The Week That Was: 2015-12-05 (December 5, 2015) Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org) The Science and Environmental Policy Project
THIS WEEK: By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
COP-21: The festive part of the Conference of Parties (COP-21) of the United Nations’ Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), is over in Paris. This part began COP-21, giving various national politicians the opportunity to preen for the cameras as if they are celebrities. After all, some claim they are attending the conference in order to save the world from global warming/climate change. Who knows, some may actually believe it.
Now comes the hard part. The delegates to COP-21 must work out an agreement that, at least, gives the appearance they are saving the world. Of course, COP-21, and the UNFCCC, follows the party line laid out in the Fifth Assessment Report (AR-5, 2013 & 2014) by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Humans are mostly (more than 50%) responsible for 95 to 99% of global warming/climate change since about 1950. As stated in last week’s TWTW (November 28, 2015), this is a scientific hypothesis that must be tested. It has not been tested. Instead, the needed testing has been replaced by a cloud of assertions, some scientifically very good, some extremely poor, from which no one can logically draw firm conclusions with a 95 to 99% certainty. Simply, there is no scientific reason to accept severe limitations on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, as envisioned by many parties at COP-21.
Further, as discussed in last week’s TWTW, the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) released a report that contradicts many of the claims by the IPCC, including:
“Probably the only “consensus” among climate scientists is that human activities can have an effect on local climate and that the sum of such local effects could hypothetically rise to the level of an observable global signal. The key questions to be answered, however, are whether the human global signal is large enough to be measured and if it is, does it represent, or is it likely to become, a dangerous change outside the range of natural variability? On these questions, an energetic scientific debate is taking place on the pages of peer-reviewed science journals.
“In contradiction of the scientific method, IPCC assumes its implicit hypothesis – that dangerous global warming is resulting, or will result, from human-related greenhouse gas emissions — is correct and that its only duty is to collect evidence and make plausible arguments in the hypothesis’s favor. It simply ignores the alternative and null hypothesis, amply supported by empirical research, that currently observed changes in global climate indices and the physical environment are the result of natural variability.
“The results of the global climate models (GCMs) relied on by IPCC are only as reliable as the data and theories “fed” into them. Most climate scientists agree those data are seriously deficient and IPCC’s estimate for climate sensitivity to CO2 is too high.”
In short, the science presented by the IPCC is inadequate to justify curtailing the use of fossil fuels, which produce CO2. Fossil fuels are critical for economic growth and are used to generate needed reliable electricity, the hallmark of modern civilization. Nuclear is an option, but is opposed by many of the same groups that oppose fossil fuels. The same with hydroelectric power, where it can be used. Geothermal can be used only in specialized regions, such as Iceland. Finally, solar and wind are unreliable, without commercial-scale, affordable back-up, which is yet to be developed, except for pumped storage in specific locations. As some villagers in India said, they want real electricity, not fake electricity, from solar.
At this time, it appears that any agreement requires massive annual payments to developing countries, called the Green Climate Fund. The estimated amount is $100 Billion per year. No doubt, many UN leaders would like to see such a fund for the fees and other mechanisms they can use to divert some of the revenue for their own uses. UN leaders have long rankled about the need to rely on donations from member countries.
At this time, there appears to be four major stumbling blocks to such an arrangement: China, India, Russia, and the US Senate. See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy – NIPCC and On to Paris.
Quote of the Week: “There is perhaps no field aspiring to be scientific where flagrant personal bias, logic martyred in the cause of supporting a prejudice, unfounded assertions, and even sentimental rot and drivel, have run riot to such an extent as here.” Helen Thompson Woolley In a review of research on the psychological differences between men and women — 1910
Number of the Week: 17 years
China: In a report published by the Global Warming Policy Foundation, veteran China watcher and environmentalist, Patricia Adams explains why the leadership of China cannot agree to control carbon dioxide emissions – if they tried, they would face a revolution. The public has become accustomed to the increasing incomes and prosperity that have come with the spectacular economic growth of the country. All a result of increased use of fossil fuels.
Many western reporters talk about pollution in China, but, apparently, they are so misled by the poor definitions of pollution by anti-fossil fuel groups, including the US EPA, that they fail to distinguish between health threatening pollution and carbon dioxide, which is essential for life on this planet. No ordinary concentrations of carbon dioxide are a threat to human health, even many times ordinary levels. There are special circumstances when extremely high concentrations of carbon dioxide caused oxygen deprivation, but these are isolated incidences.
For China, air pollution means real health threats such as nitrogen and sulphur oxides, not imaginary threats from un-validated computer models of future climate change used by the EPA and western reporters. For the delegates from China, it is better to experience the disappointment by some other government delegates than a revolution at home. See links under Problems in the Orthodoxy.
India: Local newspapers have long reported that leaders of India insist the Green Climate Fund be in place or at least guaranteed by developed countries – western promises will not do. Further, leaders of India are less than impressed by the science presented by the IPCC. In its Fourth Assessment Report (AR-4, 2007) the IPCC claimed the snow and ice on the Himalayas will be gone by about 2035. The then leader of the IPCC, Rajendra Pachauri, arrogantly dismissed a carefully researched, contradicting study by one of the foremost experts in the field. Such affronts are not easily forgotten. There is little empirical support for the findings on the Himalayas in AR-4.
The leaders of India recognize the benefits of economic growth and prosperity driven by use of fossil fuels. It would take a great deal to persuade them otherwise. See links under On to Paris! and Problems in the Orthodoxy.
Russia: Tim Ball was a student of Herbert H. Lamb, the pioneer of modern climate science. Also, Ball had the opportunity to work with climate scientists from the Soviet Union. According to Ball, Russian scientists are well based on the cyclical nature of climate change and question the IPCC. In a post, Ball quotes German Physicist and meteorologist Klaus-Eckart Plus who states:
“Ten years ago I simply parroted what the IPCC told us. One day I started checking the facts and data—first I started with a sense of doubt but then I became outraged when I discovered that much of what the IPCC and the media were telling us was sheer nonsense and was not even supported by any scientific facts and measurements. To this day I still feel shame that as a scientist I made presentations of their science without first checking it.” “Scientifically it is sheer absurdity to think we can get a nice climate by turning a CO2 adjustment knob.”
Ball goes on to say:
“Russian scientists know what the IPCC said. Because of them Putin knows that the climate science of the IPCC is wrong. He knows it because Soviet and now Russian climatologists practice open science, which is ironic in a political system that is supposed to be controlling. He also knows the IPCC is designed to use climate for political goals because he does it better than most. As they say, it takes a thief to catch a thief. How much money will Putin contribute to the Green Climate Fund?”
This brings up the critical point: What will it take to get Russia to sign on? What will the Western delegates offer Putin? See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy
For a scientific paper from Russia, see: Science: Is the Sun Rising?
US Senate: The Majority Staff of US Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works released a white paper “to provide the American people the truth about the state of international climate negotiations and the full impacts of President Obama’s approach.” Among the key findings are:
· Congress has a history of opposing international agreements, etc. targeting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that undermine the welfare of the American people and the economy.
· The President has unilaterally pursued radical environmental policies to “decarbonize” the US economy, rather work than with Congress.
· The Administration’s pledge to reduce GHG emissions is unlikely to be implemented.
· The Administrations pledge to the Green Climate Fund is not supported by Congress.
· The Senate must be able to exercise its constitutional role to approve any agreement setting targets or timetables emerging from COP-21. Anything else is little more than a press release.
· The Administration’s claimed victory at COP-21 is based on mere promises.
In short, even if there is an agreement at COP-21, anything binding will be subject to a significant political fight.
The President has largely ignored or demeaned Congress for its role of approving foreign policy and energy policy. Any requests for approval of a treaty or other agreement arising from COP-21 is likely to be viewed sternly. See links under On to Paris!
Political Polls: In general, TWTW does not consider political polls reliable. All too often, the results are manipulated by the organizers. Examples include the three polls reviewed by TWTW that reported that 97% of scientists agree… These polls more reflected the views of the organizers rather than the views of the purported subjects.
Exceptions occur with organizations that repeat the polling process consistently. From 1958 to 2015, the Pew Research Center has taken polls to estimate public trust in government. It finds that “Public trust in the government remains near historic lows. Only 19% of Americans today say they can trust the government in Washington to do what is right “just about always” (3%) or “most of the time” (16%).” In general, the Obama Administration has polled below that of any prior administration since the poll began in the Eisenhower Administration (with a low of 73%).
The traditional press may write very favorable stories about his administration, but the public is far from impressed. A political fight between Congress and the Administration may prove to be discomforting to supporters of the administration. See links under Communicating Better to the Public – Do a Poll?
Changing Antarctic: With his great tenacity, Steve McIntire is digging into the morass of Antarctic ice melt. There is significant disagreement among the experts, which McIntire duly notes. Ice is melting in the smaller West Antarctic Ice Sheet (including the Antarctic Peninsula), and is gaining in most of East Antarctica, about 80% of the area. For years, ice loss on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and Antarctic Peninsula have been noted, whatever the cause, which may be from geothermal warming below the ice sheet, with little or no human influence.
The main issues are: 1) is the net an increase or decrease in ice and 2) is there a discernable human cause? McIntyre’s post is long and technical, needing familiarity with concepts such as GIS, geographic information systems which helps visualize, analyze, and interpret data to understand relationships, patterns, and trends, and GIA, glacial isostatic adjustment, which accounts for the earth’s mantle recovering from the weight of glacial ice during the last ice age. It is too early to draw any general conclusions, except to say that the alarmist view of rapidly melting ice accompanied by drastic sea level rise gets most of the attention in the media, while the view that nothing new is happening gets little attention. SEPP considers the latter the null hypothesis, and any other hypothesis must be tested.
McIntire observed that going from AR-4 to AR-5, the IPCC dropped any significant discussion of the Holocene, the period of warming since the end of the last ice age, over 10,000 years ago. The UN’s science ignores the most recent 10,000 years of climate history, yet the UN expects humanity to restrict the use of fossil fuels based on its science? See links under Changing Cryosphere.
Number of the Week: 17 years. According to a report from the Congressional Budget Office, the Department of Energy is 17 years behind schedule “in its contractual obligations to remove and dispose of civilian nuclear waste, and it has already incurred significant liabilities for damages related to its partial breach of contracts with electric utilities.2 The federal government has already paid $5.3 billion in damages to electric utilities, and DOE estimates that its remaining liabilities will total $23.7 billion if legislation and sufficient appropriations are enacted that will enable it to begin to accept waste within the next 10 years. However, if the department’s schedule is further delayed, the anticipated costs—which will be borne by taxpayers through spending from the Department of the Treasury’s Judgment Fund—will climb.”
Yet, this Administration and its Department of Energy are most anxious that humanity curtail its use of fossil fuels immediately.
ARTICLES: The Articles section is now at the bottom of TWTW.
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All four of the voluminous NIPCC reports and their Summaries are available at www.NIPCCreport.org.
The newly released 2015 report “Why Scientists Disagree About Global Warming” directly addresses the sources of disagreement among climate scientists, and that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a political body that does not perform rigorous hypothesis testing needed to advance scientific knowledge.
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Kenneth Haapala, President
Science and Environmental Policy Project
NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Science: Is the Sun Rising?
The Sun Defines Climate
By Habibullo Abdussamatov, Dr. Sc. Nauki I Zhizn, (Science and Life) 2009 Trans. Lucy Hancock, [H/t Climate Etc.]
Suppressing Scientific Inquiry
Unearthing America’s Deep Network of Climate Change Deniers
A new study attempts the first tally of those driving the peculiarly American strain of climate change denial.
By Eric Roston, Bloomberg, Nov 30, 2015
Link to paper: Network structure and influence of the climate change counter-movement
By Justin Farrell, Nature Climate Change, Nov 30, 2015
Link to second paper: Corporate funding and ideological polarization about climate change
By Justin Farrell, PNAS, Nov 23, 2015
Based on: “comprehensive social network made up of 4,556 individuals with ties to 164 organizations”—including think tanks, trade associations, and other groups—involved in “promulgating contrarian views.”
[SEPP Comment: The article and the paper fail to stipulate amounts of money but the abstract states: “The comprehensive data include all individual and organizational actors in the climate change countermovement (164 organizations), as well as all written and verbal texts produced by this network between 1993–2013 (40,785 texts, more than 39 million words).” No mention of funding of “polarizing” green groups or the billions of dollars the US government uses to financing questionable political advocacy. The work covers 1993 to 2013, a period in which government reports estimate the US government spent over $40 Billion on what the reports classify as climate science.]
Suppressing Scientific Inquiry – The Witch Hunt
For their second act, Keystone killers tackle Exxon
Green groups aim to make Exxon face consequences for, they say, obscuring the risks of climate change.
By Elana Schor, Politico, Nov 28, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
[SEPP Comment: It will be interesting if there is major collusion between the attorney general of New York and green groups. Such relationships are coming to the fore with EPA, recognizing it is a politicized organization.]
Suppressing Scientific Inquiry – The Witch Hunt – Push-Back
France’s Top Weatherman Hired By Kremlin After Being Fired For Questioning Global Warming
By Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, Dec 1, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
Challenging the Orthodoxy — NIPCC
Why Scientists Disagree About Global Warming
The NIPCC Report on the Scientific Consensus
By Craig D. Idso, Robert M. Carter, and S. Fred Singer, NIPCC, Nov 23, 2015
Download with no charge
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Physical Science
Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, 2013
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Biological Impacts
Idso, Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, 2014
Challenging the Orthodoxy
Vladimir Putin; Climate and Political Realist?
By Tim Ball, A Different Perspective, Nov 30, 2015
2015 will be the 3rd Warmest Year in the Satellite Record
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Dec 3, 2015
Antarctic Ice Mass Controversies
By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, Dec 2, 2015
“However, it still seems like one of those too typical situations where the less alarming explanation is presented in specialist literature, but left unmentioned or unconfronted when retreat of West Antarctic glaciers is presented as a cause of alarm.”
Fostering a climate of intolerance
Editorial by Joel Kotkin, Orange County Register, Nov 29, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
When even science, the supposed lodestone of rational discourse, is politicized, we may be surrendering some of the core values that have distinguished Western civilization from others.
How sensitive is global temperature to cumulative CO2 emissions?
By Nic Lewis, Climate Etc. Nov 30, 2015
Obama Is Correct, Climate Change Is Biggest Threat, But Only Because Official IPCC Climate Science Is Completely Wrong
Guest opinion: Dr. Tim Ball, WUWT, Nov 30, 2015
How a rebellious scientist uncovered the surprising truth about stereotypes
By Claire Lehmann, Quillette, Dec 4, 2015
“The paper argued that those who believed that the moon landing was a hoax also believed that climate science was a fraud.” [Lead author Stephan Lewandowsky]
“His [Lee Jussim’s] fellow psychologists shifted in their seats. Jussim pointed out that the level of obfuscation the authors went to, in order to disguise their actual data, was intense. Statistical techniques appeared to have been chosen that would hide the study’s true results. And it appeared that no peer reviewers, or journal editors, took the time, or went to the effort of scrutinizing the study in a way that was sufficient to identify the bold misrepresentations.”
Defending the Orthodoxy
Bill Press: Climate change is real
By Bill Press, The Hill, Nov 30, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
[SEPP Comment: Attacking the “straw man.”
Why not a war on global warming?
By Wade Davis, Globe and Mail, Dec 2, 2015 [H/t WUWT]
[SEPP Comment: Whom do we bomb?]
Paris climate summit could bring historic deal on emissions, but likely won’t halt climate change
By William Yardley and Alexandra Zavis, LA Times, Nov 29, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
[SEPP Comment: The assumption in the headline reflects the hysteria. The belief that politicians can stop climate change by stopping CO2 emissions.]
Questioning the Orthodoxy
Clowns on parade
By Charles Battig, American Thinker, Dec 3, 2015
COP21: Carbon Regulation without Representation
By Jeffrey Folks, American Thinker, Dec 3, 2015
The Greatest Scientific Fraud Of All Time — Part IX
By Francis Menton, Manhattan Contrarian, Dec 1, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
World’s richest 10 percent produce half of CO2, report says
By Staff Writers, AFP, Dec 1, 2015
[SEPP Comment: No doubt they are well-represented in Paris.]
Going Forward Realistically on Climate Studies (Now Includes October Data)
Guest Post by Leo Smith, Gary Pearse and Werner Brozek, Edited by Just The Facts, WUWT, Nov 30, 2015
Global Cooling: Do Not Forget (false alarm was tied to coal burning too)
By Robert Bradley Jr. Master Resource, Dec 3, 2015
The China – US Agreement?
New Report: The Truth About China
By Staff Writer, GWPF, Dec 2, 2015
Link to report: The Truth About China: Why Beijing will resist demands for abatement
By Patricia Adams, Global Warming Policy Foundation, 2015
On to Paris!
Senate EPW White Paper: Essential Background on the Obama Administration’s Climate Treaty Agenda
By Marlo Lewis, CEI, Dec 2, 2015
Link to White Paper: Forecast For COP-21: Senate Predicts Obama Climate Promises to Come Up Short Again, Majority Staff, Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, Dec 1, 2015
US confidential note to select countries sets the terms for talks
US wants differentiation between developed and developing countries scrapped
By Nitin Sethi, Business Standard, India, Nov 29, 2015
Green Energy Investors Look to Cash in on Paris Talks
Coalition of executives and financiers seeks government subsidies as U.N. climate talks commence
By Lachlan Markay, Washington Free Beacon, Dec 1, 2015
India Decries the West’s “Carbon Imperialism”
By Staff Writers, The American Interest, Dec 3, 2015
ISIS Not the Greatest Threat for Obama
By Larry Bell, Newsmax, Nov 30, 2015
Selecting an Objective, Determines Priorities
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Dec 1, 2015
[SEPP Comment: What is the objective?]
The Real Reason for the Paris Global Warming Talks #COP21
By William Briggs, The Stream, Dec 1, 2015
The Administration’s Plan – Push-Back
The Misplaced Priorities of the Obama Administration
By Alan Carlin, Carlin Economics and Science, Dec 4, 2015
Obama Apologizing to the World for US on Climate Is Ridiculous
By Nicolas Loris, Daily Signal, Nov 30, 2015
Obama Should Be Bragging, Not Apologizing, About U.S. Record On Greenhouse Gases
Editorial, IBD, Dec 1, 2015
Problems in the Orthodoxy
New Report: The Truth About China
By Staff Writer, GWPF, Dec 2, 2015
Link to report: The Truth About China: Why Beijing will resist demands for abatement
By Patricia Adams, Global Warming Policy Foundation, 2015
China’s Climate Power Game
By Patricia Adams, Financial Post, Dec 2, 2015
Paris climate talks: Through the smog, coal-hungry India sees ‘carbon imperialism’ in the West
As Delhi rushes to boost its coal generation to satisfy rocketing energy demands, John Kerry’s decision to single out India as a “challenge” provokes fury
By Andrew Marszal, Telegraph, UK, New Delhi, Nov 28, 2015 [H/t GWPF]
Spiegel Reports India Adamant: “Economic Development Before Climate Protection” …To Triple CO2 Emissions By 2030!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Dec 4, 2015
Slow pace of talks leads to scepticism about Paris climate summit
By Chetan Chauhan, Hindustan Times, Dec 3, 2015 [H/t GWPF]
Bill Gates and the strings he attaches
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Nov 30, 2015
FAZ Commentary Warns Of “Growing Impatience” Among Democracy-Hostile Scientists “Intoxicated by Knowledge”
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Dec 3, 2015
Funding row ‘threatens Paris climate deal’, India and China warn
Developing nations including India and China issue strongly-worded statement attacking rich nations over funding
By Emily Gosden, Telegraph, UK, Dec 2, 2015 [H/t GWPF]
Nations most at risk of climate change urge lower warming cap
By Megan Rowling, Reuters, Nov 30, 2015
James Hansen on the Coming Paris Fail (Kyoto II)
By Robert Bradley Jr. Master Resource, Nov 30, 2015
“’Big Green consists of several ‘environmental’ organizations, including Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), each with $100+M budgets, each springing from high-minded useful beginnings, each with more high-priced lawyers than you can shake a stick at. EDF … was chief architect of the disastrous Kyoto lemon. NRDC proudly claims credit for Obama’s EPA strategy and foolishly allows it to migrate to Paris.
“’The danger is that Paris will lay a Kyoto.’” James Hansen, “Isolation of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue: Part I,” November 27, 2015.
The ‘red line’ issue that exposes deep divisions in the Paris climate talks
Calls by the US and Australia for tougher requirements on how developing countries’ emissions are reported on and checked have met with fierce resistance
By Lenore Taylor, Guardian, UK, Dec 3, 2015
Third World Kleptocrats Do Paris
By Tony Thomas, Quadrant, Dec 3, 2015
Seeking a Common Ground
A story of the climate change debate. How it ran; why it failed.
By Larry Kummer, from the Fabius Maximus website, WUWT, Dec 2, 2015
“It is not their wrongness so much as their pretensions to rightness that have brought economic predictions and the theory that underlies them into well-deserved contempt.”
— Peter Medawar in The Strange Case of the Spotted Mice: and Other Classic Essays on Science (1981).
[SEPP Comment: Review of presentation by Roger Pielke Jr.]
The Paris Placebo Effect
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Nov 29, 2015
So, as the United Nations declares yet another a landmark agreement to Save the Earth, just remember…sometimes placebos really do work. The danger, though, is that the politicians of the world will be emboldened to manufacture ever greater quantities of placebos, at ever-increasing costs to humanity.
The power of language
By Martin Livermore, The Scientific Alliance, Dec 4, 2015
A royal conversion on the road to Damascus
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Nov 30, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Too bad this past president of the Royal Society did not exemplify his suggestions to the incoming president.]
IPCC ≠ Science (2) A Separation of Powers
Guest essay by Wim Röst, WUWT, Dec 3, 2015
Don’t let climate debate hinder economy: Column
Nature’s deviations disrupt our lives and businesses more than we should accept.
By William Gail, USA Today, Dec 1, 2015 [H/t Climate Etc.]
UAH V6 Global Temperature Update for November 2015: +0.33 deg. C
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Dec 1, 2015
Models v. Observations
The Myth of More Severe Storms
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Dec 4, 2015
Observations are the darnedest things
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 1, 2015
Is That a Forest? That Depends on How You Define It
By Staff Writers, Greenbelt MD (SPX) Nov 27, 2015
Link to paper: Conservation policy and the measurement of forests
By Sexton, et al. Nature Climate Change, Oct 5, 2015
[SEPP Comment: How much tree cover makes a forest?]
Precipitation – steady as she goes
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 4, 2015
Link to paper: Changes in annual precipitation over the Earth’s land mass excluding Antarctica from the 18th century to 2013
By van Wijngaarden and Syed, Journal of Hydrology, Dec 30, 2015
[SEPP Comment: No major trends.]
Below-normal Atlantic hurricane season ends
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 1, 2015
Climate and Human Civilization over the last 18,000 years
Guest essay by Andy May, WUWT, Nov 29, 2015
“Correlation is not causation, but many, if not all, of man’s worst times since the last glacial maximum occur during colder and dryer periods… More importantly, I was unable to find evidence of a crisis that was due to warming.”
Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice
Is Antarctica’s Climate Change Natural or CO2 Driven? There Is Absolutely No Consensus
Guest essay by Jim Steele, Director emeritus Sierra Nevada Field Campus, San Francisco State University, WUWT, Dec 3, 2015
Polar bear habit update – day 333 Arctic sea ice hits 11.1 mkm2
By Susan Crockford, Polar Bear Science, Dec 1, 2015
Phytoplankton love carbon dioxide
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 1, 2015
Link to paper: Multidecadal increase in North Atlantic coccolithophores and the potential role of rising CO2
By Rivero-Calle, et al., Science, Nov 26, 2015
Un-Science or Non-Science?
How crop prices and climate variables affect yield and acreage
By Staff Writers, Urbana IL (SPX), Nov 24, 2015
“The study also looked at climate variables, both for the 30-year period and in predictions for what temperature and precipitation will be in the years 2040 to 2050 and in the longer range to 2080.”
USGS projects large loss of Alaska permafrost by 2100
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 1, 2015
When Scientists Still Did Science
By Tony Thomas, Quadrant, Dec 4, 2015
Explaining Extreme Events of 2014 from a Climate Perspective
By Stephanie Herring, Martin Hoerling, James Kossin, Thomas Peterson, and Peter Stott, AMS Bulletin, Dec 2015
[SEPP Comment: Explaining is not establishing causation. Overall, 2014 was a rather mild year.]
Quentin Letts’s Diary: An apology to the BBC journos who, thanks to me, are being sent away for re-education
On being a climate-change apostate; Cardinal Roger Harrabin; a ghostly encounter; Keith Vaz; cows
By Quentin Letts, Spectator, UK, Dec 5, 2015 [H/t Bishop Hill]
The Walrus and the New York Times
By John Hinderaker, Power Line, Dec 1, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate, or be Vague?
Climate study finds evidence of global shift in the 1980s
Anthropogenic warming, volcanic eruption sparked biggest change in 1,000 years
By Staff Writers, Science Daily, Nov 24, 2015 [H/t Toshio Fujita]
Link to paper: Global impacts of the 1980s regime shift
By Reid, et al. Global Change Biology, Nov 23, 2015
“Planet Earth experienced a global climate shift in the late 1980s on an unprecedented scale, fuelled by anthropogenic warming and a volcanic eruption, according to new research published this week.” [Boldface Added]
[SEPP Comment: Doubtful the shift approaches the shifts around the Younger Dryas.]
Rich in energy and with vast forests, Russia pays little attention to climate change
By Katherine Jacobsen, AP, Nov 28, 2015
[SEPP Comment: The reporter is clueless. In general, the warming since the 19th century has benefited Russia.]
Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.
Paris Whopper of the Day: The Sahara Is Expanding
By Patrick J. Michaels, Cato, Dec 1, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Contrary to the claims of France’s President.]
Rich nations’ fossil fuel subsidies exceed climate aid 40 to 1: researchers
By Chris Arsenault, Reuters, Dec 3, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Show the data!]
Communicating Better to the Public – Do a Poll?
Great News! Americans Don’t Really Care About Climate Change
By David Harsanyi, The Federalist, Nov 20, 2015[H/t Timothy Wise]
Beyond Distrust: How Americans View Their Government
Broad criticism, but positive performance ratings in many areas
By Staff Writers, Pew Research Center, Nov 23, 2015
Expanding the Orthodoxy – The Pope – Loyal Opposition
Bishops for Mid-Century Decarbonization–Really?
By E. Calvin Beisner, Master Resource, Dec 1, 2015
Questioning European Green
Emission impossible as EU fails to police main anti-pollution scheme
Attempts to stamp out endemic fraud in the EU’s flagship Emissions Trading Scheme are “not adequate”, say auditors
By Andrew Gilligan, Telegraph, UK, Nov 29, 2015 [H/t Paul Homewood]
Developing world needs $1t[Trillion] for climate change
By Staff Writers, Sky News, Dec 1, 2015 [H/t WUWT]
Legal Lunacy: Peruvian Farmer Sues Power Company For CO2 Emitted 10,000 Km Away!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Dec 1, 2015
Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes
Elon Musk – a Robust Carbon Tax would Speed the Clean Energy Transition
Guest essay by Eric Worrall, WUWT, Dec 4, 2015
[SEPP Comment: And a benefit to Elon Musk?]
Subsidies and Mandates Forever
Germany Pays to Halt Danish Wind Power to Protect Own Output
By Jesper Starn and Weixin Zha, Bloomberg, Dec 1, 2015
EPA and other Regulators on the March
EPA cites Paris talks in defending climate rule
By Timothy Cama, The Hill, Dec 4, 2015
Energy Issues – Non-US
Coal plant gets green light to burn American wood pellets
Lynemouth power plant to be resurrected as a biomass plant after it stops burning coal at the end of this year
By Emily Gosden, Telegraph, UK, Dec 1, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Will the new green slogan of independence be: Stop sending our trees to the crown?]
German Energiewende – Modern Miracle or Major Misstep
By Davis Swan, Climate Etc. Dec 2, 2015
Energy Issues — US
Hydro Dammed Up by Regulations
By William Tucker, Real Clear Energy, Dec 4, 2015
For California, gas ‘is the new coal’ as the East Coast embraces the resource
By Robert Walton, Utility Dive, Nov 25, 2015
Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?
The party is over for oil
By Daniel Yergin, CNBC, Dec 1, 2015
Nuclear Energy and Fears
Testimony on the Federal Government’s Responsibilities and Liabilities Under the Nuclear Waste Policy Act
By Staff Writers, CBO, Dec, 3, 2015
Link to Testimony: The Federal Government’s Responsibilities and Liabilities Under the Nuclear Waste Policy Act
By Kim Cawley, CBO, Dec 3, 2015
[SEPP Comment: DOE is only 17 years behind schedule!]
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other
A Biofuel Dream Gone Bad
By Katie Fehrenbacher, Fortune, Dec 15, 2015 [H/t Climate Etc.]
[SEPP Comment: Lengthy article on a speculative venture.]
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Vehicles
The Bargain Mass Transit Option
By Lloyd Bensen, NCPA, Nov 4, 2015
Why rooftop solar advocates are upset about California’s clean-energy law
By Ivan Penn, LA Times, Nov 29, 2015
Other Scientific News
A whiff from blue-green algae likely responsible for Earth’s oxygen
By Staff Writers, Waterloo, Canada (SPX), Nov 27, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Unable to link to the paper. Did oxygen come in intervals?]
Other News that May Be of Interest
12 strategies for moving from water scarcity to abundance
How did a country that’s 60 percent desert achieve water security?
By Seth Siegel, Ensia, Dec 3, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Ignores the role of energy to purify and deliver water.]
Getting Tired of Political Correctness? Here’s Some Blunt Honesty, Courtesy of Richard Feynman.
By Ross Pomeroy, Real Clear Science,
BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
Climate Craziness of the Week: ‘Global warming disaster could suffocate life on planet Earth’
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 1, 2015
Link to paper: Mathematical Modelling of Plankton–Oxygen Dynamics Under the Climate Change
By Yadigar Sekerci and Sergei Petrovskii, Bulletin of Mathematical Biology, Nov 25, 2015
A Prehistoric Murder Mystery: Earth’s Worst Mass Extinctions
By Paul Wignall, Live Science, Nov 30, 2015
“It is unlikely that we will ever witness a scale of volcanism akin to the giant flood basalts of the past, at least not in the next few thousand years — but the pollution in the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels is replicating atmospheric change on a similar scale.” Similar scale????
By Staff Writers, Climate Change Predictions.org, Nov 28, 2015
“Secretary of State John F. Kerry said Tuesday he will integrate climate change analysis and its national security implications into all future foreign policy planning.
“We have to prepare ourselves for the potential social and political consequences that stem from crop failures, water shortages, famine and outbreaks of epidemic disease,” he said.
“And we have to heighten our national security readiness to deal with the possible destruction of vital infrastructure and the mass movement of refugees — particularly in parts of the world that already provide fertile ground for violent extremism and terror.”
“Long story short, climate change isn’t just about Bambi. It’s about us.”
Please note that articles not linked easily or summarized here are reproduced in the Articles Section of the full TWTW that can be found on the web site under the date of the TWTW.
1. We’ll Always Have the Illusions of Paris
The climate talks will have zero impact on global temperatures.
Editorial, WSJ, Dec 1, 2015
SUMMARY: In spite of the melodrama surrounding and “grandiose rhetoric” at COP-21, little carbon dioxide control will be accomplished without participation of developing countries Atmospheric CO2 will continue to accumulate whatever the U.S. does.
“The problem is that countries like China (the No. 1 emitter) and India (No. 3) won’t undermine their economic growth or stop eradicating desperate poverty to assuage Western neuralgia. World-wide, some 1.3 billion people still live without electricity. So the negotiators simply gave up the pretense of trying to agree to a legally binding agreement.
“Instead, countries will volunteer their own random carbon emissions-reduction targets and the actions they may or may not take to meet them, with no global goals. There are no consequences for failing to comply or even common standards for measuring improvement. In United Nations idiom, these pledges are called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, or INDCs.”
“But no INDC exposes the Paris farce better than America’s. Mr. Obama promises that the U.S. will reduce CO2 emissions by 26% to 28% from 2005 levels by 2025. According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s greenhouse gas inventory, that would be some 1.8 billion fewer tons of CO2-equivalent in a decade. Yet the U.S. INDC outlines only about a billion tons, 45% short of the goal.
“Not that Mr. Obama’s plan won’t damage U.S. jobs and living standards. Energy-intensive industries like manufacturing, chemicals, cement and pulp and paper will be particular victims and may decamp for overseas. The President is trading away the competitive advantage of cheap U.S. natural gas for a bag of anticarbon promises.
“Mr. Obama isn’t negotiating a treaty, because that would require two-thirds Senate ratification that he will never obtain. Thus he can make any “political agreement” finance promise he likes. But no one outside the West Wing believes Congress will earmark a dollar for windmills in Guangzhou and dikes in the Maldives.”
2. Gas Driller Hits a Gusher—and Sinks Its Own Stock
A big find typically would send an energy company’s stock surging, but in an industry awash in the commodity, it is having the opposite effect
By Timothy Puko and Ryan Dezember, WSJ, Nov 26, 2015
SUMMARY: EQT Corp. this summer drilled what by some measures is the biggest natural-gas gusher ever. The well, in southwestern Pennsylvania’s Greene County, produced enough gas in its first 24 hours to power every home in Pittsburgh for nearly three days. Named Scotts Run 591340 after a historic coal field that sparked a regional energy boom after World War I, the well has continued to produce at unusually high rates with no signs of fading soon.
“That would sound like good news. But in a glutted industry in which natural-gas prices are plunging as record amounts of unused gas build up in storage, it is a problem. Since EQT finished drilling the gusher in July, its shares have lost 29%, while U.S. natural-gas prices have fallen 24%.
“Scotts Run 591340 taps part of a rock formation called the Utica Shale that has only been lightly explored so far because it sits almost 3 miles below the Earth’s surface.
“Situated beneath Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio, the Utica is close to gas-consuming regions of the Northeast. If it proves as productive as EQT’s well and a few nearby wells suggest, it could mean trouble for billions of dollars of wells and pipelines built in and from more established regions like north Louisiana and the Rocky Mountains.”
No one knows how extensive the Utica is. “EQT said last month that it would suspend drilling projects in other parts of Pennsylvania to concentrate on the Utica, where it thinks wells have the potential to be so prolific that they could lower natural-gas prices and make competing projects uneconomical.
The Utica is already starting to alter the U.S. natural-gas balance. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said this week that the country’s proved reserves of natural gas rose 10% in 2014 to a record of 388.8 trillion cubic feet. Ohio’s reserves nearly tripled thanks to finds in portions of the Utica Shale, a big factor in the higher total, the government agency said.
“Much of the Utica lies beneath the Marcellus, and some producers and investors believe it could take over as the country’s biggest source of low-cost natural gas.
“’The Utica certainly has the potential to be more economic than the Marcellus, but it’s too early to make a definitive call,’ said David Schlosser, EQT’s executive vice president of engineering, geology and planning.”
[SEPP Comment: The old studies, based on un-validated computer models, that the US would run out of natural gas by the end of the 20th century are clearly out of date. So are claims that the US needs to subsidize solar, wind, and biofuels for energy security.]