Rutan, Lovelock & Branson

Guest post by David Archibald,

Burt Rutan is one of the most interesting men on the planet. He has designed 46 aircraft, six of which are included in the collection of the National Air and Space Museum at Dulles Airport. One of his designs, Voyager, was the first to fly nonstop around the world on one tank of fuel. That was in 1986.

He started his career as a flight test engineer in 1965 and has spent 55 years doing data analysis/interpretation/presentation. In Burt Rutan’s experience of engineering data is critical and there are consequences for being wrong – witness the 346 people who died in 2019 in crashes of the Boeing 737 Max 8.

Burt Rutan also has an inquiring mind and is an early adopter of new technologies, particularly environmentally friendly ones. He built his own solar hot water heater in the 1970s:

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He had an electric car decades before the current infatuation. This was General Motors’ EV-1 from 1997 to 2004. He built an energy-efficient house in the shape of a pyramid to minimize his energy consumption in the California desert:

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That’s his personal ride in front of his award-winning house. You don’t see EV-1s anymore because General Motors crushed them all in 2004.

In 2010 he built a 34 acre solar PV farm.

So Burt Rutan’s environmental credentials are impeccable. Everything he has touched was made to be as efficient as possible. And Burt Rutan doesn’t believe in global warming.

While most engineers of various strands of the profession are silent on the matter, and professional engineering societies have been captured by the dark side, it appears that Burt Rutan is offended by the sheer sloppiness of what passes for climate science.

Recently Mr Rutan shared with friends his experience of Richard Branson trying to convert him to the dark side:

One would think that Sir Richard Branson and I would remain lifetime friends, since he has spent about 100 million $ in space-related contracts with one of my companies.

However, since 2017 when I suggested that he not mix his political beliefs with his life story in his autobiographies (thus making nearly half of his fans hate, rather than admire him), we have not been able to have pleasant conversations in private.  When he brings up BREXIT, Global Warming or Trump it does not go well. A year ago he insisted that we, in the future, only discuss Space.

In 2006 he tried to get me to publicly debate CAGW with his friend James Lovelock (at the time the world’s most extreme Global Warming Alarmist).  Shockingly, the first email I got from James Lovelock noted that the current Alarmist/scientists’ fraud was nothing compared to their lying and data manipulation in the 70s during the Ozone-Hole panic. 

My attempts to get Lovelock to come forward with the truth were spotty (he did do a talk at the British Museum but the press said at 88 he was merely senile).

In 2012, at age 92 he did not even look like an alarmist:

https://www.independentsentinel.com/global-warming-alarmism-was-a-mistake-james-lovelock/

Lovelock celebrated his 100th birthday in July.  While once considered on ‘Team Al Gore’, he has been ignored by the Alarmist crowd for more than a decade.

Sir Richard does not want to talk about his once-friend James Lovelock.  So, lately I have given up on discussing CAGW, except for an occasional “Has your coral and beach at Necker Island been flooded yet by rising seas??”

The 1970s Ozone Hole fraud is still having consequences. Popular and cheap refrigerant gasses were replaced by ones that were expensive, fluorine-free and patented, under force of legislation. Some businesses could not afford the new refrigerants and switched to hydrocarbons, with fatal consequences. For example in 2008, the 400 kg of propane used as refrigerant in a cool store in Tamahere, New Zealand exploded, killing one firefighter and injuring several others.

The death toll from the global warming fraud is still ramping up. For example the rate of admissions to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney for elderly people with respiratory failure in winter has risen 25% in the last two years. In a country with abundant coal, gas and sunshine, these people could not afford to heat their houses in winter. Global warming is supposed to be heating the planet but it is killing people mostly in winter.

David Archibald is the author of American Gripen: The Solution to the F-35 Nightmare

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87 thoughts on “Rutan, Lovelock & Branson

    • Lovelock loved data, especially producing it and seeing where it led. At 100 years old, his hearing is faltering and his wit is considerably slower but he walks a couple of miles every day and still laughs and smiles, especially with his wife Sandy.

    • I’ve greatly admired Rutan since I was a teenager, and to now discover he’s a climate sceptic has absolutely made my year.

    • Thanks for the link.
      98 page PDF document, maybe the best I have seen, suiting novices like me.
      The question is if polititons can read it though. I think I will send it to a local conservative first.

    • Rutan applied his data analysis skills to the climate data and came to an entirely different conclusion than many of the warmists. I have used his presentation (can’t find the link at the moment) on more than one occasion to debate a number of the AGW faithful and have destroyed them (figuratively).

      More than a few have tried to dismiss his analysis on the “But he’s only an engineer. What would he know about analyzing climate data?” My response to them was always been “Yes, he’s only an engineer…who is an expert at data analysis. If he gets his analysis wrong people die in horrible ways, so he does his due diligence. If there’s something he doesn’t understand about what the data is telling him, he digs deeper. What do you do?”

    • I love Rutan’s comparison between an “Environmentalist” and a “Denier” on page 94.

      The denier…always denies new data that show the planet may be healthy after all.

      It’s time to start using Rutan’s accurate description of climate alarmists. They’re data deniers (or data dunces, for the uninformed or misinformed like Greta Thunberg).

    • One mistake made by Rutan, in what is otherwise fine work, is his statement on p. 92 that fossil fuels will be naturally constrained by scarcity. Julian Simon has proved (confirmed over and over again) that human ingenuity always outpaces resource scarcity. The latest example of this is the increased availability of natural gas and petroleum due to advances in fracking.

  1. We need more like Mr Rutan and fewer like ‘Sir Richard”. I didn’t know about the EV-1 car although I vaguely remember something about GM crushing a bunch of new cars and thought ‘what a waste!’

    • Here’s the main difference between Rutan and Branson.

      Rutan is an individualist and Brandon a corporatist. That is to say, someone who sees himself as a herder of cattle.

      Rutan is out to live life to the fullest; Branson is in it for the buck. And let’s face it: “the buck” is indefatigably to be made in the way of climate alarmism. Think of the names of corporatist big-wigs you know. Chances are all or nearly every one are alarmists because that’s the herd that can be safely guided the way you want them to go: unblinking, unthinking, just waiting for the elites to make them feel cozy and safe.

      Very few Rutans left anymore. Plenty of Bransons and Gateses and Steyers. Think of that next time some clueless herd member mentions “the 97% consensus.”

      • Branson needs to hear and adsorb Ricky Gervais’s advice to Hollywood Libs from Sunday night Golden Globe award ceremony:

        Gervais told the most liberal audience at the Beverley Hills Hotel, “You’re in no position to lecture the public about anything. You know nothing about the real world. Most of you spent less time in school than Greta Thunberg. Come up, accept your little award, thank your agent, and your God, and f-ck off, okay?”

        Got that Mr. Branson? You operate an a major passenger airline. You have a fleet of private jets that flies you around the world and have a Carribean Island to yourself, and a megayacht. Yours and your companies’ carbon print is probably larger than many 3rd world countries.
        You’re in no position to lecture the public about anything, most especially climate change, which by your own actions clearly shows you know it is a scam. If you don’t know that, it is likely because you have less education than Greta which prevents you from seeing that smart, educated men like Burt Rutan with no climate agenda actually know something about science and engineering.
        I applaud you are a self-made billionaire. But just STFU about climate. Go spend your money on babes and airplanes like Jeffrey Epstein.

          • Billionaires investing in “green” energy are in it for the crony capitalist tax credits and subsidies. The “green” part for them is the money. Take those away, and like billionaire Warren Buffetts says, there would be reason to invest in them.

          • Could you imagine anyone in a Branson company even trying to be a realist when it comes to climate?
            The realists in Virgin company are the silent ones, for obvious reasons.

          • 2Jan2015
            At a news conference [22Jan2015] in Brussels, Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of U.N.’s Framework be adopted Convention on Climate Change, admitted that the goal of environmental activists is not to save the world from ecological calamity, but to DESTROY CAPITALISM. “This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution,” she said . Referring to a new international treaty environmentalists hope will at change conference later this year, she added: “This is probably the most difficult task we have ever given ourselves, which is to intentionally transform the economic development model for the first time in human history.”
            Investor’s Business Daily: http://news.investors DOTcom/ibd-editorials/021015the Paris climate -738779-climate-change-scare-tool-to-destroy-capitalism.htm#ixzz3RXh5Tujn

        • I think you’ll find that Branson’s father bankrolled him to the tune of around £200k for his first venture (worth around £2 mill today when adjusted), so the idea of self-made is part of some fairy tale he spins about himself.

    • All EV-1 cars were leased to the users, they were purchased outright and never owned by individuals. GM took all EV-1’s back, removed all the electronics and crushed them. IIRC, there is one left, with all the “goodies” ripped out, its just a rolling shell, somewhere as a show piece. Why GM pulled the plug on the EV-1 is still debated today. I think if GM had promoted the EV-1 more there would be more EV’s on roads today. There is a doco you can find on YouTube called “Who killed the EV-1?”

        • EV1s were made from 1996 to 1999 … look at the price of oil in late 1998 early 1999 https://www.macrotrends.net/1369/crude-oil-price-history-chart …. I remember the bottom at $10.
          Why would u make electric cars with oil so cheap.
          There were other considerations: from wiki Furthermore, an alliance of the major automakers litigated the CARB regulation in court, resulting in a slackening of the ZEV stipulation, permitting the companies to produce super-low-emissions vehicles, natural gas vehicles, and hybrid cars in place of pure electrics. The EV1 program was subsequently discontinued in 2002, and all cars on the road were repossessed. Lessees were not given the option to purchase their cars from GM, which cited parts, service, and liability regulations.[6] The majority of the repossessed EV1s were crushed, and about 40 were delivered to museums and educational institutes with their electric powertrains deactivated, under the agreement that the cars were not to be reactivated and driven on the road. About 20 units were donated to overseas institutions.

          • Ok, a 20 to 25 year old memory is a bit faded. Whatever! I am sure the oil price was not the only driver in the demise of the EV1.

        • I have contacted Burt, and he loved his EV. For his use it was spot on. I discovered him as a climate source way back in 2013, and have been using his PP presentation ever since. I am a pilot and knew about him from his designs way back in the 1970’s. He has an awesome intellect and a curiosity that never quits.

      • Not every EV-1 was reclaimed by GM. I spotted one parked behind the College of Engineering building of a University in Washington, DC.

  2. “The 1970s Ozone Hole fraud is still having consequences”

    Yes sir, the most serious consequence being that the success in selling this bizarre story in the Montreal Protocol motivated the UN to launch the “Kyoto Protocol” (which has since morphed into the UNFCCC) that launched the AGW climate change scare. Three links below:

    https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/03/12/ozone1966-2015/

    https://tambonthongchai.com/2018/08/07/history-of-the-ozone-depletion-scare/

    https://tambonthongchai.com/2019/02/25/un/

    • I took PChem from Molina at UCI. He couldn’t teach his way out of a paper bag. Roland had a question about the impact of CO2 on earth’s temperature on the Advance to Candidacy Exam for Ph.D.’s. Naturally, I missed it as there was no way CO2 could do what they thought it could do. This was back in the late 1970’s and already people wanted to believe the worst about climate and “pollution”. Nothing has changed in academia since.

  3. Hey David – an off topic question.
    I think I remember reading that software development is the single biggest line item for the F-35. I can’t find a link though. Am I misremembering?

    • The ALIS system is not working yet. The DOT&E report for 2019 is not out yet. But I expect it will be a whitewash. Poland recently dropped the F-35 from consideration saying that it is not cost-effective. Some copies of “American Gripen” had made it to the Polish defense ministry – might have told them where to look.

      • You’re lying. ALIS has been working for many years. But being an early 2000s creation, it was not designed to be easily operable with cloud databases and handheld devices in the late 2010s, so it has been in the process of a major code rebuild the last couple of years to bring it up to date.

        F-35 is the world’s greatest fighter attack aircraft in history … vastly more capable than any silly “American Grippen” (makes me throw up a little in my mouth just writing that phrase of yours). Cheaper than any fourth gen fighter today, 24:1 kill ratio, completely revolutionizing 21st century warfare. On and on and on. The greatest bargain in US warplane history.

        • I am not sure where you get your information from, where does the 24:1 kill ratio come from?
          I hadn’t realised it has actually been in combat yet, where real world conditions aply.
          It’s forerunner the Harrier in the Falklands war had an 18:0 ratio against other aircraft, it did not make it the greatest fighter in the world.
          Only the F-35 being in service and actually fighting will decide where it belongs.

        • Sorry, Duane, but are you suggesting a Gen 4 light fighter – so light that a F-35 could physically carry a Gripen as an external store if the Swedish aircraft was reshaped correctly – that is coming to the end of its airframe development potential is NOT a like for like comparison with a Gen 5 Stealth?!?

          Gosh!

          I shall never be snarky again!

    • You say that like it is surprising.

      All military platforms are stuffed full of electronics these days. The casual observation passed at a conference I was at is that the current gen ground vehicles has as much if not more electronics than a 1970s era jet interceptor. Don’t read too much into it.

      Also, ALIS is support software. Interesting if they get it to work, but nice to have not need to have. To very briefly paraphrase, my understanding is this is basically ILS software that tracks as many bits of source data as they can slap sensors against and via magic of black boxes transfers all this to the maintainers. They can then use this data to actually know when items need replacing rather than using regular inspections or 1000hr milestone replacement type systems. This is not a new concept. I know of systems in service that do this on some land platforms. ALIS however seems from my understanding to be bigger and brighter than what has gone on before.

      Very little to do with the aircrafts ability to conduct operations because without it the maintainers will simply continue to maintain aircraft the same way they have been doing from day dot.

      I also question the claims that Poland has dropped their F-35 purchase. On the public domain there is no reference. The conclusions here are that either David has access to restricted information – and should NOT BE SHARING ON A PUBLIC FORUM – or David’s claim is wrong.

      • I’m not surprised. I was just looking for evidence that software development is, or is not, the biggest single line item in the development of the F-35.

      • Not being cost effective is probably a very good reason not to buy it.
        It also may not fit all the roles that they require of it.

  4. Wasn’t it also Rutan who built the rocket-cycle Evel Knievel used to try to jump the Snake River Canyon?

    • No, that was Robert Truax, a U.S. Naval Academy graduate who pioneered liquid rocket propulsion in the United States. Truax led the development the first U.S. hypergolic rocket engine, which burned nitric acid with a combination of aniline and fufuryl alcohol. They introduced the engine as a JATO propulsion unit in 1943, before Aerojet’s solid fuel version. He later developed the propulsion system for the Aerobee sounding rocket.

      Truax was later assigned to General Bernie Schriever’s Air Force command to work with Dolf Thiel on the Thor IRBM.

      For us space geeks, he’s best known for two things: the Sea Dragon reusable launch vehicle, and the Volksrocket. Yes, he did build the propulsion systems for Knievel’s Skycycle, and they worked, but the overall failure to achieve the jump (which was subsequently successfully done by Eddie Braun in a Skycycle replica in 2016) moves that feat to the background.

      The Sea Dragon could have been the ultimate reusable launch vehicle (RLV), with a takeoff thrust of 79 million pounds, ten times that of the Saturn V. It would have put 1.2 million pounds into low earth orbit – nearly 5 times that of the Saturn V, and far greater than any other rocket envisioned today.

      My first employer, TRW, reviewed the Sea Dragon concept, and found it feasible. That’s a long time before I worked there, in the ICBM world. It’s also where the term “Big Dumb Booster” was coined. Sea Dragon was the most thoroughly studied incarnation of the BDB.

      The Volksrocket was one of the earliest “space tourism” RLV concepts. With an airframe built out of a large aircraft drop-tank, it had four 1,000 pound Atlas vernier engines (LOX/kerosene), and could carry one “space tourist” to 100+ km. The tourist would have to make the last mile via personal parachute. Those of us in “NewSpace” admire Bob immensely for that.

      But I can add one story most people don’t know. A guy who worked for me at KST, Bill Williams, met Truax one day at the Hemet Airport in California. Bill was a glider pilot, and flew out of Hemet on weekends. Truax was there to do a market survey among skydivers. This cohort had to buy rides on an airplane to drop altitude, then jump out. It wasn’t hugely expensive, but not terribly cheap either. He had an idea, and told Bill about it.

      Truax had by that time perfected his steam rocket, the one that later provided the main propulsion for Knievel’s Skycycle. His proposal to skydivers was to provide them with a steam steam rocket propelled platform, which would take them up to 10,000 feet. Then they’d step off of the platform, and both they and the platform would parachute to earth. He’d charge $10 per ride. The response was enthusiastic, and without exception positive.

      It never happened, unfortunately (and probably couldn’t today, with FAA regulations on launch). Too bad, too. Space tourism would probably have been far more advanced than it is today, which is a low bar considering that new launch vehicles haven’t played any role in space tourism to date.

        • Awesome, Dave, thanks for posting!

          I had no idea you were a WUWT denizen. It’s good to know these things. 🙂

          • Thanks, beng135. That’s even cooler!

            What amuses me the most is the little bitty Apollo CSM and escape tower on top of the beast. It reminds me of a cartoon I saw as a kid, 50 years ago, where a lumber operation was portrayed as taking giant trees, slicing them into huge logs, then putting the huge logs on a lathe and turning them down into a single toothpick – one after another, until the toothpick box was full…

  5. Elbert was my direct boss. This is a man who could do computational fluid dynamics in his head. I was at the Smithsonian last year and spent most of my time pointing and saying”his, his, his,…” He designed and flew his models. Something no climate alarmist has or will ever do.

    Regards,
    “ReBob

  6. The death toll of the CAGW fraud is in the millions if one considers the number of impoverished people in 3rd-World countries who died prematurely from respiratory illnesses caused by being forced to burn wood and dung in their huts to heat and cook because Leftist CAGW fanatics have restricted coal and natural gas generated power and economic development in these 3rd-World countries…

    Leftists (like Obama) have lectured that it’s impossible for 3rd-World countries to ever dream of enjoying the lifestyles of developed nations because such lifestyles are economically and environmentally “unsustainable” on a global scale….

    Elegant technological solutions like Thorium MSR reactors have the potential of generating cheap unlimited amounts of energy for 10’s of thousands of years (Thorium is as abundant as Pb), yet Leftists hate all types of nuclear power, and its development will be delayed as long as Leftist ideology exists…

    Save the World by un-electing Leftist hacks.

    • SAMURAI

      WHO estimated deaths in developing nations from smoke inhalation to be 120,000,000 by 2050 – I can’t find that particular report again but another 2004 report put the number at 1.6m per year, so ~73,000,000 dead from burning twigs and cow sh*t.

      The report also notes that up to 3 days every week are devoted to scavenging for these materials, so women have no opportunity to engage in paid employment, assuming there is any.

      The solutions however are surprisingly pragmatic though, “Gases, liquids and electricity are the main alternatives.” However, they go on to say “Although today these energy sources derive mainly from fossil fuels, this needs not be the case in the future when renewable energies may ease the pressure on natural ecosystems.”

      Of course the last sentence is telling. These destitute people must wait for renewables to be proven in the first world, so we can reap the ‘benefits’ first, before being allowed into developing nations – not to save lives, but to “ease the pressure on natural ecosystems.”!!!

      Not that I understand what damage the poverty stricken are doing to the ecosystem by collecting twigs and cow sh*t, judging by the Australian Bushfires they are doing the planet a favour by reducing fuel loads in forested regions!

      I also happen to know, as my late Father in Law was a Senior Forester with the UN in the 50’s – 80’s, that those illegal loggers mercilessly pursued by authorities, weren’t, in the main, selling mahogany trees for westerners to make nice furniture, many of them were supplying villages, towns and, yes, cities with timber to burn.

      They were, of course, presented as environmental vandals to mask the need for heating and cooking fuel these people are so desperate for.

      Nor will I mention the deaths from poor water quality and the dangerous lack of sanitation these people suffer, those are another cause of premature death that the west doesn’t want to face thanks to ‘climate change’.

  7. I attended the funeral for the firefighter killed in Tamahere. The other injured men from his unit attended the funeral in their hospital beds with their heads swathed in bandages. Their lives had been saved by their protective gear but the explosion had literally ripped their faces off. The man who was killed was the one who opened the door. The fireball was visible across the city and looked like a small nuclear bomb had gone off. This was a coolstore for butter and cheese, not notable as hazardous substances. However the owners had switched to propane as a refrigerant to save costs and had not notified the fire service of the change. A break somewhere in the system flooded the building overnight with propane gas eventually triggering the smoke alarms. When the fire fighters opened the door on Saturday morning in response to the alarm the entire building blew up; the explosion likely triggered by a spark as the lights turned on.

  8. Thank you David – a good paper. You wrote:

    “The death toll from the global warming fraud is still ramping up. For example the rate of admissions to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney for elderly people with respiratory failure in winter has risen 25% in the last two years. In a country with abundant coal, gas and sunshine, these people could not afford to heat their houses in winter. Global warming is supposed to be heating the planet but it is killing people mostly in winter.”

    Excerpt from my latest paper, still in draft:

    WARMING: A WARMER CLIMATE IS SAFER FOR HUMANITY AND THE ENVIRONMENT.

    Even if increasing atmospheric CO2 does cause some mild warming, a moderately warmer world will be a safer world for humanity. Cool and cold weather kills many more people than warm or hot weather, even in warm climates. There are about ~100,000 Excess Winter Deaths every year in the USA, ~10,000 in Canada, and up to ~50,000 per year in Britain. It is clear from historic records that humanity prospers during warm periods, and suffers and dies during cold periods.

    17.
    “Cold Weather Kills 20 Times As Many People As Hot Weather”
    By Joseph D’Aleo and Allan MacRae, September 4, 2015 (Revised and re-issued in 2015 to include Gasparrini et al below)
    https://friendsofsciencecalgary.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/cold-weather-kills-macrae-daleo-4sept2015-final.pdf

    18.
    “Mortality risk attributable to high and low ambient temperature: a multicountry observational study”
    By Dr Antonio Gasparrini, Dr Yuming Guo, Dr Masahiro Hashizume, Dr Eric Lavigne, Dr. Antonella Zanobetti, Dr Joel Schwartz, et al.
    The Lancet, May 20, 2015
    http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(14)62114-0/abstract

    Best personal regards, Allan

    • Allan

      I saw that 25% figure today and instantly thought of your rage against this terrible, unnecessary situation.

      So far in the UK, we have had an extremely mild winter this year. If this is global warming, bring it on!

      However, we don’t normally get the real cold until mid January/February so there’s time yet.

  9. if you’re gunna appeal to authority please pick a better example that Burt.
    His work on climate is a joke. he doesn’t even follow his own rules

    • speaking of being a joke, your penchant for dive-by ad hominins is why many here consider you a joke Mosh. And that an English major can make so many spelling and grammar mistakes in so short a post, only helps reinforce your status as forum joke.

      • Judging from his posts he doesn’t follow the rules of spelling and grammar, which is a bit ironic given that he’s an English Major.

        • John Endicott

          Didn’t you know, he’s a scientist now.

          He was awarded the title by his latest employer. Not only did he accept it, he takes it seriously.

    • When you have 1/100th the achievements, accolades, and respect you get back to us with your ill informed opinions.

      See those little winglets on all new aircraft? Rutan popularized them. Those alone are responsible for lowering worldwide emissions more than ANY collective reduction of any so-called climate scientist. And that’s just one thing.

    • Yeah Steven you are on a level to talk about Burt Rutan, he designs tests and builds things that are cutting edge and actually work. He has done more in his sleep than you would do in ten lifetimes.

    • His work on climate is a joke

      Huh? How exactly does one “work” on climate? The absurd “papers” that litter journals like Nature? IPCC rent-seeking? Infantile virtue signalling? Any rational person wouldn’t waste a second “working” on climate, except maybe to unmask the corruption of the “science”. I’d say he’d bought an EV because he’s an engineer and thought it was cool.

  10. I just had a look at Rutan’s critique. It would be a good idea for someone to update it.
    I noted, amid all the other material, the section on the feedback issue. I think that this is now regarded as not quite so clear a failure of the models as it seemed to be at first, so naturally alarmists will seize on that and ignore the rest.

    • I just had a look at Rutan’s critique. It would be a good idea for someone to update it.

      Start by removing pages 18-22 (page 18 is subtitled, “Minipulation of measured data for 200 years”).

      Pages 18-22 do not reflect well on Burt Rutan’s critical thinking skills.

  11. I helped my Dad build a solar heated hot water system in about 1957, to plans from CSIRO. We used army surplus greatcoats to insulate the hot water storage tank. The performance in tropical Townsville was wanting, so an electric immersion heater was soon added.

    I do not recall this experience to have affected my green credentials. Geoff S

  12. Don’t forget that Bush 43 (I think it was him and not his dad) did not give asthma inhalers an exemption from CFC regulations. As a result, new inhalers lack oomph and don’t deliver a dose as well as the old. They are also far more expensive than the old ones, which has likely reduced their use. I would think there have been deaths as a result.

    • FYI: In 1992, President George Bush decided to “accelerate the phaseout of substances that deplete the Earth’s ozone layer”, medical devices (such as the inhalers) were considered exempt. It was only a few years later (around 1997), under Clinton, that they lost their exemption. And finally, in the waning days of Bush the younger (2008-2009), the last of the CFC inhalers were to be outright banned by 2011.

  13. Sir Richard requoted Epictetus with the following:
    “We have two ears and one mouth, using them in proportion is not a bad idea! To be a good leader you have to be a great listener. Brilliant ideas can spring from the most unlikely places, so you should always keep your ears open for some shrewd advice. ”
    Obviously his ears are closed to someone like Burt then, even though he must be aware that Burt might know more about the world than himself?

  14. Working in the DuPont Elastomer Chemicals Division, I shared lab space with the Freon group, so I got a front row seat to the ozone hole panic. The ozone hole was discovered in the 1950’s during the International Geophysical Year, years before Freon was commercialized. I always thought there was something fishy, and the revelation by James Lovelock confirms it.

    • There is so much wrong with your post that you linked. I’ll only deal with a couple of points.

      First, as noted above Lovelock is skeptical about some of the claims around ozone depletion. The Gaia hypothesis is not that the earth is alive but rather that life on earth helps beneficially regulate environment. His ECD is a fantastically sensitive detector and is still used widely for halogenated compound analysis and tracer analysis in numerous fields. I used it for those applications as well as detection of tetraethyl lead in order to characterize underground hydrocarbon leaks, etc. Yes, GC/MS is gaining because it is applicable to more applications. The use of Ni-63 in the ECD creates some regulatory burdens that discourage its use. I met Lovelock the first time before I personally used his detector. It can be used to measure perfluorocarbons down to parts per quadrillion levels. Interestingly, a few thousand tons (I don’t recall exactly) of these were made for the Manhattan project and released into the atmosphere afterward. But these can still be measured directly by GC/ECD and the amounts released and the volume of the atmosphere yield good mass balance as they are inert.

      Your whole list of “appear to believe bullets” are taken out of context or perhaps misunderstood by you. I could counter almost every one as I personally know many of the researchers in this field and they don’t believe everything that you say they do, perhaps some believe some of the things you say.

      You should read one of Lovelock’s early Gaia books and perhaps Salby’s book on atmospheric physics, which covers the basics of ozone depletion.

      https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=sK1qTDhNBsYC&rdid=book-sK1qTDhNBsYC&rdot=1&source=gbs_vpt_read

      • Hi Scissor, I have difficulty communicating with people who don’t use their real names or identify their backgrounds. I have the same problem for example with Charles the Moderator and honestly, many others who comment here. I’m eager to respond to all of your mistaken claims though, so first, please just identify who you are and what your background/degrees are. You claim to know some ozone scientists and so you must have some work experience or degrees in something.
        You can find mine at my site if you need to. Then perhaps we can talk more candidly and both learn more together.

        • I used to use my name here but then I began catching some heat from a suspicious colleague. So, sorry about that.

          I already gave you some of my background, and why should it matter? This is a blog. Anyway, I am a PhD researcher in an institution that is engaged in environmental science, atmospheric chemistry and climate change. I’ll leave it at that.

          I would critique the post that you linked as being like a shot gun blast, not focused and diffuse. Perhaps what you intended but another approach would be to take some small number of issues that you have with atmospheric chemists and more fully explain.

          I’ve known Jim Lovelock for going on 40 years, I respect him and will defend him where I think he is right. Nevertheless, he is a great scientist and great inventor and wonderful person, someone that is an inspiration for many.

          • Sounds like we are on same pages otherwise. I am a scientist who supports institutions that are engaged in environmental science, atmospheric chemistry and that other thing you said. But I would rather keep them private and myself public.

            The problem with ozone science is more than just your anonymous opinions or my real ones. When you want to help, and I trust you could, just identify yourself to someone, and publicly critique the ozone hole.

        • Hi Michael, I am a curious non scientist who has been looking at the “glow bull warming” scam since 2013. I saw a tip about Burt Rutan’s presentation, and checked it out. Being a private pilot I wrote Burt a letter, and asked some questions that he thought were astute for a non scientist. He answered the questions and put me on a BCC list of people who get emails when he answers serious questions from other people. I scour the web daily, since I am retired, looking for answers to this supposed problem. Lately I have looked at ozone, and how it is formed. I see it as being created from the interaction of high voltage electricity passing thru O2 in the atmosphere. Is that correct? If it is, a little thinking about ozone, which shows the “hole” in the ozone, over or near the continent of Antarctica, seems to make sense. When I look up the average daily temperature of the continent of Antarctica is 59 degrees Below zero F. Since that temp seems to be true, my logic says, of course there is a hole in the layer there, with that daily temperature, there will never be thunderstorms to produce lightening, to produce ozone in that area. What am I missing?
          As a pilot who studies the weather a lot more than usual, the whole idea that something like CO2 is going to overheat the earth, when it is measured in parts per million, is absurd. Most people never figure out that 400 ppm equals lest than 1/2 of 1/10th of 1 percent. If you looked at a nice warm wool coat on the internet and order 1 from me, and I only delivered 400 ppm of that coat, you would probably receive 1 button in the delivery envelope, and immediately call the cops to have me arrested for fraud.
          Just curious.

          • Hi Earl, When it comes to insights on the Ozone Hole, I think you are way ahead of the game myself. I also have informally wondered, with others, about both the electrical feature and Antarctica. The several ozone posts at my site bounce around these topics frequently. Electricity does form ozone, as does Solar UV. UV forms Ozone from a photolysis reaction with Oxygen. Ozone is a very reactive molecule and only forms for short periods of time from both processes. Ozone doesn’t last long in the lower atmosphere, especially given that ozone-destroying water is almost everywhere all of the time. Ozone appears to last longer perhaps in the upper atmosphere but likely because it is being continually replenished by UV, and of course there is less Water for mischief up there.
            Over Antarctica, there is much less UV or any other variety of solar radiation, especially prior to the austral Spring. And as you leaned towards, there is less lightning there as well. I can add, there is less atmospheric moisture. These all are seamlessly related. I have a post or two at my site which add a dynamo notion which could help explain why there is a high concentration Ozone Band swirling around the planet above the Southern Ocean surrounding Antarctica. Lightning seems helpful in that explanation at http://www.abeqas.com/a-southern-annular-ocean-dynamo/

            It shouldn’t take any anonymous or even famous Ph.D.s to figure out why there is no Ozone over the Antarctic then. It’s also funny to me that the scientists only recognize a hole for a certain region, over a certain time, when no allegedly life-threatening UV rays can reach any unprotected life form.
            Obviously we are told that Ozone protects us from damaging UV. We are also told that UV rays CREATE ozone. Somehow Solar creates and destroys ozone, simultaneously I guess.

            Rather than pointing to Ozone’s short residence time in the atmosphere, and the clear negative impact of Water on Ozone, a few very precious Chlorine atoms are instead fingered by public ozone scientists to lie low in an Antarctic and often invisible noctilucent cloud which hangs over the South Pole FOREVER. Those CFC-descended Chlorines then leap out from that high perch every Spring to munch ozone like pac-men. I have explored a few of these impossible notions again at my site. My most recent, focusing on Chlorine is here: http://www.abeqas.com/impossible-ozone-destruction-cfc-catalysis/
            In one past post I also noted that no has claimed there is an OXYGEN Hole. Given that fact, any ozone holes formed would be immediately replenished. Accordingly, so long as the Sun is shining on any of us, it has already first passed through oxygen in the upper atmosphere. And as long as there is oxygen in the upper atmosphere, (well that virtually is FOREVER) solar UV will be screened by Ozone.
            I don’t know if this begins to help and of course I don’t have all of the answers. We are both curious. I’m always happy to communicate with a smart person who doesn’t hide his identity when we have similar interests. I also have an interview offer in to Paul Newman of NASA. Maybe he can shed some light, but he appears reluctant to speak with me any longer about ozone.
            If he relented, I’d focus especially on Water with those questions. Ozone scientists whether public figures or anonymous seem to fear Water as much as the Wicked Witch of the West.

  15. Little things mean a lot and a little CO2 is significant especially if it is too little. The extinction of all life on Earth would be the ultimate point of no return. Why the concern over too much CO2. It’s like a tourist in England looking the wrong way before stepping in front of a moving bus.

    A guy as qualified as Rutan should be listened to.

  16. I am first in line to say that blind appeals to authority are to be avoided. On the other hand, it would be foolish to not pay attention to what real, accomplished authorities have to say on subjects where they have some expertise and experience. In the physical engineering sphere, Burt Rutan has always been one of the top authorities, IMHO. In the software engineering sphere in which toil, Jack Ganssle is at or near the top of the list.

  17. Good article. I will defend my 100 year old acquaintance who I respect very much. The article misrepresents Gaia theory and I will add that even though Lovelock might have been wrong about several things then, his overall reasoning was sound.

    From the article, “But unlike the three other scientists above, who attended the 1975 Mead conference, Lovelock has called for nuclear power to slow the disaster that he warns is coming. Again, unlike the three others, Lovelock sees mankind as a “resource” for the planet, its “heart and mind.”

    During the 1975 Mead conference, Lovelock occasionally pooh-poohed some of the more hysterical suggested
    disasters of man-made warming. In a discussion on ozone depletion, for example, Lovelock strongly criticized the National Academy of Sciences report of the coming danger of skin cancers from increased
    ultraviolet radiation. “To speak of ultraviolet radiation as analogous to nuclear radiation is most misleading,” he said.”

      • He could be right or wrong about that, I don’t think we’ll know. He’s definitely less of an alarmist now than he was then and has been a nuclear energy advocate for longer than most people.

        I think population is more likely to hit 9 billion before dropping to 1 billion.

  18. I have contacted Burt, and he loved his EV. For his use it was spot on. I discovered him as a climate source way back in 2013, and have been using his PP presentation ever since. I am a pilot and knew about him from his designs way back in the 1970’s. He has an awesome intellect and a curiosity that never quits.

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