Guest post by WUWT volunteer moderator Andi Cockroft
I was fortunate the other night to attend a presentation by Christopher Monckton as part of his Climate of Freedom Tour of New Zealand.
Organised and arranged by Climate Realist NZ (not to be associated with Climate Reality), the tour starts at the north of the North Island of New Zealand, and works its way inexorable southwards to the tip of the South Island. I owe a personal round of thanks to Neil & Esther Henderson for their unstinting service to the sceptic movement, and for all their energies in arranging this exhaustive tour.
I happen to live near Wellington in the south of the North Island. It was a tad unfortunate then, that the breakfast presentation that should have taken place less than 1Km from where I live was cancelled due to lack of bookings – perhaps the 7am start, the time limit of 1 hour, or the $65 price tag all colluded. So it was that I had to travel some 40Km up the coast to the township of Paraparaumu on the North Island’s Kapiti Coast.
A second venue in nearby Wellington was for Press only, with just a few seats open to the public – sadly I missed out there.
Nonetheless, up in Paraparaumu I had about 20 minutes pre-session chat with His Lordship, whilst he greeted as many attendees as he possibly could – what a wonderfully charming and engaging thing for a speaker to do!
The local Kapakapanui Lions Club seemingly spared no expense, with a piper in full regalia to welcome Monckton into the building, and later a mighty Wurlitzer organ the likes of which I have not seen for probably 40 years or more played most enthusiastically serving as warm-up to the event.
As the lights died down, the Wurlitzer began playing again, and as it arose from the depths beneath the stage, there alongside was Monkton emerging as though from Hades – I wonder if Mann et al would make something of our very own “devil incarnate” ??
Monckton starts with great humour, and explains things in their simplest forms (although later certain complexities leave me struggling with many decades since I studied statistics at University)
Sadly though, this particular presentation was skewed by the needs of local politics.
As I said earlier, this presentation was on an area known as Kapiti, and here, the Kapiti District Council have just created mayhem by declaring some 1800 homes unsustainable due to projected coastal erosion. The nett effect of that has been to likely halve the value of many million-dollar homes at the stroke of a pen.
His Lordship was noticeable furious at Council’s actions, and chose to devote a significant portion of his presentation to debunking the science behind their alleged condemnation of perfectly good housing to the scrap heap.
Council plans to slowly withdraw services such as water, sewage, electricity etc to make these homes virtually uninhabitable. All based on a science that at first sight seems quite shonky.
Sad that the expansion of the discussion of sea-level rise was at the expense of any mention of Solar influence – something of significant interest to me. A small Q&A did address some of that but not much.
In all, just over 1½ hours of thoroughly well thought out, captivating, humorous and thought-provoking presentation, followed by about 20 mins of Q&A made the whole evening very well worthwhile
I would encourage any who can get to hear his lordship to do so – and most engaging, entertaining and informative session
Notes on 1800 Homes in Kapiti
The area in question is mostly built on sand dunes accreted over millennia. This area of the west coast of New Zealand’s North Island is well fed with sand from rivers to the North – particularly the Wanganui, Rangitikei and Manawatu.
To the North in an area known as Horowhenua, I have seen fences erected during the earliest European settlement in around 1840, now standing about 140 metres inland from the current foreshore.
Here in Kapiti, at the north, accretion seems unabated, in a couple of places to the South some erosion is evident.
A paper published in the N.Z. Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research entitled “Rates of coastal erosion and accretion in New Zealand” by Jeremy Gibb (Department of Geology, Victoria University of Wellington) provides an excellent introduction to the coastal dynamics of the whole coastline of New Zealand. His results for the north of Paraparaumu show 160 metres accretion since 1877. At Paraparaumu itself, things seem pretty stable with some accretion, whilst to the south – erosion in places, accretion in others.
So why the big difference reported now? And, why such heavy-handed treatment by Kapiti Coast District Council?
It seems highly likely that the 1800 home-owners will band together to create some form of class-action seeking at the very least a Judicial Review of Council’s decisions. Monckton doesn’t stop here in his advice however – he is absolutely convinced that the elected Councillors who have voted in favour of these actions could be held personally to account. This on the basis that making reckless decisions negate any protection that legislation would otherwise afford.
A report prepared by private consultancy Coastal Systems, here, forms the basis of Council’s decision-making process – and makes numerous assumptions such as variations in “storminess”
Nonetheless, the report is not directly about flooding from sea-level rise, rather it is estimating erosion – not necessarily the same things.
Also, things are not quite as they may seem. Coastal Systems claim their paper for Council was peer reviewed, they fail to declare relationships that actually make it “Pal Review”. Gibbs paper was naturally peer-reviewed – and done so before the advent of post-normal science.
I find all this quite amusing if it were not so catastrophic for those affected, since a large slice of the area is in such a strong accretion zone !!
Just one example that I cannot explain:-
In the 1978 Paper, Gibb has accretion of 160 metres since 1877, whilst the new paper shows what they forecast in 50 years (yellow) and 100 years (orange)
Why should sustained accretion over millennia suddenly change? I just wonder what Coastal Systems mean by “increases in wave height and storminess”
You can download the full range of shoreline maps/projections from KCDC here
I regret, I downloaded the Gibbs 1978 paper years ago, and cannot readily find it today. If there is enough interest I will look at making it available online.