Wednesday, October 16, 2019

So much for the dangers of radioactivity

People living in close proximity to Chernobyl are living into their '80s!  It's only very high doses of radiation that are harmful.  Low to medium doses are actually beneficial.  The people below are living evidence of that

Chernobyl: For most it's a name which conjures up images of nuclear hazmat signs, fleeing crowds, and deadly radioactive fires, as brought to life by HBO's riveting account of the deadly catastrophe broadcast earlier this year.

For others, Chernobyl simply means home.

Between 150 and 300 people remain in the Exclusion Zone, which covers  an area of approximately 1,000 square miles  around the remains of the Chernobyl nuclear plant in northern Ukraine

The Chernobyl nuclear disaster of 1986 left a ring of ghost villages as residents fled, fearing radiation poisoning. But some people - around 150-300 - refused to go.

Those living close to Chernobyl - over 100,000 people - were quickly rushed from the scene. A 20-mile exclusion zone was imposed around the damaged reactor. This was later expanded to cover more affected areas.

Over the next few months a further 234,000 people were moved out. Almost all left in a hurry. Some were given just a few hours to pack up all their belongings. Others were told they would only be gone a few days, but were never allowed back. Some simply locked their doors and waited for the fuss to die down.

Over recent years, Canadian photographer Robyn Von Swank adventured into the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Initially she expected to photograph a town full of ghosts but was surprised to find that not all have deserted the toxic zone, even though it has been deemed unfit for human habitation. Ignoring safety concerns and the fact it's actually illegal to live in the red zone, dozens of people still go about their daily lives in the shadow of the forsaken reactor.

After Robyn's first trip in 2016, she wanted to return to document those that defied the government and never left. She hired a private guide and he took her into parts of the Exclusion Zone that not many people can go to and she saw many abandoned villages.

Bizarrely, it was not the radiation that posed the biggest threat to the Canadian photographer even though thousands of people have died as a result of the nuclear disaster (estimates vary from 4,000-27,000 dead).

As Robyn was exploring one of the abandoned towns, she noticed footprints behind her and discovered that a pack of wolves were following her.

'Thankfully, the predators have a bounty of prey to eat already, because the Zone continues to grow as a biodiverse forest where animals don't worry about being killed by humans anymore,' she recalled with a smile.

Some residents survived Nazi invasion during WW2, the Chernobyl accident and Soviet rule over Ukraine. Radiation is estimated to have killed between 4,000 and 27,000 people since the disaster blast

Robyn visited the re-settlers who were all over the age of 80, except for two who were in their 50s. The Canadian arrived just in time for Russian New Year and was invited into the local's homes to enjoy a feast of cabbage rolls, pork fat, pickled mushrooms, blinis, potatoes and more Ukrainian cuisine.

'The people were warm and welcoming and spoke openly about their histories. Some sobbed when speaking of the incident, having been affected so personally,' Robyn added.

One of the residents, Maria, is the only living person in her village and is miles away from anyone else - but she will never leave her home. She survived the Nazi invasion in World War 2, the Chernobyl accident and lived under Soviet rule.

Another resident, Baba Olga was an old woman who never had any children so she had few visitors. But she once had a vibrant social life with the other residents. When Robyn left her house, Baba Olga stuffed her pockets full of candy and apples and hugged and kissed her affectionately.

Somewhat paradoxically, the population of the exclusion zone is growing. Several families have relocated to the quiet, overwhelmingly cheap neighbourhoods surrounding Chernobyl in recent years, many fleeing the war that rages between Ukraine and Russia to this day.


British police finally lose patience with Extinction Rebellion as protesters are told to stop action now or be arrested

Police have ordered climate change protesters to stop their action immediately or face arrest, in an effort to put an end to more than a week's disruption in London.

Activists with Extinction Rebellion (XR) have been told to leave Trafalgar Square, where many have congregated lawfully since Monday last week, as police seek to expunge the protesters from the capital.

More than 1,400 people have been arrested during eight days' XR action, with the threat that anyone defying police orders will also be detained.

In a statement on Twitter, the London branch of XR wrote: "Police are clearing peaceful protest in Trafalgar & Vauxhall. They are back-tracking on promises made &, MEPs say, in contravention of UK law, in the national square. "This is an emergency, and an outrage. The police must respect the law. This is a democracy."

Scotland Yard said activists were told to cease their protests by 9pm on Monday or face arrest.

XR later said in a statement that it would "let the Trafalgar Square go tonight" but added that the "International Rebellion continues".

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor said: "These conditions have been imposed due to the continued breaches of the section 14 condition previously implemented, and ongoing serious disruption to the community.

"We have made significant progress in managing Extinction Rebellion's activity at sites across central London over this past week. "Officers have begun the process of clearing Trafalgar Square and getting things back to normal.

"Today, protesters targeted areas in the City of London, causing further disruption to people and businesses in London's financial district. Police made more than 90 arrests.

"Since the beginning of this operation officers have been working hard to keep London moving. There have been more than 1,400 arrests, and a number of people have been charged.

"The policing operation continues, and we will continue to take action against anyone engaged in unlawful protests at locations targeted by Extinction Rebellion."

Four people in a so-called peace tent, who had locked themselves together, were cut out of their locks with machinery.

Pam Williams, 71, glued herself to the spot where her tent stood as police arrived to take it. Speaking to the PA news agency, she said: "Everyone on the site, despite being the only area of London that was free of the Section 14, was told at about 8.30pm that they had to leave by 9pm or they would be arrested. I just feel like that's very short notice.

"I feel possibly that they've been approached by people we've upset today, maybe the finance sector or the banking sector.

"I'm refusing to leave and I've glued myself to the ground. My husband has taken away the tent, the police haven't got it. I shall stay here until I'm arrested."


New York Times Former Reporter: Toss ‘Climate Troglodytes’ Like Trump, Inhofe Out of Office

In his days as an environment reporter, Gillis got heaps of feedback from skeptics so he knows he is backing a fraud

The latest New York Times Sunday Review was graced by Justin Gillis, who served as chief environmental reporter for the paper until late 2017 and is now a contributing opinion writer free to spout in even more partisan and hysterical tones about the “troglodytes” and dangerous deniers who don’t see impending climate catastrophe: “Our Climate Future Has Arrived.”

The text box? “We ignored warnings of wildfires, flooding, heat waves and rising oceans.” He also loved teenaged climate activist Greta Thunberg.

The online headline deck was a call to vote Democrat: “Fire, Floods and Power Outages: Our Climate Future Has Arrived -- The most urgent imperative now is to turn our fear and frustration into votes.” The tone was confidently alarmist (click "expand"):

Now we suffer the consequences.

In Northern California, power was cut to more than a million people this week. Near Houston, houses that flooded only two years ago just succumbed again. The South endured record-shattering fall heat waves. In Miami, salt water bubbled through street drains yet again as the rising ocean mounted a fresh assault.

All of it was predicted, in general outline, decades ago. We did not listen. Ideologues and paid shills cajoled us to ignore the warnings. Politicians cashed their checks from the fossil fuel lobbyists and slithered away.

Today, we act surprised as the climate emergency descends upon us in all its ferocity.


As tempting as it is to blame the politicians and the fossil fuel executives for the fix we find ourselves in, that is too easy. At any time in these last three decades, we could have woken up. We could have heeded the warnings of scientists like James E. Hansen of NASA, who told Congress in 1988 that the planet was warming sharply and would continue to do so if we persisted in burning fossil fuels. We could have voted James Inhofe, the climate-denying senator from Oklahoma, out of office. Had we been aroused and angry, we could have wielded our democratic power to bring the fossil fuel companies to heel.

I remember sitting with Dr. Hansen in his NASA office the week he retired, in 2013, wondering along with him when the public revolt over the climate crisis would finally begin.

Now we have our answer. Under the unlikely leadership of a brave 16-year-old schoolgirl from Sweden, Greta Thunberg, we are marching in the streets now by the millions. We are making demands. We are angry, and should be, but let’s spare a moment to be angry at ourselves for waiting so long.

People keep asking: Is it too late?

Yes, in some sense it is. What the events in California and Miami and Houston tell us is that we are living through the risks of an altered climate now, not a hundred years from now. Expect the situation to keep getting worse for the rest of your life. The ocean will keep rising for centuries, probably much faster than today. We will lose our great coastal cities.

Gillis pivoted to voting Democrat and was unctuously servile toward "schoolgirl" Greta Thunberg:

The most urgent imperative now is to turn our fear and frustration into votes.

The climate troglodytes must be thrown out of office, starting with Donald J. Trump. We need laws with teeth to propel the clean energy transition: hard targets, bans, taxes, mandates. We cannot stand back for another presidential election in which the Republican Party lies about this issue while the Democratic Party hides from it.

Granted, “Curtail future damage!” is not an inspiring battle cry. “To the Bastille!” it is not. Yet millions of young people have begun to understand the stakes, their fears given voice by that young lady from Sweden, with her moral intelligence and her capacity to wield the truth like a rapier.

Gillis also appeared in the paper in June 2018 to mark the 30th anniversary of NASA scientist and climate scold James Hansen’s jeremiad to Congress on global warming (now “climate change”). The Cato Institute checked up on Hansen’s predictions and came away less than impressed.


Andrew Neil Interviews Extinction Rebellion

Andrew Neil is a BBC TV journalist.  He is interviewing a woman named "Zion Lights"

Transcript summary:

Andrew Neil: I’ve seen some of your activists claims on TV that billions of people are going to die in quite short order. One of your founders Roger Hallam said “Our children are going to die in the next ten to twenty years. What’s the scientific basis for these claims?

Extinction Rebellion: So, these claims have been disputed, admittedly. There are some scientists who are agreeing and some who are saying they’re simply not true but the overall issue is that these deaths are going to happen. We don’t know exactly the numbers and it’s a little bit concerning to focus on just how many deaths. There will be deaths and mass suffering and any amount is enough as far as we are concerned.

Andrew Neil: But most scientists don’t agree with this. Climate change scientists, those who know and say there is a problem and it has to be tackled, things have to be done, and more has to be done that is being done. I looked through the IPCC AR5 and SR15 and I see no reference to billions of people are going to die. or children are going to die in under 20 years.

Extinction Rebellion: We don’t claim that what we said was derived from the IPCC AR5 or the SR15
Andrew Neil: Then where does the scientific validity of that claim come from? The billions of people that will die, how will they die?

Extinction Rebellion: Mass migration around the world is already taking place due to prolonged drought in South Asia. There are wildfires in Indonesia, the Amazon rain forest, Siberia, and the Arctic.

Andrew Neil: These are all really important problems and they can cause fatalities but they don’t cause billions of deaths. They don’t imply that our young people will all be dead in 20 years, as your co-founder Roger Hallam claims.

Extinction Rebellion: Perhaps not in 20 years, but I can’t speak to what Roger was meaning with that. He is indeed one of the members of Extinction Rebellion.

Andrew Neil: You talk about weather related disasters, and people die from them but a hundred years ago,  weather related disasters killed 500,000 people a year on average. Today that figure is 20,000 a year, a reduction of 96%. These numbers don’t support the Extinction Rebellion claim about the death of billions of people by climate change.

Extinction Rebellion: I think there is a danger of scaring people simply because we’re not taking it seriously enough and people are feeling desperately that we are heard on this and it is unfortunate that this language works which is why we are discussing it right now.

Andrew Neil: It doesn’t work. I have seen school strike young girls on TV crying because they think they are going to die in 5 or 6 years. Crying because they don’t think they will ever see adulthood. And yet there is no scientific basis for the claims your organization is making.

Extinction Rebellion: The young people I have spoken with aren’t  crying because they are going to die in a few years; it’s because they don’t see their generation as having a future and they worry about coastal regions going under water, entire countries, island nations going under water, the Maldives going under water, the mass displacement that is happening, the weather extremes, which may be on a downward trajectory but climate scientists ARE telling us that they will be on the increase,

Andrew Neil: As for rising seas, yes, sea levels are rising. The IPCC makes that quite clear. The IPCC says that its median projection is for sea level rise of half a meter by the year 2100 and that will surely create problems from Miami to Bangladesh but half a meter of sea level rise will not result in the apocalyptic predictions your organization claims.

Extinction Rebellion: These are very conservative numbers. I am not criticizing scientists. They do an incredible job. But a lot of their data are using pre-industrial levels of data. They are looking at carbon emissions but nor factoring in feedback loops. Things like that. All climate scientists are saying now that they think it’s a lo worse. James Hansen, ex NASA scientist is saying we are in a planetary emergency. So we’re using that language. We are not trying to use alarmist language. We are listening to what scientists are saying and using language that we feel is appropriate to the situation.

Andrew Neil: You ARE using alarmist language. A person from your organization has said that nearly everybody could be dead within several decades. 97% was the figure she put on it. The IPCC wants emissions to be cut in half by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2050. But your organization wants net zero emissions by 2025, only six years away. What would that require?

Extinction Rebellion: I am not here to give you solutions and to tell you what we should be doing. That’s not …. (interrupted by Neil)

Andrew Neil: But you went to Westminster to preach and demand climate policy!

Extinction Rebellion: We are saying, listen to the experts. Listen to what their ideas are, what they are saying, and at the moment we are not putting those plans in place, we are not creating policies that reflect what these scientists are saying. This is why we are protesting.

Andrew Neil: The experts have consensus on getting to net zero emissions by 2050. But you’re saying 2025.

Extinction Rebellion: There has been some interesting research into the IPCC reports that is more recent. This research was carried out by Professor Michael Mann who looked at where they come up with the 2050 figure and actually they are relying on carbon capture by gas energy storage. There is a problem with that. It is an untested technology and by relying on that there is a 50-50 chance that we will fail with the 50-50 target.

Andrew Neil: So you are relying on an individual against the main body of climate science represented by the IPCC. In any case, one scenario of your 2025 plan is that it will require the confiscation of all petrol cars, state rationing of meat, and limiting families to one flight every 5 years. Do you agree with that?

Extinction Rebellion: I agree that we need to do whatever it takes to bring emissions down, to allow young people to have a future, to be able to have some hope for the future. I am not saying that because we are alarmists. I am listening to what they are saying. They are learning about the consequences of climate change at school and they are worrying about …. (interrupted by Neil).

Andrew Neil: I am not arguing about the consequences of climate change at all. But to reach your target you would have to stop all flights. Aviation will come to an end.

Extinction Rebellion: Possibly. This is something we need to look at. We need to look at the aviation industry. We need to do an analysis of what needs to happen. In all industries; agriculture, energy, everything. I don’t claim to be an expert in these areas.

Andrew Neil: If we stopped all flights it would global temperature by 0.03C. And you would stop all flights for that?

Extinction Rebellion: But what you just said was the IPCC report we both are in agreement we listen to that 99% consensus science. That’s great. We agree with that. That report is saying that if we don’t bring emissions down …. (interrupted by Neil)

Andrew Neil: Most homes are heated by gas. Most people cook with gas. All of that would have to go in 6 years for a 2025 target.

Extinction Rebellion: We put a man on the moon before we had the internet and mobile phones. We made and international space station. Sixteen countries worked together to make it happen, and send the parts into space independently using math and assemble it in space. With Dr. James Hansen, an ex NASA scientist, calling it a planetary emergency, if we really want to tackle this emergency, we can do it just like we could put a man on the moon and build the space station. We had 30 years to tackle this emergency and we didn’t do it. We are now out of time. We no longer have time to do this the comfortable way. We must do it the hard way.


Vancouver has ‘coldest Oct. 10 in 123 years’ as temperatures tumble across B.C.

If high temperatures in Sydney are news why are low temperatures in Vancouver not news?

Environment Canada says the temperature at Vancouver International Airport dipped to 0.7 C Monday morning. “That’s the coldest Oct. 10 in 123 years, so this is pretty significant,” said Environment Canada meteorologist Matt MacDonald.

It was the second record in two days for Vancouver, which saw thermometers dip to 0.8 C Wednesday, wiping out the old record of 2.8, which had stood since 1960.

Vancouver has coldest Oct. 9 in nearly 60 years
The weather office says clear skies and a cold front helped set several other winter-like records across B.C.

“We’ve broken a total of 41 temperature records across B.C. in the last 2 days,” said MacDonald.

Those include a mark of -10.3 C in Clinton on Wednesday, breaking a 2009 record, and -8.2 C in Smithers, smashing the old record set in 1959.

The average historical low for Vancouver in the second week of October is 7 C.


Australia: Disabled man said he was heckled and abused by Extinction Rebellion protesters

A revealing testimony to the low character of Warmists.  You can see how "caring" they really are

A disabled man claims he was heckled and abused by Extinction Rebellion protesters who blocked his way as he was trying to cross the street.

Matthew Zammit said he was disrupted by the protests while in Melbourne and tried to raise his concerns with activists, but was met with abuse and was called offensive names.

Climate change protesters descended on major cities across Australia last week with a week of demonstrations around the country.

Dozens showed up in Melbourne to occupy the steps of Parliament while hundreds more marched through the CBD while others camped in Melbourne's Carlton Gardens.

In a question submitted to the ABC program Q&A, Mr Zammit said it was particularly difficult for him to go about his day in Melbourne due to his disability. 

'I've been heavily disrupted by the protests last week. Many people have. But as somebody with a few disabilities it hits people like me harder,' he said.

He said he tried to raise his concerns with protesters when his bus was blocked as there were people chained to the tram tracks.

'I already had to walk with my crutch much more than usual that morning, when I attempted to speak with them on one side of the street I was jeered at and called offensive names,' Mr Zammit said. 'I struggled to the other side of the street and had fruitless arguments with protesters there.'

While Mr Zammit acknowledged that climate change was a serious issue, he asked the panel about the balance between the rights of people with disabilities and the right to protest.

Victorian Liberal MP Tim Wilson said Mr Zammit had also contacted him about his experience with the protesters. 'He's been deliberately instructed and put in extreme hardship as a consequence of their behaviour and they completely disregarded that,' Mr Wilson said in regards to the protesters.

Mr Wilson said that the protesters go about their own detriment which frustrates people trying to live their life. 'They have a right to have their voice heard and express their opinion and a right to associate and come together and protest that but if they have a right to shut down everybody's life in the process is going too far,' he said.

Labor MP Tim Watts said protesters should be listening to Mr Zammit's concerns and believes they need to accommodate for people with disabilities.



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.  

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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