Wednesday, February 08, 2023

Climate alarmism is 'robbing' students of hope, ambition, earth science professor says

Geological sciences professor, Dr. Matthew Wielicki, said adults pushing climate catastrophism are "robbing" young Americans of their "ambition and their hope."

Dr. Matthew Wielicki, a University of Alabama earth sciences professor, believes many STEM professionals overstate climate change's immediate effects, like warning of imminent and unavoidable catastrophes. He said such alarmism harms students' mental health.

"They’re only giving one side of the story," Wielicki told Fox News. "They’re catastrophizing or over-exaggerating that side to try to make a point because they claim the ends justify the means."

"I think scientific integrity is way more important," he said.

Wielicki believes political ideology infiltrating college classrooms, particularly diversity, equity and inclusion and climate alarmism, has tarnished the teaching profession. He said young climate activists, like Greta Thunberg, aren't the problem since they're only believing what they're told.

"I never blame the young people," he said. "I blame the adults that are experts in the field that sit and zip their mouths because they don't want to rock the boat."

Wielicki taught earth sciences at the University of Alabama for nearly eight years, fulfilling a lifelong dream to follow in his father’s footsteps as a college professor. Last month, he tweeted that he was resigning at the end of the semester because of the negative effects educators' political messaging was having on students.

"I loved science because it wasn't political," Wielicki told Fox News. "And now we're getting rid of that."

Over the past few years, he began noticing his students were increasingly distressed about climate issues.

"I started asking my students and polling my students and I realized they had an exactly upside-down view of the state of the climate," Wielicki said.

Students told Wielicki they didn't plan on starting a family or having children because they believed the planet would undergo some sort of geological catastrophe in the next decade.

"I felt like as an earth scientist, that's my community that isn't speaking up and is letting false narratives get out there," Wielicki said. "Al Gore up there saying the oceans will boil—there's no chance that the oceans will boil."

Wielicki believes there are threats from climate change but he feels they're being overstated by people who stand to benefit from green initiatives or who want to scare Americans into action. He said the scientific community's credibility will be damaged if STEM professionals continue to push biased narratives.

"There's going to be bigger challenges in the future and then people like me that are scientists—nobody is going to listen to us," Wielicki said. "We saw it with COVID, we're seeing it with climate."


Al Gore and the End of Climate Policy

Al Gore was right about one thing in his rant at the World Economic Forum in Davos: CO2 emissions have continued to climb and show no sign of being affected by “climate policy.”

He didn’t mention his own contributions to this outcome, intervening in the early Obama years to turn climate policy into an excuse for protectionist pork barrel, with no real effect on climate. Nor that he was the seminal author of a brand of green hyperventilation that almost guaranteed real climate action would become a polarizing dead letter.

He also didn’t mention his singular stroke of luck in the history books, which will let him off more kindly than he deserves because the science now paints a less dire picture of our climate future.

The climate press proved the point, amid his Alpine Vaudeville, by collapsing uncritically in front of a newly-released “Harvard” study allegedly revealing that Exxon 40 years ago predicted today’s warming with “breathtaking,” “stunning,” “astonishing” accuracy.

These adjectives aren’t in the study itself, which is merely tendentious, sponsored by the activists at the Rockefeller Family Fund. But the timing probably wasn’t an accident.

In fact, Exxon’s results were identical to those of other scientists because it collaborated with them. Its findings weren’t hidden “behind closed doors,” as one report alleged. They were published in peer-reviewed journals. Rather blatantly, to get to its desired result, the “Harvard” study attributed to Exxon outside research that its scientists merely “reported.”

This retread builds on Rockefeller’s previous greatest hit, paying journalists in 2016 to flaunt Exxon’s decades-old scientific efforts. Exxon was accused of “emphasizing the uncertainty” when uncertainty was the crucial scientific output. No matter what Exxon said, not sellable to policy makers at the time was spending unknown trillions to reduce future temperatures maybe by 4.5 degrees Celsius, maybe by 1.5 degrees. Yet this was the best guidance science could provide for four decades.

Rockefeller prefers to stress the $30 million Exxon once spent on climate-skeptical think tanks. This money, not the scientific uncertainty or humanity’s desire for cheap energy, explains the failure to enact meaningful CO2 reductions. It’s all Exxon’s fault.

OK, studies like this one sponsored by Rockefeller and served up by provocateurs at the Harvard history department and Germany’s Potsdam Institute exist to exploit media shallowness. They wouldn’t exist otherwise.

The hindsight fallacy abounds. Climate modelers, if their forecasts are borne out, can’t know if they were right for the right reasons or wrong reasons. The study also perilously juggles apples and oranges due to the difference between equilibrium and transient climate sensitivity. More to the point, nothing here redeems Rockefeller philanthropic money being poured down a Greta Thunberg rathole when real needs go unmet.

Never mind. After 40 years, an authoritative U.N. panel, which once shared Mr. Gore’s Nobel Prize, has made real progress on the uncertainty puzzle, not only narrowing the consensus range of likely climate outcomes, more importantly reducing the estimated risk of worst-case warming.

This upshot of its long-awaited Sixth Assessment Report in 2021-22 goes unreported by the same press that gobbles up Rockefeller’s Exxon hate-mongering. It significantly uprates the likelihood that human society will weather the expected changes handily. In turn, as I noted recently, scientists have been able to refocus usefully on outlier risks and geoengineering solutions if those outlier risks should materialize.

Hooray. This is progress. In the meantime, though, thanks to Rockefeller, Mr. Gore and others, we ended up with policy option C—spend X trillion to have no effect on climate. Our obsessive focus on green energy subsidies pleases many constituents but incentivizes more energy consumption overall. After all, the human appetite for energy is limitless if the price is right. Meanwhile, unused and even denigrated by the left is the only tool that was ever likely to reduce meaningfully the path of emissions, a carbon tax.

Oh well. Climate policy is effectively over and that’s probably fine. The energy machine will certainly incorporate new technologies, including renewables; there won’t be a major shift in emissions from the path they would have taken anyway.

Mr. Gore will continue his angry prophet act. Politics will continue to fuel a sacred pork scramble. The climate press will balance on its noses whatever memes are tossed its way. And humanity will adapt to the climate it gets,


Green Fail: Dozens of Windmills Bailed Out by Diesel Generators - And Look What They Sprayed Into the Countryside

Dozens of wind turbines in Scotland recently failed because of cold weather and were bailed out by the same fossil fuels the green energy mob would like us to believe can and should be eliminated.

The latest black eye for hardline advocates for renewable energy occurred in December when 71 turbines were hooked up to diesel generators to keep them warm after they failed to function appropriately in frigid temperatures, according to Glasgow’s Daily Record.

The report said the turbines froze up, siphoned away more power than they generated, and in some cases polluted the country’s beautiful countryside and waterways with hydraulic fluid.

An anonymous whistleblower described as a worker with electricity provider Scottish Power spoke up about the incident.

“The Scottish Government wants to make our country attractive to foreign investors as 40 percent of the wind that blows across Europe blows across Scotland,” the worker said, according to the Daily Record. “However, that should not mean we put up with our waterways and nature being polluted with carbon from diesel generators and hydraulic oil.”

The whistleblower also complained that Scottish Power’s wind turbines regularly experience issues or otherwise fail to protect the environment they were supposedly installed to preserve.

“Turbines are regularly offline due to faults where they are taking energy from the grid rather than producing it, and also left operating on half power for long periods due to parts which haven’t been replaced,” the person said.

“Dirty hydraulic oil is also regularly being sprayed out across the Scottish countryside due to cracks in mechanisms.”

A spokesman for Scottish Power admitted diesel generators were used to keep the turbines functioning as a temporary solution.

Of course, it is more than interesting that we are only hearing about this story now, months after the fact.

Environmental extremists and the establishment media are more or less on the same page with regard to pushing ineffective renewables onto the world.

Pipe dreams take precedence over pipelines.

But stories such as these prove two facts that are irrefutable: Green energy technology is not yet ready to power the world, and the powers that be don’t want the rest of us to know it.

Thankfully, no fatalities were reported during Scotland’s frigid early December.

Sadly, more than 200 people lost their lives in Texas two years ago after the state’s independent power grid failed. In February 2021, a historic winter storm disabled much of the state’s green energy infrastructure. Millions lost power, and many froze to death during a tragedy that largely could have been avoided had common sense prevailed.

If science could find a way to harness wishful thinking, the green lobby would have powered the globe with it decades ago.

Scotland relied on diesel fuel to bail out its wind turbines in the same manner many electrical vehicle drivers here in the U.S. have been seen using gasoline generators to charge up their supposedly “clean” cars.


E-car sales plummet in Germany following subsidy cut

Registrations of new electric vehicles collapsed in Germany following cuts in buyers’ premiums at the beginning of the year. Registrations for battery electric vehicles dropped about 83 percent to 18,100 in January from 104,300 in December, when many people rushed to receive the full subsidy, according to the Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA). The share of e-cars fell to 15 percent in January from more than 55 percent in December, while total car registrations dropped three percent, car industry association VDA said.

The government decided in mid-2022 to reduce support payments for new e-cars, arguing they had become increasingly attractive for buyers even without support payments. Last year, e-car buyers received up 6,000 euros from the state when buying a new vehicle, plus up to 3,000 euros from the car manufacturers themselves. At the start of this year, support for battery electric or fuel cell cars dropped to 3,000-4,500 euros.

The lower support rates are likely to dampen e-car sales throughout the year, VDA said. In total, it expects sales of about 510,000 battery electric vehicles in 2023, eight percent more than last year; and sales of about 250,000 plug-in hybrid cars, a drop of 30 percent compared to 2022. On balance, total EV sales will fall by eight percent this year, the lobby group estimated. Given the lower support payments, “it’s important to strengthen people’s trust in e-mobility in different ways” to keep e-car sales up, VDA head Hildegard Müller said




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