Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Leading maker of electric cars still not green enough

Elon Musk evidently has a diabolical view of environmental, social and corporate governance – more commonly referred to as “ESG.”

His comments came in response to a Sunday Twitter post from small business expert and advisor Carol Roth.

“Remember when @ElonMusk wanted to bring free speech to Twitter and then S&P removed Tesla from their ESG 500 index, but kept in Exxon?” Roth wrote. “ESG is business social credit. It’s a means to control capital, keep business people in line with the narrative, and, ultimately, control you.”

In characteristically brief fashion, Musk responded: “ESG is the devil.”

ESG refers to non-financial standards used by asset managers and investors in financial decision-making. ESG investing is sometimes referred to as sustainable investing or impact investing, and investors can use ESG standards and criteria to screen potential investments and monitor non-financial risks.

Earlier this year, Tesla was removed from the S&P 500’s ESG index. S&P Dow Jones Indices’ senior director and head of ESG indices Margaret Dorn said in a May blog post that Tesla was no longer eligible for inclusion in the index because its S&P DPJ ESG score had fallen into the bottom 25% of its global industry group peers despite remaining “fairly stable” year over year.

Factors that contributed to Tesla’s lower score include its lack of “low carbon energy and codes of business conduct.”

“While Tesla may be playing its part in taking fuel-powered cars off the road, it has fallen behind its peers when examined through a wider ESG lens,” Dorn said.


Biden’s Dirty Deal for Venezuelan Oil

We don’t have a lot of friends in South America these days. And with Joe Biden’s sneaky scheme to buy oil from Venezuela’s scummy socialists while stifling the production of light sweet crude from little Guyana, an erstwhile ally in the region, we now have one fewer.

“Washington policy makers occasionally make miscalculations that help American enemies, undermine development in a poor country, or harm U.S. economic interests,” writes The Wall Street Journal’s Latin American expert Mary Anastasia O'Grady. “But to nail the trifecta requires a special blend of ideological blindness and incompetence that is mercifully rare. Still, as the administration’s treatment of Guyana demonstrates, it does happen.”

It’s not just that the Venezuelan regime has a history of anti-Americanism, which former dictator Hugo Chavez bequeathed to the nation’s current strongman, Nicolás Maduro. And it’s not just that the Biden administration, by allowing Chevron to resume drilling in Venezuela, has reversed restrictions that the Trump administration had put in place in an effort to oust the illegitimately elected Maduro. No, Venezuela is also cozy with the “Death to America” mullahs of Iran.

We’ll say this about Joe Biden: He sure knows how to pick ‘em. And he sure knows how to put one over on the American people. As O'Grady explains:

The U.S. government thinks you’re a fool, dear reader. And not only because it waited until Americans were en route to grandma’s house for Thanksgiving to let news slip of a deal to increase heavy-crude output from joint ventures controlled by a dictatorship allied with Iran. Or that it expects you to believe that Venezuela is considering a return to free elections in exchange.

What does the U.S. get out of all this? Precious little, according to former Trump economist Stephen Moore: “This is the same administration … that won’t allow us to do drilling here in the United States, not in Texas, not in Oklahoma, not in Alaska, not in West Virginia. But we can pump oil from Venezuela. It makes absolutely no sense. It’s put America last energy policy they got. And by the way … when Trump left office and I helped Trump on energy policy, our whole policy was to make America totally energy independent, so we wouldn’t have to rely on countries like Venezuela and Iran and Russia.”

And yet here we are. Helping to prop up a dictatorship whose citizens were recently reduced to scavenging for morsels in the back of a garbage truck, and chasing and stoning to death a cow in a field.

Fox New’s Peter Doocy put the question to Biden talkinghead John Kirby yesterday: “Does the President think there’s some benefit to the climate to drill oil in Venezuela and not here?”

As for little Guyana, what a missed opportunity. Exxon Mobil discovered an abundance of oil in its offshore waters in 2015, and Guyana’s estimated reserves are now more than 11 billion oil-equivalent barrels. To put this in perspective, only Kuwait has more oil per capita.

“The story gets even better,” as O'Grady writes, “because the crude under Guyanese waters has low sulfur content, the opposite of the tar that comes out of Venezuela. It would be hard to dream up a more exciting narrative for a country mired in poverty.”

But, no, let’s instead do business with a guy we’ve been trying to oust for years.

None of this would’ve happened, of course, had the U.S. simply tapped into its own abundant energy reserves rather than getting ourselves over a barrel with South American socialists. Instead, Joe Biden has stiffed a friend and thereby invited the Communist Chinese into the picture. As O'Grady reports, China “is aggressively signing contracts to build infrastructure in Guyana and getting in on the oil boom.”

All while the U.S. is buying dirty crude from people who hate us.

Good to go, Joe.


Britain doubles coal imports to head off winter energy crisis

Rising gas prices resulting from the war in Ukraine have forced the UK to nearly double its coal imports in the fight to keep the lights on through the Winter.

The increasing use of coal-generated power in the UK comes after years of the country shifting to cleaner electricity from gas-fired power plants and renewables, but is deemed vital as Russian president Vladimir Putin crimps gas supplies to Europe.

Figures from Kpler, a commodity analytics firm, show that last month more than 560,000 tonnes of coal came into British ports, compared to the 291,089 tonnes that arrived in October 2021, a 93 per cent increase.

In the first 10 months of this year, the UK imported more than 5.5 million tonnes of coal, already exceeding the 4.2 million tonnes throughout the whole of 2021.

Victor Katona, senior analyst at Kpler said increased demand for coal is because of the rising price of wholesale gas. “Absent the option of burning fuel oil - the most cost-efficient power generation option right now - coal- is very much the best option out there, albeit the most polluting one, too.

“With gas prices like these, relying on natural gas for power generation is a no-go zone for anyone who can switch between fuels.”


Barrier Reef in danger? The fight’s on again as Australian government prepares to lobby UN

Australia faces its second fight in less than two years to prevent the Great Barrier Reef from being ­declared “in danger” by the UN, as Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek prepares to lobby her global counterparts against the move and scientists say the reef is improving.

The expert panel of the ­UNESCO World Heritage Committee has released a report recommending the reef be placed on a list of World Heritage sites in danger as it faces risk from climate change and degrading water quality from agricultural run-off.

Farmers within the Great Barrier Reef catchment area have warned they will lobby hard against any extra regulations after the report recommended a ­reduction in run-off from banana and sugarcane farming.

Ms Plibersek faces a battle to stave off a formal ruling when the report is considered at the meeting of the World Heritage Committee in mid-2023. Having recently met with UNESCO director-general Audrey Azoulay in Lisbon, she will speak with her international counterparts at global environmental talks in Montreal next month.

The Australian understands Ms Plibersek is prepared to lobby hard if a formal proposal to place the reef “in danger” is made.

Ms Plibersek and her Queensland counterpart, Meaghan Scanlon, sought to distance themselves from the report’s findings, arguing they were the result of the former Coalition government’s failure to act on climate change.

“The reason that UNESCO in the past has singled out a place as ‘at risk’ is because they wanted to see greater government investment or greater government action – and since the change of government, both of those things have happened,” she said.

“We’ll clearly make the point to UNESCO that there is no need to single the Great Barrier Reef out in this way.”

Former Coalition environment minister Sussan Ley only last year successfully fended off an attempt downgrade the health status of the reef. She flew to Europe last July to directly lobby World Heritage Council members.

Steve Edmondson, a reef tour operator in Port Douglas, said the UN-backed report relied on old ­information gathered during a monitoring mission in March while the reef was going through a mass coral bleaching event.

“I don’t think it considers that there are a lot of positive things that have happened in the past year,” he said. “The reef is in excellent condition at the moment and that’s what our guests are experiencing every day.

“It’s actually doing better than it has done for a very, very long time. It is fragile, but I do feel ­encouraged by the resilience of the Great Barrier Reef.”

An August report from the commonwealth’s chief independent marine science agency found the northern and central parts of the reef have the highest amounts of coral for 36 years, ­despite another bleaching episode earlier this year.




Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Britain’s energy cost crisis and the Mad Hatter’s Tea-Party of Westminster

Responding to the front-page news that Boris Johnson and Liz Truss are both supporting the lifting of the so-called “ban” on onshore wind in the UK, Net Zero Watch today described the Westminster energy debate as a “rationality-free zone”.

Since becoming Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has, against logic and all evidence, re-imposed the ban on exploring the vast potential of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas and oil in the UK, a thermodynamically competent fuel that could reinforce UK security of supply and, by giving UK markets a domestic option, reduce the price of imported gas. His chancellor, Mr Hunt, has imposed a windfall tax on energy companies, including those that Britain needs most such as oil, gas and nuclear, that will discourage investment for decades unless it is swiftly reversed.

The Prime Minister’s critics within his own party are no better. Led by Simon Clarke MP, but now joined by the ex-Prime Ministers, Johnson and Truss, some Conservatives are supporting a renewed drive for onshore wind, apparently believing the absurd industry propaganda claims that wind power is cheap. As is well known in the markets, but not apparently understood at all in Westminster, wind both on and offshore is extremely expensive, with stubbornly high capital costs and rising operational costs, to say nothing of system management costs to address its uncontrollable variability.

Meanwhile, the Opposition front bench, notionally led by Sir Keir Starmer, but in fact driven by the radical views of Ed Miliband, are promising to nationalise the energy sector and call it GB Energy, freeze energy bills and pay for the cost by taxes on oil and gas companies, while quadrupling offshore wind (to about 40 GW, up from 11 operational today) and doubling onshore wind (up to 28 GW from 14 operational today).

Dr John Constable, NZW’s Director of Energy, said:

"The intellectual quality of the UK energy policy debate is a disgrace to parliament, revealing both the ignorance and folly of elected representatives. Like Alice in Wonderland it is utterly surreal nonsense; but, unlike Lewis Carroll’s masterpiece, it isn’t funny. The British people deserve better."


Dr John Constable


Green Europe: VW warns soaring energy costs render battery plants unviable

Investment in German and EU industrial projects such as battery-cell factories will be unfeasible if the region’s policy makers fail to control ballooning energy prices in the long-term, the head of Volkswagen AG’s namesake brand said.

“Unless we manage to reduce energy prices in Germany and Europe quickly and reliably, investments in energy-intensive production or new battery cell factories in Germany and the EU will be practically unviable,” VW Brand Chief Executive Officer Thomas Schaefer wrote Monday on LinkedIn. “The value creation in this area will take place elsewhere.”

An outline for industrial-policy cooperation hatched by the French and German economy ministers last week “falls short in crucial areas and does not address the envisaged priorities,” Schaefer said.

Europe’s energy crisis is compounding pressure on how to respond to the US’s Inflation Reduction Act, President Joe Biden’s climate and tax law that aims to boost domestic production of electric cars and reduce reliance on China for battery components and materials. European Union officials have said the subsidy program violates World Trade Organization rules and discriminates against non-US companies.

The EU’s programs don’t focus enough on “the short-term ramp-up, scaling and industrialisation of production,” Schaefer said, critizising what he called “outdated and bureaucratic state-aid rules.”

Volkswagen plans to have six battery factories in full operation across Europe by 2030 under its battery company PowerCo, which broke ground on its lead plant in Germany in July of this year and signed a €3 billion ($3.1 billion) joint venture with Umicore in September for cathode material production.


Man Stunned When He Sees Bill for Charging Hummer EV: 'You Won't Believe How Much It Costs'

There is the idea going around that electric vehicles are an efficient and inexpensive alternative to gas-powered vehicles. With the price of gas soaring in the past year and pressure to find an “eco-friendly” alternative to gas cars, electric vehicles are promoted as the future of driving.

But one man illustrated that the reality is much more complicated when he posted a video on YouTube showing how much it costs to charge a Hummer EV.

On Nov. 10, Kyle Conner, who runs the YouTube channel Out of Spec Reviews, posted a video in which he revealed the cost of charging the Hummer EV Edition 1 from zero to 100 percent.

The video was titled “You Won’t Believe How Much It Costs To Charge The Hummer EV” — and that is accurate.

No, your eyes did not deceive you. Charging the vehicle’s 200-kWh battery using the basic rack rate from Electrify America cost $96.32 — and that is without the taxes, which can bring the total price to over $100, Conner said.

“It’s the first production EV, passenger EV, that cost more than $100 to charge zero to full,” he said.

Yes, you can get a lower rate by buying an Electrify America Pass, but it still costs about $70 to charge the car, and you need to pay $4 per month for a pass.

It does get significantly less expensive when you get to per-minute charging, but the total cost still hovers around $40 without taxes and fees.

This is not the first test to show the high cost of charging the Hummer EV. In August, Car and Driver’s Testing Hub reported that an 80 percent charge of the vehicle cost $81, including tax, so a zero to 100 percent would run more than $100.

This is on top of the purchase price for the vehicle itself.

The Hummer EV usually costs around $100,000, and with the high demand and low supply, some people have paid more than $200,000 to get their hands on one.

Then you have to start considering the maintenance costs. It can cost over $8,000 to replace the taillights, and if you have to replace the battery, that can run $30,000.

Clearly, the Hummer EV is mostly a toy for the rich. The average person could never afford those expenses.

But electric vehicles overall are out of the reach of many Americans. According to Kelley Blue Book, the average price of a new EV in August was a whopping $66,524.

Combine that with the maintenance expenses and the surprisingly high price of a recharge, and it’s clear that electric vehicles aren’t the money-savers that President Joe Biden and other Democrats claim they are.


Australia: Climate reparations are sycophantic, virtue-signalling lunacy

Mike O'Connor

Summer, praise the Lord, is all but upon us so what will it be this year – fire, flood, cyclone or perhaps a plague of locusts?

Whichever is visited upon us, it will be hailed in apocalyptic terms as presaging the end of civilisation and a vindication of the beliefs of the wild-of-eye zealots who shriek “climate change” at the approach of every passing shower.

Reporters will stare sternly down the barrels of TV cameras with well-practised frowns and declare that we are experiencing the hottest/wettest/coolest/driest summer in history.

History shows that it’s all happened before and is guaranteed to happen again, but climate change and its attendant mantra of net zero emissions are the new religion, the opium of the people, with the federal Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Chris Bowen its anointed high priest.

To suggest that the end is not nigh is to court mindless wrath and tiresome self-righteousness so better, perhaps, to sit quietly and wait for the lights to go out as our little nation of 26 million souls seeks to save the planet and destroy our children’s future.

Our latest commitment is to pay climate reparations to developing nations for the damage as a developed nation that we have allegedly caused them to suffer.

Lots and lots of free money, it seems, will go some way to assuaging this hurt.

China is classed as one of these so we will be in the happy position of paying one of the world’s biggest emitters for our alleged sins.

If anyone can find a better example of sycophantic, virtue-signalling lunacy, I’d like to hear it.

As well as the imminence of extreme climatic events, these being those previously known as tropical and sub-tropical weather, the onset of summer signals the end of the parliamentary year, reason enough to crack a coldie and utter a silent prayer of thanks that we will be spared the self-congratulatory, chest-thumping crowing of our leaders for a precious few months.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese continues to enjoy the support of the electorate, but the storm clouds are beginning to gather as the unions call in their markers and Employment and Workplace Relations Minister Tony Burke dances puppet-like to their tune.

How lovely it would be if all you had to do to create a workers’ paradise was to give everyone a pay rise and entitle them to work fewer hours.

It’s amazing that no one has thought of it before.

More paid leave is also a sure way to lift productivity – paternity leave, maternity leave, domestic-violence leave and now a campaign for menopausal and menstrual leave.

The cost-of-living “crisis” will continue to make headlines through summer, a ”crisis” apparently lost on the millions of Australians who rushed out to buy things they didn’t need on Black Friday because a lot of retailers told them that they would save money if they did so. The more you spend, the more you save. Brilliant!

In sunny Queensland, Opposition Leader David Crisafulli must be looking at the Daniel Andrews victory in the Victorian state election as confirming what he suspected, which is that it is possible to fool most of the people most of the time as the Palaszczuk government staggers from one disaster to another, arrogance building on arrogance.

Crisafulli keeps jabbing away, but the only person on the Opposition benches whose punches appear to do any damage is his deputy Jarrod Bleijie.

The fact that Health Minister Yvette D’Ath and Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll have not resigned in disgrace says everything you need to know about this government.

Police Minister Mark Ryan should have joined them but could be spared, perhaps, in the light of his emerging talent as a stand-up comic.

As evidence mounted that your average goldfish would have a greater grasp of the police portfolio than his good self, the minister fired back by saying that Crisafulli should change his name to “Crisa-full-of-it.”

The cut and thrust of such a rapier-like wit is truly a joy to behold. I don’t know who is writing his lines, but I would suggest that they seek another line of work. Please!




Monday, November 28, 2022

Scientists trawl through 12,000 wheat specimens in 300-year-old collection in hopes of finding a strain that can cope with climate change

This is a total crock. Warmth is good for crops. And wheat already grows in a variety of climates. Global warming would expand cool climate crops (e.g. in Northern Canada) into new lands and lead to an INCREASE in wheat availability. Global warming is most likely to cause a GLUT of grain crops. It wouldn't take much warming for Canada's arable area to expand 100 miles further North

Scientists are hunting through 300-year-old wheat samples kept by the Natural History Museum to find a variety resilient enough to face the challenges of our changing climate.

The archives of the museum in London could hold the key to finding the hardier wheat type that could help feed the world as conditions become more unfavourable to modern-day wheat.

Out of the 12,000 samples held by the museum, scientists will sequence the genomes of the most promising specimens to find the genetic secrets of the toughest types of wheat.

The old varieties of wheat are stored in hundreds of old cardboard files in the museum vaults, containing dried leaves, stems or ears of grain, and sometimes all three, from centuries ago.

They're carefully labelled with information on where and when they were found.

Larissa Welton, who is part of the team digitising the archive so it can be accessed online, told the BBC: 'The collection spans back to the 1700s, including a specimen that was collected on Captain Cook's first voyage to Australia.'

The war in Ukraine, disease and pests are jeopardising the supply of modern-day wheat which is used globally for staples in our diets such as, bread, pasta, cereals and cakes.

Scientists predict that a one degree rise in climate temperature could decrease the production of wheat by an alarming 6.4 per cent.

Pests and diseases are also causing major challenges, reducing the projected annual yield by about a fifth each year.

The Green Revolution of the 1950s meant that wheat strains that could provide the greatest yield were favoured, which has shrunk the diversity in wheat varieties.

With a smaller pool of wheat varieties, farmers have now lost access to types of wheat that could survive the more extreme weather conditions we are seeing as a result of climate change today.

Last week, the global population hit eight billion and is projected to continue growing by an estimated 60% more by 2050.

Scientists are hoping to find strains that will grow in places that wheat does not currently grow in order to keep up with the demands of a booming world population.

Dr Matthew Clark, a geneticist at the Natural History Museum told the BBC: 'We want to be able to see whether there are some of the things that we have lost, that we could basically capture and bring back to the modern varieties,'

'For example, by looking at crops that were able to survive in more marginal areas - places with hot and dry climates - that could help more developing countries increase their food supply,' added Dr Clark.

He explained that this could be done through traditional plant breeding, genetic modification or gene editing - a technique where genes can be very precisely added, removed or replaced.

Scientists at the John Innes Centre in Norwich are searching for solutions through old wheat samples.

Their archive, called the Watkins landrace collection, contains samples for a hundred years ago and contains varieties from all over the world.

The samples are stored at a chilly 4C to preserve the seeds, which means they can be planted and grown.

The team at John Innes have had some success in taking some of the older varieties of wheat and cross-breeding them with modern ones.

Dr Simon Griffiths said: 'Within this collection of old wheats, there are new resistances to that disease, which stand up against this disease, and that's being deployed by breeders right now to defend this really important threat to wheat production.'

The team is also interested in finding more nutritious wheat varieties. 'What about what's in the wheat? We know that we can increase the fibre content, the mineral content of wheat,' he said.

'There's so much diversity that hasn't been fully exploited yet by modern wheat breeders, and we think we can bring that to them.'


Europe Pays for Green-Energy Illusions

Europe is struggling to keep its lights and the heat on this winter, and fuel supply is only half of the energy crisis. The other half, now coming into view, is the ruinous fiscal cost associated with the failure of green-energy flights of fancy. European taxpayers will pay this bill for years to come.

Governments across Europe have announced €674 billion ($696 billion) in handouts and subsidies to alleviate the burden of skyrocketing energy prices between September 2021 and October 2022, according to Bruegel, the Brussels-based think tank. The money includes €264 billion in Germany alone and the equivalent of €97 billion in the United Kingdom. This is on top of what households and businesses are paying in higher energy bills even after the subsidies.

Some policies will help. Almost every European country has reduced excise taxes on fuel. This is a rare instance of the energy crisis forcing a beneficial rethink of green fixations—in this case, Europe’s tendency to treat energy levies as a green “sin tax.” But for the most part the money is subsidizing households and businesses directly or indirectly. One common tactic is to impose a retail price cap, with taxpayers plugging the gap between the costs that utilities must pay for energy and what they’re allowed to charge consumers.

A special dishonorable mention goes to countries such as France and Germany whose energy policies have dragged the government directly into the utility business. Paris has turned majority-state-owned utility EDF into a subsidy slush fund, using state control to limit retail prices today while apparently hoping taxpayers won’t notice plunging dividends or a big equity injection tomorrow. Berlin may nationalize Uniper and is offering tens of billions of euros in subsidized credit to other utilities.

This tabulation assumes “temporary” subsidies will expire on schedule, such as Britain’s energy price cap that’s due to end in April. If you think politicians will do that willingly, we have a hydropower dam in the Sahara to sell you.

This tally doesn’t include costs associated with the race to build new energy infrastructure, especially to import natural gas from sources other than Russia. Governments seem to be in denial about how to encourage private investment to shoulder more of this load.

Politicians still claim their medium-term plan is to ramp up renewables such as wind and solar. But those subsidies will skew incentives against investing in gas terminals or pipelines and the like. Taxpayers may end up footing bills that private investors would have been willing to pay if politicians hadn’t promised to put fossil fuels out of business within 10-15 years. Governments also are rushing to impose windfall taxes on the profits from the fossil-fuel investments they say they want to encourage.

Add it all to the tab. It’s impossible to say how much money Europe has wasted on its failed green-energy transition over the past few decades. Estimates for Germany alone start in the hundreds of billions of dollars. Taxpayers shouldn’t be surprised if their total bill to bail out that failed energy transition tops $1 trillion in coming years. When it comes to green energy, the motto is “pay, and pay again.”


Europe needs to start fracking now! Hungary could have shale gas lasting a century

The Corvinus project, designed to kick-start shale gas extraction in Hungary, aims to ensure that the natural gas field in Békés county, at a depth of 3,700-4,500 metres, can be exploited as soon as possible, reported the economy portal Világgazdaság.

Former Minister of Innovation and Technology László Palkovics said encouragingly in early October that a priority was to review the Energy Strategy, including a significant reduction in the share of natural gas in the energy mix. The current national gas demand of 11.1 billion cubic meters per year would be reduced to 9.2 billion in the medium term, by 2030, and to 3.9 billion in the long term, by 2050. 40 percent of this would be imports. But the Hungarian government declared an energy emergency in the summer of 2022, and its action plan to address it includes an increase in domestic gas production from 1.5 billion cubic meters per year to at least 2 billion.

The ex-minister said in a statement in October that this could be done by 2023 without opening new fields. The project has been declared a priority investment by the government and is therefore exempted from the normal rules on historical monuments, environmental protection and local building regulations.

As part of the project, shale gas extraction in the Great Plain could start as early as January 2023.
Shale gas is largely methane, which is nearly 80 times more greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide over a 20-year period, and therefore, when released into the atmosphere, will accelerate global warming.

The new well was put into production on November 11 and will start with a production of 600 barrels per day.Continue reading

The Association of Hungarian Nature Protectors (MTVSZ) has warned though that shale gas is produced by a process known as hydraulic fracturing, whereby shale gas is drilled vertically and horizontally several kilometers into the rock and then fractured at high pressure with a mixture of water, granular material such as sand, and chemical additives such as highly carcinogenic benzene and formaldehyde, forcing the gas into the extraction well. One fracking operation requires roughly 15 million liters of water, and a shale gas well can be fracked up to ten times.


Australia: Chicken Little propaganda dressed up as science

The Bureau of Meteorology and the CSIRO have delivered their ­biennial dose of depression about the climate in their latest State of the Climate report. The climate has warmed by 1.5C and there is barely a single benefit – it is all ­disaster.

It is often said, “if it is too good to be true, it probably is” and you are being conned. What about too bad to be true? Can a gently warming climate have no significant benefits at all? The only marginally encouraging part of the report is about northern Australia. There might have been a slight reduction in cyclone numbers, and there has been a bit more rain in the recent decades.

Apart from that, the report reads like the Book of Exodus – one disaster after another. Only the frogs and boils are missing.

But it is significant that the period when Egyptians were building pyramids, which was hotter than today’s climate, is often called the Holocene Climatic Optimum. The word “optimum” was an indication that scientists working in the era before climate alarmism could see some advantage of a warmer climate.

A sure sign that the report tries too hard to find disaster is when it discusses coral bleaching and the Great Barrier Reef. It stresses that there have been four bleaching events in the past six years, which it implies were devastating. But for some reason the report fails to mention that this year the reef recorded its highest amount of coral since records began in 1985.

This proves that all the hype about the coral loss from bleaching was greatly exaggerated. But the report writers were obviously ­untroubled by the contradictory evidence. They ignored it.

And they also ignore the fact that corals grow about 15 per cent faster for every degree temperature rise, and that almost all the corals on the reef also live in much warmer water near the equator. We should expect better coral, and it should extend further south. That is not too bad, is it?

Why doesn’t the report mention that the extra CO2 in the atmosphere improves the water utilisation efficiency of dryland plants, which occupy most of Australia, and that this has caused plants to thrive? According to NASA satellites, there is a “greening” of Australia of at least 10 per cent. Overall, the world has seen the area of green leaves expand by the equivalent of twice the area of the United States in just 35 years.

In a changing climate, there will be winners and losers, and it might be that the net effect is a major problem. But if the report writers will not even mention the good bits, how can we have any confidence in its findings?

The latest report should ring alarm bells – but not just about climate. Is this an excellent tool of propaganda, or is it a scientific statement?

We should all worry about whether groupthink has taken hold of the BOM and CSIRO.

We should worry when the BOM says it has recently adjusted all the temperature records reducing the temperatures a century ago by up to a degree. Can we have any confidence they did this with a good scientific reason?

And we should worry about the BOM’s claims that the fire seasons are now much worse than in 1950. Why is all the information on huge bushfires before 1950 ignored – like the devastating 1851 Victorian bushfire and the 1939 fires? It is not like there is no data before 1950.

Did they ignore that data for a good reason? Is this similar to the US fire statistics, which are often reported by authorities as having a major increase in fire acreage burnt since the early 60s, but fail to mention that there was almost 10 times more acreage burnt in the “dust-bowl” period in the 1930s?

In the next decades, Australian governments plan to spend hundreds of billions attempting to prevent climate change. Before we do that, maybe we could spend a few million doing an audit of BOM and CSIRO reports.

Maybe we would find that adapting to a changing climate is by far the best way to proceed. We might even find that some of what we have been told is wrong.

Why will the conservative parties not commit to an audit? Who would argue against a bit of checking of the science, when the Great Barrier Reef statistics prove scientists got something badly wrong?

And the latest report is a sure sign that the BOM and CSIRO are drifting into political advocacy rather than science, observation, and objective prediction.




Sunday, November 27, 2022

Biden Administration Pledges to Pay ‘Climate Reparations’-- for what?

On Nov. 20, officials at the 27th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP27) agreed to form an international fund to promote “climate justice” by implementing “climate reparations.”

According to Simon Stiell, the UN climate change executive secretary, “We have determined a way forward on a decades-long conversation on funding for loss and damage—deliberating over how we address the impacts on communities whose lives and livelihoods have been ruined by the very worst impacts of climate change.”

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen described the climate reparations deal as “a small step towards climate justice.”

In reality, the deal struck at COP27, in which wealthy nations will pay billions of dollars to poor nations, has nothing to do with climate justice and everything to do with global wealth redistribution.

As of now, there’s no evidence that poor, undeveloped countries have suffered from increased climate change disasters due to the carbon dioxide emissions from wealthy, developed countries such as the United States.

Likewise, there’s no guarantee that the billions of dollars that would be funneled from rich countries to poor countries would be invested in “green” infrastructure. In fact, the poorer nations that are in line to receive the climate reparation payments scoffed when U.S. Climate Envoy John Kerry attempted to insert a provision into the agreement that would phase down their use of “unabated” fossil fuels.

In other words, rich Western nations have agreed to send boatloads of money to low-income countries with no assurance that these funds will not end up in the pockets of corrupt officials, as has happened so many times in the past.

Moreover, the climate reparations agreement ignores the fact that poor nations are poor not because of the carbon dioxide emissions from rich countries, but mostly because they lack access to affordable and abundant energy.

As we have seen with the European energy crisis in recent months, ample access to reliable and cheap energy, namely via fossil fuels, is the bedrock for a thriving economy.

If the UN actually sought to improve the living standards of the billions of people residing in abject poverty in developing countries, it would do everything in its power to ensure that they have total access to low-cost, dependable energy.

According to the International Energy Agency: “Today 770 million people live without access to electricity, mostly in Africa and Asia. … Africa’s increase in the number of people without access contrasts with Asia, where the rollout of grid connections and distributed electricity access solutions was supported by more concerted policies and easier access to financing. … Almost 1.2 billion people have gained access to electricity in developing Asia since 2000, with 97% of the region having access in 2020 compared with 67% in 2000.”

The principal reason that Asia has made great strides over the past 20 years in ensuring that almost all of its population has access to electricity is because it has embraced fossil fuels.

In turn, several Asian nations, notably China and India, have drastically reduced the percentage of their people toiling in poverty.

China, in particular, has fully embraced fossil fuels as a means of spurring its dramatic economic transformation. As of today, China is responsible for emitting more than double the amount of carbon dioxide emissions than the United States and European Union, combined.

Yet, according to the COP27 climate reparations agreement, China is considered a “developing” country and is therefore exempt from paying into the newly created fund.

What’s more, the climate reparations agreement is just a down payment on what the UN has in mind for the years to come.

According to the UN: “A global transformation to a low-carbon economy is expected to require investments of at least USD 4-6 trillion a year. Delivering such funding will require a swift and comprehensive transformation of the financial system and its structures and processes, engaging governments, central banks, commercial banks, institutional investors and other financial actors.”

Make no mistake, the UN’s calls for “climate justice” via a “climate reparations” fund isn’t the end of the quest for rich nations to transfer wealth to poor nations; it’s just the beginning.


World cup stadiums and “green” exploitation of cheap, disposable workforces

Wealthy countries seem to be oblivious to the humanity atrocities and environmental degradation occurring in other countries to support bizarre environmental policies and the need for athletic entertainment.

The 2022 World Cup in Qatar kicked off on Sunday November 20 at the Al Bayt Stadium, but the “acceptable” toll on the cheap disposable workforce will provide viewers and participants with many lingering questions about our ethical and moral beliefs resulting from the grim toll of more than 6,500 migrant laborers who died between 2011 and 2020, many while helping build World Cup infrastructure including seven new stadiums. The low cost of stadium construction reflects the even lower cost of labor in Qatar.

Many of us had a chance to view the 2006 movie “Blood Diamonds” starring Leonardo DiCaprio that portrays many of the similar atrocities that took place in Qatar to build seven new stadiums for the 2022 World Cup, and continues occurring today in the developing countries that are mining for the “Blood Minerals” i.e., those exotic minerals and metals to support the “green” movement within wealthy countries.

Wealthy countries continue to silently support similar the exploitation of folks with yellow, brown, and black skin by supporting subsidies to procure EV’s and build more wind and solar when those subsidies are providing financial incentives to the developing countries mining for those “green” materials that promotes further exploitations of poor people in developing countries and environmental degradation to landscapes in “other” countries

Even President Biden’s expressed his recent shift on child labor when the Biden administration declared October 4, 2022, that batteries from China may be tainted by child labor, a move that could upend the electric vehicle industry while giving fresh ammunition to critics of White House climate policies.

The Department of Labor said it would add lithium-ion batteries to a list of goods made with materials known to be produced with child or forced labor under a 2006 human trafficking law. The decision was based on many batteries using cobalt, a mineral largely mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where children have been found to work at some mining sites.

The department released the list in the form of a report that excoriated “clean energy” supply chains for using forced labor. It grouped Chinese batteries together with polysilicon — a key material used in solar panel cells — made in the Chinese province of Xinjiang.

Biden’s 2022 declaration occurred one year after the book “Clean Energy Exploitations – Helping Citizens Understand the Environmental and Humanity Abuses That Support Clean Energy was nominated for a 2021 Pulitzer Prize. The book does an excellent job of discussing the lack of transparency to the world of the green movement’s impact upon humanity exploitations in the developing countries that are mining for the exotic minerals and metals required to create the batteries needed to store “green energy”. In these developing countries, these mining operations exploit child labor, and are responsible for the most egregious human rights’ violations of vulnerable minority populations. These operations are also directly destroying the planet through environmental degradation.

Whatever the plan to satisfy our sports entertainment values, and our attempts to address climate challenges, we best not forget that have ethical and moral responsibilities to continue to address the materialistic needs of those eight billion now on this planet.


Cooling Aerosols must be included in climate risk assessments

When Pakistan faced appalling floods in June this year, global attention focused on climate change as the culprit. The country had three times the usual rainfall in its summer monsoon, exacerbated by short spikes of extremely heavy rain. Riverbanks burst and more than 1,600 people died. Formal attribution studies and politicians alike blamed global warming for making such an event much more likely. Something else should have been mentioned, too: aerosols.

Aerosols are the miasma of soot (black carbon), sulfur dioxide, organic carbon and other compounds that drives poor air quality over many of the world’s most-populated regions. Studies show that aerosols strongly affect the likelihood of extreme precipitation events1, such as those that contributed to Pakistan’s floods, and many other climate hazards.

Worse, it is not clear whether aerosols are set to rise, fall or stabilize. The amount of uncertainty about aerosol levels by 2050 is as large as the total increase since pre-industrial times (see ‘Drastic uncertainty’). Over the next 20–30 years, we might — or might not — see aerosol-driven climate changes as large as those that have played out over the past 170 years, adding as much as 0.5 °C to global warming. That could rapidly change the likelihood of extreme events occurring in many regions.

Yet the impacts of aerosols on climate risk are often ignored. The issue was not on the official agenda of the 27th United Nations climate conference (COP27) in Sharm-El-Shaikh, Egypt. This neglect must end.

Critical gap

Aerosols are hugely important to the climate, globally and regionally. The details are complicated. Some aerosols warm the atmosphere, others cool it, depending on their type, height above ground and impact on clouds. But, overall, vast emissions of aerosols since the start of the industrial age have had a profound cooling effect by reflecting sunlight. Without them, the global warming we see today would be 30–50% greater.

Historically, aerosols have had dramatic regional impacts. They were the main reason temperatures in Europe didn’t warm between the 1950s and 1980s2. They drove a decline in the South Asian monsoon during the second half of the last century3. And they were a major driver of the late-twentieth-century Sahel drought4, which triggered a famine that killed 100,000 people.

How climate change and unplanned urban sprawl bring more landslides

Globally, aerosols are a more powerful player in climate extremes than are greenhouse gases. Warm the world by removing aerosol emissions and this will create more extremely hot days, more extreme precipitation events, and more consecutive dry days over highly populated regions, than if the world was warmed by the same amount by adding greenhouse gases5.

Despite all this, regional estimates of risk from climate change often omit aerosol impacts. Most evaluations of near-term climate risk used by policymakers either ignore aerosols or reduce their effects to a globally averaged offset to warming by greenhouse gases. This probably strongly underestimates risks to communities both near and far from sources of aerosols.

As experts in aerosol–climate interaction, climate impacts and scenario development from many nations, we call for estimates of climate risk to include regional aerosol projections. Policymakers and stakeholders must recognize that their assessments of near-term risk are probably missing a critical component. In the longer term, we need to ensure that any forecasting tools used are ‘aerosol aware’.

Stakeholders potentially face a range of nasty surprises if they continue to be solely focused on risks driven by greenhouse gases.


A picture of a tree in regional South Australia has sparked a wild climate change debate

image from

As floodwaters from the River Murray crept up the Loxton’s Tree of Knowledge, one local thought it was a good time to take a picture to put things into perspective.

The photo posted on social media shows the tree littered with markings from recent floods.

Well above the current flood level is a marking from 1956.

For some, it was a smoking gun that climate change isn’t real.

“And the climate change back in 1956 was caused by what?” one person joked. “I wonder if they were talking climate change in 73, 74 and 75,” another added.

Others pointed out an obvious issue. “How tall was that tree in 1956?” one person questioned.

“Trees grow upward from the top, not from the bottom. Their trunks spread outward, not upward,” one person correctly stated.

Others said the one tree was just a bad data set.

“Using one tree as evidence to suit your agenda shows what level of intelligence we are dealing with,” one said.

“There are many factors why areas have worse flooding. There is no denying though, with mass land clearing as one factor, flooding will only get worse under extreme climate events such as La Nina,” he continued.

Hundreds have flocked to the seemingly innocuous post to duke it out in a debate about climate. In fact, 1956 was the worst flood on record for the area, with the ‘Great Flood’ described as “the greatest catastrophe in the state’s history”.

According to the Adelaide Advertiser, the flood was a culmination of two years of a La Nina, which had brought three months of heavy rain to Queensland, Victoria and NSW.




Friday, November 25, 2022

Global rainbow distribution under current and future climates

Is this a spoof?


Rainbows contribute to human wellbeing by providing an inspiring connection to nature. Because the rainbow is an atmospheric optical phenomenon that results from the refraction of sunlight by rainwater droplets, changes in precipitation and cloud cover due to anthropogenic climate forcing will alter rainbow distribution. Yet, we lack a basic understanding of the current spatial distribution of rainbows and how climate change might alter this pattern.

To assess how climate change might affect rainbow viewing opportunities, we developed a global database of crowd-sourced photographed rainbows, trained an empirical model of rainbow occurrence, and applied this model to present-day climate and three future climate scenarios.

Results suggest that the average terrestrial location on Earth currently has 117 ± 71 days per year with conditions suitable for rainbows. By 2100, climate change is likely to generate a 4.0–4.9 % net increase in mean global annual rainbow-days (i.e., days with at least one rainbow), with the greatest change under the highest emission scenario. Around 21–34 % of land areas will lose rainbow-days and 66–79 % will gain rainbow-days, with rainbow gain hotspots mainly in high-latitude and high-elevation regions with smaller human populations.

Our research demonstrates that alterations to non-tangible environmental attributes due to climate change could be significant and are worthy of consideration and mitigation.


Biden Administration Holds Up Major Oil Refinery Despite Looming Fuel Crisis

President Joe Biden’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on November 17 that it would not reopen a key U.S. oil refinery in the Virgin Islands, despite a coming national shortage in diesel fuel that could prove catastrophic to the country.

According to the Daily Caller, the St. Croix refinery was first shut down in June of 2021 after the administration demanded a “Prevention of Significant Deterioration” permit, required by the Clean Air Act, that would prove the refinery’s capabilities of reducing air pollution if reopened. The refinery is owned by West Indies Petroleum Limited and Port Hamilton Refining and Transportation, LLLC.

The St. Croix refinery, one of the largest oil refineries in the world, was capable of producing over 600,000 barrels of crude oil per day, processing that oil into gasoline and heating oil, which is a form of diesel. Heating oil is now 65 percent more expensive in October of 2022 than it was in October of 2021, according to Bloomberg.

The U.S. currently has only about 26 days left of diesel fuel in commercial inventories, with the Energy Information Administration (EIA) admitting that one gallon of diesel now costs $1.58 more than it did in November of last year. In addition, Biden’s EPA is considering another anti-diesel plan that would make prices even worse, by forcing oil companies to store a mandatory minimum amount of diesel in their fuel tanks.

“I am committed to prioritizing the health and safety of underserved and overburdened communities across this country and holding polluters accountable,” said EPA Administrator Michael Regan. “This will ensure protections for St. Croix by requiring the refinery to operate in compliance with environmental laws designed to protect people’s health and the environment.”

The counterproductive move by the Biden Administration reflects its far-left “green energy” approach to energy policy, which has included shutting down the sale of all oil leases on federal land, as well as stifling domestic oil production in favor of so-called “renewable” forms of energy such as wind, solar, and electric. These policies led to the spike in gas prices earlier in 2022, a crisis that was subsequently exacerbated by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Although Biden has turned to raiding the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) as a means of temporarily reducing gas prices in order to improve his public image, gas prices have continued to rise after a brief drop, and the coming diesel shortage could spell disaster for the United States if truck drivers are no longer able to transport food and other goods across the country.


Protests Erupt After Irish Govt Bans Peat, A Natural, Abundant Fuel

Protesters gathered in front of a shuttered power station on Sunday to demonstrate against the Irish government’s banning of a natural and abundant fossil fuel just in time for the winter energy crisis.

A large group of mostly rural individuals gathered at the closed West Offaly Power Station [pictured] in Shannonbridge on Sunday afternoon to protest against the Irish government’s continued green agenda drive in the face of the ongoing energy crisis.

The station was closed back in 2020 as part of an EU-supported government drive to drastically reduce the use of turf [peat] in Ireland, a natural fossil fuel that can be easily obtained using a shovel from bogs throughout the country.

As part of this green drive, the government has now outright banned the commercial sale of peat on the island entirely, drastically curtailing the ability of ordinary citizens to obtain locally sourced traditional fuel at a time when fuel bills are rising dramatically.

“We are demonstrating to maintain our right to continue to cut turf so we can heat our homes and cook our meals,” Mick Cantwell, a member of the organization that hosted the protest, told local paper the Athlone Advertiser.

“We are also of the view that Shannonbridge Power Station should be reopened, preventing extreme poverty for all living through this present energy crisis.”

Also present at the demonstration was Carol Nolan, an independent elected representative within Ireland’s national parliament, as well as Shane Lynam of the Irish Freedom Party, who addressed the crowd.

“The current regime we are up against wants nothing more than to destroy Irish culture and the Irish way of life,” Lynam said in a speech at the event, during which he frequently criticized the EU’s involvement in the restrictions on the harvesting of turf, as well as its “hollow promises of globalism”.

Coming into force on Halloween this year, the ban on the commercial sale of turf in Ireland comes amid fears that the island nation — like many other EU members — will see rolling blackouts this winter.

Despite the island sporting a wide variety of both onshore and offshore deposits of fossil fuels, top-down climate change laws imposed at the national and European Union level have largely prevented the country from utilizing them, resulting in Ireland obtaining a large amount of its natural gas from abroad.

The country also lacks any in-use gas storage facilities, a fact that leaves it far more vulnerable to disruptions in supply compared to the likes of Germany.

As a result of these factors, the country’s national grid operators may be forced to cut off certain parts of the country from their electricity supply in order to keep the grid stable, while one senator has now described rolling blackouts as being a “very real prospect” facing Ireland over the coming months.

Ireland is not the only country where the national governments have banned a cheap and easy-to-use home heating fuel just in time for the national gas and electricity grid to come under pressure, with energy prices for those commodities soaring.

The UK has banned the sale of house coal, citing environmental concerns, a legacy of the Boris Johnson era of radical green politics.


Australia: Greenie hatred of sheep and cattle

Having flown to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (Cop 27) in Egypt, Climate Change Minister Chris Bowen has been at pains to point out the Albanese government’s commitment to US President Joe Biden’s international pledge to reduce methane emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.

The pledge will impel greenhouse gas-intensive industries like agriculture which, owing to the digestive systems of sheep and cattle is responsible for about half of Australia’s methane emissions, to curb their methane output.

If the target is legislated, the door would open for punitive regulatory measures to be placed on graziers running cattle and sheep.

Across the ditch, New Zealand is planning to impose a ‘burp tax’ on farmers by 2025 which, according to its own modelling, would force an estimated 20 per cent of cattle and sheep farmers and 5 per cent of dairy farmers out of business.

Such a policy in Australia would have the same result, with farmers compelled to de-stock, leading to a decline in food production and a skyrocketing of meat and dairy prices. The inevitable farm closures would devastate regional communities.

Why the Albanese government would commit to any measure that risks destabilising Australia’s agricultural industry beggars belief.

In the current geopolitical climate, the lesson could not be clearer: food security is inextricably linked to national security – a point emphasised in a recent report from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute which outlines that ‘robust and resilient food and fibre production systems are critical to political and social stability’.

One need only look as far as Ukraine to see the horrific results when food supplies become weapons of war. By mercilessly blockading Ukrainian cereal exports, Vladimir Putin has plunged millions in chronically malnourished regions in Africa and the Middle East into food scarcity and starvation.

Fortunately, Australia is one of the most food-secure nations on earth. Our $83 billion agricultural industry produces enough food every year to feed Australia threefold. Surplus supplies go to our neighbours in the Indo-Pacific region – home to half of the world’s undernourished people.

The war in Ukraine, therefore, is a salutary reminder that, in any crisis to come closer to home, Australian farmers will play a crucial strategic role in bolstering not only our national resilience but peace and stability in our region.

The ASPI report argues that government and policymakers should take heed of ‘Putin’s war on global food security’ and examine how ‘national security can be threatened as well as enhanced by how we approach agriculture policy, investment and production’ in Australia.

Despite its strategic importance, few industries are as demonised by the urban green lobby or as burdened by environmental regulation as Australian agriculture, particularly the livestock sector.

Even before the methane pledge, Australian farmers were up to their neck in cumbersome environmental regulation.

Recent research from the Institute of Public Affairs has shown that the weight of Commonwealth environmental red tape, known as ‘green tape’, that farmers are forced to wade through, has grown 80-fold since 1971.

The effect has been to stifle the efficiency and productivity of Australian farmers.

IPA research shows that the Commonwealth’s environmental bureaucracy has grown at nearly three times the rate of the agricultural sector since 2000. In the same period, for every one job created in the environmental bureaucracy, 14 jobs have been lost in agriculture.

The excessive regulatory burdens placed on our farmers border on the ridiculous. To build a single irrigation pivot on private land requires no less than eight different permits.

Excessive green tape risks hampering our food security which, in times of crisis, is one of the most critical requirements to national resilience.

All of this reflects the growing tendency among policymakers to place lofty climate ambitions above the practical needs of our nation.

Despite paying for our social services, healthcare, and infrastructure, farmers – like miners – are increasingly enemy-number-one for the green climate lobby who paint them as environmental vandals. This despite the seemingly obvious fact that sustainable land management is unquestionably in the interest of every single farmer.

The reality in modern Australia is that fewer and fewer Australians have any connection to farming, agriculture or our rural regions. Worse still, few recognise that Australia is a secure, stable and safe nation largely thanks to the efforts of our farmers, both past and present. Not to mention peace in our region.

Our agricultural industry sits at the heart of our nation.

Recognising this, the Albanese government should act to cut unnecessary green tape, commit to no new taxes on farmers and, most importantly, celebrate the noble work our farmers do, not only feeding and clothing their fellow citizens but millions around the world as well.

This is now a national security priority. Just as Australia was built on the sheep’s back, so too will we rely on our farmers in any dark times to come




Thursday, November 24, 2022

Climate reparations exposed

At the recently concluded UN COP27 climate conference in Egypt, Tuvalu Prime Minister Natano called for reparations to "at-risk" nations. At the conclusion of the conference, negotiators from nearly 200 countries agreed to fund poor nations for the "loss and damage" they are supposedly experiencing.

We decided to take a deeper dive into the claims of "sinking islands," and the truth may surprise you.

Tuvalu is a low-lying island nation in the South Pacific with an average elevation of two meters (3.3 feet) and consists of four reef islands and five true atolls. Its highest elevation is 4.5 meters (15 ft) above sea level, which gives Tuvalu the second-lowest maximum elevation of any country (after the Maldives)

The claim is made that continued sea-level rise will soon put Tuvalu and other low-lying nations under water. That certainly sounds like a reasonable assumption, but putting this into a longer geologic context is important.

About 20,000 years ago, the islands of what is now Tuvalu were just above sea level, just as they are today. Since that time, sea level has risen more than 400 feet (130 meters) and yet, the islands remained above sea level.

The reason that these islands grew is a geologic process known as "accretion." This process transfers sediment from the beachface to the island surface and allows the islands to keep up with rising seas. In fact, over the last four decades, there has been a net increase in land area of the islands of nearly 3 percent (33 acres).

Maldives - And what of the most at-risk island nation? According to Forbes, there is a construction boom going on there with the building of new villas, resorts and airports. All of this is funded by equity companies and protected by multinational insurance companies. Bear in mind that these institutions avoid risk like the plague. Would they put their capital at risk if they thought that the islands were going to be under water soon?


Biden Agrees To Pay Climate Reparations—And China, the World’s Top Carbon Emitter, Could Profit

The Biden administration on Saturday agreed to pay climate reparations to developing nations, a move that China—the world's top emitter of greenhouse gases and one of its largest economies—could profit from.

Administration officials emerged from the United Nations Climate Change Conference over the weekend with a global agreement to establish a "climate justice" fund that would see the United States and other wealthy nations pay developing countries for "loss and damage" caused by climate change. But the U.N. still classifies China—which boasts the second-highest gross domestic product in the world—as a developing country, meaning it could benefit from the fund.

That classification has left the United States scrambling to assure "that China will eventually contribute to any fund created—and that China would not be eligible to receive money from it," the New York Times reported Saturday. Beyond its economic status, China is by far the world's number one carbon emitter: The communist nation's greenhouse gas emissions in 2019 "exceeded those of the U.S. and other developed nations combined," according to CNBC.

It's unclear exactly how much the fund would cost, but a 2021 U.N. estimate placed the annual price tag in the hundreds of billions of dollars. That sky-high figure—and China's potential to receive a portion of it—will likely draw Congress's ire, particularly after Republicans take control of the House in early 2023. Biden's climate diplomats agreed to the fund at the conference, but Congress still must appropriate any taxpayer money that goes into it. Sen. John Barrasso (R., Wyo.) has already called the fund "completely misguided," and even a razor-thin House GOP majority could decline to bankroll it should its members remain united in opposition.

Biden's decision to back the climate fund comes just days after his climate czar, John Kerry, assured reporters that such a fund was "just not happening." "It's a well-known fact that the United States and many other countries will not establish … some sort of legal structure that is tied to compensation or liability," Kerry said on November 12. Roughly one week later, after the conference's conclusion, Kerry released a statement saying he "welcomes" the fund's creation.

The White House did not return a request for comment.

Beyond the Biden administration's support for climate reparations, conference attendees faced criticism for using gas-guzzling private jets to travel to the two-week summit, which was held in Sharm El Sheikh, a swanky resort town in Egypt. Brazil's president-elect, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, flew to the climate conference on a millionaire businessman's private jet, and more than 400 private aircraft flooded Egypt's airports during the conference, according to Business Insider. Last year's conference, which occurred in Glasgow, contributed to the emission of roughly 103,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases—roughly 7,000 times the average American's annual carbon footprint.

Power the Future founder and executive director Daniel Turner admonished the U.N. and other world climate leaders for their exorbitance, arguing that U.S. taxpayers should not fork over more money for climate reparations when they've already paid for government officials to "live glamorously and travel the world in the name of climate change."


Green Britain: UK economy to suffer biggest hit from energy crisis among G7 nations

Britain is predicted to continue to suffer from painful inflation exacerbated by worker shortages and ‘untargeted’ energy support.

Gloomy forecasts from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) reveal a sharp downgrade for the country’s economy. It is expected to shrink by 0.4% in 2023 and grow by just 0.2% in 2024.

In the new report, the OECD took aim at the UK Government’s support efforts to cap energy bills at around £2,500 until April. Experts say doing so will push up inflation and mean households and businesses will be hit by higher interest rates as a result as policymakers look to rein in price and wage rises.

The OECD said: ‘The untargeted Energy Price Guarantee announced in September 2022 by the Government will increase pressure on already high inflation in the short term, requiring monetary policy to tighten more and raising debt service costs.

‘Better targeting of measures to cushion the impact of high energy prices would lower the budgetary cost, better-preserve incentives to save energy, and reduce the pressure on demand at a time of high inflation.’

Germany is the only other G7 country set to see a contraction in gross domestic product (GDP) next year, with a 0.3% drop, according to the report.

Italy will see only paltry growth of 0.2%, while the United States will eke out 0.5% expansion, with GDP set to rise by 0.6% in France and 1% in Canada and 1.8% in Japan.

On Britain’s outlook, the OECD cautioned: ‘Risks to the outlook are considerable and tilted towards the downside.

‘Higher-than-expected goods and energy prices could weigh on consumption and further depress growth.

‘A prolonged period of acute labour shortages could force firms into a more permanent reduction in their operating capacity or push up wage inflation further.’

But it said households may choose to return to the jobs market to help boost stretched finances.

The OECD said UK inflation – which hit a 41-year high of 11.1% in October – will likely peak at the end of this year and remain above 9% into early 2023, before slowing to 4.5% by next year-end and to 2.7% by the end of 2024.

Its report sees UK interest rates rising further from 3% currently to 4.5% by April next year, while unemployment will lift from 3.6% to 5% by the end of 2024.


Tropical cyclones reached Sydney in the 1950s and they could return

It's terrible weather but is NOT due to global warming

NSW could be impacted by destructive tropical cyclones this decade, and it's not because of climate change.

While only two cyclones have directly struck NSW since 1974, the state was pounded by a cyclone every two years from the 1940s to the 1970s, many leading to record flood levels and deaths.

What's concerning is the Pacific pattern behind the abundance of cyclones last century has now returned.

Tropical cyclones can reach Sydney

Studying 27 NSW cyclone tracks between 1887 and 2013 shows most storms impacted the state's north-east but some survived down to Sydney and the South Coast.

What's irregular is the majority of cyclones arrived in just a 30-year window from 1945 to 1974, including eight in the 1950s.

While cyclones continue to annually make landfall over northern Australia, during the past 48 years only Cyclone Nancy (1990) and Ex-Cyclone Oswald (2013) reached NSW, both bringing significant flooding and a damage bill in the hundreds of millions.

Where have the cyclones gone?

The inordinate frequency of cyclones from the 40s to the 70s and the disappearance in recent decades is not random variability.

A 2020 report in the Journal of Southern Hemisphere Earth Systems links NSW cyclone activity with changes in the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO).

The current state of the IPO and other cyclone influences has rapidly shifted in the past three years to resemble the 1950s. Meaning, the current phase of the Pacific is conducive to tropical cyclones impacting NSW.

How the IPO can impact weather for decades

The IPO is a shift in Pacific Ocean temperatures but unlike the annual La Nina and El Nino oscillations, the changes extend outside of the tropics and last from years to even decades.

A negative phase of the IPO occurs when waters along the equator are cooler than normal (region 2) while waters are warm off Australia's east coast (region 3) and in the northern Pacific (region 1).

A negative IPO phase was behind the flood dominant 1950s to 1970s and a period when tropical cyclones regularly visited NSW.

A positive phase led to drought dominant weather in Australia from the 1980s to 2000s.

The lowest IPO values during the past 100 years were in the early 50s, and 1950 was not only the wettest year on record for NSW but also a year when a tropical cyclone made it to Sydney.

The one year average IPO in 2022 is running at the lowest value since 1917 and the 11 year average is plummeting as a result.

Deadliest cyclones to reach NSW and Sydney

Before tropical cyclones were regularly named a system in January 1950 — labelled TC119 — made landfall on the Gulf of Carpentaria coast then tracked south and reached Sydney as a category 1 system about three days later.

Sydney recorded its second lowest pressure on record at 988 HPa and 114mm of rain in 24 hours. Ten people died and seven yachts were wrecked in Sydney Harbour.

This kicked off what became the wettest year on record, before 2022.

In February 1954, TC137 also dropped more than 100mm on Sydney after crossing the coast near Tweed Heads as a category 3 cyclone with wind gusts in excess of 165 km/h.

TC137 caused disastrous floods in Lismore and Casino, destroyed houses and led to 30 fatalities, the deadliest cyclone in NSW post 1900.

Dorrigo received 809mm in 24 hours from TC137, a NSW 24 hour rain record which still stands today.

Going back even further to 1911, a tropical cyclone made landfall in the Gulf of Carpentaria on January 5.

It travelled south to NSW before moving out to sea again near Wollongong about the 15th.

According to the Bureau of Meteorology wind gusts of 137 km/h were recorded in Sydney, equivalent to the speed of a category two cyclone.

Could cyclones return to NSW this year?

There is obviously no guarantee, especially considering the recent climate change induced reduction in cyclone numbers around the world.

However, if the IPO remains strongly negative for several years, a major cyclone striking NSW would be far from unprecedented. And with the population more than double that of the 1950s the potential damage from a tropical cyclone is higher than ever.




Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Climate reparations dead in the water as US Republicans say 'No way'

Liberals and conservatives are criticizing a U.N.-backed deal supported by the Biden administration for richer nations to pay reparations to poorer countries for the impacts of climate change.

Attendees of the COP27 climate summit held in Egypt went into overtime last weekend to establish a global “loss and damage” fund. The historic initiative calls for wealthier nations like the U.S. and its allies in Europe to compensate poorer nations that have been most affected by climate change but are among the lowest emitters of greenhouse gases.

The agreement has frustrated the political left and right alike in the U.S.

Climate hawks argue the agreement failed to go far enough because it did not call for phasing out all fossil fuels — only reiterating that the world should wean itself from coal. They also say it delayed many of the thornier decisions, such as how the fund would work and how much should be paid, until next year’s annual conference.

The U.S. and other developed countries have failed to meet a prior pledge to provide $100 billion per year.

Michael Sheldrick of the climate change and poverty advocacy group Global Citizen questioned whether the money will ever come to fruition.

“We have to ask ourselves: how credible are any new commitments, given the failure to make progress in other key areas? How can we take any of these new commitments seriously given promises that continue to go unmet?” Mr. Sheldrick said in a statement. “COP27 seems to retract on the $100 billion pledge in climate finance, a promise already broken two years in a row.”

Conservatives, meanwhile, suggested it amounted to an international slush fund for richer nations to fork over tens of billions of dollars each year to developing countries.

“Simply put, the United States can’t pay. We could give a few billion dollars now and then, but we’re $31 trillion in debt and face trillion dollar-per-year deficits for the foreseeable future,” said Alex Flint, executive director of the right-leaning economic climate group Alliance for Market Solutions. “Even if we were willing to pay, we simply don’t have the resources, or at least enough to reasonably compensate damages.”

Diana Furchtgott‑Roth, an energy analyst at the conservative Heritage Foundation and former Department of Transportation official in the Trump administration, argued the deal only further hamstrings poorer countries. As part of a broader agreement, wealthy nations want commitments from poorer ones to slash emissions to help meet the goal of limiting global temperature increases.

“The West should be encouraging all countries to use the most efficient forms of energy,” Ms. Furchtgott‑Roth said. “They can’t get to Western levels of living without conventional fuels: oil, natural gas, coal, nuclear. For us to have these standards of living and then say to other countries ‘you can’t have them’ is selfish and oblivious to the situations these low-income countries are in.”


COP-27 Financiers And Merchants Of Death

As Americans give thanks this week for our many blessings, let us recall the Pilgrims’ and Native Americans’ primitive agricultural knowledge and technologies, the hunger and disease that were constants in their lives – and how so many around the world are not much better off today.

Much of Africa still lives on the edge, with well over 600 million people not even having electricity. Many parts of India, Asia and Latin America also face serious energy and food deprivation.

Incredibly, so does Europe. “German industry stares into the Net Zero abyss,” “Europe’s energy crisis may get even worse next year,” “Even Germany’s wind industry is sliding into crisis,” “Millions face poverty and destitution in Green Britain, as Brits pay highest electricity bills in world,” headlines warn.

Banning Russian gas imports amid Putin’s war on Ukraine plays a role and is frequently scapegoated. But the primary cause is Europe’s love affair with intermittent wind and solar, and hate-fest for fossil fuels and nuclear, amid frigid winter realities that have caused Germany to obliterate ancient villages and recent-vintage wind farms to mine lignite coal beneath them.

Closer to home, New England and New York also face a cold, dark winter, because they too have voted against drilling, fracking, pipelines, coal and nuclear power – and now demand more oil and gas from the same companies that they and President Biden want to drive into oblivion.

However, the greatest hypocrisy of all was on full-throated display at the COP-27 climate circus in Egypt November 6-18 – where attendees kept asking whether Africa should be allowed to exploit its oil, natural gas and coal reserves to improve living standards, feed families and save lives!

Al Gore preached that fossil fuel investments should be terminated worldwide, including in Africa. UN Secretary General António Guterres absurdly asserted that “New funding for fossil fuel exploration and production is delusional” and will only “feed the scourge of war, pollution and climate catastrophe” (the manmade cataclysms found in computer models and COP-27 rants, though not in the Real World).

At the COP-27 climate gabfest in Sham-El-Sheikhdown, Egypt, John Kerry said African nations shouldn’t rely on natural gas to generate electricity and modernize. (Kerry has five houses, a yacht and private jet – but that’s OK because they’re in his wife’s name, and he merely “makes use of them.”)

Even worse, it’s not just energy these arrogant eco-totalitarians want to obstruct in Africa and other developing regions. It’s also modern fertilizers — indeed, all aspects of modern agriculture – everything that can actually help farmers feed hungry people and make enough money to build a home or barn, send their children to school, and buy tractors and other equipment.

They don’t even want Africa producing natural gas and using it to make nitrogen fertilizer, which dramatically boosts crop yields and is absolutely essential if the world is to feed eight billion people – especially without turning millions more acres of wildlife habitat into marginal croplands.

Poor countries are no long going to tolerate this outrageous, intolerable, racist neo-colonialism. Nor should they, especially when they realize now-rich countries are on the verge of de-industrialization and bankruptcy – and have neither the intention nor ability to shell out billions, much less trillions, of dollars in annual “reparation, loss and damage” payments for alleged impacts from manmade climate change.

So when the UN, now-rich countries and eco-pressure groups tell them there’ll be no financing for fossil fuels and modern agriculture – only for wind and solar energy, organic farming and “AgroEcology” – poor countries should just tell these purveyors of poverty, hunger, disease and death to buzz off. That would leave poor countries largely on their own.

But they have numerous advantages that their predecessors lacked: access to the incredible energy, agricultural, industrial, economic, medical, communication and other advances of recent centuries, especially during the fossil-fueled industrial era.

They simply need to chart their own destinies and utilize these advances. Every project they undertake will generate new wealth, innovation and self-confidence to undertake subsequent projects.

I’ve written about these callous eco-imperialists – these financiers and merchants of death – many times (here, here, here and here, for example).

Unfortunately, they never repent, never revise their lethal attitudes and policies. The global following they enjoy underscores how the ill-informed but well-intended really are led around by the well-informed but ill-intended – on climate, energy, agriculture and human rights.

Their AgroEcology schemes reject virtually the entire foundation of modern agriculture, which feeds feed billions of people with less acreage and water, using monoculture farming, carefully developed and tested chemical fertilizers and insecticides, biotechnology, hybrid seeds and mechanized equipment.

Instead, they demand “food sovereignty” – the “right” to “culturally appropriate” food produced through “ecologically sound and sustainable methods, in accord with AgroEcology policies – the kind that brought hunger and chaos to Sri Lanka.

They even vilify Golden Rice, which could end Vitamin A Deficiency, blindness and death among malnourished children.

Could the insanity and hypocrisy get any worse? Sadly – yes.

European leaders have been pleading with African nations to launch oil, gas and coal projects – for shipment to Europe. In their next breath, the EU Commission says supporting nitrogen fertilizer production in Africa would “clash” with EU climate goals.

The International Energy Agency worries that half of Sub-Saharan Africa’s population has no access to electricity. In its next breath, the IEA says stopping planetary overheating doesn’t allow for more African petroleum production.

Even more colonialist, Time magazine promotes the notion that “humans eating insects could help save the planet.” The New York Times extolls a new Julia Child “Joy of Cooking (Insects).” And a group of “renowned” African and European “ecology and nutrition experts” says climate change and other considerations make Africa “the perfect laboratory” for testing new ways to feed humanity – like turning lake flies from the Lake Victoria region into “crackers, muffins, meat loaves and sausages.”

COP-27 (or FLOP-27) claims to have reached another “historic milestone” in saving Planet Earth! But it’s all driven by unfounded hysteria about manmade climate cataclysms. Let’s all take a deep breath.

We certainly face climate fluctuations and extreme weather events – but no worse than in the past, and with no replicable, convincing evidence that manmade emissions have replaced natural forces. More importantly, we have far greater wealth, far more knowledge, far better technologies and resources than in the past – to help us adapt to climate changes, survive extreme weather events and rebuild afterward.

That’s infinitely preferable to blanketing the Earth with wind turbines, solar panels, battery modules, transmission lines, mines and factories to build the things – and processing plants to make bug burgers and other delicacies, in time for climate luminaries to enjoy them at COP-28.

Can’t we just be calm and rational (and thus colonialist?) just this once? Just asking.


European industry exodus to US looms, driven by green handouts and cheaper gas prices

Politicians warn of investment exodus across Atlantic, driven by US incentives and cheaper gas prices. The Biden administration’s most senior trade official told the FT that the EU should introduce more subsidies.

Northvolt, Europe’s great hope in the global battery wars, began life as a start-up focused on the continent. Now the Swedish group, backed by Volkswagen, BMW and Goldman Sachs, is looking to the US to expand production.

The reason for the pivot is the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). The US’s flagship green technology legislation, signed into law in August, would subsidise a factory in America by about $600mn-$800mn, according to Northvolt. That compares to €155mn in incentives on the table from Germany.

The IRA “is moving momentum a lot from Europe to the US”, Northvolt chief executive Peter Carlsson told the Financial Times, adding that it was not only affecting European companies. “There are new Asian players who are reallocating their strategic plans and investments to North America,” he said.

The combination of the Biden Administration’s $369bn package and high energy costs in Europe, where even after recent declines gas prices remain five times more expensive than in North America, is sounding alarm bells in EU capitals.

“I think we need a European wake-up on this point,” French president Emmanuel Macron told executives from domestic industrial companies such as glassmaker Saint-Gobain and cement maker Lafarge in a speech last week.

Germany’s economy minister, Robert Habeck, described the US support as “excessive” and “hoovering up investments from Europe”.

The EU has accused Washington of breaching World Trade Organization rules and set up a task force with the Biden administration to resolve their differences. It has asked for changes to nine provisions in the legislation involving subsidy programmes totalling $231bn, arguing they create a “race to the bottom” on handouts to business.

Brussels estimates the EU needs to boost annual investment by €520bn in the coming decade to meet its carbon reduction and environmental protection objectives.

While the IRA affects manufacturers in fields ranging from advanced machinery to heavy industry, EU executives are particularly concerned about the impact on the automotive sector. Only electric cars substantially made with parts from North America and assembled there will qualify for a $7,500 tax discount for consumers.

Europe is home to more than one-quarter of global EV production, and 20 per cent of the supply chain, according to the International Energy Agency. The US has just 10 per cent of EV production and 7 per cent of battery production capacity.

Luisa Santos, deputy director-general at BusinessEurope, a pan-European lobby group, said the US legislation had sent a “dangerous signal” that could encourage other jurisdictions to take protectionist measures.

Yet far from offering to extend the break to EU vehicles, Katherine Tai, the Biden administration’s most senior trade official, told the FT that the EU should introduce more subsidies.


Australia 1.47°C warmer than it was when national records began in 1910, State of the Climate Report reveals

Let's try a little logic here. If the Australian temperature is .37 of a degree above the global temperature of 1.1 degree then a significant part of the Australian warming is NOT due to global influences. That being so, how do we know that ANY of it is due to global influences? Both the global and Australian temperatures could be random fluctuations and probably are. Fluctuations are common in the long-term global record. Temperatures over the last 100 years or so are just a recent uptick from the Little Ice Age

Australia is 1.47°C hotter today than it was just over 100 years ago, putting it ahead of the global trend of 1.1°C of warming, the biennial State of the Climate report released on Wednesday reveals.

The report, from the Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO, revealed Australia as a whole is 1.47°C warmer than it was when national records began in 1910, although there is a margin of error of 0.24°C.

Most of that increase in warming has taken place since 1950, and every decade since the 1950s has been warmer than the one preceding it, the report stated.

Australia’s warming trend was seen across all months of the year, in both day time and night time temperatures, with a marked increase in the number of extremely hot days.

In 2019 – Australia’s hottest year – there were 41 extremely warm days, which the report said were “about triple the highest number in any year prior to 2000”.

While the temperature trend for the country has been uniform, with regards to rainfall the results are more mixed