About that almost ‘Carrington Event’ two weeks ago

Massive X6.9 class solar flare, August 9, 2011...

Massive X6.9 class solar flare, August 9, 2011. While this flare produced a coronal mass ejection (CME), this CME is not traveling towards the Earth, and no local effects are expected. Sun Unleashes X6.9 Class Flare, NASA press release dated 08.09.2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Lots of people talking about this article in the UK daily Mail:

A near miss for Earth: Solar flare that could have knocked out power, cars and phones came so close two weeks ago

  • Earth has narrowly missed electromagnetic pulses caused by solar flares
  • If they had hit, the pulses could have knocked out electrical equipment over continent-scale regions

An electromagnetic pulse that could have knocked electrical equipment over continent-scale regions barely missed Earth two weeks ago, it has been revealed.

Source: (h/t Jack Simmons)

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2382527/A-near-miss-Earth-Devastating-electromagnetic-pulses-knocked-power-cars-phones-occured-weeks-ago.html

But, not so fast…NASA’s Dr. Tony Phillips of Spaceweather.com writes:

Many readers are asking about a report in the Washington Examiner, which states that a Carrington-class solar storm narrowly missed Earth two weeks ago. There was no Carrington-class solar storm two weeks ago. On the contrary, solar activity was low throughout the month of July.

The report is erroneous.

The possibility of such a storm is, however, worth thinking about: A modern Carrington event would cause significant damage to our high-tech society.

There is even a recent SciFi movie revolving around the idea which seems to have gone straight to video:

carrington_event_movie

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224 Responses to About that almost ‘Carrington Event’ two weeks ago

  1. Chris B says:

    “…. just people getting more crazy.”

  2. Another strong storm hit in May 1921:
    From http://www.tjugofyra7.se/msb/Arkiv/Avdelningar/Nyheter/Svar-solstorm-drabbade-Karlstad-1921/
    2012-04-20

    Severe solar storm hit Karlstad 1921
    One of the most severe effects of solar storms in Sweden hit the telephone station in Karlstad the night before Whitsunday in 1921. The station, then one of the first in Sweden, caught fire and the damages were made worse by the destruction of the system in place to alert the fire department.

    During Easter 1921 the Northern Hemisphere was hit by a severe solar storm. Already the night before Whitsunday the telephone station in Karlstad had suffered disturbances when fuses and circuit breakers had burned out and tripped.

    Around 2 am at Whitsunday night the 15th May [1921] a neighbor watched the wires and cables leading to the telephone station begin to glow, soon causing the station to catch fire. A policeman on patrol tried to activate a fire alarm installation, but since that did not had any reaction, a cyclist was sent to alert the fire station.

    The fire in the telephone station caused all fire alarm installations to malfunction causing confusion at the fire station. The message from the cyclist brought clarity and action, but still with 20 minutes delay. The destruction was great and the next day the director of the Telephone Line Technical Service, F.R.Fredericksson from Goteborg arrived with the news that the disturbances were felt everywhere in the Swedish Telephone Net, especially in Svealand, but nowhere as severe as in Karlstad.

    The Telegraph Company [who was in charge of the Telephone Network] assured everybody that no resources would be spared. Additional personnel from Goteborg and Orebro were called in to work 24/7 in three shifts. A temporary telephone station was set up within a few days, but initially only the most important customers were connected.

    The newspapers in Karlstad followed the repair work from day to day and reported that businesses were paralyzed. The fire led to severe problems for banks and the Chamber of Commerce was talking about ‘Force Majeure’. Every day, businesses and banks would announce on the newspapers’ front page that their phone number was again ready for use.

    The fire and the damages due to the solar storm became an expensive event for the Telegraph Company. The cost was computed to reach 200,000 kronor and, according to the Nya Wermland paper, the station was insured for 177,000 kronor, but when the insurance was up for renewal on April 1st it had been allowed to lapse as a cost-cutting measure.
    ———
    These storms are real and dangerous

  3. “During Easter 1921 …” should, of course, be “Over Pentecost 1921 …”

  4. Anthony Watts says:

    @Leif, agreed.

    It isn’t a matter of “if” we’ll get another Carrington type event, it is simply a matter of when. If we aren’t prepared, we’ll be back into the pre-industrial era in a few seconds.

  5. jimmi_the_dalek says:

    At some point such an event will occur. At some point a major asteroid impact will occur. In the short term the lesson is : Don’t believe anything in the Daily Mail without checking a reliable source.

  6. Pamela Gray says:

    I for one would not mind losing my cell phone connectivity along with ready computer access. I yearn for the days of a party line and a big black heavy phone along with a smelly inky newspaper to read. Ready access to connectivity and news has raised my stress levels immeasurably.

  7. Russ Hatch says:

    If it happens it will be interesting to see how the greenies react. they seem to want us to be in the preindustrial era anyway.

  8. Bennett In Vermont says:

    The problem is that anyone who needed to buy anything with a credit or debit card would probably be truly screwed.

    I wonder how long it would take the electronic banking system to get back up to speed?

  9. Cal Smith says:

    As sure as the “If” should be “when” will be the claims that it would not have been as bad if it weren’t for the nasty CO2 in the air.

  10. CRS, DrPH says:

    This threat is real & very dangerous, better to spend money protecting our grid vs. CAGW protection. Lots of reading material here: http://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/category/homeland-security/infrastructure-and-emp/

  11. wayne says:

    Hey, that one’s right up there in scientific realism ratings with the “Absolute Zero” movie!
    Loving to scare people who love to be scared (or don’t know better than being)

    The one thing that made the 1859(?) event “special” was the fact that telegraphs were a brand new technology. They actually has single wires, no breaks, transformers, or suppressors, from New York to Kansas City, many hundreds of miles, and this is what can generate quite a d.c. jolt in a magnetic storm, it’s the unbroken length of the wire in a varying magnetic field, not really a.c. but slow varying d.c.. As far as something as small as a cars, or personal computer, or a watches ceasing to work is one huge stretch of the imagination to me. If you know how electricity, magnetic fields strengths, frequencies and distances are related just calculate it for yourself and see if you think this is as dangerous as many portray it.

    As for the Montreal transformers that has past problems a few decades ago it is much the same scenario with huge transforms unprotected (and very sensitive) for large stray d.c. fluxes over long hauls I do believe most power companies learned a good lesson there and have since protected their equipment.

    Seems this topic keeps popping up here at wuwt regularly and this seems about as bad as the haarp hype.

    Maybe I’m wrong but that is how I view this Carrington topic. If I am incorrect and power companies have all left themselves wide-open for huge losses let me know specifically where and why (preferably in the physics and numbers).

    But I admit, this is an interesting topic if nothing else but to dismiss the misunderstanding.

  12. Recent analysis http://www.leif.org/EOS/swsv130015.pdf suggests that the Carrington-event was not a ’500-yr flood’ type event, but may happen a lot more frequently. ‘When’ may not be all that far off.

  13. Pete Olson says:

    Don’t understand why that movie went straight to video with an all-star cast like that…

  14. Blade says:

    If they had hit, the pulses could have knocked out electrical equipment over continent-scale regions

    Good, we need this as a teachable moment. The AGW death cult is intent on returning us to both the climate and the technological state of pre-1880. Coincidentally this is the pre-electrical era.

    One day, then a week, then two weeks without electricity for their TV, phones, tablets, hot water, heat and cooking will re-calibrate the mindset of population, changing them from being spoiled and stupid back to thankful.

    Once power is restored the AGW luddite fanatics will open their mouthes at their peril.

  15. Dan in california. says:

    So what’s the comparison of a Carrington event with an EMP from a nuke blast in the stratosphere? The effects of them have been well studied. I would guess the Carrington event would contain a lot less of the higher frequency stuff and therefore do a lot less damage to smaller systems.

  16. OssQss says:

    If you sign up here,,,,, you would know of the issue well ahead of most.

    https://pss.swpc.noaa.gov/LoginWebForm.aspx?ReturnUrl=%2fproductsubscriptionservice%2f

    One must ask of themselves,,,,, how would I do with no power, internet, cell, etc..

    Being in a hurricane zone,,, it might be a bit different perspective for me.

    How would city dwellers do?

  17. ossqss says:

    BTW, if you sign up for space weather alerts, make sue you understand how to use the filters.

    Lessons learned from these shoes ;-)

  18. dEEBEE says:

    And global warming, oops Climate Change will make it likelier that such events devastate us

  19. OssQss says:

    While this is not such an event in a solar perspective. It has a similar impact with respect to energy none the less.

    Yep, it is old, but is it any different/lesser today?

  20. Regnad Kcin says:

    @Dan So what’s the comparison of a Carrington event with an EMP from a nuke blast in the stratosphere?
    Well there is the book One Second After (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One_Second_After)
    which is a supposedly well researched novel on the effects of an EMP attack on the continental US. Not pretty, but entirely plausible.

  21. Patrick says:

    “Bennett In Vermont says:

    August 2, 2013 at 6:17 pm

    I wonder how long it would take the electronic banking system to get back up to speed?”

    Large sections of the electronic banking system would be unavailable for weeks, years or even permanently. I know from experience that most banks, their branches, datacentres and communications networks, are in no way prepared to deal with an event like this.

  22. Jtom says:

    In a situation like a hurricane, you have most of the country to use as a staging area to bring in equipment and supplies. Imagine the grid going down across the hemispere. Nukes would shut down. Unquestionably there would be damage to the grid by sudden load imbalances. Breakers would trip throughout the network. You need to get men, parts and equipment all over the country, but there’s no power. Must fuel planes by handpump or emergency generator (which likely will be taken away by some government agency!) Can’t pump fuel into cars, either, except by hand. Can’t manufacture any special parts. How do you get the right people to the right places? Underground landlines might still work off of central office batteries, but forget the cellphone network. No way to communicate with the experts you need. The grid would have to be boot-strapped. Power plants must be restarted and parts of the grid connected in deliberate fashion to avoid more load imbalances, or undiscovered equipment failures.

    How long would this take? What would major cities be like after week-long blackouts, no food deliveries, and essentially no way to cook the food? No running water, backed up sewage. No garbage collection. Police scrambling to maintain order. I can’t even imagine.

    Before Dr. Svalgaard enlightened us that Carrington events were likely more frequent than a 500 year average I figured there was a 16 per cent chance of one in my lifetime (now down to about a five per cent chance, since my future life expectancy has grown considerably shorter) Now I have to raise the threat level of one. Guess I’ll add to my stock of emergency supplies.

    At least the ill effects of global warming wouldn’t literally happen over night. :-)

  23. Les Francis says:

    Re iterate what Anthony post scripted on Dr. Svalgaards post above.
    I’ll repeat it again
    [quote] It isn’t a matter of “if” we’ll get another Carrington type event, it is simply a matter of when. If we aren’t prepared, we’ll be back into the pre-industrial era in a few seconds.[/quote]

    PRE Industrial era

    Forget about internet banking or any banking for that matter.
    You know the line from the Gilligans Island theme? – “:No Phones, No lights, No motor cars, not a single luxury”:.
    Survival will be the premium.

  24. Rational Db8 says:

    @Blade says: August 2, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    Good, we need this as a teachable moment. The AGW death cult is intent on returning us to both the climate and the technological state of pre-1880. Coincidentally this is the pre-electrical era.

    One day, then a week, then two weeks without electricity for their TV, phones, tablets, hot water, heat and cooking will re-calibrate the mindset of population, changing them from being spoiled and stupid back to thankful.

    MANY many people would die. I sure as heck wouldn’t be wishing this one anyone. Take the southwest for example – you plunge major cities like Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Tuscon into power outage, and it happens to be summer with 115 degree temperatures, and a lot of people start dying pretty blasted quickly – or even if it’s the very very common 105-110 temps throughout the SW. Or northern cities in the winter with no heat, same result. And if the EMP/Solar flare is large enough to actually affect not just the electric grid, but also transportation, suddenly major cities all over the nation have NO food within a very few days. And what about water? How do people manage to get water, when pumping stations are down without electricity – that would be a massive problem within the first day or two…

    This wouldn’t be a “teachable moment” unless you like the idea of one he!! of a brutal lesson with possibly millions dead. But I’ll grant you it would certainly re-arrange priorities for all those who survive lickety split. Personally, I’ll wish for a re-alignment that’s a little less gruesome and severe.

  25. Regnad Kcin says:

    And the Critical National Infrastructures Report (http://www.empcommission.org/docs/A2473-EMP_Commission-7MB.pdf) states:
    “Geomagnetic Storms. Probably one of the most famous and severe effects from solar storms occurred on March 13, 1989. On this day, several major impacts occurred to the power grids in North America and the United Kingdom. This included the complete blackout of the Hydro-Quebec power system and damage to two 400/275 kV autotransformers in southern England. In addition, at the Salem nuclear power plant in New Jersey a 1200 MVA, 500 kV transformer was damaged beyond repair when portions of its
    structure failed due to thermal stress. The failure was caused by stray magnetic flux
    impinging on the transformer core. Fortunately, a replacement transformer was readily
    available; otherwise the plant would have been down for a year, which is the normal
    delivery time for larger power transformers.”

    This is the biggy, is there a shortage of spares or not??

  26. Rational Db8 says:

    Anyone happen to know if there are good estimates about how the Carrington event flare(s) would fall on today’s scale? There were several X class flares in May of this year… perhaps one or more of those was responsible for a “carrington” level flare had the Earth been two weeks further advanced in it’s orbit? I did a quick search and just found that the Carrington was a “white light flare” but heck if I know how that fits into the current classification scale….

  27. Rational Db8 says:

    @ Regnad Kcin says: August 2, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    It’s my understanding that they pretty much don’t keep any spares to speak of for the biggest transformers, and that those would be quite vulnerable – and that it takes one to two YEARS to gt replacements (and that assumes that one of the few places that makes them isn’t also hit and knocked into the stone age too, I guess).

  28. Regnad Kcin says:

    (http://www.empcommission.org/docs/A2473-EMP_Commission-7MB.pdf)
    “Geomagnetic storms represent an approximation to an E3-induced voltage effect. The
    experience to date is of events that may be orders of magnitude smaller in scope and less
    severe than that expected from an EMP — although the Commission has also investigated
    the impact of a 100-year superstorm. The induced geomagnetic superstorm currents
    in the transmission lines will cause hundreds of high voltage transformers to saturate,
    creating a severe reactive load in the power system leading to voltage collapse in the
    affected area and damage to elements of the transmission system. The nature of this
    threat did not allow for experimental testing of the E3 effect, so this historical record is
    the best information on the effect”

  29. Mike Wryley says:

    Anthony,
    Not to worry, a good share of the population is already pre-enlightenment era, should be a good match.

  30. My apologies for repeating a false report.

    However, the threat is very real.

    The really scary thing about an Electromagnetic Pulses (EMP), both natural and man-made, is there is a full range of frequencies produced with great power. This means every electrical circuit, from a thousand mile long power line to a mm long wire in a pacemaker becomes an antenna. All of these antennas pick up the pulse at their frequency and transform it into a very high voltage and current event, overloading their respective circuits. Remember, you have either the sun or a nuclear explosion behind all those frequencies.

    If my memory serves me right, the first instance of a man-made EMP took place during a high altitude test of a nuclear device over Hawaii. Many circuits were damaged or destroyed. It was a completely unexpected side effect of a nuclear detonation. All the other tests were on or under the ground or at a low altitude, too low to transmit the effect over much of a distance.

    The only thing to be done is to wrap your circuit inside a Faraday cage.

    A power company may want to consider storing its field vehicles in garages serving as Faraday cages as well. Included might be replacement coils for power plant generators. Or perhaps it might make sense to shield power plants with large Faraday cages.

    Dittos for hospitals, police departments, computer server farms, etc.

    Not only are we vulnerable to the Carrington effect but a rogue nation could launch a missile topped with a device designed with an enhanced EMP effect. You wouldn’t have to get close, just over a major region of the country.

    Imagine the chaos such a simple weapon could cause.

  31. jarthuroriginal is my WordPress.com account name.

    My name is Jack Simmons.

    Sorry about any confusion.

  32. Rational Db8 says:
    August 2, 2013 at 8:18 pm
    Anyone happen to know if there are good estimates about how the Carrington event flare(s) would fall on today’s scale? There were several X class flares in May of this year
    Our best estimate of the X-ray flux from the Carrington Event is X45 which is 45 times stronger than an X1 event

  33. Rational Db8 says:

    @jarthuroriginal

    I believe you are thinking of the Starfish prime test over Johnson island, very nearly 900 miles away from Hawaii. It wasn’t the first man-made EMP – but it did have a far far greater EMP effect than expected, and it affected electronics etc., on Hawaii (talk about a terrifying concept!). From the notoriously incorrect but oh so convenient Wiki, just to get you started if you are interested in details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Starfish_Prime

    Apparently there is some intelligence suggesting that N. Korea has been working on an EMP divice capable of attacking the USA directly, with a suspected south polar orbit/vector of attack. I have no idea how legitimate the claim is, or how close they might be to being able to accomplish this. Any large nuke set off from about 200 miles up – a single blast – would wipe out much of the entire USA – depending on how big the nuke anyhow. I don’t have a handy link, but have previously been able to find some maps even showing concentric circles for just how much of the USA would be affected from a single ballistic high atmosphere nuke centered over the USA, based on size and also altitude. It’s a disconcerting thought when one realizes how many nuclear nations are also capable of launching a high altitude bomb that way – and all it would take is one to do massive damage to our infrastructure.

    The true absurdity of it all is that our government has known this full well for decades, and the estimates of the cost to significantly harden our infrastructure is utterly miniscule compared to the amount being spent towards global warming b.s.

  34. Rational Db8 says:

    @ Leif Svalgaard says: August 2, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    THANK YOU Leif! What’s the biggest recorded X class that you can recall offhand? Or if anyone has a link handy to a site listing all the really big ones we’ve recorded over an extended timeframe (regardless of the direction of the blast)….

  35. Rational Db8 says:

    Well, they couldn’thave been referring to the may x class flares then – those weren’t anywhere close to an X45:

    from spaceweather.com:

    Third Update: May 14, 9 a.m. EDT

    The sun emitted a third significant solar flare in under 24 hours, peaking at 9:11 p.m. EDT on May 13, 2013. This flare is classified as an X3.2 flare. This is the strongest X-class flare of 2013 so far, surpassing in strength the two X-class flares that occurred earlier in the 24-hour period.

    The flare was also associated with a coronal mass ejection, or CME. The CME began at 9:30 p.m. EDT and was not Earth-directed. Experimental NASA research models show that the CME left the sun at approximately 1,400 miles per second, which is particularly fast for a CME. The models suggest that it will catch up to the two CMEs associated with the earlier flares. The merged cloud of solar material will pass by the Spitzer spacecraft and may give a glancing blow to the STEREO-B and Epoxi spacecraft. Their mission operators have been notified. If warranted, operators can put spacecraft into safe mode to protect the instruments from solar material.

  36. Rational Db8 says:
    August 2, 2013 at 9:12 pm
    THANK YOU Leif! What’s the biggest recorded X class that you can recall offhand?
    X35 in 2003. See the discussion in the link I gave http://www.leif.org/EOS/swsv130015.pdf

  37. Tarraganda says:

    May 1921 – Telegraph Services interupted and Aurora observed in Southern Australia:

    from: The Argus (Melbourne, Vic.) Tuesday 17 May 1921
    http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/1757393?searchTerm=telephone&searchLimits=l-decade=192|||l-month=05|||l-year=1921|||sortby=dateAsc

  38. otsar says:

    It is interesting that no one has addressed what happens at the ends of the many long pipelines. The lower frequencies do penetrate the surface and do induce large telluric currents.

  39. highflight56433 says:

    When this happens, the large grocery stores in the affected area will run out of food within days. Chaos will follow. Those of us with a store of food, and garden areas, and independent water sources will be much better off. Any amount of preparation for a disaster is better than no preparation. Not to live in fear of such, but to be realistic that the “when” does happen. Water, food, fuel, protection, etc. Be smart.

  40. dp says:

    How many ambitious global, national, regional, state, county, city, township, and ghetto civil and military leaders will look out at the carnage produced by a Carrington event and ask “If not now, when?” and then launch all out war against their weakest neighbor? I think the answer is: more than 1. I think, in fact, it will be the new norm, and old frontiers will be forever changed and society with it. Civilization will pause and climate will not be discussed.

  41. mesocyclone says:

    There are differences between EMP and a CME event. EMP has very high frequency (fast rise time) electric fields, followed later by long lasting (tens of minutes) strong geomagnetic storm.

    The former would represent a danger to lots of electronic devices, even unconnected to the power system. It would also represent a danger to the power system.

    The later would *destroy* the power system, especially custom-made high voltage/high power transformers upon which our grid is absolutely reliant.

    And no, we don’t have nearly enough spares, and it would take many months for them to be made overseas (our industry would be dark and useless).

    There are congress-critters who keep trying to get some money put into the budget to solve this. It wouldn’t take but a few tens of billions to keep the power system alive, and critical communications and computing infrastructure sort of intact.

    Without that, tens of millions would probably die, unless overseas help could transport food to us and feed us. Many would die anyway – from violence and shortages before any help arrived.

    It is criminal that the US has not protected itself against these events, especially since an EMP attack is *easier* than an ICBM attack (no re-entry vehicle needed). To do grave damage to the US, an asymmetric enemy like Iran or North Korea need merely orbit a nuke – even a primitive, low-yield one, and set it off over the center of the country.

  42. highflight56433 says:

    Listen to what mesocyclone says:
    August 2, 2013 at 9:53 pm

  43. @Leif, RE: Karlstad 1921
    That anecdote was about the worst hit station in an event 92 years ago. Other stations suffered less. People learned.

    Was there a repeat in 1921 of US telegraphs sparking and starting fires from the 1859 event? A NY Central Signal and Switch yard and fire in a control tower. One telegraph building burned. But given the number of potential places of failure, civilization came through and learned some more. http://www.solarstorms.org/SRefStorms.html

    Have electrical engineers learned nothing from 92 years of technology, engineering, and grid management? Grids manage to continue operation through all but the worst electrical storms. A Carrington EMP gives us hours of warning. I suppose we have one benefit from wind-farm installations: Grid operators have learned to work with live, ever changing, transmission line loads. Fortunately more and more of our communications are on non-conducting fiber-optic.

    By powering down transmission lines and satellites ahead of time, power companies can partially mitigate the impact of voltage spikes caused by the solar storm.
    …At least, that’s the hope. Unfortunately, it sounds like this system is not entirely ready. A 2010 Grid Reliability and Infrastructure Defense Act of the U.S. Congress predicts that it may cost $100 million to protect the United States’ power grid against solar EMPs. – GreekGeek fromFox News

    That is million, not billion.
    Yes, there is some engineering to do, if it hasn’t already been done. And prudent precautions in case of a day’s warning of an event. But I’m smelling a “Y2K” doomsday hype.

    Frankly, we have much more to worry about from an unstable grid as a consequence of politically generated disasters from increases in wind power and losses in coal-fired base load generation. FERC may be charged with protecting us from EMP, but they are falling down on the job in their everyday duties.

    “Solar Storm Threat Analysis”, James A. Marusek, Impact 2007 (PDF 29 pgs, 0.8 MB)

  44. Correction. instead of EMP I meant CME GMS (geomagnetic storm)

  45. Kevin Lohse says:

    Much of the West’s essential electronic comms network has been hardened against the EMP from nuclear device(s). The rationale behind the development of the Net was to maintain comms in a nuclear exchange. Would not these measures provide a degree of protection against a Carrington event? Another point is that we would have warning of a Carrington event. Would this be long enough to enable emergency measures to be taken such as closing down power generation on the night side of the Earth, and taking similar measures in the time available on the day side while the event is building to dangerous levels?

  46. cba says:


    August 2, 2013 at 8:29 pm
    My apologies for repeating a false report.

    However, the threat is very real.

    The really scary thing about an Electromagnetic Pulses (EMP), both natural and man-made, is there is a full range of frequencies produced with great power. This means every electrical circuit, from a thousand mile long power line to a mm long wire in a pacemaker becomes an antenna. All of these antennas pick up the pulse at their frequency and transform it into a very high voltage and current event, overloading their respective circuits. Remember, you have either the sun or a nuclear explosion behind all those frequencies.

    If my memory serves me right, the first instance of a man-made EMP took place during a high altitude test of a nuclear device over Hawaii. Many circuits were damaged or destroyed. It was a completely unexpected side effect of a nuclear detonation. All the other tests were on or under the ground or at a low altitude, too low to transmit the effect over much of a distance.

    The only thing to be done is to wrap your circuit inside a Faraday cage.

    A power company may want to consider storing its field vehicles in garages serving as Faraday cages as well. Included might be replacement coils for power plant generators. Or perhaps it might make sense to shield power plants with large Faraday cages.

    Dittos for hospitals, police departments, computer server farms, etc.

    Not only are we vulnerable to the Carrington effect but a rogue nation could launch a missile topped with a device designed with an enhanced EMP effect. You wouldn’t have to get close, just over a major region of the country.

    Imagine the chaos such a simple weapon could cause.

    Partly right but partly wrong.
    A Faraday cage works for electrostatic charges, not for changing magnetic fields. For that you need mu metal and it is not very effective. Besides, a Faraday cage tends to have openings – like a screen or bird cage frame and openings are openings for the EMP. A metal shield is simply going to have the varying magnetic field generate eddy currents and that can create varying magnetic fields inside the enclosure.
    Fortunately, most of the problems will be associated with longer wires and antennas. Disconnect a transformer from the power grid and it will be safe during an event strong enough to fry it if still attached. Equipment not plugged in to the power or other cables will be much more likely to survive than those that are.
    As an example, a very long wire located a thousand feet from a major lightning strike can have peak currents approaching a thousands amps and this is not really the equivalent of an EMP and doesn’t contain the high frequencies a atomic bomb EMP would create.
    Some ultra bad news is that it is possible to create a small EMP bomb without having to have a nuke bomb which could damage equipment over as much as a few city blocks.
    It’s all a matter of energy density as to whether something is damaged. It takes a lot of energy to melt heavy transformer wiring, either wire or insulation. Pick the wrong spot to zap inside a cell phone and the electrical energy generated by walking across a carpet on a dry day is fully capable of ruining it. EMPs are very good at getting energy into just about everywhere.
    Solar events have lots of energy even compared to atomic bombs.
    Note that surge protectors similar to what is available in power strips offers a great deal of help for a lot of equipment but these sorts of things are of limited benefit.
    The best thing that can be done for something like the power grid is to take everything off line while the event is happening. That requires knowing when the CME is coming. An EMP bomb will not have that but it will not have the energy available to damage most of the transformers even if it were capable of damaging or destroying most computers in the lower 48.

    Back during Rita/Katrina emergencys, there was something like an x19 or x28 event. It took out HF radio communications for a couple of hours but did not damage normal (unprotected) radio equipment which was in operation at that time. This was either the largest flare ever measured with modern measurement equipment or it was at least one of the top 3. While Leif’s 1921 event might have been as substantial as the Carrington event, there hasn’t been anything like it since the invention of the transistor. His value of x-45 may be correct but I don’t think those events are merely twice that of the recent one. I thought the X-value scale was a log scale rather than linear.
    Those big transformers are produced only a few a year. Assuming civilization hangs together, it would take years to replace all the damaged ones at anything close to the current production rate. With copper shortages, etc., and a severely damaged electronic infrastructure alternative approaches would probably be necessary. Perhaps locally generated power with a far more limited supply would likely be the result.
    Since I’ve no desire to live in a post civilization wasteland, I hope we do not experience either the EMP bomb or the Carrington sized CME direct hit.

  47. cba says:

    oops above post was quoting jauthororiginal – but that didn’t copy into the text box.

  48. cba says:

    500 yr events seem to be radically underestimated sometimes. 500yr flood plains might tend to flood in more like 50yr time frames.

  49. Bill Jamison says:

    I just want another geomagnetic storm big enough for me to see it from down here in San Diego. I was so shocked and surprised the one time I saw the aurora and still think it was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen. I can’t imaging how our modern society would deal with a Carrington type event!

  50. highflight56433 says:

    The bats and swallows will enjoy the bugs that bloom from the dead bodies crawling with maggots. :)

  51. Hari Seldon says:

    The Daily Mail is a comic. Its dead tree media. It has to sell pulverised trees stained with ink to survive. It will print ANYTHING to do with the weather because it is British. Its entertainment on the scale of the National Enquirer. Don’t waste your time

  52. cba says:
    August 2, 2013 at 10:48 pm
    I thought the X-value scale was a log scale rather than linear.
    It is [in this way]:
    An n*10^-8 W/m2 [1-8A]
    Bn n*10^-7 B1=A10
    Cn n*10^-6 C1=B10
    Mn n*10^-5 M1=C10
    Xn n*10^-4 X1=M10
    Yn n*10^-3 Y1=X10
    Zn n*10^-2 Z1=Y10=X100
    But we don’t use Y and Z [I don't know why not] so:
    X10 is Y1=10^-3
    X100 is Z1=Y10=10^-2
    I think that X85 would be the theoretical maximum.

  53. Randy Hilton says:

    This “near miss” story is most likely a well played bit of marketing PR. Google is currently popping up the TV series as the second or third hit. Well played!

  54. Greg says:

    jimmi_the_dalek says:

    At some point such an event will occur. At some point a major asteroid impact will occur. In the short term the lesson is : Don’t believe anything in the Daily Mail without checking a reliable source.

    ===

    Don’t believe anything in the Daily Mail , period.

    The stream of titillating photos and starlet gossip down the right hand side of the site should be a clue. It’s sensational garbage, not a new source.

    In fact if you don’t even read it , you’ll save yourself the rest of the day “fact” checking and will be able to do something useful instead.

  55. spotted reptile says:

    I imagine air and train travel would be pretty much screwed by an event like this. So what, you say. Well, if your partner travels for work and is on the other side of the world when IT happens, your life ends, slowly, without your loved one by your side. You wouldn’t even be able to communicate with each other.

    No, I don’t think I’d wish this ‘teachable moment’ on to anyone. I’d rather be hit by a truck.

  56. tobias says:

    There was actually a large CME from current sunspot 1806 when it was still on the backside of the Sun. The blast was large but pointed away from us in SE direction and slightly downward . It hit Venus and Mercury. ( Solarham, mid July).

  57. tobias says:

    July 22 old spot 1794, Solarham “old news previous month” archive.

  58. Snake Oil Baron says:

    I can’t remember the source but I seem to recall some experiment discussed recently which showed that most vehicles which were thought to be vulnerable to EMP like events were not and didn’t even stall let alone get fried. Did anyone else hear about that? I expect that the military is working on “hardening” their equipment and if cars and trucks don’t shut down, maybe things will be salvageable even if there is a lot of damage. I don’t mean to say that the threat should not be taken seriously.

  59. Hoser says:

    Pamela Gray says:
    August 2, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    Gosh that sounds wonderful. Thing is, if the EMP damage turns out to be as bad as they say it could be, it is doubtful you would have electricity or working appliances, not for a long time. And maybe no food. If you could grow some, could you store it? Most important of all, what would you do for water? You may live in the country, but city people will have to set out from their homes to scavenge. When the stores are empty, and the animals are gone, people will eat people. Disease will run wild. Are you ready for that?

    Perhaps the military could man existing water treatment plants (maybe only manually operated without SCADA), or possibly set up portable water treatment and defend it. And maybe they could provide some food, but not for 100 or 200 million people. If the grid, vehicles, and electronics go down for good, it would seem a deep infrastructure collapse could not be avoided, and recovery could take a very long time. If we take the full hit, would China or Russia be able to come to our rescue? Would they want to?

    They say we would be brought back to technology before the Civil War. We don’t have the animals we would need to run a small city, much less a state or nation. We don’t have the low tech infrastructure in place. Could it somehow be set up in a few weeks or months?

    Our military should be functional after a large EMP, since they are supposedly prepared for nuclear war. Aircraft carriers might be the main source of stability, providing water, power, order, and hope, although only in pockets on the coast. The Army might be able to help keep some part of the petroleum infrastructure operating, but probably for their use mainly. How many people have mechanical ignitions in their cars?

    How could we maintain agriculture? Or food delivery? Or food storage? Would we live under martial law, moved to farms to work – planting, harvesting, and threshing by hand?

    I don’t know why we have not hardened our systems or at least stockpiled transformers for power stations. I suppose we do have CME/solar storm early warning capability. We may be able to power down the grid in time to protect generators and substations. I hope that’s enough.

  60. vukcevic says:

    Increased intensity (Ap>15) and intensity of geomagnetic events would contribute to ‘global temperature’ rise, and alternatively couple of decades of quiet sun (flares and CMEs low count) may provide an indication of true CO2 factor.
    Recent found correlation between Danish aurora count and GT spectrum
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/DanAur.htm
    was further confirmed by longer period of the Ap index comparisons. Here I took a role of devil’s advocate and assumed that the all GT rise not attributed to the geomagnetic storms (ignoring change in TSI, possible effects of lunisolar tydes, geomagnetic ‘jerks’ such as 1925 and 1970 ) is due to the CO2 rise.
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/Ap_LT.htm
    If that was the case than a CO2 sensitivity factor can be calculated to be 0.7C for doubling of CO2

  61. vukcevic says:

    Correction: Increased intensity (Ap>15) and frequency of geomagnetic events ……

  62. rogerknights says:

    My house has a metal roof, aluminum siding, and metal security doors. How much protection to the stuff inside would that give to these events?

  63. vukcevic says:

    Angry sun may be beautiful and more importantly beneficial to the humanity (see my post above), just remember what Maunder minimum did to Europe’s climate in the late 17th century. We can partially protect our electrical systems (by disconnecting everything for 12-24 hours) but onset of 2-3 decades of cold climate would be disastrous for our energy resources and specially for the agriculture.
    This is a regular on my desktop
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=ddt5Y1hXfgI

  64. DaveF says:

    Hoser Aug 3rd 2013 12:55 am:
    While I share Pamela Gray’s nostalgia, (hi Pamela) the fact is that in the last fifty or sixty years our population has more than doubled, and there is no way we could all survive a compete breakdown of the electricity system even if we hadn’t thrown away the old tools and old skills. As you say, it’s worrying.

  65. vukcevic says:

    rogerknights says:
    August 3, 2013 at 1:22 am
    ….
    For total safety from magnetic induction mu-metal box is required. However no need to get concerned, providing you know some hours in advance and disconnect everything from power and telephone lines..
    Ground level equipment is endangered by electromagnetic induction. Frequency of oscillation within geomagnetic storm is low (fraction to a few Hertz), i.e. wave length is very large (you need quarter wave length or above for serious damage). Power lines, telephone over/under ground lines and railway tracks are ones at serious risk and the equipment physically connected to those.
    Satellites are at danger from the energetic particles direct hit, which may not reach ground in the intensity or volume required to do any serious damage.

  66. Keith says:

    Doing a bit of digging regarding large X-class flares over the past few solar cycles, it seems that the largest flare of SC24 so far, of X6.9, is lower than those seen in cycles 21-23 at this stage of the cycle. However, most of the large flares have occurred after the sunspot maximum. They then seem to cease in the last few years of the cycle.

    If this is any sort of guide, then it would suggest we have a fair few more X-class flares to come in SC24 but maybe no real biggies >X10. If SC25 and subsequent cycle(s) are quiet too, maybe we have a few decades of Carrington-type flares being less likely (and more time to develop protective systems). Then again, the Carrington event occurred during the fairly moderate SC10.

    Leif, do you have anything to suggest if there’s any sound reason behind my general assumptions, or is there too much noise in the data to draw any conclusions?

  67. Kev-in-Uk says:

    I am wondering (again, sorry!) how insurance companies would react to such an event.
    Take modern cars for example, with their ECU’s and electronic gadgets. Parked outside my house during such an event would probably fry it and make it useless!
    I’m now thinking of force majeure and the ‘act of god’ type scenario would be applied…….

  68. vukcevic says:

    Kev-in-Uk says:
    August 3, 2013 at 2:26 am
    …..
    Your car is safe, unless you are charging your battery (batteries) from mains at the time. See my post above, there is too much hype around.

  69. Halfempty says:

    Diving a bit into the kook pool a bit? This sounds worse than peak oil, climate chaos and the commie menace all rolled into one. Meh, a walk on the doom side is okay from time to time I guess.

  70. London247 says:

    I remember on the 70′s a Mig fghter defected from Russia to Japan. It was returned to Russia by ship which just happened to involve dimantling it. IInitally there was a lot of sneering at Soviet technology as they found they were using valaves instead of transistors. Then it was realised that valaves were much more robust against EMP’s. NATO planes would have dropped out of the sky and the Migs would still be flying.
    When you consider all the mircohips in cars, computers, fridges the potemtial to be returned to Medieaval times in a day is quite thought provoking

  71. Les Francis says:

    Been discussed here before

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/02/14/homeland-security-takes-on-the-carrington-event/

    All you need to know – Retired Admiral, Physicist, James A. Marusek has already done all the research.

    http://www.breadandbutterscience.com/SSTA.pdf

  72. Gail Combs says:

    Russ Hatch says:
    August 2, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    If it happens it will be interesting to see how the greenies react. they seem to want us to be in the preindustrial era anyway.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    82% of US citizens are in cities or suburbia and in 1990, 31% lived in central cities. The urbanized west and east coasts are the centers of ‘Green’ the rest is ‘Flyover country’

    I doubt the urbanite greens would last to give us their opinions. Think the 1992 Los Angles Riots happening simultaneously in every city in the world. The elite would barricade themselves in and let the world burn.

    Unlike politicians the inner city ‘socialists’ only stay bought as long as the money keeps coming. With the Obama Admin intentionally stirring the racial hatred pot it makes the situation all that much more explosive.

  73. Patrick says:

    “Gail Combs says:

    August 3, 2013 at 5:33 am

    The elite would barricade themselves in and let the world burn.”

    That process began decades ago. They would burn too, eventually.

  74. Gail Combs says:

    wayne says:
    August 2, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    Hey, that one’s right up there in scientific realism ratings with the “Absolute Zero” movie!
    Loving to scare people who love to be scared….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    FWIW: I worked at a company where our well shielded very expensive X-ray machine was taken out by a lightening strike. The installers were really scratching their heads over how the equipment got fried. They think the electrical spike traveled from the ground up the grounding rods.

    Until we have a ‘Carrington Event’ we will not know exactly how it will effect our equipment but with much of our civilization dependent on that equipment it is worth considering.

  75. Joel Renfrew says:

    DaveF says:
    “….in the last fifty or sixty years our population has more than doubled, and there is no way we could all survive a compete breakdown of the electricity system even if we hadn’t thrown away the old tools and old skills. As you say, it’s worrying.”

    Yet another reason to get the population down to a billion or so. Everything about a lower population is good and everything about a larger population is bad.

  76. Mike Wryley says:

    Rule number 1
    Things will never be as bad as “they” say. Let’s not parrot our CAGW friends with doomsdays scenarios that we kinda want to fantasize over.
    Look on the bright side, maybe our creditors will get hit and misplace that multi-trillion dollar IOU.

  77. vukcevic says:
    August 3, 2013 at 1:15 am
    Increased intensity (Ap>15) and intensity of geomagnetic events would contribute to ‘global temperature’ rise
    Vuk, that is blatant nonsense.and as I already pointed out, your graph is phony.

  78. Doug Huffman says:

    How large is space and time relative to this “Carrington Event”?

    Can there be a CE directed away from Earth, has there been one recorded, are they randomly directed or is there a biased direction? How many have been directly (not by proxy) detected? The product of those probabilities in space and time is the likelihood – that I imagine follows Pareto Distribution. Read N. N. Taleb’s The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable. There the suggestion is that humans estimate unique events poorly using frequentist statistics that result in intractably large and small numbers.

    Page over the discussion is verging on “guns”. Calculate from first principles the probability of a random shot killing a person. It beggars the media reports of accidental.

    Our only vital household service that is dependent on mains power is the deep well pump, and the largest body of freshwater is two miles away. Heat, light, and transportation can be diesel powered. Welsbach mantle lamps are wonderful.

    Someone mentioned inducing significant current in an one millimeter conductor. Please calculate the electric field volts per meter required.

  79. dbstealey says:

    Joel Renfrew says:

    “Yet another reason to get the population down to a billion or so. Everything about a lower population is good and everything about a larger population is bad.”

    You go first.

  80. crikey says:

    I read that astronauts observe the upper layer of atmosphere puffing up like a marshmallow during a’ solar flare up’ ( NASA article)

    Would this expanding air PV=nrT increase the temperature of that layer according to the ideal gas laws .or some change to the layer
    The expanded layer you would think may affect the dynamics of atmospheric layers underneath

    Is this the energy input Pamela G is asking for?

    C02 cools the earth at the upper layers l believe. Maybe the marshmallow effect counters this?

    or ??

  81. Patrick says:

    “Gail Combs says:

    August 3, 2013 at 5:49 am”

    I did some work at a branch of a large bank in Australia. The work eventually took 4 attempts. Reason (Apparently): a power “disruption”. Source: unknown.

  82. Patrick says:

    “dbstealey says:

    August 3, 2013 at 6:57 am

    Joel Renfrew says:”

    Alarmists are never the first eh!

  83. cba says:


    Hoser says:
    August 3, 2013 at 12:55 am


    Real SCADA systems have been designed to survive nearby lightning strikes. As such, they might well survive a CME. Note that programmable controllers with serial ports might have a lot to be desired in either case.
    Ultimately though, the survival of modern society is far more fragile to being damaged than most of the equipment we risk losing to CME.

  84. ralfellis says:

    I’m not sure what the Daily Mail is up to here. The DM has something of an obsession with Carrington Events, publishing nine warnings of imminent catastrophe over the last four years. Why? Is this because the DM likes sensationalist stories, or are they trying to apply pressure on ministers to do something about our electrical supplies?? It could be either.

    The latest Carrington Event story is by Ellie Zolfagretard, who published the story about the North pole turning into a lake. Although most of her stories are not that hysterical.

    North Pole turning into a lake:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2377853/How-North-Pole-turning-lake-Webcam-captures-melting-ice-following-spell-warm-weather.html

    .

    List of Carrington Event stories in the Daily Mail:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1165045/Solar-storm-cause-planetary-disaster-time-warn-scientists.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1171951/Meltdown-A-solar-superstorm-send-dark-ages–just-THREE-years.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1344702/Freak-space-storm-triggered-solar-changes-scupper-London-Olympics.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2109302/Cities-blacked-year–2-TRILLION-damage–1-8-chance-solar-megastorm-2014-experts-explore-worst-happen.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2104482/Terror-bomb-detonated-space-cripple-UK.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2108442/One-chance-solar-megaflare-causing-trillions-dollars-damage-years-scientists-warn.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2191936/Government-adviser-fight-save-Earth-devastating-solar-storms-expected-knock-National-Grid-2013.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2274605/Solar-superstorm-set-strike-Earth–30-MINUTE-warning.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2382527/A-near-miss-Earth-Devastating-electromagnetic-pulses-knocked-power-cars-phones-occured-weeks-ago.html

    Thanks, Daily Mail, we get the picture, we are pretty naked to EMP events….

    .

  85. ralfellis says:

    Any transmission engineers out there?

    Can someone explain why it is so difficult to harden the grid from an EMP event? The power-lines themselves are quite robust, one would have thought. So if you put a Faraday Cage around the grid’s transformers, and put trip-circuit-breakers on either side of them (input and output), surely you could protect the transformers from damage. Would that not solve half the problem?

    .

  86. cba says:


    Joel Renfrew says:

    “Yet another reason to get the population down to a billion or so. Everything about a lower population is good and everything about a larger population is bad.”

    You go first.


    There is nothing wrong with large populations. If the pressure gets too great, we expand and migrate. Once, it was to the new world – the americas. Things got better. The occultic whack jobs and malthusians seem to thing that 1 B is too many and the target should be 500 million. They should have all the credibility of a convicted mass murderer and any actions they attempt along those lines should be met with the full force of the law. At present, nature has made them a laughing stock because nature, not our limited perceptions needs no help in determining whether there are too many people around and nature takes care of things quite readily.
    Land covers 30% of Earth’s surface and we’ve yet to occupy and make use of even that fraction. There are no 24hr full time operation cities. Only a small fraction of businesses like refineries operate 24 hrs per day. There are no cities under the sea or even in most of the land area. Never mind lunar colonies, martian colonies, asteroid mining, or L5 society style megasatellites.
    A quick calculation yields the fact that Texas alone could house the world’s current population in suburban style average density.
    Of course, socialism is unsustainable beyond subsistance level at any population density and probably is incapable of subsistance level – as was proven in some of the early English colonial experiments in the new world.

  87. beng says:

    The Military Channel showed some EM-pulse testing. A modern car was placed under an EM-pulse apparatus to simulate a high-altitude nuke blast. The car stopped, but after a few minutes restarted OK. Several different car models reacted similarly. Of course they couldn’t simulate the effects on long stretches of AC-power grids — the real question.

    Obviously, a car w/o an operating gas station in range won’t work for long.

  88. beng says:

    ***
    vukcevic says:
    August 3, 2013 at 1:15 am
    ***

    Vuk, please stop the magnetic stuff. It’s tiring, repetitive & makes no sense. Magnetics have zero effect on a TSI/water-vapor-powered heat engine that is the earth’s climate, period.

  89. Carla says:

    Someone earlier asked if there was a list of major solar storms that had impacted Earth..
    This covers Carrington event thru Halloween event. Includes the American response to the Easter Storm of 1921..
    “Archive of the most severe solar storms”
    http://www.solarstorms.org/SRefStorms.html
    This is a growing collection of major space weather events in history. This page contains a brief paragraph of the main effects of each solar storm, and a link to an archive of articles written about each storm that you can find in a variety of newspapers and magazines during the time of the storm. These accounts are a rich source of information about how each storm affected various technologies, and captivated the general public. Currently [August 15 , 2005], the archive includes 306 articles.
    …May 13, 1921 – The New York Railroad Storm – The prelude to this particular storm began with a major sunspot sighted on the limb of the sun vast enough to be seen with the naked eye through smoked glass. The spot was 94,000 miles long and 21,000 miles wide and by May 14th was near the center of the sun in prime location to unleash an earth-directed flare. The 3-degree magnetic bearing change among the five worst events recorded ended all communications traffic from the Atlantic Coast to the Mississippi. At 7:04 AM on May 15, the entire signal and switching system of the New York Central Railroad below 125th street was put out of operation, followed by a fire in the control tower at 57th Street and Park Avenue. No one had ever heard of such a thing having happened during the course of an auroral display. The cause of the outage was later ascribed to a ‘ground current’ that had invaded the electrical system. Railroad officials formally assigned blame for a fire destroyed the Central New England Railroad station, to the aurora. Telegraph Operator Hatch said that he was actually driven away from his telegraph instrument by a flame that enveloped his switchboard and ignited the entire building at a loss of $6,000. Over seas, in Sweden a telephone station was ‘burned out’, and the storm interfered with telephone, telegraph and cable traffic over most of Europe. Aurora were visible in the Eastern United States, with additional reports from Pasadena California where the aurora reached zenith. [Newspaper Archive] …

    Dr. S. do most of the most severe solar storms originate in the solar hemisphere that is least active? For instance like now the S. Hemi has not been as active as the N. Hemi for SS 24?

  90. Mike Smith says:

    Anyone else feeling some deja vu with this and Y2K?

  91. Carla says:

    There is one other question for today.
    It is not my intention to start up the forbidden topic.
    Dr. S., just was wondering how the Planetary Theorists justify or correlate, the hemispheric asymmetry of sunspots and the anti correlation with solar differential rotation over the known 60 – 90 year oscillation period?

  92. Jtom says:

    Some of these comments….ugh.

    Ok, you may save some of your electronics by disconnecting them and powering them down, but it’s a moot point if the grid goes down with significant damage. It is virtually certainty generating plants won’t be powered down for their protection.

    The problem with protecting transformers is the shear number of them and the expense, and you still won’t know if it is sufficient protection.

    While optical fiber (fibre for my non-US friends) has replaced a lot of copper telecommunications cables, it has also necessitated the deployment of a large amount of electronics, much of it in the field. While quite a lot is equipped with back- up batteries should commercial power fail, those batteries will only provide service for a few hours. The old central office powered copper plant would have been far more reliable for this type event.

    Whether you car runs or not is not as big a question as to what you are going to do when you need to refuel. Gas stations don’t have battery back-up or hand pumps, and wouldn’t even be open. That brings up another issue: I was in a bakery last week which was open but not selling anything. Their data network (over the internet?) was down, leaving their cash registers inoperable. The business had no procedures in place for selling solely by cash and written receipts (and I fear some employees wouldn’t be able to calculate the total, add tax, and make change). In a widespread disaster the few stores that could remain open would soon sell out of everything. Commerce will simply not be functional after such an event.

    Finally, for those of you who think the world’s population needs to be reduced anyway: whenever I hear complaints about over-population, what the speaker is usually saying is, “I want you to quit breeding so my descendants will have everything they want.” Why else be concerned about the future population? In this particular case, those least affected by this event would be those scratching out an independent existence in a third-world country. Perhaps the meek shall inherit the world afterall.

  93. Chris says:

    Infragard (https://www.infragard.net/), a government and private sector alliance to promote protection of critical information systems, stood up an EMP Special Interest Group (SIG) in 2011 (http://www.homelandsecuritynewswire.com/infragard-launches-emp-sig). The EMP SIG focuses on threats that could cause nationwide long-term critical infrastructure collapse, including EMP and similarly dangerous hazards such as extreme space weather, coordinated physical attack, cyber attack or pandemics. The EMP SIG has produced programs in the last two years with NOAA, FEMA, and various NGOs — Google “infragard emp sig” for information on the group’s activities and efforts, many at the state and local level, working to raise public awareness. The Infragard EMP SIG offers individuals the opportunity to do something about mitigating the effects of EMP (from any source) and other threats, rather than just talking about the threats. Membership information here: https://www.infragard.org/l8uKWS2Olf0s559wXFeJJFQBs%2525252B2bvZv9P8y4vmuSUms%2525253D! . The requirement to provide information for a background screening by the FBI may discourage some people from joining on philosophical grounds.

  94. G P Hanner says:

    I was reading a few days ago about some EMP tests on automotive computers. They continued to function quite nicely.

    EMP has been known at least since the early ’60s. The US military was looking for EMP-hardened electrical equipment for that long. While I am no longer in that game I’m willing to bet that there is more EMP hardening than is generally claimed.

  95. Carla says:

    beng says:

    August 3, 2013 at 8:04 am

    ***
    vukcevic says:
    August 3, 2013 at 1:15 am
    ***

    Vuk, please stop the magnetic stuff. It’s tiring, repetitive & makes no sense. Magnetics have zero effect on a TSI/water-vapor-powered heat engine that is the earth’s climate, period.

    Vuks, beng might not know that these major storms coming in at very very high speeds and push the radiation belts in (breaches in the field) and there is a lot of particle precipitation at high altitudes and received and seen at lower latitudes. Hot stuff and ground currents to.
    So don’t misunderstand..

  96. Kitefreak says:

    beng says:
    August 3, 2013 at 8:04 am

    Vuk, please stop the magnetic stuff. It’s tiring, repetitive & makes no sense. Magnetics have zero effect on a TSI/water-vapor-powered heat engine that is the earth’s climate, period.
    ——————————————-
    While I appreciate that beng is obviously a real expert who can say for absolutely-sure what is what (and what isn’t) “period”, I actually enjoy reading Mr. Vukevic’s comments on this blog. I don’t come here to get closed mind BS.

    Where’s your treasure trove of personal, passionate, dedicated research, beng? Show us.

  97. Joel Renfrew says:

    cba says:
    >
    > “There is nothing wrong with large populations. If the pressure
    > gets too great, we expand and migrate.

    Where to?

    > The occultic whack jobs
    > and malthusians seem to thing that 1 B is too many and the target
    > should be 500 million.

    Sounds good to me.

    > They should have all the credibility of a convicted mass
    > murderer and any actions they attempt along those lines should
    > be met with the full force of the law.

    Why do you think it is against the law to advocate a reduction of
    the world’s population?

    > There are no cities under the
    > sea or even in most of the land area. Never mind lunar colonies,
    > martian colonies, asteroid mining, or L5 society style
    > megasatellites.

    Even if we had the technology to dwell in those places, who in his
    right mind would trade a life on a lovely planet like Earth, with
    its oceans, trees, flowers, mountains, for a nightmarish life in a
    cave on the moon or mars, or on an asteroid, or in an orbiting tin
    can!?

    It is hard to understand how you can think of such things as other
    than nightmare choices.

    > A quick calculation yields the fact that Texas
    > alone could house the world’s current population in suburban style
    > average density.

    Wow, that is certainly something to wish for. Problem solved, right?

    It is like saying 2+2 = 4 to say that a lower population is better
    than a larger one. It might be difficult or impossible to attain
    the lower population, but that is no reason to react to the idea
    as if it is criminal or insane, and then to come out with the
    really insane ideas of migrating to an asteroid or a tin can.

  98. Gary Pearse says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 2, 2013 at 5:47 pm

    Another strong storm hit in May 1921:
    From http://www.tjugofyra7.se/msb/Arkiv/Avdelningar/Nyheter/Svar-solstorm-drabbade-Karlstad-1921/
    2012-04-20
    Telephone and telegraph were the only electronics of the day. Its easy to imagine a major disaster today including stopping all cars, shutting down communications, power, railways, ships, newspapers … well, everything. It seems we are well behind in technology for dealing with this. Would giant lightening rods do? I guess we could have heavy duty circuit breakers with huge gaps – maybe radio operated from the radio waves induced by the event? What have they got now if anything for such an event?

    Seeing the word “nyheter” meaning news in Swedish (and Danish?) brought back a flood of nostalgia. In 1965, working at odd jobs to fund my ~ 4 year’s odyssey away from Canada going, I was shortlisted for a geologist’s job at Kiruna in Sweden, which eventually went to a Swede. In the meantime, I inherited one of two jobs from a colorful Ozzie who had, at long last, earned enough to get his passage back home – that of very early delivery of the three morning newspapers to high-rise apartments in Stockholm. The papers, Svenska Dagbladet (Swedish Daily Blades), Stockholms Tidningen (Stockholm’s Newspaper 1889–1966 and 1981–1984 no longer printed) and Dagens Nyheter (Daily News).

    My Ozzie benefactor, advised that he had customers who complained a lot and that I would get pink complaint slips with my newspaper bundles at each high-rise – ignore these, he said, because you can’t read them anyway. Also, one in particular had a little dog that used to hear him coming and would run to the mail slot in the door and take the paper as soon as it was pushed through. Having had an unpleasant encounter with the customer one early morning he found a diabolical way to get even. When the dog was about to take the paper, he would give the paper a shove and the enraged dog would rip the paper to shreds each morning. I accompanied Ozzie on his last delivery day to learn the route and he explained the delicate timing needed to push the paper into the dog’s mouth, but this time, before we could get down the stairs to the next level, the customer came rushing out yelling and Ozzie pointed to me and said – “Get stuffed – this is my last day – here’s the new guy!” Well, being an animal lover, I didn’t do this, but the dog grabbed it each day and ripped it up anyway and I simply ran quicker than the Ozzie to the exit stairs and received my only complaint each day.

  99. geran says:

    I very much support the defense of Vuk (comments above).

    He admits he does not understand everything, but his amount of research is inspirational. He may be wrong 99 times, and then BINGO!

    I also appreciate that he does not slam down others, even avoiding to slam down his attackers. Vuk is a gentleman and a scholar–a proper example for us all.

  100. beng says:

    ***
    Carla says:
    August 3, 2013 at 9:15 am
    ***

    I was addressing his “solar-cycles/magnetics = climate/temperature-change” replies, which I & many others have passed over hundreds of times.

  101. Phil. says:

    beng says:
    August 3, 2013 at 7:49 am
    The Military Channel showed some EM-pulse testing. A modern car was placed under an EM-pulse apparatus to simulate a high-altitude nuke blast. The car stopped, but after a few minutes restarted OK. Several different car models reacted similarly. Of course they couldn’t simulate the effects on long stretches of AC-power grids — the real question.

    Obviously, a car w/o an operating gas station in range won’t work for long.

    As was seen in NY and NJ after Sandy last year.

  102. Dan in california. says:

    Joel Renfrew says: August 3, 2013 at 9:45 am
    cba says:
    > “There is nothing wrong with large populations. If the pressure
    > gets too great, we expand and migrate.
    Where to?
    > There are no cities under the
    > sea or even in most of the land area. Never mind lunar colonies,
    > martian colonies, asteroid mining, or L5 society style
    > megasatellites.

    Even if we had the technology to dwell in those places, who in his
    right mind would trade a life on a lovely planet like Earth, with
    its oceans, trees, flowers, mountains, for a nightmarish life in a
    cave on the moon or mars, or on an asteroid, or in an orbiting tin
    can!?
    It is hard to understand how you can think of such things as other
    than nightmare choices.
    —————————————————————
    Yes, earth is a nice planet, but the various governments are intent on sliding into socialist utopia (aka hell). Whether they want to escape to freedom, to prepare for an asteroid impact, or because they want to push the new frontier, there are plenty of sane people who would welcome the opportunity to move off world. If living in a cave and conducting all your commerce in tunnels is so terrible, then why do so many people live in big cities and do just that? I know New Yorkers who are PROUD of being able to live without going outdoors.

    Personally, I would jump at the chance to give up all I have to move to a struggling Mars colony. The meek shall inherit the earth while the adventurous shall go to the stars. But that’s just my personal opinion. Or restated: “The Earth is the cradle of mankind. But we can’t live in the cradle forever.” I believe that was A. C. Clarke Finally, for a readable speculation on civilization after a major comet strike, I recommend Lucifer’s Hammer, by Niven and Pournelle.

  103. Dan in california. says:

    I just got corrected. That “cradle of mankind” quote is from Konstantin Tsiolkovsky.

  104. _Jim says:

    The greater threat to satellites? Tin whisker (and other material!) ‘growth’ in the zero G environment …

  105. _Jim says:

    Chris says August 3, 2013 at 9:01 am

    … The Infragard EMP SIG offers individuals the opportunity to do something about mitigating the effects of EMP …

    There are some of us who have rated EMP threats as being over-rated; to understand why would take introducing a number of subjects laymen are not normally exposed-to in the popular press …

    .

  106. _Jim says:

    ralfellis says August 3, 2013 at 7:40 am
    Any transmission engineers out there?

    Can someone explain why it is so difficult to harden the grid from an EMP event?

    The thinking is ‘the effects’ by the war-planners (and scare-mongers, rent-seekers, consultants-in-search-of-gig, et al) is overblown; let’s take a look at a paper written by somebody who has taken a closer look at this issue:

    Effect of the FAST NUCLEAR ELECTROMAGNETIC PULSE on the Electric Power Grid Nationwide: A Different View (pdf)
    by Mario Rabinowitz
    Electric Power Research Institute

    Here is the abstract:

    Abstract
    This paper primarily considers the potential effects of a single high-altitude nuclear burst on the U.S. power grid. A comparison is made between EMP and natural phenomena such as lightning. This paper concludes that EMP is no more harmful to the power grid than its counterparts in nature.

    An upper limit of the electric field of the very fast, high-amplitude EMP is derived from first principles. The resulting values are significantly lower than the commonly presented values. Additional calculations show that the ionization produced by a nuclear burst severely attenuates the EMP.

    Bolding mine.

    .

  107. _Jim says:

    Gail Combs says August 3, 2013 at 5:49 am

    FWIW: I worked at a company where our well shielded very expensive X-ray machine was taken out by a lightening strike. The installers were really scratching their heads over how the equipment got fried.

    For all you know there may have been a primary (say, at 14 KV) to secondary (208/240/120V etc.) arc take place (induced by lightning, a nearby a strike even) out on the ‘pole’ or line somewhere; there is little one can do at that point (think: Plasma discharge ‘arcs’ are basically “short circuits”) …

    .

  108. _Jim says:

    ralfellis says August 3, 2013 at 7:40 am

    So if you put a Faraday Cage

    Bzzzt. What stops a high intensity magnetic field?

    (So-called Faraday Cages are E-field effective only!!!! An oft-repeated misuse/mis-prescription by layman which doesn’t change the real meaning of the term. Is it one of those things that must be used to seem like one is knowledgeable in the area of Electro-Magnetics?)

    .

  109. _Jim says:

    London247 says August 3, 2013 at 4:57 am

    I remember on the 70′s a Mig fghter defected from Russia to Japan. It was returned to Russia by ship which just happened to involve dimantling it. IInitally there was a lot of sneering at Soviet technology as they found they were using valaves instead of transistors. Then it was realised that valaves were much more robust against EMP’s.

    ‘Smoke’ and semaphore are also EMP resistant; The Soviets at the time had copied Korean-war vintage gear we had fielded in that past era and were unable to fabricate solid-state (transistors) as we progressed away from tubes; the small, “pencil” tubes have a whole host of other frailties and don’t lend themselves to high-density integration into modern (for the time) RADAR-targeting, IFF or ‘scrambling’ equipment either. The presence of vacuum tubes was purely a result of having no other viable technology at the time. A ‘comm’ radio is a lot less sophisticated than the other systems aboard a fighter … and unless you had access to the (no doubt) secret analysis report we don’t really know what the highest level of ‘sophistication’ really was nor if any of their technology (or capability though perhaps *crudely* implemented) exceeded ours …

    .

  110. _Jim says:

    Rational Db8 says August 2, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    And if the EMP/Solar flare is large enough to actually affect not just the electric grid, …

    ONLY if you happen to ‘gas’ all the personnel operating the few dozen control centers that actively *supervise* the operation of generating and transmission systems around the country. One of the watched-for events now-a-days ARE solar flares (and other solar events).

    What? You thought these systems operated statically (after everyone left at 5 PM)? News flash: There are personnel on-duty 24 hrs a day actively engaged in assuring a stable power system …

    PS. The key to (the grid) ‘surviving’ is “Islanding”. I leave it to the reader to research ‘the why’ …

  111. vukcevic says:

    beng says:
    August 3, 2013 at 8:04 am
    Magnetics have zero effect on a TSI

    Hi beng
    An interesting observation, but is it correct?
    Wang, Lean, Sheeley In this study, we have used a magnetic flux transport model to explore the long-term relationship between sunspot activity, the total photospheric flux, the open flux, and solar irradiance (my bold,) or as we know it TSI http://sun.stanford.edu/LWS_Dynamo_2009/61797.web.pdf
    i.e. if sun was not magnetically active, it is unlikely that TSI would be very variable.
    The Ap index I used in my graph is directly related to the same solar magnetic activity, therefore I see no harm or prejudice in making a link between Ap index (variability is solar generated) and the climate.
    The Ap index is just another measure of the solar energetic output reaching the Earth, as the TSI is in another form.

    There aren’t many branches of science were any further research or for that mater discussion is superfluous and solar-climate science is far from conclusive.

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 3, 2013 at 6:23 am
    ……..
    Dr. Svalgaard says its phoney, I explained here how it was done , so Dr.S or anyone else can reproduce it. Many may not agree with method implemented, but there is nothing phoney about it if anyone can reproduce it.
    I write what I find in the data usually result of many people’s observations, measurements or otherwise effort, over decades or centuries, left to the later generations to utilise for further research.
    It doesn’t bother me too greatly if someone may not like it, call it phoney, numerology, astrology or any other ‘ology’ you can think of.

    Critical comments are always welcome, especially when supported by facts. Approving comments are appreciated but not sought after.
    Thanks to all who do find time to read or look at what I post.
    Apologies, that was far too long,

  112. _Jim says:

    beng says August 3, 2013 at 7:49 am

    The Military Channel showed some EM-pulse testing. A modern car was placed under an EM-pulse apparatus to simulate a high-altitude nuke blast. The car stopped, but after a few minutes restarted OK.

    Termed a “Temporary upset”; this can be induced by placing a 4 or 5 Watt HT (e.g. a Motorola HandieTalkie) close the wiring which routes to the ECM/ECU (engine control module) while it is ‘keyed’ (put into transmite mode). DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME OR ANYWHERE ELSE! This could result in engine failure and worse (including but not limited to air bag deployment, an angry friend, wife or girlfriend. I take NO responsibility whatsoever even if this test involves a rental or loaner car!)

    A *safe* way of demonstrating this effect without owning a 4 Watt HT is this: Open your PC’s main cover, take a vacuum cleaner with a longish cord and route two or 3 turns of the power cord in and near the MB (esp. near the CPU and memory), now ‘cycle’ the power on the test vacuum cleaner several times by simply plugging it in (with power SW on) and un-plugging it into a powered wall socket … said target PC may or may not exhibit a ‘temporary’ upset when the vacuum is unplugged (note also the brief ‘arc flash’ seen at the wall socket when the vacuum cleaner is unplugged may be coincident with the ‘temporary upset’ event exhibited by the PC under test) …

    .

  113. Mario Lento says:

    The UK Daily Mail would have done better to rename the fake event with an appropriate fake new name such as “Ho Lee Fuk,” or “Bang Ding Ow.” I mean this in the nicest possible way

  114. London247 says:

    Hi Jim

    appreciate your comments especially in regards to the frailties of valave componenets. No I didn’t have access to secret documents. Think I read it in Omni ( lightweight science mgazine of the 1980′s). The article ended that US planes were having their microcircuits hardened starting with the F-14 Eagle.

    Your obervations about semaphore and smoke would be complementary to the use of loclaised EMP on the battlefield. One of the principles of warfare is to disable the enemies ability to fight. If you know that your are destroying electonics you do use more primitive means.

    And yes the USSR was technically behind, but it was also the first to launch a satellite and the first to put a man in orbit even with their industrial deficencies. Their philosopsohy semed to be if it works use it to its full potenetial, if we don’t have it then we copy it ( Concordski the prime example)

  115. Carla says:

    This article speaks for itself. Was doing a search on how far south of the pole, aurora have been seen.

    …the aurora of 4 February 1872 was seen worldwide, and that in the Caribbean, Egypt, Southern Africa, the Indian Ocean, the Indian subcontinent, and China these observations extended as low as 20° magnetic latitude…

    Low-latitude auroras: The great aurora of 4 February 1872
    S.M. Silverman
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1364682608000989

    Abstract

    The aurora of 4 February 1872 was comparable to, and perhaps even greater than, that of 1/2 September 1859. In this paper we show that the aurora of 4 February 1872 was seen worldwide, and that in the Caribbean, Egypt, Southern Africa, the Indian Ocean, the Indian subcontinent, and China these observations extended as low as 20° magnetic latitude. Observations are also available in the north to as far as the vicinity of the north magnetic pole. This aurora is then comparable to, or greater than, in geographical extent, and in equatorward closeness, to that of 2 September 1859. Both must now be included as the only known members in the class of greatest auroras of the past few hundred years. For the 1859 aurora, however, there is no accepted observation at a lower magnetic latitude than about 20°. By contrast, several observations for the aurora of 4 February 1872 are reported at magnetic latitudes of the order of 10°, and one probable observation at an even lower magnetic latitude of about 3°. This paper presents a survey and discussion of these observations.

    Was there one similar in the late 1950′s auroras seen around 20 deg. magnetic latitude?

  116. Chewer says:

    The potential problem lies in the GIC (geo-magnetically induced currents) with large levels that overheat and destroy the electrical distribution transformers and they do not need to be powered at the time of event.
    A large event means 6-20 months awaiting replacement transformers and that would be bad news for large geographical areas.

  117. GeoLurking says:

    Jtom says:
    August 2, 2013 at 7:50 pm

    In a situation like a hurricane, you have most of the country to use as a staging area to bring in equipment and supplies. Imagine the grid going down across the hemispere. Nukes would shut down. Unquestionably there would be damage to the grid by sudden load imbalances. Breakers would trip throughout the network. You need to get men, parts and equipment all over the country, but there’s no power.

    … and when a Nuke Plant shuts down. It’s not just the loss of power from that station that is of primary concern, it’s the support equipment. Things like cooling pumps that keep storage containers circulating. Think Fukishima. It will all be dependent on how the system is designed, but it is a concern. Yeah, Fukishima encountered a Black Swan (Taleb Style), and the reactors themselves suffered little damage, but the auxiliary equipment took it in the shorts and did not come back. How many systems in the US have such vulnerability? (Not just Nuke Plants, medical, chemical and biological containment systems too)

  118. Mario Lento says:

    Yeah, Fukishima encountered a Black Swan (Taleb Style), and the reactors themselves suffered little damage, but the auxiliary equipment took it in the shorts and did not come back. How many systems in the US have such vulnerability?
    +++++++
    US plants have battery back ups that can be manually rolled around to where energy is needed. They can maintain circulation to the cooling enough to prevent boil off.

  119. Jtom says:

    Jim, you seem to have a lot of faith in people moniroring the grid and doing exactly the correct thing when multiple failures hit simultaneouly, but exactly what can they do when there are enough independent failures to bring down the grid? Regardless of how good they are, they can’t reroute circuits when there is nothing left that can handle the load. A more basic question, though, is how vulnerable are their own systems for detecting and analysing grid anamolies?They won”t be able to do much if their own systems suffer failures.

  120. Gary Pearse says:

    What is it about this thread that attracts the ‘MALenTHUSiasts who want to kill off several billion people to end up with 1B max. Who did they have in mind. Perhaps they would submit to a random selection of candidates. There would only be a 5 in 6 chance of dying. As to the areal size of the “problem” : ~90 billion people would fit into Lake Superior, each with a square metre to tread water in and you’d still have the other Great Lakes left over!

    Let me help you Mals solve this. Your dream isn’t going to happen so get over it – you’ve wasted much of your life with this angst. Probably the “problem” is closer to home, arising out of unhappy family dynamics.

  121. cba says:


    Joel Renfrew says:
    August 3, 2013 at 9:45 am
    cba says:
    >
    > “There is nothing wrong with large populations. If the pressure
    > gets too great, we expand and migrate.

    Where to?

    > The occultic whack jobs
    > and malthusians seem to thing that 1 B is too many and the target
    > should be 500 million.

    Sounds good to me.

    > They should have all the credibility of a convicted mass
    > murderer and any actions they attempt along those lines should
    > be met with the full force of the law.

    Why do you think it is against the law to advocate a reduction of
    the world’s population?

    > There are no cities under the
    > sea or even in most of the land area. Never mind lunar colonies,
    > martian colonies, asteroid mining, or L5 society style
    > megasatellites.

    Even if we had the technology to dwell in those places, who in his
    right mind would trade a life on a lovely planet like Earth, with
    its oceans, trees, flowers, mountains, for a nightmarish life in a
    cave on the moon or mars, or on an asteroid, or in an orbiting tin
    can!?

    It is hard to understand how you can think of such things as other
    than nightmare choices.

    > A quick calculation yields the fact that Texas
    > alone could house the world’s current population in suburban style
    > average density.

    Wow, that is certainly something to wish for. Problem solved, right?

    It is like saying 2+2 = 4 to say that a lower population is better
    than a larger one. It might be difficult or impossible to attain
    the lower population, but that is no reason to react to the idea
    as if it is criminal or insane, and then to come out with the
    really insane ideas of migrating to an asteroid or a tin can.


    It’s not against the law to say. It is to act and prepare for genocide. Considering most of these lunes are idiots of the highest order, they should be put somewhere where they cannot harm themselves and others.

    On the very long term, this beautiful planet is doomed along with all life on it. It’s also possible though unlikely that the planet or most life on it are doomed in the short term. Such catastrophes occur infrequently but it’s just as likely to happen tomorrow morning as it is to happen any other morning over the next 100 million years.

    As for preferring to live on Earth, there are places here you would move anywhere else to get away from and who says that living in a tin can has to be horrible and squalid?

    Since you like the idea of a world population of under 500 million what do you think your odds of making the cut and being allowed to live in this new Reich that will last a thousand years? Random chance says you have a 90% chance of being exterminated. What are the odds that these societal engineering idiots will pick you? What are the odds these idiots know enough and understand enough about society to even make intellegent choices? Obama’s mentor and confidant, david (the unrepentent domestic terrorist) ayers once stated that exterminating 20 million americans to convert the country to a communist dystopia would be acceptable in his mind.

    What do you think of the prospect of moving to another continent was like a few hundred years back. Australia was a penal colony. So were some of the settlements in north america. Some were idealistic socialist utopias being experimented with – until the inhabitants were faced with dumping the stupid ideas and doing what worked. Would you choose to be carted off from London to Australia over being hanged or confined to debtor’s prison?

    Besides, we don’t need self important retards to save the world from mankind and bring about some mythical garden of edan or heaven on Earth. Nature deals with problems like genuine overpopulation all the time.

  122. lectorconstans says:

    cba: First, Malthus was proved wrong a long time ago.

    “expand & migrate”: Well, there’s always Siberia and the Australian outback…..

    Texas: area: 268,820 square miles; world population: 7.1 billion; packed density 26411 people/mi^2; = 26411 people/27 878 400 square feet = 0.00095 ppl/ft^2 = 1055 ft^2/person.

    Hong Kong population density: 6620 ppl/km^2 = 6620 ppl/10 763 910 ft^2 = 0.0006 ppl/ft^2 = 1625 ft^2/person

    Hong Kong is what we might consider a really crowded city. Besides that, think of the sewage infrastructure – and the food supply, energy &c.

    The reason so much of the Earth is uninhabited (like Siberia and the Australian outback) is because it’s uninhabitable. Extreme heat, extreme cold, dry desert, tropical rain forest, millions of species of critters, small and large, all trying to kill us.

    “… against the law to advocate a reduction of the world’s population?”

    It depends on the method. WW III would certainly do it, but advocating that might be seen by some tender-hearted folks as immoral.

    Technology saved us from Malthusian doom over the last 100 years or so. There’s no reason to expect that it won’t keep on doing that. The only thing standing in the way is the crowd of Luddites who see AGW as the “planet-killer”, and the only way to prevent that is for everybody to give them all their money, and eventually live in mud huts. Except for the elite, who know so much more than we do and therefore will be entitled to live as they always have.

  123. vukcevic says:
    August 3, 2013 at 12:29 pm
    Dr. Svalgaard says its phoney,
    There are several reasons for this. We shall perhaps take them one at a time. The 1st one: You say that the graph shows a 5-yr running mean. If so, here would be 2.5 years of ‘missing’ data at each end of the Ap curve. But there are 10-yr blanks.

  124. Rational Db8 says:

    For those who’ve mentioned nuclear plants – the primary equipment is all within the containment domes – which are in effect very large faraday cages because they are all rebar reinforced concrete. You’d lose the switchyard, but not primary equipment and pumps. On losing offsite power when the swichyard blew, he plant would immediately trip (scram, shut down), and the emergency diesels would kick in.

    In other words, sorry to disappoint all those doomsayers looking for some sensationalism, but no Fukushima.

  125. Rational Db8 says:

    @ _Jim says: August 3, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    Rational Db8 says August 2, 2013 at 8:08 pm
    And if the EMP/Solar flare is large enough to actually affect not just the electric grid, …

    ONLY if you happen to ‘gas’ all the personnel operating the few dozen control centers that actively *supervise* the operation of generating and transmission systems around the country. One of the watched-for events now-a-days ARE solar flares (and other solar events).

    What? You thought these systems operated statically (after everyone left at 5 PM)? News flash: There are personnel on-duty 24 hrs a day actively engaged in assuring a stable power system

    Don’t be absurd. Who ever made a claim that power systems operated statically? I certainly didn’t. Now explain how power plant and distribution grid personnel are going to prevent the large transformers from blowing if a high altitude nuke is set off? Or if we have a really large Carrington type event – unless they put them in faraday cages before the strike, which to my knowledge isn’t available or planned at this point – but then I could be a little behind the times, so just fill us all in, would you? Because so far every expert I’ve run across who’s studied it, including federal reports to Congress, state unequivocally that it would be a massive problem. Personnel load balancing or even isolating ain’t gonna cut it, not for a flare that size. And certainly not for a high altitude nuke which they can’t predict, can’t disconnect & shut down in advance of, etc. So just fill us all in on how those personnel are possibly supposed to be able to prevent the problem from occurring, would you?

  126. ZootCadillac says:

    Whilst there is little doubt that we should expect another event like the Carrington event in the future, there is also little we can do in the way of mitigation or prediction. Sure it will probably happen when all the required parameters line up as required but we also know that there will be a reversal of the poles at some future point but what are you going to do?
    All we will be able to do with these events is be as prepared as possible and deal with them as they happen.

    The problem with this piece is that it’s typical Daily Mail. ” Woulda, coulda, shoulda” “What if?” “possible doom”. They do this regularly. They are known for sowing fear and dissent amongst their particularly narrow readership. As the saying goes, it’s not worth the paper it’s printed on. It’s a National Enquirer hiding behind a thin veneer of middle-class, middle-England respectability.

  127. Anthony Watts says

    If we aren’t prepared, we’ll be back into the pre-industrial era in a few seconds.

    Is it at all likely that one single event will cause damage over the entire earth?

  128. vukcevic says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 3, 2013 at 11:01 pm
    There are several reasons for this. We shall perhaps take them one at a time. The 1st one: You say that the graph shows a 5-yr running mean. If so, here would be 2.5 years of ‘missing’ data at each end of the Ap curve. But there are 10-yr blanks.

    Hi doc
    Nonsense.
    Even you sometime get things badly wrong

    Ap index data used (as available to me) 1844-2011
    Last date when Ap>15 was in 2005, then 5 year ma (for Ap>15) takes it to 2003, and data is moved back along time line by 3 years, so graph stops in 2000.
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/Ap_LT.htm
    similar at beginning, but here shift is 6 years forward.

    You failed at the first attempt. Couldn’t you find something more substantial to complain?
    Come back with your other reasons, or get your hat down on the desk, on the ready.

  129. Peter Taylor says:

    @Russ Hatch….how would the ‘greenies’ respond? Well, who are they these days?
    Don’t dump them all in one basket, please. Sure, there are hundreds of them who don’t bother to think much – they are ideologues, like any other colour. But there are many, many thinking people, scientifically literate, who care about the environment and how modern industrial society undermines the very ecosystems upon which if not human survival, then certainly its quality of life depend. I would like to see a bit more acknowledgement of the role environmenalists have played in the kind of protection we all enjoy.
    And as one of those ‘greenies’ who responded some time ago when most of you guys were focussed on the AGW stuff….like 2008, when the US National Academy of Sciences wrote a special report on the issue of EMP/Solar storms…..followed by Congressional hearings with the military…..who stated that following a Carrington type event, the US would not be able to feed 90% of the population. Of course, cities would be horror zones – after three days with no water, fuel or light, supermarket shelves empty….does not bear thinking about! Which is why so few people do think about it.
    Following that report – which went unnoticed here in the UK – I started to lobby….and eventually it got to the PM and he ordered our scientists to link up with the US and there has since been a UK parliamentary inquiry…..published February of last year. I gave some evidence to it – more like a series of awkward questions to try and stimulate meaningful emergency planning for the ‘end of the world as we know it’. IBM later gave me a call and I visited their HQ – a very impressive operations room was looking at the consequences for their organisation and they were discussing the best locations for their data back-up centres (not Iceland anymore!).
    Then, as I took a walk on the beach after the chat, there was a prominent sculpture of some English admiral….who died in 1859! Spookey, or what! But if that was a ‘sign’, nothing happened in 2012, so I guess that means we are absolved.
    But a parting thought to all you technofreakish green-bashing limeys – this wonderous civiisation was built by science and engineering and it can’t withstand one big spaceweather event that Leif is quite right to point out, is a lot commoner than supposed! How is that for the wise-use of technology movement????? And it won’t be back to pre-industrial times, my friends, because there were only about 500 million people on the planet then, and 7 billion now!!! Many of them well-armed.
    So – it makes sense to work on peaceful cooperation, stable ecosystems and resource use, as well as EMP protection…..but of course, the modern civil order does not have that kind of sense, as we well know from the AGW debacle! What to do?

  130. Joel Renfrew says:

    Gary Pearse says:
    “What is it about this thread that attracts the ‘MALenTHUSiasts who want to kill off several billion people to end up with 1B max.”

    You ‘crowders’ are certainly a violent-minded bunch. You think, or pretend to think, that anyone advocating a lower population has to have in mind the murder of billions of people.

  131. CodeTech says:

    GeoLurking says:

    How many systems in the US have such vulnerability?

    For the record, NONE.

    There are no nuclear plants running in North America or Europe that could possibly suffer from a similar combination of bad siting (required in Japan due to limited availability of options), ancient design that has not been effectively upgraded, and susceptibility to inevitable natural catastrophe. After knowing what eventually happened at Fukushima the layout was clearly insane. They should have stayed with the original plan of building it higher, as far as I know that was the reason they close that area in the first place.

    Unless, of course, you include former Soviet countries in that list. Now we’ve got problems. Remember, even in 1986 when they were building Chernobyl (the explosion was during trials) the concept of using a graphite moderated reactor for commercial scale power would never have got past the laughing stage anywhere other than the USSR. Who knows the full catalog of potential tragedies in the former Soviet Union? If I was a border country I’d have quick-acting fuses and shut-downs at the ready for everything crossing the border: power, oil and gas lines, etc. and I’d have radiation suits and breathing apparatus stockpiled. Just in case.

  132. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 3:37 am
    Leif Svalgaard says:
    Ap index data used (as available to me) 1844-2011
    Very clever. Ap is available up to yesterday. In March 2012 Ap was 16.1, so redo your graph. Here are the monthly values starting Jan 2012: 7.2 8.8 16.1 10.1 7.1 10.1 13.9 8.0 8.1 10.0 7.1 3.4 4.7 6.1 10.6 5.4 10.3 13.1 9.5.

    You subtract 4 in the beginning and add 4 at the end. There is no justification for that. Similarly there is no justification for shifting the data back and forth. This is what makes the whole thing phony. In addition you should not cut off the top of the temperature curve, nor cut it off in 2000, when there is data up to now. Redo your graph/

  133. Patrick says:

    “Joel Renfrew says:

    August 4, 2013 at 4:26 am

    You think, or pretend to think, that anyone advocating a lower population has to have in mind the murder of billions of people.”

    Interesting. How else are populations of other animals, sometimes called “pests”, “controlled”? Generally involves termination in one form or other.

  134. Patrick says:

    “CodeTech says:

    August 4, 2013 at 4:28 am”

    While the design of the reactor was not the best, it was, at the fundamental level, functionally “OK”, if properly managed. It was “operator error”, more so the “pride” of the person in charge not paying too much attention to his subordinates, which lead to the disaster.

  135. vukcevic says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 4, 2013 at 4:34 am

    Very clever. Ap is available up to yesterday. In March 2012 Ap was 16.1, so redo your graph. Here are the monthly values starting Jan 2012: 7.2 8.8 16.1 10.1 7.1 10.1 13.9 8.0 8.1 10.0 7.1 3.4 4.7 6.1 10.6 5.4 10.3 13.1 9.5.

    You subtract 4 in the beginning and add 4 at the end. There is no justification for that. Similarly there is no justification for shifting the data back and forth. This is what makes the whole thing phony. In addition you should not cut off the top of the temperature curve, nor cut it off in 2000, when there is data up to now. Redo your graph/

    And you think one or two monthly values are going to make any difference to 5 year (60 months average), come on doc pull another one.
    I am happy with my graph, I may extend it when I get 5 years more data, around 2016.

    Now, it may come as a news to you, most of warming is in the N. Hemisphere’s at the high latitudes, the energy is shifted from the equatorial regions pole-ward by ocean currents. These are not constant either in volume and velocity, even M. Mann knows this. There are delays, sometimes more energy is moved by the Gulf sometimes by the Kuroshio current:
    http://www.noc.soton.ac.uk/o4s/gl/c/img/current_transport.png

    Delay between solar in GT in the 1860s was 6 years, dropping to zero in 1880s and then delay reappears around 1960 at 3 years. Greater velocity and transport less delay and vice versa.
    I am not interested in the temperatures beyond 2000, since Ap index data is insufficient and GT temperature is at stand-still since 2000 anyway.
    You disappoint doc.
    1880-1960 period has no delay in GT vs Ap index, it is used as a zero reference, hence -4 and +4, representing input that can’t be attributed to the solar, suggestion of CO2 is as one, but not the exclusive possible. I could have used initial bit as a reference, then uplift would be 0, +4 +8, it is as simple as that.
    I am still waiting for you to expose ‘the phoney’ . Not doing very well at the moment, are you?
    Can’t you come up with anything of substance?

  136. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 5:19 am
    And you think one or two monthly values are going to make any difference to 5 year (60 months average),
    Redo your graph. Don’t subtract 4 and add 4. If that is due to CO2 you should adjust the temperature curve, not APp
    I am happy with my graph, I may extend it when I get 5 years more data, around 2016.
    You have five years more data after 2005, so redo your phoney graph.

  137. Joel Renfrew says:

    Patrick says:
    ““Joel Renfrew says:

    August 4, 2013 at 4:26 am

    You think, or pretend to think, that anyone advocating a lower population has to have in mind the murder of billions of people.”

    Interesting. How else are populations of other animals, sometimes called “pests”, “controlled”? Generally involves termination in one form or other.”

    Amazing. You think people are equivalent to animals – pests, and can not imagine how their numbers can be lowered except by ‘termination’.

    Talking here to crowders has been eye-opening.

  138. Ian Wilson says:

    [Roughly] Around 08:30 U:T (i.e. 6:30 p.m. Australian Eastern Standard Time) on the evening Saturday the 27th of July 2013, my brother and I witnessed a super-bright Venus about 15-20 degrees above the NW Horizon. The site we were observing from has low light pollution and so we are very experienced at observing Venus in the first couple of hours after the start of twilight.

    What we both noticed was that Venus appeared extremely bright, roughly as bright as a set of high-beam head-lights coming towards you on a very dark night. I have observed Venus for many decades and have even managed to cast a shadow of my hand onto a wall using the light of Venus, and I have never seen Venus anywhere near as bright as I saw it on that night.
    It remained unusually bright until it set behind some nearby trees.

    If Venus had only been bright for the hour or so that we observed it, it is possible that it may have not been been widely seen outside Japan, Alaska, N.Z. and the western Pacific region.

    I wonder whether unusual brightness of Venus could have simply reflected a temporary brightening on the far side of the Sun?

  139. vukcevic says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 4, 2013 at 5:25 am
    Redo your graph. Don’t subtract 4 and add 4. If that is due to CO2 you should adjust the temperature curve, not APp
    You have five years more data after 2005, so redo your phoney graph.

    Is that it then?

  140. CodeTech says:

    Patrick, assuming you’re referring to Chernobyl, absolutely. Still, nobody outside of the USSR would consider building the type of reactor they were building there simply because the price of failure was so high.

    Most of the fatalities were people standing watching the pretty colors of the burning graphite. People who, sadly, should have known better.

  141. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 6:17 am
    ” redo your phoney graph”
    Is that it then?

    No, that is the 1st installment. Redo your graph.

  142. CodeTech says:

    Joel Renfrew. I can’t tell if you’re using the term “crowders” to be funny or if it’s actually a term.

    However, nothing needs to be done to lower the population. Population increase is decelerating. In a fairly short time there will be no increase. It is reasonable to assume that either we will learn to function at a new stable population or population will continue to fall, as it would in most first world countries if not for immigration.

    There is very good evidence that a falling population will be devastating to economies and human productivity. I’m glad I won’t be around to see the wars that will follow.

  143. Gary Pearse says:

    Peter Taylor says:
    August 4, 2013 at 4:04 am

    “@Russ Hatch….how would the ‘greenies’ respond? Well, who are they these days?
    Don’t dump them all in one basket, please. Sure, there are hundreds of them who don’t bother to think much – they are ideologues, like any other colour. But there are many, many thinking people, scientifically literate, who care about the environment and how modern industrial society undermines the very ….

    ……as one of those ‘greenies’ who responded some time ago when most of you guys were focussed on the AGW stuff….like 2008, when the US National Academy of Sciences wrote a special report on the issue of EMP/Solar storms…”

    Peter, admirable of you, truly. But you are making the same mistake you admonish AGW bashers for. Would it surprise you to know that thinking, caring folks who are battling (with science and energy/policy alternatives) AGW also are pro environment? If you followed this blog much you would see many of the bashers remarking that the government-AGW research complex spending could resolve real environmental issues like clean water and other health issues in third world countries and, indeed, it requires the kind of cheap energy that is being destroyed by policies and taxation. The harm is being done by “Greenies”. Not all greenies it is fair to point out. But, it’s like the “thinking” CAGW scientists who don’t speak against embarrassingly ridiculous bad science in many papers just because they support the cause. I would like to see a few more good greenies speak up against the huge waste of resources that robs funds from real enviromental issues. If they don’t, it’s fair game to lump them into the monolithic term derogatory Greenies.

  144. Gail Combs says:

    Joel Renfrew says:
    August 4, 2013 at 4:26 am
    ….You ‘crowders’ are certainly a violent-minded bunch. You think, or pretend to think, that anyone advocating a lower population has to have in mind the murder of billions of people.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    No we are just taking what one of the Co-founders of the Fabian Society and the London School of Economics said and looking to see if the real world data that supports it.

    “We should find ourselves committed to killing a great many people whom we now leave living,…
    A part of eugenic politics would finally land us in an extensive use of the lethal chamber. A great many people would have to be put out of existence simply because it wastes other people’s time to look after them.”
    Source: George Bernard Shaw, Lecture to the Eugenics
    Education Society, Reported in The Daily Express, March 4,
    1910.

    “The moment we face it frankly we are driven to the conclusion that the community has a right to put a price on the right to live in it … If people are fit to live, let them live under decent human conditions. If they are not fit to live, kill them in a decent human way. Is it any wonder that some of us are driven to prescribe the lethal chamber as the solution for the hard cases which are at present made the excuse for dragging all the other cases down to their level, and the only solution that will create a sense of full social responsibility in modern populations?”
    Source: George Bernard Shaw, Prefaces (London: Constable
    and Co., 1934), p. 296.

    link

    We then look at the 20th Century data:

    DEMOCIDE – DEATH BY GOVERNMENT
    169,202,000 Murdered: Summary and Conclusions [20th Century Democide]…

    128,168,000 VICTIMS: THE DEKA-MEGAMURDERERS
    61,911,000 Murdered: The Soviet Gulag State
    35,236,000 Murdered: The Communist Chinese Ant Hill
    20,946,000 Murdered: The Nazi Genocide State
    10,214,000 Murdered: The Depraved Nationalist Regime

    …Just to give perspective on this incredible murder by government, if all these bodies were laid head to toe, with the average height being 5′, then they would circle the earth ten times. Also, this democide murdered 6 times more people than died in combat in all the foreign and internal wars of the century….

    After eight-years and almost daily reading and recording of men, women, and children by the tens of millions being tortured or beaten to death, hung, shot, and buried alive, burned or starved to death, stabbed or chopped into pieces, and murdered in all the other ways creative and imaginative human beings can devise, I have never been so happy to conclude a project. I have not found it easy to read time and time again about the horrors innocent people have been forced to suffer. What has kept me at this was the belief, as preliminary research seemed to suggest, that there was a positive solution to all this killing and a clear course of political action and policy to end it. And the results verify this. The problem is Power. The solution is democracy. The course of action is to foster freedom. ~ Dr R.J. Rummel

    So ‘Death by Government’ does happen and caused the death of millions. Many of these deaths were carried out by ‘Socialist’ governments. (The German National Socialist (German: Nationalsozialismus) were not capitalists though other socialists have done a quick back pedal since the end of WWII and relabeled them as such.)

    And then there are the more subtle methods now used in the 21st century.
    STARVATION:
    How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis

    By the end of the twentieth century, twenty to thirty million people around the world were estimated to have lost their land under the impact of trade liberalization and export agriculture.

    25,000 people (adults and children) die a day from hunger and related causes. One child every six seconds dying from hunger and related diseases (or 14,000 children a day)

    The Actions of the UK Fabian Government
    FUEL POVERTY

    Six million suffer fuel poverty in UK:
    Previously the government had claimed that fuel poverty-related deaths stood at 2,700 a year. However, official figures released in November 2012 reveal that during the winter of 2011, 24,000 additional deaths were recorded in England and Wales. The previous winter, 25,700 excess winter deaths in England and Wales were recorded. On the basis of World Health Organisation guidance that 30 percent of winter deaths in Europe can be attributable to people living in cold homes, around 7,200 (65 a day) of those who died in the winter of 2011 likely did so as a result of not living in warm homes.

    EUTHANASIA
    And the ‘National Health Care’ death path.
    Children placed on controversial ‘death pathway’: Sick children are being placed on a controversial end-of-life “pathway” previously only thought to have been used for elderly and terminally-ill adult patients.

    Hospitals bribed to put patients on pathway to death: Cash incentive for NHS trusts that meet targets on Liverpool Care Pathway
    Some hospitals set target of two thirds of all deaths should be on LCP
    At least £30m in extra money handed to hospitals to achieve these goals

    Get your head out of the sand and stop listening to the propaganda of the banker controlled media and start looking at the actual data.

  145. Gail Combs says:

    Gary Pearse says:
    August 4, 2013 at 6:24 am

    Peter Taylor says:
    August 4, 2013 at 4:04 am

    “@Russ Hatch….how would the ‘greenies’ respond? Well, who are they these days?
    Don’t dump them all in one basket, please…

    ….. Not all greenies it is fair to point out. But, it’s like the “thinking” CAGW scientists who don’t speak against embarrassingly ridiculous bad science in many papers just because they support the cause. I would like to see a few more good greenies speak up against the huge waste of resources that robs funds from real enviromental issues. If they don’t, it’s fair game to lump them into the monolithic term derogatory Greenies.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I use ‘Greenies’ for the brain dead followers who join the cause because it is ‘fashionable’ or politically expedient or where the money is.

    I use Conservationist for those of us who truly care about the environment and are horrified by the political hijacking and waste of money.

    The Regulating Class or Ruling Class are very good at hijacking words with a ‘good reputation’ and wrapping it around themselves to give them moral superiority.

    That is what they did with the word ‘Liberal’ (Now called a classic liberal) and ‘Sustainability’ (Which now means Agenda 21) Farmers are ticked about the hijacking of the word Sustainability BTW.

  146. Tom in Florida says:

    vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 5:19 am
    “I am not interested in the temperatures beyond 2000, since Ap index data is insufficient and GT temperature is at stand-still since 2000 anyway.”

    I do not have the knowledge to agree or disagree with you but a statement such as that is a real BS flag raiser.

  147. cba says:

    I saw an interesting quote earlier. It’s on the Stossel tape with gavin, Dr. Spencer, and Matt Ridley. The quote is by Matt Ridley. ..”you either have cheap labor or you have cheap energy”

  148. cba says:

    Sorry, it’s located at 13:04 in the youtube video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLgUv_znMMw .

  149. Patrick says:

    “Joel Renfrew says:

    Amazing. You think people are equivalent to animals – pests, and can not imagine how their numbers can be lowered except by ‘termination’.”

    Humans ARE mammals, animals if you like. I didn’t explicitly state that other than implying UN Agenda 21 path. I guess you cant get your “monkey” brain around the fact that this rock we live on is a virus, bacteria and insect world.

  150. Joel Renfrew says:

    CodeTech says:

    “There is very good evidence that a falling population will be devastating to economies and human productivity. I’m glad I won’t be around to see the wars that will follow.”

    A *falling* population will be devastating!?

    That sounds unlikely: its need for goods and services will decrease as the population decreases. Why would that hurt the economy or productivity?

    If the fall in population is gradual, the change to the economy will be gradual, only it will be a matter of dismantling the unneeded factories and removing the concrete, rather than paving things over as we do now.

    And pollution will be less with a smaller population. People will lead heathier lives, both mentally and physically.

  151. RACookPE1978 says:

    Joel Renfrew says:
    August 4, 2013 at 8:20 am (replying to)

    CodeTech says:

    “There is very good evidence that a falling population will be devastating to economies and human productivity. I’m glad I won’t be around to see the wars that will follow.”

    Renfrew’s reply

    A *falling* population will be devastating!?

    That sounds unlikely: its need for goods and services will decrease as the population decreases. Why would that hurt the economy or productivity?

    If the fall in population is gradual, the change to the economy will be gradual, only it will be a matter of dismantling the unneeded factories and removing the concrete, rather than paving things over as we do now.

    And pollution will be less with a smaller population. People will lead heathier lives, both mentally and physically.

    You blithering idiot! What the Hades degree do you have and when will you ask for a refund of what the taxpayer’s paid for your so-called education? ( I am operating under the assumption that no one who could have written a stupid statement is actually educated, or is knowledgeable enough to have taught themselves anything. Somebody else obviously paid for those pieces of paper hanging on your wall.)

    You NOW have about 20% of the population ALREADY PAST their productive ages of 20-65. Even more are too young to work. Those older people must be killed in your “ideal” economy of “a gradually reducing economy” and dismantling of unneeded concrete and factories, sicne TODAY’S workers are already too few to pay for their own retirement, the retirement and feeding and healthcare of TODAY’S workers and seniors and children. Social security programs and federal healthcare giveraways are going to be running out of money as soon as 2019 to 2021 – because these welfare programs were writtten on the sociast models in the 1930′s of a rare life past age 60 and a worker to retiree ratio of 8 to 1. (And THAT ratio was based on a civilized productive country – no the world’s average dirt-to-death society of squalor and need that you prefer.) Unneeded farms too? or just “unneeded” factories? Unneeded power plants – or do want these seniors and children to die in the dark and cold freezing as they die of thirst and poverty?

    Gradual decline? That “gradual” decline would begin immediately since you cannot pay for the retirees and children people you need to kill – it is going on NOW as you kill the world’s poor with a deliberate policy of denying them their chance for low-cost fossil energy and better food, clothing, shelter, power, water, and sewage as “fight” CO2.

  152. Joel Renfrew says:

    RACookPE1978 says:

    “You blithering idiot! …. Those older people must be killed….or do want these seniors and children to die in the dark and cold freezing as they die of thirst and poverty?…..as you kill the world’s poor with a deliberate policy of denying them their chance for low-cost fossil energy and better food, clothing, shelter, power, water, and sewage as “fight” CO2.”

    It is too bad Sit Ins and Power To The People rallys are no longer
    in vogue; you would be a star at such gatherings.

  153. vukcevic says:

    Tom in Florida says:
    August 4, 2013 at 7:27 am
    I do not have the knowledge to agree or disagree with you but a statement such as that is a real BS flag raiser.

    Thanks for the observation.
    I used data to 160+ years to 2011 (as I have it), another 18 months isn’t going to be a decider. (see one of my posts above)

    There are 3 steps in the graph, it is possible that another step up may be required, but any period shorter than 15-20 years may not be meaningful.
    On two occasions correlation is reversed, most notably around 1930 and 1955, both of these are just under 10 years long, so it wouldn’t be odd if it happens again..
    From the above can be concluded that extending data by 2 years can not demonstrate anything that has not been already seen.
    Dr. Svalgaard as a scientist understands that, but if he wants to use 2 years of data to prove it phoney, he would have done it.
    I do this for fun of it and gave you my honest view, it may be wrong but it is not ‘BS’ as I understand meaning of the phrase.
    For the reason that in the past your comments directed at me, even if critical, were polite, else I would not reply to a BS qualification,.

  154. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 9:09 am
    I used data to 160+ years to 2011 (as I have it), another 18 months isn’t going to be a decider. (see one of my posts above)
    This is where the phoniness comes in. From the time in 2005 when Ap was greater than 15, there is 5.2 years to the end of 1002, so you could have plotted the five year average up to the end of 2011. [it was zero by your definition], so you should have entered a 4 as the last point. As that would destroy your claim you didn’t [in fact you hid the decline].

  155. Pamela Gray says:

    Vuk, I know you are offended when Gore dismisses the graph that suggests temperature rises before CO2 does. And you would hate anyone who shifts that data, essentially saying that there must be some other reason for the “chicken before the egg” appearance, but since it doesn’t matter “here is a graph that has been shifted to prove our catastrophic theme”.

    In what way is your shifted Ap/temperature graph somehow better than that of the AGWers and their “CO2 causes temperature rise” shifted cough-hack-gag graphs?

  156. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 9:09 am
    I used data to 160+ years to 2011 (as I have it), another 18 months isn’t going to be a decider. (see one of my posts above)
    Even without the extra 18 months you still ‘hide the decline’. This is how the Ap graph should look like http://www.leif.org/research/Vuk-Failing-13.png
    If you want to overplot the temperature with your assumed CO2 contribution removed, then you remove it from the temperature curve, not adding it to the Ap curve. So,as I said ‘phony’.

  157. From the time in 2005 when Ap was greater than 15, there is 5.2 years to the end of 2011

  158. Vuk: this is what the honest version of your graph would look like http://www.leif.org/research/Vuk-Failing-14.png
    I orange I have plotted average Ap without removing values below [the arbitrary] 15. It doesn’t make much difference. If you want to remove the CO2 contribution you should do that on the temperature curve. Similarly, if you want to shift data then shift the temperature curve since presumably Ap would precede the temperature variation if there is any relation..

  159. oldfossil says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 2, 2013 at 5:47 pm

    Another strong storm hit in May 1921:
    From http://www.tjugofyra7.se/msb/Arkiv/Avdelningar/Nyheter/Svar-solstorm-drabbade-Karlstad-1921/
    2012-04-20

    Severe solar storm hit Karlstad 1921

    Since telephone exchanges all around the world continued to function and only this one was knocked out, I suggest that a solar storm may not have been the cause.

  160. oldfossil says:
    August 4, 2013 at 10:37 am
    only this one was knocked out, I suggest that a solar storm may not have been the cause.
    The effect of a solar storm is felt most strongly at high latitudes [and can be localized] and at that time there not many telephone exchanges at high latitudes, but there were reports of damage elsewhere.
    ““The disturbance was reported by cable to have burned out a telephone station in Sweden. It may have contributed to a short circuit in the New York Central signal system, followed by a fire in the Fifty-seventh street signal tower [which, quoting a Times story on May 16, left “the residents of many Park Avenue apartment houses … coughing and choking from the suffocating vapors which spread for blocks.”]. Brewster, N.Y., May 16. – A fire which destroyed the Central New England Railroad station, here, Saturday night, was caused by the Aurora Borealis, in the opinion of the
    railroad officials. Telegraph Operator Hatch says he was driven away from his instrument by a flare of flame which enveloped the switchboard and ignited the building. The loss was $6,000.”

  161. RACookPE1978 says:

    To those who were perhaps offended that I inadvertently may have appeared to accidentally have criticized your recommended policies of population control by edict and deliberately restricting population and energy growth and freedom.

    Please pardon my earlier rant against those who favor these type of enviro’s and their ilk.

    it was uncalled for and demeaning.

    Environmentalists and those extremists who call for political positions limiting the earth’s population should be able to force that position, and their religion, on all others.

    But, first, every politician who votes for such policies should lead by example and themselves be castrated. (Or merely sterilized, but preferably castrated. castration will reduce their desire to obtain the sexual benefits of high orifice (er, office) and the pleasures of partying and international conventions and travel.)

    Even more important, before any voter can elect such a politician, every voter requesting a US democratic ballet (or a liberal party ballot in, for example, Europe or Australia) needs to show evidence he or she has already been sterilized.)

    /sarcasm. That gaping hole between a liberal and the real world.

  162. Tom in Florida says:

    vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 9:09 am
    “I do this for fun of it and gave you my honest view, it may be wrong but it is not ‘BS’ as I understand meaning of the phrase.
    For the reason that in the past your comments directed at me, even if critical, were polite, else I would not reply to a BS qualification,.”

    Vuk,
    I was not referring to your work as BS, as I stated I am not knowledgeable enough to do that, however when someone appears to be avoiding a criticism by claiming themselves “not interested” in those criticisms I find that more often than not they are in an uncomfortable place and the excuse of being “not interested” is what I call BS.

  163. vukcevic says:

    Hi Tom
    Thanks for your note. I don’t understand what is going there either, but I look at data and then if anything odd is found I express a view.

    Miss Pamela I shall address Dr. Svalgaard’s objections further down.

    Now I am back indoors from the bright sunshine and the fumbling-fingers i-pad to my trusted keyboard, let me add a short note or two.

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 4, 2013 at 9:39 am
    This is how the Ap graph should look like http://www.leif.org/research/Vuk-Failing-13.png

    Well doc, that graph is a pitiful demonstration of if not you want us to see, then at least of your charting (dis)ability.
    That graph should look like this:
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/ApGLT.htm
    There is a couple of years drop in correlation at the end, but that has happened before, notably in 1935 and 1955. Another 10-20 years of date is required to see what this section might look like.
    I shall leave it to kind Dr. S. to explain how temperature variability in a no way can be related to the geomagnetic signal, and it is all due to that ‘horrible’ CO2.
    If I was a man of suspicious mind, I would assume that Dr.S knew all along what graph would look like, but preferred that I should highlight the global land temperature decadal oscillations to the geomagnetic impact.
    After all Ap index is just another measure of another type of the solar magnetic activity in the similar manner the TSI is.

  164. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 1:40 pm
    That graph should look like this: http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/ApGLT.htm
    You should not apply offsets to Ap, but apply them to the temperature if you believe they temperature rise has been caused by CO2 as you indicated before [interestingly you have now omitted that tidbit from the heading]

    There is a couple of years drop in correlation at the end
    There is no correlation. Whatever you see is made up by suitable shifting of the data back and forth. And in any event you should shift the temperature curve and not the [presumed] causative Ap-curve.

    why temperature variability in a no way can be related to the geomagnetic signal … After all Ap index is just another measure of another type of the solar magnetic activity in the similar manner the TSI is.
    As I have explained many times we expect a solar cycle variation of about 0.1 C due to the changing magnetic field of the sun as manifested in TSI and with no [nonphysical and nonsensical shifts back and forth].

    To sum up: your graph is phoney [even more so than before]. It is sad that you pollute WUWT with your nonsense.

  165. Pamela Gray says:

    Vuk, you seem to disregard any ideas related to the highly variable intrinsic factors related to Earthly parameters. Why? Consider the entire time it takes a suspended molecule to travers the upper and lower overturning oceanic currents from its starting point back to its starting point. It takes decades. Even longer if it gets trapped in a circular pool. And consider the suspended molecule in semi-permanent atmospheric pressure systems and their slow migration from one pattern to another. That migration takes decades from starting point to starting point. These systems are FAR more powerful in terms of energy required to send temperatures from one status quo to another and then back again.

    You disregard intrinsic factors at the obvious peril of your “solar butterfly created” temperature trend speculation. As do the CO2 folks.

  166. Carla says:

    Our understanding of solar dynamo is in rapid change mode. This is Janet G Luhmann’s fantastic presentation at the AGU conference 2012

    Are they seeing a quadrapole on the sun? Sometimes it operates in what appears to be dipolar mode. Then at times LIKE NOW it appears to be operating in its equatorial mode. Stuck between quadrants..

    I did not do this presentation any justice by pulling out the comments below.. but they do make an important point about the current solar polar configuration.

    From the AGU Fall 2012 video presentation
    Parker Lecuture
    Janet G. Luhmann
    Senior Fellow Space Sciences Lab., U Ca. Berkeley
    8:54
    What Dominates the Heliosphere
    ..And so, there is this issue of there seemingly unanchored fields that are convected to the top and yet are so important to what we see in the heliosphere.
    Even though you don’t see polar fields very well in these full disk magnetograms. Ah these never the less control what we think of as our solar field polarity of the solar polarity cycle.
    20:43
    So something we our community still have to get our minds around, is how does this happen?
    Where does this polar field actually ah.. anchor?
    I think is still a very important question that needs to be answered.
    25:00
    pseudo streamers ubiquitous this cycle for reason that we are till trying to figure out.
    ..But you can also see, that there is much more than a solar dipole present..
    ..The sun is not a dipole. We need to take that into account when we look at it.
    ..The open field history over the solar cycle can also be gotten.
    29:40
    ..What you find is, for an implication, for a full half of the cycle, if not more,
    YOU HAVE NO POLAR CORONAL HOLE WIND AT ALL!
    Your getting all your winds at virtually mid and low latitudes.
    ..So the old picture of solar wind that existed back in Parkers time.. I think is, taken a wide turn of a sort………………..

  167. TAPS [Trans Alaska Pipeline System] has documented evidence that significant telluric events can generate currents in excess of 2,000 amps DC on its pipeline. Pipe to soil voltage differentials in excess of 20 volts DC have also noted. (Page 11 of: Coffman Cathodic Protection Report (2007)

    Large conductors are measured in kcmil, thousands of circular mils.
    1 kcmil = 0.5067 mm^2
    A 500 kcmil conductor is 500,000 circular mil
    You can put 500 amps in a 1000 kcmil cable (1 inch diameter), or 500 mm2 cross section of conductor. (It is less than linear, a 500 kcml cable (250 mm2) can take about 350 amps.)

    The Trans Alaskan Pipeline is 48 inches outer diameter with a wall thickness of about 0.5 inches. That is about 75 square inches of steel. Which converts to a conductor equivalent to 96,000 kcmil or about 45,000 mm2. So 2000 amps is probably less than 10% of the pipeline steel’s current capacity.

    http://www.alyeska-pipe.com/TAPS/PipelineFacts
    http://www.ihiconnectors.com/AWG%20wire%20sizes.htm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circular_mil
    http://www.conversion-website.com/area/circular_mil_to_square_inch.html

  168. Carla says:
    August 4, 2013 at 2:31 pm
    Our understanding of solar dynamo is in rapid change mode….
    YOU HAVE NO POLAR CORONAL HOLE WIND AT ALL!
    Your getting all your winds at virtually mid and low latitudes.

    With all due respect to Janet, this is no news at all. That has been traditional wisdom for decades. In our 1978 paper on this http://www.leif.org/research/The%20Strength%20of%20the%20Sun%27s%20Polar%20Fields.pdf we pointed out that “the polar cap flux is almost sufficient to provide the interplanetary magnetic flux. With additional flux entering the solar wind from low latitude magnetic sectors it seems that the interplanetary magnetic flux is easily accounted for at least when the polar fields are strong near sunspot maximum. At time shortly after sunspot maximum [when the polar fields go away] the eqautorial sectors must supply all the necessary flux to maintain the observed constancy of the interplanetary magnetic field”

  169. Rational Db8 says:

    @ Joel Renfrew says:
    August 4, 2013 at 8:56 am

    It is too bad Sit Ins and Power To The People rallys are no longer
    in vogue; you would be a star at such gatherings.

    What is “too bad” is that you don’t even realize how grossly off base you are, and how right RACookPE1978 is, and that he’s simply responding in a bit of shock and outrage than anyone could be so blind to the horrible economic effects of an aging demographic as we are currently seeing begin in much of the developed world. See if perhaps the article below gets you started. From the International Monetary Fund: http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/survey/so/2011/new061011a.htm

    Supporting Aging Populations as Demographics Shift

    Marina Primorac, IMF Survey online, June 10, 2011

    **Massive demographic shift has far-reaching implications for global economy
    **Countries need to rethink how to support growing elderly population
    **Governments are at different levels of preparation to meet retirees’ needs

    Demographic changes are threatening the ability of many countries to provide a decent standard of living for the old without imposing a crushing burden on the young, say Ronald Lee and Andrew Mason in Finance & Development (F&D) magazine.

    According to their article, the world’s population is projected to rise from 7 billion this year to over 9 billion in 2050. But low fertility combined with the fact that people are living longer means that 1.25 billion elderly (ages 60+) and 1 billion working-age adults will be added to the global population by 2050, while the number of people younger than 25 will hold steady at 3 billion.

    The dramatic aging of many countries’ populations has worrying implications for both policymakers and individuals, prompting a reevaluation of how countries will support the growing elderly cohort…. (continued online)

  170. lectorconstans says:

    Rational Db8: What, if anything, are you proposing as a solution?

  171. Rational Db8 says:

    @ Joel Renfrew says: August 4, 2013 at 5:32 am

    You think, or pretend to think, that anyone advocating a lower population has to have in mind the murder of billions of people.”

    Amazing. You think people are equivalent to animals – pests, and can not imagine how their numbers can be lowered except by ‘termination’. Talking here to crowders has been eye-opening.

    The reason people respond to the “reduce population drastically” people this way is because the only way to significantly reduce populations quickly is by murdering large numbers, or forceful mass sterilization – and both options are extremely offensive to us, because we actually value human life, and it seems those advocating relatively quick reduction of population numbers do not seem to value human life any to speak of, and seem to think those options would be acceptable ‘for the [supposed] greater good.’ And they don’t even bother to look into how such changes would effect the economy, standard of living, poverty, starvation, etc., rates.

  172. vukcevic says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 4, 2013 at 1:56 pm
    ………..
    Ok, I take your point; if a dc value is added to Ap, in order to avoid confusion that portion of the graph is now relabelled as F(Ap).
    The object is to probe if there is global temperature related to the Ap index, thus GT values have to be preserved in the original and recognizable form, I might do it the other way too, but holiday is looming close.
    CO2 bit is still on the original graph (see one of the earlier links), but it is followed by question mark. It is unlikely to be CO2 for the simple reason that its change is gradual.
    It is more likely to be related to the geomagnetic jerks, since some of these are represented by a sudden reversal of direction
    http://www.geomag.bgs.ac.uk/images/image018.jpg
    which are close or coincidental to change in F(Ap) function, but are eliminated in the way Ap data is calculated.

  173. Rational Db8 says:

    @ CodeTech says: August 4, 2013 at 6:19 am

    Most of the fatalities were people standing watching the pretty colors of the burning graphite. People who, sadly, should have known better.

    I can’t believe you would say such a thing. Most of the 55 or so who died were firemen who went onto the roof to fight the fire, and others who also took extremely heroic action to try to mitigate the consequences. For example, several who died tried to manually lower the control rods into place, or restore feedwater flow. One helicopter crashed killing a few people, but it wasn’t from the radiation or fires, it was because they clipped a cable with the rotor. No one was “standing watching the pretty colors of the burning graphite.” And many were heroes by pretty much anyone’s definition.

  174. vukcevic says:

    Miss Pamela
    Molecular thermodynamics is ‘the extreme danger no go area’ for me. I only venture in the parts of the forest where I can stumble out, bruised but still able to take another foray.
    No I do not think geomagnetics is necessarily the direct cause as such, more kind of a friendly proxy. Not convinced ? well look at this
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/CET-NV.htm

  175. Carla says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:

    August 4, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    Carla says:
    August 4, 2013 at 2:31 pm
    Our understanding of solar dynamo is in rapid change mode….
    YOU HAVE NO POLAR CORONAL HOLE WIND AT ALL!
    Your getting all your winds at virtually mid and low latitudes.

    With all due respect to Janet, this is no news at all. That has been traditional wisdom for decades. In our 1978 paper on this http://www.leif.org/research/The%20Strength%20of%20the%20Sun%27s%20Polar%20Fields.pdf we pointed out that “the polar cap flux is almost sufficient to provide the interplanetary magnetic flux.

    Not exactly.. you might want to watch her presentation Dr. S. Our current observations are contributing to our understanding of the field being generated at the surface and where these points are originating.

    Parker’s spiral is more horizontal instead of more vertical at times during the cycle. Our current model of how the solar wind carries out the field may have taken ahhhhhh wide turn.. This changes the whole configuration and ‘not just a flattening.’
    And not knowing where the polar field is anchored.
    But the future is built on our past understanding.

  176. Rational Db8 says:

    @ lectorconstans says: August 4, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    Rational Db8: What, if anything, are you proposing as a solution?

    I’m sorry, lectorconstans, but I don’t know what you’re referring to… solution to what? Which post are you referring to?

  177. CodeTech says:

    Rational Db8, I intended no disrespect to the incredibly brave people who risked, and lost, their lives, KNOWING they would probably not survive the firefighting and capping of the reactor. However:

    The explosion in the reactor and the subsequent fire happened in the middle of the night. Some people in the nearby city Pripyat were curious and went to a railway bridge not far from the reactor to have a look. The railway bridge is slightly elevated and the people standing on the bridge could see that a fire was raging the power plant half a kilometre away. But they could not see that the core was wide open sending radiation in all directions. On this bridge, half a kilometre away, the radiation levels were high enough to give lethal doses to those who stayed in the area for too long. A few days later most people standing on the bridge had died from acute radiation syndrome. This bridge is now known as Bridge of Death.

    This was piling tragedy on top of tragedy, and is not something I say for humor. Everyone living in Pripyat should have known that anything going on at the reactor sites would have been reason to turn and flee, not stop and watch.

  178. Carla says:

    Carla says:

    August 4, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    ..Where does this polar field actually ah.. anchor?
    I think is still a very important question that needs to be answered.
    25:00
    pseudo streamers ubiquitous this cycle for reason that we are till trying to figure out.
    ..But you can also see, that there is much more than a solar dipole present..
    ..The sun is not a dipole. We need to take that into account when we look at it…

    Really good job displaying those pseudo streamers (Closed field) and helmut streamers (Open field), using information from several solar observatories. Such detail and the models are good.
    Those pseudo streamers have null points in their surface origin. Those pseudo streamers interact with the outer corona out ? solar radii. Hoping IRIS will shed more light on some of the outer solar atmosphere several solar radii outward to the parabolic exclusion boundary in the inner heliosphere.

  179. Gail Combs says:

    _Jim says:
    August 3, 2013 at 11:48 am

    Gail Combs says August 3, 2013 at 5:49 am

    FWIW: I worked at a company where our well shielded very expensive X-ray machine was taken out by a lightening strike. The installers were really scratching their heads over how the equipment got fried.

    For all you know there may have been a primary (say, at 14 KV) to secondary (208/240/120V etc.) arc take place (induced by lightning, a nearby a strike even) out on the ‘pole’ or line somewhere; there is little one can do at that point (think: Plasma discharge ‘arcs’ are basically “short circuits”) …
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Don’t think so because none of the other equipment in the lab or factory was affected only the X-ray which is why they think it came up through the grounding rods. The machine was in a separate shielded room in the middle of the lab and several other pieces of equipment were on the outside wall and not affected.

  180. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 3:12 pm
    CO2 bit is still on the original graph (see one of the earlier links), but it is followed by question mark.
    No, it was not.

    The object is to probe if there is global temperature related to the Ap index
    The correct way of doing that is to make a ‘Superposed Epoch’ analysis: Line up all 15 cycles on their minima [or maxima], then compute the average dT for each ‘bin’ and the average Ap [and SSN for completeness: You get something like this
    http://www/leif/org/research/Vuk-Failing-15.png
    showing that within the error bar there is no solar cycle or Ap dependence on dT. The expected cycle variation just drown in the noise.

    It is more likely to be related to the geomagnetic jerks
    not at all, those are minute and have no effect on anything, originating deep in the core.

    [Dr S. Please verify that this edited link is now correct. Mod.]

  181. Carla says:
    August 4, 2013 at 5:10 pm
    ..But you can also see, that there is much more than a solar dipole present..
    ..The sun is not a dipole. We need to take that into account when we look at it…

    As you can see from the link below, we never thought it was. Read the first five lines of the link.

    The polar fields are still a mystery that need to be solved, but apart from that the big picture has not changed at all as you can see from this http://www.leif.org/research/A%20View%20of%20Solar%20Magnetic%20Fields,%20the%20Solar%20Corona,%20and%20the%20Solar%20Wind%20in%20Three%20Dimensions.pdf

    We are into the details now and that sometimes overwhelms people so they lose the big picture. This is Janet;s message: remember the big picture.

  182. u.k.(us) says:

    Sorry, couldn’t resist.

  183. Carla says:

    u.k.(us) says:

    August 4, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    Sorry, couldn’t resist.

    To hard to tell if that (Vuk failing 15) was Dr. S., best shot or not.

  184. Carla says:
    August 4, 2013 at 7:00 pm
    To hard to tell if that (Vuk failing 15) was Dr. S., best shot or not.
    Now, now, Carla. Mind the difference between a best shot and a cheap shot…

  185. Rational Db8 says:

    @ CodeTech says: August 4, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Thanks for the reply, and the acknowledgement of some of the incredible heroism that occurred.

    You know, I’ve heard of the “bridge of death” before, but believe it’s an urban myth – there were only about 56 people who died from radiation sickness – primarily plant personnel there during the time of the accident, firemen and other personnel who directly responded to the accident, and some of the “liquidators” who were on site doing clean up (including picking up chunks of graphite with bare hands!!!!! Yikes!!!). Oh, and some members of the media who came onsite to film the incident – one of which took video looking directly into the open core, with nothing on but a respirator (if even that, can’t recall for certain). Anyhow, I’m pretty certain that none of those 56 were Pripyat residents who weren’t actually at the plant itself during the disaster or directly onsite responding to the disaster. I’ve even searched a little for it, and find a lot of sites making the claim, but none from any reputable, knowledgeable, expert source. If you can find anything that way, I’d really appreciate it if you post the link.

    Also, in the USSR, I’d be amazed if town residents had a clue about the radiation risks, effects, fallout concerns, plume travel and exposure risks, etc. They were really kept in the dark. The government and the experts were telling them the town was perfectly safe, there was no radiation risk, etc – for at least three days. They had no reason to think a bridge some distance from the plant would be any risk, unfortunately. But remember, this was the USSR, and their views of what was and wasn’t appropriate to inform people about, and how much they needed to know about risks, etc., was radically different than ours. The USSR’s behavior in this regard was abysmal and horrific. Cripes, they didn’t even give out KI to the local people, which sure could have prevented a number of children from winding up having to be treated for thyroid cancer years later. I think it was 10 days before they even gave some out to some local people – and by then, the thyroid uptake would have been huge and the benefit of KI negligible.

  186. CodeTech says:

    Rational Db8, I was 22 when Chernobyl happened. I know that due to the very nature of the USSR we probably are still being told stuff that is dishonest at best. I took the Bridge of Death story at face value. Now that I’m doing more research I guess it probably was an urban myth. At least, most of that story. It appears there were a lot of people on that bridge, though.

    Either way, Chernobyl was hardly an “accident”, in the sense that it wasn’t mechanical failure or natural catastrophe that triggered it. It was apparently human ego and recklessness that caused it, along with a healthy dose of “stupid”.

    A graphite core reactor was already a dangerous and ill-advised design in 1986. The USSR was always playing a weird game of catch-up and copying, and trying to prove they could do anything that anyone else could do. While I grew up the Soviet Union was a formidable and dangerous superpower, and it’s just as well we didn’t know everything that was going on behind the Iron Curtain or we’d really have lain awake panicking, every night.

    Pripyat, as I understand it, was essentially a town created to service the reactor site. It just seems to me that everyone there should have known the danger they were in. If it was me, the only radiation burns I would have received would have been on my back as I ran as quickly as possible in the opposite direction…

  187. Rational Db8 says:

    @CodeTech says: August 4, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    Either way, Chernobyl was hardly an “accident”, in the sense that it wasn’t mechanical failure or natural catastrophe that triggered it. It was apparently human ego and recklessness that caused it, along with a healthy dose of “stupid”.

    A graphite core reactor was already a dangerous and ill-advised design in 1986.

    You and I are right about the same age. We actually knew for certain that there had been a major nuclear incident somewhere in the world a few days before the USSR finally publicly announced it, because we saw background radiation levels rise very slightly and stay elevated. Truly a miniscule amount, but enough that there had to have been something to cause it. We suspected it had to be in the USSR, because where else could some major accident occur and not be known almost right away?

    Of course you are absolutely right about the cause being gross human error. They violated like 6 major “thou shalt not” safety regulations, all that night. And yes, also totally agree that it was well known at the time to be a risky design. They had reasons for choosing it, but it wasn’t nearly as safe as most other design. And then even worse, those in command refused to believe their staff reports that the reactor was gone – and even refused to believe their own eyes. Some at the top were just in utter denial, unable to cope with the idea that a disaster of massive proportions had occurred on their watch.

    I just can’t blame the residents for not knowing how risky the situation was – they were never trained worth a flip on it, in fact were fed questionable info at best, then were lied to by the “experts” during those first few days who supposedly would warn them if there was any risk. I suspect that if you or I were residents there who never worked at the plant, we wouldn’t have behaved any differently because we wouldn’t have known any better either. It was absolutely unconscionable behavior on the part of the USSR government.

  188. vukcevic says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 4, 2013 at 5:43 pm
    ………….
    vukcevic says:
    CO2 bit is still on the original graph (see one of the earlier links), but it is followed by question mark.
    ……….
    No, it was not.
    ……………..
    There are two links: http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/Ap_LT.htm with CO2
    and : http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/ApGLT.htm with no CO2
    You didn’t look at the original one

  189. george e. smith says:

    We keep getting these “melt the wires” threats from solar storms thrown at us all the time, but nobody ever mentions any physical mechanism that would cause this.

    Now I don’t doubt that controller glitches can trigger circuits changes, that end up connecting things that aren’t supposed to be connected, like connecting together two alternators, that are out of phase with each other at the time of connection.

    The Voltage induced in a wire is L di/dt. Straight wires over ground planes, have about 3 nano-Henrys per cm of inductance or 0.3 microHenrys per meter, that’s 3 mH per km of straight wire. Well you’ll get 3 Henrys for 1,000 km of straight wire.

    So how big is di/dt going to get for an emp pulse due to solar flares.

    And power lines that travel large distances, are twisted, so that the 60 Hz radiation from one section of transmission line, cancels that from another section. Twisted pair circuits, are not only very inefficient radiators of EM radiation, but they are equally poor receiving antennas as well.

    The idea that slowly varying EM fields (how many Volts per meter or Amps per meter has anyone ever measured in any of these fields.), can induce destructive amounts of received electrical energy, is pretty much nonsense.

    Lightning strikes generate very large and fast EM radiation fields. They can damage circuits that are hit; but they don’t induce damaging Voltages in power lines that aren’t hit.

    Has somebody in the know got a graph of the full frequency spectrum of the varying EM fields that come from these events (at the earth end) ??

    We shouldn’t blame solar events, for software gitches that can scramble electric power circuits.

  190. @george e. smith 11:46 pm
    but nobody ever mentions any physical mechanism that would cause this.

    I feel the same way. The physics of the danger is underspecified.

    There is no doubt that during a geomagnetic storm somehow there is an abnormally large voltage potential in the Earth. Typically with a NE-SW gradient in the North American Continent.

    Perhaps I am mistaken, but the real dangers to our infrastructure might be the result of other infrastructure. Take the Trans Alaska Pipeline. 2000 Amps in a geomag storm. But only 20 volts DC to spots on the ground – near the pipeline. The pipeline is a huge conductor with the effect of taking the Earth potential at Prudhoe Bay and equalizing it to the Fairbanks pumping station. The real threat might come from the unexpected unusual voltage potential between the Fairbanks pumping station and the “North Pole Refinery” next door.

    Pipelines and Railways. Big steel conductors that will try to make everything they touch at a common potential. In my mind’s eye, I see a network of “conductors” some at different potentials and where the potentials are most different is where the trouble will be. It would be the poor joints and near joints where the current flows and voltage gradients are greatest that the failures will occur.

    Isn’t the salt water ocean a massive conductor, too?

    Up thread, there is the story of the NY Central Railroad that had ground current problems that brought down the signal and switching system “south of 128st Street”. I found that location odd. Could it be that the ground potential gradient between nearby upstate and the ocean waters lapping on NYC’s shores was the place the gradient was highest?

    No doubt that the high tension power lines are a weak point. They use earth ground 60 times/sec. I’m just expressing the possibility that changes in nearby earth potential from other infrastructure may be a key component to vulnerabilities.

  191. vukcevic says:
    August 4, 2013 at 11:20 pm
    There are two links … You didn’t look at the original one
    None of them has a question mark…

  192. Joel Renfrew says:

    Rational Db8 says:

    “The reason people respond to the “reduce population drastically” people this way is because the only way to significantly reduce populations quickly is by murdering large numbers, or forceful mass sterilization – and both options are extremely offensive to us, because we actually value human life, and it seems those advocating relatively quick reduction of population numbers do not seem to value human life any to speak of, and seem to think those options would be acceptable ‘for the [supposed] greater good.’ And they don’t even bother to look into how such changes would effect the economy, standard of living, poverty, starvation, etc., rates.”

    I don’t advocate murdering people, but forced sterilization is a good idea and probably the only way to keep people from being murdered.

    Any quick change to the size of the population will, obviously, cause some dislocation in the economy, but that will be relatively painless and soon pass; and the additional urban space and housing that becomes available will, again obviously, be good for those who remain.

    The idea that the reduction will somehow make people starve is absurd; the amount of food produced in Europe and the European Diaspora is far more than is needed to feed us. Even if our population were one-tenth of what it is, we could easily produce enough food to keep us well-fed.

    A higher ratio of old people to younger ones will be offset by the fact the a large part of the ‘old’ people are healthier than their peers of 100 years ago and can continue working, and will want to. In any case, younger people, unless they are psychopaths, take in their elderly parents and grandparents, do they not?

  193. jimmi_the_dalek says:

    Joel says : “forced sterilization is a good idea”

    Do you have any children? If so will you volunteer them to be sterilised?

  194. vukcevic says:

    Energetic geomagnetic pulse last night with KP=5, with polar Bz > 1% swing
    http://flux.phys.uit.no/cgi-bin/plotgeodata.cgi?Last24&site=tro2a&
    Two CMEs on the 3rd & 4th August
    http://sohowww.nascom.nasa.gov/data/LATEST/current_c2.gif

  195. Patrick says:

    “Joel Renfrew says:

    August 5, 2013 at 4:25 am”

    Your post is a joke, right? If it’s not a joke it certainly is uninformed to the point of ridiculousness.

  196. Joel Renfrew says:

    Patrick says:

    “Your post is a joke, right? If it’s not a joke it certainly is uninformed to the point of ridiculousness.”

    Please point out how it is uninformed. Be specific.

  197. Patrick says:

    “Joel Renfrew says:

    August 5, 2013 at 5:30 am”

    How about the whole post, is that specific enough?

  198. Gail Combs says:

    Joel Renfrew says: @ August 5, 2013 at 4:25 am

    I don’t advocate murdering people, but forced sterilization is a good idea and probably the only way to keep people from being murdered.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    “The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge to rule it.” ~ H.L. Mencken

    As I said elsewhere the Eugenics Movement is still alive and well, it has just been rebranded. Of course it is “always for our own good.”

    The eugenics movement Britain wants to forget

    Eugenics: the skeleton that rattles loudest in the left’s closet: Socialism’s one-time interest in eugenics is dismissed as an accident of history. But the truth is far more unpalatable

    Margaret Sanger, Founder of Planned Parenthood – In Her Own Words
    Examples:

    On blacks, immigrants and indigents:
    “…human weeds,’ ‘reckless breeders,’ ‘spawning… human beings who never should have been born.” Margaret Sanger, Pivot of Civilization, referring to immigrants and poor people

    On the purpose of birth control:
    The purpose in promoting birth control was “to create a race of thoroughbreds,” she wrote in the Birth Control Review, Nov. 1921 (p. 2)

    We are to be bred like cattle to have the ‘Desired Characteristics’ and the evidence is out there if you bother to look.

    29 November 2012 ‘Death pathway’ is used for sick children
    The controversial Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP) – where a patient’s death is hastened by not giving them fluids or food – is being used on young people and new babies that are severely-disabled, a doctor has claimed.

    The LCP is traditionally applied to elderly people or adults with terminal illnesses and has proved controversial in that doctors were said to be making the decision to hasten the end of people’s lives without consulting relatives or the patients themselves where possible. It is estimated that LCP is used around 130,000 times a year….

    Hospitals ‘paid millions to put patients on death pathway’ “Hospitals are being paid millions of pounds to reach targets for the number of patients put on a controversial pathway for the withdrawal of life-saving treatment, according to data based on Freedom of Information requests.”

    UK: DNA from millions of newborn babies is secretly stored on NHS database… without proper parental consent.

    USA: The government has your baby’s DNA
    … mandated by the government, it’s often done without the parents’ consent, according to Brad Therrell, director of the National Newborn Screening & Genetics Resource Center. In many states, such as Florida, where Isabel was born, babies’ DNA is stored indefinitely, according to the resource center….”

    UK takes step toward ‘three-parent babies’

    2006-07-19 Insurers Study Implanting RFID Chips in Patients:
    Hackensack University Medical Center and Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey are recruiting volunteers to have an RFID device implanted under the skin.

    The chips, made by VeriChip Corporation, will contain a 16-digit identifying number that can be used to bring up medical and family contact information stored electronically in a database. The chips will be tested in patients with chronic conditions who are more likely to need care in hospital emergency rooms. In the two-year trial, the insurance company will pay about
    $200 for the chips to be implanted, plus $80 a month for a subscription fee, according to reports in the RFID Journal. Horizon will then assess whether the devices lower health care costs by reducing duplicate lab tests, drug interactions or misdiagnoses. Horizon will invite patients with conditions like diabetes and heart disease to participate and hopes to enroll about 300 volunteers. Though non-implanted devices, like bracelets or dog tags, could also provide the identifying numbers, chip proponents said that the implanted tags are less likely to be removed or damaged and that scanning for implants will take less time than looking for other means of identification….

    8/05/13 RFID Chip Now Being Issued In Hanna, Wyoming As Part Of New “Obamacare” Plan: The “Obamacare” RFID chips are currently being given a test run…

  199. CodeTech says:

    Joel:

    Forced sterilization is not a good idea. Research China, and their one-child laws. See how well that worked out. Now extrapolate that to zero. Personally, I don’t WANT to see rioting in the streets.

    Any quick change to the size of the population will, obviously, cause some dislocation in the economy, but that will be relatively painless and soon pass; and the additional urban space and housing that becomes available will, again obviously, be good for those who remain.

    So what, people voluntarily off themselves and the remainder fight over their housing? Is this how you see it going down? Honestly, you really have no idea how humans work, so I have to assume you’re very young. Relatively painless, hey? Who is doing the work? Presumably the remainder are remaining because they’re wealthy, so who cleans their houses, builds and repairs their cars, houses, office buildings? They’re not going to do it themselves, they’re wealthy and unused to manual labor.

    The idea that the reduction will somehow make people starve is absurd; the amount of food produced in Europe and the European Diaspora is far more than is needed to feed us. Even if our population were one-tenth of what it is, we could easily produce enough food to keep us well-fed.

    So, during this massive upheaval of humanity that’s going on, and the complete collapse of the economy that you say won’t happen but everyone else knows will, who is growing food? Who is distributing it? Who has time to eat when they’re out rioting in the streets and fighting over the good real estate left vacant by the dearly departed?

    A higher ratio of old people to younger ones will be offset by the fact the a large part of the ‘old’ people are healthier than their peers of 100 years ago and can continue working, and will want to. In any case, younger people, unless they are psychopaths, take in their elderly parents and grandparents, do they not?

    So I presume that those “old people” (from your perspective that’s what, anyone over 30?) who fail to maintain their healthy status are euthanized, right? I remember this movie, it was called Logan’s Run.

    And why on earth are all these young people taking in their elderly relatives? Aren’t there plenty of vacated urban spaces and houses lying around for the taking?

    I agree with Patrick.

  200. Joel Renfrew says:

    CodeTech says:

    >
    > So what, people voluntarily off themselves and the remainder fight
    > over their housing? Is this how you see it going down?

    You seem to be substituting your own fantasies for what I wrote. I
    did not suggest that people voluntarily kill themselves; I said
    that forced sterilization, which would result in a lower
    population, would also result in more housing being available.

    Nobody would be fighting over it – they would buy it.

    > Honestly,
    > you really have no idea how humans work, so I have to assume
    > you’re very young. Relatively painless, hey? Who is doing the
    > work? Presumably the remainder are remaining because they’re
    > wealthy,

    Why would they be wealthy? The forced sterilization would be done
    randomly.

    > so who cleans their houses, builds and repairs their
    > cars, houses, office buildings? They’re not going to do it
    > themselves, they’re wealthy and unused to manual labor.

    You really think that disaster is just around the corner and that
    any change means society grinds to a halt. Astonishing.

    >
    > The idea that the reduction will somehow make people starve is
    > absurd; the amount of food produced in Europe and the European
    > Diaspora is far more than is needed to feed us. Even if our
    > population were one-tenth of what it is, we could easily produce
    > enough food to keep us well-fed.
    >
    > So, during this massive upheaval of humanity that’s going on,

    says who?

    > and
    > the complete collapse of the economy that you say won’t happen but
    > everyone else knows will,

    Who is this ‘everybody else’?

    > who is growing food? Who is distributing
    > it? Who has time to eat when they’re out rioting in the streets
    > and fighting over the good real estate left vacant by the dearly
    > departed?

    What a diseased imagination you have. Truly fantastic.

    >
    > A higher ratio of old people to younger ones will be offset by
    > the fact the a large part of the ‘old’ people are healthier than
    > their peers of 100 years ago and can continue working, and will
    > want to. In any case, younger people, unless they are psychopaths,
    > take in their elderly parents and grandparents, do they not?
    >
    > So I presume that those “old people” (from your perspective that’s
    > what, anyone over 30?) who fail to maintain their healthy status
    > are euthanized, right? I remember this movie, it was called
    > Logan’s Run.

    Another example of you spouting your fantasies while thinking you
    are replying to something I said.

    >
    > And why on earth are all these young people taking in their
    > elderly relatives? Aren’t there plenty of vacated urban spaces and
    > houses lying around for the taking?
    >
    > I agree with Patrick.

    I don’t think you know what you agree with or what you are talking
    about. If you are not just taking the piss, you really should stick
    to coding; and whatever you do, never try to get into politics.

  201. Pamela Gray says:

    Joel, before any society accepts forced random sterilization, a BUNCH of other rights need to be taken away. Which, based on history, would lead to civil and revolutionary wars with much suffering world wide. Your premise is not thought out well and jumps through hoops that just would not be available in real world settings.

  202. RACookPE1978 says:

    Joel:

    If you – yourself – are not already sterilized, you need to be quiet on the subject of forcing others to kill their children, grandchildren, and great-children.

    Then again, according to Darwin, forced sterilization of liberals and democrats and the poor would “improve the species” …. Right?

  203. u.k.(us) says:

    Carla says:

    August 4, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    u.k.(us) says:

    August 4, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    Sorry, couldn’t resist.

    To hard to tell if that (Vuk failing 15) was Dr. S., best shot or not.
    ——————
    ==========
    At risk of being dense, I would just like to clarify that my “comment” was directed at the sun :)

  204. u.k.(us) says:
    August 5, 2013 at 9:46 am
    At risk of being dense, I would just like to clarify that my “comment” was directed at the sun :)
    Does the Sun care?

  205. u.k.(us) says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:

    August 5, 2013 at 9:48 am

    u.k.(us) says:
    August 5, 2013 at 9:46 am
    At risk of being dense, I would just like to clarify that my “comment” was directed at the sun :)
    Does the Sun care?
    ==============
    What did you just say, I missed the meaning.

  206. u.k.(us) says:
    August 5, 2013 at 9:54 am
    At risk of being dense, I would just like to clarify that my “comment” was directed at the sun :)
    “Does the Sun care?”
    What did you just say, I missed the meaning.

    People care, sun does not, but perhaps I’m just being dense :-)

  207. Gail Combs says:

    CodeTech says: @ August 5, 2013 at 6:31 am

    Joel says:

    …A higher ratio of old people to younger ones will be offset by the fact the a large part of the ‘old’ people are healthier than their peers of 100 years ago and can continue working…

    You can tell Joel is young. If you are over 45 good luck finding a decent job. The old are now slated to become the ‘chiggers’ of the 21st century forced to take low pay part time jobs to supplement their retirement which is rapidly depreciating thanks to the FEDs inflation policy. The jobs they used to have are now taken by immigrants at lower wages. Many older folks are even forced to train their replacements.

    In the Forbes article Economically, Could Obama Be America’s Best President?

    I brought up John Williams of Shadowstat’s 22% unemployment rate. The author did not address what I said but when another person brought up the broken government unemployment statisitics another Forbes Contributor answered.

    Michael Earnest:

    For me, our economy is based on jobs, not the DOW, not the NASDAQ. I’m amazed that each time we lose thousands of jobs, the unemployment rate goes down. The explanation is that several thousand of the unemployed stopped looking for work, so they are removed from the statistics. Theses removed unemployed are still unemployed. We need to start being honest with ourselves. The current posted rate is 7.5%. If you add all those people who are actually unemployed back into the number, its around 17.5%. Obama gets a C- for his economy based on these numbers alone.

    there was a reply from anoter Forbes contributor:

    Bob D:

    Michael with all due respect, I work with a lot of these people who have, supposedly quit looking for work. Most of them are older and have worked for 30 years or more and are in their 50′s or 60′s and they cannot find what they want which is a high paying job that pays them what they used to earn. Those jobs since the crash of 2007 and 2008 are gone. CEO’s are saving and hoarding cash by not bringing these types of people back to the work force. So, many of these people are now forced to retire early. That is what is happening to a lot of these folks and we have at least three dozen who fall into this category so it is not uncommon at all. They fall into this category of having given up looking when what they are doing is being forced to retire early…

    It is sad but the IT manager or VP who was making $250K in 2006 is not going to find a job like that ever again. So he or she is forced to take a lesser paying job or they retire early or they dip into their IRA or their 401k a bit early before they tap into Social Security. That is a what is happening. Blame it on the CEO’s who are hoarding cash and who only want to focus on one thing, the bottom line.

    So because the baby boomers are being forced out of the market and can not find decent jobs “WE DON”T COUNT” Ain’t government logic great?

    Notice how it is being “Blamed on Capitalism” yet John Williams explained how the Clinton Admin. changed how the statistics were calculated to hide the massive unemployment that would hit the USA from his ‘Free Trade’ Agreements (NAFTA and WTO) and from his policies of shipping US technology to China, Chasing the Dragon

    Yup Yup it is all the fault of those nasty capitalists and if the Democrats are in bed with them… ERRRrrr move along nothing to see here.
    ….

    Government also downplays inflation GRAPH The real problem is the USA is exporting our inflation and we got away with it because the US dollar is the World Reserve Currency. Now other countries are getting P.O.

    Wall Street Journal: The Latest American Export: Inflation

    June 14, 2013 Investors Avoid Bonds in the East and West: In a Reversal, Foreigners Sell Off U.S. Treasurys (That is US government Debt)

    BRICS Nations Plan New Bank to Bypass World Bank, IMF

    What will China’s decision to bypass the American dollar when trading oil mean?

    Australia Enters Direct Currency Trading Agreement With China

    The Real Numbers: Half of America in Poverty — and It’s Creeping Upward: The Census Bureau has reported that one out of six Americans lives in poverty. A shocking figure. But it’s actually much, much worse.

    Why this matters:
    In a 2011 article On Hyperinflation, Edward Harrison explains why the US is not looking at hyperinflation.

    …Thus, the loss of the ability to tax is central in hyperinflation.

    In the German example, the Germans had a huge foreign currency liability that it had to pay, meaning it could not make good on the liability by printing money. It was a currency user as far as these liabilities went. Meanwhile, with productive capacity limited, the government was then unable to ease price pressure through the tax lever. The shortage of goods drove up prices inexorably and the government was forced to turn to the printing press in order to meet its domestic obligations.

    In the Zimbabwe example, taxes were again central. Unable to recoup enough tax revenue and with large foreign currency obligations and a loss of productive capacity, the government resorted to printing money in an environment where prices were rising.

    So, hyperinflation has very specific preconditions that are not apparent in the U.S..
    1. No foreign currency liability: The U.S. dollar is the world’s reserve currency so the U.S. can pay for trade goods in U.S. dollars. The U.S. does not have a peg to gold or some other currency which acts as a de facto foreign currency liability. And the U.S. government has substantially no foreign currency liabilities. All of the debt is issued in domestic currency.

    2. Price pressures are still anchored: While commodity prices are rising, they are rising in all currencies, not just in USD. Moreover, their rise will create demand destruction before any hyperinflation could occur. Why? Unemployment is high and capacity utilization is low, meaning there are no inflationary pressures on that front to help push inflation higher before demand destruction sets in.

    3. Currency revulsion has not set in: Tax compliance is high in the U.S. We are not talking about Russia, Greece or Argentina where government has had a difficult time in raising tax. Moreover, as the USD is still the world’s reserve currency, there has been no freefall sell off of dollars, nor do I anticipate any in the near-to-medium term.

    In short, there will be no hyperinflation in the U.S. any time soon.

    There have been rumblings from Russia and China about the US Dollar as World Reserve Currency. China Maneuvers To Take Away U.S.’ Dominant Reserve Currency Status and our trade deficit is high link

    Currency revulsion is setting among other countries as I showed above.

    Tax compliance was high in the U.S. by the The $2 trillion shadow economy is the recession’s big winner

    …A 2011 paper [by] Richard Cebula and Edgar Feige estimated that as much as “18-19 percent of total reportable income is not properly reported to the IRS.” That’s as much as $2 trillion in underground economic activity, with about $500 billion in taxes that aren’t being paid to the government.

    And here’s another suggestive piece of evidence that the shadow economy has been growing during the downturn. The amount of U.S. currency in circulation has been soaring in the last six years, from $803 billion in 2007 to $1.18 trillion in March…..

    An accountant just told me the US government is now making Accountants libel if their customers do not pay the correct tax….
    ………………………………

    Why does all this gabbering on economic matter?

    Because governments KNOW if the regulations are taxes become onus citizens retaliate by developing an underground economy. A Carbon Tax taxes that economy no matter what because economic activity depends on ENERGY.

    [Check this phrasing please: " Because governments KNOW if the regulations are taxes become onus citizens retaliate by developing an underground economy. " Mod]

  208. Rational Db8 says:

    @Joel Renfrew

    I’m gobsmacked, and nearly speechless. You think forced sterilization would be a good thing, and then you tell someone who clearly knows far more about the subject at hand then you that he/she shouldn’t go into politics?? It’s people like YOU going into politics that’s horrifying. There are reams of studies related to aging populations and the effect on economies – you clearly haven’t read any of them to speak of. You are living in a la-la land where you can make these massive changes and all will just be wonderful. It’s utter bunk and fantasy.

    Just one example, how are all the elderly people who need care going to manage to move in with their kids, when you force sterilized them and they don’t HAVE any kids? Right now most of the first world nations already have less than replacement rate birth rates – and a heck of a lot of people don’t have kids. In the USA, for example, about 1 in 5 women who get a college degree never have kids, and 1 in 4 with advanced degrees.

    And as others have said, who is going to do all the work, including continuing to produce all the food needed? There are already farm labor shortages, especially for things like working orchards.

    And just how are you possibly going to implement forced sterilization without having mass rioting, civil wars, mass migrations? People will be fleeing countries who have implemented or are about to implement such a program for ones that haven’t yet – and I bet you’d get a massively increased birth rate too as people try to have babies NOW rather than waiting, for fear that they won’t be able to have them later. The economic and social upheaval would be horrendous.

    As someone else already said: Unless you are already sterilized – by choice and not by accidental infertility – and I’ll go father and add your entire family too, then you have no business talking about this.

    You desperately need to educate yourself better on this subject. Oh, and you asked who “everybody else” was that knew these would be massive problems… try almost everyone who’s at all educated, including economists.

  209. ZZMike says:

    That’s an excellent post. I first thought there was a typo in the Forbes title: they put “best” when they clearly meant “worst”. It’s almost understandable, given that Forbes is a financial magazine. If you’re a stockholder with a reasonably big portfolio, you’ve done fairly well.

    But in every other aspect of life – every other – we are considerably worse off now than we were 8 years ago. Almost every trip through an airport is a humiliating, degrading ordeal. (And now we learn that “Complaints against U.S. airport security workers up 26 percent in three years” (Reuters headline)). Businesses have cut back their workers’ hours to escape the burden of Obama’s health insurance regulations (I say “insurance” because there’s no actual health care involved). (This includes franchises like McDonalds.)

    Because Washington likes to feel itself “more equal” than the rest of us, they’ve exempted themselves – and their staff – from the burden of Obama’s insurance law.

    Across the country, cities are going bankrupt (partly due to years of local mismanagement).

    Everyone suffers – either directly or indirectly – under hundreds of onerous regulations – Federal and local. Our foreign policy is in a shambles – an ambassador killed in Benghazi, along with some of his bodyguards; the administration has tried to cover that up ever since it happened. And now it seems likely that the CIA was doing a bit of gun-running in Benghazi. All the survivors, and most everyone involved, has been sworn to secrecy – even forbidden to talk to Congress, and given monthly lie-detector tests to insure compliance.

    Those – and the points made in Gail’s post, are just the tip of the iceberg.

    America is the Titanic.

    Government is the iceberg.

  210. Rational Db8 says:

    But then, hey, we don’t have to worry about Joel’s forced sterilization – one big Carrington type event and it might just cause the great population decrease he wants in one fell swoop. Of course, we’ll all be living in the stone age again for awhile, those who survive.

  211. Jim Arndt says:

    Hi Leif,
    Correct me please but wouldn’t we get some warning of a Carrington like event. We should see a large amount of plaque or sun spots in the area of which the event will take place. This should give us at least hours if not days to prepare, at least personally. Flares and CME just don’t happen without warning they have to come from a magnetically complex plaque or spot group.

  212. Jim Arndt says:
    August 5, 2013 at 11:50 am
    Correct me please but wouldn’t we get some warning of a Carrington like event.
    As you correctly point out, we would have days of warning. The problem is that most large and complicated spot groups do not result in a Carrington event, so we have way too many false positives. We are not [yet] in the position of being able to predict if a large group will actually produce a very large event. If one results, we have about 15+ hours of warning from solar observations and 15+ minutes from spacecraft. This is for the magnetic effect. The radiation and solar energetic particles [SEP] arrive so fast that we have almost no warning. The radiation arrives at the speed of light so we have no warning there, and the SEPs can move at up to more than 80% of the speed of light which could give us about 100 seconds of warning [the Sun being only 500 light-seconds distant], which does not help much.

  213. Pamela Gray says:

    I’ld be the first one to raise my cell phone up in hopes it would get fried.

  214. ZZMike says:

    If there’s a microwave oven handy, you could do a test run.

  215. Gail Combs says:

    Pamela Gray says:
    August 5, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    I’ld be the first one to raise my cell phone up in hopes it would get fried.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I just leave the darn thing turned off most of the time. Drives hubby nuts. (I hate phones.)

  216. tobias says:

    Read a few comments, the one about Zimbabwe and inflation got my attention I always thought it was the bread basket of Africa “in the good old days”. For the rest for a while I thought I was checking out “The Blaze”.

  217. Blade says:

    Rational Db8 [August 2, 2013 at 8:08 pm] says:

    @Blade says: August 2, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    Good, we need this as a teachable moment. The AGW death cult is intent on returning us to both the climate and the technological state of pre-1880. Coincidentally this is the pre-electrical era.

    One day, then a week, then two weeks without electricity for their TV, phones, tablets, hot water, heat and cooking will re-calibrate the mindset of population, changing them from being spoiled and stupid back to thankful.

    MANY many people would die. I sure as heck wouldn’t be wishing this one anyone. Take the southwest for example – you plunge major cities like Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Tuscon into power outage, and it happens to be summer with 115 degree temperatures, and a lot of people start dying pretty blasted quickly – or even if it’s the very very common 105-110 temps throughout the SW. Or northern cities in the winter with no heat, same result. And if the EMP/Solar flare is large enough to actually affect not just the electric grid, but also transportation, suddenly major cities all over the nation have NO food within a very few days. And what about water? How do people manage to get water, when pumping stations are down without electricity – that would be a massive problem within the first day or two…

    This wouldn’t be a “teachable moment” unless you like the idea of one he!! of a brutal lesson with possibly millions dead. But I’ll grant you it would certainly re-arrange priorities for all those who survive lickety split. Personally, I’ll wish for a re-alignment that’s a little less gruesome and severe.

    If you think that millions would die from a two-week blackout then you should change your handle to “Irrational Db8″. Millions and millions would be terribly inconvenienced, and that is exactly the point.

    But please do feel free to “wish for a re-alignment that’s a little less gruesome” since dreams, no matter how fantastic are still okay in a free society. So knock yourself out. I just prefer tough love to wishful thinking. It works better for alcoholics and druggies for example stopping them before they overdose or wrap the car around a tree or oncoming another car. Note that in this analogy the bloody conclusion is NOT the temporary blackout ( that’s the moment of clarity ), instead it is allowing them to succeed in boxing us in with a narrow range of inferior sources of energy, for example windmills, solar, geothermal, hydro and other magic while killing nuke, oil, coal and eventually gas which they will certainly get around to.

    There’s a pretty good chance we’ll see a dry-run rehearsal pretty soon because up here in New York they are shutting down and converting coal plants to natural gas. Simultaneously they are attacking the one remaining Nuke plant that supplies over 1/3 of the juice to NYC. This follows the decades ago successful closing of the Shoreham Nuke plant 5 minutes after it was constructed by the previous Cuomo. They are setting us up for massive trouble later when Gas prices inevitably rise again or when the eco-terrorists tire of going after Nuke and Coal and decide to attack this other fossil fuel instead.

    So as we follow the exact same path of most Euroweenies I look forward to a demonstrative reminder of our pre-industrial unspoiled garden of eden that the greenies so desire. It will be especially fun to watch our big cities, those islands of ivory towers like Manhattan fend for themselves in such a circumstance. Cities that stockpile spoiled arrogant elitists, produce nothing, and import everything, suddenly find themselves with a short supply of edible food and no power for their cellphones, and no signal even if they have a bunch of batteries lying around. Those that are still in the cities today will have no one to blame but themselves. Myself, I got out of Dodge long ago.

    For the record, I for one do not believe the Armageddon tales of solar overload or man-made EMP anyway. Sure there will be lots of blown transformers and perhaps many dead small cheap DC circuit boards, and there is a lesson in this as well. We studied Tempest long ago and somehow managed to shove all that knowledge down a memory hole. After a global blackout that information will have to be dusted off and revisited.

  218. Rational Db8 says:

    @ Blade says: August 6, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    How do you figure it would be limited to a two week blackout? The estimates are far worse than that for a Carrington type event. And just how many do you think are likely to die if that two week blackout is in the middle of summer, especially with temperatures in the SW over 110 degrees and even nights often still above 100 by midnight or later…. or if it hit in the middle of the winter during a serious cold snap? How are people in these large cities supposed to get water during a complete blackout? How about all the residents in hospitals and nursing homes, you think they’d be fine during an extended blackout, especially those that have to have electric powered equipment to live? For argument’s sake, let’s say it is limited to two weeks. Are you ok then with thousands of extra deaths to provide your “teachable moment?” Tens of thousands?

  219. Blade says:

    @Rational Db8

    Me? I’m not calculating anything! Two-weeks was what I said at most in that original comment you quoted and ran with.

    Naturally the longer blackout is the worse are the effects, that’s simple. You ask how to estimate the deaths? Well why would you believe me or anyone else? I wouldn’t believe me or anyone else in this climate ( pardon the pun ). Estimates would be expected to match the amount of funding the estimator would be stealing from the taxpayer. They would most likely attribute anything and everything to a blackout including the “normal” daily death toll background noise.

    Sure, in 110° heat people that are spoiled by fossil fuel generated air conditioning will suddenly relive the daily life of their great-grandparents. Likewise in winter it would really be a throwback since they will remember that their ancestors would be chopping down trees and throwing it into fireplaces now non-existent in their high-rise apartments. Perhaps it will then cross their tiny minds how we managed to do away with that old way of clear-cutting forests and slaughtering every animal in sight for food, coats and fuel by recycling long-dead lifeforms instead. That was the real “green” thing to do, and we did it quite by accident.

    Education is the key. If they remain uneducated don’t be surprised by what comes next as they manually disassemble the industrial revolution piece by piece, accomplishing over a long period of time what a blackout will help simulate in an instant.

  220. Rational Db8 says:

    @ Blade says: August 6, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    Ok, then let’s compromise – we’ll go for a “teachable moment” that happens to come during relatively mild weather, and not longer that hospitals etc., have available fuel (or are able to get it) to run their generators. And the general population is able to get sufficient fluids so they don’t die of dehydration. That probably would help people get some decent sense of perspective in life that’s currently sadly missing – but without mass deaths.

  221. Niall says:

    It’s all a cover story for the real threat: overhead cometary explosions.

Comments are closed.