Archives - July 2008

July 31, 2008

Climate Change Could Hit Lebanon's Dwindling Cedars - BAROUK, Lebanon - Sturdy cedars perched high in the mountains stand for many Lebanese as symbols of their fractured land's survival. But some environmentalists worry that the trees face a new threat from global warming. (Reuters)

If indeed some of these trees are 2,000 years old then they have seen much greater climatic changes and yet they live.

Birds Fly North in Climate Change Vanguard - Study - OSLO - Birds have been moving north in Europe over the past 25 years because of climate change in the vanguard of likely huge shifts in the ranges of plants and animals, scientists said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Wow! You mean they extend their range polewards during the less-cold phase of cycles? Who knew opportunistic critters would do that?

Climate Change Perks Up the Dartford Warbler - LONDON - The Dartford Warbler, a bird species that almost disappeared in the severe cold of the early 1960s, is making a recovery thanks to climate change. (Reuters)

Disappointing for many: Arctic Ice Bigger Than 2007, But Thawing Long-Term - OSLO - Arctic sea ice is unlikely to shrink below a 2007 record low this year in a reprieve from the worst predictions of climate change even though new evidence confirms a long-term thaw is under way, experts said. (Reuters)

Polar Ice Check - Still a lot of ice up there - During our last check in, we had a look at northern Canada from the Arctic Circle to the North pole, and found we had quite a ways to go before we see an “ice free arctic” this year as some have speculated.

Today I did a check of the NASA rapidfire site for TERRA/MODIS satellite images and grabbed a view showing northern Greenland all the way to the North Pole. (Watts Up With That?)

Greenland Again - The New York Times Magazine published a story “Ice Free” by Stephan Faris, hawking his new book “Forecast: The Consequences of Climate Change, From the Amazon to the Arctic, From Darfur to Napa Valley”, to be published in January.

In the article, Faris notes “Greenland’s ice sheet represents one of global warming’s most disturbing threats. The vast expanses of glaciers- massed, on average, 1.6 miles deep - contain enough water to raise sea levels worldwide by 23 feet. Should they melt or otherwise slip into the ocean, they would flood coastal capitals, submerge tropical islands and generally redraw the world’s atlases. The infusion of fresh water could slow or shut down the ocean’s currents, plunging Europe into bitter winter.”

There is little recognition in the media and by the author of history. Greenland actually was warmer in the 1930s and 1940s than it has been in recent decades. For the period from the 1960s to the 1990s, temperatures actually declined significantly as the Atlantic went through its multidecadal cold mode. The temperature changes up and down the last few centuries were closely related to these multidecadal ocean cycles. (Joseph D’Aleo, CCM, AMS Fellow)

Oh... 21st century water management: Calculating with the unknown - Climate change is making a central assumption of water management obsolete: Water-resource risk assessment and planning are currently based on the notion that factors such as precipitation and streamflow fluctuate within an unchanging envelope of variability. But anthropogenic change of Earth’s climate is altering the means and extremes of these factors so that this paradigm of stationarity no longer applies, researchers report in the latest issue of Science.

Lets see, we have the Arctic Oscillation, North Atlantic Oscillation, Pacific Decadal, Indian Ocean Dipole, El Niño Southern, etc.... Considering just those listed, each having three possible states, positive, neutral and negative and all having asymmetric phase lengths we have rather a lot of possible combinations of potentially complimentary through antagonistic states exerting powerful influences on Earth's climate, no? Hands up any and everyone who knows which of these synchronicities will apply warming, cooling, wetting or drying influences for every or any given regions and when they did or will occur... anybody? What about anyone who knows over how many hundreds or thousands of years we will observe all these various states? How about a useful prediction of what each possible permutation could cause? Surely we have that much worked out after all these billions invested in climate investigations? It's not as though we are complicating the situation by adding requirement for knowing the previous state and known baselines or anything...

OK, we'll stop. It's just we get a bit agitated when dipsticks suggest they accurately know the bounds "an unchanging envelope of variability" (which may exist) when we have no real certainty of phases or their periodicity, what effect various synchronicities have or very much about what drives our climate at all. We know the sun is a big deal but we are also learning it is not the whole story. We also know we are long past due to abandon the silly notion an inconsequential trace gas is a key determinant in global climate.

Looming Turf War May Stymie Aussie CO2 Storage Plan - PERTH - Australia's ambitious plan to bury its carbon dioxide emissions under the seabed could be constrained by a potential conflict between petroleum companies and government entities seeking offshore sites to test carbon storage technology, industry leaders said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Climate change drops a BRIC - You have to hand it to the economics team at Goldman Sachs. It was they who came up with the concept of the ''BRICs'': the four big economies, in Brazil, Russia, India and China, that were going to catch up with and then overtake the big economies of the developed world. More recently they added the ''Next Eleven'': middle-sized developing countries such as Turkey, Indonesia and Mexico that will also grow fast enough to overtake their old-rich counterparts in the next generation.

Back in 2006, Goldman Sachs predicted that the Chinese economy would surpass that of the United States in the early 2040s, with the Indian economy not far behind. But now the Goldman Sachs team has put out a new set of forecasts.

The Chinese economy, they predict, will overtake the United States economy in about 2025, not in the 2040s, and will be twice as big by 2050. India's economy by 2050 will still be slightly smaller than that of the US, but the economies of Brazil, Russia, Indonesia and Mexico will all be bigger than that of the next-largest old-rich country, Britain. (Canberra Times)

Perpetual hand-wringer Gwynne Dyer is stunned that developing countries, like, develop.

House Majority Whip: Climate Change Hurts Blacks More - Clyburn says African-Americans 'disproportionately impacted'; study recommends 'fee, tax or allowance auction on polluters.' (Jeff Poor, Business & Media Institute)

"It's the end of the world; minorities worst affected"? The only possible motivation for such competition is the belief there's money in it.

Just for fun: Al Gore Places Infant Son In Rocket To Escape Dying Planet

EARTH—Former vice president Al Gore—who for the past three decades has unsuccessfully attempted to warn humanity of the coming destruction of our planet, only to be mocked and derided by the very people he has tried to save—launched his infant son into space Monday in the faint hope that his only child would reach the safety of another world. (The Onion)

Gasp! UN goes green, orders drastic cut of air-conditioning use - The United Nations on Wednesday announced a drastic cut of air-conditioning usage at its New York headquarters for the month of August that will raise the temperature from a crisp 72 degrees Fahrenheit (22 Celsius) to a balmy 77. (AFP)

Why do so many people believe in catastrophic global warming? - This is a good question. The reason is that global warming is the new fashionable religion of Western democracies. Christian church attendances have long been declining and belief in global warming has filled the gap as media propaganda about its supposed catastrophic environmental effects pervades the world and alarms the populace.

This new Green eco-religion is like a wolf in sheep's clothing and is as dangerous. Unchecked it could result in the downfall of Western civilization as we know it today, or should I say, of yesterday, for already some Governments have implemented very unwise climate change policies derived from unscientific Green beliefs. (Allan Taylor, Helium)

A New World Architecture - "In essence, what we may call the Pacific-South American Political Plate has become a powerful tectonic force in its own right, and there is no way that this expanding Plate will, in the future, sub-duct meekly beneath the European and North American Political Plates. From sovereign funds to world production, the countries involved are beginning to gain an upper hand, and they will play that hand according to their own concerns, not according to those of Europe and America." (Global Warming Politics)

After Doha, what we need is a WFTO - What the world needs now is a World Free Trade Organization (Terence Corcoran, Financial Post)

Market Remedy to Climate Change Stalls - LONDON - The world's biggest source of private sector investment to fight climate change in the developing world has stalled pending complex global climate talks and uncertain demand.

The US$13 billion trade in carbon offsets has also come under withering attack over profiteering and scam projects to cut greenhouse gas emissions. (Reuters)

Documentation Of Continued Significant Land Use Change - Timo Hämeranta has again provided us important new research papers, this time on the latest information on deforestation. (Climate Science)

Global Warming's Fish-Sex Effect - Once scientists began studying the impact of global warming on everything from tourism to asthma, it was only a matter of time before they got around to sex. Now two biologists at Spain's Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) have done just that, at least when it comes to fish. (Time)

These guys may not have noticed but the oceans are not a homogenous temperature -- it is within the realms of possibility that small changes in depth or latitude is how these species have coped with previous warm periods.

Japan adopts action plan against global warming - Japan's cabinet on Tuesday adopted a plan to slash carbon emissions up to 80 percent by 2050 by starting carbon trading and stepping up research on carbon-capture technologies. (AFP)

Canada premier rebuff's opposition's fossil fuel tax - Prime Minister Stephen Harper Wednesday rejected a fossil fuel tax the opposition Liberal Party has proposed, saying it would devastate the Canadian economy. (AFP)

Jay Ambrose: The energy speech McCain should deliver - WASHINGTON - W e need a new John McCain, one who throws overboard some worn-out ideas he has been toting around, and — with fire in his eyes, his belly and his rhetoric — would give an energy speech something along these lines: (Jay Ambrose, The Examiner)

Americans, Split on Which is More Important – Offshore Drilling or Crackdown on Speculators - Voters are nearly evenly divided on which is more important– cracking down on speculators or lifting the ban on offshore drilling -- as the debate comes to a head in Congress this week over how to fight rising gas and oil prices. As far as public opinion is concerned, the best answer would be to do both. (Rasmussen Reports)

They were asked the wrong question then. There is no need to "crack down" on speculators -- all that's required are the right market signals. Lift the Congressional ban on oil exploration on most of the continental shelf and current prices will plunge in anticipation of future supplies coming on stream -- it will lose its "no replacement stock" premium. Congress could be heroes but are constrained by Pelosi and the antis.

McCain Rows The Boat Offshore, Hallelujah! - John McCain visits California to make the case for offshore drilling. The oil spill off Santa Barbara was 40 years ago. It's time to stop crying over spilled oil. (IBD)

GOP continues full-court press on oil drilling - WASHINGTON -- Republicans on Wednesday pressured congressional Democrats for a vote to lift a ban on offshore drilling before Congress begins its summer recess.

The partisan fight over offshore drilling has stalled efforts to pass legislation meant to lower high gas prices before Congress adjourns for its monthlong break at the end of the week.

Most Republicans want to lift a 1981 ban on offshore drilling, saying it will increase domestic oil supplies. But the Democratic leadership wants to keep the ban in place, arguing that more offshore drilling will have little effect on prices and could threaten the environment. (CNN)

The Reality Revolt - Quite a few Democrats are rebelling against their leadership and joining with Republicans to push for more domestic oil drilling. They've gotten an earful from voters who demand real solutions. (IBD)

Oil sands get nod from U.S. anti-poverty group - CALGARY -- Support for Canada's oil sands is coming from an unexpected American group--an anti-poverty coalition led by African-American civil rights and faith leaders.

The group is waging a national campaign targeting 50 "extreme" environmental organizations and 100 U. S. politicians it says are restricting energy supplies through climate-change legislation, causing oil prices to spike to levels that are "strangling" the poor.

Niger Innis, co-chairman of the "Stop The War On The Poor" campaign and national spokesman for the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), one of the oldest civil rights groups in the United States, said the alliance wants more oil from Canada's vast unconventional deposits. (Financial Post)

Plants Need To Sub Natgas With Nuclear - If ever there was a question about the need for nuclear power, it has certainly been dispelled now with the rising cost of fossil fuels. (mark J Perry, IBD)

Wind Breaker: Senate Again Rejects Tax Breaks for Clean Energy - The renewable-energy industry’s still out of luck: The U.S. Senate tried and failed again to extend the tax credits that make clean energy competitive. That leaves the crucial government support even closer to expiration at the end of the year, and means lots of renewable-energy projects in pipelines around the country could get cancelled.

Despite calls from people as disparate as Al Gore and T. Boone Pickens for more clean energy, the Senate vote wasn’t even as close as previous efforts to extend the tax credits—51 senators voted in favor, to 43 against. The measure needed 60 votes to be filibuster-proof—crucial at a time when Senate Republicans are holding their support for the tax credits until Democrats offer their support for more domestic oil drilling. If the two sides can find common ground, Congress could still renew the tax breaks after the August recess. (WSJ)

State shutters FPL 'green' program - FPL's renewable energy program, which had 39,000 customers, was closed after a panel learned most of the money went to marketing and administration. (Miami Herald)

Energy to burn - Protesters at our coal plant are deluded if they think renewables alone can serve Britain's needs (Paul Golby, The Guardian)

Climate change policies are costing families an extra £50 on annual electric bills - Householders are paying more than £50 extra a year for electricity thanks to climate change policies, campaigners claim.

But the Government's 'preoccupation' with green policies is said to have made only small reductions to harmful greenhouse gases.

The TaxPayers' Alliance said the average domestic electricity bill for 2007-2008 was £367 - with £51.38 of this attributed to the cost of climate change policies. (Daily Mail)

Tax Hike Would Force German Biodiesel Closures - BERLIN - Germany's crisis-hit biodiesel industry faces further closures if the government goes ahead with plans to further raise biofuel taxes, a biofuels industry leader said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

50% Oppose Tax Increases, Favor Pro-Growth Policy Over One That Guarantees Tax Fairness - With taxes front and center this week in the U.S. presidential campaign, 50% of Americans still see tax increases as bad for the economy and an identical percentage favor a tax policy focused on economic growth rather than fairness. (Rasmussen Reports)

Fake ‘green’ campaign kills real jobs - The LCBO’s anti-glass crusade is all about optics, not facts (David Menzies, Financial Post)

A doctor is this stupid? Sheesh! What’s Lurking in Your Countertop? - SHORTLY before Lynn Sugarman of Teaneck, N.J., bought her summer home in Lake George, N.Y., two years ago, a routine inspection revealed it had elevated levels of radon, a radioactive gas that can cause lung cancer. So she called a radon measurement and mitigation technician to find the source.

“He went from room to room,” said Dr. Sugarman, a pediatrician. But he stopped in his tracks in the kitchen, which had richly grained cream, brown and burgundy granite countertops. His Geiger counter indicated that the granite was emitting radiation at levels 10 times higher than those he had measured elsewhere in the house.

“My first thought was, my pregnant daughter was coming for the weekend,” Dr. Sugarman said. When the technician told her to keep her daughter several feet from the countertops just to be safe, she said, “I had them ripped out that very day,” and sent to the state Department of Health for analysis. The granite, it turned out, contained high levels of uranium, which is not only radioactive but releases radon gas as it decays. “The health risk to me and my family was probably small,” Dr. Sugarman said, “but I felt it was an unnecessary risk.” (New York Times)

I admit I don't much care for granite benchtops from a purely practical and aesthetic viewpoint (each to their own) but the greatest (only?) risk from these things is if they fall on you. If radon from such trivial sources is building up to hazardous levels (bloody unlikely) then you are at risk from far more serious problems, like anoxia, because your ventilation is woefully inadequate!

Family home visits - The idea is inconceivable that government agents would come into homes to evaluate if parents are feeding and caring for their children properly; screen children and family situations to identify parenting practices, children’s weights or social-emotional development that fall short of state-approved standards; and report those children and parents for case management and treatment. For Americans who don’t follow legislation and public health policies, even talk of such programs might be considered conspiracy theories. Last year, two Acts were introduced into the U.S. House of Representatives that would grant the federal government unprecedented control over parenting and implement state home visits, targeting military families and poor families first. This week, these Acts were scheduled for debate. (Junkfood Science)

Researchers root out new and efficient crop plants - A part of the global food crisis is the inefficiency of current irrigation methods. More irrigated water evaporates than reaches the roots of crops, amounting to an enormous waste of water and energy.

Tel Aviv University researchers, however, are investigating a new solution that turns the problem upside-down, getting to the root of the issue. They are genetically modifying plants' root systems to improve their ability to find the water essential to their survival. (American Friends of Tel Aviv University)

China releases Biotech Rice; Bars Biofuels - CHURCHVILLE, VA— China says short world grain supplies have persuaded it to release biotech rice nationwide, ensuring the broadest-ever use of genetic engineering in a food crop. Chinese plant breeders say biotech crops are certain to produce higher yields, forestalling the need to finance costly rice imports for China’s billion-plus consumers.

To further protect its grain supplies, China has also been discouraging grain-based ethanol for the last two years. Chinese demand for grain ethanol—mainly from corn—had threatened to inflate prices for China’s rice and livestock products as world oil prices hit record levels.

These strategies may quickly become the model for developing countries as the world strives to double food and feed production over the next three decades—with or without biofuels. (Dennis T. Avery, CGFI)

Nano-foods: The next consumer scare? - ORLANDO, Florida - Those consumers already worried about genetically engineered or cloned food reaching their tables may soon find something else in their grocery carts to furrow their brows over -- nano-foods.

Consumer advocates taking part in a food safety conference in Orlando, Florida, this week said food produced by using nanotechnology is quietly coming onto the market, and they want U.S. authorities to force manufacturers to identify them. (Reuters)

Next consumer scare? Only if these fowls make it one and the first step in so doing is labeling or otherwise distinguishing food ingredients and signaling to the consumer there must be something they should worry about.

GM rice product withdrawn - An imported rice product has been withdrawn from sale, after it was found to have trace quantities of an unauthorised genetically modified (GM) rice variety. New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA) ensured the withdrawal after tests showed traces of (GM) rice variety, Bt63, in "rice vermicelli" from China. NZFSA was not aware of health concerns from eating the product, it said. "However, Bt63 is not approved for sale in food in New Zealand as it has not had a Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) safety assessment." (NZPA)

Proposals threaten to stop good science - LSN - Tough new rules proposed by Cabinet to restrict the use of genetically modified organisms threaten to emasculate the Environmental Risk Management Authority and stop good science in its tracks, the chairman of the Life Sciences Network, Dr William Rolleston said today. (New Zealand Life Sciences Network)

July 30, 2008

Idiot! McCain tries to show independence and conservatism - But McCain did not back off his belief in global warming and support of alternative energy development, which is the centerpiece of his plan to revitalize the nation's economy.

"Climate change, my friend, I have to tell you with all due respect, is real. It's real and the question is how do we address it," he told Englekirk. "Suppose I'm wrong and there's no such thing as climate change. All we've done is give our kids a cleaner planet. But suppose I'm right and we do nothing? Then what kind of a planet do we hand off to our kids and our grandkids?" (Associated Press)

Well John, real or not the only thing we'll be able to tell them if we do kill the economy in a vain attempt to fight the phantom menace is "Sorry we destroyed all hope of your adapting to this kids but a few 'prophets' thought it was a good idea at the time...". On the other hand, if we have the courage to do the right thing, concentrate on enriching the world so everyone can afford any necessary protective or adaptive strategies as required, we'll be able to tell them: "We always did the best we could for you. See if you can do as well for those yet to come". The difference in not allowing scammers and schemers to panic us into self destructive actions is that we will actually make future generations better off under all circumstances, regardless of whether enhanced greenhouse entails any risk or not.

What are the odds that we’re baking the planet? - Eco-campaigners claim that climate catastrophe is a virtual certainty. A little bit of maths and logic suggests otherwise. (DK Johnston, sp!ked)

"So we can see already that James Hansen’s claim of ‘certainty exceeding 99 per cent’ goes well beyond the evidence provided by the IPCC report. It seems he’s placed himself firmly on the lunatic fringe of environmental activism."

Hmm... US Should Find Way to Price Carbon Emissions - Execs - HARTFORD, Conn. - Two top executives from US industry told a congressional panel on Monday that the country should assign a dollar cost to carbon emissions to encourage investment in efficiency and tackle climate change. (Reuters)

... what would be a fair price for carbon dioxide emissions? Increasing atmospheric CO2 will trivially increase global mean temperature (not actually a bad thing, warmer is definitely better than cooler) and, most importantly, increasing atmospheric CO2 is boosting global crop yields, including pastures and wood fiber, increasing water efficiency and greening deserts. The there's coccolithophores:

"The scientists reporting in Science compared the remains of some coccolithophores locked into sediments going back to 1780, the start of the Industrial Revolution, and found that those species today produce 40 percent more calcium carbonate in their cells and plates.

Coccolithophores are found around the world, including in Puget Sound. They are unlike any other plant in the ocean because they adorn themselves with plates that some say resemble hubcaps or Frisbees. A coccolithophores can have a few or as many as 100 of these plates. Although tiny, there are times when coccolithophores are so highly concentrated that their protective armor causes wide swaths of ocean to look aqua blue when seen from outer space.

Their mighty numbers make them an important part of the marine food web and of the carbon cycle in the oceans, in part because they take up so much carbon in the upper layer of the oceans and, when they die, their skeletons sink and carry carbon to the seafloor, where it gets locked into the sediments.

"This work contradicts previous findings and shows, for the first time, that calcification by phytoplankton could double by the end of this century," says lead author Debora Iglesias-Rodriguez of the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton, England.

So, carbon dioxide emissions provide a significant boost for terrestrial and marine ecosystems, crops, grazing and help reverse desertification... I still don't think we should charge for them but continue to give them away as a kind of gift to developing countries in their efforts to feed themselves and to wildlife habitats everywhere -- the well mixed nature of atmospheric carbon dioxide means we are also subsidizing our own farmers but it's a relatively cheap byproduct, so good luck to them. Given the difficulties of figuring out who is freeloading to what extent on whose emitted aerial fertilization I don't think there's even a practical means of pricing it and these execs are just being greedy looking for money for nothing like this.

We should continue to give away highly beneficial carbon dioxide by emitting it to the open atmosphere without charge.

EPA asking for input on CO2/GHG - let’s give it to them (Watts Up with That?)

When Will They Ever Learn? By Hendrik Tennekes (Climate Science)

On the credibility of climate predictions - Abstract: Geographically distributed predictions of future climate, obtained through climate models, are widely used in hydrology and many other disciplines, typically without assessing their reliability. Here we compare the output of various models to temperature and precipitation observations from eight stations with long (over 100 years) records from around the globe. The results show that models perform poorly, even at a climatic (30-year) scale. Thus local model projections cannot be credible, whereas a common argument that models can perform better at larger spatial scales is unsupported. (Koutsoyiannis et al, Hydrological Sciences Journal) | download free .pdf

Japanese Professor: Paradigms Of Fear (Global Warming Politics)

Our Earth cools slowly while professor babbles - THERE was one bizarre flaw in Professor Barry Brook's column on this page on Monday.

He sent us his salvo to prove I was wrong last week when I showed you seven graphs and said they proved the world wasn't warming as global warming preachers had promised.

I was wrong, that is, to say that the world hadn't warmed since 1998 and had slowly cooled since 2002, or maybe wrong to say it might matter.

And I was wrong to say the seas had fallen for two years, sea ice had grown, and the weather had not got wilder.

So the flaw in Brook's response? (Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun)

Monckton Fights Back - Chuck it, Smith! - “In the July 2008 edition of Physics and Society, a paper by Lord Monckton entitled “Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered” caused enormous worldwide interest when the Society, which had invited Lord Monckton to submit the paper, had reviewed it in detail and had published it, decided a week after publication, and without Lord Monckton’s knowledge or consent, to add a prefatory disclaimer to the paper. Next, a paid official of the Society, a Dr. Smith, drafted and circulated a rebuttal of Lord Monckton’s paper. That rebuttal, and Lord Monckton’s decisive refutation of it, are published here." (Christopher Monckton, SPPI)

Chuck it again, Schmidt! A Response to Gavin Schmidt’s Critique - For the second time, the FalseClimate propaganda blog, founded by two co-authors of the now-discredited “hockey-stick” graph by which the UN’s climate panel tried unsuccessfully to abolish the mediaeval warm period, has launched a malevolent, scientifically-illiterate, and unscientifically-ad-hominem attack on a publication by me. My 8000-word pape, Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered, was published in Physics and Society in July 2008, after a request from the editors that I should submit a paper setting out the methods by which the UN had overstated the likely warming in response to doubling the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. (Christopher Monckton, SPPI)

Monckton’s litany - Christopher, Viscount Monkton of Brenchley, is a good scholar and a fine writer. This clever recital pulls no punches but you may feel like responding 'amen' (at least you might…if you were a 'dissenter') (Peter Gallagher)

Putting on AIRS - Recently we’ve been discussing products for the AIRS satellite instrument (Atmospheric InfraRed Sounder) onboard the on board the Aqua satellite. For example we’ve been looking at the only global image we can find of Co2 from its data made in 2003, wondering where the remainder of them are.

In my digging I discovered that the Apache webserver had open directory listings for folders, and this allowed me to explore a bit to see what I could find. in the \images folder I found a few images that I did not see published on the AIRS website. I’ve saved them to my server should they go offline, but have provided links to the original source URL. (Watts Up With That?)

Wow! Actually includes some historical context: 7-square-mile ice sheet breaks loose in Canada - EDMONTON, Alberta — A chunk of ice spreading across seven square miles has broken off a Canadian ice shelf in the Arctic, scientists said Tuesday.

Derek Mueller, a researcher at Trent University, was careful not to blame global warming, but said the event was consistent with the theory that the current Arctic climate isn't rebuilding ice sheets.

"We're in a different climate now," he said. "It's not conducive to regrowing them. It's a one-way process."

Mueller said the sheet broke away last week from the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf off the north coast of Ellesmere Island in Canada's far north. He said a crack in the shelf was first spotted in 2002 and a survey this spring found a network of fissures.

The sheet is the biggest piece shed by one of Canada's six ice shelves since the Ayles shelf broke loose in 2005 from the coast of Ellesmere, about 500 miles from the North Pole.

Formed by accumulating snow and freezing meltwater, ice shelves are large platforms of thick, ancient sea ice that float on the ocean's surface. Ellesmere Island was once entirely ringed by a single enormous ice shelf that broke up in the early 1900s.

At 170 square miles and 130 feet thick, the Ward Hunt shelf is the largest of those remnants. Mueller said it has been steadily declining since the 1930s. (Associated Press) [em added]

Think Failure - I see that Team Soros over at “Think Progress” today provide a glimpse into the games that statists play to advance their dreams of a CO2 (which for the foreseeable future means “energy”) rationing scheme. Controlling the number of emissions ration coupons for energy use provides an unprecedented level of economic control — unprecedented in democracies, anyway – far more than merely taxing energy would. (Chris Horner, Planet Gore)

Japan Says to Start Trial Carbon Trading in Oct - TOKYO - Japan, under pressure to meet emission reduction targets set by the Kyoto Protocol, approved an October start for the trial trading of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas blamed for global warming. (Reuters)

Australians Strongly Back Carbon Trade Scheme - Poll - CANBERRA - Australians overwhelmingly back government plans to introduce one of the world's biggest carbon trading schemes, a poll found on Tuesday, despite a lack of detail about how much it will cost and how it will work.

Extraordinary, if true. So disinterested in the whole gorebull warming thing are Australians that :

While polls consistently tell us people want action to stem global warming and are prepared to make sacrifices to get it, the answer — emissions trading, now spun as a carbon pollution reduction scheme — remains esoteric. Widely agreed to be the most important transformation of the economy in a generation, the fine detail of emissions trading bores people so much that it failed to entice a single talkback caller when Climate Change Minister Penny Wong was on ABC Melbourne local radio just five days after her blueprint was launched. (The Age)

Climate mafia has us fooled - VESTED interests have hijacked the climate debate, and taken Australia's future hostage. The ransom they demand? Simple agreement or, at the very least, compliance.

Voices of dissent face derision. Legitimate questions are met with ridicule. But with many of the squabbling forces of power in this country now apparently united in their enthusiasm for an emissions trading scheme, it is more important than ever that we go back and examine the basis of their campaigns. (The Australian)

Sand in the Gears - The Carbon Sense Coalition submission to the Enquiry into Mandatory Renewable Energy Schemes [PDF, 80KB]

Australian Carbon Costs to Hurt Food Exports - Farmers - SYDNEY - Australian food production and exports could be cut when carbon trading starts from mid-2010, Australia's biggest farmers' group said on Tuesday, with the price of carbon to add to already hefty price rises for fuel. (Reuters)

Our shaky hold on greenhouse infamy - IT is not a list you want to top, but the reality is set out in the Garnaut report: Australia is the largest per capita emitter of greenhouse gases in the world. However, the title is misleading. (The Australian)

An orgy of climate self-satisfaction (Stephen Matchett, The Australian)

OpEd: North vs. South 2.0 - In the 70s and 80s it became trendy to talk about the global gap between “North” and “South,” in the sense that the rich countries that are mostly in the North of the planet were exploiting the poor countries to the south. That was actually an exercise in blame deflection, with the poor countries blaming the North for problems that arose from their own poor choices, such as a predilection for socialism and corruption. Today, however, there is another North vs. South conflict developing. This time, the cause is global warming, and the complaints of the South deserve much more consideration. (Iain Murray, Diplomatic Courier)

CO2 - “well mixed” or mixed signals? - One of the few things that BOTH sides of the Carbon Dioxide and AGW debate seem to be able to agree on is the belief that CO2, as a trace gas, is “well-mixed” in the atmosphere. Keeling’s measurements at Mauna Loa and other locations worldwide rely on this being true, so that “hotspots” aren’t being inadvertently measured. (Watts Up with That)

Researchers say China's export trade impacts climate - Carnegie Mellon University's Christopher L. Weber argues that China's new title as the world's largest greenhouse gas emitter is at least partly due to consumption of Chinese goods in the West. (Carnegie Mellon University)

So it's your fault anyway. Nyah!

Greenland’s “melting” ice sheets “will raise sea level 23 feet" - The scare: An article in the New York Times in late July 2008 by an author promoting a forthcoming book about “global warming” calls the Greenland ice-sheet “one of ‘global warming’s’ most disturbing threats”. The article says: “The vast expanses of glaciers — massed, on average, 1.6 miles deep — contain enough water to raise sea levels worldwide by 23 feet. Should they melt or otherwise slip into the ocean, they would flood coastal capitals, submerge tropical islands and generally redraw the world’s atlases. The infusion of fresh water could slow or shut down the ocean’s currents, plunging Europe into bitter winter.”

The article continues that ocean warming eats the ice sheet from beneath, causing glaciers to calve and melt faster, changing patterns of migration and hence of hunting, which, it says, has a positive effect: warm-water cod have returned, and shops can now offer locally-grown vegetables. Recession of ice along the shore has exposed pockets of lead, zinc, and bauxite. More than 30 billion barrels of oil may also be reachable if there is further melting. Yet the thrust of the article is Apocalyptic. (SPPI)

More ice than expected in parts of the Arctic - New data from the Norwegian Meteorological Institute shows that there is more ice than normal in the Arctic waters north of the Svalbard archipelago.

In most years, there are open waters in the area north of the archipelago in July month. Studies from this year however show that the area is covered by ice, the Meteorological Institute writes in a press release. (Barents Observer)

As pointed out here for many years: Bangladesh gaining land, not losing: scientists - New data shows that Bangladesh's landmass is increasing, contradicting forecasts that the South Asian nation will be under the waves by the end of the century, experts say.

Scientists from the Dhaka-based Center for Environment and Geographic Information Services (CEGIS) have studied 32 years of satellite images and say Bangladesh's landmass has increased by 20 square kilometres (eight square miles) annually. (AFP)

Hurricane Dolly may have shrunk Gulf 'dead zone' - The oxygen-starved "dead zone" that forms every summer in the Gulf of Mexico is a bit smaller than predicted this year because Hurricane Dolly stirred up the water, a scientist reported Monday. (AP)

Well, yes, storms increase mixing and oxygenation -- big storms also cool the planet by transporting latent and sensible heat high in the atmosphere, bypassing most greenhouse absorbers and facilitating heat loss to space, too (but that doesn't mean we should hope for more of them).

The 21st century Pardoners Tale: a complete comparison between Indulgences and Carbon Credits - Geoffrey Chaucer (c.1342 - 1400) is among the giants of English literature recognized for his perceptive and realistic stories about human nature. He did this by creating individual characters who were a broad representation of groups of people. Like Shakespeare, he produced stories that are instantly recognizable at any time in history and in any society. In his most famous work, The Canterbury Tales he introduces a number of characters traveling together on a pilgrimage. He does this with what Paul Johnson describes as, “ a lethal combination of satire, irony, and sarcasm.”

We recognize almost all the characters even if some do not exist today such as knights. One we are unfamiliar with, in name at least is the Pardoner. Johnson describes him as follows, “The Pardoner, a seller of indulgences, is a complete and shameless rogue; but Chaucer, not content with exposing his impudence, shows how good he was at his job and how powerfully he preached against sinfulness. The Pardoner had also been taught to use the figure of death to scare his hearers.” So the Pardoner sold indulgences or pardons, hence his name.

If we just had the Pardoner and the tale he told to entertain his fellow pilgrims it would be interesting, but not expose the true meaning of his tale and the duplicity and hypocrisy of the character. Hypocrisy is the one thing people despise in any aspect of life, but especially in religious and political leaders. Chaucer cleverly provides us with a prologue in which the Pardoner, as if talking off the record, explains his activities and motives and exposes his hypocrisy.

We see behind the facade and learn of his cynical view of human nature and how he exploits their weaknesses and fears for his financial gain. (Dr. Tim Ball, CFP)

Join the Bloggers: Check the Temperature Data - I was interviewed by journalist John Stewart on ABC TV’s Lateline program tonight.

The segment was about global warming with a focus on blogging.

Mr Stewart made the claim that the only place where the science is still debated is on the internet amongst bloggers. In fact we were accused of still “attacking” the science of global warming.

Interestingly Andrew Bolt was not described as one a News Ltd columnist but rather as a skeptic and a blogger. He was shown making the point that there has been no increase in global temperatures for ten years.

I was also as described as a blogger and also shown making the point that over the last 10 years it hasn’t got any warmer.

If Mr Stewart had gone to the trouble of checking the internationally recognised sources of real world (as opposed to computer generated) data on global temperatures he would have been able to confirm that what Mr Bolt and I said was correct: there has been no warming over the last ten years. (Jennifer Marohasy)

The Missing Greenhouse Signature - Each possible cause of global warming has a different pattern of where in the planet the warming occurs first and the most. The signature of an increased greenhouse effect is a hotspot about 10 km up in the atmosphere over the tropics. We have been measuring the atmosphere for decades using radiosondes - weather balloons with thermometers that radio back the temperature as the balloon ascends through the atmosphere. They show no hotspot whatsoever. So an increased greenhouse effect is not the cause of the recent global warming. So we now know for sure that carbon emissions are not a significant cause of the global warming. (David Evans, Science Speak)

Global Warming and the Faith of the Brainwashed - That global warming has continued to captivate the media, car companies, energy companies and so many more demonstrates how enormously brainwashed Americans are. Still convinced that “the entire global scientific community has a consensus on the question that human beings are responsible for global warming,” like Al Gore purported? Please. (Nathaniel Shockey, Northern Star)

Oh... Study shows most health department directors see climate change as looming health threat - A new study from George Mason University reveals that while a majority of U.S. health department directors believe their city or county will have serious public health problems as a result of climate change within the next 20 years, very few of them have planned or implemented activities to detect, prevent or adapt to these health threats. (George Mason University)

Alternate headline: Study shows most health department directors either gullible of willing to use baseless scares to raise budgets.

Getting Something Off On Your Chest

A comical T-shirt spied in Chicago this weekend (which you can find here): (Henry Payne, Planet Gore)

From CO2 Science this week:

European Forests: Carbon Sequestration vs. Biofuel: Will the ever-increasing carbon sequestering prowess of Europe's forests be totally destroyed by an irrational ramp-up of the continent's biofuels industry?

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
Was there a Medieval Warm Period? YES, according to data published by 566 individual scientists from 340 separate research institutions in 38 different countries ... and counting! This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from the Yangtze River Delta, China. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Weeds (Non-Parasitic - Competitiveness): How will the competitiveness of non-parasitic weeds be influenced by the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 content in the years and decades ahead?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Cacao, Olive Tree, Wheat (Biomass), and Wheat (Photosynthesis).

Journal Reviews:
Is the Upper Ocean Warming?: The question is tackled by a pair of researchers who compare different ways of analyzing the pertinent data.

Climatic Implications of an Eastern Canadian Boreal Forest Fire History: What are they?

The Medieval Warm Period in Southeastern Mexico: What was its predominant characteristic? ... and what impact did it have on the region's inhabitants?

Soil Water Balance in a Warmer CO2-Enriched Netherlands: Will it likely be enhanced or reduced?

Isoprene vs. Ozone in a CO2-Enriched and Warmer Europe: Will there be more or less of the former to help or hurt the production of the latter?

New London, WITemperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from New London, WI. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, New London's mean annual temperature has cooled by 0.99 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here! (

And again: Acidification of the sea hampers reproduction of marine species - Within 100 years, it is reckoned that the world's seas will be three times as acidic as they are now. The lower pH may strike a severe blow to the ability of marine species to reproduce, according to research on sea urchins at the University of Gothenburg. "Acidification may be the biggest threat to marine ecosystems for hundreds of thousands of years," says Jon Havenhand, a researcher at the department of marine ecology. (Swedish Research Council)

Marine species that managed to breed successfully when atmospheric carbon levels were significantly higher than any human contribution can possibly make them, so it's highly unlikely that activist scare stories with frighten them out of continuing to do so, isn't it?

WTO failure bodes ill for climate change: delegates - The failure of key powers to agree a new pact on global trade does not bode well for international cooperation in other areas such as climate change, top delegates warned Tuesday. (AFP)

Shame about the trade but if it helps kill off this climate nonsense then a net benefit.

Canada's role at the WTO - The Doha deal may not have been worth saving (Terence Corcoran, Financial Post)

Low climate sensitivity and other inconvenient truths - In case I haven't yet linked it, here is the English translation of an introductory text of mine about climate change: Word file (click) or .pdf version. It is several months old. (The Reference Frame)

Leonard Susskind, global warming, and groupthink - Leonard Susskind's new book is selling very well. An user named Collosus [sic] wrote an interesting 3-star review: (The Reference Frame)

T. Boone’s Stake: Oil Tycoon’s Got a Dog In California Energy Fight - Is oilman billionaire T. Boone Pickens—gasp—not an altruist after all?

We’ve wondered just who would pay for the “Pickens Plan,” the idea to wean America off foreign oil by using wind power for electricity and natural gas for transportation. Both wind power and natural gas need big investments in infrastructure for the plan to work. From the L.A. Times today, an answer:

Well, Californians can clarify exactly whose dime it will be: Ours. Along with being the country’s biggest wind power developer, Pickens owns Clean Energy Fuels Corp., a natural gas fueling station company that is the sole backer of the stealthy Proposition 10 on California’s November ballot. This measure would authorize the sale of $5 billion in general fund bonds to provide alternative energy rebates and incentives — but by the time the principal and the interest is paid off, it would squander at least $9.8 billion in taxpayer money on Pickens’ self-serving natural gas agenda. (WSJ)

China Coal Shortages Strain Shanxi Environment - Media - BEIJING - China's worsening coal shortages have exerted unprecedented pressure on Shanxi, the country's top coal-producing region, to push output beyond approved levels and worsening environmental strains, official media reported on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Oil Explodes: Valero, Its Earnings Crimped, Takes Fire at Capitol Hill - Thanks to high oil prices, Big Oil has caught a lot of heat–from consumers, from Washington, from seemingly everybody as the energy debate heats up. Now, Big Oil is striking back at Washington.

Valero Energy, one of the biggest U.S. refiners, is out of sorts after profits collapsed in the second quarter. Chairman and CEO Bill Kleese tore into Beltway prescriptions for the energy mess:

“We can manage industry challenges, but unfortunately, reckless rhetoric in Washington, D.C. complicates our forward progress. Too many in Congress fail to appreciate our industry’s efficiencies, they won’t acknowledge the excellent jobs we provide, they ignore the taxes we pay, and worst of all, many in Congress are more interested in scoring populist political points than reducing energy costs. To not allow companies to look for oil and gas when there are huge potential reserves in the U.S. is irresponsible. Instead, Congress wants to provide subsidies for inefficient technologies. Instead of solutions, they want to reduce CO2 emissions without regard for the economy. The direction we see Congress moving is not good for consumers, our shareholders, or our country. We will continue to advocate sound policies based on facts and market realities. (WSJ)

They have a target! Martin Ferguson sets target for coal power - FEDERAL Resources Minister Martin Ferguson has set a target of 2015-20 for a commercial breakthrough on low-emissions coal-fired power technology. (The Australian)

Biofuels Major Driver of Food Price Rise - World Bank - WASHINGTON - Large increases in biofuels production in the United States and Europe are the main reason behind the steep rise in global food prices, a top World Bank economist said in research published on Monday. (Reuters)

Does banning hotdogs and bacon make sense? (Junkfood Science)

Estimating Mortality Risk Reduction and Economic Benefits from Controlling Ozone Air Pollution - In light of recent evidence on the relationship of ozone to mortality and questions about its implications for benefit analysis, the Environmental Protection Agency asked the National Research Council to establish a committee of experts to evaluate independently the contributions of recent epidemiologic studies to understanding the size of the ozone-mortality effect in the context of benefit analysis. The committee was also asked to assess methods for estimating how much a reduction in short-term exposure to ozone would reduce premature deaths, to assess methods for estimating associated increases in life expectancy, and to assess methods for estimating the monetary value of the reduced risk of premature death and increased life expectancy in the context of health-benefits analysis.

Estimating Mortality Risk Reduction and Economic Benefits from Controlling Ozone Air Pollution details the committee's findings and posits several recommendations to address these issues. (NAP)

Prenatal cell phone exposure tied to behavior - NEW YORK - Children whose mothers used cell phones frequently during pregnancy and who are themselves cell phone users are more likely to have behavior problems, new research shows. (Reuters Health)

If Mom & the sprog are constantly on cells it suggests there's a lot lacking in the family life -- someone is surprised this might be a marker for behavioral problems?

10 Things to Scratch From Your Worry List (John Tierney, New York Times)

Bowing to environmentalists - Let's face it. The average individual American has little or no clout with Congress and can be safely ignored. But it's a different story with groups such as Environmental Defense Fund, Sierra Club and The Nature Conservancy. When they speak, Congress listens. Unlike the average American, they are well organized, loaded with cash and well positioned to be a disobedient congressman's worse nightmare. Their political and economic success has been a near disaster for our nation.

For several decades, environmentalists have managed to get Congress to keep most of our oil resources off-limits to exploration and drilling. They've gotten Congress enact onerous regulations that have made refinery construction impossible. Similarly, they've used the courts and Congress to completely stymie the construction of nuclear power plants. As a result, energy prices are at historical highs and threaten our economy and national security. (Walter Williams, Charlotte Observer)

Obama's Global Tax - A plan by Barack Obama to redistribute American wealth on a global level is moving forward in the Senate. It follows Marxist theology — from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. (IBD)

GM crop trial halted after crop destruction - A trial of genetically modified potatoes that could help protect billions of pounds worth of crops from disease is to be abandoned after scientists admitted it was futile to conduct such research on crops in the UK. The scientists claim that sabotage by environmental protesters has made it too expensive to conduct GM crop trials in this country under the current regulations, that require the exact location of each trial to be made public. (Daily Telegraph)

Farmers make hay thanks to food crisis - Profits for Britain's 30,000 grain farmers will increase by 40 per cent this year because of global food shortages, agricultural analysts said yesterday.

The wheat harvest, which will begin over the next fortnight, is likely to be the biggest since 2000, according to the Home Grown Cereals Authority, and is expected to come in at around 16.5 million tonnes. This compares with an average of 14 to 14.5 million tonnes in recent years, and a low point last year when torrential rains cut the crop to 13.2 million.

But this year, the ending of the EU's set-aside schemes and the attraction of higher global grain prices have led to a surge in planting, with the total cereals area across Britain up by an astonishing 13 per cent in just 12 months and wheat alone up by 14 per cent. Whereas two or three years ago wheat was selling at about £70 per tonne, following the dramatic price rises that began across the world last summer, the figure now is more like £120-£140, depending on quality. The peak was more than £160 per tonne earlier this year. (The Independent)

U.S. Won’t Release Land in Conservation Program - WASHINGTON — Amid improving harvest expectations for this year, the United States agriculture secretary, Ed Schafer, said Tuesday that he would not lift penalties for farmers who plant crops on land set aside for conservation.

Bakers and livestock owners had mounted an intense lobbying effort to erase the penalties in order to increase the harvest and lower high crop prices. The pressure intensified in June after floods washed away farm fields in the Midwest, leading to fears of a poor harvest.

But Mr. Schafer said recent forecasts indicated a larger crop than had seemed likely in the days and weeks after the flooding. In addition, he said that corn prices had plummeted 25 percent from record highs earlier this year, while soybean prices were down 14 percent.

“We don’t feel that the corn and soybean crops will be as bad as we originally feared,” he said. (New York Times)

Fears over trees due to new safety proposals - Homeowners may cut trees down rather than face annual inspections proposed under new safety rules.

A tree near a road or path would have to be inspected by 'a trained person' every three years and by an expert every five years at the owner's expense under guidelines proposed by the British Standards Institution (BSI).

But environmental groups say there is only a 1 in 10,000,000 chance of being killed by a falling tree and that the proposals are the latest example of threats blown out of proportion by a health and safety culture. (Daily Telegraph)

July 29, 2008

Oil: Campaigners seek an end to production of CO2-intensive 'unconventional fuels' - Shell, BP and other oil companies at the centre of the tar sands revolution in Canada are facing a backlash from the Co-operative and other members of the ethical investment community determined to bring a halt to these operations for environmental reasons.

A joint report from Co-operative Investments and the wildlife charity WWF released today will be followed up in September by a meeting of the UK Social Investment Forum (UKSIF) to press for an end to this carbon-intensive activity. (The Guardian)

If you don't want to profit from the oil business then get out -- bet you can sell your oil shares at a profit to people glad to get them: BP profits hit record $13.4bn on soaring oil price (The Times). See also Poseur Shareholders

Hansen Update - No single topic seems to arouse as much blog animosity as any discussion of Hansen’s projections. Although NASA employees are not permitted to do private work for their bosses off-hours (a currying favor prohibition, I suppose) - for example, secretaries are not supposed to do typing, over at realclimate, Gavin Schmidt, in his “private time”, which flexibly includes 9 to 5, has provided bulldog services on behalf of his boss, James Hansen, on a number of occasions. (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

Climate Change Delusion By Proxy - Since the first case of the psychiatric disorder ‘climate change delusion‘ was diagnosed in an Australian patient earlier this month, commentators have suggested that the symptoms expressed by Al Gore and the like point to the condition being a rather common one. Indeed, it seems that the medical profession itself is not immune. John Guillebaud, professor of family planning at University College London, confesses all to the Guardian: (Climate Resistance)

Lonely voice of dissent declared valid - There is something odd about the ferocious amount of energy expended suppressing any dissent from orthodoxy on climate change. After all, the climate cataclysmists have won the war of public opinion - for now, at least - with polls, business, media and Government enthusiastically on board.

So, if their case is so good, why try so fervently to extinguish other points of view? There is a disturbingly religious zeal in the attempts to silence critics and portray them as the moral equivalent of holocaust deniers. (Miranda Devine, Sydney Morning Herald)

Who's swindling who? (Lorne Gunter, National Post)

Check it out and see what you think. Get your copy and help at the same time!

The Strange Death of the Tory Climate Crusade - Britain’s Conservative Party tried to exploit global warming alarmism. It backfired enormously. Lesson learned?

With less than two years remaining until the next general election, Britain’s Conservative Party has surged to an historic 22-point opinion-poll lead over the incumbent Labour Party. This turnabout has followed an energetic campaign by the Tory leader, David Cameron, to wrench the party out of its ideological comfort zone and overhaul its public image. Cameron has indeed handled many issues deftly. However, his initial attempt to spark a bidding war over climate alarmism backfired enormously, and it should serve as a warning to other Western political parties that are trying to burnish their green credentials. (Matthew Sinclair and Chris Pope, The American)

A Matter Of Facts - When Barack Obama brought up global warming during last week's Berlin speech, his lecture resonated with the audience — but not with the truth. (IBD)

Snapshot of past climate reveals no ice in Antarctica millions of years ago - A snapshot of New Zealand's climate 40 million years ago reveals a greenhouse Earth, with warmer seas and little or no ice in Antarctica, according to research published this week in the journal Geology.

Hmm... that would certainly appear to fit with relatively uncontroversial claims Antarctica's ice age began 2-30 million years ago and peaked 2-3 million years ago. Is it really worth a press release to announce pre-ice age Antarctica was not actually icy?

How not to measure temperature, part 68 - I don’t know what it is with weather stations at some universities. Of course we have the station at University of Arizona Tucson in the parking lot, and this one isn’t too far from that arrangement. It has a long and uninterrupted history, but what is it really measuring? (Watts Up With That?)

Wong's climate paper clouded with mistakes - The Government's advisory channels are clogged with rent seekers, special pleaders and green activists who have misadvised the minister. (Bob Carter, The Age)

You wouldn’t be bored if the end really was nigh (Andrew Bolt)

Sydney weather hail, not snow - T looked like snow, and it felt like snow, but in what may come as a disappointment to Sydneysiders, today's winter whiteness was just soft hail.
Just after 3.30pm (AEST) this afternoon the area around Lindfield, Roseville and Killara became blanketed in white as a thunderstorm brought a winter wonderland to parts of northern Sydney.

But despite some hope that metropolitan Sydney had experienced its first recorded snowfall since 1836, the Bureau of Meteorology said northern Sydney had just been blanketed in hail. (AAP)

There' sno denying it, it was as cold as a witch's thorax. Neither is there any proof what was recorded as snow in 1836 was any different from that which occurred this week. Back in 1836 they had the result of a powerful volcanic eruption to deal with:

This eruption of Coseguina was blamed for the cool [northern] summer of 1836. That summer was nearly as cold as the summer of 1816 in western Pennsylvania and northeastern Ohio. There were frosts in every month of the year, and the only true summer weather was limited to the first 14 days of September. In fact, during the period 1817-1890, 1836 had the coldest summer of record.

Here in "Beautiful one day, perfect the next" Queensland, we had snow and snowmen were seen in Sydney. We don't know of any recent massive volcanic eruptions though, so what's the excuse this time?

While the K.Rudd government might have thought itself very clever slipping out their draconian proposals to redistribute wealth, oh, and cool the planet, during the Pope's visit and World Youth Day celebrations down-under, they kind of forgot the ambience thing -- people are not too concerned about gorebull warming when they are freezing their whatsits off!

Snow greets visiting hikers at Mount Rainier - PARADISE, Wash. -- Cool ocean temperatures in the southern Pacific Ocean -- a phenomenon known as La Nina -- chilled sunny expectations this summer for thousands of visitors to Mount Rainier National Park.

Those who arrived here in July planning to backpack or hike its famous sub-alpine wildflower meadows found snow instead, six feet in places, though sunny daytime temperatures reach into the 70s. (Grand Rapids Press)

Huh... guess it'll be a while longer before gorebull warming eliminates the snowpack.

The worst of Andy: Climate Experts Tussle Over Details. Public Gets Whiplash. - When science is testing new ideas, the result is often a two-papers-forward-one-paper-back intellectual tussle among competing research teams.

When the work touches on issues that worry the public, affect the economy or polarize politics, the news media and advocates of all stripes dive in. Under nonstop scrutiny, conflicting findings can make news coverage veer from one extreme to another, resulting in a kind of journalistic whiplash for the public.

This has been true for decades in health coverage. But lately the phenomenon has been glaringly apparent on the global warming beat.

Discordant findings have come in quick succession. How fast is Greenland shedding ice? Did human-caused warming wipe out frogs in the American tropics? Has warming strengthened hurricanes? Have the oceans stopped warming? These questions endure even as the basic theory of a rising human influence on climate has steadily solidified: accumulating greenhouse gases will warm the world, erode ice sheets, raise seas and have big impacts on biology and human affairs. (New York Times)

Andy tries hard but just can't overcome his advocacy. Basic greenhouse theory says enhanced greenhouse will be unnoticeably small, so do observations -- what Andy is talking about is unfounded hysteria hyped by the Gores of this world and supported by advocate research crafted either to keep the grants coming or provide cover for social engineering.

Penn and Teller on Carbon Credits - Magicians and Illusionists Penn and Teller have a popular TV show on the Showtime channel called, ahem, “Bullshit”. In homage to their debunking mentor, James Randi, they take on a number of subjects they feel could use a little “clarity”. - They recently (last Thursday night) took on Al Gore and carbon credits. The entire 30 minute show is available via the website VREEL (Watts Up With That?)

Oh dear... Editorial: A challenge to us all - Al Gore’s call to radically change the way we generate electricity in just a decade will require a lot of money and a lot of sacrifice, but it also will pay plenty of dividends. (Journal Sentinel)

Editorial: Making it happen - Gov. Jim Doyle’s global warming task force has provided lawmakers with a good starting point for meeting the challenge of climate change. (Journal Sentinel)

A looming threat on warming issue - The Lieberman-Warner global warming bill, defeated in June after a bruising congressional debate, was a potentially destructive collection of economy-killing, freedom-stifling, costly government interferences and impositions. (JDNews)

Important New Research On The Role Of Aerosols On Precipitation By Professor Chidong Zhang - Professor Chidong Zhang of the University of Miami presented an important talk on June 19 2008 at NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory entitled “Climatic Effect of Aerosol on Tropical Rainfall: Evidence from Satellite Observations.” (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

New Piece Of Climate Change Puzzle Found In Ancient Sedimentary Rocks - University of Massachusetts Amherst researchers have added a new source of carbon dioxide to the complex climate change puzzle by showing that ancient rocks can release substantial amounts of organic matter into Earth’s rivers and oceans, and that this organic matter is easily converted by bacteria to carbon dioxide, which enters the atmosphere and contributes to climate change.

“Sedimentary rocks contain the largest mass of organic carbon on Earth, but these reservoirs are not well-integrated into modern carbon budgets” says Steven Petsch, a professor of geosciences. “Since we need to know the budget of the natural carbon cycle in order to determine human climate impacts, this information will lead to more accurate climate modeling.” The research was conducted by Petsch and UMass Amherst graduate student Sarah Schillawski. (ScienceDaily)

Well yes, the change from "woefully inaccurate" to "slightly less woefully accurate" can be expressed as "more accurate" climate models but that still doesn't make them worth squat as far prognostics go.

Scientists who study the Earth's climate say humans are making it warmer - FAIRBANKS—Twenty thousand years ago, it was so cold in North America -- and had been for so long -- that much of the continent was covered by ice two miles thick.

A hundred and five thousand years before that, it was so warm that giant ice caps melted and the oceans rose 15 feet above their current levels.

The climate has been changing on its own since long before coal-fired power plants and SUVs. In the last 150,000 years, the Earth as a whole has been a few degrees warmer than it is now and many degrees cooler.

So how do scientists know humans are causing the planet to warm now?

Here’s an attempt to answer that question. (Stefan Milkowski, Daily News-Miner)

And Apollo astronaut says aliens are here... someone says is not just that compelling, is it?

Turf defense: Warm to sceptical science - YOU'VE no doubt come across a few opinion columns over the past year which claim that global warming has stopped. Or that we are heading into a new ice age. (Barry Brook, Herald Sun)

Barry Brook heads Adelaide University's research institute for climate change and sustainability. He is also a judge of the Green Awards for 2008. 'nuff said?

Actually Barry might find he gets a lot more spirited response than he bargained for, "rockdoctor of brisbane" appears ready to engage :)

Bolt responds: Seven graphs to embarrass a warming professor (Andrew Bolt Blog)

Capitol Matters: Little-noticed law urges officials to pay attention to climate changes - HARRISBURG — The creation of a $650 million state fund to spur development of alternative energy sources is one of the heralded achievements of the spring legislative session.

Little attention has been paid to a new state law that tackles an issue closely identified with the search for energy that doesn’t come from fossil fuels: global warming.

This law directs state officials to pay closer attention to what’s called the impact of climate change in Pennsylvania. (Republican Herald)

The Democrats' Energy Charade - Earlier this month the House of Representatives voted on an energy bill called the Drill Responsibly in Leased Lands (Drill) Act. The good news, for those of us who actually want to do something to lower gas prices, is that it failed.

The bad news is that Democrats will try again before the November elections. We can expect more legislation that claims to increase production, but in reality offers a framework of heavy regulation, litigation and union rules that could prevent new energy supplies from getting to market. And we can expect legislation that would likely hamper current oil and gas exploration. (Michele Bachmann, Wall Street Journal)

Had Enough Of Eco-Lobby's Energy Prices? - The dramatic escalation in the price of oil — a 40% spike just this year — has many Americans in a heightened state of anxiety.

Not only are soaring gas prices causing shock and fear at the household level, but commercial heavy fuel users such as trucking, shipping, and airlines are significantly reducing services, laying off workers, and increasing fares. For consumers, this means much higher prices for all goods and services.

With natural gas prices also climbing, utility companies are raising rates, some by as much as 29% beginning July 1. This is on top of the 30% rate increase consumers have paid over the past five years.

Yet, for all the uneasiness over super-heated oil prices, which some analysts have predicted will reach $200-a-barrel by year's end, both consumers and business leaders seem bewildered at the state of their predicament. (IBD)

Coal Juice: High Energy Prices Prompt First U.S. Coal-to-Liquids Plant - It’s far from clear that higher energy prices are environmentalists’ friend. Though they might eventually spur clean energy, they’re doing a good bit of the opposite right now.

Today’s energy prices—and just as importantly, growing concern over energy security—are driving ever-dirtier energy solutions, from Canadian tar sands, to a rush to develop shale oil and gas in the U.S., to a dash away from natural gas and back toward coal. The latest unintended consequence? America’s first coal-to-liquids plant, to be built in West Virginia. (WSJ)

Transportation Hit Tipping Point As Gasoline Breached $4 A Gallon - When Barack Obama told environmentally conscious voters earlier this summer that "we can't drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times," he probably didn't realize how close he already was to the truth. (IBD)

Fuel Subsidies Overseas Take a Toll on U.S. - JAKARTA, Indonesia — To understand why fuel prices in the United States have soared over the last year, it helps to talk to the captain of a battered wooden freighter here.

He pays just $2.30 a gallon for diesel, the same price Indonesian motorists pay for regular gasoline. His vessel burns diesel by the barrel, so when the government prepared for a limited price increase this spring, he took to the streets to protest.

“If the government increases the price of fuel any more, my business will collapse totally,” said the boat captain, Sinar, who like many Indonesians uses only one name.

From Mexico to India to China, governments fearful of inflation and street protests are heavily subsidizing energy prices, particularly for diesel fuel. But the subsidies — estimated at $40 billion this year in China alone — are also removing much of the incentive to conserve fuel.

The oil company BP, known for thorough statistical analysis of energy markets, estimates that countries with subsidies accounted for 96 percent of the world’s increase in oil use last year — growth that has helped drive prices to record levels.

In most countries that do not subsidize fuel, high prices have caused oil demand to stagnate or fall, as economic theory says they should. But in countries with subsidies, demand is still rising steeply, threatening to outstrip the growth in global supplies. (New York Times)

How Low Would They Go? . . . to renew the environmentally alarmist and economically and strategically reckless ban on outer-continental-shelf drilling which expires September 30 unless Congress acts affirmatively to extend it? How low would a minority in Congress, guided by the harmful anti-energy "environmentalist" lobby, go to continue the moratorium on exploration and production of domestic energy sources?

Someone involved in the effort to avoid such inanity informs me that "there may be a move to put the extension in the Veterans approps bill [this] week". That is, they would condition spending on veterans upon acceptance of a new prohibition on tapping estimated massive reserves of our own oil and gas. (Chris Horner, Planet Gore)

'Big oil' label turns in candidate's favor - DENVER — Bob Schaffer's opponents have spent the past two months tarring him as "Big Oil Bob," an advocate of oil drilling and an energy-industry insider. Maybe he should thank them.

Two polls show Mr. Schaffer, the Colorado Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, has erased a double-digit deficit and pulled within a nose of Democratic foe Mark Udall.

The reason, according to one poll, lies in fuel prices. Since gas hit $4 a gallon here, a majority of Colorado voters have come out in favor of offshore oil drilling and exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, said a Quinnipiac Poll released last week. (Washington Times)

Yes, Virginia, Yellowcake Is Safe - Interesting piece by the Manhattan Institute’s Max Schulz in Saturday’s WSJ on Virginia’s vast uranium deposits (“the largest undeveloped uranium deposit in the United States — and the seventh largest in the world, according to industry monitor UX Consulting”): (Drew Thornley, Planet Gore)

Kicking the Tires of T. Boone's Natural-Gas Car - New York Times columnist Tom Friedman Sunday pines for billionaire-friendly central planning on energy so that his green dreams might be forced down our collective throats:

“If only we had a Congress and president who. . . just sat down with Boone (Pickens). . . and asked one question: 'What laws do we need to enact to foster 1,000 more like you?' Then just do it, and get out of the way.”

Laws mandating “green” schemes? Just do it. Market economics? Get out of the way. (Henry Payne, Planet Gore)

Government blamed over fuel costs - More than a third of people in the UK think the government is most to blame for high fuel prices, a poll for the BBC's Panorama programme suggests.

Some 38% said the government was primarily responsible, while 22% mostly blamed oil producing countries, and 20% pointed the finger at oil companies.

And 35% of those questioned said they were more likely to vote for a party offering to lower car and fuel taxes. (BBC)

Energy firms ‘conspire to raise prices’ - Energy companies stand accused today of overcharging customers, leaving millions of households struggling to pay gas and electricity bills.

A report claims that the six biggest energy companies conspire to keep charges artificially high and gives a warning of widespread hardship this winter unless the Government acts. (The Times)

Funny they didn't mention how much government regulations increase consumer cost, things like obligatory renewables obligation certificates add to costs that come out of consumers' pockets (it's how the government funds the largess bestowed upon subsidy wind farmers for nuisance amounts of electricity which real generators have to spend yet more money accommodating). And how much is government taxation adding to consumer costs?

EdF brings wind farms into BE deal - French energy giant Electricitie de France (EdF) may take a stake in Centrica's wind farms and other assets as part of a deal to bring the UK into its planned £11bn-plus takeover of nuclear generator British Energy (BE).

The UK Government, which owns 35.8pc, would like to see EdF back Centrica's wind farms. Ministers have laid down targets for energy companies to build 33 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2020. Three years ago, the industry estimated meeting this figure would mean investment of about £40bn. Today, the figure is £80bn. (Daily Telegraph)

Biofuels usage - FOR SOME time now, it has been obvious that biofuels will not provide the anticipated panacea to cope with rising carbon emissions and global warming. The amount of land that would have to be cultivated to provide the necessary raw materials to meet EU targets represents a major impediment. But, more importantly, the knock-on effect on world food prices makes the exercise morally and economically suspect. The production of alternative fuels should not be allowed to contribute to growing hunger in developing countries. (Irish Times)

Biofuels Down, Energy Saving Up in EU Climate Plan - BRUSSELS - Biofuels are down and energy efficiency measures are up as the European Union's ambitious plan to fight climate change works its way towards becoming law.

When EU leaders adopted bold headline goals last year to cut greenhouse gas emissions and promote renewable energy sources, they set a binding target of drawing 10 percent of transport fuel from biofuels derived from crops and biomass by 2020.

But with soaring world food prices blamed partly on competition for farmland from agri-fuel producers, biofuels are no longer the flavour of the month.

"What was hailed as a miracle solution 18 months ago is now being damned," French Ecology Minister Jean-Louis Borloo said after debating the issue with EU environment chiefs this month. (Reuters)

East Europeans Fear Climate Policy Pinch - GORNO OSENOVO, Bulgaria - Many pensioners in the Bulgarian village of Gorno Osenovo, who go to bed with the sunset and wake up at sunrise, have never heard of carbon dioxide. They don't get electricity either.

But a new plan by Brussels to make European Union energy companies pay for the carbon dioxide they emit from 2013 threatens to lift energy costs to the point where building grids to remote places like Gorno Osenovo would be impossible. (Reuters)

SAfrica Wants Carbon Capture at New Coal-Fired Plants - CAPE TOWN - South Africa wants all new coal-fired power stations and coal-to-liquid plants to have mandatory facilities to capture carbon dioxide emissions, a government minister said on Monday. (Reuters)

Project Hayes opponent disputes global warming - Cited environmental benefits of Meridian Energy's proposed Project Hayes wind farm were based on misleading scientific information, an Environment Court appeal hearing in Cromwell was told yesterday. (Otago Daily Times)

US appetites 'put bite on global food supply' - AFTER having dinner at Clyde's in Washington's trendy Chinatown, a young boy sluggishly gets up to follow his family to the exit. His waitress jokes, "You're stuffed, huh?"

The boy lets out a grunt, saying, "Yeah, I'm full. I feel like I'm going to burst," as he ambles to the door.

Such is the response of many customers who venture into the popular restaurant. One waitress said, "It depends on the dish, but I've never gotten a complaint that it's too little."

But with soaring food prices sparking protests in many countries and more than 800 million people going hungry every day, US food portions are under scrutiny.

A lightening of the American plate could ease pressure on worldwide demand, but not everyone is hopeful change will be coming any time soon. (Reuters)

Call for child 'fat report' cards - A controversial British plan to give all school kids "fat report" cards has been backed by several Australian experts as an important step to beat obesity Down Under.

The scheme, in which parents will be sent written notification of their children's weight, will be adopted in the UK in response to the obesity crisis - and many believe Australia should follow suit.

"We absolutely need to move down this track," said Professor Boyd Swinburn, an obesity prevention specialist at Deakin University in Melbourne. (AAP)

Japanese diet rich in fish may hold secret to healthy heart - If you're fishing for ways to reduce the risk of heart disease, you might start with the seafood-rich diet typically served up in Japan. According to new research, a lifetime of eating tuna, sardines, salmon and other fish appears to protect Japanese men against clogged arteries, despite other cardiovascular risk factors. (American College of Cardiology)

Actually, I think it must be all the whale they ate, especially in the post-WWII shortages. Everyone should have whale at least twice a week for heart health.

Super juices - While the courts are not the venue to decide science, a case in the news can raise awareness of a widespread consumer fraud. One of the hottest functional food fads is super antioxidants juices. The more exotic and intensely colored the juices, and the higher their ORAC counts, the healthier they’re claimed to be. Pomegranate juice is currently the marketing heavyweight. There are some 950 products being sold in the United States, all claiming to contain pomegranates. The problem is, “there aren’t enough pomegranate groves on the planet to supply the products in the marketplace,” said Lynda Resnick, owner of POM Wonderful, LLC.

Consumers are being scammed and aren’t always getting what they think they’re buying. (Junkfood Science)

Not the enviros' poster child: Professor Kunihiko Takeda - Professor Kunihiko Takeda, Ph.D., is vice-chancellor of the Institute of Science and Technology Research at Chubu University and one of the world's leading authorities on both uranium enrichment and recycling. The 65-year-old is also a bestselling author of books with titles such as “We Should Not Recycle!” “Recycled Illusions” and “Why Are Lies Accepted on Environmental Issues?” Professor Takeda should know why: Although a member of just about every prestigious academic and governmental entity, he has stayed independent and made a career out of challenging the establishment. He has never taken any garbage from anyone, not even during his 27-year tenure at Asahi Chemical Industries, where for five years he was director of the Uranium Enrichment Laboratory. He also kept his record clean as vice deputy president at the Shibaura Institute of Technology before joining Nagoya University in 2002. His fresh and original views are clear in his most recent book, “Hypocritical Ecology,” which has been flying off shelves at the speed of 100,000 a month since being published this June. (Japan Times)

Featured hit piece: The Patron Saint of Plastic Bags - In the pantheon of lost causes, defending the plastic grocery bag would seem to be right up there with supporting smoking on planes or the murder of puppies. The ubiquitous thin white bag has moved squarely beyond eyesore into the realm of public nuisance, a symbol of waste and excess and the incremental destruction of nature. But where there's an industry at risk, there's an attorney, and the plastic bag's advocate in chief is Stephen L. Joseph, head of the quixotically titled Save the Plastic Bag campaign. (Belinda Luscombe, Time)

Scientist raises interest in seawater farming - TASTIOTA, Mexico - A few miles inland from the Pacific Ocean, amid cracked earth and mesquite and sun-bleached cactus, neat rows of emerald plants sprout from the desert floor.

The crop is salicornia. It is nourished by seawater flowing from a manmade canal. And if you believe the American who is farming it, this incongruous swath of green has the potential to feed the world, fuel our vehicles, and slow global warming. (Los Angeles Times)

What stops his seawater-irrigated patches turning into salt pans?

July 28, 2008

No! US Army Works to Cut its Carbon "Bootprint" - WASHINGTON - What if cutting greenhouse emissions could also save the lives of soldiers in Iraq, where fuel-laden convoys make them targets? The US Army says it is happening now in a push to reduce its carbon "bootprint."

From forward areas like Iraq and Afghanistan to training ranges in the United States, the Army has been working to limit its use of fossil fuels and make its operations more environmentally sustainable.

The goal is to bring Army emissions of climate-warming carbon dioxide down by 30 percent by 2015, said Tad Davis, deputy assistant secretary for environment, safety and occupational health. (Reuters)

Fuel efficiency good -- misdirection about climate and carbon emissions very bad. The military must not be distracted from their mission by green saboteurs and their ridiculous claims of humans perturbing some mythical climate stasis.

Labour Blues: ‘Green’ Taxes Scotched (Global Warming Politics)

Homeowners living near windfarms see property values plummet - Thousands of homeowners may see the value of their properties plummet after a court ruled that living near a wind farm decreases house prices.

In a landmark case, Jane Davis was told she will get a discount on her council tax because her £170,000 home had been rendered worthless by a turbine 1,000 yards away.
Estate agents have said no one is likely to buy the Jones's house, which was worth £170,000 before the wind farm was built

The ruling is effectively an official admission that wind farms, which are accused of spoiling countryside views and producing a deafening roar, have a negative effect on house prices.

It means many other families living in the shadow of the giant turbines could see thousands wiped off the value of their homes, as the Government pushes ahead with plans to build 7,000 more wind farms over the next decade to meet ambitious green targets. (Daily Telegraph)

Meanwhile: Big rises in gas and electricity bills this year, MPs warn - British households face further significant increases in their gas and electricity bills this year, a Parliamentary report warns. (Daily Telegraph)

Now K.Rudd's fart tax is in trouble: Gauging animal emissions 'too hard' - PLANS to include agriculture in the Rudd Government's climate change regime should be abandoned because the industry's greenhouse emissions are almost impossible to measure.

One of Australia's foremost greenhouse gas measurement authorities, Hugh Saddler, told The Weekend Australian that emissions from cows and sheep -- thought to account for about 15per cent of Australia's greenhouse gases -- were too difficult to measure and impossible to avoid.

In its emissions trading green paper, released this month, the Government said it wanted to include agricultural emissions in its trading scheme by 2015, arguing it was important to spread the costs of reducing emissions across all sectors.

Dr Saddler said agricultural emissions should be left out for good. "You can't measure them accurately enough," he said. "Cows have their own genetic make-up and food preferences and the variability of emissions across a herd, or between one herd and another, would lead to a level of uncertainty too high for emission permits that people are going to pay money for." (The Australian)

Hey kids! Be a “Climate Cop” - rat on your family, friends, and classmates - Note: I don’t normally allow the discussion of things related to Nazi Germany here, including discouraging the use of the word “denier” due to it’s “Holocaust Denier” connotations. But this full page ad in the Sunday papers in Britain, touting “climate crime” and “climate cops” is just a bit over the top, and deserves some attention. It is particularly relevant since the sponsoring website has a teachers section, and we’ve just seen some sensibility from Schwarzenegger in Sacramento on this very issue. I find this method of indoctrinating school children to normal everyday living being harmful to the earth with the “climate crime” connotation as distasteful and wrong headed. I have no problems with energy conservation, in fact I encourage it. But combining such advice with a “climate cop” idea is the wrong way to get the message across. Can you imagine what sort of reaction the neighbors will have to the kids hanging this door hanger on their front door? Will the result of this now be hiding your electric dryer behind false walls so the kids and neighbors don’t see it? (Watts Up With That?)

Governor vetoes climate change curriculum - California public students will stick to reading, writing and arithmetic, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger decided as he vetoed a bill late Friday that would have required climate change be added to schools' curriculum.

The measure, sponsored by state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, also would have required future science textbooks to include climate change as a subject. (Mercury News)

Huh... more than I expect from the Left-coast's RINO-in-Chief but then, that's not really saying much.

Where is the Evidence? - Earlier this month the Royal Society of New Zealand issued a special statement designed to clear up the “controversy over climate change” and “possible confusion among the public”. The statement from the Society’s Climate Committee asserts that “The globe is warming because of increasing greenhouse gas emissions” and that “human activities” are to blame. This statement reinforces the governments’ position that in order to prevent climate disaster, legislation must be passed to force the public to make personal sacrifices and reduce their consumption of energy.

According to their website, the Royal Society is an independent, national academy of sciences, representing nearly 20,000 scientists, technologists and technicians. They administer science and technology funds worth $40 to $50 million for the government, publish science journals, offer advice to Government, and promote science and technology. The Society operates on a budget of over $5 million.

In response to the Climate Committee’s statement, a long-standing member of the Royal Society, Dr Vincent Gray, resigned. Dr Gray, a climate consultant and expert reviewer of all four of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment Reports, claimed that his resignation was in protest at the major inaccuracies contained in the Society’s climate statement. His concerns include the fact that the globe is now cooling, not warming, and that there is “no evidence whatsoever for a human contribution to the climate”. (NZCPR Weekly)

Penn & Teller: Al Gore is an EPA -- 'Egregiously Pushy A**hole' (NewsBusters)

Penn & Teller Expose Socialist Roots To Environmental Hysteria (NewsBusters)

Well duh! India Firms Lag in Climate Action - Report - NEW DELHI - India's top firms face little stakeholder pressure to combat climate change with only about 40 percent of the companies surveyed setting voluntary carbon emissions reduction goals, a report said.

A survey by KPMG consultants of 70 CEOs found their response to climate issues was driven largely by the need to comply with expected regulations, while leaving the leadership role in tackling global warming to the government.

The survey included top companies from power, automobile, petroleum, cement mining and construction sectors. (Reuters)

India rejects climate doom, pursues economic boom - India loves the UN’s climate change policies and so does India’s representative at the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Rajendra Pachauri.

Why the love-in? The Indian government’s new “National Action Plan on Climate Change,” which Pachauri helped craft, plainly explains why: The UN formally establishes that global warming is a matter of secondary importance to India, allowing the world’s largest democracy to pursue its own best interests.

As the National Action Plan unapologetically puts it, the UN’s climate change convention “recognizes that ‘economic and social development and poverty eradication are the first and overriding priorities of the developing country parties.’ Thus, developing countries are not required to divert resources from development priorities by implementing projects involving incremental costs.” (Lawrence Solomon, Financial Post)

The Carbon Curtain - What we really need from the climate modelers is an accurate 50-year projection of global politics. Will people believe the computer's dire prophecy enough to change their lifestyles? While we wait for 50 million lines of code to reveal the supposed future, consider how things look to one very knowledgeable energy analyst, Vinod K. Dar, who runs Dar & Company, a consultant to the energy industry, in Bethesda, Md. What follows is my own gloss on Dar's analysis. Everything he says, however, squares with all that I've seen and learned in the 30 years I've watched energy markets here and abroad.

A number of influential people in Russia, China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam say the planet is now entering a 30-year cooling period, the second half of a normal cycle driven by cyclical changes in the sun's output and currents in the Pacific Ocean. Their theory leaves true believers in carbon catastrophe livid.

To judge by actions, not words, the carbon-warming view hasn't come close to persuading a political majority even in nations considered far more environmentally enlightened than China and India. Europe's coal consumption is rising, not falling, and the Continent won't come close to meeting the Kyoto targets for carbon reduction. Australia is selling coal to all comers. (Peter Huber, Forbes)

Not a patio heater! Doctors: Third babies are the same as patio heaters - A pair of doctors have said that British parents should have fewer children, because kids cause carbon emissions and climate change. The two medics suggest that choosing to have a third child is the same as buying a patio heater or driving a gas-guzzling car, and that GPs should advise their patients against it. (The Register)

Germany wants more carbon emissions: German Minister Wants Tax Cuts to Heat Up Cooling Economy - Germany's economics minister wants to introduce tax breaks to put more money in consumer pockets and spur spending. The economy is cooling, experts say, but a recession is unlikely. (Der Spiegel)

Here come the green nannies - The Green Nanny State will make all your choices for you. It will choose the car you drive and how fast you drive it. It will dictate what kind of energy you buy for your home or business. It may well decide whether your business is “environmentally appropriate” and determine if it has a right to exist.

Sound like the premise of a futuristic science-fiction movie? We wish it were. Unfortunately, it is an accurate description of what has been unfolding in California and, to a lesser extent, across the country. (Eureka Reporter)

Oh boy... September 3, 2008, SECURITY AND CLIMATE CHANGE - London Conference - Preparing for the New Security Environment.

A conference on climate change and security taking place 3 September in London.

Climate Change: Preparing for the New Security Environment.

At present, responses to the security implications of climate change are embryonic and disjointed. Current understandings of the nature and timing of climate change impacts remain speculative, yet the magnitude of the potential consequences demands an urgent response. This dichotomy presents a pressing challenge for policy makers, the climate science community and security actors alike.

The RUSI climate change and security conference will provide a forum to discuss the current state of research on the linkages between climate change and security, with a special focus on responses and solutions for planners and policymakers. (Sustainabilitank)

Wonder if they really believe any of the gorebull warming crap or whether they're just after the marks' money?

M.I.T. Scientists: Warming Will Actually Reduce Number of Hurricanes - American Meteorological Society report contradicts claim tropical activity increases due to climate change. (Jeff Poor, Business & Media Institute)

Blowing Hot Air Up Our Shorts - T. Boone Pickens is being lionized for his “socially responsible” efforts to legislate national “clean” wind and solar energy mandates.

We’re “the Saudi Arabia of wind,” he argues. We need to “overcome our addiction to foreign oil,” by harnessing that wind to replace natural gas in electricity generation, and using that gas to power more cars and buses. If Congress would simply “mandate the formation of wind and solar transmission corridors, and renew the subsidies” for this renewable energy, America can achieve this transformation in ten years, he insists.

Pickens’ pitch makes good ad copy, especially in league with Senator Harry Reid’s bombast about oil, gas and coal “making us sick.” However, his policy prescriptions would impose vast new energy, economic and environmental problems. (Paul Driessen, Townhall)

CSIRO heavy: don’t trust CSIRO’s scares - Art Raiche, former Chief Research Scientist of the CSIRO, says the organisation’s fear-mongering over climate change can’t be trusted: (Andrew Bolt Blog)

Greenhouse plans went off the rails - AS a model for how not to tackle climate change, it seems hard to go past the Rudd Government's approach to transport. Rail is three to four times more energy-efficient than road, according to rail industry calculations here and overseas. (The Australian)

Oil bogyman approach won't reduce emissions - AUSTRALIAN motorists have been frightened into greenhouse submission. A shocking CSIRO report issued earlier this month warns of petrol prices of up to $8 a litre by 2018.

There are few buttons hotter than petrol prices to get public attention on the future cost and availability of transport energy.

The eye-watering projection of a 500 per cent increase in petrol prices is based on one small section of the Fuel for Thought report, which models a doomsday scenario of imagining if the exhaustion of the world's oil reserves peak oil was already upon us.

This headline-grabbing analysis by the CSIRO curiously eschews mainstream oil demand and supply information, instead relying on data from Peak Oil Netherlands Foundation, which predicts a peak in oil supply in 2010 and a subsequent 3 per cent decline in supply every year thereafter. PONL describes itself as a group of citizens concerned about the effects of peak oil. (The Australian)

Funds for Highways Plummet - An unprecedented cutback in driving is slashing the funds available to rebuild the aging highway system and expand mass-transit options, underscoring the economic impact of high gasoline prices. The resulting strain is touching off a political battle over government priorities in a new era of expensive oil. (Wall Street Journal)

Truckers to Sue L.A. Ports Over Pollution Plan - LOS ANGELES - The American Trucking Associations said it plans to file a federal law suit Monday against the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to stop new rules for truckers designed to decrease diesel fuel pollution.

The Port of Los Angeles' plan, coming into effect in October, would ban independent truckers from entering the port. The ATA argues it is an attempt to squeeze out independent motor carriers in favor of larger trucking companies. (Reuters)

Nasa is out of line on global warming - Considering that the measures recommended by the world's politicians to combat global warming will cost tens of trillions of dollars and involve very drastic changes to our way of life, it might be thought wise to check the reliability of the evidence on which they base their belief that our planet is actually getting hotter.

There are four internationally recognised sources of data on world temperatures, but the one most often cited by supporters of global warming is that run by James Hansen of Nasa's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS).

Hansen has been for 20 years the world's leading scientific advocate of global warming (and Al Gore's closest ally). But in the past year a number of expert US scientists have been conducting a public investigation, through scientific blogs, which raises large question marks over the methods used to arrive at his figures. (Christopher Booker, Daily Telegraph)

The Value Of Paleoclimate Records In Assessing Vulnerability to Drought: A New Paper Meko et al 2008 - There is a seminal new study of drought in the western United States that extends the period of assessment back to 800 A.D. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Guess it's more of that warming=cooling thing: Gloomy summer headed toward infamy: Anchorage could hit 65 degrees for fewest days on record - The coldest summer ever? You might be looking at it, weather folks say.

Right now the so-called summer of '08 is on pace to produce the fewest days ever recorded in which the temperature in Anchorage managed to reach 65 degrees.

That unhappy record was set in 1970, when we only made it to the 65-degree mark, which many Alaskans consider a nice temperature, 16 days out of 365.

This year, however -- with the summer more than half over -- there have been only seven 65-degree days so far. And that's with just a month of potential "balmy" days remaining and the forecast looking gloomy. (Anchorage Daily News)

Oh rubbish! Valuable Seagrasses Face Global Warming Threat - GENEVA - Seagrass meadows, which are vital for the survival of much marine life and a source of household materials in Europe and Africa, face a mounting threat from global warming, a report said on Friday. (Reuters)

If serious warming were occurring then warm-loving seagrass species would thrive (seagrass meadows would show a population proportion change to favor such species). How do these people think seagrasses survived previous warm periods?

Right... Sites endangered by global warming - That dream vacation – diving along the Great Barrier Reef, skiing in the Swiss Alps – could remain a dream forever if you don't get a move on.

The brilliant coral off Australia could be largely gone by 2050, says a 2007 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Ski resort operators in Europe's Alps are buying snowmaking equipment because of shorter snow seasons, says

Al Gore's documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth," has made "ecotourism" hot, ironically. (McClatchy-Tribune)

Democrats Against Drilling - Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and other liberal leaders on Capitol Hill are gripped by cold-sweat terror. If they permit a vote on offshore drilling, they know they will lose when Blue Dogs and oil-patch Democrats defect to the GOP position of increasing domestic energy production. So the last failsafe is to shut down Congress.

Majority Leader Reid has decided that deliberation is too taxing for "the world's greatest deliberative body." This week he cut off serious energy amendments to his antispeculation bill. Then Senate Appropriations baron Robert Byrd abruptly canceled a bill markup planned for today where Republicans intended to press the issue. Mr. Byrd's counterpart in the House, David Obey, is enforcing a similar lockdown. Speaker Pelosi says she won't allow even a debate before Congress's August recess begins in eight days.

She and Mr. Reid are cornered by substance. The upward pressure on oil prices is caused by rising world-wide consumption and limited growth in supplies. Yet at least 65% of America's undiscovered, recoverable oil, and 40% of its natural gas, is hostage to the Congressional drilling moratorium.

The Democratic leadership is trying to smother any awareness of their responsibility for high prices. They are also trying to quash a revolt among Democrats who realize that the country is still dependent on fossil fuels, no matter how loudly quasimystical environmentalists like Al Gore claim otherwise. (WSJ)

No Drilling, No Vote - Speaker Pelosi won't let the House debate the merits of offshore drilling. (WSJ editorial)

Has Sen. Murkowski LOST her mind? - As Planet Gore readers likely know, Congress currently prohibits the federal government to sell leases for energy production along the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). As the Congressional Research Service Office has put it, “OCS moratoria, which prohibit leasing on most federal offshore lands, have been an important issue in the debate over energy security and the potential availability of additional domestic oil and gas resources. Congress has enacted the moratoria for each of fiscal years 1982-2006 [NB: now 2008] in the annual Interior Appropriations bill.”

This prohibition expires at the end of this (and every other) fiscal year. It would have to be specifically included in the FY 2009 Interior appropriations bill to be renewed. That vehicle, however, will not pass this year for the very simple reason that the Democrats will not allow a vote on drilling, and therefore have precluded votes on the spending bill. Seriously. (Chris Horner, Planet Gore)

Call Congress Back To Vote On Drilling - When it comes to giving relief at the pump by drilling for more oil, this is truly a "do-nothing" Democratic Congress. President Bush should give 'em hell like Harry Truman did. (IBD)

Oil May Become GOP's 2008 Issue: Cost of Gas Touches a Chord With Voters - Four-dollar-a-gallon gas has done something that few Republicans thought possible just a few months ago: given them hope. (Washington Post)

Take a step back from enviro lunacy - Sometimes public opinion doesn't flow smoothly; it shifts sharply when a tipping point is reached. Case in point: gas prices. $3 a gallon gas didn't change anybody's mind about energy issues. $4 a gallon gas did. Evidently, the experience of paying more than $50 for a tankful gets people thinking we should stop worrying so much about global warming and the environmental dangers of oil wells on the outer continental shelf and in Alaska. Drill now! Nuke the caribou! (Michael Barone, Detroit News)

Green Gap: Why High Energy Prices Could Hurt the Environment - Are greenbacks finally trumping greens?

The cost of energy, especially the “cost of gas,” has zoomed to the top of voters’ economic concerns, according to the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll. Overall, energy costs are second only to general fears about the economy, just three months away from the election. Which sounds like great news for Senator Barack Obama: Democrats are still seen as the best stewards of energy policy by a wide—but shrinking—margin, the poll found. (WSJ)

Europe’s Energy Revolution: Long on Rhetoric, Short on Results - In early June, the International Energy Agency warned the world’s biggest energy consumers that their strategy to fight global warming isn’t working, and that $45 trillion in new investment through 2050 will be needed to avert a crisis. But Europe is unlikely to heed the agency’s advice. (Andrés Cala, Energy Tribune)

Rudd vows to help power industry cope with shake-up - KEVIN Rudd has promised his "electricity adjustment fund" will help power generators cope with the upheaval caused by an emissions trading regime, after new research predicted even a modest carbon price could shut down coal-fired power stations around the country. (The Australian)

UK scientists hit out at new coal station plans - In a letter to The Observer, some of Britain's leading scientists claim that government plans to build new coal-fired power stations - without technology to cut emissions - will accelerate global warming. And next Sunday's annual Climate Camp will see campaigners take action (The Observer)

Motorists 'demonised' by ministers in drive to cut pollution, says top government advisor - Labour faces being kicked out of office by angry motorists if it continues to 'unfairly demonise' the car, a top Government adviser warned today.

Families are 'rebelling' against unfair car taxes, restrictions on their freedoms, and attacks on 4X4s and luxury cars by politicians and campaigners driven by 'ideological dogma' rather than hard-facts, Richard Parry-Jones claimed.

Mr Parry-Jones was appointed by the government to look at how technology can be used to cut pollution. (Mail on Sunday)

Top EU Court Backs Citizen Rights in Air Pollution - BRUSSELS - A German environmental activist has won backing from the European Union's top court to force local authorities in the home city of BMW to tackle car pollution.

Dieter Janecek, a Green Party member who lives near Munich's central ring road, complained to the city authorities that the level of particles in the air linked to car exhaust had breached the legal limit on more than the 35 days allowed in a year.

But his request to the local authority to draw up an action plan with short-term measures such as traffic bans to curb pollution was turned down and he took his case to the European Court of Justice. (Reuters)

He has the right to hold his breath. If he gives up this right...

Oil Spills Onto Ice, Climate Among Arctic Risks - OSLO - Companies seeking oil in the Arctic will need better technology to clean up spills onto ice and could new face hazards such as rougher seas caused by climate change, experts said on Friday. (Reuters)

All true, a period of cooling could make conditions much more difficult.

Brazil’s Lula Juggles Environmental Issues - In May, investors cheered and environmentalists jeered when Brazil’s government awarded the second phase of its 6.45 gigawatt Madeira hydroelectric project in the Amazon jungle. The mega project, which includes the 3.3 GW Jirau and 3.15 GW Santo Antonio plants on the Madeira River, marks Brazil’s return to large-scale hydros after a decade-long hiatus due to environmental concerns. While detractors have argued that the environmental footprint of large-scale hydros is too large to bear, proponents say dams are needed to prevent power rationing and meet Brazil’s soaring power demand. (Randy Woods, Energy Tribune)

In Gas-Powered World, Ethanol Stirs Complaints - OKLAHOMA CITY — “Why Do You Put Alcohol in Your Tank?” demands a large sign outside one gas station here, which reassures drivers that it sells only “100% Gas.”

“No Corn in Our Gas,” advertises another station nearby.

Along the highways of this sprawling prairie city, and in other pockets of the country, a mutiny is growing against energy policies that heavily support and subsidize the blending of ethyl alcohol, or ethanol, into gasoline.

Many consumers complain that ethanol, which constitutes as much as 10 percent of the fuel they buy in most states, hurts gas mileage and chokes the engines of their boats and motorcycles.

As ethanol has spread around the country, gas station owners and wholesalers are catering to concerns about ethanol that are often exaggerated but not entirely unfounded. High gas prices seem to be helping them plant seeds of doubt in customers’ minds. (New York Times)

Bitter Harvest? - Biofuels were touted as a clean and green answer to the challenge of climate change, but now they are being blamed for soaring food prices and environmental damage, writes Harry McGee. (Irish Times)

New US Group Defends Ethanol in Food Vs Fuel Fight - CHICAGO - A new group is adding its voice to the debate on using crops to produce alternative fuels such as ethanol amid rising food prices and shortages in some countries.

The Alliance for Abundant Food and Energy in Washington D.C. was created by Archer Daniels Midland Co, DuPont Co, Deere & Co , Monsanto Co and the Renewable Fuels Association (

And I'd have thought the obvious name would be "The Association of Subsidy Farmers" or "Boondoggle Inc." maybe.

Corn Cob Bob goes to war - The venerable C.D. Howe Institute appears to be surviving the Corn Cob Bob attack. The question is whether Corn Cob Bob, a.k.a. the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association, will make it through the battle. The CRFA represents Canada’s corn ethanol industry, a subsidy-seeking group of companies that has managed to turn the global warming scare into a multi-billion dollar cash crop. Like climate campaigners everywhere who portray themselves as moral crusaders, they don’t take criticism well, to put it mildly.

In a blistering news release on Wednesday, the CRFA said that a recent C.D. Howe Institute study on corn ethanol — The Ethanol Trap, by Guelph University economist Doug Auld — contained “numerous fundamental errors in fact, inconsistent application of research methodology, and questionable assumptions, all leading to erroneous conclusions.”

That was just the news release. Attached was a letter from CRFA President Gordon Quaiattini to C.D. Howe chair Tim Hearn and CEO William Robson, asking them to “withdraw” Prof. Auld’s report and to consider publishing a CRFA-commissioned response.

That’s some request. Not only was C.D.Howe to withdraw its own commissioned and formally reviewed study on ethanol, it was to post somebody else’s dubious study that reached the opposite conclusion. Not surprisingly, the CRFA’s loopy request has been rejected. “We’ve seen nothing that would indicate there is reason to withdraw the study, nor are we going to post the CRFA version,” said Finn Poshmann, the C.D. Howe’s director of research. (Terence Corcoran, Financial Post)

These fools still exist? Greenpeace Protest Targets Syncrude Oil Sands Mine - CALGARY, Alberta - Greenpeace protesters targeted a waste-water pipe at a Syncrude Canada Ltd oil sands project on Thursday, demanding a halt to rising crude production in the region, which they say is devastating the environment. (Reuters)

US State Wages Fight Against Toxic Chemicals - AUGUSTA, Maine - Hannah Pingree was so alarmed when she learned she had dangerously high levels of mercury, arsenic and other toxic chemicals in her body that she took her case to the Maine state legislature and challenged chemical makers. (Reuters)

Uh-huh... there's a world of difference between what chemophobes claim are "dangerously high levels" (usually synonymous with "detectable") and levels which are genuinely hazardous. They conveniently forget that the dose makes the poison while lower doses may be beneficial, benign or even necessary (extreme case e.g.: too much water can kill you but you cannot live without it).

Overweight elderly Americans contribute to financial burdens of the US health care system - Being overweight or obese is not only a personal issue that affects one's health but is also a public health issue that impacts other people in society. A new study in the journal Health Services Research reveals that the extra Medicare cost associated with overweight elderly people could place a significant financial burden on tax payers, costing up to hundreds of billions of dollars across the entire current Medicare population. (Wiley)

And so do sick people (especially if they're still alive)!

'Solving' another pretend problem: California Bars Restaurant Use of Trans Fats - LOS ANGELES — California, a national trendsetter in all matters edible, became the first state to ban trans fats in restaurants when Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill Friday to phase out their use.

Under the new law, trans fats, long linked to health problems, must be excised from restaurant products beginning in 2010, and from all retail baked goods by 2011. Packaged foods will be exempt.

New York City adopted a similar ban in 2006 — it became fully effective on July 1 — and Philadelphia, Stamford, Conn., and Montgomery County, Md., have done so as well.

But having the requirement imposed on the most populous state’s 88,000 restaurants, as well as its bakeries and other food purveyors, is a major gain for the movement against trans fats. That movement has been led by scientists, doctors and consumer advocates who trace the largely synthetic fat to a variety of ailments, principally heart disease. (New York Times)

Turning down the child care alarm - At every turn, new parents are being given another worry. This month, news has been reporting that babies cared for by people other than their parents gain more weight. A new study was reported as finding babies placed in day care, even in the care of a relative, were more likely to be fed improperly. (Junkfood Science)

Little kids are not grenades - Making claims that scream more hysterically of an impending cataclysm of dead bodies still won’t change the evidence. Nor will aiming another scare strike at children. Now, we’re all supposedly under threat of a ticking cancer time bomb. (Junkfood Science)

The ultimate surveillance - The technology is here, but how far will public health and safety monitoring go? As part of a graduate project at the Design Products Department of the Royal College of Art in London, graduate engineer Benjamin Males has created a surveillance device called the Static Obesity Logging device. It is a concealed camera with an integrated computer, and analog inputs and outputs, that can remotely calculate BMI (body mass index) of people who walk by and publish the data via wired and wireless networks. (Junkfood Science)

Gene scientists lift veil on devastating plant parasite - An international team of 27 laboratories said on Sunday they had laid bare the genetic code of a tiny parasite responsible for billions of dollars in crop losses each year.

The worm, known as the root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne incognita), infests plant roots leaving them gnarled.

More than 3,000 crop types are affected, especially coffee, cotton, tomatoes, melons and cucumbers. (AFP)

Cutting the carbon hoofprint - New research from Cornell University in the United States shows that cows treated with recombinant Bovine Somatotropin make more milk on fewer resources - the net result is those cows reduce their environmental impact.

The study was published in a recent issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Researchers note that making milk uses a lot of land, energy and feed.

However, rBST can reduce the carbon hoofprint by easing energy, land and nutritional inputs necessary to sustain milk production at levels to meet market demand.

The research showed that giving rBST to one million cows would enable the same amount of milk to be produced 157,000 fewer cows.

The nutrient savings would be 491,000 tonnes of corn, 158,000t of soybeans, and total feedstuffs would be reduced by 2.3mt.

And producers could reduce cropland use by 480,000 acres and cut soil erosion by 2.3mt annually.

Those are big numbers from a single technology available to dairy farmers for the past 15 years. (The Land)

July 25, 2008

Is T. Boone Pickens 'Swiftboating' America? - Liberals have done a U-turn on conservative billionaire oilman T. Boone Pickens. Formerly reviled for funding the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" campaign against Sen. John Kerry, he's now adored by the Left — unfortunately, for trying to gaslight the rest of us on energy policy. (Steven Milloy,

SULLUM: Second Amendment sabotage - Last month the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the District of Columbia had violated the Second Amendment by making armed self-defense in the home impractical and banning the most popular weapons used for that purpose. Last week the D.C. Council responded by unanimously approving a law that makes armed self-defense in the home impractical and bans the most popular weapons used for that purpose.

D.C.'s political leaders know they are inviting another Second Amendment lawsuit, but they are determined to defy the Supreme Court and the Constitution for as long as possible.

The new law "clarifies that no carry license is required inside the home" to move a gun from one room to another. It also "clarifies" the District's firearm storage requirements, saying a gun may be unlocked and loaded "while it is being used to protect against a reasonably perceived threat of immediate harm to a person" in the home.

Much hinges on what counts as a "reasonably perceived threat." If you're awakened in the middle of the night by a crash, may you carry a gun with you as you investigate? Evidently not. The Washington Post reports that D.C.'s acting attorney general, Peter Nickles, "said residents could neither keep their guns loaded in anticipation of a problem nor search for an intruder on their property." According to Mr. Nickles, if you see an armed criminal charging your home, or in the event of "an actual threat by somebody you believe is out to hurt you," you're allowed to get your gun, unlock it and load it. (Washington Times)

Sheesh! Limit families to two children 'to combat climate change' - GPs should tell parents not to have more than two children to help in the battle against climate change, according to doctors.

The world's population increases by 1.5m each week and babies born in the UK will use more greenhouse gases during their lifetime than those born in the developing world.

Two doctors, writing in the British Medical Journal, suggest that doctors should talk to their patients about climate change and encourage them to think about the consequences of having a big family.

Investing in contraception would help in the fight against climate change, they argue. (Daily Telegraph)

Evidence of variability of atmospheric CO2 concentration during the 20th century
Geo-Ecological Seminar University of Bayreuth, 17th July 2008 (see here)
Ernst-Georg Beck, Dipl. Biol

Summary of the presentation

In 1958 the modern NDIR spectroscopic method was introduced to measure CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere [Beck 2007]. In the preceding period, these measurements were taken with the old wet chemical method. From this period, starting from 1857, more than 90,000 reliable CO2 measurements are available, with an accuracy within ± 3 %. They had been taken near ground level, sea surface and as high as the stratosphere, mostly in the northern hemisphere. Comparison of these measurements on the basis of old wet chemical methods with the new physical method (NDIR) on sea and land reveals a systematic analysis difference of about minus 10 ppm.

Wet chemical analyses indicate three atmospheric CO2 maxima in the northern hemisphere up to approx. 400 ppm over land and sea since about 1812. The measured atmospheric CO2 concentrations since 1920 –1950 prove to be strongly correlated (more than 80 %) with the arctic sea surface temperature (SST).

A detailed analysis of the Atlantic Ocean water during the arctic warming since 1918 – 1939 by Wattenberg (southern Atlantic ocean) and Buch (northern Atlantic ocean) indicates a very similar state of the Atlantic Ocean (pH, salinity, CO2 in water and air over sea etc.) These data show the characteristics of the warm ocean currents (part of global conveyor belt) at that time, indicating a strong CO2 degassing from the Atlantic Sea, especially in the area of Greenland/Iceland and Spitsbergen. More than 360 ppm had been measured over the sea surface.

In 2004 Polyakov published evidence for a multi-decadal oscillation of the ocean currents in the arctic circle, showing a warm phase (strong arctic warming during 1918 –1940 with high temperatures in the Iceland/Spitsbergen area) similar to the current situation, and a cold phase (around 1900 and 1960). Today the Iceland/Spitsbergen area is known for a strong absorption of CO2.

This multi-decadal heating of the oceanic CO2 absorption area and larger parts of the Northern Atlantic Ocean was followed by an increase of the atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration to approx. 400 ppm during the 30s and approx. 390 ppm today. The abundance of plankton (13C) and other biota supports this view.

Conclusion: Atmospheric CO2 concentration varies with climate, the sea is the dominant CO2 store, releasing the gas depending on multi-decadal changes of temperature. | 180 Years of atmospheric CO2 Gas Analysis by Chemical Methods - Support

The dog that barked (Number Watch)

Might be one way to get a response: Dr. James Hansen of GISS is a Liar and a Fraud - Dr. Hansen purposely and with malice aforethought manipulates actual temperature observations in order to perpetuate a global warming hoax. If I’m wrong, he can sue me. But he won’t, because he’s a fraud. (Bill Hennessy)

Bad luck, not global warming to blame - It’s been odd, destructive and deadly, but climate experts say you can’t blame the brutal weather that has slammed New England on your neighbor’s SUV. (Boston Herald)

Toronto rainfall breaks record - The rainiest June and July in city records has made Toronto the country's soggiest city this summer, and has put 2008 on the fast track to be the city's wettest year ever. (Toronto Star)

Dry last year, wet this year, average overall then...

Climate Assessment Oligarchy - The IPCC

An oligarchy is a “form of government in which all power is vested in a few persons or in a dominant class or clique; government by the few.”

This definition certainly fits with the IPCC, as illustrated by the closed meeting in which Gerald Meehl, Jonathan Overpeck, Susan Solomon, Thomas Stocker, and Ron Stouffer are organizing in Hawaii in March 2009. This meeting is reported at Joint IPCC-WCRP-IGBP Workshop: New Science Directions and Activities Relevant to the IPCC AR5 [Tuesday, March 03, 2009 - Friday, March 06, 2009 at the University of Hawaii International Pacific Research Center Honolulu , Hawaii].

While the meeting is to be mostly self-funded [which means federal contracts and grants and other such sources will be used to pay for the trip], it raises the issue as to why such a remote location is chosen. Presumably the particpants should be concerned about the emission of CO2 into the atmosphere from the jet aircraft that will transport them to Hawaii.

The Workshop is also open to only the IPCC Working Group 1 Lead Authors [LAs] and Contributing Lead Authors [CLAs] from all four assessments.  While the goals of the Workshop are appropriate scientific topics, the closed character of the Workshop and its location perpetuates the exclusiveness of the IPCC process.  

This small community of climate scientists is controlling the agenda with respect to the assessment of climate change. This is an oligarchy. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Argentine/NASA satellite will measure oceans’ salt levels - Argentine and NASA scientists hope a new satellite will help them better track global climate change by measuring salt levels on the surface of the world's oceans.

Researchers from around the world on Thursday approved the final design of the satellite, which is slated to launch in 2010 and expected to provide new clues to help better predict shifts in climate.

An ocean's salt level yields key information about the Earth's temperatures and ocean currents that may help scientists understand the effects of global warming.

Experts currently measure salt levels manually, gathering samples at sea. However, the labor-intensive method means 24% of the ocean's surface has never been tested for salinity levels.

The new SAC-D Aquarius satellite will measure salinity levels around the globe, once a month for three years. (Mercopress)

India challenges global warming fears - India has issued a report challenging global warming fears. This is dramatic. The Indian Prime Minister's Council on Climate Change said that India would rather save its people from poverty than global warming, and would not cut growth in order to cut gases.

Referring to claimed changes in climate attributed to human activity, the report declares: "No firm link between the documented charges described below and warming due to an anthropogenic climate change has yet been established."

The report goes on to state: "It is obvious that India needs to substantially increase its per capita energy consumption to provide a minimally acceptable level of wellbeing to its people . . . India is determined that its per capita greenhouse-gas emissions will at no point exceed those of developed countries."

The Australian Herald noted that this declaration "means India won't stop its per capita emissions (now at 1,02 t) from growing until they match those of countries such as the US (now at 20 t)."

This Indian report was music to my ears. I have constantly said that developing countries cannot afford to let their school children do homework at night by candle light rather than by electric light, in an effort to save on electricity production, on the basis of the flimsy evidence presented in favour of man-induced climate change. (Dr Kelvin Kemm, Engineering News)

It'll be even worse! Federal climate change report warns of health problems - OTTAWA — A major report on climate change and health forecasts a higher risk of injuries, illnesses and stress-related disorders brought on by more frequent bouts of extreme weather.

A not-yet-released Health Canada report urges the federal government to brace Canadians for health problems arising from more droughts, violent storms, heat waves and cold snaps. (Canadian Press)

Study: Typhoons bury tons of carbon in the oceans - A single typhoon in Taiwan buries as much carbon in the ocean -- in the form of sediment -- as all the other rains in that country all year long combined. That's the finding of an Ohio State University study published in a recent issue of the journal Geology.

National Disgraces - About twenty years ago, I took an eminent American biologist who was visiting the UK to see Charles Darwin’s house, Down House, at Downe in the London Borough of Bromley, Kent. This was where the great man had written On the Origin of Species (1859), observed his earthworms and orchids, trod his famous ‘Sandwalk’, and changed the way we all think. Sadly, the visit was a deeply embarrassing experience; the house was in poor repair, the exhibitions were ancient and execrable, and some of the information dated and misleading. She was a very polite lady, but, as I was driving her back through the leafy lanes of Kent, she gently suggested that this really was a national disgrace for one of the most influential scientists of all time. “How can your country leave it like that?” she asked, looking mystified. “In nearly every other country in the world, it would be regarded, and looked after, as a shrine.” In my rather dispirited reply, I muttered something about English ‘amateurism’ and the deeply anti-intellectual culture which pervades so much of our government and society, in which people are seen as “too clever by half” and as “so sharp that they will cut themselves”. She looked at me with kindly pity. (Global Warming Politics)

The Grand Exaggerator - What is it with Al Gore? Why is he compelled to exaggerate climate change (excuse me, “the climate crisis”), and then to propose impossible policy responses? It’s like he’s inventing the Internet all over again! (Patrick J. Michaels, Planet Gore)

The Great Socialist writes again: Climate change: feed it and weep or lead and reap - Australia will reap important benefits from the carbon pollution reduction scheme. Properly, the Government has left itself considerable flexibility on several points, which will depend heavily on what other countries do. But the value of the scheme lies not in the details but in three more basic considerations. Australia can now lead economically, technologically and diplomatically in the global effort that lies ahead. (Sydney Morning Herald)

The trouble with Sachs is he never saw a wealth transfer scheme he didn't like and he'll latch on to any excuse to perpetrate one with limpet-like tenacity.

NYT: Expert Says Arctic Ocean Will Soon Be an Open Sea - “Catastrophic Shifts in Climate Feared if Change Occurs”

In case you missed it, this article in the New York Times illustrates what some scientists believe is a very serious issue, and they are speaking out on it. (Watts Up With That?)

‘The only certain thing is that the science is uncertain’ - Lord Lawson on the difficulty of publishing a contrarian book on global warming and why huge cuts in CO2 emissions would be ‘madness’. (Rob Lyons, sp!ked)

The Moral Case Against Global Warming Policies - How odd that someone would make a moral case against global warming. The trend is to promote it as a just cause. Global warming is presented as a problem that we should be doing all we can to fix or life as we know it will be no more. The so called "science" that supporters of global warming use to justify their position is anything but settled. New evidence is constantly being discovered that puts bigger and bigger holes in global warming theories--not laws, theories. The most ridiculous of these theories being that global warming--if it is indeed happening--is caused by human beings.

The objective here is not to go over the science that casts an overwhelming shadow of doubt on the accuracy of global warming theories but, it would be a waste not to share it. Not enough people are aware of this information as it is. (Tommy Leung Ezine Articles)

Retired engineer disputes global warming threat - SAINT JOHN - Global warming skeptic and retired chemical engineer Ian McQueen has spent the past 20 months trying to examine the veracity of the threat of global warming.

After sifting through reports for hours each day, he attempted to change the public's minds in a lecture at the Saint John Free Public Library Wednesday night.

"Carbon dioxide is not the bogeyman - there are other causes that are much more likely to be causing climate change, to the extent that it has changed," McQueen told a small audience.

McQueen was invited to speak by the Canadian Nuclear Society after letters and opinion pieces featuring his "moderately controversial opinions" ran in the Telegraph-Journal, society representative Mark McIntyre said. (Telegraph-Journal)

We're Number One! (And It's Nothing to Cheer About.) - Detroit — Michigan today is Number One among major manufacturing states in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. . . but it is an honor that state residents are hardly smiling about. Earlier this year, Bill Clinton concluded that “we just have to slow down our economy and cut back our greenhouse-gas emissions because we have to save the planet for our grandchildren.”

Michigan has been living Clinton’s prescription, and the rest of America may not like the model. (Henry Payne, Planet Gore)

Immigration must be cut to fight climate change - uni study - IMMIGRATION must be slashed if Australia has any chance of seriously tackling climate change, says a Monash University study. (Herald Sun)

K.Rudd will be so conflicted. Two of his favorite things are gorebull warming and immigration...

Brendan Nelson gets support on climate change policy - A COHORT of Queensland climate change sceptics will be Liberal leader Brendan Nelson's strongest allies next week. (Courier-Mail)

The Opposite of Progress

"I have come to the conclusion, that one useless man is a Disgrace, two are a law firm and three or more are called a Congress."--John Adams, "1776"
"Just 12% of voters think Congress has passed any legislation to improve life in this country over the past six months. . . . The majority of voters (62%) say Congress has not passed any legislation to improve life in America."--Rasmussen Reports, 2008

Why is Congress so unpopular? Because it is often intent upon doing things that will make life in America much worse.

The most important example is continued blockage of access to America's energy resources. No new nuclear power plants have been permitted in decades; no new oil refineries; no additional drilling off the coast of Alaska, California, Florida or parts of the Gulf of Mexico where there are huge amounts of useable energy; and continuing opposition to building liquefied natural gas facilities.

Added to these energy reduction policies is another proposed "windfall profits tax" on oil companies. Sponsored by Sen. Harry Reid (D., Nev.) and 22 other Democrats, it proposes a levy of 25% on whatever Congress thinks are excess profits. Remember that back in 1980 Jimmy Carter's windfall profits tax reduced domestic oil production between 3% and 6% and increased imported foreign oil by about 10%. the new plan would have similar consequences.

None of this congressional thinking will improve life in America, so Americans are beginning to think differently about energy policy. Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) says relenting on the offshore drilling ban would amount to capitulation, but a recent Pew Foundation poll shows that 47% of people want to increase exploration, mining and drilling and have more power plants, compared with 35% last February. Those who want more conservation and regulation have dropped to 44% from 55%. (PETE DU PONT, WSJ)

Senate GOP issues ultimatum to expand oil drilling - Senate Republicans have threatened to block nearly all other bills pending before the August recess if Democrats refuse to vote with them on expanding offshore drilling.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said bills that do not pertain to energy can wait until after the August recess, with gas prices now surpassing $4 per gallon. (The Hill)

Power plants in danger from emission tradings scheme - FOUR out of five power stations in Victoria's Latrobe Valley, both coal-fired power stations in South Australia and several generators in NSW and Queensland could close down under an emissions trading regime designed to meet even a modest greenhouse reduction target.

New modelling for the electricity industry finds that Australia could achieve cuts of 10 or 20 per cent in its greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 compared with 2000 levels - but only after a massive upheaval in the energy sector.

Even the lower target of a 10 per cent cut would push the price of carbon emissions to levels that would close down 15 per cent of the nation's electricity generating capacity on the east coast and require $33billion in new investment in replacement clean energy generation, such as wind, solar, combined cycle gas turbine and geothermal power. (The Australian)

Thirteen million drivers to pay higher road taxes - Thirteen million drivers will pay higher road taxes from next year, new official figures show (Daily Telegraph)

Gas from coal to fuel methanol plant in extreme south Chile - Canada’s Methanex, the world’s main producer of methanol, is planning to convert coal into natural gas to supply its huge complex in the extreme south of Chile which has been working below capacity precisely because of insufficient gas, said the corporation’s CEO Bruce Aitken.

Methanex has been involved in several projects to obtain Chilean natural gas for its plant next to Punta Arenas, Magallanes Region, since the provision of fuel from Argentina was severely reduced following the Kirchners’ decision to privilege domestic consumption in spite of international supply contracts.

Punta Arenas has abundant resources of coal but since Methanex needs gas, the Canadian company has decided to build a boiler which should help to convert it to the needed fuel, sadi Aitken. (Mercopress)

Cow power could generate electricity for millions - Converting livestock manure into a domestic renewable fuel source could generate enough electricity to meet up to three per cent of North America's entire consumption needs and lead to a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), according to US research published today, Thursday, 24 July, in the Institute of Physics' Environmental Research Letters.

Baby Bottle Baird: Canada's Environment Minister Panders to Chemical Fears that Europe says are without foundation: Corcoran - Canada's Environment Minister, John Baird, basking in popular chemophobia, appears set to go after the family vote in his home riding by stoking the baby-bottle scare. Mr. Baird's willingness to pander to fabricated fears shows up in an ad he placed in a local newspaper in his Ottawa West-Nepean riding. How low will a politician go? Read on to find out.

Under a picture of a beautiful blue-eyed baby sucking on a bottle, Mr. Baird invites voters to hear the minister explain why "Canada is the first nation in the world to take action on BPA." At the local Bayshore shopping centre, near the Bay store, Mr. Baird asks voters to come and "learn more about Bisphenol A (BPA) and the action our government is taking to protect you and your family." (Terence Corcoran, Financial Post)

Caring for the sick? - For years, efforts have been underway to create a federal Office of the National Nurse. A designated National Nurse would be an opportunity to focus attention on pressing issues that have confronted the nursing profession for decades, such as the critical and growing nursing shortage and the need to improve education and training standards — issues that directly impact the quality of care received by every American and affect the future of healthcare. But, surprisingly, that’s not the focus for this position. (Junkfood Science)

Oh... Warning: Summer Playgrounds Hot, May Need Gov’t Intervention - Breaking ABC news: things get hot in the sun. "Good Morning America's" Elisabeth Leamy reported on July 24 that playground equipment gets so hot in the sun, it could harm your children. (NewsBusters)

<chuckle> Soy-based foods may lower sperm count: study - CHICAGO - Eating a half serving a day of soy-based foods could be enough to significantly lower a man's sperm count, U.S. researchers said on Wednesday.

The study is the largest in humans to look at the relationship between semen quality and a plant form of the female sex hormone estrogen known as phytoestrogen, which is plentiful in soy-rich foods.

"What we found was men that consume the highest amounts of soy foods in this study had a lower sperm concentration compared to those who did not consume soy foods," said Dr. Jorge Chavarro of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, whose study appears in the journal Human Reproduction.

"It was a relatively large difference," Chavarro said in a telephone interview. (Reuters)

So, the greenie ads about fellows being only half the men their fathers were had some small basis in truth -- just the wrong cause?

No justification for denying obese patients knee replacements - There is no justification for denying obese patients knee replacement surgery: They benefit almost as much as anyone else from the procedure, concludes a small study published ahead of print in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.

Bailing Out Kelo - Of all the unintended consequences of the housing bill that passed the House on Wednesday, the most ironic and far-reaching may be this: whatever security marginal homeowners have from foreclosures, their homes will be far less safe from being taken by bureaucrats through eminent domain.

The bill that emerged from the negotiations between House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank and Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson took the specific language protecting property rights from the housing bill that most recently passed the Senate and rendered those words almost meaningless.

Now, the billions of dollars in new grants the bill provides for "the production, preservation and rehabilitation" of housing units could stimulate a bonanza of state and local property confiscation of the type green-lighted in the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision Kelo v. New London. (John Berlau, American Spectator)

Risky Business - With Fannie and Freddie, is the government mistaking a ‘first-generation’ crisis for a ‘second-generation’ crisis?

Over the past few weeks, the global financial crisis has entered a new, more dangerous phase. Congress seems likely to act on Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson’s request for a blank check to rescue the troubled government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. As a result, it also seems likely that significant government funds will be at risk. (Vincent R. Reinhart, The American)

Expert warns wheat residue too valuable to lose - Times are good for wheat farmers, but they should resist the urge to harvest their crop residue and sell it for ethanol production, a federal researcher says. (AP)

July 24, 2008

Yes! UK Environment Minister Attends Climate Change Summit in Sydney in the Morning -- and Is Back by Lunchtime - LONDON and SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - The UK Minister of State for the Environment, the Hon Phil Woolas MP, experienced time travel today as he delivered his keynote speech at the 2nd Annual Climate Change Summit in Sydney, Australia without leaving London. Appearing live in Sydney using telepresence technology, Mr. Woolas saved an estimated 60 hours of travel time and 6.2 tons of CO2 emissions on his air flight alone. (Marketwire)

We couldn't care less about alleged "carbon savings" but we thoroughly approve of the cost-saving example. In fact we think every climate conference and confab should be so attended by every attendee. Not only will this cut costs but it will virtually (sorry!) eliminate the perpetual holiday junketing to exotic locations of the rapidly expanding plethora of publicly-funded professional climate conference attendees. would like to propose an immediate ban on the physical attendance of these climate junkfests junkets.

Telepresence or no presence!

The climate-change debate heats up - Maybe you've noticed this, too. The less sure people are of their views, the more inclined they are to name-call, yell and bully. I've noticed this when it comes to religion and politics and life in general, but I've had trouble getting used to it when it comes to science. (David Reinhard, The Oregonian)

On refereeing - I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. --Voltaire (attributed)

That’s what we used to call it – refereeing. The term “peer review” seemed to spring up and take over at about the same time as the rise of political correctness. It was a burden that most senior academics and some industrial engineers and scientists were expected to bear as part of their duty to their profession, and an onerous one it was too. It took up many hours of one’s week, with no recognition and certainly no payment. Many of us would now have a more comfortable retirement if we had devoted the time to fee earning. (Number Watch)

With the recent actions of learned societies this appears inevitable: Historian predicts the end of 'science superpowers' - Is the sun beginning to set on America's scientific dominance? Much like the scientific superpowers of France, Germany and Britain in centuries' past, the United States has a diminishing lead over other nations in financial investment and scholarly research output in science and engineering, say a group of historians and sociologists led by University of Wisconsin-Madison emeritus history professor J. Rogers Hollingsworth.

The Swindle Ruling, British Culture, and Freedom of Expression - If you are paying attention to the latest dust up over climate change then you know that a judgment has been rendered (PDF) by the relevant British authority (OFCOM) on complaints about the airing of a controversial documentary by UK Channel 4 challenging consensus climate science and politics, titled The Great Global Warming Swindle.

The decision has led to a wide range of reactions and commentary (e.g., NYT's Andy Revkin, Climate Audit's Steve McIntyre, former IPCC chairman Bob Watson, and many, many others). Here I'd like to address several points that have nothing to do with the substance of the complaint or UK laws governing the public media, but rather the broader issues raised by the controversy for the role of scientists in seeking to limit freedom of expression. (Pielke Jr., R., Prometheus)

The Carl Wunsch Complaint (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

Ofcom: The IPCC Complaint (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

Climate Re-Education Program - A reader sent me a heads-up to an article in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society ($, abstract here) titled "Climate Change Education and the Ecological Footprint". The authors express concern that non-science students don't sufficiently understand global warming and its causes, and want to initiate a re-education program in schools to get people thinking the "right" way.

So, do climate scientists want to focus on better educating kids in details of the carbon cycle? In the complexities in sorting out causes of warming between natural and man-made effects? In difficulties with climate modeling? In the huge role that feedback plays in climate forecasts?

Actually, no. Interestingly, the curriculum advocated in the Journal of American Meteorology has very little to do with meteorology or climate science. What they are advocating is a social engineering course structured around the concept of "ecological footprint." The course, as far as I can tell, has more in common with this online kids game where kids find out what age they should be allowed to live to based on their ecological footprint.

Like the Planet Slayer game above, the approach seems to be built around a quiz (kind of slow and tedious to get through). Like Planet Slayer, most of the questions are lifestyle questions - do you eat meat, do you buy food from more than 200 miles away, how big is your house, do you fly a lot, etc. If you answer that yes, you have a good diet and a nice house and travel a bit and own a car, then you are indeed destroying the planet.

I could go nuts on a rant about propoganda in government monopoly schools, but I want to make a different point [feel free to insert rant of choice here]. The amazing thing to me is that none of this has the first thing to do with meteoroogy or climate science. If there were any science at all in this ecological footprint stuff, it would have to be economics. What does meteorology have to say about the carrying capacity of the earth? Zero. What does climate science have to say about the balance between the benefits of air travel and the cost of the incremental warming that might result from that air travel? Zero. (Climate Skeptic)

Global Warming's Fatal Flaw? - I believe that human nature will finally kill off the global warming hoax, delivering a coup de grace to the damage already wrought on the hoaxers schemes by the economy. Let me explain my theory.

After writing last Friday's Weekly Round-Up, I realized that I need to be increasingly selective of what links to include because there is a great deal more information available than there used to be. While the proponents of AGW decry naysayers as 'deniers', there seems to be a lot more skepticism than there used to be.

I think I`ve figured out why - it`s about human nature. (The Daily Bayonet)

WSI Increases 2008 Atlantic Hurricane Forecast - NEW YORK - WSI Corp increased its forecast for the number of named storms and hurricanes for the 2008 hurricane season due to warming in the Atlantic basin, the private forecaster said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Oh get real! Coral grief - Jacques Cousteau was a pioneer in the study of marine biology, but new research shows the ocean life he explored could be dead within a few years (Tim Radford, The Guardian)

Cousteau was a misanthropic maniac: In order to stabilize world population, we must eliminate 350,000 people per day. It is a horrible thing to say, but it's just as bad not to say it -- Oceanographer Jacques Cousteau

Radford even slips in another misanthropic lunatic in the form of Rachel Carson, arguably cause of the world's worst ever crimes against humanity, crippling third world health care and agronomy with her false accusations and lyrical nonsense.

Moreover, Radford, sometimes the sanest of The Guardian's stable of green twitterers, falls completely for the carbon nonsense spouted by "poor relation" researchers hoping to pick up at least some spillage from the pots of money thrown at gorebull warming and "carbon constraint". "Marine biologists" (in quotes here because the world has a dreadful oversupply of people with relatively meaningless qualifications largely because the James Cook University in Queensland discovered they could make a lot of money cranking out fee-paying marine biologists from an endless pool of well-heeled youngsters looking to get a degree swanning around tropical waters in a totally safe host country -- to the point that the standing joke in Townsville is: "What do you say to a marine biologist?" with the obligatory response: "Big Mac and fries, please") "Marine biologists" should know, but apparently do not, that corals evolved during periods of the Earth's history when temperatures were significantly higher than today's and when atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were more than 10 times higher, so they are most assuredly not doomed by the trivial changes currently anticipated.

Finally, everyone should remember that a scant few thousand years ago today's shallow water corals allegedly so at risk were dead limestone outcrops, awaiting global warming and the melting of the ice sheets of the last great glaciation to raise sea levels again and recolonization by polyps spawned from areas now drowned, dark and devoid of living surface-type corals. These are adaptable critters occupying whatever niche happens to suit them over the last few hundred million years, over massive ranges and at varying altitudes depending on whatever the climate and sea levels did.

Guffaw! Science critical to climate change action - A leading soil scientist is urging governments to listen to the experts on climate change, and act now.

Dr Ian Porter is an advisor on the Montreal Protocol - the panel that has successfully tackled the hole in the ozone layer.

Dr Porter says scientific advice has been crucial to healing the ozone, and in beginning the work on climate change.

"Now under the Montreal Protocol, the HCFCs are being regulated for phase out and that work has done six times more than the first commitment period of Kyoto will do," he says.

"So there's been a real benefit of the Montreal Protocol, not just for ozone depletion, but also for climate change." (Australian Broadcasting Corp.)

Here's some sad news for you, Ian: the Montreal Protocol is a complete and utter failure judged by its advertised purpose. The only reason this is not a disaster is that the alleged crisis never existed to begin with. The so-called "hole" (more correctly the Antarctic Ozone Anomaly) is as variable now as when first observed more than 50 years ago and The Protocol has merely restricted use of a particularly handy gas, made a few people criminals and established a black market in place of the previous legitimate one. What it could never do is "fix" a problem which never existed. Neither can any amount of "carbon constraint" "fix" non-existent catastrophic enhanced greenhouse, otherwise known as gorebull warming.

The Kyoto farce in action: French Firm Cashes In Under U.N. Warming Program - ONSAN, South Korea -- A French chemical maker is reaping a potential billion-dollar windfall under a United Nations program intended to spur climate-friendly investment in the developing world, highlighting the challenges of using market forces to tackle global warming.

The company, Rhodia SA, manufactures hundreds of tons a day of adipic acid, an ingredient in nylon, at its factory here. But the real money is in what it doesn't make.

The payday, which could amount to more than $1 billion over seven years, comes from destroying nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, an unwanted byproduct and potent greenhouse gas. It's Rhodia's single most profitable business world-wide. Last year, destroying nitrous oxide here and at a similar plant in Brazil generated €189 million ($300.5 million) in sales of pollution "credits." (Wall Street Journal)

Corporate America: We Want Climate Action, Just Not Sure How - Big U.S. companies obviously want a seat at the table when it’s time to draw up America’s plan to fight climate change. A year after issuing its “Call for Action,” the U.S. Climate Action Partnership—a group of 30-odd companies like Alcoa, GE, GM, Ford, and several environmental groups—released today the list of nine principles it wants policymakers to keep in mind when they’re hammering out climate deals. But when it comes to the really tricky stuff, USCAP—like U.S. politicians so far—punted.

The main principles call for global involvement in any climate plan, and lots of carrots for developing countries. But the thorniest issue of all is left for later. That is—when countries move at different speeds to tackle climate change, it creates an uneven playing field for plenty of industries. Dirty industries penalized by restrictive legislation can move where laws are lax, killing jobs while providing no benefit to the environment. (Keith Johnson, WSJ)

Scientists question climate change consensus: The UN’s view that man-made CO2 is causing warming is under attack, says Peter Glover

Amid anger from its backbenchers, the Labour Government appears set on a course of levying new road tax levels for 'gas-guzzling cars'. At the same time a group of MPs are urging Gordon Brown to go ahead with a system of personal 'carbon credits' - a tax by any other name - as an effective way of forcing CO2 cuts.

But are these controversial new initiatives - and the ambitious EU-imposed carbon targets they are designed to meet - based on a lie?

Like so many other expensive green initiatives mooted here and elsewhere in the West, they are firmly rooted in the single premise that man-made CO2 emissions are scientifically proven to be the root of all climate evil.

And the most acceptable source of that scientific proof is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Run by the UN, its

last report in February 2007 - released 10 months before it shared the Nobel Prize with Al Gore - made it quite clear that there was a consensus of 2,500 scientists across the globe who believe that mankind was responsible for greenhouse gas concentrations which in turn were very likely responsible for an increase in global temperatures.

The trouble is that alleged scientific consensus has never been in more disarray. Not that we in Britain would know much about the increasing dissent in the international science community on climate change, because the British mainstream news media declines to report it. (First Post)

Even when getting it right the English media can't get it right -- Paul Reiter threatened legal action to have his name removed from IPCC documents because they gave the impression he had signed off on blatantly false statements but there's no evidence Pat Michaels has ever done so.

Roy Spencer in the U.S. Senate

(See also Anthony Watts' comments.)

I think his testimony was extremely good. You can see the anonymous faces around who don't want to hear any rational things about the climate, its sensitivity, the natural effects, and the sensible strategies to organize the scientific research in order to find the correct and important insights about the climate. (The Reference Frame)

Another moonbat rant: Don't be fooled by the climate change bill. Carbon trading torpedoes it - The rigged statistics and exported emissions will render worthless the apparently radical targets Labour is now setting (George Monbiot, The Guardian)

How's those book sales going, George? I see you having a great deal to say on ever-more extreme positions -- sales fallen off a bit, eh?

Nutty story of the day #3 - TV ads cause global warming - I suppose if the purpose of this is to say that we need less television advertising, I can go along with that. This is probably good news for the Ty-D-Bowl Man, who has been threatened by catastrophically rising and falling water levels all his career. - Anthony (Watts Up With That?)

Climate Change in Kansas City: A Guest Weblog By Dr. Lynwood Yarbrough - Let me introduce myself. I received a Ph.D. degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (Purdue University) and did postgraduate training in Biophysics (The Albert Einstein College of Medicine). I ran a research lab at a major university medical center for 32 years and recently retired. I served as a research consultant for the National Institutes of Health for 8 of those years and am presently on the editorial board of a journal in my field.

Several years ago I began reading the literature on climate change that was appearing in Science, Nature, and other peer-reviewed journals. I did so because I was concerned at the alarmism I was seeing in the media regarding “global warming” and the dire predictions of some in the scientific literature. I consider myself a scientific skeptic and want to be convinced by the data before I accept something as “true” (see Freeman Dyson at on skepticism in science).

As a biologist, I am aware of a number of cases in which science has been led in directions not based on hard evidence. Examples include Malthus and the Malthusian Theory, Lysenkoism in the old Soviet Union, and eugenics in the US and elsewhere (see the excellent archive at Cold Spring Harbor for examples of such “science”). I suspect not one in fifty Americans alive today is aware that nearly 30,000 were sterilized in the early part of the 20th century because they were deemed “genetically defective”.

To quote from the introduction to the Cold Spring Harbor website “…..It is important to remind yourself that the vast majority of eugenics work has been completely discredited. In the final analysis, the eugenic description of human life reflected political and social prejudices, rather than scientific facts.” We must try and ensure that we don’t repeat this process with the issue of climate change. (Climate Science)

Climatology Versus Climatism - ".....the End of the world is already near.....As this same End of the world is drawing nigh , many unusual things will happen-----climatic changes, terrors from heaven, unseasonable tempests, wars, famines, pestilences and earthquakes." The quotation is from a letter sent by a very famous and influential man to a European head of state. Its author is disclosed at the end of this essay. (Vinod K. Dar, Right Side News)

The EU has high hopes down-under, poor blighters: A new climate for cooperation - The climate change debate in Australia is front-page news with the release of the much-anticipated Garnaut report and the Government's green paper.

This spike in attention is indeed welcome as Australian policymakers, stakeholders and ordinary citizens start coming to grips with what must surely be the challenge of the century. I say ''start'' because this issue will need concerted action over many years if we are to combat global warming effectively.

Not only, as Professor Garnaut points out, does the issue require bipartisan support in Australia, but it requires the whole world to act concertedly if we are to preserve this world as we know it. I trust that the weight of scientific evidence is now such that no one can doubt the need for urgent international action.

The European Union has been at the forefront of the fight against climate change for almost two decades now and we are generally presented as ''a'', if not, ''the'' leader in this area. Why? (Bruno Julien, Canberra Times)

Ambassador Bruno Julien is head of the European Commission Delegation to Australia.

Permit us to answer that last one -- you tried to maneuver the rest of the industrialized world in crippling their own production base to make you competitive again. It didn't work and now you've painted yourselves into a corner and don't know how to get out. Unfortunately for you, "Focus Group" K.Rudd actually believed the carefully selected idiots lined up to parrot "we'll gladly pay lots to save the planet from gorebull warming" but Australians don't really like giving all their money to spendthrift wannabe social engineer governments. Should the K.Rudd government persist with their grandiose plans they'll be out of government at the next election. Since his only plan has ever been to be Prime Minister and he either doesn't know or care what else he might like to achieve during his tenure then committing political suicide by actually trying to implement painful and unpopular greenie wet dreams appears highly unlikely. The EU remains solo great pretenders.

Crashed before takeoff, Australia's carbon capping flirtation is over: Liberal MPs tell Nelson to stand firm on emissions trading scheme - CONSERVATIVE Liberal backbenchers have urged Brendan Nelson to "get some backbone" and abandon support for an emissions trading scheme in Australia without action by major polluters overseas.

Ahead of a two-day Liberal partyroom meeting in Canberra next week, where Dr Nelson is expected to seek the support of MPs and senators to defy his shadow cabinet on the issue, right-wing MPs have told The Australian Online the Liberal leader must make support for an ETS conditional on action by China and India.

While Liberal frontbenchers Malcolm Turnbull and Greg Hunt are preparing a submission on the Coalition's response, the MPs have broken their silence to urge Dr Nelson to dump the Coalition's election policy of supporting a scheme in 2012, regardless of action by other emitters. (The Australian)

Union voices fears on carbon trade - AUSTRALIA'S biggest blue-collar union has raised concerns about the Rudd Government introducing a carbon emissions trading system without considering the likelihood of other nations lowering their emissions.

The 130,000-strong Australian Workers Union yesterday cast doubt on Kevin Rudd's "go-it-alone" strategy, after convening a special meeting with executives from high-emitting companies in Sydney to canvass a joint approach to climate change policy.

AWU secretary Paul Howes said his union remained deeply worried about the impact of an emissions trading scheme on local jobs if the response of companies facing financial penalties under a carbon reduction scheme was to shift their operations offshore. (The Australian)

Business, unions form alliance over carbon trading - SOME of the nation's richest companies are forging an alliance with Australia's biggest blue-collar union to prevent the Rudd Government's carbon trading scheme shutting key industries.

In a rare display of workforce unity, the likes of Qantas, Rio Tinto, Shell, Alcoa and BlueScope Steel are teaming with the Australian Workers Union in an effort to halt an exodus of investment and jobs.

The business/union alliance highlights the Government's challenge as it tries to frame an emissions trading scheme that doesn't ruin the economy. (Daily Telegraph)

Democrats and Energy: Reality Bites - Former Vice President Al Gore recently took his climate-change show on the road for the benefit of liberal bloggers, Sunday morning TV aficionados and other innocent bystanders. This week he laid out his demand for a miraculous transformation in U.S. energy use over a mere 10 years. As for drilling for more oil? "Absurd," the Nobel Laureate scoffed. "When you're in a hole, stop digging."

The same might be said for Mr. Gore. For while his message hasn't changed, the political realities of the energy debate have. Suddenly, Mr. Gore's inconvenient speechifying only tightens the vise Democrats find themselves in over drilling. (Wall Street Journal)

Are Canadians really parking their cars? - People cannot stay at home with their cars parked as a way of earning enough to buy an HDTV or a sports coat (Terence Corcoran, Financial Post)

Gasoline demand is inelastic — at least in the short run - Economists expected a sharp reaction to the rise in oil prices. Here’s why it hasn’t quite happened (Vincent Geloso, Financial Post)

Not exactly... Polar power: vast oil find in Arctic - In the Arctic circle 90 billion barrels of oil and vast quantities of natural gas are waiting to be tapped, most of it offshore, the government-run US Geological Survey said on Wednesday.

The top of the world, shared by half a dozen countries including the US, Russia, Canada, Sweden, Norway and Greenland, holds an estimated 90 billion barrels of crude, 1670 trillion cubic feet of gas and 44 million barrels of natural gas liquids, the USGS said in a report. (Sydney Morning Herald)

... in fact it's just a guesstimate of possibilities.

Uh-huh... Micro and Macro - (Foreign Policy Association's "Climate Change Blog")

People send us lots of links, the above is one of them. We try to follow up by having a look at what they say and what supports their arguments. This one contains "Here’s a fascinating paper that lays out the rationale for, the shape of, and the obstacles to the SSG in Europe." Cool , we love fascinating papers.

Sadly, as is so often the case, this one shot itself down in the credibility stakes virtually immediately with the statement "Already with a global average temperature increase of 2°C over preindustrial level, an increase widely considered just enough to avoid “dangerous climate change”, major changes in precipitations patterns are to be expected."

Really? Not even the IPCC claims more than 1 °C (what was their last wild bite at the cherry, "The total temperature increase from 1850-1899 to 2001-2005 is 0.76°C ± 0.19°C."? The IPCC loves fantastically convoluted guesstimates -- IPCC TAR claimed "0.6 ± 0.2 °C since the late 19th century"). If these guys have to double already questionable claims about warming as part of their opening justification for horrendously expensive energy schemes then of what possible value is the rest of their "fascinating paper"? We think we'll pass.

Woken up at last, eh? Britain tries to block green energy laws - UK accused of rewriting rules despite Brown vow to back clean technology (The Guardian)

T. Boone is Getting on the Gravy Train - “This nation is exquisitely tied to science and technology with a citizenry which knows little about science and technology”—Carl Sagan

Oil man T. Boone Pickens recently announced his own large program to help get America off its oil addictions. His message in his own Texas twang starts off appealing, while he properly and accurately reports on the $700 billion annually we now spend on imported oil, now at 70% of our total oil consumption. That is a huge sum and economically crippling to be sending off shore.

Correcting this foreign dependence is essential for the nation’s energy security and balance of trade issues. A nation importing oil is not a new problem, having, for example, been solved nearly 40 years ago when the French replaced oil-fired electricity with nuclear energy. Our large dependence on foreign energy is dangerous to our nation’s economy and future. Just as dangerous are some of the proposed energy solutions offered to help this situation.

Regrettably, near the middle of his advertisement T. Boone wandered off into an alternative energy universe, proposing that wind and solar energy replace the current 22% of our electricity produced by natural gas. Neither source is a true alternative, and are merely erratic, unreliable, supplementary energy sources.

Leaders from both sides of the aisle throw out wind energy as a cure-all reliable source of future electrical energy. It most assuredly is not. (Michael R. Fox Ph.D., Hawaii Reporter)

T. Boone Pickens is hard-wired for subsidies - If wind energy were a sensible economic investment, it would not need the lavish subsidies Pickens seeks (Jerry Taylor, Financial Post)

When the wind stops - the other side of the wind turbine argument - The Government is committed to obtaining 15 per cent of all its energy from renewable sources by 2020 and offshore wind power has been identified as the key factor in reaching the target. But not everybody agrees (Daily Telegraph)

Uprising Against the Ethanol Mandate - The ethanol industry, until recently a golden child that got favorable treatment from Washington, is facing a critical decision on its future.

Gov. Rick Perry of Texas is asking the Environmental Protection Agency to temporarily waive regulations requiring the oil industry to blend ever-increasing amounts of ethanol into gasoline. A decision is expected in the next few weeks.

Mr. Perry says the billions of bushels of corn being used to produce all that mandated ethanol would be better suited as livestock feed than as fuel.

Feed prices have soared in the last two years as fuel has begun competing with food for cropland.

“When you find yourself in a hole, you have to quit digging,” Mr. Perry said in an interview. “And we are in a hole.”

His request for an emergency waiver cutting the ethanol mandate to 4.5 billion gallons, from the 9 billion gallons required this year and the 10.5 billion required in 2009, is backed by a coalition of food, livestock and environmental groups.

Farmers and ethanol and other biofuel producers are lobbying to keep the existing mandates. (New York Times)

Indefensible Biofuels - Advocates claim that ethanol mandates and subsidies protect our planet, enhance U.S. security, and ease our pain at the pump. In fact, ethanol policy hurts all Americans except for the tiny slice of the population that grows corn or distills it into ethanol. (William Yeatman & Marlo Lewis, American Spectator)

No? Duh! Drivers 'unaware of emission levels' - Nearly three in four drivers do not know how much carbon dioxide their car emits, it was revealed today. (Press Association)

Guess what? They don't buy cars for the express purpose of emitting CO2 so the emission figures are not relevant to them (or the planet either, but that's another matter).

Study predicts crop-production costs will jump dramatically in 2009 - Soaring energy prices will yield sharp increases for corn and soybean production next year, cutting into farmers' profits and stretching already high food costs, according to a new University of Illinois study. (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Prices of Food and Gas Take a Toll in Asia - JAKARTA, Indonesia — While prices have been rising in the United States and Europe, the biggest increases are being felt in Asia, and countries like India and Vietnam are already having to deal with double-digit inflation.

Sharp rises in global food and oil prices are now spilling over into wages and broader measures of inflation across Asia, as the Asian Development Bank noted in a report released Tuesday.

Workers are demanding higher wages to cover their rising living costs, and companies are imposing higher prices for a wide range of goods to cover accelerating production costs.

“The epicenter of the inflationary storm is really in Asia,” said Cyd Tuano-Amador, the managing director of monetary policy at the Philippines Central Bank. (New York Times)

Now even chemophobic Euros know it: Baby bottle chemical levels safe, EU agency says - MILAN - The amount of the controversial chemical bisphenol A (BPA) found in baby bottles is tiny and cannot harm human health, the European Union's top food safety body said on Wednesday reacting to recent health concerns.

Earlier this year, a heated debate over BPA safety sparked in the United States and Canada after various studies involving laboratory rodents suggested that even small levels of BPA - used in products ranging from baby and water bottles to beverage cans - can be harmful.

A scientific panel of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has looked into how people metabolise BPA and concluded that tiny amounts of the chemical to which humans are exposed leave body quick enough to cause no harm, EFSA said.

"The conclusions of the panel are that after exposure to BPA the human body rapidly metabolises and eliminates the substance. This represents an important metabolic difference compared with rats," EFSA said in a statement.

Responding to worries about babies' health, EFSA said newborns were able to metabolise and eliminate BPA at doses below 1 milligram per kilogram of body weight per day - even above the Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI) of 0.05 mg/kg/bw a day.

"Exposure of the human foetus to BPA would be negligible because the mother rapidly metabolises and eliminates BPA from her body," said the agency based in Parma in northern Italy. (Reuters)

Does too much sun cause melanoma? - We are continuously bombarded with messages about the dangers of too much sun and the increased risk of melanoma (the less common and deadliest form of skin cancer), but are these dangers real, or is staying out of the sun causing us more harm than good? Two experts debate the issue on today.

Actually there's some association between declining fitness levels and declining melanoma, also between increasing tobacco smoking and declining melanoma, the color of public telephones and melanoma, sales of the board game "Monopoly" and melanoma... what there is not in Australian data is any evidence that malignant melanoma is strongly associated with sun exposure. Worse, there is stronger indication that various morbidities and mortalities have actually increased in incidence in direct proportion to the infamous sun terror campaigns (where the Australian public has been terrorized about sun exposure in "public health" indoctrination campaigns).

Oh boy... Pittsburgh cancer center warns of cell phone risks - PITTSBURGH - The head of a prominent cancer research institute issued an unprecedented warning to his faculty and staff Wednesday: Limit cell phone use because of the possible risk of cancer.

The warning from Dr. Ronald B. Herberman, director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, is contrary to numerous studies that don't find a link between cancer and cell phone use, and a public lack of worry by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Herberman is basing his alarm on early unpublished data. (Associated Press)

Wonder if Herberman has shares in this lot: Do cell phones cause cancer? - Next time you put your cell phone to your ear, do you worry about increasing your risk of cancer?

Boca Raton businessman Shelly Kalnitsky says that fear has resulted in his company selling “hundreds of thousands” of devices that limit the radiation emitted through cell phones. His company, Interact Communications, sells a penny-sized material that fits over the cell phone ear piece which reduces radiation by as much as 97 percent. The China-made WaveShield1000 sells for $19.95. (Phil Galewitz, Palm Beach Post Blog)

Bullshit! Children will die younger than their parents, minister warns - The children of today are likely to die at a younger age than their parents as a result of the increasing obesity crisis, a senior Cabinet minister has warned. (Daily Telegraph)

Now, cheese is supposedly bad for kids... - It’s not only lunches from home banned from primary schools, now cheese has been banned from lunchrooms. (Junkfood Science)

-1 x -1 = +1 - In mathematics, a negative times a negative make a positive. But it doesn’t work that way in real life: Two wrongs don’t make a right. That’s especially the case in science. Two ineffective treatments don’t make an effective one.

But it seems some weight loss businesses are hoping consumers didn’t pay attention in math class, or science class, either. :-) (Junkfood Science)

Who says advising lots of water is harmless? - Beliefs that our bodies need detoxification, that drinking lots of water can flush away toxins and help jump start a weight loss diet, and that “life coaches” calling themselves nutritionists are licensed health professionals, all came together for one woman with heartbreaking results. Even water is not harmless. (Junkfood Science)

On Bias - What would you think if you were reading a new research result, written by people who all had advanced academic degrees in the relevant fields, that claimed that smoking cigarettes had no correlation with cancer?

You would almost certainly discount that report, given all the other information you have acquired about smoking’s effects.

Now what if you also learned that the new report was written by a group funded by R J Reynolds, the large tobacco company? Further, it comes out that nearly all of the people who contributed to the report smoked. Now what would you think?

Obviously, you would not only discount whatever you heard from the group, but you would be suspicious that whatever they told you was the exact opposite of the truth. Right?

“Embarrassed to stand up”? Good grief! (William M. Briggs, Statistician)

Hmm... Moon-walker claims alien contact cover-up - FORMER NASA astronaut and moon-walker Dr Edgar Mitchell - a veteran of the Apollo 14 mission - has stunningly claimed aliens exist. And he says extra-terrestrials have visited Earth on several occasions - but the alien contact has been repeatedly covered up by governments for six decades.

... don't know what all the fuss is about, my wife and I gather up literally hundreds of aliens every year -- and we freeze them. What sort of aliens? These kind and they're a darned nuisance here in sub-tropical Queensland. Each wet season we take additional plastic bags when we walk the dogs in the evenings, picking up the aliens as we go and when we return we put the bags in the downstairs freezer to euthanize these unwelcome visitors -- from there their next stop is landfill. The really good news is that since we have reduced the local alien population significantly the indigenous green tree frogs have had something of a population explosion.

Commercially Bred Bees Spread Disease to Wild Bees - WASHINGTON - Disease spread to wild bees from commercially bred bees used for pollination in agriculture greenhouses may be playing a role in the mysterious decline in North American bee populations, researchers said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Dinosaurs 'ran out of evolutionary steam' before they became extinct - Dinosaurs stopped evolving and taking advantage of their changing environment during their last 50 million years on Earth, scientists have learned.

They were not part of the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution around 100 million years ago, which saw the rapid expansion of many land animals and plants.

While flowering plants, lizards, snakes, birds and mammals evolved swiftly, the dinosaurs plodded behind. A short time later, they were extinct. (Daily Mail)

The salmon business: Can marine farming ever be eco friendly? - Every day, a million Britons tuck into salmon, and demand is rising fast. Marine farming is the supermarkets' answer – but can it ever be eco-friendly? Martin Hickman reports (The Independent)

July 23, 2008

SEC petitioned to warn companies against making false and misleading claims on global warming; Misinformation puts investors at risk, says Free Enterprise Action Fund (Ticker: FEAOX) - ... We believe the Commission should take action immediately to protect investors... (

The fear is palpable: American Physical Society Reaffirms Its Position that Human-Caused Greenhouse Gas Emissions Contribute to Climate Change - The American Physical Society (APS) today reaffirmed its position on climate change issued last November, releasing the following statement: "Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate. The evidence is incontrovertible: Global warming is occurring. (Press Release)

Why do you suppose a simple discussion causes such panic? Why should the APS stake out a position at all, much less issue press releases? And why are they so desperate to avoid all discussion when it should be a simple matter to prove the error of counter arguing that which they claim is so well proven? Just because the Royal Society appears to have abandoned their long-treasured motto Nullius in Verba does not mean the Physics Society should now determine science on the basis "because the loudest voices say".

The improver of natural knowledge absolutely refuses to acknowledge authority, as such. For him, scepticism is the highest of duties; blind faith the one unpardonable sin. -- Thomas H. Huxley

Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumoured by many.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books.
Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.
Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.
-- Gautama Buddha

Science ... warns me to be careful how I adopt a view which jumps with my preconceptions, and to require stronger evidence for such belief than for one to which I was previously hostile. My business is to teach my aspirations to conform themselves to fact, not to try and make facts harmonize with my aspirations. -- Thomas H. Huxley

And you can raise the sea level by spitting in the ocean - A correspondent reports:

I noticed that the American Physical Society changed the statement that preceded the paper by Christopher Monckton to:

“The following article has not undergone any scientific peer review, since that is not normal procedure for American Physical Society newsletters. The American Physical Society reaffirms the following position on climate change, adopted by its governing body, the APS Council, on November 18, 2007: "Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate."


“The following article has not undergone any scientific peer review. Its conclusions are in disagreement with the overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community. The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article's conclusions. “ (Number Watch)

Australian emissions trading stillborn: Liberals to stall on carbon emissions trading scheme - KEVIN Rudd faces a delay in the introduction of his carbon emissions trading system until after the next election, with Brendan Nelson vowing last night that the Coalition will not accept a start-up date before "2011 at the earliest".

The Opposition Leader told The Australian that the Prime Minister's plan to begin emissions trading in July 2010 was a threat to the economy and the Coalition would reject legislation allowing trading until it was clear whether China and the US would join a global pact to reduce their emissions. (The Australian)

A mandatory Federal election before implementation ensures this will never get off the ground as voters begin to learn it will actually cost them dearly even though the economy is already faltering badly.

Hypocrisies - I very much like David Aaronovitch, especially since he became an opinion writer for The Times. I don’t always agree with him, but David is unquestionably his own man, and he can turn a devastating phrase, as is brilliantly exemplified today [‘Eventually, we will all hate Obama too’, The Times, July 22; paper version, p. 22]:

“George W. Bush, of course, represents a particular kind of offence to European sensibilities. He blew out Kyoto, instead of pretending to care about it and then not implementing it, which is what our hypocrisies require.” (Global Warming Politics)

Ofcom Decision: A Humiliating Defeat for Bob Ward and the Myles Allen 37 (Steve McIntyre. Climate Audit)

David King: Hot Girls and Cold Continents (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

90 Minutes of TV; 16 Months of Handwaving… …and counting… (Climate Resistance)

It's not we who make the public sceptical on climate change - Don't blame Channel 4. It is greens trying to stamp out dissent who harm their own cause (Hamish Mykura, The Guardian)

Mary Dejevsky: Don't silence those who challenge consensus - The documentary was called The Great Global Warming Swindle, and it caused just as much of a storm as Channel 4 intended, though probably not quite in the way its editors had hoped. Shown in March last year, the programme had a central thesis that made it the subject of controversy long before it was shown. This was that the increase in global temperatures observed in recent decades was not caused primarily by the burning of fossil fuels and the resulting greenhouse gas emissions, but by other, less controllable, factors.

In so arguing, the film cast doubt on what might be called – though you might detect a prejudgement here – the whole global-warming industry. For if the rise in global temperatures is not mainly a consequence of burning fossil fuels, then there is little point in anyone trying to cut such emissions, either nationally or globally. The Americans can continue running their gas-guzzlers; the Chinese and Indians can cheerfully carry on building power stations, and we British can go back to our slovenly habit of leaving the lights on. The only price any of us will pay for such profligacy will be financial, as scarcity and speculation drive the prices higher. We will not be condemning the planet to drought or famine, still less to premature extinction.

Predictably, given the intellectual capital invested in the view that global warming is largely man-made, the documentary drew complaints – not just from climate-change prophets indignant that Channel 4 was spreading what they saw as false information, but from eminent individuals and groups who felt misled about the programme's purpose. One of these was the Government's former chief scientific adviser, Sir David King. (The Independent)

Check it out and see what you think. Get your copy and help at the same time!

More Bad News for the Global Warmers - The issue of global warming rages on is some minds. Remarkably, there really hasn’t been much of a debate, not a serious science debate anyway. There have been shouting and screaming, predictions of doom, and the willingness to destroy our energy sources and our economy to “save the planet”. But as P.J. O’Rourke noted, there are a lot of people who would do anything to “save the planet”, except take a science course.

While there hasn’t been a true debate, there has been a hugely one-sided angry monologue, heaping scorn upon those who dare ask for evidence. The one side has been heavily funded by the government, foundations, and individual contributions. The so-called “warmers” have enjoyed the unstinting support of a scientifically illiterate media, the movie industry, and many institutions that have been on the receiving end of an estimated $5 billion annually for nearly 2 decades. That will buy a lot of supporters, Ph.Ds or not. (Michael R. Fox, Hawaii Reporter)

Opening Statement of Senator James Inhofe
Senate Environment and Public Works Full Committee
An Update on the Science of Global Warming and its Implications
Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Madame Chairman, I am very disappointed to see that this Committee is once again beginning its deliberations on global warming in the wrong manner. Rather than focusing on substantive issues that would be helpful to the debate on global warming legislation, this Committee is choosing to engage in more political theater with a predetermined outcome. The rushed process and the complete lack of understanding of the policy implications of the Lieberman Warner doomed it from the start. Opposition to the bill was not limited to Republicans, as nearly 30% of Senate Democrats refused to support the bill.

If this Committee were serious in undertaking efforts to draft global warming policy rather than score political points, it should be focusing its efforts in a much more methodical and deliberative manner that acknowledges the complexity of the issues surrounding any mandatory emission reduction policy. Regardless of my own position on this topic, the Committee should be exploring issues to help build a record on how to draft a cap and trade system, the level of technology currently available to achieve reductions, how to allocate credits, how to design an auction system, how to create a domestic offset program, what the international impacts will be on trade and particularly exports, how to effectively contain costs through a transparent mechanism, and the list could go on. (E&PW)

At Hearing, Official EIB Clown Attacks Official EIB Climatologist - BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: The official climatologist of the EIB Network, Dr. Roy Spencer, a brilliant independent climatologist and scientist, former NASA, he's now at University of Alabama at Huntsville, testified before Senator Boxer's committee on climate change research, and they had the following exchange. (

Get your copy of Roy Spencer's book and help at the same time

More economic saboteurs: Don't Offset Your CO2 Emissions, Retire Them - LONDON - At the age of 25, Dan Lewer is going into retirement -- carbon emissions retirement that is.

Lewer is co-founder of a new online carbon offset company called Carbon Retirement (, which launched on July 15.

Carbon Retirement offers consumers and companies a novel approach to offsetting their carbon footprint by letting them dip into the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme, the 27-nation bloc's flagship weapon in fighting climate change.

Now in its second phase running from 2008-2012, the EU scheme sets an emissions cap for its heavy industry and allocates a fixed number of permits, called EUAs, each allowing the bearer to pollute or trade the equivalent of one tonne of carbon dioxide (CO2).

While traditional offset vendors sell verified emission reduction credits generated by clean energy projects like hydro dams and wind farms, often in developing countries, Carbon Retirement buys and "retires" EU permits on behalf of its clients. (Reuters)

And all the more reason never to have carbon caps.

Everybody's got to get into the act: Architects say climate change could make suburbs more livable - Some of Australia top architects gathered at a conference in Melbourne last week turned their minds to office blocks modelled on termite nests and buildings that can photosynthesise. (Australian Broadcasting Corp.)

Dangling money is a good way to keep universities on song: On the front line of climate change - UNIVERSITIES should have a formal role in developing the new low-emissions technologies and training the interdisciplinary professionals required to help the country cope with climate change, Ross Garnaut is advising the Government. (The Australian)

Climate change policy leaves the voters in the dark - Australians don't know what to make of the federal Government's plans to tackle climate change, a survey says.

An Essential Research poll released yesterday showed respondents were evenly split between thinking the Government's response to the Garnaut report got the balance right, went too far, or did not go far enough.

The most common response was "don't know", which attracted 32 per cent of respondents. (AAP)

Back to cat plagues: Global Warming Could be Causing a Kitten Boom, Experts Say - Global warming and kittens. While it may seem hard to see the connection between the two - a climate phenomenon that melts glaciers and acidifies oceans, and cuddly, 4-ounce balls of fur - experts say there could be one. (infoZine)

Stuck on Stupid: climate activist tries to superglue himself to UK Prime Minister (Watts Up With That?)

Integrated Land Use Approach - An Example Of Applying The “Vulnerability Paradigm” - There is an interesting concept in land management that relates directly to the integrated approach Climate Science has recommended with respect to the reduction of vulnerability (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Algal Blooms: Not Caused by Global Warming - It seems that global warming is as easy to blame as “the devil made me do it” these days. Almost anything can be blamed on global warming it seems. It has become the new universal evil, replacing the threat of communism as the new global menace. But it doesn’t always deserve the blame for things that happen in our world, and with a little digging, you can often find that blaming global warming for a variety of ills and changes is about as credible as blaming the boogeyman. Consider algae blooms for example. (Watts Up With That?)

Arctic lake a laboratory for studying climate change's effects on ecosystem - Scientist Anne Hershey paddled a small inflatable raft across an arctic lake, pausing in her stroke to consider how the melting permafrost caused a landslide of mud and sediment spilling down the bank into the water.

Since the bank collapsed two years ago, the water has grown cloudy with sediment, providing scientists a natural laboratory for studying how warmer temperatures may play out in ecosystems far and near.

Global air and water temperatures are inching up, causing seas to warm and expand, and polar ice to melt. Alaska is warming more quickly than lower latitudes of the United States, so scientists can observe changes from global warming here first. The average annual temperature in arctic Alaska has increased about 4 degrees Fahrenheit in 50 years, according to the Alaska Climate Research Center. (McClatchy newspapers)

Yup... and all that warming occurred in the1970s. Looks remarkably like a response to the Pacific step-warming of 1976/77, doesn't it? And that was due to a PDO phase shift, wasn't it?

From CO2 Science this week:

The Global Food and Water Crisis: It's the real planetary emergency facing the world, as opposed to Al Gore's "climate crisis," and its solution is just the opposite of what the former US Vice President wants to see happen.

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
Was there a Medieval Warm Period? YES, according to data published by 563 individual scientists from 339 separate research institutions in 38 different countries ... and counting! This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from Hallet Lake, Alaska, USA. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Little Ice Age (Regional - Europe: Central): What do we know about the Little Ice Age as it was expressed in Central Europe? And what does that knowledge imply about past and current warmth?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Olive Tree, Rice, and Wheat.

Journal Reviews:
U.S. Landfalling Hurricanes: Are they affected by global warming? ... and, if so, how?

Return Periods of U.S. Landfalling Hurricanes: What are they? ... and how might they have changed over the past century?

Effects of Elevated CO2 on Barley Growing Under Iron-Limited Conditions: In what ways can atmospheric CO2 enrichment augment the growth of the crop?

Blue Alder Leaf Beetles vs. Silver Birch Seedlings: Which would likely gain an advantage over the other in a CO2-enriched and warmer world?

CO2 Enrichment of Potatoes: How does it impact their growth and water use?

Odessa, WATemperature Record of the Week:
This issue's Temperature Record of the Week is from Odessa, WA. During the period of most significant greenhouse gas buildup over the past century, i.e., 1930 and onward, Odessa's mean annual temperature has cooled by 0.78 degrees Fahrenheit. Not much global warming here!

Turn Out the Lights - Coal-fired power plants produce about half the nation’s electricity. Natural gas-fired plants contribute roughly twenty percent. He didn’t mention nuclear (another 20%) or hydropower (7%), so I’m not sure whether he proposes to keep or replace those sources. Electric utility companies are having a hard time building enough new power plants to keep up with increasing demand. Most of the new power being installed is coal or gas. At a minimum, it takes several years to design, arrange financing, permit, and build any new power facility. Gore is proposing that we close thousands of plants worth trillions of dollars and replace them with thousands of new plants costing trillions of dollars in a decade. That sounds a little unrealistic to me. (Myron Ebell, Cooler Heads Digest)

An Inconvenient Perception: Voters Say Gore Plan Unrealistic, Costly - Only 33% of American voters believe Al Gore’s proposal to switch all of the nation's electricity production to wind, solar and other carbon-free sources in 10 years is realistic. And, beyond the Democratic Party base, most voters think Gore’s plan will make energy prices go up.

A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey found that 62% of Republicans -- and over half (52%) of unaffiliated voters -- believe that Gore’s approach will drive the cost of energy even higher. Even among Democrats, 26% hold that view.

Still, a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey, taken Sunday night, also finds that 53% of Americans have a favorable opinion of the former vice president and 41% agree with his views on the environment and energy. The partisan divide is evident throughout these questions, with Democrats supportive of their unsuccessful 2000 presidential candidate and Republicans skeptical of him. Unaffiliated voters generally share the skepticism. (Rasmussen Reports)

No: California green energy proposal has thin support - LOS ANGELES - Awareness is low, but 63 percent of those who had a view on it favor a California ballot measure that would require half the state's electricity to come from renewable sources by 2025, a Field poll issued on Tuesday shows.

Voter awareness of Proposition 7 on the November ballot is extremely low -- 82 percent of those interviewed said they did not know of the measure. (Reuters)

In fact just 11% favor such a measure, i.e., less than two-thirds of the less-than-one-fifth of voters polled who had actually even heard of the proposal. That makes it a major lack of support.

America Needs A (Shale) Oil Change - In boldly announcing plans to unlock the crude in America's vast shale-oil reserves, President Bush is showing real leadership. Now only Congress stands in the way of a brighter energy future. (IBD)

Shut Up and Produce Some Oil - Liberals are flailing about looking for some political cover on energy and gas prices. For decades now, they have supported the policies of extremists who have systematically sought to shut down every major energy source for our economy. We can't drill for oil offshore, we can't drill in the frozen tundra of north Alaska, we can't even develop oil shale on the mainland. Liberals are even opposing the development of new oil discoveries in the Plains states. Meanwhile, China is now producing oil from wells in Cuban waters off the coast of Florida, selling and reaping enormous profits from oil that America should be producing.

Nuclear power? Can't have that. Jane Fonda showed us in a movie in the 1970s how dangerous that is. France and Japan have produced most of their electricity for decades through the nuclear power technology that America developed, and they are now competing to sell nuclear plant development to China and India. (Peter Ferrara, American Spectator)

Pelosi's Price - Americans expect and need a Speaker of the House who offers common-sense leadership to direct bipartisan legislative action. Nancy Pelosi is not up to that task, and our nation is the loser. (IBD)

Getting lease for oil drilling is just the start - HOUSTON — The national debate over opening more offshore areas to oil and gas exploration has begged the question: Just what are the companies doing with the tens of millions of acres they're already leasing from the federal government? (AP)

Oil Leasing 101 - Working as a land clerk for a small Denver oil exploration company in 1981, I did a lot of work that never resulted in a drop of oil. We worked to get a high percentage of the leases covering a certain field, but sometimes another company, such as Anadarko, held too much of the area or we had to wait on cantankerous rancher holdouts. It was a long, many times unsuccessful, process. (Julie Walsh, Cooler Heads Digest)

Potential Impacts of Climate Change on U.S. Transportation: Special Report 290 - The Transportation Research Board (TRB) and the Division on Earth and Life Studies (DELS) have released the pre-publication version of TRB Special Report 290, The Potential Impacts of Climate Change on U.S. Transportation, which explores the consequences of climate change for U.S. transportation infrastructure and operations. The report provides an overview of the scientific consensus on the current and future climate changes of particular relevance to U.S. transportation, including the limits of present scientific understanding as to their precise timing, magnitude, and geographic location; identifies potential impacts on U.S. transportation and adaptation options; and offers recommendations for both research and actions that can be taken to prepare for climate change. The report also summarizes previous work on strategies for reducing transportation-related emissions of carbon dioxide the primary greenhouse gas that contribute to climate change. Five commissioned papers used by the committee to help develop the report, a summary of the report, and a National Academies press release associated with the report are available online. DELS, like TRB, is a division of the National Academies, which include the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine, and National Research Council. (NAP)

Europe: Five Minutes to Midnight - The European Union, overly reliant on imported oil and gas, now sees its economies seriously threatened by rampant fuel price rises, not to mention the menacing shadow of power cuts. Then there’s the self-imposed tyranny of its over-ambitious carbon dioxide emission targets. All of these have the E.U. on the horns of a dilemma.

Yet for all the subsidies poured into development of alternative renewable energy sources, the European Commission has clearly concluded that nuclear power offers the only serious and clean energy solution to its fast-approaching energy crisis, a solution unthinkable just a few years ago. E.U. leaders know that time is running out.

But the E.U. leadership finds itself between a rock (uranium) and a hard place (convincing a post-Chernobyl, skeptical Europe to trust using it). Split by two powerful opposing factions, Europe’s political impasse may be broken in the time-honored E.U. tradition: national self-interest, which may come through a chain reaction recently begun when the U.K. announced policies that will likely result in new nuclear plants in the British Isles. (Peter Glover, Energy Tribune)

Britain Pushes on With Nuclear Power Revival Plan - LONDON - Britain wants to be the most attractive place in the world to build nuclear power plants and has published draft rules for finding places in England and Wales to do it. (Reuters)

£37bn plan to power EU with the Saharan sun - Vast farms of solar panels in the Sahara could provide clean electricity for the whole of Europe, according to EU scientists working on a plan to pool the region's renewable energy.

Harnessing the power of the desert sun is at the centre of an ambitious scheme to build a €45bn (£35.7bn) European supergrid that would allow countries across the continent to share electricity from abundant green sources such as wind energy in the UK and Denmark, and geothermal energy from Iceland and Italy.

The idea is gaining political support in Europe, with Gordon Brown and Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, recently backing the north African solar plan.

Because the sunlight is more intense, solar photovoltaic panels in north Africa could generate up to three times the electricity compared with similar panels in northern Europe. (The Guardian)

<chuckle> Harvest the Sun — From Space - AS we face $4.50 a gallon gas, we also know that alternative energy sources — coal, oil shale, ethanol, wind and ground-based solar — are either of limited potential, very expensive, require huge energy storage systems or harm the environment. There is, however, one potential future energy source that is environmentally friendly, has essentially unlimited potential and can be cost competitive with any renewable source: space solar power.

Science fiction? Actually, no — the technology already exists. A space solar power system would involve building large solar energy collectors in orbit around the Earth. These panels would collect far more energy than land-based units, which are hampered by weather, low angles of the sun in northern climes and, of course, the darkness of night.

Once collected, the solar energy would be safely beamed to Earth via wireless radio transmission, where it would be received by antennas near cities and other places where large amounts of power are used. The received energy would then be converted to electric power for distribution over the existing grid. Government scientists have projected that the cost of electric power generation from such a system could be as low as 8 to 10 cents per kilowatt-hour, which is within the range of what consumers pay now. (New York Times)

You think people get upset about EMFs now, wait until we start trying to irradiate the planet with microwave energy from space :)

Malaria Millennium Development Goal 'unlikely to be met' - The Millennium Development Goal (MDG) to halt and begin to reverse the incidence of malaria globally is unlikely to be met, according to Wellcome Trust Principal Research Fellow Professor Bob Snow. The statement comes in a report published today in the open access journal PLoS Medicine.

For Clean Water: Chlorine-tolerant membranes for desalination - One of the most pressing needs of our time is safe, sustainable access to fresh water. The dominant technology for desalination of water is membrane-based desalination, an energy-efficient, environmentally friendly process. Scientists have now developed a new membrane material that, unlike current polyamide membranes, tolerates chlorinated water. (

Hydrologic Effects of a Changing Forest Landscape - Of all the outputs of forests, water may be the most important streamflow from forests provides two-thirds of the nation s clean water supply. Removing forest cover accelerates the rate that precipitation becomes streamflow; therefore, in some areas, cutting trees causes a temporary increase in the volume of water flowing downstream. This effect has spurred political pressure to cut trees to increase water supply, especially in western states where population is rising. However, cutting trees for water gains is not sustainable: increases in flow rate and volume are typically short-lived, and the practice can ultimately degrade water quality and increase vulnerability to flooding. Forest hydrology, the study of how water flows through forests, can help illuminate the connections between forests and water, but it must advance if it is to deal with today s complexities, including climate change, wildfires, and changing patterns of development and ownership. This book identifies actions that scientists, forest and water managers, and citizens can take to help sustain water resources from forests. (NAP)

Outdoor Enthusiasts Scaring Off Native Carnivores In Parks - Even a quiet stroll in the park can dramatically change natural ecosystems, according to a new study by conservation biologists from the University of California, Berkeley. These findings could have important implications for land management policies. (ScienceDaily)

Uh-huh... now they'll try to exclude humans as "unnatural", I suppose.

Russian Bears Trap Geology Survey Crew - VLADIVOSTOK, Russia - At least 30 hungry bears have trapped a group of geologists at their remote survey site in Russia's far east after killing two of their co-workers last week, emergency officials said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Wanted, members of voluntary human extinction group and other watermelons to feed hungry bears (why wait when you can return something to nature now?). Environmentally friendly bicycle transport provided. No experience necessary. Apply in person Kamchatka Peninsula Geo-survey Camp.

July 22, 2008

American physicists warned not to debate global warming - Bureaucrats at the American Physical Society (APS) have issued a curious warning to their members about an article in one of their own publications. Don't read this, they say - we don't agree with it. But what is it about the piece that is so terrible, that like Medusa, it could make men go blind? (Andrew Orlowski, The Register)


Artie Bienenstock []

20 July 2008

Thank you for your message concerning the American Physical Society's treatment of the article by Lord Monckton in the Newsletter of the Forum on Physics and Society. I am writing to discuss issues raised by some of you.

Some of those writing to me have claimed that the American Physical Society is censoring Lord Monckton's article in the Newsletter of the APS' Forum on Physics and Society. That is far from the case. The article has been presented and retained in the form agreed upon by him and the Newsletter's editor.  You will find it readily available on the APS' website in that form.

Indeed, there was absolutely no censoring. The APS did not even do a scientific evaluation or peer review of the article. Lord Moncton's presentation of the interaction between him and the editor indicates clearly that the editor's review was aimed at ensuring the clarity and readability of the article by the intended audience. As Lord Monckton points out in his covering letter to me, "Most revisions were intended to clarify for physicists who were not climatologists the method by which the IPCC evaluates climate sensitivity - a method which the IPCC does not itself clearly or fully explain."

That is, the review was an editorial review for a newsletter, and not the substantive scientific peer review required for publication in our journals. No attempt was made to analyze the scientific substance of the article and no censoring was performed.  As indicated above and in Lord Monckton's letter to me, the article appears in the form agreed upon by Lord Monckton.

Some people and news services misinterpreted the Newsletter publication of one editor's comments and Lord Monckton's article as a retreat by the American Physical Society from its official position on the contribution of human activities to global warming. Consequently, the APS felt it necessary to ensure that its official position was known both to those who logged on to the APS website and those who had followed a link to Lord Monckton's article on our website and were unaware of the context in which it appears. That is the origin of the comment that appears at the top of the article on the website. I am sure that you would not want the Society's position to be misunderstood in this important matter.

I hope that this clarifies matters for you. Let me thank you again for your interest in the American Physical Society's activities.

Arthur Bienenstock, President
American Physical Society

Arthur Bienenstock
Special Assistant to the President for Federal Research Policy
Director, Wallenberg Research Link
Stanford University
Building 160, Room 223
Stanford, CA 94305


The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley
Carie, Rannoch, PH17 2QJ

Arthur Bienenstock, Esq., Ph.D.,
President, American Physical Society,
Wallenberg Hall, 450 Serra Mall, Bldg 160, Stanford University, Palo
Alto, CA 94305.

By email to

21 July 2008

Dear Dr. Bienenstock,

Physics and Society

I have had your notice of refusal to remove your regrettable disclaimer from my paper Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered. Since you have not had the courtesy to remove and apologize for the unacceptable red-flag text that, on your orders, in effect invites readers of Physics and Society to disregard the paper that one of your editors had invited me to submit, and which I had submitted in good faith, and which I had revised in good faith after it had been meticulously reviewed by a Professor of Physics who was more than competent to review it, I must now require you to answer the questions that I had asked in my previous letter, videlicet -

1. Please provide the name and qualifications of the member of the Council or advisor to it (if any) who considered my paper (if anyone considered it) before the Council ordered the offending text to be posted above my paper;

2. Please provide a copy of this rapporteur's findings (if any) and ratio decidendi (if any);

3. Please provide the date of the Council meeting (if there was one) at which the report (if any) was presented;

4. Please provide a copy of the minutes (if any) of the discussion (if there was one);

5. Please provide a copy of the text (if any) of the Council's decision (if there was one);

6. Please provide a list of the names of those present (if any) at that Council meeting (if there was one);

7. If, as your silence on these points implies, the Council has not scientifically evaluated or formally considered my paper, please explain with what credible scientific justification, and on whose authority, the offending text asserts -

primo, that the paper had not been scientifically reviewed, when it had (let us have no more semantic quibbles about the meaning of "scientific review");

secundo, that its conclusions disagree with what is said (on no evidence) to be the "overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community"; and,

tertio, that "The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article's conclusions"? Which of my conclusions does the Council disagree with, and on what scientific grounds (if any)? And, if the Council has not in fact met to consider my paper as your red-flag text above my paper implies, how dare you state (on no evidence) that the Council disagrees with my conclusions?

8. Please provide the requested apology without any further mendacity, prevarication, evasion, excuse, or delay.

Finally, was the Council's own policy statement on "global warming" peer-reviewed? Or is it a mere regurgitation of some of the opinions of the UN's climate panel? If the latter, why was the mere repetition thought necessary?

Yours truly,


Excerpts from “Apocalypse? No!” [DVD available through and

Get your copy of this important DVD and help at the same time!

Monckton, APS, and Medusa (The Reference Frame)

Pope Silent on Climate Change, Global Warming - Despite widespread media reports that Pope Benedict XVI has expressed concern about global warming and climate change, the pontiff never mentioned either term in a recent speech.

According to the Acton Institute, a number of media reports covering the pope's speech at the World Youth Day event in Sydney, Australia, characterize him as being alarmed about global warming and climate change. In fact, the Acton Institute reports that the pope's nearly 2,700-word speech used neither term. (Phil Brennan, Newsmax)

NASA Climate Alarmist Attacks NewsBusters' Sheppard - Updates at end of post: Schmidt responds to (and ignores!) NBers' questions. (Noel Sheppard, NewsBusters)

Oceanic Influences On Recent Continental Warming - An Important New Research Paper: Compo and Sardeshmukh, 2008 - Climate Science has previously weblogged on an important new perspective on the role of regional climate forcings on climate variability and change which involves ocean-atmosphere interactions (e.g. see and see). Now there is a very significant new paper on this subject by this research group which should attract major attention. It is Compo,G.P., and P.D. Sardeshmukh, 2008: Oceanic influences on recent continental warming. Climate Dynamics, in press. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

The rise and rise of Climate Blasphemy - Today’s Ofcom ruling on The Great Global Warming Swindle strengthens the censorious forcefield around climate change experts. (Brendan O’Neill, sp!ked)

Warming Swindle film swindled of justice - Ofcom, Britain’s media regulator, seems to have been too quick to damn the Great Global Warming Swindle, and too quick to exonerate one of Britain's leading warming hysterics: (Andrew Bolt Blog)

Ofcom Broadcast Bulletin issue number 114 - Ofcom today published Broadcast Bulletin issue number 114. The Bulletin details the outcome of Ofcom's investigation into The Great Global Warming Swindle, broadcast on Channel 4 on 8 March 2007. This programme sought to challenge the theory that human activity is the major cause of climate change and global warming. (Ofcom) | Broadcast Bulletin Issue number 114 - 21|07|08 (Ofcom)

Unusually, we agree with Bob: The public has been swindled - Ofcom's censure of Channel 4 is flawed: The Great Global Warming Swindle clearly misled viewers about climate change (Robert Watson, The Guardian)

Ofcom's censure is flawed and should not have been made at all. By definition the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is a political organization and King either said or directly implied precisely as was attributed to him. Wunsch's complaint, such as it is, amounts to no more than academic naivety, if that. To the extent that TGWS did mislead viewers it did so to the benefit of the pro-warming camp by stating unequivocally that the world is warming, something which is becoming increasingly doubtful. Compared to, say, BBC News coverage, TGWS is the epitome of restraint and factual representation.

Ofcom can't take the heat of climate debate - The climate change lobby tends to react like scalded cats should anyone have the temerity to question their assertion that global warming is a man-made phenomenon. So certain are they of the righteousness of their case that it has taken on the aura of a religious faith - and heresy will simply not be tolerated. (Daily Telegraph)

Flashback video: Glenn Beck: The Great Global Warming Swindle - April 2007 - Glenn Beck discusses global warming theories and interviews Martin Durkin.

Was Durkin's documentary really on Channel 4? - Doesn't look like the News department watched it...

Check it out and see what you think. Get your copy and help at the same time!

Moonbat with a couple of bites at the cherry: Global warming is a brutal truth - Channel 4's dismissal of Ofcom's damning verdict about its flawed programme is the usual professional self-deception (George Monbiot, The Guardian)

Why does Channel 4 seem to be waging a war against the greens? - As Channel 4 is once again fiercely criticised by the TV watchdog for distorting the views of climate scientists, George Monbiot lays bare the channel's shameful history of misleading its viewers on global warming (George Monbiot, The Guardian)

Actually George, no one is "waging war against the greens" which is a major problem with today's society. What use are they if you don't paint roundels on them and use them for live fire training? (Oh, George? That was a facetious remark, mate. I know you have a lot of trouble with reality.)

Al Gore's Doomsday Clock - Al Gore gave a speech last week "challenging" America to run "on 100% zero-carbon electricity in 10 years" -- though that's just the first step on his road to "ending our reliance on carbon-based fuels." Serious people understand this is absurd. Maybe other people will start drawing the same conclusion about the man proposing it.

The former vice president has also recently disavowed any intention of returning to politics. This is wise. As America's leading peddler of both doom and salvation, Mr. Gore has moved beyond the constraints and obligations of reality. His job is to serve as a Prophet of Truth. (Brett Stephens, Wall Street Journal)

Do as Al says, not as Al does - On Thursday, former U. S. vice-president Al Gore delivered a major address calling on his country to abandon all fossil fuels within 10 years. By 2018, U. S. electricity and fuel should come entirely from "renewable energy and truly clean, carbon-free sources," he said. Tickets to the event encouraged attendees to "please use public transit, bicycling or other climate-friendly means" to reach the lecture hall.

So how did Mr. Gore and his retinue arrive? In two Lincoln Town Cars and a full-sized SUV that sat idling with the air conditioners blasting while the Gore party was inside.

It was 34 C in Washington. Al Gore can't be expected to get into an overheated vehicle after he's worked up a sweat telling others how to save the planet. (Lorne Gunter, National Post)

The sky is falling on Gore again - Al Gore has certainly secured his place in history. His Academy-Award-Pulitzer-Prize-winning prediction that climate change will raise sea levels by 20 feet will be studied by future history students, along with the predictions of Malthus and Paul Ehrlich.

With Gore-like zeal, in the 19th century, Malthus predicted that the world’s population would soon outstrip the world’s food supply. In the 20th century, Paul Ehrlich predicted that "By 1985 enough millions will have died to reduce the earth's population to some acceptable level, like 1.5 billion people."

He also predicted that by 1980, life expectancy in the United States would drop to 42, and that the U.S. population would drop to 22.6 million by 1999.

The grand prize for idiotic predictions in the 21st century has already been claimed by Al Gore. His insistence that the earth will fry, that the seas will rise, and that life as we know it must undergo a “wrenching transformation” will be studied by his grandchildren with the same appreciation that his, and Ehrlich’s ridiculous predictions deserve. (Henry Lamb, American Daily)

Happy 50th gorebull warming: 1958 - Global Warming - It's NOT newly known - For FIFTY YEARS scientists have known about global warming. This excerpt is from the well known educational documentary "Unchained Goddess" produced by Frank Capra for Bell Labs for their television program "The Bell Telephone Hour." It was so well made, that it went on to live a continued life in middle school science classrooms across the nation for decades.

Nearly half a century before Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth," this film was made. But what does it reveal? That our scientists have known for over two generations about this danger, but our politicians and citizenry have chosen to ignore the dangerous implications of this fact until it really is too late to avoid the preventable consequences.

Perhaps we deserve our fate.

And yet we are still here and the world is, um, not warming.

Shortening the fuse? '100 months to save the planet' - A "Green New Deal" is needed to solve current problems of climate change, energy and finance, a report argues. According to the Green New Deal Group, humanity only has 100 months to prevent dangerous global warming. (BBC)

Inconvenient truths for PM big on promises - BEHIND the hype of the Garnaut Report and the Rudd Government's carbon emissions green paper lie some very inconvenient facts. (The Australian)

Oh... Smoke From Wildfires May Block Warming of Arctic, Study Says -- Smoke spreading across the sky from intense wildfires in North America could act temporarily to blunt the effect of global warming in the Arctic, climate researchers said. (Bloomberg)

Back to the old "It would have warmed like we said, but..." (Remember items like this?) Of course, the opposing claim is also popular: Arctic climate study reveals impact of industrial soot - "Scientists from the Desert Research Institute (DRI) and their collaborators have determined that Northern Hemisphere industrial pollution resulted in a seven-fold increase in black carbon (soot) in Arctic snow during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, according to new research into the impact of black carbon on Arctic climate forcing." and Man-Made Soot Contributed To Warming In Greenland In The Early 20th Century. (This one had the cutsie graphic of a soot-blackened building.)

About all that warming and loss of permafrost... The greatest story of man and permafrost - Strung over and beneath the surface of Alaska from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez, the trans-Alaska pipeline, at 31 years old, is entering its second lifetime. The four-foot in diameter, half-inch-thick steel pipe had an original design lifespan of 30 years. The State of Alaska and the U.S. Department of the Interior recently gave the pipeline the green light for another 30 years of operation.

Permafrost, frozen ground that is a relic of the last ice age, exists beneath about 75 percent of the pipeline’s 800-mile route. When ice-rich permafrost thaws, the ground slumps, causing problems for structures above.

After the 1969 oil discovery at Prudhoe Bay, developers unfamiliar with Alaska wanted to bury the entire supply of Japanese-made pipe. After a review by people who knew the dangers of building on permafrost, a legion of workers constructed a pipeline buried for 380 miles and—in areas of permafrost—built above the ground on platforms for 420 miles.

When the pipeline was two years old in 1979, the pipe buckled and leaked in two buried sections because of thawed permafrost. In both cases, the pipeline, which carried oil that left the ground in Prudhoe Bay as warm as 145 degrees Fahrenheit, caused about four feet of settlement. Engineers fixed those and other problems.

The two leaks in 1979 are still the only spills caused by permafrost.

The pipeline has delivered more than 16 billion barrels of oil since its startup in June 1977, with two brief shutdowns due to permafrost. Johnson estimated permafrost-related maintenance has totaled about 5-to-10 percent of the operating costs over the life of the pipeline. (Alaska Science Forum)

Eye-roller of the moment: Federal Green Paper 'too late' to save Great Barrier Reef - THE Federal Government is being warned its Green Paper on emissions trading will not do enough to save the Great Barrier Reef from destruction. (Courier-Mail)

The damn thing stretches over roughly 25 degrees of latitude, about 15 °C (27 °F) average water temperature and positively thrives in the warmest regions. Even if gorebull warming were true the GBR would likely benefit.

Uh-huh... Warming West is ground zero for wildfires - California has been hit by 2,000 fires this year, and climate scientists are predicting that the situation will worsen as temperatures rise. (SF Chronicle)

Scientists offer new explanation for monsoon development - Geoscientists at the California Institute of Technology have come up with a new explanation for the formation of monsoons, proposing an overhaul of a theory about the cause of the seasonal pattern of heavy winds and rainfall that essentially had held firm for more than 300 years. (CIT)

Nutty Story of the Day #2: whitewashing the ocean - How much lime does it take to treat the whole ocean? Where have we heard this before? Oh yes, dump powdered iron into the ocean. That one didn’t happen yet. Sure, let’s just toss a bunch of lime into the ocean and watch what happens. We’ll just order up a few billion bags of slaked lime and toss ‘em into the sea, yeah, that’s the ticket. Note that there is no discussion of what all that lime might do to upset other balances, just so long as we get rid of that nasty CO2. Thank goodness another professor from James Hansen’s Columbia University gives a stamp of approval.

I’d love to see the environmental impact report on this one, especially when they find out that lime does not dissolve immediately or completely in water, but tends to settle. (Watts Up With That?)

Amazon powers tropical ocean's carbon sink - Nutrients from the Amazon River spread well beyond the continental shelf and drive carbon capture in the deep ocean, according to the authors of a multi-year study. (USC)

Banks are there to help you -- and save the world... Banking on carbon trading: Can banks stop climate change? -- Who would think the banks would land the job of sorting out the world's climate change problems?

'Cap and trade' has been touted as way to encourage investment in renewable energy.

But strange as it may seem, there are many who believe that only the world's financial institutions can help us now.

Since the arrival of the European Union's Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS) and the 'Kyoto Market', backed by the United Nations' Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), some of the world's biggest banks have been stepping up their activities in carbon finance.

They say it is to ensure these two carbon trading markets actually do what they are supposed to do. And that is to reduce emissions and to spur the global move towards renewable energy.

Their detractors, however, are concerned that all carbon trading will ultimately do is make the banks a lot of money. (CNN)

An Energy Sarbox - The political class needed to blame somebody for the run-up in energy prices, and settled on "speculators" as the designated villains. The mob grew to include everyone from Barack Obama to John McCain, and Bill O'Reilly to Hugo Chávez. Congress held over 40 hearings this summer. It was cynical, sure, but serious people assumed that the politicians were in on the conceit.

Maybe not. While some kind of crackdown on the U.S. oil futures market is inevitable after so much political agitation, Congress has begun to believe its own demagoguery. The Senate may vote on a bill this week that will drive commodities trading overseas and decrease oversight and market transparency. Call it a Sarbanes-Oxley for energy. (Wall street Journal)

Coal carves a place in the future of global energy - As the price of oil and natural gas soars, many customers are looking to coal as an alternative fuel. That means a boon for suppliers -- and a potential bane for the environment. (Los Angeles Times)

Britain Must Set Deadline to Close Dirty Power Plants - LONDON - The British government must set a deadline for closing all coal-fired power stations whose smokestack emissions have not been slashed by carbon capture technology, a parliamentary report said on Tuesday.

The Environmental Audit Committee also warned against the government allowing coal-fired power plants to be built that were "CCS ready" -- able to be fitted with carbon capture and storage technology once it is commercially proven and available.

"Carbon capture and storage has undoubted potential, but there is a real question about when it will become technologically and, equally importantly, commercially viable," said committee chairman Tim Yeo. (Reuters)

Ministers embrace electric car revolution - A transport gear change could see vehicles given away free, with revenue made from selling motorists contracts to supply power (The Independent)

The UK's ability to maintain baseload electricity is in a terminal state with EU edicts demanding the closure of some and draconian restriction of other power plants and nuclear plants nearing the end of their useful life. How are they to power the transport fleet from the grid when they can't even power homes and industry?

China Tries To Make Exxon A Pawn - Big Oil is easy to kick around — just ask any Democrat in Congress. But China's threats to Exxon Mobil are in another league. Its bid to use Exxon Mobil as a wedge against its rival Vietnam is a case in point. (IBD)

The race to own the top of the world - Melting icecap has circumpolar countries - including Canada - scrambling to bolster their claims to Arctic territory and the oil and gas riches beneath its seabed. (Globe and Mail)

EU Retailers Slam "Ridiculous" Duty on Green Lamps - BRUSSELS - Europe's top retailers urged the European Union to axe its "ridiculous" anti-dumping tariffs on Chinese-made energy-saving lightbulbs on Monday, saying they cost consumers 2 billion euros (US$3.2 billion) a year. (Reuters)

UK Moves Three Steps Closer to Green Energy Goals - LONDON - One of Europe's largest onshore wind farms has won Scottish planning approval and the world's largest offshore wind project now has two committed backers, boosting Britain's chances of reaching its ambitious green energy goals. (Reuters)

“Will they be told the truth?” - Most consumers probably accept without question that the quality measures required of healthcare providers really are measures of quality care. As we’ve repeatedly seen, however, those quality measures aren’t always grounded on the best quality scientific evidence. A doctor and provider under Hawaii’s largest health insurer wrote a tell-all letter in the Honolulu Advertiser that received little national notice, but she felt her patients and everyone deserved to know what goes on behind the scenes. Those screening tests and prescriptions being ordered in increasing numbers may be influenced by more than the best science. (Junkfood Science)

Pharmacists urged to 'tell the truth' about homeopathic remedies - Professor of complementary medicine says they should inform customers that the treatments are no more effective than sugar pills (The Guardian)

Good News on Saturated Fat - Should we be reconsidering the conventional wisdom on saturated fat? Yes, according to Gary Taubes’s interpretation of the new report in The New England Journal of Medicine on a two-year diet experiment in Israel. (John Tierney, New York Times)

Oops! Euro-watermelons making things worse, again: Researchers find key to saving the world's lakes - After completing one of the longest running experiments ever done on a lake, researchers from the University of Alberta, University of Minnesota and the Freshwater Institute, contend that nitrogen control, in which the European Union and many other jurisdictions around the world are investing millions of dollars, is not effective and in fact, may actually increase the problem of cultural eutrophication. (PNAS)

Barack Obama and the UN's drive for global governance - Senator Barack Obama has introduced a dangerous bill and it's on the fast track to Senate passage, probably because of his high profile position as the expected Democrat presidential nominee. Obama hasn't done much legislatively in his freshman Senate term, but this one is very telling about what we can expect from a President Obama.

The bill is the "Global Poverty Act" (S.2433) and is not just a compassionate bit of fluff that Obama dreamed up to help the poor of the world. This bill is directly tied to the United Nations and serves as little more than a shakedown of American taxpayers in a massive wealth redistribution scheme. In fact, if passed, The Global Poverty Act will provide the United Nations with 0.7% of the United States gross national product. Estimates are that it will add up to at least $845 billion of taxpayer money for welfare to third world countries, in addition to the $300 billion Americans spent for the same thing in 2006. (Tom DeWeese, ESR)

July 21, 2008

The shaming of American Physics - The intention at this point was to have a small celebration of the apparent return of The American Physical Society from the maw of the believers to the tradition of rational debate. It was occasioned by this announcement of a discussion, free of The Censorship, about the alarmist claims of the IPCC. Instead by insertion of an announcement in red lettering under the heading of an invited paper we have the following:

The following article has not undergone any scientific peer review. Its conclusions are in disagreement with the overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community. The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article's conclusions.

The first sentence is nothing more or less than a deliberate lie. The second is, to say the least, contentious; while the third is an outrageous example of ultra vires interference by a committee in the proper conduct of scientific debate.

In over forty years of experience of editorial boards, refereeing and adjudicating for learned societies around the world, I never witnessed such gross discourtesy to an invited contributor. That such a statement can be offered without an iota of reasoning or evidence is a sorry indication of what the politicisation of science has brought about. It is the substitution of the Papal Bull for reasoned consideration.

We must be grateful that we have the internet and specifically CCNet to ensure that such travesties do not go unmarked. (John Brignell, Number Watch)

Monckton responds: Statement by The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley (.pdf, published with permission) Includes reviewer's comments and response.

“Consensus” on Man-Made Warming Shattering - The “consensus” on man-made global warming may have received a mortal wound. (Dennis Avery, CFP)

Challenging the basis of Kyoto Protocol - Russian scientists deny that the Kyoto Protocol reflects a consensus view of the world scientific community.

As western nations step up pressure on India and China to curb the emission of greenhouse gases, Russian scientists reject the very idea that carbon dioxide may be responsible for global warming. (Vladimir Radyuhin, The Hindu)

Makin’ Up Climate Data… From Junk! - Everyone has heard the term, “creating something from thin air.” Now there is a new term, “creating climate data from junk.” (M4GW)

Recent Cooling and the Serious Data Integrity Issue - All the data sources have updated now for June. NOAA GHCN data was a clear outlier. NOAA called this the eighth warmest June on record for the globe in the 129 years since records began in 1880 with a positive anomaly of 0.5C (0.9F) for the month. The University of Alabama, Huntsville MSU satellite based global assessment reported the this June was the the 9th coldest in the 30 years of satellite record keeping (base period 1979-1998) with a value of -0.11C (-0.19F). The other NASA satellite source, RSS had June as the 13th coldest out of the last 30 years. Hadley came in today with their CRUV3 data update. They also were in disagreement with the satellite data sets with +0.316C, the 10th warmest June. However both the Hadley and MSU do show a downtrend since 2002 of 0.15 to 0.2C with a rather strong negative correlation (r = - 0.44 with Hadley) with CO2 which increased 3.5% over the period. (Joseph D’Aleo, CCM, AMS Fellow)

The Lawnmower Men - Al Gore blew into Washington on Thursday, warning that "our very way of life" is imperiled if the U.S. doesn't end "the carbon age" within 10 years. No one seriously believes such a goal is even remotely plausible. But if you want to know what he and his acolytes think this means in practice, the Environmental Protection Agency has just published the instruction manual. Get ready for the lawnmower inspector near you.

In a huge document released last Friday, the EPA lays out the thousands of carbon controls with which they'd like to shackle the whole economy. Central planning is too artful a term for the EPA's nanomanagement. Thankfully none of it has the force of law -- yet. However, the Bush Administration has done a public service by opening this window on new-wave green thinking like Mr. Gore's, and previewing what Democrats have in mind for next year. (Wall Street Journal)

Swindle film did not mislead - So there is a Great Global Warming Swindle, even if you hurt people in saying so:

BRITAIN’S Channel 4 misrepresented some of the world’s leading climate scientists in a controversial documentary that claimed global warming was a conspiracy and a fraud, Britain’s media regulator is set to find.

In a long-awaited judgement following a 15-month inquiry, the Office of Communications (Ofcom) is expected to censure the network over its treatment of some scientists in the program The Great Global Warming Swindle, which sparked outcry from environmentalists.

The documentary was shown in Australia on ABC TV.

Complaints about privacy and fairness from the British Government’s former chief scientist, Sir David King, and the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will be upheld on most counts. But it is believed that Channel 4 will still claim victory because the ultimate verdict on a separate complaint about accuracy, which contained 131 specific points and ran to 270 pages, will find that it did not breach the regulator’s broadcasting code and did not materially mislead viewers.
(Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun)

 Don't know what all the fuss is about? Get your copy and help at the same time!

Channel 4 censured for programme that said climate change was a fraud: Scientists' complaint on accuracy is rejected (The Times)

I'm not really clear on how Wunsch feels he was misrepresented, see, just that he took some stick from the advocacy camp and issued a "clarification". Interestingly this says the complaint by David King will be upheld. Perhaps his complaint should be with The Sindy since they, and specifically Geoffrey Lean, are the source of the quote said contentious, May 2, 2004 [em added]:

Why Antarctica will soon be the only place to live
Geoffrey Lean Environment Editor

Antarctica is likely to be the world's only habitable continent by the end of this century if global warming remains unchecked, the Government's chief scientist, Professor Sir David King, said last week.

He said that the Earth was entering the "first hot period" since 60 million years ago, when there was no ice on the planet and "the rest of the globe could not sustain human life". The shock warning - one of the starkest yet delivered by a top scientist or senior government figure - comes as ministers are deciding whether to weaken measures next week to cut the pollution that causes climate change, even though Tony Blair last week described the situation as "very, very critical indeed".

The Prime Minister - who was launching a new alliance of governments, businesses and pressure groups to tackle global warming - added that he could not think of "any bigger long-term question facing the world community".

Yet the Government is considering relaxing limits on emissions by industry under an EU scheme on Tuesday.

Sir David says that there is "plenty of evidence" to back up his warning. Levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere - the main "green- house gas" causing climate change - were already 50 per cent higher than at any time in the last 420,000 years. The last time they were at this level - 379 parts per million and rising - was 60 million years ago during a rapid period of global warming in the Palaeocene epoch, he said. Levels soared to 1,000 parts per million, causing a massive reduction of life on earth.

"No ice was left on earth. Antarctica was the best place for mammals to live, and the rest of the world would not sustain human life," he said

And Sir David warned that if the world did not curb its burning of fossil fuels "we will reach that level by the end of the century".

Copyright 2004 Independent Newspapers UK Limited
Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company. All rights Reserved.

Less than two weeks later King was prancing around claiming the beginning of The Day After Tomorrow "was particularly realistic - both scientifically and politically." (Never mind the weather overkill: scientists praise Hollywood's global warning, Paul Brown, Tim Radford and John Vidal, The Guardian, Thursday May 13, 2004)

Update: working my way through my weekend mailbox I see Tom Nelson extracted the Sindy article archive long before I did and expressed things much more succinctly, so, belated h/t Tom Nelson and everyone else who sent me the link.

Gore’s (Really) Inconvenient Timing – ‘Consensus’ On Man-Made Global Warming Collapses in 2008 - Former Vice-President Al Gore came to Washington on July 17, 2008, to deliver yet another speech warning of the “climate crisis.”

“The leading experts predict that we have less than 10 years to make dramatic changes in our global warming pollution lest we lose our ability to ever recover from this environmental crisis,” Gore stated. But the former Vice President, who has been warning of a 10-year “tipping point” for several years now, appears to be unaware that the United Nations already started the 10-year countdown -- in 1989! (EPW Blog)

Hilarious fiction: A Disappointing Truth - Al Gore gave a big speech about global warming last week. He was thunderous and prophetic. He said “the survival of the United States of America as we know it is at risk.” He implored the nation to stop burning dirty coal, gas and oil — in just 10 years. In a policy context, that’s like sending the nation to destroy the One Ring in the fires of Mount Doom.

So here’s a question: If the job is so huge and urgent, why is the ad campaign so pedestrian?

Mr. Gore is spending $300 million, a lot of it his own money, in the next three years to get the country moving on global warming. He has promised the biggest, most ambitious public-service advertising blitz anyone has ever seen.

So far it’s a cute green logo, the word “me” turned upside-down to “we.” It’s an earnest Web site. It’s Al Sharpton and Pat Robertson on a couch, joshing about saving the earth. It’s Nancy Pelosi and Newt Gingrich, joshing on a couch. I saw one very funny ad with Billy Crystal and David Letterman joshing on a couch. Too bad it was a parody.

Nobody said this job was going to be easy. How to get people worked up about a slow-motion global catastrophe, one without explosions, has vexed the best minds of this generation. But Mr. Gore himself has done more than anybody to put global warming on center stage, with just a PowerPoint presentation that became an Oscar-winning movie. So it’s vexing that his new campaign — so far, anyway — seems unlikely to break out of the pack of “green” advertising that, as The Times reported last week, is making consumers bored and skeptical.

Mr. Gore is not trying to cash in on worries about the environment with the kinds of ads that consumers see as smug and insincere. But that just makes it more important for them to have an impact. (Lawrence Downes, New York Times)

Where to start? Carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, has warmed the planet about as much as it can. We can see every day that it is not the most powerful kid on the global warming block because atmospheric carbon dioxide is measurably increasing (and so is N2O) while atmospheric temperatures are measurably not. Without dispute "something" more potent is overriding increasing carbon dioxide's undeniable (although declining) greenhouse effect. More importantly this "something" is demonstrating that modelers' much-touted "positive feedback mechanisms", if they exist at all, are too weak to assist increasing carbon dioxide to overcome said "something". The "climate emergency" so beloved of apocalyptic prophets simply fails to materialize, despite this being our, what? This is our third "just 10 years to act" on this particular "emergency", isn't it?

NOAA provides a graphic showing the estimated effect of current radiative forcing from CO2 expressed as change since1750. In case some readers have a little difficulty calculating the baseline and expectation for possible future effects from their formula we'll do here for you for a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide from a baseline year of 1750 (pre-Industrial Revolution): 5.35xLN(556/278) = 3.7. This means doubling atmospheric CO2 would add 3.7W/m2 radiative forcing and we've already seen 1.7W//m2 of that (leaving the potential for another 2W//m2). Current estimated net temperature change since 1750 is about +0.6 °C. So, even under the ridiculous assumption that changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide are completely responsible for change in temperature the potential remaining change from doubling CO2 is roughly 0.7 °C. We would need to double atmospheric CO2 again to over 1100ppmv from about 385ppmv now to get another ~1 °C temperature increment (absurdly assuming carbon dioxide is solely responsible). No evidence exists to suggest our carbon dioxide emissions can do so.

Downes claims Al isn't trying to cash in on worries about the environment. We beg to differ, Al has made a literal fortune exploiting exactly that.

Under the Moon: Gore’s Giant Limp for Mankind - Al Gore announced his strategy for powering the USA entirely from ‘renewable’ resources -a mixture of solar and wind - by a decade from now. (Are the sun and wind ‘renewable’? How?)

The ten-year time-span, and the ‘big project’ are borrowed from JF Kennedy’s speech announcing the plan to put a man on the moon. Gore makes no secret of it, indeed, he is overtly trying to capture the same spirit, and sense of historical moment by paraphrasing Kennedy.

But there exist many differences between Gore and Kennedy, and their speeches. (Climate Resistance)

Gore Says He Can Do More for Environment as Private Citizen - Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore said he can do more to fight global warming as a private citizen than he could working as a government official even if Barack Obama wins the presidency.

``My own best role is to try to bring about a sea change in public opinion,'' Gore said today on NBC's ``Meet the Press.'' ``Policy makers who know the right thing to do run up against a wall set up all around them by the lobbyists and the special interests,'' he said. (Bloomberg)

Translation: "Are you crazy? I'm making buckets of money now and some people actually like me!"

Jerry Brown's War on California Suburbs - In the 1960s, California Gov. Edmund Gerald "Pat" Brown laid the foundation for building modern, suburban California with massive new highway projects and one of the most significant public water projects in history. The resulting infrastructure gave us broad, low-density developments with room for millions of Californians to have a home with a backyard and two cars in the driveway.

Those were the good old days. Today, Pat Brown's son Jerry is waging war on the very communities his father helped make possible. Why? Global warming. (Wall Street Journal)

Role of Regional Climate Forcings On Antarctic Sea Ice Areal Extent

There is an interesting article in the publication “U.S.CLIVAR Variations” [the article is not yet online but should be soon], Fogt, Ryan L., David H. Bromwich, and Keith M. Hines, 2008: Recent ENSO and SAM Teleconnections for Antarctica. Variations, May 2008, Vol.6, No. 1, 4-7. Available from the U.S. CLIVAR Office
1717 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Suite 250, Washington, DC 20006, (202) 419-3471,

The article further demonstrates why a regional focus on climate change is imperative. A global average metric such as the global average surface temperature trend is almost useless in explaining climate. The Fogt et al article shows that Antarctic sea ice extent responses to regional circulation patterns. Climate change in other parts of the world (such as Arctic sea ice trends) must also be explained in terms of regional circulation pattern changes. For example, the Antarctic sea ice coverage today has been well above the long term average for this time of the year until recently (see), while the Arctic sea ice coverage today is well below average (see). (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Why Does NASA Oppose Satellites? A Modest Proposal For A Better Data Set - One of the ironies of climate science is that perhaps the most prominent opponent of satellite measurement of global temperature is James Hansen, head of ... wait for it ... the Goddard Institute for Space Studies at NASA! As odd as it may seem, while we have updated our technology for measuring atmospheric components like CO2, and have switched from surface measurement to satellites to monitor sea ice, Hansen and his crew at the space agency are fighting a rearguard action to defend surface temperature measurement against the intrusion of space technology. (Climate Skeptic)

Shifting of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation from its warm mode to cool mode assures global cooling for the next three decades. - Foreword: Don J. Easterbrook sent me this essay on Friday for publication here, but with the dustup over Monckton’s paper and the APS, I decided to hold off publishing it for a bit. For background, see Easterbrook’s web page here. - Anthony (Watts Up With That?)

Nutty Story of the Day: “Global Warming” is Killing the Penguins in Antarctica - You have to wonder how the press allows stories like these to get published without some basic fact checking. I’m reminded of the recent CBS News story about “resonance” and global warming causing more earthquakes. (Watts Up with That?)

Changes in the winds could have been the cause of an abrupt glacial climatic change - Spanish and German researchers have carried out a collaborative study that shows how during the last glacial period, small variations in the surface winds could have induced significant changes in the oceanic currents of the North Atlantic, and could even have played a role in the abrupt climate change that occurred at the time. (

Boy, does their arithmetic stink! Wetlands Could Unleash "Carbon Bomb" - Scientists - WASHINGTON - The world's wetlands, threatened by development, dehydration and climate change, could release a planet-warming "carbon bomb" if they are destroyed, ecological scientists said on Sunday.

Wetlands contain 771 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases, one-fifth of all the carbon on Earth and about the same amount of carbon as is now in the atmosphere, the scientists said before an international conference linking wetlands and global warming. (Reuters)

There are about 40,000 Petagrams (billion tonnes) of carbon in the oceans, at least another 10,000 locked up in fossil fuels, another couple of thousand in plants and soils and about 0.7 in the atmosphere. Wetlands at 0.77 then contain less than 1.5%, far short of "one-fifth of all the carbon on Earth". Next time maybe these guys should take off their shoes and socks, maybe they'll be able to count a bit further. "Ecological scientists"... Sheesh!

BBC On Bad Acid Trip - The merest sniff of an environmental problem can go straight to the heads of the soberest of science reporters and leave them mumbling jibberish about the imminent end of the world as we know it. (Climate Resistance)

Good quote: ESRI says Ireland cannot meet onerous EU emissions target - IRELAND CANNOT meet the onerous emissions reduction targets by 2020 set by the EU unless the most "lunatic" draconian measures are implemented, an Oireachtas committee heard yesterday. (Irish Times)

Sunday: Questioning the science of climate change - An Australian TV program (playlist, 3 parts, 22 minutes in total, click) Jennifer Marohasy is among the global warming infidels who are interviewed and she says a couple of wise things, too. (The Reference Frame)

Rudd gloomy on worldwide accord - AN international agreement on reducing greenhouse gas emissions will be "very, very difficult" to achieve, according to Kevin Rudd.

In an exclusive interview with The Weekend Australian, the Prime Minister gave a downbeat assessment of the chances of developed and developing countries bridging the policy gap to produce a workable climate change agreement.

He instead stressed the flexibility of the Australian plan and the need for Australia to move in broad concert with Western, developed nations.

"I approach this with absolute realism," Mr Rudd said. (The Australian)

K.Rudd approach things with realism? This we would be delighted to see, if somewhat shocked.

We wish! ETS faces delay if Coalition dithers - KEVIN Rudd faces the prospect of delaying the introduction of an emissions trading scheme until 2012 to secure the support of Coalition senators.

As the Prime Minister yesterday refused to rule out a double dissolution election on climate change if the Senate rejects his proposed legislation, he again challenged Liberal and National senators to offer bipartisan support for the scheme. (The Australian)

An election on throwing all our money at the phantom menace? After voters have been told a little of how much it'll cost them? Yes please! Now, anyone who wants to be elected to the Australian Parliament merely has to position themselves as not having a bar of climate change hysteria and/or legislation and they're in.

Holy smokescreen can't last for Rudd - DID the Government deliberately time the release of its Green Paper on emissions trading to coincide with the Pope's visit to Australia?

Almost certainly. It would be naive to think otherwise.

At the core of the scheme was a message of pain - higher gas and electricity prices, other prices rising across the economy, and plans to fully compensate only those at the bottom end of the income scale.

Ministers had been worried about how voters would react. They knew it would be a hard political sell.

But the celebrations surrounding World Youth Day and the Pope's activities in Sydney, to a significant extent, distracted attention from the bad news.

The Green Paper did not dominate headlines the way it would have done at any other time. (Laurie Oakes, Daily Telegraph)

Of course, Australia is not short of gibbering nitwits in the media: Climate won't wait, Mr Rudd - If ever our planet needed inspiring leadership, it is now, writes Christine Milne.

THE first of Nelson Mandela's eight lessons of leadership is that "Courage is not the absence of fear - it's inspiring others to move beyond it". If ever our planet needed inspiring leadership it is now, as we face the twin threats of climate change and peak oil. (Sydney Morning Herald)

Carbon play an act of belief - CANBERRA and the Catholic Church have had transformative shows of faith on display this week. World Youth Day in Sydney may look far more spectacular but the Rudd Government is professing its conviction to fight the evils of climate change with almost as much moral certitude.

The logical difficulty for the Government is that the apocalyptic warnings with which it starts every speech on the impact of global climate change are in contrast to Australia's relative ability to do much about it.

And that's even without Canberra's attempts to balance the doctrinal purity of its scheme with compromises to counter the political and economic risks.

It all means the gap between political rhetoric and reality is even wider than normal. (The Australian)

Actually carbon constraint is not an act of faith, merely blind stupidity.

Sorry, Mate: Australia Confronts the Cost of Cutting Carbon (Keith Johnson, WSJ)

Refiners pan emissions plan - THE $35 billion petrol-refining industry has warned that the emissions trading regime will jeopardise its long-term future, escalating the business backlash against the Rudd government scheme as its costs become clear.

The refining industry would be ineligible for compensation for tens of millions of dollars in carbon costs, and says this would lead to an investment freeze and could cause some refineries to close.

Caltex chief executive Des King told The Weekend Australian that, without compensation, some Australian refineries "will close and all will face huge extra costs that will limit any ability for future investment". (The Australian)

States to reap climate's GST bounty - WAYNE Swan's pledge to return "every cent" of money raised through the emissions trading scheme will not apply to a GST windfall to the states worth billions of dollars.

Despite Treasurer Wayne Swan's claims that the carbon pollution reduction scheme was "not a revenue raiser'', the GST would apply on permits sold and traded and on other goods and services, including electricity, whose prices increase as a result of scheme, The Australian reports.

Government sources confirmed yesterday this revenue was not included in Mr Swan's pledge to return "every cent'' raised from the permits because the revenue would go to the states.

Free permits offered by the Government to trade-exposed businesses should also be classed as income, according to the green paper, potentially delivering a $700million tax grab on heavy industry. (The Australian)

Canada's Ontario Joins US Carbon Initiative - OTTAWA - The province of Ontario, Canada's industrial heartland, will join the Western Climate Initiative, a planned US-based regional carbon credit trading pact, the province's premier, Dalton McGuinty, said on Friday.

Ontario is the fourth Canadian province, after British Columbia, Manitoba and Quebec, to sign up to the grouping, which includes California and six other US states. (Reuters)

'Rig' The Election - A day after House Democrats pretend to be in favor of drilling, Sen. Diane Feinstein calls offshore drilling a "distraction." Mark Sept. 30 on your calendar. It's the day Democrats have to put up or shut up. (IBD)

Do As They Say - Unwilling to allow any expansion of drilling in American territory, Democrats are instead focused on changing American lifestyles. It's consistent with the goals of the party that wants to run everyone's lives. (IBD)

McCain Embraces California Mileage Law - Detroit — In front of a roomful of 500 General Motors employees — of all places — John McCain paraded his radical Green credentials this morning. McCain embraced California’s lawsuit against the EPA demanding that states be allowed to set their own auto mileage standards. (Henry Payne, Planet Gore)

Thank You, Al! - Al Gore’s call to produce all of America’s electricity from “carbon-free sources” by 2018 flouts technological, economic, and political reality. (Marlo Lewis, Planet Gore)

Questions for the Goracle - John Tierney has three pointed questions for the former vice president: (Edward John Craig, Planet Gore)

Greenpeace hypocritical - mining co - MINING company Queensland Energy Resources (QER) has described as "hypocritical" Greenpeace's decision to send its ship Esperanza to tomorrow's protest against its proposed oil shale mine in north Queensland.

The 72m ship will arrive off Airlie Beach tomorrow as Greenpeace ramps up its protest over the proposed mine near wetlands and national parks adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef.

But QER director of corporate affairs Simon Eldridge said today it was hypocritical that Greenpeace was using its diesel-reliant "Soviet-era ship", to go to an area to protest against the production of diesel.

"They will be emitting CO2 as they go, but somehow they don't acknowledge the irony or hypocrisy of their actions," Mr Eldridge said.

"If Greenpeace is so strongly opposed to the production and use of diesel fuels, then it should at the very least change its entire fleet to be powered solely by solar, wind or hydrogen.

"It is very unlikely Greenpeace would elect to do that because the reality is that, for at least the foreseeable future, there are no viable alternative fuels for use in long-distance heavy transport vehicles." (The Australian)

The Good News About Energy - Despite the pessimistic headlines on energy, a beneficial long-term trend is underway called decarbonization. (Robert Bryce, The American)

First tidal power turbine gets plugged in - An underwater turbine that generates electricity from tidal streams was plugged into the UK's national grid today. It marks the first time a commercial-scale underwater turbine has fed power into the network and the start of a new source of renewable energy for the UK. (The Guardian)

Nuclear showdown: The cheapest option - Even without carbon taxes, companies around the world are prepared to invest in nuclear power, the Canadian Nuclear Association's Colin Hunt says. A response by Financial Post Editor Terence Corcoran follows. (Colin Hunt, Financial Post)

Nuclear showdown: Cheapest — except for the others - Objective nuclear viability studies invariably call for a carbon tax (Terence Corcoran, Financial Post)

Let's Have Some Love for Nuclear Power - All over the world, nuclear power is making a comeback. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has just commissioned eight new reactors, and says there's "no upper limit" to the number Britain will build in the future. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has challenged her country's program to phase out 17 nuclear reactors by 2020, saying it will be impossible to deal with climate change without them. China and India are building nuclear power plants; France and Russia, both of whom have embraced the technology, are fiercely competing to sell them the hardware.

And just last month John McCain called for the construction of 45 new reactors by 2030. Barack Obama is less enthusiastic about nuclear energy, but he seems to be moving toward tacit approval. (William Tucker, Wall Street Journal)

Emissions Hijacking - The mood at this week's air show in Farnborough, England, is less optimistic than in years past. Aerospace companies are still making deals, but the credit crunch, high fuel prices and the ever-weaker U.S. dollar loom as concerns.

All of which means the European Union's stubborn push to add airlines to its CO2 emissions-trading scheme couldn't come at a worse time. The European Parliament voted last week to require emissions permits starting in 2012 for all flights that land or take off in the EU -- regardless of the airline's nationality or how much of the trip takes place in European airspace. Member-state governments are expected to approve the measure soon.

There would never be a good time for Europe's unilateral move to regulate other nations' airlines, which comes over the objections of nearly every other country on the planet as well as the U.N. body for civil aviation. So much for Europe's commitment to multilateralism. (WSJE)

Bear Necessities? - The rush to regulate the securities industry ignores the lessons of history and might plant the seeds of disaster. (Peter J. Wallison, The American)

IATA chief calls for abandoning environment taxes - The International Air Transport Association (IATA), an industry group representing 230 airlines, has called on governments to abandon punitive environment taxes and instead support global environment solutions that will actually reduce aviation's two per cent of global carbon emissions. (Press Trust of India)

Purdue committee completes research misconduct investigation - Purdue University on Friday (July 18) announced that an investigative committee with members from five institutions has concluded that two allegations against Rusi Taleyarkhan, a professor of nuclear engineering, constituted research misconduct. (Purdue News Service)

Oh my... Black holes are politically incorrect - Benjamin has brought my attention to a hilarious story. (The Reference Frame)

U.S. Is Alone in Rejecting All Evidence if Police Err - No other country goes as far as the U.S. in excluding evidence from trials because of official misconduct. (New York Times)

Good Drugs, Bad Drugs - The global health community must strengthen its commitment to protect patients from poor-quality medicines. (Roger Bate, The American)

Round eleventy-seven in the diet wars - Here we go again in the battle of the diets. Another weight loss study was published this week. This one, partly funded by Atkins Research Foundation, pitted a low-fat diet against a Mediterranean diet against an Atkins-like diet. The news has either declared Atkins the winner, or that they all worked, or that they all failed. (Junkfood Science)

Junk food diet fuels epidemic of pet obesity - Calls for owners to face prosecution for cruelty as number of overweight animals hits half a million (The Observer)

The final verdict on coffee - TORONTO -- If contradicting research has you wondering if coffee is healthy or harmful, the answer is simple: it depends.

A recent study showed a benefit from drinking java on a population level. But it's difficult to make individual recommendations for safe coffee consumption, said Dr. Ahmed El-Sohemy, a University of Toronto associate professor funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research who has studied caffeine and health.

El-Sohemy's research has showed that coffee could either lower or raise a person's risk of heart attack. That's because safe daily coffee intake is going to vary with the ability to process caffeine -- and that changes from person to person. There's no easy way to tell how effectively your body deals with caffeine, and therefore how much of it is safe for you to drink, he said. (Reuters)

Home radon may have tie to childhood leukemia - NEW YORK - Children who live in homes with high radon levels may be at increased risk for acute lymphoblastic leukemia during childhood, but not other childhood cancers, research from Denmark suggests.

Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a cancer of infection-fighting white blood cells. Outside of fetal exposure to X-rays and genetic conditions, the causes or risk factors associated with childhood ALL are poorly understood.

Higher rates of childhood cancer, and particularly leukemia, have been observed in geographic regions with higher levels of radon -- a natural radioactive gas that emanates from soils and can concentrate inside houses. Yet, studies assessing links between breathing radon gas and the risk for childhood cancer have yielded mixed results. (Reuters Health)

World warned over killer flu pandemic - The world is failing to guard against the inevitable spread of a devastating flu pandemic which could kill 50 million people and wreak massive disruption around the globe, the Government has warned. (The Independent)

In Praise of Unsustainability - We’ve mentioned before that everything that humans have ever done has been unsustainable. And not in a bad way. (Climate Resistance)

For being ignored or for failing to reduce energy use? Earth Hour wins top environmental award - EARTH HOUR, the campaign that encouraged people to turn off their lights for an hour to raise awareness about climate change, has won a national environmental award.

The venture of conservation group WWF, Fairfax Media, publisher of The Sun-Herald, and Leo Burnett for the City of Sydney won the gold Banksia Award at a ceremony in Melbourne on Friday night. (Sydney Morning Herald)

See Lights Off, Flights On for the Ad men's prize. (Tim Blair)

Monbiot’s metamorphosis - Today, environmentalists like Guardian columnist George Monbiot are adding a gloss of ‘scientific truth’ to elite prejudices and fears. (Brendan O’Neill, sp!ked)

UW arson suspect gets five years - A federal judge sentenced a Seattle woman to five years in prison Friday and demanded she repay more than $7 million for her role in the 2001 ecoterror arson of the University of Washington's Center for Urban Horticulture. (Associated Press)

Delta diversion threat to salmon, judge rules - A federal judge in Fresno affirmed Friday that water diversions in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta have jeopardized the existence of California's beleaguered salmon.

It was the latest in a string of rulings ordering state and federal regulators to fix a water system that supplies millions of Californians with water but is all but dysfunctional when it comes to protecting fisheries and the environment. (SF Chronicle)

Beaver 'blight' is a warning to UK - South American forests are being ravaged as the animals swarm north, raising concerns about their reintroduction to Britain (The Observer)

Cows and Sheep May Safely Graze? - As a youngster in a post war London I was brought up on lamb and anchor butter from New Zealand.

My first dabble into TV commercials was with WOOLMARK NZ, in what became a successful attempt to slow down the ingress of synthetic fibre into the carpet market. I still meet sheep farmers around the world who greet me their thanks and a pint of beer.

I still delight in your butter and lamb which I can buy in my local supermarket, the latter at half the price of the local product sold in our village butchers shop.

What a strange world we live in now bombarded with the rhetoric of food miles let alone tourist miles.

Hence I beg leave to put in this plea for the good husbandry of these two ruminants. (Prof. David Bellamy, Carbon Sense Coalition)

US food groups plan hefty price rises - US food companies are preparing another round of hefty price increases as soaring commodity costs force them to pass on rises to consumers. (Financial Times)

Mideast Facing Choice Between Crops and Water - CAIRO — Global food shortages have placed the Middle East and North Africa in a quandary, as they are forced to choose between growing more crops to feed an expanding population or preserving their already scant supply of water.

For decades nations in this region have drained aquifers, sucked the salt from seawater and diverted the mighty Nile to make the deserts bloom. But those projects were so costly and used so much water that it remained far more practical to import food than to produce it. Today, some countries import 90 percent or more of their staples.

Now, the worldwide food crisis is making many countries in this politically volatile region rethink that math. (New York Times)

Burkina Launches Monsanto GMO Cotton to Boost Crop - OUAGADOUGOU - Cotton farmers in Burkina Faso will soon be planting genetically modified seeds that could boost output and cut costs after the government became the first in West Africa to approve GMO cotton for general use this week. (Reuters)

July 18, 2008

DEVELOPMENT: JUNKMAN NOTES APS HYPOCRISY! - While the APS wants to stand-by the decision of its governing body -- not its membership -- on global warming, it should be noted that when we tried to purchase the APS list to advertise the availability of "The Great Global Warming Swindle" DVD, the APS refused saying that global warming was too political a topic for its membership.

So the APS leadership thinks its OK for it to set a public policy position for the organization, which represents U.S. physicists, but it's not OK to provide those physicists with information on that position. If global warming is such a scientific no-brainer, what is the APS leadership worried about?


DEVELOPMENT: JUNKMAN OFFERS TO BUY DISSED APS PUB! - Below is the text of the letter sent by the Junkman to the president of the APS:

July 18, 2008

Arthur Bienenstock
American Physical Society

Dear Dr. Bienenstock,

I am writing to inquire about purchasing the newsletter Physics & Society from APS. I very much appreciate the difficult position in which the newsletter has recently placed APS.

The newsletter wants to conduct a public scientific debate on global warming, while the APS' seems to not be able to run away fast enough screaming, "The debate is over! No debate allowed!"

I would like to relieve you of the burden of this intolerable nuisance publication. What nerve... imagine wanting to debate science! You wouldn't want to risk your reputation with that.

Please let me know what the price is.

Finally, to purge APS of the undesirables who are out of lockstep with the organization's position on global warming, you may want to compare your membership list against the 31,000+ scientists who signed the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine's petition rejecting global warming alarmism. (See

Maybe you could conduct your own Nacht der langen Messer.


Steven J. Milloy

DEVELOPMENT: APS RUNS FOR COVER! APS Position Remains Unchanged - In an apparent effort to calm vocal alarmist members and to alleviate pressure from climate alarmists, the APS seems to be distancing itself from a decision to sponsor debate on global warming. Below is its statement.

The American Physical Society reaffirms the following position on climate change, adopted by its governing body, the APS Council, on November 18, 2007:

"Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate."

An article at odds with this statement recently appeared in an online newsletter of the APS Forum on Physics and Society, one of 39 units of APS. The header of this newsletter carries the statement that "Opinions expressed are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the APS or of the Forum." This newsletter is not a journal of the APS and it is not peer reviewed.

HUGE: APS ENDS CONSENSUS MYTH! American Physical Society to launch debate on CO2 and climate - Below is the statement by the editor of Physics & Society, a newsletter of the American Physical Society, the professional society for U.S. Physicists. DEVELOPMENT: APS Runs away! This story has gotten so hot as of Friday morning for the APS that it was forced to reassure the alarmists in its membership that its November 2007 statement in support of global warming alarmism is still the APS' official policy. To wit:


" announces that the major professional society for U.S. physicists has declared that there is no scientific consensus that humans are causing global warming. The American Physical Society announced in the July issue of its journal Physics & Society that it would begin on its pages a debate on the central issue of the global warming controversy -- that is, does manmade CO2 drive global climate. "This is the death knell for the falsehood spread by Al Gore and other global warming alarmists that there is any sort of consensus of scientists supporting the notion of catastrophic manmade global warming," said publisher, Steve Milloy. "We are elated that we survived to see the truth emerge and that we helped bring this sea change about," added Milloy.


"With this issue of Physics & Society, we kick off a debate concerning one of the main conclusions of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN body which, together with Al Gore, recently won the Nobel Prize for its work concerning climate change research. There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for the global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution. [Emphasis added] Since the correctness or fallacy of that conclusion has immense implications for public policy and for the future of the biosphere, we thought it appropriate to present a debate within the pages of P&S concerning that conclusion. This editor (JJM) invited several people to contribute articles that were either pro or con. Christopher Monckton responded with this issue's article that argues against the correctness of the IPCC conclusion, and a pair from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, David Hafemeister and Peter Schwartz, responded with this issue's article in favor of the IPCC conclusion. We, the editors of P&S, invite reasoned rebuttals from the authors as well as further contributions from the physics community. Please contact me ( if you wish to jump into this fray with comments or articles that are scientific in nature. However, we will not publish articles that are political or polemical in nature. Stick to the science! (JJM)

"Whether or not human produced carbon dioxide is a major cause of impending climate change (as is being debated in the two articles of this issue), the issue of energy "production" by our Earth-bound societies must be faced. Fossil fuel supplies may become unavailable in this century -- or the next -- but in a finite system, obeying the laws of thermodynamics, non-fossil energy sources will have to become available to mankind, sooner or later (within the foreseeable lifetime of our planet). One major energy resource, being much touted again, is that of the fissioning nucleus. Nuclear power faces three major drawbacks in the public eye: the possibilities of devastating accidents; the possibility of "proliferation" -- the diversion of energy resources and technology into weaponry; the problem of protecting present and future generations from "nuclear ashes" -- the long-lived radioactive byproducts of power generation by nuclear fission. For the most part, our society has "stuck its head in the sand" regarding these issues, but we have spent a great deal of money exploring one possible means of dealing with the third problem -- burying nuclear wastes deep underground (out of site, ergo out of mind). As the News item in this issue summarizes, the Federal government, after the expenditure of billions of dollars, seems to be ready to start sending long-lived wastes to be buried in Nevada. Many people there object -- "not in my backyard"! As physicists interested in the impact of physics on society (and the converse), we are obligated to participate intensely in the public debate on this problem of waste disposal as well as the other two. The final resolutions will have to be political but hopefully they will be well informed by knowledge of the physical possibilities as well as constraints. For example, I am unaware of any public discussion about the practical possibilities of decreasing the amount of long-lived nuclear ashes via the use of fast neutron fission reactors for power generation. I hope to see much more discussion of these issues in the future "pages" of this journal. (I put quotation marks about the word �pages� since it now appears that we may no longer be communicating with you via the customary paper pages; what word(s) should we use?) We know that many of our readers are well informed on these topics and hope that they will share their physical insights with the rest of us -- please submit articles, commentaries, letters, and enjoy the summer -- whether its warmth is in line with past trends or represents a new climate. (AMS)

Conservation Nation? - President Bush almost got it right this week when he declined to call on Americans to conserve energy. Sadly, he still seems to think that conservation is a win-win proposition. Worse, so do both major presidential candidates. (Steven Milloy,

Evidence doesn't bare out alarmist claims of global warming - THESE are the seven graphs that should make the Rudd Government feel sick.

These are the seven graphs that should make you ask: What? Has global warming now stopped?

Look for yourself. They show that the world hasn't warmed for a decade, and has even cooled for several years.

See for yourself: Click here to view the graphs in detail (pdf)

Sea ice now isn't melting, but spreading. The seas have not just stopped rising, but started to fall.

Nor is the weather getting wilder. Cyclones, as well as tornadoes and hurricanes, aren't increasing and the rain in Australia hasn't stopped falling.

What's more, the slight warming we saw over the century until 1998 still makes the world no hotter today than it was 1000 years ago.

In fact, it's even a bit cooler. So, dude, where's my global warming? (Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun)

Publication Of Hypotheses: An Example Of The Misuse of Science - There is a clear example to appear in the AGU publication Geophysical Research Letters of the use of the scientific publication process to present multi-decadal regional model forecasts as skillful results to give to policymakers [thanks to Hans Erren for alerting us to this paper!]. This presentation of a forecast, which is just a hypothesis (e.g. see) illustrates the abuse of the scientific method. They do not even include all of the human climate forcings (e.g. see).

Yet the article was still accepted by the journal! Having served as Chief Editor of two major professional journals (the Monthly Weather Review and the Journal of Atmospheric Sciences), I am aware of what constitutes a valid scientific contribution. This paper, however, is an embarrassment to the science community. There is no way to test their conclusions, yet it will be used by some policymakers to promote their particular perspective on the climate change subject. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Audio: Lord Monckton interviewed by Jon McComb (CKNW 98 in Vancouver, BC) on the American Physical Society (APS) global warming debate. Select July 17, 3 PM here. Monckton interview commences about 35:30.

Spencer, R.W., and W.D. Braswell, 2008: Feedback vs. Chaotic Radiative Forcing: “Smoking Gun” Evidence for an Insensitive Climate System? - Dr. Roy Spencer from The University of Alabama at Huntsville presented a special seminar at CU Boulder in the CIRES Auditorium today [Thursday, July 17th.] The pdf of his talk is available below.

Spencer, R.W., and W.D. Braswell, 2008: Feedback vs. Chaotic Radiative Forcing: “Smoking Gun” Evidence for an Insensitive Climate System?

There were about 40-50 attendees at the seminar where he presented an effective and persuasive demonstration of that the IPCC models significantly overstated climate sensitivity to human climate forcings. He also showed how circulation features such as ENSO and the PDO can result in multi-year variations in the global surface temperatures. Climate Science will report on this further when Dr. Spencer publishes this very important research. Unfortunately, no one was present from the NCAR GCM modeling group [although his seminar was widely advertised]. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

The EU's Carbon Trading Scheme: Killing Jobs to Save the Climate - The price of European emission permits is rising so rapidly that German companies are threatening to leave the country. Thousands of jobs could be lost. And the environment may, in the end, be no better off.

They sat silently through two lectures, but then they couldn't control their anger any longer. The civil servants from the Environment Ministry, the Environment Agency and the German Emissions Trading Authority made it sound easy for industry to take up carbon trading. It was just too much for the managers to tolerate.

"If that's the shape the trading will take, we will simply move our cement operation to Ukraine," a cement factory manager shouted into the lecture hall. "Then there won't be any trading here, nothing will be produced here anymore -- the lights will simply go out here."

The businessmen's anger surprised the emissions-allowance trading experts. They had invited industry representatives to a relaxed forum at the Environment Ministry's office in Bonn. They wanted to present international developments in the carbon trading market. However, the mood in the German business world has soured -- managers no longer have the stomach for academic lectures. The reason is that emissions allowances are already burdening some companies that require a lot of energy for production purposes. (Der Spiegel)

What's the point of a cure if the patient may not be sick? - WE NOW have Professor Jeffrey Sachs, economics adviser to the UN Secretary-General, and Professor Ross Garnaut, economics adviser to our Prime Minister, disagreeing over what form Australia's response to global warming should take (The Age, 15/7).

Whichever course is adopted, there is agreement that Australia's economy will suffer through a loss of its natural comparative advantage from access to cheap fossil fuels.

When doctors differ over the cure, it is time to get a new diagnosis. This is especially so if the nature and severity of the disease are poorly understood and if either recommended cure is going to reduce wellness significantly, or even leave the patient a cripple. (William Kininmonth, The Age)

Fabricating Temperatures on the DEW Line - Today I received an email that contained some startling revelations about the Weather Stations that were put in place on the DEW Line, a network of cold war era radar monitoring stations in Canada and Alaska, that have now been abandoned. It makes for interesting reading. I won’t reveal the name of the sender just yet, but I don’t doubt the accuracy of the report. (Watts Up with That?)

Eye-roller: Warming Is Major Threat To Humans, EPA Warns - Climate change will pose "substantial" threats to human health in the coming decades, the Environmental Protection Agency said yesterday -- issuing its warnings about heat waves, hurricanes and pathogens just days after the agency declined to regulate the pollutants blamed for warming. (David A. Fahrenthold and Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post)

Always assuming model-generated fantasies contain even a fragment of realistic climate expectations (although there's not the slightest reason to suspect that is so). Stupid game...

Just knew Seth couldn't resist this one: Warming health report: Poor, elderly to hurt most - WASHINGTON — Global warming will affect the health and welfare of every American, but the poor, elderly, and children will suffer the most, according to a new White House science report released Thursday. (AP)

Meanwhile, the Harvard School of Public Health derived mortality RR 1.02 for each 10 degree temperature increase -- at which rate it only has to warm 350 degrees to double mortality risk and an increase of just 550 degrees will triple it! (no calls or e-mails please, we know those are ridiculous conclusions but that happens when random results are misrepresented as meaningful, then extrapolated to meet the absurdities of climate model output)

A Libertarian? Really? Barr praises Gore’s work on climate change - Libertarian presidential candidate Bob Barr praised Al Gore on Thursday for his commitment to addressing climate change and said he has met with the former vice president several times to discuss possible solutions. (The Hill) | Statement of Bob Barr After Vice President Al Gore's 'We' Campaign (Fox Business)

Time To Focus On The Conservatives - With my return to posting, I sense a new, yet real, opportunity for all of us in the UK who argue that ‘global warming’ - as distinct from climate change - is the dangerous nonsense of the age to begin to redirect British politics on this issue. (Global Warming Politics)

Economics Trumps Environment at G8 - "It is the economy, stupid!" The economic and political concerns dampened the desire of world leaders at the Group of Eight (G-8) summit in Japan to ride the hot air balloon of climate change. That's no surprise. In any contest between a present crisis and future threat, the present always wins. The G-8 leaders are hardcore politicians and recognize that in hard times, politicians must not get carried away by the future. This explains why they agreed to a future goal: 50% reduction in carbon emission by 2050, without any signposts towards that goal for the present. (Barun Mitra, Mint)

Liability issue raised over carbon capture - The Alberta government is considering a formula to share future legal liability for stored carbon with industry as it moves forward with a $2-billion carbon capture and sequestration program. (Calgary Herald)

Govt rushing emissions scheme: Turnbull - The federal opposition says it will examine legislation setting up an emissions trading scheme with "great care".

The Rudd government is seeking to put pressure on the opposition to support the scheme - due to begin operation in July 2010 - and to capitalise on the coalition's mixed messages on climate change.

Any legislation will need the support of the opposition or, failing that, the combined backing of five Greens senators, Family First's Steve Fielding and independent Nick Xenophon.

Opposition treasury spokesman Malcolm Turnbull says the government is playing short-term opportunistic politics. (AAP)

Scam of the century - MORE than $60 billion in planned LNG investments are likely to be shelved because the Rudd Government’s emissions trading scheme is “backwards” and penalises exports of the clean gas, according to Woodside Petroleum chief Don Voelte.

Asked what he intended to do about the problem, Mr Voelte said: “We have booked a lot of plane tickets to Canberra.”

Good luck - it’s always hard to get zealots to see reason. (Kev Gillet)

Sun Could Cause 15% To 20% Of Effects Of Climate Change, Researcher Says - Global warming is mainly caused by greenhouse gas emissions resulting from human activities; however, current climatic variations may be affected “around 15% or 20%” by solar activity, according to Manuel Vázquez, a researcher from the Canary Islands’ Astrophysics Institute (IAC) who spoke at the Sun and Climate Change conference, organised as part of the El Escorial summer courses by Madrid's Complutense University. (ScienceDaily)

Here's some sad news, guys, the sun is the source of Earth's warmth, period.

Should we move species to save them? - WASHINGTON — With climate change increasingly threatening the survival of plants and animals, scientists say it may become necessary to move some species to save them. Dubbed assisted colonization or assisted migration, the idea is to decide how severe the threat is to various species, and if they need help to deal with it.

"When I first brought up this idea some 10 years ago in conservation meetings, most people were horrified," said Camille Parmesan, a biology professor at the University of Texas.

"But now, as the reality of global warming sinks in, and species are already becoming endangered and even going extinct because of climate change, I'm seeing a new willingness in the conservation community to at least talk about the possibility of helping out species by moving them around," she said. Parmesan discusses the idea in Friday's edition of the journal Science.

It's an idea that makes conservation biologists nervous. (AP)

Not long ago such dislocated critters were known as 'ferals' and these same whakos were full on for exterminating them....

Lionfish Decimating Other Tropical Fish Populations, Threaten Coral Reefs - The invasion of predatory lionfish in the Caribbean region poses yet another major threat there to coral reef ecosystems – a new study has found that within a short period after the entry of lionfish into an area, the survival of other reef fishes is slashed by about 80 percent. (OSU)

No smoking hot spot - I DEVOTED six years to carbon accounting, building models for the Australian Greenhouse Office. I am the rocket scientist who wrote the carbon accounting model (FullCAM) that measures Australia's compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, in the land use change and forestry sector.

FullCAM models carbon flows in plants, mulch, debris, soils and agricultural products, using inputs such as climate data, plant physiology and satellite data. I've been following the global warming debate closely for years.

When I started that job in 1999 the evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming seemed pretty good: CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the old ice core data, no other suspects.

The evidence was not conclusive, but why wait until we were certain when it appeared we needed to act quickly? Soon government and the scientific community were working together and lots of science research jobs were created. We scientists had political support, the ear of government, big budgets, and we felt fairly important and useful (well, I did anyway). It was great. We were working to save the planet.

But since 1999 new evidence has seriously weakened the case that carbon emissions are the main cause of global warming, and by 2007 the evidence was pretty conclusive that carbon played only a minor role and was not the main cause of the recent global warming. As Lord Keynes famously said, "When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?" (David Evans, The Australian)

Our roles in mission impossible - DEEP in the bowels of the Treasury, a team of harried bureaucrats are attempting a mission impossible - to gauge accurately the impact of Rudd's carbon trading scheme. By all accounts, it ain't going smoothly. Canberra is abuzz with speculation that Treasury is finding this modelling exercise mighty tough, hence the delay in the Government releasing must-have costings. So as business, green groups and climate sceptics examine the Government's green paper on emissions trading, bear this in mind. No one in this vast land really knows what impact carbon trading will have - on the economy, families, business and investment. We are all operating in the dark. (Herald Sun)

Actually we know the two things we need to know: it will cost and it won't do anything good for people or the environment.

Scientists demonstrate the sharpest measurement of ice crystals in clouds - Scientists have created an instrument designed to help determine the shapes and sizes of tiny ice crystals typical of those found in high-altitude clouds, down to the micron level (comparable to the tiniest cells in the human body), according to a new study in Optics Letters, a journal published by the Optical Society. The data produced using this instrument likely will help improve computer models used to predict climate change. (Optical Society of America)

How many more ways can they find to ring alarm bells from the trivial anomaly of Antarctic Peninsula warming (which isn't even within the Antarctic Circle)? Iceberg Scour Affects Biodiversity - Antarctic worms, sea spiders, urchins and other marine creatures living in near-shore shallow habitats are regularly pounded by icebergs. New data suggests this environment along the Antarctic Peninsula is going to get hit more frequently. This is due to an increase in the number of icebergs scouring the seabed as a result of shrinking winter sea ice. The results are published this week in the journal Science. (BAS)

Oh dear! They've let him out, again! Gore asks U.S. to abandon fossil fuels - WASHINGTON: Al Gore, who shared the Nobel Peace Prize for his effort against global warming, said Thursday that Americans should rely on the sun, winds and other environmentally friendly sources of electricity, or risk their national security as well as their creature comforts.

"The survival of the United States of America as we know it is at risk," Gore said in a speech during an energy conference in Washington. "The future of human civilization is at stake. (David Stout, IHT)

Gore's Hypocrisy Exposed in New Video: His Entourage's Lincoln Town Car Outside Global Warming Speech Idles w/ AC Cranking for 20 Minutes! - We're back from Al Gore's big global warming speech, and boy did we have a great time! We had a dedicated band of taxpayer advocates out in force, pointing out the high economic cost of global warming alarmism - starting with $8 a gallon gasoline.

Of course, we saw plenty of hypocrisy -- especially the fact that Gore didn't ride his bike or take public transportation to the event. He didn't even take his Prius! Instead, he brought a fleet of two Lincoln Town Cars and a Chevy Suburban SUV! Even worse, the driver of the Town Car that eventually whisked away Gore's wife and daughter left the engine idling and the AC cranking for 20 minutes before they finally left!

Check it out in our video from the scene: (Ed Frank, Americans for Prosperity)

Voinovich Finds Gore's Energy Speech 'Ridiculous' (The Hill)

Punxsutawney Al - Greenhouse Gashog (American Dream News)

Inconvenient Al - The world's leading crusader on climate change is said to be making some fellow Democrats nervous. With gasoline north of $4 a gallon, it's no surprise. (IBD)

For Pelosi, a Fight Against Offshore Drilling - The House speaker is not budging in her opposition to offshore oil drilling, despite increasing pressure from Republicans and anxiety among her own Democratic colleagues. (New York Times)

Clearly not pro-people and, last we heard, voters are people too.

Gore Urges Congress to Maintain Ban on Offshore Drilling - WASHINGTON -- Former Vice President Al Gore urged Congress not to overturn a federal ban on offshore drilling and complained that lawmakers are "being stampeded by lobbyists for special interests" eager to lift the moratorium. (Wall Street Journal)

Democrats Should Let Us Drill - Now that an executive branch ban on offshore oil exploration has been lifted, the time has come for Democrats in Washington to lift their own ban on increased domestic supply. Americans are demanding that Congress do something about record-high gas prices. They recognize that prices will not go down unless supplies go up. And they also know that the only thing now standing in the way of more domestic supply is the Democratic refusal to allow it. (Wall Street Journal)

Drilling in the Offshore: Unleashing the oil companies. - After trading at a record high of $147 a barrel Friday, the price of oil saw its largest one-day drop since the 2003 beginning of the Iraq war on Tuesday, falling $6.44 a barrel. Wednesday, it fell another $3.71, to $135.03, and at one point was trading as low as $132.

So what happened? As is usually the case with markets, a variety of factors caused this dramatic drop. According to the Associated Press, the Energy Information Administration announced that U.S. crude-oil supplies rose by 3 million barrels; beleaguered banks have been selling off valuable energy contracts to pay for other debts; and there’s even some speculation that computer programs used by Wall Street may create a “cascading effect” once prices start to drop.

But bizarrely, the AP didn’t mention that on Monday — again, the day of the single biggest one-day drop in oil prices in five years — President Bush removed the executive order imposing a moratorium on offshore drilling in the United States.

To think that this dramatic and unexpected move by the Bush administration didn’t have a significant effect on oil prices is folly. Even Democrats admit that relatively small margins in oil production could have a huge impact on prices. (Mark Hemingway, NRO)

Squeezing Oil From a Stone - The nation's frantic search for crude-oil sources is leading to one of the oldest, richest and most-elusive prizes in the petroleum industry: oil shale.

The U.S. has the largest known reserves of the coal-like rock, 80% of which lie beneath federal lands. By some estimates, U.S. oil-shale reserves could yield 800 billion barrels of oil, triple the current proven reserves of Saudi Arabia.

But tapping that potential requires heating rocks buried deep beneath the earth to hundreds of degrees Fahrenheit. Oil companies are racing to find ways to do so economically, but their solutions are years away from commercial use.

That means oil shale is like many other potential solutions to the nation's energy woes: a resource of staggering potential that is a decade too far. Oil beneath the Alaskan wilderness or the California coast could add billions of barrels to U.S. production but will take years to access. Wind power is contributing to the power grid in a handful of areas, but technical and logistical hurdles must be overcome before it can play more than a bit part is the broader energy picture. Next-generation nuclear plants, cellulosic ethanol, solar power and other technologies all face similar challenges. (Wall Street Journal)

Power Authority stops $1.6 billion plans for advanced coal plant at Tonawanda's Huntley Station - The Huntley Station in the Town of Tonawanda won't be getting a $1.6 billion advanced coal power plant.

The New York Power Authority today said the proposed project was too costly, even with hefty taxpayer subsidies, to make the electricity it would have produced affordable. (Buffalo News)

PM's carbon plan a $60bn threat to LNG - MORE than $60 billion in planned LNG investments are likely to be shelved because the Rudd Government's emissions trading scheme is "backwards" and penalises exports of the clean gas, according to Woodside Petroleum chief Don Voelte.

Mr Voelte told The Australian the carbon pollution reduction scheme, unveiled by the Government on Wednesday, would make it impossible for two $30billion West Australian offshore LNG projects to go ahead.

"This emissions trading scheme will knock planned projects with relatively high CO2 emissions right off the block - you can start with (Chevron's) Gorgon (project) and (Woodside's) Browse (project) and keep on going," he said.

Mr Voelte said the $15 billion LNG export industry was unlikely to qualify for any free permits under the Government's compensation formula for trade-exposed industries, in part because of efforts the industry had already undertaken to reduce its carbon emissions.

He said this outcome was "backwards" because LNG was part of the global solution to climate change, and replaced energy sources at least four times dirtier in the countries to which it was sold. (The Australian)

Ecuador, Venezuela agree to build biggest oil refinery - Rafael Correa, the Ecuadorian president, and Hugo Chavez, his Venezuelan counterpart, have entered into an agreement to build the biggest oil refinery on South America's Pacific coast. (Mercopress)

Biofuels as Global Warming Policy: All Pain and No Gain - The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) today released an Economic Assessment of Biofuel Support Policies. Several findings should be of interest to Planet Gore readers. (Marlo Lewis, Planet Gore)

Up to their necks in it - Despite good laws and even better intentions, India causes as much pollution as any rapidly industrialising poor country (The Economist)

Until the meteor strikes... - Hopefully, everyone's heard the news by now that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a statement today removing all warnings about the safety of tomatoes. While they had cleared virtually every tomato sold in the country last month, few consumers were getting that news.

All varieties of tomatoes are safe to eat. There is no reason to avoid tomatoes or to fear that tomatoes on the market are contaminated with Salmonella Saintpaul, said the FDA. (Junkfood Science)

No support for finger pointing teens - Teens are different from little kids. Little kids are little bees of nonstop activity. The teen years are spent focused more towards studies, relationships, and less physically active pursuits, especially among girls. While this would seem a no-brainer, it’s been reported this week as a crisis, requiring immediate action on a major public health scale.

A new study is said to have found that teens are sluggish. According to a University of California San Diego press release, “the increase in childhood obesity” may be partly due to this drop in physical activity as kids age. “People don't recognize this as the crisis that it is,” said the lead author. (Junkfood Science)

July 17, 2008

The Courage to do Nothing? Good Lord!

Excerpts from “Apocalypse? No!” [DVD available through and]

Global Warming Skeptic, Lord Christopher Monckton, Third Viscount of Brenchley, has published an article in Physics & Society, titled “Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered” in which he exposes step-by-step the incredibly sloppy methodology used by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) to support its case for Anthropogenic Global Warming. (Prodos)

Get your copy of this important DVD and help at the same time!

Google Trends (US and UK) illustrates the public's fading interest in global warming (Tom Nelson)

Interesting, with all the hype over Al's Apple Keynote™ presentation made into a schlockumentary and released through cinemas and on DVD I'd have expected to see an increase in searches while Google shows an immediate decline at regional general release dates, followed by a climb to peak in the first half of 2007 (that much is understandable with the volume of hysterical media coverage). Peak interest appears to be about $65/Barrel composite refiner crude oil cost, after which interest in gorebull warming foundered despite heroic efforts by activists to revive it. Interesting too that search volume declines so much in the Northern Hemisphere summer, when activists work so hard to associate seasonal hot weather with enhanced greenhouse. Good catch by Tom Nelson.

D'oh! Too Many Atmospheric Scientists . . . Surprise, Surprise - In the current issue of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society John Knox concludes (PDF):

. . . if the projections are accurate: the number of undergraduate meteorology degree recipients will increasingly exceed the number of meteorology employment opportunities into the next decade. Thus, given recent trends and future projections, the growth of the U.S. undergraduate meteorology population is potentially unsustainable in terms of bachelor’s degree–level employment within meteorology.

With respect to the job market for meteorologists he finds another solid indication of a glut: (Pielke Jr., R., Prometheus)

Earth System Governance, Report On A New IHDP Initiative - This article and position of the IHDP illustrates that the subject of “global warming” (and climate change more generally) is not what the debate is about. The concept of global warming is being used to promote a fundamental reconfiguration of society. This explains, at least in part, why the climate findings and recommendations that have been raised in such assessments as the 2005 National Research Council report on the climate system have been ignored. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Climate Statement "An Orchestrated Litany Of Lies" - Veteran Wellington climate consultant, Dr Vincent Gray, expert reviewer of all four IPCC Assessment Reports, explains why he has resigned his longtime membership of the Royal Society of New Zealand in protest at the inaccuracies in a report on climate change issued on 12 July by the Society's Climate Committee. (NZ Climate Science)

Sun in deep slumber: 10.7 solar flux hits record low value - NRC Canada’s FTP site which logs the daily 10.7 centimeter (2800 megahertz) radio flux from the sun just reported what appears to be a new record low in the observed data. (Watts Up with That?)

Greenhouse Confusion Resolved - Stephen Wilde has been a Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society since 1968. The first eight articles from Mr Wilde were received with a great deal of interest throughout the Co2 Sceptic community.

In Stephen Wilde’s ninth and exclusive article for CO2Sceptics.Com called "Greenhouse Confusion Resolved" he answers the questions that have been raised as a result of his previous work "The Hot Water Bottle Effect". (Co2sceptic)

Whoa! Mortality rise in hot weather not pollution-related - NEW YORK - Hotter temperatures can increase death rates, independent of the effects of air pollution, a new analysis from weather and mortality data from nine US cities demonstrates. (Reuters Health)

Depending in statistical massaging (or torture) 10 degree temperature increases delivered mortality RR 1.018-1.027... leave it to the Harvard School of Public Health to ferret out these Earth-shakers! For those not familiar with Relative Risk numbers RR 2.0 might be interesting while RR 3+ indicates you have something worth looking at. Conversely, RR 0.5 and below suggests you just might have found a protective effect. A few percent either way could sound convincing to a reporter but actually means you have not found a thing -- no discernable difference from random chance.

Inhofe, Coburn, Lucas Blast Environmental Groups For Blocking Critical Oklahoma Drought Assistance - WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, together with Senator Tom Coburn and Congressman Frank Lucas expressed outrage today over a temporary restraining order granted by Judge John Coughenour of the Western District of Washington Federal Court in Seattle on Tuesday July 8th, 2008, at the request of National Wildlife Federation and seven state affiliates. The decision blocked the release of some Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres for haying and grazing. In May, USDA announced the decision to allow haying and grazing on CRP acres, stipulating that it could only take place after the nesting season for birds in the state. A hearing is scheduled for tomorrow. Senator Inhofe has been working with Senator Tom Coburn, Congressman Frank Lucas, and USDA to ensure relief to farmers and ranchers in Northwest Oklahoma. (Press Release)

Some finding Gore’s timing inconvenient - Al Gore hopes to put global warming back at the top of Washington’s agenda Thursday, but some Democrats in Congress are questioning his timing when they are getting pummeled by Republicans over record gas prices.

Gore hopes to deliver a major speech on the environment at Constitution Hall in Washington that will “press the reset button on how people are looking at the energy crisis and the climate crisis,” said Brian Hardwick, spokesman for Gore’s Alliance for Climate Protection.

The former vice president-turned-elder statesman has achieved rock-star status within his party, not to mention a Nobel Prize, for his environmental activism. But Democrats’ political troubles over the issue of gas prices and domestic drilling prompt some lawmakers to wonder about Gore’s timing. (Alexander Bolton, The Hill)

Chill out -- it's just a normal cool summer: Sunny days of '04 and '05 spoiled us, experts say - People are exchanging their flip-flops and shorts for close-toed shoes and fleece more than usual this summer.

The cool, gloomy weather is almost as hot a topic in town as steep gas prices.

But forecasters and climatologists say that while temperatures are below average, they aren't reaching any notable extremes. Problem is, the gray skies over Southcentral this year are following several years of pretty nice weather. (Anchorage Daily News)

Kayaker on 'impossible' mission to ice cap - A BRITISH explorer has unveiled plans to kayak to the North Pole to expose just how quickly the ice cap is melting.

But renowned extreme swimmer Lewis Gordon Pugh, dubbed the human polar bear, is hoping his bid will fail - and not because of the lethal conditions or a walrus attack.

The climate change campaigner said the mission ought to be impossible - but some scientists predict that due to global warming, this year might be the first when someone could do so. (Agence France-Presse)

Oh look! The nice moron has gone to provide a bit more nutrient for those poor polar bears... or maybe the orcas.

China may artificially change unfavorable weather for Olympics - BEIJING, July 15 -- If bad weather threatens the August 8 opening of Beijing's Olympic Games, then meteorologists may change the weather, according to a Chinese meteorology official.

Chen Zhenlin, a vice director with the China Meteorological Administration (CMA), made the statement Tuesday afternoon at a press conference held at the Beijing International Media Center.

Meteorological departments will consult with the Beijing municipal government whether or not to change the city's weather, should there be any unfavorable weather on August 8, Chen said.

He said meteorologists have made preparations for artificial weather modification since 2003, especially on reducing rainfall, but admitted that the technology still has limitations.

"Artificial weather modification could be useful when a drizzle occurs," he said. "But in case of a heavy rainfall, no one can help." (Xinhua)

So few? Many Tory MPs still sceptical on climate change - David Cameron has failed to convince many of his MPs that man-made global warming is a serious problem, according to a poll that finds widespread sceptisicm across parliament about the issue.

A third of Tory MPs who responded to the survey questioned the existence of climate change and its link to human activity. Two-thirds said tackling climate change should not be a priority for local councils.

A significant number of MPs from other parties also told the survey they had doubts on the issue. Overall, the results suggest that up to a fifth of the MPs who have been debating the UK's climate change bill do not understand, or choose to ignore, the science on which it is based. (Download a PDF of the full poll of MPs attitudes to climate change.) (David Adam, The Guardian)

That's a shame -- they should all be skeptical. Very sad commentary on the poor state of science education and gullibility that the global warming faith has so taken hold.

Climate change debate is being distorted by dogma - Human activity is indeed changing the climate, at least in part, but there is an increasing body of science that says that the sun may have a greater role than previously thought, argues Geoffrey Kearsley. (Otago Daily Times)

EU Climate Plan Hurts Business, Says German Ministry - The European Union's plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions doesn't sufficiently take business needs into account, said Germany's economics ministry. (Deutsche Welle) | EU climate proposals hurt industry, says Germany (EUobserver)

Norway Says Wins EU Green Light for Carbon Capture - OSLO - Norway's government said on Wednesday it has received the go ahead from the European Union to pump more state funds into an experimental project to capture carbon dioxide emissions from a gas-fired power plant.

Norway, which is not in the EU but abides by the bloc's economic rules, has argued that its project should circumvent EU public aid rules because it aimed to develop technology needed to tackle global warming stoked by rising carbon emissions. (Reuters)

UK Schools Go Green, Join Carbon Trading Scheme - LONDON - British state schools are to be included under the government's new domestic carbon emissions trading scheme from April 2010, the environment minister said on Wednesday.

Energy use in schools will be measured and count toward the emissions permit quotas of local authorities, which in turn will be encouraged to advise schools on energy efficiency, Hilary Benn said. (Reuters)

Dems' Dereliction - Imagine an energy plan that does it all — from allowing more oil drilling to spending billions on alternative energy sources such as wind, solar and nuclear. Well, guess what? Been there, done that. (IBD)

A Road To Victory Through Alaska? - There's little doubt voters want more drilling if even congressional candidates are starting to trek to Alaska to urge more oil development. Seven are there now. That's a wake-up call to Congress. (IBD)

These are the kind of actions that deflate oil prices: Interior Dept. Opens 2.6 Million Alaskan Acres for Oil Exploration - The Interior Department on Wednesday made 2.6 million acres of potentially oil-rich territory in northern Alaska available for energy exploration. At the same time, it deferred for a decade any decision to open 600,000 acres of land north of Teshekpuk Lake that is the summer home of thousands of migrating caribou and millions of waterfowl.

The decision will open up for drilling much of the northeast section of the Northeast National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, holding an estimated 3.7 billion barrels of oil, Tom Lonnie, Alaska state director for the Bureau of Land Management, said in a conference call with reporters. (New York Times)

Oil, The Dollar And Comparative Advantage - Thanks to oil prices that have reached record levels, proponents of increased exploration in the U.S. have gained an upper hand in the debate over whether to drill in previously untapped areas. (John Tamny, IBD)

Funny (as in 'peculiar'): Global Warming: Top 10, Again - WASHINGTON — Earth scored another Top 10 finish in June — climate wise. It was the eighth warmest June on record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported Wednesday. And the first six months of the year were the ninth warmest since record keeping began in 1880, NOAA's National Climatic Data Center reported. The planets average temperature for June was 60.8 degrees Fahrenheit, 0.9 degrees warmer than average for the month. For the January to June period, the combined global land and ocean surface temperature was 57.1 degrees, which is 0.8 degrees above the 20th century mean. (AP)

Not even the ever-hysterical Hansen and his all-singing, all-dancing GISTEMP agree this time, with 2008 languishing at #18, barely squeaking into the top 20 by a few hundredths of a degree and 0.41 °C cooler than June 1998:
1998 -- 0.67
2005 -- 0.59
2006 -- 0.53
2007 -- 0.53
1997 -- 0.50
1991 -- 0.49
2001 -- 0.47
2002 -- 0.46
1988 -- 0.39
2003 -- 0.39
1999 -- 0.36
1994 -- 0.35
2000 -- 0.35
1995 -- 0.34
2004 -- 0.33
1990 -- 0.31
1987 -- 0.30
2008 -- 0.26
1977 -- 0.23
1981 -- 0.20
Incidentally, NCDC show this June as within 0.11 °C of June 1998, quite a difference of opinion with all the other major time series since even HadCRUT3 shows current temperatures as similar to the 1980s.

Latest NOAA Press Release in Total Disagreement with NASA Satellite (Joseph S. D’Aleo, CCM, Fellow of the AMS)

Australia beginning to realize the cost of their Socialist flirtation: Power and water bills to rise - FAMILIES will be hit with a $220 rise in power bills from 2010 under Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's carbon emissions trading scheme.

And price rises will filter through to every sector of the economy, pushing up inflation by almost 1 per cent.

Middle Australia, which carried the Rudd Government into office, will pay the biggest price in the climate change fight. (Herald Sun)

The moral of the story is never let watermelons get control of anything. The K.Rudd government has rebranded life-sustaining carbon as "pollution" (demonstrating the limit of their thinking about people and the biosphere), which would appear to be one of their focus group outcomes ("Would you be more willing to pay money to support an emission trading scheme or a carbon pollution reduction scheme?").

Even watermelons see it can't achieve anything: Softly softly start threatens to undercut our Kyoto promises - THE big question left dangling in Penny Wong's green paper for a carbon pollution reduction scheme is just how much greenhouse gas will it cut? After months of intense lobbying by industry, the Iemma Government and her Labor colleagues spooked by rising petrol prices, Senator Wong's scheme now reflects more politics than climate science. (Sydney Morning Herald)

And they are upset: The good, the bad and the ugly - THE environmental lobby has given the Government's plan to cut greenhouse emissions a mixed report card: polite praise for its urgency, but damning criticism for compensating coal-fired electricity generators and doing nothing to discourage people from driving.

While all welcomed the decision to stick with a 2010 starting date, green groups attacked the emphasis on compensation for heavy-polluting industry and the decision to offset any petrol price rise with a corresponding fuel-tax cut.

All said the biggest test was yet to come: the medium-term target for 2020, to be set before the end of the year, which will determine how quickly emissions are cut. (The Age)

You pay for their panic - The price of climate panic has been worked out: (Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun)

Climate change paper not seen as the green door to a clear future - PENNY Wong is careful to point out that only about 1000 of the 7.6 million registered businesses in Australia will be "compulsorily covered" by the Government's new emissions trading scheme.

But this neat statistic conveniently overlooks the fact that every business in Australia, along with the entire economy, will still be compulsorily affected by the Government's plans for a greener future.

Consider the rise in electricity costs alone, estimated to be about 16 per cent if carbon is priced at $20 a tonne. (The Australian)

Oh... Cement industry jumps on flower-power wagon - THE cement industry, one of the key industries threatened by the introduction of a carbon emissions trading scheme, is trying to paint itself green.

Concrete companies are among the nation's most energy-intensive but are tackling their poor reputation head on with a symbolic move from diesel to natural gas-powered cement mixers.

A fleet of the "green" mixers, painted in colourful flower-power designs, took to the streets yesterday to promote Boral's efforts to reduce its carbon footprint. (The Australian)

Big talk, small stick - THERE is so much theology in climate change it makes your head spin. The Rudd Government's green paper gives me modest encouragement that it is going to try not to damage the economy excessively in responding to alleged global warming. I am not a global warming denier. But I am, like Catholic Archbishop of Sydney George Pell, a modest sceptic, open to evidence. (Greg Sheridan, The Australian)

Rudd hedges his bets - THE Rudd Government's embrace of a carbon price economy from 2010 is heavily hedged with interventions to save its political neck and keep the economy competitive.

Kevin Rudd wants to be a climate change hero but stay in office and avoid ruining the economy - this is the hazardous and uncertain balance that runs throughout the green paper. (Paul Kelly, The Australian)

From the devout corner: Rudd has big teaching job ahead - KEVIN Rudd can only hope that his plan to save the planet does not become known as the CPR scheme. He would hate the thought to get around that the Government needs resuscitation.

Presumably the brand new title for tackling climate change - the Carbon Pollution Reduction scheme - was market tested to within an inch of its life. Everyone likes the idea of reducing pollution.

From there it gets harder. That is clear from the second-best policy approaches the green paper adopts in an attempt to achieve a first best political outcome. The Government correctly compares the scale of this reform with removing Australia's tariff barriers and deregulating the financial sector. But it lacks the boldness of its predecessors. (Mike Steketee, The Australian)

Metal producers may get lifeline - AUSTRALIA'S aluminium industry is at the forefront of the trade-exposed, emissions-intensive category of businesses which are likely to receive free permits under the Government's carbon reduction scheme.

The lightweight metal, sometimes nicknamed "liquid electricity" for the vast amounts of power required to smelt the ore, is in danger of extinction, according to green groups and some within the industry itself. (Sydney Morning Herald)

Australia's Rudd hits out at critics of carbon trading scheme (AFP)

Poor K.Rudd... can't understand why no one loves him for trying to do what his carefully selected focus groups said they wanted.

Carbon Copies Down Under - The global warming craze officially landed in Canberra yesterday, as the Labor government released a sketch of what it calls "one of the highest priorities of the Australian government": its carbon trading scheme. That should signal the beginning of an important debate about the costs of this grand plan. But can the opposition Liberal Party muster a coherent argument?

Yesterday's 516-page report calls for a huge bureaucratic expansion and undefined costs to industry. Canberra has pledged to reduce emissions to 60% of 2000 levels by 2050, and it wants to set emissions caps this year. The government hasn't yet said how much companies will have to pay for all this. But they did say electricity prices could rise 16%, and fuel, 9%, when emissions trading begins in 2010.

You'd expect the Liberals to be howling. Instead, they're as green as Al Gore. Part of this is a legacy issue. (Wall Street Journal)

PM accused Nelson of backing off debate - The Prime Minister has accused opposition leader Brendan Nelson of walking away from the fight against global warming - as the battle lines take shape over the government's emissions trading scheme. (Sky News)

Premiers see no hope for deal on green plan - QUEBEC — Canada's premiers have concluded it's impossible to get an agreement among themselves for a pan-Canadian plan to reduce greenhouse gases, with some saying they may have to wait until after the U.S. elections to kick-start the process.

Their reasoning comes as a number of premiers, including leaders of energy-rich provinces, are expected to criticize Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion's Green Shift when they meet in Quebec City Wednesday for the annual gathering known as the Council of the Federation. (Globe and Mail)

More propaganda from the Beeb: Will BBC2's new thriller charm us into taking notice of climate change? - The makers of Burn Up knew from the outset that their drama would be a tough sell. The two-part BBC2 thriller by Simon Beaufoy, the writer of The Full Monty, focuses on an oil-industry conspiracy to cover up the full extent of global warming, led by a charismatic and duplicitous American lobbyist called Mack (played by Bradley Whitford, Josh in The West Wing). Ranged against Mack are Tom (Rupert Penry-Jones from Spooks), an oil company chief who belatedly sees the light, and Holly (Neve Campbell), a fellow executive who's secretly collaborating with the environmental campaigners.

Christopher Hall, the producer of Burn Up, which is going to hit the screens next week, admits that "the question we kept asking ourselves was, 'How do we make a sexy programme about CO2? It's a gas, for goodness' sake!' So we see this piece as a Trojan horse: we rivet viewers with good drama and smuggle the message in that way."

In his research, Beaufoy interviewed everyone from the chief executives of oil companies to the head of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and representatives of Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth. He says: "There isn't a more important issue in the world than global warming. Even the Cold War and the Bay of Pigs crisis were notional threats. A warming planet isn't a threat – it's happening.

"But I'm still aware that it's potentially a very dry subject. Dealing with a gas you can't see makes it very difficult for a writer. It's like writing Spooks without any terrorists. So I had to tackle the subject through the characters; that's always the way in to any issue. I thought a thriller seemed the appropriate genre, given the devious, underhand way so many oil companies have behaved." (The Independent)

Meanwhile: 72% Say Gas Prices Biggest Threat to Economy - Americans overwhelmingly view the steady rise in oil and gas prices as the most serious problem facing the economy, and little more than a third of them think those prices are likely to be brought under control in the next few years. (Rasmussen Reports)

Local Fission Hole - What is small enough to be hauled on a truck, has the power to provide electricity to 45,000 homes, can help the U.S. cut its dependence on foreign oil and has no emissions? Hint: The Sierra Club won't like it. (IBD)

Britain Stands by EU Biofuels 2020 Target - Diplomat - BRUSSELS/PARIS - Britain still supports a European Union target to get a tenth of the bloc's road transport fuel from renewable sources like biofuels by 2020, a British diplomat who declined to be named said on Wednesday.

But the OECD group of 30 industrialised nations published a report in Paris on Wednesday saying public support for biofuels was costly and that the alternative transport fuel did little in the fight against climate change. (Reuters)

OECD issues report critical of biofuels, favours moratorium - The OECD favours a moratorium on expanding biofuel production, a senior official with the Paris-based body said on Wednesday following the release of a report critical of vegetable-based fuels.

"It would make a lot of sense to have a moratorium," Stefan Tangermann, head of agriculture and trade analysis at the OECD told AFP.

"All these programmes should be reconsidered because we found them inefficient in terms of climate change."

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development in a study published Wednesday found that costly public support for biofuel production has but a limited impact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and on improving energy security.

At the same time, according to the report, development of the biofuel sector "will contribute to higher food prices over the medium term and to food insecurity for the most vulnerable populations in developing countries." (AFP)

Problems Persist With Red Cross Blood Services - For 15 years, the American Red Cross has been under a federal court order to improve the way it collects and processes blood. Yet, despite $21 million in fines since 2003 and repeated promises to follow procedures intended to ensure the safety of the nation’s blood supply, it continues to fall short. (New York Times)

Who are the real winners and losers when young people are taught to eat to win? - For children and teen athletes, what their coaches say is gospel. Most parents probably trust that the information being given their impressionable children is credible and in their best interests. It would be unthinkable that young people would be used to sell products or being put at risk for eating disorders. (Junkfood Science)

Fat reason? (Junkfood Science)

Malaria drug may be fueling antibiotic resistance - CHICAGO - Treatment with a common malaria drug may explain why people in remote villages in South America have high levels of resistance to a widely used class of antibiotics known as fluoroquinolones, despite never having taken the drugs, Canadian researchers said on Tuesday.

The surprising findings suggest that treating malaria with the cheap, widely used drug chloroquine -- a close cousin of fluoroquinolones -- may boost the risk of resistance to these antibiotics, they said. (Reuters)

Death in the deep: Volcanoes blamed for mass extinction - Ninety-three million years ago, Earth was a reshuffled jigsaw of continents, a hothouse where the average temperature was nearly twice that of today. Palm trees grew in what would be Alaska, large reptiles roamed in northern Canada and the ice-free Arctic Ocean warmed to the equivalent of a tepid swimming pool. So our planet was balmy -- but hardly a biological paradise, for it was whacked by a mass die-out. The depths of the ocean suddenly became starved of oxygen, wiping out swathes of marine life. (AFP)

Gulf of Mexico "Dead Zone" to Hit Record Size - NOAA - HOUSTON - The Gulf of Mexico's "dead zone" -- a swath of algae-laden water with oxygen levels low enough to choke out marine life -- will likely reach record size this year, and the main culprits are rising ethanol use and massive Midwest flooding, scientists said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Frogs with disease-resistance genes may escape extinction - As frog populations die off around the world, researchers have identified certain genes that can help the amphibians develop resistance to harmful bacteria and disease. The discovery may provide new strategies to protect frog populations in the wild. (Public Library of Science)

July 16, 2008

Fine example of advocacy: US EPA Says Greenhouse Emissions Endanger Health - WASHINGTON - The US Environmental Protection Agency said on Monday that greenhouse gas emissions endanger human health, a critical finding that has languished in bureaucratic limbo since last December. (Reuters)

In a 149-page document, the agency's scientists said that "warming of the climate system is unequivocal" Really? Relative to when, exactly? Relative to when it was cooler? Then true. Relative to when it was not, then false. What is the precise surface temperature of the Earth? Unknown. What is the precise expected surface temperature? Also unknown -- thought to be in the range of about 285-290 kelvins (12 -17 °C), which is about the range presented by climate models.

More directly to the point is just how temperature-tolerant people really are, inhabiting Earth through ranges of average daily temperature of more than 55 kelvins (°C, about 100 °F), from average daily temperatures of about -20°C to 36°C. Unless you live in the tropics then it is likely your temperature range through the course of any given day makes estimated net change since 1750 unnoticeably small. Where I am in sub-tropical Queensland today's estimated range is 9°C (16 °F) -- has global temperature drifted upwards by some fraction of a degree over 250 years? Who could tell?

Have people gotten sicker over the last 250 years of alleged warming? No, sanitation and health care have improved so much people's lifespans have doubled while technology and affordable energy distribution has made daily temperature largely irrelevant in the developed world. The obvious answer to any temperature panic then is to make sure development and energy distribution proceeds at rates sufficient to protect people's health, no?

Another carbon con-job: Exelon Seeks Carbon Output Cuts - NEW YORK - Exelon Corp, the largest US nuclear power operator, said on Tuesday it would seek to slash carbon output from its own operations and those of its customers by 15 million metric tons per year by 2020.

The plan seeks to reduce or offset emissions of the carbon dioxide gas blamed for contributing to global warming by the equivalent of removing 3 million cars from the roads, the company said.

Nuclear power plant operators have long supported efforts to trim carbon dioxide emissions because their power plants emit virtually none of the greenhouse gas, in contrast to coal-fired power plants which are among the nation's top emitters of carbon. (Reuters)

Just like windmills, these guys conveniently omit mention of CO2 emissions from components like concrete, both from its manufacture and curing and there's one heck of a lot of concrete in a nuclear plant, same as there is in the enormous foundations of modern wind towers. Fortunately carbon dioxide emissions are of no real-world consequence but carbon scams carry real costs for consumers, taxpayers and society.

Al Gore, International Man of Madness - Australian doctors have published in a medical journal the case of a 17-year old held for observation, suffering the first observed case of “climate change delusion phenomenon” (CCD). It seems that he suffered from fears that “due to climate change, his own water consumption could lead to days to the deaths of millions of people through exhaustion of water supplies”. This particular product of modern education techniques “was referred to the inpatient psychiatric unit at Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne with an eight-month history of depressed mood…He also…had visions of apocalyptic events”. Where ever would he get such an idea?

OK, this is where it gets uncomfortable, but…first observed case? Sure, and I just swerved from the first observed case of road rage. Good grief, you could have padded the walls at last year’s Nobel Peace Prize award ceremony. Bring the giant butterfly nets to any college campus, and call avant garde “artist” Cristo to surround the European continent in bubble wrap, stat, because this mania long-ago reached epic proportions.

Better late than never, and all that. But please tell me the difference between this kid and Al Gore? (Christopher C. Horner, Human Events)

Oops! A Tutorial on the Basic Physics of Climate Change - Abstract: In this paper, we have used several basic atmospheric–physics models to show that additional carbon dioxide will warm the surface of Earth. We also show that observed solar variations cannot account for observed global temperature increase. (David Hafemeister & Peter Schwartz, APS)

Conclusion: Earth is getting warmer1. Basic atmospheric models clearly predict that additional greenhouse gasses will raise the temperature of Earth2. To argue otherwise, one must prove a physical mechanism that gives a reasonable alternative cause of warming3. This has not been done. Sunspot and temperature correlations do not prove causality4.

  1. Relative to when? When it was cooler? Granted but is this either unnatural or bad? Is global mean temperature even a useful metric?
  2. Basic atmospheric models postulate additional greenhouse will cause catastrophic warming of the Earth's surface although there is no physical evidence of that. The onus is on advocates to demonstrate this is both possible and likely, not on skeptics to demonstrate otherwise.
  3. Moreover, prior to needing an alternate mechanism for catastrophic warming one must first prove said warming exists, for which one needs a reference point of some idealized or precise expected temperature and which we do not have. Then we would need to quantify all natural climate influences and the net sign of feedback mechanisms, which remain unknown. The statement "This has not been done" is true for almost all climate metrics.
  4. While indeed correlation does not prove causation this is particularly relevant in the advocates' association of estimated global mean temperature increase since 1750 and post Industrial Revolution greenhouse gas emissions. Ice core evidence shows atmospheric greenhouse gases rise in response to warming but there is no evidence of the reverse having ever been true. The modern correlation is particularly poor.

None of their conclusions supporting catastrophic carbon dioxide-driven warming appear valid.

Proved: There is no climate crisis - WASHINGTON - Mathematical proof that there is no “climate crisis” appears today in a major, peer-reviewed paper in Physics and Society, a learned journal of the 10,000-strong American Physical Society, SPPI reports. (Robert Ferguson, SPPI)

Observed Climate Change in New Hampshire - In December 2007, New Hampshire Governor John Lynch signed an Executive Order calling for the establishment of a “Task Force to develop a Climate Change Action Plan” for the state of New Hampshire. The Task Force’s Climate Action Plan is due to the governor by September 1, 2008 and is to include a recommendation of “quantified goals for reductions of [New Hampshire’s] greenhouse gases” as well as “specific regulatory, voluntary and policy actions” that the state should consider to achieve the emissions reductions goals. (SPPI)

EU Climate Package Needs Improvement, Germany Says - BERLIN - European Union proposals to slash greenhouse gas emissions are seriously flawed and fail to take sufficient account of business needs, the German Economy Ministry said on Tuesday after a meeting of government and industry officials. (Reuters)

Households' carbon blow to be cushioned - Australian households will receive either tax cuts or increased family payments to offset higher electricity and fuel prices, as the government admits its climate change plan will drive up inflation. (Business Day)

Govt unveils plan for emissions trading - The Rudd government has opted for a softly, softly approach to emissions trading which will likely lead to an increase in the cost of living of less than one per cent.

The government's options paper on emissions paper, released in Canberra on Wednesday, will see Australia ease into a relatively gentle scheme on July 1, 2010.

This approach is good news for industry and means there will be a limited impact on household budgets - but it's not likely to lead to deep cuts to greenhouse emissions in the short-term.

Petrol will be included in emissions trading, but the fuel excise will be cut so that there is no net increase in price.

As expected, electricity is included in the scheme, as is throwing out rubbish to landfill, while agriculture is out until at least 2015. (AAP)

Hurricane, warming link challenged - In Al Gore's Nobel-winning movie An Inconvenient Truth, hurricanes became symbols of the danger of global warming.

The reality is more complicated.

Scientists are locked in debate about whether global warming is spiking the intensity of hurricanes. Even those who agree that humans are causing global warming disagree about whether it is making hurricanes worse.

Leading experts are changing their findings. (St. Petersburg Times)

Prejudiced Authors, Prejudiced Findings - The IPCC is a single-interest organisation, whose charter presumes a widespread human influence on climate, rather than consideration of whether such influence may be negligible or missing altogether. Though the IPCC's principles also state that a wide range of views is to be sought when selecting lead authors and contributing authors, this rule has been honored more in the breach than in the observance. (John McLean, SPPI)

Recent Ignored Research Findings In Climate Science - An Illustration Of A Broken Scientific Method - This weblog lists three research findings that are in the peer reviewed literature, but have been completely ignored by the IPCC and CCSP climate assessment communities, nor have been refuted in the literature. These are just three examples of the level to which the scientific method has sunk to in climate science. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Cooling of Atmosphere Due to CO2 Emission  - The writers investigated the effect of CO2 emission on the temperature of atmosphere. Computations based on the adiabatic theory of greenhouse effect show that increasing CO2 concentration in the atmosphere results in cooling rather than warming of the Earth's atmosphere. (Energy Sources, Part A: Recovery, Utilization, and Environmental Effects, Volume 30, Issue 1 January 2008 , pages 1 - 9)

Anyone got a .pdf of this paper? I'd like a look at it but our budget doesn't stretch to buying anything like the full spectra of papers published. If you can help out with a copy please send by email.

The importance of measuring temperature away from human influence - Many of you have followed my “how not to measure temperature” series showing many examples of the folly of thermometer placement in the USHCN network. But what about the rest of the world? (Watts Up with That?)

How not to measure temperature, part 67 - Guest Post by Russ Steele

After a two day search for the Buffalo Bill Dam Stevenson Screen listed in the NCDC Data base as COOP 4871175, Ellen and I found this surface station at the old power plant in a non-public area. On our first day, we went to the visitors center, which is where Google Earth placed the cross hairs for the coordinates listed in the NCDC data base. The visitor center staff said no weather station there, and suggested we contact the Department Interior, Bureau of Reclamation at the new power house below the dam. (Watts Up With That?)

From CO2 Science this week:

More Bad Consequences of Biofuels: The number of negative impacts of one of the major pillars of Sir John Houghton's Creation Care Crusade grows ever larger the more closely it is examined.

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
Was there a Medieval Warm Period? YES, according to data published by 560 individual scientists from 337 separate research institutions in 38 different countries ... and counting! This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from Lake Teletskoye, Altai Mountains, Southern Siberia, Russia. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Biofuels: The climate-alarmist plan to grow biofuels to replace fossil fuels is a prime example of a "cure" that is worse than the "disease" it is designed to fight.

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Black Mangrove, Blackgram, Castor Bean, and Loblolly Pine.

Journal Reviews:
New Evidence for a Planetary Temperature Regulator: What is it? ... and what does it imply?

Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice Trends: How similar were they over the past three decades? ... and what do the results portend about the future?

The Little Ice Age and Medieval Warm Period in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica: When did they occur? ... and how cold and warm -- relative to the rest of the Holocene in the case of the LIA and today in the case of the MWP -- were they?

Effects of Rising Air Temperature and CO2 Concentration on Monoterpene Emissions from Pine Trees: What are they? ... and what is their significance?

Marine Ecosystem Response to "Ocean Acidification" Due to Atmospheric CO2 Enrichment: Just how devastating is it? (

In the virtual realm: Study: Future snowmelt in West twice as early as expected; threatens ecosystems and water reserves - According to a new study, global warming could lead to larger changes in snowmelt in the western United States than was previously thought, possibly increasing wildfire risk and creating new water management challenges for agriculture, ecosystems and urban populations. (Purdue University)

LOST Oil Prophets - Against the alarming backdrop of gasoline prices at over $4 a gallon, oil industry executives are busily working the halls of Congress to make the case for increasing domestic oil supply. In addition to pushing for access to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and oil reserves off the east and west coasts, however, some industry reps are also rehashing the argument that the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST) presents an opportunity further to secure American oil by "locking in" drilling rights in our Arctic continental shelf.

It should arguably be self-evident to the oil industry, based upon its own long and difficult experience with trying to open up additional domestic sources, that LOST enthusiasts are promising much more than our politicians have shown a willingness to deliver. Were the industry to think things through and conduct its due diligence on this treaty, it would also be self-evident that LOST will impose severe costs on American oil companies, leaving the consumer stranded at the pump with even higher gasoline prices, after having been led to believe that salvation lies beneath the polar ice. (Ben Lerner, American Spectator)

Australia Considers First New Coal Port for 25 Yrs - CANBERRA - Australia, the world's biggest per-head greenhouse-gas polluter, is considering its first new coal export port for 25 years, despite official efforts to curb coal-fired carbon emissions to fight climate warming. (Reuters)

No one should too excited about Australia's K.Rudd government's 'actions' on anything. There is no apparent substance to any of their populist blathering and all indications are that actions they do take (if at all substantial) will be promptly undone as the government are highly unlikely to last even the full 3 years of their first term. Australia's latest socialist experiment seems to be time-expiring at a prodigious rate.

Ethanol: Miracle or Mistake? - Florida is sinking millions into ethanol research and grants. But nobody is even close to making it profitable. (Mike Vogel, Florida Trend)

Hmm... Environmental pollutant has sex-skewing effect - Women exposed to high levels of PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls – a group of banned environmental pollutants) are less likely to give birth to male children. A study published today in BioMed Central's open access journal Environmental Health found that among women from the San Francisco Bay Area, those exposed to higher levels of PCBs during the 50s and 60s, were significantly more likely to give birth to female children. (BioMed Central)

So, which is it? Less likely to give birth to males (were there fewer births in total?) or more likely to have female offspring (more net births)? What were the population controls for same age/era births in an unexposed group? Were birth ratios skewed by Cold War anxiety? All this gives us is an assertion but it doesn't tell us whether sunspots or Sputnik were controlling variables. Not much value.

Crop Residue May Be Too Valuable to Harvest for Biofuels - In the rush to develop renewable fuels from plants, converting crop residues into cellulosic ethanol would seem to be a slam dunk.

However, that might not be such a good idea for farmers growing crops without irrigation in regions receiving less than 25 inches of precipitation annually, says Ann Kennedy, a USDA-Agricultural Research Service soil scientist and adjunct professor of crop and soil sciences at Washington State University. (

July 15, 2008

Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered - Abstract: The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2007) concluded that anthropogenic CO2 emissions probably caused more than half of the “global warming” of the past 50 years and would cause further rapid warming. However, global mean surface temperature has not risen since 1998 and may have fallen since late 2001. The present analysis suggests that the failure of the IPCC’s models to predict this and many other climatic phenomena arises from defects in its evaluation of the three factors whose product is climate sensitivity:

  1. Radiative forcing ΔF;
  2. The no-feedbacks climate sensitivity parameter κ; and
  3. The feedback multiplier ƒ.

Some reasons why the IPCC’s estimates may be excessive and unsafe are explained. More importantly, the conclusion is that, perhaps, there is no “climate crisis”, and that currently-fashionable efforts by governments to reduce anthropogenic CO2 emissions are pointless, may be ill-conceived, and could even be harmful. (Christopher Monckton of Brenchley, APS)

Europe's Warming Attributed to Cleaner Air, Not Climate Change - Clean air legislation has an ironic side-effect

When the effects of global warming are discussed, Europe is often the focus. While many parts of the Earth have seen little or no warming in the past two decades, Europe has seen a rapid temperature increase of one full degree Centigrade. The rise has been a contributing factor in at least one deadly heat wave in recent years.

A new study suggests much of that warming isn't due to global warming at all, but rather a decrease in atmospheric pollution as a result of clean air legislation. The cleaner air has fewer small particles known as aerosols, which tend to block sunlight from reaching the Earth's surface. A reduction in aerosols leads to an effect known as "solar brightening," which increases surface warming. (Michael Asher, Daily Tech)

My Position on Climate Change By Hendrik Tennekes - The so-called scientific basis of the climate problem is within my professional competence as a meteorologist. It is my professional opinion that there is no evidence at all for catastrophic global warming. It is likely that global temperatures will rise a little, much as IPCC predicts, but there is a growing body of evidence that the errant behavior of the Sun may cause some cooling in the foreseeable future.

It is also my professional opinion that the severely limited predictive capacity of the natural sciences is no adequate basis for globally orchestrated mitigation efforts concerning greenhouse gases. Any political basis for global mitigation efforts, such as a cap-and trade system for fossil fuel consumption, is outside my professional competence. Opportunities for local and regional mitigation and adaptation projects, however, are plentiful and promising. Societies have a long track record on adaptation and mitigation on local and regional scales, often with considerable success. (Climate Science)

The green inquisition - We're being force-fed vastly over-hyped scare stories which block out sensible solutions to climate change (Björn Lomborg, The Guardian)

Election Won’t Resolve Gas Prices Or Global Warming - CHURCHVILLE, VA–On most U.S. political issues, Barack Obama and John McCain take sharply different positions and represent real choice for the voters. On the biggest issue of all, however—$4 gas and global warming strategy—Obama and McCain seem to agree. They both think energy prices need to triple yet again to prevent man-made global warming.

Since the presidential primaries finished, however, we’ve found that global temperatures have turned downward. Global temperatures have dropped sharply—0.7 degree since the beginning of 2006. This puts our thermometers back about where they were a century ago. This has happened despite a continuing increase in global greenhouse gas emissions. (CGFI)

The Week In Washington, D. C. - The APNR was accompanied by a short introduction by EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson explaining why he thought that the EPA document demonstrated why using the Clean Air Act to regulate CO2 would be inappropriate, plus eight letters from the heads of other departments and agencies (Energy, Commerce, OIRA, etc.) summarizing their objections and a ten page-memo highlighting the problems such regulation would cause. In addition, the White House put out a strong statement that argues that the EPA notice demonstrates the folly of trying to use the Clean Air Act to regulate something it was never designed to regulate and that calls on Congress to take action immediately to avoid the regulatory trainwreck that will ensue if EPA is allowed to proceed. (Myron Ebell, Cooler Heads Digest)

Nordhaus’s Less-than-optimal Climate Strategy - In “Pointless to rush a carbon emissions plan,” the Toronto Globe and Mail’s Neal Reynolds compares Yale Professor William Nordhaus’s “optimal” approach to controlling greenhouse gases and finds it superior to approaches that would impose deeper controls more rapidly, such as those favored by Stern, various EU leaders, and many in the US. (Cato at Liberty)

PM's $5bn green gamble against Treasury advice - PRIME Minister Kevin Rudd is set to announce a controversial $5 billion scheme to slash carbon emissions.

The plan, which will call for carbon to be captured and stored in forests and oceans, will be outlined in the Government's discussion paper on its planned emissions trading scheme to be released tomorrow, Treasury sources said.

But the same sources said the Rudd Government would be going against Treasury advice if the expensive scheme to store carbon in the seabed or in deeply submerged subterranean strata went ahead.

They said Treasury had warned against announcing such a proposal because the carbon sequestration technology was largely untried. (Piers Akerman, The Australian)

Climate cure more costly than disease - DEMOCRACY, as Arthur Balfour said, is government by explanation: but the explanations must be good ones. The Garnaut report was to explain the basis for the Government's climate change policy.

Unfortunately it leaves open more questions than it answers.

This is because the encyclopedia Garnaut and his team have produced does everything except what it was supposed to do: cost a target for greenhouse emissions reductions.

That, we are told, will come later, with the delay being due to difficulties in the modelling of emissions reductions and their economic costs.

That a delay would occur is hardly implausible.

But given that the primary purpose was to present those estimates, why didn't Garnaut simply delay the completion of his report? (Henry Ergas, The Australian)

When Graphs Attack! - Yesterday I showed satellite imagery of the North Pole and areas into northern Canada. It was still quite icebound.

Today I offer this graph from the National Snow and Ice Data Center, which was oft cited back in early June with the phrase “if this trend continues…”. (Watts Up With That?)

Having another go: Global warning: Melting ice threatens Arctic foxes - Polar bears may not be the only Arctic wildlife threatened by global warming. Scientists have discovered that Arctic foxes also struggle as the ice disappears because they rely on the frozen seas to survive the bleak winters. (The Guardian)

Will Canadians support a hard-nosed approach to climate change? - Judging from his performance at last week's G8 meeting, Prime Minister Stephen Harper is wagering that voters will back a firm foreign policy on the issue of climate change. Maybe he's right but, based on the Afghanistan war experience, it's no sure bet. (Globe and Mail)

Energy Expert: Poverty Stricken Don't 'Give a Damn' About Warming - Left-wing conference hears that without prosperity people won't try to fix climate; promotes government mandate for flex-fuel cars. (Julia A. Seymour, Business & Media Institute)

Video: A question of censorship - CNN's Ric Sanchez spoke about the questions on whether the Bush administration spun climate change reports. (CNN) | Transcript

Stop encouraging them: Undersea volcanic rocks offer vast repository for greenhouse gas, says study - A group of scientists has used deep ocean-floor drilling and experiments to show that volcanic rocks off the West Coast and elsewhere might be used to securely imprison huge amounts of globe-warming carbon dioxide captured from power plants or other sources. In particular, they say that natural chemical reactions under 78,000 square kilometers (30,000 square miles) of ocean floor off California, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia could lock in as much as 150 years of U.S. CO2 production. The findings are published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Global warming may expand U.S. 'kidney stone belt', say scientists - OTTAWA - One of the first direct impacts that global warming has on our health may hit us where it hurts: In the kidneys.

People will develop more kidney stones in a hotter climate, because the heat tends to make us dehydrated and that causes the stones to form, two Texas urologists say. (Canwest News Service)

So, gorebull warming makes people too dumb to drink sufficient fluids...

Hot air bubble: Carbon credit market hit by UN crackdown (Daily Telegraph)

Cap and Redistribute - The Group of Eight may be waking up to the cost of fighting global warming, but in Australia, the opposite is happening. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has promised to implement an emissions trading scheme by 2010, claiming it would be "reckless not to act." Rhetoric aside, Mr. Rudd just wants to do what every Labor pol likes: tax industry and redistribute the proceeds, at huge cost to the economy.

The Australian public saw an outline of these plans earlier this month, when economist Ross Garnaut released a Labor-commissioned report on climate change and how to combat it. Mr. Garnaut starts with the premise that it isn't "desirable" or "feasible" to "slow living standards" to fight climate change. Yet "the solution," he argues, is in "removing the links between economic activity and greenhouse gas emissions."

If the government-directed breakdown of free-market price signals sounds like creeping socialism, it is. The Garnaut Review suggests selling artificial permits that allow companies to "pollute." Industry would either fold under the cost burden or pass those costs onto consumers. Canberra, on the other hand, would haul in huge revenues from the permit sales. Mr. Garnaut will estimate this tax take when he issues his final report in September. The Rudd government is releasing its own paper on the subject this week. (Wall Street Journal)

Slim Pickins From T. Boone Pickens - A world-famous Texas oilman says our energy answer lies in alternative energy. While tilting at windmills, he says that we can't drill our way to energy bliss. So why do the Russians keep drilling? (IBD)

Bush Acts on Drilling, Challenging Democrats - WASHINGTON — President Bush lifted nearly two decades of executive orders banning drilling for oil and natural gas off the country’s shoreline on Monday while challenging Congress to open up more areas for exploration to address soaring energy prices.

Democrats in Congress, joined by environmentalists, criticized the step and ridiculed it as ineffectual, while most Republicans and industry representatives applauded it as long overdue.

The lifting of the moratorium — first announced by Mr. Bush’s father, President George Bush, in 1990 and extended by President Bill Clinton — will have no real impact because a Congressional moratorium on drilling enacted in 1981 and renewed annually remains in force. And there appeared to be no consensus for lifting it in tandem with Mr. Bush’s action.

Rather than signaling a change in the country’s policy, the president’s decision appeared only to harden well-established positions, intensifying an already contentious issue in the middle of an election year. (New York Times)

Will To Drill Is Strong, Poll Finds; Climate Change Pales As Concern - Contrary to claims by Al Gore and others that global warming is the greatest challenge of our time, Americans by better than 3-to-1 say the price of gasoline is a bigger problem now, according to the latest IBD/TIPP Poll. (IBD)

'Free Our Oil' - That was House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's catchphrase last week as she continued to grope for an energy policy. One of her ideas was to request "a small drawdown" in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, no irony intended. At least President Bush has finally called the Speaker's bluff by rescinding the 1990 executive ban on offshore energy exploration.

With Mr. Bush's belated decision yesterday, Congress's moratorium on offshore drilling is now the last major political barrier to increasing domestic oil-and-gas production. Yet Democratic leaders have refused to schedule even a single hearing on the topic. House Appropriations Chairman David Obey recently shut down the annual budget process rather than allow Republicans to offer drilling amendments. He and the Speaker know that if they allow a vote, moderate Democrats are sure to defect and the offshore moratorium could end. (Wall Street Journal)

Feckless To Reckless, Pelosi Should Resign - With oil hitting $147, Nancy Pelosi finally admits energy is a problem. But instead of drilling for it, she's cooked up a new drain-the-reserves scheme. It's pure politics at a time of crisis. She ought to resign. (IBD)

Energy Clarity - Describes relationship between oil and electricity. First in a series (YouTube)

Answer To Energy Is 'All Of The Above' - Watching Democrat leaders in Washington respond to skyrocketing gas prices has been nothing short of a tutorial on the five stages of grief. (IBD)

US Auto Trends Cloud Fuel Efficiency Rules - WASHINGTON - A sharp rise in gasoline prices and a consumer stampede from large sport utility vehicles and pickups have renewed calls for US regulators to consider more aggressive fuel efficiency standards. (Reuters)

Renewable Portfolio Standards: Another Hidden Tax - Renewable portfolio standards that have passed in several states (and promoted by many other state climate commissions) are nothing more than another hidden energy tax (like cap-and-trade). That is no better illustrated than in a Raleigh News & Observer article today, which explains how Progress Energy is about to go to battle with North Carolina's Utilities Commission in order to raise rates so it can pay for its (state-required 12.5 percent minimum) renewable-sourced energy generation: (Paul Chesser, Climate Strategies Watch)

High petrol prices are good for us, says Cabinet minister - A Cabinet minister welcomed spiralling petrol prices last night as an incentive for drivers to make fewer car journeys.

Environment Secretary Hilary Benn said the high cost of oil helps force people off the road and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. (Daily Mail)

A Nuclear Power Renaissance - Nuclear power was once going to deliver “electricity too cheap to meter.” Later, following the accidents at Three Mile Island and Chernobyl, it was feared and scorned. Recently it has been quietly providing 20 percent of America’s electricity. Today it is experiencing a renaissance of interest, both in the U.S. and worldwide. Why? (William E. Burchill, Energy Tribune)

Oil is NOT a fossil fuel and AGW is non-science - We all grew up believing that oil is a fossil fuel, and just about every day this ‘fact’ is mentioned in newspapers and on TV. However, let us not forget what Lenin said – “A lie told often enough becomes truth.” It was in 1757 that the great Russian scholar Mikhailo V. Lomonosov enunciated the hypothesis that oil might originate from biological detritus. The scientists who first rejected Lomonsov’s hypothesis, at the beginning of the nineteenth century, were the famous German naturalist and geologist Alexander von Humboldt and the French chemist and thermodynamicist Louis Joseph Gay-Lussac, who together enunciated the proposition that oil is a primordial material erupted from great depth, and is unconnected with any biological matter near the surface of the Earth. (Peter J. Morgan, CFP)

Greens are the enemies of liberty - Environmentalists want to curb our freedom far more than the government's anti-terrorist laws ever will (Bernard O'Neill ,The Guardian)

Evil Incarnate: The Lies that Keep On Killing - If you think the vilest evil possible comes with a pitch fork, and horns, breathing fire, sneering and hurling curses, and wearing red, you are wrong. The most despicable evil in the world comes with a smile, a declaration of its concern for the future of mankind, and a promise to save the world—wearing green. (The Autonomist)

Is it real or is it Memorex? - You’ve no doubt heard the news, reporting on a new study claiming to have shown that fat people are in denial and don’t know they’re fat. Astonishingly, no reporter or professional medical writer has noted the statistical errors revealed in the study.

Meanwhile, obesity stakeholders have been hand wringing about that very same study which reveals their efforts to market an obesity crisis may have been too successful and is showing signs of backfiring. Growing numbers of people aren’t buying what they’re selling.

Is it because fat people are in denial or was the authors’ other admission closer to the truth? (Junkfood Science)

Statin commercials on Disney? - As anticipated, the new guidelines on cholesterol screening and statins for children just released by the American Academy of Pediatricians have elicited responses from two camps: medical science and political science. Sadly, they’re not on the same page. (Junkfood Science)

Healing pants — can you lose weight and be cured by special fabrics? - Can special organic cotton pants, treated with Ayurvedic herbs, be infused with healing knowledge? They’re called health fabrics, from the Sanskrit word “ayur” for health and “veda” for wisdom or knowledge. They’re the latest products being marketed through diet and women’s magazines, promising to cure a wide range of health problems. By offering to custom make the special pants for difficult-to-fit bodies, they’re trying to especially appeal to fat customers. While Oprah readers may believe in healing trousers, should you? (Junkfood Science)

Experts detail how rice absorbs so much arsenic - HONG KONG - Scientists in Japan may have discovered why rice absorbs so much arsenic from the soil, paving the way for fresh efforts to block the potentially harmful element from Asia's staple food.

In the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, they said they had identified two proteins in rice plants that appeared to transport arsenic from the soil to the grain. (Reuters)

July 14, 2008

Dopey buggers! Decisions Shut Door on Bush Clean-Air Steps - Any major steps by the Bush administration to control air pollution or reduce emissions of heat-trapping gases came to a dead end on Friday, the combined result of a federal court ruling and a decision by the head of the Environmental Protection Agency.

In the morning, a federal appeals court struck down the cornerstone of the administration’s strategy to control industrial air pollution by agreeing with arguments by the utility industry that the E.P.A. had exceeded its authority when it established the Clean Air Interstate Rule in 2005. The court, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, said the rule, which set new requirements for major pollutants, had “fatal flaws.”

A few hours later, the E.P.A. chief rejected any obligation to regulate heat-trapping gases like carbon dioxide under existing law, saying that to do so would involve an “unprecedented expansion” of the agency’s authority that would have “a profound effect on virtually every sector of the economy,” touching “every household in the land.”

Taken together, the developments make it clear that any significant new effort to fight air pollution will fall to the next president. (New York Times)

This has nothing to do with "pollution" but is about the essential trace gas: carbon dioxide.

Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: Regulating Greenhouse Gas Emissions under the Clean Air Act (EPA)

Regulating Greenhouse Gas Emissions under the Clean Air Act ( ~6Mb .pdf, 588pp) (EPA)

Inhofe Says EPA’s Climate Announcement is a 'Nightmare Scenario' - Believes Regulations will Bankrupt the American Economy

WASHINGTON, DC – Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, today expressed concern over the Environmental Protection Agency’s Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) soliciting public input on the effects of climate change and the potential ramifications of the Clean Air Act in relation to carbon dioxide emissions. The notice is in response to the April 2, 2007, Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. EPA.

Senator Inhofe agrees with Administrator Steve Johnson, who stated, “Regulation under the Clean Air act could result in an unprecedented expansion of EPA authority that would have a profound effect on virtually every sector of the economy and touch every household in the land.” (EPW Blog)

No: Posturing and Abdication - The Bush administration made clear on Friday that it will do virtually nothing to regulate the greenhouse gases that cause global warming. With no shame and no apology, it stuck a thumb in the eye of the Supreme Court, repudiated its own scientists and exposed the hollowness of Mr. Bush’s claims to have seen the light on climate change.

That is the import of an announcement by Stephen Johnson, the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, that the E.P.A. will continue to delay a decision on whether global warming threatens human health and welfare and requires regulations to address it. Mr. Johnson said his agency would seek further public comment on the matter, a process that will almost certainly stretch beyond the end of Mr. Bush’s term.

The urgent problem of global warming demands urgent action. And the Supreme Court surely expected a speedier response when — 15 months ago — it ordered the E.P.A. to determine whether greenhouse gas pollution from vehicles (and, by extension, other sources) endangers human welfare and, if so, to issue regulations to limit emissions. (New York Times)

Despite the billions of dollars invested in a desperate search for a problem there remains no evidence nor indication of any harm from enhanced greenhouse -- it's a failed hypothesis of no consequence.

Bush Climate Action Now? 'Bogus' - Schwarzenegger - WASHINGTON - California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said on Sunday the Bush administration did not believe it should do anything about global warming and that any last-minute action before leaving office would be "bogus." (Reuters)

Here's a newsflash for you, Arnie: every "action" to "address global warming" is bogus by definition.

Saturday Funnies: 'Imagine There's No Global Warming' - Our friends at Minnesotans for Global Warming -- the folks who brought us the fabulous video "If We Had Some Global Warming" -- have just released a new number deliciously set to John Lennon's "Imagine."

Update: Lyrics at end of post. (NewsBusters)

Government lagging on CO2 curbs, say MPs - The government is "lagging far behind" in its efforts to curb carbon emissions from its buildings and activities, according to a report from a committee of MPs.

The report from the environmental audit committee (EAC) said that emissions from government departments had dropped by just 0.7% over the period 1999-2000 to 2006-07, much less than the 8% necessary to hit its target of a 12.5% reduction by 2010/11. (The Guardian)

Poor people can't worry about global warming - Headline number one: raising the tax on older cars hits poorer drivers hardest.

Well, who would have thought it? Almost anybody actually, who had asked the question: "Who is most likely to own an older, cheaper car?"

How could anyone - let alone the elected members of a governing party whose raison d'être has been to represent the interests of the poor - not have deduced that raising the Vehicle Excise Duty on cars that had been purchased years ago would be likely to fall most heavily on those who were not rich enough to replace their cars every year?

Headline number two: the use of crops to produce biofuels is a direct cause of world food shortages and so is responsible for starvation in the developing world and escalating food prices in developed countries, thus helping to further pauperise the poor of every nation.

Who would have guessed? Well, almost anyone with even a basic understanding of how markets work - which supposedly includes every active member of the Conservative Party, and most of those who count themselves as New Labour, too. (Janet Daley, Daily Telegraph)

Global Warming Led to ‘Black Hawk Down,’ Congressman Says – A top Democrat told high school students gathered at the U.S. Capitol Thursday that climate change caused Hurricane Katrina and the conflict in Darfur, which led to the “black hawk down” battle between U.S. troops and Somali rebels.

Rep. Edward Markey (D-Mass.), chairman of the House (Select) Energy Independence and Global Warming Committee, also equated the drive for global warming legislation with the drive for women’s suffrage in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. (

Damned fool! As it happens the period 1989-1993 was one of cooling in an unspectacular portion of the time series, according to the NCDC. The real reason for violence in Somalia?

"Somalia has long struggled with internal fighting and poor economic and social conditions for its people. Since decolonization there has been no real centralized authority in Somalia, and presently the country is divided into at least sixteen warring factions, based on clan alliances, which constantly change. In 1969 Mohammed Siad Barre became the leader of Somalia through a military coup. After a long and difficult regime, he, in turn, was overthrown in January of 1991 by a coalition of opposing clans, known as the United Somalia Congress. Soon after the revolution, the coalition divided into two groups, one led by Ali Mahdi and the other by Mohammed Farah Aidid. The resulting inter-clan warfare led to the destruction of the agriculture of Somalia, which then led to starvation for many of its people.

One of the main sources of power in Somalia has been the control of food supplies. Hijacked food was used to secure the loyalty of clan leaders, and food was routinely exchanged with other countries for weapons. In the early 1990’s up to 80% of internationally provided food was stolen.
" -- R. Snyder

Satellite Imagery Shows Arctic Ice Still Unmelted - There has been a great deal of speculation about the possibility that the arctic sea ice could, at the worst case, melt entirely, or more realistic, possibly break the record sea ice melt set last year. (Watts Up With That?)

Hathaway updates: SC24 to start late, rapid increase to maximum - I’ve noticed that David Hathaway is not backing down from his previous predictions that SC24 will be a) larger than SC23 and b) the length of SC24 will be approximately the same as previous cycles. (Solar Science)

What's Wrong with the Sun? (Nothing) - Stop the presses! The sun is behaving normally. So says NASA solar physicist David Hathaway. "There have been some reports lately that Solar Minimum is lasting longer than it should. That's not true. The ongoing lull in sunspot number is well within historic norms for the solar cycle." (Science@NASA)

New Research Paper “Can We Reconcile Differences In Estimates Of Carbon Fluxes From Land-Use Change And Forestry For The 1990s?” by Ito et al - There is a new research paper on the assessment of terrestrial carbon fluxes into the atmosphere associated with land use change and forestry [and thanks to Timo Hämeranta for alerting us to it!].

The paper is Ito, Akinori, J. E. Penner, M. J. Prather, C. P. de Campos, R. A. Houghton, T. Kato, A. K. Jain, X. Yang, G. C. Hurtt, S. Frolking, M. G. Fearon, L. P. Chini, A. Wang, and D. T. Price, 2008. Can we reconcile differences in estimates of carbon fluxes from land-use change and forestry for the 1990s? Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Vol. 8, No 12, pp. 3291-3310, June 27, 2008, online (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Coalition Challenges Royal Society 'Climate Report' - "It beggars the imagination that an expert committee can launch a public statement about climate change that is so partial in its arguments and so out of date in its science. (NZ Climate Science)

What an idiot! Big business shows politicians how the planet can be saved - Last week, I shared dinner with some of the most powerful men and women in the world. It was a gathering of chairmen and CEOs of major European and global companies, titans from the energy, mining and retail sectors, all there to discuss the greatest challenge facing civilisation - climate change. Almost as one, they spoke of the need for governments to take action to reverse global warming and for the carbon to be taken out of the world economy. (David King, The Observer)

These 'powerful men' are not worried about gorebull warming, they're just out to pick up free money, tax money thrown away by gullible politicians. Of course they are saying 'government should take action' (and give us money).

Dutch Eye Role as CO2 Capture and Storage Hub - ROTTERDAM - Rotterdam is seeking to extend its role as an energy hub to become a carbon dioxide (CO2) collector for north West Europe, leading players in the Rotterdam Climate Initiative said on Friday. (Reuters)

Hmm... subsidence following extractive industry is definitely a problem, especially for already low-lying regions. Could the Dutch be trying to 'rise above the situation' by re-pressurizing subterranean chambers -- at everyone else's expense? Clever, if that's their intent, manipulating someone else's scam to their benefit.

Ssh! Bigger fish due to climate change: tuna industry - The tuna industry says climate change is bringing benefits.

The chief executive of the Australian Southern Bluefin Tuna Association, Brian Jeffriess, says Port Lincoln crews in South Australia are reporting an excellent quality and size catch.

He says it can be partly attributed to the effects of climate change on the waters of the Great Australian Bight. (Australian Broadcasting Corp.)

Battling global warming leads to fewer mental health beds - Climate change may be real and humanity may be part of the problem, as the International Panel on Climate Change asserts, but how many better uses are there for our money than trying to fix it? (Nigel Hannaford, Calgary Herald)

Climate Science and National Interests - The Indian government has put out a climate change action plan (PDF) that places economic development and adaptation ahead of mitigation (sound familiar?). The report was endorsed by IPCC chairman Rajendra Pachauri:

[Pachauri] said that India has realised the climate change threat. India's climate change action plan recently released by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is a "good policy document" and needs to be implemented.

Interesting, the report's views of climate science are at odds with that presented by the IPCC. (Pielke Jr., R., Prometheus)

Confessions of a (fictional) ‘consensus’ climate scientist - In proportion as religious sects exalt feeling above intellect, and believe themselves to be guided by direct inspiration rather than by a spontaneous exertion of their faculties — that is, in proportion as they are removed from rationalism — their sense of truthfulness is misty and confused.
– George Eliot, “Evangelical teaching: Dr. Cumming.”

After more than year’s intensive research for a book on the bizarre distortions that make up the global warming issue, I now wonder how anyone in the “consensus” climate scientist community sleeps at night. And yet, individually, I’m certain that 99 per cent of them are highly principled human beings.

If more climate scientists spoke out about what they really believe, here’s what I think the silent minority (majority?) might say: (Paul MacRae, False Alarm)

Australia FinMin says no delay in emissions trade - CANBERRA, July 14 - Australia's government said on Monday it would not delay the 2010 kick-off of an emissions trade scheme expected to reshape the A$1 trillion ($971 billion) carbon-intensive economy, as farmers warned against "arbitrary" start dates. (Reuters)

Four scientists: Global Warming Out, Global Cooling In - Alan Lammey, Texas Energy Analyst, Houston

Four scientists, four scenarios, four more or less similar conclusions without actually saying it outright — the global warming trend is done, and a cooling trend is about to kick in. The implication: Future energy price response is likely to be significant. (Watts Up With That?)

Global warming - myth, threat or opportunity - The most critical problem we now confront is not global warming or how to tax emissions, but providing enough affordable fuel to avoid severe recession before alternative energy can become reality. The Lucky Country faces a choice between disaster and a unique opportunity. (Walter Starck, On Line Opinion)

How the Greens Captured Energy Policy - U.S. energy policy -- to stretch the meaning of the term - is appalling. It has been thrown together piece by piece over the decades to create a system that is dysfunctional, over complex, and internally contradictory. It is a system that victimizes American citizens, cripples the U.S. economy, makes the government a laughingstock, and empowers our enemies worldwide. While it's conceivable that somebody could actually design a policy that would do worse, they'd really have to work at it. (J.R. Dunn, American Thinker)

Alaska's 'Frustrated' Governor Palin On Our 'Nonsensical' Energy Policy - Gov. Sarah Palin is a rising political star in Alaska, with an 84% approval rating. A strong advocate of opening her state to more oil drilling, she recently spoke with IBD.

Bush Urges Congress to Open New Areas to Oil Drilling - WASHINGTON - US President George W. Bush urged Congress on Friday to act before its August break to open new areas for oil exploration in the United States to help ease record high oil prices. (Reuters)

Abundant energy will power future growth - Up! Up! Up! The world is consuming more and more energy and, as if by miracle, the amount left to consume grows ever higher. Never before in human history has energy been accessible in greater abundance and in more regions, never before has mankind had more energy options and faced a brighter energy future. (Lawrence Solomon, Financial Post)

Hardly: Environmentalists Block Australia Coal Port - SYDNEY - Environmental protesters in Australia brought the world's biggest coal terminal to a standstill on Sunday by blocking railway lines and chaining themselves to rail cars.

Police said they arrested about 37 people who chained themselves to a train and rail tracks at the port in Newcastle, 100 kilometres (60 miles) north of Sydney to protest over the impact of burning coal on climate change.

A few misguided twits caused police and rail officials some inconvenience while coal loading and port operations were unaffected. Very impressive...

Climate campaigners threaten to invade and shut down power plant - Green activists are vowing to force their way into one of Britain's biggest power stations next month in what will be the most serious clash yet between the burgeoning climate change protest movement and the authorities. (The Independent)

Limit Oil Price or Face More Nuclear Power - Italy - PARIS - Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said on Sunday oil-consuming countries should meet to fix a maximum price they are prepared to pay for oil, warning otherwise they would have to invest heavily in nuclear power. (Reuters)

The Atomic Age Enters a New Dawn - Germany may still be debating whether to abandon its nuclear phase-out plans, but the rest of the world is already moving full steam ahead into expanding the use of nuclear technology. SPIEGEL ONLINE examines a glowing comeback, from Switzerland to China. (Der Spiegel)

The Inexorable Comeback of Nuclear Energy - Oil prices are sky high. Greenhouse gases are driving up temperatures around the world. And many are now looking to nuclear power as the possible solution. Dozens of new reactors are under construction, but in Germany the subject remains taboo -- for now. (Der Spiegel)

Merkel calls for slower nuclear phase-out in Germany - Chancellor Angela Merkel issued a contentious call Sunday to slow Germany's planned phase-out of nuclear energy, amid growing fears it will be impossible to slash greenhouse gas emissions without it. (AFP)

Brown calls for eight new nuclear plants - Britain must build "at least" eight new nuclear power stations during the next 15 years to replace its ageing plants and contribute to a "post-oil economy" that is cleaner and much more efficient than in the era of "cheap energy and careless pollution", Gordon Brown signalled last night. The first new reactors could feed electricity into the national grid by 2017. (The Guardian)

The Great Biofuels Con - Rarely in political history can there have been such a rapid and dramatic reversal of a received wisdom as we have seen in the past 18 months over biofuels – the cropping of living plants, such as soya beans, wheat and sugar cane, to generate energy. (Christopher Booker and Richard North, Daily Telegraph)

Trade minister Lord Jones hits out at green tax on flights - Lord Jones, the outspoken trade minister, has attacked a government plan to raise £2.5 billion through a green tax on flights, claiming that it will damage competitiveness. His criticisms, made in a private letter last month to Angela Eagle, the Treasury minister, are a further embarrassment for Labour over tax policy. (The Times)

Warning: Habits May Be Good for You - A FEW years ago, a self-described “militant liberal” named Val Curtis decided that it was time to save millions of children from death and disease. So Dr. Curtis, an anthropologist then living in the African nation of Burkina Faso, contacted some of the largest multinational corporations and asked them, in effect, to teach her how to manipulate consumer habits worldwide. (New York Times)

A green mood sweeps Scotland - THOUSANDS of Scots have stepped up to the challenge of fighting climate change and are helping our country set a shining example to the rest of the world. (The Scotsman)

Wow: Almost 3,000 people have signed up to some of ten pledges to lead a greener lifestyle, from using the car less to recycling more.

"Eat Smart" teaches children - Not health. Not nutrition. The largest government-funded program teaching our children how to eat “healthy” is teaching them to be afraid — of their foods, their bodies and for their health. And to diet. (Junkfood Science)

More virtual nonsense: Solar shades won't reverse global warming - A proposal to place mirrors in the sky to reflect sunlight away from earth won't give back the climate we had before, says a new study.

Researchers at the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom applied global climate models to predict the effect of using reflective sunshades to reduce the amount of sunlight that enters the earth's atmosphere back.

They compared two future scenarios, both with CO2 levels four times the pre-industrial baseline. In one scenario nothing was done, and in the other, sunlight intensity was reduced to a level that would reduce the global average temperature to pre-industrial levels

The second scenario simulated the use of sunshades, which reduced sunlight by about 4.2%.

"Although we managed to cancel out warming on a global average, what you end up with is some areas that warm up and some that cool down," says Dr Dan Lunt, who led the study, published in Geophysical Research Letters. (Discovery News)

This, again: Solved: Mystery of the sex-change toads: New studies pin blame for decline on farm pesticides - There may have been nothing quite like it since Mr Toad escaped from jail disguised as a washerwoman. But a century after Kenneth Grahame's 1908 classic Wind in the Willows, the warty amphibians have been found to be suffering even greater gender confusion. (The Independent)

Sadly unlikely since the damn things thrive in Australia's northern farming region, household gardens and drainage ditches where such chemicals should be relatively prolific.

Is sewage fertilizer safe? - Worries grow over 'stew' of chemicals spread on farmland (Toronto Star)

Loss of Wolves Causes Major Ecosystem Disruption at Olympic National Park - Olympic National Park was created in 1938, in part “to preserve the finest sample of primeval forests in the entire United States” – but a new study at Oregon State University suggests that this preservation goal has failed, as a result of the elimination of wolves and subsequent domination of the temperate rainforests by herds of browsing elk. (OSU)

Review of Bramwell's Hidden History of Environmentalism: - What follows is a critical and supplemented condensation of three books on the history of environmentalism written between 1985 and 1994 by Oxford History Professor Anna Bramwell. The latter two books were published by Yale University. The books make clear the Third Reich was a radical environmentalist regime. The Nazis promoted organic farming, reforestation, species preservation, naturalism, neo-paganism, holistic science, animal rights, sun-worship, herbalism, anti-capitalism, ecology, anti-urbanism, alternative energy, hysterical anti-pollutionism and apocalyptic anti-industrialism. At the same time the British ecology movement was stridently, treasonously fascist. While these aspects of Bramwell’s writings have been commented on, however inadequately, much less has been said about her treatment of post-WWII environmentalism. Here she provides useful insights into the wholesale corruption of the scientific community, the capturing of key organizations and the manipulation of the mass media by the environmental movement. Bramwell is not a passive observer of this process and conceals key players, interests and motives. (William Walter Kay, Environmentalism is fascism)

July 11, 2008

The Wind Cries 'Bailout!' - Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens launched a media blitz this week to announce his plan for us "to escape the grip of foreign oil." Now he's got himself stuck between a crock and a wind farm. (Steven Milloy,

Energy 101-1 Sources and Uses (.pdf) - Suggesting that giant Solar or Wind Farms represent an Alternative Energy solution for “petroleum addiction” is a sham solution that shows a basic ignorance of the Electricity Sector (T.B. Horgan)

McCain Drops Cap and Trade? - After writing favorably about Sen. McCain’s recent economics speeches, where he clearly shifted toward the supply-side both on tax cuts and producing more energy, I went back last evening and carefully read his 15-page policy pamphlet called “Jobs for America.” Here’s what I found: There is no mention of cap-and-trade. None. Nada. There is a section about “Cheap, Clean, Secure Energy for America: The Lexington Project.” But that talks about expanded domestic production of oil and gas, as well as the need for more nuclear power and coal along with alternative sources. Then it has the $300 million battery and flex-fuel cars. But nope, no cap-and-trade.

So I picked up the phone and dialed a senior McCain official to make sure these old eyes hadn’t missed it. Sure enough, on deep background, this senior McCain advisor told me I was correct: no cap-and-trade. In other words, this central-planning, regulatory, tax-and-spend disaster, which did not appear in Mac’s two recent speeches, has been eradicated entirely — even from the detailed policy document that hardly anybody will ever read.

So then I asked this senior official if the campaign has taken cap-and-trade out behind the barn and shot it dead once and for all — buried it in history’s dustbin of bad ideas. The answer came back that they are interested in jobs right now — jobs for new energy production and jobs from lower taxes. At that point I became satisfied. Even though a McCain presidency might resurrect cap-and-trade, it will be a much different format. More important, the campaign is cognizant of the conservative rebellion against it.

That’s enough for me.

I might add that in this lengthy policy document there’s a strong statement about appreciating the value of the dollar. “John McCain’s policies will increase the value of the dollar and thus reduce the price of oil.”

This is good. It’s not perfect. Neither is McCain’s tax plan and new energy plan. But it is excellent progress. | McCain Drops Cap and Trade? Part 2 (Lawrence Kudlow, Money Politic$)

Carbon rethink may change political climate - BRENDAN Nelson is considering major changes to the Coalition's stance on emissions trading, paving the way for a showdown with his leadership rival Malcolm Turnbull later this month and a sharpened attack on the Rudd Government. (The Australian)

Kyoto's Long Goodbye - One of the mysteries of the universe is why President Bush bothers to charge the fixed bayonets of the global warming theocracy. On the other hand, his Administration's supposed "cowboy diplomacy" is succeeding in changing the way the world addresses climate change. Which is to say, he has forced the world to pay at least some attention to reality.

That was the larger meaning of the Group of Eight summit in Japan this week, even if it didn't make the papers. The headline was that the nations pledged to cut global greenhouse emissions by half by 2050. Yet for the first time, the G-8 also agreed that any meaningful climate program would have to involve industrializing nations like China and India. For the first time, too, the G-8 agreed that real progress will depend on technological advancements. And it agreed that the putative benefits had to justify any brakes on economic growth.

In other words, the G-8 signed on to what has been the White House approach since 2002. (Wall Street Journal)

The G8's crafty climate-change strategy - The G8 has strengthened unity within itself, and shifted climate-change pressure on to its competitors (Benny Peiser, Financial Post)

G8 climate deal is empty promise, says UK government economist - The government's own carbon reduction agency has attacked the climate plan agreed at the G8 summit as not doing "a single thing" to reduce emissions, and accused leaders - including the UK prime minister, Gordon Brown - of "an abrogation of responsibility". (The Guardian)

Road tax: another grab pretending to be green - Gordon Brown's words were unequivocal when challenged in the Commons last month on the impact of the Government's Budget changes in vehicle excise duty (VED). "The majority of drivers will benefit," the Prime Minister told David Cameron.

On the contrary, this week the Treasury has confirmed what The Daily Telegraph has been reporting for months - that almost half of all drivers will be worse off as a result of the changes, while just 18 per cent will be better off. (Daily Telegraph)

'Green' car tax will hit poorest hardest - New "green" car taxes will hit hundreds of thousands of the poorest families, new figures show, as Labour backbenchers told the Government it was heading for a repeat of the 10p tax revolt. (Daily Telegraph)

Saving Earth, one noodle at a time - The Hamburger Helper intervention might burnish Wal-Mart’s CSR credentials, but it makes General Mills look stupid, and undermines the free market more generally (Peter Foster, Financial Post)

Scientists see bright side of working with media - Once upon a time in the world of science, sharing your work with the press was heresy. Journalists, according to the common wisdom, would get it wrong, your research would be distorted, and your colleagues would see you as little more than a shameless grandstander. Scientist popularizers such as the late Carl Sagan, a master of adroit science communication, were excoriated by some of their colleagues for the questionable practice of trying to make science accessible. (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

And now we have the problem of science by media release... do you think is better off, or worse? Personally I think the title should have read: "Unscrupulous see bright side of working the media" and would probably have included a picture of Hansen as a prime exemplar.

The Guardian: a tale of two polls (Harmless Sky)

NASA climatologist 'not interested' in defending own views on global warming at W&M - Dr. James Hansen, NASA climatologist* and major figure in the debate on global climate change, recently refused a paid invitation to speak and debate at the College about his positions on global warming. Braum Katz ('09) -- secretary for the College's Department of Student Rights, director of the newly-created William and Mary Society for Academic Freedom and Diversity and Informer writer -- invited Mr. Hansen via e-mail. (The Informer)

*Hansen's CV lists astronomy but not climatology.

Hmm... the debate is so "over" that NZ's Royal Society has to issue a position statement in "the controversy over climate change and its causes": Climate Change Statement from the Royal Society of New Zealand - Introduction: The Royal Society of New Zealand convenes an expert committee on climate. The controversy over climate change and its causes, and possible confusion among the public, have prompted the committee to produce a statement to make absolutely clear what the evidence is for climate change and anthropogenic (human-induced) causes. (Press Release)

Curiouser and curiouser... why now? Like many insular committees and society administrations they long-ago signed onto the climate belief system, so why issue such a bizarre misstatement now? The climate is not behaving as advertized. The sun isn't behaving as expected. Major economies are not going to drive their populations back to the stone age to appease the people-haters. Perhaps it's because so many scientists and researchers are now putting their heads above the parapet and actually telling the public that carbon dioxide-driven enhanced greenhouse catastrophe is not happening and in fact can never happen on our water-rich world.

But wait, there's more! Cleaner skies explain surprise rate of warming - GOODBYE air pollution and smoky chimneys, hello brighter days. That's been the trend in Europe for the past three decades - but unfortunately cleaning up the skies has allowed more of the sun's rays to pierce the atmosphere, contributing to at least half the warming that has occurred. (New Scientist)

So, if clearer skies cause "at least half the warming" then warming-caused smog is a negative feedback? And if "at least half the warming" is from clearer skies then that's yet another admission that GCM's vastly overestimate the role of atmospheric CO2, isn't it? So gorebull warming cannot possibly be anywhere near the absurd "predictions" generated by said erroneous models, can it? Nor can carbon constraint do anything like advertized either. And Europe's skies haven't gotten a lot dirtier in the last few years, have they, so the recent lack of warming is not due to that then.

More Support for Lack of Aerosols Augmenting Recent Decadal Warming - Back in November 2007, we posted a story on how volcanism affected climate, - producing global cooling after major eruptions, and a warming after lengthy quiet volcanic periods.

In March, we published a story about a paper by David Shiga in the New Scientist Environment Journal that supported that notion based on brightness measurements during lunar eclipses. He showed brighter eclipses in the recent decade due to cleaner atmospheres.

Now a new story in the same journal Cleaner Skies Explain Surprise Rate of Warming, Christian Ruckstuhl of the Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science in Switzerland and colleagues took aerosol concentrations from six locations in northern Europe, measured between 1986 and 2005, and compared them with solar-radiation measurements over the same period. (Joseph D’Aleo, CCM, AMS Fellow)

Special Guest Seminar at CU by Roy Spencer, July 17, 2008:Global Warming: Recent Evidence for Reduced Climate Sensitivity - Dr. Roy Spencer from The University of Alabama at Huntsville will be presenting a special seminar at CU Boulder in the CIRES Auditorium on Thursday, July 17th. The extended abstract is below and a flyer is available for printing and download at the link below. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Public not being told the whole truth about global warming - In 2006, there were predictions in the media that global warming would cause 2007 to be the hottest year on record.

Now think about it, what have you read in the media in 2008 about this? Well, nothing actually. Why?

Well, the answer is simple – because 2007 turned out to be the coolest year recorded for the last 30 years. This, the public was not told.

The public was also not told that, since the warm year of 1998, there has been continuous cooling. What the public is told is that, during the twentieth century, there was a global temperature increase of 0,6 oC.

This is true, but what is left out is that most of the warming took place from 1920 to 1940 and that global temperature fell from 1940 to 1970, prompting announcements in the mid 1970s that a global ice age was about to pounce on us.

During all this, the carbon dioxide content of the atmosphere continued to rise. In fact, atmospheric carbon dioxide (C02) continued to increase after 1940, while atmospheric cooling was taking place. Should that not make people think a bit?

Should people not ponder the issue of whether the theory that man-made C02 is responsible for global warming is actually correct? (Dr Kelvin Kemm, Engineering News)

Polls Apart - One of our major gripes with Environmentalism concerns the claims made by its adherents that it is some sort of popular, grass-roots movement. Time and again, polls suggest otherwise. And yet these polls are rarely, if ever, reported in terms of the undemocratic nature of Environmentalism as it is foisted upon reluctant electorates. Rather, they are presented as evidence that the public are unthinking, selfish morons brainwashed by scheming 'deniers'. (Climate Resistance)

A New Paper “Telescoping, Multimodel Approaches to Evaluate Extreme Convective Weather Under Future Climates by Trapp et al.” - An Overstatement Of What They Actually Accomplished - There is a new paper which assesses the skill of dynamic downscaling [thanks to Dev Niyogi for alerting us to it]. The article is Trapp, R.J., B.A. Halvorson, and N.S. Diffenbaugh, 2007: Telescoping, multimodel approaches to evaluate extreme convective weather under future climates, J. Geophys. Res., 112, D20109, doi:10.1029/2006JD008345. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Why we're the most gullible nation on Earth - The more I hear about the federal government’s love affair with carbon emissions trading (and I shiver when I even think of this topic) the more I reckon, we are the most gullible nation in the entire world.

This carbon trading concept is complicated and rortable; how easy will it be to inaccurately calculate carbon emissions which - given financial repercussions - will cause all sorts of drama.

But, actually, forget all of that. Maybe we can establish a foolproof system, which we can all follow, but the main reason I say that we’re gullible is that the real polluters, the nations whose cities are black on sunny days, are India and China. (Chris Smith, Live News)

The proof of gullibility lies in believing we can control the climate by tweaking a couple of minor variables.

Oh boy... A Third of Corals Face Extinction - FORT LAUDERDALE, U.S., Jul 10 - One third of reef-building corals already face extinction because of climate change, the first-ever global assessment has found. (IPS)

... these disaster nuts need to get a few of their stories coordinated. Gorebull warming poses one of its greatest threats through the mechanism of sea level rise, right? And this assertion is founded on the rise from ice age to present, right? So, from ice age to present seas have risen roughly 120 meters (~400 feet), meaning all the reef areas of concern at present were in fact limestone outcrops stuck up in the dry atmosphere a scant few millennia ago in Earth's recent past and yet corals have been around for hundreds of millions of years. Do you suppose corals colonize suitable habitat according to climatic and sea level changes?

This rubbish, again: Ocean acidification: cooler or not, reason to take CO2 seriously (Steven Watkinson, On Line Opinion)

Note the next item talks of mollusk fossils dating some 500 million years, when atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were 4,000-5,000ppmv, meaning these calcifiers managed any associated reduced alkalinity (acidification) just fine.

Shells - a unique climate archive on the ocean floor - Most people who find a seashell during their summer holiday on the coast will probably not be aware that they have found a unique record of the climate. For Professor Bernd Schöne, however, these hard calcium shells provide a profound insight into the history of our earth and especially into the climate of the past. (University in Mainz)

Methane Formation in the Oceans: New Pathway Discovered - A new pathway for methane formation in the oceans has been discovered, with significant potential for advancing our understanding of greenhouse gas production on Earth, scientists believe. (NSF)

EPA: Smog could get worse with global warming - WASHINGTON -- Global warming could worsen smog and stretch what typically is a summer pollution problem into the spring and fall, government scientists predicted Thursday. (Associated Press)

Brookings Oregon hits record high of 108, but official USHCN climate station says otherwise. - The Oregonian posted this news story below of a new high temperature of 108 being set in Brookings, OR under “breaking news”. The town newspaper, the Curry Coastal Pilot, had this breathless front page story along with a picture of the bank thermometer, even though they have their own weather station downtown. (Watts Up With That?)

More virtual world nonsense: Projected California warming promises cycle of more heat waves, energy use for next century - As the 21st century progresses, major cities in heavily air-conditioned California can expect more frequent extreme-heat events because of climate change. (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)

Nude Socialist seems to have missed the fact temperature was not a variable examined in this research but chose to headline "global warming" anyway: Why global warming is bad for bread - The G8 summit may have agreed to try to cut greenhouse gas emissions - but don't count on that saving your favourite crusty French bread.

German researchers have shown that high CO2 levels in the atmosphere lead to wheat crops throughout Europe with less gluten, the protein in flour that forms the gooey matrix of dough. (New Scientist)

U.N. Warming Program Draws Fire - A United Nations program designed to combat global warming has started doing something no one expected: It is subsidizing fossil-fuel power plants that spew millions of tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere annually.

In the past year or so, 13 big plants in India and China that burn natural gas have won the U.N.'s blessing as aids in the fight against climate change. As a result, owners of the plants earn millions of dollars a year from a U.N. program intended to spur construction of solar panels, wind turbines and other renewable-energy projects.

This unforeseen turn is fanning new doubts about the environmental efficacy of the U.N.'s "carbon trading" program -- the most ambitious effort yet to curb emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases where they're rising the fastest, in the developing world. (Jeffrey Ball, Wall Street Journal)

Bolstering the Buck - The Fed’s weak-dollar policy has had disastrous consequences. Strengthening the greenback must now be a top priority. (John L. Chapman, The American)

Stronger $s also makes oil cheaper.

Our Congressional Energy Mess - High gas prices at the pump are a direct result of inaction by Congress. (Thomas E. Nugent, NRO)

Democrats Dig In as G.O.P. Presses for Oil Exploration in Protected Areas - WASHINGTON — House Democratic leaders took a hard line Thursday against opening up restricted areas to oil production as Republicans threatened to try to keep Congress in session this summer unless they got a vote on new drilling opportunities.

As the political and policy fight over gasoline prices escalated, the White House rejected a call by Democrats to release oil from the nation’s strategic reserves in an effort to lower prices by increasing supply.

Tony Fratto, a White House spokesman, said, “We’d like to see members think a little bit more long term and take advantage of the opportunity that we have to do drilling from our domestic sources.”

Even as some Democratic lawmakers called on Congress to open up restricted areas to drilling, Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the House speaker, said the government must first press oil companies to explore the federal land they have already leased. She dismissed the push to lift the ban on drilling as a Republican effort to shift blame for price increases that occurred during the Bush administration. (New York Times)

As Gas Prices Pinch, Support for Energy Exploration Rises - Amid record gas prices, public support for greater energy exploration is spiking. Compared with just a few months ago, many more Americans are giving higher priority to more energy exploration, rather than more conservation. An increasing proportion also says that developing new sources of energy - rather than protecting the environment - is the more important national priority. (Icecap)

Plugging Up The Pipeline - Anyone who's not sure why gasoline prices are so high has the opportunity to see a real-time reason being played out in public as an environmental group sues over the expansion of a refinery. (IBD)

Gas Pains: Falling U.S. Demand Doesn’t Make a Difference - Now that Americans are finally curbing their oil addiction in the face of high prices—what if it doesn’t matter anymore? (Keith Johnson, WSJ)

Enhance Plans Alberta Carbon Dioxide Pipeline - CALGARY, Alberta - Privately held Enhance Energy Inc said Thursday it plans to build Alberta's first major carbon dioxide pipeline system to ship the greenhouse gas to old oil fields, where it can boost output. (Reuters)

Provided this is viable without taxpayer funds then great -- otherwise, not good.

Chevron: Australia Gas Find Boosts LNG Prospects - PERTH - US energy major Chevron Corp said it has made a significant gas discovery at its Iago field off western Australia, which could help expand its nearby Wheatstone liquefied natural gas (LNG) project. (Reuters)

'Catastrophe Is Nuclear Energy's Standard Operating Procedure' - Debates about climate change at the G-8 meetings in Japan and this week's mishap at a French nuclear facility have Germans revisiting the benefits and dangers of nuclear energy. Deep national divisions on the issue are reflected on the editorial pages. (Der Spiegel)

GE’s Makeover: A Clean-Energy Play? - Is General Electric placing its chips on clean tech?

The conglomerate’s announcement today that it is considering a spin-off of its entire consumer and industrial division—and not just the appliance bits, as earlier reported—meshes with noises coming out of GE all year spelling a bigger emphasis on one part of the business that grows and makes money—clean energy.

Chief Executive Jeff Immelt’s been pleading for more government support for energy policies that would make GE goods from wind turbines to gas turbines more attractive in America. The company, already the U.S. leader in wind turbines, has been making bullish predictions for that business all year. In the hailstorm after first-quarter earnings, GE executives put on a brave face and declared the energy business was the company’s main growth and earnings driver. (Keith Johnson, WSJ)

Subsidy farming isn't business.

Oh... Climate to pay price for low-cost flying - Reckless promotion of aviation as cheap or 'free' has resulted in it being tremendously misused, writes JOHN GIBBONS (Irish Times)

MDS Files $1.6 Billion Suit Over Canadian Reactor Cancellation - MDS Inc. is suing Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. and the federal government, seeking $1.6 billion over the cancellation of the MAPLE reactor project.

The Toronto-based company, a major supplier of nuclear medicine isotopes, said Wednesday it has served AECL with notice that it is seeking arbitration, and at the same time has filed suit alleging negligence and breach of contract. The company's parallel litigation against the government alleges inducement to break a contract and interference with economic relations.

MDS is seeking an order compelling AECL to complete a 40-year supply contract signed with its MDS Nordion division in 2006, and failing that, to pay "significant monetary damages." (Associated Press)

It’s off to fat camp for you! - Rotherham Primary Care Trust, which is in charge of the community’s health care, has identified the fattest kids in town and is shipping them off to fat camp. Can you imagine being a child and fingered by your town to be sent away to a residential facility — all because you’re larger than the other kids? And can you imagine the message being internalized by other little kids, who are now worried they could be taken away next if they gain any weight? (Junkfood Science)

New legal threat to teaching evolution in the US - BARBARA FORREST knew the odds were stacked against her. "They had 50 or 60 people in the room," she says. Her opponents included lobbyists, church leaders and a crowd of home-schooled children. "They were wearing stickers, clapping, cheering and standing in the aisles." Those on Forrest's side numbered less than a dozen, including two professors from Louisiana State University, representatives from the Louisiana Association of Educators and campaigners for the continued separation of church and state.

That was on 21 May, when Forrest testified in the Louisiana state legislature on the dangers hidden in the state's proposed Science Education Act. She had spent weeks trying to muster opposition to the bill on the grounds that it would allow teachers and school boards across the state to present non-scientific alternatives to evolution, including ideas related to intelligent design (ID) - the proposition that life is too complicated to have arisen without the help of a supernatural agent.

The act is designed to slip ID in "through the back door", says Forrest, who is a professor of philosophy at Southeastern Louisiana University and an expert in the history of creationism. She adds that the bill's language, which names evolution along with global warming, the origins of life and human cloning as worthy of "open and objective discussion", is an attempt to misrepresent evolution as scientifically controversial.

Forrest's testimony notwithstanding, the bill was passed by the state's legislature - by a majority of 94 to 3 in the House and by unanimous vote in the Senate. On 28 June, Louisiana's Republican governor, Piyush "Bobby" Jindal, signed the bill into law. The development has national implications, not least because Jindal is rumoured to be on Senator John McCain's shortlist as a potential running mate in his bid for the presidency. (New Scientist)

$4000 fine for TV show over formaldehyde - The makers of consumer affairs programme Target have been ordered to broadcast an apology and pay the Crown $4000 after being found guilty of airing a misleading and alarmist episode on formaldehyde in clothing. (NZPA)

River damming leads to dramatic decline in native fish numbers - Damming of the Colorado River over the last century, alongside introduction of game fish species, has led to an extensive decline in numbers of native fish whilst introduced species have flourished. Scientists have found that physical changes which occur to a river when it is dammed have had an adverse effect only on native fish, due to differences in their life histories. (Society for Experimental Biology)

Gosh, fish whose preferred habitat includes deep, still waters fare better in dammed rivers than those requiring shallow, fast running streams and riffle pools? And they needed a study to figure this out?

EU Eyes GM Soybean to Help Increase Feed Supply - BRUSSELS - EU ministers will consider approving imports of Bayer CropScience's genetically modified (GM) soybeans next week, which if allowed, could help ease a shortage of animal feed, officials say. (Reuters)

China Approves Big Budget for GMO Amid Food Worries - BEIJING - China's cabinet has approved a huge budget for research of genetically modified crops amid growing concerns over food security, a move scientists say may speed up commercial production of GMO rice or corn. (Reuters)

July 10, 2008

Not Evil Just Wrong - A feature length documentary by Phelim McAleer and Ann McElhinney (makers of Mine Your Own Business) which looks at how sanctimony and misunderstanding drove environmentalists to stop Africans from using DDT to help save children’s lives and how the model is repeating itself in the Global Warming debate with even greater tragic consequences.

A False Frenzy on Global Warming - In a remarkable speech before the San Diego Chamber of Commerce, Coleman was very serious about global warming as the consummate fraud. He began by saying that we should give credit where credit is due. There is, he said, an intrinsic connection between Al Gore’s campaign for global warming and $4 per gallon gasoline. “It comes down to….the claim that carbon dioxide in the exhaust from your car and in the smoke stacks of our power plants is destroying the climate of planet earth. What an amazing fraud; what a scam” He then recited Gore’s dire warnings. “The future of our civilization lies in the balance. That’s the battle cry of the high priest of global warming, Al Gore and his agenda driven disciples as they predict a calamitous outcome from anthropogenic global warming.” He said Gore, with a preacher’s zeal, sets out to strike terror into us and our children and make us feel we are all complicit in the potential demise of the planet. (Paul M. Weyrich, National Ledger)

So, how's the Democrats' obsession with global warming hearings going? Congressional Approval Falls to Single Digits for First Time Ever - The percentage of voters who give Congress good or excellent ratings has fallen to single digits for the first time in Rasmussen Reports tracking history. This month, just 9% say Congress is doing a good or excellent job. Most voters (52%) say Congress is doing a poor job, which ties the record high in that dubious category. (Rasmussen Reports)

Check out the propaganda from the UK Met Office's press office

No wonder politicians make such a hash of responding to misanthropes and Gaia cranks if this rubbish is all they have to work with.

At least they got the title right (Number Watch)

How will the Arctic sea ice cover develop this summer? - The ice cover in the Arctic Ocean at the end of summer 2008 will lie, with almost 100 per cent probability, below that of the year 2005 – the year with the second lowest sea ice extent ever measured. Chances of an equally low value as in the extreme conditions of the year 2007 lie around eight per cent. Climate scientists from the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association come to this conclusion in a recent model calculation. (Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres)

They think they can model one variable response a couple of months in advance now? If true that's a really big improvement in modeling capability.

Actually not: Argentine natural ice dam bursts for first time in winter - A natural ice dam in southern Argentina broke open spectacularly on Wednesday -- the first time it has burst in winter, prompting experts to say climate change was the reason. (AFP)

In the Argentinean press:

Victor Jorge Leis, operational director of the National Weather Service of Argentina, expressed doubt about global warming as the cause of the rupture of the glacier. "It is too difficult to establish a connection with the greenhouse effect because temperature has not been much above normal in the region in the last few months. Besides, temperature is just one factor in the ice behavior and wind and oceans tide should not be ignored", he told. Other experts mentioned that the glacier tip is 400 years old, that justifies its fragility". The last time it ruptured in July was in 1951 (coming off a strong La Nina).

There is a news report quoting one of the most important experts in the glacier that has the following headline: "The Perito Moreno rupture is not consequence of greenhouse effect: "Ricardo Villalba, director of the Argentinean Institute of Glaciology, Snow and Environmental Sciences (Ianigla) tells Los Andes newspaper that the position of the ice and the tides can be blamed for this unusual breakup in the winter."

NOAA takes first broad look at soot from ships - Tugboats puff out more soot for the amount of fuel used than other commercial vessels, and large cargo ships emit more than twice as much soot as previously estimated, according to the first extensive study of commercial vessel soot emissions. Scientists from NOAA and the University of Colorado conducted the study and present their findings in the July 11 issue of the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

The primary sources of soot, or small particles of black carbon, are fossil fuel combustion, wildfires, and burning vegetation for agricultural purposes. In the Arctic, an increase in soot may contribute to climate change if shipping routes expand, according to the study. (NOAA)

Real Global Warming Fix - As concern over global warming grows, urban planning advocates have jumped on the bandwagon by claiming cities should reduce their carbon footprints by investing more in transit and compact development. However, these claims are not supported by the data, most of which show that transit and dense development are no more environmentally friendly than autos and low-density suburbs.

This debate is an echo of efforts to reduce toxic air pollution, such as carbon monoxide and smog, which began in 1970. Some said we should encourage people to drive less and take transit more. Others said we should use new technologies to make the cars we drive cleaner. (Randal O'Toole, Cato)

Alberta to Spend C$4 Billion to Cut GHG Emissions - CALGARY, Alberta - The oil-rich Canadian province of Alberta said on Tuesday it will put C$4 billion (US$3.92 billion) into two funds that will be used to pay for carbon capture and storage programs and to boost use of public transit to cut the province's carbon-dioxide emissions. (Reuters)

G8 buries climate pledges -- in time capsule - TOYAKO, Japan — Group of Eight leaders meeting here wrangled over the timeframe to fight global warming, but they have a set deadline when their pledges will be reviewed -- in 100 years.

Their summit documents, along with current newspapers, will be buried in a time capsule at the luxury hotel where they met for three days in the mountain resort of Toyako in northern Japan.

The Windsor Hotel Toya will dig up and open the time capsule on July 7, 2108. (AFP)

Future generations will get a laugh out of the superstitions of the ancients -- in the early 21st Century.

EU Urges Big Polluters, Rich and Poor, to "Get Real" - TOYAKO, Japan - The European Union urged the world's biggest polluters to "get real" on fighting climate change on Wednesday and said all large economies had to play their part. (Reuters)

We could wish everyone would "get real" since then they would find CO2 is not a "pollutant" of the atmosphere but an essential trace gas in desperately short supply. Further they would find that climate change is inevitable and the only means available to deal with it are wealth generation and development.

<chuckle> China, India Oppose 2050 Emissions Cut Goal - France - TOYAKO, Japan - China and India are not ready to sign up to a goal set by the Group of Eight industrial nations to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases by 50 percent by 2050, a French presidential aide said on Wednesday.

But the aide said the two fast-growing Asian economies, which together account for 25 percent of the emissions that scientists say are contributing to global warming, would be willing to take action later. (Reuters)

India: Poor Come First, G8 Must do More on Climate - SAPPORO, Japan - India said on Wednesday its first priority was spurring economic growth so that it could eradicate dire poverty and called on G8 countries to keep their promises to deliver significant green house gas reductions. (Reuters)

India Issues Report Challenging Global Warming Fears (EPW Blog)

Our leaders are in carbon-cloud cuckoo land - For a perfect example of what is meant by "gesture politics" - an empty pledge given solely for effect, which the politician has no hope of honouring - one could not do better than this week's commitment by the G8 leaders on how they want us to fight climate change. (Christopher Booker, Daily Telegraph)

'Serious omission' in G8 summit climate pledge: IPCC chief - The head of the UN's Nobel-winning panel of climate change scientists said Tuesday that a pledge made by G8 leaders to at least halve global warming emissions by 2050 had a major flaw.

The world's wealthiest nations failed to specify a target for cutting greenhouse-gas emissions in the coming decade, a vital stepping stone for meeting the mid-century goal, said Rajendra Pachauri.

"There's a serious omission in terms of not addressing the Bali action plan, which has called for deep cuts in emissions by 2020," Pachauri told AFP in an interview from New Delhi. (AFP)

Guess what Pachy? Your own countrymen won't even sign on to that much? Divisions emerge over G8 climate change goals - Bitter disagreements between rich and poor countries over climate change have emerged into the open as China and India refused to adopt the G8's goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 50 per cent.

This aim was adopted by the world's eight wealthiest nations, including America, during the G8 summit on Japan's northern island of Hokkaido.

When China, India and the leaders of six other large economies joined the G8 for the gathering's final day, they pointedly declined to do the same.

Because America has made action by India and China the crucial condition for curbing its own greenhouse gas emissions, their stance casts doubt over the value of the G8's agreement. (Daily Telegraph)

Say what? Record natural disaster deaths, insurer says - NATURAL disasters killed at least 150,000 people in the first half of this year, more than in the whole of 2004 when south-east Asia was struck by a tsunami, a top insurer said today. (Agence France-Presse)

Well it certainly isn't due to any rising trend in extreme event mortalities, as Anthony Watts pointed out recently:

Cow Burps Help Argentines Study Climate Change - BUENOS AIRES - Argentine scientists are taking a novel approach to studying global warming -- strapping plastic tanks to the backs of cows to collect their burps.

Researchers say the slow digestive system of cows makes them a producer of methane, a potent greenhouse gas that gets far less public attention than carbon dioxide in efforts to fight global warming.

Scientists around the world are studying the amount of methane in cow burps and Argentine researchers say they have come up with a unique way. (Reuters)

Further Documentation Of The Diversity Of Human Climate Forcings Beyond CO2 - In my testimony to a Subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives, I concluded that humans “The human influence on climate is significant and involves a diverse range of first-order climate forcings, including, but not limited to the human input of CO2″.

Support for this perspective has come from a very distinguished scientist at the University of Virginia, Professor Jim Galloway, who was recently awarded the prestigious 2008 Tyler Environmental Prize. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

The Running of the Bull - For those curious about what happened during my debate yesterday with one of the IPCC lead authors . . .

I accommodated the strange changes in our format that my interlocutor had demanded at the last minute: she insisted that I not be allowed to address the audience following her remarks. But there was still Q&A, thankfully. While not the same as a rebuttal, Q&A with an attentive group — and this was a packed house, despite two other conferences being held in Madrid yesterday — often allows the main points of contention to be aired. (Chris Horner, Planet Gore)

An Alternative View of Global Warming (.pdf) (Daniel P. Johnston)

Global warming: slogans of the day (The Reference Frame)

The Democrats’ No-Drill Energy Plan - When it comes to domestic oil production, the Democrats and their Green/Left supporters are all singing from the same deranged hymnal. In May, one of the choir leaders, Democratic Senator Richard Durbin of Illinois declared, “We can’t drill our way to lower prices.” Never mind that 85 percent of America’s Outer Continental Shelf is off-limits to oil and gas exploration. Forget that the offshore areas that John McCain and George W. Bush want to open to exploitation might contain 86 billion barrels of oil and 420 trillion cubic of natural gas. (For reference, the U.S. consumes about 7.6 billion barrels of oil and 22 trillion cubic feet of gas per year.)

Instead, consider the following reasons why the U.S. needs more offshore drilling. (Robert Bryce, Energy Tribune)

Polar bear harassment by oil companies challenged - Two conservation groups filed a lawsuit on Tuesday challenging the Bush administration's decision to let oil companies unintentionally harass or harm polar bears and walruses off the northwestern Alaska coast. (Associated Press)

How do you harass a polar bear? Really, really carefully, if you want to live to tell the tale.

How Canada can feed world oil demand - It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that sky-high energy prices will have an immense impact on the world economy. While Barack Obama and U.S. mayors have recently mused that America might reject oil sands supply from Canada, it is hard to see the U.S. cutting off its nose in face of high gasoline prices, the number one issue faced by voters these days.

Everyone understands that soaring fuel prices will make it much more expensive to heat homes and drive cars. Consumers and businesses will react in all sorts of ways to conserve energy. However, with sustained high oil prices, there is no question that the economy shall be shaped in ways we have not seen previously. (Jack M. Mintz, Financial Post)

Challenge to unlock North Sea oil reserves - UK oil and gas production will fall 5pc over the next five years despite fields in the North Sea and along other parts of the coast containing 25bn barrels of recoverable crude, says the industry group Oil and Gas UK (OGUK) in its latest economic report.

Reserves could be unlocked if the Government worked closely with industry to clear the way for more investment, Malcolm Webb, OGUK chief executive, said yesterday at the launch of the report. (Daily Telegraph)

Please, God, Curse Me with Oil - People blame oil for costing them a lot of money. But the funny thing is that some also blame oil for making them a lot of money. The idea that oil is inherently bad, even when good, reaches its zenith in the so-called “curse of oil.”

According to this classic cliché, oil is the natural resource equivalent of Midas’s touch or W.W. Jacob’s “The Monkey’s Paw.” It blights all those who wish for it and brings only misery and woe to the poor nations that have the misfortune to be sitting atop billions of dollars. (Mac Johnson, Energy Tribune)

'The American Public Is Ready for Nuclear' - David Crane is CEO of NRG Energy, Inc, based in New Jersey. His company is planning to build two new nuclear reactors in Texas, the first such project in almost 30 years in the US. SPIEGEL ONLINE spoke to him about the worldwide nuclear renaissance. (Der Spiegel)

Germans Slowly Warm to Nuclear Energy, Poll Shows - BERLIN - Soaring oil prices combined with fears about energy security and climate change are softening Germans' hostility towards nuclear energy, a new survey showed on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Major waste of energy and finance: Captured: first tonne of 'dirt' from clean coal plant - Australia's first "clean coal" plant is finally up and running, with scientists announcing yesterday that the first tonne or so of carbon dioxide was captured and liquified at Loy Yang power station in Victoria.

A similar plant at Munmorah on the central coast is yet to show results, although the switch was ceremonially flicked last Friday.

The Loy Yang development is "a major milestone for Australia", said the chief of the CSIRO's energy technology division, Dr David Brockway, though many more milestones will have to be passed before it can be rolled out on a large enough scale to make any difference to the nation's greenhouse emissions. (Sydney Morning Herald)

Australia Refinery May Shut on Carbon Scheme - Paper - SYDNEY - One of Australia's biggest oil refineries may be forced to close after the government introduces a carbon-emissions trading scheme, refinery operator ExxonMobil was quoted as saying on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Solar Industry Gets Jitters as Spain Plans Retreat - ZURICH/LONDON - A Spanish bonanza of solar power subsidies may hit a serious brake in September as Madrid prepares to curb support, risking squeezed margins for the global industry, say investors and analysts. (Reuters)

That's the problem when your industry is subsidy farming -- subsidies become unaffordable as more parasites weaken the host nations.

Nine million face 'green' road tax increases - More than 9 million motorists face road tax increases of up to £245 under the Government's "green" car tax plans, the Treasury has admitted. (Daily Telegraph)

Biofuels and biodiversity don't mix, ecologists warn - Rising demand for palm oil will decimate biodiversity unless producers and politicians can work together to preserve as much remaining natural forest as possible, ecologists have warned. A new study of the potential ecological impact of various management strategies published in the British Ecological Society's Journal of Applied Ecology found that very little can be done to make palm oil plantations more hospitable for local birds and butterflies. The findings have major implications for the booming market in biofuels and its impact on biodiversity. (Wiley)

A 'red flag' for expanding biofuels in the tropics - Biofuels, by recycling atmospheric carbon, are a potential boon to the world's ailing climate. But efforts in the tropics to significantly expand biofuel production by replacing tropical forests with oil palm, sugarcane and other agricultural biofuels could, in fact, accelerate climate change, according to a new study published this week (July 9). (UW-Madison)

Is it for real? Cholesterol screening in toddlers and statins from elementary school age? - You’ve no doubt heard the news that “Obese kids may be candidates for cholesterol drugs.” New clinical guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics call for cholesterol screening in children from age two; low-fat dairy from age one in all kids; and cholesterol-lowering drugs, namely statins, for children as young as eight. These clinical guidelines have generated considerable controversy. But there’s something you need to know.

The controversy is not a matter of differences in opinions over the scientific evidence. This is a matter of the scientific evidence versus opinions and agendas. (Junkfood Science)

Dems Love Fox News - Contrary to left-wing myth, Democrats watch FNC more than CNN, MSNBC (News Busters)

Sounds like someone's had enough of weak kneed pretenders: President George Bush: 'Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter' - The American leader, who has been condemned throughout his presidency for failing to tackle climate change, ended a private meeting with the words: "Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter."

He then punched the air while grinning widely, as the rest of those present including Gordon Brown and Nicolas Sarkozy looked on in shock. (Daily Telegraph)

Holy Cows: George W Bush - buffoon or great leader? - Sameh El-Shahat argues that George W Bush has been the most under-rated president... ever. (Daily Telegraph)

G8 summit: Gordon Brown has eight-course dinner before food crisis talks - Gordon Brown and his fellow world leaders have sparked outrage after it was disclosed they enjoyed a six-course lunch followed by an eight-course dinner at the G8 summit where the global food crisis tops the agenda. (Daily Telegraph)

July 9, 2008

White House in Climate Change "Cover Up" - Sen Boxer - WASHINGTON - A leading US Senate Democrat accused the Bush administration on Tuesday of a "cover-up" aimed at stopping the Environmental Protection Agency from tackling greenhouse emissions. (Reuters)

If the Bush Administration are saving us from the EPA (a charge I find hard to believe, to be honest, I just don't have that much faith in them) then they should do so proudly and shout about their good works.

Oh, so it's just this: Cheney's Office Pushed Purge Of Climate Change Testimony - WASHINGTON -- U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney's office was behind a push to censor congressional testimony that global warming poses a danger to the public, a former Environmental Protection Agency official told Congress.

The director of the Centers for Disease Control testified to a U.S. Senate panel last year about the public health effects of climate change in testimony that was heavily edited by the White House's Office of Management and Budget. Until now, Mr. Cheney's office hadn't been publicly linked to the efforts to keep information about climate change out of the public eye.

"The Council on Environmental Quality and the Office of the Vice President were seeking deletions to the CDC testimony," Jason Burnett, formerly an EPA associate deputy administrator, wrote in a letter dated July 6 to U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Barbara Boxer (D., Calif.).

"I read the testimony, checked with EPA scientists, and came to the conclusion that the draft testimony was fundamentally accurate as written," he wrote. (Wall Street Journal)

Storm in a teacup then because all "projections" of warming, let alone absurd claims of attendant health risks should be expunged as completely worthless.

  1. All realistic examinations of societal health clearly show wealth and development are key determinants while ambient temperature is largely an independent variable -- classic example, malaria was endemic to the Arctic Circle and was defeated through much of the Northern Hemisphere through vector control (both direct chemical assault and habitat management drainage projects).
  2. Sanitation, cheap energy, basic service levels and access to affordable health care are key determinants of societal health. Temperature has some seasonal influence (winter 'flu season is a big one, so are cold-induced cardiopulmonary events) but heat-related difficulties are relatively rare and easily managed provided there is sufficient societal wealth and interest.
  3. There's no evidence that any specific global mean temperature is optimal for human health and people inhabit the globe from the Arctic to the Australian desert through a range of average temperatures of more than 55 kelvins (~100 F).
  4. There is no estimate of Earth's expected temperature with a precision equivalent to estimated change in global mean temperature since 1750 -- it's thought to be about 288 kelvins but the current commonly-used models in "stable state" control runs produce a range of roughly 285-290 kelvins and more are tuned to 287 kelvins than not.
  5. This tuning of models to 287 K leads to the bizarre circular claim that "most trusted models produce a value of roughly 14 Celsius (287.15 K), i.e. 57.2 F".
  6. There is no agreed definition of "surface mean temperature" -- see Hansen:
    "Even at the same location, the temperature near the ground may be very different from the temperature 5 ft above the ground and different again from 10 ft or 50 ft above the ground. Particularly in the presence of vegetation (say in a rain forest), the temperature above the vegetation may be very different from the temperature below the top of the vegetation. A reasonable suggestion might be to use the average temperature of the first 50 ft of air either above ground or above the top of the vegetation. To measure SAT we have to agree on what it is and, as far as I know, no such standard has been suggested or generally adopted. Even if the 50 ft standard were adopted, I cannot imagine that a weather station would build a 50 ft stack of thermometers to be able to find the true SAT at its location."
  7. There is no agreement of what to measure -- Hansen again:
    "Again, there is no universally accepted correct answer. Should we note the temperature every 6 hours and report the mean, should we do it every 2 hours, hourly, have a machine record it every second, or simply take the average of the highest and lowest temperature of the day? On some days the various methods may lead to drastically different results."

How then, could the draft testimony be "fundamentally accurate as written" when claiming gorebull warming constitutes some kind of health risk and how could EPA staff calling themselves scientists support such assertions? Too silly for words really.

Credit where credit's due: Cheney’s Office Said to Edit Draft Testimony on Warming (New York Times)

Albeit belatedly Andy Revkin did mention that climate catastrophe skepticism has been "censored" too, specifically mentioning the claims of Roy Spencer. Andy may be a dyed-in-the-wool believer but at least he does his job a bit better than most.

Wikipropaganda: Spinning green. - Ever wonder how Al Gore, the United Nations, and company continue to get away with their claim of a “scientific consensus” confirming their doomsday view of global warming? Look no farther than Wikipedia for a stunning example of how the global-warming propaganda machine works.

As you (or your kids) probably know, Wikipedia is now the most widely used and influential reference source on the Internet and therefore in the world, with more than 50 million unique visitors a month.

In theory Wikipedia is a “people’s encyclopedia” written and edited by the people who read it — anyone with an Internet connection. So on controversial topics, one might expect to see a broad range of opinion.

Not on global warming. On global warming we get consensus, Gore-style: a consensus forged by censorship, intimidation, and deceit. (Lawrence Solomon, NRO)

From South Dakota: two more of NCDC’s “high quality” surface stations today - A Guest Post by: Russ Steele

As one of Anthony Watts’ Surfaces Station Survey volunteers, I visited the stations at Hot Springs, SD and New Castle, WY today and was not impressed with the quality of these stations. And one was recently upgraded by the National Weather Service in January. (Watts Up With That?)

Same mythinformation: New findings closing gaps in global warming research - A buddy recently asked if the effects of global warming could be seen today. Yes, I told him. Scientific studies showing the consequences and trajectory of global warming cross my desk almost weekly. Each tends to eliminate gaps in the science. They also reaffirm the proper course of action.

Research published in May, for example, showed that since 1970 the temperature of the upper troposphere — the region 7.5 to 10 miles above Earth’s surface — has been rising by about 0.65 degrees Centigrade per decade. This is consistent with most climate change models.

Skeptics had previously challenged the validity of these computer models because data gathered by satellites and high-flying weather balloons showed little or no tropospheric temperature increases. This problem is now resolved. (Bob Doppelt, The Register-Guard)

We have dealt with this nonsense many times -- there was a trivial adjustment in MSU-derived temperature anomaly time series and a few allegations but no, there is no resolution and we have many more gaps than science. Mid-troposphere temperature anomaly time series look like this and show no evidence of CO2-induced enhanced greenhouse warming.

Doomed to a fatal delusion over climate change - PSYCHIATRISTS have detected the first case of "climate change delusion" - and they haven't even yet got to Kevin Rudd and his global warming guru.

Writing in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, Joshua Wolf and Robert Salo of our Royal Children's Hospital say this delusion was a "previously unreported phenomenon".

"A 17-year-old man was referred to the inpatient psychiatric unit at Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne with an eight-month history of depressed mood . . . He also . . . had visions of apocalyptic events."

(So have Alarmist of the Year Tim Flannery, Profit of Doom Al Gore and Sir Richard Brazen, but I digress.)

"The patient had also developed the belief that, due to climate change, his own water consumption could lead within days to the deaths of millions of people through exhaustion of water supplies."

But never mind the poor boy, who became too terrified even to drink. What's scarier is that people in charge of our Government seem to suffer from this "climate change delusion", too. (Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun)

No? Really? New study finds that some plants can adapt to widespread climate change - While many plant species move to a new location or go extinct as a result of climate change, grasslands clinging to a steep, rocky dale-side in Northern England seem to defy the odds and adapt to long-term changes in temperature and rainfall, according to a new study by scientists from Syracuse University and the University of Sheffield (United Kingdom) published online in the July 7 issue of the Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

How the blazes do they think plant species have survived the climatic changes of the last few million years of glaciation with intermittent mild periods?

Fertile ground for exploitation - Adding iron to the seabed to generate the growth of microscopic plants is the latest solution to dealing with CO2. But is it safe? (Chris Baker, The Guardian)

That's not "dealing with" CO2 but rather wasting an immensely valuable resource -- just don't do it.

EPA Must Be Licking Its Chops - I’m reading one of the leaked versions (May 30 draft) of the EPA’s forthcoming Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR), “Regulating Greenhouse Gas Emissions under the Clean Air Act.” The ANPR presents information relevant to, and solicits public comment on, how EPA should respond to the Supreme Court’s decision in Massachusetts v. EPA.

Among scores of issues discussed, EPA raises the question of what level of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction from the transportation sector would be “appropriate” if (as seems very likely) the agency decides that GHG emissions from new motor vehicles endanger public health and welfare. (Marlo Lewis, Planet Gore)

Policy Consequences Of The Narrow IPCC Perspective On The Role Of Humans In The Climate System - The focus on carbon dioxide emissions as the dominate human climate forcing is resulting in the misleading of policymakers. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Analysis: G8 sidestep the issue on climate change - That the G8's newly stated "goal" of a 50-per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2050 is deliberately vague in its wording almost goes without saying. No-one really expected the leaders of the world's major economies to be taking the lead on climate change, especially with George W Bush still in the White House.

Politically, however, today's G8 statement on climate change is a carefully worded text that gives each G8 delegation something to go home with even it fails to give any satisfaction to environmental campaigners. (The Times)

Times reporters don't seem to know much about climate negotiations and/or treaties, do they: "instead putting the onus on the negotiations for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the successor treaty to the Kyoto Protocol which is due to be wrapped up at a UN summit in Copenhagen next year." Actually Kyoto is an appendage to UNFCCC and the Framework Convention, spawned by the Rio Earth Summit in 1992 and which entered into force in March 1994, is most definitely not some Kyoto successor treaty but the ridiculous parent framework under which new climate treaties are negotiated. The stupid thing wouldn't exist at all had George H. W. Bush not allowed himself to be railroaded by then-British PM Margaret Thatcher (41 has much to answer for).

Big Emerging Nations Demand G8 Greenhouse Gas Cuts - SAPPORO, Japan - Five big emerging economies on Tuesday staked out tough positions on greenhouse gas emissions and food security, ahead of talks on climate change with rich countries in the Group of Eight. (Reuters)

G8 Set for Showdown With Poorer States Over Climate - TOYAKO, Japan - Big emerging economies will come under pressure on Wednesday to respond in kind to an initiative by rich countries to work towards a target of at least halving their global greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. (Reuters)

G8 Papers Over Differences on Climate Change - TOYAKO, Japan - G8 nations, papering over deep differences, said on Tuesday they would work toward a target of at least halving global greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 but emphasised they would not be able to do it alone. (Reuters)

Japan PM: Emissions-Goal Base Year is Current Levels - TOYAKO, Japan - Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda said on Tuesday the base year for a goal of at least halving global greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 -- agreed on by Group of Eight leaders on Tuesday -- was "current levels".

That would appear to be at odds with the position of the European Union and climate change activists, who insist that base year should be 1990. (Reuters)

A deal on climate change - but then the backlash - US signs up to 50% target but emerging economies demand more (Patrick Wintour and Larry Elliott, The Guardian)

G8 leaders' climate change plan gets frosty reception - G8: LEADERS OF the world's richest countries offered hope on climate change yesterday with the announcement of a highly ambiguous "shared vision" to halve global CO2 emissions by 2050.

The deal, worked out after tense all-night talks, was immediately condemned by environmentalists who say it does not go far enough, but Group of Eight (G8) host Japan hailed it as a milestone. (Irish Times)

California Wildfires: not global warming, but business as usual for nature - There has been the usual blame game tossed about in some news stories and letters to the editor about the fires in California being caused by “global warming”. To that I say, “bunk”. The main reason is a shift in the regional climate due to changes in the Pacific Ocean. Specifically the large La Nina we saw this year, and the shift in Pacific Decadal Oscillation, which last shifted from Cool to warm phase in 1977. (Watts Up With That?)

Outstanding: Satellite view of cloud tops might warn of storms brewing - For three years a new way to use data collected by NOAA weather satellites has been giving North Alabama short-term warnings of "pop-up" thunderstorms. (University of Alabama in Huntsville)

In the virtual realm: How intense will storms get? New model helps answer question - A new mathematical model indicates that dust devils, water spouts, tornadoes, hurricanes and cyclones are all born of the same mechanism and will intensify as climate change warms the Earth's surface. (University of Michigan)

On California's Mount Shasta, glaciers buck climate-change trend and keep getting larger - MOUNT SHASTA, Calif. - Global warming is shrinking glaciers all over the world, but the seven tongues of ice creeping down Mount Shasta's flanks are a rare exception: They are the only long-established glaciers in the lower 48 states that are growing. (Associated Press)

Gosh! Do you suppose that's because it's a matter of precipitation rather than temperature?

Intensified ice sheet movements do not affect rising sea levels - Meltwater is rapidly increasing the tempo of glacial movements on the rim of the Greenland ice sheet. Over the long term, however, this process is interrupted as meltwater drains away via broad channels, as a result of which ice movement decreases once again. Ultimately, this is not a cause of accelerated sea level rise. (Utrecht University)

Middle Age lessons for the modern struggle against climate change - They were smelly, short on science and heavily superstitious, but the Middle Ages may have fundamental lessons for the modern world's struggle to deal with climate change.

Although terrified of pestilence and a Biblical apocalypse, the medieval world had a commonsense attitude to freak weather and natural disasters, according to the world's biggest gathering of specialists on the centuries between 600 and 1500AD.

Skilful flood management and far closer links with nature than the 21st century are among the advantages highlighted by the 14th International Medieval Congress which has brought 1,500 scholars from across the world to a rain-soaked Leeds. (The Guardian)

More than 500 years ago people had sense enough not to build in flood-prone areas... what happened?

Global Warming Will Push Russia to Destruction - WWF - MOSCOW - Global warming will sow destruction across Russia and ex-Soviet states, a report said on Tuesday after the world's richest countries issued targets on harmful emissions that environmentalists criticised as too soft.

The 52-page report -- written by green group WWF and British charity Oxfam -- described a grim picture of social, ecological and economic collapse in the world's biggest country and its former empire unless the world took urgent action. (Reuters)

Do you suppose anyone but lazy reporters bother with their ridiculous pronouncements any more?

Carbon tax or cap and trade? - Carbon tax or cap-and-trade? Would you rather be shot to death or strangled? Wouldn't you prefer the choice to go on living? Similarly, we have to ask if we really have only a choice between two expensive schemes to restrict carbon dioxide emissions. (Telegraph-Journal)

From CO2 Science this week:

The Long-Term Response of Forests to Atmospheric CO2 Enrichment: How long can a forest that is located on low-fertility soil continue to show enhanced growth in response to elevated levels of atmospheric CO2?

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
Was there a Medieval Warm Period? YES, according to data published by 559 individual scientists from 337 separate research institutions in 38 different countries ... and counting! This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from China. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Medieval Warm Period (Regional - Antarctica): What do we know about the medieval climate of Antarctica? ... and why do we care?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Blackgram, Castor Bean, Loblolly Pine, and Smooth Cordgrass.

Journal Reviews:
Solar-Induced Warming Over the 20th Century: How great was it?

Near-Shore Tropical Cyclones of the Eastern North Pacific: How have they varied over the past 85 years?

Evidence of Symbiont Shuffling in Great Barrier Reef Corals in Response to Warming-Induced Bleaching: What has it revealed about the ability of earth's corals to cope with global warming?

Methane Emissions from Rice Paddy Soil: How are they affected by atmospheric CO2 enrichment and nighttime warming?

The Respiratory Response of Ectomycorrhizal Fungi to Warming: What is it? ... and why is it important? (

Documentation Of The Landscape Changes In the Eastern United States - Climate Science has weblogged on the paper (e.g. see)

Steyaert, L.T., and R.G. Knox, 2008: Reconstructed historical land cover and biophysical parameters for studies of land-atmosphere interactions within the eastern United States, J. Geophys. Res., 113, D02101, doi:10.1029/2006JD008277.

This weblog reproduces several of the figures to illustrate how important landscape changes have been in the eastern United States. There are three figures: for albedo (the fraction of sunlight that is reflected back into space; for LAI (leaf area index which is the area of vegetation leaves per unit area); and the surface aerodynamic roughness (which is a measure of how irregular and high the vegetation is).

These figures show that the alteration of this region by human activity has been very substantial. The role that this landscape change produces on climate is still being investigated using models, but it is obvious that it must be significant. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Whoa, revelation! Higher CO2 levels may be good for plants: German scientists - The dangerous rise in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere may be troubling scientists and world leaders but it could prove to be a boon for plants, German researchers said Tuesday.

Increasing exposure to carbon dioxide appears to boost crop yields, Hans-Joachim Weigel of the Johann Heinrich von Thuenen Institute for rural areas, forestry and fisheries in the central city of Brunswick told AFP.

"Output increased by about 10 percent for barley, beets and wheat" when the plants were subjected to higher levels of carbon dioxide, Weigel said.

The Thuenen Institute, which has been monitoring the phenomenon in fields since 1999, trains CO2 jets on the plants so the gas reaches 550 parts per million in the air around them -- the level expected in the atmosphere by 2050. (AFP)

G-8, CO2 And The Garden Of Eden - A study on the impact of rising CO2 levels finds a future world of thriving agriculture and lush vegetation. Carbon dioxide, the gas some see as a threat, is indeed the key to life on Earth. (IBD)

An Alternative View of Global Warming (.pdf) (Daniel P. Johnston)

LIEBERMAN: No drilling? No excuses - With gasoline prices above $4 a gallon and no relief in sight, it makes perfect sense to open some of America's extensive off-limits areas to oil drilling. Yet Congress refuses to budge, citing a number of weak excuses. (Ben Lieberman, Washington Times)

Stop The Scapegoating Of Oil Speculators And Give Them Good Reason To Go Short - Despite Congress' periodic hauling of weak-kneed oil executives before their committees to charge them with collusion and price-gouging, subsequent federal investigations turn up no evidence to support the charges.

Now oil company executives are getting a bit of a respite as Congress has turned its attention to crude-oil speculators, blaming them for high oil prices and calling for tighter control over commodity futures trading.

Let's look at the futures market and for simplicity use corn futures. While corn is different from oil, both obey the laws of supply and demand, just as humans are very different from bricks but both obey the laws of gravity. (Walter E. Williams, IBD)

The Market Is Responding to the Oil Shock - The leaders of the G-8 and of major developing countries will discuss how to respond to energy security and climate change tomorrow. Their first instinct will likely be to propose new regulations. Yet market forces may already be solving these problems, as high oil prices drive a shift away from the polluting, petroleum-fueled internal combustion engine to cleaner forms of transportation.

That's a change worth cheering, even if oil prices are painful in the meantime. Oil is the United States' principal transportation fuel, and the source of a third of the country's greenhouse gas emissions. Other major countries are similarly dependent on oil for transportation. As prices have risen, worries about energy security and long-term climate effects have reached a fever pitch.

History teaches that innovation directed by markets can solve problems such as these. In New York at the end of the 19th century, horses were the main form of transport – and a major source of pollution. As many as 200,000 horses each produced 15 to 35 pounds of manure per day. Manure piles along the roads and in stables produced vast numbers of flies, an important vector for infectious diseases such as typhoid fever. Horses became increasingly expensive, thanks to rising prices for hay, oats and the urban land required for stables.

Initially the automobile wasn't much competition for the horse. Then, around the turn of the century, a series of innovations involving the internal combustion engine and manufacturing (mass production, assembly lines and interchangeable parts) improved performance, reliability and costs. As car prices fell, the horse, the manure and the "typhus fly" were done for. (Rod Hunter, Wall Street Journal)

Preparing for Snow in July - Even in midsummer’s heat, residents of the eight million or so households with oil-fired furnaces — more than three-fourths of them in the Northeast — are worried about winter. The price of heating oil has jumped almost 40 percent this year. Unless prices dive, which seems unlikely, many customers will face the double-whammy of higher fuel prices for their homes and cars.

People with money in the bank were able to contract months ago for next winter’s oil at then-lower prices. But millions of cash-strapped families will need help. With heating oil now at $4.50 a gallon, compared with $2.50 a year ago, a typical New England homeowner using about 600 gallons a year would see the winter fuel bill rise to $2,700, or nearly $500 a month during the coldest months. (New York Times)

EU States Endorse Steps to Cut Standby Power Use - BRUSSELS - European Union states approved a proposal for dramatic cuts in standby electricity consumption by household and office electrical appliances, the European Commission said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Australia Activists to Block World's Top Coal Port - CANBERRA - Environmentalists plan to block one of two rail lines into the world's biggest coal export port in Australia at the weekend, amid wrangling by rich nations over efforts to combat climate change, they said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Frequently activists want to put us on a war footing as they dramatize their pet issue and, curmudgeon that I am, I'm beginning to agree with them. Of course, my issue is poverty and indeed we do need to wage total war on poverty and privation. As such we should view economic and industrial saboteurs as enemies of State and Humanity -- species traitors, in fact. We all know the penalty for traitors in time of war: summary execution. Therefore anyone interfering with the flow of goods and services essential to wealth generation and the benefit of Humanity should be summarily executed, no? This would also have the significant benefit of completely eliminating absurd gorebull warming panic mongering and profiteering. Hey! I'm beginning to see the attraction of this game :)

EU Transport Chief Eyes Tough Tolls, Less Pollution - STRASBOURG, France - The European Union's transport chief proposed on Tuesday new measures to make road and rail more environmentally friendly across the bloc, such as higher congestion charges for trucks and reducing train noise. (Reuters)

EU Lawmakers Approve Deal on Airline CO2 Emissions - STRASBOURG, France - To howls of protest from airlines, European Union lawmakers approved a deal with governments on Tuesday to include aviation from 2012 in the EU's Emission Trading Scheme, a key tool to fight climate change. (Reuters)

Pollution limits imposed on airlines by MEPs - The cost of flights throughout Europe are to rise after MEPS voted to impose pollution limits on the airline industry. (Daily Telegraph)

Johnson Scraps Plan to Tax London Gas Guzzlers - LONDON - Mayor Boris Johnson has scrapped plans to increase the central London congestion charge to 25 pounds a day for owners of gas-guzzling cars. (Reuters)

Figures: Wind surge poses a risk to salmon and reveals flaws in BPA's power-regulating system - With Columbia Gorge turbines pumping out extra electricity, the agency had to quickly adjust its hydro generation (The Oregonian)

Oh dear... Fringe autism treatment could get federal study - Pressured by desperate parents, government researchers are pushing to test an unproven treatment on autistic children, a move some scientists see as an unethical experiment in voodoo medicine. (Associated Press)

Is this some kind of warped joke? Toddlers who dislike spicy food 'racist' - Toddlers who turn their noses up at spicy food from overseas could be branded racists by a Government-sponsored agency. (Daily Telegraph)

Hollywood launches a corporate chainsaw massacre - It might seem over-serious to seek too much cultural significance in summer movies starring, respectively, an alcoholic superhero, a Mossad hairdresser and a love-struck robot. Nevertheless, Hancock, You Don’t Mess With the Zohan and Wall-E each — typically — present Big Business as feckless and/or villainous. Corporations in these films range from insufficiently socially responsible, through criminally oppressive, to handmaidens of environmental apocalypse. (Peter Foster, Financial Post)

Scientists discover new reefs teeming with marine life in Brazil - Scientists announced today the discovery of reef structures they believe doubles the size of the Southern Atlantic Ocean's largest and richest reef system, the Abrolhos Bank, off the southern coast of Brazil's Bahia state. The newly discovered area is also far more abundant in marine life than the previously known Abrolhos reef system, one of the world's most unique and important reefs. (Conservation International)

Nothing's wrong except nothing's wrong? Report: Healthy Marshall Islands' Coral Reefs Face New Threats - "Today, coral reef ecosystems in the Marshall Islands are in excellent condition. The outer and less populated atolls in particular support healthy and diverse communities of marine life. However, in recent years, the coral reefs in the Marshall Islands have become increasingly threatened by pressures of fisheries, climate change and sea-level rise, increased urbanization and a loss of cultural traditions."

A 569-page report, the third in an ongoing series of assessments of the condition of coral reef ecosystems in the United States and Pacific Freely Associated states by NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program, evaluates the impacts of thirteen major threats and summarizes the current conservation management activities being implemented in the 15 jurisdictions. (yokwe online)

Potentially a huge deal: New Spray Improves Plants' Cold Tolerance - Studies indicate a spray co-developed by a University of Alabama scientist increases plants’ tolerance of cold temperatures by several degrees. (University of Alabama)

Given the sun's recent reluctance this is the kind of research desperately needed rather than the misguided focus on gorebull warming.

High Prices Nudge Europe Nearer to GM Food - ZURICH - Like many in Europe, Switzerland's Coop supermarkets do not specify whether goods are genetically modified -- none are. But a wave of food inflation may help wash away resistance to "Frankenstein foods". (Reuters)

Researchers study ground cover to reduce impact of biomass harvest - Ground cover may be one workable method to reduce the effects of erosion that future biomass harvests are predicted to bring. Iowa State University researchers are looking at ways to use ground cover, a living grass planted between the rows of corn, in production farming. (Iowa State University)

July 8, 2008

At least they’re admitting it - Here’s the problem. You are a scientist, working on measuring the levels of aragonite in ocean water. It’s not very sexy and nobody beyond a small cadre seems to care. But it’s grant time and you and your team are “figuring out how to make the issue more potent” so that you can bring in the bucks.

How do you do it?

The first thing you should immediately consider these days is “turning up the heat on the issue through the media.” However, convening a press conference on “The Importance of Aragonite in Ocean Water” is unlikely to interest even the New York Times.

You need to be clever. Your job in “expanding awareness” has to start with a snappier moniker. You need a term that is “easy to comprehend” and, if you’re lucky, sounds “alarming.”

Renaming is thus “a critical step.”

So you ponder. Then you recall that aragonite levels are related to the amount of diffused carbon dioxide in ocean water. Some chemistry helps: when CO2 dissolves in water it lowers that water’s pH. And what is lowering pH sometimes called? Acidification!

Success! Not only is this a fantastically frightening term, it drives “home the idea that carbon dioxide [i]s a pollutant.” (William M Briggs, Statastician)

Ocean Acidification: Photographs from Bob Halstead and a Note from Floor Anthoni - The shallows near Dobu Island off Papua and New Guinea have active underwater fumaroles pumping out virtually pure CO2. The sea grass is extraordinarily lush and healthy and there is very healthy coral reef a few metres away. (

Infinite Regress - In a recent post, we looked at some of Green MEP Caroline Lucas's arguments for action on climate change. One of them has stuck with us as especially absurd, and merits further attention:

this planet has finite resources. You cannot go on growing indefinitely on a finite planet.

This appeal to 'physics' pops up frequently in environmental debates. Interestingly, it's a tactic also popular with Creationists and their ilk, who cite Newton's second law of thermodynamics to suggest that evolution contradicts fundamental physical truths. In each case, a woolly argument about how the world should be is patched up with sciency-sounding facts, figures and laws. This is not the tactic of groups confident about their political position; it is a sign of the desperation of groups that are failing to capture the imagination of the world's population. (Climate Resistance)

Taking Us Back To Mud Huts And Loincloths - A prominent journalist doesn't just want our air conditioners turned down. He wants them off. This is the sort of nonsense we're getting from the anti-energy, global-warming-is-making-us-sick left. (IBD)

Why so much climate change talk is hot air - THERE is one constant surrounding the global warming debate: There is no shortage of self-styled climate experts to make diabolical predictions and cast shadows of doom and gloom.

Apparently global warming will expose Australians to tropical disease from which their previously temperate climate offered protection. Never mind that malaria was previously endemic through Europe during the Little Ice Age of the 17th century. The disease was rife through Russia until the middle 20th century, with thousands dying at Archangel on the Arctic Circle. The climate experts making the dire predictions seem to not recognise that disease is eradicated by good public health management, not by regulating the climate.

Then we have those who predict the demise of our beautiful natural environment from increased carbon dioxide levels and warmer temperatures. Never mind that our natural biosphere evolved in an earlier climate when the concentration of carbon dioxide, the natural food of plants but now demonised as a pollutant, was much higher than now. The way that most plants respond to increased carbon dioxide is much like people after enforced starvation — they take in more food and grow bigger! (William Kininmonth, The Age)

Garnaut Report - Three Key Questions were Ignored (.pdf) - Will Australia and New Zealand be left hanging like dead dingoes on a barbed wire fence?

An Australian Group of Global Warming Sceptics today claimed that the Garnaut Report had totally ignored the three key questions in the debate. (Carbon Sense Coalition)

Australia Could Delay Emissions Trade Beyond 2010 - CANBERRA - Australia's government said on Monday it could delay introduction of a planned emissions trading system expected to boost fuel and power prices, as polls showed its record recent popularity slipping.

The centre-left government's top climate advisor, economist Ross Garnaut, last week unveiled a model for how the trading system could operate after its planned 2010 introduction, warning climate shift could devastate Australia's fragile environment.

But the treasurer of the most populous New South Wales state, Michael Costa, accused Garnaut of delivering a "Chicken Little" report predicting the sky could fall in on the economy and iconic tourist lures such as the Great Barrier Reef.

"We don't need Chicken Little, we need details," Costa, a left-of-centre lawmaker, said. (Reuters)

Labor rejects climate caution pleas - LABOR will forge ahead with a 2010 start-up date for an emissions trading scheme in defiance of pleas by the Opposition and mining sector that it wait for the finalisation of a global climate change agreement or risk smashing the economy.

Climate Change Minister Penny Wong yesterday rejected delays in attaching a price on carbon, saying Australia had to "get moving" to catch up to other nations, including those in the EU, which already had emissions trading.

But Senator Wong hinted at Labor's solution to the growing political tension surrounding the ETS plan - a slow-starting scheme that will have a "moderate and measured" effect in its early years. (The Australian)

For reasons not clear we have had a lot of requests for Australian editorial cartoons dealing with AGW & carbon dioxide emissions trading. Fair enough, here's a series from the AGW-believing/promoting Murdoch stables. The final cartoon in the presented series is only too true since anthropogenic catastrophic climate change is strictly limited the virtual realms of PlayStation® Climatology, although it is unlikely the cartoonist is aware of that.

Australian climate report like 'disaster novel': minister - Heatwaves, less rain and increased drought are the likely prospect for Australia, according to a new report on climate change which the agriculture minister said read like a "disaster novel".

The report, by the Bureau of Meteorology and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, found that the world's driest inhabited continent is likely to suffer more extreme temperatures due to climate change. (AFP)

Like a disaster novel only significantly less plausible. Among the glaring internal inconsistencies we have climate models predicated on enhanced greenhouse forcing due to increasing atmospheric water vapor feedback magically drying the atmosphere and causing droughts, which makes no sense at all (for the record, Australia suffers mega droughts during ice ages because it lacks any appreciable mountain ranges [highest point is only 7300'] hence the bulk of rainfall on the continent is monsoonal or cyclonic).

Fran O'Sullivan: Public want focus on cost of living, not ETS - Prime Minister Helen Clark's threat to campaign on climate change if her Government can't get parliamentary support to pass the emissions trading scheme (ETS) legislation could well backfire.

A major online survey finds the public feels most of the Government's efforts are going into tackling climate change issues and supporting families and children. But what they want the policy makers to focus more attention on, is the hot-button issues like the cost of living, the health service and reducing crime. (New Zealand Herald)

NYC to Spend US$2.3 Bln to Cut Greenhouse Gases - NEW YORK - New York City will spend US$2.3 billion to cut greenhouse gases emitted by municipal buildings and operations in order to cut the emissions by 30 percent in 2017, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said on Monday.

The program puts in place one of the independent mayor's so-called PlaNYC initiatives, a series of proposals he said were needed to manage the city's growth in the next few decades. (Reuters)

Climate Change May Muddy Better-Than Bottled New York Tap Water - July 7 -- New York City's tap water, so pure residents swear it tastes better than bottled, may become a casualty of climate change as warmer temperatures threaten to spoil the mountain reservoirs supplying 9 million people.

Water from the largest unfiltered delivery system in the U.S. may become dirtier as weather patterns shift, bringing stronger storms to the region, the city's Department of Environmental Protection said in a May report. Heavy rains muddy reservoirs and wash in bacteria and parasites. That may force New York to spend $10 billion on filtration, the DEP said. (Bloomberg)

Increasing Intense Storms? - One claim from the global warming advocates we hear over and over is that severe storms are increasing in frequency and intensity. If pressed on this matter, they will concede that considerable debate surrounds trends or model predictions for hurricanes or tornados, but they insist that intense precipitation has definitely been increasing thanks to global warming. To buttress their arguments, they will point out that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) states in their most recent summary that “The frequency of heavy precipitation events has increased over most land areas, consistent with warming and observed increases of atmospheric water vapour.” Furthermore, IPCC states that the observed trend over the most recent five decades is “likely,” that the trend is caused in some part by humans is “more likely than not,” and that the trend will continue this century is “very likely.”

We have covered this topic many times in the past, and finding an increase in heavy precipitation is like finding a ghost. It shows up in some regions, not others. The same time series of precipitation can reveal the signal using one set of defensible analyses, but it disappears using some other equally defensible statistical techniques. Nonetheless, the global warming crusaders are quick to blame any unusual heavy precipitation event on the build up of greenhouse gases, and they are very good about garnering press coverage to highlight their point of view. (WCR)

Alarmists use weather to promote global warming hoax - Claims that recent severe weather and flooding in the US are proof of human CO2 impacts on global climate are scientific nonsense. They are part of a pattern of keeping weather and climate issues in the public mind. (Dr. Tim Ball, CFP)

No Need to Give Up Meat to Save Planet, Says Blair - LONDON - Former Prime Minister Tony Blair has distanced himself from the idea that he should become a vegetarian as a way of highlighting the dangers of deforestation in his role as a climate change campaigner. (Reuters)

UAH: June 2008: still negative anomaly - According to UAH MSU, the global temperature anomaly in June 2008 was -0.11 °C, up from -0.18 °C in May 2008.

A similar warming from -0.083 °C in May 2008 to +0.035 °C in June 2008 has been reported by RSS MSU, too.

But let us focus on UAH MSU. Anomaly-wise, June 2008 was the third coldest month of the 21st century so far, after May 2008 and July 2004 (that had -0.12 °C, almost the same temperature). (The Reference Frame)

How not to measure temperature, part 66 - The MMTS system introduced by the National Weather Service in the mid 1980’s continues to be the Achilles heel of the surface observation network. Intrepid surfacestations volunteer Don Kostuch finds another poorly sited USHCN station in America’s midwest. (Watts Up With That?)

Imagine there's no warming … - It seems clear that the world's political and cultural and financial elite are determined to do whatever is necessary in their minds to lower the temperature of the planet.

When you cut through all the climate-change hysteria, that's what is being proposed.

Taxes will be raised, carbon-dioxide production will be punished, income will be redistributed, people will be told what they can do with their lives and what they cannot do, live-saving and life-enhancing development will be curtailed. And all of this coercion will be directed by those who know best – a global elite who collectively know less about science than the average American high school student in the 1950s.

I suspect most of them don't even believe their dire predictions about global warming. I'm quite certain they understand the riff-raff simply need a rationalization for how they are about to be exploited in ways that would have been shocking during the days of feudalism. (Joseph Farah, WND)

IMF & Climate Change: Over-Presumption & Myopia - "This latest IMF publication...mirrors, and serves to confirm and reinforce, the over-presumptive and unresourceful treatment of climate change issues by the Fund’s member governments and in particular by its clients in national capitals...In relation to climate change issues, a new framework is needed - less presumptive, more inclusive, more watertight professionally, and more attuned to the huge uncertainties that remain." Professor David Henderson. (NZ Climate Science)

Guest Weblog By Gerbrand Komen - Please, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Gerbrand Komen. I retired as Director of Climate Research at the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) (but my old home page is still online The first 15 years of my career I worked on ocean waves. Later my interest shifted to air/sea interaction and climate. In 2006 our group developed a set of Regional Climate Change Scenarios for the Netherlands, based on an analysis of global GCMs and a smart combination of dynamical and statistical downscaling. From 2001 until 2007 I was representative of The Netherlands with IPCC.

Roger Pielke sr invited me to contribute a guest weblog on the occasion of an e-mail exchange on the Seamless Prediction Scheme discussed at the World Modelling Summit for Climate Prediction. Climate Science already noted that testing a model on seasonal timescales will not be able to reveal shortcomings in the description of feedbacks that act on slower timescales, and therefore will not inform us of the skill at making longer term forecasts. I believe this is perfectly clear and trust that Tim Palmer and his modellers will separately address the problem of slow feedbacks. There is not much I can add to this, except perhaps a few philosophical remarks about climate prediction. (Climate Science)

Ice dam to break prematurely on Argentine glacier - A huge ice dam on Argentina's Perito Moreno glacier will break apart for the first time in the southern hemisphere winter, likely as a result of global warming, scientists and environmentalists said Monday.

The 60-meter (yard) high wall of ice holding back a portion of Lake Argentina breaks apart spectacularly in cycles of one year to several years, but always in summer, and is one of Patagonia's top tourist attractions. (AFP)

Prematurely or late for last summer? The last southern hemisphere summer was almost non-existent with unusually cold conditions (must be that global warming thing again).

D'oh! State Of The Environment: A Nation In The Dark - Australia is not in a position to reliably track changes in its environment caused by climate change and other threats due to a lack of critical 'baseline' data and long-term monitoring programs, according to three experts quoted in the latest issue of Ecos (143, June-July 2008).

Dr Andrew Campbell and Professors Hugh Possingham and Will Steffen believe our intelligence on the state of our terrestrial environment falls well short of standards set by the US and the UK, and will prevent us from making effective management decisions in responding to future environmental threats.

Dr Campbell says Australia has too few botanists, entomologists, vertebrate taxonomists and soil scientists and, surprisingly for the 'marsupial country', one full-time marsupial taxonomist. (SPX)

That's because all the available funds have been wasted on 'state of the art' 'carbon accounting,' climate hysteria and similar valueless but fashionable crap, ya dopey buggers!

Incentives for carbon sequestration may not protect species - Paying rural landowners in Oregon's Willamette Basin to protect at-risk animals won't necessarily mean that their newly conserved trees and plants will absorb more carbon from the atmosphere and vice versa, a new study has found. (PhysOrg)

That's another reason not to do such a stupid thing then, isn't it.

Government of India Doubts AGW Link - Even while identifying some of the observed change in climatic behaviour, such as a 0.4C increase in surface temperature over the past century, or about 1 mm per year sea level rise in Northern Indian Ocean, or wider variation in rainfall patterns, the document notes that no firm link between the documented changes and global warming due to anthropogenic climate change has yet been established. Click link to download pdf of Indian Govt's National Plan on Climate Change (big file) (NZ Climate Science)

G8: “This Great Stage Of Fools” - Unfortunately, because of other heavy commitments, I shall be unable to post regular entries on the G8 Summit being held this week in Hokkaido, Japan. Luckily, however, this will not matter, because, as in pretty well everything else, Shakespeare and Dr. Johnson have said it all in advance rather better and more succinctly. I shall thus leave you with four summary ‘press reports’ direct from Hokkaido: (Global Warming Politics)

G8 reaches tentative climate change deal: sources - TOYAKO, Japan - Group of Eight negotiators have reached a tentative agreement on climate change that will be put to their leaders on Tuesday, sources familiar with the talks said, potentially resolving the stickiest issue at their summit. (Reuters)

EU chief Jose Manuel Barroso sets G8 target on gas cuts - EUROPEAN Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso has set a high mark for leaders of the Group of Eight wealthy nations, challenging them to endorse a long-term greenhouse target of 50 per cent emissions reduction by 2050. (The Australian)

Climate change: let’s make a deal - President George W. Bush believes that climate change cannot be tackled effectively without the co-operation of China and India, and he is right. Yet the question of who must now take action on climate change has become hopelessly confused with the separate issue of who is responsible for previous emissions. In their discussions on Tuesday and Wednesday, the Group of Eight must cut through the confusion and reach agreement on a framework for a future deal on climate change. (Financial Times)

No hard G8 climate change targets, draft statement says - RUSUTSU, Japan — The world's major economies will make no mention of hard targets to lower greenhouse gas emissions in a statement to be released in Japan this week on the sidelines of the G8 summit, according to a draft text obtained by The Canadian Press.

G8 leaders reach deal on climate change - Group of Eight leaders on Tuesday concluded what they presented as a breakthrough agreement on climate change, agreeing a carbon emissions cut of “at least 50 per cent” by 2050 and committing to the principle of mid-term reduction or stabilization targets.

Their offer will be taken on Wednesday to eight big developing countries – including China and India – with the aim of getting them to back the 2050 targets in return for promises of cash and technology. (Financial Times)

India Says Link Climate to Food, Energy for G8 Deal - NEW DELHI - A meaningful global deal to fight climate change will be impossible if it is not linked to food and energy security, India will tell the Group of Eight summit, a stand that rich nations say will make a pact difficult. (Reuters)

EU, Greens Urge Bush to Back 2050 Emissions Target - TOYAKO, Japan - The European Union and green groups piled pressure on the United States on Monday to agree to a target to halve global greenhouse gas emissions by mid-century and back the need for rich countries to set 2020 goals as well. (Reuters)

Debunking the 'curse of oil' - A paper co-written by an Indiana University economics professor takes issue with the widespread idea that there is a "natural resource curse" that puts countries with oil or mineral wealth at a disadvantage when it comes to economic growth.

The paper also shows that a common explanation for the curse -- that an abundance of oil or other point-source resources causes countries to have lower-quality civic institutions -- isn't true. (PhysOrg)

Oil Is in Your Future (and Your Pension Fund) - An “excess profits” tax on oil companies — which liberal Congressional leaders support — may well harm you by taking money out of your retirement fund, not just by discouraging oil production and exploration. Your pension fund is probably invested partly in oil companies or oil-related commodities. As the Washington Post reports today:

“Soaring fuel prices that are burning a hole in the wallets of consumers are not only benefiting oil companies . . . They are also lighting up the investment returns of pensions funds, which millions of ordinary Americans are counting on for their retirement. California’s public employees’ pension fund, the world’s largest, made its first investment of $1.1 billion into oil and other commodities early last year, and since then, Calpers has seen it soar 68 percent. Fairfax County pension managers have enjoyed a 61 percent return from a similar move over the past 12 months, far outpacing any other segment of the fund’s portfolio.” (Hans Bader, CEI)

The Onion Ringer - Congress is back in session and oil prices are still through the roof, so pointless or destructive energy legislation is all but guaranteed. Most likely is stiffer regulation of the futures market, since Democrats and even many Republicans have so much invested in blaming "speculators" for $4 gas.

Congress always needs a political villain, but few are more undeserving. Futures trading merely allows market participants to determine the best estimate – based on available information like supply and demand and the rate of inflation – of what the real price of oil will be on the delivery date of the contracts. Such a basic price discovery mechanism lets major energy consumers hedge against volatility. Still, "speculators" always end up tied to the whipping post when people get upset about price swings.

As it happens, though, there's a useful case-study in the relationship between futures markets and commodity prices: onions. Congress might want to brush up on the results of its prior antispeculation mania before it causes more trouble.

In 1958, Congress officially banned all futures trading in the fresh onion market. Growers blamed "moneyed interests" at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange for major price movements, which could sink so low that the sack would be worth more than the onions inside, then drive back up during other seasons or even month to month. Championed by a rookie Republican Congressman named Gerald Ford, the Onion Futures Act was the first (and only) time that futures trading in a specific commodity was prohibited, and the law is still on the books.

But even after the nefarious middlemen had been curbed, cash onion prices remained highly volatile. In a classic 1963 paper, Stanford economics professor Roger Gray examined the historical behavior of onion prices before and after the ban and showed how the futures market had actually served to stabilize prices. (Wall Street Journal)

Indonesia Aims to Balance Coal and Forests - LONDON - Indonesia, the world's number one coal exporter and a major greenhouse gas emitter, is struggling with conflicting green and growth aims.

It wants to increase coal-fired electricity generation by over 40 percent in the next decade, cut emissions and preserve rainforests at the same time. Analysts doubt it can manage all three. (Reuters)

Bad Juice II: Biofuels Maybe Not Quite So Bad, World Bank Says - The biofuels battle just gets hotter.

We just wrote about the Guardian story on a World Bank report allegedly blaming biofuels for 75% of the recent rise in fuel prices, and which was reportedly suppressed for political reasons. Alas, it ain’t so, Joe, the World Bank says.

Bob Davis of the WSJ spoke with Donald Mitchell, the author of the draft report—which wasn’t secret at all, but a working paper. And like all working papers, it doesn’t reflect the official position of the World Bank. (Keith Johnson, WSJ)

Is the EU Turning its Back on Biofuels? - The storm of critique against biofuels may finally be having some effect. Even as the European Commission remains true to its goal of increasing the use of biofuels, others aren't so sure. The European Parliament is trying to put on the brakes. (Der Spiegel)

Britain Says to Slow Introduction of Biofuels - LONDON - The British government said on Monday it would slow the introduction of biofuels to address concerns that switching the use of land could exacerbate climate change and push up food prices. (Reuters)

Going Against The Grain - In advance of the G-8 meeting, a new World Bank report blames rising global food prices on the mandated use of biofuels, including ethanol. G-8 leaders may be forced to relax their mandates. Will we? (IBD)

Germany Plans 30 Offshore Wind Farms - German Transport Minister Wolfgang Tiefensee says Berlin plans to build 30 offshore wind farms in the coming years to meet its renewable energy targets. The move comes as the debate over nuclear energy is heating up in Berlin. (Der Spiegel)

8-Year-Olds on Statins? A New Plan Quickly Bites Back - Cholesterol drugs for 8-year-olds?

This aggressive new recommendation for warding off heart disease in some children has stirred a furious debate among pediatricians since the American Academy of Pediatrics issued it on Monday.

While some doctors applauded the idea, others were incredulous. In particular, these doctors called attention to a lack of evidence that the use of the cholesterol-lowering drugs, called statins, in children would prevent heart attacks later in life.

“What are the data that show this is helpful preventing heart attacks?” asked Dr. Darshak Sanghavi, a pediatric cardiologist and assistant professor at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. “How many heart attacks do we hope to prevent this way? There’s no data regarding that.”

Nor, Dr. Sanghavi added, are there data on the possible side effects of taking statins for 40 or 50 years. (New York Times)

Children most in need — seeing beyond their size - The Cambridgeshire Primary Care Trust released its 2007-2008 Joint Strategic Needs Assessment for its children and young people last month. While the outcomes for most children are good, it said, they found that one in every 30 child is a “child in need,” due to neglect, physical or sexual abuse, disability or dangerous home settings from such things as violence or drug abuse. Their needs assessment identified 3,500 children most at risk and who needed additional help in order for them to have a chance of attaining “a reasonable standard of health and development.” Not unexpectedly, these children were primarily in the most disadvantaged areas. (Junkfood Science)

Magical foodstuffs, again: 70,000 could be saved by healthy eating, government says - A healthy eating drive will be launched in public-sector canteens following the publication of a report today saying that around 70,000 lives could be saved in the UK every year if people avoided unhealthy food. (The Guardian)

Common mutations linked to common obesity in Europeans - Scientists have discovered two common genetic mutations in people of European ancestry, which affect the production of several hormones controlling our appetite. The mutations have a significant effect on the risk of common obesity, according to research published today in Nature Genetics.

Greens Add Food Production To Their Hit List - CHURCHVILLE, VA—British diesel is a self-inflicted $12 per gallon, biofuels have nearly doubled their food prices, and 40 percent of U.K electrical power will be shut down over the next six years. Now, the same Green alarmists, who warn of man-made warming while the planet cools, demand sharp reductions in Europe’s pesticide use. That will slash Europe’s crop production in half during a global food emergency.

Is Green really the world’s way forward? (Dennis T. Avery, CGFI)

Moonbat... Trawlermen cling on as oceans empty of fish - and the ecosystem is gasping - All over the world, protesters are engaged in a heroic battle with reality. They block roads, picket fuel depots, throw missiles and turn over cars in an effort to hold it at bay. The oil is running out and governments, they insist, must do something about it. When they've sorted it out, what about the fact that the days are getting shorter? What do we pay our taxes for? (George Monbiot, The Guardian)

Hybrids will destroy our wildlife - WHILE most of us have been worrying ourselves sick about global warming, climate change and whales, someone in the federal bureaucracy blinked and we almost had an environmental disaster to match the import of cane toads in 1935. We may still have. It's early days. Allow me to fill in a few gaps.

Ask the average environmentalist who they think bears the major responsibility for the destruction of Australian wildlife and most will nominate farmers, loggers, miners and developers. And they would be wrong. All of the above have made a contribution towards damaging the environment and all creatures large and small but they would not approach the damage done by introduced species such as rabbits, goats, camels, brumbies, pigs and particularly, foxes and cats.

While the rabbits etc have destroyed the natural habitat, the foxes and cats have destroyed the wildlife. As a result a number of species have become extinct.

Animals under 5kg such as the bridled nailtail wallaby, the brush-tailed rock wallaby, the yellow-footed rock wallaby, the parma wallaby and the bilby, are now on the endangered list as a result of foxes and cats. It's been a long, hard battle to protect our small endangered species and the battle is far from won. If some idiots have their way it won't be. (The Australian)

I agreed with Cohen right up to his tag line -- I'm absolutely for the right to bear arms.

Meat and milk prices will rise to reflect environmental costs - The price of meat, milk and other British farm products will have to rise to reflect the environmental cost of producing them, a Government study has concluded. (Daily Telegraph)

July 7, 2008

Man-Made Hunger - Thirty countries have already seen food riots this year. The ever higher cost of food could push tens of millions of people into abject poverty and starvation.

To a large degree, this crisis is man-made — the result of misguided energy and farm policies. When President Bush and other heads of state of the Group of 8 leading industrial nations meet in Japan this week, they must accept their full share of responsibility and lay out clearly what they will do to address this crisis.

To start, they must live up to their 2005 commitment to vastly increase aid to the poorest countries. And they must push other wealthy countries, like those in the Middle East, to help too. That will not be enough. They must also commit to reduce, or even better, do away with their most egregious agricultural and energy subsidies, which contribute to the spread of hunger throughout the world. (New York Times)

Actually The Crone is partially correct (makes a nice change for them). We do have a moral imperative to address global hunger and much of it this hunger is artificially contrived. Ignoring politically contrived starvation (that which is deliberate policy or simple incompetence from corrupt governments and dictatorships) there is still a significant amount of suffering as a direct result of developed nation agricultural policy (and the Europeans are even worse than North Americans and by a significant margin). These policies do need to be addressed. The Crone misses the obvious, however, by failing to note the one immediate and cost-free action that could and should be universally undertaken that would bring the most significant and immediate improvement for the world's poor -- abandon the absurd gorebull warming hysteria and free up funds and effort for real problems. The ridiculous notion that we can or should even attempt to control the world's climate is not a zero sum game -- it has real costs and real consequences (primarily for the poor) by distorting the energy market and redirecting food production to horrendously wasteful subsidized food burning schemes. Gore is enriching himself on the suffering of the poor and Socialists are singing his praises. What's wrong with these people?

Alleviate world hunger produce more clean carbon dioxide - What is your carbon footprint? That is the wrong question to ask. A more meaningful question is--How much carbon dioxide does it take to grow the wheat required to produce a loaf of bread? Or--How much carbon dioxide does it take to grow the corn for the chicken feed required to produce a dozen eggs?

Far from being a pollutant, man along with every animal on land, fish in the sea, and bird in the air is totally dependent on atmospheric carbon dioxide for his food supply. (Dirck T. Hartmann, CFP)

Biofuels Blamed for Food Price Crisis - Report - LONDON - Biofuels have forced global food prices up by 75 percent -- far more than previously estimated -- according to a confidential World Bank report published in a British newspaper on Friday. (Reuters)

Secret report: biofuel caused food crisis - Internal World Bank study delivers blow to plant energy drive (The Guardian)

Don't Write Off Biofuels Yet, Advocates Say - TOKYO, Jul 4 - Japan wants countries to reconsider biofuels as an alternative technology to fight climate change by using fuel cell cars at the Group of Eight (G8) Summit on Jul. 7-9. The vehicles will transport the leaders of the world's major industrialised nations when they gather on the northern Japanese Island of Hokkaido.

Honda will display its most advanced environmental technologies with its FX Clarity and Civic Hybrid. They run on a blend of fuel made from straw.

The world is increasingly turning to biofuels as a way to ease pressure from rising oil prices. But critics say biofuels may create more greenhouse gas than they save. Clearing natural forests to plant fuel plantations releases more carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, and using food crops for fuel production is at odds with boosting the global food supply. (IPS)

Earth begins to kill people for changing its climate - Note: Yes, you read that right. The headline is not mine, but from the original masters of newspaper propaganda, Pravda. See the URL. Gotta love the classic photo they chose. But then, look at some of the other news stories they have. See the end of the article for some other views that have been published here based on factual data. - Anthony (Watts Up with That?)

Going Down: Death Rates Due to Extreme Weather Events - During our discussion of the preposterous news story from Pravda, claiming this headline: “Earth begins to kill people for changing its climate” a scientist dropped in to provide us some insight into his latest paper. It was highly relevant at the time since one of the repeating themes we see in the mainstream (and not so mainstream) media is the attribution of increasing death due to severe weather events to “global warming”.

But that is not supported by the real data, it is a false premise. (Watts Up with That?)

Only in America... Here Comes Carbox - Here's something new to worry about: If you can't figure out how much carbon your company is pumping into the atmosphere, you could face fines or even criminal charges someday.

Far-fetched? Many companies, from Alcoa to Chiquita Brands to Google don't think so. Regardless of who wins the presidential election this fall, new legislation targeting carbon emissions in one way or another seems practically inevitable. And that means corporate directors and executives are starting to worry about being sued under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act for bungling the job.

They're calling it Carbox, and it's inspired a green streak in corporate culture--and spawned a cottage industry to deal with the problem. As most people now painfully know, Sarbanes-Oxley, or Sarbox, requires companies to disclose any business risks facing the company to investors in public filings.

Corporate directors and executives can be sued and even face criminal liability if the company fails to properly disclose business risks--including, many now worry, the cost of emissions. (Forbes)

... do laws actively aid and abet anti-Americanism. Europeans make stupid noises about reducing carbon emissions too, with a nudge and a wink to their own carbon-intensive industries and everyone knows no harm will result. Only in America do environmental laws have real teeth and environmental zealots exploit activist courts in their unceasing efforts to harm human enterprise in general and American industry in particular.

New satellite to shed light on Earth's warming - BELTSVILLE, Md. — NASA plans to launch a new satellite next year that will help scientists fill in a gap in their understanding of global warming: the role of clouds and airborne particles.

The satellite Glory, targeted for launch next June, will give scientists a much better tool to measure particles than any satellite so far. The particles, known as aerosols, are bits of things such as dust and smog. (McClatchy Newspapers)

Media Watch: A Week In Focus - Quote of the Week: “Our Government has been too concerned with carbon footprints and climate change over the production of food. Yet the latter must now be the priority rather than chasing theories.” (Edwin White, Chair of the Royal Bath & West Society and dairy farmer, in ‘Farming - the four-year time bomb’, Country Life, July 2, p.72). “Well said, that man!”;... (Global Warming Politics)

Nobel Thoughts - I cannot recommend too highly the following Panel Discussion [11.15 am - 12.45 pm, Tuesday, July 1; link below] on ‘Climate Changes and Energy Challenges’, streamed directly from the 58th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting: Physics, which is being held between June 29 and July 4 at the island town of Lindau on Lake Constance. The Nobel Laureates involved in this Panel are the following seven Professors: Johann Deisenhofer (Germany: Chemistry, 1988); Ivar Giaever (Norway: Physics, 1973); Hartmut Michel (Germany: Chemistry, 1988); Douglas Osheroff (USA: Physics, 1996); Carlo Rubbia (Italy: Physics, 1984); Jack Steinberger (Germany: Physics, 1988); and Klaus von Klitzing (Germany: Physics, 1985). The Chair of the Panel is Prof. Dr. Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). The absence of any women members is a tad concerning.

As you will witness, the discussion is a particularly good example of how serious scientists disagree, how they call for more research, and how they are wary of the relationship between science and politics. You should listen especially for comments from Professors Steinberger [quoted above] and von Klitzing in this respect. I think you will also greatly enjoy hearing the Norwegian, Professor Giaever, being critical - to some applause, I might add - of his fellow countrymen for having presented Al Gore with the Nobel Peace Prize. He admits that he hates to say something bad about Norway, but he must still sharply disagree with his country for allowing Al Gore to pick up the Prize [see: ‘An IgNobel Prize’, October 13]. You will further note that biofuels receive an especially fierce drubbing. (Global Warming Politics)

Poland Joins East EU States Seeking CO2 Plan Change - PARIS - Poland has joined seven eastern new member states of the European Union in demanding changes to the bloc's plans for curbing greenhouse gas emissions to fight climate change, its environment minister said on Friday. (Reuters)

Eastern EU States Unite for Overhaul of CO2 Curbs - PARIS - The European Union geared up on Friday for deep cuts in greenhouse gases as eight ex-communist states sought help in overhauling their infrastructure for a low-carbon future.

France, which took over the EU's rotating presidency this week, has made climate change its top priority and hosted a meeting on the outskirts of Paris to identify the main areas of disagreement.

Environment ministers said the main concerns were how to protect industry from rivals in other countries with less strict environmental standards, as well as a growing rift between east and western Europe over the mechanism for curbing emissions. (Reuters)

G8 to Agree Tariff Steps to Drive CO2 Cuts - Paper - TOKYO - G8 leaders will agree to take their own initiatives to reduce or abolish import tariffs on industrial goods that aid efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions and thus help fight global warming, Japan's Asahi newspaper said on Friday. (Reuters)

G8 Countries Fail to Meet Climate Change Vows - Report - BERLIN - None of the G8 countries have come even close to fulfilling their pledges to fight climate change with the United States, Canada and Russia lagging especially far behind, a new study published on Thursday found. The "G8 Climate Scorecards" compiled by environmental group WWF and Allianz said even Great Britain, France and Germany at the top of the rankings had all failed abysmally to implement measures to back the goals of cutting carbon dioxide emissions. (Reuters)

UK's Brown: G8 Must Not Give Up on Climate Change - LONDON - British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has warned the G8 against a retreat into isolationism, saying the looming threat to the global economy instead required a speeding up of the fight against climate change and poverty. (Reuters)

Britain: a leader in tackling climate change? Far from it, says new report - Britain's true contribution to global warming is much higher than official figures show, ministers admit. And it has been rising rapidly at the very time that they have been boasting that it has been falling.

The admission undermines the Government's claim to be in the vanguard of cutting the pollution that causes climate change – on the eve of negotiations among the world's most powerful leaders this week. (The Independent)

Rudd keen to win universal pledges - KEVIN Rudd and Penny Wong will lobby China at this week's G8 summit in Japan to take further action to combat greenhouse gas emissions as they push for Australia's own emissions trading scheme by 2010.

In Tokayo, on the northern island of Hokkaido, the Prime Minister and the Climate Change Minister will also be lobbying the world's leading economies on international fuel prices. (The Australian)

Prospects Dim for G8 Climate Change Deal - TOYAKO, Japan - Prospects that the G8 would reach a meaningful agreement to how best to fight global warming at their annual summit dimmed on Sunday as leaders began arriving in northern Japan with a raft of global problems on their minds. (Reuters)

Carbon Market Looks Past G8 to US Election - TOYAKO, Japan - Carbon market traders and backers of clean-energy projects aren't holding their breath for a strong statement on fighting change during this week's G8 summit and are more focused on who wins November's US election. (Reuters)

May, if, could, might... Climate Change May Cut S Africa Corn Crop Sharply - SAPPORO, Japan - Climate change could cut South Africa's maize crop by 20 percent within 15 to 20 years as the west of the country dries out while the east is afflicted with increasingly severe storms, its environment minister said on Sunday. (Reuters)

From the rubber room: “Global Disruption” More Accurately Describes Climate Change, Not “Global Warming”–Leading Scientist John Holdren - Leading scientist John Holdren says “global warming” is not the correct term to use; he prefers “global disruption.” “‘Global warming’ [is] misleading. It implies something that’s mainly about temperature, that’s gradual, and that’s uniform across the planet,” says Holdren. “In fact, temperature is only one of the things that’s changing. It’s a sort of an index of the state of the climate. The whole climate is changing: the winds, the ocean currents, the storm patterns, snow packs, snowmelt, flooding, droughts. Temperature is just a bit of it.” [includes rush transcript] (Democracy Now)

Holdren has always been a catastrophist, he coauthored about getting rid of 'excessive' human population with Ehrlich in 1971.

Only seven years left for global warming target: UN panel chief - PARIS — The head of the UN's Nobel-winning panel of climate scientists on Friday said only seven years remained for stabilising emissions of global-warming gases at a level widely considered safe. (AFP)

Climate too hot for Clive - CLIVE Hamilton had an excellent plan last month when Charles Sturt University made this green preacher its Professor of Public Ethics.

"Over the last 20 or 30 years . . . academics have been less willing to engage in public debate," the former Australia Institute boss said.

That had to change, and by Gaia, Hamilton was the man to change it.

So how odd to see Hamilton a fortnight later telling a popular discussion website, On Line Opinion, he's no longer going to debate there.

"I will not be contributing any further pieces to the site because it has been captured by climate change denialists," he huffed. (Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun)

Another Warming Fear Drains Away - Today, an important report is published in Science [‘Large and Rapid Melt-Induced Velocity Changes in the Ablation Zone of the Greenland Ice Sheet’ by R. S. W. van de Wal, W. Boot, M. R. van den Broeke, C. J. P. P. Smeets, C. H. Reijmer, J. J. A. Donker, J. Oerlemans (Science July 4, 2008: Vol. 321, no. 5885, pp. 111 - 113. DOI: 10.1126/science.1158540)], and with it yet another ‘global warming’ fear drains away.

One of the major worries put forward by ‘global warmers’ is that melting water will lubricate the base of Greenland’s ice sheet, thus accelerating its slide into the oceans. This new Dutch study, led by Roderik S. W. van de Wal of the Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research, the University of Utrecht, and founded on detailed observations over 17 years, places a fast freeze on such fears, and shows that, far from speeding up, the western edge of Greenland’s ice sheet has actually slowed down by some 10% since 1991. (Global Warming Politics)

Comments On the Subcommittee on Energy and Air Quality Hearing “Climate Change: Costs of Inaction” - On Friday, we posted my testimony “A Broader View of the Role of Humans in the Climate System is Required In the Assessment of Costs and Benefits of Effective Climate Policy” to the Subcommittee on Energy and Air Quality of the Committee on Energy and Commerce Hearing “Climate Change: Costs of Inaction”.

The webcast of the entire Hearing is now available (see). The witnesses at the Hearing are listed on the Subcommittee website (see). (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

There is no evidence man-made CO2 causes climate change - During 2008, have we seen many stories in the newspapers about 2007 being particularly warm as a result of global warming?

During 2006, the doomsters were predicting that 2007 would be the hottest year on record, so why have we seen no reports about this?

The answer is simple – 2007 turned out to be the coolest year for 30 years. It is also the case that there has been no global warming since 1998. In fact, since 1998, there has been steady cooling.

Even more dramatic is the fact that the most recent computer model predictions indicate that there will be no more global warming for the next ten years. But the doomsters say that, after this ten-year period, global warming will come back with a vengeance. Why? (Dr Kelvin Kemm, Engineering News)

Environment: are we lying to the pollsters? - After John Major’s ‘shy Tories’ are we seeing a new breed of ‘shy Clarksons’ (First Post)

"Because for every Top Gear presenter who relishes telling people just what he thinks, there may well be millions of 'Shy Clarksons' out there reluctant to tell pollsters that they actually care more about the future of their mortgage than about the fate of Mother Earth." Nah...

Former General Electric CEO Jack Welch: Global Warming Skeptic - While guest hosting Wednesday’s "Morning Joe", former General Electric CEO Jack Welch condemned global warming, the very theory MSNBC has been peddling for years. GE, of course, owns MSNBC; the rebuke of MSNBC’s favorite alarmist hypothesis came in a segment where hosts share noteworthy editorials. Welch decided to share an opinion piece from Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal aptly titled "Global Warming As Mass Neurosis." Welch informed the audience that the article has "a lot of technical numbers here to show you that NASA overstated what's happening." Welch summarized the article by saying "And they got an argument that states that global warming is the attack on capitalism that socialism couldn't bring" (NewsBusters)

Australia's Garnaut hysteria and zealotry, with some early reactions -- considering it's too stupid for words there seems to be a whole lot being said about it:

We must act now on climate change: Ross Garnaut - KEVIN Rudd's hand-picked climate change adviser Ross Garnaut yesterday backed Labor's ambitious plan to introduce an emissions trading scheme within two years, saying it would be "terribly hard, but possible".

Releasing his landmark report on Australia's climate-change challenge, Professor Garnaut yesterday warned that the nation faced dire economic and environmental consequences if the world did not act quickly to slow global warming.

He said that despite some uncertainty about the science of climate change, and despite the fact that there was not yet a comprehensive international agreement for sharing the burden of greenhouse reductions, the economic and scientific evidence supported rapid domestic action. (The Australian) | Synopsis of the draft report (pdf) | Media release

Climate crisis 'diabolical' - An effective response to climate change must take shape and be in place in the next few years, the federal government's top climate change adviser says.

Professor Ross Garnaut 600-page draft report on climate change, of which the make-up of an emissions trading scheme (ETS) is a major focus, was released today. (Sydney Morning Herald)

Australia would lose most in emissions trade pact - AUSTRALIA would be the world's biggest loser if it signed up to international trading of carbon permits under a Kyoto-based system of targets and timetables, according to new economic modelling released yesterday.

Research by Australian National University economist Warwick McKibbin pre-empts draft advice to the Rudd Government expected to favour international trade in permits as a crucial tool to help manage the impact of reducing greenhouse emissions.

Ross Garnaut has been a strong advocate for Australia opening up its proposed emissions trading scheme to other countries so it can access cheaper permits from developing countries such as Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

However, the new modelling by Professor McKibbin, a Reserve Bank board director, predicts Australia would suffer significantly greater economic losses than other countries under this approach because of the detrimental impact on carbon-intense exports.

The research claims the losses would come from actions taken by Australia's big trading partners, who would cut imports, irrespective of the domestic price of greenhouse permits.

Professor McKibbin said the European emissions trading model was still under review, had not taken off globally and linking to it meant Australia would just import the highest carbon prices in the world. (The Australian)

No mercy for dirty power, says Garnaut's climate report - REGIONS hardest hit by the new emissions trading regime would win government handouts and industries investing in clean power would be rewarded, but the landmark Garnaut report on climate change rules out compensating coal-fired power stations. (The Australian)

Cut taxes to soften climate pain: Garnaut report - TAX cuts and welfare reform should be offered to dampen the impact of a new emissions trading scheme, according to the landmark Garnaut climate change report released today. (The Australian)

Garnaut: the beadle and the dietary - Professor Ross Garnaut’s draft report has certainly achieved one of its aims – it has scared the crap out of everybody – but perhaps not in the way intended.

We’re all now more frightened of the scheme than the effects of global warming. Up to Friday most people had only watched Al Gore’s Powerpoint film An Inconvenient Truth, been duly alarmed about the fate of the planet and voted for Kevin Rudd so he could sign the Kyoto Protocols to warm applause.

Now anybody who reads the Garnaut draft report - just Chapter 1 will do - won’t know what to be more scared of: the disease or the cure.

Garnaut’s draft report is a deeply disappointing document in many ways. It is quite disconnected from the real world, and will be almost completely ignored. (Alan Kohler, Business Spectator)

Garnaut's climate report 'just one input': Rudd - ROSS GARNAUT'S report on climate change is just one input that will help form the government's response to global warming, Kevin Rudd says. (The Australian)

Garnaut climate change report rejects emissions trade delay - AUSTRALIA'S chief climate change adviser has rejected the Opposition's push to delay the introduction of emissions trading until 2012, warning there is no time to waste.

But the Coalition has left Ross Garnaut’s plea for a bipartisan approach in tatters today, urging the Government to delay the introduction of the scheme that Kevin Rudd has pledged will be up and running by 2010. (The Australian)

Coalition cold on 2010 emissions trade - BRENDAN Nelson has today dashed hopes of a bipartisan approach on an emissions trading scheme by 2010, warning there's no rush to implement the scheme if it will wreck jobs. ``There's nothing magical about 2010,'' Dr Nelson told reporters in Sydney today. (The Australian)

Garnaut fails community - TAXPAYERS should ask Professor Ross Garnaut for their money back: his report is little more than a fearmongering document designed to bolster the age-old socialist agenda of wealth redistribution.

It fails from the basis of science and it fails from the basis of economics but it will, however, warm the hearts of the anti-capitalist doom merchants of Europe and inner-urban branches of the Labor Party with its prognostications.

Nostradamus would be proud. (Piers Akerman, The Australian)

Some of the associated propaganda campaign: Australia Faces Worse, More Frequent Droughts - Study - PERTH - Australia could experience more severe droughts and they could become more frequent in the future because of climate change, a government-commissioned report said on Sunday. (Reuters) | Welcome to a drought-stricken future (The Australian)

Please note this is merely more PlayStation® climatology with no foundation in reality (hence the weasel wording "could") -- CSIRO can't even get close with 3-month precipitation forecasts, let alone claim any credibility on decadal and centurial outlooks. There is still no evidence any climate model produces output more accurate than a table of random numbers for regional precipitation forecasts and for regional temperature trends they are no better. The Coupled Model Intercomparison Project shows models still can't agree within 8 °F (5 °C) what the base mean temperature of the Earth should be! Moreover these same state-of-the-art models have no idea whether Earth averages 3' or 3'6" rainfall equivalent precipitation per year. Being out by potentially 20% in the hydrological cycle is considered significant since water is far and away the most significant greenhouse gas and illusions of it being a potent positive feedback resulting from trivial carbon dioxide-induced atmospheric warming underpin the entire enhanced greenhouse hypothesis panic. It is not easy to determine trends and attribute causes when we do not know what the baseline figure might be.

Garnaut scenario 'simply wrong' - CLIMATE change sceptics have attacked the Garnaut orthodoxy that without immediate action to slash greenhouse gas emissions, Australia will suffer "diabolical" consequences.

Rejecting predictions that the Great Barrier Reef would be destroyed and rainfall patterns radically altered without immediate moves to cut carbon emissions, climatologist Stewart Franks said scenarios set out by Ross Garnaut were simply wrong.

"The whole idea that you can say that by 2030 or 2040 rainfall will be a certain percentage less is a complete nonsense because it ignores the natural variability," he said.

Professor Franks, an expert in hydro-climatic variability at the University of Newcastle in NSW, said Australia's current drought had nothing to do with increased carbon emissions, but was instead caused by natural rainfall events.

"We have these incredibly dry periods that can last for decades, and we then have these similar decades that are wetter than average. This is all due to El Nino and La Nina," he said.

Professor Franks said although Australia was very dry, it had more water per capita than any other country in the world.

"It's a question of how we manage that water, and we've been particularly bad at managing the Murray-Darling Basin," he said.

Professor Franks said an emissions trading scheme would achieve nothing. "The truth is that there will be a lot of pain for absolutely no gain," he said. (The Australian)

More bullshit propaganda: No credit as oceans turn sour - NOW that Ross Garnaut's draft report has been released, most of the climate change debate in Australia will focus on the economic effects of any emissions trading scheme.

However, there's another carbon problem, which will profoundly affect our oceans, that has received scant attention beyond a small band of marine scientists and is largely independent of global warming.

The public, aware of the role of carbon dioxide in climate change, doesn't know of its function in acidifying the oceans and the hundreds of years that would be required for recovery.

Except ocean acidification is a non-problem and most sea life evolved during periods of much higher atmospheric carbon dioxide (rarely in Earth's history has atmospheric CO2 been as low as now).

Latrobe needs stacks of time to adjust - IN Morwell, in the heart of Victoria's coal-burning Latrobe Valley, city chief executive Paul Buckley says his region needs a 10- to 15-year transition period from old coal to new coal technology if it is to escape an economic crash.

With the smoke stacks of the giant Hazelwood power station belching steam in the backdrop, Buckley, chief executive of Latrobe City, says older power stations in the valley, such as Hazelwood, will "find it more difficult, in fact impossible, to reduce their emissions from what they are at the moment".

"And it is probably, realistically, a 10- to 15-year time-frame before new technology is introduced, tested and becomes commercially viable," he tells The Australian.

Australia PM Says Committed to Carbon Trade Schedule - PERTH - Australia Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said on Sunday he saw no case for delaying the startup of a carbon trading scheme beyond 2010, adding that the Reserve Bank saw no inflationary pressure arising from the scheme. (Reuters)

Sadly K.Rudd thinks the pre-election media echo chamber of "Let's fix global warming (Halleluiah!)" still applies now that voters have seen in the cold light of day that it will actually cost them money -- and their living standards are already in decline.

Rudd faces climate revolt - KEVIN Rudd faces a savage backlash from unions and state Labor over an emissions trading scheme, with calls to offer free permits to polluters in order to protect electricity prices and prevent jobs moving offshore. (The Australian)

Voters begin to shift on PM - KEVIN Rudd has suffered double-digit falls in his popularity among higher-income earners, full-time workers and people aged 35-49 years as the superstar ratings of earlier in the year returned to more mortal levels in recent weeks.

A special analysis of Newspoll shows that the Prime Minister has lost support among all demographic groups - male and female, rich and poor, and households with and without children - since the May budget. (The Australian)

Rudd won't share our pain with climate tax - KEVIN Rudd wants all Australians to pay more for power and petrol to help save the planet – except himself. (Sunday Mail)

Also Going Down: Carbon dioxide burial reaches a milestone - IT IS technology vital to the Government’s hopes of cutting greenhouse emissions from Australia’s huge coal-fired power stations: capturing carbon dioxide from the polluting stations and burying it deep underground.

Australia’s first trial of geosequestration in the Otways reached its first milestone last week — 10,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide was successfully stored two kilometres underground in a depleted natural gas field. (Watts Up With That?)

What a garbled mishmash: Air Travel in Tropics Linked to Global Warming - New research suggests that air travel in tropics increases global warming more than a flight in temperate latitudes. (ANI)

Presumably there's some translation issues with this one since it is more train wreck than air travel science. Quick reality check: the tropopause (transition from troposphere to stratosphere) occurs at about 50,000 feet in the tropics and airliners cruise in the mid-troposphere (to about 35,000 feet, which is at or above the height of the tropopause at latitudes greater than ~50 degrees North or South). No warming is occurring at such altitudes in the tropics despite that being the very location models insist it should be most obvious. The linked item is a complete nonsense.

Not Just the Sticker Price Anymore - If you are in California and looking for a new car, there will be new scale on the window sticker, in addition to the MSRP and the options starting as soon as next month. What is it? It's a "Global Warming Score". (AccuWeather)

Leaders squib on the nuclear debate - WHEN our fearless political leaders met in Sydney yesterday to try to hammer out a list of environmental challenges, they squibbed debate on the one energy source that is clean and green: nuclear power.

While the mighty Murray River withers, and as the Rudd Government grapples with how to implement an emissions-trading scheme, not one political figure has the vision or courage to say the bleeding obvious: nuclear power should be part of Australia's energy solution.

Not one. (Steve Lewis, Herald Sun)

Storm over Cape Cod - Famous names fight wind farm plan in millionaires' playground (The Independent)

EU Backs Away from Biofuel Goal, Eyes Brazil Accord - PARIS - European Union energy chiefs considered an accord with Brazil over biofuels on Saturday at the end of a three day meeting in Paris during which they backed away from the EU's controversial biofuels target. (Reuters)

Apocalypse Now - What is it with environmental organizations, politicians, bureaucrats, quasi-scientists (junk, pseudo- or just bad), with their dire predictions of apocalyptic climate change – claims that swamp the media, generating unnecessary alarm and panic? They are seized upon by media, hungry for eye-catching stories.

There is a growing band of people whose livelihoods depend on creating and maintaining panic. There are also some who are trying to keep numbers away from your notice and others who hope that you will not make comparisons. Their stock in trade is the gratuitous lie. The aim here is to nail just a few of them.

For instance, environmental organizations such as Greenpeace, the Friends of the Earth, Wetlands and even wannabe environmental sites such as Treehugger and have curiously chosen to point accusing fingers at, of all things, palm oil. Dredging up every conceivable “environmental” infraction that they could think of, ranging from deforestation to destruction of orang utan habitat to the extinction of the great ape, pygmy elephants and the Sumatran rhino to global warming and climate change – indeed, palm oil appears to have been accused of every environmental ill right across the entire spectrum of “environmental” transgressions.

Let us examine the facts. Palm oil has been cultivated in Malaysia for over a hundred years. Yet forest cover in Malaysia has remained an extremely high 65% which is much higher than the prevailing 20 or so per cent typically found in the industrial west. That’s down to the fact that the bulk of oil palm in Malaysia is traditionally cultivated on legitimate agricultural land and previously logged over areas. Another contributing factor is the undeniably high productivity of oil palm plantations, in fact, as high as 7,250 liters per hectare per year. As the highest yielding oil seed on the market, oil production from oil palm requires less land than that for other crops including soy, rapeseed, corn and sunflower. (Palm Oil Truth Foundation)

The fag end of advocacy research - On closer inspection, claims that England's smoking ban has led to a steep fall in heart attacks quickly turn to ash. (Basham and Luik, sp!ked)

I can think of a lot of descriptions and 'controversial' would be a serious understatement:  Cholesterol Screening Is Urged for Young - The nation’s pediatricians are recommending wider cholesterol screening for children and more aggressive use of cholesterol-lowering drugs starting as early as the age of 8 in hopes of preventing adult heart problems.

The new guidelines were to be issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics on Monday.

The push to aggressively screen and medicate for high cholesterol in children is certain to create controversy amid a continuing debate about the use of prescription drugs in children as well as the best approaches to ward off heart disease in adults. (New York Times)

Wellness water — the 8x8 myth - It may be one of the oldest beliefs, ascribed by both medical practitioners and lay press for hundreds of years: "The average person should drink at least 8 glasses of water a day for optimal wellness."

But how many people know that the roots of this adage aren’t in science, but vitalism and nostrum remediums? How many know that after centuries, there’s still no medical evidence for the belief that normal, healthy people all need to be concerned about drinking more water?** (Junkfood Science)

FDA reviews diabetes drug approval process - The FDA’s Endocrinologic and Metabolic Drugs Advisory Committee held its long-awaited meetings this week to decide whether to advise the FDA to raise the standards for approving diabetes drugs. With questions being raised about the benefits versus risks for other long-term drugs, such as treatments for cholesterol, mental illness and anemia, all facing similar scrutiny, the FDA’s final decision could change the entire framework for the approval of other drugs. The questions that weren’t asked or addressed in these Advisory Committee meetings, though, are as important to note as those that were. (Junkfood Science)

Compulsory weight program for 3-year olds - Just when you thought you’d seen everything when it comes to the hysterical panic over baby fat...

This might be the most potentially dangerous government anti-obesity initiative yet. It disregards sound medical and scientific evidence on normal child growth and development, let alone the most fundamental principles of nutrition and the essential nutrients needed by children for normal growth. And it’s all to address a crisis that the government’s own health statistics have shown doesn’t exist. (Junkfood Science)

Do parents really not want to be “allowed” to opt out of BMI screenings of their children? - A writer wonders why people are blindly falling into lockstep behind federal programs that are making the prevention of childhood obesity a national public health priority. It can sure feel that way as that seems to be all we hear. But is it true? (Junkfood Science)

Meghan Cox Gurdon: Tell the children the world is their oyster - A friend of mine gave his 11-year-old daughter a pair of sneakers the other day, thinking she’d be pleased. She was not. She became agitated when she saw the label and told him, “I can’t wear these, because of child labor!”

It took half an hour of Internet research for him to persuade the girl that her anxieties were unfounded, and that Nike did not enslave small children in remote foreign places.

What’s a pre-pubescent child doing, panicking about the industrial origins of her shoes? She’s behaving obediently, internalizing the urgent, incessant adult talk of danger and crisis and bad things happening.

“She worries about the repercussion of her smallest action,” her father sighs, “what she eats and wears, and even where she goes.”

The Cold War may be over, but American children are ducking and covering more than ever. They’re not crouching in fear of nuclear conflagration, as in Soviet days. They’re not even ducking to avoid a wild-eyed jihadi with a dirty bomb.

What they fear is — well, what don’t we teach them to fear? (The Examiner)

Oh boy... The floating cities that could one day house climate change refugees - At first glance, they look like a couple of giant inflatable garden chairs that have washed out to sea. But they are, apparently, the ultimate solution to rapidly rising sea levels. (Daily Mail)

Energy cost for shipping food is minor - Criticism of our great system of food delivery because of a slavish adherence to a “green” lifestyle is simply unfair. (Tom Moriarty, Climate Sanity)

Note: this piece contains a net per person energy usage statistic bound to cause some consternation -- it shouldn't. Net energy usage includes items like cement manufacture, road building and maintenance, defense, coast guard, whooping crane monitoring, all transport, parks maintenance, sanitation, fire fighting, snow clearance... in short it is all of society's energy use from launching weather satellites to pumping effluent divided by the number of members in said society. The energy involved in transporting your food is indeed a trivial component.

A Tomato by Any Other Name? Experts Set Food Rules - GENEVA - Food safety experts agreed for the first time on the qualities defining a tomato, in a first step toward an international code on preventing fruit and vegetable contamination. (Reuter)

Britain Seeks to Speed up GM Import Approvals - STONELEIGH, England - British farm minister Hilary Benn called on Friday for the European Union to speed up the approval process for imports of genetically modified (GM) crops. (Reuters)

July 3, 2008

US Midwest Floods Show Impact of Global Warming - WASHINGTON - Floods like those that inundated the US Midwest are supposed to occur once every 500 years but this is the second since 1993, suggesting flawed forecasts that do not take global warming into account, conservation experts said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Not sure if they are merely ignorant or deliberately deceptive -- we'll go with the former.

To begin with, "global warming" and Midwest flooding are negatively correlated: both 1993 and current conditions are cooler than average years.

La Niña conditions are associated with cooler conditions.

La Niña conditions are associated with Midwest floods (or rather Midwest floods and cooler conditions are associated with La Niñas).

Obviously then it was cooling that was not accounted for in forecasts -- and various cycle phases such as ENSO, AMO, PDO...

Then there's event likelihood. Conditions conducive to 1 in 500 year events tend to last for about 3-9 decades as various cycles go in and out of phase and curious synchronicities occur. Under no circumstance is there a suggestion that having 1 such event precludes any similar occurrence for another 500 years and in fact 1 such event indicates the likelihood of more similar events until there is a change in phase of currently dominant cycles.

“Midwest floods show signs of global warming” - An Example Of Advocacy Journalism - Thanks to Mike Smith for alerting us to this article (and for his insightful weblog “Midwest Floods and Unjustified Climate Change Fear Mongering” on Watts Up With That on this topic).

The Rueters news article by Deborah Zabarenko, Environment Correspondent on July 1 2008 is titled “Midwest floods show signs of global warming”

This article is an excellent example of the bias that exists in the communication of climate information to the public. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Pointless to rush a carbon emissions plan - OTTAWA -- Assuming - however briefly - that Canada must impose carbon taxes, when would be the best time to do it? Stéphane Dion says now. Right now. Yale University economist William Nordhaus says, well, slow down, friend. We have time. Let's do this thing properly.

Dr. Nordhaus takes global warming seriously, anticipating that it may well "cast a shadow over the globe for decades, perhaps centuries, to come." When he says centuries, he means centuries. In his highly sophisticated computer analysis of global warming strategies, he includes the option of doing nothing at all for 250 years - and found that it delivered the same result (measured in global emissions of carbon dioxide one century hence) as the Kyoto Protocol with or without the United States.

He includes, as well, a 50-year delay and got an intriguing assessment. Implement the right climate change strategy in 2055 and you still get - by 2105 - precisely the same reduction in CO2 that you get with the computer-designed "optimal strategy," a go-slow, go-frugal approach that begins modestly in the next decade and expands incrementally through the rest of the century. (Neil Reynolds, Globe and Mail)

Lindau: Half of Nobel prize winners are skeptical about AGW orthodoxy - Seven Nobel prize winners participated in a climate debate. How did it look like? Well, there may be a climate consensus among the high-school dropouts but there is none among the Nobel prize winners. There was one more difference. Many of the Nobel prize winners said, unlike the high-school dropouts, the following sentence: "I am no expert." ;-)

Ivar Giaever (Norway), the 1973 Nobel prize winner for superconductivity (he was essential to master electron tunneling in superconductors and shared the physics award with Esaki and Josephson), was asked how the world should tackle climate change. The following quote accurately matches the content but it was shortened and edited:

"First of all, I didn't volunteer to be on this panel. Second of all, I am a skeptic, as I told you yesterday. Third of all, if I am Norwegian, should I really worry about a little bit of warming? I am unfortunately becoming an old man. We have heard many similar warnings about the acid rain 30 years ago and the ozone hole 10 years ago or deforestation but the humanity is still around. The ozone hole width has peaked in 1993.

Moreover, global warming has become a new religion. We frequently hear about the number of scientists who support it. But the number is not important: only those who are correct are important. We don't really know what the actual effect on the global temperature is. There are better ways to spend the money [question period]," he referred to a lecture about poverty by Hans Rosling (Sweden) that heavily relied on my favorite Gapminder: well, he is the director of the Gapminder Foundation. ;-) (The Reference Frame)

Video: Panel discussion Physics: Climate Changes and Energy Challenges (in English)

Lawrence Solomon: Airing The Dubious Science Of Global Warming - In The Deniers , Lawrence Solomon profiles 28 topflight scientists whose work undermines the case that humanity is heating up the planet to a destructive degree. Further, the executive director Toronto's Energy Probe shows that the scientific "consensus" behind that theory has been engineered in part by hardball political tactics. The veteran environmentalist's latest book names individuals whose grants evaporated when their research got out of line, and he describes pressure on scientists from climate bureaucrats at the United Nations. "This media-inflated issue is diverting scarce resources away from environmental and economic problems that are much more urgent," the writer told a breakfast meeting in Calgary last week. (Mike Byfield, DOB Magazine)

How long do you deserve to live? - The belief in human-induced global warming, combined with a growing population, has led some environmentalists to question the morality of having children. The suggestion is, more children mean more rapid planetary overheating, as humans engage in the selfish processes of working, playing, eating, using electricity and operating a car. Other people disagree with what they regard as an environmental attack on the human race.

But what about the children who are already here? Do those who believe in human-induced global warming think children should be told that the planet would be better off if they had never been born – that they are planet slayers, so to speak? In fact, the Australian government believes just that, and encourages teachers to tell children when they will have created their fair share of greenhouse gasses according to their current living habits and those of their families – and at what age, therefore, they should die. (Globe and Mail)

Summer Sacrilege: U.S. Climate Approach Finds Backers - Could George Bush be right?

When the G-8 club of rich countries descends on Japan next week, one of the meatier issues on its plate will be charting a path to fight climate change after years of half-starts and fitful promises.

So far, the U.S. has been vilified for dragging its feet and insisting that the world’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases, like China, take part in any scheme. The pressure is on for the G-8 to commit to big (and expensive) cuts in greenhouse-gas emissions by 2050, even as political leaders everywhere are battling high energy prices that are already choking economic growth. (Keith Johnson, WSJ)

Oil shock helps put global warming on G8's back burner - PARIS: The Group of Eight (G8) is set to fudge its decision on climate change next week, reflecting the issue's weaker status in the absence of European campaigning and in the face of sky-high oil prices. (Economic Times)

Before G8, Britain Says CO2 Emissions Understated - LONDON - On the eve of a G8 summit due to address climate change, Britain admitted on Wednesday that it, and by implication others, has been drastically understating its true carbon emissions. (Reuters)

G8 Alone Can't Set World Climate Goal - White House - WASHINGTON - The Group of Eight major industrialized countries meeting next week in Japan cannot by themselves set effective long-term world goals on curbing greenhouse gas emissions, the White House said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Developed countries declarations on climate change 'make no sense': India - NEW DELHI: Industrialised countries should meet their own commitments in the fight against climate change rather than asking countries like India and China to cap greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the prime minister's principal negotiator on climate change Shyam Saran said here.

A week before leaders of 16 major economies - including India - are expected to sign a declaration underscoring the importance of fighting climate change, Saran told IANS in an interview that emission reduction targets being announced by developed countries meant nothing in the absence of a baseline year from which to measure the reductions.

As agreed in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), "1990 must be the baseline year" from which GHG emissions would be reduced, Saran said. "We'll resist any unilateral attempt to try and change the baseline to some future date."

Declarations by developed countries to halve GHG emissions by 2050 "make no sense" without a baseline, he pointed out. "It will only confuse world public opinion. It may make them think you are doing something very major, which you actually have no intention of doing," Saran said. (Economic Times)

We agree it makes no sense to make claims about controlling weather/climate and carbon dioxide restrictions are an absolute absurdity.

Australia Carbon Adviser Opposes Fuel Break - Experts - CANBERRA - A draft blueprint of Australia's emissions trading scheme will include fuel, but is unlikely to recommend what the country's key emissions cap should be, experts close to the report's author said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Carbon Trade a Threat to Australian Firms - Industry - CANBERRA - Australian businesses, particularly large energy companies, will be forced to close doors unless they are allowed to pass on the cost of carbon emissions trading to consumers, big business warned on Thursday. (Reuters)

Idiots or clever tacticians? Business to back carbon trading - BIG business will today pledge full support for an emissions trading scheme but it will warn Kevin Rudd against granting exemptions from the scheme for crude political reasons.

The Business Council of Australia will also warn its members against overstating the negative effects of the policy at the risk of alienating the Government, and urge the community to accept that fuel and power prices are too low and must increase. (The Australian)

Uh-huh... Penguin Chicks Frozen by Global Warming? - This January—deep summer in Antarctica—explorer Jon Bowermaster suffered through a five-day stretch of torrential rains on the west side of the Antarctic Peninsula. The same cannot be said for thousands of downy penguin chicks. (National Geographic News)

Climate Change And The ‘Stradivarius’ - If you are highly-strung about climate change, then think again; it may well have been climate change that enabled Antonio Stradivari (c.1644 - 1737) to produce some of the finest violins, violas, and ‘cellos ever made. The Latinized-form of his surname, ‘Stradivarius’, often abbreviated to ‘Strad’, is, of course, synonymous with violins that are unmatched for their depth, beauty, and clarity of tone. (Global Warming Politics)

Nude Socialist and the global gullibility index: Which countries would you pick for your climate team? - Tackling climate change calls for global teamwork, but some countries have been less-than-perfect partners.

In order to understand why some nations fall behind in their international climate duties, Michèle Bättig and colleagues at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, created a Climate Cooperation Index.

They plan to use it to study what drives a government to cooperate with international climate policy – for instance, if different political systems, poverty, or the expected cost of climate change adaptation make a country a better or worse team player. ( news service)

What Is The Difference Between Weather and Climate? - We all know that skillful weather prediction is very difficult, and after a week or so, little or no skill remains. Yet, the IPCC made, and policymakers are accepting, forecasts of climate decades from now as skillful.  (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

June 2008 Satellite Results - You have to get up pretty early to be first out of the blocks on monthly temperatures. This month, Climate Audit is first out of the blocks with June 2008 monthly temperatures. (Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit)

What a difference 20 years makes - Recently, Dr. James Hansen of NASA GISS gave his 20 year anniversary speech before congress, in which he was restating the urgency of the global warming crisis we now face. Warnings of tipping points, and a call for putting “energy executives on trial for crimes against humanity and nature” were parts of that speech.

Here are the just published global temperature data sets for UAH (University of Alabama) and RSS (Remote Sensing Systems) and the 20 year time-line. Dr. Hansen if you are reading can you kindly point out where in the time-line the crimes occurred and tipping points are? (Watts Up with That?)

Northwest Passage: still impassable - impassable

im·pass·a·ble [im-pas-uh-buhl]

1. not passable; not allowing passage over, through, along, etc.: Heavy snow made the roads impassable.

2. unable to be surmounted: an impassable obstacle to further negotiations.

There has been a lot of hype this year citing data which is suggesting that we’ll be able to navigate the Northwest Passage and some even so bold as to suggest a completely ice free Arctic Sea. You could say: “A picture is always worth 1000 data points.” (Watts Up With That?)

Harsh winters force Mongolian horsemen to abandon nomadic life - The blockbuster movie, Mongol, depicts the skilled horsemen who helped their leader, Genghis Khan, build one of the greatest empires the world has seen.

But the lifestyle of today's Mongolian horseman - and other nomadic herdsmen - is under threat. A succession of climactic disasters in the last 10 years has forced 500,000 of them abandon a nomadic lifestyle that has remained almost unchanged for centuries and to look instead for a new life in the cities.

Mongolia is one of the toughest places on earth to live and can boast the coldest capital - Ulaanbaatar - on the planet. Temperatures drop to at least -30C in winter. The country is frozen from November to March.

But four climactic disasters, known as 'dzuds', since 1999 have made life almost impossible for even the toughest of Mongolia's nomadic people who roam over a country three times the size of France. Three particularly harsh winters since 2000 have killed a third of the nation's livestock.

In 2001, the temperature dropped to a record-breaking -57C. Some 15,000 herders lost all of their animals through starvation and cold, and with them, their money and food. More than a quarter of the 2.6m population has left the vast rural areas, where herdsmen have lived since before Ghengis Khan's empire was established in the 13th century, and have fled in desperation to the cities. (Daily Telegraph)

Seth Boringtheme writes again: Hot future shock: Heat wave temperatures to soar - During the European heat wave of 2003 that killed tens of thousands, the temperature in parts of France hit 104 degrees. Nearly 15,000 people died in that country alone. During the Chicago heat wave of 1995, the mercury spiked at 106 and about 600 people died.

In a few decades, people will look back at those heat waves "and we will laugh," said Andreas Sterl, author of a new study. "We will find (those temperatures) lovely and cool."

Sterl's computer model shows that by the end of the century, high temperatures for once-in-a-generation heat waves will rise twice as fast as everyday average temperatures. Chicago, for example, would reach 115 degrees in such an event by 2100. Paris heat waves could near 109 with Lyon coming closer to 114. (AP)

Always something to complain about: Snow in July? A Mixed Blessing in the Rockies - Huge amounts of snow still blanket the Northern Rockies high country, delaying the opening of a scenic road that is a key route for the tourists who power the area’s economy. (New York Times)

More population panic: Condoms for climate change? - We do it about 215 million times a day, so humans need to stop shying away from talking about sex — and the babies it makes to help avert the global climate crisis, environmentalist and author Robert Engelman says.

With 78 million new homo sapiens arriving every year, the human race urgently needs to address population growth through debate, Engleman says in his new book, "More: Population, Nature and What Women Want."

Engleman, a program director at Washington's Worldwatch Institute, spoke to Reuters about how to get the conversation going, and why we need to hurry, but be calm, about it. (Reuters)

Environment: Climate risk from flat-screen TVs - The rising demand for flat-screen televisions could have a greater impact on global warming than the world's largest coal-fired power stations, a leading environmental scientist warned yesterday.

Manufacturers use a greenhouse gas called nitrogen trifluoride to make the televisions, and as the sets have become more popular, annual production of the gas has risen to about 4,000 tonnes.

As a driver of global warming, nitrogen trifluoride is 17,000 times more potent than carbon dioxide, yet no one knows how much of it is being released into the atmosphere by the industry, said Michael Prather, director of the environment institute at the University of California, Irvine. (The Guardian)

Congress = OPEC? - What do the Democratic-led Congress and OPEC have in common? Both sit on vast amounts of oil, and are content to leave it in the ground and let prices soar. Fortunately, Americans are catching on. (IBD)

Energy Market Watching Tropical Wave in Atlantic - NEW YORK - A strong tropical wave in the Atlantic Ocean off the west coast of Africa could develop further over the next couple of days, meteorologists at the US National Hurricane Center and said Tuesday. (Reuters)

27 arrested in power station protest - POLICE have arrested 27 Greenpeace activists protesting against emissions from a New South Wales power station. The 27 protesters entered the Eraring power station on the NSW Central Coast early today, with 12 chaining themselves to conveyor belts. The rest tried to climb on to the roof to paint a sign saying "Revolution" and to hang a banner reading "Energy Revolution - Renewables Not Coal", a Greenpeace spokeswoman said. Members of the 15-strong roof-climbing team were quickly arrested and police began removing protesters chained to the conveyors. (AAP)

Hopefully these domestic terrorists and complete idiots will be forced to pay the costs of their stupid and dangerous actions.

Carbon capture: pipe dream or climate change weapon? - MADRID - Carbon capture and storage (CSS) is fast becoming the oil industry's favourite solution to the climate crisis but the seductive simplicity of the idea masks a series of doubts about its viability. (AFP)

No, its attraction to the oil and gas industry is enhanced recovery of valuable product and, if you can get gullible politicians to underwrite the cost with taxpayer dollars, then it becomes financially very attractive indeed. Beyond that it is all downside.

Why the Gulf Is Switching to Coal - The Persian Gulf may be sitting atop massive oil reserves. But with prices for crude skyrocketing, it makes more sense to sell it than to burn it. Instead, the Gulf is turning to coal for its energy needs -- to the detriment of the climate.

For Alfred Tacke, CEO of the Essen energy giant Evonik Steag, it's the yellowish-brown pall below that tells him the plane he's on is approaching the Persian Gulf. Beneath the haze, he knows, is Kuwait, which has five large-scale gas- and oil-fired power plants in operation. The power they generate provide around-the-clock electricity for Kuwait's gigantic seawater desalination plants and the country's enormous air-conditioning needs.

"Here, you only need to stick your finger in the sand and you're likely to strike oil or gas," says Tacke, whose energy group ranks fifth among Germany's electricity producers. But Tacke has his own ideas about how to make money in the region. And they center on a different kind of black gold: coal-fired power plants. "We're currently in the process of discussing the conditions for projects of this kind," he says.

As odd as the idea may seem, coal power in the gulf is just one more outcome of skyrocketing oil prices. In a world with dramatically disparate ideas on how or even whether to address the risks of global warming, demand for coal plants across the globe is growing rapidly to the detriment of efforts to increase the production of renewable energies such as solar, hydro and wind. (Der Spiegel)

U.S. Lifts Moratorium on New Solar Projects - Under increasing public pressure, the federal government lifted a freeze on new solar projects, barely a month after it was put into effect. (New York Times)

Importance of nursing education - Nurses across the country have just received the latest publications of their state nurses associations. The mission statement of these associations is “to promote the professional and educational advancement of nurses and the highest standards of nursing practice.” One piece in mine discussed changes to the Nursing Practice Act being considered by the Board of Nursing. The proposals would require BSN degrees for nurses — bachelor degrees from university programs taught by Ph.D. level instructors — in order to increase the quality of nursing education and clinical practice. (Junkfood Science)

Obesity paradox #... Obesity may offer some protection after stenting - NEW YORK - Paradoxically, obesity may offer some protection against heart-related "events," like heart attack, in people who have a stent placed to prop open a clogged coronary artery, research shows. (Reuters Health)

Diet sized snacks make you eat more - Diet-sized snack packets encourage people to eat more, a new study has shown. Mini packets of crisps, sweets and biscuits, are becoming increasing popular among children and those keen to watch their weight. However, new research suggests that the size of the packaging could actually be counterproductive, convincing consumers that they can eat more of the product because it comes in a small package. (Daily Telegraph)

Some 1.5 Bln People May Starve Due to Land Erosion - FAO - MILAN - Rising land degradation reduces crop yields and may threaten food security of about a quarter of the world' population, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

July 2, 2008

Guest Essay: Britain’s Climate Madness - Today, ‘Global Warming Politics’ is honoured to be able to host a Guest Essay by the outstanding economist, Ruth Lea. Ruth was Director of the Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) for four years until November 2007. She is now Director of Global Vision, and a Non-Executive Director and Economic Advisor to the Arbuthnot Banking Group. Ruth is perhaps best known for having been the Head of the Policy Unit at the Institute of Directors (IoD), a key post which she held between 1995 and 2003. Ruth is also a well-known writer and broadcaster, appearing regularly, for example, on BBC 2’s flagship programme, Newsnight. I am deeply grateful to Ruth for her generous agreement to write this telling critique of how ‘global warming’ madness is undermining British energy policy and the British economy. (Global Warming Politics)

Australia Vows to Resist Pressure for "Carbon Lite" - SYDNEY - Australia vowed on Tuesday to resist pressure to water down plans for an emissions-trading scheme as surveys showed voters were becoming increasingly alarmed at the likely consequence: higher energy prices. (Reuters)

Reuters displays an appalling ignorance of Australia and its politics. K.Rudd's election win was not "stunning" but expected and largely Left-dominated media contrived. Voters are not "confused" about emission trading plans so much as merely fed nonsense but no factual information by said media and the Socialist K.Rudd government. Said government remains totally clueless about what it will do or why because K.Rudd plays for applause on the world stage ("The UN loves me, they really love me!") with no thought of how or why policies might be implemented or of the ramifications of so doing.

Interestingly K.Rudd has transformed from media darling and Left messiah destined to lead a decade of Socialism in this country to populist clown with open discussion of his being a one-term wonder by a rapidly souring press in a mere 8 months. If K.Rudd follows the Blair populism formula and continues to pay attention to the fringe watermelon focus groups that chart his erratic course then his government is going over a cliff and the backlash will have set back Socialism (and environmentalism) decades -- so annoyed are people on the street becoming that Australia may return to commercial whaling simply as an embarrassed one-finger salute to the memory of playing a watermelon nation. (See also: Optimism collapses as voters fear for future: Newspoll (The Australian) - this in a country that cannot export coal, mineral ore, metals, food grains and services fast enough to meet demand at prices far higher than previous boom premiums and where a labor shortage borders on the desperate.) Alternatively he might actually find out what is going on and change direction entirely, in which case the UN are going to wonder what happened to their new world government poster child as he refuses to return to the stage for an encore performance. Either way Australia will not seriously engage in carbon constraint.

Beware green zealots - A FANATIC, George Santayana famously said, is someone who redoubles his effort when he has forgotten his aim. With July shaping up as climate change policy month, a good dose of fanaticism seems likely to come our way.

Nowhere is the fanatic's touch more apparent than in the confused notion of an emissions reduction budget, the idea that there is a fixed quantum of emissions reduction we should achieve by a given date, with the result that if we reduce a bit less in one area, we will have to reduce by more elsewhere.

Reducing Australia's greenhouse emissions is not a goal in its own right; it is merely a way of trying to deal with the risks of potentially harmful climate change. How much we should devote to that goal depends on the costs and benefits involved. If the costs increase relative to the benefits, only the fanatic redoubles his efforts. (Henry Ergas, The Australian)

Australia Govt Warned Not to Weaken Emissions Trade - CANBERRA - Australia's government was warned on Tuesday against softening a planned emissions trade system expected to hit big corporates and households, with Greens senators saying minor lawmakers could ensure it was still-born. (Reuters)

K.Rudd might have an out after all -- tweak the Greens and then claim they thwarted his plans to lead Australia to his promised carbon-free Utopia.

Business leaders not ready for carbon trade scheme - Big business in Australia is unprepared for the national carbon emissions trading scheme set to begin within two years, a survey has found.

Only 36 per cent of the senior executives surveyed were aware the federal government's carbon trading scheme will kick into action in 2010, the Australian Institute of Management, Victoria and Tasmania, (AIM) survey found.

Eighty per cent of respondents said they knew very little or were only somewhat aware of the scheme.

As well, 76 per cent of respondents said their organisations had not commenced planning for the scheme's introduction. (AAP)

That's because even K.Rudd has no clue where he's going with it and business has already become somewhat immune to "say lots, do nothing" K.Rudd. What does anyone expect?

Even State Labor governments ignore him: New $750m power station 'madness' - Just two days before the Garnaut report on climate change is handed down, the Victorian Government has given the go-ahead to a new brown-coal power station in Latrobe Valley. (Sydney Morning Herald)

From CO2 Science this week:

The Rantings of James Hansen: Hubris Unparalleled: Thus spake the prophet of the new millennium.

Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week:
Was there a Medieval Warm Period? YES, according to data published by 555 individual scientists from 337 separate research institutions in 38 different countries ... and counting! This issue's Medieval Warm Period Record of the Week comes from Lake Mina, Minnesota, USA. To access the entire Medieval Warm Period Project's database, click here.

Subject Index Summary:
Trees (Types - Pine: Loblolly, Biomass): How is the production of biomass by loblolly pine trees affected by increases in atmospheric CO2 concentration?

Plant Growth Data:
This week we add new results (blue background) of plant growth responses to atmospheric CO2 enrichment obtained from experiments described in the peer-reviewed scientific literature for: Manchurian Wildrice, Marine Coccolithophores, Softstem Bulrush, and Wetland Reed.

Journal Reviews:
Solar Forcing of Temperature on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau: A new study of the phenomenon provides more evidence for it.

Climate Regime Shifts of the Past Four Centuries: What do they tell us about the nature of global warming over the last half of the 20th century?

Climate and Forest Fires in Ontario, Canada: How are they related?

Climatic vs. Plant Physiological Effects of Rising Atmospheric CO2 Concentrations on Biospheric Carbon Capture in Europe: Which of the competing phenomena is the more powerful? And what does the result imply?

Growth Response of Cuphea to Ultrahigh CO2 Concentrations: Is the growth response also ultrahigh? (

Increase in Near-Surface Atmospheric Moisture Content due to Land Use Changes: Evidence from the Observed Dewpoint Temperature Data By Mahmood et al. - There is an important new research paper: Mahmood, R., K.G. Hubbard, R.D. Leeper, and S.A. Foster, 2008: Increase in Near-Surface Atmospheric Moisture Content due to Land Use Changes: Evidence from the Observed Dewpoint Temperature Data. Mon. Wea. Rev., 136, 1554–1561. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

And The Winner Is: Climate Catastrophe by a Landslide - Remember the gawd-awful movie The Day After Tomorrow from 2004? Gore used footage from the movie in his now bullet hole riddled An Inconvenient Truth for “dramatic effect”. In an odd twist, an event that inspired that movie turns out to be more about geology than climatology. (Watts Up With That?)

The September Surprise - The Great Hurricane of '38 - The year is 1938. Another hot Dust Bowl summer was drawing to a close. The heat has not been as extreme this summer as in some of the prior summers that decade, but it still had been hot, by most all accounts, too hot. The hurricane season was well underway. This one had been uneventful…so far. (Joe D'Aleo, Intellicast)

Oops! Make that 'Bad decision analysis': Don't count on long-term success in climate policy, warns paper in Decision Analysis - Long-term climate change policy in the U.S. and abroad is likely to change very slowly, warns a researcher who calls for stronger short-term goals to reduce carbon emissions, according to a study published in Decision Analysis, a journal of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS).

The only useful climate change policy is one of adaptation since we can not knowingly and predictably alter the climate.

Guffaw! The sad demise of ‘On Line Opinion’ - In an email exchange with the editors of On Line Opinion, I have explained why I will not be contributing any further pieces to the site because it has been “captured” by climate change denialists. At the request of Graham Young I am putting my arguments into this last piece for On Line Opinion. At least, it will be my last unless and until the journal returns to the objectives it was set up to pursue. (Clive Hamilton, On Line Opinion)

Clive, an ethicist who runs the [anti-]Australia Institute and professional climate panicker is miffed On Line Opinion dares to publish opinions that don't jive with Clive. Taking your ball and going home, Clive? Good thing you told us, otherwise most of us wouldn't have noticed.

The Ethics of 'the Ethics of Climate Change' - James Garvey didn't like Ben's review of his book on Culture Wars. But instead of responding to it, he seems to have merely laid out the same argument again.

Science can give us a grip on the fact of climate change. (For a start, have a look here: We know that temperatures are rising; the sea level is rising too; sea ice is thinning; permafrost is melting; glaciers are in world-wide retreat; ElNino events are becoming more frequent, persistent and intense; and on and on. We know that our fellow creatures are already suffering as a result of climate change. We know that human beings are suffering too and that they will continue to suffer. The Red Cross argue that as of 2001 there were as many as 25 million environmental refugees, people on the move away from dry wells and failed crops. That’s larger than the number they give for people displaced by war. One sixth of the world’s population gets its water from the melting snow and ice tricking down from frozen sources which are likely to dry up in the years to come. There is a lot of suffering underway and on the cards. It’s this suffering which makes climate change a moral problem.

Again, Garvey defers the understanding of the problem to 'science', and directs us to the IPCC. There are two main problems with this. First, the IPCC is not beyond scientific challenge as Garvey suggests it is. Second, the imperatives seemingly generated by that scientific definition of the problems - even if the science is true - do not follow necessarily from it. Yes, we may well be inducing climate change, but there may be - in fact, there is - a moral argument that places industrial and economic development over mitigation, in spite of its effect on the environment. Garvey just doesn't get it. But science cannot and must not be allowed to generate moral and political imperatives. To allow it to do so is to undermine Garvey's own discipline. In doing so, the best he can offer from moral philosophy is a reduction of complicated scientific, political, and economic arguments to facile comparisons of 'business as usual' to 'standing around, watching a child drown'. Garvey's inconsequential and trite prose isn't moral philosophy, it is just standard moral posturing.

But, if Garvey wants to wave science around as a moral weapon, let us look at his understanding of the 'science'. He says that "we know that..." (Climate Resistance)

Of Antarctica and Penguins - Tell us the truth – do the two pictures below really hit home with you? Do they make you want to walk to work, put up solar panels this weekend, and eat lower on the food chain the rest of your life? The images, and literally dozens like them available on the internet, drive home the obvious point that Antarctica is melting, global warming is the cause, and we in the United States are responsible for the demise of the penguins thanks to our appetite for fossil fuels. This type of presentation is very typical of the global warming alarmists – feel free to visit nearly 500,000 web sites dealing with global warming and Antarctica. If you have visited our site before, you would know that the professional scientific literature is full of articles questioning the simplistic statements regarding global warming, Antarctica, and the poor penguins.

And in today’s news, there is another tear-jerker about penguins. A new soon-to-be-published study by University of Washington’s P. Dee Boersma reports that the world’s penguin species are generally in decline (remember, bad things happen to good species and good things happen to bad ones) and the press eats it up. AP science writer Seth Borenstein describes their plight like this: (WCR)

This nonsense, again: After 200 million years, all-male future spells doom for reptiles - The only survivors in the wild of an order of reptiles that scampered with dinosaurs could be wiped out because climate change will turn them all into males.

The gender of tuataras, an ancient type of reptile with three eyes, is determined by the temperatures that the embryos are kept at when in the egg. Global warming means that the reptiles, regarded as living fossils, face the threat of dying out in the wild because of a terminal shortage of females.

Only males will be born in nests where the eggs have been kept at temperatures of 22.25C (72.05F) whereas females are guaranteed only at temperatures lower than 22.1C.

Modelling showing the likely impact of climate change on the last remaining homes of tuataras showed that the last female could hatch by 2085 for at least one of the two surviving species.

Most of the last 225 million years have been warmer than the Holocene so we assume tuataras managed a mixed breeding population under warmer climes.

Sydney’s historic weather station: 150 meters makes all the difference - Here is an interesting story about the weather station in Sydney at the Astronomical Observatory (well sort of, it got bumped off). It seems the astronomers and meteorologists at the observatory got into a tug of war in 1912 over a cottage and the resulting move in 1917 ended up skewing the entire temperature record irreparably. (Watts Up With That?)

Stern Optimistic US Will Act on Climate - UNITED NATIONS - British climate change expert Nicholas Stern said on Monday he's confident the United States will move to regulate greenhouse gases in the first half of next year, providing leadership that would help the world reach an agreement in late 2009 on slowing climate change. (Reuters)

Climate change expert? Stern? Sheesh!

We could wish: G8 Climate Change Failure Could Hurt UN-Led Talks - TOKYO - G8 leaders have a 50-50 chance of agreeing next week on a global goal of halving greenhouse gas emissions by mid-century, a Japanese foreign ministry official said, adding that failure could hurt UN-led climate talks. (Reuters)

Answer in search of a question: The Answer to Climate Change? - ‘Geoengineering’ may not be a panacea for global warming, but it deserves more attention from policymakers. (Abigail Haddad, The American)

No, it doesn't. "Climate change" deserves considerably less attention all around.

The Guardian can't read their own poll results: Climate more urgent than economy, say voters - While most people place the environment ahead of the economy as a national priority, only 19% say they would actually choose to pay more for a more expensive environmentally friendly product while shopping. Far more people, 58%, would buy a cheaper alternative, even if it was less good for the environment.

Overall enthusiasm for measures such as green taxes also fades when voters are asked to make an immediate choice in the face of economic troubles. While two-thirds back them in principle, only 30% think the government should be introducing them now, irrespective of the economy. (Julian Glover, The Guardian)

More Brains Per Barrel - It’s all about access to the resources. That was the common talking point for the heads of Repsol, Shell and BP during the opening session of the World Petroleum Congress in Madrid. Repsol CEO Antonio Brufau, Shell chief executive Jeroen van der Veer and BP chief executive Tony Hayward talked about what they see as the key drivers for today’s higher oil prices. All agreed that speculators are not the key factor in today’s higher prices. Instead, the main problems are access to the oil and gas reserves that are held by the national oil companies. Given greater access to reserves, all of the chiefs believed that substantial amounts of new oil could be delivered. “It’s about fundamentals,” said Hayward. “Demand is outstripping new supply.”

The other key issue is the psychology of the market. With oil buyers believing that future supplies will be limited, they are willing to continue bidding up the price. Van der Veer said the high prices are like an “anticipation of things that may happen in the future.”

While some critics will undoubtedly dismiss the comments of the three executives as self-serving, the emerging theme of the Petroleum Congress is one of limited supplies. By lunch time of the first day, several speakers at the various sessions were coming back to the same issues: limited access to large reserves, the high costs of materials, and the dire shortage of highly skilled workers – all of which are preventing substantial increases in supply and helping force prices higher. (Robert Bryce, Energy Tribune)

US Turns Against Curbs on Oil Drilling - Exxon - MADRID - The US public mood is moving toward allowing drilling in areas which are currently off limits to the oil majors due to environmental concerns, the chief executive of Exxon Mobil said on Tuesday.

Rex Tillerson said outdated environmental attitudes were the reason for opposition to drilling in areas such as the eastern Gulf of Mexico and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

"We're stuck in this emotional, environmental past ... Public sentiment in the United States seems to be shifting," Tillerson told Reuters in an interview. "The American people are kind of sick and tired of these prices."

Some politicians have questioned the impact on prices of opening US offshore waters that are now closed to energy exploration. Last week Guy Caruso, who heads the federal Energy Information Administration, said consumers would see little savings at the pump from the move.

Tillerson dismissed this view.

"When people make statements like that it suggests to me that they don't understand how the 85 million barrels (of total world oil production) today is delivered," he said. (Reuters)

Fossil Fool - As pressure builds to develop America's domestic energy resources, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid now says it's a health issue. Coal and oil, he says, make us sick. So why does he oppose nuclear power?

The Dr. No of the drill-nothing Congress tried to deflect the issue of rising gas prices Monday by telling Fox Business News that there are costs we should worry about besides those stemming from Democratic inaction. Our guilt is supposed to replace our anger. "Coal makes us sick," Reid said, "oil makes us sick, it's global warming, it's ruining our country, it's ruining our world, we've got to stop using fossil fuel . . . ." (IBD)

D'oh! Arnold Schwarzenegger dents green credentials with Dodge Challenger - Arnold Schwarzenegger has risked accusations of green hypocrisy by driving around in a gas-guzzling Dodge Challenger Coupe. (Daily Telegraph)

Who needs an Amazon when you can have sugarcane? Biofuels Battle: Tear Down The Brazilian Wall - Kenneth Rapoza reports from Sao Paulo: Biofuels have few friends lately. But Brazil’s biofuel industry found a big one—U.S. Senator Richard Lugar.

Brazil’s ethanol lobby Unica is breaking out the fireworks for its Fourth of July pro-sugarcane ethanol campaign called, with a nod to Papa Smurf, “Are We There Yet?”. Sen. Lugar thinks Brazilian ethanol—made from sugarcane rather than corn—could help lower U.S. gasoline prices, which have reached record levels. Unica, not surprisingly, thinks the same, and blames Washington’s $0.54 per gallon tariff on Brazilian ethanol for American pain at the pump. (Keith Johnson, WSJ)

Fuel protest: Hauliers threaten to bring London to a standstill - Hundreds of hauliers are expected to bring London to a standstill in what is expected to be one of the largest ever protests over rocketing fuel prices. (Daily Telegraph)

Renewable Energy is "Green Gold Rush" - UN Report - LONDON - In what is being called a "green gold rush," global investment in renewable energy surged some 60 percent to US$148 billion in 2007, a UN agency said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

"Green" decisions are generally foolish and a "green gold rush" is definitely a fool's gold rush. If you have invested in this nonsense you really need to get out before the bubble bursts.

EU Deal on CO2 Car Plan Still Distant - Verheugen - BERLIN - The European Union still has much work to do before a collective deal on reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from cars is reached, EU Industry Commissioner Guenter Verheugen said on Monday. (Reuters)

French Eye Annual Penalties for Polluting Cars - PARIS - Penalties imposed by France on heavily polluting cars will need [to be levied] annually and not only upon purchase, Environment Minister Jean-Louis Borloo told daily newspaper Le Parisien on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Oh boy... 'UK should call for freeze on the 75 new coal -fired power stations planned for Europe' - The UK should lead the way in calling for a freeze on the building of new coal-fired power stations, according to a think-tank report. A Europe-wide block for at least two years on coal investment is necessary if cuts in carbon emissions are to be achieved. (Daily Telegraph)

Brazil to Authorize 3 New Nuclear Plants - Minister - SAO PAULO - Brazil's government will commission three new nuclear plants in the coming 12 months, Mines and Energy Minister Edison Lobao said on Monday. (Reuters)

US Hydrogen Maker Sees Car Filling Stations Soon - LOS ANGELES - One of the main obstacles to the development of hydrogen as a fuel for cars is the lack of a system of fueling stations. (Reuters)

Nonsense! The only real obstacle is an energy-efficient source of hydrogen.

Solar Shield Experiment Aims to Keep the Power On - When you flip a light switch to illuminate the pages of your favorite book or reach into your refrigerator for that last piece of key lime pie, you expect the electric current coursing through the outlets to power everything from your lights to your nifty new big-screen television. When the power goes out, it can be more than just an inconvenience. (NASA/GSFC)

Rhode Island Top Court Overturns Lead Paint Ruling - BOSTON - Rhode Island's top court on Tuesday overturned a landmark lower court ruling that three former manufacturers of lead paint were liable for creating a public nuisance by covering up the health risks of lead paint. (Reuters)

Lead Paint Cinch - Yesterday was a good day for justice in Rhode Island, where the state Supreme Court stopped cold an attempt to turn lead paint into the next tobacco or asbestos. (Wall Street Journal)

Multiple jabs have not made troops sick: study - LONDON - A British study has found no link between illness among British troops sent to Iraq and multiple vaccinations. Instead, it says the troops tend to blame poor health on multiple jabs even when they did not have them.

Several studies have linked ill health in forces in Iraq to multiple vaccinations, but Dominic Murphy, a psychologist at King's College London, said these relied on troops' own recollections, and should be re-evaluated.

"Multiple vaccinations given to personnel in the UK armed forces in preparation for deployment to Iraq are not associated with adverse health consequences when vaccinations are recorded objectively from medical records," said the study carried out by Murphy's team, published in Tuesday's British Medical Journal. (Reuters)

Hmm... this again: Sunburn alert: UVB does more damage to DNA than UVA - As bombs burst in air this July 4, chances are that sunburn will be the red glare that most folks see – and feel. But unfortunately, even when there is no burn, the effects of the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays can have deadly consequences.

Thanks to a new research study published in the July 2008 issue of The FASEB Journal, scientists now know why one type of UV light (UVB) is more likely to cause skin cancer than the other (UVA). This information should be useful to public health officials and government regulatory agencies in identifying specific criteria for exactly how effective consumer products, like sunscreen, are in preventing skin damage leading to skin cancer. It should also allow scientists to pursue new lines of research and treatment into repairing the damage caused by the sun's rays. (Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology)

Actually this is quite controversial:

De Fabo, et al, claim this to be true for the cause of melanoma, at least in a mouse model - see: Ultraviolet B but not Ultraviolet A Radiation Initiates Melanoma.

On the other hand: Melanoma risk only partially associated with exposure to UVB from sunlight - The report in the Dec. 21 [2005] issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute also indicates that only nonmalignant skin cancers (basal and squamous cell carcinoma) are strongly associated with exposure to UVB radiation. (University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center)

UVA (ultraviolet radiation in the 320-400 nanometer [nm] band), which is implicated in deep skin DNA changes thought responsible for malignant melanomas, is not blocked by ozone at all and so is not a political target.

UVB (270-320nm), which causes sunburn, is both blocked by ozone (O3) and, if allowed to penetrate the atmosphere, creates ozone lower in the atmosphere where it can be an irritant in photochemical smog -- thick clouds also block UVB. That it is blocked by stratospheric ozone makes UVB a lucrative target.

UVC (<270nm), which would cause severe burns with short exposure, does not penetrate the atmosphere, blocked completely by atmospheric oxygen (O2), in addition to ozone (O3).

Regardless, life flourishes in the tropics, where stratospheric ozone levels are never high and where solar radiation bombardment, including UVA & UVB is roughly 1,000 times higher than that received in the region of the Antarctic Ozone Anomaly that is the cause of so much angst.

Bottom line? Don't be silly and get burned but do get some sun every day -- you need it to synthesize vitamin D and you need vitamin D daily (you don't store it so you need to keep making it as required) for bone health, heart function and to keep many kinds of cancer at bay, among other cool things. Sunburn is not good for you but some sun exposure certainly is.

Traffic tickets for sugar — Does healthy eating mean low-sugar? - Sugar makes food taste good and fun to eat. Kids especially love sweets. Therefore, sugar must be bad. To allow ourselves to love food means we might eat too much and get fat.

As incredible as that may sound, it’s the basic logic behind beliefs that everyone — from children to adults — should limit sugar to eat ‘healthy’ and avoid getting fat. All sorts of elaborate theories, of course, have worked backwards from this belief, trying to propose explanations for why sugar is fattening, but that doesn’t make them true. When the right question isn’t asked first, the answers aren’t likely to be very helpful. (Junkfood Science)

Mothers and children are not rodents - I will try not to spit and sputter in this post, but geesh! Efforts to frighten young mothers and pregnant women about being fat or gaining weight during pregnancy have taken a new low. First, it was worms, then zebra finches. Now, young women and their children are being compared to rats. (Junkfood Science)

Ontario high school student develops way to decompose plastic bags in months - TORONTO - As jurisdictions across Canada take action to ban the use of landfill-clogging plastic bags, which can take up to 1,000 years to decompose, an Ontario high school student has discovered a way to break down the pesky plastic in a matter of months. (CP)

The Girl Scouts' new radicalism - The Girl Scouts of the USA have been on a steady, well-documented leftward slide for many years. (More on that later.) But this summer, the organization is about to take a giant leap even further in that direction.

Many adults associated with the Girl Scouts have expressed serious concerns about this new curriculum. Promoting social activism, emphasizing the power of self, and jumping on the bandwagon of politically correct causes like global warming are further evidence to them of the organization's ever-growing radicalism. (Marcia Segelstein, OneNewsNow)

Dambusters: the protest that turned the tide of global green opinion - It is 25 years since a band of protesters won their campaign to block the construction of a Tasmanian dam. Their success inspired a generation of environmentalists. (The Independent)

Some of this is true, to Australia's eternal shame. What we should have done is agree not to build the dam but put a nuke there instead -- the watermelons would have dug the dam for us by hand and Tasmania would not be an underpowered poor relation needing constant support from mainland states. The 'success' of these nitwits has been keeping millions of developing nations' poor from affordable power and safe, reliable water supplies.

South Korea Quietly Steps up GMO Corn Imports for Food - SEOUL - South Korea may import more than twice as much genetically modified corn for food use as expected this year, a government source said on Tuesday, as soaring prices force companies to accelerate the switch to cheaper varieties. (Reuters)

Activists Destroy Three GM Fields in France - PARIS - Three fields of genetically modified (GM) maize were destroyed over the weekend in southwest France, the farm ministry said on Tuesday, calling the acts illegal and irresponsible for France's research sector.

Attacks on GM tests have become common practice in France, Europe's largest grain producer, where the use of biotech crops is widely opposed on fears they could harm humans and wildlife by triggering an uncontrolled spread of modified genes.

The attack, on Sunday night, was the first of the season. (Reuters)

July 1, 2008

Britain Seeks to Set Pace in Carbon Capture Quest - LONDON - Britain was on Monday announcing a shortlist of firms in a tender to build the world's first commercial-scale power plant to burn coal and gas without adding to global warming. (Reuters)

Here's a question for you: why do we mine carbon? Why de we expend effort and energy extracting coal, oil and gas? Could it have anything to do with our desire to utilize some of the energy stored within, you think? So how do we do that?

Think about that for a moment before reading on -- go ahead, we'll wait.


Ready? Alright then:

We mine it to burn, you say? Well, true enough but intellectually lazy.

Why do we want to burn it?

To harvest some of the energy stored when the original bonds between carbon and oxygen molecules were broken by photosynthesis would be a more correct answer wouldn't it and we release that energy by restoring the bonds, don't we.


We facilitate the reaction between carbon and oxygen in controlled situations like internal combustion engines, furnaces or whatever our particular need may be and utilize the resultant energy release as best we can.

What are we specifically seeking to produce in order to release this energy?

Carbon dioxide, right? We also produce a little monoxide but not if we can help it since that leaves some of the desired energy bound in the molecule through incomplete combustion.

So, the desired end product is carbon dioxide plus energy, yes?

The energy underpins our society and the carbon dioxide is restored to the biosphere from whence it came, ready for solar-powered recycling, everyone is happy, all living critters gain and all is right with the world.

Another question: is it expensive to retrofit generating plants to capture carbon dioxide "just in case" enhanced greenhouse panic merchants are right? Decide for yourself -- latest available average residential price for electricity in the U.S.: 10.40 ¢/kWh, cost increase with 90% carbon capture 6.92 ¢/kWh -- so you pay 167% for power to reduce essential trace gas emission 90% and then you have to get rid of the captured carbon somewhere, increasing power requirement and reducing plant output and also replace the power parasitized from the plant required to drive the capture/reconstitute solvents or whatever system is being used, driving up net energy consumption significantly rather than reducing and conserving.

Here's the next question: why would we want to expend more energy and effort capturing and reburying carbon we have already expended effort and energy mining in the first place? Especially when that effort merely denies the biosphere access to an essential trace gas which is already in historically short supply? For most of its history life on Earth has had access to many times the level of atmospheric carbon dioxide now available and rarely has it been forced to cope with levels so low as now. So why would we want to harm life in general and humans in particular by restricting humanity's generous (albeit accidental) gift to the biosphere?

Two kinds of people are driving this absurd mania: those who are profiting from the hysteria through sales, donations and advantageous mandates and those who simply hate people and seek to constrain human activity through strangling the energy supply.

What is missing is any indication that life on Earth is in any way harmed or disadvantaged by atmospheric carbon dioxide levels that humans can possibly achieve even if we extract and burn all the fossil fuel reserves thought to exist.

The bigger question (for which we have no answer) is why we are allowing these maniacs to panic people and politicians into actions which harm not only humanity but all life on Earth. It makes no sense at all.

Carbon Cemeteries are a Dead Loss for Everyone (.pdf) - The Carbon Sense Coalition (“Carbon Sense”) has looked in detail at the costs and benefits of carbon geo-sequestration as a guide to what should be in any legislation establishing property rights in carbon burial grounds.

In summary our findings are: The basis for legislation requiring the burial of carbon dioxide (CO2) rests wholly on one proposition – that increasing emissions of CO2 from man’s activities will cause dangerous global warming. This proposition is false. (Carbon Sense Coalition)

Experts urge states to invest in CO2 carbon capture and storage - Capturing and storing carbon emissions from power generation holds the key to managing climate change amid rising use of polluting oil, gas and coal, an international CO2 conference heard in The Hague on Monday.

But the technology and infrastructure required to maximise carbon capture and storage (CCS) is being neglected due to high costs, an absence of business incentives and insufficient political will, experts also said.

"Without CCS, we could not draft any (plan) that reaches the greenhouse gas reduction target," the International Energy Agency's (IEA) policy analysis director Pieter Boot told the gathering jointly organised by the Netherlands and Saudi Arabia.

"One can argue that without CCS, climate policy will not succeed." (AFP)

Well D U H ! "Climate policy" can not succeed, with or without CCS simply because it is based on the flawed premise that we can knowingly and predictably adjust the global climate by tweaking a couple of minor variables at the fringes of an enormously complex, coupled, non-linear chaotic system.

Really? Germany to start storing carbon dioxide underground - Germany was due to inaugurate Europe's first underground carbon dioxide storage site on Monday, the country's national geoscience institute said. (AFP)

So, despite being part of the EU Denmark isn't considered part of Europe? Norway's StatoilHydro has been running industrial CCS at their Sleipner gas field and storing the carbon dioxide in a deep saline aquifer since 1996 (for political reasons, not because they gain any real advantage from so doing). It would seem Germany is about a dozen years late being the "first".

Shell Wants Refiners Exempt from EU CO2 Cap Plan - MADRID - Royal Dutch Shell Plc wants oil refiners to be given CO2 emission permits for free in the next phase of the European Union's CO2 emissions trading scheme but is happy for most other sectors to be charged.

Chief Executive Jeroen van der Veer told the World Petroleum Congress that the crude refining, chemicals and paper industries should be exempt from proposals to charge businesses for emitting CO2, because they would otherwise be at a disadvantage against rivals in the US and Asia.

However, he supports the idea of other sectors being charged as a means to fight climate change. (Reuters)

The Effect Of Landscape Change Within The Climate System - A New Workshop - Our workshop report on the role of humans in the climate system appeared in late 2007; Mahmood, R., K. G. Hubbard, R. Pielke Sr. (2007), Effect of Human Activities on the Atmosphere, Eos Trans. AGU, 88(52), 580, 10.1029/2007EO520007

The abstract reads,

“Detecting the Atmospheric Response to the Changing Face of the Earth: A Focus on Human-Caused Regional Climate Forcings, Land-Cover/Land-Use Change, and Data Monitoring; Boulder, Colorado, 27–29 August 2007; Human activities continue to significantly modify the environment. The impacts of these changes are highlighted, for example, in local-, regional-, and global-scale trends in modern atmospheric temperature records and other relevant atmospheric indicators. Studies using both modeled and observed data have documented these impacts. Thus, it is essential that we detect these changes accurately to better understand the impacts on climate and provide improved assessment of the predictability of future climate.”

The full EOS workshop report is also available (see).

There is a new meeting scheduled in November 2008 which will further present assessments of the role of land surface processes within the climate system. It is

LUCID – Land-Use and Climate, Identification of robust impacts” organized by Nathalie de Noblet-Ducoudré and Andy Pitman.

This meeting will be a major, much needed further reporting on this issue, but only if they assess climate metrics more completely than was done in the 2007 IPCC report. (Roger Pielke Sr., Climate Science)

Who’s Adjusting the Climate in Tucumcari: Cows, Canals, or Hansen? - On Sunday I posted about the USHCN climate station of record in Tucumcari, NM highlighting its positive points since it has all the hallmarks of a well sited station with a long and uninterrupted record. But something was odd with the temperature record that didn’t quite make sense at first glance. (Watts Up With That?)

Are Volcanoes Melting Arctic? - While the media scream that man-made global warming is making the North Pole ice-free, another possible cause is as old as the Earth itself. They just have to look deeper. (IBD)

Global Warming as Mass Neurosis - Last week marked the 20th anniversary of the mass hysteria phenomenon known as global warming. Much of the science has since been discredited. Now it's time for political scientists, theologians and psychiatrists to weigh in.

What, discredited? Thousands of scientists insist otherwise, none more noisily than NASA's Jim Hansen, who first banged the gong with his June 23, 1988, congressional testimony (delivered with all the modesty of "99% confidence").

But mother nature has opinions of her own. NASA now begrudgingly confirms that the hottest year on record in the continental 48 was not 1998, as previously believed, but 1934, and that six of the 10 hottest years since 1880 antedate 1954. Data from 3,000 scientific robots in the world's oceans show there has been slight cooling in the past five years, never mind that "80% to 90% of global warming involves heating up ocean waters," according to a report by NPR's Richard Harris.

The Arctic ice cap may be thinning, but the extent of Antarctic sea ice has been expanding for years. At least as of February, last winter was the Northern Hemisphere's coldest in decades. In May, German climate modelers reported in the journal Nature that global warming is due for a decade-long vacation. But be not not-afraid, added the modelers: The inexorable march to apocalypse resumes in 2020. (Brett Stephens, Wall Street Journal)

Questioning Science - The theory of anthropogenic, or man-made, global warming has become an unchallengeable fact, a piece of black letter law almost unique in the world of science.

Proponents of the theory say the time for scientific debate is over. It would irresponsible to fund any further research into counter views on the relationship between elevated levels of carbon dioxide and a rise in temperatures since the mid-1970s.

It's regarded as career suicide for scientists to advocate any counter view of the causes of global warming, let alone deny the orthodox consensus view as adopted by the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

However, there is a school of thought that our knowledge of climate systems is as yet insufficient to be so conclusive on the causes of global warming.

Today Sunday examines the political consensus building that has portrayed global warming as the most urgent crisis humankind has ever faced.

Skeptics point to the gaps in the knowledge base and the flaws in the measurement of vital climate and weather data upon which the consensus is based.

Social researchers also highlight the dangers of conducting science as a form of religion, divided into believers and deniers.

They warn that as governments prepare to make expensive policy decisions, such as carbon emissions trading schemes, this consensus may not reflect the best science. | Watch part one | Watch part two (Sunday (Channel 9 News Magazine))

Some of the hidden costs of model-driven hysteria: Insurers Criticized For New Rate Models - Scientists say the jury is still out on whether rising sea temperatures will cause more hurricanes to hit U.S. coastlines. Yet some insurance companies are boosting premiums based on assumptions that they will. Others are withdrawing from coastal communities altogether.

Costs for homeowner insurance along the East and Gulf coasts have risen 20% to 100% since 2004, says the Insurance Information Institute, a trade group. In the three years through 2006, says the institute, property and casualty insurers registered record profits, topping out at $65.8 billion in 2006. (Despite severe U.S. weather that has caused about $8.9 billion in insured property losses to date this year, it's too early to forecast 2008 profits.)

Helping to drive these developments is a little-known tool of the insurance world: Computerized catastrophe modeling. Crafted by several independent firms and used by most insurers, so-called cat models rely on complex data to estimate probable losses from hurricanes.

But regulators and other critics contend that the latest cat models -- which include assumptions about various climate changes -- are triggering higher insurance rates. (M.P. McQueen, Wall Street Journal)

Check out this 1993 paper--with Mark Serreze's name on it - Absence of evidence for greenhouse warming over the Arctic Ocean in the past 40 years (Tom Nelson)

The Week In Washington, D. C. - Now that cap-and-trade legislation is dead for this year, the Congress has returned to non-stop talking about the need for immediate action to stop global warming. By my count there were at least ten House and Senate hearings on global warming or energy issues this week. On Monday, Dr. James E. Hansen, the director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York City, was back in Washington to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of his testimony to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee that inaugurated the global warming craze in this country. (Myron Ebell, Cooler Heads Digest)

Twenty years of demagoguery (Number Watch)

Chickenshit RINOs do flock together: Schwarzenegger now backs McCain on environment - SAN FRANCISCO -- Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, appearing in a taped interview Sunday on "Meet the Press," defended GOP presidential candidate John McCain as "the real deal on the environment" within days of taking a shot at the Arizona senator's call for lifting the federal ban on offshore oil drilling as blowing smoke. (SF Chronicle)

Prudence: a green virtue - Will economic woes push environmentalism down the political agenda? Not when being eco-friendly means saving money (Jonathon Porritt, The Guardian)

Always, then.

Moonbattery: This economic panic is pushing the planet right back down the agenda - Oil-dependent countries are focused on growth at all costs, and the pale green political consensus looks unlikely to hold (George Monbiot, The Guardian)

Oh George, get real for a moment! Politicians have never had anything genuine to 'save the planet' from, unless you count wannabe 'planet savers' and they only put people at risk, not the whole planet.

Strewth! The world's will to tackle climate change is irresistible - Far from stymying the environmental cause, the downturn in the world's economies highlights just how pressing it is (Rajendra Pachauri, The Guardian)

D'oh! Eco-tourism: Carbon 'offsets', a good idea that's not working - Top airlines and tour operators keen to shore up their green credentials nowadays offer customers carbon "offsets" to compensate holiday pollution. The problem is that few tourists seem eager to write off their green guilt. (AFP)

Bullshit! End fear tactics on climate change, PM tells Coalition - KEVIN Rudd has called for the Opposition to end its "cheap populism" on climate change, amid Coalition claims the Labor Party is made up of utopians who want to shut all power stations. (The Australian)

The Opposition needs to tell people long and load just how much it is going to cost them to appease the Green Goddess while the hard-earned cash of those who have worked for it is siphoned off by the Socialist wannabe social engineers and given to dole bludgers and junkies as "wealth redistribution". More importantly they need to show voters just who is really using scare tactics (run clip of gorebull warming propaganda here, fade to evangelistic K.Rudd in full carbon hysteria).

'Environmentalist' Sting Flies Solo From England to Germany - According to Him -- meaning the amazingly pompous and holier-than-thou rockstar Sting -- the world is coming to an end if we don't stop global warming.

Yet, the self-described "environmentalist" bassplayer for the rock band the Police continues to symbolize the hypocrisy of wealthy liberal elites that tell us we have to make sacrifices for the good of the long as they don't have to! (NewsBusters)

Speaking of misanthropic maniacs: Anti-science conservatives must be stopped - Americans must not allow global warming deniers to block the policies needed to avert catastrophic climate change. Our future is at stake. (Joseph Romm, Salon)

Despite the best efforts of global gloomsters? Happiness is rising around the world: study - People in most countries around the world are happier these days, according to newly released data from the World Values Survey based at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research.

Data from representative national surveys conducted from 1981 to 2007 show the happiness index rose in an overwhelming majority of nations studied.

"It's a surprising finding," said U-M political scientist Ronald Inglehart, who directs the World Values Surveys and is the lead author of an article on the topic to be published in the July 2008 issue of the journal Perspectives on Psychological Science. "It's widely believed that it's almost impossible to raise an entire country's happiness level." (University of Michigan)

DEMING: Getting sensible on energy - If the price of gasoline is around $4 a gallon, Americans have no one to blame but themselves. For decades, we have demonized the people and businesses who supply our energy. Energy fuels our economy and prosperity, but bad public policies have made it increasingly more difficult to develop our own vast resources. Americans are in danger of falling irreversibly into a dysfunctional culture and fading into the dust of history.

We sit on our own undeveloped energy supplies and complain about the high price of gasoline and imported oil. Public policy in the United States is not designed to facilitate the development of new energy supplies, but to stop it. The U.S. government has placed the Continental Shelves of the U.S. off-limits for drilling. Offshore drilling would have virtually no significant effect on environmental quality. (Washington Times)

We Can Lower Oil Prices Now - Although most experts agree that financial speculation was not responsible for the surge in the global prices of food and energy, many people remain puzzled about the source of these remarkable price rises. Economics offers a simple supply-and-demand explanation and reason for optimism about the future of commodity prices. In the case of oil, economics also suggests how policy changes today that affect the future could quickly lower the current price of oil. (Martin Feldstein, Wall Street Journal)

Saudi Oil Project Brings Skepticism to the Surface - KHURAIS OIL FIELD, Saudi Arabia — For mile after mile, there is nothing but flat and unrelenting sand on every side, with a few black camels wandering in the desert glare.

Then, suddenly, it rises into view, like some vast industrial mirage. The Khurais oil field’s processing plant resembles nothing so much as an oversize Erector Set, its unlikely vertical tubes and steel scaffolding gleaming in the sun.

But this remote patch of desert could hold the key to the soaring price of gasoline around the world. (New York Times)

No Sun Intended - Washington has placed a moratorium on solar power projects on federal land. Is this the work of evil oil companies? No, it's the fault of environmentalists.

The Bureau of Land Management quietly decided in May that the development of solar plants in 119 million sun-soaked, federally owned acres in the western states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah would have to wait at least two years while bureaucrats sorted out their environmental impact.

For decades environmental groups have been pushing the government and private sector to develop more alternative sources of energy. But that campaign is beginning to look like a sham to cover the groups' BANANA — Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything — activism.

To be fair, it appears the BLM acted without being forced by an environmentalist-filed lawsuit or activist pressure. And so far, the media are reporting that only a single group — the Wilderness Society — has expressed support for the moratorium.

Make no mistake, though. The environmental groups are the reason the BLM made its decision. Had they not spent the past 30 years rabidly crusading against development, reflexively defending wildlife habitats from minor and imaginary threats and demonizing economic progress, the solar projects would not have been interrupted.

Washington has become so overly sensitive to the possibility of vocal opposition on anything that has an environmental impact that it feels it must inoculate itself from the radicals — even when the project is one they should support without reservation. (IBD)

Alistair Darling forced into car tax climbdown to head off Labour revolt - Plans to hit millions of motorists with backdated road tax rises of up to £245 are being axed to head off a Labour revolt next week.

Chancellor Alistair Darling has privately assured backbenchers that he will 'fix' the problem in his autumn pre-Budget report.

The decision would mark another U-turn following the Government's humiliation over the 10p tax crisis.

Under proposals which will start to kick in next year, nearly 18million motorists - seven out of ten - will pay more to run their cars by 2010, depending on their greenhouse gas emissions. (Daily Mail)

British Renewables Push Will Boost Energy Bills - LONDON - Meeting Britain's renewable energy targets will add significantly to domestic energy bills on top of already steeply rising fuel prices, a report said on Monday. (Reuters)

Report blows hole in wind power plan - Wind power would be too unreliable to meet Britain's electricity needs, according to a new report. It says wind patterns around the country mean turbines will fail to produce enough power at times of high demand. Written by an independent consultancy and funded by the Renewable Energy Foundation, the report says backup electricity plants will be needed to meet demand during calm conditions. It comes after the Government last week unveiled a £100million plan to build at least 4,000 wind turbines, with a further 3,000 offshore. The programme is expected to drive household bills up by £260 a year. Published online in the journal Energy Policy, the study confirms concerns among critics that wind around Britain is too volatile to provide reliable energy. Using wind data from the Met Office, researchers found that in January, when energy demand is highest, wind farms often fail to produce enough electricity, dropping on occasion to 4 per cent of their maximum output. Backup fossil fuel plants would need to be switched on and off to make up the shortfall in supplies - a highly inefficient process that would reduce any carbon savings from wind farms. (Daily Telegraph)

Some hopeful estimates: Energy bills will rise by £213 to meet EU emissions targets, study warns - Every household in the country will face a £213 rise in their annual energy bills if the UK is to meet European Union emissions targets, according to an Ernst & Young report, which also warns that half of all Britons are not prepared to pay.

The accountancy firm will today publish a major new report on the impact on energy bills of the UK's climate change commitments, which warns that households will have to pay at least 20 per cent more to gas and electricity suppliers.

The report, Costing the Earth?, puts the cost of capital investment required to meet emissions reduction and renewable energy targets for 2020 at £100bn. Consumers will be required to contribute £5.3bn towards those costs by 2020, when the EU's targets become mandatory, an average rise of £213 in today's prices.

The report includes research from YouGov, the polling organisation, which found that 96 per cent of respondents disagreed with the statement "my home energy bill needs to rise to help combat climate change."

Exactly half the respondents said they would not be prepared to cut back on their energy consumption, even if their bill was to go up by £200 or more. (The Independent)

Look out, Mr Cameron, or we'll all be in the dark - Since Gordon Brown on Thursday launched what he called "the greatest revolution in our energy policy since the advent of nuclear power", centred on building thousands of new wind turbines, let us start with a simple fact.

Nothing conveys the futility of wind power more vividly than this: that all the electricity generated by the 2,000 wind turbines already built in Britain is still less than that produced by a single medium-sized conventional power station. (Christopher Booker, Daily Telegraph)

India Focuses on Renewables in New Climate Plan - NEW DELHI - India unveiled on Monday a national plan to deal with the threat of global warming, focusing on renewable energy for sustainable development while refusing to commit to any emission targets that risk slowing economic growth. (Reuters)

Human Rights, Rare Species on EU Biofuels Agenda - BRUSSELS - The European Union is near to agreeing standards for biofuels that put human rights and endangered species high on the agenda, a diplomat chairing the negotiations said.

But the critical issue of how much CO2 they should save is as yet undecided. (Reuters)

Research yields pricey chemicals from biodiesel waste - In a move that promises to change the economics of biodiesel refining, chemical engineers at Rice University have unveiled a set of techniques for cleanly converting problematic biofuels waste into chemicals that fetch a profit. (Rice University)

Promise of Biofuel Clouded by Weather Risks - The record storms and floods that swept through the Midwest last month struck at the heart of America’s corn region, drowning fields and dashing hopes of a bumper crop.

They also brought into sharp relief a new economic hazard. As America grows more reliant on corn for its fuel supply, it is becoming vulnerable to the many hazards that can damage crops, ranging from droughts to plagues to storms.

The floods have helped send the price of ethanol up 19 percent in a month. They appear to have had little effect on the price of gasoline at the pump, as ethanol represents only about 6 percent of the nation’s transport fuel today.

But that share is expected to rise to at least 20 percent in coming decades. Experts fear that a future crop failure could take so much fuel out of the market that it would send prices soaring at the pump. Eventually, the cost of filling Americans’ gas tanks could be influenced as much by hail in Iowa as by the bombing of an oil pipeline in Nigeria.

“We are holding ourselves hostage to the weather,” said John M. Reilly, a senior lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an ethanol expert. “Agricultural markets are subject to wide variability and big price spikes, just like oil markets.” (New York Times)

UK and US guidelines on kids' physical activity levels need rethinking - UK and US guidelines on how much physical activity children need to boost their health and stave off obesity need to be revised, conclude researchers in a study published ahead of print in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. (BMJ)

Population-based approach needed to reduce obesity in United States - A comprehensive, population-based strategy is needed to reduce the alarming prevalence of obesity in the United States, according to a new American Heart Association scientific statement published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Corn, Wheat Fall After U.S. Farmers Planted More Than Expected - June 30 -- Corn fell the maximum permitted by the Chicago Board of Trade and wheat dropped the most in 13 weeks after the government said U.S. farmers planted more of both crops than previously expected. (Bloomberg)

Carbon hoofprint: Cows supplemented with rbST reduce agriculture's environmental impact - Milk goes green: Cows that receive recombinant Bovine Somatotropin (rbST) make more milk, all the while easing natural resource pressure and substantially reducing environmental impact, according to a Cornell University study to be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (June 30, 2008.) (Cornell University)

The antis hate it, of course and the Nude Socialist gives them plenty of ink: Can a cow hormone help save the environment? ( news service)

Farmers praise GM crops in EU study - European farmers who grow genetically modified crops enjoy higher yields and revenues than conventional growers, according to a new study.

Scientists from the Joint Research Centre, the European Commission's scientific body, surveyed more than 400 Spanish farmers who grew Bt maize – the only GM crop allowed for cultivation in the EU. They found they produced higher yields and earned up to €122 more per hectare (£50 per acre) than conventional maize farmers.

It is the first time scientists have looked into the impact of GM in Europe, said Dr Emilio Rodriguez Cerezo, who led the research. "There are definite economic advantages for farmers for the reason that their crops are not destroyed by pests," he said.

The European Commission president, Jose Manuel Barroso, wants to remove regulatory obstacles to the controversial technology, arguing that GM crops could counter soaring food prices. However, the French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, who takes over the EU presidency tomorrow, will be calling for more controls on GM organisms. Environ-mental groups accuse the GM industry of exploiting the global food crisis to win approval for its products. (The Independent)