The Week That Was: 2015-12-12 (December 12, 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 difficult part of the Conference of Parties (COP-21) of the United Nations’ Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is over. On December 12, the organizers announced an agreement of sorts. Since the announcement went against the time constraints for this TWTW, adjectives describing the agreement will be left to others, and the analysis of it will be appear in the next TWTW, when it is more clear what was agreed. The following description comes from an article in the Wall Street Journal published on December 12, updated to 6:17 pm Eastern Standard Time. TWTW inserts are in brackets.
“More than 190 nations have agreed on a plan to limit climate change [assuming it is caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases], ending a decades long search for an accord requiring the world’s economies to regulate the emission of gases that [SOME] scientists say are causing the earth to warm.
“Negotiators sealed the deal after changing provisions that would have triggered a requirement that the agreement be approved by the U.S. Congress, where there are many lawmakers skeptical about a climate accord. They won over developing nations at the last hour by exempting them from obligations to help pay the bill for confronting climate change.
“The deal calls for wealthy economies such as the U.S. and the European Union to shoulder more of the burden, including a pledge to channel at least $100 billion a year to poor countries to help them respond to climate change.
“The deal also requires action for the first time from developing nations, including large emitters such as China and India, to find ways to lower the trajectory of their emissions growth, even as they attempt to lift hundreds of millions of people out of poverty.
“Governments have pledged to limit the world’s warming from the dawn of the industrial era to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) and to “pursue efforts” to limit warming to 1.5 degrees.
“Whether the agreement will work fast enough to stave off the most damaging impacts of climate change is far from certain. The world has already warmed 0.9 degree Celsius since the late 19th century, according to the United Nations.
“The accord’s weak spot is it allows nations to determine their own emissions reduction plans, immune from challenges by other governments. That was a compromise necessary to bring a host of governments on board, including the U.S., which would have been forced to ratify an internationally-agreed emissions reduction plan in the U.S. Senate, where Republicans and a few Democrats have staunchly opposed climate-change legislation.
“A coalition of developed countries and the poorest nations most vulnerable to climate change insisted the deal require governments to revisit their emission-reduction plans every five years. The first review will occur in 2023.”
As expected by SEPP, the agreement rests on power and money – and an appeal to an animist religion. China and India demonstrated their power by demanding the payment $100 Billion per year from developed countries. Thus, citizens in developed countries may be forced to pay monies to the rich in poor countries due to extreme exaggerations by some Western scientists and politicians on the certainty of scientific knowledge in climate science.
The appeal to an animist religion is found in a draft agreement proposed by the Co-Chairs of the UNFCCC, which appeals to Mother Earth. Often animist religions invoke fear of the unknown, particularly on children. For example, the religion of the Inuit of Canada was driven by fear – of monsters that may lurk outside the living area, particularly during the long winter nights, or may lurk at the water’s edge. Mid-20th century Inuit carvings, with artists living in newly formed villages, frequently depicted such monsters of their childhood.
The UN International Panel on Climate Changes (IPCC) and certain agencies of the US Government use computer models to project, predict, or forecast dire outcomes if humans continue to use fossil fuels, which are a critical part of modern civilization. In spite of over $40 Billion spent on climate science by the US since 1993, the US government and the IPCC has failed to narrow its official range of uncertainty of the sensitivity of the earth to a doubling of carbon dioxide (CO2) since 1979. It may be that the lowest bound is far too high.
Also interesting is how will the US administration present this agreement, or parts of it, to Congress. The Administration has constantly exaggerated the threat of climate change, and submitted the US plan of emissions reduction to the UNFCCC without consulting Congress. Why should Congress feel obligated to comply with any plan that the Administration develops, on which it has not been consulted? See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy, Questioning the Orthodoxy, and On to Paris!
Quote of the Week: “The prudent man always studies seriously and earnestly to understand whatever he professes to understand, and not merely to persuade other people that he understands it; and though his talents may not always be very brilliant, they are always perfectly genuine. He neither endeavours to impose upon you by the cunning devices of an artful impostor, nor by the arrogant airs of an assuming pedant, nor by the confident assertions of a superficial and impudent pretender.” Adam Smith The Theory of Moral Sentiments (1759)
Number of the Week: 3 Times and 4 Times
The Hearing: While delegates from 190 countries were meeting to reach an agreement on how to control carbon dioxide emissions, the fear of which is projected by model-based science, Senator Ted Cruz, chairman of the Subcommittee on Space, Science and Competitiveness, convened a hearing titled: “Data or Dogma? Promoting Open Inquiry in the Debate over the Magnitude of Human Impact on Earth’s Climate.” Researchers included John Christy, of the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), William Happer of Princeton, and Judith Curry of the Georgia Tech. The testimony of Christy was, in the view of TWTW, compelling and will be discussed here. The testimony of Happer and Curry will be discussed next week.
Retired Rear Admiral David Titley, now professor at Penn State, and formerly Chief Operating Officer at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), also testified. He embraced the IPCC’s and the Administration’s position that climate change is occurring more rapidly than known in the past [has he looked at the events surrounding the Younger Dryas?] and that we know how to proceed to control climate change – by controlling CO2 emissions. He also made questionable claims of accelerating sea level rise, the rate of rise is increasing, that the human “fingerprint” is unmistakable [though no one has been able to find it]. He also claimed that in 1980 Esso [now Exxon] researchers predicted global temperature rise “with astonishing accuracy” – an accuracy that he failed to demonstrate.
Author Mark Steyn also testified. He was drawn in the controversy when he was sued by Penn State professor Michael Mann. Mann initially claimed he received a Nobel Prize (the IPCC as a whole shared the Peace Prize with Al Gore). Key points of Steyn’s testimony will be discussed below. See links under Questioning the Orthodoxy – The Hearing
Evidence-Based Science: John Christy’s written testimony was a solid challenge to the Paris conference and the EPA’s claim that CO2 emissions endanger human health and welfare (EPA’s Endangerment Finding). Key points include:
· Many of UAH datasets are used to test hypotheses of climate variability and change
· Outputs of the models are hypotheses (or claims) and do not provide proof of links between climate variations and greenhouse gases
· Equations are not exact, but at best approximations
· Fundamental: if we understand a system, then we should be able to predict its behavior. If we cannot predict, then at least some factors in the system are not well defined or perhaps even missing. [This is more restrictive than mere replication – which reproduces but does not guarantee the fundamental physics are well known. One can get the right answer for the wrong reasons.]
For Christy, the relevant question is how much heat is accumulating in the global atmosphere? CO2-caused warming should be easily detectible by now. Since 1979, two independent means to monitor this layer [from surface to about 50,000 feet], balloons from below and satellites from above. Yet, the hot spot is missing.
To demonstrate his findings Christy presented the results of 102 CMIP-5 rcp4.5 (representative concentration pathways) climate model simulations. Yet only one group of the 32 groupings of models runs is close to observations through November 2015
However, there is a very tight correspondence between the average of 4 balloon datasets and the average of 3 satellite datasets, extremely tight correspondence since 2005. On average, models over-estimate real world warming rate by 3 times – since 1979 – 37 years.
“Using the scientific method we would conclude that the models do not accurately represent at least some of the important processes that impact the climate because they were unable to “predict” what has already occurred. In other words, these models failed at the simple test of telling us “what” has already happened, and thus would not be in a position to give us a confident answer to “what” may happen in the future and “why.” As such, they would be of highly questionable value in determining policy that should depend on a very confident understanding of how the climate system works. “
Christy went on to present the evidence from the tropical Mid-Troposphere, where the “hot spot” should occur. This gives more detail on how well the models perform regarding greenhouse gases. In the models, the tropical atmosphere warms even more than the global atmosphere. The difference between the observations and the models is even more extreme, but since 2012 convergence of the average of the balloon datasets and the satellite datasets is not quite as tight as with global data. On average, models over-estimate real world warming rate over the tropics by 4 times – since 1979 – 37 years.
He then went on to assume the US stopped emitting carbon dioxide as of May 13, 2015, using the IPCC impact tool known as the Assessment of Greenhouse-gas Induced Climate Change (MAGICC) and a climate sensitivity of 1.8 ºC, which is indicated by empirical data. Even with no US CO2 emissions for the next 50 years, Christy and his assistant calculated that the model based increase in global temperatures would be only 0.05 to 0.08 ºC less than with US emissions. This minimal increase is less than observed monthly fluctuations in temperatures.
Christy went on to discuss extreme weather events: in the US, 100 º F days per year are down (from 1895 to 2014); wildfires down (1960 to 2014); forest fires down (1965 to 2013); no Global increase in droughts (1982 to 2012) no major increase in flood or droughts in US (1895 to 2015) and world grain production, wheat, rice, and course grains, up significantly (1961-2012).
Christy expressed disappointment in the scientific process used by the IPCC and its followers. Climate science is murky, with large uncertainties. There must be rigorous hypothesis testing (testing of claims). Yet, there is little or none. The IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), in every case, overestimated the tropical response to extra greenhouse gases, indicating the assumed climate response to greenhouse gases is too sensitive.
He states a bias in government funding, with a (false) consensus more meaningful than objective investigation. Consensus is a form of “argument from authority” The consensus is little more than a consensus of those selected to agree with the consensus, with the Climate Establishment as the gatekeepers of information and opinion. Christy recommends that five to ten percent of government funding goes to exploring alternative hypotheses.
Christy concludes that IPCC science has severe failings:
1) Theoretical understanding of the way greenhouse gases affects climate fails simple tests;
2) Even if one accepts climate models, the effect of proposed regulations will be negligible;
3) Claims of extreme weather events are not supported by evidence;
4) Official information is largely controlled by biased government agencies
See links under Questioning the Orthodoxy – The Hearing
Oh Mann: Author Mark Steyn also testified. He was drawn into the controversy when he was sued by Michael Mann. Although he presented no new science, a number of commentators found his testimony entertaining. Steyn repeatedly referred to what John Christy calls the Climate Establishment as Big Climate. His views can be read and seen in the links below. In general, Steyn confined himself to the dogma part of the title of the hearing “Data or Dogma.” It is clear that since being sued by Mr. Mann, Steyn has done his homework and understands many of the issues, something many journalists on climate issues have not done. Among other issues, in his written testimony, Mr. Steyn points out the National Science Foundation spent $700,000 on an off-Broadway play, The Great Immensity, which flopped.
In his write-up of the hearing, Steyn’s piercing wit becomes evident. He is particularly blunt on the lack of proper manners exhibited towards witnesses. For example, in the hearing the discussion of the satellite record focuses on retired Rear Admiral Titley and ignores John Christy, who was one of developers of the system of using satellite measurements to calculate temperatures.
But it is the exchange among Senator Markey from Massachusetts, Judith Curry, and Mark Steyn that attract a number of commentators. Senator Markey brought up the idea of the ideology of deniers. One wonders what this means. Steyn speculates: “Must be something to do with energy. So an ideology perhaps something like this: people need electric power and transportation fuel to be happy and safe and to support their economy. They prefer their power to be secure, plentiful, and economical; all other things being equal, they prefer clean energy to dirty energy. SCARY.”
Among the issues not discussed in detail is that Senator Markey apparently believes that last winter’s deep snows in Massachusetts were caused by a warm “blob” off the coast of Massachusetts. However, as WeatherBell Analytics explains there are two major problems with this claim. 1) the blob was too far off the coast to affect the temperatures of Boston, and 2) the temperatures were cold, causing light, deep snow; rather than, heavy, wet, compacted snow. Those who spent time in rural New England may realize that if a winter storm disrupted electric power, stopping well-water pumps, it would take 10 to 20 inches of cold, dry snow to create an inch of water, where only 3 to 4 inches of warmer, wet snow would do the same.
Some members of the Climate Establishment may regret the day Mr. Mann sued Mr. Steyn and got him involved. See links under Questioning the Orthodoxy – The Hearing.
Load-Following Problems: In an easy-to-understand article, power-plant expert Donn Dears explains why it is difficult to convert coal-fired power-plants from base load to load following, as the Administration’s power plan envisions. Renewable electricity generation, solar and wind, which the Administration favors, are given preference. Using coal-fired power plants, or nuclear or hydroelectric, as back-up when solar and wind fail is difficult and costly. Much of the costs are in increased maintenance and a shorter working life of critical components. See link under The Administration’s Plan – Independent Analysis.
Number of the Week: 3 times and 4 times. As explained above, John Christy calculates that on average, models over-estimate real world warming rate by 3 times – since 1979 – 37 years, using Global Mid-Troposphere data and over-estimate tropical warming by 4 times. Yet, the IPCC expresses 95 to 99% certainty that humans are the dominant cause of recent global warming.
ARTICLES: The Articles section is now at the bottom of TWTW.
NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Commentary: Is the Sun Rising?
Imminent Solar Chill Predicted by Physicists,
By Staff Writers, Reporting Climate Science, Dec 4, 2015 [H/t GWPF]
Link to paper: Heartbeat of the Sun from Principal Component Analysis and prediction of solar activity on a millenium timescale
By Zharkova, et al, Nature, Oct 29, 2015
What “Science” is “Telling Us” About Climate Damages
By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, Dec 7, 2015
“In the past, from time to time, it’s been amusing to track down original images used to supposedly enliven institutional presentations. Readers may recall the photoshopped polar bear used in the illustration of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences petition led by Peter Gleick. (Gleick will be familiar to readers as the former Chairman of the AGU Ethics Committee, who was involved in the forgery of Heartland documents.)” [Identity theft of a Heartland director.]
Balascio et al. and the Baffin Island Inconsistency
By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit, Dec 9, 2015
“Also, if the community were to admit an error on Big Round Lake, then this would require re-examination of the numerous other varve thickness series that are a staple of the IPCC AR5 millennium spaghetti graph.”
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
Klaus: On the absurdity of the Paris climate conference
By Václav Klaus, Czech ex-president, published in “The Week” (Týden) in CZ, Trans. by Luboš Motl, the Reference Frame, Dec 8, 2015
There is No Global “Climate Danger”
By Staff Writers, ICECAP, Dec 7, 2015
Begins with an interview of NASA Meteorologist and member of the Johnson Space Center Climate Group (Ret.), Tom Wysmuller.
Climate summit: Why we believe Paris proposals doom billions to live in extreme poverty
By Rev. Charles Clough, et al. Fox News, Dec 7, 2015
Defending the Orthodoxy
NASA’s Work to Understand Climate: A Global Perspective
By Charlie Bolden, NASA Administrator, Washington DC (SPX) Dec 08, 2015
Obama Doesn’t Need Congress to Tackle Climate Change: U.S. Energy Secretary
By Vivienne Walt, Fortune, Dec 10, 2015
“And what about the climate deniers and skeptics?
“Moniz: I think they will fade from the scene. It is really not debatable that we have to respond. It is debatable about how we respond, and the scope and pace. Of course, I think we need to pick up the pace. But we are in a presidential election year. When we are past that, I should hope and I expect that the discussion will get down to the issues of how we are going to respond, and what kinds of legislation we need to put in place.”
[SEPP Comment: Moniz avoids the issue – is human influence overwhelming natural climate change?]
Following the intelligence community’s lead on climate change
By Rear Admiral David W. Titley, Washington Examiner, Dec 11, 2015
The Niskanen Center announces launch of new Center for Climate Science
Press Release by Staff Writers, Nov 30, 2015
“The new Center aims to critically examine arguments made by climate skeptics. Climate scientists Dr. Thomas Cropper and Dr. Sarah E. Myhre will be joining the Center as adjunct fellows.”
[SEPP Comment: Don’t bother testing the hypothesis that humans are the primary cause of global warming/climate change.]
The U.S. and Europe Are Mostly to Blame for the Climate Conundrum
The future emissions of China and India are of huge global concern, but richer countries are responsible for most of the carbon dioxide humans have added to the atmosphere.
By Mike Orcutt, MIT Technology Review, Dec 2, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Perhaps the author will explain why the current models he assumes are correct are better than state-of-the-art models used by MIT graduates to predict the world would run out of oil and other critical resources by the end of the 20th century.]
Questioning the Orthodoxy
It’s Not About Warming: Here’s Why The U.N. Holds Climate Summits
Editorial, IBD, Dec 11, 2015
Link to Draft conclusions proposed by the Co-Chairs, Dec 5, 2015
Point # 10: “…as well as promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women, while taking into account the needs of local communities, intergenerational equity concerns, and the integrity of ecosystems and of Mother Earth, when taking action to address climate change.” [Boldface Added.]
Canada Follows The Inevitable Pattern Of History?
By Tim Ball, A Different Perspective, Dec 10, 2015
French L’Express On Huge Impact by Climate Skeptics…”Have Caused Us To Lose Time We Will Never Get Back”!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Dec 6, 2015
The Economist’s Hot Air on Climate Change
By Norman Rogers, American Thinker, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
7 Disputes Being Debated This Week at the UN Climate Conference in Paris
By Craig Rucker, Daily Signal, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
Carbon Dioxide Reduction Policies Are Destructive and Immoral
By Roger Bezdek and Paul Driessen, IBD, Dec 4, 2015
Glenn Reynolds: The climate change jet set
If climate change is such a crisis, then why don’t global leaders make a few sacrifices for the team?
By Gleen Harlan Reynolds, USA, Today, Dec 2, 2015
[SEPP Comment: It may be that they need “team spirit” to do foolish things.]
Questioning the Orthodoxy – The Hearing
Senate Hearing: Data or Dogma
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Dec 8, 2015
Links to testimony:
Excellent Senate Hearing; The biggest science scandal ever
By Gordon Fulks, ICECAP, Dec 8(?), 2015
Today’s Climate Follies
By Steven Hayward, Power Line, Dec 9, 2015
“Having testified before congressional committees a few times, I have long wondered what would happen if witnesses at congressional hearings were allowed to ask questions of the Senators or House members—the witness turning the tables on the witless, you might say.” Boldface added.]
Reactions on the Senate hearing
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Dec 10, 2015
By Mark Steyn, His Bog, Dec 10, 2015
Sen. Cruz Confronts the Dogma of Climate Change Alarmism
“Public policy should follow actual data, not political and partisan claims that run contrary to evidence”
By Staff Writers, Cruz web site, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
Includes 3 hour video of the hearing.
Mark Steyn’s illuminating and entertaining testimony to the Cruz hearing on climate today
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 8, 2015
Mark Steyn rebukes democrats in climate hearing: ‘You’re effectively enforcing a state ideology’ [Video]
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 9, 2015
Tables turned: Scientist Judith Curry and Author Mark Steyn question, school Sen Markey on climate
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 9, 2015
On to Paris!
Nations Unite in Global Agreement on Climate Change
Accord for the first time binds rich and poor governments into reducing greenhouse-gas emissions
By Matthew Dalton and Gabriele Steinhauser, WSJ, Dec 12, 2015 6:17 p.m. ET
[SUMMARY in the text above under COP-21.]
Live streaming Heartland Conference in Paris and new film Climate Hustle
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Dec 8, 2015
The Zombie Apocalypse, Climate, and COP 21
By Christopher Essex, Breitbart, Dec 10, 2015
More Outrages and Insanities in Paris
By Paul Driessen, Townhall, Dec 9, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
Fault Found with the Facts in the President’s Presentation in Paris
By Marita Noon, Somewhat Reasonable, Dec 7, 2015
“Horror Scenarios Already On Shaky Ground” …Leading Geo-Archeologist Slams Climate Hysteria!
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Dec 7, 2015
Climate Change Deniers Try to Derail the Paris Talks
The GOP is making its presence felt at the conference.
By Jonathan Katz, New Republic, Dec 7, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
[SEPP Comment: The author cannot even correctly state the issue!]
Read the entire Paris climate agreement [Draft, not agreed to at that time]
By Elliot Smilowitz, The Hill, Dec 12, 2015 [7:39 am EST]
Spiegel Writes Of A Climate Treaty “on The Brink” …”Harsh Threats” …China Feels “Provoked – Unwilling To Compromise”
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Dec 11, 2015
Scientists enlist the big gun to get climate action: Faith
By Seth Borenstein, AP, Dec 6, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
By Martin Livermore, The Scientific Alliance, Dec 11, 2015
The Administration’s Plan – Independent Analysis
More Damage to The Grid
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Dec 8, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Explains why load-following costs more than base-loading to generate electricity in thermal plants.]
Problems in the Orthodoxy
US and EU want Loss and Damage as a toothless tiger in Paris agreement
Ask vulnerable countries to explicitly give up the right to raise issues of compensation and liability in future
By Nitin Sethi, Business Standard, Dec 7, 2015
India’s Priority is Poverty – Not Climate Change
Guest essay by Eric Worrall, WUWT, Dec 10, 0215
Seeking a Common Ground
French think tank celebrates climate sceptics
By Valéry Laramée de Tannenberg translated by Samuel White Journal de l’environnement, Euractiv.com, Dec 6, 2015 [H/t GWPF]
The Next Week May Be a Significant One in the Climate Wars
By Alan Carlin, Carlin Economics and Science, Dec 12, 2015
Debate between John Cook and Marc Morano in Paris
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 9, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Cook was the lead author of the latest survey claiming “97% of scientists…”]
Skeptics told to keep their mouths shut. (was Cook’s ajar?)
By Geoff Brown, Australian Climate Scheptics, Dec 11, 2015
“John Cook, a climate communication fellow at the University of Queensland, runs a course offensively called Denier 101x. (link)”
Models v. Observations
More problems for the climate models
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 11, 2015
Link to report: Models overestimate rainfall increases due to climate change
Press Release by Anne Stark, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Dec 10, 2015
The Long-Range Climate Forecast Goes Bust
By Patrick Michaels, Cato, Dec 8, 2015
“It [Christy’s presentation] isn’t the usual comparison between surface temperatures and climate forecasts. Instead, it shows the forecast and observed temperature of the middle troposphere. The troposphere is where the world’s weather action is, from the surface on up to around 45,000 feet (depending upon latitude and season).”
A simple demonstration of chaos and unreliability of computer models
Guest essay by Anthony R. E., WUWT, Dec 5, 2015
Urban air pollution – what are the main sources across the world
By Staff Writers, Munich, Germany (SPX) Dec 07, 2015
Link to paper: Contributions to cities’ ambient particulate matter (PM): A systematic review of local source contributions at global level
By Karaguliana, et al. Atmospheric Environment, Nov 2015
“Atmospheric processes that lead to the formation of particles as a result of gaseous traffic, heating and agriculture emissions appear to be most considerable in North America, Western Europe, Turkey and the Republic of Korea. Domestic fuel burning dominates the contributions to particulate matter in Eastern Europe and in many developing countries in Africa.
“In the developing countries, this source is likely to be associated with cooking, while in Eastern Europe the use of coal for heating seems to be the most probable reason. Natural dust is the main source of PM10 in the Middle-East and Northern African countries, likely due to their vicinity to arid areas. Sea salt is the most important natural source of PM10 in north-western Europe.”
Cumbria’s floods can’t just be blamed on the ‘climate change bogeyman’
By Andrew Montford, The Spectator, UK, Dec 2015
Minister Wrong To Blame UK Floods On Climate Change
By Ben Webster, The Times, Via GWPF, Dec 10, 2015
Study Finds Little Change In Global Rainfall Patterns
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Dec 10, 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 3, 2015
Stormy Weather Ushered In The Little Ice Age – HH Lamb
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Dec 10, 2015
‘Monster’ El Nino could usher in decade of more and stronger events
By Luc Cohen, Reuters, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Clyde Spencer]
[SEPP Comment: See link immediately below. Tisdale probably knows far more about the current El Niño than the reporter will ever learn.]
December 2015 ENSO Update – Shouldn’t Be Long Now Until the El Niño Starts to Decay
Guest Post by Bob Tisdale, WUWT, Dec 8, 2015
Climate Change And Human Ingenuity
By Terry Anderson, Hoover Institution, Sep 10, 2015
“Recent anthropological research by Penn State University’s Pat Shipman, built on a complete sequencing of the Neanderthal genome, shows that Neanderthals survived many periods of abrupt climate change, including a “volcanic winter” caused by a massive eruption near what is now Naples. If they survived and adapted to abrupt climate change, surely modern man ought to be able to adapt to long-term changes, provided climate policies don’t stifle human progress and economic growth.”
Dissecting paleoclimate change
By Staff Writers, Santa Barbara CA (SPX), Dec 09, 2015
Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice
Giant blob of superheated rock under West Antarctica
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Dec 10, 2015
Link to press release: The geography of Antarctica’s underside
Seismic maps of the mantle will improve predictions of giant ice sheet’s fate
By Diana Lutz, Washington University, Dec 7, 2015
Link to paper: A seismic transect across West Antarctica: Evidence for mantle thermal anomalies beneath the Bentley Subglacial Trench and the Marie Byrd Land Dome
By Lloyd, et al, Journal of Geophysical Research, Nov 12, 2015 (Accepted)
From the Press Release: Will the heat flow grease the skids?
The rift system is thought to have a major influence on ice streams in West Antarctica. “Rifting and ice flow occur on completely different time scales,” Lloyd said, “so rifting is not going to suddenly make the ice sheet unstable.
“But to accurately model how quickly the ice is going to flow or the rock to rebound, we need to understand the ‘boundary conditions’ for ice models, such as heat flow from the mantle,” he said.
NCAR: winter sea ice could hold steady in the next several years
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 10, 2015
Link to paper: Predicted slow-down in the rate of Atlantic sea ice loss
By Yeager, Karspeck,, and Danabasoglu, Geophysical Research Letters, Dec 8, 2015
Agriculture Issues & Fear of Famine
Global food system faces multiple threats from climate change
By Staff Writers, Boulder CO (SPX) Dec 09, 2015
Link to Executive Summary: Climate Change, Global Food Security, and the U.S. Food System
By Staff Writers, U.S. Global Change Research Program, Dec 2015
Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate, or be Vague?
‘Unprecedented’ storms and floods are more common than we think
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Dec 9, 2015
Link to Phys.org: http://phys.org/news/2015-12-unprecedented-storms-common.html
Arsenic from Chilean mines found in Antarctica
By Staff Writers, AFP, Dec 7, 2015 [H/t Clyde Spencer]
Comment by Clyde Spencer, President, Friends of Mineralogy Inc. Midwest Chapter: Arsenic is NOT “used” in the smelting of copper. It is chemically bound up with the copper and associated minerals deposited with the copper minerals. There is a disgustingly low level of scientific literacy in the journalism corps.
CO2 emissions set for historic fall in 2015, study says
By Marlowe Hood, AFP, Dec 7, 2015 [H/t Clyde Spencer]
[SEPP Comment: Unable to link to study led by Corinne Le Quere of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Research at the University of East Anglia in England]
Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.
The Lewandowsky concoction
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 11, 2015
“The Social Psychology of Morality, a forthcoming book from the Psychology Press, has a chapter on the interaction between “high moral purpose” and scientific integrity, and takes a brief look at the work of Stephan Lewandowsky, including this summary of the great man’s work:
“’Understanding when people are and are not persuaded by science is an interesting and important area of research. But this curious case highlights the threat to scientific integrity that can stem from high moral missions. The notion that skeptics believed something so silly as the faking of the moon landing is yet another myth essentially concocted by the researchers.’”
Claim: positive CO2 feedback from plants due to “warm nights” will flood atmosphere with carbon
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Dec 7, 2015
Link to paper: “Tropical nighttime warming as a dominant driver of variability in the terrestrial carbon sink.” – LINK FAILED on Dec 8.
[SEPP Comment: The plants will not use the carbon dioxide to make carbohydrates?]
No hiatus in global warming, says IPCC chief
By Nina Chestney, Reuters, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Clyde Spencer]
“’There is no hiatus (in global warming). Multiple lines of evidence suggest that the earth is warming,’ said Hoesung Lee, the 69-year-old South Korean economics professor named chair of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in October.”
[SEPP Comment: What recent physical evidence?]
Communicating Better to the Public – Do a Poll?
Climate-change naysayers better at war of words, study finds
By Sebastien Malo, Reuters, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Clyde Spencer]
“The naysayers did well at changing the minds of both liberal and conservative Americans in a study of about 1,600 U.S. adults conducted by Michigan State University researchers.”
Communicating Better to the Public – Use Propaganda on Children
Bill Nye The Propaganda Guy
By Robert Tracinski, The Federalist, Dec 3, 2015 [H/t Joseph D’Aleo]
Climate change is happening now, but some of its most extreme effects are occurring half a world away. How do we face a distant threat before it arrives on Texas shores?
By Joe Hanson, Alclade, Nov – Dec, 2015 [H/t H. Dickson Hoese, Marine Biologist]
[SEPP Comment: Great propaganda photo of a long-horn (Texas) steer on a tuff of prairie grass surrounded by vast water – a give-away of the quality and depth of the writing.]
Expanding the Orthodoxy
Climate Information: A National System Could Help Federal, State, Local, and Private Sector Decision Makers Use Climate Information
By Staff Writers, GAO, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise
Link to Report: Climate Information: A National System Could Help Federal, State, Local, and Private Sector
By Staff Writers, GAO, Nov 2015
“Costs are expected to increase as previously rare events become more common and intense due to climate change, according to the National Academies and the United States Global Change Research Program (USGCRP).”
Expanding the Orthodoxy – The Pope – Loyal Opposition
Why Is the Pope Mad at Me?
By Thomas P. Sheahen, American Thinker, Dec 6, 2015
The Religion of Environmentalism
By Bruce Thornton, Hoover Institution, Nov 6, 2015
Questioning European Green
Denmark Backs Away From Green Energy
By Andrew Follett, The Daily Caller, Dec 7, 2015
Greens lining the pockets of farmers
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 11, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Generator Farming – profitable farming without the hard work of tilling soil or raising animals.]
£2.3 Trillion: [$3.5 Trillion] Rich Countries’ Bill For Climate Deal
By Ben Webster, The Times, Via GWPF, Dec 11, 2015
Cash spent on tackling climate change abroad is DOUBLE amount spent on UK flood defences
ENVIRONMENT Secretary Liz Truss yesterday defended the Government’s near £6billion spend on tackling climate change abroad, despite it being more than double the amount being spent on flood defences in Britain.
By Greg Heffer, Express, UK, Dec 9, 2015 [H/t GWPF]
The Green-Blob actions betray them. Greens don’t care about the environment or CO2, just power and money
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Dec 7, 2015
The Political Games Continue
Scientific Evidence Doesn’t Support Global Warming, Sen. Ted Cruz Says
Interview by Steve Inskeep, NPR, Dec 11, 2015
[SEPP Comments: Comments section stating the UAH data is debunked makes interesting reading. For example, in congressional testimony, “John Christy showed in congressional testimony was that he failed to reveal that it was from 30,000 ft — half way between surface (warming) and stratosphere (cooling). This pattern is a fingerprint of increased greenhouse warming. It was incredibly deceptive — contempt of congress.” But is it contempt of congress to point out that the “hot spot” cannot be found? See link above on article by Michaels.]
EPA and other Regulators on the March
The EPA is shamelessly politicking in Iowa
By Jazz Shaw, Hot Air, Dec 6, 2015
Energy Issues — US
Can Coal-Fired Plants be Re-Powered Today with Stored Energy from Wind and Solar?
By Davis Swan, Climate Etc. Dec 6, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Questionable assumption: “There is a consensus in many countries that burning coal to generate electricity is something that needs to be phased out as quickly as possible.”]
Could an attack on the electric grid mean cybergeddon?
By Robert Samuelson, Washington Post, Dec 6, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
Washington’s Control of Energy
An Ice-Cold Regulatory Climate
By David Holt, Real Clear Energy, Dec 9, 2015
Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?
Billions of barrels of oil vanish in a puff of accounting smoke
By Staff Writers, Fuel Fix, Dec 10, 2015
[SEPP Comment: The problem with the slippery issue of “known reserves.”]
Zombies Appear In US Oilfields As Crude Plumbs New Lows
By Anna Driver & Tracy Rucinski, Reuters, Dec 10, 2015
Nuclear Energy and Fears
About that tech solution to climate change…
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 9, 2015
Consider Nuclear Energy on Par in Climate Change Mitigation: IAEA at COP21
By Lenka Kollar, IAEA, Dec 10, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Does it occur to those in the International Atomic Energy Agency that many of the same groups that promote fear of global warming/climate change also promote fear of nuclear energy?]
New Delhi to construct six fast breeder reactors over 15 years
By Staff Writers, New Delhi (Sputnik), Dec 08 2015
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other
Politics corrupts, ethanol politics corrupts absolutely
By Timothy Carney, Washington Examiner, Dec 8, 2015
Wood Pellets, Drax and Deforestation
By Euan Mearns, Energy Matters, Dec 10, 2015
California Marches into Paris to Fight the Climate Apocalypse
By Nick Stockton, Wired, Dec 8, 2015
The Assault on Climate Science
By Michael Mann, NYT, Dec 8, 2015 [H/t Timothy Wise]
The same old story
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 7, 2015
[SEPP Comment: Which version of the hockey-stick do you prefer – the old one by Michael Mann or the new, modified one?]
Whose Supported Policies Kill More People: ISIS…or Greenpeace?
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Dec 8, 2015
Greenpeace Founder Reports It to the FBI Under RICO and Wire-Fraud Statutes
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Dec 8, 2015
By Andrew Montford, Bishop Hill, Dec 8, 2015
The Ozone Scare Was A Dry Run For The Global Warming Scare
Guest Opinion: Dr. Tim Ball, WUWT, Dec 5, 2015
Other Scientific News
The killer smog in China (and India) – a lot like 60 years ago in the west
By Joseph D’Aleo, ICECAP, Dec 11, 2015
Other News that May Be of Interest
25 Years Ago, CBS & FDA Concoct Silicone Implant Scare
By Jack Fisher, ACSH, Dec 10, 2015
“…what legal scholar David Bernstein terms ‘phantom risk litigation.’
Politically-motivated individuals’ (or government agencies’) disregard for objective, scientific evidence
Sensationalistic media coverage
Public outrage at presumed corporate misconduct
Financial incentives to pursue legal claims based on dubious evidence”
BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
Activists go thru 5 stages of grief for the climate change campaign
By Larry Kummer, from the Fabius Maximus website, WUWT, Dec 5, 2015
In their own words, or – “I thought this was all about science.”
By Staff Writers, Climate Change Predictions, Dec 7, 2015
“It is no secret that a lot of climate-change research is subject to opinion, that climate models sometimes disagree even on the signs of the future changes (e.g. drier vs. wetter future climate). The problem is, only sensational exaggeration makes the kind of story that will get politicians’ — and readers’ — attention.”
“So, yes, climate scientists might exaggerate, but in today’s world, this is the only way to assure any political action and thus more federal financing to reduce the scientific uncertainty.”
Monika Kopacz, NOAA Program Manager 2009 – letter to The New York Times, Apr. 12 2009
[formerly: Applied Mathematics and Atmospheric Sciences, Harvard University]
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. Bernie’s Climate Honesty [Article with posted comment from SEPP.]
The Senator’s energy plan shows where Democrats want to go.
Editorial, WSJ, Dec 8, 2015
“Bernie Sanders has no chance to win the Democratic presidential nomination, but the breathtaking details of the climate-change plan he released this week are still worth noting. They show where the Democratic Party is headed.
“The Vermont Senator calls climate change “the single greatest threat facing our planet,” and he seems to mean it. He is proposing a 40% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030, and an 80% reduction by 2050, which is significantly more than the up-to 28% cut by 2025 that President Obama has pledged at the Paris climate confab.
“To reach this developing world level of CO2 emissions, Mr. Sanders would: impose an unspecified carbon tax; ban all offshore drilling and fossil-fuel leases on federal lands; stop “dirty pipeline” projects; ban natural gas and oil exports; force states to ban fracking; ban mountaintop coal mining; impose a new fuel-efficiency standard of 65 miles per gallon by 2025; spend “massive” federal dollars on subsidies for wind, solar, geothermal, biofuels, home-efficiency programs and energy storage; federally underwrite electric-car charging stations, high-speed passenger and cargo rail, a smart grid, and clean-energy job training; shut down the nuclear industry; and provide “clean energy funding” to the rest of the world.
“Mr. Sanders doesn’t include the cost of all this, for obvious political reasons, yet give him points for honesty. Hillary Clinton wants voters to believe that Planet Earth can be cooled with this rule change or that subsidy tweak. The Sanders plan admits that decarbonization under current technology will require a government-mandated top-to-bottom remake of the U.S. economy, and maybe the American way of life. Welcome to the revolution.”
SEPP’s posted comment:
Climate has been changing for hundreds of millions of years and no doubt humans have some influence on local climate. As scientists with the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) assert, the science used by the UN and many governments fails to distinguish between global, natural variation and human influence on natural variation. UN groups, and others, fail to conduct proper scientific testing of their assumptions (hypotheses).
Although government reports show the US government spent over $40 Billion on climate science, global climate models have not been properly validated. In general, the models greatly overestimate warming of the atmosphere, where the greenhouse effect should be taking place. There is no logically reason to assume that dire predictions from these models are remotely valid. They should not be used to establish energy policy
Kenneth Haapala, President
Science and Environmental Policy Project
2. Notable & Quotable: Adam Smith
From ‘The Theory of Moral Sentiments’ (1759)
Editorial, WSJ, Dec 7, 2015
The prudent man always studies seriously and earnestly to understand whatever he professes to understand, and not merely to persuade other people that he understands it; and though his talents may not always be very brilliant, they are always perfectly genuine. He neither endeavours to impose upon you by the cunning devices of an artful impostor, nor by the arrogant airs of an assuming pedant, nor by the confident assertions of a superficial and impudent pretender. He is not ostentatious even of the abilities which he really possesses. His conversation is simple and modest, and he is averse to all the quackish arts by which other people so frequently thrust themselves into public notice and reputation. For reputation in his profession he is naturally disposed to rely a good deal upon the solidity of his knowledge and abilities; and he does not always think of cultivating the favour of those little clubs and cabals, who, in the superior arts and sciences, so often erect themselves into the supreme judges of merit; and who make it their business to celebrate the talents and virtues of one another, and to decry whatever can come into competition with them. If he ever connects himself with any society of this kind, it is merely in self-defence, not with a view to impose upon the public, but to hinder the public from being imposed upon, to his disadvantage, by the clamours, the whispers, or the intrigues, either of that particular society, or of some others of the same kind. [Not adjusted for American English.]