Thursday, January 01, 2015

Green Prospers Because None Dare Call it Treason!

By Rich Kozlovich

The title of this article is based on a quote from Sir John Harington who said “Treason doth never prosper, what's the reason[?] "For if it prosper, none dare call it treason”.  It seems to me that Harington was explaining how important it is that treason must be defined and called to account for what it is in order to prevent the success of traitors.  Because if their treason should proper - none can dare risk calling it treason any longer – that opportunity would have passed because the traitors are now in charge!

But what if everyone stood up and called treason for what it is?  Would it prosper in the end?  Possibly, but the first stepping stone to clarity is the ability to properly define what constitutes treason.  Can we recognize treason when we see it?  And that’s the key isn’t it?  Defining treason – for without definition there’s no clarity, and there’s so much of it these days it’s hard to separate treason from opinion.  Let’s explore this!

Normally we associate treason with “the betrayal of allegiance or acts of disloyalty or treachery toward one's own country or its government” in an “attempt to overthrow the government”, especially by "committing hostile acts against it or aiding its enemies in committing such acts”.   It also involves efforts to “impair the well-being of a state to which one owes allegiance”.   But the very foundation of what constitutes treason reaches far beyond that.  It’s a betrayal of  trust, confidence or faith.   We’ll expand on that later.

Treason is such an ugly word.  It imputes so many ugly negative qualities to a person.  It means being a collaborator with the enemies of one’s society, embodying qualities such as cowardice, disloyalty, subversion, dishonesty, double crossing, being a sellout, knavery, a lack of fidelity and moral character.  Traitors work against the common good of the people whose habits, language and garb and common culture they share, while slyly working what is harmful to their associates, friends and even family.

Treason is an ugly word - but it fits for what it means to be green.

History is the fountain head of truth, and truth once spoken remains truth forever, we just have to keep making ourselves acquainted with it – regularly – or we forget what it is and can be easily swayed by every new philosophical flavor of the day!   I’ve used this quote often in the past attrituted to Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 -43 BCE) , which is unendingly profound, even after 2000 years.

“A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear.”

Can any crime be feared more?

People typically need some sort of intellectual justification to support and explain their actions, and yet often times the positions they take has nothing to do with intellectual reasoning.  Very often they do what they do because it makes them feel good, or enhances their position in society.  But what are the underlying forces the makes so many – from all over the world - want to embrace "going green”?

This is a multi-faceted problem requiring a multi-faceted answer.  There is a growing alliance between the media, the wealthy left,  academia, environmental activists, activist bureaucrats, unscrupulous politicians and people who believe they can “do business” going green.  Viv Forbes stated years ago that, "The public has been misled by an unholy alliance of environmental scaremongers, funds-seeking academics, sensation-seeking media, vote-seeking politicians and profit-seeking vested interests."

This cabal has become a hegemony that’s linked to instruments of state power all over the world, undermining the health and welfare of human societies with the theme “they’re saving the planet” and they're doing what they do because "it's for the children".  When we hear those kinds of emotional appeals we had better start looking deeper into the subject because it probably means the intellectual foundations for their views are shallow.

Unfortunately for society this anti-human green hegemony is foundationally and functionally  anti-job creation, anti-industrialization, anti-technology and absolutely opposed to economic growth, (the Keystone pipeline vote is one such example of the influence they exert) which they claim is a threat to the environment and a lifestyle they wish society of follow, i.e., a return to nature, which makes me wonder at their sanity.  This puts them squarely at odds with working people and the most economically deprived people on the planet, especially in the third world where their policies and initiatives have had a devastating impact on their health and well being.  Fortunately that’s becoming more and more clear thanks to the internet, but it’s important to understand what all that means.

The green movement’s foundation is firmly rooted with the nature worshipping religion of the Druids in the ancient dark mist covered forests of Germania.  As Gary Jason pointed out in his article, “Death by Environmentalism”, “I would suggest that there is a major strain of pagan or secularist religion, Gaea worship, that informs the movement. This strain of thought, a weird sort of neo-Romantic pantheistic nature cult, has been prevalent since Rousseau in the Enlightenment era, but it exploded throughout the culture in the 1960s. Not all environmentalists share this worldview, but it is the one that drives the movement. And it is one that often downplays the value of people — devalues them and, indeed, de-animates them. That is a topic I would love to see explored in depth.”

In the 1800’s German philosophers created an intellectual framework to explain all of this as “Weltanschauung”, which is a “comprehensive conception or image of the universe and of humanity's relation to it, or literally, world-view”.  This ‘green’ world view became codified in Nazi Germany, the world’s first green government.

One the concepts that emerged from this is what is known as the Precautionary Principle.  Sonja Boehmer Christiansen points out in the book, “Interpreting the Precautionary Principle”, “the precautionary principle evolved out of the German socio-legal tradition, created in the heyday of democratic socialism in the 1930’s, centering on the concept of good household management.  This was regarded as a constructive partnership between the individual, the economy and the state to manage change so as to improve the lot of both society and the natural world upon which it depended for survival. This invested the precautionary principle with a managerial or programmable quality, a purposeful role in guiding future political and regulatory actions”.

What could sound more reasonable?  The problem is –as always - in the application of these concepts.  The Precautionary Principle is absolutely the structural foundation for every bit of junk science and speculatory challenge to modern economic advancement  - whether it’s pesticides, genetically modified organisms, or the building of dams, roads, power plants, or mining and logging.  There are a great many areas of the world where people are suffering from poverty so dire these efforts are the difference between living decent lives versus living in dystopia with disease, squalor, early death and a high rate of child mortality as their standard of life.

The green movement is filled with irrational, misanthropic and morally defective people like "population guru" Paul Ehrlich, who has a “not-so-hidden agenda of stopping people from having children, viewing children as a kind of pollution”.  The most moderate among them want to eliminate between four and five billion people from the planet.  The “radicals” among them feel mankind is a virus and a plague on the planet and want humanity eliminated.

Forrest M. Mims III wrote about a speech at the Texas Academy of Science,  where “the speaker, a world-renowned ecologist, advocated for the extermination of 90 percent of the human species in a most horrible and painful manner……many of the Academy members present gave the speaker a standing ovation. To date, the Academy has not moved to sanction the speaker or distance itself from the speaker's remarks. If the professional community has lost its sense of moral outrage when one if their own openly calls for the slow and painful extermination of over 5 billion human beings, then it falls upon the amateur community to be the conscience of science.”

These “radicals” are never condemned by the rest of their cabal because they must represent a large and prominent minority.

“Walter Williams, the founder of the Malthusian Club of Rome, Alexander King, wrote in 1990: “My own doubts came when DDT was introduced. In Guayana, within two years, it had almost eliminated malaria. So my chief quarrel with DDT, in hindsight, is that it has greatly added to the population problem.”

"Another charming quote comes from Dr. Charles Wurster, a leading opponent of DDT, who said of malaria deaths": “People are the cause of all the problems. We have too many of them. We need to get rid of some of them, and this is as good a way as any.”

"Isn't the only hope for the planet that the industrialised civilizations collapse? Isn't it our responsibility to bring that about?" -- Maurice Strong, head of the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro and Executive Officer for Reform in the Office of the Secretary General of the United Nations.

“Fact is, we all eat food, breathe air and require space, and the more of us there are, the less of those commodities there are for other people and, of course, for the animals.” Sir-David-Attenborough

"The common enemy of humanity is man. In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill. All these dangers are caused by human intervention, and it is only through changed attitudes and behavior that they can be overcome. The real enemy then, is humanity itself."-Club of Rome

“The present vast over population, now far beyond the world carrying capacity cannot be answered by future reductions in the birth rate due to contraception, sterilization and abortion, but must be met in the present by the reduction in the numbers presently existing. This must be done by whatever means necessary” - Initiative for the United Nations, Eco 92 Earth Charter.

"Human beings, as a species, have no more value than slugs." John Davis, editor of the journal Earth First!

Are all these statements about overpopulation and worldwide devastaton nothing more than insane misanthropy or are they justified?  In the real world overpopulation is a myth!  This view is also substantiated by Bjorn Lomborg in his book, "The Skeptical Environmentalist", Part 11.

Wendell Krossa’s article Crimes Against Life, states the following: “Based on numerous empirical studies,(actually observable, not models) the 100ppm increase in atmospheric CO2 content over the past 150 years has increased mean crop yields by the following amounts:

wheat, 60 percent;
other C3 cereals, 70 percent;
C4 cereals, 28 percent;
fruits and melons, 33 percent;
legumes, 62 percent;
root and tuber crops, 67 percent;
and vegetables, 51 percent.[103]”

“Were it not for the extra CO2 put into the atmosphere by fossil fuel combustion, either many people now living would not exist, or many forests now standing would have been cleared and turned into farmland—or both. CO2 emissions are literally greening the planet, enhancing biodiversity and global food availability. Continuing CO2 enrichment of the atmosphere will be necessary to feed a global population expected to increase by 3.3 billion over the next 50 years—and limit pressures to convert forests and wetlands into cropland.”

Yet we see the green movement staunchly defending their Anthropogenic Global Warming position that the world is doomed if we don’t “act now” and get rid of all CO2 emissions.  Virtually ending modern life.  They continue to cling to the global warming litany despite the fact that the world stopped warming officially 18 years ago, and all the computer model predictions are failing or have failed, and the Hockey Stick Graph has been shown so flawed it's considered fraudulent by a growing number.  Yet the green movement wants the world to abandon a culture that has caused more people to live healthier longer lives than ever in history, in favor of dystopia.

The Global Warming movement is a religious movement without God.  It’s a religion of death whose proponents have been successful in “creating a suicide cult, which — if followed to its logical conclusion — will lead to human extinction. Ultimately, the Global Warming crusade is a frontal assault on procreation, the family and the future of mankind.”

How can this be construed as anything except a “betrayal of trust or faith" that’s nothing short of disloyalty to humanity, which supports impairing the well-being of the societies to which they belong.  How can this be construed as anything except treachery in support of treason?

There really is good and evil in the world.  There really is such a thing as right and wrong.  We need to come full face with the fact there are some very real bad guys out there.  They’re not boogey men hiding under the bed that will go away when you cover your head with a blanket.  Throughout human history bad guys have devastated whole societies all over the world, and they were all totalitarians of one sort of another.  They’re weren’t “just wrong”, they really were, and are, evil human beings who were more than willing to sacrifice untold millions to paganism or the neo-pagan secular religions of socialism and it's stepchild - environmentalism.  The green movement is an evil totalitarian movement that perpetrates mass murder, and when you side with them you become an enabler of mass murder.  That’s history.  Those are the facts, and those facts are are incontestable.

If you think going green gives you a warm fuzzy feeling of self-righteousness – get over it because you’re dancing with the Devil and when you dance with the Devil, you won’t call the tune, you won’t pick the dance and you may not be able to leave the dance floor.  And you will be party to treason - not to any government - but to the human family itself.  A family to which we're all a part.  A family we owe loyalty to from birth.  

Government officials take an oath in the United State to "support and defend the Constitution", which means supporting the concepts as outlined in the Declaration of Independence, for Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, which are the logical foundation of our "unalienable rights".

Everything the green movement stands for is antithetical to those rights and concepts and any public official supporting the green movement is guilty of treason against this nation, and against humanity, and if public officials are guilty of treason for supporting this movement can we be any less culpable?


Biofuels - just bad or really bad?

I believe that nature has an inherent value and that the preservation of ecological diversity is a duty of humanity. A pragmatist would point out that some of our most important medical advances were based on compounds refined from ecological inputs but I would argue that even if we never got another drug from the rainforests, preserving their existence and genetic diversity is a duty humankind owes the planet.

My initial education was in the field of ecology and I recognize that the preservation of habitat is one of the most important ways of protecting ecosystems and genetic diversity. So while I readily admit that on the surface biofuels sound promising "fuel that grows itself" "a great use for wood wastes" etc.. as I will describe herein, biofuels place too much stress on our environment for the gain they may provide in fighting climate change, their production pulls too many calories from the human food chain resulting in human misery and in many cases the productions of these biofuels actually exacerbates climate change.

The sad part is that in almost every case biofuels start out sounding like a good idea. The argument goes that biofuels made from waste biomass can give power without incurring an environmental cost and would be carbon neutral. The problem is that there is only so much waste biomass out there and power plants need a steady source of fuel. So in almost every case power producers need to rely not only on waste biomass but on virgin materials. As described in the linked Economist article, in Poland  and Finland, wood meets more than 80% of renewable-energy demand and in Germany, wood makes up 38% of non-fossil fuel power consumption.So where is this wood coming from? As described in the web posting at FSC-Watch in the southern US, NGOs have shown that the biggest US pellet producer, Enviva, is sourcing a high proportion of wood from the clear cutting of bottomland hardwood forests – some of the most biodiverse temperate forests and freshwater ecosystems worldwide.

As for Canada we export about 1.3 million tons of wood pellets, most of it from boreal forests, to Europe every year. As for being "carbon neutral", boreal forests grow slowly and model simulations reported in the journal Climate Change indicate that harvest of a boreal forest will create a "biofuel carbon debt" that takes 190–340 years to repay. So boreal forest wood is carbon neutral as long as you wait 3 centuries or so. To put it in perspective, in order to provide power for the factories and electric cars in Europe, Canadian and US forests are being cut down, often at an unsustainable rate, resulting in the destruction of valuable habitat and loss of ecosystem diversity.

What is most ironic is that the power used by Greenpeace in Europe to fight the "tar sands" theoretical destruction of boreal forests is provided by the cutting down and grinding up of actual Canadian boreal forests.  

So we have now established that power from biomass is a case of good intentions gone awry let's look at ethanol in fuel. So much has been written on the topic that I will only present some highlights here. In the US they have a requirement for ethanol in fuel. This has resulted in pulling corn (the biggest source of US ethanol) out of the food chain. Specifically, as recounted in Forbes, in 2000 over 90% of the U.S. corn crop went to feed people and livestock, many in undeveloped countries, with less than 5% used to produce ethanol. In 2013, however, 40% went to produce ethanol, 45% was used to feed livestock, and only 15% was used for food and beverage. Put another way, enough calories to feed 500 million people were pulled out of the human food chain to run our vehicles? Let me say that again so it sinks in, the ethanol the US burns in its cars each year would feed 500 million people.

The same Forbes article points out that Brazil is clear-cutting almost a million acres of tropical forest per year to produce biofuel and shipping much of the fuel all the way to Europe. The net effect is about 50% more carbon emitted by using these biofuels than using petroleum fuels. As for the argument that the ethanol helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions, a recent article in Science disputes that point. The article points out that corn-based ethanol, instead of producing a 20% savings in greenhouse gases, nearly doubles greenhouse emissions over 30 years and increases greenhouse gases for 167 years (so it will be carbon neutral in 167 years or so). The same article indicates that biofuels from switchgrass, if grown on U.S. corn lands, increase emissions by 50%. Another article in Science indicates that converting rainforests, peatlands, savannas, or grasslands to produce food crop–based biofuels in Brazil, Southeast Asia, and the United States creates a “biofuel carbon debt” by releasing 17 to 420 times more CO2 than the annual greenhouse gas reductions that these biofuels would provide by displacing fossil fuels.

I don't have the space to discuss palm oil here but suffice it to point out that an article at Ensia reports that in 1985, Indonesia had less than 2,500 square miles of palm oil plantation, 20 years later, they covered 21,621 square miles, and by 2025 the Indonesian government projects plantations will cover at least 100,000 square miles. As reported in another article at Ensia a typical palm oil lagoon (a necessary component of the oil palm extraction process) has the same annual climate impact as driving 22,000 passenger cars. Since there are upwards of 1000 of these plantations in Indonesia we are talking the equivalent of 220,000 passenger cars a year, this is in addition to the palm oil plantation's biofuel carbon debt of almost a century.

Going back to my introduction, I care about maintaining the integrity of our shared ecological inheritance. Biofuels, when used in the manner they have been used to date, are destroying that inheritance. Each year hundreds of thousands of hectares of forests in South and Central America and Southeast Asia are being clear-cut or burned in order to free up space for the production of these supposedly "carbon neutral" fuels. Yet these fuels can only be considered carbon neutral if you look at them in century timescales. Unfortunately, very few organisms live lives marked by century timescales.

In order to survive climate change, ecosystems need resiliency and the destruction of habitat reduces resiliency and increases the likelihood of ecological collapse in degraded ecosystems.

Moreover, moving the calories used in biofuels out of the human food-chain has resulted in food scarcity, increased costs for food and a reduction in the availability of inexpensive food available for food aid. Once again well-meaning, but science-blind, activists need to be educated on what their slogans are actually accomplishing, because it is neither ecologically sustainable nor does it decrease Tyndall gas concentrations in our atmosphere.


More on the Pope and the Greens

The press, fond as they are of reporting wild speculation as actual news, has been speculating and reporting-as-news that our Holy Father is going to release an encyclical—a “rare” document carrying the force of “the highest levels of a pope’s authority”—which will tell the world that global warming will doom us all unless we cede the authority of all things to world government.

The uber-left Guardian speculates “Pope Francis’s edict on climate change will anger deniers and US churches“. Edict? As in legally binding command? Denier? As is one who still holds to the scientific precept that consistently bad and busted forecasts imply a bad and busted theory?

Since the pope has not yet released his encyclical, if indeed he is writing one, I can’t find myself being angry. And if he does write one, I don’t think I’ll feel anything besides mild bemusement. Popes do curious things and who am I to judge? So the Guardian got that one wrong. Of course, that’s just speculation on my part about my part, so be sure to check back if and when the pope makes his move and I’ll give you the inside scoop about my inner turmoil, if any.

Why chatter on about my emotions? Good question, that. Why does the Guardian center its efforts on the emotional state of its enemies? Could it be—we’re speculating here—that all this climate frou-frou is not, as we have been told, a mere (and dull) branch of scientific investigation, but is instead an enormous political lever wielded by leftist politicians in an effort to be granted more power?

Only the Lord knows the answer to that difficult question. But I’ll tell you this. Whenever I’ve met an activist, concerned citizen, politizen, or any other person suffering angst over the world’s impending heat-doom, I ask them a few questions. Like, “What is the omega equation? Can you describe CAPE? Would you please tell me everything you know about radiative transfer?” This will shock you, but none know the answers.

Now isn’t that odd? This is supposed to the end-of-the-world, ooggly-boogly, what-about-the-children stuff, the science of which is settled. Facts so sure that only deniers would deny them. You would have guessed, therefore, that those most vigorously wringing their hands would have boned up on the subject which is so dear to them. Best anybody can do, though, is to point to something some scientist said, a statement about which they are in no position to judge. To these folks science just is another branch of politics, subject to majority-rules vote.


I’m only speculating, but the Guardian has surely condemned “the Vatican” before, using terms like “medieval”, “patriarchal”, “controlling” and so forth, none of which (strangely) they mean as compliments. Nothing the writers there (and at Think Progress, etc.) would like better than to see this ancient institution busted up or forced to bow to modern fetishes. (True-as-vote yet again.) So what are we to make of the strange glee of the perpetually “outraged” reporter who wrote that the pope’s yet-to-be-written encyclical “will be sent to the world’s 5,000 Catholic bishops and 400,000 priests, who will distribute it to parishioners”?

Obviously, this reporter (who also saw fit to liken Francis to Superman) is hopeful that Catholics must and will obey the Holy Father and start to believe there is no more worse problem than global warming.

Boy, is this guy in for awakening (if the pope really does release an encyclical stating global warming is the Most Important Problem Ever). Western Catholics aren’t well known for toeing the line. Many turn a cold shoulder to dogma, so it’s not likely that something as minor as an encyclical about environmental science will be compelling.

Switching gears, I was surprised-and-then-not-surprised to read “a strong majority of white evangelicals in the U.S. believe that worsening natural disasters are a sign of the apocalypse, not climate change, and other conservative evangelical sects will likely oppose Francis’ efforts.”

That makes no sense. If “white evangelicals” believe “the severity of recent natural disasters is evidence of what the Bible calls ‘the end times'” you think they’d be on board with the pope’s imagined encyclical. Bring on the heat, baby, and end this thing!

But then the question itself is flawed. Natural disasters are decreasing not increasing, both in frequency and severity. The reduction in frequency is a result of the climate changing (for the better), and the lessening of severity is because of inter alia the wise use of fossil fuels and technological increase.

God bless the pope.


Cause of the Pause in Global Warming

S. Fred Singer points out that the explanations offered for the "pause" are all unproven theory

There has been essentially no global warming since 1998.  Some would choose 1997, others would more conservatively use 2002 as the proper starting date, based on satellite data.  Of course, this is quite unexpected, since CO2 -- a leading GHG, which climate models presume to cause anthropogenic global warming (AGW) -- has been increasing rapidly in the 21st century.

Even if we cannot readily find the cause for the “pause” -- as it is sometimes called -- we can be absolutely sure that it was not predicted by any of the dozens of the UN-IPCC’s General Circulation Models (GCMs).  Therefore, logically, such non-validated GCMs cannot, and should not, be used to predict the future climate -- or as a basis for policy decisions.

Here I would like to discuss some of the possible causes for the GW “hiatus.”  Its existence is creating a scientific challenge for climate skeptics -- and a real crisis for alarmists; it can no longer be ignored by any who consider themselves to be scientists -- nor, indeed, by responsible politicians.

One possibility, of course, may be that the pause is simply a statistical fluctuation, like tossing a coin, with 15 to 18 heads in a row.  Such an explanation cannot be dismissed out of hand, even though it has a very low probability -- which becomes even smaller with each passing year of no GW.  Obviously, climate alarmists like this possibility -- although the number of such ‘true believers’ is shrinking.  Most have started to look for a physical cause for the pause -- an explanation of why current GCMs are failing to match observations.

Internal and external causes

When we look at possible causes, we should first of all distinguish between internal and external ones that might offset the expected GW from CO2.  Internal causes rely on negative feedbacks from either water vapor (WV) or clouds; they act to decrease the warming that should be attributed to increasing CO2.  The problem with internal effects is they can never fully eliminate the primary cause -- almost by definition.  So even if they diminish the CO2 effect somewhat, there should still be a remaining warming trend, though small.

It is quite important to obtain empirical evidence for a negative feedback.  In the case of water vapor, one would look to see if the cold upper troposphere (UT) was dry or moist.  If moist, as assumed implicitly in current IPCC-GCMs, one gets a positive feedback -- i.e., an amplification of the CO2-caused warming.  On the other hand, if the upper troposphere is dry, then most emissions into space take place from WV in the warm boundary layer in the lower troposphere.  This leaves less energy available to be emitted into space from the surface through the atmospheric ‘window,’ and therefore produces a cooler surface.

[NB: To avoid the vexing issue of the effects of the down-welling infrared radiation, it is easiest to think of long-term zero energy imbalance, as measured by satellites at the top of the atmosphere -- after the underlying atmosphere adjusts.  Imbalance = incoming less reflected solar radiant energy minus the heat energy from surface and atmosphere escaping to space.]

The physical model I have in mind for this negative WV feedback is based on a proposal of Prof. William Gray (Colorado State University), who pictured cumulus clouds carrying moisture into the UT, but occupying only a small area; the remaining (and much larger) area experiences descending air (“subsidence”) -- hence drying.  In principle, it should be possible to measure this difficult-to-explain effect fairly easily, using available satellite data.

Negative feedback from increased cloudiness is easier to describe but more difficult to measure.  The idea is simply that a slight increase in sea-surface (SST) temperature (from the GH effect of a rising CO2) also increases evaporation (according to the well-known “Clausius-Clapeyron” relation), and that this increased atmospheric moisture can also increase cloudiness.  The net effect is a greater (reflecting) albedo, less sunlight reaching the surface, and therefore a negative feedback that reduces the original warming from increasing CO2.

Unfortunately, establishing the reality of this cloud feedback requires a measurement of global cloudiness with an accuracy of a small fraction of a percent -- a very difficult problem.

We now turn to external effects that might explain the existence of a global warming pause; the principal ones are volcanism and solar activity.  The problem here is one of balancing; the amount of cooling by volcanism, for example, has to be just right to offset the warming from CO2 during the entire duration of the pause.  It is difficult to picture why exactly this might be happening; the probabilities seem rather small.  Still, the burden is on the proponents to demonstrate various kinds of evidence in support of such an explanation.

Similarly, atmospheric aerosols, generally human-caused, can increase albedo and cool the planet -- especially if they also increase cloudiness by providing condensation nuclei for WV.

Hidden Warming?

Note that all the explanations mentioned so far act to reduce ‘climate forcing’ -- defined as the energy imbalance measured at the top of the atmosphere (TOA)

There is an important school of thought that does not rely on offsetting the forcing from increased CO2; instead it assumes that there really exists an imbalance at the TOA and that GW is taking place somewhere, but is not easily seen.  Many assume that the “missing heat” is hiding in the deep ocean.  It is difficult to see how such a mechanism can function without also raising surface temperatures; but an oscillation in ocean currents might produce such a result.

Still, if measurements could demonstrate a gradual increase in stored ocean heat, one would be forced to consider possible mechanisms.  Its proponents might be asked, however, why the storage increase started just when it did; when will it end; and how will the energy eventually be released, and with what manifestations?

There is yet another possibility worth considering:  The missing energy might be used to melt ice rather than warm the ocean.  Again, quantitative empirical evidence might support such a scenario.  But how to explain the starting date of the pause -- and how soon might it end?

Yet another explanation

It is generally accepted that the warming effect from CO2 increases roughly as the logarithm of CO2 concentration.  The reason has to do with the broadness and shape of the CO2 absorption lines -- as is well known among molecular spectroscopists.  But even the log of CO2 would show a steady rise, albeit smaller than that of CO2 itself; so that this simple explanation does not work.

But CO2 is an interesting and complicated molecule.  Its climate-forcing effect might actually decline to zero -- albeit for only a number of years.  The reason is that part of the CO2 absorption and emission takes place in the stratosphere, where the temperature gradient is positive, i.e. there is warming with increasing altitude, instead of cooling.

But until someone does the necessary work, by analyzing available satellite data, one should not put too much faith in this hypothesis.

So after all, the global warming pause still remains somewhat of a puzzle.  The simplest description is that the climate sensitivity is close to zero -- as demonstrated empirically.  But why?  How then to explain the reported surface warming from 1975 to 2000?


Regardless of any unsettled science details, it seems sure that current climate models cannot represent what is actually happening in the atmosphere -- and therefore one should not rely on predictions from such unvalidated models that are based simply on increases of carbon dioxide.  It should be obvious that this discussion has important policy consequences since so many politicians are wedded to the idea that CO2 needs to be controlled in order to avoid “dangerous changes of the global climate.”


Special interests influence costly EPA regulations

Sue-and-settle lawsuits exclude the public from participating in the regulatory process

Collusive relationships between the EPA and powerful special interest Green organizations are producing regulatory policies and rules, imposing enormous penalties upon our constitutional freedoms, living and business costs, and national free market competitiveness.

Revolving-door employment exchanges between private lobbies and government facilitate these incestuous collaborations. An important tactic involves use of wink-and-nod lawsuits whereby environmental lobbying entities are secretly encouraged to sue the agency for remedies desired by both sides, then quietly settle out of court.

Although such practices are not new or limited to a single federal agency, those involving the EPA are nevertheless very much on the rise. Many target fossil fuel industries, coal in particular, commonly applying ever-expanding rulemaking claims premised under authority of its Clean Air Act. Two major inside players are the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the Sierra Club.

Two watchdog organizations, the Energy and Environmental Legal Institute (E&E Legal) and the Free Market Environmental Law Clinic (FMELC), recently sent a letter to EPA Inspector General Arthur Elkins requesting an investigation into collusive deals whereby the agency allowed the NRDC and the Sierra Club to help write regulatory policy for its war on coal. E&E Legal and FMELC have pieced together evidence taken from hundreds of e-mails obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

The New York Times reports that the NRDC is also the subject of an ongoing congressional inquiry, based upon other e-mails indicating that EPA has stocked its senior positions with politically appointed officials from various Green groups. This arrangement afforded those groups unprecedented access to former colleagues — leading to unlawful influence toward shared ends to the detriment of due process constitutional rights of other parties.

E&E Legal’s attorney Chris Horner commented, “EPA’s hostility toward transparency is now well established.” As of now, the EPA uses every tool at its disposal to delay FOIA responses. Accordingly, Horner observes that, “The Inspector General even recently sent letters to Congress complaining that EPA bureaucrats were obstructing his investigations” . . . and evidence shows that “EPA’s Inspector General must now pursue conflicts of interest and collusion and how they influenced EPA’s most controversial and expensive regulatory agenda ever.”

E-mail exchanges between former EPA head Lisa Jackson and the NRDC’s Frances Beinecke reveal the organization’s long and powerful influence, provoking the LisaEPAjaCKSONHouse Oversight and Government Reform Committee to investigate what lawyers and economists refer to as “regulatory capture.”  This is a cozy relationship where a regulatory agency becomes so beholden to special interests it no longer acts in the interests of the rest of us.

As reported by the Daily Caller’s Michael Bastasch, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa wrote to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and NRDC President Beinecke stating:L “It appears that NDRC’s unprecedented access to high-level EPA officials allowed it to influence EPA policy decisions and achieve its own private agenda.”

The letter went on to say, “Such collusive activities provide the NRDC, and their financial backers, with [an] inappropriate opportunity to wield the broad powers of the executive branch.”

New York Times climate and energy writer Coral Davenport reported that NRDC lobbyists David Doniger, David Hawkins, and Daniel Lashof crafted the EPA plan “aimed at slashing planet-warming carbon pollution from the nation’s coal-fired power plants.”  This, she believes, served as the inspiration, if not the blueprint, for the EPA’s new rules.

issa1The sue-and-settle approach, sometimes referred to as “friendly lawsuits” or “regulation through litigation,” obtains consent decrees from cherry-picked courts based upon prearranged settlement agreements — collaboratively crafted together behind closed doors.

Then, rather than allowing the entire process to play out, the agency being sued settles the lawsuit by agreeing to move forward with the requested action they and the litigants both want. More than 60 such EPA agreements have been reached with the NRDC and other environmental groups in just the past 4 years with little or no Congressional input or oversight.

While the environmental group is given a seat at the table, outsiders who are most impacted are excluded, with no opportunity to object to the settlements. No public notice about the settlement is released until the agreement is filed in court — after the damage has been done. On top of all that, generous government taxpayers typically pay the legal fees of both colluding parties.

No responsible person wants polluted land, air and water. While government has important roles to ensure responsible environmental safeguards, protections are also needed to ensure responsible and accountable regulatory processes.

 This will not occur as long as unelected bureaucrats in concert with ideological zealots and special interest cronies are free to craft and impose back-door regulatory rulings with sweeping impacts upon the rest of us.


First coal-seam gas loaded for export from Australia

The world's first coal-seam-gas to LNG facility starts up.  Greenies hate coal seam gas, of course, but both the Queensland and Federal government support it

BG Group began loading the first cargo of LNG from its Queensland Curtis LNG (QCLNG) facility to the vessel Methane Rita Andrea December 28. The second cargo of LNG from the facility will be loaded onto the Methane Mickie Harper, which is expected in Gladstone in the first week of January.

QCLNG is the world's first LNG project to be supplied by coal seam gas. The start of production from the plant's first LNG train is the result of more than four years of development and construction on Curtis Island.

The project will expand further with the startup of the second train in the third quarter of 2015. At plateau production, expected during 2016, QCLNG will have an output of around 8 million metric tons of LNG a year.

Andrew Gould, interim Executive Chairman, said, "This is an immense achievement which demonstrates the company's ability to deliver a highly complex LNG project. The start-up of QCLNG is testament to the hard work, skill and dedication of all our employees, partners and customers including the thousands of individuals who have been involved in physically building the plant.

The ongoing support from both the State Government of Queensland and the local councils of our upstream region and in Gladstone has also been pivotal in this development. We thank them all."



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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