Junk science?     Junkman?       Feedback      Archives & Links

Archives - April 2007

April 30, 2007

"Dr. Conyers, I Presume" - "Tuesday was Africa Malaria Day, and Michigan Representative John Conyers marked the event by inviting something called the Pesticide Action Network to Capitol Hill to denounce DDT as an unsafe malaria intervention. What was he thinking?

Malaria, which is spread through mosquito bites, kills about a million people annually, mostly children and pregnant women in Africa. We're not sure where the House Judiciary Chairman got his medical expertise, but he won't reduce that death toll by promoting disinformation about DDT and malaria prevention. And at taxpayers' expense, no less.

PAN and a shrinking band of other activist know-nothings insist that employing DDT against malaria is "especially dangerous for developing infants and children," but there is no scientific basis to the claim. Zip. Spraying DDT in the amounts needed to keep malarial mosquitoes at bay has never been shown to harm humans, animals or the environment. Their hostility to DDT reflects an animus held on the extremes of the modern environmentalist movement against pesticides of any sort -- even if they can save human lives.

The World Health Organization, the Global Fund and the U.S. Agency for International Development have overcome this hostility and endorsed DDT as a safe and effective tool for fighting malaria. Even environmentalist groups, such as the World Wildlife Fund and Greenpeace, that once deplored DDT have piped down.

Mr. Conyers is very busy these days issuing subpoenas to anything that moves in the Beltway, but he and his staff might at least brush up on their public-health science before sponsoring their next medical seminar." (Wall Street Journal)

"Campaign Against Malaria Making Gains in Africa" - "This past week, global health activists marked Africa Malaria Day (April 25) with a campaign to educate the public about the disease and a pledge to work for increased cooperation and funding. It was also an occasion to highlight progress made against malaria, which kills up to a million children under five each year in sub-Saharan Africa. From Washington, VOA's William Eagle reports." (VOA)

"Sunday Matinee" - "How do we come to know what we “know to be true?” (Junkfood Science)

Ya think? "Binge-eating disorders double" - "THE number of Australians with eating disorders has doubled in the past decade and specialists think obesity hysteria could be to blame." (AAP)

"Food as judge" - "Wow, just wow. These posts offer some powerful stuff." (Junkfood Science)

"Of concern to parents: what are children really being told in school?" - "As a parent, you send your child off to school, hoping he/she will be safe. Like most parents, you care that your child is protected from threats, needless scares and things that could endanger his/her health and future. Yet, few parents realize that the things being taught in schools in the name of wellness are doing just that." (Junkfood Science)

Hmm... "Workplace cancers cause 200,000 deaths a year: WHO" - "GENEVA - At least 200,000 people die every year from cancers related to their workplaces, mainly from inhaling asbestos fibers and second-hand tobacco smoke, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Friday. The U.N. agency said every 10th lung cancer death is related to occupational hazards, and about 125 million people worldwide are exposed to asbestos at work, leading to at least 90,000 deaths each year." (Reuters)

... speaking of dodgy stats: "California backs lowering formaldehyde in wood" - "SAN FRANCISCO - California regulators adopted new standards on Thursday to slash the amount of formaldehyde allowed in wood products, a move they say will save hundreds of people from getting cancer every year." (Reuters)

"Follow up to 'Cell Phones Kill Bees' story" - "About two weeks ago I published this story about the loony idea that was proposed by some researcher in Europe about "cell phone radiation may be killing bees". I pointed out that it was garbage then, as it is now." (Watt's Up With That?)

"The tragedy of overwhelming fear" - "As if there weren’t already enough scary things in the news, today’s London-based paper, The Independent, heightened concerns over another invisible danger that is tasteless, odorless and supposedly putting children at risk: electronic smog." (Junkfood Science)

More chic than tinfoil: "The woman who needs a veil of protection from modern life" - "No, she's NOT a beekeeper. This woman believes that her bizarre headgear can save her from the dangerous electrosmog all around us. Can she possibly be right?" (Daily Mail)

In a word: no. More like she's spent too much time with her head in the oven, sniffing for gas leaks.

"Thou shalt not go religiously green" - "Missed your chance to waste a fiver on that must-have eco-accessory, the “I’m not a plastic bag” bag? You can still grab my £5 supermarket carrier bags bearing the hand-felt-tipped legend, “I’m not a plastic Green”.

Environmentalism may not be saving the planet, but to judge by the news it seems to be conquering the world. Some of us have long thought that it is assuming pseudo-religious status, with its self-righteous claims to absolute truth and demands for sinners to repent. Now comes confirmation that, just as old Labour genuflected to new Labour, so our old state religion has converted to the new one." (Mick Hume, London Times)

"Evian Criminals: The new snob appeal of tap water." - "Last month, the San Francisco Chronicle spotted a hot new food trend in the Bay Area. Instead of offering diners a choice of still or sparkling bottled water with their (inevitably) locally grown delectables, trendoid restaurants such as Incanto, Poggio, and Nopa now offer glorified tap water. Sustainable-dining pioneer Chez Panisse has also joined the crowd, tossing Santa Lucia overboard for filtered municipal water, carbonated on-site. The reason: It takes a lot of energy to create a bottle of water and ship it from Europe to California. And so of-the-moment bistros can boost their enviro cred by giving away tap water instead of selling promiscuously marked-up bottled water. "Our whole goal of sustainability means using as little energy as we have to," Mike Kossa-Rienzi, general manager of Chez Panisse, told the Chronicle. "Shipping bottles of water from Italy doesn't make sense." (Daniel Gross, Slate)

New podcast: Global Warming Podcast News 3 -- Your host: Professor Philip Stott.

Video: "Daily Show Slams Green Celebs" - "This video from the Daily Show is too funny not to post. Lewis Black looks at Earth Day programming in this episode of Back in Black. He takes a stab at Matt Damon’s junk mail tip, as well as Oprah’s green show in general. He finishes it all up with a special slam to MTV’s Pimp My Ride, biodiesel edition. “So there you have it, advice on saving the planet Earth from a bunch of people who couldn’t even save Planet Hollywood.” (Ecorazzi)

"IPCC AR4" - "IPCC AR4 is online - thanks to readers for pointing this out. I didn’t notice any press releases or hoopla. The lead author for the millennial paleoclimate section was Keith Briffa, who takes a realclimate line on the debate - surprise, surprise. Their comments on M&M are pretty much the same as in the Second Draft - they essentially disregarded the comments by Ross and myself, even on what we are supposed to have said. The Team features prominently in the chapter - a search on Mann turns up 92 mentions; Briffa 36 mentions; Jones 36 mentions;" (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

IPCC AR4 WG1: full text - The climate panel's working group I has just published the full report: (The Reference Frame)

"Crunching the IPCC's numbers" - "The following analysis was sent to me by an astute reader, who is also a geophysicist, who says that he prepared this:" (Gust of Hot Air)

"Be prepared, be very prepared" - "I have always thought that it is extremely strange that all statistical analysis done on temperatures in the scientific literature as only been done on maximum and minimum temperatures. This despite the billions of dollars that are spent in the area.

Surely, someone would have a proper scientific analysis of time based temperature? Unfortunately, this has not been the case." (Gust of Hot Air)

"Britain basks in hottest April since 1865" - "Britain has enjoyed its warmest April for more than 140 years, with an average temperature of 11.1 degrees Celsius, meteorologists said Saturday. The previous record was set in 1865, with an average of 10.6 degrees Celsius. The record-breaking temperatures are likely to continue Saturday and Sunday, reaching up to 23 degrees Celsius in some areas. Latest figures from the Met Office suggest that the past year could be the warmest for a decade, with average figures of 11.6 degrees Celsius." (AFP)

Gosh, it's the weather! "Summer in April: A very unlikely event?" - "In Holland, April 2007 will break a series of records: the hottest, driest, en sunniest April ever. With respect to heat and drought this month does not fit into the bandwidth of previous April months, in spite of its capricious nature. Global warming has made the high temperatures less unlikely, but the main cause is an extraordinarily persistent high pressure system that brought dry, sunny and warm weather to a large part of Europe. This pattern is not predicted to occur more frequently by the current climate models, so as far as we know now it must be ascribed to a chance fluctuation in the weather." (KNMI)

"In 1979, it was the Cold that Had This Town Concerned Enough to Contemplate a Dome!" - Time Magazine, December 10, 1979

In the Wall Street Journal article we covered last week, James Fleming warned” potential fixes (to our global warming problem) being discussed reflect an overconfidence in technology as well as an ignorance of the history of failed efforts to control the weather.” I would add the word “unnecessary” also. Here is a Time Magazine story from 1979 about an American City planning a dome to protect itself from increasing cold and rising energy bills due to the oncoming “ice age”. It was after the 3rd in a series of frigid US winters and at the peak of the talk of global cooling, believed to have a high degree of certainty because there was a “consensus” of scientists. “See “A Dome for Winooski?”

It also followed years of media hype about the coming ice age including this Time Magazine story in 1974 Another Ice Age? and this original Newseeek article in 1975 A Cooling World. (ICECAP)

Exchange with Writer on story about Mom’s Detroit Billboards on Global Warming - Detroit Sun

In a Detroit Sun Story by a fine architerecture writer and blogger. Michael Hodges, he described how one Detroit mom, Margaret Hetherman, a Roseville native now living in New York City, got tired of explaining to her 4-year-old that there just wasn’t enough snow to go sledding.  Hetherman sat down, coined an advertising campaign, and—at her own expense—mounted five billboards around the Detroit area, all with the tagline, “Take Back the Weather.” In the story the writer noted a string of snowless New York winters led Margaret to worry that her daughter, Lily, will only know snow in fairy tales.

That struck a chord with me as I knew that New York City, though seeing below normal snowfall this year, had experienced a record 4 consecutive winter with over 40 inches of snow ending last winer for the first time since records began in the 1860s. And I also know variations in snowfall and temperatures in Michigan tie to the PDO and its effect on the frequencies of El Nino and La Nina and have little to do with ‘global warming’. See some of the exchange with the writer in the following E-mail_Exchange.doc (ICECAP)

The Oceans Role in Greenland and the Arctic Region Temperatures and Ice - In the prior blog, we showed how multidecadal ocean cycles were playing a role in temperature swings over the past 110 years and could be used to explain much of the variance. In the attached brief paper, I show how the same can be said for Greenland and the Arctic where these factors play a far more convincing role in the observed changes than greenhouse gases.  Greenland_and_the_Arctic_Region.doc (ICECAP)

Well duh! "EU Puts Money Over Environment - Campaigners" - "BRUSSELS - The European Union remains too focused on the costs of protecting the environment despite sending strong signals on its plans to fight climate change, environmental groups said on Friday." (Reuters)

"Global warming debate 'irrational': scientists" - "The current debate about global warming is "completely irrational," and people need to start taking a different approach, say two Ottawa scientists." (Standard-Freeholder)

"Satellites Shed Light On Global Warming" - "As climate change continues to make headlines across the world, participants at the 2007 Envisat Symposium this week are hearing how Earth observation satellites allow scientists to better understand the parameters involved in global warming and how this is impacting the planet." (ESA)

Well yes, satellites do shed light on this whole "global warming" thing -- and expose it as nothing exciting.

"The heat is on for greenhouse gas methane" - "BANGKOK - Across the globe, chickens and pigs are doing their bit to curb global warming. But cows and sheep still have some catching up to do. The farm animals produce lots of methane, a potent greenhouse gas that gets far less public attention than carbon dioxide yet is at the heart of efforts to fight climate change." (Reuters)

Not really, atmospheric methane has been more or less in equilibrium for the last decade.

Really? "Experts Meet on UN Report: Warming Can be Slowed" - "BANGKOK - After two gloomy United Nations reports on global warming, scientists and governments on Monday begin looking at how to fight climate change with green groups saying the time for bickering is over." (Reuters)

And just how does one "fix what ain't broke"?

Oh boy... "Panel links climate change to new national security threat" - "NEW YORK — Growing concern surrounds a new national security threat, an insidious trend that could foster terrorism worldwide and draw our armed forces into messy regional conflicts in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

No, it isn't nuclear proliferation. Nor is it a new brand of religious fundamentalism.

It's global warming." (Associated Press)

"Main Conclusions of UN Climate Panel's Third Report" - "Following are some of the main findings of a draft report by the UN climate panel due for release in Bangkok on Friday." (Reuters)

"No scientific basis for global warming contention" - "The global-warming mania continues with more and more hype and less and less thinking." (Dr Kelvin Kemm, Engineering News)

Kemm patiently explains Kilimanjaro precipitation and sublimation processes and why the glacier reduction is not a symptom of "global warming".

"Vatican closes climate conference, some panelists consider warming beneficial" - "VATICAN CITY: Vatican officials closed a conference on climate change Friday that heard from scientists, ministers and religious leaders about the negative — and sometimes positive — impacts of climate change.

"Not all the scientific world is crying disaster," Cardinal Renato Martino, who heads the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, told Vatican Radio at the start of the two-day conference he hosted.

"There are a good number of scientists who consistently don't view these climactic changes in a negative light, and in fact say that these phenomena recur over the course of years and eras and sometimes they can have favorable results for agriculture and development." (Associated Press)

or, as The Guardian spins it: "Pope puts focus on climate change, environment" - "THE Vatican has added its voice to warnings from churches around the world that climate change and abuse of the environment is against God's will." (The Guardian)

"Ocean currents to blame for warming: expert" - "THE United States' leading hurricane forecaster says global ocean currents, not human-produced carbon dioxide, are responsible for global warming. William Gray, a Colorado State University researcher, also said the Earth may begin to cool on its own in five to 10 years." (Sunday Telegraph)

What rubbish... "Australia Drought is Climate Change Warning - UK" - "BEIJING - Drought-hit Australia may offer a warning of how climate change threatens core human needs, as the continent's food bowl faces the prospect of having irrigation cut off, Britain's climate change ambassador said." (Reuters)

... drought is Australia's norm.

"Plants do not emit methane" - "A recent study in Nature suggested that terrestrial plants may be a global source of the potent greenhouse gas methane, making plants substantial contributors to the annual global methane budget. This controversial finding and the resulting commotion triggered a consortium of Dutch scientists to re-examine this in an independent study." (Blackwell Publishing Ltd.)

Cool, now we're right back where we started wondering why there's so much methane in the atmosphere above forests, or not.

"St George's mushroom" - "The St George's mushroom is so named because in days long gone it could be harvested on the saint's day, 23rd April. However, a few decades ago, the average fruiting time for this fungus was mid-May. More recently, this has moved forward to 22nd or 23rd April, making the name apt once more. Although reported as a sign of current climate change, the other implication is, of course, that the climate in this country was indeed warmer in centuries gone by. This is further indirect evidence of the Medieval Warm Period (or Medieval Climate Optimum), which was certainly not brought about by profligate use of fossil fuel by industry." (Scientific Alliance)

It's a joke alright: "Lunch with the FT: James Lovelock" - "A couple of times in the course of my lunch with Professor James Lovelock, I catch our waitress cocking an eyebrow at me in mild surprise. As instructed by Lovelock’s publisher, I asked for the quietest table in the restaurant. But, between us, my guest and I manage to make enough noise – mainly hoots of laughter – to attract the attention of other diners.

If they could hear the rest of our conversation, they would be even more surprised. ”Humanity will be reduced to a few breeding pairs.” ”An enormous food shortage will kill off most people.” ”Watch the Dutch. Half of northern Europe will be under water, and there’s Holland behind a 10ft surrounding wall carrying on business as usual.” More laughter. Lovelock is a very jolly prophet of the apocalypse." (Financial Times)

"Light bulbs that don't signify ideas" - "Everything's difficult, isn't it? In the Democratic presidential candidates' debate, Sen. Barack Obama was asked what he personally was doing to save the environment, and replied that his family was "working on" changing their light bulbs.

Is this the new version of the old joke? How many senators does it take to "work on" changing a light bulb? One to propose a bipartisan commission. One to threaten to de-fund the light bulbs. One to demand the impeachment of Bush and Cheney for keeping us all in the dark. One to vote to pull out the first of the light bulbs by fall of this year with a view to getting them all pulled out by the end of 2008." (Mark Steyn, Sun-Times)

Hot air reaching gale force: "Gore Visits UN, Offers Help on Global Warming" - "UNITED NATIONS - Former Vice President Al Gore offered on Friday to work closely with the United Nations in furthering programs on global warming, the UN secretary-general said." (Reuters)

"Hiding your light bulbs under a bushel of bull" - "Now that it is certain that China will pass the United States as the world's biggest source of greenhouse gasses in 2007, will the Al Gore-Maurice Strong Choir be singing from the other side of the hymnbook?" (Judi McLeod, CFP)

The crone... "A Glacial Pace on Warming" - "Weeks after the Supreme Court’s momentous ruling that the federal government could and probably should regulate greenhouse gases, pressure for decisive action continues to build." (New York Times)

... still completely wrong. The mid-troposphere might show a small step warming recently -- or not. The world is not behaving anything like that modeled and there is zero evidence the various multiplication factors applied are justified at all. Perhaps its time to highlight this little examination once more.

"US-Japan Commit to Ease Global Warming, No Targets" - "WASHINGTON - Japan and the United States on Friday renewed their commitment to fight global warming but steered clear of specific steps, including ways for Washington to cooperate on a post-Kyoto protocol framework." (Reuters)

"Canada Announces Goals for Reducing Emissions" - "OTTAWA, April 26 — Canadian industries must cut the rate at which they produce gases linked to global warming by 18 percent over the next three years, the federal government said Thursday." (New York Times)

"Gore calls green plan a 'fraud'" - "Tory proposal 'designed to mislead' Canadians, U.S. lobbyist says." (Toronto Star)

Hmm... well, we guess it's a topic Gore knows a lot about, even if he's totally ignorant about climate.

Low blow John! "Baird fires back at Gore in climate-change exchange" - "Minister says Tory green plan will accomplish more than former U.S. vice-president ever did." (Mark Reid, CanWest News Service)

No fair bringing actual results into this, everyone knows Al talks a good game and if anyone knows fraud, it's Al!

"Gore's guru disagreed" - "In the history of the global-warming movement, no scientist is more revered than Roger Revelle of Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Harvard University and University of California San Diego. He was the co-author of the seminal 1957 paper that demonstrated that fossil fuels had increased carbon-dioxide levels in the air. Under his leadership, the President's Science Advisory Committee Panel on Environmental Pollution in 1965 published the first authoritative U.S. government report in which carbon dioxide from fossil fuels was officially recognized as a potential global problem. He was the author of the influential 1982 Scientific American article that elevated global warming on to the public agenda. For being "the grandfather of the greenhouse effect," as he put it, he was awarded the National Medal of Science by the first President Bush.

Roger Revelle's most consequential act, however, may have come in his role as a teacher, during the 1960s at Harvard. Dr. Revelle inspired a young student named Al Gore." (Lawrence Solomon, Financial Post)

"Washington diary: Al Gore running" - "So is Al Gore running? The answer was not just a resounding yes. It was delivered breathlessly, impatiently, punctuated by huffs and puffs. There were neatly formed beads of sweat running down his cheeks.

Al was definitely running. No doubt about it! Proof positive. He was running on the running machine at a hotel in Los Angeles where I also happened to be staying.

While I was ploughing gently and unambitiously through the waters of the nearby pool I spotted him in the gym. He was reading the local paper while working the Stairmaster/running machine for at least an hour. I could practically see the pounds flying off him.

The punditocracy has already decreed that one sure sign of Al Gore entering the 2008 presidential race is any evidence that he's serious about shedding post-Florida recount pounds. There you have it. A scoop!" (Matt Frei, BBC)

"Green plan's cost pegged at $8-billion a year" - "TORONTO, OTTAWA — Canadians will pay more for many of life's necessities under a new environmental strategy that falls far short of the Kyoto accord but reduces greenhouse-gas emissions faster than the Conservative government's first climate-change plan.

It is estimated the new proposal will cost the Canadian economy $7-billion to $8-billion a year." (Globe and Mail)

"Investors Cheer, Greens Jeer Canada Emissions Plan" - "CALGARY, Alberta - Most Canadian energy stocks got a lift on Friday as investors and oil bosses expressed relief that Ottawa's plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions avoided absolute caps and adherence to commitments under the Kyoto Protocol." (Reuters)

"Here lies Kyoto, dead and unloved" - "Ding-dong the Kyoto witch is dead, killed off by Canadian politicians -- Conservative and Liberal -- who never believed in it anyway.

The messy coup de grace was delivered Thursday by Environment Minister John Baird, standing in for the nation's leading, although now undercover, global warming sceptic, Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Meanwhile, the predictable festival of indignation marking Kyoto's demise was led by Stephane Dion, leader of the Liberals -- collectively the biggest bunch of hypocrites on Kyoto to ever darken a doorway in Ottawa.

Bad enough Harper now pretends to take global warming seriously. The Liberals pretended to do so for almost a decade after they signed Kyoto in 1998, then did nothing to implement it until they were tossed from power last year.

To know how dead Kyoto is, you only had to listen to the reaction of the special interest groups on Thursday, after Baird announced the Tories' "Kyoto-lite" plan, which is actually tougher on pollution than greenhouse gases." (Edmonton Sun)

"Andrew Coyne on the Tory global-warming plan: Kyoto hypocrisy is a bi-partisan affair" - "It took a bipartisan effort for Canada to miss its Kyoto targets, and it will take that same spirit of bipartisanship to miss the next ones. Never fear: History shows that, together, these two great parties are up to avoiding any task.

The latest set of targets to which the government of Canada has irrevocably committed itself — notably, a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from current levels by the year 2020 — are perfectly fine, as far as they go. Environmentalists may squawk that the new Conservative climate change plan marks the formal abandonment of our Kyoto targets, but that was effectively achieved over the last eight years of the Liberal government, when emissions, far from declining to 6% below 1990 levels, overshot by a mere 35%. In this, as in so many areas of late, the Tories are only signing on to Liberal policy." (Full Comment, National Post)

"'Frontline' scorches political parties for global warming" - "How did we get here, with global warming only grudgingly acknowledged by the mass public, now that it may well be too late to do anything about it?

The PBS investigative series "Frontline" goes back over the last three presidential administrations and lays out how it hasn't been the fault solely of the left or the right, but how it has been the legacy of politics as usual, with both Democrats and Republicans responsible." (Daily Herald)

Well might we wonder how we got here, with a significant percentage of lawmakers hysterical about the phantom menace.

"Global Warming Consensus Watch, Volume II" - "This week in the PowerBlog’s Global Warming Consensus Watch: A final pass at the Sheryl Crow/Toilet Paper controversy, just to ensure that the issue is wiped clean; The fight against climate change goes to 11; Global warming causes everything, and we’ve got professional athletes to prove it; and finally, what - if anything - are those carbon offsets offsetting?" (Acton Institute PowerBlog)

"Divisions over global warming threaten EU-US climate meeting" - "Divisions over climate change threaten to derail a set piece EU-US summit and overshadow moves to strengthen transatlantic economic ties. With time running out before Monday's meeting in Washington, some EU diplomats suggested that a weak declaration on global warming would be worse than no statement at all." (London Independent)

"China dream a nightmare for climate change" - "At the age of 27, marketing executive Zack Chen is living the modern China dream. Holidays in Europe, modern appliances at home and a high-paying job with a foreign car company.

The problem for the world as it tries to tackle climate change is that more than one billion other Chinese want to be just like him." (AFP)

And not one reason in the world they shouldn't.

Naivety in Australia's 8th State:  "Global gas market the way ahead" - "Inexorably the world seems to be moving to put a price on carbon emissions. Even the United States and Australia, which refused to join the Kyoto initiative, are taking part in discussions under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to decide what happens after the Kyoto commitments expire in 2012. And China, one of the "emerging economies" treated too leniently at Kyoto, has signalled it may be ready to join a global effort." (New Zealand Herald)

"Carbon-Neutral Is Hip, but Is It Green?" - "THE rush to go on a carbon diet, even if by proxy, is in overdrive." (New York Times)

D'oh! "Defra in storm over EU carbon scheme" - "The government department spearheading Britain’s effort to reduce carbon output is driving companies and individuals towards paying under a European Union system for emissions cuts that do not take place.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has also channelled more than half of £215m paid out under a pilot UK greenhouse gas trading scheme to just four companies which spent considerably less than they received on emissions cuts.

The first charge against Defra is that, under a new code of practice, it has been advising businesses and consumers wishing to offset their emissions to buy carbon credits through the EU or a separate UN carbon trading scheme. However, phase one of the EU emissions trading scheme (ETS) has been discredited for giving companies so many carbon credits – effectively permits to pollute – that no overall reduction in emissions took place." (Financial Times)

"EU Emissions to Rise, Despite Claims" - "BRUSSELS - One month after the European Union's leaders promised robust action against climate change, green campaigners have accused key EU bodies of implementing policies that will lead to increased emissions of greenhouse gases." (IPS)

"Still within our grasp" - "Discouraging inaction on the federal front gives Ontario an opportunity to lead the way on climate change. Are we up to the challenge?" (Toronto Star)

"Dubai could gain from EU aviation carbon-trading plan: US official" - "(DUBAI) - Dubai's position as a global aviation hub could be enhanced if the European Union introduces a carbon-trading scheme for aircraft, the head of the US civil aviation regulator said on Thursday.

Marion Blakey, administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, said more aircraft could begin using the airport as a hub to avoid the extra cost of the scheme.

"Dubai might benefit from the (carbon-trading) policy ... Air traffic could be diverted to it," she told reporters after meeting aviation officials in Dubai, a member of the United Arab Emirates (UAE)." (EU Business)

"EU green targets will damage rainforests" - "European union green fuel targets will accelerate the destruction of rainforests in South-East Asia and threaten the habitat of endangered species, such as the orang-utan.

In March EU leaders agreed to set a binding climate change target to make biofuel - energy sources made from plant material - account for 10 per cent of all Europe's transport fuels by 2020.

But the European Commission has admitted that the objective, which aims to cut carbon dioxide emissions, may have the unintended consequence of speeding up the destruction of tropical rainforests and peatlands in South-East Asia - actually increasing, not reducing, global warming." (London Telegraph)

"Dutch Say Green Fuel is Good -- If it's Really Green" - "AMSTERDAM - So-called green fuels are fine, but under a proposed law Dutch energy generators who use them will have to show they really do not harm the environment or deprive people of food." (Reuters)

Evidence Of Health Problems With Ethanol Fuels (Climate Science)

"The Nanny In Green: Mama Mike's Energy Plan" - "April 27, 2007 -- 'MAMA Mike' is at it again - telling New Yorkers how to live their lives. This time, he wants us to cut down on electricity. And pay a hefty price up front - for the hope of saving money down the road.

But Mayor Bloomberg's not just offering advice; he plans to force us to live as he sees fit: i.e., frugally, over the long-term - and green.

"None of us can afford to waste money," lectures the multibillionaire Bloomberg as he pushes his "PlaNYC 2030." (NY Post)

The latest in imaginative hand-wringing: "Icebergs Threaten Vast Russian Gas Project" - "MOSCOW - Russia's giant Shtokman gas field, one of the world's most challenging offshore projects, will face even greater problems as global warming unleashes vast icebergs into the Arctic, a senior scientist says." (Reuters)

"Fight Fire with Fire?" - "Will climate change doom humanity to an existence mimicking Dante's Inferno? Will nuclear proliferation threaten humanity with annihilation as depicted in Dr. Strangelove? An increasing number of pundits, policymakers and even environmentalists believe that nuclear energy can save us from massive death by climate change and will not lead to massive destruction by nuclear war. (Nuclear fuel making technologies can also be used to produce explosive material for nuclear weapons.) But as I wrote in a new Council on Foreign Relations report, Nuclear Energy: Balancing Benefits and Risks, this view oversells the contribution nuclear energy can make to strengthen energy security and reduce global warming while downplaying the dangers associated with this energy source." (Charles D. Ferguson, Think Tank Town (WashPost))

"Activists Decry Bank's Loan Approval for Uganda Dam" - "WASHINGTON, Apr 27 - Brushing aside concerns from environmentalists and rights groups, the World Bank said Thursday it will support the controversial Bujagali dam in Uganda with 360 million dollars in loans and guarantees." (IPS)

Dopey blighters: "MPs sign up to the campaign against excess packaging" - "More than 100 MPs have backed The Independent's campaign against excessive packaging as political support grows for action to reduce the millions of tonnes of wrappers and cartons dumped in the nation's bins." (London Independent)

A lot of that packaging is there to reduce spoilage and cut the vast quantity of perishables that were thrown out daily. More of it exists on non perishable items to reduce breakage and theft (much of the seemingly impenetrable packaging on small items is there to reduce the amount pocketed by those "shoppers" who'd rather not pay for their desired goods, leaving honest consumers to pick up the cost in higher prices overall). Manufacturers never add packaging just because they want to use up resources or increase their costs.

"Rural Residents Find Riches in Saltwater" - "SÃO JOSÉ DO SERIDÓ, Brazil, Apr 28 - A village in Brazil's dry Northeast region is putting to the test a project that began with machine to desalinise the little water available, and has ended up creating food and income and promoting sustainable agriculture." (Tierramérica)

"Tomatoes once tasted like cucumbers" - "Plant geneticists have identified a gene in wild tomatoes that would have made the fruit taste of cucumbers. The gene appears to have been inactivated as the plant was domesticated, they say. The discovery was made when studying a plant hybrid produced by breeding a modern, cultivated tomato with one of its wild ancestors." (RSC)

"Down on the pharm" - "A new breed of genetically modified crops could provide cheap drugs and vaccines for the developing world. Only one problem: what if they get into the food chain? Environment correspondent David Adam reports on 'pharming', the new GM front line" (The Guardian)

"GMO Rice Protein From China Used in EU Animal Feed" - "LONDON - The European Commission has expressed concern to China over unauthorised imports of genetically modified rice protein for use in animal feed, Britain's food safety watchdog said." (Reuters)

"Ben & Jerry’s Embraces GM Ice Cream Protein?" - "According to an article published in FoodNaviator.com, Unilever, the parent company of Ben & Jerry’s, one of the most visible anti-biotechnology ice cream makers in the United States, has moved closer to gaining approval in Europe to use an ice-structuring protein (ISP) isolated from genetically modified yeast." (Terry Etherton)

April 27, 2007

"Light Bulb Lunacy" - "How much money does it take to screw in a compact fluorescent lightbulb? About $4.28 for the bulb and labor -- unless you break the bulb. Then you, like Brandy Bridges of Ellsworth, Maine, could be looking at a cost of about $2,004.28, which doesn’t include the costs of frayed nerves and risks to health." (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

See also: Should There be a Ban on Incandescent Lamps? (Rod Elliott, ESP) and Ban the Bulb? (Luminus Maximus, American Thinker)

"Babies overfed to meet flawed ideal" - "Many new mothers come to dread the arcane growth charts produced by baby clinics to assess whether their new arrival is being under or overfed.

Now research is beginning to confirm what many mothers have long suspected - that the most commonly used growth charts, based on babies fed high-protein formula milk, wrongly classify lean but healthy babies as underweight. What's more, by encouraging mothers to overfeed their babies, the charts may be setting perfectly healthy children on the path to obesity." (NewScientist.com news service)

"Helping, not harming, seniors" - "A second study released this week tried everything possible to find something to support “obesity as an increasing public health problem.” While headlines ambiguously mentioned obesity may be associated with disability in the elderly, the association this study found was not what most people may have jumped to conclude. Being fat was not associated with increased risk for disability and was associated with the lowest mortality." (Junkfood Science)

Spectre at the feast (Number Watch)

"Celebrating Wrong Day" - "Last Sunday was marked by an orgy of celebrations of Earth Day, the worldwide annual event intended "to spark a revolution against environmental abuse."

Even the Bush administration had an Earth Day Web site, which stated, "Earth Day and every day is a time to act to protect our planet."

Watching the press coverage, you'd think that the earth was in imminent danger — that human life itself was on the verge of extinction. Technology is fingered as the perp.

Nothing could be further from the truth." (John Stossel, New York Sun)

"Earth Day 2007 - Time for a Review" - "Since the first Earth Day in 1970, the annual events have been an unrelenting criticism of the United States and its supposed abuses of the planet. Each seems presented as if the American environment were getting progressively worse.

Little or no effort is made to review the impact of environmental regulations and their costs and the benefits. Little or no reviews of trends in the environmental progress are being made. No efforts are being made to compare the environment of the US with those of many other nations. What has been the cost of compliance with our environmental regulations, and have we been getting our money’s worth. And what about the latest scare story, global warming?" (Michael R. Fox, Hawaii Reporter)

"Anti-malarial bed nets: the $10 dollar insult" - "Giving nets rather than DDT to Africans sends a powerfully paternalistic message: ‘You can hide from disease, but you cannot eradicate it.’" (Emily Hill, sp!ked)

"Chernobyl: 21 years later" - "Exactly 21 years ago, the Ukrainian power plant exploded. Last year, we wrote about thriving wildlife in Chernobyl. A new study has found that the long-term health impact of the Chernobyl disaster was negligible. All kinds of mortality rates were at most 1% higher than normally." (The Reference Frame)

Slide show: "Bill Gray’s Talk on Hurricanes and Global Warming At Bahamas Conference" - "Dr. William Gray has headed up the The Tropical Meteorology Project at Colorado State University and has has worked in the observational and theoretical aspects of tropical meteorological research for more than 40 years. He has pioneered in making hurricane season forecasts for 24 years now which won him the Neil Frank Award at the National Hurricane Conference in 1995. His Atlantic basin hurricane forecasts are published here.

Dr. Gray believes strongly in the role that the multidecadal behavior of the thermohaline circulation and the resultant Atlantic ocean temperatures has on hurricane frequency, strength and landfall potential. He downplays the role of greenhouse gases or global warming in hurricane activity. See his PPT here" (ICECAP)

New Podcast! Global Warming Podcast News 2 (Emeritus Professor Philip Stott) Listen now

"British Documentary ‘The Great Global Warming Swindle’ to Air on Swedish Television" - "While scientists in Great Britain try to get the documentary “The Great Global Warming Swindle” edited to fit their agenda as reported by NewsBusters, Swedish television will air the unedited program Friday." (News Busters)

"Reduce CO2 emissions: Hold your breath to save the planet" - "According to a press release from something called Earthjustice, "Scientific evidence of global warming has continued to mount -- so much so that the scientific debate is over."

But according to something called Earthreality, "Sayin' don't make it so."

In fact, I'll bet some beachfront property in Arizona that the debate will still be going strong 200 years from now. It will sound like this:

Theology professors in 2207 will argue that global warming was a secular religion. It had its own pope, Al Gore, a video Bible called "An Inconvenient Truth," and dozens of Hollywood apostles who were fundamentalist, "turn or burn" evangelists.

It had heretics ("deniers"), sinners (in SUVs) and saints (driving hybrids). It even had an elaborate system to buy indulgences by purchasing carbon credits, the same way the church once let sinners reserve a window table in heaven by tipping the priest at the door.

Anthropologists will say no, global warming was more like a purple Kool-Aid Jonestown cult. Members were willing to commit mass economic suicide to prove fanatic devotion to their apocalyptic vision." (Peter Bronson, The Enquirer)

"Bias In Climate Science Reporting Even In The Economist" - "The April 21, 2007 issue of the Economist had an interesting article entitled “Dengue Fever: A deadly scourge”

The article starts with “Millions at risk as a new outbreak of dengue fever sweeps Latin America”

“There is no vaccine. There is also no good way to treat it—just fluids and the hope that the fever will break. At first it seems like a case of severe flu, but then the fever rises, accompanied by headaches, excruciating joint pain, nausea and rashes. In its most serious form, known as dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF), it involves internal and external bleeding and can result in death. Fuelled by climate change, dengue fever is on the rise again throughout the developing world, particularly in Latin America.

Mexico identified 27,000 cases of dengue fever last year, more than four times the number in 2001. In El Salvador, whose population is not much more than 6% of Mexico’s, the number soared to 22,000 last year, a 20-fold increase on five years earlier. Uruguay recently reported its first case in 90 years. In Brazil, 135,000 cases were diagnosed in the first three months of this year, a rise of about a third over the same period last year. Paraguay, the country worst affected in relation to population size, has reported more than 25,000 cases so far this year, six times the total for the whole of last year—and even this is probably an underestimate.”

However, buried in this text is the remarkable claim that this disease is “Fuelled by climate change, dengue fever is on the rise again throughout the developing world, particularly in Latin America.” What is the scientific evidence for this statement that the dengue fever is “fuelled by climate change”?

I value reading the Economist but the insertion of such scientifically unsubstantiated claims detracts significantly from the journalistic integrity and accuracy of this magazine. It makes one wonder if other science articles in the Economist, in areas outside of my expertise, are similarly biased." (Climate Science)

"Gore delivers SOS to open Tribeca Film Fest" - "Festival begins with premiere of nine short films on global warming." (Associated Press)

"Pro-environment Candidates Fly to Presidential Debate on Separate Planes" - "Assume for a second that you were a pro-environment presidential candidate that believed in anthropogenic global warming.

Would you be trying to demonstrate that energy conservation and reducing carbon emissions were not just so many words in a stump speech, but something you truly believed in?

Would you also expect that an impartial press might be analyzing your activities to make sure they accurately reflected the green position you were preaching?

Apparently, if you were Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Chris Dodd, or Joe Biden, this would not be much of a concern." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"Global warming debate 'irrational': scientists" - "The current debate about global warming is "completely irrational," and people need to start taking a different approach, say two Ottawa scientists.

Carleton University science professor Tim Patterson said global warming will not bring about the downfall of life on the planet.

Patterson said much of the up-to-date research indicates that "changes in the brightness of the sun" are almost certainly the primary cause of the warming trend since the end of the "Little Ice Age" in the late 19th century. Human emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), the gas of concern in most plans to curb climate change, appear to have little effect on global climate, he said.

"I think the proof in the pudding, based on what (media and governments) are saying, (is) we're about three quarters of the way (to disaster) with the doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere," said Patterson. "The world should be heating up like crazy by now, and it's not. The temperatures match very closely with the solar cycles." (Standard-Freeholder)

"Defiant few who dare to doubt in a climate of fear" - "ONE of the unfortunate things about the climate change debate is that to be a climate change sceptic is to become a dirty word. To be a climate change sceptic has become about the most unfashionable thing you could possibly become. Kevin Rudd all but sneers at John Howard for being a sceptic about the long-term weather forecasts. Howard, of course, vehemently rejects that he's a sceptic. Well, he would. The word, as it relates to global warming and all the rest, has become code for fool, ignoramus, moron.

This phenomenon is more than unfortunate. Many an ancient media practitioner may also find it a bit odd. You don't have to go back too many years to discover a time when scepticism was regarded as an admirable quality. For a journalist, for example, to be described as sceptical was - when the scribe started out in this caper many years ago - a compliment. To be sceptical was good. It meant you thought about things, delved below the surface, didn't rule out other possibilities. It certainly didn't mean you were uninformed, gormless or weak in the head." (Errol Simper, The Australian)

"AFRICA: 'Extreme Water Events' Predicted" - "PRETORIA, Apr 26 - In Africa, 25 countries are expected to experience water scarcity or water stress in the next 20 to 30 years. This translates into 16 percent or 230 million of Africa's population facing water scarcity by 2025, and 32 percent or 460 million people living in water-stressed countries by that time." (IPS)

Funny isn't it? All this waffle about drought in a warmer, wetter world. The (maximum) direct effect of a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide is 1.2 K* (or °C, if you prefer) to which various "amplification factors" are applied even though they are not known to exist. In fact, the IPCC calculated change in forcing from greenhouse gases (combined) was 2.4 Wm-2 in 2000 for a net mean global temperature change since the late 19th Century of 0.4 - 0.8 K (°C) leading to the absurd conclusion that an additional 1.6 Wm-2 forcing will somehow produce warming of 2.2 - 2.6 K (°C). Exactly how an increase in forcing only two-thirds the magnitude of that already estimated to have occurred will deliver 3-5 times greater warming than that estimated to have occurred remains unclear but is assumed primarily due to an increase in that most ubiquitous greenhouse gas, water vapor. This brings us back to the original point -- if water magnification is the reason trivial warming is expected to be magnified into a problem then how will we end up with a deficit of... water vapor?

* NAS Climate Change Science: An Analysis of Some Key Questions, page 7:  As just mentioned, a doubling of the concentration of carbon dioxide (from the pre-Industrial value of 280 parts per million) in the global atmosphere causes a forcing of 4 W/m2. The central value of the climate sensitivity to this change is a global average temperature increase of 3°C (5.4°F), but with a range from 1.5°C to 4.5°C (2.7 to 8.1°F) (based on climate system models: see section 4). The central value of 3°C is an amplification by a factor of 2.5 over the direct effect of 1.2°C (2.2°F).

"U.N. Climate Scientists Write Off Africa" - "The United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) clearly believes that Africa is incapable of developing a 19th-century market economy in the 21st century. Where's the outrage?" (Patrick J. Michaels, American Spectator)

"Could Global Warming Be Halted by Controlling the Weather?" - "Frustrated with the limits of public policy to tackle global warming, some scientists say the time has come to engineer a way to control the weather. The idea might seem appealing, says a science scholar, but it could have potentially harmful ramifications." (The Informed Reader, WSJ)

"The Climate Engineers" - "Beyond the security checkpoint at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Ames Research Center at the southern end of San Francisco Bay, a small group gathered in November for a conference on the innocuous topic of “managing solar radiation.” The real subject was much bigger: how to save the planet from the effects of global warming. There was little talk among the two dozen scientists and other specialists about carbon taxes, alternative energy sources, or the other usual remedies. Many of the scientists were impatient with such schemes. Some were simply contemptuous of calls for international cooperation and the policies and lifestyle changes needed to curb greenhouse-gas emissions; others had concluded that the world’s politicians and bureaucrats are not up to the job of agreeing on such reforms or that global warming will come more rapidly, and with more catastrophic consequences, than many models predict. Now, they believe, it is time to consider radical measures: a technological quick fix for global warming." (James R. Fleming, Wilson Quarterly)

"Ice Shrinks, Birds Migrate Early in Warmer Arctic" - "Two climate activists studying the region stripped off to swimming costumes and sat on the ice by the fjord to highlight risks of climate change. "If the climate keeps warming, the Arctic might be warm enough for swimming," said Rob Bell, in chill temperatures of about -5 degrees Celsius. They did not take the plunge." (Reuters)

"Climate catastrophes in the Solar System" - "Earth sits between two worlds that have been devastated by climate catastrophes. In the effort to combat global warming, our neighbours can provide valuable insights into the way climate catastrophes affect planets." (ESA)

Not really, Venus has a super-dense carbon dioxide and sulfuric acid atmosphere at pressures roughly 90 times that of Earth even though it is roughly the same size, this and its nearness to the Sun explain its temperature and Earth is in zero danger of human emissions triggering a similar fate. Mars, the last of the "inner planets," has a very thin carbon dioxide atmosphere (less than 1% of Earth's atmospheric pressure) and insufficient solar warming to be comfortable for humans even if it had an atmosphere to suit. Neither planet is particularly instructive regarding our water world's climate.

"Ocean iron and CO2 interaction studied" - "A French study suggested that iron supply changes from deep water to the ocean's surface might have a greater effect on atmospheric CO2 than thought." (UPI)

"Ocean's 'twilight zone' plays important role in climate change" - "A major study has shed new light on the dim layer of the ocean called the "twilight zone"—where mysterious processes affect the ocean's ability to absorb and store carbon dioxide accumulating in our atmosphere." (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

Milking Europe: "Gazprom to sell Brazilian carbon credits to Europe" - "The UK-based marketing and trading subsidiary of Russia's Gazprom has signed a six-year agreement with Propower do Brasil to acquire carbon emission reduction credits awarded to Propower's renewable energy biomass power generation plant in Guarapuava, Brazil. The credits will be those awarded by the Kyoto Protocol's clean development mechanism (CDM), which allows industrialized countries to invest in emission-reducing projects in developing countries as an alternative to more costly carbon emission reductions (CER) in their own countries." (Energy Business Review)

"New CBO Report Exposes Failures Of C02 Cap-and-Trade Schemes" - "The CBO has revealed that a C02 cap-and-trade allocation scheme will result in a transfer of wealth from poor to rich." (EPW)

Foolishly "States take lead in cutting carbon emissions" - "At least 21 states and the District of Columbia are on track to trim 108 million metric tons of carbon dioxide a year." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"BP's Browne urges climate agency to fight warming" - "PALO ALTO, California, April 26 - BP Plc Chief Executive John Browne on Thursday called for the formation of an international climate agency to tackle global warming.

Browne, in a speech at Stanford University in Silicon Valley south of San Francisco, said the climate agency should have the United States, European Union and China as lead players and should be independent of the United Nations.

"A new entity without any history would be good," Browne said." (Reuters)

"Means Exist to Cut Emissions, But is There the Will?" - "COLOMBO - The tools exist to cut greenhouse gas emissions enough to meet aggressive global warming caps, but it may take more catastrophes like Hurricane Katrina to forge the political will, a top UN expert said. "We have a fair degree of confidence that the technologies exist. The question is: How much cost are we willing to bear?" (Reuters)

No, there isn't 'the will' and neither should there be since carbon emission caps can and will do absolutely nothing useful.

"Climate change not behind bushfires: PM" - "Prime Minister John Howard has poured cold water on debate linking Australia's extreme bushfires with climate change.

Announcing a $61.2 million funding packaging to fight bushfires, Mr Howard said global warming was not solely to blame for the summer's scorching blazes.

The prime minister said Australia was historically a dry country and some people behaved stupidly, pointing the finger at arsonists.

"The reality is that this is a dry country and people behave stupidly and in a criminal fashion and start bushfires and we need a capacity to deal with them," Mr Howard told reporters in Melbourne.

"But the idea that bushfires weren't on the scene until there was a debate about climate change is wrong." (AAP)

"Is China outdoing US in curbing carbon?" - "Its plans to limit emissions and boost efficiency could undercut a key argument against carbon dioxide limits in the US." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Regardless of whether CO2 emissions are really a problem, and we see zero evidence they are, the Chinese are quite blatant about their motivation paying lip service to AGW hysteria -- they want silly Westerners to pay for desperately needed energy infrastructure and are quite happy taking money for nothing too.

Thank goodness... "Australia failing Kyoto targets" - "JOHN Howard's stance on climate change is in tatters with new figures confirming Australia will exceed the Kyoto Protocol emissions targets by the end of this decade." (Herald Sun)

... the economy really is booming. That just might mean we can afford the water infrastructure we so desperately need.

"Corus: EU scheme a threat to steel producers" - "A FLAGSHIP EU scheme to cut pollution is “counter-productive” and could damage the Welsh steel industry, the chief executive of Corus warned yesterday." (Western Mail)

"Germany Sets Tougher Goals to Protect Climate" - "BERLIN - Germany aims to cut electricity consumption by 11 percent by 2020 and generate over a quarter of its power through environmentally friendly methods, Environment Minister Sigmar Gabriel said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Canada won't meet Kyoto emission targets" - "TORONTO- Canada's conservative government acknowledged Thursday it will not meet its Kyoto Protocol targets and announced a new environmental plan with a less ambitious goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Under the 1997 Kyoto accord on climate change, the former Liberal government committed to a 6 percent cut in greenhouse emissions from 1990 levels by 2012. But the country's emissions are now 30 percent above 1990 levels." (Associated Press)

"The Latest In 'Green Transportation'"

"Ford Motor Company, fast losing ground to its competitors, has moved aggressively into the area of "green transportation" with its 2008 hay-powered Ranchero IV. The company admits that consumers used to traditional automotive transportation will have to make some adjustments in storage, upkeep, and convenience. And they also acknowledge that the time to get where you're going may be just a bit extended." (Vital Signs Ministries)

"Ontario goes solar" - "The Ontario government has given approval for a California company to construct a massive solar "farm" near Sarnia that will blanket an area larger than all three Toronto islands with hundreds of thousands of sun-soaking panels." (Toronto Star)

"Oil sands hit by climate change politics" - "Alberta's oil producers are finding themselves squarely in the cross-hairs of the government's new climate change regulations, which aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent by 2020, even as industry plans to triple oil sands production." (Globe and Mail)

"Dutch Consider Tough Biofuels Criteria" - "It's the new climate change dilemma: finding alternatives for oil and gas without doing more harm than good." (AP)

April 26, 2007

"Time for a check up at the Global Fund" - "The Global Fund’s inefficient procurement mechanisms and its promotion of inappropriate drugs are hindering the fight against malaria. Today, the Fund’s annual board meeting takes place in Geneva, coinciding with Africa Malaria Day. The board should use this opportunity to take stock of their shortcomings and propose sensible reforms for the future." (Roger Bate and Kathryn Boateng, CFD)

"Malaria Awareness Day, Many Still Unaware of DDT Benefits" - "April 25 is Malaria Awareness Day and a good time to look back at some of ACSH's oft-repeated warnings (see below) that malaria is one of the world's biggest killers. Unfortunately, the environmental movement must also take its place as one of the world's biggest killers, since it has long supported the ban on DDT, the insecticide that can most efficiently and cost-effectively kill malaria-carrying mosquitoes." (Todd Seavey, ACSH)

"Local News Misspells Health Scare, Revisits Scopes" - "From Nashville to Portland, those apocalyptic chemicals are darn hard to spell! But – good news - “people and rats are two very different creatures!” (Trevor Butterworth, STATS)

"Unintended consequences" - "In the past year, concern for the environment has risen to the top of the public's agenda. Now the environmental movement must face a monster of its own making. The very success of environmentalism threatens to undo two of mankind's most significant environmental victories. The first is the near stabilization of humanity's agricultural footprint, expansion of which is the single largest threat to biodiversity worldwide. The second is the spectacular reduction in chronic hunger and malnutrition without which the pressure to convert land for agricultural use would have been stronger." (Indur M. Goklany, IHT)

Buy this book through this link and help JunkScience.com at the same time!

"Seeing only fat" - "No doubt, you’ve heard the news claiming a study has found “Fat workers cost employers more,” that “Fat staff eat into profits,” and that “Obese employees weigh heavily on bottom line.” These headlines have made their way around the world with lightning speed.

Yet it is unimaginable that they are talking about the same study I read, because its findings actually support dramatically different conclusions." (Junkfood Science)

"Scientists Predict Next Solar Cycle Peak" - "The peak of the next sunspot cycle will come in late 2011 or early 2012 - potentially affecting airline flights, communications satellites and electrical transmissions. But forecasters can't agree on how intense it will be." (AP)

"The New Math on Global Warming" - "The UN climate change panel told us in 2001 that human-emitted CO2 might drive the planet's average temperature upward by 5.8 degrees C—a bigger average warming than the world has had in the past 100,000 years. The UN's 2007 report scales the possible overheating back a bit, to a maximum of 4.5 degrees—still a very large warming.

But wait! The environmental movement is now conceding that the earth has a natural, moderate climate cycle. Jon Coifman of the Natural Resources Defense Council said recently on the Hannity and Colmes TV show, "The earth has natural temperature and climate cycles. Nobody has disputed that."

We're glad that the NRDC finally accepts the natural warming cycle as fact. Until Coifman's admission, I don't think the words "natural climate cycle" had ever escaped the lips of a climate alarmist." (Dennis T. Avery, Canada Free Press)

Buy this book through this link and help JunkScience.com at the same time!

"Evidence for a physical linkage between galactic cosmic rays and regional climate time series" - "Abstract: The effects of solar variability on regional climate time series were examined using a sequence of physical connections between total solar irradiance (TSI) modulated by galactic cosmic rays (GCRs), and ocean and atmospheric patterns that affect precipitation and streamflow. The solar energy reaching the Earth’s surface and its oceans is thought to be controlled through an interaction between TSI and GCRs, which are theorized to ionize the atmosphere and increase cloud formation and its resultant albedo. High (low) GCR flux may promote cloudiness (clear skies) and higher (lower) albedo at the same time that TSI is lowest (highest) in the solar cycle which in turn creates cooler (warmer) ocean temperature anomalies. These anomalies have been shown to affect atmospheric flow patterns and ultimately affect precipitation over the Midwestern United States. This investigation identified a relation among TSI and geomagnetic index aa (GI-AA), and streamflow in the Mississippi River Basin for the period 1878–2004. The GI-AA was used as a proxy for GCRs. The lag time between the solar signal and streamflow in the Mississippi River at St. Louis, Missouri is approximately 34 years. The current drought (1999–2007) in the Mississippi River Basin appears to be caused by a period of lower solar activity that occurred between 1963 and 1977. There appears to be a solar “fingerprint” that can be detected in climatic time series in other regions of the world, with each series having a unique lag time between the solar signal and the hydroclimatic response. A progression of increasing lag times can be spatially linked to the ocean conveyor belt, which may transport the solar signal over a time span of several decades. The lag times for any one region vary slightly and may be linked to the fluctuations in the velocity of the ocean conveyor belt." (Advances in Space Research)

Buy this book through this link and help JunkScience.com at the same time!

"Another Study Of The Importance Of Land Use/Land Cover Change In Long Term Near-Surface Air Temperature Trends" - "A valuable new paper has been published which further documents the large role of land use/land cover on long term near-surface air temperature trends. The paper is He, J. F., J. Y. Liu, D. F. Zhuang, W. Zhang, and M. L. Liu 2007: Assessing the effect of land use/land cover change on the change of urban heat island intensity Theor. Appl. Climatol. DOI 10.1007/s00704-006-0273-1." (Climate Science)

Boxer's stunt misfires: "EPA Won't Specify Global Warming Plans" - "The head of the Environmental Protection Agency repeatedly refused to say Tuesday how soon he will comply with a Supreme Court ruling and decide whether to regulate carbon dioxide, the leading gas linked to global warming." (Associated Press)

but receives support from the Left Coast's favorite RINO: "California to sue EPA if it fails to act quickly on air standards" - "Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Wednesday said his administration will sue the Environmental Protection Agency if it fails to act more quickly on California's request to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles." (Associated Press)

Cult? "Al Gore trains a global army" - "NASHVILLE — The stocky man with the soft Southern accent rivets the hotel ballroom crowd with his plea: "We are in a time of peril, so please allow me to explain a topic that has overwhelming importance in my life."

Meet, no, not Al Gore, but Gary Dunham, 71, a grandfather from Texas who was the first of 1,000 Americans Gore trained to deliver his Oscar-winning An Inconvenient Truth slide show to schools, Rotary clubs and nursing homes around the nation.

Two weeks ago, the last 150 of this hand-picked crew arrived here — paying their own way for everything but food — to go through a two-day seminar starring Gore but effectively led by Dunham and a few other graduates of the former vice president's global-warming boot camp." (USA TODAY)

"Gore's Latin Diplomacy" - "Last Friday the president of Colombia flew to Miami, where he was supposed to discuss mutual ways to save the environment with Al Gore. Instead, Mr. Gore stiffed President Álvaro Uribe, saying he found accusations of human rights violations against the Colombian "deeply troubling."

The charges against the twice-elected and popular president are false, and Colombia's newspapers are full of fury at what they are calling Mr. Gore's "rude gesture." But the fact that a former Democratic Vice President would so publicly insult the best U.S. ally in South America is, well, at the moment not so astonishing.

Mr. Uribe's chief accuser is Colombian Senator Gustavo Petro, a former member of the pro-Cuban terrorist group M-19. The senator is also a close friend and political ally of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez.

Mr. Uribe has become an ideological target because he has succeeded in reducing the influence of left-wing terrorists in Colombia. The human rights accusations are now getting a revival thanks to Mr. Petro and the hostility of the AFL-CIO for the pending U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement. Both know that discrediting Mr. Uribe's government is their best hope of killing the trade deal. That Mr. Gore would buy all this despite the Colombian president's shared environmental concerns suggests that the former veep's partisan interests trump his concern for Mother Earth.

A defeat for the Colombia FTA would set back economic development in Latin America and represent a major win for Hugo Chávez's anti-American agenda. Remind us again, who is losing the Americas?" (Wall Street Journal)

"Students hear different take on global warming" - "WATERVILLE -- Retired physics professor Howard Hayden does not dispute that global warming is happening. But Hayden is an unabashed contrarian when it comes to assigning blame for the phenomenon. Sports utility vehicle owners are innocent, he told his audience of about 90 people, most of them students, at Colby College on Tuesday afternoon. The culprits, he said, are more likely astronomic and solar events." (Morning Sentinel)

Says it all really... "Move to block emissions 'swindle' DVD" - "Dozens of climate scientists are trying to block the DVD release of a controversial Channel 4 programme that claimed global warming is nothing to do with human greenhouse gas emissions." (The Guardian) | Scientists Demand Changes to Global Warming Skeptic's Film (AP)

... censorship to enforce the 'debate is over' line. If they have such a strong case, or any case at all, for that matter, why would the Keepers of the Grand Truth not simply destroy counter argument with proof of their case?

Particularly cute is "Ward has also complained to Britain's media regulator, which said it was investigating the matter. British broadcast law demands impartiality on matters of major political and industrial controversy -- and penalties can be imposed for misrepresentations of fact." -- where would that leave Al's nonsense?

More attempts to suppress skepticism: "Academics denounce global warming sceptic" - "Pretoria academic Professor Will Alexander has been accused of publishing biased, self-delusional and "scientifically indefensible" viewpoints on global climate change.

The stinging attack on the climate change sceptic follows a recent article he wrote on climate prediction in the Water Research Commission journal The Water Wheel.

Alexander, who is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Civil and Biosystems Engineering at the University of Pretoria, claimed in the article that there were "serious shortcomings in present climate change science" and that solar sunspot cycles - not industrial greenhouse gases - were the most likely cause of periodic climate and rainfall variations." (The Mercury)

"First Successful Demonstration of Carbon Dioxide Air Capture Technology Achieved" - "Global Research Technologies, LLC (GRT), a technology research and development company, and Klaus Lackner from Columbia University have achieved the successful demonstration of a bold new technology to capture carbon from the air. The "air extraction" prototype has successfully demonstrated that indeed carbon dioxide (CO2) can be captured from the atmosphere. This is GRT’s first step toward a commercially viable air capture device." (Earth Institute at Columbia University)

I think plants beat them to the proof of concept...

"Satellites play vital role in understanding the carbon cycle" - "The global carbon cycle plays a vital role in climate change and is of intense importance to policy makers, but significant knowledge gaps remain in our understanding of it. Several scientists at the Envisat Symposium this week have highlighted research projects using ESA satellites to understand better this complex process." (ESA)

"Torching the Forest Fire Myth" - "Since the first time you heard about global warming, you probably learned that among other consequences, wildfires will increase in frequency and area burned in many parts of the world. This prediction is based on the obvious link that increased temperatures will increase evapotranspiration, forests will become drier in the absence of any increase in precipitation, the changes in climate will promote a weakening of the forest ecosystems making them more susceptible to countless stresses, and forests will “burn baby burn.” Back in 1988 when the greenhouse engine was getting into gear (a rather low gear compared to the overdrive gear of today), Yellowstone Park burned as did many other forests in the western states, and the image of forest fires being linked to global warming has lived on ever since. There is not a day that a substantial forest fire is not burning somewhere across the planet, so the popular press will never run out of material on this front." (WCR)

"Global warming, Antarctic ice is focus of multinational workshop" - "TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- As the national repository for geological material from the Southern Ocean, the Antarctic Marine Geology Research Facility at Florida State University houses the premier collection of Antarctic sediment cores -- and a hot new acquisition will offer an international team of scientists meeting there May 1-4 its best look yet at the impact of global warming on oceans worldwide.

The remarkable new core was extracted during the recent Antarctic summer from record-setting drilling depths 4,214 feet below the sea floor beneath Antarctica's Ross Ice Shelf, the Earth's largest floating ice body. Laced with sediment dating from the present day to about 10 million years ago, the core provides a geologic record of the ice shelf's history in unprecedented detail." (Florida State University)

For a purported science release this reads a lot like an advertisement for a budget sci-fi flick. "He notes that signs of fluctuations such as these are critical because the Ross Sea ice is a floating extension of the even bigger West Antarctic Ice Sheet -- an area of the southernmost continent so unstable that scientists foresee its collapse in a world overheated by global warming." Who says the WAIS is "so unstable"? Who foresees its "collapse in a world overheated by global warming"? As far as anyone has been able to determine there has been no recent change in the melt rate of Antarctic ice sheets, something remarkably consistent since the end of the last great glaciation more than 10,000 years ago, save the  Dryas events.

"Brawls loom on climate burdens" - "THE latest report by the world's pre-eminent climate change advisory body will unleash a series of diplomatic rows about the levels of emissions cuts that should be shouldered by individual countries.

The UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, to be released next week, will not recommend greenhouse gas emissions targets, setting the scene for a global round of bruising negotiations on the cuts necessary to tackle global warming.

Under the IPCC's proposed solutions to climate change, cuts could double electricity prices and speed the introduction of nuclear power in Australia. But the report will warn that up to 75per cent of increases in greenhouse gases by 2030 will be driven by economic growth in developing countries, such as India and China, which have not signed the Kyoto Protocol.

The absence of targets in the report will be a setback to Labor's push to set deep emissions reduction targets and will provide ammunition for John Howard's argument that any emissions targets should be set as part of an international framework." (The Australian)

Silly, all this nonsense predicated on overgrown weather prediction models that cannot demonstrate any more prediction accuracy than a table of random numbers.

"'08 hopefuls tout climate-change plans" - "Polls show that most Americans think global warming is a serious problem, and candidates are being pressured on their positions by interest groups." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Unfortunately, the capital being expended in an attempt to buy votes is our future well-being and prosperity and it's a very poor bargain.

"German G8 climate bid meeting U.S. resistance" - "BERLIN - German Chancellor Angela Merkel's bid to forge an international agreement on combating climate change at a G8 summit in June faces resistance from Washington, a German official signaled on Tuesday.

The comments, by top Group of Eight (G8) envoy Bernd Pfaffenbach, suggest Merkel faces a daunting diplomatic task over the coming weeks to convince Washington to back a climate deal she hopes will be the centerpiece of her G8 presidency.

Given at a briefing to a small group of reporters in Berlin, the remarks appeared intended to dampen expectations of a breakthrough at the June 6-8 summit in the Baltic resort of Heiligendamm and to raise pressure on the White House ahead of a Monday meeting between Merkel and President George W. Bush." (Reuters)

"Climate Change on Back Seat at EU-US Summit" - "STRASBOURG, France - Climate change will take a back seat to economic issues at next week's US-European Union summit, the head of the EU executive said." (Reuters)

"EU Parliament's two homes create 20,000 tons of C02" - "The "travelling circus" between the European Parliament's two homes pumps the same amount of C02 into the atmosphere as 4,000 London homes and undermines MEPs' credibility on green issues, according to a report." (London Independent)

Fine, um... what credibility?

"Climate Winners, Losers Must Adapt - German Expert" - "BERLIN - Architects in Germany must start adjusting building design to cope with global warming, while winter sports in the nation may gradually disappear, the German weather service warned on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Harper Tories support motion that contradicts their Kyoto stance" - "OTTAWA - The Conservatives stunned the Commons on Tuesday by supporting an opposition motion to meet the objectives of the Kyoto Protocol, in apparent contradiction of their own frequently stated policies." (Canadian Press)

"Calls for US, China, India to cut CO2" - "Indonesia's environment minister, Rachmat Witoelar, believes big polluter nations such as the United States, China and India should sign on to the next global climate treaty that will replace the Kyoto accord on greenhouse gas emissions." (AP)

"China moves to shrink its carbon footprint" - "Within a year, China is expected to outpace the US in carbon dioxide emissions." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Peter Ford is a little behind the times -- China already announced their economy comes first, last and always.

"The Great Pall of China" - "Explosive growth means China will overtake America this year as world's biggest producer of greenhouse gases." (London Independent)

"The Lego-fication of Heavy Industry" - "President Bush recently reiterated his opposition to mandatory caps on greenhouse gases. He argued that unless rapidly rising economies such as China and India also agree to caps, then any steps the US takes are in vain. "Unless there is an accord with China, China will produce greenhouse gases that will offset anything we do in a brief period of time," Bush has said.

The administration's critics claim the president is using China as a convenient excuse to maintain the status quo. Let's assume Bush's critics are right and that his argument is a rhetorical dodge. And let's assume that when Bush leaves office his successor embraces a significant regulatory assault on production of greenhouse gases (either through a cap-and-trade program or through stiff taxes on carbon). What is likely to happen?" (Nick Schulz, TCS Daily)

D'oh! "Industry caught in carbon ‘smokescreen’" - "Companies and individuals rushing to go green have been spending millions on “carbon credit” projects that yield few if any environmental benefits.

A Financial Times investigation has uncovered widespread failings in the new markets for greenhouse gases, suggesting some organisations are paying for emissions reductions that do not take place.

Others are meanwhile making big profits from carbon trading for very small expenditure and in some cases for clean-ups that they would have made anyway." (Financial Times)

"Will Media Report Global Warming 'Carbon Credit' Fraud?" - "It’s conceivable that years from now, America’s media will be reporting one of the biggest frauds in history: the idea that a wealthy person, for instance, soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore, thought he and others like him could purchase “carbon credits” to offset their lavish lifestyles making them quote “carbon neutral.”

Given the media’s love affair with the former vice president as well as advancing man-made global warming hysteria, few American press members have dared to expose this hoax for what it is." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

FT goes carbon nuts: "CO2 needs a price but taxes are the best way to set it" - "The Kyoto protocol to fight climate change expires in 2012. The shape of a successor treaty is still in doubt, but one aspect seems certain: carbon trading will play a major role. A Financial Times investigation today reveals that carbon markets leave much room for unverifiable manipulation. Taxes are better, partly because they are less vulnerable to such improprieties." (Financial Times)

  • Beware the carbon offsetting companies - Offsetting is a main principle of the Kyoto protocol. It allows developed nations to meet emissions reduction targets by funding projects such as wind farms or solar panels.
  • Reduced operations could bring gains - A US company bought last year by a private equity group stands to make financial gains selling carbon credits that have resulted from reducing its operations.
  • Offsetting business seen as ‘booming’ - Recently, large numbers of small offsetting companies have sprung offering their services to businesses trying to become carbon-neutral.
  • Big variations in price of carbon dioxide - Companies seeking to cancel out their greenhouse gas production face big variations in the price of a tonne of carbon dioxide.
  • A guide to good carbon offsetting - Companies seeking to offset their emissions or to go “carbon-neutral” need to carefully consider their options. The FT has brought together some advice from companies that have taken this step, and carbon market experts.
  • Offsetting profile: Powerguda, India - A look at a small Indian village that has benefited from new government and international programmes to help conserve water and bring life back to the area.
  • In Uganda, money may grow on trees - Candelabra-shaped seedlings sprouting from The New Forests Company’s plantation on a hillside in Uganda may still only be knee-high, but they could soon be making serious money.
  • Carbon trading key terms - A glossary of key words in the expanding carbon trading industry
  • Energy efficient bulbs light up South Africa - The Ladysmith Enviro Club set up a project for encouraging electricity savings by promoting the replacement of standard incandescent light bulbs.

"A global warming script written by Big Oil?" - "WASHINGTON - The recent explosion of celebrities offering the rest of us utterly nonsensical direction on how we should change our behavior in the global warming age can only have one explanation: “An Inconvenient Truth” producer Laurie David, recording artist Sheryl Crow and third-generation scion Robert Kennedy are secretly on Big Oil’s payroll.

How else to make sense, for example, of the two women’s view that toilet paper should be rationed to one square per trip to the potty." (The Examiner)

You could wish 'Big Oil' were both so organized and cunning, although the truth is and always has been that 'Big Oil' could care less about the 'global warming' scare as long as they can pass increased costs off on consumers (they'll actually make more money with the same percentage markup on a more expensive commodity, which is why the various oil majors are simply jockeying for the most advantageous legislation for themselves and to the detriment of their competitors).

Now this is a great racket! "Russian Energy Giant to Bundle Carbon Credits With Gas Sales" - "MOSCOW, April 24 — Gazprom, the Russian energy giant, has made handsome profits selling natural gas to Europe.

Now the company is positioning itself to make even more money, this time from the effluents from all that gas it sells to Europe. Gazprom announced Tuesday that it is selling carbon dioxide emissions credits that companies in the European Union need in order to burn Gazprom’s fuel.

The company is already testing the market for an innovative combination sale of fuel-and-emissions credits in countries that have undertaken to limit the release of gases that scientists say are warming the earth.

In 2005, the European Union, the major market for Gazprom, introduced a cap-and-trade scheme that allows polluters to buy credits that allow them to pollute and nonpolluters to sell pollution credits that they won’t use. That system is now being closely watched as Congress considers a similar mechanism in the United States." (New York Times)

Stoke Western European fantasies and self-loathing for being developed countries, talk them out of using abundant and cheap energy from coal, sell them your own abundant hydrocarbons and indulgences to assuage their guilt over using them! And the EU is stupid enough to buy this snake oil?

"Smog cleanup 'a bad use of money'" - "The Ontario government has firmly rejected the idea of spending up to $1.6 billion on pollution-control technologies to clean up the province's coal plants, arguing the expensive measures would do nothing to combat climate change and would take too long to implement." (Toronto Star)

Interesting, the caption on an accompanying file picture reads: "Technology could cut sulphur-dioxide emissions 34 per cent at generating stations such as Nanticoke, a new report says." If they were really concerned about enhanced greenhouse ("global warming") then cutting sulfur emissions is allegedly counterproductive (sulfur particulates are the modelers' favorite excuse for the atmosphere failing to behave as modeled).

"Canada to Ban Incandescent Light Bulbs by 2012" - "OTTAWA - Canada will ban the sale of inefficient incandescent light bulbs by 2012 as part of a plan to cut down on emissions of greenhouse gases, Natural Resources Minister Gary Lunn said Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Most Britons believe that airlines are failing to clear the air" - "Virgin may lead the way, but a survey indicates that aviation scores poorly for its approach to the environment." (London Times)

Most Britons believe they're going to win the lottery too, so what?

"GE Aviation joins biofuel project" - "General Electric Aviation will team with aircraft maker Boeing and an arm of British-based Virgin Atlantic Airways to develop and test a new biofuel to power jet engines.

The environmental initiative comes as governments, particularly those in the European Union, are moving toward curbing the emission of greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming.

The aviation industry accounts for 1.6 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, the European Environmental Agency says. That is expected to increase by 3 percent annually through 2015. Boeing, Virgin Fuels and GE Aviation will test the fuel on a Virgin Atlantic B-747 in 2008." (The Enquirer)

"Alternative Coal Has Role in Global Carbon Cut" - "ST. LOUIS - Transforming coal into transport fuels and natural gas can play a big role in cutting greenhouse gas emissions in the United States and eventually in rapidly developing countries like China, the chief executive officer of Arch Coal Inc. said in an interview." (Reuters)

"No 'Biofuel Bubble' in France Says Diester Industrie" - "PARIS - The French biodiesel sector is unlikely to confront a crisis of the kind facing the industry in Germany as output never sharply exceeded steadily rising demand, France's top producer, Diester Industrie, said on Wednesday.

German biodiesel sales have plunged 40 to 50 percent since the start of the year after the government began taxing the "green fuel" saying it could not afford to lose the large tax revenue from fossil diesel.

The move sparked an outcry at a time when the European Union wants to increase biofuel use to stop global warming." (Reuters)

"Corn price spike to hike costs of food" - "NEW YORK Recent surges in U.S. corn futures are expected to directly hit American and Japanese consumers with higher prices for steak, pizza, ice cream and tofu, according to Japanese and U.S. grain traders." (Kyodo)

"Brazil to Split Up its Environmental Agency" - "BRASILIA - Brazil will break up its environmental protection agency, the government said on Wednesday, in a move that should speed up the licensing of projects such as gas pipelines and dams in sensitive areas like the Amazon rain forest." (Reuters)

"Robins forced to sing at night to beat traffic noise" - "Urban birds have taken to singing at night because it is too noisy for their melodies to be heard during the daytime, researchers claim today.

A study of robins in and around Sheffield found that birds nesting in areas that are noisy by day were more likely to sing at night than birds in quieter neighbourhoods. The researchers believe the birds have adapted the times at which they sing to be heard above the din of the city.

The report adds to growing evidence that birds are altering their behaviour to cope with modern life." (The Guardian)

Critters adapt? Imagine that...

"National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine report calls for more dairy foods at school" - "Rosemont, Ill. – April 25, 2007 – Today, the National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine released a report recommending nutrition standards be established for "competitive" foods in the school environment, such as a la carte cafeteria items, vending machines and school stores. The National Dairy Council (NDC) applauds the overall recommendations outlined in the report, which promote the consumption of nonfat and low-fat dairy products, fruits, vegetables and whole grains and limits the amount of saturated fat, salt, added sugars, and total calories. The report includes a specific recommendation for schools to increase the availability of low-fat and nonfat white and flavored milk and yogurt, with modest amounts of added sugars, for all grade levels, throughout the day." (National Dairy Council)

"The Angel Is in the Details" - "Twenty years ago, then-FDA Commissioner Frank Young and I began a Wall Street Journal op-ed thus: "Defining the terms 'biotechnology' and 'genetic engineering' isn't an easy task, since the terms don't represent natural groupings of processes or products. They connote something different to individual commentators, journalists, organizations, congressional staffers and members of the public. The terms are ambiguous, the source of much confusion and little advantage, and we would do well to return to more specific and descriptive terms." (Dr. Henry I. Miller, TCS Daily)

"US Exporters Fear GMO Corn Seed Will Hurt Sales" - "CHICAGO - US farmers are planting a genetically modified corn seed that has not yet been approved overseas, and exporters said on Tuesday they were concerned that any accidental commingling with regular supplies could hurt corn exports that were worth US$4.8 billion last year." (Reuters)

April 25, 2007

"Malaria 'still kills scores on the continent'" - "SOUTH Africa will join the rest of the continent today in observing Africa Malaria Day, to draw world attention to a disease that kills nearly 800 000 Africans every year.

According to the World Health Organisation, nearly 3 000 children die every day around the world because of malaria, along with 10 000 pregnant African women every year.

But this year, South Africa's continued use of the notorious pesticide DDT as a weapon against malaria is under renewed scrutiny after alarming medical research that suggests that hundreds of young South African men have low sperm counts and are less fertile because of DDT spraying campaigns." (The Mercury)

DDT Backlash Begins

"Red tape slows initiatives against disease" - "MALARIA kills more African children than any other disease. Today marks Africa Malaria Day — to raise public awareness of malaria, commemorate lives lost and gauge progress against the disease. Many African countries are developing indoor residual spraying programmes, some with DDT, a highly effective and safe insecticide. Insecticide-treated mosquito net distribution, however, continues to dominate efforts. Our analysis shows that slow approvals for new net technologies have limited competition and wasted public funds for malaria control. Qualified cost-effective alternatives exist and competition should be encouraged." (Richard Tren and Philip Coticelli, Business Day)

"Baby Boomer blues" - “Could Baby Boomers Be Approaching Retirement in Worse Shape Than Their Predecessors?” Last month, the National Institutes of Health issued a press release posing this question. The answer was supposedly found in a survey it was promoting that had been published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, a private, nonprofit, economic research organization." (Junkfood Science)

"Healthy aging teachings" - "An absolutely priceless look at the meaning of a healthy lifestyle. Judy Gerstel’s piece in the Toronto Star is well worth reading for a wholesome perspective. A sense of humor is required, but I hear laughter is very good for us." (Junkfood Science)

"Study: Breast-Feeding Won't Deter Obesity" - "While breast-feeding has many benefits, it won't prevent a child from becoming fat as an adult, says a new study that challenges dogma from U.S. health officials. The research is the largest study to date on breast-feeding and its effect on adult obesity." (AP)

"Another one bites the dust" - "Live, Eat and Play (LEAP) is the acronym for a randomized clinical trial of primary care interventions for childhood obesity conducted in 29 medical clinics across Melbourne, Australia. It was an intense 3-month program to teach healthy lifestyle changes for overweight children, ages 5 to 10, and their families, with 12 months of followup." (Junkfood Science)

"TV food adverts increase obese children's appetite by 134 percent" - "LIVERPOOL, UK – 23 April 2007 -- Obese and overweight children increase their food intake by more than 100% after watching food advertisements on television; a study by the University of Liverpool psychologists has shown." (University of Liverpool)

Uh-huh... did advertising similarly increase these subject's desire to be say, a fire truck, an astronaut or a planeteer? In short, are these subjects obese because they lack all self-control and are excessively influenced by advertising?

"Evidence — there isn’t any" - "A systematic review of the clinical evidence on preventive programs for childhood obesity was just released by researchers from Britain. Their findings concurred with a recent post, “Critical thinking has left the building,” which delved into the evidence being used to support the UK’s new Healthy Living Initiative to address childhood obesity. They found no justification for such initiatives. No evidence exists." (Junkfood Science)

Right... "Study shows food preparation may play a bigger role in chronic disease than was previously thought" - "How your food is cooked may be as important to your health as the food itself. Researchers now know more about a new class of toxins that might soon become as important a risk factor for heart disease and metabolic disorders as trans fats.

This class of toxins, called advanced glycation end products (AGEs), are absorbed into the body through the consumption of grilled, fried, or broiled animal products, such as meats and cheeses. AGEs, which are also produced when food products are sterilized and pasteurized, have been linked to inflammation, insulin resistance, diabetes, vascular and kidney disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.

A new study at Mount Sinai School of Medicine reveals that AGE levels are elevated in the blood of healthy people, and even more so in older individuals than in younger people. Of particular interest was the finding that a major determinant of the blood levels of AGEs is the amount of AGEs in the diet, not dietary calories, sugar, or fat. The study, which was done in collaboration with, and supported by, the National Institute on Aging (NIA), is published in the April issue of the Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences." (The Mount Sinai Hospital / Mount Sinai School of Medicine)

... they're talking about some of the compounds that make your food taste good, even smell good.

They're back: "New car smell is bad for you" - "That "new car smell" can be hazardous to your health, The Ecology Center, a Berkeley, Calif., environmental group said." (UPI)

"STENCH!" - "For the first time since the Great Stench of London in 1858, the steady improvement in Britain ’s hygiene has gone into reverse. There are so many reasons why this further disaster is a typical product of modern British politics:" (Number Watch)

"How About Economic Progress Day?" - "Last Sunday was marked by an orgy of celebrations of Earth Day, the worldwide annual event intended to "to spark a revolution against environmental abuse."

Even the Bush administration had an Earth Day website, which stated, "Earth Day and every day is a time to act to protect our planet".

Watching the media coverage, you'd think that the earth was in imminent danger -- that human life itself was on the verge of extinction. Technology is fingered as the perp.

Nothing could be further from the truth." (John Stossel, Townhall)

"Relax, the planet is fine" - "Money is partly to blame for the global warming hysteria, Professor Richard Lindzen says" (Linda Frum, National Post)

"Satellites offer sunny outlook on understanding polar climate, with help of cloudy skies" - "Far beyond signaling the day’s weather, clouds play a key role in regulating and understanding climate. A team of researchers recently completed a project to confirm what NASA satellites are telling us about how changes in clouds can affect climate in the coldest regions on Earth.

Clouds and their traits – their temperature, depth, size and shape of their droplets – play a significant role in how much of the sun's radiation reaches Earth's surface and what amount of heat energy Earth reflects back into the atmosphere. In 2006, NASA simultaneously launched a pair of satellites, CloudSat and the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation (CALIPSO), which together use state-of-the-art instruments as they orbit the globe to reveal detailed information about clouds and their effect on climate." (NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center)

"Sheryl Crow: I Was Joking!" - "Is it just me or does it seem that liberal political figures seem to have a propensity to say "it was just a joke" whenever a particularly idiotic idea of theirs meets with appropriate ridicule?" (Matthew Sheffield, News Busters)

"The March Of The New Luddites" - "Environmentalism: So global-warming alarmists now want to limit our use of toilet paper. What's next, one-room shacks with bamboo fences? Don't laugh. That's also on their list of recommendations." (IBD)

"China Seems Poised to Pass U.S. As Top Greenhouse-Gas Emitter" - "BEIJING -- China is set to surpass the U.S. as the world's top emitter of greenhouse gases this year -- much earlier than forecast -- because of its rapid economic growth, according to the International Energy Agency.

Moreover, Beijing's refusal to put limits on China's greenhouse-gas emissions will allow them to increase nearly unchecked and erase gains made elsewhere in the world, the IEA's chief economist, Fatih Birol, said in an interview. That could seriously weaken efforts to design a global greenhouse-gas treaty to replace the Kyoto Protocol.

The IEA, which advises developed countries on energy policy, previously had predicted China's emissions of greenhouse gases would surpass those of the U.S. by 2010. Greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide are released by burning fossil fuels and are believed by most climate scientists to cause or at least contribute to global warming.

But the IEA revised its forecast on China because of the country's surging economy, Mr. Birol said. "In the past couple of months, economic growth and related coal consumption has grown at such an unexpected rate," he said.

China's economy has expanded more than 10% a year for four straight years. Last week, the government announced that gross domestic product expanded 11.1% in the first quarter from a year earlier, raising fears of excess in the economy.

Mr. Birol said China's increasing carbon-dioxide emissions, which stem from its near-total reliance on domestic coal to power its economy, are expected to dwarf reductions in emissions from Europe, the U.S. and Japan.

Unchecked, over the next 25 years, the growth of China's greenhouse-gas emissions is forecast to double that of all the members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which includes, Europe, the U.S., Canada, South Korea and Japan." (Wall Street Journal)

"China delays climate change plan indefinitely" - "China has delayed indefinitely its national “action plan” on climate change, which was due to be released on Monday after exhaustive consultations among ministries in Beijing and provincial and local governments." (Financial Times)

"Inhofe dares Hollywood to take warming pledge"  -"A leading skeptic of global-warming science is challenging celebrity activists such as Al Gore and Sheryl Crow to lower their "carbon footprint" to the same level as the average American by Earth Day in April 2008." (Eric Pfeiffer, Washington Times)

SENATOR INHOFE OPENING STATEMENT Hearing on the Supreme Court’s Decision in Massachusetts V. EPA Tuesday, April 24, 2007

"The IPCC goes looking for bad news" - "An Australian academic who worked on the latest IPCC report says it overstates scary weather scenarios and understates man’s ability to adapt." (Rob Lyons, sp!ked)

Checks and Balances in Climate Assessment - A Guest Weblog By Hendrik Tennekes (Climate Science)

"Flannery may give up honour" - "TIM Flannery has suggested he might resign as Australian of the Year if John Howard continues to pursue a policy on climate change that he regards as untenable." (The Australian)

And someone other than Tim Flannery gives a rat's?

"We reject Kyoto because it’s against our interests" - "Energy and Natural Resources Minister Hilmi Güler has announced that Turkey has declined to sign the Kyoto Protocol for the sake of the country's national interests, in particular because certain parts of the protocol would hinder Turkey's infrastructure development." (Today's Zaman)

"Ohio CO2 sequestration test well completed" - "The U.S. Department of Energy said an 8,000-foot-deep well has been completed in Ohio in preparation for a geological sequestration field test." (UPI)

"In warming world, time to reconsider the clothesline" - "In an age of global warming, this low-tech device may be poised to stage a modest comeback." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Dead wrong... "Signs of Arctic 'hippo' seen down mine" - "Fossils of a hippopotamus-like creature on an Arctic island show the climate was once balmy, giving clues to risks from modern global warming, a scientist says." (Reuters)

... when the world was considerably warmer the tropics were not -- the tropical zone was larger and the temperate zone extended to the poles, thus yielding significant increase in mean global temperature but the tropics flourished, contrary to the absurd claims made in the above-linked peice.

From CO2 Science this week:

The Impact of Predicted Future Warming on Perennial Crop Yields in California, USA: The calculated negative impact will likely be totally overpowered by the positive impact of the concomitant increase in the air's CO 2 concentration.

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from the Northeastern Arabian Sea. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Precipitation (Variability - North America): Has North America experienced more extreme wet and dry periods in response to the warming of the past hundred or more years?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO 2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Salt Marsh Sedge, Saltmeadow Cordgrass, Six Hardwood Tree Species, and Soybean.

Journal Reviews:
Global Cloud Cover Over Land: 1971-1996: How has it changed? And what do the changes suggest about earth's climate?

Urban CO 2 Concentrations and Fluxes in Suburbs of Melbourne, Australia: How do they compare with what has been observed in other major cities of the world?

CO 2 Effects on Cork Oak Seedlings Exposed to High Light and Water Stress: Do elevated atmospheric CO 2 concentrations help any?

Deaths Due to Heat: The Shanghai Experience: Must mortality rates necessarily rise in response to rising temperatures?

Atmospheric CO 2 Enrichment of Tree Seedlings in Deep and Moderate Shade: Under which condition is it more effective? And why do we care?

Dixon, IL Temperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Dixon, IL. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Dixon's mean annual temperature has cooled by 2.01 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (co2science)

"Danish energy consumption and emissions increased in 2006, report finds" - "The Danish Energy Authority has released the region's preliminary energy statistics for 2006, which show that actual Danish energy consumption increased by 6.2% in 2006 over 2005, to reach 881PJ. Nevertheless, Denmark produced 45% more energy than it consumed in 2006, the only EU country to do so.

According to the authority, the increase in energy consumption was primarily because the net imports of electricity for 2005 were replaced by significant net electricity exports in 2006. The body added that increasing electricity exports have led to a large rise in fuel consumption by Danish power plants, and this has also increased CO2 emissions." (Energy Business Review)

"Meeting the ethanol challenge: Scientists use supercomputer to target cellulose bottleneck" - "Termites and fungi already know how to digest cellulose, but the human process of producing ethanol from cellulose remains slow and expensive. The central bottleneck is the sluggish rate at which the cellulose enzyme complex breaks down tightly bound cellulose into sugars, which are then fermented into ethanol." (University of California - San Diego)

Elitists and the Prince of Wails: "For U.S. Food Elite, an Unlikely (Crowned) Hero" - "WHEN Prince Charles gazes from the upstairs windows at Highgrove, his home near this tiny town in the English countryside, he can see a tree planted by the Dalai Lama. It grows near a field of rare British wildflowers, which fade into a row of box hedges trimmed to frame four small busts of the prince’s head. Tigga, his late, beloved Jack Russell terrier, is immortalized in a relief sculpture on a nearby garden wall, behind which a longtime gardener prepares the ground for the prince’s favorite vegetables, potatoes and Brussels sprouts.

Prince Charles, whose hobbies have included both polo and the peculiarly English rural craft called hedge laying, cherishes tradition. In his world, it seems, not much good can come of change. He has waged war against modernity, both in faceless urban architecture and in the erosion of the rural British way of life.

At home, the royal perspective has been criticized as conservative, stodgy and elitist. But to some of the generals of the American food revolution, the prince qualifies as downright progressive.

Alice Waters, who drove the organic movement in the United States, is smitten. “He is, in private, really one of the most forward-thinking, radical humanitarians I have ever talked to,” she said." (New York Times)

Well, no one accused them of being very bright... "GM protesters vainly toil in soil" - "Environmental activists have apologised to a farmer after planting thousands of organic potatoes in a field which they had mistaken for a crop trial site. Activists calling themselves mutatoes.org descended on a field in East Yorkshire to scupper a GM trial. But after back-breaking work digging up the rock-hard ground the group now admit they made a mistake." (BBC)

April 24, 2007

New podcast news! Global Warming News - Regular 3-minute podcast briefings on the 'global warming' news they don't want you to hear. Your host: Professor Philip Stott. Who am I? I am Emeritus Professor of Biogeography in the University of London. For some 30 years, I have studied the way environmental ideas are constructed and promoted, especially those relating to ‘global warming’ and climate change. My podcast aims to bring you “inconvenient news” about ‘global warming’ that is not always covered in the world’s mainstream print and broadcast media. Click here to go directly to Global Warming Podcast News 1, April 23, 2007. (Professor Philip Stott)

"Climate change: Why we don't believe it" - "Global warming is a threat that is going to wipe out civilisation as we know it. The liberal elite and political classes are signed up to the message that, unless we take urgent action within ten years, we are all literally doomed to burn up.

But who else believes them?

Beyond the corridors of Westminster and the offices of environmental pressure groups, where global warming and sustainability are buzzwords of the moment, British consumers continue flying, driving and buying with unchecked enthusiasm. The gulf between the pronouncements of our politicians and what the majority of people think and do, could scarcely be wider." (New Statesman)

"U.S. Adults Less Likely Than Europeans to Think Humans Are Contributing to the Increase in Global Temperatures" - "Germans, British, and Americans least likely to think global warming will present a threat in their lifetime" (PRNewswire-USNewswire)

May Geology media highlights:
Impacts of the North Atlantic gyre circulation on Holocene climate off northwest Africa
Jung-Hyun Kim et al., Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ), Department of Marine Biogeochemistry and Toxicology, Den Burg, Texel 1790, Netherlands. Pages 387-390.

To properly assess anthropogenic impacts on the post-industrial climate, it is essential to identify coherent natural climate variations in a long-term perspective, and their underlying mechanisms. Kim et al. present well-dated Holocene high-resolution records of sea-surface temperature and upwelling intensity off northwest Africa. On millennial time scales, sea-surface temperatures varied with the North Atlantic subtropical gyre circulation, while the upwelling intensity was linked to the Artic–North Atlantic Oscillation–like atmospheric circulation. This suggests that, as a mediator of solar forcing, the oceanic circulation linked to the North Atlantic thermohaline circulation had a stronger impact on Holocene millennial climate cycles than was previously considered.

1400 yr multiproxy record of climate variability from the northern Gulf of Mexico
J.N. Richey et al., University of South Florida, College of Marine Science, St. Petersburg, FL 33701, USA. Pages 423-426.

A continuous record of climate variability over the past 1400 years in the northern Gulf of Mexico was constructed from a sediment core recovered in the Pigmy Basin. Analysis of magnesium/calcium (Mg/Ca) and oxygen isotopes in the surface-dwelling foraminifer Globigerinoides ruber indicates large changes in sea-surface temperature (SST) and salinity over the past millennium. Two intervals of sustained high Mg/Ca indicate Gulf of Mexico SSTs were as warm, or warmer than, near-modern conditions between 1000 and 1400 years before present (yr B.P.). Foraminiferal Mg/Ca during the coolest interval of the Little Ice Age (ca. 250 yr B.P.) indicates that SST was 2–2.5 ºC below modern SST. Four minima in the Mg/Ca record between 900 and 250 yr B.P. correspond with the Maunder, Spörer, Wolf, and Oort sunspot minima, suggesting a link between changes in solar insolation and SST variability in the Gulf of Mexico. (Geological Society of America)

New climate paper made available: Note for Colleagues: (.pdf) The accompanying paper, Climate Change is Nothing New, is being published in the March 2007 issue of the journal, New Concepts in Global Tectonics.

I was invited to prepare the paper by the Editor as a scientific response to the IPCC report, Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis, Summary for Policy Makers, issued by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, February 2007. The paper can also be regarded as a response to the movie by Al Gore, and to the report on carbon trading by the London financier, Sir Nicholas Stern.

The key points of the paper are:" (Emeritus Professor Lance Endersbee)

"Mosquito genes explain response to climate change" - "University of Oregon researchers studying mosquitoes have produced the first chromosomal map that shows regions of chromosomes that activate – and are apparently evolving – in animals in response to climate change." (University of Oregon)

"Melting Himalayan Glaciers a Dire Threat - Experts" - "BEIJING - Global warming could wipe out large areas of glaciers in the Himalayas and surrounding high-altitude regions, threatening dire consequences for China and South Asia, climate scientists said in Beijing on Monday." (Reuters)

"China's First Climate Change Steps Too Small" - "LONDON/BEIJING - Beijing has for the first time disclosed internal targets to fight global warming but these, even if officially adopted, are as unambitious as a similar US goal, analysts say. They would do little to help talks to extend the Kyoto Protocol on global warming and would not keep emissions below levels Europeans say are needed to avert dangerous warming." (Reuters)

Europeans say? Why should anyone care?

"Climate change 'may curb' China's growth" - "Climate change could seriously hinder China's development, hitting agricultural regions with increased droughts and coastal areas with worsening floods, a government report on global warming says.

But the National Climate Change Assessment Report, issued over the weekend, also reiterated that China - expected to soon become the world's largest greenhouse gas emitter - should focus on development before cutting those emissions." (AP)

"China: Growth before 'green'" - "GLOBAL warming could devastate China's development, but that should not stand in the way of economic progress, according to the country's first official survey of climate change." (The Scotsman)

"Bloomberg Green Plan Needs 'Enormous' Study-NY Gov" - "ALBANY, New York - New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer said on Monday Mayor Michael Bloomberg's new green plan, which includes US$50 billion of spending on mass transit to help carry the city into 2030, requires "enormous analysis." (Reuters)

"Green issues the place to be" - "The answer to the old riddle "What's black and white and read all over?" is a newspaper. The new riddle is "What's black and white and green all over?" Now it's a magazine.

On newsstands today, you can find enough "green issues" to satisfy even the most eco-illogical. There are special editions or cover stories from Vanity Fair, Fortune, the Atlantic and Glamour. Others like Time, Newsweek, Motto, Cookie, Outside and Domino already chimed in -- attacking business, urging new regulations and generally adding "-ist" to the concept of social responsibility. Sports Illustrated even gives us the business of sports in a warming world." (Dan Gainor, Washington Times)

"Japan PM to Broach Post-Kyoto Cooperation With Bush" - "TOKYO - Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hopes to find ways in which the United States can cooperate on a post-Kyoto Protocol framework when he meets US President George W. Bush later this week, the Japanese leader said on Monday." (Reuters)

"EU, US at Loggerheads Over Climate Change, Energy" - "LUXEMBOURG - The European Union and the United States are at loggerheads over climate change and energy policy, a week before a summit that will be a test of transatlantic relations." (Reuters)

"Canada: Kyoto protocol targets won’t be part of Tories’ clean air legislation" - "MONTREAL -- Canadian business will soon get a new overseas option to fight global warming, but Canada’s Kyoto protocol targets and other major changes forced into the minority Conservative government’s clean air legislation by the opposition parties won’t be included in upcoming federal targets and regulations to reduce air pollution and greenhouse gases, Environment Minister John Baird said Monday." (CanWest News Service)

Gosh elections are hazardous at times: "Australia: Greenhouse gas target crucial: PM" - "COMMITTING to a greenhouse gas reduction target will be the most important economic decision Australia will make in the next decade and the Labor Party cannot be trusted to make it, John Howard says.

In a keynote speech designed to badge the Coalition as the party with fresh ideas and a vision for future prosperity, the Prime Minister all but confirmed yesterday that he would commit to a long-term target after his emissions taskforce reports at the end of next month.

"It will affect every industry and every household. It will change the whole cost structure of our economy," he said of a reduced target." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"Australia: The climate is important, but so are our jobs and growth" - "Prime Minister John Howard, in Brisbane yesterday, on the imperative of setting realistic emissions targets." (The Australian)

Boy, I really hate... "Climate Change Adds Twist to Debate Over Dams" - "KLAMATH FALLS, Ore., April 19 — The power company that owns four hydroelectric dams on the Klamath River says the dams provide a crucial source of so-called clean energy at a time when carbon emissions have become one of the world’s foremost environmental concerns." (New York Times)

... pretend problems being used to justify infrastructure that is self-evidently useful to society. For one thing it loses sight of the fact the infrastructure exists for its original purpose -- the only necessary and sufficient justification for its existence -- and equally importantly because it gives implied support to a complete nonsense. There is nothing really exciting about a guesstimated increase in global mean temperature which remains within the error margin of our ability to estimate the global mean temperature. Moreover, there is no known optimal global mean to aim for even if we could control it (never mind how absurd that notion may be).

Our best efforts at measuring surface and atmospheric temperature show the world is not behaving in accord with enhanced greenhouse theory -- the troposphere should be warming at a rate roughly 1.3 times that of the surface but we know that not to be true. Additionally we know that anthropogenic particulates are not 'hiding' enhanced greenhouse warming (contrary to popular excuse of the modeling fraternity) because the southern hemisphere, where negligible anthropogenic sulfate emissions exist but where carbon dioxide levels accurately track those of the northern hemisphere and where temperature change should therefore be immediately apparent, shows negligible warming (in fact the mid troposphere trend, where warming should be greatest, is indistinguishable from 0 °C/century while the north, where anthropogenic sulfate particulates are relatively prolific indicates a possible 1 °C/century warming).

"Joe Kernen outshines Laurie David and Sheryl Crow" - "Flash has pointed out this interesting TV confrontation: a CNBC video clip is available on the website under Sheryl's picture below. Or try YouTube including Patrick Michaels' reaction." (The Reference Frame)

Take Back the Weather? "Warning signs: One woman's crusade to bring global warming home to Detroit" - "Margaret Hetherman got tired of explaining to 4-year-old Lilly that there just wasn't enough snow this winter to go sledding and decided to start a billboard campaign against global warming." (Detroit News)


"One square just isn't enough" - "There are lots of celebrities who have taken up the global warming cause, but it looks like Sheryl Crow is pushing her way to the front based on ridiculousness." (Clanton Advertiser)

"Foot soldiers take up the fight to revitalize the planet" - "A few months ago, Taylor Francis went to Nashville. It wasn't for the music.

Taylor, a 15-year-old from Menlo Park, is one of 1,000 "climate change messengers" around the country. Trained in Tennessee by Al Gore, they are taking up where his Oscar-winning documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth," left off, giving slide-show presentations about what global warming is doing to us and how we can fight back." (SF Chronicle)

How are these poor blighters going to react when they discover they're promoting blatant lies, as eventually they must when the apocalypse fails to eventuate?

"Global Warming Burnout" - "To celebrate Earth Day, Friday's globe-hopping edition of ABC's "20/20" was dedicated to "Seven Ways To Help Save the World," which included turning the lights out on the top of the Empire State Building, the Arc de Triomphe, and even in ABC's Times Square studio, where Diane Sawyer could briefly be seen waving a flashlight in the dark. Was this an oblique reference to Auden's famous lines about "Ironic points of light" that "Flash out wherever the Just / Exchange their messages"? Probably not. Anyway, the lights soon came back on because, after all, there was a program to get through.

In fact, there will be a lot of programs to get through now that Mother Earth has become the biggest star on the planet, so to speak. Gaia is a hefty gal, solid as a rock and impossible to wrap your arms around, so one of the useful things about the "20/20" episode (there were lots of maps) was the lightning-quick lesson it provided for we Americans who are a bit vague as to where her various parts are located." (Brendan Bernhard, New York Sun)

Again with the leaked nonsense: "U.N. Panel to Lay Out Steps on Warming" - "After two reports predicting a warmer Earth where life is fundamentally changed, a U.N.-sponsored scientific panel next month will issue a third study describing how a united world can avert the worst, by embracing technologies ranging from nuclear power to manure controls." (AP)

"A Paper On The Complexity of Carbon Sequestration To Mitigate Global Warming" - "A short essay Pielke Sr., R.A., 2001: Carbon sequestration — The need for an integrated climate system approach. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 82, 2021 discussed the complexity of carbon assimilation through deliberate landscape manipulation. A new paper has appeared Bala, Govindasamy, K. Caldeira, M. Wickett, T. J. Phillips, D. B. Lobell, C. Delire, and A. Mirin, 2007. Combined climate and carbon-cycle effects of large-scale deforestation. PNAS published online before print April 9, 2007 which provides a detailed confirmation of the complexity of carbon assimilation through deliberate landscape management." (Climate Science)

Deep ocean cooling? Definitely not AGW-approved: "Deep sea fish growing slower due to global warming" - "Changes in ocean temperature have altered the growth rates of commercially harvested fish over the past century, according to a new study published in this week's early online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Analyzing the ear bones of 555 commercially caught fish to determine age, the researchers, led by Ronald E. Thresher of CSIRO-Australia, report that warmer temperatures in the southwest Pacific Ocean have enabled shallow-water fish to grow faster, perhaps making them more resilient to commercial exploitation. At the same time, deepwater regions have cooled, reducing the growth rates of fish species found at depths greater than 1000 meters (3300 feet), by 30 percent relative to 50 years ago." (Rhett Butler, mongabay.com)

No, the author's name is not an April Fool's tip off, he was actually named for the Margaret Mitchell character.

"Mutual Funds Ignore Climate Change Risks - Ceres" - BOSTON - US mutual funds are ignoring the business risks of global climate change, said a report Monday that criticized the industry for abstaining from or opposing shareholder pressure for environmental disclosure.

None of America's 100 largest mutual funds voted in 2006 in support of resolutions seeking greater corporate disclosure on how global climate change will affect business, said Ceres, a coalition of investors and environmentalists." (Reuters)

Good to see mutual funds refraining from sabotaging business. It's about time Ceres learned to do the same.

Even better: "FreedomWorks Rally at General Electric Shareholder Meeting: Activists gather to question GE's pandering to anti-energy extremists" - "Washington, D.C. - FreedomWorks activists will gather outside the GE shareholders meeting to raise awareness of the critical threat that a cap and trade system poses to the US economy with negligible environmental benefits. GE corporate leadership is embracing the imposition of a cap and trade system on the US economy." (FreedomWorks)

"Biodiesel won't drive down global warming" - "EU legislation to promote the uptake of biodiesel will not make any difference to global warming, and could potentially result in greater emissions of greenhouse gases than from conventional petroleum derived diesel. This is the conclusion of a new study reported today in Chemistry & Industry." (Society of Chemical Industry)

"Green power may ruin pristine land in California" - "Transmission lines from some green power sources would cut through forests and wildlife refuges, worrying environmental groups." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Aluminium Smelters Generate Hot Debate in Iceland" - "REYDARFJORDAR, Iceland - Iceland's biggest and newest aluminium smelter, Alcoa Fjardaal, pumped out its first hot metal at the weekend, riling critics who fear it will damage the environment." (Reuters)

"India to Keep Energy Demand Growth Below GDP Pace" - "TOKYO - India expects its energy demand to remain strong, but increased energy efficiency may keep the pace of consumption growth below economic expansion, a senior Indian government official said on Monday." (Reuters)

"Nuclear power not the solution for China: official" - "Nuclear power is not the long-term answer to China's energy needs due to limited global uranium supplies and problems with nuclear waste disposal, state media on Monday quoted a top official as saying." (AFP)

"AFM Africa Malaria Day Analysis" - "Africa Malaria Day, April 25th, commemorates the 1.2 million people lost each year to a preventable and curable disease. Malaria is the biggest killer of African kids. Half a billion people suffer from it annually, reducing economic productivity around the world. Political will and public funding to target this disease are increasing, but there is still room to improve efforts to measure, assess, and inform evidence-based policies and programs. Africa Fighting Malaria (AFM) provides analysis of:" (Richard Tren, Philip Coticelli, Roger Bate & Kathryn Boateng, Africa Fighting Malaria)

What Moonbat really wants: "The best way to give the poor a real voice is through a world parliament" - "Global governance as it stands is tyranny speaking the language of democracy. We need a directly elected assembly." (George Monbiot, The Guardian)

"Are environmentalists an oppressed minority?" - "In TV, film, newspapers, schools and political circles, the green outlook has become the new orthodoxy. And still greens aren't happy." (Austin Williams, sp!ked)

Marvelous... "Eco-Socialites Make Cleaning Green a Priority" - "THERE is nothing like the specter of a bathtub ring to mobilize even the most pedigreed homemaker. Sloan Barnett was counting on it when she invited some 40 friends to her five-story Georgian town house on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. She meant to introduce them to her family-owned line of eco-friendly household cleansers, and to persuade them to do their part to save the planet." (New York Times)

"Disaster in a bottle" - "With global sales of $100 billion and average yearly growth of 10 per cent, the bottled water industry is one of the great marketing stories of our time. Only oceans of spin could persuade us to pay handsomely for something that we can get from the tap, virtually free. But bottled water comes at a considerable environmental cost, one that puts the lie to labels featuring sparkling glaciers and pristine waterfalls." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"Quality on peer review must be raised with co-operation, says ESF report" - "(STRASBOURG, FRANCE) Scientists are questioning whether peer review, the internationally accepted form of scientific critique, is able to meet the challenges posed by the rapid changes in the research landscape. A report published by the European Science Foundation (ESF) has showcased a number of options that could lead to a greater openness to innovative research." (ESF)

"Can Aspirin Prevent Cancer? Jury's Out" - "The research could give you whiplash: Aspirin prevents cancer, one study says. Oops, maybe not, says another." (AP)

From The Indy, of course: "WiFi could be health risk at schools" - "British health officials want an investigation into possible hazards of wireless communication, which is increasingly being used in British schools." (UPI)

"Asia's cancer rate may jump by almost 60 percent by 2020" - "SINGAPORE: Asia's cancer rate may jump by almost 60 percent to 7.1 million new cases a year by 2020, straining the region's ill-prepared health systems, according to Richard Horton, editor of the British medical journal Lancet. Aging populations, tobacco use and increasing rates of obesity are fueling the incidence of deadly tumors in Asian patients too poor to afford the most advanced treatments, Horton said at an international cancer meeting in Singapore over the weekend." (Associated Press)

Surprised Horton didn't add global warming and genetically modified foods too. Wonder how thrilled The Lancet is to have their name associated with Dick like this.

"Obesity rising in Europe, especially in children" - "BUDAPEST - The number of overweight people in Europe is rising and there is an especially worrying trend of increasing childhood obesity and in the number of people who are grossly obese, according to recent studies.

Europe is facing major health and social burdens and the rise in obesity is reaching "epidemic" proportions, the 15th European Congress on Obesity in Budapest was told on Sunday.

Estimates show there are around 1.1 billion overweight people in the world, of whom 312 million are obese, and that in Europe 10-20 percent of men are obese and almost half the population is overweight." (Reuters)

From the department of trivial results... "Obesity down in sugar-free schools: Swedish study" - "Stockholm schools that banned sweets, buns and soft drinks saw the number of overweight children drop by six percentage points in four years, a Karolinska Institute study published on Monday showed." (AFP)

"Doubt cast on routine screening to pick up overweight and obese schoolchildren" - "Primary schoolchildren should not be routinely screened for obesity and overweight in the absence of effective treatment, finds research in the Archives of Disease in Childhood." (BMJ Specialty Journals)

"Fast food fat content varies widely from country to country: study" - "The fat content in fast food meals sold by the same chain can vary widely in different countries, with Eastern Europe topping the fat-level charts, Danish researchers told an international obesity conference here on Monday." (AFP)

"Study: Fat Workers Cost Employers More" - "Overweight workers cost their bosses more in injury claims than their lean colleagues, suggests a study that found the heaviest employees had twice the rate of workers' compensation claims as their fit co-workers." (AP)

"Brain-altering baby milk may neuter obesity risk" - "SCIENTISTS are working on a baby formula that would chemically restructure children's metabolic system to ensure they do not become obese.

Research on mice has found that large doses of the appetite-controlling hormone leptin during infancy permanently prevent excess weight gain and reduce the chances of type 2 diabetes.

Now British researchers say a leptin-enriched baby milk that does exactly the same is less than 10 years away, raising a plethora of medical, legal and ethical questions." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"Survey says...." - "A press release went out yesterday from Hewitt Associates, a provider of human resources outsourcing and consulting services,” resulting in countless media stories. That in itself isn’t news, of course, but what’s really at work might be." (Junkfood Science)

"Pediatric Grand Rounds" - "Pediatric Grand Rounds' special Year in Review edition has just been posted by Dr. Clark Bartram at Unintelligent Design.

This first annual commemorative features the best pediatric medical bloggers of the year. The incredible collection of articles is evidence that the blog world is the source of some of the best writing on children’s health issues available." (Junkfood Science)

"Earth's First Rainforest Unearthed" - "A spectacular fossilised forest has transformed our understanding of the ecology of the Earth’s first rainforests. It is 300 million years old." (University of Bristol)

"Organics: A Poor Harvest for Wal-Mart" - "Last fall, Peter Ricker got an order from Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) for organic apples that was the biggest he'd ever seen. "I'm talking trailer truckloads," says the 34-year-old, eighth-generation apple farmer in Maine. Ricker had heard of the giant retailer's push into organics, and he thought the order could be the beginning of a surge in demand. But that wasn't the case. While most retailers place orders with Ricker Hill Orchards once a week, Wal-Mart never came back.

He's hardly alone. A number of organic farmers across the country say that Wal-Mart has backed off of aggressive plans to offer more organic foods. After placing large orders for organic apples and juices last year, the retailer is cutting back or stopping orders altogether. Wade Groetsch, president at the Florida juice producer Blue Lake Citrus Products, says he stopped shipping his organic orange-tangerine blend to Wal-Mart after a few months. "The sales there just weren't enough to justify our costs of packing and shipping," he says." (Business Week)

"Great Lakes Fish Virus May Threaten US Aquaculture" - "CHICAGO - A virus in the US Great Lakes that has killed tens of thousands of fish in recent years is spreading and poses a threat to inland fish farming, a US Agriculture Department official said on Monday." (Reuters)

April 23, 2007

"Suffering in Silence: The real legacy of Rachel Carson" - "When the Christian Science Monitor recently declared Al Gore "the Rachel Carson of global warming," the former vice president must have bubbled over with pride. There is, it seems, no higher compliment one can bestow on an environmentalist.

Next month marks what would have been Carson's 100th birthday, and festivities abound. The author of "Silent Spring" -- the 1962 book that birthed modern environmentalism and made "DDT" a dirty word -- Carson is the subject of an exhibit at the National Archives and the star of its Environmental Film Festival this year." (Katherine Mangu-Ward, Reason)

"Junk science can be detrimental to health" - "As I read Angie DeRosa’s story about ITW Hi-Cone being unhappy with the misleading depiction of a six-pack carrier in the movie Happy Feet, (Dec. 11, Page 1), I couldn’t help but think of the city of San Francisco’s ban on polystyrene food-service products in restaurants.

Here we have one geographical area making decisions based entirely on junk science that could affect the entire country. Rather than sound, scientific evidence, decisions are made based upon emotional, anti-plastic rhetoric." (Carl Stevens, Plastics News)

"Consumers Suffering From 'Green Guilt,' Survey Finds" - "In an increasingly green-conscious world, Americans' environmental "footprints" are continually in the spotlight, and a new survey shows that one in five consumers is experiencing "green guilt." (CNSNews.com)

"On Earth Day, Remember The Humans" - "The same noble impulse that helped us clean up is now causing trouble." (Indur M. Goklany, American.com)

Sense at last? Don't hold your breath: "Call to wipe out dingoes over kid attacks" - "DINGOES on Queensland's World Heritage-listed Fraser Island have learned to regard small children as food." (The Australian)

"Guns, Politics and the Law: The Second Amendment may finally get its day in court." - "That the Virginia Tech massacre did not occasion a widespread round of political hand-wringing over gun control is, as one newspaper put it, a silent testimony to how far the gun-control debate has shifted in the past decade and a half.

Yes, the usual suspects have attempted to use the murder spree on campus as evidence of the danger of guns in America. But as unlikely a combination of leaders from Harry Reid to George Bush has been as one in warning we should avoid a "rush to judgment" in the wake of the killings." (Wall Street Journal)

"What the Cold War Taught Us" - "Liberal democracies, not activists and international law, protect human rights." (Eric Posner, Wall Street Journal)

"Property Rights at Risk in New Jersey" - "Eminent domain and “pay-to-play” are a dangerous combination." (Duncan Currie, American.com)

"Post-Kelo America" - "Assessing the progress of eminent domain reform." (Ilya Somin, Reason)

"Aging by the numbers" - "While it has become popular to believe that optimum health means we should forever have the health indices we had at the age of twenty, the evidence increasingly shows that not to be the case. Aging is actually a normal part of life, not a disease. And whether, for example, it’s the natural increases in our body weights, cholesterol levels, blood pressures or blood sugars, one-size-fits-all clinical guidelines are not best for everyone." (Junkfood Science)

"Salt shaking news" - "The media stories in the past day have reached a frightening crescendo, and every corner of the world, all trying to scare us half to death. What makes the headlines so outrageous is not that the results of the study being reported were so foreboding, but that they bare little resemblance to the spin in the news." (Junkfood Science)

"Anger as experts fail to demand ban on building homes near power lines" - "MINISTERS are being urged to consider banning the building of homes and schools near high-voltage power lines because of fears they may be linked to cancer, it emerged yesterday." (The Scotsman)

And the scares roll on (Number Watch)

"Skeptical minds want to know.... " - "The James Randi Educational Foundation has just announced that the entire text of An Encyclopedia of Claims, Frauds, and Hoaxes of the Occult and Supernatural has been made available online. In it, Mr. Randi debunks some of the most popular and entertaining forms quackery." (Junkfood Science)

"Fruity cocktails count as health food, study finds" - "WASHINGTON - A fruity cocktail may not only be fun to drink but may count as health food, U.S. and Thai researchers said on Thursday. Adding ethanol -- the type of alcohol found in rum, vodka, tequila and other spirits -- boosted the antioxidant nutrients in strawberries and blackberries, the researchers found. Any colored fruit might be made even more healthful with the addition of a splash of alcohol, they report in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture." (Reuters)

Under laboratory conditions: "Warming Climate Reverses Sex of Lizards" - "High temperatures can reverse the sex of dragon lizards before they hatch, turning males into females.

The finding, detailed in the April 20 issue of the journal Science, could have implications for the development of life as the planet's climate warms.

The research reveals that extreme temperatures could inactivate a gene on the male sex chromosomes of dragon lizards and thus turn male embryos into females. The sex-reversed lizards look female and have female organs but genetically they are male, said lead author Alexander Quinn of the University of Canberra in Australia." (LiveScience)

But in the real world these critters choose to lay their egg clutches in suitable locations, coping with diurnal temperatures far above the listed range and nocturnal ones far below. Australian lizards, including those studied, have evolved in a land of vicious extreme and survived, suggesting they are unlikely to be troubled by some trivial enhanced greenhouse effect.

Oh boy... "U.S. Government Insurers Ill Prepared for Climate Perils" - "WASHINGTON, DC, April 20, 2007 - The federal government flood and crop insurance programs have failed to address the increased risks likely to result from global warming, finds a new report prepared by the investigative branch of Congress, the Government Accountability Office, GAO." (ENS)

... there are no real costs from virtual world global warming and no known costs from the trivial warming thought to have occurred while humans have been trying to take the planet's temperature. In fact, the estimated global mean temperature of 287.6 K is below the calculated expectation of 288 K and no one knows what should be considered optimal anyway.

"New GAO Report on Climate Change and Insurance" - "At the request of Congressman Joseph Lieberman (ID-CT), the U.S. Government Accountability Office, a research arm of Congress, has just released a report on climate change and insurance. The report is excellent and well worth reading for anyone with interest in the subject. Now whether or not an excellent report makes a positive difference in policy making is another matter ..." (Pielke Jr., R., Prometheus)

"Measuring Precipitation on Willis’ Boots" - "Willis writes in with latest FOI refusal from CRU, saying that they are unable to provide a list of the sites used in HadCRU3.

As y’all may recall, I wrote back regarding the FOI request I had made for Phil Jones’ list of stations used for HadCRUT3. Unlike Steve M., I was not looking for 17 year old data, but current data. Here’s what I received today …" (Climate Audit)

"Tropospheric warming not as fast as the surface" - "A weekly dose of peer-reviewed denier literature on the climate." (The Reference Frame)

Eye-roller of the moment: "Australia's epic drought: The situation is grim" - "Australia has warned that it will have to switch off the water supply to the continent's food bowl unless heavy rains break an epic drought - heralding what could be the first climate change-driven disaster to strike a developed nation." (London Independent)

Yes, the situation is grim and yes, it's one of our own making -- it's an object lesson in the hazards of listening to the lunatic Greens because we failed to develop infrastructure and store water to accommodate our growing population through inevitable drought (Australia has on average one 'good' year in seven, it's a land of none or plenty).

"Václav Klaus: Blue, not Green Planet : What is Endangered: Climate or Freedom?" - "To be released on 5/15/2007 in Czech...

Global warming has recently become both a symbol and a prototype of the tension between the truth and propaganda. One politically correct truth has taken over and it is not easy to oppose it although a significant number of people, including top scientists, see the climate change issues, its reasons, and its impact very differently. They are scared by the arrogance of the advocates of the global warming hypothesis and the related conjecture that connects this warming with particular acts of Man. They are afraid of the consequences that it will have for all of us. The best environment for humans is the environment of freedom. It is the only right criterion to judge all environmentalist visions and all their categoric demands. The current debate about global warming is thus inherently a debate about the freedom." (The Reference Frame)

"Impact of global warming looms on the horizon" - "In the 1970s as a young scientist at the Geophysical Institute I wrote passionate letters complaining that for the first time in the geologic era man was changing the atmosphere of the planet. I argued that continued dumping of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere would be associated with a warming of the entire Earth and pled for attention to this matter. The letters were ignored.

They were ignored because in the 1970’s Newsweek, the Christian Science Monitor, the New York Times and countless books and articles were warning of the dangers of global cooling.

Things have changed. Global warming is now being noted, and I in the meantime have become a little skeptical about some of the claims being put forth. I’m skeptical despite the fact that “everybody knows that the science is in.” The science isn’t even close to being in." (Glenn Shaw, Fairbanks News-Miner)

That'd be right! "Ultimate lunacy: Dell says plant "virtual trees" for Earth Day" - "From the "you've GOT to be freaking kidding me" department:

Dell's Virtual Plant a Tree for Me program into the computer game Second Life has many tech savvy people wondering if this represents a new low in Earth Day marketing tie-ins. It looks like in the rush to pander to green-ness, some Dell executives maybe didn't think beyond the boardroom door.

You may wonder, too, after reading Dell's invitation to its Earth Day Party at Dell Island in the Second Life game where they say proudly "get your own tree sapling to plant in Second Life!".

Yes that's' right, you can plant a virtual tree in a video game for Earth Day." (Watt's Up With That?)

Actually, this is a lot more logical than it might appear at first blush. After all, other than stopping the model runs, of course, what makes more sense than planting a virtual tree to deal with a virtual problem?

The Sun Kings: The Unexpected Tragedy of Richard Carrington and the Tale of How Modern Astronomy Began by Stuart Clark -- "Herein lies the tale of intrepid astronomers, across time and cultures, who were the first to observe, identify, and document our misbehaving Sun. But by the time you are done, you realize that the story's main protagonist--the one with all the personality-is not any one of the scientists, but the Sun itself. A delightful, informative read." -- Neil deGrasse Tyson, astrophysicist, American Museum of Natural History, author of "Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries"

Purchase of this title through this link helps JunkScience.com.

"Canada Cans Kyoto" - "Climate Change: The cracking sound you hear up north isn't the last of winter's ice breaking up, but the mighty "Kyoto consensus" falling apart." (IBD)

"Canada joins anti-Kyoto bloc" - "This week's announcement by the Canadian government -- that it may join a U.S.-led coalition focused on voluntary emissions cuts -- could be part of a global shift away from Kyoto's binding targets.

In a somewhat surprising development, Canada, a long-time supporter of the Kyoto Protocol, announced that it may want to join the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate (AP6), a six-nation coalition focusing on voluntary emission-reduction steps and technology transfers. Many environmentalists oppose AP6 out of a fear that it may undermine political support for the legally binding Kyoto treaty." (Kenneth Green, Financial Post)

Good but unlikely to be supported by generally cowardly politicians: "South Australia: Libs declare climate war" - "In an essay urging scepticism on global warming published on the AdelaideNow website, Senator Cory Bernardi argues science is being distorted and manipulated to present a one-sided view to the public. Senator Bernardi is a confidant of Finance Minister Nick Minchin and Foreign Affairs Minister Alexander Downer and his views are likely to have considerable support at senior levels of the Federal Government.

It is understood his essay is intended to signal future government policy aimed at prudent measures on climate change, rather than drastic action." (The Advertiser)

"McCain Calls for Controls on Greenhouse Gases" - "Senator John McCain will say global warming “is a serious and urgent economic, environmental and national security challenge,” according to released excerpts of a speech." (New York Times)

"Hollywood Celebrities Challenged To Take The “Gore Pledge”" - "Senator Inhofe Asks Hollywood’s Global Warming Activists “Are You Ready to Change the Way You Live” (EPW)

"The Stop Global Warming College Tour" - "Last night (Thursday April 19, 2007) Laurie David’s self-professed brainchild (dreamed up over lunch with her rockstar girl friend Sheryl Crow), the “Stop Global Warming College Tour” blew into town. Apparently the previous stops on the tour must have seemed like global warming love-ins when compared to what Ms. David encountered here in Charlottesville. Maybe it was because Cheryl Crow wasn’t around for support, or that the crowd that was attracted to see Cheryl Crow’s replacement (a free concert by Robert Randolf and the Family Band) was less inclined to get a stern talking to about how they were destroying the environment, than are the followers of Ms. Crow. Or perhaps it was the copious beer. Or maybe it was that the temperature was about 15ºF below normal and a light rain was falling. But whatever the case, it didn’t go so well." (WCR)

"Gore Crusade Enlists Media To Soldier On" - "Back in 2001, when Bryant Gumbel hosted "The Early Show" on CBS, he polled his on-air colleagues. "At the risk of starting an argument, are you a believer in global warming?" The responses were unanimous: "Absolutely." "Of course." "Yeah."

"So am I," affirmed Gumbel, who rued the public's lack of enthusiasm: "I mean, does an iceberg have to come floating down the Hudson before somebody stands up and goes, 'Oh, yeah'?"

Six years later, CBS and the other network morning shows have given up on the iceberg and are busily promoting liberals' global warming scaremongering as certain fact." (IBD)

"Morning TV’s One-Sided Climate Crusade" - "Al Gore has complained that the media are biased against the inconvenient truth of global warming. "I believe that is one of the principal reasons why political leaders around the world have not yet taken action," Gore told a "Media Ethics Summit" at Middle Tennessee State University back in February. Gore lectured journalists that any coverage of views opposed to his own was irresponsible, calling it "balance as bias." (MRC)

This must be highly embarrassing for both real scientists and real journalists:  "Climate reporting 'too balanced' say scientists" - "MELBOURNE: Airing the views of climate change sceptics in the media may only be serving to keep the global warming controversy boiling, argue scientists. Leading climate change experts have warned the World Conference of Science Journalists in Melbourne, Australia, that a balanced view does not always reflect the consensus of the research community." (SciDev.Net) | Editorial bias and the prediction of climate disaster: the crisis of science communication (Benny Peiser, Die Achse des Guten)

"David Suzuki's report to Parliament on his 'If YOU were Prime Minister' tour excludes inconvenient input" - "Ottawa, Canada, April 20, 2007 –The Natural Resources Stewardship Project (NRSP) calls on the David Suzuki Foundation (DSF) to explain the criteria used to decide which input from Canadians were passed on to the Federal government and media today (see). A review of the videos and comments that are highlighted on today's DSF Web page report on the issue reveals not a single seriously dissenting view, or even ones asking for input from both sides of the climate change issue, such as that submitted by NRSP.

NRSP uploaded its own video to the Suzuki You Tube "If You were Prime Minister" group on February 16 and it was initially viewed by 888 discrete visitors to the site resulting in intense on-line discussions both for and against the views expressed therein. On March 31, the NRSP video was deleted for reasons that are unknown to this day." (Canada Free Press)

"Great Global Debate" - "So you think you're up to date on everything there is to know about global warming? Well, what about the viewpoints of the global-warming naysayers, or at least those who refute the idea that man-made carbon dioxide is the principal cause of global warming?

Despite the popularity of the Oscar-winning documentary An Inconvenient Truth, not every member of the documentary community has jumped on what critics call the "global-warming bandwagon," and there's one specific film leading the pack.

The controversial British documentary The Great Global Warming Swindle, shown in the United Kingdom March 8, challenges the carbon dioxide idea. The documentary was produced by Martin Durkin, the man behind Modified Truth and several other controversial documentaries." (Diamondback Online)

"Energy, Oxygen and CO2" - "Many people are asking about the details of energy production, pollution, global warming, and environmentalism. Confusion still reigns supreme in Hollywood, the Main Stream Media (MSM), and environmental organizations, and is more often dispensed in gigabyte quantities by people who have never seen a science book. The public is misled, deceived, and frightened by these industries that learned a long time ago that frightened people will buy more newspapers, news magazines, and watch more movies and “documentaries”. A frightened citizenry in turn makes for dangerous, uninformed, and costly public policy and wasteful fear-driven regulations." (Michael R. Fox, Hawaii Reporter)

"Contribution of land-atmosphere processes to recent European summer heat - A New Paper" - "There is a new paper on the European heat wave of 2003 and of other years. The paper is Fischer E. M., S. I. Seneviratne, D. Lüthi, C. Schär (2007), Contribution of land-atmosphere coupling to recent European summer heat waves, Geophys. Res. Lett., 34, L06707, doi:10.1029/2006GL029068." (Climate Science)

"New Program To Evaluate The Major Role of Nitrogen Within The Climate System" - "Climate Science has reported on the very important role of nitrogen deposition within the climate system. There is now a new program which identifies environmental risks associated with nitrogen pollution. With much of the attention on carbon dioxide as the dominate climate forcing, this intent to include nitrogen pollution is a much needed broadening of environmental concerns." (Climate Science)

"Cold Irony: ABC's Sam Stuck in Snowfield for Report on Wind Power" - "Mother Nature must have a wicked sense of humor. She forced ABC's Sam Champion to report on anti-global warming initiative . . . . while standing in a field of snow in late April." (Mark Finkelstein, News Busters)

"Will Lemmings Fall Off Climate Change Cliff?" - "Contrary to popular belief, lemmings do not commit mass suicide by leaping off of cliffs into the sea. In fact, they are quite fond of staying alive. A bigger threat to the rodents is climate change, which could deprive them of the snow they need for homes and lock up their food in ice, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society, which is launching a study to examine how these tiny but important players in the ecological health of the far North will fare in the age of global warming." (SPX)

Today's meaching: "Meacher: 'Blair's Britain makes me sick'" - "Tony Blair has created a "staggering degree of inequality" in Britain, perpetuated a culture of greed and undermined democracy, according to one of those vying to succeed him." (Sunday Telegraph)

"NYC Hopes Green Plan Will Spread Like Smoking Ban" - "NEW YORK - New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg Friday raised the possibility of charging rush-hour motorists new fees as part of a traffic-jam-fighting strategy and using the extra money to improve mass transit." (Reuters)

"Australia: Carbon trading 'futile' without China, the US" - "HUMAN activity is contributing to climate change but programs like emissions trading are futile unless big polluters such as China and the US are on board, Treasurer Peter Costello says.

The Government is waiting on a report into the benefits of joining a carbon trading scheme but would seek assurances that the rest of the world also was moving forward on the issue, the federal treasurer told ABC Radio.

"Over a long period of time, let's say 50 years or 100 years, there is evidence that the climate is changing and there is scientific evidence that over the next hundred it will probably change by a degree or two as well," Mr Costello said." (The Australian)

"Delta Airlines says: A sucker born every minute" - "Recently I received this email from Delta Airlines with the offer that now I could pay extra money for my airline ticket so that Delta could contribute to global warming "offsets" by planting trees. This allows frequent or not so frequent flyers to assuage their guilt over flying in an airplane propelled by earth killing petroleum based fuel.

Only one problem: Delta apparently never read the recent press release from Lawrence Livermore Labs on the link between too many trees at certain latitudes and increased global warming. Such a conundrum." (Watt's Up with That?)

"Don't Bet on Offsets" - "This story is part of the Center for Investigative Reporting's multimedia climate change investigation, which includes the documentary Hot Politics, airing on PBS's Frontline April 24, and at pbs.org/frontline" (A. C. Thompson & Duane Moles, The Nation)

"A US Carbon Market Could Learn From Europe - IETA" - "NEW YORK - The United States has an opportunity to learn from mistakes made in the Europe Union's carbon trade, but the longer it waits to create a market on greenhouse emissions, the more it stands to loose, board members of a global emissions carbon trading group said." (Reuters)

Uh-huh... and the lesson is "DON'T DO IT!"

"Indians make cool £300m in carbon farce" - "BRITISH companies are handing over millions of pounds to an Indian chemical plant so that western firms can continue to pump out thousands of tons of greenhouse gases.

In a deal that has angered environmentalists, the Indian company SRF, which produces refrigeration gases at a sprawling chemical plant in Rajasthan, stands to make a profit of more than £300m from the bizarre arrangement that is supposed to combat climate change.

The deal is part of the new so-called carbon market where companies in developed countries pay those in developing nations to reduce their production of greenhouse gases. By doing so, western companies can increase their own output of carbon dioxide in a trade-off." (London Times)

"Tories exaggerate Kyoto's price tag" - "After years of inaction on global warming, most Canadians would agree that meeting our Kyoto Protocol targets by 2012 would require a Herculean effort. From where we stand now, we would have to slash our greenhouse gas emissions by more than one-third over the next four years.

The fastest way to achieve the targets – a 6 per cent cut in emissions from 1990 levels – would be for Canada to buy costly emissions credits from the developing world. But such an approach is a huge waste of money because it means billions of dollars would be shipped out of Canada, instead of being reinvested here to clean up our industries." (Toronto Star)

"Japan, US eye emission-free coal plant: report" - "Japan and the United States will lead a five-nation project to develop a coal-fired power plant which discharges no carbon dioxide into the air, a press report said Sunday.

The five nations, including China, India and South Korea, are expected to sign a deal this year on technological cooperation for the project, the leading business daily Nikkei said quoting Japanese government sources.

The new plant will cut carbon dioxide emissions by some 20 percent from the level of conventional models by gasifying coal with oxygen before burning it." (AFP)

"Norway Faces Tough Road to Zero Emissions in 2050" - "OSLO - Norway will have to decide on how much extra costs to impose on its oil and gas industry before it can implement its goal to slash net emissions of greenhouse gases to zero by 2050." (Reuters)

"American ruling could put gas guzzlers off the road" - "The threat of national limits on carbon dioxide emissions could kill off big macho vehicles like the Hummer and the Corvette, writes Ray Hutton." (Sunday Times)

"Stanford Atmospheric Chemist: Ethanol Blends Worse Polluters Than Normal Gasoline" - "Did you hear about that report released last week from a Stanford University atmospheric chemist demonstrating that the tailpipe emissions from cars using E85 ethanol are actually more dangerous than those using normal gasoline? You didn’t?" (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"Stop coming to work and save the planet" - "For most of us facing gridlocked roads and packed trains, the Monday morning commute is a more pressing concern than climate change. But there may be a single solution to both, according to business leaders. The Institute of Directors is calling for flexible hours and more home working to help tackle global warming." (Sunday Telegraph)

"Which way is the greenest road?" - "Which alternative is the best? Which is the most likely to have potential? The answers probably depend on specific circumstances.

Most experts agree there will not be one predominant solution to the energy and environmental challenges we face. Nothing will dominate the way gasoline did through most of the 20th century, unless it is gasoline itself, which is likely to remain the primary fuel of choice well into the future.

Each alternative has its own merits. But for each solution, there is a "but".

Often, what appears to be a promising fuel or energy source from a vehicular perspective loses lustre when the energy used or emissions generated in retrieving, processing or distributing the fuel is taken into account.

In other words, achieving zero smog-forming emissions or a very low level of carbon dioxide out the tailpipe is not always a net benefit to the environment." (Toronto Star)

"US : To Drill or Not to Drill Off the Florida Coast" - "TAMPA, United States - The issue of whether or not oil companies should be allowed to drill off the coast of the south-eastern U.S. state of Florida -- especially along the Gulf of Mexico -- is creating political friction for state and federal government politicians alike." (IPS)

"Bush Administration Gains Support for New Approach on Global Food Aid" - "The Bush administration has renewed its push for a fundamental change in the way food aid for the world’s hungry is bought and delivered." (New York Times)

"An unhealthy obsession" - "IT WAS a natural food shop filled with the displays of fruit and vegetables, baskets of wheat germ and other items pulsing with natural goodness.

They sold only one brand of bubbly water, proudly labelled "organic mineral water". Organic water? What on earth does that mean?

Mineral water contains minerals which are inorganic compounds not the compounds of carbon required for an "organic" product. Water can't be organic.

It's a nonsense designed to seduce consumers into believing they are buying something special. And the suckers line up for more. The organic food industry is booming with ever more people deluded into thinking that paying two or three times more for organic food products will provide them with healthier, safer food.

With the nonsensical claims made about these food products, it is surprising how few Australian scientists, nutritional experts, or just people with common sense speak out about this subject in Australia." (Courier-Mail)

"China Blamed for Half of Korea's Mercury Pollution" - "In late January 2006, a photograph posted on the NASA website taken by satellite showed a mass of thick smog rushing on westerly winds from China to the Korean Peninsula. At the time, the concentration of mercury (Hg), the pollutant blamed for Minamata disease in Japan, was over 10 times higher than normal, threatening people’s health, especially that of children, the old and infirm and pregnant women. Airborne mercury seeps into the ground and water and is deposited in fish and the human body via the food chain." (Chosun Ilbo)

"China fears toxic threat to farmland" - "China's industrial and urban sprawl has left more than 10% of its farmland contaminated, an official survey shows, while arable areas continue to shrink despite Beijing's efforts to halt the trend. Pollution combined with the land squeeze poses a "severe threat" to China's ability to feed itself, the official Xinhua news agency quoted an official at the land and resources ministry as saying." (The Guardian)

"GM trial sows hope for farmers" - "VICTORIA'S first crop of genetically modified wheat is set to be growing within weeks, after a positive response from the federal regulator to a State Government proposal. But the Government has been warned it must stick to strict safety measures if it is to proceed with the trial of drought-resistant wheat." (The Age)

"BT cotton not caused any negative impact on safety" - "Coimbatore, April 15: BT cotton has neither caused any negative impact related to safety of human or animal or environment nor has there been any crop contamination or pest resistance any where in the world for the last 11 years, an expert in the field and a key member of Mahyco-Monsanto team has claimed.

In fact, safety had been accorded the highest priority in biotechnology and in the last five years of its commercial cultivation in the country and for 11 years in on thousands of hectares in several other countries, it has an impeccable global safety record as are the other BT-crops, T M Manjunath in his just released book "Q and A on BT-Cotton India: Answers to more than 70 questions on all aspects," maintained." (PTI)

"300 BPA Corn Coming Soon" - "If yields of 300 bushels per acre sound like fantasy, then think again. Researchers at Pioneer Hybrid suggest a major corn yield breakthrough is just a few years away. Joe Keaschall, Director of Corn Research for the Midwest, told Hoosier Ag Today that recent genetic advances have the potential to increase corn yields very quickly, “We have been averaging about a 1 or 2 bpa increase in yields every year; but, with the efficiencies we are finding in plant breeding, we think we can double that.” Pioneer and their parent company, DuPont, have made a major commitment to increasing yields and will hire 400 researchers world wide to focus on the project." (Hoosier Ag Today)

"State envisions BT policy, to make it strategic priority sector" - "Gandhinagar, April 17: GUJARAT is all set to get a biotechnology (BT) policy aimed at giving fillip to the cutting-edge sector by focusing on incentives, human resource development, and infrastructure development. Likely to be announced by in-charge Minister for Science and Technology Anandiben Patel on Wednesday, the policy would put in place a framework aimed at leveraging Gujarat’s existing entrepreneurial strengths in pharma sector." (Express News Service)

"Ghana: USAID Director Sees Nothing Wrong With Biotechnology" - "The West Africa Mission Director of USAID, Dr J. Cheema has said that biotechnology is one of the tools that can help African countries to achieve sustainable agricultural growth. According to Dr Cheema, African agriculture needs to grow faster not only to feed a growing African population, but also to raise incomes and boost trade if the continent is to improve its position in the world economy. "However, it is not stand-alone solution and must be pursued in conjunction with other improvements in agricultural management such as seed delivery systems and appropriate regulations in order to encourage the private sector investment" she said." (Public Agenda)

"GM Crops Could Save World Of Food Woes" - "KUALA LUMPUR, April 18 -- Genetically modified crops could be the answer to the world's food shortage in future, especially with the rapid growth of human population, Nobel laureate Professor Werner Arber said Wednesday.

He said genetically engineered crops would not only be able to meet increasing food consumption and help reduce hunger in the world, but could also provide the nutrients much needed by both humans and animals.

"The general public should not treat genetic engineering as a threat that could modify the DNA of living organisms, but should see it as an evolution process that takes place naturally in the environment," he told reporters after delivering a talk on "The Impact of Science and Technology on Civilisation" at Universiti Malaya, here Wednesday." (Bernama)

April 20, 2007

"DDT Backlash Begins" - "Seven months after the World Health Organization reversed its deadly 30-year ban on the use of DDT to fight malaria, the anti-DDT movement is up to its old tricks." (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

The empire strikes back (Number Watch)

With more than a grain of salt: "Eating less salt could prevent cardiovascular disease" - "People who significantly cut back on the amount of salt in their diet could reduce their chances of developing cardiovascular disease by a quarter, according to a report on bmj.com today. Researchers in Boston also found a reduction in salt intake could lower the risk of death from cardiovascular disease by up to a fifth." (BMJ-British Medical Journal)

"A baby 'paradox'" - "Ever wonder why we only hear that fat is bad? The certainty with which everything in the news seems to confirm this popular belief, while contradictory evidence is ignored, misinterpreted or downplayed, is an example of confirmation bias. Society’s purported professional observers, news reporters, have become experts in observational selection: counting the hits and ignoring the misses. So it’s not surprising that they ignored this notable study. After all, fat babies can’t possibly be good." (Junkfood Science)

"0 + 0 = 2" - "A puzzling study was just published in Obesity, the journal of the North American Association for the Study of Obesity (NAASO). It was puzzling not because of the unexpected results, but because despite finding their program was ineffective for preventing “inappropriate” weight gain among elementary students, the researchers were given a $2.1 million grant by the National Institutes of Health to expand it." (Junkfood Science)

"'Glycemic load' of diet has no effect on weight loss" - "NEW YORK - When it comes to losing weight, the number of calories you eat, rather than the type of carbohydrates, may be what matters most, according to a new study.

The findings, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, suggest that diets low in "glycemic load" are no better at taking the pounds off than more traditional -- and more carbohydrate-friendly -- approaches to calorie-cutting." (Reuters Health)

"Smoking ban adverts to be investigated" - "The Advertising Standards Authority is to ask for proof to substantiate claims made by the Department of Health about the dangers of passive smoking.

The watchdog will act after receiving 26 complaints about the 'Invisible Killer’ TV ads which featured cigarette smoke blowing around a wedding party and into the mouths and noses of non-smokers." (Morning Advertiser)

"UN Lauds Al Gore, Environment Leaders at Green Awards" - "SINGAPORE - The United Nations named former US Vice President Al Gore and Olympics chief Jacques Rogge as recipients of environmental awards on Thursday, and urged more action to stop global warming." (Reuters)

"Sudden Sea Level Surges Threaten 1 Billion - Study" - "SAN FRANCISCO - More than 1 billion people live in low-lying areas where a sudden surge in sea level could prove as disastrous as the 2004 Asian tsunami, according to new research presented on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Researchers forecast 1 in 3 chance of record low sea ice in 2007" - "University of Colorado at Boulder researchers are forecasting a one in three chance that the 2007 minimum extent of sea ice across the Arctic region will set an all-time record low." (University of Colorado at Boulder)

"Managers speculate effects of cold winter on salmon survival" - "Fishery managers do not know for sure how this long, cold winter and slow start to spring will affect salmon numbers over the next few years, but they have a good idea of the possibilities based on past data." (Kodiak Daily Mirror)

"A Little Testy at RealClimate" - "Based on my most recent interaction, the folks at RealClimate seem less interested than ever on an open exchange of views on scientific topics. But I guess that is what might be expected when one points out that the they are spreading misinformation." (Prometheus)

"Hurricane/Global Warming Link Weakens Further (not much left)" - "The atmosphere above the major hurricane formation and intensification region in the Atlantic ocean continues to evolve in a manner that is virtually opposite to the way it is projected to evolve by climate models run with increasing levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide and other anthropogenic emissions. This fact suggests that the role played by natural variability in the recent upswing in hurricane activity in the Atlantic Ocean (including storms striking the U. S. coastline) is likely large and significant. A just-published paper further adds to this evidence." (WCR)

Hopefully this is a joke: Global Warming Troubles (The Goat)

"Valley's 'heat island' defined: ASU professor's model shows thermal change" - "Anyone wondering whether it's really getting hotter in the Valley needn't wonder anymore. It is.

Arizona State University engineering Professor Harindra Fernando, with the help of a graduate student, has created a graphic computer modeling system that shows more clearly what the term "heat island" means to the Valley.

According to the graphic model, Valley temperatures have climbed in recent years from three to eight degrees in various areas, and as much as 10 degrees in some areas during the summer." (Arizona Republic)

"An Excellent Media Summary On The Need For Regional and Local Climate And Other Environmental Information" - "An excellent news report on the need for regional and local scale climate and environmental information has been published on April 19, 2007 in the Guardian Unlimited. The article is by James Bloom and is entitled “Think global, calculate local”. (Climate Science)

"Office For Climate Change" - "A New York State Office of Climate Change has been formed. The 684-thousand dollars was included in the state budget. The office will be in the Department of Environmental Conservation and have 12 staffers." (News Channel 34)

"New Zealand: National, Greens join forces in Kyoto challenge" - "Two unlikely political allies have accused the Government of vastly understating the financial deficit New Zealand will face from the Kyoto Protocol.

National Party climate change spokesman Nick Smith yesterday claimed the deficit was more likely to be $1.7 billion than the $567 million being estimated by the Treasury.

He is supported by the Greens, whose only reservation is that Dr Smith's estimate may be too low." (New Zealand Herald)

The Old Gibbering Crone gets it wrong, again: "Warming and Global Security" - "People who give short shrift to environmental matters pay attention when national security becomes part of the conversation. So the debate over global warming took a useful turn this week as diplomats and retired military officers drew persuasive connections between climate change and the very real potential for regional upheavals." (New York Times)

Such security considerations would apply to similar worlds as portrayed by climate models but have no applicability to the real world.

Eye-roller du jour: "Timeline: The Frightening Future of Earth" - "Our planet's prospects for environmental stability are bleaker than ever with the approach of this year’s Earth Day, April 22. Global warming is widely accepted as a reality by scientists and even by previously doubtful government and industrial leaders. And according to a recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), there is a 90 percent likelihood that humans are contributing to the change." (Live Science)

Complete nonsense: "Global Warming Swelling Insurance Risk" - "WASHINGTON - The insurer of last resort, the government faces a potential payout of at least $919 billion under a worst-case scenario of flood and crop losses due to global warming, congressional investigators say." (AP)

"Senator Boxer Charts Road Ahead on Global Warming" - "In a speech at the National Press Club today, U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, outlined the steps the Environmental Protection Agency should take immediately to address global warming. She also discussed new developments in the Senate on legislation to address global warming pollution, and steps individuals can take to reduce their own contributions to global warming pollution." (E&PW)

"U.N. urges businesses to tackle climate change, think 'green'" - "SINGAPORE: Businesses in both developed and emerging economies must implement environment-friendly operations if they want to compete in this more environmentally aware world, U.N. officials said Thursday." (Associated Press)

Proving you can fool most of the people some of the time: "This Earth Day, a focus on Earth's warming" - "Public awareness about climate change is growing; 83 percent of Americans now call it a 'serious' problem." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Scientist: Warming not caused by humans" - "MADISON - Roy Spencer is speaking up about his belief that Earth is not headed toward a global warming disaster.

Spencer, a principal research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and former NASA scientist, said he knows he's in the minority with his opinions, but he doesn't believe manmade influences are causing catastrophic climate changes." (Huntsville Times)

Just what no one needs: "Lawyers have been leaders in seeing green" - "It stands to reason that if governments, or their pals in business, don't fix things up, lawyers will enter the void and sue the pants off anyone they can get their hands on. We see it all the time with litigation against cigarette manufacturers, the miners and purveyors of asbestos, and the pushers of fatty foodstuffs ("cheeseburger litigation").

Over time law cases affecting these industries have transferred wads of shareholders' money to lawyers; some has even trickled down to unfortunate consumers.

So it's only a matter of time before a global warming litigation industry builds up a decent head of steam. One would think the scientific evidence is sufficiently in to meet a civil standard of proof.

There's a new book out which dwells on these issues. It's called Climate Change Litigation, written by a couple of South Australians - Dr Joseph Smith, a lawyer, and Professor David Shearman, a medico. Interestingly, the project was funded by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council, which suggests at least it is aware of the implication for public health posed by global warming.

Shearman says that this implication is "certain to lead to litigious outcomes." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"Jobless Rate Could Soar on Kyoto Compliance - Canada" - "OTTAWA - Canada's unemployment rate would jump by 25 percent and its economy would move into recession if the country had to implement short-term Kyoto Protocol targets immediately, the Conservative government warned on Thursday." (Reuters)

Weird: "Norway Aims to be Carbon Neutral by 2050" - "OSLO - Norway wants to cut its net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050 in the world's toughest national plan for fighting global warming, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said on Thursday. He said that Norway, the world's number five oil exporter, wanted other rich nations to set similar "carbon neutral" aims." (Reuters)

"AFRICA : Green Investment to Get Boost from New EU Fund" - "BRUSSELS - After years of promising a way to help Africa tackle climate change, the European Union has joined with the World Bank to attract foreign direct investment to the continent and help save the planet at the same time." (IPS)

"Italy Energy Demand Seen up 2 Pct in 2007 - UP" - "MILAN - Italian demand for oil, gas and other primary energy sources is expected to rise some 2 percent this year and will grow at least until 2020, but consumption should become more efficient, Unione Petrolifera (UP) said." (Reuters)

As silly as Bill? "Car makers get green message" - "Alan Mulally, Ford's new chief executive officer, is ready to move on. He's all done with the debates over the science of global warming and instead, like many in the auto industry, he is ready to face the challenges ahead -- challenges he has as leader of a consumer products company whose customers are showing increasing interest in fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly vehicles." (Globe and Mail)

"N.S. energy regulator aims to awaken offshore with cheaper licences" - "HALIFAX - Nova Scotia's petroleum regulator is hoping cheaper exploration licences will inspire a fresh generation of massive offshore rigs to head to sea and search the depths for elusive hydrocarbons." (CP)

"Ethanol policy divides Latin America" - "US efforts to promote ethanol have raised food prices in the region." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Catching that chilly draft" - "Informed Energy Decisions helps developers, contractors and homeowners improve buildings' energy performance. Using everything from high-tech infrared heat scanners to old-fashioned expertise, they look for air leaks, building shell problems, insulation deficiencies, faulty heating and cooling equipment -- anything that might waste energy.

"We've only had one person call us because they were concerned about global warming," said John Porterfield, a co-owner of the company who has been doing energy audits on buildings since the 1970s. "Most people call us and say one of two things: 'I'm freezing in here, and look at these fuel bills,' or, 'Look at these fuel bills, and I'm freezing in here.'" (Chicago Sun-Times)

In other words non-viable 'industries' that exist purely to milk the public purse: "Renewables firms left idle as DTI halts green grants" - "Renewables firms are laying off staff because the government has shut its grant scheme that helps households adopt green energy technologies such as solar panels. The grant suspension means not a penny has been committed to any household since March 1, leading to accusations that it has made a mockery of the government's green credentials.

The Department of Trade and Industry has tried to support the fledgling renewables industry in recent years with a series of grant schemes designed to make technologies such as solar, wind and ground source heat pumps cheap enough to appeal to domestic users." (The Guardian)

"Plastic solar cell efficiency breaks record at Wake Forest Nanotechnology Center" - "The global search for a sustainable energy supply is making significant strides at Wake Forest University as researchers at the university's Center for Nanotechnology and Molecular Materials have announced that they have pushed the efficiency of plastic solar cells to more than 6 percent." (Wake Forest University)

"Divisions Surface Over Nuclear Option" - "BERLIN - Several governments are planning new investment in nuclear energy, ignoring opposition by environmental scientists who say that nuclear power is not a solution to providing carbon- free energy." (IPS)

"Russia Floats Nuclear Power Plants for Export" - "MOSCOW - Russia has started building the world's first floating nuclear power station, officials said, a project anti-nuclear activists say is the most dangerous to come out of the atomic sector for a decade.

Russia hopes to export the power plants for use in seas from the Indian Ocean to the Arctic. The first floating station is due to be ready in 2010 and there are plans to build six more." (Reuters)

"Europe's Nuclear Waste Conundrum" - "A new study has found that large swaths of Germany could be suitable to store highly radioactive nuclear waste. But that doesn't mean the problem is any closer to being solved." (Der Spiegel)

"British Gas Sees Billions in Green Energy" - "LONDON - British Gas said on Thursday it was launching a new green energy unit, targeting a market it values in billions of pounds." (Reuters)

"Nestlé Bottling Operations Court Controversy" - "WASHINGTON, Apr 19 - As Nestlé shareholders gathered Thursday in Switzerland for their annual meeting, growing numbers of voices question the company's claims on spring water around the world and its effects on local communities.

The Sierra Club, a U.S.-based environmental organisation and shareholder in Nestlé and Corporate Accountability International, led a gathering of concerned citizens at Nestlé's North American headquarters in the north-eastern city of Greenwich, Connecticut to call on the company to "respect the right of local communities to exercise democratic control over the use of their water." (IPS)

"India's Monsoon Rains Expected to be Near Normal" - "NEW DELHI - India's weather office said on Thursday this year's monsoon rains were likely to be 95 percent of the long-term average, which analysts said would help stimulate Asia's fourth-largest economy." (Reuters)

"EU Grain Crops Flourish but Drought Fears Persist" - "PARIS - Soil moisture in most of Europe is sufficient to spur grain crops, but a recent lack of rain and forecasts for more dry weather have revived fears of a repeat of last year's damaging drought, analysts say." (Reuters)

"Malaysia to Enforce Labelling of GM Foods" - "PENANG - A long-awaited law to make the labelling of genetically modified (GM) products mandatory is expected to be finally passed in Malaysian parliament this month and come into force by the end of the year." (IPS)

"Two unsprayed rows mitigate effect of GMHT sugar beet on bird populations" - "LEAVING two rows of sugar beet in every 100 unsprayed would mitigate any adverse effects of genetically-modified herbicide-tolerant sugar beet on food for farmland birds, according to research conducted at Broom’s Barn.

The Government’s Farm Scale Evaluation (FSE) trials of GM herbicide tolerant sugar beet showed that the technology could potentially have an adverse impact on food for farmland birds if a ‘weed-free’ management approach was adopted.

However, new research, published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society, demonstrates that leaving two crop rows in every 100 unsprayed presents a cheap and simple approach to avoiding any adverse impacts on bird populations." (Farmers Guardian)

April 19, 2007

"The rotten fruit of junk science" - "Fanatical environmentalists prevent impoverished nations from using the very technologies that developed countries employed to become rich, comfortable and free of disease.

So charges Paul Driessen, in his recent book, "Eco-Imperialism: Green Power, Black Death." He goes on to say, "Well-fed, affluent bureaucrats of the E.U., the U.N., the U.S., and any number of environmental protection groups force their unfounded radical views on developing nations.

"This is not another denunciation of the myth of global warming. Although as tempting a target as ever, we hurry on today. Driessen's book asserts that DDT is the only effective tool in the renewed battle against the killer disease, malaria. Furthermore, the link between DDT and thinning egg shells of eagles is quite tenuous." (Lahontan Valley News)

"Media Don't Stop to Count the Cost of Green Activism" - "Conservation is a cause that has been espoused by some thoughtful Americans at least since the days of Thoreau, a cause whose time has come because life is running out," the New York Times editorialized on the first Earth Day, April 22, 1970.

Media support for environmentalism is not waning since the first Earth Day, in fact uncritical coverage of green rallies and protest is the norm nearly 37 years later." (Julia A. Seymour, News Busters)

Lots of this about... "Women undergoing HRT face increased risk of getting cancer" - "It was once described as the last frontier in the emancipation of women, a pill that would ease the transition through the menopause and allow those who took it to slip into a contented middle age. Now the world's largest study of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) has shown that it may have caused 1,000 deaths from ovarian cancer between 1991 and 2005." (London Independent)

... and I haven't yet been through the study. That said it raises the neck hairs somewhat since the implication of the hypothesis is that HRT causes immediate cancer (unlikely, to say the least), otherwise there would be a tapering in diagnosed cancer over a significant period rather than an immediate, albeit tiny step change in one year with no change the following year. Making such a distinction even less likely is that they are talking a total (possible) mortality of 1,000 over 15 years out of many millions of users (estimated at 10-20 million) with combined exposure somewhere between 150 million and 300 million dose/years (taking the prescribed dose for 1 year). Who thinks they could reliably detect one 'extra' mortality per 150,000-300,000 dose/years?

"Study reports changing to a low-fat diet can induce stress" - "Changing one's diet to lose weight is often difficult. There may be physical and psychological effects from a changed diet that reduce the chances for success. With nearly 65% of the adult population currently classified as overweight or obese and with calorically dense foods high in fat and carbohydrates readily available, investigating those factors that contribute to dieting failures is an important effort." (Elsevier Health Sciences)

"Can being a chubby child really increase ear infections?" - "If we believed the news earlier this week: “Overweight children are more likely to need ear tubes.” Even Forbes uncritically reported that a new study found “children who were treated for ear infections were fatter than the other children.” WebMD took an especially interesting angle, noting that “childhood obesity and otitis media with effusion are rising, but before now, no one had investigated whether the two conditions might be connected.” And by this morning, the headlines had grown to: “Childhood Obesity Causes Ear Infections.” (Junkfood Science)

"Update on fat camper public enemas" - "There has been considerable interest in the upcoming E! Television reality show depicting a “wellness” camp with Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie as counselors." (Junkfood Science)

"Chris Landsea on New Hurricane Science" - "Chris Landsea has submitted a guest post today on a recent paper on hurricanes and global warming." (Prometheus)

"Scientists to track impact of Asian dust and pollution on clouds, weather, climate change" - "Scientists using the nation's newest and most capable aircraft for environmental research are launching a far-reaching field project this month to study plumes of airborne dust and pollutants that originate in Asia and journey to North America. The plumes are among the largest such events on Earth, so great in scope that scientists believe they might affect clouds and weather across thousands of miles while playing a role in global climate." (NASA)

"Iris effect remains alive and well" - "Some readers may want to look at a lecture by Prof Richard Lindzen - 51-slide PDF file. The claimed agreement of existing climate models with reality may be described as curve fitting. There are good reasons to think that there is a couple of important negative feedbacks related to water vapor and clouds that make the CO2 climate sensitivity small." (The Reference Frame)

Whoops! How did this get past the AGW Propagandameister? "Kilimanjaro's ice set to linger" - "A fresh assessment suggests the famous ice fields on Africa's tallest mountain will be around for decades yet. Recent concerns that climate warming would rob Mount Kilimanjaro of all its glaciers within 20 years are overly pessimistic, say Austrian scientists. Their weather station data and modelling work indicate the tropical ice should last well beyond 2040. Precipitation and not temperature is the key to the white peak's future, the University of Innsbruck-led team says. "About five years ago Kilimanjaro was being used as an icon for global warming. We know now that this was far too simplistic a view," said Thomas Moelg." (BBC)

"Another Paper On Ocean Heat Content Which Documents Continuing Problems With The Ability to Skillfully Simulate Climate Process" - "There is another useful paper on the ocean heat content issue, which adds to the discussion of ocean heat content. It is Gleckler, P. J., K. R. Sperber, and K. AchutaRao (2006), Annual cycle of global ocean heat content: Observed and Simulated, J. Geophys. Res., 111, C06008, doi:10.1029/2005JC003223." (Climate Science)

"Killer Trees" - "Climate Change: Ronald Reagan once declared that air pollution comes from trees. He was right then and he's right now. Psssst: Trees can also contribute to global warming." (IBD)

Oh dear... "Scientist says cremation should meet a timely death" - "SYDNEY - An Australian scientist called Wednesday for an end to the age-old tradition of cremation, saying the practice contributed to global warming." (AFP)

"'Green' rockers lack any cred" - "FOR all their good intentions, the global Live Earth concerts scheduled for mid-year will still struggle for credibility.

The problem: Rock stars." (Daily Telegraph)

"John Gore Kerry" - "John Kerry is an Al Gore wannabe. First, he followed him as the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee. Then Kerry followed Gore in writing an environmental book. Now Kerry has followed him as an energy hypocrite." (Don Surber)

California, where else? "'Low Carbon Diet' Aims to Take Bite Out of Global Warming" - "A company that serves more than 80 million meals each year is preparing to mark Earth Day this Sunday by giving global warming activists "a new ally in their fight to save the planet - lunch." (CNSNews.com)

Beckett's no Milk-snatcher, eh? "UN rebuff for Britain on global warming" - "BRITAIN has run into a wall of reluctance spearheaded by China after telling the United Nations that there are few greater threats to global security than climate change.

The British Foreign Secretary, Margaret Beckett, chaired the UN Security Council's first debate on global warming on Tuesday. Fifty-two countries lined up to speak in the debate, which Britain initiated as it holds the rotating presidency of the council.

"This is an issue which threatens the peace and security of the whole planet - this has to be the right place to debate it," Mrs Beckett said.

But China's deputy ambassador to the UN, Liu Zhenmin, was blunt in rejecting the session.

"The developing countries believe that [the] Security Council does not have the professional competence for handling climate change, nor is it the right decision-making place for extensive participation," Mr Liu said.

China and Russia, among others, warned that the council's mandate was limited to peace and security. So did Pakistan, on behalf of 130 developing nations, which argued that the council was encroaching on more representative bodies, such as the 192-member General Assembly." (Sydney Morning Herald)

Uh-oh... another one's figured it out: "Kyoto will be disaster for Turkey, says State Planning Agency" - "If the Kyoto Protocol is signed as it stands, there may be a 37 percent decrease in Gross Domestic Product The cost of the Kyoto Protocol would be between $40 and $148 billion." (Turkish Daily News)

"Too Many People" - "Population: Global warming, we've said repeatedly, isn't about science. Those who push us to take sweeping actions to curb warming often have a much different, far more radical agenda." (IPS)

"BusinessWeek Lauds 'Savvier Media' for Silencing Global Warming Skeptics" - "BusinessWeek praised 'savvier media' for helping discredit global warming skeptics in an article focused on corporate support for carbon cap legislation, which will cost businesses and consumers." (Julia A. Seymour, News Busters)

"Climate change sceptics say it's hard to get heard" - "BRUSSELS - Sceptics of the seriousness of global warming complained on Wednesday of not being heard by the public or policy makers while warning governments to take a second look at the scientific consensus on climate change. Scientists who doubt the scope and cause of climate change have trouble getting funding and academic posts unless they conform to an "alarmist scenario", said Roger Helmer, a British member of the European Parliament, at a panel discussion on appropriate responses to rising global temperatures." (Reuters)

Why? "Giant carbon vacuums could cool Earth" - "Tall metal structures would scrub the greenhouse gas from the air." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"China to Become Top CO2 Emitter in 2007 or '08 - IEA" - "LONDON - China will overtake the United States as the world's biggest emitter of heat-trapping carbon dioxide (CO2) either this year or next, the chief economist at the International Energy Agency, Fatih Birol, said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"No US Emissions Curbs Without China, India - Envoy" - "BRUSSELS - The United States will not join an international regime curbing emissions blamed for global warming until it also applied to China and India, the US ambassador to the European Union said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Republicans See Global Warming Alarmism" - "House Republicans made it clear Wednesday they won't make things easy for Democrats trying to lay the groundwork for legislation on greenhouse gases and climate change.

At the first hearing of a special committee established by Speaker Nancy Pelosi to make the case for a bill, Republicans questioned efforts to paint global warming as a national security threat.

"Unfortunately, this debate hasn't been characterized by common sense. It's been characterized by extremism," said Wisconsin Rep. James Sensenbrenner, the senior Republican on the panel. "While this extremism hasn't done anything to produce effective solutions, it has created a lot of hot air, which hasn't been good for Congress' carbon footprint." (AP)

"Canada Mulls Diluting Emissions Targets - Document" - "OTTAWA - As recently as last week Canadian officials mulled whether to weaken the government's commitment to cut emissions of greenhouse gases blamed for global warming, according to a leaked document." (Reuters)

"Is Canada’s Shift on Climate Change Part of a Larger Trend?" - "Yesterday’s announcement by the Canadian government—that it may join a US-led coalition focused on voluntary emissions cuts—could be part of a global shift away from Kyoto’s binding targets." (Kenneth P. Green, American.com)

"German Cabinet Accepts EU's CO2 Allocation Plan" - "BERLIN - Germany on Wednesday accepted a European Commission cap of 453 million tonnes of annual carbon emissions from next year following the resolution of internal wrangling over how to meet the target." (Reuters)

"Spain's CO2 Emissions Fell in 2006 - Study" - "MADRID - Spain's emissions of carbon dioxide, the main global warming gas, fell by 4.1 percent in 2006 compared with 2005, reversing years of fast growth, a report by environmental group Worldwatch and trade union CCOO showed." (Reuters)

"Move the Clocks Forward to Cut C02, Japan Told" - "TOKYO - Japan should, for the first time, put its clocks forward for summer daylight saving as a way of cutting greenhouse gas emissions, its largest business lobby said on Wednesday. The call came despite the failure of a similar attempt in the United States this year. There an earlier switch to summer daylight saving time has not resulted in any measurable energy saving." (Reuters)

<chuckle> What took them so long? "'Carbon offsets' spread in the hotel environment" - "Every day you stay at a hotel, you may burn enough fossil fuels to release more than 33 pounds of carbon dioxide, the bad boy of global warming, into the atmosphere. But don't worry. Open your wallet, and all is forgiven, or at least that's the pitch of a growing number of programs." (Los Angeles Times)

"Huge Profits From Carbon Offsets" - "Not content with abolishing the economic cycle, the world’s central bankers and finance ministers – led by Gordon Brown and ordained by Pope Al Gore the First – now plan a ‘New World Order’ to fight global warming.

A wealth of tax-funded humbug is certain to follow. So it comes as no surprise to find Wall Street and the City of London urging us all to “go green” as well.

Or rather, the masters of the financial universe would like us all to buy and sell green. Carbon traders worldwide turned over USD$21 billion in the nine months to Oct. ‘06. And if New York is to dominate saving the Earth in the same way that London now dominates the hedge fund industry, it will need to innovate." (Daily Reckoning)

"Brazil Indians Protest Lula Plans For Dams, Roads" - "BRASILIA - Hundreds of tribal Indians have camped out in front of Brazil's Congress to protest infrastructure projects that they say threaten the survival of tribes already struggling with disease and land disputes." (Reuters)

"Tropical Forest Felled for Biofuels, Ecologists Say" - "MADRID - Tropical rain forest is being cut down and burned to make way for soy and palm plantations destined to provide plant-based diesel for Europe's fuel tanks, environmentalists said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Chavez ethanol ire runs out of fuel" - "BUENOS AIRES -- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez yesterday backed away from earlier attacks on an ethanol deal between the United States and Brazil in a move that was seen as a diplomatic setback for Cuban President Fidel Castro. "We aren't against biofuels," Mr. Chavez said at a regional energy summit attended by Latin American heads of state in Venezuela. "In fact we want to import ethanol from Brazil." (Washington Times)

"Uganda Says Poverty Destroying its Forests" - "KAMPALA - While Uganda suffers violent protests over plans to turn a big chunk of its rainforest into sugarcane, Ugandans are destroying eight times as much forest every year due to poverty, a minister said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Elephant Dung Helps Scientists Develop New Biofuel" - "PRAGUE - Scientists in the Netherlands have discovered a fungus in elephant dung that will help them break down fibres and wood into biofuel." (Reuters)

"China Creates First Artificial Snow in Tibet" - "BEIJING - China has created artificial snow for the first time in Tibet, Xinhua news agency reported on Wednesday, months after experts warned of melting glaciers and drought in the Himalayan region." (Reuters)

"Artificial Snow Harms Alpine Water System - Scientists" - "VIENNA - Ski resort operators in the snow-deprived Alps should rethink the use of artificial snow as it saps water reserves and could leave an impact well beyond the region, scientists say." (Reuters)

"Cut the smog as you mow the lawn" - "A federal mandate requires that by 2011 most new lawn mowers must filter out dozens of pollutants." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Earth's Oldest Tree Had Fronds, Not Leaves" - "CHICAGO - The branches of Earth's oldest tree probably waved in the breeze like a modern palm, scientists said on Wednesday, based on two intact tree fossils that help explain the evolution of forests and their influence on climate." (Reuters)

"Casting a cold eye on organics" - "Organic foods are treated in the 'lifestyle' features of the media with a respect bordering on reverence. Interest in such foods is driven by concerns about food safety and the environment, but perhaps also as a fashion statement by the chattering classes. Maybe it's time to 'cast a cold (scientific) eye' over the whole organic sector to see how its various claims and assumptions stand up." (Farmers Journal)

"Swedish scientific breakthrough was faked, researchers say" - "A major Swedish scientific breakthrough in plant physiology that was published in the journal Science in 2005 was based on false data, the research group at Umeaa University said Wednesday." (AFP)

"Cheaper, better disease treatments expected from faster approach to developing antibodies" - "A method of mass-producing disease-fighting antibodies entirely within bacteria has been developed by a research group at The University of Texas at Austin. The group led by Dr. George Georgiou developed the new antibody-production approach to improve upon processes used previously to identify new drugs. Drug companies have used those more time- and labor-intensive processes to develop antibodies for treating rheumatoid arthritis, cancer and other diseases. The new approach developed in collaboration with Dr. Brent Iverson overcomes those obstacles, and has other advantages." (University of Texas at Austin)

"California Bill Requires Cloned Food Labels" - "Steaks, pork chops, milk and other products from cloned livestock would have to be clearly labeled on grocers' shelves under a bill pending in the California Legislature." (AP)

"EU Experts Set to Debate Three New GMO Applications" - "BRUSSELS - EU biotech experts will discuss three applications this week to approve new genetically modified (GMO) plants but are unlikely to break the bloc's longstanding deadlock on GMO foods, officials said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Bread could reduce cancer risk, diabetes" - "BREAD could one day be used to manage diabetes and help prevent some types of cancer, after Australian scientists developed a potential new super grain. Researchers have created wheat that contains high levels of a special type of starch, which in trials of both humans and animals has been shown to reduce intestinal diseases. They hope the wheat could be used to make everyday foods such as bread and breakfast cereal." (AAP)

April 18, 2007

"Malaria-infected mice cured by 1 dose of new drug" - "Johns Hopkins University researchers have cured malaria-infected mice with single shots of a new series of potent, long lasting synthetic drugs modeled on an ancient Chinese herbal folk remedy.

The team also has developed several other compounds which defeated the febrile disease in rodents after three oral doses.

These peroxide compounds, containing a crucial oxygen-oxygen unit, promise not only to be more effective than today's best malaria remedies, but also potentially safer and more efficient, said research team leader Gary Posner, Scowe Professor of Chemistry in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences at Johns Hopkins." (Johns Hopkins University)

"CBS Softballs Doctor Promoting Dangerous Therapy for Autism"  -"Chelation? Mercury in vaccines? Quack, quack! Have CBS producers heard of the Centers for Disease Control, Google?" (Maia Szalavitz, STATS)

"We have ways of making you comply" - "If we want to get or keep a job or government benefits, have affordable health insurance, or be able to find a doctor who will care for us, then we are quickly finding our options limited unless we do what the government or our insurer decides is best. Our ability to decide, with our healthcare provider, what is best for our personal wellbeing and for our loved ones, is steadily being eroded. Those who are aging, minority or of marginalized social status, or born with genes predisposing them to certain health problems (real or perceived) may have the most to lose." (Junkfood science)

Another one: "City ponders trans fats ban" - "Not content to wait for federal action, board of health plans move on dough, batter in restaurants and food services." (Toronto Star)

"US Rejects Call for Tougher UN Environment Role" - "NAIROBI - The United States supports moves to strengthen the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) but sees no need for a new, more powerful UN agency, a US official said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

A little behind the times? "Study: Earth's 4th largest lake shrinking" - "British scientists have determined the Aral Sea is drying so rapidly it has shrunk by two-thirds in fewer than 50 years." (UPI)

"A vanished sea reclaims its form in Central Asia" - "The $85.8 million project, started in 2001, is on track to be completed in September. But it has already shown surprising results. The Kok-Aral Dam has caused the small Aral's level to swiftly rise to 38 meters, or 125 feet, from a low of less than 30 meters; 42 meters is considered the level of viability. Although World Bank water experts had forecast that the water levels would begin to rise only in three years or so - while other experts had put the Aral beyond any hope of reclamation - the small Aral's surface area has already expanded by 30 percent, bloated by about 10 million cubic meters of new water." (Ilan Greenberg, New York Times) | Dam project aims to save Aral Sea (BBC) | Flashback: 1990: Aral Sea is 'world's worst disaster' (BBC)

"Death in the rainforest: fragile creatures give the world a new climate warning" - "A protected rainforest in one of the world's richest biodiversity hotspots has suffered an alarming collapse in amphibians and reptiles, suggesting such havens may fail to slow the creatures' slide towards global extinction.

Conservationists working in a lowland forest reserve at La Selva in Costa Rica used biological records dating from 1970 to show that species of frogs, toads, lizards, snakes and salamanders have plummeted on average 75% in the past 35 years.

Dramatic falls in amphibian and reptile numbers elsewhere in the world have been blamed on habitat destruction and the fungal disease chytridiomycosis, which has inflicted a devastating toll across central and South America. But scientists hoped many species would continue to thrive in dedicated reserves, where building, land-clearance and agricultural chemicals are banned." (The Guardian)

Trouble is, chytridiomycosis has been spread by ecotourism and by amphibian researchers themselves. What has not been discovered is any correlation between local temperatures and/or rainfall that might conceivably indicate climate change is causing amphibious populations any difficulties.

"Global warming health effects: Smog, heat waves may contribute to big rise in illness" - "Higher temperatures over the coming decades are expected to cause more smoggy days and heat waves, contributing to a greater number of illnesses and deaths in the United States, according to international climate scientists.

Severe heat waves -- characterized by stagnant masses of warm air and consecutive nights with high minimum temperatures -- will intensify in the United States and Canada, according to the data on North America released Monday by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change." (SF Chronicle)

"Africa must adapt to soaring temperatures: UN scientists" - "African governments must urgently look at ways to adapt to effects of rising temperatures on the continent most vulnerable to climate change, authors of a United Nations report said Tuesday." (AFP)

Another reason to hope the globe warms? "Global Warming May Spur Wind Shear, Sap Hurricanes" - "MIAMI - Global warming could increase a climate phenomenon known as wind shear that inhibits Atlantic hurricanes, a potentially positive result of climate change, according to new research released on Tuesday." (Reuters) | A change in the wind (University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science) | Surprise: Global warming may curb hurricanes (Miami Herald) | Researchers face turbulence in hurricane debate (AP)

This is still only a virtual world study but the basic premise does appear sound. Unfortunately the enhanced greenhouse effect from increased atmospheric carbon dioxide appears far too small an influence to guarantee any change will be warmer and the globe retains an equal chance of the next change being a cooling.

British Parents Look to Stop Al Gore's ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ from Airing in Schools (News Busters)

21st Century snake oil pitch: "Britain Tells US Industry to Invest in 'Clean-Tech'" - "UNITED NATIONS - On the eve of the first UN Security Council debate on global warming, British Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett warned US businesses to invest in carbon-free technology or lose out to Europeans.

"Clean-tech is going to be a massive market" and the largest economic opportunity of the century, Beckett said in a speech on Monday to the BritishAmerican Business Inc. group in New York." (Reuters)

"Hill Brawl Over Climate Adaptation Policy Is Brewing" - "Long embraced by some conservative politicos as the most pragmatic of approaches to global warming, adaptation policy may still prove to be a difficult fight in Congress." (U.S. News & World Report)

"Why Schwarz is the new green" - "Arnie is fast overtaking Al Gore as the planet's foremost eco warrior. Should we buy it?" (Lucy Siegle, The Observer)

"Green Giant's Big Carbon Footprint" - "When President Jimmy Carter wanted Americans to conserve energy in 1979, he set an example by wearing a sweater and turning down the White House thermostat. Today, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger boasts that he is a world leader in the fight against global warming -- but his advocacy shouldn't keep him from flying in private jets or driving a Hummer." (Debra J. Saunders, Townhall)

"Beckett chairs UN climate debate" - "Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett justified the UN Security Council's first debate on global warming by linking the issue to security. Russia and China said that as an international security watchdog, the 15-member council was not the right place to debate climate change." (BBC)

"Climate change threatens security, UK tells UN" - "Britain has warned reluctant members of the United Nations that there are few greater threats to global security than climate change, delivering a stark message forecasting armed conflicts over scarce supplies of food, water and land." (The Guardian)

"There is now no doubt that global warming is a security threat to us all" - "The debate on climate change at the UN top table is a sign that the big powers are at last beginning to see sense." (Jonathan Freedland, The Guardian)

"CLIMATE CHANGE : Legitimacy of Security Council Meeting Challenged" - "UNITED NATIONS - The legitimacy of a much-ballyhooed Security Council meeting on climate change was challenged by developing nations who argued that the threat to the global environment is not a subject within the purview of the U.N.'s most powerful political body." (IPS)

"Carbon Cycle Modelling and the Residence Time of Natural and Anthropogenic CO2" - "by Tom Victor Segalstad

The three evidences of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), that the apparent contemporary atmospheric CO2 increase is anthropogenic, is discussed and rejected: CO2 measurements from ice cores; CO2 measurements in air; and carbon isotope data in conjunction with carbon cycle modelling. It is shown why the ice core method and its results must be rejected; and that current air CO2 measurements are not validated and their results subjectively “edited”. 

Further it is shown that carbon cycle modelling based on non-equilibrium models, remote from observed reality and chemical laws, made to fit non-representative data through the use of non-linear ocean evasion “buffer” correction factors constructed from a pre-conceived idea, constitute a circular argument and with no scientific validity. See Tom’s paper here and powerpoint presentation here." (ICECAP)

"Another New Paper That Documents That Landscape Change In The Amazon Is A First-Order Climate Forcing" - "Yet another excellent paper has appeared which documents the very significant role of landscape change on the climate system." (Climate Science)

Population-panicking Suzuki acolyte Bob Carr, at it again: "Carbon credit debate gets personal" - "INDIVIDUAL carbon rationing with penalties for those who exceeded their quotas was one of a number of radical measures that might be needed to tackle climate change, according to the former NSW premier, Bob Carr." (Sydney Morning Herald)

Speaking of useless things: The University of Chicago’s David Solomon crunches the numbers on Earth Hour.

From CO2 Science this week:

Science vs. Gore on Methane: Ought we to be as worried about methane emissions as the world's most famous climate alarmist says we should?

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from Iceberg Lake, Alaska, USA. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Range Expansion (Plants - North America: United States, Pacific Northwest): As the "twin evils" of the radical environmentalist movement (air temperature and CO 2 concentration) increased over the past century, how did earth's woody plants respond? We here review relevant data from the U.S. Pacific Northwest.

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO 2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Canola, Mountain Pine, Sour Orange, and Thale Cress.

Journal Reviews:
Heat Waves of Southern Quebec: 1941-2000: How have they changed over the course of six decades of dreaded global warming?

Snowpack and Streamflow Trends in the Central Andes: How have they varied over the past 55 years?

Little Ice Age Glacier Fluctuations in Bolivia: How do they compare with those of the Northern Hemisphere?

The Competing Effects of Elevated Ozone and Carbon Dioxide Concentrations on Insect Herbivore Performance: Which is good? Which is bad? And which one wins?

Nearly Two Decades of CO 2 Enrichment of Plants in a Chesapeake Bay Tidal Wetland: Updated results from the world's longest CO 2 enrichment study continue to show a strong positive C 3 -plant growth response, even in the face of low nitrogen availability.

Lewiston, ID Temperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Lewiston, ID. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Lewiston's mean annual temperature has cooled by 0.48 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (co2science.org)

"China's Rural Polluters Hazy on Kyoto Options" - "DUANSI MINE, China - Carbon brokers should be queueing up to dispose of the methane in Li Jianbing's coal mine. Instead, he lets thousands of dollars worth dissipate into the greyish air of northern China each day." (Reuters)

"Eurostar promises carbon-free travel" - "Eurostar, the high-speed rail service between London, Paris and Brussels, is set to become the world's first "carbon neutral" train operator.

The company announced yesterday that when the new Channel Tunnel Rail link is completed this November and Eurostar moves to its new terminus at St Pancras passengers will be able to travel without worrying about their carbon footprint. Where Eurostar cannot eliminate its own carbon emissions, it will buy carbon offsets, but only as a last resort and at no additional cost to passengers." (London Independent)

"Climate Fears, Costs Threaten Coal-Fired Power Plans" - "NEW YORK - When it comes to building more generating capacity, US power companies are in a quandary.

Increasing demand for electricity has prompted the industry to propose construction of more than 150 coal-fired plants. But rising development costs and the prospect of tighter environmental regulations could mean that most of those projects will not get past the drawing board.

Coal, which generates about half the power in the United States, is the nation's most abundant fuel and costs a fraction of cleaner-burning natural gas. It is also more economical and reliable than renewable energy sources such as wind and solar." (Reuters)

"Senators Seek to Cut US Gasoline Use, Save Energy" - "WASHINGTON - A bipartisan group of US senators introduced legislation on Tuesday to cut America's gasoline use by 20 percent over the next decade and also provide government loan guarantees to automakers and suppliers that churn out fuel-efficient vehicles." (Reuters)

"SOUTH AMERICA : Leaders Overcome Impasse on Ethanol" - "ISLA DE MARGARITA, Venezuela - The controversy over whether to put the accent on fossil fuels or biofuels was overcome by the presidents in the first South American energy summit with the assertion that the answer depends on each country's specific circumstances, and that the different national policies are complementary to each other, not contradictory." (IPS)

"Ethanol vehicles pose a significant risk to human health, study finds" - "Ethanol is widely touted as an eco-friendly, clean-burning fuel. But if every vehicle in the United States ran on fuel made primarily from ethanol instead of pure gasoline, the number of respiratory-related deaths and hospitalizations would likely increase, according to a new study by Stanford University atmospheric scientist Mark Z. Jacobson. His findings are published in the April 18 online edition of the journal Environmental Science & Technology (ES&T).

''Ethanol is being promoted as a clean and renewable fuel that will reduce global warming and air pollution,'' said Jacobson, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering. ''But our results show that a high blend of ethanol poses an equal or greater risk to public health than gasoline, which already causes significant health damage.'' (Stanford University)

"Big Biofuel Plant to be Built on Canadian Prairies" - "WINNIPEG, Manitoba - North America's biggest biofuel refinery will be built in central Alberta near the town of Innisfail, and could be producing fuels in the third quarter of 2008, the plant's developers said Tuesday." (Reuters)

"World now faces competition between food and fuel, expert warns" - "GLOBAL grain yields must rise sharply over the next 50 years to avoid food shortages as an increasingly rich population competes with biofuels for scarce resources, the head of the Scottish Agricultural College has said." (The Scotsman)

"'Only intensive farming' will feed Britain" - "Britain must continue to intensify its farming practices to meet soaring demand for cheap food and prevent shortages, a leading agricultural expert said yesterday. Demand for biofuels, booming economies of developing countries and climate change will put demand on food supplies that can only be met by intensive techniques, said Professor Bill McKelvey, head of the Scottish Agricultural College. Prices could soar and future generations in the UK may find they can no longer take plentiful food for granted." (The Guardian)

"Cancer tip -- Nanoparticles can damage DNA, increase cancer risk" - "LOS ANGELES -- Tissue studies indicate that nanoparticles, engineered materials about a billionth of a meter in size, could damage DNA and lead to cancer, according to research presented at the 2007 Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research." (American Association for Cancer Research)

"Argentine cow clones to produce insulin in milk" - "BUENOS AIRES: Argentine scientists say they have created four cloned and genetically modified calves capable of producing human insulin in their milk, a step they said could cut the cost of treating diabetes." (Reuters)

"47pc would grow GM forage crops – survey" - "AROUND half of livestock farmers in this country would be prepared to grow genetically modified forage crops, according to a British Grassland Society survey.

The survey of society members found that 47 per cent would grow GM crops, 37 per cent ‘were not convinced but could be persuaded’ and 16 per cent were vehemently against the idea.

“We were surprised that only one-in-eight grassland farmers responding said they would never grow GM forage crops,” said Jessica Buss, society director of the society.

“More than half of these declared they were organic producers, and perhaps this indicates why they would be against such new technology.” (Farmer's Guardian)

April 17, 2007

Ross Gelbspan still not a Pulitzer winner... The winners of the Pulitzer Prizer were announced yesterday and -- not surprisingly -- global warming hyseric Ross Gelbspan is still not a Pulitzer winner despite his past claims to the contrary. Maybe next year, Ross! If it's any consolation, JunkScience.com is happy to award you the Spew-litzer Prize for your climate clamoring.

"Nail Polish, Saran Wrap and Birth Defects" - "FOX 9 Twin Cities produces a really lousy story." (Trevor Butterworth, STATS)

"The Don Imuses of the Greens" - "Don Imus’s firing for remarks about the Rutgers’s women’s basketball team has opened a new debate about what comments in public discourse are forgivable. Many are pointing out that rappers and others have said much worse and were not drummed out of public life.

But Imus’s insensitive remarks pale especially in comparison to disparaging comments and cruel recommendations made time and again by leaders of environmental groups.

Here are some outrageous and racist comments by greens, many of whom are considered “mainstream” and revered by the media. These statements are compiled and documented in my book "Eco-Freaks: Environmentalism Is Hazardous to Your Health."

See if you think anyone else, say a right-wing talk show host, could get away with making these cruel and disparaging statements." (John Berlau, Human Events)

"20-year study shows significant rise in childhood obesity, especially among girls" - "Four-year-old girls are six times more likely to have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of more than 30 than they were 20 years ago and ten-year-olds are five times more likely, according to research published in the April issue of Acta Paediactrica.

Swedish researchers who studied BMI figures for more than a thousand children over two decades discovered that obesity levels had risen significantly among younger children, but that levels were much more constant among teenagers included in the research.

They also found that young girls were much more likely to be overweight or obese than boys." (Blackwell Publishing Ltd.)

"Adding years to your life" - "Several stories in the news today will enable us to give our synapses a workout. Another doctor on television has written his own anti-aging book." (Junkfood Science)

"TV dinner nostalgia" - "A fascinating observation by a Cambridge University archaeology professor in today’s paper reminds us of how similar humans are through the ages. People have probably always held romantic notions about what things must have been like in the “old days” and believe everything with the current generation means the demise of all that is good. It’s easy to forget to look back through history to get the big picture. So, just for fun, let’s do." (Junkfood Science)

"Eating cured meats frequently can lead to lower lung function and potential COPD" - "Frequent consumption of cured meats results in lower lung function test scores and increases the odds of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), according to a large cross-sectional survey of adults in the U.S." (American Thoracic Society)

RR < 2.0 and consumption also indicative of tobacco use, lower socio-economic status...

Nothing new under the sun: "Guesser Gets Weather Right (Feb, 1932)" - "So, basically they are saying that long term weather prediction methodology is so bad that randomly guessing works better?" (Modern Mechanix)

"Met Office forecast for Summer 2007" - "The latest seasonal forecast from the Met Office issued today, reveals that this summer is, yet again, likely to be warmer than normal.

Following the trend set throughout 2006 and the first part of 2007, seasonal forecasters say there is a high probability that summer temperature will exceed the 1971-2000 long-term average of 14.1 °C.

They also suggest the chances of temperatures similar to those experienced in 2003 and 2006 are around 1 in 8.

The forecast for rainfall is less certain, and currently there are no indications of an increased risk of a particularly dry or particularly wet summer." (UK Met Office)

"East Coast Storm Breaks Rainfall Records" - "A rare spring northeaster masquerading as a classic winter storm roared up the coast and across the New York region and the Northeast yesterday with bullying winds and torrential rains that flooded shorelines and rivers, disrupted travel, brought down power lines and washed out Sunday plans for millions of people." (New York Times)

"Dusty Hurricanes" - "Throw gasoline on a fire, and the flames swell to a raging inferno. Throw dirt on a fire, and the flames suffocate. But what happens when you throw dirt on a hurricane? It's a serious question." (Science@NASA)

"Skeleton Of Sun's Atmosphere Reveals Its True Nature" - "The Sun's outer atmosphere or corona is incredibly complex, as shown in observations from space. It is also extremely hot, with a temperature of over a million degrees by comparison with that of the Sun's surface of only 6000 degrees. Scientists have now made a major breakthrough in understanding this complexity by studying the ‘skeleton’ of the magnetic field." (Royal Astronomical Society)

"From beneath Antarctica's Ross Sea, scientists retrieve pristine record of the continent's climate cycles" - "Frequent climate fluctuations on the world’s southernmost continent have been so extreme over the past 5 million years that Antarctica’s Ross Ice Shelf, a floating slab of ice the size of France, oscillated in size dramatically, and perhaps even disappeared for periods of time when the West Antarctic Ice Sheet may have been smaller, according to scientists engaged in an unprecedented international geologic drilling project." (Northern Illinois University)

"Researchers setting up observatories to examine changes under the Arctic ice" - "Researchers from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are venturing this month to the North Pole to deploy instruments that will make year-round observations of the water beneath the Arctic ice cap. Scientists will investigate how the waters in the upper layers of the Arctic Ocean—which insulate surface ice from warmer, deeper waters—are changing from season to season and year to year as global climate fluctuates." (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

"The Oceans Role in Climate Change" (.pdf) - "Dr William Gray has discussed the importance of the Multidecadal Oscilltion in both the tropical storm activity and global warming. Dr James Hansen et al., 1998 wrote about the importance of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation in persisting regional patterns of coolness in the southeastern United States and warmth in the west. In the following paper, I will show how the oscillations in the two oceans affect global temperature cycles and how irregular clustering of volcanic activity modulates the effects (enhancing or temporarily reversing). The numbers suggest the ocean multidecadal cycles are not given the respect they deserve in climate change." (Joseph D’Aleo, ICECAP)

"Climate change could trigger 'boom and bust' population cycles leading to extinction" - "Climate change could trigger "boom and bust" population cycles that make animal species more vulnerable to extinction, according to Christopher C. Wilmers, an assistant professor of environmental studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz." (University of Chicago)

"Global Warming Could Spur 21st Century Conflicts" - "OSLO - Droughts, floods and rising seas linked to global warming could spur conflicts in coming decades, experts said on Monday, the eve of a first UN Security Council debate on climate change." (Reuters)

Even boogeyman stories have consequences: "Climate Change Scenarios Scare, and Motivate, Kids" - "The boy has drawn, in his third-grade class, a global warming timeline that is his equivalent of the mushroom cloud.

"That's the Earth now," the 9-year-old says, pointing to a dark shape at the bottom. "And then," he says, tracing the progressively lighter stripes across the page, "it's just starting to fade away."

Alex Hendel of Arlington County is talking about the end of life on our beleaguered planet. Looking up to make sure his mother is following along, he taps the final stripe, which is so sparsely dotted it is almost invisible. "In 20 years," he pronounces, "there's no oxygen." Then, to dramatize the point, he collapses, "dead," to the floor.

For many children and young adults, global warming is the atomic bomb of today. Fears of an environmental crisis are defining their generation in ways that the Depression, World War II, Vietnam and the Cold War's lingering "War Games" etched souls in the 20th century.

Parents say they're searching for "productive" outlets for their 8-year-olds' obsessions with dying polar bears. Teachers say enrollment in high school and college environmental studies classes is doubling year after year. And psychologists say they're seeing an increasing number of young patients preoccupied by a climactic Armageddon." (Washington Post)

Um... no! "Don't argue about climate change, plan for it" - "Internecine scientific struggles over defining and measuring global climate change are obscuring more important questions about the policy dimensions of such change. Exacerbating the problem are ostrichlike government attitudes toward climate change that fail to focus attention on the more serious challenges facing society.

Individuals, organizations and governments can deny or promote interminably the premise that humans are significantly implicated in the climate changes we are now experiencing. However, the reality is that humans will be affected by climate change in significant ways, whoever or whatever is determined to be the culprit." (Chicago Sun-Times)

The recent release of WGII's SPM highlights the problems with the whole 'global warming/climate change' farce. The basis for the whole thing are really bad models generating pretend scenarios for future climate states (basically big weather forecasting models run for longer periods busily magnifying their errors) and continues with equally bad models accepting, as their input, the flawed output of climate models. From here, despite ridiculously assuming zero technological and developmental advance or even modest wealth increase in developing countries, 'predictions' of future impacts are made. Worse, there is the implicit assumption that all effects of any change in climate are negative (i.e., a warmer wetter world will bring no advantage to anyone but least developed regions will suffer disproportionate flood/drought or other adverse events). Do you really believe everything bad and nothing good will come of every little divergence from past average? Really? Think for a moment about the changes you see during the course of every year -- the higher the latitude the greater variation you see (very little in the tropics through more than 50 K in high latitudes).

The fanciful twaddle being bandied about over 'climate change risks' is certainly not worth planning for, even if it could be. In reality the greatest climate change risk currently faced by humanity is listening and reacting to climate change hysterics -- following their prescriptions will harm humanity, far more so than any realistically envisioned imminent change in the planet's climate.

"Doubting doomsday" - "Our global-warming debate is contentious enough as it is. The last thing we need is to be disparaging the integrity of every scientist who takes a strong stand either way. Tempting though it may be to think otherwise, not every true believer is a scoundrel -- and not every heretic is a shill." (Jeff Jacoby, Boston Globe)

How naïve can you get? "China’s Signals on Warming" - "Two factors are crucial to the success of any global system to reduce greenhouse gases. One is American leadership; the other is China’s full participation. Despite President Bush’s diffidence, there has been mounting pressure for the United States to assume a more aggressive role from mayors, governors, some in Congress and, lately, even the Supreme Court. And now there are some modestly encouraging signs from China." (New York Times)

China is keen to exploit Western guilt and stupidity to have someone, anyone else underwrite China's burgeoning power needs -- if 'global warming' delivers an excuse plausible at least to dopey Westerners then it'll do.

"China Rejects Caps, Aims to Cut 'Carbon Intensity'" - "BEIJING - China aims to nearly halve by 2020 the amount of greenhouse gases it emits for each dollar of its economy, but will reject strict caps for decades, a copy of a national global warming assessment seen by Reuters shows." (Reuters)

"Climate change is not a global crisis – that is the problem" - "Here is another inconvenient truth. Global warming is good news for parts of the world. This is truly awkward. A “planetary emergency” that affected everyone equally would be much easier to tackle. However, climate change that hurts some places but helps others opens the way for dangerous political conflicts." (Gideon Rachman, Financial Times)

"More proof of global warming?" - "Amateurs who began collecting data on fungi in the 1950s started a process that is helping us to understand climate change, reports Roger Highfield." (London Telegraph)

"Live Earth: change the record" - "The anti-development message of the Al Gore-inspired gig planned for July is nothing to sing and dance about." (Rob Lyons, sp!ked)

"Methane Matters" - "We all know the story – humans are burning fossil fuels, greenhouse gases are increasing in atmospheric concentration at an alarming rate, the temperature of the earth is soaring upward, the ecosystems are struggling to cope with all the related changes, and if we don’t act now, we will soon push the entire system past the dreaded tipping point. We at World Climate Report have presented evidence from a growing number of scientific papers that challenge this simple but highly popularized and publicized global warming story. Now another recent paper calls into question one of the most basic assumption – the article questions whether the second most important greenhouse gas, namely methane, is continuing to increase in atmospheric concentration." (WCR)

Wood Burning As A CO2 Emission Reduction Concept! Is This A Serious Proposal? (Climate Science)

What? "Sheryl Crow goes back to school to save world" - "NEW YORK - Sheryl Crow has headed back to school to talk with college students about the growing problem of global warming.

"There have been several really bad shark attacks in the last three years up on the Panhandle, which is where our house is," she told Billboard.com." (Billboard)

"Global Warming, Global Stifling" - "The planet has a problem caused by too much hot air." (Gary Jason, Liberty)

"Blair and Merkel lean on Bush to join battle against climate change" - "President George Bush is coming under unprecedented pressure from Tony Blair and the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, to agree to tough new international measures to stop global warming accelerating out of control." (London Independent)

"US 1990-2005 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Up 16 Pct" - "WASHINGTON - The Environmental Protection Agency said Monday US greenhouse gas emissions linked to global warming increased 16 percent over a 15-year period. The report found that emissions did not rise between 1990 and 2005 as much as the US economy, which grew 55 percent during the same period. Overall US emissions in 2005, the most recent year examined, increased by less than 1 percent from the year before to the equivalent of 7,260 million metric tons of carbon dioxide." (Reuters)

"EPA Chief Says Climate Policy Working" - "WASHINGTON - The head of the Environmental Protection Agency said Monday the growth of greenhouse gases by less than 1 percent in 2005 shows the administration's program to address global warming ``is delivering real results.'' (AP)

"Warming pols should cool it" - "Today, at the urging of Britain, the United Nation's Security Council will, for the first time, take up the challenge of global warming. While some people may see hope in this development, I cringe at the thought." (H. Sterling Burnett, Washington Times)

"EU Demands Hungary Slash its 2008-12 Emissions Cap" - "BRUSSELS - The European Commission told Hungary on Monday to slash its proposed cap for industrial carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in 2008-2012 by more than 12 percent, making it the 16th country to face a cut by Brussels." (Reuters)

"Supreme bow to global warming" - "The path of the law is informed not by unchanging legal principles but by intellectual fads, orthodoxies or prejudices. This first law of jurisprudence was confirmed by the United States Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency (April 2), which lacerated constitutional rules for initiating litigation to enable a judicial airing of global-warming alarms that should be sounded in popularly elected political branches." (Bruce Fein, Washington Times)

When 2 hysterias collide: "Fluorescent Bulb Break Creates Costly Hassle" - "PROSPECT — It was just like any other Tuesday.

On March 13, Brandy Bridges was installing some of the two dozen CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) bulbs she had purchased in an attempt to save money on her energy bill.

One month later, though, Bridges is paying much more than she had ever expected to.

On that Tuesday, Bridges was installing one of the spiral-shaped light bulbs in her 7-year-old daughter’s bedroom. Suddenly, the bulb plummeted to the floor, breaking on the shag carpet.

Bridges, who was wary of the dangers of cleaning up a fluorescent bulb, called The Home Depot where she purchased them. She was told that the bulbs had mercury in them and that she should not vacuum the area where the bulb had broken. Bridges was directed to call the Poison Control hotline.

Poison Control directed her to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Environmental Protection." (Ellsworth American)

"Experts' dim view of green light bulb" - "THE cover story of this month's edition of Silicon Chip magazine is a comprehensive bagging of the Federal Government's plan to replace incandescent light bulbs with more efficient compact fluorescents (CFLs).

As publisher Leo Simpson points out, most domestic lighting use is at night, which means it is "merely using the 'spinning reserve' of our base-loaded power stations.

"You could switch all the lights off ... and the base-load power stations would still be spinning away, using just as much coal," he says.

In a six-page analysis, Silicon Chip , the bible for electrical engineers, identifies drawbacks such as the fact that a CFL light bulb "takes about 10 to 15 minutes to achieve full brilliance"; doesn't last long when used for frequent short periods; can't be used with a dimmer switch; and can cause electrical and infra-red interference to the point where "CFLs can completely obliterate [radio] reception in rural areas" - and if you have a "CFL in the same room as your TV or hi-fi system, the infra-red remote control may not work at all".

Heed the geeks." (Miranda Divine, Sydney Morning Herald)

"Incandescent Bans and Dim Bulbs" - "At some level all of this incandescent light bulb ban stuff is a bit ludicrous. If you look at the light bulb as an historian of technology, you probably think pretty quickly about the switch from whale oil to kerosene as a lighting fuel source in the mid-19th century. In that case the switch happened because the discovery of oil in Pennsylvania created a more ready supply of kerosene, combined with the fact that kerosene gave a cleaner, brighter light with less smell (plus the price of whale oil had been rising dramatically, as whale hunting depleted the whale population). But here's the problem: although it was obviously a superior lighting fuel source choice, kerosene didn't eliminate whale oil from the market very quickly, because you couldn't use kerosene in whale oil lamps, and you couldn't retrofit whale oil lamps to take kerosene. Someone had to invent a kerosene lamp. And once invented, all of those old whale oil lamps had to be replaced. The two technologies were complements, and mass proliferation of one required mass proliferation of the other." (Knowledge Problem)

"[Australian Broadcasting Corp.] scaremongering on the environment" - "NEWSFLASH: Federal Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull says he can't guarantee the Great Barrier Reef will still be here in 20 years.

That's how our ABC breathlessly reported Turnbull's response to the recycled report from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

For the record, Turnbull also refuses to guarantee the world will not be under attack from an intergalactic force or threatened by any asteroids streaking toward it in 2027.

But your ABC hasn't got around to reporting his position on those eventualities because intergalactic forces and asteroid attacks are not part of its agenda. Yet." (Piers Akerman, Daily Telegraph)

"Australia: Carbon 'black market' emerges" - "GOVERNMENT indecision over how to tackle climate change has led to the emergence of a "black market" in carbon credits in Australia.

Australia's largest companies are buying carbon credits outside the boundaries of existing government schemes, creating a "behind the scenes" market in emissions trading, Minter Ellison senior associate Scott Singleton will tell the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association conference in Adelaide today.

The outing of the speculative green market comes as a federal government task group on emissions trading prepares to report its findings to the Prime Minister." (Herald Sun)

"Australia: PM says no to premiers on climate change" - "The rift over how to tackle climate change widened today with Prime Minister John Howard refusing to back a plan by state premiers to set up a national carbon emission trading scheme.

At the end of their annual Council of Australian Governments meeting, Mr Howard told a news conference he would "put jobs and economic opportunity ahead of targets" on greenhouse gas reductions." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"Insurance risk-modeling specialist appoints climate change scientist" - "Risk Management Solutions, which provides insurers and others with catastrophic-risk-management products and services, said Thursday it has taken another step to help prepare for the ramifications of global warming or climate change, appointing a climate-change expert to serve as its principal future-climate scientist." (Sacramento Business Journal)

"Climate research starved of funding" - "In a recent editorial, the Star made the case that a major research effort is needed to determine how global warming will affect the various regions of Canada in order for Ottawa ultimately to develop a national strategy to deal with the potentially devastating effects of climate change.

Yet last week, the Star reported that Canada's most important funding agency for climate research has run out of money." (Toronto Star)

"Greenpeace Urges India to Ban the Bulb" - "NEW DELHI - India must ban incandescent light bulbs in favour of more energy efficient light sources, environmental group Greenpeace said on Monday, adding the ban would cut the nation's greenhouse gas emissions by four percent." (Reuters)

"EU Confirms to Propose Ships Join Emissions Trade" - "BRUSSELS - The European Commission confirmed on Monday it will propose adding shipping companies to the European Union emissions trading scheme, targeting another emitter of greenhouse gases from the transport industry." (Reuters)

"Trade-off looms for arid US regions: water or power?" - "Water consumed by electric utilities could account for up to 60 percent of all nonfarm water used in the US by 2030." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"MALI : Wood - The Gift That Can't Keep on Giving" - "BAMAKO - Year by year, the figures have increased relentlessly. While some 600,000 tonnes of wood were transported to the Malian capital of Bamako in 1994, according to official figures, 750,000 tonnes were sent in 1997. This year, the city is projected to consume 900,000 tonnes -- and the country as a whole, seven million tonnes." (IPS)

Why do it then? "Bottle returns to cost Toronto millions: Less glass to sell, same overhead for blue box program" - "Toronto stands to lose millions of dollars to a new deposit return program in Ontario that covers liquor store purchases, and officials are looking to the province to offset the loss." (Canadian Press)

"Russia Tries to Save Polar Bears With Legal Hunt" - "VANKAREM, Russia — Here on the frozen edge of the country’s Arctic expanse, where a changing climate has brought polar bears into greater contact with people, Russia has embraced a counterintuitive method of trying to preserve the creatures: hunting them, legally." (New York Times)

"Wild salmon win respite in US court" - "Federal judges threaten to breach dams if the government has no recovery plan." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Unless courts finally realize that people are more important than critters the only alternative would appear to be to get rid of the stupid law causing the conflict.

"Earth's dirty little secret: Slowly but surely we are skinning our planet" - "Throughout history civilizations expanded as they sought new soil to feed their populations, then ultimately fell as they wore out or lost the dirt they depended upon. When that happened, people moved on to fertile new ground and formed new civilizations." (University of Washington)

"Organic Earth Friendly-The Biggest Misperception in Agriculture" - "Earth Day is April 22, and you can bet there’ll be claims that organic crops are somehow ‘better’ for planet Earth than conventional or biotech crops. But it’s the biggest misperception in agriculture." (CGFI)

April 16, 2007

"The Method" - "These scientific works are also literature of a high order." (Opinion Journal)

Say what? "Are mobile phones wiping out our bees?" - "Scientists claim radiation from handsets are to blame for mysterious 'colony collapse' of bees." (London Independent)

"Panic of the Day: Cell Phones Kill Bees" - "There's an article on UK's The Independent website about a most unusual scientific theory. "Cell Phones kill bees." (Watt's Up with That?)

"News women can use" - "If you’re a woman who’s moved beyond menopause, you may be concerned about the pounds that have naturally crept on over the years. Well, you needn’t be. In fact, your natural, more zaftig shape appears to have notable benefits at this time in your life and be worth celebrating." (Junkfood Science)

"Baby fat fears" - "It should not be at all surprising that the incessant warnings about bad fat have been translated by young people, and plenty of adults, to mean that if it’s so important to eat low-fat and avoid even moderate intakes, then eating no fat at all must be even better. Just to be safe." (Junkfood Science)

"Where are the headlines?" - "MIA: News in every (or any) media outlet sharing the latest CDC report on our nation’s babies. Might it be because the concerns it points to are not the politically correct ones?" (Junkfood Science)

"News too troubling to stomach" - "This news is so disturbing that I waited until it was confirmed in several reports before sharing it. Last Saturday, we looked at the popularity of exploiting and mocking fat children for entertainment on reality show fat camps, with an especially surreal and potentially harmful example being set by an upcoming show featuring Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie as weight loss camp counselors. But there’s more..." (Junkfood Science)

Sachs, again: "We have to know when to stop" - "Jeffrey Sachs, the world’s most influential economist, tells David Smith there has to be a global conversation about population growth." (Sunday Times)

Sachs should get rid of those old Ehrlich fantasies and lose the Club of Rome script.

"Dominic Lawson: Jeffrey Sachs is wrong once again: rising population isn't going to destroy the planet" - "Those who remember his Russian debacle are cynical about his plans to solve poverty in Africa." (London Independent)

The Crone... "Courts and Greens"  -"A little over four years ago, when the forces of deregulation were riding high, this page observed that the federal courts could turn out to be the last, best hope for slowing the Bush administration’s assault on the body of bipartisan environmental law established over the last four decades and, by extension, on the environment itself.

... seems to aspire to a name change, something along the lines of The Old Socialist or Green-Left Daily maybe. Regrettably the once-venerable publication cannot now seem to distinguish between misanthropy and sound environmental stewardship. Perhaps, in its dotage, The Gaia Dreamer might be more appropriate.

"How rainforest saviour put 1,000 out of work" - "THE Tory party donor and environmental philanthropist Johan Eliasch has been accused of “green colonialism” after allegedly consigning 1,000 people to poverty in his attempts to preserve the Amazon jungle." (Sunday Times)

"Biologist takes axe to the 'myth' of Wollemi" - "CLAIMS that a group of pine trees discovered in NSW date back to the time of the dinosaurs have been challenged by a leading biologist who insists the truth has been lost in the frantic rush for headlines." (The Australian)

VIDEO: Back to basics with an oldie but goodie: Green_House_Conspiracy This documentary is a good companion to the latest documentary, "The Great Global Warming Swindle" recently shown on CH 4 UK and is available on Google video. The hoax of Global Warming / Green House was exposed 17 years ago by CH 4 UK in this documentary entitled Green House Conspiracy. (Google Video)

"Forum: Debating Climate Change Fears" - "Lindzen responds to critics of his views on global warming." (Newsweek)

Gore effect? "Cold, rain cuts short global warming rally" - "More than two dozen demonstrators braved cold, wet weather Saturday in Reno to attend a rally designed to draw attention to global warming." (Associated Press)

"Mainers rally to curb carbon emissions" - "The first event of the day began around 4 a.m. when five students and one staff member left College of the Atlantic and hiked up the snow-covered auto road for a sunrise demonstration atop Cadillac Mountain.

The summit was fogged in and windy, with visibility limited to 100 feet, but the hikers didn't let the conditions dampen their spirits. They posed with homemade signs demanding cuts in carbon emissions and let loose with a cheer that went, "Oooh, it's hot in here, there's too much carbon in the atmosphere." (Associated Press.)

Lovely snow pics: "A regional rally for a global problem: Step It Up 2007 events draw attention to changes brought by warmer climate" - "WILMINGTON -- A mix of snow and fog at the foot of the Whiteface Mountain toll road made it a white-on-white world Saturday as 15 people -- and two dogs -- started the 2,500-foot ascent to the top. The group was skiing up the state's fifth-highest peak -- which was wrapped in early spring snow -- to call attention to the damage that global warming could bring to the Adirondacks." (Times Union)

What curious critters people are... "22 inches: record snowfall for April, says weather service" - "GAYLORD — April showers of snow rather than rain have made even local weather-watchers tired of the recent rut of wintry conditions. “We’re sick of this stuff,” said Mike Cellitti, meteorologist with the National Weather Service (NWS) in Gaylord. “We’re waiting, as other people are, for warmer temperatures to move in.” (Herald Times)

... not cold enough, not warm enough, not enough snow, too much snow...

"With snow pack at record level, B.C. braced for spring floods" - "Across British Columbia, cities are grasping at the $33-million lifeline tossed by the provincial government to shore up their dikes and waterways against the possibility this year's spring thaw will result in heavy flooding. By Apr. 1, the last date for an official measure of the snow pack around the province, levels in some areas were as much as 160 per cent above normal. "The large snow accumulation does suggest that we have above-average flood potential," says Markus Schnorbus, a hydrologic modeling scientist with the Ministry of the Environment." (CP)

"What if Global Warming Melted All Ice Worldwide?" - "What If All the Ice Melts?" Myths and Realities is an article which features 3D computer generated images of what the globe would look like if all of the ice (both land and sea) on the planet melted, leading to a sealevel rise of around 66 meters.

The change shown in global dry land goes from about 132 million sq. kilometers to 128 million, and the analysis seems sound, making this article a sober and very useful counter to some of the more hysterical claims which has been circulated in relation to global warming." (Watt's Up With That?)

"The Correction To The Lyman Et Al 2006 Paper Is Available" - "The correction to the Lyman et al paper “Recent cooling of the upper ocean” is available. It is “Correction to ‘Recent Cooling of the Upper Ocean’” by Josh K. Willis, John M. Lyman, Gregory C. Johnson and John Gilson. While this correction eliminates the cooling that they reported in the 2006 paper, the warming of the 1990s and very early 2000s has not continued. This absence of global ocean warming (which is consistent with the absence of a significant global average sea surface temperature anomaly trend for the last few years) is a challenge to the modelers and to the conclusions of the IPCC with respect to the ability to skillfully predict global warming. Indeed, it appears that with respect to the challenge on Climate Science of A Litmus Test For Global Warming - A Much Overdue Requirement, the models have failed so far." (Climate Science)

"New Paper On The Assessment of Tropospheric Temperature Trends By The University of Alabama Research Group" - "A new article has appeared Christy J. R., W. B. Norris, R. W. Spencer, J. J. Hnilo (2007), Tropospheric temperature change since 1979 from tropical radiosonde and satellite measurements, J. Geophys. Res., 112, D06102, doi:10.1029/2005JD006881 which updates the assessment of tropical tropospheric temperature trends." (Climate Science)

"In a Filmdom Premiere, a Foe for Gore" - "SAN FRANCISCO, April 13 — The screening here on Thursday night had many elements of a classic film-world shindig. There were gift bags and television cameras, cold cocktails and hot popcorn. Ushers showed V.I.P.’s to their seats, and local politicos rubbed shoulders with the movie’s backers and flacks.

In fact, according to the movie’s star, Steven F. Hayward, there was only one thing missing from what could have otherwise been a typical Hollywood opening: liberals." (New York Times)

"Local CO2 levels - where is the data?" - "Regular readers will remember that I highlighted Ernst-Georg Beck's paper and data on 180 Years of atmospheric CO2 Gas Analysis by Chemical Methods which suggested that past CO2 levels varied and were higher than the "official" figures and that the historical figures have been suppressed.

Critics such as Eli Rabett point out :Coby Beck's A Few Things Illconsidered where Coby dealt with Diplom Beck's complete misreading of early CO2 mixing ratio records. If you don't want to go read either post, the measurements were real, but they also were about as irrelevant as measuring CO2 at the top of a smokestack and thinking that it would be representative of the atmosphere. If that does not make sense for you, go read the posts or Charles Keeling's history of the Mauna Loa CO2 measurements." (An Englishman's Castle)

"The Past and Future of Climate by David Archibald" - "Link to 600 kb 19 page pdf file of David’s provocative and original new paper which says we are coming into a weaker solar cycle and that a cooler climate is likely in decades ahead. David also explains that the Greenhouse effect due to carbon dioxide is miniscule, as does the 1998 paper by Sherwood Idso." (Errors in IPCC climate science)

"UK to raise climate talks as security council issue" - "The British government will make a concerted effort this week to push climate change up the global agenda when it raises the subject for the first time within the UN security council." (The Guardian)

"Paying to absolve the sin of emissions" - "Consumers snapping up carbon credits to allay their guilt over greenhouse gases." (SF Chronicle)

"An Inconvenient Tree" - "A report that just came online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences should make warm reading for Al Gore. The former next president, like many black-clad greens gracing the cover of Vanity Fair, relies on firms that promise to plant trees to offset their clients' fuel-intensive lifestyles, allowing the affluent to ignore their effluence and claim to be CO2 free. Mr. Gore also points to windmills and other energy alternatives when pleading carbon-neutral to charges his jet-setting contributes to global warming.

But where do Mr. Gore's green woodlands grow? Canada? Scotland? Patagonia? Alaska? Siberia? Does he really know? Carbon offsets are sold by the ton, not by the acre, and don't come with return addresses.

He'd better find out -- before Earth Day. The research reported by Govindasamy Bala of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and colleagues at the Carnegie Institution's Department of Global Ecology compared the climate effects of planting and clearing forests at latitudes high and low. Their computer simulations yielded some disturbing results." (Wall Street Journal)

"Kyoto holdouts should go green, governor says" - "Asked about whether environmentally minded politicians should be held accountable for the large cars and private planes they use, Schwarzenegger suggested those details should be of little consequence if the politicians are working toward a larger good." (Sacramento Bee)

"How the Media Spread Gore's Propaganda" - "In May [2006], our nation was exposed to perhaps one of the slickest science propaganda films of all time: former Vice President Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth. In addition to having the backing of Paramount Pictures to market this film, Gore had the full backing of the media, and leading the cheerleading charge was none other than the Associated Press." (Sen. James Inhofe, Heartland Institute) | Senator Challenges Media to Report Objectively (Environment & Climate News)

"“Lack of political will” to address climate crisis, claims Gore" - "Former United States vice president Al Gore claims there’s a lack of political will to solve the global climate crisis, including from United States. In an interview with Colombia’s main daily, El Tiempo, he blamed several US corporations on the confusion surrounding the controversy." (Mercopress)

"Aye Of Newt" - "Climate Change: It was supposed to be a debate with John Kerry on global warming, but the former House speaker ended up being just a carbon copy, joining those tilting at windmills." (IBD)

"A Convenient Untruth" - "For the obligatory "opposing view" on climate change, the media often turn to Myron Ebell, policy analyst, sound-bite artist, and oil-industry mouthpiece. While mainstream experts see global warming as a major crisis, the hotter it gets, the better Ebell likes it." (Vanity Fair)

"Prepare CO2 capture and storage now for greater environmental benefit later" - "CO2 capture and storage can make a major contribution to CO2 reduction in the Netherlands. By the mid-21st century 80 to 110 million tonnes of CO2 per year could be avoided in the sectors energy, industry and transport. This is half of the current CO2 emission. Moreover, this can be realised against acceptable costs concludes Dutch researcher Kay Damen." (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research)

"Industry slams state emissions plan" - "A STATE-BASED emissions trading scheme has been rejected by business chiefs and the energy supply industry on the grounds it would undermine the $75billion infrastructure investment needed to deliver lower emissions and would isolate Australia from future global trading regimes." (The Australian)

"CO2 storage in coal can be predicted better" - "CO2 storage in the ground is being considered increasingly more often in order to realise the climate and energy objectives. Dutch researcher Saikat Mazumder made it possible to better predict routes of the 'underground highways' along which gasses like carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) will move. Moreover, coal was found to be highly suitable for filtering carbon dioxide out of waste gasses and storing it." (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research)

"Developing States Must Help Curb Emissions - World Bank" - "WASHINGTON - Some developing countries, rapidly catching up to the industrialized world in greenhouse gas emissions, must take more responsibility for the output and act to curb it, the World Bank's chief economist said Sunday." (Reuters)

Waste: "Ministers aim to turn every secondary school 'green'" - "Every new secondary school will be "green" under a radical initiative being planned by the Government. The Education Secretary, Alan Johnson, has won £100m from Chancellor Gordon Brown's comprehensive spending review to ensure all new secondary schools are designed to be carbon neutral or at the very least substantially reduce carbon emissions." (London Independent)

Oh boy... "Wanna bet on global warming? You can" - "NORFOLK, Va. - Think global warming will raise the oceans enough to submerge Cape Hatteras? Want to bet on it? An online gambling service has started taking bets on global warming, including whether it can submerge some of the East Coast's top vacation spots. The odds that Virginia's Cape Henry will be under water by 2015 — 200-to-1 at BetUs.com. Its odds for Cape Hatteras flooding by the same date — 300-to-1." (AP)

"Nuclear issue muddies energy policy" - "New objectives for energy efficiency and renewables are expected to be set out in the energy white paper next month, as the government launches its next package of measures to cut carbon di-oxide emissions from businesses and consumers. But the government will be unable to make a clear commitment to what was to have been the heart of the policy: the framework for new nuclear power stations to encourage the private sector to invest." (Financial Times)

"The burning issue" - "A single chimney at Yorkshire's Drax power station pours out more pollution than entire countries. The company prides itself on its cleanliness; campaigners want the plant closed. John Harris reports from the frontline of the global warming battle." (The Guardian)

"Climate expert urges dropping clean coal" - "A CLIMATE change expert has urged Australia to step away from the development of clean coal technology for power generation in favour of natural gas and nuclear energy." (AAP)

"Global emissions trading shaping up as airlines' greenhouse solution" - "The world's airline industry may have only one way to escape the surge of enthusiasm to punish its carbon dioxide emissions with taxes or even regulatory limits on air travel, and that's a global emissions trading arrangement that is probably years away from implementation." (Aviation week)

A solution desperately searching for a problem...

"The Meat Tax" - "Energy Policy: Those who want to end global warming and our reliance on foreign oil often propose a massive "carbon tax" to make crude less appealing. Don't look now, but you're already paying it." (IBD)

"Excellent prospects for South American soybean farmers" - "The international soybean market, the main crop in Argentina and Brazil, is showing excellent prospects for South American farmers reports Oil World a reputed publication from the industry. According to the magazine soybean world demand will continue to expand, pushed by China, while supply will see a significant contraction since many United States farmers are switching to corn, convinced that the production of ethanol will be more profitable than the oil business. In this context the price of soybeans is forecasted to keep surging according to Oil World." (Mercopress)

"Green-fuel craze eating into supplies" - "Just about everything in your fridge is tied to the price of corn, Dana Flavelle writes." (Toronto Star)

Ever more absurd... "US-Brazil Biofuel Plan Will Condemn 3 Billion People to Death, Says Fidel" - "In his first two articles in the Cuban Communist Party's newspaper, Granma, since becoming ill last year, President Fidel Castro lashed out at the recently signed ethanol deal between Brazil and the US. In an April 3 article he described it as "the internationalization of genocide." (Green Left Weekly)

... we don't think much of the biofuel nonsense either but this is simply too ridiculous for words.

"NGOs trying to get ban on palm oil" - "KUCHING: The state Agriculture Department has refuted a claim by European-based non-governmental organisations that oil palm plantations on peat soil produce excessive carbon dioxide and contribute to global warming.

“We have data to prove that the allegations are false. Our research has shown that peat soil produces three times less than the normal emission of gas from other soils,” said Dr Lulie Melling, a senior research officer at the department.

She said the NGOs had in their recent reports tried to influence the United Nations and the European Union to ban the purchase of palm oil sourced from plantations on peat soil." (The Star)

"Running On Empty? Not Yet" - "Energy: The theory that oil supplies have peaked and are on their way down has made more than a few Americans nervous. They should relax. A new study confirms that the market, if left alone, will provide for decades." (IBD)

"Conventional Wisdom Regarding Oil Origins May Be Wrong" - "Review of Black Gold Stranglehold: The Myth of Scarcity and the Politics of Oil

In 1956, while studying petroleum engineering at Princeton University, I read a statement by Vladimir Porfir’yev, a prominent Russian geologist, who said, “The overwhelming preponderance of geological evidence compels the conclusion that crude oil and natural gas have no intrinsic connection with biological matter originating near the surface of the Earth. They are primordial materials which have been erupted from great depth.” (Heartland Institute)

"Too much information: those ethical labels explained" - "Fairtrade, organic, locally sourced and now low-carbon... our foods carry more labels than ever before. But what do they all mean – and which can we trust? Meg Carter offers an easily digestible guide." (Belfast Telegraph)

What do they mean? Short answer: nothing useful. Slightly longer answer: caution you're about to be ripped off paying more for often inferior produce.

"Research on grey mould offers possible breakthrough in tomato cultivation" - "Tomato growers are likely to soon be able to cultivate new tomato varieties without having to use pesticides against grey mould (Botrytis cinerea). This is the conclusion of the STW-sponsored thesis by Richard Finkers from Wageningen University, with which he hopes to earn his doctorate on 3 April 2007. Finkers designed highly efficient methods whereby tomato varieties can be resistant to grey mould. The leading company De Ruiter Seeds is already applying these methods in its breeding programme." (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research)

"Scientists find rice gene for grain size and yield" - "[BEIJING] Chinese scientists have identified and cloned a rice gene that influences rice grain weight and yield, which could help scientists develop higher yielding varieties of the world's most important food crop.

Little is known about the genetic mechanisms that determine yield and seed weight in plants, despite tremendous efforts by agricultural scientists in the past decade." (SciDev.Net)

"Discovery helps wheat survive salt" - "It may not be quite as salt-loving as a mangrove, but scientists have discovered that wheat has more in common with the coastal dweller than anyone realised. The Molecular Plant Breeding CRC’s Dr Yusuf Genc has found that different varieties of wheat have different ways of dealing with salinity. The research has implications for cereal breeders, who have long sought to breed varieties that are resistant to salinity." (Molecular Plant Breeding CRC)

"Plight of the Bumblebee: Are biotech crops killing America's bees?" - "Beekeepers in at least 24 states are reporting a huge number of empty honeybee hives this spring. Strangely, few dead bees are being found in the hives, so it appears that the hives are empty because bees are not returning from foraging. Since honeybees are the hard working pollinators of a lot of American crops, this is really bad news. But the cause for what is being called "colony collapse disorder" (CCD) is not at all clear." (Ronald Bailey, Reason)

April 13, 2007

"Can't See the Warming for the Trees" - "If you need further evidence that hysteria is outpacing science in the global warming debate, consider the study published this week about Northern Hemisphere forests actually causing significant global warming." (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

"A New Paper - “Climate change In Amazonia Caused By Soybean Cropland Expansion" - "In Pielke Sr., R.A., 2005: Land use and climate change. Science, 310, 1625-1626. I wrote “Change and variability in land use by humans and the resulting alterations in surface features are major but poorly recognized drivers of long-term global climate patterns …Along with the diverse influences of aerosols on climate these spatially heterogeneous land use effects may be at least as important in altering the weather as changes in climate patterns associated with greenhouse gases…”

A new paper which I was alerted to by John Fleck (thanks!), provides a particularly effective demonstration of this conclusion." (Climate Science)

"Is Climatology a Science?" - "I was very surprised to wake up a few days ago to discover three inches of snow on the ground -- in Virginia, in April, while our lilacs were blooming.

Must be that global warming.

It was a perfect concretization of a wisecrack that's been going around for years: we're supposed to believe that climatologists can predict the weather for the whole globe a century from now -- when they still can't predict the local weather for tomorrow." (Robert Tracinski, Real Clear Politics)

"Re-Brand Global Warming as Economic Woe - UN Draft" - "OSLO - A fight against global warming could work better if viewed as part of the world's economic problems and not a purely environmental headache, a draft United Nations report says." (Reuters)

"The Global Warming Jihad" - "In my college days, I was introduced to a book, written in 1841 by Charles Mackay. Titled Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds, it remains a worthwhile chronicle – at least through the mid-nineteenth century – of some of the consequences of mankind’s periodic collapses into mass-mindedness. If Mackay was around today, he would be able to devote a chapter to the emergence of the latest secular religion: environmentalism." (Butler Shaffer, Lew Rockwell)

"Janet Street-Porter: A song by Madonna won't save the world" - "The egotism of pop stars never fails to amaze. As record sales plummet, they continue to search for ways to promote their wares, and the latest scam is a series of concerts designed to "raise our awareness" of climate change, called Live Earth scheduled to take place over 24 hours in seven locations on seven continents, on July the seventh this year." (London Independent)

"From Pew To Pulpit: Prophet Al Gore & The Church Of Global Warming" - "Walk carefully, I say unto you, for thou art on holy ground. This was the rude awakening that I received when I entered the global warming debate. It would also be the warning that I would forward to anyone wishing to enter the debate over the validity of man-made global warming. I stepped into this discussion after watching the similarities between the scare tactics of the global warmers and what I had seen of the scientific community's certainty of global cooling back in the 1970s." (Paul Ibbetson, Post Chronicle)

"AWARENESS RAISED" - "Apparently the point of these Gaiapalooza concerts is that they’ll raise awareness of global warming. You know, just in case you’ve never heard of it and require a seven-nation, 120-network Woodstock of warmening to bring you up to speed. But if raising awareness is so crucial, why does Al Gore place restrictions on media coverage of his awareness-raising speeches?" (Tim Blair)

Gosh, they noticed! "Security Council Accused of Overstepping Bounds" - "UNITED NATIONS, Apr 12 - The 130-member Group of 77, the largest single coalition of developing countries, has lashed out at the Security Council, accusing the U.N.'s most powerful political body of violating the organisation's charter by planning an open debate next week on energy, security and climate." (IPS)

"Honest Craig's Carbon Sink is about to open for business" - "VICTORIA - I've never been much of an entrepreneur, but some opportunities are just too good to miss, even for someone as timid as I am. The thing that pushed me over the edge was federal Environment Minister John Baird's declaration that the time for studying climate change has passed. "At some point, it's sort of like the planet's on fire, we've got to throw water on it," Baird said in an interview last week. "We don't need to research it; we need to act." When a recent convert like Baird gets that kind of religion, you have to know that there is going to be a lot of money blowing around. Especially when governments continue to measure progress by how much they spend, rather than by what actually gets achieved with all that cash." (Craig McInnes, Vancouver Sun)

"The Might's, May's and Could's Of Global Warming" - "The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is proposing to declare the ice floe populations of the polar bear to be threatened with extinction -- a bureaucratic process that is supposed to be based on the best available science. Since the proposed action is predicated on global warming's threat to the species, the best available science should be abundant and above reproach, right? After all, the global warming debate is over, isn't it?" (Cheat Seeking Missiles)

Comments submitted to the Fish and Wildlife Service regarding its proposal to list the polar bear as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (Marlo Lewis, Jr., CEI)

We've been getting quite a bit of e-mail traffic regarding 'global warming' and the apparently cold April being experienced in many regions. In truth no one understands the world's weather and climate sufficiently to give a completely satisfactory explanation but a clue may be found in the current lack of activity from that big heater in the sky.

"By airship to the North Pole -- Zeppelin expedition will survey sea ice in the Arctic" - "In 2008, scientists will, for the very first time, create a continual profile of ice thickness in the Artic, extending from the Canadian coast across the North Pole to Siberia. At the core of the project lies the crossing of the North Pole by zeppelin. The airship will be equipped with an electromagnetic sensor developed at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, one of the 15 research centres within the Helmholtz Association. The sensational project of French physician Jean-Louis Etienne is financed by the French oil company Total and will be presented in Berlin on April 5." (Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research)

"Report: Army Corps has to face global warming" - "NEW ORLEANS — The Army Corps of Engineers, and by extension politicians who push pork-barrel projects on the agency, need to acknowledge that the world is heating up and seas are rising to better protect the nation from flooding and hurricanes, a report by two environmental groups said.

The report, released Thursday by Environmental Defense and the National Wildlife Federation, was a compendium of complaints against the agency that have gained momentum since the agency's catastrophic engineering mistakes caused about 88 percent of the flooding of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina." (Associated Press)

Granted we are hardly classed as supporters of the Corps's engineering and pork barrel-larded bureaucracy building but adding 'global warming' to their arsenal of excuses is perhaps top of the list of the most counterproductive ideas we've ever heard.

"UN 2009 Climate Summit Might Spur Treaty Talks" - "OSLO - A possible world climate change summit in 2009 could act as a deadline for governments to agree a new treaty to fight global warming beyond 2012, the head of the UN Climate Change Secretariat said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Inconvenient Truths and Consequences: Mistakes to Avoid in the Global Warming Fight" - "You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows, and the wind is blowing hard in favor of action on climate change. The Bush administration now agrees that human activities are warming the planet, the Supreme Court says the Environmental Protection Agency has violated the law by not regulating auto emissions, and Democrats in Congress are demanding new measures to cut greenhouse gases.

How will we address this new challenge? The most plausible answer is: with a lot of command-and-control programs that micromanage various industries on the assumption that the government knows best. In a word, badly." (Steve Chapman, Reason)

"Stephen Hale: Stirring speeches won't tackle climate change" - "If speeches by politicians and consultation documents could tackle climate change, we'd be home and dry by now. I should know. I used to write them. A passionate concern for climate change is the new must-have accessory in British politics. Yet once you strip away the rhetoric, it is painfully clear that we are still a very long way from action on the scale needed. The blame game is getting us nowhere. It is time to address the reasons why left and right will fail to deliver effective action." (London Independent)

That's alright Stephen, humans have no prospect of knowingly and predictably altering the climate by tinkering with a few minor variables anyway.

"Schwarzenegger's 'green' credentials questioned" - "Though a national symbol of environmentalism, some say he is unreliable in signing needed bills and too beholden to the oil industry." (LA Times)

Some of the enormous cost of elections, a small downside of democracy: "Australia: Government to fund climate info centre" - "THE Commonwealth will pay $126 million to establish and run a climate change adaptation centre to keep the nation informed of the likely impacts of global warming. Speaking after today's meeting of the commonwealth and state and territory leaders (COAG), Prime Minister John Howard said climate change was discussed in detail, with premiers outlining their proposal for a greenhouse gas emission cut of 60 per cent by 2050." (AAP)

Guffaw! "Australia: States to go it alone on carbon" - "STATE leaders have agreed to introduce a national trading scheme for greenhouse gas emissions by 2010 with or without Federal Government involvement.

The eight Labor premiers and chief ministers announced the deal on the eve of today's Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting with Prime Minister John Howard.

In a move that will increase pressure on the Prime Minister over climate change, the premiers have agreed to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 60 per cent by 2050, using $3 million of their own funding." (The Australian)

These COAG meetings are always funny -- we have State Governments roughly equivalent to US county seats and significantly less useful, with a population as small as Australia's having three levels of government is totally redundant and we could well do without the State bureaucracies. All real power lies with the Feds and people deal with local government, leaving us all to wonder why we pay these puffed up popinjays.

"UN report calls for an urgent action on road and air pollution" - "SOARING car and air travel must be tackled if the world is to stop greenhouse gas emissions from transport rising rapidly over the next few decades, according to a leaked draft report by the United Nations' climate panel. The document, to be issued on 4 May in Bangkok by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), says governments are running short of time to avert big temperature rises, threatening more droughts, heatwaves, floods and rising seas. It highlights transport as a particular problem area, saying efforts to curb emissions "are faced with many barriers", despite options such as new engine technologies or biofuels." (The Scotsman)

"Airlines Should Buy More CO2 Credits in EU Plan - MEP" - "BRUSSELS - Airlines should be required to buy more credits to emit carbon dioxide (CO2) than currently envisioned in a plan to include aviation in the European Union's emissions trading scheme, an EU lawmaker said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"World Bank must lead on climate change, says Benn" - "April 12: The World Bank should challenge richer countries to help the developing world adapt to climate change and set 'bold new targets' for investment in renewables, Britain said today." (The Guardian)

"Gone Fission: Firms Weigh Nuclear Option" - "Ever since the Three Mile Island meltdown, it's been a veritable nuclear winter for nuclear energy lawyers.

There hasn't been a formal application for a new nuclear plant -- with its long, contentious and lawyer-intensive approval process -- for more than a quarter of a century. But rising energy costs and efforts to curb global warming have changed the climate in the energy industry, and in the nation's capital.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is expecting about 30 applications for new reactors in the next few years. Firms with established nuclear energy practices, like Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman; Morgan, Lewis & Bockius; and Winston & Strawn, say they're busier than they've been in years and are adding new lawyers. Other firms, such as Duane Morris and Thelen Reid Brown Raysman & Steiner, intend to catch some of the work -- construction, finance -- that will follow." (The Recorder)

"LNG faces complex landscape: Hurdles abound -- but so does tenacity of backers" - "Put a chill on the same gas that heats millions of California homes, and you get a public enemy that's been run off from town after town along the state's coast for years.

The latest setback for a proposed liquefied natural gas plant, which would perch well offshore from Oxnard, illustrates both the hurdles that the supercooled gas called LNG faces and the tenacity of those who say we need it." (Sacramento Bee)

"New road methods, rules aid Alaska oil exploration" - "ANCHORAGE, Alaska, April 12 - New Alaskan rules for when to drive on the tundra and refined techniques for building ice roads to carry heavy equipment have allowed oil companies to reclaim some of the exploration season lost to a warming climate, state officials said on Thursday.

But those gains may be short-lived as the Arctic climate continues to warm and the North Slope tundra softens further, warned Wyn Menefee, operations director for Alaska's Department of Natural Resource's Land, Water and Mining Division." (Reuters)

They’re back! (Number Watch)

"Little gain for the power consumer's pain" - "Government plans to target emissions in the electricity sector have sparked warnings, writes Brian Fallow in the second of a four-part series." (New Zealand Herald)

"Rachel Carson and the Malaria Tragedy" - "If Rachel Carson were still alive, April 12 would have been her 100th birthday. All over the Western World well-meaning, but misguided, souls marked that day with choruses of praise for the woman who almost singly-handed created the modern environmental movement. Her book, Silent Spring, warned us that man-made pesticides would kill our kids with cancer and eliminate our wild birds.

Since Silent Spring was published, of course, massive testing has documented that synthetic pesticides are no cancer threat to humans. Dr. Bruce Ames, who received the National Science Medal from President Clinton, has found that 99.999 percent of the cancer risks in our food supply come from natural pesticides which Nature has put in the fruits and vegetables to ward off the pervasive insects, fungi and diseases. Even so, the one-fourth of our population which eats the most fruits and vegetables has half the cancer risk of those who eat the least produce. So much for the toxicity of pesticide traces.

Rachel Carson’s major impact on the planet has been to discourage the use of a safe, cheap pesticide called DDT to suppress disease-bearing mosquitoes. North America and Europe used DDT to eradicate malaria. After our children were safe, we told the Third World not to use it because it might harm their bird populations." (Dennis Avery, News By Us)

We get a lot of queries wondering why there is such a misinformation campaign against DDT, unfortunately, much of it traces to sentiment like this:

This is as good a way to get rid of them as any. -- Charles Wursta, Chief Scientist for the Environmental Defense Fund, in response to the banning of DDT ("Them" refers to "all those little brown people in poor countries.")

This is hardly a novel sentiment: William Vogt, whose 1948 book Road to Survival had an enormous impact in the United States, denounced the 'untrammelled copulation' of Indians who were 'breeding with the irresponsibility of codfish', and said that the greatest tragedy China could suffer would be 'a reduction in her death rate'. Coupled with this we had the Ehrlichs and Lester Brown riding the overpopulation bandwagon, the Club of Rome, with their 'Limits to Growth' and their panic over population and resource constraint and consequently mass media-induced fear of people with the underlying notion people must be limited because 'they' will 'kill' the world.

Regrettably the foundation of Gaia worship is hatred of people and, since DDT is one of the greatest human health aids ever invented, it is by nature "bad" by virtue of being good for people. The great 'global warming' scam and desperation to limit people through constraint of the energy supply is likely a simple extension of this collective psychosis.

Scare campaign of the moment: "Anti-malaria pesticide affects male fertility" - "South African medical researchers have reported alarming evidence of low sperm counts and other damage to the male reproductive system linked to the use of the pesticide DDT in anti-malaria spray campaigns." (The Mercury)

Oddly enough people much more heavily exposed in the 1950s through 1970s exhibited no such problems (in fact these are years of the supposedly higher benchmark fertility measures).

NS's wild guess of the day: "Obesity's helper in triggering diabetes" - "If true, it could turn the conventional wisdom of how obesity causes diabetes on its head. Emerging evidence suggests that pollutants stored in body fat may be contributing to the ongoing rise of type 2 diabetes. While obesity is still thought to be a major cause, there is more and more evidence to suggest that persistent organic pollutants (POPs) also play a key role." (New Scientist)

"Study of US restaurants shows no healthier foods without healthier profits" - "With obesity, diabetes and other diet-related maladies on the rise in the United States, are healthy choices available when eating out? In an interview study of top executives at major U.S. restaurant chains, researchers found that the message is mixed. Growing sales and increasing profits led the list of factors that drive menu selection, although many respondents also expressed interest in providing low-fat, low calorie foods and fresh fruits and vegetables on their menus. The study, reported in the May issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, sought to understand how restaurant chains make decisions about their menus and the challenges surrounding offering healthier options on their menus." (Elsevier Health Sciences)

"Major genetic study identifies clearest link yet to obesity risk" - "Scientists have identified the most clear genetic link yet to obesity in the general population as part of a major study of diseases funded by the Wellcome Trust, the UK's largest medical research charity. People with two copies of a particular gene variant have a 70% higher risk of being obese than those with no copies." (Wellcome Trust)

"Cold, Soggy Weather Further Delays US Corn Seeding" - "CHICAGO - Rain, snow and cold temperatures across the US Midwest on Wednesday threatened to further push back the already delayed start of corn seeding and could lead to less corn being planted, agronomists said." (Reuters)

"UN: Wheat fungus spreads from East Africa to Yemen, threatening crops" - "ROME: A virulent new strain of a fungus capable of destroying entire wheat fields has spread from East Africa to Yemen, a U.N. agency warned Thursday. The Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organization said an estimated 80 percent of all wheat varieties planted in Asia and Africa were susceptible to wheat stem rust. The spores of the fungus are carried mostly by wind over long distances and across continents, the agency said in a statement." (Associated Press)

April 12, 2007

"Collective fears" - "Did you catch House last night? It brilliantly illustrated the power of nocebo: if we believe we’ve been exposed to something bad, we can develop the most extraordinary symptoms and convince ourselves we’re sick." (Junkfood Science)

"Manufacturing Consensus" - "Is the risk from exposure to bisphenol-A “one of the biggest public-health and scientific controversies in the world” - or is the Toronto Globe and Mail skewing science to advance a cause?" (Trevor Butterworth, STATS)

"Study: Cell phones are hazardous waste" - "U.S. scientists have determined cellular telephones consumers discard by the millions each year qualify as hazardous waste." (UPI)

"Climate key to species invasion by air" - "Far-flung regions with similar climates that are suddenly linked by a busy flight route are at an increased risk of an invasion of foreign species, according to scientists at Oxford University." (Oxford University)

"AIM to Clear Up Mystery of Elusive Clouds at Edge Of Space" - "NASA is preparing to launch the Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere (AIM) spacecraft, the first mission dedicated to exploration of mysterious ice clouds that dot the edge of space in Earth's polar regions. These clouds have grown brighter and more prevalent in recent years and some scientists suggest that changes in these clouds may be the result of climate change." (NASA)

"Top scientist debunks global warming" - "MANKIND is naive to think it can influence climate change, according to a prize-winning Australian geologist. Solar activity is a greater driver of climate change than man-made carbon dioxide, argues Ian Plimer, Professor of Mining Geology at the University of Adelaide and winner of several notable science prizes. “When meteorologists can change the weather then we can start to think about humans changing climate,” Prof Plimer said." (AAP)

"Shrinking glaciers seen as sci-fi nonsense" - "A local glacier guide is laughing off reports climate change will start to melt away south Westland's glaciers. NIWA claims even a small temperature increase will cause a noticeable shrinkage of glaciers, hitting the popular tourist towns of Fox and Franz Josef in the pocket. However, Fox Glacier Guides operations manager Kerrie Urem says Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers have been growing hundreds of metres since 1999. She says snowfall in Westland has been increasing over the past eight years, providing perfect conditions for advancing glaciers. "The scientists have been watching too many science fiction movies and should come and see for themselves what is happening in New Zealand." (Newstalk ZB)

"Fuzzy Climate Math" - "In a campaign without peacetime precedent, the media-entertainment-environmental complex is warning about global warming. Never, other than during the two world wars, has there been such a concerted effort by opinion-forming institutions to indoctrinate Americans, 83 percent of whom now call global warming a " serious problem." Indoctrination is supposed to be a predicate for action commensurate with professions of seriousness." (George F. Will, Washington Post)

"Our children need to know all about global warming" - "Vancouver businessman Will Cole-Hamilton wants to put a copy of Al Gore's Oscar-winning climate-change movie An Inconvenient Truth into every high school in Canada. He and his friends have formed the Learning Climate Educational Society, which has obtained distribution rights from Paramount Pictures and raised $10,000 toward the $50,000 needed to buy a DVD for every school in every province and territory." (The Province)

"Is classroom Global Warming preaching indoctrinating the next generation?" - "Do you know what your children are learning in school about climate change? Have you ever looked at their textbooks? Is it education or indoctrination? How accurate are the facts? How much is it an ideological or a political message? Is it a balanced curriculum offering options or one imposing a singular view? How much is fear the vehicle of indoctrination?" (Dr. Tim Ball, Canada Free Press)

"Correction To Paper on Recent Ocean Cooling To Be Available Soon" - "The correction to the paper Lyman, J. M., J. K. Willis, and G. C. Johnson (2006), Recent cooling of the upper ocean, Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L18604, doi:10.1029/2006GL027033 will be available soon. The cooling will be shown to have been removed; however, the warming of the 1990s and up to 2002 will be shown not to have persisted. This will still be a challenge for the global climate modelers to explain, since the IPCC perspective of global warming requires a more-or-less monotonic increase in Joules within the climate system, in the absence of a major volcanic eruption." (Climate Science)

How appropriate: "Washington Was Too Hot, Politically, For Al Gore's Live Earth Concert" - "Washington has given Al Gore's global-warming concert the cold shoulder, so the former vice president has decided to move "Live Earth" to more hospitable climes: the swamplands of New Jersey." (Washington Post)

"Will Climate Effects Trump Health Effects In Air Quality Regulations?" - "With the legal decision in the United States to define CO2 as a pollutant, the important question on how to include this climate forcing in the assessment of emission controls with respect to the traditional primarily health related pollutants need to be considered. For example, should the climate forcing of CO2, which is claimed will result in major changes in the environment, be a more important consideration than the health effects of pollutants such as produced by fuels that are intended to reduce the emission of CO2." (Climate Science)

"The Supreme Court Finds CO2 Guilty as Charged" - "The Supreme Court apparently wants the EPA to suppress human CO2 emissions so they won’t overheat our planet or inundate the coast of Massachusetts. The Court essentially ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency offered no valid excuse for not regulating CO2 in American skies as a pollutant. Ultimately, this might well mean you won’t get electricity for your home or gasoline for your car.

Never mind that the evidence exonerates CO2. Seventy percent of the heating came before 1940, while 80 percent of the man-made greenhouse gases came after 1940. The earth has warmed, probably by 0.7 degrees C since 1850. But human-emitted greenhouses gases didn’t have the opportunity to commit that “crime.” (CGFI)

"This is Just Embarrassing" - "The Figure below is found in the IPCC WG II report, Chapter 7, supplementary material (p. 3 here in PDF). I am shocked to see such a figure in the IPCC of all places, purporting to show something meaningful and scientifically vetted. Sorry to be harsh, but this figure is neither." (Prometheus)

All we can say is "Welcome to the joys of IPCC propaganda, young Roger, nothing unusual here."

"Here We Go Again: Cherry Picking in the IPCC WGII Full Report on Disaster Losses" - "The IPCC WGII full report is available (hat tip: ClimateScienceWatch). I have had a look at what they say about disaster losses, and unfortunately, the IPCC WG II commits the exact same cherry picking error as did the Stern report." (Prometheus)

"Key climate question: What's the cost of carbon?" - "Current offset prices vary from 50 cents to $30 a ton. But the US Congress will have to find the optimum rate." (The Christian Science Monitor)

True value? Absolutely zip.

Eileen Claussen: "Climate Change Experts Look to European Model for Curbing Emissions" - "An international panel of scientists issued a report last week on the potential impacts of global warming. In the first part of a series on climate change, an advocate for an emissions cap-and-trade system used in Europe explains how it could work in the United States." (PBS)

Um, Eileen? The U.S. of A. is actually doing a lot better than the EU when it comes to emission reductions -- are you saying to want the U.S. to be less successful in this respect?

"US Uses India as Global Warming Excuse - Ex Minister" - "BRUSSELS - The United States is using India and China as an excuse not to cut its own emissions and sign an agreement that would extend the Kyoto Protocol past 2012, a former Indian environment minister said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

If they only knew... "Australian wine is feeling the heat of climate change" - "CANBERRA, Australia: Australia's booming wine industry faces drastic changes due to global warming as creeping temperatures spoil the taste of reputable labels and winegrowers search for cooler climates to plant new vines." (Associated Press)

... much of Australia's wine grape juice comes from irrigated desert along the Murray-Darling River system where daytime temperatures regularly exceed 40 °C (as it frequently does in the Barossa, Clare and Hunter Valleys, Padthaway, McLaren Vale...). The secret of Antipodean wine is high temperatures and lots of sunshine pushing fruit ripeness and sugar levels far higher than those found in the insipid and acidic wood sap from Europe (New World fruit achieves beaumé levels the Europeans can only dream about, another reason you won't find Aussie wines 'contaminated' with the antifreeze and other chemicals used to sweeten and make palatable the European drain cleaners mislabeled 'wine'). Some early, unfinished fruit is picked for the European export trade and some marginal regions deliver only such inferior product but most Australian wine growing regions are capable of delivering fruit so full-bodied you can make wines that'll wrestle your steak off the barbie for you. A little warmer in growing regions? No problem, we can always pick a day or two earlier.

"Warming could damage Arctic and release toxins" - "OSLO - Global warming will damage the hunting cultures of Arctic peoples, thaw polar ice and could release toxic wastes now trapped in permafrost dumps, a U.N. study showed on Wednesday.

The report, giving regional details of a global study by the U.N. climate panel issued on April 6 in Brussels, also said Arctic fish stocks and forests could be affected by a rate of warming in the Arctic almost twice the global average." (Reuters)

More virtual world trivia: "Climate Change Could Affect Hunting" - "Findings from a study headed by a South Dakota State University ecologist indicate that climate change could affect duck hunting in northeast South Dakota in the future." (Marshall County Journal)

Meanwhile: "New York Temperatures Rival Record for Coldest April" - "April 10 -- The groundhog's prediction for an early spring is proving wrong in New York City, where a cold front has kept temperatures about 7 degrees below the historical average this month, the National Weather Service said." (Bloomberg)

"West Europe Set For Hot Summer - UK Forecaster" - "LONDON - This summer is very likely to be hotter than average across western Europe and there is a 1 in 8 chance of another heatwave like 2003, which killed thousands of people, the UK's Met office said." (Reuters)

Hmm.... is the Met Office still predicting an El Niño year? Everyone else seems to think La Niña is on the cards.

Misanthropic campaign of the moment: Don't Let TXU Go Nuclear in Texas - still trying to deny your access to affordable power, fiends of the earth reveal their true colors and show it isn't carbon dioxide emissions that worry them but useful baseload power supplies.

Some of the following from The Environmentalists' Little Green Book, ISBN: 0-615-11628-0, others from John McCarthy's Quotations.

We must reclaim the roads and the plowed land, halt dam construction, tear down existing dams, free shackled rivers, and return to wilderness tens of millions of acres of presently settled land. -- Dave Brower, Friends of the Earth founder (also attributed to David Foreman, Founder of Earth First!, in his book Ecodefense: A Field Guide to Monkey Wrenching).

The only real good technology is no technology at all. Technology is taxation without representation by our elitist species [man] upon the rest of the natural world. -- John Shuttleworth, Friends of the Earth manual writer.

If you ask me, it'd be a little short of disastrous for us to discover a source of clean, cheap, abundant energy because of what we would do with it. We ought to be looking for energy sources that are adequate for our needs, but that won't give us the excesses of concentrated energy with which we could do mischief to the earth or to each other. -- Amory Lovins, Rocky Mountain Institute.

Giving society cheap, abundant energy would be the equivalent of giving an idiot child a machine gun. -- Paul Ehrlich, Stanford professor of biology.

Ehrlich is the very same twit who said: Hundreds of millions of people will soon perish in smog disasters in New York and Los Angeles...the oceans will die of DDT poisoning by 1979...the U.S. life expectancy will drop to 42 years by 1980 due to cancer epidemics. -- Paul Ehrlich, 1969 in Ramparts.

Let's not forget: We've already had too much economic growth in the United States. Economic growth like ours is the disease, not the cure.-- Paul Ehrlich, Stanford professor of biology. And: “A massive campaign must be launched to de-develop the United States. De-development means bringing our economic system (especially patterns of consumption) into line with the realities of ecology and the world resource situation.” -- Paul Ehrlich and Anne H. Ehrlich, “Population, Resources, Environment” (W.H. Freeman, San Francisco, 1970, 323)

The Ehrlichs are not alone, however: The only hope for the world is to make sure there is not another United States. We can't let other countries have the same number of cars, the amount of industrialization, we have in the United States. We have to stop these Third World countries right where they are. Who came up with this elitist pap? Why, none other than Michael Oppenheimer, Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University. Name sound vaguely familiar? It should, he serves as a lead author of the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, not to mention being a leading light for Environmental Defense. Our first clash with Oppie was over an article he wrote for then Environmental Defense Fund's quarterly claiming 'global warming' would cause sea level rises of some 200 feet by the middle of the 21st Century. As far as we can tell he hasn't improved much.

UN wallahs tend to have a bit of a thing against the U.S., energy and technology: Isn't the only hope for the planet that the industrialised civilizations collapse? Isn't it our responsibility to bring that about? -- Maurice Strong, head of the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro and Executive Officer for Reform in the Office of the Secretary General of the United Nations.

Bullspit! "Schwarzenegger Touts Environmental Goals" - "WASHINGTON - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger boasted Wednesday that California's leadership is making environmentalism both sexy and mainstream, not a guilt-driven movement for "tree-huggers" and "fanatics."

"Environmentalists were no fun, they were like prohibitionists at the fraternity party," the moderate Republican governor told a student audience at Georgetown University during an East Coast swing to promote his increasingly enthusiastic embrace of the environment." (AP)

Gorebal warming is built on a complete fiction Arnie and you are harming California.

"Anti-Travel Movement Targets Exotic Destinations" - "Exotic island resorts like Fiji, the Seychelles, and the Maldives could see upheaval in the coming decades if climate change swamps their idyllic shorelines, but these remote destinations also face a more immediate threat: new taxes and publicity campaigns urging travelers to help the environment by staying home.

The anti-air travel movement, most active at the moment in Britain and Germany, is causing jitters among tourism officials, hoteliers, and airlines serving the Caribbean and South Asian getaways most favored by European tourists. In some less-developed spots, a drop in the number of visitors or merely an end to future growth could spell serious economic trouble." (New York Sun)

Funny, isn't it? These are basically the same people who encouraged tourism rather than resource extraction and/or industry. Seems they want to preserve impoverished populations as a kind of private museum exhibit.

"Automakers pitch first climate-change court fight in Vermont" - "The case began just days after a US Supreme Court ruling that the Environmental Protection Agency must regulate greenhouse gases." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Actually Brad, the court simply kicked it back saying the EPA had to clearly articulate why not, that's a long way from forcing them to regulate carbon dioxide (if they actually meant 'greenhouse gases' then the EPA must also explain why it will not regulate respiration, evapo-transpiration, hot beverage making/cooking, clouds...).

Now it's funny: "Ford boss sorry after Bush blast joke bombs" - "The head of motor giant Ford is no longer laughing about his suggestion that he saved George W. Bush's life during a recent White House visit. The car maker has apologised after chief executive Alan Mulally said his claim that he had intervened to prevent the president from plugging an electrical cord into the hydrogen tank of an experimental vehicle had been meant as a joke." (Reuters)

"US Offers Renewable Fuel Standards For Vehicles" - "WASHINGTON - The United States announced new standards for renewable fuels for cars and trucks on Tuesday, but stopped short of committing to regulate greenhouse gases that spur global warming." (Reuters)

"Venezuela's Chavez Slams Bush Ethanol Plan" - "CARACAS - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Tuesday slammed US President George W. Bush's plan to substitute fuel ethanol for gasoline, joining a growing debate on the continent over use of the biofuel." (Reuters)

Alas, poor Britain... "New green ministry could endanger DTI" - "A new "super ministry" with responsibility for energy and environmental policy could be created in a radical shakeup of Whitehall departments, it was reported today. The plans, which would see the Department for the Environment, Food and rural Affairs (Defra) assume responsibility for matters concerning energy production and use, could spell the end for the Department of Trade and Industry, which currently deals with those decisions." (Guardian Unlimited)

A couple more think they've figured out a way to get more of your money: "ConocoPhillips, AIG Back Greenhouse Gas Cuts" - "NEW YORK - ConocoPhillips and American International Group joined the call for mandatory cuts to greenhouse gas emissions in the United States on Wednesday, the first major US oil company and insurer to back an aggressive plan to fight climate change." (Reuters)

"Green Light Districts: How many politicians does it take to screw in a light bulb?" - "So the environmentalists have decided that light bulbs are the latest indicator of civilizational decline. Compared to "sustainable" sources, conventional incandescent lighting uses too much electricity, and hence is responsible for emitting greenhouse gases and global warming. The only solution is for government to ban incorrect bulbs. The greens may believe themselves more enlightened than the rest of us, but honestly." (Wall Street Journal)

April 11, 2007

Shocking New Global Warming Study! Northern Forests May Increase Temperatures By 10 Degrees By 2100, New Study Says; Deforestation Could Cool The Planet - Forests on certain parts of the planet may actually warm the Earth, according to researchers from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

"CO2 lags behind temperature: how alarmists think" - "As we have explained in 2006, Vostok ice core records show that the carbon dioxide concentration averaged over a few centuries has been correlated with temperature at least for half a million of years. However, we know for sure that the temperature was the cause and the CO2 concentration was its consequence, not the other way around. It follows that the greenhouse effect hasn't been important in the last half a million of years." (The Reference Frame)

"Eco-Frights for Kids" - "Young readers in search of scary stories will soon have a whole new genre to enjoy. Children's books about global warming -- a market niche that didn't exist as recently as last fall -- are blossoming on booksellers' shelves faster than a red-tide algae bloom off the coast of Maine." (Wall Street Journal)

"A Green Vanity Affair: Saving the world with good intentions" - "Pulitzer Prize-potential pontificating is never more appropriate than in a journalistic exposé of heartless, power-hungry villains oppressing powerless victims and raping the Earth. And Vanity Fair’s 2007 Green Issue oozes with righteous indignation toward all those evil executive-branch politicians and big businesses which exploit the earth for power and profit.

Last year it was Al Gore, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., and Julia Roberts who were presented as representatives of a new breed of environmentalist. This year, Leonardo DiCaprio is V.F.’s eco-porn centerfold, dubbed not only an “Environmentalist” but even an “Eco-Hero.” It’s possible that Mr. DiCaprio earned these titles by dint of his personal efforts to reduce his carbon footprint. Then again, it may be that his appearance on V.F.’s cover has more to do with his celebrity and V.F.’s own corporate desire for profit. But perhaps I’m being too cynical." (Roy Spencer, NRO)

"How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Global Warming" - "A week after Time magazine’s “global warming” issue (which Energy Roundup wrote about here and here), Newsweek has one of its own hitting the stands." (WSJ.com)

"Climate change concert star Madonna accused of hypocrisy" - "The stars of a major Live 8-style concert to raise awareness of climate change have been condemned as hypocrites for failing to lead environmentally friendly lives themselves. The likes of Madonna and Red Hot Chili Peppers will perform at Live Earth at Wembley Stadium on July 7, yet campaigners say they are among the least "green" individuals on the planet." (Daily Mail)

"Carbon cost of climate change concert criticised" - "It has been billed as the greenest concert of the summer, a continent-crossing event aimed at galvanising support for the fight against global warming.

But yesterday, as the main acts for Live Earth were announced, among them Madonna, Corinne Bailey-Rae and the Black Eyed Peas, critics were raising eyebrows at the $2m to $3m (£1.1m to £1.6m) that the event is expected to cost in carbon offsetting." (London Independent)

"An Inconvenient Truth … Or Convenient Fiction?" - "The Pacific Research Institute's new film, “An Inconvenient Truth ... Or Convenient Fiction?” will have three premieres across America, in San Francisco (12 April), Washington, DC (18 April), and New York City (24 April). All are invited.

“An Inconvenient Truth ... Or Convenient Fiction?” is an entertaining, fact-based look at the climate change issue featuring Dr. Steven Hayward, PRI Director of Environmental Studies and F.K. Weyerhauser, Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute." (Brussels Journal)

"Crazy Like a Fox" - "Al Gore’s extreme proposals on climate change are smart politics—and bad policy." (Samuel Thernstrom, American.com)

Guess Al missed this: "NOAA Revisits Historic Hurricanes" - "Overview: Major revisions to the Atlantic basin hurricane database (or HURDAT) have just been completed for the second half of the 19th Century and early 20th Century. HURDAT is the official record of tropical storms and hurricanes for the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea, including those that have made landfall in the United States. This database is utilized for a wide variety of purposes: setting of appropriate building codes for coastal zones, risk assessment for emergency managers, analysis of potential losses for insurance and business interests, intensity forecasting techniques, verification of official and model predictions of track and intensity, seasonal forecasting, and climatic change studies.

There are many reasons why a re-analysis of the HURDAT dataset was both needed and timely. HURDAT contained many systematic and random errors that needed correction. Additionally, as our understanding or tropical cyclones had developed, analysis techniques at the National Hurricane Center changed over the years, and led to biases in the historical database to studies concerned with landfalling events was lack of exact location, time and intensity information at landfall. Finally, recent efforts led by the late Jose Fernandez-Partagas to uncover previously undocumented historical tropical cyclones in the mid-1800's to early 1900's have greatly increased our knowledge of these past events, which also had not been incorporated into the HURDAT database." (NOAA)

Highlights: 1. Busiest Hurricane Season Ever for the U.S.: The 1886 hurricane season has been analyzed to be the busiest on record for the continental United States.
2. Extremely busy Decade for the U.S. Atlantic seaboard: The 1890s were one of the busiest decades on record for the Atlantic seaboard of the United States.
3. Cycles of hurricane activity: These records reflect the existence of cycles of hurricane activity, rather than trends toward more frequent or stronger hurricanes. In general, the period of the 1850s to the mid-1860s was quiet, the late 1860s through the 1890s were busy and the first decade of the 1900s were quiet. (There were five hurricane seasons with at least 10 hurricanes per year in the active period of the late 1860s to the 1890s and none in the quiet periods.) Earlier work had linked these cycles of busy and quiet hurricane period in the 20th Century to natural changes in Atlantic Ocean temperatures.

Really? What's in it for them? "3 scientific societies applaud climate change report" - "MADISON, WI, APRIL 10, 2007 -- The 11,000 members of three scientific societies with its roots in agriculture have been closely watching the reports coming out of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)." (American Society of Agronomy)

Does that mean all 11,000 members reviewed the document? Did the societies then poll their 11,000 members for review results to then derive a consensus statement now released? Somehow, that seems unlikely.

"A dangerous climate" - "Many distinguished scientists refuse to participate in the IPCC process, and others have resigned from it, because in the end the advice that the panel provides to governments is political and not scientific." (AIM)

Oh brother... "Little Time to Avert Big Temperature Rise - UN Study" - "OSLO - Fighting global warming will be inexpensive but governments have little time left to avert big, damaging temperature rises, a draft United Nations report shows." (Reuters)

... actually they are more correct than sensible people might think. To understand why you need realize only two things: 1.) nobody lives in climate models and; 2.) climate models do a really crappy job of emulating the real world climate. So, 'fighting global warming' will be inexpensive -- in fact it will save a fortune because the sole requirement is to stop the model runs (too easy, innit?) and the only people who will not profit from this are those profiting from the global warming scare industry.

Readers should not take our word for this but actually search and look up modelers own statements on known model shortcomings (one of Hansen's can be accessed from here, in case you are having difficulty getting started) -- by their own admissions models can't reproduce surface temperature within 5 K over huge portions of the planet (roughly the difference between ice ages and interglacials), are out by 20-50 Wm-2 (of either sign) forcing estimates over such trivial regions as the tropics, inland regions, deserts and eastern oceanic bounds (from here they claim to be able to 'predict' the effect of +1.5 Wm-2 change from increased atmospheric CO2), can't handle clouds, precipitation, sea ice, albedo, aerosols, surface pressure and hence wind speeds...

The bottom line is that current generation climate models deliver emulations even less realistic than say the special effects in 1950s-era sci-fi flicks. Heck, we can't even decide what we are trying to measure when we talk about surface temperature yet. 'Fight global warming'... what are we gonna do, ask the Japanese if Mothra can come out to play?

Despite admissions there is no standard concept of, nor means of measuring global near-surface temperature and that models are seriously deficient, even useless as prognostication tools, Jim is still spinning the never ending story: "We Need to Take Action Soon" - "James Hansen, director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, spoke to DER SPIEGEL about the causes and consequences of global warming -- and why there are only ten years left to steer the world away from climate catastrophe." (Der Spiegel)

"Phony science and public policy" - "The public has become increasingly aware the science behind manmade global warming is a fraud. But maybe Americans like bogus science in pursuit of certain public policy objectives. Let's look at it." (Walter E. Williams, Washington Times)

An entire industry based on a pretend problem: "Potential Curbs on Greenhouse Gases by 2030 - UN" - "A draft UN report on the economics of global warming outlines a potential for big curbs in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030." (Reuters)

"UN chief eyes climate change summit" - "LONDON - The United Nations is contemplating a high-level meeting on climate change this year, which could lead to a world summit by 2009, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the Financial Times." (Reuters)

Say what? "0.5ºC rise in temp will reduce wheat yield" -"NEW DELHI: Climate change could deal a double whammy to Indian farmers as the phenomenon triggered by global warming could not only affect crop yields but also the total area under production, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) chairperson R K Pachauri said on Tuesday." (Times of India)

Since when has India's annual mean temperature been stable within 0.5 K? Here's a capture of a quick & dirty check -- this is the GHCN land surface temperature plot encompassing India (for MSIE users, others should try this link).

UNEP: "Climate change effects on Asia 'too alarming to contemplate,' researcher says" - "ANGKOK, Thailand: Climate change may lead to severe food and water shortages for an extra 130 million people across Asia by 2050 unless international action is urgently taken, according to a newly released U.N. report.

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Asia will be hit hard as the world's climate changes in the coming decades, including threats that are "too alarming to contemplate," said Achim Steiner, executive director of the United Nations Environment Program.

"Unchecked climate change will be an environmental and economic catastrophe, but above all it will be a human tragedy," said Steiner in a statement. "It is absolutely vital that international action is taken now to avoid dangerous climate change." (Associated Press)

"Climate policy must address Third World needs" - "NEW DELHI: Buffeted by calls from the developed world that climate change can only be addressed if India and China are pushed to accept more emissions curbs, India on Tuesday dug its heels in, saying it was ready to work on the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities".

Marking India's first official response to the recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which predicted a dire future for the world as a result of global warming, foreign secretary Shiv Shankar Menon said," This issue cannot be viewed in isolation and must be seen in the context of the needs of developing countries." (Times of India)

"IPCC Report slammed as “dangerous nonsense…lacking in scientific rigour”" - "“Dangerous unscientific nonsense” and “lacking in scientific rigour” are descriptions by two scientist members of the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition of the latest report of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) just released. No climate-sensitive environmental parameter been shown to be changing at a rate that exceeds its historic natural rate of change, let alone in a way that can be unequivocally associated with human causation." (Press Release: New Zealand Climate Science Coalition)

Indoctrination video: El cambio climático lo altera todo. ¿Cuántas primaveras nos quedan? (Climate change alters everything. How many Springs are left?) (YouTube)

What's wrong with this picture? On a TV network linked to El Pais, very much like TNYT in Spain, they are showing a series of short spots, 20s - 40s long, like the linked one. Commercial enterprises are paying for this ad and the corresponding time to show it. Why? What do they hope to gain by running these fright spots? Should consumers patronize or boycott these enterprises? Should shareholders accept these costs in the expectation of greater profits from conditioning consumers to greater costs for lesser products and services or should they throw out the board for squandering shareholders' profits on nonsense woe spots?

"Mooney & Nisbet: science should be deliberately politicized" - "The Science magazine has published a highly controversial text written by Matthew Nisbet and Chris Mooney whose main message is similar to the message of an equally controversial article about post-normal science by Mike Hulme. Neither Nisbet nor Mooney is a scientist but they are widely viewed by the public as spokespeople of science." (The Reference Frame)

"New Climate and Environmental Change Weblog Launched" - "A new weblog has been launched called Icecap. Its mission, as they state on their website is “ICECAP, International Climate and Environmental Change Assessment Project, is the portal to all things climate for elected officials and staffers, journalists, scientists, educators and the public. It provides access to a new and growing global society of respected scientists and journalists that are not deniers that our climate is dynamic (the only constant in nature is change) and that man plays a role in climate change through urbanization, land use changes and the introduction of greenhouse gases and aerosols, but who also believe that natural cycles such as those in the sun and oceans are also important contributors to the global changes in our climate and weather. We worry the sole focus on greenhouse gases and the unwise reliance on imperfect climate models while ignoring real data may leave civilization unprepared for a sudden climate shift that history tells us will occur again, very possibly soon." (Climate Science)

A tale of two Callendars (Number Watch)

"Global warming? Do the math" - "UN Report Proves Canada Must Act Now On Climate Change," trumpeted the headline of a Liberal party press release on Friday, timed to correspond with the release of yet another alarmist UN summary on climate change." (Lorne Gunter, National Post)

For an imaginary problem... "US : Grasping the Geopolitics of Warming" - "WASHINGTON - The Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, the Pentagon and the Federal Bureau of Investigation should pool data and offer a comprehensive review of the national security threat posed by global warming, say U.S. Senators Dick Durbin and Chuck Hagel." (IPS)

"Sunspots reaching 1,000-year high" - "Here's more inconvenient news from solar researchers. Even though our sun is quiet at the moment while we are in between peaks in the 11 year sunspot cycles, scientists based at the Institute for Astronomy in Zurich used ice cores from Greenland to construct a picture of our star's activity in the past.

Researchers extended the record into the past by measuring isotopes of Beryllium-10 (created by cosmic rays entering our upper atmosphere, which then drifts earthward and is trapped in the ice) in Greenland ice cores. Based on both observations and ice core records, we are now at a sunspot peak exceeding solar activity for any time in the past thousand years." (Watt's Up With That?)

"Researchers say global warming should cause shorter days" - "If global warming is true, then scientists have shown that changes in circulation and density will cause the Earth to spin just a tiny bit faster." (ITWire)

Some say 'eco-hero,' some say 'Rino': "California: How the Golden State went green" - "In the state where the car is king and the freeways go on forever, revolution is in the air - and the water, and the landfills. California is bravely blazing a trail in the fight against climate change. Now its Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, is being hailed as a global eco-hero." (London Independent)

"Buildings Called Key Source of City’s Greenhouse Gases" - "Laying the groundwork for a plan to reduce the production of greenhouse gases in the city, the Bloomberg administration released a study yesterday showing that New York’s roughly 950,000 buildings are responsible for a vast majority of the city’s carbon dioxide emissions." (New York Times)

THIS WEEK (8-14 APR): Last year was record warm, this year record cold! April is currently tracking as the coldest April in 113 years - a dramatic change from last years #1 warmest ever. Even after some late month moderation, April 2007 will likely keep the month in the top 7 coldest in history. The Southwest is the one exception, but even here temperatures will cool dramatically late in the week. And, the snow is not over! Short range computer models hint at the possibility of a stronger snow storm from Colorado to Wisconsin late in the week into the weekend. This will be the heavy wet variety." (AgWeb)

Already blaming 'climate change': "After Easter cold spell, US farmers tally losses" - "Already gone are 95 percent of South Carolina's $35 million peach crop and 90 percent of North Carolina's potential $25 million apple harvest." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"BRAZIL : The Amazon Jungle as Vast Savannah" - "RIO DE JANEIRO - An Amazon region that is less lush, where forest is replaced by grasslands, is the image drawn by the latest scientific reports in which meteorologists are taking the lead, going beyond even the direst warning of ecologists." (IPS)

Elections cause major waste: "Map to pinpoint climate dangers" - "A MASSIVE $300 million-plus project to build a map predicting exactly which coastal areas and farm lands are likely to be affected by climate change will be examined by John Howard and the state premiers this week.

The Prime Minister has told the premiers he wants a "wide-ranging discussion" on climate change at the Council of Australian Governments summit, including on a potential national emissions trading scheme.

But Mr Howard and the premiers will also consider a major report that suggests an urgent scoping study be undertaken into the nation's ability to adapt to climate change." (The Australian)

What happened to the legendary bronzed Aussie? Once cheerful larrikins coping with any adversity, stoic in the face of fire, drought and flood -- not any more, now reduced to a nation of spoiled and whimpering children, frightened by the contrived boogeyman of 'climate change' and most everything from french fries to mozzie spray. Once proudly forging a new nation we allowed Greenie ratbags to sabotage infrastructure development, killing dams for power and water storage -- all coming home to roost now though, with major cities unable to cope with simultaneous population increase and a drought cycle that should have been no more than a mild inconvenience now causing significant shortages and rationing. Electricity will be next.

Australia's problem is not 'climate change' -- it's always been a land of extremes, which is why "My Country" (Dorothea MacKellar 1885 - 1968) resonates so -- here's a few pertinent verses:

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror-
This wide brown land for me.

Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart around us
We watch the cattle die -
But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady soaking rain.

Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the rainbow gold,
For flood and fire and famine
She pays us back threefold.
Over the thirsty paddocks
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze

Australia's problem is not 'climate change' but Greenie saboteurs and a whining population suddenly devoid of vertebral rigidity and intestinal fortitude. How embarrassing.

From CO2 Science this week:

More Science vs. Gore on Rapid Polar Ice Wastage: The case against Al Gore's apocalyptic view of polar ice breakup and catastrophic sea-level rise grows stronger by the week, as important new findings continue to accumulate.

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week;
This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from Dye-3, Southern Greenland. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Precipitation (Variability - Asia): Have Asian droughts and floods become more frequent or extreme in response to the warming of the past hundred or more years?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO 2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Black-eyed Susan, Canola, European Larch, and Thale Cress.

Journal Reviews:
Precipitation and Temperature on the Northeastern Tibetan Plateau: AD 850-2002: How well are the two parameters correlated? ... and what do the results imply about 20th-century global warming?

River Discharge from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau: How much did it change over the last half of the 20th century?

Malaria and Tick-Borne Encephalitis in a Warming World: Have rising temperatures spurred their resurgence?

Effects of Fossil Fuel Combustion on Hardwood Tree Seedlings: How does the burning of fossil fuels impact the growth and survival of young tree seedlings growing in the understory of hardwood forests?

Effects of Elevated CO 2 on Leaf Stomatal Conductance and Evapotranspiration from Closed-Canopy Soybean Ecosystems: What are the effects? How tightly are the leaf-level and ecosystem responses coupled? And what are some of the study's more far-ranging implications?

Estherville, IA Temperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Estherville, IA. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Estherville's mean annual temperature has cooled by 1.23 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (co2science.org)

"China Gets Dutch Help to Fight Floods, Droughts" - "AMSTERDAM - The Netherlands, the world leader in flood prevention, will share its experience in water management and droughts warnings with China, which is suffering water shortages over vast areas, officials said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"World Bank Warns of Environment Cost of India Growth" - "NEW DELHI - India's robust economic growth will put unprecedented pressures on its land, water, air, soil and forestry resources, a World Bank report said on Tuesday. India's economy has grown more than 8 percent annually in the past two years, with manufacturing and services leading growth." (Reuters)

"Rebel with a Cause: The Optimistic Scientist" - Editor's note: Freeman Dyson is professor emeritus of physics at the Institute for Advanced Study, in Princeton. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society, a member of the US National Academy of Sciences, and a fellow of the Royal Society of London. In 2000 he was awarded the Templeton Prize for progress in Religion. He is the author of a new book, "The Scientist as Rebel." Benny Peiser of Liverpool John Moores University recently interviewed Dyson about his views on science, hope and the future. (Benny Peiser, TCS Daily)

"Why US pump prices are on the rise – once again" - "Some refineries face outages. Prices could rise to $3 a gallon by Memorial Day." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Passing the buck on fuel economy" - "NEW YORK -- President Bush thinks we should use less gasoline to reduce our dependency on imported oil and limit the emissions of greenhouse gasses. That's a worthy idea, and one that is endorsed by most politicians and a majority of Americans. But rather than change their behavior or make any sacrifices to actually accomplish this, Americans would rather shift the responsibility onto somebody else. In this case, it's the auto companies - and it's a mistake." (Alex Taylor III, Fortune)

"No US Corn Shortage Seen Yet Despite Ethanol Demand" - "CHICAGO - The amount of corn used for ethanol continues to climb but the supply of corn is beginning to rebound a bit as livestock feeders seek cheaper sources of animal feed, such as feed wheat, analysts said on Tuesday. No one is saying the food-versus-fuel debate will go away, but for now it appears the intensity is easing a little, they said." (Reuters)

"Eating Beef Harms Fertility – A Cock and Bull Story?" - "Are “the sons of beef-eating women” in danger?

“Fertility problems seen for sons of beef-eating women,” announced the San Francisco Chronicle, to the widespread dismay, no doubt, of the beef-eating mothers of America (thanks to similar stories The Baltimore Sun, The Philadelphia Inquirer and Medicine.net).

The news was driven by a new theory about male fertility, which suggests that if a mom consumes too much beef while pregnant, her son will suffer when it comes to being fruitful and multiplying. But in typical form, journalists were having a cow over research that didn’t say what they thought it said." (Rebecca Goldin, STATS)

"Milk beats soy for post-weighlifting muscle gain" - "Hamilton, ON. April 9, 2007 -- Got milk? Weightlifters will want to raise a glass after a new study found that milk protein is significantly better than soy at building muscle mass." (McMaster University)

"The essence of wellness" - "If your energies have been discombobulated, you may be interested to learn that [Tuesday, April 10] is World Homeopathy Day — a day devoted to public awareness of homeopathy. It coincides with the 252nd birthday celebration of its founder, Christian Friedrich Samuel Hahnemann." (Junkfood Science)

"Parents can just say “No”" - "The posture and look of the school nurse captured in the photograph* says it all. No amount of assurances of sensitivity and claims from school officials that kids enjoy the experience, can change the humiliation a young person feels having his/her body examined in school and a note sent home to his/her parents." (Junkfood Science)

"Nairobi's Plastic Bags are Barking" - "Sometime symptoms are confused with the disease that causes them. Litter is one such symptom often confused with an economic disease." (Greg Rehmke, TCS Daily)

"Big Pharma's Just Deserts?" - "The pharmaceutical companies are learning that sleeping with the government results in more than the one-night stand they desired. Legislation to impose price controls on pharmaceuticals purchased through the 2003 Medicare drug benefit will soon hit the Senate floor.

Some drugmakers may have to learn a second time. Merck's early efforts to mandate use of its new human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine could similarly backfire. What government gives with one hand it usually takes away with another." (Doug Bandow, The American Spectator)

"Supreme Court Brother Renders Weedy Decision" - "The eco-radical brother of a U.S. Supreme Court Justice has just ruled against the U.S. Department of Agriculture—for not adequately protecting organic farmers against genetically-modified alfalfa.

Alfalfa is wonderful forage for cattle; it also protects soil against erosion, and creates its own nitrogen fertilizer. It’s the fourth most widely-grown crop in the U.S. But an alfalfa field can get weed-infested to the point that it supports little milk or beef production. Such low yields are a serious eco-problem.

Humanity is already cropping and pasturing half the available land on the planet. We’ll need twice as much farm output by 2040 to feed 8 billion mostly affluent people—and their pets. Lots more milk and meat is being demanded every year, all over the world. None of the cats or dogs will agree to be vegetarian. We need to double crop yields again." (CGFI)

"Bypassing eggs, flu vaccine grown in insect cells shows promise" - "An experimental flu vaccine made in insect cells – not in eggs, where flu vaccines currently available in the United States are grown – is safe and as effective as conventional vaccines in protecting people against the flu, according to results published in the April 11 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Removing eggs from the flu vaccine manufacturing process is one option for health officials seeking to protect the population from seasonal flu as well as a potential bird-flu pandemic. Using eggs to grow vaccine takes time; a flu vaccine that relies on a different technology is capable of being produced in large amounts much more quickly, a key advantage if a bird flu pandemic were to occur." (University of Rochester Medical Center)

April 10, 2007

SHOCKING NEW GLOBAL WARMING STUDY! NORTHERN FORESTS MAY INCREASE TEMPERATURES BY 10 DEGREES BY 2100, NEW STUDY SAYS; DEFORESTATION COULD COOL THE PLANET - Forests on certain parts of the planet may actually warm the Earth, according to researchers from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

According to the new study, forests in mid- to high-latitude locations – such as boreal forests of Canada, Scandinavia and Siberia -- may actually create a net warming. The study concludes that by the year 2100, these mid- and high-latitude forests may make some places up to 10 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than would have occurred if the forests did not exist.

The research, led by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory atmospheric scientist Govindasamy Bala, appears in the April 9-13 online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Forests affect climate in three different ways: they absorb the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and help keep the planet cool; they evaporate water to the atmosphere and increase cloudiness, which also helps keep the planet cool; and they are dark and absorb sunlight (the albedo effect), warming the Earth. Previous climate change mitigation strategies that promote planting trees have taken only the first effect into account.

"Our study shows that only tropical rainforests are strongly beneficial in helping slow down global warming," Bala said. "It is a win-win situation in the tropics because trees in the tropics, in addition to absorbing carbon dioxide, promote convective clouds that help to cool the planet. In other locations, the warming from the albedo effect either cancels or exceeds the net cooling from the other two effects."

"If we really want to do something about global warming," said JunkScience.com's Steve Milloy, "providing chainsaws to Canadians, Swedes and Russians would seem a better investment than economy-killing greenhouse gas emissions reductions."

The real value of the study, Milloy said, is that it illustrates how little we know about the global ecosystem and climate. "Imagine that folks in Congress are actually contemplating harming our economy by making energy more expensive and more scarce based on exceedingly limited knowledge about the ecosystem and climate," added Milloy.

"I only have one question," said Milloy. "How did this study make it out of the Global Warming Politburo? Is the Minister of Propaganda still on Spring Break?"

"Late Changes Made Report More Dire, and Less" - "Since it was created in 1988, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has been criticized from all sides at one time or another.

Some scientists and industry representatives contend that it has played up dire findings; earlier this year, other scientists and environmental campaigners complained that its forecasts for rising seas in a warming world were far too conservative.

The summaries of the panel’s voluminous reports are fought over with particular vigor, especially at the point when they must pass muster with governments before they are officially approved.

In final work among authors and a late-night showdown between authors and government officials, the wording of the latest report was adjusted in some cases to play up uncertainty and in others to spell out the downside of climate-related trends. In at least one section, on climate impacts in Europe, those with a more dire view clearly had their way." (Andrew C Revkin, New York Times)

Accentuating the Negatives: The IPCC Working Group II Summary for Policymakers (SPM) - Comments by Indur M. Goklany

Moonbattery of the moment: "There is climate change censorship - and it's the deniers who dish it out" - "Global warming scientists are under intense pressure to water down findings, and are then accused of silencing their critics." (George Monbiot, The Guardian)

Pleasant conditions cause crime, apparently: "Street crime 'to rise with temperatures' experts warn" - "IT HAS long been known by police officers on the beat that cold winter nights keep criminals off the streets and crime levels down. But what happens when winter nights are no longer cold?" (The Scotsman)

Presumably then we can predict crime rates by the inverse of the latitude? So Singapore should then be amongst the crime capitals of the world and Moscow, say, a veritable safe haven?

co2boxeng.jpg (166799 bytes) We're saved!

Theo Richel, author of the famous Dutch web site, has informed us of this fantastic offer!

Please support

For just €498 (about US$670) you can have a personal CO2 box! See the English language advertisement linked from the adjacent thumbnail or click here for the original Dutch version (.pdf)

Show Gore you're one of his, spend your money now! (Alternatively, help JunkScience.com tone down the nonsense by donating today, either through our store or via the PayPal donation button. JunkScience.com cannot continue without your financial support.)

WMD mark II (weather of mass destruction, silly): "Bill ties climate to national security" - "WASHINGTON -- The CIA and Pentagon would for the first time be required to assess the national security implications of climate change under proposed legislation intended to elevate global warming to a national defense issue." (Boston Globe)

"La Nina May Form, But Timing and Strength Uncertain" - "NEW YORK - A La Nina weather anomaly may be forming in the equatorial Pacific, but a fog of unpredictability enshrouds when it may strike and how strong it might be, according to the Climate Prediction Center of the US National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration." (Reuters)

Amusing, isn't it? Here we are, unable to 'predict' a well-studied and reasonably localized phenomenon like the El Niño Southern Oscillation and yet gullibly accept claims of being able to model global climate decades, even centuries in advance. Go figure!

Their 5-year mission, to seek out new ways to scare the populace... "Plan now to adapt to changing climate" - "The most daunting challenge facing humanity throughout the rest of this century was clearly set out just two months ago in the first report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a United Nations group that since 1990 has been studying global warming.

The challenge?

To sustain life as we know it..." (Toronto Star)

Life is change but not that they'd know it...

Points for recycling: "Deadly fungus invades B.C." - "Warming climate blamed for tropical disease that has killed 8 people and countless animals on Vancouver Island." (Toronto Star)

They dust this silly piece off every so often. By the way, Cryptococcus gattii is endemic to Tasmania (Latitude >40°S) so it sure isn't specific to the tropics, nor is it dependent on warming for its distribution or introduction (thought to be through the nursery plant trade). Not sure if the reporters are simply woefully ignorant or deliberately deceptive.

"US Winter Wheat Farmers Fret After Weekend Freeze" - "KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A mild winter and a wet and warm start to spring had many US wheat industry players predicting a bountiful summer harvest. But that changed over the weekend when unseasonable freezing temperatures blanketed the US Plains and Midwest winter wheat growing areas, killing off some of the rapidly maturing plants." (Reuters)

"Winter Arctic Sea Ice Near Record Low" - "NEW YORK - Winter Arctic sea ice this year was the second smallest area on record in a sign of greenhouse warming, US climate scientists said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

They forgot to mention this is greater than the previous year and thus the year on year trend is actually an increase.

"Extreme Cold Endangering Alaskan Sea Otters: Will Media Report It?" - "Imagine for a moment that warmer-than-normal winter temperatures in Alaska were making it difficult for the endangered sea otter to find food, and making it easier for natural predators and illegal hunters to kill them. Would the global warming alarmists in the media be all over this story as another example of how man-made “climate change” is destroying the planet and endangering species that are its inhabitants?" (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

The answer is yes, sparingly: "Sea ice forces starving otters inland in search of food" - "ANCHORAGE, Alaska - An unbudging sheath of sea ice has blocked off the waters where the Alaska Peninsula's sea otters forage, forcing the starving animals inland on a search for food and making them easy prey for wolves and humans.

Federal biologists said similar die-offs have occurred before and they are not quite sure whether they should intervene. "We're concerned about large concentrations of sea otters that might get trapped and not have a way into the water," said Douglas Burn, head of the Fish and Wildlife Service's sea otter program in Alaska. "The hard part is, what would we do if we found that? We'd have to ask what are our options."

Die-offs normally happen at the edges of the animals' natural range, Burn said. The Port Heiden population lives farther north than other Bristol Bay sea otters, and similar freeze-outs have been documented since the early 1970s." (Associated Press)

For those prepared to read the entire article (key points above) then it's clear this is situation normal although 'global warming' hysteria has certainly unreasonably sensitized people to normal seasonal variation.

Mittelstaedt, of course: "Will snow cover become a thing of Canada's past?" - "By 2050, snowmobiling could be history in Eastern Canada, a quaint winter pastime from the days of yore. It will be just too warm to have reliable snow." (Globe and Mail)

"Canadian Heat Waves Declining?" - "No popular presentation of global warming is complete without images of people suffering from the effects of a heat wave. It seems so simple – the world is getting hotter, temperatures are rising everywhere, and therefore, heat waves will be longer, more frequent, and more severe. There are heat waves somewhere on the planet at any moment, so one would never run out of fresh material for such a story. Add in giant killer heat waves in Chicago and/or Europe, claim tens of thousands of deaths on those ever-increasing heat waves, and another scary global warming story emerges. Heat waves put a human face on suffering thanks to global warming, and if you include sweltering pets and animals at the zoo, the story is further embellished. Add in the familiar lines about the heat waves differentially impacting the elderly, the poor, and children, and the story is nearly complete. Obviously, blame the industrial nations (particularly the United States) for all the misery just for some icing on the cake." (WCR)

"California Snowpack Melt Stirs Water Worries" - "SAN FRANCISCO - Water content in the Sierra Nevada snowpack in California continues to drop toward its lowest level since 1990, raising concerns about the availability of water for generating hydroelectricity and irrigating the state's vast farmlands." (Reuters)

"Warming Not Behind Hurricane Activity - Forecaster" - "NEW ORLEANS - Natural changes in ocean currents are to blame for increased Atlantic hurricane activity in recent years, not man-made global warming as many scientists believe, hurricane forecaster William Gray said on Friday." (Reuters) | Blast from the past: Discover Dialogue: Meteorologist William Gray (Discover Magazine)

"Commentary: Are the Global Warming Zealots Walking the Walk on Prevention or Just Blowing Hot Air?" - "The other day, while returning home from a morning of running errands, my fourth grade son lamented that we were harming the environment by driving. I offered to pull the car over and let him walk home lest he cause any more damage. He thought about it a moment, then responded that since I was going that way anyway he may as well keep riding. My son is no fool." (Joseph C. Phillips, BlackAmericaWeb.com)

Here we go again: "Acidic Oceans Threatening Sea Life, UN Panel Says" - "SYDNEY - Rising carbon dioxide emissions are making the world's oceans more acidic, particularly closer to the poles, heralding disaster for marine life, a major UN report on climate change impacts says." (Reuters)

Cute hypothesis -- pity it fails to account for sea critters evolving during periods of far greater atmospheric carbon dioxide and oceanic acidity...

"TIME Magazine on Global Warming: A Guest Weblog by Hendrik Tennekes" - "TIME magazine’s April 9 double issue, showing a worried and lonely penguin on the cover, running “The Global Warming Survival Guide” as a banner line, is representative of the public perception of climate change.

As a young faculty member at Penn State forty years ago, I quickly learned what my colleagues thought of the TIME/LIFE empire: “LIFE is the magazine for people who cannot read, TIME is the magazine for people who cannot think.” I am tempted to agree today. But I will resist, because TIME merely follows the anticipated wishes of its subscribers, much as both parties in Congress are slaves to their perception of the wishes of taxpayers. If I want to say anything, I will have to focus on TIME’s interpretation of the perception of its subscribers in the USA." (Climate Science)

"Gasoline at $6 vs. warming?" - "It's hard to say which is scarier -- apocalyptic global warming scenarios or the economic impact of some of the proposals designed to prevent them." (Ben Lieberman, Washington Times)

From the People's Republic of California: "Paying the price for an SUV" - "Call it the Robin Hood approach to global warming. California drivers who buy new Hummers, Ford Expeditions and other big vehicles that emit high levels of greenhouse gases would pay a fee of up to $2,500.

And drivers who buy more fuel-efficient cars - like the Toyota Prius or Ford Focus - would receive rebates of up to $2,500, straight from the gas-guzzlers' pockets.

That's the provocative proposal from a Silicon Valley legislator whose "Clean Car Discount" bill is gaining momentum, sending car dealers into a tizzy and sparking passions among motorists." (San Jose Mercury News)

"Carbon storage won't be optional" - "AUSTRALIANS may be stripped of their right to block the storage of greenhouse gases beneath their land under laws being considered by the state and federal governments.

The capture of millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions from power stations and their storage in giant underground reservoirs, a process known as geosequestration, have been backed by the Howard Government and Labor as major steps in helping Australia and other nations to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions.

Experts claim the technology could be commercially viable in Australia by 2015.

A geosequestration law expert has warned that if proven viable, the new technology will need new laws based on oil and gas exploration and extraction that override landowners' rights to veto storage underneath their properties.

Access to underground mineral resources has been reserved by governments as a condition on land titles. But the right to inject rather than extract resources has not been addressed." (The Australian)

"China to Take Part in Post-Kyoto Talks - Report" - "TOKYO - China, the world's second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, will take part in negotiations on a framework for limiting global warming after 2012, the daily Yomiuri Shimbun said on Saturday." (Reuters)

"Vanity Fair Tells Conservatives to Go to Hell" - "Magazine attacks Limbaugh, sentences 'environmental sinners' to 'Dante's Inferno: Green Edition'" (Dan Gainor, Business & Media Institute)

"Foundation to Offer $100 Million to Deal With Global Warming" - "The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation is creating a $100 million program to support research intended to encourage policies aimed at reducing the threat of global warming. The foundation’s climate change project, which is being announced today, comes amid an increasing political push for legislation to curb emissions of carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels like coal, natural gas and gasoline." (New York Times)

"For the Chief Justice, a Dissent and a Line in the Sand" - "The portrait of John Roberts as a builder of consensus may need a bit of adjustment." (New York Times)

"Judicial and 'Science' Activism: A Dangerous Brew" - "The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) on April 2, 2007 handed down another decision which shifted power away from the people of the United States into the hands our large and growing government.

As pointed out in Mark Levin’s book, “Men in Black” the SCOTUS has been weakening the US Constitution and shifting citizens’ rights and freedoms to the bloating US government for well over a century. It’s a grave concern. The continuing activism of the SCOTUS is a dangerous trend as 20th century history of totalitarian governments has shown. Centralized governments are harmful, inherently so." (Michael R. Fox, Hawaii Reporter)

Eye-roller du jour: "Time to act on auto emissions" - "The Bush administration normally is not timid when it comes to assertions of executive authority. It usually subscribes to the notion that almost anything the president wants to do, he is entitled to do. So it was more than a little strange to hear it singing a different tune on the subject of the greenhouse gases produced by automobiles. Not only did the Environmental Protection Agency lack the desire to regulate these emissions, it argued, it lacked the statutory power to act even if it wanted to.

But last week, it got a withering retort from the Supreme Court, which ruled that the Clean Air Act gives the agency ample authority to combat global warming by reducing the amount of carbon dioxide that cars generate. And the court went further, concluding that the agency has an affirmative obligation to take such action or provide persuasive reasons not to." (Chicago Tribune)

"Challenge to Emissions Rule Is Set to Start" - "The fight over cars and carbon dioxide moves to a federal courtroom in Burlington, Vt. this week, in a case that could reshape vehicles sold in parts of the United States." (New York Times)

"Latin America demands more for its oil and gas" - "Gas-rich countries like Bolivia are rolling out plans to nationalize energy reserves." (The Christian Science Monitor)

Hey look -- some enviros think they can find a problem: "Reserves to dry up as clean coal becomes viable" - "NSW could run out of coal within 35 years, by which time any clean coal technology used to deal with greenhouse gases generated by the industry would only be in its infancy, say researchers." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"A Plastic Wrapper Today Could Be Fuel Tomorrow" - "WASHINGTON, April 8 — Scientists worldwide are struggling to make motor fuel from waste, but Richard Gross has taken an unusual approach: making a “fuel-latent plastic,” designed for conversion. It can be used like ordinary plastic, for packaging or other purposes, but when it is waste, can easily be turned into a substitute diesel fuel." (New York Times)

Shriek! "Problems Brewing as EU Farmers Switch to Biofuels" - "HAMBURG - European beer brewers may face increasingly tight malt supplies later this year as farmers switch to grains for biofuel production, the head of a leading German malt marketing company said on Thursday." (Reuters)

"Hero in the fight against malaria" - "TODAY in towns, villages and remote rural areas across southern Africa, young children are getting ready to attend school, mothers are preparing food and fathers are heading out to their jobs. That many of these young children and adults are not sick in hospitals or lying at home suffering the agonising fevers caused by malaria is due in large part to the work of one man: Dr Brian Sharp. Sharp headed SA’s Medical Research Council’s Malaria Research Lead Programme and spearheaded some of the most successful malaria control programmes in the region. His death on April 2 after a long battle with cancer leaves a significant gap in the malaria control community." (Richard Tren, Business Day)

A tale of two headlines (Number Watch)

"When media shapes perceptions" - "A story in the news this weekend perfectly illustrates how easy it is to manipulate our perceptions of risk. A close look gives us a few new skills to add to our critical thinking arsenal, too." (Junkfood Science)

"Managing and preventing obesity in Canadian adults and children" - "With 59% of Canadian adults being overweight and 23% being obese, plus the disturbing increase in childhood obesity, it is clear that obesity is a major individual and public health issue in Canada." (Canadian Medical Association Journal)

"New guidelines to address growing obesity epidemic" - "The first-ever Canadian Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPG) on the Management and Prevention of Obesity in Adults and Children, published April 10, 2007 in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ), recommend that waist circumference be measured in all Canadian adults, and that a national surveillance system be developed that incorporates this measurement along with height and weight.

This represents a landmark publication, as Canada is the first country in the world to produce comprehensive evidence-based guidelines to address the management and prevention of overweight and obesity in adults and children. These are also important guidelines for health professionals and policy-makers to help them address Canada's increasing prevalence rates." (Canadian Medical Association Journal)

"RAND study finds people who are severely overweight grow faster than other obese Americans" - "The proportion of Americans who are severely obese -- about 100 pounds or more overweight -- increased by 50 percent from 2000 to 2005, twice as fast as the growth seen in moderate obesity, according to a RAND Corporation study issued today.

"The proportion of people at the high end of the weight scale continues to increase at a brisk rate despite increased public attention on the risks of obesity and the increased use of drastic weight loss strategies such as bariatric surgery," said Roland Sturm, author of the report and an economist at RAND, a nonprofit research organization." (RAND Corporation)

"The Coming Plague" - "Bad policies deliver their disasters when overtaken by events. A peace-in-our-time narcotic stupefied democracies for years while Hitler seized power and built Panzers. We are now four decades into another self-induced daze that will end in another great spasm of death." (Peter Huber, Wall Street Journal)

Oh, for some useful pesticides... like DDT maybe: "Bedbugs bounce back: Outbreaks in all 50 states" - "Walter has stopped hugging his friends. He is throwing out his clothes and furniture, and he rarely comes out of his Tenderloin hotel room anymore. He's not suicidal, but darn near. He has bedbugs.

Nearly eradicated in the United States 50 years ago, resistant strains of "super" bedbugs are infesting mattresses at an alarming rate. In what's being touted as the biggest mystery in entomology, all 50 states are reporting outbreaks of the blood-sucking nocturnal critters.

Pest control companies nationwide reported a 71 percent increase in bedbug calls between 2000 and 2005. Left alone, a few bedbugs can create a colony of thousands within weeks. "We never treated bedbugs until 2002. Now we have a dedicated bedbug crew working on this every day," said Luis Agurto, president of Pestec in San Francisco." (SF Chronicle)

"Stop shopping ... or the planet will go pop" - "In the week that saw Primark mania, Jonathon Porritt, the government's green guru, says consumerism is now a lethal disease. David Smith reports" (The Observer)

"A vanished sea reclaims its form in Central Asia" - "The $85.8 million project, started in 2001, is on track to be completed in September. But it has already shown surprising results. The Kok-Aral Dam has caused the small Aral's level to swiftly rise to 38 meters, or 125 feet, from a low of less than 30 meters; 42 meters is considered the level of viability. Although World Bank water experts had forecast that the water levels would begin to rise only in three years or so - while other experts had put the Aral beyond any hope of reclamation - the small Aral's surface area has already expanded by 30 percent, bloated by about 10 million cubic meters of new water." (Ilan Greenberg, New York Times) | Dam project aims to save Aral Sea (BBC) | Flashback: 1990: Aral Sea is 'world's worst disaster' (BBC)

"Cattlemen applaud renewed efforts on Superfund clarification: Lawmakers say Congress never intended for manure to come under Superfund" - "U.S. cattle producers are applauding the introduction of legislation, supported by 66 members of Congress, to clarify that livestock manure is not a hazardous substance under Superfund laws.

In recent years, opponents of animal agriculture have suggested Superfund laws should be applied to manure from animal feeding, farming and ranching operations. (Superfund is the common name for the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, CERCLA of 1980, and Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act, EPCRA of 1986.)

Eight Senators and 58 House leaders from both political parties are now saying that Congress never intended for America's farms and ranches to be slapped with liabilities and penalties under the Superfund law.

"Superfund is about toxic waste sites and chemical spills, not livestock manure on farms and ranches," says NCBA Director of Legislative Affairs Stacey Katseanes. "The Superfund laws were created in the 1980s to provide for cleanup of toxic waste dumps and hazardous chemical spills, to force reporting of releases of hazardous chemicals and to enable emergency response." (High Plains Journal)

"Pollution, Stress Blamed for Poor China Sperm Count" - "BEIJING - Pollution, stress, smoking and multiple abortions are all leading to a rise in infertility in China, which may affect up to one-tenth of Chinese couples, Xinhua news agency said on Monday." (Reuters)

Duh! Changes in attire and central heating could similarly affect counts and motility (there's a reason testes are not internal organs and it's because sperm production in humans is poor at body temperature).

"Dr. Waxman's Drug Lab" - "Congress is rumbling to life on pharmaceutical prices, and the cause du jour is biotechnology medicine. Both chambers are considering legislation that would allow for the manufacture of lower-cost "generic" copies of biopharmaceuticals. Proponents of the plan speak a language of easy certainties, but the issues -- and potential consequences -- are vastly more complex." (Wall Street Journal)

"BPI upholds permit for GMO corn" - "Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) Director Joel Rudinas has upheld the permit for Monsanto’s genetically modified corn MON863, assuring that the strictest tests and most stringent standards were applied by the BPI on the genetically-modified organism (GMO) corn MON863 before it was approved for entry and cultivation in the Philippines." (Philippine Star)

"GE brassica trial for South Island" - "9 April 2007 -- If Crop and Food get their way there could be a GE field trial involving brassicas at Lincoln in the very near future. The aim of the trial is to assess agronomic performance of vegetables and forage brassicas over 10 years. The vegetables will be modified for resistance to caterpillar pests like cabbage white butterfly and diamond-back moth." (Farm News)

"Insect-tolerant brinjal, rice crops in India soon" - "India will soon start cultivating crops of insect-tolerant brinjals and rice as a group of scientists with a seed firm are close to developing a genetic technology." (IANS)

"Fighting fungi and academia" - "AFTER almost 20 years researching one soil-dwelling bacterium, Dr Murali Nayudu is "extremely satisfied" as his work moves into the commercialisation phase, yet disappointed at the lack of peer and institutional support he has received." (Canberra Times)

April 9, 2007

"Lessons of Heart Disease, Learned and Ignored" - "The toll from the nation’s No. 1 killer could be reduced if the medical system delivered care that is known to make a difference." (Gina Kolata, New York Times)

"Smear or Slam? Greenpeace Bites Apple" - "Apple ranks bottom in new Greenpeace study of enviro-friendly computer companies: scientific exposé - or a shameless publicity stunt?" (Trevor Butterworth, STATS)

More mercury hysteria: "SoCal school evacuated after mercury found on student's clothing"  -"RIVERSIDE – The Environmental Protection Agency asked school officials Thursday to evacuate more than 950 students from a school the day after mercury was found on a boy's clothing there." (Associated Press)

"Priority: healthy children" - "As a neonatal intensive care nurse for many years, the media’s spin of a study released this week left me shuddering with worry for the well being of pregnant women and their babies. It exemplified the problem of reporters having insufficient expertise in the field they are reporting on. Or, maybe it just highlighted how our society’s obsession over obesity and fitness has caused everyone to lose all ability to think." (Junkfood Science)

"Promoting fitness, wellness or prejudice?" - "In the news over recent weeks were the most heartbreaking examples of how children can be hurt when “educational” programs are based on beliefs rather than careful thought and good science." (Junkfood Science)

"Cradle-to-grave customers" - "I wasn’t going to even comment on this news item because Junkfood Science readers have become quite familiar with the goings-on of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation but because of the evidence, I just have to...." (Junkfood Science)

"Want Fewer Fries With That?" - "Small changes in daily habits could stop an epidemic in its tracks." (Paul Rozin and Andrew B. Geier, American.com)

"What your employer might not know but you’ll want to — The myth of cost-saving wellness programs" - "Employers are increasingly compelling employees to participate in “wellness” programs at work; complete insurer “health risk assessments” to record their family health history, personal medical problems, and lifestyle behaviors like diet and exercise; and agree to screenings, physicals and disease management of their heath indices, such as blood pressure, cholesterol levels, blood sugars and body weights. Employers pay insurers for subsequent profiles on their employees’ health indices and purchase wellness programs. In return for their workers’ participation, employers are promised lower health insurance premiums." (Junkfood Science)

"Knut Rock Me" - "I wish I could have been a fly on the wall at the meeting where the German environmentalists declared the fatwa against the baby polar bear." (Douglas Kern, TCS Daily)

One of the reasons... "Solomons quake raises island from the sea" - "A MOUNTAINOUS island has been lifted several metres out of the sea by the tumultuous seismic jolt that triggered the devastating Solomons tsunami. Ranongga Island is now surrounded by a moonscape of dying white and brown coral that has been exposed by the remarkable phenomenon that has extended the shoreline out to sea by up to 100m." (The Australian)

... we are unimpressed by claims "global warming" is sinking islands -- Ranongga is between the Cartaret Islands and Tuvalu in the tectonically and volcanically active Pacific Rim (sometimes known as the "Ring of Fire") and none of these are suitably stable platforms for determining sea level trends (Tuvalu actually suffers more from excessive groundwater extraction-caused subsidence and erosion due to removal of surrounding coral reef structure for limestone construction material than from seismic activity but the result is the same -- the sea stays put, it's the island that's moving).

The one real surprise here is that activists have not (yet) claimed this is due to global warming making the planet's crust expand, raising the island and killing coral reefs.

"Why So Gloomy?" - "April 16, 2007 issue - Judging from the media in recent months, the debate over global warming is now over. There has been a net warming of the earth over the last century and a half, and our greenhouse gas emissions are contributing at some level. Both of these statements are almost certainly true. What of it? Recently many people have said that the earth is facing a crisis requiring urgent action. This statement has nothing to do with science. There is no compelling evidence that the warming trend we've seen will amount to anything close to catastrophe. What most commentators—and many scientists—seem to miss is that the only thing we can say with certainly about climate is that it changes. The earth is always warming or cooling by as much as a few tenths of a degree a year; periods of constant average temperatures are rare. Looking back on the earth's climate history, it's apparent that there's no such thing as an optimal temperature—a climate at which everything is just right. The current alarm rests on the false assumption not only that we live in a perfect world, temperaturewise, but also that our warming forecasts for the year 2040 are somehow more reliable than the weatherman's forecast for next week." (Richard S. Lindzen, Newsweek International)

Has The Crone now a deliberate editorial policy of being so clueless? "Hot and Cold" - "Last week began with a Supreme Court decision declaring that the federal government had the authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions and all but ordering the Bush administration to do so. It ended with a report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change — the world’s authoritative voice on global warming — warning that failure to contain these emissions will have disastrous environmental effects, especially in poorer countries, which are least able to defend themselves and their people against the consequences of climate change." (New York Times)

The message of WGI's report summary, albeit somewhat obscured by lousy reporting and apparently only loosely based on the complete 2nd-order draft, is primarily one of 90% certainty that Climate 2001 greatly overstated potential CO2-induced warming and its consequences (sea level rise, etc., ...). Now we have WGII's report summary and find that ideologues, supposedly guided by science reviewed by WGI but obviously not on the same page, deciding they need to ramp up the hysteria to make up for WGI's lack of zeal. Cue media histrionics, exemplified here by NYT.

And how does any of this tie back in to the original enhanced greenhouse hypothesis? Very badly, actually -- see Hadley Centre's atmospheric temperature tracks for channel 4, 2 and 2LT equivalents (stratosphere, mid and lower troposphere, respectively) and note that the stratosphere has not cooled since the mid 1990s as it most assuredly should have done if increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide was genuinely absorbing more outbound longwave infrared radiation in the troposphere. Note further the slight cooling of the troposphere until the 1976 step warming with the PDO phase shift (seen most clearly in Alaskan temperature change), negligible response until the 1997/98 El Niño and subsequent (possible) warming with the new millennium. None of which is similar to the steady increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide nor Earth's hypothetical response thereto.

Enhanced 'Gore Effect'? "Record Cold Sweeps Nation After Release of IPCC’s Global Warming Report" - "The multitudes of anthropogenic global warming skeptics around the country couldn’t have scripted this any better.

As the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released its Fourth Assessment Report Friday presaging doom and gloom as a result of global warming, a cold snap gripped much of the country promising all-time low April temperatures in many cities across the fruited plain." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"The Age of the Climate Refugees?" - "The picture painted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is one of blighted nations and millions of desperate immigrants fleeing climate disaster. But experts disagree about whether the bleak vision will ever come true." | UN Report Exclusive: Climate Change Impact More Extensive than Thought | Bad News for the Planet: Humans Responsible For Climate Change, Says UN Report (Der Spiegel)

Hello! Where were you? "A Climate of Intolerance: Facts, not emotion, should inform discussion of climate change" - "Few scientists or rational politicians doubt that global warming is a serious issue that poses long-term dangers to the planet. The scientific evidence that the world’s climate has changed and that this change is accelerating is convincing. But it is also beyond doubt that the world is in danger of being held captive by powerful lobby groups that have distorted data, made unjustified extrapolations and attempted to stifle debate on one of the most important issues of our time.

The warnings issued by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in Brussels yesterday are a collection of worst-case scenarios. The report, approved by 130 governments and endorsed by 2,500 scientists (few of whom probably had any hand in writing it), makes scary reading." (London Times)

For more than a decade JunkScience.com has been warning about this over-hyped nonsense being used by misanthropists and other special interest groups to drive an extreme agenda and now you notice there's a problem? Sheesh!

"White House is resolute at staying cool over forecasts" - "The White House acknowledged yesterday that the “global challenge” posed by climate change “requires global solutions”, but once again sought to play down some of the most apocalyptic forecasts." (London Times) | Press Briefing on the Second International Panel on Climate Change (The White House)

"China Promises To Act On 'broad Based' UN Climate Report" - "The Chinese government was actively involved in drafting Friday's United Nations report on climate change and will implement recommendations as a "responsible member of the international community," state media on Saturday quoted a leading climatologist as saying." (DPA)

"Scientists walk out in protest at China's intransigence" - "Some of the world's best-informed climate change scientists walked out of an all-night drafting session of yesterday's report on global warming, as tempers flared. The protest, which included a prominent US scientist, took place after Chinese diplomats sought to water down a section spelling out the degree of certainty researchers attach to the impact of climate change. During a fractious night of negotiation, China and Saudi Arabia were identified as the countries which sought most systematically to dilute the text." (London Independent)

"After UN Report, German Demands for Strong Action on Climate" - "German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called for "decisive action" in a united approach to countering climate change, in an interview following the publication Friday of a report by the UN panel on climate change." (Deutsche Welle)

"Merkel: Report Confirms Climate Change Is a Fact" - "The United Nations on Friday issued its most dramatic warning yet about the potentially catastrophic effects of climate change on the planet. European political leaders say we must cut greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to a climate change process that is already underway." (Der Spiegel)

"A Comment on IPCC Working Group II on the Importance of Development" - "Implicit in the work of the IPCC, and almost explicit in the report released yesterday, is the overriding importance of how the world choses to develop in the future. In the analysis in the IPCC lies the inescapable fact that how the world chooses to develop, independent of how the world responds to climate change, will modulate future global per capita GDP by a factor of up to 4.7 (the differences between the lowest and highest in the IPCC storylines for the future). By contrast, how the world chooses to respond to climate change, independent of how the world develops, will modulate future global per capita GDP by a factor of 1.05 to 1.20 (i.e., the conclusions presented in the IPCC WG II and the Stern Report)." (Prometheus)

"Are we to believe latest global warming report?" - "The UN Climate Change panel is asserting — again — that humans are overheating the planet. Again, they have no evidence to support their claim — but they want the U.S. to cut its energy use by perhaps 80 percent just in case. Stabilizing greenhouse gases means no personal cars, no air-conditioning, no vacation travel. Nancy Pelosi says one-third of the Senate want this too.

It’s a remarkably sweeping demand, given that the earth has warmed less than 1 degree C, over 150 years. This on a planet where the ice cores and seabed sediments tell us the climate has been either warming abruptly or cooling suddenly for the past million years." (Dennis T. Avery, Ag Weekly)

"Cool heads missing in the pressure cooker" - "The first thing that strikes you on reading the latest consensus report from the world's climate scientists about the effect of global warming is that it is like the plot of an Armageddon movie.

The next thing that strikes you about the report is the high degree of uncertainty to which the authors readily confess. Climate change, the scientists write, "is taken to be due to both natural variability and human activities. The relative proportions are unknown unless otherwise stated." (Peter Hartcher, Sydney Morning Herald)

"As Temps Go Below Freezing & Snow Falls in April, Net Hype 'Dire' Global Warming" - "The ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts on Friday all hyped the “dire” warning on global warming from the UN's “prestigious” Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), with the CBS Evening News leading with two full stories. But ABC's Charles Gibson acknowledged “a bit of irony on the day global warming report was released,” given “parts of the Northeast are digging out from April snow” as “temperatures could be 20 to 40 degrees below normal,” making it “colder on Easter day than on Christmas day." NBC anchor Brian Williams followed up his newscast's global warming story with how “the problem isn't warming but what could be a record cold Easter weekend in parts of this country.” CBS anchor Russ Mitchell didn't point out any contradiction with the hyperbolic stories on global warming as he described the current weather simply as “strange” since “a Spring freeze is on” in the Northeast." (Brent Baker, News Busters)

Audio: "John Laws Morning Show on Friday" - "You've heard Al Gore and Nicholas Stern in their recent trips to Australia warning that we're headed for a global warming disaster, but what about the Australian experts who say global warming is a lot of hot air?

Professor Bob Carter caused quite a stir when he hosed down the doomsdayers on the John Laws Morning Show on Friday... and it's definitely worth hearing what he had to say!" (John Laws Morning Show) | HUMAN-CAUSED GLOBAL WARMING: McCarthyism, intimidation, press bias, censorship, policy-advice corruption and propaganda (.pdf)

"New Zealand, skeptical radio program" - "You can listen to this 30-minute-long audio, featuring Richard Lindzen and the NZ Climate Science Coalition, reliability of surface measurements, hockey stick graph, Wegman report, economic absurdity of the Kyoto protocol, bizarre alliance of New Zealand with Europe as opposed to Australia and the U.S., and many other topics. The show ends with a professional Shakespeare-like theater performance of Prof Philip Stott in the New York debate." (The Reference Frame)

"Evaporation Is Equal To Precipitation On The Global Scale - Implications To the Conclusion On A Claimed Increase of Atmospheric Water Vapor" - "In early March, there were exchanges of e-mails with respect to the Climate Science conclusion regarding the 2007 IPCC Statement for Policymakers claim on page 7 that “The average atmospheric water vapour content has increased since at least the 1980s over land and ocean as well as in the upper troposphere. The increase is broadly consistent with the extra water vapour that warmer air can hold.” (Climate Science)

"Guest Weblog By Professor Ben Herman Of The University of Arizona" - "Professor Ben Herman has graciously agreed to write a guest weblog for Climate Science. He is an internationally very well respected scientist. His credentials include that he has been the Director of the Institute of Atmospheric Physics and Head of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona.

Dr. Herman’s research interests include radiative transfer and remote sensing. He is primarily concerned with the optics of atmospheric aerosols, polarization and scattering, and the application of inversion techniques to analyze remote sensing data obtained from aircraft and satellites. Currently, he is working on several satellite based remote sensing projects to monitor ozone, temperature, water vapor, and aerosols from space." (Climate Science)

"Water Vapor Feedback" - "In response to an inquiry to Scott Saleska, Dan Kirk-Davidoff, a prominent expert in the field, has sent the following suggestions:" (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

North American Upper Treeline #1 (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

North American Upper Treeline #2 (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

North American Upper Treeline #3 (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

"Climate of Opinion: Why we believe in global warming." - "Al Gore will have no trouble finding in Monday's Supreme Court ruling more evidence that global warming is a reality, indeed a dire threat.

He will soon say--you can take this to the bank--words like: "Now, even a majority of the Supreme Court has recognized the danger of global warming." And he'll be right in the sense that the Court invokes the magic word "consensus" for a physical fact that itself is unproven, unprovable and exists purely in the realm of speculation.

Al Gore has made himself, in his curious way, the personification of a society's impulse to manufacture political certainty out of irresolvable scientific uncertainty, of which the Supreme Court is the latest culprit/victim. You can see this by arranging the questions related to global warming in descending order of urgency." (Opinion Journal)

"Religion turns green" - "TWO religious festivals in just six days, but what a difference.

Six days before Christians celebrate this Good Friday, global warming believers held their own holy ceremony. Earth Hour, it was called, to save not humans but the planet. Damn humans. The Sydney Morning Herald ran pages of tree-killing newsprint begging readers to save the planet by switching off their lights at 7.30pm on Saturday for an hour. Oh, the greenhouse gases this would cut!

Your television news would have shown the lights of Sydney Harbour Bridge going out, precisely symbolising a green future, but not much else seemed to dim. Thousands drove in gas-belching cars to watch. And what was achieved? A dip in power use in the Sydney CBD so slight it saved just 24 tonnes of carbon dioxide. That's the equivalent of the gases emitted by four return trips to London. In fact, it's exactly what green gurus Al Gore, David Suzuki, Mikhail Gorbachev and Sir Nicholas Stern emitted in flying here to lecture us about cutting these gases.

Earth Hour made zero difference to the world's temperature, and was purely a spiritual ceremony. But that's the sign of a religion – lots of faith and little reason." (Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun)

"Caroline Overington: Do as our eco saviours say, not as they do" - "AS everybody knows, Sydney is the most vibrant and liveliest of Australian cities, so it's no surprise that dour environmentalists decided that Sydney - glorious, glittering Sydney - should be the first Australian city to suffer through Earth Hour. Earth Hour? Yes, it was a very bad idea, organised by a group known as the WWF. Not the wrestlers, apparently, but the World Wildlife Fund." (The Australian)

"Arnold Goes Green on Newsweek Cover" - "California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who recently called America's sideline position on global warming "embarrassing," has taken the lead on climate-change policy. "What we're basically saying to the federal government is, 'Look, we don't need Washington'," Schwarzenegger tells Newsweek in the current issue. "And so let us create the partnerships and let us let the world know that America is actually fighting global warming."

San Francisco Bureau Chief Karen Breslau talks to Schwarzenegger about his policies that he hopes to spread to the rest of the country, and the world, in the April 16 cover "Save the Planet -- Or Else" (on newsstands Monday, April 9).

This comprehensive cover package on the environment not only looks at Schwarzenegger's crusade, but also at several mayors' efforts to make their cities green; science and carbon dioxide emissions; how a younger generation of activists is speaking up and offers some tips on how to live a greener life." (NewsMax.com)

D'oh! "Europe's Problems Color U.S. Plans to Curb Carbon Gases" - "Wout Kusters, director of a manufacturing plant in the Dutch lowlands, knows something the U.S. Congress needs to know. So does Gervais Pruvost, a laborer in a small cement plant in northern France. So does just about every German homeowner.

When you're trying to slow down global warming, beware of unintended consequences.

As U.S. lawmakers work on the details of their greenhouse-gas legislation, they are looking carefully at Europe's experience. Five Senate proposals all use the same basic approach, known as "cap and trade," that Europe has used for the past two years. But what the snappy name "cap and trade" means is that the market will put a price on something that's always been free: the right of a factory to emit carbon gases. That could affect the cost of everything from windowpanes to airline tickets to electricity.

Europe has already hit a few bumps with its program. There's the Dutch silicon carbide maker that calls itself the greenest such plant in the world, but now can't afford to run full-time; the French cement workers who fear they're going to lose jobs to Morocco, which doesn't have to meet the European guidelines; and the German homeowners who pay 25 percent more for electricity than they did before -- even as their utility companies earn record profits." (Washington Post)

"Bias 101: How to Impugn the Credibility of an Inconvenient Expert" - "John at Power Line has an excellent post documenting just how a left-wing reporter can use neutral-sounding language to make a casual observer doubt the credibility of a leading global warming skeptic:" (Matthew Sheffield, News Busters)

"Al Gore does 'disservice' by stirring alarm over global warming, scientist says" - "NEW ORLEANS: The United States' leading hurricane forecaster on Friday called Al Gore "a gross alarmist" for making the Oscar-winning documentary about global warming.

"He's one of these guys that preaches the end-of-the-world type of things. I think he's doing a great disservice and he doesn't know what he's talking about," Dr. William Gray said in an interview with The Associated Press at the National Hurricane Conference, where he delivered the closing speech." (Associated Press)

"Why Won’t Al Gore Debate?" - "CHICAGO, IL: In recent months, former vice president Al Gore has become the world’s most recognized advocate of the theory that human greenhouse gas emissions are altering the world’s climate and could cause catastrophic damage if not arrested and reduced. He is getting hundreds of millions of dollars in free publicity from the press and from environmental groups that echo his warning.

But Al Gore refuses to debate those who say global warming is not a crisis." (Joseph L. Bast, Heartland Institute)

"Australian TV Exposes 'Stranded Polar Bear' Global Warming Hoax" - "Remember that wonderful picture of stranded polar bears on an ice floe that were used by folks like soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore to demonstrate how dire the man-made global warming issue is?" (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"Alaska is in no rush to protect polar bear" - "ANCHORAGE, Alaska - The polar bear is mentioned only obliquely in the latest international survey of global warming science - as a "predator high in the food chain" likely to suffer as sea ice melts in the Arctic.

But Alaska's 1,200-pound "canary in the coal mine" is looming larger than ever in the debate over the impacts of man-made greenhouse gases and what - if anything - should be done about them.

The state House of Representatives passed a resolution last week opposing efforts to list the polar bear as "threatened" under the federal Endangered Species Act. Arguing that the bears are doing fine worldwide, Alaska House Speaker John Harris, R-Valdez, dismissed as an "unfounded, unproven scientific hypothesis" the notion that release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere is causing climate change." (McClatchy Newspapers) | Polar bear hunter says his traditional life now a political pawn (CP)

"'World News Tonight' Kicks off Global Warming Series After Report on Record Cold Snap" - "This is really hysterical, and requires all sharp objects, food and drinking vessels to be properly stowed before proceeding." (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

"The adaptability of man to his climate" - "Yesterday, the IPCC Climate Change Report was released. Now the hand wringing starts. I’ve made a lot of entries on climate change here, I’ve given newspaper interviews, radio interviews, written guest columns and letters to the editor. Mostly what I got from that is loads of criticism heaped on me. Some called me unqualified to comment, others said I’m caught up in a cultural bias that stems from my political views, others say I'm just flat wrong. But few have even bothered to engage me on the topic, preferring to write about me, rather than what I've said.

To those whom voiced such complaints I say: “tough noogies”, I’m pressing on. But I am going to give it a rest for awhile after this entry. There’s many more interesting things I haven’t covered yet here. And I'm sure many readers would like to see some other topics. Rest assured I’m not done with the subject though. There's a big idea brewing.

As for the IPCC report:" (Watt's Up with That?)

"Rice resistant to global warming eyed" - "Japan's rice output will fall significantly and most of the nation's beech forests could die off if temperatures rise due to increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, according to a report on global warming compiled by the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry. The ministry will work on such countermeasures as developing new rice breeds resistant to heat or lack of water, to be discussed at a meeting April 25 of its global warming task force, the officials said. The measures are to be announced in July." (Kyodo News)

"Michael P. Tremoglie: Philadelphia Homicides Caused By ... Global Warming?" - "During the past several months Mayor John Street has furnished several different reasons as to why Philadelphia is Murder, Inc." (Evening Bulletin)

Ah, Eurocrats :) "Time to tax the carbon dodgers" - "As the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change unveils its latest forecasts of impacts around the world, some in Europe are asking how all nations can be induced to become low-carbon economies. One answer, says John Hontelez, is through taxes and incentives on trade." (BBC)

"Does Wall Street prefer cap-and-trade?" - "Dynegy CEO Bruce Williamson joins the Pigou Club and, in the process, suggests one interest group that would prefer cap-and-trade to Pigovian taxes:" (Greg Mankiw's Blog)

"Power to the People: A new book finally gives electricity the treatment it deserves" - "The Grid: A Journey Through the Heart of Our Electrified World, by Philip F. Schewe (J. Henry Press, March, 2007)

In 1927, the Englishman and travel writer Stephen Graham published the book New York Nights. In it he describes a time he spent walking by Consolidated Edison’s power plants on the East River in Manhattan. “Oh, what is Edison contriving there,” Graham asked. “Are they engines of death or life?”

On a few occasions in modern New York history, Gothamites found out the answer quickly and abruptly—they are engines of life. In the fall of 1965 and the summer of 2003, massive electrical grid blackouts disrupted life in the northeastern United States and parts of Canada, and cost billions of dollars in damages.

We were lucky in 2003. I was living in Queens then, walking distance from the power stations that had gone down. The day was cool by New York summer standards. And the day was long: we were without light for only a few hours of the night. It could have been worse.

Indeed, it has been. A blackout in 1977, this one localized to New York City, triggered arson, rioting, and looting.

Each time there is a major power disruption like these, citizens are left wondering, How could this happen? What is going on? Who is to blame? The electrical grid is so vital to commercial and social life, and at the same time so taken for granted, that when electricity just disappears, the feeling of helplessness is deep and unsettling." (Nick Schulz, American.com)

Buy this book and help JunkScience.com at the same time.

Ah, hydrogen... "Plug it in, fire it up, Mr. President" - "Credit Ford Motor Co. CEO Alan Mulally with saving the leader of the free world from self-immolation. Mulally told journalists at the New York auto show that he intervened to prevent President Bush from plugging an electrical cord into the hydrogen tank of Ford's hydrogen-electric plug-in hybrid at the White House last week." (Detroit News)

"Nuclear power enters global warming debate" - "WASHINGTON — The renewed push for legislation to cut greenhouse gas emissions could falter over an old debate: whether nuclear power should play a role in any federal attack on climate change." (LA Times)

"The Consequences of Corn" - "Much as we like the idea of ethanol production — and especially the potential of cellulosic ethanol, from sources other than corn — it would be a tragic mistake to jettison two decades of farm-based conservation for short-term profit. Corn ethanol will replace only a small fraction of the petroleum we use, and if it does so at the cost of a new agricultural land rush, then we will have lost much more in conservation than we gained in energy independence." (New York Times)

"Report: NASA Watchdog Too Cozy With Boss" - "NASA's top watchdog routinely tipped off department officials to internal investigations and quashed a report related to the Columbia shuttle explosion to avoid embarrassing the agency, investigators say." (AP)

"Genetic Testing and Insurance" - "Why the Fear of "Genetic Discrimination" Does Not Justify Regulation" (Gregory Conko and Neil A. Manson, CEI)

"A Tale of Two Scientific Consensuses" - "Look who's letting ideology overrule science." (Ronald Bailey, Reason)

"Bad Science Makes Bad Law" - "In 1897 the Indiana House of Representatives unanimously passed House Bill 246, a measure that redefined the calculation of the value of pi, the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Fortunately, the Senate scuttled it. A California legislator has produced a worthy successor, in the form of unscientific anti-biotechnology regulation." (Dr. Henry I. Miller, TCS Daily)

"Monsanto develops drought resistant genetically modified cotton" - "ST. LOUIS: Seed-player Monsanto has been developing a drought resistant genetically modified cotton variety; Monsanto Executive vice-president, Jerry Steiner, told reporters here on March 30.

The drought resistant genetically modified cotton variety could possibly be released by 2015 for commercial cultivation he hopes.

They hope to release a drought tolerant cotton seed by the middle of next decade. However, they would be able to say for sure after five years, when the variety is to be released." (Bharat Textile)

"Death to Pests" - "If a Fresno State professor succeeds, his work to genetically engineer plants will save valuable crops from devastating nematodes." (Fresno Bee)

"Something smells fishy" - "Food scientists are hoping to put GM fish protein into our ice-cream. Should we let them, asks Kate Wighton" (London Times)

"GE debate misleading" - "New Zealanders need to recognise the benefits of all agricultural production systems including genetic engineering, writes TONY SHELTON." (The Press)

"Biotech rice pact reached" - "Panel will allow test variety only in a distant county, with other restrictions." (Sacramento Bee)

"Antibiotic tobacco plants a possibility" - "Antibiotics may soon be produced by tobacco plants if the Canadian government approves controversial molecular farming technology." (Gauntlet News)

"How to Confine the Plants of the Future?" - "A NEW generation of genetically engineered crops that produce drugs and chemicals is fast approaching the market — bringing with it a new wave of concerns about the safety of the global food and feed supply." (New York Times)

April 7, 2007 -- Weekend Special

Working Group II Contribution to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fourth Assessment Report, Climate Change 2007: Climate Change Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, Summary for Policymakers has been released.

These are always fun as an imaginative group of people take the virtual worlds created in climate models and treat them as "data" and then script up all manner of horror stories about the real world to titillate the populace.

Then another bunch of people, this time representing governments who have been buying votes with past such scare stories and promises to "do something about it," come along to edit the scare stories in an effort to prevent the voters from figuring out that they have not "done something about it" for the simple reason that imaginary dragons are really tough to slay.

Given the IPCC Working Group I Contribution to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fourth Assessment Report: Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis actually starts the process of withdrawing from their previously way-over-the-top prognostications from virtually worthless prognostication models, we don't pay a whole lot of attention to the estimated effect on the real world of imaginative warming responses that occur only in virtual worlds.

The media, on the other hand, take this nonsense very seriously. Let's see how they are going with it:

"U.N. panel issues climate warning" - "BRUSSELS - Climate experts issued their starkest warning yet about the impact of global warming, ranging from hunger in Africa to a fast thaw in the Himalayas, in a report on Friday that increased pressure on governments to act." (Reuters)

"Scientists, governments clash as report reveals dangers of climate change"  -"BRUSSELS — After a marathon session that saw angry exchanges between diplomats and scientists, an international global warming conference approved a major report on climate change Friday." (USA TODAY)

"UN Talks on Global Warming Report End With `Very Good Document'" - "April 6 -- United Nations negotiations over a global warming report ended today after delegates completed discussions of how human activities are bringing climate change." (Bloomberg)

"Scientists, governments clash over warming report" - "BRUSSELS - Scientists clashed with government officials at a U.N. panel on climate change on Friday over how strongly global warming is affecting plants and animals and the degree to which humans are causing temperatures to rise." (Reuters)

"Bleakest climate report approved" - "BRUSSELS, Belgium — As the world gets hotter by degrees, millions of poor people will suffer from hunger, thirst, floods and disease unless drastic action is taken, scientists and diplomats warned Friday in their bleakest report ever on global warming." (AP)

"Warming May Spur Extinctions, Shortages, Conflicts, World Experts Warn" - "Global warming threatens to extinguish hundreds of millions of human lives and nearly a third of the planet's wildlife, an international panel of climate scientists said in a report issued today." (National Geographic News)

"Emissions Already Affecting Climate, Report Says" - "Scientists unveiled today the most detailed portrait yet of a world already in the midst of climatic and coastal changes, driven by global warming from human activities." (New York Times)

"Report spells out winners and losers in global warming: UN panel's study warns adjustments will be needed" - "Climate change has already started washing over the North American economy, and as the Earth heats up, there will be a deep, and possibly painful economic transformation, according to significant new research." (Globe and Mail)

"Earth faces a grim future if global warming isn't slowed, U.N. report says" - "A new global warming report issued today by the United Nations paints a near-apocalyptic vision of the Earth's future if temperatures continue to rise unabated: more than a billion people in desperate need of water, extreme food shortages in Africa and elsewhere, a blighted landscape ravaged by fires and floods, and millions of species sentenced to extinction." (LA Times)

"Billions face climate change risk" - "Billions of people face shortages of food and water and increased risk of flooding, experts at a major climate change conference have warned." (BBC)

"U.S., China Got Climate Warnings Toned Down" - "Some sections of a grim scientific assessment of the impact of global warming on human, animal and plant life issued in Brussels yesterday were softened at the insistence of officials from China and the United States, participants in the negotiations said." (Washington Post)

"UN Warns of Extinction, Flooding From Global Warming" - "April 6 -- A United Nations panel warned global warming will cause extinctions to mount, water shortages to spread and droughts and floods to become more frequent as man-made emissions of greenhouse gases cause the Earth to warm." (Bloomberg)

"Climate situation critical" - "Water scarcity poses the biggest threat to Australia from climate change and desalination plants may provide some relief, the nation's top weather chief said today." (AAP)

"CLIMATE CHANGE: The Worst Is Yet To Be" - "BERLIN - Hundreds of millions of people are at early risk from the consequences of climate change, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) confirmed in its new assessment published Friday." (IPS)

"Scientists Detail Climate Changes, Poles to Tropics" - "BRUSSELS, April 6 — From the poles to the tropics, the earth’s climate and ecosystems are already being shaped by the atmospheric buildup of greenhouse gases and face inevitable, possibly profound, alteration, the world’s leading scientific panel on climate change said Friday." (New York Times)

"Climate Change Could Cause Permanent Drought" - "Global warming is turning the Southwest into a permanent Dust Bowl, where the dry conditions of our worst 20th century droughts — the 1930s and 1950s — become the norm over the next century, according to new research." (Albuquerque Journal) | With web site, no less

"CLIMATE CHANGE: The Challenge of the Century?" - "BROOKLIN, Canada - Climate change is already altering the Arctic, sub-Saharan Africa, small islands and Asia's river deltas, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported Friday in Brussels." (IPS)

"U.N. Draft Cites Humans in Current Effects of Climate Shift" - "The latest United Nations assessment of the role of humans in global warming has found with “high confidence” that greenhouse gas emissions are at least partly responsible for a host of changes already under way, including longer growing seasons and shrinking glaciers." (New York Times)

"Climate report: World's poorest will suffer most" - "BRUSSELS, Belgium -- The world faces increased hunger and water shortages in the poorest countries, massive floods and avalanches in Asia, and species extinction unless nations adapt to climate change and halt its progress, according to a report approved Friday by an international conference on global warming." (AP)

"Experts warn warming will damage society" - "BRUSSELS - Top climate experts warned on Friday that global warming will cause faster and wider damage than previously forecast, ranging from hunger in Africa and Asia to extinctions and rising ocean levels." (Reuters)

"Latest global warming report urges world to begin adapting" - "The poor may be hit the hardest by climate changes, IPCC report says; calls for stronger action" (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Uncertain Science" - "Delegates from 120 nations have been in Brussels trying to finalize wording for the summary of an upcoming United Nations report on global warming. This is science? No, it's politics." (IBD)

Why do we get all this regurgitated nonsense? May this'll help you to understand:

"The Media Likes Scaring Us, and We Like It" - "I'm embarrassed by my profession. We consumer reporters should warn you about life's important risks, but instead, we mislead you about dubious risks." (John Stossel, Townhall)

Meanwhile: "Easter Bunny Bundles Up" - "Unusually Cold Just About Everywhere In U.S. East Of The Rockies." (CBS News)

"CBC: Global warming: Doomsday called off" - "Although I think that Martin Durkin's The Great Global Warming Swindle is more professional a piece of work, it is not the only documentary of its kind. In 2004, CBC (Canada) has produced a similar 45-minute-long film, and it has been available on YouTube for two weeks or so." (The Reference Frame)

"Inhofe heats global warming debate: Senator says 'Truth' encourages skepticism" - "You'd think the popularity and success of "An Inconvenient Truth" might have silenced global warming skeptics. Well, think again." (Variety)

"It's the Sun, stupid"  -"The The United Nations's IPCC Report comes out today so I thought I'd make a report too. James Carville used to remind Clinton during the '92 campaign that “its the economy, stupid”. I (and many others far smarter than I am) say that on the subject of Global Warming: “its the SUN, stupid” (Watts Up With That?)

"Heat and Cold Related Deaths" - "On Friday, April 6, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will release a report detailing the projected impacts of global warming. This report has been called the heart and soul of the issue. It will provide detail as to what the Panel believes will be the result of their global warming projections. I am sure one of the items mentioned will be increased deaths due to heat waves.

I’ll bet what is not mentioned is that the number of deaths in the United States due to extreme cold is greater than the number due to extreme heat as mentioned in this paper:" (Craig James, WOOD TV)

"EU's Environmental Policy Flounders: Europe has a long way to go to reach its CO2 emissions targets" - "As experts in Brussels wrangle over the wording of a UN report on the impact of global warming, the EU's own climate policy is stagnating. Even the emissions trade, once held up as a model to be emulated, is floundering." (Deutsche Welle)

"Terrorism bringing us closer to God: Pell" - "ISLAMIC terrorism has prompted Australians to re-examine their religious beliefs and has perhaps given God a higher media profile, the Catholic Archbishop, Cardinal George Pell, has said. In a traditional Easter message likely to provoke church moderates and Islamic leaders, Australia's most senior Catholic cleric also took aim at the growing Christian green movement, saying Jesus had nothing to say on global warming." (Sydney Morning Herald)

"Warning: Your Flight is Bad For the Planet's Health" - " British airlines reacted with derision Thursday to a left-leaning think tank's recommendation that the U.K. government introduce tobacco-style "health warnings" on air travel advertising and at airports -- to draw attention to aviation's alleged impact on the earth's climate in a bid to tackle travelers' "addiction to flying." (CNSNews.com)

"Water Torture" - "The government is telling me when I can water my lawn and wash my car.

I'm used to the government telling me that I shouldn't hold up liquor stores, or kill people because they looked at me the wrong way, or that I have to pay taxes, or which side of the road to drive on, or even how deep to bury my irrigation system. I can live with those things. But this notion that I can only water my lawn at certain times seems like a whole new encroachment on my liberty.

Then again, perhaps I shouldn't be surprised. Rather than defending liberties, which was what I was taught that the purpose of government was, it seems that modern government has decided that its role is instead to circumscribe them as much as possible." (Rand Simberg, TCS Daily)

Some of the vested interests pushing 'global warming': "Welch bill would fund carbon 'offsets' with taxpayer money" - "The Pentagon could go "carbon neutral." Federal tax dollars could be used to buy carbon "offsets" if legislation introduced by Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., becomes law -- creating a potential windfall for the blossoming offset industry." (Free Press)

"Vermont Secede? How About Just Peter Welch?" - "Earlier this week, Vermonters Ian Baldwin and Frank Bryan wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post advocating Vermont’s secession from the Union. Taxpayers should respond, “Go ahead, and take Peter Welch with you.” Welch (D., Vt.), Vermont’s newly elected representative, has proposed a bill called the Carbon Neutrality Act of 2007. Should it become law, Congress could order government agencies like the State Department and the Pentagon “to use portions of their budgets to buy greenhouse-gas offsets and renewable-energy credits,” according to a report in the Burlington Free Press." (Stephen Spruiell, NRO)

"Editorial: Ruling on EPA favors Big Energy" - "WASHINGTON - When the Supreme Court ruled Monday that the Environmental Protection Agency can and probably should regulate carbon dioxide as a pollutant, a Washington Post news article said the majority was “siding with environmentalists.”

That’s true, but a quick look at the docket in Massachusetts v. EPA reveals the liberal majority also sided with two large electric utilities that stand to profit from the decision." (Timothy P. Carney, The Examiner)

"SCOTUS Emits Scare Pollution" - "The Supreme Court of the United States has arrogantly ruled that the second most vital gas to sustaining life on Earth is a "pollutant." In doing so, five of nine Justices did the same dirt to climate science Monday that twelve OJ jurors did to forensic science in 1995." (Marc Sheppard, American Thinker)

"Supreme Court Goes Nuclear" - "Who are the big winners and losers in Monday's monumental Supreme Court ruling in Massachusetts v. EPA? A sharply divided 5-4 decision found that the Environmental Protection Agency has the authority under the Clean Air Act to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles -- most notably carbon dioxide -- despite the fact Congress has considered and rejected such proposals in the past. Taking its judicial activism one step further, the Court ruled the agency must provide a sound scientific rationale if it chooses not to regulate them in the future." (Max Schulz, TCS Daily)

April 5, 2007

"Global Warming and the Supremes" - "The Supreme Court attempted to insert itself in the global warming debate this week with its decision in Massachusetts v. EPA, which gives the Federal Environmental Protection Agency authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles." (Steven Milloy, FoxNews.com)

"Global Warming Happens: But is it 'Catastrophic'?" - "OSLO - Likely headlines predicting a global warming "catastrophe", "disaster" or "cataclysm" after a UN report due on Friday risk sapping public willingness to act by making the problem seem too big to tackle, some experts say." (Reuters)

The short answer is, of course, that a rise in planetary mean temperature from about 287 kelvins to maybe 288 or 289 is trivial and largely irrelevant. As it stands the world is only just warm enough to enable us to grow sufficient food to support something more than 6 billion of us, a number which will continue to rise for decades to come. Catastrophe would be inevitable should temperatures decline -- at 286 K or below a lot more people are going to starve as crop productivity collapses.

Bull spit! "Surviving a warmer world: Global forecast is 'mostly dry'" - "Climate change is already being blamed for altered rainfall patterns and shrinking glaciers that provide water for drinking and agriculture. Part 1 of an occasional series." (The Christian Science Monitor)

The whole enhanced greenhouse positive feedback thing is predicated on trivial warming enhancing the hydrologic cycle -- i.e., a warmer, wetter world. Without this hypothetical enhancement warming from a doubling of pre-Industrial carbon dioxide is too trivial to worry about (~0.7 K).

On the matter of whether this hypothetical positive feedback actually exists as modelers like to pretend (in order to fudge their generated output to emulate recent climate history) the answer appears to be unequivocally no -- the world warms about 10 kelvins seasonally (in alternate hemispheres) and yet this is insufficient to cause a self-sustaining feedback loop so there is no realistic possibility of such an occurrence due to trivial CO2 enhancement.

Why haven't the media noticed that the AGW scare industry is playing both sides of the fence? On the one hand they claim hydrologic enhancement as a necessary fundamental component of their imaginary disaster scenario and on the other a hydrologic deficit as a result. Parsing their bizarre little concocted emergency leaves us with part A: a trivial warming will cause an increase in the water cycle which will, in part B: -- wait for it -- cause a decrease in the water cycle. If part A is true then by definition part B is false but if part B is true then part A ceases to operate and the warming enhancement ceases to exist. Make up your minds guys, are we supposed to be heading for a warmer, wetter world or a cooler, dryer one? Note that these scenarios are mutually exclusive and a hotter, dryer world as a result of increased atmospheric carbon dioxide is not a possible outcome.

"A Litmus Test For Global Warming - A Much Overdue Requirement" - "The recently released 2007 IPCC Statement for Policymakers (SPM) has received extensive media coverage, while a range of television shows (e.g. see) and even a Hollywood movie (An Inconvenient Truth) have promoted gloomy forecasts of the climate in coming decades.

We need an unambiguous litmus test which can be accepted by all credible climate scientists, however, to assess the magnitude of global warming on which these alarmist forecasts are based. As discussed in the paper Pielke Sr., R.A., C. Davey, D. Niyogi, S. Fall, J. Steinweg-Woods, K. Hubbard, X. Lin, M. Cai, Y.-K. Lim, H. Li, J. Nielsen-Gammon, K. Gallo, R. Hale, R. Mahmood, R.T. McNider, and P. Blanken, 2007: Unresolved issues with the assessment of multi-decadal global land surface temperature trends. J. Geophys. Res. in press, the global average surface temperature trend has serious uncertainty and bias issues and is not the appropriate metric to use to assess global warming.

As discussed on Climate Science and Scitizen (e.g. see and see), the underlying reason for this aggressive campaign to focus on the human emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil fuels as the main culprit is to promote energy policy changes, not to develop an appropriate comprehensive climate policy." (Climate Science)

"Climate change report is wrong: academic" - "The global scientific report blaming carbon emissions for climate change is based on misconceptions about the Earth's behaviour, says an Australian academic who believes global warming is not caused by mankind.

The respected Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report released earlier this year said it was very likely climate change was the result of greenhouse gases produced by human activity.

Emeritus Professor Lance Endersbee has accused the scientific leaders of trying to stifle debate over the causes of climate change.

Professor Endersbee, a former dean of engineering and pro-vice chancellor at Monash University, says it is highly probable that increased electromagnetic radiation of the sun is behind global warming." (AAP)

"Larry King: Richard Lindzen vs Bill Nye" - "This show from February 2007 is kind of amusing. Larry King has invited Prof Richard Lindzen (MIT), Julian Morris, the boss of the IPN think tank, together with two representatives of the consensus. The contrast between their approaches couldn't be more striking." (The Reference Frame)

"Global warming hits Mars too: study" - "Global warming could be heating Mars four times faster than Earth due to a mutually reinforcing interplay of wind-swept dust and changes in reflected heat from the Sun, according to a study released Wednesday." (AFP)

"Global Warming Will Decimate Biodiversity" - "BERLIN, Apr 4 - Thousands of plant and animal species are disappearing every month under the impact of global warming, leading environmentalists say.

"About 150 species disappear every day," German environment minister Sigmar Gabriel said at the conference of environment ministers of the eight most industrialised countries (G8) in Potsdam, just outside of Berlin Mar. 16-17.

"Humankind is about to delete nature's biological databank at an unknown speed," Gabriel said at the conference opening." (IPS/IFEJ)

"About 150 species disappear every day" Really? Name one.

"Networks Respect 'America's Best-Known Forecaster,' Except When He Talks about Global Warming" - "Networks rush to cover Dr. Bill Gray's hurricane predictions, but leave out the fact that he thinks the world might cool again soon." (Dan Gainor, Business & Media Institute)

Harrumph... "'Water police' crack down in an ever-drier Australia" - "Profligate shower-takers may find their water supply cut to a trickle as country endures a long drought made worse by global warming." (The Christian Science Monitor)

... some part of Australia is always in drought but this is not the source of current insufficiency of supply -- that's strictly a case of dopey governments paying too much heed to antidevelopment Greens and failing to keep infrastructure and storage adequate for rapidly expanding population concentrations around major cities. Dumb decisions to abandon dam building and poor planning by successive state governments is not a result of global warming although that is currently the most common excuse.

"Coping with water scarcity" - "Climate change will require human adaptation. Water harvesting can mitigate predicted water scarcity." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"White House expected to feel the heat from Supreme Court's ruling on global warming" - "The high court rules that the EPA does has the authority to regulate carbon dioxide emissions." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Guilty Until Proven Innocent" - "One of the most appalling recent trends is the way in which certain media outlets, such as the New York Times, have begun referring to carbon dioxide--one of the basic constituents of the atmosphere and a substance we all constantly exhale--as a "pollutant."

By that standard, everything is a pollutant. And that is, in fact, precisely the view that has now been endorsed by a 5-4 majority of the Supreme Court. In Monday's ruling in Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency (available in PDF format here), the court held that the EPA is obliged to treat every substance on earth as a pollutant to be regulated, unless it can demonstrate why that substance is not a pollutant.

Actually, that's not precisely true. The EPA is not required to target literally every chemical component of our environment--just the ones that are produced by humans as part of our economic activity. The court's majority opinion cites the Clean Air Act, which defines an "air pollutant" to be "any physical, chemical...substance...emitted into...the ambient air." Emitted, that is, by humans. The emphasis on the word "any" was added by the court, which goes on to note that this "embraces all airborne compounds of whatever stripe." (Robert Tracinski, RCP)

"What Next on Global Warming?" - "Now that the Supreme Court has decided that the EPA must deal with global warming under the Clean Air Act, what will happen? Not much, if the past is prologue.

The 1970 statute called for reducing all then-known pollutants to healthy levels by 1977. Yet 100 million Americans still breathed unhealthy air even in 1987 -- and many still do. This failure should be laid at the doorstep of Congress: It crafted a law that members could vote for to achieve an end, but left the means -- the rules and regulations -- of achieving that end to others. That way, legislators could take credit for a popular goal, but shift the blame to the EPA for the costs of achieving it. No wonder they voted for the statute all but unanimously.

Even better, Congress could then get additional credit by coming down hard on the EPA when voters complained about the cost of its proposed rules. Not surprisingly the agency found that delay was the easiest course of action under Democratic and Republican presidents alike. When green voters complained that the EPA failed to achieve clean air on schedule, the legislators took more credit by thumping the agency again." (David Schoenbrod, Wall Street Journal)

"US CO2 Action to Take Years Despite Court Ruling" - "NEW YORK - Despite the US Supreme Court's ruling that existing law allows regulators to slow emissions of greenhouse gases, experts believe limits require new legislation that has little chance of passing under the Bush administration." (Reuters)

"The E.P.A. Fantasy: Science Conquers All" - "Now that the Supreme Court has ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate emissions of carbon dioxide from cars, which of these scenarios is most likely?

a) The E.P.A.’s scientists will determine the proper level of emissions, and the agency will promptly order carmakers to comply.

b) The scientists’ recommendations will be ignored by the Bush administration, but promptly adopted by the next president.

c) No matter who is elected, no matter what E.P.A.’s scientists recommend, nothing will happen anytime soon.

If history is any guide, the right answer is c. Ordering the E.P.A. to address global warming may be a legal victory for environment groups, but it will probably just slow progress against global warming. The Environmental Procrastination Agency, as I like to call it, has a hard enough time taking action against routine pollutants. It’s in even worse position to deal with something as complicated as carbon dioxide, because the agency was founded on a fantasy: that scientific experts can transcend both politics and economics." (John Tierney, New York Times)

Hey Arnold, anyone ever mention you're supposed to be working for the people of California? "EU Pins Hopes on US States to Act on Climate Change" - "LONDON - Europe is putting enormous faith in US states to drive federal US action against climate change, the top environmental aide to California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger told Reuters on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Delegates debate urgency of climate change in key policy report" - "Talks snagged in the first several paragraphs over a key sentence that set the tone for the whole report. With 90 percent confidence, the draft says: "Many natural systems, on all continents and in some oceans, are being affected by regional climate changes, particularly temperature increases."

Some countries disputed the level of confidence attached to the statement, and wanted either the wording toned down or the level of certainty reduced, delegates said. The issue was handed to a small "contact group" to resolve." (Associated Press)

And what the heck are WWF doing there?

"We have made too little progress so far," said Hans Verolme, of the World Wildlife Fund for Nature, or WWF, who is attending the sessions. "We want to make sure that what comes out in the end is crisp, well structured and understandable to the layman," he said."

So, they are there as climate researchers? No? Maybe they are representatives of duly elected governments of countries that are signatories to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change? No again? Then how did they get a seat?

"China, US, Russia looking to tone down UN climate report" - "Brussels - Some of the world's biggest polluters have threatened to derail a new UN-backed global climate report, questioning its scientific basis and working to tone down its language before the report is released later this week, according to delegates at the climate conference in Brussels Wednesday." (DPA)

"U.N. Draft Cites Humans in Effects of Climate Shift" - "The latest United Nations assessment of the role of humans in global warming has found with “high confidence” that greenhouse gas emissions are at least partly responsible for a host of changes already under way, including longer growing seasons and shrinking glaciers." (New York Times) | Climate Panel Confident Warming Is Underway: Report to Detail the Role of Humans (Washington Post)

"Republicans demand investigation of U.N. climate-change agency" - "Nine House Republicans Wednesday called for a probe of a United Nations agency that monitors climate change, citing reports of mismanagement." (The Hill)

Why not? They're no use for anything else either: "UN Security Council to Debate Climate Change" - "UNITED NATIONS - The UN Security Council will debate climate change for the first time on April 17, the result of a British campaign to force it onto the agenda of a body that deals with matters of war and peace." (Reuters) | Beckett takes climate change debate to UN (London Times)

"Ads Challenge Al Gore to Debate Global Warming" - "CHICAGO, April 3 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today (Tuesday) a national nonprofit organization began an ad campaign calling on former vice president Al Gore to publicly debate critics of his "alarmist" perspective on global warming.

The first ad ran in today's edition of the Washington Post. Other ads will run in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. The ads feature a challenge from Lord Monckton of Brenchley, who first challenged the former vice president to debate on March 14. That challenge to debate remains unanswered."

[Gore] is getting hundreds of millions of dollars in free publicity from the press and from environmental groups that echo his warning, but he refuses to debate those who say global warming is not a crisis," said Joseph Bast, president of The Heartland Institute. "The public deserves that debate.

"Lord Monckton, a former advisor to Margaret Thatcher, has written several high-profile articles disputing the notion that global warming is a crisis, including one that Gore saw fit to respond to. Like Gore, Monckton is not a scientist or professional economist."

Gore refuses to debate Lord Monckton, just as he refuses to debate a growing list of prominent scientists, economists, novelists, and policy experts," said Bast. "If the scientific debate over global warming is over, as Gore and other climate alarmists so often claim, why is Al Gore afraid to debate?" (The Heartland Institute)

"EU to Re-Check Austria Emissions Data - Barroso" - "BRUSSELS - European Commission and Austrian experts will re-check data that led Brussels to order Vienna to reduce its proposed limit on industrial emissions in 2008-2012, the Commission's president said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

Budget time again? "Global Warming Driving Australian Fish South - Report" - "SYDNEY - Global warming is starting to have a significant impact on Australian marine life, driving fish and seabirds south and threatening coral reefs, Australia's premier science organisation said on Wednesday." (Reuters)

"Climate change has fans in Italian vineyards" - "ROME, April 4, - While politicians and scientists around the world are busy trying to fight climate change, Italian wine producers have never had it so good thanks to global warming, according to new research.

Rising temperatures registered in Italy in the last 20 years have created the best conditions ever for growing grapes from which the most famous Italian wines are made, according to research by Florence University.

"In the last 20 years, temperature rises have had a very positive effect on certain wines," said Simone Orlandini, an agronomy professor at Florence University." (Reuters)

"Welcome to Mediterranean Scotland in 5 years' time?" - "WHILE the international community readies itself for gradual global warming over the next century, a growing number of scientists are beginning to worry that climate change might come much sooner - and be much more catastrophic - than previously thought." (Reuters)

"Man the dikes for climate change" - "A new report on adaptation should push rich nations to help the most vulnerable nations." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"NZ: Shouldering the burden" - "Labour has sensed a rising concern about the way we treat the environment and gone green. National has joined in.

Suddenly, the debate about the causes of climate change has ended. It is too important to wait for more science. We have to act now to save the planet. All very laudable. But it is farmers and foresters who, so far, are being told they will have to shoulder the burden. Understandably, they are getting pretty irate.

The policy has taken over and science has been left behind. Farmers who try to argue the science - and conclude that our Kyoto Agreement commitment is fatally flawed - are told they have missed the bus. And I have been upbraided for saying so in a recent column. But can the bus be stopped? Should it be? It would take a brave politician to repudiate an international agreement." (The Dominion Post)

"Forests no longer allies in climate-change fight" - "OTTAWA–Fearing the effects of forest fires and tree-destroying insect infestations, the federal government has decided against using Canada's forests in the calculations for totalling up the country's greenhouse-gas emissions.

Instead of forests being used as a credit to offset other emissions, the government is now afraid that including forests in the formula could drive up Canada's climate-change burden.

Government scientists made the call after learning of the damage that could come to forests from 2008 to 2012 and realizing the forests could become another source of emissions, pushing Canada even further from its Kyoto targets." (Toronto Star)

Uh-huh... "The Man of the Hour: Leonardo DiCaprio, actor, activist" - "If you go to leonardodicaprio.com, you will find that it is split down the middle. The left half is labeled "Leonardo," and will bring you up-to-date on his filmmaking career (doing rather nicely, with a recent Oscar nomination for his performance in Blood Diamond and, to some tastes, an even stronger performance in best-picture winner The Departed). The right half is labeled "Eco-Site"; it offers guides to various environmental concerns, tips on differences anyone can make, and links to dozens of green organizations and information. Not many stars share their fan face time with gorillas and ferns, but this is the image DiCaprio puts forward to the world: a literal expression of twin passions. A longtime environmentalist—remember his interview in 2000 with then president Bill Clinton for an ABC Earth Day special?—DiCaprio is currently on the boards of both the Natural Resources Defense Council and Global Green USA and has been a tireless promoter of green causes and events. Later this year will see the fusion of his two passions with the release of The 11th Hour, a feature documentary on environmental ills and possible cures, a kind of state-of-the-earth address with gorgeous pictures and eloquent experts, which DiCaprio is producing, co-writing, and narrating. As he says in this remarkable film, as hopeful as it is alarming, "So, we find ourselves on the brink." On the brink of what, it is made plain, is up to us." (Vanity Fair)

Correspondent Dennis A. wonders if it will contain information like this: GLACIERS ICELAND: Approximately 11% of the total area of the country are covered with glaciers. The largest ones are to be found in the south and in the central highlands. The main reason for their location is the much greater precipitation in the South than in the North. At the time, when the country was being settled, the glaciers were small, but they grew fast, when it started getting colder during the latter part of the Middle Ages and up the turn of the 19th century. Then they started retreating until about 1988 and have remained stationary since then...

And in a late April Fool's Dennis informs us David Miliband wants to ban the 4x4 relay from future athletics events to save the planet (we suspect Red Ken will want to increase their parking charge).

In other Arctic news: "Arctic sea ice narrowly missed record low in winter 2007, says University of Colorado team" - "The maximum extent of Arctic sea ice in winter 2007 was the second lowest on satellite record, narrowly missing the 2006 record, according to a team of University of Colorado at Boulder researchers." (University of Colorado at Boulder)

but "MARCH: Near-record cold in Alaska and abundant snow in the southeast" - "Strong and widespread cold described March this year all across Alaska. Temperatures throughout the mainland were more than 8°F below average and the most extreme temperature departures of more than 16°F below average were observed in the central Interior. Areas along the Arctic coast and the southeast panhandle had relative warmth with temperature departures less than 8°F below average. The portions of the state that had extreme cold also received little in the way of precipitation as clear and sunny skies dominated. A location that received more than its fair share of snowfall was Juneau, breaking daily, monthly, and seasonal snowfall records. The vernal equinox, or time of year when daylight and darkness are approximately equal across the earth, occurred on March 20th. This a time of year in Alaska with rapid changes in daylight from day to day and large diurnal temperature ranges." (Alaska Climate Research Center)

"'Green' polar cub new media darling" - "The hottest new celebrity bruin is a polar bear cub named Knut, a recent addition to the Berlin Zoo. And he's making waves around the globe.

The 4-month-old cub – who graces the U.S. cover of Vanity Fair's May "green" issue alongside Leonardo DiCaprio – has already spawned a line of plush toys, postcards and bank cards.

Born at the zoo in December to a mother who soon abandoned him, Knut has become a worldwide favourite, drawing hundreds of journalists from around the globe to his debut last month. Plus, he has dramatically bolstered zoo attendance.

German Environment Minister Sigmar Gabriel has done a photo op with Knut and promises to use him as a mascot for a United Nations biodiversity conference in Bonn next year.

Likewise, Greenpeace has used the bear cub in a poster decrying the effects of burning coal on global warming." (Toronto Star)

Um... this cub's claim to fame was that "animal rights" advocates wanted to kill him.

"US Automakers Could See National CO2 Standard" - "BOSTON - The US auto industry can expect stronger regulations on carbon dioxide emissions, but experts said carmakers may be spared from having to adapt to a patchwork of varying state standards, following a Supreme Court decision, experts said Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Back to Bulb Basics" - "The incandescent light bulb, it appears, is on the way out, and everyone is going to save a lot of money as a result. I'm telling you, it's not worth it." (Jay Bryant, TCS Daily)

From the far-Left, otherwise known as Killjoy Central: "IPPR: 'Put green warnings on adverts for flights'" - "Ads for flights, holidays and cars should carry tobacco-style health warnings to combat the public's "addiction" to polluting transport and reduce climate change, a think-tank recommended yesterday.

The Institute for Public Policy Research also said carbon offsetting charges should be included in fares as part of radical efforts to cut CO2 emissions.

As thousands of Britons prepare to travel abroad for Easter breaks, the IPPR said highly visible warnings, such as "Flying Causes Climate Change", could put some people off air travel.

Forcing car makers to label new vehicles according to their green credentials and advertising the contribution of driving to climate change could also change behaviour, the report concludes." (London Independent)

"Faced with a lack of energy options, Thailand looks to coal" - "The world's dirtiest fuel may be the country's best hope to ensure future energy security." (The Christian Science Monitor)

"Green Activists Beach at Finnish Nuclear Site" - "HELSINKI - Protesters in inflatable boats landed near the site of Finland's new nuclear power station on Wednesday, chaining themselves to the gates and demanding a halt to construction, Greenpeace and plant officials said." (Reuters)

"Japan Nuclear at Full Power Despite Safety Doubts" - "TOKYO - Cover-ups at Japanese nuclear plants have dented public trust, but the government looks set to forge ahead with plans to boost reliance on nuclear power, already providing almost one-third of the country's energy needs." (Reuters)

"US Corn, Wheat Surge as Weather Threatens Crops" - "CHICAGO - US corn and wheat markets rebounded on Wednesday to end up sharply as harsh weather began to move into crop areas and threaten 2007 crop production." (Reuters)

"Inflation could rise on global warming" - "Uncle Sam reckons it has the answer to global warming. Or at least, it reckons it has the solution to what George W calls the United States' addiction to oil. The answer is bio fuel.

Now, setting aside the main arguments against bio fuel (corn based fuel is very energy inefficient, and Brazil is cutting down trees to grow the sugar that fuels many of its cars), there is one other disadvantage of using corn, or other foodstuffs for our fuel.

Because oil, at least oil that doesn't have the word olive or vegetable written in front of it, is not something we tend to eat - or drink.

Corn on the other hand, sees its way onto the dining table.

And so, as the US tries to grow its way out of dependence on oil, the yellow stuff soars in price.

And that, says Neil Woodford, head of UK equities at Invesco Perpetual, could be a factor that keeps inflation up - and makes it difficult for the Bank of England and the Fed to lower the rate of interest." (Find.co.uk)

"3.2 billion-year-old surprise: Earth had strong magnetic field" - "Geophysicists at the University of Rochester announce in today’s issue of Nature that the Earth’s magnetic field was nearly as strong 3.2 billion years ago as it is today. The findings, which are contrary to previous studies, suggest that even in its earliest stages the Earth was already well protected from the solar wind, which can strip away a planet’s atmosphere and bathe its surface in lethal radiation." (University of Rochester)

"Now for the Good News" - "Environmentalists and globalization foes are united in their fear that greater population and consumption of energy, materials, and chemicals accompanying economic growth, technological change and free trade—the mainstays of globalization—degrade human and environmental well-being.

Indeed, the 20th century saw the United States' population multiply by four, income by seven, carbon dioxide emissions by nine, use of materials by 27, and use of chemicals by more than 100.

Yet life expectancy increased from 47 years to 77 years. Onset of major disease such as cancer, heart, and respiratory disease has been postponed between eight and eleven years in the past century. Heart disease and cancer rates have been in rapid decline over the last two decades, and total cancer deaths have actually declined the last two years, despite increases in population. Among the very young, infant mortality has declined from 100 deaths per 1,000 births in 1913 to just seven per 1,000 today." (Indur Goklany, Cato)

Buy this book and help JunkScience.com too.

"Drugging sadness" - "In today’s rush to medicalize virtually every human condition — and thereby require treatment, namely medications — increasing numbers of medical professionals are saying: “Hold on a minute.” Maybe we’re letting ourselves believe there is something wrong with us when we’re simply human." (Junkfood Science)

"Dieting does not work, researchers report" - "Will you lose weight and keep it off if you diet? No, probably not, UCLA researchers report in the April issue of American Psychologist, the journal of the American Psychological Association." (University of California - Los Angeles)

"Companies sign-up for research into foods to enhance health" - "A dozen leading companies are today (3 April) joining forces in a £10 million partnership with the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) to support research aimed at helping the food industry develop products that deliver enhanced health benefits for consumers." (Innovations Report)

"Bt maize crops delivering health, wealth and environmental benefits in Europe" - "DORCHESTER (April 2, 2007) — Although EU plantings of GM insect resistant (Bt) maize were only 65,000 ha in 2006 (in 7 countries), the crops have been delivering income gains to the farmers planting the crops, health benefits for the human and livestock consumers from improved grain quality and environmental gains associated with lower insecticide use, according to a study released today." (PG Economics)

"West Africa to boost food crops with biotechnology" - "The 15 members of the Economic Community of West African States have agreed to use biotechnology to increase food production in the region." (SciDev.Net)

"Purple carnation to be made available to gardeners" - "A purple carnation has become the first genetically modified plant which can be grown by home gardeners.

The carnation was modified by the insertion of genes from other flowers. It also contains a gene which makes it tolerant to a herbicide.

The flowers have been sold commercially for more than a decade, and the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator says there have been no reports of adverse effects on human health or the environment.

Four varieties of the modified carnation are now part of the inaugural listings on the national Genetically Modified Organism Register." (Australian Broadcasting Corp.)

April 4, 2007

"Biting Back" - "AYIM, Ghana -- Death by malaria is the opposite of quick and painless. When a malarial mosquito bites you, she -- only the females feed on humans -- injects a single-celled parasite into your bloodstream. It heads for your liver to camp out, and over a period of 10 days or so continues developing. The pathogen next invades your red blood cells, where it fully matures and reproduces until those cells burst, freeing the parasite to hunt for more red blood cells and continue the cycle.

It's around this time that you fall ill. A fever one day, violent shivering and profuse sweating the next. Your pulse becomes rapid but weak. Soon there's nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, jaundice, anemia. If you're a healthy adult, maybe you can tough it out. But if you're an expectant mother with a compromised immune system, or a young child with an underdeveloped one, the infection is more likely to have its way with you.

Each year, between 350 million and 500 million cases of malaria occur world-wide. About one million people die, the vast majority pregnant women and children under five residing in sub-Sahara Africa. The continent's high temperatures and humidity are what attract the mosquitoes, but underdevelopment and feckless governance are what allow the insect to thrive." (Jason L Riley, Wall Street Journal)

"Has Sadness Been Pathologized?" - "The Washington Post reports on the over-diagnosis of depression. When does the natural flow of sorrow turn into something that requires medication?" (Washington Post)

"$500 Million Pledged to Fight Childhood Obesity" - "The $500 million public health initiative by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is one of the largest ever tried by a private philanthropy." (New York Times)

"Where’s the crisis?" - "For more than a dozen years now, we’ve been given frightening images of a childhood obesity epidemic: an epidemic of immense, sickly children that’s reached pandemic proportions." (Junkfood Science)

"You think your job is stressful..." - "What if your job could be making you fat?" (Junkfood Science)

"Study: Reforestation rich after fires" - "GRANTS PASS, Ore. - Scientists looking at the aftermath of wildfires in the forests of southwestern Oregon and Northern California found that after five to ten years even the most severely burned areas had sprouted plentiful seedlings without any help from man." (Associated Press)

"The green fervour: Is environmentalism the new religion?" - "In his new book Apollo’s Arrow, ambitiously subtitled The Science of Prediction and the Future of Everything, Vancouver-based author and mathematician David Orrell set out to explain why the mathematical models scientists use to predict the weather, the climate and the economy are not getting any better, just more refined in their uncertainty.

What he discovered, in trying to sketch the first principles of prophecy, was the religious nature of modern environmentalism." (Joseph Brean, National Post)

Uh-oh! Reason apparently got caught by Belgians Ban BBQ, actually a late translation of this April 1st piece. h/t Jos Verhulst for the original link following our query yesterday.

"Business of Global Warming Feels a Lot Like Inquisition" - "The heavy condemnatory breathing on the subject of global warming outdoes anything since high moments of the Inquisition. A respectable columnist (Thomas Friedman of The New York Times) opened his essay last week by writing, "Sometimes you read something about this administration that's just so shameful it takes your breath away."

What asphyxiated this critic was the discovery that a White House official had edited "government climate reports to play up uncertainty of a human role in global warming." The correspondent advises that the culprit had been an oil-industry lobbyist before joining the administration, and on leaving it he took a job with Exxon Mobil." (William F. Buckley, RCP)

An Unbearable Greenness of Being by Jeremy Whitlock (March 2007 issue of the Canadian Nuclear Society Bulletin, Vol.28, No.1)

"Greens all talk, no action on global-warming cuts" - "Global warming, Mark Twain might say, is like the weather: Everybody talks about it but nobody ever does anything about it.

About a dozen states and several hundred cities in the United States have pledged to cut their greenhouse gas emissions in an effort to follow the example of Europe and Japan. Many Americans in opinion polls say they are worried about a climate catastrophe, and Congress under Democratic control is vowing for the first time in years to do something to prevent it.

But taking the drastic actions required to cut emissions to levels that many scientists say would be benign for the environment is another thing entirely.

California, for example, recently enacted a law requiring dramatic cuts in greenhouse gases -- principally carbon dioxide from cars and power plants -- but it does not require serious action for 15 years. Energy analysts there say most people are carrying on with business as usual with little thought of changing their driving or other energy-consuming habits.

A recent study by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, an environmental and community activist group, found that "green" cities are making little headway toward meeting their pledges to cut emissions to 7 percent below 1990 levels as targeted by the Kyoto global warming treaty, with most instead reporting their emissions have increased between 7 percent and 27 percent.

"It will be a major challenge" to achieve those goals, said John Bailey, author of the report." (Patrice Hill, Washington Times)

"Is global warming the next big fear?" - "Leslie Carlson remembers fallout shelters and school drills that sent kids diving under their desks. In college, worries about nuclear catastrophe kept her up at night.

But today Carlson, 42, has global warming anxiety.

"I worry about the quality of my children's lives and the connection to nature I love so much," says Carlson, a mother of three and a Portland public relations manager. Recently she was skiing with her children, she says, and surveyed the mountain landscape. "I wondered, 'Are they even going to be able to do this when they grow up?' "

Every generation has its fears. Before the polio vaccine, parents kept their children indoors on hot summer days — no swimming pools, no picnics. Then came the Cold War and its fears of sudden annihilation. For several years after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, terrorism dominated the worry agenda.

But today, concern about climate change appears to be replacing atomic Armageddon or anthrax epidemics. For some families, compost piles have supplanted bomb shelters and duct tape as household essentials.

Recent national polls show the majority of Americans now see global warming as a serious threat." (The Oregonian)

"Two-Thirds of World Worried by Warming, US Lags" - "OSLO - More than two-thirds of the world's people are worried by global warming with Americans among the least anxious even though their nation is the top source of greenhouse gases, an opinion poll showed on Tuesday.

The survey, of more than 14,000 people in 21 nations for BBC World television, showed most respondents around the world reckoned the United States was more to blame that other nations for rising temperatures." (Reuters)

Proving you can fool most of the people some of the time? Funny isn't it? Most people outside the tropics happily live through average temperature changes of >10 °C (18 °F) every year and yet are successfully panicked by activist campaigns involving temperature change too small for people to even detect. Go figure!

"Green Supremes: The Court’s latest ruling could prove very costly" - "Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States dropped a tar baby into the lap of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) when the High Court ruled five to four that the EPA has both motivation and authority to regulate vehicular greenhouse gas emissions under the provisions of the Clean Air Act. What this means is that EPA is now under the gun to move forward with regulating these emissions, whether they do it voluntarily or are once again sued into it. Either way, it will be a very tricky mission indeed." (Kenneth P. Green, American.com)

"EPA revives California's request to set tough emission standards" - "SACRAMENTO - The Bush administration has reopened California's stalled petition seeking to control greenhouse gases after the Supreme Court's ruling this week that the government can regulate emissions from cars.

The action by the Environmental Protection Agency breathes life into California's effort to become the first state to cut tailpipe emissions from cars, light trucks and sport utility vehicles. It also could influence the outcome of an auto industry lawsuit in California to block the state regulations, contained in a 2002 state law.

"We've reviewed the issues within the waiver request," EPA spokeswoman Jennifer Wood said Tuesday. "We're moving forward to the next steps of the process."

The agency next will schedule a public comment period and public hearing." (Associated Press)

"Hot Air Court" - "To green extremists' glee, global warming has joined the long list of issues on which the Supreme Court says courts — not the people's elected leaders — know best." (IBD)

"Bush Holds Line on Global Warming Despite Ruling" - "WASHINGTON - President Bush said Tuesday he planned no new action to impose caps on greenhouse gases blamed for global warming despite the Supreme Court ruling that the Environmental Protection Agency must regulate US emissions." (Reuters)

But SCOTUS didn't rule that the EPA must regulate atmospheric carbon dioxide but rather give a reason why not, which is technically true.

"Bush bows to ruling on greenhouse gas, but seeks to attach two conditions" - "WASHINGTON - President Bush, acknowledging that humans are at least partly responsible for global warming, said Tuesday that he took "very seriously" the Supreme Court's ruling that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must regulate greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles as pollution.

However, the president attached two conditions that appeared likely to retard EPA regulation of carbon dioxide and other gases that trap heat at the Earth's surface: He said that any regulatory program should not slow economic growth, nor should its benefits to the atmosphere be offset by mounting emissions from China, India and other growing economies.

Bush's stance sets up a potential conflict with the Democratic-controlled Congress, which wants stricter regulation of greenhouse gases." (Los Angeles Times)

Another Drive-By Headline on Court CO2 Ruling (Ken Shepherd, News Busters)

"Climate of Opinion" - "Al Gore will have no trouble finding in Monday's Supreme Court ruling more evidence that global warming is a reality, indeed a dire threat.

He will soon say -- you can take this to the bank -- words like: "Now, even a majority of the Supreme Court has recognized the danger of global warming." And he'll be right in the sense that the Court invokes the magic word "consensus" for a physical fact that itself is unproven, unprovable and exists purely in the realm of speculation." (Holman W Jenkins, Jr., Wall Street Journal)

"Another New Paper Which Documents The Uncertainties And Biases Of Land Near-Surface Air Temperature Measurements" - "In 2006, Tom Peterson published the article Peterson, T.C., 2006. Examination of potential biases in air temperature caused by poor station locations. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 87, 1073-1089, in response to our paper Davey, C.A., and R.A. Pielke Sr., 2005: Microclimate exposures of surface-based weather stations - implications for the assessment of long-term temperature trends. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., Vol. 86, No. 4, 497–504. http://blue.atmos.colostate.edu/publications/pdf/R-274.pdf

Our response to the Peterson BAMS article has been accepted and is in press." (Climate Science)

"The global carbon budget -- proper accounting means paying attention to inland waters" - "Life as we know it, from the most basic microbes to our human neighbors, is carbon based. By investigating how carbon cycles through ecosystems, scientists can learn valuable information about food chains, nutrient cycling, and productivity. Because carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, with the ability to influence temperature, an accurate global carbon budget is needed to address climate change." (Institute of Ecosystem Studies)

Representative eye-roller: "Is Earth near its 'tipping points' from global warming?" - "Earth is spinning toward many points of no return from the damage of global warming, after which disease, desolation and famine are inevitable, say scientists involved in an international report due Friday on the effects of climate change.

Opinions vary about how long it will take to reach those "tipping points" and whether attempts to cut planet-warming gases churned out by power plants, vehicles and other human industry can slow, halt or reverse the harmful effects in coming decades. Some suggest it might be cheaper for society to adapt to the changing climate than to roll back the pace of warming.

But in the report, the second of three this year by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, thousands of climate scientists and representatives of more than 100 nations, including the USA, present in the most stark terms the "key global risks" — serious environmental consequences from the changing climate — that threaten humanity.

"It's time (a report) puts people on the planet into the picture" of global warming, says economist Gary Yohe of Wesleyan University, a lead author of the report." (Dan Vergano and Patrick O'Driscoll, USA TODAY)

"Australia Tells EU to Do More on Emissions" - "CANBERRA - Australia called on the European Union on Tuesday to do more to cut its own greenhouse emissions before lecturing Kyoto sceptics Australia and the United States about climate change." (Reuters)

"Australia: Carbon tax 'would cut emissions'" - "A MAJOR government advisory body said today a carbon tax could be introduced as a first step in cutting greenhouse emissions in Australia.

"Due to its administrative simplicity, a tax has some merit as a transitional tool and could be introduced in a revenue neutral way," the Productivity Commission said in a submission to the Prime Minister's task force on emissions trading.

Prime Minister John Howard has opposed the introduction of a tax to curb emissions and instead left the door open to a national trading scheme." (AAP)

"Smoke alarm: EU shows carbon trading is not cutting emissions" - "Some US states want their own 'cap and trade' scheme but the evidence is proving that permits are so generous they fail to curb industry." (The Guardian)

"Queen Elizabeth Seeks to Cut Carbon Footprint" - "LONDON - Britain's Queen Elizabeth is trying to trim her carbon footprint." (Reuters)

Get rid of Charlie then and do the world a real favor.

"Climate change: it’s all or nothing" - "Environmentalists are laying into the government over figures showing that Britain's carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions now stand at 560m tonnes a year.

Put so starkly, it does sound like Britain is dumping an awful lot of pollution into the atmosphere. But it's ten times less than either the US or China are pumping out - and in any case amounts to just 0.02 per cent of all the CO2 in the atmosphere.

Normally, ministers would seize on such comparisons to "set the figures in context". But as they have doubtless realised, making such comparisons is a bad idea for political parties keen to garner green votes." (The First Post)

Paul Epstein at it again: "Itchy eyes? Sneezing? Get used to it!" - "People, even pets, with allergies suffer as pollen levels soar coast to coast

Scientists say the problem is actually man-made. "Carbon dioxide — burning fossil fuels — is stimulating plants to make more pollen," says Paul R. Epstein with the Center for Health and Global Environment at Harvard University. "And the weeds love this stuff." (NBC News)

Only Pauley could see the biosphere thriving and conclude that means things are bad.

Then again, there's always NS: "Snowy invaders point to Arctic thaw" - "IN FEBRUARY, birders from across Washington state flocked to the town of Stanwood, population 5068, for the area's second annual Snow Goose Festival. Set up to boost the local economy, events this year included a pancake breakfast, birdwatching tours, wine tasting and live music from a local bluegrass band.

For festival organiser Laura Byers, the big attraction is the sheer number of geese that come to call at Stanwood – a number that has skyrocketed in recent years. "The fields are white with them," she says. But the booming population is not universally welcome, and may in fact be a stark warning of trouble brewing elsewhere: global warming." (New Scientist)

"Arctic Replenished Very Little Thick Sea Ice in 2005" - "A new NASA study has found that in 2005 the Arctic replaced very little of the thick sea ice it normally loses and replenishes each year. Replenishment of this thick, perennial sea ice each year is essential to the maintenance and stability of the Arctic summer ice cover." (NASA)

From CO2 Science this week:

Science vs. Gore on Polar Ice Wastage and Sea Level Change: Which entity's perspective is the more correct?

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from GRIP Ice Core, Greenland Summit. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Range Expansion (Plants - Europe): As atmospheric temperatures and CO 2 concentrations rose over the past century, many species of plants found throughout Europe expanded their ranges - poleward in latitude and upward in altitude - thereby increasing the species richness of many ecosystems.

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO 2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Japanese Larch, Japanese Red Pine, Korean Pine, and Partridge Pea.

Journal Reviews:
Earth's Geomagnetic Field Intensity and Global Climate Change: What is the relationship between the two?

Solar Forcing of Holocene Climate: It has produced significantly different - and sometimes completely opposite - changes in rainfall in different parts of the world in the past, and it may currently be doing so again.

Landfast Ice of Canada's Hudson Bay Region: Its growing thickness contradicts climate-model-based expectations.

Photosynthetic Adjustments to High Temperatures in C 4 Plants: What are they? ... and what do they imply about the response of C 4 plants to global warming?

Impact of Warming on the Photosynthetic Response of Sour Orange Trees to Atmospheric CO 2 Enrichment: What does it imply about the climate-alarmist effort to limit anthropogenic CO 2 emissions?

Newnan, GA Temperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Newnan, GA. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Newnan's mean annual temperature has cooled by 2.56 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (co2science.org)

"Antarctic fossil prompts rethink about amphibian history" - "The fossilised remains of an amphibian which lived more than 245 million years ago have been found in Antarctica, suggesting that the climate during much of the Triassic era was remarkably balmy." (AFP)

"A CEO With A Spine" - "The New York Coal Trade Association, headquartered in New York City, recently held its 94th annual banquet and meeting at the New York Hilton. One of the guest speakers was Bob Murray, founder and CEO of Murray Energy Corporation and probably one of the few CEOs brave enough to challenge the militant climate control movement that threatens the future of America's economy. In his speech, he dared to say that he regards Al Gore as the shaman of global doom and gloom. He is not joking when he says, "He is more dangerous than his global warming."

Unlike many heads of corporations who are taking their companies on that long green mile and caving in to the demands of environmental militants, Mr. Murray is fighting tooth and nail for what he says is, "the little guy that nobody cares about." (Alicia Colon, New York Sun)

"EU Lighting Needs Time to Go Eco-Friendly - Philips" - "BRUSSELS - European Union plans to make homes, offices and streets use energy-efficient lighting by the end of the decade are unrealistic, the world's biggest lightbulb maker said on Tuesday." (Reuters)

"Nuclear power revisited in state" - "Sacramento -- A small but growing movement to promote nuclear power construction, dormant for three decades, is working to overturn the state's ban on new reactors as worries about climate change have softened voters' opposition to new plants.

A legislator from Southern California has introduced a bill to lift the state's ban on new nuclear power plants. The bill would give a boost to plans by investors to bring nuclear power to the heart of the San Joaquin Valley." (SF Chronicle)

"Weighing the financial risks of nuclear power" - "Enticed by the gleam of government subsidies, many companies are rushing to invest in nuclear power, expecting that new technology and safer reactors will make them as good an investment as other types of power plants." (UC Berkeley)

Right... "Flying wind farms" - "Power generation: If people object to wind farms cluttering up the countryside, one answer might be to put them in the air." (Economist.com)

... they'll use really long extension cords? Nah! Beam the power down by microwave transmission -- no one will worry about that kind of EMF, eh?

Eyesore Britain: "Planning curbs on domestic green energy may be eased" - "Green-minded householders will be allowed to put up solar panels and wind turbines without applying for planning permission under plans to be announced today by Ruth Kelly." (The Guardian)

Just what no one needed, standards sacrificed on the altar of Green stupidity.

Imagine that... "Oil firms' renewable investments lag image" - "LONDON - Oil majors love to boast about their renewable energy activities but the glossy advertisements showing windmills and solar panels often mask modest investments and even skepticism." (Reuters)

"Canada Biodiesel Must Withstand Cold Weather - Shell" - "WINNIPEG, Manitoba - Canada's fledgling biodiesel industry must prove its fuel additive can work in frigid winter weather before users can meet new government targets, an official with Shell Canada Ltd. said Monday." (Reuters)

The result of Green BS campaigns and gullible politicians: "Palm oil: the biofuel of the future driving an ecological disaster now" - "The numbers are damning. Within 15 years 98% of the rainforests of Indonesia and Malaysia will be gone, little more than a footnote in history. With them will disappear some of the world's most important wildlife species, victims of the rapacious destruction of their habitat in what conservationists see as a lost cause.

Yet this gloomy script was supposed to have included a small but significant glimmer of hope. Oil palm for biofuel was to have been one of the best solutions in saving the planet from greenhouse gases and global warming. Instead the forests are being torn down in the headlong rush to boost palm oil production." (The Guardian)

"Biofuels in Africa: Investment Boon or Food Threat?" - "JOHANNESBURG - Africa's vast arable lands have the potential to rival top agricultural nations like the United States in supplying biofuels to a world seeking cleaner energy sources.

But using land reserved for food production to supply biofuel demand could squeeze food supplies in a region vulnerable to shortages. It could also hurt poor consumers if the biofuel boom continues to push food prices higher." (Reuters)

"Biofusion hopeful on hydrogen" - "FORGET nuclear, coal and gas fuelled power stations. According to Sheffield University spin-off Biofusion, the future lies in hydrogen.

Biofusion, the company that commercialises the life sciences work of Sheffield University, is launching a new company called BioHydrogen that has developed an ingenious method of harnessing hydrogen from fermentable sugars.

The scientists behind Biofusion have patented a method of genetically modifying bacteria. These super bugs have the ability to create huge amounts of hydrogen when they eat glucose.

According to Biofusion's chief executive David Baynes, the genetically modified bacteria can produce six times more hydrogen than their natural counterparts.

The plan is to refine the genetics to the stage where they can produce 10 times the amount of normal bacteria." (Yorkshire Post)

Better late than never, we guess: "No Longer Waiting for Rain, an Arid West Takes Action" - "Some $2.5 billion in water projects are planned, the biggest expansion in the West’s quest for water in decades." (New York Times)

"Monsanto seeks to stop hormone claims" - "The company that created an artificial growth hormone widely used to increase milk production called on the U.S. government Tuesday to clamp down on dairy companies that advertise "hormone-free" milk as healthier, saying there's no difference between milk from cows treated with the hormone and those that aren't." (Star Tribune)

"New research agreement to boost rice production, avoid food shortages in Indonesia" - "Jakarta, Indonesia – Efforts by Indonesia to avoid food shortages by increasing its rice production have received an important boost with the signing of a new agreement to help the nation's millions of poor rice farmers with new technologies." (International Rice Research Institute)

"GMO taro pits Hawaiians against some scientists" - "Both scientists and Native Hawaiians want to save the ancient taro plant from an uncertain future, but they strongly disagree on whether genetic modification is the answer." (Associated Press)

"Firm in GM insulin breakthrough" - "Insulin produced by genetically modified plants - with a human gene added - could be on the market in three years, a Canadian company has claimed. Sembiosys said it has made scientific breakthroughs and found a short cut through current drug regulations. The firm's CEO Andrew Baum said his company could become one of the first to sell a plant-based pharmaceutical. However, critics believe that these products pose greater environmental and health risks than GM food crops." (BBC)

"Monsanto's Transgenic Soya Comes To Chile: Failure To Legislate Leaves Door Open To GM Products" - "(April 4, 2007) Monstanto, one of the world’s leading transgenic seed producers, announced plans to cultivate Chile’s first genetically modified (GM) soya bean at the Expoagro 2007 show in Argentina last week. The introduction of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the Chilean farming industry represents another step backwards from President Michelle Bachelet’s 2005 election campaign pledge “to not open the country to commercial transgenic crops.” (Santiago Times)

April 3, 2007

"High Court Tells EPA to Consider Global Warming Steps" - "April 2 -- The U.S. Supreme Court ordered Bush administration environmental officials to reconsider their refusal to regulate greenhouse-gas emissions, giving a boost to advocates of stronger action against global warming.

The justices, voting 5-4, today said the Environmental Protection Agency didn't follow the requirements of the Clean Air Act in 2003 when it opted not to order cuts in carbon emissions from new cars and trucks." (Bloomberg)

Supreme Court orders EPA to revisit global warming: Click to read the Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. EPA.

Bottom line: "If the scientific uncertainty is so profound that it precludes the EPA from making a reasoned judgment as to whether greenhouse gases contribute to global warming, it must say so." -- this is true and it's high time we had this out in the open. Given that we cannot yet determine even the net sign of feedbacks within the climate system we cannot determine whether or not increased atmospheric carbon dioxide emissions are really warming the planet. The EPA can not tweak planetary temperature by issuing rules on carbon dioxide emissions (nor can anyone else) and so should plainly state this as the reason the requested remedy is unavailable.

Technically the judgment appears perfectly correct even if the underlying case is absurd (now even water vapor and clouds must be considered 'pollution' since water vapor is the most important greenhouse gas -- silly game, innit guv'nor?).

"Jolly Green Justices" - "The current Supreme Court is a talented group of jurists, but until yesterday we didn't think their expertise ran to climatology. The Justices would have done better in their big global warming decision if they'd stuck more closely to the law.

They showed no such modesty. In Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency, a narrow majority managed to diminish the rules of judicial standing, rewrite the definition of "pollutant" under the Clean Air Act, and dramatically curtail the decision-making authority of the executive branch. And judging from Justice John Paul Stevens's 5-4 majority decision, they did so because the five Justices are personally anxious about rising temperatures. As Justice Antonin Scalia noted in dissent, the "Court's alarm over global warming" has led it to substitute "its own desired outcome" for the EPA's judgment." (Wall Street Journal)

"The Dissenting Opinion" - "Here is the concluding section of the dissenting opinion of Chief Justice Roberts (and joined by Justices Scalia, Thomas, and Alito) to the Supreme Court’s ruling that carbon dioxide regulation falls under the EPA’s purview under the Clean Air Act." (WCR)

"CO2 becomes an air pollutant" - "The Supreme Court has decided that the carbon dioxide is a pollutant in the dispute Massachusetts vs EPA, according to the Clean Air Act. In a stunning 5:4 decision in which five activist judges - including Anthony Kennedy, a swing vote - defeated Roberts, Scalia, Alito, and Thomas who realize very well that the states had no standing, the second most important compound that defines life after water (H2O) has been put on equal footing with carcinogens." (The Reference Frame)

"Supreme Court Rules That The EPA Can Regulate CO2 Emissions" - "As reported by USA Today on April 2 2007, “By a bitterly divided vote, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that the Environmental Protection Agency has authority to regulate vehicle emissions that cause global warming.” (Climate Science)

"Ruling in Mass v EPA" - "I haven’t read the opinion yet, but I’ve read a lot of case reports and rather enjoy them. What you should look for in this type of decision is whether the judges have picked the narrowest possible thing to rule on - that’s what they usually do and there’s a reason why they do. They tend to worry about repercussions of rulings in this case on other unrelated matters - there’s an old saying “Hard facts make bad law”. They have to consider not just climate change policy, but how this ruling on regulatory responsibility will be levered up in every other contentious regulatory issues." (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

"Warming Activists Hail High Court Ruling" - "WASHINGTON - In a decision hailed by environmental activists as a milestone in the fight to curb global warming, the U.S. Supreme Court Monday ruled that the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has the authority to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change." (IPS)

"Statement on Supreme Court Ruling on Global Warming in Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency" - "The Supreme Court's decision is a victory for the bad guys in the battle over whether the American people will be governed by accountable elected officials or unaccountable judges. Unable to convince the Senate to vote upon, let alone ratify, the Kyoto global warming treaty, the left has adopted the Kyoto-by-stealth strategy of asking judges to force its version of science into the pocketbooks of the American people.

Shame on them. And shame on the five Justices who agreed to do so today." (National Center for Public Policy Research)

"Ruling Undermines Lawsuits Opposing Emissions Controls" - "The Supreme Court ruling on carbon dioxide emissions gave new momentum to Congressional efforts to control heat-trapping gases linked to climate change." (New York Times)

Supreme Court Split Decision Opens Door to EPA Power Grab - Ominous Shift in Control from Congress to Bureaucracy (Ivan Osorio, CEI)

Late April Fool? "Belgium to impose tax on barbequing to fight global warming" - "BRUSSELS, April 3 - The government of Belgium's French-speaking region of Wallonia, which has a population of about 4 million, has approved a tax on barbequing, local media reported. Experts said that between 50 and 100 grams of CO2, a so-called greenhouse gas, is emitted during barbequing. Beginning June 2007, residents of Wallonia will have to pay 20 euros for a grilling session. The local authorities plan to monitor compliance with the new tax legislation from helicopters, whose thermal sensors will detect burning grills. Scientists believe CO2 emissions are a major cause of global warming." (RIA Novosti)

"The environmental monster in the mirror" - "Hollywood, like the United States itself, has always needed 'bad guys'. First there were the 'Red Indians', who scalped for pleasure and kidnapped white women to abuse unspeakably in their teepees; then came the gangsters who laughed as their bullets ripped through their victims; the Nazis and Japs who hardly needed to be demonised to fuel the war effort; more recently there have been drug lords and Arab terrorists.

Now Hollywood has discovered an enemy more dangerous, more deadly and more diabolical than any it has created before. This enemy stares right back at you when you look in the mirror. Yes folks, you are the enemy, you, evil polluter of the Earth." (The First Post)

There's money in it: "Al Gore to give global warming presentation in Tempe" - "While Gore is in Tempe for the presentation, he will meet with major donors who are financing his 100-thousand dollar speaking fee. Gore will not meet with students." (Associated Press)

"Judge’s Ruling Demonstrates Danger of Al Gore’s Global Warming Campaign" - "For those skeptical about man’s role in climate change who haven’t grown concerned about the media’s fascination with this issue, and the propaganda being spread by soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore and his schlockumentary “An Inconvenient Truth,” this report by the Associated Press Saturday should open your eyes" (Noel Sheppard, News Busters)

INTERVIEW: PAUL DRIESSEN Gore's Policies Keep Africa in the Dark (Executive Intelligence Review)

"Bleak Warning Expected As UN Climate Scientists Meet" - "The world's top climate scientists gathered here Monday to hammer out the summary of a massive report that predicts dire consequences from global warming, especially for poor nations and species diversity." (AFP)

"The History of the IPCC And Recommendations For Unbiased Science Assessments" - "There is an informative article on the history of the IPCC in the journal Isuma. The article is entitled “Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the Role of Science in Policy” authored by James R. Bruce. Jim Bruce is Senior Associate, Global Change Strategies International and former Co-Chair of WGIII of the IPCC.

The article has “Some lessons for science assessments” which are listed below. This Climate Science weblog addresses whether the IPCC assessments have learned the appropriate lessons." (Climate Science)

Curious... "Climate Change Sceptics Say Humans Not to Blame" - "A group of scientists is fighting a rearguard action to challenge mainstream evidence that humans are to blame for climate change." (Reuters)

... Reuters is now publishing rebuttals to skeptic views?

"NY Times and ABC: Global Warming Inevitable, So Pay Up" - "'World News' offers 'frightening' global warming story; Times calls for rich countries to pay more for future damage." (Julia A. Seymour, Business & Media Institute)

"Reports From Four Fronts in the War on Warming" - "There is a growing consensus that the first world owes the third world a climate debt." (New York Times)

So... "Australia's Southwest Getting Hotter and Drier - Study" - "SYDNEY - Western Australia's southwest, an important agricultural region that also contains one of Australia's largest cities, would continue to get hotter and drier because of climate change, a government-backed study said." (Reuters)

... now it's climate change, eh? Last we heard it was land clearance that so dramatically altered cloud formation and precipitation.

"The Foundations of Sand of the IPCC CO2 Historic Records" - "I have been kindly sent Ernst Beck's Summary of his Paper - please note updated supplementing webpage giving new and further information concerning the actual paper. http://www.biokurs.de/treibhaus/180CO2_supp.htm. It is explosive in its implications." (An Englishman's castle)

"Global Warming and California Agriculture" - "The latest news continues to be full of stories about global warming, and one of the constant pillars of the apocalypse is that agricultural yields will substantially decline due to higher temperatures, increased drought, spread of diseases, invasion of weeds, destruction of soil nutrients, and … you name it! We did a quick search of the internet for “Global Warming and Agriculture” and found more than 5,000,000 websites, and as we began sampling the sites, we encountered an overwhelming amount of bad news. Occasionally, we would find sarcastic comments about “growing barley in Iceland,” but overall, we found gloomy news about our agricultural future. Of course, within the first two sites visited, we learned that “the region likely to be worst affected is Africa, both because its geography makes it particularly vulnerable, and because seventy percent of the population rely on rain-fed agriculture for their livelihoods.” (WCR)

D'oh! "Americas Targeted By Global Warming From North To South" - "Some regions of north America -- especially the northernmost reaches of Canada and Alaska -- will be severely challenged. But overall the continent is less vulnerable than others, because it has the resources and skills to adapt more easily than poorer counterparts." (AFP) [em added]

Translation: development and wealth generation are protective (as we've been pointing out for years) and so the appropriate precautionary course is to maximize development and wealth generation (in the developed world to maintain markets needed by the developing regions to generate wealth too). The misanthropic AGW brigade's preferred actions are the antithesis of any rational or humanitarian response. Anything which increases energy cost is just dead wrong.

Don't follow the comment above? Perhaps this'll help: "A Zero-Sum Wealth Quiz" - "One of the really bad ideas that drive some of the worst government actions is the notion that wealth is somehow fixed, and that by implication all wealth is acquired at someone else's expense. I am working on my annual tax-day post on the zero sum fallacy, but in the mean time here is a brief quiz." (Coyote Blog)

Another space cadet disaster piece: "Ways to Avoid a Climate Catastrophe" - "The rapid change in the world's climate and shrinking oil and natural gas reserves are forcing a radical shift in the way we think about energy. Declining prosperity seems unavoidable unless the global community chooses a more sustainable approach to producing and consuming energy." (Der Spiegel)

"In Alarmist Report, CBS's Scott Pelley Ignores Scientist's Key Findings" - "60 Minutes" resident global warming alarmist Scott Pelley, who compared global warming skeptics to Holocaust deniers, reported on another piece on the April 1 edition. Pelley featured a scientist and self proclaimed former skeptic, and a University of Maine scientist without telling his full story." (News Busters)

"EU carbon trading scheme failing to curb emissions from big polluters" - "Europe's big polluters pumped more climate-changing gases into the atmosphere in 2006 than during the previous year, according to figures that show the EU's carbon trading system failing to deliver curbs. Critics said the data underlined the gap between the rhetoric of European leaders, who have promised to cut C02 emissions by one-fifth by 2020, and the reality of delivering reductions." (London Independent)

No? Duh! "EU 2006 Carbon Data Show Emission Targets Too Lax" - "BRUSSELS - The European Union handed out too many free emissions permits to heavy industry in 2006, undermining the first phase of the bloc's flagship weapon against climate change, preliminary data showed on Monday." (Reuters)

"EU Carbon Market Gives Emitters Easy Ride in 2006" - "BRUSSELS/LONDON - European industry's emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide in 2006 once again undercut their quota of free emissions permits, as in 2005, preliminary data showed on Monday.

The figures further undermined the 27-nation bloc's flagship weapon against climate change, although Brussels was quick to state that the European Union was still on track to meet its emissions targets under the Kyoto Protocol on global warming." (Reuters)

"EU Slams United States, Australia on Climate Change" - "BRUSSELS - The European Union accused the United States and Australia on Monday of hampering international efforts to tackle climate change.

"We expect ... the United States to cooperate closer and not to continue having a negative attitude in international negotiations," Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas told delegates at a United Nations-sponsored meeting to review a report on the regional effects of rising global temperatures.

"It is absolutely necessary that they move because otherwise other countries, especially the developing countries, do not have any reason to move," he said." (Reuters)

Just because Europe wants to take painful medicine to address the phantom menace doesn't mean everyone else is stupid.

"Howard hits back at EU over Kyoto" - "Prime Minister John Howard says the European Union should clean up its own affairs before lecturing Australia about greenhouse gas emissions." (AAP)

When Dimos says "I cannot comprehend" we believe him.

"Costello wary of climate change models" - "Federal Treasurer Peter Costello says the economic impact of climate change was not included in the latest intergenerational report because current modelling systems can't deliver accurate figures." (AAP)

"Stern words, but short shrift for the economics of climate change" - "BRITISH economist Sir Nicholas Stern made a flying visit to Australia last week. Via, apparently, South Africa, India and Indonesia. So much for carbon-neutral burning the oil at midnight, and all the other hours through the day.

Sir Nicholas is the putative author of the 700-page The Stern Review, the Economics of Climate Change, which purports to establish the world will be better off pre-emptively reducing carbon-based greenhouse gas emissions, than living with them.

That's, to stress, establish supposedly in entirely unemotional analytical terms. Its bottom line: cutting emissions will cost 1 per cent of global GDP. It will "save" somewhere between 5 and 20 per cent of global GDP.

Yet, in watching Sir Nicholas at the National Press Club and reading the reports of his press interviews, he had almost nothing to say about the economics of climate change." (Terry McCrann, The Australian)

"UK report calls for wider climate change fight" - "LONDON - The world needs to fight more polluting gases, and not just focus on carbon emissions, in the fight against climate change, according to a report published by the UK's Air Quality Expert Group (AQEG) on Monday.

While European Union climate change policies focus on reducing carbon emissions, the UK government commissioned report says the effects of a whole range of other gases and other emissions must be taken more seriously." (Reuters)

Rightly but... "GOP skeptical of global warming" - "Last year, the National Journal asked a group of Republican senators and House members: "Do you think it's been proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the Earth is warming because of man-made problems?" Of the respondents, 23 percent said yes, 77 percent said no. In the year since that poll, of course, global warming has seized a massive amount of public attention. The U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a study, with input from 2,000 scientists worldwide, finding that the certainty on man-made global warming had risen to 90 percent.

So, the magazine asked the question again last month. The results?

Only 13 percent of Republicans agreed that global warming has been proved. As the evidence for global warming gets stronger, Republicans are getting more skeptical." (Times Union)

... only if for the right reasons -- if this an ideological result then it's as bad as the eco-theistic devotion to global warming and equally wrong.

"Ontario to join U.S. green plan" - "Climate pact with 9 states cheered south of border but panned as political ploy at home." (Toronto Star)

"'Night-shining' clouds bring mystery" - "Since their discovery 120 years ago, strangely luminescent clouds called noctilucent clouds have been creeping slowly toward the equator.

Once confined to Earth's poles, the bizarre clouds have now been spotted above central Colorado, and they appear to be getting brighter and more numerous, too, said David Rusch, a University of Colorado atmospheric scientist.

This month, NASA plans to launch the $110 million AIM (Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere) mission to measure noctilucent clouds and the circumstances in which they form - which may be linked to climate change." (Denver Post)

"Weathermen at war over storm" - "Two of the country's best-known weathermen have fallen out as the storm between MetService and the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (Niwa) intensifies." (The Press)

Wonder if they mean 'phytoplankton'? "Drought may reduce global warming, researcher says" - "A Queensland researcher says the drought in Australia could be helping to reduce global warming. The University of Southern Queensland's Dr Harry Butler is studying photoplankton blooms in the Southern Ocean and their ability to absorb carbon dioxide. Dr Butler says they are trying to find out if dust blown into the ocean is feeding the photoplankton. "Dust which is iron rich is being deposited into the ocean and what's happening is that's providing the nutrients for this plankton growth," he said. "This plankton is absorbing CO2 from the atmosphere and causing a CO2 sink which is a role in global cooling and looking at slowing down climate change." (Australian Broadcasting Corp)

No matter, these guys think they can cash in on carbon hysteria by farming ocean credits:) "Project aims to 'seed' oceans to heal them" - "Trees may not sprout from the ocean, but that doesn't stop one expert from talking about the need to save the ocean's "forests."

That's how Noel Brown, former head of the United Nations Environment Programme, refers to the oceans' supply of plankton, the tiny plant life that is the base of the ocean's food chain. It feeds most of the world's marine life and also removes half of the world's carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Brown says plankton populations are beginning to starve because of a decrease in naturally occurring dust storms on land that deliver micronutrients of iron that plankton need to survive. In addition, research has shown that warming surface temperatures are keeping vital nutrients from the oceans' depths from reaching plankton populations. Brown says the potential loss of these avenues for iron to reach the plankton is an "impending crisis." (USA TODAY)

"La Niña a possibility as El Niño neutralizes" - "According to the latest WMO El Niño/La Niña Update issued on 30 March, the El Niño event of the latter half of 2006 has ended and Pacific basin-wide conditions are now neutral.

Despite difficulties in predicting developments at this time of year, there are sufficient indications to suggest that a transition to La Niña has recently become a distinct possibility. This transition has some, though weak, chances of developing within the next two-three months." (WMO)

"US Top Court Overturns Duke Clean Air Law Ruling" - "WASHINGTON - A unanimous Supreme Court Monday overturned a lower court's ruling that would have allowed utility Duke Energy Corp. to modernize aging coal-fired power plants without reducing air pollutants.

The case had been closely watched by the industry because it could determine whether US electric utilities must spend billions of dollars on emission-reduction equipment and whether similar lawsuits against other US utilities for alleged noncompliance with the Clean Air Act will succeed.

About half of the nation's electricity comes from coal plants, many of which have been operating for decades and need to be overhauled to stay out of mothballs." (Reuters)


"Emissions-linked parking in force" - "A scheme charging drivers for residents' parking permits according to the level of their car emissions has come into force in a London borough. Owners of high carbon dioxide-emitting vehicles in Richmond, south-west London, will now pay up to three times the normal residential parking fees." (BBC)

"BRAZIL-US: A Giant Shadow Over Ethanol Politics" - "RIO DE JANEIRO - The friendship between Presidents Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil and George W. Bush of the United States was of little consequence while it was purely personal. But everything has changed, now that ethanol binds them together in an alliance with global effects on economics, geopolitics and the environment." (IPS)

"CHAD: A Solution to Deforestation That Some Also View as a Problem" - "N'DJAMENA, Apr 2 - It's affordable, and central to stopping deforestation in Chad. But, butane gas has a long way to go before it becomes a household staple in this Sahelian country: many Chadians have a fixed belief that gas is simply too dangerous to use." (IPS)

"Two faces to speedy medicine approval" - "When a French pharmaceutical company teamed up with a Swiss charity last month to launch a low-cost malaria drug for Africa, the news caused as much concern as rejoicing among international health experts.

Asaq — named after its two constituents, the drugs artesunate and amodiaquine, combined into a single pill — offers a relatively affordable and simple treatment for a parasite that kills more than 1-million people a year.

To its champions, it marks a first success for one of a growing number of "product development partnerships", twinning the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) in Geneva, a nonprofit organisation that co-ordinates academic research groups, with Sanofi-Aventis, the French pharmaceuticals producer.

But to its critics, Asaq is a step backwards, because its developers bypassed the stringent standards of developed-world regulators and instead gained quick approval in Morocco, based on relatively limited scientific data.

At the core of the debate is the tension between a desire to save as many lives as quickly as possible and a need to ensure patients in the developing world do not receive medicines of poorer quality and efficacy than would be approved in richer countries." (Andrew Jack, Financial Times)

"On the trail of a cure: reality and rhetoric on treating malaria" (.pdf) - "Despite a record level of philanthropic and multilateral funding for malaria, there are still significant problems in the procurement and delivery of malaria drugs. These easily solvable problems are undermining the effectiveness of donor funding." (Roger Bate, CFD)

"Future weapons against malaria - and the one we have now" - "O death, where is thy sting? Far too often it comes at the end of a mosquito's proboscis. The worst mosquito-borne disease, malaria, infects about 400 million people worldwide each year (90 percent in sub-Saharan Africa) and kills about 1.3 million of them. Compare that to the histrionics we've suffered over avian flu, which as of 2 April had infected 25 people and killed 12 this year. Or SARS, which killed 774 people worldwide before petering out.

As I write in TCS Daily, biotechnology may eventually come to the rescue. Scientists have announced they've built a better mosquito, one that doesn't become infected with the parasite that causes malaria. Ultimately, it's hoped, these mosquitoes will outbreed natural ones. A biotech malaria vaccine is also in the works. Aye, but there's the rub. A malaria vaccine has been in the works for decades. For now what we need is something that's tried and true and readily available. Yes, that means insecticides and yes that means DDT. Fortunately, pro-DDT activists are finally starting to gain the upper hand over spoiled brat environmentalists who think the deaths of black- and brown-skinned people don't count and know nothing more about DDT than that Rachel Carson made all sorts of horrible claims about it of which none have proved true." (Michael Fumento)

"Chernobyl Radiation Equal to Everyday Risks - Study" - "LONDON - The risk of survivors of the Chernobyl accident dying early is far less than supposed, ranking about the same as exposure to air pollution or passive smoking, according to new research published on Tuesday." (Reuters)

Or, as The Indy spins it: "Britain's dirty cities more dangerous than an A-bomb" - "Air pollution in major cities is potentially more damaging to health than being exposed to the radioactive fallout of an atomic bomb, according to a report published today. The study suggests that high levels of urban air pollution cut life expectancy by more than the radiation exposure of emergency workers sent into the 19-mile exclusion zone around the Chernobyl disaster." (London Independent)

"Lawmakers want to limit teen time under tanning lamps" - "BOSTON - Tanning booths are the latest area where teenagers need to be protected from themselves, according to lawmakers and health officials pushing legislation they say will reduce the number of new skin cancer cases." (Associated Press)

"Childhood obesity creating problems" - "There is a health crisis in Indian Country and it's self-inflicted. After decades of high mortality rates because of poor housing, contaminated water and unhealthy living conditions, our next generation is overweight and likely to have a shorter lifespan than us." (The Leader-Post)

"Sugary drinks pack on calories without any nutritional punch" - "What worries you most? Decaying teeth, thinning bones, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, dementia, cancer or obesity? Whatever tops your list, you may be surprised to know that all of these health problems are linked to the beverages you drink — or do not drink. Last year, with the support of Lipton Tea owner Unilever, a panel of experts on nutrition and health published a "Beverage Guidance System" in hopes of getting people to stop drinking their calories when those calories contribute little or nothing to their health." (New York Times)

"Asthma incidence shows a 50 percent increase in fat people" - "For overweight and obese individuals, the incidence of asthma increases by 50 percent, as compared to those of normal weight, according to a meta-analysis of seven studies on severe asthma involving 333,102 patients. The results appear in the first issue for April 2007 of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, published by the American Thoracic Society." (American Thoracic Society)

"March Diet Wackiness" - "Diet quackery has been around for more than a century. In honor of the first day of April, we note a great April Fool’s Day hoax. In 2000, Esporta Health Clubs announced a new line of fat socks to help people lose weight. The Museum of Hoaxes describes it among their top 100 Best April Food Day Hoaxes of All Times:" (Junkfood Science)

"HUNGARY: NATO Radar Runs Into Opposition" - "BUDAPEST - Hungary's plans to host a NATO radar are being met with stiff resistance by locals who cite health and environmental fears. But their municipal representatives are seemingly yielding to government pressure." (IPS)

Here we go again: "It's not just a fad - organic food is better for you, say scientists" - "New evidence has emerged showing that organic food does contain nutrients that deliver health benefits, contrary to the view put forward earlier this year by David Miliband, who said it was only a "lifestyle choice".

The debate intensified last month when a report for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs found "many" organic products had lower ecological impacts than conventional methods using fertilisers and pesticides. But the study said other organic foods - such as milk, tomatoes and chicken were significantly less energy efficient and could be more polluting than intensively farmed equivalents." (London Independent)

"FDA Extends Comment Period for Food From Clones" - "WASHINGTON - The US Food and Drug Administration on Monday extended until May 3 the deadline for public comments on its ruling that milk and meat from some cloned animals are safe to eat." (Reuters)

"Telling toxic tales about GM food" - "A Greenpeace-financed study claims GM corn is bad for us. Why did the media swallow it?" (Alex Avery, sp!ked)

"ECOWAS Ministers Agree on Biotechnology Plan for Region" - "Ministers from the Economic Community of West African States have agreed to use biotechnology to increase food production in their region. The agreement was reached at the third ECOWAS ministerial meeting on biotechnology and bio-safety, held in Accra, Ghana. Efam Dovi reports for VOA from Accra." (VOA News)

"Biotechnology - an important tool in feeding growing populations" - "The Deputy Minister of Local Government, Rural Development and Environment, Abraham Dwuma Odoom has said biotechnology is an important tool in the fight to feed growing populations. New biotechnology techniques has the potential to deliver improved food quality and the environment also stood to benefit through agronomically enhanced crops." (GNA)

April 2, 2007

Supreme Court orders EPA to revisit global warming: Click to read the Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. EPA.

"School vaccine exemptions put kids at risk" - "NEW YORK - Rules that allow parents to exempt their children from immunization requirements for "philosophical" reasons are putting all kids at risk of outbreaks of vaccine-preventable disease, Arkansas researchers warn." (Reuters Health)

"Our kids are doomed — not!" - "This week, every mainstream media outlet in the country reported on the Kaiser Family Foundation study looking at children’s exposure to television food advertisements. The stories were all taken from a carefully-worded press release but reporters failed to critically examine it or the study and leapt to fill in the blanks. The stories they created did nothing more than frighten parents and perpetuate myths about fat children." (Junkfood Science)

"By whose definition?" - "Among the efforts to convince us all of a childhood obesity epidemic are expressions of dismay that parents are failing to recognize that their children are “overweight.” (Junkfood Science)

"Skepticism in action" - "Sometimes we find a journalist who is thinking. Saskatoon Star Phoenix columnist, Les MacPherson, takes a skeptical eye to warnings of impending doom surrounding the obesity crisis in today’s paper:" (Junkfood Science)

"Helping in ways that matter" - "Dr. Sydney Smith at Medpundit pointed out an especially intense marketing piece from an affiliate of the National Alliance for Nutrition and Activity (NANA) that appeared in today’s paper." (Junkfood Science)

NANA is another CSPI front, for those who might not have known.

"The “O” word" - "Penn & Teller looked at the obesity epidemic this past week. Behind their rather lascivious, attention-getting style is some hard-hitting truth. In revealing the myths behind obesity and dieting, they also exposed the profit motives behind the creation of a crisis. Their points were illustrated in typical P&T style by visiting an obesity conference to talk with the experts and holding a “Fat Guy Olympics.” Fat women at a NAAFA social describe the discrimination faced by fat people." (Junkfood Science)

"Disruptive La Nina weather phenomenon looming: WMO" - "The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said Friday that a disruptive La Nina weather pattern in the Pacific basin was looming this year but might not take shape for another two to three months. La Nina, effectively a drop in sea surface temperatures off the western coast of South America, can cause havoc with weather patterns in many parts of the globe. "There is a definite indication of La Nina, but the timing is not clear," WMO scientist Rupa Kumar Kolli told journalists." (AFP)

"Be afraid" - "But not of global warming — the Greens are out to get us" (Václav Klaus, Prague Post)

Good one :) "Macy's Thanksgiving Parade to add Al Gore Balloon" - "April 1st, 2007, New York City - Officials for the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade announced today that they would be adding a new balloon to the roster of helium balloons used in the annual holiday extravaganza. Al Gore, former Vice President and carbon crusader will get his own balloon at the 2007 Thanksgiving Day Parade." (Watt's Up With That?)

I know, I know, April 1 was yesterday but Al can always use a little more hot airing.

Unfortunately not an 'April Fool': "Impact on health is key to climate action" - "He took on Bush and Blair over the Iraq war. Now the controversial editor of one of the world's top medical journals will challenge them on climate change. Dr Richard Horton, editor of The Lancet, says his journal will continue to be a thorn in the side of the world's political elite by making global warming the subject of a major new campaign. The Lancet will lobby for a reduction in carbon emissions by focusing on the damaging health impact of greenhouse gases." (The Herald)

Horton has a dreadful habit of editorial interference in fields where medicos have zero knowledge or expertise.

Podcast: "Climate Change Interview With Jim Clark - Part 1" - "Climate change and global warming is a debate that you do not want to engage in without showing up with a true climate specialist. Otherwise, it’s kind of like the Three Stooges debating quantum physics – there’s a lot of slapstick going on and it’s amusing but it’s also a fundamentally useless exercise. That is why Quantum Limit has invited meteorologist Jim Clark to grant us a two part podcast interview on the subject. Part one covers the real-science of climate change, global warming, man made vs. natural causes and the actual ability to accurately forecast 5 days, 10 days and 100 years into the future. Part II of the Jim Clark interview podcast will be available on Tuesday." (Quantum Limit)

Um... no: "Public Opinion Must Lead Climate Change Investors" - "LONDON - A bigger shift in public opinion would drive investment banks and fund managers to put more money into tackling climate change, analysts and investors told a conference in London." (Reuters)

Facts must drive 'climate change' investment. We don't know the planet's current temperature and we don't know what temperature the planet 'should' be -- and that's the facts.

"In search of the perfect thermometer" - "Lon Glazner, a fellow blogger and local electronics engineer made some comments about my post on the NASA/CSU study on California temperatures. Well that got me started...so below are Lon's comments and my reply along with a fun technical challenge. For those of you that read this blog, but disagree with my views, I invite you to read this carefully." (Watt's Up with That?)

Oh dear: "Federal judge allows global warming lawsuit to advance" - "Citing Al Gore's movie on global warming, a federal judge has advanced a lawsuit against the government for its financing of overseas projects that may contribute to climate change.

The Bush administration had argued last year that the "alleged impacts of global climate change are too remote and speculative" to require the sort of environmental review for foreign projects sought by environmental groups and four U.S. cities.

But U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White on Friday allowed the lawsuit to proceed against two federal development agencies that insure billions of dollars of U.S. investors' money for foreign projects, among them power plants that emit greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide." (Associated Press) [em added]

"Mansur: Is there global warming 'truth'?" - "There is little disagreement in the media that Al Gore is greatly responsible for bringing the subject of man-made global warming into the public glare. Gore has been on a roll since the Academy Awards gave his film, An Inconvenient Truth, the prize for the best documentary of the year, and it will not be a surprise if the Norwegian Nobel committee awards him the peace prize for his efforts in the push to end man-made global warming.

Science and politics have co-existed in an uneasy relationship for a very long time. The reason is simple. In science "truth" is meant to be independent of human preferences and its discovery occurs through the scientific method of conjectures and refutations.

In politics "truth" is often a claim made on the basis of some authority -- church, charismatic leader, majority opinion in a democracy -- and selective evidence." (Sun Media)

"With five private jets, Travolta still lectures us on Global Warming" - "From the "do as I say, not as I do department..." His serious aviation habit means he is hardly the best person to lecture others on the environment. But John Travolta went ahead and did it anyway. The 53-year-old actor, a passionate pilot, encouraged his fans to "do their bit" to tackle global warming." (Watt's Up With That?)

"When it's right to be reticent" - "The caution of climate scientists is commendable even if caution is out of fashion, says Philip Ball." (Nature)

"Should You Plan An Event?" - "UNSTOPPABLE GLOBAL WARMING - EVERY 1500 YEARS A dramatically informative speech on climate change by Dennis Avery, Hudson Institute, co-author of the new book of the same title." (CGFI)

Buy the book and support JunkScience.com at the same time.

"Climate doomsayers all at sea" - "Around 18,000 years ago, what is now Sydney Harbour was about 15km inshore of the coastline, and the sea level was at its lowest point, about 120m below the present sea level.

The site of the Opera House, on Bennelong Point, was almost midway between the beach and Homebush, and South Head was midway between the Opera House and the coast.

According to the Australian Museum, the sea reached its present level about 6000 years ago.

So, the sea level rose one metre every 100 years from its low point to the current level during that period.

Not evenly, on a couple of occasions the sea rose several metres in very short periods - over a few decades. At other times, things stalled.

But the worst-case scenario posed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which now has the worry warts twisting their knickers so anxiously, has sea level rising about 0.3m per 100 years, about a third of the rise known to have occurred in the relatively recent past.

And they blame it all on Man!" (Piers Akerman, Sunday Telegraph)

"Sea Level Rise Consensus Statement and Next Steps" - "from relevant scientific experts. A group of scientists have beat him to the punch issuing a consensus statement last week:" (Prometheus)

"Spreading the faith" - "Labor is impressed by Britain's visiting climate guru Nicholas Stern, unlike the government. But editor-at-large Paul Kelly says no one knows how the opposition's goal for cutting emissions can be reached." (The Australian)

"Historic CO2 levels - the emerging picture" - "Ernst Beck's full paper has now been published." (An Englishman's Castle)

"High school student clarifies climate change" - "Do you remember what kind of homework did you do when you were a high school student? Kristen Byrnes of Portland Maine is completing a project composed out of approximately 20 extensive pages that analyze the causes of the observed warming. As far as I can say, the content of the website is at least comparable in quality, quantity, and sanity to the content of RealClimate.ORG even though the latter source is written by 11 people who have sucked millions of taxpayers' dollars in several countries." (The Reference Frame)

Disaster prognostication for fun & profit: "Climate change chaos 'closer': Higher taxes, droughts, floods and extreme weather predicted for B.C." - "The looming "destabilization" of Earth's atmosphere means British Columbia faces higher municipal taxes and a reordering of basic government priorities to cope with an accelerating regime of droughts, floods and other weather-related civil emergencies.

One of Canada's most eminent climate researchers said the enormous challenges caused by rapidly changing weather systems confronting B.C. and other jurisdictions will be as significant, difficult and costly as reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Details of Canadian scenarios will emerge in a federal report this fall, which currently bears the working title Towards Adaptation." (Vancouver Sun)

The Star is keen to drive Canada's economy off a cliff: "Tackling the roots of climate change" - "When Parliament resumes sitting April 16 after a two-week Easter break, its first order of business will be a vote on the Conservative government's Clean Air Act, which has been greatly amended by the opposition parties.

The amendments hugely strengthen the Tories' original bill, which had been justifiably denounced because it dealt primarily with air quality, not climate change, and because serious targets did not take effect until 2050." (Toronto Star)

The other hazards of looming elections: "Climate on APEC's plate" - "PRIME Minister John Howard has said he will make climate change a key agenda item at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders' summit in Sydney later this year. Mr Howard said he had written to the other 20 APEC leaders outlining plans to make clean development and climate change a key agenda topic." (Agence France-Presse)

Meanwhile: "Stop emissions or risk our way of life: scientists" - "THE Howard Government would not set aggressive targets to cut Australia's greenhouse gas emissions, the Environment Minister said yesterday, despite calls for immediate action from business chiefs, leading scientists and environmental groups at Labor's weekend climate summit. Accusing Labor of making climate "a religious issue" and "verging on fanatical", Malcolm Turnbull told Channel 10's Meet the Press: "We will not set targets that are going to devastate the Australian economy." (Sydney Morning Herald)

True... "Carbon trading won't work" - "Experiments with the market scheme favored by Schwarzenegger shows trading favors big polluters without curbing global warming gases." (LA Times)

... but mostly because no amount of carbon constraint can make a measurable difference in global mean temperature.

"WMO statement on the status of the global climate in 2006" (.pdf) - "The WMO statement for 2006 is now available. It describes extreme weather and climate events during the year and provides a historical perspective on the variability and trends of surface temperatures and other important parameters.

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO), through its Commission for Climatology and in cooperation with its 188 Members, has issued annual statements on the status of the global climate since 1993. They provide authoritative scientific information on climate and its variability, complementing the periodic assessments made by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which is co-sponsored by WMO and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)." (WMO)

"Abrupt climate change more common than believed" - "It came on quickly and then lasted nearly two decades, eventually killing more than one million people and affecting 50 million more. All of this makes the Sahel drought, which first struck West Africa in the late 1960s, the most notorious example of an abrupt climatic shift during the last century.

Dramatic as this single event was, University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers have now uncovered 29 other regions worldwide that endured similarly precipitous climatic changes during the 20th century - far more than scientists previously thought. Their study publishes today (March 30) in the online edition of Geophysical Research Letters." (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

A Seminar On the Importance of Land Surface Processes On the Global Climate System (Climate Science)

Here we go again: "Climate change ‘could create 200m refugees’" - "EQUATORIAL lands that are home to hundreds of millions of people will become uninhabitable as food and water run out due to climate change, scientists will warn this week." (Sunday Times)

"Poor Nations to Bear Brunt as World Warms" - "Wealthy countries are spending far more to limit their own risks from global warming’s consequences than to help the world’s most vulnerable regions." (New York Times)

"Impacts of Climate Change" - "Following are impacts of global warming outlined in a draft UN climate report due to be released in Brussels on April 6." | Reports by the UN Climate Panel (Reuters)

Seth Boringtheme rides again: "Climate draft charts extinctions" - "WASHINGTON --A key element of the second major report on climate change being released Friday in Belgium is a chart that maps out the effects of global warming, most of them bad, with every degree of temperature rise." (AP)

The Indy... "Wars of the world: how global warming puts 60 nations at risk" - "As scientists deliver a detailed report on the impact of climate change this week, an 'IoS' investigation shows it will spark a major rise in conflicts." (London Independent)

"Deadly dengue fever surging in Mexico" - "The deadly hemorrhagic form of dengue fever is increasing drastically in Mexico, and experts predict a surge throughout Latin America fueled by climate change, migration and faltering mosquito eradication efforts." (AP)

Climate change? No, just faltering vector control efforts for which climate hysteria makes a handy excuse.

"Russia Sees Ill Effects of 'General Winter's' Retreat" - "Experts have long feared that Earth's warming climate would cause tropical diseases such as malaria to spread into more temperate zones, but a dramatic example of an apparently climate-related disease outbreak cropped up this winter in a cold place -- Russia." (Washington Post)

Is this nitwit for real? "Anglo-Celtia threatens final Bengali Holocaust" - "Climate Genocide driven by First World Climate Criminals has become a harsh reality with the recent disappearance into the Bay of Bengal of the Indian Bengali island of Lohachara (former population 10,000). Bengal – including West Bengal (population 85 million) and Bangladesh (population 153 million) is a densely populated part of the world that is acutely threatened (like Louisiana and New Orleans) by First World greenhouse gas pollution, global warming and consequent sea level rises and storm surges." (MWC)

"Hot Times in the Holy Land: The Effects of Global Climate Change on Israel" - "Ten thousand years ago, hippopotami roamed a much more humid Sahara region in Africa that was filled with lakes and vegetation. Similarly, Israel’s climate of the not-so-distant past bore little resemblance to present conditions. More rain fell across much of the country and temperatures were substantially more moderate. These climatic changes, encompassing Africa, Israel, and the entire globe, happened gradually and over long periods of time. In contrast, the wave of climatic changes resulting from global warming is anticipated to occur at a much faster pace – over the course of a few generations instead of many millennia. In the past people and ecosystems had ample time to adapt to these changes. Now they may not." (Zeek)

"Brouhaha over global warming can leave you cold" - "People often ask how I can be sceptical about the claim that global warming is the major threat of our time, requiring urgent and massive action. After all, many scientists believe it and I am not a scientist.

It's a good question, but I think I have a good answer. History shows that scientists are not always right. Sometimes they get caught up in the non-scientific enthusiasms of their time. History also shows that one of those enthusiasms, which crops up constantly, is a desire to believe in the approach of some kind of apocalypse.

Of course, I have no way of knowing if the carbon crusade is a case in point. But it shares some of the characteristics of previous apocalyptic movements, which provides grounds for cool scepticism." (Michael Duffy, Brisbane Times)

On the abortive Sydney 'Earth Hour' (I asked several friends and relatives from 'down south' about the 'event' but they either missed or didn't notice it):

"‘Sydney Blacks Out for Global Warming.’ Wanna Bet?" - "That was the headline on the AP story, claiming that Sydney went “black.” The much-ballyhooed event actually fizzled and the same story said “that the city’s patchwork of millions of tiny lights had thinned, not disappeared.”

Still the eco-elite couldn’t grasp that the lights did not go out on Sydney. Sure, the city government turned out some of the lights and so did some restaurants, but the city stayed amazingly bright – unlike the clueless lefties who claimed otherwise." (Dan Gainor, News Busters)

"CITY OF (EXTREMELY POWERFUL) LIGHT" - "Readers aren’t convinced by the Age’s before-and-after shots of Sydney’s Earth Hour lights-out experiment:" (Tim Blair)

"Journalists with Photoshop" - "Tim Blair has a post about what appears to be a fake before and after photo of Sydney, Australia turning its lights out for some political cause. It's blatantly photoshopped or else altered photographically (longer exposure for the lights on version). Compare the number of individual offices which have lights on in the buildings. Not much of a difference. Seems like not that many people were in on the whole thing. Look at how screamingly bright the headlights are on the bridge in the lights on picture. The brightness of the headlights wouldn't change to the point where they saturate the "lights on" version." (Salmon Sheets)

"Britons Aware but Inactive on Climate Change - Survey" - "LONDON - The British government, which prides itself on its green credentials, will have trouble hitting its carbon-cutting targets judging by a survey highlighting the deep gap between public awareness and actions.

The first Green Barometer survey by the Energy Saving Trust (EST), released on Monday, showed that while 80 percent of people are well aware of the looming climate crisis, many are doing little or nothing in their own lives to try to tackle it." (Reuters)

"Firms fail to adapt to climate change" - "Companies and public bodies in Britain face expensive repair bills, penalties and even litigation because they are not adapting infrastructure and business plans to the threat of climate change, the government's UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP) has warned." (The Observer)

"New Zealand: Call for NIWA to be disbanded" - "The latest attempt by NIWA to explain away the extreme rain that fell in Northland these past few days provides the strongest argument for the disbanding of NIWA and the return of all weather matters to MetService, according to Professor Augie Auer, a former chief meteorologist and now chairman of the science panel of the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition.

"So simplistic, it's silly" is how Dr Auer describes the statement by NIWA climate scientist Dr Jim Salinger that "As climate warming occurs, the atmosphere can hold more moisture and therefore more rain falls and therefore what we have thought of under past climate data as one-in-100 or more reduces."

“While qualified climate scientists will cringe at Jim Salinger’s nonsensical interpretation, ordinary New Zealanders affected by adverse natural weather events should rise up and demand that administration of all climate matters should return to its traditional home, MetService,” said Dr Auer." (Press Release: New Zealand Climate Science Coalition)

"Green tax on air travel ‘would cost the jobs of thousands’" - "Scotland's travel trade has warned that proposals for a green' tax on air travel will destroy Scotland's economy with the loss of thousands of jobs." (The Herald)

"Drivers Shrug as Gasoline Prices Soar" - "Prices are rising at the pumps again, but even as gas tops $3 a gallon, consumption has not gone down." (New York Times)

"Brazil Aims to Dominate World Ethanol Market" - "RIO DE JANEIRO, Mar 31 - Brazil is working towards producing enough ethanol to substitute 10 percent of the gasoline consumed worldwide within 18 years. That would mean increasing its current production of 17.3 billion litres a year by a factor of 12, without sacrificing forests, protected areas or food cultivation." (Tierramérica)

D'oh! "Ethanol-blend auto emissions no greener than gasoline: study" - "An unpublished federal report appears to undermine the belief that commercially available ethanol-blended fuel produces cleaner emissions than regular gasoline." (CBC News)

Here's a surprise: "Ethanol makers dispute biofuels report" - "OTTAWA–A group representing biofuel manufacturers disputes a report that suggests the federal government's massive investments in ethanol won't dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The study, by Frederic Forge of the Library of Parliament's science and technology division, says regulations to promote biofuels will have "relatively minor impact" on reducing greenhouse emissions across Canada." (CP)

"Scientists Weigh Downside of Palm Oil" - "Only a few years ago, oil from palm trees was viewed as an ideal biofuel: a cheap, renewable alternative to petroleum that would fight global warming. Energy companies began converting generators and production soared." (AP)

"Farmers Head to Fields to Plant Corn, Lots of It" - "With demand for ethanol pushing corn prices to $4 a bushel or higher, it was not a surprise that farmers intended to plant a lot more corn this season." (New York Times)

Uh-huh: "Clean power is coming soon, scientists believe" - "British scientists are involved in a £500 million project to achieve the "holy grail" of nuclear power research. They hope to produce a clean and almost limitless source of energy by harnessing the same power that drives the sun in a prototype for the world's first nuclear fusion power station." (Sunday Telegraph)

"New U.S. forest rules blocked" - "A federal judge put the brakes on the Bush administration's plans to loosen rules governing the U.S. National Forest system." (UPI)

Comments of the Competitive Enterprise Institute to the Food and Drug Administration Regarding the Agency’s Animal Cloning Draft Risk Assessment, Proposed Risk Management Plan, and Draft Guidance for Industry (CEI)