Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup

Quote of the Week:

It is scientists, not sceptics, who are most willing to consider explanations that conflict with their own. And far from quashing dissent, it is the scientists, not the sceptics, who do most to acknowledge gaps in their studies and point out the limitations of their data…’ Editorial, Nature Magazine, Jul 28, 2011.

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Number of the Week: 54.5

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THIS WEEK:

By Ken Haapala, Executive Vice President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)

Videos from the Sixth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC) sponsored by Heartland Institute are available on the web. Go to:

http://climateconference.heartland.org/watch-…

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Quote of the Week: The quote of the week appeared in an editorial in Nature severely criticizing those who challenge the orthodoxy and the recently held International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC). The quote is particularly rich because Nature published the famous hockey-stick by Michael Mann which included “Mann’s Nature trick” – eliminating data that contradicted the central claim. The more recent tree ring data diverged significantly from thermometer data, thus calling into question the validity of using tree rings to estimate historic temperatures. These offending data were clipped. The article must be retracted. Please see Article # 1 and articles referenced under “ICCC.”

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ICCC: The attack by Nature on those who challenge the orthodoxy and the ICCC sponsored by Heartland Institute was soundly rebutted by Heartland President Joe Bast. Please see articles referenced under “ICCC.”

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Number of the Week: 54.5 mpg. With great fanfare, the number of the week was announced by the US President, taking time from the critical deficit ceiling issue. By 2025, 54.5 miles per gallon shall be the average mileage of automobiles sold in the US by a manufacturer. The number was agreed to by the White House, EPA, Department of Transportation, California Air Resources Board, several major automobile manufacturers, environmentalists, etc. All the major players were represented except one – the American public – the consumer who is expected to buy the automobiles manufactured under this standard.

A quick look at the costs of automobiles on web sites, such as one by US News, gives examples of the impracticality of thinking displayed by this announcement. The vaunted Toyota Prius has an invoice price of $22,108 plus but gets only 51 mpg city and 48 mpg highway – it does not qualify under the proposed standards. Comparing apples to apples, the low cost 2012 Honda Civic has an invoice of $14,388 plus and gets 28 city and 36 highway. The hybrid version gets 44 city and 44 highway but costs 53% more with an invoice starting at $22,134. A low cost SUV, Ford Escape, gets 23 city and 28 highway with an invoice of $20,120; the hybrid version has an invoice of $29,997, or 49% more, and gets 30 city and 27 highway. Frequently, hybrids get greater mileage in the city than on the highway. The regulations are orientated for the urban public and severely punish the suburban and rural public.

What is clear is that the administration is demanding the American public bends to its will and buys electric automobiles that have yet to prove their worth at significantly higher prices than gasoline automobiles. Electric vehicles have a limited range, and those employing gasoline engines do not get the mileage that is proposed. By claiming these standards will save households money, the administration continues the mantra that by forcing the public to spend much more money for energy and transportation, the public will save money.

The President has promised that the Federal government will buy many of these new, expensive automobiles, as if Washington does not recognize there are unemployment and revenue problems. Please see articles referenced under “Subsidies and Mandates Forever.”

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EPA continues its highly questionable expansion of regulatory powers based on dubious claims of public health. Even the National Academy of Sciences has warned the EPA science committee that EPA must improve on its science or face scientific irrelevance. However, it is uncertain that scientific relevance is important to the leadership of the EPA.

Reports this week indicate that, for political purposes, EPA adjusted its rules on cross state emissions it announced last week. At the last minute, many east coast states that supported the president in the last election were excluded from the rules. Texas, which certainly does not support the administration, was suddenly included. Apparently, EPA considers premature deaths, heart attacks, and asthma, which it used to justify the regulations, are a function of state political boundaries.

EPA announced that it is considering employing the Clean Air Act to regulate drilling wells for oil and natural gas extraction using hydraulic fracturing “fracking.” Drilling wells for oil started in 1859. Hydraulic fracking techniques have existed for over 60 years. Recent advances in these techniques permit a rapid development of oil and gas reserves that were previously uneconomical to extract. No doubt, affordable energy alarms this administration and EPA, so EPA must regulate it under the guise of public health, no matter how scientifically irrelevant the guise is. Please see Article # 2 and articles referenced under “EPA and other Regulators on the March.”

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Australia: Although it is winter down-under, things are heating up. The government just released 340 pages of legislation to enact its proclaimed simple tax on carbon – a stunning contradiction of terms in language, logic, and science. The general population is not taking these new taxes lightly. Based on reports, a peaceful rebellion is occurring. From all parts of the island continent eleven convoys are organizing to drive to the capitol city and demand a new election. The convoys are scheduled to arrive on August 22. Please see articles under “Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes.”

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Models and Observations: This week, an UAH press release announced the publication of a new study by Roy Spencer and Danny Braswell estimating the extent of energy lost to space with a warming of the earth.

The new study employs an innovative lagged model, that is, one that incorporates time delays, thereby estimating energy loss over time during periods of warming. The model is adjusted in order to explain the temperature data from the Hadley Climate Research Unit in Great Britain and observations from the Earth’s Radiant Energy System (CERES) instruments on the Terra satellite over the period 2000 to 2011. During this period there was no major warming trend but there were periods of warming and cooling.

Spencer’s model suggests that, in any warming period, the loss of energy to outer space starts earlier than the IPCC models consider. Consequently, the total loss of energy to outer space is significantly greater than that projected by the IPCC models. This finding is consistent with the observations. The new model, far simpler than the ones used by the IPCC, better explains the warming or lack thereof during the period of 2000 to 2011, than the IPCC models.

The model explanations are not definitive and are open to interpretation and testing. But they suggest there are far more powerful natural influences on temperature than human CO2 emissions and other variables considered by the IPCC and its models.

Of course, the global warming community re-acted as may be expected. Kevin Trenberth, a lead author of the Summary for Policymakers (SPM) of the Fourth IPCC Assessment Report (AR4), declared “I cannot believe it got published!” Spencer’s retort on his blog is worth noting. Please see the press release, Article # 4, and the referenced articles under “Models v. Observations.”

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ARTICLES:

For the numbered articles below please see: www.sepp.org.

1. Scientific Casualties of the IPCC Hockey Stick Fiasco

By Tim Ball, Climate Change Dispatch, Jul 24, 2011 [H/t ICECAP]

http://www.climatechangedispatch.com/home/924…

2. A Tale of Two Shale States

Pennsylvania’s gain vs. New York’s missed opportunity.

Editorial, WSJ, Jul 26, 2011

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405270…

3. Why are lawyers arguing climate science?

By Charles Battig, VA-SEEE, Letter, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Jul 16, 2011

http://www2.timesdispatch.com/news/letters-to…

4. Climate models get energy balance wrong, make too hot forecasts of global warming

By Roy Spencer & Phillip Gentry, Press Release, UAH, Jul 26, 2011 [H/t ICECAP]

http://www.uah.edu/news/newspages/campusnews….

“Not only does the atmosphere release more energy than previously thought, it starts releasing it earlier in a warming cycle.”

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NEWS YOU CAN USE:

Climategate Continued

Osborn: “I don’t have any core measurement data and therefore have non to give out!”

By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, Jul 25, 2011

http://climateaudit.org/2011/07/25/osborn-i-d…

McIntyre: “This is my opinion and, if someone can provide an alternative explanation of his statements that does not involve lying, I’ll willingly consider the explanation, apologize and amend the post.”

Challenging the Orthodoxy

Green agenda has parallels with excesses of communism

Herald Sun, July 28, 2011 [H/t Marc Morano, Climate Depot]

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/opinion/green-age…

[SEPP Comment: About two speeches one by Czech President Vaclav Klaus, the other by Greens senator Christine Milner announcing a government investigation against those in the Australian media who are biased against action on climate change (carbon taxes).]

Malcolm Turnbull’s climate politics

Which “science” and which “morality”, Malcolm?

By Bob Carter, Quadrant, AU, Jul 25, 2011

http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-plane…

We Get What We Pay For With Disastrous Climate Science

By Larry Bell, Forbes, Jul. 26 2011

http://blogs.forbes.com/larrybell/2011/07/26/…

Climate change suspect must be given a fair trial

GOVERNMENTS across the world have paid billions to find links between carbon dioxide and the climate, but very little to find the opposite, and that’s a problem.

By Joanne Nova, The Australian, Jul 30, 2011

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affa…

Climate Witchcraft and Post-Normal Science

By Norman Rogers, American Thinker, Jul 29, 2011

http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/07/climat…

[SEPP Comment: Post normal science – twisting scientific research and standards to serve personal political goals.]

Indian study shows climate change is probably caused by natural factors

By Kelvin Kemm, Engineering News, Jul 29, 2011 [H/t ICECAP]

http://www.engineeringnews.co.za/article/indi…

Defenders of the Orthodoxy

Climate Change Debunked? Not So Fast

Stephanie Pappas, LiveScience Senior WriterDate: 28 July 2011 Time: 07:14 PM ET

http://www.livescience.com/15293-climate-chan…

Questioning the Orthodoxy

Comments On The Article “Stratospheric Pollution Helps Slow Global Warming” By David Biello

By Roger Pielke, Sr, Pielke Climate Science, Jul 25, 2011 [H/t ICECAP]

http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2011/07…

Archaea — An Overlooked Source Of Greenhouse Gas:

By David Whitehouse, The Observatory, Jul 29, 2011

http://www.thegwpf.org/the-observatory/3536-a…

[SEPP Comment: EPA claims nitrous oxide emissions are a cause of asthma.]

Can Prof Rajendra Pachauri really survive ‘Glaciergate’?

The head of the UN panel on climate change, Prof Rajendra Pachauri, is still adamant that one famously exaggerated report should not cost him his job.

By Peter Stanford, Telegraph, UK, Jul 26, 2011

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/…

[SEPP Comment: It was not only one exaggerated report, but many.]

Why Most Forbes Readers Know More About Global Warming than Most Climate Scientists

By William Pentland, Forbes, Jul. 28 2011

http://blogs.forbes.com/williampentland/2011/…

[SEPP Comment: Trivial – the social cost of carbon is a ludicrous concept fit for bureaucrats. The discount rate applied is arguing about the number of angels dancing on the head of a pin.]

Sci/tech MPs want peer review, not pal review

UK science publishing not exactly scientific

By Andrew Orlowski, A Register, Jul 29, 2011 [H/t GWPF]

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/07/29/mps_p…

Questioning the European Green

Some lessons Washington could learn from London commentators

By: Ron Arnold, Washington Examiner, Jul 28, 2011

http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columni…

Official Price Estimates Dubious: ‘DECC Has Massaged Green Energy Costs’

Britain’s policies to curb emissions and spur investment into nuclear and wind to secure power supplies may raise electricity prices for factories by as much as 58 percent by 2030, according to a government study.

By Catherine Airlie, Bloomberg, Jul 29, 2011

http://www.thegwpf.org/uk-news/3538-official-…

Expanding the Orthodoxy

Climate Change Adaptation: Aligning Funding with Strategic Priorities

GAO-11-876T July 28, 2011 [H/t Timothy Wise]

Highlights Page (PDF) Full Report (PDF, 18 pages)

http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-11-876T…

[SEPP Comment: Integrate invalid projections from falsified models as the standard of planning for the entire nation.]

Seeking a Common Ground

“Building Trust” and FOI Refusals

By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, Jul 23, 2011

http://climateaudit.org/2011/07/23/building-t…

“If there were any adult supervision in the climate community, it would start, not with polysyllabic ruminations about climate communications, but with practical measures to stop pointlessly counterproductive conduct by members of the community.”

ICCC

Heartland Replies to Nature

By Joseph Bast, Heartland Institute, Jul 28, 2011

http://www.heartland.org/full/30490/Heartland…

Heart of the matter

The Heartland Institute’s climate conference reveals the motives of global-warming skeptics

Editorial, Nature, Jul 28, 2011

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v475/n73…

Climate-change politics: The sceptic meets his match

Joe Bast and his libertarian think tank are a major force among climate sceptics – but they just can’t win the battle over science.

By Jeff Tollefson, Nature Magazine, Jul 27, 2011

http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110727/full/4…

Finding common ground with climate-change contrarians

Scott Denning, Colorado State University, UCAR Mag, Jul 27, 2011

http://www2.ucar.edu/magazine/columns/guest-c…

Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate?

Why we should give the cold shoulder to a BBC Trust Review that argues the broadcaster should ignore global-warming ‘deniers’

By David Rose, Daily Mail, UK, Jul 24, 2011

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-201…

Steve Jones tells the BBC: don’t give ‘denialists’ so much air-time

In his report for the BBC Trust, Steve Jones actually attacks the BBC for having too little global-warming bias.

By Christopher Booker, Telegraph, UK, Jul 23, 2011

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/…

Models v. Observations

On the Misdiagnosis of Climate Feedbacks from Variations in Earth’s Radiant Energy Balance

Roy W. Spencer and William D. Braswell, Journal of Remote Sensing,

http://www.drroyspencer.com/wp-content/upload…

Fallout from Our Paper: The Empire Strikes Back

By Roy Spencer, His Blog, July 29th, 2011

http://www.drroyspencer.com/…

New NASA Data Blow Gaping Hole In Global Warming Alarmism

By James Taylor, Forbes, Jul 27, 2011 [H/t Roger Cohen]

http://blogs.forbes.com/jamestaylor/2011/07/2…

[SEPP Comment: Somewhat over the top.]

Additional Information On The “Ocean’s Missing Heat” By Katsman and van Oldenborgh 2011

By Roger Pielke, Sr, Pielke Climate Science, Jul 29 2011

http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/…

If the “question cannot be answered using observations alone”, how can it be stated that “When compared to the available observations, the model describes the ocean temperature rise and variability well”? This is a circular argument. Models themselves are hypotheses, and the more accurate statement by the authors would be that the available observations do not falsify the model as replicating reality.

State-of-the-Art Climate Models and Extreme Meteorological Events and Consequences

Reviewed by Sherwood, Craig, and Keith Idso, CO2 Science, Volume 14, Number 30: 27 July 2011 [H/t SPPI]

http://www.co2science.org/articles/V14/N30/ED…

[SEPP Comment: IPCC author Trenberth states the models do not project precipitation correctly. Should they be trusted for temperature?]

Modeled Ocean Temperatures from 1880 through 2010

By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Jul 22, 2011

http://www.drroyspencer.com/…

Measurement Issues

The “great dying of thermometers” – helping GISS find the undead thermometers, complete with code

By Walter Dnes, WUWT, Jul 24, 2011

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/07/24/the-gre…

[SEPP Comment: Canadian weather stations continue to report data even though NASA-GISS dropped them from its data base without explanation. NASA-GISS projects the readings from far away stations.]

Sheep study confirms a premise of McIntyre & McKittrick 05

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, July 27, 2011

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/07/27/sheep-s…

[SEPP Comment: Additional reason why tree rings may not be a good proxy for temperatures. Leibig’s Law of the Minimum: plant growth is controlled by the most scarce resource available; not by the total of resources available.].

Changing Weather

2011 Temperature Watch

By Patrick Michaels, World Climate Report, Jul 25, 2011

http://www.worldclimatereport.com/…

Changing Earth

Canadian scientists discover new clues to rapid Arctic ice melt

By Bob Weber, the Canadian Press, Jul 28, 2011 [H/t Mark Duchamp]

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/technolog…

Antarctic ice – more accurate estimates

By Verity Jones @ Digging In The Clay, WUWT, Jul 27, 2011

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/07/27/antarct…

Researchers Provide Detailed Picture of Ice Loss Following Collapse of Antarctic Ice Shelves

By Staff Writers, SPX, Jul 26, 2011

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Researchers…

The Political Games Continue

GOP spending bill would nix international climate aid

By Ben Geman, The Hill, Jul 26, 2011

http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/…

[SEPP Comment: Cutting off funds for IPCC dreams.]

EPA’s funding facing rollback

Obama threatens to veto measure

By Paige Winfield Cunningham, Washington Times, Jul 25, 2011

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/jul/…

[SEPP Comment: Long overdue.]

House Republicans call on EPA chief to testify on smog rules

By Andrew Restuccia, The Hill, Jul 28, 2011

http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/…

Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes

The Convoy of no confidence is amassing towards Canberra

By Joanne Nova, Her Blog, On July 28, 201

http://joannenova.com.au/2011/07/the-convoy-o…

Breaking Australian Carbon Tax Legislation Released

By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Jul 28, 2011

http://joannenova.com.au/2011/07/breaking-aus…

[SEPP Comment: Learning from the 2009 – 2010 US Congress, apparently the simple tax took 340 pages of legislation – benefiting special interests.]

A Slow Start for the for Carbon Credit Market

By Valerie Volcovici, NYT, Jul 25, 2011

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/25/business/en…

[SEPP Comment: Blame the U.S. for the bad market.]

Subsidies and Mandates Forever

Obama tightens fuel-economy standards

By Andrew Restuccia, The Hill, 07/29/11 11:39 AM ET

http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/…

Carmakers Back Strict New Rules for Gas Mileage

By Bill Vlasic, NYT, Jul 28, 2011

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/29/business/ca…

Payne: Obama’s CAFE fairy tale

By Henry Payne, The Michigan View.com, Jul 29, 2011

http://detnews.com/article/20110729/MIVIEW/10…

Higher fuel standards mean higher death toll

Editorial, Washington Examiner, Jul 28, 2011

http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/2011/07…

Federal ‘Clean Energy’ Loan Guarantees: Crazy Dollars for Bubble Jobs

By Vance Ginn, Master Resource, July 28, 2011

http://www.masterresource.org/2011/07/federal…

Jacking up your electric bill

More regulations on industry will hurt the flickering economy

Editorial, Washington Times, Jul 27, 2011

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/jul/…

“Either an RES or CES would also raise the average cost of generating electricity in the United States because, in the absence of the standard, regulators and generators would generally choose the lowest-cost method of producing electricity.”

EPA and other Regulators on the March

National Academy of Sciences warns EPA to get its science straight or risk irrelevance

By Bryan Preston, Pajamas Media, Jul 12, 2011

http://pajamasmedia.com/tatler/2011/07/12/nat…

Obama’s EPA adds Texas to new cross state emissions rule at the last minute

By Bryan Preston, Pajamas Media, Jul 8, 2011

http://pajamasmedia.com/tatler/2011/07/08/oba…

[SEPP Comment: Political games of rewarding friends and punishing enemies in the name of public health.]

Is EPA’s true purpose protecting the environment or shutting down industry?

By Bryan Shaw, Washington Examiner, Jul 23, 2011

http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columni…

EPA proposes air pollution standards for ‘fracking’

By Andrew Restuccia, The Hill, Jul 28, 2011

http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/…

[SEPP Comment: It was only a matter of time. The claimed win-win is as false as the claim of asthma attacks and premature deaths resulting from fracking. EPA must be compelled to produce the science justifying such claims.]

EPA’s air-quality overkill

Costly new air-quality standards are based on suspect statistics

By Steve Milloy, Washington Times, Thursday 28, 2011

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/jul/…

EPA Delays Ozone Standard Reconsideration for Fourth Time

By Sonal Patel, Power News, Jul 27, 2011

http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/3899.html?h…

[SEPP Comment: Apparently some are fighting EPA control of economic development throughout the nation.]

FERC Order Aims to Remove Barriers to Transmission Development

By Staff Writers, POWERnews, Jul 27, 2011

http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/3897.html?h…

[SEPP Comment: Earlier reports suggested that FERC will abandon the principle that beneficiaries pay.]

Nuclear Fears & Responses

The risks of radiation

By Jan Willem Nienhuys, European Energy Review, Jul 25, 2011

http://www.europeanenergyreview.eu/site/pagin…

[SEPP Comment: A lengthy article discussing radiation risks.]

Nuclear stress tests begin for Japan

By Staff Writers, World Nuclear News, 25 July 2011

http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/RS_Nuclear_…

Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?

Japan to test-drill for seabed ‘burning ice’: Nikkei

By Staff Writers, AFP, Jul 25, 2011

http://www.energy-daily.com/reports/Japan_to_…

Administration Control of Fossil Fuels

Keystone versus green Keynesianism

Keystone jobs should matter more to Obama than green theology

By Peter Forster, Financial Post, Jul 26, 2011

http://opinion.financialpost.com/2011/07/26/p…

House passes bill to force Obama decision on Canada-Texas pipeline

By Andrew Restuccia, The Hill, Jul 26, 2011

http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/…

Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy

Rotten Wind in the State of Denmark

Denmark is yet another country that has made wind power a hallmark of its energy policy. But are the lofty claims about Danish wind true? No.

By Kenneth Green, The American, Jul 18, 2011 [H/t Timothy Wise]

http://american.com/archive/2011/june/rotten-…

[SEPP Comment: Part of a series on fail of wind power in Europe.]

Energy Fact of the Week: China’s Soaring ‘Clean’ Energy Sector?

By Steven F. Hayward, Enterprise Blog, Jul 27, 2011

http://blog.american.com/2011/07/energy-fact-…

[SEPP Comment: A great graph for those who claim China is racing against the west to build alternative energy sources.]

T. Boone’s Windy Misadventure And the Global Backlash Against Wind Energy

By Robert Bryce , Energy Tribune, Jul. 28, 2011 [H/t GWPF]

http://www.energytribune.com/articles.cfm/812…

“I’m not going to have the windmills on my ranch,” Pickens declared. “They’re ugly.”

Rhetoric on renewables does not match reality

By Jon Ralston, Las Vegas Sun, Jul 24, 2011 [H/t Cooler Heads Digest]

http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2011/jul/24/r…

“To achieve long-term economic and environmental benefits – to make Nevada a cleaner state and create an energy-exporting economy – people are going to have to accept an initial hit on rates.” [SEPP Comment: What do the people get in return – additional hits?]

Solar industry on the rise

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Jul 28, 2011

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/07/28/solar-i…

“Solar energy is creating more jobs per megawatt than any other energy source.” [SEPP Comment: The genius of American prosperity is delivering more for ever lower costs. Increasing costs will result in households paying more, reducing their disposable income.]

Regulatory hurdles hinder biofuels market

By Phil Ciciora, Business and Law Editor

Champaign IL (SPX) Jul 26, 2011

http://www.biofueldaily.com/reports/Regulator…

Carbon Schemes

Work to Begin on DOE-Backed Carbon Sequestration Demonstration in Montana

By Staff Writers, POWERnews, Jul 27, 2011

http://www.powermag.com/POWERnews/3903.html?h…

California Dreaming

Gov. Brown pushes 12-gigawatt clean-power goal

California should get that much electricity from local clean power sources – such as rooftop solar panels, small wind turbines and fuel cells – by 2020, he says, but is short on details about how.

By Tiffany Hsu, Los Angeles Times, July 26, 2011

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-small-r…

Mitchell, Reilly Tout Ruinous Calif. Auto Policy

By Marlo Lewis Cooler Heads, July 28, 2011

http://www.globalwarming.org/2011/07/28/mitch…

Wind farms multiply, fueling clashes with nearby residents

Demand for clean energy has led to a wind turbine building boom. But many living in their shadow decry the electricity generating projects as pesky eyesores.

By Tiffany Hsu, Los Angeles Times, July 24, 2011

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-wind-po…

Electric cars about to cost more in California

The state has run out of the $5,000 rebates it was giving drivers who bought all-electric vehicles such as the Nissan Leaf and Tesla Roadster. Also, prices for the Nissan Leaf are going up.

By Jerry Hirsch, LA Times, Jul 21, 2011

http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-a…

Review of Recent Scientific Articles by NIPCC

For a full list of articles see

http://www.NIPCCreport.org…

Tropical Cuba has Excess Winter Deaths from Heart & Cerebrovascular Diseases

Reference: Marie, G.C., González, R.T. and Palanco, I.M. 2009. Seasonal Variation in mortality for five main death causes. Cuba, 1996-2006. Internet Journal of Epidemiology 6 (2), available at www.ispub.com.

Climate Change and Marine Productivity

Reference: Chavez, F.P., Messie, M. and Pennington, J.T. 2011. Marine primary production in relation to climate variability and change. Annual Review of Marine Science 3: 227-260.

Nine Years of Soil Carbon and Nitrogen Relations in the Duke Forest FACE Study

Reference: Lichter, J., Billings, S.A., Ziegler, S.E., Gaindh, D., Ryals, R., Finzi, A.C., Jackson, R.B., Stemmler, E.A. and Schlesinger, W.H. 2008. Soil carbon sequestration in a pine forest after 9 years of atmospheric CO2 enrichment. Global Change Biology 14: 2910-2922.

No Long-Term Trends in Southwestern United States Drought

Reference: McCabe, G.J., Legates, D.R. and Lins, H.F. 2010. Variability and trends in dry day frequency and dry event length in the southwestern United States. Journal of Geophysical Research 115: D07108, doi:10.1029/2009JD012866.

Environmental Industry

Indefensible

By Paul Chesser, American Spectator, Jul 27, 2011

http://spectator.org/archives/2011/07/27/inde…

Other Scientific News

Bacteria: Blame them for the rain?

By Eryn Brown, Los Angeles Times

May 26, 2011, 12:25 p.m.

http://www.latimes.com/health/boostershots/la…

Wave power can drive intense heat of Sun

By Staff Writers, SPX, Jul 28, 2011

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Wave_power_…

SDO Spots Extra Energy in the Solar Corona

By Karen C. Fox for NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, SPX Jul 28, 2011

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/SDO_Spots_E…

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BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:

Climate change ‘may make truffles a German delicacy’

By Staff Writers, AFP, Jul 20, 2011

http://www.seeddaily.com/reports/Climate_chan…

“Nevertheless, he noted that further studies were required, citing ‘enormous scientific, economic, and gastronomic importance.'”

Climate-change-induced wildfires may alter Yellowstone forests

By Staff Writers, SPX, Jul 29, 2011

http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Climate_cha…

Has warming put ‘Dirty Dozen’ pollutants back in the saddle?

By Staff Writers, AFP, Jul 24, 2011

http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Has_warming…

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

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22 thoughts on “Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup

  1. I suggest that, for greater clarity, you enlarge your italicized headings like “Questioning the Orthodoxy.” At present they blend into the background and one loses a sense of the hierarchy they imply.

  2. I know, the U.S. cars are really dursty. It is increadible, how much fuel they need! Each time I come to the U.S. and rent a small car, I wonder how can that tiny thing drink as much as a lorry!
    VW Passat Blue Motion makes 65.3 miles/gallon diesel on a highway. Easily.
    And it makes 57 miles/gallon on average.
    So, what is a problem making the cars more efficient?

  3. My favorite abouve is New NASA Data Blow Gaping Hole In Global Warming Alarmism
    I don’t see where Global Warming actually floated in the first place.
    One thing has bugged me all week: the ID of Harry in Harry_Read_Me.txt Harry Reid, NE?
    Lastly, I wasn’t aware of the 536 AD Catastrophe, that one got by me until this week, and the reference to the Sun. Real Climate beat that one to a pulp in 2008. Did WUWT?

  4. Ah, yes, the CAFE mileage. This mileage value is worthless as a measure of anything. Note how “gasoline” mileage for FlexFuel vehicles figured into the fleet average–makes the worst data fudging in Nature look like respectable science.

  5. @Alex…Nothing at all is wrong with this goal, though it may conflict badly with what customers desire in an automobile, and therefore leads to misdirected resources. But if you investigate how one arrives at this average you will find a charade.

  6. Not sure if I lost the thread somewhere but the Skoda Fabia Greenline does 69mpg (Urban) and 94mpg (extra urban) and 83mpg (combined cycle) which knocks the hybrids into a cocked hat and de-penailises rural dwellers. Of course the University of Michigan’s(?) shockwave engine will kinda double the possibility but investing in Hi-Tech is anti green so it looks like the USA will have to import on borrowed Chinese money.
    Nothing new there then.

  7. This is such obvious BS that it is hardly worth commenting on – as for ‘scientists’ versus ‘sceptics’. leave out the grant addicted and comfortable salaried government ‘scientists’, then the number of real scientists who really believe this statement is true are as rare as rocking horse poo.
    “It is scientists, not sceptics, who are most willing to consider explanations that conflict with their own. And far from quashing dissent, it is the scientists, not the sceptics, who do most to acknowledge gaps in their studies and point out the limitations of their data…’
    But wake up North America – you are the only place in the world, where it is almost impossible to buy diesel powered automobiles, which are 30-40% more fuel efficient (with the same performance!) as gasoline powered vehicles.

  8. I agree with the aspect that Eurodiesels are far more efficient. Problem is the USA EPA looks at Diesel power as bad ,Hybrid Good. I have a friend who consistently gets 45 mpg in his TDL
    Jetta and drives like a maniac, His wife has a Pious er, Prius and gets 32-in town,,,,
    personally would like to see more here…Oh and he is a local fire fighter and always cringes when a hybrid is involved in an accident….

  9. Fox News had a short (positive) blurb on Dr.Spenser’s study. The dam, hopefully, is beginning to break.

  10. “It is scientists, not sceptics, who are most willing to consider explanations that conflict with their own. And far from quashing dissent, it is the scientists, not the sceptics, who do most to acknowledge gaps in their studies and point out the limitations of their data”
    Not just Orwellian but tragic. That statement does apply to branches of science that function properly, without the tyrannical handcuffs of an unquestionable orthodox assumption. Such branches don’t have any external skeptics because they don’t need any external skeptics.
    I’m thinking of bacteriology, where major new developments happen every day in taxonomy, function and overall view of the importance of bacteria. This rapid change is fairly new, and it’s happening because at some point the science broke out of its axiomatic shackles. For 200 years bacteriologists assumed the cells could only survive in a narrow range of conditions, and could only serve a narrow range of purposes.
    The new discoveries arise from actual observation in all sorts of places where nobody thought to look before: clouds, sulphur vents, deep rock, belly buttons. And the discoveries generate new understandings of bacteria in places where they were already known, like the intestine.
    Bacteriology doesn’t need an external Monckton or Soon to question its rigid assumptions, because there aren’t any rigid assumptions. It clearly allows free exploration, and allows the new explorations to form new theories.

  11. “Quem deus vult perdere, Prius dementat” (He whom the gods would destroy is nuts about the Prius.) –.Ancient Greek Proverb:

  12. Please note that using MPG in comparisons is full of issues. US Gallon is 3.7854 Litres and UK Gallon is 4.5461 Litres. So 54.5 MPG in the US would equal 65.45 MPG in the UK for what would normally be non-diesel vehicles due to local US EPA policy it seems. That being said the Skoda Fabia Greenline clocked 127.8 MPG recently.

  13. There are a number of examples of vehicles outside the US that get slightly better mileage than the proposed 54.5 mpg, so presumably the target is achievable, provided that these vehicles can achieve the same efficiency with the myriad of safety and emissions regulations imposed by the US government. However, these high-efficiency vehicles barely surpass 54.5 mpg, which means there can be very few vehicles that get worse mileage. Automakers will be unable to sell any vans, trucks, or SUVs. There are many people who have strong needs for larger vehicles. How are farmers, construction workers, plumbers, carpet cleaners, etc, supposed to earn their livelihoods if the only vehicles available are compact cars? If these people are put out of work, how are the American people going to get these services?
    To make it a little more personal, my sister owns a small asphalt business and requires a small fleet of pickup trucks. Inexpensive trucks are required for her to stay in business, and 54.5 mpg will make her business unprofitable. As for me, I own a small recreational boat, which provides me with my preferred form of recreation. I deeply resent the government telling me that I can no longer own a boat because tow vehicle are effectively banned. And even ignoring my boat, I use my truck on a regular basis for a variety of reasons. I hate to think about life without a truck.

  14. The CAFE stardard is not the same standard we see on the EPA sticker on the window.
    The new 54.5 mpg is really only requiring EPA rating of around 41-42 mpg.

  15. I’ll take Obama and his 2025 mpg goals for cars any day over the Tea Partiers who wish to use the nuclear option to run the deeply indebted US into the final abyss.
    “The regulations are orientated for the urban public and severely punish the suburban and rural public.”
    There is no explanation as to how Obama’s announcement will “severely punish the suburban and rural public.” I would like to understand the reasoning and motives behind such a claim. How will someone be “severely punished” if Obama’s goals are enacted by 2025?

  16. Jerzy says:
    July 31, 2011 at 11:30 pm

    I’ll take Obama and his 2025 mpg goals for cars any day over the Tea Partiers who wish to use the nuclear option to run the deeply indebted US into the final abyss.
    “The regulations are orientated for the urban public and severely punish the suburban and rural public.”
    There is no explanation as to how Obama’s announcement will “severely punish the suburban and rural public.” I would like to understand the reasoning and motives behind such a claim. How will someone be “severely punished” if Obama’s goals are enacted by 2025?

    Dislike getting into politics here, but this IS politics and despotic control by the bureacrats who deliberately intend on destroying the economy.
    No. 55 mpg cars CANNOT be used out west, on farms, in businesses, nor with families. Trucks, vans, SUV’s are bought for a purpose: move people and goods from place to place as efficiently and safely and economically as possible. More, they are uilt with a CHOICE. With FREEDOM to purchase what a family needs to move their lives and their tools and their material. 12 4×8 foot plywood sheets going to fit in a car designed for 55 mpg? A 55 mpg car going to carry a twenty foot piece of steel or 16 foot long piece of trim wood? a 55 mpg car going to carry 2 parents, 2 kids, and 2 grandparents? Is it going to vcarry 4 kids and 2 parents?
    to AVERAGE 55 mpg, who is going to suffer? For what good? How many million people will die for this farce? (Smaller cars now kill 5000 more innocents PER YEAR than the safer larger ones do).
    No 55 mpg CAN do those jobs that must be done -> Which meets the EPA/Obama’s intent of destroying the economy, families, and the anybody except their urban voters. (Who are getting around in the 1880-1920’s non-OSHA, non-EPA, man-killing tunnels, rails, and cities that already have the jam-packed squished-in cells that the democrat Washington masters desire.
    The Tea Party? It is Obama who is deliberately destroying America and destroying the nation’s economy – In 2-1/2 years, he has not even passed a single budget. He has driven the economy to death in service to his ideals of socialism and the union thugs who are getting the government money for their retirements and their pensions and their (government) jobs. It is the Washington extremist liberals who are lying, cheating, bankrupting the rest of the country as they buy votes for the democrats.

  17. Jerzy says:
    July 31, 2011 at 11:30 pm
    I’ll take Obama and his 2025 mpg goals for cars any day over the Tea Partiers who wish to use the nuclear option to run the deeply indebted US into the final abyss.
    Thanks, Jerzy, for dutifully parroting another example of a recently deployed well known and characteristic, but now desperate Progressive propaganda tactic: brazenly attribute to the Tea Partiers’ policies, the actual harmful effects resulting from the wealth-confiscating, anti-wealth creating obsessive tax, spend, and debt-creating policies always favored and enacted by the Progressives themselves; which under Obama are what finally brought the Tea Partiers to the fore in such strong opposition to begin with and which in turn form the basis for their own policies to redress these grossly unsustainable effects, which are always proven to be harmful to a country’s populace.

  18. America needs cheap energy to overcome its problems so:-
    Close down the EPA.
    Abandon ‘clean energy’. It is neither clean nor cheap.
    Give the energy companies the green light to build more coal fired producers as the US has virtually unlimited coal supplies and a professional work force who can extract the stuff.
    Change the laws governing petroleum extraction thus pushing the US oil reserves from 5% to 30% of the global total.
    Abandon the payments to encourage green jobs which are killing the real jobs out there.
    Abandon the fund grabbing climate change rubbish that has a strangle hold on everything in the States.
    America would then become competative again and be able to pay its way in the world.

  19. A man goes to a psychiatrist and says, “Doc, my brother’s crazy, he thinks he’s a climatologist who is able to use abstract computer models to predict imminent climactic apocalypse.” The doctor says, “Why don’t you turn him in?” The guy says, “We would. But we’ve gotten acclimated to his assurance of certainty”.

  20. It is scientists, not sceptics, who are most willing to consider explanations that conflict with their own.

    Again with the implication that scientists are not skeptics and therefore skeptics are not scientists!
    These, so called scientific bodies, seem to have forgotten the very basics of scientific inquiry!
    How long must we wait for scientific inquiry, to get back on track? Is it possible that the scientific method has been derailed permanently, in regards to climatology?? Just because this religion is new, does not mean it is any better, than any that have come before. GK

  21. “All the major players were represented except one – the American public – the consumer who is expected to buy the automobiles manufactured under this standard.”
    =========
    Well said.
    My vote for quote of the year.

  22. @Kevin Kilty:
    Nothing at all is wrong with this goal, though it may conflict badly with what customers desire in an automobile, and therefore leads to misdirected resources.
    Forget “what customers desire”: Forcing drivers into smaller, lighter weight cars where thousands more of them die every year is a much worse problem than “misdirected resources”, unless the proponents can show that reduced pollution saves a greater number of lives. The fact that it was possible to enact the new rule without such a showing proves that the legal system is broken.

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