Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Bill Nye now thinks he is a psychologist

In fact he's not a scientist of any kind.  He's just an entertainer.  And his account of cognitive dissonance is exactly ass-about.  Cognitive dissonance arises when your prophecies fail.  He is the one suffering from cognitive dissonance. When has a Greenie prophecy ever got anything right?  He's not even capable of Googling or he would not have made such a howler

Bill Nye said Monday that climate change skeptics suffer from a psychological problem preventing them from understanding how so-called man-made global warming affects their daily lives.

Climate change skeptics suffer from cognitive dissonance on global warming, a type of psychological disorder that prevents people from recognizing reality, the comedian and former TV show host told Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders during a Facebook Live event.

“To the deniers out there. I want you to think about what is called cognitive dissonance,” Nye said, referring to situations wherein people prefer to bury their head in the sand instead of facing reality. It’s up to environmentalists and everybody else to save skeptics from themselves, he added.

“Instead of accepting that the climate is changing, deniers are denying the evidence and dismissing the authorities” simply because they don’t want to face a harsh reality, Nye said.


A new temperature record from China gives no hint of any recent warming that can be attributed to atmospheric CO2

But medieval warm period observed

A 2000-Year Temperature History of China's Animaqin Mountains

Paper Reviewed: Chen, F., Zhang, Y., Shao, X., Li, M.Q. and Yin, Z.-Y. 2016. "A 2000-year temperature reconstruction in the Animaqin Mountains of the Tibet Plateau, China". The Holocene 26: 1904-1913.

Introducing their study, Chen et al. (2016) write that "high-resolution temperature reconstruction for the past 2000 years is imperative for understanding long-term natural climate variations and for estimating anthropogenic influence on the climate system." And, therefore, they developed an even longer April-June 2665-year tree-ring width chronology based on April-June maximum temperatures recorded at four meteorological stations located near Qilian juniper trees growing near the upper tree-line of the Animaqin Mountains on the eastern Tibetan Plateau.

And what did they learn by so doing?

As illustrated in the accompanying figure below, the four researchers report that "the warmest period occurred in AD 890-947, that "the coldest period occurred in AD 351-483," that "no obvious warming trend since the industrial revolution was observed," that "the mean of the most recent 50 years was only slightly higher than that of the whole series," and that it "has not yet reached the high values attained earlier."

In addition, Chen et al. note "the results of wavelet analysis showed the occurrence of significant quasi-periodic patterns at a number of occurring periods (2-8 years, 20-30 years, 30-60 years, and 60-130 years," as well as "some long-term periods (more than 200 years)," which they say were "consistent with those associated with ENSO [El Nino Southern Oscillation], PDO [the Pacific Decadal Oscillation], and solar activity."

Last of all, the five researchers report that "the warmest period was from AD 890 to 947, as opposed to the recent period," which finding implies that there has been nothing unusual, unnatural or unprecedented about the Animaqin Mountains' recent thermal history.


New EPA Administrator Emphasizes Federalism, Rule of Law

“The future ain’t what it used to be at the EPA.” That was the message of Scott Pruitt, the newly confirmed administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, to conservatives gathered Saturday at the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC. “Process, rule of law, and cooperative federalism, that is going to be the heart of how we do business at the EPA,” Pruitt said.

In his role as EPA administrator, Pruitt said that he would work to restore the role of the states.

“What really matters a lot is federalism,” the former Oklahoma attorney general said.

“We are going to once again pay attention to states across this country. I believe the people in Oklahoma, in Texas, Indiana, Ohio, New York, and California and all the states across the country … care about the air they breathe and they care about the water they drink and we are going to be partners with those individuals, not adversaries.”

Pruitt said the EPA will also “pay attention to process.” “We are not going to bypass rule-making,” he said. “We are going to do the work that Congress has said we must do.” The new administrator also said he will make sure the EPA pays “keen attention to [the] rule of law.”

“As we engage in real rule-making, as we make sure that we don’t use the courts to regulate, we are going to do so with a keen attention to rule of law,” Pruitt said. “Rule of law matters.”

Pruitt said executive agencies must operate under the authority Congress has given them, and not go beyond it.

“Executive agencies only have the power that Congress has given them,  they can’t make it up as they go,” Pruitt said. “They can’t fill in the blank. They can’t say, ‘We’re just simply going to go forward without Congress speaking.’”


Household solar storage increases emissions, study concludes

Contrary to popular belief, household storage for solar power doesn’t reduce cost or emissions, an American study suggests.

As charging and discharging a home battery itself consumes energy, feeding surplus solar power into the storage device instead of into the grid results in higher overall electricity consumption for the household, as well as higher emissions because the increased consumption needs to be covered by fossil fuel-based energy.

This increase is quite substantial – up to 591KWh annually.

“I expected that storage would lead to an increase in energy consumption,” said Robert Fares from the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, “but I was surprised that the increase could be so significant - about an eight to 14 per cent increase on average over the year.”

Fares, together with Professor Michael Webber, analysed the impact of home energy storage using electricity data from almost 100 Texas households that are part of a smart grid test bed managed by Austin-based renewable energy and smart technology company Pecan Street Inc.

The results are relevant for Texas, where the majority of grid electricity comes from fossil fuels. As a result, the increased consumption due to storage technology leads to higher carbon, sulphur and nitrogen dioxide emissions.

The situation, however, is different for utility companies, which could reduce their peak grid demand by up to 32 per cent thanks to solar energy storage and cut down the magnitude of solar power injections to the grid by up to 42 per cent.

“These findings challenge the myth that storage is inherently clean, but that, in turn, offers useful insights for utility companies,” Webber said.

“If we use the storage as the means to foster the adoption of significantly more renewables that offset the dirtiest sources, then storage - done the right way and installed at large-scale - can have beneficial impacts on the grid's emissions overall."

The study was published in the journal Nature Energy.

According to the Solar Energy Industry Association, the number of rooftop solar installations grew to more than one million US households in 2016. There is a growing interest in using energy storage to capture solar energy to reduce reliance on traditional utilities.


CLIMATE MODELS for the layman

Judith Curry

Executive summary:

There is considerable debate over the fidelity and utility of global climate models (GCMs). This debate occurs within the community of climate scientists, who disagree about the amount of weight to give to climate models relative to observational analyses. GCM outputs are also used by economists, regulatory agencies and policy makers, so GCMs have received considerable scrutiny from a broader community of scientists, engineers, software experts, and philosophers of science. This report attempts to describe the debate surrounding GCMs to an educated but nontechnical audience.

Key summary points

 *  GCMs have not been subject to the rigorous verification and validation that is the norm for engineering and regulatory science.

 *  There are valid concerns about a fundamental lack of predictability in the complex nonlinear climate system.

 *  There are numerous arguments supporting the conclusion that climate models are not fit for the purpose of identifying with high confidence the proportion of the 20th century warming that was human-caused as opposed to natural.

 *  There is growing evidence that climate models predict too much warming from increased atmospheric carbon dioxide.

 *  The climate model simulation results for the 21st century reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) do not include key elements of climate variability, and hence are not useful as projections for how the 21st century climate will actually evolve.

Climate models are useful tools for conducting scientific research to understand the climate system. However, the above points support the conclusion that current GCMs are not fit for the purpose of attributing the causes of 20th century warming or for predicting global or regional climate change on timescales of decades to centuries, with any high level of confidence. By extension, GCMs are not fit for the purpose of justifying political policies to fundamentally alter world social, economic and energy systems. It is this application of climate model results that fuels the vociferousness of the debate surrounding climate models



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