Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup

Quote of the Week:
“…it is an established rule of the Society, to which they will always adhere, never to give their opinion as a Body upon any subject either of Nature or Art, that comes before them. The ‘advertisement’ to The Philosophical Transactions, 1753 – on establishing the Royal Society [H/t Andrew Montford]

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Number of the Week: 8.7% and 1%

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THIS WEEK:
By Ken Haapala, Executive Vice President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
Bureaucracy v. Science: One of the great disappointments in science over the past few years is the extent to which scientific organizations, which once proudly considers themselves independent, have succumbed to government policy, indeed have become agents of government policy. Once the leadership recognized scientists can have a wide range of opinions on a single issue, even a scientific issue, and zealously guarded this independence. Today, the leadership of many science societies have embraced the official global warming position of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) – that climate change is unusual, which it is not, and that human are responsible for climate change, largely through emissions of carbon dioxide. The view represents an appalling ignorance of the earth’s climate history and fails to establish the scientific basis for the claim that atmospheric carbon dioxide causes substantial global warming.

In Nullius in Verba: On the Word of No One, Andrew Montford, the author of The Hockey Stick Illusion, gives a point by point account of how the Royal Society in London has changed from a once proud defender of science and scientists, regardless of opinion, to an advocate of government policy. In the forward of the pamphlet, MIT Professor Richard Lindzen relates how similar actions have occurred in the US, particularly in the National Research Council (NRC) branch of the National Academy of Science. For example, in 2011 the NRC produced America’s Climate Choices, which is little more than outright global warming advocacy.

In fitting irony, The Wall Street Journal, published a letter by the President of the American Physical Society (APS) who attempted to counter the arguments advanced by the 16 scientists challenging the IPCC position and tried to justify the leadership of APS issuing a statement endorsing the IPCC. He fails and equivocates on the meaning of incontrovertible.

In his farewell address to the Nation in 1961, President Eisenhower cautioned against the power of money from the government in influencing scientific research, and the “danger that public policy could itself become captive of a scientific-technological elite.” Andrew Montford has articulated how this danger comes about. Please see links under “Politicizing Scientific Organizations” and Article # 1.

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Review of 2011 from an Australian Prospective: Palaeoclimatologist Bob Carter, author of Climate: The Counter Consensus and co-author of the 2011 report of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), has reviewed 33 challenges, only a part of the many, to the claim that human carbon dioxide emissions are causing dangerous global warming from an Australian Prospective for 2011. During this time the public was deceived by the Prime Minister and her cabinet and the government adopted a carbon tax, contrary to campaign promises of the Prime Minister. As he states: “The 2011 climate year, then, as judged from both media coverage and new scientific literature, has confirmed the existence of two entirely parallel universes of climate thought.” One universe is that independent scientific thinking and public opinion moving away from climate alarmism. The second universe, represented by the IPCC and the Australian government, is continued projection of climate alarmism. For this compelling review of the year, please see link under “Challenging the Orthodoxy.”
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Nuclear Plants: On February 9, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) approved two new nuclear plants for construction – the first such approvals in over three decades. (There is a plant under construction but that was a TVA plant that was largely constructed, then mothballed in the 1980s.) The chairman of the commission opposed the approval stating that the NRC still needed to learn the lessons from the natural disaster at Fukushima, Japan. He is the former science advisor to Senator Harry Reid who stopped the Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository.

The plant at Fukushima is 40 year old technology built on the coast of Japan in an area known for earthquakes and tsunamis. The terrain is such that it will channel and intensify the heights of tsunamis. When the earthquake hit, shutting off electricity, the plant shut down the reactor as designed, but required electricity from back-up generators to continue to pump water to cool the reactor. The following tsunami destroyed the back-up generators causing the plant to overheat and the subsequent damage.

The reactors that were approved by the NCR are the third generation Westinghouse AP1000 which have passive shutdown (no human actions required) and passive cooling (no pumps needed). The location where the reactors will be built is near Waynesboro, Georgia. It is not seismically active, and the site is at an elevation of about 200 feet and separated from the Atlantic Ocean by about 100 miles of flat land. If a tsunami reaches it, the nation will have much more to worry about than the condition of a nuclear power plant.
It is important to note that due to the excesses of the 1970s, including major cost overruns, changing regulations, plant cancellations, and extreme fear in the public about nuclear energy, the new plants require Federal government loan guarantees, in this instance amounting to a reported $8.3 Billion. The reports state that the total project cost is about $14 Billion.

According to the World Nuclear Association, China now has 14 operating nuclear plants and more than 25 under construction – four of these are a modified AP 1000 design. [Westinghouse is a unit of Toshiba.] The China’s nuclear experts choose the AP 1000 design. “The key factors in choosing this were passive design, simplified safety system, modular construction giving more rapid build and better cost control, and smaller components allowing more ready localization.”

The general concept is to use standardize designs to reduce the total cost of construction and delivery. (This is similar to a large volume home builder using standard designs on many locations.). According to reports, China expects a 20% reduction in the costs of building standardized nuclear power plants as the expertise in building them improves. Although there are some reports on the estimated capital costs of construction per MW of capacity, these are not readily transferable to the US or other nations. Please see links under “Nuclear Energy and Fears.”
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Voodoo Science: The 2007 Assessment Report (AR4) of the IPCC claimed that the ice and snows covering the Himalayan would melt by 2035. This so upset the government of India that it commissioned its Himalayan expert, V.K. Raina, to make an independent study – finding there was no general trend. The report was independently reviewed by Australian glacier expert Cliff Ollier, a TWTW reader, who declared the findings of V.K. Raina were splendid and the IPCC claims are “unsupported, unscientific, and wrong.” [TWTW: 2010/11/13] When presented with the study, IPCC Chairman, Rajendra Pachauri, declared it “Voodoo Science.”

Now a new report using a pair of satellites called GRACE shows that the mass ice balance of the glaciers in the mountain ranges from the Himalayas to Tian Shan to the north has not changed in ten years. Apparently, the ice loss for Greenland and Antarctica is also small. As all too typical, the reports emphasized ice melt at the bottom of the glaciers. Perhaps herein is the Voodoo Science: water that is lost by melting ice at the bottom of glaciers, lower and warmer elevations is replaced by snow and ice accumulating at the top of glaciers, higher and colder elevations. Please see articles under “Changing Earth.”
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Time to Change Sea Levels? Without the assumption of thermal expansion of the oceans from growing warming, which is no longer occurring, the above reference GRACE study estimates a sea level rise of about 1.5 mm a year – or about 15 cm per century (6 inches). As reported in NIPCC 2008, Fred Singer estimated 18 to 20 cm. The 2007 IPCC report, AR4, estimated up to 59 cm (23 inches) and James Hansen of NASA-GISS estimated 600 cm (236 inches, almost 20 feet). The first IPCC Report had estimates up to 367 cm (144 inches, 12 feet). As of now, Fred Singer’s estimate seems to be holding up the best. What will be the estimate in the next IPCC Assessment Report (AR5) that is due out in a year or two? Please see pp 16-19, NIPCC 2008
http://www.sepp.org/publications/NIPCC_final….
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The Cold Sun: Fritz Vahreholt, a leader of the German environmental movement, has shocked many environmentalists by stating that he no longer believes in the predictions of the IPCC and the claim human emissions of carbon dioxide are causing unprecedented and dangerous warming. He also announced the publication of a book the title of which is translated to be The Cold Sun. Jochem Marotzke, the director of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, described the book as representing the views of the climate skeptics. (Presumably climate change is normal and natural.)

In the interview entitled “I Feel Duped on Climate Change”, Vahrenholt’s comments on the global warming advocates are disturbingly appropriate: “The fear mongers are still shaping the political debate. According to the German Advisory Council on Global Change, environmentally minded countries should forcibly bring about reduced consumption for the sake of protecting the climate. This takes us in the direction of an environmental dictatorship. And the fear mongering is also beginning to take effect.” Please see links under “Challenging the Orthodoxy.”
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Protecting the Environment or Denying the Public the Benefit of Natural Resources: Perhaps one of the most glorious events an outdoorsman / environmental steward can experience is hiking Bryce Canyon on a crisp, clear, spring dawn following a light snowfall. The play of light on the multifaceted canyon walls is stunning. The colors changing with a multitude of hues as the sun slowly rises are bewildering. The melting snow, as if tears, darkens the complexion, adding depth and complexity seldom seen anywhere. Any environmental steward would insist Bryce Canyon, Utah, must be preserved.

The announcement of a planned expansion of a coal mine ten miles from Bryce Canyon is cause of concern for any environmental steward. However, given the record of Washington in exaggerating claims of environmental damage from beneficial development of the nation’s resources; the claim of damages from the coal mine must be carefully examined.
This history of those in Washington making dubious claims against using resources for the benefit of the country include failing to permit development of oil resources in a small section of the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve (ANWR) that was so designated, setting aside massive areas of the west and Alaska as wilderness areas, contrary to the interest of the local population, President Clinton declaring over a million acres of generally waste land in Utah as a national monument to prevent the development of a vast coal resource, and Interior Secretary Salazar recently prohibiting uranium mining on one million desolate of acres in Northern Arizona . These are but a few examples of excessive restrictions by Washington that have little basis and do not benefit the public. Please see Article # 3 and as an example of how the nation benefits from the development of natural resources Article #4.
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Number of the Week: 8.7% and 1%: As a result of state legislative mandates, Texas has the largest wind capacity of any state in the US. Covering most of the state, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) is the state grid operator and manager of the wholesale electric market. Using data obtained from ERCOT, Joshua Neeley posted a study on the web site, Master Resource, which includes calculations of the effective wind power in Texas. The peak demand is in the summer and the peak output from wind power is in the winter. ERCOT officially estimates the available capacity from wind power in the summer to be 8.7% of the installed (nameplate) capacity. This percentage is negotiated with the producers, actual production may be less. During peak hour the available capacity may be as little as 1% of nameplate capacity. The wind power is backed up by 1) natural gas turbines and 2) coal plants. Based on reports, the wind farms in Europe may not be doing much better during the current extreme cold. Please see links under “Green (‘Clean’) Energy – Wind and Solar.
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Corrections and Amplifications: Last week TWTW mistakenly stated that the co-discovers of the bacteria that cause most peptic ulcers were veterinarians. Australian surgeon Bruce Messmer promptly corrected the error identifying the co-discovers as Dr Barry Marshall, a gastroenterologist and Dr Robin Warren, a pathologist, working together in Perth, Western Australia. They received the Nobel for Medicine for their important work.

Dr. Messmer notes “that both scientists, working together, followed the principles of proper scientific research in medicine by fulfilling the demands of Koch’s four step-wise postulates which observe the principles of observation and appropriate experimentation / investigation and which, appropriately modified in terminology, are adaptable to all branches of science:

1. XX The microorganism must be found in abundance in all organisms suffering from the disease, but should not be found in healthy organisms.
2. The microorganism must be isolated from a diseased organism and grown in pure culture.
3. The cultured microorganism should cause disease when introduced into a healthy organism.
4. The microorganism must be re-isolated from the inoculated, diseased experimental host and identified as being identical to the original specific causative agent.
XX Koch later abandoned the universalist requirement of the first postulate altogether (i.e. that the microorganism should not be found in healthy organisms) when he discovered asymptomatic carriers of cholera and, later, of typhoid fever.”
As ever, TWTW deeply appreciates being so ably corrected.

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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. American Physical Society Responds
Letter, WSJ, Feb 6, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
[SEPP Comment: The President of APS equivocating on the meaning of incontrovertible.
2. Political Science
By Charles Battig, VA-SEEE, Letter C-Ville, Feb 7, 2012
http://www.c-ville.com/index.php?cat=14140406…
3. What’s the Hold-Up on Alaskan Oil?
My state’s ANWR region could produce one million barrels of oil per day if only Washington let us.
By Sean Parnell, WSJ, Feb 9, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
4. Oil and Gas Boom Lifts U.S. Economy
By Russell Gold, WSJ, Feb 8, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…

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NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Politicizing Scientific Organizations
Nullius in Verba: On the Word of No One
The Royal Society and Climate Change
By Andrew Montford, Forward by Richard Lindzen, GWPF, 2012
http://www.thegwpf.org/images/stories/gwpf-re…
As the Society’s independence has disappeared, so has its former adherence to hard-nosed empirical science and a sober detachment from the political process. Gone is its former focus on natural philosophy as a way to solve the world’s problems and in its place is a new science that seeks to conjure up, in the words of Mencken, ‘an endless series of hobgoblins’ – a stream of apocalyptic visions with which to assail the public. Gone are the doubts and uncertainties that afflict any real scientist, to be replaced with the dull certainties of the politician and the public relations man.
The Perversion Of Science
By Richard Lindzen, GWPF, Feb 9, 2012
http://www.thegwpf.org/opinion-pros-a-cons/49…
[SEPP Comment: Richard Lindzen's forward in Andrew Montford's Nullius in Verba.]
Science: Is the Sun Rising?
Latest on solar
The 2nd Nagoya Workshop on the Relationship between Solar Activity and Climate Changes
Jan 16 & 17, 2012 [H/t Climate Etc]
http://st4a.stelab.nagoya-u.ac.jp/nagoya_work…
[SEPP Comment: For the technically inclined. The slides are not fully explained.]
Commentary: Is the Sun Rising?
The Sun: O Inconstant Star!
By Patrick Michaels, World Climate Report, Feb 6, 2012
http://www.worldclimatereport.com/index.php/2…
[SEPP Comment: Survey of different scientific views of the influence of the sun on the earth's climate.]
Climategate Continued
Acton “tricks” the ICO
By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, Feb 6, 2012
http://climateaudit.org/2012/02/06/acton-tric…
[SEPP Comment: Steve McIntyre demonstrates the inconsistencies in University of East Anglia's statements under the Freedom of Information and the Vice Chancellor Action's assurances to the Parliamentary Committee investigating Climategate.]
Challenging the Orthodoxy
Climate Review: I
By Bob Carter, Quadrant, Feb 6 2012
http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-plane…
[SEPP Comment: The first of four parts. The other parts can be found at this link.]
‘I Feel Duped on Climate Change’
Will reduced solar activity counteract global warming in the coming decades? That is what outgoing German electric utility executive Fritz Vahrenholt claims in a new book. In an interview with SPIEGEL, he argues that the official United Nations forecasts on the severity of climate change are overstated and supported by weak science.
By Olaf Stampf & Gerald Traufetter, Tran. By Christopher Sultan, Der Spiegel, Feb 6, 2012 [H/t Tom Sheahen]
http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1…
Solar Shift Rocks Germany
He was the best-known environmentalist in the German Social Democratic Party (SPD). Now, even Fritz Vahrenholt no longer believes in the predictions of global warming.
By Michael Miersch, FOCUS, Trans. Phillip Mueller, GWPF, Feb 7, 2012
http://www.thegwpf.org/international-news/492…
Body Blow To German Global Warming Movement! Major Media Outlets Unload On “CO2 Lies!”
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Feb 6, 2012 [H/t Anne Debeil]
http://notrickszone.com/2012/02/06/body-blow-…
Germany’s ‘Godfather of Green’ Turns Skeptic
By James Delingpole, Energy Tribune, Feb 9, 2012
http://www.energytribune.com/articles.cfm/978…
“A significant measure of negative feedback to global warming”
By Patrick Michaels, World Climate Report, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.worldclimatereport.com/index.php/2…
[SEPP Comment: Is cloud height a feedback from global warming due to carbon dioxide or a forcing by means other than carbon dioxide?]
Effect of Environmentalists Crying Wolf Over Ozone Thinning Appear
By Tim Ball, A Different Perspective, Feb 9, 2012
http://drtimball.com/2012/effect-of-environme…
Questioning the Orthodoxy
An Unsettling Week For Global Warming’s ‘Settled Science’
By Patrick Michaels, Forbes, Feb 10, 2012 [H/t ICECAP]
http://www.forbes.com/sites/patrickmichaels/2…
Questioning European Green
Energy policy based on renewables will win hearts but won’t protect their owners from frostbite and death due to exposure
By Kevin Myers, Independent, Feb 7, 2012
http://www.independent.ie/opinion/columnists/…
The best article on wind farms you will ever read
By James Delingpole, Telegraph, Feb 8, 2012
http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdeling…
[SEPP Comment: See link immediately above.]
Solar Subsidies Face More Cuts
By Jim Pickard and Pilita Clark, Financial Times, Feb 10, 2012
http://www.thegwpf.org/uk-news/4942-solar-sub…
[SEPP Comment: Partial article, the full article is behind a pay wall]
Expanding the Orthodoxy
EXCLUSIVE: UN chief, aides plot ‘green economy’ agenda at upcoming summit
By George Russell, Fox News, Feb 9, 2012 [H/t Kris Allen]
http://www.foxnews.com/world/2012/02/09/un-ch…
[SEPP Comment: The quest for global environmental governance.]
Seeking a Common Ground
Consensus or not (?)
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc, Feb 6, 2012
http://judithcurry.com/2012/02/06/consensus-o…
[SEPP Comment: The concept of a consensus was contrived by the IPCC; it is both unnecessary and undesirable.]
Trends, change points & hypotheses
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc, Feb 7, 2012
http://judithcurry.com/2012/02/07/trends-chan…
[SEPP Comment: A review of issues to resolve to answer the question: "Why has it warmed so much less than the IPCC predicted?"]
Models v. Observations
New Paper That Further Documents A Muted Atmospheric Water Vapor Trend – “Surface Water Vapor Pressure And Temperature Trends In North America during 1948-2010? By Isaac and Van Wijngaarden 2012
By Roger Pielke Sr, Pielke Climate Science, Feb 10, 2012
http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2012/02…
[SEPP Comment: Additional study showing the water-vapor feedback assumed in the IPCC models is not being found in the climate system. Further documentation that the IPCC models are unsuccessful in basic predictions.]
Changing Weather
Snow, Cold Paralyze Large Parts of Europe
By Staff Writers, AP, Feb 6, 2012
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405297…
Aid sent by helicopter as thousands cut off in Europe
By Staff Writers, Sarajevo (AFP). Feb 8, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Aid_sent_by…
January 4th Warmest in Lower 48, but 9th Coldest Globally Since 1979
By Joe D’Aleo, Weatherbell Analytics, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.weatherbell.com/weather-news/janua…
Australia Where Semi-Permanent Drought Was Promised Repeats Major Flooding of 2011
By Joe D’Aleo, Weatherbell Analytics, Feb 4, 2012
http://www.weatherbell.com/weather-news/austr…
Changing Climate
Sediments from the Enol lake reveal more than 13,500 years of environmental history
By Staff Writers, Spain, SPX, Feb 07, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Sediments_f…
[SEPP Comment: Further confirmation from northern Spain of abrupt climate change at the beginning of the Holocene. Not carefully written.]
Northern Hemisphere temperature patterns in the last 12 centuries
By F. C. Ljungqvist P. J. Krusic, G. Brattström, and H. S. Sundqvist
Climate of the Past, 2011 [H/t Marc Morano, Climate Depot]
http://www.clim-past-discuss.net/7/3349/2011/…
Though we find the amplitude and spatial extent of the 20th century warming is within the range of natural variability over the last 12 centuries, we also find that the rate of warming from the 19th to the 20th century is unprecedented.
[SEPP Comment: They probably would not find the rate of change unprecedented if they went as far back as the early Holocene.]
Changing Seas
Levels all at sea
Bly William Kininmonth, The Australian, Feb 10, 2012 [H/t Des Moore]
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/…
Australia is moving towards Asia at about 7cm per year and plate subduction, especially across the north, is recognised but not well quantified. Continental movement, not climate change, is potentially the biggest contributor to recent local sea level change.
Changing Earth
The Himalayas and nearby peaks have lost no ice in past 10 years, study shows
Meltwater from Asia’s peaks is much less then previously estimated, but lead scientist says the loss of ice caps and glaciers around the world remains a serious concern
By Damian Carrington, Guardian, UK, Feb 8, 2012 [
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/fe…
Study Confirms Hima-Lyin’ About Climate Change
Editorial, IBD, Feb 9, 2012
http://news.investors.com/Article.aspx?id=600…
Earth’s Polar Ice Melting Less Than Thought
Better technology yields better data. The bad news is the extra water from 2003-2010 would fill Lake Erie eight times
By Jason Koebler, US News, Feb 8, 2012 [H/t Debbie Wetlaufer]
http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2012/02/0…
[SEPP Comment: Ignoring the snow and ice that is accumulating.]
U-Boulder study shows global glaciers, ice caps, shedding billions of tons of mass annually
by Staff Writers
Boulder CO (SPX) Feb 09, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/CU_Boulder_…
[SEPP Comment: Another alarmist version.]
Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes
NM regulators repeal carbon cap and trade rules
By Staff Writers, CBS, Feb 7, 2012 [H/t SPPI]
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505245_162-573724…
India Says 27 Nations to Discuss Retaliation on EU Airline Levy
By Karthikeyan Sundaram, Bloomberg, Feb 9, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-02-09/indi…
Energy Issues – Non-US
Mixed messages
The Keystone killers are waiting to ambush the Northern Gateway
By Peter Foster, Financial Post, Feb 7, 2012
http://opinion.financialpost.com/2012/02/07/p…
‘The environmental movement has lost its way’
By Yadullah Hussain, Financial Post, Feb 9, 2012 [H/t Tom Harris]
http://business.financialpost.com/2012/02/09/…
Canadian Oil For China
By Donn Dears, Power for USA, Feb 10, 2012
http://dddusmma.wordpress.com/2012/02/10/cana…
Alberta bitumen royalties to hit nearly $10-billion by 2014-15: forecast
Yadullah Hussain, Financial Post, Feb 10, 2012
http://business.financialpost.com/2012/02/10/…
Canada loses in oil discount
Claudia Cattaneo, Financial Post, Feb 9, 2012
http://business.financialpost.com/2012/02/09/…
[SEPP Comment: There is more oil than the existing pipelines can move, making the need for the rejected Keystone extension obvious. The same issue applies to oil from North Dakota.]
Energy Issues — US
Poisoned Politics of Keystone XL
By Joe Nocera, NYT, Feb 6, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/07/opinion/noc…
Thus, at least one country in North America understands where its national interests lie. Too bad it’s not us.
Enough Oil?
By Jeffrey Folks, American Thinker, Feb 10, 2012
http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/02/enough…
[SEPP Comment: Contrary to the claims of pipeline opponents, the US is a major importer of oil.]
Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?
Peak Oil Scare Fades with Coming Energy Glut
By Al Fin, Energy, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.thegwpf.org/best-of-blogs/4928-pea…
New energy supplies may rock orthodox auto beliefs
By Neil Winton, Detroit News, Feb 8, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120208/O…
Insight: Poland’s shale gas play takes on Russian power
By Michael Kahn, Braden Reddall and Gabriela Baczynska, Reuters, Feb 9, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/02/09/us-…
US Administration’s Control of Oil and Gas
That Jobs Thing Sure Didn’t Last Long
Obama rejects Keystone XL jobs, promotes more wind and solar subsidies. What to do now?
By Paul Driessen, The Moral Liberal, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.themoralliberal.com/2012/02/08/tha…
President Obama’s Record on Oil and Gas Production
By Daniel Simmons, IER, Jan 24, 2012
http://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/201…
Industry slams federal plan to list fracturing chemicals
By Puneet Kollipara, Houston Chronicle, Feb 6, 2012
http://www.chron.com/business/article/Industr…
Return of King Coal?
Proposed Utah mine expansion reflects politics of coal
An obstacle to greening L.A.’s energy portfolio is the DWP’s contract with a Utah plant, which requires the city to buy coal power until 2027. The gritty fuel is now stoking controversy over energy policy, environmental damage and how much consumers should pay to kick the habit.
By Kate Linthicum, LA Times, Feb 7, 2012
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-utah-…
[SEPP Comment: Affordable electricity is now a habit?]
Nuclear Energy and Fears
NRC approves Vogtle reactors
Construction will pick up speed
By Walter Jones and Rob Pavey, Augusta Chronicle, Feb 9, 2012
http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/business/lo…
Nuclear Power in China
By Staff Writers, World Nuclear Association, January, 2012
http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf63.html…
Bird numbers drop around Fukushima
By Staff Writers, UPI, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Bird_number…
[SEPP Comment: This may be a spurious inference. It would be interesting to see someone determine the extent of the decline attributed to radiation and that attributed to the environmental damage from the tsunami.]
Japan’s “Nuclear Village”: too big to fail?
“A Japan without nuclear industry is almost impossible”
By Rudolf ten Hoedt, European Energy Review, Feb 6, 2012
http://www.europeanenergyreview.eu/site/pagin…
Green (“Clean”) Energy – Wind and Solar
U.S. offshore wind moves forward
By Staff Writers, UPI, Feb 6, 2012
http://www.winddaily.com/reports/US_offshore_…
Texas Windpower: EU Energy, Enron Legacy
By Joshua Neeley, Master Resource, Feb 9, 2012
http://www.masterresource.org/2012/02/texas-e…
ERCOT Expects Adequate Power Supplies for Summer (Update)
By Staff Writers, Press Release, May 31, 2011
http://www.ercot.com/news/press_releases/show…
[SEPP Comment: Link tone source for the above.]
EWEA: Renewables Made Up 71.3% of 2011 EU New Capacity
By Staff Writers, POWERnews, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/4383.html?h…
[SEPP Comment: Is that good news?]
Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other
If biofuels are not the answer, what is?
By Martin Livermore, Scientific Alliance, Feb 9, 2012
http://www.scientific-alliance.org/scientific…
All this strongly suggests that oil-fuelled conventional cars (and lorries, and planes and ships) will remain the norm for the next few decades. Manufacturers continue to develop and refine engines, and enormous strides have been made in fuel efficiency. Doubtless something better will come along, just as the internal combustion engine replaced the horse, but an undeveloped or unsuitable technology cannot simply be foisted on an unwilling public by eager politicians. They should encourage research and development, but stop supporting biofuels until they make economic and environmental sense.
Another Obama-Backed Green Energy Company Stumbles
By Matthew Mosk, ABC News, Feb. 6, 2012 [H/t Catherine French]
http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/fisker-automoti…
[SEPP Comment: What logic led the Department of Energy to loan massive amounts of money to a company that never built an automobile on the promise of building a very expensive, hybrid to be followed by an "affordable" $50,000 version?]
Will DOE’s Fisker Doubts Take Down Its Battery Supplier Too?
By Paul Chesser, NLPC, Feb 10, 2012 [H/t Cooler Heads Coalition]
http://nlpc.org/stories/2012/02/09/will-doe%E…
Coming soon: Individual mandate to buy Chevy Volts
Editorial, Washington Examiner, Feb 5, 2012
http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/editori…
[SEPP Comment: A $41,000 electric car is not an affordable car.]
California Dreaming
CPUC: Renewable Market in California Is “Robust”
By Staff Writers, POWERnews, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/4382.html?h…
[SEPP Comment: Plenty of profits to be made when governments pass mandates.]
Review of Recent Scientific Articles by NIPCC
For a full list of articles see
http://www.NIPCCreport.org…
Errors in General Circulation Models: It Could Be “Double” Trouble
Reference: Liu, H., Zhang, M. and Lin, W. 2012. An Investigation of the Initial Development of the Double-ITCZ Warm SST Biases in the CCSM. Journal of Climate 25: 140-155.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/feb/…
Medieval Droughts of the Western United States
Reference: Kleppe, J.A., Brothers, D.S., Kent, G.M., Biondi, F., Jensen, S. and Driscoll, N.W. 2011. Duration and severity of Medieval drought in the Lake Tahoe Basin. Quaternary Science Reviews 30: 3269-3279.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/feb/…
Recovery of Coral Reef Ecosystems after Degradation by Humans
Reference: Kittinger, J.N., Pandolfi, J.M., Blodgett, J.H., Hunt, T.L., Jiang, H., Maly, K., McClenachan, L.E., Schultz, J.K. and Wilcox, B.A. 2011. Historical reconstruction reveals recovery in Hawaiian coral reefs. PLoS ONE 6: e25460.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/feb/…
Eight Centuries of Climate Change in Northeast Spain
Reference: Morellon, M., Valero-Garces, B., Gonzalez-Samperiz, P., Vegas-Vilarrubia, T., Rubio, E., Rieradevall, M., Delgado-Huertas, A., Mata, P., Romero, O., Engstrom, D.R., Lopez-Vicente, M., Navas, A. and Soto, J. 2011. Climate changes and human activities recorded in the sediments of Lake Estanya (NE Spain) during the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age. Journal of Paleolimnology 46: 423-452.
http://www.nipccreport.org/articles/2012/feb/…
Health, Energy, and Climate
Irradiate and SmartWash before you spin your salad
By Staff Writers, Facts and Fears, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.acsh.org/factsfears/newsID.3379/ne…
Environmental Industry
Evangelical group holds firm on ‘pro-life’ link to EPA rule
By Ben Geman, The Hill, Feb 10, 2012
http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/e2-wire/2098…
Little Green Morons
By Alan Caruba, Warning Signs, Feb 8, 2012
http://factsnotfantasy.blogspot.com/2012/02/l…
‘Gasland’ director Joshua Fox vs. the Republican oil lobby
By Dean Kuipers, LA Times, Feb 3, 2012
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/environment…
Other Scientific News
Russia says drillers reach long-buried Antarctic lake
By Matt Smith and Jason Hanna, CNN, Feb 9, 2012 [H/t Bud Bromley]
http://www.cnn.com/2012/02/08/world/europe/ru…
Rather Than Race To The Moon, The U.S. Should Set Its Sights On Mars
By Larry Bell, Forbes, Feb 7, 2012
http://www.forbes.com/sites/larrybell/2012/02…
Surface of Mars an unlikely place for life after 600 million year drought
By Staff Writers, SPX, Feb 07, 2012
http://www.marsdaily.com/reports/Surface_of_M…
Heat and cold damage corals in their own ways
By Staff Writers, SPX, Feb 09, 2012
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Heat_and_co…
Other News that May Be of Interest
“Fire ice” wonder fuel could be under Scottish coast
By Kirsty Topping, Deadline News, Feb 8, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2012/02/08/fire…
[SEPP Comment: During the peak oil / natural gas alarm, one government scientist who was considered among the foremost natural gas experts in the world stated in a Congressional hearing that the Gulf of Mexico has enough methane hydrates to run the country for a thousand years, if they could be recovered. Within six months he was no longer with the government.]

- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – -

BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
Inconclusive Melting As Romm Skips Debate
By Sam Kazman, Global Warming.org, Feb 8, 2012
http://www.globalwarming.org/2012/02/08/incon…
[SEPP Comment: A bit of levity. And with all that melting ice, the sea levels did not rise and Pacific islands did not disappear into the briny deep.]

***

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: From February 6 to 17, 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. His public talks include (no reservations needed):

Feb 14 SAN DIEGO
4 – 6 pm Cal State Univ, San Diego, Aztec Hall, Room 107

Feb 15 ALBUQUERQUE, NM
6-8pm Public Lecture. at UNM Law School For info visit
http://www.riograndefoundation.org…

Feb 16 ALBUQUERQUE, NM
5pm SIGMA XI LECTURE at Univ of NM Conference Center, Room C

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15 thoughts on “Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup

  1. Reblogged this on The GOLDEN RULE and commented:
    In reblogging this (or any) WUWT post, I may be being lazy but two other aims are achieved. A virtually unequivocal support for his blog and a little extra exposure to the world. Miniscule, actually but it should all add up to something useful. In Anthony’s Roundup, some particularly interesting items are to be found, e.g.:

  2. You missed one thing- the Royal Society first actually become complicit and corrupted by industry first- specifically Genetic Modification – maybe Monsanto. A researcher had got published a paper in the Lancet that showed that GM potatoes gave rats ill effects. The president and several other senior Royal Society members were and perhaps had been paid consultants on GM so naturally they attacked the integrity of the researcher through the Royal Society rather than suggesting this paper was not that significant and let’s do more experiments to try to prove or disprove the research. The fact that subsequently GM derived products have been eaten by millions of people subsequently with no measured ill effects is not that important rather that the scientific method had been overriden by idiot ideas that don’t even further the proponents causes.

  3. “Time to Change Sea Levels?”

    Speaking of which, when can we expect an update from U. Colorado on sea levels? We’ve been looking at the same number since last September.

  4. @crosspatch says:
    February 12, 2012 at 11:33 pm
    “Time to Change Sea Levels?”

    Speaking of which, when can we expect an update from U. Colorado on sea levels? We’ve been looking at the same number since last September.
    =======================================================================
    Perhaps they have been updating the number monthly, eh?

  5. On extra item under energy. It increasingly appears that Rossi’s E-cat ‘fusion’ device is not what it seems (sadly but unsurprisingly). An Australian engineer has found a way that the ‘extra’ energy claimed to be the result of LENR is, in fact, the result of a simple (and possibly suspicious) wiring error:

    http://nextbigfuture.com/2012/02/australian-engineer-says-wiring-errors.html

    However, there are plenty of other LENR projects proceeding (eg: Polywell) so nil deperandum – yet.

  6. It looks like a missed story re IPCC and Sea Levels and Maldives

    http://devconsultancygroup.blogspot.com/2012/02/ipcc-receives-further-credibility-blow.html

    IPCC receives a further credibility blow: Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner resigns as expert reviewer

    The problems to IPCC never seems to end. Vahrenholt, the high profile German scientist made headlines last week:
    ‘The IPCC is more of a political than a scientific body. As a rapporteur on renewable energy, I witnessed how thin the factual basis is for predictions that are made at the IPCC.”

    Now a Swedish scientist quits the IPCC. Here’s the letter Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner faxed the IPCC:

    I hereby resign as expert-reviewer of Chapter 13: Sea Level Changes. I do this for two reasons:

    (1) TIME:

    A few days ago I noted that the deadline is set at February 10, instead of Mach 10 that I had noted by mistake.

    (2) QUALITY:

    Having glanced through Chapter 13, I find it to be of such low quality that a serious review would require very much extra work. At previous expert-reviews of mine (2000, 2006), all comments and corrections were neglected, despite their firm anchoring in facts.

    The so-called authors of Chapter 13 seem to be a collection of all those who have written anything about sea level changes that agrees with the concept of IPCC, despite that fact that many of those papers were of a very low quality.

    To this group is added some persons who have absolutely no insight to sea level changes. It is an insult that such persons are named “authors”.

    – Rune Grand Graversen (Sweden) is a Ph.D. student in meteorology
    – Gunnar Myhre (Norway) seems to be fully limited to meteorology
    – Ruth Mottram (Denmark) is post.doc. in meteorology (glaciology)

    Just to check my Nordic country fellows are all “non-specialists” who have nothing to contribute in sea level. Why are they there? But so typical!

    All the debate and questioning has been shamelessly left out; not even referred to. And still, there is most probably within that material, the reality is to be found.

    Today, the President of the Maldives had to resign. Finally, reality caught up with his illusions about sea level changes.

    So should most of the Chapter 13 authors do, too – for the benefit of science. And by this I resign as expert reviewer

    Stockholm, February 7, 2012
    Nils-Axel Mörner
    Sea Level Expert

    ==========
    Maldives:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/6426091/Maldives-underwater-cabinet-meeting-was-a-sorry-stunt.html?state=target

    Ah, originally published in the Spectator http://www.spectator.co.uk/coffeehouse/5595813/why-the-maldives-arent-sinking.thtml

    http://www.sasnet.lu.se/pdf/letternasheed.pdf

    To present:

    http://iceagenow.info/2011/12/satellite-sea-level-data-tilted-distort-figures-sea-level-expert/

    Satellite sea-level data ’tilted to distort figures,’ says expert
    British member of IPCC delegation admits, ‘We had to do so, otherwise there would be no trend.’
    Apocalyptic warnings that islands such as the Maldives will sink beneath the waves are “nonsense,” says Nils-Axel Mörner, former head of the Paleogeophysics and Geodynamics department at Stockholm University in Sweden. Any rise in sea levels has to do with natural historic fluctuations.

    At this year’s climate conference in Durban, South Africa, Mohammed Nasheed, President of the Maldives, warned that his country was ‘an island nation that may slip beneath the waves if all this talk on climate does not lead to action soon’.

    ‘We are drowning, our nation will disappear, we have to relocate the people,’ Nasheed repeatedly claims.

    “If this is what President Nasheed believes, it seems strange that he has authorised the building of many large waterside hotels and 11 new airports,” says Mörner. “Or could it perhaps be that he wants to take a cut of the $30 billion fund agreed at an accord in Copenhagen for the poorest nations hit by ‘global warming’?”

  7. Please let TWTW know that this week’s edition is chock full of grammatical errors, almost as if it were written by an ESL student in places. This is unusual for their newsletters, and may reduce their credibility. (The content IS up to their usual high standards.)

  8. crosspatch says:
    February 12, 2012 at 11:33 pm

    “Time to Change Sea Levels?”

    Speaking of which, when can we expect an update from U. Colorado on sea levels? We’ve been looking at the same number since last September.
    ================================================
    I think they got tired of being laughed at…… go here ……. http://www.aviso.oceanobs.com/en/news/ocean-indicators/mean-sea-level/products-images/

    That goofy CU graphic is an abomination of any math or science. They conflate data sets and omit others to get the trend they want. I don’t know why people simply accepted that nonsense. Using similar methodology I put together the true decadal temp trend…… http://suyts.wordpress.com/2012/01/11/the-true-decadal-temp-trend/

  9. For me it is very difficult to classify supporters for and against global warming caused by CO2 content in the atmosphere. How I used logic and knowledge of dimensional relationships in our solar system, may declare and confirm mathematically that the human factor is absolutely irrelevant to climate change. It can be done only heavenly bodies in their mutual reactions. How does climate change in the interactions between the chain, it can be concluded much-much easier than most people think of you now. Whatever more I read your discussion and argument, the more I am convinced in my mathematical proof.
    I can publish them with their contractual obligations and benefits.
    So far I have not found any to anyone who would be interested in my theory. Everyone thinks they are right, especially when their claims are based on foreign studies that are not based on solid evidence.

  10. http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/meeting-energy-demand/energy-markets/3884-planning-electric-future-technical-update.pdf

    The above is a Dec 2011 report from The UK Department of Energy and Climate Change (sic)

    Amongst all the BS about carbon (soot? What soot?) are these sections buried half-way through it.

    98
    We have also modelled the real-world impacts of de-rated capacity margins falling to around five per cent, which potentially happens in 2020 in the ‘stress test’, and later in the 2020s in the central scenario. In such a year we see an average level of lost load of around 8 GWh. This would be likely to result in multiple voltage reductions in a typical year, and potentially more serious consequences (for example, power cuts affecting millions of homes) in atypical years (such as cold years with low wind), creating significant costs to
    the economy. Such low margins would also be likely to result in highly volatile prices in wholesale markets which would be likely to impact on consumer bills.

    And the kicker …

    100
    The central scenario indicates that a capacity problem does not arise until the 2020s, while the stress test indicates that a potential capacity problem arises in the second half of this decade

  11. Another correction needed:

    “Without the assumption of thermal expansion of the oceans from growing warming, which is no longer occurring…” is actually quite incorrect. Ocean warming is still continuing largely unchanged.

    However the pattern of where the ocean is warming has changed. Ocean circulation is drawing more heat from the surface level down to the middle depths, replacing the surface water with colder water from below. Hence the surface warming has plateaued of late, also effecting air temperatures. But the middle layers of the ocean are still warming,

    You can see this from the graphs of the ARGO data at NODC here http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/3M_HEAT_CONTENT/ Compare the first 2 graphs in the animated series – OHC for 0-700 metres and 0-2000 metres. Using a mark one eyeball that’s about 10^22 joules per year over the last 5 years. Or around 5 Hiroshima Bombs per second.

    Still warming don’t you think?

  12. Speaking of the NIPCC, it is interesting that the Heartland Institute says of the NIPCC that “we sponsor the
    NIPCC to undermine the official United Nation’s IPCC reports”. That doesn’t quite match the NIPCC’s own view of itself.

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