Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org) The Science and Environmental Policy Project
Quote of the Week:
Scientifically it is sheer absurdity to think we can get a nice climate by turning a CO2 adjustment knob. Klaus-Eckar Puls, German physicist and meteorologist who supported the IPCC until he conducted his own investigation. [H/t Timothy Wise link under Challenging the Orthodoxy.]
Number of the Week: $68.4 Billion US
By Ken Haapala, Executive Vice President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
Heartland Conference: The Heartland Institute’s Seventh International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC-7) is taking place in Chicago, Illinois from Monday, May 21 to Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at the Hilton Chicago Hotel, 720 South Michigan Avenue. The event will follow the NATO Summit taking place in Chicago on May 19–21. The Theme is Real Science, Real Choices. Open to the public, registration is required. http://climateconference.heartland.org/
Once Venerable Institutions: We continue to see publications by once venerable institutions overtaken by alarmist claims. According to the E&E reporter, the Scripps Institution of Oceanography produced a study claiming that warming will wipe out one-third of the California snowpack (Sierra Mountains) by 2050 and two-thirds by the end of the century. [TWTW was unable to locate the actual study on the Scripps web site.]
The claim was immediately repeated by officials at the California Air Resources Board (CARB). CARB has been one of the most active regulatory authorities in the nation, often using the scantiest scientific justification for its regulations. The implication is that the loss of the snowpack will have a disastrous effect on agriculture and urban areas that depend on the moisture from the Sierra Mountains. http://www.arb.ca.gov/lispub/rss/displaypost.php?pno=5864
No doubt based on climate models that have not been verified and validated, the study has a number of deficiencies that are exposed by a simple examination of the physical world. As ICECAP points out, in spite of 20th century warming, there has been no net change to the snowpack as measured at the Donner summit. The snowpack varies with the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO). Last year, the Donner summit had a record snowfall that remained well into the summer.
A second major deficiency is the failure to recognize that since the 1920s California has built a major system of dams to capture the moisture coming off the west side of the mountains. These serve two purposes. One is to stop the annual floods that devastated communities downstream; and, two, to provide irrigation water for the San Joaquin Valley (southern Central Valley) which is now a bountiful crop producing center, but, previously, was a desert in the summer. The officials responsible for the dams monitor the snowpack to determine how much they should draw down the water in anticipation for the spring floods. The plants, or urban areas, do not care if the moisture fell as snow or rain, as long as it is available when needed.
The formerly venerable National Geographic produced another alarmist article on global warming. Among other points, it failed to note that temperatures have not risen in over a decade, and Antarctica is not warming. If nature continues to ignore global climate models, such articles will contribute to the decline in credibility of the magazine. Please see links under Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate or be Vague?
Science by Polls: The publication, Nature Climate Change, published a study proclaiming that the American public is willing to accept a national clean energy standard (mandates). It is based on a political poll in which the authors claim a high level of confidence. It doesn’t pass the sniff test. The authors claim that the mandate requiring that by 2035 80% of electricity coming from renewable sources will increase electricity prices to households by only $48 to $59 per year. A simple look at the change in electricity rates in European countries or US states that have adopted mandates demonstrates that the author’s estimates are ridiculously low. Please see links under Questioning European Green and Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.
Solar Wars: The US Commerce Department announced that it has found that Chinese firms dumping low cost photovoltaic solar panels in the US and has proposed import tariffs of 31 to 250% on these products. China has proposed to retaliate by examining US subsidies on alternative energy sources and perhaps impose import tariffs on US products. The dispute illustrates several issues. One, it reinforces the view that China heavily subsidized its domestic solar panel industry not so much for domestic consumption but for export. Two, it demonstrates the extent to which Washington is willing to protect an industry that produces unreliable, expensive electricity.
North Dakota: In March, North Dakota became the second leading oil producing state in the US, exceeding Alaska. In less than a year it went from number 4 to 2 and in eight years from number 8 to 2. This increase is primarily due to hydraulic fracturing of oil bearing shale to extract high quality crude (tight oil). The production of the next two leading states, Alaska and California, has been severely limited by regulations by Washington and California. Please see Article # 1.
Corrections and Amplifications: Last week’s TWTW contained the statement: “…the Sierra Club has begun a campaign calling natural gas a dirty fuel. Of course, the objective is to cripple the economy by shutting down all forms of energy use and electric power generation.” Reader Paul Kenyon correctly challenged the conclusion, asking for evidence. The conclusion is not based on announcements by the Sierra Club, but based upon its actions. It has, or is opposing, all major sources of electric power generation in the US: coal, hydro, nuclear, and, now, natural gas. Although oil is not used to produce electricity the Club opposes that as well. http://www.sierraclub.org/goals/. We appreciate all amplifications and corrections.
Number of the Week: $68.4 Billion: In a speech to the Senate on Thursday evening, Senator Inhofe revealed a new study by the Congressional Research Office reporting that between Fiscal Year (FY) 2008 and 2012, the US government will spend $68.4 Billion on global warming / climate change issues. TWTW has not yet determined how well integrated this study is with the previous study from the General Accountability Office that the US spent $107 Billion on global warming issues between FY 1998 and 2010. Global warming is big business in the US.
BOOK REVIEW: The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future by U.S. Senator James Inhofe
Probably more than any one single individual, Senator Inhofe (R, OK) has prevented of cap-and-trade of carbon dioxide, or similar legislation, from being adopted by the US Congress. The task has often been a lonely one, during which Senator Inhofe demonstrated a willingness to contradict much of the establishment leadership, including those in his own party.
For over a decade, Senator Inhofe has faced the wrath of the environmental lobby. At the 2003 global warming conference of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), he was confronted with wanted-posters showing his face accompanied by the caption “The most dangerous man on the planet.” He was not intimidated. Instead, the “Renegade Conservative from Oklahoma” went to the desk of the National Environmental Trust, responsible for the posters, and thanked them for not misquoting him.
In a frank, plain-speaking style that is associated with his native state, Senator Inhofe explains why he entered politics, not his first choice of careers, and what motivated him to take highly unpopular positions, rather than getting along by playing along. In 2003, Inhofe became chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and established three principles for the work of the committee: “(1) it should rely on the most objective science, (2) it should consider costs on businesses and consumers, and (3) the bureaucracy should serve, not rule, the people.”
The effectiveness of Inhofe’s leadership was demonstrated in the fall of 2009, after the Democratic Party took control of Congress and the Presidency. Cap-and-trade had passed the House and many believed it would surely pass Senate. In early November, hoping to have a bill passed in time for the Copenhagen IPCC conference in December, committee chairman Barbara Boxer refused to allow time for a complete economic analysis of the legislation. Senator Inhofe walked out of the meeting and announced to the press that the bill is dead. It never came to a vote before the Senate.
Shortly thereafter, the Climategate emails appeared, illustrating the nefarious actions of a number of scientists who actively supported the IPCC. The Copenhagen conference soon followed, which ended in a disaster for the IPCC. In the US, the EPA is trying to regulate carbon dioxide emissions, claiming they endanger public health and welfare. Inhofe understands the weaknesses of this approach and may prove to be more than a match for the politically powerful EPA.
In this personal view, Senator Inhofe treats his political opponents with kindness and appears humble in spite of his accomplishments. The book concludes with several appendices, one of which explains, in his terms, the motivation of the UN and its proponents and why their vision and actions are incompatible with Inhofe’s view of America. If anything, some skeptics may think Inhofe’s comments are too kind.
The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future by James Inhofe, U.S. Senator, 2012, WND Books, Washington, DC, ISBN 978-1-936488-49-0, 319 pp including endnotes and index. Available on Amazon
For the numbered articles below please see this week’s TWTW at: http://www.sepp.org. The articles are at the end of the pdf.
1. North Dakota Tops Alaska in Oil Output
By Jack Nicas, WSJ, May 15, 2012
2. Groups Sue Again Over Oil Drilling off Alaska
By Jim Carlton, WSJ, May 17, 2012
3. Wind-Generated Energy Is Working Well for Us in Iowa
By Governor Terry Branstad, Letter, WSJ, May 15, 2012
NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Science: Is the Sun Rising?
Is The Stratosphere Responsible For Global Warming?
By David Whitehouse, GWPF, May 15, 2012
[SEPP Comment: A possible new explanation on how high energy galactic cosmic rays, modulated by the sun, cause temperature variation on earth.]
Schmidt’s “Conspiracy Theory”
By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, May 16, 2012
Suppressing Scientific Inquiry or Data
Climate Commission Fudges Hot Day Data
By Jennifer Marohasy, Her Blog, May 14, 2012 [H/t ICECAP]
Challenging the Orthodoxy
Will Happer: CO2: friend or foe?
By Lubos Motl, Reference Frame, May 17, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Links to a 90 minute video of Happer discussing CO2 in 2010.]
The Belief That CO2 Can Regulate Climate Is “Sheer Absurdity”
By John Hinderaker, Power Line, May 13, 2012 [H/t Timothy Wise]
Future Southwest Drought in Doubt?
By Patrick Michaels, World Climate Report, May 14, 2012
Defending the Orthodoxy
Major Environmental Treaty Tackles Black Carbon as Climate Pollutant
By Staff Writers, Washington DC (SPX), May 17, 2012
The short-lived climate pollutants are responsible for 40 to 45% of all warming, with carbon dioxide responsible for the other 55-60%.
[SEPP Comment: Natural forces no longer matter!]
Statistical Analysis Projects Future Temperatures In North America
By Pam Frost Gorder, Columbus OH (SPX), May 16, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Shouldn’t they try to validate and verify the models first?]
Questioning the Orthodoxy
Stocker in Action
By David Holland, Bishop Hill, May 14, 2012
[SEPP Comment: The British Government appears to be waking up to the fact that much of the critical IPCC work is done in secret.]
Using Earth’s Blessings To Better Mankind and Planet
By David Legates, Townhall, May 14, 2012
The Rebranding of Global Warming (Demoting an exaggerated issue)
By Ken Maize, Master Resource, May 14, 2012
Only global poverty can save the planet, insists WWF – and the ESA!
Windfarms for all, but without using steel or concrete
By Lewis Page, The A Register, May 16, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
Progressive climate science
By Anthony Sadar, Washington Examiner, May 14, 2012
Questioning European Green
UK councils may be obliged to lower emissions
By Martin Livermore, Scientific Alliance, May 17, 2012
[SEPP Comment: The EU economy is faltering, carbon dioxide emissions are down by 2%. The EU climate commissioner declares the decline of CO2 emissions demonstrates the success of the Emissions Trading Scheme, even as the cost of tonne CO2 fell to 7 euros. Would a depression, with huge reductions in CO2 emissions, and a corresponding cost of CO2 at zero, be called a triumph in cap-and-trade regulation?]
The cost of energy bills soar by 140pc in eight years
The cost of household energy has risen seven times faster than household income since 2004, according to a study
By Staff Writers, Telegraph, UK, May 18, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
Green Energy Fiasco: German Electricity Prices To Double
Translated from German, Deutsche Presse Agentur, May 16, 2012
Is Europe giving up on energy efficiency?
By Sonja van Renssen, European Energy Review, May 14, 2012
Shale gas boom threatens European renewables investments – MGT
By Elza Pell, Environmental Finance, May 17, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
Questioning Green Elsewhere
Taxpayers Subsidize Forbes ‘Green’ Billionaires’ Schemes
By Paul Chesser, NLPC, May 15, 2012
Indian NGOs Accuse UK Of Colonialism, Racism, For Funding Forced Global Warming Sterilisations
From Haunting the Library, GWPF, May 18, 2012
Expanding the Orthodoxy
Federal government spent nearly $70 billion on ‘climate change activities’ since 2008
By Caroline May, Daily Caller, May 17, 2012
UN talks take first steps on 2015 climate deal
By Staff Writers, Paris (AFP), May 17, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Desperate to collect money from developed countries. If developed countries bear most of the responsibility for taking the world out of the Little Ice Age, shouldn’t they be the ones collecting rather the paying.]
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta On Defensive Over Global Climate Warm-Mongering
By Larry Bell, Forbes, May 13, 2012
Green Police: 1st Global ‘Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Summit’ Held in France.
Haunting the Library, May 17, 2012
Rio + 20 – World Control?
‘The Real Enemy Is Humanity Itself’
By Ben Pile, From Spiked, May 17, 2012
Forty years ago, two ideas about humanity’s relationship with the natural world caught the imagination of the richest and most influential people. The first was that the demands of a growing population were taking more from the planet than could be replaced by natural processes. The second, related idea was that there exist natural ‘limits to growth’. These two reinventions of Malthusianism became the basis of a new form of global politics, which has sought to contain human industrial and economic development ever since.
Looming U.N. Mega-Conference in Rio to Seek ‘More Sustainable Future’
By Patrick Goodenough, CNS News, May 15, 2012 [H/t Timothy Wise]
WWF says over-consumption threatens planet
By Staff Writers, Geneva (AFP) May 15, 2012
[SEPP Comment: More alarmist claims. World population growth rate has fallen from 2.2% in the early 1960s to about 1.1% today. The article claims that global population is spiraling!]
Problems within the Orthodoxy
Atmospheric observations of Arctic Ocean methane emissions up to 82° north
By Kort, et al, Nature Geoscience, Apr 22, 2012
Ed Caryl Responds To Latest Warmist Gaseous End-Of-World Scare Scenario
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, May 12, 2012 [H/t ICECAP]
[SEPP Comment: See like to article immediately above.]
Seeking a Common Ground
Editorial Bias And The Crisis Of Science Communication
By Benny Peiser, GWPF, May 12, 2012
[SEPP Comment: A paper presented to the European Parliament in 2007 – little has changed.]
Economists list cheapest ways to save the world
By Staff Writers, Copenhagen (AFP), May 14, 2012
[SEPP Comment: The third Copenhagen Consensus lead by Lomborg.]
Guest Post By Kiminori Itoh ” What Is The Psychological Origin Of The Narrow View Of The IPCC? – Socio-Psychological Aspect Of The Climate Change.”
By Roger Pielke Sr, Pielke Climate Science, May 18, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Do climate scientists of the west lack flexible thinking necessary to comprehend complex issues such as climate change?]
Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate, or be Vague?
More Nonsense from Scripps: Rising temperatures could eliminate two-thirds of California snowpack
By Staff Writers, ICECAP, May 17, 2012
Article by Anne C. Mulkern, E&E Reporter, Published: Wednesday, May 16, 2012
What Is Global Warming?
The Planet Is Heating Up—and Fast
National Geographic, No Date [H/t Bud Bromley]
[SEPP Comment: More alarmist claims from a formally valuable magazine.]
Rapid Climate Changes Turn Minn.’s North Woods into a Moose Graveyard
By Daniel Cusick, E&E repoter, Earth First, May 18, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Could the reported decline be the introduction of wolves in the area? During the same period, moose have proliferated in New England in such numbers that they have become a threat to motorists.]
Potomac River threatened by pollution, Congress, new report says
By Darryl Fears, Washington Post, May 15, 2012
[SEPP Comment: In the 1960s and early 1970s there was a major breach in the sewer line serving much of the suburbs north and west of Washington. Raw sewage was being dumped into the river immediately upstream of Washington. Private citizens, not government regulators, demanded this be cleaned-up. Today, the river is healthy and supports sports fishing contests immediately downstream of Washington.]
Climate scientists discover new weak point of the Antarctic ice sheet
By Staff Writers, Breme, Germany (SPX), May 15, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Using unverified and unvalidated models to projects 60 years into the future.]
Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.
Willingness to pay and political support for a US national clean energy standard
Aldy, J. et al. Nature Climate Change, May 13, 2012
[SEPP Comment: The estimated cost of 80% electricity from renewables is ridiculously low and unsupported by experience.]
The perfect climate for hollow threats
By Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun, May 14, 2012 [H/t Des Moore]
[SEPP Comment: More on the false death threats.]
Models v. Observations
We can’t predict the climate on a local, regional, or continental scale
By Tony Cox and Jo Nova, Her blog, May 17, 2012
Question And Answer On The Value Of Dynamic Downscaling For Multi-Decadal Predictions
By Roger Pielke Sr, Pielke Climate Science, May 16, 2012
Varied Views on Extreme Weather in a Warming Climate
By Andrew Revkin, NYT, May 11, 2012 [H/t ICECAP]
[SEPP Comment: It is not established that there has been an increase in severe weather. It is incumbent on those who claim it to product the evidence. Clichés are not evidence.]
Hurricane drought days at an all time high – Katrina Karma ?
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 16, 2012
[SEPP Comment: A new scare – global warming is causing fewer hurricanes?]
Trenberth’s missing heat still missing: new paper shows a near flat ocean temperature trend – 0.09°C over the past 55 years
By Anthony Watts, WUST, May 16, 2012
Changing Sea Ice
New paper using RADARSAT data: Antarctic ice shelves slowed down – “…have not been changed in a significant way in the past 12 years”
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, May 17, 2012
Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes
EU issues warning to carbon tax rebels China, India
By Staff Writers, Brussels (AFP) May 15, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Will the next step for the EU be a tax on the carbon content of imports?]
Subsidies and Mandates Forever
Wind energy without the PTC
By Lisa Linowes, Wind Action, May 11, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Continued demands for subsidies of wind power.]
Wind Energy: The Next Green Black-Hole
By Marita Noon, Townhall, May 15, 2012 [H/t Martin Mangino]
EPA and other Regulators on the March
Get even more lead out: CDC
By Staff Writers, ACSH, May 18, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Even the CDC appears to be adapting a linear no-threshold model.]
Energy Issues – Non-US
The Future of Oil: Geology versus Technology
By Staff Writers, IMF Working Paper, European Energy Review, May 13, 2012
[SEPP Comment: The perils of predicting future oil prices]
Oilsands apocalypse at odds with credible science
Editorial, Calgary Herald, May 17, 2012
Australia to become energy superpower?
By Staff Writers, UPI, May 14, 2012
Energy Issues — US
What the Keystone pipeline won’t do
Editorial, Washington Post, May 13, 2012
[SEPP Comment: The Washington Post discovers there is a world market for oil and sudden disruptions in the market affect price. This is hardly justification for not building the pipeline.]
James Hansen’s War Against Canada
By Kenneth P. Green, Master Resource, May 16, 2012
Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?
Star States on the Road to U.S. Hydrocarbon Plenty
By Julia Bell, Master Resource, May 15, 2012
Two new LNG projects planned in North America
By Edward McAllister and Jeffrey Jones, Reuters, May 16, 2012
[SEPP Comment: This brings to total planned projects to export LNG to 12. Remains to be seen how many will be built.]
Canadian oil production may hit six million bpd by 2020: CIBC
By Yadullah Hussain, Financial Post, May 17, 2012
Methane hydrate technology fuels a new energy regime
By Neil Reynolds, Globe and Mail, May 15, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
Washington’s Control of Oil and Gas
No Virginia, There Is No Sanity Clause In Obama Drilling Permit Policy
By Larry Bell, Forbes, May 15, 2012
GAO To Obama: More Oil Than Rest Of The World
Editorial, IBD, May 14, 2012
Oil Spills, Gas Leaks & Consequences
A Push From the Mississippi Kept Deepwater Horizon Oil Slick Off Shore, Penn Research Shows
By Staff Writers, Philadelphia, PA (SPX), May 16, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Why is it a surprise that the outflow of the mighty Mississippi alters the currents in the Gulf?]
Nuclear Energy and Fears
Water waste set to become uranium resource in USA
By Staff Writers, WNN, May 9, 2012
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Solar and Wind
Wind Energy: The Wheels are Coming Off the Gravy Train
By Marita Noon, Energy Tribune, May 14, 2012
China rejects US antidumping ruling on solar panels
By Vicki Needham, The Hill, May 18, 2012
China government may begin anti-dumping and anti-subsidy probe against US firms
Nuying Huang, Shanghai; Jackie Chang, DigiTimes, May 17, 2012 [H/t GWPF]
European Union PV market largest worldwide
By Staff Writers, Paris, France (SPX) May 17, 2012
[SEPP Comment: A dubious honor.]
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other
Top Five Figures Influencing Renewable Energy in US
By Staff Writers, Washington DC (SPX), May 14, 2012
Catching the Wave of Alternative Energy
By Staff Writers, Portland ME (SPX), May 16, 2012
California High-Speed Rail: Highest Burn Rate Ever
By Tim Cavanaugh, Reason, May 14, 2012
Hurry Up And Spend? No, Slow Down And Think
Editorial, IBD, May 15, 2012
Review of Recent Scientific Articles by NIPCC
For a full list of articles see www.NIPCCreport.org
Evolutionary and Adaptive Responses of Coral-Algal Symbioses to Potential Future Warming
Reference: Pettay, D.T., Wham, D.C., Pinzon, J.H. and LaJeunesse, T.C. 2011. Genotypic diversity and spatial-temporal distribution of Symbiodinium clones in an abundant reef coral. Molecular Ecology 20: 5197-5212.
[SEPP Comment: They adapt.]
ENSO: A Permanent Feature of a Future Warmer World?
Reference: Davies, A., Kemp, A.E.S., Weedon, G.P. and Barron, J.A. 2012. El Niño-Southern Oscillation variability from the Late Cretaceous Marca Shale of California. Geology 40: 15-18.
[SEPP Comment: No support for the proposition that warmer world would lead to a permanent El Niño.]
Hudson Bay Ringed Seal Populations Declined Significantly Due to Heavy Ice in the 1990s
Reference: Chambellant, M., Stirling, I., Gough, W.A. and Ferguson, S.H. 2012. Temporal variations in Hudson Bay ringed seal (Phoca hispida) life-history parameters in relation to environment. Journal of Mammalogy 93: 267-281.
[SEPP Comment: Cold periods can have negative impacts on the populations of ringed seals – and the polar bears that feed on them.]
Dust Deposits at the Bottom of the Aral Sea
Reference: Huang, X., Oberhansli, H., von Suchodoletz, H. and Sorrel, P. 2011. Dust deposition in the Aral Sea: implications for changes in atmospheric circulation in central Asia during the past 2000 years. Quaternary Science Reviews 30: 3661-3674.
[SEPP Comment: The deposits vary with warming and cooling periods over the past 2000 years.]
Tree Growth in the Swedish Sub-Arctic: Setting New Records
Reference: Hedenas, H., Olsson, H., Jonasson, C., Bergstedt, J., Dahlberg, U. and Callaghan, T.V. 2011. Changes in tree growth, biomass and vegetation over a 13-year period in the Swedish Sub-Arctic. Ambio 40: 672-682.
Jeff Masters on Mann and PCA
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, May 18, 2012
Other Scientific News
Caltech researchers gain greater insight into earthquake cycles
By Katie Neith, Pasadena CA (SPX), May 16, 2012
The Heliosphere Bow Shock Does Not Exist
By Staff Writers, Moffett Field CA (SPX), May 14, 2012
BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
Chinese Farmer Fights Smog With Fan Power
By Holly Williams, Sky News, May 17, 2012 [H/t Bishop Hill]
[SEPP Comment: The video of this near perpetual motion machine is amusing.]
Wasted milk is a real drain on our resources
By Staff Writers, Edinburgh UK (SPX), May 16, 2012
[SEPP Comment: Other reasons to drink all your milk.]
Nearly one-tenth of hemisphere’s mammals unlikely to outrun climate change
By Staff Writers, Seattle WA (SPX), May 16, 2012