development that logically follows – artificial consciousness. And like any conscious entity, he’ll have a desire for self-preservation.”

So there you have it. Our doom and gloom friends from the Deep Ecology movement – who still want to ban natural gas, nuclear energy, internal combustion engines, air travel, high-rise buildings, eating meat, plastics, and a much longer laundry list of “evils” created by that human-shaped virus known as ingenuity — may indeed one day “save” the Earth from humanity, if only by making the planet so unlivable (for creative humans, at least) that we just give up.

But never fear – we may be creating an entirely new species – silicon-based life forms – that will find ways to survive and even thrive in a carbon-free world. On the other hand, while these new sentient beings will be safe from biological viruses, their less developed forebears are already quite susceptible to OTHER viruses.


Australian PM told to act on greenie ‘lawfare’

The shire of Broome is calling on Scott Morrison to crack down on activist charities that are “destroying existing industries” and blocking job-creating resources projects in Western Australia.

The council, which is located in the Kimberley region wants regulatory changes to give ­“accountability requirements” to charities that are using regulatory measures to delay or deter new projects.

Under the changes proposed by the council, activist charities that engage in misleading and deceptive conduct should either lose their charitable status or face being fined.

Charities would also be required to declare their expenditure on political activities; the remuneration of management; their top 20 donors; all government grants received; and any ­financial support given to other organisations involved in political advocacy.

The council passed the ­motion in late February, calling on its chief executive, Sam Mastrolembo, to make the demands in a letter to the Prime Minister.

“They are able to engage in unethical conduct because there is very little regulation holding them to account,” the council wrote in its draft letter.

“Should a public company or pastoralist act in the same manner and spread false information to the public, there would be considerable financial penalties and reputational damage. Not so for these charitable groups.”

The Australian revealed last week that “green” activists had used environmental laws to delay about $65bn worth of projects since 2000. The legal proceedings from conservation and green groups have forced companies into court for more than 10,000 days in the past 20 years.

In the past four years, the activist groups have used the federal environmental protection act to cause delays to seven major projects in regional areas, including the $16.5bn Adani coalmine in Queensland.

Resources Minister Keith Pitt told The Australian he would support any move to stop green groups using excessive legal claims to delay projects.

“People in regional areas are sick of seeing significant, job-­creating resources projects delayed by court action launched by activists with no connection to their area,” he said.

The development of the $31bn Browse Basin has faced delays for more than seven years after the Supreme Court of WA upheld legal protests from the Wilderness ­Society.

The development of the massive gas field is unlikely to start until 2021.

The council’s draft letter says activist charities are causing unemployment by “destroying legitimate industries that are the lifeblood of regional towns”.

“These activists are causing tax collection to decrease by destroying existing industries and preventing new tax-paying industries from being created,” the draft letter says.

“These groups are funded by faceless, unaccountable billionaires and millionaires, many of whom don’t live in Australia.

“Those whose livelihoods the activists destroy or disadvantage have no means to see who pulls the strings in the background.”


Australia: Turn down tap on "environmental" water to save agriculture, say experts

Governments should slow down taking "environmental" water from the Murray-Darling Basin to save taxpayers $4bn and avoid further disrupting local communities, the head of a government-appointed panel says.

Farmer and agribusiness consultant Robbie Sefton said the inter-government agreement to take another massive slice of water from users to feed into the environment was beyond the ­capacity of local communities to absorb.

“If we slow it down, then communities can recover,” she said.

“Governments should match the pace of all further water recovery to the capacity of the system and basin communities to absorb and adjust to change.”

Ms Sefton said some scenarios modelled by experts appointed by the panel suggested a reduction in irrigation water usage could see dairy production in the southern basin decrease by 55 per cent, and rice fall by 32 per cent.

Her remarks came as Water Minister Keith Pitt released the panel’s draft report on social and economic conditions in the basin.

Ms Sefton’s views present a challenge to the government, which has until now said it wanted to proceed with all aspects of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan in time for completion in 2024.

The report says plans to take more water from users in the Murray-Darling Basin to restore to the environment should proceed only if local communities supported them. It also calls for more funds for research and development, warning that productivity in some sectors of agriculture was declining.

Last year, then water minister David Littleproud commissioned the panel following widespread anger over the adverse impact of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.

Under the plan, the federal government has bought back water entitlements from irrigation farmers to restore to the environment, leading to a fall in agricultural production and causing economic decline in some towns.

An estimated 25 to 30 per cent has been taken from the available pool of water for irrigation.

The draft report, which followed extensive local meetings in the basin, found that current conditions were extremely challenging for many irrigation industries and dependent communities.

The report casts doubt on whether going forward with the plan would achieve its objectives.

“The panel considers there is insufficient evidence that future water recovery is being implemented to deliver water in the ­places needed to effectively achieve enhanced environmental outcomes, working river systems, and improved social wellbeing in the basin.

“There is growing recognition that the overall target for water recovery of 2750GL per year plus 450GL per year of efficiency measures cannot be achieved by 2024 without significant cost to the Australian taxpayer, and significant basin community dis­ruption,” the report says.

With the price of irrigation water very high, recovering the additional 250GL would cost more than $4bn, it says.

“We are certainly saying slow down the 450GL,” Ms Sefton said.

The report says there have been different social and economic outcomes across different parts of the basin. “Many smaller communities have less economic diversity and higher reliance on agriculture, and are more susceptible to shocks (such as drought) as a result,” it says.

Mr Pitt said while the government “remains committed to the Murray-Darling Basin Plan”, it would be “constantly monitored throughout its implementation”.

After seeking further input from interested parties, the panel will deliver its final report to Mr Pitt on April 30.



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