The Week That Was: 2021-01-30 (January 30, 2021)
Brought to You by SEPP (www.SEPP.org
The Science and Environmental Policy Project
Quote of the Week: “By honest I don’t mean that you only tell what’s true. But you make clear the entire situation. You make clear all the information that is required for somebody else who is intelligent to make up their mind.” – Richard Feynman
Number of the Week: – 15% or 61 Terawatt-hours (TWh)
By Ken Haapala, President, Science and Environmental Policy Project (SEPP)
EPA Endangerment Finding: Attorneys for various organizations have petitioned the EPA to overturn its “Endangerment Finding” (2009 Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings for Greenhouse Gases under Section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act), according to which carbon dioxide (CO2) is regarded as a danger to the health of people. On January 19, outgoing EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler sent a rejection to the attorneys. The EPA reasons for denying the petitions include:
“Our Endangerment Finding concluded on the basis of scientific evidence from the U.S. Global Climate Research Program, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [IPCC], and the National Research Council that certain long-lived and directly emitted greenhouse gases in the atmosphere – the six well-mixed greenhouse gases – may reasonably be anticipated both to endanger public health and to endanger public welfare.”
The problem is that none of the cited organizations presented physical evidence that greenhouse gases in general and carbon dioxide (CO2) specifically endanger public health and welfare.
The studies the EPA cites fail on multiple levels:
- The methods used do not separate human influence on climate from natural influences based on physical evidence. The organizations use speculation.
- The methods used do not separate the influence of greenhouse gases on climate from other human influences based on physical evidence. Other human influences include urbanization and change of land use such as agriculture and irrigation.
- The methods used do not incorporate the correct field of physics needed to understand the greenhouse effect and how the greenhouse effect changes with changing greenhouse gases. The correct field of physics is well established, radiative transfer, and the proper physical evidence is well tested, such as HITRAN.
Thus, the EPA determination is not based on the best science available but on speculation. The greenhouse effect occurs throughout the atmosphere, particularly in the troposphere. The dominant greenhouse gas is water vapor. The methods used by the organizations cited by the EPA use speculation to separate the influence of water vapor from the influence of other greenhouse gases.
The EPA and the organizations cited ignore the most basic test to discern if they are close to understanding the greenhouse effect, testing atmospheric temperature trends against what their models project. The models these organizations rely on fail miserably, greatly overestimating the effects of greenhouse gases
Thus, these organizations fail in the most fundamental step in the scientific method, testing the hypothesis against all physical evidence.
EPA is an organization that is both regulatory and scientific. It is incapable of doing both. It has subordinated its scientific roles to its regulatory role. The courts’ trust in the EPA is misplaced. It has not applied the scientific method of questioning and challenging the assertion with physical evidence. It has not used the correct field of physics, not used the proper evidence (data bases) and not corrected models that fail.
The Endangerment Finding was announced early in the Obama Administration, by a Democrat EPA administrator called extremely liberal. This denial letter comes from the Trump Administration’s EPA, a Republican called extremely conservative. One could say that the scientific incompetence of the EPA carries through, regardless of political party or ideology.
See discussion on Radiation Transfer in previous TWTWs, such as the one last week. For issues on climate science and specific deficiencies in the U.S. Global Research Program, see links under Challenging the Orthodoxy.
Legally Binding? Last week, TWTW discussed that the Paris Agreement, signed under the Obama Administration, rejected by Trump, now embraced by the Biden Administration, is not a treaty under the US Constitution, because it has not been submitted to the Senate, let alone agreed to by a two-thirds majority. It is not legally in US courts. Reader Dennis Ambler of the UK drew attention to the website of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) discussing the Paris Agreement: It opens with:
“The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris, on 12 December 2015 and entered into force on 4 November 2016.”
The US courts will determine whether it is legally binding in the US. But who will make it legally binding in China? Or in Russia, or in Iran?
The website also states:
“Implementation of the Paris Agreement requires economic and social transformation, based on the best available science.”
As stated above, what is called the best available science is little more than speculation and is clearly contradicted by physical evidence and therefore wrong.
The UNFCCC was a parent to the UN IPCC and was formed by an agreement signed by the first President Bush. The agreement was sent as a treaty to the US Senate for approval (two-thirds of those present is needed). In October 1992, the Senate approved it with conditions that appear to be violated today. For example:
“The second paragraph states the sense of the Senate regarding the materials that must be included in the transmittal documents that would accompany any agreement that is submitted to the Senate for its advice and consent to ratification. Such transmittal documents should include: 1) a detailed explanation of legislation or regulations that would be required to implement the agreement; 2) a detailed analysis of the financial and economic costs to the United States incurred by implementing the agreement submitted to the Senate.” [Boldface added]
It may result in the Supreme Court having to decide whether the UNFCCC agreement is a treaty in the US, regardless of previous claims. (Note that a treaty (valid or not) to form an organization is not a treaty to abide by their declarations.) This mess is an illustration of the wisdom of George Washington who in his farewell address advised American citizens to view themselves as a cohesive unit and to be wary of attachments and entanglements with other nations. See links under After Paris!
Changing Science: On her blog Climate Etc., Judith Curry presented her lightly edited transcript of a podcast interview she did with Canadian Christopher Balkaran. In it she discusses how climate science has changed since she was a student, becoming part of a political movement for world government headed by the UN (at least as the figurehead). She states that when she was a student:
“Climate change wasn’t a really big issue at that point. At the time, it was all about geophysical fluid dynamics, trying to understand the circulations of atmosphere and the ocean, radiative transfer, cloud physics. It was, it was very physics based. I would hear in the media about people talking about, Oh, the ice age is coming, or doom and gloom from CO2 emissions, but nobody was really paying attention to all that very much in terms of what I would say the mainstream field until the late 1980s, really. There were some very rambunctious people who were talking about this publicly and painting alarming scenarios on both sides, the cold and the warm side, and most people that I knew and where I was, nobody was really paying much attention to all that.”
In the 1970s radiative transfer was an important part of Climate Science. Now it is ignored. The science of radiative transfer does not produce results that create fear in the public, probably because it was not until the 1980s a big push came to create fear of climate change. Curry states:
Well, a lot of it comes from the UN Environmental Program [UNEP]. At the time, there was a push towards world government, socialistic kind of leanings, don’t like capitalism and big oil. A lot of it really comes from that kind of thinking. And the UNEP was one of the sponsoring organizations for the IPCC. And so that really engaged more climate scientists and really brought it more into the mainstream. But in the early days, a lot of scientists didn’t like this at all, they didn’t think that we should be going in this direction. And this was even the World Climate Research program and the World Meteorological Organization, they didn’t want to get involved in man-made climate change under the auspices of the IPCC.
They said, this is just a whole political thing. This is not what we do. We seek to understand all the processes and climate dynamics, we don’t want to go there. And that was really a pretty strong attitude, though, I would say the mid-nineties, say 1995. We had the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change at that point, they’re trying to get a big treaty going. And so, defenders of the IPCC started pushing the idea that anybody who doubts us or challenges us, they are in the pay of big oil. After that, it became much more difficult to really challenge all that. And certainly, by the turn of the century, anybody who was questioning the hockey stick or any of these other things were slammed as deniers and ostracized. And then after Climategate in 2010, the consensus enforcers became very militant. So, it’s a combination of politics, and some mediocre scientists trying to protect their careers. And they saw this whole thing as a way for career advancement, and it gives them a seat at the big table and political power.
“All this reinforces pretty shoddy science and overconfidence in their expert judgment, which comprises the IPCC assessment reports. And then at some point you start to get second order belief. I mean, it’s such a big, complex problem. Individual scientists only look at a piece of it, and then they start accepting what the consensus says on the other topics. A scientist working on some aspect of the climate problem may know very little about carbon dioxide, the carbon budget, radiative transfer, all that fundamental science, but they will accept the climate consensus because it’s easy and good for their career. And so, it just becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. And now we have way too much confidence in some very dubious climate models and inadequate data sets. And we’re not really framing the problem broadly enough to really understand what’s going on with the climate and to make credible projections about the range of things that we could possibly see in the 21st century.”
Curry goes on to discuss how the political movement gained public funding for certain scientists. Those who did not go along could not get funding. [Government funding is especially important to research universities.]
“As a result, it’s really the independent scientists, retired people, people in the private sector, independently wealthy people who are doing this work.” [of providing needed skepticism.]
After Balkaran (the commentator) asked why Curry believes climate science is so politicized, she states:
“Well, there is almost certainly a signal of manmade emissions in the earth’s climate. All other things being equal, it’s warmer than it would otherwise be. The real issue is the magnitude of man-made warming relative to the whole host of other things that go on in the natural climate system. And then the bigger issue is really whether this warming is dangerous. You know, a certain amount of warming is generally regarded by people as a good thing. But a whole lot of warming, isn’t especially a good thing, especially if it’s melting ice sheets and causing sea level rise.”
After a discussion of sea level rise Curry discusses her skepticism of climate change modeling:
Okay. The climate models originated from weather forecast models, and then they added an ocean then land surface biosphere, and then chemical processes, and now ice sheets. They keep adding all these modules and increasing complexity of the models, but the basic dynamics are driven by the same kind of models that model the weather. We’ve learned a lot from climate models, by running experiments, turning things off, turning things on adjusting parameters, taking clouds out, taking sea ice out, holding the sea surface temperature constant in the tropical central Pacific and see what happens, you know, we learn how the climate works by using climate models in that way. However, the most consequential applications of climate models are to tell us what caused the 20th century climate change, how much the climate change is going to change in the 21st century and what’s causing extreme weather events.
I mean, those are the more consequential applications and climate models aren’t fit for any of those purposes. And that’s pretty much acknowledged even in the IPCC report. Well, they, they do claim that they can attribute the global warming, but this can’t be easily separated from the natural variability associated with large-scale ocean circulations. And the way they’ve used climate models to do that involves circular reasoning, where they throw out climate simulations that really don’t match what was observed. So, you, you end up, even if you’re not explicitly tuning to the climate record, you’re implicitly tuning. And then the thing with extreme events, weather events is beyond silly because these climate models can’t resolve the extreme events and they can’t simulate the ocean circulation patterns that really determine the locations of these extreme events. And then when you start talking about 21st century, the only thing they’re looking at is the manmade human emissions forcing, they’re not predicting solar variability.
The interview goes on to discuss many other problems with climate modeling and their use in making projections / predictions of future conditions, even though the models fail basic testing. As Curry states, the modeling (and the organizations that focus on it) are looking at one little piece (the warming role of CO2) of the complex puzzle of climate change. As Richard Lindzen wrote, this may be 1 to 2% of the puzzle. Outputs from such modeling are scientifically meaningless.
After explaining she has tried to look at both sides of the debate, she states:
“but the alarmists seem to be completely intolerant to disagreement and criticism.
“There’s crazy people on both sides of the debate. There’s a range of credible perspectives that I try to consider. it’s a very complex problem and we don’t have the answers yet.”
In a section discussing political influence she states:
“Yeah. you know, people have said Trump is anti-science. I don’t think he’s anti-science, he just doesn’t pay attention to it. What he pays attention to is energy policy. This doesn’t necessarily make you anti-science it makes you ignoring science, so it’s different. So that’s what we’ve seen in the U.S. under the Trump administration. And then we have on the other side of the aisle, politicians say, “I believe in science” and they don’t understand anything about it. They say they believe in it. It’s like they they’re believing in Santa Claus. it’s really a political and cultural signifier rather than any real understanding. So, it’s just become so politicized, you know, how do you get around that? How do you get past that? I don’t know.”
“Well, the first four years, Obama saw that climate change was a political tar baby, and so he pretty much ignored it and went on and tried to do other things where he thought he could be more successful. I think that was a good choice. He picked up on climate change in his second term, but he politicized it. John Holdren, his science advisor really politicized it. President Obama was tweeting about deniers and stuff like that. And on the White House web page, there was stuff about calling out the climate deniers, and it was very polarizing. I think a lot of the polarization that happened in the U S, really accelerated during Obama’s second term. Then you get whiplash with the Trump administration who, doesn’t care about climate change. He does care about energy policies, you know, he was on a completely different tangent.”
This is a refreshing interview from someone who was intensely involved from the academic standpoint, testified in Congress and who was willing to ask critical questions. The only point on which TWTW disagrees is her belief that natural gas can replace coal for generating electricity. Thanks to the development of directional drilling coupled with hydraulic fracturing this is true for the US. But the beds of shale need to be fairly uniform and largely unfractured. For example, early estimates of recoverable oil and gas in the Monterey formation in California have been substantially lowered. The formation now appears unsuitable because of lack of uniformity and complex fracturing. In many parts of the world coal may be the only fossil fuel available for generating reliable, affordable electricity.
The other option is nuclear. As Curry brings up, wind and solar (though unreliable) require extensive land that is often better used for other purposes. See links under Challenging the Orthodoxy.
Costs and Benefits: Unscrupulous economists are particularly good at manipulating numbers to confuse the public and make certain policies appear far better than they are. Nicholas Stern of the UK, formerly of the World Bank, did this in his cost-benefit analysis of the 2008 Climate Change Act, which committed the UK to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050, compared to 1990 levels. The costs of this Act are still unknown, but electricity prices in the UK are increasing substantially. The benefits are minimal, possibly non-existent.
For all of Trump’s shortcomings, his economic policies brought the US out of the great recession. Before COVID-19 hit, unemployment was at its lowest since the 1960s; black unemployment was the lowest since the Bureau of Labor Statistics began calculating it in the early 1970s; and income disparity between the highest and lowest income groups was shrinking. Much of the credit belongs to Mick Mulvaney, who was director of the Office of Management and Budget until Trump relieved him.
Mulvaney and a former associate wrote an article in the Wall Street Journal cautioning readers that a memo by President Biden may give OMB the excuse to jack up the benefits of regulation and play down the costs, similar to what Nicholas Stern did in the UK. See Article # 1 and links under Questioning European Green and Energy Issues – Non-US.
Additions and Corrections: Last week TWTW brought up the idea of Bandwagon Science. Richard Courtney brought up the idea of bandwagon, TWTW added science. Subsequently, Courtney wrote:
“…for decades I have been saying that global warming is a bandwagon and NOT a conspiracy.
“People do not need to agree for them to join (or to stay on) a bandwagon that is going in a direction they all want to go. And a coincidence of interests usually has a greater effect than any conspiracy.
“The global warming issue is a tool used by people of all political persuasions. And it is a useful source of research funding while politicians promote it.
“Global warming was an obscure scientific hypothesis for a century. Several people, notably Bert Bolin, had failed in attempts to make a scare from the hypothesis before Margaret Thatcher elevated it to become an international political issue. After that the hypothesis was a political issue which became a bandwagon that made the hypothesis into a scare. Thatcher attempted to reject ‘global warming’ when it ceased its usefulness to her, but she then discovered had become a bandwagon she was unable to stop.”
“’Science’ is self-correcting but ‘bandwagon science’ is self-sustaining.”
Number of the Week: 15% or 61 Terawatt-hours (TWh). China Energy Portal tracks China power production. The increases from 2019 to 2020 are: Wind up 61.2 TWh (15.1%), Solar up 37.1 TWh (16.6%), and Thermal up 296 TWh (4%). Guess which number the wind and solar promoters will use in comparing these increases with coal, actual increase, or percentage increase? [Total power production was 7,624 TWh] See links under Return of King Coal?
NEWS YOU CAN USE:
Challenging the Orthodoxy — NIPCC
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Physical Science
Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), 2013
Idso, Idso, Carter, and Singer, Lead Authors/Editors, Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), 2014
Climate Change Reconsidered II: Fossil Fuels
By Multiple Authors, Bezdek, Idso, Legates, and Singer eds., Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, April 2019
Download with no charge:
Why Scientists Disagree About Global Warming
The NIPCC Report on the Scientific Consensus
By Craig D. Idso, Robert M. Carter, and S. Fred Singer, Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), Nov 23, 2015
Download with no charge:
S. Fred Singer, Editor, NIPCC, 2008
Global Sea-Level Rise: An Evaluation of the Data
By Craig D. Idso, David Legates, and S. Fred Singer, Heartland Policy Brief, May 20, 2019
Challenging the Orthodoxy
Climate Science: Is it currently designed to answer questions?
By Richard Lindzen, MIT Program in Atmospheres, Oceans and Climate, Revised Sep 21, 2012
The Scientific Case for Vacating the EPA’s Carbon Dioxide Endangerment Finding
By Patrick J. Michaels, CEI, April 17, 2020
Interview: Climate Change – A Different Perspective with Judith Curry
By Judith Curry, Climate Etc. Jan 30, 2021
Following the (Fake) Science
By Staff, Physicians for Civil Defense, Jan 14, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
Global Ice Story
By Joe D’Aleo and Don Easterbrook, ICECAP, Jan 27, 2021
Climate Alarmism Reconsidered (2004 insight for Biden’s ‘climate day’)
By Robert Bradley Jr. Master Resource, Jan 28, 2021
Moving Forward – A New WUWT Reference/Resource Site
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Jan 25, 2021
Could Recent U.S. Warming Trends be Largely Spurious?
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Jan 29, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Fred Singer thought so.]
Defending the Orthodoxy
By Staff, UN, Accessed Jan 25, 2021
“Peace, dignity and equality on a health planet”
“The most abundant GHG, accounting for about two-thirds of GHGs, carbon dioxide (CO2), is largely the product of burning fossil fuels.”
Executives from Jeff Bezos to Ford Motor Co.’s Bill Ford tell Joe Biden: Fighting climate change means job creation
By Catherine Clifford, Make It, Jan 25, 2021
Link to letter: President Biden: You Can Be the Climate President
By those who claim: Our children and grandchildren must see this as the moment the world was saved. Climate Power, Accessed, Jan 27, 2021
Our Amazing Clean Energy Future Has Arrived
The evidence of a great green wave is now overwhelming. And it will only get better.
By Vivek Wadhawa and Alex Salkever, Foreign Policy, Jan 23, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
“Vivek Wadhwa is a distinguished fellow at Harvard Law School’s Labor and Worklife Program and the co-author of From Incremental to Exponential: How Large Companies Can See the Future and Rethink Innovation.
Questioning the Orthodoxy
Weather and the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster on January 28, 1986
By Paul Dorian, WUWT, Jan 28, 2021
[SEPP Comment: NASA Headquarters’ cover up was disgraceful. Fortunately, it was brilliantly exposed by Richard Feynman.]
Endangered Cloud Forests, Clouds and Climate Change
By Jim Steele, Landscapes and Cycles, Accessed Jan 29, 2021
“The ‘critically endangered’ cloud forest is restricted to just 0.1 square miles atop the island’s extinct volcanic mountain. Researchers worried the cloud forest’s unique collection of species would have nowhere to go if global warming disrupted its environment. Accordingly, the IUCN designates ecosystems with such limited distributions as critically endangered.”
Over 400 Scientific Papers Published In 2020 Support A Skeptical Position On Climate Alarm
By Kenneth Richard, No Tricks Zone, Jan 29, 2021
Zoom Webinar on Reforming Environmental Science
By Jeffrey Rae, AEF News (Australian Environmental Foundation), Posted Dec 7, 2020 [H/t Tom Quirk]
The Climate Summit’s Fake Nobel Laureate
Chemist William Moomaw has never won a Nobel Prize. But advertisements for his speaking engagements say otherwise.
By Donna Laframboise, Big Picture News, Jan 25, 2021
The Paris Agreement
What is the Paris Agreement?
By Staff, UNFCCC, Accessed Jan 27, 2021 [H/t Dennis Ambler]
If the Senate Is Sane, They Won’t Ratify the Paris Climate Agreement
By Larry Bell, Newsmax, Jan 27, 2021
COP26 in trouble as UK Government split over new coal mine
By Staff, The Times, Jan 25, 2021
Change in US Administrations
President Biden’s Climate Day: the Entire Federal Government Will Be Focused on the “Climate Crisis”
By Myron Ebell, CEI, Jan 29, 2021
Biden’s Worst Executive Order Went Almost Entirely Unnoticed
I & I Editorial Board, Issues and Insights, Jan 29, 2021
Biden wants the review process instead to be ‘a tool to affirmatively promote regulations’ and ‘to ensure swift and effective federal action’ on everything from the pandemic, to the economy, to racial inequality, to the ‘undeniable reality and accelerating threat of climate change.’ In other words … everything.”
Biden says US will lead way on ‘existential’ climate crisis
By Issam AHMED, Washington (AFP), Jan 27, 2021
Biden Administration Initiates Steps to Submit Kigali Amendment to Senate for Ratification Vote
By Ben Lieberman, CEI, Jan 29, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Using the claim of green jobs – from higher air conditioning costs?]
Kerry ‘regrets’ US absence from climate fight
By Danny Kemp, The Hague (AFP) Jan 25, 2021
John Kerry: China’s Net Zero pledge ‘not good enough’
By Staff, Reuters, Via GWPF, Jan 24, 2021
Washington’s Control of the US Economy
Biden’s energy & climate incompetence on full display
By Larry Hamlin, WUWT, Jan 29, 2021
“During the last decade the world’s developed nations including the EU and U.S. have reduced global CO2 emissions by about 1.6 billion metric tons per year while the developing nations increased global CO2 emissions by about 5.7 billion metric tons.”
Fettering Biden’s Administrative State
Trump-era rules will constrain the new president’s activism.
By Rupert Darwall, Real Clear Energy, Jan 24, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Declaring China’s persecution of the Uighurs a crime against humanity may create difficulties for a Biden-China deal.]
Problems in the Orthodoxy
Aerosol particles cool the climate less than we thought
News Release by Delft University of Technology, Jan 28, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
Link to paper: Aerosol-cloud-climate cooling overestimated by ship-track data
By Franziska Glassmeier et al. Science Jan 29, 2021
[SEPP Comment: What does this do to the IPCC made-up aerosol cooling-CO2 warming balance?]
Seeking a Common Ground
Press release: adaptation much more profitable than mitigation
By Staff, Clintel, Jan 27, 2021 [H/t WUWT]
The Rational Climate e-Book, By Patrice Poyet
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 27, 2021
Meet the team shaking up climate models
Why We Wrote This: If scientists can create a new way to predict climate change – making it as accurate as, say, forecasting the weather – it would help people make everyday decisions: how high to build a sea wall or what crops to plant.
By Doug Struck, Christian Science Monitor, Jan 22, 2021
[SEPP Comment: The climate modelers claim a more accurate forecasting of climate 100 years hence while weather modelers are struggling to get more accurate forecasting of severe weather 2 weeks hence?]
Science, Policy, and Evidence
Government plans to turn England homes green ‘in chaos’ with debt and job losses
Exclusive: firms out of pocket and losing faith in scheme administered by US-based corporation
US firm running eco grants scheme has won multiple UK government contracts
By Sandra Laville, The Guardian, Jan 26, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
New Mexico Continues To “Listen To The Scientists”
By Tony Heller, His Blog, Jan 28, 2021
“One thing lockdowns accomplished is high unemployment.
New Mexico Shocked by “Biden Assault On Oil And Gas”
By David Middleton, WUWT, Jan 27, 2021
Make in India boost, oil cess [a tax] may be halved
Cess on domestic crude is currently levied at the rate of 20 per cent of the value of oil. Official sources said the proposal by the Union Oil Ministry is to reduce it to 10 per cent
By Staff, Economic Times of India, Jan 27, 2021
New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act
By Roger Calazza, WUWT, Jan 29, 2021
Review of Recent Scientific Articles by CO2 Science
No Impact of Elevated CO2 on Learning Capabilities of Bigfin Reef Squid
Spady, B.L. and Watson, S.-A. 2020. Bigfin reef squid demonstrate capacity for conditional discrimination and projected future carbon dioxide levels have no effect on learning capabilities. PeerJ 8: e9865, DOI 10.7717/peerj.9865. Jan 29, 2021
Elevated CO2 Reduces the Survival Rate of the Confused Sap Beetle
Nor-Atikah, A.R., Halim, M., Nur-Hasyimah, H. and Yaakop, S. 2020. Evaluation of colour changes, survival rate and life span of the confused sap beetle (Carphophilus mutilatus) (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae) in different concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2). Applied Ecology and Environmental Research 18: 6443-6455. Jan 27, 2021
Rapid Adaptation of a Coral Symbiont Algae to Temperature Stress
Chakravarti, L.J., Buerger, P., Levin, R.A. and van Oppen, M.J.H. 2020. Gene regulation underpinning increased thermal tolerance in a laboratory-evolved coral photosymbiont. Molecular Ecology 29: 1684-1703. Jan 25, 2021
Models v. Observations
Oceans warmed steadily over 12,000 years: study
By Patrick Galey, Paris (AFP), Jan 27, 2021
“Researchers in the US and China reassessed sea temperature models and found that they usually represented seasonal temperature variations rather than the annual average.
“Adjusting for these seasonal discrepancies, they found that sea temperatures have in fact risen more or less in lock step with global air temperatures over the last 12,000 years.”
[SEPP Comment: Fails to show the precise measurements for both sea temperatures and air temperatures!]
Complete Ensemble Empirical Mode Decomposition
By Willis Eschenbach, WUWT, Jan 26, 2021
Measurement Issues — Surface
Record Heat Of January 26, 1950
By Tony Heller, His Blog, Jan 26, 2021
Reconstruction shows increased global warming trends since 1850s
By Staff, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Jan 28, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
Link to paper: The Assessment of Global Surface Temperature Change from 1850s: The C-LSAT2.0 Ensemble and the CMST-Interim Datasets
By Wenbin Sun, et al. Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, Jan 28, 2021
Biden climate plan to address worsening Western wildfires, but it will take years
Biden’s $1.7-trillion climate plan could help stave off the most catastrophic wildfires later in the 21st Century, but it’s not a cure-all.
By Zach Urness and Damon Arthur, Salem Statesman Journal, Jan 25, 2021 [H/t Bob Zybach]
[SEPP Comment: Severe western forest fires are a real problem arising from failure to provide proper management of forests, where possible. Blaming the fires on climate change largely ignores the problem.]
Environment Agency Blames Storm Christoph On Climate Change!
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 24, 2021
The Blob is Weakening
By Cliff Mass, Weather Blog, Jan 28, 2021
“Why is the Blob weakening?
“Blob’s tend to develop when there is persistent high pressure…also known as ridging….over the northeast Pacific. Such high pressure is associated with light winds, which minimizes vertical mixing in the upper ocean. Mixing that brings colder water to the surface. Thus, high pressure and light winds tend to produce warmer than normal temperatures……a Blob situation.”
Past river activity in northern Africa reveals multiple Sahara greenings
The analysis of sediment cores from the Mediterranean Sea combined with Earth system models tells the story of major environmental changes in North Africa over the last 160,000 years
News Release, German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ), Jan 29, 2021 [H/t WUWT]
Link to paper: Drivers of river reactivation in North Africa during the last glacial cycle
By Cécile L. Blanchet, et al. Nature Geoscience, Jan 28, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Agrees with what H.H. Lamb wrote decades ago. It has been ignored by those who claim CO2 is the primary cause of climate change. Did Nature Geoscience publish the paper only because it included model simulations or did it in an effort to dispute CO2 caused greening?]
Can’t Be CO2! Scientists Surprised, Discover Mississippi Basin Was Almost 4°F WARMER 700 Years Ago
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 26, 2021
U.S. sea-level report cards: 2020 again trends toward acceleration
By David Malmquist, The College of William & Mary, Jan 26, 2021
Link to: Rise Rate Histories: U.S. East Coast
By Staff, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, Accessed Jan 27, 2021
“The annual update of their sea level ‘report cards’ by researchers at William & Mary’s Virginia Institute of Marine Science adds further evidence of an accelerating rate of sea-level rise at nearly all tidal stations along the U.S. coastline.
[SEPP Comment: The opening sentence of the article is false. The backup data for the East Coast show that north of Cape Hatteras, NC, since 2011 sea level rise has been decelerating; while south Cape Hatteras, it has been accelerating. Something else is going on, which the report card writers do not report!]
Major discovery helps explain coral bleaching
News Release, Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Jan 25, 2021 [H/t WUWT]
No link to paper
[SEPP Comment: Many others have noted the importance of the symbiotic relationship between corals and algae, with algae being more sensitive to stresses than corals.]
Marine heatwaves becoming more intense, more frequent
News Release by University of Colorado at Boulder, Jan 28, 2021 [Bernie Kepshire]
Link to paper: Are Long-Term Changes in Mixed Layer Depth Influencing North Pacific Marine Heatwaves?
By Dillon J. Amaya, et al. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, Jan 27, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Has the PDO changed this layer, or undersea volcanoes?]
Impact of rising sea temperatures on marine life
News Release, Nova Southeastern University, Jan 26, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
Link to paper: Thermal acclimation of tropical coral reef fishes to global heat waves
By Jacob Johansen, et al. Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, Jan 26, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Highly question opening phrase in the abstract: “As climate-driven heat waves become more frequent and intense,”]
Changing Cryosphere – Land / Sea Ice
Arctic warming and diminishing sea ice are influencing the atmosphere
News Release by University of Helsinki, Jan 29, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
Link to paper: Differing mechanisms of new particle formation at two Arctic sites.
By Lisa J. Beck, et al. Geophysical Research Letters, Dec 28, 2020
[SEPP Comment: Decreasing summer ice cover is increasing primary production of phytoplankton thus increasing populations of animals that feed on phytoplankton. According to the study, increasing phytoplankton is causing increasing aerosols, which have a cooling effect according to the IPCC. Is increasing web of life is a bad thing?]
Increasing ocean temperature threatens Greenland’s ice sheet
News Release by University of California, Irvine, Jan 25, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
Link to paper: Ocean forcing drives glacier retreat in Greenland
By Michael Wood, AAAS Science Advances, Jan 1, 2021
Simulating 800,000 Years Of California Earthquake History To Pinpoint Risks
Supercomputer-powered framework developed by SCEC provides new view of seismic hazard
By Aaron Dubrow, Texas Advanced Computing Center, Jan 25, 2021 [H/t WUWT]
Link to paper: Toward Physics‐Based Nonergodic PSHA: A Prototype Fully Deterministic Seismic Hazard Model for Southern California
By Kevin Milner, et al. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, Jan 5, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Pinpoint???]
Agriculture Issues & Fear of Famine
Biden’s “30 by 30” order could close-off 30 percent of US ocean to fishing
By Chris Chase, Seafood Source, Jan 27, 2021
UK Climate Assembly was undemocratic–Ben Pile
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 29, 2021
Communicating Better to the Public – Exaggerate, or be Vague?
Scientists say (5)
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 27, 2021
Communicating Better to the Public – Do a Poll?
UN: Angry Birds Survey Proves the World Demands Climate Action
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 27, 2021
Link to poll: The Peoples’ Climate Vote
By Staff, UNDP (UN Development Programme) Jan 26, 2021
BBC Hype Climate Poll, That Goebbels Would Have Been Proud Of!
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 27, 2021
Communicating Better to the Public – Use Propaganda
Attenborough’s cliff-dying walrus convinced elite Davos influencers of a global climate emergency
By Susan Crockford, Polar Bear Science, Jan 24, 2021
Expanding the Orthodoxy
Pentagon declares climate change a ‘national security issue’
By Ellen Mitchell, The Hill, Jan 27, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Just like Vietnam!]
Climate change is now a national security priority for the Pentagon
By: Aaron Mehta, Defense News, Jan 27, 2021 [H/t Paul DeWitt]
“But under the Trump administration, defense officials were careful to use such statements to acknowledge logistical concerns and they refused to comment on whether climate change is real or human-made.”
[SEPP Comment: Complete with a 2019 photo of the Missouri River flooding part of Offutt Air Force Base, and the Missouri River never flooded before!]
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 27, 2021
“In the long run, with the help of policies such as these, Europe will increasingly become an irrelevant, self obsessed backwater. Nobody will want to buy its expensive exports, which in any event will be badly hit by retaliatory tariffs by China and elsewhere. And Europeans will not be able to afford to import.
“Meanwhile Asia will plough ahead, supplying the rest of the world with what it wants.
“Too pessimistic? We actually have a very comparable example in recent history – the USSR.
“For different reasons, the Soviet economy became less and less competitive and efficient, as it looked ever more inward. Industry suffered from a lack of investment, and became increasingly obsolete. Bloated centralised bureaucracy sapped any entrepreneurial spirit and innovation. And its citizens grew ever poorer in relative terms.”
GWPF calls on Government to suspend £10 billion green levy on suffering households
Press Release, Global Warming Policy Forum. Jan 28, 2021
“The new team at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Kwasi Kwarteng and Anne-Marie Trevelyan, face an unenviable choice. If they do nothing, consumer hardship will only get worse. But taking the necessary emergency action in the short run, and adopting a longer-term cost-minimisation strategy will mean admitting that the green policies are failing.”
Net Zero agenda is making new houses unaffordable for ordinary Britons
By Staff, GWPF & The Guardian, Jan 23, 2021
Questioning Green Elsewhere
Bright Green Impossibilities
By Willis Eschenbach, WUWT, Jan 27, 2021
Biden policies already creating job losses, energy costs will skyrocket
By Joseph D’Aleo, ICECAP, Jan 19, 2021
Justin Haskins: Biden destroys jobs, raises energy costs by imposing radical environmental policies
The president was wrong to reenter Paris Climate Agreement and block the Keystone XL pipeline
By Justin Haskins, Fox News, Jan 23, 2021
Job Killer Joe’s Climate Team Promises to Replace the Fossil Fuel Jobs they “Sacrifice”
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 28, 2021
“Jennifer Granholm, President Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the U.S. Department of Energy, insisted Wednesday that ‘clean energy’ jobs will replace those that ‘might be sacrificed.’”
[SEPP Comment: Is it time for the administration to “sacrifice” and go to minimum wage?]
Court rules against fast-track of Trump EPA’s ‘secret science’ rule
By Rachel Frazin, The Hill, Jan 28, 2021
Sámi reindeer herders fight for their survival against Norway’s wind industry
By Staff, Stop These Things & The Guardian, Jan 23, 2021
“This is not the first such lawsuit in Norway. In the past five years Sámi communities have begun legal actions against the country’s largest onshore windfarms and have appealed to the UN, arguing that the farms violate their territorial and cultural rights.”
Cap-and-Trade and Carbon Taxes
EU carbon border levy shaping up as ‘notional ETS’
By Frédéric Simon, EURACTIV, Jan 25, 2021
[SEPP Comment: EU to tax developing countries to pay for EU green dreams?]
Subsidies and Mandates Forever
The Chart That Explains Larry Fink’s True “Green” Agenda
By Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge, Jan 26, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
“There’s that, and there’s also the fact that green and climate change are the biggest taxpayer-funded boondoggles in history,…”
Biden to End Fossil Fuel Subsidies: Like the Paris Agreement, it Will Make No Difference
By Roy Spencer, His Blog, Jan 27, 2021
“But federal subsidies on fossil fuels represent less than 3% of the revenues of the fossil fuel industry.”
[SEPP Comment: An empty gesture.]
Renewable Subsidies Reach Record High!
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 29, 2021
From BBC Newsround: “For the first time, renewable energy overtook fossil fuels to be the biggest source of electricity in the UK in 2020.”
Data Homewood presents: “This year, the cost of subsidising renewable energy will be £12.9bn, about £470 for every home in the country.
“More to the point though, fossil fuels still account for 79% of total energy consumption, with renewables running at just 11%:”
EPA and other Regulators on the March
EPA Welcomes Members of the Biden-Harris Leadership Team
Press Release, Headquarters Office of the Administrator, Jan 21, 2021
“Mix science and politics and you get politics. Curious how ‘ethics’ is being defined by this group.” – Bob Zybach
A trillion-pound dawk klunk
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 27, 2021
“Of course no such thing could happen here in Canada. But only because no government would ever be forced to disclose the basis of its calculations, on the off chance there even were any.”
[SEPP Comment: Discussing suing for calculations of the cost for net zero in the UK.]
What Would We Do Without [Natural] Gas?
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 28, 2021
Unfortunately, our energy policies seem to be run by Greenpeace instead of energy experts.
[SEPP Comment: Natural gas suppling 70% of energy consumed in UK from Oct to Dec 2019.]
Berlin On The Brink! Winter Blackouts Loom As Coal Plants Run At 100% Capacity, Struggle To Keep Lights On In
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 28, 2021
“Wintertime wind and solar energy ‘between 0 and 2 or 3 percent – that is de facto zero,’ says German power distribution professor.
“Berlin’s power supply severely strained”
China’s energy dilemma: between green pledges and blackouts
By Staff, Reuters, Via GWPF, Jan 23, 2021
[SEPP Comment: A false dilemma, does not exist for China.]
Britain facing fuel poverty crisis as millions to be plunged into debt in lockdown
EXCLUSIVE: Some of the country’s most vulnerable families have been hardest-hit as swathes of people work from home and children remain off school – causing bills to rocket by up to £45 a month
By Grace Macaskill, Mirror, Jan 23, 2021
Property market faces energy-efficiency ticking timebomb: Two-thirds of UK homes will be unsellable by 2028 unless they insulate
The Climate Change Committee has proposed all homes for sale should attain an EPC rating of C from 2028
The CCC is advising the government on how to achieve its net zero carbon emissions target
Less than one third of UK properties have an EPC of C or higher
By Ed Magnus, This is Money UK, Jan 25, 2021
Energy Issues — US
My Interview on NTD: Energy Prices to Rise Under Biden
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Jan 27, 2021
Prepare for Energy Shortages, Cost Hikes and Rationing
By Larry Bell, Newsmax, Jan 29, 2021
Washington’s Control of Energy
Feeding the Hand that Smites: Union Leaders Protesting Biden’s Cancellation of Keystone XL Pipeline Endorsed Him Despite Campaign Pledge to Kill the Project
By Marlo Lewis, Jr., CEI, Jan 27, 2021
“Whether or not the United States adds another 1,200 miles of pipe to a national petroleum pipeline network already spanning 190,000 miles was never a factor in any nation’s decision to join the Paris Climate Treaty.”
By John Robson, Climate Discussion Nexus, Jan 27, 2021
Oil and Natural Gas – the Future or the Past?
Back to Gerald Ford? (Thomas Friedman on energy policy in 2007)
By Robert Bradley Jr. Master Resource, Jan 26, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Review of past false predictions by media deemed “experts.”]
Europe welcomes Joe Biden: Norway awards oil and gas exploration rights to 30 firms
By Staff, Reuters, Via GWPF, Jan 24, 2021
National Grid Hails New Interconnector Bringing Coal Power From France!
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 23, 2021
“It must of course be a remarkable feat of engineering, if it can filter out all of the fossil fuel power and only let “clean” energy through!”
China’s Thermal Power Continued To Increase Last Year Despite COVID
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 25, 2021
Link to data: China Energy Portal
Tracking China’s transition to sustainable energy
Nuclear Energy and Fears
Hinkley Point C nuclear power station delayed and costs rise
By Simon Neville, PA City Editor, Jan 27, 2021
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Solar and Wind
Rare Earth Elements and America’s Security
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Jan 26, 2021
Solar Power from Space
By Donn Dears, Power For USA, Jan 29, 2021
[SEPP Comment: A variant of the Archimedes Solar Death Ray?]
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Other
Role of dams in reducing global flood exposure under climate change
By Staff Writers, Tsukuba, Japan (SPX) Jan 25, 2021
Role of dams in reducing global flood exposure under climate change
By Julien Boulange, Naota Hanasaki, Dai Yamazaki & Yadu Pokhrel, Nature Communications, Jan 18, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Would Nature publish the article if the title read simply: Role of dams in reducing global flood exposure?]
Biomass, Palm Oil, Wind-Parks: Climate Protection Measures Costing Tons Of Money, Destroying Forests
By P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, Jan 27, 2021
In Brazil, many smaller dams disrupt fish more than large hydropower projects
By Dan DiNicola for UW News, Seattle WA (SPX), Jan 28, 2021
Link to paper: Safeguarding migratory fish via strategic planning of future small hydropower in Brazil
By Thiago B. A. Couto, Mathis L. Messager & Julian D. Olden, Nature Sustainability, Jan 11, 2021
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Energy — Storage
Vistra Energizes Massive 1.2-GWh Battery System at California Gas Plant
By Sonal Patel, Power Mag, Jan 14, 2021
“…bringing the Moss Landing Energy Storage Facility’s total capacity to 400 MW/1,600 MWh.”
Alternative, Green (“Clean”) Vehicles
Biden Climate Executive Order: Government Vehicles to be Electric
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 27, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Great picture of an Army tank recharging at electric charging device. All that is needed is a camouflaged, towering wind turbine generating the electricity.]
Rise Of SUVs Complicates Efforts To Rein In Auto Emissions
By Scott Carpenter, Forbes, Jan 22, 2021
A climate in crisis calls for investment in direct air capture, new research finds
By Staff Writers, San Diego CA (SPX), Jan 21, 2021
Emergency deployment of direct air capture as a response to the climate crisis
By Ryan Hanna, Ahmed Abdulla, Yangyang Xu & David G. Victor, Nature Communications, Jan 14, 2021
Health, Energy, and Climate
CBS Shout Catastrophe, As Extreme Weather Deaths Drop To Record Lows
By Paul Homewood, Not a Lot of People Know That, Jan 28, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Showing that for CBS headlines and data seldom meet.]
Other Scientific News
Even Scientists Are Fooled By A Really Good Story
Certain kinds of scientific literature reviews can bias experts into being more optimistic about the potential outcome of a clinical trial than the data actually warrant.
By Alex Berezow, ACSH, Jan 21, 2021
Link to paper: Systematic review and narrative review lead experts to different cancer trial predictions: a randomized trial
By Michael Yu, et al, Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, Apr 1, 2021
Other News that May Be of Interest
China nixes Antony Blinken climate appeal over Uighur genocide claims
By Ebony Bowden, New York Post, Jan 28, 2021
What Thomas Sowell Can Teach Us About Standing Up to the Mob
By John Stossel, The Daily Signal, Jan 22, 2021
The Conversation: “the only country to have undertaken … successful … population control is China”
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 25, 2021
BELOW THE BOTTOM LINE
John Kerry: Gas Industry Workers Who Lose Their Jobs Can Go ‘Make The Solar Panels’
By Tim Pearce, Daily Wire, Jan 27, 2021
[SEPP Comment: In China? An experience pipeline welder who makes over $100,000 per year will be pleased to receive $25,000 as a solar panel installer.]
As storm sets up to pummel Tahoe, meteorologists forecast a future without snow
By Julie Brown, SFGATE, Jan 26, 2021
“By 2100, Tahoe is expecting a 3.6 to 9 degree temperature increase.”
Doomsday Clock stays at closest point to midnight
By Rebecca Kheel, The Hill, Jan 27, 2021
Friday Funny: Another last chance to save the world from Climate Change
By Anthony Watts, WUWT, Jan 29, 2021
NYT Climate Action Book Review: “How to Blow Up a Pipeline”
By Eric Worrall, WUWT, Jan 26, 2021
Nuclear war could trigger big El Niño and decrease seafood
Unprecedented warming in equatorial Pacific Ocean could last up to seven years
News Release Rutgers University, Jan 25, 2021 [H/t Bernie Kepshire]
Link to paper: Nuclear Niño response observed in simulations of nuclear war scenarios
By Joshua Coupe, et al. Communications Earth & Environment, Jan 22, 2021
[SEPP Comment: Previously, the threat of nuclear war was global winter.]
1. Biden Gives Regulators a Free and Heavy Hand
His idea of ‘modernizing’ rules is to assert they have benefits that are ‘impossible to quantify.’
By Mick Mulvaney and Joe Grogan, WSJ, Jan 26, 2021
TWTW Summary: The former OMB director and former associate director for health issues write:
“Even in Washington, hardly anyone understands what the Office of Management and Budget does. Yet buried in the 2½-foot stack of President Biden’s first-day executive orders is hard evidence that someone in the new administration not only understands the OMB but knows how to use it. As a result, the business climate in this country will be made dramatically worse. Forget reregulation; this is the beginning of hyperregulation.
“You probably didn’t pay attention to “Modernizing Regulatory Review,” a presidential memo released Jan. 20. Regulatory law is arcane and generally boring, but its effects can be monumental. Congress defers much of the actual work of governing—producing the rules and regulations that implement laws—to the executive branch. For decades the primary protection against an abuse of this power has been a requirement that a regulation’s costs must not outweigh its benefits. While each agency does its own cost-benefit analyses based on its own rules, OMB directs the agencies on how to do that and oversees the results. The new presidential memo tells OMB how to do that. The effects will filter down to every federal agency.
“The presidential memo, similar to an executive order, is intended to ‘ensure that the review process promotes policies that reflect new developments in scientific and economic understanding, fully accounts for regulatory benefits that are difficult or impossible to quantify, and does not have harmful anti-regulatory or deregulatory effects’ (emphasis added as italics in original).
“Translated from OMB-speak into English, that means throw out traditional measures, use anything you can possibly find to promote the benefit side of the cost-benefit analysis, and don’t do anything that might impair new regulation or remove old rules. The message from the Biden administration is that wherever cost-benefit analyses might create an impediment to regulation, OMB should feel free to throw out the math and use whatever it can find in the annals of some fringe academic journal to justify the new rules.
“What is the scope of these changes? Pretty much everything: ‘These recommendations should provide concrete suggestions on how the regulatory review process can promote public health and safety, economic growth, social welfare, racial justice, environmental stewardship, human dignity, equity, and the interests of future generations,’ the presidential memo instructs.
The applications are almost limitless. Want to regulate agricultural drainage ditches as ‘navigable waters,’ subject to federal rules and restrictions? Don’t worry about whether food costs might rise or farmers might go bankrupt. You can offset those costs with the societal ‘benefit’ of promoting the interests of future generations. Never mind that it can’t be measured. As long as it serves the desired end, that will be good enough.”
After praising the benefits of deregulation under Trump, the authors conclude:
“Americans should heed Mr. Biden’s call for national unity but also hold his administration to his inaugural commitment to adhere to truth and facts. National unity can’t grow out of pseudoscience, invented facts and metaphysical benefits. The Biden administration should reconsider the memo on regulatory review and reaffirm its commitment to concrete, transparent and provable cost-benefit analyses in its regulatory practice.”
2. Biden’s Age of Climate Decadence
He would literally do everything differently if he really cared about our carbon risks.
By Holman Jenkins, Jr. WSJ, Jan 26, 2021
TWTW Summary: The journalist writes:
“With Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s famous quip in 1980, it mattered whether he said Republicans had become ‘the’ or ‘a’ party of ideas.
“‘The’ might imply that the mantle of ideas regularly shifts between parties, but history offers little support for this view. Long periods of mental stagnation seem to define both parties. No ideas are present in the climate spasms of the Biden administration, just a doubled helping of patronage handouts to established interest groups.
“Ideas briefly flourished in the early 2000s, when the debate was between a carbon tax and an inferior carbon tax, known as cap and trade, which dismayed experts but pleased corporate lobbyists by bestowing an advantage on existing emitters. Cap and trade almost passed.
“Then Barack Obama was elected. Al Gore debouched himself of a new edict. An alleged climate crisis no longer required any unpopular energy taxes at all. By some process not explained, the emergency had become a political free lunch, requiring congresspersons only to do what they like doing anyway, dishing out subsidies to favored constituents.
“The youthful activism of John Kerry, Mr. Biden’s new climate czar, is your model here. It had little discernible impact on the Vietnam War but it did have an impact on Mr. Kerry’s career.
“Suppose you actually cared about climate change. You would not throw episodic subsidies at things that can survive only as long as you are subsidizing them. You would try to set in motion long-term trends that have the advantage of being in accordance with existing trends.”
After discussing no major effort by the Obama administration despite the IPCC ridiculous storyline of RCP 8.5, the journalist continues:
“What else would a ‘party of ideas’ do? Focus dollars on basic battery research, already heading in the right direction thanks to chips small and powerful enough to enable portable computing to take off.
“Follow up the 2015 petition from nuclear-medicine experts to update with new science our understanding of the health risks of low levels of ionizing radiation, which every living thing is bathed in. The overwhelming costs imposed on the nuclear power industry have less to do with accident avoidance than with containment of trivial amounts of radiation, which coal plants are perversely allowed to emit. Rethinking our safety standards in light of today’s better evidence would mean, as one study puts it, ‘expansion of nuclear electricity generation could be facilitated’ to fight climate change.
“If your climate concerns are a circus of pretense for conformity purposes, you won’t care about any of this. But some on the left have started to rebel against the anticarbon cause’s capture by pork interests.
“Donald Trump, with his usual noisy ambiguity, actually seemed to be referring to the climate lobby, not climate science, when he used the term ‘hoax’—’it’s a moneymaking industry.’ He finds himself now in accord with the latest film by Michael Moore, the left-wing filmmaker.
“Mr. Trump dumped the Paris climate deal that important greens already considered ‘worthless words.’ He promised to get government’s foot off the coal industry but he also promised the same for natural gas, which continues to displace coal and actually shrink U.S. emissions.
“Unfortunately, America is absurdly supplied with citizens whose professed passion for climate science is not matched by a desire to know anything about it. The press is worse but here technology will play a positive role thanks to the relentlessness with which it replaces humans who can only say and do repetitive things. [Boldface added]
“Many true climate worriers have begun to register that, when a scientific problem becomes a religion, it doesn’t help. Advocates are satisfied to exhibit their virtue rather than do the hard work, and hard thinking, to ensure practical, noncorrupt results.
On some level, the public relies on the media and political elites to think seriously about matters that it doesn’t pay for the average voter to think seriously about. Often the public is let down. Climate effects and related issues of cost and benefit are one such case. Until this changes, the biggest lie will be the lie that the Biden administration is doing anything about the problem of climate change. [Boldface added]