Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup

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Quote of the Week:
“…we redistribute de facto the world’s wealth by climate policy…One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. This has almost nothing to do with environmental policy anymore…” IPCC co-chair of Working Group 3, Dr. Ottmar Endenhofer, November 13, 2010 interview [H/t Dr. Charles Battig]

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Number of the Week: 65% and 46%

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THIS WEEK:
By Ken Haapala, Executive Vice President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
SEPP / VA-SEEE Forums in Tidewater VA: SEPP / VA-SEEE gave forums this week in Mathews and in Virginia Beach, VA. At these Forums, Fred Singer addressed the issue of sea level rise, which he believes will be about 8 inches in this century. The local impact would depend on what is happening to the land area. Is it subsiding or perhaps rising? Ken Haapala addressed the divergence between temperature observations and the projections from models as well as briefly touching on energy issues.
However, it was the presentation by Charles Battig, MD, President of the Piedmont Chapter of VA-SEEE that should be most disturbing to local residents and property owners. Dr. Battig addressed the current effort by internationalists to expand their control of local land use in the United States. Those seeking control are aided and abetted by funds and activates from Federal agencies such as the Department of State, Department of Interior, and the EPA. The quote of the week is taken from his presentation.

Traditionally, in the US local land use decisions were left to the localities – the people who lived in the area. Thus, the use of natural resources on private land was largely local issue with the land owner. In recent decades, Federal agencies have greatly expanded their powers to control land use. For example, wetlands were once considered land of marginal value and mosquito breeding grounds. Wetlands were drained to control malaria which was spread by mosquitoes. After World War II, malaria was finally eliminated in the US. In addition, the Department of Agriculture promoted the draining of wetland to expand the useful farmland in the country. Several decades ago, many began to realize the value of wetlands for the ecological balance of various regions. Rather than simply stop promoting and funding the drainage of wetlands, Federal government agencies have actively controlled the use of such lands and punished landowners who do not obey their demands.

The Constitution gave the Federal government the power to control the navigable waters of the United States. The definition of navigable waters has been twisted beyond meaning. Isolated prairie ponds that are visited by migrating ducks have been declared navigable waters of the US. Isolated depressions in the desert which have visible water only a few times each decade are also so identified; meadows and intermittent stream channels with leaves are also targeted. Building a dam to store water in a wetland is considered the same as filling it with dirt. Throughout this process the costs are borne by the private landowner, but the control of the private property is with the Federal government.

After witnessing this expansion of power for the past 30 years, it is not difficult to imagine the pernicious effect that expansion of international power, as described by Dr. Battig, will have over local property owners. As with wetlands, the Federal government cannot be expected to protect the constitutional rights of the citizens.

The general effort is embodied in UN Agenda 21, which was adapted during the Rio Conference in 1992. This was the same conference that led to the dysfunctional Kyoto Protocol to control world-wide carbon dioxide emissions under the false claim that the emissions are causing unprecedented and dangerous global warming.

As presented by Dr. Battig, there are many code words used to disguise this expansion of power including smart growth, sustainability, comprehensive planning, growth management, etc. Many of the concepts were embedded in the US Policy articulated in “Towards a Sustainable America,” issued in 1999 under President Clinton. Specific programs include: International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI), which was renamed Local Governments for Sustainability and President Obama’s Rural Councils. Private organizations such as the Sierra Club have incorporated the goals in its “Cool Counties” program.

Many of these programs are largely funded by the Federal Government and attract organizations seeking such funds, such as the American Planning Association.
The next major meeting for the internationalists will be the Rio+20 Earth Summit to take place from 20 to 22 June 2012. TWTW will periodically report on the activities leading to Rio+20. For the slides prepared by Dr. Battig on Agenda 21, please see his web site: www.climateis.wordpress.com. For an article on the smaller forum in Virginia Beach, please see Article # 2. Unfortunately the article relies on false reports regarding the sources of funding of SEPP.
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No Drastic Action Needed: An impressive array of distinguished scientists from numerous countries published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal asserting that no drastic action is required to address global warming / climate change. The physical evidence that carbon dioxide emissions are harmful does not exist, and economic growth using fossil fuels is a greater benefit to humanity than any benefits assumed under greenhouse gas controls. What is needed is greater understanding of climate change rather than the simplistic notion that carbon dioxide controls climate. Please see Article # 1.
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Alternative Sources of Electricity: Someone experienced in analyzing potential investments in innovative industries may be surprised by the lack of hard data on the performance of solar and wind in generating electricity. Certainly, it is understandable that solar and wind companies may wish to keep certain trade secrets from the public, such as manufacturing design and techniques. But if the results are as solid as the promoters claim, than one would expect the promoters would give the hard data on performance. Yet these are being withheld on the claims that such data is proprietary – confidential.
Slowly, information is leaking from nations that have spent heavily on wind and solar, such as Germany. This information should give pause to those touting solar and wind, including politicians. England is pulling back from wind, Germany has announced drastic cut-backs on its subsidies to solar, and Spain has announced the elimination of subsidies for renewable power. These actions are not the result of success. The erratic nature of these sources is well established. Further, electricity is rather unique among energy types – it cannot be stored on an affordable, commercial scale.

The leaders of countries that have spent heavily on solar and wind assumed that the erratic nature of these sources, and that the lack of storage, can be compensated by installing the facilities over a broad geographical area. They were wrong. A winter high pressure system can cover a broad area of Europe, rendering wind turbines useless when solar panels can generate little electricity, and none at night. Reports are indicating that at least 80% conventional back-up is needed. [One exception may be Denmark which relies on pumped hydro storage from Norway and Sweden, selling excess wind generated electricity to pump up reservoirs when possible and buying the hydroelectricity when needed. The pricing should be quite interesting.]

A further complication is that fast back-up from conventional sources, such as coal or natural gas, is very demanding on the equipment, inefficient, and polluting – the pollution control devices do not work properly when heat output varies. According to reports, no coal plants have been de-commissioned in northern Europe rendering the claim of lower carbon dioxide emissions questionable.

Those proclaiming the virtues of wind and solar should be compelled to reveal actual output data from these sources, the required back-up, and data on the actual reduction of carbon dioxide and other emissions when alternative sources are used. Please note that SEPP does not agree with the usually reliable US Energy Information Agency when is suggests that the production capacity of on-shore wind is 34% of name plate capacity. It should be less. Please see Article # 5, and links under “Questioning European Green.”
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Number of the Week: 65% and 46%. Donna Laframboise, who exposed the heavy involvement of environmental groups in the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), exposes the results of the heavy spending of the Provence of Ontario, Canada. According a report by the Auditor General “…electricity prices for the average consumer have increased 65% since the restructuring of the electricity sector in 1999, and prices are expected to rise another 46% in the next five years.” Electricity from free wind and solar is not cheap. Please see link under “Questioning Green Elsewhere.”
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Conspiracy Theory: The ever imaginative historian of climate science, Naomi Oreskes, has an op-ed in the LA Times once again associating those scientists who are skeptical about the claim that carbon dioxide emissions are causing unprecedented and dangerous global warming / climate change with tobacco executives who stated that cigarette smoking did not cause lung cancer.

Establishing the strong link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer required rigorous application of statistics – at the time, some 92% of smokers did not contract cancer. The IPCC and Oreskes’ fellow advocates have failed to produce rigorous science. Statistically, late 20th century climate change is more closely linked to ocean oscillations than to carbon dioxide – no increase in temperatures for over a decade although carbon dioxide emissions continue to increase.

She is not worth addressing except, as illustrated in the article on the SEPP – VA-SEEE forum, journalists continue to report her false claims against two of the founders of SEPP, Fred Singer and Fredrick Seitz. Please see link under “Defenders of the Orthodoxy.”

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ARTICLES:
For the numbered articles below please see this week’s TWTW at:
http://www.sepp.org…
The articles are at the end of the pdf.
1. No Need to Panic About Global Warming
There’s no compelling scientific argument for drastic action to ‘decarbonize’ the world’s economy.
16 scientists, WSJ, Jan 27, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
Signatories follow.
WSJ
OpEd signatories
http://xa.yimg.com/kq/groups/3220333/16095617…
2. U.Va. professor throws cold water on global warming
By Scott Harper, Virginia-Pilot, Jan 25, 2012
http://hamptonroads.com/2012/01/uva-professor…
An article describing the SEPP / VA-SEEE presentation at Virginia Beach. Comments by Fred Singer on the article follows.
3. Canada’s Harper Vows to Speed Up Energy Projects
By Nirmala Menon, WSJ, Jan 26, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
4. Oil Fields Gushing in the U.S.
By Tom Fowler, WSJ, Jan 23, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
Federal forecasters are expected to confirm on Monday what the energy industry already knows: Oil production is surging in the U.S.
5. Germany’s Solar Crack-Up
Berlin backs down on trying to ‘grow pineapples in Alaska.’
Editorial, WSJ, Jan 15, 2012 [H/t Timothy Wise]
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…

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NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Climategate Continued
Global warming’s ‘dirty laundry’
University of Virginia should disclose climate emails
Editorial, Washington Times, Jan 27, 2012
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jan/…
[SEPP Comment: Apparently Mr. Mann does not appreciate his critics.]
A major FOI victory
By Andrew Montford and Don Keiller, Bishop Hill, Jan 23, 2012
http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2012/1…
[SEPP Comments: A victory for those demanding the University of East Anglia release CRUTEM, temperature data, as requested under Freedom of Information Acts.]
Another IPCC Demand for Secrecy
By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, Jan 26, 2012
http://climateaudit.org/2012/01/26/another-ip…
[SEPP Comment: Steve McIntyre's exchange with IPCC on its efforts to stop Steve from posting segments of the draft of AR5 - even though the IPCC declares the review process is transparent.]
Challenging the Orthodoxy
UN Abuse of Precautionary Principle Lets Them Ignore Corrupt Climate Science
By Tim Ball, His Blog, Jan 24, 2012
http://drtimball.com/2012/un-abuse-of-precaut…
“In a free society the individual is presumed to be free to act unless the state can prove harm or the potential to do harm. The precautionary principle says that no individual person is free to act unless that individual can prove to the state that the action can do no harm.”
The Skeptic’s Case,
By David Evans, Joannenova, Jan 25, 2012
http://joannenova.com.au/2012/01/dr-david-eva…
[SEPP Comment: A solid overview from the position of one skeptic.]
Presentation by global warming skeptics draws big crowd in Portland
By Scott Learn, The Oregonian, Jan 26, 2012 [H/t Charles Battig]
http://www.oregonlive.com/environment/index.s…
[SEPP Comment: The great success of a presentation on global warming sponsored by the Oregon American Meteorological Society was due, in part, by the abrupt cancellation of the presentation by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry after the objection of an alarmist.]
Defending the Orthodoxy
The verdict is in on climate change
When it comes to climate change, open-mindedness is the wrong approach.
By Naomi Oreskes, LA Times, Jan 22, 2012
http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jan/22/opini…
[SEPP Comment: Even before the jury has heard the evidence of the defendant that human emissions of carbon dioxide are not responsible for unprecedented and dangerous global warming, the professor of history at University of California, San Diego announces the verdict.]
“Please Don’t Confuse me with the Facts”
By Fred Singer, Letter to Editor of LA Times, Jan 25, 2012
Regarding the above Oreskes op-ed.
It is strange that UCSD Prof Naomi Oreskes (op-ed, Jan 22), who claims to be working professionally on climate change, does not list the main reason why so many scientists are skeptical about any significant human contribution: It is simply lack of evidence. Instead, she imagines a number of political reasons and imputes bad faith to skeptical climate scientists.
The fact that natural agents have been producing climate changes in the past is uncontested; there is no reason to think that such natural forcings would suddenly cease to be important. It should be clear therefore that the burden of proof must lie with those who argue in favor of Anthropogenic Global Warming and propose Draconian regulations to control emissions of CO2 – costly and wholly unnecessary measures that are destroying the economy and killing jobs. But we cannot discern AGW in the climate record: Hence the ongoing lively scientific debate about such evidence – which Oreskes conveniently ignores. Her advice: When it comes to climate science, open-mindedness is the wrong approach.
Thawing tundra a new climate threat
By Jared Sagoff, Argonne National Laboratory, Jan 19, 2012 [H/t Paul Redfern]
http://www.anl.gov/Media_Center/News/2012/new…
[SEPP Comment: Perhaps the respected Argonne National Laboratory should ask: if a vast body of physical evidence indicates the Arctic was warmer 5 to 8 thousand years ago, why is area beginning to thaw now?]
News from Brussels: Danish EU presidency lowers expectations on climate policy
By Sonja van Renssen, European Energy Review, Jan 25, 2012
http://www.europeanenergyreview.eu/site/pagin…
“Behind the Danish EU presidency’s climate and energy plans lies a more fundamental objective: it wants Europe to move away from the notion of austerity measures to investment in green growth.”
[SEPP Comment: But investment in green growth produces negative returns: stagnation and bankruptcy.]
Regional Cap-and-Trade Effort Seeks Greater Impact by Cutting Carbon Allowances
By Mireya Navarro, NYT, Jan 26, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/27/nyregion/in…
[SEPP Comment: As refineries that serve the northeast are shutting down, the politicians make it more difficult to re-open them.]
Questioning the Orthodoxy
Watts Up? Who Killed Climated Change?
Patrick Michaels, Forbes, Jan 27, 2012
http://www.forbes.com/sites/patrickmichaels/2…
[SEPP Comment: The contribution of Anthony Watts was significant, but so were the contributions of many others.]
Questioning European Green
Spain Suspends Subsidies for New Renewable Energy Power Plants
By Ben Sills, Bloomberg, Jan 27, 2012 [H/t Mark Duchamp]
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-27/spai…
[SEPP Comment: Recognizing that the jobs provided by the free energy industries are too expensive.]
The hidden fuel costs of wind generated electricity.
K. de Groot & C. le Pair, His Blog, No date – Jan 25, 2012 [H/t Cornwall Alliance]
http://www.clepair.net/windsecret.html…
[SEPP Comment: Summary of the inefficiencies of wind power based on data from Germany.]
The future of fossil fuels
By Martin Livermore, Scientific-Alliance, Jan 26, 2012
http://www.scientific-alliance.org/scientific…
[SEPP Comment: Current policies of Western Europe will create unnecessary economic hardship.]
Why we’re no longer so keen on being green: Number of people willing to change the way they live falls by 10%
By Steve Doughty, Daily Mail, Jan 27, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-20923…
[SEPP Comment: The man in the pub is not an affluent environmentalist.]
Questioning Green Elsewhere
Green Energy: the Auditor Isn’t Impressed
By Donna Laframboise, NFC, Jan 26, 2012
http://nofrakkingconsensus.com/2012/01/26/gre…
[SEPP Comment: Drawing from the report of the Office of Auditor General of Ontario, Canada.]
Expanding the Orthodoxy
Davos grapples with surging demand for fuel, food
By Staff Writers, Davos, Switzerland (AFP) Jan 25, 2012
http://www.seeddaily.com/reports/Davos_grappl…
[SEPP Comment: Another demand to expand the powers of an unelected international group over US taxpayers.]
Problems within the Orthodoxy
No chance for climate deal unless firms join push: UN
By Staff Writers,Davos, Switzerland (AFP) Jan 26, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/No_chance_f…
[SEPP Comment: A UN call for green companies to lobby their government for more green energy.]
Seeking a Common Ground
Open-mindedness is the wrong (?) approach
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc, Jan 23, 2012
http://judithcurry.com/2012/01/23/open-minded…
[SEPP Comment: Judith Curry opens comments on Naomi Oreskes' op-ed that we all must trust the IPCC experts. See op-ed under "Defending the Orthodoxy."]
US Emissions Projections Compared to Reduction Targets
By Roger Pielke, Jr, His Blog, Jan 26, 2012
http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/2012/01/us-…
“It should be fairly obvious that under the assumptions of the EIA (such as positive economic growth) that the emissions reduction targets are not going to be met. Given President Obama’s renewed commitment to an “all of the above” strategy for energy production in the United States, is it finally time to dismiss the charade of emissions reductions targets and adopt a different approach?”
New Emissions Data Dampen Global Warming Fears
By James Taylor, Forbes, Jan 25, 2012
http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamestaylor/2012/…
Nature Physics Insight – Complexity
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc, Jan 25, 2012
http://judithcurry.com/2012/01/25/nature-phys…
[SEPP Comment: The need to develop new tools to understand complex systems such as climate.]
“Ever increasing degrees of freedom in climate models has surpassed our ability to understand how to reason about and draw inferences from climate model output. New insights are needed, and network theory may be one such source of new insights.”
Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.
Hansen Predicts Rapid Sea Level Rise – When He Is 140 Years Old
By Steven Goddard, Real Science, Jan 27, 2012
http://www.real-science.com/hansen-predicts-r…
[SEPP Comment: Most agree that the influence of carbon dioxide on temperatures is logarithmic. Hansen apparently believes that the influence of warming projected by unverified models on sea levels is exponential.]
Models v. Observations
New Paper “Improved Constraints On 21st-Century Warming Derived Using 160 Years Of Temperature Observations” By Gillet Et Al 2012
By Roger Pielke, Sr, Pielke Climate Science, Jan 27, 2012
http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2012/01…
“When they write:
‘……we detect the influence of greenhouse gases, aerosols and natural forcings in the observed temperature record’
they more accurately should state:
…….we detect IN THE MODEL the influence of greenhouse gases, aerosols and natural forcings WHEN COMPARED WITH the observed temperature record.”
Changing Weather
2011 was 51st warmest year in Australia!
By Steve Woodman, Joannenova, Jan 25, 2012
http://joannenova.com.au/2012/01/2011-was-51s…
[SEPP Comment: Clever play on the usual screaming headline.]
Changing Climate
NASA Sees Repeating La Nina Hitting its Peak
By Staff Writers, Pasadena CA (JPL), Jan 19, 2012
http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/NASA_Sees_R…
[SEPP Comment: Jason 2 satellites observing variations in sea surface height as a means of estimating the strength of the La Nina. According to the IPCC the El Nino - Southern Oscillation does not cause global warming / climate change.]
Changing Sea Ice
Ice in Bering Sea threatens crab fishery
Sea ice is encroaching unusually early on the central Bering Sea, threatening to grind Alaska’s economically important snow crab fishery to a halt at the peak of the season, leaving crabbers facing major losses.
By Michelle Theriault Boots, Anchorage Daily News, Jan 26, 2012 [H/t Weatherbell Analytics]
http://www.thenewstribune.com/2012/01/25/1999…
[SEPP Comment: A weather change not usually included in TWTW, but this report offers contrast to the alarmist claims of global warming and disappearing sea ice.]
Changing Earth
Waiting for Death Valley’s Big Bang
By Staff Writers, New York NY (SPX), Jan 25, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Waiting_for…
“Yet, as the researchers point out, Lamont-Doherty tree-ring researchers have already shown that the region was even hotter and drier during Medieval times, when the blowup took place.”
Agriculture Issues & Fear of Famine
Plant-zone Map a Boon to Growers,
By Bart Ziegler, WSJ, Jan 26, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
[SEPP Comment: The new US Department of Agriculture map shows that winters in urban areas, particularly in the Northeast, are getting warmer - the Urban Heat Island effect? The article may be behind a pay wall but the map is available at: http://planthardiness.ars.usda.gov/PHZMWeb/%5D
The Political Games Continue
State Of The Union: Apparently, Hugh Hefner is Responsible for Abstinence
By Warren Meyer, Forbes, Jan 25, 2012
http://www.forbes.com/sites/warrenmeyer/2012/…
[SEPP Comment: President taking credit for the boon in oil and gas production in the US.]
Rep. Markey’s Keystone ‘Fix': Would It Increase Oil Imports from Saudi Arabia?
By Marlo Lewis, Global Warming.org, January 20, 2012
http://www.globalwarming.org/2012/01/20/rep-m…
Litigation Issues
Where will Obama side on mud puddles?
By David Freddoso,, Washington Examiner, Jan 26, 2012
http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/ar…
[SEPP Comment: Mud puddle management -- court ordered regulation of ditches of logging roads. Did the administration fight it?]
Subsidies and Mandates Forever
Obama vows no backing down on clean energy
By Staff Writers, Washington (AFP), Jan 24, 2012
http://www.energy-daily.com/reports/Obama_vow…
[SEPP Comment: As the evidence compounds that so-called clean energy is unreliable, expensive and may not reduce carbon dioxide emissions, the president remains resolute: We must not be left behind by China and Germany!]
Energy Tax Breaks Proposed, Despite Waning Support for Subsidies
By Diane Cardwell, NYT, Jan 26, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/27/business/en…
[SEPP Comment: In spite of bragging of falling costs, to "stay competitive" wind and solar need more subsidies. What a twisted definition of competitive.]
EPA and other Regulators on the March
EPA’s Sustainability Gambit
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Jan 27, 2012
http://dddusmma.wordpress.com/2012/01/27/epas…
Dodo of the Year
A court throws out a fowl case of selective prosecution against oil and gas companies.
Editorial, WSJ, Jan 25, 2012 [H/t Deke Forbes]
http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB1000142…
[SEPP Comment: Justice Department prosecutes oil companies for the death of 7 non-endangered birds, but does nothing about the death of endangered eagles and hundreds of thousands of other birds from wind turbines. May be behind a pay-wall.]
$1.6 million fine for cutting down trees
By Staff Writers, Jupiter, Fla. (UPI) Jan 26, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/16_million_…
[SEPP Comment: Government control of trees on private property.]
Energy Issues – Non-US
Energy regulatory upgrade ‘priority issue': Joe Oliver
By Yadullah Hussain, Financial Post, Jan 27, 2012
http://business.financialpost.com/2012/01/27/…
[SEPP Comment: The Canadian Minister of Natural Resources realizes the environmental industry abuses the principle of open comment.]
Tucker’s Terrestrialism and the Technology of Modernity
By Jon Boone, Master Resource, Jan 24, 2012
http://www.masterresource.org/2012/01/tuckers…
[SEPP Comment: Prosperous societies have been converting to more clean burning fuels without government exaggeration of possible health risks.]
Energy Issues — US
Short-Term Energy Outlook
By Staff Writers, EIA, Jan 2012
http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/steo/pdf/steo_fu…
Age of environmental fear
We should celebrate our energy bounty, but instead we cower
By Rich Trzupek, Washington Times, Jan 24, 2012 [H/t Deke Forbes]
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jan/…
Narrow Interest Blocks Big Pipeline
By David Kreutzer, Heritage.org, Jan 20, 2012
http://blog.heritage.org/2012/01/20/narrow-in…
Obama loves oil – Not!
By Peter Foster, Financial Post, Jan 27, 2012
http://opinion.financialpost.com/2012/01/27/o…
US Administration’s Control of Oil and Gas
Obama’s Keystone Rejection May Provide A Buffett Bonanza
By Larry Bell, Forbes, Jan 26, 2012
http://www.forbes.com/sites/larrybell/2012/01…
[SEPP Comment: More on the need to ship oil from North Dakota to refineries.]
Time, Newsweek Bury Keystone
By Michael J. Economides & Peter C Glover, Energy Tribune, Jan 26, 2012
http://www.energytribune.com/articles.cfm/965…
Has Obama seen the light on oil?
By: Diana Furchtgott-Roth, Washington Examiner, Jan 26, 2012
http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columni…
[SEPP Comment: There a big difference between speeches and actions.]
Charles Manson energy
It’s time to end our “helter-skelter” energy policy that lets wind turbines kill without fault but brings criminal charges against competitors
By Paul Driessen, CFACT, Jan 16, 2012
http://www.cfact.org/a/2078/Charles-Manson-en…
Obama’s offshore drilling pledge restates existing plan
By Ben Geman, The Hill, Jan 25, 2012
http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/e2-wire/2064…
[SEPP Comment: The promise of nothing new to expand production.]
U.S. ‘Reset’ Backfires As Brazil Turns To China
Editorial, IBD, Jan 24, 2012
http://news.investors.com/Article.aspx?id=598…
Giberson: “Did the Federal Government Invent the Shale Gas Boom?” (December 20 post becomes part of a national debate)
By Robert Bradley Jr, Master Resource, Jan 26, 2012
http://www.masterresource.org/2012/01/giberso…
Return of King Coal?
EIA: Coal Generation to Plummet Through 2035 on Demand Slump, Environmental Rules
By Staff Writers, POWERnews, Jan 25, 2012
http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/4353.html?h…
[SEPP Comment: Coal will remain king in Asia for a long time, but the West is rejecting it to its own detriment.]
Nuclear Energy and Fears
DOE to Fund Design, Licensing of Small Modular Reactors
By Staff Writers, POWERnews, Jan 25, 2012
http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/4357.html?h…
[SEPP Comment: An interesting development.]
Alternative “Green” Energy – Wind and Solar
Behind Iberdrola’s Portland layoffs: expiring wind-energy tax credits, declining demand, overloaded grid, cheap natural gas
By Richard Read, The Oregonian, Jan 25, 2012 [H/t Mark Duchamp]
http://www.renewablesbiz.com/article/12/01/be…
[SEPP Comment: The lay-offs are caused by government no longer subsiding inefficient sources of electricity.]
Wind Ordinance Debate: The 1,000-foot Set-Back Standard (Are environmentalists underregulating themselves?)
By Tony Fleming, Master Resource, Jan 23, 2012
http://www.masterresource.org/2012/01/wind-or…
Micro Solar: Eyesore NIMBYism and the Curse of Dilute Energy
By Robert Bradley, Jr, Master Resource, Jan 27, 2012
http://www.masterresource.org/2012/01/micro-s…
[SEPP Comment: Why should anyone be surprised when neighbors object to massive arrays of solar panels in their neighborhood? A small underground nuclear package plant would be more harmonious with the landscape.]
Alternative “Green” Energy – Biofuels, Hydro, etc.
EPA: Palm oil flunks the climate test
By Ben Geman, The Hill, Jan 26, 2012
http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/e2-wire/2067…
[SEPP Comment: Using the same standards as for palm oil, the EPA should reject biofuels made from corn ethanol as not meeting renewable fuels mandate.]
Use and Capacity of Global Hydropower Increases
By Staff Writers. Washington DC (SPX), Jan 25, 2012
http://www.energy-daily.com/reports/Use_and_C…
[SEPP Comment: China is the largest user of hydropower and intends to expand it.]
DOE Reports: Tides, Waves Could Generate 15% of Nation’s Power by 2030
By Staff Writers, POWERnews, Jan 18, 2012
http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/DOE-Reports…
[SEPP Comment: If cost is not a factor.]
California Dreaming
California air board to vote on landmark electric-car rules
By Paul Rogers, Mercury News, Jan 25, 2012
http://www.mercurynews.com/science/ci_1982124…
[SEPP Comment: According to this report, as a condition for the US bailout, General Motors and Chrysler agreed not to sue to block California auto rules. Ownership has its privileges.]
California adopts nation’s most aggressive clean car rules
By Rick Daysog, Sacramento Bee, Jan 27, 2012 [H/t SPPI]
http://www.sacbee.com/2012/01/27/4220304/cali…
[SEPP Comment: This road map to the future may it a dead end.]
Review of Recent Scientific Articles by NIPCC
For a full list of articles see
http://www.NIPCCreport.org…
A Summary of Climate Change over the Past Millennium in China
Reference: Zhou, XJ. 2011. The characteristics and regularities of the climate change over the past millennium in China. Chinese Science Bulletin 56: 2985.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/jan/…
Rising Temperatures and Corn Production in Northeast China
Reference: Chen, C., Lei, C., Deng, A., Qian, C., Hoogmoed, W. and Zhang, W. 2011. Will higher minimum temperatures increase corn production in northeast China? An analysis of historical data over 1965-2008. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 151: 1580-1588.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/jan/…
The Future of Earth’s Coral Reefs Debated in Science
Reference: Pandolfi, J.M., Connolly, S.R., Marshall, D.J. and Cohen, A.L. 2011b. Response. Science 334: 1495-1496.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/jan/…
Finally, it should also be noted that numerous research studies bear both experimental and observational witness to the ability of a wide range of organisms (both aquatic and terrestrial) to rapidly evolve to meet the challenges of rapid environmental change
Sea Stars – with Missing Arms! – Experiencing Ocean Acidification
Reference: Schram, J.B., McClintock, J.B., Angus, R.A and Lawrence, J.M. 2011. Regenerative capacity and biochemical composition of the sea star Luidia clathrata (Say) (Echinodermata: Asteroidea) under conditions of near-future ocean acidification. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 407: 266-274.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/jan/…
Oh Mann!
Virginians Get First Peek at Secret UVA emails
Press Release, ATI, Jan 25, 2012
http://www.atinstitute.org/virginians-get-fir…
Environmental Industry
Obama administration unveils forest management plan
It is an attempt to balance competing interests of industry and conservation groups, replacing a framework that has long been at the center of legal battles.
By Michael Muskal, LA Times, Jan 26, 2012
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/natio…
Faust in the forests
For 40 years, the environmental movement has been making hysterical claims about the state of the world’s forests
By Peter Foster, Financial Post, Jan 24, 2012
http://opinion.financialpost.com/2012/01/24/p…
How Green Became Obama’s Albatross
The president is trapped by his own rhetoric amid America’s energy boom.
By Holman Jenkins, Jan 25, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
Other Scientific News
Life discovered on dead hydrothermal vents
By Staff Writers, Los Angeles CA (SPX) Jan 26, 2012
http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Life_discov…
[SEPP Comment: The tremendous resilience of life from hot to cold.]
A step closer to mapping the Earth in 3D
By Staff Writers, Berlin, Germany (SPX) Jan 17, 2012
http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/A_step_clos…
Other News that May Be of Interest
National climate change strategy proposed for wildlife
By Dean Kuipers, LA Times, Jan 20, 2012
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/environment…
[SEPP Comment: The bureaucrats still cannot define climate change or project its effects.]
Rich Asians threaten high-value fish: experts
By Staff Writers, Manila (AFP), Jan 24, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Rich_Asians…
[SEPP Comment: If one believes the EPA, the fish eaters will suffer from mercury poisoning. Why the alarm?]

- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – -

BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
The ocean’s acid test
Changes society is forcing on the ocean may be larger than any inferred from the geologic record of the past 300 million years. And it’s already underway.
By Douglas Fischer, Daily Climate, Jan 26, 2012
http://wwwp.dailyclimate.org/tdc-newsroom/aci…
Teenage Chileans exposed to nearly lifetime of sunrays
By Staff Writers, Santiago (AFP), Jan 25, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Teenage_Chi…

***

PLEASE NOTE: The complete TWTW, including the full text of the numbered articles, can be downloaded in an easily printable form at this web site: http://www.sepp.org/the-week-that-was.cfm…

On the Road Again: Fred Singer will be traveling to the Southwest and West US to spread the joyous news that the NIPCC Reports are correct and the IPCC models do not conform to observations. Humanity has little to fear from the false claims of unprecedented and dangerous global warming. Although his schedule is not final, his stops include: Houston-Austin from Feb 6 to 8; Southern California from Feb 8 to 12, with a talk at Chapman University on Feb 9, additional meeting in San Diego on February 13 & 14 and the key Sigma Xi lecture at the University of New Mexico on Feb 16.

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12 thoughts on “Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup

  1. “…we redistribute de facto the world’s wealth by climate policy…One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. This has almost nothing to do with environmental policy anymore…”

    Quote of the week? More like quote of the decade! This guy brazenly admits that the whole climate change scare story is simply a way to extort vast sums of money from the world’s successful economies. In a nutshell, world communism.

  2. A very interesting link to Climate Audit in “News you can Use” Well worth a look !

    [Moderator's Note: A link would be nice. -REP]

  3. Robert Austin: “Quote of the week? More like quote of the decade!”

    Fully agree, Robert. Be nice if we could get a link as Ben D. notes below your comment — that would make it dynamite… or it would have before the world became too punch-drunk to even feel pain…

  4. In this article it says that Denmark has a high percentage wind power in its electricity generation system (which is correct), that Denmark can balance this primarily with the hydropower nations Norway and Sweden (which is also correct) and that the balancing is done by filling the hydro reservoirs through pumping (which is not correct). Actually, the Danish wind power is exported almost in its entirety due to the rest of Danish electricity being generated in thermal plants (coal fired). Norway and Sweden buy this electricity, thus “saving” the use of our hydro reservoirs. We do not pump water back into reservoirs, they are filled by runoff from rain and melting snow. Which means anything you hear about the apparent succesful mix of wind power and thermal power in Denmark is bogus, unless they mention the convenience of balancing with our hydropower.

  5. The quote comes from:

    http://www.nzz.ch/nachrichten/politik/schweiz/klimapolitik_verteilt_das_weltvermoegen_neu_1.8373227.html

    translation of interview here is better than Google translation:

    http://thegwpf.org/the-climate-record/1877-ipcc-official-climate-policy-is-redistributing-the-worlds-wealth.html

    The quote is headlined in the article but not repeated in the body of the question and answer interview so I assume that it was something that Edenhofer offered without being prompted by a question.

  6. Ah- I like the part on the energy storage. Indeed, the storage of electricity is a huge issue in the world of developing energy and energy tech. There are plans ranging from using salination gradients to sunken air cavities, all in the attempt to ‘store’ electricity.

    However, what people don’t realize is that one of the best ways to ‘store’ energy is to simply make a synthetic hydrocarbon. Especially saturated hydrocarbons (the ones that have a high H-C) ratio store energy very very well. There are a couple of projects on EnergyGridIQ.com that highlight this I came around.

    If you think about it, synthesizing hydrocarbons is a “carbon neutral” process so it appeases environmental activists while simultaneously promoting energy independence and capitalizing on an already established hydrocarbon based infrastructure system.

    And to the comment above- Danish thermal plants are largely waste-to-energy now since they instituted their renewable energy portfolio and have classified waste-to-energy under that bill. However, most of these new wte plants are just retrofitted coal plants… the point being that Denmark’s actual coal consumption is pretty low.

  7. “Provence of Ontario, Canada”
    Nope, Ontario is not in France. That’s where Provence is.
    Ontario is, however, a Province which is trying to be as stupid as the most benighted EuroGreens.

  8. WRT wind-sourced energy efficiencies. In Germany the report cited shows 0.2% to 38%, with a weighted average of 17.5%, of produced electricity coming from wind. As the country is provided with grids that are balanced, across and between grids, losses in one sector can be regained in another. Fluctuations in production can be handled with large variations in a few, rather than smaller variations in all.

    1. At 38% wind-powered levels, obviously a lot of the conventional powerplants spin idle, i.e 4 out of 10, if you leave the other 6 operating fully. At a weighted average of 17.5%, one in five spins idle while the other 4 of five operate completely. That is how the numbers could work, that is.

    What we need to know is whether that is if power wind-sourced INCREASES are handled by system-wide inefficiency increases or localized shutdowns. The efficiency loss should, on the face of it, be different.

    2. Europe is tied together electrically, just as North America is. In Canada, Quebec-produced electrical power is routinely (actually, scandously, as the US pays less for the power than Canadians), sold south of the border. In Germany, one would expect the same to occur. So it is possible that during high windpower times, the electricity in excess of what Germany uses is sold elsewhere. Windpower would then, in theory, be creating the conditions for 100.2% to 138.0% of electricity for Germany. The profit, and efficiciency, lies not in internal use, but in European use.

    So: what is actual, individual, and by grouping, system-wide power-generation fluctuation? Has windpower found an additional source of profit and “efficiency” by exporting additional power from non-conventional sources? Is the actual windpower usage as a continent not 17.5% but 37.5%? Do the true inefficiencies lie outside Germany, where cheaper electricity from Germany replaces more expensive (and more polluting) electricity?

    Again, nothing settled, nothing certain.

  9. Doug;
    a deeply confused posting. As for “balancing”, even in Germany switching and transmission losses are considerable. In North America, they are prohibitive.
    Wind power is an operational and financial disaster on stilts.

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