June 30, 2009
Senator John THune (R) South Dakota
Over the past several years we have learned that small groups of people can engage in mass suicide. In 1978, 918 members of the Peoples' Temple led by Jim Jones perished after drinking poisoned koolaid. In 1997, 39 members of the Heaven's Gate cult died after drugging themselves and tieing plastic bags around their heads. Unfortunately, history also demonstrates that it is possible for an entire civilization to commit suicide by intentionally destroying the means of its subsistence.
In the early nineteenth century, the British colonized Southeast Africa. The native Xhosa resisted, but suffered repeated and humiliating defeats at the hands of British military forces. The Xhosa lost their independence and their native land became an English colony. The British adopted a policy of westernizing the Xhosa. They were to be converted to Christianity, and their native culture and religion was to be wiped out. Under the stress of being confronted by a superior and irresistible technology, the Xhosa developed feelings of inadequacy and inferiority. In this climate, a prophet appeared.
In April of 1856, a fifteen-year-old girl named Nongqawuse heard a voice telling her that the Xhosa must kill all their cattle, stop cultivating their fields, and destroy their stores of grain and food. The voice insisted that the Xhosa must also get rid of their hoes, cooking pots, and every utensil necessary for the maintenance of life. Once these things were accomplished, a new day would magically dawn. Everything necessary for life would spring spontaneously from the earth. The dead would be resurrected. The blind would see and the old would have their youth restored. New food and livestock would appear in abundance, spontaneously sprouting from the earth. The British would be swept into the sea, and the Xhosa would be restored to their former glory. What was promised was nothing less than the establishment of paradise on earth.
Nongqawuse told this story to her guardian and uncle, Mhlakaza. At first, the uncle was skeptical. But he became a believer after accompanying his niece to the spot where she heard the voices. Although Mhlakaza heard nothing, he became convinced that Nongqawuse was hearing the voice of her dead father, and that the instructions must be obeyed. Mhlakaza became the chief prophet and leader of the cattle-killing movement.
News of the prophecy spread rapidly, and within a few weeks the Xhosa king, Sarhili, became a convert. He ordered the Xhosa to slaughter their cattle and, in a symbolic act, killed his favorite ox. As the hysteria widened, other Xhosa began to have visions. Some saw shadows of the resurrected dead arising from the sea, standing in rushes on the river bank, or even floating in the air. Everywhere that people looked, they found evidence to support what they desperately wanted to be true.
The believers began their work in earnest. Vast amounts of grain were taken out of storage and scattered on the ground to rot. Cattle were killed so quickly and on such an immense scale that vultures could not entirely devour the rotting flesh. The ultimate number of cattle that the Xhosa slaughtered was 400,000. After killing their livestock, the Xhosa built new, larger kraals to hold the marvelous new beasts that they anticipated would rise out of the earth. The impetus of the movement became irresistible.
The resurrection of the dead was predicted to occur on the full moon of June, 1856. Nothing happened. The chief prophet of the cattle-killing movement, Mhlakaza, moved the date to the full moon of August. But again the prophecy was not fulfilled.
The cattle-killing movement now began to enter a final, deadly phase, which its own internal logic dictated as inevitable. The failure of the prophecies was blamed on the fact that the cattle-killing had not been completed. Most believers had retained a few cattle, chiefly consisting of milk cows that provided an immediate and continuous food supply. Worse yet, there was a minority community of skeptical non-believers who refused to kill their livestock.
The fall planting season came and went. Believers threw their spades into the rivers and did not sow a single seed in the ground. By December of 1856, the Xhosa began to feel the pangs of hunger. They scoured the fields and woods for berries and roots, and attempted to eat bark stripped from trees. Mhlakaza set a new date of December 11 for the fulfillment of the prophecy. When the anticipated event did not occur, unbelievers were blamed.
The resurrection was rescheduled yet again for February 16, 1857, but the believers were again disappointed. Even this late, the average believer still had three or four head of livestock alive. The repeated failure of the prophecies could only mean that the Xhosa had failed to fulfill the necessary requirement of killing every last head of cattle. Now, they finally began to complete the killing process. Not only cattle were slaughtered, but also chickens and goats. Any viable means of sustenance had to be destroyed. Any cattle that might have escaped earlier killing were now slaughtered for food.
Serious famine began in late spring of 1857. All the food was gone. The starving population broke into stables and ate horse food. They gathered bones that had lay bleaching in the sun for years and tried to make soup. They ate grass. Maddened by hunger, some resorted to cannibalism. Weakened by starvation, family members often had to lay and watch dogs devour the corpses of their spouses and children. Those who did not die directly from hunger fell prey to disease. To the end, true believers never renounced their faith. They simply starved to death, blaming the failure of the prophecy on the doubts of non-believers.
By the end of 1858, the Xhosa population had dropped from 105,000 to 26,000. Forty to fifty-thousand people starved to death, and the rest migrated. With Xhosa civilization destroyed, the land was cleared for white settlement. The British found that those Xhosa who survived proved to be docile and useful servants. What the British Empire had been unable to accomplish in more than fifty years of aggressive colonialism, the Xhosa did to themselves in less than two years.
Western civilization now stands on the brink of repeating the experience of the Xhosa. Since the advent of the Industrial Revolution in the late eighteenth century, Europe and North America have enjoyed the greatest prosperity ever known on earth. Life expectancy has doubled. In a little more than two hundred years, every objective measure of human welfare has increased more than in all of previous human history.
But Western Civilization is coasting on an impetus provided by our ancestors. There is scarcely anyone alive in Europe or America today who believes in the superiority of Western society. Guilt and shame hang around our necks like millstones, dragging our emasculated culture to the verge of self-immolation. Whatever faults the British Empire-builders may have had, they were certain of themselves.
Our forefathers built a technological civilization based on energy provided by carbon-based fossil fuels. Without the inexpensive and reliable energy provided by coal, oil, and gas, our civilization would quickly collapse. The prophets of global warming now want us to do precisely that.
Like the prophet Mhlakaza, Al Gore promises that if we stop using carbon-based energy, new energy technologies will magically appear. The laws of physics and chemistry will be repealed by political will power. We will achieve prosperity by destroying the very means by which prosperity is created.
While Western Civilization sits confused, crippled with self-doubt and guilt, the Chinese are rapidly building an energy-intensive technological civilization. They have 2,000 coal-fired power plants, and are currently constructing new ones at the rate of one a week. In China, more people believe in free-market economics than in the US. Our Asian friends are about to be nominated by history as the new torchbearers of human progress.
May 13, 2009
David Deming [send him mail] is associate professor of Arts and Sciences at the University of Oklahoma.
Copyright © 2009 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given
I wonder if anyone really thinks about what the world was like before this stuff froze? I mean if it thawing is going to wreak havoc on the world, what havoc did it wreak when it was not frozen? Are we to believe that the ice ages which froze this stuff caused the world to bloom into a vast biodiversified garden of Eden ? Now a slight warming will unleash this menace that was fortuitiously frozen for centuries. This scourge locked away, allowing the Earth to create vast tropical rain forest where most of life on our planet resides, but will now be exterminated by this unleashed toxin CO2
A Slurpee for the uninformed is a frozen carbonated drink, found at the local 7-11. Oh and yes it comes in Super Size
Super-size deposits of frozen carbon threat to climate change: study
WASHINGTON, June 30 (Xinhua) -- The vast amount of carbon stored in the arctic and boreal regions of the world is more than double that previously estimated, according to a study published this week in Global Biogeochemical Cycles, a journal of American Geophysical Union.
The amount of carbon in frozen soils, sediments and river deltas (permafrost) raises new concerns over the role of the northern regions as future sources of greenhouse gases.
"We now estimate the deposits contain over 1.5 trillion tons of frozen carbon, about twice as much carbon as contained in the atmosphere," said Dr. Charles Tarnocai, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Ottawa, and lead author.
Dr. Pep Canadell, Executive Director of the Global Carbon Project at CSIRO, Australia, and co-author of the study says that the existence of these super-sized deposits of frozen carbon means that any thawing of permafrost due to global warming may lead to significant emissions of the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane.
Carbon deposits frozen thousands of years ago can easily break down when permafrost thaws releasing greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, according to another recent study by some of the same authors.
"Radioactive carbon dating shows that most of the carbon dioxide currently emitted by thawing soils in Alaska was formed and frozen thousands of years ago. The carbon dating demonstrates how easily carbon decomposes when soils thaw under warmer conditions," said Professor Ted Schuur, University of Florida and co-author of the paper.
The authors point out the large uncertainties surrounding the extent to which permafrost carbon thawing could further accelerate climate change.
"Permafrost carbon is a bit of a wildcard in the efforts to predict future climate change," said Dr. Canadell. "All evidence to date shows that carbon in permafrost is likely to play a significant role in the 21st century climate given the large carbon deposits, the readiness of its organic matter to release greenhouse gases when thawed, and the fact that high latitudes will experience the largest increase in air temperature of all regions."
Carbon in permafrost is found largely in northern regions including Canada, Greenland, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Russia, Scandinavia and the United States.
Horatio: He waxes desperate with imagination.
Marcellus: Let's follow. 'Tis not fit thus to obey him.
Horatio: Have after. To what issue will this come?
Marcellus: Something is rotten in the state of Denmark.
Horatio: Heaven will direct it.
Marcellus: Nay, let's follow him.
Real Climate posted a weblog on June 21 2009 titled “A warning from Copenhagen”. They report on a Synthesis Report of the Copenhagen Congress which was handed over to the Danish Prime Minister Rasmussen in Brussels the previous week.
Real Climate writes
“So what does it say? Our regular readers will hardly be surprised by the key findings from physical climate science, most of which we have already discussed here. Some aspects of climate change are progressing faster than was expected a few years ago - such as rising sea levels, the increase of heat stored in the ocean and the shrinking Arctic sea ice. “The updated estimates of the future global mean sea level rise are about double the IPCC projections from 2007″, says the new report. And it points out that any warming caused will be virtually irreversible for at least a thousand years - because of the long residence time of CO2 in the atmosphere.”
First, what is “physical climate science”? How is this different from “climate science”. In the past, this terminology has been used when authors ignore the biological components of the climate system.
More importantly, however, the author of the weblog makes the statement that the following climate metrics “are progressing faster than was expected a few years ago” ;
NOT TRUE; e.g. see the University of Colorado at Boulder Sea Level Change analysis.
Sea level has actually flattened since 2006.
NOT TRUE; see
Media and policymakers who blindly accept these claims are either naive or are deliberately slanting the science to promote their particular advocacy position.
Even though this is what the peer reviewed literature says, acknowledging as much is enough to get you labeled a "denier." We do live in interesting times.
Roger A. Pielke, Jr.
General Electric is getting yet more taxpayer money, possibly laundered federal money, to subsidize its business.
A GE press release announced that the state of Michigan will provide GE with $60 million to build a $100 million “technology & software center” — what used to be known as an “office building.”
While the source of the Michigan subsidy could be Michigan taxpayers, given how strapped the state is from auto industry losses, it’s quite possible that the Obama administration is funneling U.S. taxpayer money through Michigan to GE.
Michigan’s budget problems are so severe, after all, that the state has offered to house prisoners from California’s burgeoning prisons.
We reported in May that GE received $55 million in taxpayer subsidies to build a hybrid locomotive battery plant in New York.
You can almost hear GE CEO Jeff Immelt, who sits on President Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board, chanting to the President, “Give me the money.” In return, Immelt, the new corporate welfare queen, is helping Presdient Obama advance his global warming and health care agendas.
Assessment of Minister Wong’s "Written Reply
to Senator Fielding’s Three Questions on Climate Change"
Bob Carter, David Evans, Stewart Franks and William Kininmonth
Emissions trading legislation, such as the “Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme” (CPRS) bills that are currently before Parliament, rest upon the assumption that human greenhouse emissions, especially carbon dioxide, (i) are pollutants, and (ii) are causing dangerous global warming. Neither of these assumptions are supported by empirical evidence, and both have been under scientific challenge for many years by a large body of qualified and independent scientists.
Cognisant of these facts, Senator Steve Fielding has posed three direct questions to the Minister for Climate Change, Senator Penny Wong, in order to clarify whether or not evidence exists that human carbon dioxide emissions are causing dangerous global warming, as alleged by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Minister Wong agreed to address these questions, first, through discussion at a meeting held between the Senators, ourselves and ministerial science advisors Professor Penny Sackett (Chief Scientist) and Professor Will Steffen (Director, ANU Climate Change Institute); at this meeting, an 11-page background presentation was made by Drs. Sackett and Steffen. And, second, by form of written reply, which was provided to Senator Fielding on June 18th.
We provide in this paper an assessment of Minister Wong’s written reply to each of Senator Fielding's three questions. A more exhaustive paper covering these questions, and other issues arising from the meetings between Senator Fielding and Minister Wong, is covered in the paper titled "Minister Wong’s Reply to Senator Fielding’s Three Questions on Climate Change – A Commentary".More...
Is it the case that CO2 increased by 5% since 1998 whilst global temperature cooled over the same period (see Fig. 1)?
If so, why did the temperature not increase; and how can human emissions be to blame for dangerous levels of warming?
The government's response to this question queried whether global average temperature is an appropriate indicator of global climate, and listed circumstantial evidence for regional planetary warming.
1. What is the most appropriate measure of planetary climate?
1.1. The government’s reply says “When climate change scientists talk about global warming they mean warming of the climate system as a whole, which includes the atmosphere, the oceans, and the cryosphere”, and then adds “in terms of a single indicator of global warming, change in ocean heat content is most appropriate”.
1.2. We agree that in an ideal academic discussion, and were accurate historical data available, ocean heat content might be a better criterion by which to judge global warming than would be atmospheric temperature. Use of this indicator was first pressed strongly by Pielke (2007, 2009) as a test of the dangerous warming hypothesis, but it has not been widely publicized by the IPCC.
1.3. In any case, however, Senator Fielding’s question was predicated upon the history of IPCC’s public advice, which has consistently used the UK Hadley Centre near-surface air temperature record since 1850 as a measure of global warming. This near-surface air temperature record is the one that dominates in IPCC and government policy papers and discussion, and is the criterion of judgement that both politicians and the public are familiar with.
1. 4. As illustrated in Fielding (June 15, Fig. 1), the Hadley temperature record does not exhibit warming after 1998.
2. Natural variability in air temperatures
2.1. The government asserts that “at time scales of around a decade, natural variability can mask the atmospheric warming trend caused by the increasing concentration of greenhouse gases”.
2.2. It is widely agreed that there is considerable natural variability in air temperature on decadal timescales and longer. It is the IPCC who have previously denied the effect of natural variability.
For example, the 2001 Summary for Policymakers claimed, based on computer model simulations, that the climate system has only a limited internal variability. In turn, this claim was, and is, used to underpin the argument that carbon dioxide forcing is the only plausible explanation for the late 20th century warming trend.
For the government to now invoke natural variability as an explanation for the elapsed temperature curve is to destroy the credibility of their previous arguments for carbon dioxide forcing.
2.3. The government also claims that “in terms of the climate system as a whole, only about 5 percent of the warming since 1960 has taken place in the air”.
2.4. Using the Hadley CRU temperature record, the rise in air temperature since 1960 has been about 0.5oC. Translating the 15x1022 J of additional heat in the upper 700 m of ocean since 1960 into a temperature rise, we find that this corresponds to an increase in upper ocean temperature of only 0.15oC.
Thus, using these metrics, air temperature increase since 1960 has been more than three times greater than ocean temperature increase.
3. Ocean heat content
3.1. The government alleges that “in terms of a single indicator of global warming, change in ocean heat content is most appropriate”.
3.2. In reality, given present instrumental networks, ocean heat content is an unrealistic metric to use to judge climate change.
A 0.15oC increase in average ocean temperature (see 2.4) is not statistically significant when viewed against the known limited precision of the XBT instruments, and the temporal and spatial paucity of observations before the deployment of ARGOS buoys.
There remains controversy about the calibration of the ARGOS buoys, which we discuss in our more detailed paper.
4. Ice, snow and frozen ground
4.1. The government describes a number of regional changes in ice and snow distribution, and comments, without citation, that “overall the amount [global implied] of ice, snow and frozen ground has declined”.
4.2. So far as we are aware, no accurate inventory exists of the worldwide volume of modern ice and snow, let alone over the millennial history that is required in order to judge whether observed modern changes are unusual. As Idso & Singer (2009, p. 136) note, “global data on glaciers do not support claims made by the IPCC that most glaciers are retreating or melting”.
In the absence of such historical records, descriptions of melting ice in particular areas are indicative only of a negative precipitation:melt mass balance in those areas, and circumstantial so far as global change or the cause of melting are concerned. In attributing areas of melting to a human greenhouse effect, the government is making the common error of failing to distinguish between the occurrence of warming and the identification of its cause.
4.3. As the government notes, different trends occur in different areas. For example a post-2000 retreat of Arctic sea-ice parallels a similar melting that occurred in the 1930s, whereas at the same time sea-ice around Antarctica has increased to an all time high of >1 million km2 above the long-term average. Apart from the small region of the Antarctic Peninsula there is no evidence of warming over Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.
4.4. The latest available data indicates - in the context of the large annual cycle of variation, and the observed decline during 2007 and 2008 - no global trend in sea-ice cover. Arctic sea ice extent today is similar to that in 1979, when satellite observations commenced, and at the same time sea-ice cover around Antarctica is currently enhanced in area.
4.5. Finally, there is no particular reason to view contemporary values of sea-ice cover as representing a climatic ideal.
Historical records point to much less sea ice over the Arctic Ocean during the 1920s and 1930s, and to several prior openings of the Northwest Passage. And, of course, Greenland was much warmer in the 10th and 11th centuries when there were approximately 3,000 individual settlements and farmlets. As the cold of the Little Ice Age set in thereafter, none of these settlements survived beyond 1550 and some sites remain frozen today.
5. The basis of the IPCC assessment
5.1. The government asserts that “The argument presented in Q1 above is not new and has been thoroughly refuted by a very wide range of observations”.
5.2. No argument is presented in Question 1. Rather a simple question and its supplementary are asked.
5.3. The government also points out that IPCC’s 4AR (Summary for PolicyMakers, p. 5) concluded that: “Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, as is now evident from observations of increases in average air and ocean temperatures, widespread melting of snow and ice, and rising global average sea-level”.
5.4. The IPCC passage that is quoted is an underwhelming conclusion which was apparent long before the IPCC even existed, and anyway says nothing about the cause of any warming. Scientists have known for more than one hundred years that earth’s climate has warmed since the depth of the Little Ice Age during the 17th century. Indeed, the climate system had already undergone considerable warming before the establishment of a global network of observing stations in the late 19th century, which first allowed for the systematic monitoring of near-surface air temperature.
The key questions are not whether the climate system has warmed during the 20th century, but rather (i) whether the warming terminated in 1998 (Question 1); (iii) whether the warming was unusual in rate and magnitude (Question 2); and (ii) the degree to which the warming might have been caused by human carbon dioxide emissions (Questions 2 and 3). These questions are those that were posed by Senator Fielding, and they remain unanswered by the government.
Is it the case that the rate and magnitude of warming between 1979 and 1998 (the late 20th century phase of global warming) were not unusual as compared with warmings that have occurred earlier in the Earth's history (Fig. 2a, 2b)?
If the warming was not unusual, why is it perceived to have been caused by human CO2 emissions; and, in any event, why is warming a problem if the Earth has experienced similar warmings in the past?
The government responded, citing ice-core data, that today’s magnitude and rate of temperature change was unusual, that the last 2,000 years of climatic history is more relevant to humans than deep-time history, that strong evidence exists that post-1850 warming was caused primarily by human greenhouse emissions, and (after Garnaut) that the costs of adapting to climate change in Australia may be more expensive than attempting to abate it.
6. Rate and magnitude of change
6.1. Judgements about rate and magnitude of temperature change through deep time, i.e. prior to instrumental measurement, have to be made using proxy data (such as temperature-related oxygen isotope measurements) for particular sites or regions.
Global warming between the last glacial maximum and the Holocene varied according to region. Ice cores from Vostok, Antarctica suggest a temperature rise of about 12oC; from Greenland the ice cores suggest much greater warming still. In contrast, isotopic analysis of sea bed cores from the warmest oceans around Indonesia suggests a temperature rise of only 2-4oC in tropical regions (and note that a 1oC increase in tropical ocean temperatures is accompanied by a natural increase in of about 7% in global evaporation and precipitation).
6.2. Figs. 2a, b of Fielding (June 15th) reproduce data from two such proxy deep-time temperature records. As explained in their captions, these records show that the rates (1-20C/century) and magnitudes (about 0.80C warming since the last cold phase of the Little Ice Age) of historical climate change fall well within prior natural limits.
This is especially the case if the Dansgaard-Oeschger (D/O) events referred to by the government are taken into account, irrespective of the debate (which continues) as to the degree to which such climatic events are worldwide or restricted to particular regions.
6.3. D/O events are sudden, step increases in the northern Atlantic and Greenland region temperature of more than 10oC over decades, followed within centuries by rapid cooling again.
The Arctic is a region where more infrared radiation is emitted to space than is absorbed from incoming solar radiation. This local radiation imbalance is corrected by the transport of energy from the tropics to sustain local temperatures. Sudden increases in local temperatures arise from changes in this equator to pole energy exchange, which is modulated by a combination of changes in wind pattern, changes in ocean currents and changes in atmospheric circulation. Such changes in poleward energy transport are similar to an El Nino event, and are at least hemispheric in scope. Indeed, the typical Atlantic D/O climatic patterning is present in some Antarctic ice cores.
7. Climate record of the last 2,000 years
7.1. The government writes that “in terms of timescales of importance for humans, the last 2,000 years are most relevant, because this is the period over which our civilisations have developed”.
This statement reflects simple anthropomorphic bias, for there is nothing “typical” or “special” about the climate of the last 2,000 years. Understanding climate change in context requires the study of climatic records that cover at least hundreds of thousands of years.
7.2. The government reproduces an IPCC figure of Northern Hemisphere air temperatures over the last 1800 years. This figure represents a variety of proxy (mostly tree ring) temperature histories that are joined together with the (UHI-influenced) 20th century temperature record and a speculative further “ ’committed’ additional temperature rise due to the thermal inertia of the ocean”.
7.3. One of the proxy temperature series plotted is the infamous “hockey stick” reconstruction of Mann et al. (1999). This reconstruction is discredited (e.g., McIntyre & McKitrick, 2003, 2005, 2009).
7.5. Disturbingly, the government continues to exhibit the “hockey stick” graph on its website.
7.6. In general, the proxy reconstruction of ancient temperatures only provides a smoothed representation of the temperature trends and that at a local or regional level. The interpretation of tree rings, etc cannot discriminate the same detail as direct observations of temperature.
Thus it is poor practice to append a global instrumental record to the young end of a series of proxy geological records. Such a construction amplifies recent temperature trends without scientific foundation.
7.7. Abundant historic and geological data shows that warming events associated with the Minoan, Greco-Roman and Medieval Warm Periods occur on a millennial, perhaps solar, climatic cycle (Bond et al., 2001; Singer & Avery, 2008), and were at least as warm as the late 20th century warming. These warmer periods were interrupted by the colder Dark Ages of the middle first millennium and the Little Ice Age of the second millennium, and such climatic rhythmicity must be controlled by major variations in equator to pole energy transport, i.e. is not primarily driven by carbon dioxide variations.
8. The greenhouse effect
8.1. The government asserts that “The greenhouse effect is a well-understood physical phenomenon, like gravity”.
8.2. The greenhouse effect is indeed a real phenomenon that lends itself to measurement. The intrinsic nature of gravity, however, is not understood. In contrast, the intrinsic nature the greenhouse effect is well understood; but it is often misrepresented, as it is in the government’s summary statement.
8.3. A fuller explanation and discussion on the greenhouse effect is provided in our more detailed paper.
9. Empirical relationship between change in radiative forcing and global air temperature
9.1. The government reports that a general relationship between radiative forcing and temperature rise can be derived by an “analysis of the climatic shift between the last ice age and the present warm period”, and that “this relationship includes all feedbacks within the climate system in an empirical way that is derived without using models”.
9.2. Analysis of the climate shift between the last ice age and the present warm period cannot give a quantitative relationship between the change in radiative forcing and the resulting change in global air temperature.
This is so because the influences of Earth’s orbital changes versus the feedback effect as Earth warmed, and the oceans expelled more carbon dioxide, are not known.
9.3. Furthermore, if carbon dioxide forcing is as powerful as is being suggested, then the question has to be asked: “Why did each of the interglacial warming events of the past ~500,000 years stabilise at about the same temperature?” For several recent interglacials were significantly warmer than the Holocene interglacial (e.g., Watanabe et al., 2003), which should require the Earth to have already have passed the so-called tipping point of irreversible warming on more than one occasion.
9.4. As we understand it, the paper that first formalised the concept of a “CO2 forcing parameter” in the fashion referred to by the government was that by Hansen et al. (1988).
Hansen et al.’s forcing parameter has no physical basis in measurement. Rather, the assumption was made that the ~100 ppm post-industrial increase in carbon dioxide was directly responsible for the increase in global temperature of 0.60C that has been measured over the past century.
9.5. Over the 20th century, both cooling and warming phases were concurrent with rising carbon dioxide levels, and the 1988 paper was published 13 years after a 33 year cooling trend that was paralleled by an increase in carbon dioxide concentration. Essentially, in the 46 year period from 1942 to 1988, when the paper was published, saw 33 years of cooling and only 13 years of warming concurrent with increases in carbon dioxide, yet the models used a forcing parameter that directly related only the warming to concentration increases.
Also, in calculating the carbon dioxide forcing parameter no allowance was made for the likely contribution that the urban heat island effect made to the (thermometer) measured warming.
9.6. Therefore, (i) there is no valid basis for the assumed carbon dioxide forcing parameter, (ii) the parameter has a built in warming overestimate, and (iii) climate CGMs that apply the parameter are inaccurate.
10. Costs of adaptation could be high: but not as high as those of unnecessary precaution
10.1. The government asserts that “The Garnaut Review also found that the climate change impacts on infrastructure will have a significant effect on Australia’s output and consumption of goods and services, and that the costs of adaptation could be high”.
10.2. The Garnaut Report, like the heavily criticized Stern report that preceded it (Carter et al., 2006), contains no credible science assessment but simply uncritically accepts IPCC science advice as a given. For that reason alone, the economic analysis in the report is of little value.
First, the report presumes that late 20th century warming will continue unabated throughout the 2ist century, which is already known to be wrong.
Second, the report adopts a precautionary approach in a situation where the potential hazard – future warming or cooling - is quite unknown.
The pitfalls of adopting a precautionary approach to an assumed hazard, rather than a prudent approach to known hazards, are explained in our fuller paper.
Is it the case that all GCM computer models projected a steady increase in temperature for the period 1990-2008, whereas in fact there were only 8 years of warming were followed by 10 years of stasis and cooling. (Fig. 3)?
If so, why is it assumed that long-term climate projections by the same models are suitable as a basis for public policy making?
The government pointed out that the model averages plotted in many IPCC diagrams result in a smoothing of the simulated natural variations that are present in individual GCM model runs. This has the effect of suppressing the episodic short periods of cooling that are simulated by most models.
11. Natural climate variations
11.1. It is indeed clearly the case that individual GCM model runs simulate natural variability in a way which includes the depiction of periods of several years to a decade or so of cooling within a temperature projection that nonetheless progressively rises.
But in concluding that “GCMs can and do simulate decade-long periods of warming or even slight cooling embedded in longer-term warming trends” the government is implying that the lack of warming since 1998 is caused by a natural cooling forcing of sufficient strength to temporarily overcome the assumed longer-term carbon dioxide-forced warming.
11.2. Hitherto, the IPCC (e.g. 3AR, 2001) has argued that the climate system possesses only limited internal variability, which is why carbon dioxide forcing came to assume especial significance in their eyes.
11.3. The climate system varies on a range of timescales from the interannual (El Nino-La Nina) through the decadal (e.g., Pacific Decadal Oscillation, North Atlantic Oscillation), the multi-centennial (eg, the Mediaeval Warm Period-Little Ice Age) to multi-millennial (glacial-interglacial). The shorter timescale oscillations are manifest as internal variability, and are not incorporated in the GCMs.
So even if the models do simulate some variability in global temperatures, they cannot be doing it for the correct reason, and any short-term variability that they happen to predict “right” must be either by chance or for the wrong reasons. And that individual GCMs may project periods of cooling as long as 10 years has no necessary bearing on the cause of the current cooling trend.
11.4. We conclude that there is no reason to call upon carbon dioxide forcing to explain the recent limited warming that occurred between 1979 and 1998, and that the computer-based projections that show progressive warming through the 21st century are highly misleading scenarios to provide to policymakers.
In essence, to now acknowledge that there is significant internal variability to the climate system is to destroy the plausibility of anthropogenic global warming alarmism.
Bond, G., Kromer, B., Beer, J., Muscheler, R., Evans, M.N., Showers, W., Hoffmann, S., Lotti-Bond, R., Hajdas, I. & Bonani, G. (2001) Persistent solar influence on North Atlantic climate during the Holocene. Science, 294, 2130-2136.
Carter, R.M., de Freitas, C.R., Goklany, I.M., Holland, D. & Lindzen, R. (2006) The Stern Review: A Dual Critique. Part I: The Science. World Economics, 7, 165-198.
Hansen et al. (1988) Global Climate Changes as Forecast by Goddard Institute for Space Studies Three-Dimensional Model. Journal of Geophysical Research, 93, 9341-9364.
Idso, C. & Singer, F.S. (2009) Climate Change Reconsidered. Repor-t of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC). Heartland Institute, 855 + 12 pp.
Mann ME, Bradley RS, Hughes MK (1999) Northern hemisphere temperatures during the past millennium: inferences, uncertainties, and limitations. Geophysical Research Letters 26:759–762
McIntyre, S. & McKitrick, R. 2003 Corrections to the Mann et al. (1998) proxy database and northern hemispheric average temperature series. Energy & Environment, 14, 751-771.
McIntyre, S. & McKitrick, R. (2005) Hockey sticks, principal components, and spurious significance. Geophysical Research Letters, 32, doi 10.1029/2004GL021750, 5 pp.
McIntyre, S. & McKitrick, R. (2009) The M&M Project: Replication Analysis of the Mann et al. Hockey Stick here and here.
Pielke Sr., R.A. (2007) A Litmus Test For Global Warming – A Much Overdue Requirement.
Singer, S.F. & Avery, D.T. (2008, 2nd ed.) Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years.
Watanabe, O., Jouzel, J., Johnsen, S., Parrenin, F., Shoji, H. & Yoshida, N. (2003) Homogeneous climate variability across East Antarctic over the past three glacial cycles. Nature, 422, 509-512.
June 29, 2009
FROM-North Lake Tahoe Bonanza
Guest Column: Global 'warn'ing needs to stop
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — The distortions and questionable science associated with claiming that global warming is a man-made phenomenon are alarming. Having worked with many computer models I know that contrary to what analysts often present, computer models do not generate data and are very difficult to prove valid without significant testing. Most often models simply provide a guide. I question that the current global warming models even include all the important parameters, much less are proven.
I worked more than 40 years in the field of infrared technology and systems, with extensive experience with the effects of atmospheric transmission throughout the electromagnetic spectrum. Recently I was honored by the Passive Sensors Specialty Group of the classified Military Sensors Symposium, by having their annual achievement award named the Sendall-Rosell Achievement Award. This honor was to recognize the technical contributions of the late Frederick Rosell (Westinghouse) and myself as long time leaders and experts in the field of infrared systems.
The planet has been experiencing a warming trend since the Ice Age. This warming trend has not been manmade and has had many short-term cooling trends (like we appear to have started the past few years). Since these trends are also reported for other planets in the solar system they are more likely related to solar activity than any influence of man.
The spectral absorption lines of carbon dioxide at best block a very small amount of radiation from being radiated back into space. By far the most dominant greenhouse affects are from water vapor; and clouds can even have an opposite effect. The Judas goat — Al Gore — erroneously claimed that historical data shows the average temperature of the Earth increases with the carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere. The average temperature and carbon dioxide concentration are correlated, but the carbon dioxide concentration follows — not leads — the temperature increases, and this can be logically explained.
It is a shame that when there is so much controversy among knowledgeable people, that our naive government is ready to distort our whole world based on unproven models. There is a lot of money at stake, and most of the supporters stand to gain from the panic. It is ridiculous that we would sacrifice our economy and our way of life when even if the models were right our influence is dwarfed by the developing nations, including China, and they are ignoring the whole issue.
It takes an enormous individual ego and country arrogance to believe we are anything more than an ant on a log traveling down the river. We are not steering the temperature of the Earth. We can however destroy our economy, world position and way of life.
If you are interested in this subject you might review www.petitionproject.org, or better yet, read the recent book entitled “Heaven and Earth,” written by one of Australia's foremost Earth scientists, Professor Ian Plimer.
Bob Sendall is an Incline Village resident.
One way they deal with the very real fact that there is significant opposition to their dogmatic conclusions is to personally attack their opponents, usually saying evil corporations with vested interests in destroying the planet have bought them off. Just as often, they simply out-yell, ridicule, ignore or attempt to silence them. Remember when MIT's Richard Lindzen acknowledged that many scientists refuse to publicize their dissent to make "their lives easier"?
Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK) said today that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) “deliberately withheld facts from a report on global warming in order to bolster the Obama administration’s climate change initiatives,” The Hill reports.
He called for a criminal investigation.
Inhofe said the EPA “absolutely” buried evidence undermining policy on global warming after a researcher’s report claimed that carbon dioxide has had little effect on the environment.“They’ve been cooking that science since 1998,” Inhofe said during an interview on Fox News.
Inhofe argued that there should be a criminal investigation into the EPA report,As for the climate change bill passed by the House, it’s DOA in the Senate.
as well.“I don’t know whether there would be or not,” he said. “There could
be, and there probably should be.”
The Oklahoma Republican also said that the climate change legislation passed by a narrow vote in the House on Friday would be “dead on arrival” in theMore...
Earth only going through normal warming cycles
Most will and should agree that the debate is over about whether climate change is real ("Climate change hits home," June 25). Scientists have known for many years that the Earth goes through warming and cooling cycles. Scientists agree that we are currently in an interglacial period. A few hundred years ago, during the Dark Ages, the Earth cooled. Before that, Vikings grew crops in Greenland. There have been many studies that prove the Earth's climate is always changing. Scientists agree that it is always getting either warmer or cooler. There is no debate about what causes global warming because the real science involved in researching atmospheric and oceanic temperature change is routinely quashed. The effect of manmade CO2 in the atmosphere has been debunked. It is the media hype and the business of research that proliferate this idea that taxing energy will stop the Earth from warming.
If these government-funded studies discovered the fluctuating magnetic fields of Earth and the cycles of the sun, for instance, have more to do with our planet's exposure to radiation and thereby heat, the researchers would all be looking for jobs.
Australian Environmental Minister Penny Wong
Eco-Minister Flunks Global Warming Test
CHURCHVILLE, VA--When last we heard from Australian Senator Steve Fielding, he had paid his own way to a Washington, D.C. conference of climate skeptics--and armed himself with some questions about why Australia needs heavy carbon taxes on its energy use.
Back home, Fielding asked these three questions of Australian Environmental Minister Environmental Penny Wong:
First: Is it the case that atmospheric CO2 has increased 5 percent since 1998, while global temperature cooled during the same period? If so, why did the temperature not increase, and how can human emissions be to blame for dangerous levels of warming?
Wong’s answer: No answer.
Second: Is it the case that the rate and magnitude of warming between 1979 and 1998 were not unusual as compared with warmings that have occurred earlier in the Earth’s history? If the warming was not unusual, why is it perceived to have been caused by human CO2 emissions and in any event, why is warming a problem if the Earth has experienced similar warmings in the past?
Wong’s answer: Climatic events that occurred in the distant geological past are not relevant to policy concerned with contemporary climate change.
Ah, but Fielding is not talking about “the distant geological past.” He is talking about the Little Ice Age, which ended only in 1850--making way for the Modern Warming that has raised global temperatures about half a degree since then. The LIA was preceded by the Medieval Warming ((950-1300 AD) and the Roman Warming (200 BC to 600 AD).
Ice cores, seabed fossils and fossil pollen tell us the earth has had five previous abrupt global warmings just in the past 8,000 years. All of them were moderate. None gave us the runaway temperatures forecast by today’s unverified global climate models.
Third: Is it the case that all the computer models projected a steady increase in earth’s temperatures for the period 1990 to 2008, whereas in fact there were only eight years of warming, followed by 10 years of stasis and cooling? If so, why is it assumed that long-term climate projections by the same models are suitable as a basis for public policy?
Wong’s answer: Better climate models are on their way.
Ah, the models that we used to project the runaway warming have been wrong. So we won’t trust the ice cores, tree rings, fossil pollen, cave stalagmites and a vast variety of other climate-change proxies. Instead, we’ll hope that the next set of unverified computer models will actually predict the climate.
Fielding says Ms. Wong’s answers are not adequate to support a carbon tax that is likely to cost each Australian family about $4000 per year for a carbon tax of $30 per ton. Harvard’s Martin Feldstein thinks the carbon tax might have to go to $75 per ton to wring all the fossil fuels out of heating our houses and fertilizing our crops.
And even the alarmists admit these carbon taxes would only reduce the earth’s future warming by a barely-measurable one ten-thousandth of a degree C. The alarmists own math, CO2 makes up only 3.8 percent of the atmosphere, humans release only about 4 percent of that, and it just doesn’t matter.
The latest report is that Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has decided to delay his cap-and-tax bill for another year.
Climate change data
Public Forum Letter
Before you jump on the "climate change" bandwagon, research the Little Ice Age, which lasted from 1205 A.D. until 1850 A.D. Many of the purported effects of climate change are simply the way the climate was before the Little Ice Age, such as growing grapes in Northern Europe, reduction in glacier size, Greenland getting greener, etc. So it may be that instead of some climatic effects being created by humans, the Earth is just returning to its pre-Little Ice Age climate. Before we take drastic measures to fix the problem we better be sure there is a problem and not a normal change in the Earth's climate.
Google "climate change doubts" and you will find people like environmental scientist David W. Schnare of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, who said he was skeptical of climate change because "conclusions about the cause of the apparent warming stand on the shoulders of incredibly uncertain data and models. ... As a policy matter, one has to be less willing to take extreme actions when data are highly uncertain." There is far from "scientific consensus" on climate change.
June 28, 2009
"We should undoubtedly increase research and investment in alternative and renewable energy resources such as wind and solar but equally we need to be clear, at least in my mind, that I don't think these are ever likely to be a substitute for today's primary resources, particularly if world demand at least doubles over the next 20 years,"
Green job fallacies
Can governments create “green” jobs by spending big wads of money? Sure - but at the cost of destroying other jobs.
The benefits, environmental or otherwise, might offset the costs. But three prominent recent reports advocating the creation of “green” jobs make no attempt to calculate real benefits and real costs. The economic illiteracy revealed is breathtaking.
The Beacon Hill Institute has analyzed these proposals. We noted similar analyses last month from the Property and Environment Research Center in Bozeman, Mont. Columnist George Will highlighted the subject last Thursday.
Will reported on a Spanish researcher’s finding that Spain has destroyed or not created 2.2 jobs for each one created with the help of subsidies of $752,000 to $800,000 in alternative energy.
The Beacon Hill Institute examined reports from the Worldwatch Institute done with support from several international agencies, from the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst for the Center for American Progress and from Global Insight, a consulting firm, for the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
All count jobs as benefits - as the Beacon Hill Institute puts it, they are “mistakenly arguing that a cost is actually a benefit.” None calculates jobs destroyed or not created.
For example, Worldwatch argues for “nonmotorized transport,” such as the pedicabs used in Uganda and Kenya to transport large numbers of people. Pedicabs - amusing as they may be for a ride to Fenway - would just impoverish America.
The Center for American Progress claims new credit and investment in construction could “rapidly provide job opportunities that are badly needed.”
How odd. For recovery, capital and labor need to flow out of construction.
“The work that the job entails is a cost we must endure in order to receive the benefit the work provides,” the Institute wrote. This lesson needs to be more widely learned.
BP shuts alternative energy HQ
• 'Beyond Petroleum' boast in doubt as clean energy boss quits
• Renewables budget will be reduced by up to £550m this year
BP has shut down its alternative energy headquarters in London, accepted the resignation of its clean energy boss and imposed budget cuts in moves likely to be seen by environmental critics as further signs of the oil group moving "back to petroleum".
But Tony Hayward, the group's chief executive, said BP remained as committed as ever to exploring new energy sources and the non-oil division would benefit from the extra focus of being brought back in house.
BP Alternative Energy was given its own headquarters in County Hall opposite the Houses of Parliament two years ago and its managing director, Vivienne Cox, oversaw a small division of 80 staff concentrating on wind and solar power.More...
But the 49-year-old Cox – BP's most senior female executive, who previously ran renewables as part of a larger gas and power division now dismantled by Hayward – is standing down tomorrow.
This comes alongside huge cuts in the alternative energy budget – from $1.4bn (£850m) last year to between $500m and $1bn this year, although spending is still roughly in line with original plans to invest $8bn by 2015.
The move back to BP's corporate headquarters at St James's Square in London's West End made sense, particularly when the group was sitting on spare office space due to earlier cutbacks, said Hayward.
"We are going through a major restructuring and bringing the alternative energy business headquarters into the head office seems a good idea to me.
"It saves money and brings it closer to home ... you could almost see it as a reinforcement [of our commitment to the business]," he said.
Cox was stepping down to spend more time with her children, Hayward added. "I know you would love to make a story out of all this," he said, "but it's quite hard work."
The reason for the departure of Cox is variously said by industry insiders to be caused by frustration over the business being downgraded in importance or because she really does intend to stay at home more with her young children. Cox had already reduced her working week down to three days and had publicly admitted the difficulty of combining different roles.
She will be replaced by another woman, her former deputy Katrina Landis, but the moves will worry those campaigning for more women in business, especially as Linda Cook, Shell's most senior female executive, has recently left her job too.
BP has gradually given up on plans to enter the UK wind industry and concentrated all its turbine activities on the US, where it can win tax breaks and get cheaper and easier access to land.
In April the company closed a range of solar power manufacturing plants in Spain and the US with the loss of 620 jobs and Hayward has publicly questioned whether solar would ever become competitive with fossil fuels, something that goes against the current thinking inside the renewables sector.
Hayward has also moved BP into more controversial oil areas, such as Canada's tar sands, creating an impression that he has given up on the objectives of his predecessor, Lord Browne, to take the company "Beyond Petroleum".
Laurence I. Gould, PhD, Physics Department, University of Hartford
"The mean, with respect to which the temperature “anomaly” (difference between the mean and a particular temperature value) is measured, appears to be taken over a period so as to magnify that anomaly. The mean is taken from 1961 – 1990, an interval of 28 years. But there was a global cooling from about 1940 to 1975. Thus, over the years 1961 – 1975, or 50% of the time over which the mean was chosen, there was a global cooling!"
President Obama devoted his weekly address yesterday to the cap-and-tax bill that passed the House on Friday. In case you wanted to know what it's all about, Obama explains:
Make no mistake: this is a jobs bill. We're already seeing why this is true
in the clean energy investments we're making through the Recovery Act. In
California, 3000 people will be employed to build a new solar plant that will
create 1000 permanent jobs. In Michigan, investment in wind turbines and wind
technology is expected to create over 2,600 jobs. In Florida, three new solar
projects are expected to employ 1400 people.
The list goes on and on, but the point is this: this legislation will
finally make clean energy the profitable kind of energy. That will lead to the
creation of new businesses and entire new industries. And that will lead to
American jobs that pay well and cannot be outsourced. I have often talked about
the need to build a new foundation for economic growth so that we do not return
to the endless cycle of bubble and bust that led us to this recession. Clean
energy and the jobs it creates will be absolutely critical to this new
And here I thought this was a bill to save the planet. They not only figured out how to save the planet, but also how to create entire new industries too!
June 27, 2009
Greenland:Degree Days and the Lack of Warming
Greenland is melting, at least that is the headlines. Everyone in the global warming camp is quaking in their boots awaiting the great flood, foretold long ago by Algore the Magnificent.
Tonight we are going to look at the data for Greenland. There are only a few stations on Greenland which have any length at all. The longest is for Godthab Nuuk 64.17N 51.75W degrees. That record begins in 1866.
Now, if Greenland's temperature is warming, we should see it easily in the degree days above zero. Ice, of course can't melt if it is below zero. It can ablate, but ablation is not caused by global warming. So, if Greenland is warming we should see an increase in both the temperature and the number of days spent above zero deg C. The multiplication of temperature and days is called degree-days. Such calculations are used by electrical companies to estimate how much electricity will be needed for a given area. We can use it to see if there is an increase in degree-days over the past century in Greenland. Below is the degree-days for Godthab Nuuk, Greenland.....
read rest of article here
Cool heads needed on global warming
Fresh on the heels of another legislative victory that could prove burdensomely expensive for American taxpayers and businesses, President Barack Obama used his weekly radio address on Saturday to call for the U.S. Senate to move quickly to ratify the House of Representatives’ climate change legislation.
“We cannot be afraid of the future,” Obama said. “And we must not be prisoners of the past. Don’t believe the misinformation out there that suggests there is somehow a contradiction between investing in clean energy and economic growth.”
Ironically, though, Obama and the Earth First movement have forced this legislation on America through fearmongering about the future — or at least the future as predicted by former Vice President Al Gore and the woefully inadequate simulation programs that portend apocalyptic climate change in the face of contrary data and an unclear estimation of the actual cause of global warming.
Opponents of the legislation have their own fears, to be sure, but they’re significantly more tangible than those of the environmental left wing, which would have us believe that Americans’ use of air conditioners and motor vehicles dooms the planet to an Atlantean fate in tens — or maybe hundreds — of years.
Opponents charge that the legislation will result in higher energy costs, which will hurt families and small businesses and ultimately cost millions of U.S. jobs, as manufacturing companies move their processes overseas, where they will not have to worry about draconian energy taxes or the shell-game of carbon cap-and-trade, which favors large, wealthy companies over small, undercapitalized ones.
And even if Americans can adjust to Obama’s goals of cutting the nation’s carbon emissions 17 percent by 2020 and 83 percent by 2050, there’s no evidence there will be much effect on global warming, since the American standards will have no effect on the emissions coming from developing countries like China.
In fact, according to the U.S. government’s Energy Information Administration, the total increase in China’s carbon emissions since 2000 is 50 percent higher than that of the rest of the world combined. With Chinese citizens trading in their bicycles for cars at an every increasing rate — and with that nation steadfastly refusing to join any international efforts to reduce carbon emissions — the effects of its pollution are likely to negate any efforts made at a reduction on the part of America.
The Senate, long considered as our nation’s more deliberative legislative body, now has the opportunity to perform as James Madison envisioned it, “proceeding with more coolness, with more system, and with more wisdom, than the (House of Representatives).”
With Americans on the hook for trillions of dollars worth of new programs and bailouts since Obama took office in January — and more to come if the president gets his way on health care reform — current and future taxpayers can only hope their senators fulfill that historic role.
Zach Wamp: Cap And Trade Is Bad For American Competitiveness
Cap-and-trade is nothing more than a big regulatory scheme that will burden the American people with a new national energy tax. Outside estimates say this climate legislation would cost the average household more than $1,800 a year. If you don’t believe this prediction, look at what is happening in Britain where the average family is already paying nearly $1,300 a year in taxes to reduce carbon-emissions. The thought of a substantial tax increase is especially troubling for Americans who are already struggling financially during this economic downturn.
We have the knowledge base, innovation and free enterprise system to solve our environmental and energy challenges without these huge regulations. Properly investing in the energy sector can create new technologies and manufacturing opportunities to bolster our country’s competitiveness.
For more than 10 years, I’ve championed conservation and renewable energies, introducing and passing legislation to provide the best incentives for families and businesses to invest in alternative energy. But, in the Southeast United States renewable energy only generates a small fraction of the available electricity and a ‘cap-and-tax’ plot will have adverse effects on our state.
The Republican alternative is an all-of-the-above solution that includes the bold nuclear energy agenda that is necessary to meet the growing demand for electricity and reduce emissions. Nothing would do more for our economy and create more jobs than to build 100 new nuclear reactors in the next 20 years. The Department of Energy has stated that nuclear energy is the most effective way to reduce carbon emissions, yet it has been left out of the Democrats’ bill. If we really want to take a global leadership role on climate change and carbon reduction, we must produce more electricity from nuclear power.
Polar bear expert barred by global warmists
Dr Taylor, who has studied the animals for 30 years, was told his views 'are extremely unhelpful’ , reveals Christopher Booker.
Over the coming days a curiously revealing event will be taking place in Copenhagen. Top of the agenda at a meeting of the Polar Bear Specialist Group (set up under the International Union for the Conservation of Nature/Species Survival Commission) will be the need to produce a suitably scary report on how polar bears are being threatened with extinction by man-made global warming.
This is one of a steady drizzle of events planned to stoke up alarm in the run-up to the UN's major conference on climate change in Copenhagen next December. But one of the world's leading experts on polar bears has been told to stay away from this week's meeting, specifically because his views on global warming do not accord with those of the rest of the group.
Dr Mitchell Taylor has been researching the status and management of polar bears in Canada and around the Arctic Circle for 30 years, as both an academic and a government employee. More than once since 2006 he has made headlines by insisting that polar bear numbers, far from decreasing, are much higher than they were 30 years ago. Of the 19 different bear populations, almost all are increasing or at optimum levels, only two have for local reasons modestly declined.
Dr Taylor agrees that the Arctic has been warming over the last 30 years. But he ascribes this not to rising levels of CO2 – as is dictated by the computer models of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and believed by his PBSG colleagues – but to currents bringing warm water into the Arctic from the Pacific and the effect of winds blowing in from the Bering Sea.
He has also observed, however, how the melting of Arctic ice, supposedly threatening the survival of the bears, has rocketed to the top of the warmists' agenda as their most iconic single cause. The famous photograph of two bears standing forlornly on a melting iceberg was produced thousands of times by Al Gore, the WWF and others as an emblem of how the bears faced extinction – until last year the photographer, Amanda Byrd, revealed that the bears, just off the Alaska coast, were in no danger. Her picture had nothing to do with global warming and was only taken because the wind-sculpted ice they were standing on made such a striking image.
Dr Taylor had obtained funding to attend this week's meeting of the PBSG, but this was voted down by its members because of his views on global warming. The chairman, Dr Andy Derocher, a former university pupil of Dr Taylor's, frankly explained in an email (which I was not sent by Dr Taylor) that his rejection had nothing to do with his undoubted expertise on polar bears: "it was the position you've taken on global warming that brought opposition".
Dr Taylor was told that his views running "counter to human-induced climate change are extremely unhelpful". His signing of the Manhattan Declaration – a statement by 500 scientists that the causes of climate change are not CO2 but natural, such as changes in the radiation of the sun and ocean currents – was "inconsistent with the position taken by the PBSG".
So, as the great Copenhagen bandwagon rolls on, stand by this week for reports along the lines of "scientists say polar bears are threatened with extinction by vanishing Arctic ice". But also check out Anthony Watt's Watts Up With That website for the latest news of what is actually happening in the Arctic. The average temperature at midsummer is still below zero, the latest date that this has happened in 50 years of record-keeping. After last year's recovery from its September 2007 low, this year's ice melt is likely to be substantially less than for some time. The bears are doing fine.
New regulations will require infrared-reflective windshields
New regulations passed Thursday in the state legislature will require auto manufacturers to equip new light- and medium-duty vehicles with infrared-reflective windshields.
The windshields - which consist of a special laminate sandwiched between two layers of glass - will reflect heat and keep cars cooler when they're parked in the sun.
Officials say this will result in motorists using less air conditioning, which will save gas and reduce greenhouse emissions.
Starting in 2012, 75 percent of new vehicles will have to be equipped with windshields that reflect 50 percent of the sun's heat-producing rays and windows that absorb 45 percent, said a California Air Resources Board spokesman Stanley Young.
In 2013 all vehicles will have to meet those standards, Young said. In 2014 the standards will rise and windshields will be required to block 60 percent of heat-producing rays and windows will be required to absorb 50 percent, Young said.
The new regulations are part of the state's 2006 Global Warming Solutions Act, which mandates greenhouse gas emissions be reduced 25 percent by 2020, a board report says.
'Global warming' is propaganda
Cap and trade is a tax increase. You have dressed it up in motherhood and apple pie green ideology, but it is a tax designed to force the economy to utilize higher-cost, less-productive means of supplying our needed energy.
If solar and ethanol are cost-effective, the market will automatically adopt them without coercion, just as it has hydro and nuclear. Massive subsidies is another way of saying tax increase.
Your last paragraph says, "our grandchildren will breathe cleaner air." Amazing. The exhaust cycle of their breathing (and ours) generates CO2, the very "pollutant" cap and trade is attacking.
The reason given for cap and trade is to prevent global warming. However, the statistical correlation of CO2 and temperature is virtually zero, while the correlation with solar activity is high. The so called "consensus" that we are experiencing global warming is propaganda and does not exist.
The climate is in fact cooling and has since approximately 1998. The sun is currently in a deep solar minimum like that last experienced 100 years ago and quite possibly since the start of the Little Ice Age in 1350. It appears likely this cooling will last at least for many decades and probably longer.
Instead of worrying about a nonexistent global warming problem, we need to be worrying about the economy we are leaving to our grandchildren. Additionally, even the proponents admit it is ineffective at curbing CO2. They are proposing an expensive cure for a non-existent problem.
Unprecedented and UnAmerican: “Climate Change” Bill passes house
President Obama during the campaign speaking in San Francisco: “You know, when I was asked earlier about the issue of coal, uh, you know — under my plan of a cap-and-trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.”
There are so many Democrats who have personal investments in startup “green” companies and technologies. That includes Nancy Pelosi. So, most of them feel eager to build castles in the sky and create a new dynamic green energy economy, which translates into large subsidies for their investments and a new national energy tax. Hey, you have to help close that massive deficit somehow, right? Besides, they never had much use for the older system of our economy. But, this isn’t solely a Democrat problem even though they did send a taxi to break Rep. Patrick Kennedy out of rehab so he could vote yes for the bill. Here is a list of Republicans who voted for the bill.
There is some good news to this. The bill still has to pass the Senate and both sides have voiced that is unlikely. ...read entire article here