The Week That Was: 2019-02-23 (February 23, 2019)
Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org)
The Science and Environmental Policy Project
By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
It’s Not Real; It’s Puccini: People often suspend realism. In the movie “Spiderman” the hero swings through the canyons of Manhattan using threads of “spider silk” he attaches from building to building as he travels down the street. In Puccini’s La Boheme, the leading lady sings a beautiful aria on her death bed, in the last stages of consumption, tuberculous filling her lungs will bodily fluids. The realist may say that is not possible. The opera buff may respond it’s not real; it’s Puccini.
Human imagination is boundless.
Unfortunately, many scientists, commentators and politicians expect other physicists and commentators to suspend realism when examining climate science produced by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) and other reports from similar organizations. Critical thinking is not welcome.
For example, 40 years of calculations from comprehensive satellite data show that the atmosphere is warming modestly, but not over the Antarctic. The calculations are verified using temperature measurements by different instruments in weather balloons, taken over a part of the atmosphere. The greenhouse effect occurs in the atmosphere. The temperature trends in the atmosphere include effects of all greenhouse gases, such as changes in carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapor occurring from natural El Niño events.
The IPCC, etc. use surface temperatures, which are not comprehensive and include many other influences such as urbanization and change in land use. Surface temperature trends show a far greater warming rate than atmospheric trends. The IPCC, etc. claim that the primary cause of surface warming is carbon dioxide and that it is dangerous for humans. The advocates of dangerous warming have not produced a substantiated foundation, a tested hypothesis that demonstrates how a minor warming of the atmosphere causes a far greater warming of the surface. Further, the models they use predict a pronounced warming of the upper troposphere above the tropics, a “tropical hot spot.” Observations by balloons, and satellites show that it’s simply not there. It is as if the Climate Establishment is saying about their work: it’s not physics, it’s climate science!
Will Happer – Realist: President Trump did the unthinkable for many. He appointed a distinguished physicist, William Happer, to a committee being formed to review the security risks to the nation from climate change. Readers may recall that TWTW has suggested that the threat assessments are dubious at best. They lack critical thinking. Fort Eustis, VA, on the James River, is listed as one of the military facilities most at risk from sea level rise caused by global warming. The tidal gages in the area show that sea levels are not rising by an unusual extent.
But, the entire area of Norfolk / Newport News, which is on the low coastal plane, is sinking. Land subsidence is occurring, primarily from ground water extraction from two major wells which are forming clear funnels that show subsiding land centered on these wells. One well is at West Point on the York River about 30 miles northeast of Fort Eustis. The other well is in Franklin, Virginia, about 50 miles southwest of Fort Eustis. A cost-effective alternative for water may be to replace these wells with one or two desalination plants similar to that employed in Carlsbad, CA, using prefiltration technology developed in Israel.
When the appointment of Happer was announced, the global warming chorus roared – how dare the president appoint a physicist who may question the threat assessments by experts. The noise may be reminiscent of the uproar the occurred when President Reagan dared question the assessments of the experts who considered that the Soviet economy was comparable to that of the US, including the first US Nobel laureate in economics. After the Soviet economy collapsed, the critics of Reagan forgot their previous economic assessments.
A sample of the response to Happer can be found in an editorial in Science Magazine written by a journalist for an environmental news service, E & E News.
“Happer, who is not a climate scientist, has rejected mainstream climate science for years. He routinely says that carbon dioxide is not a pollutant and that the world could burn more fossil fuels without harm. Happer heads a group called the CO2 Coalition, which advocates for a rejection of climate science, and he has said the world is in a ‘CO2 drought.’”
“’Frankly, it’s insulting to those in the intelligence community and those who are in our science agencies,’ [Francesco] Femia [co-founder of the Center for Climate and Security] said. ‘Within the Pentagon and within the intelligence community, there are a lot of people who are evidence-driven, fact-driven, science-driven patriots, and they see a risk and they begin to put that into their analysis because they know if you don’t do so, you’re going to have a blind spot on security. And that’s never a good thing.’”
Such comments prompt a response such as, “Why do these evidence-driven, fact-driven, science-driven patriots ignore atmospheric temperature trends, where the greenhouse gas effect occurs?” And “What is fact-based about claims of exponential sea level rise, increasing sea levels by an ever-increasing rate?”
But, perhaps the most pointed response came from physicist Luboš Motl in his blog, The Reference Frame, when addressing political comments by former mayor Michael Bloomberg and Senator Chuck Schumer:
“Can’t they see that Happer clearly knows more about these matters – especially the absorption of electromagnetic radiation (the greenhouse effect is an example) and the relative CO2 famine in the present – than they and their Senate clubs and aides combined? Bullying of a scientist by a politician is the right word here.”
This goes to the core. The enormous benefits of carbon dioxide fertilization are well-documented, substantiated by experiments and real-world observations, but ignored by the IPCC and the climate chorus. Worse, the IPCC, etc. have produced a distorted version of the absorption and reemission of electromagnetic radiation (the greenhouse effect). See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy, Defending the Orthodoxy, Changing Seas, and Other Scientific News.
The Greenhouse Effect: this is the first in a series on the greenhouse effect as it is being measured in the atmosphere.
Greenhouse gases are nearly transparent to sunlight but partially opaque to thermal radiation from Earth’s surface and atmosphere. The greenhouse effect is a predicted warming of the surface and lower atmosphere and a cooling of the stratosphere and upper atmosphere as the concentration of greenhouse gases increases. The most important greenhouse gas is water vapor, H2O. Carbon dioxide, CO2, is of lesser importance. Nitrous oxide, N2O, and methane, CH4, make only minor contributions to greenhouse warming. The most abundant gases in the atmosphere, nitrogen, N2, and oxygen, O2, are not greenhouse gases since they are nearly transparent to both sunlight and thermal radiation. There is no doubt that the greenhouse effect exists, but there is considerable uncertainty about how large it is.
Many economic models show that small warming of any kind will benefit the Earth, for example, by lengthening growing seasons and by lessening human mortality due to extreme cold. Separately, increasing concentrations of CO2 have enormously positive effects on the growth of crops and forests. Greening of the Earth from more CO2 is already being observed from satellites. It is important to resolve whether the greenhouse effect from credible increases in CO2 concentrations will be modest and beneficial or large and harmful. Theoretical uncertainties in science have traditionally been resolved by comparing theoretical predictions with observations. Comparing predicted and observed temperature changes of the surface and lower atmosphere is an incisive way to resolve theoretical uncertainties about the magnitude of the greenhouse effect.
Surface and lower-atmospheric temperatures are expected to warm in response to increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases. But surface temperatures, and their global averages, are influenced by other factors, like land-use changes, suburban and urban development. Surface temperatures are measured by thermometers here and there—sometimes in very bad locations—, and effort is made to interpolate between sites, often poorly. In contrast, satellites can measure atmospheric temperatures with nearly full sampling of the globe and with few of the systematic errors that plague surface measurements.
Instruments on satellites measure the intensity of microwave radiation emitted by the atmosphere. Temperatures are deduced from these intensities by methods analogous to those used in scanning temporal thermometers, available in most pharmacies. Atmospheric temperatures determined from satellite observations have been confirmed by direct measurements of temperature from weather balloons, many hundreds of which are launched every day.
Another reason to use atmospheric rather than surface temperatures as the touchstone for testing climate models is that climate models predict maximum warming at altitudes of 5 to 10 km in the tropical atmosphere. Lesser warmings are predicted for the surface, where it is harder to make reliable measurements.
Using atmospheric temperature data, John Christy et al. have repeatedly shown that the global climate models, in general, greatly overestimate the warming of the bulk atmosphere. Using 60 years of weather balloon data, Ross McKitrick and Christy have shown that an assumed pronounced warming centered over the tropics at about 30,000 to 35,000 feet (9 to 11 km, 300 to 200 millibars) is not found. The McKitrick and Christy study reinforces a 2007 study by Douglas, Christy, Pearson and Singer. This “hot spot” may be logically derived from a warming of the surface, whatever the cause. Its failure to appear after 60 years of observations is significant. There is something wrong with the theory. methodology, and/or procedure used by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and its followers such as the US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) and the models on which they rely.
TWTW addressed this lack of a pronounced warming in the context of the widely accepted Global Annual Energy Budget by Kiehl and Trenberth on January 26 and February 2. The vicinity of center of the graphic depicts the concepts at issue “Thermals and Evapotranspiration” at the surface absorbing heat then rising in the atmosphere then releasing latent heat in the atmosphere. Based on the evidence presented by McKitrick and Christy, these processes are not intensifying. Thus, assumptions that storms, floods, droughts, etc. are intensifying are not justified by observational evidence.
Using observed evidence, Christy et al. have shown that the divergence between climate models and actual nature is increasing. The divergence is likely to continue unless the theory and methodology used by the IPCC, et al., are changed substantially. This is the first of several TWTWs that will address our understanding of the actual greenhouse gas effect and why the efforts of the IPCC, et al. are faulty.
Although not comprehensive and not embodied in a coherent theory, significant observational data of the atmosphere are being collected. These data suggest the IPCC has significantly overestimated the total greenhouse gas effect, especially that of carbon dioxide. These data bring into question the right side of what is depicted in the Kiehl and Trenberth diagram, the outgoing surface radiation resulting in far less outgoing longwave radiation. Unfortunately, outgoing longwave radiation, which is in the infrared range, cannot be observed from the surface.
The 1979 Charney report assumed that the greenhouse gas effect of carbon dioxide, which had been measured by laboratory experiments, would be greatly amplified by increased water vapor. Since there were no comprehensive measurements of outgoing longwave radiation, there was no hard evidence supporting or refuting this concept. Thus, the 1979 Charney report embodied speculation concerning the impact of greenhouse gases that may have been appropriate at that time; but, as with atmospheric temperature trends, this speculation has been superseded by observational data.
To better express the effects of greenhouse gases on outgoing infrared radiation, it is useful to think of placing thin layers of slightly smoky glass over a bright light shining through a window with each layer of glass being less smoky, clearer. As more layers are placed on, the total effect increases, but effect of the last layer is less noticeable than the previous one. In terminology that will follow in future TWTWs, if there is no interference with the light (electromagnetic energy) passing through the atmosphere (the window), it is said to be transparent. If there is considerable interference with the light (electromagnetic energy) passing through the atmosphere, it is said to be opaque. Different greenhouse gases interfere with different wavelengths of outbound infrared energy. At a particular wavelength, carbon dioxide may be transparent to infrared energy, yet at a different wavelength, opaque to infrared energy. The ability of greenhouse gases to absorb, then re-emit energy varies with the wavelength of the energy.
Since the advent of the satellite era, several countries have been compiling data on the atmosphere. For example, with what is called the A-Train of multiple satellites, and a similar, lower orbiting, C-Train, satellites from the US, France, and Japan collect a wide variety of data, including visible, infrared and microwave energy, phases of water, studies of vegetation, atmospheric pollutants, greenhouse gases, aerosols, clouds, water levels on land areas, snow depths, etc. The information is shared among international partners.
Future installments in TWTW will discussed how these data, and other data, are compiled and developed into databases that are available to the public and can be downloaded onto personal computers. Further discussions will include how these calculations based on observations contradict the findings of the IPCC, etc., and their models. See links under Defending the Orthodoxy and Measurement Issues – Atmosphere.
Hurricanes and Climate Change: On her web site, Climate Etc., Judith Curry has posted two installments on a series about Hurricanes & Climate Change. The first is on detection, going back about 5,000 years. The second is on attribution which she states must be based on observations, not models. See links under Models v. Observations.
Additions and Corrections: A reader on WUWT wrote that TWTW linked to the headline of comments on a paper changing ocean pH with changing wind patterns. The link created the impression that the paper contradicted recent lowering of pH claimed by many. Actually, the paper showed 159-year reconstruction of pH based on a set of coral collected in the northern South China Sea. TWTW should have made such a comment under the link.
Number of the Week: Not €1.57 billion, but closer to €7 billion. An EU energy study claimed that annual levies on UK consumers in 2016 for subsidies to renewable electricity were €1.57 billion, whereas the correct figure is closer to €7 billion. It seems that subsidies for green energy are experiencing more exponential growth than increases in sea level. See link under Problems in the Orthodoxy.
NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Commentary: Is the Sun Rising?
Cosmic Rays Increasing for the 4th Year in a Row
By Tony Phillips, Space Weather, Feb 21, 2019 [H/t WUWT]
[SEPP Comment: Will this lead to an increase in cloudiness?]
NASA hides page saying the Sun was the primary climate driver, and clouds and particles are more important than greenhouse gases
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Feb 18, 2019
Challenging the Orthodoxy — NIPCC
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Physical Science
Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, 2013
Idso, Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, 2014
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Fossil Fuels
By Multiple Authors, Bezdek, Idso, Legates, and Singer eds., Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, Draft Summary for Policymakers, NIPCC, 2019
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
S. Fred Singer, Editor, NIPCC, 2008
Challenging the Orthodoxy
Über-IPCC chairman Will Happer may need good bodyguards
Canadian Prairie Soybean Increase Not Due to Global Warming
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Feb 22, 2019
“So, once again, we see ‘global warming’ being invoked as a cause where causation either doesn’t exist or is only a minor player.”
Austria’s ZAMG Meteorology And Geodynamics Institute Concedes Climate Models Not Reliable
Austrian ZAMG Meteorology Institute Says Drivers In Climate Models Still Not Correctly Understood
By Die kalte Sonne, Trans. P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Feb 22, 2019
[SEPP Comment: IPCC overestimating what is thought to be known, and underestimating the unknown?]
Changing Reality with Words
By Victor Davis Hanson, IBD, Feb 21, 2019
Cold outbreaks are not caused by global warming
By Jay Lehr and Tom Harris, WUWT, Feb 19, 2019
Greatest Scientific Fraud of All-time: Part XX
By Francis Menton, Manhattan Contrarian, Feb 19, 2019 [H/t ICECAP]
Defending the Orthodoxy
Retired physicist leading new Trump effort to question climate threat to security
By Scott Waldman, E&E News, Via Science Mag, Feb 21, 2019 [H/t David Wojick]
White House Panel Will Study Whether Climate Change Is a National Security Threat. It Includes a Climate Denialist.
By Coral Davenport, New York Times, Feb 20, 2019
“Critics of the effort to create the new panel, which was first reported by The Washington Post, pointed to the inclusion of Dr. Happer, a Princeton physicist who serves on the National Security Council as Mr. Trump’s deputy assistant for emerging technologies. Dr. Happer has gained notoriety in the scientific community for his statements that carbon dioxide — a greenhouse gas that scientists say is trapping heat and warming the planet — is beneficial to humanity. The memo did not name other officials to be appointed to the panel.”
Trump’s pick to chair new climate panel once said CO2 has been maligned like “Jews under Hitler”
William Happer has bizarre, backward views about climate science.
By Aaron Rupar, VOX, Feb 20, 2019
Ad Hoc Study Group on Carbon Dioxide and Climate
By Jule G. Charney, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Chairman, et al. to the:
Climate Research Board, Assembly of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, National Research Council, National Academy of Science, 1979
By J. T. Kiehl and Kevin E. Trenberth, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 1997
Figure 7, page 206
Climate change science pioneer Wallace Smith Broecker dies
US professor raised early alarms about climate change and popularised term ‘global warming’
By Jonathan Watts, The Guardian, Feb 19, 2019
“Broecker said his studies suggested that the conveyor belt was the ‘Achilles heel of the climate system’ and a fragile phenomenon that could change rapidly for reasons not fully understood. It would take only a slight rise in temperature to keep water from sinking in the North Atlantic, he said, and that would bring the conveyor to a halt.
“In the 1970s, he worked as a consultant for Exxon and wrote several papers on the effects of carbon dioxide for the oil company.
“His 1975 paper “Climatic Change: Are We on the Brink of a Pronounced Global Warming?”, which predicted rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would lead to pronounced heating of the planet. This built on earlier studies and helped to push the subject to a wider audience.”
6 Compelling Reasons Climate Change Might Be A National Emergency
By Marshall Shepherd, Forbes, Feb 15, 2019
Link to report: Climate Change and Agriculture in the United states: Effects and Adaption
By Walthall, C.L., et al. USDA, UCAR, NCAR, Feb 2013
Are Republicans wavering on climate change?
By James Osborne, Houston Chronicle, Feb 22, 2019 [H/t Cooler Heads]
“For years, Republicans have questioned humans’ contribution to climate change, casting doubt on the well-established scientific conclusion that greenhouse gas emissions from burning oil and other fossil fuels are causing the planet to warm dangerously.” [Boldface added.]
[SEPP Comment: Starting with a false assumption.]
Questioning the Orthodoxy
The Scientific Baloney Detection Kit
By Jim Steele, WUWT, Feb 21, 2019
Scott Adams: ‘The hockey stick is literally a symbol of lying’
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Feb 20, 2019
Central Europe’s Warming Since 1990 Coincides With Instrumentation, Solar And Precipitation Changes, Not CO2
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Feb 20, 2019
William Nordhaus versus the United Nations on Climate Change Economics
By Robert P. Murphy, Library of Economics and Liberty, Nov 5, 2018 [H/t WUWT]
“Although Nordhaus favors a carbon tax to slow climate change, his own model shows that the UN’s target would make humanity poorer than doing nothing at all about climate change.”
100 Percent Renewable Cities—Is Your Mayor Smarter than a 5th Grader?
By Steve Goreham, The Western Journal, Feb 19, 2019
Extinction rebellion? There is little sign of a climate emergency
By Andrew Montford, Reaction, Feb 18, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
[SEPP Comment: Great propaganda photo of a power-plant (?) emitting steam in the morning.]
New York Times hit with backlash for labeling Princeton physicist a ‘climate denialist’
By Valerie Richardson, Washington Times, Feb 21, 2019
David Lidington Shows His Ignorance About Climate Change
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 20, 2019
“If that is not evidence that Lidington’s policy has not worked, I don’t know what is!
“He wants a national debate on how as a country we make the right choices. Please bring it on. But we cannot have one until the public are given the full facts, and not the myths that the government wishes to peddle.”
[SEPP Comment: The Climate Change Act came well before Paris Agreement, but it is part of the general claim that CO2 emissions must be reduced.]
Problems in the Orthodoxy
EU Commission study Reveals International Competitive Disadvantage of Climate Policies
By John Constable, GWPF, Feb 19, 2019
“EU 28 household electricity prices are now more than double those in the G20, while industrial electricity prices are now nearly 50% higher.””
GWPF Finds Major Error in EU Energy Study
Press Release, GWPF, Feb 22, 2019
Climate War Splits German Government as Climate Law is Postponed Indefinitely
By Andreas Mihm, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Via GWPF, Feb 22, 2019
Washington Post: Another ‘Defeatist’ Climate Article
By Robert Bradley Jr. Master Resource, Feb 20, 2019
Cities and States Are Scaling Back Their ‘Green’ Ambitions as Costs Skyrocket, Opposition Grows
By Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, Feb 18, 2019
EU committee shelves climate concerns to open US trade talks
Amid US threats to slap import tariffs on European cars, the EU is wavering on its commitment to uphold the Paris Agreement through trade negotiations
By Natalie Sauer, Climate Home News, Feb 2, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
Seeking a Common Ground
The Climate Scales in Our Eyes
By David Whitehouse, GWPF, Feb 20, 2019
“You would not teach in Physics 101 that you quote a measurement of a continuous variable to one part in a thousand when its error is a hundred parts in a thousand, as is the case for HadCrut4. The sensible way is to round the annual global temperature to 0.1 degree C. To rank years swimming about in statistical noise yet hype it as a big media story and a policy driver is nonsense.”
[SEPP Comment: Explaining a graph used earlier.]
Review of Recent Scientific Articles by CO2 Science
Elevated CO2 is Enhancing Global Terrestrial Net Ecosystem Production
Fernández-Martínez, M., Sardans, J., Chevallier, F., Ciais, P., Obersteiner, M., Vicca, S., Canadell, J.G., Bastos, A., Friedlingstein, P., Sitch, S., Piao, S.L., Janssens, I.A. and Peñuelas, J. 2019. Global trends in carbon sinks and their relationships with CO2 and temperature. Nature Climate Change 9: 73-79. Feb 22, 2019
Elevated CO2 Mitigates the Stress of Waterlogging in Sweet Cherry
Pérez-Jiménez, M., Hernández-Munuera, M., Zapata, M.C.P., López-Ortega, G. and del Amor, F.M. 2017. To minuses can make a plus: waterlogging and elevated CO2 interactions in sweet cherry (Prunus avium) cultivars. Climate Dynamics 44: 3469-3479, Feb 21, 2019
A 119-Year Temperature Reconstruction for the South China Sea
Yuan, S., Zheng, Y., Wu, S., Xu, P., Zhang, F. Kong, F., Qi, Y. and Wang, D. 2018. March SST reconstruction in the South China Sea based on Pinus massoniana tree-ring widths from Changting, Fujian, in Southeast China since 1893 CE. Marine Micropaleontology 145: 21-27. Feb 20, 2019
The Impact of Ocean Acidification on Phytoplankton Fatty Acid Production
Wang, T., Tong, S., Liu, N., Li, F., Wells, M.L. and Gao, K. 2017. The fatty acid content of plankton is changing in subtropical coastal waters as a result of OA: Results from a mesocosm study. Marine Environmental Research 132: 51-62. Feb 18, 2019
Models v. Observations
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Feb 17, 2019
“I am preparing a new Special Report on Hurricanes and Climate Change.
“There has not been a timeline or synthesis of these results for the past five thousand years, either regionally or for the entire coastal region. However, it is clear from these analyses that significant variability of landfall probabilities occurs on century to millennial time scales. There appears to have been a broad ‘hyperactive period’ from 3400 to 1000 years B.P. High activity persisted in the Gulf of Mexico until 1400 AD, with a shift to more frequent severe hurricane strikes from the Bahamas to New England occurring between 1400 and 1675 AD. Since 1760, there was a gradual decline in activity until the 1990’s.”
Hurricanes and Climate Change: Attribution
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Feb 20, 2019
“Models and theory suggest that hurricane intensity and rainfall should increase in a warming climate. There is no theory that predicts a change in the number of hurricanes or a change in hurricane tracks with warmer temperatures.
“Convincing attribution of any changes requires that a change in hurricane characteristics be identified from observations, with the change exceeding natural variability.”
Measurement Issues — Surface
Data mangling: BoM’s Changes to Darwin’s Climate History are Not Logical
Guest essay by Dr. Jennifer Marohasy, WUWT, Feb 22, 2019
Adjusted! Another degree shaved off Darwins history — (it’s cooling so fast, in 50 years Darwin won’t even be tropical)
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Feb 23, 2019
Australian MET Office Accused on Man-Made Climate Change
By Graham Lloyd, The Australian, Via GWPF, Feb 16, 2019
“The incorporation of data from new sites may account for some of the 23 per cent increase,” Dr Marohasy said, “because the bureau have opened new sites in hotter western NSW, while closing higher-altitude weather stations, including Charlotte Pass in the Snowy Mountains.”
Measurement Issues — Atmosphere
The Afternoon Constellation
By Staff Writers, NASA, Accessed Feb 15, 2019
Las Vegas sees snow twice in one week after decade without accumulation
By John Bowden, The Hill, Feb 21, 2019
Climate Proof Your Home–Says Daily Mail
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 17, 2019
Recent storms give California’s Sierra Nevada snowpack a huge boost
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Feb 19, 2019
Seattle Should Buy More Snowplows
By Cliff Mass, Weather and Climate Blog, Feb 19, 2019
Coral Reefs in West Hawaiʽi Showing Signs of Recovery
By Staff Writers, Maui Now, Jan 22, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
Ocean Plastic Cleanup: Unintended Consequences (artificial habitat for mahi-mahi and more)
By David Shormann, Master Resource, Feb 18, 2019
[SEPP Comment: Does Ocean Plastic Cleanup harm more habitat than it improves?]
Water Intrusion in the Chesapeake Bay Region: Is It Caused by Climate-Induced Sea Level Rise?
By Roger H. Bezdek, Journal of Geoscience and Environment Protection, Aug 2017
Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice
Going greener: Finland’s new gas-fuelled icebreaker
By Sam Kingsley Aboard The Icebreaker Polaris, Finland (AFP) Feb 22, 2019
[SEPP Comment: No mention of costs of construction compared to other ice breakers.]
Agriculture Issues & Fear of Famine
[UN]FAO warns food supply threatened by declining biodiversity
By Staff Writers, Rome (AFP), Feb 21, 2019
“Geographically, Latin America and the Caribbean, rich in biodiversity, also report the largest number of threatened wild food species, such as crustaceans, fish and insects.”
BBC Backtracking On IPPR Extreme Weather Claims
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 18, 2019
Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate, or be Vague?
First Mammal Climate Extinction – Greens Still Complaining About the Bramble Cay Melomy
Guest essay by Eric Worrall, WUWT, Feb 19, 2019
[SEPP Comment: Why are governments spending money searching for rodents that inhabited 10 acres (4 hectares)? Didn’t mammoths and American mastodons go extinct during the warming ending the last Ice Age?]
The Anthropocene: all that CO2 and the only mammal extinction is a brown rat on a desert island
Where’s the apocalypse: With all the forecasts of doom, is this it?
By Jo Nova, Her Blog, Feb 21, 2019
Communicating Better to the Public – Make things up.
Disastrously wrong – the BBC’s disaster scare story
By Paul Homewood, The Conservative Woman, Feb 22, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
Communicating Better to the Public – Do a Poll?
11 Things Climate Change ‘Dismissive’ People Say On Social Media
By Marshall Shepherd, Forbes, Feb 16, 2019
Communicating Better to the Public – Use Propaganda on Children
What Do Kids Want? Climate Action. When Do They Want It? During Double Maths
By Ron Liddle, The Sunday Times, Via GWPF, Feb 17, 2019
Lessons from the School Strike 4 Climate
By Andy Shaw, Worth Arguing For … It Really Is, Feb 16, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
[SEPP Comment: Illustrates major errors in the propaganda surrounding the school strike.]
Expanding the Orthodoxy
Zombie UN Body Now Regulates Your Car
An obscure UN body established to rebuild WW2 Europe, is now determining international automobile brake standards.
Donna Laframboise, Big Picture News, Feb 18, 2019
“This agreement is being ushered into existence by an obscure entity, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). Its original mission was to help rebuild Europe following World War 2. Decades later, it helped former East Bloc countries recover from Communism.”
Questioning European Green
Why Lord Oxburgh Ruled Out Electrification Of Heat 
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 22, 2019
“Gummer’s report today addresses none of these issues, but blithely assumes that we can simply wave a magic wand and move away from using natural gas with little cost or difficulty.”
Constraint Payments Rise To £124 Million
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 17, 2019
Link to report: Balancing Mechanism Wind Farm Constraint Payments
By Staff Writers, Renewable Energy Foundation, Feb 20, 2019
“Constraint payments to wind farms last year cost £124 millions last year, at an average of £72.29/MWh
“These are paid when there is too much wind power for the grid to handle, and the cost is added to electricity bills.”
Questioning Green Elsewhere
Bill Gates Slams Unreliable Wind & Solar: ‘Let’s Quit Jerking Around With Renewables & Batteries’
By Staff Writers, Stop These Things, Feb 18, 2019
“When financial analysts proposed rating companies on their CO2 output to drive down emissions, Gates was appalled by the idea that the climate and energy problem would be easy to solve. He asked them: ‘Do you guys on Wall Street have something in your desks that makes steel? Where is fertilizer, cement, plastic going to come from? Do planes fly through the sky because of some number you put in a spreadsheet?’”
Bill Gates: advocates of dominant wind & solar energy are imbeciles
By Luboš Motl, The Reference Frame, Feb 18, 2019
“Our general economy and industrial civilization is perfectly compatible with the laws of physics – and even with the survival of diverse wildlife etc. On the other hand, the dogmatic “green” economy is not compatible with the preservation of the wealthy human civilization as we know it today.”
The Green New Deal And The Cost Of Virtue
By Milton Ezrati, Forbes, Feb 19, 2019
The Urgency of the Green New Deal Will Only Give the State Mob-Like Power
By Jonah Goldberg, National Review, Feb 19, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal Aims To Retrofit Every Building. The Evidence Suggests That’s a Waste
Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, Feb 22, 20199
Link to Study, Macroeconomic Time-Series Evidence That Energy Efficiency Improvements Do Not Save Energy
By Stephan B. Bruns, Alessio Moneta and David Stern, et al, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Australian National University, Feb 2019
[SEPP Comment Study uses U.S. monthly and quarterly data and finds energy reduction lasts about 4 years.]
New Deals (Even Green Ones) Are Bonanzas for Crony Capitalism
By Johan Goldberg, National Review, Feb 20, 2019
“When the government hugs big business, big business hugs back, and its embrace leaves the rest of us in the cold.”
[SEPP Comment: The Venn Diagram is amusing.]
Australia Tribal Climate Wars Sap Its Energy and Economy
By Paul Kelly, The Australian, Via GWPF Feb 22, 2019
Marc Thiessen: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s ‘Green New Deal’ accidentally exposes the left’s big lie
By Marc Thiessen, The Washington Post, Via Fox News, Feb 16, 2019
Labour’s Decarbonisation Plan
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 19, 2019
“We have heard nonsensical claims like this before from politicians. Remember when Ed Miliband claimed his green revolution would create 400,000 jobs? That was back in 2009. I wonder what happened to them.
“Of course, Labour’s policies will probably create many more unemployed workers. But I don’t think a skilled worker at a factory on Merseyside will be particularly happy having to move hundreds of miles in order to take up a new job as a double glazing salesman!”
Honda To Close Swindon Plant
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 19, 2019
“The Japanese company builds 160,000 Honda Civics a year in Swindon, its only car factory in the EU.
“This is a sign of things to come, as Europe moves to sidelining diesel and petrol cars. Increasingly their EV replacements are likely to be built in Asia.”
The World Bank and its Defunct Energy Policy
By Tilak Doshi, WUWT, Feb 20, 2019
“The resignation of Dr. Kim, for some, could not have come at a more opportune time. The World Bank and its counterparts such as the Asian Development Bank have taken a lead role in denying poorer countries the development strategy that the now-rich countries had taken so successfully since the Industrial Revolution.”
[SEPP Comment: Was the World Bank following a pattern set with the banning of DDT. Once the US and Western Europe solved the problem of malaria, in part by using DDT, ban the use of the chemical in other countries, with dire results?]
$400 billion climate investment plan for Sahel region
By Staff Writers, AFP, Feb 20, 2019
[SEPP Comment: Doubt spending $400 billion will stop the shifting Intertropical Convergency Zone.]
Judge Tosses Penn. Case, Challenges Legal Merit of Kids Climate Cases
By Dana Drugmand, Climate Liability News, Feb 20, 2019
“Beyond ruling on this case, however, Diamond went further to rebuke U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken for her ruling in Juliana v. United States that the young plaintiffs had a Constitutional right to a livable climate. When Aiken ordered that lawsuit to trial in 2016, she said ‘the right to a climate system capable of sustaining human life is fundamental to a free and ordered society,’ becoming the first U.S. judge to recognize that right.
“Diamond said that ruling is at odds with previous court decisions and ‘the Juliana Court certainly contravened or ignored longstanding authority.’
“He also took issue with what guaranteeing a stable climate would entail, calling it ‘without apparent limit.’”
Legal Experts Accuse New York Climate Crusaders of Overstepping the Law
By Chris White, Daily Caller, Feb 15, 2019
Lawsuit claims corruption, racism, sexual harassment contributed to Oroville Dam crisis
By Ryan Sabalow and Darrell Smith, Sacramento Bee, Feb 7, 2019 [H/t Toshio Fujita]
Subsidies and Mandates Forever
TPPF: Fighting Back in Texas on Wind Power Subsidies
By Robert Bradley Jr. Master Resource, Feb 21, 2019
“If wind power were really a viable proposition, each project would stand on its own without federal tax subsidies, state tax subsidies, local tax favors, and socialized transmission costs.”
Energy Issues – Non-US
Worldwide Costs for Power Generation
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Feb 19, 2019
“The IEA WEO 2018 supports a worldwide energy transition and forecasts capacity additions in power generation, by type, by 2020.
“Using data from the IEA chart, the above calculations demonstrate that electricity from coal-fired and NGCC power plants is far cheaper, four times less expensive when comparing NGCC power plants with PV Solar plants, than renewables.
“There is no need to delve into levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) and all the minutia associated with LCOE calculations. The cost and output of units being installed worldwide establishes, unequivocally, that wind and PV Solar are more expensive.”
Gummer Wants All New Homes To Be Off Gas Grid By 2025
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 21, 2019
Cheaper Natural Gas Is Coming To Europe
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
“Germany, the largest gas market in Europe and biggest buyer of Russian gas as well as the strongest supporter of Nord Stream, said it will build two LNG terminals as part of efforts to diversify its sources of the fuel as it phases out coal and nuclear power plants under pressure from the green lobby.”
[Dutch] Government admits it was wrong on energy bill hikes, used outdated figures
By Staff Writers, Dutchnews.nl, Feb 19, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
“On Monday, the national statistics agency CBS said the average household energy bill would go up by some €334 this year, more than double the earlier government estimate of €150.”
HUGE shale gas source found: Highest levels EVER discovered and could fuel UK for YEARS
A UK-based energy firm has discovered what it describes as the highest ever levels of shale gas at a site in Nottinghamshire.
By Rebecca Perring, Express, UK, Feb 21, 2019
Energy Issues – Australia
Carbon Cut Apocalypse: Climate Policies Threaten to Kill Australia’s Economy
By Staff Writers, The Australian, Via GWPF, Feb 21, 2019
Green Madness: Australian Households’ $2BN Hit for Solar Subsidies
By Staff Writers, The Australian, Via GWPF, Feb 19, 2019
“Households will pay nearly $2 billion for rooftop solar installation subsidies this year, costing every home nearly $200 and threatening to derail Scott Morrison’s pledge to cut power bills.”
Australia’s biggest coal miner moves to cap global output
By Cole Latimer, Sydney Morning Herald, Feb 20, 2019
“Glencore will instead focus on metals such as cobalt, nickel, vanadium and zinc, which are all key components of batteries as it targeted lower carbon industries as its customers.”
[SEPP Comment: Will it be able to extract these elements without disturbing the earth?]
Summer in Australia
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Feb 22, 2019
Energy Issues — US
National View: Deep freeze a chilling reminder we still need coal, nuclear energy
By Terry Jarrett, Duluth News Tribune, Feb 14, 2019
For the Sake of American Energy, It’s Time to End the Trade War
By Robert L. Bradley Jr. Real Clear Energy, Feb 19, 2019
EPA: Carbon dioxide from power plants rose last year
By Timothy Cama, The Hill, Feb 20, 2019
“As part of its required annual reporting of emissions, the EPA said carbon dioxide output grew 0.6 percent in 2018 over the previous year, to 1.93 billion tons, while electricity generated grew 5 percent, to 23.4 quadrillion British thermal units.”
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Solar and Wind
Peter Foster: Bill Gates, defying the Climate Barons, tells the ugly truth about renewables
Forcing the adoption of expensive and unreliable energy destroys jobs (see Alberta) and exacerbates poverty in poor countries
By Peter Foster, Financial Post, Can, Feb 22, 2019
“Now that Bill has seen the light on the ‘transition,’ maybe there’s hope he’ll turn his analytical mind to just how ‘settled’ climate science really is.”
Solar PV to ‘overtake wind by 2023’
Solar PV capacity will overtake wind within five years, according to a new forecast, but wind power generation will outpace that of solar.
By Craig Richard, Wind Power, Feb 13, 2019
[SEPP Comment: And still be unreliable and inconstant unless the PV enthusiasts can make the sun stand still.]
California has gotten 18 trillion gallons of rain in February, with more on the way
By Hannah Fry, Los Angeles Times, Feb 29, 2019 [H/t Bill Balgord]
“– enough water to fill 27 million Olympic-sized pools.”
[SEPP Comment: Obviously with enough water to fill 27 million Olympic-sized pools, California’s drought problems have been solved forever? Rather than reporting gallons, why didn’t the paper use raindrops – a much more impressive number?]
Does California owe the federal government billions from its canceled rail project?
By Holmes Lybrand, CNN, Feb 15, 2019
“One key point: The agreement does not require the California High-Speed Rail Authority to build trains for the track.
“So, if California decided simply to build out this segment of the high-speed rail track, under the agreements no money would be owed back to the federal government; even if no trains were built for the track.”
Health, Energy, and Climate
Harvard Public Health Paper Threatens Africans Health with a Carbon Dioxide Scare Story
By Craig D. Idso and Caleb S. Rossiter, WUWT, Feb 18, 2019
Link to article: As CO2 levels climb, millions at risk of nutritional deficiencies
By Staff Writers, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Aug 27, 2018
Link to paper: Impact of anthropogenic CO2 emissions on global human nutrition
By Matthew R. Smith & Samuel S. Myers, Nature Climate Change, Aug 27, 2018
From the abstract: Many food crops grown under 550 ppm have protein, iron and zinc contents that are reduced by 3–17% compared with current conditions. We analysed the impact of elevated CO2 concentrations on the sufficiency of dietary intake of iron, zinc and protein for the populations of 151 countries using a model of per-capita food availability stratified by age and sex, assuming constant diets and excluding other climate impacts on food production.
24 Media Organizations Oppose Defamation Suit Waged by Climate Scientist
By William Patrick, The Epoch Times, Feb 21, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
A Cockwomble Reaches for the Hockey Stick
By Mark Steyn, His Blog, Feb 14, 2019 [H/t GWPF]
“There was some modest activity yesterday in the Mann vs Steyn climate-change hockey-stick case, which will shortly be entering its eighth year. As that ludicrous fact testifies, it has been procedurally bollocksed by the District of Columbia courts, which is why it will almost certainly be headed to the Supreme Court. When it gets there, it will be the most consequential free-speech case since New York Times vs Sullivan fifty-five years ago.”
[SEPP Comment: The New York Times-vs-Sullivan decision established an actual malice standard which requires that a plaintiff [person making the complaint of wrongdoing], who is a public official or public figure, and who alleges defamation, must prove that the publisher of the statement in question knew that the statement was false, or acted in reckless disregard of its truth or falsity.]
Mueller’s ‘Foreign Agent’ Prosecutions May Lead to Probes of Green Groups
By Kevin Mooney, Daily Signal, Feb 20, 2019
50 Million Gallons a Day
The Pacific is Now on Tap
Claud “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plant web site
Scientists discovered where black carbon comes from in the Arctic in winter and summer
By Staff Writers, Tomsk, Russia (SPX) Feb 18, 2019
Link to paper: Source apportionment of circum-Arctic atmospheric black carbon from isotopes and modeling
By P Winiger, et al. Science Advances, Feb 13, 2019
From Abstract: “The annual mean source of BC to the circum-Arctic was 39 ± 10% from biomass burning.” [including wildfires.]
Shocker: study shows past forest fires occurred mainly in humid, warm periods
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Feb 21, 2019
Link to paper: Solar controls of fire events during the past 600,000 years
By Arne Kappenberg, et al. Quaternary Science Reviews, Mar 5, 2019
[SEPP Comment: Based on studies of the highly saline Lake Van, the largest lake in Turkey and one of the world’s largest endorheic lakes (having no outlet), with the outlet blocked by successive lava flows. The lake water is strongly alkaline (pH 9.7).
Other News that May Be of Interest
100 Years Later: The Flu
Guest Essay by Kip Hansen, WUWT, Feb 22, 2019
“In the case of the 1976 Swine Flu episode, President Ford, acting on the advice from the country’s best medical advisors, authorized dramatic action — aggressive intervention, in the form of a national immunization campaign — which turned out badly. Many of the advisors that had originally convinced President Ford to act almost immediately had second thoughts, long before the adverse effects started to turn up. Historians have been critical of Ford but the blame stems from the difficulty of decision making under deep uncertainty.”
Radical Idiots: French Intellectuals Braced for the End of the World
By Staff Writers, The Times, Feb 19, 201
BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE:
Laughable idea: Duluth, MN as a ‘climate refugee city’
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Feb 19, 2019
[SEPP Comment: Particularly when it’s 40 below!]
Killer Toast Strikes Again!
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Feb 17, 2019
Coals to Newcastle
By Staff Writers, Climate Change Predictions.org, Feb 18, 2019
“Scientists will this week warn that Italy may be forced to import the basic ingredients for pasta, its national food, because climate change will make it impossible to grow durum wheat.
“In a report to be released by Britain’s Met Office today, scientists predict that Italy’s durum yields will start to decline from 2020 and the crop will almost disappear from the country later this century.
“The report will say: ‘Projected climate changes in this region, in particular rising temperature and decreasing rainfall, may seriously compromise wheat yields.’
“The warning is the latest example of the impact climate change could have on lifestyles and diets across Europe.
“It has emerged from the five-year Ensembles project, an EU-sponsored study straddling 66 research centres in 20 countries across Europe. The Australian, 16 November 2009”
By Staff Writers, Climate Change Predictions.org, Feb 16, 2019
“A group of architects from New Zealand have calculated that a pet dog has an environmental footprint twice that of an SUV.
“The calculations are based on how much land is required to grow enough food to feed a dog throughout its lifetime. ‘Time to Eat the Dog’ is the title of a new book by two architects from New Zealand.
“Robert and Brenda Vale have calculated that a medium-sized dog has twice the environmental impact of a large four-wheel drive vehicle, when all factors are considered. Digital Journal, 22 Oct 2009”
1. The Green New Deal’s Impossible Electric Grid
Renewable energy can’t consistently balance power supply with demand.
By Robert Blohm, WSJ, Feb 20, 2019
“Mr. Blohm is an elected member of the Operating Committee and the Standards Committee of the North American Electric Reliability Corp., the continental bulk electric system’s reliability regulator designated by the U.S. Energy Policy Act of 2005 and by all the Canadian provinces’ energy regulators.”
In expressing a critical concern Mr Blohm writes:
“The Democrats’ Green New Deal calls for a fully renewable electric power grid. Regardless of the economic or political challenges of bringing this about, it is likely technologically impossible.
“An electric power grid involves second-by-second balancing between generated supply and consumer demand. In the case of a sudden imbalance—such as from the loss of a generator’s output—all the remaining generators on the grid instantaneously pool together. Each one pitches in a small part of the required power to make up for the lost generator fast enough to keep supply and demand balanced.
“This doesn’t work for wind and solar because you can’t spontaneously increase wind or sunshine. Hydro power is limited and unevenly distributed around the country. And for safety reasons, nuclear power—even if the Green New Dealers accepted it—can’t be cranked up to neutralize imbalances. Nor can consumer demand be suddenly reduced enough.
“Fossil-fuel turbines, by contrast, very naturally compensate for sudden supply outages. The inertia of the spinning mass of rotors provides the extra energy needed to compensate for the loss for the first few seconds. (Wind-rotor inertia is too short-lived.) Meanwhile the generators’ on-line reserve capacity kicks in, giving a rapid boost in power output to prevent the turbines from slowing down. That substitute power, called “governor response,” lasts as long as 15 minutes. During that time a single replacement generator ramps up to compensate entirely for the loss. All the turbines on the grid are thereby restored to their original speed, and the governor response is rearmed for the next disturbance.
An all-renewables grid would require prohibitively expensive battery storage to compensate for sudden power losses. Even with batteries, the lost power would have to be fed through “inverters”—a technology that converts variable-wind-speed alternating current, solar-power direct current, and battery-power direct-current into alternating current—to allow for synthetic inertia and governor response in the case of a disruption.
“But according to a 2017 report from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, if a large enough share of the power grid flows through inverters, the grid itself may collapse. Existing inverter technologies have faced serious software problems and prompted outages where they have been deployed. The IEEE is trying to create a global standard for inverter design—though heavy input by Chinese suppliers bent on commandeering the technology may pose a national-security risk if the U.S. were to incorporate the standard.
“How could the market price in the cost of providing rapid replacement energy that renewable sources can’t provide reliably? The entity that caused the outage should need to pay. Yet the power industry—to say nothing of the Green New Dealers—hasn’t given this much thought. An all-renewables power grid is destined to collapse.”