Friday Funny: Don’t get Mann-handled. Choose the right answer!

There’s been a lot of noise coming from “climate science” regarding the fires in Australia. Recently, in an act of desperation, Facebook flagged one of my Facebook posts from Breitbart about the Australian fires as being false:

The Breitbart article said:

But the desperate academic clods over at “Climatefeedback” would have none of it, promptly flagging the article as false.

Note the pea and the thimble here.

They scope of the fires was related to arson, pure and simple. Lightning also contributed. These are indisputable facts. CO2 molecules didn’t run around starting fires. The best they could claim is that the fires started by arson and lightning might have spread faster due to a dry fuel load.

Climatefeedback didn’t actually dispute that the fires weren’t started by Arsonists or lightning, they just chose to flag it so they could inject the climate change narrative:

But here’s the thing, and there’s no getting around this. In the key take-away they cite the year as the “driest on record” while also mentioning “dry and windy weather patterns”. As anybody knows, a weather event is not climate, and a year’s worth of weather is not climate.

Source: AR5 IPCC summary for policymakers (SPM)
Source: AR5 glossary http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg1/WG1AR5_AnnexIII_FINAL.pdf

It’s an epic fail by the supposed climate experts at Climatefeedback. If the tables were turned, and an article was citing a year of cold weather, and a cold weather event, they’d dismiss it with the wave of hand saying “weather is not climate”.

Unless of course, weather events support “the cause”.

Then there’s the data from Australia’s BoM. Rainfall over the past 60 years has been wetter.

Precipitation graphs by Willis Eschenbach

From Dr. Roy Spencer:

To drive home the point that any given year should not be used as evidence of a long-term trend, Australia precipitation provides an excellent example. The following plot is like the temperature plot above (Fig. 2), but now for precipitation as reported by the BOM (data here).

While it is certainly true that 2019 was the driest year in Australia since 1900, likely caused by extended La Nina conditions in the Pacific, they can’t pin it on climate change caused drought, because climate is a 30 year average, and because we’ve been told repeatedly that “weather is not climate“.

Then there’s this summary from Dr. Roy Spencer:


Summary Points

1) Global wildfire activity has decreased in recent decades, making any localized increase (or decrease) in wildfire activity difficult to attribute to ‘global climate change’.

2) Like California, Australia is prone to bushfires every year during the dry season. Ample fuel and dry weather exists for devastating fires each year, even without excessive heat or drought, as illustrated by the record number of hectares burned (over 100 million) during 1974-75 when above-average precipitation and below-average temperatures existed.

3) Australian average temperatures in 2019 were well above what global warming theory can explain, illustrating the importance of natural year-to-year variability in weather patterns (e.g. drought and excessively high temperatures).

4) Australia precipitation was at a record low in 2019, but climate models predict no long-term trend in Australia precipitation, while the observed trend has been upward, not downward. This again highlights the importance of natural climate variability to fire weather conditions, as opposed to human-induced climate change.

5) While reductions in prescribed burning have probably contributed to the irregular increase in the number of years with large bush fires, a five-fold increase in population in the last 100 years has greatly increased potential ignition sources, both accidental and purposeful.

In summary, [IMO] Climatefeedback is either ignorant, incompetent, or flat-out lied to support the narrative that “climate change” has it’s fingerprint on everything. As I’ve said repeatedly, it has become the universal boogeyman.

Meanwhile:

Alas, to be politically correct in attributing cause in the future, Josh has created this handy quiz (updated):

243 thoughts on “Friday Funny: Don’t get Mann-handled. Choose the right answer!

  1. WUWT should refrain from exaggeration, and leave that to the side that exaggerates man-made climate change. Most of those 183 arrests were not for intentionally setting fires, which account for 24 of that 183. Most of those arrests were for fire ban violations other than arson, or for violations that occurred well before this big round of bushfires.

  2. Please don’t resort to alarmist activity, it does none of us any good. The number of people arrested for arson is not 183, it is 24. The remainder were facing charges of sloppy activity related to fire danger.

    Not that 24 is insignificant; 24 fires started at 10 mile intervals would still produce a 240-mile fire-front.

    • Whether intentional (arson) or not (“sloppy activity”) the point is the same.
      It is not CO2 that initiated the fires no matter what Mann or Greta says.

      • “CO2 molecules didn’t run around starting fires.”
        “It is not CO2 that initiated the fires”

        This is one roughed up strawman.

        • You’re right, Loydo.
          CO2 didn’t start those fires.
          There must have been one of those “weather cows” in the vicinity. (Their methane is particularly nasty.)
          Australia needs to mandate that “Beano” be added to their feed.

          • Arson is not new. Blaming arsonists for the severity and scale of these fires is a lie and a dangerous one because it means crucial factors like fuel-reduction, land manage, properly funded fire services and a suit of other important issues don’t get the attention they should and that will mean more lives are lost and more homes burnt. Its the most heinous form of disinformation.

          • The bigger the news, the more arsonists love to play. They aren’t interested in starting fires that nobody cares about. So yes, arsonists play a role in the scale.

            And no, arson is not new…but using brushfires to promote a political agenda is new. Enviro wackjobs can’t control hurricanes (just hope they make devastating landfalls), but they sure can start a fire and scream, “Climate change!!!”

            Finally, fuel-reduction, land management, properly-funded fire services, etc., do get attention when arsonists strike. WTF planet are you on?

          • “Arson is not new. Blaming arsonists for the severity and scale of these fires is a lie and a dangerous one because it means crucial factors like fuel-reduction, land manage, properly funded fire services and a suit of other important issues don’t get the attention they should and that will mean more lives are lost and more homes burnt. Its the most heinous form of disinformation.”

            No. Blaming CO2 for making everything worse is the most heinous form of disinformation. Those other crucial factors you mentioned have been addressed here, and just about everyone is in agreement there. You should be berating Mann, not Man.

          • Loydo is absolutely correct. It wasn’t arsonists so much as misguided government policies on forest management which were the basic underlying cause of brush fires.

            The focus on climate change as the cause of the fires is an attempt at a coverup to sweep the real responsibility under the rug while promoting the current political agenda.

          • I’d say there are multiple factors including the ones you mentioned yirgach, plus arson, plus climate change. You seem to be have a blind spot.

          • I don’t want to miss the opportunity to partially agree with Loydo. It’s pretty much a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

            Fuel reduction is a major factor that you wouldn’t want to ignore.

            But the point of the cartoon was arson AND poor land management, NOT climate change.

        • Come on Loydo. What country do you live in.

          The US, we are told, 27/7 on all the Left wing Fake news channels, BBC, PBS, CNN, that climate change caused the Australian fires and that the Australian people are demanding that their government do more to fight climate change.

          What we are saying is not a strawman, but rather it seems, a fact.

          Facts are things which we know to be true as they are the natural explanation to sets of logically linked observations.

          Climate change did not cause the Australian fires and the reason the fires are so large is there is no land management yearly to reduce fuel for eventual fires.

          The problem is fires will eventually occur. The efforts to stop all fires from occurring for generations will result in mega fires.

          • No William, to say anyone claims climate change “causes” ie ignites a fire is a strawman. No one makes that ludicrous claim. Arsonists have always ignited fires, climate change has made them larger and more severe.

          • “Loydo January 10, 2020 at 7:11 pm”

            There is no evidence for CO2 does that. However, there *IS* evidence of decades of ZERO land management practices of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s not conducted since that increases fuel load.

        • The key issue is that there is no trend in lower rainfall.
          QED any impact of dry conditions on the fires derives from weather not climate.
          We cannot control the weather.
          So we must act on what we can control – the ignition of the fires.

          It’s about arson. not CO2, from a policy viewpoint. Anyone talking about CO2 is at best wasting time.
          At worst they are getting in the way of practical action just to push their own partisan agenda.

        • I’m sure even Loydo must agree that what sets up a bad season of fires is a season of increased rain followed by severe drought. If drought occurs alone, there is no fuel to burn (grasses, shrubs, trees). The rainy season is essential. And this is the pattern Australia suffered these last few years (see chart in article above). Heavy rain, then severe drought.

          The recent fires have nothing to do with climate change. Government policy suppressing prescribed burns on “environmental” grounds, however, likely worsened the fires.

    • What percentage of fires were started accidentally? Presumably a lot of accidental ignition are from “sloppy activity related to fire danger.”

      • one of the dead firefighters had reportedly put OUT around SEVEN unattended campfires…this in fireban days!! high winds etc and already fires elsewhere
        and the poor chap had an accident while driving back from doing that
        the 7 campers should be found n charged but chances are slim.

    • And arsonists usually don’t start one fire. They start multiple fires! IIRC, one RFS volunteer was charged with starting 7 fires.

    • They are the figures for NSW only, so far.
      In Queensland ‘101 people on 172 charges, including 32 adults and 69 juveniles, who have been dealt with for “offences relating to recklessly and/or deliberately setting fires’ so far.
      In SA ‘so far made 10 arrests or reports over the past four months’.
      There is no data available from the police in Victoria which isn’t surprising given their recent reputation.
      The final number of genuine intentional arson convictions will emerge in time.

    • which in the prevailing conditions would soon become a 2400 mile fire front.

      The fires in SE Queensland, NSW and SE Vicroria are all in some of the most heavily forested, hilly and mountainous terrain on the continent and that alone is a major if not dominent factor in their intensity, rate of spread and difficult in fighting. Add to that the current drought in the same / adjacent parts of the country and the lack of moisture coming from the west courtesy of the Indian Ocean Dipole being positive for twice its normal period and ‘climate change’ is running a distant last in terms of material effect if actually in the race.

    • We don’t know how MANY fires 24 people started.
      Nor do we know how many days they were starting fires until they were caught…

      We DO know that about 50% of bushfires in any given year are from arson or suspected arson…

    • Hard to prove intent. A story in a newspaper pointed out that throwing a cigarette butt out near a road gets called out as negligent. I don’t know their intent but it came across as instructions to disguise intent.

      • A driver towing a boat where the tyre burst causing the axle to drag along the road started a roadside grass fire that rapidly spread. Not arson however, if roadside fire hazard management had been conducted, like it used to, would there have been a fire?

        • Yep, it called mowing the road side. In the US it still incumbent that the railways keep there rightaways clear if fuel, to bad it not a national law power companies be required to do the same, that way Calistupid politicians would not be aloud to inhibit power companies from doing their job.

    • Adelaide had worse conditions than Melbourne in 2009 but no bushfires like in the hills outside Melbourne. A city of 1 M but nobody discarded a cigarette in the hills. Even in Melbourne, the fires were started by powerlines.

      Now we have hundreds a large distance from a city? It might be difficult to prove intent but the statistics suggest an upsurge due to malicious intent.

        • Lot more fires started than in previous years. All of a sudden there was a lot more clumsiness or deliberate intent to start a fire.

          5 million hectares were burnt in the Black Thursday fire of 1851 attributed to one Bullock team leaving burning logs unattended. CO2 was perfect back then.

    • “facing charges of sloppy activity related to fire danger.”

      no……sloppy activity that actually started a fire

      so it’s at least 200 fires started by people….

      ..take those 200 fires away and there would be nothing to talk about

          • Similar alarmist views on climate, but not Griff. I think Loydo actually does live in Australia, unlike Griff.

        • Actually, the biggest fire in NSW this season started by dry lightening in a park. Who clears fule loads in parks? That’s right, no-one! It’s BURNS!

          • In difficult to reach forested areas with decades of fuel load available? How long is a piece of string?

          • Seems to have been quite a lot more started deliberately this season than any season before in my memory since migrating to Australia from New Zealand in 2005 and I have been following this global cooling/global warming/global climate change story since the late 60’s and early 70’s, I even worked for NIWA in NZ in 2000/2001.

        • You talk about a strawman argument Loydo, but what is actually the bogus argument is your focus on intent to debunk the reality that these fires are caused by humans. What difference does it make whether it was intentional arson or just criminal negligence? Or even purely accidental?

          The increase compared to earlier periods of drought such as 1901 or 1940 is attributable to there being far more people now.

          Maybe there have also been eco-terrorists involved, a distinction that I’m not implying would be unimportant if it were proven, but it isn’t necessary to prove arson, or the motivation for arson, to prove that the fires are being initiated by human activity.

          The claim being made all over the MSM (worldwide) is that the frequency and intensity of fires is the fault of climate change. But the frequency is the fault of greater human activity and the intensity is caused by lamebrained green regulations preventing appropriate forest management (also human caused).

          Blaming climate change (which everyone knows Australia is powerless to affect, whether climate change is caused by human fossil fuel burning or not), runs the risk that important changes in fuel management won’t be made.

          Returning to sane land management practices is something that Australia can actually do, and be effective. Reducing CO2 levels is something that isn’t remotely possible even if Australia stops all burning of fossil fuels today.

    • Thank you, Len. It does the sceptic cause no good to lie with figures like alarmists do. It clearly states 183 were arrested, but this is not true. A caution is not an arrest, in any language, and they weren’t cautioned for arson, either.

      Lying like this makes the whole, and valid, point easily dismissable by alarmists.

      • Under English law a person may receive a caution if they admit to committing an offence. Therefore they have to be arrested first and cautioned under PACE (English equivalent to Miranda).

    • As far as I can tell, arson involves deliberately starting a fire in every jurisdiction.

      On the other hand, accidentally starting a fire can result in a very stiff sentence. Two offenses come to mind: 1 – manslaughter 2 – criminal negligence causing death.

      As you say, the mainstream media and academics are playing up the fact that there weren’t that many actual arson charges. The point is that humans directly supplied ignition and were criminally charged.

      • Salute!

        THNX, Commie.

        The gal that started the Hayman Fire in Colorado back in 2002 served time for criminal negligence or some less degree of manslaughter due to at least one death. She was burning love letters on a hot, dry and windy day !!!! If wind had been 30 degrees off, my cabin would have burned down, as the fire roared thru about one mile north of me.

        Very strict laws in Colorado for starting fires by leaving a campfire or throwing out a cigarette or losing control of your BBQ or…….

        Gums sends…

    • Your link says:
      “There is also a long-term upward trend in fire weather with the strongest trend found in southern Australia, in spring.
      This long-term trend is likely mostly due to anthropogenic climate change, rather than the influence of the IPO or the occurrence of congruent trends.”

      • Climate ‘science’ has gotta come up with better descriptors than expressions such as “likely due to”

        I mean, it’s just not SCIENCY enough, and not at all scary.

        Are there an English majors around here who might be able to get to work on this problem?

      • **This long-term trend is likely mostly due to anthropogenic climate change, rather than the influence of the IPO or the occurrence of congruent trends.”**
        The usual fake news pushed by the usual sources.
        Is that called science?

      • And the link also says

        The positive trends are not driven by the trends in the climate drivers and they are not consistent with hypothesized impacts of the IPO, either before or after its late-1990s shift to the cold phase. We propose that anthropogenic climate change is the primary driver of the trend, through both higher mean temperatures and potentially through associated shifts in large-scale rainfall patterns. Variations from interannual factors are generally larger in magnitude than the trend effects observed to date.

        “potentially through associated shifts in large-scale rainfall patterns”

        Their assumption is that changes in rainfall patterns have been “driven” by anthropogenic climate change. That doesn’t even follow. Its as if any change must be due to CO2 and just rolls off the tongue.

        The 1 C increase in temperatures thing? Sure. Fine. But is that a primary driver of actual fires? Not on its own it isn’t.

      • Nick, that paper also says

        Judging from the fire weather time series, the fire seasons of 1973–74 and 2010–11 are the two mildest seasons over the past several decades. These periods are the wettest on record for Australia and coincid with moderate to strong La Niña events (see [44]).

        So the season of 73-74 was wettest on record. That will have meant massive growth leading to the 74-75 fires, by far the largest recorded. Fuel is a hugely critical factor in Australia’s fires and when you have the fuel, you’re waiting for the ducks to line up with weather to spark them.

      • Nick Stokes January 10, 2020 at 12:44 pm

        Your link says: “There is also a long-term upward …

        – da hast Du schon recht, Nick Stokes, dieser link sagt das.

        – was weiter mit deiner Rechthaberei.

        – you’re right, Nick Stokes, this link says that.

        – what is further comprising with your ‘I told you so’?

    • Thats right Sun Spot: “history”. This: https://aic.gov.au/publications/bfab/bfab051
      shows how 280,000 Australian fires were started over many years: 13% were arson, a further 37% were suspicious and 37% accidental. In other words – historically, the vast majority were ignited by human hands.

      So in regards to how they were ignited, this year will most likely be no different from any previous year. The ONLY differences this year are record heat and record dry, making them larger and more intense once ignited. Saying the difference is about arsonists is a lie.

      • To counter the claim that a lot of fires this year were arson, Loydo points out that over a long period of time, fewer fires were arson.

        Once again, any statistic from the past is not allowed to change. Ever.

      • Oh, I dunno about record heat or record dry Loydo.
        Remember, the BoM has disappeared the 1895 – 1903 ‘Federation Drought’ where the Murray River and its main tributaries actually dried up to the extent that wagon races were conducted in the bed of the Murray River.

        So there’s REAL RECORDS (aka ‘history’) and there’s BoM records (aka ‘selections’)

        • “wagon races were conducted in the bed of the Murray River”

          The Murray would be the same today if the weirs hadn’t been built.

          • Yep.
            Dams hold plenty of water in even in severe droughts.
            Tell that to the Greens and other numpties who say dams don’t work because you need rain to fill them.

            I had a dam that used to get low in drought times.
            Then I had another dam dug.
            Then in drought times I had 2 dams that were low, but I still had twice as much water as I used to have. That got me through the dry times comfortably.

            So more dams = more water.

        • Dont be too tough on the Australian Bureau of Meteorology
          At least they explained the cause of the drying drought and heat as coming from an unusual combination of weather systems in the Indian ocean ( Indian Ocean Dipole in negative mode) plus the Southern ocean ( Southern Annular mode) persisting for longer than usual
          But no one listened to them so to the media plus ABC plus Michael Mann its all caused by manmade climate change

      • “So in regards to how they were ignited, this year will most likely be no different from any previous year.”

        This is just your guess. It is not a fact.

        *******

        “The ONLY differences this year are record heat and record dry, making them larger and more intense once ignited. Saying the difference is about arsonists is a lie.”

        Insisting something is true, using guesswork as evidence.

      • Loydo writes

        The ONLY differences this year are record heat and record dry,

        And given the rainfall is increasing over the long term and the evaporation rate is decreasing, that is a weather condition and not a climate condition. Sometimes the ducks line up for fires, Loydo.

      • Loydo “Saying the difference is about arsonists is a lie.” –

        Loydo the next ‘I told you so’ attributor – what’s next, Loydo –

        You know how to cease Australian bush fires ultimately.

  3. It’s about misinformation.

    If they can get people to think it is about climate change then they won’t take out their anger on the officials who allowed the fuel levels to get so high before the drought began.

    If that doesn’t work, get people distracted with the strawman arson since many fires were the result of carelessness rather than malice.

    • Given that higher temperatures usually means lower humidity that encourages combustion. Interesting to note given the hysteria in the media is that Australia has not passed 50 celsius for over 20 years. Oodnadatta in SA being the highest recorded and set in January 1960.

    • “The 1974-75 fires burned 117m ha”
      Actually, your link does not mention these “1974-5 fires”, with good reason. It even says
      “However, the fires that have raged in NSW, Queensland and now Victoria have now destroyed a record area of bushland – almost 6 million hectares since September.”

      The key word is bushland – or more correctly temperate forest. Every year, huge areas of tropical savanna burn in the dry season. An average of nearly 40 million hectares, each year. The 1974-5 season was larger, but did not have much more impact than other years, although there was a more serious echo in the dry areas of western NSW. It is pointless comparing these recurrent events with the hugely destructive forest fires we are now experiencing.

        • Re the spurious claim of unprecedented/record high temperatures. They are nothing new in the Australian context and neither are the bush fires. There has been a campaign to discredit pre 1910 climate records (for obvious reasons) you can’t deny facts like the 435 people died in the 1896 heatwave or the 1851 fires that devastated vast areas of South Australia.
          “The temperature became torrid, and on the morning of the 6th of February 1851, the air which blew down from the north resembled the breath of a furnace. A fierce wind arose, gathering strength and velocity from hour to hour, until about noon it blew with the violence of a tornado. By some inexplicable means it wrapped the whole country in a sheet of flame — fierce, awful, and irresistible.”
          Fire is such an endemic feature that several plant species can’t germinate without it and creatures have evolved/adapted over millennia to benefit from it.
          Have a look at a great recent documentary on Aussie wildlife – Episode one of “Magical Land of Oz” narrated by Barry Humphries (relevant section starts at 47 minutes) It showed a controlled burn. There’s a bird (the Black Kite or Fire Bird to the aboriginals) that makes a great living catching the animals fleeing the flames. This beautiful creature has evolved an additional trick. It takes a burning stick, flies some distance with it then drops it in a fire free area and thereby spreads the fire in the hope of more tasty fare. How dare you!

      • I don’t think you are using the terminology correctly. I understand Australians use “bush” to mean sparsely populated grassland, savannah, scrub brush or forest. A bush fire can refer to a fire in any of those. I am not sure what a bushland fire is or where that term comes from. However, a forest fire is likely a subset of a bush fire. I have not seen any breakdown of the current fires by biome. Perhaps some Aussie readers could set me straight on what is burning and how it is refered to?

        • “I don’t think you are using the terminology correctly. “
          The Daily Mirror (a British tabloid) is being inexact, would you believe. The current fires are in the eucalypt forests and neighboring land.

          The main distinction is the seasonal aspect. Forests are there permanently, until they aren’t. The savanna fires burn off the growth of the previous wet season, to be replaced by new growth next year.

          • Nick you would be aware that the eucalypt forests of Australia regenerate and grow back to maturity within one person’s lifetime (3 score + 10 years) after being completely killed off by bushfire.

            Even as we’re discussing the current situation, the bushland that was at the scorched-earth epicentre of the 2009 Black Saturday tragedy has now grown back to the extent that it is now again regarded as dangerous. 10 years is all it took.

            And can you believe that locals there report that NOTHING has been done in recent time to reduce the regrown fuel load there.

            Australian governments’ management of bushlands in recent times is redolent of the same government scientific bungling that saw the introduction of the cane toad to the Queensland cane plantations (and consequently, to whole of northern Australia)

        • Bush. North America (U.S.A.)- Wildland or vegetation. Urban Interface – that area where man developed buildings/homes/ranches meet the dominate landscape ‘wildland = bush’

          • The US has multiple types of Forest but the difference between the Eastern pine forest and the Western pine forest it in the Eastern forest a tree falls down in less than ten years it broke down so much it’s not good fuel. In the Western forest that not true, both need fire to stay healthy, the Western forest needs it much more often, nature prairie need fire often or else the woody plants take over. Lastly that also true for Charparel, suppressing fire period is a bad idea, allowing fuel load to build up is a bad idea, having anything flammable with a hundred feet from your house I’d a bad idea, is it a wonder whole neighborhoods burn when they are ten feet apart, or when you build in the forest or brush. The native praire wood burn off ever spring(normal started from a trash fire, that who you use to get rid of the trash, a burning barrel) when I was a child, it was not a problem. Houses had big yards the fuel load was low and the grass burn. Sixty year later that small patch of prairie is now a mass of small popular and willow, with a house right in it good luck with that, in this case it one house but if you were to multiply that by a hundred or a thousand even in wet Minnesota that would be a problem. Unfortunately that the norm today not the execption, and yet the useful idiot blame it on climate change. As Ron White puts it “you can’t fix stupid” and from some comments on this blog I see a lot of stupid. Oh by the way my grandfather home place was in the middle of a jack pine grove and the was only one tree within a hundred feet from the house barn and grainery. As a child I often wondered why, as and adult I understand perfectly.

          • Oh by the way Jack Pine can only release their seeds from the cone with fire, funny there is a tree in wet Minnesota that need fire to survive, you know you don’t see many Jack pines anymore.


      • 1974–1975 Northern Territory Buschfeuer Northern Territory 450.000 km²
        1974–1975 Western Australia Buschfeuer Western Australien 290.000 km²
        1974–1975 South Australia Buschfeuer South Australia 170.000 km²

        https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buschfeuer_in_Australien

        1974/75 – The severest season for perhaps 30 years in the far west with 3,755,000ha burnt, 50,000 stock lost and 10,170km of fencing destroyed. 1.5 million ha were burnt in the Cobar Shire in mid-December and 340,000ha in the Balranald fire. The Moolah-Corinya fire burnt 1,117,000ha and was the largest fire put out by Bush firefighters. Its perimeter was over 1,000 km.
        http://australiasevereweather.com/fires/history.htm

      • “Actually, your link does not mention these “1974-5 fires”, with good reason.”

        Perhaps you should read the whole article instead of skimming the first paragraph.

        “Summer of 1974-75

        New South Wales was the scene of widespread devastation in the 1970s with a horror summer in 1974-75 in the state’s far-west.

        While only three lives were lost, 15 per cent of Australia’s physical landmass sustained extensive damage, according to Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience.

        Around 50,000 stock were lost and 10,170km of fencing destroyed.

        The areas affected included Cobar Shire, Balranald, Glendale and regions around the Lower Hunter.

        The overall damage cost was estimated at $5 million, which equated to roughly around 117 million hectares.”

        • Yes, sorry, I missed that last bit. They start out describing a fire that did occur, in far-west NSW. Three people were killed (I have heard 6), 50000 stock lost etc. And they list the districts, which are a small part of NSW. But the at the end, they throw in the 117 M Ha. That is the size of Texas plus California, and a lot larger than all NSW. They are obviously throwing in the regular savanna fires of NT, WA and Qld, but don’t say so.

          One obvious contradiction – a fire that burned 117 million hectares but did just $5 million damage?

          • Different days Nick.

            Rebuilding Darwin in the same year only cost $150M

            http://guides.naa.gov.au/records-about-northern-territory/part1/chapter6/6.6.aspx

            “Over the next three years, the Commission let contracts worth more than $150 million and coordinated the construction and repair of more than 2,500 homes as well as other construction projects. The Commission wound up on 12 April 1978, by which time it had built 1,812 new houses, restored 425 houses, built 141 new flats, and restored 128 flats. It had also built 360 home units for the Department of Defence”

          • Half the population (13Million) and a lot less rural development and buildings. Take the current fires and exclude tourist and holiday towns and see how many buildings got burnt 🙂

            If you wanted to do that analysis properly you would need maps of the areas burnt back in 1974 and see what would have been burnt today.

  4. AW,

    Thanks for the report about continuing obfuscation and deceit by the CAGW group. They seek mass delusion, it seems. Your report will stand the test of time, their deceit and incompetence shall not.

  5. I’ve been making comments since September in online news articles not to link bushfires to climate change. Easy to debunk for the same reasons as above, but even if you still believed, you would shut up just to not goad even one potential arsonist to feel that fulfilling their desires would be morally correct.

    But these alarmists are so religious, or selfish, that they couldn’t care that a degree cooler globe would make less difference than one less firebug.

  6. Sure they are not tourists, journalists, think tank observers, CIA agents, KGB agents, MI5 agents or Wattsupwiththat observers? And maybe they order the onion rings with a salad? Btw I eat meat almost every day and never feel ashamed.

  7. In some ways, I wouldn’t mind if the arsonists started fires on a cool, high humidity, low wind day to burn the bush. The Australian bush must burn, the arsonists are just a catalyst for the process.
    They unfortunately chose the opposite weather, and cause devastation.

  8. In fact, if there was more CO2 the fires would have been far less intense as fire and CO2 do not mix. Explain that one dumbasses!

    • You would need more than 0.04% CO2 to put a fire out. In fact, IIRC, you would need to displace almost all O2 at ~21% to have any effect as well as removing sources of ignition. If CO2 was present in air in sufficient concentration to smother a fire, we’d all be dead. It’s not hot enough normally for fires to spontaneously start, though people believe 0.04% *IS* causing the conditions for that to happen.

      • If CO2 was present in air in sufficient concentration to smother a fire, we’d all be dead.

        On the plus side, though, we’d have stopped man-made climate change!

  9. “Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.” ― Groucho Marx
    The wildfires were mostly started by humans – accidentally, deliberately and in some cases maliciously (over 100 arrested) some by climate zealots trying to teach us a lesson – but the loonies believe they are CAUSED by global warming/climate change.
    Dry Eucalyptus leaves burn like a fuel fire – very nasty – allowing this stuff to build up on the ground should be a criminal offence – instead removing it is a criminal offence – enforced by artificial intelligence and satellite photography – big brother really is watching you if you live in Australia.
    But according to the alarmists the Australian government haven’t done enough to combat climate change – what are they supposed to do ? What if they had completely given up on fossil fuels (and totally destroyed their economy) it might have made 0.2% difference to global CO2 emissions – so how much more might the government have done to prevent the fires ?
    Had they done so, what would power the fire trucks, water bombers and rescue efforts.
    If you believe any amount of CO2 reduction by the Australian government would have made an erg of difference to the current fire storm – the you are living in a green fantasy land.
    I suggest they make “climate” a juristic person, pass laws ordering it to change – and if it fails to do so. prosecute it to the maximum extent of the law – if necessary throw the climate in prison.
    There how’s that for an idiotic proposal that makes just as much sense as what the alarmists are calling for.
    The average schmuck is too dumb to apply logic.
    Emotional insanity prevails.

  10. I have an ad below the Josh cartoon with a poll similar to his. Stuffed up the screen capture, though.

    It has three options, that the bushfires were due to climate change, just ahead of don’t know and then arson not far behind. There is also a prise from Woolworths so just for Australians, I’m guessing.

    How much money is there for CC propaganda?

  11. The first sentence contains a false statement that has been generated as ‘fake news’ by stating that over 180 people had been arrested for arson, the actual number is 24. The 183 number includes people who got tickets for discarding lit cigarettes for example.

    • Can you show us where you have corrected alarmist claims that the fires are a result of climate change?

      If not, piss off.

        • Still hiding from a “no” answer I see.

          I have asked Phil many times to show that he is not just an alarmist troll, but he refuses out of necessity. Phil likes to pretend he is simply after facts and truth ,but nothing and nobody could be further away from both.

    • “The NSW Police Force has taken legal action against more than 180 people for bushfire-related offences since late last year.”

      https://www.police.nsw.gov.au/news/news_article?sq_content_src=%2BdXJsPWh0dHBzJTNBJTJGJTJGZWJpenByZC5wb2xpY2UubnN3Lmdvdi5hdSUyRm1lZGlhJTJGODIyNjQuaHRtbCZhbGw9MQ%3D%3D

      ‘Taken legal action against” would seem to indicate arrests made. What the initial charges were is unknown as far as I can tell. Anyone who throws a cigarette into the dry brush during a heat wave could very well be seen as intentionally starting a fire, or at the least malicious, and could have initially been charged with arson. So how do you know this is actually false?

      • “‘Taken legal action against” would seem to indicate arrests made.”
        No, it doesn’t. The document says what it means:
        “legal action – which ranges from cautions through to criminal charges – has been taken against 183 people “

      • from that police report:

        Penalties relating to bushfires under the NSW Crimes Act, the Rural Fires Act, and Rural Fires Regulation include:

        – Damaging property with the intention of endangering life – up to 25 years imprisonment;
        – Manslaughter – up to 25 years imprisonment;
        – Starting a bushfire and being reckless as to its spread – up to 21 years imprisonment;
        – Lighting a fire when a total fire ban is in place – up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a $5500 fine;
        – Not putting out a fire that you have lit – up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a $5500 fine;
        – Failing to comply with a bush fire hazard reduction notice – up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a $5500 fine;
        – Light or use a tobacco product within 15metres of any stack of grain, hay corn, straw or any standing crop, dry grass or stubble field – up to a $5500 fine.

        In addition to that, I would think that there might be a strong chance of being lynched by the locals.
        Does anyone think that setting fire to Australia is going to get Australians on their side?

        • Not this one!
          People who light bushfires are ranked lower than journalists and politicians.

          “Lower than a snakes armpit, and from there they can free fall!

          The Greens are widely despised …

    • “The 183 number includes people who got tickets for discarding lit cigarettes for example.”

      And the police caught 100% of the people who were discarding lit cigarettes or were otherwise careless? So none of the non-arson fires were caused by human carelessness rather than deliberate arson? They were all a result of “climate change?’

    • There isn’t one Australian adult who is not aware of the dangers of throwing out a lit cigarette in such conditions. A charge of deliberate arson might not be upheld by a court, but the huge number of fires lit suggests a strange surge in accidental fires.

      • Australian fire ban laws are absolute. You can be charged for dropping a cigarette butt on a city pavement, park, or even in your back yard. Much more common than smoking in the underbrush.

        • You can be charged for it but it will not be counted as arson (unless admitted too). An Australian paper had an article on how police would determine intent using an example of a fire on the side of the road would be assumed to be accidental from discarding a cigarette. Came across as advice to hide the real intent.

          Here in Adelaide, a man has been charged for lighting fire by setting of a firework outside of his car window. He denies he was driving his car at the time so unlikely to admit intention to start the fire rather than negligence.

        • Charged for what? Non brushfire-related littering? Attempted burning of pavement?

          “During a Total Fire Ban – During a Total Fire Ban (TFB), any person who disposes of burning tobacco, or a burning cigarette, cigar or match in circumstances that is likely to set fire to the bush; including by throwing it from a vehicle, could face a fine of $25,000 and/or 12 months in jail.”

          https://www.dfes.wa.gov.au/safetyinformation/fire/bushfire/Pages/cigarettebutts.aspx

        • The problem with these laws is policing. Written words that form a policy is useless if that policy cannot be acted on. We have policy in place and policing that actively prevents people from speeding. How much damage is done to a country when someone drives at 10kph over a speed limit? What about bushfires? One weapon that could be used to a total media blackout. A lot of these firebugs start fires for the media attention it brings.

    • ** The 183 number includes people who got tickets for discarding lit cigarettes for example.**
      Those are all offenses. You are trying to cover for them?

  12. I came directly to WATTS from Breitbart, where I saw a report that “800 gallons of emergency beer had been delivered to a town surrounded by Australian bushfires”. Piss on it! Don’t snip me, I actually think their strategy is to drink the beer and, you know, employee their personal fire hoses. Always on the cutting edge here at WATTS, but is this a confusing deal or what?

  13. Facebook was right. The statement that “Australian law enforcement has arrested over 180 people for arson” is simply, demonstrably untrue. They didn’t. The NSW police report on which the claim is based said
    “Since Friday 8 November 2019, legal action – which ranges from cautions through to criminal charges – has been taken against 183 people – including 40 juveniles – for 205 bushfire-related offences.

    Of note:

    24 people have been charged over alleged deliberately-lit bushfires
    53 people have had legal actions for allegedly failing to comply with a total fire ban, and
    47 people have had legal actions for allegedly discarding a lighted cigarette or match on land.”

    “legal action – which ranges from cautions through to criminal charges” does not mean arrested. And failing to comply with a total fire ban (eg home BBQ) or discarding a lighted cigarette is not arson.

    • Yes, but FB weren’t “fact checking” the number of people arrested for arson (vs careless behaviour with fire); they were taking issue with the article’s assertion that it wasn’t climate change that was the cause of the severity of the fires.

        • Anthony, I asked Nick on four or five different comments, from one of yesterday’s posts regarding Australians fires, a single question. He can rant and rave all day long but won’t pay someone the respect of answering a question.

          He thinks that his is the only opinion that matters.

          In regards to who or how many fires were started and how, when you are affected by it and ‘in the moment’ you don’t care. It will come out later hopefully. As an example though, I spoke to a second in command firey a few days ago, stopped him in the street actually to thank him for the efforts of himself and and his crew, he had been working long hours.

          I asked him about a couple of local fires that had come up on our fire app, he said that one was started by a fencer out in the paddock doing some welding. They think that the other one was from a campfire that wasn’t extinguished properly and had reignited. A total fire ban was in place at the time these fires occurred and both were a couple of kilometers from our 300 hectare 87mw solar farm. Fortunately they were brought under control before they got there.

          Another thing that amuses me is that with all this talk of drought and heat, that people think that it’s the same right across Australia! We are most definitely in drought here and it’s been a harsh one this year but it’s happened before and it will happen again. Up in the ‘top end’ of Australia in The Northern Territory, three thousand kilometers from here as the crow flies, they had more than 560 millimeters of rain in one day! For the Brits that’s more than
          22 inches, and it’s been raining for days there. The monsoon season has arrived along with the first of the cyclones in WA, more to come just like every other year. Nothing to see here. The remnants of those weather patterns should hit here before next weekend so we will hopefully get some rain here too.

          It is ‘normal weather’, good with the bad here in Australia but I am grateful to those who put their hands in their pockets to those to help those who have suffered property loss during this terrible fire season, regardless of their ideology.

    • Nick

      Please actually read the supposed “fact check”.

      It has nothing to do with the actual number of arrests, which is utterly irrelevant, as I am sure you know.

      As usual, you attempt to divert attention away from the real issues.

    • BTW Nick

      Go and actually read the Breitbart article. It actually says:

      Drawing on data from NSW Bureau of Crime and Statistics and Research, the newspaper reported that “183 people have been charged or cautioned for bushfire-related offences since November 8, and 24 arrested for deliberately starting bushfires.”

      So the “fact check” is totally wrong, using your logic

      • From the article:

        “Australian law enforcement has arrested over 180 people for arson in connection with the nation’s raging bushfires, as alarmists try to pin the blazes on “climate change.”

        All of the 183 alleged arsonists have been arrested since the start of this year’s bushfire season, the Australian reported Tuesday, adding that 29 fires were deliberately started in the Shoalhaven region of southeast New South Wales (NSW) in just three months.”

        183 arsonists arrested! WOW!

        Followed by the quote:

        “Drawing on data from NSW Bureau of Crime and Statistics and Research, the newspaper reported that “183 people have been charged or cautioned for bushfire-related offences since November 8, and 24 arrested for deliberately starting bushfires.”

        Hang on a second. That’s not what the headline and opening of the story said.

        I don’t think “alarmist” headlines would treated as gently as breitbart are being treated here because they got the quote right somewhere else in the article, that contradicts the headline claim.

    • Nick, read Ralph Dave Westfall’s post above……

      The real crime here..as I see it….these fires are very common….the damage they cause is astronomical

      Why do they not have an entire fleet of water bomber planes…one fire…this one for sure…would pay for it all
      The Russians ever have super water bombers for fires in Siberia…puts them all out every time

      • I understand the states/territories, who are responsible for bushfire management in Australia, refuses any help with water bombers other than “Elvis” (NSW only). Australia needs to revert back to fuel load hazard reduction practices of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s or have available air-based super tankers that can be deployed and cover difficult to reach areas on the ground. This has been a factor this season where the fire could not be reached before spreading and becoming uncontrolable.

    • Nick must be an alarmist. Discarding a lighted cigarette could very well be arson, or seen by police as arson. And “legal action against’ obviously does indicate that arrests, or at least charges and a court date were initially made or given. And what legal action is taken is not always what police initially charge.

      Nick disagrees:
      “No, it doesn’t. The document says what it means:
      “legal action – which ranges from cautions through to criminal charges – has been taken against 183 people “

      Apparently Nick believes that a “caution” is legal action taken against a person., as if “legal action” is a cop cautioning a person not to do something again.

      • Actually that’s the NSW police description, apparently they believe that a ‘caution’ is legal action taken against a person.

  14. How do they explain the mid-70’s fires that burned 15% of Oz? 12 times as many hectares as today’s fires!

    • Lets not forget the big one in 1851 that burnt 5 million hectares, one quarter of the state of Victoria, most of it in one day, much of it only burning out as it reached the coast! Well not entirely, a sailing ship about 20 miles offshore had it’s sails catch fire under ember attack.

  15. It’s maddening to see Michael Mann ambulance-chase every disaster and linking it to climate change, without showing any actual data that correlates global warming to increased wildfires or increased extreme storms.

  16. Mickey Mann’s burning NSW image is very odd,

    Despite all the fires, the place presumably burnt behind the fire is still bright green

    Photoshop , anyone !!

    And why is a US operative/democ-rat shill trying to tell Australians how to vote.

    A big .. “go jump in the lake” to you Mickey Man,

  17. The main contributor to Australia’s drought and subsequent bushfires has been a record, strongly positive Indian Ocean Dipole, the Indian Ocean version of ENSO. The Indian Ocean provides most of Australia’s rainfall by area, and when it’s positive (from Australia’s perspective) East Africa gets flooding rain while Australia has drought. The dipole flipped to negative in the past few days, which means that conditions are in place for the drought to end. With the drought comes increased risk of bushfires, exacerbated by government policies which have locked up large areas of forest in parks. Logging has largely been banned and the states have cut funding for park management, so care and maintenance of the highly flammable forest is dramatically reduced.
    Historically, drought is a dominant feature of the Australian landscape, and multi-proxy scientific evidence points, in most cases, to the Indian Ocean Dipole as the culprit.
    For some perspective and context, it’s a well documented scientific fact that Australia experienced a 100-year long drought commencing at only 4,200 years before present. It’s well established in the scientific literature that drought has been the cause of the collapse of many ancient civilizations including, for example, the Mayans. the Old Kingdom of Egypt and the various civilizations that have occupied the Eastern Mediterranean.
    Call it ‘climate change’ if you wish, but climate variability is closer to the truth, and its been going on for millennia without any help from CO2. My long term concern for Australia is that drought may well be the natural default position for large parts of the continent, and that areas now used for agriculture and pastoral purposes may have to be abandoned unless government does something smart in terms of a national water distribution and management strategy.

      • You’re not wrong Patrick, more than 560 millimeters of rain fell in the top end yesterday, that’s more than 22 inches! They’ve had heavy rain for days now. The first of the regular annual cyclones have started to arrive now too, the one off the north coast of WA.

        Looks like we’ve got a chance of some rain in NSW in a few days time, fingers crossed.

        • We had a bit of rain last night where I am in NSW, Gosford. Been smoky all week, still a bit so. It is much much cooler today however. I am sure you see the media coverage, the SMH doesn’t have enough space for the number of stories. Most pictures of fire displayed were taken at night, has a more dramatic visual effect. 57,000 Germans protesting and demanding Siemens to pull out of Adani. No single tonne of coal has been extracted yet let alone burnt.

          • I understand the coverage, unfortunately much of it is about promoting the CAGW cause. Many of them are more focused on their own ‘I told you so moment’ to even have a discussion about the ‘truth’. They know absolutely nothing about Australia yet they report based solely on their own opinion. They have sensationalised us. Still, the publicity has at least prompted a generous influx of donations. They’re trying to outdo each other now but attacking the Australian mining magnate for his $70 million donation, seriously what’s with that.

            I take my hat off to the pensioner who chucks in $5 dollars at the local supermarket fundraiser, it’s not a competition. It’s a bit funny too, there’s only 25 million people in the whole of Australia, at this rate they’ll be ‘redistributing the wealth’ in an unintended manner. I wonder who and how they’re going to distribute the donations. Hope that someone can keep the bastards honest.

            We live in Gulgong, 30 k from Mudgee and 300 k northeast of Sydney. We’ve had very little rain but it’s coming, I’ve been watching it on the weather app, teasing us. Couple a days.

  18. Dear Facebook,

    Don’t let yourself become another laughingstock like Wikipedia on the subject of climate change. Wankerpedia, as it’s now known by about half the U.S. electorate is so called because they tolerated and encouraged totalitarian “fact” checkers and like-minded gate keepers like William M. Connolley, also one of the founders of the RealClimate.org website. Connolley controlling all CAGW content for Wikipedia was not a proud moment for those wankers. And it’s the primary reason why I will never believe anything Wikipedia has to say on any controversial topic. Nor will I ever donate a single penny to them, though they beg mercilessly.

    If that’s the reputation you want for Facebook, that is your right as a private company in a mostly free marketplace. But get ready to lose the respect of about half the people. To my mind, to deny half the people any voice or opportunity to dissent without YOUR editorial thumb on the scale would rightfully lose you the respect of everyone, not just the intelligent half. If you continue down this path, never again whine or opine on the subject “fake” news. On the other hand, if you want to be a credible, well-rounded resource for your clients, maybe you should research the Connolley fiasco on Wankerpedia, and understand how Connolley’s model of total control lives on even after he has retired, like-minded toadies and NPCs maintaining the same level of gate keeping to this very day. Please eschew that model, and dismiss your oh-so-eager little fact checkers. Or get ready for some labels, such as Wankerbook or Fakebook, or worse.

  19. Just replace climate change with weather wobble errr wiggle err waggle or, I suppose it IS more of a weather wrangle… 🙁

  20. “Then there’s the data from Australia’s BoM. Rainfall over the past 60 years has been wetter.”

    Maybe I’m being pedantic, but are there really degrees of wetness in rainfall? 🙂

  21. I’d like to see all climate change temperature graphs show 30-year averages at each point. Then have the climate models show postdicted 30-year averages.

  22. What really caused the bush fires are all those blue years that were anomalously wet.. and there were a lot of them since 1995. No rain, no bush growth. Couple that with forest mismanagement and bingo. You can’t blame all this on one summer.

  23. As to the drought conditions in Australia, the now decaying IOD positive phase was the main factor for dryness inland, as it has been for similar conditions in the past, together the solar induced Stratospheric Sudden Warming strongest event recorded.
    With low levels of moisture inland surface temperatures can only rise. With the monsoons now starting, the heat traveling from the north is beginning to decrease as is the moisture increasing as the IOD moves more towards a neutral phase and perhaps toward a negative phase.
    Nothing complicated here, just don’t ignore or forget to include all relevant factors into the equation.

    • Having now read the link to the Michael Mann interview and particularly his comments towards the end regarding the the IOD and that climate change might actually be making the Indian Ocean dipole stronger, more likely to be in the positive phase, illuminates how he can twist the facts to suit his political bias.
      If he was interested in presenting scientific balance rather than playing politics, then he would have acknowledged that the IOD positive phase brings increased precipitation to Africa as it had been doing recently with torrential rains there this past year.
      Lets see what he has to say next when we get a particularly strong IOD negative phase, especially in conjunction with a strong La Nina event, and we on this side of the IO find ourselves barely able to keep our heads above the flood waters covering large parts of the landscape.

      • well exactly…it wasn’t that long ago that global warming caused so much rain…the sea level fell…LOL

  24. Just my 2 cents worth, re the Arrested or not Arrested discussion, I found this,
    Quote,
    “According to The Australian, “Police arrested 183 people for lighting bushfires across Queensland, NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania in the past few months. NSW police data shows 183 people have been charged or cautioned for bushfire-related offences since November 8, and 24 arrested for deliberately starting bushfires.”

    This claim was later revised to 183 people who Australian authorities have taken “legal action” against. Still, that’s 183 people who have acted illegally resulting in catastrophic bushfires, displacement, property loss, and deaths of both people and animals.”

    I’d humbly suggest that any “early adopters” of the story had picked up on The Australians use of the phrase “arrested” in a colloquial “newspaper language” sense of having been at least in contact with the police, and were using that phrase in the same colloquial sense, rather than deliberately seeking to mis-represent the story.
    The Sun website currently still has the “ more than 180 arrested for arson” line.

  25. After an exchange with Nick Stokes on an earlier post on WUWT on this topic and given the heated exchanges here about the “183 arson arrests” I went to the Australian Government, Australian Institute of Criminology website, particularly “The Bushfire Arson Bulletin” , particularly the ‘the number of fires and who lit them’ which cites Bryant C,2008,” Understanding bushfires:trends in deliberate vegetation fires in Australia.Technical and background paper number 27.Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology.http://www.aic.gov.au/publications/current series/tbsp/21-40/tbp.027.aspx
    Figure 1 : Percentage of bushfires by cause averaged over fire agency and year.
    Suspicious 37%
    Deliberate 13%
    Accidental 35%
    Natural 6%
    Reignition/spot 5%
    Other 4%
    The Australian Productivity Commission estimated that between 2001 and 2007 there were an average of 54,000 fires a year in Australia.
    The Bulletin then continued,” This agréés quite closely with the average of nearly 52,000 fires per year calculated by the Australian Institute of Criminology ( Bryant 2008) using data from fire agencies from 1995-06 to 2005-06.It is estimated that nearly 50% of fires are either deliberately lit on suspicious in origin as shown in Figure1”
    The conclusion is that 75% of bushfires above have a human source ,deliberate or accidental.
    However only 6% have a natural source.
    Now back to the central point, there is no scientific basis to claim that climate change causes or exacerbates bushfires, as Dr. Spencer so ably argues.

    • “However only 6% have a natural source.”
      That is a criminology source, and refers to fires that were investigated. They also say
      “Some caution should be taken when considering these figures. Just over 40 percent of vegetation fires across Australia do not have a cause assigned by the responding fire agency. Furthermore, inconsistencies exist between and within agencies in recording data. For example, different agencies may have different thresholds as to when they consider a fire to be deliberate, suspicious or unknown.”

      If 40% do not have a cause assigned, you can’t say that only 6% are natural.

      • **If 40% do not have a cause assigned, you can’t say that only 6% are natural.**
        Full of it as usual Nick.
        6% are natural, the others have been assigned a category that is NOT natural. Read again.

  26. It’s been pointed out that “arsonist” started/caused many of the fires.
    The number of “arsonist” has been argued to support the meme that the fires have been caused by “climate change”, which is, of course caused my Man’s (and only Man’s) CO2 emissions.
    So, I guess, instead of CO2 being able to put out fires, it must be possible of causing lightening and spontaneous combustion.
    (Maybe that explains Mann’s reactions to anybody who disagrees with him? He refuses to exhale CO2 and the build up ….?)

  27. Earlier I posted a twitter comment from NSW Police Force 5 Jan 2020 that reads:
    “Police have taken legal action against 183 people for more than 200 bushfire-related offences since November last year.”
    Therefore I doubt we can take the Victoria police spokeswoman’s comment as:
    currently no intelligence = there is no arson

    I was taken to task by Nick Stokes that this had no reference to Victoria.
    I see no flaw in the logic. If there are a number of people responsible for fires in Queensland and NSW it would be highly unlikely that there were NO INCIDENTS OF ARSON in Victoria.

    The statement is therefore true:”currently no intelligence” CANNOT THEREFORE MEAN AN UNEQUIVOCAL “there is no arson”
    Simple logic. QED.

  28. Anthony

    They The scope of the fires was related to arson, pure and simple.”

    Great post ….IMHO

    From the Dog House..lol

  29. When did climate become a “30 year period centered on 2017 assuming recent rate of warming continues”? Sounds like using the future, via linear extrapolation.

  30. Providing that he Court cases are reported it will be of interest t to hear what the defendants have to say as their excuse. I wonder how many will admit to starting them to highlight their cause of trying “”To save the Planet.

    It will also of interest to her of the sentence handed down from the Magistrates, some of whom also favour the Green cause.

    MJE VK5ELL

  31. The satellite imagery shown with the Pielke tweet is probably “photoshopped”.
    In science work, maps are traditionally marked with source, date, scale and north point. On this images, all are absent. So far as I can find, the images are from “The Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission has been used to image the fires. The Sentinel-2 satellites each carry just one instrument – a high-resolution multispectral imager with 13 spectral bands. The smoke, flames and burn scars can be seen clearly in the image shown here, which was captured on 31 December 2019. The large brownish areas depict burned vegetation and provide an idea of the size of the area affected by the fires here – the brown ‘strip’ running through the image has a width of approximately 50 km and stretches for at least 100 km along the Australian east coast. Credit: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2019), processed by ESA, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO”
    The text added to the image is unreadable, too much jpg compression, and I cannot even place the image to coincide with any Google Map data by the shape of the coastline. The smoke does not seem to align with the fires everywhere, some fires seem smokeless. It is, in fact, a shocker of an image by scientific standards, poor quality.
    (Although I am no longer active, I have been an official Judge for the Australian Photographic Society and I have been doing digital image manipulations since 1992, so my comments are backed by experience. I my decades of mineral exploration science, we used satellite imagery interpretation starting with Landsat in the early 1980s. However, not much progress can be made here without the original image at high resolution. There remains a possibility that the image is untouched, but proof is not present in the image shown.)

  32. There’s no reason to think a warmer world is drier and more drought-prone. Warmer climates of the past were wetter climates.

    Regional climate models are no more predictive than global climate models. There are no objective grounds whatever to suppose that any drought, dry years, wet years, bush fires, or anything else is CO2-induced.

    Most climate scientists know this. They know that regional climate models are worthless. Even the IPCC says that global models are worthless for regions smaller than continental scales (and worthless at global scales, too, but they won’t dare admit that).

    The folks at Climatefeedback are lying righteously. They know their narrative is wrong, but the lie has been repeated so relentlessly that it has moral standing, even though it is scientifically vacuous.

  33. I was in NSW Australia a few years ago, staying in a self catering squat, all of a sudden the house caught fire. I looked at my plate, a half eaten steak told me all I needed to know – it was my food that caused the fire.
    My wife reached for the fire extinguisher – ‘NO CO2’ I shouted, ‘BIN THE BURGER’
    She understood immediately, threw all of our meaty foodstuffs into the bin

    I wrestled with the flames but it was a losing battle

    ‘THE PLANE TICKETS’

    The missus leaped into action, the flames engulfed me, she grabbed the flight tickets, the plane tickets went into the carbon offset pile of paperwork. Then..quiet. The flames retreated and I realised I had been saved.
    Thank heavens for quick thinking Green magic

  34. Nick Stokes,
    With your keen eye for misleading statements, would you care to comment on Michael Mann’s words a little after 4.15 minutes into the video interview that can be viewed by clicking on the Real News video? The Mann words include “… loss of life and property in vast expanses of rain forest …”
    Rain forest seems hard to burn, even if it is the area of the fires. The main recollection I have about rain forest burns is Binna Burra Lodge, reported to have been lit by kids playing with cigarettes. No lives lost, 13 buildings burned and very little actual rain forest.
    Over to you and CSIRO. What area of rain forest in Australia has burned and how many (if any) lives have been lost? Geoff S

    • Geoff,
      One that seems to have burnt is Mt Drummer in Victoria. The forests around Putty and Eden to Mallacoota, and around places like Combienbar are normally pretty wet. But yes, I think the large majority of forest burned would not be true rain forest.

  35. With reference to the 183 arrests or warnings, we have people and most of the media in Australia trying to downplay ARSON and elevate “climate change”. The “Guardian” made an issue of telling us that most of the charges were earlier in the year and also pushing “climate change”.
    The Australians are continually fed the climate BS so that is all most of them understand.
    I made a few comments on an article in the Sydney Morning Herald and they were censored out or they are still in “moderation”. Most of the commentary in the Herald are by believers that the fires are increasing due to “climate change”. They have a huge problem there with misinformation. Itried posting Dr. Spencer’s post there.

    • We have Elton John, famous sports celebrities, actors, commenters we even have protests in London all calling for action on climate change because (Global) climate change is the driver in these fires in Australia, apparently. The Australia media is strewn with article upon article attributing these fires to climate change and a direct result of the lack of “action” the current Federal Govn’t leader has shown. Forget the fact fire management is a state level issue for the moment, people really do believe the current federal PM’s inaction CAUSED these fires. The scientifically infantile reasoning behind this is truly mind boggling!

  36. My dear Anthony… I’ve been a visitor to these pages for many years, and truly admire your tenacity and diligence, but honestly… what did you think would happen if you cited Breitbart – seriously… Breit-Fecking-Bart… as a source?

    Breitbart – famously and unashamedly alt-Right, home of every mindless red-neck numbskull half-baked made up conspiracy, Steve Bannon… say it again… STEVE FASCIST RAPIST ALCOHOLIC BANNON… and you want to be treated seriously? Exactly how naïve are you? Did you really come down with the last shower? Could you not, with the vast intellect at your disposal, forecast exactly what the response would be? BREITBART! The very skin on your face should burst into flames with the shame of not having realised the most blindingly obvious consequence of citing BREITBART… just the very oxymoronic concept of putting the words “Breitbart” and “article” in the same sentence and expecting a considered and worthy response is utterly, mind-crushingly, imbecilic and cretinous beyond my ability to express it in words.

    It doesn’t matter how strong your argument is, how telling, cogent and pretty your graphs are, how unimpeachable your sources are, how many letters you have after your name and how incontrovertible is your evidence, you’ve taken all of that and thrown it down the piss stained shitty toilet that is Breitbart…

    Breitbart… you proudly display the maxim of your resolve at the top of the page… a quote from Andrew Breitbart. With that single act, you devalue everything that comes after it – the scholarly analyses, the in-depth of research, the calling out of the whole sorry climate change fiasco – and render it utterly pointless. If you don’t know why, then first of all, shame on you, and second, do you not have the faintest inkling of how this all works? Why the sceptics are being disparaged, sidelined, ignored and ridiculed? Why the Eco-Taliban are winning, and why you are powerless to anything about it, and why, ultimately, you will fail and they will win? I can tell you why, and many others can too – but until you can work it out for yourself, and do something about it, it’s pointless to continue. You may as well run up the white flag, concede defeat, close down WUWT and spend the rest of your life doing something useful, like a cat sanctuary. It’s a crying shame that the blindingly obvious falsehoods of those you oppose and do battle with will continue unchecked because you have hitched the wagon of the sceptics to the alt-right/Bannon/Breitbart/Trump kakistocrats (look it up, for Gods sake), and now all of us who haven’t fallen for it have been tarred with the same brush. Thanks for that, by the way.

    You’re quite used to the Australian habit of plain speaking, I expect, so I’ll try to put my final comments in terms that you might understand. You’re a twat. Educated beyond your intelligence. You’ve got your head stuck up your arse. Got it yet? Don’t bother replying, I won’t read it and I won’t answer. They won. You lost. They were smarter than you. Wrong, but smarter, and that’s what counts. I thought you were smarter than them. I was wrong, you were wrong, and they won, because they understood how to win, and you did not, but dragged the rest of us down with you, because you got it wrong. Here’s your medal.

    • re: ” famously and unashamedly alt-Right, home of every mindless red-neck numbskull half-baked made up conspiracy, ”

      Compared to upper-crust, advanced-degree Rachel ‘Pat” Maddow who milked a ‘theory’ for a couple years that Russia affected and colluded with Trump to ‘win’ the 2016 election?

      • The NYT, WaPo, CNN et al conducted witch hunts and warlock trials, not limited to those forced by Obama spied, Clinton colluded, Biden obstructed, DNC denied, etc., are supported by a progressive (i.e. dwindling) consensus.

    • Breitbart… you proudly display the maxim of your resolve at the top of the page… a quote from Andrew Breitbart. With that single act, you devalue everything that comes after it – the scholarly analyses, the in-depth of research, the calling out of the whole sorry climate change fiasco – and render it utterly pointless.”

      Oh what a load of nonsense.

  37. Climate feedback said, “In the key take-away they cite the year as the “driest on record” while also mentioning “dry and windy weather patterns”.”

    But the reason the fires have been so bad THIS year is less important than whether they were avoidable under more normal climatic circumstances in future years.

    I suspect not; I suspect that by allowing the fuel load to grow the forests, especially the fenced-off Parks, the green BAU policy would create tinderboxes, leading to much-increased average wildfire acreage burnings in the coming ten years vs. the prior ten years, even though no one year would be nearly as bad as this one.

    This is how to evaluate policies—not by outlier years’ losses, but by average years’ losses. (Unfortunately, we don’t have the figures for the tutue. But it stands to reason that tinderboxes will all in time be devastated. A better policy would be to prevent forests from reaching tinderbox status, even if it involves making them less lush and/or extensive by 33% or so.)

  38. OK, maybe I’m stupid or something, but how the HECK can you get the average of a 30 year period, centered on 2017, when you still have 12 years left for that period?

  39. Found a twenty five year old article that had some interesting information…seems the aborigines in Australia burned the bush on a very regular basis…

    “ Historical accounts record that Aborigines burnt extensively and often. Although they had little capacity for fire suppression there seems little doubt that they had a very extensive knowledge about when and where particular areas would burn and the biological consequences of their burning. They burnt some areas early in the fire season, before fires would spread extensively, to protect them from fires later in the season. When the weather conditions were appropriate they burnt to promote the flowering and fruiting of certain edible plants. They used fire extensively for warfare, for providing access through thick vegetation, for hunting, for warmth, and for protection against snakes and insects. Their traditions, it seems, did not value areas that were left unburnt for a long time, for much of the burning was done with no specific objective in mind other than `to clean up the country’; an attitude and practice that still remains with Aboriginal people living in inland Australia today.”

    https://www.abs.gov.au/Ausstats/abs@.nsf/0/6C98BB75496A5AD1CA2569DE00267E48

    • Thanks so much for this link Steve. The thing that makes it so brilliant is the fact that is truthful. That information about our indigenous aboriginals hasn’t been embellished by unnecessary ‘woke’ language. This report could be valid today in regard to land management and shows in fact that this is exactly what has been lacking.

      Definitely worth a read!

  40. The attribution of dryness, the critical evidence of a [catastrophic] [anthropogenic] climate change, is dependent on historical records that suggest natural causes, human choices (e.g. proximity, environmentalism) that correlate with progressive risk, flora fauna that are regularly planned and cannibalized by Nature, and an insufficient time-frame to assess anthropogenic climate variability. The attribution of cause and effect remains one of the scientifically weak, missing, links of the quasi-scientific prediction that fuels Green investor growth and hopes for redistributive change (e.g. capital and control). This latest scheme is reminiscent of the CFL coup laundered through collusion of industry and environmentalists, but with not just progressive prices, but measurable collateral damage. That said, the occurrence of these fires may not be predictable, but they are expected on a recurring basis, and the risk of human injury and property damage can be mitigated through best practices of conservation and management. These are statistics that can be observed and replicated in the near-frame, not inferred from proxies of debatable significance, or predicted with models (i.e. hypotheses) detached from reality.

  41. Some have mentioned areas of Australia locked up in National Parks. In the 1980s, my company fought hard to have mineral exploration in three particular large areas. Each time, we were repulsed by the then Labor Government, by declaring national parks and inviting listing on the United Nations World Heritage list. Listing does not automatically stop mineral work, just mostly does. So, we became rather wary of the UN.
    What really cheesed us off was the uses subsequently allowed in these areas, two of which were for military training areas while for the other, a military training areaa was created adjacent.
    One has to wonder about the causes of fires when the military go pumping live ammunition of various types into military training areas that are also on or adjacent to world heritage properties.
    I have not yet seen a statistical category of “exploding ammunition” as a cause of fires here, though I consider it a plausible cause.
    The 3 area were at Kakadu NT, Lockhart River north Qld and Shoalwater Bay, central Queensland.
    There could be a fortune locked away in any one of these because of collaboration of Labor Governments with the power-hungry United Nations. Geoff S

    • The ADF was a “source” of the “Black Saturday” fires in 2009 on military land that broke containment. What munitions were used that day I have no idea, tracers would be my first, easy, bet.

  42. The Primary Factors That Have Led to the Current Bushfires

    1. Two exceptionally dry years resulting in extreme drought conditions over much of SE Australia.

    These drought conditions have led to extended periods of exceptionally low humidity and reduced cloud cover. Both these meteorological factors lead to higher than normal day time maximum temperatures.

    2. The build-up of huge fuel loads due to poor forestry management practices.

    Hence, if the current bush fires are a direct result of human-induced climate change then this must mean that droughts in SE Australia have been getting significantly worse since the 1970s when atmospheric CO2 levels started rising.

    https://1.bp.blogspot.com/…/s1600/Raifall_MDBasin.jpg

    The displayed graph shows the rainfall anomalies in the Murray-Darling Basin between 1900 and 2019. It shows that the generally drier conditions between 2000 and 2019 stand in stark contrast to the generally wetter conditions that prevailed between 1970 and 2000. Both of these periods experienced comparable increases in atmospheric CO2 levels i.e. 44 ppm between 1970 and 2000 and 41 ppm between 2000 and 2019.
    Ask yourself the question, why would similar increases in the levels of atmospheric CO2 produce both wetter than normal conditions and dryer than normal conditions in SE Australia? Of course, this can not be true if increasing levels of CO2 are supposedly making drought conditions worse.

    In addition, the displayed graph clearly shows that drought conditions were just as bad, if not worse, before 1947 than they have been since the year 2000. Yet CO2 levels did not start rising significantly until well after WWII. How could this be the case, if droughts are getting worse because of human-induced climate change?

    • The humidity level (As it is of particular interest to me for health reasons) for as long as I can recall in Australia since 2005 has rarely been below ~45%. Yes, low humidity leads to greater risk of dry lightening however, overall the humidity thing is a misdirection.

      There is so much fuel load on the ground now it makes little difference. It will burn regardless and, as witness this year, burns out of control. What is for sure, like after the fires in 2009, there will be a Royal Commission investigation. There will be a report generated. The findings and recommendations in the report will be, largely, ignored as has been since 2009. Come 2030, due to fuel load mismanagement *AGAIN*, there will be massive, uncontrolled fires. And CO2 will still be blamed. And so on…

      I don’t think I will be around in 2030 however, my bet is the world will be seeing the touches of a major cooling period, similar to that of the 1940’s to 1970’s period and suggested by Russian solar physicists about 20 years ago.

      Don’t sell your overcoat.

  43. The fact is, increased atmospheric CO2 did play a part in these fires.

    The increase in vegetation growth thanks to increased atmospheric CO2 doubtless added to the fuel load which the greens resist being cleared.

    Sorry if someone has already pointed that out, I didn’t have time to read all the comments.

    • HotScot: how many other factors affect vegetation growth – for example rainfall patterns and amounts, hours of sunlight, ambient temperatures, soil type, geographic location, length of growing season? Do some types of vegetation grow better than others in certain regions? How can you state with such confidence that ‘the fact is, incresed atmospheric CO2 did play a part in these fires’ given so many variables?

      • Carbon500, I think that HotScot was just saying that any additional CO2 we have in the atmosphere has fed the trees, shrubs and vegetation generally like they do with hothouses. Thereby increasing the level of fuels.

        He wasn’t otherwise blaming CO2 for the fires, as in CC.

        • Megs: here’s what bothers me. It’s the gross over-simplification inherent in the idea that CO2 is solely responsible for the alleged enhanced growth of vegetation. My work over the years was in biology and biochemistry. The complexity and varaibility to be found in the natural world is incredible. Where for example is the work showing species variability as to optimal CO2 requirements? What localised variations are seen in CO2 levels after say, a thunderstorm? – CO2 is a water soluble gas, after all. The textbooks claim that CO2 is uniformly distributed – well, maybe at the stations where atmospheric gases are sampled it is so, but everywhere on the planet? I doubt it. There’s the fear of runaway warming – the warmer it gets, the more CO2 comes out of the oceans, and so it gets warmer, along with more water vapour in the atmosphere supplementing the heating, If so, why hasn’t runaway warming happened over countless millenia?
          Where is the laboratory bench experiment under convective conditions (with real CO2 and water, not a computer ‘model’), reproducible in any laboratory in the world, that gives us figures under controlled conditions as to how much warming incremental CO2 changes cause in the presence of varying defined water vapour concentrations? The oceans are buffered – how much CO2 is expelled per degree of warming relative to plain water? So many questions are unanswered, yet the doom-mongers insist that they’re right; here’s far too much proverbial forelock-tugging to scientists such as Mann, particularly by thr media. My apologies for getting on my hobby horse – I’ve gone on too much here!

          • Carbon 500, it’s OK. We are making some ground. Peter Ridd was able to speak out about the lies about acidic oceans affecting reef fish. I’m pretty sure we’ve refuted David Attenborough’s lies about polar bears disappearing and walruses committing suicide. No one is having to move to higher ground because of rising waters. I don’t believe that glaciers are retreating any faster than they have anyway since the last ice age, or maybe they retreat faster as they get smaller and if it doesn’t snow.

            CO2 is not causing the climate to warm. The climate is cyclical with variations, as the weather is cyclical with variations. We expect seasons, in many parts of the world, except the tropics, it’s just pretty much hot and humid year round with monsoons in summer. But we expect that the weather will be cold in winter, starting to warm up in spring, hot in summer and starting to cool down in autumn. Sometimes we get variations in weather patterns from season to season. Climate variations are where long term, what was considered a variation in weather patterns, are being repeated. Then you need to consider a change in climate. Nothing that hasn’t happened before.
            indicating a possible change in climactic conditions.

            Unfortunately, Australia has had a bad fire season, people have died, animals, native and domestic have died, property has been destroyed and vast areas of grasslands, scrub and trees have been burned off. There is no denying the tragedy. But the only contribution man had in the cause of these fires is arson and negligence. CO2 levels had absolutely nothing to do with it. These fires are not unprecedented, they are a part of the Australian history. There are YouTube videos showing a particular National Park immediately after the 2009 bushfires, everything blackened, nothing on the ground, not a leaf on any tree. They showed the grow back over fifteen months and by that time the trees had a covering of new leaves and emerging branches and the undergrowth was almost waist high.

            Nothing that hasn’t happened before. The temperatures are not unprecedented either. We’ve had recorded temperatures dating back to the mid 1800’s, that equate to the temperatures we’ve had here recently, that is unless they’ve been obliterated from the records. I have certainly experienced the same high temperatures in my lifetime. Parts of Australia experience drought, regularly. Bushfires happen every year here, some years are worse than others. Now, the only reason we are on the world stage is because of CC hysteria and social media. Of course the worst of them is MSM. Journalism has become nothing short of disgraceful. The MSM feed the hysteria and many of them have actually bought into the whole scenario. I thought that it was the job of a journalists to find out and present the facts. There is little truth in journalism anymore and it’s more about the journalists promoting their own, and popular opinion. The actual facts are irrelevant.

            Because journalists have effectively gagged more than half the population, there is no balance in society anymore. If the people are only getting one story over and over then it becomes propaganda. It becomes their reality, there is no other reference point.

            So you see, just to put things into perspective, the ‘truth’ about CO2 levels and their affects on CC is not really relevant at the moment. It’s not even the agenda anyway. But as long as we cannot get the truth out there and present a balanced view in science, the people remain ignorant.

            See, I tend to be a little verbose too. Oh and, we need to be grateful that we can express our views on sites such as this one, particularly this one.

          • Megs: thanks for your comments, they make interesting reading, and I agree entirely.
            I came across the link below on Paul Holmewood’s ‘Not a Lot of People Know That’ website, and it makes for fascinating browsing – where’s the dangerous climate change that we hear so much about? I’ve posted this link here before, so at the risk of being boring, I’m posting it again. It’s from the UK’s Met Office website – they’re sitting on data like this, yet there’s plenty of doom-mongering on their website – quite a contradiction.
            Here it is – graphs of UK temperatures, rainfall and sunshine going back to 1910:
            https://www.metoffice.gov.uk/research/climate/maps-and-data/uk-temperature-rainfall-and-sunshine-time-series
            I thought your comment as follows to be very true – ‘because journalists have effectively gagged more than half the population, there is no balance in society anymore. If the people are only getting one story over and over then it becomes propaganda. It becomes their reality, there is no other reference point.’
            Sadly, not many people dig deeper. As you say, we are fortunate to be able to express and exchange views on websites such as this – so thank you, Anthony!

  44. Looking at the actual charts, if the temperature and precipitation conditions this year are due to catastrophic man-made global warming, the temperature and precipitation conditions in 2010 and 2011 had to be due to catastrophic global cooling.
    I am old enough to remember the news in 2010 and 2011 (unlike Greta) and the people claiming that the Australian weather is evidence of catastrophic global warming were NOT claiming that the world was catastrophically cooling in 2010 and 2011.

  45. 1. Let’s assume for the sake of argument that change in temperature has been and will be 100% anthropogenic CO2. Australia currently produces 1.37% of anthropogenic CO2 globally so if we shut down all coal power plants, take all vehicles off the road, and stop exhaling, we will bring down the current warming trend of 0.110 C per decade (linear regression of satellite measurement since 1979) to 0.1084 C per decade. That should eradicate bushfires in Australia like throwing a cup of water in the air every day would eradicate droughts.
    2. Either global warming produces more positive feedbacks due to more water vapour and more rain or it doesn’t. If droughts (dry weather) are a symptom of AGW then you can’t argue that more water vapour is also a symptom.

  46. They scope of the fires was related to arson, pure and simple. Lightning also contributed. –> The_ scope of the fires was related to arson, pure and simple. Lightning also contributed.

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