Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #150

The Week That Was: 2014-09-20 (September 20, 2014) Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org) The Science and Environmental Policy Project

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

Climate Pep Rally? In the US and Canada pep rallies are popular events for students who wish to show their support for the school team before a sporting event. Needless to say, the appeal of these events is far more based on emotion rather than reason. Most who attend feel good about themselves for attending.

Modern political rallies have similar appeal – emotion rather than reason. Often, at such political events, key speakers use on a series of sound-bites without a strong core of reasoning connecting the sound-bites. These speeches are is sharp contrast with the speeches of Abraham Lincoln, and other classic speakers, whose speeches would have a strong emotional appeal built on a bedrock of reasoning.

The UN Summit on global warming/climate change on September 23 in New York City, announced by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, appears to be taking on the characteristics of a sports pep rally rather than a scientific event. According to reports, there will be no announcements of significant new scientific achievements or political breakthroughs. Instead, it will be an opportunity for those attending to feel good about themselves.

As of now, the leaders of China, India, Russia, Germany, Canada, and Australia will absent. According to the EDGAR data base by the European Commission, Joint Research Center and the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency the countries for which the leaders are not attending are ranked Numbers 1, 3, 4, 6, 8 &14 in 2012 world carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Instead of a serious event, the main attraction will be a People’s Climate March, with students being bussed in courtesy of organizations such as the Sierra Club. To accommodate this popular appeal, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has appointed Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio as a UN representative on climate change. DiCaprio may be best known as the lead actor in the movie Titanic. See links under Climate Pep Rally and http://edgar.jrc.ec.europa.eu/overview.php?v=CO2ts1990-2012



Quote of the Week: There is no harm in doubt and skepticism, for it is through these that new discoveries are made. Richard Feynman, 1985


Number of the Week: 35 years more?


A Friend: The American Council on Science and Health (ACSH) announced the death of its founder, Elizabeth Whelan, a strong advocate that empirical science takes precedence over popular appeal, and a friend of SEPP. SEPP Chairman Fred Singer serves on the ACSH advisory council. The tribute to her in the Wall Street Journal succinctly stated a few of her many strengths.

“…she took the sensible view that if the federal government wanted to ban something, it ought to have credible evidence for doing so.”

“Essentially what Beth Whelan tried to do was distinguish between science and technology that helped society, such as genetically modified foods, and things that harmed society, such as smoking tobacco.

Anyone who spent 10 minutes with Elizabeth Whelan knew there was one thing no one could buy: her integrity. She and the organization she founded have produced a legacy that will last.”

She leaves the world, and science, better off for having been here. See Article # 1.


Failed Hindcasts and Forecasts: On his blog, Roy Spencer discusses the possible actions of the Climate Establishment if warming were occurring faster than the models project. He asserts that the climate modelers would be all too willing to make the necessary adjustments to their models, even though they are unwilling to make the necessary adjustments to reflect what is actually occurring now. Necessary adjustments would require realization that the sensitivity of the earth to a doubling of CO2 is less than the 1.5ºC to 4.5ºC, estimated in the Charney Report to US National Academy of Sciences in 1979. The over-estimate has been largely followed in the five major Assessment Reports (ARs) by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the latest of which in 2013 repeats the 1.5ºC to 4.5ºC overestimate.

Recognition of the overestimate would largely eliminate the fear of global warming/climate change, resulting in a loss of justification for a large part of the Climate Establishment. Very simply, the climate modelers cannot afford to fully recognize natural causes.

In his presentation, Spencer makes a subtle, but important, correction regarding models as they over-predict surface warming since the satellite record began in 1979. He points out, that the models do not even get historic temperature trends correct. That is, they fail in what is called “hindcasts”, as well is in forecasts. See link under Challenging the Orthodoxy.


A Different View: Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Steven Koonin presents his views of the global warming/climate change controversy. Koonin “was undersecretary for science in the Energy Department during President Barack Obama’s first term and is currently director of the Center for Urban Science and Progress at New York University. His previous positions include professor of theoretical physics and provost at Caltech …”

Although TWTW may disagree with certain minor points, his comments largely agree with those in TWTW and as found in the reports by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC).

While some parts of the models rely on well-tested physical laws, other parts involve technically informed estimation. Computer modeling of complex systems is as much an art as a science.

We often hear that there is a “scientific consensus” about climate change. But as far as the computer models go, there isn’t a useful consensus at the level of detail relevant to assessing human influences.


A crucial measure of our knowledge of feedbacks is climate sensitivity—that is, the warming induced by a hypothetical doubling of carbon-dioxide concentration. Today’s best estimate of the sensitivity (between 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit and 8.1 degrees Fahrenheit) is no different, and no more certain, than it was 30 [35] years ago. And this is despite an heroic research effort costing billions of dollars.


Any serious discussion of the changing climate must begin by acknowledging not only the scientific certainties but also the uncertainties, especially in projecting the future. Recognizing those limits, rather than ignoring them, will lead to a more sober and ultimately more productive discussion of climate change and climate policies. To do otherwise is a great disservice to climate science itself. [Boldface added]

See Article # 2.


OAS: On his web site WUWT, Anthony Watts announced the formation of the Open Atmospheric Society (OAS), intended to provide a paperless and entirely online professional organization that will represent individuals who have been unrepresented by existing professional organizations that have become more activist than [science – based] in their outlook. It also aims to provide a professional peer reviewed publication platform to produce an online journal with a unique and important requirement placed up-front for any paper submitted; it must be replicable, with all data, software, formulas, and methods submitted with the paper. Without those elements, the paper will be rejected. This focus on replicability up front is not found in other similar organizations that publish scientific results.

Such an effort may be an important step to removing biased and irreproducible articles on climate science that appear frequently in current journals. For years, the American Economic Review, the publication of the American Economic Association, has had a data availability policy. Papers will be published:

… only if the data used in the analysis are clearly and precisely documented and are readily available to any researcher for purposes of replication.


For econometric and simulation papers, the minimum requirement should include the data set(s) and programs used to run the final models, plus a description of how previous intermediate data sets and programs were employed to create the final data set(s). Authors are invited to submit these intermediate data files and programs as an option; if they are not provided, authors must fully cooperate with investigators seeking to conduct a replication who request them.

Thus far, no major scholarly journals that cover climate science seem interested in making such requirements. If OAS begins to succeed, then critics of climate science may justifiably start asking: what do those publishing in journals that do not have such requirements have to hide? See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy and https://www.aeaweb.org/aer/data.php.


Temperature Trends: According to a press release by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA):

…the globally averaged temperature over land and ocean surfaces for August 2014 was the highest for August since record keeping began in 1880. It also marked the 38th consecutive August with a global temperature above the 20th century average. The last below-average global temperature for August occurred in 1976.

The press release is consistent with a similar release by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). However, the NOAA release is misleading. What is the extent of the continuous global coverage since 1880? TWTW suggests the coverage is extremely small. Second, the 20th century average has little to do with the cause of global warming and may be a continuation of a bias in the measurements. Third, several times in the recent past, both NOAA and NASA-GISS have had to back down from such statements.

On his blog, Roy Spencer addresses the apparent inconsistency between the NOAA/NASA-GISS claims and the atmospheric measurements. He states that if the source of warming is the ocean surfaces, such as during an El Niño, there is a 2 to 3 month lag between a surface warming of the oceans and a warming of the atmosphere. Thus, it may be several months before the announcements of NOAA/NASA-GISS can be independently verified. It will be interesting to see if NOAA and NASA-GISS back-down from their announcements, for whatever the reason. It is important to note, that if it is the surface that causes the atmospheric warming, it is not the greenhouse effect, which takes place in the atmosphere.

Spencer also suggests that the high sea surface temperatures may be the result of a decline in surface wind speeds, unrelated to Anthropogenic (human-caused) Global Warming (AGW) See links under Seeking a Common Ground and Measurement Issues.


Sea Ice: The Antarctic sea ice melt has yet to begin; however it is clear that the ice extent exceeds that of the entire record since systematic satellite measurements began in 1979. The Arctic sea ice melt is not yet quite over, but it will probably not meet the expectations of the global warming alarmists. The excuses why total sea ice is so extensive are almost as imaginative as those why there is no current warming trend. Once the sea ice seasons are over, TWTW will contain a further discussion. See links under Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice


Well Productivity: One of the major criticisms of deep underground horizontal drilling and multi-port hydraulic fracturing of dense shale using large amounts of sand and small amounts of chemicals was the rapid decline in the production of the wells. Some experts claimed that the process cannot result in long-term increase in US production of oil and natural gas. Increasingly, it is becoming apparent that the criticism was misplaced.

There is an extensive learning curve involved in how to best use such techniques. Indeed, it appears that the well drillers continue to learn. Even though drilling rig counts in major shale formations are not increasing significantly, total production is increasing substantially. US oil and gas production from shale may be more at the beginning of the learning curve rather than at the end of it. See Article #3 and Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?


Number of the Week: 35 years more? Some commentators expressing disappointment in the attendance at the Climate Pep Rally and the looming failure to reach an international agreement of carbon dioxide emissions by the end of 2015 are expressing that the goal set of 2020 was too soon and it should be 2050. Such a goal would add another 35 years from 2015.

As expressed in the Failed Hindcasts and Forecasts section above, it has been 35 years since the Charney Committee reported that a doubling of CO2 would cause a warming of the earth ranging between 1.5ºC to 4.5ºC. There has been no improvement since. Would another 35 years result in dramatic improvement of the official government-reported science? TWTW doubts it as long as the Climate Establishment refuses to recognize that it must successfully model the natural influences on climate before it can hope to model the human influences on climate. See http://www.therightclimatestuff.com/AGWScienceAssessRpt-1.pdf



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. Elizabeth Whelan’s Impact

A crusader for the integrity of science in public debates.

Editorial, WSJ, Sep 18, 2014


2. Climate Science Is Not Settled

We are very far from the knowledge needed to make good climate policy, writes leading scientist By Steven E. Koonin, WSJ, Sep 19, 2014


3. Fracking Gives U.S. Energy Boom Plenty of Room to Run

Current Top Gas Well Produces Five Times as Much as Record Setter a Decade Ago

By Russell Gold, WSJ, Sep 14, 2014




Commentary: Is the Sun Rising?

Spooky Pause…Solar Activity Now Has Leading German (Warmist) Science Journalist Asking About “Threat Of A Little Ice Age”

By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Sep 14, 2014


Challenging the Orthodoxy — NIPCC

Heartland Institute Responds to Activist Groups’ Attempt to Purge Texas Text Books of Inconvenient Climate Science Facts

By Jim Lakely, James Taylor, H. Sterling Burnett, The Heartland Institute, Sep 17, 2014


NCSE: Texas schoolbooks should stick to the climate dogma

By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Sep 17, 2014


The Texas textbook massacre

By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Sep 16, 2014


Link to article: Texas proposes rewriting school text books to deny manmade climate change

Analysis of proposed 6th grade texts show they falsely claim scientific disagreement about global warming

By Suzanne Goldenberg, The Guardian, UK, Sep 16, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Contrary to the Guardian reporter, the scientific disagreement is real and substantial!]

Challenging the Orthodoxy

A new professional society for meteorology and climatology is announced

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 16, 2014


The OAS and replicability

By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Sep 17, 2014


[SEPP Comment: See link immediately above.]

Interview Supplementing My Award Acceptance Remarks at ICCC-9

By Alan Carlin, Carlin Economics and Science, Sep 20, 2014


Reflections on Rapid Response to Unjustified Climate Alarm

By Richard Lindzen, CATO, Sep 18, 2014


UN Global Warming Propaganda Campaign: Return to Perceived Success Indicates Desperation.

By Tim Ball, A Different Perspective, Sep 17, 2014


Leo vs. science: vanishing evidence for climate change

By Tom Harris and Bob Carter, New York Post, Sep 14 2014


Boycotting the U.N. climate summit

Awareness grows that faulty science would keep millions in the dark

By Willie Soon and Christopher Monckton, Washington Times, Sep 18, 2014


A new study led by K.M. Hiremath of the Indian Institute of Astrophysics shows a strong, possibly causative correlation between variations in solar activity and in monsoon rainfall.

Certain Temperature and CO2 Gradients Were Required For IPCC >90% Human Caused Conclusion

By Tim Ball, Australian Climate Sceptics, Sep 14, 2014


Climate Change and the False Case for Haste

By Ross McKitrick, CATO, Sep 15, 2014


What if the Global Warming “Pause” was “Fast Forward” Instead?

By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Sep 15, 2014


Defending the Orthodoxy

Climate Change Is an Opportunity to Dramatically Reinvent the Economy

An interview with author and activist Naomi Klein

By Hamza Shaban, The Atlantic, Sep 19, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


[SEPP Comment: The science is immaterial, it is the ideology that is important.]

Preventing climate change and adapting to it are not morally equivalent

By David Roberts, Grist, Sep 16, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Seven things we learned from Lord Stern’s New Climate Economy report

A major new report says the world can tackle climate change without harming economic growth. Here’s the digested read

By Fiona Harvey, The Guardian, UK, Sep 16, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Keep the subsidies flowing, and tax carbon dioxide, it won’t work without them.]

Three graphs showing why climate action is good for the economy

By Mat Hope, Carbon Brief, Sep 16, 2014


Climate Pep Rally

10 Ways To Tell Tuesday’s UN Climate Summit Isn’t About Climate

By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Sep 17, 2014


WH cranks up heat ahead of UN summit

By Laura Barron-Lopez, The Hill, Sep 18, 2014


India won’t give new deal in UN Climate Summit

By Urmi Goswami, Economic Times, India, Sep 16, 2014 [H/t GWPF]


The Uninformed, Hypocritical, Emotionally-Driven People’s Climate March

By Roy Spencer, His blog, Sep 20, 2014


The U.N.’s Climate-Summit Charade

Western nations keep the talks going, to justify costly de-carbonization programs at home.

By Rupert Darwall, National Review Online, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t GWPF]


U.N.’s Climate Change Push Gains DiCaprio, but Loses India, China and Russia

By Lucy Westcott, Newsweek, Sep 17, 2014 [H/t GWPF]


With global conflict at the door, world leaders pursue futile climate efforts

By Steve Goreham, Communities Digital News, Sep 18, 2014


Marching in step on climate change?

By Karlyn Bowman and Jennifer Marsico, AEIdeas, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Surgeon general to speak before UN climate summit

By Timothy Cama, The Hill, Sep 18, 2014


[SEPP Comment “The face of public health policy for the Federal government” will speak.]

Bringing the Noise on Climate Change

By Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


‘Climate summit’ turning into an embarrassment for Obama and UN

By Thomas Lifson, American Thinker, Sep 17, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Questioning the Orthodoxy

Climate Hype Exposed

By Paul Driessen, CFACT, Sep 18, 2014


Decrying “Wishful Science” on NPR(!)

By Patrick Michaels, CATO, Sep 16, 2014


Previous rules of thumb for climate change worsened wet/dry turned upside down

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 15, 2014


The Pretzel Logic of Global Warming

By Brian C Joondeph, MD, American Thinker, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


The Oceans Ate Global Warming?

By Jonathon Moseley, American Thinker, Sep 15, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Global Warming Was Worth It

And if we had to, we’d do it again.

By David Harsanyi, The Federalist, Sep 10, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


[SEPP Comment: On the questionable assumption that carbon dioxide brought the world out of the Little Ice Age.]

The Economist Strains to Salvage AGW Theory

By David Allison, American Thinker, Sep 13, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Social Benefits of Carbon

Another benefit of climate change and increased CO2 – trees continue to grow at a faster rate

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 17, 2014


Link to paper: Forest stand growth dynamics in Central Europe have accelerated since 1870

By Pretzsch, et al. Nature Communications, Sep 12, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Buried in the paper are revealing sentences: Model results revealed climate change alone, that is, changes in temperature and precipitation, including an extended growing season, did not fully explain the observed growth trend in Norway spruce and European beech. However, if changes in air chemistry [CO2] were considered in addition, the simulated stand volume and average annual stand volume increment in beech and spruce for recent Central European conditions exceeded the values for past environmental conditions, as empirically demonstrated.]


Problems in the Orthodoxy

Julie Bishop rejects UN request to strengthen Australian climate targets

By Lisa Cox, Sydney Morning Herald, Sep 19, 2014 [H/t GWPF]


Scientists turn to Pope Francis and world’s religions to save the planet

Forget past arguments over Darwin or Galileo – scientists set sights on unlikely alliance with the world’s religious leaders to combat climate change

By John Bingham, Telegraph, UK, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t Malcolm Ross]


China insists wealthy countries should improve emission targets

By Staff Writers, AFP, Sep 19, 2014 [H/t GWPF]


Global CO2 Fight Evaporating…Climate Experts Concede “Minimal Willingness To Really Reduce Emissions”

By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Sep 13, 2014


“Self-Inflicted Apocalypse Fascination”! Germany’s Leading Daily Fed Up With End-Of-World Scenarios, Climate Catastrophe!

By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Sep 17, 2014


Seeking a Common Ground

The Curious Case of Record August Ocean Temperatures

By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Sep 19, 2014


How to criticize with kindness

By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Sep 15, 2014


JC at the National Press Club

By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Sep 16, 2014


The opinion-forming power of protest

By Martin Livermore, Scientific Alliance, Sep 19, 2014


Measurement Issues

August and June-August global temperatures each reach record high, driven largely by record warm global oceans

From Press Release NOAA, Science Daily, Sep 18, 2014


Are Record Ocean Surface Temperatures Due to Record Low Wind Speeds?

By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Sep 18, 2014


Gavin’s “warmest August ever” shows 8°C to 12.6°C temperature anomaly differences over only 276 miles

By Staff Writer, Hockey Schtick, Sep 16, 2014


NASA GISS Tweaks the Short-Term Global Temperature Trend Upwards

By Bob Tisdale, WUWT, Sep 15, 2014


Is the Australian Temperature record Accurate?

By Anthony Cox, Australian Climate Skeptics, Sep 15, 2014


Homogenisation of Williamtown temperatures, draws attention to hot Newcastle in 1878

By Jennifer Marohasy, Her Blog, Sep 15, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Ignoring solid long-term data in favor of short-term data that has the right message.]

Claim: Tornadoes occurring earlier in “Tornado Alley”

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 17, 2014


Statement from the Open Atmospheric Society on the paper ‘Peak tornado activity is occurring earlier in the heart of “Tornado Alley”

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 19, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Major improvements in instrumentation increase detection.]

Global carbon cycle may require reappraisal of historical climate events

By Staff Writers, Miami FL (SPX) Sep 17, 2014

Link to paper: Interpreting carbonate and organic carbon isotope covariance in the sedimentary record

By Amanda M. Oehlert & Peter K. Swart, Nature Communications, Aug 19, 2014


[SEPP Comment: It is a great stretch to apply what happened in a small section of the tropics to the global atmosphere.]

Changing Weather

Asian monsoon much older than previously thought

By Staff Writers, Tempe AZ (SPX), Sep 16, 2014


Link to paper: Asian monsoons in a late Eocene greenhouse world,

By Licht, et al. Nature, Sep 14, 2014


Claim: Fall foliage season may be later, but longer on a warmer Earth

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 18, 2014


Dutch unveil big plan to fight rising tides

By Staff Writers, The Hague (AFP), Sept 16, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Adaption makes sense. Contrary to the implications in the article, there is no evidence that sea level rise is increasing or that global warming will result in stronger storm surges.]

Changing Seas

New paper finds global sea levels rose < 7 inches during 20th century, with no acceleration

By Staff Writer, Hockey Schtick, Sep 19, 2014


Link to paper: Global and regional sea level change during the 20th century

By Manfred Wenzel and Jens Schröter, Journal of Geophysical Research, Sep 19, 2014


[Another] New paper finds North Carolina sea levels rising < 7 inches per century

By Staff Writer, Hockey Schtick, Sep 15, 2014


Link to paper: Quantifying the contribution of sediment compaction to late Holocene salt-marsh sea-level reconstructions, North Carolina, USA

By Brain, et al., Quaternay Research, Sep 12, 2014


New paper predicts Antarctica will only contribute a tiny -.87 to +2.5 inches of sea level rise by 2100

By Staff Writer, The Hockey Schtick, Sep 14, 2014


Link to paper: A model study of the effect of climate and sea-level change on the evolution of the Antarctic Ice Sheet from the Last Glacial Maximum to 2100

By M.N.A. Maris, et al. Climate Dynamics, Sep 13, 2014


Virginia Sea Level

By Willis Eschenbach, WUWT, Sep 13, 2014


Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice

Extent of Antarctic sea ice reaches record levels, scientists say

By Jane Ryan and Sam Ikin, Via ICECAP, Sep 17, 2014


Note by ICECAP: “An examination of the zonal winds at the surface (yellows and reds westerly, blues easterly) show no apparent correlation to expanded ice cover.”

Antarctica – where more ice and less ice is proof of climate change

By Jo Nova, Her blog, Sep 16, 2014


Link to paper: Modelled glacier response to centennial temperature and precipitation trends on the Antarctic Peninsula

Davies, et al. Nature Climate Change, Sep 14, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Nova brings up the volcanoes in the area that the paper fails to mention.]

Claim: New Antarctic sea-ice extent due to wind and ‘atmospheric warming’ – what warming?

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 15, 2014


Arctic & Antarctic sea ice extent demonstrates the bipolar seesaw theory of climate

By Staff Writer, Hockey Schtick, Sep 18, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Support of a paper published on March 30, 2014]

Antarctic sea ice set for record high as Arctic heads for sixth lowest extent

Antarctica poised for record high as figures show Arctic sea ice was millions of square kilometres below long-term average

By Adam Vaughan, Guardian, UK, Sep 17, 2014


Antarctic confusion

By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Sep 18, 2014


Link to article: Record sea ice around Antarctica due to global warming

By Staff Writer, New Scientist, Sep 17, 2014


[SEPP Comment: According to the New Scientist, the growth in Antarctic sea ice is caused by global warming.]

New paper links Arctic sea ice extent to absorption of sunlight by clouds

By Staff Writer, The Hockey Schtick, Sep 14, 2014


Link to paper: Connecting early summer cloud-controlled sunlight and late summer sea ice in the Arctic

By Yong-Sang Choi , et al. Journal of Geophysical Research, Sep 12, 2014


Just How Sure Are The Sea Ice “Experts” About The Arctic Melt Continuing? Looks Very Close To Zero

By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Sep 18, 2014


Changing Earth

Meteorite that doomed the dinosaurs helped the forests bloom

By Staff Writers, Tucson AZ (SPX), Sep 17, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Speculative.]

Agriculture Issues & Fear of Famine

Greening the world’s deserts

By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Sep 17, 2014


Un-Science or Non-Science?

An uncertain future for global farming under climate change, study shows

By Robert McSweeney, Carbon Brief, Sep 17, 2014


Link to paper: Global Agricultural Land Resources – A High Resolution Suitability Evaluation and Its Perspectives until 2100 under Climate Change Conditions

By Zabel, Putzenlechner, and Mauser, PLOS One, Sep 17, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Contrary to assertions in the article, there is no basis to assume that with global warming much of Africa will have less cropland and fewer harvests per year. As noted by the satellite data, the warming is occurring outside of the tropics.]

Flooding from storm surge would threaten D.C. infrastructure, report says

By Lori Montgomery, WP, Sep 16, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


And last year, a Maryland commission recommended adopting an official forecast of two feet of sea-level rise by 2050 — at the high end of the scientific spectrum.

[SEPP Comment: The high end of the speculative spectrum would be more appropriate.]

Sierra Club and Sierra Club Foundation Accused of Tax Law Violations

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 17, 2014


Link to report: Bootleggers and Baptists … and Hucksterism: How the Sierra Club and the Sierra Club Foundation Violate Non-Profit Law

By David Schnare, E&E Legal, Sep 2014


[SEPP Comment: How did they find their prey when the CO2 concentration was some 10 times that of today?]

Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate, or be Vague?

Climate action won’t break the bank, report says

By Laura Barron-Lopez, The Hill, Sep 16, 2014


The New Climate Economy is the flagship project of the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate. Chaired by former Mexican President Felipe Calderón, and co-chaired by renowned economist Lord Nicholas Stern, the Commission comprises 24 leaders from 19 countries, and is led by a core team under Programme Director Jeremy Oppenheim.

Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.

Debunking the Holocene ‘Sixth Mass Extinction’: 250,000 years from now at current rate

By Staff Writer, The Hockey Schtick, Sep 18, 2014


And then they came for The Holocene: New paper suggests “removing the Holocene Epoch from the geologic timescale”

By Staff Writer, Hockey Schtick, Sep 15, 2014


Claim: Global shift away from cars saves US$100 trillion, eliminates 1,700 MT of CO2 pollution

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 17, 2014


By Timothy Cama, The Hill, Sep 16, 2014


Link to report: Flammable Planet: Wildfires and the Social Cost of Carbon

By Peter Howard, The Cost of Carbon Project, Sep 2014


[SEPP Comment: A joint report endorsed by the Environmental Defense Fund, Institute for Policy Integrity and the National Resources Defense Council. Falsely claims a scientific consensus. Claims the three Integrated Assessment Models – DICE, FUND and PAGE – do not account for the costs of wildfires caused by climate change. Wildfires are declining!]

Ian Stirling now says the polar bear that “died of climate change” last year was “in his prime”

By Susan Crockford, Polar Bear Science, Sep 18, 2014


Unbelievable but true: Political science Phd and former Greenpeace activist tailors Wikipedia climate entries to suit IPCC line

By Sebastian Lüning and Fritz Vahrenholt, Trans. P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Sep 19, 2014


Communicating Better to the Public – Go Personal.

Budget Chief: Denying Climate Change ‘Makes You a Member of the Flat Earth Society’

By Penny Starr, CNS News, Sep 19, 2014


[SEPP Comment: The director of the Office of Management and Budget admits that budget items are scored based on imaginary numbers – influence on global warming/climate change.]

Communicating Better to the Public – Use Propaganda on Children

Curtain, reviews come down on taxpayer-funded climate change musical

By Perry Chiaramonte, Fox News, Sep 17, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Questioning European Green

The climate: biggest loser of the new Commission?

By Staff Writers, EurActiv, Sep 13, 2014 [H/t GWPF]


[SEPP Comment: How can the climate lose?]

German Green Energy Policies Making Electricity a Luxury Good

By Thomas Lifson, American Thinker, Sep 13, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Questioning Green Elsewhere

Is it “Moral” to Restrict Fossil Fuel Use to Mitigate Future Sea Level Rise?

By Patrick J. Michaels & Paul C. “Chip” Knappenberger, CATO, Sep 16, 2014


Greens v. the poor: It’s a movement of the ‘haves’

By Naomi Schaefer Riley, New York Post, Sep 17, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Voters Care About Jobs, Economy, Not Green Agenda

Editorial, IBD, Sep 16, 2014


Funding Issues

Green aid test for U.N. climate summit as poor seek $15 bln

By Alister Doyle, Reuters, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t GWPF}


Richard Branson failed to deliver on $3bn climate change pledge

New book by Naomi Klein claims that Virgin founder gave less than a tenth of cash promised to develop low carbon fuel

Naomi Klein: the hypocrisy behind the big business climate change battle

By Suzanne Goldenberg, Guardian, Sep 13, 2014 [H/t WUWT]


[SEPP Comment: The hypocrisy is big government claiming it is fighting global warming/climate change.]

Rich philanthropists urged to invest in ‘saving civilisation’ by putting money into fighting global warming instead of other green causes

By Tom Bawden, Independent, UK, Sep 15, 2014 [H/t Bishop Hill]


[SEPP Comment: Saving Civilization!! By destroying affordable electricity that is critical for modern civilization?]

The Political Games Continue

Bobby Jindal: How the ‘Radical Left’ Uses Energy Costs to Control Americans

By Kelsey Harkness, The Daily Signal, Sep 17, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Bobby Jindal Blasts Obama Energy Team As ‘Science Deniers’

As a possible prelude to a presidential run, the Louisiana governor turns the tables on Democrats

By Lincoln Mitchell, New York Observer, Sep 16, 2014


Democrats try to balance environmental and business interests in Virginia

By Jenna Portnoy, Washington Post, Sep 13, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


[SEPP Comment: Promoting global warming/climate change fear and profiting from it.]

Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes

Why British Columbia’s Carbon Tax Is Not applicable to America

By Marlo Lewis, CEI, Sep 16, 2014


[SEPP Comment: A Trojan horse for more taxes.]

EPA and other Regulators on the March

No joke: Emails show ‘collusion’ between Obama’s EPA, environmental lobby

Report uses open records laws to force transparency on secretive agency

By Stephen Dinan, Washington Times, Sep 15, 2014


EPA Doubles Number of Coal Plant Closings

By Chriss Street, Breitbart, Sep 16, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


EPA: Malfunctions Will No Longer Shield Plants from Emissions Penalties

By Sonal Patel, Power, Sep 17, 2014


EPA to Regulate CO2 Emissions from Aircraft

By Marlo Lewis, Global Warming.org, Sep 16, 2014


EPA extends climate rule comment period

By Laura Barron-Lopez, The Hill, Sep 16, 2014


Ninety Percent of EPA Stimulus Funding for Diesel Reduction Program Misspent

IG: ‘Significant financial management issues’

By Elizabeth Harrington, Washington Free Beacon, Sep 17, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Energy Issues – Non-US

MP Iulian Iancu: Russia funds demonstrations against shale gas in Europe

By Staff Writer, Romanian Business News, Sep 19, 2014 [H/t GWPF]


The Risks to UK Electricity Supplies

By Staff Writers, GWPF, Sep 16, 2014


Decarbonization Equals Lower Economic Growth

By Sierra Rayne, American Thinker, Sep 12, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Businesses go solar to save millions

By Staff Writers, Canberra, Australia (SPX), Sep 16, 2014


[SEPP Comment: The question that remains to be answered is: what is the overall burden on the reliable producers of electricity and on the economy in general?]

China Bans Use of Coal With High Ash or Sulfur to Fight Smog

By Sarah Chen and Jing Yang, Bloomberg, Sep 16, 2014


Exxon Said to Halt Arctic Oil Well Drilling on Sanctions

By Alan Kat, et al. Bloomberg. Sep 19, 2014


Energy Issues — US

Think nationally, act regionally to advance potential of shale gas

By Deborah Stine and Andrew Gellman, The Hill, Sep 17, 2014


Link to Department of Energy’s Quadrennial Energy Review (QER),

By Staff Writers, DOE, No Date


[SEPP Comment: Public comment period ends Oct 10, 2014

U.S. Shale Revolution Supplanting Saudi, West African Oil Imports, IEA Finds

By Charlie Passut, NGI Shale Daily, Sep 16, 2014 [H.t GWPF]


Update on Agencies’ Monitoring Efforts and Coal-Fueled Generating Unit Retirements

By Staff Writers, GAO, Sep 15, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


About 13 percent of coal-fueled generating capacity—42,192 megawatts (MW)—has either been retired since 2012 or is planned for retirement by 2025

[SEPP Comment: Most of it in the next few years.]

Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?

Water pollution not from fracking, it seems — neither are “health” effects

By Staff Writers, ACSH, Sep 16, 2014


Dixon of crock green

By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Sep 15, 2014


Link to paper: Proximity to Natural Gas Wells and Reported Health Status: Results of a Household Survey in Washington County, Pennsylvania

By Rabinowitz et al. Environmental Health Perspectives, Sep 10, 2014


Conclusions: The results of this study suggest that natural gas drilling activities could be associated with increased reports of dermal and upper respiratory symptoms in nearby communities and support the need for further research into health effects of natural gas extraction activities.

[SEPP Comment: The part on health effects is speculative.]

Stanford publishes a report on the balanced use of fracking

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 13, 2014


Glut of Oil Takes the Wind Out of Green

By Irwin Stelzer, Sunday Times, Via GWPF, Sep 14, 2014


Return of King Coal?

Asia Doubles Down on Coal

By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Sep 19, 2014


Oil Spills, Gas Leaks & Consequences

Gas leaks from faulty wells linked to contamination in some groundwater

By Staff Writers, Columbus OH (SPX), Sep 18, 2014


Link to paper: Noble gases identify the mechanisms of fugitive gas contamination in drinking-water wells overlying the Marcellus and Barnett Shales

By Darrah, et al. PNAS, Sep 15, 2014


Study Says Faulty Drilling Wells, Not Fracking, Tainted Drinking Water

By John Murawski, Governing, Sep 16, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


Nuclear Energy and Fears

Ditch the jargon

To attract financial institutions to new build projects, the nuclear power industry needs to avoid ‘nuke-speak’ and learn to talk like a banker, writes George Borovas.

By George Borvas, WNN, Sep 12, 2014


[SEPP Comment: Some of the suggestions apply to other professions as well.]

Nuclear’s ‘key role’ in meeting climate change challenge

By Staff Writers, WNN, Sep 11, 2014


Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Solar and Wind

Calling a bluff

By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Sep 18, 2014


Sun and Wind Alter Global Landscape, Leaving Utilities Behind

By Justin Gillis, NYT, Sep 13, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]


[SEPP Comment: Clueless. No understanding of the costs of power interruptions to a modern society or the burden solar and wind place on existing, reliable utilities. The financiers love the subsidies – until they stop.]

Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other

Chevron’s Search for Alternative Fuels Stumps Best Minds

By Joe Carroll, Bloomberg, Sep 16, 2014 [H/t Cooler Heads]


[Chevron CEO] Watson also said Chevron is close to recycling 100 percent of the fracking water and brine involved in drilling wells in the Marcellus Shale formation beneath Pennsylvania and neighboring Northeast states.

Feds invest in biofuels for the Navy

By Timothy Cama, The Hill, Sep 19, 2014


[SEPP Comment: The enormous growth of oil and gas from shale did not need $750 million in government loan guarantees for plants and $320 million in government research on feedstocks. This “investment” addresses no real need and it is doubtful if it will produce a return.]

California Dreaming

Bipartisanship helps make California a world leader in fighting climate change

By Gene Beley, Central Valley Business Times, (Calf.) Sep 14, 2014 [H/t Dennis Ambler]


[SEPP Comment: Once California outpaced the nation in economic performance, now it outpaces the nation in unnecessary environmental regulations.]

Environmental Industry

Sierra Club and Sierra Club Foundation Accused of Tax Law Violations

By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Sep 17, 2014


Link to report: Bootleggers and Baptists … and Hucksterism: How the Sierra Club and the Sierra Club Foundation Violate Non-Profit Law

By David Schnare, E&E Legal, Sep 2014


More Dubious Eco Laureates

By Donna Laframboise, NFC, Sep 18, 2014


Other News that May Be of Interest

Prosecute scientific misconduct

By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Sep 16, 2014


Link to article: It’s time to criminalise serious scientific misconduct

By Rachel Nuwer, New Scientist, Sep 15, 2014


[SEPP Comment: A big issue is intent.]

Weather, Climate, Arctic Ice And The Franklin Expedition

By Tim Ball, WUWT, Sep 15, 2014


Bill Gates’ ‘Big History Project’ Teaches Kids Climate Change and Population Stagnation

By Sandra Stotsky, CNS News, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]




New paper: Dubious claims about California ocean habitat derived from tree-rings

By Staff Writer, Hockey Schtick, Sep 19, 2014


Link to paper: Six centuries of variability and extremes in a coupled marine-terrestrial ecosystem

By Black, et al. Science, Sep 19, 2014


Secretary of State John Kerry Explains the Greenhouse Effect

By Myron Ebell, Global Warming.org, Sep 16, 2014


Newest Climate Change Danger: GIANT SPIDERS

By Eric Owens, Daily Caller, Sep 18, 2014 [H/t Timothy Wise]




12 thoughts on “Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #150

  1. Hurray for carbon tax !! Don’t blame me when they are sitting around in a freezing house or apartment. And if it gets really cold, I wonder how many of them will realize that they’ve been lied to. You can’t blame me when I’m on the beach next to AL eating steak and lobster while they are freezing to death, I’ve been fighting this for the last 12 years at least. I have to see who the climate refugees are. The ones moving south to get away from bitter cold or the ones displaced from rising sea levels. The first thing I’m going to do tomorrow is buy gas, oil, and coal stocks. ( It’s counter intuitive) The tax will get passed along and prices will remain high from lower usage. I also wonder how long it will take before people start demanding coal or gas fired plants be opened when they start getting cold.

  2. Please make TOAS the preferred abbreviation for The Open Atmospheric Society.
    Google “OAS”; it will forever be the Organization of American States.
    Google “TOAS” and it is a wide open field.

    • “Please make TOAS the preferred abbreviation for The Open Atmospheric Society.
      Google “OAS”; it will forever be the Organization of American States.
      Google “TOAS” and it is a wide open field.”

      I agree. But you should have added, “Attn. Anthony”.

      • Think of a way of adding a T to that acronym and you’d have a really memorable name. Suggestions on a postcard to….

    • Hmmm…

      http://theoas.org/ begins by saying:

      Welcome to The Open Atmospheric Society, known as “The OAS”.

      “The” is definitely part of the name of the organization.

      Using Bing “The OAS” shows the Organization of American States at the top of the list with The Open Atmospheric Society second!

      Google, on the other hand, doesn’t show The Open Atmospheric Society on the first few pages!?

      Although google “The Open Atmospheric Society” and google does find it.

  3. 22 Sept: Australian: Ben Webster (The Times): World’s ‘carbon budget’ to be exhausted in 30 years, say climate scientists
    Professor Forster said the rate of global warming could “rebound” from the apparent pause since the 1990s, meaning the increase over the next decade could be even larger than 0.4C.
    Scientists have tried to explain the pause by suggesting that the oceans have temporarily absorbed some of the heat.
    “If the world doesn’t warm as we expect, we climate scientists may have serious egg on our face. I would prefer that to be the case; but I fear the climate scientists may be right,” Professor Forster said.
    The study said global CO2 emissions had been rising by 2.5 per cent a year in the past decade. It concluded: “Stabilisation of global temperature rise at any level requires global carbon emissions to become eventually virtually zero.”…

  4. ‘UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has appointed Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio as a UN representative on climate change. DiCaprio may be best known as the lead actor in the movie Titanic.’

    Perhaps more appropriately, he also starred in Catch me if you can in which he played conman Frank Abagnale.

  5. BBC Radio4, Thought for the Day (22nd September 2014 7:45am – not on I Player yet) was interesting from a “religion and AGW” viewpoint.

    The speaker made it clear that he thought:
    -The Climate Marches were good.
    -Anyone who opposes immediate action on climate change is wicked.
    -That religion is part of the answer.
    -That the root of environmental problems is Christianity.

    They didn’t say what faith the speaker had but I’m fairly sure it’s not mine.

  6. Alternative Energy: Should other nations follow Germany’s lead on promoting solar power?
    Oct. 2013. Ryan Carlyle, BSChE, Subsea Hydraulics Engineer

    Referenced by Bjørn Lomborg on Facebook

    Solar power itself is a good thing, but Germany’s pro-renewables policy has been a disaster. It has the absurd distinction of completing the trifecta of bad energy policy:
    1.Bad for consumers
    2.Bad for producers
    3.Bad for the environment (yes, really; I’ll explain)
    [lots of good charts]
    Issue 1: Wrong place, wrong tech to start the green revolution
    – Germany worst place in industrial world for solar. Worse than rainy Seattle.
    Issue 2: Supply Variability
    – The wind always blows somewhere, but all solar depends upon daylight.
    Issue 3: Displacing the wrong kinds of power.
    – Less Nuclear, more coal.
    Issue 4: The kicker: The category for “biomass” power you see in all these charts is actually firewood being burned in coal plants

    The category for “biomass” power you see in all these charts is actually firewood being burned in coal plants. 38% of Germany’s “renewable energy” comes from chopping down forests and importing wood from other countries. [28] Effing firewood, like we’re back in the Middle Ages or something. Due to overzealous renewables targets, and a quirk in the EU carbon pricing system that considers firewood carbon-neutral, Europe is chopping down forests at an alarming rate to burn them as “renewable biomass.”

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