Tuesday, August 25, 2020

New World Temperature Record Set - Is Climate Change To Blame?

The question mark above is well warranted.  By "Climate change" they presumably mean anthropogenic global warming.  And the anthropogenic global warming theory is that CO2 in the atmosphere causes warming.  And CO2 levels have been rising steadily.

According to Cape Grim CO2 levels rose from  401ppm at the end of 2016 against the latest reading of 410ppm.  So obviously it will be hotter now than in 2016.  Problem:  It's not.  As the article below states,  reality is the other way around: 2016 was our hottest year.

So we once again see that the global warming theory fails a test against reality.  As a scientific theory it must be rejected.  As a political theory, of course, it will sail on for many years yet/i>

It’s possible that this week, we set a new record for the hottest recorded temperature on Earth. The Furnace Creek Visitor Center in Death Valley recorded a temperature of 54.4C (129.9F) this Sunday, August 16, 2020. The temperature was high enough to cause the unofficial temperature display to start behaving strangely. If you haven’t been concerned about climate change before, perhaps it’s time to sit up and take note - this is just the latest in records that are being set since the year 2000.

The previous high temperature was 53.3C in Kuwait in 2011. In 1913, there was a potential high temperature in Furnace Creek of 56.7C, but this reading is of questionable accuracy.

Currently, scientists are verifying the new temperature claim.

This is the latest in a disturbing trend. The record hottest year on Earth was 2016, followed by 2019, 2015, 2017, 2018, 2014, 2010, 2013 and 2005 (tied), and 1998. Almost all of those years have been within the last two decades. And scientists predict that we will continue to set records.

And 2020 is not looking good either. Seven percent of the Earth set new records for June temperatures this year, such as Asia, Scandinavia, Western Europe, Mexico, and large swaths of the ocean. The Arctic had its first 100F day when a town in Siberia named Verkhoyansk reached 38C (100.4F). Droughts and dryness have also been affecting the production of soybeans, sorghum, and cotton in the middle United States.

Normally, hot years are linked to El Niño events or active solar cycles, but 2020 has had neither. In fact, it’s been the weakest 11-year solar cycle in the last 100 years.

The Earth Has Warmed In The Past, What’s Different About Now?

By using tree rings, glaciers, sediments in the oceans, rocks, and even coral reefs, we can gain an understanding of how hot the Earth was in the past, and how the temperature changed. For example, as we moved out of the last Ice Age, the temperature rose 4 to 7 degrees C.

But - now here’s the important part - this warming occurred over 5,000 years. We’ve seen the temperature of the Earth rise 0.7 degrees C in the past century. That’s 10 times faster than the average rate.


New paper: Fossil fuel dependent technologies help feed the world and save global biodiversity

Indur Goklany

I have a paper, Reduction in global habitat loss from fossil‐fuel‐dependent increases in cropland productivity, that has been accepted for publication in Conservation Biology, a peer-reviewed  journal of the Society for Conservation Biology.

It focuses on habitat lost to agricultural uses, which is generally considered to be the major cause for global biodiversity loss. Currently, 37% of global land area is in agricultural uses.

It shows that:

At least 62.5% of global food production is due to increased agricultural productivity from fossil-fuel-dependent technologies.

Absent fossil fuels, at least another 20% of global land area would have to be converted to cropland to maintain global food production, further threatening global biodiversity.

This exceeds the total amount of land currently set aside globally for conservation in one form or another (15%), which some have called the world's greatest conservation success story (or words to that effect).

Global food supplies would also drop, at least temporarily, to levels about a quarter below those experienced by the Chinese people during their last Great Famine of 1959-61. Food prices would skyrocket to balance supply and demand.

It also implies that estimates of the Social Cost of Carbon that do not, among other things, the consequences of CO2 related emissions on global hunger and habitat loss, are not fit for purpose.

Email from Indur Goklany: igoklany@outlook.com

WHO warns coronavirus vaccine alone won't end pandemic: Future must be greener

The morphing of the public health bureaucracy and the climate establishment is at hand

World leaders and the public must learn to manage the virus and make permanent adjustments to their daily lives to bring the virus down to low levels, the WHO said.

Throughout history, outbreaks and pandemics have changed economies and societies, the agency said.

The World Health Organization said Friday that a vaccine will be a "vital tool" in the global fight against the coronavirus, but it won't end the Covid-19 pandemic on its own and there's no guarantee scientists will find one.

World leaders and the public must learn to manage the virus and make permanent adjustments to their daily lives to bring the virus down to low levels, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a news conference from the agency's Geneva headquarters. "At the same time, we will not, we cannot go back to the way things were."

Throughout history, outbreaks and pandemics have changed economies and societies, he said.

"In particular, the Covid-19 pandemic has given new impetus to the need to accelerate efforts to respond to climate change," he said. "The Covid-19 pandemic has given us a glimpse of our world as it could be: cleaner skies and rivers."

The virus has infected more than 22.7 million people worldwide and killed at least 794,100 in more than seven months, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. There are at least 30 potential vaccines currently in clinical trials, according to the WHO, but there is no guarantee they will be safe and effective, he said.


UK infrastructure investor suffers big losses from two Australia solar farms

That "free" electricity from the sun turns out to be not so free after all

UK infrastructure investor John Laing has revealed yet more big losses from its Australia renewable energy portfolio, this time focused on the two big Australian solar farm investments hit by connection delays, equipment problems and grid congestion issues.

The two solar projects affected are the wholly-owned 175MW Finley solar farm, located in south west NSW in a newly congested part of the grid, and its 90 per cent owned 200MW Sunraysia solar project, which is in the same region but which has also run into technical difficulties and has so far failed to obtain registration from the Australian Energy Market Operator nearly a year after mechanical construction was complete.

In its interim results released late last week, John Laing reported losses of £43 million ($A79 million) from the two solar assets. This follows its write downs of £66 million a year earlier due to changes in marginal loss factors in Australia – a result that led to a decision to cease new investment in wind and solar assets and to try and sell the Australian portfolio.

It adds to the growing number of write-downs and losses on new solar projects from a range of affected parties – contractors, developers and asset owners – due to issues ranging from cost-overruns, delays, commissioning problems, grid congestion and system strength issues. More are now being affected by falling wholesale prices, such as New Energy Solar’s Manildra solar farm, among others.

In the latest period, some £11 million came from transmission issues, presumably Finley, which is among a number of solar assets warned about “material constraints” in the network west of Wagga Wagga due to congestion issues. That suggests that many of the solar assets in the area may also face write downs by their owners.

“This primarily relates to a loss on one of our solar projects as a result of transmission-related issues,” the company says. “Due to the instability of the power system in south-western New South Wales, AEMO imposed a constraint on this network. This limits the flow of power on the main transmission line.”

The losses from Sunraysia make up the rest of the £43 million cited from the two solar farms. “Sunraysia, which is still in construction,  experienced technical issues,” it says, adding later that the technical issues are related to “transformers”.

“There have also been ongoing delays with the Australian Energy Market Operator registration process which is holding up the project’s connection to the grid,” it adds.

John Laing says a “remediation plan” for Sunraysia is in place. But the solar farm has also become the centre of a legal dispute between John Laing and co-investor Maoneng, and the main contractor Decmil.

In a presentation to analysts, recently appointed CEO Ben Loome said some of the issues that have affected the business are the result of “not fully assessing risk return dynamics. A lot of this activity came at a time when investment in renewable energy was becoming more competitive and commoditised.”

John Laing earlier this year put its Australian renewable energy portfolio up for sale after taking the decision not to invest in any new assets. It pulled the two solar assets from the sales process, citing the uncertainty over connections and grid congestion.

Loome said the company will not be hurried to make a sale. “We have got to make sure each of projects is properly prepared for sale – so we can maximise value,” he said in the presentation. “We will be pursing realisations over the next 1 or 2 years. We are not under pressure to sell any assets ”

But John Laing says the sale process is being affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and changes to Australia Foreign Investment Review Board rules, and the 49.8 per cent owned Granville wind farm being built in Tasmania is being delayed by Covid-19 issues and “weather conditions.” Completion of construction is targeted for the beginning of 2021.

Its other assets in Australia include the Cherry Tree wind farm in Victoria, the Kiata wind farm in Victoria (72.3 per cent), and minority stakes in each of the three big Hornsdale wind farm assets in South Australia.

The John Laing accounts also reveal another £50 million in losses from its renewable energy portfolio because of lower prices, although it does not specify the extent of these losses across the individual regions of its US, European or Australian portfolio.

John Laing has contracts in numerous civil works projects across a number of countries, including a hospital in Adelaide and light rail in Sydney, but the problems with its renewables portfolio drove its result to a £95 million loss in the first half.



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.  

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