Thursday, February 02, 2012

More barefaced lies

A group of prominent Warmist "scientists" have got a letter published in the WSJ in reply to a skeptical article published there. See below. But the reply is just carelessly put-together Warmist boilerplate that shows no regards for the facts

An example of a careless statement: "Research shows that more than 97% of scientists actively publishing in the field agree that climate change is real and human caused."

So mankind was responsible for the ice ages too?

An example of a barefaced lie: "Observations show unequivocally that our planet is getting hotter"

Even Warmist outfits like Britain's Met Office have recently conceded that there has been no warming over the last 15 years.

And that's as near as they get to mentioning any actual science. The rest is just the usual intellectually disreputable appeal to authority. I won't bother anyone with the many occasions when the "experts" have been wrong

I could go on and point out where that 97% figure comes from etc., etc. but what's the point? These guys are obviously just crooks

Do you consult your dentist about your heart condition? In science, as in any area, reputations are based on knowledge and expertise in a field and on published, peer-reviewed work. If you need surgery, you want a highly experienced expert in the field who has done a large number of the proposed operations.

You published "No Need to Panic About Global Warming" (op-ed, Jan. 27) on climate change by the climate-science equivalent of dentists practicing cardiology. While accomplished in their own fields, most of these authors have no expertise in climate science. The few authors who have such expertise are known to have extreme views that are out of step with nearly every other climate expert. This happens in nearly every field of science. For example, there is a retrovirus expert who does not accept that HIV causes AIDS. And it is instructive to recall that a few scientists continued to state that smoking did not cause cancer, long after that was settled science.

Climate experts know that the long-term warming trend has not abated in the past decade. In fact, it was the warmest decade on record. Observations show unequivocally that our planet is getting hotter. And computer models have recently shown that during periods when there is a smaller increase of surface temperatures, warming is occurring elsewhere in the climate system, typically in the deep ocean. Such periods are a relatively common climate phenomenon, are consistent with our physical understanding of how the climate system works, and certainly do not invalidate our understanding of human-induced warming or the models used to simulate that warming.

Thus, climate experts also know what one of us, Kevin Trenberth, actually meant by the out-of-context, misrepresented quote used in the op-ed. Mr. Trenberth was lamenting the inadequacy of observing systems to fully monitor warming trends in the deep ocean and other aspects of the short-term variations that always occur, together with the long-term human-induced warming trend.

The National Academy of Sciences of the U.S. (set up by President Abraham Lincoln to advise on scientific issues), as well as major national academies of science around the world and every other authoritative body of scientists active in climate research have stated that the science is clear: The world is heating up and humans are primarily responsible. Impacts are already apparent and will increase. Reducing future impacts will require significant reductions in emissions of heat-trapping gases.

Research shows that more than 97% of scientists actively publishing in the field agree that climate change is real and human caused. It would be an act of recklessness for any political leader to disregard the weight of evidence and ignore the enormous risks that climate change clearly poses. In addition, there is very clear evidence that investing in the transition to a low-carbon economy will not only allow the world to avoid the worst risks of climate change, but could also drive decades of economic growth. Just what the doctor ordered.


Warmist email: Maybe CO2 doesn't cause malaria after all

Email 4418:

"Did you hear that our joint proposal (with Pim Martens) is one of 1,500 now assessed by the EU? Does not look hopeful. However, maybe we can do some PR and raise the profile of the proposal a bit. What I have in mind is a letter to the Lancet relating weather and historic malaria fluctuations in Europe. In an earlier letter (1994, I may have given you a copy), the geographical association was made between areas affected by ENSO and periodic epidemics. This letter ends with an open explanation for the 20-year periods in malaria in Europe (Italy and the Netherlands).

Last weeks publication in Science on a possible North Atlantic equivalent of the Nino with a period of 20 years may be of significance.

I dug up the malaria data (Italy and The Netherlands) between 1820-1930 which do show evidence of this 20 year cycle, with exacerbations in 1821, 1839, 1860, 1879, 1902, 1920. I have no idea whether there are any climate data (sea temperature or otherwise) to justify a hypothesis that both phenomena. Do you have any suggestions?"


Malaria expert Paul Reiter comments:

I wonder what sort of data he has on malaria? I hardly think it exists, at least not until well after the beginning of the 20th century.

Remember, Laverin only identified the malaria parasite somewhere in the 1880s and Ronald Ross only published his studies in 1899 (these dates from my head). So how was this data collected? I mean, how was "malaria" diagnosed?

Not by microscopy, that's for sure. Symptomatology would be impossible to define: I have had dengue, scrub typhus and malaria and, at least for the first few days they all feel the same (horrible, and I prefer malaria of the three).

On top of that, malaria in the Netherlands was probably mostly Plasmodium vivax, a parasite that persists in the liver but emerges to cause illness, particularly in people weakened for other reasons.

And I doubt that doctors did much routine diagnosis, let alone recording of "positive" cases, in the marshland areas. In fact, they were so "aguish" that most self respecting doctors kept away!

For a nice description of agueish marshes, see David Copperfield somewhere in the first few pages (when the convict forces Pip to get him some food and drink. Then figure out whether the doctors in his neighborhood were recording cases in their little notebooks.

One more thing. Pim Martens did his Masters, his PhD and his Post-doc on malaria and climate change. There is a long story to what happened when I published an article "From Shakespeare to Defoe: malaria in England in the Little Ice Age" (you can find it on the web).

Briefly, the article was censored by the Clinton government (the journal EID is a CDC publication and I was a CDC employee. They did tiny things, like eliminating the words climate change from the abstract and substituting "the weather"; despite my furious response, and support from others, the article went ahead without the poisonous words.

After that, the article was popular, so we wrote a press release. Nothing happened, and then I learned that it had not been released.

Meanwhile, Martens wrote a typical letter denouncing my sceptical stance.

I had the right to respond in the same issue of the journal but each time I submitted a letter the journal found fault in it until they were able to publish Martens' letter without mine (despite strenuous protest by top brass in CDC). My response was eventually published: two months later, when all had been forgotten.

Via email

The Coming of the New Ice Age: End of the Global Warming Era?

I just finished reading a terrifying new book about climate change. I learned this:

* Climate change is happening faster than we realize and it will have catastrophic consequences for mankind.

* There’s very little we can do to stop it at this late stage, but we might be able to save ourselves if we immediately take these necessary and drastic steps:

- Increase our reliance on alternative energy sources and stop using so much oil and other carbon-based fuels;

- Adopt energy-efficient practices in all aspects of our lives, however inconvenient;

- Impose punitive taxes on inefficient or polluting activities to discourage them;

- Funnel large sums of money from developed nations like the U.S. to Third World nations;

- In general embrace all environmental causes.

You of course recognize these as the solutions most often recommended to ameliorate the looming crisis of Global Warming. But there’s a little glitch in my narrative. Because although the book I read was indeed about climate change, it wasn’t about Global Warming at all; it was instead about “The Coming of the New Ice Age,” and it isn’t exactly “new” — it was published in 1977.

The Solution Remains the Same

As many other pundits and analysts have pointed out, in the mid-to-late 1970s we endured a massive “climate change scare” that was the exact opposite of the one we’re enduring now. Back then, the media and activists trumpeted the arrival of a new ice age, with the specter of ice sheets and glaciers covering half the northern hemisphere, and brutal winters in the remaining ice-free zones.

The fact that the media and popular culture and academia have veered from one panic-inducing disaster scenario to another one which completely contradicts the first one is funny enough in its own right. But reading The Weather Conspiracy: The Coming of the New Ice Age opened my eyes to an even more significant aspect of this serial crisis-mongering:

The “solutions” prescribed to solve both Global Warming and the looming Ice Age are exactly the same.

In both cases, proponents of the theory-du-jour say that in order to stave off disaster, we must reverse the march of civilization, stop our profligate use of carbon-based fuels, cede power and money from the First World to the Third World, and wherever possible revert to a Luddite pre-industrial lifestyle.

I realized: The solution (commit civilizational suicide) always remains the same; all that differs are the wildly divergent purported “crises” proffered up to justify the imposition of the solution.

Seen from this angle, the entire Climate Change field should be more properly reframed thus: "In order to weaken and eventually destroy the existing industrialized nations, we must devise an ecological “crisis” so severe that only voluntary economic suicide can solve it; and if this first crisis doesn’t materialize as planned, then devise another, and another, even if they flatly contradict our previous claims."

I had long suspected that this is the most accurate characterization of Climate Changeology; but reading The New Ice Age clinched it for me. The true purpose of climate change disaster-mongering is to permanently cripple the First World, and to elevate the Third World, in order to create a planet with no economic inequality. The goal remains constant; the supposed imminent catastrophes justifying it come and go as needed.

Ice Ages Are Making a Comeback

Turns out my choice of reading material (discovered recently at a rummage sale for 25¢, in case you’re curious) was fortuitous, as climate change — and ice ages — are suddenly back in the headlines this past week. And the news is not good for the crisis-mongers.

First we learned that the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide is actually helping us stave off the next inevitable ice age by a few years. Yes, you read that right: the “runaway global warming” scenario is now off the table; a new ice age is coming for sure, and whatever human warming effects there may be will only make our descent into the deep freeze a little more comfy.

Then, in a different breakthrough, leading scientists announced the discovery of a heretofore undetected type of molecule in the atmosphere which spurs cloud formation and negates global warming effects. Thanks to something called “Criegee biradicals,” the more we pollute, the more clouds form, and the cooler the planet becomes. Thus, the cumulative effect on the climate due to mankind’s activity: zilch. So for the second time in a week, the entire Anthropogenic Global Warming theory was fatally undermined.

But wait! We’re not done. Next up: A study out of Harvard proving that warming and cooling cycles are caused by orbital wobble and precession of the poles; and that the only reason the next ice age hasn’t arrived quite on schedule yet is due to our beneficial increase in carbon dioxide. Yes, that’s right: more data showing that another ice age is inevitable sooner or later.

A third nail in AGW’s coffin in less than a week? Why wasn’t this front page news?

But brace yourself — because those nails in the coffin were just the opening act. The next bit of news was the real blockbuster, a stake through AGW’s heart:

Now we learn that the world has not warmed at all for the last 15 years, and that the entire recent “global warming” hubbub was totally imaginary. Furthermore, the recent cooling is so significant that we may be headed for — you guessed it — a “mini ice age.”

Still not enough for you? The coup de grace came from our own USDA, which released a new “Plant Hardiness Zone Map” indicating that the mild global warming spike of a few years ago was actually good for plant growth and biodiversity. In other words: Even if we do experience warming, it makes the world a nicer place.

And that was just one week’s news. I wonder what next week will bring?

Now, you’d think that this devastating barrage of body blows would basically bring an end to the whole Global Warming “controversy.”

But no. Because, you see, true believers are nearly impervious to facts. In the midst of all this, the AGW activists and bullies continued their relentless quest to reshape the world’s economic landscape, as if they still had the upper hand. They even launched a witch hunt against “denier” weathermen, threatening to get any TV meteorologists fired unless they present global warming propaganda during their forecasts. Meanwhile, Al Gore continued on his decade-long tirade, declaring that “civilization is at risk” if the presidential candidates don’t cave into his demands immediately. And if you check the Web sites of any number of climate change nonprofits and organizations, they’re all still in hysterical crisis mode about the coming calamity. To them, you see, news stories like the ones we saw this week may come and go, but Global Warming is forever!

More HERE (See the original for links)

Why should my granny pay £40 a year for your solar energy?

The debacle over payments for solar energy in Britain is dragging on

We currently have an excessively generous system that pays people with solar panels 43p per kWh to generate energy - £1,000 a year, on average, according to the Energy Saving Trust.

This system, known as the feed in tariff, was designed to incentivise people to ‘go green’ and is paid for by all consumers, in the form of higher energy bills.

But if these lavish payments continue, it will add £40 a year to every household’s electricity bill by 2020. The Government had budgeted for each household to pay just £23 – an already iniquitous sum.

These green subsidies need to be curbed now to avoid spiralling bills. The Government is going to cut it to 21p per kwh from March – but will this reduction be enough?

The feed in tariff, launched in April 2010, is already proving to be a costly disaster for the Government. It desperately needs to rein in the cost or we will all end up paying the price.

At a time when there are already 5.5 million people in fuel poverty – where one tenth or more of a household’s income goes on fuel bills – it is madness to add to the burden of rising fuel bills with green initiatives.

Solar panels can cost around £10,000 to install, meaning they are usually the preserve of the well-off. Indeed, only 80,000 households have had them installed, out of 28 million households in total. Yet those with solar panels have already cost us £24 million in just three months from July to September 2011.

It seems particularly perverse, and totally contrary to the Government’s own aims to eradicate fuel poverty, that pensioners huddled under a duvet because they cannot afford to turn their heating on should be footing the bill. It is these pensioners who are paying to slash the energy bills of already-wealthy households.

In fact, the only people that have benefited from the feed in tariff are solar panel salesmen and the savvy investors looking for a good return on their cash. And sadly, research from Which? – as well as Money Mail’s postbag – reveals that many households who have bought solar panels have been mis-sold by unscrupulous salesmen who exaggerated the benefits.

The Government has mishandled the situation by failing to foresee that the cost of panels would fall as more people had them installed, thereby making the returns from feed in tariffs too generous. It has therefore been forced to cut the subsidy very quickly, leaving thousands of installers in doubt about their future.

Of course it would be great if we could secure thousands of jobs and lower our carbon emissions by incentivising people to adopt green energy. But the current feed in tariff is not the way to do it. It is expensive, regressive and unsustainable.


Global cooling strikes again

Britain to shiver in temperatures 'colder than the South Pole' as health chiefs say more than 1,500 people a week could die from killer freeze

A cold snap that has left dozens dead across Eastern Europe will reach Britain by the weekend. Temperatures are set to plunge far below freezing point making the country even colder than the South Pole. Forecasters are expecting overnight temperatures of between -8c (18f) and -10c (14f) on Friday.

The McMurdo research facility in Antarctica is currently recording -6c (21f) at night. The bitter cold has forced some countries to deploy their armed forces and set up emergency accommodation.

Health chiefs have also started warning that as a result of the freezing conditions, more than 1,500 people a week could be killed by the weather.

The Department of Health's Chief Medical Officer said that around 1,560 people, many elderly, would die due to cold weather each week between now and March in normal winter weather. That figure will rise 'substantially', however, due to extreme cold like that we are currently experiencing.

During last year's big freeze, the death rate in England and Wales shot up by 21 per cent from 9,220 a week to 11,193. Dame Sally Davies said: 'Mortality rises by 19 per cent in winter months in England, amounting to 27,000 excess deaths or 1,560 more people per week compared with the rest of the year. And very severe weather can substantially add to this death toll.

'The majority of UK deaths are among older people, especially women, and those with underlying health problems - but they are not people who would have died anyhow at that time.'

To help deal with the extreme cold, the Army has been put on standby. Around four inches of snow and ice could cover part of the country after a high pressure system hanging over Scandinavia which is pushing raw winds towards the UK.

Cold Weather Watch has now upgraded its severe weather warning to a level three, after stating that there was a 100 per cent probability of 'severe' conditions across most of England this week. With severe weather warnings already in place and chaos on the roads, the military have been put on standby should there be a level four 'major cold weather incident'.

When freezing conditions struck in 2010, members of the armed forces were called in to help clear snow from the roads and assist residents in particularly hard-hit areas. Mobilised soldiers will also help clear special locations such as doctors’ surgeries, care homes and hospitals.

According to the Met Office temperatures will drop to as low as -6C (21.2F) tomorrow and on Thursday, when daytime maximums will be no more than 3C (37.4F). Severe weather warnings for ice were also issued for last night and this morning across eastern parts of England and Scotland, and Northern Ireland, south-west England and south Wales.

Police in Devon and Cornwall have warned motorists in some parts of the region not to travel unless it is essential after snowfall over the higher areas of Exmoor and Dartmoor.

The Department of Health issued a 'Level 2' cold-weather alert running for the next two to three days, which is triggered when low temperatures give rise to significant health risks. It warned that low temperatures can especially be dangerous for the young and the elderly or those with chronic disease.


Nobel Peace Prize Jury Under Investigation

The bleeding obvious is getting some recognition at last. Could Obama and the IPCC have their awards rescinded?

Nobel Peace Prize officials were facing a formal inquiry over accusations they have drifted away from the prize's original selection criteria by choosing such winners as President Barack Obama, as the nomination deadline for the 2012 awards closed Wednesday.

The investigation comes after persistent complaints by a Norwegian peace researcher that the original purpose of the prize was to diminish the role of military power in international relations.

If the Stockholm County Administrative Board, which supervises foundations in Sweden's capital, finds that prize founder Alfred Nobel's will is not being honored, it has the authority to suspend award decisions going back three years — though that would be unlikely and unprecedented, said Mikael Wiman, a legal expert working for the county.

Obama won in 2009, Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo won in 2010, and last year the award was split between Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberian activist Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman of Yemen.

For this year's award, Russian human rights activist Svetlana Gannushkina, jailed former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko and Cuban rights activists Oswaldo Paya and Yoani Sanchez are among the candidates who have been publicly announced by those who nominated them.

The secretive prize committee doesn't discuss nominations — which have to be postmarked by Feb. 1 to be valid — but stresses that being nominated doesn't say anything about a candidate's chances.

Fredrik Heffermehl, a prominent researcher and critic of the selection process, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that "Nobel called it a prize for the champions of peace."

"And it's indisputable that he had in mind the peace movement, i.e. the active development of international law and institutions, a new global order where nations safely can drop national armaments," he said

Especially after World War II, the prize committee, which is appointed by the Norwegian Parliament, has widened the scope of the prize to include environmental, humanitarian and other efforts, he said.

For example, in 2007 the prize went to climate activist Al Gore and the U.N.'s panel on climate change, and in 2009 the committee cited Obama for "extraordinary efforts" to boost international diplomacy.

"Do you see Obama as a promoter of abolishing the military as a tool of international affairs?" Heffermehl asked rhetorically.

Nobel, a Swedish industrialist and inventor, gave only vague guidelines for the peace prize in his 1895 will, saying it should honor "work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses."

Nobel said the peace prize should be awarded by a Norwegian committee, and the other Nobel Prizes by committees in Sweden. The two Scandinavian nations were in a union at the time.

Geir Lundestad, the nonvoting secretary of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, dismissed Heffermehl's claims.

"Fighting climate change is definitely closely related to fraternity between nations. It even concerns the survival of some states," he told AP.

Still, the County Administrative Board decided to sent a letter to the Stockholm-based Nobel Foundation, which manages the prize assets, requesting a formal response to the allegations. "We have no basis to suggest that they haven't managed it properly. But we want to investigate it," Wiman said.

"The prize committee must always adjust its rules to today's society," he said. "But peace work has to be at the core — it can't deviate too much from that," Wiman said.

The peace prize and the Nobel awards in chemistry, physics, medicine, literature and economics are always handed out Dec. 10, the anniversary of Alfred Nobel's death.



For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here


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