Tuesday, July 03, 2018

Fred Singer Now Agrees:  CO2 COOLS Climate

Lukewarmers concede the basic science behind Warmism but cannot see any reason why the warming will be anything more than trivial

One of the world’s most respected climate scientists, Dr Fred Singer, publishes an article admitting that top scientists have privately been conceding that carbon dioxide (CO2) DOES act to cool the atmosphere. Now some are going public.

With ‘Does the Greenhouse Gas CO2 cool the climate?‘ (April 2, 2018) Professor Singer, emeritus professor of environmental science at the University of Virginia admits “Much further work awaits!” as ever more peer-reviewed papers are abandoning the so-called greenhouse gas theory, 17 such papers have been published in recent months. 

Singer’s latest admission, while accompanied with the usual nuanced middle-of-the-road lukewarming equivocations, will be regarded as a boost to the findings of 1,300+ independent scientists and researchers (The ‘Slayers’) at Principia Scientific International (PSI). Since publication of their ground-breaking book (2010) the ‘Slayers’ have insisted that empirical scientific evidence (not climate models) proves CO2 cools the climate. As such, the trace atmospheric gas (a mere 0.04 percent by volume) therefore cannot be blamed for global warming or act as earth’s climate’s control knob.

Singer’s  latest admission proves there is a growing and undeniable intellectual schism among the world’s leading climate experts. Singer reveals the change of thinking has come after private discussions with the brightest and best, including Professor William Happer. Happer called climate science “a glassy-eyed cult.”

The greenhouse gas theory predicts that more CO2 in the air causes higher temperatures by “trapping” heat and/or delaying cooling. Even NASA had bought into the non-science nonsense that CO2 was guilty and earth’s atmosphere acts like a greenhouse, but well refuted in ‘Slaying the Sky Dragon: Death of the Greenhouse Gas Theory.’ In the eight years since publication, this important book is being vindicated by the real world evidence, so something has clearly gone awry with the theory. Even to non-scientists, it is very clear that ever-rising levels of atmospheric CO2 are out of step with global temperatures, which have remained stubbornly flat for a generation.

Professor Singer writes of the “puzzling ineffectiveness of the greenhouse gas (GHG) carbon dioxide (CO2) in warming the climate”

Implying that government climate science has been on the wrong track since the 1980’s Singer observes:

“Such is the power of group-think that even experts, with some exception, find the idea that CO2 might cool the climate difficult to accept.“

That “some exception” is Principia Scientific International (PSI). PSI has been forthright in challenging both alarmists and lukewarmists to openly and publicly debate the theory, but there have been no takers. In 2015 the ‘Slayers’ drew ire from Singer after senior PSI scientist, Joseph E Postma published ‘Dr Fred Singer’s Position Consistent with No Radiative Greenhouse Gas Effect.’

Postma, a young Canadian space scientist, had the temerity to claim Singer stood apart from other lukewarmers and was “converging on the truth” after Singer published an article where he conceded climate sensitivity to CO2 was “close to zero.” At the time Singer confessed:

“I should note that I am somewhat out of step here with my fellow skeptics. Few of them would agree with me that the climate sensitivity (CS) is indeed close to zero. I will have to publish the analyses to prove my point and try to convince them. Of course, nothing, no set of facts, will ever convince the confirmed climate alarmists.” [3]

Fellow PSI scientist, Dr Pierre R Latour spoke of discussions he had with Singer, both in person and in emails. At the time Singer conceded there were problems with the GHE when assessing molecular transition and lapse rate. Latour wrote:

“I met Singer at his University of Houston lecture hosted by Prof Larry Bell on February 6, 2012 and his several talks at the latest Heartland Institute ICCC, Las Vegas, July 7-9, 2014….Singer correctly notes there are several different temperatures involved; a source of confusion I discovered years ago. The Greenhouse Gas Effect Theory (GHE) literature is intellectually incoherent, a mess. He is correct to point out atmospheric global warming ceased since 1997 until now, 2014. The globe warms about half the time, 4.6 billion/2 = 2.3 billion years. It cools half the time also.

Singer now thinks it is possible that CO2 could be the one ‘greenhouse gas’ that “produces cooling of the climate when its molecular transitions are in a region of positive lapse rate.”

Professor Singer points to persuasive new scientific findings now triggering a reassessment of CO2’s role in climate. Singer clarified further:

“Another example is temperature over the winter poles [Happer – private communication; Flanner et al. GRL 2018]. While the climate cooling is not obvious, it counters [conventional] GH warming.”

While Singer, Happer et al. play catch up elsewhere climate realism has taken hold already. Even in Japan, scientists are pointing out the hidden fatal errors James Hansen et al. rely on and another paper in 2018 shows how our planet’s temperature is easily explained without reliance on any GHE. Recently, Russian scientists have declared the ‘greenhouse gas’ science is dead as global cooling sets in; while a team of Italian scientists are demanding a wider and “deep re-examination” of the failing theory.


A Defense of Scott Pruitt


The past few weeks’ media frenzy about EPA administrator Scott Pruitt is a manufactured crisis, punctuated by false or exaggerated accusations, then followed by necessary corrections from ostensibly responsible media outlets, who let their determination to “get” Pruitt override their journalistic ethics, a seeming oxymoron when it comes to reporting about Scott Pruitt.

Two weeks ago, the Washington Post breathlessly reported that Scott Pruitt had instructed his EPA staff to find his wife a job. Juicy, if true. Unfortunately, that’s not the whole story. While some EPA staff members may have taken it upon themselves to get involved in her job search, I was the person who was working with Marlyn Pruitt on a regular basis to help her find work that would suit her skills and would not violate government ethics rules. As a lawyer who deals with executive and congressional ethics regulations, I was and am well aware of the requirements. We were mindful at all times of the need to ensure that any work she undertook was within the ethics rules, and it absolutely has been.

Scott Pruitt has been a good friend of mine since his days as Oklahoma attorney general and I have talked with and tried to help him through the years, well before he joined the Trump administration.

Last year, I voluntarily assisted Mrs. Pruitt in seeking professional opportunities that would steer clear of any ethics rules involving the EPA or Administrator Pruitt. It was 100 percent above board and within government ethics rules and at no time did I speak with or hear from any EPA employee regarding their “helping” with her job hunt.

To say that the administrator “used” EPA staffers to get his wife a job simply isn’t true. I know because I was directly involved in this effort. It was done in a spirit of helping my friends and fellow Oklahomans, something I’ve done for others from Oklahoma who have moved to Washington, where I’ve lived for more than 25 years.

After receiving the facts, the New York Times was forced to issue a correction.  False story: page 1. Correction to false story: small print, page 2.

Following the Washington Post’s report, National Review called for Scott Pruitt’s resignation. That was both startling and disappointing. The allegations against Pruitt are actually quite benign, when one takes time to learn the facts. It is only because the reporting is conducted at such a high decibel level that the “stories” create a false narrative of some major wrongdoing.

The media vendetta against Pruitt is so vicious that stories are published about him with zero concern about accuracy. The New York Times demonstrated its bias against Pruitt and didn’t exactly cover itself with glory when it falsely reported last week that he used his position at EPA to get his daughter into the University of Virginia Law school. After receiving the facts — which included a letter from UVA stating that the Pruitts’ daughter was admitted in the fall of 2016, before Donald Trump was even elected — the New York Times was forced to issue a correction.  False story: page 1. Correction to false story: small print, page 2.

The accusations against Scott Pruitt are intended to build a narrative that because he has done various things that allegedly violate federal ethics rules, he cannot continue to serve as EPA administrator. But the chief agenda of the leftists is to sweep away Pruitt’s policy mindset and thwart his laudable efforts to rein in the EPA.

So what exactly has he done wrong?

We’re told he flew first class at a high cost to taxpayers. But he did so amid well-documented security concerns. The viciousness of the death threats against Pruitt are real, and his security detail has provided to Congress its review of the threats against him and their conclusion that security for this Trump official was not going to be easy. Or cheap.

I’ve received nasty emails and calls from strangers simply because I’ve been identified as the trustee of the Pruitt Legal Expenses Trust Fund. But the nasty emails to me pale in comparison to the serious threats against Pruitt.

The attacks against Pruitt are a pretext for what the Left is really angry about: Trump’s election and his subsequent naming of Pruitt as EPA administrator — and the remarkable job Pruitt is doing on policy matters.

Other members of the Trump administration have been similarly subjected to death threats against themselves and their families. And in just the past few days, those attacks and threats are being escalated against White House staffers and others simply for supporting President Trump.

The Pruitt allegations may point to missteps or errors of judgment, but such mistakes are not criminal, violent, immoral, or wicked.

The attacks against Scott Pruitt are a pretext for what the Left is really angry about: President Trump’s election and his subsequent naming of Scott Pruitt as EPA administrator — and the remarkable job Pruitt is doing on policy matters at the EPA. He is wresting control of this taxpayer-funded agency from the clutches of the environmental activists and groups that have taken as given that the agency belongs to them rather than the American people.

As Scott Pruitt fights the battle to restore environmental common sense and the rule of law to the EPA, those who hate such ideas are treating all of us to a full display of how they fight. They rail against the substance, to be sure, but they are also skilled in the art of character assassinations — and that’s what is driving the narrative against Pruitt, as they hope that their sworn enemy can be toppled by their relentless attacks. The Left knows how to use the media and various government “ethics” officials and agencies to wage their wars, and that is exactly what they are doing to Scott Pruitt.

Those leading the attacks against Pruitt have nothing but contempt for the principles that NR holds dear. It would be well to be mindful of the reality of what is really happening here and for NR to stand up and fight against the vicious Left, rather than throwing in with them on something this important.


CO2 is safe

There is plenty of scientific literature about toxicity levels of carbon dioxide (CO2). Despite media alarm we show how scientists have proven CO2 is not only safe, but an important benefit to life.

Do scientists believe CO2 in high concentrations is a danger to life? Well, studies have shown that full-face motorbike helmets retain an astonishing 20,000ppm of carbon dioxide. Bikers working long hours as couriers are the most exposed to this so-called ‘toxic’ gas touted as a ‘pollutant’ by climate alarmists at the comparatively microscopic level of only 400ppm.

So bikers are every day inhaling levels FIFTY TIMES higher than climate ‘experts’ regard as safe. So much for experts!

But what are the known effects of long-term breathing of high levels of CO2?

Very few studies exist related to long-term exposure at lower CO2 levels, elevated above ambient. This is ascribed to logistical reasons as it is difficult to conduct experiments for the duration of a human life-span.

As with other aerobic organisms, CO2 is the waste product of human exhalation. Breathing delivers oxygen to where it is needed in the body and removes carbon dioxide thereby exchanging oxygen and carbon dioxide between the body and the environment.

International Space Station (ISS) crew members have reported symptoms associated with acute CO2 exposure at levels of 5,000 to 6,600 ppm CO2. Commonly reported symptom includes headache, lethargy, mental slowness, emotional irritation, and sleep disruption (Law et al. 2010).

However, when looking to determine impacts on astronauts NASA acknowledges there are no studies into the safe levels for long-term exposure to CO2 (Cronyn et al. 2012). As such, they estimated the maximum allowable CO2 concentration limits, for long term (1,000 day) habitation of submarines and spacecraft, at 5,000 ppm (James and Macatangay 2009).

In the US the safe exposure limits for an 8-hour working day was decided in 1946. This is set at 5,000 ppm (OSHA 2012). This limit is based on observations of fit and healthy submariners (Scott et al, 2009). A value of 40,000 ppm is considered immediately dangerous to life and health given that a 30-minute exposure to 50,000 ppm produces intoxication, and concentrations around 70,000 ppm produce unconsciousness (NIOSH 1996). Additionally, acute toxicity data show the lethal concentration for CO2 is 90,000 ppm (9%) for a 5 minute exposure.

For worker safety, the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration sets a permissible exposure limit (PEL) for CO2 of 5,000 parts per million (ppm) (or 0.5 %) over an 8-hour work day (OSHA 2012). They report that exposure to levels of CO2 above this can cause problems with concentration, an increased heart rate, breathing issues, headaches and dizziness.

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is also a feedback mechanism in helping to regulate the rate of breathing (Patton and Thibodeau 2009) since the blood level of CO2 acts directly on the respiratory centres in the brain stimulating the nerves that activate the respiratory muscles. High levels of carbon dioxide correspond with high levels of acid (low pH) in the blood and signal the need for more exchange with oxygen.

Inhaling high levels of CO2 results in high concentrations in the blood (hypercapnia) associated with a decrease in blood pH (increased acidity) resulting in a condition known as acidosis.

Body Adaptation to Long-term Exposure

With long-term, continuous exposure to high levels of CO2 human organs adapt and regulate for increased CO2 and acidity in the blood. To compensate the body employs pH buffering systems in the blood, along with increased breathing to flush out CO2 in the bloodstream; more activity in the kidneys to restore pH balance, plus widening of the blood vessels (Burton 1978; Eckenhoff and Longnecker 1995). Cerebral blood flow (CBF) increases to effectively wash out CO2 from brain tissue and helps regulate central pH (Ainslie and Duffin, 2009). Sliwka et al. (1998) found that cerebral blood flow is increased in the presence of 7,000 ppm (0.7%) CO2 by as much as 35%.


Think Coal Is Dead? It Could Be About To Soar

Although it may not be the most fashionable of assets, analysts are warming to coal. Ironically, lobbying by anti-fossil fuel activists to prevent new mines being built may have inadvertently helped to support coal prices.

Increasing worries about climate change and the desire for major institutions to be seen as responsible have prompted insurance giants such as Axa and ING to sell out of fossil fuel-related businesses.

Even Norway’s massive sovereign wealth fund, built on the back of the country’s oil wealth, has advised it is reducing its exposure to fossil fuels.

But according to analysts, coal investments are not going to go up in smoke just yet. Though the amount of energy being generated from renewables is increasing, and some of the City’s top investors have started ploughing their cash into clean energy, there is still demand for dirty old coal.

Analysts at investment bank Jefferies released a note to investors this month saying that ‘rumours of coal’s death are premature’.

It has raised its target price of seaborne thermal coal, burned for steam to generate electricity, as opposed to coking coal, which is used to create steel and iron, from £68 to £80 per ton for the remainder of 2018. It also lifted its long-term estimate from £49 to £63 per ton.

Christopher LaFemina, an equity analyst at the bank, said the predictions ‘may still be too low’, though they were well above other analysts’ predictions.

So what has been causing coal prices to smoulder once again? After all, oil giant BP said earlier this month that renewables were ‘by far’ the fastest-growing fuel source.

Though it may have become a dirty word in the UK, with the government putting all its energy into funding renewables, coal is still a vital commodity in developing countries where it fuels the economy.

Jason Hollands, managing director at investment manager Tilney, said: ‘In the near-term, the realities of increased demand against the backdrop of the continued global economic expansion are evident, with strong demand from India and South East Asia.

‘India in particular is struggling with supplies, which are essential for both its electricity network and steel production, and Australia looks set to be a key beneficiary of this.’

Australia was the second-largest exporter of thermal coal last year, sending 206m tons, according to Jefferies. Indonesia was the largest, exporting 387m tons.

Ironically, lobbying by anti-fossil fuel activists to prevent new mines being built may have inadvertently helped to support coal prices, Hollands said.

As prices are driven up, London-listed miners – including some of the biggest companies on the FTSE 100 – should benefit. Anglo American and Glencore were two of Jefferies’ top picks for coal miners in Europe. Anglo’s shares have fired up by 152 per cent over the last three years to 1636p, while Glencore’s have climbed by the smaller margin of 36 per cent to 358p.

But while there may be some perks to investing in coal for now, Hollands advised investors to approach the black stuff with caution.

He said: ‘While the near-term dynamics look positive for coal, this is a quite a narrow theme.

‘For the long-term investor, there is no doubt that the shift to cleaner forms of energy is going to continue, with the real debate simply around the timescale.’


Australia: Council faces backlash over bid for solar farm

A push by a Greens-led council for the nation’s first major solar farm in an urban area has infuriated ­residents who fear construction on the former rubbish dump will unleash asbestos and heavy metals.

The industrial-scale solar farm is a key plank in the City of Fremantle’s bid to be powered 100 per cent by renewable energy by 2025.

But residents who spoke to The Australian said they were more concerned about the public health risks of the project being built near hundreds of houses.

The 8ha solar farm, to be built and operated by Australian renewable energy company Epuron, will produce 4.9 megawatts of electricity, enough to power about 1000 homes.

The heavily contaminated site contains ash, tyres, car bodies, marine bilge oil, hydrocarbons, ­asbestos, batteries, chemical drums, mercury and lead.

About 350 people have signed a petition calling for the project to be fully assessed by the state Environmental Protection Authority.

Mother of three Helena Everkans-Smith, who lives next to the South Fremantle landfill site, said if the project went ahead she would move out with her children for months because she was worried about the potential for contaminants to become airborne during earthworks.

Residents say strong winds in the beachside area would make the situation more dangerous, ­potentially pushing contaminants towards a school. Others in the community have raised concerns about the glare from solar panels and the possible health ­effects of electromagnetic radiation.

Resident Niek van Santen said the City of Fremantle had backed the project without proper consultation and nobody knew who would be held responsible if public health was put at risk.

“Nowhere in the world has there been a solar farm in a residential area, especially not on a contaminated site,” Mr van Santen said. “I won’t put our child at risk by staying here.

“The council are trying to steamroll this project through just so they can be seen to be green.”

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt defended the council’s approval of the project and said Epuron would need to comply with a site management plan prepared by an independent consultant. The solar farm would avoid the need for site remediation, which has been estimated to cost tens of millions of dollars. “We will only do the project if it can be done safely,” he said.

The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation said it would review an updated site management plan. Epuron could not be reached for comment. However, the company has said previously that a solar farm was an ideal use for the site until longer-term remediation and development options could be delivered.




Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


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