My Solar Anniversary


Last week the Chico News and Review published an editorial (A smoked Red Herring) with my name right at the top, lambasting me for my investigations into climate change. That’s fine, but the editorial implied that I have no interest in alternate energy or reducing air pollution.

That’s not the case, I’m very pro alternate energy, and am a member of NSRE as well as the City Sustainability Commission. I’ve stated repeatedly that pollution reduction is a good thing.

Today is the 1 year anniversary of the solar power project I spearheaded as

a CUSD Trustee for Little Chico Creek School.

The project has exceeded production and financial expectations, producing 186,646 Kilowatt hours of electricity, and offsetting 231,441 pounds of CO2 emission as of this morning. You can watch the progress in real time on the schools solar energy webpage.

My skeptical interest in man driven climate change has to do with my meteorology background. If we are going to make wholesale policy changes based on the science, it needs to be bulletproof. When science becomes politicized, we have to look closer. That’s what I’m doing. Right now I’m finding some holes in the theory that CO2 is the sole reason the earth is heating up. I’m finding sloppy science in the most basic measurements of surface temperature, upon which the entire global warming issue is built. See my series “How not to measure temperature

Also I’d point out that the premise of “Smog is Smog” posited by the Chico News and Review is incorrect. CO2 is not a major component or initiator of “smog”. Ozone, nitrous oxides, particulates, and water vapor are the major components, and I’m all for eliminating smog.

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Michael Jankowski
June 15, 2007 10:24 am

Because you’re investigating weather stations, it’s automatically assumed you have no interest in being energy-conscious. I guess the Chico News & Review probably also assumes someone like Al Gore would be among the most energy conscious folks in the world.
My next vehicle will be a hybrid, the home I hope to start constructing in the next 1-2 yrs will have a strong solar element, etc, but I also have a “skeptical interest” as you do.
It probably won’t be too long before the Chico News & Review accuses us of being paid for by big oil.

David Walton
June 15, 2007 8:15 pm

The CN&R is a joke, no one I know takes anything they write seriously (although I am sure they have their followers down at the “Peace and Justice” Center). There are worse papers — check out Reno’s version for some real gut churning “reportage”.
CN&R is Chico’s own version of Weekly World News, except that they probably actually believe what they print.

June 16, 2007 7:57 am

What is it with the CN&R? Do they have some personal vendetta against you? I, personally, gave up on the CN&R a long time ago. It used to be an interesting read while I was eating lunch but now it’s just another tabloid rag.

June 19, 2007 10:52 am

I’m disappointed the N&R didn’t contact you before commenting. I had really hoped the new editor, Evan Tuchinsky was going to raise the bar for the N&R.

June 21, 2007 5:31 am

So water vapor is a component of smog? Every time a human (or any mammal) breathes out, we’re contributing to smog? (Not to mention every time one of us boils water. Oh yeah, and by extension, anyplace with high humidity also has high “smog” levels–under that criteria, I’d hate to live in rural MN or in S LA!) Now I don’t know how much H20 a person contributes as compared to a car, but surely if you multiply all the humans on the earth you’re going to be able to assert a lot of “smog” is simply due to human breath. I’d just concentrate on the particulates, NOx, and O3 when discussing smog, just to avoid sounding a little silly.
Just an observation.
*** REPLY: Well the word “smog” is a portmanteau of smoke and fog. Fog is water vapor. Sometimes the fog component is much lower, sometimes higher, but whatever the ratio, water vapor is a part of it, but not necessarily the driver of it.

November 1, 2008 9:19 pm

[…] the few people on the task force that actually walked the talk, as I had put solar on my home and a local school, plus I drive an electric car (though I’ve since upgraded to a newer model […]

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