Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Current U.S. floods are needlesly wasting valuable water

Some current headlines: Record floods affect Midwest states; Louisiana floods one of the worst recent US disasters; Torrential Rain Slams Parts of East Coast with Historic Flooding; Flooding from melting snow overwhelms Midwest; At Least 20 Dead in Historic West Virginia Flooding; Massive Flooding and Torrential Rain Slam Central Texas, Again

By David Wojick

Our National Environmental Policy is to let nature take its course and that is exactly what is happening with this catastrophic flooding. Blame Congress, not climate change. The dams that would stop this flooding were designed in the 1960’s but they were never built because of the 1970 National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). It is that simple. We are flooding ourselves.

The colossal irony is that a lot of this flooding is in drought prone places. So the water that is hurting us is actually very valuable, if we could store it, which is just what dams do. We are flooding ourselves with valuable water. How stupid is that?

I am reading the news coverage of this terrible tragedy and there is not the slightest hint that it was preventable, which it most surely was. And I am not referring to getting people out of the way by prohibiting living where floods can occur, which is the absurd green solution. We know how to stop these floods, we are just not doing it.

It is not a matter of building monster dams on major rivers. On the contrary it means building a lot of small to medium sized dams on the many tributaries the feed these big rivers. Catch and hold the water in small amounts over a large area, releasing it slowly, even usefully, as in irrigation and hydro power.

By pure coincidence I was there when the U.S. Flood Control Program was killed. As a junior civil engineer I was working my way through graduate school in philosophy of science by helping to design the needed dams.

But NEPA said that we were to minimize “environmental impact.” As it happens, stopping destructive floods is a major environmental impact, a good one in my view, but we were basically barred from interfering with the floods. We were messing with nature and that was now prohibited. I am not making this up.

I am pretty sure that the people who wanted to protect nature, whatever that means, did not think they were protecting destructive floods, but that is what happened. Or maybe some of them did understand that. After all, the green answer to floods is to get out of the way, right? Let the waters roll.

We were denounced as “public enemy number one” by Supreme Court Justice Douglas, in Playboy Magazine no less. This may not sound like much today but the greens were just getting started on their quest for world domination and it hit hard at the time. Senior engineers that I greatly respected quit in disgrace after many decades of service.

The point is that these awful floods do not have to happen. I cannot say it simpler than that. We know how to stop these floods and we can use the water when we do. We are flooding ourselves in valuable water.


Mike Hulme speaks out

One way in which the climate debate has changed in the last year or so is the emergence of a kind of “climate death cult”. This was always there in the background (see this comment from Andy West on my previous post) but recently has come into the mainstream media, with widespread talk of “extinction” and bogus claims of an “emergency“.

The latest example is a “paper” by two Australian members of the death cult, saying that there’s a good chance of human civilisation coming to end. Needless to say, these two con-men, David Spratt and Ian Dunlop, are both cashing on the cult with books to sell, and of course the UK media is giving them huge publicity and raising no questions.

But what is perhaps even worse is the response – or lack of – from the climate science community. As far as I am aware, not a single UK climate scientist has explicitly called out this bullshit, even though David Rose has specifically asked them about it. One of those Rose asked is promoting his vacuous graphics, while another seems to be too busy attacking Donald Trump.

I have found one climate scientist, Ryan Maue, who seems to care about disinformation being fed to the public and is prepared to call it out. What a pity that we don’t have any climate scientists with courage and integrity here in the UK.

So let’s hear it for Mike Hulme, formerly a climate scientist at UEA, but now working on the sociology and politics side of things in the Geography Department at Cambridge. He’s a man of conscience, honesty and integrity, who wrote a very good book called Why we disagree about climate change, where, for example, he acknowledges that his own political views influenced his views on climate change.

Hulme has written an article on his blog, Am I a denier, a human extinction denier? As well as challenging the extinction/emergency narrative, he plays with the ‘denier’ label. Below are a couple of excerpts, but please go to his site and read his whole article.

"There has been a lot of talk recently about climate change and extinction.

It is undoubtedly the case that species go extinct.  And sometimes large numbers of species disappear together in mass events caused by the same physical stresses.  It is also true that at some point in the future the human species will go extinct, or at the least evolve into a new species partly of our own making.

Yet I resist the current mood of ‘extinctionism’ which pervades the new public discourse around climate change.  Talking about the future in this way is counter-productive.  And it does a disservice to development, justice, peace-making and humanitarian projects being undertaken around the world today.

A denier is a person who denies something, “… who refuses to admit the truth of a concept or proposition that is supported by the majority of scientific or historical evidence.”  If I do not believe that climate change will drive the human species to extinction, does that make me an extinction denier?  For I do not believe that there is good scientific or historical evidence that climate change will lead to human extinction…

This rise in extinction rhetoric in (largely) English-speaking societies over the past 12 months is in part linked to the IPCC’s Special Report on 1.5C Warming published last October.  The slogan “we have only 12 years left” has somehow been extracted from this Report and feeds the rise of climate clocks such as this one from the Human Impact Lab in Montreal.  But the IPCC Report offers neither scientific nor historical evidence for human extinction.

From this extinction fear arises the “panic” that Greta Thunberg has called for.  Panic demands a response and one response is to declare an emergency.  ‘Climate emergencies’ are now being declared in jurisdictions ranging from universities, the British Parliament and several local authorities in the UK.

But the rhetoric of extinction and emergency does not adequately describe the situation we find ourselves in.  Declaring a climate emergency implies the possibility of time-limited radical and decisive action that can end the emergency.  But climate change is not like this.  The historical trajectory of human expansion, western imperialism and technological development has created climate change as a new condition of human existence rather than as a path to extinction."


British weirdness

Seriously attempting the impossible at great cost

Having failed miserably to render the United Kingdom as a colony of the EU via her white flag surrender treaty, aka the Withdrawal Agreement, Theresa May is now seemingly intent on securing her poisonous, destructive legacy by alternative means.

According to the Financial Times, she intends to introduce legislation via a statutory instrument obliging Britain to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050, instead of the 80% reduction required by law in the Climate Change Act 2008. The recommendation, offered up by the lunatics at the Committee on Climate Change, will cost the UK at least £50 billion a year, 1 billion pounds a week. The ‘ambitious’ target would require heating to be almost entirely decarbonised, leaving households having to replace gas boilers with alternatives such as heat pumps, which cost “three times more”, significant changes to farming practices and a total ban on petrol and diesel cars by 2050, along with a tenfold increase in electric charging points. Homeowners would also need to spend thousands or tens of thousands of pounds on insulation. This is according to a letter sent to May by Phillip Hammond, the Chancellor. Hammond also advises that unless other countries follow suit, then “key industries” – such as the steel industry – would become economically uncompetitive or dependent on permanent government support.

But the Maybot Dancing Queen Brexit Terminator is apparently very keen to introduce the legislation:

Mrs May, whose tenure as prime minister will end next month, is hoping the carbon emissions legislation will be one of her most important legacies after she leaves office.

Liz Truss, chief secretary to the Treasury, recently urged Number 10 to hold off on the decision until a new prime minister is in place.

However, it is understood that Mrs May is set to introduce the legislation by June 11, according to Whitehall officials. This would require her to introduce a “statutory instrument”, a form of secondary legislation, to tweak the existing 2008 Climate Change Act.

Just when you thought Britain’s worst ever Prime Minister couldn’t get even worse and inflict even more damage upon the country she has pretended to lead for three years. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, the leadership front-runner, Boris Johnson, has apparently gone Green loco too by promising to do exactly the same thing if he becomes PM:


Debunked: Temperature records defy attempt to blame Japan heat wave on global warming

Climate alarmists have published a paper claiming record high temperatures in Japan last July “would never have happened” without global warming. A media article summarizing the paper and its claim appeared at the very top of a Google News search for “global warming” on May 30. The claim, however, is refuted by recorded temperature data.

The authors of the alarmist paper devised a computer model that concluded a summer heat wave would have almost no chance of getting as hot as last July’s Japan heat wave in the absence of global warming. The model did not rule out that natural extreme summer heat waves could occur, and found natural factors were a significant factor in the July 2018 heat wave. However, the model was programmed to add an extra layer of heat, due to global warming, to summer heat waves.

Alarmists can always add 1 degree Celsius – or whatever their latest claim is regarding the extent of human-caused global warming – to any temperature record and claim global warming is responsible. For a high-temperature record, alarmists can tack on that 1 degree Celsius and claim the full extent of the high temperature record would not have occurred without global warming. But historical temperature records defy that simple, lazy approach.

Climate scientist John Christy showed in 2016 congressional testimony that the number of high temperature records in the United States peaked in the 1930s and has been steadily declining ever since. It would be an amazing coincidence if U.S. high temperature trends somehow defied global trends for all of the past 80 years. Indeed, scientists with the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change have shown little or no evidence for any increasing frequency of summer temperature records globally.

Anthropogenic global warming theory itself predicts that most of the temperature impact of human-caused warming will occur during winter and in nighttime temperatures. As a result, the lazy practice of adding 1 degree Celsius to all summer high temperatures should really be adding just a fraction of 1 degree Celsius if people want to take that lazy route. However, objective data show the frequency of high temperature records has declined or, at worst, remained unaffected since the early 20th century. So claiming global warming must have been responsible for Japan’s July 2018 high temperature records defies objective data trends.


Science’s Untold Scandal: Professional Societies’ Sell Out on Climate Change

When we started our careers, it was considered an honor to be a member of professional societies that helped practitioners keep up with the latest developments in their fields through relevant meetings and publications. Senior author Dr. Jay Lehr had the privilege of leading one of these societies long ago.

But things are different now. Whether it be chemistry, physics, geology or engineering, many of the world’s primary professional societies have changed from being paragons of technical virtue to opportunistic groups focused on maximizing their members’ financial gains in support of the climate scare, the world’s greatest science fraud.

In particular, they continue to promote the groundless hypothesis that carbon dioxide emitted as a result of mankind’s use of fossil fuels is leading to environmental catastrophe. You have been hearing about it for the past decade and more, with 21 candidates for the Democratic nomination for the presidency in the next election promoting some form of a Green New Deal—a plan to eliminate the use of fossil fuels and replace them with wind and solar power thereby returning society to the lifestyle of the 1880s.

Dr. Patrick Moore, a co-founder of Greenpeace, wrote in 1994 that radical greens had taken over the organization after the fall of the Berlin Wall, leaving him no choice but to resign. The takeover of environmental institutions by extremists is now almost complete, the most important of which may be the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

President Donald Trump is aggressively trying to win back the EPA in the best interests of the nation, but it is an uphill battle as the climate cult has also taken control of academia, political parties, and governments themselves.

An example of how professional societies have apparently been hijacked by extremists concerns the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta, Canada (APEGA). Allan MacRae, a prominent long-time member of APEGA, was named to receive its most distinguished lifetime achievement award in 2019.

Then APEGA staff learned that MacRae had written publicly about the damage done to humanity and the environment by radical greens. APEGA leadership strongly condemned his comments and his award was withdrawn. It led MacRae to write “Hypothesis: Radical Greens are the Great Killers of Our Age,” which explains the APEGA award withdrawal and to support his contention that radical greens have done enormous harm to humanity and the environment with their destructive, misguided policies. MacRae writes, “APEGA refused to discuss the evidence, and baselessly claimed the moral high ground.”

One commenter responding to MacRae’s essay posed a question, the answer to which tells an important story: “How did the Greens get control of APEGA?” Another commenter answered:

The same way they have taken over every other professional organization.  The actual members are too busy building their careers and actually working in the field to spend much time worrying about the day to day operation of the organization. As a result, they are taken over by lawyers and activists whose interest is in pushing their own agenda, not advancing science for humanity.

Another reader commented:

“The long march through the Institutions” as proposed by the Frankfurt school back in the 1930s was launched knowing it would be a generations long policy. Here we are three generations on and they have now taken control of all the western institutions as planned. The socialists do not stop just because their prime construct, the USSR failed in 1990. They regard that failure as simply work in progress. The climate as a tool which can never be tamed, was a genuine piece of strategic genius by the COGS (constantly offended green socialists). They will not stop. The destruction of humanity is too big a prize, they view this activity as pressing the Earth’s reset button.

The same thing is happening in the United States, where feathers were really ruffled at the American Physical Society (APS) when Dr. Hal Lewis, emeritus professor of Physics at the University of California, sent his resignation letter to the Society after being a member for 67 years.

In his letter, he described the joy of working with brilliant physicists for decades, when no one expected to get rich in this field. Lewis explained how studies done within the society had effective oversight that enabled members to stake their reputations on the work of the organization. He said that has all now changed.

Open dialogue has disappeared and all organization policies follow the new politics of the organization leadership rather than the membership. It is apparently focused on the money that accrues to the organization and its members by going along with popular concerns.

Lewis’ letter can be found here. A telling quote from that letter follows:

It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave.  It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone that has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents which lay it bare.

Lewis went on to state that he recruited over 200 members of APS to oppose the new APS policy that fully supports the global warming fraud. Their request for a hearing on the issue was completely ignored.

On March 31, 2019, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) issued a press release announcing the launch of The Climate Solutions Community, a broad committee to identify viable solutions to mitigate, adapt, and become resilient to the effects of climate change.

They totally buy into the dangerous man-made climate change hypothesis with no consideration of alternative points of view. AIChE’s description of their efforts highlight the fact that employment can be gained for their members as a result of the climate scare.

The Geological Society of America (GSA) has fallen into the same trap. In April 2015, GSA issued a Position Statement asserting that:

Human activities (mainly greenhouse-gas emissions) are the dominant cause of the rapid warming since the middle 1900s (IPCC, 2013). If the upward trend in greenhouse-gas concentrations continues, the projected global climate change by the end of the twenty first century will result in significant impacts on humans and other species.

The GSA backs up the statement with vague evidence from paleoclimates and offers their full support for the reports of the widely discredited United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

As is evident from the process described on the GSA Position Statement FAQs web page, the full membership of GSA is not polled after the development of Position Statements. Consequently, it is unknown what fraction of the membership actually support the final statement. However, clearly, GSA leadership recognize that such a position offers employment to many of their members trained in geology.

The lockstep march of professional societies in support of climate alarmism has been going on for years. For example, fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (RSC) and a leading Canadian energy expert, the late “Archie” Robertson of Deep River, Ontario, explained in the April 28, 2006, edition of the National Post what happened in Canada:

To claim that the IPCC-2001 assessment was “supported by the Royal Society of Canada” is stretching the truth. Prior to last year’s Montreal conference, the president of the Royal Society of London, whose manner of promoting Kyoto has been criticized, drafted a resolution in favour and circulated it to other academies of science inviting co-signing. The Canadian Academy of Science is one of three academies within the Royal Society of Canada (the other are from the humanities). The president of the RSC, not a member of the Academy of Science, received the invitation. He considered it consistent with the position of the great majority of scientists, as repeatedly but erroneously claimed by Kyoto proponents, and so signed it. The resolution was not referred to the Academy of Science for comment, not even to its council or president (I learned this when, as a member of the Academy of Science, I inquired into the basis for the RSC supporting the resolution).

A similar episode happened in the United States and Russia concerning The Royal Society initiative. Pronouncements from other science bodies are often just the opinions of the groups’ executives or committees specifically appointed by the executive. The rank and file scientist members are rarely consulted at all.

Past IPCC lead author Dr. Richard Lindzen, professor emeritus of the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology,  explained the problems with a previous National Academy of Sciences report here and concluded: “there is no consensus, unanimous or otherwise, about long-term climate trends and what causes them.”

All of this seriously damages the image of these once-respected professional societies in the eyes of both the public and the membership.

The climate cult that has taken over the environmental movement has never been about the environment. It has always been a mechanism to advance socialism, grow government, reduce individual rights, reduce human population, and ignore the human suffering and environmental damage their policies cause. Activists promoting this anti-human, anti-environment agenda appear to suffer emotional and psychological problems which they seem to deal with by attempting to make others miserable.

On April 27, 1961, at a speech in New York City, President John F. Kennedy said:

We are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence – on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations.

Those words describe socialism, a system sold as Utopia. It appears that a yearning for Utopia never dies, because it springs from innate spiritual qualities of humanity. But as we have seen in every instance of national-scale socialist “Utopias” such as Cuba, China, Russia, and Venezuela, the result is inevitably suffering, scarcity, environmental degradation, oppression, and death. Truth, reason, and logic are the first values sacrificed along the way. Professional Societies must stop supporting it.



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